The Best Of?

Seamus and Cesaro are currently embroiled in a Best of Seven series, the winner gets a title shot. Oh boy…

When the series was announced, I had mixed feelings because I despise Sheamus but I absolutely love Cesaro. It sounds weird but I almost felt sorry for Cesaro to have to waste his talents on someone like Sheamus, I thought for sure that he would walk all over him and dominate the series. Cesaro is better in the ring and simply more entertaining to watch. Sheamus has all of the appeal of watching wet paint dry.

Much to my chagrin, Sheamus has already bested Cesaro by winning three matches. Allow me to repeat myself…

SHEAMUS. WON. THREE. MATCHES.

I just don’t understand the logic behind him winning three matches in a row. As a fan, I would find it much more gripping if they went back and forth in winning matches. Let’s say Sheamus wins two and then Cesaro wins one, have it go like that instead of having that ginger win three in a row and Cesaro get his first victory at a house show. The only part of this feud that has me invested is that I get to watch the Swiss Superman in the ring. He could easily be the champion and the main guy in the company. The crowd loves him and he has an athletic ability that is pretty damn tough to match. I would love to see him in a feud with someone like Finn Balor, someone who can match his abilities in the ring. Pitting him against Sheamus just isn’t fair.

A dirt sheet online reported that Cesaro was going to be done with the WWE in the near future and I don’t see that as a possibility but they do need to do something to showcase his talent. Cesaro can hold a belt, he consistently has the absolute best matches on the card, and I’m pretty sure that he is part robot/cyborg.

I’d be hanging on to that talent with everything that I had. Let’s hope that the WWE feels the same way and big things are coming for him.

 

Time Is Ticking.

Monday Night Raw was a unique show this week, with a house show happening at the exact same time as the television broadcast. A lot of talent was missing but I thought that it gave others time to shine and further some storylines leading into the Royal Rumble at the end of January.

What was most exciting (to me) was that we got a second appearance from Vince McMahon, something that always means shit is going to hit the proverbial fan. It’s always interesting to see him on television because the reaction is always insane. People love seeing him and they love watching him be an asshole, playing up his billionaire status. In my opinion, he’s probably one of the best heels in the business.

As I’ve mentioned before, he’s also one of the nicest people I’ve ever met.

In the opening segment, Roman Reigns was supposed to be the one who was going to be arrested for brutalizing Vince. Stephanie came out, screaming as only she can, with officers in tow. I may not be sure of much in life but I know that when cops show up on a wrestling show, it’s usually never going to end well. Much like weddings and contract signings, something will go awry.

However, the tables turned and Vince ended up going to jail for putting his hands on a detective. That whole deal, and what happened as a result, were actually my favorite moments of the show. So many people complained about it (as they always do) but I thought it added a lot of humor to the show and it allowed Roman to improve his skills on the microphone a little more.

After he was bailed out of jail, Vince came back after Roman with a vengeance. He made the main event for the upcoming Raw and treated us to yet another appearance. Roman has to defend his title against Sheamus with McMahon as the referee. My jaw almost dropped to the floor because I was so excited. With that set of circumstances there is bound to be some sort of fuckery afoot, I couldn’t even begin to think of what it could be. Vince is involved so I like to say that the impossible is possible with that guy, you couldn’t predict what he would do. Sure he may be 70 years old but he is as sharp as a tack.

It’s a title match but I don’t think that the belt would actually change hands this close to the Rumble. It’s less than a month away and the fans react to Sheamus in a way that is less than favorable. They don’t boo him because he’s a heel, they boo him because they don’t like him. What I’m interested in most is to see if any stipulations will be added to the match next week to make it even harder for Roman to retain. I was thinking of what they could be and I came up with the usual no disqualifications and whatever but it would have to be something that wouldn’t allow for any friend of Roman’s to be a part of the match and lead him to victory. Knowing the Authority and Vince, it will probably be a stipulation that is equal parts entertaining and ridiculous.

The Royal Rumble will also have an effect on this match because, if Sheamus loses, he goes to the back of the line. A few of the entrants into the Royal Rumble were revealed and anyone of those guy could be a potential opponent for Reigns leading into Wrestlemania.

I’m just hoping it isn’t the Big Show…

Roman Has Risen.

He finally did it.

Roman Reigns finally won the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.

