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AEW - APR 2022


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3 hours ago, TheVileOne said:

Battle of Belts shows look and feel like a total after-thought at this point. Shouldn't this Adam Cole/Hangman blowoff be happening at that show?

These were supposed to Clash of the Champions level shows. Instead, they're more like WCW Worldwide. 

How is Battle of the Belts II happening in three days? They haven't been building it up at all.

As soon as I saw it was being taped with rampage I was like, well its managed to sink further than just being a 1 hour show. I think it’s safe to say this wasnt how it was envisioned in the beginning. 

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I absolutely loved the Clash of the Champions concept, and have seen most all of them multiple times at this point. However, the difference is that for all the Clashes that pre-date Nitro, they featured high-level matches that were previously only seen on PPV and very ocassionally on Saturday Night or one of the syndicated programs. And unfortunately, the Clashes were much less important after the introduction of Nitro. With the nature of wrestling TV in 2022, you have to have high-level matches on the weekly TV shows to keep eyeballs on them. It's pretty amazing that AEW has kept most of their PPV matches fresh and must-watch with three hours of weekly programming, but unfortunately it's a giant ask to also do that for another four quarterly specials. Instead of keeping those specials for TV matches, I think that would be better served for a more unique concept. Also, they need 2 or 2 1/2 hours if you want fully replicate the importance of the Clashes.

Edited by Big Z
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Yeah. Really, between Dynamite and Rampage, you're practically getting a Clash every week. Maybe if they did something more gimmicky, like a Lethal Lottery special, a Battle Bowl special, a World War 3 special... something that would make the shows distinctive without eating into their regular programming.

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I dig Nyla Rose and Thunder Rosa just fine, but combined they are not a 'Special' sell.  Yeah, I wonder what the hope was for 'Battle of the Belts'?  The one hour special seems like it's better suited for highlight packages to sell a PPV.  I too got the impression they were hoping to mimic the Clashes.  I wonder if these specials wouldn't be more useful as a full on Ladies Night or some sort of particular theme.   EDIT: @kafkoniabeat me to the punch.  I like a Battle Bowl.  3 ring battle royal less so, but a Casino Battle Royal might work nicely.  

Edited by HarryArchieGus
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On 4/12/2022 at 8:29 AM, JLowe said:

This maybe goes into the navel-gazing thread, but it definitely feels like AEW is leaning a bit into bleeding as another way to distinguish themselves from WWE programming. I don't consider myself a blood-sucking freak (like I don't watch death matches/extreme hardcore stuff, I'm very much a chairs/tables/random plunder guy) but I also feel that there are times when a little bit (or in the base of Yuta/Bunny) of color adds a lot to the story.

That said, it should be a relatively rare thing. The Texas Deathmatch between Page and Cole makes some sense storywise (other than the fact that Cole doesn't deserve a rematch) but coming on the heels of the Moxley-Yuta bloodbath it's either going to pale in comparison or have to one-up the violence. I'd be fine if the next blading waits until a huge PPV blowoff.

I agree with this. I'm not into the KOTDM types stuff that feels like doing deathmatches just for the sake of doing deathmatches, but adding a level of violence to Wheeler Yuta or when it works in a storyline like MJF sending murderous lunatic Nic Gage after Jericho works for me

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1 hour ago, Big Z said:

With the nature of wrestling TV in 2022, you have to have high-level matches on the weekly TV shows to keep eyeballs on them. It's pretty amazing that AEW has kept most of their PPV matches fresh and must-watch with three hours of weekly programming, but unfortunately it's a giant ask to also do that for another four quarterly specials.

I strongly agree with this. I've commented before that AEW has done a great job of making Dynamite feel important while making the PPVs feel even more important, but if they were trying to position Battle of the Belts somewhere in-between they haven't pulled it off.

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1 hour ago, Big Z said:

I absolutely loved the Clash of the Champions concept, and have seen most all of them multiple times at this point. However, the difference is that for all the Clashes that pre-date Nitro, they featured high-level matches that were previously only seen on PPV and very ocassionally on Saturday Night or one of the syndicated programs. And unfortunately, the Clashes were much less important after the introduction of Nitro. With the nature of wrestling TV in 2022, you have to have high-level matches on the weekly TV shows to keep eyeballs on them. 

Wrestling has totally reversed since then. The Clashes were a chance to see a house show on TV. Now the house shows have no meaning and the fans pay big ticket prices to attend the TV tapings (or live TV).  I wouldn't enjoy paying for a ticket for half of the show to be on stage, skits on the video screen, and the worst thing ever, showing some damn limo while a match is going on.

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1 hour ago, Big Z said:

I absolutely loved the Clash of the Champions concept, and have seen most all of them multiple times at this point. However, the difference is that for all the Clashes that pre-date Nitro, they featured high-level matches that were previously only seen on PPV and very ocassionally on Saturday Night or one of the syndicated programs. And unfortunately, the Clashes were much less important after the introduction of Nitro. With the nature of wrestling TV in 2022, you have to have high-level matches on the weekly TV shows to keep eyeballs on them. It's pretty amazing that AEW has kept most of their PPV matches fresh and must-watch with three hours of weekly programming, but unfortunately it's a giant ask to also do that for another four quarterly specials. Instead of keeping those specials for TV matches, I think that would be better served for a more unique concept. Also, they need 2 or 2 1/2 hours if you want fully replicate the importance of the Clashes.

