Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Post Show Analysis: Monday Night Raw 8-25-14

The goal is to supply readers with an alternative to the traditional review style. This column will be an overview of what happened rather than a blow-for-blow. It is intended for those who watched the show already. I would recommend reading Andy PG’s review if you have not watched the show.

Last weeks Raw provided us with a couple things to confabulate about: Paul Heyman cut another money promo. The WWE Champion will now carry around one title. And Dean Ambrose’s face was curb stomped into a stack of cinder blocks. Moreover, we found out later that Ambrose is missing and that Cena would invoke his rematch clause for the WWE title at Night of Champions.

The One to End the One:

Predictability and unpredictability are both important in wrestling. Predictability builds to unpredictably and vice-versa. They support and lean on one another, and would not exist without each other.  The Undertaker’s undefeated streak, for example, ceases to exist without predictability, and thus breaking it would have never seemed to be insurmountable. WWE authenticated something that was fake so much that it seemed to be unbreakable, and they did it so well that people their eyes were deceiving them when Lesnar broke it. It was an archetypal specimen of how the predicable can make the unpredictable seem impossible, and how momentous it can be when it happens as well.

Furthermore, wrestling is an eternal conflict between good vs. evil with protagonists and antagonists, and not much in between. Shades of gray writing complexes the characters and fans can become in a quandary on whom they should like or dislike, so the majority like being told whom they should like/dislike. In most cases, good should always overcome and prevail over evil. Besides, the average person wants to believe that good always conquers evil, and wrestling is a place where they can live out their credence.

The sole purpose of building up a dominant antagonist is to make a protagonist into a savior and hero. In WWE, the best place for the protagonist to give the villain the comeuppance he deserves is at Wrestlemania. It is a show where long feuds are paid off and is where the masses finally get what they want: good triumphing over evil. Therefore, we know when Brock Lesnar's reign of terror is going to end. However, we do not know who is he going to have to vanquish to get there. It is going to be interesting to see where it goes from here, to say in the least.

They're That Damn Good: 

Cena has transformed into a more sympathetic babyface, and it is mainly because of Heyman and Lesnar being exquisite heels. Heyman predicted Lesnar to beat the Undertaker and then give Cena the beating of his lifetime. Both of those hypothesizes were on point. Since he accurately two bold predictions, this means Cena is in the most danger he has ever been in yet.

What makes this story work is that Cena does not alter his modus operandi. He always wants to overcome obstacles, and his never-say-die attitude and resiliency have been his fortes that have allowed him to stay on top. However, he might have veered from being fearless to downright ignorant for evoking his rematch clause, although his tendencies are blinding him from even contemplating that. His biggest strengths for over a decade could become his biggest weaknesses, as his bravery and pride might lead to his biggest downfall ever.

Although it has mostly to do with the heels, this story-arc has been reinvigorating for him. For most of his time on top, he has been booked as an irreverent Superman that had no weaknesses nor feelings of unhappiness (and it got to a point where he would brush off losing his WWE title the following night as if it was nothing). Now –  in contrast to once being a cartoon character who had insufferably passive-aggressive and happy-go-lucky attitude – he is someone that is more relatable, and it has made him, as a whole, more tolerable. After all, a character is more humanized and interesting when it has weaknesses, as opposed to when it's invincible.

 Hate is a Strong Word:

A sense of hatred and well-defined roles are the two features a heated feud must have. Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins are both well-defined in their roles and their repugnance for one another is essentially unparalleled (well, at least in the no-blood era). Ambrose is a psychopathic antihero, and he is not about moral principles. He's just a resilient dude and does not care what he has to do to get revenge on Rollins  – and it is a big reason why the fans love him. Conversely, Rollins is a pusillanimous heel who hides behind the Authority and allows them to do most of his dirty work  – and it is a main reason the fans hate him. They are immaculate foils for the other.

Rollins’ promo kept the iron hot by progressing the story while Ambrose films his movie. They also smoothly transitioned the Rollins vs. Ambrose feud to a Reigns vs. Rollins feud. This is something Reigns’ character needed to do. After all, he lost some of his credibility and integrity for not seeking vengeance on the man who turned his back on him. Doing this feud now is better than never.

Swing and a Miss: 

The opening segment bombed. Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, and HBK were all sitting in the ring at an announce table to talk about the Lesnar vs Cena rematch. I must give them credit for at least trying something different, but nothing about this felt organic. Instead, it felt too forced, improvised and directionless. And rather than driving the purpose of the segment home, they were too busy talking over each other. Overall, this was a disorganized and muddled segment, and it did not effectually build up the match at all.

Who Booked This Shit? 

When the Bella Twins' feud started, we just knew bad promos and segments were inevitable. Nobody could have guessed it would be this bad, though. Neither one knows how to cut a convincing heartfelt promo nor how to act. So why the fuck did they do this segment? There are ways WWE could have protected them and not allowed them to expose their weak points. Indisputably, this was not one of them.

