WWE Great Balls of Fire 2017 Review

Prediction score: 5-3

Goodness gracious Great Balls of Fire was the best pay-per-view of 2017. There wasn’t a bad match on the card, and looks to be a good set up on RAW’s end for SummerSlam. I was there live and the hype of being there live made a great pay-per-view fantastic. WWE needs to try to do pay-per-views like this more often, minimal shenanigans and having just a good, solid night of wrestling. Braun Strowman is indestructible and Roman Reigns will face the beast incarnate for the WWE Universal Championship (fingers crossed Roman gets suplexed into pudding). Did you miss out of Great Balls of Fire? Don’t worry because here is my match by match review for WWE Great Balls of Fire 2017.

PRESHOW: Neville def. Akira Tozawa for the Cruiserweight Championship

I wished this match was on the main show but this match was a good way to pump up the crowd for the night. Neville and Tozawa exchanged some stiff shots but we all knew that there was no way Neville was losing this match. But the finish was a kick to the gut? Really? No Red Arrow? Oh well, Neville won and could be holding onto the belt for ages.

Bray Wyatt def. Seth Rollins

This was a great match but nobody knows why they’re fighting. Honestly, these two are genuine main eventers and they were basically put into a feud because the writers had nothing planned for them. I hope that the writers try to make something out of this feud, give them a reason as to why they’re fighting. If we can’t tell why they’re fighting, then we won’t invest into the feud. The match had good action and Bray Wyatt unexpectedly won. Great!

Big Cass def. Enzo Amore

This was a massacre. Enzo came out and cut a very impassioned promo talking about how he won’t go down without a fight and called Cass “SAWFT”. Then out came Cass and he had the worst music ever. I mean nails on a chalkboard sounded better than Cass’s new song. Then Cass proceeded to annihilate poor Enzo Amore. This match’s purpose is to get Cass over as a heel. I hope that Enzo isn’t completely scrapped after this feud. That promo showed that Enzo has potential.

THIRTY MINUTE IRON MAN MATCH FOR THE WWE RAW TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS: Sheamus and Cesaro def. The Hardy Boyz 4-3

This is the match of the night in many people’s eyes, and I could see why. It was pretty cool during their entrance when Sheamus and Cesaro did the fusion from Dragon Ball Z. That means from now on I’ll call them “Sheamaro”. Sheamaro got the first fall twenty seconds in and things got uglier from there. During the match the Hardys hit a double team move on Sheamus and it seemed that the ref counted the three but the fall never counted, causing the crowd to chant “This ref sucks”. The ending was pretty confusing. Jeff Hardy hit a Swanton onto Sheamus, then Cesaro came in and pinned Jeff (apparently Sheamus made a tag but nobody saw it, even the crowd). That was a screwy finish but that doesn’t change the fact that Sheamaro and the Hardys are the best teams on RAW and I can’t wait to see what happens at SummerSlam.

WWE RAW WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Sasha Banks def. Alexa Bliss by countout.

While people may be upset by the fact that Sasha didn’t leave Dallas with the belt, this keeps the feud going into SummerSlam, and could possibly include Nia Jax. They could both go to Angle grumbling about a fair match with Alexa. This match showed just how good Alexa is. She may not be a ring general but she is a fantastic actress and has her character nailed down. Her taking the countout loss makes her a better heel. I’m intrigued by her feud with Sasha but I hope she doesn’t just completely ruin Sasha like she ruined Bayley.

WWE INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: The Miz def. Dean Ambrose

At the start of this match I went to go get merch. We’ve seen this match for about a bajillion times and I already knew how it was going to play out. Dean starts to get the upper hand, shenanigans ensue, skull crushing finale. What the heck was Bo Dallas wearing? He looked like he was trying to dress up like a rock star pirate. Completely ridiculous. The match wasn’t bad it’s just that we need fresh feuds. WWE, please give Miz a new opponent for SummerSlam.

AMBULANCE MATCH: Braun Strowman def. Roman Reigns

I loved everything about this match. Hats off to Roman & Braun for putting themselves through hell for our entertainment because honesty that stuff looked like it hurt. Lots of weapon shots and big power moves throughout. Braun was casually no-selling chair shots from Reigns which I thought was pretty funny. When they got to the stage, I was a bit let down that Braun didn’t put Roman through the announce table, but Braun needs to watch out for Booker T’s shoes. They were really nice shoes. Roman put Braun through the screen which I didn’t expect to be so thin. The finish I kind of called in my predictions. Roman would hit a spear through the ambulance, but he missed. It was like Braun threw a bone in the ambulance and since Roman is the big dog, went in to find it then Braun closed the door. After Strowman won, Roman came out and speared Braun because Roman realized there wasn’t a bone in the ambulance. Then Roman drove the ambulance backstage and crashed it into a truck. WWE, are you sure Roman isn’t a heel? He got mad he lost and tried to kill Braun Strowman. Sounds like a heel to me.

Heath Slater def. Curt Hawkins

Nobody cares about this match. The crowd chanted “We want Balor” and those watching on the network didn’t even see the finish of the match. (Heath rolled Hawkins up). The fans instead saw a US Air Force fire department pry the ambulance open then a bloody Braun Strowman came out, refused medical help and walked away on his own power. Braun Strowman is indestructible.

