Three matches, all commentated by Josh Mathews, one with Matt Striker, two with Scott Stanford. I guess I should put “commentated” in quotes with the whole Mathews thing since he spent a lot of time staring in the blankness. Wow.
4. Yoshi Tatsu vs. Hunico
I know little kids like Yoshi, but it surprises me when he’s out there and wrestling how much the crowd gets behind him. This is another moment where Yoshi gets the cheers and Hunico gets the boos, but Yoshi’s are much louder and clearer. Everyone accuses WWE of piping in sound, but it’s rarely done on NXT or Superstars. Of course I think people want to go straight to “piped in sound” when they don’t want to believe someone they like or dislike is truly getting pops or boos. Anyway, Yoshi was over and the crowd loved him, but you knew this match was about Hunico, who is an incredible wrestler. Unfortunately they decided to saddle him with a stereotype gimmick, and we know what happens to those with a stereotype gimmick. Obscurity. No matter if they are incredible, or not-so-incredible.
3. Alex Riley vs. Jinder Mahal
Riley needs to stop with the grenades. Those aren’t “A-Bombs”. Other than that, though, Riley comes out and gets the crowd ready to scream his name. He’s one of those guys that the internet laughs at but a crowd goes wild for. He has the looks, he finally has the moves, and they put him up against Jinder Mahal. I complain constantly Mahal always wins with the Camel Clutch (as he does here as well) but to be honest Mahal has come along way since his over-push a year ago. And while Mahal always wins with a Camel Clutch he doesn’t gloat over his enemy as they have fallen and pose before going for it. Riley was down and Mahal went straight in to the submission. Sometimes there is no time for gloating.
2. Zack Ryder vs. Jack Swagger
Wow. SWAGGER WON!!! Swagger won, Swagger won, Swagger won! I literally jumped off of the couch and cheered. Swagger is an excellent wrestler and deserves to beat down someone for once. I honestly did not see his win coming. He was dominant through most of it, which usually means the face needs to superman up and take the win. I like Ryder, so this isn’t a dig on him, but Ryder gains nothing from the win over Swagger other than the loud cheers that accompany him already to the ring. Instead this match was able to show off the Swagger Skills which people blatantly ignore. Excellent match.
1. Scott Stanford
Revving up his engines and ready to go right out of the dock Scott puts on a cap of enthusiasm and embraces the matches in front of him. Managing to sound excited for every match up and like he’s never seen anything as incredible as this match in his life he makes you believe each of these men are stars worthy of the main event on Raw. Yes, he tells stories, like how Jinder Mahal had once dated Aishwarya Rai, one of these most famous Bollywood actresses who might be one of the most beautiful women in the world, but he adds to the character of the wrestler that does not get developed on screen in matches. He paints a picture of Mahal that no one else sees and you can now look at Mahal, or Swagger, or even Ryder with a new light. Scott may appear random at times but you come away with something that you didn’t have going in and you’ll remember it later.
Last week I was losing faith in Superstars. This week it decided to renew it. That does not mean the show was less predictable because going in you knew who was going to win every match of the four, but the moves were more exciting, the commentary more interesting, and let’s face it, not having to see Triple H attacked again was dazzling. But, this is about the four best things of Superstars, so let us recap those:
4. The Bella Twins
Slinking their way down in the ring in sensual catsuits that make a man drool, The Bella Twins outshine their opponents in everything from appearance to style. The Bella Twins have stopped trying to be their own version of LayCool and decided to take a different approach. Sexing it up they turn it around in personality by being as childish as possible when facing Kelly Kelly and Eve. They put their finger and thumb up and out to make “L’s” at the girls, they give childish taunts of, “Nyah, nyah,” and one of the Bella’s covers her ears when Eve is screaming. It is a perfect position for these women. They seem to have found what they are comfortable with and instead of trying to come up with some over the top insults that fall flat the second or third time around they just go with the first thing that pops into their heads.
3. Air Boom vs. JTG and Primo
I asked two guys the other day when I started becoming such a JTG fan. They told me it was likely because I was watching him against Percy Watson and Titus O’Neil. After watching this match I’m convinced I’ve just become a JTG fan over time. Air Boom and JTG and Primo work fluidly together. Kofi flies high but seems to keep himself a little more in control of his moves while Evan does what he does best. But Primo and JTG both show that they can keep up with the fast-paced, high flying men in this match. Haven’t seen much of Primo lately? You know you miss him.
2. Cody Rhodes vs. Ted Dibiase
First off, stop whining that Cody Rhodes is on Superstars. Cody Rhodes is given a chance to get a win after he’s been fighting and losing recently. He does not even need it as it seems an entire regime is behind the man. Cody Rhodes is the opening match of Superstars and looks incredible. It’s not really a drop when he was featured on the pay-per-view just on Sunday. It’s an opportunity for this man to do moves that had me rewinding to watch it again. Dibiase works well with him and between the two they put on more than a decent match. We knew Cody would win, and still it was an amazing victory.
