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Opinion

Top 5: Matches of the Week Ending 5/13/2018

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Well another month in the books, so that means we are one step closer to filling out the Match of the Year pool. The vote for April went mostly how I expected, so, NXT Takeover NXT Championship Match: Andrade Almas (c) vs Aleister Black, won the match vote. So here’s what the Match of the Year Pool looks like so far:

January – Johnny Gargano vs Andrade Almas
February – Kazuchika Okada vs SANADA
March – Golden Lovers vs Young Bucks
April – Andrade Almas vs Aleister Black

Now since we had a weekly vote also, let’s find out which match won that. WWE Backlash Intercontinental Championship: Seth Rollins (c) vs The Miz, managed to shine through the week as brightly as it did on Backlash. Now let’s get to the offerings this week.

 

5. WWE SmackDown MITB Qualifier: Jeff Hardy vs The Miz

This match was surprising for all of the right reasons. Miz has been doing a lot of good work lately, but with nothing to really show for the effort.

Both men got in most of their signature moves. Jeff Hardy dominated a good portion of the match, and it was all done fairly well. The ending was surprising also in the respect that Hardy hits his Swanton Bomb, but Miz manages to roll the pin into a crucifix pin of his own, for the surprising victory.

So The Miz finally gets a win, after showing that he can do good ring work the last few months. Should be interesting to see how he fairs in the Money in the Bank.

Rating: *** 1/4

 

4. ROH War of the Wolds: Jushin Liger vs Cody

This entire tour has had some level of drama, Dalton Castle not being able to perform because of injury, Jay Lethal getting injured later in the night of this show, but Bullet Club is fine.

Liger always impresses on the different types of matches he can pull off. We saw this match become more of a 90s style match with a few fun spots, some outside interference and great character work. Which honestly, these have all become hallmarks of the American Nightmare gimmick, so it’s hard to find a bad match.

Also kind of amusing to point out, that the last few matches I’ve seen where he tries to introduce weapons after a ref bump…those always go wrong for Cody. Cody was able to pull off the win after Burnard distracted Liger which set up a nice Crossroads. Nothing flashy, nothing overly special, but Cody has put in a lot of good work lately.

Rating: *** 1/4

 

3. Dragon Gate King of Gate Tournament: Shingo Takagi vs Masato Yoshino

This was a very hard hitting match, that saw the ANTIAS stable facing the MaxiMum stable in first matches for their respective blocks.

While I’m admittedly not well versed in the history between these two, since there aren’t as many competitors in each block for King of Gate, every match matters. With only 5 men, in 4 different blocks, that means each match is 25% of your tournament hopes if you want to move forward.

After coming off a slightly disappointing, but still impressive run in the AJPW Champion Carnival, Shingo has a little bit to prove. This match went back and forth the entire times, trading strikes, chops and big moves. Also we saw ANTIAS work a little bit like LIJ from New Japan where they helped out Shingo on the outside by piling up chairs or causing distractions, but not being outright in the way.

Shingo had to throw literally everything at Masato, where after 2 Last Falconry attempts, Yoshino still kicked out. So Takagi laid him out with one more Pumping Bomber lariat, and finally picked up the pinfall victory.

Rating: **** 1/4

 

Honorable Mention:

MLW Fusion: ACH vs Tom Lawlor
Rating: *** 1/4
Dragon Gate King of Gate Tournament: Naruki Doi vs Eita
Rating: *** 1/4
ROH War of the Worlds: Jay Lethal, Kenny King & Colt Cabana vs SANADA, EVIL & Hiromu Takahashi
Rating: *** 1/4
WWE RAW Intercontinental Title: Seth Rollins (c) vs Mojo Rawley
Rating: ***
MLW Fusion Bogus Adventure Match: Jimmy Havoc vs Joey Janela
Rating: ***

 

2. 205 Live: Buddy Murphy vs Mustafa Ali

Murphy wanted this match to avenge his only loss in 205 Live so far, and Ali is trying to keep himself in the conversation for another championship opportunity.

This match was extremely well wrestled. A lot of jaw jacking and call backs to last week when Murphy won his match by knock out and also their last match when Ali tried to do a 450 onto Murphy’s left arm again.

Murphy dialed up the violence, and Ali tried to hang in there, but once Ali missed the 450 to the arm, Murphy just had his way with the match. Driving Ali’s head into the post, followed up by his Murphy’s Law finish. So with that loss avenged, you have to figure that as long as he makes weight, he should have a title shot in the future.

Rating: **** 1/4

 

1. Dragon Gate King of Gate Tournament: YAMATO vs Kzy

These two have a decent bit of history. Kzy recently left YAMATO’s stable Tribe Vanguard to create his own group, Natural Vibes. So there’s not necessarily bad blood, but Kzy had something to prove.

The pace was pretty high this entire time, and we saw a lot of back and forth. Nearly a 20 minute match, it had everything you could expect. Locomotion cradle attempts from both men, trading a few submission attempts and Kzy going for broke with a few top rope maneuvers.

