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Report: WWE paying its female wrestlers for show they couldn’t work in Saudi Arabia

Just last week, Jerry Lawler mentioned on his podcast that he believed WWE was paying its female wrestlers for the Greatest Royal Rumble event, despite the fact they didn’t work the show. That’s because it was held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, of course, and was simply the cost of WWE doing business there.

Now, PW Insider is reporting that is indeed the case, and the women were paid “as if they had worked the show.”

If that seems wildly at odds with the message the company has been promoting about being a leader in what they call the “women’s evolution” in sports and entertainment, well, that’s because it is. This, then, would seem to be a way to ease the pain of the fairly blatant hypocrisy.

And, hey, as a standalone deal, it’s not so bad for the women, assuming the report is accurate — they got to avoid traveling across the world and then all the way back, got an extra day off, and were still paid as if they worked the event.

Then again, that’s the least WWE could do here, all things considered.

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WWE doesn’t want you to forget Titus fell on his face at Greatest Royal Rumble

We all laughed when it happened. Titus O’Neil himself leaned into it as best he could. Websites like ours posted on it and reaped the benefits of his flub. Fun times were had by all.

Now, though, it’s days later and WWE is back with yet another video showing “alternate angles” of what they’re calling the “trip heard round the world.” It’s a fairly transparent grab for views but you know what? It’s still funny.

So let’s all, once again, have a laugh while reaping the benefits of poor Titus and his faceplant.

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Documentary on Mauro’s fight against mental illness coming to Sowtime

WWE NXT, Bellator MMA and Showtime boxing announcer Mauro Ranallo has long been an outspoken advocate for those with mental health issues, and open about his own bipolar diagnosis. That included his exit from the SmackDown announce desk in 2017, which regardless of the validity of any other reports or rumors about causes and conditions, Ranallo and his friend Bas Rutten attributed in part to a recurrence of the depressive cycle of the disease.

While it probably won’t shed any new light on that situation, a new Showtime documentary on Ranallo entitled Bipolar Rock ‘N Roller will hopefully help a lot of people suffering from mental illness, and educate those looking to learn more the stuggles their friends and loved ones with bipolar and other conditions live with on a day-to-day basis.

You can watch a trailer for the doc above. Here’s the press release from the network, which includes a lot more information on Mauro’s background, the production in general, and its premiere during May’s Mental Health Awareness Month:

SHOWTIME® ANNOUNCES RAW AND REVEALING DOCUMENTARY CHRONICLING SPORTSCASTER MAURO RANALLO AND HIS LIFELONG BATTLE WITH MENTAL ILLNESS

BIPOLAR ROCK ‘N ROLLER Premieres During Mental Health Awareness Month On Friday, May 25 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME

NEW YORK – April 30, 2018 – Prolific combat sports broadcaster Mauro Ranallo and his lifelong battle with mental illness are the subject of a new documentary film from SHOWTIME Sports®. BIPOLAR ROCK ‘N ROLLER – named for the moniker Ranallo gave himself as a broadcast personality and DJ in the early 90’s – will premiere on SHOWTIME during Mental Health Awareness Month on Friday, May 25 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

Ranallo has Bipolar Affective Disorder, a condition afflicting nearly five percent of the U.S. population according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI.org). As a national sportscaster for preeminent boxing, mixed martial arts and WWE events, Ranallo has long been an advocate for ending the stigma of mental illness. Now, for the first time, he exposes the true extent of his daily struggle. Through extensive behind-the-scenes video footage, candid personal interviews and detailed accounts from his loved ones and doctors, BIPOLAR ROCK ‘N ROLLER takes an unflinching look at mental illness and its effects.

The film explores Ranallo’s career, including his work on the two biggest pay-per-view events in television history, and his relentless pursuit of a childhood dream despite seemingly insurmountable odds. Through this deeply personal portrait, Ranallo hopes that the film might inspire others to persevere in pursuing their dreams despite the challenges of a mental health condition.

“I have always tried to do my part to bring awareness to mental health issues,” said Ranallo. “Over the last several years, I allowed my best friend, Haris (Usanovic), to film me at my lowest points as well as at my highest. The idea is simply to show others who suffer that they are not alone and that, even when the outlook is bleak, you can overcome and achieve success. Mental illness is a life sentence—there is no cure—but it doesn’t have to be a death sentence.”

“Through BIPOLAR ROCK ‘N ROLLER, Mauro Ranallo has chosen to share not only his life’s dreams, but his nightmares as well,” said Stephen Espinoza, President, Sports and Event Programming for Showtime Networks Inc. “Having reached the pinnacle of his profession, Mauro bravely turns his keen observational skills inward to examine his own life-long battle. The result is a raw, poignant and ultimately inspirational film that personifies Mauro’s courage and selflessness.”

Ranallo is a popular fixture on today’s combat sports scenes. In a career that has spanned more than 30 years, he has called everything from “All-Star Wrestling,” a Canadian professional wrestling outfit, to historic MMA events for PRIDE FIGHTING CHAMPIONSHIPS out of Japan, to WWE SmackDown Live on USA Network, to many of the biggest boxing events in the world for SHOWTIME Sports. Ranallo was the first broadcaster to call play-by-play on boxing, kickboxing, MMA and professional wrestling events on national television.

Today, Ranallo is the voice of three prominent nationally televised series: SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING®, WWE’s weekly show NXT on WWE Network, andBELLATOR MMA on Paramount Network. Perhaps best known for his dramatic, excitable style, Ranallo is a student of the English language. He has already made a lasting mark on the industry having called the two biggest pay-per-view events in television history: Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao (May 2015, international telecast); and Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor (Aug. 2017, SHOWTIME PPV®).

BIPOLAR ROCK ‘N ROLLER is produced by Brian Dailey, the network’s Vice President, Sports Digital Content and Strategy, and MALKA MEDIA GROUP. Directed by first-time filmmaker Haris Usanovic, the film is executive produced by Stephen Espinoza and SHOWTIME Sports.

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Even more CONTROVERSY from Greatest Royal Rumble

Did Roman Reigns’ feet hit the floor before Brock Lesnar’s? What’s WWE doing working a show where the hosts apologize for their women’s roster appearing in their normal attire?

Okay, one of those things is infinitely serious than the other. But the point is there was a lot of controversy during Greatest Royal Rumble in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia last Friday (April 27).

And it keeps coming!

Turns out neither Hornswoggle or Shane McMahon were ever eliminated from the main event. And not in a Curtis Axel, 2015 Royal Rumble-kind of way. They entered the match and participated. But when they were sent to the floor by Tony Nese and Braun Strowman, respectively, they hadn’t exited over the top rope.

Swoggle went between the bottom and middle rope on his way to attempt a tadpole splash on Kofi Kingston before Dolph Ziggler and Nese worked him over on the apron… a face WWE itself is still promoting:

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And Shane crawled under the bottom rope (at Daniel Bryan’s direction – it happens at approximately the 4:49 mark of the WWE Network stream) while still recovering from the Coast To Coast his hit on Braun. There’s also some debate on whether or not his feet hit the ground after the eventual winner threw him through the announce table, but presumably, he would need to stand up at some point, so we’ll overlook that. Royal Rumbles live on the “sliding out under the ropes instead of not going over the top one means you weren’t eliminated” rule, though.

McMahon’s non-elimination is the trickier of the two. Not because he was likely to take out The Monster Among Men to win the Greatest Royal Rumble trophy and Championship, but because if he wasn’t removed from the match by Strowman, Reigns still owns a piece of the record for most eliminations in a single Rumble.

Of course, unlike the public relations and ethical dilemmas, WWE can alter the story to deal with Hornswoggle or Shane’s situations. Intercontinental Champ Seth Rollins even has a fun suggestion for how to handle one of them!

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Odds are they’ll just ignore ALL the CONTROVERSY and continue with business as usual, though.

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: Cedric Alexander vs. Kalisto

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The last match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is Cedric Alexander versus Kalisto.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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because a new teaser has been released which says the show is coming back. As we previously reported · Despite Apologizing to Jake “The Snake” Roberts Dave Bautista Confirms WWE Ghosted Him During WM34 Talks The post Being the Elite Is NOT En · Teaser Released (VIDEO) appeared first on Pro Wrestling Sheet | Insider Wrestling News and Reports. · the “finale” ended with a bunch of cliffhangers and during a recent interview Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson said they hadn’t decided if the s · The Young Bucks may have teased that Being The Elite was ending … but fear not

Being the Elite Is NOT Ending, Teaser Released (VIDEO)

The Young Bucks may have teased that Being The Elite was ending … but fear not, because a new teaser has been released which says the show is coming back.

As we previously reported, the “finale” ended with a bunch of cliffhangers and during a recent interview Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson said they hadn’t decided if the show was coming back.

Luckily for wrestling fans though … the guys put out a video on Monday which shows all the cast members doing various things independently and ends with Flip Gordon saying he needs to get the boys back together. A graphic then flashes over the screen saying “Being the Elite will be back.”

Watch the video below.

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The post Being the Elite Is NOT Ending, Teaser Released (VIDEO) appeared first on Pro Wrestling Sheet | Insider Wrestling News and Reports.

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WWE’s crazy travel schedule got crazier, but Rusev made the best of it

We’d already covered the wild itinerary a lot of WWE Superstars dealt with to work Greatest Royal Rumble in Saudi Arabia in the midst of a schedule which already included their usual television tapings and house shows – which, for the Raw crew, meant a quick trip to South Africa.

According to PWInsider, things got even crazier, too. After flying back to the States (via New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport) this past weekend, many went home to visit with family and/or relax for 24 hours. Some of those folks were then coming back through New York’s LaGuardia Airport on their way to this week’s Canadian dates – Raw tapes in Montreal, Quebec, tonight (April 30) while SmackDown has a house show in Ottawa, Ontario. But when they got there, they found out their connecting flight was cancelled. This left many talents from both brands scrambling to rent cars for a six hour drive to their Monday night booking.

Fun!

At least Rusev is making the best of it…

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We’ll allow the typo/auto-correcting of what we assume was supposed to be “stroll”. Look at the man’s travel schedule!

And that doesn’t even include jet lag. Or being buried with your tag partner.

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Brock is probably breaking Punk’s record for longest modern title reign

The only wrestling history which matters to WWE is the version of wrestling history they write. And despite the bitter, litigious break-up between the company and CM Punk, The ‘E still recognizes The Straight Edge Superstar’s 2011 – 2013 run with the WWE Championship as “the longest of the modern era.”

Maybe not for long, though.

One side effect of the shocking continuation of Brock Lesnar’s time with the company, and as its Universal Champion, is that he’s poised to break Punk’s 434 day record. It’s a different belt, yes. In terms of lineage, AJ Styles has the title his fellow Ring of Honor (ROH) alum once held. But just as WWE can define “the modern era” to mean “after Hogan”, they can choose to add Raw’s current top prize to their standings, too.

And they’ll be able to do so if Lesnar is still holding the red strap on June 9, 2018.

That’s more than a month away, but as of this writing, we don’t know when Brock will next wrestle – let alone when he’ll put the title on the line. We know he’s not booked for Backlash this Sunday (May 6). He’s not advertised for any, but he could show up on a Raw or for a quick house show match this month or early next. The odds of him dropping the belt at anything less than a pay-per-view (PPV) are pretty long, though. Which puts us at June 17’s Money in the Bank (in Punk’s hometown of Chicago) – where even if he loses, The Beast Incarnate will have already held the Universal Championship for 441 days.

Which isn’t to say WWE specifically planned to have Lesnar set a new record, or that their motive for doing so is to get the other Paul Heyman Guy’s name bumped down the list. It could just be a side-effect of moving away from their alleged plans to coronate Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 34. They can also decide to keep the WWE and Universal Title’s records separate.

But either way, Brock Lesnar has been Champ for a loooong time. Especially for the “modern era”.

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aka Martin Stone · but began to make appearances again for the company one year later. He’s most recently been teaming with Oney Lorcan on TV. Think Triple H m · Danny Burch — who had been consistently wrestling in NXT without a full-time contract — has reportedly signed a new deal to change that. Bur · gave a farewell speech this weekend at a Beyond Wrestling event and PWInsider reports it was because of his new full-time deal with NXT. The

NXT Wrestler Reportedly Signs Full-Time Deal

Danny Burch — who had been consistently wrestling in NXT without a full-time contract — has reportedly signed a new deal to change that.

Burch, aka Martin Stone, gave a farewell speech this weekend at a Beyond Wrestling event and PWInsider reports it was because of his new full-time deal with NXT.

The 36-year-old wrestler was released from NXT back in 2014, but began to make appearances again for the company one year later. He’s most recently been teaming with Oney Lorcan on TV.

Think Triple H made a wise decision locking Burch down? Sound off in the comments.

TRENDING STORIES

The post NXT Wrestler Reportedly Signs Full-Time Deal appeared first on Pro Wrestling Sheet | Insider Wrestling News and Reports.

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a rep for the New Orleans Police Department says the charges have not been dropped yet and explained: “Since this is a municipal charge · and I’d like to say sorry to any fans that I stressed with this situation also. I wish Jake all the best and glad that we squashed this heat. · as Roddy died not long after. We never know what might happen tomorrow · “As far as we are aware ·  Smith is wanted by police in New Orleans for throwing coffee in Jake‘s face at WrestleCon and he posted an update on social media over the w · but police say Davey still needs to be located before charges can be dropped. As we previously reported · Davey Boy Smith Jr. and Jake “The Snake” Roberts may have squashed their beef after an altercation this month · Despite Apologizing to Jake Roberts appeared first on Pro Wrestling Sheet | Insider Wrestling News and Reports. · life’s to short to hold and grudge. However · Smith is still wanted at this time.” TRENDING STORIES Dave Bautista Confirms WWE Ghosted Him During WM34 Talks Saudi General Sports Author · the victim can withdraw all charges by going through the city attorney’s office once the perpetrator has been located and either arrested or

Davey Boy Smith Still Wanted by Police, Despite Apologizing to Jake Roberts

Davey Boy Smith Jr. and JakeThe SnakeRoberts may have squashed their beef after an altercation this month, but police say Davey still needs to be located before charges can be dropped.

As we previously reported, Smith is wanted by police in New Orleans for throwing coffee in Jake‘s face at WrestleCon and he posted an update on social media over the weekend saying:

I’d like to announce publicly and officially that I spoke with Jake Roberts on the phone today and we squashed heat we have for what happened at the WrestleCon event. I apologized and said I would apologize publicly as Jake agreed he would be dropping any charges pressed against me. I’m a man of my word, and I’d like to say sorry to any fans that I stressed with this situation also. I wish Jake all the best and glad that we squashed this heat. I actually had spoken to Roddy Piper before he passed away about the podcast Jake and he did. I’m certainly glad we worked things out, as Roddy died not long after. We never know what might happen tomorrow, life’s to short to hold and grudge.

However, a rep for the New Orleans Police Department says the charges have not been dropped yet and explained: “Since this is a municipal charge, the victim can withdraw all charges by going through the city attorney’s office once the perpetrator has been located and either arrested or issued a summons.”

The rep adds, “As far as we are aware, Smith is still wanted at this time.”

TRENDING STORIES

The post Davey Boy Smith Still Wanted by Police, Despite Apologizing to Jake Roberts appeared first on Pro Wrestling Sheet | Insider Wrestling News and Reports.

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John Cena only wants to be successful so WWE is more successful

John Cena’s reputation as a WWE “company man” is well-earned. And something he’s not shy about embracing, either.

The podcast interview these quotes come from isn’t new – the episode of Chris Hardwick’s ID10T was released back at the beginning of April when Cena was first promoting Blockers – but they’re still interesting. Especially as folks are doing armchair psychology on the 41 year old in light of the end of his relationship with Nikki Bella, and wondering just how far the company, Cena and Bella might go to use that to promote Total Bellas and other WWE projects.

