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Archive for the ‘WWE | Pro Wrestling’

Dolph Ziggler Establishes Himself as Go-To Star

November 24, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

As we older wrestling fans bitterly walk into our thirties and forties, we have this tendency to slip on rose-tinted sunglasses. This is done in an attempt to view today’s wrestling world through old lens, as much of a chore it is to try and build parallels to the two.

In particular, we sometimes champion a wrestler in today’s field by dressing them in the repurposed shell of a wrestler we heralded about an era or two back. Daniel Bryan became the bearded, jovial reincarnate of Chris Benoit, one that nobody would feel guilty about enjoying. Bray Wyatt’s manner of speech invoked memories of Jake Roberts and Kevin Sullivan, the calm savage. CM Punk at one time had seanced the spirit of Stone Cold Steve Austin, through profanity, blunt honesty, and defiance. When Punk’s walkout in 2014 too eerily matched Austin’s 2002 vacancy, Dean Ambrose stepped in to be the unconventional, office-scorning rebel.

What about Dolph Ziggler? Before, Ziggler was a more convincing offspring of Curt Hennig than Curtis Axel is, flailing like a fish out of water off the simplest of offensive strikes, curly blonde locks scattering like the frills of a pom-pom. Salesmanship aside, Ziggler’s legitimate athletic background, like Hennig’s, was oh-so-perfectly melded with a willingness to portray the preening-douche-turned-punching-bag for so many. Imbued with these traits, Ziggler is indispensable.

Ziggler also shares similarities with other Hennig fashioner, Shawn Michaels. In the 1990s (hell, up until his 2010 retirement), Michaels could steal the show as either a face (drawing sympathy for the comeback, telling a story equally through emotion and athletics) or a heel (for the same qualities as Hennig and Ziggler). Michaels will forever have tenancy in wrestling’s penthouse suite for his ability to take the most jaded know-it-all, the ‘I wouldn’t have written the story THIS way’ grouch, and reduce him to a bright-eyed believer through sheer will. It’s a skill nobody can duplicate.

This isn’t to say Ziggler is scraping insulation in Michaels’ ceiling at present time, but after Survivor Series, there’s a new inkling of just how sky-high Ziggler’s ceiling may be.

It’s a role Michaels nailed eleven years ago, the hopeless hero. Michaels needed to survive against Chris Jericho, Christian, and a less-inked Randy Orton in order to save Steve Austin’s job. The fact that Michaels had lost enough blood to fill a fish-tank only upped the drama several rungs. Looking like Carrie White, Michaels lucked his way into eliminating Christian and Jericho before Orton ended the miracle run after Batista interfered. Anyone who watched that match will tell you while catching their breath that it’s typical, by-the-book HBK, while exhaling, “And it’s f–king incredible.”

Sunday night, Ziggler was in the same predicament, with some wholly moving twists.

In the match to determine whether The Authority would be vanquished or whether some upper-midcard babyfaces would be fired instead, Ziggler, once canon fodder so far wedged into the sole-grooves of WWE’s shoe, was the last hope for the good guys. This was especially shocking, given that the usual Superman, John Cena, had been disposed of through Big Show’s annual heel turn midway through the bout. Across from a weary (but not bloody, per Mattel’s humble invective) Ziggler were Seth Rollins, Kane, and Luke Harper. Alas, it’s a parallel.

Knowing that only Cena could take out the 82nd Airborne without assistance, the St. Louis crowd began looking for the run-in. Given that Randy Orton was recently spurned by the heels, and that the Gateway City is Orton’s home, the natives earnestly chanted for him while Ziggler was bounced around by the corporate ladder. Not a good sign when you’re so far down the caste, fans believe more in the savior than the worker.

Then it happened: Ziggler won over the crowd. Repeated kickouts, subtle appeals through relaying of agony and exhaustion, and the fans were pulling for Ziggler to complete the comeback. If Daniel Bryan didn’t belong in Ziggler’s generation, I’d say that Dolph usurped the underdog schtick from him.

There weren’t any YES chants, but the fans popped fierce when Ziggler downed Kane cleanly with the Zig Zag. The cheers were louder when Dolph managed to roll up Harper and rid him from the bout. JBL was angrily stunned. Michael Cole, in a rare moment of intense focus, sold Ziggler as a warrior, running on empty for the sake of his job. Ziggler and Rollins engaged in a tremendous series of near falls in the lead-up to the Sports Entertainment Finish, well-executed and welcome for all of its convolution.

‘Holy crap, it’s Sting!’ will trump ‘holy crap, Dolph pulled it off!’ when panning for website clicks, but Ziggler’s story is needed long-term. The match has absolutely made Ziggler, Sting’s deus ex machina help or not. WWE has needed organic heroes more than it’s needed accurate dates on its WWE Network content. Punk said see ya, Bryan’s out long-term, Ambrose is there if they truly want him, and Roman Reigns’ biggest feud may be the one he’s having with the teleprompter.

Ziggler was dead, an afterthought. His outspokenness had cancelled out his world-class athleticism, and if a PPV in 2013 or 2014 passed by without him, nobody blinked. His demotion was accepted; his scripted wins these days more startling than appreciated. Whoever shook their head in the office and said, ‘wait, why aren’t we doing MORE with Dolph?’ may be a one-eyed-prophet in the land of the blind, but that one eye understands the man’s value.

I’d argue that Ziggler’s survival trumps Bryan’s WrestleMania wins. We all knew that Bryan was getting those victories as an apology for a winter’s worth of short-sighted booking, and angry fans weren’t to be denied. Ziggler’s rise from fodder is more notable because in less than 20 minutes, he won over the crowd that wanted Orton, and busted his ass for each ounce of renewed appreciation.

Writing out of Hunter and Stephanie aside, this is why we all loved last night’s match. We all believed because Dolph Ziggler made us believe. Shawn Michaels chuckles knowingly.

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WWE Survivor Series: General Thoughts on a Semi-Decent Event

November 24, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

At least the ending was something to remember. STING IS HERE!

I am purposely staying away from the main event match of the night. Too much to comprehend and I want to pay the impact of Sting appearing in St. Louis its proper respect.

By the way – All Hail Dolph Ziggler.

Here are some of my thoughts on the other matches at the pay-per-view… hopefully the WWE will learn to make the WWE World Champion at a PPV at some point soon.

As if it wasn’t obvious, the fans of the WWE got a taste of the first match for the TLC pay-per-view event to close out 2014.

Frankly, it is one of the best moves the WWE could make to finalize an up and down year of professional wrestling. Ambrose and Wyatt stole the show last night, in my opinion.

Wyatt vs. Ambrose might be the closest thing we have seen to a Buzz Sawyer/Tommy Rich slug fest since the two destroyed Atlanta back in the early 1980s. The feud between Wyatt and Ambrose is what hardcore wrestling should be. Ambrose and Wyatt are the perfect combination of oil and vinegar mixed with some pepper to add a splash of change.

But while other “oddities” in wrestling have been good for business, the aggression between these two superstars is worth a ticket, it will not lead either one to a title any time soon.

Not to worry, the greatest oddity of my generation – Kevin Sullivan – did not win a world title in his career either.

Known as the heel “Boston Battler”, Sullivan’s “devil worshiping” gimmick started during this time. In CWF he became associated with “Maniac” Mark Lewin (Purple Haze), Bob Roop, The Lock and Luna Vachon amongst others as the Army of Darkness. Sullivan split his time with International Championship Wrestling and brought the devil-worshiping gimmick there, along with Lewin and Roop. He had the Fallen Angel as his valet, who later became known as Woman. Sullivan was the top heel in ICW when the company first went national and had noted feuds with Austin Idol, Superstar Billy Graham, Bruiser Brody, Joe Savoldi and Blackjack Mulligan.

His cult-like following and his “pure evil” in his voice and his ability was the perfect foil for the Dusty Rhodes led early 1980s savior of professional wrestling angle.

Now that he is on his own, will Wyatt jump through the minutiae and finally take a stab at the WWE World Title? By the same token, will Ambrose jump into the title picture (especially if Seth Rollins claims the title with his MITB contract) or will he become another hardcore legend?

MIZDOW FOR LIFE

I did not particularly like the tag team match which led to The Miz and Damien Mizdow claiming the WWE Tag Team Titles, but I love the angle that is soon to happen between the Title holders.

