Wrestling shows (AEW/IMPACT/NWA/ROH and others)

urbwar

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On to NXT. They started off hotter than AEW. Finn Balor vs Adam Cole for the NXT title, with no commercial breaks. This was ppv caliber booking for tv, given these men are two of the best in WWE period. Both men have great chemistry in the ring. Being a heel vs heel match, the fans were split between both (because even as heels, both men are extremely popular with the Full Sail crowd). The return of Johnny Wrestling was a great touch to the story. From the start of the show, NXT showed AEW up. Both had great opening matches, but this one outdid the tag match in AEW. If they had done Omega vs PAC III, it might have been different.

Next up was a really good brawl between Damien Priest and Killian Dain. Dain is coming in hot after beating Pete Dunne, while Priest is still injured from Takeover. Priest is more than just a brawler though, as he is trained in martial arts, and can do some excellent kicks. Not sure the right man won, but it was still a great match.

I'm skipping the matches not show on USA, since I only catch the USA version of the show on Hulu. So we're on to the main event. Baszler vs Ripley. So much emotion leading into this match. Ripley all ready owned NXT UK, and now is trying to move on up. Baszler has beaten every major woman in NXT, and beat Bailey in the Survivor Series 3 way.

This was a great match, and both women showed why they are going to make a big impact in WWE.

Given the two title matches, and how good they were, NXT deserved the ratings win. They put on the better show, and as AEW is off next week, have a week unopposed. When AEW comes back, it will be interesting to see how they stack their show. We know Riho will face Statlander (and given Riho still wrestles in Japan, I suspect Statlander is going to win, unless Nightmare Collective costs here the belt. Which I hope not, as that would be stupid), and I hope we'll see Kenny grant PAC his rubber match. Also, Moxley will give Inner Circle his answer on their offer, which I hope leads to a few Paradigm Shifts on some IC members.

Now I need to get ready to head to the Moda Center, and get my ticket for Takeover Portland!!!!!!!
 

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Darby Allin's overhead stunner is such a great move, it's a brilliant equaliser against bigger men. At some point he's going to get pushed to the moon, and it's going to be fantastic; he's going to be a great long-term investment for them.

Statlander is rapidly becoming a favourite of mine, she's great in the ring and her gimmick is really fun. I need to find her match against Brian Cage. I'm not sure about giving her the title so quickly into her run, but I do think they need to get it off Riho and start finding the women's division some time in Dynamite, especially now they've got the tag and championship divisions running along nicely.

And yeah, I totally agree about Jericho doing his job fantastically, you can't fight him and not come out looking like a star. I'm torn between wanting to see someone beat him, because the pop they get is going to be huge and give them great momentum (Which someone like, say, Moxley, doesn't need, and could be used to push someone else), and wanting him to have a longer run putting the rest of the roster over because the character work is so good.
 

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I love the Coffin Drop.

Given Sadie Gibbs came out after what Brandi did to Kris, I wonder if we might see them team up against the Nightmare Collective. That would actually be cool, as both of them are larger women, so both could likely go toe to toe with Kong

Not sure if this is the match you're talking about, but I found this on Youtube:

I actually hope Moxley doesn't win the title. Sure, he'd be a great champion, but I hope someone else gets the gold. Of course, no one else is likely ready outside of someone from The Elite at this point in terms of name value, except maybe PAC. I like that The Elite have mostly kept out of the title picture, or when they are in it, they lose. Cody losing was to set up his feud with MJF (and get MJF over even more as a heel), and the Bucks loss to SCU was to help cement them as the top team in AEW right now.

I do like this build up with the Dark Order. They need a bigger name joining them though. Reynolds & Silver have been booked to lose so far, so they're not a big acquisition. The end of the show though makes me wish Page joins them (given his absence), but I suspect that's a swerve. Too bad the Mil Muertes gimmick is likely in limbo, because if they could get Ricky Banderas to do that here, that would be great. I think that gimmick would work perfectly with the Dark Order. I also want to see them involved with the women's division, since that initiation video showed that at least one of the masked creepers was a woman.

Oh yeah, and I got my ticket for Takeover in February. I ended up just getting it on ticketmaster, as it's pouring out, and I didn't feel like taking the train to the Moda Center in this weather. I could have saved 5 or so bucks doing so, but I was feeling lazy :tongue:
 

urbwar

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So NWA Powerrr dropped early this week. The focus was on two things: The NWA TV Title tournament, and the fallout from last week's alliance of Aldis & The Wild Cards.

The tv title tournament saw Ricky Starks vs Eddie Kingston and Colt Cabana vs The Question Mark. Also in action was a six woman match of Melina, Marti Belle & Thunder Rosa vs Ashley Vox, Allisen Kay & ODB, with whomever gets the win gets to pick their next opponent. We also had an impromptu match between Peyton Royce (who was with some woman named May Valentine) & James Storm. I guess Storm is a face again now.

The woman's match was really good. The tv title matches were short (they are going with a 6 minute, 5 second time limit), but I will say that Starks looked good against Kingston.

Also, The Pope is in the house! D'Angelo Dinero is in the NWA, and he's looking to form some kind of stable. This should be interesting! I always liked him going back to the WWE and ECW.

