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WWE Royal Rumble 2015 Thoughts

Tonight from WWE Headquarters in Stamford, CT; Booker T and Michael Cole agreed last night’s Royal Rumble was a night to remember.

While the above statement is true, the annual event in question will be remembered – but for the wrong reasons.

Wrestlemania season is supposed to start with a bang. New stars receive fresh starts with memorable moments and old ones get to bask in their nostalgic glory if only for a moment.

Instead for the second year in a row, the WWE Universe was not happy with their order both figuratively and literally.

While the Royal Rumble match itself did have its moments (such as Buh Buh Ray Dudley and Diamond Dallas Page making  returns that popped the crowd), the contest was booked very predictably with very little direction other than to highlight its winner Roman Reigns.

The contest started out well with surprise appearances, some nice feud teasing and immense potential. The Wyatts brawled with each other, Bray dominated the match and DDP dropped the Diamond Cutter like a man on fire. Daniel Bryan, the obvious fan favorite made his way to the ring at number 10 and immediately started hanging and banging with the best of them.

For about 10 minutes before he was unceremoniously eliminated.

That took the air out of the building faster than the New England Patriots.

Shortly after Reigns entered and the rest of the match was booed worse than last year.

WWE pulled all the stops to reverse the fans polarity, even having The Rock do a run-in to aid his real-life cousin Reigns, but even that was rejected.

For the love of God the fans were chanting for Rusev, a man whose character is a Russian sympathizer on American programming.

The saving grace of Royal Rumble was the Triple Threat World Heavyweight Championship between Seth Rollins, John Cena, and  Brock Lesnar – who defended his championship in one of the best matches of each combatants careers.

Rollins’ ability is incredible as he demonstrated why he is the future, utilizing the psychology and dimensions of the match to his advantage.

Lesnar also played the odd man out to a “t,” double teaming his opponents and watching his back while laying waste to them at opportune times.

Cena also hit every aspect of the hero, but not in the force-fed way he usually is portrayed. This time around, it was believable and told a great story. Hats off to the three of them with hopes of this angle continuing in the near future.

The New Day vs. Cesaro and Tyson Kidd with Adam Rose was a decent warm up with a lot of very high spots. The finish was exciting as Cesaro and Kidd got the surprise win with great old-school heel tactics. Please give these men a shot at the titles.

Speaking of titles, The Usos worked another exciting match against The Miz and Mizdow for the Tag Team Championships. A lot of fun, but we’ve seen this already. The Usos need a new team to feud with.

Speaking of new teams, The Ascension defeated the New Age Outlaws in a quick match that unfortunately did nothing for either team. While it’s always nice to see The Outlaws, The Ascension were treated like toys on the previous Raw when the Outlaws and a slew of non-active wrestlers manhandled them in addition to their horrendous debut last month and childish promos. Hopefully these guys can be salvaged.

Speaking of things that can be salvaged (this is the last time, scout’s honor), The Divas tag match was much better than expected. The Bellas looked strong, but Paige and Natalya didn’t look like pushovers either. Paige was mostly left out of the match minus some quick action and a non-PG cover on Brie Bella, but this could be the seed for Paige vs. Nikki Bella for the Divas Championship.

Despite a major hiccup in the Rumble itself, the 2015 Royal Rumble event was OK; but just OK and that is a problem.

While we did have a few good matches, fun moments, and a show-stopping Championship bout, we got a lackluster main event that flopped on all cylinders. The issue with the Rumble was not who won, but how he won. When Big Show and Kane began literally dumping key players like Ziggler, Ambrose and Wyatt over the top rope without said key players even trying to fight back, there was no drama, and therefore no reason to continue watching. No drama equals no entertainment, and when your audience is not entertained, they don’t care about the product.

WWE Royal Rumble 2015 Predictions

Another WWE calendar has come and gone and it’s time to start ‘Mania season off with a bang at this years Royal  Rumble installment. 30 men will enter, one man will leave with a Wrestlemania opportunity upon his victory in the rumble match but for the heck of it, here is what we’d like to think would happen in the 2015 Royal Rumble event.

Kickoff Match: The New Day vs. Cesaro, Tyson Kidd and Adam Rose – Even though the unlikely trio of Cesaro, Kidd and Rose have had their way with The New Day over the past few weeks, Despite Cesaro and Kidd being a newly formed team, The New Day is the stable that WWE is pushing so for that reason alone they will be the victors with an entertaining match to boot.

