WWE confirms reports of Dean Ambrose leaving in April are true

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Read the statement on WWE.com here.

WWE rarely comments on the contract status of talent but this is the second one they’ve commented on this week (The other being Ronda Rousey). Must be a full moon!

As had first been reported by PWInsider, WWE confirmed in the above statement that Johnathan Good–Dean Ambrose in WWE–opted not to renew his contract with WWE a few months back and he will leave when it expires in late April. The statement also confirmed what I assumed in my earlier post: WWE will welcome him back should he decide to return down the road. Clearly the company holds no ill will toward him personally or professionally so…yeah. WWE also wanted to avoid another Stone Cold or CM Punk situation in which a mega popular superstar walked out on the company (though in Stone Cold’s case, he did return eventually).

WWE doesn’t have a mediator like Jim Ross, who was instrumental in bringing The Texas Rattlesnake back to the fold after his second walkout. Vince admitted as much a few months after CM Punk left. He said if they had one, they might have been able to give him a proper sendoff at least. Same with Cody Rhodes, who left the company due to creative differences two years later.

Now that the news is out, we will have to wait and see if WWE decides to make Dean Ambrose’s contract status a part of his storyline. Now that we know he will be under contract until after Wrestlemania, he could be put on the card as a final sendoff. We’ll have to wait and see.

 

 

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WWE confirms reports of Dean Ambrose leaving in April are true

Rousey vs. Lynch at WM35 set and other updates

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Becky Lynch didn’t wait long to decide who she will challenge at Wrestlemania 35.

Shortly after Ronda Rousey finished her 15-minute title match with Bayley (she won of course), Becky Lynch’s music hit. Obviously. The Man has some unfinished business with Ronnie and more so after she cost Lynch (and Charlotte) the Smackdown Women’s Championship at TLC. Then Ronda Rousey cut her best promo yet. We know Ronda Rousey is stepping away from WWE after Wrestlemania 35 so obviously, Lynch will be booked to win the RAW Women’s Title. All the more reason to see the match when it happens!

Lynch was wearing a knee brace, which she injured in the Women’s Royal Rumble Match and Rousey was taken to the limit by Bayley. Despite that, it was obvious both were half-cocked and ready to fight on the spot. Wrestlemania is 3 months away and that’s plenty of time for both of them to get in good shape for their main event match.

As a reminder: Wrestlemania is April 7!

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John Cena is out for Wrestlemania due to obligations elsewhere. According to a few reports, The Undertaker is not booked for Wrestlemania 35 either. This will be the first time in over 30 years neither The Undertaker OR John Cena will be on the card for Wrestlemania. With AEW getting the attention of several superstars on the roster, WWE is looking to showcase their current talent at the Show of Shows.

 

Speaking of:

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News broke late Tuesday morning that Dean Ambrose WILL be leaving WWE after Wrestlemania 35 when his contract expires. Sources close to The Lunatic Fringe say he has been unhappy with the direction of his character in recent years and he “hates doing hokey shit”. Even out of character, many have called Ambrose a hard read backstage and no one can really tell what he’s thinking.

The Heel turn in October was clearly an effort to reboot his character. The Chronicle episode that covered his rehab and return was clearly an effort to let him be himself as well. Ambrose opted out negotiating a new contract a few months back and told Vince he’s done with WWE and his reasons are not motivated by money. That sounds pretty clear cut to me.

Ambrose was about to do a Shoot after his match with Seth Rollins last night on RAW but was interrupted by Nia Jax and Tamina. It sounded like the promo wasn’t planned and more importantly, Vince wanted to stop him from possibly breaking kayfabe or saying something that shouldn’t be said so publicly. I do think Vince will let Ambrose do a Shoot but last night wasn’t the time. I also think the news of his departure breaking now could be in reaction to what almost happened last night.

It’s pretty likely Ambrose will be written off TV before Wrestlemania 35. Based on the crowd’s reaction to Nia Jax and Ambrose staring each other down in the ring, they could be booked in a match sometime in the next two months. Lately, WWE’s been pretty good about giving fans what they want to see so…yeah.