Eli Drake cut a promo while drinking something, then he went and sort of joined the Santa and his elf singing a Christmas song, and then Nick Aldis and his new cronies came out. Aldis was going on how he spent the last 2 years making the NWA relevant again, etc, etc. Then he called out Ricky Morton over comments he made last week. Morton chose to be the better man and offered an apology, but pointed out to Aldis that he, Gibson and guys like Flair, Race, Dusty, Road Warriors, etc, made the NWA in the first place, and not to forget that.

Tim Storm had a promo, and the Dawsons were with him (but went off camera when it came time for Storm to talk). Storm vs Aldis next week in the tv title tournament! Storm has done less for me than Starks has, but he was on fire tonight. His humbleness is endearing, and it will be interesting to see if he can get past Aldis next week. I suspect Wild Cards will try and intervene, and the Dawsons will have Storms back.

Oh yeah, and Murdoch got his contract! and the new guy, Dickie whatever ran his mouth at Murdoch, who laughed at him (He also sort of got dissed by Pope when he asked if he was the kind of guy Pope was looking for).

So 3 out of 4 matches were decent, but advancing storylines seemed the main theme here. I'm iffy on some of them, but I appreciate that they at least have some direction now. Things started off with little direction, and while we've had some weird turns leading up to and after Into the Fire.

AEW Dark is later today, but no Dynamite tomorrow (but we still have NXT). Should be interesting to see what NXT does without any competition going head to head with them
 

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AEW Dark is the last AEW show for 2019. This was a really good one.Three matches in total, plus a segment with PAC (continuing the angle where he had kidnapped Nakasawa on Dynamite last week). Plus we get Colt "Boom Boom" Cabana as guest commentator! Rumor has it he's AEW bound, which likely means he's done with the NWA.

The show opened with Sammy Guevara taking on Brandon Cutler. This was the weakest match on the card. It wasn't a squash, as Cutler got in some good offense. It was weak because Sammy was a bit sloppy at times. He executed a samoan drop type move so bad, I groaned. Cutler looked really good though. While he's pretty much established as Enhancement talent, he can go in the ring, and puts on a good match.

Up next was a four way tag team match. This was a great match featuring Best Friends, Private Party, Proud & Powerful and TH2. Orange Cassidy was not around when BF came out, but he was around in a very amusing way. This was the best of the three matches, and allowed all four teams to shine at different points in the match.

PAC was out for an interview, and he dragged Michael Nakazawa to the ring, and told Kenny to give him his rubber match or else. He faked doing a diving stomp off the top to Nakazawa in the ring (who had a chair around his neck), then he walked away. The also covered this a bit on the newest Being the Elite, where Nakazawa told Kenny he wants PAC in a match, but Kenny tells him if they just ignore him, he'll go away. Fat chance!

The Main event was Joey Janela vs Shawn Spears. Janela came out dressed as Santa. During the match, he pulled Jesus out of the crowd, who absolved him of all his sins! This was a fun match, and a great way to end AEW's run in 2019. Given there is no Dynamite this week, I'm assuming there will be no Dark next week (as there is no show to film Dark before/after). Dynamite should be interesting next week, given Riho defends against Statlander. I think it's time for the belt to change hands. Statlander is way over, and she can at least be there on a more regular basis.

Tomorrow is NXT, so we get to see how they do ratings wise without AEW to oppose them (which will likely be skewed as it is a holiday)
 

urbwar

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NXT's show was all pre-taped matches. 2 were filmed at Full Sail, and the other 2 were filmed at the Barclay's Center in Brooklyn. The show started off with Roderick Strong's open challenge for the North American Title. Austin Theory, who was Evolve Champion for 18 months answered the call. Theory is only 22, and has made waves since his Evolve debut. Strong made Theory look good (it was his NXT tv debut), which is how it should be. Really decent opening match between these two.

Next up was a hoss fight, as Dominik Dijakovic took on Bronson Reed. I've seen Reed live last time NXT was in Portland. He's got a build like Otis, but it somewhat shorter. Dijakovic is more talented than Reed, but Reed held his own in this match. One good spot was Reed headbutting Dijakovic's hand repeatedly as he went for the Chokeslam/Powerbomb combo. He sold that the rest of the match.

Bianca Belair took on a debuting Shotzi Blackheart. Shotzi is well known in the indies, but this was the first time I've seen here wrestle. A big contrast in styles (I think Blackheart would have been better off paired with LaRae, Shirai, Conti or Purrazzo), but they put on a decent match.

Two matches were taped for the Network, so I missed those (one being Conti vs LaRae, which I'd have liked to see).

The main event was Keith Lee & Lio Rush vs Damien Priest & Tony Nese. Priest & Nese are both from New York, so that was an interesting pairing. Lee came out with a Santa hat and eating a plate of cookies! He was over with the Barclay crowd too. Priest is impressive as hell, and works well with Lee (I bet he'd go well against Dijakovic too). Lee did his pop up from the apron like he did to Balor a few weeks back, except this time, he had the santa hat on!

I am seriously expecting Keith Lee to be a main event guy on one of the main rosters. He's a big guy, but he can fly, and he's agile as hell. The crowd loves him. I think his showing at Survivor Series really helped.

So decent show, but given now AEW to face off with, they didn't go all out.

Speaking of AEW, there was a big chance announced for their 1st show of 2020: Kris Statlander isn't facing Riho. Turns out she's was booked with Bar Wrestling that night in LA, so Riho is now in a four way with Britt Baker, Nyla Rose & Hikaru Shida. I'm kind of hoping Riho either retains, or loses to Rose. Statlander has beaten both Baker & Shida, so those would be retreads. A title match against Riho or Rose makes more sense. Guess we'll see next Wednesday.

