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Mitchell’s WWE Backstage Report! (4/28/20)

HBK is Backstage!

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WWE Backstage 2020

The Heartbreak Kid goes Backstage!

After FS1 plays his best matches and moments, Shawn Michaels goes Backstage! What will the WWE legend have to say about everything going on?

Renee Young welcomes us Backstage!

She is so very happy that we are tuning in and that she and the panel is able to still do these episodes during these very trying times. Joining her again is Booker T, Christian and Mark Henry! The three Hall of Famers are GOODT as always. But Christian says he needs a haircut before he looks like 2001 Christian. No, bring it back! But with Money in the Bank less than two weeks away, there were many more superstars scrambling for their opportunity. In case you missed it, here’s…

Just the Highlights!

On SmackDown: The Forgotten Sons are ready to strike any team at any time. That’s why they started a brawl with the other tag teams! Bayley and Sasha Banks are not on the same page, again, and that cost The Boss a chance at MITB! Baron Corbin meanwhile punches his ticket, with some help. And the HHH XXV celebration began with more of a roast. Between HBK and Vince McMahon, it was “absolutely rotten!”

On Raw: The Modern Day Maharaja is BACK! Nia Jax left Asuka and Shayna Baszler down and out with help from a ladder, and Apollo Crews looks to be out of MITB! Crews’ knee could not hold up, now he might have missed his one shot at the world title. And speaking of, the world title match is official, and Drew McIntyre gave Buddy Murphy the shot meant for the Monday Night Messiah! Will that happen again at MITB?

The panel discusses.

“Man, we had to bleep that S-Bomb!” But McIntyre’s dream came true at WrestleMania when he slayed the Beast, but now he must face fellow beastslayer in Seth Rollins. How was that closing segment last night? Booker always liked contract signings back in the day. And it was brilliant for McIntyre to point out how it was going to go, because they always end up like that. What Booker likes about McIntyre is that he’s stepping into his own. Even having to go out there without a crowd, McIntyre brings the realism into the arena. McIntyre is almost a throwback to what Booker was seeing when he was coming up: a man in the middle of that squared circle. Renee wants to point out just how far McIntyre threw that table.

Mark Henry says it was great. Rollins is really believing everything he is saying. And of course, McIntyre came exactly how Henry wanted him to, phrasing it as Rollins believing his own BS. Henry definitely popped. Christian liked both sides of it. He liked McIntyre telling Lawler to move aside, and then kept his cool while getting right to business. Then from Rollins, he is playing off some real feelings here. He feels he is a leader, and feels like his performances weren’t getting the reactions. The fans weren’t doing their part, so this is the byproduct of that. Booker adds that Rollins was put in that position and either you deliver or drop the ball. Being the Monday Night Messiah is huge, but Rollins is definitely in that JBL spot, “Wrestling God!” JBL wasn’t even the best pure wrestler, but he was the best performer. Rollins is channeling that and it’s beautiful.

Renee asks Henry what he thinks of Murphy. Well one, he got his face kicked off. And two, he served his purpose of saving Rollins. Rollins is off his meds, and his work rate is something not seen since the Attitude Era, like The Rock, HBK, HHH and Austin. And Booker, too. Booker appreciates that. But back to Rollins’ character, being delusional makes him the kind of guy you want to see in this match.

Renee moves things over to SmackDown. Many new faces have been making splashes, and the already deep tag team division is getting even deeper. To Christian, he likes that the Forgotten Sons have the chips on their shoulders, and he likes what he’s seen so far. He likes the message of serving their country but aren’t appreciated for it. Training differently gives them an edge, and stating their mission of using those talents to serve themselves now is a unique take. And between the three brands, each show feels different, and Christian says the same as he did for Elias: moving over from NXT to SmackDown worked better for him, and now it works better for them. Booker isn’t so sure yet, but this is a sink or swim position. It’s something he does like, because when he was put in that situation, he likes the element of surprise. You gotta hit hard, fast and first, and that’s what he likes. Will they make it on SmackDown? Who knows. He needs to see more before giving a stamp of approval.

Henry spent time with the Forgotten Sons, and he went through the same training they went through in the Funk’n Dojo. After coming out of that, all three are well-seasoned who can do it all in the ring. Henry spent time in North Carolina for that Tribute to the Troops event. These guys are a cohesive unit for sure. Also Henry got to get some Jell-O from the mess hall. There’s always room for Jell-O. But meeting their fellow soldiers, they all said the same thing. These three work together, they’re brothers. Christian points out there’s three of them, like the New Day. We might never know who is competing in any giving match, so there could be layers to this. Renee says the SmackDown Tag Division is looking GOODT.

 

He’s not your boy toy!

But he is one of the best to ever do it! If he’s not on your Mount Rushmore of wrestlers, you’re doing it wrong. Shawn Michaels joins Renee and says all those old pictures in the montage are from a long time ago. He doesn’t look anything like that anymore. But his “quarantine beard” is still very distinguished. SmackDown had him and HHH celebrate the 25 year anniversary. And if you’re not down with that… Social distancing! Vince McMahon joined in on the roast, “Good night, padre.” But what was it like putting that together? Well they’re friends enough that they could do that. It started as a comedy segment, but at the end, it seemed like the only people who knew that were him and HHH. But HBK got that social distancing joke from his daughter. She denied him a hug after he came home from work. Well good for her to get writer’s credit.

