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Opinion

Andrew’s Top 5 Matches: Week Ending 5/16/2021

With the April vote finalized and my work schedule finally less hectic for me to sit down, let’s see what made the Top 5 from last week!

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With the April vote finalized and my work schedule finally less hectic for me to sit down, let’s see what made the Top 5 from last week!

Yeah, life gets annoying sometimes when you can’t find time to sit down and compile things. But we’re here, if not just a few days late! Firstly, let’s see what match won April!

MOTY Pool:

  • January: NJPW New Beginning Nagoya: NEVER Openweight Championship: Shingo Takagi (c) vs Hiroshi Tanahashi
  • February: NXT Vengeance Day: North American Championship: Johnny Gargano (c) vs Kushida
  • March: NJC 3.21.21: NJC Finals: Will Ospreay vs Shingo Takagi
  • April: NXT Stand & Deliver: UK Championship: Walter (c) vs Tommaso Ciampa

We’ve got a different start to this year, when so far the first four months are either NXT or NJPW. Should be interesting to see if any other companies can grab the affection of the voting public to win a month moving forward!

Now time for this week!

Quick Top 5:

  1. WrestleMania Backlash: Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs Cesaro
    Rating: **** ¼
  2. NXT: NXT Cruiserweight Championship 2 out of 3 Falls: Kushida (c) vs Santos Escobar
    Rating: ****
  3. AEW Dynamite: TNT Championship: Miro vs Darby Allin (c)
    Rating: *** ¾
  4. IMPACT Under Siege: #1 Contender: Chris Sabin vs Moose vs Matt Cardona vs Sami Callihan vs Trey Miguel vs Chris Bey
    Rating: *** ¾
  5. WrestleMania Backlash: WWE Championship: Braun Strowman vs Drew McIntyre vs Bobby Lashley (c)
    Rating: *** ¾

Honorable Mentions:

  • IMPACT Under Siege: X Division Championship: Josh Alexander (c) vs ELP
    Rating: *** ½
  • IMPACT Under Siege: FinJuice & Eddie Edwards vs Good Brothers & Kenny Omega
    Rating: *** ½
  • AEW Dynamite: AEW Tag Team Championships: SCU vs The Young Bucks (c)
    Rating: *** ½
  • NXT: NXT Women’s Championship: Raquel Gonzalez (c) vs Mercedes Martinez
    Rating: *** ¼
  • IMPACT Under Siege: XXXL vs Ace Austin & Madman Fulton vs Rohit Raju & Shera vs Petey Williams & TJP
    Rating: *** ¼
  • AEW Dynamite: IWGP US Championship: Jon Moxley (c) vs Yuji Nagata
    Rating: *** ¼
  • IMPACT!: ELP vs TJP vs Petey Williams vs Ace Austin vs Rohit Raju vs Acey Romero
    Rating: ***
  • SmackDown: Cesaro vs Jimmy Uso
    Rating: ***
  • WrestleMania Backlash: Raw Women’s Championship: Asuka vs Rhea Ripley (c) vs Charlotte Flair
    Rating: ***
  • NXT: MSK vs Breezango
    Rating: ***
  • NXT UK: Noam Dar vs Nathan Frazer
    Rating: ***

3t. WrestleMania Backlash: WWE Championship: Braun Strowman vs Drew McIntyre vs Bobby Lashley (c)

From AJ’s Review:

Lashley is trying to get Drew on his side to take down Braun Strowman and it works slightly as they hit a double suplex but we got three boy bois in there. They are going to dismantle and beat each other down. Lashley and McIntyre fight on the outside for a bit until Braun makes a massive save and takes down the two guys and takes it to Lashley inside. After Strowman beats down Lashley and Lashley tries to hit a Hurt Lock, Drew comes in and makes everything even to all again. The two former WWE Champions go to take apart Braun.