Finally, Mizdow (or Sandow) will split and the birth of a feud that could help save their careers. I have been waiting for Sandow to become a headliner. While this feud may not lead to that, it may finally put Sandow over as a viable face in the company.

I have always thought of Sandow as a bit of Nick Bockwinkle, a touch of Lanny Paffo and a sprinkle of Randy Savage. That’s some pretty high praise, but if the feud does come about, Sandow will get over huge with the WWE Universe.

SISTERLY LOVE

It appears the WWE rumors may be correct of a potential AJ Lee retirement. But what was more important than a squash match between Nikki Bella and Lee was the fact Brie Bella seemed to be cheering her sister on. Hopefully, that is a plow which will lead to a Sister vs. Sister Match for the WWE Divas Title.

The fans will finally get the dream matchup they have wanted for some time.

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Lucha Underground is Worth Your Time

November 24, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Lucha Underground (originally named Lucha Uprising) is a new professional wrestling series produced by United Artists Media (Mark Burnett – Survivor) and it every Wednesday for one hour on the newer El Rey Network.

El Rey is a small network seen roughly in 40 million homes. The debut show saw roughly 8,000 viewers, with an average now of between 14,000 and 29,000 viewers. For a small network, those numbers still seem very low.

This new Mexican pro wrestling style based series debuted at the end of October and features for World Wrestling Entertainment and the defunct World Championship Wrestling stars like Chavo Guerrero, Konnan, Jr. John Morrison (Wrestling in Lucha Underground as Johnny Mundo) and Big Ryck (formally Ezekiel Jackson in WWE and Rycklon in his short run in Impact Wrestling).

Behind the announce table you have former WWE interviewer Matt Stryker and former WCW wrestler Vampiro. Lucha Underground also features some of the best wrestlers from Mexico and the independent scene. The first series of television tapings were filmed in Boyle Heights, CA in what is called The Temple. From what I read, the fans in attendance were “extras” told how to cheer and when to cheer. When watching the crowd you can tell this might very well be the case.

Despite the low ratings, sometimes rookie type announcing, cheesy back stage skits that look like a cheap Spanish soap opera, it’s the in ring product itself that I am impressed with and refreshing to watch wrestling talent that I have never heard of before. Although, the commentary doesn’t feel force scripted like WWE or TNA.   Overall Stryker and Vampiro are a unique team.

Some of the production quality I do like is the showing scenes of the city and the outside of the building before taking the fans inside The Temple – Ring of Honor and Impact Wrestling take notice as it is the little things such as this that can add improvement to the opening of your shows and adds a more of a big league feel to the show. For some, this may not matter all that much, but for me it makes the show look and feel like I’m watching a big time NFL game. However, I do like the above the ring shots which TNA has done, but the Lucha Underground production crew over exposes and over uses the above the ring shots way too much, so after just a few weeks, it doesn’t feel different anymore.

For a wrestling show that is produced by a reality television series group, the production overall isn’t bad, and with Chavo Guerrero on the production crew, the production part of the show one would hope would continue to see improvement overall in time as the show progresses.

If you are used to the WWE, Impact Wrestling, and/or ROH style of wrestling, or if you are looking for something unique and different, and you are able to get the El Rey network with the your cable or satellite provider, I would encourage you to give Lucha Underground a chance.

If you can get past the hokey stuff, and focus on the in ring action, I think you will be pleased. Until Impact Wrestling returns in January 2015 and we see what changes they make, Lucha Underground and ROH has more wrestling in one hour of each their programs that the five hours WWE has with Raw and SmackDown.

Yes, Lucha Underground a lot at times feels low budget – like a cheap 1980’s Spanish bad guy vs. good guy movie, but with wrestling in the mix, however, if you have been turned off by the current boring WWE product, don’t have a Sinclair station in your market and may not have Destination America as a part of your cable or satellite package and you have the El Rey network, I would encourage you to give Lucha Underground a try.

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WWE Survivor Series 2014 Results: Sting Debuts, Team Cena Win

November 23, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

The WWE rewarded its free subscribers with one of the most memorable show finishes in years. The Survivor Series 2014 delivered with an outstanding main-event and one of the biggest debuts in years. Sting is finally in and the questions surrounding his WrestleMania plans have been answered.

This one-match, one-angle show delivered a memorable evening with fans coming away counting down the hours until RAW. The long road to WrestleMania 31 became clearer at Survivor Series and while there are still plenty of questions, we are finally starting to get some pieces of the Mania puzzle. I don’t think there has been a show this memorable since WrestleMania and it will be exciting to see where things go from here starting tomorrow night.

The show opened up with Vince McMahon dropping a “bombshell.” McMahon told Triple H and Stephanie McMahon that if their team lost, not only would they be out of power, but only one man could bring them back. Vince told them that man was John Cena. Cena told them that when his team wins they will never be in power again. Hunter did not look happy at all.

The Authority are out! Team Cena survived to throw the Authority out of power. This was a real hot match and far exceeded most expectations fans had going into the event. The match went close to an hour which probably hasn’t happened in a WWE main-event in years. The match started with The Big Show eliminating Mark Henry within seconds with a knockout punch. The crowd went nuts. They set up a big spot early for Luke Harper and Erick Rowan to lock up but Harper tagged right out. Ryback and Rusev set up a big lockup for Rusev’s first appearance in the match. The fans really got behind Ryback when he clotheslined Rusev. The match broke out into a big brawl at this point. The fans were great and really made this match seem like something special. Rusev eliminated Ryback to even up the sides. Rollins took a backdrop over the top rope onto about eight guys. Rusev dumped Ziggler onto the rest of the pile. Rusev missed a big dive onto Dolph and went through the announcer’s table. Rusev was counted out after missing the dive as Ziggler rolled back into the ring to make the count. Rowan and Harper finally got into it after about thirty minutes. Kane broke it up after Rowan hit a spin kick on Harper. Harper hit a clothesline on Rowan after Rollins distracted Harper and pinned him. The Big Show turned on John Cena (again) and KO’d him setting him up for the pin. Seth Rollins pinned him and eliminated the captain. The Big Show walked out at that point leaving Dolph Ziggler to fight Kane, Rollins, and Harper all by himself. Ziggler fought back to eliminate Kane to take it down to a 2 on 1 match. Ziggler eliminated Harper bringing it down to Rollins and Ziggler. Ziggler really made himself a star tonight. Ziggler kept fighting back for near falls on Rollins, including a close small package and a DDT. Ziggler hit the Zig Zag and was about to get the win before Triple H pulled the referee out of the ring. Ziggler hit another one but there was no referee to count. Triple H attacked the next referee that came out and finally took his jacket off. Hunter began pounding on Ziggler. Hunter hit the pedigree on Ziggler. The lights went out and Sting walked out on the ramp (with some corny music unfortunately). Hunter just stared. The fans loved it and gave him the reaction you’d expect. Sting took out referee Scott Armstrong. Sting and Hunter squared off. The fans all chanted “Sting” and “This is awesome!” Sting laid Hunter out with a Scorpion Death Drop. Sting then put Ziggler on top of Rollins and walked out. Ziggler got the three-count and the win for Team Cena and what has to be one of the most exciting WWE matches of 2014. Michael Cole called it the most historic moment in Survivor Series history (hey remember that 1997 match. The Authority is done…well at least until tomorrow night. Cena came out to congratulate Ziggler at the end. Stephanie and Triple H sat in the ring as the crowd chanted “Goodbye.”

This is the kind of cliffhanger ending fans have been waiting to see for months on WWE special events. I don’t think it’s a big secret to say that the WWE has been somewhat stale over the last several months. Sting’s debut, Dolph with a push, and the Authority seemingly out of power for the first time in over a year will give the WWE the fresh programming it desperately needed. The show ended with the fans yelling “You got fired” and Stephanie having a temper tantrum.

I think it is safe to say that we know our WrestleMania direction. It looks like it will be Sting vs. Triple H at Mania which is what it is. I am sure it will be a decent match and it will definitely be hot, but it is hardly the classic Undertaker match fans hoped to see Sting get at Mania. Regardless, you have Sting on Mania and the fans have wanted it for years. It could still happen with Sting vs. Hunter at the Rumble but I wouldn’t bank on it.

