2015 Armbar Express Awards

 

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Ladies and gentlemen, it’s that time of year again. It’s where we reflect on everything that went right or wrong in the world of professional wrestling during the year. We reward excellence and we condemn ignorance. We decide once and for all which stars are worthy as it is time for the 2015 Armbar Express… AWARDS!

So we’ve made our list, we checked it twice. It’s time to see which wrestling personalities raked in the rewards for a solid year and which wrestlers get the short end of the stick. Let’s kick things off with…

 

TV Show Of The Year

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This is a new one for us in the awards. We celebrate just which wrestling promotion put on the best TV show of the year and our nominations are…

  • Monday Night RAW (WWE) – As it much as it can drive a man insane, I’ll give credit to the writers for being able to write and dish out a three hour wrestling show every week. A lot of RAWs have been well below par but there’s been a few hidden gems that almost makes up for that.
  • NXT (WWE) – The developmental territory goes from strength to strength as NXT has really had the world talking with some incredible talent on display. We’ve had some great matches, some great storylines and great special events to make all the episodes seem worth it.
  • Lucha Underground (Lucha Underground) – Lucha Underground is an incredible alternative from WWE which has really made a name for itself. Every episode is unmissable as it delivered with its first season in 2015. Considering the success of season one, season two in 2016 can be a huge success.

The winner… is Lucha Underground.

More than any other wrestling show from any other promotion, Lucha Underground knows what type of product they are putting on every week. It is a television show which is really what a lot of promotions fail to remember. It might upset a lot of NXT fans for it to lose out to Lucha Underground, but NXT is a show you could miss and it wouldn’t hugely effect your knowledge of events. Lucha Underground has made it’s a product a show you have to see every week. Every little detail is vital as you are gearing up for a huge episode with major implications. The segments and non-wrestling parts of the show are put together very well with more time given to wrestling to really tell the story for them. It’s the perfect balance which creates a incredible product at the end. If you’re not watching Lucha Underground, you’re missing out on an unique opportunity.

 

Feud/Rivalry Of The Year

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Storytelling is a huge aspect of wrestling and more intense rivalries are, the better. Our nominations are…

  • Kevin Owens vs John Cena – This feud made for compelling television on RAW which made it a huge incentive for people to watch the flagship show. Kevin Owens debuted in an emphatic way, attacking John Cena on RAW and then cleanly beating him at Elimination Chamber. Cena levelled things up at Money In The Bank until Cena settled the score with Owens at Battleground. While the ending with Cena winning the feud still winds me up to this day, you can’t deny that there were some great moments that accompanied this feud and really make it stand out.
  • Brock Lesnar vs Undertaker – Fifteen months after the events of Wrestlemania XXX, the Dead Man finally got around to getting his revenge on the man that conquered the streak. After costing him the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Battleground, Undertaker began an incredible intense and powerful feud with Brock Lesnar which was really must-see television. Most notable during this feud was the post-Battleground brawl between Undertaker and Brock Lesnar which was arguably one of the greatest moments of RAW all year. Along with getting the Undertaker booed for the first time in a decade, this feud provided a whole new dynamic which really developed the characters of both men and it was not like this was a traditional face vs heel rivalry. These just two men that wanted to murder each other! The matches at Summerslam and Hell in a Cell also hugely surpassed my expectations too!
  • Fenix vs Mil Muetrues – This was one of the rare times where a romance angle was actually done right and it shockingly happened at a promotion that is not as heavy on “sports entertainment” than WWE. It made stars out of Fenix and Mil with great matches including their Grave Consequences match which we’ll get to later. Catrina’s role in the storyline was also well played.
  • Sasha Banks vs Bayley – There’s been a number of great NXT programs this year but Bayley and Sasha Banks gave us a rivalry which was truly phenomenal. This was story-telling at it’s simplest and finest and Sasha was the perfect foil for Bayley, as the hugger hoped to finally win the NXT Women’s Championship. Two great matches at NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn and Respect showed why NXT’s women were leagues ahead of WWE’s divas.

The winner… is Brock Lesnar vs Undertaker.

To me, the intensity of Brock vs Taker was what really made it stand out. I appreciate the clear face-heel dynamic of Bayley and Sasha, I liked the way the romance angle with Fenix and Mil was presented and I loved the matches between Owens and Cena. However, what separated Brock and Taker from the rest was their ability to be unique. There’s no face and no heel. There’s just two badasses just beating the crap out of each other which gave the whole thing such a great atmosphere and what really made Brock Lesnar must-see television this year!

 

Tag Team Of The Year

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There’s been a number of teams that have really impressed this year and let’s celebrate these tremendous tag teams as the nominations are…

  • The New Day – What can be said about the New Day other than they took the ball and they ran so far with it that it’s incredible to think that they were getting booed at the start of the year. Now, they are just the most entertaining tag team in wrestling today and they’ve got a lot of diversity between the three of them in terms of movesets which works tremendously in the tag team scenario.
  • Lucha Dragons – This team has been very fun to watch in the ring and have been a welcome addition to the main roster. Sin Cara’s obviously been on the main roster before but Kalisto is a newcomer that has really shined in the time that he’s given. Hopeful we can see these two with a tag title run.
  • Jason Jordan and Chad Gable – A true stand out team in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic, these two just worked so well together as a tag team. The weakness of one man was filled by the other as they put on some incredible matches against the likes of Baron Corbin and Rhyno. Many NXT fans were disappointed that the duo never won the tournament but 2016 may end up being their year.
  • Cesaro and Tyson Kidd – I was originally going to leave this team out of this award considering they were only together for around six months until Tyson Kidd went down with an injury. However, the duo put together some great matches as a duo with the two styles just complimented each other beautifully. Fact.

The winner is… the New Day!

Kofi, Big E and Xaiver have done tremendous work as a trio and it might be unfair to give them award considering they’re more of a stable then a tag team. However, you can’t deny that they’ve given the tag team division a boost as a whole and they are finally getting the results that the three of them deserve.

 

PPV Of The Year

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The WWE Network might have actually been worth subscribing to this year with a number of top quality PPVs to acknowledge. The nominations are…

  • Wrestlemania 31 – In what is usually a given in terms of top PPVs of the year, Wrestlemania 31 sure didn’t disappoint. Rarely has a Wrestlemania been as well timed as this year’s event. With the exception of the Rock/Rousey/HHH/Stephanie angle (which I thought went too long) all the matches/segments were given enough time to truly stand out in it’s own right. While it was not like Wrestlemania 28 where all the time went to the three big matches and it was not like any of the matches from this card were match of the year candidates, it featured some darn great matches nevertheless. From Sting vs Triple H to Brock Lesnar taking Roman Reigns to Suplex City, there was little wrong with this year’s edition of Wrestlemania.
  • Summerslam – August 22nd, August 23rd and August 24th made for a great three days for WWE and the feature presentation was the four hour long Summerslam. The top matches including a great WWE World title match with Seth Rollins defending against John Cena as well as the long-awaited rematch between Undertaker and Brock Lesnar which really surpassed my expectations.
  • Hell in a Cell – I have to give Hell in a Cell a thumbs up for a number of reasons. Both Hell in a Cell matches delivered in their own right, (which is of course a big part of the PPV itself) and there were a number of surprises including the return of Alberto Del Rio.
  • Night of Champions – This was another good PPV for WWE in the autumn of 2015, with Seth Rollins being the focal point and main reason for it’s success! Seth Rollins put on two great matches in a row with John Cena and Sting, proving that he indeed was the man in WWE around this time. There were other great aspects of the show as well including the returning of Chris Jericho which made for a worthwhile event.