Each man gets heavy offense and finally with triple threat ruling, weapons are used and even the outside from them. Braun brings the steps in and once Braun is out of the picture, Drew actually threw Lashley into the LED Board. As Drew looks on from the carnage, Braun comes in and takes Drew down and brings him back to the ring for more damage. Braun does some massive damage to Drew until Braun goes to the well too many times with the splash.

After Drew hits a Claymore from reversing a Running Powerslam, Lashley returns to remove Drew and hits a Spear onto Braun for the win.

Winner: Lashley via Spear

 

3t. IMPACT Under Siege: #1 Contender: Chris Sabin vs Moose vs Matt Cardona vs Sami Callihan vs Trey Miguel vs Chris Bey

From My Results:

This was a great match with stellar pacing, solid in and out of the ring action. Bey and Trey had a few moments where they applied their high flying attacks together to try and even the playing field. It looked a little weird since I hate cooperative spots, but in a way it almost worked.

Cardona hit the Rough Ryder and the Broski Boot but he was protected in a lot of the turmoil. Trey and Bey were throwing their bodies at people but coming up a little short on exchanges. Sami had the match won, about to hit the Cactus Special, but the Good Brothers pull him out of the ring and wail on him to put an end to his aspirations.

Sabin hits Cradle Shock, but Moose pulls the referee out of the ring. Sabin and Moose come in, Moose clips Sabin, works on the notoriously injured leg. Flips Sabin inside out twice, then Lights Out and Moose wins!

Winner: Moose via Lights Out

 

3t. AEW Dynamite: TNT Championship: Miro vs Darby Allin (c)

From Mitchell’s Coverage:

Darby gets up and Miro offers him a free shot. Darby SLAPS Miro, Miro shoves him but runs into boots! Darby chop blocks a leg! Darby runs and rolls to get around to THROWBACK! And a cradle! TWO!! Miro swings, Darby ducks and dodges but runs into a pop-up, that he turns into another STUNNER!! Darby heads up top fast, for the COFFIN DROP into a waistlock?! GERMAN SUPLEX, but Darby lands on his feet! Miro runs but gets buckles, a roll up, TWO!! Darby almost gets Miro there, but he keeps moving! Darby headbutts low, hops on, YOSHITONIC!! Cover, TWO!! Miro survives but Darby is after the arm!

Miro endures the Fujiwara, fights up, and trips Darby, into GAME OVER!!!! Darby is OUT, Miro wins!!

Winner: Miro via Game Over

 

2. NXT: NXT Cruiserweight Championship 2 out of 3 Falls: Kushida (c) vs Santos Escobar

From Mitchell’s Coverage:

Escobar drags Kushida up into the fireman’s carry, but Kushida fights free! Escobar switches, Kushida blocks to sit, TWO, to a sunset! TWO, high stack! TWO, sunset, TWO! Prawn hold, TWO!!! Things speed up again, DOUBLE LARIATS take both men down!! “This is Awesome!” and still isn’t over yet! Escobar and Kushida slowly stir, Escobar is in a corner and Kushida runs in! Escobar blocks, puts Kushida up top and ENZIGURIS! Escobar climbs up again, fireman’s carries, fans anticipate what’s coming, and Kushida does, too! Kushida elbows free this time! Kushida has Escobar with a double wristlock, SUPER ARM-DRAG!! HOVERBOARD LOCK!!

Escobar endures, reaches, but Kushida drags him away from the ropes!! Kushida cranks as hard as he can but Escobar keeps fighting! ROPEBREAK! Kushida has the arm still, Escobar rams into buckles, and again! Kushida throws knees in return, and HAMMERLOCK SUPLEXES Escobar into buckles! Kushida drags Escobar back up, for another HAMMERLOCK SUPLEX! Bridging cover, Kushida wins!!!