The dialog and story were both a mess, and so were their  promos and acting. They had no chemistry together as foes; they were not comfortable in their roles, and nothing they said felt realistic. Nikki’s promo had terrible segues and transitions, as it was long-winded and just meandered. She kept blabbering incessantly about nonsensical things like Brie marrying Daniel Bryan, stealing her boyfriends, and other clich├ęd reasons why a sister would hate the other. It's almost as if they googled "reasons a sister would hate other" and "hurtful things they would say", and then  inserted the top searches into this promo. Laughably, Nikki also did not know whether she should be looking into the camera or at Brie, and Brie’s crying and acting skills were as contrived as it gets.

The acting, talking, booking, and dialog were all cringeworthy and embarrassing to anyone who calls himself or herself a wrestling fan. This company does not deserve anyone’s 9.99 when they have segments like this on their flagship show. This was an ugly amalgam of Jerry Springer and the Jersey Shore: trashy people with no class fighting about nonsense.

This Is What It Has Come Down To:

The Rhodes Family used to be the most over tag team in the company. They were talented, had superb chemistry together, were sympathetic, and the fans wanted to rally behind them. In the midst of one of the worst WWE PPV's eras in the Fall of 2013, they were one of the few bright spots and stole most of the shows. But after they lost their titles, WWE seemed to just want to bury them. They gave them a losing streak gimmick, they turned Rhodes into Stardust, they had them wrestle Rybaxel a million times, and then they took them off TV. And, they still remained over in spite of that. Instead of WWE realizing they made a mistake, they decided tonight to turn them heel.

Both Goldust and Cody Rhodes are talented wrestlers. Therefore, they could be effective in their new roles given the opportunity. However, they were an incredibly over and sympathetic tag team who consistently delivered. The way they have been booked has been illogical from a business standpoint, ever since they lost the tag team titles.


Going Home: 

This was a completely phoned-in show. Since they are one month away from Night of Champions, they apparently saved all of the important stuff for the shows closer to the PPV. That is when good and long wrestling matches come in handy, though. As a whole, this Raw sucked. Just a lackluster reinforcing show, with boring matches, lots of filter, and one godawful segment. On the bright side of things, Night of Champions is shaping up to be a good-looking card on paper.

This is a work-in-process experiment, so leave any constructive feedback if you have any.



179 comments:

  1. CruelConnectionNumber2August 26, 2014 at 12:09 AM

    The one where Vince Russo does a sit down, out of character and "serious" talk with Tony Schiavone about WCW's future and suggests that Russo vs John Rocker at Starrcade 2000 in Long Island will be the match that puts WCW ahead of the WWF. This actually happened.

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  2. I always loved the spring break episodes of Nitro. The one in particular where Sting rappels from a helicopter was great.

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  3. The episode where Nash lawndarts Rey. Just because the rest of the show being a stitched-together mess made sense. It put home what a threat two men could be.

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  4. Is that Dennis Stamp reffing the Flair-Von Erich match?

    Personally I want to see the Nitro after Montreal

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  5. As someone who never watched ECW, and I say this with absolute admiration because I love a fantastic entrance, Sandman was just some drunk with a singapore cane, right? He's so sloppy just coming through the crowd, with his pants sliding down and the cigarette while drinking.


    I'm tempted to call him my favorite wrestler ever.

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  6. Crikey Mate Down Under AussieAugust 26, 2014 at 12:28 AM

    Can't really speak for others, but maybe instead of ambiguous headings just have which storyline you're talking about instead. Since they're in bold I could skip to Ambrose/Rollins, read your opinion on it, and move on.

    Nothing more to say about your writing, you're one of the best on the site.

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  7. "recapitulate"

    wut

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  8. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k_IXzU-lnLU

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  9. I never watched much Nitro or WCW in general so I don't have a lot of moments to think of.

    The two Nitro moments that stick out most to me were seeing Goldberg destroy Hogan and WCW replaying the DDP/Goldberg match.

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  10. - 1996 Disneyworld Tapings
    - New Blood Nitro
    - The final episode, just because I haven't seen it since it aired and the Internet version is low quality

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  11. Adam "Colorado" CurryAugust 26, 2014 at 1:04 AM

    "He beats the big guy with 3 superkicks..."


    (Turns on Raw, even though I was militantly WCW at the time)

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  12. i know I'm in the vast minority on this one but I don't really agree with the Bella promo hate. I think the program itself is weak and will only serve to put a spotlight on their weaknesses in the ring, but the build isn't too bad at all.


