Monday, February 29, 2016

ROH TV Review - February 28th, 2016

TONIGHT: Adam Cole vs. Matt Sydal

1) Silas Young & Beer City Bruiser vs. The Boys
Dalton Castle attacks Silas and the Brusier from behind before the Boys even make their way to the ring. Officials pull him away and take him to the back as the Boys come out for the match. They are met by Silas Young cutting a promo on them in which he says that he's so confident about this match that if the Boys beat him, he'll quit wrestling and leave ROH. I wasn't really interested in this on paper, but that adds a bit of intrigue. The Boys look really good here as they get the chance to show off and put in some awesome offense including a huge dive to the outside and catching Beer City Brusier in a cutter off a frog splash attempt. In the end, Silas & The Bruiser hit an array of strikes and flying manuevers on the Boys while they're stacked in the corner which leads them to victory.

Match rating - **1/4

2) Brian Fury vs. Action Ortiz - Semi Final Match in the Top Prospect Tournament
BRIAN FURY! That guy has deserved this opportunity for so long. He's been a pro since 1999 and Ortiz has only been in the biz a year or two so Fury has the advantage in a lot of areas. I also found i interesting when Kevin Kelly mentioned how Fury trained last year's Top Prospect tournament winner, Donovan Dijak. Could we see the mentor win this year? And just as I type this, before I can even follow up that last statement, Action Ortiz hits a fucking flip over the top rope to the outside, WHAT?! Never saw that coming from him. This match doesn't really go that long, Fury gets a fist to the face and when he falls, his leg supposedly catches Ortiz in the crotch. I'm not sure why that came across so weird or whether or not it was meant to happen, but Ortiz sells it and Fury follows it up with a pop up sit out powerbomb to advance to the finals of the tournament.

Match rating - *1/2

3) Lio Rush vs. Punisher Martinez

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Lucha Underground Review - February 17th, 2016

FINALLY, after weeks of not being home to catch the new season of Lucha Underground, I got my first taste of what my favorite TV promotion had in store for 2016. For those curious, I DO have the first few episodes that I missed and I do plan on reviewing them, but I feel it would be dumb to hold up on posting this when I watched/reviewed it as it happened. Therefore, here we are.

The main event tonight is a dream match: Prince Puma vs. Pentagon Jr. Damn, I really did miss LU, this is gonna rule. However, that's later. Trios action is up first!

1) Angelico, Ivelisse, & Son of Havoc vs. Chavo Guerrero & The Crew
High impact, fast paced match to kick off the festivities here. Every person gets their chance to shine with the exception of Angelico whom they built the hot tag towards. Once he got in, it was more than worth the wait as he went absolutely nuts with his unbelievably fluent offense. He was legitimately flying all around the ring. In the end, he would lead his team to victory which didn't set well at all with Chavo Guerrero who had a bone to pick with Cisco post match for taking the pin. Amidst this controversy, Texano Jr runs out and plows over both members of the Crew in route to Chavo Guerrero although Chavo would get away before he could get his hands on him. Sneaky bastard.

Match rating - **3/4

Backstage, Cisco is seen in deep thought in the locker room when none other than Joey Ryan approaches. God help us. I think is Joey's first match in LU so he basically tells Cisco to watch how he gets the job done.

2) Cage vs. Joey Ryan

WWE Monday Night Raw Review - February 15th, 2016

Dean Ambrose opens the show after the broadcast began with a replay of his altercations with Brock Lesnar last week. Ambrose calls out Brock once again only to get Stephanie McMahon who is returning the favor of interuppting him like he did to her last week. Steph promises Ambrose an F5, but not the F5 he's thinking about. Tonight, F5 stands for Fatal Fiveway and Ambrose defends his IC Title against four opponents in that exact match right now!

1) Dean Ambrose (c) vs. Kevin Owens vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Tyler Breeze vs. Stardust - Intercontinental Championship Match
These sort of matches always deliver and this was no different. You have three major workhorses and two underutilized talents so it made for a nice mix. Ambrose, Owens, & Ziggler were the highlights although Breeze & Stardust more than got their chance to shine. They pulled off a number of awesome spots & exchanges here including Owens powerbombing Breeze to the floor on the three other men, Ziggler hitting a Zig Zag on Ambrose who had Stardust in position for Dirty Deeds, and who could forget the triple take on Owens' running flip into the corner that would be stopped out of nowhere on the fourth try with a superkick from Tyler Breeze? Highly entertaining match here that ends with Owens nailing Breeze with a pop up powerbomb to win his second Intercontinental Championship!