WWE UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Brock Lesnar def. Samoa Joe

Holy crap. This match may have been short but it was intense from bell to bell. Brock Lesnar is gigantic in person and I am convinced that if you look up the word “Strong” in the dictionary you see Brock Lesnar hitting a grizzly bear an F5. Joe attacked Lesnar before the bell and right from the get-go was assaulting the beast. Joe put Lesnar through the announce table and then Brock slowly got up and was dominated by Joe. Joe had the coquina clutch locked in and I was convinced that Joe was gonna choke Brock out. I can’t remember the last time I was on the edge of my seat throughout a wrestling match. Brock made a comeback with german suplexes but Joe kept slipping on the clutch. I called the finish of this match in my predictions, Joe had the clutch in then Brock escaped and hit an F5. Brock is still the universal champion and he will be facing Roman Reigns at SummerSlam. If you think Joe is buried, he isn’t. This program with Lesnar if anything established Joe as a main eventer and you can expect a universal title run down the line.

Match of the Night

The match of the night is hard for me to pick because there wasn’t a bad match throughout. My favorite match was Joe-Lesnar, but the best match overall would have to go to the iron man match. There wasn’t a dull moment in the match and the Hardys fought valiantly. Despite the ref shenanigans, this match was fantastic and I can’t wait to see what’s next for these two teams.

Overall Review

This was hands down the best pay-per-view of 2017. WWE kept the shenanigans to a minimum and just had a fantastic night of wrestling. Every match was on fire and helped tell the stories that needed to be told. The fact that I was there live just makes this an even better pay-per-view than it already was. I would rate this pay-per-view a 9/10. This show was amazing from start to finish and the only thing wrong with it was that there was no point in having a throwaway match if the people watching on the network could’ve seen it all. Aside from that, it was a solid night of wrestling, minimum shenanigans and great storytelling. Smackdown has a lot of work to do for Battleground to compete with Great Balls of Fire.

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WWE GREAT BALLS OF FIRE 2017 PREDICTIONS

By: Danny Kown

                Yes Great Balls of Fire is the actual name for this pay-per-view, and I guess Vince is a big fan of the fifties. This looks to be a decent show and we’ll get to see who is going to fight Roman Reigns at SummerSlam. I’m more excited for this pay-per-view because I’ll be there live. This is my second WWE show I’ve attended (I was at WrestleMania 32). Wrestling fans rejoice because we’ll get to see one of the biggest WWE dream matches: Samoa Joe vs Brock Lesnar. I can’t wait for Sunday and here are my predictions for WWE Great Balls of Fire 2017.

 

Preshow: Cruiserweight Championship Match: Neville vs Akira Tozawa.

Does anyone believe Tozawa is going to win here? If you say “yes”, then please quit lying. As good as Tozawa is, nobody is beating Neville anytime soon. I expect some Titus shenanigans to cost Tozawa the match.

Prediction: Neville

WWE RAW WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Alexa Bliss vs Sasha Banks

Sasha is getting a title shot! YAY! Sasha is the best women’s wrestler on RAW and deserves the championship. I don’t think Sasha wins the belt as a babyface. If she turned heel I would be 100% behind Sasha. If I were booking this, I would have Alexa win by some shenanigans, maybe an interference from Nia Jax to set up a triple threat at SummerSlam. Shenanigans or not, Bliss walks out of Dallas with the belt.

Prediction: Alexa Bliss

Seth Rollins vs Bray Wyatt

Since Bray Wyatt came to Monday Night Raw he hasn’t done much of anything. He was in the fatal 5 way at Extreme Rules, but he got taken out by Reigns. Bray came out on Raw and called himself a God and telling people to believe in him kind of like him going back to his original cult leader gimmick. Bray Wyatt can’t be taken seriously if he comes out speaks in parables and then gets the snot knocked out of him. That is terrible booking because Bray is over with the crowd, he’s one of the best wrestlers on the mic, and he’s great in the ring. Seth Rollins is in the same situation as Bray because he’s fought Samoa Joe every other week. Seth & Bray could put on a great match and I’m excited to see whether or not Seth could slay a “God”. Let’s hope that Seth & Bray get some better booking after Great Balls of Fire.

Prediction: Seth Rollins

INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Dean Ambrose vs The Miz

Goodness gravy we get this match for the umpteenth time. Except this time, Miz has Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel with Maryse in his corner. Miz & Ambrose aren’t bad workers it’s just that we’ve seen this match so many times. I don’t think Dean should’ve gone to Raw in the superstar shakeup because we’re seeing the same stuff Dean was doing on Smackdown. Just putting a fresh coat of paint on a broken down car doesn’t make it any better than it already was. Let’s hope after this match we’ll see some fresh feuds for Dean and Miz.

Prediction: The Miz

Ambulance Match: Roman Reigns vs Braun Strowman

Roman Reigns declared that he will face the Universal Champion at SummerSlam, then got destroyed by Braun Strowman. Roman could fight Brock at SummerSlam which means that there’s a 90% chance that Roman is going to win at Great Balls of Fire. This match is going to be a train wreck. Lots of power moves and weapon shots. I expect Braun to dominate most of the match then Roman makes his comeback and then spears Braun through the ambulance door while being showered with boos.

Prediction: (Unfortunately) Roman Reigns.

Enzo Amore vs Big Cass

We finally know who Enzo’s mystery attacker was and I didn’t expect it to be Cass. Right as we recovered from Kevin Owens betraying Jericho, we get Big Cass kicking Enzo in the teeth. I think WWE enjoy breaking the fans’ hearts. Big Cass is Vince’s next pet project and we all thought that Enzo would be Cass’s manager, so they can keep the whole “SAWFT” schtick. Now Cass and Enzo are going their own separate ways and this match isn’t going to be very good. Cass isn’t the best and Enzo hasn’t really proven himself in the ring. This is going to be a quick squash to get Cass over as a heel.