After discussing how lucky wrestlers working for The ‘E are, and questioning the motives of anyone who gets into the business to get famous, Cena tells Hardwick:

“For the longest, my goal – I’m a weird case because I love the company I work for. I am a company man. I know that I will not perform anywhere else in pro wrestling outside of the WWE because I love the company I work for. You have this life arc of – I would like to become a professional wrestler, I would like to earn a WWE contract, I would like to become a champion. Then, when you ask yourself why you would like to become a WWE Champion and when you broke that down, it was so more people could enjoy WWE.”

Cena also clearly loves performing in the way wrestling allows him to, and wants to change the world’s perspective on the men and women in the business from, as he says, “Oh, it’s those guys,” to “Oh, wow, okay, this kind of works”.

But when explaining why he got into acting, he’s back to saying he did it for the good of Vince McMahon’s corporation:

“I didn’t want to do movies… but the business model made sense. If I take a WWE performer and make him a movie star, then that is more eyes on WWE. Got it! That works with my mission statement, I am going to do this.”

He does talk about how he loves acting now, because after his first few efforts like The Marine and 12 Rounds were unsuccessful, he figured out how it was similar to performing in the ring, but it all comes back to how he represents his main love – WWE:

“It is a different thing because you don’t have the heartbeat of the live audience, but I get to still be creative in my own way… I never thought of crossing over other than the reason to change perception of what it means to be a WWE performer.”

That is a company man. Is it any surprise that, regardless of whether none or all of his engagment was a work, a marriage would have come second?

H/T: Wrestling Inc.

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: Jeff Hardy vs. Jinder Mahal

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The next match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is Jeff Hardy versus Jinder Mahal.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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WWE will be paying the female roster for the Greatest Royal Rumble show

WWE will be paying the female roster for the Greatest Royal Rumble show

Last week on his podcast, Jerry “The King” Lawler hinted that the women would be getting a nice payday for the Greatest Royal Rumble show that they were excluded from. At the time, the women were not told about it so there were some questions on whether Lawler was speaking on a rumor he heard […]

The post WWE will be paying the female roster for the Greatest Royal Rumble show appeared first on Wrestling News.

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and we’ll tease it · and we’ll work it and we’ll milk it. And we’ll go to Mania · ‘Hey man · ‘Well · but they just don’t make it easy. You know · I don’t know if you put any more thought into what’s going on. I’m really excited about the possibilities.’ And I literally never heard back · I don’t know what else I can do to try to… I want to end my career the right way. I’m faithful and loyal to the WWE. I’m proud of being from · I love that idea. Let’s do it!’ And so we literally talked for about like three weeks and then they just stopped calling me.” “I sent a text · me and Hunter · next year. ‘Oh · Pro Wrestling Sheet first reported Dave Bautista was ghosted by WWE during talks for a spot at WrestleMania 34 and now the “Infinity War” sta · that’s great. I’ll come back a few times during the year · the former WWE star was in talks with Triple H/WWE to tag with Ronda Rousey against The Authority and build towards a match against HHH at Wr · they just don’t.” Dave also says he’s officially going to retire from in-ring competition next year if he’s unable to make something happen

Dave Bautista Confirms WWE Ghosted Him During WrestleMania 34 Talks (AUDIO)

Pro Wrestling Sheet first reported Dave Bautista was ghosted by WWE during talks for a spot at WrestleMania 34 and now the “Infinity War” star has confirmed it happened.

For those who don’t recall, the former WWE star was in talks with Triple H/WWE to tag with Ronda Rousey against The Authority and build towards a match against HHH at WrestleMania 35. Months passed with no update though and Kurt Angle was announced without even a courtesy call to Dave.

Bautista talked about it in more detail on “Chad Dukes vs. The World” on 106.7 The Fan and had this to say about how it all went down:

“And I said, ‘Well, that’s great. I’ll come back a few times during the year, and we’ll tease it, and we’ll work it and we’ll milk it. And we’ll go to Mania, me and Hunter, next year. ‘Oh, I love that idea. Let’s do it!’ And so we literally talked for about like three weeks and then they just stopped calling me.”

“I sent a text to Hunter. I was like, ‘Hey man, I don’t know if you put any more thought into what’s going on. I’m really excited about the possibilities.’ And I literally never heard back from them. They just stopped talking to me about it. Man, I don’t know what else I can do to try to… I want to end my career the right way. I’m faithful and loyal to the WWE. I’m proud of being from there and I want to do good business with them, but they just don’t make it easy. You know, they just don’t.”

Dave also says he’s officially going to retire from in-ring competition next year if he’s unable to make something happen with WWE because he doesn’t want to be “the old guy in the ring.”

FYI — Avengers: Infinity War came out this weekend and became the biggest domestic and international opening of all-time … making a global total of $640.9 million.

Listen to the full interview below (WWE talk is near the end).

https://omny.fm/shows/bits-stuff/dave-bautista-interview/embed

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The post Dave Bautista Confirms WWE Ghosted Him During WrestleMania 34 Talks (AUDIO) appeared first on Pro Wrestling Sheet | Insider Wrestling News and Reports.

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Reason why Big Show was not at the Greatest Royal Rumble

Reason why Big Show was not at the Greatest Royal Rumble

The Greatest Royal Rumble is done and WWE is now moving towards the promotion for the Backlash pay-per-view. However, one name that we haven’t heard from in some time is The Big Show. He was originally advertised for the Greatest Royal Rumble and there was talk of him being back on WWE TV either at […]

The post Reason why Big Show was not at the Greatest Royal Rumble appeared first on Wrestling News.

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This week could be huge for Kane

This week could be huge for Kane

Tuesday is election day in Knox County, TN and that means that WWE Superstar Kane (Glenn Jacobs) has a big day as he hopes to win the Mayor seat. This likely explains why he was not at the Greatest Royal Rumble show on Friday. Several WWE Superstars, including The Undertaker, Daniel Bryan, and Big Show […]

The post This week could be huge for Kane appeared first on Wrestling News.

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This time Tommaso Ciampa has gone TOO FAR

You can betray your tag team partner, attack him at his lowest moment, cost him a championship and get him fired. But even when the person you’re doing all that to is beloved underdog hero Johnny Gargano, it’s not quite as bad as spoiling the latest Marvel Cinematic Universe blockbuster.

Which is what Tommaso Ciampa pretty much did on Sunday.

One is a guy from Cleveland living his dream with the love of his life. The other is the culmination of ten years worth of movies some fans have been waiting to see play out on screen since their childhood. Gargano will be okay no matter what. Avengers: Infinity War viewers may never recover.

The conclusion of Avengers 3 was so precious the directors of the film send out a plea weeks before its release asking early viewers to keep it to themselves out of respect for folks who wouldn’t get to see it until later.

Now, when a movie breaks every box office record in existence on its first weekend in theaters, it’s debateable how many people who are worried about being spoiled haven’t already treated themselves to seeing Infinity War firsthand. And, Ciampa doesn’t go into a lot of detail. If you’ve read the 27 year old comics which inspired it, or paid attention to any of the marketing of this movie or its already announced and filming sequel, his tweet isn’t going to catch you completely off-guard.

But still, if you haven’t seen the movie and care about going in blind…

SPOILERS (and really good heeling) AHOY:

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The Mad Titan is a bigger villain than The Sicilian Psychopath (50% of the universe > Johnny Wrestling). But Tommy Entertainment is catching up fast.

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Danny Burch is back in NXT (not that he ever really left)

Watchers of WWE Network’s NXT are familiar with Danny Burch. He’s been an on-again, off-again presence on the brand since its outset. In 2017, he was pretty prominent – featuring on the United Kingdom Championship Tournament shows, then a follow-up match against UK Champ Pete Dunne, and a series with Oney Lorcan which led to their forming a tag team which competed in the recent Dusty Rhodes Classic.

Considering all that – and his approximately three year run in Developmental before his 2014 release – it’s understandable a lot of fans probably didn’t know Burch wasn’t under contract to WWE. Sure, he works indies in Great Britain, Europe and the United States, but so do people like Dunne and Kassius Ohno, and Triple H has them locked up.

But, no. The 36 year old from Leeds was a free agent working date-by-date for NXT… until last month (according to PWInsider). Burch (aka Martin Stone) confirmed as much after his match at Beyond Wrestling’s show in Worcester, Massachusetts on Sunday (April 29):

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Burch and Lorcan seemed to set-up at least a short-term feud with Undisputed ERA on the latest episode of NXT. Both men are listed at approximately 190 pounds, meaning they could work as singles or a tag team in the Cruiserweight division. And there are UK Championship Tournament shows coming up in June, with signs a more consistent live and/or television presence for that brand is finally coming soon.

In short, there are lots of ways for Triple H to use a guy like Burch. So he put a ring on it.

Like the move? Where do you hope to see The British Brawler used in his second full-time run with WWE?

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: Wyatt & Hardy vs. The Bar

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The next match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is Bray Wyatt & Woken Matt Hardy versus Cesaro & Sheamus.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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Some McMahon-mandated mega-pushes are different from others

“Fresh” from the Arabian Peninsula, WWE heads to Montreal… where I’m pretty sure Sami Zayn is welcome and comfortable with appearing.

The Headliner(s)

Well, I was right on one of the main events at Greatest Royal Rumble.

Not only in terms of predictions, but in how important they might be to the future of the company and its flagship brand. I figured the outcome of the Universal Championship match would be telling in that regard, but I didn’t see the 50 man Rumble match as being a key piece of the same puzzle.

Yes, include me among those who thinks we saw the latest sign in Jeddah that Vince McMahon has removed his wagon from Roman Reigns and latched it onto Braun Strowman as Raw’s top babyface star. Brock Lesnar still holds the red belt, and probably will for a while longer (considering he’s not booked for this week, or Backlash, or next Monday, or the European trip that follows, or… you get the idea). Reigns has a date with SmackDown’s Samoa Joe at the May 6 co-branded pay-per-view (PPV), and something like an excuse to ask for a third shot at Lesnar after his CONTROVERSIAL loss outside the steel cage in Saudi Arabia. But especially now that he’s got a green Greatest Royal Rumble title, the momentum is with Strowman – just like fan support has been for a while.

We’ll keep watching to see how these pieces are moved around the board in the coming months, but it’s hard to imagine we won’t see Braun continue on toward another showdown with Brock. Just as fascinating will be how the next phase of what pretty much has to be looked at as a failed push for Reigns is handled. Heel turn? Trip to the mid-card? Both?

Perhaps even more curious than the seeming failure of WWE’s plans for Roman is how successful their rollout of Ronda Rousey has been. Here’s a Superstar who is every bit as company-mandated for the top as The Big Dog ever was, and with a much less fan-friendly backstory, who has been completely embraced by the fans – at least so far. Why has fighting Triple H and a McMahon worked for Rowdy when it didn’t do much for Reigns? Will the next moves – like the program with veteran Mickie James set-up last week, or future run-ins with a line-up of heel fodder like The Riott Squad which is hinted at in this week’s official WWE.com Raw preview – succeed for Ronda where feuding with the likes of Big Show and League of Nations didn’t for Roman?

Truly, I don’t have an answer. But watching these characters/performers be embraced or rejected is one of the more interesting things to watch… on the April 30 episode of Raw, and in the ‘Reality’ Era in general.

The title scene

Another guy who’s been through the ebbs and flows of fan reaction is Intercontinental titleholder Seth Rollins. After a heel run at the top which people tired of, and a return audiences tried to embrace when WWE didn’t want them to, The Kingslayer is back as a workrate hero. His ladder-leaping win over friendly rival Finn Bálor last Friday sets him up nicely for another run-in with Team Blue’s all-rudo Miz this Sunday. Once that’s done, Rollins should have a list of challengers… possibly to include his Shield brother.

Neither is quite Nicholas material, but Woken Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt will have to do. Deleters of Worlds captured the tag belts at Greatest Royal Rumble, and since the team they defeated is now on SmackDown getting ready to feud with The Usos or The New Day, they’ll need new rivals, too. The team of Drew McIntyre and Dolph Ziggler (aka “The Show”) seem like a good place to start. Or maybe Authors of Pain? Actually, who cares… the important thing is whether or not Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas are about to get Woken.

In “A Moment of Bliss”, Alexa wowed her fans with by heel-splaining her way to a rematch with Women’s champ Nia Jax. They’re headed to a rematch this Sunday, where The Irresistable Force will attempt to deal with disingenous former friend for good.

Other stuff to keep an eye on:

– The Monday night premiere of The Sami and Kevin Show started out great, because who doesn’t love to see General Manager Kurt Angle get trolled? Sadly for them, it ended with Zayn being accosted by Mike Rome after Braun and Bobby Lashley threw them around the ring (and ringside area).

– They managed to get through a ten-woman tag without attacking each other, but Sasha Banks and Bayley were still not on the same page, as the signs of their long-simmering feud continued to show up even though there weren’t any new flare-ups.

– He says he underestimated him last week… will Bobby Roode be able to win a battle of the bearded dudes the next time he tries to WWE (Walk With Elias)?

– Chad Gable did not overlook Jinder Mahal, and took down the former WWE Champ last week. Now that The Modern Day Maharajah failed to recapture the U.S. Title from Jeff Hardy at Greatest Royal Rumble, Gable may need to look higher up the card for competition.

– Do not try to dance in a conga line around Baron Corbin. Just ask No Way Jose.

It’s the Backlash ‘go home’ – and the Greatest Royal Rumble fallout – show!

What will you be looking for on Raw tonight?

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The Daily

Here’s your “Daily Open Thread” for April 30, 2018. Come chat about whatever you would like. Come back all day and night for discussion of all things pro wrestling and beyond, some of the former but much more of the latter. Basically, this is the spot to yak about anything related to anything other than pro wrestling.

Don’t forget to check out everything else we have going on here at Cageside today. Keep checking that front page for content throughout the day, but for now, scroll on down to the comments and talk about whatever your heart desires.

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Rumor Roundup: WWE Saudi Arabia return, Greatest Royal Rumble, McIntyre, more!

Speculating on the rumors surrounding pro wrestling is a favored pastime of many fans, perhaps second only to actually watching the matches. In this daily column, we take a look at the latest rumors being churned out by the pro wrestling rumor mill.

Important reminder: Rumors are just that — rumors. None of this has been confirmed as legitimate news or fact, it’s just circulating around the pro wrestling rumor mill. We track rumor accuracy in a weekly feature called Rumor Look Back you can find here. Remember, take it all with a grain of salt.

Rumors for the Day:

  • The Riyadh Report is saying WWE will return to Saudi Arabia for another show in November.
  • According to PW Insider, there were some within WWE who were not happy about going to Saudi Arabia to perform at Greatest Royal Rumble.
  • Drew McIntyre wasn’t at Greatest Royal Rumble because WWE didn’t call him up to the main roster in time enough to work out a visa for him, per the Observer.
  • Apparently some fans thought Aiden English was hurt at Greatest Royal Rumble on the Tombstone he took from Undertaker but PW Insider says he’s okay.
  • PW Insider says WWE was originally going to have Hornswoggle wrestle on the Greatest Royal Rumble Kickoff show against Wee-BL but instead decided to put him in the Rumble match.

If you have heard of any interesting rumors that you’d like to add, feel free to post them in the comments section below. Just remember they are rumors and not confirmed as fact, so please take them as such. Have fun with it. And check our weekly Rumor Look Back here to keep track of how often rumors turn out to be correct!

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Raw results, live blog: Backlash go home

WWE Monday Night Raw comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (April 30, 2018) from the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, featuring the go home show to the upcoming Backlash pay-per-view (PPV) set for this Sunday night in New Jersey.

Advertised for tonight: Braun Strowman is Greatest Royal Rumble champion, who wants to step to Ronda Rousey, and more!

Come right back here at 8 p.m. ET when the Raw live blog kicks off once the show starts on USA. It will be below this line here. (REMINDER: NO GIFS OR PICS ARE ALLOWED IN THE COMMENTS SECTION. OFFENDERS WILL BE BANNED.)