Completely understand your opinion (and agree you're correct in terms of oversaturation and giving away PPV matches too much) but at the same time, this kinda feels like the bare minimum (and I reiterate, I mean no disrespect to either woman in the main event). If anything, replace the special Dynamites like Beach Break and Winter is Coming with these and load the cards up, they'll feel more special on a Saturday, and you just subtitle em (Ex - Battle of the Belts III: Fighter Fest). One hour on YouTube/NJPWWorld/Fite, during which you hype the hell out of the next hour on TNT.

Edit: because these really ought to be live if they're gonna have meaning

1 hour ago, kafkonia said:

Yeah. Really, between Dynamite and Rampage, you're practically getting a Clash every week. Maybe if they did something more gimmicky, like a Lethal Lottery special, a Battle Bowl special, a World War 3 special... something that would make the shows distinctive without eating into their regular programming.

That would be cool. A whole hour dedicated to a Casino Battle Royale or a Rumble-style match would be hella fun, I'd love to see their take on it.

Edited by Zakk_Sabbath
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3 minutes ago, Zakk_Sabbath said:

Completely understand your opinion (and agree you're correct in terms of oversaturation and giving away PPV matches too much) but at the same time, this kinda feels like the bare minimum (and I reiterate, I mean no disrespect to either woman in the main event). If anything, replace the special Dynamites like Beach Break and Winter is Coming with these and load the cards up, they'll feel more special on a Saturday, and you just subtitle em (Ex - Battle of the Belts III: Fighter Fest). One hour on YouTube/NJPWWorld/Fite, during which you hype the hell out of the next hour on TNT.

Edit: because these really ought to be live if they're gonna have meaning

That would be cool. A whole hour dedicated to a Casino Battle Royale or a Rumble-style match would be hella fun, I'd love to see their take on it.

Have they said whether the Owen Hart memorial cup finals are going to be on one of the regular TV shows or a PPV? That would be a great 1-hour (or more) live special.

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15 minutes ago, JLowe said:

Have they said whether the Owen Hart memorial cup finals are going to be on one of the regular TV shows or a PPV? That would be a great 1-hour (or more) live special.

yes, both of the finals will be taking place at Double or Nothing.

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yeah, a double post! damn multi-quote didn't work the way i wanted it to. 

re: Battle of the Belts/quarterly TV specials

2 hours ago, Big Z said:

 It's pretty amazing that AEW has kept most of their PPV matches fresh and must-watch with three hours of weekly programming, but unfortunately it's a giant ask to also do that for another four quarterly specials. Instead of keeping those specials for TV matches, I think that would be better served for a more unique concept. Also, they need 2 or 2 1/2 hours if you want fully replicate the importance of the Clashes.

1 hour ago, kafkonia said:

Yeah. Really, between Dynamite and Rampage, you're practically getting a Clash every week. Maybe if they did something more gimmicky, like a Lethal Lottery special, a Battle Bowl special, a World War 3 special... something that would make the shows distinctive without eating into their regular programming.

agreed on the above. BotB 1 was OK. Sammy/Dustin i understand due to Cody's stuff. Britt/Riho was a fine match, but earlier that week on Dynamite we had one of the best AEW matches ever, Hangman/Danielson II. impossible act to follow.  BotB2 is shaping up even worse (although i'm down for Thunder Rosa/Nyla Rose). 

i love the unique concept idea. Lethal Lottery usually doesn't pull off what it needs to, but something along those lines would definitely work (and tie in to the casino theme!)

24 minutes ago, Zakk_Sabbath said:

If anything, replace the special Dynamites like Beach Break and Winter is Coming with these and load the cards up, they'll feel more special on a Saturday, and you just subtitle em (Ex - Battle of the Belts III: Fighter Fest). One hour on YouTube/NJPWWorld/Fite, during which you hype the hell out of the next hour on TNT.

Edit: because these really ought to be live if they're gonna have meaning

That would be cool. A whole hour dedicated to a Casino Battle Royale or a Rumble-style match would be hella fun, I'd love to see their take on it.

agreed that being LIVE is an absolute necessity. once these specials were announced, i very much expected them to replace the Dynamite specials, but that hasn't been the case so far. Not that i'm complaining, more good wrestling is always a good thing, but all of these special Dynamites feel more "must-watch" than either of the BotB have so far. Hopefully that turns around in time for the summer/fall special.

P.S. subtitled events are a guilty pleasure of mine. i love when things have subtitles and i need to remember the entire name. "Clash of the Champions 9: New York Knockout", "In Your House 10: Mind Games", "Friday the 13th, Part 6: Jason Lives", "Bat Out of Hell 2: Back Into Hell"

 

 

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Interesting tidbit in there:

Quote

Last week’s Dynamite was not the original date for the match. Yet the card is always subject to change, and the Bucks were successful in persuading Tony Khan to instead schedule it for this past Wednesday.