“Cody’s back might be disfigured!” – Korpela
“I’m just a loser who likes to conjugate verbs.” – Striker
1. Scott Stanford (and Josh Mathews)
I tend to put Scott Stanford at number one for good reason. He’s the best. The. Best. Don’t argue, you know it’s true. A few weeks ago though I complained that Josh Mathews did not seem to want to play along with Scott’s hilarity. In the weeks since Mathews has proven that he can keep up with Scott. His snorts of derision, his vocal hurts when a man is taken down, and his general attitude have seemed to have a facelift that is giving these two a run for best commentary team. And I could not be more glad of it. The two of them tell a story with every person who enters the ring and draw you in. I’m glad to see these two working together, and almost seemingly against Striker and Korpela. Now that could be an interesting commentary rivalry, if just because these four can do things with their barbed words without needing to embarrass themselves in the ring.
Scott has energy he was lacking in last week’s main event through their entire portion. The man can make exciting matches solid gold with his words and he sells two matches that people would not think they would want to watch as if they were main events on Raw. Yet better.
Scott Stanford’s best lines of the night:
“Welcome to the Raw portion of the program, that means the better looking duo.”
“This guy, JTG, is so fresh he sleeps in a ziplock bag.”
“JTG is so cool I understand that called him to play Fonzy in the remake of Happy Days.” Josh: “That is completely untrue.”
“I’m corny to say the least, going way back to Happy Days.”
“All I have to say is Holy catsuits, Batman!”
“How many people do you know that could come out in catsuits like that?” Josh: “Two.” Scott: “Nikki and Brie?” Josh: “Yup.” Scott: “I thought you were going to say Jack and Matt Striker but-” Josh: “They are the furthest thing from my mind as we prepare for this Diva Main Event.”
“The Bella Twins, let’s just call them the Sisters of Seduction.”
“Kelly, Rikishi style!”
“Yeehaw we’re here in Texas baby, yeah.” Derrick Bateman opening up NXT for us this evening.
This week NXT picked itself back up from last week. It decided it was not going to do the same thing, entirely. While a few matches were familiar there was enough to keep the pace going that NXT found itself more entertaining than Raw.
As always, my top 4 reasons to watch NXT:
4. Lack of the Recap
Perhaps Raw understood the complaint. After showing Triple H being attacked by Kevin Nash when it happened then two recaps during the Monday night show perhaps the writers understood we did not need to see it again. Of course there was a Raw recap but I found myself celebrating that it was John Cena saying he chooses The Rock. And the spittle incident was cut as best they could. Less recap on NXT this week than usual. That earns it points.
3. Tyson Kidd, Curt Hawkins, Matt Striker
During the show Matt Striker hands to Hawkins a notice of suspension for one week, telling him not to worry about it since he was already injured and unable to work. Tyson tells Striker not to insult someone holding a cane. I love watching Striker in a more active role on NXT than the “Let me announce a few challenges,” role. Tyson Kidd has his chance to shine on NXT and proves it when he goes out to the ring to compete against Jey Uso. The Usos have a slightly tweaked entrance this week. They still give their chant but they have drum beats behind them and after they complete their chant a rap starts. It’s better than silence following them to the ring. I love Jey Uso but I found myself rooting for Tyson Kidd. This is further pushed by the fact that he had Curt Hawkins in his corner.
2. Kaitlyn, AJ, and Tamina
This NXT was too great and giving it four reasons was hard. So the girls are all together. Why? Because each one deserved her time to shine. Kaitlyn and AJ start off their scene talking to one another and Kaitlyn brags about how she is going to win against Tamina, who ends up standing right behind her. And old joke but it works so well for these women. Kaitlyn turns to Tamina and says, “You are surprisingly stealthy for such a… tall person!” Kaitlyn and Tamina proceed to put on a solid match that makes me wish Tamina would change her ring attire. She looks like she is dressed to go to a corporate luncheon without the suit jacket while Kaitlyn sports a new outfit that is her most flattering yet. I love both of these women and watching two powerful women wrestle, and well, makes me smile.
1. Derrick Bateman and Maxine
Derrick is consistently at the top of my list, for good reason. This week he has to be paired up with Maxine because there was so much good about NXT some had to be condensed. During Bateman’s match with Titus O’Neil, where Bateman wins thank heavens, Maxine and AJ proceed to do commentary. Jack Korpela grins like a school boy as he ogles Maxine and Maxine brushes it all off, though not unkindly, as she is a bit unkind to AJ. AJ is good on commentary, Maxine is great. Maxine gives barbs with little effort and looks incredible doing it.
