Tag Archives: WWE

Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic 2016 Part One

As of the episode of NXT which aired on October 12th, we’re half way through the first round of the second-ever (annual, maybe?) Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. This seems as good a time as any to look back at what we’ve seen so far.

The first match of the tournament saw the relatively new Authors of Pain (managed by WWE Hall of Famer and fellow Minnesotan Paul Ellering) against the Bollywood Boys in their debut on NXT TV. Predictably, the Authors of Pain won.

Later in that same episode we saw the NXT tag team champions The Revival take on the team of Andrade “Cien” Almaden and Cedric Alexander. The Revival took part in the first tournament last year and have since gone on to become the first ever two time NXT tag team champions, whereas their opponents are still pretty new to the promotion and had never tagged together before. The Revival won, which surprised me as I didn’t think they’d want the champions to progress all that far in the tournament since they don’t really have anything to gain by it. More interesting, after the match Andrade Almas attacked Cedrick Alexander in an apparent heel turn.

The next week (the episode which aired last night), we saw Glorious 10, a pairing of Tye Dillinger and Bobby Roode a lot of people were excited for take on the debuting SAnitY. I’m not familiar with any of the members (there are four of them) of this new team, but the announcers made it seem as though someone with more knowledge of wrestlers outside of WWE would know who they are. Right from the start, SAnitY was brutal and just destroyed Tye Dillinger. When he sought help from his partner, Bobby Roode walked away, no doubt setting up a feud between them which should be entertaining to see play out. SAnitY got the win.

Finally, we saw TM61 versus Riddick Moss and Tito Sabbatelli, who were both making their NXT TV debut (though I saw them both perform at a recent NXT Live event.) The match went on longer than I would have expected and neither of the new guys were especially impressive. TM61 won the match.

To summarize, as of now we have the Authors of Pain, The Revival, SAnitY, and TM61 progressing to round two. There are still four matches left in the first round and they will be airing over the next couple of weeks. Of those, I’m particularly looking forward to No Way Jose and Rich Swan teaming up against Tony Nese and Drew Gulack.

What do you think of this year’s Classic so far? Did any of the matches go differently than you expected? What match are you most looking forward to? Let me know in the comments.

NXT 06/15/2016

After NXT Takeover The End, they’re calling this a new beginning for NXT. I hope this episode was just setting things up and not a sign of what we can expect in the future from NXT.

The show openes with a tag team match between the new Authors of Pain pain and two people they didn’t even bother introduce. The Authors of Pain are the team who attacked American Alpha at Takeover and are managed by WWE Hall of Famer Paul Ellering.

The match showed this new team to pretty much be straight brawlers and that took them to victory, if there was ever any doubt. I really hate this meaningless sort of match.

This annoyed me. If the Authors of Pain weren’t going to launch straight into a feud with American Alpha, there was no reason to attack them at Takeover. It would have made more sense to go after The Revival.

After that, Andrade “Cien” Almas and Tye Dillinger exchanged words in the back and the Authors of Pain ignored a request for an interview.

Up next was a women’s division match with Carmella, obnoxious as ever, against Tessa Blanchard, who is still pretty new and apparently just a jobber so far.

The match was pretty standard fare, with Tessa Blanchard showing more personality than I expected going in. Carmella showed a lot of flash in the ring and eventually won by submission, then danced in celebration probably just to annoy me, personally.

After that was a statement from Samoa Joe. It was recorded last week, after retaining the title. He was just reaffirming that he’s champion, really.

Blake and Murphy were interviewed backstage next. Apparently they’re back together. It seemed like there was some friction between the two but they tried to blame it on Alexa Bliss and move on. Their match against TM61 was up next. At least it wasn’t another pointless match.

Solid teamwork and a decent showing from TM61, while Blake and Murphy were as dull as ever. Obviously just a match to try to get TM61 over. Yawn.

After that, there was a statement from The Revival about being tag champions. My interest in this episode began to weaken even further.

Next was a recap and interview with Bayley backstage, followed by the match promised earlier between Tye Dillinger and Andrade Almas. That was a rematch from last week’s Takeover.

These two guys put on an entertaining show again, just like at Takeover. Almas dominated and,, eventually scored a pin fall for the victory.,

Up next we got to hear from Finn Balor, one week after his failure to reclaim the NXT title. The audience was behind him all through, even chanting, “please don’t go.” When he started asking what’s next for Finn Balor, he was interrupted by Shinsuke Nakamura. They got along well and Nakamura challenged Balor to a match.