“It wasn’t supposed to happen until later this month,” Nick says. “We wanted to ride the momentum of the FTR vs. The Briscoes match [from the Ring of Honor’s Supercard of Honor pay-per-view] because we knew they’d have a classic, and we convinced Tony to let us have it in Boston.”

Good call by the Bucks.

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7 hours ago, Big Z said:

I absolutely loved the Clash of the Champions concept, and have seen most all of them multiple times at this point. However, the difference is that for all the Clashes that pre-date Nitro, they featured high-level matches that were previously only seen on PPV and very ocassionally on Saturday Night or one of the syndicated programs. And unfortunately, the Clashes were much less important after the introduction of Nitro. With the nature of wrestling TV in 2022, you have to have high-level matches on the weekly TV shows to keep eyeballs on them. It's pretty amazing that AEW has kept most of their PPV matches fresh and must-watch with three hours of weekly programming, but unfortunately it's a giant ask to also do that for another four quarterly specials. Instead of keeping those specials for TV matches, I think that would be better served for a more unique concept. Also, they need 2 or 2 1/2 hours if you want fully replicate the importance of the Clashes.

My issue is that AEW doesn't have 12 monthly PPVs a year. As such, the Battle of the Belts shows could've served a good purpose in having a big quality A-type show on free TV with some big matchups good enough for PPV and having them in certain months in lieu of a PPV event.

If they are going to try and keep those matchups on Dynamite and Rampage now, there's no point in having quarterly specials on TNT. Battle of the Belts has been rendered effectively useless at this point. More useless than an episode of WWE Velocity or Sunday Night Heat.

They really need a better plan for ROH. All they really have is a whole other set of belts, a name and a tape library. Doesn't feel like they know what they're doing with it.

Edited by TheVileOne
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Sammy-Scorpio and the Turner broadcasting debuts of John Gresham and Dalton Castle has me stoked for the BOTB.  Yeah, it's not a Clash, but now it's a solid (no one will be watching on a Saturday night anyway) card.

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On 4/13/2022 at 2:44 AM, John from Cincinnati said:

 

There is so many different levels of EVIL in AEW! I'm counting 4, there may be more. House of Black, Death Triangle, The Dark Order, Danhausen. Am I missing someone?

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Right move for #FTR to hold the AEW World Tag Team Championship, ROH World Tag Team Championship and AAA Tag Team Championship at the same time. FTR vs. Young Bucks III, FTR vs. Briscoes II, FTR vs. Sting/Darby Allin II, FTR vs. ReDragon II (I was in WWE NXT), FTR vs. Santana/Ortiz, FTR vs. Hardy Boyz, FTR vs. Jurassic Express, FTR vs. House of Black, FTR vs. Dark Order.

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Just for the record - Meltzer is really concerned about the impact of the Discovery/WarnerMedia merger

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The new merger with Discovery now in charge of the former WarnerMedia networks could in a relatively short period of time become a major story here. One of the keys to this merger is Discovery is a company that doesn’t like to spend money and there is expected to be a bloodbath of jobs lost very soon. As it pertains to AEW, with the ratings track record they have one would hope that they can get a significant increase in rights fees in 2024 when the new deal goes into effect. There are so many variables, particularly when it comes to being able to show value as both a television and streaming property to the parent company this year. But this deal will be the probably the most important wrestling story of 2023, because it will determine how well AEW can financially compete with WWE for the top talent. But keep in mind, no matter what the finances are and ratings area, Discovery is going to keep the prestige sports before they earmark whatever to wrestling, which does very good ratings but is still below tier as compared to MLB, NHL and NBA, and NBA rights are second only to the NFL. And it could be, no matter what the ratings, that the new management won’t be into wrestling to a high degree. It’s all an unknown at this point but talks for a new deal should start by the end of this year. It’s also very important that AEW has angles that peak toward the end of this year as in sports vernacular, this is their “contract year.” New management may or may not want wrestling, although if they get entrenched with the big company as far as domestic and international TV, as well as streaming, that would help their cause a lot. The ratings success should be more than enough to get a good deal elsewhere but how many stations are willing to spend enough for wrestling to give them a deal that would allow them to grow to where they can expand budgets and bid and maintain the top talent when there is competition that will be getting better media rights deals and thus more money for its talent budget. If AEW can make an HBO Max deal that solidifies them as a key part of both television and streaming, keeping them becomes more important just as WWE’s with Peacock means it’s imperative NBCU spends whatever it has to to keep Raw

 

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i know the matches we got between FTR and Santana/Ortiz were a bit disappointing, but i feel like those teams have an all-timer in them, and i'd like to see them run it back. 

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Could be interesting to use BOTB is a way that you had those old supercards from the 70's where you had the WWF champion vs the AWA champ. have titles from AAA/NJPW/Impact/ROH on the shows to make them feel more special 

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