Prediction: Big Cass

30 MINUTE IRON MAN MATCH FOR THE WWE RAW TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS: The Hardys vs Sheamus & Cesaro

This match could steal the show. We have the two best tag teams on raw competing in a 30 minute iron man match for the tag team titles. This is supposed to be the big blowoff match in their feud, so I wouldn’t bet on a title change here at Great Balls of Fire. This is going to be a fight to the finish, but Sheamus & Cesaro are going to be the dominant heel tag team going into SummerSlam. Maybe the finish will have some shenanigans, like Cesaro pulling on Matt or Jeff’s pants. The loss would maybe spark Matt becoming broken. We can only hope to see Broken Matt Hardy at SummerSlam, but probably not.

Prediction: Sheamus & Cesaro

WWE UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Samoa Joe vs Brock Lesnar

Here we are, the main event. The big reason people are going to this pay-per-view, Samoa Joe vs Brock Lesnar. When Joe signed with WWE, everyone wanted him to face Brock Lesnar. This is a WrestleMania worthy match, but we’re getting it on a B pay-per-view. I don’t care if it’s on Raw, I’m so hyped for this match. We’re going to see two 800 pound grizzly bears fighting for their territory. Which will prevail Will Dallas become Suplex City or will Joe burn it to the ground? This match isn’t going to be very long because Joe & Lesnar are two overpowering monsters and I expect to see Joe give Lesnar a fight, but Brock will prevail. I say Joe gets the coquina clutch in, then Brock counters it into an F5 for the win.

Prediction: Brock Lesnar

WWE Money in the Bank 2017 Review

Money in the Bank is in the books and it was certainly historic. The women’s Money in the Bank ladder match was won by a dude. Yep. James Ellsworth is Ms. Money in the Bank. I told you we’d get Naomi-Ellsworth.. Maria Kanellis came back and basically made out with Mike Bennett. So she’s a heel although she got a big pop? Dumb. This is a night ruined with awful finishes but we got two bright sides: Jinder is still champion and Baron Corbin is Mr. Money in the Bank. Let’s wade through this night of bad with a match by match review for WWE Money in the Bank 2017.

Prediction Score: 4-2

PRESHOW: The Hype Bros def. The Colóns

Ah the preshow. The time where people file in, buy some merch, get their drinks and get ready for some wrestling. Oh, and there’s a preshow match too. Does anyone really care about this match? My TV didn’t because it was buffering every five seconds during this match. This match had the return of Zack Ryder and he didn’t look bad in this match. The main purpose of this match is to reestablish the hype bros as a formidable tag team. The Hype Bros won, and maybe this will be the start to a bright future for Mojo Rawley.

WOMEN’S MONEY IN THE BANK LADDER MATCH: Carmella def. Charlotte, Becky Lynch, Tamina, and Natalya

I didn’t expect this match to kick off the show. Also, what in the name of all that is sacred is James Ellsworth wearing? He’s wearing sweats that are 5 sizes too big and I laughed when he came out. This match sent a message to RAW and showed how to properly book the women’s division. This match wasn’t that bad and told the story that it could be anyone’s match. Then the finish happened. Oh good God. James Ellsworth, AKA the living embodiment of everything that is awful, climbed the ladder and handed the briefcase to Carmella. This takes the cake for the worst finish to a pay-per-view match not just of 2017, but of the decade.

 

 

WWE SMACKDOWN LIVE TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: The New Day def. The Usos

Two matches in, two crappy finishes. I admit that this finish keeps the feud going and sets up a title match at battleground where there most likely would be no countouts. The Usos dominated for the most part until the end when the New Day caught a second wind. Just as it looked like New Day were about to win, The Usos took the belts and walked out. Back to back Smackdown pay-per-views with a title match ending in a countout. Great booking right there. This match was actually good up until the end. This is the only way to keep the New Day Strong without giving them the belts. Maybe New Day will get the tag titles at the next pay-per-view.

WWE SMACKDOWN LIVE WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Naomi def. Lana

The fans wanted Lana, and now we’ve gotten Lana. Nobody knew what to expect from Lana because this is her first match in WWE since WrestleMania 32. The fans throughout the match started chanting “WE WANT RUSEV”. Unfortunately, the network started buffering during this match. I liked Lana’s suplex and Naomi’s feet hit the rope, and Naomi selling her leg injury. Then Carmella came out and teased a cash-in mid match. Naomi countered Lana’s sitout spinebuster into a submission and made Lana tap. Then Carmella walked away. Now the question is when is Carmella going to cash in?

WWE CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Jinder Mahal def. Randy Orton

For some reason before this match WWE honored legends in St. Louis. Guys like Baron Von Ratsche, Sgt. Slaughter, Ric Flair, and Cowboy Bob Orton were all recognized. Maybe WWE will do this for every show? Probably not. Anyway, the match started out the same way as their Backlash encounter, with Orton completely dominating the start of the match. In the early part of the match, Jinder only got one move in offensively before he started working on Randy’s leg. It was a good way to get heat on Jinder when he hit Orton with the figure four leg lock with Ric Flair at ringside. Of course there was Singh brother shenanigans. Randy hit the RKO and the Singhs grabbed Jinder’s foot and put it on the bottom rope. Then they distracted the ref by trash talking legends outside the ring and even grabbed Bob Orton. Then just like at Backlash, Randy kicked the tar out of the Singhs. Then once Orton got back into the ring, Jinder hits the Kalas and retained. If WWE wanted to book Jinder as a strong champion, he needs to have some clean wins sprinkled in with the shenanigans.