The winner is… Wrestlemania 31.

This was another solid Wrestlemania for WWE as whoever was responsible for the timing of the show was right on the money. That event will legitimately go down as one of the best Wrestlemanias the company have ever produced.

 

Worst Match Of The Year

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Not all awards are for the greater good. This award celebrates the worst matches put together in 2015. The nominations are…

  • Sheamus vs Ryback vs Dolph Ziggler vs Mark Henry vs R-Truth vs King Barrett in an Elimination Chamber match for the Intercontinental Championhship (WWE) – Maybe WWE should have given Elimination Chamber a rest this year because this chamber match really wasn’t up to par. As soon as Mark Henry’s chamber pod was broken, the match seemed to completely fall apart to such agree that it was amazing how all of these men (EACH with at least ten years experience wrestling in the “biggest” wrestling promotion in the world) couldn’t put this match back on track. When Sheamus’ chamber pod got stuck, all of these men stood around not knowing what to do as Ziggler was calling spots for everyone. It was not a great return for the Elimination Chamber.
  • 2015 Royal Rumble Match (WWE) – WWE’s streak of failing Royal Rumble matches continued with this atrocity which ended up with Roman Reigns standing tall. It’s not even the fact that Roman won it. It’s the fact that the match itself was put together in such a miserable fashion that it’s no wonder that Roman was booed out of the building. Those fans weren’t booing Roman Reigns. They were booing Roman Reigns having to conquer two twenty year veterans that had no business being on par with the current crop of young talent as WWE struggle to develop new stars.
  • Los Villanos vs Los Psycho Circus at TripleMania XXIII (AAA) – When I heard that Dave Meltzer had given this match from TripleMania minus five stars, I figured I had to go watch it. I had heard that TripleMania was bad and the bits I had watched of it weren’t all impressive. However, this match was something special. This was supposed to be Villano III’s retirement match and imagine having a retirement match that was this much of a train wreck. This was hardly Ric Flair retiring against Shawn Michaels at Wrestlemania 24. This is one to watch but for the wrong reasons!
  • Paige and Emma vs The Bella Twins on RAW: February 23rd 2015 (WWE) – This was an utterly atrocious use of these women on WWE’s flagship show, to give them a grand total of 30 seconds of in-ring action. What happened was Emma and Brie started the match, Paige was shouting at Nikki when Brie took her off the apron, Emma looked outside to check on Paige and then Brie hit Emma with the X-Factor and won. This was a complete and utter disgrace considering these talented women were given 30 seconds during a 3 HOUR SHOW of RAW. The neglect to these divas by WWE was simply revolting which ended up creating the “Divas Revolution” which we’ll get onto later. It’s one thing when you try something and it fails. It’s a slap in the face when you don’t even try to make the women look credible.
  • Kurt Angle vs Eric Young in a No Disqualification match at Bound For Glory 2015 (TNA) – This match was probably the highlight of my TNA Bound For Glory PPV review as two men that are usually great workers were put in this illogical no disqualification match. The biggest highlight to this match was, despite Eric Young piledriving Kurt Angle, the referee waving off the match, KURT ANGLE even telling Eric it’s over, the match still went on for another ten minutes or so as Kurt was selling a broken neck. You really should read my Bound For Glory review (at this link) to get the full detail of my problems with this match. I’ll just say this… thumbs down.

The winner (or in this case, the loser) is…. the Elimination Chamber match.

Now keep in mind when we give out these awards for Best or Worst match of the year, it’s not strictly down to the in-ring side of things. If that was the case, then the Villanos/Psycho Circus match would probably win hands down. We’re looking at so many more aspects of the match that made it worthy of a nomination. Angle/Young was bad because of the illogical storytelling going on. The Royal Rumble match was a disaster mostly because of the crowd reactions and the finish. Emma and Paige vs the Bella Twins was on the list because of how disrespectful it was to women’s wrestling and the Villanos/Psycho Circus was in for a number of reasons. The reason for the Elimination Chamber being the winner was down to one thing. In AAA and TNA, the expectations and standards aren’t as high as WWE’s. Considering the physical well-being of both the Villanos and the Psycho Circus and considering that TNA’s booking was just vintage TNA, you can sort of expect that. For WWE, you expect top quality action. It’d be wrong to punish the divas for WWE’s decision to give them 30 seconds. For the Elimination Chamber and the Royal Rumble, there’s no excuse. At least the first half of the Royal Rumble was actually not that bad with some cool surprise entrants and stuff, so it has at least got a few redeeming qualities to it. The Elimination Chamber was just a bad match that fell apart because of the chamber pod spots and then going on for way too long. Their improvisation made them all look like fools and it was just a retched return of the elimination chamber. Congratulations you six for being apart of the worst match of the year.

 

Turn Of The Year

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There’s been a number of effective turns which have either been executed well or has lead to even greater things just by doing it. The nominations are…

  • The New Day: Heel (WWE) – It’s amazing to think that the WWE Creative team had the New Day be good guys for five months before realising that they needed to be heels. Responding to the “New Day Sucks” chant, the men finally embraced the hate and it’s the greatest decision the WWE have made throughout the entire year. The New Day have excelled as heels and it’ll be hard to see how they can top it in 2016.
  • Undertaker: Heel? (WWE) – In hindsight, it probably wasn’t a full-on heel turn from the Dead Man. However, to explore the idea of the Lord of Darkness legitimately turning to the dark side was intriguing enough when Undertaker cost Brock Lesnar the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Battleground. Undertaker acting as a heel is very unique and I still believe that him spending the last few years of his career as a heel is what’s best for business before he rides off into the sunset.
  • Paige: Heel (WWE) – The initial turn for Paige was executed very well coming off a rather bleak program between Charlotte and Nikki Bella. Paige cut a scathing promo slating all of the divas, Charlotte and even Charlotte’s dad Ric Flair. What’s followed for Paige since then has been very flawed but the initial turn was pulled off very well.
  • Cesaro: Face (WWE) – Cesaro was already a face before this point but a true babyface moment for him this year was his program with John Cena and Kevin Owens for the United States Championship. Cesaro is a very excitable face wrestler which gives this turn a thumbs up. However, him going up against Cena in the main event of RAW was a moment which I thought was legitimately going to make him a new main event star for WWE to get behind. They showed respect to each other and the fans really did accept that Cesaro should be a main event star. Cena endorsing Cesaro among other things made this feel like a special RAW moment for Cesaro.

The winner is… the New Day!