Also, it was a hilarious twist for HHH not to be able to do his signature entrance with the water bottle. Well, clearly this is an interesting time in our lives. HBK has learned a lot of new stuff. Just when you think you’ve seen everything, you get shown you haven’t. It’s interesting if nothing else. But how was it to put that segment together to summarize 25 years, and then have Vince add on? Well again, HBK doesn’t want to throw anyone under the bus, but there was a lot more stuff in there that they couldn’t get to. Some things just weren’t going to work, but it was still fun. And more importantly, it’s always fun for HBK and HHH to work together. Believe it or not, there’s always a real-life aspect to their work together. If for no other reason, that was the fun part.

Renee does admit it’s a shame HBK never got his 25th anniversary celebration. What happened that he got robbed of that opportunity? HBK never gets happy birthday tweets or anything like that, but he’s okay with that. He likes being under the radar now. For one, the beard shouldn’t be on camera. Nah, we always want HBK on our screens, and being under the radar isn’t really fitting of truly one of the best. But now that he’s helping the next generation, what’s that like? A blast, really. That’s the reason he wants to be behind the scenes now. As HHH has expressed, it’s even more enjoyable watching the new generation have their moment. It has been so much more fulfilling than HBK thought, and loves every aspect. It’s never tough to go to work like this, and he is absolutely supportive of this new generation.

Then who is he keeping an eye on? That’s an always changing group in NXT. There was McIntyre, Aleister, Ricochet, The Revival and that class. Andrade, Gargano and Ciampa, of course. The list goes on and on. But now, we’ve got Killer Kross, or Karrion now. Dexter Lumis, Tim Thatcher, and many more are going to take NXT to the next level. Renee does bring up one superstar who gives HBK credit for his career. Drew McIntyre spoke to HBK helping him at the Performance Center. HBK was willing to help him, and McIntyre was MORE than willing to be helped. It was like a wrestling PhD with HBK. What a ride to see McIntyre rise to the top. HBK says that kind of moment is why he’s doing this now. McIntyre didn’t have to drive that four hour round trip, but he did, and was always open and willing to learn and improve.

McIntyre has so much natural talent and ability. He had to go to the bottom and work his way back up, but he was so appreciative and respectful. What’s great about McIntyre is he’s already impressive just from standing there. But he didn’t want to be one dimensional. He wanted to have depth and levels, and that is what HBK enjoyed being a part of. Adding that range because the audience is so much more sophisticated, beating people up just isn’t enough anymore. There need to be levels for longevity, and McIntyre was open to that. McIntyre physically didn’t have to be more than an action star, and HBK loves that.

Speaking of longevity, Edge’s return has already shown he hasn’t missed a step. HBK had his own return after a long hiatus, and his second run may have been his best. Has HBK been able to talk with Edge? Yes, and they’ve certainly talked about Edge’s return. HBK wanted to hear Edge’s reasoning and feelings, and it was surprising that it sounded so much like HBK’s. The doctors say you can’t, but then after some time, you understand that pro-wrestling is unlike anything else. It is up to the wrestlers to determine what can’t be done. Especially when there’s still the questions to be answered. That leaves you the window of opportunity. You should still lean on the side of the doctors, but Edge is smart enough to weigh is options. HBK is thrilled Edge can end things on his terms now. It gives everyone hope of comebacks like this.

Renee brings HBK on a trip down memory lane back to exactly 24 years ago. It was 4/28/1996, In Your House 7, when Kevin “Big Diesel” Nash POWERBOMBED HBK through a table!! But in the end, HBK came back to hit Sweet Chin Music and get the win! That was Nash’s last match before going to WCW. The biggest thing HBK remembers the powerbomb more than anything. They hadn’t done it much period at that time, and that is just one part of the craziness in that match. But it was a match that let them go outside the WWE box, and that made the match even better.

Now, Renee heard HBK has spoken to two superstars having the HBK-Nash relationship. Who are they? HBK was just using it as an example. It would be Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez. Obviously there are differences because Dakota and Raquel are ladies, but that’s the parallel they could follow. The brash cocky one and the heater dynamic could work going forward. This is why HBK needs to be in NXT! His wealth of knowledge! Hopefully next time, we talk to HBK live and in studio.

 

Backstage shares a Tweet from Kennesaw State.

They congratulated Bronson Rechsteiner, son of Rick Steiner of the Steiner Brothers, on being drafted to the NFL Baltimore Ravens! The WWE congratulates him as well, and hopefully he’ll be pulling off the same moves that dad Rick and Uncle Scott did back in the day.

 

The panel talks a 2020 WWE Backstage Draft!

Each panelist gets to choose five current WWE superstars to build a company around! We begin with Booker T! Booker already thought about this, so his first is Shayna Baszler! The Queen of Spades will make the Women’s Division as strong and as real as possible! Then second is Rhea Ripley! Charlotte Flair is a diamond, but the Ripper is a diamond in the rough that needs some polish. Then third, Drew McIntyre! Not just because he’s champion, but because he’s a guy that a company needs as a bonafide true heavyweight! Fourth, Roman Reigns! No better leader than the Big Dog for your locker room. He will bring everyone together and bring the noise to the PPV! And lastly, the Phenomenal AJ Styles! And there you have it, the perfect company is built, and you can take it to the bank! Amazing promo work. Has Booker ever done this before?

