Tuesday, December 29, 2009

12/21/09 ROH

Chris Hero vs. Kyle O'Reilly: *1/2

Necro Butcher vs. Joey Ryan: *

Colt Cabana vs. Claudio Castagnoli: **3/4

Monday, December 28, 2009

12/28/09 RAW

Ted DiBiase vs. Evan Bourne: *

Cody Rhodes vs. Mark Henry: 1/2*

Maryse vs. Kelly Kelly: DUD

Kofi Kingston vs. The Miz: 1/4*

Kofi Kingston vs. The Miz (U.S. Title): 3/4*

Triple H & Shawn Michaels vs. The Big Show & Chavo Guerrero: *1/4

John Cena vs. Sheamus (WWE Title): 1/2*

If the exchange between Big Show and Chris Jericho outside was meant to be as gay as possible, they pulled it off nicely.

Timbaland was a poor guest host.

And Sheamus got DQ'd, just like I predicted in my fantasy booking (see previous post).

Luckily, next week's RAW is stacked. Big time. The capper: Bret Hart guest hosts!

Fantasy Booking

Since John Canton has done some fantasy booking for the Jan. 4, 2010, RAW up until WM 26 (go here), I decided to do something similar. Please take into account that I have not completely factored in Bryan Danielson's debut on WWE programming yet (although I tried). So here we go:

Sheamus vs. John Cena happens tonight for the WWE Title. While Cena vowed to win until he got his WWE Title back, I see this scenario: Sheamus will get pissed after being unable to put Cena away clean. Sheamus will then likely DQ himself (inadvertent or not). Thus, he loses the match (Cena wins), but Sheamus retains the title. This sets up a return match at the Royal Rumble (see below).

Bret Hart guest hosts the January 4 RAW with the week's worth of hype. And I would hype it as much as possible. Hype it huge on ECW, Superstars, and Smackdown, as well as reserve commercials and teases throughout the week for it.

On January 4 RAW:
(1) Show animosity between Bret and Vince and/or Bret and HBK. Plant seeds for a possible Mania match, either between Bret/Vince or Bret in a six-man tag with Hart Dynasty versus three others. John suggested both scenarios, and I agree either way.

(2) I also like John's idea about Orton/Kingston on 1/4/10 RAW, with the winner being #30 in the Rumble and the loser #1. John suggested Kingston should win and be #30. However, I prefer Orton to win and be #30 after a very solid match (about ***1/2 or so on my rating scale). Then Orton will gloat about how this will be the year that he takes down Kofi for good.

(3) I love the proposed MVP heel turn to side with Big Show. Elevates MVP and Jericho is free to do what he wants (see below).

(4) Finally, I like John's idea of having Hart Dynasty win the Unified Tag Titles from DX on RAW. Good stuff, and I wouldn't be surprised if it again hits about *** to ***1/2.

Buildup to Royal Rumble on 1/31/10:
(1) It's three more RAWs until the Rumble. Kingston and Orton will continue to feud through tag matches against one another or backstage skits, but it will never be one-on-one.

(2) Bret and Vince continue to get TV time. I like John's idea of using Vince to keep Bret on TV to try and get back at Bret.

(3) WWE Title picture: Sheamus challenges Cena for the title again at the Rumble. I like John's Street Fight idea.

(4) World Title picture: Batista gets another crack at Taker's title.

(5) Unified Tag Title picture: Hart Dynasty faces DX again, likely as ordered by Vince.

Royal Rumble:
(1) WWE Title: Sheamus wins again in a "brutal" match (while of course somehow keeping it PG). Nothing super dirty, and each man uses all his signature moves. The end comes at about the 20-minute mark, when Sheamus counters Cena's Attitude Adjustment and hits his Razor's Edge-like move on a table set up in the ring (maybe set up in the corner). It would remind the announcers and the fans of the TLC buildup when Sheamus won the title in the first place. Hopefully the match would get ***1/2 or better from me.

(2) World Title: Batista wins the title after 15 minutes or so. None of this "chairs match" crap. Let them loose and get at least ***. The end should be clean, and Batista should hit the Batista Bomb for the win. The reason? So Batista can gloat on Smackdown that not even Teddy Long could overturn and restart that match (remember TLC, when Long ordered the match restarted after Batista had low-blowed Taker, leading to the supposed Batista win).

(3) Unified Tag Titles: Hart Dynasty wins after about 15 minutes, and Vince is pissed.

(4) Royal Rumble: It would be Kingston, Morrison, HHH, Drew McIntyre (gotta elevate him as well), and probably Punk left in the match. Orton then comes out at #30. Orton goes right after Kingston and spends all that time trying to eliminate Kofi. In the meantime, McIntyre eliminates Punk. Morrison knocks out McIntyre with a Flying Chuck, sending McIntyre through the ropes (but not over the top, so he's not eliminated). Morrison then works on HHH and eliminates HHH with some nice sequences. Orton RKOs Kingston. Morrison is all tired after his sequence with HHH. Orton punts Morrison and throws Morrison's limp body over the top. McIntyre charges Orton from behind to eliminate him, but in the process eliminates himself (so McIntyre is finally gone). Down to Orton and Kingston again. Orton looks like he is about to eliminate Kofi but Kofi holds on as Orton prematurely celebrates. Kingston springboards onto Orton back into the ring and the two go at it for about 5-7 minutes, doing whatever they can to electrify the crowd. Orton gets the better of the situation and throws Kingston over. Kingston holds onto the ropes, skins the cat, gets Orton in a head scissors, and pulls Orton over the top, eliminating him. Kingston wins the 2010 Royal Rumble as he skins the cat again back into the ring and celebrates as one of the few to enter #1 and win the Rumble. Orton looks pissed, and Kofi continues to gloat as the show goes off air.

Road to WrestleMania 26:
(1) WWE Title picture: Orton starts the RAW right after the Rumble and again complains about Kingston screwing him over. Kingston comes out and talks trash to Orton, pretty much saying Kingston comes out on top again. Cena comes to congratulate Sheamus and again puts Sheamus over as a legit threat. However, Cena wants one more chance at No Way Out (or whatever the PPV will be called). Crowd gives its mixed reaction because people love or hate Cena. Sheamus doesn't want any more of Cena, claiming he's already beaten him three times. The 2/1/10 guest host doesn't care, and says the WWE Title will be contested inside the Elimination Chamber. Sheamus will defend against Cena, Orton, Kingston, Miz, and HHH. I put Miz in there to elevate him.

Kingston, being the face, stays out of it, knowing he'll get a title shot at Mania even if he loses the Chamber match. Orton still cries foul and demands a title shot right now (as in the RAW after the Rumble). A guest host (at any point leading up to NWO) can grant Orton his wish (probably through duress). Orton loses the match against Sheamus for the title when Kingston somehow distracts Orton, leading to a Sheamus rollup for the win. This keeps the feud between Orton and Kingston going.

At NWO, Kingston and Miz start in the chamber, with Miz holding his own. HHH enters next, and this is where Miz gets knocked out, eating a HHH Pedigree. Sheamus enters. HHH goes out next via Sheamus' Irish Curse (or Razor's Edge-like finisher). Cena and Orton enter the match. Sheamus eliminates Kingston with another Irish Curse. Cena hits an Attitude Adjustment on Sheamus, but Orton punts Cena in the head to get three on Cena. Orton then covers a fallen Sheamus for three to win the WWE Title at about 28 minutes. However, remember, Kingston still has his WWE Title shot at Mania, so it'll be Orton vs. Kingston for the title.

Hopefully a big-time star like The Rock will guest host one of the RAWs in late February or early March. If Rock guest hosts, Cena can come out to challenge Rock (just like John Canton suggested). I would love Sheamus facing HHH based off of my Chamber scenario. If no Rock/Cena, then Sheamus/HHH/Cena could be an option.

(2) World Title picture: Batista has the belt until Mania. At NWO, another Elimination Chamber match takes place between Batista, Taker, Mysterio, John Morrison, Drew McIntyre, & CM Punk. Punk and Morrison start. McIntyre enters next, followed by Mysterio. Taker enters fifth, and Batista last. McIntyre takes out Mysterio with his Scot Drop. Morrison takes out McIntyre with Starship Pain. Morrison then takes Punk out with the Flying Chuck. We are down to Morrison, Taker, and Batista.

Taker and Morrison gang up on Batista, then do a sick spot by having Taker throw Batista through a plexiglass chamber. Crowd does the "Holy Shit!" chants as Taker and Morrison square off (it's good for PPV; it's too logical to have Morrison vs. Batista a.k.a. the face vs. the heel). Remember, this is for the World Title, so who cares about face vs. heel in an elimination match?

Good back-and-forth stuff for about 7-8 minutes. Batista may intervene once but would get chokeslammed by Taker. Morrison dazzles with more moves. He goes to the top of a chamber like RVD or Jeff Hardy would, but misses a splash (or some acrobatic move). Batista still groggy on the outside. Taker gets up and Tombstones Morrison for three. Animal and Deadman are alone again. Taker continues to beat down on Batista, but Batista counters at some point. Batista would hit the Batista Bomb on Taker, but be too tired to cover immediately. When going for the cover, Batista would position his body just right for Taker to lock in Hell's Gate. Batista looks like he will tap, but instead shows amazing strength by picking Taker up into a version of the Batista Bomb, breaking the hold. Taker is slow to get up, and Batista is also struggling to get up, Taker and Batista turn around about the same time to face one another, and Batista spears Taker in the middle of the ring for the three. Batista retains at about 30-32 minutes.

On Smackdown, Teddy Long congratulates Batista on retaining his title, and Batista proved to Long that Batista can beat Undertaker. Batista interjects and threatens Long that he'll kick Long's ass if Batista has to face Taker again. Long says that he's already agreed to having Taker face HBK at Mania, so Batista would not face Taker. Batista is happy with that. But, Long then says that Batista will be defending his World Title against another worthy opponent, one who has been impressing on Smackdown for about a year. John Morrison enters to his music and the fans go nuts. Morrison will bring up how he's been IC champ, been one of the last superstars in the Rumble, and also eliminating two people in the Chamber at NWO.

Enter Drew McIntyre (who will still be IC champ at this point). Drew points out that he lasted longer than Morrison at the Rumble and that Morrison got lucky at NWO. Long makes a non-title match between Morrison and McIntyre on Smackdown to determine who faces Batista at WM26. Morrison and McIntyre have a 15-20 minute match with Morrison winning. McIntyre faces someone else for the title. Would it be Danielson? I dunno. To me, Danielson has an equal chance of facing Miz for the U.S. Title on RAW.

(3) Unified Tag Team Titles: Hart Dynasty keep the belts through Mania, with Uncle Bret going to Smackdown at one point. Hart Dynasty tell Teddy Long that Uncle Bret is to be a "consultant" or "mentor" to the Harts. Long does not agree at first, but eventually says he has great respect for Bret, so he grants the wish. This is how Bret gets to be on both RAW and Smackdown, even without Vince interjecting. This way, Bret becomes part of the Hart Dynasty stable, making the name (Hart Dynasty) that much truer.

Hart Dynasty would be featured on each RAW and Smackdown, either in a match or a backstage skit (or both). On RAW, Harts would face Legacy a couple of times and win each time. This sets the seeds for a Ted DiBiase face turn, as Cody Rhodes gets fed up with losing and turns on Ted. Harts could face DX, but that is unlikely if HHH is to go for the WWE Title and HBK to feud with Taker. On Smackdown, Harts can face Cryme Tyme, Slam Master J/Jimmy Wang Yang, and even jobber teams. Eventually, Big Show will come into the mix with MVP and keep attacking the Harts. Do this every week or so until Big Show gets his wish for a tag title shot.

