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The Chairshot’s Weekly Brainbuster: Matt’s Power Rankings 11/22/19

Welcome to the seventh edition of The Chairshot’s Brainbuster Power Rankings!

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Welcome to the seventh edition of The Chairshot’s Brainbuster Power Rankings!

This week, I bring to you a Special Edition Tag Team version as we are headed for WarGames and Survivor Series, as well as the NJPW World Tag League! We are discussing the week of 11/15-11/21! We will be comparing WWE (RAW and SDL), NXT (NXTUS, 205 Live, and NXT UK), AEW (Dynamite and DARK), and NJPW! Who had the biggest week?

These rankings are very much based on momentum as well as strength of opponent, weighing out “power rankings” based on head to head results. Each week, I will discuss five difference makers in wrestling and, using science, prove why they had the best week in wrestling! Greg DeMarco and I will compare our lists, giving you all two different types of power rankings!

1) Colt Cabana & Toru Yano +43 [74 Overall Tag Score]
Jeff Cobb & Mikey Nicholls d. Cabana & Yano, World Tag League 11/16
Cabana & Yano d. IWGP Tag Team Champions Guerillas of Destiny, World Tag League 11/17
Cabana & Yano d. IWGP US Champion Lance Archer & Minoru Suzuki, World Tag League 11/18
Cabana & Yano d. Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI, World Tag League 11/19

These two screw ball partners end up as the first New Japan entry to win the top spot, but that’s for several reasons. They aren’t even an actual “tag team”, but two comedy relief characters who work extremely well together and have found a groove. They only started teaming in the west coast New Japan Showdown Tour earlier this month, but they find themselves 5-1 overall. So on top of the fact they had a 43 point week, which should always catapult anyone to the top spot, they also beat the IWGP Tag Team Champions and earned 27 points in one match, which is tied for the largest amount of points won in New Japan since 2012 (tied with about eight other matches), because the G.O.D. did have a +301 Tag Score, where are prior to the win this team only had a +14 Tag Score, giving them only a 16% chance to win. Not only did they win, they parleyed that momentum into a match against the undefeated in block match team of Ishii and Yoshi-Hashi, and beat them too. No doubt they were the number one entry in our power rankings!

2) Juice Robinson & David Finlay +30 [132 Tag Score]
Juice Robinson & David Finlay d. Hirooki Goto & Karl Fredericks, World Tag League 11/16
Juice Robinson & David Finlay d. Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Satoshi Kojima, World Tag League 11/17
Taichi & Zack Sabre Jr d. Juice Robinson & David Finlay, World Tag League 11/18
Juice Robinson & David Finlay d. Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma, World Tag League 11/19
Juice Robinson & David Finlay d. Hiroshi Tanahashi & Toa Henare, World Tag League 11/21

The Lifeblood partners are one of the best tag teams in all of New Japan. That’s pretty good considering they were both Young Lions just a few years ago. What’s even more impressive here is that David Finlay has a -198 Overall Score as a singles competitor! They find themselves leading the entire Tag League with 8 points after this mornings show just finished. Can they win the whole thing? We will find out next month!

3) Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI +27 [71 Overall Tag Score]
Ishii & Yoshi-Hashi d. Taichi & Zack Sabre Jr, World Tag League 11/16
Ishii & Yoshi-Hashi d. Jeff Cobb & Mikey Nicholls, World Tag League 11/17
Ishii & Yoshi-Hashi d. Shingo Takagi & Terrible, World Tag League 11/18
Cabana & Yano d. Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI, World Tag League 11/19

These two go way back, having teamed up several times a dozen times prior to this Tag League, and they showed their familiarity here, decimating the first three teams they came across in brutal fashion. The Stone Pitbull would not be denied, putting away Taichi, Nicholls, and Terrible all with the Brainbuster! Tomohiro Ishii is a former IWGP Tag Team Champion and he wants to be again. If they can win this tournament, they get an opportunity to do so at WrestleKingdom!

4) Asuka +10 [140 Overall Score]
Asuka d. Natalya, WWE RAW

Asuka has not wrestled a singles match since losing the Smackdown Women’s Champioship in March, for that reason, her 140 Overall Score was not listed on any of the leaderboards prior to this article, but, from 2017-2019, she compiled a 130 Overall Score, and led the women’s division most of the time she was a singles star. Also to note, she has the highest Overall Score in NXT history (272 Overall Score). I need to see some more singles competition before she appears on the leaderboard again, but keep this in mind for future articles! The reason she made my top 5 this week was a lack of competition overall, and the fact that the Empress of Tomorrow was such a dominant singles star before moving to the tag division and reinventing herself.

