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Posts posted by Go2Sleep

  1. Thatcher/Ciampa was real nice, same spirit as Balor/KoR from a couple months back. Unfortunately the rest of the show was back to overkill city. The women's match was good in that regard, but the other three were worse off for it. They all had good finishes, but kept sputtering in the middle, and no one came out looking as good as they should have.

    On 12/7/2020 at 6:14 PM, RunningFromAmerica said:

    Thatcher is losing a lot, but I don't think it matters *that* much because he delivers that 'shit is on' feeling and that's bigger than wins or losses..

    Really nailing that modern day Regal/Finlay vibe he's going for.

  2. Seemed like there were a lot of obvious whiffs on this show. Not sure if the main roster wrestlers are working lighter now or it was just a bad night for them/the camera crew.

    Matt Riddle losing half his name might be worse than "Tucker" and that men's elimination match was the worst of its kind in some time.

    New Day/Street Profits was a solid midcard tag and worked around Angelo Dawkins not being nearly as good as the other 3 nicely.

    Lashley/Sami was there.

    Good to see Sasha getting back to back ppv title match wins, 4 years overdue.

    Women's tag wasn't much better than the men's. Lana is still a terrible actress. The whole angle fell super flat and the "I'm a survivor" bit was major cringe.

    Drew/Roman was fine. Overkill formula makes sense in a champ vs. champ match and it was justified to protect Drew anyway.

    The Taker farewell was underwhelming minus the Paul Bearer hologram, but this was something that had no chance to feel as big as it should in a crowd-less show. The Thunderdome helps the matches feel more right, but it's not there for a moment like this.

  3. 10 hours ago, The Natural said:

    AJ Styles vs. Daniel Bryan. WWE Smackdown Live, 6th June.

    Roman Reigns vs. Jimmy Uso. WWE Clash of Champions, 27th September.

    Hope that helps.

    Thanks, I'll make sure to check those out. I am interested to see heel Roman in full swing, so I'm glad that match is recommended.

    Edit: After watching, I'll have to do a hard disagree on both, and it's pretty easy to do direct comparisons. The dueling body part work in KoR/Finn was better than Bryan and AJ playing their greatest hits, and the underdog drama played out more consistently than in Jey/Roman. Felt like the latter would've been twice as effective with half the time (and some juice) because the finishing run was intense. Reminded me of Bret/Backlund in the sense that it was a decent match that could've been an all-timer with some tweaks to the writing.

  4. So, is this the first time WWE just completely overhauled their entire face/heel dynamic and match structure formula, or has this been going on for a while? It was super refreshing and the most fun I've had watching a WWE show in years. The virtual audience got the noise level up to Full Sail level at least, and was the first post-pandemic show I've seen that wasn't overly disengaging due to lack of crowd noise.

    The Gargano/Priest match was something I wasn't excited about going in, but they pulled off a nice back and forth match that didn't go into super overkill. Seeing a Gargano match end off the opponent's first finisher was a welcome sight.

    Kushida/Dream was an even bigger surprise and a legit great match. Dream is at his best as an overmatched heel, and Kushida came across as a real killer instead of a foreigner happy to be here and squeak out unconvincing wins. Kushida didn't seem heelish at all to me, even at the end. More of a badass face vibe that wasn't gonna get pushed around or let sneak attacks go unanswered. If he keeps working like that, he'd replace Riddle as a guy that makes every match feel like a war.

    Santos/Swerve was probably the worst match of the night, but it was still pretty decent and I enjoyed the Lucha Underground success story. The complaints I have were the early sequence where Santos was lazily walking into and staring at Swerve's dives coming from a mile away (which was odd for a guy who's normally super smooth), and Mendoza/Wilde as the new Singh Brothers (which seemed to be the last vestige of lazy WWE tropes on the show). The 450 nearfall was the biggest one of the show and it stood out when no other matches went to such extremes. The finish with Swerve spiking the back of his head on the turnbuckle bolt was a good way to end the match after escalating the action so high.

    For whatever reason, it hit me during the women's match that Candace reminds me of CM Punk stylistically. She obviously has a great wrestling mind and lots of charisma, but she doesn't quite have the natural athleticism to pull off everything she sees in her head. It was noticeable against Io, because she effortlessly moves through the strike exchanges and never has any trouble setting up her spots, while Candace is always taking an extra second to make sure she's in perfect position and she's moving just right. Her positives still have kept her matches enjoyable over her career though, and this was no exception. I won't be hyperbolic and say stooging second Johnny is better than wrestling Johnny, but it was a welcome change of pace. His "Are you fucking kidding me" made the whole sequence. The returns after the match were overkill, but I liked Io being nonplussed by the whole thing.