Winner: Kushida via Hammerlock Suplex Hold

 

1. WrestleMania Backlash: Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs Cesaro

From AJ’s Review:

Cesaro gets an advantage and sees an opening, actually making the Tribal Chief stumbles and even fall with a Sharpshooter attempt, a suicide dive and crossbody to take down Roman. Roman keeps going to the arm of Cesaro though, cutting the power and even putting more fight to Cesaro and damaging his arm but Reigns keeps damaging it, even shit talking Daniel Bryan with the look at the hard cam. Roman now, getting his hubris going and costs him after a while as Cesaro gets back into it with Upperkicks and strikes, ignoring his arm damage as much as he can and deadlift suplexes Roman from the apron to the ring for a two.

Cesaro keeps going to his offense that he is used to and once he goes for the Neutralizer, his arms gives out and it’s back to Roman’s Empire but he took too much time. Roman gets caught though with the Uppercut and gets caught into a Sharpshooter and into a Crossface. Roman breaks out of the crossface and starts wailing on Cesaro, landing a sit out Powerbomb and continues the punching assault and gets his Guillotine in again and Cesaro tries to use his strength once again to break the Choke but to no avail as it’s locked back in for the end.

Winner: Roman via Guillotine

 

Thoughts:

Interesting week if I do say so myself. We have really solid matches but also matches that could be built upon. Especially Roman and Cesaro left enough in the tank to continue it into a bigger and better match if the machine allows it.

By default, I’d have to just follow my ratings and give Roman vs Cesaro my vote for the week. But I also wouldn’t be surprised if Escobar and Kushida pulled the upset since that felt a little more complete story wise.

Either way, cast your vote and I’ll hopefully be back on normal posting schedule next week!


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Opinion

AJ’s Controversial? Wrestling Opinions 10.12.21

AJ feels like spouting off about a few wrestling topics that bug him. How controversial are they though?

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As Eric Bischoff, President of WCW once said, Controversy Creates Cash…no I’m serious; it’s even the title of a book that he did. Everyone has their hot takes on professional wrestling and some are always wide eyed and kind of shocking to some. There are some of us that will have same opinions or chastise me on a show or an article maybe but hey, don’t hate the player, hate The Game.

Maybe there are some that the readers at home agree with or you want to also be the one to chastise me, @PhenomenalAJB on Twitter. This one is going to be fun!

#1- There are more things than just WWE/AEW and are better majority of the time

There are many people that will rant, rave and complain that the mainstream product is so bland and boring and the classic, “Who even watches this trash?” Whether you love the flippy dippy do’s like I don’t or long drawn out storylines that peter out very quickly because fans aren’t invested in a story or character. To those people, I will say something very bold, very confusing and very… very controversial…

THERE ARE OTHER COMPANIES YOU CAN WATCH ON VARIOUS PLATFORMS IN VARIOUS MEANS ON YOUR OWN TIME!

I don’t know how and I don’t know why that this is even a topic. “TNA has been dead for years” No it hasn’t. Pay $1 USD for Impact Plus on YouTube so you can watch it without commercials at 8:30 Eastern. “Two hours is too long!” NWA and MLW both go for an hour on their respective YouTube Channels as well and if you want to watch, you can hop in at any time. Everyone has something for everyone and you might find your new favorite wrestler in a matter of minutes into an episode. I would never have known who Eli Drake (now LA Knight on SmackDown Live), Alexander Hammerstone or even in the early stages of TNA Impact, AJ Styles, was! You can watch more than what is broadcasted on your TV. Is it easier? Of course but, there is so much more than just the popular option.


#2- Belt Collecting now is just redundant and moronic

Back in 1996, Ultimo Dragon famously has a picture of him holding TEN championships looking like an amazing superstar with amazing defenses. What people don’t know is, that was because eight championship belts were united in a tournament called “The J-Crown Championship” with the adage of ‘All or Nothing’. He lost them one by one but, it was to show that he was the best Junior Heavyweight (or Cruiserweight/Light Heavyweight) out of everyone in various promotions.