    Nikki's promo was a rambling, angry heel promo that really proved nothing, which is exactly how a good heel promo should work. She made no real arguments about why Brie was the horrible, self-centered sister she claimed, instead making outlandish statements about stolen boyfriends. For me it all worked: Nikki is a delusional heel who hates her sister because Brie didn't put Nikki first all the time.


    Brie's acting, meanwhile, leaves something to be desired, yeah, but she wasn't corpsing on screen so for wrestling that's a pass

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  13. I like your columns and opinions. "Their That Damn Good" though? Ouch.

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  14. Virgil's Gimmick TableAugust 26, 2014 at 1:56 AM

    I always loved how over the top they put Hall and Nash in the beginning. They had armed guards with GUNS to protect against these guys. How much more badass can you sell a wrestler as?

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  15. davidbonzaisaldanamontgomeryAugust 26, 2014 at 2:10 AM

    Opening segment was terrible; all three guys did as terrible a job winging it as the current roster as nothing of consequence or pop-worthy was said. And one had the feeling that Hulk and HBK really did not want to be sitting near each other.


    I like the various outcomes the Cena/Lesnar match could have (outside of a typical Cena victory), but honestly, to make this story work, they need Cena to go down again. A better fight, but another decisive victory for Lesnar. The best story here, since we've been making Rocky III comparisons from the start, is that Cena's chutzpah is admirable, but his reckless rush into a fight leads into another defeat, and they really need to build Cena into if he really *can* do this or maybe there is someone he can't beat (while recognizing his win at ER12 was very fluke-ish). Then while Lesnar is at home saving his appearances, you get Cena winning but not as dominant in wins as he would normally be till he gets that eye of the tiger in a tough match against a tough opponent (Bray would've been a good choice, but tonight's match exemplified who's on what level) and finally gets Brock on a Big Four PPV for the rubber match, fights him more intelligently and takes advantages of small windows of opportunities, pretty much the Brock/Eddie NWO2004 formula, instead of bumrushing and trying to trade with The Beast. He really has to shed the Superman persona for this to work, and I think it has to come with a loss at NOC.


    That said, I bet it will be #CENAWINSLOL

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  16. They've completely lost their mind if Cena wins. It would render the entire moot.

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  17. davidbonzaisaldanamontgomeryAugust 26, 2014 at 2:15 AM

    It wasn't working in the intended way for me, since you're taking the Obi-Wan "from a certain point of view". It wasn't Nikki cutting a my-actions-are-unjustified-but-I-believe-them heel promo, it was a Nikki-couldn't-put-a-coherent-sentence-together-if-you-put-the-cue-card-in-her-face that just exposed the fact these two idiots are getting too much air time in lieu of a lot of more talented ladies (esp. the ones who are ready down in NXT). The WWE really needed to take the Stacy Keibler approach with them, hide the weaknesses (wrestling, promos), emphasize the strengths (arm candy for a wrestler), but they're trying to turn this into some great feud and it's just fucking embarrassing.

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  18. davidbonzaisaldanamontgomeryAugust 26, 2014 at 2:16 AM

    But we were saying that very thing before their first match two years ago in Brock's return...

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  19. The PG era was the death knell for divas. Sable got over because she dressed in skimpy bikini's and showed off her tits. Same for Debra, Trish and Lita(before they learned to wrestle) Trish and Lita could dress slutty and get over before their eventual talent took over.

    Divas nowadays are expected to just get over on promos or hotness except in the PG environment they can't go further with the hotness aspect and this no one gives a shit.

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  20. I'm with you, I thought the segment did its job well, and you could tell by the way the crowd was responding. I didn't find anything wrong with Nikki's promo, and I'd bet many people shitting on it wax poetic about Owen's turn on Bret. Her reasons sounded similar to his, and her delivery was about as good.


    Brie sucked though.

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  21. "you could tell by the way the crowd was responding"

    Was that when they were dead quiet, chanting "Jerry" or "Divas Suck"?

    "I didn't find anything wrong with Nikki's promo"

    Even the fact that she build none of her points up and thus went on an incoherent tirade.

    "and I'd bet many people shitting on it wax poetic about Owen's turn on Bret. Her reasons sounded similar to his, and her delivery was about as good."


    No, just no. Owen knew how to deliver a promo and establish his reasons in a lucid manner. Owen just rolled in his because of you comparing his promo to Nikki's promo.

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  22. Honestly. Who DID he think he was?

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  23. Brock ended Undertaker's streak to begin his resurgence as an unstoppable beast. If he loses this time, what is there left for him to do to regain that momentum?

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  24. Owen was never a believable promo.

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  25. Do people even care about seeing a Cena redemption story anymore? They had the perfect chance to run this story right after the loss to the Rock at WM 28. Instead the result was Cena moping for 3 weeks, beating Brock, going back to normal Cena for the next several months, and then acting like he had a terrible year when the Rock returned.

