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MMA Fight Week Preview (plea for a plug)


Hey Scott, you have helped me in the past when you linked my CM Punk article. I was wondering (if time permits) if you could do the same for my fight week preview. While this weekend is not going to move the needle, it is a stacked lineup. It's been a while since we've seen an event that is a real value as far as start to finish.

I personally find the fights (and the sport) more compelling when I take a little time to study the technical aspects. I've written this article to be a user friendly overview, but I've included links throughout that allow the reader to read more into the subject (articles written by people smarter than me).

I also write as a lifelong pro wrestling fan, and a consumer who understands that sometimes the UFC company line is bullshit.

If you give me a plug, I'd appreciate it. 

​I was actually debating whether to fling my $10 a month, monkey-poo style, at either NJ World or Fight Pass, and went with NJ because I just can't see myself sitting through prelims and at least NJ World gives you the whole show live.  

Anyway, yeah, I'm looking forward to Overeem v. Nelson, actually.  Also, Rousey's buyrate numbers keep going up, with Dave now saying they're above Silva v. Diaz, which would put it probably over 800,000 buys by my feeble maths.  Go Ronda!  ​

Comments

  1. This emailer should come forward to be shamed in public. 1. Bigelow didn't commit suicide. 2. He saved 3 kids' lives by rescuing them from a burning building. 3. You're a dick.

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  2. NJ World seems like a solid investment. The benefit of Fight Pass is that they now have all of those old Pancrase shows. If you are so inclined, you can basically watch the birth of the sport in chronological order.

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  3. Shawn/Diesel is an okay-to-good match in a vacuum, but Shawn actively sandbagging Diesel and sabotaging the #1 babyface isn't something I can easily forgive. I don't care if Shawn's workrate rulz and Diesel sux--the point was to get Diesel over as the top star and Shawn completely fucked that over (and don't tell me there wasn't money in running that match on PPV at least once more before you turn Shawn babyface).

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  4. Also it's not like LT had these Jimmy Savile-type revelations after the fact. He was a known scumbag when he was still an active player.

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  5. I still think that the 2010-2011 year (introduced and concluded by Mania 26 and Mania 27) was one of the worst in history. Like, as bad as 2014 was at least we have Rusev and Rollins doing awesome work and being treated well enough.

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  6. Bam Bam was awesome, I wish he had received a big push after main eventing 11 and carrying LT to a decent match.

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  7. Is that Bam Bam fire story true?

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  8. I wonder if it wouldn't have been a better idea to have Bret-Diesel at WM instead of the rumble. Have it a face vs face match where Diesel goes over after a hard-fought battle, let the crowd back whoever it likes. If nothing else, at least both guys will look good when it's over.

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  9. Wrestlemania 27 has a match you rated ****3/4. The best match at Wrestlemania 11 you have at ***1/2.


    Owen/Yoko v. The Gunns is awesome

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  10. I think the Bret v. Owen blowoff should've been at Mania.

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  11. If it wasn't, you'd probably woulda heard about it being a lie.

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  12. I would have gone with Bret/Diesel at WM11 too because Bret was the only guy in the company with main event credibility at the time and Shawn only started to get over at a main event level after WM anyway.

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  13. That would have worked too. While I'm at it, they could have done a lot worse than have Blayze regain the women's title from Nakano on this show. Their matches were always good.

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  14. I'm not saying it's not true, I just don't remember ever seeing any news stories about it or anything when it would've happened.


    Anyone with a direct line to old Observers true.


    But agreed, this e-mailer's a dick.

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  15. It's certainly a contender. Especially sad is the way they royally screwed up the could've-been-huge Nexus angle.

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  16. You can't watch a Lawrence Taylor match because he banged a 16-year-old?

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  17. Charismatic eNegro Jef VinsonMarch 13, 2015 at 9:33 PM

    People don't mention Wrestlemania 11 being the worst the same way MST3K never used "Plan 9 From Outer Space". It was pretty well known that it sucked so it wasn't necessary to talk about it.

