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The SmarK RAW Rant–06.24.13

The SmarK RAW Rant – 06.24.13

Live from Charleston, SC

Your hosts are Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler & JBL

Quick DVD review to start, as Sony sent me The Call due to my love and admiration for the previous WWE Studios releases, I guess. Now of course I’ve previously torn them a new one for pieces of garbage like The Marine and more recently 12 Rounds, but as much as I hate to say it…this was a pretty great movie. Even though I had seen the trailer (which basically gives away the entire plot), it was still a super-tense and well-paced thriller with a clever premise. If you haven’t seen the million trailers on RAW, Halle Berry is a 911 operator named Jordan who accidentally causes the kidnapping and eventual death of a woman during a home invasion, and feels so guilty about it that she retires to become a teacher. However, the same dude strikes again, and she happens to be there to step back into the headset one more time and talk another girl through a kidnapping. Now, clearly you have to accept some caveats here, like the LAPD apparently being completely incompetent and somehow not being able to track a disposable cell phone or find a car on the freeway. Whereas with something like 12 Rounds the writing was so insulting that I couldn’t suspend my disbelief, The Call ratchets up the tension by throwing every obstacle in the way of the victim (and the poor kidnapper, who has EVERYTHING go wrong for him) and then going with the good old Saw leftover killing floor set for the final act. Yeah, it’s bunch of pieces of better movies sewn together, but Berry is a real actress doing real acting instead of a wrestler shooting on weekends between PPVs, and it shows. I never felt like the movie was insulting my intelligence, and the ending is pretty damn dark for this sort of thing. Normally you’d expect the cop boyfriend to swoop in and shoot the bad guy to save the day for the helpless ladies, but no, they go another way completely. I also appreciated that it wasn’t trying to be overly smart or tricky by doing the “Saw twist” with dramatic reveal at the end or anything. Just a straightforward “bad guy kidnaps girl, good guys try to catch him” movie, and for what it was I enjoyed the hell out of it. Plus Michael Imperioli is in it, and isn’t playing either a cop or a mobster. So it’s got that going on as well. Big thumbs up!

Daniel Bryan v. Randy Orton

Bryan gets PROMO TIME before the match, and Orton attacks and tosses him quickly. They quickly brawl and it’s a no-contest at 1:23.

Meanwhile, Daniel Bryan is pissed off and either wants another match with Orton tonight or one with Maddox. So Vickie grants that, but Vince steps in and may or may not be against the idea.

The Rhodes Scholars v. Sheamus & Christian

Christian puts Cody down with a pair of shoulderblocks and goes after Sandow, but he’s a man of PEACE. So he lets Cody blindside Christian instead. Back in, the heels work Christian over while Lawler reminisces about Jackie Fargo. Sandow with the ELBOW OF DISDAIN for two. Hot tag Sheamus and he dumps Sandow for the forearms and then finishes Cody with the Brogue at 4:39. The crowd was just MOLTEN for this one. **1/2

Meanwhile, Vickie wants to put CM Punk in a match tonight, but he basically tells her to fuck off.

Aksana v. Kaitlyn

Kaitlyn quickly dumps Aksana, but her own music plays and AJ comes out dressed in a muscle suit. This is distracting enough for Aksana to get two, but the spear finishes for Kaitlyn at 1:25 anyway. This was all just fodder for the Divas show anyway, I’m sure.

Alberto Del Rio v. Chris Jericho

Jericho with a dropkick and he throws chops in the corner, and a suplex gets two. Del Rio pounds away in the corner and hits a running kick, but Jericho comes back with a missile dropkick for two. Del Rio bails, and Jericho misses a dive and hits the floor as we take a break. Back with Jericho hitting a knee to the gut and an enzuigiri for two. He goes up and Del Rio hits his own enzuigiri to put Jericho on the floor, as “kicking the other guy in the head” is becoming a theme for this match. Back in, Del Rio with a suplex for two and he hits the chinlock. They slug it out and Del Rio wins that and stomps him down for two. Back to the chinlock and Del Rio sends him into the corner for some trashtalking by Ricardo, but Jericho fights to the top and gets a crossbody for two. Jericho with a northern lights suplex for two. Del Rio charges and hits the post, but he blocks the codebreaker, so Jericho tries the Walls instead. Del Rio fights THAT off, too, and superkicks him for two. Jericho reverses the armbar into a bulldog, but the Lionsault hits knee, and the armbar looks to finish…but Jericho makes the ropes! And he reverses into the Walls, so Ricardo runs in for the DQ at 15:05. Holy crap that was a great match before the bad finish. ***1/2 Dolph Ziggler saves Jericho from a beatdown…and then turns on him with a Zig Zag. Not quite a babyface yet, I guess. I’m sensing a three-way in Philly.

Meanwhile, COOHHH puts in his two cents on the Bryan situation, which of course is the opposite of what Vince wants.

Team Brickie are out to introduce the cover for WWE 2K14, which sounds like a form that you have to fill out at tax time. Brad and Vickie both show their cover ideas, with Vickie sucking up to the McMahons and Brad sucking up to John Cena. Vickie also plugs an app vote for the Bryan-Orton match tonight, despite the crowd booing her non-stop. Anyway, the real cover has the Rock on it, just to squeeze every last cent out of him I guess.

Ryback v. The Great Khali

Khali pounds him in the corner and boots him down, then puts him down with a clothesline. Ryback comes back with a shot to the knee and finishes with the Shellshock at 2:14. That was almost a babyface performance by Ryback, as he took a beating and came back with a giant finisher to win. * Ryback might be a bit of a lost cause at this point, though.

John Cena comes out for his usual interview and he’s upset with Mark Henry for fooling him, and the champ is yada yada.

