Friday, April 25, 2014

The Polling Place: NXT Women's Title, ROH/NJPW War of the Worlds, Torito/Hornswoggle

Will one of these two become the next NXT Womens' Champion?
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Welcome to the Polling Place, where I will ask a series of questions to get the temperature of you, the readers of TWB and fans of wrestling. This week, I kick it off with a happening from last night's NXT. JBL opened last night's episode by stripping Paige of her Women's Championship due to the rigors of defending the Divas Championship on the main roster. Spoilers for future tapings suggest that a tournament will take place. Four names have emerged from the ether as likely favorites, including the BFFs Charlotte and Sasha Banks, Bayley, and the Richie Cunningham's older brother of Total Divas, Jojo Offerman. Of course, a chance exists that someone from the field could snag the title. Who do you think has the best chance of taking the strap?

Secondly, Ring of Honor and New Japan Pro Wrestling announced matches for their two jointly-promoted shows in May. Several matches piqued interest for various positive reasons, but one particular match set for War of the Worlds on the 17th in New York has generated a lot of controversy. Hiroshi Tanahashi, NJPW's ace-turning-elder-statesman, will not be taking on Adam Cole, Kevin Steen, Jay Briscoe, or Michael Elgin, but Michael Bennett. The disparity in card position and the clash in styles have polarized fans online, although most of the reaction has been critical of the match so far. I personally don't think it's that bad an announcement, but I want to know what you think.

Finally, the most talked-about feud in WWE in the last two weeks has featured Hornswoggle turning heel, joining 3MB, and feuding with El Torito. The matches have been super fun so far, but allowing WWE to promote anything based on a minority group's physical features can be problematic as referenced by the commentary for the various matches. Is this feud good harmless fun, or is something sinister afoot based on how JBL and Michael Cole are calling the matches? Furthermore, regardless of any social implications, is this feud actually any good in the ring?