I've always thought the Cena storyline would end with him somehow destroying Nexus from the inside. It almost has to. I expect a faux heel turn, a'la CM Punk with the New Breed except hopefully longer lasting, culminating with Cena dismantling the group. Maybe he'll put his career on the line against Nexus' existence. I'm not sure.
I spent several hours this morning and the first few hours of my afternoon watching NXT, Superstars, Impact/Reaction, and Smackdown, and now I feel like writing. I know only a couple people read my long posts, but I'm in the mood, so I'll give some thoughts on the aforementioned shows, plus Raw.
Ring of Honor on HDNet:
ROH was solid this past Monday, as usual. The American Wolves' split from Shane Hagadorn was finally completed, and the stage set for the upcoming American Wolves/Kings of Wrestling battle. Speaking of the KoW, I love the purple trunks with the blatant ripoff of the LA Kings logo. But that match should be incredible; I can't wait to see it.
Austin Aries accompanied Kenny King and Rhett Titus out to the ring next for a match against the Dark City Fight Club. I've met Aries and King in person, and they were cool dudes. They're also 2 of my favorite ROH wrestlers. The match was pretty good with some brutal punishment being dished out, but the finish was disappointing, with King rolling up Chavis with a schoolboy after so many near falls involving power moves.
Roderick Strong and Truth Martini. Hey, look- both of them are still terrible on the mic, and Roderick Strong is a really good wrestler who has zero charisma.
Next came the "Pick Your Poison" match in which El Generico got to pick Kevin Steen's opponent. Colt Cabana announced that Generico had chosen Steve Corino to face Steen. Steen then quit Ring of Honor. It's going to be sad with him, Austin Aries, and Tyler Black all gone.
The main event saw Christopher Daniels finally gain a pinfall over Roderick Strong, albeit controversially. Strong nailed the same kick he used to beat Tyler Black for the title, but the referee stopped the count at 2 after seeing the Book of Truth (which Strong had not used) in the ring. This allowed Daniels to recover and land the BME for the 1-2-3.
I liked the opening segment with Miz, Riley, Cena, and Barrett. Cena and Miz have pretty good chemistry together, so I was looking forward to the match right away.
It was pretty obvious who was winning the opener. R-Truth, complete with Crunkin' Eve Torres, scored the victory over Ted DiBiase following a distraction by Goldust and Maryse's clone. R-Truth qualifies for team Raw one year after representing Smackdown at Bragging Rights. I hope Goldust gets a lot more TV time.
John Morrison vs. Tyson Kidd was, like most of the matches on the show, pretty short, but it was total nonstop action. Kidd's 2nd rope Russian legsweep was very cool, and I was really surprised to see Morrison bust out the C4 and get the win with it. He should definitely use that more often when he's facing smaller opponents. Even though the move is ridiculously unrealistic, I love seeing it executed.
Santino vs. Zack Ryder for a spot on the Bragging Rights team? REALLY? I mean, I love both guys and think Zack Ryder deserves a US title push, but what has either guy done to warrant a spot on the team? As usual, Ryder loses- to the Cobra Strike no less- and Santino makes the team. Apparently, after a few weeks off, they're going back to the Santino/Tamina angle. Yay.
Gabriel vs. Orton was pretty good, and Gabriel looked like he could hang with Orton in there for 10 minutes. The finish was botched as Gabriel was supposed to miss the 450, but Orton rolled and got hit in the side and arm instead, but he got up and nailed the RKO for the win as expected.
Sheamus and Daniel Bryan had a nice little match next. Bryan got in some nifty reversals and submissions before Sheamus kicked his head off to win the match.
R-Truth's demeanor in his promo with Cena was just... odd. It didn't seem to fit Truth's character.
Once I saw Bourne come out, I got giddy, expecting CM Punk to be his opponent. The match was criminally short, although Bourne was injured, which I didn't know at the time. Still, it was a fun 2 minutes, and the post match beatdown with the Anaconda Vice was good stuff. CM Punk being the man traded for Edge should work out great for both guys.
The women's segment was kind of dumb. I usually enjoy LayCool on the mics, but this exchange did nothing for me.
The main event went about as I expected, which was good. I thought Cena still might win and then offer Miz a spot on the team, but thankfully, Miz got the win after a McGillicutter and a Husky Harris senton splash. Hopefully, those guys will become Nexus members next week. I also hope that Wade Barrett's mic skills rub off on McGillicutty. Wade's mocking of Cena to end the show was classic.
I don't think many of you watched this show when it was on SyFy. Who watches it now that it's online? Apparently, WWE.com airs it live but does not show replays, so I am forced to watch in standard def on Hulu.
The show opened with a competition to name the wrestler whose entrance music was played. Contestants had to sound air horns to buzz in. The songs were all incredibly easy to anyone who has watched WWE programming, and AJ got almost every single one while Michael Cole called her a nerd. AJ won 1900-100 in a blowout.
Naomi vs. Alicia Fox was as ugly as the 2 women are beautiful. The finish was botched, as Alicia pretty much whiffed on the axe kick, but Naomi sold it anyway, kicked out at 2, and then got hit with another one for the three count.