Also, NJPW will no longer be airing on AXS come 2020. Only way to see them now is NJPW World
 

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After my post up-thread about that Impact episode I thought was really bad, I went back in my DVR & watched the rest of this Fall's Impact episodes. Overall, I enjoyed them quite a bit, including the silly Thanksgiving episode where they made the show like an '80s wrestling show. Of course, right as I'm getting into it is when I stopped getting that channel. :errr:
 

urbwar

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Do you mean AXS? Or that other channel they were on before it?
 

E-Rocker

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I no longer get AXS. Went to a lower tier of cable to save some money.
 

urbwar

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Ah. I don't get any, since I don't have cable (which is why I don't watch most wrestling I can't find online).

You can get it via Fite TV though, if you don't mind watching it online. I think they should it on their streaming service too, but I don't have it so I can't confirm that
 

urbwar

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Cool, thanks!
It looks like you need Impact plus to watch it. That sucks. God they are so stupid to force subscriptions to just watch their tv show. I remember when you could watch it free on Spike TV's website, which is how I kept up with it after ditching cable tv. No wonder their fanbase took such a nosedive
 

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I think the weeklies end up on I+ a few days later for free accounts? They also stream it live for free in America on Twitch, and there's a replay later in the week.

I like the look of Impact's new belt, I think the red goes really well.
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Gonna look really good around Tessa Blanchard's waist come the 12th at Hard to Kill.

Anyway, AEW's back! Sadly Statlander's busy this week, so she gets her title shot next week against the winner of this week's womens four-way - Nyla Rose, Riho, Britt Baker, and Hikaru Shida. Good match, and it was nice to actually see the world champion on TV for once. I think the other highlight was the opening match, Cody vs Allin, which totally delivered.

AEW's lack of long-term planning is starting to show, though; the rankings have been reset, but newer victories are apparently worth more than older ones? So evidently they still kinda matter? As keyfabe, either is fine, but we should have known how their systems work by now. They want to pretend to be a real sports league, so they should commit; if they're going to have a rankings reset, fine, divide the divisions up into seasons and blow it all off in a big PPV, but the audience shouldn't feel like the rules are changing every week. They also don't follow through on most of the story threads they set up last time, instead starting a couple of entirely new ones..
 

3rik

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I used to watch WWF in the late 1980s with my brother but other than that I haven't watched any US wrestling shows.

I have seen three live lucha libre shows, two in the Arena México in Mexico City and one local public event in front of the main church in Oaxaca. That last one was my favourite but the other two were also really fun.

I got the impression that US wrestling had become more about the violence aspect (barbed wire, blood, fire, etc.) , where in Mexico most shows are still mostly about high flyin' acrobatics (at least the ones I've seen live and on TV). I don't enjoy that ultraviolent stuff. I'm all about the retro superhero luchadores.

1980s WWF was fun, but also silly and shouty, whereas Mexican luchadores seem to carry themselves with a little more dignity, at least during the interviews, which I prefer.

You guys seem to know your stuff so perhaps you can fill me in and add some nuance to my ill-informed impression.
 

urbwar

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I got the impression that US wrestling had become more about the violence aspect (barbed wire, blood, fire, etc.) , where in Mexico most shows are still mostly about high flyin' acrobatics (at least the ones I've seen live and on TV). I don't enjoy that ultraviolent stuff. I'm all about the retro superhero luchadores.
There might be some wrestling in the US like that, and the major promotions might do matches that are more hardcore, but wrestling in the US is pretty mainstream now. Blood isn't used as much (in WWE for instance, they will stop a match to check on someone if they are bleeding, and if they are bleeding too much, the match doesn't continue). The fact that wrestlers have contracted blood borne diseases before (Nigel McGuinness, who does commentary for NXT/NXT UK, had his career cut short because he contracted a disease from being cut during a match), avoiding blood is something WWE pushes. AEW & RoH don't seem to mind it, but they don't have it happen alot. Most times there's a split lip, etc. Not a lot of purposeful busting open someone (Cody vs Dustin being an exception in AEW, and Bully Ray vs Mark Haskins in RoH in a hardcore match was another).

Anyway, I was beat from working during New Year's, so I'm late with my AEW Review. I think Ladybird is spot on about the women's match. I honestly felt Riho was destined to lose to Statlander, and when she had to pull out, that one of the others was going to win. I see they are doing some kind of storyline with Baker, given she ate the loss to Riho. I think Riho's lack of English really hurts her as Champion.

Allin vs Rhodes was great. I hope once he is done with MJF, we get a third match (four if they let Allin beat him). Rhodes seems to bring the best out of Allin.

Page walking around drinking all the time is interesting. I was really hoping he'd go into The Dark Order after the beatdown they did last year. No offense to Alex Reynolds and John Silver (both of whom I like), but they have no star power in AEW. Dark Order needs some names to be a real threat. I'm hoping come march, Brodie Lee (aka Luke Harper) comes in.

Dustin vs Sammy was ok. Dustin hitting a flipping piledriver to Sammy on the Apron was nuts! Why didn't WWE let him cut loose like that? I just hope Daniels doesn't lose to him next week, but I suspect he will given the hints they keep dropping that he's washed up.