Brodus Clay & Tensai v. The Usos v. 3MB

Winner of this gets a tag title shot at the PPV. Boy, that’s…uh…quite the tag division they’ve got going on now. They were building up to the Usos getting the shot at the last show and then dropped it for some reason, so you’d expect them to win the shot back here. Jimmy beats on Jinder, but Tensai lays him out and 3MB gets tossed. Brodus follows with an improbable dive off the apron and Tensai splashes Jimmy for two. Jey comes back with the flying splash to finish him at 1:58, however. I don’t see them being much of a challenge for the Shield. Match was nothing. ½*

Paul Heyman and CM Punk are out to air their dirty laundry against each other, and Punk gives us a history lesson about Heyman standing up for him in 2006 ECW, and he’s gonna bring Brock Lesnar DOWN. He also thinks that Paul should tell the truth for once in his life, so Paul swears, ON HIS CHILDREN, that he didn’t know Brock would be there. And the great thing is that he’s clearly lying. Heyman claims that he kept Brock and Punk apart to prevent professional jealousy, and any problem that Brock has is Brock’s problem and Heyman is still Punk’s best friend. Punk decides to believe him and they hug it out. This was a weird and kind of meandering segment.

Darren Young v. CM Punk

Young pounds Punk in the corner, but Punk suplexes him for two. Young claims a knee injury and then hits Punk with a cheapshot and clotheslines him for two. Belly to belly suplex gets two. Young goes to a chinlock, and Punk misses a charge and hits the corner, and Young gets two. Punk suplexes out of a chinlock and goes up, but Young cuts him off AGAIN. The double knees gets two. Punk comes back with the high kick and taps him with the Anaconda Vice out of nowhere at 6:14. What a weird match. * The PTP try the beatdown, but Curtis Axel makes the save and the crowd doesn’t know what to make of any of this. This show has been dying on the vine since the ADR-Jericho match.

Stephanie McMahon is out to introduce the MITB participants this year: CM Punk, Daniel Bryan, Sheamus, Randy Orton, Christian, Kane, and RVD. That’s a hell of a match right there, but could that be any more anticlimactic of an announcement?

Meanwhile, Ryback whines to Team Brickie about how he deserves yet another title match, but Jericho breaks in and we finally get the Ryback v. Jericho match that was rumored for Wrestlemania, in the battle of two guys who have nothing else going on.

Mark Henry is out to call us all puppets and idiots and such. Yeah, tell us, Mark!

Street Fight: Daniel Bryan v. Randy Orton

Take 2. Orton tosses him and they brawl on the floor, where Orton quickly knocks him silly with a chairshot as we take a break. Back with Bryan taking more of a beating before coming back with kicks in the corner, but Orton tosses a chair at him to slow that down. They fight on the apron where a table sits ominously, and Bryan tries several times to dropkick Orton through the table, before finally powerbombing him into it instead. Back in, Bryan grabs a kendo stick and beats the hell out of Orton with that, until Orton suplexes him through a table to cut him off. They engage in fisticuffs and Orton wins that one with a dropkick. Bryan comes back and goes up, but Orton catches him with a powerbomb for two. He pounds away on the mat, but Bryan wraps him up with the No Lock to counter. Orton grabs the kendo stick to break and whacks on Bryan with that to set up the draping DDT. RKO is countered into a backslide for two. Bryan goes nuts with the kendo stick and puts Orton in the No Lock again, but Orton grabs the stick again, so this time Bryan grabs the stick himself and chokes Orton out with it for the clean submission at 16:35. Orton teases a heel turn, but then shakes his hand and endorses him instead. And now the push to the top, for real this time, begins. ***1/2

The Pulse

Although as usual they should hack off an hour of this show and make it into the Main Event instead, two great long matches and nothing offensive makes this another good one.

Comments

  1. The WWE title MITB match should be Bryan/Kane/Orton/Ryback/The Shield. All those guys have crisscrossed and feuded all year long and it would be pretty cool seeing the Shield work together in a MITB match.

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  2. The Punk/Heyman segment really clinched it at the end where you could tell that Paul was clearly lying...but then so was Punk in accepting the answer, and it's going to be a game of who can screw who first. Meandering segment maybe, but Punk & Heyman headgames = WIN.

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  3. Is there anyone left to work the WHC MITB match? I'm guessing it's Wade Barrett against the Miz or something?

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  4. Punk shouldn't be in the MitB ladder match. I don't know what he should be doing, but he's not going to win that match and I feel like that's a step down. He's going to be fighting BROCK LESNAR at Summerslam and he should be winning every match he's in between now and then.

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  5. It's occurred to me how large of a mistake it was putting mid-carder belts on The Shield. Not only did it diminish their push as a main event threat, but it ties up two championships.

    Antonio Cesaro, along with his new manager and role, would make a perfect challenger for the US Championship and The Wyatt Family would benefit greatly from debuting and winning the tag titles. I understand that Team Hell No had to drop the belts to begin Bryan's singles push, but they should have gone to transitional champs, like the Usos.


    I'm sick to fucking death of them pushing the hell out of someone and then dropping them down the card once they cool off. Look at how many people has had it happen to them this year. Swagger, (who REALLY should have started out chasing the US belt... I mean, more than JBL should have) The Shield and Curtis Axel to name some. Axel went from beating Triple H, to beating Cena, to beating Wade Barrett. If that isn't "good, better, best" in reverse, what is?

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  6. Not as great of a show as last week, but it moved the chains. I'll take it.

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  7. TheRealCitizenSnipsJune 24, 2013 at 11:43 PM

    Standard pedantic complaint- Every time someone does a fakeout like Henry the announcers invariably say "_____ should win an Oscar for his performance!" No! Pro wrestling shows are not movies! You would win an Emmy, not an Oscar, dammit! Righteous indignation!

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  8. Your_Favourite_AssholeJune 24, 2013 at 11:49 PM

    apparently wwe doesnt understand the meaning of "cover." last i checked, the flip side was called 'the back' i could also totally see the mcmahon cover being an real cover that eventually was rejected

    when dbry had orton in the yes/no/call-me-maybe lock, thats the 1st time i can think of where i actually thought 'tap you motherfucker' since benoit/hhh @ wmxx

    i hope punks not the new sting for trustin' heyman. kinda felt like his promo was cut short @ the start where he was in ecdub and then it kinda jumped to present day

    decent show but tonights crowd sucked. never go back to charleston

    oh yeah i was all ready to zip thru the ad for the call but they suckered me in with the kane thing. well played wwe to make me watch the ad

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  9. Miz, Cesaro, Barrett, Ambrose...It's a pretty weak field, cuz then you're looking at guys like The Scholars, Khali, Truth...