Match rating - ***1/2

2) Big E vs. Mark Henry
New Day cuts a promo before hand which brings out Mark Henry. I had no interest in this, really, but it truly wasn't that bad. Mark Henry hit this hilariously great pounce/headbutt thing on that mat that I loved. Big E was Big E and he's great. The finish left a worrysome look on everyone's face though as Henry awkwardly fell off Big E's shoulders amidst a big ending attempt. This led to a rushed finish and three count. Hope Henry is alright!

Match rating - **

Brie Bella / Charlotte confrontation
An interview with Brie about Daniel Bryan's retirment turned into a scuffle with Charlotte here when she & her father Ric Flair made their way to the ring. I usually find these Divas segments quite corny, but this one was actually good. Brie & Charlotte were both A+ in their roles. Brie ends up charging Charlotte after a bunch of smart comments directed towards her sister and her husband. This made me actually start looking forward to their match at Fast Lane. The crowd roars with Yes chants as Brie forces Charlotte to retreat.

3) AJ Styles vs. The Miz
I missed the first match these two had a few weeks back on Smackdown. Apparently it was really good though so I'm glad it's happening again so I can seeeees it for myself. It's solid for the first half with Miz controlling a good bit and Styles coming back with a few hope spots like the diving superman punch off the steps. They really turn it up for the final stretch with some unique counters you wouldn't expect in a Miz match. Miz ducks the backfist near the end of AJ's signature striking flurry, AJ responds by rolling up Miz for a near fall. Styles finally hits the flying fore arm after springboarding off the top rope for a two count. Miz hits the skull crushing finale for a near fall of his own on Styles. Just fun false finish stuff that the crowd was into. In the end, Miz rushes Styles in the corner and gets caught in the calf killer and is forced to tap.

Match rating - ***

The Dudleys address the WWE Universe
This was essentially just a shortened version of their promo on Smackdown. They mock what they did to The Usos, say they aren't just a nostalgia act, the tables are gone, and they're the baddest tag team in wrestling. Exit Dudleys.

4) Paige vs. Summer Rae
Random as fuck match here, but it's surprisingly quite enjoyable despite the crowd not being really into it. Paige is crisper than I've seen her in awhile in her return match after a few weeks away from Raw. Summer looks better than normal as well with her offense. They do some stuff on the mat, trade kicks and counters which leads to the sweet finish with Summer rolling Paige into a pinning combination out of a PTO attempt.

Match rating - **1/4

Paul Heyman / Roman Reigns confrontation
Heyman does his thing here. Fast Lane is a week away and Paul E is doing what he does best, selling the main event. He calls Roman out for a talk. Nothing overly notable takes place until the end when Dean Ambrose hits the ring to make the sae after The Dudley's attacked Roman Reigns while Heyman exited. E C DUB! E C-- I'm sorry. Anyway, Ambrose saves Roman then grabs him and sets him up FOR THE DIRTY DEEDS DDT BUT ROMAN ESCAPES! DUDE! That was awesome. Ambrose & Roman stare at each other, Roman kind of smirks which toned down the initial intensity of that, but I'll take it because I popped hard for that moment.

5) Zack Ryder vs. Heath Slater
What the fuck is this randomness doing here? I love the Social Outcasts and Ryder is fun though so I'll let it slide. Bo Dallas is at ringside too so ayyye! Ryder hits a huge plancha to take out all of the outcasts at one point. He also lands the broski boot, but it's all for nothing as Slater is victorious when all is said and done.

Match rating - **

6) Neville & Lucha Dragons vs. Alberto Del Rio, Rusev, & Sheamus
The Neville/Dragons trio is made for sprints and that's just what this was. Oddly enough they mesh very well with the League of Nations fellas so this was a hoot. Sick triple dive spot to begin and an insane variation of Del Rio's double stomp as he nailed it on Cara with him hanging from the second rope to finish.

Match rating - **3/4

7) Becky Lynch vs. Naomi
I'd normally be into this, but the show was quite draggy at this point plus it was really short, so, yeah. Becky wins, Tamina attacks, Sasha makes the save, the remaining members of Team BAD retreat.