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  26. Just because he wasn't a serious wrestler in WWF doesn't mean he was never a believable promo. He portrayed an amusing sleazeball, overdramatic character.

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  27. I knew it should read "There That Damn Good" but I didn't wanna be *that* guy.

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  28. kbwrestlingreviewsAugust 26, 2014 at 4:07 AM

    I don't think it's that big of a problem. I saw the one about hate being a strong word, didn't know what it meant, and looked down about an inch to see Rollins and Ambrose mentioned. It's not a huge issue.

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  29. MikeyMike, WitnessAugust 26, 2014 at 4:20 AM

    The spispde when Sting joins the Wolfpack and the episode where Goldberg wins the belt.

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  30. Mike Awesome debuting. I hadn't checked the rumors that day and was shocked as hell to see my favorite wrestler jumping ship. It truly was a surprise that day.

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  31. People saying "wow" does not mean they are ok with it.

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  32. I hope they are getting the rights to the Robin Hood TV series for that particular episode.

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  33. If Jack Swagger snaps and beats the unholy shit out of JBL, even *I* will become a fan.

    And since we're going to get this Bella horsecrap shoved down our throats whether we like it or not (like a HHH-Kevin Nash HITC match), we might as well enjoy just how mind numbingly bad Brie is. Surprisingly, Nikki wasn't completely terrible.

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  34. It's funny. I don't have a favorite Raw or Nitro episode. I guess cause wrestling is made up of disjointed segments instead of one bridging arc. Gun to my head it's the April 20, 1998 show with Goldberg winning the US title and Hogan beating Savage for the gold. That was probably more desperate than the show Goldberg beat Hogan.

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  35. It was so bad, even the TV wouldn't work.

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  36. No, if those segments were like The Room, Brie is Johnny to Nikki's Mark.

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  37. Yeah, so apparently we have Nikki who can act and we have Brie who can wrestle. Of course that's not saying much.

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  38. Hasn't that happen 3 times already?

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  39. It's so cute Andy has this..JBL is trying to get himself over thing instead of you know..Vince telling JBL do this. It's not as though there is a history here of if something bets shoved down your throat over and over...Vince is yelling it into a head set backstage.

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  40. I'm always that guy, brah.

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  41. The one where Hogan tells Kidman he couldn't draw a crowd headlining a flea market.

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  42. Fun fact: Since SummerSlam 2013, Cena has jobbed SIX times on PPV. 3 of those times, 100% clean (Daniel at SummerSlam 2013, Orton in the unification ladder match, Brock at this year's SummerSlam). That's a lot of jobs for the #1 face... but hey, STILL NOT GOOD ENOUGH! HE also needs to job to Wyatt and Cesaro also! When the hell did Hogan or Austin job clean 3 times in the same year? Did they have 3 clean jobs PERIOD during their time as top faces? (tons of run ins and crooked ref stuff, but 100% clean jobs? very rare).

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  43. Yeah and also, what's up with Cena's rectangular, thin head? I bet you he could fit that thing through prison bars.

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  44. That.... was unexpected.... Meh, screw it. upvote for originality.

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  45. So if something totally illogical, that has literally 0% chance of happening happens, then you'll take back your complaint? I guess your complaint will remain, then.

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  46. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 6:04 AM

    For everyone who's so sure (ROCKY 3!) that Lesnar is jobbing to Cena at NoC, lemme ask you this...
    If we're all assuming, as everyone is, that Cena has simply been plugged into what would have been Daniel Bryan's role every step of the way, then does that mean Daniel Bryan was going to win the title back a month after losing it?


    It's pretty clear they've had a long term plan in place for Brock. So did that plan involve Brock losing the title to Daniel Bryan in a rematch on a September PPV?

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  47. This reminds me of the sheer terror whenever HHH is in a big match where he should job. (hell, even the panic before WM 30.) the absolute worst I expect is some kind of DQ finish to give Cena a glimmer of hope, going into HITC where Brock beats him clean again.

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  48. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 6:07 AM

    Exactly. This Brock storyline is their big money angle for Wrestlemania, they're absolutely not just discarding it on a September PPV.

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  49. But but... ,HHH beat Booker T at Wm 19 URRR I mean Cena beat Brock by sheer fluke in 2012!!!

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  50. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 6:12 AM

    Hahaha, yeah I hated mid-2002 HHH as much as anyone--- pretty much stopped watching for a few years during his reign of terror period--- but holding onto the Booker T match is ridiculous. Who cares, Booker T fucking sucks.

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  51. Wait, you don't like "those people"?

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  52. Well, now I know which one of us is a card-carrying Klansman.

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  53. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 6:14 AM

    I mean, I would think Satan is.

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  54. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 6:14 AM

    Hey! Some of my best friends are WCW!

