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Wednesday, February 21, 2018

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Eyes On WWE: Top 5 Wrestlers On RAW

By @TrueGodImmortal

If you haven't noticed, the quality of RAW has improved a little bit over the last few weeks or so. A lot of that can be attributed to the growing number of good matches on the show, while some would give the credit to the booking of some of the top wrestlers on the show. Whatever the case may be, there are a number of wrestlers who make the WWE what it is and truly showcases what RAW should be about. Who are the top 5 wrestlers on the show? Let's take a look.

5. Finn Balor 

-He hasn't quite found his footing on the show yet, but Balor is getting there. Perhaps a heel turn is important. Or maybe, he just need a title shot that pushes him over the top. Whatever the case, Finn is a very good wrestler, and his character has improved much more since joining forces once again with Gallows and Anderson to form The Club. Will Balor gain momentum going into Mania? That remains to be seen, but right now he is definitely top 5.

4. The Miz

-The current Intercontinental Champion is the best all around performer on the show. His promos are top notch, and his match are mostly good. However, when we look back on the period of time that he was out of action, you realized just how important Miz is to RAW. In terms of in ring work, Miz has become top 3 and as a promo cutter, he is easily the best on the show. The only thing keeping him out of the top 3 is momentum and a push, otherwise Miz might be the best on the show.

3. Roman Reigns 

-I am not a fan of Reigns. I have never been. He still isn't extremely over with the crowds, and he still isn't consistent in big match situations, but I can really tell that he's improved in the ring beyond measure. A majority of the good matches on RAW seem to come from Reigns, it just is unfortunate that his matches almost always end with him winning. He's had solid matches with Miz, Seth Rollins, and more over the recent months, but the only thing that keeps him out of the top two is that his character is still ridiculously stale and his promos are still pretty boring. If Reigns can just improve on those last two things, he could actually take the top spot.

2. Braun Strowman 

-The most over wrestler on the roster now. Braun deserves a monster push that the WWE isn't ready to give him. Braun has improved in every way, and despite him not being the best wrestler in the game, he is the most popular wrestler in WWE. That is not something to take lightly considering his roots and where he started from. Braun delights crowds every time he steps into the ring and the crowds go wild. If Braun can get his merchandise and catchphrases to continue catching on, this might end up being the best hope for the WWE to return to prominence on RAW. Well, he's one of the hopes. The other?

1. Seth Rollins 

-It is quite simple. Seth Rollins is the man. He just proved it with the gauntlet match and he's been doing it in the tag team division for RAW. I'll be honest, the only watchable matches at the RAW shows were the tag team title matches that took place during the Shield vs The Bar feud. Seth Rollins has been putting in work for months and has been the most underappreciated wrestler on the show and now that he's able to get back to singles competition, he seems ready to become the MAN once again. If Seth Rollins isn't the WWE or Universal Champion by the end of 2018, the company failed. He is the centerpiece going into the rest of the year.


Tuesday, February 20, 2018

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EOTR Retro: Wrestlemania 30 Review

By @TrueGodImmortal

The day is approaching. Wrestlemania 34. In New Orleans. The last time the WWE was in New Orleans for Mania, things went extremely well.... for the most part. Considered by many to be the best Mania of the last 7 or 8 years (maybe longer), Wrestlemania 30 saw a company that had alienated their audience in a way try to right their wrongs and fix everything. After the disastrous Royal Rumble win by Batista and the nonsense that Daniel Bryan had to endure to get to the main event, the WWE set up a dream scenario for the biggest event of the year where Bryan would face Triple H earlier in the night and then go on to take on Batista and Randy Orton for the WWE Title if he was able to defeat Triple H. Along with that, WWE would bring back Hulk Hogan for the event and have him become the host of Mania, and they would tease appearances from The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin. Also on the card, The Undertaker vs Brock Lesnar, John Cena vs Bray Wyatt, and more.

