This week makes the case there should be a roster swap after Survivor Series

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Survivor Series is just next month. RAW’s TLC is the Sunday after next and Smackdown’s Starcade is two weeks later. We’ll get to those two PPVs in a bit but between Asuka’s RAW debut at TLC, Paige’s Smackdown debut (likely before or at Survivor Series) and the possability of Samoa Joe returning in time for the Royal Rumble (Reminder: He got hurt at Summer Slam), the time for roster shakeup is after Survivor Series. This is aside from the rumors Kevin Owens may be moved to RAW BEFORE Survivor Series.

Here are the Superstars who would benefit the most from a roster change:

  • Darren Young (RAW): Aside from the push he got when he returned from injury last year with Bob Backlund, not much has been done with him. A move to Smackdown would allow him to develop in the midcard level.
  • Bray Wyatt (RAW): I think we can all agree at this point the experiment was a massive failure.
  • Sasha Banks (RAW): Given things are being set up for Charlotte Flair to feud with Ronda Rousey, it makes sense for Sasha to be sent to Smackdown to reuinite the Four Horsewomen. Asuka will dominate RAW out the gate (and will obviously debut as a Babyface) so it makes sense for her to move. There’s not much left for her to do on RAW and besides, Team Red can afford to be without her because of Asuka.
  • Bayley (RAW): Given things are being set up for Charlotte Flair to feud with Ronda Rousey, it makes sense for Bayley to be sent to Smackdown to reuinite the Four Horsewomen. Asuka will dominate RAW out the gate (and will obviously debut as a Babyface) so it makes sense for her to move. Plus there’s the interesting tidbit Bayley dropped in an interview she may Heel turn soon.
  • Dolph Ziggler (Smackdown): Honestly, he needs a real title run. The token Intercontinental Title win last year off the Miz, then losing it the following Smackdown was just dumb. Having him win the U.S. title on RAW could help rebuild him given Dolph hasn’t been in the title picture for years and it’s clearly hurting his potential.
  • Naomi (Smackdown): Assuming Sasha and Bayley move to Smackdown, it makes sense for Naomi–a former 2-time Smackdown Women’s Champion–to be moved to RAW to clash with Asuka and Alexa Bliss.
  • Natalya (Smackdown): Assuming Sasha and Bayley move to Smackdown, it makes sense for Natalya–presumably then the former Smackdown Women’s Champion–to be movedto RAW to clash with Asuka and Alexa Bliss.

…There is also talk WWE might bring back ECW as a third flagship show. The reason the dirtsheets are saying this is there haven’t been large roster releases like there have been in recent years. Former Superstars leaving on their own or asking to be released are the likely reasons we haven’t been seeing mass layoffs in a while.

Speaking of:

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The rumors are RAMPANT Neville is quitting WWE after he walked out an hour into last week’s episode of RAW. The reason should be obvious: Enzo’s Mega Push after the latter’s breakup with Big Cass a few months back. The day after Big Cass got injured, Enzo’s surprise debut on 205 Live happened.

You have to keep in mind Neville is a workhorse. When the Cruiserweight Division relaunched two years ago, they lacked star power. Neville, who was already known from his years on the main roster took the opportunity to reinvent himself as a Heel for the first time in the Cruiserweight Division.

You can’t help but feel for him as his career was stale for a while until he went to the Cruiserweight Division. I would stop short of saying he’s geting buried in exchange for Enzo’s (clearly undeserved) Mega Push though. You have to be mindful Neville did everything he was told to do and literally carried the Cruiserweight Division after becoming the Champion a while back.

WWE was quick to deny Neville quit after he walked out on RAW but they need to find a way to make this right by him. They can’t afford to lose a man of his skill to ROH, NJPW, Impact Wrestling or another promotion who would LOVE to take him in.

It was just last year Cody Rhodes (along with his wife, who worked as a ring announcer) left WWE due to disagreements over his Stardust Persona. He felt it was time for him to revert to Cody Rhodes but the creative team ignored him for months. Finally, he left in frustration a few weeks after his father Dusty Rhodes passed away. His older brother Dustin Rhodes (Goldust) is still with WWE.

Cody has been THRIVING since going to the indie circuit and reinforces the strong case hard work, dedication and loyalty to WWE isn’t always rewarded. Especially due to the favoritism of some Superstars over others.

