Tuesday, October 30, 2012

10/29/12 RAW

Ryback vs. JTG: N/A (squash)

Randy Orton vs. Wade Barrett: *3/4

Kane & Daniel Bryan vs. Titus O'Neil & Darren Young: *1/2

Antonio Cesaro vs. Kofi Kingston: *

Heath Slater & Jinder Mahal vs. Santino Marella & Zack Ryder: *1/2

AJ vs. Beth Phoenix: 1/2*

Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow vs. Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara: **3/4

Alberto Del Rio vs. Justin Gabriel: *3/4

We're in Charlotte, NC. Cole and Ross on commentary.

Punk starts the show, ribs all bandaged. Did Punk just call Vickie the GM? Thought it was managing supervisor. Like it matters at this point. Punk said he merely took advantage of the situation and had nothing to do with the ref's actions. Mick Foley interrupts everything and says Punk blew it in HIAC. Stuff about tradition. Nice segway into a traditional Survivor Series match...Team Foley vs. Team Punk. Ryback enters and Punk/Heyman escape through the crowd.

Oh, JTG's still employed. Ryback squashed him. Well, at least JTG gets paid for this. Ryback isn't hurt, he's hungry. Feed him Punk!

Next up is Barrett and Orton. Ross notes Barrett had a "day off" (not on PPV), while Orton had to deal with Alberto Del Rio. Wade targets Orton's injured left arm. Pretty formulaic match here, with a few more counters. Orton ducks the Souvenir and hits the RKO for three.

AJ wants to compete under Vickie's administration. Vintage job interview segment. Vickie wants one good reason why she should give AJ a WWE contract.

Team Hell No faces the Primetime Players. PTPs with the all-pink trunks and black boots. Kane with the chokeslam to D-Young. DB tags himself in and gets the NO lock submission win. Kane pyros and bickering on who the tag champs are.

Conveniently, no one can locate Brad Maddox, the ref who screwed Ryback at HIAC. Brad's now the "rogue referee."

Vickie comes forth with the "hard evidence" that Cena and AJ had this so-called "affair." She calls out Cena. First video with Cena asking AJ to In-n-Out Burger. Cena says it was a joke. Second video with Cena consoling AJ. Third piece of evidence is a photo of Cena and AJ at dinner. Nice to see Cena rocks the Cena shirt at a fancy restaurant. Fourth video -- probably with a cell phone camera -- of Cena beckoning AJ to get into the elevator. WTF, is this AJ Styles and Claire Lynch all over again?!?! "You are busted!" chants. Gotta love all this circumstantial evidence crap. Just shaking my head as to why WWE would seriously even "borrow" this type of storyline. Ziggler interrupts to rub salt in the wound. So Ziggler and Cena should feud after all. Might be the last piece Dolph needs to get to full-blown main-event status.

Cesaro promo bashing Halloween, then faces Kofi in a clash of the champions. Miz on commentary to tout his accomplishments. Kofi tosses Cesaro into Miz. Miz goes after Kofi and the ref rings the bell for the DQ. Double team on Kofi. R-Truth comes in for the save. Perhaps Truth now gets in line for a U.S. Title shot. Why not? He's not doing anything else for the time being -- unless he's watching after Little Jimmy.

AJ won't sacrifice dignity for anything and is about to walk out, but Vickie hires her, given AJ doesn't lay a hand on her again. AJ's first match is against Beth Phoenix.

Interview with Slater, Jinder, and McIntyre. What is 3MB? Jinder says he's the fun one. Honestly, that's a good look for McIntyre. Would likely keep him in midcard forever, though, unless it's tweaked. They even have a team hand sign. Yay. Yes, JR, that was one of the worst interviews ever.

It's time for Team CoBro! Usual tag match. Hot tag to Santino. Cobra about to strike. Drew-ference ends all that. Looks like Slater has a new finisher -- basically a Rocker Dropper + twisting the opponent to his back on the way down.

AJ and Beth are next. Beth with a lot of trash talk at the start. AJ takes some punishment, but then rolls Beth up for three. Vickie says AJ could do better and restarts the match. Beth attacks AJ from behind and hits the Glam Slam for three.

Sheamus promo, vowing to get the World Title back. Show comes out and says Sheamus came up short and will never get the title back. Gonna be Custer's Last Stand all over again. White Noise to Sheamus. Statement made.

Cena's happy AJ get to compete again. Vickie with the snooping. Sounds about right.

Beth wants to thank Vickie for restarting that match. Vickie pretty much blames it on Beth and fires the Glamazon. And that folks, should confirm that Beth's leaving the company. Glad she got one final "win" on her way out. Hope Beth and Edge (er...Adam Copeland) have a great time together. Can this NHL lockout end so they can go to more Devils games?

But on a serious note, hope all's well over on the East Coast after Hurricane/Superstorm Sandy. I got a bunch of friends there myself.

Mysterio and Cara face Team Rhodes Scholars. Gotta love the lethal kicking and the flying from the masked guys. Rhodes Scholars work over Cara, then Rey with the hot tag. Rhodes Scholars attack Mysterio, then Cara's time to fly. Pretty good ending. Sin Cara set for the senton, but Cody pulls Sandow out of the way. Terminus on Cara ends it.

Cena in the ring as the spokesman for WWE's partnership with Susan G. Komen and breast cancer. it's the last RAW of the month, which was all about Breast Cancer Awareness. The talent also line up on the stage to witness this. $1 million from WWE for the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Classy stuff right there.

Nice hairdo, Justin Gabriel. Valiant effort against Del Rio, but you figure ADR was winning that one.

Punk's on the cover of WWE '13! YES!

Show ends with the picks for Team Foley and Team Punk. Punk's teammates are Miz, Cody Rhodes, Damien Sandow, and Alberto Del Rio. Add Heyman and Ricardo at ringside as guys to watch out for.

Foley comes out and announces Kofi Kingston, Daniel Bryan, Kane, and Randy Orton. Then Foley says he's not competing (thank God). And the predictable fifth man for the team: Ryback. Brawl commences. Punk retreats as Ryback stares Punk down all the way. Ryback decimates Cody to send a message.

Monday, October 29, 2012

10/28/12 Hell in a Cell

Randy Orton vs. Alberto Del Rio: **3/4

Daniel Bryan & Kane vs. Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow (Tag Team Titles): **3/4

Kofi Kingston vs. Miz (IC Title): ***

Antonio Cesaro vs. Justin Gabriel (U.S. Title): **

Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara vs. Titus O'Neil & Darren Young: **3/4

Big Show vs. Sheamus (World Heavyweight Title): ***1/2

Eve Torres vs. Layla vs. Kaitlyn (Divas Title): *1/2

CM Punk vs. Ryback (Hell in a Cell; WWE Title): **1/2

JBL, Cole, and Ross on commentary tonight. With Lilian Garcia hit by a car over the weekend (she was released from the hospital on Sunday or so), Tony Chimel did the Smackdown announcing duties for the PPV.

We start the show with Del Rio and Orton. Doesn't take long for this one to get physical. ADR works on Orton's left arm throughout the match. Nice array of moves there. ADR is sure to take full advantage of the ref's 5-count before breaking holds. Ricardo and Alberto mock Orton's signature poses, and that pisses the Viper off. Ricardo pulled Orton's shoulder into the ropes, ADR with cross armbreaker again. Orton counters out. ADR goes for the enzuigiri in the corner and Orton counters into an AWESOME RKO for three.

Next up is the tag title match. Gotta love how over that "YES!" chant is. Team Hell No with some nice teamwork at the start. JBL says the goat can fly! YES! DB tags himself in as Kane goes for the chokeslam. Headbutt from DB, but Kane pulls DB off Cody?! Vintage bickering. Cody backdropped onto Kane. DB nukes Kane on accident with the running knee. Yeah, way to go, goat face. Cross Rhodes to DB but Kane broke it up. Kane goes berserk on Cody and Sandow. Ref loses control and calls for the bell. More Kane carnage. So Rhodes Scholars wins by DQ but Team Hell No keeps the titles.

Second title match of the night is the IC Title bout between Kofi and Miz. Both guys just miss their finishers in the first few seconds of the match. Crowd was a bit dead for parts of this one, deserved a better reaction overall. Can't doubt Kofi's athleticism here. Nice job by Miz to attack Kofi's left leg and ground the high-flyer. The padding's all removed on Kofi's left boot. Multiple counters out of the SCF, Miz booted to the outside. Miz gets back in and eats Trouble in Paradise for three. Great match here. Post-match interview with Kofi. Miz brought out the "Wildcat" in Kofi. I like the new nickname. Definitely one of Kofi's best matches to date.

Kane and DB continue to bicker:

Kane: "Old McDonald had a GOAT! E-I-E-I..."
Daniel: "NO!!!"

U.S. Title match between Cesaro and Gabriel. Cesaro basically not speaking English for much of the promo. Nice to see the South African get a push. Gabriel the thrillseeker went out to surf the waves as Hurricane Sandy approached? Sandy at the time wasn't even that bad in that area...that's what they won't tell you. Good counters here. Gabriel landed weird when missing that 450 splash, but back to that AJ Styles moonsault reverse DDT for two. Cesaro with that Euro uppercut as Gabriel did a springboard move to the outside. JG basically KO'd. Deadlift neutralizer gets three.

Nice tension teased between Heyman and Vickie. Yeah, the match is still on, despite Heyman wanting Punk out of the match.

Oh, and the theme song for the PPV ("Sandpaper") just happens to be from Jericho's band, Fozzy. Nice that Y2J still gets the love even though he still can't come to terms on a new contract. Understandable that Jericho wants all the control on his outside bookings. He's had a lengthy career with amazing storylines, been incredibly durable without major injuries, and should be a first-ballot WWE Hall of Famer.

Grammy award-winning artist Chilli rockin' out to the Primetime Players' music. Rey and Sin Cara face the PTPs on the PPV. Gotta keep the masked ones on PPV for the fan appeal and the merchandise sales, I guess. Cara has indeed looked better in the ring since teaming with Mysterio. Rey gets the hot tag here House of fire, to say the least. D-Young tries to get that gutbuster in, but Rey counters into 619 and splash for three. I think Sin Cara has been used very well in this partnership. He really hasn't had to change his moveset, and he gets involved only when he needs to.

World Title match is next. Sheamus comes out first, then Big Show. Main event intros. This is a typical Big Show match, lots of power moves and striking. Show with the methodical Sheamus beatdown, tossing the Irishman around like a rag doll. It's just not something I can continue to watch for a lengthy time. Show unable to put Sheamus away, even with a Vader Bomb and a chokeslam. Sheamus showing he's a resilient champ despite all the punishment. Sheamus splashes Show against the ringpost a couple of times. You can see the welts on the left side of Sheamus' chest. White Noise from Sheamus, but only two! Awesome show of power there. Show caught Sheamus coming with the Brogue Kick and hits the WMD! ONLY TWO! Finally, we got exciting stuff here! Show primed for another WMD. Sheamus ducks. BROGUE! TWO! WTF, nice. Nice storytelling on the faces of Sheamus and Show. Announcers hype how devastating and final  each of those finishers (WMD and Brogue Kick) have been. Fans behind this one and Sheamus signals for another Brogue Kick. Show sidesteps and decks Sheamus with the WMD! New champ! Ihave to admit, after a predictable slow start, the end was outstanding. Sheamus trended on Twitter, woohoo.