The six man main event was fun, but a spot fest. The fact Page refused to come to the ring when they all asked him too makes me think he's turning, or it's all a swerve.
 

urbwar

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NWA Powerrr had a new episode too. I found it mostly so-so. Stevens had a jobber fight with Sal Rinauro, but then fought Trevor Murdoch (who won). Drake did an interview, and he dissed Anderson, which brought Colt out. Colt defended Anderson, and the crowd booed him! Anderson himself came out, and had to be held back.

They had a couple of sitdowns by the ring. Pope talking to Homicide & Kingston, Melina, Belle and Rosa (talking smack about Kay), and Kay, ODB, Vox and Steelz, mostly focusing on Belle and how Kay thinks she's being manipulated by Melina & Rosa.

Steelz then beat Belle in a match, and Melina was pissed!

Lots of mouth running from Aldis & Storm, and Aldis decides he won't wrestle Storm, so he puts in Issacs. Issacs loses, and Aldis is ticked off, and out come Rock-n-Roll Express to make Aldis even more upset. Oh, and Aldis' new faction is called Strictly Business. Storm advances in the tv title tournament.

Next week is Conley vs that new annoying guy in the tv title tournament
 

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There might be some wrestling in the US like that, and the major promotions might do matches that are more hardcore, but wrestling in the US is pretty mainstream now. Blood isn't used as much (in WWE for instance, they will stop a match to check on someone if they are bleeding, and if they are bleeding too much, the match doesn't continue). The fact that wrestlers have contracted blood borne diseases before (Nigel McGuinness, who does commentary for NXT/NXT UK, had his career cut short because he contracted a disease from being cut during a match), avoiding blood is something WWE pushes. AEW & RoH don't seem to mind it, but they don't have it happen alot. Most times there's a split lip, etc. Not a lot of purposeful busting open someone (Cody vs Dustin being an exception in AEW, and Bully Ray vs Mark Haskins in RoH in a hardcore match was another).
One thing I'll add is that, now that they're rare rather than a default, hardcore works better for storytelling purposes - if someone's willing to bleed for a feud, then it's clear that the stakes are up.

And a lot of modern wrestlers have taken inspiration from the the lucha style, so the average match is flippier and more athletic these days; you've got heavyweights doing cruiserweight stuff, and the cruiserweights are just all over the place - I love Fenix in tag matches, for example, because if he's ever offscreen then you don't know where he's going to come from but you do know it's going to be spectacular.

Dustin vs Sammy was ok. Dustin hitting a flipping piledriver to Sammy on the Apron was nuts! Why didn't WWE let him cut loose like that? I just hope Daniels doesn't lose to him next week, but I suspect he will given the hints they keep dropping that he's washed up.
A lot of moves, you can see how they're done, but I have no idea how the physics of a flipping piledriver even work, especially as even someone small like Scarlett Bordeaux can hit a good one.
 

urbwar

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One thing I'll add is that, now that they're rare rather than a default, hardcore works better for storytelling purposes - if someone's willing to bleed for a feud, then it's clear that the stakes are up.
Exactly. In RoH's Final Battle last year, Bully Ray and Mark Haskins had a sick one. Ray kept picking on Haskins, so it led to that. The match starts with Bully hitting both Haskins and his wife with a wooden board that has barbed wire on one side. Mrs. Haskins got taken to the back, but came out towards the end of the match, and nailed Bully in the balls with a cheese grater while he was sitting on the top rope, rubbing up and down on his crotch. He sold it well too. It was one of the better hardcore matches I've seen in some time

And a lot of modern wrestlers have taken inspiration from the the lucha style, so the average match is flippier and more athletic these days; you've got heavyweights doing cruiserweight stuff, and the cruiserweights are just all over the place - I love Fenix in tag matches, for example, because if he's ever offscreen then you don't know where he's going to come from but you do know it's going to be spectacular.
It helps that both Mexico and Japan have brought in American wrestlers, who picked up their styles. When some went on to become trainers, they passed it along to their students. I feel US based wrestling is really hybridized now thanks to the influences of Japanese Strong Style and Lucha Libre. WWE has been behind the curve on that, but NXT has been good at utilizing it more. With Heyman in charge of Raw, he's been working it in more I think.

A lot of moves, you can see how they're done, but I have no idea how the physics of a flipping piledriver even work, especially as even someone small like Scarlett Bordeaux can hit a good one.
I find it similar to the flipping powerbomb. It looks like the person hitting the move is pulling his opponent over like a sunset flip (the move was originally called the Sunset Powerbomb), but the opponent actually moves with his attacker to make the move work (unlike the sunset flip, where you basically flipped over the opponent and caught them by the waist, forcing them to the mat into a pinning position).

I still remember when Petey Williams was like the only guy to do it for a long time. Then Teddy Hart started using it, and then it seemed like every cruiserweight was doing it. Like the DDT and Shooting Star Press before hand, one guy made it cool, then everyone else started doing it too. It's become a "trendy" spot move these days. Its still cool as hell though, because if done wrong, I'm sure the opponents neck would get broken (as bad if not worse than a regular piledriver would do to someone)
 

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AEW Dark was a short episode this week. Of the two matches, only one is worth watching. Kong had a squash match to start off the show, so it's worth a pass if you don't care for the Nightmare Collective storyline.

The other match was SCU vs Kip Sabian and Hybrid Two. The continuing story about Daniels losing to Pentagon, and how he might be washed up continues. He owned up to botching a move during that match, and during this match, he hesitated before doing his patented moonsault (and it cost him).