This is the New Day’s second award and I was honestly going to give this to the Undertaker, despite that heel turn being more of a tweener turn then anything. However, the New Day’s turn was probably the most needed in the entire year and the group shined as the villains. Well done to the New Day!

 

Worst Storyline Of The Year

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This was not a great year for the writers of professional wrestling this year (with the exception of Lucha Underground). The nominations are….

  • The Rusev/Ziggler/Lana saga (WWE) – I’ll give this storyline credit in the fact that my analysis of this storyline is still one of my most viewed blog posts of the year! From the get-go, you knew this storyline couldn’t work. Trying to twist real-life relationships into a romance wrestling storyline really never works as well as it’s expected to and a lot of the time, it just came off as a really cheap soap opera rip-off. Ziggler and Lana couldn’t be accepted as a legitimate couple and Rusev ended up being the biggest loser out of everyone involved. Think about that. The man that WWE had pushed so hard in 2014 and up until Wrestlemania 31 suffered the most during this storyline. I would seriously give my article on this storyline a read at this link to get the full scoop of why this was such a failure.
  • The Divas Revolution (WWE) – I feel that the last six months in the divas roster has been nothing short of a failure with the exception of NXT. It’s very hard to believe that the same company that have put on some of the great women’s matches of all time put this storyline together in the same year. WWE’s attempts at replicating the success of the NXT women really did give women’s wrestling a bad name this year, as these women were unfortunately subjected to the terrible booking by the powers-that-be of WWE. Charlotte, Paige and the rest of the women really do need gold medals for the stuff they’ve had to put up with this year.
  • James Storm “kills” Mickie James (TNA) – Wrestlers being “killed” in storylines aren’t exactly new. Undertaker used to die every other year in WWE while Lucha Underground has ran a number of murder angles in the course of its first season. However, none where as painful to watch as Storm nudging Mickie James onto a train track. As part of a storyline where Storm tried to form a wedge between Magnus and Mickie (a real life engaged couple), the culmination of months of manipulation by Storm was TNA taking a page out of House Of Cards’ books and “killing” off Mickie James in such an anti-climactic manner (except the House of Cards scene was actually a lot more shocking than this one). It’s very hard to pull off a death storyline (unless you’re Lucha Underground) in the social media generation, but TNA’s attempt was just absurd especially when their official website referred to James Storm’s actions as “borderline criminal.” Honest to god, did not make that last part up.
  • The Battle Of The Crown (WWE) – This was hardly the “War of the five Kings” from Game of Thrones. This was WWE making a pure mockery of the value of the King of the Ring tournament. A tournament which has elevated the likes of Steve Austin, Kurt Angle and Brock Lesnar to stardom. With this storyline, Barrett’s win was treated as a joke as R-Truth also decided to be a king. As I’ve discussed in the past, Barrett has been subjected to some serious woeful booking by WWE in his career but this really takes the cake.

The winner is… The Rusev/Lana/Ziggler storyline.

There’s no doubt in my mind. As infuriating as the Divas Revolution is, as stupid as the James Storm angle was and as much of a joke as the King storyline was made, this romance angle was by far the worst storyline of the year. This takes it by a HUGE MILE. There’s never been a bigger failure of a romance angle than the Rusev, Lana and Ziggler angle. What started with Lana getting some of the best reactions in the entire company and Rusev being a top heel monster, turned into both of them being degraded to such a degree that I find it very hard to believe that either person can be elevated back to the level that they were before they were struck with this horrible storyline.

 

Match of the Year

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Here’s one of the big ones. There’s been a great deal of tremendous matches over the year and these five have been among the elite. The nominations are…

    • John Cena vs Kevin Owens at Elimination Chamber 2015 – It’s very hard to separate all three of the Cena/Owens matches this year as all stand out in their own way. The Money In The Bank match and the Battleground rubber match were both well put together. However, Elimination Chamber only just takes it just for the pure shock of Owens beating Cena so convincingly.
    • Bayley vs Sasha Banks at NXT TakeOver: Respect – It’s very hard to separate this match and one other match I’ve seen in the past over which was the greatest womens match I’ve ever seen. I feel given the background to it and the expectation, I feel this surely has to take it. These women were able to put on an incredible performance for 30 minutes, with great in-ring story-telling as Bayley had to prove that her win at NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn was no joke.
    • Undertaker vs Brock Lesnar at Summerslam 2015 – This was filled with pure intensity and drama from bell to bell as it even began with Brock Lesnar attacking Undertaker during his entrance. It was a brawl like no one had ever seen before as the Beast and the Dead Man slugged it out. Many complained about the finish but I really didn’t mind it as it was a necessary evil for the third match to happen.
    • Mil Muetrues vs Fenix in a Grave Consequences match on Lucha Underground – This rivalry, as mentioned earlier, was a very powerful one. This match in particular was the ultimate David vs Goliath match as the underdog was beaten to a pulp. This match is a must see for those not familiar with Lucha Underground!
    • Brock Lesnar (c) vs Seth Rollins vs John Cena for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at the Royal Rumble – There’s little reason needed for why this match is a nominee. Other than being the only redeeming quality of the Royal Rumble PPV that saved it from being a complete disaster, this was the perfect mix for a triple threat match. You had John Cena (who had really improved in terms of match quality this year), Seth Rollins (who has the speed and generally all-around skill) and Brock Lesnar (who ranks high in pretty much every department you can think off!). It just made for a great triple threat which made all of them look incredible.

The winner is… Undertaker vs Brock Lesnar.

I feel kind of bad having all the match of the year candidates being related to the feud of the year candidates. However, those were the big instances where the matches made the rivalry. Undertaker vs Brock Lesnar was no exception as the two put together an incredible match at Summerslam.

 

Female of the Year

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This has been a year for ups and downs for womens wrestling in WWE, but lets give credit to these women as the nominations for female of the year are…

  • Paige – The winner of last year’s award is back into the mix as Paige has had a number of great moments, even with some of the questionable decisions by the powers-that-be. She’s been a little over-exposed and over-used in the divas title picture but the lovely Englishman has given us a lot of top performances.
  • Sasha Banks – It wouldn’t be a legitimate award without at least throwing the Boss into the fray. She had a great run as NXT Womens Champion in the start of the year and she’s been a delight to see whenever she appears on the main roster. That and having one of the best matches of the year surely makes the Boss a contender.
  • Bayley – The hugger is surprisingly the only one out of the four NXT horse-women that wasn’t called up to the main roster, which is probably for the better when you consider just how well she’s performed on NXT.
  • Nikki Bella – The #1 ranked women on the PWI Womens Top 50, Nikki is also in the running for this award as her improving in-ring skill and having to lead the womens roster as champion is something you have to give her credit for.

The winner is… Sasha Banks.

I feel all the others have valid reasons for winning but Sasha has been on top of her game for all of 2015. Congratulations to the Boss!