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  55. MikeyMike, WitnessAugust 26, 2014 at 6:16 AM

    Just like nobody can stop Michael Jordan? Nooooobody

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  56. Extant1979 - Ghetto SuperstarAugust 26, 2014 at 6:17 AM

    Night after Bash at the Beach 1996, the night after the creation of the nWo.


    Really any of the early Nitros are a lot of fun, I think it should be a good time.

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  57. i just love it when his hair turns into Woody Woodpecker after a couple minutes into the match. That look is the shit.

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  58. Zeb cut interesting and sometimes funny promos. We can't have somebody actually entertain us in the WWE!

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  59. with his size and wrestling background, it's amazing they haven't done more with him in the past 5 years. They've even given him mouthpieces in Vickie and Zeb, he would totally be believable as a Kurt Angle type wrestling machine.

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  60. Why do you hate all black people? Racist!

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  61. AverageJoeEverymanAugust 26, 2014 at 6:36 AM

    That would be awesome, go way over the top. Have Brie's room kept completely clean and as it was years ago, Nikki's room was turned into another bathroom, etc.

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  62. That Bella's segment was one of the hardest I've ever had to watch as a fan. Just downright insulting and not what anyone anywhere wants to see. I lose more and more faith in the future each week. It's sad really. Something I love to much being killed for me a little more each week. The worst part is that I imagine everyone in charge behind the scenes thinking, "you don't like it too bad! More Bella's! What this Bella thing isn't getting over? Well Bryan really isn't the draw we thought he was." The whole thing is just awful. Top to bottom some of the worst scripted programming I've ever seen.

    And seriously, go fuck yourself John Cena. The holding of the tiny towel is right up there with the dumbest things ever done in the history of the world. Really makes me sick.

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  63. A woman's only purpose is to be desired by men.

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  64. AverageJoeEverymanAugust 26, 2014 at 6:41 AM

    Showing more skin = good
    Her makeup now = terrybull

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  65. Tied: Luger racking Hogan for the title in Detroit and then the Goldberg goes through Hall and Hogan in the Georgia Dome. Epic epic wrestling.

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  66. Brock: "Hey fool! You ready for another beating? You shoulda never came back!"

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  67. AverageJoeEverymanAugust 26, 2014 at 6:44 AM

    Before that he was just a sloppy wrestler in a body-surfing suit. You need to see it if you havent.

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  68. Xavier Woods as Consequences Creed, or we complain online, and you tell us we are wrong for doing so!

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  69. Rocky 3 was a classic case of 50/50 booking.

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  70. Is that what YOUR boyfriend does? ZING!

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  71. MikeyMike, WitnessAugust 26, 2014 at 6:56 AM

    I think Hogan has since said that he put over people and mentioned Kidman.

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  72. Forget his head what was up with his tee shirt last night? My wife and I sat their with it paused pointing out everything wrong with it. The sleeves were oddly long and WAY tight but the rest was supper baggy and looked like it came right out of a box still having fold lines in it.

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  73. Again, what is the freaking deal with people on here and wrestler wardrobes? So "high school girl'esque".

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  74. Yea she looks weird with the makeup and such but to me they need to get her an acting coach. Yes I realize this could go for most of their "divas" but her facial expressions just grate me. I think she is talented in the ring and that match with Flair's kid was awesome but they have to get her in front of a mirror with a coach to work on her weird gestures.

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  75. That would be the smart thing the problem is it is Vince and it is Cena and any down turn in ratings or..Vince has a particularly unpleasant shit that morning and he could easily go back to Cena.



    I can't imagine the plan mapped out was for him to drop it back to Cena right away...that doesn't mean it won't happen next month.

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  76. I don't think Jeff Hardy is "getting" a Beyond the Ring. I thought those were just the DVD features ported to the Network? I don't know if they add anything to cover the time between the DVD release and the present day, but that seems especially unlikely in this case.

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  77. The company needs a head writer in charge of nothing but the mid card. It's such a mess right now. So you take Cesaro who was riding high...squash the hell out of him then give him a couple wins so he can fight for a title with....a guy that you squash and squash and squash until you realize you need a mid card baby face so you put a title on him. Meanwhile you have Jack no body cares about me Swagger barely in the mid card until you push the hell out of him, he gets over and you repeatedly job him to the same guy over and over having him let his country down.



    They need someone focused on these guys to actually build and develop them instead of throw them in a heap until you need someone and just grab at that pile randomly and say..sure he will do.

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  78. Let's face it though, someone going on 40 shouldn't be dressing like a nine-year-old.

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  79. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 7:14 AM

    Maybe you should sit the next play out

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  80. ......well..I wasn't going to say it...but those neon green shoe laces tots don't match the hogan red and yellow colors of the rest of his out fit.

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  81. how DARE they push a guy he doesn't want push!! How DARE they not consult with him beforehand! WWE NEEDS TO DIE!

