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The Good, Bad and Ugly: Pre WWE Elimination Chamber 2019

Is WWE Elimination Chamber shaping up to be Good, Bad, or Ugly?

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Bobby gives us the Good, Bad and Ugly of how Elimination Chamber looks on paper!

WrestleMania is obviously the big show coming up but we have a couple of pit stops along the way.  This pit stop is a Good one though.  We have potential for a lot of changes, a lot of memories and a lot of action in a jam packed Pay Per View!  Let’s find out if the layout is looking Good, Bad or Ugly?

GOOD

WWE Title Elimination Chamber Match– Daniel Bryan vs. AJ Styles vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Randy Orton vs. Samoa Joe

Like all Elimination Chambers of the past, we have a lot going on here in this one.  The Chamber itself will lend a hand in this ultra-violent, insane battle for a prestigious Championship.  The participants are also bred for action, as all of them have been in crazy matches almost their whole respective careers.  How do you make it even better than it already could have been?  You add Kofi Kingston after he had a freak of a showing on this week’s SmackDown.  This match is going to be non-stop and deliver even to the most outlandish fan.  I expect nothing but Good, in fact, Great things here, and a hell of an effort.  However it will be Daniel Bryan retaining his New Title!  I also expect to see the return of a certain “creepy, kooky family” and I don’t mean Gomez.  Follow the buzzards because this match is going to kill it!

WWE Women’s Tag Team Elimination Chamber Match– Nia Jax & Tamina vs. Sasha Banks & Bayley vs. Carmella & Naomi vs. The Riott Squad vs. Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville vs. The IIconics

Like the WWE Title Match, this match has the advantage of being in an Elimination Chamber almost guaranteeing success.  It will be entertaining and full of action.  The talent here is 50/50.  Some Good, some Bad, and even some Ugly, however we will see an abundance of Good here as the teams will need to show off, and put the WWE Crew on notice.  These teams have a lot to prove in this historic match.  They will show up and they will beat the hell out of each other until only 1 survives, and it will be Good.  It has to be Good.  The whole world is watching.  Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville Win! 

WWE Raw Women’s Title Match– “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey (C) vs. Ruby Riott

Ruby Riott is dangerously underused but this match is to act sort of as a remedy to that.  Riott and her girls bring a ton of entertainment value and the in ring work isn’t disappointing either.  This is Ruby Riott’s biggest match so far in her career and puts her center stage against one of the most watched athletes of any sport, Ronda Rousey.  With a talent like Ruby Riott, Rousey should be able to keep it together and have a Good, concise match.  Hopefully Riott can control her.  Rousey Retains!

WWE Intercontinental Title Handicap Match– Bobby Lashley (C) w/ Lio Rush vs. Finn Balor

Both guys are rocking out lately.  Finn Balor never loses a step and always delivered.  He simply is one of the best.  Everything he does gets the audience amped up and he constantly outdoes himself putting it all on the line.  Lashley since having Lio Rush has been very impressive.  Not having the pressure of promo’s and being able to just be this freak of nature has suited him well.  Not to mention Lio Rush being actively working and being a huge part of the match will benefit the whole thing.  The Man of the Hour is supremely talented and can move around like no other.  With Lio Rush, Lashley certainly deserves his current run and dominance.  Even with Lio Rush in the ring, Finn Balor will shock the world and win the WWE Intercontinental Championship.

WWE Cruiserweight Title Match– Buddy Murphy (C) vs. Akira Tozawa

Another 205 Live match with two underappreciated, great high flyers.  Buddy Murphy’s unorthodox style is an acquired taste but a Good one.  And athough Tozawa has become a comedic character he can certainly move around the ring artfully.  It will be a solid match but will not leave any more of an impression than 205 Live ever does.  Most just don’t seem to care.  Buddy Murphy Retains!

BAD

WWE Smackdown Tag Team Title Match– The Miz & Shane McMahon (C) vs. The Usos

As Good as the Usos are, and as Good as Shane and Miz are, this match isn’t very exciting.  The buildup, the gimmicks and stories are all really unnecessary.  McMiz is obliviously horrible.  Shane McMahon is an incredible athlete and a genius.  He has had some of the craziest matches and high spots as any legend.  The Miz, one of the best and most underappreciated figures in sports entertainment.  The Usos are straight legends.  So why should we be skeptical?  The chances of botched, awkward spots will be aplenty and the match already is pointless.  There are chances for serious injuries to all and a ton of potential for failure.  McMiz will win but that is the biggest loss of the night. So many other teams could have a shot but McMiz with the belts is an unforgivable waste.   

UGLY

Baron Corbin vs. Braun Strowman

Before this gets Ugly, Baron Corbin has been a lot better as of late.  He has improved immensely both on the mic and in the ring.  He has been working hard and getting a lot of tv time to show for it.  Strowman always is a major presence anytime he is on camera but has been horrible lately.  This could be a very ugly, hard to watch match and we will all hope and pray for a quick squash to give more time to some other more deserving matches. 

