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The Wrap Up: The Golden Ticket

Updated: Jan 8

Reverse Hipster’s Highlights

6. (NXT) Carmelo Hayes vs. Grayson Waller NXT Title Match

Carmelo and Grayson Waller had an above-average match with enough exciting highlights to get them on the list. Carmelo was smooth, as usual. He executed an amazing floating DDT off the ropes, and his flying head scissors finishing move, First 48, is always fun to watch. Grayson Waller kept up with him. Grayson caught Melo in the air with a rolling stunner. It's amazing that Grayson was able to time the move so well. Waller went to the air to break Carmelo and the announce table in half. However, Carmelo capitalized on Grayosn tripping and hurting his knee at the end of the match.

The finish didn’t do justice to the match. In truth, I can’t tell if the match was supposed to end that way or if Waller messed up, and Carmelo made it look like Grayson Waller did the right thing. After the match, Carmelo called out Bron, which makes no sense because Melo already beat him. However, the nonsensical segment was saved when Bron arrived and took out Trick Williams and speared Carmelo through a wall.

5. (NXT) Stacks & Toni D vs. Pretty Deadly

These are two awesome teams who started out as heels but have won the crowd over with their skills and charisma. The spots in this match were crazy. Toni D hit Pretty Deadly with a wheel barrel, and Stacks caught air on a surfboard and landed on Pretty Deadly. Pretty Deadly actually had the match in hand in the beginning when they stuffed Stacks into the back of the car and knocked out Tony, but then Stacks sprayed them with a fire extinguisher, and one by one, Pretty Deadly was thrown in the back of the car and Stacks & Tony road off into the sunset on victory road.

4. (Raw) Bad Bunny Beats Down Damien Priest

Bad Bunny would be a great WWE Superstar if he wasn’t already an international superstar. He looks like a star, he talks like a star, and he performs like one. He came to Raw and beat the crap out of Damien Priest with a kendo stick and then announced that he would be facing Damien Priest in a Street Fight at Backlash. That's gonna be a big money match. Speaking of great Celebrity performers, I hope one day down the road, Bad Bunny can face Logan Paul.

3. (Raw) The Bloodline

Once again, the Bloodline has put together masterful segments. After The Usos announced they would be taking on Sami and Ko for the title on SmackDown, they hyped this up as the moment they would get everything back, and they would do it for Roman. Sami flipped that statement and asked Jey what would happen if they lost, especially after they attached Roman’s name to the match. When Jey brought this up to Jimmy, Jimmy freaked out and berated Jey for even talking to Sami. However, Solo silently loomed behind the Usos throughout the convo. Foreshadowing?

After this convo, Jimmy went and confronted Sami and reminded him that his tag team partner is someone who has been known to flip on his partners, and not only that, but Sami has wronged Ko over and over again. If they lose the titles, what ties them together? I love psychological warfare. This match was already an Undisputed Tag Title match, but with both teams facing ruin, if they lose, this match has taken on even more meaning.

2. (Raw) LWO vs. the Bloodline

This six-man tag match was bananas. These teams had tons of momentum going in, and they completely delivered. Joaquin did a Phoenix Splash that took my breath away. It's a rare move, and he pulled it off perfectly. Santos had some of the hardest-hitting knees and kicks, and Legado dominated the Bloodline early. However, all that ended when Solo Samoan Spiked the LWO out of the air like a volleyball, and then the Usos hit the 1D, and it was over. In the end, one team walked out victorious, but neither team looked like losers.

1. (Raw) Triple H Announces NEW WORLD TITLE!

This is huge news for WWE. Roman and the Bloodline have been great, but Raw has needed New World Title . The announcement is the breath of fresh air that WWE desperately needed, especially after Roman retained the Undisputed Title. Now it feels like anything is possible. Anyone could be the new champion, and parity will be restored to Raw and SmackDown. The only thing that could ruin this moment is if Brock won the title.

