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Opinion

Writing The Book: The 2019 Women’s Royal Rumble Match

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Becky Lynch Charlotte Flair WWE Top 25 Matches 2018

Should Becky Lynch win the WWE Women’s Royal Rumble? Abe gives you his thoughts when he’s Writing The Book! What do you think?

Welcome to “Writing the Book.” This is where I attempt to book wrestling pay-per-views, storylines, and matches in an interesting yet logical matter. This week we have the Women’s Royal Rumble!

This was a tall task because people don’t normally book these kinds of matches alone. However, I decided to challenge myself with that headache. Turns out, it ended up being quite enjoyable. The Royal Rumble is the favorite event of the year for most fans so being able to write out the whole thing was just as fun. I’ll explain a few things before the first entrant walks out.

I’m having this match be the main event just like last year. I’ve written a couple backstage segments that will occur throughout the night. Ronda Rousey vs Sasha Banks will happen one or two matches before the Rumble. After Sasha loses, Triple H meets her backstage. He explains that Billie Kay and Peyton Royce insisted they enter as a single entrant. “That being said, a slot in the Rumble just opened up”, Trips says as he hands her a card with an unseen number. There will be an additional unrelated backstage segment after the opener but you’ll know more about that when you get to Entry #19.

There will be no Trish or Lita this time. They had their moments at the last Rumble and Evolution so I wanted to give the free spots to NXT talent and past superstars that haven’t gotten the chance to make that proper return.

Any number you see along the way in parentheses indicates the order at which someone was eliminated. That will help you keep track since you don’t have the visual of a ring in front of you. All surprise entrants will have a link to the wrestler’s entrance music attached so you can envision the moment.

#1 Alexa Bliss

Alexa enters first, grabs a microphone, and voices her displeasure over drawing the first entrant slot. She goes on to say her new talk show has brought in ratings and even managed the women’s division when called upon by Baron Corbin. Alexa demands better treatment. Then the music for Entrant #2 hits.

#2 Shayna Baszler 

The total antithesis of the image of Alexa Bliss. Shayna doesn’t make excuses and demands fights rather than shying away from them. Michael Cole announces her as a 2-time NXT Women’s Champion and member of Ronda Rousey’s Horsewomen stable (pun intended). I wanted her to squash Alexa in seconds but realized she is a 5-time champion so she gets to stay a while longer.

#3-4 Alicia Fox, Ember Moon 

Alicia Fox enters to help Alexa and helps for a little bit but is no match for Shayna. Baszler eliminates Fox (1) but only tosses Alexa aside. Ember Moon, Shayna’s former rival from NXT, then enters and begins to furiously brawl with Baszler.

#5 Billie Kay & Peyton Royce

They enter together as one entrant because why wouldn’t they. Holding hands while their free hands each wield a microphone. Their promo gets so obnoxious that it makes Moon and Baszler stop fighting. It’s like their entrance at Evolution except they don’t get eliminated right away.

#6-7 Liv Morgan, Toni Storm

Liv enters but doesn’t have her teammates with her so she can’t do much. Toni Storm then makes her entrance with her shiny new NXTUK Women’s Championship. Between her Mae Young Classic win and UK appearances, enough fans should be familiar enough to know she’s a credible threat. As the future of the company, we need as many eyes on her as possible.

#8-10 Sasha Banks, Sarah Logan, Bayley

Two things to notice when Sasha enters: her arm is wrapped from the Rousey match and she goes straight for Shayna. She knows the connection between Baszler and Rousey and wants to take her frustration out. Shayna attacks the arm and neutralizes her immediately. Sarah Logan joins the fray and helps Liv, followed by Bayley who helps Sasha.

There are now three separate tag teams in the ring. The Riott Squad, The IIconics, and Sasha & Bayley. They all circle the ring while the commentators remind us that women’s tag team champions will be crowned at the next pay-per-view. The ring is filling up so let’s clean it out. Sasha and Bayley toss the IIconics (2). Shayna then throws both Sasha and Bayley over simultaneously (3 & 4). Seeds of the MMA vs WWE Horsewomen continue to be planted. Sasha is incredibly frustrated and Bayley has to calm her down.