WrestleMania 26:
(1) MITB Ladder Match between Christian, CM Punk, Evan Bourne, Jack Swagger, The Miz, Drew McIntyre, & Shelton Benjamin. Christian wins.

(2) Divas match of some sort. Maybe Maryse vs. Gail Kim, or Michelle McCool vs. Beth Phoenix. I probably wouldn't have more than one Divas match on the card, so the latter looks like the best bet.

(3) Hart Dynasty vs. Big Show and MVP for the Unified Tag Titles. Big Show and MVP win.

(4) Edge vs. Chris Jericho. Edge's rehab is going well, so vignettes highlighting Edge's return could air in February. Then Edge, if healthy in time, will return in March to confront Jericho on Smackdown. Both men are talented enough on the mic to do jaw-jacking back and forth until Mania. Edge wins, should this match happen. If this match does not happen, look for Jericho to try and reunite with Big Show to get the tag titles back.

(5) John Morrison defeats Batista for the World Heavyweight Title after 15-17 minutes.

(6) This is iffy, but Bret Hart defeats Vince McMahon in an exhibition match.

(7) Sheamus defeats HHH (and John Cena?) Could be a one-on-one match, or a triple threat.

(8) Kofi Kingston defeats Randy Orton for the WWE Title.

(9) John Cena defeats The Rock. If this match happens, it'll be a miracle, but it would be incredible to see the fan response. Cena will be getting booed a lot, that's for sure. I'm still waiting for the Cena heel turn. Maybe later this year?

(10) The Undertaker defeats Shawn Michaels to go 18-0 at WM. The Streak is NOT ending. HBK may gain a win at any other PPV, but not at Mania. I would put this match last, no matter what. The match may not gain five stars from me like it did at WM 25, but it will be close.

Friday, December 25, 2009

12/25/09 Smackdown

John Morrison, Matt Hardy, R-Truth, & Finlay vs. CM Punk, Drew McIntyre, Dolph Ziggler, & Luke Gallows: **1/2

The Undertaker vs. Rey Mysterio (World Heavyweight Title): **1/4

JTG & Shad Gaspard vs. Bryce Andrews & Pat Buck: 1/2*

Mickie James & Maria vs. Beth Phoenix & Layla: 1/2*

Triple H & Shawn Michaels vs. Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith (Unified Tag Team Titles): ***

Merry Christmas everyone! ROH ratings will likely be up on the weekend.

After RAW next week, other ratings could be delayed as I go to Maui.

12/24/09 Superstars

Ezekiel Jackson vs. Vladimir Kozlov: DUD

Chavo Guerrero vs. Primo: **

Kane vs. Mike Knox: **1/4

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

12/22/09 ECW

Zack Ryder vs. Tommy Dreamer: *1/2

Vance Archer vs. Goldust: *

Yoshi Tatsu vs. Jack Swagger: **3/4

Monday, December 21, 2009

12/21/09 RAW

Melina, Gail Kim, & Kelly Kelly vs. Maryse, Alicia Fox, & Jillian: 3/4*

Kofi Kingston, Evan Bourne, & Mark Henry vs. Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes, & Ted DiBiase: **1/2

John Cena vs. Jack Swagger: **1/4

Chris Masters vs. Carlito: 1/2*

Sheamus vs. MVP: *

The Miz vs. Santino Marella: 1/2*

Gee, it took me a while before I realized that WWE was parodying Tiger Woods' infidelity all night. Amusing. Although I think I woulda gotten it sooner if they had a built African-American in a red polo shirt being chased all over the building (instead of a guy in a tiger suit).

Sunday, December 20, 2009

12/20/09 Final Resolution

Doug Williams & Brutus Magnus vs. Alex Shelley & Chris Sabin (Tag Team Titles): ***

Tara vs. ODB (Knockouts Title): 3/4*

Jay Lethal vs. Consequences Creed vs. Cody Deaner vs. James Storm vs. Robert Roode vs. Eric Young vs. Sheik Abdul Bashir vs. Kiyoshi vs. Big Rob vs. Homicide vs. Kevin Nash vs. Samoa Joe (Feast or Fired): *1/2

Hernandez, Matt Morgan, D'Angelo Dinero, & Suicide vs. Brother Ray, Brother Devon, Rhino, & Jesse Neal (Elimination): *3/4

Bobby Lashley vs. Scott Steiner (Last Man Standing): *1/2

Abyss & Mick Foley vs. Dr. Stevie & Abyss (Hardcore): **1/4

Kurt Angle vs. Desmond Wolfe (Three Degrees of Pain): ****1/4

AJ Styles vs. Daniels (World Title): ****

Match of the Night: Angle/Wolfe gets a slight nod over Styles/Daniels. Angle/Wolfe displayed the versatility and skills that the two possess more than Styles/Daniels. Angle and Wolfe also were more limited by the cage and the stipulations (could not use the cage in the first two falls and could not go outside to brawl). Wolfe sold the ankle lock extremely well and his blade job was pretty nasty.

Trash of the Night: Tara/ODB. It was a mostly putrid match that had a couple of OK spots. And I do not like the emotional crying Tara who plays the sympathy card with the fans. I really wanted to puke after seeing yet another one of those "I did it and I love you all!" speeches.

MVPs: Angle, Wolfe, Styles, and Daniels. Need I say more?

Analysis: The PPV was a true hit-or-miss PPV. The four aforementioned MVPs stole the show, and Shelley and Sabin provided a nice opener. However, the other matches ranged from OK to ugly. The Knockouts match was ugly, the Feast or Fired match was terrible with no flow, the 8-man elimination match was weird with little flow, the Last Man Standing match was barely salvageable because Steiner did his Frankensteiner from the top rope, and the four hardcore nutcases were at least entertaining by engaging in a toned-down spotfest.

For the record, in the Feast or Fired Match:

Kevin Nash pulled down Case #1 and received a Tag Team Title shot.
Samoa Joe pulled down Case #3 and received a World Title shot.
Rob Terry pulled down Case #4 and received an X-Division Title shot.
Sheik Abdul Bashir pulled down Case #2 and was fired.

This PPV was really only worth it to see the last two matches. Otherwise, pass.

Overall Rating: **1/2

Saturday, December 19, 2009

12/19/09 Tribute to the Troops

Rey Mysterio & Mark Henry vs. CM Punk & Carlito: 3/4*

The Miz vs. John Morrison: *

John Cena vs. Chris Jericho (WWE Title): *1/2

Please note that this show was taped before the TLC PPV. At the time Tribute to the Troops was taped, Morrison was still IC champ and Cena was still WWE champ.

12/19/09 Final Battle

Claudio Castagnoli vs. Rhett Titus vs. Colt Cabana vs. Kenny Omega: ***1/2

Bison Smith & Erick Stevens vs. Delirious & Bobby Dempsey: ***

Eddie Kingston vs. Chris Hero: ***3/4

Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson vs. Kevin Steen & El Generico: ****

Kenny King vs. Roderick Strong: **1/4

Rocky Romero vs. Alex Koslov: **1/2

Mark Briscoe & Jay Briscoe vs. Davey Richards & Eddie Edwards (Tag Team Titles): ***3/4

Jack Evans vs. Teddy Hart: ***1/4

Austin Aries vs. Tyler Black (World Title): ***

Match of the Night: Bucks vs. Steenerico. Excellent stuff. The Steen heel turn after the match was also well done.

Trash of the Night: Aries/Black. It really looked like a dream main event on paper, but the fact that it dragged for an hour (until the end) really hurt the rating. If Aries was not such a chicken in running from Black for a bunch of the match, maybe we'd get somewhere. They do get some kudos for lasting 60 minutes, though (see the rating). Crowd was really split between this being a good match and a crappy one.

MVPs: Steen gets part of the award for his role in the match and the heel turn. Young Bucks also get a share of MVP honors for their flashy performance. Oh, and how about Teddy Hart and Jack Evans, huh? They arrived late, but those two made up for it and gave us a fun spotfest.

Analysis: The PPV was a very consistent PPV. It was mostly awesome (Kingston/Hero, Bucks/Steenerico, Briscoes/Wolves, and Hart/Evans). Aries/Black was borderline ugly for what it was. Final Battle was an excellent PPV with seven matches above three stars. While that last match left me very disappointed, I am thoroughly pleased with the PPV.

Overall Rating: ****

Friday, December 18, 2009

12/18/09 Smackdown

Drew McIntyre, CM Punk, & Luke Gallows vs. John Morrison, Matt Hardy, & R-Truth: **1/4

Kane vs. Eric Escobar: 1/2*

The Great Khali vs. Chris Jericho: DUD

Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith vs. Jimmy Wang Yang & Slam Master J: **

Beth Phoenix vs. Maria: 1/2*

Rey Mysterio vs. Batista: ***1/4

Thursday, December 17, 2009

12/17/09 Impact

Roxxi vs. ODB: *1/2

Brother Ray vs. Matt Morgan (Lumberjack): *1/2

Awesome Kong & Hamada vs. Velvet Sky & Madison Rayne vs. Sarita & Taylor Wilde: *1/4

Tatanka vs. Jay Lethal: **

Daniels vs. Desmond Wolfe: ***1/4

AJ Styles, Bobby Lashley, Kurt Angle, Abyss, & Tomko vs. Scott Steiner, Dr. Stevie, Raven, Brutus Magnus, & Doug Williams: *3/4

No Impact next week (Christmas Eve), but there will be a four-hour Impact on New Year's Eve. I will be in Maui at that time, so ratings may be delayed by a day or two.

Daniels/Wolfe was a great match. Such a shame they had only 10 minutes for a draw.

12/17/09 Superstars

JTG & Shad Gaspard vs. Dolph Ziggler & Mike Knox: **1/4

Vance Archer vs. Tommy Dreamer: *1/4

Jack Swagger vs. MVP: **1/2

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

12/14/09 ROH

Delirious vs. Kenny King: **3/4

Lance Lude vs. Steve Corino: N/A

Erick Stevens vs. Remy Marcel: 1/4*

Tyler Black vs. Sonjay Dutt: ***1/4

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

12/15/09 ECW

The Hurricane vs. The Ripper (Paul Burchill): **

Ezekiel Jackson vs. Vladimir Kozlov: 1/4*

Trent Barreta & Caylen Croft vs. Julio Cruz & Jorge Arias: DUD

Kane vs. Zack Ryder: *1/4

The gamers (Barreta & Croft) finally got new music. The original music they had was crappy. Still though, this new theme is pretty generic.

12/14/09 RAW

(3-hour special guest hosted by Dennis Miller)

Christian, Kane, & The Great Khali vs. William Regal, Vladimir Kozlov, & Ezekiel Jackson: 1/4*

Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase vs. Kofi Kingston & Evan Bourne: *1/2

John Cena vs. CM Punk: 1/2*

Randy Orton vs. The Undertaker: 3/4*

Triple H & Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho & The Big Show (Unified Tag Team Titles): N/A

John Morrison, Yoshi Tatsu, & Mark Henry vs. The Miz, Zack Ryder, & Drew McIntyre: 1/2*

Mickie James, Melina, Gail Kim, Maria, Eve Torres, Nikki Bella, & Brie Bella vs. Michelle McCool, Layla, Rosa Mendes, Natalya, Beth Phoenix, Maryse, & Alicia Fox: -*

John Cena vs. Randy Orton: **1/2

2009 Slammy Awards:

Chris Jericho & The Big Show win WWE Tag Team of the Year: This was a no-brainer. They were not only the most dominant tag team of the year in terms of wrestling, but they were excellent on the mic in the process. At least putting the tag belts on them has made the tag division watchable again -- OK, maybe not totally watchable (since there still really is no tag division), but still.