After a Pre-Show match between four teams over the WWE Tag Team Titles, the show would kick off with Hulk Hogan in the ring as the host to a resounding cheer. Hogan would be interrupted by Stone Cold, giving us a once in a lifetime moment with Austin and Hogan at Mania together. The Rock would interrupt later and we would be treated to a segment with the three biggest stars in the history of the business. It was a great moment for nostalgia and one of my favorite moments of Wrestlemania, but it was merely a precursor to what would be a shocking and inspiring night in WWE. What about the rest of the Mania card? Let's revisit it, shall we?

*Daniel Bryan vs Triple H

-The best match of the night opens the show and it was excellent. Daniel Bryan was essentially at the top of his game, and he was the most popular wrestler at the time. He had fought to get a title shot and he would have the opportunity to do so during the early part of the show if he defeated Triple H. If Triple H won, he would have the chance to fight in the main event, but it was clear what the plan was. Bryan would defeat all remaining members of Evolution and move on to become the World Champion. The action here is excellent as there is technical wrestling, brawling, and an amazing finish that saw Bryan notch a huge career victory over Triple H and prepare himself for the main event. It was showtime. 

*The Shield vs Kane and The New Age Outlaws

-The match was a squash match and it was more comedic than anything. Lasting only three minutes, The Shield would destroy Kane and The Outlaws, staking their claim as the best force in the company. There isn't much to say about this match aside from the fact that The Shield dominated and walked away as the winners without an issue. This was dominance for sure by The Shield.

*31 Man Andre The Giant Battle Royal

-Another match that didn't have a substantial build to it, this match didn't seem to really have a purpose. It was clear that the match would be full of the leftover superstars who wanted a spot on Mania and of course, this match would feature names like Rey Mysterio, Cody Rhodes, Kofi Kingston, and more before Cesaro would pull off the big victory. Cesaro was essentially the most over guy in the match and eliminating Big Show gave him unprecedented momentum that of course, the WWE messed up. Still, this was a big moment for Cesaro.

*John Cena vs Bray Wyatt

-So, Wyatt was on the verge of becoming a big star, he just needed a win over Cena. Cena, a man who had been a main eventer for over 8 years at this point, should have put Wyatt over at the highest stage for wrestlers. Instead, Wyatt would put up an amazing effort before he would end up losing the match cleanly, and it didn't nothing positive for his career. The truth is, when we look back at the match, it all builds up to the inevitable and it was clear from a mile away. Cena defeats Wyatt and ruins his momentum before moving on and becoming champion a few months down the line. Wyatt however, seemed to lose his footing after this match and never recovered.

*Brock Lesnar vs The Undertaker 

-So, this is the match. This is the end. This is where Undertaker decides to end his streak. This is where Brock Lesnar ends his streak following a relatively boring match. This is where Brock finally ends the streak. This is where the world of wrestling changes. Well, that's a bit dramatic. Still, one could truly look at this match and see the end of an era. Taker hasn't been the same since. Now, I'll be honest. Brock became a much more lazy wrestler after this match and honestly, this battle just didn't have the action I hoped it would. Taker had a concussion halfway through and that definitely was important to the outcome, as he seemed out of it and the match suffers as a result. It ended so strangely and I didn't expect to see him actually lose the match. When he did, time stood still. Brock became the one in 21-1 and the wrestling world was never really the same for The Undertaker as a result.

*Vickie Guerrero Invitational 

-A match for the WWE Divas title that didn't really capture my attention. I don't remember much of the contest and I honestly don't want to revisit it too much. All that I know is that it was full of women with name value like Layla, Naomi, Natalya, and more, but they would all fall to the woman who had the division on lock, AJ Lee. Aside from that note, this match is useless, but AJ gets another notch under her belt.