Bray Wyatt defeated Dean Ambrose by disqualification. Wyatt dared Ambrose to hit him with a chair and he did. Ambrose was disqualified for it. Ambrose proceeded to beat the hell out of Wyatt, including dropping a flying elbow onto Wyatt through a table and giving him a DDT on a chair. Ambrose left him laid out in a pile of hardcore trash from tables to chairs. Ambrose climbed a ladder and stood over Wyatt as his music played. They announced a TLC rematch at TLC in three weeks.

I have said it before and I’ll say it again. Ambrose should be the focus of the company right now. He has a unique charisma to himself that is second only to Brock Lesnar. The focus will be on Roman Reigns in a few weeks and I think that is a big mistake. This guy is the future and he should be groomed for the WrestleMania moment, not Reigns or anyone else in my opinion.

Another piece of news coming out of the show is that live on the WWE Network Monday night following RAW will be a podcast with Steve Austin. Austin will be hosting the podcast and his guest will be Vince McMahon. I think it’s long overdue that the WWE get the Stone Cold podcast on the WWE Network. I love the ingenuity here of debuting it with Vince McMahon. It should be a great show.

Brie Bella seemingly turned heel and the rumors about AJ Lee leaving after Survivor Series appear to be true (although the latest reports indicate she’s staying). Nikki Bella defeated AJ to win the WWE Divas title in about a minute. Brie wound up kissing AJ which distracted her enough for Nikki to swoop in, scoop her up for the Rack Attack and pin her for the title. Brie had a big smile on her face and was celebrating with Nikki. They referenced AJ doing the same thing to Daniel Bryan during his match with Sheamus a couple of years ago at WrestleMania so maybe Nikki is a face? Who the hell knows! Hey, thank goodness that terrible angle is over but this turn made no sense. It also won’t do Daniel Bryan much good when he returns.

Another piece of news coming out of the show is that live on the WWE Network December 1 following RAW will be a podcast with Steve Austin. Austin will be hosting the podcast and his guest will be Vince McMahon. I think it’s long overdue that the WWE get the Stone Cold podcast on the WWE Network. I love the ingenuity here of debuting it with Vince McMahon. It should be a great show. How coincidental that the podcast airs on December 1, the day after all of the free memberships end.

Full WWE Survivor Series 2014 results and winners…
Team Cena (John Cena, Dolph Ziggler, Big Show, Erick Rowan and Ryback) defeated Team Authority (Seth Rollins, Kane, Mark Henry, Rusev and Luke Harper) in a traditional Survivor Series elimination tag team match; if Team Authority loses, they will no longer be in power. If Team Cena loses, all team members will be fired from WWE.
Nikki Bella defeated AJ for the WWE Divas Championship
Adam Rose and the Bunny defeated Titus O’Neil and Heath Slater
Bray Wyatt defeated Dean Ambrose via DQ
The Miz and Damien Mizdow defeated Gold and Stardust (c) vs. The Usos (Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso) vs. Los Matadores (Diego and Fernando)  in a Fatal 4-Way tag team match to win the WWE Tag Team Championship
Alicia Fox, Emma, Naomi and Natalya defeated Paige, Cameron, Layla and Summer Rae in a Divas Traditional Survivor Series elimination tag team match
Jack Swagger defeated Cesaro
Fandango defeated Justin Gabriel

The Randy Savage Story DVD

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The WWE History Of The Big Show Turns

November 23, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

The Big Show turned yet once again at Survivor Series, taking out captain John Cena and aligning with the Authority. A look back at Show’s untrustworthy history tells you that Cena and every one on his team should have expected it. You can’t trust the Big Show!

The turns of The Big Show have become something of a running joke among longtime WWE fans. One week he is on the side of good fighting evil and the next he is aligned with the corporation out to destroy John Cena. You never know which Big Show you are going to get which is why I thought it would be fun with the help of Google and Wikiepedia to look back on all of The Big Show’s turn during his WWE career.

All in all I counted over 20 turns here although to be fair some of them weren’t full-fledged turns yet for the sake of this list they are being counted. 21 turns since 1999 is amazing although after RAW I’d have to guess that Kane would be honing in on this record. Let’s have some fun and relive the roller coaster ride of The Big Show’s emotions.

– A few months after “Big Nasty” entered the WWE he wound up in a feud with Mick Foley. Following the feud Nasty KO’d Vince McMahon and joined the Union to fight the Corporation.

– Show winds up turning heel again four months later and forms a tag team with The Undertaker feuding with Kane and X-Pac

– Less than three months later Show turns face during the infamous “Big Show Father is Dead” storyline and feuds with Prince Albert and the Big Bossman.

– Three months after Show turns face he turns heel again at the Royal Rumble where he wound up getting into it with The Rock. Show was eliminated by The Rock in the Rumble which started a feud between the two.

– Immediately after WrestleMania Show starts doing those goofy impersonations of other wrestlers (remember the Showster?) which of course turned him babyface. He wound up feuding with Shane McMahon.

– Two months after losing to Shane at Judgment Day Show turned heel again. Show acted as if he was going to go after Shane McMahon but instead wound up attacking The Undertaker. Show and Shane formed “The Conspiracy” with Chris Benoit, Kurt Angle, and Edge and Christian.

– Show turns babyface again, pledging loyalty to the WWE throughout the Invasion angle and feuded specifically with Shane once again. He also formed the Show Gunns with Billy Gunn.

– Show turns heel again right after WrestleMania X-8. Show attacks Steve Austin and joins (or re-joins) the n.W.o.

– The Big Show returns after a lengthy injury-related absence and turns babyface once again after choosing to wrestle Kurt Angle at No Mercy 2004.

– The Big Show is drafted over to ECW and becomes the top heel in the company. Show attacks Tajiri, Super Crazy, and the F.B.I. at One Night Stand and winds up winning the title after Paul Heyman turns on Rob Van Dam.

– The Big Show seemingly turned babyface when a slimmer Show returned at No Way Out in 2008 only to turn back heel immediately by attacking Rey Mysterio thus turning twice in one night.

– Show winds up turning babyface over the course of the next few weeks when WWE fans reject Floyd Mayweather Jr. as the babyface in their feud. Show becomes something of a hero representing the WWE. Show officially turns babyface right after WrestleMania and begins feuding with the Great Khali.

– Show goes heel again in a few months after aligning himself with Vickie Guerrero in her feud against The Undertaker. Show attacked Undertaker at Unforgiven and began interfering in his matches.

– Show teases another babyface turn when he winds up with a spot on Team RAW. Show actually winds up turning on Team RAW to reveal he was a SmackDown guy all along. So in a sense he never really turned since he was a heel in the place.

– In April 2010 The Big Show KO’s The Miz after they lost the unified tag team championship which immediately turns him babyface (of course!)

– The Big Show returns after a lengthy absence in May 2012 with an “ironclad” contract as the henchmen of John Laurinaitis and begins a feud with John Cena.

– In March 2013 The Big Show helps Randy Orton and Sheamus against The Shield turning him somewhat babyface although this was never a full-fledged turn.

- Show “turns heel” (if you consider his alliance with Sheamus and Orton an turn) and KO’s Orton and Sheamus after losing a six-man tag team match to The Shield at WrestleMania 29. Show was mad nobody tagged him in which if you think about it actually makes him a bit of a babyface.

– Show returns from another lengthy absence and continues his feud with The Shield and thus makes a full-fledged babyface turn aligning with Mark Henry and RVD. Show and Henry were scheduled to have a long run as a team here until Henry got hurt.

– Show turned twice in one night once again in October when he KO’s Daniel Bryan at Battleground only to turn around and turn babyface once again by KO’ing Randy Orton.

In other words don’t trust this man WWE Universe! He’ll be with Steph and Triple H before you know it.

Big Show officially made his babyface turn by teaming with Randy Orton and Sheamus vs. The Shield at WrestleMania 29.

Update: The Big Show turns on Team Cena at the Survivor Series, KO’ing Cena and walking off of the team.

The Randy Savage Story DVD

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WWE SmackDown Results and November 21 Recap

November 23, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Michael Cole is in the ring, and he welcomes Triple H to the ring, who comes down alone. Cole points out Survivor Series being two days away, then mentions the stipulations for Team Cena vs. Team Authority, laid out by Mr. McMahon. Does Trips realize this could be the final night he is able to conduct an interview like this? Trips warns him to pick his questions carefully, otherwise this could be Cole’s last interview ever. Cole agrees and points out the fact that the WWE Universe loathes him. They can’t stand him or Steph. Can Trips imagine the euphoria if Team Authority loses?