Chuck Taylor was doing commentary with Excalibur this week. He did a good job.

So a so-so show, but if you got a little over 30 minutes to kill, check it out for the six man match.
 

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I enjoyed last week's AEW. And Page had a good point when he said, "You don't touch a man's drink." :tongue:
 

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Impact was mainly promos for Hard to Kill this week, but Eddie Edwards vs Michael Elgin was a solid match, and the others were just good. They're against each other again on Sunday, so they'll have to pull something big out.

Impact's poster team is also doing great work - the red / black-and-white designs look great for the faces / heels (And I hadn't actually noticed until now that all the current champions are heels!).
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On to NWA Powerrr for this week. We start off with a Tim Storm promo, and I give him credit; Storm knows how to cut a great promo. I may have issues with his in ring skill, Kamille comes out, grabs the mic, says nothing, but slaps Storm hard. Funny segment because she teased saying something. It's getting old though.

Match wise, we get Zickie Dice vs Caleb Konley in the tv title tournament. Konley's the better wrestler, but Dice seems to be a guy they want to push. Decent match, but nothing to go raving over.

Thunder Rosa had her match with ODB. Rosa looked really good here, and the crowd was split between her and ODB. Tangental note about Rosa: She won the Joshi Tokyo Pro title this past weekend in japan. She's the first Gaijin champion in that promotion, so kudos to her for being the first.

We find out the last two matches in the tv title tournament: The Dawsons have to fight each other, and Trevor Murdoch gets Tom Latimer of the Wild Cards.

an empty studio sit down with Stevens and Question Mark happened. I wasn't into it as Stevens is doing what Aldis did in claiming there are no good contenders in the NWA for his belt right now, and that he and Question Mark are going to win all the gold down the road.

Nick Aldis comes out and the studio crowd wouldn't let him talk by booing and calling him coward (which is what Storm called him in his promo earlier). When he did get to talk, Aldis cut a good promo, though some of it was ripped from Ric Flair's NWA days. To prove a point about not being a coward, set up an exhibition match against Ricky Starks, with a time limit of 6:05 (the time limit for the TV tournament matches). Before the match, he claimed he was going to make Starks a star. I've been critical of Starks since Powerrr debuted; I find his character to be a cruiserweight Rock wannabe, and for the most part, I've been less than impressed with his matches prior to Into the Fire. Since the ppv, I admit he's found his groove. His match against Kingston was good. His match vs Aldis was good. He really upped his game for this match. He even dove out of the ring at Aldis, and there are no mats on the floor. The end result saw Aldis having Starks in a cloverleaf submission. Ricky Morton came out and asked Aldis to give Starks five more minutes. Aldis refused, so Morton challenge him to a five minute match. Aldis again said no, and the crowd went off on him with more coward chants

The Main Event was supposed to be a three way tag match. James Storm & Eli Drake vs Ken Adnerson & Colt Cabana vs Wild Cards. Wild Cards no showed, so it was just the other two teams. Drake wouldn't shake Colt's hand, but he did fist bump him.

After that match, Aldis comes back out and says he pulled Wild Cards because he's the champ, and he runs the place. He then calls out the Rock-N-Roll Express, and makes Morton an offer. A six man match between teams they each captain. If Morton's team wins, he gets a shot at the world title. However, Neither of them will be in the match, so there is no excuse if the shot happens that either man is hurt. He tells Morton to find 2 partners for Gibson, and introduces the man who will team with Wild Cards....Big Poppa Pump himself, Scott Steiner! Needless to say The R-N-R didn't look happy.

This was a good show. 3 of the 4 matches were well done (and the last wasn't bad, just not great). Excellent promos continuing the main storyline of various people vs Strictly Business. Aldis helping elevate. Next up is Dynamite, followed by NXT
 

urbwar

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I actually had some things at work that needed doing after finishing Powerrr, so I wasn't able to check out Dynamite. I did watch NXT when I got home, and it was good.

The show starts with Rhea Ripley. She didn't get far into her promo when Toni Storm came out. Storm has a chance to win back the NXT UK Women's title Sunday, and if she does, she wants a shot at Ripley's belt (she even pointed out how she beat Ripley twice before). We then get a succession of challengers: Kay Lee Ray, Io Shirai, Bianca Belair, and finally Candace LaRae. Ripley starts a brawl, and we get a six woman tag (Ripley/Storm/LaRae vs Ray/Shirai/Belair). Belair ticked off Shirai who dropkicked her, which cost their team a match. Next week is a woman's battle royal to determine the next #1 contender.

Imperium vs Forgotten Sons and Gallus vs Undisputed Era were the two first round matches in the Dusty Rhodes classic. The first match was ok but Gallus and UE had a great fight.

We get two vignettes from Tommaso asking Cole for a title match. I suspect this will be the main event at Takeover Portland. Speaking of that ppv, Johnny Gargano cut a killer promo about Finn Balor. Balor came out and told him if Regal give the ok, they'll face at that show. Now I'm really glad I am going to that ppv!

Main event was Lee, Djakovic, Priest and Cameron Grimes in a fatal four way to determine the #1 contender for the North American title. This was a great match, and the right man won. All four men here should be future champions though.