For months it was commonplace that he would get in the main event spot and then something would happen. Someone would interfere, there would be some bullshit call, or some other shenanigans would happen. It kind of became the carrot dangled in front of our faces, or the Christmas cookie, whatever you’re into. It really started to affect the fans too because they’d be behind him one second and then the next they’d be booing the hell out of him. Everytime he had a main event match I’d think that he would win but then I’d quickly realize I knew better.

It’s not that I didn’t think it would happen but, with all of the disappointment, it seemed like it would be the (almost) impossible dream.

Things really turned a corner after his match with Sheamus at the TLC event in Boston and in the best kind of way. Roman went wild and took out the League of Nations but Triple H was the one who caught the worst of the ass kicking he administered. I sat with my dad, our mouths wide open because we didn’t think that would EVER happen with Roman. I honestly thought he’d continue to take garbage from the Authority in the same way that Daniel Bryan did with the huge payoff coming at a Wrestlemania. Sheamus seemed like the way that they were going to go for a champion so we just had to deal with it until that moment came along.

Out of everything that came from what happened after the main event, I think that it was most important that Roman was fully established as a force. I really feel that’s something that was kind of creating a roadblock to his success, that he hadn’t really had that big moment to prove what he was made of. That same sentiment I will also extend to the main event of Raw. Reigns had two choices; win the belt or get fired by Vince. He chose the former.

That superman punch to Vince McMahon was a symphony in storytelling. Maybe I’m being a little dramatic here but I felt that’s another moment that truly got Roman over with the fans. The reaction that he got was electric, you could tell that he won over the naysayers but there will always be doubters. I don’t feel like Roman is a placeholder champion. He isn’t just there until someone else gets back, which is how I felt about Sheamus. Roman still has a lot of work to do to build his championship legacy but I think that he will work hard to do the belt justice.

Hopefully the odds of the inevitable rematch with Sheamus at the Rumble will be ever in his favor…

Roman Remains.

On the bottom rung of the ladder apparently.

Roman finally got a brief glimpse of being a champion, until Sheamus came down and ruined it. A part of me was secretly (or not so secretly) hoping that he wouldn’t get the pinfall and Sheamus would have blown his shot. In all honesty, I was not expecting him to attempt a cash in and wouldn’t have picked him to be a member of the Authority. The man braids his beard for god sakes, that doesn’t exactly scream corporate to me.

However, they NEEDED to do something with Sheamus to make fans take notice. I had all but forgotten that he even had that case with him until he came out at Survivor Series. Sheamus wouldn’t really be my first choice as a champion but we’ve got to live with it until Seth is cleared to come back to the ring. His injury put an immediate stop to anything that he had going with Roman and hopefully that’s something that can be picked up in the future.

I was also thinking of the idea that they had Sheamus cash in because they didn’t feel that Roman was really ready but I 100% think that it was just to fill the void until Seth came back.

Seth and Sheamus are just such different champions. Sure, they’re both heel but Seth is dynamic and captivating and I have to struggle sometimes to get through a Sheamus promo. The Celtic Warrior just does nothing for me. When he came out on Raw, I was seriously waiting for him to fight Randy Orton or Alberta Del Rio. Sheamus is about as exciting as drying paint, many are countering me and saying that Roman is the exact same. They say that he’s just a Cena clone, and that makes my head spin faster than Linda Blair in the Exorcist.

I personally find Roman much more intriguing than John. I also have to say that it is not just because the man is gorgeous but his being easy on the eyes doesn’t hurt either. When he speaks he has real emotion in his voice and I hear something genuine. I have never once felt as though he was pandering to the audience or being generic.

Sure, his mic skills may not be the sharpest but he wasn’t really a big talker when he was teamed up with Seth and Dean either.

Bitch about him all you want but no one can deny that the guy hasn’t been trying after being screwed over on (now) three occasions. His matches have been steadily improving and he’s changing up his move set, unlike a certain former champ I may have been a fan of. I’d like to also see Cesaro get the belt but he’s out with a shoulder injury, so Roman is the guy that makes the most sense.

Roman did win the title so he will get his rematch at TLC in December and I hope that he beats the beads right out of Sheamus’ beard. I already have a feeling that he won’t win the title in a few weeks but it sure is fun to hope.

I just hope that they aren’t dangling the carrot of hope in front of his face.

 

Double Trouble.

Night of Champions is a pay-per-view event where every single title is on the line.

Seth Rollins is the lucky guy who gets to defend two titles that night, the US title and the WWE World Heavyweight title. That’s a tall order for any superstar to fill on a night where you have to fight harder to keep your top spot, but to have to do that twice? I don’t think so.