There were plenty of times it looked like either could win, but YAMATO showed he’s still got something left and won with Ragnarok. After the match YAMATO brought up that he felt something special from Kzy and referred to him possibly by his real name of Kazuki Sawada, and put over the old guard of Dragon Gate. The veterans of Dragon Gate got referenced since they have recently gone through a change in executives and are losing some of the Over Generation wrestlers to the Shanghai division of Dragon Gate.

Rating: **** 3/4

 

Now even though the King of Gate tournament started off electric, my vote for this week will actually go to, Buddy Murphy vs Mustafa Ali. The match told a good story, had nice callbacks, as well as showing more aggression from Murphy. So since his character is evolving, basically to use his size advantage, it was the match with the most actual progress for the participants.

Remember to let your opinion be heard and you could influence how our Match of the Year pool.


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Opinion

AJ’s Thoughts: Five Potential Returns

With Trips in charge and already starting to bring back some people that didn’t work in Vince’s picture, AJ got an idea. Who else could we see on the horizon radar?

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With Trips in charge and already starting to bring back some people that didn’t work in Vince’s picture, AJ got an idea. Who else could we see on the horizon radar?

With everything going on with WWE, the one thing we have all been hyped about are all of these returns. Dakota Kai made her return at SummerSlam alongside Io and Bayley and now on last SmackDown, Karrion Kross and Scarlett made their returns in a big way against Drew McIntyre and showed the Hourglass to The Bloodline.

With all of that, there have been things in the pipeline saying Triple H’s foot isn’t off the pedal so these are 5 returns from either NXT, main roster or even Try-Outs that I would love to see happen with the new regime.

1. Johnny Gargano

Now this is a name that people have been saying, “Maybe Impact or MLW” but, what about a return? Gargano didn’t renew his contract, most likely to be with his family which is a valid and amazing reason, will never disrespect that. If he were to return, there would be a handful of great reasons. Maybe a singles run with the Intercontinental or United States but with Ciampa getting limelight in the main roster from RAW, what if we get a tag team reunion?

WWE is hurting for Tag Teams and what better than to scare off The Bloodline, loosen  the stranglehold of championships with some Do It Yourself action. DIY reunion could be amazing, especially with newer faces showing up to get championship aspirations like Kross and Ciampa. Want to break the hierarchy? Do It Yourself.

2. James Storm

This one is a little bit weird and off. On one hand, who doesn’t love the Tennessee Cowboy, Jimmy James Storm? On the other, he is 45 and getting some nagging injuries as of late. So why would I say Triple H should bring James Storm back and give him something for the main roster? One of the things I said for Gargano, we have a lack of something and The Usos might need to watch two things in the rearview.

Watch your Money and your Alcohol.

Beer Money showing up in WWE would be amazing in my personal opinion. The Bloodline jump Roode, someone in a hoodie or jacket comes up and jumps them to even the fight and as soon as one Uso remained in the ring, the figure goes down and the old stomping goes off and we hear “BEER…” and Roode looks around and gets hyped up and shouts, “…MONEY!”

3. Big Cass



Since his departure from WWE, he has done something I have said since they split him off from Enzo. Take him through the Kevin Nash School of How To Big Man. ROH and Impact are great examples that he actually cleaned up and worked on what he has to do to be good in the ring. He can work the microphone, he can work the ring so we got a new big boy to take on the WWE once again.

Now I could have said Enzo and Cass to rejoin but, I’m sure the antics of Enzo will get Cass in deep water along with the fact that I already made two tag team predictions, we don’t need another. Cass brings a lot to the table and was kind of unproven in WWE because he was just the big enforcer to the more charismatic Enzo. Give this man about six months in the ring and you have your next MASSIVE problem in the IC or US Championship scene or even more.

4. Bronson Reed



The big man from down under is a former NXT North American Champion. He looked to have a good push going with that championship but he got release. If you wonder where he went… he actually made a pit stop in Impact Wrestling as JONAH with the most fire theme song in recent history I swear… I will link the theme song and Trips… please. Get rights to this theme song. I will be a bigger Bronson Reed fan.

Bronson to me is the weird man in all of this but, I think with Triple H involved, he could get something going for him with a good singles champion run or a big threat to go through like a gatekeeper of sorts. Big boy with a great amount of athleticism? Can’t really hate on that considering the last time we saw athletic bigger people were Keith Lee and… what was that one guy? Sherman Tank with a Ferrari Engine…?

5. Bray Wyatt

And the last one is the obvious one in all of this. Yes… we have Judgment Day as the somewhat supernatural dark group but we know the true successor of the supernatural and that is “The Eater of Worlds”, “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt. This time around, I don’t think we will get the Jekyl and Hyde, Mister Rogers gimmick. I believe this time around we get full darkness and mayhem. We get the darkness and the theory of reverting back to your prime.

To make a refresher… Miz went back to being the cocky narcissist after fighting The Fiend. Finn turned back to the Prince and much more. With guys like Edge returning, maybe we see the return of the Heel Ultimate Opportunist, maybe a Fiend fight with AJ Styles to get the TN-AJ perhaps. Possibilities are endless and with a great mind like Wyatt for character and execution, I think Hunter will pick up the phone and Let Him In.