He points out a bunch of sports moments, including the “Miracle on Ice”, then asks if Trips realizes it would be like those moments. Trips says the Universe’s opinions don’t matter. Without the fans, there would be no WWE, but without the Authority, there are no fans. He and his wife make decisions every day based on the best interest of everybody in the WWE Universe. But like little kids, their opinion of him when he makes those decisions is absolutely irrelevant. Cole says it’s statements like that are why many people are speculating that it’s for the Authority’s legacy, that their egos are so out of control that they’ve completely lost sight of the task at hand. Because of these egos, they can’t lead, and that leadership is being questioned heading into Survivor Series. Cole then asks Trips to address these rumors. Trips says that he’s got a bit of a secret. He gets in Cole’s face and says life is a marathon, not a sprint. He got the nickname “The Cerebral Assassin” during the Attitude Era, the greatest era in history. During that time, the talent was unbelievable: Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, the Undertaker, Steve Austin, the Rock, Triple H…they were the elite of the elite. Now, some could argue that some of those guys were more popular or bigger stars than Trips. What’s not an argument is that they are all gone, and he’s still here. The truth is they could never last, because he’s smarter than all of them. He’s always been smarter, and that means the Authority always wins. They are the constant, and they will always be here, like it or not. Cole says that, if the Authority loses Sunday, he’ll be gone, too. If that happens, what will happen on RAW when the Authority is no longer in charge. Trips says Vince McMahon is the greatest mind that has ever existed in wrestling. Without Vince, the WWE does not exist. He did it because he was smarter than everyone else. He outlasted them all. All of this is because of him, and WWE exists because of him. It’s not ego or bragging when he says there are two people who can take Vince’s place, that can do what he does: one is his wife, and Cole is standing in the ring with the other one. Without them, this place has no future. You take them out of the occasion, he gives WWE max 2 years. That’s not going to happen. If it does, it’ll be about 3 months before everyone is begging them to come back. Without them, WWE is a sinking ship. It has no future. Cole asks what we can expect if Team Authority wins on Sunday. Trips calls that an interesting question. When they win, what happens on RAW? He points out Cole’s interview with John Cena on Wednesday when Cole asked him the same question. Trips wants to show the footage, but first, he wants Team Cena to hear the answer, then he wants them to hear his response to that question.

Team Cena, led by Ziggler, make their way out. Cena is nowhere to be found. Cole mentions the interview again, and he wants to play back a part where he asked Cena if he feels responsible for the fate of his team. We go to the footage, and Cena says he’s given that a lot of thought. He knows he’s asking the team to make a leap of faith and put their livelihood on the line. The Authority will hold that thought with vengeance, and that’s why Team Cena has to win. Back to the ring, Trips mocks Cena, then tells Team Cena that they better hope Cena’s feelings cover all of that. On RAW, after Team Cena has lost, every single one of Team Cena are fired. All the members look concerned, with Erick Rowan staring at his mask.

Rusev and Lana come out and walk their way through Team Cena and down to the ring.

MATCH 1: WWE UNITED STATES CHAMPION RUSEV (W/LANA) VS. DOLPH ZIGGLER (NON-TITLE)
Ziggler ducks a charge, but Ruzev grabs him, lifts him up and knocks him to the floor with a forearm. Rusev rolls outside, but Ziggler is back in. Rusev misses a charge, and Ziggler starts pelting him with rights before running into a back elbow. Rusev stomps Ziggler in the face, then tosses him to the corner for some kicks. He comes back with some shots of his own, ending with a dropkick. Rusev shakes it off and nails him with kneelifts. Ziggler low-bridges Rusev, then hits him with a hotshot and a dropkick that sends him into the barricade from the apron. Outside, Ziggler goes on the attack and goes for a whip into the steps. Rusev reverses, sending Ziggler back-first into them. Commercials.

Back from the break, Rusev has Ziggler in a head-and-arm choke. Rusev counters with a jawbreaker, nails a back elbow, avoids a corner charge and rolls Rusev up for 2. He goes for a rocker dropper, and Rusev catches him in a powerbomb. Ziggler counters that into a sunset flip for 2. He charges at Rusev again, Rusev catches him and goes for a fall-away slam. Ziggler lands on his feet and nails a superkick for 2. Ziggler hits a corner splash, then another and goes into some mounted punches. Rusev shoves him off and hits a spinning heel kick. Rusev goes for a powerslam, but Ziggler escapes. He goes for the Zig-Zag, but Rusev hangs onto the top rope. He turns around and hits Ziggler with a vertical splash, stomps Ziggler in the back and looks for the Accolade. Ziggler escapes and hits the Zig-Zag. He crawls over to Rusev for the pin, but only gets 2. Ziggler misses the rocker dropper and he goes for a leaping DDT. Rusev tosses him off. Ziggler lands on his feet, but is then immediately dropped by a jumping side kick for 3.

WINNER: RUSEV.

After the match, Rusev stomps Ziggler in the back and applies the Accolade for a few moments.

We see Corporate Kane on his phone in the office, when he’s interrupted by someone. Kane is glad this person is here, because they have important matters to discuss. It cuts over to Cesaro, and he says he always comes when the Authority calls. Kane says that, although Cesaro is not officially on Team Authority, his loyalty has not gone unnoticed, and it will be rewarded when Team Cena is eliminated. Cesaro likes that, and talks about embarassing Cena this past week on RAW. Cena thought Cesaro was joining Team Cena. Kane calls that funny, but what wasn’t funny was when Erick Rowan joined Cena’s flock of misguided sheep. So tonight, he wants Cesaro to do one more favor for the Authority: slaughter the lamb that is Rowan. Cesaro agrees and says, “Long live the Authority. Cesaro out.”

MATCH 2: THE MIZ AND DAMIEN MIZDOW VS. LOS MATADORES (DIEGO AND FERNANDO, W/EL TORITO)
We get an inset promo from Miz. He’s blathering about how he’ll win the WWE Tag Team titles at Survivor Series. The Usos, and Gold & Stardust are both on commentary. Miz and a Matador start, with Miz applying an arm wringer. The Matador, Diego, counters with his own, then gets in a roll-up for 2. He nails a dropkick and tags in Fernando, who hits a tope con hilo. The two crisscross before Fernando nails Mizdow. Miz nails Fernando with a clothesline, then applies a rear chinlock. Fernando comes back with a jawbreaker. Miz goes for the Reality Check, but Fernando shoves him off. Mizdow tags himself in and looks for the Reality Check and hits it before kipping up. Miz tags himself back in and he goes for the SKF. Fernando escapes and tags in Diego. Diego hits a springboard chop and a spinning headbutt. He connects with a second one, ducks a clothesline and hits a spinning headscissors before clotheslining Miz to the floor. Diego goes for a baseball slide and misses. Miz looks to throw Diego into the Usos, but Fernando reverses. Mizdow sees this and throws himself into the tag champs. Back in the ring, Diego hits a top rope cross-body for 3.

WINNERS: LOS MATADORES.

Dean Ambrose comes down to the ring, and he supposedly has a survival kit for his match with Bray Wyatt on Sunday. He says he’s not your average WWE superstar. They say he’s eccentric and has a screw loose. That’s fine, and he doesn’t care. He’s a survivor, and he will continue to survive no matter who or what stands in his way. He tells a story about when he was a kid. His mom handed him a $20-bill and told him to buy some cigarettes and scratch tickets. He’s walking down the street, and he runs into some older guys who want to know what he’s carrying him. They rough him up and take the money, leaving his mom empty-handed. He told his mom what happened. She took out a pair of brass knuckles and told him to not let it ever happen again. The knucks were his survival kit, and he takes that survival kit with him everywhere he goes. He’s a walking, talking survival kit, and at Survivor Series, he’ll break Wyatt’s nose and teeth. He’s going to bounce his fist off Wyatt’s skull, and he’s not going to stop until his knuckles bleed. If Wyatt wants to survive, he needs the ability to run. Wyatt’s said a lot of things, and some of it was true. He got under Ambrose’s skin, and that’s bad for him. Wyatt’s talking to a grown man. Ambrose is the hunter, and Wyatt is the prey. At Survivor Series, Wyatt will be stalked, tormented and ultimately put down.