Match rating - *1/2

8) Big Show vs. Braun Strowman
I'm utterly confused. This was a decent enough match/segment, but having it end Raw was just meh. Show & Strowman go at it for a few minutes before the inevitable happens. Rowan and the Wyatt Family attack thus causing a DQ finish. Cole & the boys on commentary replayed The Wyatt's taking out Kane & Ryback in the past few weeks throughout the night so you knew what that was leading towards. As the Family beats down Show, Ryback hits the ring for his return followed by Kane. Show, Kane, & Ryback stand tall to end Raw.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

ROH TV Review - February 14th, 2016

After a month of missing ROH TV, due to being so busy, I'm finally back and ready to hop into regular viewing. Thankfully, I haven't missed too much. The Top Prospect Tournament is underway and the build for the 14th Anniversary PPV which is a few weeks away has begun. We begin this week's show with the former as Lio Rush faces Jason Kincaid in a first round match in the 2016 Top Prospect Tournament.

1) Lio Rush vs. Jason Kincaid - Top Prospect Tournament Match
Lio Rush created quite the buzz in the latter part of 2015 so it's only fitting that he starts off 2016 with the biggest opportunity of his young career. Considering I hadn't seen him before, I was stoked to finally get that chance and I must say, the hype surrounding him certainly was justified as his one of a kind athleticism stood out from the sound of the bell. While Rush lived up to the hype, Jason Kincaid is who really left an impression on me here which I think is due to me having never heard of him before. Kincaid lit the crowd ablaze in his own right with moves like a dive through the ropes into a flipping ace crusher to the outside. Both guys busted out some insanely unique stuff that has to be seen to be believed. This was pretty much an exhibition, but that's what this kind of stuff is made for. Rush gets the win to advance after several minutes of super fun action.

Match rating - ***

TONIGHT: The Young Bucks vs. ACH & Matt Sydal

2) Silas Young & Beer City Bruiser vs. Will Ferrara & Caprice Coleman
I didn't have much interest in this despite being a Silas mark so it was whatever. It didn't go too long and did it's job so I can't complain. The Boys ended up coming down to cause a distraction, the Brusier goes after them, Ferrara capitalizes on this and hits a dive which he turns into a DDT on the floor. This leads to he & Coleman picking up the victory.

Match rating - **

BJ Whitmer / Steve Corino confrontation
A few weeks ago, Whitmer attacked Colby Corino, the son of Steve. This led to someone apparently telling Steve he wanted to fight BJ for him since he's suspended and injured on top of that. Corino comes out and tells BJ that he always needs to have eyes in the back of his head. IT'S ADAM PAGE! The time has come! Page and Whitmer get into a brawl that results in them having to be pulled apart. After that starmaking performance against Jay Briscoe last year, I've been waiting for Page to break out on his own so this was extremely exciting to see.

3) Mark Briscoe vs. Tim Hughes
Prolonged squash. Hughes bows up to Mark early on by refusing to shake his hand. They do stuff for a few minutes. Hughes gets one or two moments of offense before Briscoe hits a fisherman's buster followed by a frog splash to get the three count.

Match rating - *1/2

4) The Young Bucks vs. ACH & Matt Sydal
This is only the second Young Bucks match I've watched this year so I'm KIIIIINDA pumped. Sike, I'm super pumped and rightfully so because this ruled. Crazy spots, superkicks, flips, all that good stuff executed to perfection because The Bucks are the best at what they do and Matt Sydal is just as crisp, if not even more so. Then you have ACH who can more than hold his own as we would see here. Sydal managed to kick out of MBFYB which led to ACH nailing a diving foot stomp out of nowhere. This set up the finish with Sydal hitting the Shooting Star Press for the surprise win. The Bucks were IWGP Jr Tag Champs at this time so I wasn't expecting that, highly entertaining main event.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

WWE Smackdown Review - February 11th, 2016

The show kicks off with Chris Jericho and apparently his highly anticipated rematch with AJ Styles is starting the night off. Before they can even lock up, though, the Social Outcasts come out and spew a bunch of stuff. Jericho hits Slater with the mic and says that he & AJ will fight later, but right now they're teaming up.

