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Opinion

Good, Bad, and Ugly: WWE Raw (02/04/2019)

Still a lot of Good from WWE Raw this week?

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Good Bad Ugly WWE Raw

Did WWE Monday Night Raw continue to be good, or did things get ugly this week? Bobby Fernandes tells you–now!

The Road to WrestleMania continues with imperative action ahead on all of the major WWE shows.  As always the week starts with Monday Night Raw.  Raw has been filled to the max with content weekly, almost doubling both SmackDown and an extremely scarce NXT last week.  It seems to be making up for lost time getting everything set up for the Grand Finale at WrestleMania.  Will the super flow of Monday Night Raw continue, or will the pipeline get clogged up before the big day?

THE GOOD

(Post Liv Morgan’s Match) Non-Title Match – Sarah Logan vs. Raw Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey (C)

Sarah Logan came in hot and surprised Rousey before getting locked into an arm bar and escaping out of the ring.  Logan put up a hell of a fight until a quick turnaround.  Rousey beat Logan down and got Logan into an arm bar for the win.  It looked like Ruby Riott was next but she decided to retreat to her girls. Logan and Rousey looked a lot better than the first match with Morgan. 

Heavy Machinery vs. Lucha House Party vs. B Team vs. The Revival

Non-stop action, all teams making themselves known.  Good to see the B Team and of course the new popular kids, Heavy Machinery.  The Revival especially looked Good while locking up with Heavy Machinery.  Otis and Tucker cleaned house and dominated everyone clearing the ring, Bushwhacker walk and all.  Dorado did some amazing stuff as well, but it was The Revival that took advantage and won with a “Shatter Machine.”  Good match, great Tag Team Content! 

Kurt Angle Retiring?

Kurt Angle having a historic, insanely successful career and life, seemingly was about to retire.  Out comes Baron Corbin.  As things got heated, when Corbin is talking, out comes Drew McIntyre.  As Corbin and McIntyre were about to kill Angle, out comes Strowman.  Angle with such a Monster backing him made Corbin and McIntyre flee.  Not sure how or what this will become but this looked and played out well.  Good segment. 

Sasha Banks and Bayley vs. Alicia Fox and Nikki Cross

Nikki Cross and the even more psycho Alicia Fox attacked Sasha Banks and beat the hell out of her.  Bayley fought back but to no avail after being slammed into the screen.  Fox and Cross made their way to the ring however it looked as though nothing further could happen as their opponents were already beaten down.  Bayley would not be denied and would fight even with a visibly hurt partner.  Bayley held her own beating both Cross and Fox all around the ring, but ran out of steam and had no help. 

Again this week Alicia Fox was just horrible.  She really needs to stop.  Nikki Cross on the other hand looked great as always.  Cross is very impressive and could potentially be a Good fit with just about anyone on the roster.  Just when it seemed that Fox had Bayley down, Bayley rolled up Fox for the victory.  Although Alicia Fox was horrible in this match, overall it was okay.  Bayley and Sasha are natural fits for the Women’s Tag Team Championship picture. 

Jeff Jarrett w/ Road Dog vs. Elias

It was awesome seeing Road Dogg do his whole DX deal.  Nostalgia is a safe and Good bet with WWE always.  Jarrett has seen better days, but don’t let that fool you, he can work.  The man has been wrestling a very long time, and single handedly fist fought WWE with multiple ventures in his career.  It is a Good thing to see him around.  Elias is absolutely talented all around and hopefully will continue to be used often.  They need to stop singing that song already, enough is enough.  Elias interrupted this mess and the crowd applauded him.  Elias was savage.  Even when heeling out, the crowd cheered.  Jarrett pursued Elias and held his own.  Elias never stays down long though and took control.  Honestly it is very impressive how Jarrett hung in there.  After coming back and looking strong, Elias hit a “Driftaway” and got the win over Jarrett.  Road Dogg then attacked Elias.  Road Dogg strutted and saluted Elias with a “suck it” while Jarrett hit Elias in the back with a guitar.  There was some crap stuff here but the match overall wasn’t bad and certainly not ugly.    

Lio Rush w/ IC Champion Bobby Lashley vs. Finn Balor

Good way to open up the third hour.  Finn Balor is a crowd pleaser and a huge talent.  Lashley is red hot right now, and since winning the IC Title has been even more impressive.  Surprisingly Lio Rush came out in his gear ready for a fight.  Bobby Lashley beat the hell out of Finn Balor abusing his already bruised up ribs.  What looked like a non-title match Balor vs. Lashley became Lio Rush vs. injured Finn Balor.  Lio Rush really is a talented worker and can really go.  Balor came back hard but was taken out by Lashley before the ref barred Lashley from ringside.  This did not stop Lio Rush who continued his assault. 

Even when Balor would get ahead, Rush would take control back with a great counter.  It really looked like Rush had the match won several times but Balor prevailed.  He came back hit the “Coupe de Grace” and got the Win!  Lashley ran out but Balor rolled out to safety.  Good, solid and surprising.  This Match was Good. 