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  10. What they should have done is have a reason why X is in the WWE title MITB match or done qualifying matches? Last year had a good reason for the participants with only former WWE champs.
    Why isn't Ryback in the match but RVD & Christian are? I guess wins & losses don't matter. Ryback lost to Henry at WM but got the title shot at Extreme Rules. Henry lost to Sheamus at Extreme Rules but Henry gets the title shot. This is why I like the Bound for Glory series because it makes wins & losses matter.

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  11. Whatever design wins the cover contest it will appear on the inside of the case, so they're correct about calling it the flip side.

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  12. Your_Favourite_AssholeJune 24, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    oh ok

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  13. Last year you had jobbers like Santino, Tyson Kidd & Sin Cara in the WHC match. Year before had Sin cara, Heath Slater & Justin Gabriel in the WHC match

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  14. Henry is the exception; give him all the awards

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  15. How about put Ryback, Jericho, Kofi & Big Show in there to even things up but it's still pretty heel heavy.

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  16. I just noticed that the WWE MITB field are all faces

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  17. Axel was doing fuck all before this, got no heat against the main eventers, but instead off dumping him completely he's Ic champ and involved in the Punk and Lesnar story; I'd say he's doing fine careers wise compared to even four months ago.

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  18. Your_Favourite_AssholeJune 25, 2013 at 12:00 AM

    oh yeah whats up with the 1-800-fella stuff?

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  19. i think it's supposed to be funny.

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  20. actually it is amusing enough. i just felt that was supposed to be the reply.

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  21. davidbonzaisaldanamontgomeryJune 25, 2013 at 12:07 AM

    As much as I miss the faux-"Chelsea Dagger" theme, I really like Cesaro's current theme, esp. since it also reminds me of Double Ho Seven.


    SAMUEL LIGHT! THERE'S POOP IN THIS CHARI!

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  22. Well, Bryan is more or less a lock to win MitB this year. At least they're putting him over for real this time. Making Orton tap out cleanly is Bryan's signature WWE victory. So far. I don't really like saying that, but it won't be that way for long. Just wait until Summerslam

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  23. I didn't get 'meandering' at all from the Punk/Heyman segment. I thought it established their backstory nicely and laid a solid foundation for the impending Punk/Brock feud. I really appreciate the dimension they've given to Punk and Heyman's relationship. It's nice to see them doing something beyond the usual side switch=instant hatred formula. I realize Heyman was probably lying and will do a hard turn on Punk down the line, but it's great that they're slowly building to that; it's going to mean so much more when it happens now.

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  24. The Bryan/Orton rivalry reminds me a lot of the Benoit/DDP US title angle. Except Orton has actually put Bryan over. DDP talked Benoit up a lot during their angle, but the booking never actually resulted in Benoit being elevated.

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  25. I wonder if they're gonna turn Orton within the next 3 weeks?

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  26. How have the Sheild guys been depushed? Just because they weren on the show this week? That can happen from time to time, it doesn't mean their push is over.

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  27. Anybody else notice Punk's new tattoo?

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  28. Christian has won all of his matches.

    RVD probably negotiated the spot in his contract, a la The Rock.

    See? Easy to justify!

    And I think that Daniel Bryan is doing a pretty good job at making wins and losses matter.

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  29. The dead crowd really hurt tonight's show. Even Bryan's win over Orton didn't seem like a big deal because of it.

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  30. Am I the only one who thinks that Heyman is being genuine with Punk?

    He has been built up as the one guy who has had Punk's back for years. Would he really throw that all away to become generic evil foil just because Punk said he doesn't want him accompanying him to the ring?

    And I don't think that Punk would want to work such a simplistic angle. Much more interesting for this so called face turn to be a red herring.

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  31. Well, it has to be heel heavy because all 7 guys in the other match are faces. Fine, DB is booked a little tweenery, but he's still a face. And I guess you could say Punk is a reluctant tweener because he won't break up with his BFF and Captain Countout is running in to save him... but still, face.


    I guess one of them will turn, but maybe not.

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  32. They weren't really dead, they were just extra marky. Most over guys on the show were Sheamus and Orton. Orton, that's pretty normal, but Sheamus got a reaction like the love child of 1980's Hogan and Stone Cold.


    And Cena got a pretty positive reaction before he bored them to death.

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  33. Yes, because they weren't on the show. Guys who are pushed are on the show every week.

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  34. Why would he turn on Brock Lesnar, who was straight up murdering everyone, to manage the Big Show, whose biggest accomplishment in the year or so leading up to this was polishing off a bucket of fried chicken backstage? It's wrestling, it doesn't have to make sense.

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  35. Jericho and Ryback are already fighting each other.

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  36. And have Punk do what instead?

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  37. Brock turned on Heyman. Heyman just advised Lesnar that he couldn't beat The Big Show.

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  38. Uh no. Lesnar destroyed Show in a glorified squash match with a ref bump, and Heyman pulled the run-in ref out of the ring to turn heel.


    So basically he threw away Lesnar for a fat jobber. It made him look really stupid. So if he can do that, he can sure as hell become generic evil foil here. That and it makes sense because he'd be picking the "right" guy as a manager.


    If they did the same exact swerve again it would be beyond stupid.

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  39. With all the McMahon-Vickie power-play foolishness, I wouldn't be surprised if the MITB lineups get switched a few times between now and the actual PPV. If that is going to be the final lineup, though, it's kind of weird that they're all babyfaces. Guess it means Cena is dropping the belt soon -- maybe Henry beats him at MITB, has a short reign with the only title he's never won, loses to Bryan and actually retires.

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  40. But goddamn, does it feel right.

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  41. Pics of girlfriend or it didn't happen.

    (Nude preferably)

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  42. unless paul strings him along and then BROKC LNSEAR runs in and demolishes him halfway through the match?

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  43. Face Mr. Adequate, Curtis Axel.

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  44. Punk/Axel vs Prime Time Players is perhaps the oddest tag team match to get a week of buildup since Hogan/Orndorff vs The Moondogs.

