Welcome back Wrestling fans to the Wrestling Roundtable, where the true experts in professional wrestling debate the latest and greatest topics in the world of professional wrestling.
This week we discuss the fall out of the Elimination Chamber, and yet another Pay Per View coming in the next two weeks. We also discuss a potential superstar Diva in the making. The WWE about to sign a star from the HBO series, Game of Thrones? This and much more on the Wrestling Roundtable.
Let’s start as always with the Power Rankings this week.
1. Dean Ambrose- As far as I am concerned the uncrowned WWE Champion. Pins Rollins at Elimination Chamber, but decision reversed to win by DQ. He has another shot in 10 days.
2. Roman Reigns- Three victories over top tier opponents on Raw moves Reigns up a spot to #2.
3. Kevin Owens- First match ever in the WWE and he pins a 15x WWE champion in John Cena? Welcome to the WWE, and to the Power Rankings Mr. Owens.
4. Seth Rollins- Rollins is a little punk as bitch of a champion, and he could be out of the Power Rankings if he doesnt start producing. Ill give him one thing. He showed some balls accepting the challenge for the ladder match at Money in the bank.
5. Ryback- Brand new Intercontinental Champion makes his debut to the Power Rankings. Can he stay here with the Big Show lurking?
Here is what happened this week in professional wrestling.
Stunning Steve Austin defeated Beautiful Bobby Eaton to win the WCW World Television Championship. This was Austin’s first singles championship in WCW. He would go on to win the TV title on two other occasions, the United States title on two occasions, and the Tag Team Championship with Brian Pillman.
TNA Impact Wrestling debuted on Fox Sports. It was the first TV spot for the company after being a Pay Per View only company. Our own panelist Eric Asafailo has watched every episode since the debut…hahahaha Sorry Eric, I had to.
And now the questions for this week.
Last week we discussed which wrestler on the NXT roster is the next big star on the WWE Main roster. Which leads to the question this week. Would you rather be the top fish in a small pond in NXT as a main eventer, or a small fish in a big pond in the WWE roster?
Steve: It is awesome and a lot of fun to be at the top of the roster, even if it is in a “smaller pond” of sorts. While Kevin Owens is currently the NXT champion, and Sami Zayn is one of the top stars in NXT. The ultimate goal is to be on the main roster and at least have the opportunity to be at the top. It is kind of like being a professional baseball player. Does a player want to spend his entire career in the minor leagues, even if that player is killing it and wins MVP’s in triple A? No, the goal is to become a Major League Baseball player, and say that they were in the show. When it comes down to professional wrestlers, you have these guys in NXT which is basically the minor leagues, and the WWE is the big leagues. That is the goal for any professional wrestler out there. So that is the most important in my opinion.
Eric: What kinda fish would I rather be? Both have its advantages any which way you go about it. I would choose both. I would start off being a big fish in a small pond on NXT then I would get tired of that and want to move on to being a small fish in a big pond on the WWE main roster. It is most wrestling fans dreams to one reach the main roster of the WWE. I think once you hit it, you know you have made it. So if had to only one choose one, I would pick a small fish in a big pond and be on the WWE main roster as a talent.
Josh: TI would like to start off by saying that I was the ONLY member of this panel to correctly predict that Ryback would win the IC Title in the Elimination Chamber, further proving that you can skip everyone else’s opinions and just read mine for the correct information. Now on to your question: That depends on how you feel about risk. When you are a big fish in a little pond, you are on top, and are not likely to fall, aside from the obvious things like injury, etc. However moving up to the big leagues, so to speak, is a HUGE risk. There are guys who were a big deal in other promotions, and make the move to WWE only to flop. Ultimo Dragon, Super Crazy, Goldberg, Sabu, all top tier athletes in their original promotions, however, they make the move to WWE and flop. Samoa Joe took a huge risk just going to NXT, same thing for Hideo Itami, and Finn Balor. Those guys could be THE GUY just about anywhere they wanted, but they chose to make the leap. Finn seems to be making the transition well and could be a huge star, and while Itami’s talent is undeniable, he really hasn’t been catching on with even an NXT audience, and it could only be a matter of time before he is gone. SOme people would really like to take the safe road, but not me. I will take my chances, see just how good I can be.
Chad: For any wrestler in the WWE the pinnancle of the profession is the be on the grand of stage of Wrestlemania so for me and a lot of other WWE Superstars I would rather be a fish in the pond as long I would have a chance to be on the grand stage of Wrestlemania.
