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Andrew’s WWE Raw and SmackDown Live Ratings & Analysis (4/22 + 4/23/2019)

More changes after the Shakeup! It’s like we get an extended draft before the NFL Draft! How did WWE’s main roster shows pan out?

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More changes after the Shakeup! It’s like we get an extended draft before the NFL Draft! How did WWE’s main roster shows pan out?

Shortly before Raw went live, there were reports of some Superstars being moved again even though the Shakeup was last week. We also heard some rumblings that our favorite Experience was getting a different name.

So were we happy with the shows? Were they just a mess? Let’s find out!

 

Raw Ratings:

  • Samoa Joe vs Rey Mysterio vs AJ Styles: Styles wins via Styles Clash – *** ¼
  • Billie Kay vs Naomi: Naomi wins via Roll-Up – N/A
  • The Miz vs Baron Corbin vs Drew McIntyre: Corbin wins via Claymore – *** ½
  • Cesaro vs Cedric Alexander: Cesaro wins via Swiss Death Uppercut – ***
  • Alicia Fox vs Becky Lynch: Lynch wins via DisArm-Her – * ½
  • Ricochet vs Robert Roode: Roode wins via Glorious DDT – ** ½
  • AJ Styles vs Baron Corbin: Styles wins via Phenomenal Forearm – *** ¼

 

Analysis:

So this opening segment was generally worthless. Triple H was added to the proceedings purely because…well…he can be? Seth is a travesty on the microphone and the others march out like we weren’t just told there was going to be 2 Triple Threats. So it was just messy. Unless this is the first hint towards Seth rejoining with Hunter, this dynamic was almost as worthless as the word salad they threw at ass.

Our first Triple Threat is the work rate match. There’s really no story here aside from both Rey and AJ have had issues with Samoa Joe, but it wasn’t conveyed in the match well. Joe’s Avalanche Double Mountain Bomb was a spot, but really just took too long to set up and looked too cooperative. This match is fine, but I doubt it stopped anyone who still flips through channels at 8:30 est looking for something to watch.

Now I love the IIconics, and I know the corny/cringe worthy promos are part of their gimmick…but can we stop? The crowd didn’t react to anything and came off forced and trying waaaay too hard, like Mauro Ranallo’s pop culture references. Billie got made a fool of in this match, and then the promo the IIconics had in the back was much better than their walking down the ramp crap. Do more of the backstage dynamic and less of the really bad comedy.

Most people might right off this second Triple Threat, but hey, this was the better pro wrestling match. We saw an easy to follow storyline for people who have watched somewhat recently, we saw progression when Baron took cheap shots on McIntyre and Miz was a wonderful babyface in peril. I really enjoyed everything about this, including Corbin taking advantage of McIntyre laying out Miz with the Claymore, dumping Drew to the outside and stealing the pinfall. Great story telling.

Sami Sami Sami. I have to admit, I like this concept of running down the IWC and it seems like he genuinely enjoys cutting the promos, or his a great actor. I’m still not 100% on board with this, since it can fall apart at any moment given WWE’s track record. But for now, it’s fun, it’s smarmy and I like it.

Ahh now here we get a paradox. Both Cesaro and Cedric are making their official post Shakeup returns/debuts, so someone has to lose. This was a nice match in the regard that it proved Cedric can go toe to toe with someone the pedigree of Cesaro. Cedric will need time adjusting to the size difference since he was one of the bigger Cruiserweights, now he’s a little below average. As long as this is an actual building block and not just a throw away match, this could go somewhere for Cedric. OH! Cesaro picked up the win! Weird…right?

Usos backstage, Jey takes a small jab at Jimmy and then start going through the tag team roster. The Revival show up to try and check the Uce Troop, but the brothers pretend to fall asleep and just clown The Revival. It was good stuff and that should be a great match whenever it happens.

Oh God no! Lucha House Party against the Viking Exp…wait…Viking Raiders? So will Asuka and Kairi be known as the Steeler Buccaneers? Anyway, we all know my rule, if the Lucha House Party are on I drop the show score a half point. Oh-WAIT! The Vikings destroy all three, the match doesn’t begin and they just beat the hell out of the Mexican Masked Geeks? I retract my statement about dropping a half point. Hell this might raise it. Though I’m not a fan of Thor’s Hammer being renamed The Viking Experience, but I guess Vince just wanted it in there somewhere.

Lacey is wonderful. I love the character, I love her look…just…ahh. Okay that’s bad English, especially when written out, but did you expect me to talk about the match? At this point I’m not sure if Alicia is a bad wrestler or if she’s just told to go be a spazz on purpose. However Lacey getting in two Woman’s Rights, was nice. Again…Lacey Evans.

