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  • That five-way match is really interesting. I think the most interesting way to go might be Sonya out of the options, but can see Natalya winning. I'd like to see them break Rousey off into a non-title feud with someone, either coming out of the other four in that match or with someone interfering to cost her - I'm not sure who, the only names who spring to mind that aren't in the match are Shotzi and Shayna, and while I like both options neither seems to make too much sense to me although I suspect they could explain it well enough if they did something with one of them.

    Xia Li was definitely a lot of fun in NXT, regardless of role. I liked her.

    In my head I feel like all the teams from Monday should just gang up on Braun and beat him down for some reason, which doesn't necessarily make a lot of sense. Most likely he makes some statement about gunning for Roman, but then gets interrupted or similar to grow another feud,

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    • That 6 man tag was amazing. I love the bizarre face turn for the Brutes, and damn do Sheamus and Butch nail it. Ridge tried, but was a step behind. I was thinking that as a a filler feud between bigger title matches, Sheamus and the Brutes vs Roman and the Bloodline would be amazing right now. I'm sure Gunther will be in the top title picture at some point, but it's very likely Roman won't be dropping any title until a big event like Wrestlemania. Roman will need to defend and win, and Sheamus is a smarter option as he can take the loss without hurting his future.

      Ronda as the challenger again, I really don't think she can be unsuccessful again without it deflating the title picture. Liv has had a smart run, never actually looking superior, but outsmarting or enduring just enough to sneak out a win. I still don't think she should be champion, but they've done it well so far. All that being said, to have Ronda of all people lose again feels like it'll cross the line.

      Concerning Ronda and Shayna, they might be heading towards a team, or maybe a feud. I think the team is smarter, but I sense it'll be a feud. Shayna costs Ronda the victory, keeping Liv as Champ and and Shayna the heel in that angle. The issue I have with this is as much as I enjoy what Ronda and Shayna can offer, I don't see them being good opponents. I don't think either of them are ring generals. I don't think either are strong enough on the mic or in pretapes to carry a vicious rivalry. I could be wrong, because they've both shown the ability, but it seems like it's the dance partner that really carries these women to the above average performances.

      Solo Sikoa has the best entrance in WWE right now. It was like a rock show with the lasers coming from behind him.

      I wasn't a fan of how the Braun segment went. I'm glad there's a continuing thread with American Alpha being upset, but I was hoping for an explanation for why Braun chose that Raw moment to attack 8 guys. It's forgivable, but it's the one major angle that seems out of place from what HHH has done since starting.

      ​​​​

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      • Raw Preview (vs NFL season debut)
        Matches
        • Edge vs Dominik Mysterio
        • Johnny Gargano vs ? - Gargano's in ring debut/return
        • Bianca Belair vs ? - Open Challenge for the Raw Women's Championship
        • Raquel / Aliyah vs Dakota and Iyo - Women's Tag Team Championship
        Doesn't look like anything that will give us quality like Gunther/Sheamus, and more of a story based show. Building towards Extreme Rules (ER) in some way.

        For that reason, I suspect Bayley's title shot will likely be at ER. With her cohorts already in a match, we'll either see a random title defense vs Tamina or Dana or someone along those lines, or it'll be Bayley with a schmoz ending.

        As for the women's tag titles, I seem to see a lot of online belief that we'll see new champs. I'm not so sure. Raquel losing the titles so quickly doesn't do her a lot of favors, and I feel of the 4 women involved, a booker would see her as the priority. She's got more of a future than the others. This isn't a knock on Iyo or Dakota, but they are well protected in a loss and won't be hurt by this. Aliyah taking the pin is most likely if there is a title change, so Raquel is fine, but her momentum is stopped. I'm not sure what else she'll do if not holding the tag titles.

        That being said, if Naomi and Sasha are to return, the more logical champions to face them will be Iyo/Dakota. So we shall see.