Christian is glad Booker didn’t draft himself. But his five are: first, Edge! Duh. Just look at his resume. No one has more championships than Edge! He elevates those around him. Then, much like Booker, Christian takes Rhea Ripley. She’s already this good, and she isn’t even in her prime. She has the potential to perhaps be the very best ever. Third is Aleister Black. He has ice in his veins and isn’t intimidated. Fourth is McIntyre, the heir apparent. And he still has another level! McIntyre and Edge could get up to that next level together. Fifth and final, Bray Wyatt. Christian will say it again, he’s a generational superstar. When you need that “trick play,” that something no one expects, put him out there. Great analogy!

And Henry has put some thought into this five. He thinks versatility for his roster. First on that list is Kevin Owens. KO can do it all, from good guy to bad guy to in between. He elevates like Edge does, and everyone comes out better. Then the “unflappable” Randy Orton. Orton is in his prime but still has room to grow. He can lead the roster, also has more championships than anyone else, and there’s the debate between him and Edge. Then just as everyone said, the “Grown ass man,” Drew McIntyre! McIntyre went away as a kid, came back a man, and slayed the Beast! Fourth is the number one female, Charlotte Flair! Woo if you got it. Henry loves her, and she is one everyone can battle just to see who is second. Last but not least, BRRROCK! LESNARRR! The Beast may have lost to McIntyre, but everyone needs that moment where you fall but have to get back up. Lesnar will come back angry, and he might not even come after the title. He is just coming for McIntyre.

Henry had more, but Rollins makes honorable mention, and the rest are all great women. Renee says that salvages the draft. Booker says that’s politicking. Lesnar is too much on the payroll. And Orton’s a loner, not a leader. But all interesting moves. No one went with Seth Rollins or Becky Lynch. While talking about a strong women’s division, they didn’t take the strongest and most popular woman in years. Henry did say his top 10 had women so she’s in there. Sure, sure. But Booker says this all came together like a small promotion down in Houston, TX called Reality of Wrestling. Shameless plug!

 

The Modern Day Maharaja has returned!

Natalya’s tweet in response was pretty simple: JINDER! (clapping emoji). Fans like Ghulam Ali tweeted out Jinder Mahal is Back (flex emoji times two) #DontHinderTheJinder. A former world champion and polarizing force, how does the panel feel? Henry is excited to see Jinder back looking like Adonis! Jinder’s only weakness was his legs, but not now! He got some squats in. Low and slow, baby. Booker says Jinder was one of his guys. He was always close to the Fave Five, but what Booker would’ve liked was a big build up. The King is back, so to speak. But Mahal could’ve been built up bigger for this.

Christian’s feelings are that we got that YouTube promo about Jinder being disrespected, and so that works out. Maybe it was meant to be this surprise. Christian likes Jinder, even as Champlain. He was happy for Jinder. But Jinder needed to find that second gear to stay up there. He is that talented. Just look at McIntyre build himself up. If Jinder can follow that blueprint, there’s no reason to think he can’t get back there. For now, US Championship or even MITB now that Crews is out. Booker agrees, the Maharaja just needs ten weeks of more Tozawa matches. Every week, someone that size needs to be fed to Mahal to build himself up so that fans can feel a certain way. There is no rush right now. Renee feels Mahal definitely will get those opportunities. Speaking of great opportunities…

Apollo went for gold, but busted.

The knee gives out and El Idolo takes advantage. A heartbreaking finish, but what does Booker think about this move? Don’t get emotional. Booker feels bad for this bait and switch on Crews, but when he first saw Crews, he checks off all the boxes. Going out there, jumping all over, it was bound to happen. Not if but when you get hurt. So Crews had a chance to make a huge impact, and going against Andrade, having a chance but missing it, that’s on him. But Crews will surely have another chance.

 

Backstage has Gronk’s Twitter video!

From the official Tampa Bay Buccaneers account, “Mr. 24/7” says that they will need a LOT of security to make sure he doesn’t lose the WWE 24/7 Championship during a game. Every tunnel, every entrance, just everywhere Gronk will go. He has the world coming for him, even his friends. But it is a special honor to be champion during the quarantine, because now no one can touch him. He is going to be champion for a long time, but he’s ready. What’s crazy is that the security people might come for him, so he has to watch out for them, too.

Renee says it isn’t just the WWE superstars who want after that belt. Dennis Rodman would love to be back in the ring. And against Gronk? Why not? He talks crap, but Rodman wants to do this. It isn’t about money, it’s about wrestling. What does the panel think of Gronk VS Rodzilla? Christian puts it this way: It’s like putting Christian in the Super Bowl, or Game 7 of the NBA Championship. Everyone wants to be in the big game, but not everyone deserves to be. Gronk VS Rodman will be a cluster! Neither guy will know what they’re doing. Henry says that Rodman needs to know how to say Gronk’s name. But it would be entertaining because of how it’ll be a giant cluster! That will be more exciting than a mat classic. Booker says they’re thinking too small. If Booker sees Rodman and Gronk, book this in the biggest strip club in the city, with a lot of liquor and partying. That’s the biggest party of the summer!

Rodman earned five different NBA Championships, back-to-back with the Pistons, then three-peat with the Bulls. But Henry has a story of his brush with Bulls greatness. Yes, he went to the hotel to see Charles Barkley and others, and then Michael Jordan walks up. They didn’t recognize each other, it got tense, but both guys apologized. Jordan’s birthday came up, he invited Henry, had a great time, and it wasn’t even a big deal after that. Speaking of apologies, apologies to this picture but what is THIS!? Henry nude with just a big 45 pound weight in the way! That’s called empowering. The true origins of Sexual Chocolate!

 

WWE Backstage flashbacks to the Sports Radio Roast of Booker T!