Sheamus wins WWE Breakout Superstar of the Year: After TLC last night, this was a logical choice. With all due respect to Drew McIntyre (who won the IC belt from John Morrison), and Yoshi Tatsu (who has impressed me in some of his ECW matches), Sheamus's win was one of the most shocking in WWE history and to me was the "WTF moment of the year" for WWE matches.

CM Punk defeating Jeff Hardy in a Cage Match on Smackdown (and forcing Jeff Hardy to "retire") wins WWE Shocker of the Year: If you did not know Jeff Hardy was not interested in re-signing with WWE and wanted to take time off, then yes, it probably would be shocking to a WWE fan. However, for all intents and purposes, this was meant to further the CM Punk character as a mega heel. To me, Sheamus winning over Cena at TLC was truly the legit shocker of the year, but it probably happened too late to be considered a nominee.

Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania XXV wins the WWE Match of the Year: Again, another no-brainer. It is one of the few matches I have ever given the full five stars to. Sad to see that Morrison/Mysterio and Jericho/Mysterio were not nominated. I guess it was supposed to really be WWE PPV Match of the Year, huh? Nice tease by HBK. Could we have HBK/Taker again at Mania? Not sure if WWE will pull the trigger on that.

Bob Barker wins RAW Guest Host of the Year: I agree with this. Bob was a great host, and his segment with Chavo (poor Chavo) was entertaining. Dennis Miller really did put Vince on the spot here. Bret Hart as a RAW Guest Host? Now THAT is something I would love to see.

Jeff Hardy's Swanton Bomb on CM Punk at SummerSlam wins WWE Extreme Moment of the Year: While yes, it was quite an extreme moment for WWE purposes, this was also one of those feel-good moments to really send the fans home happy. I think the fans only had a hand in determining the Diva of the Year (see below) so the fans had no say here. And hey, Carlito had his 15 seconds of fame before getting nuked by Masters. Did anyone care? Nope.

Maria wins the WWE Diva of the Year: Strictly a feel-good moment for Maria. Fans really do love her. You know, I would love for this to lead to a Maria heel turn in the future (basically let the award get to her head and get an "I'm better than you" persona). As far as the award goes, I personally would have voted for either Michelle McCool or Melina, since they have had the most camera time and have been the most consistent Diva performers during the year (especially with Maryse out for a few months due to injury and Mickie James having a bunch of bad matches during the year). Of course, Batista has to pull a Kanye West during the show, and no one really cared about that. Oh, and Goldust helped present the award with MVP, and Goldust tried to pull some jokes that completely fell flat. Nice seeing ya, Goldy.

Michael Cole puking on Chris Jericho during the Smackdown 10th Anniversary Special wins the "Oh My!" Moment of the Year: I must admit, Big Dick Johnson and Tony Atlas were awesome. Abraham Washington was clearly disturbed in presenting the award. Personally, Michael Cole gets props for moving as fast as Usain Bolt up the ramp and showcasing one of the wildest celebrations for a Slammy award ever. I also loved his poking fun at J.R. and catering to the Texas crowd with the "Hook'em Horns!" Good stuff...VINTAGE COLE!

John Cena beats CM Punk and Randy Orton in separate matches on RAW to win WWE Superstar of the Year: As much as some fans hate Cena, he is truly the franchise player of WWE. Cena = money and ratings.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

12/13/09 TLC

Christian vs. Shelton Benjamin (Ladder; ECW Title): ***1/2

Drew McIntyre vs. John Morrison (IC Title): **3/4

Michelle McCool vs. Mickie James (Women's Title): **1/4

Sheamus vs. John Cena (Tables; WWE Title): **1/2

The Undertaker vs. Batista (Chairs; World Heavyweight Title): **

Randy Orton vs. Kofi Kingston: **3/4

Triple H & Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho & The Big Show (TLC; Unified Tag Team Titles): ***3/4

Match of the Night: Triple H & Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho & The Big Show (TLC). TLC won out over the ECW Ladder match for two reasons: (1) more original spots and (2) better crowd reaction.

Trash of the Night: The Undertaker vs. Batista (Chairs). It was a decent effort, but the restart finish all but sealed its fate as trash of the night. Sheamus/Cena would have nabbed TOTN honors from me, but then Taker/Batista came along.

MVPs: The veterans had their moments (see Christian/Shelton and DX/JeriShow), but newcomers Drew McIntyre and Sheamus get a special nod for winning their first titles in WWE.

Analysis: Shelton/Christian was great. Nice sick spots from Shelton, while not as much from Christian. it was clear to me that Shelton was the star. Ladder-split-in-two spot has been done several times before, so not as many points from me as one may think. It was a great effort, though, and while I think the two of them did not necessarily steal the show in the end, it came close.

Drew wins the belt? I'm not sure if I agree totally with doing that, but it's good to elevate a young star's career. It was a pretty standard match in my book, nothing overly spectacular. Maybe a few more points for the Morrison Flying Chuck on the outside and McIntyre's foot under the bottom rope.

McCool/Mickie was a surprisingly good match. Nice aggression shown, and the crowd got into it at the end. Good tease with Mickie looking like she would win with the rollup. Actual finish was a bit weak. I mean, just a kick to the head wins it? Hopefully there's more to this, because it's actually one of the few Diva storylines existing right now -- actually, it's really the only noteworthy one (sorry Maryse/Melina).

Sheamus winning over John Cena? Wow. I can guarantee people betting on Sheamus won a TON of money tonight. I was pretty much like the rest of the WWE Universe: in complete shock at the finish. The match was good for what it was, but did it really deliver for me? Not totally. I liked some of the tease spots, but the match lagged A LOT. I definitely grew restless with the slow pace, and I'm pretty sure a bunch of the crowd boos in the match were not only because people hate Cena (X-Pac heat) and Sheamus (gimmick heat). I think if more tables broke (with the opponent moving out of the way), that would have been a better showing. After all, a person must put the opponent through the table on an offensive move; putting oneself through the table doesn't count.

Taker and Batista were going pretty good, in my book, until the weird "restart" finish. It basically made a passable match that much crappier. So this is what happens when you have two 40-year-olds battling it out and HBK is not one of them. The match is...meh.

Orton and Kingston had a decent match. The storytelling was great before the match, and kept going strong throughout the match. Kofi has definitely established himself as a force even with the loss.

DX vs. JeriShow was awesome. There were innovative spots, and the crowd reaction was great. Big Show breaking two ladders was impressive. Jericho cracking his head on the table at the end (when he should have gone cleanly through) and the innovation on trying to retrieve the tag belts (Jericho climbing on Show and DX using half a ladder) really stood out and made it better than the ladder match, in my opinion.

Overall, it was a solid show. Two matches stood out (Ladder and TLC), and Kofi continues to impress in his feud with Orton, even in defeat. But let's face it, the night was also about two newcomers -- Drew McIntyre and Sheamus -- getting their first taste of gold.

Overall Rating: ***1/4

Friday, December 11, 2009

12/11/09 Smackdown

CM Punk & Luke Gallows vs. Matt Hardy & R-Truth: **1/4

Chris Jericho & The Big Show vs. Eric Escobar: 3/4*

Kane vs. Mike Knox: *1/4

Mickie James & Maria vs. Michelle McCool & Layla: *

Batista vs. Rey Mysterio: *3/4

Punk's mic work = awesome

I love the name of Gallows's finisher ("The 12th Step")

And Morrison = win

12/10/09 Superstars

Dolph Ziggler vs. Finlay: **

Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith vs. Jimmy Wang Yang & Slam Master J: **

MVP vs. Jack Swagger: **1/2

Thursday, December 10, 2009

12/10/09 Impact

Chris Sabin vs. Brutus Magnus, Doug Williams, & Big Rob: *1/4

Bobby Lashley & Kristal Lashley vs. Scott Steiner & Awesome Kong: *

Eric Young vs. Hamada (Global Title): 3/4*

ODB vs. Tara (Trailer Park Throwdown): *

Brother Ray, Brother Devon, Rhino, & Jesse Neal vs. Matt Morgan, Hernandez, & Suicide: **

Velvet Sky vs. Lacey Von Erich (Mud Wrestling): -*

AJ Styles vs. Desmond Wolfe (World Title): *1/2

12/7/09 ROH

Mark Briscoe & Jay Briscoe vs. Kevin Steen & El Generico: **3/4

Austin Aries vs. Kenny Omega vs. Davey Richards vs. Roderick Strong (World Title): ***3/4

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

12/8/09 ECW

Vance Archer vs. Tommy Dreamer: *1/4

Trent Barreta & Caylen Croft vs. Mark Franks & Danny Vaughn: 1/4*

Christian, Shelton Benjamin, & Yoshi Tatsu vs. William Regal, Vladimir Kozlov, & Ezekiel Jackson: *3/4

Monday, December 7, 2009

12/7/09 RAW

John Cena vs. Carlito: 1/4*

Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase vs. Evan Bourne & Primo: *1/2

Maryse vs. Gail Kim: 1/2*

Kofi Kingston vs. Randy Orton: **

The Miz vs. Mark Henry (U.S. Title): *1/4

Hornswoggle & Eve Torres vs. Chavo Guerrero & Jillian: 1/2*

Chris Jericho vs. Triple H & Shawn Michaels: N/A

Mark Cuban did well as guest host.

Jericho vs. DX was a no-contest and really was not enough of a match to get me to rate it, but it was good storytelling for what we got.

Friday, December 4, 2009

12/4/09 Smackdown

R-Truth vs. CM Punk: *1/2

Kane vs. Mike Knox: *1/4

Mickie James vs. Beth Phoenix vs. Natalya: *1/4

Drew McIntyre vs. John Morrison: **1/2

Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith vs. Eric Escobar: *

Chris Jericho & The Big Show vs. JTG & Shad Gaspard: *1/4

12/3/09 Superstars

Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase vs. Evan Bourne & Primo: **

The Hurricane vs. Zack Ryder: *1/4

Dolph Ziggler vs. Matt Hardy: **1/2

Thursday, December 3, 2009

12/3/09 Impact

Alex Shelley vs. Doug Williams: *3/4

Suicide vs. Homicide: *1/2

D'Angelo Dinero vs. Jesse Neal: 1/2*

Eric Young & Kevin Nash vs. James Storm & Robert Roode: *3/4

Daniels vs. Abyss: 1/4*

Hamada vs. Sarita: *1/4

Kurt Angle vs. Raven & Dr. Stevie: *1/2

11/30/09 ROH

Eddie Kingston vs. Claudio Castagnoli: *3/4

Mark Briscoe & Jay Briscoe vs. Jon Davis & Kory Chavis: **1/2

Kevin Steen & El Generico vs. Lance Lude & J-Sinn: *

Austin Aries vs. Colt Cabana: **1/2

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

12/1/09 ECW

Goldust vs. William Regal: *

Trent Barreta & Caylen Croft vs. Bobby Shields & Tyler Hilton: 1/4*

Christian & Shelton Benjamin vs. Vladimir Kozlov & Ezekiel Jackson: **

Monday, November 30, 2009

11/30/09 RAW

Maryse & Jillian vs. Melina & Gail Kim: 3/4*

Sheamus vs. Santino Marella: N/A

Randy Orton vs. Kofi Kingston: 1/2*

Mark Henry vs. The Miz: 1/4*

Triple H vs. Chris Jericho: **3/4

Sheamus's squash was not really even a match, just a beatdown.