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  82. I'm a WWE fan... AND I'M GOING TO KILL IT!!

    (Swivels chair around)

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  83. But if this is Rocky three that means we are going to have to see Cena's dad again...At least Brock will kill him.

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  84. Are you that guy who destroyed his room when Batista won the Rumble?

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  85. The last one.

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  86. AND ANYONE ON OPPOSING SPORTS TEAM! THEY ARE OF INFERIOR ABILITY AND CHARACTER!

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  87. The problem with all of this is that all it's going to do is lead to a shitty match b/t two characters that no one gives a rat's ass about. It's just a giant time waster.

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  88. Clubber was barely over and couldn't work anyway

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  89. I ordered one and I am going to take a screen cap of Cena with it on and photoshop it next to a picture of me with it on and play WHO WORE IT BETTER?

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  90. I wonder if the WWE superstars will wear white on the Raw after Labor Day, OMG, WTF, LOL!

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  91. He did get winded very early on. Couldn't work with the main eventers.

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  92. The one from the Russo era where there were a bunch of swerves and double turns.

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  93. Scott Hall showing up through the crowd giving his "you know who I am" speech. And the finale when Shane shows up.

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  94. It's no coincidence that Vince lost interest in Bo right as Labor Day approached.

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  95. LOL John Rocker... he would have fit in perfectly in wrestling

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  96. That was beyond stupid. He was a heel, then shifted to face with the John Rocker comments. Plus, the whole purpose of his sit down interviews made no sense at all. Didn't really matter by then as they were dying anyway, but yeah, this was pointless

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  97. It wasn't anything special from what I recall - the NWO singing O Canada in the right. WCW pretty much dropped the ball with Bret Hart from the start.

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  98. yeah, didn't Bo win a match yesterday? So is the "Vince doesn't care anymore" thing BS, while it was taken as a concrete fact, as usual?

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  99. he managed to beat Lesnar before. he even pointed that out himself.

    Cena might not be the "favorite" in their upcoming match. but he is far away from being the "underdog" as well.

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  100. uhm. not EVERYONE is okay with this!

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  101. Wait a minute...I don't remember that....are you serious? The WCW people were clueless.

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  102. you forget to add:

    "well, except on those occasions when it suits us. then they are the most important thing in the world!"

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  103. I can only speak for myself but: yes, I would.

    the same way I thought it was stupid to sabotage someone like Alberto Del Rio during his "main event run" - I am not really a fun of the guy, but if you want him to be perceived as a "top guy", don't book him look like an idiot.

    (the same could be said about dozen of other workers on their roster now)

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  104. I know! Next thing you know he'll be telling people on a message board to go back to picking cotton!

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  105. It just occurred to me that I DO remember the names of wrestling referees from thirty years ago, but I have no idea when anyone in my family has their birthday.


    My brain isn't very good at prioritizing information.

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  106. All of the rise of the nWo Nitros.


    Hall and Nash causing trouble was $$$ back in the day. Even if the nWo never would have happened, just having Hall and Nash around for a year would have been awesome.

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  107. "Predictability and unpredictability are both important in wrestling. Predictability builds to unpredictably and vice-versa."



    Well, that's a little more Zen than I expected on a wrestling blog!

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  108. If you told me the WWE had a 6-foot-6, 265-pound clean-cut blonde hair, blue-eyed babyface with a legitimate wrestling background I'd just assume he's in the middle of a long title reign.

    This is when 1992 WCW should exist as an option.

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  109. By most NXT promotion standards it was a success. Hell they lasted 60 weeks longer than Adam Rose.

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  110. Didn't see it but it sounds terrible

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  111. the 1992 WCW thing makes sense especially when you add Oklahoman to that resume.

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  112. I'm the same way with Nitro. I can remember moments here and moments there. But there isn't an episode where I remember two or more things that happened.

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  113. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 8:59 AM

    That saying should be on a T-shirt

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  114. I have a feeling this is going to be an unpopular opinion (not having read all the other comments so far) but I didn't mind Cena's performance tonight, nor did I mind him beating up the Wyatts. This is the first time in a very long time which I felt Cena actually takes his match and his situation seriously. He showed a lot more intensity in the ring, and I dont' believe he even used the Cena 5 MOVES OF DOOM. To me, it looked like he was preparing for a fight and that's a good thing.

    What of the Wyatts? Yes it looks bad for them, but maybe this will be a conduit for them to get more vicious and heinous. Bray's been getting by on being a good promo, but now he's run up against the barrier of "all talk, no action". Only time will tell on that, but I actually liked the direction of this whole angle.

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  115. The early nWo shows, my favorite time watching as a kid. Just to see how they hold up today, and for nostalgia.

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  116. Yeah, pretty much. I didn't realize how absolutely useless of a wrestler Sandman was before going through the ECW PPVs.

