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The First Ever Year End Mitchell Medal Mania!

Let’s remember what was GOOD about 2020!



Mitchell Medal Mania Special

I’m practically GIVING these away! (Okay not really)

It’s as obvious as the sun in the sky that 2020 has been an awful year for many different reasons. But as the year is ending, I want us all to look back and remember the things that were actually GOOD! Specific to wrestling, of course.

As with when I gave the first ever “Mitchell Medal” to AEW for winning the first year of the Wednesday Night War, these medals aren’t outright for “The Best [category]” winner or even “The Worst [category]” winner here. These will be for the people, moments and more that were worth honoring. And speaking of, the first medal of Mitchell Medal Mania goes to the Wednesday Night War itself!

Mitchell Medal for Year-Defining Achievement:
The Wednesday Night War

Wednesday Night War Mitchell Medal

Yes, I’m just reusing the same image. The Wednesday Night War started in 2019 but the obvious majority of it was in 2020, and both NXT and AEW were doing incredible work the entire time because of it. AEW was mostly just trying to establish themselves in the world of wrestling, but they were also trying to stick it to WWE. There was counter programming from both sides in those attempts to outdo the other, and the real winners were all of us, the fans. The second year of the “war” is already through its first quarter, but both companies are definitely keeping their momentum going. I already can’t wait to give out another medal to year two’s winner.


Mitchell Medal for Innovation and Improvisation:
WWE Money in the Bank 2020

Mitchell Medal MITBOTR

Something that was also year-defining but in a horrible way was, of course, COVID-19. And many, many, many people were worried about our American wrestling companies continuing on to entertain us, or at least attempt to in some cases. But one thing that WWE definitely does well is pull off improvising.

Now, WrestleMania 36 did great in following the philosophy of, “The show must go on,” and had two nights capped off with great moments, including two different yet equally amazing cinematic matches. The Boneyard Match and the Firefly Fun House Match definitely deserve awards, but I’m giving one to MITB 2020 because how both the Men’s and Women’s MITB matches went to new levels by becoming a cinematic crossover extravaganza. There were gags, special guest appearances, and even a massive food fight. Things may have worked out very differently for each winner, such as Asuka immediately becoming Raw Women’s Champion from Becky Lynch’s maternity leave while Otis was slowly robbed of everything he had in WWE, but the event itself was good stuff, as I rated it 8.5 out of 10.


Mitchell Medal for Brutally Raising the Bar:
NXT UK Championship – WALTER VS Ilja Dragunov

Mitchell Medal NXT UK

The Moscow Madman promised us his match with the Ring General would “redefine violence,” and did it ever! It was certainly the best match Walter has had since joining NXT UK, the best match Dragunov had since joining NXT UK, probably the best match that title has seen in its short life. It was NXT UK’s perfect follow-up to NXT USA’s Halloween Havoc, because there was blood and bruising rarely seen, but not in such a way that it was outright horrifying or unsettling. It was good, old fashioned fighting, in the way that only pro-wrestling can do. Dragunov sold it like he actually needed medical attention afterwards, elevating both himself and Walter together in that match.

I still question if Walter retaining was the right move, but maybe it was to set Dragunov up for a heroic journey back up from the bottom to become the man that truly and definitively dethrones Walter from the top of the brand. He hadn’t been seen for over a month on the brand because to be honest, he believably could’ve been recovering that entire time. Then, his promo from December 17th was quite the surprise. A reinvented Dragunov? I can’t even fathom it.


Mitchell Medal for Historic Achievement:
Kota Ibushi

Mitchell Medal Kota Ibushi G1

As you can tell from the image, this is specifically for The Golden Star’s win at G1 Climax 30. He achieved two different accomplishments this year in regards to NJPW’s premier singles tournament: first, he went three in a row for G1 Climax finals appearances with 28, 29 and 30; second, he went back-to-back in winning the G1 Climax 30 Finals, as pictured on the medal. That is astounding, because it shows NJPW has acknowledged Ibushi’s incredible athletic talent.

Of course, Ibushi also made history this year at Power Struggle by being the first G1 Climax winner ever to lose his Right to Challenge contract. This was probably so that Ibushi wasn’t an invincible juggernaut going into WrestleKingdom 15, since World Tag League x Best of the Super Juniors was a long period of downtime for him. But at the same time, Tetsuya Naito used the fact that WK15 was another two-day event to give Ibushi his shot at the IWGP Heavyweight and Intercontinental Championships anyway. We’re just days away from that, so who knows if Ibushi wins the titles so that he gets his revenge on Jay White on January 5th. If he does, he might end up winning another Mitchell Medal for just general badass awesomeness.


