Tuesday, July 26, 2016

WWE SmackDown 7-26-16


Shane and Bryan walk through the building to hype up giving folks chances. Bryan's theme and YES bit are a great way to start a show off - they get you hyped for the show, especially if you're in the building. Shane talks about how Backlash will be the first SD-only PPV on 9/11 and how they need to find Dean an opponent for Summerslam. The roster is on the apron, including Eva. Bryan announces a 6 pack challenge for the title shot...I have no off-hand recollection of what that match is.

Cena is first, then Bray, then Dolph, then Baron, then AJ, with the sixth person being open to the winner of a battle royal. Goddamn what a clusterfuck this is. Bray's new leather-heavy look is something. Buncha goofs beat up Kane in the corner, leading to "THIS IS HOW YOU START OUT SMACKDOWN LIVE!" Poor Otunga. Goddamn, the state of this roster just STARTING in the battle royal is astonishingly low. Mauro still going with "on Uso!" because he can't tell them apart. Not much going on here. Kalisto hits a spike rana to Zack and gets tossed by Kane. Kane tosses out Kalisto and Crews low-bridges Kane to win. Crews gets a chance to get a chance at the title! He cuts a generic happy promo with Renee. 30 minutes in and they've yet to really remind us of what a six pack challenge is. Becky vs. Nattie is next.
 


SHELTON HYPE VIDEO! Dolph with another "NOW it is MY TIME" promo. Nice basic wrestling to start the match off. Dropkick by Becky sends her to the floor. Otunga says a billion generic phrases while JBL rambles. THIS COMMENTARY IS AWFUL. Mauro has 550 pounds of weight holding him down now. Abdominal stretch by Nattie. Hiptoss by Becky and then a flying legdrop gets 2. Release German by Nattie gets 2. Sharpshooter turned into the armbar, countered into the discus lariat for 2. Disarmor wins it! Really fun match - good one, but it couldn't hold a candle to last night's match. Love the post-match interviews. She says she's Becky Balboa and then Alexa comes down! She says a few things before Naomi comes down and then Carmella says her deal. It's not over because SHE'S A NEW ACT and then Eva gets a giant star intro. THE ETERNALLY-BEGUILING EVA MARIE! Eva shows off her body and that's it...wow.

 
 
Maryse walks backstage with Miz. Baron says he isn't winning the match for mom, dad, or anyone else but him. After the break, Maryse introduces him...for MizTV. Jesus. And he's going to interview himself. Mick did that in 2009 and it was awful - and Miz is no Mick Foley. Orton comes down and JBL lets out one of his funniest lines in ages. "I have a feeling Brock is watching SmackDown Live now!" Orton says that Miz was great out here and is clearly an expert at playing with himself. Miz talks about Orton being "You're like the Blair Witch Project! A relic from 1999? Orton says he kills legends, and Brock is a legend. Orton says his first match back doesn't need to be Brock - it could be here... Miz says Orton just can't come in and get an IC Title shot and Orton says he doesn't need the title to be on the line. Night one of the new era and the IC Title is already something main eventers would like to avoid.  Orton asks Miz who does the pitching and catching in their relationship, and Maryse accepts the match.








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WCW Great American Bash 1991 Part 2


Bischoff and the Young Pistols are backstage. Bischoff's super-dyed hair amuses me. The Young Pistols were the Southern Boys, but it was "too Southern", so now they have shiny gold and silver and hail from Wyoming. Tracy did a great video in SMW about this saying he didn't really like this and had nothing against Wyoming, but he'd never been there. The Freebirds and Badstreet, formerly Fantasia are out. This is one of the worst eras in the Freebirds' history, and they're defending the six man tag titles against Dustin and the Pistols...I think. Freebirds are in red, white, and blue gear and the 'Birds are also US Tag Champs too. Badstreet is Brad Armstrong, who faces his brother Steve here.