Breezango vs The Ascension

Who trashed Breezango’s office and attacked Tyler Breeze? The Ascension. I love the Ascension. They come out to death metal and wear face paint. What more could you ask for? This match was a filler match because WWE went through five of the six advertised matches in about an hour and a half. It was a fairly decent match and Fandango rolled up Viktor for the win. Well, it was nice to see The Ascension while it lasted. See you guys in the Andre the Giant Battle Royal.

MEN’S WWE MONEY IN THE BANK LADDER MATCH: Baron Corbin def. AJ Styles, Shinsuke Nakamura, Kevin Owens, Dolph Ziggler and Sami Zayn

WWE is finally doing something right with a winner of the Andre the Giant Battle Royal as Baron Corbin is now Mr. Money in the Bank. Corbin immediately became the most hated man on Smackdown when he annihilated Nakamura before the match even started. This match is a spotfest as to be expected with multiperson ladder matches. The best spot of the match goes to either Sami Zayn hitting Ziggler with a sunset-flip powerbomb off of the top of the ladder, or AJ hitting Owens with an Attitude Adjustment off of the apron and onto a ladder. Nakamura eventually came back and went right after Corbin to the crowd’s delight. From this point, it’s all Nakamura, hitting everyone in sight with his sledgehammer knees. Then Nakamura and AJ Styles face off, something a year and a half in the making. It’s just AJ and Nakamura whaling each other with stiff strikes. Eventually, AJ and Shinsuke are fighting over the briefcase, then Corbin from out of nowhere pushed over the ladder and won himself a free title match. It’s only a matter of time before Baron Corbin takes his rightful place as WWE Champion.

OVERALL REVIEW

What hurts this pay-per-view is that the finishes of three big matches weren’t decisive. Mahal had the Singhs, Carmella had Ellsworth, and The Usos won by countout. Also, Breezango got the pee break match spot on the card which they do not deserve. I don’t like how there recently WWE has been using countout finishes to help the heel champions retain. Also, every championship in WWE are being currently held by heels except for the Smackdown Women’s title. The match of the night goes to the men’s Money in the Bank ladder match. The match was full of carnage and it looked like anyone could have won the brief case. We now know who hold the briefcases, and I can’t wait to see Baron Corbin cash in his briefcase. The end of days will soon be coming to Smackdown Live. I would rate Money in the Bank at a 6 out of 10. There were too many muddy finishes for one pay-per-view, and it didn’t help that these matches had championship implications. I don’t like how WWE had back to back Smackdown pay-per-views that had some dusty finishes in important matches. Countout matches are acceptable when the match isn’t for the title. I hope that WWE gets their act together when Battleground comes around.

WWE Money in the Bank 2017 Predictions

By: Danny Kown

                Money in the bank is here and it is one of WWE’s most exciting pay-per-views. It leaves genuine intrigue into who is going to win the ladder match and usually guarantees the winner a reign with the WWE championship. I was hoping that RAW would get a money in the bank ladder match, but the winner would have a better chance of beating the Flash in a race than cashing in on Brock Lesnar. This is a historic money in the bank because it marks the first women’s money in the bank ladder match, and the first time AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura are in the same match since their classic match at Wrestle Kingdom 10. Who is going to get a guaranteed title match? We’ll find out on Sunday, and here are my predictions for WWE Money in the Bank 2017.

PRESHOW: The Hype Bros vs The Colóns

How does WWE treat this year’s Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal winner? They book him in only one televised match and put him in a match on the preshow. But look on the bright side, Zack Ryder’s back. Hooray! I expected Mojo Rawley to be in the ladder match or at least win some matches since he has that trophy. Nope, he’s just faded into obscurity. Before Zack Ryder got hurt, the Hype Bros were promised a tag team championship match, and I hope that they do get a tag team title match. Also, why are they fighting the Colóns? This is the throwaway match that nobody is interested in. I don’t expect this match to go over six minutes.

Prediction: Hype Bros

TAG TEAM MATCH FOR WWE SMACKDOWN LIVE TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS: The Usos vs The New Day

Oh Smackdown! Don’t you dare be sour! Clap for the longest reigning tag champs and feel the power! The New Day have finally made their debut on Smackdown and are immediately getting a shot at the tag titles. I laughed so hard when the Usos said that Smackdown is the “Uso Penitentiary” then Big E chimes in saying “When it comes to the Smackdown Tag Team Titles, we likes em. And we want em.” and then Xavier immediately said “Now we can do it the easy way, or we can do it the hard way”. The Usos have done a good job as tag team champions, but the tag division has gone a bit stale. What happened to American Alpha? They haven’t been seen since the Andre the Giant Battle Royal. The New Day bring some spice to Smackdown Live and nothing could be a better welcome for hem than winning the tag titles.

Prediction: New Day

SMACKDOWN LIVE WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Naomi vs Lana

This match is going to be interesting because this will be the first time Lana wrestles. We don’t know what to expect from Lana, and that brings the interest for this match way up. She could do without the Russian accent since she’s separated from Rusev. Smackdown’s women’s title needs to be relevant again. History has said that superstars usually win in their debut match, Santino beat Umaga for the IC title, and more recently Paige beat AJ for the diva’s title. I see that trend continuing and the fans get to see a shock win from Lana.