5) NXT UK Champion Kay Lee Ray +22 [124 Overall Score]
Kay Lee Ray d. Xia Brookside, NXT UK
Kay Lee Ray d. Dakota Kai, NXT

The reigning NXT UK Women’s Champion had herself quite a week! After appearing on NXT last week becoming the fourth member of Team Baszler for WarGames, she defeated Xia Brookside and then Dakota Kai, cementing herself as the undisputed top female star in NXT UK! Hopefully we will begin to see more of Kay Lee Ray, as she is a world traveled star! The reason I felt she belonged in the list this week is because of her dominating wins and her position on Team Baszler as we head into WarGames! Watch for Kay Lee Ray to have some dominating moments inside the double cage this Sunday!

Runners Up:

6) Kyle O’Reilly & Bobby Fish +14 [69 Overall Tag Score]
7) The Revival -14 [2 Overall Tag Score]

WWE Men:

  • Seth Rollins 200 (+4)
  • Roman Reigns 156 (-)
  • Buddy Murphy 142 (+8)
  • WWE Champion Brock Lesnar 139 (-)
  • Braun Strowman 129 (-)
  • Aleister Black 110 (-)
  • Baron Corbin 85 (-)
  • Ricochet 78 (-16)
  • IC Champion Shinsuke Nakamura 53 (-)
  • +US Champion AJ Styles 49 (-)

WWE Women:

  • RAW Women’s Champion Becky Lynch 189 (-)
  • Smackdown Women’s Champion Bayley 170 (-)
  • Charlotte 77 (-)
  • Natalya 9 (-10)
  • Sasha Banks -1 (-)
  • Nikki Cross -14 (-)
  • Lacey Evans -18 (-)
  • Mandy Rose -36 (-)
  • Sonya Deville -72 (-)
  • Carmella -85 (-)

WWE Tag Team:

  • RAW Tag Team Champions The Viking Raiders 151 (+0)
  • Smackdown Tag Team Champions The New Day (Big E & Kofi Kingston) 38 (-)
  • Heavy Machinery 34 (+11)
  • Ziggler & Roode 23 (-18)
  • Cesaro & Nakamura 16 (-)
  • The Revival 2 (-14)
  • The Street Profits 10 (-)
  • Ryder & Hawkins -56 (-)
  • The O.C. -93 (-)

NXT Men:

  • NXT UK Champion WALTER 165 (-)
  • Tommaso Ciampa 149 (-)
  • Pete Dunne 143 (-)
  • Velveteen Dream 122 (-)
  • Matt Riddle 118 (+16)
  • NXT Champion Adam Cole 116 (+12)
  • +Travis Banks 96 (+14)
  • Joe Coffey 94 (-)
  • Jordan Devlin 90 (-)
  • Damian Priest 85 (-)

NXT Women:

  • NXT Women’s Champion Shayna Baszler 268 (-)
  • Toni Storm 129 (-)
  • NXT UK Women’s Champion Kay Lee Ray 124 (+22)
  • Rhea Ripley 105 (-)
  • Io Shirai 83 (-)
  • Jinny 70 (-)
  • Piper Niven 64 (-)
  • Mia Yim 53 (-)
  • Bianca BelAir 23 (-)
  • Tegan Nox 12 (-)

NXT Tag Team

  • NXT Tag Team Champions The Undisputed Era 69 (+14)
  • Imperium 47 (-)
  • NXT UK Tag Team Champions Gallus 37 (-)
  • Young Grizzled Veterans 28 (-)
  • The Forgotten Sons 21 (-11)
  • Lorcan & Burch 0 (-)

AEW Men:

  • Jon Moxley 77 (+15)
  • AEW Champion Chris Jericho 67 (-)
  • PAC 47 (-)
  • Adam Page 30 (-)
  • Cody 29 (-)
  • Darby Allin 16 (-15)
  • MJF 16 (-)
  • +Luchasaurus 15 (+15)
  • Shawn Spears 4 (-)
  • Kenny Omega -1 (-)
  • OUT: Joey Janela

AEW Women:

