Connect with us

Opinion

Lashley. Reigns. Rollins. Ziggler. Are You Not Entertained?

Published

on

Roman Reigns Bobby Lashley WWE Extreme Rules

It was supposed to be everything wrestling fans had asked for. The night was last Sunday. The place was Extreme Rules. And the main event of the evening? Not Roman Reigns vs Bobby Lashley as most had predicted and groaned about, but instead a 30 minute Iron Man Match for the Intercontinental Title between Dolph Ziggler and Seth Rollins. It was exactly what the audience wanted. At least, it was what the internet told us that the audience wanted.

And what happened? An embarrassment on multiple fronts. A crowd that was either unappreciative or uninterested. Disrespectful chants. And two performers in Ziggler and Rollins, both deserving of this spot, probably seeing any future main event opportunities evaporating away.

The cringe worthy crowd response to the main event at Extreme Rules proves two truths in wrestling today, though uncomfortable as they might be to accept.

Number one, despite what the “Internet Wrestling Community” might tell you, they do not represent a majority of the WWE audience. Not only are they not a majority, they don’t even comprise as large a percentage of the general crowd for a WWE show as they might want you to believe. In today’s world, especially with the advent of social media, it would be easy to think that most wrestling fans in 2018 are “in the know.” They scour the dirt sheets for news and rumors, are daily visitors to message boards, stalk wrestlers’ Instagram accounts, and follow anyone and everyone related to the WWE on Twitter. If that were the case, the Extreme Rules main event would have went over like gangbusters!

“Roman Reigns Sucks.”

“Bobby Lashley Sucks.”

“Why Isn’t The WWE Title the Main Event?”

“Seth Rollins Should Be Universal Champion.”

“Seth Rollins vs Dolph Ziggler Is The Only Thing Good About RAW.”

Every message board you might visit was littered with the same sentiments in the build up to Extreme Rules. If the keyboard warriors are to be believed, it is a dark time in wrestling right now. So what does Vince McMahon and the WWE do? They throw everyone a curveball and give them exactly what you wanted! Ziggler vs Rollins in the main event! Heck, Reigns vs Lashley was even in the mid card! It was a smart mark’s dream. And how did these supposed wrestling purists react to this? By crapping all over it. Why? Maybe there weren’t as many smart marks in the crowd frothing at the mouth for thirty minutes of Ziggler and Rollins as we thought there were. Perception isn’t always reality.

The second truth that last Sunday revealed, and perhaps hardest for a longtime fan like me to accept, is that Vince McMahon is right- audiences don’t know what they want. The highly vocal (though apparent minority) of wrestling fans will tell you that they want to go back to the days of true heels and baby faces. They want to see good, technically sound wrestling. They want to see developed storylines and feuds that last longer than two weeks and come to a decisive end. You had all of that in Ziggler vs Rollins! Ziggler is the cocky heel with the muscle in Drew McIntyre to back him up. Rollins is arguably the most popular face on RAW right now. They are two of the best workers in the company and had already had great matches between themselves previously leading up to this Iron Man blow off. Their feud had a background and a story, and was probably the longest running and most developed storyline of any match on the card at Extreme Rules. It was everything today’s jaded fan would want wrestling to return to, and yet it didn’t matter. If we are to believe that these were the things most wrestling fans yearn for, their reaction to getting exactly what they asked for was the biggest disservice they could have done for Ziggler, for Rollins, and for themselves. The crowd was more interested in getting themselves over than either of the superstars in the ring. And therefore, nothing got over. Nothing except for the notion that “Vince Knows Best.”

I’m a fan of both Ziggler and Rollins. I was happy to see them get this spot and opportunity, and it was unfortunate that the crowd reaction was what it was. It’s also unfortunate that so many wrestling fans today like to be negative just for the sake of being negative. It’s perfectly OK to have your own opinions about what you like and don’t like. But then when you are given an alternative to prove your cause and it is met with this kind of response, you are only assuring yourself of getting more of the status quo. But maybe, deep down, that’s really what you want. Because if things were to change, then what would you have to complain about?


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

Opinion

Mathew’s Wrestling Quickies #4 Feat Violent Giants vs Strong BJ

Time is a flat circle, and there’s a lot of wrestling. Mathew touches on a few matches that he wasn’t able to cover so far this year!

Published

on

Time is a flat circle, and there’s a lot of wrestling. Mathew touches on a few matches that he wasn’t able to cover so far this year!

Welcome back to my Wrestling Quickies! The last time I did one of these was about three months ago, so I wanted to bring this back since I really enjoyed doing these.