Ricochet fights his dad! Erm, I mean Robert Roode. I really do like him going back to the full name. It sounds more like an adult since, what 40 year old man is known as Bobby?  The match was okay, but honestly you have a theme song with a porn stache facing a superball with no personality. So…don’t expect anyone to care, but Robert gets a win!

It’s been a pretty okay show so far, but since Corbin closes out the show, it’s gonna end with a wet fart right?

WAIT- FIREFLY FUN HOUSE?

*blinks*

This is…pure genius! I loved every second of this demented dark comedic children’s show. I want Bo Dallas to show up as a Mailman or Curtis Axel as a Cowboy (Cowboy Curtis reference). I literally can’t stop snickering from how random, but beautiful this vignette was. Just…I think a tear is coming to my eye.

MORE STORYTELLING IN THE RING!! YAY! Styles tweaked something in his Triple Threat and it effects how he throws his offense. Corbin tries to take every advantage possible, but Styles’ resolve is proving troublesome. Styles tries for a Styles Clash, but can’t do it, Corbin looks like he’s going to win, but AJ Styles is Phenomenal after all. Fights through everything and hits the Forearm for the surprise pinfall. I say surprise mainly because it’s a pretty big angle, fairly quick. But with MITB and then Saudi Arabia, Styles could always be slated for both of them. That carries immensely more star power than anything involving Corbin.

 

Overall Score: 8/10

Great show! Extra points for Lucha House Party destruction, Firefly Fun House being fantastic, not knowing if Alicia Fox does that on purpose and…Corbin, being involved in the best story matches of the night.

The show started off questionably, but yeah I can’t be mad. I was entertained for most of the show and even the down points were partially expected, so it didn’t leave the lingering taste of disappointment in my mouth. It’s gonna be hard for SmackDown to top Raw!

What did I just say? I blame Bray.

 

SmackDown Live Ratings:

  • Andrade vs Finn Balor: Balor wins via Coup de Grace – *** ¼
  • Kairi Sane vs Peyton Royce: Kairi wins via Insane Elbow – N/A
  • Charlotte Flair vs Bayley: Flair wins via Spear – ** ½
  • Kofi Kingston vs Shinsuke Nakamura: Kofi wins via DQ – ** ¾

 

Analysis:

Shane opens up the show to address Reigns and the actions against Vince last week. He takes the obviously hypocritical stance of “who puts hands on someone’s father”, and it gets a decent reaction of boos from the crowd. Roman comes out to a good pop, confronts Shane, doesn’t speak and just throws the mic down. THIS is the Roman most people love. No talking, just ass beatings.

To Shane’s credit, he squares up, but Elias blind sides Roman and the two on one begins. Elias coming out of two weeks where he was in the same segments with John Cena and The Undertaker, now he’s chosen by Vince and positioned with Roman and Shane…this is all great for Elias. I don’t exactly know where the whole thing plays out to, but starting with a Money in the Bank match, Elias could have a bit of a rocket.

Big O, Xavier and Kofi in the back, have an entertaining mini-interview. This is a very fun grouping.

So WWE validates Andrade and Zelina coming back to SmackDown Live with the fact that Finn ran after he lost to Andrade. So Andrade wasn’t going to let him off the hook. I don’t hate it, it makes enough sense. And much like last week, the match is good, but the problem is they already had Zelina cost Andrade this match. I’m not sure why they would do that unless they’re moving towards breaking them up soon. Andrade is talking more, but he still very definitely needs a manager. Maybe they will position the couples together, that could be the direction. But Zelina and Andrade are so good as a duo, I’d like to see them accomplish something on main roster before splitting apart.

So Paige’s ex-stablemates are jealous of her new friends. So even though Kairi got a very one sided win over Peyton, we may be seeing Fire & Desire face the Pirates of Tomorrow. Could be a fun first feud for Asuka and Kairi to work on some team synergy. Plus Fire & Desire have issues with Asuka as well as Paige, so it all makes enough sense.

Aleister Black saying nothing. But he said it ominously. The last person to speak hollow words now has a Fun House. Just…be mindful.

Jinder Mahal is moved to SmackDown! Chad Gable comes down for a match, but Lar Sullivan wipes him out, goes after Jinder, but plays Fling the Singh instead! Surprisingly, R-Truth’s music hits and he tries to stand up to Lars, but Lars eats him for lunch. I still don’t care, but they’re trying.

Charlotte starts complaining even though she knew the rules to the previous Winner Take All match. Becky says she wants new challengers and puts over a few women in the back. Bayley comes out to much better reception than last week. She thanks Becky for noticing her, and then when Charlotte tries to dismiss her, Bayley snaps back and shows some attitude.