Zack Ryder is dressed as a witch, a.k.a. Eve Torres. Long says Zack is one letter off. Ha.

Punk wants Vince to call the WWE Title match off. Vince basically refuses and wants Punk to show he's the best in the world.

Time for the Divas triple threat title match. Layla and Kaitlyn double-team Eve. Some sloppy moments during the Layla/Kaitlyn chain wrestling segment. Eve with some good submissions on Kaitlyn -- if only the crowd cared. Eve and Layla doing the splits -- and again no one cares. Even Kaitlyn with an armbar submission. Is Sara Del Rey partially responsible for this? Layla hits her Bombshell kick. Layla and Eve basically spend a few seconds trying to pin Kaitlyn. Kaitlyn now with Trish Stratus' Stratusfaction move. Way to recycle finishers, I guess. Impressive power display from Kaitlyn at the end, countering Layla's crossbody like John Cena would. Powerslam from Kaitlyn, but Eve with a senton to take Kaitlyn out. Eve pins Layla for three. A very respectable match. Unfortunately, the crowd still treats it as a damn bathroom break.

Show promo saying he has reached the pinnacle of the business. Meanwhile, Sheamus is being tended to by a doctor.

The cell is lowered. Champ out first. Punk has been champ now for 343 consecutive days. Ryback sporting a red singlet this time. Main event intros. Hey, remember that ref who "botched" the finish to one of Punk's matches? He's back to ref this one. Crowd with the "feed me more" chants. The cell door is locked.

Bell rings and Punk plays keepaway as long as possible. Ryback then starts decimating Punk in the cell. Punk wants out but there's no way out. Punk with the fire extinguisher to get the upper hand. Punk with a chair, but Ryback kicks it back in Punk's face. Punk with the Savage top-rope double axe handles. Match seems to remind me of the Savage/Warrior career-ending match. Ryback went full-blast into the steps trying to spear Punk. What a visual. Punk hits the running knee and diving elbow. Punk to the kendo stick. Ryback no-sells the multiple kendo stick shots. Ryback gets the meathook clothesline. Shellshock time!

I KNEW I had to keep an eye on the ref. If you haven't guessed by now, that's Brad Maddox, who is also a pro wrestler by trade. Maddox steps in front of Ryback and low blows him. Punk with the weak rollup and Maddox fast counts three. Screwjob city again!

Maddox and Punk want to get out of the cell now, but the ref just happens to fiddle with the lock and drop the key. Ryback nukes Maddox like there's no tomorrow. The cell door's finally open. Heyman tries to drag Punk out of the cell, but Ryback stops that. Heyman runs away.

PUNK CLIMBS TO THE TOP OF THE CELL! YES! Ryback climbs up as well. Shellshocked on top of the cell! YES! Oh, how I wish this was part of the actual match. Ryback stands over Punk on top of the cell as the show ends.

I'd call it an average show overall. Fairly OK from beginning to end, but there was no huge OMG match to speak of -- unless you want to count the crooked ref screwjob finish on the WWE Title match. Sucks that Ziggler wasn't wrestling. Frankly, I wanted him on the card somewhere. But as long as Ziggler still has the briefcase, there's always the "will Ziggler cash the briefcase in and the ref ring the bell?" question looming over the show.

I will say that the World Title match exceeded my expectations. Granted, the beginning was just too slow for me, and you can't help that with a lengthy Big Show match. The last several minutes made up for it, and it ultimately got my vote for Match of the Night.

The WWE Title match was the one that generated the most interest from me and many others because of how the finish would be booked. Some people probably thought Ryback would get the win, but I kept trying to figure out how Punk would escape with the title. It was one of those instances where a Ryback loss could mean a screeching halt to his mega push, while a Punk loss would derail the champ's momentum. WWE has really hyped how long Punk has been champ, and it looks WWE wants Rock to be the guy to take him down. WWE also probably wanted to avoid Ryback being a transitional champ (not consistent with a guy getting a mega push), so even a short Ryback title reign was out of the question.

From what I read, multiple finishes were considered for Punk/Ryback. For the longest time, I thought Lesnar would make an appearance, but WWE understandably wants to save Lesnar's limited appearances and keep the "I quit WWE" storyline solid.

I think the screwy ref angle worked beautifully, and I'm happy with the finish. Once I saw Brad Maddox was the ref, I knew something was fishy. Usually, you'd think a guy like Scott Armstrong or Mike Chioda would work the title match, but for all intents and purposes, Maddox is considered a "rookie" ref. Brad also has the training to take major bumps like you saw after the match.

Ryback had to get screwed out of a possible title win. Punk should get more heel heat for all this, and that also was a major factor in having the champ retain. Ryback was still the monster I hoped he'd be booked as. They both went to the top of the freakin' cell, albeit after the match was over. WWE ended the show with Ryback standing over Punk on top of the cell. Fans soaked it all in. I'd say mission accomplished, and then some.

Ryback should be a huge star in WWE. The match itself was fairly straightforward for HIAC, so I can't say it was epic. But I felt it was booked properly given the circumstances. **1/2

Saturday, October 27, 2012

10/26/12 Smackdown

Kane vs. Cody Rhodes: *1/4

Miz vs. Yoshi Tatsu: 3/4*

Wade Barrett vs. Randy Orton: ***

Layla & Kaitlyn vs. Eve Torres & Aksana: *

Damien Sandow vs. Daniel Bryan: *1/2

Josh Mathews and JBL announcing from Providence, RI. Two days from Hell in a Cell!

Orton starts things off. I'm assuming he grew his hair out for the movie role. Promo on Alberto Del Rio. Orton vows to give ADR the biggest beatdown at HIAC. Del Rio comes out and says he's the new apex predator; Orton's just a "garden snake." Orton calls ADR spineless. Wade Barrett attacks Orton from behind, probably came through the crowd. Teddy Long books Barrett against Orton for later.

Daniel Bryan and Damien Sandow on commentary, naturally on opposite sides. DB and Damien praise their partners' in-ring abilities. Nice array of moves from Rhodes. DB says Sandow's the weak link on Rhodes Scholars and says Sandow doesn't have a manly beard. Nice stuff, goat face. Kane with a chokeslam for three. Fairly average stuff to me. Commentary was awesome.

Miz gets Yoshi Tatsu in a warmup match for HIAC. Poor Yoshi has been jobbing for a while now. Kicks and knees from Miz, aggressive ring style. Yoshi with a couple of moves, but otherwise all Miz.

More hyping of the WWE Title match this Sunday at HIAC. I'm curious on how WWE will treat this one. I'm all for Ryback's big push, but still hope for Punk to keep the gold.

The whole "who attacked Kaitlyn?" storyline started because Eve botched her spot in the divas battle royal a few months back. At least it did wonders for keeping Kaitlyn and Aksana somewhat relevant on the show. Basically, the story now is Eve sent text to Aksana to take Kaitlyn out at Night of Champions, so I guess Aksana wore the blonde wig. Booker doesn't know who the believe but tells Eve if the allegations are true, Eve's fired. Booker makes a triple threat match at HIAC between Eve, Kaitlyn, and Layla. Guess Eve retains again. Divas tag coming up.

Orton faces Barrett. Back-and-forth match given a lot of time. JBL continually says Orton shouldn't have taken this match 48 hours from the PPV. Several counters led to near falls, some of them signature moves or finishers. Del Rio with the interference as Orton set up for the RKO. Souvenir elbow got three. Big win for Barrett's momentum. ADR tries to take Orton out after the match. Goes for the armbreaker, countered. ADR gets out of the RKO and slithers away.

Time for the divas tag. JBL still says Teddy Long was in the blonde wig and is the worst blonde man he's ever seen. Nice to see Kaitlyn showing more aggression in the ring. Layla goes to kick Eve, but strikes Kaitlyn instead. Eve tossed to the outside, and Eve covers Kaitlyn for three. Wonder if that'll happen at HIAC as well. Oh, and Eve's kick has a name now: the Bombshell.

WWE's really pushing the "AJ Scandal" with Cena. Cena and Vickie have taken it to Twitter.

Kane tells DB if the goat face loses, the Big Red Monster will know "who the tag team champions really is." Kane and Cody on commentary as DB takes on Sandow. DB pushes Cody, Sandow gets to Daniel. Kane intimidates Sandow around ringside. Cody tosses DB into the ringpost. Sandow with Terminus and it's over. Poor goat face.

We end the show with a face-to-face segment between Sheamus and Big Show. Must be around a dozen security in the ring. Sorry, the security can't hold these two guys back. Brogue Kick to a security guard, but Show avoids it.

Basically, three questions to be answered: (1) will Big Show KO Sheamus with the WMD; (2) will Sheamus manage to nail his Brogue Kick on Big Show for a win; and (3) will Ziggler cash in MITB? All three should be answered on Sunday.

10/25/12 Superstars

Jimmy Uso & Jey Uso vs. Titus O'Neil & Darren Young: *3/4

Jinder Mahal vs. Tyson Kidd: **

Usos and Primetime Players start the show. At least I've learned to tell the Usos apart by their tribal tattoos. Usual heel tactics to keep Jey isolated. Jimmy with the hot tag and it's basically the beginning of the end for PTPs. Usos pick up the win with the top-rope splash.

New music for 3MB. Nice improvement. Hated that "one-man band" music, and Jinder's music was too generic. Jinder's growing his hair back out again and it looks good. Still getting a kick out of McIntyre's rockstar look. 3MB with the usual outside distractions to keep Jinder in control. Kidd brings an extra gear to his matches that keep me interested. Jinder with the Harley Race knee and Camel Clutch to end it.

Show ends with Punk and Sheamus lumberjack match from RAW. Mission accomplished to book Ryback extremely strong.

Friday, October 26, 2012

10/25/12 Impact (Championship Thursday)

Rob Van Dam vs. Zema Ion (X-Division Title): **

Samoa Joe vs. Robbie T (TV Title): 1/2*

Austin Aries vs. Mr. Anderson: **1/4

Tara vs. Miss Tessmacher (Knockouts Title): *

Jeff Hardy vs. Kurt Angle (World Title): ***3/4

It's Championship Thursday! Four titles are on the line tonight (X-Division, TV, Knockouts, and World Title).

Hulk tells Hardy straight up that he'll be giving him a tough first title defense. Still got Bully, Anderson, Storm, and Angle to pick from.Hardy says he's ready for any of them. He walks out of Hulk's office and walks by the four potential challengers. Hardy voiceover on his thoughts about the four guys.

Switch-up on announcing duties tonight. Borash and Todd Keneley will work the first hour, with Tenay and Taz coming in for hour #2.

TV Title match starts things off. RVD mixing in a little power game on the smaller Zema Ion, along with the usual martial arts and aerial stuff. I thought Keneley did a pretty good job on the play-by-play stuff, but Borash still takes a bit of the lead role otherwise (as he's the more experienced on-air TNA guy of the two). RVD retains with the five-star frog splash.

Matt Morgan and Joey Ryan hit the ring. Morgan with Carbon Footprint to RVD. Hulk may have created a monster Matt Morgan. Good. I want to see that lethal side.

Daniels and Kaz promo time. Kaz cries conspiracy, uses "troglodyte" (don't copy Chris Jericho!), and then lists excuses on why they lost the tag titles. Daniels and Kaz gripe about other former champs getting their title rematches, but none for them. They basically call out Chavo and Hernandez. Time to get signatures for a petition for a tag title shot. Enter Chavo and Hernandez, who grant the title shot.