While Derrick had some of the best lines of the night his best moment of the night came after his match when he had Maxine join him in the ring. He told her his love for her and then got down on one knee and asked Maxine to marry him. She proceeded to slap him, kiss him, then say yes. I was not sure if she was angry or wanted to cry or a little of both but it was the best moment in NXT history, better than Aksana and Goldust’s proposal and bomb of a marriage. I’m rooting for these two, in marriage, health, and career.
I always go with four, but an honorable mention goes to the beginning of the show.
“My by default best friend, JTG.” – Bateman about JTG “Next WD star!” – Bateman making fun of O’Neil and his inability to say “WWE”.
The show starts off with Derrick, JTG, and Maxine on one side and Percy Watson and Titus O’Neil on the other. I’m either a growing fan of JTG’s or I just really dislike Titus O’Neil and Percy Watson. Or a little of both. However Bateman and JTG seem to make a fun pairing that ended up becoming trapped in matches with these opposing men. Titus O’Neil needs to work on his mic skills and has to pander to the crowd to get pops by wearing pink bottoms and saying it was for the two women in his life he’s lost to breast cancer and for the women in the audience or watching who have also suffered. It’s a nice sentiment, but the poor man stumbles constantly over his words.
JTG and Bateman however shine with better mic skills, and then better skills in the ring. Sorry guys, even if JTG lost to Percy, he was the more entertaining of those two.
Let me start off by saying that I am not in any way anti Vickie Guerrero. In fact, I think she’s fabulous. I want Vickie Inc. to grow. If she gains Christian, if Swagger and Ziggler learn to work together, this could be one of the most interesting groups that the WWE could have, if they just tell the story correctly.
Vickie’s group is growing and so is a need for her in a storyline. Unfortunately WWE books her and her own a bit too much like they treat Miz. They do not need to win but we are still supposed to take them seriously as a threat. This is a group that needs to win, if for one reason alone: The Anti Vickie Guerrero Stable.
Enter Monday Night Raw. Nickleback finishes up and out starts an entrance we have not heard before. Ears perk up and people turn to look. When Scott Stanford walks out there will be some confusion, many cheers, and wonderment in the hearts and minds of every Zack Ryder fan. Because there is one reason for Scott Stanford to be walking out, and that’s because Zack Ryder has found his new manager.
Zack Ryder follows shortly after, joining Scott in the ring in their usual jovial fashion. These two will be all smiles when they come into the ring, even when Stanford has something serious to say. What he wants to say is that Ryder deserves a rematch. He knows that Jack Swagger and Vickie Guerrero had everything to do with Ryder losing his pay-per-view match.
Enter Vickie, Swagger, and Ziggler who will do their usual of laughing at anyone who dare to try to oppose them. Teddy Long, in perfect Teddy Long fashion, will be the one who decides to make a tag match. Stanford and Ryder have an hour before the tag match begins. If Ryder’s team wins the tag match then Ryder can have another shot at the title.
Since this is my own perfect world I’m not giving Ryder who everyone thinks he should have because he’s suddenly the face they want to push (Mason Ryan). I want someone who meshes well with the outgoing personalities of Stanford and Ryder (and I’m not taking Hawkins away from Reks right now, I’m enjoying that too much). Who would I choose then, you ask? I’m glad you asked. My answer: Trent Barreta. Trent has the personality, he has the skill, he has just been held down because, well, whatever reason WWE holds down anyone.
How are Ryder and Barreta going to win a match, you ask? Why, Stanford is going to help them cheat this time. Is it underhanded? Of course. But it’s also payback for the constant cheating of Guerrero and her minions.
I know, I’m dreaming, but this would be my own perfect little Raw.
The half an hour before a WWE pay-per-view is Scott Stanford time for me. I swear I look more forward to those little segments of him than I do to the actual show that is coming up a half an hour later.
During this particular one it dawned on me why no one else was really watching this with me except other die-hard-Stanford-fans. It’s boring. No, not Stanford, and not Korpela when he makes an appearance. The show itself does the same thing that Superstars and NXT does, which I believe is part of the biggest reason these shows aren’t doing as well as they could: too many recaps.
What’s worse? Most of the recaps are of Raw. We saw those clips when we watched the show Monday night. We saw those clips when we die hard fans watched NXT. WE saw those clips when we watched Superstars. We saw a sedated part of those clips when we watched Smackdown. Now, just a week after Raw, we have a Pre Show that is riddled with the same clips, except now it is introduced by Scott Stanford.
Scott, who livens a room with his smile and does his best to make even the mundane interesting, is the most entertaining part of these shows. Only he can get away with lines like, “The cougar’s claw are about to come out… and so are my ears.”
What the Pre Show has done well as of late is interviews. Jack Korpela, hair properly spiked, has an interview with Mark Henry that to be honest is too short. R-Truth and The Miz are even given a segment that is about the perfect length.
Considering the WWE is already paying Scott and Korpela to be there it makes more sense to use them properly. Give them time to interview these men because between the two of them they could make the Pre Show something that people were wishing they were watching instead of chalking it up to just another one of those recaps. While I have enjoyed the show more since they started putting in interview segments, and always enjoy Stanford’s introductions of what happened before the clip he is about to present, we want more.