FINAL

  • GOOD- 6
  • BAD- 1
  • UGLY- 1

OVERALL

All signs point to Good.  This show looks like it has some big time spots ahead and a lot of potential changes to occur.  No matter the outcomes we can all expect it to be a Good, entertaining pay per view.   Can Elimination Chamber deliver or will it be an Ugly shame?  We will all be watching Sunday Night where all of our questions will be answered.  Enjoy the show!


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Opinion

Steve Cook’s Fave Five: March 2021

Cook gives us his quick snapshot of early storylines that might be the important things through the month of March!

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It’s March! You know what that means.

It’s time for me to channel my inner Booker T and list my Fave Five in the world of wrestling! This list could very well change tomorrow, or whenever this ends up getting posted, but I only type it out once each calendar month. Consider it a snapshot in time.

5. Cameron Grimes

People have been telling me about Grimes for years, going back to his stint with Impact Wrestling. I never really saw it. Decent enough competitor, sure, but he always seemed like Just A Guy to me. Now that he hit it rich on the stock market, he’s the most entertaining part of NXT.

Get rid of Finn Balor & Adam Cole and put the strap on Grimes! TO THE MOON!

4. Shane Taylor

One of my criticisms of ROH television over the past several months has been a lack of defined characters. As fun as Pure Wrestling is, everybody involved in the tournament & the division tend to sound the same. Then, with a lot of the main guys, it’s tough to tell whether they’re good guys, bad guys, or shades of grey. There’s a place for shades of grey, but it’s tough to be interested in a TV show where you don’t know who to root for.

Shane Taylor’s presentation suffered from this for me for awhile. I wasn’t too familiar with his work pre-pandemic, so I’ve been getting to know him along with the rest of the ROH talent. From what I can gather, he was working one of those deals where the promotion didn’t really want to promote him, which can either make one very popular or largely ignored. The promotion tended to treat him like a heel. Either way, Shane looked pretty darn good in his matches, working a physical style that appeals to fans like me. Apparently it appeals to other people as well, since Taylor was the #1 choice of the fans to get a shot at Rush. Taylor was screwed this time around, but now has a story to sink his teeth into. Nothing wrong with that.

3. Tully Blanchard

2021 is quickly becoming the year of the olds. WWE has seen Goldberg & Edge emerge as top championship contenders. Keiji Muto won the GHC Heavyweight Championship. Tommy Dreamer celebrated his birthday by challenging for the Impact Championship. Sting will be taking part in a street fight this weekend.

Age is only a number, and Tully’s number is a little higher than these other men. He also spent more time out of the ring. Nearly fourteen years since he had any kind of match, but he went into Wednesday night with all guns blazing. J.J. Dillion was in the corner. Tully was wearing his classic robe & the silver US Heavyweight Championship, while FTR donned the classic NWA World Tag Team Championships. All the old school feels were being had before the match, and after the match as well, when Arn Anderson looked on from the entrance and flashed that familiar hand signal.

Tully had plenty of talent around him to make the match work, but he hit his spots well. Marko Stunt’s good to have around so he can take a slingshot suplex. JJ got to give his shoe to somebody to use. It ended up being a fitting tribute on the night of Jim Crockett Jr.’s passing, and maybe a sign that Tully’s got a little more left in the tank. (Multi-man would probably be for the best though, I’m not as confident that he can hang with Kenny.)

2. Bobby Lashley

As expected, The Miz joined the likes of Ivan Koloff, Stan Stasiak, the Iron Sheik and other men whose world championship reigns merely existed to get the title from one person to the other without having them face off. In the case of Bobby Lashley, it’s because they didn’t want him to beat Drew McIntyre for the title, so their eventual match will be a first-time (in this particular WWE run) meeting. It makese sense, and Miz played his part well, as you’d expect.

Now is Lashley’s time, and one can wonder why it took so long. The guy looks like what’d you’d expect a WWE Champion to look like. Huge. Powerful. Dominant. He fits the prototype of what Vince McMahon would have seen as an appropriate champion back in the day. Is there anything there that Vince wouldn’t like?

Bob seems to be on a collision course with Drew at WrestleMania, and that should be a pretty solid piece of business.

1. Rey Fenix

I don’t know who the “best in the world” is, but Rey Fenix is the most exciting wrestler currently gracing televisions & other viewing devices. All he does is go out there and deliver every time he’s out there, if you see him listed on a card you know it’s going to be a good match.

AEW seemed a bit slow to capitalize on Fenix’s abilities, but since 2021 began we’ve seen the masked man getting bigger matches. His win-loss record hasn’t been the best, as he’s come up short against Kenny Omega & Lance Archer and eaten the pin in some multi-man matches. He’s still making people take notice, and I’d be surprised if Fenix doesn’t jump up to the next level sometime this year.

My favorite wrestler to watch right now, which is how one tops a list like this one.


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Bodeen’s Top 5 Moments: WWE NXT (3/3/21)

Bodeen breaks out his Top 5 moments of NXT this week. Did he miss anything that made your list?