        I don't think Judgment Day vs Edge will get very far. I do not hate Domink like many online, but I don't think he's capable of leading a match as a heel yet. So this won't get a lot of time between the bells, most likely setting up a No DQ type match for ER.

        Gargano has been interesting since returning, but his babyface wrestling is often not to my taste. It'll be very choreographed. This will likely be kept short, but it's not something I'm excited for.

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        • Watching the women's tag match, and I can't help but feel a bit like I felt about Sasha about Dakota. I'm a fan of both, but I don't think either of them comes off as actually believing they're hitting people in the ring. I don't know if that's because they're relatively small - in fact, I don't think they actually are, relatively speaking - or because there's something in their wrestling specifically, but it seems like they never really go 100% for things, like they're always holding back a step and working at 90%.

          On the size thing, I used to think this was a thing with Sasha as she really does come across as small both on screen and in pure numbers. But Dakota is not dissimilar to Iyo, and yet I believe everything Iyo does in the ring is intended to hurt. With Kai, I don't get that feeling.

          EDIT: I'm sure this is going to get a lot of tongues wagging.

          Last edited by Oliver; 09-13-2022, 07:15 AM.

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          • I was talking with Pen last night, and I said that KO's promo was one of the best of all time. No joke. It's not Hard Times. But it has the raw emotion and all about the business and speaks to literally everyone who has ever laced up a pair of boots. On par with Cane Dewey.


            I also think that the WWE missed an opportunity to bring back Sasha and Naomi last night. When Damage Control was beating down Bianca, that was the perfect time to bring them back. Sasha's music hits and Bayley stops in her tracks, and out come Sasha and Naomi. Oh well.
            Last edited by Powder; 09-13-2022, 09:01 AM.

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            • I don't disagree, exactly, on the Owens promo - I think it's spot on, really, but I also think that's a relatively easy promo to cut in pretty much any circumstance. It leans into the type of guy I think Owens has always been, a guy who does this because he loves it and despite of his specific look has thrived based on his passion and love of wrestling itself. But anybody could deliver that promo and it hit the mark because it's a very natural feeling of someone getting ahead because of how they look rather than what they can do. And of course we saw Theory getting his leg up as an on screen Vince project as well, so it kind of puts the HHH era at odds with the Vince era.

              On the second point, maybe Naomi and Sasha just aren't coming back? I know that goes against the rumour mill, but I wouldn't be surprised if even with the change in leadership the view of the both walking out is the same.

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              • Concerning complaining about Sasha/Naomi not showing up, I think it's really unfair to judge any segment based on being disappointed about rumors not being true. We don't know their status. There might be a big reveal planned for a big show. They might not be available.

                Edge got the most out of Dom. Much better than expected. Still not amazing, but that was possibly Dom's best match.
                And praise evil Rhea. She's breaking out as a huge star without even wrestling. When she finally gets face to face with Bianca or whoever is champ at that time, it'll be great.

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                • I ask this as someone who's only skimmed the headline news, but are they really setting up for Logan Paul vs Roman Reigns?

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                  • I cannot imagine so, unless it is for a show like the Saudi one, where it is more about spectacle than plotlines.

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                    • Speaking of..
                      Smackdown Preview
                      • Logan Paul appearance
                      • New Day vs Street Profits vs Alpha Academy vs Los Lotharios - 4 way rematch for tag team title Home contenders

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                      • Originally posted by Oliver View Post
                        I ask this as someone who's only skimmed the headline news, but are they really setting up for Logan Paul vs Roman Reigns?
                        Originally posted by Powder View Post
                        I cannot imagine so, unless it is for a show like the Saudi one, where it is more about spectacle than plotlines.
                        I guess I was correct.....https://wrestlingheadlines.com/wwe-r...r-crown-jewel/

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                        • Lord, I hate these Saudi shows. For non-Saudi Arabia reasons, too - they just always seem to happen in such a weird little bubble that seems unrelated to anything else going on in WWE.