WWE RAW RESULTS AND LIVE BLOG FOR APRIL 30

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WWE called at just the right time for Luke Harper

Luke Harper did an interview with Rochester First and told a damn good story of how he came to work for WWE. Essentially, they came calling at just the right time:

“My wife told me she was pregnant and I lost my job, I was a librarian at Frederick Douglas Middle School and so I thought the world was over and they called and said, “Hey, can you come for a trial and I said, ‘No, I have a broken leg,’” Huber remembers.

Six months went by.

“My wife was 8 months pregnant and I was just coming back from Japan and I said, ‘Honey, I’m done, this is it, I’m just going to go get another real job and we’ll make do here,’ and that’s the day (WWE called saying), ‘Hey, can you come for a tryout?’” Huber said.

Harper’s run with the company has had its ups and downs but he’s currently one half of the SmackDown tag team champions. At 38-years-old, he’s doing very well for himself and there’s no reason to think he can’t work at a high level for many years to come.

We’re all better off for it.

Just think if WWE didn’t make that call on that particular day.

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WWE Superstars had a brutal travel schedule this week and it just got worse

WWE Superstars had a brutal travel schedule this week and it just got worse

If you thought that WWE Superstars had a crazy travel schedule with the flight to Saudi Arabia, things got worse for them when they got back to the United States. Many WWE stars returned home on Saturday and spent a few hours with their families. They had to turn back around and board a flight […]

The post WWE Superstars had a brutal travel schedule this week and it just got worse appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: Bludgeon Brothers vs. The Usos

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The next match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is the Bludgeon Brothers versus the Usos.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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WWE signs independent wrestling star to NXT contract

WWE signs independent wrestling star to NXT contract

Beyond Wrestling said goodbye to Martin Stone (aka Danny Burch on NXT) at their show on Sunday. Burch had been working on NXT shows for years (since 2015 during this recent run) but was not under a long-term contract so that allowed him to work elsewhere. Now, he will be working exclusively for WWE and […]

The post WWE signs independent wrestling star to NXT contract appeared first on Wrestling News.

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WATCH: Muhammad Hassan returns to the ring for the first time in 13 years

WATCH: Muhammad Hassan returns to the ring for the first time in 13 years

It’s a good time to be a wrestling fan. WWE is on track to have their most profitable year in history and they have the most loaded roster ever. The independent scene is hot with a mix of the best athletes and former WWE stars attempting to reinvent themselves in hopes for another run. Sometimes […]

The post WATCH: Muhammad Hassan returns to the ring for the first time in 13 years appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Matt Hardy explains what really happened to Titus O’Neil at the Greatest Royal Rumble

Matt Hardy explains what really happen to Titus O’Neil at the Greatest Royal Rumble

We noted earlier that WWE.com and several Superstars are having fun commenting on Titus O’Neil’s botch at the Greatest Royal Rumble. It certainly seems like the trip, fall and slide underneath the ring has overshadowed everything else that took place on that show. Now, “Woken” Matt Hardy is joining in on the fun but he […]

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Analysis of how crowded the ring was during the Greatest Royal Rumble match

The Greatest Royal Rumble match lasted 77 minutes and 19 seconds (77m 19s).

This text graphic provides time stamps for each superstar’s arrival and exit from the match, as well as showing who the longest lasting superstars were as the match progressed.


If you add up each wrestler’s survival time, it results in a total survival time of 7h 30m 56s. Given that the match lasted a total of 77m 19s, that comes out to an average of 5.8 competitors in the ring at any given second. That makes this the 16th most crowded Royal Rumble match ever out of all 33 matches, and right in line with the typical crowdedness of an average Royal Rumble match.

When I talk about how many superstars were “in the ring,” I’m counting all active superstars in the match, whether they are literally inside the ring or not. It does not, however, count a superstar’s time outside the ring prior to initially stepping foot into the ring. So Curt Hawkins did not receive any credit for running away from Braun Strowman on the entrance ramp.

Here is a more accurate way to understand how many men were active at any given time. This chart shows the total time that the ring was filled with an exact number of discrete superstars at once.

For the first 12m 07s of the match, the average ring crowdedness was 2.8 active superstars at any given second. Bryan, Ziggler, and Henry dominated this early section while other competitors like Kanellis, Axel, Sin Cara, and Sumi didn’t survive for long.

The ring had 4 superstars at the timestamp 12m 07s, gradually rose up to 7 men in the ring, and then dropped back down to 4 men at the timestamp 22m 36s after Kurt Angle joined the match and quickly tossed out three competitors. During this time, the average ring crowdedness was 5.1 active superstars at any given second.

The ring was then filled with at least 5 superstars from the timestamps 22m 36s through 57m 42s.

Peak crowdedness for the match occurred between the timestamps 35m 56s through 55m 14s, which saw an average of 8.7 active superstars at any given second. The ring only dipped under 8 men for 0m 44s of that duration. The maximum crowdedness of 11 men in the ring was achieved when Braun Strowman entered the ring at 55m 03s.

Not surprisingly, Braun’s entry into the match quickly emptied the ring. There were only 4 men remaining at the time stamp 57m 46s, so the ring dropped from 11 men to 4 men in less than 3 minutes. Tye Dillinger was the only new entry into the match in that short time span, but he was quickly tossed out as one of Braun’s victims.

The ring crowdedness kept alternating between 3 and 4 men between the timestamps 57m 42s and 66m 15s. This portion was dominated by Bryan, Strowman, Elias, and Lashley, with brief appearances from Curt Hawkins and the Great Khali.

The final 5 entrants into the match all entered without any eliminations taking place in between, and so the ring was filled back up with 8 men once Chris Jericho entered the ring at the timestamp 72m 01s.

The 8m 48s time span between Khali’s elimination (63m 47s) and Benjamin’s elimination (72m 35s) was the longest stretch in the match without any eliminations. The only other 5+ minute stretch without any eliminations occurred earlier between the exits of Ziggler (21m 43s) and Konnor (27m 25s).

When Jericho entered the ring, the match essentially turned into an 8-man Battle Royal to the finish between Bryan, Strowman, Lashley, Owens, Shane, Benjamin, Big Cass, and Jericho.

This final segment of the Greatest Royal Rumble match lasted 5m 18s, and at that point Braun Strowman emerged as the winner.

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Former WWE star says he “cried like a baby” when he saw Finn Balor’s LGBT WrestleMania entrance

Former WWE star says he “cried like a baby” when he saw Finn Balor’s LGBT WrestleMania entrance

In recent years, WWE has made a commitment to be as diverse as possible. There are more minorities featured on their programming these days and they are now making a bigger push to reach out to the LGBT community. A decade ago, it would have been unlikely to see a Superstar reach out to the […]

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Aiden English responds to injury reports after being tombstoned by The Undertaker

Aiden English responds to injury reports after being tombstoned by The Undertaker

One of the highlights (aside from Titus O’Neil’s entrance botch) was The Undertaker’s return to action, his first match since WrestleMania and a very rare non-WrestleMania appearance for him. Taker looked good and the match went longer than his Mania match John Cena. Clearly, if he is up for it, he has at least a […]

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Corey Graves comments on women’s rights following Greatest Royal Rumble

Corey Graves comments on women’s rights following Greatest Royal Rumble

There has been a ton of media coverage surrounding the Greatest Royal Rumble pay-per-view. WWE has called the show a success and they are hoping that in a few years women will be able to take part in future events. In the days leading up to the show, Triple H talked about the changes be […]

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Wrestling Hi no Kuni match recommendations: Down too long in the midnight sea

This year’s edition of Wresting Hi no Kuni is in the history books, so without further ado aside from pointing you at full results right here, as well as my recommendations for the title matches held over the past week right here, let’s get on with breaking down the matches, shall we?

As always, I’ve got a very simple five point scale laid out where a 1 is total skip, 2 you can probably skip unless you love one of the folks in it, 3 is a match that’s worth watching but not necessarily worth making time for, a 4 is a solid recommendation to make time for if you can, and a 5 is a must-watch.

Mind you, these are not star ratings. They’re not meant to be absolute ratings in any sense, but rather a simple (and hopefully sensible) way to determine if a match is worth your time. A one is not necessarily a bad match, but rather just one I feel like you’re best off skipping. I have my biases, of course, but hopefully I can make it easy for you to adjust for them.

Ren Narita & Yuji Nagata vs. Shota Umino & Tomoyuki Oka (2): Pretty standard young lions and veteran opening tag here, and Umino continues to stand out and has a couple of great moments bringing the fight to Nagata. Fun to check in on how the next generation is progressing, but hardly essential.

Chaos (“Switchblade” Jay White, Rocky Romero, SHO, & YOH) vs. David Finlay, Jushin Liger, Ryusuke Taguchi, & Tiger Mask IV (2): Bit of a departure from the standard undercard tag formula, with Rocky abusing Tiger Dad early and the babyfaces breaking the match down to get revenge, followed by Chaos returning the favor to isolate a freshly-tagged Liger. Hot tag from Taguchi, he runs (butt) wild on everybody, and then we settle into the normal formula, cycling through matchups until it’s time to go home. Fun stuff, and the variety is appreciated, but nothing you need to make time to watch, folks.

Chaos (Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano) vs. Toa Henare & Togi Makabe (2): Yano starting for Chaos, immediately into his shenanigans but Makabe isn’t having it and he and Henare pull ahead even as Ishii relieves his stablemate. Toa left in control a bit too long, the Chaosmen get the advantage back, the tables turn once more, and we head to the finish on a mini-rematch between Tom and Henare on our way to our finish. Not bad, but again, nothing here you’re dying to see, especially not if you watched the singles.

Bullet Club (Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi) & Golden Lovers (Kenny Omega & Kota Ibushi) vs. Suzuki-gun (Taichi, TAKA Michinoku, Takashi Iizuka, & Zack Sabre, Jr.) (3): Chaos from the bell with Suzuki-gun on the attack, the match appears in danger of settling down as Yujiro cleans house but Iizuka keeps the ball rolling, biting everyone everywhere. Finally business picks up with Golden Lovers in, big dives, ZSJ has exchanges with everybody and the match breaks down again as Suzuki-gun reassert control on our way to the finish.

There’s a lot to like about this, principally any time Ibushi, Omega, or Sabre were in doing stuff (and Zack got some really fun preview action in on a hypothetical feud with the Best Bout Machine), but slow start and the Iizuka biting nonsense (he was really intent on stopping anything interesting from happening for far too long) really drags it down. I can’t quite pan it because the fun stuff was really fun, but… watch accordingly.

Chaos (Hirooki Goto, Kazuchika Okada, Will Ospreay, & YOSHI-HASHI) vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi, Juice Robinson, KUSHIDA, & Michael Elgin (3): Okada and Tanahashi to start, just beating on each other, and the once and future Ace isolates the champion and passes him off to his teammates to work over for a while, but Chaos quickly break the match down and restore their own unique form of order to the proceedings. Juice plays face in peril, Okada and Tanahashi fight on the floor, and eventually we move on to a preview of our junior title match.

The final phase of the match sees Tacos take center stage and make a valiant stand against the Ace before things break down into a round of “everybody do something cool” and we get the finish. This was really enjoyable stuff– maybe not strictly speaking necessary considering that most of what you’ll see here, you’ll see crisper and better on Wednesday and Thursday, but a good time all the same.

BUSHI vs. El Desperado (3): BUSHI starts hot with a slingshot Frankensteiner to the floor at the bell! Continuing the abuse outside and in, choking him with his t-shirt, but Desperado isn’t above an underhanded trick or two to keep himself in the match and we’ve got a fight on our hands. Despy takes things outside and up the ramp and back in, attacking BUSHI’s mask all the way. Back and forth, BUSHI fights back into it, trading bombs and waiting for the one that will finish the match.

Some good highspots here and generally enjoyable action, but a weak finish and little feeling of ever getting into gear keep me from giving this one a strong recommendation.

Hiromu Takahashi vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru (3): Kanemaru in control early, attacking before the bell and brutalizing Takahashi on the floor. Inside and out, Desperado gets involved, and Hiromu is down but not out just yet. Indeed, he gets back into it with a lariat and charging strikes, willing himself to build up a head of steam to fight on. The sailing isn’t totally smooth, Kanemaru overtakes him time and again and forces him to find a new way to get back into it, but that’s the story of the match.

Very much two of a kind with the previous match, this has a stronger finish but not quite enough to push it across the line for me.

Killer Elite Squad (Davey Boy Smith, Jr. & Lance Archer) vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (EVIL & SANADA) (c) (IWGP Tag Team Championship) (1): KES on the attack from the jump, taking the champions outside and beating them down. They keep SANADA isolated in the ring and work him over until EVIL gets the hot tag and bowls Archer over hard. KES regain control, a table comes into play, but with Archer and Smith in control so long, this match is lifeless and incredibly hard to care about.

Like, as a match in a vacuum, it’s fine, but Killer Elite Squad are so played out and stale and bring so little energy to the proceedings that they’ve got me sitting here yawning at a Killer Bomb through a table to the floor. EVIL and SANADA are fresh champions and I know they’re quite capable of having good to great tag matches, but this… is not one of those matches and comes off as a total dud. Pass.

Minoru Suzuki (c) vs. Tetsuya Naito (IWGP Intercontinental Championship) (1): Naito tries mind games early and just raises Suzuki’s ire in the process, but he still manages to use a trip to the floor to take control on the champion. Back outside, the tide turns, Minoru hucking barricades and chairs at his challenger before taking it back in the ring to wrench and tear at the Stardust Genius, probing for any weakness. Naito puts a run together, targeting Suzuki’s neck repeatedly, and we get a back and forth run for a good while until Minoru targets the knee and finds his opening.

Tetsuya on the comeback, the match now clearly about if he can overwhelm the odds with an angry Minoru Suzuki trying to tear his leg off, and… the match starts to fall apart a little. I don’t know whether it’s injury, a bad night at the office, or what, but Naito’s been a half step off all match and the gap is widening the later we go here. Suzuki is incredibly spry for 49 but there are limits to what he can do when the wheels come off.

At one point Minoru has a sleeper on, Tetsuya fights out and goes to hit a move, and what happens is honestly just shy of the Whisper in the Wind from Jinder Mahal vs. Jeff Hardy at Greatest Royal Rumble on the “Yikes, what was that?” scale. I’m all for sloppy, gritty, realistic execution, but… this was just bad.

Honestly, this was on-track to be another must-watch “Hey look I might not have LOVED it but you should at least give it a chance and find out yourself” type New Japan main event, but it goes off the rails so hard and so completely that I can’t in good conscience recommend it at all. Pass.

There you have it, folks

Agree? Disagree? Feel free to toss in your two cents below, Cagesiders.

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Reason why Drew McIntyre did not appear at the Greatest Royal Rumble

Reason why Drew McIntyre did not appear at the Greatest Royal Rumble

Most of the male roster flew out for Friday’s Greatest Royal Rumble show with a few exceptions. As previously noted, Sami Zayn did not go out of respect to the Saudi culture because of Zayn’s previous statements about the conflict with Syria. The Big Show, although advertised for weeks, was also not on the show. […]

The post Reason why Drew McIntyre did not appear at the Greatest Royal Rumble appeared first on Wrestling News.

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A former WWE star has a message for Titus O’Neil following Greatest Royal Rumble botch

A former WWE star has a message for Titus O’Neil following Greatest Royal Rumble botch

WWE/WCW Legend Fred Ottman is known to many fans as Tugboat or Typhoon from the Natural Disasters. However, a large portion of the wrestling fanbase also knows him for one big incident that will forever go down as one of the funniest moments on WCW television. It was on a Clash of the Champions special […]

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Big changes for Total Bellas because of John Cena and Nikki Bella’s break-up

Big changes for Total Bellas because of John Cena and Nikki Bella’s break-up

The E! Network is making changes to the upcoming season of Total Bellas. The upcoming season was supposed to culminate with the Nikki Bella-John Cena wedding but, obviously, that will not be happening. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter noted this week that the production crew already has a break-up scene with Nikki and […]

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Jake Roberts drops charges against Davey Boy Smith Jr.

Jake Roberts drops charges against Davey Boy Smith Jr.