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  45. * 12 Condemned Evil Calls To The Marine That's No Holds Barred

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  46. ...and then Orton is the real grower of Bryan's beard?

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  47. Oh my god! Is the pickle ok?

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  48. My wife noticed too and almost died laughing.

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  49. A lot of people compare Benoit and Daniel Bryan (and I was a Benoit mark) but Daniel Bryan is miles ahead of Benoit as a talker.

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  50. I'd let her give me the rub!


    (Get it? I'm saying I'd like her to touch my my pee pee)

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  51. Color me intrigued if they go with Bork v. Punk with Heyman in the middle. We're all just Jimmy Johns subs on two legs to Brock anyway.

    If they do turn Heyman I hope that it's not Heyman scheming all along but that situations like Monday keep popping up and eventually Punk attacks Heyman so Heyman sides with Brock.

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  52. I hope Punk doesn't hurt his back carrying those three.

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  53. I was trying to come up with something better than Mr. Adequate, best I could come up with was Mr. Meh.

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  54. I must say I rather enjoyed this Raw and I'm glad I dvred it. Plus I was totally digging the main event and getting into it. Let's see if WWE can keep churning out good shows.

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  55. Yeah. I was getting a little worried for the apparent start of the Bryan push since that crowd of sheep obviously wanted Orton to win.

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  56. AverageJoeEverymanJune 25, 2013 at 7:13 AM

    Well they came out to stare down their PPV apponents so they were on the show and got a big pop

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  57. AverageJoeEverymanJune 25, 2013 at 7:15 AM

    The old lady who was ready to show her goods to Sheamus was money.

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  58. AverageJoeEverymanJune 25, 2013 at 7:17 AM

    Then they have a ladder match to win ownership of the beard where Vicki Guerrero was supposed to interfere but missed her que prompting one of the participants (Orton based on his history) to yell "where the fuck is Vicki?!!!"

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  59. How ironic that Orton would be playing the role of the guy who threw a tantrum in the middle of the ring when they screwed up Vickie's run-in in the ladder match.

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  60. I like the way you think Ian and I would love to subscribe to your newsletter.

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  61. YankeesHoganTripleHFanJune 25, 2013 at 7:37 AM

    My favorite line from that episode? "I can't, I'm....to drunk"

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  62. YankeesHoganTripleHFanJune 25, 2013 at 7:45 AM

    How does the booking sound? Bryan wins MITB. Henry cheats to beat Cena for the title, (lets him have his moment with the title.) The next night on Raw, Cena demands his rematch but it ends in a no contest. Cena hits an AA, (on two) on Henry post match and Bryan cashes in for the title. Main event for Summerslam, Cena vs Bryan with the storyline being, (in keeping with the weak link theme) that Bryan had to cash in MITB both times in order to win the title and now he has to prove that he can win "The big one" without help.

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  63. So a few weeks ago when John Cena wasn't on th the show that was the end of his push?

    And The Shield was on the show, they didn't have a match but they were there.

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  64. Swagger is slightly different. He got popped by the police for drugs, he had no heat and then he gave a concussion to the WHC. If that's not grounds for a depush I don't know what is.

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  65. Because That's What I Am, Knucklehead, And I'll Chaperone You On The Day Everyone Dies.

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  66. Upvoted for "call-me-maybe" lock.

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  67. The only problem with that storyline is that I don't believe for a second they would let Bryan beat Cena at SS, so if you book it this way then the result of the whole angle is "Yep, Bryan's a chump who can't win the big one."

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  68. "Average Joe" Hennig. "Now that's what I call...average!"

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  69. Close it down, @Ryan Murphy won.

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  70. BLACKHAWKS!

    That is all.

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  71. The WWE Universe which is a separate entity to the regular one, has different physics than ours.

    Prescribing to the "Infinite Dimensions" theory, they operate in a slightly different yet "parallel" universe each week. So this week's CM Punk is technically a different entity than last weeks. Though the changes are subtle when seen week to week, the changes become obvious when you take samples over a longer period.

    It's similar to the book 2001: a space odyssey. In the original book they go to Saturn. However in the subsequent books they had gone to Jupiter and Saturn was never discussed. They didn't ret con it. They were just in a slightly different universe.

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  72. They could make a stipulation that winner joins the whc match. Or they could just forget About the match by next week in typical wwe fashion.

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  73. National WWE Universe to Charleston WWE Universe: Drop Dead

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  74. "His girlfriend" is a euphemism for his right hand.

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  75. YankeesHoganTripleHFanJune 25, 2013 at 8:10 AM

    I don't know...I think that they are slowly realizing what they have with Bryan. Cena would be fine, he can afford the loss.

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  76. I liked it too. And I'm ok with the slow pacing.
    Sometimes you just need to have a little exposition to set up a story. It's not very exciting, but it's a necessary component to writing

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  77. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 8:17 AM

    I'm just super on board with pretty much everything they're doing right now. The Punk/Heyman follow-up was logical and the eventual Punk/Lesnar feud should be all kinds of crazy.

    Cena is right now the most tolerable he's been in forever, thanks to the fact that he's cutting out the bad jokes and actually selling his opponent as a bad-ass threat. It's simple "hero vs monster" booking and it's working.
    The Shield seems a bit minimized right now, but I don't think that's a bad thing— with all the main event storylines happening right now (Cena/Henry, Punk/Lesnar/Heyman, Bryan/Orton, Ziggler/DelRio) there simply just isn't room for them on top now. But I like the direction, which is probably to feed them the Usos and Christian in title defenses at MITB, and then push them against Taker/Kane/HHH at Summerslam. Very solid.


    But the main thing, of course, is just how incredibly well the Bryan storyline has gone. Chalk me up as someone who hated the "weak link" thing when it first started, as I figured it was the impetus for turning him into a whiny heel. Instead they're actually telling a long term story about a hero overcoming obstacles and improving himself on his way to the top. Amazing. I dunno guys, I know we've all been burned before, but I think Bryan is going all the way. I really, really think he pulls off teh feel-good babyface title win over Cena at Summerslam.

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  78. They were pretty deep in "Cena Country". It's a shame Tim Tebow hadn't gone out there. The crowd would have gone absolutely banana.