 

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Let’s move on to RAW-related stuff from last week:

  • Unsurprisingly, The Shield officially reunited last week. Weather it’s long term or short-term, it will be fun to watch them together for now. As a reminder Ambrose and Rollins are the RAW Tag Team Champs while Reigns is clearly being set up to win the Intercontinental Championship from The Miz.
  • Another week without the Universal Champion making an appearance. I get it now why some people said Brock Lesnar is holding WWE hostage a few years ago: He negotiated a massive contract extension and can basically make appearances when he feels like it. Of course, there were the longtime part-timers for years like ‘Taker and Kane. The difference is Lesnar doesn’t like selling matches and putting people over unless he has something to gain from it personally. This was likely why Lesnar lost the title at Wrestlemania 31 in a Triple Threat Match without being pinned. He doesn’t take clean losses unless he will be compensated in some way. This was why his losses to Goldberg at Survivor Series and the Royal were “allowed” plus they’re actually friends in real life.
  • So we know Emma will be Asuka’s first opponent on the main roster. The timing couldn’t be better since almost all of the new talent introduced on WWE are themselves NXT Alumni. Kairi Sane, who won the Mae Young Classic (and is also Japanese) will likely succeed her as the new face of NXT’s Women’s Division.

 

 

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Now to Smackdown-Related stuff from last week:

 

  • The Usos got emotional coming off their brutal match with The New Day, which went down as one of the best Hell in the Cell Matches in recent memory and the best Tag Team Hell in the Match ever. Just as the Usos declared a truce with The New Day, the other tag teams came out to challenge The Usos. The new Smackdown Tag Team champs tore into all of the other teams except Breezango (‘cuz they’re cool), even taking a very pointed shot at Mojo Rowley of the Hype Bros. A Tag Team Battle Royal was helld to decide who would next challenge the Usos, which Gable and Benjamin won.
  • After failing to win the Tag Team Battle Royal, there was a backstage promo in which a full Heel turn by the Hype Bros was teased. Rowley’s frustration with their losing streak since Zack Ryder came back from injury a few months back led many to believe they’re gonna split. Now the team Heel turning seems more likely to happen and it would be good since the Usos clearly Face turned on Smackdown last week.
  • Speaking of Tag Teams: Luke Harper and Eric Rowan were re-introduced in a clearly awkward yet interesting promo. They’re thankfully coming back as a Heel Tag Team, which Smackdown sorely needs. Both had forgetable and poorly booked singles runs on separate occasions. The duo needs to prove they can find success without Bray Wyatt and this could be their opportunity to do it as a tag team.
  • Noticably absent from last week’s Smackdown was the WWE Champion, Jinder Mahal. He flew out after Hell in a Cell to resume promtional work in India and yes, this was why he was booked to retain the title. WWE will need to be careful not to overbook Mahal vs. Shinsuke Nakamura with the latter losing. At this point, Nakamura’s momentum is in danger: He’s failed to win the WWE Championship 3 times in a row. Having him feud with Baron Corbin for the U.S. title could help. In exchange, the time is right to have AJ Styles feud with Mahal and help put him over like he did for Corbin.
  • Ziggler and Roode…clearly they’re both a work in progress. Both will be out of either title picture for the rest of the year so…yeah.

 

…As attention shifts to the RAW-Exclusive TLC this Sunday, the cross-brand Survivor Series will be here before we know it ^_^

 

 

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This week makes the case there should be a roster swap after Survivor Series

Hell in a Cell: A Lesson in Brutality

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…Truth be told, It’s been some time since we have seen a quality Hell in a Cell match. At least not since the match between The Undertaker and Edge at Summer Slam 2008. The HIAC matches we’ve seen since then were tame in comparison. Even the one between ‘Taker and Shane ‘O Mac at Wrestlemania 32 fell far below expectations despite Shane’s memorable dive off the top of the cell.

The match involving Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins did offer glimpses of what we may see at this Sunday’s outing: A return to the brutality the WWE Universe has come to expect from a match titled Hell in a Cell.

 

Let’s look at 8 of my personal favorite Hell in the Cell matches up to now:

 

8. Triple H vs. Cactus Jack

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Ah, Mick Foley’s retirement match. It would be a travesty for this to not be mentioned. It was Championship vs. Career as Triple H battled Mick Foley in the match the latter made famous two years earlier. Just like back then, Foley was put through the cage. The difference was his time it was clearly pre-planned.