Recap
– Authors of Pain defeated an unidentified tag team. 
– Carmella defeated Tessa Blanchard. 
– TM61 defeated Blake and Murphy. 
– Andrade “Cien” Almas defeated Tye Dillinger. (Rematch from NXT Takeover The End.)

What interest I had in Authors of Pain waned with this episode as they failed to do much of anything with them. Paul Ellering makes me want to like them, if only because he’s a Hall of Famer from my home state and had a hand in the Legion of Doom back in the day.

I think the NXT women’s division is going to go through a rough patch as they start trying to elevate some of the newer talent.

The Finn Balor versus Shinsuke Nakamura match is going to be great and a suitable send off for Balor. (Balor has already been spotted at at least one main roster event, likely discussing with Creative how he’s going to come up.)

As always, feel free to hit me up on social media if you’ve got a bone to pick or want to talk about something. You’re also welcome to respond in the comments here. You can join in the global conversation on social media using the hashtag #WWENXT or, often, just #NXT.

NXT Recap 06/01/2016

What follows is a recap of the episode of WWE NXT which aired on Wednesday, June 1st, 2016. This is my first time writing one of these and my also be my last, I can’t say for sure yet. I just decided it had been too long since I had posted to this blog and I needed to flex my writing muscles a bit. After reading, let me know in the comments section if you think I should make this a regular thing.

Before getting to the breakdown, I have a single comment: The fuck was Corey Graves wearing?

The episode opens with The Revival. They came down to the ring in regular clothes and did the usual heel opening thing. They focused mostly on how they’re the best and threatening American Alpha, who they have a tag title match against at Takeover The End next week.

Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa mercifully interrupted a promo going on longer than necessary when not much was being said. They stuck up for American Alpha a bit but mostly boasted about how they’re on the way up and the time of The Revival is passed. Standard stuff.

The segment ended with The Revival getting kicked out of the ring (literally) and a match was made. That match confirmed as the night’s main event during the first match.

Before moving on to the first match, there was a brief bit in the back with Shinsuke Nakamura. He didn’t say anything important but I did notice his English communication skills have improved drastically since he started on NXT. That’s probably the only thing keeping him from the main roster at the moment.

The first match of the night was Tye Dillinger versus Buddy Murphy. That’s right, it’s Buddy Murphy now, not just Murphy. He entered alone, which will probably be the norm now as it appears his tag team is done for and Alexa Bliss abandoned them both. He still entered with the same video showing all three of their names, though.

It was strange to me, seeing Murphy in a solo match. I’ve only ever seen him as part of Blake and Murphy. It wasn’t bad or unwelcome, just different.

It was a solid, technical match right from the start. The work remained good all the way through, though it was nothing especially exciting. Dillinger came through with the victory.

I get the feeling they’re starting to give him a push, but I still can’t really get behind Dillinger. I’m not sure what it is.

Next, Corey Graves interviewed Finn Balor and Samoa Joe, who will be facing each other in a cage match for the NXT title next week at Takeover The End.

I think Finn has gotten better at this sort of thing since I started watching NXT back in August. At that time, he was pretty awful whenever he had to talk. Joe seemed oddly happy, at least at first. This sort of thing is not the strong suit for either of these guys.

Finn sort of rewrote history about how Joe got as far as he has. It went from a respect to treating him like a whiny child. The interview otherwise played up their past friendship and referenced them teaming together in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic.

Apparently, Joe has been in cage matches before but Finn hasn’t. I don’t expect that really matters at all, but they played it like that gives Joe an advantage. I half expect to see Finn fly from the top of the cage next week.

I think Finn will lose their match and it will lead to him getting called up to the main roster, maybe joining The Club. It would be following a similar path to Kevin Owens.

The second match of the night was Elias Samson versus Austin Aries. I don’t really like Samson, and not in a heel kind of way. I think his character is lame and the commentators get even worse whenever he’s in the ring. They pretty much always say the same stupid things. He also reminds me of Jason Mantzoukas, for whatever reason.

I don’t feel much more positive about Aries, but I don’t really know him yet. I feel like they’ve been leaning too much on his fame outside of WWE/NXT, which I know nothing about. And I can’t be alone in that.