 

Promo of the Year

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Last year, we saw some tremendous promos cut by the likes of Dean Ambrose, Paul Heyman and Bray Wyatt. Our nominations for this year’s award are…

  • Paige’s PaigeBomb On The Night After Night Of Champions (September 21st 2015) – One of the brightest moments in the Divas Revolution was Paige cut a scathing promo on all the divas which addressed the problems present with the storyline. She buried Charlotte, Becky Lynch and all the other divas as she took credit for the whole Divas Revolution. This could have been the catalyst for a true divas revolution had WWE not squandered this opportunity.
  • Paul Heyman On The Night After Wrestlemania 31 (March 30th 2015) – Last year’s winner Paul Heyman is again featured prominently this year as his angry promo following Wrestlemania was delivered tremendously. Never has a rematch clause ever been invoked in such a manner!
  • Stephanie McMahon On John Cena Missing Out Wrestlemania 31 (March 2nd 2015) – I’m a huge fan of Stephanie McMahon and this promo was a prime example of why. Stephanie’s cut a lot of passionate promos during the year but this one involving Cena was one that really caught my attention. It’s one of those reassurances to the WWE Universe that Cena does not define WWE and is not as dominant as people realise. Stephanie is one of the few people that could have gotten this point across as she did.
  • Paul Heyman On The Future Of Brock Lesnar (March 9th 2015) – Surprisingly, two of these promos come within two weeks of each other! Not going to lie, the road to Wrestlemania can bring about some beauties. Paul Heyman discussing what Brock Lesnar’s plans are after Brock’s falling out with Vince McMahon was so intense that it almost seemed that Brock was actually legitimately holding the company up over the WWE World title. It was as intense as Paul could have made it as he discussed the potential of Brock becoming WWE World and UFC Champion and “smacking around Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao” in a heated promo which really aided the promotion of Lesnar’s match with Roman Reigns tremendously.

The winner is… Paul Heyman with his angry promo on the night after Wrestlemania!

Paul is a true master of the microphone and it was evident with this promo. A deserving two-time winner of this award and there was few that could touch him this year. I always thought this promo grabbed my attention more than the one earlier on in the month, but both were amazing nevertheless. Congratulations Paul!

 

Wrestler Of The Year

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THIS IS IT. This is the big one as we determine who was the best wrestler all year long. The nominations are….

  • Seth Rollins – Last year’s winner has gone from strength to strength, having mostly reigned as WWE World Heavyweight Champion and the locker room leader. He put on great performance after great performance and was really transformed into a true main event star which is exactly what WWE are lacking in. His injury was a huge blow but it doesn’t take away from the fact that Rollins had an incredible year under him that he should really be proud of.
  • John Cena – Big Match John really upped his game in terms of his in-ring skills. John’s had match after match with the US Championship Open Challenge to demonstrate his abilities and help a fellow challenger along the way. Cena’s had great matches with the likes of Rollins, Kevin Owens, Cesaro and Dean Ambrose to make this a top year for the franchise player of WWE.
  • Kevin Owens – Despite being HUGELY under-utilised in the majority of the second half of 2015, Owens shined when given the proper mic and wrestling time. He started of the year by smashing Sami Zayn and moved onto his tremendous trilogy with John Cena. He reigned as Intercontinental Champion and in a time of need in terms of top heel stars, Kevin Owens needs to be one to push in 2016.
  • Cesaro – Cesaro gets a spot because HE FREAKING DESERVES IT. Despite not being in a lot of major programs during the year, Cesaro shined whenever he was given the ball. Even when he was under-utilised, he still did his best to make sure he had one of the best matches of the night and to prove just how great he was.
  • Brock Lesnar – Some of you may question my decision to put in a man that rarely wrestles but when he does, it’s must-see television. Brock had some of the best matches of the whole year and can captivate the audience in one way or another.

The winner is… Seth Rollins.

Congrats to Seth Rollins for winning this award for a second year in a row. While John Cena was really on top of his game this year, Seth takes this by a huge mile. He worked his ass off and his performances against some of the top names in the business shows that he belongs in the main event scene for years to come. Seth is the closest WWE’s come to creating a new legitimate star in professional wrestling.

@armbarexpress

That will wrap it up for the award. There were a few more awards that I wanted to dish out in this post and I will do a follow-up piece some time in January to reveal some of the bonus awards including the likes of “Hidden Gem of the Year.”  Thank you all so much for making this an incredible year for the Armbar Express. Thanks to the world of wrestling for giving me the motivation to write about the good and bad of wrestling this year. Cheers!

 

Team CesarKO – Could This Be What Cesaro and Randy Orton Need?

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The ideas that men with the physiques, characters and natural wrestling abilities of Cesaro and Randy Orton are floundering around the mid-card position of WWE television is pretty astounding. Randy Orton is a 12-time former World Champion. Cesaro has had an insane amount of popularity and has put in a lot of tremendous performances this year. However, these two great athletes have somehow found themselves in the position where a lot of mid-card talent have been in for years. The Miz, Wade Barrett, even Big E and Kofi Kingtson before they took off with the New Day gimmick. All of these men had been in the mid-card spot for years with no direction and have been the victims of undivided attention by the WWE writers. Somehow, Cesaro is still in this position after all of these years. Somehow, Randy Orton is now in that position as he was even supposed to be on the Hell in a Cell pre-show until he pulled out this week.

It’s hard to believe that these two are in this position. However, I do have a solution which I think will revitalise the careers of both Cesaro and Randy Orton and it actually relates to a past Wrestling Flashback I’ve done in the past. Anyone that is familiar with the SmackDown! six will know that putting individuals together in a tag team scenario will do a great job at getting both those individuals over AS individuals. Even though these individuals are in a tag team, at the end of the day they are individuals. During the SmackDown! six, you had six individuals elevated as singles stars with that tag team scenario. Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit were singles stars that got over as a tag team. Rey Mysterio and Edge were the same. Eddie and Chavo were probably more close to being a legitimate tag team than the two other two teams but it still elevated both men to World title status eventually.

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The point is that it never hurt any of those men going into the tag team division as it would help them out as individuals at the end of the day. Considering all six of the men in that “SmackDown! Six” became world champions, I think it helped tremendously. With the two of them currently in that mid-card purgatory just waiting for a direction, it wouldn’t hurt Cesaro or Randy Orton to enter that tag team scenario themselves in order to further their singles careers.

I know what you’re thinking. Of all the wrestlers you could team up, why Cesaro and Randy Orton? You’re right. Due to their different personalities, a tag team with these two does seem a little out of place. However, their wrestling styles surprisingly compensate each other nicely. Cesaro and Randy Orton have both been shown to be innovative in the ring. Cesaro is a genius in terms of his wrestling while Randy Orton is always coming up with inventive ways to hit the RKO out of nowhere. In fact, Cesaro and Randy once teamed up before to deliver probably one of the best RKOs of the year with this beauty on RAW.

As soon as I saw that finisher one the first things I thought was “these two should be a tag team.” There’s something about these two which I think could sublimely in that tag team scenario. The two of them are in the middle of nowhere anyway so why not at least give these team a shot? These two as a tag team against the New Day could result in some incredible matches on PPV. It could be a short be sweet partnership that could help elevate the Swiss Superman and the Apex Predator once again.