In the next competition, the women had a minute to talk and show their personalities. Naomi trashed Michael Cole and made fun of him for being a terrible announcer and not being Jim Ross. It was pretty amusing.
AJ clearly won the contest by putting out a "personal ad", talking about going over to her place for a hot night of playing video games and eating pizza, and be in bed by 10. That's my kind of gal right there. She said she'd post her gamertag on twitter, which she did.
Kaitlyn cut a promo about Vickie Guerrero being old. Aksana expressed her love for America. Maxine again talked about how she's always on top.
Power of the Punch returned! Naomi got an 801, which no other lady approached. Kaitlyn took a running swing and barely grazed the bag, getting her a 5. Aksana scored a 666. This was as dumb as you'd imagine.
AJ pinned Aksana in the main event. As if it wasn't glaringly obvious that it was going to happen, Goldust proposed to Aksana after the match so she could stay in the country. Aksana accepted. I like the pairing, but Aksana's gimmick and look are so close to Maryse's, and presumably Aksana would eb on Raw with Goldust.
Kelly vs. Layla to open. Oh, how far Kelly has fallen in the past couple of months. Still, she picked up the win in this match with a small package following Natalya tripping up Layla.
Curt Hawkins vs. Trent Baretta followed. Why did they go from Hawkins and Vance Archer being undefeated as a team and challenging The Hart Dynasty one week, to having them not involved in the 5 team turmoil match, jobbing them out to The Dudebusters (a team I love, but they never win) and in a handicap match to The Big Show before splitting them up? We need more good teams like those guys. The match was actually pretty good, and Hawkins won with the heat seeking elbow.
Where did Scott Stanford go? Cole is back on commentary as Primo faces the still not fired Darren Young. Here's a match with 2 guys who are pretty fun to watch in the ring, but I just can't stand either of their "characters". At least we get to see AJ. Decent little match, and Darren Young hit a variation of his spinning full nelson slam finisher. That's right- Darren Young won a singles match!
Alicia Fox has lost a lot since she dropped the belt to Melina in August, and I didn't see this match going any differently for her. Alicia did impress me by countering the Code Red into a Gory bomb, but she then missed the axe kick and Melina hooked a backslide and rolled through with a bridge for the 3 count.
I read what people were saying about this show's lack of wrestling, but ti was a lot better than NXT a few weeks ago which had no matches and a lot more dumb stuff. Hell, it was better than a lot of episodes of NXT. I've also seen much worse from other companies.
While all the talking may have been better suited for Reaction, TNA did a damn good job establishing the new world order of the company. So, apparently the group is called Hollywood Hogan's Immortals, or just Immortal. Hogan called Abyss "my son" a lot. Man, Abyss is basically Hogan's bitch and he's gotten nothing out of it but a bunch of losses and he allowed someone else to take the world title that was within Abyss's grasp. He sure got a ****ty deal. Jarrett made a wise career choice, however.
Fourtune (or Fortune, as it was spelled on Reaction, so who knows?) came out and Flair talked about how they ran TNA. Flair said he hated Hogan and there wasn't room for the both of them, and then... Flair and Hogan hugged. Man, all this heeling is going to kill business, but I can't help but love it. Flair says he loves Hogan more than all 5 of his ex-wives, who, by the way, can kiss his ass. WOO!
Hardy came out and cut a standard Jeff Hardy promo, sadly, except he talked about not caring about what the fans think. He says he didn't sell out; he sold in. Um... okay then. Sting and Nash were watching in the back, and then they got called out. Following the commercial, the Wolfpac entered the ring.
Hogan and Bischoff tried to recruit Nash and Sting. Nash, who everyone knew was on his way out (at least for now) not only went out with a PPV win, but cut a promo about how he didn't do this for the money. I like Nash, but that was some hilarious bull****ting going on there. Nash and Sting walked out, and Pope pleaded with the two of them to stay and fight the good fight. Pope said he'd continue the fight even without them. Then Dixie carter asked Nash and Sting why they were leaving. they said she didn't listen to them. She made the great point that they were speaking cryptically, and if they had told her straight up, she would have listened.
Dixie met up with Hogan and Bischoff in their office and said "****" on air. Hulk had heel security (will they ever wrestle again?) took Dixie out of the building, and Serge got punched out. Soon after, J-Woww arrived at the Impact Zone!
In the first "match" of the night, Madison Rayne challenged Tara to a Knockouts title match. She ordered Tara to lay down, and Tara complied, making Madison the new champion. Well, that was stupid. Madison's celebration was awesome, though. Mickey James came out, all like, "Really?" and took out Tara as Madison bailed. Backstage, J-Woww talked to the Beautiful People and ran into Eric Young and Orlando Jordan.
Kurt Angle came out and was interrupted by Jeff Jarrett. The promo touched on backstage politics and on Karen Angle leaving Kurt and marrying Jeff. Jarrett actually made a strong case for why he joined team Hogan. Really good exchange. Heel security attacked Angle and Jarrett beat him down until Taz stepped in and stopped him.