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  18. I didn't realize Bam Bam was a suicide until recently. I think it got glossed over at the time.

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  19. As I noted in the other thread, I can't call 27 the worst because HHH-Taker is great. My vote would be either 4 or 5.

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  20. 27 was so much fucking better than 15 or 11 or 9 or 6 or 4 or 2. You had fucking Edge's retirement match, which was pretty damn good. Punk/Orton was a shoe-horned feud, but the match was great. Rey/Cody was ALSO GOOD. Cole/Lawler was like a surreal piece of art. Or shit. I guess it depends where you stand much like Triple H/Undertaker, which is polarizing, but c'mon people. it's better than anything from WM 15 or 11 or 9 or 6 or 4 or 2!


    27 is not even in the same realm of the worst wrestlemanias.



    but Miz/Cena was the shits.

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  21. Orton v. Punk is fantastic too

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  22. Its baffling. And it pisses me off!

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  23. Am I missing something? I always thought WM9 was the hands down worst ever. I mean aside from the cool location- is there anything good about that show?

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  24. Fat, Ugly Inner-City SweathogMarch 13, 2015 at 10:03 PM

    If they would have just had a little patience, the Diesel thing could have come off like a bigger deal AND given them a better Wrestlemania. Just have Bret win the title back at Royal Rumble '95 and give Diesel the most dominant Rumble performance ever. HBK going from #1 to last eliminated would make him look great and foreshadow his Rumble win the next year. Do Bret vs. Diesel for the title at Mania. Bret could give him a better match, plus a bigger title win than the Backlund squash that nobody saw happen anyway. Then do Razor vs. HBK in a Ladder re-match for the IC title.

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  25. Personally, I've always found that match massively overrated so the show sucks even worse for me.

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  26. Michaels-Tatanka and Steiners-Shrinkers are both good. It's not much, but better than nothing.

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  27. Even some of the other matches have some decent action, but the finishes were SO awful--the Steiners/'shrinkers match and maybe the Double-Doink (for being such a clever swerve) were the only satisfying endings on the show.

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  28. It was really, really dumb to stick Diesel with Bret as his first PPV challenger. REALLY dumb. It's easy to make fun of Nash but goddamn, did Hogan have to come back to MSG in February '84 and defend against Bruno?

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  29. Problem with that is that it kills the rest of 95 using those two matches at WM.

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  30. Ok so I had to Wiki it and I guess not, just heart failure due to drugs. The emailer must have gotten his Triad members mixed up. I think I recently read something else that said it was a suicide too, some random listicle. People be hating on Bammer.

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  31. I would have had Shawn refocus on his singles career after Summerslam, even implying he cost Diesel the IC title on purpose to get things back to being about him. With Diesel's help he gets a title shot where Diesel blatantly helps him beat Bret. Shawn acknowledges none of this acting like he did it all on his own. Diesel has enough, turns on Shawn, wins the Rumble in a dominant performance and wins the title at WM. Blow-off Bret/Owen for good. Undertaker squashes Backlund, Razor/Jarrett's the same. Do LT/Bam Bam because that one's set in stone. Find something for Luger/Bulldog to do.

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  32. They were supposed to main event In Your House. Vince pushed for the Superkick near fall spot to set up a rematch but after the reaction It got turned Shawn face. That's why he was off tv for six weeks, no real plan for him.

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  33. Fat, Ugly Inner-City SweathogMarch 13, 2015 at 11:01 PM

    Nah, they would have been fine. A Diesel-Bret re-match at Survivor Series still works just fine.

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  34. It IS dumb, no argument there. Trouble is, I can't really think who else there was. The roster was REALLY thin.

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  35. I thought it was a heart attack?

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  36. A match? Don't you mean THE match?

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  37. Instead it was on a random episode of Action Zone around the time of WM 11.