7. Sasha Banks vs. Charlotte Flair

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Charlotte and Sasha made history last year as the first women to compete inside Hell in a Cell with the RAW Women’s Championship on the line. I commented on this last year but the beatdown Sasha took before the match officially started ruined it. You already knew at that point the outcome had been decided. Charlotte was a Heel but I agree with the critics she could have won without the pre-emptive attack.

The reason this made the list is simply because it opened the door to more HIAC matches involving the Women’s Division.

6. Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins

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Dean Ambrose had me believing we may see a return to the brutality that has been absent from the now HIAC matches for almost 10 years now. This match took place a few months after The Shield broke up. Ambrose channeled his inner Mick Foley and put on a classic in this battle against The future King Slayer.

 

5. The Undertaker vs. Edge

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Ah, the first of 4 matches on this list featuring The Undertaker ^_^

This was a grudge match made in hell between The Rated-R Superstar and The Phenom who made the match famous. The Undertaker gave Edge a personal lesson in pain after the match was over: After winning the match, he chokeslammed Edge off a ladder through the ring straight into hell.

4. Triple H vs. Shawn Michaels

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…I only just watched this match for the first time on WWE Network today. Afrer seeing how brutal it was, I had to put it on this list. Holy hell. This would be higher up if not for the participants involved in the Top 3.

The match lasted almost an hour.

You would have thought both men were trying to outdo their previous HIAC matches with the brutality they inflicted on each other. By the time it was over, both men were laying unconscious in the middle of the ring.

3. Kurt Angle vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Triple H vs. The Undertaker vs. Rikishi vs. The Rock

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This was a star-studded HIAC at Armageddon 2000 for the WWE Championship. The match involved all of the company’s top talent. As you can probably imagine, there was a number of memorable moments from Triple H being Suplexed onto the hood of a car to The Rock overselling The Stunner in the middle of the ring.

The above picture stands as one of the top moments in HIAC history: Hall of Famer Rikishi being pushed off the top of the cell by The Undertaker into the back of a flatbed truck filled with wood chips. ‘Taker DID warn Rikishi if he wasn’t careful, he’d make him famous.

Kurt Angle retained the title by taking advantage of some confusion in the ring.

2. Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker

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Ah, the very first Hell in a Cell match.

Tomorrow makes it 20 years to the day The Undertaker and Shawn Michaels stepped foot inside what would come to be known as The Devil’s Playground for the first time. The only thing more shocking than the horrors The Deadman inflicted on HBK was the Kane’s shocking first appearance in WWE.

‘Taker literally did everything he could think of to HBK from throwing him around like a rag doll to using him as a human battering ram against the side of the cell. He even made him fall off the side of the cell and crash into the announcer’s table. Despite the brutality, it’s agree the abuse he took in his HIAC match with Triple H 7 years later was far worse: At least HBK was able to leave the ring.

Even so, there is a reason this is #2…

1. Mankind vs. The Undertaker

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…There will never be a match like this again. EVER.

There is Hell in a Cell and then there is The 1998 Hell in a Cell match between The Undertaker and Mankind at King of the Ring. Do yourself a favor: Watch the full match on WWE Network if you’ve never seen it.

Let me give you a bit of background info on this legendary match: Prior to the start of the match, ‘Taker had concerns about competing with a nagging foot injury. The match starting on top of the cage was Mick Foley’s idea. Little did they know when they were both up there, this match would cement their place in Wrestling History.

When Foley is thrown into the announcer’s table, he breaks his left arm and fractures bones in his spine. ‘Taker would later say he was legit concerned since they both knew Foley would have to carry the match since he was competing with an injury. Despite that, Foley would refuse medical treatment and continue the match. Unlike Foley’s match with Triple H, the fall through the cell was not planned. Foley blacked out for 2 minutes from the impact of hitting the ring. It’s said later Foley suffered a ruptured spleen and a concussion from the second fall.

Since the second fall was a legit freak accident, ‘Taker’s shock seeing Foley hit the ring below was legit. With things now gone to hell–pun intended–you’d think things couldn’t get any more over the top. But it did: Foley introduced THUMBTACKS. Then he was dropped and chokeslammed on a bed of them. TWICE. You literally have to see it to believe it.