TOP FIVE MOMENTS FROM WWE RAW (13/10/15)

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How’s it going everybody? Thomas Robinson here with another top five moments from RAW. God, do I not want to talk about this week’s show. Luckily, I was able to pick out five moments which were at least positives on RAW. However, this show was so bad. Usually, WWE try to go all out for RAWs and PPVs in Chicago. However, it seemed like they didn’t try at all with this one. Usually in the situation where the show is so bad that the fans just take over, Chicago is usually great at doing that. However, they hardly cared for a lot of what went down. They didn’t even care enough to start chanting “CM Punk” until the last hour of the show. There was the chant of “Husky Harris” which got on my nerves during the Bray Wyatt segment but the show just lost steam after the first hour. After The New Day vs Orton and Ambrose and Cena vs Ziggler, hardly anything eventful happened. There was quick match after quick match up until the main event, which actually wasn’t that bad. Anyway, let’s run down the top five moments…
1. John Cena vs Dolph Ziggler

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As with the majority of Cena’s US Open Challenge matches, this was another good one. A few weeks ago, I did a piece about whether they should do John Cena vs Dolph Ziggler in a feud. Initially, I feared that this feud was going to be about Nikki Bella (who both of them have dated in real-life). It turns out that it’s not the case and it might just be a singles feud for the US Championship. Of course, it might not last very long if John Cena is in fact taking time off. However, I have no problem with it if it helps Dolph Ziggler in the long run. Of course, the key term is… IF.

Even though he lost clean, I can’t say Dolph Ziggler was buried. True, Dolph gave Cena everything and Cena kicked out every time. However, I at least thought that Ziggler looked good when on the attack. Ziggler was mostly in control of the match and it could have been chalked up to just not being Ziggler’s day. I think Cena beating Ziggler after one Attitude Adjustment is a bit annoying. However, I think this finish sets things up nicely for Ziggler to potentially challenge for the belt again. I don’t have a problem with the match that much and I thought it was fine.

2. The New Day vs Dean Ambrose and Randy Orton

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This makes the top five moments list mostly due to the New Day. Dean and Orton were fine in this match but the New Day just really stole the show. They were awesome as usual. They ripped both Dean and Orton. They talked about destroying Cena, Ziggler and the Dudleyz the week before. They said that they were the most dominating group in WWE. They said they were better than the Shield, the Authority, Legacy and Evolution. Great promo by the New Day.

The tag team match that followed was actually a decent TV tag team match. It was a match of one-upmanship with Dean and Orton arguing while working together. The New Day won after Orton got pushed into Dean. Not bad stuff from these four. Great work.

There’s one little gripe I’ve got with this. Other than John Cena facing Dolph Ziggler in the match that they were supposed to have last week, there was no fallout from the big ending of last week when the New Day dominated. The New Day mentioned it but it’s not like Cena, Ziggler or the Dudleyz were mad at the New Day or anything for kicking their arses. The Dudleyz had their match with the Ascension and Cena and Dolph had their deal. That was the only negative thing to take away.

3. The Rusev/Lana/Dolph Ziggler/Summer Rae storyline… IS OVER!

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Thank the gods above that this storyline is over. It wasn’t doing any of the people involved any favours as I’ve mentioned before. It kind of seemed that they were done with it last week as Dolph challenged Cena in the US title open challenge. This week basically closed the book on the whole deal with Rusev and Lana’s engagement. That’s great but I just fear for the future of Rusev.

Rusev needed this feud to end but he sure got the wrong end of the stick with this feud ending. Rusev was beaten in three minutes by Ryback and Summer Rae humiliated him afterwards. There’s some reports going around that this is WWE’s way of punishing Rusev and Lana for their engagement as it broke kayfabe. I hadn’t seen or heard Dave Meltzer talk about it yet and I haven’t seen a lot of big wrestling news sites talk about it. Whether they were punishing him or not, this made Rusev look so bad. Rusev was probably the most integral part of the storyline and he got crushed in three minutes. Keep in mind, Rusev was one of the most protected superstars last year with his undefeated streak. Now, he’s jobbing out in three minutes. They could have easily done a finish where Summer tripped Rusev which lead to the finish and would lead into the break-up.

I’ll give the post-match segment credit. Summer Rae’s delivery was great. I think Summer is the one person in this storyline that has really excelled in her role. She’s the only one that understood her role and just shined. Rusev tried as hard as he could with it but he was just put in a hard position. However, all this storyline has done is simply wreck Rusev’s character. Rusev’s worse off now than when this storyline first started. Dolph Ziggler’s fine at the moment but only because WWE’s put him up against John Cena. However, where the hell does Rusev go from here?

This storyline… was a failure. This did nothing to elevate the careers of the people involved. Dolph Ziggler’s up against Cena but that has nothing to do with the storyline. If anything, this might have something to do with Total Divas more than anything. The storyline was also a failure in the logic of it all. This is what happens when you try to break up real life couples in a kayfabe world. Did these writers not remember what happened with Edge, Lita and Matt Hardy in 2005? To be fair, their real life problems actually helped elevate Hardy and Edge in the long run. My point is, the WWE tried to convince everyone that Ziggler and Lana were this legitimate couple that they should root for. Not only did this fool no one, it came crashing down when it was announced that Lana and Rusev got legitimately engaged.

When that happened, the WWE realised they had to pull the plug on it all. If Rusev and Lana are in the dog house for this engagement, then it’s a damn shame. You’re really going to give them heat for getting engaged and breaking kayfabe? It’s not their fault that WWE put them in this horrible storyline. It’s also not their obligation to postpone any real engagement plans until after this storyline wraps up just to satisfy WWE. I’m just thankful that it’s all over.

4. Kane vs Seth Rollins 

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I will be honest, Kane was given WAY too many backstage segments this week on RAW. The segments just seemed like time wasters, with only three of them actually having any bearing on the main event of the show at all. I don’t blame the crowd that started chanting “CM Punk” at the end. They weren’t chanting his name because they were expecting him to be Seth’s mystery opponent. They were chanting it because these segments were boring.

Kane’s delivery during this segment has usually been good but he just showed up way more than he should have tonight. The match itself was actually not that bad. I’ve seen better lumberjack matches but I haven’t seen worse ones. The KO spot with Big Show and the brawl actually added to the match a bit. I am not a fan of the finish of Seth getting beat again because this segment ended the same way all the Kane/Rollins segments have ended in the last few weeks. Masked Kane destroys Seth and Seth gets hardly any momentum in. It was great at the start but now it’s just getting repetitive and boring.

I read a shocking statistic last week. I read a statistic that in his last 16 matches, Seth had lost 15 of them. For a WWE World Heavyweight Champion, that’s shocking. Did he win this week? No! He lost again! This is really not good enough. What is preventing Seth from WINNING A MATCH? This man is representing your company and yet he’s lost to the US Champion several times and is getting beat by almost everyone else. Unbelievable.