Early on, Aries made Samson look like a chump with an arm bar he wouldn’t let go of and things continued in much the same way. It was obvious all the way through how much Aries outclasses Samson as an actual wrestler.

In the end, Samson tapped out, giving Aries the win.

The main event was the Tommaso Ciampa and Johnny Gargano versus The Revival match promised at the show’s start.

Neither of these teams get me excited, but they’re both good at what they do. I’ve even read rumors they may both be moving to the main roster when the brand split happens next month. I don’t know how reliable the source is, so we’ll just have to wait and see. The Revival, of course, has a tag title match at Takeover The End next week. If they win that, they’d be stuck on NXT for a while longer. I don’t particularly want them to win, but I’d much rather see American Alpha move up over them.

This was one of those matches where my attention starts to drift.

Dawson delivered a superplex to Gargano, but Gargano roled it into a small package and stole a pin. The Revival kept the fight going after the match, which is fitting for them, but American Alpha intervened.

The show wrapped up with a women’s title match contract signing, with Asuka and Nia Jax. It’s nice to see a women’s event in the final slot, even if not a proper match. NXT gets that right. It was also nice to see William Regal actually on the show.

I really like Asuka. I think Nia Jax has a lot of potential but she’s a ways off of realizing it. She’s really bad on a mic but should be a brilliant heel someday.

After some shit talking, Asuka told Jax she talks to much. A brawl ensued, ending with Jax power bombing Asuka.

As always, you can join the global conversation using the hashtag #WWENXT or just #NXT. You can also check out my About Me page to find me on social media, where I’ll gladly talk about wrestling or just about anything else until you’re sick of it.

What To Say On A Monday

In case anyone cared, the Preditors & Editors Readers’ Poll is now closed. It actually has been for a few days. Of course, if you cared, you’d already know that. They haven’t released the official results yet, but I’m pretty sure my Cyberpunk Writers group took the top in the Writers’ Discussion Forums.

We are now less than a week from the premier of the new series of The X-Files and the Royal Rumble. I’m looking forward to both.

Whatever they do with The X-Files, I’m sure it will be at least as good as the last season or two of the original series. Hopefully it’s even better. I like what I’ve seen of the cast they got, beyond the people from the original series. I only wish they’d gotten Robert Patrick back to play Doggett, if only in a bit part, since they have Reyes coming back in some capacity.

Just yesterday, my girlfriend and I finished watching through all of the original X-Files series. It was quite the experience and took us several months. I wish things had gone differently toward the end, but it was clear the show was faltering.

About the Royal Rumble… I’m looking forward to the intercontinental title match probably the most. Dean Ambrose and Kevin Owens are two of my favorites right now and their matches are usually entertaining to watch. Either way that one turns out, I’ll be happy.

As for the Royal Rumble match itself, I’m not sure what to think. Making it a heavyweight title defense kind of screws with things, especially where Wrestlemania is concerned. I’d love to see someone unexpected come out on top, especially Stardust, but that’s not likely to happen. I hope they won’t be so lame as to hand the title to Brock Lesnar when he just came back…or, really, to ever let him have it again. Or be around. Lesnar is awful. The Big Show winning would be really cool. Give him a Royal Rumble win and one last title range as he (apparently) approaches retirement. Maybe have that lead to an I Quit match or something. But, if I had to make a prediction, I’d say Roman Reigns will win to retain his title and that will set in motion a feud between him and Lesnar, which will culminate at the main event of Wrestlemania.

In any case, since the pay per view is less than a week away, I’m sure they’ll do something to make RAW tonight interesting.

In other entertainment news, The Flash and Arrow are back this week. Legends of Tomorrow premiers, too. This is going to be a good week.

Finally, onto writing. That’s probably what people reading this are actually most interested in anyway, right? Well, I’ve mostly been slacking off. I’ve got a story started which I may make into a serial to be posted here, on Watt Pad, or maybe published in Phase 2 Magazine. I won’t make any decision on that until I’ve written quite a bit more of it.

I have an idea for a short piece, probably flash or maybe even just a vignette, if you’re picky. It’s a tribute to Lemmy of Motorhead. I’ll probably throw in a nod to Wayne and Tera Wray Static, too. I’ll probably be giving it to Far Horizons, since that’s where the idea started, but it will probably eventually find its way here.