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  79. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 8:19 AM

    Yeah I agree, I'd be really surprised if the end result isn't Bryan going over Cena for the title. I think the higher-ups are all-in on making Bryan a tippy-top main event superface. The win over Orton last night was huge.

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  80. I agree, but he still needs to show he can cut a money promo. Hopefully he can do it when he stands in the ring with Cena, right now he's using YES as a crutch, .

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  81. Yeah, thought from the beginning it was a terrible crowd, but as someone said beliow, it may have been because they were markish.

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  82. YankeesHoganTripleHFanJune 25, 2013 at 8:27 AM

    Or Zeb

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  83. What's the last one?

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  84. I'm a huge, huge fan of Punk. But... is it just me, or has Punk looked especially blown up in both of his matches back? More so than usual? I know most people attributed it to his selling, but in fact, it looks a lot like the real thing. His match with Darren Young was positively weird because of his lack of energy.

    Just curious if I'm imagining things.

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  85. Scream09_HartKillerJune 25, 2013 at 8:47 AM

    If I'm booking the match, Henry gets Cena in a bearhug. Cena, as we know, will not quit. But Henry just continues to squeeze until there's a brown stain in the back of Cena's jean shorts. Cena passes out, having the shit literally squeezed out of him. It plays on Wrestlemania 13 when Austin refused to quit despite the pain and blood loss, and there would be the irony of Cena now being the one with poop in his pants.

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  86. Vince loves to push the smaller guys over the Summer (HBK, Benoit, Bryan, Punk, etc). He must have a thing for summer time lean men.

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  87. Did someone say "positively"?

    http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/kanyon_3121.jpg

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  88. If JBL screams "Who's poopy now, John?!?!?!" at that finish I would mark out.

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  89. Regardless of the show's overall quality, it just feels a heck of a lot better to be a wrestling fan. The months of February and March and their road to inevitable, predictable doom was the closest I came to walking away from WWE in about seven years. The 3 hour Raws, the build up to rematches no one wanted to see, the transparency and predictability--this was some serious soul-sucking stuff.

    WWE can do a lot of things right now and have many paths available to them, especially with versatile and relatively fresh guys at the top. Ziggler, Punk, and Bryan (perhaps the internet's triumvirate) are all on top and getting the spotlight. RVD is likely to main event or tease main eventing again. On the other side, Henry and Lesnar are entertaining monster heels with purpose. I'd be willing to put money on a sadistic Orton heel turn or Sheamus turning into a Batista-like heel.



    Then, is it possible they elevate and give legitimate chances Cesaro or Hennig with their new managers and gimmick changes? What's in store for the Wyatt family and the returning Christian? The Shield is awesome? (Okay, that's not a question, but it was the theme of the paragraph).



    The main thing is that they can go in many different directions and outcomes with these characters and it would still be intriguing or feel right.

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  90. I gotta say, I stopped ffwding for the punk/heyman segment, and it was not good. At all. Ten minutes of just blather. I know that it's eventually leading to the explosion but that segment just added nothing to it.

    And they've basically blown off the orton/Bryan thing. So we now get random pairings of the mitb participants for 2 weeks?

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  91. I think the crowd killed that segment. I was into it but the lack of any noise whatsoever really hurt the whole thing.

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  92. I was personally into it, but I agree that it kind of just dragged on. Started off real hot, but like Culture said, I think the crowd definitely didn't do it any favors.

    ReplyDelete
  93. We probably needed a solid Miz TV segment instead of the Punk blathering, eh, Dougie?

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  94. I think what's good with Cena now is that he doesn't feel like the focal point of the show, which I think has been given more to Bryan. The last two weeks, Cena has been in two segments and no matches. Last night, Bryan opened the show, had his segment with Vickie and was in the main event. I like it.

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  95. It couldn't have hurt.

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  96. Cena approaches Henry in the locker room with a tear in his eye, and poop in his pants, to tell him that that was the greatest bearhug that he's ever been a part of, and that Mark should be the WWF champion.

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  97. but punk is skinny fat...

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  98. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 9:28 AM

    Totally. It actually could help Cena's career quite a bit if they were able to ONLY have him wrestle on PPVs— give him back some Hogan-esque mystique instead of him having meaningless matches week after week.

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  99. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 9:30 AM

    This is the most excited I've been to be a wrestling fan in a long, long time. And the best part is, like you said, there's just so many intriguing characters and storylines right now. Like, even back in Summer 2011 you basically just had the Summer Of Punk story and that was it. Once that got screwed up, there was nothing really left to latch onto. But now there's so many possibilities that you figure at least a few of them will lead to interesting places.

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  100. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 9:35 AM

    Last night was one of those situations where the uber protection of guys like Cena and Orton can really pay off. Sure, it sucks to watch month after month of Orton steamrolling through the Barretts/Codys/Sandows of the world, but at least it puts Orton in a position to absolutely make someone star when they're ready to pull the trigger.


    Same goes for Cena. Sure I hated how Rock was used as another feather in Cena's cap, but hey— it'll mean even that much more when Bryan goes over on him. (Just as all it took was MITB '11 to turn Punk from mid-carder to main eventer.)


    Not saying that WWE was right all along and that Orton squashing the midcard year after year was the perfect way to go. But at least they're getting something major out of it now.

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  101. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 9:38 AM

    Oh yeah, of course have him at house shows. But as far as TV goes, this really should be the point at Cena's career where he becomes a bit more of a special attraction. Not a Rock/Taker schedule or anything, but they really should make it a point to only have Cena wrestle at most once a month on free TV, if at all. It'd totally make the PPVs feel more important, and would make the character feel less tired.

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  102. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 9:39 AM

    Really?

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  103. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 9:43 AM

    Really? REALLY?

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  104. I'm torn on the "Three Bosses for Vicky" storyline. I'm confused because while I understand dealing with divergent orders from multiple superiors, I have no clear idea what the hierarchy between all of the characters is.
    Also, I really miss Steph coming down to "Let the Bodies Hit the Floor."

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  105. I heard something recently that made me laugh: Stephanie is someone who was born on third base and acts like she hit a triple. She is definitely a weak on-air character but she acts like her crap doesn't stink.