This match was like a lot of Charlotte’s matches, sloppy at different points. Also, Bayley needs to stop the attempted sliding kick through the bottom turnbuckle. It looks awful. Leave those moves to Sami Zayn.  Charlotte misses a Moonsault and falls on Bayley, and it’s just weird. I get they haven’t locked up in a while, but there were numerous moments this was a little rough. Sadly, Charlotte wins even though no one wants it. But it could be for the same reason that AJ won on Raw. Saudi Arabia could be driving a few stop gap angles before we get back to normal PPV pacing.

FIREFLY FUN HOUSE!

Dammit, it’s a rerun. Still made me snicker, and I like the fact they’re capitalizing on the viral aspect by showing anyone who may just watch SmackDown or somehow missed it Monday and on the entire internet.

Kofi and Nakamura, I wait with baited breath that we see a small glimmer of 2015 Nakamura and not the last couple years. Honestly, Shinsuke did seem a little more like his old self. Stiff kicks, animated head games, big brothering Kofi with some antagonistic kicks, all classic Shinsuke. Rusev interferes for the DQ, but that’s not the catch!

Kevin and Xavier were on the pancake desk doing alternate commentary, and they were actually pretty good together. But after only 1 week Big O turned into the Big Uh-Oh. Owens turns on Kofi, beats him down a beat and lays his claim to the being the next contender.

We all knew babyface Kevin Owens had a short shelf life. Right?

 

Overall Score: 7.5/10

Really good show! Very consistent show. Nothing was painfully offensive, but there were no really big highs like on Raw. Plus the fact that Firefly Fun House was a rerun, I have to rank this lower than Raw just because we literally saw a segment yesterday.

Main roster shows pulled off some good stuff. Yes, since we’re all jaded and cynical, I’m fully aware this could all tail spin and explode in no time flat. But for now, I’m taking what’s presented at face value, and it’s all solid entertainment and pretty decent in-ring work too boot.

Good job WWE!


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Andrew’s Impact Wrestling Ratings & Analysis 7/19/2019

Impact Mash Up Tournament tonight! Winning team earns a 1v1 match with a title shot attached! WCW Lethal Lottery is back!

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Impact Mash Up Tournament tonight! Winning team earns a 1v1 match with a title shot attached! WCW Lethal Lottery is back!

WCW Lethal Lottery show!

Wait – I mean Mash Up Tournament…no wait, I was right the first time. I wonder if there’s a Battlebowl at the end.

From a clip show to a filler show, I’m not really sure how to feel. Tonight could be cool, but I doubt it will matter much in the grand scheme of things.

Damn you Impact and Dragonball for your non-canonical movies!

Ratings:

  • Moose & Eddie Edwards vs Rohit Raju & Cody Deaner: Edwards wins via Boston Knee Party – * 1/2
  • Rich Swann & Madman Fulton vs Jake Crist & Wentz: Jake wins via Fisherman Buster Hold – ** 1/4
  • Michael Elgin & Willie Mack vs Ace Austin & Stone Rockwell: Elgin wins via Elgin Bomb – **
  • Trey & Dave Crist vs Sami Callihan & Tessa Blanchard: Callihan wins via Piledriver – ***
  • Havok vs Madison Rayne vs Taya Valkyrie: Havok wins via Tombstone Piledriver – ** 1/2
  • Mash-Up Finals Elimination Match: Eddie Edwards & Moose vs Willie Mack & Michael Elgin vs Jake Crist & Wentz vs Sami Callihan & Tessa Blanchard: Tessa & Sami win – *** 1/4

 

Analysis:

So the inaugural match of this Mash Up Tournament and it’s decently established wrestlers against two jobber halves of a tag teams. This had no chance of being taken seriously. Things break down, Moose and Eddie win, Desi Hit Squad and Deaner brawl a little. This really got the night kicked off with a yawn and fart.

Zombie Princess is interviewing Ace Austin and Eddie Prince, Austin insults his mish mosh teammate and now he’s hung out to dry. Will he find a replacement?

Well this was a little odd since it was 3 Cruiserweight sized people and Madman Fulton. We got some decent Cruiser style wrestling until the inevitable turn from Fulton happened and he assisted Jake in beating Rich. So maybe Jake will be in line for an X Division shot.

Is it hard for me to care about some of this? That’s a resounding yes. Austin gets saddled with the comedy act of Stone Rockwell and we hate all of these things. Of course Elgin and Mack mostly dominate, this wasn’t close, Ace is a jerk, yadda yadda…Lethal Lottery nap time!