Three years ago, friends and colleagues of Booker’s playfully poked fun at his legacy. MVP said that Booker is “the five-time, five-time, five-time,” WCW World Champion. An amazing achievement to brag about! Like if MVP went around bragging about being the five-time, five-time, five-time Florida Department of Corrections Inmate of the Month. Booker’s Reality of Wrestling YouTube channel has the rest. But clearly, not everyone was invited to that special moment, but that’s what this show is for! Christian and Henry get to let loose! Henry says that we all should have a mute button for Booker. That way, we can wait until Booker actually has something important to say to hear him, or keep him from interrupting.

Christian won’t sit here and make fun of his friend. They’ve been up and down the road, so Christian won’t do that. He won’t agree with the mute. He doesn’t need to roast Booker, because every time Booker opens his mouth, he roasts himself. Renee’s only issue is that Booker thinks “The Sam,” a crab on a tomato, is a dish. Booker chants, “You Suck!” The Sam is good! But for now, that’s good enough for Backstage this week. Tune in next week after another FS1 marathon of The Best of WWE!


My Thoughts:

A really fun episode, and it was great having so many hall of famers on the episode. HBK being on was a lot of fun, it was great to hear him talk about the new generation and to hear the new generation talk about him. I like his idea that Dakota and Raquel follow a similar pattern to him and Nash. Dakota and Raquel still have a lot of possibilities as a duo, but seeing them split and I would think turn Dakota back to Face would be something great down the line. I honestly felt Team Kick (Dakota and Tegan Nox) was split too soon, not that what we’ve gotten since has been bad. Dakota and Tegan could follow an HHHBK route, where sometimes they’re enemies, sometimes their friends, but overall they’re two forces that help each other improve to iconic levels.

I like the draft picks the panel came up with, and naturally McIntyre was on all their top five because of how great he really is. I wish they’d been able to devote more time to talking about Apollo Crews. Surely they all have theories on what this change to the MITB match means, but I do think there will be something on the go-home Raw that appoints the replacement. That last spot for Raw definitely goes to a Heel now, but probably more one of Zelina Vega’s guys than the returning Mahal. Mahal can take his time, build up to something, and then strike in time for a summer PPV. As I said on Raw, I wouldn’t mind if there was reference to 3MB at some point for Mahal and McIntyre.


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Mitchell’s Talking Smack Report! (2/27/21)

YES! YES! YES! Talking Smack!

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WWE Talking Smack

Will Talking Smack say YES and #EmbraceTheVision?

The newEST episode might be the biggEST yet, as Bianca Belair, Daniel Bryan and SETH ROLLINS are all on Talking Smack!

 

Kayla Braxton welcomes us back to the show!

We had an electrifying Elimination Chamber and we’re on the way to Fastlane on the Road to WrestleMania! And Paul Heyman looks fresh, looks snazzy! Is that new? Has he not looked snazzy before? Was he old and tired then? Kayla likes to think her fashion sense has rubbed off on him. Heyman is “bad at bougie.” Kayla finally got her eyes checked and finally saw how good he looks. And no, they will not be going on a date. He will be calling HR about the harassments. Well new topic before we get way off the rails, Kayla says the Elimination Chamber PPV was great, and Roman Reigns retained his title. Kayla lets the crew know to keep going because she will be.

But Friday Night SmackDown saw that once again, things didn’t go Daniel Bryan’s way. There’s the WrestleMania sign, and the main event is supposed to be Roman VS Edge because Edge chose Roman, but Bryan still wants to be Universal Champion before then. Is there a bit of Heyman and Roman that is nervous? Heyman crumples up papers and throws it away. Heyman wants us to kiss his kosher tukus. Roman sweats no man as he is the “end all, be all,” and is THE WrestleMania main event! That main event will be against Edge. Bryan can wish and hope and dream and fantasize about a match against Roman Reigns, “and it ain’t gonna happen.”

And why is that? Because Roman is locked in against Edge! All Bryan is trying to do is “upset the apple cart.” That won’t happen against the Reignsing, Defending, Undisputed, Uncontroverted main event and Universal Champion, Roman Reigns. Bryan will be joining us later on, but first, a guest Heyman is very happy to see, it is the Savior of SmackDown!

Seth Rollins joins Talking Smack!

Heyman says the pleasure is all his, and this is an honor, as well. Rollins is a little sore, maybe dizzy, from being in Cesaro’s swing. How is he feeling? Rollins had to find his stomach. It got to the seventh row. Rollins also recompressed his spine, and he feels much better sitting here. An unfortunate series of events tonight, but sometimes you have to take it on the chin and move on. It’s great, it really is, it’s all great. But then they replay the footage of the insane amount of rotations, and Kayla notes that Cesaro basically rejected Rollins’ offer. Rollins wants us to remember that he didn’t invite Cesaro out there, that’s fake news.

Cesaro interrupted Rollins tonight after turning on Rollins last week. Cesaro even patronized Rollins, then he’s rude this week. Rollins wanted to offer his help to get Cesaro to the next level, everything Rollins touches turns to gold, and that’s all Rollins was trying to do. But then, did Rollins perhaps spoke too soon about Cesaro not having killer instinct? That swing looked pretty killer to Kayla. Rollins is just here, sitting at this table, having a conversation with them. It’s not how many times you get knocked down but how many times you get back up! Where’s Cesaro’s killer instinct? Nowhere! Without Rollins’ help, Cesaro may find it, he may not. Slim chances, really, but that’s just Rollins’ opinion.