Hulk with the final four challengers for Hardy's title. Anderson's the first one cut. Aries rubs it in his face and they brawl. Anderson gets the upper hand. Poor editing; they left in the "CUT!" from the director.

Devon with the Aces & Eights group. Devon's official title of the group is "Sergeant at Arms." He spoke with the "president" and those masks are to stay on at all times. They plan to take out someone. One of the big dudes throws a dart at a poster of the TNA roster to figure out who to assault tonight.

TV Title match next. Did anyone think Rob Terry would actually beat Samoa Joe here? Terry's been in the same role forever now, and it doesn't look like management will get any faith in him anytime soon. Make no mistake, Terry's got an impressive physique. Joe just slaps on the choke like four different times and it's over. At least it was cool when Terry fell back on Joe to break the choke, then Joe just sat up like a zombie Undertaker and slapped it on a final time. Avoids the DUD rating just for that.

Tessmacher vows to get her Knockouts Title back. I personally hope Tara has a good reign with the title. With a short-staffed division, just give it to your most experienced talent and let her run with it. Helps that Tara can also get the crowd to care at least a little.

Hulk cuts Bully Ray next so Bully can go deal with Devon. Leaves the obvious choice Hulk had to make all this time: Angle or Storm?

Anderson and Aries in an official match after the backstage confrontation. Anderson reaches into the trunks and pulls out brass knuckles in front of the ref? Yeah, that was smart. "Cheater" chants. Decent chemistry between Anderson and Aries. Nice countering. Aries pulls the ref down trying to get out of Anderson's rolling senton, then digs for the knucks in the ref's pocket. Anderson picks the knucks up, and ref takes them away again. Aries reaches into his own tights (for what seems like his own brass knucks) and clocks Anderson. But Anderson falls on Aries for a near fall?! Aries gets out and locks in the last Chancery for the win. Awkward last 60 seconds there.

Fast start to the Knockouts Title match. Need more physicality in more Knockouts matches. Jessie from Big Brother with multiple distractions on Tessmacher. Nice reffing, Taryn. Low bridge from Jessie takes Tessmacher to the arena floor. Leads to Widow's Peak for three. Sounds about right. Now give those two lovebirds a room. Brooke Hogan breaks up the makeout session. Next week is Open Fight Night and ODB challenges...Jessie! HA. That'll be amusing.

Joseph Park wants to deal with Aces & Eights. He wants Hogan to sign a hold harmless agreement. Hulk will think about it.

Bully Ray promo calling out Devon for an answer. A&E en masse walks down to the ring. Devon said everything has to do with Hulk Hogan, Dixie Carter, etc. Bully brings up why he turned on Devon in the first place two years ago. First, Sabin kicking out of the 3-D, then the locker room comment from Devon about "we're rich, screw the fans." Nice use of a back story to bring it all together. Bully wants to kick Devon's ass, one on one. Devon says not tonight, on his terms. Bully says next week's Open Fight Night, and Bully challenges Devon. Great segment.

Joey Ryan seeks X-Division gold in the near future, while Morgan vows more carnage.

Gut Check contestant of the month is Christian York. He's 35, been wrestling for 16 years. He was on the first TNA PPV in 2002. Hoping he has a good match next week.

Hogan makes the call: Angle (a.k.a. "Cyborg") faces Hardy for the title. But Hulk says he's got big plans for Storm as well.

Hardy now holds both his custom World Title and the actual World Title. Main event intros. Match is gonna  get a good amount of time. Nice mat wrestling to start, with Hardy actually getting the upper hand. High energy throughout. Crowd active and into it. Counter out of ankle lock. Angle Slam gets two. Multiple Twists of Fate and Swanton...TWO! Crowd standing. "This is awesome!" Angle spitting up blood. Angle Slam countered into Hardy stack rollup for three. Great stuff, fellas.

Aries attacks Hardy from behind, clocked him with the title. Aries says he wants his rematch at the Turning Point PPV. Aries vows it'll be the turning point for both of their careers: Hardy to the outhouse and Aries back to the penthouse. Nice. Hardy should retain there. Not burying Aries, just keeping Hardy on top of the mountain and happy so that he stays with the company. TNA obviously has faith in Hardy and trusts that he's really changed.

Quick cut to the backstage area. Remember A&E wanted to take someone out? They did. Angle's the victim tonight.

Good show tonight. Main event lived up to my expectations and then some.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

10/24/12 NXT

Brodus Clay vs. Camacho: 3/4*

Trent Barreta vs. Kassius Ohno: **1/2

Paige & Audrey Marie vs. Layla & Alicia Fox: 3/4*

Bronson vs. Lincoln Brodrick: N/A (squash)

Seth Rollins vs. Heath Slater: **3/4

New play-by-play guy (at least to my knowledge). Tony Luftman calls the action alongside Regal. Tony's not bad, but not super awesome yet. I see potential in him.

Heath Slater shows up and wants commissioner Dusty Rhodes to put him in a match against Rollins for the NXT title. Vickie with the vintage interruption to endorse Slater. Dusty says if Slater can beat Rollins tonight, he'll get a title match in the future.

Ring announcer is really enthusiastic tonight.

Brodus Clay and Funkadactyls invade NXT. Haven't seen Camacho on TV in a while because Hunico is sidelined with a torn ACL (needed surgery). OK match, I guess, but so damn slow. Couple of sloppy moments. I can do without Brodus jiggling like that. Headbutt, exploder suplex, and splash gets three.

Where's Trent? Facing Kassius Ohno. Trent with the early momentum as expected. Exciting stuff from TB to pump the crowd up. Sounded like the kids were mostly behind Barreta. Nice match here. Richie Steamboat (in a suit) marches to the ring and throws a towel in Ohno's face. Ref saw it all and didn't care. Barreta with that Gobstopper knee for three.

Layla and Alicia team up for a divas tag against Paige and Audrey Marie. Yup, two former divas champs in another match for NXT. Hey, whatever gets them screen time, I guess. Audrey got her initiation for sure, yet kept kicking out. Even Paige got hammered for a while. Paige looks like she's gonna get the job done with that DDT of hers, but Audrey tags herself in. Audrey with the lax cover, which Layla reverses for three. Guess we're supposed to care about rookie mistakes? Paige is livid. Maybe a storyline will develop here.

Bronson with his first match on NXT, big, bald, heavily bearded guy coming out in a black hoodie and singlet. Brodrick has an impressive bodybuilder physique. Basically mixing in MMA stuff. Nice submission finisher, which I'll describe as a modified figure four with heelhook. Looks very painful. Two thumbs down for his signature pose, kinda like Batista to a degree. I like the submissions stuff. Especially from a big guy, it just looks doubly agonizing.

Antonio Cesaro promo. He wants people to rise for the national anthem and gets a bunch of people to stand. Of course, it's gonna be the Switzerland national anthem. Tyson Kidd interrupts the proceedings. Gotta love the man-purse. TK with the universal language hand slap. I'd have to believe Tyson will eventually get a U.S. Title shot. Yup, a championship currently being fought over by two guys not billed from the U.S. International awesomeness!

I guess Vickie is on the Heath Slater bandwagon for NXT purposes. Jim Ross and Regal call the main event match. I still think that NXT Title looks ugly. Good match between Rollins and Slater. Pretty exciting last few minutes with Rollins on the offensive. Slater hits that cutter-like finisher, but only two. Rollins scores a couple big moves for the win. So much for that title shot. Vickie not pleased as the show ends.

10/24/12 Main Event

Ryback vs. Dolph Ziggler: *

Alberto Del Rio vs. Sin Cara: *1/2

Miz and Cole hype Ziggler/Ryback scheduled for later in the show. The usual awesome video packages air, plus some backstage promos. Ryback's promo is short and to the point. Big Hungry is starving. Ziggler has no comment. Yeah, he looks worried.

Crowd is really behind Ryback. As of this post, the guy has over 160,000 Twitter followers. Ziggler tried to run but Ryback caught him. Ryback virtually no-sold when he ran his shoulder into the post. Ziggler offense no effect. Ryback with a dominating win.

Since Cena isn't actually wrestling at Hell in a Cell, he'll be facing the WWE Universe in the preshow. Guess he'll be addressing the "AJ Scandal" that has its own Twitter hashtag deal.

Miz and Cole talk with Paul Heyman regarding Punk/Ryback at Hell in a Cell. Heyman praises Ryback's accomplishments, but believes Punk will have the intelligence advantage inside the cell.

Sin Cara and Alberto Del Rio close the show. Hey, Sin Cara threw some punches in this match instead of solely doing the spotfest lucha stuff! ADR gets the knees up on the senton and slaps on the cross armbreaker for the submission win.

Not as good of a show this week regarding match quality. HIAC is in a few days anyway. Still thinking it's possible that Lesnar appears to help Punk retain -- or they can go a no-contest route after both guys escape the cell somehow.

ADR says he doesn't need to do the "millions of dollars" chant. Enter Primetime Players. ADR says he isn't the enemy, Sin Cara is. The three beat down Sin Cara. There's no Mysterio tonight, which can also help explain stuff if Sin Cara does turn heel for his eventual storyline with Mysterio (I say keep Rey as the face in all this because he moves so much merchandise). Orton comes down for the save. RKOs to Titus and D-Young.

Next week on Main Event is the Halloween edition. Featured match is Orton, Mysterio, and Sin Cara in a six-man tag against ADR, Titus, and D-Young.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

10/22/12 RAW

Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow vs. Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara: **1/4

Kofi Kingston vs. Michael McGillicutty: 1/2*

Antonio Cesaro vs. Justin Gabriel: *1/2

Ryback vs. Miz: N/A (squash)

Dolph Ziggler vs. Daniel Bryan: **3/4

Big Show vs. Kane: 1/2*

Sheamus vs. CM Punk: **3/4

Cole and Ross on commentary. They mention AJ has been called to an "emergency" meeting at WWE HQ.

We start the show with the finals to determine the #1 contenders for the tag titles. Match had been delayed one week because Mysterio had a bad virus. Team Hell No watching the match backstage. Gotta respect the lucha stuff Sin Cara brings to the ring. And yes, Sin Cara is on Twitter now, tweeting in English and Spanish. Wonder if he actually knows how to speak English by now so that he can try to cut some promos. Crowd perked up when Rey got the hot tag. Nice job by Sandow to stop the ref's count. Rhodes takes advantage and nails Rey with Cross Rhodes. Solid match overall. Thought Mysterio and Cara would get a tag title run first, but this could be a good enough reason for Cara to turn heel down the road and start a storyline with Rey. I'd say Rhodes Scholars now may indeed get that tag title run.

A disgruntled Miz still on commentary as Kofi competes against McGillicutty. So MM gets a RAW match instead of being totally relegated to NXT and Superstars. Real short match; Kofi hits Trouble in Paradise for the win.

Cena promo time. He puts over Ryback as the biggest threat to Punk's title. Punk comes out for his usual heel promo. Cena then says he's medically cleared and would love to kick Punk's ass now. Punk teases getting it on with Cena, while Heyman pleads for Punk to reconsider. Punk backs off.

Cesaro and Gabriel in basically a rematch from last week. Cesaro's right hand heavily taped, reason is torn tendons. Cesaro is relentless, but Gabriel nails the 450 for the win. Series now tied, 1-1. Maybe a rubber match for the title at Hell in a Cell?