For those that don’t remember how it works, I’ll be covering 6-8 random matches from any promotion as you’ll never know what you’re gonna find from each addition of my quickies and long as they’re uploaded between a 2-3 week period since not all of them are aired live. So which matches will be added to this version of my quickies?

Let’s find out.

 

World of Stardom Title Match
Kagetsu (c) vs. Hazuki

Review: I know I cover Stardom, but I’m a little behind on the shows and wanna move out of January since we’re halfway through February already. We have Kagetsu defending her World of Stardom Championship against her fellow Oedo Tai member, Hazuki. Kagetsu wanted this challenge once she defeated Jungle Kyona to retain the title. Hazuki won a tag match in the Oedo Tai vs. Oedo Tai bout to get some momentum and she could become Hazuki two belts if she can defeat the leader here. Will Kagetsu retain again or does Hazuki win the big one?

Kagetsu is already treating Hazuki like any of her other opponents when she doesn’t give her special treatment during her little beatdown as she starts throwing Hazuki around the outside of the ring while Sumire watched on as the two fight in the ring. One little critique I would give the match would have to be Hazuki while great in the ring, didn’t show her best work in the match as she had a few slip-ups that were noticeable and not sure if it was the pressure of the main event for the big title or not. Kagetsu though seems to really be stepping up her game recently in these title matches as she’s showing much better work in her performances. Aside from my one little comment, I thought the match was nicely executed for the majority of the match with some nice moves displayed, a good story involved, and very nice near falls.

Kagetsu would hit Hazuki with the Chokeslam and it looks like Hazuki is out of it but would still kick out at two this time around. Kagetsu went for the Oedo Coaster as Hazuki quickly went up to hit a Brainbuster off the top rope. Hazuki would finally hit the Atomic Bombs Away in the match as Kagetsu after failing to do so the first time and would somehow kick out of the move. Hazuki hits another Brainbuster for a two count and once she picked Kagetsu up, the Prime Minister would knee her in the face for the two to fall down. Kagetsu hits a Michinoku Driver off the top rope and goes for the Oedo Coaster for a second time as Hazuki moved out of the way to apply the La Hazukistral and this could be it, but Kagetsu kicked out again! Hazuki went to the top rope as Kagetsu would push the referee into the turnbuckle for Hazuki to fall down and hits another Michinoku Driver. Kagetsu would finally hit the Oedo Coaster onto Hazuki but she picked her up to hit the Death Valley Driver and instead of pinning her, she started to apply a Sleeper Hold and modifies it up a little bit as Hazuki is passed out, meaning Kagetsu retained the title!

Rating: Bruce Prichard

 

Singles Match
David Starr vs. Timothy Thatcher

Review: Our next match takes place in Germany’s promotion, wXw during their January 19th show called Back To The Roots XVIII where David Starr is scheduled to take on Timothy Thatcher. David Starr is someone I’m not too familiar with but I’m gonna find out more about him when he fights Timothy Thatcher, who is one of my favorites in the UK scene right now. This is sure to be a technical bout and time to see who wins this.

I was right to say that this match was technical in the beginning with the both of them getting even ground until Timothy would now get the control of the match when he worked David’s injured arm. What I enjoy about this match is the shoulder manipulation Timothy would be doing to David throughout the match with submissions, strikes, and impact moves. David did well going with the underdog type of role in this match while taking the punishment Timothy would lay out to him while getting some good comebacks into the match. Timothy would hit a beautiful Butterfly Suplex for a two count and once David kicked out of it, Timothy would quickly get him into a submission hold with that injured shoulder. Timothy would try to roll with the submission but David would roll with him and would get the big pinfall for the surprise victory in a short and sweet match!

Rating: Eric Bischoff and a half

 

World Tag Team Title Match
Shuji Ishikawa & Suwama (c) vs. Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi

Review: Since I’m not subscribed to BJW and this is for All Japan’s World Tag Team Championship, I thought it would be a good idea to talk about the match on here. We got The Violent Giants defending the titles against Strong BJ, Daisuke Sekimoto and Yuji Okabayashi at the BJW show, To Was Gat Early on the January 13th show. After Violent Giants retained over The Bomber, Strong BJ came out to make the challenge at their show and the Giants would accept the challenge. It should be a great match and can Violent Giants retain again or does Strong BJ beat AJPW in their turf?

What an incredible combination of power and wrestling mixed into this tag match as it was something you would expect for things to go out between these two powerhouses. If you enjoyed when Daisuke and Jun fought Violent Giants during the Real World Tag League, then you’ll love this bout as it was as hard hitting as this match but just had a better display in this match. Yuji being involved in this made it a bit better as he shows a better display of strength, especially when Suwama would have him in a Sleeper Hold and he just grabbed his hair to flip him over to get him to break the hold. Violent Giants were on point in this tag match displaying tag team wrestling and if people haven’t heard of this team, I would recommend start following them immediately.