Also, we are going to see the return of Time Splitters! Alex Shelly is teaming with Kushida for the Dusty Rhodes tournament. As a team, they are former 2 time IWGP Junior heavyweight tag team champions. This should be fun. Oh yeah, and the Matt Riddle/Pete Dunne team has a name: The Broserweights. I love it!

This was an action packed hour. NXT is keeping the pressure on AEW, and I think the tide might start to turn soon.
 

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Finally caught Dynamite. After seeing NXT first, this one was kind of so-so for me. I liked Brandi on commentary, but I felt the whole match being interrupted made me less into it. They've been building to this match for weeks, and the payoff wasn't worth it for me. The male member of the NC did nothing for me. Riho took him out so easily, he came off as a joke. On the other hand, I like we get to see Kong take on some real opposition next week, and Baker not bothering to help Riho & Statlander when they were getting a beatdown. I see a heel turn coming a mile away.

Daniels vs Guevara was ok, but the Dark Order bit afterwards was kind of meh. They keep putting them up there with the main guys, but they aren't on their level. They need members who are more than lower midcard to enhancement talent to make it work, as this is failing. I hope when Brodie Lee (aka Luke Harper) shows up, he gives the DO some star power.

The tag matches were fun, but didn't grab me like previous ones had. I thought Lucha Bros vs Brotherhood the better of the two. This situation with Page & Omega is interesting though, as is Pac continually picking on Nakazawa.

The six man was fun, as Marko Stunt was way over in his home town, and Orange Cassidy showed a little more in the ring than we've seen in the past. MJF was funny as always (love the Bang! comment he made to DDP about one of his daughters). He's the perfect dickish heel.

I felt the end segment with Moxley & Inner Circle was too long.

So yeah, I was more jazzed with NXT this week
 

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Finally caught Dynamite. After seeing NXT first, this one was kind of so-so for me. I liked Brandi on commentary, but I felt the whole match being interrupted made me less into it. They've been building to this match for weeks, and the payoff wasn't worth it for me. The male member of the NC did nothing for me. Riho took him out so easily, he came off as a joke. On the other hand, I like we get to see Kong take on some real opposition next week, and Baker not bothering to help Riho & Statlander when they were getting a beatdown. I see a heel turn coming a mile away.
Yeah, it should have been a good match between them (The first half certainly was), but the interference killed it. And I agree about Luther, if you're introducing a character like that then they need to sell why they're a threat. I know she's the champion and all, but it should take more than one waif-fu attack to put a monster down.

AEW is quite faction-heavy, and if we've seen the start of another faction (Shida / Swole / Statlander / Riho / Kiss) then cool, but I'm not sure they have enough in the division for it. We'll see how the story evolves.

Daniels vs Guevara was ok, but the Dark Order bit afterwards was kind of meh. They keep putting them up there with the main guys, but they aren't on their level. They need members who are more than lower midcard to enhancement talent to make it work, as this is failing. I hope when Brodie Lee (aka Luke Harper) shows up, he gives the DO some star power.
We haven't seen the Dark Order actually do anything for anyone yet! They'd work better if they had been more behind the scenes for a while, darker and more occult, than like a self-help group gone wrong.

The six man was fun, as Marko Stunt was way over in his home town, and Orange Cassidy showed a little more in the ring than we've seen in the past.
Cassidy's lazy dropkick was a thing of beauty. And I like Kenny Omega, but don't really feel Page's storyline at the moment... but it also had Private Party doing their stuff, so I'm not complaining.

I loved the Inner Circle segment - I thought they pulled it off really well (Other than Jericho re-using one joke that didn't land right), and I was surprised it was the end of the show.
 

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Yeah, it should have been a good match between them (The first half certainly was), but the interference killed it. And I agree about Luther, if you're introducing a character like that then they need to sell why they're a threat. I know she's the champion and all, but it should take more than one waif-fu attack to put a monster down.
Exactly. it also doesn't help that Excalibur tries to say who the person is, kind of stumbles (like he's not sure), and Tony & Jim act clueless about the reveal.

AEW is quite faction-heavy, and if we've seen the start of another faction (Shida / Swole / Statlander / Riho / Kiss) then cool, but I'm not sure they have enough in the division for it. We'll see how the story evolves.
At least now Kong gets to fight some people who can fight back. Though I wish Aja Kong was around, given their facedown back in July.

The rumor is that the group you just mentioned are the ones who will oppose Nightmare Collective, which means they need one more member. Maybe Baker will be the next one, given her recent attitude change

We haven't seen the Dark Order actually do anything for anyone yet! They'd work better if they had been more behind the scenes for a while, darker and more occult, than like a self-help group gone wrong.
Exactly! Now if Reynolds & Silver would win some matches, then it would show being in the group actually works. They are a talented tag team, so letting them actually get some wins would help.

Cassidy's lazy dropkick was a thing of beauty. And I like Kenny Omega, but don't really feel Page's storyline at the moment... but it also had Private Party doing their stuff, so I'm not complaining.
I loved the splash he did, where they commented that it looked like he fell asleep while doing it.

