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CheapShots: Thoughts From Christi (WWE Smackdown)

“Mad Man” Mike is back with his irreverent analysis on this week’s edition of WWE Smackdown Live as the Road to Money In The Bank continues!

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As I grab the day-tripper and make the quick jaunt over to Corpus Christi, I can’t help but wonder how The Patriarch and his boys would feel about the current show that is World Wrestling Entertainment? World Class ran spot shows here for the majority of two decades before Fritz’s kids were in the creative picture. Passion for fans around Dallas wasn’t cranked up to eleven yet, but the myths around the art form were still protected with cloak and dagger. Having never set foot in Texas, I can still verify the vibrations of old-school fans who were there. Newer fans worldwide react more to the show than they do to performers in it.

There is a two-sided coin present as SmackDown Live opens this week. Yes, the ladies get the prime chute spot on the card. Unfortunately, Vince McMahon’s lapse in judgement was on display as we had to stomach Carmella’s justification for having SmackDown Women’s Gold, and her circular logic that she will defeat Asuka at Money in The Bank. Ten minutes of my life I’ll never get back. Blondie Circus, I could’ve have saved you the trouble of reciting a script. Two reasons you’ll win in Chicago: Hormones and a calendar. Neither of which have anything to do with ability. Relax honey, you’re not losing until SummerSlam or Survivor Series. Go backstage, call your parents and thank them for good genetics. After that, try to cut a promo yourself.

Early and plentiful recess for this episode, yay! Vince’s perfect Champion did commentary on a handicap match between Asuka and the remnants of Absolution. Blondie Circus antagonized The Japanese Ace into taking the match with help from Rose & Deville on the ramp. Our GM Paige came out to ask Carmella’s next challenger who she wanted to face Tuesday Night. Her response: “Give me both!” The match was physical and solid. The tandem had the advantage early. Asuka did her best to keep separation between partners, as well as in the ring. Though, she had to deal with Carmella distracting her from outside. None of it mattered. The Rising Sun Mystic got a clean win when she put Deville in The Asuka Lock. Vince’s Champ got the last word because she jumped Asuka when the defeated duo wouldn’t leave ringside, YAWN!

Don’t worry, ladies trying to move the art form forward were also present Tuesday. The second dose of the better chromosome was administered as half of a mixed tag match. Jimmy Uso & Naomi took on Lana & Aiden English. Most fans are confused when reacting to Lana. Stanford continues to stunt her and Rusev on purpose. She is getting better in the ring. Though her interactions remain short. There was no way the heels were winning this. English is a perfect mouthpiece. But he doesn’t have the skills to carry her. The married couple went over and most of us continue to wonder why the other one is kept apart on camera.

Last lap around the playground was a contest between Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch. The skills of both of these ladies haven’t been questioned since their time in NXT. They did nothing to disappoint here. This was a WRESTLING MATCH! Granted, there were a couple fun spots. Including one where each girl caught her opponent’s leg. Rather than taking double kicks, both just put the other’s leg down because they are friends for now. Charlotte had the edge late. She went for a Moonsault but got knees in the midsection from Becky instead. Second Nature’s instinct was still strong enough to attempt a Figure Eight. The close was fun. Never seen a counter like this. The Lass Kicker took control of Charlotte’s arm on the step-through, took her to the mat, and slapped The DisarmHer on for the victory. This may have been Charlotte’s first clean television loss since tapping out to Lady Banks in mid-August.

Sadly, recess is over. Here we go. Gallows & Anderson are next in line for a shot at SmackDown Tag Team Gold. If we flashback we can see that they are getting The Uso treatment minus the distraction. Anderson had a singles match with Harper of The Bludgeon Brothers. The big man was dominant, though he took a schoolboy and the loss. Guessing they will put on the opposite contest next week. Calling it now. If they flip the coin, Gallows & Anderson get The Gold. If they don’t. the Champs will keep it. I just hope it’s a decent offering in Chicago.

We then had a solid contract signing backstage making the Last Man Standing Match pitting AJ Styles against Shinsuke Nakamura official. For once the baby face took over one of these. After signing, Styles told his opponent to stop playing games. “You can’t beat me without the low blows…You speak English…” Naturally, Nakamura didn’t listen. Magically, the pen Styles just used lost ink in the transfer. The next one was broken and The Con Artist threw the the third at The Champ. Styles had to be escorted away in anger after slapping Shinsuke. The; and only then, did he sign the contract. “Last Man Standing.”

Earlier in the night, The New Day went into Mike’s locker room to troll him because why not? They said that he could choose which representative would partake in the men’s namesake match in two weeks. All he had to do was pick a name out of a hat. Too bad for Mike, he was busy talking and didn’t see The Unicorns switching out the hats. When Mike stuck his hand in to do the honors, he got pancake batter instead of paper! Other than his wife, who doesn’t love screwing with The Miz? PS: We still don’t know who will carry the banner for The New Day in Chicago.