#11 Lacey Evans

Shayna finally dispatches Alexa Bliss (5). Alexa is exiting up the ramp as Lacey Evans walks down. Lacey mocks and laughs at Bliss. Cole reminds us of their encounter from Monday. Frustrated, Alexa turns around and attacks Lacey from behind. Alexa throws her in the ring right into Ember Moon who is waiting to throw her out (6). Lacey Evans now has her first main roster feud against a babyface Alexa Bliss.

Currently in ring: Shayna Baszler, Ember Moon, Liv Morgan, Sarah Logan, Toni Storm

#12-13 Ruby Riott, Tamina

Ruby Riott completes the Riott Squad trio and Tamina adds some muscle.

#14 Bianca Belair

I want her in this match regardless if she wins the NXT Women’s Championship the night before. She’s too athletic and charismatic to not have multiple title reigns in her future so the casual fans need to be introduced to her.

#15-16 Mickie James, Dana Brooke

After these two make their entrances, Bianca eliminates both of them (7 & 8). It creates instant credibility.

The Riott Squad change their focus to Toni Storm. The three of them try to toss Toni over but Ember saves her by pulling Ruby off. Toni is then able to break free and eliminates Sarah and Liv in the process (9 & 10).

Currently in ring: Baszler, Moon, Storm, Riott, Belair, Tamina 

#17 Rhea Ripley

Just when Toni Storm overcomes the Riott Squad and thinks she has a chance to breathe, Rhea Ripley’s music hits and Toni’s face turns pale. Rhea is not happy about losing that UK Title to Toni and it’s visibly apparent. She’s aiming to clean house.

#18 Zelina Vega

Zelina comes in like a spitfire with her aerial attacks and ranas. Her speed makes Rhea and Tamina flustered and knocks them off their balance. Ripley and Tamina eventually catch her and throw her over together (11). Bianca attempts to capitalize on them having their backs turned but numbers and size aren’t in her favor. She gets tossed after a brief but impressive showing (12).

#19 Nia Jax/Becky Lynch

Allow me a second to explain this one. Have Becky and Asuka open the show. Becky loses. Nia meets Becky backstage after her loss. Remember when Becky punched Nia as revenge after her match at TLC? Nia retaliates at the start of this show. Becky’s face is in serious pain and needs medical attention.

Fast forward to Nia making her entrance at the Rumble. Becky, wearing a face mask for her nose, ambushes her on the ramp while the doctors attempt to get her to stop. Lynch assaults her enough to make the doctors turn their attention to Nia. Becky starts to walk back up the ramp, pauses, looks back at the ring, waits for audience approval, then decides to enter the match as she shoves doctors off of her. She throws Nia’s partner, Tamina, over upon entry (13). Nia Jax never enters.

Currently in the ring: Baszler, Moon, Storm, Riott, Ripley, Lynch

#20 Victoria

This absolutely needs to happen. She wasn’t involved with the inaugural women’s rumble, Evolution, Raw 25, or Smackdown 1000. I don’t understand why. She’s a future Hall of Famer and helped shape this generation’s female superstars alongside Trish, Lita, and Molly Holly. Victoria is also in the final year of her career so she wont get an opportunity like this again. Getting a stare down with Becky Lynch once Victoria enters the ring would be a pretty great moment.

#21 Nikki Cross 

One of the main roster’s newest and brightest stars needs to be among the final group of competitors. Cross indiscriminately begins to pick fights with the current field.

#22-24 Sonya Deville, Natalya, Mandy Rose

Sonya and Mandy are able to team up and Natalya enters as another viable candidate to go deep into the match.

The ring now has eleven entrants so it’s time to filter some out. Rhea completes her mini run by eliminating fan-favorites, Nikki Cross and Victoria (14, 15). Toni Storm takes advantage and gets rid of Ripley (16), thus setting up their inevitable championship rematch. Becky Lynch makes her first big elimination in Shayna Baszler (17), who has been the top performer thus far. This also furthers the horsewomen storyline. Remember, Baszler is the reason Sasha and Bayley got thrown out.

Currently in the ring: Moon, Storm, Riott, Lynch, Deville, Nattie, Rose

#25 Kaitlyn

A former Divas Champion that made her return in the last Mae Young Classic. She didn’t show much signs of ring rust and the fans love her so I’d be open to welcoming her back in the form of a main roster spot. Her experience, strength and championship history make her an immediate problem to the women in the ring.

