Tag Archives: WWE

Elimination Chamber

Curt Hawkins vs Mojo Rawley

A solid match from two guys who currently feel like the previous show is the right place for them. I do wish that both could be used a bit more and have their gimmicks tweaked a little. I did enjoy it and hope to see more of both guys in more prominent feuds.

Mickie James vs Becky Lynch

It’s great to see Mickie back and still in amazing shape. It gives us the opportunity to see some dream matches and this is certainly one. This match didn’t disappoint. It was packed with some awesome wrestling and told a great story. The best of the attitude era vs probably the best of the new era. I hope to see this feud continue.

Dolph Ziggler vs Kalisto and Apollo Crews

I love all three of these guys so was looking forward to seeing this. I am enjoying heel Dolph and think this feud could be good for all 3. The match was short but sweet. Gave all 3 a bit of time to shine and finished in a way to not really hurt any of them and the aftermath built on a story well.

Tag team turmoil

The fact we have this match, with all the tag teams in it, shows that they still aren’t exactly sure how to run the division. Although it was good that they all got a chance to shine on this stage. I thought the booking on the whole was pretty good, each team used their own platform well and each match up was about the right length. Overall I enjoyed this. I do worry that the Ascension will never get used as effectively as they did on NXT though.

Nikki Bella vs Natalya 

I have enjoyed this feud. Natalya has always been a great wrestler and Nikki has become a great wrestler since her neck injury and has put in some awesome matches recently. This was another good match,  it told a good story and allowed both ladies to show how well they can wrestle. The ending surprised me as I thought this match would end the feud but if anything this looked to be setting it up for more matches.

Randy Orton vs Luke Harper

Luke Harper has been under utilised in the singles division and I was very much looking forward to this match which gave him a chance at shine against an excellent opponent. The match itself was enjoyable. Both guys going hammer and tong for each other and really laying it on the line. I hope to see a lot more of Harper the singles wrestler.

Alexa Bliss vs Naomi

Two phenomenal women athletes squaring off for the women’s title. They gave us a good match that was very enjoyable to watch. I’m happy for Naomi that she’s finally got a title but I’m disappointed that Alexa didn’t have a longer run. It will be interesting to see where the title picture goes from here.

Elimination Chamber

I have always enjoyed elimination chamber matches and it seems like ages since I’ve seen one. The talent going into this match was phenomenal so I was excited for it. The new chamber structure looked a little odd, but it seemed to have more room above the pods which I guess is a good thing as the lack of space there was probably at least part of the reason RVD landed a knee on HHH larynx all those years ago.

This was a great match. Real innovation throughout. Corbin continues to impress on the main roster and I love the fact that this seems to have set up a feud between him and Ambrose, hopefully for the ic title. I thought they kept the end of days incredibly strong. I found myself over and over in this match seeing 2 guys go at it and think “that would be an awesome match”.

There was some real innovative use of the structure which was brilliant and there were some excellent spots and sequences. This was the match I enjoyed the most.

General thoughts:

It must be difficult to put on a single brand PPV just 2 weeks after a dual brand one. Especially when that is the rumble and a great rumble at that. Smackdown managed a decent show though.

Corbin is massively impressing me recently. Long may his push continue.

I’m looking forward to more Becky vs Mickie, then Mickie vs everyone. I’m also intrigued to see Nikki Nattie continue and conclude.

I’m interested to see what next for the women’s title.

I’m also intrigued to see how Bray Orton plays out.

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White Rose Wrestling Podcast : Chapter 1 – 2016 in review

As 2016 comes to an end Chimera Rouge  (@ChimeraRouge) and I (@AtlasWrestling) decided to put together our first wrestling Podcast. 

We called it White Rose Wrestling as it is a wrestling podcast based in the White Rose County – Yorkshire, although we discuss wrestling from around the world.

Chapter 1 looks at wrestling in the year 2016 and can be found on Soundcloud  here or cast box here.