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  38. Salt N Pepa = Only rap performance that I ever liked in the WWE

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  39. Still got to go with 11. Shawn/Diesel was ok but eclipsed by their IYH match in 96. Everything else was junk. At least 27 had HHH/Taker.

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  40. Punk lost every PPV match.


    Bryan was faffing about with the US title.


    Sheamus became a giant pussy and feuding with...


    Babyface Randy Orton.


    The complete botch of the Nexus.


    The complete botch of John Morrison, made even worse by...


    Top Heel Miz.


    John Cena RISES ABOVE job loss and feuds with a guy who hasn't wrestled in 7 years.


    Roster was bloated with bland losers because of the Nexus fuck-up. So nobody had any direction and the important people got into masturbatory feuds with "the real stars" (Triple H might've beaten Sheamus at WM26, but at least it was an established guy feuding with an upstart).


    2011 had the Summer of Punk. 2012 had the Rise of Bryan Mark. 1 and Punk's Mid-Card WWE Title run (there were problems with it, but it was still pretty damn fun). 2010 was a load of crap.

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  41. This reminded me... weren't there multiple Raw segments for a while where Nexus would corner WWE Champion Sheamus backstage and he would run away to Cena's locker room and beg him for protection?

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  42. The only Wrestlemania to feature three WWF Champions!

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  43. "You can't watch a Lawrence Taylor match because he raped a 16-year-old?"

    FIFY

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  44. What's so great about 2?

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  45. Cena had some awesome raps back in the day.

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  46. He only came to Cena once but he ran from them a couple times.

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  47. "In discussions of the worst Mania ever, no one mentions WM 11"

    what? it's almost ALWAYS mentioned when there's a discussion about the worst Manias.

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  48. "[...] but Shawn actively sandbagging Diesel [...]"


    I get the idea of Michaels "upstaging" him but considering their real life friendship I seriously doubt Michaels had the intention of purposely "sabotaging" Diesel.

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  49. same here. to me the best match from 27 is Punk vs. Orton.

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  50. since I'm "feeling" Taker/Trips II, this is the best match from 27 for me.

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  51. 2014 is a lot better than many give it credit for. to me, almost half of the year had stuff I loved (Shield vs. Evolution, Ambrose vs. Rollins etc.) - there's several years that don't have that going for them.

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  52. I think both II and IX are worse than XI.

    II: Hogan vs Bundy main event. Absolutely nothing to get excited about there. It's just Hogan against the big fat monster of the week. Seems more like something that should've headlined Saturday Night Main Event. Also, a worked boxing match between Roddy Piper and Mr T and a battle royale featuring both wrestlers and football players? Jesus, who booked this crap? And splitting the card between three different cities accomplished what precisely?

    IX: Bret Hart vs Yokozuna really didn't have much lustre as a main event, but I could've lived with it if Hogan the big selfish poser didn't come in and steal all the thunder at the end with his preposterous title win. I remember being excited to see Lex Luger vs Mr Perfect at the time as Luger was this big star coming in from WCW and I was a big mark for Mr Perfect, but the match ended up sucking a dick. The Steiners vs Heashrinkers and Shawn vs Tatanka matches were both decent, but nothing worth going out of your way to see.
    I hate celeb matches, although at least Bam Bam vs LT has the virtue of being watchable, and the Shawn vs Diesel main event is pretty good also. Rest of the card pretty much sucked a dick though.

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  53. Yeah, great WrestleMania, great stuff from Lesnar, Rollins has been fantastic in every role (he honestly deserved Wrestler of the Year over Sami), Rusev has been fun (as I mentioned), Cesaro and Kidd are a GREAT combo.


    Roman, Cena and Bryan have failed us (for different reasons and not all their fault) but the heel work has been great across the board.

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  54. The first 7-8 months of 2014 were pretty terrific. Basically everything since Summerslam has been one of the worst stretches of programming in WWE history.