*Daniel Bryan vs Batista vs Randy Orton 

-The main event was excellent. Batista won th Rumble and Bryan won his way into the contest, so the stage was set. Orton had been a subpar champion and Bryan was the most popular guy at the time, so this was the perfect storm. Bryan came into the match injured but that just added to his legend. The action here was fast paced and it's the best Mania main event of the last 5 to 8 years honestly. Bryan would step up big time and the crowd would be on his side, with him making Batista tap to win the title to the excitement of the fans who witnessed it. Yes, Wrestlemania is a big event, but no big event is complete without good execution. The execution for WM30 is one of the best in recent years, and the crowning of Daniel Bryan makes this Mania a true classic.


Monday, February 19, 2018

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Eyes On WWE: The 7 Greatest WWE T-Shirts

By @TrueGodImmortal

When fans enter the WWE events, one thing that can almost always be seen is the merchandise. Whether wrist bands, hats, bandanas, or the standard go to, T-Shirts, fans flock to support their favorites and there is no better way to do that than shirts. With that being said, over the years in WWE, we've seen some of the most iconic shirts that made an impact just like the wrestler it was made for. Today, I wanted to rank the 7 greatest WWE shirts. Which shirts make the list? Read on to find out.

7. Macho Man's Purple Classic

-There aren't many shirts during the era that I remember, but during the 80s and beyond, I can vividly remember seeing this shirt on the old Coliseum Videos, but since the untimely death of Randy Savage, this shirt has taken on a life of its own. You can still see fans wearing this for nostalgic purposes, which proved the staying power of this iconic piece of merchandise.

6. The Rock's Just Bring It 

-My favorite thing about the Rock and his merchandise is that it was simple. A majority of his shirts kept it simple, going for a simple design on a black shirt and for me, this is the most iconic shirt from one of the greatest. Rock would wear this shirt a lot during 2000 and 2001, but he would have different editions of Just Bring It style shirts through his other runs, including his most recent in WWE, but the original is easily one of the most popular and important WWE shirts. It is the essential Rock shirt for WWE.

5. Rowdy Roddy Piper's Hot Rod Shirt 

-This shirt is essentially resurrected due to the new acquisition of Ronda Rousey and her Piper inspired merchandise, but back in the day, this shirt was iconic and it remains that. Piper was a legendary heel, and every heel needs a signature shirt. This was his signature shirt. One of the most important shirts ever in WWE history still lives on today and brings nostalgic feelings every time you see it.

4. CM Punk's Best In The World

-I remember when I got this shirt. I was excited. Beyond belief. This shirt sums up an era honestly. CM Punk was the MAN in 2011-2012 and this shirt was flying off of the shelves as soon as he walked out with it on at Money In The Bank 2011. His merchandise was so popular and he became the new merchandise king through 2011-2013, but there is no shirt more important than this one in his career. With an edgy design that catches the eye, the white shirt became an iconic piece of merchandise and anytime you think of CM Punk in WWE, this shirt comes to mind instantly.

3. The Original D-Generation X Shirt 

-While the DX merchandise has always been lucrative, it was the most simple of their merchandise to be the biggest earner. With the DX logo on the front and the silver font of "Two Words, Suck It" on the back, the shirt would fly off the shelves at WWF events and this is the second most iconic shirt of the Attitude Era. There are more DX shirts that were popular, but this one takes the cake and is a top 5 shirt of all time in wrestling and easily top 3 in WWE history.

2. Hulkamania 

-The biggest shirt of the 80s and one of the greatest in wrestling. Whether it was the red shirt with the yellow lettering or the yellow shirt with the red lettering, this shirt was the symbol for Hulk Hogan and it was the craze for most fans. The crowds would be full of yellow and red for Hogan during his prime and there is no way that this shirt can go below the top 2. In some cases, it might actually be no. 1, but Austin 3:16 was such a bigger moment that I think Hulkamania is comfortably in the top 2 of WWE shirts and top 5 of wrestling shirts all time (probably no. 3).