The New Age Outlaws vs.The Ascension – As is above will be so below.  The Outlaws are a classic tag team frozen in time. They have and always will be incredible to watch. Again, The Ascension is the team receiving the push so it is more than likely that the overall decision will be for Konnor and Viktor rather than The Outlaws – who are well established and have nothing left to prove.

Tag Team Championship Match: The Usos (c) vs.The Miz and Mizdow – The Miz and Mizdow will invoke their re-match clause against The Usos, but it will do them no good as the obvious dissent in The Miz and Mizdows team is consistantly growing while The Usos brotherly bond remains consistent. Chances are that The Usos will retain their championships over some sort of “Miz” communication.

Paige and Natalya vs. The Bella Twins – While Paige claims she doesn’t need any assistance, Natalya begs to differ. While the two have proven their worth against Nikki Bella and her Divas Championship, Nattie’s hubby Tyson Kidd  proves to be the wild card in this feud;  often costing the woman he assists her match by hogging the spotlight. in short: there are too many variables for The Bellas to win than there are to lose.

The 2015 Royal Rumble Match – This is the meat and potatoes of the event. While it will be fun to see who enters in what order (and whatever surprises WWE has in store), our final four will see Daniel Bryan, Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose and either Bray Wyatt, Dolph Ziggler, Big Show, Rusev or Ryback. As far as the actual winner is concerned, it is a three way tie between Reigns, Bryan, and Ambrose. Ambrose is of course the wild card and the least likely of the three to win,  but it would be nice to see the WWE take a chance on the unstable young wolf. Bryan would be the safest bet to get the storybook ending he deserved last year as he seemingly has not skipped a beat in his injury related absence, but we feel like WWE will stick with what the dirt sheets have claimed to be “the original plan” and will decide Reigns your 2015 Royal Rumble winner.

Triple Threat WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match: Brock Lesnar (c) vs. John Cena vs. Seth Rollins – Thank God Rollins is in this match because nobody wanted to see Lesnar vs. Cena for the third consecutive time. Not only does the inclusion of Rollins benefit the match from being another predictable “John Cena overcomes the odds story” but it also enhances the match itself with a wacky scenario: not only does Lesnar not have to get beat to lose his championship but Rollins can immediately cash in his Money in the Bank briefcase after the match itself if he chooses. If we were betting men we would say Cena wins (again), but we would not be surprised if Rollins or Lesnar walks out with gold around their waist.

The Ascension’s Debut a “Raw” Deal

We saw them grow on NXT.

They were ready.

For a good month we saw old school vignettes hyping the Raw debut of The Ascension. A team that demolished and pulverized every superstar on NXT for two years, holding the NXT Tag Team Championships for a record 364 days. Konner and Viktor were more than poised to unleash hell on the WWE locker room.

Then the actual debut happened.

Edge and Christian put a freshly dethroned Miz and Mizdow in a tag match against The Ascension that resulted in a quick and predictable squash match. The match itself was fine, but The Ascension deserved better than that.

They beat a team who had just lost their Tag Team Championships under an hour ago.

How are we to believe that The Ascension are unstoppable monsters if their first match in the big leagues is against two guys who just lost?

The best debut would have been a mere tease.

As soon as The Uso’s regained their Tag Team Championships from Miz and Mizdow, Jimmy Uso’s real-life wife Naomi came out and celebrated with them in the ring, creating a feel good moment for the WWE Universe.

What better time could it have been to have The Ascension standing on the entrance ramp staring them down, eyeing the coveted gold in the arms of the new champions?

While it’s no doubt that The Ascension will rise to the top of the mountain, they debuted with a whimper rather than the bang they deserved.

WWE TLC 2014 Thoughts

wwe tlc 2014

As usual, WWE ended 2014 with a bang. Unfortunately, that bang was in the form of an exploding TV that cost Dean Ambrose his TLC match against Bray Wyatt.

Ambrose gave Wyatt the beating of his life, elbow dropping his opponent through a table from a ladder multiple times before finding a TV under the ring. The TV was not only plugged in, but it also gave Ambrose the idea to go for the biggest ladder he could carry. He then dropped the big elbow off that giant ladder onto Wyatt through the Spanish announcer’s table.

Dragging Wyatt into the ring, Ambrose readied to finish him off with the TV, but it was plugged in and prevented the blow. Then it exploded after Ambrose tried again. Wyatt then hit Sister Abigail and that was all she wrote.