  • AEW Women’s Champion Riho 77 (-)
  • +Hikaru Shida 35 (+17)
  • Britt Baker 15 (-17)
  • +Emi Sakura 2 (-)
  • Nyla Rose -1 (-)
  • Jamie Hayter -16 (-)
  • Leva Bates -33 (-)

AEW Tag Team:

  • AEW Tag Team Champions SCU (Kazarian/Sky) 86 (-)
  • Private Party 15 (+0)
  • The Lucha Bros 15 (-)
  • Ortiz & Santana 17 (-15)
  • The Young Bucks 14 (+16)
  • The Dark Order 14 (-)
  • Best Friends 0 (+18)

NJPW Men:

  • IWGP Champion Kazuchika Okada 314 (-)
  • Kota Ibushi 207 (-)
  • IWGP Champion Jay White 198 (-)
  • Tetsuya Naito 153 (-)
  • IWGP Jr Champion Will Ospreay 149 (-)
  • Hiroshi Tanahashi 141 (-)
  • British Heavyweight Champion Zack Sabre Jr 116 (-)
  • IWGP Jr Tag Champion El Phantasmo 105 (-)
  • Hirooki Goto 70 (-)
  • IWGP Jr Tag Team Champion Taiji Ishimori 64 (-)

NJPW Tag Team:

  • IWGP Tag Team Champions Guerrillas of Destiny 289 (-12)
  • EVIL & SANADA 264 (+18)
  • El Desperado & Yoshinabu Desperado 193 (-)
  • Juice Robinson & David Finlay 132 (+30)
  • IWGP Jr Tag Team Champions ELP/Ishimori 116 (-)
  • Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii 93 (-)
  • Roppongi 3K 89 (+41)
  • Colt Cabana & Toru Yano 74 (+43)
  • Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI 71 (+27)
  • Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma 47 (+31)


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News From Cook’s Corner 3.1.21: No Big Show

Steve Cook brings the birthday shout outs and a nice variety of different wrestling topics! Check it out!

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Hi, hello & welcome to News From Cook’s Corner! My name is Steve Cook, and I’m somewhat decent at remembering birthdays of people close to me thanks to social media notifications, but ages are another matter. A day ago, I would have wished Larry Csonka a happy 67th birthday. Not that he would have been 67 years old, it’s just a gimmick I do with people that are older than me. Assign them an age much older than they actually are. Greg DeMarco has been on the receiving end of this before.

It’s good times, loved by all. (Actually, Larry hated it and I’m pretty sure Greg does too.)

With the way things have been in the world over the past year, there’s a good chance that if you’re reading this, you’ve lost somebody you cared about over the past year. Wrestling has seen a nearly non-stop parade of death, including the loss of the man who played Jocephus & The Question Mark last week. His passing touched a number of his brothers & sisters in the wrestling business, who posted about how great he was as a person.

All we can do is hang together and help each other through our periods of grief. We all go through it, and it’s definitely been way too much of a thing over the past year.

You can still donate to help out Larry’s family!

It’s tempting to wonder what Larry would think about the things going on now. I won’t pretend to know how he’d react to most of 2021, but I can safely assume that he would be excited as I am about Tully Blanchard having a match on television this week, and also wondering why a bigger deal isn’t being made of it. He probably would have written the best column about Tully Blanchard since 1999.

The best way I can think of to celebrate Larry’s birthday? Ramble through some wrestling news a day after it! Makes sense, right?

AEW Signs Paul Wight

This one came as quite the surprise when it broke on Wednesday. Paul Wight, the wrestler formerly known as The Big Show (or The Giant if you’re more of a WCW fan), has decided to take his wrestling and announcing talents to All Elite Wrestling. Wight had worked for WWE for most of the past twenty-two years, with the exception of February 2007-08. He hadn’t done much with the company over the past several years, appearing for brief periods of time in the ring. WWE did help produce The Big Show Show, a sitcom that lasted one season on Netflix.

It seems like this comes down to Wight wanting to do more, and WWE not really having anything for him to do. Since his sitcom was ended, he only made a handful of appearances on WWE television, with his last appearance consisting of Randy Orton berating him for not being able to wrestle anymore. Wight will apparently be doing some wrestling in AEW, which will be interesting on a number of levels since there isn’t a bevy of talent there that’s anywhere near his size. I mean, there is Shaq, and that’s been a dream match for some for years, but there’s no telling whether or not Shaq will be back after his tag match this week. He’ll also be announcing alongside Tony Schiavone on AEW’s new YouTube show titled AEW Dark: Elevation.