In it we discuss

  • Top 3 WWE moments of the year
  • Tag team wrestling 
  • Women’s wrestling and Intergender Wrestling 
  • Chimera Rouge talks NJPW
  • Atlas talks PROGRESS
  • Live events from RISE, TCW, PROGRESS and PCW
  • Awards for 2016
  • WWE UK Championship 
  • Hopes and preditions for 2016

Do give it a listen, and let us know what you think either in the comments or via Twitter. 

TLC

So I just realised that I never actually published this write up of TLC! Here is my write up:

Pre show

Great match for what it was. Couldn’t have gone any better. Great spots and great wrestling showcasing some of the talent that should be involved in storyline higher up the card.

Tag titles.

Decent match. Could have been longer.  Story line issues – like why are two non-tag teams fighting for the belts when the likes of American Alpha and the Vaudevillians are trapped in preshow hell?!?!?!?

Nikki Bella vs Carmella

Great match. Again could have been longer. Told a good story and seemed a fitting end to a good feud. Presumably Nikki will move on to Nattie – given the least shocking revelation ever at the end (edit: having now seen Roadblock I can say the outcome of that tag titles match was less shocking than this….).

IC title

Awesome match. Gave us something different. Miz holding himself up was a real impressive show of strength. These two have really raised the bar since the brand split. And it’s amazing that they have managed it given the amount of time they have spent feuding in the past. I hope they both get main event pushes in 2017.

Chairs match.

A great match. The mismatch was worked really well. Both wrestlers surely built themselves up in the eyes of of everyone watching. Enjoyed it a lot more than I was expecting to.

Women’s title

Another great match. I’m more and more impressed with Alexa every match she has, and I’ve long been a Becky Lynch fan. They built a good story, had some good spots and showed of some.great wrestling talent. A good finish to ensure both characters stayed strong.

Main event

Great match. Match of the night. It was always going to be given the quality of the talent involved. This match was well worked from the get go and had an incredible twist that I wasn’t expecting. Ambrose and Styles are probably the two wrestlers I’ve enjoyed most in WWE in 2016 and I look forward to seeing them in 2017.

I didn’t have very high expectations of this show but they were massively exceeded and I very much enjoyed it as a whole. Having since seen roadblock it strikes me that Smackdown are getting more things right at the moment than Raw. I did think it must be different creative teams but I’m told that it’s the same team, so it makes me wonder why? The only think I can think if is that Ambrose, Styles, Miz and Ziggler are perhaps just loads better than any of the men on Raw (I’m enjoying both women’s division’s at the moment.).

WWE Roadblock – End of the line

Pre show

I genuinely net cannot believe that Rusev and Cass were bumped to the preshow.  I have issues with the way all the wrestlers involved in this story are being booked and the story as a whole is abhorrent. That said, I hoped these two talented wrestlers would put on a great match. But they weren’t given enough time to do that and the finish was weak.
Tag titles

Not a bad opener but it was far too predictable and has been for seemingly months and it highlights wider issues with the way the wwe are using, or failing to use, the plethora of supervision tag teams they have at their disposal. They have 2 main roster tag divisions and stacked tag team rosters, yet both sets of titles are on tag teams made up of singles wrestlers.

Sami vs Braun

Good enough for what it was. Not a story line I’d got overly invested to be honest. I’m not sure either of these wrestlers will benefit that much from this feud.

Seth Y2J

Good match from 2 great wrestlers. I thought it was a tad short and it felt a little restrained but certainly a match I enjoyed and a pairing I’d happily see wrestle again and again.

Cruiserweight

Not a bad match, but again it felt shorter and more restrained than it soul have been. The booking of the CW division hasn’t really set the world alight and now they are filming 205 live in front of main roster crowds instead of its own crowds I worry it might fall flat. I liked the angle after the match and can’t wait to see whee it goes.

Women’s title.

Another good match between two super competitors. They built it well and told a really good story. Probably the match of the night. I do have issues around the 4th fall and the likelihood of that happening.

I also have issues around the match length. Is seems too short. Why a 30 minute iron man match when they’ve been going 30 minutes in other 1 fall matches on other PPVs and on Raw? An hour would have been a more sensible time.