Well we finally had a somewhat competitive match. Dave and Sami planned a finger poke of Doom spot since we don’t already have enough WCW references tonight. Trey also decided to dress up exactly like Sami and channels his inner Sami. Tessa and Sami start dysfunctional but they put it together enough. Tessa hits Magnum on Trey but tweaks something so Sami picks up the pinfall with the Piledriver. Solid match with a lot of drama and character spots.

ImpactPlus Flashback Momenet: oVe vs Eddie Edwards, Moose & Tommy Dreamer House of Hardcore Match Redemption 4/22/2018

Well the writing was on the wall with this match too. Havok is twice the size of the other women and Taya is a self preserving champion, so we had to figure that Madison was eating the pin here. The match wasn’t awful or anything, but a lack of suspension of disbelief just kinda has it linger and happen.

So the Mash Up Tournament was kinda like Battlebowl. The four winners, come together in a giant four way tag, and the winner of this four way gets a one on one match at Unbreakable for a World Title shot.

We got the finish that most of us probably wanted, and everyone actually looked solid. Moose and Eddie going out first is fine since they were the least cohesive unit. Elgin and Mack only lost because Elgin eventually turned on Mack and just walked out on the match. The we saw Jake Crist defy Sami’s wishes. Sami tried the finger poke, but Jake was playing possum and went for an Inside Cradle, but Sami kicked out. An interesting development was when Tessa faced off with Elgin, Sami shoved her out of the way, like he was protecting her. Then towards the end, her and Sami were in sync trading strikes with Jake and Wentz. So there is tension between the two, but they also came together when it mattered, regardless of the dysfunction. That was a neat wrinkle.

Overall Score: 6.5/10

The show was alright for being mostly filler. But the real highlight of the night was on Twitch, watch Melissa play Fortnite with Sami Callihan and Dave Crist. Between the comments, Melissa being awful at the game and just the general banter, it was all good stuff. Sami’s shoe fetish is a little odd though.

Either way, the show was fine, Twitch made it better when the first hour was pretty obvious and boring. Tessa, Sami and Jake are probably the biggest players to look out for coming out of this Lethal Lottery.


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Andrew’s G1 Climax 29 Ratings & Analysis: Night 6 B Block

Juice Robinson, Tomohiro Ishii and Jon Moxley come in at the top of the standings. How do we see B Block take shape?

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Juice Robinson, Tomohiro Ishii and Jon Moxley come in at the top of the standings. How do we see B Block take shape?

This whole day is based around two major things:

Will Jay White or Tetsuya Naito get a win?

Will Moxley or Ishii kill one another?

Let’s find out!

Ratings:

  • Bad Luck Fale & Chase Owens vs Zack Sabre Jr & Yoshinobu Kanemaru: Fale wins via Grenade @4:50 – **
  • Tomoaki Honma & Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Minoru Suzuki & Lance Archer: Archer wins via EBD Claw Hold @9:50 – **
  • SANADA, EVIL & BUSHI vs KENTA, Kota Ibushi & Clark Connors: BUSHI wins via MX @9:02 – ** 1/2
  • YOSHI-HASHI & Kazuchika Okada vs Will Ospreay & Toa Henare: YOSHI wins via Fisherman Buster @8:45 – ** 1/4
  • B Block: Shingo Takagi vs Taichi: Takagi wins via Last of the Dragon @14:40 – ****
  • B Block: Jeff Cobb vs Juice Robinson: Cobb wins via Tour of the Islands @13:20 – *** 1/2
  • B Block: Toru Yano vs Jay White: Yano wins via Brass Knuckle Low Blow/Roll-Up @3:05 – ** 1/2
  • B Block: Tetsuya Naito vs Hirooki Goto: Naito wins via Destino @16:00 – *** 3/4
  • B Block: Jon Moxley vs Tomohiro Ishii: Moxley wins via Deathrider @20:35 – **** 1/2

 

Analysis:

Well Fale tried to outsmart the Rainmaker in his last G1 match, and that didn’t go too well. So Sabre is being a whiny child, tried to step to Fale and for the most part, got brushed off. Fale isn’t really in a position to eat another loss, but it’s unusual for Sabre to be doing so poorly. I’m curious if Sabre continues this slide until maybe TAKA Michinoku returns to be his hype man, or Sabre gets off the schneid.

People, everybody dies. You know that, Lance knows that, Honma knows that…Kairi Sane knows that. This didn’t really add much to things except the undercurrent of a quiet Minoru Suzuki is scary for the whole world. Also – Everybody Dies!