Mini-Miz! (One of Miz's lines to guest host Verne Troyer)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

11/26/09 Impact

Bobby Lashley vs. Abyss: **1/4

Desmond Wolfe vs. Suicide: **

Kurt Angle vs. D'Angelo Dinero: **1/2

Robert Roode vs. Homicide: **

Bobby Lashley vs. Desmond Wolfe: **

Robert Roode vs. Kurt Angle: **1/4

Knockouts Battle Royal: 3/4*

Bobby Lashley vs. Robert Roode: **1/2

Wow. An extremely solid show.

Friday, November 27, 2009

11/27/09 Smackdown

Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith vs. JTG & Shad Gaspard: *

CM Punk vs. Matt Hardy: *1/4

Batista vs. Kane: **1/4

John Morrison vs. Eric Escobar (IC Title): *1/2

The Undertaker vs. Chris Jericho: **1/2

I like how they repackaged Festus into Luke Gallows. He even has a good-looking finisher. Let's see how WWE handles this one.

And tonight proves yet again that Vickie Guerrero never needs a microphone. So much for Escobar.

11/26/09 Superstars

The Miz vs. Santino Marella: *1/2

Vladimir Kozlov vs. Goldust: *1/4

R-Truth vs. Dolph Ziggler: **3/4

Thursday, November 26, 2009

11/23/09 ROH

Kenny King vs. Brent Albright: **1/2

D-Lo Brown vs. Sal Rinauro: 1/4*

Super Smash Brothers vs. Brandon Day & John Kermin: *

Davey Richards & Eddie Edwards vs. Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson (Tag Team Titles): ****1/4

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

11/24/09 ECW

Shelton Benjamin vs. Zack Ryder: **3/4

Vance Archer vs. Alex Reynolds: DUD

Yoshi Tatsu vs. William Regal: *

Monday, November 23, 2009

11/23/09 RAW

(3-hour Thanksgiving special!)

Kofi Kingston vs. Dolph Ziggler: *1/2

Sheamus vs. Finlay: 1/2*

John Cena vs. CM Punk: **3/4

MVP, Mark Henry, & R-Truth vs. Jack Swagger, Chavo Guerrero, & Chris Masters: *

Randy Orton vs. Evan Bourne: 1/4*

Melina, Kelly Kelly, & Mickie James vs. Michelle McCool, Layla, & Jillian: -*

Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith vs. Triple H & Shawn Michaels: *1/4

Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase vs. JTG & Shad Gaspard: *

Breakthrough Battle Royal: *1/2

To me, all the skits were winners. From Vince/Ventura to DX to Santino, it was very entertaining. Seeing the pie go back in Vickie's face was an epic win. And Maryse made the Gobbledy Gooker watchable.

Aside from the Cena/Punk match, the wrestling was horrid.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

11/22/09 Survivor Series

The Miz, Drew McIntyre, Sheamus, Dolph Ziggler, & Jack Swagger vs. John Morrison, Evan Bourne, Finlay, Matt Hardy, and Shelton Benjamin: **3/4

Batista vs. Rey Mysterio: **

Kofi Kingston, MVP, Mark Henry, Christian, and R-Truth vs. Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes, Ted DiBiase, William Regal, & CM Punk: ***1/4

The Undertaker vs. Chris Jericho vs. The Big Show (World Heavyweight Title): **3/4

Mickie James, Melina, Kelly Kelly, Eve Torres, & Gail Kim vs. Michelle McCool, Beth Phoenix, Jillian Hall, Layla, & Alicia Fox: *1/2

John Cena vs. Triple H vs. Shawn Michaels (WWE Title): ****

Match of the Night: John Cena vs. Triple H vs. Shawn Michaels

Trash of the Night: Divas match. It was not horrible, but everything else was better and it really seemed like the feud was between Mickie and Michelle (with Layla) -- and everyone else was just dead weight.

Three Stars:
(1) Shawn Michaels. Trust me, I marked for that opening Sweet Chin Music.
(2) Kofi Kingston. If he wasn't a star before, he is clearly a star now.
(3) Triple H. For taking eleventy billion Sweet Chin Music shots.

Analysis: Only six matches over three hours? That's good news to give all matches enough time.

Team Miz vs. Team Morrison was a good match. Bourne got his spot in, but quickly got pinned afterward, so he's still gonna be in midcard purgatory. Shelton actually got time to shine, so now I know he is still somewhat cared about in the company. Morrison got in his usual offense, which was awesome (yes Miz, I said awesome). The right people survived in this one. Miz gets to gloat more, while McIntyre and Sheamus get something to brag about now.

Batista vs. Mysterio was kept short and was entertaining for what it was. The whole point to me was to make Batista more of a monster, but of course, being in Batista's hometown of Washington, D.C., his every move was pretty much cheered. The match told a great story, and that (along with crowd reaction) is the main reason for the rating being what it is. Rey can choose to have his knee surgery now if he wants; an injury angle would not be surprising.

Team Kofi vs. Team Orton was a great match. The lone big man (Henry) gets knocked out early, leaving the other nine to go at it. And for those that think CM Punk is being demoted, that's not the case. Instead, Punk's job is really to help elevate R-Truth, and it's been working lately. Punk did a tremendous job in this one, especially when it was down to Kofi vs. Punk/Orton. Kofi looked great again, especially getting two pins on World Champions in about a six-second span. That finish was brilliant.

Taker/Jericho/Show was good, but not the best. Nice tension between JeriShow, even though they still managed to work on Taker as a unit. I thought the finish was pretty good, having Show tap to Hell's Gate. This should lead to more tension between JeriShow.

Divas Survivor Series match was good for what it was. Some quick eliminations occurred, and Beth got to look strong by pinning two Divas in mere seconds. Melina had the strongest showing of the face Divas. Nice to see Mickie on the winning side after all she went through on Smackdown. But yeah, seemed like a bunch of dead weight in there.

Cena/HHH/HBK was a Match of the Year candidate that started with a shocking Sweet Chin Music from HBK to HHH. The crowd was into it all the way, usually with split chants for and against Cena. The match had excellent drama, and the finish was well done. This too should lead to DX tension.

It should be Taker/Cena for WrestleMania (from what I've gathered), but I wouldn't be surprised to see HHH/HBK on the grandest stage of them all, either. My friend and I agree that this latter match can get five stars.

As for this PPV, another well-executed show. Excellent time management.

Overall Rating: ***1/2

Saturday, November 21, 2009

11/20/09 Smackdown

Batista vs. Matt Hardy: *

Drew McIntyre vs. Finlay: DUD

John Morrison vs. Dolph Ziggler (2 out of 3 falls; IC Title): **1/4

Mickie James vs. Layla: DUD

Rey Mysterio vs. Tyson Kidd: *

The Undertaker & Kane vs. Chris Jericho & The Big Show: **1/4

I now know what is worse than Vickie Guerrero saying "Excuse me!" all the time: her squealing after being named consultant for Smackdown.

R-Truth's response to beating CM Punk was a huge success. This program will be good for R-Truth's career.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

11/19/09 Impact

Amazing Red vs. Scott Steiner: 1/2*

Chris Sabin, Alex Shelley, James Storm, & Robert Roode vs. Brutus Magnus, Doug Williams, Sheik Abdul Bashir, & Kiyoshi: *3/4

Hamada vs. Taylor Wilde: *1/2

Abyss vs. Dr. Stevie & Raven: 3/4*

Sarita vs. Alissa Flash: *1/2

Brother Ray, Brother Devon, & Rhino vs. Matt Morgan, Hernandez, & D'Angelo Dinero (Street Fight): **

Daniels & Desmond Wolfe vs. Kurt Angle & AJ Styles: **1/2

11/19/09 Superstars

Zack Ryder vs. Shelton Benjamin: *1/2

Eric Escobar vs. Jimmy Wang Yang: *

Mark Henry vs. Cody Rhodes: *1/2

11/16/09 ROH

Chris Hero vs. Delirious: **1/4

Grizzly Redwood & Necro Butcher vs. Prince Nana & Joey Ryan (Beard vs. Beard): *1/2

Skullkrusher Rasche Brown vs. Darren Matthews: DUD

Roderick Strong vs. Bryan Danielson: ****

And with that, Danielson heads to WWE, likely with a new trademarked name. Hopefully WWE does not drop the ball here.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

11/17/09 ECW

The Hurricane vs. Paul Burchill: ***

Vance Archer vs. Johnny Andrews: DUD

Christian & R-Truth vs. CM Punk & William Regal: **1/2

11/16/09 RAW

The Miz vs. MVP (U.S. Title): *1/4

Santino Marella vs. Chavo Guerrero: -*

Melina vs. Alicia Fox (Lumberjack; Divas Title): 1/4*

Jack Swagger vs. Evan Bourne: *1/2

John Cena & The Undertaker vs. Chris Jericho & The Big Show vs. Triple H & Shawn Michaels: ***

Kofi + Orton = epic win! I could have easily rated that segment around **3/4 to *** had it really been a match.

11/15/09 Turning Point

Amazing Red vs. Homicide (X-Division Title): ***1/2

ODB, Taylor Wilde, & Sarita vs. Velvet Sky, Madison Rayne, & Lacey Von Erich (Knockouts Tag Team Titles; Knockouts Title): **

Brutus Magnus & Doug Williams vs. James Storm & Robert Roode vs. Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley (Tag Team Titles): ***1/4

Tara vs. Awesome Kong (Cage): ***

Rhino, Brother Ray, & Brother Devon vs. D'Angelo Dinero, Matt Morgan, & Hernandez: **3/4

Scott Steiner vs. Bobby Lashley (Falls Count Anywhere): *1/2

Kurt Angle vs. Desmond Wolfe: ****1/4

AJ Styles vs. Daniels vs. Samoa Joe (World Title): ****1/2

Match of the Night: AJ Styles vs. Daniels vs. Samoa Joe. A VERY close second is Kurt Angle vs. Desmond Wolfe.

Trash of the Night: Scott Steiner vs. Bobby Lashley. It was not complete trash (backstage spots were nice), but it was still a slopfest.

Five Stars: Usually it's three stars, but AJ Styles, Daniels, Samoa Joe, Desmond Wolfe, and Kurt Angle all share the top spot.

Analysis: The card looked great on paper. I just hoped it would deliver.

The opener between Red and Homicide was fantastic. It was fast-paced (which I like), and Don West helped to keep the crowd loud. I thought it was well done and showcased the X-Division very well.

The Knockouts six-woman tag match was good for what it was, but not great. Lacey Von Erich (easily the weakest in wrestling ability of the six) was kept to a minimum in ring time. Please send Lacey to wrestling school.

Tag Title match was very good. It's safe to say the tag division is a strong point for TNA.

The Tara/Kong cage match was awesome. I never thought I'd see Awesome Kong do a missile dropkick, and Tara's dive off the cage was a great finish.

Six-man tag match between the veterans and the younger guys was also good. I liked that Dinero, Morgan, and Hernandez each got time to do their stuff. However, in the end, I was just not into the match as much as most of the other matches on the card.

Steiner vs. Lashley was very sloppy. Lashley either held back on the weapon shots or doesn't know how to hit people with it. Glad it was a falls count anywhere, no-DQ match, or else it really would have been a snoozer. I really got concerned when Steiner landed on his head attempting the Frankensteiner from the top rope. Why they gave Steiner the win puzzles me. I don't really want to see this feud go long. I did give extra points for the backstage spots.

Angle/Wolfe really delivered. Wow. Outstanding match with a couple of false finishes. The various submission holds each man delivered really impressed me. It is even more amazing when you consider that Angle threw his back out early in the match (as reported the day after the PPV). This is why Angle is one of the best in the world today at what he does.