The issues between Jake “The Snake” Roberts and Davey Boy Smity Jr. have been resolved. Roberts has agreed to drop all charges for the incident that took place at WrestleCon. Smith confronted Roberts during WrestleMania weekend about comments Roberts made about his father a few years ago on Roddy Piper’s podcast. It led to Smith […]

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WWE is not doing Mike Kanellis wrong, according to Mike Kanellis

When Mike and Maria Kanellis showed up in WWE, there seemed to be great potential for the duo who were pushing the power of love. They were given an incredible theme song and seemed to be in line for, at the very least, a mid-card spot on SmackDown Live. Then she got pregnant and he just sort of disappeared in the background, hardly ever used on television.

A couple weeks ago, he was moved to Monday Night Raw in the Superstar Shakeup and immediately started working the Main Event tapings. In the 50-man Greatest Royal Rumble he was eliminated in three seconds.

A fan watching may think WWE is doing him wrong, and plenty have taken to social media to voice as much. Kanellis himself tried to help give these folks some perspective:

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

When confronted with the idea that some are happy just to work for WWE while others want to be the top guy:

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

Leave it to Titus O’Neil to lay it down:

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

Hard to argue with him here. It’s all too easy for fans to forget it’s a marathon, not a sprint.

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: Rollins vs. Balor vs. Miz vs. Joe

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The next match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is the ladder match featuring Seth Rollins vs. Finn Balor vs. Samoe Joe vs. The Miz.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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Brock’s match at Greatest Royal Rumble didn’t even last as long as the Cruiserweights

WWE featured 10 total matches on the main card of Greatest Royal Rumble (Fri., April 27, 2018) from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

The main card of this pay-per-view (PPV) lasted 5 hours, 0 minutes, and 16 seconds (5h 00m 16s). Here is a sorted list of the bell-to-bell times for the 10 matches that took place during this event:

  • 77m 19s: Greatest Royal Rumble Match
  • 15m 45s: John Cena vs. Triple H
  • 14m 33s: Rollins vs. Balor vs. Miz vs. Joe
  • 14m 26s: AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
  • 10m 14s: Cedric Alexander vs. Kalisto
  • 9m 38s: Undertaker vs. Rusev
  • 9m 14s: Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns
  • 8m 51s: Deleters of Worlds vs. The Bar
  • 6m 10s: Jeff Hardy vs. Jinder Mahal
  • 5m 09s: Bludgeon Brothers vs. The Usos

These times add up to 2h 51m 19s, which is roughly 57.1% of the show. For comparison’s sake, the overall match time percentage for all WWE PPVs since the start of 2013 is 54.1%.

Are you surprised by any of these results, Cagesiders? Which of these matches received less (or more) time than you hoped for?

Don’t forget to keep it here at Cageside Seats for a full breakdown of the timing for the entire Greatest Royal Rumble PPV!

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Beyond Welcome Home Night Two live results: Janela vs. Hot Sauce

Beyond Wrestling returns to Powerbomb.tv today at 2PM Eastern with Welcome Home Night Two in Worcester, Massachusetts. So sign up (with a ten-day free trial, twenty days with promo code BEYOND) or log in, have a sit-down, and chat about it with the finest pro wrestling community on the internet while you watch, whether that’s on your computer or through the brand new Roku app that Powerbomb have released for public beta testing.

Best of all, the action kicks off with the free Powerbomb.tv Pre-Game, and you’ll be able to watch it right here.

Powerbomb.tv Pre-Game (2PM Eastern)

Welcome Home Night Two (3:30PM Eastern)

Cam Zagami vs. Wheeler YUTA

Beaver Boys (Alex Reynolds & John Silver) vs. Massage NV (Dorian Graves & VSK)

Amityville Project (Dan Barry, Mike Verna, Rex Lawless, & Ryan Galeone) vs. Team Pazuzu (Angel Ortiz, Chris Dickinson, Jaka, & Mike Draztik)

Josh Briggs vs. Martin Stone

Flip Gordon vs. Puma King

Dream Team (Jonathan Gresham & Stokely Hathaway) vs. Nick Gage & ???

Matt Riddle vs. Maxwell Jacob Friedman

Jordynne Grace vs. Kimber Lee

Joey Janela vs. “Hot Sauce” Tracy Williams (c) (Powerbomb.tv Independent Wrestling Championship)

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What wrestlers are Sam Roberts and Peter Rosenberg talking about here?

Peter Rosenberg joined Sam Roberts for a special episode of the Sam Roberts Wrestling Podcast and one of the first topics they touched on, naturally, was social media. To that end, they both gave interesting quotes on it regarding wrestlers and how they deal with it.

From around the 11:45 mark of the above video:

Rosenberg: “We live in a world now where people say negative stuff all the time. Wrestlers deal with it all the time. We know, from getting to be around, how much there are certain people who are really affected by what people say. There are people whose matches end and they’re sitting there on Twitter and you can see they’re scrolling through right away to see what people think.”

Roberts: “I’ll never say who but there are certain giant stars in the WWE, in popularity, that have Twitter alerts, like the tweets come up on their phone on the lock screen. And I’m like ‘I can’t believe that.’ I don’t know, it could be just verified. It might be. I hope it’s just verified people. It must just be verified people because the phone would never stop. But I saw somebody’s phone just going crazy with… And I’m like… it just seems torturous. It doesn’t seem like there could be anything constructive to come out of this.”

So who do you think they are talking about?

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: John Cena vs. Triple H

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The next match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is John Cena versus Triple H.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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The complete list of survival times for the Greatest Royal Rumble match

The Greatest Royal Rumble match lasted 77 minutes and 19 seconds (77m 19s).

The survival time for a superstar is the time that lapses between the point when he steps foot into the ring and the time that his feet hit the floor to signal elimination. This does not include the time it takes for a superstar to make his way from the entrance ramp down to the actual ring (or under the ring, in the case of Titus O’Neil).

The average superstar survival time for the Greatest Royal Rumble match was 9m 01s and the median survival time was 6m 35s.

Here is the full list of survival times for all 50 superstars:

  • 76m 06s: Daniel Bryan
  • 34m 05s: Elias
  • 22m 16s: Braun Strowman
  • 21m 43s: Dolph Ziggler
  • 20m 24s: Rey Mysterio
  • 17m 45s: Bobby Roode
  • 16m 35s: Kofi Kingston
  • 16m 22s: Rhyno
  • 14m 39s: Bobby Lashley
  • 14m 00s: Big E
  • 11m 44s: Scott Dawson
  • 10m 58s: Randy Orton
  • 10m 43s: Kevin Owens
  • 10m 09s: Tucker Knight
  • 10m 04s: Goldust
  • 9m 57s: Xavier Woods
  • 9m 17s: Luke Gallows
  • 8m 52s: Mojo Rawley
  • 8m 17s: Chad Gable
  • 8m 08s: Shane McMahon
  • 8m 00s: Kurt Angle
  • 7m 38s: Heath Slater
  • 7m 23s: Big Cass
  • 7m 13s: Tony Nese
  • 7m 09s: Baron Corbin
  • 6m 00s: Roderick Strong
  • 5m 54s: Babatunde
  • 5m 11s: Primo
  • 4m 43s: Titus O’Neil
  • 4m 26s: Karl Anderson
  • 4m 24s: Shelton Benjamin
  • 3m 42s: Fandango
  • 3m 29s: Mark Henry
  • 3m 26s: Apollo Crews
  • 3m 19s: Chris Jericho
  • 2m 25s: Konnor
  • 2m 02s: Dan Matha
  • 1m 59s: Curtis Axel
  • 1m 48s: Drew Gulak
  • 1m 34s: Bo Dallas
  • 1m 27s: Dash Wilder
  • 1m 18s: Sin Cara
  • 1m 00s: Hornswoggle
  • 0m 51s: Viktor
  • 0m 47s: Hiroki Sumi
  • 0m 34s: Great Khali
  • 0m 30s: Tye Dillinger
  • 0m 21s: Curt Hawkins
  • 0m 16s: Tyler Breeze
  • 0m 03s: Mike Kanellis

Many of these times strongly agree with their counterparts on the official list of survival times from WWE’s web site. The only cases that WWE lists more than 5 seconds apart from mine are Roderick Strong (6m 00s vs. 3m 59s) and Daniel Bryan (76m 06s vs. 76m 16s).

During the actual rumble match, Michael Cole stated that Bryan’s survival time was 76m 05s, which falls within one second of my listed time, so I’m just going to assume the listed time of 76m 16s on WWE’s web site is a typo. As for Roderick Strong, I have no idea how to explain the discrepancy. I stand by my calculated survival time of 6m 00s for him.

That’s not to say my times are perfect. Every listed time should be viewed with a margin of error of about 3 seconds or so.

The bell to end the match did not ring until about 1 second after Big Cass was eliminated. I counted this extra second as part of Strowman’s survival time.

If Daniel Bryan was magically erased from the record books, the average survival time in this match would drop from 9m 01s to 7m 39s.

One name that stands out to me for high survival times is Rhyno, who finished 8th out of 50 names. Tucker Knight and Goldust also stand out for being two of just 15 superstars who managed to survive for at least 10 minutes.

So there you have it, Cagesiders. Which of the above numbers surprise you the most? Are you cool with the fact that 15 of the 50 superstars did not even last 2 minutes and 30 seconds?

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This Week: What’s next for Roman?, Strong vs. Dunne, Tanahashi vs. Okada

There’s a ton of wrestling content nowadays and unless you’re a hardcore pro-graps fan, you have to decide what to watch when and what to consider leaving out. That’s where we come in to help.

Every week, we are going to run down the big in-ring happenings for the easily accessible US wrestling. This won’t cover your indie needs, but ReverendClaire always has you covered in her weekly Sermon on the Mat for that.

Bear in mind, matches could be added after this posts that would definitely change how worth a show is to watch.

Monday

Raw (USA Network)

This is the go-home show for the Backlash pay-per-view (PPV).

Now with the Greatest Royal Rumble/Greatest House Show in the books, they can move forward with the stories they were planning.

While nothing is advertised for Raw, I think the most interesting thing to watch for is what is next for Roman Reigns. The Big Dog was unsuccessful against Lesnar yet again in Saudi Arabia.

Roman has a fight against Samoa Joe at Backlash. Is this it in regards to Reigns in the title picture? For my money, that’s the most interesting thing coming into this episode.

Verdict: The Reigns stuff is the most interesting, but I felt Raw did a good job last week utilizing their new roster. Those things together makes this an interesting Raw to check out.

Tuesday

SmackDown Live (USA Network)

Nothing from the Greatest Royal Rumble really affected the blue brand.

Nakamura vs. AJ Styles ended in a double count out so they’ll do it again at Backlash. More chances for Nak to crush Styles’ balls!

Big Cass eliminated Daniel Bryan from the Greatest Rumble, where DBry was the Iron man and in the final three. They were already set for Backlash.

Verdict: SmackDown had a fine show last Tuesday as well, though doesn’t have the hook that Raw does with the Reigns loss fallout. Will likely be a solid show though.

205 Live (WWE Network)

Cedric Alexander fended off Kalisto in Jeddah two days ago. What’s next for the cruiserweight champion.

Nothing is yet advertised, but that will likely be the focus of this show.

Verdict: In ring action still delivers on this show, but since the tournament, episodes feel a bit more lost.

Wednesday

NXT (WWE Network)

This week’s big match is Pete Dunne vs. Roderick Strong. It will be the first time that they are in the same building since Strong stabbed Dunne in the back to join the Undisputed ERA at TakeOver: New Orleans.

Other matches we’ll see are Bianca Belair vs. Candice LeRae and TM61 vs. the Street Profits.

Verdict: Personally, I’m really excited to see Dunne get his hands on Strong. I was hoping we’d see him ambush him unannounced first, but this will be fine. Maybe it’ll set up a British Strong Style vs. Undisputed ERA thing. If you loved the angle as much as I did, it’s one to watch.

Thursday

New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Wrestling Dontaku Night 1 (NJPW World)

The esteemed Reverend Claire described this two night event as “medium sized” shows when it comes to the importance of NJPW events. She notes due to the main event of night two, this round has a bit more impact.

Night one, which will air very early in the US, is focused on the Bullet Club issues. While most of the matches are tag matches, as is New Japan’s style, the two top matches on the card are singles BC/Golden Lovers issues.

In a rematch from Wrestle Kingdom, Kota Ibushi will take on Cody. And in the main event, Kenny Omega will battle Hangman Page.

This is the first time we’ll see these guys on the same card since Cody went over Kenny at Supercard of Honor.

Verdict: The Bullet Club stuff should be interesting. I never watch all the tags in these shows but will probably check out the two single’s matches in the card if I find time.

Impact Wrestling (Pop TV)

This week is advertising Su Yung vs. Rosemary as this top match.

Also, Matt Sydal will defend his X Division title against Taiji Ishimori.

The world title picture has Pentagon as champ, Austin Aries, who is owned a rematch but still nursing his arm after Pentagon broke it, and Eli Drake who holds the world title Feast or Fired briefcase.

Verdict: It feels like Impact is on a bit of an upswing so they’re worth at least keeping an eye on.

Friday

New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Wrestling Dontaku Night 2 (NJPW World)

Night two is the bigger of the two shows just given the main event.

Kazuchika Okada will defend his IWGP heavyweight title against Hiroshi Tanahashi.

In the other single’s match, Will Ospreay defends his junior heavyweight title against KUSHIDA.

Verdict: If you’re going to watch one night, it’d probably be this one. The Okada/Tanahashi main event is something to check out. Though some fans may enjoy the Bullet Club drama more than anything else. For those people, it’s night one.


If I could only watch one thing this week, it’d be:

Raw

Only because I really want to know how they handle Reigns now that Brock is in his rearview mirror. Is he in the rearview mirror? Or is this just a long path to get there at a later date? Either way, seeing Roman drop two in a row against Brock was quite the surprise. I’m very curious how he’s presented on Monday.

Let us know what you’d choose below.


There’s a ton of other wrestling out there and we can’t cover it all on here. So if there’s something you’re particularly excited for this week, let your fellow wrestling fans know in the comments.

See ya next week!

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Rumor Look Back: Oct. 22 – 28, 2017

Welcome to the weekly Rumor Look Back, where we look at the rumors from six months ago and see which played out as originally predicted. Let’s jump right in.