Seth will have to defend his US title against John Cena and his WWE World Heavyweight title against Sting. I’m looking forward to Seth’s match with Sting much more than his one with Cena, especially since he owned Cena at Summerslam. He’s just so good at being heel it’s ridiculous. As much as I like Seth (okay, LOVE!), I feel like he has a better chance at retaining his United States belt than his World Heavyweight belt.

*GASP*

Nothing against Seth’s abilities, everyone already knows how good he is. He has WAY more to worry about in his match against Sting than his match against Cena.

Cena is one guy who Seth has beaten before. It’s not like Cena is a master of the mat, his strategy is pretty easy to figure out and plan for on the fly. He’s got the five moves of doom and that’s it, and that springboard stunner he busts out every once in a while. Another thing that Seth has going for him in this match is that he only has one opponent to take on, as opposed to two in his match with Sting.

That’s right. I said two.

Seth will have to worry more about his match with Sting because Sheamus still has that MITB briefcase. I had almost completely forgotten he had the damn thing because I didn’t want to think of him ever becoming World Heavyweight Champion. Everyone is going to be on edge to see if Sheamus shows up to interrupt a highly anticipated match. Knowing him, he won’t disappoint. I see this match playing out with Sting winning that belt, hoisting it above his head, and Sheamus spoiling the moment because that’s what he does best!

Another situation that I was throwing around in my wrestling loving brain was that Sheamus would cash in on Seth in the middle of the match and suffer a scorpion death drop but that seemed less exciting.

There seems to be a miniscule rift in Seth’s relationship with the Authority and that may also factor into the outcome of the main event on Sunday and raises a few questions. If he loses will he still be the man? Will he still have a good working relationship with Trips and Stephanie? Is Sheamus working in cahoots with the Authority to test Seth? Is Seth going to crack under pressure and stress from his statue?

I felt ridiculous typing that last one but I think that he will still have that on his mind, you don’t come between a man and his statue!

I like Seth as dual champion a lot, he’s great on the mic and even better in the ring. A little part of me is hoping that he can retain both belts but realistically, he’s leaving that event with one less than he went in with.

Rising Star.

Money In The Bank always feels like a surprise party to me. What does that mean? Allow me to explain!

You never quite know who will show up (okay, so you kind of do) and you know that not everybody is going to leave in the same shape they arrived in. Some crawl away, some need to be carried out, and some shit is going to get broken.

This particular MITB ladder match has a lot of significance behind it. It won’t just be seen guys clamouring to get to the top of the ladder to get a guaranteed title shot that can be used at anytime. The person who climbs that ladder is guaranteed champion status. For three of the competitors in that match, this will elevate their profile with the company and fans in a huge way. As sad as I am to have Daniel Bryan stripped of the title, this opens up the door for the three guys who have never competed in a Money In The Bank match before. Roman Reigns, Bray Wyatt, and Cesaro, are being handed a monster opportunity and it is up to them to take full advantage of it. I’m not saying that those three aren’t already over big with the fans but a win in a match with this much significance in sports entertainment will solidify their ‘superstar’ status.

Initially, I had a hard time picking who I thought should win. I love Roman, Bray, and Cesaro. After some thinking, I am really rooting for Cesaro. There is just a quality within him that I love, I think it’s his style of wrestling to be honest. He flawlessly integrates old school moves, like the neutralizer, with a new school type of flair. Even as I’m posting this, I can’t pinpoint it. Whoever wins this match will be bringing in a new era for fans and the company as a whole. There will no longer be a constant repeating cycle of the same guys getting the belts. The fans won’t be getting tired of seeing the same gimmicks over and over again. I’m very excited for this match because I honestly think that this will help to revitalize and refresh the superstars and the fans, especially those who constantly complain about the product being stale. I don’t think that but it definitely could use a shot in the arm, but that’s with anything that has been around as long as World Wrestling Entertainment has.

The WWE provides opportunity to everyone who walks through those ropes, it is up to the individual to capitalize on it and make the most of it. This also has potential to have the winner written into a feud with Daniel Bryan when he returns. It pretty much writes itself.

The face of wrestling may very well change on Sunday. Bring. It. On.

Climbing To The Top.

Starting out as just a match in 2005, Money In The Bank (MITB) has become one of the most anticipated pay-per-views on the WWE schedule. I always find the ladder matches so exciting and you can, with two hundred percent certainty, guarantee that there will be memorable moments. Let’s start with an analysis of each match, who I think will win, who will win, and why the others won’t win.