Rob’s Lowlights

3. WWE Draft Logic, WWE SmackDown

In Kayfabe, it’s hard to make the WWE Draft make sense, as both Raw and SmackDown left champions on the board in favor of picking fan favorites. If I were a GM, I would prioritize picking champions that can bring a championship to my brand (picking Bianca Belair instead of fan favorite Cody Rhodes) and multi-person factions (picking all of Imperium with Intercontinental Champion Gunther instead of just one titleless Becky Lynch), but what do I know? After the draft, WWE announced that undrafted superstars were “free agents” who could appear on both shows. Make it make sense, please, WWE.

2. Masha Slamovich, Impact Wrestling

Masha Slamovich used to feel special. On the flip side of being booked in an impressive undefeated streak, bookers have to find a way to end that streak but maintain the credibility of the star. Only a few months removed from undefeated Slamovich, Impact Wrestling opened with a contest between Slamovich and Jordynne Grace, where Slamovich lost to a roll-up. In my view, it was a display of the failure to capitalize on the momentum of her undefeated streak, as this just felt like another contest to me. Hopefully, her upcoming story with Killer Kelly will be part of making her feel special again.

1. Four Pillars Booking, AEW Dynamite

Fans were sold on a fatal four-way main event between the pillars the second all four guys were in the ring together. AEW didn’t need to take a convoluted path to the main event, continuing to give away the action for free, like Darby Allin vs. Sammy Guevara this week. For smart wrestling fans like AEW’s fan base, it doesn’t make sense to even pretend that the main event will be a one-on-one match at this point. AEW continues to draw out the story, though I’m confident the match will be better than the booking, regardless.

Rob’s Winners of the Week

6. As usual, AEW Rampage was largely skippable.

5. Impact Wrestling had a good week with the Tag Team Champions and Women’s Champions in action, but they still don’t have the star power to keep up with the other shows.

4. AEW Dynamite is weirdly cooled down as a show, even though I’m excited about the feuds going into Double or Nothing.

3. WWE SmackDown had the excitement of the draft, but for me, it always ends up being a little underwhelming. The only true highlight of this show was the tag team main event.

2. WWE Raw is kind of on fire right now. The feuds feel special, and the show is starting to feel must-watch again.

1. NXT Spring Breakin’ wasn’t as good as some of their past special shows, but it was carried by a few good matches and segments, namely the Men’s NXT Championship match.

Reverse Hipsters Weekly Winners

6th Place Rampage

Rampage just had a bunch of random matches with popular stars and a ghost of a plot.

5th place Dynamite

Orange Cassidy made his historic 20th title defense, and Roderick Strong made a decent return, but other than that, the booking was mediocre. Jade’s biggest title defense to date was anti-climatic, ending in a roll-up. The four pillars storyline is making even less sense as time goes on. Now the entire tournament they did means nothing, and despite Sammy winning, everyone else gets a second chance. 4th Place Impact

Impact had a solid show. Killer Kelly called out Masha, which should be an exciting feud. Masha and Grace had a fun rematch, but the roll-up loss for Masha was disappointing. Deonna beat a new opponent in Tag champion Taylor Wilde, but she hasn’t moved on from Jordynne Grace. Other things, like the Death Dollz segment about the Undead Realm or PCO’s match, were good but were more set up than highlight moments.

3rd Place SmackDown

SmackDown was exciting because we got to see the draft picks for Raw and SmackDown. We found out where Roman was going, and there were some exciting call-ups and shake-ups. SmackDown could have done better, but their big-money match didn’t deliver. The Usos lost again. The way Kevin and Sami won was basically by no selling and hulking up, and there was no plot development afterward, so nothing changed.

2nd NXT

NXT Spring Breakin was fun to watch. The Men's title match was awesome the tag team match was awesome. The mixed-tag match was good, but the wrong team won. The women's main event was unsuccessful, in my opinion, because Indi was missing for most of the match and still looks like a fluke champion who had her challengers carry the main event.

1st Raw

Raw was easily the best show on tv. Their highlights dominated the list. They had huge announcements and great matches, and interesting story developments. Raw is the cream of the crop right now.

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