Prediction: Lana

WOMEN’S MONEY IN THE BANK LADDER MATCH: Charlotte Flair vs Becky Lynch vs Natalya vs Tamina vs Carmella

I think that it’s awesome that the women are getting a money in the bank match. The problem is, that there are only seven women on Smackdown’s active Roster, which means everyone will get a chance to win the briefcase. I see only two people really walking away with the briefcase: Becky Lynch and Charlotte. No offense to Natalya, but she isn’t getting a title push anytime soon, and neither is Tamina. While Carmella could be an upset, I don’t want her to win as long as she has the living embodiment of everything I hate about wrestling by her side, James Ellsworth. Speaking of Ellsworth, I hope someone puts pushes him off of a ladder and he goes through another one. This is going to be a good match and I see Charlotte taking the briefcase, and will soon make Smackdown Live her new kingdom.

Prediction: Charlotte

MEN’S WWE MONEY IN THE BANK LADDER MATCH: Shinsuke Nakamura vs Kevin Owens vs AJ Styles vs Baron Corbin vs Sami Zayn vs Dolph Ziggler

This is the match I’m most excited for. What’s rare about money in the bank ladder matches, is that any of the participants the fans could see winning. This is going to be a crazy match and could be a match of the year candidate. What most wrestling fans are getting hyped for however, is seeing AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura finally face off for the first time since they were in New Japan Pro Wrestling. These six men are the best workers on Smackdown and each of them deserve to be WWE Champion. This match is going to be chock full of great moments. It’d be super dangerous, but seeing a styles clash on a ladder would be amazing. This match is crucial because this will determine who could possibly be WWE Champion going in to WrestleMania 34. There have been some bad briefcase holders, Mr. Kennedy (who lost his case to Edge in a match), Sheamus (fans don’t like Sheamus). Let’s hope that this year’s Mr. Money in the Bank does good things with the case and a good reign as WWE Champion.

Prediction: This is the most difficult prediction I’ve had to make. Corbin, Owens, Nakamua and AJ are my four favorite wrestlers on Smackdown and I’d love to see either of them win. I think each of them could be in a WWE championship match within six months. My final prediction to take home the briefcase is Baron Corbin. Corbin is set to be the top heel on Smackdown Live and has the most to gain from winning. A cash in from Corbin will establish the lone wolf as a main event player. WWE needs to pull the trigger with Corbin and let him run rampant with the briefcase, and eventually become WWE Champion.

WWE CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Jinder Mahal vs Randy Orton

Wrestling fans, put down the alcohol and quit pinching your arms. We need to accept the fact that Jinder Mahal is the WWE Champion and could be champion for a while. I expect this to be better than their Backlash match, but there will most likely be shenanigans aplenty. Jinder needs to be booked as a strong champion, and there isn’t a better way to do that than have Randy Orton put Jinder Mahal over clean. Randy doesn’t need another WWE championship match, and it’s too soon for Jinder to lose it.

Prediction: Jinder Mahal

WWE EXTREME RULES 2017 REVIEW

By: Danny Kown

Prediction Score: 3-2

Extreme Rules has finished and we know who will be the first challenger for Brock Lesnar. The Miz is once again Intercontinental champion, and Hardy’s lost their tag titles. WWE Extreme Rules was a solid pay per view in terms of storytelling and the matches weren’t awful!The hype and build of this show left fans disappointed with the execution.  Well, I’m going to try and tell you that it wasn’t all bad, here’s a match by match review of WWE Extreme Rules 2017.

PRE SHOW MATCH: Kalisto def. Apollo Crews

I thought Goldust vs R-Truth was going the pre show. This match was announced day of and was better than I thought it would be. Apollo and Kalisto are two of the most athletic men on the roster. It was a match you’d see on an episode of Raw and it wasn’t anything more than that. The highlight of the match has to be Crews’ standing shooting star press. At the end of the match, Apollo got frustrated and got “coaching” from Titus O’Neil. That distraction ended up costing his client the match. Things aren’t looking good for the Titus Brand. Titus isn’t done with Kalisto just yet, and we can expect this match to be on the pre show for Great Balls of Fire.

WWE INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH (if Dean gets disqualified he loses the championship): The Miz (with Maryse) def.  Dean Ambrose

Dean Ambrose has been Intercontinental Champion for 152 days. This match is only the second and last time he defended the belt. Miz played mind games throughout taunting Dean to go over the edge and get DQ’d. Miz tried to get Dean to clobber him with a chair or ram him into the exposed turnbuckle. The ref’s 5 count was a recurring factor in the match with both men using it to the fullest extent. It was a good back and forth match. Dean isn’t that bad, and The Miz is one of the most underrated workers in the company.  Of course there were Maryse shenanigans, with her slapping Miz in an effort to get the DQ win but the ref saw it. The finish was a bit weird when Miz shoved Dean into the ref, and in the midst of Dean explaining himself, Miz capitalized and is now a seven time Intercontinental champion. Now it’s time for the Intercontinental title to be brought from the lunatic fringe of existence and back to reality..

MIXED TAG TEAM MATCH: Rich Swann and Sasha Banks def. Noam Dar and Alicia Fox

Let’s be honest, did anyone expect anything from this match? As I’ve said, Sasha deserves better. I expected this to be the pee break match, just before the fatal 5 way. The two reasons this crowd was interested in this match are 1) The show is in Baltimore, and Swann is from Baltimore. And 2) The WWE Universe really likes Sasha Banks. The match itself wasn’t bad, but lacked an excitement factor. The hometown boy won, and that’s all I can really say for this match.