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After Adam Cole put the nail in the coffin in the Undisputed Era last week, many eyes were on NXT this week to see what the reaction from Roderick Strong would be as well as the Tag title matches after the Dusty Rhodes Classic. With all these factors it’s no surprise that NXT put on another amazing night of action that was entertaining from start to finish. So without further ado, it’s time to look at the top 5 moments from NXT this week.

5. Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler beat Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez

It feels like so long ago we saw Shayna Baszler on NXT. Just a few years ago Baszler was dominating the NXT women’s division as she beats the likes of Kari Sane, Mia Yim, Bianca Belair and Io Shirai. After she lost the title to Rhea Ripley and moved to RAW, over time she lost credibility and she was slowly removed from the title picture. That’s why it was so great to see the submission magician back to her former self on NXT as she and Nia Jax beat Dakota Kai and Requel Gonzalas in a great match that ended in controversial circumstances

This was another great match for the team of Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez, with Raquel Gonzalez once again being the MVP of this match as she took a hot tag from Dakota Kai to dominate Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax. The match would end under controversial circumstances after Adam Pearce called for a referee to ring the bell after Kai was trapped in a submission despite the fact Gonzales was legal.

This finish made Kai and Gonzales look strong in defeat as they did not lose cleanly. It also sets up a storyline in the future, especially after NXT General Manager, William Regal stated he had an announcement to make that would change the NXT landscape.

4. The Way go to therapy 

The Christmas with the Gargano’s vignettes were one of my favorite moments from NXT in 2020. The jokes catered to everyone and ranged from inside jokes to die-hard wrestling fans to silly, cheesy jokes that you would see in a Monty Python or Adam Sandler movie. While the Way going to therapy wasn’t near the level of Christmas with the Gargano’s it was still a fun segment that continued to highlight how good Johnny Gargano is at being a goofy heel.

Gargano’s reactions were priceless to watch as he could not believe that Austin Theory enjoyed his time with Dexter Lumis. Indi Hartwell’s innuendoes were also hilarious to watch, as this series of segments did a great job in giving all members of The Way enough lines so that no member felt pointless being there.

With Dexter Lumis most likely the next in line for Johnny Gargano’s North American Championship, it will be interesting to see the involvement of Austin Theory in what is sure to be a highly entertaining feud to watch.

3. Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch beat Tommaso Ciampa and Timothy Thatcher  

While it was originally meant to be Dusty Rhodes Classic winners, MSK facing Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch we instead got the makeshift team of Tommaso Ciampa and Timothy Thatcher facing the NXT Tag Team champions in a brutal, hard-hitting match that was intense from start to finish, with Lorcan and Burch getting the win after Imperium distracted Thatcher and Ciampa.

This match did a good job at bringing together Thatcher and Ciampa as they smiled at each other, sharing their joy for inflicting pain on their opponents. Despite sharing a moment with each other, the relationship between the two men would be tense as Ciampa seemed annoyed at Thatcher’s history with Imperium costing them the match.

2. Roderick Strong faces off against Finn Balor  

After Adam Cole put the nail in the coffin of the Undisputed Era by superkicking Roderick Strong last week, Strong would open the show this week and would waste no time in calling Adam Cole out to the ring. Despite Strong calling Cole out, Finn Balor would come out, with Roderick blaming Balor for Cole’s actions. Balor would reply by saying that Roderick does not have the killer instinct that Balor has causing Roderick to attack the NXT Champion, leading to a match between the two men later in the night.

This was my favorite match of the night as Roderick Strong, pushed the NXT Champion to his limit, with Balor once again doing an amazing job of selling, as he sold the back which, Strong attacked throughout the match. The match would end after Balor hit the Coup De Grace and 1916 on Strong to win, with Adam Cole coming out to stare off at Balor ahead of their title match next week.

With Finn Balor and Adam Cole ready to face each other in a TakeOver worthy match, it will be interesting to see who will win, in what is sure to be an amazing match.

1. LA Knight makes his intentions known 

While his name change has led to disagreement between fans LA Knight’s short time in NXT has been entertaining to watch. His promo skills and style remind me of a 1980s movie star as he is always the center of attention when he is on the mic. This week would be no different as LA Knight cut his first in-ring promo on NXT TV as he called out the entire roster as well as sewing the seeds for a feud with Bronson Reed.

LA Knight’s promo this week was absolute gold, as he blended cockiness, arrogance, pride and emotion brilliantly, stating that he is not in NXT to do flips and dives, but rather win regardless of style. LA Knight would make his big move against Bronson Reed, as he cost Bronson Reed a match against Cameron Grimes.

Bronson Reed is a great first feud for LA Knight, as it can perfectly show off LA Knight’s style well against a bigger man like Bronson Reed.

These were my top 5 moments from NXT this week. What were your top 5 moments and who do you think will win the NXT Championship Title match next week? Let us know in the comments below.

 

 


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