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  55. Hindsight being 20-20, 1995 should've been the year they gave Undertaker a run with the title. I'm not sure why Vince suddenly fell in love with the idea of Diesel as champ (well, aside from the hair and his height) and it's especially confusing when he won the title outta nowhere from Backlund. At least with Undertaker you have a 'monster' face champ who's already over and respected by the fans.

    Really, 1995 was so poorly booked that almost any fantasy booking tops the real thing. I don't even really think the roster was all that bad that year, it's just that there were just so many poor storylines and angles and poorly-arranged shows.

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  56. Burt Macklin, FBIMarch 14, 2015 at 3:14 AM

    I quit watching after Mania 26 and didn't watch again until Mania 27 so I have no idea but I can say that none of it seemed interesting enough to make me want to watch.

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  57. Burt Macklin, FBIMarch 14, 2015 at 3:17 AM

    I'm defending WrestleMania 27 again. Taker/HHH, Punk/Orton, Cody/Rey and Edge/ADR. Two at *** and two at ****+

    The Cole/Lawler travesty and Miz/Cena travesty certainly throw the show down into middle of the road but solidly outside the realm of worst.

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  58. 18 is the worst Wrestlemania. Hogan vs Rock was a spectacle for sure but everything else was pretty lacklustre/bad.

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  59. Bam Bam's death wasn't a suicide, was it? The opening line is way off, too - WM XI is almost invariably touted as one of the worst, if not the worst.

    I myself don't mind it. There's nothing mega-special about it, and nothing that really stands out (although I am a fan of the title match, and being a bit of a Bigelow mark means the main event will always have a special place in my heart), but little that's actively horrible. Many more are easily way worse, by token of being actively bad. In fact, considering how few of the first 15 Manias were actually any good, I think it holds up pretty well.

    XV, 27, 18, IV...all much more obvious contenders for worst.

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  60. It was the show that marked the death of the product for me. When HHH came back and completely dominated programming from the word go, I thought 'here we go again', and then the product regressed. Wrong people getting pushed, wrong people getting buried.

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  61. 12 is the worst ever.


    Six-man was pretty god, not anything to get excited about though.


    Piper-Goldust was offensive, crap, had an OJ Simpson thing two years after the event, and didn't even have 'garbage' appeal to it.


    Austin-Vega was a fucking boring snoozefest. That ended with a resthold. If anyone had told you that Austin would go on to headline Mania 2 years later, you'd have had them committed.


    Warrior-HHH was over in a minute. So yeah.


    Undertaker-Diesel was also a boring match. It's not that you can't have good big man power matches(check Taker-Batista at Mania 23). But Undertaker-Diesel is not a good big man match. In fact, it's not a good match at all.


    Hart-Michaels is an one-hour plus of you life you will never get back. After the 25-minute entrances, they stink up the ring for an hour. The sad thing is these guys could have put on a killer match. But they were both so fucking prissy about their positions, that neither guy sells anything. This could have worked, but neither guy wanted to be the guy to lose the first fall. The ending, with the overtime, is disgraceful. Michaels' first run with the belt gets off to the worst possible start.


    The other thing is that going into the show, nobody gave a fuck about the main event. Revisionist history, especially after Montreal, has told us this was a big match. But it wasn't. Hardly anybody cared. In fact, even Meltzer said about how the only reason anyone was there was to see Warrior. And that match was over in a minute.

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  62. Which two are at ****? Taker and?

    I don't know, that show was a total dud for me. I think the booking in the lead-up didn't help, with the most desperately thin, cobbled together feuds (Punk takes revenge on Orton after 2 years! etc.). There is some good stuff on there (nothing we hadn't seen before though), but the bad stuff is baaaad, and there's metric tons of filler.

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  63. Yeah, a frequently overlooked shitshow (in fact, I myself overlooked it in my earlier comment). I'd argue that Taker's match is pretty decent, and the six man is meh, though. I never thought 14 was any good either, but it started the Fed's hot streak and launched so many careers that I suppose its sacred cow status is justifiable.