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  106. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 10:11 AM

    Keller's Torch podcast! Was just listening to that on the train into work this morning.

    And that's pretty dead-on. The thing about Stephanie is I don't understand how they keep trying to present her as a face. She's a pompous rich asshole, yet somehow she's the HERO? If she insists on being on TV, she needs to get back into the leather skirts and go all-out heel. Otherwise it's just a giant mess.

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  107. Except for the fact that the person who wins the BFG Series inevitably lost a handful of times along the way.


    Don't get me wrong, there is nearly NO logic to how WWE operates, but let's not pretend the BFG Series is a super awesome way to push people.

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  108. Has John Cena EVER done as much to put over a new star as Orton did last night? I mean a clean, no-frills loss, and a tapout at that?


    Hell of a match too. Really happy for Bryan, but if people are expecting Cena to tap out to Bryan, I'm not sure this ends well, to quote an overused JBL phrase.

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  109. It went on too long, but I loved the bulk of it. Lots of emotion, and it established that Punk is still the same guy. He didn't magically become a good person just because he's now fighting heels. I dig that. Much better than his jokey 2011 persona.


    I did feel Paul uncharacteristically came off flat.

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  110. It looked like Punk might have legitimately tweaked his knee last night. As for the Jericho match, I just thought it was strong selling, but there may have been some genuine fatigue there.

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  111. Raw kicked ass. Two outstanding matches, and the main event reached **** for me. If they'd been given five to 10 more minutes, it might have even supplanted Punk-Cena as my TV MOTY. Hard-hitting action, great selling, outstanding psychology.

    Also, no love for Jericho's "I'd like to see you try, Mr. Back" line?

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  112. Axel is good in the ring.

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  113. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 10:44 AM

    In terms of just a straight up "this opponent just physically beat me fair and square because he's better than me" situation, nope, I don't think SuperCena has actually ever done that the way Orton did last night. As far as I can remember, Cena lost clean to Triple H back in that weird period after Mania 24 when he was jobbing to people. Oh, and Orton definitely has beaten him clean during their neverending feud a few years back. (Think it was in a Cell match actually.) And of course Rock beat him clean, and HBK did in the hourlong Raw match.


    Otherwise yeah, Cena's losses have always come with some sort of wacky interference. That said, I would argue that Cena has pretty much put Punk over Clean on several occasions. I mean, MITB'11 was a brief distraction after a 30-minute stalemate, and Punk proceeded to pin him with his finisher. And Summerslam the next month also saw Punk go over fairly clean— Cena had his foot on the ropes, but for a WWE superhero that's a fairly decisive loss.


    So sure, is Cena actually going to tap out to Bryan? Probably not. But I still think there's a good chance Bryan gets a win via some sort of Bret Hart-esque reversal-into-small-package, or Cena passes out in a No-Lock. Something clean that puts Bryan over, but Cena continues to "Never Give Up."

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  114. Ann Richards coined that term to describe George W. Bush.

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  115. Worst_in_the_WorldJune 25, 2013 at 10:48 AM

    Well I think you've got Vince going heel (anti-Bryan remarks; putting over the Shield) and Triple H as the face, and Stephanie— ugh, I guess we're supposed to care whose side she takes? The story could actually be fine if it was just HHH vs Vince, leading to a Summerslam blow-off where Vince backs Shield against team HHH (with Taker and Kane). Clear heel/face dynamics, and an actual match involving big stars.

    Involving Stephanie, the most hateable face character ever, is what's mucking things up.

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  116. "Where the fuck is Vicki??? STUPID! STUPID! STUPID!"

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  117. It's the old scorpion and the frog scenario. The scorpion asks the frog for help getting across a pond, but the frog says no because he knows the scorpion will kill him. The scorp says, "I won't! I swear! I need to get across, why would I kill you." The frog agrees with this logic and tells the scorp to hop on. They get halfway across the pond and the scorpion poisons the frog. The frog asks why and the scorp says, "I'm a scorpion, that's what I do," and they both drown.


    Paul Heyman? Lie? Only when he's breathing.

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  118. He wasn't a jobber at the time.

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  119. He lost to Tyson Kidd in less than a minute leading up to Money in the Bank.

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  120. They missed the boat with this storyline (SHOCKER!). What they should have done, IMO, is have Vickie being bullied by Vince and Hunter, being told two distinct things. But in the end, Vickie does something completely different.


    Where are these decisions coming from? After the third week or so, we see her talking to someone on her cell phone. Another week or so later, it's revealed that she was talking to Steph, who has used her influence to do things HER way, because her husband and father are being idiots.


    At least then you have some intrigue and not this tomfoolery.

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  121. I agree with those who think the McMahon drama will lead to the RAW MitB match to be changed before the PPV. I expect Vince will override Stephanie by announcing an all-heel MitB consisting of The Shield, Ryback, Curtis Axel, Antonio Cesaro, and Damian Sandow. Then HHH will order qualifying matches between the faces and the heels for the spots. The only exception will be RVD, who won't return until the PPV.

    That would lead to:

    CM Punk v Curtis Axel
    Sheamus v Damian Sandow
    Daniel Bryan v Dean Ambrose
    Randy Orton v Seth Rollins
    Kane v Roman Reigns
    Christian v Antonio Cesaro
    Chris Jericho (subbing for RVD) v Ryback

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  122. The crowd flat out sucked.


    You know you've got a real bad one when they're:
    A) Silent for most of the show
    B) Mainly looking around aimlessly
    C) Giving Sheamus a bigger pop than Bryan
    D) "WHAT?"

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  123. Is anyone else a little worried that the head writer has left?

    I know I could be a mile off here, but is there any chance he was actually responsible for this sudden improvement?


    I can't remember his name, but it's something ridiculously Jewish, unsurprisingly.