That said, an enjoyable match nontheless , as they all have been throughout the feud, and a fitting end to said feud. I’ll look forward to seeing what’s next for both of these and also to the day this feud reignites somewhere down the line.

Main event

Not a bad match from two decent competitors. Although I have seen both of these have better matches this year. The booing of Reigns is beginning to annoy me. He’s a really good worker and is loved by the kids, thus he sells a shed load of merchandise and is well worth his spot in the upper card. His matches have improved vastly of the last few years and there really is no need to boo him.

I worry about KO and how his reign seems marred by the lack of clean wins. I felt that Y2Js reign as the first undisputed champion was similarly marred and it feels like WWE are repeating past mistakes.

All in all I’d say it was a decent PPV, but probably one of the weaker ones this year. I had high hopes of Raw after Clash of Champions but the PPV quality has been falling each time. The women and Jeriko are keeping Raw afloat for me. They need to sort it out.as they have a massively talented roster. 

Hell in a cell

So here we are again, the latest raw only PPV has happened and it broke new ground. There were 3 matches inside the cell, one of which was a women’s match – for the first time ever! Not only that but they closed out the PPV too – another first. 

I was a little worried before the vent that 3 HIAC matches were too much, but those involved managed to take things in significantly enough different directions for it not to be a big issue.

Roman Reigns vs Rusev 

I personally felt that clash of champions would have been the perfect end to this feud, so felt it had gone perhaps a month too long. That said I did enjoy the match, I felt these big guys brutalised each other in a way befitting the cell and despite not enjoying the match as much as I did their last one I did think it was a great start to the PPV.

Bayley vs Dana

This match was quite enjoyable. I have liked Bayley for a while and I am certainly warmingto Dana who is really growing into her heel persona. The match told a great story and the injured shoulder angle was ped really well. the one think lacking I think is the finish – I’ve never really seen the belly to belly (or bayley to belly) as a killer finisher, especially when Rhyno is currently using a much more impressive version of the move as a traditional move.

Enzo and Cass vs Gallows and Anderson

This match was great. I’m really into both these tag teams at the moment. I think they are both putting on awesome matches and building awesome characters. this match was good but I felt it was a lot shorter than it should have been. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s next for these two teams.
Kevin Owens vs Seth Rollins – Universal Championship 

The seconday HIAC match of the evening. these two are rightly in the title picture, being two of the best wrestlers and two of the best talkers Raw has. This match buit on the feud well and told a great story. I thought it was an extremely clever way to get Y2J involved in the match and I thought there were some brilliantly innovative spots.

Kendrick vs Perkins – Cruiserweight Championship 

This was another enjoyable match. Both these cruiserweights are excellent in ring performers and the match build the story between them well and built on Kendrick’s heel persona well too. I do think I’ve seen these two have a better match before though.

New Day vs Sheamus and Cesaro

I’ve been enjoying this storyline and I enjoyed this match. It seems to have left the door open for the feud to continue, which I’m happy about.

It seems strange  that they built this match up by having it on raw, but in the end that didn’t really affect the final outcome. I look forward to seeing whee this goes.

Sasha vs Charlotte – Women’s Championship 

This was the history making match, and for me it was the match of the night. Right from the start they took us in a direction not often seen in HIAC matches and they came up with innovative uses for the cell and for other artifacts to be used as weapons. a great match, although probably not the best Sasha vs Charlotte match I’ve seen this year. I felt it worked the injury angle well and told a great story. I did think the end was perhaps a little weak, maybe a kick out and another big move would have been better.

All in all a decent events some great matches but many that weren’t as good as previous matches between the am competitors so perhaps not as good ‘s it could have been. 

No Mercy 

​Pre show

Decent enough tag match. I’m not a fan of these “let’s put all the wrestlers that aren’t in other matches onto one big match type matches but it was decent enough. I’d rather have seen AA vs Vaudvillians or Ascension tbh.