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  64. Fantasy booking is gay.

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  65. Not great at all. One thing always puzzled me. Punk comes off the ropes so Orton can RKO him. But if Orton hadn't RKO'd him, what was Punk actually gonna do? Because all he did was climb the ropes, then come off into a spot where Orton could RKO him. I've always hated this sort of thing. It happens in 'hardcore' matches, ladder matches, tables matches, all the fucking time. They set up a contrived situation, so they can have a Big Spot. But there's no fucking reason for the guy who goes through the table(or in this case eats the RKO for the pin), to do what he was doing UNLESS he's trying to go through the table(or eat the RKO).

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  66. Battle Kat LitterMarch 14, 2015 at 4:42 AM

    I personally don't subscribe to the whole idea of one good match saving a Wrestlemania. Wrestlemania is a huge affair, often four hours. I want atmosphere, crowd enjoyment, a sense of occasion, meaningful matches (even if they don't hit a certain star rating), great commentary, memorable moments etc. I could absolutely call a Wrestlemania the worst (or my least favourite) if it had one ****+ match and the rest was a snooze.

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  67. Didnt Chris Masters do something similar only he unearthed a fucking tree trunk and bashed the door open and then ran in a burning house to save people? I never knew Bam did that.

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  68. I would also like to add John Cena's "worse year ever".
    And Brock losing his first match.
    Unless im getting my years mixed up in which case I apologise.

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  69. I'd be careful with saying "In discussions of the worst Mania ever, no one mentions WM 11, and I think that fact proves my point that it's the worst Mania ever" because by that logic, Wrestlemania 17 could be proven as the worst Mania ever.

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  70. Battle Kat LitterMarch 14, 2015 at 6:00 AM

    Yeah that's a bad show. Amazing that it's only a year removed from X7. Majority of the show is throwaway trash.

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  71. Battle Kat LitterMarch 14, 2015 at 6:03 AM

    I'm offended by your use of the word gay

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  72. Battle Kat LitterMarch 14, 2015 at 6:09 AM

    Thing is, so much of this can be influenced by your level of fandom at the time. I love 6, 7, 8 and enjoy 9 - but that was my peak period of childhood WWF love. Likewise anything 2000-01 - the peak of my adult WWF love.

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  73. Nash said in his shoot that Shawn actively sabotaged him in that match. There's no heat over it; Nash said all the Kliq guys understood that looking out for each other was a priority, but at the end of the day, wrestling is a zero-sum game and there were gonna be times where one guy's gain was gonna be another guy's loss. It was business.

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  74. Same with me. 6 is the event that made me a fan.

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  75. I know the piledriver is banned now. But Jerry performed it his whole career. He should have used it against Cole to win the match.

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  76. 8 may be the worst simply because it deprived the world of an advertised British Bulldog/The Berzerker match. That could've main evented any arena in the country.

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  77. Nah, it's fine the way it was posted

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  78. 31 WILL be the worst Wrestlemania ever. People will overrate the shit out of the ladder match but it'll still be okay, Rollins/Orton will be around **3/4, Rusev/Cena probably around the *** mark, and everything else will be dog shit.

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  79. Damn, almost a million buys? That's even more insane considering they had to scrape the co-main event in Weidman vs. Belfort.

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  80. Yeah it was. Blame the emailer, plus other random wrongos for confusing me.

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  81. Fat, Ugly Inner-City SweathogMarch 14, 2015 at 9:26 AM

    Yeah, Taker could have feasibly been the guy in that spot for sure. Maybe keep Diesel in heel mode and build to Taker vs Diesel at Mania 11 or SummerSlam. Backlund makes a grandstand open challenge, lights go out, Taker destroys him for the title at MSG. Diesel dominates the Rumble to become the Rumble. Taker retains at Mania, Diesel turns face. Bret vs Owen or Backlund, HBK vs Razor II

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  82. But we missed Kamala vs Bam Bam for number 9! That would have made the show!!!