KENDO STICK ON A POLE MATCH FOR THE WWE RAW WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP: Alexa Bliss def. Bayley

What the heck is up with Bayley?  She said that she’ll be willing to go to the extreme, but when the match came along, Bayley didn’t get one swing in with the kendo stick. She got completely buried and is going to slide down the card.  Alexa dominated the entire match, and it was over in five minutes. I’m not sure how Bayley is going to bounce back from this. Who knows…maybe Nia Jax will be the next person to challenge Alexa?

TAG TEAM STEEL CAGE MATCH FOR WWE RAW TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS: The Hardy Boyz vs Sheamus and Cesaro

I liked that WWE brought back the old school cage match, only winning when both people escaped the cage. Throughout the match both teams tried to climb out of the cage. A poetry in motion within the cage. It truly was awesome. The Crowd chanted “Delete!” and “Brother Nero!” throughout which I hope pushes for the Hardy’s to get to use their broken gimmick. Everyone wants it. It was a good cage match, really playing up how hard it is to escape. The highlight of the match is when Jeff came back into the cage and did a whisper in the wind from the top of the cage. That was the night’s typical extreme spot.  Oh how we missed you Jeff Hardy. Then the teams tried to race out of the cage. Matt tried to drag Jeff out of the door while Cesaro and Sheamus climbed over the top. Anyone could have won but in the end  Cesaro and Sheamus’ feet touched the ground first and are now two time tag team champions. I thought the Hardys were going to retain and start a feud with the revival. Maybe we will get that match when Summerslam comes around.

SUBMISSION MATCH FOR WWE CRUISERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP: Neville vs Austin Aries

Neville has been champion for 126 days. The last time a championship changed hands in a submission match was when Bob Backlund beat Bret Hart in 1994, and tonight that didn’t change. This match proved that the cruiserweights aren’t forgotten and deserve the fans respect and admiration. I loved the finish of the match when Neville hit Aries with a Red Arrow then right into the Rings of Saturn for the win. This match was great, and now a question surfaced: Who can dethrone Neville? From the looks of it, Neville could hold this title for the rest of 2017. All hail the King of the Cruiserweights.

EXTREME RULES FATAL FIVE WAY WHERE THE WINNER WILL CHALLENGE BROCK LESNAR FOR THE WWE UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP AT GREAT BALLS OF FIRE: Seth Rollins vs Finn Balor vs Samoa Joe vs Bray Wyatt vs Roman Reigns.

Five of Raw’s top superstars vie for a vacation in sunny Suplex City, USA. Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns know what it’s like to be in Suplex City, it’s not a relaxing place and the owner isn’t too polite. This match was very back and forth and told the story that it could be anyone’s match.  It may have started out slow, but it certainly picked up near the end. The problem is that although it was advertised as an “extreme rules” match, it wasn’t very extreme. Weapons weren’t really used all that much. Which at an “extreme” PPV forces me to use those quotation marks. Great match. Just missed out on the whole extreme part of the show. However, the finish of the match is one of the best I’ve seen in a long time. Roman hit Bray with a spear, then Balor dropkicked Reigns into the corner and hit the Coup de Gras. Then just as Balor was going to win, Samoa Joe came from out of nowhere and locked Finn in the Coquina Clutch. The Samoan Submission Machine will travel to Suplex City to take on the Polar Brock. This is a dream match the fans have been wanting since Samoa Joe came to NXT. I can’t wait to see this match.

Overall Review

If this were any other pay-per-view the fans wouldn’t be disappointed. The problem is that this pay-per-view is called “Extreme Rules”. Everyone was expecting a car crash filled with weapon spots. We instead got a very tame pay per view that didn’t live up to its namesake. Another problem is that there were only six matches. One of the most hyped up matches was only five minutes long. The fatal 5 way match gets my pick for match of the night. The match left us in genuine surprise and the last 10 minutes were a thing of beauty.  I enjoyed Extreme Rules and I would rate this pay-per-view a 7.5 out of 10. As stated earlier, there wasn’t really a bad match. Even the pre-show match was decent. I expected more from the Bliss-Bayley match, but it told the story that Bayley is too nice to go to the extreme.  Now we know who will face the beast, but will Joe conquer the conqueror?

WWE EXTREME RULES 2017 PREDICTIONS

By: Danny Kown

Ah Extreme Rules, or as it’s also known, “Stipulation City”. Seriously, every match on the Extreme Rules card has a stipulation tagged to it. A cage match, a kendo stick on a pole match, the list goes on. This is the one time a year WWE guarantees that pretty much all of the matches aren’t just a normal wrestling match. Extreme Rules is an important pay per view for WWE because the outcome of this pay-per-view dictates the main event scene for the next couple of months. Who will be the one the challenge Brock? Before the dust settles, here are my predictions for WWE Extreme Rules 2017.

R-Truth vs Goldust.

Did anyone not related to Goldust or R-Truth care about this feud? I didn’t even care when they were a tag team. They weren’t that good, and were basically an enhancement talent for the tag division. I don’t blame Goldust for turning heel, I wouldn’t want to team with R-Truth either. Anyway, this match is most likely going to be on the preshow, and I see R-Truth coming out on top and getting revenge on his old tag team partner.

Prediction: R-Truth

 

 

KENDO STICK ON A POLE MATCH FOR THE WWE RAW WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP: Alexa Bliss vs Bayley

Did WWE re-hire Vince Russo? This seems like something he would pull. Does anyone remember such gems as the “Judy Bagwell on a Forklift Match” or the “San Francisco 49ers Match”? But overall, I like how the match has been built aside from the “this is your life segment”. Bayley’s ex made a move on her dad. Compelling television right there. Anyway, Bayley has been booked as an innocent goody-two shoes but will she go to the extreme to regain her championship? Bayley is one of the best women on the roster and Alexa has proven that she can put on a great match. I love Bayley and she can be a great champion however Alexa Bliss has been a DOMINANT champion and I don’t see her losing her championship any time soon. Who will her next challenger be? My money is on Sasha Banks. She is one of the most talented members of the roster and needs to be plucked from obscurity.