    ReplyDelete
  124. Halle and Orton team up in Call The Papers If They Have To

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  125. If they really want to MAKE Bryan, they should double down and go with the tried-and-true Sting-Vader route. Have Mark Henry obliterate John Cena like he did Randy Orton at Night of Champions a few years back, then play up the David v. Goliath angle with Bryan overcoming Henry's destructive power to win the title. If Henry could be convinced to run a rematch or two between September and October, you could save the John Cena program to run at Survivor Series and give Bryan the "Will He Survive the WWE's Greatest Superstar?" angle. If the ratings look good, then send him off to WrestleMania in a new program. You could do Rock/Brock, Cena/Undertaker, and Punk/Bryan.

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  126. That's a fair assessment. Plus, Bryan has the gift of comedic timing which is a skill Benoit never even came close to assimilating and is kind of important given the whole 'sports entertainment' thing. I would still put Benoit ahead in terms of sheer intensity, but some of that might owe to his 'enhanced' appearance and Bryan is not wanting of that quality by any means (that kendo stick/kick combo attack last night was INSANE).
    Nevertheless, the comparison is always going to be there. The two do have a similar moveset and Bryan occupies the same 'champion of the smarts' niche that Benoit held. I do think Bryan is a better fit for the WWE though and will have a better career overall.

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  127. It's important to remember that part of the way Benoit made his stuff look so real was by really beating the crap out of people. There are a couple of Daniel Bryan moves that look stiff as hell (the clothesline and the corner dropkick, which Rollins sells so amazingly) but by and large his stuff is smooth as all get out.

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  128. I like comparing Bryan more with Angle than Benoit. They have much more in common in and out of the ring, imo.

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  129. That crowd was annoying as shit last night during Henry's promo. If there is one STAIN that Austin left on "this business" is that god awful "WHAT?" chant. I fucking can not stand it, and pray to the gods it goes away. It kills Heels who are actually trying to get some heat, its done way more bad than it has good.
    Sorry I needed to vent, I was really irritated wit those chants, as they were louder than usual.

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  130. Cosign on most of it, not to mention that Bryan has the whole small package thing down.

    Here's an idea though: Rock isn't coming back. After his injury he's potentially leaving WAY too much money on the table. THAT SAID, I've long thought they should use Brock to get Daniel Bryan over. Have Brock win the WWE title, have Daniel Bryan win the Rumble. Have Brock refuse to wrestle Bryan for the title unless Bryan proves he can beat Brock. Have Daniel Bryan small-package Brock at Elimination Chamber, set up Wrestlemania as a submission match. Have Daniel Bryan bring in Randy Couture to "train" Daniel Bryan, have Daniel Bryan tap out Lesnar at Wrestlemania.

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  131. I had never thought of it until you said it but it's 1000% true. People compared Daniel Bryan to Benoit because no one (and I was a huge fan and I never saw this coming) thought he'd have the personality he does.

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  132. It's really annoying. I straddle the line between thinking, "you say something to shut them up/ get heat" (y'all keep saying what? I know people in South Carolina are stupid but damn, do I have to repeat everything?) or ignoring it.

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  133. Cena lost clean to sweet t last year on Raw for chirist's sakes. and yes Cena has put over his fare share of ppl

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  134. Not like that. Not completely clean and establishing that the opponent is the better man.


    Nor has he done the "opponent wins, handshake and put him over" finish.

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  135. Much better when they acknowledge it.

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  136. Yeah, but you don't want to encourage it. It's really awful.

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  137. The crowd was owning Henry bc he wasnt acknowledging it, and drowned out any hype for his match with Cena. IE its a HEAT KILLER at times. They need to do something to tell the marks to stop with that fucking chant, half of them probably werent old enough to see austin wrestle.

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  138. I'm in the minority, but I actually like the chant and think it creates a fun back-and-forth when the wrestler acknowledges it. Many are afraid to go off script and put down the fans.

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  139. the only one who acknowledged it and id it well was heel R Truth. Speaking of R Truth, turn that man back to heel, he sucks as a face and if it wasnt for smoking fake pot with Evan Bourne he was on a roll at the time tagging with Miz. He needs a fresh shake up and he's much better as a heel.

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  140. besides The Rock match its almost 90% of the time been face v heel matches for him. and in fairness when he beat Zack Ryder in early 2012 he shook his hand lol. Cena usually faces dastardly heels why would he shake his hands when Orton was a thorn in his side for months or when Edge was fucking whith him hard. He did alot In MAKING CM PUNK lets not forget people. Jobbed twice back to back, and he wrestled hm a few more times to dqs and draws. he finally only beat him on that AWESOME match they had on RAW early in the year which is still MOTY in my honest oppinion atm.

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  141. Hahaha silly fool with your fantasy booking.. oh crap that is where they are probably going.

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  142. Scream09_HartKillerJune 25, 2013 at 1:19 PM

    That's why he held the title for over a year - shinny enough for summer, fat enough for winter.

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  143. I had no idea what that meant. I had to rewind the DVR, watch it again to make sure I heard it right, and still had no idea what it meant.

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  144. Agreed... when they use it to turn it against the crowd, the crowd usually gives the chant up.

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  145. Nope... Stephanie announced it as the WWE Title MITB match. But I was wondering who's left to put in the other one. Cesaro? Ambrose?


    I also love how the number of people in the match is totally arbitrary... last year one had 8, the other had 4, this one they just announced has 7, etc.

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  146. Is that where that came from? Pearl Jam used it in their song "Bushleaguer," which created a bit of a stir in 2003.

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  147. Yes, because entertainers being critical of W. was so edgy and under-utilized.

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  148. Which is a bigger running joke in wrestling: Randy Orton's impending heel turn or Davey Richards claiming to leave wrestling every year but never does?

    ReplyDelete
  149. watching the Hulu version of this show seems so much better. only downside is that I never actually see the undercard guys.

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  150. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3ymP6mMhYQ


    All he has to do is this.

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  151. It's not Brian Gewirtz (sp) is it?

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  152. I really paranoid conspiracy theorist R-Truth, too. He was a lot of fun for a few months there.

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  153. Apparently it was in 2003, since anyone who dared criticize Dubbya or the Iraq War had lynch mobs after them. Seemed stupid then, seems especially ridiculous now.

