Being The Booker - Page 269 - Wrestling Forum : WWE, TNA, ROH, Wrestling Videos, Women of Wrestling Forums
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Old 07-01-2009, 03:16 PM   #2681 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

Spam: So I see that I only got 9 Points, at least I didn't finish last though, but I except this I what I get for being A Newbie, who thought it would be unprebictable

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Old 07-05-2009, 12:41 PM   #2682 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

The ‘Wolf Beast kicks his own ass’ post…

As I said I would, and as I did with WrestleMania 22, I’m just gonna run down my thought process for booking certain things the way I did.

First up, I get the criticism for the overly long video package to open the show. I knew myself it went too long, and should’ve cut out the section of looking back at other glorious WrestleMania moments. In the end, I couldn’t bring myself to doing it, as tbh, I really liked it ... but it was too much

Unlike last year, I had plenty of available options as the opening contest. Any of the eight person, WWE tag or MITB could’ve opened. I counted out the Cruiserweight match for the sheer fact it had the least build of any feud, and ruled out the US title match, as I didn’t want to kick off with a heel win. In the end, for that reason, it left me with the eight person tag as the viable opener, as it ticked the right boxes.

As the event neared, I had been wracked with thoughts of changing the outcome, and putting MNM and Kennedy over, and give Straight Edge and Alexis Laree another month to chase the belts, and get them on their own, down the line, but (and this ought to be popular) I didn’t want to put the I.C belt back on Kennedy. I’ve got my reasons for that, but I’ll address them in a minute with something else…

Brent Albright has probably been the luckiest champion in this threads history. And by that, I mean he’s held the U.S title belt WAY longer than I had originally intended him to do so. At first, he was to lose the belt back to Matt Hardy at Armageddon. Then, once I decided to go with the Hardy reunion, it was to fall to Batista right after Armageddon … but that was changed to a one on one non-title match. Then, LITERALLY, at the last minute, I rewrote the crappy finish to their U.S title match to keep the belt on Albright a little longer, planning to have Batista (and Lashley) chase the belt for a triple threat at WM, with Batista winning. As I finally decided on the WWE title triple threat, this one had to change, as I didn’t want two triple threat matches at the same show - hence the Lashley injury. So, it was down to Albright and Batista, and again, Batista was set to go over, but once more, I had a change of heart, and decided to go with the heel win.

Now, to kill two birds with one stone. Before anyone begins to think Kennedy will be winding up the same in this thread as he did in real life, can stop worrying. I have massive plans for him over the coming year. That’s why I didn’t want to put the IC strap back on him. He’s held the belt already (not for long mind), he’s been KOTR, and he’s rubbed shoulders with the top dogs on Raw already.

Batista is a little different. I have no plans for him to become an out and out main event like real life, as tbh, I neither feel the need to make him, or want to. As far as I’m concerned, in this ‘reality’ he missed the boat for superstardom. He’ll be one of those guys that can shift from world title picture, and main events to mid card and the US title picture.

As far as MITB goes, I tried my best to make it TOO obvious in the last few weeks that Orton would win, hoping it would throw everyone off the scent. Initially, he wasn’t even going to be part of the match, instead, he’d have been in a match with Ruc Flair. I wasn’t totally sold on it myself, and with not wanting to overload the card like last year, I cut the match, and dropped Orton into MITB. Chris Jericho was also set to be part of the match to increase the star power, and make it less obvious over the winner, but as things transpired, Jericho was needed elsewhere. It was meant to come over as a spot fest, so I’m glad that’s how it was seen. Orton wasn’t always going to go over, but once I made my mind up to go for the cashing in on the same night, he was always the best candidate imo. As for the Little Bastard table spot; that’s the last you’ll see of him in the thread, kept him around this long for that sole purpose

JBL / Hogan was added just for something to break the action up after the MITB spot fest. Don’t be surprised if there is a short term follow up though.

Sorry to all you cruiserweight fans. Apart from a man-crush on Paul London and Jamie Noble, I’ve never been overly fussed on them tbh, but initially I had planned to give these two at least another five minutes. As things went on, and the placement of matches was sorted, this was only ever going to be a bit of a breather match. I do plan on utilising the division more in the coming months though. That’s a promise. As for Kendrick going over, I just felt it was the better move for the long term, rather than stretching out Kash’s run for another month or two.

Little surprised that the WWE Tag Title match wasn’t as popular as I had expected it to be. Was probably my favourite under card match of the show. Overall, I just felt it worked better for AMW to keep the belts as it accomplished a number of things; solidified AMW as the top team on SD, didn’t have a title change that would only last a week or so for a soon to be split Hardy Boys, and kept the heel ratio of wins a little higher. Jeff taking the fall should make one other thing clear in this thread; Matt > Jeff. Expect that to remain the case.