5. New tag teams?

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The match itself was short and not that eventful, but the tag teams that were put together were actually not bad concepts. It was Cesaro and Neville teaming up against Sheamus and King Barrett. These two teams would actually make great additions to the tag team division but I highly doubt WWE will do anything with them. After all, they gave them a small amount this week. However, the concepts were good. I actually do have a good idea for a tag team for Cesaro which I’m planning an article for so stay tuned for that…

05/10/2015 RAW Review – The New Day Stands Tall As Hell in a Cell Draws Near

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After taking a brief detour at Madison Square Garden, the WWE are back on the road to Hell in a Cell. However, WWE were really under pressure with this edition of RAW. Last week’s RAW did record low numbers and WWE really had to pull out all the stops. Did this week’s RAW deliver?
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Brock Lesnar started off the show. “Suplex City” chants thundered around the arena as soon as the music ended. Paul Heyman cut a promo, calling Brock the “giant slayer.” He switched gears from Big Show to Undertaker at Hell in a Cell. Paul said that this was a fight that Undertaker could not win. He called Hell in a Cell the lair of the beast. They played this video package of Brock Lesnar breaking the streak which I swear they have used for well over a year now. It was the EXACT same video! It was a fantastic promo until Big Show showed up. He got “Please Retire” chants. Big Show admitted that Brock was the better man and wanted to shake his hand. However, Brock just walked past it. Big Show said that he hoped Brock would lose again against the Undertaker. Brock eventually took out Brock with a Belly to Belly and a F5. It was a great start to the show and a great start to the build-up to Hell in a Cell.

Seth talked to Stephanie and asked her to call off the tag team match with Seth and Big Show vs the Dudleyz (as Big Show just got taken out by Brock) but Steph refused, She told Seth to figure it out. I’d just like to say that Steph looked lovely tonight.

We had a six man tag team match to start the show. Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose and Randy Orton took on the Wyatt Family. So here, we got the match we probably would have gotten at Night of Champions if Jericho hadn’t showed up instead. The good guys took control before RAW went to an advert. Dean Ambrose played dead in the middle of the ring which was a funny moment. What looked like it hurt was Braun catching Dean and then just throwing him onto the floor. Ouch….

It’s important to note that I kind of got distracted because Dixie Carter was tweeting about Ethan Carter III’s injunction against TNA World Heavyweight Champion Matt Hardy! The match rolled on. Orton and Reigns both came in off hot tags. Dean and Braun got slowly hurdled over the barricade. Roman and Orton hit their finishers on Luke Harper for the win as Bray sat on the entrance ramp. A decent opener. I liked this match. Roman cut a short promo on Bray, saying that he was going to end things at Hell in a Cell.

Neville vs Sheamus with Wade Barrett on commentary. This was an all British affair which I’m all for. Sheamus called Neville a leprechaun in his pre-match promo. Neville attacked him to kick off the match. Barrett went to “have a word” with Neville about attacking him which lead to Sheamus Brogue kicking Neville for the win. A very short match on RAW. Someone made a good point on Twitter when they mentioned that Neville was out-muscled by the referee when he was pulling him away from Sheamus at the start of the match. That really shouldn’t be happening…

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Corporate Kane cut a promo. Kane suggested himself to be Seth’s tag team partner until Seth came out. Seth interrupted him and compared him to Tom Brady. He said that they both had deflated balls and that he wasn’t taking Kane’s crap. Kane and Seth argued back and forth. It was great chemistry between the two on the mic. Seth threatened to take Kane to hell before Stephanie interrupted them. Stephanie revealed that Seth sent the anonymous e-mail last week. Steph talked about Tom Brady leading the New England Patriots to another Super Bowl. Stephanie McMahon announced that Demon Kane will challenge Seth Rollins for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Hell in a Cell. She also confirmed that Kane would be Seth Rollins’ partner for RAW. Lastly, she told Kane that if Demon Kane doesn’t win, Corporate Kane would be relived off his duties. Not a bad segment.

Seth seeked advise from Yoda, who manifested himself into Triple H.

Natalya vs Paige was next. Fans were chanting “We Want Sasha” TWENTY SECONDS into the match. This was a really good divas match. I liked Natalya tapping out Paige. Natalya looked weak when she returned, only to get beat by Naomi. I thought it was the right call. However, Dave Meltzer said that Paige MIGHT have done something wrong backstage which was the reason for her cleanly tapping out. Not quite sure what was it but we’ll see if it really effects her.

Ryback cut a small promo. I love how one of the first things he said was “Actions speak louder than words” and then proceeded to cut a promo on Kevin Owens! Mixed messages!

Kevin Owens was in a non-title match against Sin Cara. Kevin mocked the “Lucha” chant the Lucha Dragons do which got a chuckle from me. Kevin had some incredible comments during the match, including calling Kalisto a 12 year old! Anyway, Kevin beat him in a match that was really all about Kevin’s comments in the ring! Ryback saved the Lucha Dragons from a beat down… BY ONE MAN! That’s some whacked logic right there.

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The New Day approached Stephanie, who was annoyed by them. Stephanie said that if Xaiver played one note of the trombone, she’d send them to a place that’d make Suplex City seem like Disneyland! I liked that comment and I liked this segment! She announced that it would be the Dudley Boyz vs New Day for the tag titles at Hell in a Cell which upset the group.

John Cena and Roman Reigns were in the ring with the Komen charity. John Cena cut a really nice promo on the charity. I know Roman Reigns is a big part of this charity campaign, but him cutting his promo after a big brawl with the Wyatts earlier just completely hurt the intensity his character had just built up for himself. Not going to bury this segment or anything but that was the one drawback I think.

Seth Rollins and Corporate Kane vs the Dudley Boyz. There was a “Save The Tables” chant at the start of the match which I loved! Among the great chants during this match was “We want Spike” and “We want Sasha!” Sasha Banks was really over tonight! Kane was “working” with a bad ankle. Seth told Kane to take it easy throughout. Kane went for a small dropkick but fell over. The doctor told Kane to go to the back but Seth handcuffed Kane to the ring post. The handcuffs broke and Kane was taken to the back. Kane smiled on his way back as Seth was left alone to fight the Dudleyz. The Dudleyz gained control and the Dudleyz got the table. When Seth dropkicked the table onto the Dudleyz, the ref called for the bell. Then Demon Kane came out for Seth and attacked him. Kane was going for the chokeslam but the Dudley Boyz hit the 3D on Kane. Seth tried to put Kane through the table but ended up getting chokeslammed through it.

I thought all the Kane and Seth Rollins stuff from RAW was actually good. There was just a LOT of time given to the two of them. There’s just a lot to take in and their last segment just seemed to drag.

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Team B.A.D. vs Team Bella. This was a rematch from SmackDown! Team B.A.D. got one of the biggest reactions of the night and that was largely due to Sasha! Sasha cut a promo. Sasha said she put the “boss” in Boston. She was cut off by the Bellas. Nikki talked about going all the way and Naomi responded by saying that going all the way was something Nikki was used to. Sasha said that the champion was warming the title up for her. This broke down into an argument and it was actually a good pre-match segment between the two. I think these two teams just have good chemistry together on the mic. Naomi and Sasha were great especially.