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  83. "Squash for 20 minutes" sounds kinda oxymoronic.

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  84. I laughed when several years ago, WWE touted Shawn/HBK as the Greatest Match of All Time. Can't remember if it was something that the wrestlers themselves voted on, or something the company decided entirely by themselves, but it was ridiculous either way.

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  85. are you talking about the "WrestleMania's Ten Greatest Matches" special from 2004?

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  86. "The other thing is that going into the show, nobody gave a fuck about the main event."

    personally, the point that kept young-me from caring much about it wasn't that I didn't like both guys (though at that point I liked Hart a lot more than Michaels) but instead that it was such a foregone conclusion.

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  87. That's OK. You'll get over it.

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  88. That should have been the only move in the match.

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  89. I was hoping for either a piledriver thru the Cole-Mine table, or a piledriver onto the Anonymous GM laptop

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  90. Punk Orton is sick

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  91. Charismatic eNegro Jef VinsonMarch 14, 2015 at 12:25 PM

    Three piledrivers (one on a chair) and Cole sells it by being off TV for 3 weeks.

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  92. Charismatic eNegro Jef VinsonMarch 14, 2015 at 12:27 PM

    Shawn sold, Bret didn't .

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  93. Charismatic eNegro Jef VinsonMarch 14, 2015 at 12:33 PM

    The only time that spot made sense was when he RKO'ed Evan Bourne because the nature of the move put him in position for the RKO counter.

    One counter I do hate is when Orton counter the AA with the RKO because if it's not caught with the right camera angle you don't know what happens.

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  94. Charismatic eNegro Jef VinsonMarch 14, 2015 at 12:35 PM

    Honestly what fucked that match up was Nash with the strong kickout after the Superkick.

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  95. Punk was going for his springboard clothesline, one of his signature manoeuvres through his entire WWE run. I really liked that match ending because it's one of the few times someone was beliveably 'caught out' by an RKO. (Unlike that Jericho vs. Orton match last year, which was the total opposite.)

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  96. lol, a resthold, you're funny

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  97. That was 2011-2012.

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  98. Let's just say that the rise of AJ Lee on NXT was probably the most interesting journey of any wrestler that year.

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  99. I think it will suck, but I expect rollins/Orton to be better than that at least. I don't think the IC title match will be nearly as good as people think simply because it's behind 5 other matches in company perceived importance (and frankly they don't care about the IC title anymore). It'll be lucky to get 10 minutes.

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  100. If I had to guess, that was Nash's reciept for Shawn trying to gas him out in the first five minutes.

    Funny how he ignored that yet later talked about killing a guy's finish being the #1 in-ring no-no in the same shoot.

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  101. Burt Macklin, FBIMarch 14, 2015 at 5:44 PM

    I consider Punk/Orton **** and I vacillate on that Taker/HHH match its either **** or ****1/2 I can't decide.

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  102. Given the participants you have listed, I actually have zero doubt in my mind that Shawn/HBK would be the greatest match ever wrestled. ;)

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  103. Stay away from my 16 year olds.

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  104. It never looked like that though. His arms stayed right at his sides right up until Orton hit the RKO "out of nowhere"(hahaha). If he was going for the clothesline, his arm wouldn't have been tucked in/

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  105. Right, and you think Roman Reigns, dude who gasses 5 minutes into a match, can take Brocks bumps... How the fuck else you expect that match to go? Unless Brock goes rest holds for 20 minutes, that's the only other way that match goes.

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  106. These John Cena years just all blend together for me.

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  107. I stopped watching by then..

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  108. Id rather a show with one legitimate 5 star match and the rest of the show a bore then a card where everything is decent to good with nothing breaking 3 1/2 stars. Would you rather have ok sex every day this week or only get laid one night this week but it is absolutely mind blowing sex? Thats how I just prefer my wrestling shows and my sex life.

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  109. That Shawn-Diesel match is ... not very good.

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