AEW has made it a priority to keep increasing their online presence, as we saw on Sunday night when they aired some of their Women’s Championship Eliminator matches on Bleacher Report’s website. Including Riho vs. Thunder Rosa, which made some pretty angry when it was announced as they would have preferred to see the match on Dynamite. While I get that they need matches like that to draw eyeballs to new platforms, it will raise some eyebrows from those that see things like this as demotions. They aren’t meant as demotions, as having Wight on this new show further indicates.

I don’t see this changing the momentum of the wrestling wars, but I think its nice for older talent to have viable options other than a WWE Legends contract.

WWE: Still Big In India

Jinder Mahal WWE Bold Prediction

People like to make a big deal of how many viewers these wrestling shows have. One thing we often forget: Americans aren’t the only people that watch television! Sure, on average we probably watch more programming via various devices than anybody else. However, there’s a great big world out there of people watching wrestling that we often don’t keep track of!

Fortunately, we have people like Lucha Libre Online to keep track of places like India for us. Here’s what they told us!

4 million people watch Raw every week, while 3 million watch SmackDown and 1 million watch NXT. Which makes me wonder if Raw viewers are forced to choose between SmackDown & NXT. Are they in the same time slot?

People are making a big deal about how this means more people in India are watching WWE than in the US. I mean…India has a few more people, right? I’m guessing their share of the overall audience is lower than it is here.

All I know for sure is that all this proves that India doesn’t need Jinder Mahal pushed on top to remain interested in WWE.

NWA Pulls Videos From YouTube

NWA Power

I have to admit that I was concerned when WrestlingInc & other websites drew my attention to the fact that the NWA had pulled their videos from YouTube. Not really the best timing on that either, as I’m sure there were fans of Jocephus & Question Mark looking for something to watch after his tragic death last week. It’s easy to see why people thought the worst.

As we know, the NWA has virtually ceased production since the pandemic started. A good amount of their wrestling talent has moved on to other opportunities. If David Lagana has been replaced behind the scenes, we haven’t heard who it is. Heck, the women’s division has pretty much become part of AEW. We’ve been waiting to hear some kind of NWA news for awhile now, either good or bad.

We’ve finally got something new coming from the NWA. Dave Meltzer reported that they’ll be holding TV tapings from March 21-24. No word on where the tapings will be taking place, if fans will be allowed, or who will be involved. As we’ve noticed, a good number of NWA wrestlers have moved on to other places. Hopefully the NWA will be able to fill those slots with new, compelling characters that can give fans the same level of enjoyment they got out of Powerrr.

I’m always in favor of more wrestling produced for the people.

Marty Scrull Returns to New Japan

Marty Scurll

Our friends at Fightful got the inside scoop from the NJPW Strong tapings back in January and found out that Marty Scrull appeared on the show. He did an angle with Rocky Romero that will presumably air at some point. Scrull has not been seen or heard from in any major way since parting ways with Ring of Honor.

I remember reading before that New Japan might be the most likely landing spot for Scrull, since apparently sleeping or doing other things with underage females is less frowned upon over there. And there is a bit of a difference between having someone work for you as a wrestler or in a management position. Scrull was management in ROH, and keeping him around would have been unneeded publicity.

That’s what all of these Speaking Out defendants are going to be dealing with in their attempts to return to pro wrestling. The ones that haven’t yet will try eventually, it’s just a matter of timing and business. Companies will bring in these people if they find them valuable. New Japan finds value in Marty Scrull, who has enough friends there to help him out.

The question, as I’ve stated before, is if fans feel strongly enough about Scrull and his failings to hold it against the people that employ him. If they do, and they don’t watch NJPW Strong, Scrull won’t be around for too long. If fans don’t care, then promotions don’t need to, and Scrull will be twirling his umbrella back into the wrestling world.

As for my opinion? I’m really the wrong person to ask, as Marty Scrull wasn’t a draw for me before all his business came out. I’m not inclined to watch his stuff, but I already wasn’t. What matters is how the people that did fawn over Scrull in the past take to him now.

Klein vs. ROH

Kelly Klein

Its been a minute or two since we’ve talked much about the former Women of Honor Champion. It wasn’t too long before the pandemic when all of this drama went public with Kelly’s allegations about her treatment in Ring of Honor, Kelly getting divorced after her former husband (BJ Whitmer) accused her of being unfaithful with the man assisting her in making allegations (Joey Mercury), and ROH eventually stripping her of their championship and not renewing her contract.

