WWE Smackdown Spoilers For Friday January 24, 2014

smackdown

The WWE held their Smackdown tapings last night in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The show will air on Friday night on the SyFy channel starting at 8 p.m. ET. Here is what happened at the tapings.

-Big Show and Rey Mysterio defeated The Real Americans. Zeb in a wheelchair did a promo before the match attempting to give Show and Rey a team name. Rey got the pin after a splash off the Big Show’s shoulders. Afterward, Paul Heyman came out to cut a promo for Brock Lesnar, who did not appear.

-The Miz defeated Brodus Clay. Wade Barrett delivered live commentary of the match about how awful both men were. He got a bigger babyface reaction than Miz or Clay. Miz won in short order.

-AJ Lee (w/Tamina) defeated Cameron (w/Naomi). After the win, AJ went after Cameron, and Naomi cleared the ring.

-Ryback and Curtis Axel defeated Los Matadores (w/El Torito). El Torito attacked after the match and hit Ryback with a top rope splash onto the floor. Ryback acted super mad afterward.

-CM Punk cut a promo on The Authority and the Royal Rumble. Kane interrupted and said Punk had a .00000186 percent chance of winning. Punk called Kane a sellout and said he’d show why he’s been the best in the world since day one.

-Luke Harper and Erick Rowan (w/Bray Wyatt) squashed The Prime Time Players. Afterward, Bray Wyatt hit Sister Abigail on Darren Young. Bray talked about how much Daniel Bryan will suffer on Sunday. Daniel Bryan interrupted with a promo.

-Kofi Kingston defeated Fandango.

-Goldust, Cody Rhodes, Big E Langston, and The Uso Brothers fought The Shield and The New Age Outlaws to a no-contest in a ten-man tag. The match ended in a DQ/no-contest and a huge battle royal brawl occurred to close the show. Big E hit the Big Ending on Roman Reigns. The ring eventually cleared out to leave Punk and the Shield.

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Results were courtesy of ProWrestling.net.

WWE Smackdown Spoilers For Friday January 10, 2014

smackdown

The WWE held their Smackdown tapings last night in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The show will air on tomorrow night on the SyFy channel starting at 8 p.m. ET. Here is what happened at the tapings.

-Luke Harper and Erick Rowan fought The Uso Brothers to a double count out. The Wyatts had an interesting entrance. The lights went out and when they came back on they were in the ring. Harper and Rowan appeared to be on the same page. An intense match. Daniel Bryan and Bray Wyatt came out and beat up the Uso’s. All four members of The Wyatt Family beat up The Uso Brothers.

-Big Show appeared on MizTV. He spoke about his confrontation with Brock Lesnar, then challenged him to a fight. Paul Heyman came out and announced Lesnar vs. Show at the Royal Rumble.

-Rey Mysterio, Sin Cara, and Los Matadores beat Ryback, Curtis Axel, and The Real Americans. Interesting match. Sin cara looked very good.

-Randy Orton beat Big E Langston in a non-title match. A long, good match.

-Bray Wyatt cut another promo talking about Sister Abigail. Daniel Bryan spoke about how everyone is a lie.

-Xavier Woods defeated Fandango.

-The Shield defeated C.M. Punk and The New Age Outlaws. A good, fast paced match.

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Results were courtesy of ProWrestling.net.

2013 Match of the Year

For every rivalry that takes place, for every great promo delivered in (and out of) the ring, and for every backstage news that sends fans to Twitter in a frenzy, the most important drama takes place when fireworks disappear and the lights go down.  A collar-and-elbow position signals the oldest type of storytelling in the business.  It means that two wrestlers are going to finally settle their business, and no matter happens between the opening and closing bells, fans in attendance and at home better buckle their seat-belts. And so with that in mind, we pick the battles that won over our hearts and minds this year… [Read more...]

Look Back at 2013 in Wrestling, WWE Poised for Big 2014

Brian, Steven and Michael from Between The Ropes are back for the weekly Flagship show as they back at 2013 in wrestling including their thoughts on the match of the year, superstar of the year, the biggest news story, the best feud and more.  Plus, they look ahead to 2014 in what could be a very big year for the WWE with the expected launch of the WWE Network and how they could transform their business.