World Championship Triple Threat. Bizarre that this was first match. I hear it was due to the presidential debate. It seemed very odd. The match was pretty good, but I was left a tad confused by the booking. When the bell rang I didn’t know if it had become a singles match or what. Some great wrestling on show from all 3 superstars. There seems to be a lot of focus on Cena’s strength these days, the commentary team spent a lot of time talking about it and Big Show picked Cena out as the strongest wwe superstar on a recent table for 3 episode. This makes me wonder if they might be building for Cena to do something incredible with a feat of strength. Not sure what yet. Maybe beat Brock? This is certainly something I could see them do, but not something I would do! I’d rather an up and coming superstar was the one to do it.

Nikki vs Carmella
Great match. Short and sharp. I felt it managed to get Carmella over as a serious player in the woman’s division despite the finish. Some great wrestling from both women. It’s amazing how good Nikki Bella is now considering how she was when she first showed up. The women’s division is looking healthy on both shows.

Tag titles.

I loved this match. I think heath slater is performing better in the ring than he ever has before and he finally has a gimmick that is working for him. His style complements Rhyno perfectly and I think they have bridged the gap between comedy tag team and in ring performers really well. I hope they keep hold of the belts a while longer. I had become bored by the Usos, but I feel the heel turn has reinvigorated them in and out of the ring.

Corbin vs Swagger – neither of these are particular favourites of mine. I do however see Corbin as someone who could fulfill the mid card heel role Kane has held for a long time. As it is, I wasn’t particularly excited by this match, but I have to admit that when it came to it I did enjoy the match a bit more than I thought it would. Built the story from where it was an made me like both guys a little more.

Miz vs Ziggler. What an awesome match. And boy did the WWE play a blinder in the build up. All sorts of rumours were leaked about Dolph not wanting to re sign, WWE eyeing a backstage role for him, Dolph prefering his other jobs, not liking the schedule etc etc and I kinda believed he was gone. These two are phenomenal wrestlers and they put on something special. I had heard false rumours that this would main event, and it would have been a worth main event match. I’m sad Miz won’t hold the title longer, but glad Dolph isn’t leaving. I’d like to see Miz pushed into the world title picture now. I really like that he’s added Daniel Bryans moves to his move set, nd loved all the references – even the hat tip to Bryan’s indie days when Dolph git to the ropes and he shouted “I have til 5” at the ref. This was the match of the night for me, and I’d certainly agree with Dolph on talking smack when he said it should have main evented! 

Alexa vs Naomi. Both these ladies are talented wrestlers. Naomi has shown so for a while and I feel Alexa has really come into her own since joining the main roster. I thought this was a great match, and the fact we had 2 good quality women’s matches on a smack down only pay per view really shows how much of a revolution there has been within the WWE. I was a little disappointed with the result though. It seems strange to have the number 1 contender lose in such a soft finish.

Bray vs Orton – this match has had an awesome build up. Bray has revitalised himself recently which was needed as the wyatt family were growing stale. I thought the match was ok. It could have been much better and i was disappointed with the ending. I had hoped Harper would go to raw, not because smack down didn’t need him – it does – but because I would like to see him have a chance at a singles run.

Clash of Champions

​So, it’s the first Raw only pay per view of the new era. When I first heard WWE had trademarked the name ahead of the brand split I had hoped it would be a combined event, with the raw champions taking on their smackdown counterparts  (it’s not too late to make this happen next year Vincent! ) but alas, it wasn’t to be. Here are my thoughts on the event:

Pre Show Nia vs Alicia – decent match to warm up the crowd. Enough from Alicia to make it worth while while allowing Niz to still be a dominant force.
Tag titles: great match, but I wish it could have gone longer. New day are superb as a team these days and Gallows and Anderson are starting to show us why they were so dominant and highly regarded in NJPW. Finish was well worked to allow the feud to continue.

Cruiserweight title – phenomenal match. Really showcased what cruiserweight wrestling is about these days – so much more than high flying choreography which many write it off as. Perkins is one of the world’s best. Nice post match segment to establish a feud and a cruiserweight heel.

Sheamus vs Cesaro – awesome match to end an awesome series. The stock of both these guys must have gone up massively over the course of this series. I’d go as far as to say that it has been Sheamus’s best work in WWE. Each match has been brilliant and this one took it up a notch. Seeing guts this size hit 619s and coming of the top rope to the outside is mad. They really sold the tired end to a series angle, so we’ll that I’m wondering if the couple of “botched” moves may have been done on purpose to add to the angle. A no contest draw seems a fitting end to the series, but I’m intrigued as to what that means for the storyline.