I loved the Inner Circle segment - I thought they pulled it off really well (Other than Jericho re-using one joke that didn't land right), and I was surprised it was the end of the show.
I still thing it ran too long. I think they could have cut it down a few minutes, and it would have been more effective. Especially since we all knew he was going to turn them down (having him join would make no sense, given his lone wolf act since he showed up)
 

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Since @Ladybird likes Private Party, figured I'd share this. House of Glory wrestling from NYC posted their 9th anniversary show to Youtube. Private Party are home grown talent from HoG, and are in the main event vs Lucha Bros for the tag titles. This promotion was started by Amazing Red and his cousins (if anyone remembers the tag team the SAT, that's them) and Brian XL (a friend of theirs). It got bought out by rapper Master P. I never got to see this promotion live (I was always more into Pro Wrestling Syndicate/WrestlePro from NJ), but they've got some good talent. Production values are better too; I saw a show during Wrestlemania weekend, and it wasn't as good as this show.

You've also got some well known indie talent appear on the show, like Low Ki, TJP, JT Dunn, etc. I'm only half way through the show, but I think it's worth a watch if you have time

 

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So, watching the House of Glory show....

They have a wrestler named Smiley, who is a former champion. He used to wear a mask that was a smiley face, but has a new one now. Anyway, he has some followers who wear versions of his mask, and straightjackets. They commentators call them inmates from the asylum. Now we know where Dark Order got the Creepers from. He's in a suicidal six way match, and another competitor is Leroy Greene, who plays a hand held video game while wrestling. This guy needs to be Orange Cassidy's tag team partner. Plus Amazing Red is in the match! One of my favorite cruiserweights from the 2000's. He's basically the NYC version of Rey Mysterio.

Speaking of Dark Order, the rumor is that once his contract is up in March, Broken Matt Hardy is going to show up in AEW as the true leader of that group. That would give them the star power they need. Nothing against Evil Uno, who I think is decent on the mike. He just isn't that well known to be effective as a leader.
 

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There's new gossip about Tessa Blanchard - the usual stuff that you hear about people these days - been coming out today, from women from a lot of promotions. And as ever, accusations are not evidence, but quantity is sometimes a quality of it's own. So... we'll see what happens. Impact don't take knee-jerk actions - they've got quite a few folk with iffy backgrounds in their roster - so I'm pretty certain they already knew about this and had Had Words with Tessa (And some of her Impact colleagues are defending her), but they've wrote themselves into a tight corner with this main event if they do decide to do something.

Oh, and Ethan Page apparently has the shits. So... that's going to make his tag match tonight interesting! Apparently it was the same at Friday's show, and his partner Josh Alexander did most of the work in their match.
 

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Since @Ladybird likes Private Party, figured I'd share this. House of Glory wrestling from NYC posted their 9th anniversary show to Youtube. Private Party are home grown talent from HoG, and are in the main event vs Lucha Bros for the tag titles. This promotion was started by Amazing Red and his cousins (if anyone remembers the tag team the SAT, that's them) and Brian XL (a friend of theirs). It got bought out by rapper Master P. I never got to see this promotion live (I was always more into Pro Wrestling Syndicate/WrestlePro from NJ), but they've got some good talent. Production values are better too; I saw a show during Wrestlemania weekend, and it wasn't as good as this show.

You've also got some well known indie talent appear on the show, like Low Ki, TJP, JT Dunn, etc. I'm only half way through the show, but I think it's worth a watch if you have time

Thanks for linking that, I really enjoyed watching it! I don't know what the hell Marq Quen did to fall out with gravity, but somehow he just seems to get more hangtime on anything than should be possible, it's amazing.
 

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Thanks for linking that, I really enjoyed watching it! I don't know what the hell Marq Quen did to fall out with gravity, but somehow he just seems to get more hangtime on anything than should be possible, it's amazing.
They have another show posted to their youtube channel from last year (their 8th anniversary show as well). Like I posted earlier, they had a show Wrestlemania weekend last year that I found so-so production wise, but it seems Master P has put some money into that side of things. They have the talent, both home grown and from some established indie stars. I wish I had gotten to see a show sometime, but their shows always conflicted with other promotions I was into (or a week before or later), and I could only afford going to so many live events at the time
 

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There's new gossip about Tessa Blanchard - the usual stuff that you hear about people these days - been coming out today, from women from a lot of promotions. And as ever, accusations are not evidence, but quantity is sometimes a quality of it's own. So... we'll see what happens. Impact don't take knee-jerk actions - they've got quite a few folk with iffy backgrounds in their roster - so I'm pretty certain they already knew about this and had Had Words with Tessa (And some of her Impact colleagues are defending her), but they've wrote themselves into a tight corner with this main event if they do decide to do something.

Oh, and Ethan Page apparently has the shits. So... that's going to make his tag match tonight interesting! Apparently it was the same at Friday's show, and his partner Josh Alexander did most of the work in their match.
Ok, found a story about it. Interesting to see what happens. Even if true, Impact has built this up as a possible historic moment. I think if Sammy retains, it will go bad for them. Guess we'll find out

Also, some sad news to report. La Parka II (the current one, not the one who was in WCW) passed away. He had been suffering from injuries he sustained during a match with former RoH world champion Rush
 
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Ok, found a story about it. Interesting to see what happens. Even if true, Impact has built this up as a possible historic moment. I think if Sammy retains, it will go bad for them. Guess we'll find out
Yep. If Sami wins, the last six months or so of storyline will have meant nothing, they'll have wasted a lot of time on a big story that went nowhere. If Tessa wins, they're hardly the first federation to book an (Allegedly) horrible person as champion, but it will look very bad for them with these allegations so in the open and fresh.

The stage for tonight is great though...
1578876613008.png
...that AXS TV money is really getting well spent.

I won't get to actually watch the show until tonight after work, but I'm really interested to see what happens..