Now that SANADA and EVIL have had their match, there is some symbiosis back on the LIJ undercards. KENTA and Kota teaming together was a cute call back, but nothing of heavy merit came from this match. BUSHI continues to rack up positive momentum during these tags, Clark Connors is impressive for an LA Dojo Young Lion. So decent match, but aside from EVIL and KENTA brawling after the match and SANADA and Ibushi having a rather civil fan support battle, nothing too important for the impending matches.

Okada and Ospreay did have the crowd hot, but aside from a small flourish, this was mostly YOSHI and Henare. Surprisingly, YOSHI-HASHI has put together a few pinfalls in the tag matches, so that tends to actually play a role in the second half story telling. Ospreay may be on his way to a big upset since even if Okada seems to be positioned to win A Block, he won’t make it through unscathed.

Now this was a fun match. It was a continuation of the Suzuki-Gun/LIJ drama, but Taichi has his own issues. Shingo is fighting as a Junior Heavyweight and Taichi moved up to Heavyweight last year, but was overlooked for the G1. So the fact that Shingo asks and gets in, yet Taichi moves up and was ignored has to bother him. With all of these little things eating through, Taichi brought out the Dangerous T that many of us have grown to love. Sure there was a brief moment of shenanigans with lovely Miho and the microphone stand, but 90% of the match was on the up and up. Pumping Bomber versus Axe Bomber was great, the callbacks to both of their mentors was wonderful and just generally speaking, when the Holy Emperor tries, those are great matches. Shingo getting the win won’t sit well with Taichi, but we’ve got plenty more time to see how this all falls.

Juice starts off the match in a 3 way tie for first, but Cobb really needs a win to legitimize his tournament. Being undefeated in ROH for about a year, as well as all his other accolades, he needs to stop losing. Cobb showed a little more fire than usual in this match and took it to Juice. Juice has been in hard hitting affairs all tournament and it looks like Juice might’ve finally hit the wall. Should be interesting to see if Juice flounders from here or if he recovers.

Well the Chaos revenge tour has another stop with Toru Yano and Jay White. Jay has not gotten off to a good start and it’s all his past decisions coming to bite him. This match…would be no different. Yano takes advantage of Gedo getting involved. Between Barbara Jean the turnbuckle pad and the brass knuckles from Gedo, Jay White’s nuts didn’t stand a chance. So Yano runs away with 2 more points and Jay’s pride…and other things…are a bit sore.

Goto started off the tournament looking like a new man, Naito has also looked different, but for different reasons. Naito sitting in the basement with zero points and Goto with the renewed sense of purpose makes for an odd dynamic. This match is one of their usual ones, where it’s quick bursts, hard hitting and a few solid false finishes. However, at multiple points Naito’s usual tranquilo is shaken and you can see him show levels of concern. Goto being the one with the power in the match, makes for some unique interactions. Naito does pull off the win, but it’s not for Goto’s lack of trying and kicking out of one running Destino. Naito finally gets some points, but it’s nothing near dominant enough to breathe a sigh of relief.

Moxley versus Ishii was the insane hard hitting match we expected. Ishii even flew. He hit a splash on Moxley through a table. The Stone Pitbull flew. Yes I realize there is a callback to Masato Tanaka in that move, but you don’t understand, Ishii flew. Anyway, the beauty of Red Shoes as a referee is he understands each wrestlers personality, so he gives them a little more leash to do what they like to do. Moxley used weapons, Ishii egged it on, there were huge strikes, Ishii’s torpedo style rising headbutts and just good violence. This was a bar fight and no one was upset. Moxley getting the win was a little surprising since most of us assume he won’t be available for many if any later dates once AEW TV starts up. This was just a nice change of pace for the usual New Japan and/or Strong Style match.

 

Overall Score: 7.75/10

With a great Taichi match and Moxley changing the pace, this show was definitely something to behold. Jay White’s continued spiral is more amusing than Sabre’s since this seems like retribution where Sabre is just a punk bitch when he loses. Even with an uneventful undercard, the main Block matches kept everything moving upward and onward.

With Moxley as the sole 3-0, who unseats the Death Rider?

 

B Block Standings:

  • Jon Moxley – 3-0 (6 Points)
  • Toru Yano – 2-1 (4 Points)
  • Tomohiro Ishii – 2-1 (4 Points)
  • Juice Robinson – 2-1 (4 Points)
  • Shingo Takagi – 2-1 (4 Points)
  • Jeff Cobb – 1-2 (2 Points)
  • Tetsuya Naito – 1-2 (2 Points)
  • Hirooki Goto – 1-2 (2 Points)
  • Taichi – 1-2 (2 Points)
  • Jay White – 0-3 (0 Points)


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