Wyatt appears on the big screen in a cage and has a question: is this what it was like? Is this how you remember him? Locked in a cage, like an animal? When Ambrose looks at him, is he reminded of his dad? His dad gave him life, then left him alone to rot in it. Wyatt came here to remind Ambrose the apple does not fall far from the tree. This cage is Ambrose’s future, trapped in a prison of his own design. He’ll be begging for freedom he won’t receive, praying to a deity that doesn’t exist. The walls will close in, but it didn’t have to be like this. He and Ambrose could have ruled the world, but Ambrose changed all that. Instead, Wyatt will leave this cell, then he’ll leave Ambrose drowning in a pool of his own filth, just like daddy did. It will never end in here.

I really can’t do Wyatt’s half of that segment justice. He’s just too damn good.

MATCH 3: BRIE BELLA (W/NIKKI BELLA) VS. WWE DIVAS CHAMPION AJ LEE (NON-TITLE)
Lee comes out dressed as Nikki, mocking her mannerisms in the process. Lee is a far better-looking Nikki than Nikki herself. The two lock-up, and Lee breaks it before ducking a clothesline. She continues to mock Nikki until Brie takes her down with a waistlock. Lee breaks it and applies a side headlock. Brie tries to counter, but Lee stays on top of her. Brie counters with a headscissors, but Lee breaks it and hits a kick. Brie comes back with a shot and throws Lee to the corner before Lee hits another kick and slams her head into the buckles. She bounces Brie’s head off her chest, then whips her down. Lee mounts her, takes out the fake breast she had in her top, then hits Brie in the face with it. Brie comes back with a half-Boston crab, but Lee gets a rope-break. Lee locks in a guillotine, which Brie breaks by throwing her into the buckles. Lee hits a pair of knees out of the corner and a clothesline. A neckbreaker gets 2, and Brie comes back with a dropkick. She hits a running knee against the ropes, then hits a missile dropkick from the second rope for 2. Nikki jumps on the apron and screams for Brie to finish it. Lee shoves Brie into Nikki, then rolls her up in a schoolgirl for 3.

WINNER: AJ LEE.

After the match, Nikki gives Brie one of the weakest shoves I’ve ever seen in my life as Lee celebrates on the stage.

MATCH 4: CESARO VS. ERICK ROWAN
Now that Rowan and Luke Harper are no longer a team, it’s time to give them their own distinct entrance themes. Cesaro slaps the sheep mask off Rowan, then starts nailing him with shots. Rowan grabs him by the neck and throws him to the floor. Outside, Rowan continues the assault before rolling Cesaro back into the ring. Cesaro hits a shoulder, then nails a forearm before looking for a suplex back into the ring. Rowan blocks it and comes back in, but Cesaro hits him with a dropkick. He nails a few more shots before Rowan catches him in a bearhug. Cesaro counters into a sunset flip, but Rowan powers him up by his neck. They trade shots until Rowan hits a bodyslam. On the apron, Cesaro hits a hotshot, then jumps on Rowan’s back for a sleeper. Rowan falls into the buckles to break it, and Cesaro kicks him away. Cesaro goes up top, and Rowan launches him back down to the mat. He hits a running shoulderblock, then drops Cesaro with a pumphandle backbreaker. He picks Cesaro up with an Argentinian backbreaker and gets the submission win.

WINNER: ERICK ROWAN.

Luke Harper walks down to the ring. Rowan challenges him to step in, but Rowan changes his mind at the last minute…then changes it again…and again.

Renee Young is standing by with Team Cena (and Erick Rowan is playing with a Rubik’s Cube for some reason). She asks for their reaction to what Triple H stated earlier tonight. Big Show says what Trips said made all of them think. They could lose their jobs. But so can Trips and Steph. Trips’ tactics didn’t have the intended effect. They’re not cowards, and they want to rid the WWE of the Authority. They’re not going to hide. They’re in this far, and they’re going to finish it. Ryback says actions have consequences. He knew he was taking a risk by joining Team Cena, and now that his job is one the line. That just makes “The Big Guy” hungrier. Tonight, he and Show are going to feed on Corporate Kane and Seth Rollins. On Sunday, the Authority’s empire is going to crumble, courtesy of Team Cena and Team Ryback. Dolph Ziggler says the Authority has put him through the ringer week after week. On Monday, he lost the IC title. It wasn’t just his; he shared that title with the WWE Universe. So, is he afraid of losing his job? There’s nothing to fear when you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. They have a chance to put the Authority out of power, and he’s not going to back down now. Young asks if Rowan has anything to add. He simply says “Freedom”. The rest of the team repeat it and put their fists together.

MATCH 5: SETH ROLLINS AND CORPORATE KANE (W/ROLLINS SECURITY) VS. THE BIG SHOW AND RYBACK
The ring announcer informs us Erick Rowan and Dolph Ziggler are banned from ringside before the opening bell. Ryback and Rollins start, with Ryback powering Rollins to the corner. He whips Rollins hard across the ring, and Rollins rolls to the floor. Back in the ring, Rollins hits a few punches, then clubs Ryback across the back. Ryback comes back with a Thesz press, then he grabs Rollins by the ears and slams his head into the mat. In the corner, Show tags in and hits a body blow before landing a big chop to the chest. Rollins gets whipped back into the corner, where Show hits him with another chop. Show drops him with a headbutt, then walks across his stomach. In the corner again, Ryback tags in and hits a chop of his own. In the adjacent corner, Ryback slams Rollins’ head into the buckle. Rollins comes back with chops, but Ryback no-sells them. He blocks a kick and shoves Rollins to the mat. Rollins gets whipped across the ring, blocks a charge and comes off the middle rope. Ryback catches him and hits a swinging powerslam. He calls for Shell Shocked, but instead boots an incoming Kane to the floor. Rollins charges in, and Ryback backdrops him to the floor as well. Triple H’s music hits, and he walks down to ringside, followed by the rest of Team Authority. Commercials.

Back from the break, Show is in control of Kane, hitting him with a bodyslam. Show lands a big elbow for 2, then sends Kane into the ropes. Kane counters with a DDT, then tags in Rollins, who repeatedly kicks Show in the face before hitting a dropkick for 2. Show kicks out with authority, but Rollins is quickly back in the ring. He hits a few more kicks, then drops Show with a right. Kane tags in, and they take turns putting the boots to Show before Kane hits an elbow for 2. Kane applies a rear chinlock, but Show eventually powers up to his feet and hits a back suplex. Rollins and Ryback both tag in. Ryback hits a forearm to the chest and a back-body drop. He hits Rollins with a gorilla press into a powerslam, then calls for the Meat Hook. Outside, Team Authority attack Show, leading to the DQ.

WINNERS VIA DISQUALIFICATION: THE BIG SHOW AND RYBACK.

After the match, Rollins tries for the curb stomp on Ryback, but Ryback avoids it and goes for Shell Shocked. He drops Rollins when Jamie Noble tries to interfere. Ryback puts Noble down, then hits Rollins with a standing spinebuster. Joey Mercury gets in and attacks Ryback from behind, with Noble joining in. They beat him down in the corner until Dolph Ziggler runs down and wipes them out. Luke Harper enters the ring and drops Ziggler with a big boot. Erick Rowan makes his way down now, boots Mark Henry on the floor, nails Rusev with a clothesline, then gets in the ring with Harper. Harper screams at him, then offers a handshake. The distraction is enough for Kane to re-enter the ring and put Rowan down with a chokeslam. He turns around into a standing spinebuster from Ryback. Ryback turns around and gets dropped with a discus clothesline from Harper. Ziggler takes Harper down with a Zig-Zag. Rusev drops Ziggler with a jumping side kick. Henry then puts Ziggler down again with a World’s Strongest Slam. Triple H enters the ring, and Team Authority stomps everyone down. Show lets out a big scream from ringside and enters the ring. Team Authority try to beat him down as he enters the ring, but he tosses them all off. He starts hitting everyone with chops, then hits Rollins Security with a double chokeslam. Trips brings a chair into the ring, hits Show in the gut, then cracks it over his back. Rollins then hits Show with a curb stomp. Ryback gets the chair treatment, as does Ziggler. Show and Rowan get a few shots from the chair. Rusev picks Ziggler up, and Trips assaults him with the chair yet again. Rusev and Kane pick Ryback up, and Trips nails him in the back. Team Authority pick him up once more, and Trips screams in his face, asking if this is what he wanted. Team Cena is done. Trips then puts Ryback down once and for all with a Pedigree.