#26 Naomi

As expected, she makes a b-line toward Mandy Rose. Sonya tries to pull her off and is rewarded with a flurry of forearms. Naomi throws Sonya over, then Mandy (18,19).

#27 Kairi Sane

She replaced an injured Alicia Fox in last year’s rumble and returns once again as a surprise entrant. This time, she enters as a former NXT Champion and is even closer to making the main roster. She needs to be showcased.

After Kairi enters and gets some offense in, Ruby Riott eliminates recent foe, Natalya (20).

Currently in the ring: Moon, Storm, Riott, Lynch, Kaitlyn, Naomi, Sane

#28-30 Lana, Charlotte Flair, Carmella 

Lana enters, and doesn’t do much, so Becky gets rid of her (21). Charlotte enters at 29, making her already great chances even better. As the winner of Mixed Match Challenge, Carmella is awarded with being #30. Thankfully, that’s one less slot I had to worry about. Now we can begin the final sequence.

Final Nine: Moon, Storm, Riott, Lynch, Kaitlyn, Naomi, Sane, Flair, Carmella

Ruby Riott starts a hot streak by removing Kaitlyn and Kairi Sane from the match (22, 23). Toni Storm finally meets her match in Charlotte (24). Storm was in the match for about 45 minutes. Ember is still climbing in the 50s.

Spots and sequences occur for another couple minutes then Charlotte claims another with Carmella (25). Ruby nabs a fourth elimination by overcoming Naomi (26).

FINAL FOUR: Ember Moon, Ruby Riott, Becky Lynch, Charlotte Flair

Two from Raw and two from Smackdown. Unfortunately, the two Raw ladies have to exit the match. Charlotte gets Ruby (27) and Becky gets Ember (28). Ruby lasted for 45 minutes and Ember hit the hour mark.

Down to Charlotte and Becky. It essentially turns into a mini match. Five minutes of chops, suplexes and trading submissions. The kendo stick Charlotte likes to use also gets involved. Becky locks Charlotte in the Disarm Her. Charlotte tries reaching for the bottom rope so she can escape to the outside. Becky then releases and locks the submission on the arm Charlotte reached with. Becky now attempts to throw Charlotte over.

Charlotte grabs the top rope with one arm and it hurts. She then grabs the rope with the other arm but the pain from the submissions is unbearable. Becky had them locked in for a long time. Because Charlotte cannot use her arms to stop the momentum, she is thrown over (29). Becky Lynch wins the Royal Rumble.

*****

I know to many this is an uninspiring decision. The most pushed star in the company isn’t even in the match but I put her in it and allowed her to win the whole thing. I think the Royal Rumble should be won by the biggest star, though. When Becky Lynch tagged with John Cena a couple weeks ago, the crowd started chanting “We want Becky” when John Cena was in the ring. John Cena is considered by many as the greatest ever yet the fans preferred Becky Lynch. If this was Money in the Bank, Ruby or Ember would have been my winner.

It works as a story too. Nia Jax took away Becky Lynch’s opportunity to face Ronda Rousey, but Becky took it back. Michael Cole and Corey Graves will surely be losing their mind at ringside. Someone not entered in the match just won the Royal Rumble. We’ve seen people get ambushed prior to entering before but we’ve never seen the attacker actually go on to win the whole thing. That will make fans tune in to Raw.

Management will decide that Becky was justified. However, once Nia Jax heals from her “injuries”, Becky Lynch will defend her Wrestlemania spot against her at either Elimination Chamber or Fastlane. Roman Reigns and Daniel Bryan did something similar in 2015.

Many are speculating Ronda Rousey to face Charlotte at Mania but that’s not THE match. We’ve seen that already. It was great but now we have the chance to see another dream match for the first time on the grandest stage. Ronda Rousey vs Becky Lynch is the best chance there is to having women headline Wrestlemania for the first time ever. The only other matchup on par with that one would be if Seth Rollins challenged Brock Lesnar. The story is already there. Their first match got cancelled, they started an online feud, then Ronda cost Becky her women’s championship at TLC. I ingrained the WWE vs MMA Horsewomen feud in the Rumble match for that reason. Now that Asuka is champion, I would have no problem with her gaining heel tendencies as Charlotte steps up for a Mania rematch.