Vince and AJ show up to the arena in a limo. AJ basically says she's resigning as RAW GM. Then the sob story of how she grew up 15 minutes from this arena and went from sleeping in cars to becoming a "boss" on WWE TV. She thanks Vince for the opportunity. And yes, I certainly dig crazy chicks. Heyman with the sly heel promo, then nominates himself for new RAW GM. Vince says no. Vince then says Vickie Guerrero is the "managing supervisor" of Monday Night RAW. What the hell does that mean, and how is it any different from a GM role if there's no GM? Gotta love how the fans are all over Vickie. Vickie puts Punk in a match against Sheamus, dubbed the biggest Lumberjack match in RAW's history. Vickie then belittles AJ, which causes AJ to attack Vickie. Fans love it. AJ's needed more as an in-ring competitor now, anyway. Really had to be done.

Ryback takes on Miz. Basically another squash win for Big Hungry.

Eve being the gossip queen about AJ's resignation. Nice to toss Ryder and Primo in the whole fraternizing thing. Kaitlyn confronts Eve about the email on her iPad. Eve with the first shot and all hell breaks loose. Layla breaks it up. Eve decks Layla, and more chaos. Eve will probably complain to Booker or blame Teddy Long, perhaps both.

Daniel Bryan and Ziggler? Hell yes. No Vickie by Dolph's side this time. Nice figure-four from DB to get the "Woooo" going in the crowd. DB suplexed to the outside and he holds his left knee. Kane comes out to his pyros and music. Big KO kick from DB musta really stung. Cheerleader Kane gets the "YES" chants going, which DB doesn't like. Ziggler recovers and hits the Zigzag for three. Real good, woulda preferred a cleaner finish without Kane. But hey, it is what it is. All about the dysfunction stuff anyway.

Striker sent out to host this game show called the "Newlytag Game" (spoof of the Newlywed Game). And hey, DB and Kane are contestants! They will be up against...Rhodes and Sandow. Kane wins again by saying he loves rainbows, long walks on the beach, and puppies (HELL NO!). Rhodes and Sandow refuse to play, so DB and Kane winby forfeit. Striker bails and basically wants DB and Kane to lose on Sunday for the way the champs have treated him. He walks right into Big Show. Oops.

And just like that, we got Kane and Show for their match. Another slow match, as expected. DB now plays cheerleader. Team Rhodes Scholars slowly walk down the ring. Kane and DB are distracted. Show KOs Kane and gets the win. Just couldn't get into the match, sorry. Rhodes Scholars attack DB like a pack of wolves. Cross Rhodes to DB in the ring. Momentum for Rhodes Scholars heading into Sunday.

Santino tells AJ she did a good job as GM. Cena the flirtatious one goes to AJ. AJ then says the so-called "affair" allegations was with Cena. Cena says it was just a business dinner. AJ suspects Vickie had something to do with this. Hug it out! Cena says he'll do something about it.

Cena tells Vince what happened. Vince said there was "incriminating evidence," AJ was on probation, and it was basically a matter of time. "It is what it is." Nice to know Vince and the Board nominated a replacement for the storyline who has a cougar gimmick and multiple on-screen "marriages" or "relationships." But hey, that's continuity, and we're supposed to ignore that, right?

Del Rio faces Ryder in a tune-up for Sunday. Poor Zack is back on jobbing duty most of the time. At least his YouTube show is a big hit. No Broski Boot today. Cross armbreaker for the submission win. Del Rio gets Orton on Sunday.

Cena now confronts Vickie. Vickie basically admits (without explicitly saying it) that it was her who told the Board about the incriminating evidence. Vickie said Cena was the one who asked AJ out and started it all; thus, he's to blame for costing AJ her GM job.

Ziggler promo on Cena to rub salt in the wound. Hey, could be a good time for a Cena/Ziggler feud. If it gets Ziggler that one huge storyline he needs to cement main event status, this could be the way to go.

Before the Lumberjack match, Heyman tries to assure Punk that next Monday, Punk will still be the champ.

Lumberjack match got a bunch of time. Sheamus got tossed out of the ring a few times, and the heels attacked as usual. Show just stood by the announce table throughout. Several near falls here, numerous counters. Sheamus with a comeback late in the match. Cesaro and Jinder ate Brogue Kicks. Show then pops up on the apron to chokeslam Sheamus. Punk gets three. Match was pretty good. No "lumberjack brawling on the outside" spot this time.

Ryback immediately comes out. Punk can't go anywhere because the face lumberjacks keep tossing him back in. Punk decimated with impressive power moves. Nice strong Ryback booking there. No running away in Hell in a Cell.

Wrestling sites have offered the idea that Brock Lesnar should interfere to help Punk retain the title. Frankly, I think it's the best option if Ryback doesn't win, and I too would like Punk to hold onto the title until next year's Royal Rumble (so he can face Rock). Lesnar obviously has the Heyman ties, so that'll be easy to explain. It also keeps Ryback booked relatively strong without killing too much momentum. The only thing is that WWE probably doesn't want to burn another Lesnar appearance (already a limited number under contract) so that they can properly build the WM 29 match he's supposed to have. Honestly, just have Lesnar appear. I think he's well worth the money WWE spent to get him.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

10/19/12 Smackdown

Randy Orton vs. Miz: **1/4

Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow vs. Tyson Kidd & Justin Gabriel: *1/2

Daniel Bryan & Kane vs. Dolph Ziggler & Big Show: **1/4

Antonio Cesaro vs. Ted DiBiase: *

Heath Slater vs. Brodus Clay: 1/2*

Layla vs. Natalya: 1/4*

Sheamus vs. Wade Barrett (Lumberjack): **

Josh Mathews and JBL on commentary.

Miz TV starts things off. He's still saying Kofi's title win was a fluke. Stitches obviously still in Miz's head. He's invoking his rematch clause at Hell in a Cell, so add that one to the card. And Team Hell No are the guests tonight! Daniel Bryan really sporting a hell of a goat face. Miz basically saying it'll be DB's fault that they lose the tag titles at HIAC. DB's the world's toughest vegan! HA. More vintage Team Hell No bickering. DB brings up the 45-second win on Big Show, so Show arrives to the party. Ziggler comes down and must get in on the act because he's the MITB holder. Miz really never had control of his show. Booker puts a halt to everything. Two big matches. Team Hell No against Show and Ziggler.

But first, Miz faces Orton. Oops. Alberto and Ricardo watching from a luxury skybox, saying he's the new apex predator in WWE. Good match with Orton taking it via RKO.

Teddy suggests Sheamus face Barrett in a Lumberjack match. Eve lurks in the background, so I guess she's stealing the idea if Booker likes it.and blaming Teddy if Booker hates it. Sure enough, the former occurs.

Team Rhodes Scholars continues to get booked strong, picking up a win over Gabriel and Kidd. Nice finish with the blind tag and the disaster kick to Kidd's face. Unfortunate that it was real short.

Next on the card is Team Hell No vs. Ziggler/Show. Show's offense just hurts. Spear to Kane, gorilla press toss DB to the outside. Decent isolating of DB. Finally, DB actually voluntarily makes a tag to Kane. DB then tags himself back in later. Kane saves DB from Show. NO lock to Ziggler and it's over. Another day in the lives of Team Hell No.

Cesaro outside Sun Studio for a taped promo, then faces DiBiase in singles action. Nice thing about that Euro uppercut is how it can be hit from just about anywhere. Neutralizer wins it.

I'm happy Ryback's getting his push to face Punk in the cell. I just wish Punk could keep the title while Ryback gets a big win. Can't really do that here, though. Would be interesting if Ryback does get the belt. Punk could always gain it back, but it's just cool to have him tell people how many consecutive days he's been champ.

3MB is in the house. McIntyre really can scream into that mic. Slater faces Brodus Clay tonight. Jinder with the distraction, and Slater gets the win. Funkdactyls must be sad pandas right now.

Eve again at ringside for Layla's match against Natalya. Josh continues to inquire about the blonde wig purportedly found in Eve's bag. Eve with the professional demeanor while just going with the jealousy spiel. Layla gets the win with a roundhouse kick. There was a match going on? Poor Natalya.

Teddy has Eve's iPad and shows some info to Kaitlyn. Teddy says Kaitlyn can do whatever she wants with that info. Kaitlyn takes a couple photos. Could be Eve with a blonde wig on or just some incriminating notes.

Lumberjack match time. Hey, it's a great way to get otherwise-unused superstars on the show. You can always expect a hard-hitting affair between Barrett and Sheamus. 3MB actually pulled Wade out of the ring, so Sheamus took them out. Man, these are some poor lumberjacks. Not doing their job. Throw 'em back in! The inevitable brawl between lumberjacks commences. Team Hell No comes down and chases Team Rhodes Scholars out of the arena. Sheamus nails his Brogue Kick on Barrett in all the chaos and gets three.

Zigzag from Ziggler. He tries to cash in MITB but Show KOs him. Message sent to Sheamus.

10/18/12 Superstars

Tensai vs. Michael McGillicutty: **1/2

Kaitlyn vs. Beth Phoenix: *1/4

Tensai and McGillicutty face off to start the show. Is MM a face or a heel these days? To me, just another guy on the roster. Just use "Joe Hennig" already; he already uses a few moves his late father utilized. MM should do just fine, just needs to work with the right people and get a good feud going. His stuff with Tyson Kidd was great. Tensai with the win via running senton splash.

We see a replay of Punk, Heyman, and Vince segment on RAW.

Kaitlyn takes on Beth Phoenix in a battle of strength. Kaitlyn still wearing the tape on the left boot. Match wasn't bad, but they botched the finish. Still, Kaitlyn's improved a lot since her NXT days. She's also showing me a bunch of moves that require at least some agility and quickness. I personally think a submission finisher would be great for her. Heck, even a spear would be fine with me.

Not much wrestling on this show. Superstars ended with the WWE Title contract signing from RAW. Cena endorses Ryback (since Cena probably won't be ready for HIAC). Ryback signs the contract and takes out Punk to a good pop. "Feed me more" has gotten super over with the crowd.

Friday, October 19, 2012

10/18/12 Impact

Samoa Joe vs. Robbie E (TV Title): *

ODB vs. Tara: 1/2*

Hernandez & Chavo Guerrero vs. Kid Kash & Gunner: *1/2

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

Devon vs. Sting: *3/4

Aces and Eights start the show by coming through the crowd. Six guys. Devon comes out separately. "You sold out" chants. He says A&E was there for him from day one and puts the fans down. Devon did this because he could. And now he gets to testify. Devon's basically not gonna be the leader, but will be a visible mouthpiece for the group. Nice continuity referencing Bully Ray putting Devon's son through a table. Sting leads a bunch of TNA guys and we have a brawl. A&E bails. Sting wants Devon in the ring tonight.

Jeff Hardy gets a celebration party. Aries may bring some cookies! Woohoo!

Hogan says Hardy will put his World Title on the line next week for Championship Thursday. Meanwhile, he and Joseph Park have to talk in private. Damn this attorney-client privilege stuff....

Robbie E is back in the TV title picture, but it's basically another win for Samoa Joe. Both Robbies got choked out. Fun.