Two things can be said of this. One: who leaves a TV under the ring? And two: there is no way any of us are to believe someone can be that stupid.

The Kickoff match was well done with Goldust and Stardust really delivering their offense and executing their heel tactics beautifully. They get better every night. The New Day predictably got the win, but the match was solid. Hats off to these teams for getting the crowd pumped up.

Dolph Ziggler and Luke Harper put on the match of the night in an excellent Ladder match with Ziggler stealing the show and the Intercontinental Championship in his home city.

The Miz and Damien Mizdow had a decent encounter with the Uso’s for the Tag Team Championship with a logical DQ finish. The inclusion of Jimmy Uso’s real life wife Naomi into the storyline is interesting and will add real life situations into play if done right. Mizdow is slowly becoming a fan favorite with his antics and will hopefully get his shining moment down the road.

The Divas Championship match was also a decent match with a logical conclusion of Brie Bella’s interference and Nikki Bella taking advantage of a referee’s blind spot with a foreign object.

The Steel Stairs match between Big Show and Erick Rowan was much better than expected with good use of the stairs. This was a tough match to work but the two superstars did a great job with what they had.

Kane and Ryback’s Chairs match on the other hand, was pretty boring and predictable. Ryback was dominant, lots of chair shots and way too long.

Jack Swagger and Rusev’s United States Championship encounter also was very predictable. It’s clear that there are big plans for Rusev, but the “foreign oppressor vs. patriot” angle is getting old. We need to see more layers to the Rusev character.

Last but not least, John Cena once again overcame the odds and defeated Seth Rollins in a Tables match – securing his number one contender spot to face Brock Lesnar for the WWE Championship yet again.

You didn’t have to watch WWE programming since SummerSlam to figure that out.

It is nice to see Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury playing the parts of Rollin’s lackey’s perfectly. These guys were the best part of the match.

It was also nice to see Roman Reigns back in action as he saved the day for Cena and is moving into a nice feud with Big Show for the time being. Having said that, Reigns returning at the pay-per-view before the Royal Rumble was a mistake as he would have had a much better reaction at the Rumble en-route to victory.

Perhaps WWE is saving that reaction for the return of Daniel Bryan.

WWE TLC 2014 Predictions

Another year has come and gone which means Wrestlemania season is just around the corner. As is tradition, WWE will make sure 2014 goes out with a bang in this year’s installment of their annual TLC pay-per-view. Below are our predictions for the winners of each match.

The New Day vs. Goldust and Stardust (TLC Kickoff)– While the cosmic duo sets its sights on the darkening of The New Day, we at The Bonesaw feel that since The New Day has debuted very recently, it is likely that they will prevail against the brothers Dust. Expect a good back and forth with plenty of tag team twists and turns as both teams have great chemistry with their partners and deliver unique offenses. The one variable is which two members of The New Day will be doing the brawling. Our money’s on Big E and Kofi Kingston due to their more direct confrontations with Gold and Stardust.

Nikki Bella (c) vs. AJ Lee (Divas Championship Match) – A re-match for the championship that should (hopefully) last longer than their Survivor Series encounter. These two young women will make the match as interesting as they can with the time they are given but it a tough call due to the constant flip-flopping of the title. History tells us Lee will regain her championship, but we predict Bella. One thing’s for sure: sister Brie will have some involvement in the outcome.

The Miz and Damien Mizdow (c) vs. The Uso’s (WWE Tag Team Championships Match) – A tag match that will be entertaining due to The Uso’s hybrid style and Mizdow’s hilarious antics. Chances are the champions will retain, but just barely as The Uso’s will outmaneuver the self proclaimed “A-lister” and his goofy “stunt double.”

Luke Harper (c) vs. Dolph Ziggler (Ladder Match for the Intercontinental Championship) – Ladder matches are notorious for death-defying spots and hard hitting action. Harper and Ziggler will put their bodies on the line with an intense showing of instestinal fortitude. The two rising stars will put on a heart-stopping clinic  that will culminate in Ziggler winning back his championship.

Rusev (c) vs. Jack Swagger (United States Championship Match) –  Aside from their characters being natural enemies, Rusev and Swagger have shown great chemistry in their feud. TLC will be no different when stars, stripes and sickles clash again for the United States championship. The Bonesaw believes Rusev will again conquer the good ol’ U.S. of A. – but would enjoy seeing Swagger knock off the Bulgarian Brute as it would greatly benefit his career.