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2013 Feud of the Year

Every professional wrestler is only as good as the opponent they face.  There’d be no Shawn Michaels without Bret Hart, no Stone Cold Steve Austin without Vince McMahon, no Mankind without The Rock, and no John Cena without JBL.  And while modern ‘sports entertainment’ seems content to fill much of its programming time with backstage skits and dancing segments, the idea that two men sometimes  just need to beat the crap out of each other lives on. [Read more...]

Daniel Bryan Joins the Wyatt Family, Brock Lesnar Returns on Final WWE Raw of 2013

RAW_1075_Photo_234Brian and Steve discuss the final WWE Raw of 2013 including Daniel Bryan in a shocking turn of events joining the Wyatt Family, Brock Lesnar making his return alongside Paul Heyman, The Shield coming closer to breaking up, Batista returning to the WWE and the talk of his “stealing” someone’s spot, possible plans leading up to and through WrestleMania 30, The Rock announcing his plans for that show, Jeff Jarrett leaving TNA Wrestling, AJ Styles working for Ring of Honor and his future with TNA and more.

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2013 Heel of the Year

For all that is good in professional wrestling, our heroes would have nothing to fight about if not for the heel characters that cause anguish at every turn.  It’s classic booking 101: the babyface chases the heel, and crowds pay good money to see him or her get their revenge. Not every bad-guy in 2013 was worth writing home about, but a few stood out above the rest. [Read more...]

CM Punk And Daniel Bryan Should Be Wrestling For The Right To Be Called Undisputed Champion

bryan and punkThe last time we saw an undisputed WWE champion was Brock Lesnar after he defeated The Rock at Summerslam 2002 to win the title. Right after that event, due to the brand extension the WWE created the World Heavyweight Championship.

The WWE announced on Monday Night Raw this past week that WWE Champion Randy Orton will battle World Heavyweight Champion John Cena in a title vs title match at the TLC pay-per-view on December 15th. As soon as the match was made, people on social media and various wrestling websites were saying the WWE wasn’t stating this was a unification match and there would be a way Orton and Cena would each walk out with a title.

WWE released their weekly Michael Cole and Triple H video interview today. HHH stated that the goal of the match was to have one unified champion coming out of the match and heading into 2014.

Let’s go with what HHH is hoping for and having one unified champion at the end of the TLC event. The question is though, are John Cena and Randy Orton the right guys to have a match to determine this?

A John Cena-Randy Orton unification match in 2008 would have been a dream matchup as they were the two hottest and most over acts in the WWE. Going into ’08, Orton was on a roll as the WWE Champion and Cena made a grand return at the end of the month from a torn pectoral muscle at the Royal Rumble. Orton defeated Jeff Hardy in a very good match and Cena ended up winning the Rumble. Instead of having the match at WrestleMania 24, the match took place at the No Way Out event in February. Cena won the match by disqualification. A triple threat match involving Orton, Cena and HHH took place at WrestleMania 24 with Orton retaining.

Now fast forward to 2013 and both Cena and Orton are champions and no one really cares. Orton comes out to the ring and you could hear a pin drop. When he cuts a promo, you get the same reaction. Cena comes out, gets a moderate reaction, but when he starts talking, the fans don’t buy what he’s saying in a promo and start chanting “boring, boring”.

You watch the opening segment on Raw this past Monday when Orton, HHH and Stephanie are in the ring and the fans are chanting for Daniel Bryan and chanting “YES YES”. Cena came out and at least acknowledged the reaction and that’s what the fans want. But right after Cena did that, he went back to discussing why there should be one unified champion, with the match being made right after that. Fans in the arena weren’t very interested when the announcement was made.

About 90 minutes into the show, CM Punk and Daniel Bryan came out for an interview with Renee Young before their match with The Wyatt Family. Both guys by far got the two best reactions of the night. But that has been the case for most of 2013.

Punk started out the year as a heel and then when he came back in June at the Payback pay-per-view, he turned back to a babyface role facing Chris Jericho. Punk then started a feud with Paul Heyman at the Money In The Bank pay-per-view when Heyman cost him a chance to win the MITB briefcase. Punk faced Brock Lesnar at Summerslam and has had a feud with Heyman through the Hell In A Cell pay-per-view.