    I haven't watched much WWE this year, but if there was a better match than Balor/O'Reilly, please point it out. It was a match full of surprises but never left the ring. Balor looked dominant as champ, and Kyle looked strong even without getting close to winning. Every time it looked Kyle was gonna get control, Finn cut him off with something. The quick abdominal stretch counter and sharpshooter counter were very surprising after the last several years of WWE style. Finn's offense never looked better and it was easily his best WWE match, if not overall. Low-key Finn is the best Finn.

    I'm so glad I watched this. First show since March that reminded me why I liked wrestling.

    • Like 1
  5. Show was decent enough, but nothing could've been a bigger neon sign that said "quit watching crowdless wrestling" than Kross' fucking amazing entrance being followed by like 3 people golf clapping. That shit deserved 15,000 people chanting "fall and pray."

    Adam Cole is probably pretty glad there was no crowd, though, because a 2020 audience would've absolutely eaten up McAfee's Jeff Jarrett/Shelton Benjamin crossover act.

    • Like 1
  6. So this is like the first WWE I've watched since Mania.

    Tag title match was pretty good. Surprised WWE let Kofi go out there with the "Breonna" armband, but good for him. Cesaro's still pretty great, I see.

    Bayley's entrance where she pelvic thrusts her belt at each individual "fan" is some quality heeling. Always knew she had a good heel run in her, and the 2-woman power trip makes me feel bad that crowdless wrestling is so unwatchable, because Bayley and Sasha as a heel team with all the belts is totally my jam.

    So does Apollo have the 'rona? MVP using his same music from 13 years ago was pretty jarring.

    The Eye for an Eye match might have worked in Lucha Underground, but it didn't have a chance in WWE. Both guys did pretty well trying to work the psychology of the match given the circumstances. The fake eye and Droz puking was bad enough, but the worst part was totally retconning the whole thing later in the show. It went from "One of these men's lives will be altered forever" to "Well, it looks like Rey is gonna be back to 100% in no time" real quick.

    Sasha/Asuka was decent, although the story would seem to call for less Sasha offense. Asuka was the one hitting all the counters despite Sasha being hyped as the counter wrestler. Then of course the finish was terrible, not just because of what it was, but because there were a million simpler ways to get to the same spot. The ref could've just counted the three in a state of panic, or (if you wanted to do something goofy) pound the mat in pain three times while Sasha is in a pinning position.

    The main event brought a whole new meaning to "main event promo." That thing was like 75% talking. Leave it to WWE to ruin the cinematic concept in a few months time.

    Not a completely terrible show, but not anything that makes me want to watch more either.

  7. 1 hour ago, Oyaji said:

    So, here's something super unrelated... How great was Konnan? Looked cool, had the sickest moveset, great talker, got southerners to chant "viva la raza" en masse, got gassed on the way to the ring to the point he was dangerously throwing/dropping guys on their domes. I think I kind of love Konnan only semi-ironically. 

    The problem is he never had all of these things going at the same time. His WCW debut look with the multicolor singlet and the K shaved into his head was definitely not cool and his babyface work looked real bad especially when Eddie Guerrero was working the "Mexican blue chipper" gimmick concurrently. He did have a nice in-house theme, though. His Dungeon of Doom run was his best stretch in the ring mainly because he could take liberties with all the AAA guys he was getting in the door, and the cholo look was a good precursor to the attitude era, a bit ahead of its time. If you ignore how little sense all of this happening in the DoD made, it was pretty good. Then he went to NWO bottom-feeder and couldn't even have good matches with Rey. His wolfpac run had him mega over, and he somehow got to keep saying "toss my salad" as part of his pre-match routine. He was pretty bad in the ring, though. He was always limited, but babyface really didn't suit him in the ring. He was great as the mouthpiece for LAX and serviceable as Prince Puma's mentor before getting killed off by Mil Muertes. Turns out he's a lot better when he had prime Homicide and Ricochet taking care of the "then the bell rang" stuff for him.

    • Like 3
  8. Who's the likeliest candidate to be even up the teams for Bryan/Gulak vs. Sami/Cesaro/Nak? In a normal timeline, this would be the ideal spot for an NXT call up. It would probably be Gargano or Ciampa. It would be the perfect spot for Riddle or Dunne if they weren't tag champs. Roddy or Oney would be cool too.