Some “experts” in wrestling say that NXT Diva Sasha Banks could very well be the greatest female wrestler as far as wrestling talent goes, of all time. Do you agree with this assessment?
Steve: When I read this article, I have to admit I have not seen much of Sasha Banks in the ring. So I went ahead and looked up some film on her. And WOW! This chick can flat out go. So I am on the fence and will say that it is way too early to tell. However, since she is so young, and seems to generate some outstanding in ring ability, if she can be successful on the main roster, then I would lean towards yes, that she could very well be the best in ring performer the womens division as ever seen.
Eric: I would have to agree with the experts on this. I think Sasha Banks is an amazing talent in the WWE and it is only a matter of time before we will see her on the main roster. Let’s face facts, the divas division on the main roster hasn’t been the best over the past several years, I think Sasha Banks could be what the divas division needs in order to propel the division up and make people start to want to see it more often. Who knows, maybe once Sasha Banks gets up to the main roster we may see for the first time ever a divas match main event a ppv. Never say never in the world of Professional Wrestling.
Josh: I haven’t seen enough of Sasha Banks to say this for certain, but she has talent, that much is for sure. However, to say she is the greatest of all time is still a stretch with so much left to prove. You are putting her in the ranks of Fabulous Moolah, Lita, Trish Stratus, AJ Lee, etc. She even has competition for that title within NXT with the likes of Bailey and Charlotte (can’t deny her pedigree). However with the crop of divas that WWE has to pull from now, how long until we see a Diva’s Money in the Bank match? Anyone want to see a RamPage from the top of a ladder?
Chad: I think for any discussion into being the greatest ever there are several factors to look at. In the case of Sasha Banks I would definitely say that the potential is definitely there with only being 23 years of age and already having some experience is definitely an advantage in her favor towards being remembered as a great female wrestler in the world of pro wrestling.
Once again we are only two weeks away from yet another WWE Pay Per View. What is the WWE doing by having a third Pay Per View within a 30 day period, and is this a trend you would like to see continue, or is it plain overkill?
Steve: It is way too much and no I do not want to see this trend continue. I have been a proponent to have less Pay Per View’s in a year, but they are going in the opposite direction and they are having more it seems like. I honestly don’t know what they are doing. So they are going to need to do one of two things in order to keep the interest of the fans. First, they need to shorten RAW to two hours, or Second, they need to lessen the amount of the Pay Per Views that they have. This one PPV every two weeks is overkill and while I love my wrestling, I too need a break.
Eric: The third ppv in a period of four weeks is coming up soon on the WWE network. WWE Money in the Bank will be live on the WWE network on Sunday June 14, 2015. I think this is just becoming plain overkill and putting out too many ppvs. I get they are trying to promote the WWE network and trying to get more subscribers, however we must remember that the WWE has 5 hours of tv they have to fill every week. With making these ppvs every two weeks it’s not given enough time for building up of shows. I still believe that there needs to only be a ppv every other month. Now that they are doing them every two weeks it’s almost becoming too much too keep with. I think the WWE needs to calm it down with the ppvs and focus more on building and make six events a year unmissable.
Josh: Good lord this is overkill. If they are going to do PPV’s like this, they need to move RAW back down to 2 hours. There is no difference between a good episode of RAW and a PPV anymore. I am not going to say that they should go back down to 4, but one PPV every two months, let’s say, Rumble, Mania, Money in the Bank, Summer Slam, Clash of Champions and Survivor Series. Then on the off months you can have special events only on the network, for example, a King of the Ring tourney, ONLY on the network. That would be a great way to generate interest and give the talent time to build their storylines to the next PPV>
Chad: I think with the WWE Network WWE can afford themselves the opportunity to promote Special Shows like Elimination Chamber and Money in the Bank to promote the network for the low low price of 9.99 instead of the full PPV price that used to be consistent with these offering.
It has been reported that the WWE is close to signing a deal with Game of Thrones actor Hafhor Bjornsson. Is this a good move by the WWE, or is it yet another attempt to shine on the big stage?
Steve: I mean it is what it is. Vince has a man crush for big guys, and Bjornsson fits that build to a tee. I think this has to do a lot with his look, and a chance to gain a different type of audience to the WWE. History has shown that typically this is not the best idea, as they have had TV stars compete in the WWE before, and it just made for some bad TV. Time will tell how this will pan out. It seems a bit much with the timing with Tough Enough right around the corner. You would have a thousands of men and women busting their asses for a chance to achieve their dream, and then they bring in a guy from a very popular show. I don’t know if this is a publicity stunt, or if he really has some wrestling background. I am willing to give it a shot and see what happens.