Bryan has been the hottest act in the WWE in 2013. The Washington state native started out the year stuck in a tag team with Kane and then got back into singles starting at the MITB. Bryan then headlined Summerslam winning the WWe championship from John Cena, but after the match HHH pedigreed Bryan, with Orton cashing in his MITB and winning the title at the Hell In A Cell event.

Bryan and Punk teamed at Survivor Series on Sunday and defeated Erick Rowan and Luke Harper. It looks like after Raw on Monday that Bryan will face Brey Wyatt and Punk will be facing Roman Reigns.

Those matches are fine, but do nothing in the grand scheme of things for Bryan and Punk.

The WWE has always gone by the mantra of saying that they listen to the fans and they give the fans what they want. In this instance this isn’t the case whatsoever. You have the two hottest acts in all of wrestling feuding with guys who we aren’t sure are going to even reach a main event level.

The time we should see a unification match should be at Wrestlemania 30 with CM Punk and Daniel Bryan battling out to see who is the best wrestler in the world and the right to be called undisputed champion. Lets give the fans what they really want to see because at the end of the day, it is all about the fans.

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WWE RAW Reaction and Review – November 11th, 2013

Raw England 11-11

You know how WWE always seems a little bit… different when it’s overseas? Well, last night’s show opening had to be one of the most bizarre segments ever. Not only did we find out that The Authority was on vacation (really?), we had Brad Maddox and suited-up Kane arguing about Randy Orton’s opponent. The Result? Orton got stuck in a 2-on-1 match against the tag-team champions. Huh? Because, really, WWE, it makes the MOST sense if your HEEL AUTHORITY FIGURES put the HEEL CHAMPION in a handicap match against the BABYFACE CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM…. [Read more...]

WWE Friday Night Smackdown (Non-Spoilers) For Tonight’s Show

WWE Friday Night Smackdown airs tonight on SyFy starting at 8 p.m. ET. The show was taped on Tuesday in Birmingham, Alabama. We posted the spoilers from the show earlier in the week. If you didn’t read the spoilers, here is what will be on the show tonight.

- Triple H Interview
- The Usos vs Luke Harper and Erick Rowan
- AJ Lee vs Nikki Bella
- Los Matadores vs Heath Slater and Drew McIntyre
- Ryback and Paul Heyman vs CM Skunk
- Alberto Del Rio Interview
- The Great Khali vs Fandango
- Daniel Bryan, Big E Langston, Cody Rhodes and Goldust vs Randy Orton and The Shield

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WWE Hell In A Cell 2013 Updated Lineup

WWE Hell In A Cell takes place this Sunday from the American Airlines in Miami, Florida. The main event will feature Daniel Bryan vs Randy Orton for vacant WWE title with Shawn Michaels as the special guest referee inside the Hell In A Cell.

A couple of matches were made last night on the show, bringing the total to six matches. Here is the updated lineup for WWE Hell in a Cell.

- Daniel Bryan vs Randy Orton for the vacant WWE title with Shawn Michaels as special guest referee (Hell In A Cell)
- Alberto Del Rio vs John Cena for the World Heavyweight Championship
- Paul Heyman and Ryback vs CM Punk (Hell In A Cell)
- Cody Rhodes and Goldust vs Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns vs The Usos for the WWE Tag Team Titles
- AJ Lee vs Brie Bella for the WWE Divas Titles
- Curtis Axel vs Big E Langston for the Intercontinental Title

More matches can be added as the event doesn’t take place for five days. With this lineup, will you be buying the show?

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WWE RAW Reaction and Review – October 7th, 2013

Big Show KO Triple H

Hold on to your cowboy hats, folks – last night’s WWE RAW stoked up the hype train in a big way. The show opening, with Big Show getting “fired” by Stephanie McMahon, left me with mixed feelings. I liked the idea here (especially since it set the tone for Show’s re-emergence later in the evening). Unfortunately, Stephanie and Show both had their best Brendan Frasier acting hat on. There are ways to sell moments as believable without being over the top, but that subtlety was overlooked here. [Read more...]

WWE Battleground Predictions and Preview

WWE-Battleground-2013-Poster
WWE starts off a month of many pay-per-view events tonight with the new event Battleground. The card for this event is incredibly lackluster, seeing a rematch of the most recent event in the main event of this one and a number of other matches that just seem thrown together to make matches for WWE’s other event at the end of this month, Hell in a Cell. As the guys mentioned in the video preview on Friday, one has to wonder why WWE didn’t decide to axe this pay-per-view event and build these matches up more for the Hell in a Cell event. For now though, let’s preview what the pay-per-view buyer can expect from this event.