I’ve been slacking off thus far this month, but serious reading for the 5th issue of Phase 2 Magazine and the first omnibus starts now.

And that’s all for today.

Where I’m At

Not that I have many followers to notice, but I haven’t been posting to this blog very regularly. I have been spending more time at a computer actually getting things done, though, so it’s safe to say you’ll be hearing (or not) more from me in the coming year. I’m not ready to commit to a regular posting schedule or anything, but maybe we’ll get there, too. Writing and publishing, not only a blog but also fiction, can feel like a constant uphill battle with ADHD but I get there.

My main focus at the moment, and what I should really be doing right now, is wrapping up the details for Phase 2 Magazine issue 4. I have stories accepted and mostly just editing and formatting remain. I’m waiting to hear back on contracts from a couple of writers but if they don’t get back to me in time for this issue, they’ll just get bumped to the next or to the first omnibus (releasing early next year.) I’m planning a Wednesday release for the issue, either way.

As for that omnibus, I’m going to aim for a minimum of 50k words. I’m hoping to go closer to 70k, but we’ll see how things work out. It will include all the stories published in the first four issues of Phase 2 Magazine as well as content which will only appear in the omnibus. I might run one of those stories on the Dark Futures website as a bit of a preview. Again, we’ll see. Also about the omnibus, Jason Miller has completed a painting for the cover. You can see it on Deviant Art right here. He seems worried it’s too graphic or potentially offensive. I don’t think he needs to worry about it. What do you think?

As I blogged about before, I’ve still been following Ash vs Evil Dead. I think it’s the best damn thing on TV right now. I’m sad there’s only one episode remaining. Maybe after it’s done and I rewatch it all, I’ll write about my complete thoughts on it.

I’ve also been following the WWE, as I have been since Stephen Amell feuded with Stardust in August. That feud seems to be making a return, too. I’m hoping we’ll see another Amell vs Stardust match of some kind (the last one was a four man tag match) at Royal Rumble next month, though I’ve seen some people predicting they’ll save it for Wrestlemania, since the last one was so popular. If they do that, it would be especially great to see Stephen Amell just in the Royal Rumble match itself. I don’t expect that will happen, and he obviously wouldn’t win, but it would still be fucking awesome.

Also on that note, my girlfriend and I attended WWE Monday Night RAW live at the Target Center in Minneapolis last week. I haven’t even uploaded any photos from it to my personal Facebook page, so I have none to share right now but probably will eventually. The next time the WWE is coming back to Minnesota is March, but that’s an off night WWE Live event, so I don’t think I’ll bother to go. If I’m going to take the night off work and spend the money, I’d like to at least see the big stars. Granted, most of my favorites are closer to mid card, but still.

Anyhow, in bad news, my water heater stopped working a few days ago. Fortunately, my mother lives only about a mile away and I’ve been able to shower there. It’s just inconvenient. Hopefully that will get fixed soon. If you want to help, go buy Dark Futures and Phase 2 stuff from Amazon so my bank account will get a boost at the start of next month!

In better news, I’ve easily written more this month than I have in the preceding several combined. I hope to continue this trend. One of the things written this month was a bit of flash fiction written for a writing contest in the Space Opera: Writers group on Facebook. I may post that here eventually, but it got a little rushed, so it may see another revision first.

I also completed a story which was for an upcoming Writerpunk Press anthology and is a cyberpunk (or probably more specifically post cyberpunk) retelling of Edgar Allan Poe’s The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar. It uses a character I had developed for a WIP (but now possibly put to rest) novella and fits in the cyberpunk setting I’ve been very gradually developing over the past couple of years. I intend to write a lot within that setting. Hopefully I do.

I’m currently working on a story I hope to submit to the Altered States 2 anthology, but I think I got a bit carried away with the outline and it could turn into something longer instead. We’ll just have to wait and see.

And, finally, as always, I’ve been keeping up with the Cyberpunk Writers Facebook group I run. Activity died down a bit around Christmas but it’s starting to come back around.

That’s all I’ve got for now. This has been a general update on me and what I do. Is there anything in particular you’d like me to cover next time? Anything you’d like to discuss that I’ve mentioned here? I’d love to hear from you. We can talk in the comments here or my About Me page will tell you where else you can get a hold of me.