…They may be married but I doubt Ambrose leaving the company will have any effect on his wife and RAW commentator Rene Young. Clearly she is aware and looking back, her restrained comments when Ambrose Turned makes a bit more sense. She likely knew by then he was planning to leave and didn’t want to say anything that would give that away on the air.

Ambrose has obviously done almost everything there is to do in WWE and had several title runs with several titles, he will always be known as a member of the Shield stable. I do think Vince has come to terms with his departure and would probably welcome him back if he decides he want to return in a few years.

 

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Rousey vs. Lynch at WM35 set and other updates

Dean Ambrose turning Heel was clearly intended for a later time

Image result for WWE Dean Ambrose vs Seth Rollins

Dean Ambrose joins Bobby Lashley, The Bella Twins and (likely Ember Moon soon) as the latest Babyface on RAW to Heel Turn this month.

It’s pretty obvious Ambrose turning Heel was teased for weeks but they weren’t planning to pull the trigger yet. Roman Reigns suddenly being forced to step away from WWE moved up his Heel turn. I wouldn’t be surprised if Vince and Stephanie made the call just before the tag team match. It will likely be explained as Ambrose felt he was forgotten while he was out and felt like the third wheel when he returned.

This coming RAW just got a lot more interesting!

 

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Dean Ambrose turning Heel was clearly intended for a later time

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!

John Cena addresses his critics on 12/27/2016 Talking Smack

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It was obvious during Smackdown Cena had alot more to say than what he did at the beginning of the program. So, he came on Talking Smack (which now starts after 205 Live on WWE Network) to set a few things straight.

In short: He’s far from done.

Weather or not he will tie and then break Ric Flair’s all-time record of 16 title reigns remains to be seen. He’ll get his chance to tie Ric Flair when he faces AJ Styles at the Royal Rumble next month.

Cena didn’t shy away from what fans called the Super Cena Era during his comments. That was that period of time in which Cena racked up most of his title reigns because there was literally no one other than Randy Orton who could work with him long enough to get a decient feud going.

Why?

Because superstars were getting suspended left and right due to PED violations. WWE was forced to aggressively punish superstars who took PEDs after the Chris Benoit incident. Being the only superstar available to carry the company doesn’t automatically make you the best. I don’t know why his critics think he felt that way but the man never did feel that way himself.

It was also during much of that time Lesnar (to UFC), Batista (Hollywood), Goldberg (retired) and Bobby Lashley (TNA) all left. ‘Taker, Kane, Big Show, Mark Henry and Shawn Michaels all stuck around (though HBK would get retired by The Undertaker at Wrestlemania a few years later) but they weren’t used to put other superstars over (because of poor booking).

It’s worth noting Cena pointed out the fact he’s one of several superstars who’ve done acting gigs. The Miz, Dolph Ziggler, Kane, Randy Orton, Dean Ambrose and Triple H have all appeared in movies (though in most of them, they were in movies produced by WWE Studios). Hulk Hogan (Rocky III), The Big Show (Jingle All The Way) and of course The Rock (too many to list) all have hollywood experience.

The problem Cena basically said “I don’t give a fuck” on is he’s getting a pass on putting people over. AJ Syles wasn’t wrong when he broke kayfabe and said Cena does the burying not put others over. Remember: The Rock was brought in to put Cena over at Wrestlemania a few years back. Twice. That should tell you all you need to know about WWE’s decision to put Cena on Smackdown instead of RAW.

I predict Cena will at least match Flair’s record if not break it in 2017. It’s just a matter of time at this point. He tells Vince McMahon to jump and the response is “How high?” There are only 6 other superstars who can basically do whatever they want: Lesnar, ‘Taker, Kane, Big Show, Mark Henry and of course, Triple H.

The only thing he said that I disagreed with was when he said he’s a Underdog now. He’s John Cena. He’s never the underdog. LOL.