The main event will see Daniel Bryan take on Randy Orton for the vacant WWE Championship. This whole storyline of the title being held up just seems like a poor excuse for these two to try and meet up for the title again and yet again gave WWE another way to give Bryan the title only to take it away from him again. Knowing that these two men will almost certainly meet up again in three weeks in the cell, this match really does not seem to matter. Bryan and Orton will put on a great match as these two men tend to do, if the writers allow the match to be a clean match between the two men. Being that they are building this up for a third match in the cell, I’m highly skeptical that these two will have a clean one-on-one encounter. That being said, I expect Orton to win in a fashion that will permit the rematch with Bryan in the Cell.

The main match on the undercard sees World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio defending his title against Rob Van Dam in a Battleground Hardcore Rules match. This match is really seeming to highlight RVD’s hardcore past and each match he has on the road to this one has shown a particular aspect of that, each time ending with RVD hitting his patented Van Terminator. That being said, I still do not see RVD winning the title in this one. If I had to guess I would say that this may be the match that leads to Ricardo Rodriquez reuniting with Alberto Del Riomby costing RVD the title. The only way I see Van Dam winning is if Damien Sandow cashes in Money in the Bank afterward and I don’t see him cashing that in quite yet.

Remember a year or so ago when Ryback was taking on CM Punk for the WWE Championship inside Hell in a Cell? Remember how well that match went? Well, take away the WWE Championship, the cell and move Paul Heyman into the corner of Ryback and were pretty much gonna get the same thing without the screwy finish involving Brad Maddox. Punk should win this one, but keep the feud going with Paul Heyman and his “guys” for the rest of the year. Either way, this match isn’t gonna be pretty.

Speaking of Paul Heyman guys, Intercontinental Champion Curtis Axel will defend his title against R-Truth. Truth looked pretty good against Axel in their previous encounters and this match has the elements to be a surprise hit. Axel has had a tendency of losing in his non-title matches as of recently, but always pulls out the win when the belt is on the line. Whether or not Truth can break that streak is dependent on how much influence Heyman &/or Ryback have on the match and its outcome. In the end, I see Axel retaining in a fashion to allow them to meet up again at Hell in a Cell for the title.

In a match featuring one of the most out of left field story lines I can recall, Cody Rhodes and his brother Goldust will take on WWE Tag Team Champions Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins of the Shield. At stake is the fate of their WWE futures and their father Dusty’s job as a trainer in NXT. This whole, “let’s pick on the Rhodes family” storyline just baffles me.

I don’t really understand why creative went in this direction, nor do I really know where this storyline is going. Due to that, I’m kind of at an impasse for predicting a winner. On the one hand, The Shield have always been managing to find ways to win on the pay-per-view. On the other I don’t see WWE bringing in all of the Rhodes family into a storyline for one mediocre pay-per-view. I can almost see this going to the Rhodes clan by means of DQ leading to a possible six-man with Dusty and Ambrose involved at Hell in a Cell.

The WWE Divas Championship will be defended on the pay-per-view when champion AJ Lee defends against Brie Bella. This could be a solid match for the Divas title as these two women both have what it takes to hold the belt. That being said, even though Brie and her sister have been getting a big push in conjunction with the Total Divas show on E!. AJ walks out of the pay-per-view with the belt, if only for the reason that she is the only true heel Diva in the whole division right now and the other Divas fighting to take her down is better for the division than nothing. The only way that I see Brie taking the title is if the WWE were wanting to parlay her real-life romance with Daniel Bryan into a power couple type of storyline. The problem is, that doesn’t even seem to be close to an idea the creative team has though of.

In a match that will more than likely open the main card of the event, Bray Wyatt takes on Kofi Kingston. This match comes after weeks of Bray Wyatt’s cryptic messages directed at Kingston after his matches. There is no doubt in my mind that Kingston has the ability to make this match an entertaining spectacle when working off of Wyatt’s bizarre and rough offense. In the end though, the Erik Rowan and Luke Harper’s presence at ringside will be the deciding factor in Wyatt winning this match.