And finally, the epic triple threat. Holy bleepity bleep. Words otherwise really can't describe the match, other than it did as well as it could to live up to their five-star encounter from Unbreakable 2005. Basically, they tried, but did not quite equal it. I know a bunch of people will think this match deserved the full five, but it was still clear to me that Unbreakable 2005 was better. As much as I would love Meltzer to rate this five, I don't think it's happening. My guess is that he rates it ****1/2 to ****3/4.

Turning Point 2009 was an outstanding PPV. Steiner vs. Lashley was a downer, but the others were great and the crowd was loud all night. TNA did a fantastic job with giving matches sufficient time. It is definitely worth the time and effort to see this PPV.

Overall Rating: ****1/4

Sunday, November 15, 2009

11/6/09 Untouchable

Dragon Gate USA
(Taped 9/6/09, aired 11/6/09)

Dragon Kid vs. Masato Yoshino: ****1/4

Jigsaw & Mike Quackenbush vs. Yamato & Gran Akuma: ***1/2

Naruki Doi vs. Bryan Danielson: ****1/2

CIMA vs. Brian Kendrick: **

Davey Richards vs. Shingo: ****1/2

Ryo Saito & Genki Horiguchi vs. Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson (Open the Twin Gate Title): ***3/4

Match of the Night: They all epic win.

Trash of the Night: None.

Three Stars: Everyone again.

Analysis: Could it live up to the first Dragon Gate USA PPV? Oh hell yeah. While we had edited matches (such as CIMA/Kendrick), we had epic matches in Doi/Danielson and Richards/Shingo.

For the Richards/Shingo match, I was pretty much spent after that. Certainly one of the most amazing matches I have ever seen. Please go out of your way to see it.

Another unbelievable PPV. Again...YOU BUY NOW!

Overall Rating: ****1/2

NOTE: Here are Dave Meltzer's ratings from the Wrestling Observer Newsletter:

Dragon Kid vs. Masato Yoshino: ****1/4
Jigsaw & Mike Quackenbush vs. Yamato & Gran Akuma: **1/2
Naruki Doi vs. Bryan Danielson: ****3/4
CIMA vs. Brian Kendrick: N/A
Davey Richards vs. Shingo: ****1/2
Ryo Saito & Genki Horiguchi vs. Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson (Open the Twin Gate Title): ***1/2

Friday, November 13, 2009

11/13/09 Smackdown

CM Punk vs. R-Truth: *1/2

Natalya vs. Mickie James: 1/2*

Drew McIntyre vs. Finlay: 3/4*

John Morrison vs. Dolph Ziggler (IC Title): **1/2

Beth Phoenix vs. Lisa Taylor: DUD

The Undertaker vs. Chris Jericho: **3/4

11/12/09 Superstars

Matt Hardy vs. David Hart Smith: **1/4

Shelton Benjamin vs. Zack Ryder: *3/4

MVP vs. Ted DiBiase: **1/2

Thursday, November 12, 2009

11/12/09 Impact

Dr. Stevie vs. Abyss: 1/2*

Alissa Flash vs. Traci Brooks: 1/4*

Jim Neidhart vs. Jay Lethal: 3/4*

Awesome Kong, Velvet Sky, Madison Rayne, & Lacey Von Erich vs. ODB, Taylor Wilde, Sarita, & Tara: *1/4

Amazing Red, Chris Sabin, & Alex Shelley vs. Homicide, Sheik Abdul Bashir, & Kiyoshi: **

James Storm & Robert Roode vs. Brutus Magnus & Doug Williams: *3/4

Samoa Joe vs. AJ Styles: *3/4

The match ratings suffered likely because not enough time was given in each bout.

11/9/09 ROH

Kevin Steen & El Generico vs. Super Smash Brothers: **3/4

Chris Hero vs. Bobby Dempsey: 3/4*

Skullkrusher Rasche Brown vs. Sal Rinauro: 1/4*

Davey Richards & Eddie Edwards vs. Bryan Danielson & Roderick Strong: ***1/2

Next week: Bryan Danielson's last televised ROH match! His opponent? Roderick Strong!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

11/10/09 ECW

Goldust vs. Paul Burchill: *

Vance Archer vs. Jason Blackwell: DUD

Christian vs. William Regal (ECW Title): ***3/4

Great main event from ECW once again!

Monday, November 9, 2009

11/9/09 RAW

Alicia Fox vs. Kelly Kelly: 1/2*

Sheamus vs. (an unnamed local jobber): DUD

Evan Bourne vs. Jack Swagger: *1/4

Mark Henry vs. Randy Orton: *1/4

Ricky Hatton vs. Chavo Guerrero (Boxer vs. Wrestler): DUD

Triple H & Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho & The Big Show: **

A "Happy Birthday Jericho" sign = epic win!

Well, that whole undefeated promise of Swagger's is dead. Way to go, WWE.

Friday, November 6, 2009

11/6/09 Smackdown

Dolph Ziggler, Tyson Kidd, & David Hart Smith vs. John Morrison, Shad, & JTG: *3/4

Beth Phoenix vs. Brittany Carter: DUD

Drew McIntyre vs. Jimmy Wang Yang: DUD

Rey Mysterio vs. Mike Knox: **1/4

R-Truth vs. CM Punk: *3/4

Matt Hardy vs. Batista: **1/4

Mickie James calling Layla "Scary Spice" = win

I'm not sure what the deal with Scott Armstrong and CM Punk goes from here. I don't know if I want it to be a full-blown feud spanning months, even though Armstrong can wrestle. If it's just a bunch of ref harassment and ref revenge stuff each week, it'll get old very fast. It's still fine to me for now, but I can't see this going much further.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

11/5/09 Superstars

Santino Marella vs. Chavo Guerrero: *1/2

Jack Swagger vs. Primo: *1/2

Paul Burchill vs. Tyler Reks: *

Chris Jericho vs. Finlay: **1/2

11/5/09 Impact

James Storm & Robert Roode vs. Eric Young & Big Rob: *1/2

Desmond Wolfe vs. Cody Deaner: DUD

Tara vs. Hamada: *1/4

Bobby Lashley vs. Homicide: 1/4*

Taylor Wilde vs. Madison Rayne: DUD

AJ Styles vs. Daniels: *3/4

Matt Morgan & Hernandez vs. Brother Ray & Brother Devon: *1/4

The matches were too short. Period.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

11/2/09 ROH

Jay Briscoe & Mark Briscoe vs. Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson: **3/4

Rhett Titus vs. Alex Payne: *1/2

Claudio Castagnoli vs. Grizzly Redwood: 3/4*

Colt Cabana vs. Nigel McGuinness: **1/2

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

11/3/09 ECW

William Regal vs. Goldust: *

Shelton Benjamin vs. Zack Ryder: *1/4

Vance Archer vs. Logan Jones: DUD

Christian & Yoshi Tatsu vs. Ezekiel Jackson & Vladimir Kozlov: *3/4

Monday, November 2, 2009

11/2/09 RAW

The Miz vs. Evan Bourne (U.S. Title): **

Sheamus vs. Jamie Noble: 1/4*

Kofi Kingston, MVP, & Mark Henry vs. Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes, & Ted DiBiase: **1/4

Divas Battle Royal featuring Alicia Fox, Brie Bella, Nikki Bella, Gail Kim, Kelly Kelly, & Eve Torres: -1/2*

John Cena vs. Chris Jericho vs. The Big Show: **

The Sheamus squash match gets that 1/4* as a bonus for the power bomb on the floor. Otherwise, it's a DUD.

The battle royal was a mess. I would have rather watched paint dry.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

10/30/09 Smackdown

Dolph Ziggler vs. John Morrison: **1/4

Beth Phoenix vs. Jenny Brooks: DUD

Eric Escobar vs. Matt Hardy: 3/4*

Drew McIntyre vs. Finlay: N/A

CM Punk vs. Scott Armstrong: DUD

Chris Jericho vs. Kane: **1/2

When was the last time they had a Divas match with an actual jobber? Good to see Beth get a push.

Nice opener and nice main event.

Friday, October 30, 2009

10/26/09 ROH

Delirious vs. Sonjay Dutt vs. Joey Ryan vs. The Necro Butcher: **

Brent Albright vs. D'Lo Brown: **3/4

Kenny King vs. Eddie Kingston: **1/2

Thursday, October 29, 2009

10/29/09 Superstars

Jack Swagger vs. Primo: *1/2

Alicia Fox vs. Kelly Kelly: *1/4

Zack Ryder vs. Tyler Reks: *1/4

R-Truth, JTG, & Shad Gaspard vs. Mike Knox, Tyson Kidd, & David Hart Smith: **

10/29/09 Impact

Tara vs. Alissa Flash: *3/4

Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley vs. Brother Ray & Brother Devon: *1/2

Eric Young vs. Bobby Lashley (Legends Title): N/A

Velvet Sky, Madison Rayne, & Lacey Von Erich vs. ODB, Christy Hemme, & Hamada: *

Abyss vs. Dr. Stevie (No DQ): *1/2

Matt Morgan vs. Rhino: *1/4

Desmond Wolfe vs. Kurt Angle (Street Fight): *1/2

I was hoping for Alissa to win here because she needs the win more than Tara. Now that Melissa Anderson doesn't have to play two characters (Flash and Saeed), this would have been the perfect time to start a push for "The Future Legend."

Ref ruled the Lashley/Young match a no-contest, so thus, no rating.

Eric Young renames the "TNA Legends Title" as "TNA Global Title."

Lacey Von Erich had two spots in the match. She looked bad on both of them. Not surprised.

The show was consistent in terms of ratings, but nothing stood out. Most of the matches were just meant to advance storylines, if anything.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

10/27/09 ECW

Sheamus vs. Shelton Benjamin: *3/4

Christian vs. Yoshi Tatsu (ECW Title): ***1/2

New announcer Byron Saxton did a decent job.

Sheamus needs another finisher. The bicycle kick is not that impressive, likely because there's no "sound" to it, at least not like when Shawn Michaels does his Sweet Chin Music. Same goes for Yoshi's kick to the head.

Monday, October 26, 2009

10/26/09 RAW

Kofi Kingston vs. Chris Jericho: ***

Santino Marella & Melina vs. Chavo Guerrero & Jillian: 1/4*

MVP & Mark Henry vs. Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase: *1/2

Evan Bourne vs. The Miz: *

Sheamus vs. Jamie Noble: DUD

Triple H vs. The Big Show (Lumberjack): **

Moving Sheamus to RAW? Interesting. We'll see how that pans out.

The mixed tag was amusing when Santino was in the ring, and then turned ugly when the divas tried to duke it out. Meh.

Looks like they are pushing Kofi into a feud with Orton and Legacy. I love it. Push the Jamaican...er...West African to the moon!

Sheamus' mic work needs work. And no one cared about his match. Didn't realize Jamie Noble was still with the company.

Lumberjack match was good entertainment.

I have to say I'm disappointed with the WWE Title match for Survivor Series. Having Cena go against HHH and HBK only cements the point that we have a glass ceiling on RAW and it is practically impossible for anyone not named HHH, HBK, Cena, or Orton to break through. I would have rather held a small tournament to see who faces Cena, not just hand it to DX on a silver platter.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

10/25/09 Bragging Rights

The Miz vs. John Morrison: ***

Michelle McCool, Natalya, & Beth Phoenix vs. Melina, Kelly Kelly, & Gail Kim: *3/4

The Undertaker vs. CM Punk vs. Batista vs. Rey Mysterio (World Heavyweight Title): ***1/4

Chris Jericho, Kane, R-Truth, Matt Hardy, Finlay, Tyson Kidd, & David Hart Smith vs. Triple H, Shawn Michaels, The Big Show, Kofi Kingston, Jack Swagger, Cody Rhodes, & Mark Henry: ***1/4

John Cena vs. Randy Orton (Iron Man; WWE Title): ****

Match of the Night: John Cena vs. Randy Orton

Trash of the Night: None. To me, all five were pretty good for what they were.

