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The Shield Makes Monday Nights Fun Again

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This is one of those blogs that should make fellow Chairshot blogger Sarah Hirsch happy. Because of WWE’s decision to reunite The Shield, watching Monday Night Raw has become fun once again.

Can I get a Hallelujah from the congregation?

It took WWE coming to its senses to make Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns a “thing” once again to keep many of us wrestling fans from falling asleep on Monday nights. It took one simple idea that worked before to reinvent itself, bringing many of the WWE Universe to its feet in excitement.

The current storyline of The Shield vs. Braun Strowman, Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre is “must see” television the same we tuned in before to watch the then unholy trinity come out of the stands to attack anyone and everyone who got in their way.

The decision to recreate WWE history also makes the current run by Reigns as the Universal Champion a little more plausible given fans aren’t in love with the idea of the four-time champion running in a pack by himself. Having both the Universal and Intercontinental Title around the waists of the Hounds of Justice is reminiscent of the Four Horsemen running through the NWA like a freight train with no need to slow down momentum.

There is another reason why this rebrand is important to WWE – the almighty dollar.

“When The Shield was its peak in 2014, it was a top merchandise seller that was outselling star-studded factions like Evolution and legends like Hulk Hogan, and it also proved to be huge ratings draw on Raw,” writes Blake Oestriecher of Forbes.com. “Just a year later after the three stars had gone their separate ways, they were all top five merchandise movers as individuals, which appeared to remain true in 2017 while Reigns and Rollins have also remained top sellers during the absence of Ambrose. That explains why WWE quickly released three new The Shield t-shirts immediately after they rejoined forces on Raw a couple of weeks ago.”

The connection between all three stars, who are some of the biggest names in both the company and the business is what wrestling has become. They are this generation’s NWO. They are brilliantly paired together like Arn Anderson, Tully Blanchard and Barry Windham (Ric Flair was in a class by himself). They are everything WWE has needed in a badass clique since Degeneration X.

The trio, regardless of how long they will remain together, just works for this New Era WWE is preaching and praying for a miracle. Even if wrestling stables are the “in” thing anymore as they once were as Oestriecher writes, at least they have drawn the attention of fans needing a shot of adrenaline. There is only so much The New Day can do to increase fan support.

At some point, the band will once again break up. It could happen at Hell in a Cell (Gosh, I hope not). It could mean Ambrose turns on his cronies (Gosh, I hope not). It could also mean WWE takes advantage of The Shield and plays along with fan support at least until WrestleMania 35. If something works, why change it?

For now, it’s the best thing going today on Monday nights. Two factions (or something like that) battling and getting a positive response from the live crowds. What a concept. WWE may be on to something.

For now, let’s just enjoy the ride and see where it takes us. In the meantime, The Shield is running wild again, and that is a good thing for WWE and the wrestling business.

 


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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The Good, Bad and Ugly: WWE NXT (01/23/2019)

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Good Bad Ugly WWE NXT

The go-home show for WWE NXT Takeover: Phoenix is in the books, and Bobby Fernandes takes a look at the episode from the Good, Bad, and Ugly perspective!

WWE NXT Takeover is coming on Saturday Night before a huge Sunday Royal Rumble.  The stories finalize before the big PPV and everyone has one final chance to solidify their place on the show.  Raw was packed with a ton of content, SmackDown in contrast was not, but was pure quality with the exception of a few small issues.  Now its NXT’s turn to get us and keep us sucked in.  Will NXT do their job as usual? 

THE GOOD

Opening Segment w/ Velveteen Dream

What an interesting way to open the show.  Dream always has a spectacular time in front of the camera in any fashion.  It is no secret that he has been a bit unhappy with his current “drawbacks” and wants more.  Just when he makes a claim to the North American Championship, Adam Cole and Bobby Fish, interrupted Velveteen Dream.  This would be such a brilliant feud.  Undisputed Era is just fantastic and brings the best to the audience constantly.  Dream doing what he does best, got in Undisputed’s head before fleeing safely away.  Very interesting open. 

Danny Burch and Oney Lorcan vs. Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel

Burch and Lorcan are dangerously Good.  They pair up so well, and have great matches with anyone they face.  Aichner and Barthel didn’t seem like anything special from previous times but the chances for a better showing with Danny and Oney increase significantly.  Oney Lorcan got singled out early on by Barthel and Aichner and took a lot of punishment until Burch came in hot and took control.  Lorcan again however got singled out.  Aichner did some awesome stuff in there nearly getting the win, but Lorcan would not surrender.  There was a lot of action here.  Oney Lorcan is so freaking Good.  After a seriously kick ass back and forth match, Oney Lorcan gets a rollup for the victory.     

Io Shirai and Kairi Sane vs.  Tanea Brooks and Amber Nova

Shirai and Nova started out, full steam.  Shirai has a unique style and always delivers.  The same can be said about the ever popular Kairi Sane.  Her gimmick, style and absolutely talented abilities have been well showcased and appreciated.  Tanea Brooks is a powerful wrestler and had a Good energy.  She just was a bit of an afterthought while in the ring with Sane and Shirai.  With the Main Roster’s Women’s Tag Team division coming up Sane and Shirai could make a strong case for those new shiny Championship belts once things are in motion.  They certainly won this week in a decisive fashion.  Nothing great but passible as Good overall. 

