Happy Thanksgiving wrestling fans. Thanks for taking time out of your holiday festivities to check out this weeks episode of the Wrestling Roundtable. Enjoy that turkey, enjoy those Football games. But before you do all that check out all the happenings around the world of wrestling, as the panelists discuss the latest on goings in the wrestling.
This week: Was it wrong for the WWE to bring up Reid Flair’s death? Also the fallout of Survivor Series. Who walked away as the new WWE Champion, is he the new face of the WWE? All this and much more.
Let’s start off with the Frosh Five. Last week Frosh drew controversy beyond belief when he stated that Stone Cold Steve Austin was bad for the WWE. What does Frosh have in store for us this week?
This week, in honor of Thanksgiving, the top five things in WWE currently, that we have to be thankful for!
5. The Divas title picture is looking interesting – This has been a long time coming, but it finally looks like we might get a good, personal battle for the Diva’s championship….I am hoping for ladder match.
4. The Big Show hasn’t been deeply involved in a big storyline in months – Thank goodness! We don’t have to sit through boring writing, boring delivery and boring matches, with boring old Big Show. I remember when he used to be interesting. It seems like such a long time ago.
3. Jack Swagger is alive! – I am so grateful for this…I could swear he had died or something….I dunno, he dissapeared for a while, but now he is back, and gonna be fighting Del Rio….again….for a lesser title…wait……hmm….I have the strangest sense of Deja Vu.
2. Kevin Owens is still your IC Champion – He has single handedly made this title important. Whoever beats him will have to be good, and once that happens, look to Owens to be in the world title picture within the month.
1. Sheamus cashed in Money in the Bank! Now we no longer have to look at his stupid face carrying around that briefcase. We know that once he loses the title, he has virtually no shot of getting back into the title picture, as opposed to a guaranteed shot! YAY!
Here are the Wrestling Roundtable Power Rankings
1. Roman Reigns– Despite not walking out the WWE Champion at Survivor Series, Reigns won the tournament to claim his first championship onlyto be robbed of it.
2. Dean Ambrose- A win over the Intercontinental Champion keeps Ambrose at the 2 spot, Ambrose came inches away from winning the championship tournament.
3. Sheamus- Walked out of Survivor Series with the gold after cashing in the Money in the Bank contract. Will he be able to hold on to it?
4. Kevin Owens- Nearly made the Finals of the tournament, Owens is ready to be the next top star in the business.
5. Frosh- Had my email blown up last week with his controversial comments on the Frosh Five.
This week in professional wrestling.
1983- The NWA debuted Starrcade. Ric Flair defeated Harley Race to win his third World Championship.
1992- Bret Hart squared off against Shawn Michaels for the first time on Pay Per View at Survivor Series. It was champion vs champion.
2014- Sting made his long awaiting debut in the WWE at Survivor Series.
Here are the questions this week.
Was the WWE in the wrong by bring up Ric Flair’s son (Reid Flair) overdose death during the segment with Paige and Charlotte two weeks ago on Raw? How much is too much?
Steve: I don’t care what the circumstances are. You do not bring up a death of a relative that really happened in real life. Sure they did it with Katie Vick, and the coffin incident with Triple H, they did it with the Big Shows father, when the Big Boss Man made a mockery out of it, and they did it with Al Wilson (Torrie Wilson’s dad). But the difference here is that all of these incidents were storyline based, and did not really happen. Reid Flair really did tragically pass away due to a drug overdose. This was a slap in the face to a true legend like Ric Flair and his family. This was done in bad taste in my opinion.
Eric: No, I don’t feel the WWE was in the wrong. This is a business, here nothing is left untouchable, nothing is safe
Hell we have seen a man have sex with a dead boby, two men almost marry each other, a father sell out his own daughqter just to name a few. This is the entertainment part of the show. It’s all for fun and nothing is left to be sacred
There isn’t really too much of a line. Now, if someone going to having intercourse live on tv now that maybe a lil too much but these stories, but as far as the comments made by Paige about Reid Flair, no I don’t have a problem with it.
Josh: This isn’t that big of a thing. I can definitely see how some would see it in bad taste, however, I am sure that it was run by Charlotte, and even her father and approved. I cannot imagine that it wasn’t. If they are ok with it, I have absolutely no right to be upset.
Chad: I think what is wrong or right has changed with the eras; there was a time that Eddie Guerrero’s death was used in a storyline and I don’t there being a lot of backlash about it. I also that in the age we live in with social media and instant access with things like TMZ fans knew what happened. But at the same time I don’t bringing was up right just because it’s messing with the family and tragedy if were it me I think in this WWE that goes too far.