Jessie and Tara to the ring. Get those two a room. No Eric Young again by ODB's side. Again, not many healthy Knockouts on the roster right now. ODB gives Jessie a real closeup. Talking on the cell phone during a match? Didn't work for me here. ODB spits the liquid courage in Jessie's face. TKO wins it for ODB as Tessmacher approves. Tessmacher and Tara in a rematch next week for the title.

Kash and Gunner team up again to face the new tag champs, Hernandez and Chavo. Chavo still with the tape on the shoulder. Chavo with a new weapon, I guess. It's a frog splash crossbody move for three. Not bad here.

Video package highlights of the world title match at Bound for Glory. Leads into the Hardy celebration. Hardy has his customized world title again. Let the confetti fly! Lots of ladies in the front row really love Jeff. Aries comes down with balloons and cookies. The fans want some cookies as well. Aries spits on Hardy's title. Hardy tries for a Twist of Fate and Aries bails.

It's Angle, Styles, and Daniels. Winner advances to be one of the final four guys Hogan picks to face Jeff Hardy for the world title next week. Storm, Anderson, and Bully already the other three. Since when does Anderson just get to be thrown in without a match? The guy's been off TV more than on the screen, and even then, it's really been meaningless matches for the most part.

Great triple threat, as one would expect. Taz praises King Mo for his work in the Storm/Roode street fight, but the guy DIDN'T DO ANYTHING. Nice Asai moonsault from AJ onto Daniels, but he looked like he tweaked his left knee there. Angle knocks Daniels into AJ and hits the Angle Slam for the three. Angle wants to shake AJ's hand, but rejected. Ouch. Tension on this tag team.

Hogan talks with Joey Ryan and Matt Morgan. Hulk likes Joey's work and says he's been in Morgan's corner since day one. Still, creative thinks Morgan doesn't have all the tools (no charisma and might drop the ball). Morgan out to show what he's really made of.

Storm promo again. He has a top 10 list, which is really kick Bobby Roode's ass, drink beer, and win back the world title. Storm vows to get that title next week. Roode still comes out and says he'll always be the better man of the group. Last Call superkick ends that one. is the feud finally over?

Footage shown of last Saturday night, when Sting got formally inducted into the TNA Hall of Fame. Always great to be the first in this circumstance.

Devon and Sting in the main event. Some fans actually chanted for Devon, while most chanted for Sting. Formulaic match. Sting on the comeback with Stinger Splash, Scorpion Death Drop, and Scorpion Death Lock. A&E storms the ring and the match is thrown out. TNA roster comes down to help, and we have a brawl much like at the start of the show. Bully comes down wielding the black baseball bat, and A&E bails. Not necessarily the way I'd want to book A&E as their first "official" night with full access. Need more domination from that group. More hit-and-runs, if need be.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

10/17/12 NXT

Jinder Mahal vs. Alex Riley: *

Trent Barreta vs. Jake Carter: **1/2

Damien Sandow vs. Brandon Traven: *1/4

Kassius Ohno, Conor O'Brian, & Kenneth Cameron vs. Richie Steamboat, Jimmy Uso, & Jey Uso: **1/4

Yup, Alex Riley's relegated to NXT again. He faces Jinder here, and this was probably taped before the 3MB stable formed. Not bad here, a few counters in the match. A-Ry scores a win with a rollup, and Jinder with the post-match beatdown. Camel Clutch on A-Ry.

Trent Barreta and Jake Carter had a backstage rift last week, so they go at it this week. Not sure what the whole deal is with the "Where's Trent?" stuff. Carter's supposed to be some heartthrob gimmick, I guess? Part of his entrance theme reminds me of Seinfeld. "Carter Time" doesn't have the same impact as "Vader Time," sorry. But anyway, a nice competitive match here. Not sure why Carter's shocked when Trent kicked out of an overhead belly-to-belly. Flying knee from Barreta wins it.

Sandow comes out to lecture the masses before his match. Harley Race trained Traven, which is damn cool, but it won't help here. Pretty much a methodical beatdown here. Traven got some short offense in, but Sandow hits his signature moves and gets the win with Terminus.

Jim Ross joins Saxton and Regal for the six-man tag main event. Ascension has such an ultra-cool ring entrance. Fast start as Usos do their war dance and Steamboat storms the ring for the fast start. Typical six-man tag match here. Good tag wrestling from the heels to isolate one of the Usos. Match got considerable time, but again, a bunch of basic heel offense bored me. Ohno can't stop the eventual hot tag to Steamboat, and Richie tees off like mad. Wish the crowd was larger for that. Usos take Ascension out, but Steamboat runs right into Ohno's elbow. That KO shot gets three.

10/17/12 Main Event

Kofi Kingston vs. Miz (IC Title): ***1/2

Dolph Ziggler vs. Zack Ryder: *1/2

JBL and Cole on Main Event tonight because Miz has a title match. I can't argue there. JBL is awesome, and he actually makes Cole look pretty good. Footage replayed of Miz getting nuked with Trouble in Paradise on RAW. No concussion, but six stitches.

Video package on Kofi Kingston's life. He even tried out for the original WWE Tough Enough series back in the day. Kofi promo after that, saying the kick on RAW was a message and he's gonna beat Miz tonight for the title.

Miz interrupts JBL for his own promo. Fresh stitches above his right eye. Nice video package of Miz even from the Tough Enough days. Superstars call him annoying, and at least it's a good thing for a heel promo.

We go right into the IC Title match. Lilian with the main event intros. Kofi with the upper hand early to excite the crowd. The great thing about Main Event is how long each of these matches has gone. There may only be one or two matches per show, and the star power is fitting for the show's name. Kofi with so many agile moves. Great counters from both guys. Miz wants to bail with his title and Kofi prevents that. Miz tries to cheat and that fails. Kofi hits Trouble in Paradise for three. Awesome match.

Ziggler and Ryder in the last match of the show. I absolutely love the camera angle used for the Broski Boot. Makes it look so much more painful. Rough Ryder countered, Zack hits the turnbuckle, and Ziggler hits Zigzag for three. Fairly standard match.

Vickie reminds everyone that Ziggler could cash in MITB at Hell in a Cell. Dolph issues an open challenge for next week's Main Event. Ryback accepts, and Dolph has the "aw crap" look. Gotta admit, Ryback's over with the crowd big time. Should be fun, and probably should be Ryback's longest match in this current mega push.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

10/15/12 RAW

Big Show vs. Daniel Bryan: *

Alberto Del Rio vs. Brodus Clay: 1/2*

Titus O'Neil & Darren Young vs. Zack Ryder & Santino Marella: 1/2*

Ryback vs. Dolph Ziggler & David Otunga: N/A (squash)

Antonio Cesaro vs. Justin Gabriel: *1/2

Kane vs. Matt Striker: N/A

Sheamus vs. Wade Barrett: **1/2

Eve Torres vs. Layla (Divas Title): 1/2*

Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow vs. Primo & Epico: *1/4

Kofi Kingston vs. Miz: *

Cole and Ross announce RAW in Nashville. They mention Punk's tweet where he made his decision and will reveal it on the show.

Show promo on how Sheamus should fear his Brogue Kick. Crowd chants "45 seconds." Show wants Daniel Bryan in a match to erase all that. DB says NO, everyone in the back says YES. Yup. We have goat face masks now. Wow. Show's spear is lethal. DB with kicks but Show catches DB in a chokeslam coming off the top. Show gets three and keeps getting booked strong. Kane comes out to make sure Show doesn't deck Daniel with the WMD.

Paul Heyman introduces Punk. Punk's got the devilish look for the HIAC poster. Punk says he's an angel and names his two choices the devils. Punk says he has his choice underneath the easel. Punk then says he'll take more time to think about it. Nope, says Vince McMahon. Vince says Punk blew it and now he'll be making the decision later.

Moving video package on Layla, whose mom battled breast cancer three times before succumbing.

Alberto Del Rio and Brodus square off. No on-camera intros. One thing I like about ADR is how his offense sets up that cross armbreaker move. Not everyone does that, and it's real effective stuff. Short match as Brodus misses a corner splash and ADR locks on the cross armbreaker for three. Orton and Del Rio official for HIAC; this sends a message to the Viper.

Punk wants Heyman to tell Vince that the champ wants the chairman in a match tonight for the right to name Punk's HIAC opponent.

More tag team action with Team CoBro against Primetime Players. Again, Primetime Players without the tag title shot that they may have gotten had AW not been fired. Another real short match here. Broski Boot to Titus. Darren takes out Santino, Ryder takes out D-Young, and Titus hits his finisher for the win.

Slater, McIntyre, and Jinder storm the ring. I about fell out of my chair seeing McIntyre. The hair's free-flowing now, with a bandanna. Matching jackets, glasses, and jeans for all three. Official name is the 3MB.

Ziggler promo all pissed that he had to earn his MITB title shot and Ryback may just get a title shot thanks to some monster push. Ziggler wants to face Punk (hey, I'm all for it) and then win the World Title with his MITB briefcase to become dual champ in one night. Sounds cool to me, but of course, that won't happen. Otunga comes out he wants the title shot. Don't make me laugh, Harvard law grad. Delusional? AJ's here, too. Handicap match! Ryback vs. Otunga and Ziggler.

"Feed me more!" echoes throughout the arena. Big lariat to Ziggler, and from there, Otunga's screwed. To protect Ziggler, Otunga basically does the jobbing tonight.

Punk's pitch (delivered via Paul Heyman) didn't work. And Matt Striker said "crazy" around AJ, so the teacher faces Kane. Oops.

Cesaro faces Gabriel in a battle of international stars. Typical taped heel promo from Cesaro about how the U.S. needs him. Does Gabriel really want to do that 120,000-foot skydive Felix Baumgartner did yesterday? That skydive was SICK. Effective impactful moveset from Cesaro. Gabriel does that AJ Styles-moonsault into reverse DDT spot. Not the cleanest-hit 450 splash. Finally saw on replay that Cesaro did indeed get the shoulder up a bit into Gabriel's midsection. Cesaro also got his foot on the ropes. Springboard right into the Euro uppercut, then Neutralizer for three.

Striker tries to get out of facing Kane. Kane wants to hug it out. And then a chokeslam for three. Nice interview by Kane. Even JR with the Tebowing reference. Next!

Miz TV with guest Kofi Kingston. Miz says Kofi will always be the "B" player. Kofi wants Miz later tonight and Miz accepts. Kofi fires the first shot.

Sheamus and Barrett in another hard-hitting affair. Show comes out with a chair. Show sits on the ramp for now. Watch that back kick from Barrett. Sheamus with a punishing comeback. Nice use of counters, especially on Barrett's old finisher (Wasteland). Cloverleaf on Barrett and Show storms down the ramp. Show with the low bridge and ref calls for the DQ. Pretty good match here, really. Brogue Kick to Barrett, then Sheamus knocks Show out of the ring.

Cena doesn't explicitly tell Vince he's medically cleared, just that it's Vince's decision.

Divas Title on the line; Layla finally gets her rematch. Eve with a bunch of submission holds and rest holds. Layla's offense is still too basic here. Kicks, springboard crossbody, seen that. Controversial finish again; Cole and Ross say the ref blew the call (and he did). So does this mean there will be yet another match between the two? I mean, the divas roster is pretty damn depleted right now anyway. Kinda sucks they don't use people like Natalya more.

More NO and YES from Kane and DB. Guess Kane faces Show next week.

Ryback tells Vince to feed him Punk. Big Hungry's starving.