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  117. What would be awesome (but it will never happen) is if AJ started to incorporate Punk's moves into her moveset (maybe she does the Anaconda Vice or Go 2 Sleep, etc), gives a nod to the crowd that she's in on the chant, but then go about her business of beating people up.

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  118. Early Hollywood Hogan promos. By late 1997, they grew tiresome and repetitive. But in the months following Bash '96, they truly were groundbreaking. Seeing Hulk cut those promos was like watching Michael Jordan walk to midcourt of the United Center, grab the mic, and saying "Fuck you people. I don't need you. I play basketball for ME. Because I'm the greatest basketball player ever!"

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  119. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 9:10 AM

    If they wanted to, last night's segment could easily be something that propels the Wyatts to a new level, for sure. Like you said they acknowledge what happened and become that much more violent and evil. Start with using Chris Jericho as the first victim of the new ultra-violent Wyatt clan.


    The problem is I doubt WWE will acknowledge it and have the Wyatts build off last night, as it probably was only done with Cena's arc in mind.

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  120. It's simplistic AND drives the point home. I love it.

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  121. Good point, I guess it depends on what their future plans are for the Wyatts. IF they are interested in keeping them as upper card to main event level heels, they're gonna need something to make them a threat again after being railroaded by Cena. They have a golden opportunity, we'll see what they do with it....

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  122. Yeah, I didn't see it, but that sounds like an strong way to show a refocused Cena. I love when they build up a ppv match as being a huge deal. This sounds like a strong step in that direction and its from the pro wrestling 101 playbook.

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  123. Haha I want that one and the "Wake Me Up When This Hits ****1/2" t shirt someone else was talking about

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  124. Reminds me of one of the underrated moments of the Royal Rumble trainwreck. The crowd randomly chants "Y2J" and, if you look carefully, John Cena attempts the Walls of Jericho about five seconds later.

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  125. The one thing about jobbing the Wyatt's this much as opposed to the Shield or even a guy like Bryan when he was at a similar point in his career is that I don't think they can just their heat back as easily with a promo.

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  126. Exactly. Shouldn't the complainers be happy that Cena didn't just grin and say aw shucks? For once he sold the loss... and they're still complaining, because Cena was booked strong and serious. Oy vey...

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  127. Do you wonder what the general iwc reaction would have been if Daniel Bryan jobbed the wwe belt to Lesnar at summerslam as they originally planned?

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  128. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 9:37 AM

    Yeah, let's face it--- NOC is basically gonna be sold as a one match show, so they're doing all they can to build that one match.

    And you know what? I really wanna see that one match.

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  129. when cena said hes not there to win hes there to kick lesnars ass, that pretty much seals the deal that brock is gonna retain to me.

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  130. Yeah, that one time.

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  131. You can see both of those on youtube.

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  132. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 9:39 AM

    Well everyone would have assumed they were doing the Rocky 3 story and that Bryan was winning the belt back 4 weeks later, right? RIGHT?

    But no, that would have been bad. And honestly, watching Brock beat Bryan for 20 minutes and Bryan never get any offense in would have been really, really tough to watch. As opposed to watching it happen to Cena, which was fucking hilarious.

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  133. Yes all the Brock and Cena stuff sounded good here, I'm gonna go watch this match and they heyman/Brock stuff on YouTube

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  134. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 9:40 AM

    The Heyman/Brock video package was awesome. Brock is just so good at delivering these one liners that absolutely NOBODY else on the roster could get away with. I love how fucking different the show feels whenever he's onscreen.

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  135. Well to me this shows Cena is stepping up for a huge challenge, and it makes NOC seem like a mega super match

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  136. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 9:43 AM

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. So are we starting a T-shirt line now? Is that what's happening?

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  137. I think Bryan would have gotten that over and they would have given him a ton of offense to heat the crowd up more before he lost. I just hope they do get a match somewhere before either one leaves.

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  138. Worst_in_the_WorldAugust 26, 2014 at 9:45 AM

    Yeah, I think we get Brock/Bryan at the Rumble on the road to Romanmania.

    And since they already got the Brock squash out of their system with the Cena match, chances are it's an awesome back and forth that Bryan gets a ton of offense in.

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  139. Best Nitro: Look at this venue here

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  140. The Love-Matic Grampa!August 26, 2014 at 10:07 AM

    Titus O'Neil is built like latter-day Bobo Brazil now.

    That's all I got.

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  141. I'll echo the sentiments of a lot of others here: the early nWo stuff. That was before I started watching and while I've seen most or all of the seminal segments, I've never seen any of those Nitros intact.

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  142. So what are you saying?

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  143. Other than some of the Vince segments, the final Nitro was not that bad.

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  144. I've got the early ECW TV shows (Eastern, not Extreme), and I still have that Sandman promo video set to "Big Shot" stuck in my mind.

