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The Good, Bad and Ugly SmackDown Live (2/19/19)

Bobby gives us the Good, Bad and Ugly of SmackDown following Elimination Chamber!

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Good Bad Ugly WWE Smackdown

Bobby gives us the Good, Bad and Ugly of SmackDown following Elimination Chamber!

Raw was okay.  That’s it.  NXT did their usual stellar job but the show had some major flaws.  It’s nothing major and overall Raw was Good and more than got the job done.  The whole roster both NXT and WWE Raw and SmackDown have been going full steam and ready for this WrestleMania which speaking personally feels very special this year for some reason. 

GOOD

Shane McMahon

Here comes the money!  Shane took to business hyping the NXT call ups, when Miz interrupted and apologized to his partner.  Shane O Mac and Miz can work the hell out of a crowd and bring a ton of emotions every single time!  Sometimes things get crazy and not everything clicks especially when high risk is involved which messes these guys up every single match.  They still continue to show up every show and put in work.  We haven’t seen their best stuff yet.  The Usos when they get loose out go wild and leave it all out there.  All legit vets that can work and will be present in the some fashion at WrestleMania.  It went a little bit slow and long but it was from the heart which WWE fans respect.  Uso’s joined and taunted McMiz to a rematch in a mocking fashion.  Fastlane Rematch for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships.  Good by a heartbeat, the match Fastlane hopefully will be better than the last one.    

Andrade w/ Zelina Vega vs. Aleister Black

SD Live whipped out the big guns in this one!  Holy talent!  No need to build up this match, it is Good the way it is.  As usual we had talent showcasing kicks, strikes and high risk.  That is these guys comfort zone and it shows.  The NXT crew has only made things better as they always do.  Being used in the NXT personas has been a great way to keep them prominent and seemingly safe from being buried on the main roster.  Andrade was a huge NXT Star himself at one time and him and Black are a perfect blend.  Zelina Vega is a pleasant addition to Andrade every match as well and always finds a way to get involved effectively.  However before she could get involved in this one, Aleister Black hits “Black Mass” for the win.  Solid, clean match with two very talented Superstars. 

“DIY” Ciampa and Gargano (NXT and NXT NA Champions) vs. The Bar Shamus and Cesaro

The promo of Cesaro talking trash and The Bar laughing and belittling DIY was entertaining and very effective.  Good little hype promo.  This is a solid contrast of teams.  All four are extremely intense and physical.  DIY has all the speed and the little bit of crazy that helps when you need it.  The Bar is all precision, pain and power.  Really stiff match here, a lot of punishment on both sides.  It was fantastic though as NXT Talent continues to show up ready to rock out!  The Bar had this match on ice but out Ciampa got the blind tag and an over the top “roll up” on the “Swiss Superman” for the upset victory.  Awesome Match!

Non-Title Match- (SmackDown Women’s Champion) Asuka vs. Mandy Rose

Mandy Rose wanted to fulfill Asuka’s Challenge.  Mandy Rose with her sidekick Sonya Deville came down and Mandy Rose faced the Champ.  Out of the blue, Lacey Evans came out distracting everyone.  Sonya Deville stood in her way and turned her around.  Mandy Rose looked great in there and working with someone as Good as Asuka is a big thing for her.  Asuka is amazing and is a strong person to have that title.  Mandy Rose hit a vicious knee on the outside and later played an eye injury getting a cheap roll up for the win and pinned the SmackDown Women’s Champion in this non-title match.    

Ricochet vs. Eric Young w/ Sanity)

Another very effective mix of talent here.  Eric Young who isn’t seen enough being as Good as he is, facing the best of the best, Ricochet.  This is a potential blockbuster.  Honestly though considering who was working here, this was a pretty slow match at times.  Looked sharp though but not the usual speed of these two.  Finally after Eric Young had controlled the whole match, Ricochet started moving.  Eric Young got busted open and Ricochet continued his assault.  Ricochet took down the whole Sanity crew flying through the air.  Ricochet maintained and hit his “630” Splash for the win!  Okay match, and with Ricochet, far from being a Bad one.    