                          Thought it was good to see Heyman and Paul jockeying on the Mike, though.

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                          • Here's the fallacy of some of the complaining fans (this doesn't mean all the complaints aren't valid):
                            Saudi shows are never built towards general IWC tastes. Not even once, unless you consider the Greatest Royal Rumble Ever, which I don't. It's always all about spectacle, and sometimes they tie into current stories, but usually they don't. You don't need to watch; you can skip it or even stop watching WWE entirely.

                            And yet, the bitching continues. The entitlement of that portion of the audience is just laughable, and it's why WWE continues to ignore it.

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                            • Just to be clear, I'm not necessarily bitching about the shows themselves existing, Pen - I'm not sure if that was in response to my post or more general - I just kind of dislike that they come in with these flashy ideas, and Paul vs Reigns is one of them, but almost always out of the blue for the cycle to the shows, then subsequently dropped.

                              Like, they had something greatly interesting going on around challengers for Roman, and could have easily carried a whole PPV (Extreme Rules) around a main event that fed into that. There's McIntyre, Kross, Rollins, Owens, Braun that they could have put into an excellent gauntlet match for the last 45 minutes or so of that show to lead into a challenger at the Saudi show. And now they're going to essentially take the urgency from that sort of story away for a six week or so 'challenger of the month' storyline with Logan Paul. I suspect WWE will find a way to keep these things trucking along in the background because they often do - I think it frustrates me personally as a fan not because there's something I want to see and have mentally fantasy booked the minutiae of and then suddenly it's going against that, but because I've watched WWE start setting up these threads and I want to see them followed to conclusion, then I'm essentially being told to just wait for this one off thing to happen.

                              And now that I've said that, I've realised I probably am bitching about the shows themselves existing!

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                              • I guess it's a matter of preference, but I like that not every PLE needs a world title defense. Looking back at the era where that was common, you saw so many rushed and uninteresting challenges. Not all of them, but many.

                                Extreme Rules or Crown Jewel could also end up having a Home contenders match involving all the people you mentioned, setting up something for Survivor Series. There's no need to rush any story just because we were so used it in previous eras. There are so many avenues that can be taken to get to the next Roman story related title defense. Extreme Rules can have heated matches between Riddle and Seth, Drew and Kross, Owens and Theory... and the title match doesn't feel like it would have added much because those are all isolated rivalries. We could have had any of those stories take a break to allow a challenge, like Owens vs Roman, but then the whole match we'd be waiting for the Theory portion because that's where the story would go generally. Is another Owens screwjob championship match loss really what any of these stories or people involved need?

                                My sense from HHH's booking is that the effort is being made to create several top level challengers, mostly from the ashes of defeats from Roman's reign. And the way to revive Owens, Braun, Seth, and Drew is to keep them away from Roman for now. Once they actually challenge, and lose (which is the most logical result), all the rebuilding we've seen will have for naught.

                                Roman is likely only at risk of truly losing at WrestleMania (though I've seen interesting fantasy booking involving a ladder match where the titles get separated by both particpants), so he's not about to lose clean to any of the people you mentioned. But they will need to be strong contenders once a new champion is around. That might be after said fantasy booked ladder match, or after WrestleMania.


                                For the record, it is unlikely I'll watch Crown Jewel. I think this match has potential, but the likely hood of me watching at the time it'll take place is low. And unlike Clash at the Caslte, this result is not going to be 50/50 toss up.




                                Raw Preview
                                Booked matches and segments:
                                • Bobby Lashley vs Seth Rollins - US Championship
                                • Kevin Owens vs Austin Theory
                                Other talking points
                                • Dominik and Judgment Day injured Edge last week (Edge being injured to write him off TV is a bit tiresome at this point)
                                • Men's Tag Titles are likely going to be Smackdown focused with new contenders in the Brawling Brutes
                                • Damage CTRL continues the rivalry with Bianca
                                • More from Gargano or Omos, who won matches last week?

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