  9. 3 hours ago, Casey said:

    Yeah I'm sure it has nothing to do with the fact that NXT is getting their lunch ate by AEW every week.

    1. Charlotte wouldn't move that needle in the slightest in normal times.

    2. Who thinks a ratings war *right now* of all times is remotely legitimate or worth anything?

    They just want Charlotte to get to 16+ title reigns and this is their way to keep it somewhat fresh.

  10. 1 hour ago, Web Conn said:

    If this has already. been discussed forgive me, I didn't read the last 12 pages but did Charlotte go over Rhea to pop the NXT Rating? I would have went with Rhea personally.

    I think Charlotte won because she's Charlotte and she always wins.

  11. 12 minutes ago, Oyaji said:

    Just about the harshest condemnation one can give a pro wrestling match. Maybe the HHH/HBK 3 stages of hell match, that particular piece of shit went ten minutes longer at Armageddon '02.


    I think my all-time "why is this still going on"  match is Sting/Booker T vs. Road Warriors at Uncensored 96, but that's a bit obscure and I definitely don't encourage anyone to watch it to find out what I mean. I just immediately thought HHH/Vince because of all the slow walking around with no exciting payoff spots for 30 minutes.

    • Like 4
  12. Night 2 was more along the lines of what I expected from the show after the overachieving Night 1. Charlotte/Rhea was really good, I just accepted that Charlotte was winning before the match to make the finish easier. Everything else was blah to awful.

    Edge/Orton reminded me of HHH/Vince from Armageddon 99 except without the then-interesting moment of Steph turning. So much walking and laying around for match that's supposed to be super-heated. After you ask yourself "why is this match not in the finishing stretch yet," it goes on for another 20 minutes.

    The FFH was as bizarre as advertised, but it fell flat after the boneyard match hit all the right notes. This match seemed self-hating, while the boneyard match was an uplifting celebration of silly pro wrestling.

    Brock/Drew was such a disappointment. I mean I'm super happy for Drew, but he got no-effort Brock here and the lack of crowd obviously hurt.

  13. 7 hours ago, John E. Dynamite said:

    People are acting as if Lucha Underground's in-ring product wasn't wrestling matches in front of a cheering crowd. Their cinematic indulgences were for backstage segments only, if I remember correctly.

    Yeah, but they did quite a few extended fight scenes backstage that advanced stories. The fans were seeing matches way out of context a lot of times.

  14. Thought the show picked up at Bryan/Sami and was better than it had any right to be. Those two were the first ones that didn't seem lost not having a crowd. Other than the intros, they worked to each other and didn't reflexively play to a non-existent audience. Super stiff too, even Sami's chickenshit offense landed hard.

    The ladder match was fine from a technical perspective, but doing all that without a live audience to react is pointless.

    Rollins/Owens was good too. Similar to Bryan/Sami where they did a good job keeping the focus entirely on each other, and Rollins doing his full messiah gimmick with no crowd as a heel actually worked at that meta level. Only knock was using the mic instead of Owens just yelling viscerally.

    Surprised to see Braun actually go over Goldberg that quickly. I've accepted that Braun is just this generation's Big Show, but maybe this can kick off one of those stretches where he gets a real monster push before going back to the midcard. Braun would be one of the few guys who would benefit from an actual break of filming from a character perspective (everyone would benefit from a health perspective) to let this win sink in.

    The Boneyard match was exactly what it needed to be. If you didn't want to see BikerTaker and AJ wrestling a LU/Broken style match with video game sound effects, I don't know if I can trust your taste in pro wrestling. First time in about 7 years I haven't felt sorry for Taker out there.

    • Like 3
  15. 1 hour ago, Godfrey said:

    32 is pretty bad. League of Nations, Lesnar/Ambrose, and HHH/Reigns as the main event are all terrible. Jericho/Styles was okay but not near the level it could have been. It does have Charlotte/Sasha/Becky for the new title, that one was rad, and Zack Ryder's moment if that's your thing. Odd choice but hey, content is content.

    I forgot like half of these things and I was at the show. It also had Shane jumping off the cell.

    Regarding Studio-Mania, I wonder if they'll ever show highlights from it, or if it gets memory-holed. Sucks for McIntyre and Baszler who were lined up for the "Mania Moments" this year.

  16. In some ways, I'm not surprised WWE hasn't cancelled yet (Owen, post 9/11 SD), but the board has to see the writing on the wall at this point. I'm a bit more surprised they haven't intervened despite the massive money loss it will be for them. Just rip the wax strip off already.

