Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Best Coast Bias: Trending In A Positive Direction

He'd say it's not the quantity of defenses but the quality
Photo Credit: WWE.com

And suddenly in a Networking era, it's like the purveyors of the Stamford Kool-Aid realize what they have in Main Event.

Aside from an opening match that allowed Los Matadores to get a bit of their steam back against AxelBack -- two matriarch fornicators who don't know how to act -- this second episode of ME2.0 featured a pair of two-segment defenses of secondary Championships from heels who picked up their hardware last spring but at times have seemed lost and adrift without a great rivalry to be more than a number to be glossed over by future WWE historians and Bias Fan Clubites.  By the end of the show, both AJ Lee and Dean Ambrose had overcome two persistent and tough challengers to put some important Ws in their ledgers and a bit more shine to the titles around their waists.

In the case of the Match of the Night (well, narrowly) it is one thing to survive, another to win, and another to leave your opponent in tears.  Since Mark Henry's heart don't pump no Kool-Aid, it fell from the eyes of the NattieKat after AJ tapped her out to the Black Widow in the middle of the ring.  Natalya may be shedding tears over failing at her opportunity, but quietly into that good night she did not go.  You can argue she maybe should've brought some backup in order to nullify Tamina's presence, but that's another question for another time.

Here, she brought the power and Dungeon training that brought her to the dance, effortlessly plowing through AJ when she came off of the ropes and controlling her with headlock takeovers and legpicked abdominal stretches when it was on the mat.  AJ thus needed Tamina to execute Operation Hey Over Here Trusting Babyface, and then knock her into the ring off the top rope when it worked.  Thus the back end of the match unfolded--AJ trying submission after submission, including a cravate, two guillotines and a Black Widow Out Of Nowhere!™ in the center of the ring.  The crowd behind her emphatically the whole way, especially after the Champ's pre-match promo where she confessed to boredom and stated there wasn't a lick of competition she couldn't best, when Nattie finally got on the Sharpshooter it seemed to be Tamina O'Clock.  But AJ scratched and clawed for the ropes...at which point Nattie pulled her to center ring and then it was time for chicanery.  It wasn't just that AJ was fighting for the bottom rope yet again, it was that Tamina was willing to push it towards her for that little extra assistance.  Per usual, the zebra was as close to legally blind as makes no difference; shortly thereafter, a Shining Wizard and another Black Widow mid-ring put an end to the best AJ title defense in some time.  It appears Nikki's turn is up next, and as for Natalya, well, that television show is popular.

Dean's night wasn't as long as the Jerseyite's but it felt pretty familiar: heel Champion notorious for probable mental problems who rarely defends shows up with backup, then finds themselves pinballing around the ring due to the power of their larger opponent early but thanks to the backup comes back later to win cleanish in the middle of the squared circle.  Say what you will, but the Ambrose reign is still on pace to hit 300 days before the month's over.  Once he lasered in on Mark Henry's left leg, he went at it with a precision that would've made William Regal slow clap and offer himself up for a virtual beheading.

Sometimes it was a legbar, sometimes it was that modified DDT of the leg you've seen a heel or forty use, and most enticingly it was a couple of flying chop blocks off of the middle rope.  Even a half crab was deployed in Dean's efforts to keep the WSM grounded, and for the most part they paid off.  Interestingly in a seperation from the prior match, interference didn't actually happen.  Seth Rollins merely got clotheslined for appropriately pointing out that Dean was wrapped up in the ropes after getting JYD'd, and Roman Reigns got up on the steps perhaps to spear the former World Champion into a fine paste again.  Seeing as the threat was posed by the Shield, that was distraction enough for Henry to not go Vader Bombing and get yanked off the second rope instead.  With what to the WWE record books is probably the first basement bulldog driver, Ambrose secured the title defense in his vest pocket.

Once is a fluke, twice is a trend.  Most of us know that math from our youth.  Come next week, this iteration of Main Event is looking to make it thrice and a trending habit.  Considering how close we are to the Rilly Big Shew from the Superdome, betting against it seems to be the wrong thing to do.