Three Stars: Cena and Orton share the top spot, as their rivalry ends. Their match was one of the best WWE has offered this year. Also, kudos to Batista for turning heel.

Analysis: I liked that there are only five matches on the card. Of course, a lot of that has to do with the Iron Man Match and the 7-on-7, but still, it gives a lot of time for each match to fully develop.

Miz/Morrison was an entertaining match with some good stuff. Love that two Tough Enough guys have are really doing well in this business. Nothing real mind-blowing, but a nice way to open and it was extremely solid all around.

The Divas match was good for what it was. I'm just happy that they went through with my prediction: this match was merely to further the storyline between Beth and McCool for a future title match.

The World Title match was very good and filled with action, but felt too short. Taker basically limited the match (because he's so banged up), and while everyone had their time to shine, the match was over quicker than I wanted it to be. Everyone did hit their signature moves and there were a few false finishes, so it did its job. Again, it was nice to have Batista do a heel turn; his face run was just stale already.

The 7-on-7 was again fine for what it was, but it just seemed too rushed because it's hard to get 14 guys in the match legally. Everyone did hit their moves though, so that was nice. Swerve by Big Show at the end was predictable. And Jerishow will likely brag about it on RAW that this was the plan all along. Cue DX for a feud.

The Iron Man match was likely one of the better WWE Iron Man matches ever, but only because it was "Anything Goes." Regardless, it still did a great job of delivering on almost all levels. The pyro spot was original (to me) and I marked for that. Carnage all over the place (at least for a PG show) and a nice ending. Great storyline buildup as well. So why did it not get any higher?

First, there were (predictable) slow points midway through the match. Second, the movesets of both wrestlers were very limited and unimpressive. Cena basically used three different forms of the Attitude Adjustment (regular, off the ropes, and off the steps into the announce table), along with his usual moveset. Orton didn't fare that much better with his moves.

Very nice PPV. Worked for me with four of the five matches at three stars or above.

Overall Rating: ***3/4

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Bragging Rights Predictions

We only have five matches on the card, mainly because the 7-on-7 match should get at least 20+ minutes and the Iron Man Match will take at least 60 minutes (could have sudden death, who knows).

John Morrison vs. The Miz: A much-anticipated match in the eyes of yours truly, and I would pick this one to start the show. The fact that this is champion vs. champion makes it better because this feud really takes on the theme of "Who is the best of the best?" Again, because there are only five matches on the card, this should get some good time, likely around 15 minutes max. Expecting Morrison to pull out the win. Match will get at least *** to ***1/4 here.

Melina, Gail Kim, & Kelly Kelly vs. Michelle McCool, Natalya, & Beth Phoenix (RAW Divas vs. Smackdown Divas): It will be an OK match with basic stuff. These are six Divas that actually have wrestling talent, so it should be at least passable. As a note, Kelly's match with Gail Kim on Superstars was one of the better Divas matches I've seen lately. A winner? With all sorts of scenarios running through my head, I think the best one in terms of storyline progression would be Beth Phoenix pinning Melina to further gain the attention of Michelle McCool (setting up a future Women's Title match). I'm predicting something around *1/2 here, maybe *3/4.

Triple H, Shawn Michaels, The Big Show, Kofi Kingston, Jack Swagger, Cody Rhodes, & Mark Henry vs. Chris Jericho, Kane, R-Truth, Matt Hardy, Finlay, Tyson Kidd, & David Hart Smith (RAW vs. Smackdown 7-on-7 Bragging Rights Match): Should be a good match that gets at least 20 minutes. I like the five guys (not named Jericho or Kane) brought in to replace the original five because now it really seems like a best-of-the-best match. With that in mind, I like that guys such as Drew McIntyre and Eric Escobar were on the team at the start because it gives them at least some credibility. After all, those guys had to win a match to get on the team, and ultimately that win is more important than being on any Bragging Rights team. There are various ways on this ending, but because HHH and HBK will likely try to pull some backstage clout again, RAW will likely prevail. Match should get around ***1/2.

The Undertaker vs. CM Punk vs. Batista vs. Rey Mysterio (World Heavyweight Title): Punk is in the doghouse (as champ, Punk talked back to Taker when Taker wanted Punk to represent the company better by dressing nicer), so he's not winning. Rey is not winning because Vince is likely hestitant again to put the belt on an undersized person (his World Title reign a few years ago was not great at all). Batista is turning heel against Rey so putting the belt on him now would not be a good idea. By process of elimination, Taker retains. How will the match pan out? Batista has the win, Rey breaks the count up (rightfully so because he wants to win too), Batista gets pissed, Punk comes in and takes both of them out, and then Taker gets Punk with a Tombstone or Hell's Gate for the win. Should be a good match that gets about ***1/2 max.

John Cena vs. Randy Orton ("Anything Goes" Iron Man Match; WWE Title): This feud has been running for a few years (off and on), and the video package really does a tremendous job of setting the stage. While I like that the match is anything goes, I am not expecting blood because WWE is supposed to be PG. However, I think that, if there is any time a match needs blood, it's this one because it's the blow-off match to an extremely long feud, and the carnage each have put themselves through in the process has been noteworthy. I know that neither of these two have the moveset of a person like Shawn Michaels, Kurt Angle, AJ Styles, etc., so it could be difficult to keep the match fresh.

Here, I'm torn with a winner. I don't want Cena to lose because Smackdown is fine as it is (and RAW would be arguably losing their biggest draw). On the other hand, I don't want Cena winning because him getting the title back just cheapens the belt more. But John Canton of The Oratory makes a good point: DiBiase should basically come out and cost Orton the match in some way. Cena wins, but it paves the way for Orton/DiBiase, which is the high-profile name DiBiase needs to become a full face. This has four-star potential and could go as high as ****1/2. It all depends on what they decide to do.

So Bragging Rights should be a great PPV in terms of match quality. It should be getting some good ratings because each match will have sufficient time.

10/23/09 Smackdown

Finlay, Matt Hardy, R-Truth, Tyson Kidd, & David Hart Smith vs. JTG, Dolph Ziggler, Eric Escobar, & Drew McIntyre: *1/2

John Morrison vs. Mike Knox: *

Batista & Rey Mysterio vs. Chris Jericho & Kane: **1/4

Mickie James vs. Layla: *

The Undertaker vs. CM Punk (Submission; World Heavyweight Title): **

Mae Young FTW!

Friday, October 23, 2009

10/22/09 Superstars

Kelly Kelly vs. Gail Kim: *3/4

Tommy Dreamer & Goldust vs. Ezekiel Jackson & Vladimir Kozlov: *1/4

Drew McIntyre & Eric Escobar vs. R-Truth & Matt Hardy: **1/4

10/19/09 ROH

Kenny King vs. Jerry Lynn: **1/4

Nigel McGuinness vs. Sal Rinauro: 1/4*

Colt Cabana vs. Claudio Castagnoli: **1/2

Austin Aries vs. Bryan Danielson (World Title): ***3/4

Thursday, October 22, 2009

10/22/09 Impact

Homicide vs. Amazing Red: **

Matt Morgan vs. Scott Steiner: -*

Samoa Joe & Kevin Nash vs. AJ Styles & Daniels: *3/4

Awesome Kong vs. Raisha Saeed: *1/2

Hernandez vs. Rhino: *1/4

Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley vs. Jay Lethal & Consequences Creed (Ultimate X): ***1/4

Brutus Magnus & Doug Williams vs. James Storm & Robert Roode (Cage; Tag Team Titles): **3/4

I like those new graphics TNA is using. Very informative, especially for a first-time viewer. Design is not bad, either.

Awesome Kong speaks!

Nigel McGuinness debuts as Desmond Wolf! Talk about getting put on TV immediately. This was mere days after signing a contract with TNA. PWInsider reports that McGuinness will have a major role with TNA.

Ultimate X match was good. Those four have chemistry.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

10/20/09 ECW

Yoshi Tatsu vs. Zack Ryder: **

Sheamus vs. J.T. Quinn: N/A

Christian vs. Chris Jericho: ***1/2

Chris Jericho appearing on ECW too? Win!

Monday, October 19, 2009

10/19/09 RAW

The Big Show, Mark Henry, Kofi Kingston, Jack Swagger, & Cody Rhodes vs. MVP, Evan Bourne, Primo, Chris Masters, & Chavo Guerrero: 3/4*

Randy Orton vs. Ted DiBiase: 1/4*

Triple H vs. John Cena: ****

The Miz vs. Marty Jannetty: -*

Melina vs. Jillian Hall: DUD

Chris Jericho vs. Shawn Michaels: N/A

Good job to set the stage for Bragging Rights. Other than the HHH/Cena gem, the DX opening skit, and the Snoop Dogg segments, this was a forgettable show.

DX opening segment was awesome. Didn't seem like a lot of people got the Katie Vick reference.

The 10-man tag was just flat to me. Orton and DiBiase told a great story and got the crowd involved, which is why it got the 1/4*. However, everything else was just stalling and a couple moves.

Marty Jannetty should not be wrestling anymore. He was obviously out of shape and appeared like he put on a few more pounds. A few botches later, Miz mercifully ends the debacle. And no, Cole and King, Marty does not have it.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

10/18/09 Bound for Glory

Amazing Red vs. Chris Sabin vs. Alex Shelley vs. Suicide vs. Homicide vs. Daniels (Ultimate X; X-Division Title): ****1/4

Taylor Wilde & Sarita vs. Velvet Sky & Madison Rayne (Knockouts Tag Team Titles): *3/4

Eric Young vs. Kevin Nash vs. Hernandez (Legends Title): **1/2

Brother Ray & Brother Devon vs. Brutus Magnus & Doug Williams vs. James Storm & Robert Roode vs. Booker T & Scott Steiner (Full Metal Mayhem; TNA Tag Team Titles and IWGP Tag Team Titles): ****

ODB vs. Awesome Kong vs. Tara (Knockouts Title): **3/4

Bobby Lashley vs. Samoa Joe (Submission): **1/2

Abyss vs. Mick Foley (Monster's Ball): ***1/2

Kurt Angle vs. Matt Morgan: ***3/4

AJ Styles vs. Sting (World Title): **3/4

Match of the Night: Ultimate X. Damn.

Trash of the Night: I honestly thought there was no trash tonight. If anything, I felt the Knockouts Tag Title match was too short and the ending to AJ/Sting was a little abrupt with the way they were going, but I can overlook those.

Three Stars: (1) All Ultimate X participants (especially Daniels because he landed in a sickly manner at the end and thought he was dead); (2) Kurt Angle; (3) Matt Morgan

Honorable mention to Daffney for another sick bump.

Analysis: The card, on paper, looked great. I was just concerned that, with the high number of matches for a 3-hour PPV (nine), I felt the quality would suffer.

First of all...HOLY CRAP the crowd is loud.

Ultimate X...wow. That's all I can really say. Amazing stuff.

The Knockouts Tag Title match was good for what it was. Entertaining and kept relatively short. I would have liked more time for it, but whatever.

The Legends Title match was better than I thought. Good stuff by Eric Young to steal the title.

Full Metal Mayhem was another winner. Everyone got involved and carnage ensued. Oh, and no one died. Kudos to Scott Steiner for all that offense.