Kofi Kingston, AJ Styles and Jeff Hardy vs. Daniel Bryan (C), Randy Orton and Samoa Joe

Bryan, Orton and Joe, make Sanity look like a Boy Scout troop.  The heels isolated Jeff Hardy and took turns beating him down.  Rapid tags and effective offense kept them in control until Kofi Kingston got the tag and came in hot.  All hell broke loose, Kofi got slammed onto an announce table, with fighting all around.  Once things got back in the ring, AJ Styles got the tag from a beaten Kofi and AJ killed it but took some punishment as well.  Kofi came in again and shined!  Kofi went on to hit a “trouble in paradise” and pin the Champ, Daniel Bryan for the impressive victory. 

Shane O’ Mac then announced that Kofi Kingston will be getting a title shot at Fastlane against Daniel Bryan.  Well-deserved and well done!

BAD and UGLY- No and No.

FINAL

Good- 6

Bad- 0

Ugly- 0

Overall

Nothing is perfect but SmackDown was Good.  There were a few blah spots and times where it could have been better overall, but it was a solid show.  It was entertaining and continued the party on the Road to WrestleMania. 

NXT is the next one on the agenda and never soon enough.  But we seemingly have had NXT action all week so far which has been a huge success.  The audience wins all around with the addition of NXT talent to Raw and SmackDown.  What will that mean for NXT now though?  Well I would say it will only make everyone else there even hungrier to shine.  Looking forward to seeing what’s next!  Read the next Good, Bad and Ugly! 


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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SANADA, From Breakout Performance To Breakout Year ?

Valentin brings us some thoughts of the up and coming SANADA. If you haven’t watched the match between Minoru Suzuki and SANADA, go back and do that.

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SANADA applying Skull End on Minoru Suzuki

Valentin brings us some thoughts of the up and coming SANADA. If you haven’t watched the match between Minoru Suzuki and SANADA, go back and do that.

You know, tournaments are always full of surprises. From upsets you never saw coming, to matches you never thought would be as good as they are. Sometimes, as the matches happen, you see some things develop which you were not expecting.

Today, I will take a look at one of these things, as March 17th saw SANADA had one of his best, and possibly most important matches in his New Japan career.

This year’s New Japan Cup has been filled with interesting turn of events and some participants, already eliminated or not, can be considered breakout stars of this tournament so far. One of them is Los Ingobernables de Japon member SANADA, who has now defeated both Hirooki Goto and Minoru Suzuki, to advance in the tournament. The first thing to note is that out of the three L.I.J members originally participating, SANADA is the only one left, and even considering who eliminated Naito and EVIL in the first round, this is quite impressive.

The biggest feat so far for SANADA, of course is his performance against Suzuki. Not only did he win, but as you possibly know, not all wins weight the same, and we are talking about a big win here. After losing to Suzuki in Sapporo, this match was SANADA’s chance to redeem himself. The match itself being built to focus on SANADA’s ability to out wrestle his opponent and endure some unbearable amount of pain. Suzuki being a master at inflicting pain, you knew this was the perfect match-up to build SANADA up. From some of the usual vicious attacks to Suzuki to an intense battle of submissions full of reversals, SANADA landed Keiji Mutoh’s trademark moonsault for the win, as he received possibly the biggest crowd support he has ever gotten, even by Koruaken Hall standards. Speaking of crowd reaction, rewatch the submission sequences and listen to the crowd chanting for SANADA. Only the top performers in New Japan will get this type of response, and, as well as winning the match and in which fashion, this is the last ingredient for a star making performance.

Of course, having such a performance under your belt isn’t enough. With New Japan’s landscape being filled with opportunities for guys to shine, things cannot just stop there. As SANADA will have to face Colt Cabana, and possibly the winner of Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Zack Sabre Jr in the semifinals, what can we expect from the Cold Skull now ?

Outside of eventually finishing as New Japan Cup’s breakout star alongside Will Ospreay, SANADA can be in for a big year, as a singles wrestler. Let’s take a quick look at L.I.J.

So far, only Tetsuya Naito has had true singles success as a heavyweight, and both EVIL and SANADA have yet to really get a grasp of it, outside of good performances in previous G1 Climax tournaments, and a quick NEVER Openweight championship run for EVIL. There is a spot to fill as the second top heavyweight behind Naito, and while Shingo Takagi adds even more complexity to the mix, as of now, why can’t SANADA reach that level ? He certainly keeps proving he has the ability, so all is needed now for him to reach it, is to keep scoring big wins. Making it to the New Japan Cup semifinals would be a big deal, but after the Suzuki match, capping things off by going to the tournament’s finals would be a huge step. Even bigger if SANADA eliminates last year’s winner in ZSJ, which he is currently tied with in singles matches. However, defeating Tanahashi would be as big of an accomplishment.