Ryback vs. Kane (Chairs Match) – The inclusion of a Chairs Match is very unnecessary in any circumstance. The feud of Ryback and Kane is probably a short placeholder that would fare better with a regular match or a no-disqualification stipulation. The match will be decent if it is not given too much time. If we see more than 10 minutes, this could turn into a stinker. It is very likely that Ryback will continue his rampage.

Erick Rowan vs. Big Show (Steel Stairs Match) – Similar to Ryback vs. Kane, this very shoehorned in match with a steel stars stipulation rather than chairs might be decent if given a short length. Fans would much rather see Rowan battle his former tag team partner Harper, but it is what it is. The Big Show is almost a lock to win this one.

Dean Ambrose vs. Bray Wyatt (Tables Ladders & Chairs Match) – This match will steal the show. It will be as violent as PG programming will allow and the in-ring psychology will tell a fantastic story. Wyatt will endure the beating of his life, but The Eater of Worlds will defeat the unstable one in order for the feud to continue. The promos alone are too good to stop this freight train now.

 John Cena vs. Seth Rollins (Tables Match) – It should be noted that should Cena lose, he also loses his no. 1 contender spot against Brock Lesnar for the WWE title. Not to Rollins, but to an unknown  challenger to be announced at a later date. Seeing as Rollins is in possession of the Money in the Bank briefcase, the match is more about a notch on his belt as he will get his championship match whenever and wherever he likes until the next Money in the Bank pay-per-view. It will be a hard fought battle and a great main event, but chances are Cena will find his can of spinach and emerge victorious yet again. Having said that, we really hope Rollins wins.

It’s Sting! WWE Survivor Series Thoughts

Survivor Series 2014 posterAt Survivor Series this past Sunday the unthinkable happened: Sting stepped foot in a WWE ring.

All looked bleak for Team Cena as Dolph Ziggler was beaten down by The Authority’s Seth Rollins, Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury before suffering a pedigree from Triple H. Team Authority had done it. All they had to do was have the ref. count to three.

Suddenly the sound of crows flapping and cawing filled the arena and the last man anyone suspected walked through the curtain.

The Icon had arrived.

Sting slowly made his way to the squared circle and engaged in a long staredown with The Game before taking him out with the Scorpion Death Drop. He then took the fallen Ziggler and laid him over an unconscious Rollins for not only Team Cena’s victory but the end of The Authority’s reign of terror.

This was done extremely well. Despite internet rumors circulating throughout the weekend WWE did an excellent job of keeping Sting under wraps.

Besides, would anyone have believed Sting to ever truly make an appearance in a story arc that had nothing to do with him?

The most likely candidate for interference in the match was Randy Orton, who had had a falling out with The Authority in several weeks Prior to the match.

Although the rest of the event was mostly decent, we all knew this was the only match that really felt like it mattered.

Dean Ambrose’s encounter with Bray Wyatt was a nice showing of a long feud to come. The match was a solid back and forth until the end, where the use of tables, ladders and chairs blatantly set up the real match at next month’s TLC event.

A Fatal Four Way Tag Team Championships match was a nice choice for an opener that featured some great spots and a surprise win for The Miz and Mizdow. It seems as if the new “Hollywood A-lister” and his stunt double gimmicks are breathing new life into the careers of these young talents.

Adam Rose’s match was a pointless match that was thrown together at the last minute. The bunny was funny for a little while but now it seems everyone just wants Rose to “kill the wabbit”. If Rose’s character can be more vicious like Leo Kruger was, he might be able to get over with the fans.

Last but not least, the Divas matches were weak for opposing reasons. The Survivor Series Elimination match was way too long while the Divas Championship match was way too short (33 seconds, really?). AJ Lee can go and Nikki Bella has improved a lot over the years. They have too much ability to be squandered and should have had at least 10 minutes to give the people something to care about. Also, does a common enemy make a person forget about all the grief someone has given them over the past month? If so, then what creates the urge to kiss said person’s opponent as a distraction?

Having said that, the main event was a great one as many stories were told that will set up interesting angles over the next few months into Wrestlemania season. The surprise of Sting saving the day made the show as a whole that much more special as it is not just something fans will remember for a long time but one of the last few times we will ever see something like this again.