    Empty stadium Mania would make for some amazing dystopian pics that would live forever, though.

    • Like 1
  17. As lame as "escape through the door" is, they actually had two pretty good uses of it here. The women's match finish reminded me of when Jericho crotched X-Pac on the door in 2000 (the last good door finish I can remember), and the men's match finish at least served the purpose of getting Dream back on track after his questionable angle with Strong.

  18. Hager/Dustin wouldn't have been my first choice for an opener. Hager is the same boring guy he's always been, and Dustin ain't up to carrying guys like he used to. The match felt very early 2010s WWE.

    Sammy/Darby was a lot of fun. I feel like Sammy loses more than he should, but Darby does have some star potential. He's got that young Jeff Hardy energy.

    The best part about the tag title match was how after all the action, some stomps to the shoulder got massive heat. Great match with Page and Matt being the hotheads while Kenny and Nick tried to be peacekeepers. They all walked the line of going too far, but never quite crossed it and it made for a neat match with lots of points where the audience reacted organically instead of predisposed chants. Tag matches are better suited for the overkill style since partner saves reduce the need for big move kickouts to keep the match going.

    The women's match highlighted how lacking AEW is in that area. This is the one area where WWE is killing them.

    Cody/MJF needed a faster pace to start. Even with the blood, it didn't feel like Cody got enough back on MJF to negate the cheap win. The pace never felt quite right, which was a shame, because the crowd was dying to explode throughout the match.

    Pac/Cassidy was great. Pac was perfect here, getting heat and making it look like Cassidy could pull off the upset at the right times. Don't know why the Lucha Bros were interfering here.

    The main event wasn't a great match per se, but it accomplished everything it needed to. Jericho and Mox are both character guys who do 95% of their work before a big match (not a bad thing, just not conducive to a 30 minute epic). They used the smoke and mirrors well, and the payoff worked. Even I gasped when Mox ducked the Judas Effect. That moment was all they needed and they hit it out of the park.

    Overall, it was a fun show. The crowd was great and even the stuff wasn't on point felt important. In some ways it feels like late 95/early 96 WCW with a lot of pieces there, and even with some trial and error going on, there's plenty to keep you wanting more.

    • Like 3
  19. Sad that Ricochet/Brock was every bit as disappointing as I expected. Hopefully Ricochet can get to AEW soon.

    Watching this show* and Revolution a day apart, and it's starting to feel like 1996 up in here.

    *Watching SSD means the finish of each match, and the entirety of the two title matches, for about 10 minutes of total viewing.

  20. 7 hours ago, Super Ape said:

    I’ve gone over my reasons why I never subscribed to hell and back, but if I were to guess why the sub numbers are low, a lot of it would be on the quality of the current product, and the fact that pro wrestling is just... declining like vaudeville and the circus before it.

    Yeah, I think WWE could be pefectly sustainable, reasonably profitable, and infinitely more watchable if they scaled back on expectations and hours of content.

    But, you know, capitalism. 

  21. Looking forward to seeing AEW live. I don't think I've seen an IM match in person, so that's neat checklist item. The matches all sound good, and even though the weigh-in sounds dumb on paper, AEW has been doing a pretty decent job with these kind of segments. A "holy shit" exalted one reveal would be icing on the cake, but I honestly only expect a bait and switch and the true reveal at the ppv.

    For people that have been to a Dynamite: Do they tape anything before or after the main show? Do they do post-show shenanigans just for the live crowd like WWE?

    • Like 1
  22. On 2/12/2020 at 8:22 AM, HarryArchieGus said:

    I haven’t followed wwe in 15 plus years.  Again, what’s an example of modern day injury angle that worked.  There must be some.

    Nigel's concussion history in ROH circa 2008 (they even tied into a 6-month old Bryan eye injury for the payoff).

    Shawn Michaels' eye injury from being thrown into a tv by Jericho (which I'm sure he'll draw some material from for the Moxley match).

    HHH of all people sold "nerve damage" really well and put over Sheamus convincingly at Extreme Rules 2010.

    Dolph Ziggler's concussion going into a match with Del Rio at Payback 2013.

    Sami Zayn being KO'ed out of existence in NXT in 2015 (but then he got shoot injured and they didn't get a timely payoff).

  23. I'm pretty sure they're teasing a Lee/Dijak Ironman with the fight forever promo. Hopefully not at Mania, just devote one week of NXT to it and let each guy move on. NXT should be Lee's show and Dijak would probably be better off on Raw or SD (as better off as one can be on those shows anyway). There's just too many people ahead of him in NXT right now.

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