3MB is invading Nashville to sing, with Slater and Jinder leading the charge. They get kicked out before they can start. Ha.

Primo and Epico face Team Rhodes Scholars. Primo isolated for most of the match. That whole "Three Amigos" stuff now shown in side suplex form by Epico. Sandow's straitjacket neckbreaker gets a name: Terminus (Latin for "end"). Cool name.

(NOTE: The tag title tournament finals was postponed to next week because Mysterio had the flu and stomach virus. Dave Meltzer reports it's a bad virus, so we'll see if Mysterio can go next week.)

Back from break with Miz and Kofi in singles action. Remember, they face each other for the IC Title on Main Event on Wednesday. Good counters on finishers, then Kofi just nails Miz right in the face (no time to cover up) with Trouble in Paradise. Doc tended to Miz right after the match. Could be a legit broken nose and concussion. Miz should ultimately be fine. Initially, I'm concerned if that means he retains on Wednesday's title match -- if there's even one at all.

Vince closes the show. He has a black folder in hand with the WWE Title match contract. Punk introduced first, then Ryback and Cena. No arm brace thing for Cena tonight. Punk immediately signs the contract first and is tired of hearing Vince talk. Before Vince can say who he picked, Cena says Punk needs to get his ass kicked, and Ryback's basically the man for the job. Ryback signs the contract and Shellshocks Punk. Crowd firmly behind Ryback.

Not a great show for wrestling. Seems like things were very rushed, a bunch of real short matches. Main point of RAW was to name Punk's opponent for Hell in a Cell. So now we know that Cena wasn't gonna be medically cleared in time for Hell in a Cell. I'm now wondering if Cena could still end up being a special guest ref. We'll see what happens next week.

Monday, October 15, 2012

10/14/12 Bound for Glory

Rob Van Dam vs. Zema Ion (X-Division Title): **1/4

Samoa Joe vs. Magnus (TV Title): ***1/4

James Storm vs. Bobby Roode (Street Fight): ****

Joey Ryan vs. Al Snow: **

Hernandez & Chavo Guerrero vs. Christopher Daniels & Kazarian vs. AJ Styles & Kurt Angle (Tag Team Titles): ***3/4

Tara vs. Miss Tessmacher (Knockouts Title): *1/4

Aces & Eights vs. Sting & Bully Ray (No DQ): **

Jeff Hardy vs. Austin Aries (World Title): ****1/4

It's TNA's biggest PPV of the year, live from Phoenix! Tenay and Taz are seated at ringside. TNA's got the elevated ramp going again, instead of a true entrance ramp.

Appropriate to start with the X-Division Title. RVD faces Zema Ion. Crowd is red hot for RVD. Ion mocks RVD at the start, not a smart move. Nice counters by both guys here. RVD sells so well and isn't afraid to take legit shots to the face or head. RVD hit the five-star frog splash for the win. Just seemed a bit rushed here. Kinda wish they had a bit more time to book Zema a tiny bit stronger (as in make it appear Zema would truly retain with a finishing move). But hey, new champ. Title change probably also done to make RVD happy and give him incentive to stick around longer.

TV Title match next between Joe and Magnus. Former tag champ partners square off. Good mat wrestling to start. Pretty clear they developed quite the chemistry when working together. Crowd solid on this one. Nice STF and Rings of Saturn from Joe. Magnus goes for the figure four, but Joe catches him in the rear naked choke for the tapout. Awesome.

Time for the Storm/Roode street fight. Feud's lasted about a year. King Mo is the special outside enforcer and barely gets a pop. Hell, why do they even need a real ref? Just have King Mo wear the earpiece. Heck, he really just needs to count the fall or ask for the tapout anyway. Storm and Roode start in the ring for a bit, then it really spills to the outside. Storm into the steel post and blades. Storm puts the trash can on Roode's groin and smacks the can with the kendo stick. Nutshot! Hangman's DDT to Roode on the entrance ramp as Storm's face is a crimson mass. Tons of trash can lids and even a fan's crutch on the ramp. Spear from announce table and cracks the adjacent wooden table. Announce table has a glass top, by the way. They get back in the ring eventually, and Storm gets a comeback in. Last Call hits, but just two! No cheap win for Roode tonight. YES TACKS! Roode tossed into the tacks! Storm with elbow on Roode on the tacks! TWO! Tacks sticking out of Roode everywhere. Nutshot to Storm, hope there weren't any tacks on the forearm. Six pack of beer comes in. Nutshot to Roode. Storm takes the beer bottle and smashes it over Roode. Crowd wants one more. Storm picks Roode up and Last Calls him onto the tacks for three. Nice way to end this one. But why the hell was King Mo even needed? Just for PPV buys, I guess? He just stood around all that time.

Next up is Joey Ryan and Al Snow. Joey wins, he gets a roster spot. I wish Al Snow really brought his mannequin head to the ring. Al with the mind games at the start, showing his experience over Joey. Al shows he's still got it. Al found Head underneath the ring! Joey pushes Al into the ref. Aw, a kiss for Head by Joey. Matt Morgan through the crowd and decks Al with the Carbon Footprint. Al's out cold, and Joey gets three and a contract. Morgan and Joey shake hands, so there's a nice partnership there.

Morgan probably wanted to go to TNA but that whole WWE/TNA lawsuit thing really threw a wrench in that. So I guess it's a heel return for Morgan in TNA.

Triple threat tag title match next. Only two guys in the ring at the same time, other teams can tag in if they can. First pin or submission wins. Chavo's right shoulder has tape on it. Great sequence between Angle and Kaz/Daniels. Now that's wrestling. All hell broke loose from there. Sick hurricanrana from Kaz on Hernandez. Thought he busted his shoulder badly there. AJ with the springboard senton onto three guys after that. Spotfest! TKO (Kaz) and BME (Daniels) only TWO on AJ! Blind tag gets Hernandez in. Border Toss and Frog Splash, and we got new tag champs. Finally. Awesome match. Damn awesome.

Knockouts Title now. I like the mentor-student storylines because Tessmacher will get more comfortable working matches. Tessmacher barely gets a pop coming out; Tara got more of a reaction overall. Local radio personality got to ring the bell, woohoo. Tara with heel tactics to gain the upper hand. Top-rope leap into hurricanrana by Tessmacher. Not easy for the ladies to do on each other with all the force coming down on the shoulders. Tessmacher misses the elbow and Tara hits the Widow's Peak for three. Basically the teacher taking advantage of a rookie mistake. Nothing too special, but it was a passable match.

Tara teases the "Hollywood boyfriend" stuff on social media, how he's a big name. Oh, good grief. It's Jessie Godderz from Big Brother. All-natural pro bodybuilder. Well, at least he has the look to be a star. Now get those two a room.

Highlights played from the previous night's Hall of Fame Ceremony, where Sting became the first inductee. Lex Luger even made a cameo, which was awesome.

I about fell out of my chair seeing Bully Ray in face paint. Kinda looks like Road Warrior face paint material. Two guys bring a beaten down Joseph Park through the crowd and cuff him to the guardrail. No DQ, so all hell breaks loose. Not meant to be a wrestling match. The Spanish table is nuked some more. A&E gets the upper hand when Sting misses the Stinger Splash and eats the guardrail. Bully gets the hot tag and goes to town. Third A&E member low blows Bully and spits at Park. Park breaks free from the cuffs and nukes that third guy. Doomsday Device from Sting and Bully! Crowd going nuts as Sting calls for tables. A fourth A&E guy comes through the crowd and spinebusters Bully through the table for three. Flat ending, to be honest. Too deflating an ending for me.

Gang beatdown on Sting after the match. Hulk comes down to fight. They unmask the last A&E guy in the ring that cost Bully and Sting the match.

DEVON! So he reportedly was in on this "the entire time." Wow. Another guy likely given a new TNA role probably because he, like Morgan, also couldn't jump to WWE. I thought that had pretty good shock value. I think it's a good move as well for Devon because his face run was getting pretty bad. Too generic. Bully freshened his act as a singles star and got a nice push. Now it's time for Devon hopefully to do the same. Take advantage of the excellent mic skills Devon has so he can now be the voice/leader of a faction. Crowd with the "you sold out" chants.

 World Title match gets the most time. Main event intros for Aries and Hardy. I like Aries as that cocky heel, although the crowd is actually behind Aries for the intros. Nice mat wrestling at the start. Hardy takes risks on the outside to dish out more punishment. When Aries got the upper hand, the crowd responded with LOUD split chants. I love that suicide dive from Aries. And we got a second one! Only two, though. Aries with a small cut (at least when compared to Storm's blade job). Last Chancery on Hardy, but Jeff to the ropes. Aries with a hangman's neckbreaker and Hardy's head flat out nails the edge of that ramp. Sick, sick bump there. Would be amazing if he had no concussion. Twist of Fate, but only two! Swanton countered. Aries with top-rope superhurricanrana! YES! Dropkick in corner, Brainbuster by Aries, ONLY TWO! WTF. Crowd loves it. Aries misses double foot-stomp in corner, Hardy counters into a stunner. Hardy with Twist of Fate and Swanton for three. New champ! Again, gotta make Hardy want to stay. Aries had a nice run, but I think now it's a good spot to really break back into the heel act.

TNA touts this as their biggest PPV of the year, and I thought they came through with flying colors. A lot of solid matches throughout the card. A lot of storylines culminated or got new twists in an attempt to generate more interest.

Yeah, it was clear Aces & Eights was winning, but I personally loved the Devon swerve as the man seemingly behind it all. He wasn't the talker from the start, but now that Aces & Eights has a recognizable face to serve as a reminder to the fans, this should get good. ***3/4

Saturday, October 13, 2012

10/12/12 Smackdown

Sheamus vs. Tensai: *1/4

Heath Slater & Jinder Mahal vs. Santino Marella & Zack Ryder: *1/4

Kane vs. Dolph Ziggler: *1/2

Big Show vs. Kofi Kingston: *

Sin Cara vs. Damien Sandow: *

Alberto Del Rio vs. Daniel Bryan: **3/4

Josh Mathews and JBL on commentary. No Cole because Cole's already got Main Event commentary duties and other stuff. Guy's pretty busy.

We're in San Jose, and Booker opens the show to see which packs more power, a KO punch or a Brogue Kick. Great, we have another one of those punch bag things we saw too much of on NXT. So boxers have an average punch of 776 lbs per square inch, yay info. Sheamus with the Brogue Kick registers 1322. Well, a kick has more force generally than a punch, so yeah, thank you JBL. Show needs a hug. Hug it out! Oh wait. Sheamus gets Show riled up with the 45-second title reign and punches 1809 lbs/square inch. Le ouch.

Tensai blindsides Sheamus and no one cared. Sucks to be Albert, I guess. They have a match anyway. Tensai barely got offense in. Sheamus Brogue Kick wins it after about 4+ minutes.

Ricardo's afraid of Santino's cobra. Yup.

Weird trio of Slater, McIntyre, and Jinder, but hey, it gets them TV time. It's true that their careers were going nowhere as singles acts. They are now called "The Band." How generic. Same name that Hall, Waltman, and Nash used in TNA. Drew's just watching for this one. Ryder and Santino are Team CoBro, nice name.

Mysterio/Cara face Team Rhodes Scholars in the tag tournament finals on RAW. Did Slater take Derrick Bateman's finisher that he used in NXT? Basically a form of a cutter. Doesn't really matter because Bateman is probably getting a character makeover anyway.