We finally got another match. Samoa Joe vs. Abyss, eh? Should be good. But just 2 minutes in, Abyss got disqualified for using the ring bell. Fantastic. RVD came out for the save. RVD demanded an explanation from Jeff Hardy, and Jeff referred to himself as the Anti-Christ of pro wrestling. Eric Bischoff then came out and told RVD he would face Mr. Anderson in the main event for a title shot at Turning Point.
Bischoff, backstage, told Miss Tessmacher shew as a bitch who talks too much and that she was relieved of her position, and would become a wrestler. That's going to suck. Following that, Fortune (minus Morgan and Flair) faced Pope in a 5 on 1 (tag) handicap match. Random thought: What ever happened to AJ Styles defending the TV title regularly? Pope got a good amount of offense and almost won before Beer Money took him out and Kaz got the pin.
Next was the J-Woww segment. Last week, they announced that Robbie would have his debut match this week. Then, he attacked X Division Champion Jay lethal at the biggest PPV of the year. Now, not only does he not have a match, but we got to see J-Woww get paid $15,00 for a catfight with Becky Bayless. Wee.
The main event got about 1 minute of air time before Reaction started, and then we had a non-finish after 10 minutes. That was still longer than a lot of Impact main events, and it was a decent match. Bischoff escorted the ref backstage with no explanation, and Jeff Hardy ran in and attacked RVD and Anderson with a chair. Hardy placed Anderson's arm in the chair and nailed a Twist of Fate to RVD on top of the chair and arm.
Despite the lack of wrestling, the show worked really well as far as explaining and advancing the angle from Bound For Glory. But while I love the new stable and its motivations, TNA's upper card now has the same problem as both Raw's upper card and and Smackdown's midcard- lots of heels and very few credible faces. We didn't even see a single EV2 member (or Kendrick) on the show. No X Division Champion Jay Lethal, no Tag Team Champion Motor City Machine Guns... I love heels in general, but it must have sucked to endure this show at the arena.
Bragging Rights qualifying matches for this show, with Rey Mysterio and Cody Rhodes starting off. Too bad... I wish both guys could be on the team, but hey, maybe they'll actually have a tag title match at the PPV. Rhodes kicked out of the Drop the Dime, but Mysterio nailed a 619*to the face* and got the splash for the win. Good opener.
Kaval asked for a spot on team Smackdown, and Big Show agreed to give him one if eh could last 5 minutes against Show. After that, Paul Bearer issued a challenge from backstage for a Kane/Undertaker Buried Alive match at Bragging Rights.
Jack Swagger (with the Swagger soaring eagle! Yes!) faced MVP next. MVP never wins anymore, so of course he lost in 2 minutes, tapping out to the ankle lock. Maybe they'll actually push Swagger now. Probably not. They really should push MVP since Dolph Ziggler needs credible face challengers.
Next up was a short match between Alberto Del Rio and Chris Masters. Well, this one's a no-brainer. Del Rio got the tap with the cross armbreaker. Post-match, Show (on commentary) offered Del Rio a handshake, but Alberto simply winked and walked away. Awesome.
I'm so glad Edge brought back his old entrance attire. Edge and Dolph Ziggler had a really good back and forth match that was probably the best of the night. I almost bought Dolph winning via countout after he nailed a sick Zig Zag into the steel steps, but Edge beat the count by a fraction of a second. Edge caught Ziggler with a spear as Ziggler jumped from the second rope, and Edge got the win. I'm glad Edge won, but Ziggler's getting the Jack Swagger treatment as champion.
Next up, The Big Show beat the **** out of Kaval for 5 minutes, as expected, but pretty much let Kaval qualify by not trying to pin him. OH **** ME IT'S TYLER REKS. His current get-up looks better than his old style, but this guy... ever since I saw him in ECW, I've hated everything about him. He's been my least favorite WWE superstar. And now, here he is, after 8 months off TV. Just as I feared, he squashed the beaten down Kaval and hit him with RJ Brewer's Lucha Libre USA finisher, setting Kaval up in a torture rack/burning hammer position and dropping him down into an implant DDT. TYLER ****ING REKS IS ON TEAM SMACKDOWN. WHY?!
The main event could have been good, had it lasted longer than 2 minutes. It was obvious that Kofi was going to beat Drew McIntyre after Cody Rhodes failed to qualify earlier, but this match was over in the blink of an eye. Kofi hit the Trouble in Paradise for the 3.
The Undertaker made his way down from the roof to confront Kane and Paul Bearer in the ring. Kane cut a pretty good promo before Taker interrupted him and made a rather quick entrance to the ring. Undertaker beat up Kane, then Taker set off Kane's pyro. Kane and Bearer retreated, so Taker sent out a lightning bolt, which caused bearer to drop the urn. The camera closed up on the urn as the show went off the air.
That was a lot longer than I expected, but like I said, I finally felt like writing again. Good wrestling this week from Raw and Smackdown, and good comedy from TNA.