– There are clearly others that I could say, or maybe even didn’t think about, but hey, that’s the Chairshot way of Always Using Your Head. Those are just five returns that could happen and hopefully you read this before RAW or SmackDown and who knows if I get any of these right, maybe I missed an obvious one or maybe we get a giant signing that nobody thought possible. Let me and all of Chairshot know!


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Opinion

King’s Greatest Hits Of Jeff Hardy

As he battles his demons, Chris King looks at some more positive moments in Jeff Hardy’s career!

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Jeff Hardy WWE Smackdown

I’m sure by now you’ve heard the disturbing news that former WWE superstar and recent AEW signee Jeff Hardy, was arrested again for multiple charges including a DUI.  Hardy has had a hard and tragic road of recovery throughout the years in multiple wrestling promotions.

Not too long ago, Hardy walked out on WWE after they were rumored to have offered the former world champion to go to treatment for his substance abuse issues. Hardy refused and said that he was better but, as we saw the demons are still lurking and got the best of him again.

I have seen some nasty comments and even some distasteful memes about the AEW superstar and felt compelled to go against the grain. Instead of kicking a man when he’s down, I’m going to put together a greatest hits for the “Charismatic Enigma.”

Jeff Hardy & The TLC Match

Everyone can say that Shawn Michaels and Razor Ramon helped innovate the iconic ladder match and you are right, but Jeff Hardy and his death-defying stunts changed the concept of the match forever. The Hardy Boyz vs. The Dudley Boyz vs. Edge & Christian and their iconic TLC match should have their wing in the Hall of Fame. The risks all six superstars took for the adoration of the crowd could have ended all of their illustrious careers. In the words of Vince McMahon, It’s such good shit!

Jeff Hardy Earns The Undertaker’s Respect

On the July 1st, 2002 episode of Monday Night Raw, Hardy delivered the performance of a lifetime nearly winning the WWE Undisputed Championship from The Undertaker in an incredible ladder match. The young up-and-comer was faced with his greatest task yet, challenging for the most prestigious title in sports entertainment. Hardy showed that without a shadow of a doubt he deserved to be in the main event scene, but came within minutes of defeating Taker. At the time of the match, Hardy was still finding his footing as a singles competitor and earned the respect of the champion and legend.

Swanton Bomb From The Heavens

When I think of the daredevil Jeff Hardy, I can’t help but think of this one crazy-as-hell stunt. At WWE One Night Stand 2008, Hardy faced off against the juggernaut Umaga in a falls count anywhere match. This match was so insane as both superstars fought into the parking lot. Hardy is one of the craziest and bravest superstars, hit a Swanton Bomb off a damn stage truck onto Umaga. It’s one of the wildest things you’ll ever see.

Hardy Wins The WWE Championship 

In 2008, Hardy finally made his way to the main event title picture alongside partner Triple H. HHH was Hardy’s mentor in some sort of way which led to the daredevil achieving his lifelong dream of becoming WWE champion. At the 2008 Armageddon pay-per-view, Hardy would face HHH and longtime rival Edge in a triple-threat match for the title. In what was a great match between all three superstars, Hardy delivered a Swanton Bomb to Edge to win the illustrious championship.

Straight Edge Problems For Hardy

The following year, Hardy found himself in the way of young-up-and-comer CM Punk who is looking to make an example out of him. Punk had won the Money in the Bank briefcase for the second year in a row and took advantage of Hardy to win the world title. What started as mutual respect between both superstars changed drastically, when Punk started throwing jabs at Hardy for his drug and substance abuse real-life issues. Punk would form his infamous stable known as the Straight Edge Society. This is a very underrated feud and you should go back and watch it in its entirety. The promos are gold.

The Hardy Boyz Return To WWE

Both Matt and Jeff Hardy found success in multiple other wrestling promotions including Ring of Honor, and TNA during their time away from WWE. Both brothers were struggling with their vices and made poor life choices but straightened up their act over the years. In 2017, the Hardy Boyz would face longtime rivals The Young Bucks in ROH. The following night the adored tag team would make their incredible return to WWE at WrestleMania 33. Matt and Jeff would be named the final team in the Fatal 4-way ladder match for the Raw Tag Team Championships. The pop these two received was insane and very much deserved. They would go on to win the match and win the titles to capitalize on their momentum.

Jeffery Nero Hardy Makes AEW Debut

From 2017-to 2022 Jeff Hardy would find himself pigeonholed in the mid-card title picture. He would have feuds with a plethora of superstars including Samoa Joe, and Randy Orton. Orton and Hardy had a nasty Hell in a Cell match back in 2018. Earlier this year, Hardy was seen running around after the 24/7 Championship, which was disappointing to see. After being genuinely unhappy in WWE, Hardy would make his AEW debut on the March 9th episode of AEW Dynamite. Hardy would come to the aid of his brother and longtime partner.

This week news broke that Hardy had been arrested for multiple charges including a DUI. While it’s easy to beat a man while he’s down, how about we uplift and try to encourage him to get the help he needs.

As a longtime wrestling fan, I have the utmost respect for Hardy and wish him the best of luck in his battle with addiction.


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