Kane and Ziggler square off. JBL is awesome for mentioning the Super Bowl Shuffle video that the Chicago Bears did in the 80s. Gotta love Ziggler's athleticism and ability to sell well. Kane offense is methodical, but at least it isn't agonizingly slow. Vickie distracts Kane, Ziggler nails Kane with the briefcase. Ref still saw it and DQs Ziggler. Not the greatest match, but not bad. Daniel Bryan comes out claiming to save Kane.

Striker pops out of nowhere! NO lock on Striker. Kane pulls DB off by his goat beard, helps Striker up...and then chokeslams him. YES! Sucks to be Striker. Meanwhile, "Mrs. Goat Face" wins for best sign of the night. YES!

Miz on commentary as Kofi takes on Big Show. Kofi and Miz on Main Event next week for the IC Title. Show punches away Trouble in Paradise, then KOs Kofi for the win. Short, basic match. Miz rubs salt in the wound afterward.

DB and Del Rio have a match later tonight. Daniel is the tag team champions. YES.

The blonde wig finally makes an appearance in the whole "who attacked Kaitlyn?" angle. Eve and Kaitlyn try to pin it on Eve, and Eve naturally pins it on Teddy Long. I agree Long did look silly in that wig.

Singles action tonight between Sandow and Sin Cara. JBL praises Sandow, of course. Sin Cara is still a spotfest magnet. Sin Cara flies onto Rhodes. Cody retaliates behind the ref's back, and ref eventually ejects Cody. Cara with the springboard hurricanrana into a victory pin for three. Meh.

Time for Del Rio and Daniel Bryan. Laughing just how over this "NO" and "YES" thing has gotten. DB rips up a "YES" fan sign. Oh, didn't a mom slam WWE when ADR ripped up her son's sign at a live event? Um lady, heels do that ALL THE TIME for the simplest heel heat. Live with it. It's called entertainment. Alberto (when not in character) wouldn't dare do that.

Hard-hitting match. ADR targeted the left arm, as usual. NO lock on ADR. Note ADR pulled DB's pink wristband over his mouth, probably to audible something to Daniel. Nice ADR armbreaker in the ropes. DB's shoulder into the post, then cross armbreaker ends it. Easily the best match of the night. Wish the match went a little longer, though.

ADR tries to say "apex predator." Good enough. ADR mocks Orton, but turns right into Randy staring him in the face. Orton beats down ADR. Ricardo saves Del Rio, but unfortunately got nuked doing so. RKO for Ricardo. Ouch.

Friday, October 12, 2012

10/11/12 Superstars

Wade Barrett vs. Tyson Kidd: **1/2

Antonio Cesaro vs. Justin Gabriel: **3/4

Wade and Tyson in a rematch from last week. Some more nice countering from Kidd. Lots of hard hitting here. Nice job to have Kidd slap on that Sharpshooter to tease victory, but Barrett came back nicely with that Bossman Slam and Souvenir.

Cesaro and Gabriel next up. Awesome mat wrestling to start. Great job by Cesaro (outside of ring) to catch Gabriel (flying over the top rope) and slam him to the floor. Antonio isn't that much bigger than Gabriel, making it more impressive. Gabriel perfectly hit that springboard moonsault, too. Gabriel really wowed me with some nice stuff. Cesaro put on the Neutralizer in the corner and hit it for three.

Two great matches here. I feel like each coulda really used an extra couple minutes to get a higher rating from me. Either way, International Airstrike (Kidd and Gabriel) was 0 for 2 tonight. Ouch.

The show ended with replaying Punk vs. Vince in that main event fight. Basically was a no-contest here. Vince ends up telling Punk that the champ's either facing Ryback or Cena at Hell in a Cell. Not sure if Cena will be able to go in eight days, so I think they might indeed go with Ryback. Problem with that is I'd rather have Punk keep the title without dealing Ryback a loss. If it's Hell in a Cell, finishes such as countouts and DQs don't exist. A triple threat could possibly work, but again, all depends on Cena's elbow.

10/11/12 Impact

Austin Aries vs. James Storm: **1/4

Hernandez vs. AJ Styles: *1/4

Bully Ray & Sting vs. Christopher Daniels & Kazarian: **

Miss Tessmacher vs. Gail Kim: **

Jeff Hardy vs. Bobby Roode: ***1/4

Great way to start the show with Aries and Storm right off the bat. Roode comes down and tosses Storm into the post. Aries takes advantage and wins. Hard-hitting match before all that; crowd very much into it.

Tension between Styles and Angle because Styles thinks Angle's too involved with wanting to tag with Sting instead. Hogan and Sting for a promo to a major pop. Hogan basically says he and Sting had to make a deal with the devil (enemy Bully Ray) to fight Aces & Eights. Daniels and Kaz come down and try to sell the Kurt Angle tag partner idea, probably because they want to worry about one fewer team. Bully Ray agrees -- if it were a wrestling match. But it's a fight, so Bully's the man for the job. Bully wants to earn trust, so Kaz and Daniels face Bully and Sting. Interesting.

No problem watching AJ and Hernandez go at it. More tag teams in singles action to keep hyping Bound for Glory this Sunday. No Angle at ringside, but Chavo accompanies Hernandez. Chavo did distract AJ a couple times in this one. Hernandez with a huge shoulderblock for three. Fairly simple match, really. At least when compared to other matches they've had in their respective careers.

Aces & Eights putting the whole "did you lock us out, or did you lock us in?" question to the test later tonight. Meanwhile, Joseph Park eats like he hasn't been fed in weeks.

Zema Ion in street clothes complaining he has no match at BFG since he took out everyone in the X-Division. Well, not RVD. Version of a Van Daminator with the title. I think a title change may not be so bad here to freshen the product up. It may also be a way to keep RVD happy and in the company longer because the fans still go nuts for him.

Tara probably will win the title via cheating at BFG. Thing is, does this mean people like Gail Kim are out of luck? Velvet Sky is slated to return to TNA, and Tara/Velvet may not be too bad, given the depleted roster.

Bully really was a good cheerleader for Sting in the tag match. Bully got the hot tag here and the crowd bought into it for a bit. Fun segment with Sting telling Bully to get the tables. Daniels powerbombed through the table. Ref calls for the DQ. Like it matters. Crowd loved it.

Hogan's not trusting Bully Ray, but gives him a shot to prove himself anyway. Theorizing that Bully could be the one getting pinned on Sunday to get Aces & Eights the full access. Bully at first could be real apologetic and trying to make amends with Sting/Hogan over the coming weeks. Then a couple months or so later, around the turn of the new year, Bully could finally do the turn again and say he was part of the A&E gang all along. Drawing out the angle in this manner could really be a good boost for TNA in 2013. A&E wouldn't need Bully for the short term anyway. I think it's their best storyline right now, so why not milk it for all its worth?

Video package hyping Al Snow and Joey Ryan. Pretty clear to me that Joey Ryan is winning at BFG. Cheating all but guaranteed.

Very good match between Tessmacher and Gail Kim. Very physical match with good flow, nice counters. Not the best-looking finisher from Tessmacher here, but got three. Tara with the post-match ambush, but Tessmacher hits her finisher on Tara as well.

Roode and Storm start brawling backstage, but King Mo quickly breaks it up. Another decent storyline that's basically spanned off and on for a year. Hoping the street fight lives up to the build and earns four stars.

Fast start to Hardy and Roode; RR blindsides Hardy as Jeff slaps fives with ringside fans. Gotta love the amped-up crowd in a Jeff Hardy match. Guy moves merchandise like very few people can in the company. Bunch of action on the outside. Hardy still takes his risks, but still works a smarter style than before. Swanton missed, Roode spear only got two. Twist of Fate/stunner. Second one blocked and blatant low blow gives Hardy the DQ win. Ref takes chair from Roode and Twist of Fate (cutter style) from Hardy.

Aries with the heel promo and trying to do a mini-pipebomb of his own, perhaps. I think Aries works best as a heel. He's got the respect in the ring as a performer, but it won't match the likes of the pops people like Hardy will get. Hardy may get the title only because TNA wants to keep him happy, but I'd still like Aries to keep running with it if TNA wants to beef up a heelish title reign.

I thought this was a pretty good show. Solid matches and loud crowd.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

10/10/12 NXT

Bo Dallas vs. Johnny Curtis: *

Paige & Audrey Marie vs. Alicia Fox & Kaitlyn: *1/2

Leo Kruger vs. Dante Dash: N/A (squash)

Seth Rollins vs. Michael McGillicutty (NXT Title): ***1/4

CM Punk at NXT tonight as an observer.

Bo and Curtis in the first match. Johnny still hasn't done anything to make me want to watch him in the ring. Regal did his best to put Curtis' punching power over, but nope, not believing it. Quick spear wins it for Bo. OK finisher, but he seems a bit small for the move. Sure, Edge did it as well, but it was also the way Edge hyped the move that made it a bit more special.

Divas action...two newcomers against two divas who have been around longer in the company. Crowd behind Paige. Kaitlyn doing more strength moves now, which is more her style and look in the ring. Regal really loved that "winning throw" (was that what it's called?). Better divas match than I expected. Audrey looked OK in the ring (a couple nice counters as well). Paige with a short, simple comeback. The rollup finish works for me.

Ziggler's brother has a WWE first name of Briley. What the hell is with it and weird names? Seth Rollins promo. Stuff about respect. Naturally, CM Punk was in that one, too.

Kruger with the crazy crouched look in the corner before pouncing on Dash. Pretty short match. Dash really got no offense. Squash. He wants to know who will be his next trophy.

NXT Title match between Rollins and McGillicutty. Punk on commentary to watch the match. You know, Punk and Austin Aries look a bit alike with the facial hair deal. Really love Rollins' athleticism here. Lots of energy. Rollins with the springboard and MM dropkicks Rollins dangerously low, probably did catch the nuts on the way down. Regal goes nuts again with that Saito Suplex. Last couple minutes really put it over three stars for me. Counter neckbreaker and Rollins with Sliced Bread #2 for the win. Nice new move for the arsenal. Punk with some applause for Rollins. Nice gesture to end the show.

10/10/12 Main Event

Big Show vs. Randy Orton: ***1/2

Kofi Kingston vs. Michael McGillicutty: *1/4

Nice red jacket, Miz. Cole and Miz hype Big Show, then a video package on the giant and a Show heel promo. Then a nice Orton video package detailing his entire WWE career and an Orton backstage promo. Guess it's been a while since Orton's buzzed his hair.

During Orton and Show, Ric Flair's name comes up a couple of times (especially since Orton was a member of Evolution). Show with the basic power moves, which works that much more due to his size. One thing I've liked so far about Main Event is how much time the stars are given in each match. Very long again here. Back and forth between the two guys. Got very good on the second half. RKO on Show, but Show to the outside. Show comes back with elbows, a Colossal Clutch, and a chokeslam for the win. Cole and Miz hype the World Title matchup throughout, trying to hype Show as much as they can. It's more about getting Sheamus that real big win, though. Show's still effective as a performer but on the tail-end of his career.

When are they gonna drop this stupid Michael McGillicutty name? Then again, they've kept "Dolph Ziggler," right? Miz goes nuts whenever Cole brings up Larry King now. Fairly short match. Kofi wins with the SOS.