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The other big story involved Dean Ambrose and Renee Young, whose relationship became the subject of controversy as of late. As I noted in my previous post, Ambrose and Young are in a relationship. The couple didn’t back down from the potential conflict of interest–her being a reporter and he being a WWE Superstar–as they discussed their feud with The Miz.

Could be interesting as there have been rumors Young has been looking into getting trained for in-ring action like Lana and Maryse recently did. Given all the undue disrespect she’s been getting from basically everyone, it could be real interesting.

John Cena addresses his critics on 12/27/2016 Talking Smack

This week demonstrates why Smackdown shouldn’t be underestimated

Important Note: Meant to post publish this three weeks ago. It’s dated but still relevant. Just read this as if you were reading it on September 14.

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…The AJ/Cena feud being randomly restarted this week aside, I almost got goosebumps when I saw the Ambrose/Cena feud being established.

BRILLIANT!

Ambrose and Styles were both talking some SERIOUS shit to Cena during their promo at the start of Smackdown. Cena vs. Ambrose…we’re talking Wrestlemania 33 right there for the WWE Championship. I think Cena will tie Ric Flair’s record by the end of the year but the record-breaking win should happen at Wrestlemania 33. Flair has already given Cena his blessing to break the record so…yeah.

After Cena, Triple H has 13 title wins (most recently at the beginning of 2016). Triple H has plenty of gas left in the tank to catch up to Cena if he really wanted to. I don’t think he will, though. Rollins, Ambrose and Reigns are all clearly being set up for multiple title reigns: They have 7 title runs between the three of them since The Shield split up.

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Jack Swagger being shipped to Smackdown from RAW was clearly done to replace Alberto Del Rio, who was released by WWE last week. Swagger was immediated positioned to feud with Baron Corbin, which could be interesting. The midcard needs a vet who can help put new talent over and with Swagger there, now the Miz has some help.

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Speaking of The Miz: It’s clear his feud with D-Bry from a few weeks ago is being capitalized on and escalated. This week, it was suggested The Miz’s contract with Smackdown is due to be renegotiated soon. Given his new partnership with new WWE Champion AJ Styles, it goes without saying the IC title stays on Smackdown. The Miz needs someone to feud with since it’s clear the feud with Dolph Ziggler isn’t working. Apollo Crews or Baron Corbin should be pushed to feud with The Miz instead.

If the Miz does go to RAW, the fair question to ask is “who is going to Smackdown”? I’m looking at another vet being sent over. I’m looking at Mark Henry or The Big Show. The Big Show announced he will be retiring after Wrestlemania 33 so it would make better sense for Mark Henry to go to Smackdown.

 

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This week demonstrates why Smackdown shouldn’t be underestimated

No titles change hands at Battleground 2016

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…The WWE Championship will remain with Smackdown. After a battle that lasted nearly 18 minutes, Dean Ambrose (Smackdown) hit Roman Reigns (RAW) with Dirty Deeds to pick up the victory. The question that was at the back of everyone’s minds was weather or not Ambrose and Reigns, who remains close friends after The Shield broke up would hold back on each other. The answer was an umemphatic no when Ambrose and Rollins (RAW) powerbombed Reigns through the Spanish Announcers’ table.

With Ambrose gaving retained the WWE Championship for Smackdown, this means RAW’s new top title should be announced Monday night. This also allows the Rollins/Reigns rivalry to continue right were it left off before the latter’s suspension.

The Miz (Smackdown) and Darren Young’s (RAW) match for the IC Championship ended in a no contest and the Miz retained the title for Smackdown. Rusev (RAW) also defeated Zack Ryder (Smackdown) to retain the US Title for RAW. The Women’s title (Charlotte, RAW) and the Tag Ream titles (The New Day, RAW) were not contested.

This leaves Smackdown with one mid-tier title (IC Title, The Miz) and the WWE Championship (Ambrose) while RAW has one mid-tier title (US Title Rusev), the Women’s Championship (Charlotte), the Tag Team titles (The New Day) and a vacancy in the brand’s yet to be announced top title.

New rivalries are sure to be introduced this week on RAW and Smackdown. You can believe that!

No titles change hands at Battleground 2016