As for the six-man tag featuring all possible combinations of the SmackDown contingent for The Men’s Namesake Match: It was a typical coin flip, though the heels got more offense in than expected. A late tag to Kofi Kingston opened the door for baby face high spots until Kingston was blind-sided. At this point, The New Day were all incapacitated outside the ring. However, Kofi was still legal. When he was being put back in the ring, Mike went to get pancakes to throw at him because wrestling. What happens now? Kofi is being held up by Rusev and Samoa Joe. He moves so Mike’s partners take breakfast in the face! Surprise, they’re both pissed. Rusev kicks him and Joe gives him a senton. The Miz is left alone to take the loss.

SmackDown is clearly the more consistent brand right now. This was a more scattered show than usual. I felt like the designated driver at a bachelor party. I remember most of it and it was still solid. Changing planes again. Headed to Call The Hogs! Woooo PIG SUEY, RAZORBACKS!


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Mad Man’s Spinal Tap & 20 Questions

Back to back weeks we see the Mad Man come to play in our sandbox. Does this article go to 11? Are the retread concepts, just hollow nowadays?

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Back to back weeks we see the Mad Man come to play in our sandbox! Does this article go to 11?

When you have decades of experience watching the art form, your eyes and thought processes change. It’s the reason my colleagues can break down pending news and angles we haven’t seen yet. Mr. Meltzer made a cottage industry out of it. A ton of people on The Internet are trying to follow suit. Then, there are fans like me. As much as I love twitter, Professional Wrestling fans were never meant to receive “spoilers” every day.

This is NOT a “Back in my day…” thing. My eyes have changed too. However, I am focused more on WWE’s calendar when watching Stamford’s offering. If I think about wrestling. it’s very simple. My suspension of disbelief is gone for very few performers. In fact, I would say it’s gone for most fans. If we know it’s a work, why are scripts and outcomes still based on the assumption that we don’t? If I have seen a gimmick before, I am VERY hard to impress. Make me believe you can beat somebody; and stand out doing so, or I will chew you up and spit you the Hell out.

For those who say I should keep my mouth shut because I can’t perform and never have, I DON’T CARE! Saint Dave gets a pass, and y’all still watch the current product like his lap dogs and clones, despite “knowing’ the outcome? I don’t watch for the outcome anymore. Based on character development and pushes, I can see that coming. Call me a hypocrite and I will play 20 Questions with you. Can you get me to the finish line without looking like an idiot or a laughable copy of someone else?

Su Yung is 5’6’’ish. Marks and sheep world wide are transfixed and petrified? Make up aside, why? She is impersonating three legends with no unique move set and doing it very badly. Without her zombies, can she beat anybody? Mr. Calloway used druids. He was 6’10’’ and did not need them to kick your ass. Mick Foley put himself and you through HELL before using The Mandible Claw. You had no choice but to take it. The Great Muta was arguably the best Rising Sun performer of all time. He had a move set most American fans had never seen before. The Mist was believable in his hands because audience and opponent were spinning trying to keep up with him. Where is Su Yung’s Mysticism? As much as fans love her, there are no OMG moments in her matches, and her gimmick is predicated on them.

She is far from the only example. Twitter went crazy about a month ago because a top name on the indies put something in her opponent’s mouth during a match. Outside of a prison fight, when would this EVER HAPPEN? Why is this necessary? If this is a work, why would any girl allow someone to do this? Tell me why either woman gets hired again without the parrot response? Same question applies to Joseph. Dude ain’t pickin’ up anybody like that in real life. I dare him to pick my wheelchair up with his finish. He would be in traction.

Tony Schiavone is our crazy wrestling fan uncle. Our memories of him when we were kids and teenagers all ROCK! He is without question one of the best to ever call the action. God Bless Conrad Flair for bringing him back to the art form. Among other fun stuff, he now does commentary for MLW. With tongue firmly planted in cheek; I must say, I have a slight problem with him. I understand that it is his job. He continues to put MJF over because?? I get the gimmick. It’s just OLD! He is ripping off The Miz. One look at him, and you can see that. “I have more money than you.” So did DiBiase. And if you did, you wouldn’t need the $50.00 a night you made before Tony started calling your matches because you’d be paying him. Just wait until Mike retires before you go to New York.

Finally, we arrive at the biggest tent. Vinnie’s circus was on The West Coast in The House of Hot Rod & Billy Jack Haynes. Sheep under 25 are now asking a three-worded question. The only help you’ll get from me is to say that he may have been the father of Modern Independent Wrestling. Sometimes, it wasn’t his choice, and he is still fighting demons today.

Back to this week. Didn’t Spinal Tap all stand in the Center Ring around a month ago and do a babyface promo? “It’s our fault. We’ll do better for you. This is YOUR product.” First, I believe Stephanie as a babyface as much as I believe Saint Richard as a babyface. Shut up and go home as a shoot. Second, as big a moron as Vince is, he’s NOT leaving the person carrying the big top out of WrestleMania! Outside of the obvious, Becky’s leg is a work. SHE WAS LIMPING ON THE WRONG ONE ON MONDAY! Seth Rollins is hurt as a shoot. He WASN’T at Monday Night Raw. If Becky wasn’t cleared, she wouldn’t be on either show. So WHY is everybody going apes*** over this?

Sometimes, I can’t tell which group is Spinal Tap?