October 23, 2017

  • While Kurt Angle will never be full-time, look for more matches from him in the future, probably at “Big 4” PPVs.
  • He didn’t work the Royal Rumble, but this looks like how it’ll go. He worked Survivor Series and WrestleMania since debuting. (1/1)
  • A rematch of Finn Balor vs. AJ Styles could be one of the Raw vs. SmackDown matches planned for Survivor Series.
  • AJ ended up winning the WWE title and facing Brock Lesnar. Finn was on the Raw Survivor Series team. (0/1)
  • If WWE is still interested in a Four Horsewomen feud, it won’t be happening at Survivor Series. They may have cooled on the idea altogether, instead focusing on Ronda Rousey as a solo act.
  • It did not happen at Survivor Series. Ronda didn’t even officially debut until the Royal Rumble. I still bet it will happen at one point. Shayna is already NXT champ. Jessemyn Duke and Marina Shafir would be the two they’d have to really train. But it’s a story that’s been set up somewhat already. It’ll eventually happen if at all possible. (1/1)
  • Seems like a long shot, but it’s out there… ProWrestling.com says they’ve heard that New Japan is interested in getting Chris Jericho to face Kenny Omega at Wrestle Kingdom 12.
  • Long shot happened! (1/1)

Special Raw rumor round up Oct. 23

  • Shane McMahon is backstage in Green Bay (site of tonight’s show). He could be there to announce the Raw vs. SmackDown men’s match for Houston. Numerous blue brand talents are said to be at the arena for Monday night’s filming. They could be there for the reveal of a traditional five-on-five elimination, or one of the other planned PPV bouts.
  • He was there. However, he didn’t announce any matches. Kurt Angle set up the matcesh. Shane straight up attacked. (1/2)
  • Alexa Bliss and Natalya will have a champ vs. champ singles match at Survivor Series, but there will also be a women’s team match like last year.
  • Bliss faced Charlotte, who was champ by the time Survivor Series rolled around. They did have a women’s 5 on 5 as well. (1/2)
  • Sasha Banks and Bayley will wrestle tonight to determine who captains the red team.
  • It was actually a three way with Alisha Fox which Foxy won. (0/1)
  • SmackDown will hold a 5-way match tomorrow to determine the captain of their women’s squad.
  • That’s true. Becky Lynch won. (1/1)
  • Brock Lesnar will accept Jinder Mahal’s challenge, and folks backstage think John Cena may be the guest referee for that non-title match.
  • Brock accepted the challenge but the match never happened because AJ Styles won the title. Cena was not the referee to the match that happened. (1/2)
  • Other expected champ vs. champ matches for Survivor Series include Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins against The Usos, and Baron Corbin against The Miz.
  • Corbin vs. the Miz happened. The Bar ended up defeating Rollins and Ambrose prior to the show so it was the Bar vs. the Usos. That may be a full fledged feud now that they are both on SmackDown. (1/2)
  • Kane vs. Braun Strowman is probably happening, and may be further set-up tonight with Kane backstage in Wisconsin.
  • Yeah, that happened. (1/1)
  • In other not fully-interbrand action, the cruiserweights will have a Team Enzo vs. Team Kalisto match which is expected to be announced tonight. It does have some SmackDown flavor, with Sin Cara joining his old tag partner’s squad along with Mustafa Ali, Rich Swann and Cedric Alexander against Amore, Tony Nese, Drew Gulak, Noam Dar and Ariya Daivari.
  • This match happened on Raw this night. Sin Cara was not involved though. (1/2)

October 24, 2017

  • Another, probably more likely reason for the Chris Jericho/Kenny Omega Twitter issues from this past weekend – Wrestling Inc says it may be to set up an angle for the Ring of Honor tournament on Jericho’s upcoming cruise.
  • To the surprise of most at this time six months ago, it happened at Wrestle Kingdom. Jericho has not been promoting a rematch for the cruise. (0/1)
  • Vince McMahon came up with the idea for Kurt Angle to replace Roman Reigns at TLC last Thursday, according to PWInsider. He was cleared on Friday, and the WWE promotional machine immediately went into action.
  • They had to work quickly on this one.
  • Reigns may be expected back before Survivor Series, but Wrestling Observer says there’s no timetable for Bray Wyatt and Bo Dallas’ return from viral infection. They’ll be evaluated with Roman next Monday.
  • Reigns was back the week prior to Survivor Series. He and the Shield worked the New Day at the PPV. (1/1)
  • Jeff Jarrett missed an independent booking Saturday night in Canada after showing up in poor condition for the same promotion on Friday. Inc says fans walked out, and the company (RCW) announced Jarrett headed back to the U.S. “due to his own issues”.
  • Jarrett ended up checking into rehab and hopefully is keeping his house in order. He went into the WWE Hall of Fame this year.

Special SmackDown Rumor Roundup

  • As they reported yesterday, there’s still expected to be a 5-Way match to determine the captain of SmackDown’s women’s team. Participants should be Charlotte Flair, Tamina, Becky Lynch, Carmella and Naomi.
  • This is a freebie for the rumors since it’s the exact same rumor as the day before. The exact participants was correct. (2/2)
  • A match between Sami Zayn and Randy Orton is planned, with the winner getting a spot on the five-on-five Survivor Series team.
  • That happened and Orton won. (1/1)
  • Same thing with Dolph Ziggler and Bobby Roode, with Insider saying that may be a best two-out-of-three falls affair.
  • This match happened, and Roode won. However it happened the following week. (0/1)

October 25, 2017

  • According to Dave Meltzer, WWE is planning on adding a special guest referee to the Brock Lesnar vs. Jinder Mahal match at Survivor Series.
  • That match didn’t even happen and the match that did happen didn’t have a special guest referee. (0/1)
  • John Cena is the subject of the most speculation to get that ref spot, though WWE apparently has yet to settle on that choice.
  • He was on the SmackDown Survivor Series team. He was a nonfactor.
  • Although there was mention of the possibility of it on television, no titles are expected to change hands before Survivor Series, so all the announced matches should go forth as currently planned.
  • As we learned above with all the incorrect rumors, three of them did. Charlotte defeated Natalya for the SmackDown women’s title, the Bar defeated Ambrose and Rollins for the Raw tag team championshipss, and in the biggest one, AJ Styles defeated Jinder Mahal to win the WWE title. (0/1)

October 26, 2017

  • Raw likely won’t retaliate for SmackDown’s invasion until the Survivor Series go home show on Nov. 14 in Charlotte.
  • This is accurate. They took their time with it. (1/1)
  • According to SI.com, there is no heat on Kevin Owens for leaving SmackDown’s South American tour to deal with a family emergency last week.
  • It wasn’t much time in the future that he and Sami Zayn were reportedly sent home from a European tour for reasons that we never learned.
  • The rumored Miz and Maryse reality show is being discussed under the working title “The It Couple” and would likely feature friends of Miz Dolph Ziggler and musician Ryan Cabrera as regulars, says PWInsider.
  • It’s actually called Miz and Mrs. but it’s not out yet so we don’t know who’s going to be on it.
  • Aiden English and Rusev are expected to start working as an official tag team, per Wrestling Observer.
  • That’s true. I’m surprised they never won the titles given they’re so over. I get it because of the feuds the New Day and Usos had and eventually getting to the Bludgeon Brothers. But it’s still a shame. (1/1)
  • WWE has filed for a trademark for “Immune to Fear”. It may be for Jeff Hardy’s return, as he used that phrase during his 2009 run.
  • I don’t see any Jeff Hardy single’s gear at all. I see Hardy Boyz and I see Broken stuff. But I don’t see Jeff single’s. That’ll change real soon I’m sure. (0/1)

October 27, 2017

  • The Four Horsewomen of WWE vs. Four Horsewomen of MMA match is still planned but now it’s looking like it will happen at WrestleMania 34, per the Observer.
  • That was the WrestleMania that just happened and the mach didn’t take place. Rousey had her first match there, a mixed tag with Kurt Angle against Stephanie and Triple H. Charlotte defeated the undefeated Asuka. Becky Lynch, Sasha Banks, and Bayley were on the Women’s kickoff battle royal. Shayna Baszler won the NXT women’s title the night before. (0/1)
  • If he’s healthy in time for it, Roman Reigns is likely going to be a late addition to the Raw Survivor Series men’s team.
  • He was healthy in time, but they worked him with the Shield against the New Day instead. (0/1)
  • There’s some speculation that WWE may have soured on the idea of doing Brock Lesnar vs. Finn Balor, which could explain the latter’s booking recently.
  • True story. That match never happened. (1/1)
  • The Observer notes Kurt Angle was already planned for a big program at WrestleMania before being penciled in for the spot at TLC.
  • I wonder if they had the Rousey thing in mind six months ago or if the deal wasn’t even in place at that time. Then there’s the bit where they considered Batista for this role. Even if the Rousey thing wasn’t the plan, they set up possible single’s matches against Triple H or Shane McMahon at Survivor Series.
  • Nia Jax is expected back next week, according to the Observer.
  • Jax returned and defeated Bayley. Then she was added to the Raw Survivor Series team.

October 28, 2017

  • According to PW Insider, WWE is planning on running a major show for the Jan. 22 episode of Monday Night Raw at the Barclays Center because it’s the 25th anniversary.
  • They ran a show at Barclays and Manhattan Center. It was billed as a huge deal and there were some big moments, but for my money, I’d rather just a really good regular show with some legends popping up here and there. (1/1)
  • The Observer notes all the recent Nia Jax stories are inaccurate and she simply “got a few weeks off because she wasn’t figured into a main program.”
  • So many rumors surrounding Jax’s absence.
  • Lucha Underground still has no deal but there’s hope of that changing soon.
  • They finally got their forth season.

This week: 18/32 – 56%

Overall: 2,100/3,837 – 54.7%

Have a great week, everyone!

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The Daily

Here’s your “Daily Open Thread” for April 29, 2018. Come chat about whatever you would like. Come back all day and night for discussion of all things pro wrestling and beyond, some of the former but much more of the latter. Basically, this is the spot to yak about anything related to anything other than pro wrestling.

Don’t forget to check out everything else we have going on here at Cageside today. Keep checking that front page for content throughout the day, but for now, scroll on down to the comments and talk about whatever your heart desires.

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Wrestling Hi no Kuni results: Suzuki vs. Naito

With Sakura Genesis firmly in our rear view mirror, we’re moving on to New Japan Pro Wrestling’s spring double shot spectacular, Wrestling Hi no Kuni and Wrestling Dontaku.

This year, we have three such shows on our plate, with Dontaku doubled up into a two-night affair later in the week. All three shows, naturally, will air live and in full on NJPW World, so why not watch along with the best pro wrestling community on the internet?

Today’s action takes place in Kumamoto’s Kumamoto Grand Mess, kicking off at a brisk 2AM Eastern / 11PM Pacific, and is headlined by a series of matches between Los Ingobernables de Japon and Suzuki-gun, crowned by Minoru Suzuki defending the IWGP Intercontinental Championship against Tetsuya Naito.

Ren Narita & Yuji Nagata vs. Shota Umino & Tomoyuki Oka

Chaos (“Switchblade” Jay White, Rocky Romero, SHO, & YOH) vs. David Finlay, Jushin Liger, Ryusuke Taguchi, & Tiger Mask IV

Chaos (Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano) vs. Toa Henare & Togi Makabe

Bullet Club (Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi) & Golden Lovers (Kenny Omega & Kota Ibushi) vs. Suzuki-gun (Taichi, TAKA Michinoku, Takashi Iizuka, & Zack Sabre, Jr.)

Chaos (Hirooki Goto, Kazuchika Okada, Will Ospreay, & YOSHI-HASHI) vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi, Juice Robinson, KUSHIDA, & Michael Elgin

BUSHI vs. El Desperado

Hiromu Takahashi vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru

Killer Elite Squad (Davey Boy Smith, Jr. & Lance Archer) vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (EVIL & SANADA) (c) (IWGP Tag Team Championship)

Minoru Suzuki (c) vs. Tetsuya Naito (IWGP Intercontinental Championship)

Enjoy the show!

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Backlash match card & rumors

The next pay-per-view (PPV) on the WWE schedule is the Backlash show set to take place on Sun., May 6, 2018, at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. This will be the first of the co-branded events the company will run each month going forward.

We’re now just one week out from showtime and this is how the card looks right now:

  • Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe

Now that Reigns has lost his latest bid to become Universal champion, this is simply a Raw wrestler against a SmackDown wrestler, booked before this year’s Superstar Shakeup.

  • AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura (WWE championship)

They went to a double count out at Greatest Royal Rumble, setting up the third match in the series.

  • Seth Rollins vs. The Miz (Intercontinental championship)

Although he was moved over to SmackDown in the Superstar Shakeup, Miz is still getting his rematch for the Intercontinental title.

  • Carmella vs. Charlotte Flair (SmackDown women’s championship)

Charlotte gets a rematch for the title she lost when Carmella cashed in her Money in the Bank contract.

  • Nia Jax vs. Alexa Bliss (Raw women’s championship)

Bliss gets a rematch for the title she lost at WrestleMania 34.

  • Daniel Bryan vs. Big Cass

When Cass showed up on SmackDown Live as part of the Superstar Shakeup, he immediately targeted Bryan.

That’s just six matches, with the U.S., Raw & SmackDown tag team titles, and the Cruiserweight championship all without a spot on the card right now. Expect that to change on television this week.

Like the card?

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Jeffrey Nero Hardy, Smarks knew you’d come!

Everybody who comes to Cageside Seats has an opinion about what’s going on in pro wrestling – The Smark’s Shoot Standings (S3) are where YOU let us know YOURS.

Cast a vote in the comments. Give us the four performers you think entertained or impressed the most in the last week, and feel free to talk about why. And/or vote for your top performer in our poll.

We also have the outcome of last week’s voting, the results of which make up our annual competition for Performer of the Year.

Remember, the Standings are for the previous week’s nationally televised and internet streaming pro wrestling shows – Impact’s Redemption pay-per-view (PPV), the April 23 episode of Monday Night Raw, Tuesday’s SmackDown & 205 Live, NXT & ROH TV from Wednesday, Thursday’s Impact Wrestling, WWE’s Greatest Royal Rumble PPV and any other internet streaming wrestling that aired from April 22 – 28, 2018.

Make YOUR mark, smarks!

Appropriate week for a guy who can go with the flow to win…


  • A definitive victory for the latest Grand Slam champ, and free to pursue bigger singles glory now that he’s been shaken away from his brother. But another guy who talked smack on Monday then moved to Tuesday was the only person who was close.
  • Two former NXT talents made an impression by showing up on Raw during the Shakeup. One even used her famous finisher to help a veteran sell he way into the top ten.
  • Unlike the Saudi Sports Authority, The S3’s seventh season continues to be very welcoming to women. Ladies took up almost half our spots last week (and would have if not for all the ties), including the new SmackDown Champ’s party, the Lasskicker’s proper meal timing and The Boss… not losing to her frenemy and being The Boss.
  • Speaking of frenemies, Kevin Owens’ continues to be so good you can’t believe he ever worked under a mask (and he totally did… don’t @ me).
  • You all speak English well enough to appreciate a good low blow.
  • And even Smarks appreciate a hoss fight enough to throw half a point the winner (especially if it happens on the Developmental brand).

The S3: 2018 – 19, Week

1. Jeff Hardy
2. Samoa Joe
3. Drew McIntyre
4. Shinsuke Nakamura
5. Sami Zayn
6. (tie) Carmella
6. (tie) Ember Moon
8. (tie) Mickie James
8. (tie) Sasha Banks
10. (tie) Becky Lynch
10. (tie) Lars Sullivan

Points in our weekly Standings determine our annual list – full details on rules and scoring HERE.

Where The Bulgarian Brute’s late season surge continues…

The S3 Performer of the Year – through the Week Ending April 21

1. Shinsuke Nakamura – 16
2. Carmella – 14.5
3. Samoa Joe – 12
4. Jeff Hardy – 10
5. (tie) Billie Kay – 8
5. (tie) Drew McIntyre – 8
7. Peyton Royce – 7
8. Ember Moon – 6.5
9. (tie) Paige – 6
9. (tie) Sami Zayn – 6


Well, that was certainly not a dull week! Consider the action from Raw, Smackdown, NXT, Impact (especially its PPV), the independent scene, Greatest Royal Rumble – and don’t forget to check Kyle Decker’s essential Weekly Viewing Guide if you’re worried you’re forgeting something.

Then vote! We’ll take care of the rest.

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WWE has made it clear: Braun Strowman, not Roman Reigns, is the guy

WWE has been telling us with how the two have been booked on pay-per-view so far in 2018:

Royal Rumble

In a triple threat match for the Universal championship, Brock Lesnar pins Kane while an enraged Braun Strowman screams “you didn’t beat me” at him. There was a point in said match where Kane made a save on a Strowman pinfall.

Reigns was the last man eliminated by the winner of the Royal Rumble match, Shinsuke Nakamura

Elimination Chamber

In a 7-man Elimination Chamber match that included both men, Strowman eliminated literally everyone in the match before Reigns pinned him following three Superman punches and two spears. Immediately after, Strowman left him Reigns in a heap after two powerslams and spearing him through one of the Chamber pods.

WrestleMania 34

Strowman won the Raw tag team titles after picking a 10-year-old kid from the crowd to be his teammate, defeating Cesaro & Sheamus by himself.

Reigns kicked out of five F-5’s from Brock Lesnar but was pinned after taking a sixth.

Greatest Royal Rumble

Strowman broke the record for most eliminations in a Royal Rumble match with 13, winning the first ever 50-man Greatest Royal Rumble.