1) Chris Jericho & AJ Styles vs. The Social Outcasts (Heath Slater, Curtis Axel, & Adam Rose)
What a world we live in. Y2J & AJ Styles teaming up to face what is basically the 3 Man Band 2.0 on Smackdown. This was essentially just to further the tension between Jericho & Styles with both men making blind tags on another and playing the game of oneupsmanship with dropkicks & such. In the end, AJ steals the victory from Jericho by tagging in and jumping over him to deliver the springboard superman punch to Adam Rose.

Match rating - **1/4

The Raw replays begin at this point. The entire Lesnar/Ambrose thing from Raw is recapped along with the Dudleys/Uso thing that I totally forgot about. This leads to the next segment of the night in which Bubba Ray & Devon explained their actions. I love Bubba as a heel on the mic so I enjoyed this a lot. They basically say that everyone forgot who they are and ever since they returned, they've been looked upon as a nostalgia act. Bubba says they didn't return to be that, they returned to build their legacy. They make the ringside crew remove all the tables from ringside because the fans always chant for the tables instead of them. Good stuff.

2) Sasha Banks vs. Naomi (w/ Tamina)
Becky Lynch is on commentary. She & Sasha face Naomi & Tamina on the Fast Lane pre-show in a few weeks. Being a fan of both of these women, I dug this a lot. It was easily the best women's match on WWE in 2016 so far. Then again, that isn't really saying much, but it does show who the standout competitors are in the women's division. The crowd actually really got into the false finishes and things they did near the end. Tamina creates a distraction and it allows Naomi to hit a head scissor driver as Mauro called it which Sasha kicked out of despite it feeling like the finish of the match. Tamina throws Becky out of her chair, Sasha makes the save and kicks Tamina out of the chair and onto her head. Sasha gets back in the ring and gets rolled up by Naomi only to counter it into the bank statement which forces Naomi to tap.

Match rating - **3/4

The Wyatt Family cut a promo at this point in the program. Although, I'd be lying if I said I paid attention to it. So, yeah. Next!

3) Neville & Lucha Dragons vs. Stardust & The Ascension
The "comic book character" rivalry has randomly been reignited. Stardust & The Ascension jump the babyfaces before the bell. It isn't long before Neville & The Dragons mount their comeback, however, and this match got really fun. Just a minute or two long stretch of signature, exciting offense from Neville, the US Champ, and the returning Sin Cara before they finally earn the victory.

Match rating - **

A Daniel Bryan video package is aired including moments from his farewell :-(

4) Chris Jericho vs. AJ Styles
It's that time! They've built this up to be a big rematch so I'm even more excited than I'd normally be. Typically this makes it hard for me to get heavily into match because of the expectations which surround it, but I can firmly say I really enjoyed this. Jericho plays the aggressor right off the bat and continues that role throughout the match by targeting the mid section & back of Styles in a variety of ways. This is all to set up for the Walls of Jericho. He finishes off this by hitting a sick tiger driver style backbreaker. When the hold finally got locked in, it made for a great false finish as Y2J wrenched back on it only for Styles to resort to a counter when he couldn't reach the ropes. The calf killer is applied and Jericho damn near taps before finally getting a rope break. The heat got turned up in the final few minutes, as you can probably tell, thanks to moments like this and the crowd got pretty into it. Mauro Ranallo's calling of the action was the icing on the cake and definitely added to things. AJ hits a dive to the floor and dueling chants begin. The springboard punch is attempted, Jericho knocks Styles' legs out from under him which allows Y2J to hit the codebreaker out of nowhere for the three count. Good match here that definitely topped their initial meeting. I'm looking forward to round three which will be the tiebreaker since these guys are now tied at one win a piece.

Match rating - ***3/4

NEXT WEEK: Brock Lesnar appears on Smackdown for the first time in over a decade!

Monday, February 1, 2016

WWE Monday Night Raw Review - February 1st, 2016

I missed the opening segment as I arrived around 15 minutes into the show. Apparently it was a verbal exchange between Dean Ambrose and Brock Lesnar/Paul Heyman which sounds great on paper, but it is what it is. Rusev and Kalisto are in the ring when my viewing begins.