Eric: Ok first of all, I don’t know who in the blue hell this guy even is. I don’t watch Game of Thrones, so I googled him and this is a big guy. However just because someone is bigger doesn’t mean he can work as a professional wrestler IE The great Khali. So if this guy can work as wrestler, this maybe a good thing for the WWE, but if he can’t work as a wrestler then it’s just a waste of time and effort. I think only time will tell on this one, but as of now. I’m waiting to see if this guy can work or not.
Josh: Only one thing to say about this, can the guy wrestle?
Chad: I definitely feel like Hafthor and his background of being professional strongman and basketball player definitely shows he has some athletic abilities. He also is young enough to give the world of professional wrestling and would definitely bring in the Game of Throne audience.
What are your overall thoughts on the Elimination Chamber?
Steve: Well let’s start with the matches itself. I thought that the tag team chamber match was everything it was supposed to be. It had some high energy and we saw things we have never seen before when Kalisto climbed to the center of the dome of the cage. I think it may be the beginning of something to push the Prime Time Players. Good match overall. Then you had the Diva’s match which if I had to rate out of 5 stars, it would be a negative 1. This match was brutal from start to finish. I am glad they had Nikki retain, because at least she has shown to be the face of the Diva’s division, but this match set them back a little I think. Neville vs Bo Dallas was decent and was fun to watch. The Cena vs Owens match was an instant classic, and we will get to see it again in two weeks. I was glad to see that John Cena put over a guy like Owens who has really paid his dues in the smaller independent circuits for the past 15 years. He deserved to get his moment. Then we had the Intercontinental Championship match. I was really looking forward to this particular match, and I was highly disappointed. I have no problem with the outcome with Ryback winning the title, but the whole match just seemed weak, and not very well thought out. You didnt see very many good spots like you did with the Tag Team match up. Was just a very dull and boring match overall. Which brings me to the WWE title match between Rollins and Ambrose. Are you freaking kidding me? It was awesome when Ambrose pinned Rollins and was declared the WWE Champion. I kinda thought it was too easy for Ambrose to be deemed champion and thought something was coming. It was yet another reason why the WWE title reign of Seth Rollins is one of the worst of all time. (Note I wrote this before RAW and before Roman Reigns said it)
Eric: The Elimination Chamber ppv was this past Sunday. my thoughts on the event was mediocre. The tag team Chamber match, and WWE WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE match were. Match of the night was Kevin Owens vs John Cena. This match was simply amazing. I saw moves in that match I had never seen before. My hat is off to those two men. The rest of the ppv was very blah! I didn’t really care for the rest. I was watching it with my son and his favorite match was the Intercontinental Chamber match. That was the only match he sat threw the whole thing and didn’t turn away to his tablet instead. So my overall rating for this ppv was a 5/10. It could have been better but it also could have been alot worse.
Josh: I thought the chamber was pretty good, much better than Payback. I really enjoyed BOTH chamber matches, the IC title one had some low points, but Mark Henry really made the match better. The Diva’s match was meh…don’t understand the booking decision there, I really would have thought that Naomi had earned an opportunity to carry the strap, but apparently not. Kevin Owens vs John Cena should be up for match of the decade. The biggest problem was the ending. I know they wanted to set up a ladder match for the title at MiTB, but really? Just give Rollins a clean win already, he DESPERATELY needs it. I know heels tend to win in heel fashion, but eventually they still have to be able to WIN to make the fact that they are champion seem at least somewhat credible. All in all, I give the PPV 7/10
Chad: I enjoyed the overall event. It was pleasant to see Ryback break through and win gold in the Intercontinental Title. I definitely was surprised by Kevin Owens winning clean over John Cena. I also enjoyed the confusing finish of the main event which lead to the rematch setup for Money in the Bank.
Time for a quick fan response question:
Hey fans, this is Josh, have a quick question for you. Feel free to respond on Facebook, on twitter, or in the comments: I watched the Stone Cold podcast after Raw with Paul Heyman. Brock Lesnar vs. Stone Cold at Wrestlemania 32 (in Texas) was heavily teased at the end….is that a match you would want to see? How would you book it? Again, feel free to respond in the comments!
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