Heyman says Kayla is being too critical. And in this case, the phrase would be, “It’s not how many times you get swung around, it’s whether you get back up.” Rollins is up, yes. Heyman admits that his Tribal Chief, Roman Reigns, has seen the media that Rollins has done recently. It is all quite impressive. Rollins was on The Bump! Roman and Heyman missed that one. Partially Kayla, partially #FakeNews. But Roman is quite flattering of Rollins, which makes the Special Counsel a little concerned. Not because Cesaro is more of a man or more of a competitor, “but because he is on such a tear right now.”

To Heyman, Cesaro has finally found what he hasn’t been able to before, and now he’s in a zone he’s never found before. That zone, combined with his superhuman strength, makes Cesaro one of the more dangerous superstars in the WWE today. Now Rollins is a visionary, that even Heyman is inspired by. Rollins took time off rightfully so, but Heyman is inspired by Rollins’ vision for the future. The only concern is that Cesaro will disrupt that vision. Rollins says that is fair, because everything Heyman said about Cesaro is true. What Rollins was saying about Cesaro was true. But as a Special Counsel, Heyman surely understands that “sometimes things go the easy way.” People just understand, get along, life is good.

Other times, that’s not how people come to an understanding. Cesaro wants to take the hard road. Rollins isn’t sure where that’ll lead them, but he vows Cesaro will learn that the things Heyman said about Rollins are true, too. Rollins tried to talk to Cesaro, Cesaro made this difficult, but it will all be okay. “We” will be just fine. Heyman thanks Rollins for gracing them with his presence. Rollins appreciates them having him. So until then, no more fake news, Kayla.

As Rollins leaves, Heyman turns to Kayla and says that when he came onto set today, mostly that he’s not a morning person, but his back has been killing him. All he did was shake Rollins’ hand, and he felt better! He’s not saying he was healed, but something is very special about Rollins. Kayla sighs, and says Heyman is just a bandwagoner. But moving on to one of their favorites, she is the woman that lasted the longEST in the Women’s Royal Rumble and won it all, and is now the challenger to the SmackDown Women’s Championship, it’s the E S T!

Bianca Belair joins Talking Smack!

Kayla wants Bianca to bop Heyman with her ponytail. But then Bianca wants to show off the boots and she hops up on the table! She celebrates choosing Sasha banks, and she asks if she should hop back down. History is being made, the decision was made, and now it will be The Boss VS The EST! What made her choose Sasha over Asuka? Well, Bianca hops back down, and she says Asuka is great, The Empress of All Day, Everyday, but something felt right about choosing Sasha. WrestleMania is already big, but how to make it bigger? The first two African American women headlining, that’s how! That’s magical!

Kayla knows Bianca got emotional before over this moment, but doesn’t she have to pinch herself? We’re just a little over a month from WrestleMania, has that settled in yet? Bianca says winning the Women’s Rumble was one thing, but to be facing Sasha Banks in WrestleMania, the decision made it real. She was shaking from excitement! Her mom was texting and talking Bianca up, and Bianca is so excited for what this means. No matter what happens, history is made, probably one of the biggEST moments in Bianca’s young career, and it’s against Sasha Banks.

Kayla says Bianca has made serious waves, but you can’t take anything away from Sasha. So how does Bianca plan to show the world that she is equal to The Boss? Bianca took some weeks before making a decision because of how big it is. And Sasha, ever since Bianca walked into the Performance Center, was on Bianca’s mind. Sasha is one of the NXT Four Horsewomen, there are records and barriers she’s broken.

Now Bianca isn’t jealous, because all of that is inspiring. Sasha says she’s the best, but Bianca is the EST, so she has to prove that by facing the best! Bianca is happy but she isn’t content. She wants to be THE SmackDown Women’s Champion. Sasha is great, but the new kid on the block is going to prove herself on the GrandEST Stage of Them All! Kayla loves to see it! Heyman tells Bianca she’s earned every bit of this. Bianca shoves off the boots one last time before heading out.

Heyman say she agrees with Kayla, and he has said everything he can say to Bianca as a challenger. That’s why he didn’t say much tonight, or this afternoon, morning, or tomorrow, or next week, or any time, other than Bianca faces one of, if not the greatest, SmackDown Women’s Champions ever in Sasha Banks. Heyman has spoken to Bianca as a challenger, and looks forward to talking to her as a champion next time. Kayla agrees there 100%. But YES, we have one last guest, and Heyman wants to get out of here now, but Heyman’s said things about this man, it is THE GOAT!

Daniel Bryan joins Talking Smack!

Back again! Bryan says Heyman didn’t want him here because Bryan is going to bring up that 80’s mullet braid that Heyman had and how he’d swing it like Bianca did. It was amazing, it has to be somewhere online. Heyman used to wear a thong and asked for singles, but… No one ever did. That’s the saddest ever. That’s why Heyman went into this industry. But Kayla notes that things haven’t gone Bryan’s way the last week, so how does he feel about that? Bryan wants to talk more Elimination Chamber than SmackDown, actually. Well congrats on that win in the Chamber! Third time ever! Can’t win a Rumble, but he can win that. But at the end of Sunday, Bryan didn’t feel like a winner.

Bryan has worked really hard in his career, and always puts his best foot forward. Over the last year, Bryan’s done his best to take a step back, and push others forward. The WWE has amazing talent! When Bryan was last here, he was talking about Cesaro and how great Cesaro is, and people saw that! People know how great SmackDown’s roster is! Bryan goes through the Elimination Chamber, he has his win, and then Roman capitalizes on him. Bryan’s done this before, he can do it again. But then he gets beat “really, really quick.” Bryan is okay with losing. He’s lost a lot of matches, too.