Shuji was in the ring with Daisuke as he would start doing his combo with a running knee to the face and does a Dragon Suplex but Daisuke would kick out of the pinfall at two. Violent Giants start attacking Daisuke with a Double Lariat as Shuji has him by the ropes now to get the advantage and hits the Fire Thunder for Yuji to break the hold. Suwama and Yuji go at it now as Yuji would hit a Lariat as Suwama gets up to hit a Backdrop Driver to get him out of the ring. Daisuke and Shuji are back at it again as Daisuke starts to hit a few Lariats onto Shuji to try and get him down but Shuji would still kick out of it. Daisuke hits one final big Lariat for a two count before he hits the German Suplex Hold for the pin and we have new tag champs! Stong BJ has won the Tag Team Championships and wonder what it’ll mean for the titles due to BJW wrestlers winning the AJPW titles. Will Violent Giants get them back or will a new team try to dethrone them? Great tag match!

Rating: Bruce Prichard and a quarter

 

Wrestle-1 Title Match
Shotaro Ashino (c) vs. T-Hawk

Review: You all remember Wrestle-1, right? They’re still around and I know I kinda stopped covering them for the time being until I find a good day to write about them again, but I would still like to talk about Shotaro’s next title defense as he goes to take on Strong Hearts member, T-Hawk. Strong Hearts is still apart of Wrestle-1 as the rivalry is still going on in the company and the show took place on January 5th at Wrestle-1 Tour Sunrise. Shotaro was able to defeat Manabu Soya twice and this is his first title defense for the year as he looks to drive Strong Hearts out of their company while T-Hawk looks to win his first big title. Will Shotaro defend W-1’s honor or do Strong Hearts take another big win?

It’s been quite some time since I’ve seen T-Hawk in singles competition, so let’s see how he fairs here against the champion. I thought T-Hawk has gotten a lot better over the years and you can see the progression in his character and skills once he left Dragon Gate to join CIMA with STRONG HEARTS and seeing how much he’s grown as a wrestler for the past eight years. Shotaro is still showing how amazing he is in the ring and how good he is with the body manipulation as he would work on his ankle once he got the opening from tossing Hawk into the turnbuckle post to make him land on his ankle and once that happened, Shotaro had him right where he wanted him as he just worked on the ankle any chance he would get. Hawk would sometimes get time to shine when he would try to chop Ashino in the match along with a Brainbuster. What I loved about this match was that neither STRONG HEARTS or Enfants Terribles interfered in the match to give it a fair fight and it worked out better this way because it turned out to be a great match.

Shotaro would apply the Ankle Lock in to try and make Hawk tap out as he was able to get the ropes in time but he’s not done as he would be able to hit strong European Uppercuts into the match to get Hawk down and out and once Ashino ran towards Hawk, Hawk would toss him up to give him a knee to the face and a Reverse Suplex for a two count. Ashino was able to get a Running Uppercut in there before he would get him for a few German Suplexes to try and put Hawk away and ends it with a German Suplex Hold as T-Hawk kicked out of it. Ashino calls for the ending of the match as he attempts the T-Bone Suplex but Hawk would fight out of it and picked him up for the Night Ride and this could be it, but no since Ashino kicks out of it! T-Hawk would quickly get back up and hits the Cerberus to knock him down as we have a new Wrestle-1 Champion! T-Hawk has won his first major singles title in his career and it was the right time to pull that trigger in Wrestle-1. I wonder who will take the belt away from him but I would love to see these two go at it again in the future.

Rating: Bruce Prichard and a half

 

ROH Women of Honor World Title Match
Kelly Klein (c) vs. Mayu Iwatani

Review: Sure, I’ll throw ROH a bone and give one of their matches some love. Their first show since The Elite left the company has had negative reviews for the most part and now we’re gonna cover their recent show on February 10th, Bound by Honor 2019 as we’re gonna cover their Women of Honor Title match where Kelly Klein defends the title against Stardom’s very own Mayu Iwatani. The last time they fought was at the Five Star Grand Prix where Kelly defeated Mayu and it even happened during their first-round tournament for the WOH title as well. Mayu has a lot to prove here tonight as she looks to try and defeat her rival. Will Mayu win her first ROH title or will Kelly retain?