…Never before and never again.

The only thing even more crazy: Both of them ran interference with the match that followed involving Kane and Stone Cold Steve Austin. Unbelievable given Foley was legit hurt and hurt bad.

…I left this out until now but what made the top 2 matches so memorable was Jim Ross calling the matches.

A few matches worth getting an honorable mention:

  • Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker: Their first Hell in a Cell match in 2002 had originally been booked for ‘Taker to win but since ‘Taker had a broken wrist, he had to take it as a loss to put Lesnar Over.
  • Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker: Their second, more recent Hell in a Cell match in 2015 had all the makings of a classic. It packed the grudge factor like their first HIAC match only both men were healthy. The Beast took The Undertaker to Suplex City, ending the rivalry in convincing fashion.
  • Mankind vs. Kane: This 1998 match is underrated since it was the only HIAC Match that took place during RAW. It was also Kane’s first venture in HIAC in which he destroyed his then tag team partner Mankind.
  • Triple H vs. Kevin Nash: Holy hell, you’d have thought Triple H was legit trying to kill Kevin Nash. It took everyything The Game had to put his best friend down for good.
  • Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan: The only reason this gets an honorable mention is because of how it ended: After Daniel Bryan punts Triple H out of the ring, Special Guest Referee Shawn Michael drops D-Bry with Sweet Chin Music, allowing The Viper to win the match and the vacated WWE Championship.

I have my fingers crossed Shane vs. KO delivers on the brutality it’s being built to be. We will find out for sure this Sunday.

 

Hell in a Cell: A Lesson in Brutality

Tonight’s RAW makes it obvious: The Hounds of Justice will Reunite!

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Come on, we all know WWE was just waiting for the crowd to get behind Reigns again. It took Reigns being put over by John Cena at No Mercy last week but now things are set and primed. In comparison, Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins had a more straightforward path to this point:

 

  • Dean Ambrose was the only one of the three who remained a babyface after The Shield split up back in 2014. He is also the only one of the three who didn’t miss time de to injury (Rollins) or suspension (Reigns).  Ambrose teamed with Reigns at first during their feud with Rollins and The Authority through the rest of 2014 before he went solo. He would be involved in the Ladder Match at Wrestlemania 31 (which Daniel Bryan won) for the Intercontinental Championship but would win the title himself later that year. Ambrose would win the Money in the Bank briefcase and cash it in on the same night to become the WWE Champion. He would retain the title before being sent to Smackdown after the brand split later that year. Ambrose, alongside AJ Styles would carry the Blue Brand untii Ambrose was sent to RAW with the Intercontinental Championship earlier this year. Ambrose recently made up with Seth Rollins and the two are now the current RAW Tag Team Champions.
  • Seth Rollins Heel turned after he turned on Ambrose and Rollins, He became the first superstar to be WWE Champion and U.S. Champion at the same time after beating John Cena for the latter title in 2015. He would later defend both championships in the same night a month later, also a first. Rollins was forced to vacate the WWE Championship after suffering a devastating knee injury that sidelined him for 9 months. When he came back, his benefactor–Triple H–turned on him and gave the new Universal Championship to Kevin Owens. This also marked the beginnig of his Face Turn. Brock Lesnar winning the Universal Tile effectively took him out of the title picture for the forseeable future. So, WWE piulled the trigger on having him make amends with Ambrose. The two are now the current RAW Tag Team Champions.

 

…As of this week’s episode of RAW, The Shield is officially back together. All 3 men became WWE Champions after they split. Reigns won gold 3 times, Rollins twice and Ambrose twice, having quite the impressive run on Smackdown Live. On one night, all 3 of them was the WWE Champion: Reigns went in Champion, Rollins won the title and then Ambrose won the title from Rollins by cashing in the Money in the Bank briefcase. It was quite the night!

We know the reformed Shield will have their sights set on The Miz, Sheamus and Cesaro going into TLC. Beyond that, we could see The more experienced Shield cut a path of destruction through the RAW roster leading into the Royal Rumble.

 

 

 

Tonight’s RAW makes it obvious: The Hounds of Justice will Reunite!