Mitchell Medal for Unique Facial Expression:
Kenny Omega

Mitchell Medal Omega Face

Smug, vindicated, and perhaps a bit bored. These were perhaps just a few of the emotions on the face pictured there, from the night Kenny Omega CRUSHED Sonny Kiss in the opening round of the AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament. It is such a great expression, it needed to be celebrated and remembered. It and that first long winded introduction for Omega also signaled the beginning of The Cleaner returning to his true form, and how he would win the entire tournament to be Jon Moxley’s challenger, and the battle they had for AEW “Winter is Coming” that turned into a shocking title change and crossover project with Impact Wrestling! And the start of all that, in my mind, will be signified by that face right there.


Mitchell Medal for Perfect Pacing:
Hangman Adam Page

Mitchell Medal Hangman Page

No, “pacing” is not for how Hangman drinks. Though I’m sure real-life Adam Page drinks at a much more moderate and responsible rate than kayfabe Hangman does. I’m talking about the pacing of Hangman’s story ever since AEW started as a company. Honestly, this could even apply to Hangman’s entire career from the moment I first saw him in ROH as BJ Whitmer’s sidekick. Hangman has fought his way up from that, to establishing himself through NJPW and the Bullet Club, to joining The Elite and helping create AEW.

Then there’s basically everything he’s done in AEW. He battled Chris Jericho but lost in that inaugural championship match. He teamed with Omega out of neither of them having much, and turning it all into an AEW World Tag Team Championship reign, that then became a heart wrenching loss and break-up. That break-up then became a stellar 1v1 at Full Gear, which again, Omega won. And having it framed around how he drinks, without it being too real or depressing, has worked perfectly for him in drawing us fans in.

While Cody Rhodes was first to do a story of, “If I don’t win this world title now, I’ll never challenge for it!” far too early, and while the Young Bucks did their own as year two of AEW got started, Hangman Page is on the right track to do that story right. If he were to do go past AEW Revolution in February, and perhaps the third round of summer events in 2021, and then, for the third-ever AEW All Out, he says “If I don’t win this title now, I’m never challenging again,” THAT would be the perfect way to do it. His struggles have been THE perfectly executed, perfectly paced story telling I have seen perhaps ever.


Mitchell Medal for Breakout Badass:
Shotzi Blackheart

Mitchell Medal Shotzi is Badass

Shotzi Blackheart first showed up in NXT on January 15th in the Women’s Championship Contender Battle Royal, and immediately made an impression as she took it to established veterans and was the one to eliminate two-time NXT Women’s Champion, Shayna Baszler. Shotzi would then build momentum slowly but surely, got to have a very unique entrance riding in on the toy tank she’s pictured there with, and would get high profile rival after high profile rival. Also RIP Shotzi’s original tank, 1/29/2011/4/20. Her new tank from WarGames 2020 is awesome, though.

Shotzi also got another unique and impressive distinction by being the host of the first ever NXT Halloween Havoc! Shotzi killed it right down to her costumes, though I still wish she got to do more then. And it was the part she played in Candice LeRae’s story that night that then propelled them both into this year’s TakeOver: WarGames, which had a tank on the logo because it was all about Shotzi! Shotzi being the team captain of a team that had Ember Moon, Rhea Ripley and Io Shirai, that itself is huge!

The match was great stuff, but sadly Team Shotzi didn’t win. Perhaps Shotzi would have become too powerful if her team won in Shotzi’s first WarGames, even though Rhea and Candice won their match when it was just two of them. But with 2021 literally just a day away, Shotzi is going to make it her year.


Mitchell Medal for Masterful Storytelling:
The “Tribal Chief” Roman Reigns story

Mitchell Medal Tribal Chief

I for one definitely acknowledged Roman Reigns as the Tribal Chief, the head of the table, etc. for what he’s been doing since he returned at SummerSlam this year. He did as his first new shirt said, “Wreck Everyone & Leave” in a very Stone Cold way, but then immediately started morphing his character by revealing he had Paul Heyman as his “Special Counsel.” Then adding in Jey Uso, who became singles wrestler because Jimmy was injured, things took on amazing new depth we hadn’t yet seen from either of them. Clash of Champions, Hell in a Cell, and even Survivor Series all had outstanding builds and incredible matches because of both Roman, Jey, and Drew McIntyre.