The Knockouts triple threat was another match I did not have high expectations for. However, the match was very good. Awkward moment with Tara seemingly occupied with a fan and security (which stopped the match for a bit), but overall a fine match. ODB showed some awesome strength on Kong. Finish was awesome too. The Kong/Saeed split continues.

The Joe/Lashley match was also better than I thought. Great use of submission moves and counters.

Monster's Ball was a sick spotfest. We knew we'd get the blood, and Abyss got lacerated pretty good. Daffney took yet another sick spot (through the barbed wire bed), and Dr. Stevie got the tacks in a very entertaining match.

Angle/Morgan was one of my favorites. While Angle did prevail, Morgan was booked extremely strong.

AJ/Sting was a bit of a letdown (pointing to the finish), but the match delivered because it was Sting's home state and everyone was buzzing about whether Sting would hang them up.

So this means AJ/Angle is next? Woohoo!

Overall this PPV was the best TNA has put on this year, and definitely in my top five of the year. The crowd was red hot all night. The worst match was still very much watchable, and TNA's booking staff did an excellent job in giving matches the perfect amount of time. We had two four-star matches, two matches over three stars, and everything else was still consistently good. Hats off to TNA for a great PPV.

Overall Rating: ****

Friday, October 16, 2009

10/16/09 Smackdown

Dolph Ziggler vs. Finlay vs. Mike Knox: **1/4

JTG & Shad Gaspard vs. Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith: *1/2

Eric Escobar vs. Matt Hardy: *

Drew McIntyre vs. R-Truth: *1/2

Rey Mysterio vs. Batista: *3/4

I love the fact that Smackdown is trying its hardest to elevate new stars. I like all the people picked for the Smackdown Seven...except one. I am not fond of putting Eric Escobar on Team Smackdown mere weeks after he debuted. He has only had one match on Smackdown so far, and he hasn't proven anything to me yet.

Dirt Sheet was awesome again, as usual.

10/12/09 ROH

Austin Aries vs. Alex Payne (ROH World Title): *1/4

Necro Butcher vs. Bison Smith: 1/2*

Tyler Black vs. Rhett Titus: **1/4

KENTA vs. Chris Hero: ***1/2

10/15/09 Super Impact

(Special 3-hour Super Impact)

Velvet Sky, Madison Rayne, & Lacey Von Erich vs. ODB, Awesome Kong, & Tara: 1/2*

Amazing Red vs. Suicide (X-Division Title): *3/4

Hernandez vs. Doug Williams, Brutus Magnus, & Rob Terry (Gauntlet): *1/2

Daniels vs. D'Angelo Dinero: **1/4

Hamada vs. Alissa Flash (Falls Count Anywhere): **

Bobby Lashley vs. Rhino (Stretcher): *

AJ Styles vs. Kurt Angle: ****1/4

Styles/Angle is TNA's Free TV Match of the Year. No doubt there. I cannot recall the last time a match got 20 minutes on Impact. Come to think of it, not many matches on TNA PPVs get 20 minutes.

Some may think I rated the six-Knockout tag match too low, but Lacey Von Erich didn't actually get tagged in; Awesome Kong attacked Tara and ODB, then left at the start (to further storylines); and then Tara kicked ODB to lead to The Beautiful People's win (again furthering storylines). The match, in of itself, was pretty junk.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

10/15/09 Superstars

Mark Henry vs. Chris Masters: *1/4

Vladimir Kozlov vs. Tommy Dreamer: *1/4

CM Punk vs. John Morrison: **1/2

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

10/13/09 ECW

Ezekiel Jackson vs. Goldust: *1/4

Paul Burchill vs. The Hurricane: **

Christian & Yoshi Tatsu vs. William Regal & Zack Ryder: **1/4

Seemed like the crowd was dead most of the night, and that affected my match ratings.

Monday, October 12, 2009

10/12/09 RAW

The Big Show vs. Chris Jericho: DUD

Jillian Hall vs. Mickie James (Divas Title): DUD

Melina vs. Jillian Hall (Divas Title): DUD

Cody Rhodes vs. Ted DiBiase vs. John Cena: *1/2

Jack Swagger vs. MVP: 3/4*

Kofi Kingston vs. Evan Bourne: *1/2

Gail Kim, Kelly Kelly, & Maria Menounos vs. Beth Phoenix, Rosa Mendes, & Alicia Fox: 1/4*

Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase vs. John Cena & Randy Orton: *

This show epic fails.

How, you ask? Simply put, it somehow got me to rate Jericho's match a DUD. Also, divas got air time to wrestle, and that failed (no surprise). It's hard to say this show was any good when:

(1) The highest rated match doesn't even get two stars, and
(2) The average match rating for the night was HALF A STAR. Seriously.

Melina was the first Diva to be announced as part of a seven-Diva, tri-brand trade made possible by guest host Nancy O'Dell. But seriously, did we really need Jillian to be a transitional champ for all of about five minutes? It just cheapens the belt. And let's face it, the Divas Title was actually one of the titles that had actually been doing well in giving champions long reigns (likely moreso because there is a lack of true wrestling talent).

In the end, three DUDs started the show off, which is a first under my ratings system. And technically, those matches were bad enough such that, if the Divas matches went longer than four minutes, I'd be giving them negative stars.

Hey, how do you botch a 24-second match? Ask the Divas!

Kofi's Trouble in Paradise hitting a flying Evan Bourne was pretty cool in an entertaining match that got too little time for me to enjoy fully. It got the same rating as the long-winded Triple Threat. Even with the Triple Threat getting a stronger crowd reaction (due to Cena), the offense of Legacy was just boring. I could have worked on my law memo and come back and not missed much.

The best part of the night? Santino. A close second would be Hornswoggle delivering "Sweet Chin Music" to a Shawn Michaels cardboard cutout. Hell, Hornswoggle has given new meaning to the term "Sweet Shin Music."

As noted earlier, seven Divas are changing brands in that tri-brand trade. Here they are:

(1) Melina traded from Smackdown to RAW
(2) Beth Phoenix traded from RAW to Smackdown
(3) Mickie James traded from RAW to Smackdown
(4) Rosa Mendes traded from RAW to ECW
(5) Brie Bella traded from ECW to RAW
(6) Nikki Bella traded from ECW to RAW
(7) Eve traded from Smackdown to RAW

Friday, October 9, 2009

10/9/09 Smackdown

Rey Mysterio vs. Chris Jericho: ***

Michelle McCool vs. Eve Torres: *1/4

John Morrison vs. Dolph Ziggler (IC Title): **1/2

Kane & Drew McIntyre vs. Matt Hardy & R-Truth: *1/4

CM Punk vs. Batista: *3/4

Rey + Jericho = win. Morrison + Ziggler = win again. The other matches were watchable but nothing really that impressive. Overall, the show was good.

10/5/09 ROH

Sonjay Dutt vs. Delirious: **1/2

Eddie Kingston vs. Kyle Matthews: 1/4*

Roderick Strong vs. Joey Ryan: **1/4

Tag Team Honor Rumble featuring Jay Briscoe & Mark Briscoe, Ernie Osiris & Jimmy Rave, Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson, Jon Davis & Kory Chavis, Rhett Titus & Kenny King, Brent Albright & Erick Stevens, Kevin Steen & El Generico, and Davey Richards & Eddie Edwards: **3/4

10/8/09 Superstars

Ted DiBiase vs. Evan Bourne: **1/4

Shelton Benjamin vs. Sheamus: *

Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith vs. JTG & Shad Gaspard: **

Thursday, October 8, 2009

10/8/09 Global Impact

Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley vs. Yujiro & Naito (IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Titles): ***1/4

Kurt Angle, Kevin Nash, Masahiro Chono, & Riki Choshu vs. Giant Bernard, Takashi Iizuka, Tomohiro Ishii, & Karl Anderson: *3/4

Brother Ray & Brother Devon vs. Togi Makabe & Toru Yano (Hardcore; IWGP Tag Team Titles): **1/4

I thought this show was not bad at all. Pretty good, in fact. Of course, if you expected a lively crowd, you were likely very disappointed. Japanese pro wrestling fans are different from other fans; they are very respectful and are not as rowdy.

10/8/09 Impact

Hernandez vs. Kevin Nash (Legends Title): 1/4*

Amazing Red vs. Samoa Joe (X-Division Title): *

D'Angelo Dinero & Homicide vs. Daniels & Suicide: *1/2

Madison Rayne, Velvet Sky, Alissa Flash, & Traci Brooks vs. Taylor Wilde, Sarita, Hamada, & Christy Hemme (Elimination): *1/2

ODB vs. Tara (Knockouts Title): *

Abyss & Matt Morgan vs. Mick Foley & Kurt Angle: *3/4

Not that good of a show.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

10/6/09 ECW

Ezekiel Jackson & Vladimir Kozlov vs. Tommy Dreamer & Goldust: *1/4

Yoshi Tatsu vs. William Regal: -1/2*

Christian vs. Zack Ryder: **3/4

Regal/Yoshi was a horrible match. Regal tried to cover up for Yoshi's major errors, but even a ring veteran like Regal can't cover everything up. The match slowed down to an agonizing crawl, and the crowd really could not get into it until the end. Maybe it was because the crowd could sense the match was ending.

You could sense a DQ finish coming in the Christian/Ryder main event. Tiger Bomb from Ryder was awesome. Good match, abrupt sucky ending.

Looks like the new ring announcer (Lauren Mayhew) made her on-camera debut tonight. She did not impress me at all. She'll get better, though. After all, Lilian Garcia did not start out the best either (and made many flubs along her 10-year run), but turned out fantastic overall.

Monday, October 5, 2009

10/5/09 RAW

Mickie James, Kelly Kelly, Eve Torres, Nikki Bella, Brie Bella, Melina, & Maria vs. Michelle McCool, Beth Phoenix, Natalya, Alicia Fox, Layla, Rosa Mendes, & Jillian Hall (Diva Bowl): *1/2

Jack Swagger vs. Primo: *

MVP & Mark Henry vs. Chavo Guerrero & Chris Masters: *1/4

The Miz vs. Kofi Kingston (U.S. Title): **3/4

Triple H & Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho & The Big Show: ***

At first, I thought Gail Kim was in the doghouse because she was only the ref for the Diva Bowl. However, I then learned that Gail, like Mickie James several weeks ago, busted one of her implants. The match, by the way, was actually entertaining.

Cena/Orton (for the eleventy billionth time) will (likely) end once and for all in a 60-Minute Iron Man Match? Well, slap me silly. Then Orton added the stipulation of "anything goes" and if Cena loses, he leaves RAW forever? I LOVE this. I'm not promising this match will automatically get over four stars from me, but it has a legit chance to garner Second Best WWE Match of the Year (behind Taker/HBK). I figure as long as we don't have a 1-0 Sudden Death deal, the sky's the limit.

Miz is the new U.S. champ. And now, I want Morrison vs. Miz at Bragging Rights!

This was a very good RAW. Kudos to Ben Roethlisberger, his O-Line, and WWE.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

10/4/09 Hell in a Cell

The Undertaker vs. CM Punk (Hell in a Cell; World Heavyweight Title): **1/4

John Morrison vs. Dolph Ziggler (IC Title): ***1/2

Mickie James vs. Alicia Fox (Divas Title): 1/2*

Chris Jericho & The Big Show vs. Batista & Rey Mysterio (Unified Tag Team Titles): ***

Randy Orton vs. John Cena (Hell in a Cell; WWE Title): ***3/4

Drew McIntyre vs. R-Truth: *

Kofi Kingston vs. The Miz vs. Jack Swagger (U.S. Title): **3/4

Triple H & Shawn Michaels vs. Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase (Hell in a Cell): ****

Match of the Night: Triple H & Shawn Michaels vs. Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase. Special mention must go to Morrison/Ziggler for a job well done.