The WWE Universe gives John Cena a sendoff at No Mercy

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He wouldn’t outright say it despite breaking character during RAW Talk but John Cena is now clearly at peace with himself and has accepted Roman Reigns as the new top guy. Make no mistake, this was the end of John Cena’s career as a full-time Superstar. The difference is unlike The Rock, Cena’s roots with WWE are deep and he can come back at any time at the drop of a hat.

Weather you liked him or hated him, at least we will get from John Cena what we were denied from Stone Cold Steve Austin due to what ended up being a career-shortening neck injury: Future matches with new talent down the road. Many people still talk about how many dream matches we were denied over the last 15 years involving Austin 3:16 because the neck injury he suffered at the beginning of The Attitude Era shortened his career. Old Stone Cold would have what ended up being his final match against The Rock at Wrestlemania in 2000.

John Cena would make his debut just three years later. All we can do is talk about what could have been if Austin had been allowed to have 4 to 8 more years. The Super Cena Era wouldn’t have lasted as long but you can be sure he would have had alot of title wins. Would Brock Lesnar have left for UFC? Yeah, definitely. Would Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair have had their retirement matches against Stone Cold instead of The Undertaker? Probably.

The void left by the end of Austin’s shortened career, Lesnar leaving for UFC, Kurt Angle being released and The Rock leaving for Hollywood–all within the span of about four years actually–would end up being filled by Cena, Randy Orton, Batista and to a lesser extent Kane, Triple H, The Undertaker and Edge. Of those names, Orton is the only one left and shows no signs of going anywhere despite the bad booking.

We already know Cena is now going to focus his attention outside WWE, mostly in movies and TV. He is also engaged to Nikki Bella in addition to the two of them living with Daniel Bryan, Brie Bella and their newborn daughter. I don’t think we will see much of him until he’s booked to win another title. I don’t see that happening anytime soon including Wrestlemania. He will likely skip so the newer talent can have the spotlight, making Wrestlemania 34 the first one to not feature both Cena and The Undertaker on the match card.

 

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The WWE Universe gives John Cena a sendoff at No Mercy

Stephanie McMahon makes her first on-screen appearances since Wrestlemania

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…Let me first say the obvious: Stephanie and Vince have both clearly Face Turned (for now) given the McMahon vs. Owens feud. Vince did a hell of a job as usual selling the shit out of the ass kicking he took from KO (video cued to start at that point):

Pay close attention to Vince the whole time: He’s literally egging KO on.

For those who can’t read lips Vince can be clearly seen saying “Hit me in my face.” at the beginning of the attack. The blood was an unexpected bonus. It may not look like it but KO really did headbutt Vince dead-on, the latter having no time to brace for it. The rest, you can clearly see Vince prettymuch walking him through it. After getting moved to the middle of the ring Vince motions with his body toward the turnbuckle to his left just long enough for KO to know exactly what to do next.

Although she looks pissed, you can faintly hear Steph say “You did a good job Kevin now get out of here.” Clearly she’s had alot of practice doing that (LOL!). Like father like daughter you could say. Steph’s surprise appearance on Smackdown shouldn’t be a surprise given the finale for the Mae Young Classic would happen right after Smackdown. That’s also why Ronda Rousey was in the crowd.

Speaking of:

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Kairi Sane defeated Shayna Baszler to with the inaugural Mae Young Classic. Kairi’s professional experience in the indie scene came into play despie the obvious mismatch she faced in former UFC fighter Baszler, who won all of her previous matches by submission.

It is worth nothing WWE kept this under the radar but Kairi had been signed to a WWE contract prior to the start of the Mae Young Classic. Even if she lost, that wouldn’t have changed. On that note. WWE.com announced overnight Kairi will challenge for the NXT Women’s Championship, which was vacated last week by Asuka, who herself will debut on RAW “soon”. Asuka’s debut will definitely happen after No Mercy but could be before or just after Survivor Series.

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…Make no mistake the Mae Young Classic’s second purpose aside from showcasing talent was recruitment. Including the two finalists, I’m pretty sure WWE will take at least half of the other competators. At least four of them attended the finale as did Ronda Rousey, Bayley, Charlotte and Becky Lynch.

Kairi will likely feud with Ember Moon for the NXT Women’s Championship as the new top draws on NXT going into the Royal Rumble. Baszler, on the other hand…I could see her being sent to Smackdown to help build Charlotte’s match with Rousey. Hell, we could know as soon as next week.