Reigns lost to Lesnar again, after Brock kicked out of three Superman punches and four spears, but WWE is calling it controversial because Roman speared Brock outside the cage and they’re disputing who touched both feet on the floor first.


Yes, there’s a lot more to it than what we see on television but maybe there shouldn’t be. After all, Strowman is widely cheered by every section of the audience. He has genuinely gotten over as a monster babyface. He’s incredibly fun to watch. Reigns, meanwhile, for all his talent and all the great matches he’s put on with damn near every wrestler on the roster, just isn’t catching on with a very vocal segment of the audience.

At some point, pushing back his big crowning victory by repeatedly having him lose, whether it’s pushed as controversial or not — just makes him exactly what Samoa Joe called him earlier this month: a failure.

You know who isn’t, based on WWE’s booking of him?

You got it.

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Biggest Royal Rumble surprises: WWE Top 10

You just knew Hornswoggle’s appearance at Greatest Royal Rumble would make the list, but the rest are fun.


Past “Top Ten”/”Greatest ____” lists from WWE:

Greatest Crowd Reactions (Part one)
Greatest Crowd Reactions (Part two)
Greatest babyface turns
Greatest heel turns
Famous Firings
Funniest falls
Mic botches
Shocking returns
Most memorable debuts
Greatest slaps
Most surprising championship changes
Dramatic Royal Rumble endings
Funniest moments
Greatest insults
Biggest breakups
Fastest title changes
Ridiculous reversals
Finisher combinations
Defining TakeOver moments
Craziest kickouts
Most creative fan chants
Broken rings
Shane McMahon’s Insanity
Undertaker’s chokeslams
Chris Jericho attacks
WrestleMania’s Forgotten Celebs
Stars Kicked Out of Factions
Most Extreme WrestleMania Moments
Ringside Invasions
Outside-the-ring finishers
McMahon Family Showdowns
Anti-Superstar conspiracies
Tag Team Formations
Extreme Rules moments
Cold-blooded Superstar betrayals
Incredible Superstar reunions
Best catchphrases of the last decade
Moves that have beaten John Cena
Before they were famous
Best impersonations
Draft Day shockers
Strangest Battlegrounds
RKOs OUT OF NOWHERE
Impactful Raw debuts
Superstar pick-up lines
Superstar Weddings Gone Wrong
Extreme SummerSlam moments
Backstage meltdowns
John Cena World title wins
Career-threatening match moments
Rapid-fire finishing moves
Controversial Finishes
Goldberg Spears
Hell-ish Hell in a Cell moments
Masters of the Superkick
Wildest Powerbombs
Sneakiest Superstar disguises
Manhandled Managers
Survivor Series debuts
Raw vs. SmackDown battles
Superstars smashed through ladders
Most Dominant Returns
Superstars Getting Crushed on Cars
Announce table crash landings
Big Men Destroying Underdogs
Guest referees wrecking Superstars
Mirrored double-team maneuvers
Tests of strength
Finishing moves on the stage
Fastest eliminations in Royal Rumble history
Best Elimination Chamber matches
Announcer beatdowns
OMG Elimination Chamber moments
Superstars playing with fire
Brock Lesnar’s most shocking F5s
Backstage assaults
Superstars getting fired
Hardy Boyz ladder attacks
Hostile crowd reactions
Ring breakers
John Cena’s best verbal smackdowns
Guest referees getting wrecked
Great Shield moments
Incredible Royal Rumble match saves
Crazy Elimination Chamber jumps
Funniest WrestleMania moments
WrestleMania returns
WrestleMania endings

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: Undertaker vs. Rusev

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The next match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is Undertaker versus Rusev.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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Beyond Welcome Home Night One results: Blanchard vs. Lee

Beyond Wrestling returns to Powerbomb.tv today at 7:30PM Eastern with Welcome Home Night One in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. So sign up (with a ten-day free trial, twenty days with promo code BEYOND, or a whopping thirty days with promo code MARATHON) or log in, have a sit-down, and chat about it with the finest pro wrestling community on the internet while you watch, whether that’s on your computer or through the brand new Roku app that Powerbomb have released for public beta testing.

Cam Zagami vs. Jordynne Grace

John Silver vs. Rory Gulak

Josh Briggs vs. Matt Riddle

Jaka vs. Maxwell Jacob Friedman

Hot Wheelz (“Hot Sauce” Tracy Williams & Wheeler YUTA) vs. Janelope (Joey Janela & Penelope Ford)

Jonathan Gresham vs. Puma King

Icarus & the Throwbacks (Dasher Hatfield & “Mr. Touchdown” Mark Angelosetti) vs. LAX (Angel Ortiz, Homicide, & Mike Draztik)

Kimber Lee vs. Tessa Blanchard

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Bill Goldberg calls Hall of Fame induction ceremony bittersweet

During an interview with the Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling, Bill Goldberg was asked if his Hall of Fame induction was the pinnacle of his career. He responded by airing out some grievances with the ceremony in New Orleans, and the way it all played out.

And he makes some really good points:

“Yes and no. It’s bitter sweet. I’ll start with the yes in that I was extremely and will always be forever honored to the people who chose me to be a member of the Hall of Fame period end of story. The people that I rubbed shoulders with in that hall I don’t deserve to be there by any stretch but did I enjoy being last when half the people left because of a six hour ceremony when people go on and on and on and unfairly try to encapsulate their five to thirty five to forty years in the business? It was an unfair and unceremoniously strange send off because it is just tough. You try to be professional in consideration for others and I’m not saying that the others were inconsiderate because they deserve their time and you deserve to sit out there and talk for an hour and make people understand how appreciative you are of the accolade and induction and the stories that encapsulate your career. It’s an injustice for people to not hear those things. But at the same time it makes for an extremely excruciating experience (laughing) sitting out in that crowd. Even more excruciating for someone that has to follow them and capture their career in a short period of time which is what I tried to do and hell, I forgot about Sting and he was sitting in the front row thank God and I forgot about a million people because I didn’t have time. I gave my suggestions to Mr. McMahon afterwards and than you carry on to the next night and you carry onto ‘Mania where you are introduced and I was out of there like a hot potato because as long as I am physically able and as I’ve said have the ability to do the things that I used to do, I’m not saying I want to be out there doing it but its tough being around. It is like being in pads and sitting on the side lines waiting for the coach to put you in but you can’t because you are ineligible. It’s just that I am a competitive person and it is tough to sit back and watch people do it whether it is wrestling or anything else. That transition that is kind of forcefully retire when you get this Hall of Fame induction I am just kind of uncomfortable with that whole situation. I am still walking tall.”

It’s hard to argue with any of his points here. The Hall of Fame ceremony has almost become a parody of itself. It ran so long this year it won’t be included in the WrestleMania 34 DVD release. Goldberg’s, the headlining attraction, ended up giving a speech to far fewer folks than the very first induction.

That doesn’t seem right.

He’s also correct that it’s a difficult situation because you don’t want to tell anyone being inducted they can’t take their time with their speech. WWE should try to find a middle ground, however, so that everyone gets a fair amount of time without taking away from everyone else.

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Saudi General Sports Authority releases apology for ‘indecent scene involving women’ at Greatest Royal Rumble

Women were not allowed to wrestle at the WWE Greatest Royal Rumble event in Saudi Arabia due to cultural differences, though Triple H has openly said they hope that changes in the next few years. Well, if you wondered how deep the differences run, the Saudi General Sports Authority has issued an apology for what it called an “indecent scene involving women” when an advertisement was played in the stadium in Jeddah during the show.

Here’s the apology roughly translated by a Reddit user:

“The General Sport Authority would like to apologize to the viewers and attendees of last night’s WWE event that took place in Jeddah, over the indecent scene involving women that appeared as an ad before a segment. It would like to confirm it’s total disapproval of this, in the shadow of its commitment to eliminate anything that goes against the communities values.

”The authority has made sure to ban showing of any segment that involves women wrestling or any scenes related to it, and stipulated that to the company (WWE). The authority also disapproved any promotional stuff with pictures or videos showing women in an indecent way, and emphasized on commitment of this rule. And it’s a commitment that the authority would still commit to forever in all of it’s events and programs.”

The ad in question was the commercial WWE has been running promoting co-branded pay-per-views:

This was the start of a 10 year partnership between WWE and the Saudi General Sports Authority.

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The waiting intervals were nowhere close to 90 seconds at the Greatest Royal Rumble

WWE stated that there would be 90-second waiting intervals between each entrant in the Greatest Royal Rumble match. How well did WWE stick to that claim? Here are the waiting times between all 48 buzzers, in chronological order:

  • 1m 31s: Buzzer 1 – Sin Cara
  • 1m 51s: Buzzer 2 – Curtis Axel
  • 1m 20s: Buzzer 3 – Mark Henry
  • 1m 27s: Buzzer 4 – Mike Kanellis
  • 1m 19s: Buzzer 5 – Hiroki Sumi
  • 1m 50s: Buzzer 6 – Viktor
  • 1m 18s: Buzzer 7 – Kofi Kingston
  • 1m 15s: Buzzer 8 – Tony Nese
  • 1m 09s: Buzzer 9 – Dash Wilder
  • 1m 13s: Buzzer 10 – Hornswoggle
  • 1m 48s: Buzzer 11 – Primo
  • 1m 14s: Buzzer 12 – Xavier Woods
  • 2m 22s: Buzzer 13 – Bo Dallas
  • 1m 10s: Buzzer 14 – Kurt Angle
  • 1m 36s: Buzzer 15 – Scott Dawson
  • 1m 09s: Buzzer 16 – Goldust
  • 1m 12s: Buzzer 17 – Konnor
  • 1m 19s: Buzzer 18 – Elias
  • 1m 47s: Buzzer 19 – Luke Gallows
  • 1m 33s: Buzzer 20 – Rhyno
  • 1m 08s: Buzzer 21 – Drew Gulak
  • 1m 14s: Buzzer 22 – Tucker Knight
  • 1m 11s: Buzzer 23 – Bobby Roode
  • 1m 38s: Buzzer 24 – Fandango
  • 1m 06s: Buzzer 25 – Chad Gable
  • 1m 03s: Buzzer 26 – Rey Mysterio
  • 1m 30s: Buzzer 27 – Mojo Rawley
  • 1m 17s: Buzzer 28 – Tyler Breeze
  • 1m 28s: Buzzer 29 – Big E
  • 1m 34s: Buzzer 30 – Karl Anderson
  • 1m 13s: Buzzer 31 – Apollo Crews
  • 1m 21s: Buzzer 32 – Roderick Strong
  • 1m 15s: Buzzer 33 – Randy Orton
  • 1m 26s: Buzzer 34 – Heath Slater
  • 1m 13s: Buzzer 35 – Babatunde
  • 1m 04s: Buzzer 36 – Baron Corbin
  • 1m 37s: Buzzer 37 – Titus O’Neil
  • 1m 16s: Buzzer 38 – Dan Matha
  • 1m 22s: Buzzer 39 – Braun Strowman
  • 1m 47s: Buzzer 40 – Tye Dillinger
  • 2m 04s: Buzzer 41 – Curt Hawkins
  • 1m 58s: Buzzer 42 – Bobby Lashley
  • 2m 09s: Buzzer 43 – Great Khali
  • 2m 07s: Buzzer 44 – Kevin Owens
  • 1m 18s: Buzzer 45 – Shane McMahon
  • 2m 10s: Buzzer 46 – Shelton Benjamin
  • 1m 33s: Buzzer 47 – Big Cass
  • 1m 44s: Buzzer 48 – Chris Jericho

Only eight of the 48 waiting periods fell within five seconds of the 90-second goal.

The average waiting period was 1m 29s and the median time was between 1m 21s and 1m 22s. This was a match where the average waiting period happened to fall in the right range, but very few individual waiting periods actually landed in that neighborhood.

14 of the waiting periods lasted 74 seconds or less, which means they fell closer to 60 seconds than 90 seconds.

The waiting periods preceding Buzzers 7 through 10 (this included the entries of Viktor, Kingston, Nese, Wilder) each lasted between 1m 09s and 1m 18s.

Only one of the waiting periods that preceded Buzzers 21 through 26 (this included the entries of Rhyno, Gulak, Knight, Roode, Fandango, and Gable) landed above the range of 1m 03s to 1m 14s. Bobby Roode was the only entry into the match during that span who was given extra time to work with (1m 38s) before the next entry arrived.

The waiting period that captured Babatunde’s entry into the match only lasted 1m 04s.

Five different waiting periods lasted 2m 00s or longer. Six additional waiting periods lasted longer than 1m 45s, which means they were closer to two minutes than 90 seconds.

The waiting periods that included the entrances of Sumi (1m 50s), Hornswoggle (1m 48s), Angle (1m 36s), and Elias (1m 47s) lasted longer than most, presumably so there would be enough time for these guys to get their spots in (or in the case of Elias, his extra slow walk down to the ring while talking to the audience).

The longest waiting period of the night lasted 2m 22s, which began when Xavier Woods made his entrance. They did the Kofi escape spot, and the New Day then danced with Tony Nese.

The other waiting periods in excess of two minutes all occurred during entrant numbers in the 40’s.

This included a 2m 04s waiting period where Braun had to clear the ring before Curt Hawkins made his appearance. The following waiting period, where Braun chased Hawkins down and tossed him out, lasted 1m 58s. This was immediately followed by a 2m 09s period where Lashley joined the match and took out Elias, and also saw Bryan lay in some corner dropkicks to both Lashley and Strowman. That was followed up with the Great Khali and his near minute-long walk to the ring, so that period lasted 2m 07s.

A little bit later Shane McMahon joined the match. That waiting period lasted 2m 10s, and it featured Shane’s putrid offense as well as Kevin Owens being victimized by double team Yes Kicks.

In a perfectly timed match, the final buzzer (signaling Jericho’s entrance) would have gone off 72m 00s after the start of the match. In reality, this buzzer went off at 71m 09s. So all the madness essentially evened out thanks to some extra long waiting periods at the end of the match, starting with Buzzer 40.

Overall, WWE did a terrible job with sticking to the 90-second rule. However, one might argue that it makes sense to shorten time for the lower card guys while extending it for the bigger stars, so WWE handled it well.

What do you think, Cagesiders?

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WWE Stock Report: Becky Lynch can’t win

Some places do power rankings. Here at Cageside, we do a stock report.

In this weekly series from our video dream team of Cain A. Knight and Stephanie Hatala, we’ve got three Superstars (or teams of Superstars) who are on their way up, and three that are moving in the opposite direction. And after a Raw and SmackDown where WWE was building to not one, but two, pay-per-view (PPV) events, a lot of fortunes changed.

Check it out and see if you agree with their picks:

Stock Down

3. Becky Lynch
2. No Way Jose
1. Bobby Roode

Stock Up

3. Chad Gable
2. Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre
1. Big Cass

And if you enjoy this video, remember to like our Facebook page and subscribe to our YouTube channel, where Cain and Stephanie are producing great stuff like this all the time!

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The next match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is AJ Styles versus Shinsuke Nakamura.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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Batista confirms WWE ghosted on him, talks one last chance for a return

A somewhat odd story made the rounds earlier this month. Well, it was odd in that WWE doesn’t usually not work with movie stars who want to work with them. But maybe not that odd when you look at their strained relationship with Avengers: Infinity War’s Dave Bautista.

Reports said the company started talking to the former WWE Champ about coming back for WrestleMania 34, possibly as a partner for Ronda Rousey. While it didn’t have the “Olympic Dream Team” angle presented by Rousey’s eventual partner, Kurt Angle, it made some storyline sense – the Batista character has a ton of history with the team Ronda’s feuding with, Triple H and Stephanie McMahon. But whoever had been in contact with Bautista allegedly just… stopped calling him. He was said to have found out they’d gone in another direction when the rest of us did.