Trash of the Night: If you want to go by ratings, it is the divas match (Mickie James vs. Alicia Fox). Hell, McIntyre/R-Truth were not far behind, and shouldn't have even been on the card to begin with.

Yet again, I cannot help but think that Undertaker/Punk has to be mentioned here. For all the hype that was created, for all the airtime Smackdown gave it, for all the hoopla to unban Taker's Hell's Gate finisher and to give Taker another shot at the title, and especially the fact that it was contested inside Hell in a Cell, that match was another letdown. I'm not saying the match was bad; it was just nothing spectacular and should have been a lot better. If anything, WWE was pushed for time and Undertaker/Punk was the sacrificial lamb. They should have nixed R-Truth/McIntyre and given Undertaker/Punk about 10 more minutes.

Three Stars: Here, I will actually go with four young upcoming stars: John Morrison, Dolph Ziggler, Cody Rhodes, and Ted DiBiase. Each of these four individuals showed me something tonight. The future of WWE is in great hands.

Honorable mention goes to Chris Jericho and Rey Mysterio for their work.

Analysis: I was shocked to see Taker/Punk start. It reminds me of when WWE bookended the Elimination chamber matches. It was not a bad match. Punk had some nice counters, and I liked the suicide dive onto Taker and crashing into the cell. Taker hit signature moves and Punk kicked out of almost all of them. The finish was pretty much standard: Taker hits the Tombstone and wins in 10 minutes. However, you could tell WWE really held the two back again. Lame, especially for all the buildup it had. We didn't need the unbanning of Hell's Gate. We didn't even need the cell for this. A No DQ match would have accomplished practically the same thing.

Morrison vs. Ziggler was a fantastic match showcasing the future of WWE in about 15 minutes. I hope this feud lasts a while longer, because this is real good stuff. I'm glad the Smackdown brand is doing something right and pushing a guy like Ziggler. I may not care for his ring attire or his ring entrance theme, but the guy is damn good. I just hope Ziggler breaks through soon, or else he will become labeled as "that guy who choked under pressure again."

Mickie and Alicia wrestled a predictable basic match where the crowd didn't care. I didn't care much for it either. Alicia hit a Northern Lights Suplex...that was cool. Oh yeah, Mickie retained her title. I managed to care for the last 10 seconds of the match.

The Unified Tag Title match was also good. I loved watching Jericho and Mysterio go at it again, and having two people like Batista and Big Show actually worked out. Nice solid finish with Big Show punching Mysterio when Rey was trying some springboard move.

Orton and Cena had a very good Hell in a Cell match, but I don't think it was the best match they've ever had. Each of them hit their finisher and I liked how the ropes don't break a submission hold; that really helped this match out. The cell was used well, but I marvel at Orton's use of the ropes to help take Cena out. The punt was fine to end the match, although, again, the match seemed too restricted.

The problem I have with the Orton match: WHY put the belt on Cena in the first place?! I would have been fine with having Cena pass out from the pain at Breaking Point and let Orton retain. Cena could still claim to not quit, and Orton would have the belt, so everyone wins. But here, the belt switches back and forth, and this hurts the credibility of the WWE Title. I could care less on how many world title reigns someone has. To me, another way of looking at a multiple-time champion is that he had to lose the belt just as many times.

Drew McIntyre and R-Truth wrestled. OK, fine. Did I really care? Nope. And the crowd didn't care much either. It was a basic match, way better than the divas match. Honestly, this should not have been anywhere NEAR this card. So what if these two brawled on Smackdown the last few weeks? That doesn't mean these two earn a PPV spot over the likes of Christian, William Regal, and, dare I say it, even Zack Ryder.

U.S. Title triple threat was also good. I liked that each of them hit their finisher (Kofi more than once). It had a decent flow, and I thought the match was as good as it could really have been. As much as I like Kofi retaining (so the belt doesn't just become what the WWE Title has in being exchanged so frequently), I wouldn't mind letting Miz or Swagger step up.

Match of the Night honors, by a slim margin, went to DX vs. Legacy. The proverbial fast start meant chaos from the outset. I really loved the divide-and-conquer deal locking one person outside while a 2-on-1 beatdown took place. Rhodes and DiBiase proved yet again, even in defeat, that they are top performers who will one day lead this company. While the crowd was deader than Orton/Cena, it made up for that with great storytelling. As a note, I do miss the days where it was standard on PPVs for the table to break, especially the Spanish table. Nonetheless, it is a Match of the Year candidate in my book.

On paper, the card looked very good. The only question I had left was whether the actual matches would live up to the hype. For the most part, I was satisfied. Four of the eight matches were at least three stars. Morrison and Ziggler impressed me a lot, and two of the three HIAC matches delivered. I say the PPV was above average, but I can't help but think how much better it could have really been if they had one less match on the card and given Taker/Punk more time.

Overall Rating: ***

Friday, October 2, 2009

10/2/09 Smackdown

A Decade of Smackdown Celebration!

Batista vs. Kane: *3/4

Dolph Ziggler & The Miz vs. John Morrison & Kofi Kingston: **

Michelle McCool vs. Melina (Lumberjack; Women's Title): 1/2*

The Undertaker, Triple H, Shawn Michaels, & John Cena vs. CM Punk, Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes, & Ted DiBiase: **3/4

Trashed Michael Cole + grossed out Chris Jericho + queasy Big Show = entertaining segment

And Santino also rules.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

10/1/09 Superstars

Shad Gaspard vs. Tyson Kidd: **

Sheamus vs. Tyler Reks: *1/2

Kofi Kingston vs. The Miz: **1/4

Interesting that they are now billing Kofi Kingston from his true home of Ghana, West Africa.

10/1/09 Impact

Amazing Red vs. Jay Lethal vs. Consequences Creed vs. Sheik Abdul Bashir vs. Kiyoshi (Ladder): *1/2

Kevin Nash vs. Dr. Stevie: 3/4*

Christy Hemme vs. Traci Brooks: 1/2*

ODB vs. Awesome Kong (Knockouts Title): 1/4*

Hernandez vs. Kurt Angle: **

Matt Morgan vs. Eric Young: *

Brother Ray, Brother Devon, & Bobby Lashley vs. Brutus Magnus, Doug Williams, & Rhino: *3/4

So far, I like the feud between the Main Event Mafia and World Elite, mainly because it is helping elevate people in World Elite.

Lacey Von Erich joins The Beautiful People. I did not read the spoilers, but this is not a huge surprise. Lacey definitely fits in well with TBP's gimmick, and her bombshell look is a pleasant sight for male viewers. I'd honestly take her over Angelina Love any day. However, I do agree that Lacey Von Erich has historically not been the best worker (WWE hired her in the past, but she got released within four months for laziness issues). Von Erich is known for her great looks and her storied family history, but she has to prove her in-ring skills to me. Iron claw? Big deal.

This seems to be the reason for Internet reports stating that TBP will be used more in backstage segments and other types of skits instead of in-ring work.

I hope Madison Rayne overcomes her confidence issues. She has looked timid on the microphone, and in order for her to realize her full potential, she needs to break out of that shell.

9/28/09 ROH

Tyler Black & Jerry Lynn vs. Kenny King & Rhett Titus: ***

Sara Del Rey vs. Nikki Roxx: *

Sonjay Dutt vs. Alex Payne: *1/2

Brent Albright vs. Claudio Castagnoli (Cage): ***1/2

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

9/29/09 ECW

Shelton Benjamin vs. Paul Burchill: *3/4

Christian, Tommy Dreamer, Yoshi Tatsu, & Goldust vs. William Regal, Ezekiel Jackson, Vladimir Kozlov, & Zack Ryder: **1/2

Excellent selling of injuries by Shelton. However, the match was otherwise pretty slow and pretty much one-sided until Shelton hit his finisher.

The real reason for Tiffany's absence tonight was not a car accident (as stated by William Regal at the beginning of the show), but a broken humerus suffered at a FCW taping.

Monday, September 28, 2009

9/28/09 RAW

Chris Jericho & The Big Show vs. MVP & Mark Henry (Unified Tag Team Titles): **3/4

Mickie James vs. Rosa Mendes: -**

Jack Swagger vs. Evan Bourne: *

Chavo Guerrero & Chris Masters vs. Santino Marella & Hornswoggle: DUD

John Cena vs. Chris Jericho, The Big Show, & Randy Orton (Gauntlet): *1/2

The opener was very good. The Divas match was bad...very bad. Everything else was average to below average. If they had actually given the Swagger/Bourne match more time (which they seemingly refuse to do on RAW), the rating would be much higher.

Justin Roberts appears to be the new RAW announcer, taking over for the departing Lilian Garcia. It's likely that either Tony Chimel will work both ECW and Smackdown, or we could see the new announcer (Lauren Mayhew) work one of the shows, or even just one match at first to break her in for television.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

9/25/09 Smackdown

John Morrison & Finlay vs. Dolph Ziggler & Mike Knox: **

Kane vs. Slam Master J: DUD

Batista vs. The Big Show: **

David Hart Smith vs. JTG: *

CM Punk vs. The Undertaker: **1/4

Batista with an ankle lock?! WTF.

9/21/09 ROH

Austin Aries vs. Grizzly Redwood (ROH World Title): *

Erick Stevens vs. Brandon Day: 1/2*

Necro Butcher vs. Jimmy Rave: *1/2

Bryan Danielson, Roderick Strong, & KENTA vs. Eddie Edwards, Davey Richards, & Chris Hero: ***3/4

Thursday, September 24, 2009

9/24/09 Impact

Suicide vs. D'Angelo Dinero (Street Fight): ***

Brother Devon vs. Rhino: DUD

Taylor Wilde & Sarita vs. Tara & ODB (Knockouts Tag Team Titles): **1/4

Samoa Joe vs. Daniels vs. Homicide (X-Division Title): **3/4

Hernandez & Matt Morgan vs. Kurt Angle & Eric Young: *

Bobby Lashley vs. Jethro Holliday: 1/4*

Booker T & Scott Steiner vs. Mick Foley & Abyss (Tag Team Titles): 1/2*

This was basically a hit-or-miss show. Some good stuff, but some ugly stuff.

Foley vs. Abyss? Make it hardcore rules, and we may have something real good.

9/24/09 Superstars

Primo vs. Chris Masters: **

Goldust vs. William Regal: *1/4

Michelle McCool & Layla vs. Melina & Maria: *1/2

Matt Hardy vs. Kane: *3/4

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

9/22/09 ECW

Yoshi Tatsu vs. Paul Burchill: **3/4

Vladimir Kozlov & Ezekiel Jackson vs. Dustin Brady & Brandon Young: DUD

Christian vs. Zack Ryder (ECW Title): ***1/2

I must say, that was a very nice show.

Monday, September 21, 2009

9/21/09 RAW

Triple H vs. Cody Rhodes: *1/4

The Miz vs. Evan Bourne: *1/2

Beth Phoenix vs. Mickie James: DUD

Kofi Kingston vs. Jack Swagger (U.S. Title): N/A

Cedric the Entertainer vs. Chavo Guerrero: -*

Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, & The Big Show vs. John Cena, MVP, & Mark Henry: *3/4

WWE fails again. This episode sucked.

On a sadder note, this was Lilian Garcia's final show after being with the company for 10 years. She may have had some infamous screwups in announcing, but overall she was very good and loved by all the guys and gals in the back. Perhaps later down the road she will make a special appearance or two.

Does this open the way for Howard Finkel to come back to announce on a more regular basis? We'll see.