Y2J vs Sami Zayn – another incredible match. It was always going to be! Sami is one of the best around at the minute and Jericho is one of the best ever. Great match. As this wasn’t really a big feud or storyline the winner probably doesn’t have a massive bearing on anything, although I’ll look forward to seeing if there is any further fallout on raw. I would have preferred Sami to go over, but the match was great.

Halfway through the event and it’s already the best main roster show for ages!

Women’s title – superb triple threat from 3 amazing wrestlers. Told a great story and really showcased to the world how good women’s wrestling is at the moment. I did think the finish could have been better though. I’d like to see where they go next.

US Title – what does it say about Americans that a guy can interrupt a wedding celebration, smash the bride through the cake and repeatedly attack the groom yet still be considered the face because the other guy is foreign? The match itself wasn’t bad. It was the weakest on the card but it was still a solid performance from both wrestlers and was a good way to recover from the women’s title and get ready for the universal championship. More of the crowd seem to be warming to reigns and the crowd battles are intresting to listen to. These two have certainly given the title some meaning.

Main Event, great match between two awesome superstars. Built on the rivalry and added to the ongoing story. I would have liked a clean finish, but get that this finish may be better long term. I can’t wait to see where it goes from here (hell in a cell I presume?!).

All in all, a superb event, I’d go as far as to say it’s my favourite WWE main roster event of the year. So good that it’s hard to pick a match of the night, I think I’ll go for Cesaro vs Sheamus but it could have easily been one of 4 others. Here’s hoping it’s a standard they can continue.
What did you think of the event? What was your match of the night?

John Cena

Recently I rewatched an old old match from smack down, where some kid called John Cena took on Kurt Angle’s open challenge. The match itself was amazing, and it really got me thinking about things.

Cena was, is, a talented wrestler. There was a rather long period in the middle of his career where he perhaps became over reliant in a small subset of his moves, but all throughout he gave us amazing matches. Vs RVD at One Night Stand, Vs CM Punk at Sumerslam, tons of others. He’s consistently produced great matches, and the last 2 years have seen him at his best in the ring, in my opinion – his Sumerslam match with AJ perhaps being his best ever.

He was loved. I was lucky enough to attend Wrestlemania XX and he opened the show challenging Big Show for the US Title and the crowd went wild. Cena, cena, cena was chanted on mass for the whole match. He must still be well loved in some circles,  as he is still the top merch seller, but he now receives boos and John Cena Sucks chants at most live shows.

His mix skills are superb, they always has been. He knows how to play a crowd. Even know he does it, he can wind them up to Cena Sucks or let’s go Cena chants, or both simultaneously, at the drop of a hat.

So what went wrong?

I’m inclined to think he may have got a little stale. When he burst on the scene he was a little edgy and pushed the limits at times. But as his popularity grew he became more clean cut, and was held up as a hero more, and started to “pander” more. I think it was this, coupled with said over reliance on a reduced move set, that may have done it.  Coupled with some bad booking – for which I don’t think he can be blamed. 

Is there a way back?

Last tuesday he came out at the beginning of smack down to a heavy, heavy chorus of boos and John Cena Sucks chants. But he cut his promo a little differently. He had a bit of that old edge going and he really ripped Ambrose. The crowd changed. By the end of the segment he was getting all the chants and the laughs. At the end of the night he was getting the cheers and Ambrose got a ton of heat for hitting him with dirty deeds.

Cena has been around a while,  and is one of the most successful ever. He clearly works hard and is still improving even know. I think he’s certainly done enough to be talked about as a future hall of famer. On top of that, he seems like a genuinely great guy. He has no qualms about putting guys over (Kevin Owens beat him on his first night, he gave Enzo and Cass a leg up on NxT, using his open challenge to give guys a shot – similar to the shot he got from Kurt Angle in his open challlenge etc) and he has made more wishes with the make a wish foundation that anyone, ever.