Todd: Yes I think they went way over board with this one. On the other hand I heard this was charelotte’s idea. Either way I thought WWE should have ask the the parents about this angle before hand. Especially with one of the parents being so close to the business and being the 16 time world heavyweight champion. I thought it was disrespectful to them not to ask the parents about such a sensitive angle. I can understand why Elizabeth was pissed off.
Jim: The WWE will use anything and everything to promote their wrestlers. I think this is s strong story line, that Charlotte is fighting in memory of her brother, who would have been a great wrestler, blah blah blah. In most world’s, it’s too much. In the WWE, nothing is off limits. If it sells tickets, they’ll use it.
Last week on the Frosh Five, Frosh caused a bit of controversy when he stated that Stone Cold Steve Austin was bad for wrestling due to his character changing the dynamic of wrestling with faces and heels. Do you agree with his assessment, and would you have booked Austin any differently in the late 90’s?
Steve: Frosh has a great point. The booking of Austin changed the dynamic of wrestling. No longer was it always going to be a face vs a heel. You have a new demographic in wrestling by having Austin be a tweener. That being said, I would not have booked it any differently. Fans flocked to see him, and with the ratings war with WCW, it was absolutely the right move. So while yes it may have been bad for wrestling in a traditional sense. It was the right move for the WWE.
Eric: After reading the article several times I’ve determined that yes, I agree with Frosh. He makes a valid argument about Stone Cold. I was a huge Stone Cold fan back when he was wrestling but the landscape of the heels and faces has changed so much due to Austin. Frosh makes a very strong and valid point. I don’t think I could have booked Austin any different though. I don’t believe any other character would have gotten him over as much as his Stone Cold gimmick did. So in a sense, yes I agree with Frosh and no I wouldn’t have changed Austin at all.
Josh: The argument stands that he was bad for business, because he was too good at what he did, that no matter what a modern wrestler tries, they will never be able to live up to that greatness. The argument is one hundred percent valid. But, like most will answer, I don’t think anyone in their right mind changes that booking. You just cannot bury someone of that caliber. The cream will always rise to the top. The issue comes in that for WWE 2k16, the cover is of a wrestler who hasn’t wrestled in over a decade. Why can they not put one of their current stars on the cover? Because nobody will sell it as good as Stone Cold will, and the man hasn’t laced up boots in years. And to me, that is still a problem.
Chad: Did Steve Austin blur the lines of good guy vs bad guy? Yes, he did but I think those were the times that we lived in the Late 90’s when things were changing. The Wrestling fan didn’t want to say their prayers and eat their vitamins anymore the wanted to root for what was cool and what was cool in that era? In WCW you had the nWo running roughshot over the whole company and beating everyone which those fans got behind. In the WWF you had a foul-mouthed, beer-swilling, stand up to the boss kind of a guy which everyone can relate to. I have some bad news Frosh…I can’t agree with your stance on this subject
Todd: No! Stone cold help make wrestling what it is today. A lot of times you couldn’t tell if he was a heel or a face. He was certainly a one of a kind though and you will never see another Stone Cold Steve Austin. No I wouldn’t book him any other way.
Jim: Austin was arguably the greatest wrestler ever, in terms of fan love and success. Every wrestler since has striven to reach his success. Of course I disagreed with any contention that he was bad for wrestling. He changed the dynamic. So did Dusty Rhoades. So did Goldberg. So did The Rock. Every great wrestler changes the dynamics. I’m not going to second guess perfection, so no, I wouldn’t have booked him any differently.
Was Roderick Strong the right guy to end Jay Lethal’s 18 month reign as World Television Champion?
Steve: Absolutely, Strong is probably the best wrestler in Ring of Honor right now. Some call him Mr. ROH, and I would not argue that point. I think that Lethal did more for the TV title making it a relevant championship than any other championship in all of wrestling. Having Roderick Strong hold the title and defending it more frequently was exactly the right call.
Eric: Yes, Roderick Strong is “in my damn opinion” Mr. ROH. The man has been there for a long time and done so much for that company. I think it would have been nice to see a younger talent maybe take the title off of Jay Lethal but I’m not disappointed in having Strong win it. I think he is an amazing talent and will go on to defend the title like it should be. It’s the the tv title, it should be defended often on tv, make it worth something. Just please ROH don’t let it became meaningless like the WWE has become with the Intercontinental title.
Josh: Sure, I guess… I mean….who better to do it? Kanyon?
Chad: Roderick Strong is an established guy on the ROH roster that has been there for a while and done a lot with the company though I’m not surprised he was the one to end the reign. I feel for a reign like that win needed to somebody on the roster who needed the win to really elevate himself whether that’s an Adam Cole, Michael Elgin, or somebody else because Strong has established himself as MR. ROH
Todd: yes. Roddy and Jay Lethal have had several great matches for the world title including the 60 minute time limit draw at Death Before Dishonor. He deserves to win the Television Title.
