It’s easy to get bogged down in the negativity that exists online when it comes to the world of professional wrestling (or “Sports Entertainment” if you prefer). Are there things worthy of that negativity in the wrestling world? Absolutely! But too often, there are positive aspects to the current product that get overlooked. That’s what I aim to correct with this series. Let’s put a pause on the bad stuff, all the complaints, criticisms, rants, and rundowns. Instead, let’s come up for a breath of fresh air, sift through the week that was, and accentuate the positives.
Just want to point out here, as I begin my tenure here at TWM, I previously wrote this series for Brian Fritz’s Between The Ropes website. I’m thankful for the opportunity Brian gave me and I’m looking forward to continuing my quest at finding the most positive stories in wrestling from week to week right here at TWM. So, let’s get to it…
Here are your top positives from the week that was:
1. Evolve Featured on WWE Website
While the details of the relationship between Evolve and WWE is mostly a mystery to fans, it’s clear that a relationship does indeed exist. This is my top positive this week because regardless of the extent of said relationship, the fact that someone inside WWE is willing to give an independent promotions some exposure in this form is great for not just Evolve, but all of wrestling. Pro wrestling works best when there is a healthy independent presence throughout both North America and UK.
The only way for WWE to have a talented roster is to have viable promotions in which to allow individuals to cut their teeth. I know NXT and the performance center exist to cut down on WWE’s dependency on outside sources to shape talent, but having a diverse range of indy promotions yields a diverse group of talent. Allowing men and women to get outside experience at varying promotions before coming to WWE’s developmental system avoids having a “cookie cutter” output of wrestlers moving out of developmental.
Evolve is a healthy promotion that features technically sound wrestling. WWE having any sort of association with this style of wrestling is encouraging and points to an increased emphasis on in ring work that has become more than apparent in NXT. Oh, and let’s not forget the exposure this gives Timothy Thatcher, Johnny Gargano, “Hot Sauce” Tracy Williams, Anthony Nese, and Zack Sabre, Jr. Positives all around!
2. Dolph Ziggler Answers John Cena’s Open Challenge
This past Monday on Raw, we were treated to an excellent US Title match between Dolph Ziggler and John Cena. During the previous iteration of this series, I’ve often cited Cena’s US Open Challenge to be the best segments on Raw, and the same is true this week. I am still blown away at the quality of matches John Cena is producing, on free tv no less. There was a hint of heel in Ziggler’s performance and I think a heel turn by Ziggler could definitely freshen him up, something that he could use after his recent creative placement on WWE television.
While the Hell in a Cell card already seems to be rather full, I wouldn’t mind seeing Ziggler and Cena grow a story over the next few weeks and have a rematch at Survivor Series. If you’ll indulge me in a bit of fantasy booking here, I could easily see Ziggler point back to last year’s Survivor Series when he was the sole survivor on Cena’s team. Ziggle could claim that he won for Cena and then Cena turned around and allowed the Authority to fire him. He could go on to say that since then, Cena’s had title matches and headlined shows, while Ziggler has been put on the back burner. If the rumors floating around about Cena taking time off soon are true (and I always take those things with a grain of salt) then having Ziggler be the guy to beat him for the US Title and put him off TV would be a huge push on a newly turned Ziggler.
Even if this doesn’t happen like that, I assume we’ll at least get a rematch from this past Monday and that alone is a positive. The more opportunities Ziggler has to shine in the ring, the better as his most recent outings have been more about soap opera segments than getting it done between the ropes as he’s known to do.
- Harry Smith (Davey Boy Smith Jr) acquired the rights to the British Bulldog moniker and will now wrestle as “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith Jr.
- Paige will appear on Conan Thursday following Game 5 of the National League Championship, if necessary.
- TNA Impact put on a solid TV show Wednesday with a nice main event between the former Beer Money team, Bobby Roode and James Storm
- Lisa Marie Varon (Victoria/Tara) wrestles for the first time in a year tonight (10/17) at Border City Wrestling’s “Excellence” show.
- Shout out to Nia Jax on her NXT debut this week.
Well, that’s it for this week. Until next time, stay positive!