“Thanks Jack, stay safe out there tonight.”
Once again it was time to predict a pay-per-view. No one wanted to admit going in they were not confident in their predictions, but perhaps despite all of our griping over the weeks they may have done a good job lining up this pay-per-view. Vengeance was hard to predict and for the most part had pretty good matches.
Here’s how the six of us lined up this time:
Air Boom vs. Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
Air Boom is on a roll and Swagger and Ziggler just can’t seem to work consistently together. However I can’t say Air Boom is going to win. I’m not sure if it’s my love for the two Heels in this match or what, but I’m going with Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
JackDolph. I think the titles are changing hands, and that Dolph is going to be holding 2 titles, if only for an hour. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
I HATE AIR BOOM. I FUCKING DESPISE AIR BOOM. AIR BOOM SUCKS. I HOPE AIR BOOM CHOKES TO DEATH ON A BOWL OF *censored*. DID I MENTION I DON’T LIKE AIR BOOM? Anyway…I’m giving this to Swagger and Ziggler so they can continue to strengthen Vickie’s stable. PLUS I HATE AIR BOOM. I never said my hate was rational, either. But it exists and I must acknowledge it. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
I wasn’t going to pick them, then I found out Dolph has two matches and not one. I see Ziggler leaving with gold tonight, but I don’t think they’re going to give him the status as double champion. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
AirBoom have brought interest back to the titles, Swaggler have provided good opposition for them. I reckon Swaggler will finally get the titles off AirBoom. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
This match scares me. I’m afraid they’re going to pull the trigger on the Ziggler/Swagger pairing too soon, which means they lose. I’m going to try to be optimistic and pick Zig Swagg to win. Winner: Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler
Winner: Air Boom
Dolph Ziggler vs. Zack Ryder
This is a great push for Ryder, but Ziggler is on fire. Ziggler can’t move up yet to the main title belt when there is such an array of storyline going for it already. Better to keep the title on Ziggler and still let Ryder look like a champ. Winner: Dolph Ziggler
@SirTweets_a lot Prediction:
Now this match, I have put A LOT of thought into. Follow me on this. If Zack Ryder has anybody in his corner, he will lose. If Dolph has Swagger and Vickie in his corner, and they DO NOT get banned from ringside, Ryder will win via miscommunication between Dolph and Jack/Vickie. HOWEVER. If Swagger and Guerrero get banned from ringside at any time before/during the match, Ziggles wins. Winner: Zack Ryder (because of the stips and what happened in the match)
Zack Ryder. Not saying this because you’re a Zack fan or Stanford junkie, saying it because Zack’s earned the push *and* if Cody wins against RKO, retaining the IC belt (which is more prestigious than the US one), Vickie’s stable won’t need a second win for this PPV. Winner: Zack Ryder
It may be a massive want pick at this point, but WWE has clearly noticed Ryder’s efforts. I think they might give him the US title here Ziggler has two matches, Ryder can beat him in the second match of the night. It allows the feud to continue, Ryder gets his opportunity. Winner: Zack Ryder
If WWE tease Broskis this much with a Ryder title match on a PPV and don’t give him a title people will probably give up on him (through no fault of his own). So I’ll predict Ryder for the win and maybe some kind of guff about how he’s double champion (Internet Champ) and Ziggler isn’t. That’s be interesting in my opinion. Winner: Zack Ryder
I’m terrified that Ryder wins this, which would be too soon. I’m picking Ziggler though, out of the HOPE that the WWE gets this one correct. Ziggler needs to leave Vengeance with two Titles. Ryder can take the title from him later (leading the Swagger vs Ziggler feud that I’m not quite ready for yet). Winner: Dolph Ziggler
Winner: Dolph Ziggler
Beth Phoenix vs. Eve Torres
I have nothing invested in this match at all. Letting Eve win proves nothing but that we should not take these Divas of Doom seriously. Winner: Beth Phoenix
The only Superstar that I hate more than Eve is Riley. If Eve were to win, I would have a hissy fit. Beth, in hopefully dominating fashion. Winner: Beth Phoenix
lol ok, well now that my feelings are out of the way, here’s hoping Beth. I’m not ready to let the “Divas of Doom” go yet. Especially to Eve Torres. If Eve had the ‘it’ factor, maybe, and fine, but…no. Keep that ugly-ass designed-by-a-7-yr-old title belt on Beth for now. Winner: Beth Phoenix
They just gave Beth the belt, I can’t see them taking it off her this soon. I think she’s going to get a good reign with it, and the only person I see taking it away from her, is Natalya down the road. Winner: Beth Phoenix
Beth has been champion for about 47 minutes (that’s how long it’s been since the last PPV… right?) so she’ll keep it. Maybe a Kelly heel turn on Eve cos KK didn’t get a rematch. (I admit I’ve heard rumours of a KK heel turn on the net, I’m predicting it will happen now.) Winner: Beth Phoenix