But then Bryan gets out of the ring, Edge spears Roman, and Edge points to the Mania sign. Bryan loves Edge, but that was when Bryan felt like “an absolute failure.” Two guys in the main event of WrestleMania, only wrestled a total of three matches this year. Bryan went in there, fought with all his heart against five other men who were fighting with their whole heart. Even guys Bryan doesn’t really like, from Jey Uso to Kevin Owens and Baron Corbin. But Bryan felt like a failure because for the last 12 months, Bryan put himself on the back burner for these other guys, and then he failed. “Then came the deepest realization of them all. And it’s that I failed myself.”

The WWE did this personality profile years ago, testing the top stars about things, and after Bryan did his, the lady told him, “This is incredible. You are in the bottom one percentile for ambition. This is the lowest ambition score I’ve ever seen!” How is that possible when he’s so successful? It’s because Bryan loves what he does. In that moment at Chamber, Bryan realized that he’s more ambitious than he knew. And the fact that it’s Roman and Edge, and not Bryan in there, who in the last 8 days wrestled more than those men combined in 2021! Do you understand?! Bryan tries to wrestle on every Friday Night SmackDown, and if there were live shows, Bryan would wrestle on those, too! Bryan will fight anyone!

On Sunday, Bryan sat on the ground while two men who wrestled only THREE matches get to main event Mania!! Bryan failed Bryan. So how does it feel to win the Chamber? Not good at all. Kayla offers Heyman time to respond. Heyman smirks, and says, “I’m gonna make your day.” Heyman has the opportunity of a lifetime for Bryan. The Special Counsel has been authorized by Roman Reigns to make Bryan this following offer: If Bryan wants a Universal Championship match against Roman Reigns BEFORE Edge and WrestleMania, aka at Fastlane, then next week on SmackDown, Bryan is offered a rematch with Jey Uso. And if Bryan wins that rematch, it’ll be Roman VS Bryan for the Universal Championship at Fastlane.

But if Bryan loses, then Bryan must ACKNOWLEDGE Roman. Bryan will say Roman is THE Tribal Chief, THE Head of the Table, THE end all, be all and the best of the very best WRESTLERS on this planet! The Reignsing, Defending, Undisputed, Uncontroverted Universal Heavyweight Champion and THE main event of WrestleMania. Bryan accepts this offer. And if Bryan loses, then he swears, promises, that he will say all that and even shake Roman’s hand. Bryan will call Roman the Tribal Chief and the best he’s ever been in the ring with. But Bryan has a condition of his own: to make sure we get a proper result this time, make the match a STEEL CAGE MATCH. What does Heyman say?

Kayla loves that, that sounds awesome! What does Heyman? Bryan makes it a chant, “Steel Cage Match! Steel Cage Match!” Bryan will break the table if he has to! Oh no, Heyman is freezing up! Is Roman a coward?! Don’t say that on Talking Smack! Heyman blabbers that he can’t authorize the extra stipulations! But it’s just an itty bitty steel cage! That’s not itty bitty! It’s HUGE! “STEEL CAGE MATCH!” Kayla calls Heyman a chicken, bawk bawk! Wait, did a text come in? Bryan thinks Roman is a chicken~! But that text was FROM Roman, and the Steel Cage Match stipulation is on! Bryan smiles and tells Heyman that’s all he wanted to hear.

But Bryan has a message for Roman. Tell Roman, “I am no longer putting myself on the back burner. I am no longer putting other people first. I am going out to take what’s mine, and that’s the reign that I’ve had before CM Punk, and that’s the best damn wrestler in the world!” You heard it here first, folks! Bryan VS Jey, STEEL CAGE MATCH! If Bryan wins, he gets that Fastlane match for the Universal Champion! Heyman seethes as Kayla says bye and see you next week!


My Thoughts:

What a great episode for Talking Smack! Rollins was great, though he sure seems to be driving the point that he’s satirically portraying a certain side of the political spectrum. #FakeNews being used is a bit of a giveaway, but he and Cesaro are going to have a great match, and I like that Heyman of course ties in that Roman sees great things in his old frenemy. Maybe one day we get the Tribal Chief and Savior of SmackDown interacting directly. Bianca showing off the boots, jumping on the table, that was a lot of fun. She still said quite a bit of what she’s said before, but Bianca VS Sasha is still going to be a really good match.

Bryan had the best segment this week, he had passion in pointing out how he is the workhorse, Roman has (for story reasons) shifted to part-time, and Edge (though he was hurt for most of 2020) is basically the same. Setting up the Steel Cage Match here was great stuff, too, and I figured we were getting a rematch of Bryan VS Jey anyway. Upping the ante is great, but I would think at this point, that means Bryan wins the cage match and we see what happens at Fastlane. At the same time, Roman could easily interfere with a cage match because turns out, the cage doesn’t stop anyone from anything. We’ll have to wait and see, but I would hope Bryan overcomes the odds at least one more time.


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Mitchell’s Raw Talk Report! (2/22/21)

Raw Talk will be PHENOMENAL, Bro!

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WWE Raw Talk

Raw Talk has the Phenomenal, Ravishing Glow, Bro!

After the wins they got on Monday Night Raw, AJ Styles, Naomi & Lana, and even the NEW WWE United States Champion, are here for Raw Talk!