Prediction: Alexa Bliss.

SUBMISSION MATCH FOR THE WWE CRUISERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP: Neville vs Austin Aries

Neville is a fantastic champion and his feud with Aries has been an awesome spectacle to watch. Although Neville is the “King of the Cruiserweights”, Aries has been the one destined to dethrone Neville, and I expect it to happen at Extreme Rules. I think that this is going to be a great cruiserweight match, and could potentially be match of the night. I don’t expect Neville to tap out to the last chancery, but he’ll probably pass out. He can still look strong because he never submitted and that could continue their feud going on for the next few months. I mean, let’s be real it won’t be done with until Summerslam. Prediction: Aries.

 

WWE INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH (if Dean gets disqualified he loses the championship): Dean Ambrose vs The Miz

The fans want Dean Ambrose to be successful in WWE. They went nuts when he won the WWE title, but unfortunately he wasn’t that good of a champion. Same with the intercontinental championship. Since Dean won it, he’s done nothing with it. Once the most prestigious championship in the company and the top title on Raw since Lesnar’s Universal champion, was on the preshow of WrestleMania. As a matter of fact, that preshow match was Dean Ambrose’s only intercontinental title defense. He’s been champion for 5 months as of Sunday. All the more reason for The Miz to be intercontinental champion. When Miz held the belt, he made it one of the most sought after belts on Smackdown. I could see some shenanigans from Maryse, or Miz provoking Dean, and Ambrose punt kicks Miz below the belt and gets himself DQ’d. Bottom line, Miz needs to win this match so the Intercontinental title can be brought back to prestige.

Prediction: The Miz

MIXED TAG TEAM MATCH: Rich Swann & Sasha Banks vs Noam Dar & Alicia Fox

Sasha took a mighty fall down the card, from number one contender for the women’s title, to being put in a mixed tag team match just to promote the cruiserweights. I’m happy that the cruiserweights are having other feuds, but this one has just been thrown together. Alicia Fox attacked Sasha after Sasha beat her, then Rich Swann is thrown in so Dar can have someone to fight. Compelling television right there folks. This is probably going to be the pee break match. This is going to be a decent match, Swann and Dar are okay, and Sasha is one of the best workers on Raw. The faces are gonna win and we can take that to the bank.

Prediction: Swann & Banks.

 

 

TAG TEAM STEEL CAGE MATCH FOR WWE RAW TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS: The Hardy Boyz vs Sheamus and Cesaro

I love that the Hardys are back in WWE, broken or extreme. When they came back at WrestleMania may very well be the “feel good moment of the year”. Sheamus and Cesaro have proven to be a great tag team. They’ve had a rocky start, but like Team Hell No before them they have gotten over with the fans and have great chemistry in the ring. When I first heard Matt say it would be a steel cage match, I was excited. I like steel cage matches and wish that WWE would use this match outside of extreme rules. It’s a tried and true match and has produced some legendary moments, like Jimmy Snuka’s dive from the top. I don’t see Sheamus & Cesaro as the team to dethrone the Hardys, that honor belongs to the Revival. When the Revival do come back, they need feud with the Hardys. That is the money tag team match that needs to happen on Monday Night Raw. The Revival and The Hardy’s are two of the best tag teams in the world and I could see this being The Hardy’s next feud.

Prediction: The Hardy Boyz.

EXTREME RULES FATAL FIVE WAY MATCH WHERE THE WINNER WILL CHALLENGE BROCK LESNAR FOR THE WWE UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP: Finn Balor vs Seth Rollins vs Samoa Joe vs Bray Wyatt vs Roman Reigns

What I like about this match is that legitimately (almost) anyone could win and it could make sense. But they won’t beat Lesnar for the title. We all know that the plan is for Lesnar to hold it for a year then lose it to Roman at WrestleMania 34. So the winner gets an all-expenses paid trip to Suplex City, USA courtesy of a T-Rex in shorts. This is going to be a chaotic match, as is most multi-man matches. With that being said, let’s go through each participant and how they could put on a great program with Lesnar.

Finn Balor.

Finn Balor is the most unique person in this match. He also makes plenty of sense to win this match. Finn Balor won the first Universal title, but had to relinquish the belt after suffering a shoulder injury thanks to a buckle bomb from Seth Rollins on the barricade. Balor’s kicks could combat the beast’s power, and an awesome spot in this match could be Balor flipping out of a german, then doing his dropkick in the corner and hitting Lesnar with a coup de gras. This match writes itself.

Seth Rollins.

Seth Rollins and Brock Lesnar have unfinished business. The last time they faced off was at Battleground 2015. Lesnar won the match by DQ thanks to interference from The Undertaker. If Seth wins, he could brag that he stole Brock’s belt in the main event of WrestleMania, and that he’s been to Suplex City before and isn’t afraid to go back. WWE could play up on their history and finish their feud from 2015.

Roman Reigns.

Let’s be real here, Roman isn’t winning here. They won’t give away Reigns-Lesnar II on anything less than WrestleMania.

Bray Wyatt.