1) Kalisto vs. Rusev (w/ Alberto Del Rio)
Kalisto was the MVP of WWE in January and Rusev continues to be ever so underrated so this was a lot of fun. Kalisto bounced around nicely and Rusev made him look great. There was an awesome spot which saw Kalisto dive to the outside only to get caught with a kick from Rusev in mid-air. They also did some stuff at the end which ruled as Kalisto got propelled onto the announce table and he dove off to catch Rusev with a head scissors into the barricade. This allowed the US Champ to get a count out victory, much to the shagrin of Alberto Del Rio. They face off once again at Fast Lane in a few weeks.

Match rating - **3/4

TONIGHT: Miz TV with AJ Styles

2) The Usos vs. Adam Rose & Curtis Axel
The Social Outcasts dominate early by isolating Jey Uso. This leads to the hot tag to Jimmy and a superkick party which served as the finishing sequence. Pretty entertaining straight forward stuff here, the crowd was hot for the Usos like usual.

Match rating - **1/2

Miz TV with AJ Styles
The Miz runs his mouth continuiously telling the story of AJ Styles instead of letting him talk himself. The crowd starts booing Miz and he goes off about Styles being a "rookie redneck" who needs him as his coach to be successful just like Daniel Bryan did. Miz turns around and Styles jumps him. Awesome beatdown occurs before Miz flees. Styles faces Miz on Smackdown this week.

3) Charlotte (w/ Ric Flair) vs. Brie Bella (w/ Alicia Fox)
I'm getting so bored of Flair being involved in the Divas division. The story here bridged off a backstage interview earlier where Charlotte made some smart comments about Nikki Bella's injury which led us here. Flair tries to help Charlotte win by providing a distraction, but it ends up costing her the match instead. Brie pins the Divas Champion.

Match rating - **

4) Big Show vs. Erick Rowan
After a bunch of big man slugging around, Show pins Rowan which leads to an attack from Harper & Strowman. They do a pretty good job of dismantling Show and slam him back first on the steel steps to end the assault.

Match rating - **

TONIGHT: Dean Ambrose & Roman Reigns vs. The New Day

5) Kevin Owens vs. Dolph Ziggler
These two have had numerous meetings over the past 6-8 months, but they never fail to deliver. Even when they are put in a match together without any real reasoning like they were here tonight. With the styles of both men, their matches could easily get repetitive however they made sure to do something different here. This one was all about showcasing the dominant, bully aspect of Kevin Owens as he dominated the majority of the match and his charisma was allowed to shine through with a number of cocky remarks. They built towards a back & forth finishing sequence that saw Ziggler fight back by hitting a famesser on the floor. Owens responds by regaining control and nailing Ziggler with the running cannon ball into the corner whilst he was hung from the top turnbuckle. This allows Owens to set up Ziggler for the pop up powerbomb but the Show Off reverses and nails KO with the Zig Zag out of nowhere for the victory.

Match rating - ***1/4

6) Sasha Banks vs. Becky Lynch
Sasha cut a great promo prior to the match about branching out on her own which brings out her former Team Bad stable mates in the form of Naomi & Tamina. They claim to still have her back which raised a lot of suspicion. Becky & Sasha have some good exchanges and counter wrestling before a confrontation on the outside leads to Naomi & Tamina jumping Sasha. Becky surprisingly has Sasha's back and the babyfaces make the heels retreat. This was much better than anything going on in the Divas Title picture right now. The crowd chants for Becky as the segment comes to a close.

Match rating - **1/4

7) Dean Ambrose & Roman Reigns vs. The New Day
Paul Heyman is on commentary to build up the suspense of Brock Lesnar re-appearing and talk the triple threat match at Fast Lane. As with most Ambreigns and New Day matches, this was highly entertaining. There was a super chaotic exchange on the floor near the end and the action was pretty fiery & consistent throughout the match. Reigns & Ambrose both got hot tag opportunities at points and New Day worked well in their role as always. Dirty deeds from Ambrose puts an end to the chaos as he pins Big E.

Match rating - ***1/4

It isn't even a few seconds after the match before Brock Lesnar's music hits and he runs down to exact his promise of bringing fuss. New Day jumps Ambrose & Reigns, but they fight them off. Well, Ambrose does at least. This leaves him alone in the ring and Brock seizes the opportunity to drop him with an F5. Reigns & Kofi awkwardly keep brawling on the outside, but are on the ground when the camera changes back. Weird ending from that perspective although Brock got his hands on Ambrose which was the story of the entire evening. Decent ending to an average episode of Raw. Nothing must see, but not bad either.