Hayes has Fantasia on his ass, despite them having to change Fantasia's name to Badstreet because DISNEY OWNS FANTASIA and no one at Turner realized it until after they taped the shows. Garvin was apparently on steroids here, while Hayes...is on really bad ones if he's on anything. He's got quite the gut here, but he can still move. Great bit where Pat talks about how the Freebirds were briefly country here, recording "I'm a Freebird, What's Your Excuse" and Jim saying "I wasn't aware that was country - I just thought it was awful". Double facebuster by Dustin. Tracy flips into the ring backwards, which is neat. No part of Badstreet's gear fits the Freebirds act - even in this era.

Big Daddy Dink fits with this group like oil with water. Bradstreet takes a billion years to get into position for a Steve Armstrong flying lariat off the top. THE FREEBIRDS DO LEAPFROGS. Not very high leapfrogs, but yeah. Hayes still has a great left hand hook punch. Garvin's "we're sorry - REALLY SORRY!" rules. So much of this match was used for the Freebirds video in Mega Slams. Pat jokes about how Garvin must've grabbed the Freebird hair cream one day given how quickly his thick head of hair went away. Long chinlock by Hayes.

Left hand hook by Hayes leads to Garvin coming in. Chinlock by Garvin. Long chinlock by Garvin. Jesus, and this is an elimination match too. Badstreet lands a slick swinging neckbreaker. Tracy hits some punches, but eats another Hayes left hand. Steve runs wild on the heels. Big double shoulderblock by the Pistols. Mistimed double DDT by Hayes and Badstreet takes out Steve. Hayes backdrops Tracy over the top, so he's DQed. Now we've got Garvin and Badstreet left because you want a Hayes-less Freebird match.

Heels double DDT Tracy, so he's out now. Justin pins Garvin, and now we're down to Badstreet and Dustin...of course! Brad and Dustin are super-smooth together, and DINK GOES UP...to the second rope to distract the ref. Bulldog hits for 3, and I love that he hit Dink with his feet on the way down. Almost as good as Randy Anderson hitting Dustin in the head with his knee to make a count. Sting-Koloff is hyped up.

THE YELLOW DOG vs. Barry Windham is out, and boy is this amazing. You've got Pillman, who always had a unique build, and you put him under a mask but without a shirt still. Johnny B. Badd is facing him here. Badd is in the lipstick and original stereotypical gay getup. We get a shot of Vlad the Superfan in a Lex Luger shirt. THE VIDEO DIES because WCW lost its own master tape for this match. We come back to a huge drop in VQ and it's clearly just a VHS rip at this point.

Badd has fringe on his ass, lips on his ass, and his gear is riding up. Dog slaps the chest hard. Dog gets a very sloppy crucifix into a sunset flip, which Badd can't base for well at this point. Long gets bonked into Badd, and Teddy leads Dog into a shot by Badd. Dog goes for a blind dive, but slips a bit. Badd gets a slick super sunset flip for 2. Badd was basically a rookie and really is great given the experience level.

Badd gets a low high knee. Back suplex by Dog gets 2. Pillman hits a spinkick and Jim talks about how Pillman hated the mask, and Rocky Johnson hated wearing one until he was told to soak it in cold water first. Dog gets a crossbody, but Teddy just blatantly runs in for a DQ. Bischoff is backstage to interview Missy. He goes into the shower and Missy throws things at him. Missy is a brunette on TV for possibly the first time ever.

Big Josh is out for the lumberjack match against BlackBlood. The graphic says Sullivan is with him, but he's not here and Billy Jack Haynes is BlackBlood. Richard Morton is wearing a York Foundation shirt. DICK MURDOCH IS HERE! SPINNING BACKHAND CHOP by Big Josh here in '91, and it looked great too. Haynes and Borne and stiffing each other, and it's fun. As bad as News looks in gear, he looks even worse in regular human garb and his fanny pack makes him look fatter. We get an overhead shot of the lumberjacks...which I think are maybe eight guys total. JYD is here in a shirt, looking even fatter with a shirt. Lumberjacks brawl to provide some action since everything has slowed inside the ring. They talk about how Haynes asked for a raise at a TV taping and they pointed out that he wasn't over and anyone could play the part. BlackBlood goes to hit Josh with his giant wooden axe, but Dustin his hits leg with the axehandle and Josh wins. Dustin wins two matches!