So about this match, I didn’t think it was an awful match but I also felt like they definitely could’ve done a lot better for this one as well. My problem with the match really was that it didn’t felt like a Mayu match and what I mean by that is that there was no story fully told in the match or just Mayu not giving it her all as she felt like she was just there. Also, guys, it’s a Dragon Suplex and not a Tiger Suplex, how did you guys mess that up? The match also felt very one sided with Kelly doing most of the dominating and we know how Mayu works and can give Kelly a run for her money and they just didn’t seem to be going for that role in this match which just felt odd.

Anyway, the more I think about these issues, the more I get mad about it and then realize that they’re not in Stardom and this is a different promotion, which is also not the best promotion or best division right now. One thing that really threw me off is that they treated Mayu’s Dragon Suplex like it was nothing in this match when we know it did put a lot of people away and Kelly felt like she just brushed it off and I know she’s a big girl and all, but come on. Aside from the complaints I had about the match, it wasn’t the worst one I’ve seen, just how ROH handles that division and their wrestlers. Mayu would hit a Moonsault off the top rope for a two count and then Mayu would go for a second one for the pinfall as Mayu wins the WOH Championship. I know a lot of people were mad about the fact Kelly lost it quickly after chasing it for nearly a year, but I guess Kelly is set to go to AEW and they needed a new champion crowned, at least it’s not Sumie Sakai again. The good part of this is that I can hopefully see Mayu with the title at the garden now since I’m going to that show.

Rating: Tony Schiavone and a half

 

IWGP Heavyweight Title Match
Hiroshi Tanahashi (c) vs. Jay White

Review: Well, I guess it’s time for another surprise with New Japan Pro Wrestling with their recent big show on February 11th, New Beginning in Osaka where Hiroshi Tanahashi will defend the IWGP Heavyweight Championship against Jay White. Tanahashi went from having a classic match against Kenny Omega at Wrestle Kingdom 13 to win the title for the eighth time to defending the belt against the new Bullet Club Leader. Jay White has been on a roll lately with his new leadership when he defeated Kazuchika Okada at Wrestle Kingdom, cleanly no less. Jay now looks to go for the big title in this match against the ace at the New Beginning show. Will the ace reign supreme or will it indeed be a new era in NJPW?

This match was mostly about one thing and that was the evolution of Jay White and his character in New Japan over the past year and everything he’s been doing since this new persona has been unveiled to the world. Jay’s character has evolved with how his mindset works, how he speaks, the mind games, and the following he has gained when he was the new leader of Bullet Club. Tanahashi, despite having a classic with Kenny Omega recently, he’s still injured and body is still busted and you can see that with how he moves in the ring and when Jay attacked his knee recently, he found a target point to use throughout the match. The best part about this was that the interference with Gedo was very minimal and I’m glad that was the case since that would’ve been overkill if he did it constantly, even Tanahashi would attack Gedo a few times when he just had enough of his shit.

Gedo would be used as a distraction once again to give Jay enough time to try and hit Tanahashi with the chair but would move out of the way as he accidentally hits Gedo with the chair. Tanahashi was able to get High Fly Flow in but onto Jay’s back and wasn’t enough to put him away and as he went for the second one, Jay would roll out of the way. Whenever Tanahashi would try to hit a big move in the match, Jay would use the ropes to hold himself up so that Tanahashi wouldn’t get a chance to hit a Slingblade. This was a smart move as he would do it a few times and whenever Tanahashi had him away from the ropes to try and hit it, Jay would fall to his knees to buy himself a little bit of time. Jay would attack the knee a little bit more but Tanahashi would finally get a chance to get some Dragon Screws in before applying the Lucky Cloverleaf to try and make JAy tap out but Jay had the ropes just in time. Jay caught Tanahashi to try and go for the Blade Runner but Tanahashi turned it into a Slingblade and would hit another one to put Jay down. Tanahashi is up on the ropes once again as he would attempt another High Fly Flow but Jay caught him in midair to hit the Blade Runner and he connects this time for the pinfall and we have a new champion!

I’m actually speechless as to seeing Jay White win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship here since I expected Tanahashi to at least have a few successful defenses under his belt before dropping it at the G1 Supercard or Dominion, but it looks like they backed themselves up into a corner with Jay White since he had a ton of momentum leading to this match that losing here would hurt him slightly. Jay White has been wrestling for six years and has been with New Japan for about four of them and he has now defeated the ace to win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. It looks like New Japan has a new star made to fill the void of Kenny Omega, which Jay did beat early in 2018 along with Kazuchika Okada, and now Hiroshi Tanahashi, Jay is the new star and we’re indeed in the Cutthroat era.