 

#CharTruth welcomes us back to the show!

Charly Caruso and R-Truth are still missing the WWE 24/7 Championship, but that’s what it is. There’s this empty space here on the table and Truth feels all off. He feels he can’t even focus on tonight’s business. Charly was hoping Truth had a trick up his sleeve but he just spoke to Bad Bunny and Damian Priest. Well DP is always with Bunny so he can’t do anything. It’s complicated. Of course. Truth vows to get his baby back, but Charly says overthinking can mess you up. Truth has to swoop in, but not too fast. If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. Okay but which is it he needs to do? Because he could go safe late or work earlier. What? Well, whatever.

But moving past the 24/7 title, let’s transition to the WWE World Championship! The Miz cashed in at Elimination Chamber, he is the new champion, but now he has a big battle on his hands. Bobby Lashley took down Braun Strowman and is going right after Miz next week! Charly felt Miz would cash in during the PPV kickoff show, but she didn’t think it’d go that way. And now, a little over 24 hours later, Miz feels the hurt. Truth says Lashley beat down Braun! Wait, everything has changed from then to now? Charly says this is mind blowing! So much can happen in the WWE even overnight. Truth says this just keeps reminding him of the missing 24/7 title.

Charly breaks it down: The Miz is world champion after cashing in the MITB contract. But he might just be champion for now, because Lashley is coming. Miz owed Lashley a debt, Lashley is going after the gold. Truth says Miz better be ready. Charly asks if Truth was looking forward to a Triple Threat. That would’ve been good. It’d be scary for Miz because it’s Lashley AND Strowman. People would get hurt there. But it’ll just be Miz VS Lashley for the title. Miz did say that he doesn’t want to be a transitional champion. What’s that mean? Well, sometimes you see a champion who holds a title a long time, while others simply pave the way for another champion. Oh, okay. Truth says he’s a transparent champion. Not the same…

Charly says if Miz is predicting his future, if things go his way, he will be a champion for a long time, but Lashley will give him a run for his money. But from the world champion to the United States Champion, and Charly makes sure Truth is okay talking about titles without his, it’s THE BRO!

Matt Riddle joins Raw Talk!

Truth is excited for Riddle and Charly congratulates the Original Bro for having the hat, the shirt and now the gold! Riddle tells CharTruth that last night was amazing, breath taking even! Keith Lee didn’t get to be part of things but John Morrison won his way in. That was a wrinkle in things, a new obstacle to overcome, but thankfully there was another person to pin because Riddle has to admit, he wouldn’t have been able to pin Bobby Lashley. “That guy is a beast!” Didn’t you see Lashley tear up McIntyre after their Triple Threat? And then tonight, destroys the Monster Among Men! Riddle’s been in the ring with Braun, that guy is no joke, so that says a lot for Lashley.

Charly asks what it feels like for Riddle to have overcome a behemoth? Riddle is all about beating behemoths, taking on big challenges. Riddle mentioned Air Bud, the dog that just wanted to play ball. Riddle is just the Bro that wanted to be US Champion! And now that he has “Travito,” lil’ Travis the eagle, it’s all good. Charly likes that name. Truth says #LilT-Fly! Tweet tweet! Riddle has his mascot, his belt, he’ll have that by his side every waking moment. Last night’s Knieval gear, he’ll get a dirt bike, take a jump after WWE’s The Bump, all sorts of stuff. This is his golden ticket!

How does it feel winning his first singles title in WWE? Personally, he started thinking it wasn’t going to happen. It was staggering, all those defeats. He beats Style in his debut but loses in the title match. The same for Lashley over and over. Riddle felt like Air Bud, being told, “No.” Even Keith Lee, a best bro, was saying Riddle couldn’t do it. But Riddle didn’t stop, and now you see it in his eyes! He is a champion! Riddle says the man doesn’t make the belt, the belt makes the man! Riddle took Lashley’s belt, and he beat the guy to beat! Truth is fired up for Riddle, and Riddle says that yeah, Truth doesn’t have his gold, but it’s just a matter of time! 24/7, 365! Truth is THE 24/7 man! BOOM!

Charly says #CharTruth is good but can they get an official Bro nickname? Riddle is feeling on the spot. He takes a day or so. Well Truth will give Riddle some time, then. Riddle doesn’t want to make something lackluster. Truth, we don’t need any lacklusterisms. Charly says the feat was remarkable, and Riddle says he has great feet. Riddle has the hardware, but does he feel after everything, his early momentum that stagnated, is the door open for him? Yes, especially after winning again tonight against a great opponent in Morrison. Beating Morrison clean with the Bro Derek, this is the start of a beautiful thing. Things are gonna change for Riddle. He’s winning gold, he might even get an investor for his Bro ideas! #Brogurt, #Bronuts, etc. MVP was a little meh on it, but the Hurt Business does know business. But Lashley is a savage, so…

Charly says Riddle is pretty savage. A savage stallion! He needs some pedicures and stuff, but he has been kicking butt. Charly says Riddle can go get that treatment, and wishes him and “Lil’ T” luck. And she never realized there was an eagle there. But now, it’s time to #FeeltheGlow!

Naomi and Lana join Raw Talk!