Paige

She was just promoting her movie, but always Good to see her.  She was knocked off way to soon.  She just was so talented.  No matter her history, controversy and all Paige was and is Awesome! 

Moment of Bliss w/ EC3

Wow!  Good choice, and great wuperstar.  EC3 is very interesting here, as it is unclear how he will be used and has so much potential.  He really is a star.  Bliss was impressed.  Out comes Nia Jax and Tamina Snuka.  It seems the deep hate for Nia Jax has dissipated.  Just as she was about to ruin it for herself, Dean Ambrose came out.  This is where things got hot.  Dean Ambrose deeply disrespected EC3 until EC3 had enough and started a fight.  Looks like he will finally see some action, and against a name like Dean Ambrose. 

Dean Ambrose vs. EC3

This match has a ton of potential and can be a huge thing for EC3 especially with all of the hype around Ambrose possibly leaving after Wrestlemania.  Not to mention both guys can really work well.  Both guys looked sharp in there and Ambrose looked particularly aggressive.  This could have been a Good long drawn out match but EC3 gets a very quick rollup for the surprising win.  The end was stupid but it’s a big win and a Good win for EC3.

Kurt Angle and Braun Strowman vs. Baron Corbin and Drew McIntyre

Strowman and McIntyre are literally a big deal.  This could be a huge feud with amazing results and a pushing point for either guy.  As expected early on Angle was hot but was overcome by the heels and taken down most of the match.  Angle would constantly fight back but couldn’t get ahead.  The Monster laid in wait, foaming at the mouth.  McIntyre again got Angle into his own “ankle lock.”  Angle persevered and got the tag.  Strowman came in just destroying everyone.  Strowman was all worked up and let it all out in there, but the heels got control once again.  McIntyre and Corbin worked well together.  McIntyre really is a great superstar with unbelievable talent.  Now Angle fully recovered waited for his turn.  He wanted another shot in at Corbin and McIntyre.  Angle came back in big time, with German Suplexes to take control.  He hit the Angle slam but McIntyre made the save.  Then the absolutely most absurd moment took place.  Braun was disqualified for hitting Corbin and was not the legal man.  Corbin and McIntyre win by DQ.  Decent match with a stupid finish.  Corbin and McIntyre continued the assault but Strowman overpowered them and destroyed them on the steel steps to finish the show.

THE BAD

Opening Segment w/ Stephanie McMahon and Becky Lynch

Before her name could be introduced, “The Man” graced the masses on Monday Night Raw.  Rousey was angry last week, and told Becky what she plans to do at Wrestlemania. The back and forth was Good, but there was a lot of recap material.  McMahon’s reasoning for this public meeting, is Becky now mandatory will have to see a doctor before she is allowed to compete again.  Becky Lynch resisted and even insulted the “Billionaire Princess.”  She made the wrong enemy, and Stephanie again claimed a suspension for Becky Lynch if she doesn’t get cleared.  Becky then threatened Stephanie.  Becky then attacked Stephanie and couldn’t be stopped until McMahon kicked her in the knee and quickly retreated.  This was not great, kind of pointless and didn’t need to happen.  Not a Good start.  The follow up with Rousey in the back didn’t help anything either.  Rousey is getting better week by week though.

Non-Title Match – Raw Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey (C) vs. Liv Morgan w/ Riott Squadd

Liv Morgan getting some much deserved air time is a Good move, even if it is to be feeder fish to Rousey.  Of course Morgan wanted no part of the Champ.  This was literally quick and awful.  If this was the plan, why? 

THE UGLY – It wasn’t pretty but nothing pure ugly either. 

FINAL TALLY

  • GOOD- 10
  • BAD- 2
  • UGLY- 0

OVERALL

Good* but it needs to be mentioned that this week was Not as Good as Raw has been lately.  Again there was a ton of content, a lot of faces onscreen and stories continued.  There was an abundance of action.  However, Raw was a little off tonight, something wasn’t right.  It did the job but wasn’t up to par. 

Well there we are, another Raw closer to the Big Night.  SmackDown is up next followed by the ever popular NXT brands.  WrestleMania’s pot continues to simmer and will soon boil over.  Every step from here out is for the sake of WrestleMania, which should mean that we are all in for some big things. 


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Opinion

AJ’s Controversial? Wrestling Opinions 10.12.21

AJ feels like spouting off about a few wrestling topics that bug him. How controversial are they though?

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As Eric Bischoff, President of WCW once said, Controversy Creates Cash…no I’m serious; it’s even the title of a book that he did. Everyone has their hot takes on professional wrestling and some are always wide eyed and kind of shocking to some. There are some of us that will have same opinions or chastise me on a show or an article maybe but hey, don’t hate the player, hate The Game.

Maybe there are some that the readers at home agree with or you want to also be the one to chastise me, @PhenomenalAJB on Twitter. This one is going to be fun!