El Gigante faces One Man Gang next. Holy Jesus does this sound dreadful, and OMG is replacing Sid who left to wrestle in the WWF. Sullivan comes out leading OMG out on a chain with Gang basically looking like a 450 pound version of Marty the Moth. Between being led out on a chain and having a bedazzled vest, there's a very overt gay vibe to all this. Pat talks about how Sullivan was handcuffed by playing a Satanist for years and now he's in a kid-friendly WCW where that isn't exactly tolerated. El Gigante comes out with Tiger Jackson on his shoulders and a series of midget workers around him. The one on the right-hand side is Mini-Swagsuke.

The midgets all group-bite Gang on the ass. Sullivan swats away some of them. Gang comes to his senses and tries to leave, but El Gigante tosses him back into the ring. They recap how this match started because Gigante won a stretcher match against Sid by throwing Gang on the stretcher. Gang walks, and then Gigante walks even more slowly behind him. Gigante hits some awful strikes and shoulderblocks in the corner. Gang hits a falling clothesline off the second rope, which results in Gigante lumbering backwards a bit. Gang chokes him with a plastic wrench. Sullivan goes to hit Gigante with it, but Gigante doesn't know to go down for it. Gigante gets his in the knee and then he moves even slower. They recap how Gigante went from basketball to wrestling because Turner had to justify his big contract somehow.

Gang stomps away with shots that could possibly damage a pillow very briefly. The 747 hits, but Giganted just tosses him off and over the bottom rope. Well, that kills his nothing finisher. Gang gets slammed off the top and hit with a back elbow. Gigante hits a suplex and Sullivan eats a clubbing blow. Gang has the powder, but Gigante turns it against him. Rabbit lariat hits and ends it. Well, Gang tried - I'll give him that. This wasn't any good, but Gang moved around a ton and even bumped off the top.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

WWE Battleground 2016

Great hype video for The Club vs. Cena and the Certified Gs on the pre-show. Not much to the panel beyond Cesaro trying to redo his post-SD promo while dressed like Agent 47. The Raw GM is in Christmas themed socks in July. Mick and Bryan do a Q and A and Mick says you should play a hot hand when you get one, and cites himself and Bryan as examples. Mick wants Terry as an advisor

Backlund works out and D-Young does his best to keep up. Usos are out to face Breezango, who get a nice pop. Not really much to this match. It's a basic Raw death slot match, only with Mauro making things seem almost important. Breeze eats a superkick and a splash, but Tyler counters the splash with knees to the gut and wins! The pre-show ends with an epic Shield history video package, with Heyman putting them over as the best three man team in history.
 
Another epic video with everyone standing by their flags starts the show off. Women's tag starts things off, with Charlotte and Dana coming out first. HUGE pop for Sasha! IT'S....BAYLEY! Bayley gets a huge pop and they do the fan hug bit before the heels jump them. Sasha and Charlotte start and Sasha drops herself on her head with a rana off the top. Charlotte gives Sasha another wedgie on the floor. Dana dominates, but BAYLEY GETS THE HOT TAG! Cole's rote description of Bayley hurts her so much. Double down from Bayley and Dana after a double lariat. Sasha comes in and hits the double knees on Charlotte for 2. Dana tries to save, but Sasha beats the champ with the Bank statement. Odd to not have Bayley win - she really didn't shine much here, and JBL saying it was a one match favor doesn't help her.
 
New Day vs. Wyatts is up next. Rowan does rest holds on the mat. Things pick up with Bray hitting a senton. E injects some big-time impact and speed, since he doesn't have to play face in peril. Hilarious bit where Kofi ducks a corner boot and Braun launches himself over the top. Bray avoids Kofi's kick and goes for Abigail, but Woods saves him. He's in a trance and Kofi eats a uranage, but Woods comes to live and hits a big running dropkick to Bray. Woods hits a ropewalk splash and then superkicks Rowan! He gets caught by Braun, but E spears him to the floor and lands right on his head! Bray hits Abigail on Woods to win it.
 