End of show.

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Surivor Series 2014 Contest: Win WWE Attitude Era Vol. 2 DVD

November 22, 2014 By: Category: Contests, WWE | Pro Wrestling

WWE Attitude Era Vol,. 2I am giving away 1 copy of the WWE Attitude Era Vol. 2 DVD this Sunday night during the Survivor Series. Winning is very easy but you have to be on Twitter to do it. It’s as easy as a Stone Cold Stunner on Mr. McMahon!

Follow me @CamelClutchBlog and look for the contest tweet when the Survivor Series begins. You must RT the tweet and give me your prediction on the winner of the main-event. Just RT the tweet with either Team Authority or Team Cena to enter. That’s it! It’s that simple but you have to be on Twitter to enter.

Look for this tweet – “RT & Follow to win a #WWE Attitude Era 2 DVD set! Predict which team wins the #SurvivorSeries main-event?”. Just make sure enter the winning team when you RT to enter.

I will pick a winner at random. Every entry that contains a prediction is eligible to win, even if you get the winning team wrong. All you have to do to play is participate. So make sure you are following me between now and Survivor Series, look for the tweet around 8 PM/EST and give me your winner. I’ll announce a winning tweet right after the event on Twitter.

This contest is restricted to U.S. residents only. This contest is not sponsored in any way by the WWE. Good luck!

Read my the WWE Attitude Era Vol. 2 DVD review right here on the CCB!

DISC 1

Bare Essentials

Miss Slammy Swimsuit Competition
Sunny vs. Sable vs. Marlena vs. The Funkettes
Slammy Awards * March 16, 1997

Owen Hart vs. Shawn Michaels
RAW * December 29, 1997

Bad Ass Dad

New Age Outlaws vs. Cactus Jack & Chainsaw Charlie
RAW * January 26, 1998

Intercontinental Championship Match
The Rock vs. Ken Shamrock
Royal Rumble * January 18, 1998

Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Mr. McMahon
RAW * April 13, 1998

Leather & Chains

Owen Hart & Legion of Doom vs. Triple H & New Age Outlaws
RAW * April 20, 1998

D-Generation X Takes New York
RAW * June 8, 1998

Falls Count Anywhere #1 Contenders Match for the WWE Championship
Mankind vs. “Kane”
RAW * July 6, 1998

Letting the Dogs Out

Bikini Contest
Sable vs. Jacqueline
Fully Loaded * July 26, 1998

Val Venis & Taka Michinoku vs. KaiEnTai
RAW * August 3, 1998

WWE Championship Match
Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Ken Shamrock
RAW * September 14, 1998

Boot Camp Match for Al Snow’s Contract
Al Snow vs. Sgt. Slaughter
RAW * September 21, 1998

Six-Man Elimination #1 Contenders Match for the European Championship
Edge vs. Gangrel vs. D’Lo Brown vs. Jeff Jarrett vs. Droz vs. Marc Mero
RAW * September 28, 1998

Extreme Name Change

WWE Championship Match
The Rock vs. X-Pac
RAW * November 23, 1998

DISC 2

Becoming a Pimp

Godfather & Val Venis vs. Mark Henry & DLo Brown
Rock Bottom * December 13, 1998

Triple H vs. Edge
RAW * January 11, 1999

Bloodbath

Kane’s Career on the Line
Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Kane
RAW * March 1, 1999

Hardcore Championship Match
Hardcore Holly vs. Bad Ass Billy Gunn
RAW * March 15, 1999

Wild and Crazy Guys

Handicap Match
The Big Show vs. Triple H & The Rock
RAW * April 5, 1999

Pimpin’ Ain’t Country

Intercontinental Championship Match
Goldust vs. Godfather
RAW * April 12, 1999

The Hardy Boyz vs. Edge & Christian
Shotgun Saturday Night * April 17, 1999

Casket Match
The Rock vs. Undertaker
RAW * May 17, 1999

Intercontinental Championship Match
Jeff Jarrett vs. Test
Sunday Night Heat * June 13, 1999

DISC 3

Drinking with the APA

Tag Team Championship Match
Acolytes vs. Kane & X-Pac
RAW * August 9, 1999

Sexual Chocolate

Mark Henry Sex Therapy Sessions

Valentine’s Day Delight

Mark Henry and Mae Young Get a Room
RAW * February 14, 2000

Triple Threat Match for the European Championship
Kurt Angle vs. Chris Jericho vs. Tazz
RAW * March 13, 2000

Behind Breaking the Walls

Intercontinental Championship Match
Chris Jericho vs. Kurt Angle
RAW * May 8, 2000

Eddie Guerrero vs. Dean Malenko
Sunday Night Heat * June 18, 2000

Intergender Tag Team Match
The Rock & Lita vs. Kurt Angle & Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley
SmackDown * August 24, 2000

Triple Threat Match for the Women’s Championship
Lita vs. Ivory vs. Jacqueline
Sunday Night Heat * September 17, 2000

Weak Stomach

Hardcore Championship Match
Gerald Brisco vs. Crash Holly
RAW * June 5, 2000

Evening Gown Match for the Hardcore Championship
Gerald Brisco vs. Pat Patterson
King of the Ring * June 25, 2000

Wanna Ride?

Intergender Tag Team Match
The Rock & Lita vs. Triple H & Trish Stratus
RAW * July 31, 2000

BLU-RAY EXCLUSIVES

The Undertaker Attends His Parents Funeral
RAW * April 20, 1998

#1 Contenders Match for the Tag Team Championship
Kane & Mankind vs. Owen Hart & The Rock
Sunday Night Heat * August 2, 1998

Golga vs. Marc Mero
RAW * August 3, 1998

Hardcore Championship Match
Al Snow vs. Road Dogg
RAW * January 4, 1999

Lumberjack Match
Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. The Rock
RAW * May 3, 1999

Gangrel & Christian vs. Droz & Prince Albert
Sunday Night Heat * May 16, 1999

WWE Championship Match
Triple H vs. Mr. McMahon
SmackDown * September 16, 1999

Mark Henry and Mae Young Double Date
RAW * December 27, 1999

The APA Opens Their Doors
RAW * January 31, 2000

Last Man Standing Match
Triple H vs. Chris Jericho
Fully Loaded * July 23, 2000

Sting Reportedly Set To Debut At WWE Survivor Series

November 22, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

The buzz for the WWE Survivor Series just got much bigger. A new report breaking over the last several hours reports that there is a major surprise lined up for the special event that immediately turns this must-miss event into a must-see.

PWInsider.com is reporting that the highly anticipated debut of Sting will take place at this Sunday’s Survivor Series in St. Louis. What the Stinger will be doing and who he will be paired with is pure speculation at this point. Although I think it is a safe bet that the angle will probably not have him wrestling on Sunday night.

Plenty of fans will probably agree that it is about time. Sting joined the WWE Universe several months ago, although nobody can quite pinpoint when he exactly signed his WWE contract. Many believed that Sting was purely working through the WWE 2K15 game with the company although this news certainly confirms that Sting and the WWE have come to terms.

Nobody has been able to report exactly what the plans are for Sting. It was widely assumed that he was coming in to build for an eventual WrestleMania 31 match against the Undertaker. The match has taken on a life of its own in the last few years and has turned into arguably one of the few dream matches yet to be made in a WWE ring. However, most reports indicate the Undertaker’s status for WrestleMania is still in question, thus we can’t conclude that will be the direction for Sting.

Another possibility is for Sting to come in as some kind of General Manager. That has been the other hot rumor for a few weeks. That would certainly make sense when you take a look at the stipulations of the main-event match. If Team Cena loses, maybe Vince McMahon makes Sting G.M. and he brings back the babyfaces? If the Authority are out of power, Sting could also slide right into that role and set up a match with Triple H.

Regardless of what happens this news takes Sunday’s event to a whole new level. Prior to this news the event was probably the weakest lineup on paper of any special event that the WWE held for months, going back to last year. The news now makes this event we all must go out of our way to see, even if it means sitting through a dull 2.5 hours to get there.

Where Sting goes is anyone’s guess. However, the timing of Sting’s arrival couldn’t have come at a better time. The WWE is under a ton of scrutiny and criticism right now by fans who feel that the booking has become predictable, stale, and uninteresting. While Sting alone won’t turn business around, it will generate some much needed positive talk for the WWE and give fans a sneak peek of where things are going heading into 2015 and that’s a good thing.

