Greetings from the East Coast!
This week’s column is going to be a short one thanks to Hurricane Sandy (that bitch). My condo lost power late Monday night, but I was huddled up at a friend’s house in Queens since Sunday night, lucky enough to be in one of the few areas with electricity. Honestly, I’ve never experienced anything like this. Hurricane Irene was pretty bad, but this was something else entirely. I’m sure by now many of you have seen images of the devastation caused by the storm; if you haven’t, I suggest that you do. Trees uprooted everywhere, downed power lines and telephone poles, houses caved in, and my own sister’s basement apartment flooded beyond repair. Needless to say, I was unable to catch the Hell in a Cell PPV and most of Raw, but I have seen snippets here and there. I’ll just list my thoughts this week and we’ll see where it goes from there.
*I saw the clip of the Orton/del Rio botch from Sunday night. Holy cow, did that look uncoordinated! I thought these guys were professionals.
*Heard the World Heavyweight Championship match’s finish was decided at the literal last minute. Good to see the company has this feud mapped out for weeks to come (that was a bit of smarkasm).
*Out of all the finishes the WWE could have gone with during the Hell in a Cell bout, the crooked ref actually makes almost as much sense as using Brock Lesnar. I still would have preferred Brock, but using Brad Maddox to “correct” his error in judgment from weeks ago actually makes sense story-wise. That’s not to say I’m giving the WWE credit for remembering loose ends; the end of that match was hotly contested for the last week by the creative team, so it’s not like they were planning this all along.
*Ryback has in no way been built up to be Goldberg, so his winning streak was not going to impress anyone. In WCW, Goldberg exploded into a phenomenon that caught the company unawares; here, Ryback is being compared TO Goldberg and isn’t getting the same level of response. A loss would not hurt him in the long run. Now he can be a big hoss who mows down everyone and doesn’t lose clean.
*John Cena’s elbow surgery is the best thing that could have happened to CM Punk. Think about it: had Cena been medically cleared to wrestle, one of two things would have happened. We’d have another screwjob finish because Punk can never go over Cena clean, or Cena would have ended Punk’s lengthy title reign. Based on the way the champ has been booked for the last few months, his record-breaking reign is all he has to lay claim to; otherwise he’s just another egotistical heel.
*With no title defense at Survivor Series, CM Punk will officially have held the title for over a year. Hopefully the company lets him surpass Cena’s reign of 380 days, which would technically make him the longest reigning champion since the Hulk Hogan era. I’m sorry, Foley, but a feat like that would indeed be impressive. Look at how JBL, once branded as a midcarder-for-life, made his career as the longest reigning champion in Smackdown history.
*Did the WWE Tag Team Championship match really end in a ridiculous DQ? How absolutely insulting. What was the point of building up this magnificent tournament, only to end the title defense in a disqualification? You mean to tell me that neither team could have kept their momentum from a loss?
*Well, I called it last week when I said that Cesaro would defend his title in an unannounced match with Justin Gabriel. Many are claiming it was the match of the night. Kudos to both men.
*That 3MB “interview” skit on Raw was pretty funny, actually. Jinder Mahal really sold his line well, and I’m starting to embrace the in-joke that these guys are NOT to be taken seriously. It’s just absurd enough to work (while also being another fine example of the WWE throwing shit at the wall to see what sticks).
*The big reveal of the Survivor Series teams on Raw was entirely predictable, including the obvious swerve that Foley would be replaced by Ryback. See, Sanders? This is what I meant about Smackdown being something worth watching. On Friday, we’ll get a three-minute recap of Monday’s events, allowing anyone who missed Raw to see the sadly pathetic and underwhelming reveal of both teams without having to wait until 11:05 pm.
*John Cena vs Dolph Ziggler? Have they just decided Ziggler is not worth giving a decent title reign to? I think he’s fallen into the Kofi Kingston class of “Yeah, he can wrestle and make others look good, but he’s not main event material.”
That’ll do for me this week. See you all this weekend for another Smackdown Breakdown with Kelly Floyd.
So long, Beth Phoenix, and thanks for all the fish.
Tags: 3MB, alberto del rio, Antonio Cesaro, big show, brad maddox, Brock Lesnar, cm punk, Dolph Ziggler, goldberg, Hell in a Cell, jbl, john cena, Justin Gabriel, Mick Foley, Mike Gojira, monday night raw, randy orton, ryback, sheamus, Smackdown, survivor series, WCW, World Heavyweight Championship, WWE, wwe championship, WWE Tag Team Championship