World Heavyweight Championship MITB Match:

  1. Wade Barrett
  2. Cody Rhodes
  3. Damien Sandow
  4. Dean Ambrose
  5. Fandango
  6. Jack Swagger
  7. Antonio Cesaro

To me, Wade Barrett is going to be Mr. Money In The Bank where the World Heavyweight title is concerned. Wade had such momentum as Intercontinental champion. He is a superstar who could (and did) tear through whoever was put in front of him. What Wade Barrett has is a brash elegance, he draws you in and then kicks your ass. His in-ring ability is strong and he has what it takes to be one of the greatest champions in the business. A win this Sunday will help catapult him even further in his career, leading him down a path to the WWE championship. I can see him among the ranks of CM Punk, Bret Hart, and Bruno Sammartino. He was my first and only choice to win the briefcase.

However, I do not have a hand in booking matches.

I am predicting that it will be either Jack Swagger or Antonio Cesaro who actually takes the win. Zeb Colter draws a lot of heat and anyone that is associated with him will do the same. Swagger doesn’t deserve to win anything in my opinion. I do think he has strength and great athletic ability but I just can’t stand him. He used to have so much promise but this gimmick just turned me off from him. My problem isn’t so much with the gimmick, which I like to a point, but he’s just so boring. Cesaro could carry the win very well but I just feel like the IC title would be a better fit for him right now.

Although the competitors in this match are all strong, not all of them are on the road to a victory. It has nothing to do with their ability, it will be different reasons. Dean Ambrose already has a title, the United States championship, and it seems unlikely that he would win a MITB contract at this time. The Shield has so much dominance already, they have three title belts and I see them keeping all of them for a very long time. Eventually they will all hold singles belts and continue to bring justice to everyone in the WWE. Individually speaking, Ambrose I so strong already that he doesn’t need a victory on Sunday.

I love both Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow but what MITB will do is cause a rift in their bromance. Story development is what will come out of this for the two of these men. They’ve been such a good team for so long that it would be interesting to see how the dynamic would change if they had to go against each other in a match of this nature. The final competitor, Fandango, is just too new to take something that is so big. I know that stranger things have happened in the WWE but I don’t know about him winning MITB. If anything, it would be hilarious but he just isn’t there yet. Fandango is one of my guilty pleasures as a wrestling fan and I love him but I don’t seem him winning this match.

WWE Championship MITB Match: MITB All-Stars

  1. CM Punk
  2. Christian
  3. Kane (Injured on Raw by the Wyatt Family, pulled from match)
  4. Daniel Bryan
  5. Sheamus
  6. RVD
  7. Randy Orton

Christian is my number one pick to take the win in the all-stars match. He only just returned but he is a veteran where ladder matches are concerned and has the most experience with them out of everyone participating. Captain Charisma only returned a couple of weeks ago but it is that experience that will give him the edge heading into Money In The Bank this Sunday. He isn’t without fierce competition. Punk came in as a close second but he doesn’t need something like MITB to be in the championship race. After all, he is the best in the world.

In reality, any one of these guys can win but I am thinking that Daniel Bryan is going to take it on Sunday. He is rumored to have a title program coming up this summer, heading into Summerslam so he is the logical choice. To start off his angle, he doesn’t need to win but it would be a fantastic jumping off point. RVD is an obvious choice due to the advantage he will have in Philly but he is meant for something else. I don’t think they would bring him back to have him win a briefcase and then take a title. No way. Depending on the length of his deal, I’d say he will wrap up either around Survivor Series or perhaps even the Royal Rumble. I like Rob Van Dam a lot and he is a great competitor but unless he sticks around for the long-term, he shouldn’t (or won’t) win. Kane was injured by the Wyatt Family in their debut on Raw so he’s out of the match. I like Kane so that was a little disappointing but does build something for the next event. Randy Orton and Sheamus are kind of boring to me at the moment so I do see them putting on a great show, just not winning the entire thing.

The whole dynamic of the WWE could change this Sunday. We could have a bigger, badder, meaner champion. We could see a man back in the title fight after an epic loss. Money In The Bank is the most unpredictable pay-per-view that the WWE has on its jam packed schedule. There is a myriad of factors to consider when thinking about these types of matches. It will be shocking, awe-inspiring, entertaining, and fantastic.

There are only two men who can walk away calling themselves Mr. Money In The Bank. Who will it be?