#1- There are more things than just WWE/AEW and are better majority of the time

There are many people that will rant, rave and complain that the mainstream product is so bland and boring and the classic, “Who even watches this trash?” Whether you love the flippy dippy do’s like I don’t or long drawn out storylines that peter out very quickly because fans aren’t invested in a story or character. To those people, I will say something very bold, very confusing and very… very controversial…

THERE ARE OTHER COMPANIES YOU CAN WATCH ON VARIOUS PLATFORMS IN VARIOUS MEANS ON YOUR OWN TIME!

I don’t know how and I don’t know why that this is even a topic. “TNA has been dead for years” No it hasn’t. Pay $1 USD for Impact Plus on YouTube so you can watch it without commercials at 8:30 Eastern. “Two hours is too long!” NWA and MLW both go for an hour on their respective YouTube Channels as well and if you want to watch, you can hop in at any time. Everyone has something for everyone and you might find your new favorite wrestler in a matter of minutes into an episode. I would never have known who Eli Drake (now LA Knight on SmackDown Live), Alexander Hammerstone or even in the early stages of TNA Impact, AJ Styles, was! You can watch more than what is broadcasted on your TV. Is it easier? Of course but, there is so much more than just the popular option.


#2- Belt Collecting now is just redundant and moronic

Back in 1996, Ultimo Dragon famously has a picture of him holding TEN championships looking like an amazing superstar with amazing defenses. What people don’t know is, that was because eight championship belts were united in a tournament called “The J-Crown Championship” with the adage of ‘All or Nothing’. He lost them one by one but, it was to show that he was the best Junior Heavyweight (or Cruiserweight/Light Heavyweight) out of everyone in various promotions.

People after that really haven’t belt collected other than unifying championships to a grand caliber… then Austin Aries showed up. Aries kind of revised the gimmick and brought it back to light. Newer fans might have thought this was cool but older fans kind of groaned and grumbled. I was one of them but, nothing is original in anything anymore so it’s a fresher concept at the time back in 2018. He did surpass Ultimo with ELEVEN championships but it seemed everyone started doing it to an extent after. Matt Cardona, after being released from WWE, started doing it, getting up to six championships before dropping them. As of right now, not necessarily solo belt collecting, The Bloodline has a stranglehold of the World Championships for both Singles and Tag Teams, we had Becky Two Belts, Bayley wanted Dos Straps but nothing makes this worse than Kenny Omega’s stint as a belt collector.

I am not and will never be a Kenny Omega fan. I don’t see the appeal, I don’t see the amazement or anything like that out of him. I’m impressed he did three 35+ Minute IWGP Championship matches against Okada because that takes a lot of stamina to do so but, that’s about it. When he won the AEW Championship, alright. That’s fine. Nothing wrong with that since he helped build the company up. The Triple A Megas Championship… nothing too wrong here. I hate that he had five defenses in two years but he vacated it due to his injuries. It wasn’t until Don Callis and Omega popped into Impact and made the Hogan Era of TNA look like a dream… okay ALMOST but still. Kenny defeats Rich Swann and Moose in two different matches and has everyone else carry the belts while holding the AEW Championship. I understand heel tactics and mentality but at one point in an interview about going for the Impact Championship, he compared it to a common Comic Book and the AEW Championship as Superman Issue #1. I understand trying to be a heel in this story but you boost your clout, not rain on what you are going after. Heel or Face, belt collecting has just been a cluster within itself in the past four years and it honestly needs to stop.

#3- Overuse of Certain Moves

This one is a more recent problem that I have seen and no, I wish EC3 paid me to say this but it is true and very annoying to even bring up but here I am, wishing for Carter money and a fifth Rum & Coke…

Stop. Overusing. Moves. Because you think. They were cool.

If I had a shot for every time a Canadian Destroyer, Superkick, Suicide Dive, Avalanche (Insert High Spot here), Dual Dropkick spots where they cancel each other out or opposing members do back to back high spots on the prone partner spot… I would not have written this article due to death… even if it was water, I would have died due to drowning. They don’t look cool anymore when everyone does it. It’s bland. When Petey Williams wrestled in his last return to Impact, the Destroyer looked very… stale. Superkicks are the new DDT apparently (another Finisher turned common everyday move) and most people that do dives mess it up in some way shape or form whether it’s their feet get caught in the ropes, they didn’t get a full launch or they overshoot it. Having your own move special to you is difficult now but different wrestlers do their own styles or the pay homage to a family member or a wrestler that they interact with or ask permission… or asked to stop.

How’d you feel if you watched WCW and WWF in 1997 and saw DDP do the Diamond Cutter and HHH did the Pedigree Pandemonium and say they do the same move? That is exactly what happened too if Dallas didn’t ask Hunter to stop using it. We might not have the RKO out of nowhere or an iconic move that seldom bigger names use today.


That’s my list. I said before if you agree with my list and if you don’t and want to throw hate my way… @PCTunney is the hate mail account so enjoy!


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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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