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  154. Our recollections of the climate at the time are wildly divergent. Other than the Dixie Chicks, who were mainly criticized for waiting until they were overseas to vocalize their feelings, I don't recall a lot of "lynch mobs" pursuing Bush critics. Hell, even the Dixie Chicks had the entire entertainment industry (who hadn't cared a whit about them prior) throwing bouquets at them when "Not Ready To Make Nice" was released. So who had the lynch mobs in pursuit?

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  155. It's been around for, what (no pun intended), over 10 years now? I've no sympathy for wrestler's who can't/won't adapt to use that to their advantage.

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  156. It's the old scorpion and the frog scenario, where the scorpion has helped out the frog on every single other situation FOR YEARS!

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  157. Eric Pankowski. That's the one.

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  158. The crowd wasn't really the best audience for that kind of promo (which was awesome btw) all the crowd wanted was sheamus and cena.

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  159. The aforementioned Dixie Chicks, whose songs weren't getting played on the radio and groups burned their albums. Pearl Jam had members in their crowd turn against them for playing Bushleaguer in Denver and Long Island, including a NY firefighter flashing his badge at guitarist Mike McCready (not sure what that had to do with anything). It's clear we're of divergent political viewpoints, so let's just move on here.

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  160. Did someone else say "Positively"?

    http://wetalkwrestling.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/DDPSmiles.jpg

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  161. For "ridiculously Jewish," that name looks awfully Polish.

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  162. Everyone Dies, the horror movie they've been pushing recently with Brodus as one of the killers.

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  163. Again, if the wrestler's can't adapt to the WHAT chant after 10 YEARS (and Henry has been around for all of them!), then fuck em, they deserve what they get.

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  164. Honestly, out political viewpoints should be inconsequential to the discussion. But saying that there were "lynch mobs" for critics of Bush is just hyperbole and ends up revealing where you stand on it. Pearl Jam getting booed for playing a song that some of the crowd wants no part of hardly equates to a "lynch mob." The Dixie Chicks being dumb enough to piss all over the politics of their target demographic doesn't really cut the mustard, either. I don't seem to remember Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, Susan Sarandon, Martin Sheen, Matt Damon, Janeane Garofolo, Dustin Hoffman, or Samuel L. Jackson having to sleep with one eye open. Nor should they, as we're all free to express whatever opinions we want. That's not my point at all. I just bristle at the absurdity of "lynch mobs" out after Bush critics. Criticizing Bush and the Iraq War was trendier than trucker hats in 2003.

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  165. Encourage it! It's a test by a crowd that wants to get involved in the promo, it's imploring the wrestler to up his game and adapt to the situation.


    Eminem wouldn't have become much of a rapper if he just ignored the crowd every time they booed his early raps.

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  166. Except Cena is a way better Goliath than Henry is.

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  167. I dunno, I remember a lot of support for it back is 2003. Sure there was a lot of anti-Bush/War activism but I believe those in favor of it were just as, if not more numerous.


    It was a pretty ugly schism in our country.

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  168. Didn't have enough penis jokes in it for you?

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  169. Anybody else thinking it'll end with Curtis "hurting his knee" and Punk being demolished by PTP?

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  170. Because Paul's a heel, and Punk's no longer champion.

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  171. Does being jewish have anything to do with the subject?

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  172. He can. 2011 when he had just won MITB he talked about all the injuries he's suffered (dislocated shoulder, detached retina, deafness in his left ear) and how his mom begged him to quit wrestling but he just LOVES IT GODDAMN MUCH!


    I think Bryan is more of a big emotional money promo kind of guy than a regular once a week talk about how awesome I am promo dude.

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  173. Except Bryan has psychology.

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  174. Punk's expression at the last hug looked a little "I know what you're up to".

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  175. Agreed. I consider Bryan to be the best in ring technician of the last 10 years. Shawn may be better at hitting the face comebacks and possibly bumping, but as a psychologist in the ring, Bryan just eeks out Punk in my book.

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  176. Bryan's better on offense, I feel that Punk is better at selling.


    The way Punk sells his arm is simply fantastic. The way he'll switch out of it on headlocks or even wince when it hits the ground. It's great.


    Also I feel that Punk is better at interacting with the crowd, but Bryan gets his character through with his ringwork better. Though maybe that's because Punk's character isn't based on around wrestling as much as Bryan's is.

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  177. I'm sure if we look back at my comment history, I said during either the Wrestlemania Rant or the Raw Rant after that we'd be getting Bryan/Cena at Summerslam for the title.

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  178. You're remembering correctly. That was an awful time in our nation's history.

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  179. Yeah, that shit was stupid then and it becomes more retarded as time goes by. Especially when we consider that a lot of the people doing it probably don't even know where/who it came from.

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  180. I think there is a compelling argument for the Sting-Vader style angle, but there's also no reason they can't do that AFTER Bryan beats Cena for the title at SummerSlam. Cena can come out the next night to congratulate and endorse the new champ. Mark destroys everything and everyone and now Bryan has a challenger for Night of Champions.

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  181. I love the idea of Bryan vs. Lesnar and I totally agree they could get the "David vs. Goliath" story over.

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  182. Randy Orton: Mr. One-More-Match

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  183. Too often forgotten, but Truth was THE only good thing on 2011 Raw's before Summer of Punk.

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  184. And what the hell does it even mean????

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  185. Scream09_HartKillerJune 25, 2013 at 7:30 PM

    Well, he did get over the fact that if Cena breaks a submission hold and takes his attention off Punk, Punk can beat him. And that if the ref ignores Cena's foot on the ropes Punk can pin him.

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  186. Yeah, Limp Bizkit and Lil Jon were the top musical acts. Firefly was going to get cancelled. Crash won best picture.


    Early 2000s sucked.

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  187. Of course there were many in favor. That wasn't my point at all. I'm merely pointing out that being anti-Bush at the time didn't really "cause a stir" or set lynch mobs in motion. Sorry that this point is still somehow getting lost in translation.

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  188. There was some pretty harsh language thrown around about it being unamerican to criticize the president and shit like that.


    Lynch mob is hyperbole. But to deny the hatred and vitriol the left and right had towards each other is silly, IMO.

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  189. Yes. Ann Richards coined the term.

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  190. Crash was the mid part of the decade. It came out in May 2005, won Best Picture in 2006.

    ReplyDelete

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