 
Lana gives Rusev his usual intro, and then Ryder comes out in an American flag getup. Ryder starts things off strong, but Rusev kicks his head off with a spinkick. Rusev drops his gut on the barricade with a gordbuster. Missile dropkick off the barricade by Zack. Ryder eats the kick and Ryder taps to the bend-back Accolade. Ryder eats more kicks, but Mojo makes the save. He actually sends Rusev packing - so that built him up nicely.
 

Sami-Owens is up, with Sami coming out first. Cole talks about how close they are that their gear has the same color scheme. Sami eats a giant toss into the barricade before he bullies him on the mat and then in the corner with chops. Owens eats a brief beating and Sami goes for a flip, but Owens grabs him - so Sami goes for the Daniels moonsault and botches it horribly landing on his shoulder. Sami recovers and gets the blue thunder bomb for 2. They go up top for a superplex and KO tells him to hold on before KO gets tossed off.
 
 Sami rolls off and eats a superkick for 2. Crossface on the shoulder! Buckle exploder by Sami, but Owens ducks the Helluva kick. Owens eats a sick APRON BRAINBUSTER! Owens superkicks him to nix the torpedo DDT and the cannonball hits. Bullfrog splash gets 2. Sani gets a tornado DDT and avoids the powerbomb to get a half and half suplex for 2! Crowd goes nuts for all this. Sami runs in for the kick, but eats a powerbomb for 2.5 because Sami got his foot on the rope! Owens slaps him, so Sami responds in kind, hits the exploder, the half and half and hits the kick! But he holds him up to put him in the corner and hit another one for the win! This ruled! Sami is in tears!

Kickoff panel filler. Nattie vs. Becky is up. Nattie plays chickenshit heel before getting a cheapshot to the knee. Nattie does a ton of moves to the knee, but the Bexploder gets 2. Nattie gets the sharpshooter, but Becky makes it to the ropes. Becky gets a one-legged missile dropkick for 2. Nattie gets the sharpshooter again, sits down on it mid-ring and wins. Simple, but good match. Bryan talks to Dean about being drafted to SD because he's the best.
 
 Darren Young comes out to get his first singles title. Backlund's facial expressions are AMAZING. Young outwrestles Miz, but Miz gets an edge with the dreaded chinlock. Darren lands a series of lariats before back suplexing him on the apron for 2. Maryse slaps Bob, who at 66 takes a perfect back bump on the floor before flipping out and taking his shirt off - but not his suspenders and then D-Young locks a bodyscissors cobra clutch on the floor to get a double countout.


 
Cena and the Gs face The Club. Faces come out first, followed by the heels. The Club going to Raw and SD is sold as the group expanding and not splitting. Karl and Luke have new black and red gear. AJ busts out a new Club logo version of his NJPW gear - which looked amazing! Enzo's soccer mom line got a chant for AJ here. Dropdown/leapfrog/dropkick hits 'Zo. AJ tags out when Cass comes in, before Karl eats a beating. Air Enzo on the pile on the floor. Karl and Luke bully 'Zo on the mat. AJ lands some nice round kicks to the ribs. Enzo is a fantastic babyface in peril here. Karl hits a running backbreaker to the heel corner. 


AJ gets backdropped to the floor, but Luke goes after 'Zo and he eats the post. Cena and AJ go at it, but AJ avoids the AA with a flip. Anderson spinebuster by Karl, but he eats a fallway slam by Cass. Luke hits a sitout powerbomb, but eats an accidental P1 Forearm for 2. Anderson spinebusters Cena into the announce table, but 'Zo hits a flying DDT off the steps. Cass eats the Magic Killer, but Enzo comes in and wants a 1 on 2 battle. Enzo avoids a shoulder charge, so it's down to just Luke and Enzo. Enzo runs into a superkick, but Cena's legal and avoids a charge. Cena goes for a Super AA to AJ, but AJ avoids it until he eats it and that's the end.
 