Jim: Roderick Strong couldn’t beat me in a fight. He’s a tiny little boy in a men’s game. His push to success is what’s wrong with wrestling in 2015. They have nobody running the show that understands what is “good for business”. Especially Ring of Honor. It’s such a crap organization.
What were your overall thoughts on the Survivor Series?
Steve: If I am being nice. One Star. The entire show was horrible. Matches were not exciting at all outside of the two semi-final matches. The Divas match was brutal, and the two Survivor Series matches made zero sense. The Undertaker match was okay, but more so because of the crowd reaction. That was probably the match of the night. Even the Ambrose vs Reigns match was not great. Very disappointing show for a major event.
Eric: I enjoyed the Survivor Series. I always enjoy it, it’s one of my favorite ppvs of the year. I do miss the older way when it used to be all traditional 5 on 5 matches but hey at least we got to see 2 matches like that this year. Maybe one year the WWE will go back to that style. The matches were good this past sunday, we saw a new champion and the 25th anniversary of the Undertaker. Lots of good stories told and left doors open for more stories to come. I give the event this past Sunday a grade of C+. Not A worthy but definitely not a failure.
Josh: It was a let down, but the one bright spot is we no longer have to worry about Sheamus carrying money in the bank. At the very least, the two semi final matches were very solid.
Chad: It was OK there have been better Survivor Series over the years I believe that some of it had to do with the timing of the Rollins injury did through the entire card out of whack slightly. I did like how the card and the tribute to the Undertaker by the fans was awesome. The Survivor Series style match could have had a little more drama toward but it def looks like The Lucha Dragons and The Usos are coming after the New Day which could be interesting. My only question is will anybody from the Wyatts win on PPV again?
Todd: Horrible! How WWE set this tournament up was ridiculous from the outset. It was predictable for me anyways. First think I thought when I saw the brackets were its gonna be Ambrose vs Reigns in the finals. The two matches here in the semi-finals Del Rio and Kevin Owens both hold titles so more than likely they will not win the world title. So WWE is gonna give you what the fans want to see Reigns vs Ambrose in the finals, too predictable. The rest of the card was boring. The main event match was way too short. I did not see Shemaus cash in coming but I think it was a huge mistake. I think WWE needs to take Survivor Series back to its tradition where they only have the 5 on 5 elimination matches. Thats what Survivor Series is all about. That’s my biggest disappointment from this Survivor Series and the past few years.
Jim: I actually enjoyed Survivor Series. I’ll never get all the results I wanted, but that’s wrestling. I’m not the writer. If I were, it would be a better show. But it was one of the better PPV’s this year.
Was it the right time to put the WWE Championship on Sheamus? Do you feel it was out of desperation after Rollins got injured?
Steve: To be honest, I don’t think any time would be a right time to put the belt on Sheamus. The guy has no following, the fans are not getting behind him as a heel, and he had better luck as a face. This was Reigns’ best time and best chance to carry the championship. The only way this makes any sense at all is to have Reigns win the title at TLC, and they just wanted to get the briefcase off of Sheamus. I have no problem with Sheamus, but his character is an upper mid-card at best.
Eric: I think it was out of desperation that the WWE put the title on Sheamus this past Sunday. WWE was going hay wire once Rollins got hurt. Rollins was their top heel and they already had several months of storylines setup that included him now they were scrambling trying to put something together and they thought it was best to have Sheamus cash in his Money in the Bank. It worked though, it gave fans that surprise factor we all love. Now we shall see how the rest of the stories will plan out. Personally, I don’t really care for Sheamus but he was the only choice wwe had as far as becoming the top heel and being champion for the time being.
Josh: The right time to put the belt on Sheamus would have been in about 1987, and have him feud with Hogan….They can yell “Brother” and “Fella” at each other for hours, and then just big boot each other for the pin. It would have been great.
Chad: I 150% feel like the move to do the Roman win and celebration and then the Sheamus cash in was solely based on the need to have something happen due to the Rollins injury. I think it was done to slide Sheamus into Rollins role as the guy in the Authority
Todd: Hell No! There was Never a right time to put the title on Shemaus. If there was a right time he would already be wearing the title. This was not out of desperation this was out of stupidity. Desperation would have been some kind of heel turn by Ambrose or Reigns. This ganging up on on babyface by the authority is getting old. We seen this shit before.
Jim: Are you kidding me? Del Rio shows his face again and gets a belt. Pasty white boy with zero talent and one f**king move gets a belt? Did you see the crowd’s reaction when Reigns won the belt? Did you hear the thunder in the arena? The WWE doesn’t give care ****ing one about their fans. They pushed Rollins after a BS win with his briefcase, and now we get another year of the same garbage BS crap. There are 50 wrestlers on the roster with more talent than Shaemus. I’d rather see Paige as the champion. At least fans like her.
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