Beth needs to keep the title or they might as well scrap the entire angle and start over. Winner: Beth Phoenix
Winner: Beth Phoenix
Christian vs. Sheamus
Has Christian really won any of his feuds since losing the title? Winner: Sheamus
I think that it is finally time for Christian to be buried, and done with this “One more match” fiasco. Sheamus will win, and I foresee Christian being either an Intercontinental or Tag Champ in the near future. Winner: Sheamus
Hmm. I typed Sheamus as the winner, then backspaced. Because Vickie can’t have 3 losses in her stable in the same PPV…BUT…it really doesn’t matter *who* gets the win, Christian or Sheamus, since it’s not like either *needs* to get over…hmm. I’ll say Christian if only to have a bigger, better, badder #FELLABRATION at the end of the PPV. Winner: Christian
Not sure what they’re doing with Christian these days, but it seems as if Sheamus has been dominating most of this feud. Christian can certainly use the win here a lot more than Sheamus can at this point. Winner: Christian
They’ve managed to build an interesting feud based on nothing but the fact they both didn’t have a feud! As I’m expecting a (probably not so) surprise return in another match that means the WHC will be tied up for at least another PPV I think this feud will keep going, therefore a Christian win is needed. Winner: Christian
Christian seems to currently be the “filler heel” used to give wins to faces at ppv’s. They can’t do it to Jericho or Punk right now, so that leaves Christian and the Awesome Truth. Winner: Sheamus
R-Truth and The Miz vs. CM Punk and Triple H
R-Truth and The Miz are great, but Punk and Triple H are not going to lose to them. Winner: CM Punk and Triple H
If something important were on the line, Punk and HHH, but since it’s just a bunch of mad guys, Awesome Troof. Winner: R-Truth and The Miz
Ugh….Punk and Hunter, because Hunter can’t swallow his ego enough to lose at a PPV, even though a PPV Payday is a guarantee for him. Not breaking Taker’s streak and ‘being returned to the roster full-time’ “requires” a Triple H win. To which, I boo, hiss and throw shit. Winner: CM Punk and Triple H
This will hardly be a clean call, but I think this feud is going beyond this PPV. It should, and them stealing the win helps. Winner: R-Truth and The Miz
I don’t see anything that would make a Punk/Trips win make sense. Which if anything should mean I go straight for a Punk/Trips win, however I’ll say the WWE will get this right. Nash will return, Michaels’ (who’ll undoubtedly feature in the PPV earlier on) music will hit but it’ll all be some kind of Laurinitis screw job and he won’t come out. Miz/Truth win. Winner: R-Truth and The Miz
I only see the Awesome Truth winning if there’s a run in or Triple H turns on Punk. I’m guessing they don’t do that here, since I’m already predicting a run in during ADR/Cena. Therefore, I guess I have to go with Punk/HHH even though Miz/Truth are 8000 times better. I hope to be wrong here. Winner: CM Punk and Triple H
Winner: R-Truth and The Miz
Cody Rhodes vs. Randy Orton
I want Cody to win, but Randy’s been beaten too many times recently. They can’t have one of their big names going down so many times in a row. Winner: Randy Orton
If the match continues to be non-title, I think that Randy will win, but if the title is put on the line, Cody will win via dirty tactics. Winner: Randy Orton
In my heart, I want this to be Cody. I honestly don’t know. I know Randy’s wanting to work this program with Cody, so I’m hoping that Creative indulges him and allows Cody to go over. He doesn’t have to go over cleanly quite yet; just over. I would like to see this extend at least as long as Big Show and Mark Henry; I also wish Ted hadn’t been separated from Cody quite yet, because Legacy still has a lot of story they could be telling. But we’ll go with Cody via a DQ or dirty win as my prediction. Winner: Cody Rhodes
Hardest call really, but I think they’re going to make Cody a main event guy with this feud. I see him getting the win here, though I highly doubt we’re seeing a Cross Rhodes and three count and a clean win for Cody this time around. Winner: Cody Rhodes
Rhodes has been awesome since February and his feud with Mysterio, bringing back the classic IC title is a nice touch. The IC title means something again… but it’s not for the title, so I see Orton winning and going for the title later. Plus I doubt I’d see the day Orton loses 3 PPV matches in a row! Winner: Randy Orton
I imagine that Cody’s going to put a good fight but eat an RKO at the end. I hope the feud continues, but I don’t see Orton losing at three ppv’s in a row. Winner: Randy Orton
Winner: Randy Orton
Mark Henry vs. Big Show
Big Show made his triumphant return and now is out to get the man who took him out of the competition for awhile. Unfortunately, Big Show started this fight to begin with. I love Big Show, but I’m going with: Winner: Mark Henry
Mark Henry. He’s a steamroller, and I don’t foresee them taking his title away before Royal Rumble 2012. Winner: Mark Henry