This was not a great six man tag. Brie messed up a couple of takedowns. Alicia looked like she was putting herself to sleep with the sleeper hold she applied to Naomi. Sasha came in off the hot tag. Brie Bella sold Tamina Snuka’s super kick like she was a fish out of water. Team B.A.D. won the match after Sasha submitted Alicia. Sasha was spared the usual hometown humiliation and came out strong after tonight.

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We saw the continuation of the Rusev saga. Summer Rae called out Rusev. They played an incredible video package of Rusev and Summer together. Summer Rae then PROPOSED to Rusev! Yep, this actually happened. Rusev said yes… but not yet. Rusev said he needs gold around his waist before Summer can get gold around her finger. I like this turn of events. Rusev actually took more interest into his career than his love life for once. This made Rusev seem serious which I’m all about.

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It was time for the John Cena US Open Challenge. Dolph Ziggler initially answered the call but was taken out by the New Day. Big E took his place. It was a nice little match. Kofi and Xaiver got thrown out and Big E tried to hit John Cena with the trombone but Cena countered it into a AA for the win. Ziggler came out to help but accidentally super kicked Cena. The Dudley Boyz came out to attack the New Day but they got beaten up too. In a shocker, the heels the New Day beat the good guys THREE ON FOUR! Damn! The New Day looked powerful as hell with this ending!

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It was not a bad RAW. I think it was better than last week’s and it did do a better viewership number then last week. I think average is the best way to describe it to be honest!

07/09/2015 RAW REVIEW – A Great Day For The New Day, A Bad Day For Seth Rollins

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Hello everybody. Welcome to the RAW review. This RAW was a very special RAW for me. It was one of the rare occasions where I stayed up and watched this live. I’m from the UK and RAW is on over here at 1am and finishes at 4. I rarely get a chance to watch it live and I figured that I’d give it a watch. The last two episodes of RAW were actually good so I stayed up for this one because of a lot of things. I heard Sting was going to be on the show, which he was. I knew the New Day were going to be on and be the most entertaining act of the night, which they were. I was expecting a few surprises, and there was. However, all of that could not save this show from possibly being the worst episode of RAW in years.

I give credit where credit’s due. I usually try to maintain a positive outlook on WWE. I’m an optimist and I hope for the best. However, this show was a massive disappointment. This show was following great work from the last couple of weeks and this was supposed to be the “Season Finale” of RAW. I should be over the moon about how great the New Day were. However, everything else on this show really didn’t hit the mark. Let me cut to the chase. Seth Rollins’ promo at the start of the show just set the tone for this really embarrassing episode of RAW. Keep in mind, WWE had stars like Sting, Triple H, John Cena, Edge, Christian, The Dudley Boyz, Randy Orton and so many others in their disposal. Yet somehow, the crowd seemed dead for this show. I don’t blame them for not caring about this show and it all started with the Seth Rollins promo at the start.

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Seth Rollins has really stepped up his game in terms of his promos in the last few months. The fans were invested into everything he had to say. He was a joy to listen to. Tonight however, he was not. Seth’s promo revolved around him talking about how he was “special” and complained about Sting stealing his statue. Last week, Seth found out that he would be defending both his WWE World and US titles on the same night against Sting and John Cena respectively. This promo should have been put in place to allow Seth to get out his frustrations about the whole deal. He’s the victim of this whole thing as he has to wrestle two healthy WWE stars on the same night, and he dedicated most of this promo complaining about a statue.

Sting interrupted and cut a goofy promo about the statue. I liked Sting during this show. He was the mixture of craziness and goofiness that made him a hit on this show. It was sort of like his deal in TNA as “Joker” Sting, but it was a lot less tamer. That was fine because it’s humour that the WWE’s PG audience would find entertaining. I have no problem with all of this.

Sheamus then came out to confront Rollins. Sheamus and Seth Rollins may possibly be an upcoming MAIN EVENT feud for WWE. Sheamus could possibly cash in on Rollins, become the Authority’s new favourite and lead to Seth Rollins’ big face turn. This could be a program in the near future. To get you excited about the possibility of this feud, WWE put on the most embarrassing back-and-forth I think I’ve seen all year long. This was involving MAIN EVENTERS! All they did was just call each other stupid and Sheamus joked about Ronald McDonald being a relative of his. This segment made Sheamus to look like a complete joke. I felt so bad for the guy. However, things would get worse for Sheamus later on in the show…

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Seth Rollins was forced to wrestle twice in one night tonight. He wrestled Ryback in a decent champion vs champion match. Seth is just one of those wrestlers that can have a decent match with anyone. He’s creative enough that he can make Ryback look good in there. Ryback didn’t really mess anything. Ryback WON after Sting popped up on the titantron. I had no problem with the finish. Ryback’s roll up was A LOT better than the roll up in the finish of the divas match between Sasha Banks and Paige (we’ll get on to that later). I only had a few problems with this match. Firstly, this match featured the holders of THREE of the top titles in WWE. You’d think a match featuring these two important figures in the WWE would go on LAST? When was the last time you saw a match which featured a WWE World Heavyweight Champion, a US Champion and a Intercontinental Champion? This should have had a lot more build and it was kind of offending that this went on first with little promotion before hand other than word of mouth from Stephanie. Secondly, there was NO development in this new feud involving Ryback and Kevin Owens. Other than Kevin Owens eating an apple and confronting Ryback before his match, nothing else happened. Kevin didn’t do anything to really get Ryback’s attention other than verbal remarks. Surely he should have ATTACKED him after this match? I guess not…

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Paige vs Sasha Banks actually opened the show. I think I’m probably just going to jump around a lot in this episode so bare with me. This match was an OK match. These two are very good workers and this REALLY should be the feud for the Divas Championship. It was an OK match… until the finish. Paige hit the RamPaige onto Sasha when Naomi got into the ring and distracted Paige. Sasha took advantage with a MESSY roll up to score the pin. The pin looked like both Paige AND Sasha’s shoulders were on the mat. It looked to me like it was a draw. Maybe that was the intent, as Paige complained about the finish and Sasha’s shoulders being on the mat afterwards. However, none of the commentators brought this up on commentary. The PCB never seemed to protest this as Paige was just upset in the ring. It just looked like a really bad roll up which they tried to cover up afterwards on SOCIAL MEDIA with a verbal spat from Paige.

I also have an issue with Naomi’s run in. Did we really need the distraction to be a deciding factor in the finish of this match? Naomi’s getting in the ring should really just be the spot which would lead to Sasha taking over and getting herself the heat on Paige. It should not really be a part of the finish. It’s not like Naomi attacked Paige or anything, like Tamina had earlier on. She got in the ring, she got back out and Sasha rolled up Paige for the win. One last thing about this match. Sasha has now been Paige TWICE on RAW in the last month as well as Nikki Bella in a non-title match a few weeks ago. I understand this is scripted entertainment but surely that should put Sasha in contention for a title shot. I feel really bad for Sasha and her group, who are apparently having to play third-fiddle to the PCB and Team Bella.