Jey increased his own character development after Survivor Series, that brutality against Otis and Kevin Owens, great stuff. And then we got Roman VS Kevin at TLC in a TLC match, and they did a great job teasing us into thinking Kevin was going to win, because he was so close to getting the belt with both hands at one point. Honestly, how much better could they have done? Everything about this story has been superb, and you’d have to be a complete anti-WWE type to not like this.


Another Mitchell Medal for Masterful Storytelling:
Bayley and Sasha Banks

Mitchell Medal Bayley and Banks

This one should be as obvious, maybe even more so, than the Reigns story. Bayley and Sasha were always on again, off again frenemies, and as you can see in the picture, they reunited shortly after WrestleMania 36 with the mission to win all of the gold in WWE. They succeeded short of one of them having the NXT Women’s Championship (and technically NXT UK’s title would be on the table, too), and then they found a way to steer things back to them being enemies, but with Bayley going Heel instead of Sasha and having a great Hell in a Cell match in which Sasha became the third-ever Women’s Grand Slam Champion. Whether fighting against each other or together, Bayley and Sasha are definitely going down as two of the greatest women in this generation, and they’re still in their primes.


Mitchell Medal for Incredible Musical Promo:
Chris Jericho & MJF, “Me and My Shadow”

Mitchell Medal Y2J MJF

The Dinner Debonair did not disappoint! In fact, it blew all expectations out of the water and is the most unique segment this year and from the last several years. And “musical” isn’t just for the fact they were singing. It was like something out of a musical, as in a play or film with singing and dancing. Chris Jericho and Maxwell Jacob Friedman are both charismatic and entertaining, it was only natural that they’d interact in AEW, but their entire story together has continued to go above and beyond. But specifically, this segment was like the catalyst that really got things going, and there’s just not enough I can really say about it.


Mitchell Medal for Legacy and Longevity:
Chris Jericho

Mitchell Medal: Chris Jericho

And of course, Jericho himself gets a medal all his own for what he’s done in AEW. That picture right there is of course from the hilarious moment during his feud with Orange Cassidy where actual orange juice is dropped on him, The Inner Circle, and Jericho’s supposed $7000 white suit jacket. While Jericho continued to transform his character by becoming a team leader, while he continued to be hilariously obnoxious, and while he reveled in fans singing along with his theme song, Judas, Jericho also made sure to do the best thing any 30 year veteran of pro-wrestling could do, and that is put the new generation over.

He and Jungle Boy went to the end of a 15 minute time limit. He of course founded the Inner Circle, the avenue upon which newer stars like Sammy Guevara, Santana and Ortiz could shine, and of course he put Cassidy over in their eventual blow-off, the first-ever Mimosa Mayhem match. And of course, Jericho’s work with MJF has been incredible, as the previous medal indicates. Jericho is perhaps the actual GOAT of his generation because he’s stuck with pro-wrestling, he’s never gotten stale, and he’s apparently modest enough behind the scenes to know who the gems of this generation are and shines them up even more. Jericho wanted fans to say it all along, and fans have been saying it more lately, so I’ll say it, too: #ThankYouJericho, here’s a PNG file I made, hope you like it. Actually, he kinda looks like the MGM lion, doesn’t he?


Another Mitchell Medal for Legacy and Longevity:
The Undertaker

Mitchell Medal Thank You Taker

While The Undertaker didn’t do a lot this year, I did mention the Boneyard Match being a great cinematic match for WWE, and a great farewell for him as far as “in-ring” action. This year was also his 30th anniversary, as the WWE made sure we understood with Survivor Series 2020. If that tagline of #TheBestoftheBest was for nothing else, it was for him, as we all bid him a #FinalFarewell on the exact night that was his 30th anniversary. Taker’s legacy, 11/22/1990 to 11/22/2020, is filled with memorable moment after memorable moment, and I think those fans who have only been aware of Taker for the last 5 years can understand how momentous that final night was. Though it was said so much leading up to that night, let’s say it again truly one last time: #ThankYouTaker.


Mitchell Medal for Someone We All Miss:
Jon Huber, aka Brodie Lee, aka Luke Harper

Mitchell Medal Brodie

There has already been a great outpouring from fans, wrestlers and promotions for a man we lost over the holidays and far, far too soon. It only made sense to honor him further with the last but far from least Mitchell Medal. A great wrestler, a great presence backstage and a great man up and down, with AEW even changing their year-end plans to give him a proper tribute show where kayfabe was put aside for just a lot of fun matches best featuring those who knew him, worked with him, and loved him. On behalf of the fans, including us fans here at The Chairshot, #ThankYouBrodie.