Too soon to kill the Monster Heel Which Is Mark Henry’s Character quite yet. Otherwise, it would cheapen Randy’s character. This Big Show/Mark Henry will probably go at least 1, possibly 2 more PPVs. Then Big Show will ‘discover the secret’ of how to beat Mark …or whatever the hell. Winner: Mark Henry
I really don’t see the title going on Big Show at this point, too much work in building Henry up as a monster for him to fail now. I don’t know if it’s going to be a clean ending, as I can see this going through the next pay-per-view. But I think Henry is going to win. Winner: Mark Henry
I’ve never liked or disliked Henry during his career, neither been impressed or depressed by his work… until now. I’ve still not developed any emotion towards him but I think he’s been on top of his game. I reckon he’ll retain his title… with a win. Go to crock Show again and Kane returns to stop him (and feud with him next, hence Sheamus/Christian feud continues). Winner: Mark Henry
Henry retains. Probably not cleanly. I think the Henry/BS feud has been kind of stupid and backwards. Does that count? I hate the WWE’s standard approach to booking feuds like this. Big Show assaults Henry for no reason, but Henry is somehow the “bad guy” for retaliating. They did the same thing with Cena/ADR. Winner: Mark Henry
Winner: No Call
As the match ended with both Mark Henry and Big Show unable to continue I’ve decided to be nice and not include this match in the percentages for predictions. Personally, I enjoyed watching the ring fall even as it was being predicted on twitter.
Alberto Del Rio vs. John Cena
I guessed Cena last time, and was wrong. I want to vote Cena again because are they really going to let him not win the title back two pay-per-views in a row? However, I’m going with they will. They will be in San Antonio Texas hot off their tour of Mexico. Don’t undermine the man with the smile and accent. Winner: Alberto Del Rio.
@SirTweets_a lot Prediction:
ADR, for two reasons. I think WWE is finally realizing that the title changes hands too often. Secondly, Survivor Series is coming up soon And I don’t think Cena is gonna have the title when he teams with The Jabroni-beating, pie-eating People’s Champ, THE ROCK. Winner: Alberto Del Rio
Del RRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRrio. Why? Because I like rolling the R’s. No, lol, because I think it’s too soon to put the belt back on Cena. We all know he’ll be going into WM28 as champ, at least give us *something* different for right now. And Del Rio’s doing a decent job carrying the belt, so there’s no need for him to drop it quite yet. Winner: Alberto Del Rio
I have a hard time not seeing the belt on the line at SS, and they already confirmed Cena/Rock teaming. So ADR keeps the belt. Winner: Alberto Del Rio
This is the hardest to call. I don’t see a way ADR can keep Cena down for 10 clean, don’t see a screw that will keep Cena down for 10. Ricardo Rodriguez does a good job of screwing opponents out of matches but that’s for a close 3, how will that work for 10?
Cena winning also gives WWE the chance to have the WWE title in everything when the Rock shows up. (They made a lot of Miz doing this and the Jackman punch on Ziggler, why not do it bigger than ever before?) However I don’t see why Cena actually needs to be champion (except for that one picture). So I can’t see ADR winning, only a flaky reason for Cena winning… I’ll go for Cena on the basis that they will happily chuck the title around by having that one photo then handing it on to someone else! Winner: John Cena
ADR wins. This is probably the match featuring a run in. Cena can’t be Champion right now, but they’re not going to have him just lose a Last Man Standing Match. Winner: Alberto Del Rio
Winner: Alberto Del Rio
This pay-per-view proved to be much less predictable than the last one. Here’s how predictions went, minus the Mark Henry/Big Show predictions:
Solace – 71%
SirTweets_ALot – 71%
TheSupremeForce – 71%
Paradise_Lost12 – 42%
MarkBilly – 42%
Yawsrko – 28%
So how did you do?
“Marks, get set-” – Matt Striker opening up a challenge. I swear he said “marks”.
This weeks Top 4 is kind of jumbled together, but for good reasons. The stories and segments ended up flowing very well together. So first I give you the Top 4:
4. Tyler Reks vs. Yoshi Tatsu
3. Kaitlyn and AJ
1. Derrick Bateman
Now the reasons why it’s hard to separate these:
Number 4 isn’t as hard to separate. Tyler Reks comes out in his wrestling garb with Curt Hawkins who is sporting a cane that is stylish with his overall look. I am now wishing Curt Hawkins would just adapt the cane to be a permanent part of his look.
Tyler Reks says that as long as he is wrestling solo he will be taking out his aggression for Hawkins’ injuries during his matches. In comes Yoshi Tatsu, who needs new entrance music to go with this darker look. Tatsu is sans face paint again this week, which is a shame because even though it wipes off by the end of every match it is symbolic of him. Unless he wants to start wrestling in that mask he better bring back the face paint.