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More WWE Survivor Series 2014 Predictions and Preview

November 22, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

This Sunday, November 23, 2014, WWE will be presenting its second longest running PPV Survivor Series. The PPV emanates from the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, MO. Viewers can watch the PPV on regular PPV, or on the WWE Network. If WWE fans haven’t heard by now, for those who don’t have the Network, you can watch it for free.

Overall, the promotion of the Survivor Series has taken a backseat to the promotion of the free month of the WWE Network during the month of November, as a part of an effort to get new subscribers. The Network has yet to reach the milestone of one million subscribers, so WWE has gone overboard on television with all these promotional devices. Now, they give away one of the “Big Four” PPVs for free. How about improving the product, so people will subscribe WWE also could do something for those of us who have been a subscriber since the February 24th launch, so we’ll stay subscribers.

Anyway, outside of pushing the WWE Network, the main match that has been pushed very well is the Authority faction vs John Cena and his group. This push for the match has been in almost every other segment on Raw. Another match that has gotten quite a bit of attention has been the Bray Wyatt vs Dean Ambrose match. The Diva Title match between Nikki Bella and defending champion AJ Lee has been pushed pretty well also. The under card appeared to be just thrown together.

In this blog, I plan to discuss the Survivor Series PPV. I will discuss each match, and give my prediction on the outcome. I realize that I have been absent from making PPV predictions. I haven’t been all that impressed with the past WWE PPVs to even make a prediction, in a huge part because the product has been subpar. This PPV has something for me to comment on. I hope that my readers will enjoy the blog.

Without further ado, here are my predictions for the 2014 Survivor Series.

Kickoff Match: Badnews Barrett vs. Fandango

Badnews Barrett is returning from an injury suffered back in July. Fandango is also returning from an absence as well. I’m more of a Barrett fan, so I am looking forward to seeing him back
I don’t have much of an opinion here.

Prediction: I suspect that this will be a decent match. I suspect that both will have quite a bit of ring rust.

Winner : Badnews Barrett.

Singles Match: Bray Wyatt vs Dean Ambrose

I am loving Dean Ambrose. I am happy he is getting a push. He’s not the typical big guy that Vince McMahon loves to push. However, Ambrose can work, talk on the mic, and has all the other tangibles. I love his lunatic fringe routine. In his last PPV, He’ll In A Cell, Ambrose lose the HIAC match to his former Shield member, Seth Rollins, with help from the returning Bray Wyatt.

I’ve said in past blogs that I am not a fan of Bray Wyatt. I have really made an attempt to understand the character, and understand his popularity. However, I wasn’t impressed with the feud with Cena, or the one with Chris Jericho. This current feud with Ambrose is not lighting the world on fire for me either.

Prediction: I DO think that Wyatt is a very good worker. I do enjoy his ring work. As Ambrose is an excellent worker as well, I expect a very good match. I expect this feud to go on for a while, so I expect the heel to have his hand raised.

Winner: Bray Wyatt

Diva Title Match: A.J. (C) vs. Nikki Bella with Bri Bella

I’m so tired of the Bella Twins. I know that they have the show, “Total Divas,” etc, but this is crazy. They’re not the greatest actresses, and that’s being kind. They’ve improved slightly in the ring, but let’s not put them in the Hall of Fame yet. I mean, we fans are being subjected to poor Bri Bella having to be Nikki Bella’s servant for 30 days as Bri lost to Nikki at Hell In A Cell PPV. I just think the angle is stupid.

As for defending champion A.J. Lee, she’s a awesome wrestler. I have always admired her. She’s worked very hard to get where she is now. I am disappointed with the audience, when they chant the name of her real life husband, CM Punk. First, he is GONE from the company. Why is that so hard for them to understand? Second, I think the chanting is very disrespectful to her. She is the one that is out there, not Punk. She’s the one that is risking her body for their entertainment, not Punk. I also sense a bit of sexism because if if it were the other way around, I doubt there would be a ton of AJ chants if HE was out there and she were gone.

Prediction: I am thinking that A.J. is going to be carrying Nikki Bella to a decent match. Hopefully, Nikki doesn’t totally screw it up. I suspect that the Diva’s Title will change hands, likely by interference by Bri Bella (by force). I’m not looking forward to Nikki Bella as Diva Champion, but I am afraid that is going to be the outcome.

Winner: Nikki Bella, with help from her sister Bri Bella, will become the new Diva Champion.

Fatal Four-Way for the WWE Tag Team Title : Stardust/Goldust (C) vs the Luchadors vs. The Usos vs. The Miz and Mizdow.

This match was just thrown together. I really don’t have a clue who will win. I don’t take the Luchadors all that seriously. They’re a couple of high flyers with El Toro, their little mascot. The mascot is for the kids, and I get that. I just don’t think they’re champion material. The Usos are always going to be in the hunt, but I don’t think they’ll win. They already had a recent title reign. I’m not in love with the champs. Goldust can still work, but Cody Rhodes (Stardust) has never impressed me. I never saw the appeal.

The team that I really enjoy are The Miz and Mizdow. I am not usually a fan of the Miz. I never understood why he got the WWE Title. I thought he got a joke of a push. I never saw the big deal, until now. At first, I didn’t like the movie star routine. I didn’t buy into the “Money Maker” gimmick. Who comes along to change my mind? Bring in Mizdow. Formerly known as Sandow, Mizdow is a good worker, and is fun to watch. Everything that his mentor Miz does, Mizdow does. I just love it. It’s great entertainment.

Prediction : I am expecting a very good match from these guys. I think there will be a fast paced match. I am not sure if the titles will change hands in this match. I am thinking that they won’t.

Winner : Stardust /Goldust retain their championships.

Traditional Survivor Series Divas Elimination Tag Team Match: Emma, Alicia Fox, Naomi and Natalya vs. Paige, Summer Rae, Layla and Cameron.

Do I have to analyze this match? I mean, seriously, WWE needs to do better with the Diva Division. These women need to be treated better than just afterthoughts. These women are just being thrown out there to fill up time for the PPV, when these Creative could do much better. From looking at the participants, there could be some pretty interesting feuds. Sadly, for many of those watching, this will be a bathroom break.

Prediction: I suspect that the babyfaces will win this match. I expect Natalya to be the workhorse. I also sense that her husband TJ will try to interfere.

Winner: Team Natalya with Natalya and Naomi the survivors.

Traditional Survivor Series Tag Team Elimination Match: Team Cena (John Cena, the Big Show, Dolph Ziggler, Ryback, Eric Rowan) vs. Team Authority (Luke Harper, Seth Rollins, Mark Henry, Alexander Rusev, Kane)

Stipulations: If Team Authority loses, they’re removed from power, but if Team Cena loses, they’re fired.

This has to be one of the most predictable matches ever. Does anyone remember Survivor Series 2001, where if Team Invasion won, WWE would go out of business? I seem to remember Stephanie McMahon crying her eyes out when Team WWE won. Why do I have a sick feeling that we are going to see that again on Sunday?

I mean, didn’t John Cena get “fired” before? That didn’t stick then, so why should viewers believe that now? I mean, here’s the Authority putting every single blockade in Cena’s way. The Authority is physically and mentally intimidating anyone in the locker room who might join Cena’s team at the PPV. I mean, Stephanie threatening Sheamus with the old “passport is messed up” trick? How convenient that Mrs. McMahon-Levesque puts Sheamus in a match with the Big Show, and Sheamus got “injured.” Despite all of this predictable nonsense, John Cena still gets a team together. Now, at the last minute, the Authority lays down the “fired” stipulation.

As much as Triple H and Stephanie are my favorite wrestling couple, I think the Authority faction has run its course. It is time to see what Seth Rollins (who I also like ) can do without the help from Kane, and everyone. I realize that many heels have had a group, but I don’t need to see the group in every segment. The authority figure needs to be faded out, except for major angles.

Prediction : As I said, unless there’s a huge swerve, which WWE loves to do, I am pretty sure that the outcome will be very predictable. I’m thinking that this will be a very good match, considering the participants. I am thinking that the Authority will do everything possible to hold on to power. Team Cena has to have contributions from everyone. I hope that this will not be a one man show, starring John Cena. I would not be surprised if there were run-ins, and one of the teams would get screwed. After all, it is Survivor Series.

Winner : Team Cena. Survivors: John Cena and Ryback.