 


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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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DeMarco’s Things I Learned From WWE Smackdown On FOX (June 17, 2022)

Greg DeMarco presents what he learned watching WWE Smackdown On FOX for June 17, 2022, featuring Matt Riddle, Vince McMahon, Pat McAfee, and more!

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WWE Smackdown Riddle Reigns

Greg DeMarco presents what he learned watching WWE Smackdown On FOX for June 17, 2022, featuring Matt Riddle, Vince McMahon, Pat McAfee, and more!

WWE presented Smackdown on Friday night, June 17, 2022, from “Moneyapolis” featuring the “big fight feel” main event between Roman Reigns and Matt Riddle, with The Tribal Chief’s Undisputed WWE Universal Championship on the line. We also continued down the road to Money In The Bank in Vegas.

RK-Bro Is Effectively Done

The video package and all of Matt Riddle’s tributes to Randy Orton are just a little bit too much. Riddle does “too much” very well–in fact, it’s his character. But the amount of tribute being played to Randy Orton seems to be a set-up for Orton’s eventual return (whenever that might be) OPPOSITE Riddle. Maybe it’s in the Royal Rumble, maybe after.

Regardless of how it happens (and much of that has to do with his surgery and rehabilitation process), I think we are closer than ever to a heel Randy Orton opposing the babyface Matt Riddle.

Madcap Moss Is Undeniably Over

“Madcap just might be a guy.” – Pat McAfee

Pat McAfee knows what he’s talking about on this one–Madcap is indeed a guy. Riddick Moss always had the tools, just had injury issues. Since making his return to competition as Baron “Happy” Corbin’s sidekick, all Moss has done is prove his worth to WWE. He’s got a good look. He can cut a good promo. He’s vastly a underrated in-ring storyteller. And above all else, he has “it.”

WWE is always looking to add to the main event rotation, but it seems harder to crack that right now. But Madcap Moss has what it takes to do just that.

Montez Ford Is Gonna Be A (Solo) Star

The Street Profits are a fantastic act, and are insanely over. But Montez is a guy–a guy who the company can build around. While I feel bad for Angelo Dawkins, I (along with so many others) see Ford being a solo star.

We’re Getting Baron Corbin vs. Pat McAfee At SummerSlam

It’s the perfect set-up:

  • Baron Corbin is highly regarded within the organization as one of the safest workers around, a point that has been made by Randy Orton himself.
  • Pat McAfee is a big-moment superstar, and SummerSlam is the moment for him.

And for the record, I love it. While I an a big time purveyor of “Baron Corbin Sucks,” I know what he can do in the ring. And him vs. Pat McAfee would have Nashville rocking–and that is what McAfee in the ring is all about.

Vince McMahon Is Literally A Man Of Steel

If you have listened to any of Bruce Prichard’s podcasts, you know Vince McMahon believes you “don’t sell.” Not in the ring, but whenever the world has turned against you in any way–including lawsuits and investigations–you don’t sell it. You hold your head high, and live above it all.

That’s exactly what the boss did when opening up WWE Smackdown On FOX. It’s entirely possible that the plan changed along the way, and we were going to get “Mr. McMahon” at some point–but what happened is trademark Vince. Not the character, but the man. And if we expected anything else, we haven’t been paying attention.

Matt Riddle Is Now A Made Man

Matt Riddle and Roman Reigns delivered a pay per view (or premium live event…pick your poison) quality main event on WWE Smackdown on FOX, on a night where the world was likely watching. Tonight was his moment, and even in a loss, he delivered.

With a singular world champion–and one who likely isn’t losing anytime soon–it’s hard to say when Riddle could become a world champ. But the stipulation added to tonight’s match (which wasn’t discussed enough on air) means that Matt Riddle now cannot challenge Roman Reigns again (that’s how the graphic showed it). That screams a Money In The Bank or Royal Rumble win to me.

It’s also highly possible that a Seth Rollins wins the Money In The Bank briefcase, and his cash in splits the titles back up, opening the door for Riddle come next spring.

Either way–one fact remains true: Matt Riddle is now a made man, and doing it on his own.


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