Tyler Reks is a surprisingly solid speaker for a man who looks like a surfing caveman. That is in no way an insult, I’m a fan of Reks, it’s just you come to certain expectations and when they are blown away it makes a person an even bigger fan.
Reks and Tatsu put on a solid match and look good fighting one another. This match alone could have been a reason to tune in to NXT, but then you have:
Number 3. Kaitlyn tells AJ she will get vengeance for her against Maxine and Maxine’s evil ways. Kaitlyn is still not as comfortable on the mic as she could be but she has grown since she began on NXT during season 3. Seeing her again and about to fight Maxine again had me taking notice, if just because their season 3 match was likely the worst match I had seen from two divas in a long while. This match was far beyond that match! Leading us to:
Number 2. Maxine loses her match to Kaitlyn when Kaitlyn smacks a submission on her that has me cringing just thinking about it. Despite this loss Maxine shines in character. She is Bateman’s partner, lover, and is a general upstart that despite being called “fish lips” shows she has skill and sex appeal. Maxine makes small appearances during Derrick’s bits on the show and has more personality than most divas would dare to show. Of course Maxine leads us right into:
Number 1. Derrick Bateman. It’s not secret I’ve become a huge Bateman mark since he returned to NXT Season 5, but this episode gives him the chance to show everyone else what I already saw in him. Personality: check. Skill: check. Timing: check.
Bateman starts off the show in a challenge. Oh no, Striker brought back the challenges? Only sort of as Bateman never really takes it seriously and gets himself disqualified, only to find himself having to face Titus O’Neil and Percy Watson in a tag match. But he’s left to find his own tag partner. He ends up finding that partner in JTG in a segment that had me rewinding to watch again. During this segment he talks to Kidd, Maxine, and then finally ends up with JTG. During all of it, and even through his loss, it’s hard to take your eyes off of Derrick Bateman.
Despite all of these reasons you are still refusing to watch NXT? Shame on you.
4 Top reasons to watch NXT this week
This week I suffered from something close to déjà vu watching NXT. Didn’t I see these same matches last week? Just with the opposite endings?
However that was not nearly as bad as Percy Watson and Titus O’Neil trying to tell Maxine she had “fish lips”. They sounded enough like schoolyard bullies in their segment with Derrick Bateman and Maxine that Bateman mocked them with, “LOL. This coming from the man who barks like a wounded seal.”
Despite repetitiveness and awful insulting coming from Percy and Titus the show was still stellar. Why?
4. The Return of Matt Striker
I’ve complained for at least two weeks that Matt Striker had not been coming out on Superstars. I love Striker, more than I thought I did. When I was not seeing his face on NXT it was making me angry and then I complained a lot. His return made him not just the host of the show but seems to be pushing him as the acting General Manager of NXT. Another sign that NXT is becoming less about the competition and more about characters, plot, and wrestling.
3. Maxine vs. AJ
Sure, we saw this last week. And the week before. And possibly the week before. But these two work well together in the ring and AJ bends in ways that make me cringe. I feel like every time Maxine puts her into a hold that AJ should be snapping in half. Instead she simply rolls with it and continues to fight. Maxine also sported redder hair on NXT. I said it was so she and AJ looked less like sisters. Maxine said it was because she heard Laurinaitis liked redheads and she wanted to impress him.
2. Rematch between The Usos and Curt Hawkins and Tyler Reks
The ending was predictable, last week Curt Hawkins and Tyler Reks won. It still did not stop the four of these men from trying their hardest to steal the show. They almost could if it hadn’t been for…
1. Derrick Bateman
Derrick is consistently working at becoming the best on NXT. It was pointed out early in the show that there were only two contestants left. Apparently being suspended also made Darren a non-contestant now? Derrick came in halfway through the season and has stolen the show. He has the look, he is learning the moves, and he most certainly has the mic skills. At first he seemed uncomfortable as a heel, this episode he embraced it and enjoyed every aspect of his character. Paired with Maxine you either love the two of them or hate them but you will be entertained.
Other things of note during this show is the commentating team of William Regal and Jack Korpela. Regal has always given it his all and his all is pretty great. Korpela came in the first two weeks and did not know the rhythm of the show or his commentator partner. This episode he seems to have found his rhythm and while he is still not stellar he is no longer painful to hear. In fact I would say he’s good.
And you are still not watching NXT, are you?
Don’t forget WWE NXT is available on Wednesdays at 4pm EST and then any time after that.
As with Superstars the most common thing I hear is, “I don’t watch NXT.” This one is a little more split. Some people stopped watching after season one, some stopped watching after the diva season, and some stopped watching this season because it has been endless.