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TNA Wrestling: Looking to Make an IMPACT With New TV Contract

November 21, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

While it appears TNA’s Impact Wrestling has been revived from life support with a new television deal, can it save the product that needs some refreshing as well?

Taken straight from the press release, which was made public this week, it looks like Discovery Communications had enough faith in the product to throw their hat in the ring and make the fledgling promotion its latest find.

Discovery Communications announced today that it has signed a multi-year deal with TNA (Total Nonstop Action) IMPACT WRESTLING to bring the popular league to homes nationwide on Destination America, the only network dedicated to celebrating the people, places and stories of the United States.

Destination America officially enters the ring with its first world premiere of IMPACT WRESTLING in January 2015. The series features some of the biggest names in professional wrestling, including Jeff Hardy, Bobby Roode, Kurt Angle, Bobby Lashley and Gail Kim.

The partnership includes the U.S. premieres of additional TNA WRESTLING series and specials and provides Discovery Communications with international broadcasting rights in select regions, to be announced at a later date.

“Our partnership in this uniquely entertaining franchise with TNA IMPACT WRESTLING provides a significant addition to Destination America’s programming strategy,” said Henry Schleiff, Group President of Destination America, Investigation Discovery, American Heroes Channel, Discovery Fit & Health and Discovery Family Channel. “The enduring, cross-generational enthusiasm of pro wrestling is felt by millions of fans around the country, from coast-to-coast and throughout the heartland. We are delighted to bring this beloved American pastime to the one and only network dedicated to celebrating the unique spirit of the U.S., Destination America.”

Now that the niceties have been issued and there is a new hope for TNA, how will Dixie Carter and the creative team work to make not only the promotion stick, but can the script flip and more depth added to the overall concept of programming?

  • The Bobby Roode/Lashley angle works. Start with that and look to find other contenders instead of reused champions.
  • Find a way to make Kenny King the lead heel of the company.
  • Look to ROH and released WWE roster members to show new changes.
  • Change the camera angles and work to make the arenas bigger so it does not look as if the ring overtakes the entire television screen.
  • Go back to old school NWA announcing with an announcer’s table a la Gordon Solie and CWF.

Make tag teams important again. Find new teams to bring in. Also, find managers to promote wrestlers. I would love to see James Mitchell back in the fold.

While the brand appears to be a cross over at times of TNA and ECW, why not bring back a Hardcore Title so fans can see table, ladders and household appliances on a weekly basis.

TNA has a habit of using great storylines and burying them in the dirt because there is a lack of creativity. The company has also lost great talent over the years like AJ Styles, Christopher Daniels, Crimson, Matt Morgan and Kharma.

The corporate partnership with TNA is based mostly on the state of professional wrestling and its fans, who tend to be loyal, even with the issues that the business has experienced over the past few months. Both TNA and WWE have had issues with storylines, wrestling angles and keeping fans interested with superstars who are basically retreads without growing or bringing in newer talent to change things up and revive stagnation.

Since the company will not move over to the new network until January, the next six weeks could be the start of something new or the end of the ill-fated programming the fans have come to tolerate, but do not appear to be fond of.

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WWE Stars Talk About Wrestling Sting

November 21, 2014 By: Category: Videos, WWE | Pro Wrestling

Sting is now signed with the WWE but we have yet to hear of any concrete reports indicating plans for the former WCW and TNA star’s first match. The latest WWE Inbox video features several WWE stars are stepping up to the plate and revealing what they would do to get a one-on-one match with Sting.

This is a fun video which both promotes the brand-new WWE 2K15 video game and also promotes the impending debut of arguably the most anticipated star in years, Sting. The new video on the WWE YouTube channel features several WWE stars telling the world what they would do to get an opportunity to welcome Sting to a WWE ring.

Curtis Axel - “What would I do to get a match with Sting?” Curtis Axel asked. “I don’t know, I’d probably go up to Sting and say, ‘Hey man, wanna have a match?’ And he’d probably say yes. But if he said no, I’d walk up to Triple H’s door, knock on it, and I’d say, ‘Hey, Triple H, Sting wants to have a match with Curtis Axel. I’ve already talked to him. He agrees with it, so book it.'”

Adam Rose - “I don’t know, I’d probably be staring across the ring saying to myself, ‘Oh my goodness that’s Sting over there isn’t it?'” Adam Rose said. “I’d be torn, I’d be like, ‘Oh that’s Sting, but I gotta fight him. What do I do?”

The Miz - “It’s not what I would do for a match with Sting, it’s what would Sting do to have a match with me,” The Miz said.

Dolph Ziggler - “I know what I would do for a Klondike bar. I would be honored obviously. [I’m] a huge fan of wrestling all my entire life. Sting is this icon and especially if it was his first ever WWE match, do you think anyone would be able to go toe-to-toe and have that man look like the million bucks that he is other than myself?”

Check out the video and some really cool clips of Sting in WWE2K15 to see more.

Buy WWE 2K15 on Amazon.com

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New TV Home for Impact Wrestling Gives TNA a Fresh Start

November 21, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Wednesday November 19, the professional wrestling world was buzzing when Total Non-Stop Action Wrestling announced its flagship program Impact Wrestling will begin airing on Discovery Communications Network Destination America in January 2015 ending their 9 year run with Spike TV.

It’s no secret TNA’s ratings on Spike TV have been less than stellar and it was evident over the past several months that Spike TV was looking for an out with TNA. I knew that when Spike moved Impact Wrestling to Wednesday night’s to avoid competing with NFL Football the ratings would change, thus giving Spike more leverage to in their case to cancel Impact Wrestling from their line-up. I really can’t blame Spike, as TNA’s product the last several years has been less than stellar.

While Destination America is a much smaller network (seen in roughly 60 million homes vs. Spike TV at 98 million), it gives Destination America an opportunity to gain a new audience and it keeps Impact Wrestling in business. The only disadvantage is that with most cable and satellite providers Destination America is offered on a more expensive channel package. However, I do have one of the lower cost expensive packages and located the Destination America channel on my line-up.

This new opportunity can be huge for both Discovery Communications and Impact Wrestling. Various reports are saying TNA will not only have its flagship show on the Destination America, but other new Impact Wrestling programming which is a win-win for both parties. Between now and the time TNA holds their first television taping, they should re-examine their roster, look at their overall creative plans and basically start fresh on the new network in January.

If I was in charge, I would take the rest of November and all of December and turn Impact Wrestling upside down with an entire brand new set, brand new logo, brand new opening introduction – basically start all over again from scratch, not concerned about what World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) or Ring of Honor (ROH) is doing on their television shows or what potentially Global Force Wrestling may look like. TNA should not be distracted by the other companies. I am not saying TNA shouldn’t act like they don’t exist, just don’t make it a main focus to attempt to copy or semi-copy storylines from WWE or ROH and get caught up in what is or isn’t working with your competition.

What I found interesting is that the press release didn’t indicate what night of the week or what time Impact Wrestling with air on Destination America beginning in January. With RAW on Monday nights at 8:00pm, SmackDown moving to Thursday’s at 8:00pm and Lucha Underground Wednesday’s at 8:00pm on the El Rey network, Destination America and TNA have several viable options that could work.

The idea night of the week for Impact Wrestling would be Sunday night’s at 8:00pm. However, with some cable outlets still carrying WWE Pay-Per View events and now ROH Pay-Per View events, Sunday night’s may not be an option legally. Tuesday or Wednesday’s would be the only other viable choices for a week night timeslot.

I am excited for Impact Wrestling and the wrestling business. Once a day and time is announced for Impact Wrestling, I will be setting my DVR to record Impact Wrestling in hopes that I will be watching a whole new and fresh TNA product.

I have always liked TNA overall. Whenever there has been a house show in my market, I would attend their event and enjoyed the interaction with meeting the wrestlers before and after each show. I want TNA to succeed. As Triple H would say – “it’s what’s best for business.”

Destination America should, and I suspect they will based on reading the press release, take advantage of every opportunity to promote Impact Wrestling on their network as much as possible, which is something, so it seemed, Spike TV did not do the last few years.

This new partnership with Discovery Communications should be seen as a fresh new start for Impact Wrestling. TNA should bring an entire new look and feel to the show and most of all have a complete creative overhaul of the product with a new focus.

With a new network and hopefully a renewed focus, TNA will give me a reason to start watching their show again in 2015.

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