Is it the group on stage or the sheep who believe what they’re watching? I truly wish this art form was treated more like real competition.


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Mad Man’s Consequences Of Sainthood

Does the lineage of Saint Ric need no explanation?

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It’s been a while since Mad Man has landed his Sea Duck in our waters. He has a Flair for gold and the bold! Let’s see where this goes.

Let’s see if I remember how to do this. The Internet Wrestling Community has not seen this from me in months. Something BIG had to happen to get me out of hiding.

I’d say this week at Vinnie’s Circus certainly qualifies. If you’re expecting me to wax poetic about the dudes, take some Nyquil and go back to sleep. The Royal Rumble is both brilliant and flawed at the same time. And yes, it is about effing time the ladies got their shot to steal the show. Although, it can be quite successfully argued, they do so on a nightly basis already. All did a fabulous job last year. Including my girl; Lady Banks, going well past an hour over two nights. Drawing The Shawn Michaels Slot at #1, And then, making a beeline to the ring for a nose-to-nose promo with The Female Muta, Asuka.

The Female Dragon had two words echoing through Philadelphia to kick off Monday Night: “I’M READY!” Those who saw the full confrontation know she was. Who was her opposition in the desert again? The thought of The Rumble being flawed is not new. Especially when its ultimate goal is taken into account. Win the damn thing and Main Event The Showcase of The Immortals! Wait, what did I just say? Back to that shortly.

Blemishes in the execution of this concept make their first appearance innocently enough. The victor in this contest is not based on who participates in it. The Champions headed into WrestleMania dictate the finish. What results from algebra like this? Simple, in most years over 80% of the field is background noise. Most of the time, smarks and sheep alike have a pretty good idea who’s headed to Mania. Overwhelmingly, we don’t mind as long as we get a great match. This changes when the feminine equivalent of Mike Tyson shows up on Vinnie’s doorstep, signs a convoluted contract, and just might bail after the biggest show of the year. Storyline and logic; what little there is in this art form we love, take a beating when Vinnie says Tyson MUST face Holyfield before she runs off to have kids and turn into Brock Lesnar.

What the Hell does he do with the Female Connor McGregor?

The BEST organic baby face in the industry this decade. He turned into Helen Keller on Monday Night. No, you little prick! I am in the wheelchair. You are not disabled! Did he see or feel the crowd in Phoenix? I certainly did. In fact, my neighbors knocked on my apartment door to ask if I was alright. That’s how loud I was. Vince, you haven’t had an honest crowd reaction like that in 20 years, and you wanna pollute it? “Jesus, she wasn’t supposed to be here. You mean these fans AREN’T sheep?” Don’t worry Vince, they’re still sheep and this is still all about Flair and McMahon, DAMMIT! For those laughing at me and saying it’s a work; guess what? It doesn’t have to feel like a work!

I started feeling like something was different about Professional Wrestling in the late ‘80s, when nobody could kick Ric Flair’s ass and get rid of him. First switch of NWA Gold I remember? Ronnie Garvin taking out Flair in Detroit, 1988. As an eight-year-old, I was hardly thinking about math. Why does this matter? Garvin had The Gold six weeks. He had one Title Defense at the end of that window, against Ric Flair. Guess who won? Everybody does cartwheels over his trilogy with The Dragon in 1989, not me. Don’t get me wrong, phenomenal matches, but Ric Flair was always walking out with Championship Gold. Hey Ric, the art itself was a work. Why show us The Gold was too? Spanning from 1984 and Kerry Von Erich to 1993 And Barry Windham, Ric Flair was GIVEN no less than five runs with NWA Gold or its equal because he was Saint Richard Flair isn’t the only idiot in the modern art. During his last holy act with Ricky Steamboat, Vincent Kennedy McMahon walks into a New Jersey courtroom and gigs the business hard way. Exposing it simply because he doesn’t wanna pay taxes on an authentic sporting event. Excuse every child under ten at the time? THANKS VINCE!

Two years later, WWF Gold was held up. How does he deal with this? First, let’s bring Ric Flair in because those in charge of WCW were absolute MORONS! Wait, Vinnie can’t have Hulk Hogan pinned in 1992. “It’s okay, we’ll put Gold on the line at The Royal Rumble. Winner gets The Strap!” Awesome, a boatload of great performers! Did ANYBODY really think Ric Flair wasn’t winning this match? HELL, Hogan pulled Sid Justice out from the floor! At least Flair won in 1992. Flash forward almost three decades. If the concept is, “Winner gets choice of Champion at WrestleMania” Why is Sid Justice going to Main Event Mania FROM THE FLOOR? Hey ass****, if you NEED Tyson/Holyfield, do the Bret/Luger finish! Becky WON the match! Here’s an idea, every televised event from here to Mania is held in an empty arena until we are given a collective Heimlich Maneuver to expel Ashley from our systems. The WWE Universe would never do this because sheep love this circus. If this stands, The Women’s Royal Rumble has jumped the shark just two years in. Vince, we know it’s a work.

Why must you insist on making it THIS! Give Asuka to Ashley. You don’t need to verify Charlotte Flair’s Sainthood. Sasha Banks has seen it three times.


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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