1. The Austin 3:16 Shirt 

-The greatest of them all. There is no shirt in WWF history that feels as important as this one and there is no shirt that has sold more units than this one during the Attitude Era. Released in 1996/1997, this shirt has seen many different styles and has always been a top seller. Austin would make the Austin 3:16 catchphrase a huge deal and every week, the WWF crowd would flock to buy this shirt and the arena would be filled with Austin 3:16. Aside from the NWO shirt, there is no shirt in wrestling history on the same level of Austin 3:16, not even Hulkamania or DX. Austin was the biggest star of the era and his merchandise moved record numbers then, making the Austin 3:16 shirt the GOAT without a doubt.


Wednesday, February 14, 2018

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Eyes On Elimination Chamber: The 5 Greatest Elimination Chamber Matches

By @TrueGodImmortal

As Elimination Chamber approaches, we wanted to continue discussing the Chamber matches of the past, and what better way than to revisit the best Chamber matches in the history of the match. There have been a number of solid ones, so after discussing the worst, it's only right we discuss the best of the best. Let's take a look at the 5 greatest.

5. 2010 World Heavyweight Championship Elimination Chamber 

-I didn't have the highest hopes for this Chamber, but it was pretty good overall. I watched the build and got excited about what was to come in this match from an in ring perspective, but it was obvious that Undertaker wasn't going to walk out of the Chamber with the title. The participants would be Taker, Chris Jericho, John Morrison, Rey Mysterio, R-Truth, and CM Punk, and this match would lead to future feuds heading into Wrestlemania. Truth was eliminated first, Punk was eliminated by Rey, and that would lead to their feud. The final two would be Taker and Jericho, and HBK would show up to cost Taker the match and the title in a thrilling finish. Jericho wins a very good Chamber match that went over 35 minutes. It was great action throughout the match and the finish put it over the top.

4. 2003 Summerslam Elimination Chamber 

-I really didn't have a fond memory of this match at one point. I didn't like the ending and I'll be honest, it felt as if the match served no purpose in truly getting Goldberg over anymore. He had been undefeated in WWE until this match, but watching it back, it's a really solid Chamber match. The only person who didn't add much to it was Kevin Nash, but he was eliminated very quickly as expected. Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, and Shawn Michaels however kept the action ablaze and fun, as we watched all three do great work along with Triple H. Goldberg wasn't a bad piece to the match, but he was definitely a secondary figure who would end up serving only to put over Triple H in the end, taking a pinfall loss (his first in WWE) courtesy of a sledgehammer.

3. 2009 World Heavyweight Title Elimination Chamber 

-When No Way Out was still an important PPV, the Chamber was an essential piece of the show. This match would be a shocker in a way, with Edge entering in the match after losing his title early in the night. The lineup for the match didn't jump off the screen, as Mike Knox and Kane didn't appeal to me, but Jericho, Mysterio, Edge (who took Kofi Kingston's place), and Cena made up for that. Both Kane and Knox were eliminated fairly early, and the final four would put on a classic show. Cena would be eliminated earlier than expected, meaning we would have a new champion for sure. After Jericho went out next, we got about 7 minutes of top tier action from Mysterio and Edge, with Edge taking the win and the World Heavyweight Title.

2. 2008 No Way Out Elimination Chamber 

-There were two Chamber matches at this event and they would both be solid. However, the RAW Chamber (for the no. 1 Contender spot at Mania) match was just slightly better. There was something about the lineup that really made the action flow well, with Chris Jericho, Shawn Michaels, Umaga, Jeff Hardy, and Triple H all putting in work (along with JBL) to deliver a great match. This is a classic Chamber match, with Triple H standing tall at the end after a great sequence with Jeff Hardy. I would have liked the match to go a little longer, but for 24 minutes, this was an exciting battle.

1. 2002 Survivor Series Elimination Chamber 

-This is the standard. Period. The greatest Chamber match and one of the best matches in Survivor Series history, if not the best. Honestly, there is something about this match that feels more than nostalgic. It holds so much within it that it is a moment in time for wrestling. Along with the fact that Shawn Michaels would return to wrestling officially (in the worst pair of wrestling tights ever), it would mark the first time he was in the ring with guys like RVD, Booker T, and Chris Jericho. That was a great moment in itself along with the action that carried this match. Going almost 40 minutes, this match was building to something big, and the culmination gave us just that as HBK would hit the Sweet Chin Music and pin Triple H to win the match and the title to one of the loudest reactions I've ever heard in WWE history. That, along with the match itself easily makes it the best Chamber match and it's not even close.