 
 Jericho and Orton are out to chat. Jericho runs down the brand extension and says that Mick is under the control of Stephanie - one of his favorites ever, and always has been since he came into WWE. That was great, and Jericho runs a Brock hype video. Orton gets a glorious RKOOuttaNowhere and does a little curtsey. The epic pre-show video airs for the main event. In a goofy bit, the Raw crew watches in their red locker room. Ditto the blue SD locker room. GMs and Commisioners come out first and then Seth debuts MORE NEW GEAR - shiny black and gun metal that looks amazing.  BOO DOG comes down. Great shot of Roman posing and fans booing. Dean gets a nice pop.
Dean goes for a flash pin on Roman and gets 2. Roman tosses Seth around on the floor before Dean dives out. Seth runs after Roman, but he's backdropped into the timekeeper's area. Dean does a table to table dive to them both. Flying elbow to Roman gets 2. Seth hits a High Fly Flow to Dean as he rolls out of the 2 for 2. Roman hits back to back Superman punches! Dean and Seth prevent the spear, but Seth eats another Superman punch and Roman eats the Nigel lariat. Roman avoids the Shield powerbomb, but eats the suicide dive before Seth hits both with a flip dive. Roman eats the Shield powerbomb through the SAT. Seth hits Dean with a chair to the back to play off the breakup, which Cole hammers home a bit too much. Superplex>Falcon Arrow hits Dean for 2! Roman hits a kick to the gut and steals Ibushi's sitout Last Ride for 2. Roman goes for the splash mountain, but Dean gets 2 off a backslide. Roman Superman punches Dean to the floor, and Seth hits a pedigree for 2.9! Buckle bumb is absorbed, and he gets the Superman punch and spear - but Dean hits Dirty Deeds and wins!
 
 



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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

WWE SmackDown Live 7-19-16


The show begins with Bryan's theme playing, Shane doing the yes bit, and Steph and Mick standing at their podium. For some reason that hasn't been explained, Raw gets the first draft pick. Steph buries pandering and then says no one does it better than Mick, who panders to the crowd before Steph yells a bit in a red and white Raw dress. Mick goes to make the pick, but gets interrupted by Steph as she announces Seth. It's 8:02 and Steph is already dominating the show. Shane praises them for having Crossfit Jesus, stammers, and Steph buries him. Daniel Bryan introduces Dean Ambrose as their pick. Raw gets Charlotte and presumably the women's division. SD gets AJ. Why not do matches and then picks like they've done before? This is literally slightly more exciting than just reading the draft picks. Raw gets Finn and then Cena comes out.


Luke is his opponent here and AJ already has an SD shirt on. With only 24 hours passing between the shows, WWE doing the same basic thing on every show is going to stick out even more. Sing along with Enzo. Enzo has moved around more just during the SAWFT bit than Cass has done in every match on the main roster. They start off and then go to ads, with the match shown via PIP. WWE is literally asking people to watch the show, the show's ads, and then the second screen stuff all at once.

Luke gets an elbow and slams him for 2. Kneeling elbows and a nerve pinch are locked on. Enzo and Cass backdrop the other Club guys out. Why isn't that a DQ? AA wins. This was nothing. Champions vs. Challengers is up with Zack and Darren facing Miz and Rusev in a Toyota-sponsored match. Draft time again, and Mick says Steph will respect him with this pick - Roman Reigns. Roman to Raw. BOOOOOO! Steph and Mick argue, but can't be heard because of boos. Cena is going to SD. The lack of roster reactions really hurts this. It helped prior draft shows and hell, made Battlebowl shows better. Steph announces that Brock is going to Raw. Orton goes to SD, so that will apparently be the only hype show for Summerslam's true main event. So weird to have Orton and Brock on different shows. Steph trying to do Big E's intro was cringe-worthy. New Day on Raw.

Toyota tag gets no intros. Ryder kicks Miz, but gets pulled off the top by Miz. "Darren Young was never great - how can you make him great again? He was a tag team champion - that doesn't make him great!" King was just awful with this. Young hits the Gut Check, but Rusev kicks him to make it a 2. Ryder dropkicks Rusev off the apron and Young makes Miz tap to the chickenwing to a fairly big reaction.