Looking ahead to the 2018 Royal Rumble…

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This pic is from the 2016 Royal Rumble (that’s the Wrestlemania 32 logo in the background) but it raised an interesting question that could now become a reality: What if WWE did a Women’s Royal Rumble at the 2018 Royal Rumble?

They would have just enough women to do it if they bring back some fan favorites from the Mae Young Classic and throw in a surprise entrant or two. Paige making her official return then would be awesome. The winner would become the #1 contender for the championship of the show they’re affiliated with. A “Free Agent” would be able to pick which title holder they want to challenge. I do think the time is right to at least try it in 2018.

Stephanie McMahon makes her first on-screen appearances since Wrestlemania

Asuka confirmed to be going to RAW when she returns from injury; Ronda Rousey vs. Charlotte being set up

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…Boy, WWE sure didn’t keep us waiting on this bit of news: It was announced during tonight’s episode of RAW that the former Undefeated NXT Champion will debut on Raw “soon”. They left this off live programming but Asuka is recovering from wear and tear currently but will likely make her debut in a few weeks.

My guess is they will wait until after No Mercy and Hell in a Cell. Assuming she debuts as a Face, Nia Jaxx will lilely walk out of the RAW-exclusive No Mercy with the Women’s Championship.

Why?

Because of this matchup being built by WWE.com:

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…I think we can assume the match WILL happen and likely soon. WWE wouldn’t “tease” this themselves unless they know 100% they can or already got Rousey to commit to an actual match.

A few sources reported last week Rousey has been working out with The Brian Kendrick in recent weeks in preperation for her eventual WWE debut. Let us not also forget Ric Flair revealed in a recent interview (before he was hospitalized) he would like to see Rousey fight his daughter. Looks like it’s gonna happen. My guess is the match will likely happen at Survivor Series. That makes the most sense. It could happen at the Smackdown-exclusive Hell in a Cell PPV but they’ll likely want to use a few weeks to build the match.

The obvious question then becomes how do they use Ronda until her match? She would be a HUGE draw on Smackdown even just building her match with Charlotte. It would easily be a main event match as well because of Rousey being involved. Charlotte would obviously Heel turn for the match (she’s currently a Face) opposite Babyface Rousey.

Both the MMA and Wrestling worlds are anxiously awaiting the day we get to see Rousey step into the Squared Circle and dominate once again. Her MMA career is prettymuch done but a WWE run would make her relevant again. That’s what happened to Brock Lesnar when he went to UFC. When he returned to WWE 8 years later, he only had to say jump and Vince would ask “How high?” Rousey can easly have that same kind of pull in WWE.

Plus we all know it’s very likely we’ll see Rousey vs. Stephanie at Wrestlemania 34 next year.

 

Asuka confirmed to be going to RAW when she returns from injury; Ronda Rousey vs. Charlotte being set up

Awkward promo involving Charlotte Flair and Ronda Rousey highlights the need for change in the Women’s Division

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I’m just going to assume most of you are familiar with or have seen the promo that nearly broke Twitter over the weekend:

 

…The obvious problem being how awkward and stiff RAW’s Bayley and Smackdown’s Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair looked during the promo, which sucks given their suprise appearance earlier inside the area. Thankfully, they didn’t say anything and quietly walked away. No doubt they all realized they botched the promo to hell. A do-over will be necessary and hopefully sooner than later.

Bayley, Charlotte, Becky Lynch and the absent Sasha Banks made up The Four Horsewomen of NXT. They were main draws not just for NXT’s women’s division but NXT itself. All four superstars have gone on to have multiple title runs since moving to RAW and Smackdown over the last two years, Bayley coming to the main roster before the brand split was announced last year. Charlotte would become the inaugural RAW Women’s Champion, retiring the Divas Championship at the same time at Wrestlemania 32. She would go on to have two more title runs before being moved to Smackdown earlier this year. Sasha Banks famously debuted on the main roster while still the NXT Women’s Champion.

Speaking of Sasha and titles, the reason she was absent from the above promo is because she is involved in an ongoing feud with Alexa Bliss for the RAW Women’s Championship. I agree with many folks who say Sasha will likely be pulled out of the title picture to join Charlotte, Becky and Bayley to complete The Four Horsewomen.