Here’s what you’ve missed on this particular season of NXT: the end of the competitions, the waning message of rookies, Yoshi’s new look, Curt Hawkins, Tyler Reks, The Usos, Tyson Kidd, and William Regal showing you how commentating is done. It seems you might have also missed the return of Derrick Bateman. While Derrick Bateman may not be the best at putting on a submission hold he’s a highly entertaining man with moves that are slowly becoming more competent and fluid.
Did I mention Maxine? New hair, new ring gear, and a much better personality than previously. Now her sultry vixen and her power over Bateman all make sense.
This is no longer a show about rookies competing to be the next breakout star. This is a show with storylines and better wrestling you aren’t watching. The feuds might be laughable at times, Yoshi Tatsu and Tyson Kidd fighting over Kidd stealing Tatsu’s action figure’s leg, but believe it or not you’ll want to watch it happen.
When NXT decided it would no longer be on Tuesdays at 10 pm I found myself angry. I looked forward to this show more than I thought I did.
William Regal pretty much carries the commentating on this show. While Jack Korpela knows the moves and is good at announcing what is going on in the ring he seems to be a little green on trying to carry on a conversation and call a match. However, Korpela has grown in the few short weeks he’s been working with Regal, so I’m not giving up on him yet.
Why not give NXT another shot? What’s the worst that happens? You waste roughly 45 minutes of your time and you can say that Stanford Fan was wrong?
The best line of this week’s episode of NXT came from Curt Hawkins, “Well whoopity do, look who actually has a microphone in their hands.”
Best commentary of the show:
Regal: “Triple Heich”
Regal: “Something in the water down here, I’m stuttering more than normal.”
Regal: “My week is made. My week once again is complete. Jimmy the Gimmick is coming.”
Korpela: “JTG runs through Brooklyn at 2 am, the most dangerous parts of Brooklyn, to show that he’s afraid of no man.”
Korpela: “A Regal Stretch by Daniel Bryan.” Regal: “Probably the first time it’s been seen in about eight years.”
Too many people tell me, “I don’t watch Superstars.”
These are the same people who complain about the wrestling on Raw. The same people who say they are tired of John Cena and the 5 Moves of Doom.
WWE Superstars, which if you are from America can now only be found on you tube thanks to people like TheViperRK0x, continually has the best wrestling matches every week.
Superstars has the quality matches but it does fall into the same rut that Raw and Smackdown can: predictability. Brodus versus a local jobber? You know who wins. Daniel Bryan versus Trent Barreta? John Morrison versus Drew McIntyre? Chickbusters versus The Bellas? All have endings you would have predicted. Yet at the end of the show you still leave with a better feeling after Trent loses for the umpteenth time because boy did that man take a beating getting there! These are the matches people would pay to see and no one is watching them.
Then there of course is the commentating. I hear the collective groan out there. Anyone reading this knows that I am Scott Stanford’s biggest fan. Believe it or not, there is a reason for this, and it’s his ability.
Superstars showcases the WWE commentators that do not oversaturate Raw and Smackdown. For the Smackdown side we showcase Striker and Korpela and for the Raw side we are allotted a weekly dose of Scott Stanford and his sidekick on the show, Josh Mathews.
Matt Striker and Jack Korpela introduce us to this week’s Superstars. Superstars is where Jack Korpela feels most comfortable because he and Matt Striker have worked into a groove that works. Matt Striker has always been ace on commentary. He knows what he is talking about and knows how to be a heel announcer without going overboard on insults. His snide side suggestions are understated and often go unnoticed. Between Striker’s precision and Korpela’s detail the two give an entertaining experience that does not distract from the match in front of them.
We then move into the Raw portion of Superstars and are given the announce team of Josh Mathews and Scott Stanford. While I love Scott and could give you about one hundred reasons why he is the best announcer that WWE has to offer I will not say that this announce team is my favorite. Josh is dull. He relies too much on his facial expressions to give away that he thinks Scott is crazy with most of his comments and during Superstars it’s rare you see a shot of the announce team. While Stanford continually feeds Mathews lines that he could easily turn around on Stanford, Mathews seems to prefer the, “If I ignore him maybe he’ll go away,” approach.
While I may complain about things that happen on Superstars (I am a woman, complaining and changing my mind are my prerogative) this is the best show you are not watching. Quality matches, commentating that focuses on the superstars instead of their own abilities, and a chance to hear the best opening song WWE offers right now.
Scott Stanford’s best lines from this week’s Superstars:
“We are about to get Divalicious. I’m not only talking about AJ and Kaitlyn I’m talking about this fellow to my right, Josh Mathews!”
“Kaitlyn: kind of a hybrid between Natalya and Beth Phoenix.”
“The two count – No!”
(To Mathews) “The Bellas so far in control of the Chickbusters! No relation to what you and I used to call ourselves, the Chick Magnets.”
“John Morrison, just talking about he reminds me of Spider-Man!”
“Moonlight Drive! Haven’t seen that one in years from John Morrison. Pulled that out of his bag of tricks.”