The pre-show match for this pay-per-view sees former World Heavyweight Champion Dolph Ziggler take on World Heavyweight Championship Money in the Bank contract holder Damien Sandow. It’s a match with Ziggler in it, meaning it definitely has the potential to be a fantastic match even for the pre-show. The fact that he’s taking on Sandow also has the potential to make this match a bit of a sleeper as WWE has to start building him up as a serious contender to the title if Money in the Bank is going to continue to be anything of importance. For that reason, look for Sandow to kick off the night with a win.

Keeping all of that in mind, if that sounds like a good way to spend your Sunday night, Battleground will be live on pay-per-view tonight starting at 8pm ET/5pm PT. For more news and results, keep it posted here at Between the Ropes.

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Between The Ropes | Jonathan Snowden – October 3, 2013

snowdenBrian talks with Jonathan Snowden of Bleacher Report about covering wrestling for the site for the past four months and the experience so far, talking to wrestlers in character, his latest interview with Dusty Rhodes, talking with Paul Heyman and how tricky that can be, realism in wrestling, growing up in the south watching wrestling, the WWE Battleground PPV this Sunday and more.

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WWE Smackdown Spoilers For Friday October 4, 2013

The WWE held their Smackdown tapings last night from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The show will air on Friday night on the SyFy channel starting at 8 p.m. ET. Here is what happened at last night’s tapings.

- Big Show kicks off SmackDown and says he’s fed up and going to lose it soon. He says everything is Triple H’s fault. Triple H comes out and talks about Show’s financial troubles. He changes tonight’s main event to Randy Orton and The Shield vs. Big Show.

- Rob Van Dam and Fandango go to disqualification when Summer Rae gets involved. Ricardo Rodriguez was also at ringside. After the match, RVD hit the Van Terminator with a trash can on Fandango.

- Ryback beat R-Truth. After the match, Curtis Axel attacked Truth.

- Backstage, RVD sends the beat up trash can to Alberto Del Rio as a gift.

- Alberto Del Rio beat Dolph Ziggler by submission in the match of the night.

- Los Matadores defeated Heath Slater and Jinder Mahal. After the match, El Torito splashes out onto 3MB on the floor.

- Paul Heyman cuts a promo and says Ryback will destroy CM Punk at Battleground.

- Brie Bella defeated Aksana. The Bella Twins celebrate after the match but Tamina Snuka and AJ Lee interrupt. AJ cuts a promo on Brie and their match at Battleground.

- Kofi Kingston defeats Big E Langston with a roll up.

- Bray Wyatt comes out and cuts a promo. He says to follow the buzzards at Battleground.

- Big Show beat Randy Orton and The Shield by DQ after Orton uses a steel chair when Show takes control of the match and fights off all four opponents. The Usos and Daniel Bryan run out to make the save and even the odds. SmackDown ends with a bunch of “yes!” chants.

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Between The Ropes WWE Raw Review Podcast – October 1, 2013

Brian and Steve talk about WWE Raw from Monday night, the lead-in to this Sunday’s Battleground PPV, the debut of Los Matadores and El Torito (!), the Daniel Bryan – Randy Orton angle at the end of the show, the Paul Heyman ‘proposal’ to Ryback and more.  Plus, they talk about Hulk Hogan with his TNA contract coming to an end, the angle involving him last week and this coming week on Impact and TNA as a company.

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In Defense of The Miz

the miz

Hey internet, it’s time to give The Miz a break. Not that he doesn’t deserve the criticism, but he probably doesn’t deserve the non-stop nitpicking that happens every time MizTV comes on. He probably doesn’t deserve to be called out for using the figure-four leglock, an obviously corporate decision. And he probably doesn’t deserve to be made fun of for Real World anymore. [Read more...]

Between The Ropes WWE Raw Review Podcast – September 24, 2013

Brian and Steve talk about Raw from Monday night in what was mostly a bad night for the good guys , if the WWE is being too inside with storylines, how Daniel Bryan got another shot for the WWE Championship, CM Punk and Paul Heyman, the Rhodes family making an appearance and more.  Plus, they talk about Rob Van Dam’s contract, the Summerslam buyrate, the WWE video game, the Hulk Hogan watch and more.

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