|Is the hour of reprisal nigh, and if so, will it hurt?|
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The level of heartbreak would depend on the follow up. Owens got the most royal treatment against Cena since Daniel Bryan at SummerSlam 2013, and that has bought some goodwill from WWE on how it's going to handle this story going forward. Owens has been built up as a threat to Cena, and having him win that first match goes a long way. Cena winning at Money in the Bank actually makes a lot of sense if a third match, whether at NXT Takeover: Back to School Back to School To Prove to My Dad That I'm No Fool, Battleground, or hopefully SummerSlam, is on the table.@tholzerman how heartbroken will you be when john cena overcomes the odds and beats kevin owens at MITB— Bill (@bflip33) June 3, 2015
However, the heartbreak will indeed happen if a) Cena completely buries Owens on the mic the next night on RAW and he's not seen on the main roster until October or something, or b) if Cena cleanly or emphatically wins the blowoff match in the feud, which really should not happen. If WWE thinks it can make money with Owens, then it has to position him as a big fuckin' deal. Having him be the next Bray Wyatt or Rusev will only damage him going forward, and it'll fuel speculation that WWE is too chickenshit to try anything else BUT Cena. I mean, I get it, the guy is popular and he should be getting a lot of dap on the show, but choosing which opponents to sacrifice to him and which opponents that he should be giving a rub to is crucial at this point.
It's not a coincidence. I don't think it's in response or as a result of CM Punk's departure either, as much as it's a paradigm shift because Punk and Daniel Bryan got so over, even more than the guys WWE found on its own. Vince McMahon is always gonna have the rumors surrounding him that he wants only "his" guys on top, but at the end of the day, the name of the game is having a hot, popular, moneymaking product, right? What this indie era feels like is WWE recognizing that charged crowds and real-world match experience are assets for molding great professional wrestlers, and that having a following upon arrival to the company is not bad, but actually is good. Punk, Bryan, and to an extent Evan Bourne all paved that road for the current class, and believe me, if Punk were still around, WWE would still have signed all those faves and been pushing them in some respect.@tholzerman Is the "indy star era" in WWE a result of or response to Punk's departure, or is it all coincidence? Does DB factor? #TweetBag— Star of Savage (@StarOfSavage) June 3, 2015
No, but I admit that thought that Jessica Rabbit was a fox on Who Framed Roger Rabbit? Cartoons being hot isn't something I'm ashamed to admit (although I'm not gonna shout it off the mountaintops), but I do have my limits at finding animals attractive. It cuts a little too close to bestiality to me.@tholzerman did you ever find Bugs Bunny attractive when he wore a dress and acted like a girl bunny? #Tweetbag— Andrew Smith (@OMGitsOFS) June 3, 2015
While Lucha Underground is more like a serialized television program rather than a pure wrestling show, one doesn't necessarily need to go as far back as the premiere from last year to get some kind of idea the stories or the general oeuvre of the company. Dario Cueto is deliciously evil in nearly every episode. You don't need backstory not to trust Konnan at Prince Puma's side. The backstory before Johnny Mundo Jannettying Alberto el Patron through Cueto's office window really pales in comparison to the action and the fallout. The characters are accessible, and the wrestling action is very good.@tholzerman L.U. ?. Hard to find early eps online, but on cable on-demand starting a few weeks back. Would I miss much jumping in middle?— Jesse Cazakoff (@jessecaz) June 3, 2015
By all means, if you can access multiple prior episodes, do that, because the show is tremendous and immersive and worth your time, English or en Español. Some good jumping on points, aside from the premiere, would probably be Aztec Warfare, or where I jumped on, GRAVE CONSEQUENCES. But if your first episode was this week, you won't be disappointed.
I would put the odds at 25/1 that Austin wrestles. It's in Texas, and he's gotta have at least one match left in him after all this recovery time. But if he hasn't come back by now, each day that passes feels like it puts more doubt into whether he'll ever return. As for whether he'll work Brock Lesnar there, I feel like Heyman and Austin were working the folks to get a rise out of them. Because...@tholzerman WHAT ARE THE ODDS STONE COLD WRESTLES AT MANIA 32? AND IF HE DOES WILL IT BE AGAINST BORK LASER— LLOYD WRISTMAS (@matt_T) June 3, 2015
Honestly, I thought he should have turned face in January of 2014. How a guy can preach such an anti-establishment message and remain a heel in the face of the super-evil AUTHORITY felt more nonsensical than anything else that has happened in WWE in that time period outside of Brie and Nikki Bella forgetting that they hated each other sometime in the fall of that year. The biggest problem with Wyatt is that he's never transformed one of his targets for better or worse since being brought up, outside of Kane, whose transformation was more of convenience. Any connection between Wyatt's prophecies being "false" and having a connection to the Authority were left dangling. Bryan's run into WrestleMania XXX was fine regardless, but having the backing of the backwoods hillbilly cult that wished to destroy the world as situated would have been an awesome thing that made all the sense in the world.@tholzerman what is your take on the rumored plan to make Bray take a face turn. It has to be one of the worst ideas I've heard.— The Enrico Palazzo (@Enrico_Palazzo_) June 3, 2015
Right now, however, alignment doesn't matter for Wyatt as it did then. He's been left threadbare since the John Cena feud, and that Undertaker feud at Mania did nothing for him. He was there to take an L for Taker with no meaningful development for his character. It was like WWE decided he was in the main event without allowing him to really earn it, and well, the results are he's this shiftless demon without a family, without purpose, and without any bite behind his bark. He needs direction before anyone can start discussing what color fedora he should wear.
Yes, but only if he's a Road Dogg. Roadies, Brian Jameses, Jesse Jameses, or Brian Armstrongs are either tacos or casseroles, depending on the era.@tholzerman is a road dogg a sandwich— Violence (@PhilKenSaban) June 3, 2015
Some trust-fund baby, a sports team owner, a lottery winner who didn't direly need the jackpot, someone with a lot of cash and not a lot of responsibility. I'm looking for maximum wealth with minimum effort over here, so give me someone with money flush out of the gills and with no real responsibility other than to spend it. What I'm saying is I don't wanna do "work" anymore. I just wanna bang on me drum all day. And by bang on me drum all day, I mean write on this blog all day. Maybe not all day. Well, you get me, right? RIGHT?@tholzerman If you had a real-life MITB that allowed you to challenge any person for the job they had you wanted, who would you cash in on?— Butch Rosser (@thebutchrosser) June 3, 2015