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Opinion

How I Would Book Ronda Rousey at Money in the Bank

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Ronda Rousey

Money in the Bank is this Sunday and has essentially become the fifth pay-per-view in a new “Big 5” for the WWE, which also includes the traditional four of Royal Rumble, WrestleMania, SummerSlam, and Survivor Series. The Money in the Bank matches themselves will have a large impact on storylines moving forward and the perceived intended futures of the winners, but perhaps the most intriguing match when it comes to the question of “where are they going with this” is the RAW Women’s Championship match between Nia Jax and Ronda Rousey.

The storyline that brought us to Jax vs Rousey has been disjointed at best, and many critics pose the usual questions of “Does Ronda deserve the title this soon,” “Should she be in a title match for her first singles match,” “Will she be the female Brock Lesnar,” etc. However, the fact is that we are here, the match is happening, and despite the lackluster build up, it certainly has piqued interest and conversation, which is what WWE wanted.

The bigger questions surrounding this match, if we assume that Rousey does indeed win the title, are ones such as “Where does Nia go from here?” “Who does Rousey feud with?” “Will she be a full-time participant from this point forward?” “Will she be given true angles and storylines, or be given the Brock Lesnar push and run through all comers?” These are the true, wrestling-based questions that will need to be answered moving forward. So in that vein, here is how I would book Ronda Rousey at Money in the Bank.

In her match with Nia, I would tell the story of Ronda constantly trying to apply the armbar, but Nia’s size and power thwart her each time. I think Ronda needs to take a few bumps to keep Nia over as a legit threat, and possibly even cover Rousey for her first two count, until ultimately Rousey finds a way to lock in the armbar and Nia taps out. Ronda Rousey is the new RAW Women’s Champion!

Ronda is celebrating her win in the ring with the fans, taking in the moment, until BAM! She is nailed from behind by the Women’s Money in the Bank winner with the briefcase. Ms. MITB lays her out with a few more shots from the briefcase and is then calling for a referee to cash in her title shot. We then see Stephanie McMahon coming down the aisle with an official, hustling him to the ring to start the match. Stephanie orders the timekeeper to ring the bell, Ms. MITB covers Rousey, and we get a 1..2..3! We now have a NEW RAW Women’s Champion and it’s Ms. Money in the Bank- Sasha Banks.

“The Boss Laides” stand tall over Rousey with the Women’s Title held high to close the segment.

This scenario does a couple of positive things. First of all, it allows for the inevitbale to happen, which is Rousey getting the title. Yes, this match has been rushed, and it has stopped Nia Jax in her tracks, but at this point, I don’t think there is any way they can keep the title on her and continue this fued. It has no heat, the storyline has been confusing, and it might be best to simply get the title onto Rousey and start fresh, again, with Nia. Seems unfair to Nia, but I think this while sitution has really screwed with her character development and short circuited her run as champion before it really had a chance to begin, which is unfortunate, but it is what it is.

Secondly, it then immediately takes the title off of Rousey and puts her in a logical feud and storyline for the title with her as the chasing babyface. It continues to play on the WWE vs UFC plot point that they have been emphasizing (there are no surprise Money in the Bank cash-ins in the UFC, which can help explain her loss and make it believable) and continues her storyline issues with Stephanie McMahon. WWE booked themselves into a corner here where they almost have to put the title on Rousey, but by then having her screwed out of the champiomnship the same night, it adds heat to a logical storyline that will put the fans in a position to want to see Rousey rip someone’s arm off and reclaim the title and claim revenge, instead of feeling like she was thrown into a rushed match before it made sense to do so.

Third, and perhaps most importantly in my opinion, it turns Sasha Banks heel. Banks’ “Boss” persona is a natural heel, and she pulled it off so well in NXT and early in her main roster run. There have been hints dropping for several months now that Sasha was due for a turn anyway, and giving her the briefcase, then the title, and aligning her with Stephanie McMahon would cement her as the top female feel on RAW and could allow her to take the “Boss” character to a new level. I would really play up the relationship with Stephanie and her new position as the chosen champion. Show her on RAW arriving in limos, getting her own personal dressing room, not having to listen to Kurt Angle, having the odds constantly stacked in her favor, etc. Play up the angle that Stephanie has gotten into her head with promises of truly being treated like “The Boss” that she is, and that the promise of even bigger fortune and fame convinced Sasah to aling with the enemy.

Now you have a ready-made storyline going into SummerSlam for Banks vs Rousey. Or even better yet, put some obstacles in Rousey’s way by virtue of Stephanie’s influence that she has to overcome first and stretch the inevitable Banks/Rousey match until Survivor Series. In the meantime, you could have Banks vs Bayley at SummerSlam for the title and wrap up that long simmering angle (and give Banks a legit win as champion) until Rousey finally earns her shot. If done right and given time, it could possibly even harken back to the Steve Austin vs The Rock feud in 1999, with Rousey playing the no nonsense face constantly fighting from underneath and overcoming the odds stacked against her by the Authority until she finally gets her shot at the cocky champion and takes the title.

I know the WWE is a business, but the business is stll wrestling, and in wrestling stories matter. Stories that make sense matter even more. The interest and more impprtanlty the emotion they can illicit is what hooks the fans and causes them to invest in what’s being presented to them. Obviously, it has been proven that today the WWE doesnt necessarily NEED great creative to make crazy money, but as a wrestling fan, it definitely enhances my enjoyment of the product. No matter what they do with Rousey in the coming months, I hope the WWE can throw us fans a bone and at least try to write something compelling for her, and the product as a whole, this summer.

Cheap Plug- If you’d like to know how I would book the rest of the Money in the Bank card, check out this week’s episode of my podcast, Kentucky Wrestle Report, on Audioboom.

@KoreyGunz
@KYWrestleReport


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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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