Also, some sad news to report. La Parka II (the current one, not the one who was in WCW) passed away. He had been suffering from injuries he sustained during a match with former RoH world champion Rush
Very sad news. It shows how easy it is for even an experienced professional to misjudge a move.
 

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I used to really dislike long promos, period. MJF plays heel so incredibly well, though, that I'm growing to enjoy his long promos.

And if Tessa really is a shitty person, I hope she becomes a better person. And I wonder if this situation will affect her local booking for the next Warrior Wrestling show.
 

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I don't know what got into the Impact roster this weekend, but Hard to Kill was brutal. Ace Austin and Trey Miguel, normally both quite athletic high-flyers, put on a brawl (With Ace legitimately suffering a punctured eardrum). Madman Fulton suffered a legitimate (If accidental) shoulder dislocation. Brian Cage didn't even make it to his match - he picked up an injury a few days before, so RVD jumped him before the bell and knocked him out. I think the highlights would be Ace vs Trey, Eddie vs Elgin, Mack vs The North...

...and then there was the main event. Holy shit. Sami and Tessa pushed each other's bodies and characters to the limit in a tense and thrilling slugfest that really did feel like a great conclusion to this entire storyline.

And if Tessa really is a shitty person, I hope she becomes a better person. And I wonder if this situation will affect her local booking for the next Warrior Wrestling show.
From people she's working with now, it sounds like she has got better - people like Kiera Hogan, for example, aren't backwards in coming forwards. And if this is coming out to the public, it wouldn't have been a secret in the industry. You can't go back and undo the past, and if you've wronged someone they're under no obligation to forgive or forget, but you can be better in future.
 

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Yep, good points.

I wanted to get Hard to Kill but I just don't have money for PPVs at the moment. I will look forward to watching it sometime in the future.
 

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From people she's working with now, it sounds like she has got better - people like Kiera Hogan, for example, aren't backwards in coming forwards. And if this is coming out to the public, it wouldn't have been a secret in the industry. You can't go back and undo the past, and if you've wronged someone they're under no obligation to forgive or forget, but you can be better in future.
The issue is her denial of past events ever happening. If she had owned up to her past transgressions, the backlash wouldn't be so vocal. She doubled down on her innocence, and that brought out even more people. Given how diverse a group her accusers are, I'm inclined to believe their true. I remember reading years ago she was a little difficult to work with, but nothing like what is coming out now. Even if she has grown, she hasn't grown enough to admit she made these mistakes, and apologize for such horrible behavior.
 

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So I'm watching the latest NXT UK Takeover: Blackpool II. It's been a decent show so far. I guess Mustache Mountain are being split up; Trent Seven was the opening match (he lost), and Tyler Bate was in the middle (he won, and the camera panned on Triple H, Regal and Johnny Saint in the balcony giving him a standing ovation). I suspect Bate might be moving stateside full time like Dunne has. He had a great match with Jordan Devlin (who I feel is under rated). The tag team ladder match and women's title matches were both good.

I'm watching the main event right now, and it's been pretty good. Joe Coffey has gotten better since I last saw him. WALTER is a beast. I want to see him against Djakovic, Dain or Lee in WWE. There's a great ref bump when WALTER dropkicked the ref after Coffey side stepped. I wouldn't say it was as awesome as the Djakovic/Lee matches, but it comes pretty close. I love these big men who can move in the ring, and do more than just brawl.

And the aftermath! Undisputed Era in the house! Imperium gets totally laid out, and WALTER got punked out by all four UE members. Great set up for the 8 man tag at Worlds Collide. The crowd loved it, and seemed to be fully behind UE. Not bad show. Only 5 matches, and no fillers among them. I'm hoping we get Imperium vs UE during the Dusty classic in addition to the Worlds Collide match.
 

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NWA Powerrr was back tonight. Ashley Vox took on Melina in a short, but decent opening match. R-N-R have the big six man tonight, but won't reveal their partners. Zicky Dice and Ricky Starks get into it about the tv title tournament, and Starks made Dice come off like a total idiot.

Video of Aldis attacking Scurrill at an RoH event is shown, as well as him and Latimer at the announce both. Villain Enterprises confronts them and now Aldis and Flip Gordon from RoH are going to face off at Hard Times! Looks like a cross-promotional feud between the two factions is in the making (which makes sense, as Scurrill's new RoH deal lets him work with NWA and New Japan, and maybe build a relationship between RoH and AEW)

A video piece on Ken Anderson and Colt Cabana aired; I suspect their partnership might be in jeopardy. The Pope was at ringside for Kingston & Homicide vs Stevens and Question Mark. Homicides bad shoulder cost them, and Pope left with a look of disappointment on his face. Brother vs Brother as Dave & Zane Dawson clashed to see who would move on in the tv title tournament.

Strictly Business are out with Big Poppa Pump, and he trashed talked the fans and the R-N-R before they hit the ring. R-N-R are out, and the first partner is Eli Drake, followed by Tim Storm! Aldis is livid. While not a great match, Drake was the face in peril here. Kamille tried to interfere, missed and at the post for her trouble. Latimer was busy checking on her, allowing Drake to hit his finisher on Issacs, and Gibson rolls him up for the three count. Aldis now has to defend the title against Ricky Morton!

Sorry for the cliff notes review this week; I was a little distracted while watching it, so i kept it short this time around. Up next is AEW Dark!
 
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