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Opinion

WOW, is Pro Wrestling Fun or What?

WOW is FUN.

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Santana Garrett WOW

Steve Cook looks past all the complaining and remembers that pro wrestling is fun!

Call me old school, but there’s nothing like watching wrestling on a good ol’ fashioned big screen television set through the power of cable. Sure, I can sit on my laptop all day and watch the wrestling. I typically have WWE Network or Powerslam.tv going on my tablet while I work out. Laptops, tablets & cell phones can’t compete with a big screen.

I finally got a cable upgrade this week, and now I can watch some pro wrestling on Friday nights. No, not Impact, I still don’t get Pursuit. I do get AXS TV now, so I can watch their Friday Night Fights lineup. I’ve been hearing about New Japan’s show for years and now I can finally watch it on a weekly basis, so that’s pretty exciting. However, that isn’t the show I’m most excited about being able to watch now.

WOW

Gorgeous Ladies Of Wrestling was David McLane’s first all-female wrestling promotion, but that was a little before my time. Women Of Wrestling came along in 2000 when I was a teenage wrestling fan and all about attractive women in spandex.

Part of that’s still true…

I know all the criticisms thrown their way. Ridiculous characters. The wrestling wasn’t exactly great. WOW wrestlers were all taught the same moves & everybody pretty much worked the same match. A lot of the wrestling was kinda awkward. I’m pretty sure WOW didn’t have a MOTYC or a match that got five stars from Dave Meltzer.

Maybe they got three stars. I didn’t read his WOW Unleashed review, and I remember some of those matches being all right.

In any event, I watched some WOW on Friday night and liked a lot of what I saw…

-The increase of available female wrestling talent means WOW doesn’t have to train all their wrestlers now. You’ve got experienced women like Santana Garrett, Amber O’Neal, Jessie Jones & others that can work. It also helps that enough time has passed since WOW started operating again that the people they have been training aren’t as green as most of the original WOW talent were.

-The triple threat main event with Garrett, Jungle Grrl & Tessa Blanchard was a nice piece of business. Tessa is getting better every time she goes out there, which is scary for people because she’s already very good. Getting pinned by her two opponents after they both hit their finish on her does nothing to hurt her standing. I would figure on her being the next champion, depending on how long her contract with WOW goes.

-Starting off this run of WOW with Garrett as champion makes perfect sense. She looks & acts like a champion & works her butt off in the ring. I’m not sure how she didn’t get signed by WWE when she came in for the Mae Young Classic, but it works out well for WOW. My belief is that the first champion should be a strong face that serves as a positive influence & good representative of what the company stands for. They’re also somebody that people want to see. Then you eventually switch to the evil person & shake everything up.

-I’ll probably get tired of them, but I liked the vignettes & packages introducing the characters. McLane’s characters are always easy to understand, there aren’t a whole lot of layers there and that makes things easier for viewers.

-It’s a small thing, but I like the color scheme. Most of the wrestlers wear colorful outfits & the ring setup with the purple mat makes everything pop. I like vibrant color in my wrestling, and it especially stands out from New Japan’s presentation during the 8PM hour.

-I’ll always love WE’RE OUTTA TIME finishes to shows. The ruling seemed fairly obvious to me, but that’s only because I’ve watched this stuff for nearly three decades now. Heck, maybe WOW has different rules, I guess we’ll find out.

My main takeaway from the episode was pretty simple…

That was fun.

I enjoyed the hour of entertainment and was looking forward to seeing the next episode. I wasn’t thinking about star ratings or who should get pushed or how many people were there, or anything like that. It was “Hey, that was fun.” Nothing more, nothing less.

Don’t get me wrong, the business side is important. We need these companies to make money if we want to continue watching their programming. The more people watching or attending shows or buying merchandise or whatever, the more likely it is that the promotion will continue. It’s good to know how things are going on that front.

It just strikes me as odd that instead of speculating over what type of product companies will present, and hoping that it ends up being something we like, we typically spend our time wondering whether or not they’ll compete with WWE.

A good 95% of the hype surrounding All Elite Wrestling isn’t concerned with what AEW will look like once they’re producing shows. We’re not talking about who the first champions will be. Nobody’s talking about their thoughts about matchups like PAC vs. Hangman Page, Jericho vs. Omega or Young Bucks vs. Lucha Bros from an fan perspective. We talk about talent signing in relation to what it means business-wise. We’re all talking about what kind of TV deal they’ll get, how many people will attend shows & if they can be financially successful.

We can’t see the forest for the trees. Or some analogy like that.

Impact Wrestling & Ring of Honor have been tossed aside by many. It’d be one thing if it was because fans weren’t entertained, and that’s probably the case for many of them. Impact has certainly had its ups & downs, and it feels like ROH has gotten staler with each passing year from where I sit. I think a lot of people have stopped following these companies because they’ll never be competitive with WWE. In the eyes of these fans, if a company can’t be #1, they aren’t worth watching.

I don’t get that viewpoint. Wrestling is fun. Some shows are better than others, but I’m not going to base my enjoyment of a company on its earnings reports or worldwide deals or YouTube views or any of that business stuff.

OK, maybe the TV deals. WOW is much more enjoyable on my big screen TV than on my laptop.


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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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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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