The #RavishingGlow are contenders for the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships and are building momentum while they wait for the match. There is great energy now! Lana isn’t crying tears, she’s smiling ear to ear! Naomi helped dry those tears by teaching her to believe in herself! But let’s talk about their title shot. They’re excited, dreams are coming true! To start this year, Lana set goals to become champions by the end of the year, and they are going to do that! They have a contender’s spot! Vision boards FTW! Every time, when Lana is on Raw Talk, they talk about manifesting dreams. Lana had a shot before, got hurt, but she’s back again for another shot!

Charly sees these two being an awesome championship team. They are unlike the other teams, not to take away from those other teams, but these two have a unique set of skills and a great look. Naomi says you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. Drinking? No, basketball! Naomi & Lana are a unique duo, a new duo, but not new to WWE. They need to believe in themselves or no one else will. They have confidence in themselves, and once Lana believes in the Ravishing Glow, tuning out the negativity, this deep friendship is going to propel them. So was this something under the table? Oh wait sorry to bring up tables, Lana.

Charly asks Lana if having a former champion in Naomi by her said help lift her up? Of course! Lana feels lucky to have a tag partner like Naomi. Lana has passion but she also has doubt. Nia, Shayna, they’re great but they are bullies. Naomi’s a two-time champion so she knows what to do. Charly knows Lana has been through a lot with Nia and Shayna, and Lana says she’s afraid, but she’ll run at her fears to face them head on. Naomi says there’s nothing to fear because Nia and Shayna are still human. “They bleed just like us! They get hurt just like us!” That means they can be beaten. They’ll slay the dragons! Exactly! Naomi says they aren’t losing teeth here!

Charly says Lana & Naomi can bring the heat, but just look at what Shayna & Nia did against Asuka and Charlotte. Truth asks if Lana’s gonna bring the glow, and she says she will. How does that work with the electric company? Leaving lights on wastes energy. No, it’s LED’s, Truth. Charly asks where they get inspiration for their gear? Naomi loves neon lights and futuristic things, and Lana is just ravishing. But Lana does say she gets fashion shows and comic books but what about Naomi? Naomi says it’s like Coachella, DJ light shows, that stuff. They can all go to a festival and dress up together one of these days! Charly can’t wait to see what their futures look like, and whenever the title match is, Lana and Naomi are going to train and be ready for anything!

And lastly, from positive energy to a phenomenal winner, it’s the Phenomenal One!

AJ Styles and Omos join Raw Talk!

Truth and Styles have known each other a long time and Truth doesn’t like Styles’ attitude. Styles says Truth is hugging too much. No, those were daps. No, they were hugs. Truth still can’t get “Omos” right. But how is Styles feeling? He won against Ricochet tonight but lost at Elimination Chamber. Ricochet is good, though. Styles says he did what he could at the PPV, chips fell where they may, he isn’t champion. But he was still here tonight. Where’s McIntyre? Jeff Hardy was here, Sheamus was here, even Randy Orton and Kofi Kingston were here. But where was McIntyre? Truth says he was busy. Yeah, because he got hurt! Got his feelings hurt, too! That’s why he’s not champion!

Truth says that’s not cool. Is Styles lying, though> Well Truth wasn’t looking for anyone but maybe he was here. Charly says McIntyre probably has a valid reason. Styles asks if Truth, after losing his title- Oh, we’re going there, huh? Well, Truth is here on the show. Would Styles wanted to see McIntyre after he beat Styles? That’s not the point, Styles is just saying McIntyre isn’t here. Styles is here, got a win, because he’s man enough. But who won’t be here for a few weeks will be Ricochet! Styles and Omos got him! Truth says that was too much, too. Truth is baffled that Omos did it! Well Styles calls that the #JKCB, the Jackknife Choke Bomb! Styles enjoyed that!

Omos asks Truth if he has something more to say about that. Truth asks if Styles is putting money in Omos’ pocket. Omos gets upset but Truth says this is what was on the paper! Styles has Omos cool down and Truth says he does NOT want none with Omos. The questions aren’t needed. Bye, questions! Styles likes that better. Omos pats Truth on the shoulder and Charly asks Styles what he wants to say tonight. Styles made his presence known in a big way. Then asks what’s next for them? Charly asks them that. “Sky is the limit!” Who knows what’s next? There’s nothing these two can’t do! Truth believes they’re right there. Charly does, too.

Is Truth in pain? Well he feels uncomfortable. It’s all good, though, they’ll ask the right questions. Charly says they can just wait and see what is in store. Styles asks where Truth got those pants. Are they custom or homemade cuz of the kids and stuff? Charly says no hard feelings, especially not from Omos. Truth says he’s not giving the eye or anything. Charly thanks us for tuning in, and on behalf of Truth, signs off.


My Thoughts:

A pretty good Raw Talk, went by pretty quickly, and just kinda touched on everything we saw tonight without really setting anything forward for next time. Riddle giving Lashley his props was pretty good, it helps them transition away from Riddle and Lashley now that Lashley is going after the world title. Lana & Naomi were okay tonight but it was hard for them to have anything new from previous times when their match on Raw was mostly filler. It seems most likely that their match for the Women’s Tag titles waits until Fastlane, after Nia & Shayna have also dealt with Dakota Kai & Raquel Gonzalez on NXT, 3/3/21.

Styles’ segment was good for bringing up McIntyre not being on Raw. While more McIntyre VS Styles would be great stuff, I hope McIntyre’s story stays to the title, going after Lashley or Miz after next week’s Raw. Styles and Omos, meanwhile, could go after Riddle’s US title, or just build momentum so that Styles can come back to the world title after Mania. Styles saying “Sky’s the limit” is basically summing up that they have all kinds of options, all of them phenomenal.


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