Rating: Brice Prichard and a half

 

 

Overall: Aside from the ROH match being lackluster, the rest of the matches would deliver in quality with W-1 and NJPW giving us my favorite matches for this set of quickies in this one. I had to reset the list a couple of times since I wasn’t happy with the lineup I originally had set up, but I was satisfied with this one.

Favorite Match: Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Jay White

Least Favorite Match: Kelly Klein vs. Mayu Iwatani

Score: 7.5/10


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

NJPW PPV Coverage

New Beginning in Osaka Fallout: New Japan’s Reshaping Process

New Beginning has caused some discussions amongst the IWC. Let’s read Valentin’s assessment of the fallout! 

Published

on

How will Jay White's new era affect New Japan Pro Wrestling ?

New Beginning has caused some discussions amongst the IWC. Let’s read Valentin’s assessment of the fallout!

New Japan’s New Beginning tour just came to an end as these lines are written, and it is safe to say that the ending of the tour, which saw Jay White becoming the IWGP Heavyweight Champion, is making people discuss and wonder what is now next in New Japan’s new era. With that said, let’s discuss the perspective of a very exciting year, for New Japan Pro Wrestling.

 If you still were not convinced, there is indeed a new era in New Japan, starting fittingly during the New Beginning tour. In a similar, yet quite different fashion than how Kazuchika Okada began his rise as New Japan’s newest top star, Jay White has done just that. It was only a matter of time for White, whom looking at his first year since coming back, was being built as a potential threat around the company’s main event scene. Now that he is New Japan’s top champion, we can only wonder what the Switchblade’s reign will bring to the table, what impact it will have. None can say for sure, but to at least try to get an idea of what’s to come, we need to take a more global view of New Japan’s landscape. Some recent events can help us figuring things out.

 One other big event to occur during this last New Beginning show was Kota Ibushi’s return, which saw him announce to the crowd that he would be staying in New Japan. Ibushi also announced he would be taking part in the New Japan Cup. The big news here being that Ibushi seems to now be fully committed to New Japan, so we can now expect him to get to the level he seemed destined to reach, which is being an established main eventer. As much as everyone knows how good Ibushi is, can we really say he’s an established Heavyweight  star so far ?

 Sure, Ibushi won the New Japan Cup once, had great outings for the Heavyweight and IC championships over the years, as well as managing to claim the NEVER Openweight championship in December, but I think most people expect more at this point. Hiroshi Tanahashi has said himself that Ibushi has everything to be the future of New Japan, and with no storm inside of Bullet Club to be unwillingly apart of, there is nothing stopping Ibushi from getting to the spot he possibly should already be in. With the early ending to Tanahashi’s potential last reign as Heavyweight champion, there will be a spot to fill when the Ace starts stepping out of what we tend to call “New Japan’s big four”. This year should give us some answers if whether or not Ibushi will be the man to eventually take that spot.

 Speaking of members of that “big four”, let’s now look at another big topic concerning New Japan’s main event scene. Since recapturing the Intercontinental championship, Tetsuya Naito has made his intentions clear. The leader of L.I.J wants to hold both the Heavyweight and Intercontinental championships, at the same time. As it surely looks like 2019 will be another big year for Naito’s group, it’s quite easy to expect the faction’s leader to get something more than a third IC championship run, as this chapter of his own story is reaching its end. Let’s not forget that this summer, Naito will not have been Heavyweight champion in three years, which is quite long even in New Japan standards, when you are one of the company’s top stars.

 Making history has been a recent trend with New Japan, and another opportunity to do just that is presenting itself with Naito.

 The point now is that New Japan needs to build up wrestlers for years to come, and it is not just be about Jay White becoming the Ace’s main foe. It is also about re-establishing guys who have been waiting for their opportunity to rise, which are long overdue by now. New era tends to mean new faces, and while I’ve been focusing on the main event scene so far, it doesn’t stop there.

 Without even mentioning the constant waves of Young Lions coming in, New Japan has started establishing new faces throughout the divisions in the last few years. Hiromu Takahashi and Taiji Ishimori in the Jr division, Roppongi 3K in the Jr tag team division, EVIL & SANADA both as a team and as singles competitors. Let’s not forget about Zack Sabre Jr, Juice Robinson and Will Ospreay as Gaijins on the rise. The most recent example being Shingo Takagi, who will likely look further than being Jr Heavyweight Tag Team champion.

To make it short, New Japan has entered a reshaping process. The company is making a bet for the future, and if recent history has taught us one thing, it is that the last time such a bet has been taken, it worked out.

With that in mind, how do you envision New Japan’s future ?

 


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

Connect on Facebook

Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending Today