So there you have it. A baker’s dozen of medals for 2020, a great start to what might become a tradition, though maybe not yearly. It might become even more frequent that that if more awesome things happen and I just can’t wait to talk about them for the whole year. Only time will tell. I hope you guys like the ones given out here, and feel free to comment about wrestlers, moments, etc. that happened in 2020 that you felt should’ve been recognized.

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King’s WrestleMania Rewind: Stone Cold VS. Scott Hall (WrestleMania X8)

Chris King is back with another WrestleMania Rewind, looking at the NWO’s Scott Hall battling Stone Cold Steve Austin at WWE WrestleMania X8 from Toronto!



Steve Austin Scott Hall WrestleMania X8

Chris King is back with another WrestleMania Rewind, looking at the NWO’s Scott Hall battling Stone Cold Steve Austin at WWE WrestleMania X8 from Toronto!

Chris King is back this week with another edition of WrestleMania Rewind, where he is rewatching all the past Mania matches and feuds. This week you’re in for a treat as we look back at ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin vs. Scott Hall at WrestleMania X8.

In late 2001, Vince McMahon bought out his competition WCW and acquired the rights to a plethora of talent including Booker T, Eddie Guerrero, Chris Benoit, and the iconic trio known as NWO. Hulk Hogan; Kevin Nash, and Scott Hall were hell raisers, and what better way to make a name for yourself than take out the two top superstars in the WWE The Rock, and Stone Cold?

The NWO cost Austin his chance at becoming the Undisputed Champion at No Way Out during his match with Chris Jericho. Adding insult to injury, the NWO spray-painted ‘The Texas Rattlesnake’ with their brand logo just like they did in WCW. As you can imagine, Austin was pissed and out for revenge against the group and primarily Scott Hall.

Hall would challenge Stone Cold to a match at WrestleMania 18. Both superstars beat the living hell out of each other leading up to this highly-anticipated match for who runs the WWE.

The glass broke and Stone Cold made his iconic entrance, and black and white NWO covered Halls’ entrance alongside Kevin Nash. With the odds stacked against ‘The Toughest S.O.B’ could Austin or NWO prove their dominance? Sadly the NWO  broke up that very night when Hulk Hogan came to the aid of his adversary The Rock after their ‘iconic’ dream match. Stone Cold would ensure the victory with the Stunner. Hall would perform an Oscar-worthy sell over the finisher.

What a time to be a wrestling fan in the 2000s when nothing was impossible for WWE. Who would’ve thought WCW would go out of business and Hogan would make his long-awaited return to WWE?

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King’s WrestleMania Rewind: Seth Rollins vs. Kevin Owens (WWE WrestleMania 36)

Chris King takes a look at the most underrated WWE WrestleMania matches, and starts off with Seth Rollins battling Kevin Owens at WrestleMania 36!



WWE WrestleMania 36 Kevin Owens Seth Rollins

Chris King takes a look at the most underrated WWE WrestleMania matches, and starts off with Seth Rollins battling Kevin Owens in the WWE Performance Center at WrestleMania 36!

Chris King is starting a new series heading into WrestleMania season dubbed WrestleMania Rewind. Each week he’ll be going back and sharing his insight over underrated matches at the Show of Shows. First up, is Kevin Owens vs. “The Monday Night Messiah” Seth Rollins at WrestleMania 36.

At the 2019 edition of Survivor Series, Rollins sacrificed himself during the men’s traditional match allowing SmackDown to ultimately gain the victory. The following night the self-proclaimed Messiah, berated the whole roster but KO was not having any part of it. Owens quickly became a huge barrier in Rollins’ cause for the greater good. The Authors of Pain attacked Owens with Rollins’ character in question.

Owens finally had enough of his rival’s mind games and torment and challenged Rollins to a match on the Grandest Stage Of Them All. Rollins mockingly accepted his challenge and the match was made official for night one of WrestleMania. Owens came out of the gate beating the holy hell out of the Monday Night Messiah trying to achieve his long-awaited moment at Mania but, Rollins tried to steal a disqualification victory by using the ring bell.

Owens hellbent on revenge provoked Rollins into turning their encounter into a no-disqualification contest where the fight could be taken all over the empty arena. The highlight of the match, was when KO used the WrestleMania sign to deliver a thunderous senton bomb through the announce table. Owens would secure the victory with a Stunner in an incredible match. Despite having no crowd during the pandemic era, both KO and Rollins put on an intense performance under the brightest lights.

In my personal opinion, this was a great feud that helped both superstars in their transformation as compelling characters for years to come.

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