I hope to see him stick around for a while, to see him win back the crowd permanently he did on Tuesday, to have some amazing matches with the superstars of the new era and pass on some of that knowledge. 

#Letsgocena

Backlash 

​Another month, another WWE PPV event. Now we have seen another brand split we may even see 20 per year, plus takeovers. I worry about this becoming too much, I think maybe 6 each per year then 6 joint ones (the big 4, plus a rebooted king of the ring and “clash of champions” – but I would have had that as a card of raw vs smackdown exhibition matches – each champion squaring off against their opposite numbers). Anyway, worries aside, I watched backlash and here are my thoughts.

Women’s six pack elimination – I thought this was a great showcase. There were some great spots and it built on the Nikki vs Carmella storyline well. Plus I loved the Alabama slam from Nikki! One of my favourite moves! Becky deserved the victory and I like the fact that it looks like they are already building to have 2 women’s matches at No Mercy. 
Hype bros vs Usos a filler match, which was all it was ever going to be. Neither of these teams interest me too much, although I’m interested to see where heel uso gimmick goes. Decent enough match for a filler match. Winner was fairly incidental.

Miz – Dolph. A great start, I liked the reference to Punks UFC fight, although I can see the argument that it may have been disrespectful. This was a great match featuring two of the most underrated wrestlers in WWE today. It told a good story and I thought Miz using Bryan’s moves was an inspired twist. Great ending too. Miz is white Hot at the moment. 

Kane vs Bray – solid match for a last minute change. Built on the Bray Orton rivalry well and it’s good to see Kane back on a PPV card.

Heath and Rhino – solid match, great story, love the team and the skits. Think the dynamic is great. Long may the reign continue! Although it wouldnt surprise me if they drop straight away.

Main Event – Match of the night, and it was always going to be. Feel a bit for Dean, would have liked his reign to be longer, but it would have been hard to keep the belt off AJ any longer. I’ve been massively impressed with AJ through his entire career and it’s great to see him final reach the pinnacle of the business.

The finish was good, but I worry that they may ruin the title run with no clean wins – as they did with Jericho as undisputed champion and many others. 

All in all a solid first outing for the blue brand in the first single brand PPV of the new era. To say that the show was this good and there is still Kalisto, Crews, American Alpha, Vaudevillains, Corbin and Cena on the roster with Hawkins and Benjamin to come shows a decent amount of depth, although I still feel a couple more would be beneficial – time to promote Joe!

I’m already looking forward to No mercy! Nikki Carmella should be a great match. I’m hoping for Becky vs Alexa. I wouldn’t mind AJ vs Dean again,and finally getting to see Bray Vs Randy. Plu’s it will be American Alphas main roster PPV debut. Awesome. 

CwC Live Finals

Are you excited? I’m excited. This week we will see the finals of the CwC on WWE Network. 

I was surprised Noam Dar lost, but it does mean that ZSJ – one of the top 3 or 4 British wrestlers in the world today (in my opinion) has made the semis.

The other 3 semi finalists are Gran Metalik, Kota Ibushi and TJ Perkins. All 4 semi finalists have impressed me immensely.

I’m at a point where I genuinely don’t know who will win, and I’m not even sure who I want to win!

A ZSJ win would be great, especially given the recent winning spree the British have been on in international tournaments. And his technical ability is second to none. I certainly hope he takes the win over Gran Metalik and makes the final.

The other semi final has two of the guys who have stood out most for me. Ibushi is phenomenal, but Perkins has, for me, been on abother level. I feel that he and Jack Gallagher have been the two most impressive in the tournament and I hope he meets ZSJ in the final.

A ZSJ TJ Perkins final would be incredible. And my loyalties would be seriously torn! I think I’d have to support ZSJ but would certainly not be disappointed to see TJ take home the trophy. Whatever happens – it will be amazing!

The CwC has been a great success and I can’t wait for next year’s installment.  I also can’t wait to see cruiserweights on Raw.

Have you enjoyed the CwC? Who’s your favourite been? Who are you most looking forward ro seeing on Raw? For me, it’s Jack Gallagher.