Bray comes out to face Woods, who is already in the ring with the New Day. Woods is in a trance and does nothing for a while until Bray hits him. Uranage hits hard. High knee hits Bray, but Bray hits Sister Abigail and wins.
Kane is mid-ring to face Owens, who gets a huge pop. Owens argues with Mick and then Sami jumps him. Why would Sami go for a sneak attack with his theme playing? Owens tells Kane to chokeslam Sami, but Kane chokeslams them both. There is essentially zero reason to actually have wrestling matches tonight given how they've meant nothing. Sami goes to Raw and Bray goes to SD. Sasha goes to Raw, while Steph tries to do the "boss" pose. Bryan talks about Mick's weird fascination with the women, and Bryan picks Becky. Maybe one show gets the WWE Women's Title and the other show gets the NXT Women's Title. Mick gets a sheet of paper out of a trash bag for his next pick - Chris Jericho. We get clips of Draft Center on the Network with Dean hyping up going to SD. Sasha faces Dana and Charlotte next. Why would the SD babyface rulers book a face vs. two heels in a match?

 
 Becky cuts a promo on the Network, and then Jericho does one shirtless. Heels are out first, then Sasha and we get a recap of the Raw stuff. New, more revealing angle for the Becky wedgie. Sasha runs wild on Charlotte. Stop doing the double knees on the floor, like immediately, if you want to be able to walk easily at 30. Dana kills her with a lariat, and is in some awful gear. This gear comes off as a Dusty-level rib on Dana. Backstabber and Bank statement, but Charlotte blind tags in, gets the facebuster and wins. Rusev and Lana to Raw.
 
 
Raw gets Rusev, and Steph kills "crush" by doing it a billion times. SD picks Miz, and Bryan says he hated to do it - nice bit of continuity here. Owens goes to Raw. SD gets Corbin, and Raw gets the Certified Gs. Cesaro vs. Jericho is up and Cesaro gets 2 off a crossbody. On the newtwork, Owens says "The attitude is because I know I'm the best thing going!" Owens is great! Then we get some stuff between them and the Certified Gs. Jericho should just keep working in this shirt. Now we've got the commentators talking about RATINGS RATINGS RATINGS! Swing by Cesaro, but the Codebreaker wins. Cole says that Jericho gets better with age, like win - giving Mauro a chance to bust out the "vintage" line - but Cole buries him for it.'Zo showing his Jordans off is legit better than most of SD so far.


After a break, Nattie and Becky brawl on the floor. Mauro says they'll go at it on Sunday like Kim and Taylor. Gallows and Anderson go to Raw - so The Club ends on the PPV and maybe the Balor Club starts on Raw. SD gets AMERICAN ALPHA! Mick picks Big Show for Raw. Shane references his Jack and the Beanstalk promo on Big Show from...16 years ago? Dolph goes to SD. Nia Jax is going to be on Raw.
 
Steph brings Neville to Raw - so he'll be the cruiserweight showcase guy. Bryan picks Nattie for SD. Cesaro to Raw. Guy who jobbed to D-Young, Alberto Deli Rio to SD. SD is saved! Mick picks Sheamus as a former World Champ. Boy do ADR and Sheamus reinforce how meaningless the "former world champion" label is now. At 9:36, Cole references the post-show draft and acts like they've already talked about it on the show.

Main event is up. Seth stomps Dean and hits a falcon arrow for 2. Long chinlock...boy is this show just a drag. It's not just Raw being three hours that causes it to drag, it's the way WWE formats everything so that it all just feels like it goes on forever. There's no real flow or sense of pacing. Dean misses a barricade dive and eats a flying knee and kneeling superkick for 2.
 

Buckle bomb hits, but a high fly flow misses. A la majistral cradle gets 2 for Dean. CM Punk chant and Dean hits a suicide dive. Seth hits a superplex, but Dean avoids the falcon arrow,  hits the Dirty Deeds and wins. Shane, Dean, and Bryan celebrate.
 



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