Some doubted the story, but in a visit with Chad Dukes on 105.7 The Fan in his hometown of Washington, D.C., The Animal relayed his version. And it lines up:

“This is all insider stuff, and I usually don’t share. I’m really an old-school kayfabe guy. But they reached out to me earlier this year to possibly come back and do that thing with Ronda. And I said that I would be willing to do it only if we teased something for me and Hunter to go to ‘Mania next year. And they said, ‘Yeah, that would be great. I love that idea.’

And I said, ‘Well, that’s great. I’ll come back a few times during the year, and we’ll tease it, and we’ll work it and we’ll milk it. And we’ll go to ‘Mania, me and Hunter, next year.’ Oh, I love that idea. Let’s do it! And so we literally talked for about like three weeks and then they just stopped calling me.

I sent a text to Hunter. I was like, ‘Hey man, I don’t know if you put any more thought into what’s going on. I’m really excited about the possibilities.’ And I literally never heard back from them. They just stopped talking to me about it.

Man, I don’t know what else I can do to try to… I want to end my career the right way. I’m faithful and loyal to the WWE. I’m proud of being from there and I want to do good business with them, but they just don’t make it easy. You know, they just don’t.”

Now, I’m a Big Dave super-fan, but I just don’t get it. And neither does Bautista, who sounds pretty close to calling it a wrestling career – despite his love for the business:

“I told them next year would be my last year. I’m turning 50 next year. I’d be willing to… I feel great. Physically, I’m in great shape. I’ve never let up on that. But I just don’t want to be the old guy in the ring and I don’t want to overstay my welcome. I just want to end my career the right way and next year will be the last opportunity, so if we can’t make something happen by next year, then I’m just gonna officially hang it up.

I’m doing okay for myself, so I don’t need to be there. I just, I love it there. Even though the fans totally crapped on me the last time I was there, I would still go back in a heartbeat and love to entertain them, and I would have fun doing it, man. I’d be happy to be there. But, I just don’t get it, man. I don’t get that company. I just don’t understand.”

It seems like there has to be something more at play here, as even if the company doesn’t like how publicly critical Bautista’s been of them – on a few different issues – since his last run, Vince McMahon and team usually let bygones be bygones when there’s money to be made. And promoting Dave Bautista is good business right now. Ask Disney/Marvel, who loves having him front-and-center on Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy promotion, even though he’s not the top star of either film franchise.

Now, it seems like there will only be one more shot at a farewell tour for Batista. Will WWE get over whatever’s holding them back from making it happen?

As one of Dave’s co-stars might say, “I am groot”.

You can listen to more highlights of the interview with Dukes here.

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WWE is still having fun with Titus O’Neil’s Greatest Royal Rumble botch

WWE is still having fun with Titus O’Neil’s Greatest Royal Rumble botch

We noted on Friday night that Vince McMahon was laughing backstage when Titus O’Neil tripped and slid under the ring at the Greatest Royal Rumble. Well, it looks like the staff at WWE.com has decided to join in on the fun with an article that features Superstars roasting O’Neil for the botch. Here are some […]

The post WWE is still having fun with Titus O’Neil’s Greatest Royal Rumble botch appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Jinder Mahal reacts to his botched spot at the Greatest Royal Rumble

Jinder Mahal reacts to his botched spot at the Greatest Royal Rumble

The funniest, and perhaps biggest moment at the Greatest Royal Rumble show was Titus O’Neil’s slip and fall under the ring as he entered into the 50-Man Rumble. O’Neil’s blunder has overshadowed another botch that took place on the show. If you watched the Jinder Mahal vs. Jeff Hardy match then you probably noticed the […]

The post Jinder Mahal reacts to his botched spot at the Greatest Royal Rumble appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Championship match announced for WWE Backlash

Championship match announced for WWE Backlash

Following the double count-out finish at the Greatest Royal Rumble show during the WWE Championship match, WWE has announced that another rematch will take place at Backlash. AJ Styles will defend the WWE Championship again against Shinsuke Nakamura. It was clear that a non-finish was needed on Friday because there were already plans for this […]

The post Championship match announced for WWE Backlash appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Balor statement on rainbow gear, support for LGBTQ despite not wearing it in Saudi Arabia

When Finn Balor wrestled for the Intercontinental championship at the Greatest Royal Rumble event in Saudi Arabia, he did so in plain black gear. After his big display at WrestleMania 34, where he wore rainbow gear and had an entrance that included a large group of members of the LGBTQ community, there seemed to be an expectation he would do something similar, or at least WWE’s decision to go into Jeddah for a major event while Balor was promoting such a thing would lead to criticism.

Sure enough, there were plenty of messages like this floating around:

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For his part, Balor had this to say:

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

That would seem to be just about the best statement he could make on this situation. The criticism isn’t so much about Balor individually but rather WWE as a company choosing to go about this event the way they did. Finn just got caught up in the crossfire.

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and emphasized on commitment of this rule. And it’s a commitment that the authority would still commit to forever in all of it’s events and p · and stipulated that to the company (WWE). The authority also disapproved any promotional stuff with pictures or videos showing women in an in · Female WWE wrestlers were shown during an advertisement that aired in the arena during Greatest Royal Rumble and now the Saudi General Sports · in the shadow of its commitment to eliminate anything that goes against the communities values. The authority has made sure to ban showing o · over the indecent scene involving women that appeared as an ad before a segment. It would like to confirm it’s total disapproval of this · the apology reads: The General Sport Authority would like to apologize to the viewers and attendees of last night’s WWE event that took plac · we’re told the indecency being described is particularly related to the way the women were dressed in the advertisement for dual branded pay-

Saudi General Sports Authority Releases Apology For Showing Women During Greatest Royal Rumble

Female WWE wrestlers were shown during an advertisement that aired in the arena during Greatest Royal Rumble and now the Saudi General Sports Authority is apologizing for the mistake.

According to a rough translation via Reddit, the apology reads:

The General Sport Authority would like to apologize to the viewers and attendees of last night’s WWE event that took place in Jeddah, over the indecent scene involving women that appeared as an ad before a segment. It would like to confirm it’s total disapproval of this, in the shadow of its commitment to eliminate anything that goes against the communities values.

The authority has made sure to ban showing of any segment that involves women wrestling or any scenes related to it, and stipulated that to the company (WWE). The authority also disapproved any promotional stuff with pictures or videos showing women in an indecent way, and emphasized on commitment of this rule. And it’s a commitment that the authority would still commit to forever in all of it’s events and programs.

According to people familiar with the culture, we’re told the indecency being described is particularly related to the way the women were dressed in the advertisement for dual branded pay-per-views — which was played during the prayer break — and their lack of covering.

The advertisement in question can be seen below.

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WATCH: Crowd in Saudi Arabia reacts to seeing Carmella (a woman) on the big screen during Greatest Royal Rumble

WATCH: Crowd in Saudi Arabia reacts to seeing Carmella (a woman) on the big screen during Greatest Royal Rumble

As noted earlier, the Saudi Arabia General Sports Authority issued an apology because “indecent scenes” were shown during the show. BBC.com is reporting that state television cut off their broadcast of the show when promotional footage, featuring some of the female roster, aired. However, the footage still aired on the big screen in the stadium and […]

The post WATCH: Crowd in Saudi Arabia reacts to seeing Carmella (a woman) on the big screen during Greatest Royal Rumble appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Braun broke Reigns’ record at Greatest Royal Rumble

The Big Dog’s trip to Saudi Arabia was not a success. Roman Reigns not only came up short again in his quest to defeat Brock Lesnar for the Universal Title – albeit in CONTROVERSIAL fashion, he also lost a place in the record books.

WWE confirmed as much in a post on their website. Braun Strowman eliminated 13 men en route to winning the first ever Greatest Royal Rumble match in Jeddah on April 27, breaking Reigns’ record of 12 from the 2014 regular Royal Rumble.

There’s an obvious caveat here, as Roman’s total was set in a 30 man match, while Strowman had 20 additional wrestlers in the version where he broke the record. But while we can put an asterisk next to Braun’s name for this one, it’s still another company talking point which will no longer be associated with Reigns.

That is comes at a time when many are wondering if Vince McMahon has finally abandoned his push to make Roman “The Guy” is curious.

Discuss amongst yourself, and stay tuned.

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PHOTO: Karen Jarrett and Braun Strowman have put last year’s bar incident behind them

PHOTO: Karen Jarrett and Braun Strowman have put last year’s bar incident behind them

The old saying in pro wrestling is that time heals all wounds. Many of you remember the story of Karen Jarrett browbeating Braun Strowman in Tennesse last year. The story, as first reported by the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, was that a bunch of wrestlers were at Jeff Hardy’s CD release party last July in Nashville. […]

The post PHOTO: Karen Jarrett and Braun Strowman have put last year’s bar incident behind them appeared first on Wrestling News.

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No one can stop laughing about Titus’ fall, but he’s owning it (kind of)

Are you still chuckling when you think about Titus O’Neil’s already legendary entrance into the Greatest Royal Rumble match from April 27 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia?

Well, you’re far from alone. In the least surprising news ever (and something we all could have guessed based on how quickly and often it was replayed on the WWE Network and pay-per-view (PPV) broadcast), Vince McMahon reportedly thought it was so funny he was crying in the production area.

And Titus’ meme-ification is happening all over, including in the virtual wrestling locker room on Twitter…

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And the inevitable…

To his credit, Titus is taking it on the chin. Sure, he’s trying to make it sound like he planned it, but he knows we aren’t buying it. And if he can use it to get us to buy some merch?

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

That’s what this business is all about!

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Finn Balor comments on not wearing rainbow gear at Greatest Royal Rumble

Finn Balor comments on not wearing rainbow gear at Greatest Royal Rumble

Finn Balor is and always will be a supporter of LGBTQ rights and Saudi Arabia had nothing to do with him not wearing his rainbow gear at the Greatest Royal Rumble. Balor noted that he hasn’t worn that gear since WrestleMania but his support continues. He wrote: “My Rainbow Gear was a statement at Wrestlemania […]

The post Finn Balor comments on not wearing rainbow gear at Greatest Royal Rumble appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Saudi Arabia’s General Sports Authority issues apology because WWE showed ads with women during Greatest Royal Rumble

Saudi Arabia’s General Sport Authority issues apology because WWE showed ads with women during Greatest Royal Rumble

Saudi Arabia’s General Sport Authority has issued an apology via social media because there were women featured in ads that aired on the big screens in the stadium during the Greatest Royal Rumble. Apparently, the issue was with the ad with the wrestlers signing about the dual-brand shows and an ad for Backlash aired in […]

The post Saudi Arabia’s General Sports Authority issues apology because WWE showed ads with women during Greatest Royal Rumble appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Update on Aiden English after taking The Undertaker’s Tombstone at Greatest Royal Rumble

Update on Aiden English after taking The Undertaker’s Tombstone at Greatest Royal Rumble

We noted on Friday that there were unconfirmed reports on social media saying that Aiden English was helped to the backstage area after taking the Tombstone from The Undertaker. PWInsider reports that English is fine. He did such a great job selling that it convinced fans in attendance that he was legitimately hurt after his […]

The post Update on Aiden English after taking The Undertaker’s Tombstone at Greatest Royal Rumble appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The next match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is Brock Lesnar versus Roman Reigns.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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Impact spoilers: Title change, more Slammiversary build

Impact Wrestling finished building out from their Redemption pay-per-view (PPV), and toward July’s Slammiversary, with a fourth night of their second taping under the direction of Don Callis and Scott D’Amore. How did they wrap a week with mostly positive buzz on Thursday night at Universal Studios?

That’s what we’re here to tell you, Cagesiders. You can see what happened earlier in the week at these links for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday’s tapings.

These results are compiled from a variety of live reports – including Twitter’s Sir Owen Disney – which are subject to a couple levels of interpretation, and final production of the material for airing on television usually changes context, so…

Take these with a grain of salt, is all I’m saying. Still the big matches, winners/losers and story beats are here.

Filmed April 26:

Grado (w/ Katarina Leigh) def. Caleb Konley (w/ Trevor Lee) (Xplosion)

El Hijo del Fantasma def. Jake Crist (w/ Dave Crist); Fantasma fought off the oVe numbers game in the aftermath, but was taken down when Sami Callihan and his baseball bat ran in. They began to unmask him, but the lights went down and when they came back up, Pentagon, Jr. was there to run the trio off and get into a staredown with Callihan before celebrating with his fellow luchador.

– Eddie Edwards vs. Grado (again w/ Leigh) never starts after Eddie attacks Grado with a kendo stick and threatens Katarina if she doesn’t leave. Edwards cuts a promo about having bloodied and broken Sami Callihan, but Sami ruined it. Callihan has people fooled and Eddie wants to expose him as a fraud. He calls out Tommy Dreamer, telling him to get his “fat ass” out there. Dreamer tried to calm down Edwards, calls him a hypocrite and tells Eddie to move on. He says Edwards hasn’t talked to his wife in a week, and Eddie wants to know how Tommy knows that. They get into a shoving match and Edwards makes to leave after getting pushed down, but comes back to cane Dreamer before leaving.

LAX (w/ Eddie Kingston) def. Z & E (DJZ and Andrew Everett) to become new Impact Tag Team Champions. Ortiz and Santana celebrate in the crowd afterwards.

– Promo segment with KM where he talks about having tried to take Fallah Bahh under his wing, and how he’s bigger than Impact – claiming they should change the name of the show to “KMpact Wrestling”. Bahh comes out and hand him a note before saying “bye bye”. KM read the note, written in Bahh-speak, which leads him to think he’s about to face Richard Justice. Instead, he gets the Big Bad Booty Daddy.

Scott Steiner def. KM with Steiner Recliner

Madison Rayne def. Taya Valkyrie; afterwards Madison gets on the mic to say she hadn’t planned on returning to Impact as a wrestler, but circumstances changed and now that she’s picked up some big wins, she’s asked management for another big moment to share with her daughter. At Slammiversary, she’ll face Su Yung for the Knockouts Title. The Undead Bride’s laughter fills the Impact Zone, but she’s nowhere to be seen.

Matt Sydal def. Brian Cage via countout to retain the X-Division Title. Jimmy Jacobs and Kongo Kong came out, distracting Cage. The countout came when Kong threw Cage into the steel steps, which was somehow missed by the referee? Jacobs and Kong celebrated with Sydal afterwards, and appeared to be aligned as a new group.

Tessa Blanchard def. Kiera Hogan in a No DQ match following a facebuster onto a steel chair

Dezmond Xavier def. Petey Williams in a match which got good reviews from those in attendance

Pentagon Jr. and El Hijo del Fantasma def. OVE (w/ Sami Callihan); post-match, Callihan took both luchadors out with his bat. Penta recovered and was going to break Jake Crist’s arm before taking another bat shot. Sami threatened to unmask him, but was chased off along with his crew by a steel-chair swinging Fantasma.

Su Yung def. Diamante (w/ LAX); not sure if the Knockout Title was on the line. Crowd was excited to see the returning Diamante, who reportedly had a pretty bad botch but continued on to finish the match strong.

Katarina Leigh (w/ Grado) def. Alisha Edwards (Xplosion); Katarina sent Grado away before the match, but he still came back out and they celebrated together afterwards.

Eli Drake def. Fallah Bahh (Xplosion); they ran an angle afterwards where Drake taunted the crowd and Bahh with cheesecake, which ended up all over his face after Fallah beat him up. This was probably just to send the live crowd home happy.


H/T: Wrestling Inc.

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Paige biopic ‘Fighting With My Family’ pushed back to 2019

Around WrestleMania 34, WWE started playing a clip from the film Fighting With My Family. The scene was basically a promo from Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who in addition to playing himself in the story of current SmackDown General Manager Paige and her wrestling family, also has a producer credit via his Seven Bucks Productions. There was even speculation the recently retired Paige had been moved into her current role to help promote the movie ahead of its September 2018 release date.

Well, it seems that clip is all we’re going to get of Fighting With My Family for a while, as Deadline reports it’s been pushed back to March 1, 2019.