Tuesday, February 13, 2018

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Eyes On WWE: Ranking The Last 5 Wrestlemania Main Events

By @TrueGodImmortal

At one point, Wrestlemania used to be the biggest event of the year for the main event. Now, Mania is just a spectacle with a decent card and one big match or maybe two solid contests that the world wants to see. Admittedly, the last 4 out of 5 main events have been disappointing, and that's the fun of this next article. Where do they rank? All 5 of the last main events of Mania. Does Reigns vs Brock take the cake? Is Reigns vs Triple H the worst? Well, let's take a look.

5. Wrestlemania 33
Roman Reigns vs The Undertaker 

-The worst main event I've seen in Mania history... at least in the 2000s. I don't understand it really. When I saw this match announced, I knew it would be horrible. I knew what to expect and yet, somehow I was still surprised at how bad the match was. Taker didn't have anything left in the tank. Reigns couldn't carry the match. No one wanted to see Reigns retire Taker. Yet, here we are. Reigns wins a horrible match that really killed a crowd that wanted something to cheer for. The WWE doesn't learn from their mistakes and simply put, Reigns retiring Taker was a mistake. Along with putting this match on last. That was a horrible idea.

4. Wrestlemania 32
Roman Reigns vs Triple H 

-This was another forced attempt at making Roman Reigns the man in the business and it just didn't work. This was a match that was 5 minutes too long and felt boring. They had no chemistry in the ring and I can't remember anything memorable about the match besides the Stephanie spot. That honestly didn't make anything better, and while I know that Reigns had to get another win, at some point, you would think that WWE would get the picture. Sure, Reigns is improved as a performer, but the last few years at Mania show that he can't get it done on the biggest stage. Perhaps that'll change this year when he has an unnecessary rematch against Brock, but at what cost? He has headlined Mania three times in a row and all three matches were underwhelming IMO, and this one was really just a long drawn out battle that ended the night with a hilarious chorus of boos.

3. Wrestlemania 29
John Cena vs The Rock 

-I don't know why we had this match occur. I don't get it. The first one was fine. The first match was pretty good. This was overkill. This had more finishers than necessary, and was essentially a match full of filler until the obvious finish. The action would pick up a little bit near the end, but Cena and Rock 2 didn't have the story that the first one had. There was no story minus some weak form of redemption for Cena, but he was the focal point of the company for the entire year over CM Punk (who was more popular with fans at the time), so his redemption was forced (see a pattern with the main event?) and contrived. Cena wins the match, but no one was really excited and happy, marking yet another year where the fans didn't go home happy. Perhaps CM Punk vs The Undertaker should have main evented, as it was the hottest match of the night and a classic in its own right.

2. Wrestlemania 31
Brock Lesnar vs Roman Reigns (vs Seth Rollins)

-I actually don't like this match. At all. I find it to be a bunch of finishers and just an ass kicking by Brock. Sure, there was an attempt at storytelling to force the narrative of Reigns as the next superman, but it felt so forced (the pattern) that I couldn't get into it. Still, I did like how the ending went down, as they attempted to sell it as these two competitors giving all they had and they still couldn't put each other away. Then, Seth Rollins happened. Seth is the reason why this match is no. 2 on the list because his cash in saved in the night from a horrible ending. Seth cashing in is a top 10 Mania moment and the pop he got when he won is a top Mania pop. Brock vs Reigns was nothing special, but the Rollins cash in is historic.