Bray and Lesnar were supposed to face each other at Roadblock last year but instead Lesnar demolished Luke Harper. Bray Wyatt and Paul Heyman sharing mic time together is something wrestling fans have been wanting for a long time. Bray Wyatt is also very stiff in the ring and can put on great matches. Bray has a lot of power moves and could push Brock to his limits.

Samoa Joe.

Joe vs Lesnar is a dream match fans have been wanting since Brock came back in 2012. Brock and Joe both have an MMA based offense and are very powerful strikers. Joe is also one of the most athletic superstars on the roster, and one of the biggest reasons Joe came to WWE is to have a match against Lesnar. How awesome would it be to counter Joe’s coquina clutch into a german Suplex? Some of this stuff literally writes itself.

Prediction: As much as I would love to see Samoa Joe winning, I am picking Finn Balor to win this match. Finn Balor makes the most sense to win this match in my opinion. Before Balor got hurt, he was pushed to the moon. I expect WWE to put Balor right back in the Universal title picture. Balor winning makes storyline sense because he’ll finally be getting a chance to regain the Universal Championship. Facing Brock could be a great way for Balor to get back into the Universal title picture, even with a loss.

Why the Washington Redskins Need To Keep Kirk Cousins

The Washington Redskins have garnered a reputation to be a revolving door for quarterbacks. There is some truth to that. Since the team’s last super bowl win in 1991, the team has gone through 24 different starting quarterbacks. That number is second only to the Browns with 33 in that span. Some quarterbacks for Washington include Heath Shuler, Gus Frerotte, Jason Campbell, Rex Grossman, Donovan McNabb, RGIII, and Kirk Cousins. Overall the Washington Redskins have had three quarterbacks throw for 4000 yards in a season. Jay Schroeder, Brad Johnson, and Kirk Cousins. Kirk is the only one to throw for 4000 yards in multiple seasons. And the Redskins still haven’t signed him long term. If the Redskins let Kirk go that would be as big a blunder as signing Albert Haynesworth to a 7 year $100 million contract.

For those who know me, I did not always think so highly of Kirk Cousins. When Kirk first arrived in DC, I was very high on RGIII. I loved RGIII and still have two of his jerseys. When Griffin got hurt and Kirk played against the Browns, I thought he was alright. Then when he filled in for Rob after he got hurt, Kirk did not play all too well. Then when he was named the starter in 2015, I was very pessimistic. Then the Tampa Bay game happened. The Skins were 2-4 and things weren’t looking well as Mike Evans has a history of torching the Redskins defense. The game got bad real fast, facing a 24-7 deficit at halftime. I can bet fans were walking out of that stadium at halftime, getting tired of seeing Kirk Cousins play badly. Those fans were kicking themselves at the end of the day. They missed out on Kirk Cousins lead a 24 point comeback and stunned the Bucs 31-30. Then right as Kirk was going into the locker room screaming “YOU LIKE THAT?!” That game made me a believer in Kirk, as well as the Redskins fan base. “You like that” became Washington’s battle cry that season, as Kirk led the Redskins on a 6-3 run as they won their second division championship in four years, but unfortunately lost to Green Bay in the wild card round of the playoffs. He broke the Redskins single season passing yards record with 4166 yards with 29 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.

In 2016, rather than give Kirk Cousins a long term contract, or even pick up his fifth year option (which was stupid) they instead gave him the franchise tag, which was worth $19 million. I can understand to give him the franchise tag the first time, to see if his 2015 campaign wasn’t a fluke. Well guess what? It wasn’t. Kirk broke his own record and threw for 4917 yards, and only Drew Brees and MVP Matt Ryan threw for more yards. And yet the Redskins offense often sputtered in the redzone. This is an offense that was third in the league, but couldn’t score. It is unbelievably frustrating when a team is knocking on the door, then gets stuffed and has to kick a field goal. Something the Redskins need to improve on this season is finishing drives and scoring touchdowns. In 2016 the Skins finished with an 8-7-1 record. Yes they tied, but for the first time since 1996-1997 Washington has posted back to back winning seasons. Kirk has led the team to those winning seasons, because none of the other QBs on the roster could’ve pulled that off. RGIII and Colt McCoy have a history with injuries. Plain and simple, Kirk Cousins is the best quarterback the Redskins have had in twenty years. Kirk is the only quarterback in team history to have back to back 4000 yard passing seasons. Kirk showed consistency in proving that 2015 wasn’t a fluke, and even had almost three 1000 yard receivers. How did the team repay him? By franchise tagging him again, which is better than nothing considering management didn’t offer Desean Jackson or Garcon anything. Kirk is making $25 million this year, and while researching for this I saw that president Bruce Allen is willing to tag Kirk for a third time. For those who aren’t aware in 2018 Kirk would make $34.5 million for just that one season. $34.5 MILLION in one season. After that, kirk can just say “so long suckers” and go play in San Fran on a long term contract. I’ve been a Redskins fan for a long time and I know for a fact that the Redskins have made stupid decisions like letting Desean Jackson and Pierre Garcon walk, but they can’t and I emphasize can’t let Kirk walk. He wants to be in Washington, but he also wants to be where he’s wanted. All the front office has done is tell Kirk that they don’t have enough faith in him to be the franchise quarterback. Kirk has done nothing but prove that he belongs and is capable of making the Redskins a playoff team, which is saying a lot. The front office needs to do everything in their power to sign Cousins long term. The team cannot afford to start over now, because they have the best quarterback they’ve had in decades. The Redskins have until July 15 to decide on whether or not to sign him long term. Washington front office, on behalf of the Redskins fan base please sign Kirk long term. Sign him for $60 million or something like that. I don’t care how much money you pay him, as long as he stays.