UFC’s verison is made up of Rousey, Jessamyn Duke, Marina Shafir and Mae Young Classic participant Shayna Baszler. It goes without saying there is legit interest by both sides for Rousey to make the jump to WWE. Anyone she brings with her would be a cool bonus for WWE as well.

The question to ask is where should she start? Her in-ring skills are without question. The real questions would be around her mic skills. Some time in NXT could help her build confidence in that area but WWE could gamble on her name recognition and just put her on the main roster.

Let’s take a moment and revisit Rousey’s Wrestlemania 31 promo:

…Rousey throwing Triple H out the ring fueled speculation we may see the return of mixed gender singles matches. The business in general–not just WWE–dances around this, not willing to do anything further than mixed tag matches involving a male wrestler and switching so opposite-gender wrestlers don’t compete.

Lita and Chyna both won the Intercontinental Championship during their WWE careers, a male-exclusive title. Former WWE superstar Karma was a surprise entrant in the 2013 Royal Rumble, eliminating Dolph Ziggler during the match. Nothing like that’s happened since.

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…Back to the promo though. Many analysts believe the promo was intended to focus on just Charlotte and Rousey and it can definitely be marketed that way. Oh, let’s not kid outselves here: Survivor Series, which will be cross-brand happens November 17. If they wanted to make it a 4 on 4 match they would need to start building it after No Mercy (RAW-exclusive PPV) and Hell in a Cell (Smackdown-exclusive PPV).

The obvious drawback to this is for Sasha, Charlotte, Bayley and Becky they would need to be pulled out of existing feuds to help build the match. They don’t necessarily need to all be on the same show: They could just have Rousey and the others make cameos on both RAW and Smackdown to help build the match. A singles match between just Charlotte and Rousey would be easier to make happen and in less time, though.

Smackdown’s Women’s Division has taken a hit with Charlotte and Becky both out of the picture. Mostly because of the timing. Carmella teasing her eventual cash-in will only hold interest for so long. Other than her there’s Natalya (Current Smackdown Women’s Champion), Naomi and Tamina, the last of which is being paired with Lana to try rebooting their characters.

On RAW, Bayley is legit injured (shoulder) and weather or not she’ll be healthy and ready for Survior Series would be a big question. Take out Sasha and that leaves Alexia Bliss (Current RAW Women’s Champion), Nia Jaxx, Emma and Mickie James. Jaxx is clearly being positioned to win the title, parelleling fellow RAW superstar Braun Strowman.

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…As was reported, Asuka relinquished the NXT Women’s Championship after she defeated Ember Moon at NXT Takeover due to a collarbone injury she’d been dealing with for some time. It was announced during her sendoff this week on NXT that Asuka will debut on RAW or Smackdown once she recovers and the wait might not be too long. We could see her on the main roster as early as around Survivor Series in November or as late as around January’s Royal Rumble.

Either way there is only one Asuka.

NXT’s only undefeated superstar is beyond Goldberg-level over with the crowds. The international superstar is the most Over Asian Superstar in WWE history and I’m talking BEFORE she was signed to NXT two years ago. Known as Kana in other promotions, her real name is Kanako Urai and she is the biggest Asian Superstar in WWE History. Nevermind the plot armor that kept her undefeated in NXT, she is a legit in-ring performer.

Anywho, Some analysts say Asuka being undefeated during her NXT run hurt her character and NXT’s Women’s Division. Can’t say I can agree with that given most of the talent she feuded with over the last 2 years is now on the main roster. According to insider sources, Triple H reportedly asked Vince McMahon to keep Asuka on NXT, who’d reportedly been on Vince’s short list to be introduced during the Roster Shakeup after Wrestlemania earlier this year.

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Regardless of where Asuka goes, where she doesn’t go will need a new face of equal or greater value in their women’s division. If not Rousey then Ember Moon, who she defeated in her final NXT match to retain the title. Moon will likely get the title run she was denied very soon on NXT on that note.

In the meantime, WWE should feel the pressure to bring in both Asuka and Rousy as soon as possible. Rousey more so given we already know Asuka’s coming. With Rousey, we need to know she is definitely coming and the promos need to start picking up ^_^

Awkward promo involving Charlotte Flair and Ronda Rousey highlights the need for change in the Women’s Division