There haven’t been any reports of concerns about the picture from MGM, who purchased the distribution right for a hefty $17.5 million, WWE Studios or Johnson’s camp. But it’s hard to see this as a good sign. The reports says the reason for the move is to get away from a busy Sept. 14 weekend headlined by the latest movie in the Predator franchise. But in jumping to March, it will go head-to-head with a How To Train Your Dragon flick, which – while a different target demographic – doesn’t seem much less daunting.

Rumors fly around Hollywood as much as they do the wrestling web, so we’ll likely hear more on this soon. But we probably won’t being much more of Fighting With My Family this year.

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Not Your Demographic, Episode 127: Reclaiming my Owl

This week, Stunning Stella is joined by Right This Way Robbie because Enigma Erin is on her honeymoon!

Robbie introduces himself with a Tiger Beat questionnaire and then they jump right in with their Impact Redemption thoughts (spoiler: Stella was right), their feelings about, Greatest Royal Rumble, and a good ole’ fashioned FMK.

Listen:

Patreon: NotYourDemoPod
Twitter: @Stella_Cheeks, @ErnGenC
Tumblr: Not Your Demographic
iTunes: Please rate and review

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WWE Greatest Royal Rumble 2018 Results

Who made history by winning the biggest Royal Rumble Match in WWE history and becoming the first ever Greatest Royal Rumble Champion? How did the Steel Cage Match for the Universal Title end in controversy? Was AJ Styles able to get his revenge against Shinsuke Nakamura? Could Rusev defeat The Undertaker in a Casket Match? Who left The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as the new RAW Tag Team Champions? Who won the first one-on-one match between John Cena and Triple H in eight years?

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The Daily

Here’s your “Daily Open Thread” for April 28, 2018. Come chat about whatever you would like. Come back all day and night for discussion of all things pro wrestling and beyond, some of the former but much more of the latter. Basically, this is the spot to yak about anything related to anything other than pro wrestling.

Don’t forget to check out everything else we have going on here at Cageside today. Keep checking that front page for content throughout the day, but for now, scroll on down to the comments and talk about whatever your heart desires.

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although he didn’t outright say that: “My Rainbow Gear was a statement at Wrestlemania Weeekend Although the gear has not been worn since in · Cape Town x2 · change or laundry schedule. #dirtypants” According to a CNN report · Johannesburg · Pretoria · Saudi Arabia’s strict laws against homosexuality led many to believe it was the reason Finn Balor didn’t wear his rainbow-themed gear promoti · St.Louise Saudi Arabia) My support continues despite any color choice · the penalty for married men or non-Muslims who engage in same-sex conduct with Muslims is stoning to death. Finn’s “Balor Club For Everyone”

Finn Balor Issues Statement on Lack of Rainbow Gear at Greatest Royal Rumble

Saudi Arabia’s strict laws against homosexuality led many to believe it was the reason Finn Balor didn’t wear his rainbow-themed gear promoting inclusion at Greatest Royal Rumble … and now the wrestler has released a statement on the matter.

Balor tweeted after the show implying the change in trunks was a case of dirty laundry and not a mandate from above, although he didn’t outright say that:

“My Rainbow Gear was a statement at Wrestlemania Weeekend Although the gear has not been worn since in 6 appearances(Hartford CT, Cape Town x2,Pretoria, Johannesburg ,St.Louise Saudi Arabia) My support continues despite any color choice, change or laundry schedule. #dirtypants”

According to a CNN report, the penalty for married men or non-Muslims who engage in same-sex conduct with Muslims is stoning to death.

Finn’s “Balor Club For Everyone” shirt is still on sale and a portion of the proceeds goes to GLAAD.

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Rumor Roundup: Botched finish, Greatest Royal Rumble, Sami Zayn, Daniel Bryan, more!

Speculating on the rumors surrounding pro wrestling is a favored pastime of many fans, perhaps second only to actually watching the matches. In this daily column, we take a look at the latest rumors being churned out by the pro wrestling rumor mill.

Important reminder: Rumors are just that — rumors. None of this has been confirmed as legitimate news or fact, it’s just circulating around the pro wrestling rumor mill. We track rumor accuracy in a weekly feature called Rumor Look Back you can find here. Remember, take it all with a grain of salt.

Rumors for the Day:

  • For what it’s worth, Dave Meltzer seemed to think the finish to the Brock Lesnar-Roman Reigns match at Greatest Royal Rumble was botched. PW Insider, however, claims it was the planned finish all along.
  • Sami Zayn’s post-Raw interview on the WWE YouTube channel was supposed to be the storyline explanation for his missing this show, according to Dave Meltzer. However, they apparently wanted to keep it quiet and then released a statement on his missing the show that read “WWE is committed to embracing individuals from all backgrounds while respecting local customs and cultural differences around the world.”
  • WrestlingNews.co says WWE told wrestlers if they objected to the Greatest Royal Rumble show they could stay home and not participate.
  • Daniel Bryan is going to be working a full house show schedule starting soon, per the Observer.
  • WWE clocked Mike Kanellis’ elimination in the Greatest Royal Rumble at 3 seconds, meaning Santino Marella’s record 1 second elimination in 2009 is safe.

If you have heard of any interesting rumors that you’d like to add, feel free to post them in the comments section below. Just remember they are rumors and not confirmed as fact, so please take them as such. Have fun with it. And check our weekly Rumor Look Back here to keep track of how often rumors turn out to be correct!

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Aiden English may have been injured on Tombstone spot with The Undertaker

Aiden English may have been injured on Tombstone spot with The Undertaker

The tombstone piledriver from The Undertaker to Aiden English at the Greatest Royal Rumble show was apparently worse than it looked if you only watched it at regular speed. The move looked bad enough when I saw it live but, as you can see below, he may have been injured as his head hit the […]

The post Aiden English may have been injured on Tombstone spot with The Undertaker appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Once more, at Backlash

The series opened at WrestleMania 34 with AJ Styles scoring a clean victory over Shinsuke Nakamura, who followed it up by turning heel with a low blow. It continued at Greatest Royal Rumble, where they went to a double countout because Nakamura’s latest low blow made the WWE champion snap.

It will reach its conclusion, maybe, possibly, at the upcoming Backlash pay-per-view (PPV) scheduled for Sun., May 6, 2018, at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.

Here’s why this is necessary, according to WWE:

It goes without saying that, by the time the two competitors reached Saudi Arabia, their mutual animosity proved to be so explosive their brutal rematch inevitably spill out to the ringside area, igniting a brawl that left neither Superstar willing to answer the referee’s 10-count. As a result, the contest was left with no clear winner. Unsatisfied, The Phenomenal One added fuel to the fire by unleashing a post-match assault of sheer frustration on his underhanded adversary, making a return match at WWE Backlash an absolute necessity.

Their second match was better than their first. Perhaps the third will be their best yet?

Here’s the updated Backlash match card:

  • AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura (WWE championship)
  • Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe
  • Seth Rollins vs. The Miz (Intercontinental championship)
  • Nia Jax vs. Alexa Bliss (Raw women’s championship)
  • Carmella vs. Charlotte Flair (SmackDown women’s championship)
  • Daniel Bryan vs. Big Cass

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41 of the 50 men in the Greatest Rumble did not compete on the main card of WrestleMania

The main thought that crossed my mind while watching the 50-Man Greatest Royal Rumble Match is that there were a ton of lower card guys in the match, as well as performers who are not on the WWE main roster. Of course that is inevitable when 50 spots need to be filled, but we know there were some bigger stars from the undercard who could have joined the match.

Afterwards I was going through the list of 50 names and realized that most of these guys did not perform on the main card of WrestleMania 34.

First, here are the 9 superstars from the rumble match who did compete on the main card of WrestleMania 34:

1. Daniel Bryan
2. Kofi Kingston
3. Kurt Angle
4. Bobby Roode
5. Big E
6. Randy Orton
7. Braun Strowman
8. Kevin Owens
9. Shane McMahon

Now here are the remaining 41 names, who I will break down into a few different categories:

WrestleMania 34 Pre-Show Battle Royal

1. Dolph Ziggler
2. Sin Cara
3. Curtis Axel
4. Mike Kanellis
5. Viktor
6. Dash Wilder
7. Primo
8. Bo Dallas
9. Scott Dawson
10. Goldust
11. Konnor
12. Luke Gallows
13. Rhyno
14. Fandango
15. Chad Gable
16. Mojo Rawley
17. Tyler Breeze
18. Karl Anderson
19. Apollo Crews
20. Heath Slater
21. Baron Corbin
22. Titus O’Neil
23. Tye Dillinger
24. Curt Hawkins
25. Shelton Benjamin

Superstar Shakeup Returns

1. Bobby Lashley
2. Big Cass

Past WWE Stars

1. Mark Henry
2. Hornswoggle
3. Rey Mysterio
4. The Great Khali
5. Chris Jericho

Other

1. Hiroki Sumi
2. Tony Nese
3. Xavier Woods
4. Elias
5. Drew Gulak
6. Tucker Knight
7. Roderick Strong
8. Babatunde
9. Dan Matha

25 of the 30 men who competed in this year’s Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal returned to compete in the 50-Man Greatest Royal Rumble match. The five Andre Battle Royal participants who did not return for the 50-Man match include Aiden English, Matt Hardy, Kane, R-Truth, and Zack Ryder.

Elias and Xavier Woods ended up in the “Other” category, but one could easily group them with the 9 stars who had a role on the main card of WrestleMania 34.

On the surface it might be easy to guess why Sami Zayn did not compete in this match, but didn’t he state on Raw that he would be there?

Was there enough star power in this 50-Man Greatest Royal Rumble match to maintain your interest throughout, Cagesiders? Or do you think a few bigger names from the undercard such as Triple H, John Cena, Jeff Hardy, Jinder Mahal, Cesaro, Sheamus, Bray Wyatt, and Woken Matt Hardy should have pulled double duty on this night?

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Cageside Community Star Ratings: 50-Man Greatest Royal Rumble Match

Welcome to Cageside Community Star Ratings for Greatest Royal Rumble!

For some wrestling fans, star ratings are a way of life. It’s one thing to say that a match is good or bad, but can you actually put a number on it?

The star rating system is a scale ranging from 0 to 5 with increments of 0.25. A 5-star match is as close to perfect as it gets while a 0-star match is a complete dud.

Determining the star rating for a given match is a highly subjective process. In general the goal is to wrap up all the important elements of a match into one simple number. Some factors to consider may include the story and booking of the match, the workrate of the performers, ring psychology, length of the match, audience reaction, and so forth.

There is no such thing as a wrong answer, because every wrestling fan consumes this art form in a different way.

The purpose of Cageside Community Star Ratings is for the readers to assign star ratings to every single match on a given WWE pay-per-view event. These results will be tabulated and summarized after every match on the pay-per-view has been voted on by the community.

The first match up for debate from Greatest Royal Rumble is the 50-Man Greatest Royal Rumble Match.

Please select a star rating in the poll below and discuss your thoughts on this match in the comments section.

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WATCH: Daniel Bryan reveals who is responsible for the nasty chop marks on his chest

WATCH: Daniel Bryan reveals who is responsible for the nasty chop marks on his chest

Daniel Bryan was in the ring for almost the entire Greatest Royal Rumble match on Friday. It was an epic performance and he now holds the record for the longest time in a Royal Rumble match at 1 hour and 16 minutes. That number shattered Rey Mysterio’s 1 hour and 2-minute record that was set in […]

The post WATCH: Daniel Bryan reveals who is responsible for the nasty chop marks on his chest appeared first on Wrestling News.

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Plans were changed for Hornswoggle at Greatest Royal Rumble + backstage news from the show

Plans were changed for Hornswoggle at Greatest Royal Rumble + backstage news from the show

Many of you may have noticed that there was no crowd noise during the backstage promos at Greatest Royal Rumble. The reason why is because the backstage stuff was not shown on the live screens. WWE took a few minutes do backstage interviews with Chris Jericho and Daniel Bryan so they could kill some time […]

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anyone who objected going to the event was allowed to pass on the trip and Sami allegedly took them up on the offer. It’s believed Zayn did s · “WWE is committed to embracing individuals from all backgrounds while respecting local customs and cultural differences around the world.” N · Sami Zayn reportedly opted to stay home instead of compete in Saudi Arabia at Greatest Royal Rumble and WWE has released a vague statement on

Sami Zayn Reportedly Opted to Stay Home During Greatest Royal Rumble

Sami Zayn reportedly opted to stay home instead of compete in Saudi Arabia at Greatest Royal Rumble and WWE has released a vague statement on the matter.

According to WrestlingNews.co, anyone who objected going to the event was allowed to pass on the trip and Sami allegedly took them up on the offer. It’s believed Zayn did so because he’s of Syrian descent and diplomatic ties between Syria/Saudi Arabia are strained.

The statement released by WWE simply says, “WWE is committed to embracing individuals from all backgrounds while respecting local customs and cultural differences around the world.”

No word on whether any other male wrestlers opted out as well.

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Vince McMahon thanks Saudi Arabia

Vince McMahon thanks Saudi Arabia

Following the Greatest Royal Rumble show, Vince McMahon took to Twitter to thank the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Thank you to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for giving the Greatest Royal Rumble to the @WWE Universe, an event that’s truly the first of its kind. #WWEGRR pic.twitter.com/0lJw4zP8y3 — Vince McMahon (@VinceMcMahon) April 28, 2018 As […]

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Lex Luger opens up on Elizabeth, his relationship with Randy Savage before and after her death + more

Lex Luger opens up on Elizabeth, his relationship with Randy Savage before and after her death + more

There’s a very interesting interview with “The Total Package” Lex Luger on Sean Mooney’s podcast. On getting arrested the night of Elizabeth’s death: “I was sitting out in my front yard and they told me that she didn’t make it. So I remember, when they went through my place, they found all the drugs and […]

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Batista gives more details on WWE not returning his calls, ready to retire if a deal can’t be reached for next year

Batista gives more details on WWE not returning his calls, ready to retire if a deal can’t be reached for next year

This week, Dave Batista gave more details on what went down between himself and WWE back in January when they were in talks for him to team with Ronda Rousey at WrestleMania. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter was the first to report that WWE’s first choice was The Rock. They weren’t able to […]

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Impact’s Redemption fallout couldn’t compete with the NFL Draft

The numbers are in for this week’s episode (Apr. 26) of Impact Wrestling, and viewership dropped for their Redemption pay-per-view fallout. The audience was 308K, all the way down from 373K.

Among the coveted 18-49 demographic, the number dipped from 0.09 to 0.07.

Impact was up against the powerhouse that was the NFL Draft. The NFL’s first night of pomp and circumstance surrounding teams reading names was broadcasted on three different stations and totaled around 11 million viewers.

Impact’s Redemption fallout was never going to be able to really compete. It’d be interesting to know how they would have done with their normal competition after a well received pay-per-view.

Next week they’ve advertised Su Yung vs. Rosemary and an X Division title match between champion Matt Sydal and Taiji Ishimori.

The numbers from the last month:

  • This week: 308 / 0.07
  • Apr. 19: 373K / 0.09
  • Apr. 12: 381K / 0.11
  • Apr. 5: 294K / 0.06
  • Mar. 28: 399K / 0.1

You can find a recap of this week’s show here.

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Former WWE Superstar wants a match with Charlotte Flair: “Ask your dad who the f**k I am!”

Former WWE Superstar wants a match with Charlotte Flair: “Ask your dad who the f**k I am!”

Former WWE Women’s Champion Jazz apparently has a bone to pick with former Smackdown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair. Flair congratulated Braun Strowman on his win at the Greatest Royal Rumble show and, seemingly out of nowhere, Jazz chimed in with some not-so-nice things to say about Flair. It’s unclear if there is heat there or […]

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WWE statement on Sami Zayn not being booked for the Greatest Royal Rumble

WWE statement on Sami Zayn not being booked for the Greatest Royal Rumble

For those of you that have asked about Sami Zayn, WWE issued the following statement on why he was not booked to appear at the Greatest Royal Rumble: “WWE is committed to embracing individuals from all backgrounds while respecting local customs and cultural differences around the world.” What we heard was that anyone that had […]

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