The last subject to tackle is what is next after the New Japan Cup. Ultimately, who knows, but with SANADA looking like he will be one of the wrestlers to come out of the tournament very strong, expect more singles matches outside of the G1, and possibly a championship match before that. Speaking of the G1 and championship matches, do not be shocked if SANADA ends up being a trump card in the tournament, and maybe even more. SANADA has always scored 8 points in his three participations, and while EVIL has been the one to stand out the most in the tournament the last few years, SANADA has been consistent and has managed to grab big wins, like against Tanahashi in 2016, or Ibushi and Sabre last year. With the possibility of seeing SANADA on the rise, do not be surprised if he ends up pinning one of the champions in the same block as him, and expect him to reach at least 10 points for the first time, meaning he would rank quite high in the block he is in. He could even finish the year with his first singles championship win.

Whatever happens, let me say that 2019 might be SANADA’s breakout year in New Japan, and you should look forward to it.

In times where New Japan needs to build up more wrestlers as threats for the diverse championships, SANADA seems to benefit the most from this year’s New Japan Cup, as an opportunity to climb up the ranks. Now tell me, what are your expectations concerning the man we will ultimately have to stop referring as Keiji Mutoh’s student ?


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Carol: Why Brock Lesnar Will Win At WWE Wrestlemania

What if Brock wins?

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WWE WrestleMania Brock Lesnar Seth Rollins

Will Seth Rollins slay the beast at WWE WrestleMania, or will Brock Lesnar walk out the reigning, defending, undisputed WWE Universal Champion? Carol thinks the latter.

WrestleMania is less than three weeks away and while everyone’s attention is on Becky Lynch vs Ronda Rousey vs Charlotte Flair, there’s one title match that has slipped everyone’s mind. The Universal Championship match between Seth Rollins and Brock Lesnar is a high-profile fight that hasn’t received that much attention. The reason is due to Lesnar’s part-time schedule. Since the Royal Rumble, Lesnar has only appeared on RAW twice and that was to attack Rollins.

Rollins has done everything he can to get fans invested in the feud. He’s delivered heartfelt promos while also doing verbal spats with Paul Heyman about why Lesnar doesn’t deserve the championship. Heading into WrestleMania, Rollins is heavily favored to win and end Lesnar’s reign as champion. Fans have become frustrated with Lesnar being a part-time champion and will be cheering when he loses. However, WWE fans shouldn’t start celebrating just yet.

History Repeats Itself?

WWE is well-known to do stupid stuff and come WrestleMania, I have a feeling they’ll have Brock retain. There are a couple of reasons behind my theory. The first one has to do with the uncertainty of Brock’s future with WWE. Every year around this time, there’s reports questioning Brock’s career plans. Just as fans get excited about the prospect of Brock leaving for UFC, he inks a new deal to stay with WWE. This year, I don’t see things changing when it comes to Lesnar’s status with the company. Brock is one of Vince’s top guys and with new competition popping up; Mr. McMahon is going to do everything to keep his wrestlers from leaving. Brock’s incentives could include more money and a longer reign as Universal Champion.

Health Issues For Rollins

The other reason for Lesnar going over at WrestleMania is Seth’s health. Rollins has been having issues with his back, which has kept him off of house shows. Recently, he wrestled on RAW and showed that he was still in top form heading into WrestleMania. However, Seth’s back issues could be a concern for WWE officials, and that may very well play into their plan of whether Rollins wins the Universal Championship.

The Big Dog Is Back

The last reason to be concerned about the match has to do with the return of Seth’s Shield brother Roman Reigns. Prior to announcing his battle with leukemia, Reigns was the Universal Champion and was feuding with Brock. With Reigns now healthy and has returned to wrestling, Vince may decide to resume the Roman vs Brock feud, with Reigns conquering the beast and reclaiming the championship. If any of these scenarios were to happen, it would be unfair to Seth.

Rollins has had a phenomenal year and there’d be no better way to cap it off by having him win the Universal Championship at WrestleMania. But given how notorious WWE is for swerving fans, it wouldn’t be surprising if we had another outcome like last year’s WrestleMania. My advice to WWE fans is to prepare for the worst when it comes to WrestleMania, because odds are that Brock Lesnar’s reign as Universal Champion will continue.


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