Miz gets in the ring and says Kofi will never be at his level. Loved when Kofi said he may be hiding a dagger behind his smile. It could even work if for whatever reason WWE turned Kofi heel. Miz tries the cheap shot but Kofi hits Trouble in Paradise.

IC Title match between Kofi and Miz next week. Kingston is getting a singles push now. Could be his best shot to break through the glass ceiling.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

10/8/12 RAW

Ryback vs. Primo & Epico: 1/4*

Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara vs. Titus O'Neil & Darren Young: *1/2

Wade Barrett vs. Sheamus: *1/2

Antonio Cesaro vs. Tyson Kidd: *3/4

Daniel Bryan & Kane vs. Alberto Del Rio & Dolph Ziggler: **3/4

Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow vs. Santino Marella & Zack Ryder: *1/4

Eve Torres vs. Kaitlyn (Divas Title): 1/4*

CM Punk vs. Vince McMahon: N/A

Reviews/Thoughts:Back to three-man announce team with Cole, JR, and JBL. Cena starts the show in Sacramento with his right arm in one of those more stylish braces. Vintage Cena commentary on all the other storylines. Makes one more plea for Cena/Punk at HIAC.

Ryback time! The Big Hungry? Another handicap match against Primo and Epico. Apparently, Carlos Colon owes JBL money. Best part of the match was the "That's what she said" sign when the crowd chanted "Feed me more!" Ryback shellshocks both guys and gets the win.

Little Jimmy's going through puberty, so Truth, Brodus, and Funkadactyls dance instead of having a match.

Vince McMahon with the State of the WWE Address. Punk interrupts with new yellow GTS shirt and a shaved head. Vince isn't a CM Punk guy or a Paul Heyman fan. Punk used be the spoke on the wheel but now is the wheel. Punk says Vince has slapped him in the face for years...Punk slaps Vince! YES! Punk and Vince later tonight. JBL's ecstatic.

Masked Marvels (Cara/Mysterio) predictably get to the finals with a win over the Primetime Players. Short match here. All but assured that Rhodes Scholars will be their opponents. In related news, Kofi and Truth amicably part ways as a tag team. Maybe this gives Evan Bourne a window to return once his foot heals.

Heyman telling Punk this match with Vince is a must-lose situation. Punk says he'll find a way to win anyway.

Big Show comes out during the first few seconds of Sheamus/Barrett. Extremely hard-hitting match. Tensai comes out to get revenge on Sheamus after what happened on Smackdown. Match thrown out. Sheamus gets a Brogue Kick again on Tensai. Show blocks another Brogue Kick and tosses Sheamus over the top.

Cena's making media appearances, such as Live with Kelly and Michael, to promote the WWE's partnership with Susan G. Komen and Breast Cancer Awareness.

Cesaro and Kidd in a decent match. Hey, I like chili cheese fries! Kidd gets a bunch of nice offense in, but Cesaro with that Euro uppercut and Neutralizer for another victory.

Team Hell No faces Del Rio and Ziggler in tag action. DB's "YES" stuff has gotten incredibly over. Love it. More of Kane and DB having to tag themselves in to get in offense. ADR and Ziggler working well as a team. The one time DB actually wants to make a tag, Ziggler cuts him off. Very good finish. Kane gets the honor of pinning an opponent this time, and DB doesn't like it.

JR can't talk Vince out of doing this match. But a lot of vintage JR stuff and Vince impersonating Rock.

Larry King on RAW again with his wife. Miz basically introduces himself. Hey, it's Miz's birthday! Miz wants everyone to sing happy birthday to him. Larry King says Kofi Kingston is his new guest. Nice crack from Miz about the number of wives Larry's had. New wife with the water to Miz's face. Kofi throws Miz off the stage. Segment didn't seem like it got nearly the response it should have. I guess Kofi is Miz's next opponent.

As expected, Rhodes Scholars defeat Santino and Ryder to get to the finals of the tag title tournament. Rhodes with the Disaster Kick on Santino here. Finals next week on RAW in Nashville. Slater, Jinder, and McIntyre pick the bones and beat up Santino some more.

Layla on commentary as Kaitlyn finally her title shot against Eve. Kaitlyn wears the tape on the boot to show off the storyline ankle injury. Nice target. Kaitlyn with some power moves (Torture Rack included), but "wisely" decides to use her injured leg for a backbreaker. Eve with the heelhook on the injured ankle for a submission win, then keeps the hold on until Layla intervenes. Eve suddenly shows concern for Kaitlyn. Layla shoves Eve. Since Beth Phoenix is reportedly leaving the company, I'll honestly go back to not caring about this division until Sara Del Rey shows up. I'm just happy she's with WWE, and Cesaro is happy, too.

DB, Kane, and Larry King. Owls, goats, trolls, fruit rollups, Skeletor! Skit of the night!

Punk and McMahon time! Punk attacks McMahon from behind before the bell. Naturally taking on more of a street fight feel. JBL wins for calling Cole a middle-aged man in horrible shape (while Vince is a senior citizen with an amazing physique). Announce table becomes a war zone. Vince leaps over the announce table (sorta) onto Punk! Hope he didn't blow his quads. Looks like a black left eye or something on Vince. Vince with kendo stick! Vince punches Heyman and takes the WWE Title. Punk grabs his own stick. Punk begs off to get the crowd riled up, then low blow to Vince. Punk wants a GTS but Ryback! Punk wants to get away, but Cena tosses him back in. Big lariat! Shellshock time...but Punk gets out and escapes through the crowd. It's basically here that Punk reportedly hit the wrong person in the crowd (an innocent fan instead of a plant). As for the "match," it really never took place. Just a fight all over the ringside area.

Vince tells Punk that the champ will either face Ryback or Cena at Hell in a Cell. I'm still skeptical that Cena will get the all-clear in time to compete. At the same time, I'm concerned that if Punk faces Ryback inside HIAC, you'd have two guys who basically have to keep winning square off. Ryback needs all the wins he can get, while Punk should seriously hold onto the title until at least the Royal Rumble. No wiggle room for countouts or DQs inside the cell. I'd rather have Punk and Ryback square off on RAW, where Punk can weasel his way into a DQ or a countout situation.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

10/5/12 Smackdown

Titus O'Neil & Darren Young vs. Kofi Kingston & R-Truth: *3/4

Ryback vs. Primo: 1/2*

Layla vs. Alicia Fox: 1/4*

Wade Barrett vs. (jobber): N/A (squash)

Miz vs. Sheamus: *1/2

Daniel Bryan & Kane vs. Alberto Del Rio & David Otunga: *3/4

Tensai vs. Big Show: 3/4*

CM Punk vs. Dolph Ziggler: *3/4

Show starts things off with a promo basically saying he'll be nuking Sheamus at Hell in a Cell. Poor Alberto is out of the title picture again. Sheamus comes out, may the best man win. Show walks away. Sheamus has a plan. Footage of Show's 45-second win shown. Yup. Then Sheamus' 18-second win over DB. Show then extends his hand and Sheamus with the diss to Show this time. Add more fuel to the war.

Last first-round Tag Team Title tournament match here: Boom Jimmys vs. Primetime Players. PTP takes over the first half of the match, Kofi with the hot tag. Usual signature moves from Kofi. Titus trips Kofi up, gutbuster from D-Young, and PTP wins. Millions of dollars!

Ryback nukes Primo. Well, at least Primo's got a secondary role to job. Ryback's always looking for his next meal. Guess Vince wants Ryback to stick to smaller opponents so we don't get the botches we saw against Tensai. I like the "Meathook" name for the lariat. Epico got taken out as well. Shellshocked for three.

Two Floridians square off in Layla and Alicia Fox. Alicia mostly attacking the legs of Layla. Basically, Layla with a roundhouse kick out of nowhere for three. Short match, not much flow. Sad sight to this division. Layla says it'll be sweet when Eve loses that title. Cole's all "the assailant had blonde hair and Eve's a brunette." I'm interested if they'll do something with the assailant wearing a wig at the time.

Punk confronts Ziggler about "leaving him high and dry" on RAW. It's finally happened, we're apparently getting Punk and Ziggler!

Barrett with a quick win with the Souvenir. I didn't catch the name of the jobber, but does it really matter? I think it was Mike Hayes or Mike Rays. Whatever.

Sheamus and Miz in a champ vs. champ match. Second such match for Sheamus this week (he faced Punk on Main Event). Miz with his usual moves. Sheamus gets his in. Sheamus setting up for Brogue Kick but Show comes down. Show KOs Miz so that Sheamus gets DQ'd. Good message to send.

Otunga shows footage from after Smackdown went off the air last week. ADR beat down Orton, injury angle for Orton to go film his movie. Orton's music hits but it's ADR and Ricardo coming out to boos. ADR mocks Orton. Booker says Alberto's got some free time now. Team Hell No!

Typical Team Hell No match. DB again steals the thunder from Kane. Top-rope headbutt to Otunga wins it. ADR walked away a few seconds prior, so Otunga was screwed anyway.

It's Teddy Long and Eve not seeing eye to eye and Booker getting more on Teddy's case. I'd like a slow progression to Long getting removed and Eve getting a larger role. I'm not sure if that would necessarily lead to Booker slowly becoming a heel GM, but maybe it'll work.

Tensai and Show next. I'm real unsure on Tensai's standing in the company right now, other than management is real down on him. Lots of hard hitting here. Sheamus comes down, Brogue Kicks Tensai for the DQ. Yup. Anything you can do, I can do better.

Punk and Ziggler in the main event. Ziggler tries using the tights to win (only two) and Punk complains, even though that's how he beat Sheamus on Main Event (the show). One mistake from Ziggler, and Punk hits the GTS for three. Not bad, but they could easily do way better if given more time.

Post-match promo on the announce table. Punk still refuses to face Cena at Hell in a Cell. Nothing new there, fellas.

Friday, October 5, 2012

10/4/12 Superstars

Wade Barrett vs. Tyson Kidd: **

David Otunga vs. Michael McGillicutty: *1/4

Tensai vs. Yoshi Tatsu: 1/2*

Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow vs. Jimmy Uso & Jey Uso: **1/2

Barrett and Kidd start Superstars off. Barrett with that striker and street-fight style, while Kidd comes back with quick, high-flying stuff. Wade's offense is fairly simple, but believable and effective. Souvenir gets three for Wade in a nice match.

Otunga and his excess body oil get wrestling time against McGillicutty. Frankly, both of these guys are supposed to be heels, but the fans seem to at least care about this. Honestly never woulda thought a couple years ago that Otunga would have a seemingly more secure place on the roster (in terms of character development) than McGillicutty. Verdict (spinebuster) wins it for Otunga.

No Sakamoto again as Tensai comes out for action. Tensai's spot on the roster a bit more in question, especially after the whole deal with Ryback on RAW. But hey, he still gets short wins over guys like Yoshi Tatsu. Not really saying much, though. Yoshi's barely won anything lately. Short statement on the mic in Japanese.

Main event is Usos and Rhodes Scholars in a rematch of the tag title tournament match. Announcers mention Usos being a natural team as brothers, while Rhodes Scholars are new as a tag team. In other words, Rhodes Scholars find a way to win, right? Somewhat lengthy match here for free TV. Rhodes Scholars had a few shining moments as a tag team. A bit of chaos at the end. Sandow pins Jimmy with his hangman's neckbreaker for three. Nice momentum for Rhodes Scholars as they continue their march in the tag title tournament.