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  145. That one, and Curtis Hughes getting a promo set to "Whatta Man" are the two I remember best.

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  146. It's actually 'they're' guys. If you're going to fix grammar. Fix it.

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  147. Extant1979 - Ghetto SuperstarAugust 26, 2014 at 11:31 AM

    And soon you'll be able to see them in HD on the Network!

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  148. That's why I never understood exactly why Bischoff thought giving away Raw results was a good idea. If you tell people what's about to happen on the other show, *of course* those people are going to turn the channel, just out of curiosity.

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  149. I'd say you're brain is doing perfectly fine at prioritizing information. Of course, I'm probably the wrong guy to ask.


    I'm the same guy who only knows my fiancee's mom's birthday, because it happens to be a day before Hogan's.

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  150. "The goal is to supply readers with an alternative to the traditional review style. This column will be an overview of what happened rather than a blow-for-blow. It is intended for those who watched the show already"

    Wasn't there a really sexy dude who did a Raw review in this style about a year ago for awhile?
    In all seriousness, this was well done.

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  151. Kayfabe-wise, he definitely didn't have a good year.
    -Dealt with Kane targeting him.
    -Lost to The Rock.
    -Dealt with the boss dicking him around, which led to Big Show turning on him.
    -He became the first person to cash in MITB and not win the title.
    -Punk continued to get the better of him.
    -Only year since his rookie year that he didn't hold a single title the whole year.

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  152. Show back up and do Brock stuff.

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  153. I agree, the way this works for the Wyatts is if their ACTIONS prove this ass beating by Cena has really changed them into something more serious and violent. I'm not sure if they can even execute this in the new PG environment that they've created for themselves, but if they go on a violent rampage, then it works perfectly.

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  154. I agree, don't change it. No need to be that on the nose.

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  155. You bring up a good point, this probably could be a blog post from Scott just by itself. I think Brock brings "realness" to a show of outlandish craziness. Brock is a asshole, but he's a real asshole that generally backs up what he says he's going to do in the ring (even if he doesn't necessarily get the "W"). You believe he really has disdain for John Cena and what he stands for, and he cares about inflicting damage. That's the same thing Ambrose/Rollins has going, they have real hatred for each other that's conveyed well by both people so that I can get into the story. A lot of the storylines (and the wrestlers a lot of time) do a poor job of getting you to care, and that's what makes the show boring...at least IMO.

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  156. My only issue with that line of thinking is that they didn't go far enough. Yeah it's good that he's refocused and mad and ready to whip some ass but in actuality it should have been him beating the fuck out of Bray, throwing him into chairs, posts, stairs, tables, whatever until the family came out to save Bray. Not necessarily stop Cena but save Bray from getting killed. Instead it becomes a hokey six man with Show and Henry acting like pseudo hype men.

    If he's whipping Bray's ass to the point of no return and those four guys are needed to pull Cena off of him then I'm really feeling it.

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  157. I totally agree with you about the 6 man, it was completely unnecessary and kind of threw off the story of what they were trying to do IMO, but I "think" I get what they're trying to do so I looked past it. Maybe they were afraid of making Bray look like a total jobber, but like I said earlier, if they use this to refocus the Wyatts into something more violent and serious, everybody wins from this....of course this being WWE I doubt all this happens, but hey, maybe they'll surprise me!

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  158. I didn't watch Raw last night; when are the Nitros being added exactly?

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  159. I dont watch the current product. Thanks for letting me know that though

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  160. Agree 100%. Rather than Reigns being a "square peg", I thought this helped resolve a huge hanging thread where Ambrose wanted to destroy Rollins while Reigns was like "Whatever, I'll be over here trying to rise to the main event level."

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  161. Ah so you're just a troll. You should add that to your screen name or something to save people the trouble of reading your nonsense.

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  162. The Usos have zero connectivity with the audience. They have the chant, and the crowd shouts the response, because crowds are conditioned to do that. (See: Cesaro count, We the People, etc) But I wouldn't miss them at all if they were gone. I connected more with Too Cool than I do with the Usos.

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  163. Shy of bloodshed or a spike pile-driver (are piledrivers allowed again?) i don't really quite know how much more violent or dark the Wyatts can get.

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  164. I would have been fine with it. Would have made a lot of sense there, too.

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  165. And, as with Cena, there is ample reason for fans to be afraid that the WWE won't pay off a storyline logically when HHH is involved. With those two, it seems like logic be damned, they're going over. It's only been recently that the WWE has begun to disprove their own trope.

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  166. "Who's got a chance ... besides Cena?" If he beats Cena again, and we get fresh challengers, then "Who's got a chance?" becomes the intriguing question.

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  167. Actually now I'm contemplating screen printing a shirt that just says ****1/2. Can represent different things to different people, and implies I think highly of myself but recognize that I'm only human.

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