People after that really haven’t belt collected other than unifying championships to a grand caliber… then Austin Aries showed up. Aries kind of revised the gimmick and brought it back to light. Newer fans might have thought this was cool but older fans kind of groaned and grumbled. I was one of them but, nothing is original in anything anymore so it’s a fresher concept at the time back in 2018. He did surpass Ultimo with ELEVEN championships but it seemed everyone started doing it to an extent after. Matt Cardona, after being released from WWE, started doing it, getting up to six championships before dropping them. As of right now, not necessarily solo belt collecting, The Bloodline has a stranglehold of the World Championships for both Singles and Tag Teams, we had Becky Two Belts, Bayley wanted Dos Straps but nothing makes this worse than Kenny Omega’s stint as a belt collector.

I am not and will never be a Kenny Omega fan. I don’t see the appeal, I don’t see the amazement or anything like that out of him. I’m impressed he did three 35+ Minute IWGP Championship matches against Okada because that takes a lot of stamina to do so but, that’s about it. When he won the AEW Championship, alright. That’s fine. Nothing wrong with that since he helped build the company up. The Triple A Megas Championship… nothing too wrong here. I hate that he had five defenses in two years but he vacated it due to his injuries. It wasn’t until Don Callis and Omega popped into Impact and made the Hogan Era of TNA look like a dream… okay ALMOST but still. Kenny defeats Rich Swann and Moose in two different matches and has everyone else carry the belts while holding the AEW Championship. I understand heel tactics and mentality but at one point in an interview about going for the Impact Championship, he compared it to a common Comic Book and the AEW Championship as Superman Issue #1. I understand trying to be a heel in this story but you boost your clout, not rain on what you are going after. Heel or Face, belt collecting has just been a cluster within itself in the past four years and it honestly needs to stop.

#3- Overuse of Certain Moves

This one is a more recent problem that I have seen and no, I wish EC3 paid me to say this but it is true and very annoying to even bring up but here I am, wishing for Carter money and a fifth Rum & Coke…

Stop. Overusing. Moves. Because you think. They were cool.

If I had a shot for every time a Canadian Destroyer, Superkick, Suicide Dive, Avalanche (Insert High Spot here), Dual Dropkick spots where they cancel each other out or opposing members do back to back high spots on the prone partner spot… I would not have written this article due to death… even if it was water, I would have died due to drowning. They don’t look cool anymore when everyone does it. It’s bland. When Petey Williams wrestled in his last return to Impact, the Destroyer looked very… stale. Superkicks are the new DDT apparently (another Finisher turned common everyday move) and most people that do dives mess it up in some way shape or form whether it’s their feet get caught in the ropes, they didn’t get a full launch or they overshoot it. Having your own move special to you is difficult now but different wrestlers do their own styles or the pay homage to a family member or a wrestler that they interact with or ask permission… or asked to stop.

How’d you feel if you watched WCW and WWF in 1997 and saw DDP do the Diamond Cutter and HHH did the Pedigree Pandemonium and say they do the same move? That is exactly what happened too if Dallas didn’t ask Hunter to stop using it. We might not have the RKO out of nowhere or an iconic move that seldom bigger names use today.


That’s my list. I said before if you agree with my list and if you don’t and want to throw hate my way… @PCTunney is the hate mail account so enjoy!


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Opinion

AJ’s Thoughts: Five Potential Returns

With Trips in charge and already starting to bring back some people that didn’t work in Vince’s picture, AJ got an idea. Who else could we see on the horizon radar?

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With Trips in charge and already starting to bring back some people that didn’t work in Vince’s picture, AJ got an idea. Who else could we see on the horizon radar?

With everything going on with WWE, the one thing we have all been hyped about are all of these returns. Dakota Kai made her return at SummerSlam alongside Io and Bayley and now on last SmackDown, Karrion Kross and Scarlett made their returns in a big way against Drew McIntyre and showed the Hourglass to The Bloodline.

With all of that, there have been things in the pipeline saying Triple H’s foot isn’t off the pedal so these are 5 returns from either NXT, main roster or even Try-Outs that I would love to see happen with the new regime.