1. Wrestlemania 30
Daniel Bryan vs Batista vs Randy Orton 

-Of course. This is the easiest one. This is the clearest choice. This was easy. Daniel Bryan being crowned after the crazy path he took to get there is what saved Mania. The fans have attempted to save Mania every year, and for some reason, Vince finally gave in. He is stubborn enough to not give in other times, but in this case, he didn't give in. That's noble of Vince.... right? No. It should have been Bryan from the start. He should have won the Rumble. He should have had to fight for his shot either way despite that. The story could go the same way without Batista winning the Rumble. Still, this match is great with a lot of solid action and Batista tapping out to Bryan to close the match was a great end. Bryan winning is the best Mania moment of the last 5 years so it was obvious this would be the top pick on the list.


Monday, February 12, 2018

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Eyes On Elimination Chamber: 5 Worst Chamber Matches

By @TrueGodImmortal

With Elimination Chamber coming soon, we wanted to take a look back at the event and the match that takes six contenders and puts them through another form of hell. However, the competitors aren't the only ones who go through hell. There have been some instances where the fans have gone through hell watching some of these matches and today, I'm here to talk about those times. That's right, let's get into talking about the 5 worst Elimination Chamber Matches.

5. 2011 Smackdown Elimination Chamber 

-I'll be honest. I think this match managed to end a little bit better than some of the others on the list, but to be fair, the rest of this match was pretty standard and boring. Perhaps it was the cast that was a part of the Chamber? Maybe. Drew McIntyre, The Big Show, Kane, and Wade Barrett really don't scream out classic match, especially at the time. While I did enjoy the last battle between Edge and Rey Mysterio, the match itself overall was pretty boring. Still, Edge wins and walks into Mania as champion, but little did we know.... It would be the last match for Edge. That's bittersweet looking back.

4. 2013 Elimination Chamber 

-Good lord. The Jack Swagger experiment. If not for the fact that two of the others had high expectations (and the second choice was just awful and worse), I would put this at no. 1 honestly. It was a solid match for the most part, but once it became clear who was winning.... It was all downhill from there. Anytime you have Randy Orton, Daniel Bryan, and Chris Jericho in a match, they should win. Not Jack Swagger. Jack Swagger didn't deserve to win this match and the fact that this match was essentially secondary, maybe third in importance on the card.... It says a lot. Swagger wins to a bit of indifference from the wrestling world and this is one of the worst decisions the WWE made........ in early 2013 at least.

3. 2010 RAW Elimination Chamber

-With a pretty standard match set in place with opportunities to shine for Ted Dibiase and Kofi Kingston, I found this match to be a bit boring for the most part honestly. Sheamus came in as the WWE Champion, but with Mania around the corner, it was clear he wasn't leaving the Chamber with the title. The match came down to Triple H and John Cena and being that this was 2010, Cena won. What takes the match down in quality is the fact that Batista came out and got a match for the title with Cena, making the Chamber match pretty pointless in seconds. It had solid action, but just not enough to be engaging the entire duration.

2. 2015 Intercontinental Title Elimination Chamber 

-So, the 2015 Elimination Chamber show was pretty rough in general. I mean, let's be real. After we watched the previous years and the great matches in the Chamber, this might have been the worst way to bring the Chamber full circle. Daniel Bryan was forced to relinquish the title, which was annoying, and then the choices to replace him were pretty subpar. Mark Henry, Ryback, Sheamus, R-Truth, Dolph Ziggler, and Wade Barrett felt more like a match during the second hour of RAW than a PPV main event and Ryback winning basically drove that feeling home. It had some good moments however with Sheamus, Ziggler, and Truth, but overall, this was an awful match.

1. 2015 Tag Team Elimination Chamber

-So when this became a special in the summer, no one could have expected the first ever tag team Chamber match. Well, even if you did, you wouldn't have expected it to end up so poorly. This was one of the weirdest matches anyway, as we saw teams like Lucha Dragons and The Ascension be wasted and a horrible Kalisto spot that took far too long to get to. Honestly, I was glad to see the New Day retain, but everything else about this match was awful. It was a good concept in theory, but the execution was terrible. This is the worst Chamber match without question.