Things died down on this front over the past year, largely due to the global pandemic thing. Klein isn’t going away though, as she filed a lawsuit against Ring of Honor & Sinclair Broadcasting, naming Greg Gilliland, Delirious & Jay Lethal as defendants. Klein’s issues with ROH came to a head when she suffered a concussion during a match and there was no protocol or staff on hand to address her problem. There were other issues, including pay, which apparently ROH’s female roster members get considerably less of than the males.

ROH has never really had much interest in pushing women’s wrestling. That’s just a fact. The Women of Honor re-boot in 2018 seemed to be a step in that direction, but the company quickly lost interest in featuring the competitors. Since the debut of the ROH bubble, the only woman regularly appearing on television has been the studio host, Quinn McKay. McKay has an angle going with Mandy Leon & Angelina Love, but that hasn’t been touched on at all on television and has been confined to an Internet show where they did one confrontation and that was it. Leon & Love appear in the opening video, but that’s the only place they’ve appeared on television in months. Vita Von Starr appears with The Righteous on occasion & Maria Kanellis-Bennett recently made her on-screen return to commentate on a match.

So, no, it doesn’t surprise me that ROH had/has no interest in paying women equally to men.

There’s a lot going on within the lawsuit, including harassment claims directed towards Lethal. The main thing to keep an eye on here for wrestling purposes? Klein is claiming that she was an employee, not an independent contractor, and the State of Maryland has a strong policy to ensure that workers are not misclassified. So we’re saying there’s a chance this issue might actually be addressed in a court of law after how many years. Stay tuned.

That’s all we have time for this week! Thanks for reading, and keep your stick on the ice.


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Opinion

NXT Minus 6: The Most Pointless Match Ever

There are some things Brad really enjoyed, and others that made no sense. Do you agree with his assessments?

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Not just pointless. It was Charles Barkley turrible. 

Dexter Lumis - NXT Entrance (15-04-20) - YouTube

6. Dexter Lumis is in dire need of a makeover. Since his debut two years ago, the only thing that’s changed is the possible addition of new arm tattoos. Great athlete. Deceptively agile. No depth to his character. He is the worst thing you can be in wrestling. Boring. 

POLLOCK'S REVIEW: NXT UK 10/24 feat. Fans revolting on Zack Gibson

5. Zack Gibson strikes again. Drake Maverick & Killian Dain are Shrek and Donkey. Savage! Gibson is on the mic what Wade Barrett needs to be. I like watching him wrestle. I love listening to him talk. 

NXT Next Week: WWE Women's Tag Team Titles Will Be On The Line 4. How good was it to hear Shayna Baszler’s music again in NXT? I am cranked to 11 for the women’s tag team title match. So many stories. Baszler and Dakota Kai have a long history. Raquel Gonzalez and Nia Jax, the two biggest, baddest bitches in WWE are out to prove who is the alpha bitch. Titles on the line. Baszler’s homecoming. Kai’s shot at validation. I’m smelling MOTY contender.

Xia Li reacts after gruesome double attack on this week's WWE NXT

3. I am fully and deeply committed to the notion that Xia Li is the baddest person in the entire NXT locker room, male or female. Madame Li, I will never get on your bad side. If I accidentally cross that line, I will change my name and flee the unidentified state in which I currently reside. Un-Lished.  

2. That thing between Santa Claus Ice Cream Bar and Doomsday Saito was possibly the most pointless match ever. The feud was based on nothing. Why is a heavyweight going after a cruiserweight? Why do they continue to pretend Ice Cream Bar is a cruiser when he clearly isn’t? How does Saito survive a 3-on-1 beat down to pop up fresh as a daisy and get the victory? It dragged on and on and on and on and on and on and on, clocking in at just under 92 hours. Let us never speak of this match again. No, it doesn’t get a pic. 

WWE NXT results – 24/02/2021 (No DQ match, NXT Women's Champion Io Shirai in action) » FirstSportz

1. This week’s That’s Why I Love Wrestling goes to…unidentified camera man! I’m on my couch, digging Leon Ruff’s entrance. BTW, his music kicks all kinds of ass. Ruff is hanging on the ropes, loving life, when BAM! Kick to the head from Swerve Scott. I was genuinely surprised, never saw it coming, because the camera man was fully focused on Ruff, and so was I. Nice work, unidentified camera man.  


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