1. Johnny Gargano

Now this is a name that people have been saying, “Maybe Impact or MLW” but, what about a return? Gargano didn’t renew his contract, most likely to be with his family which is a valid and amazing reason, will never disrespect that. If he were to return, there would be a handful of great reasons. Maybe a singles run with the Intercontinental or United States but with Ciampa getting limelight in the main roster from RAW, what if we get a tag team reunion?

WWE is hurting for Tag Teams and what better than to scare off The Bloodline, loosen  the stranglehold of championships with some Do It Yourself action. DIY reunion could be amazing, especially with newer faces showing up to get championship aspirations like Kross and Ciampa. Want to break the hierarchy? Do It Yourself.

2. James Storm

This one is a little bit weird and off. On one hand, who doesn’t love the Tennessee Cowboy, Jimmy James Storm? On the other, he is 45 and getting some nagging injuries as of late. So why would I say Triple H should bring James Storm back and give him something for the main roster? One of the things I said for Gargano, we have a lack of something and The Usos might need to watch two things in the rearview.

Watch your Money and your Alcohol.

Beer Money showing up in WWE would be amazing in my personal opinion. The Bloodline jump Roode, someone in a hoodie or jacket comes up and jumps them to even the fight and as soon as one Uso remained in the ring, the figure goes down and the old stomping goes off and we hear “BEER…” and Roode looks around and gets hyped up and shouts, “…MONEY!”

3. Big Cass



Since his departure from WWE, he has done something I have said since they split him off from Enzo. Take him through the Kevin Nash School of How To Big Man. ROH and Impact are great examples that he actually cleaned up and worked on what he has to do to be good in the ring. He can work the microphone, he can work the ring so we got a new big boy to take on the WWE once again.

Now I could have said Enzo and Cass to rejoin but, I’m sure the antics of Enzo will get Cass in deep water along with the fact that I already made two tag team predictions, we don’t need another. Cass brings a lot to the table and was kind of unproven in WWE because he was just the big enforcer to the more charismatic Enzo. Give this man about six months in the ring and you have your next MASSIVE problem in the IC or US Championship scene or even more.

4. Bronson Reed



The big man from down under is a former NXT North American Champion. He looked to have a good push going with that championship but he got release. If you wonder where he went… he actually made a pit stop in Impact Wrestling as JONAH with the most fire theme song in recent history I swear… I will link the theme song and Trips… please. Get rights to this theme song. I will be a bigger Bronson Reed fan.

Bronson to me is the weird man in all of this but, I think with Triple H involved, he could get something going for him with a good singles champion run or a big threat to go through like a gatekeeper of sorts. Big boy with a great amount of athleticism? Can’t really hate on that considering the last time we saw athletic bigger people were Keith Lee and… what was that one guy? Sherman Tank with a Ferrari Engine…?

5. Bray Wyatt

And the last one is the obvious one in all of this. Yes… we have Judgment Day as the somewhat supernatural dark group but we know the true successor of the supernatural and that is “The Eater of Worlds”, “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt. This time around, I don’t think we will get the Jekyl and Hyde, Mister Rogers gimmick. I believe this time around we get full darkness and mayhem. We get the darkness and the theory of reverting back to your prime.

To make a refresher… Miz went back to being the cocky narcissist after fighting The Fiend. Finn turned back to the Prince and much more. With guys like Edge returning, maybe we see the return of the Heel Ultimate Opportunist, maybe a Fiend fight with AJ Styles to get the TN-AJ perhaps. Possibilities are endless and with a great mind like Wyatt for character and execution, I think Hunter will pick up the phone and Let Him In.

– There are clearly others that I could say, or maybe even didn’t think about, but hey, that’s the Chairshot way of Always Using Your Head. Those are just five returns that could happen and hopefully you read this before RAW or SmackDown and who knows if I get any of these right, maybe I missed an obvious one or maybe we get a giant signing that nobody thought possible. Let me and all of Chairshot know!


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