Velveteen Dream vs. Bobby Fish w/ Adam Cole “BAY BAY”

Oh my God, what an awesome treat here.  We have an incredible match set up, and a surprise one at that.  The presence of these two, the respect they demand is unprecedented.  Bobby Fish is an unsung hero as to how talented he truly is.  Both competitors are greatly unique.  As it should be expected, the action went back and forth and was plentiful.  Dream is all over the ring, continuous action.  Fish finally got a chance and went after Dream’s legs and knees.  Great move keeping Dream down.  Fish really got in deep with a half crab on the injured knee of Dream, but Dream does not quit.  As hard as Fish tried he just couldn’t get Dream to stop but Fish countered an elbow drop an ended up almost getting dream to tap, but Dream again came back.  Dream hit his “Purple Rainmaker” for the win.  Adam Cole of course ran in but Dream got out in time.  Great match.       

Ricochet Promo

Ricochet is one of the most talented high flyers of all time, that will be repeated often his entire career.  He moves around like no other.  Gargano is called Johnny Wrestling confidently for well deserve reasons.  They will put it all out there.  Hyping it will only get Good attention and heat.  Ricochet is so confident and wears the North American Title well.  Ricochet’s Achilles heel is his mic skills.  He could use a Good hype man or woman so that he can only focus on his in ring talents.  Johnny Gargano could not interrupt fast enough and luckily for everyone he isn’t Bad to listen too.  Gargano and Ricochet did not waste any time and went at it.  Out of nowhere, Ciampa the NXT Heavyweight Champion attacked Ricochet coming to the aid of his former friend and heated rival.  Very interesting.  Of course Aleister Black came out and beat the hell of Ciampa for his trouble.  Gargano came to Ciampa’s rescue hitting Black with a devastating “superkick.”  The duo previously known as “DIY” dominated both Black and Ricochet before leaving their rivals laying in the ring.  Ciampa and Gargano seemed like they were about to bury the hatchet until Gargano’s wife Candace put a stop to it.  Decent promo and end to a successful week.

THE BAD – No

THE UGLY – and No

FINAL TALLY

  • GOOD – 5
  • BAD – 0
  • UGLY- 0

OVERALL

Good which means it must be NXT.  Again, another successful, entertaining, content filled NXT.  They literally had as much impressive content as SmackDown did and they did it in an hour.  NXT sets the standard and hopefully WWE Main Roster watches and takes notes every chance they get. 

NXT continues to be the most entertaining brand of all weekly.  The sky is the limit and with HHH steering the ship, the momentum is surely going to continue for some time.  They have a lot of fresh talent as well as established Superstars, and Takeover should deliver above expectations.  That is what NXT does. 


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Daily DeMarco: New Japan’s “New Beginning in USA’ Cards Are Irresponsible

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New Japan New Beginnings In USA

Greg DeMarco weighs in on the sure-to-be-controversial New Japan “New Beginning In USA” cards that were recently released.

Well hello there! I know it’s been a few days since I last posted, and if you follow me on Facebook, you know what’s been going on (see that here). But I am excited to be back, and excited to share my opinions with you!

So…shall we?

New Japan’s United States events, called “New Beginning In USA,” finally got their announced cards today.

January 30 in Los Angeles:

  • Alex Coughlin vs. Clark Connors
  • Jonathan Gresham vs. Tyler Bateman
  • Colt Cabana vs. Shane Taylor
  • Brody King & Marty Scurll vs. Killer Elite Squad
  • Jeff Cobb vs. Karl Fredericks
  • David Finlay vs. Chuckie T
  • Tracy Williams & Juice Robinson vs. Roppongi Vice (Trent Beretta & Rocky Romero)

February 1 in North Carolina:

  • Karl Fredericks vs. Clark Connors
  • John Skyler & Colt Cabana vs. Shane Taylor & Lance Archer
  • Tracer X vs. Great-O-Kharn
  • Jonathan Gresham & Jeff Cobb vs. Brody King & Marty Scurll
  • Alex Coughlin vs. Davey Boy Smith Jr.
  • Tracy Williams & David Finlay vs. Rocky Romero & Chuckie T
  • IWGP United States Championship: Juice Robinson (c) vs. Trent Beretta

February 2 in Nashville:

  • Karl Fredericks vs. Alex Coughlin
  • Jonathan Gresham and Colt Cabana vs. Shane Taylor and Lance Archer
  • Harlem Bravado vs. Great-O-Kharn
  • Clark Connors vs. Marty Scurll
  • Jeff Cobb vs. Brody King
  • Tracy Williams, David Finlay and Juice Robinson vs. Rocky Romero, Chuckie T and Trent

These shows aren’t bad, but they aren’t New Japan cards! The company isn’t even sending over any lower card guys. I know you have a concurrent tour in Japan, but like you couldn’t spare Jushin “Thunder” Liger?

Don’t get me wrong, there are great matches on each show. The problem is they are being promoted as New Japan, and that’s simply not true. This is “ALL IN was self-funded by Cody Rhodes and The Young Bucks” levels of untrue.

Hell, much like ALL IN, these are basically ROH cards (with less ROH talent).  I love Ring Of Honor, but they need to focus more on their own product and less on partnerships that are doing nothing but hurting them in the end.


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