Speaking of the PCB and Team Bella, Nikki would talk about breaking AJ’s record title reign next week and put up the Bellatron. She announced a Bellabration until she was interrupted by the PCB. Charlotte announced that she would be getting a title shot next week on RAW, meaning Nikki’s title reign could end just hours before breaking the record. I personally don’t think Charlotte should win the title right now. If you read my recent article on Charlotte (at this link), you can see why. Her winning the title next week might be a big moment for her but I don’t think it’ll help her in the long term. However, I am glad we’re finally getting a Divas Championship match next week!

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Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns SQUASHED The Ascension in a tag team match. This was ridiculous for so many reasons. Firstly, the Ascension had just began a stable with Stardust on SmackDown! I love how the majority of this show featured replays of the events that took place on SmackDown!, yet the writers on RAW seemed to neglect the events of SmackDown! here as the Ascension didn’t appear with Stardust! There was no mention of the group forming and it was just typical business as usual for the Ascension. You’d think if they were wanting to push this new stable, the Ascension would maybe pick up some wins first and build themselves up. That didn’t happen tonight as Roman and Dean squashed them in a matter of minutes!

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Bray Wyatt appeared, vowing to take out everyone thinking of joining Roman and Dean’s crusade. Randy Orton was shown talking to Ambrose and Reigns prior to his match with Sheamus.

The funny thing is just before RAW started, I listened to Steve Austin talking about this Randy Orton/Sheamus feud and he was bang on the money. There was NO storyline involved, there was no new developments after Sheamus beat Orton at Summerslam. It’s not like Sheamus beat Orton by cheating at Summerslam either. He just won clean giving Orton no logical reason for wanting a rematch. It was just incredibly frustrating watching what these men were being put through. I don’t blame the fans for not caring about this match.

Firstly, the match itself was OK. It was worse than their Battleground and Summerslam matches but it was an alright TV match. However, it was just so hard to get invested into this match. It’s also incredibly hard to consider Sheamus as a possible top main event heel when he cuts promos during matches saying “I don’t look stupid”. This was very bad because Sheamus is supposed to be this tough, Irish brawler. He’s supposed to love a good old fight more than anything else. He’s like Finlay with his mean attitude. With that being said, why on earth would Sheamus care about the fans calling him out on his looks? It completely contradicted the character that he has developed ever since he debuted. Interim UFC Featherweight Champion Conor McGregor would not get distracted in a UFC fight if the fans started chanting “You look stupid”. He doesn’t care about how he looks. He cares about beating people up and dominating in the UFC. Sheamus should have the same mentallity. He certaintly should have the same mentality if he’s supposed to WIN the WWE WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP!

 actually began trending on Twitter following this match. This is how uninterested people were in this match. Orton won with an RKO and was immediately attacked by the Wyatts. I guess this was because he was talking to Dean and Roman before backstage. Whether this leads to Randy actually joining Dean and Roman remains to be seen.

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I do want to mention probably the greatest segment I’ve seen all year long in WWE. It was a four minute backstage segment and it followed Seth losing to Ryback. He was looking for Sting when the New Day showed up. They were trying to get Seth riled up about their six man tag team match against John Cena and the Prime Time Players. Seth got angry and he was then confronted by Edge and Christian. Seth’s bad night continued when he chickened out of a fight with someone with a serious neck problem so serious that one shock could lead to Edge being paralyzed. Way to put over your champion…

The New Day and Edge and Christian began a music battle, pitting Xaiver Woods’ trombone against Edge and Christian’s kazoos. Big E tried to eat the Kazoos when the Dudleyz showed up. They announced that the New Day would be defending the titles next week against the Prime Time Players. The Dudleyz, Edge and Christian began singing a song about breaking tables which was a very cheerful moment. This segment was… magical. The New Day was just incredible during this entire show. Sadly this segment was followed up by Summer Rae…

If you’ve read this blog before, you’ll know of my deep disdain for this Ziggler/Rusev/Lana angle. When Lana was revealed to be injured and out for four months, I was hoping that they’d just wrap up this storyline. I jokingly said that WWE might drag this storyline out for four months until Lana is back and is able to have her first match. However, when I saw this angle with Ziggler, Rusev and Summer Rae, I have a feeling they’ll actually probably do that! This LONG segment ended with Ziggler attacking Rusev and then Ziggler vs Rusev being announced for Night of Champions.

I understand that there’s not actually been a clear winner between Rusev or Ziggler in this entire storyline. Their match at Summerslam ended in a double count out and Ziggler won by DQ on RAW last week. What would be logical is that this match would be made NO DISQUALIFICATION so there MUST be a winner. However, it was just announced as a standard match like all the other ones! If you’re going to do this match for a THIRD TIME, can you at least make it a little bit different? Throw in a stipulation or something. Because all of this will need to nothing positive if their match at Night of Champions doesn’t truly represent the pent-up “emotion” from Rusev and Ziggler. These two have hated each other for months. They’d want to just beat each other up. Why do the exact same match for the second PPV in a row?

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The Dudley Boyz beat Los Matadores. When Los Matadores came out with El Torito, I was PRAYING that Bubba would put El Torito threw a table! I was sadly disappointed. After the Dudleyz won, Diego was angry at El Torito and started pushing Torito around. This was apparently the big heel turn of Los Matadores. This was shortly followed up with the Dudleyz putting Diego through a table. What a way to turn heel…

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Cesaro and The Miz wrestled to a double count out when the Big Show interfered. The Miz ran into the crowd and because Cesaro was outside too, it was ruled a double count out. After seemingly turning face once more, Show KO’d Cesaro and just walked off. This match needed to happen… why? What was the benefit to EITHER of one these wrestlers? What was the benefit of Big Show running out to run off The Miz and then KO Cesaro. This helped… NO ONE.

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We had the six man tag team match main event, with the Prime Time Players and Cena taking on Rollins and the New Day. The New Day were hilarious throughout this match. The match itself wasn’t actually that bad but the fans around that time in the show was just drained. You could tell as the fans barely had enough energy to chant “John Cena Sucks” during Cena’s entrance. Xaiver Woods was just the start of this match and he wasn’t even in the match itself! There was a spot where Xaiver began playing the trombone to the rhythm of the moves his team mates were doing. You’ll have to go and watch the match itself to see how magical it all was. It added so much life into the match. It was weird seeing Cena getting beaten up until TITUS O’NEIL got the hot tag. Shocking. To be fair, Titus usually has awesome hot tag moments so I didn’t mind. The match ended with Cena catching Kofi and hitting the AA for the win. This was followed by Sting appearing on the screen one FINAL TIME to crush Seth Rollins’ status. That was the end to RAW.

I was going to talk about the ending of RAW itself in a bit more detail but I might just wrap things up now. All I can say is that this show was so draining. There was little for the fans to get excited for. Seth Rollins got completely buried throughout the entire night. There were a lot of screwed up finishes. Some horrid storylines continued and it was a true let down when considering how great the last two shows have been. This show gets a MASSIVE thumbs down. All I can say is that next week’s RAW has to be REALLY good in order to get people into Night Of Champions…