And so … onto the main event portion. Initially, I hadn’t intended on closing with the five main attractions, but I just didn’t feel dropping any of the matches further down the card fit. Foley / Michaels was the least important of the five, so that was always going to go first. And I wanted to make it as violent as possible, but also wanted to throw in a few teases too; hence the reversals of Irish whips into the barbed wire ropes, and the near misses of the thumbtacks on the floor, along with the teases of the table of fire. I really enjoyed writing this match, and went completely balls to the wall with the hardcore element as it would be the only match on the card with the stipulation really. As pointed out though, I did make a bit of a cock up with the ode to Snuka from Foley, as it should’ve been a splash, not a cross body. In the end, both men won, as HBK got the three, and Foley got what he came for, and that was a memorable match at WM. Don’t expect to see Foley for a while, but I’m a mark for the guy, so expect him back eventually.

I completely expected Taker / Angle to be match of the night, without question. In the end, it didn’t turn out that way imo, as there was at least one match that imo, blew it out of the water for my money. Was a little surprised that the feeling from it in some views was that Taker was dominant, as that was not how it was meant to be taken at all. If anything, Angle was written (in my eyes) as the aggressor throughout, although it’s cool to see things interpreted differently than I intended. Can totally see the gripe with Angle recovering so quickly from the Tombstone. Again, the sudden comeback should’ve been written differently, with more of a break in action. Not sure how the finish really came off in the end, with Taker winning it with the triangle. Wanted that to be the finish, in order to show Takers desperation, with Angle having the Deadman literally at his mercy. Hence Taker running out of gas towards the end of the match, and Angle seemingly getting stronger as time wore on. The aftermath, while odd, was an out for me, should I decide not to bring Taker back. He’s pencilled in for at least two more feuds over the year, but, I might just well use this as his swansong. Time will tell.

Lesnar / Triple H was only going to be the overbooked mess of the show. It had been built up that way, with so many people involved, so it should never have come as a surprise that it would turn out with all kinds of ‘bells and whistles’. The only regret I had was the involvement of Tyson. As pointed out in a review for the last Smackdown, the announcement of Tyson as being in the corner of the McMahons was thrown in a little shoddily. In honesty, I had meant to announce that at least a week or so prior to the show. Turns out though, my memory isn’t all that great, and I forgot to add any hype to his involvement. I’d have forgotten completely had it not been for me having a read over WrestleMania just a day or two before posting the last Smackdown, and suddenly remembered I had forgot to mention that Tyson would be in the McMahons corner. As for the match itself, I just wanted to throw just about every swerve I possibly could; hence the Tyson turn on Vince, the Bischoff turn, and the false finishes throughout. Got a lot of enjoyment writing this one, although the first half of the match was admittedly a little shaky at times.

Cut the video package on the triple threat match simply for time constraints on the show, as I’d imagine it’d be pushing pretty close to the full five hours, and with some things going a little long, thought this VP could be sacrificed.

TBH, I wasn’t entirely pleased with the triple threat match. For me, looking back at it, it didn’t come off as special, or truly WM main event level worthy. I also expected to take a lot of flak for not having Edge win the belt, having held MITB for the entire year. I’m sure there are some people that are a little annoyed maybe, since I’ve still yet to put Edge as the top dog, but I can assure anyone with any qualms that over the coming year, Edge will be an integral part of the thread, with a very interesting arc, that I‘m looking forward to exploring. As much luck as Albright has had in the booking of the thread, Edge has had just as much bad luck. Should’ve won the belt last September (if not sooner ) … then December … then now … and got fucked over again here. Like I said though, I’m going to enjoy exploring his frustration at missing out again in the coming months.

Glad no one (bar TKOW :@) predicted Orton cashing in MITB. Wanted it to be a genuine shock, and although it probably doesn’t make much sense for Orton to cash in on Van Dam, considering he has more history with Cena and Christian, I’ll be addressing that point on Raw. Debut of the almighty PUNT~! too, which is a personal favourite of mine.

Going into this event, the one thing putting me off booking Christian and Cena in a face / face match with no added gimmicks, was that I didn’t think it’d end up worthy of a WrestleMania main event. I just wasn’t confident it’d work, and had intended it to go for only 15-20 minutes tops. But as I got writing this, something clicked (much like the Angle/Benoit match of Nemesis 2005 that just kept going as I typed, for those long time readers ) - at least for me, and it seems the general reaction was good too - ideas flowed, and the rough idea I had for the match got thrown out the window, and for me, I’d honestly say this was the best match of the show. It was certainly the most complete imo, with the early stand off, the stare down, the brawl to the outside, the fight through the crowd and back in the ring, and letting loose. Probably could’ve done without the announce table spot - or at least switched it to later in the contest - and the teases with the chair to play off the build up over both mens true colours could’ve been shaped a little differently, but overall, I got total satisfaction from this main event. Without a doubt, and surprisingly, my favourite match on the card, and probably one of the favourite matches I’ve ever wrote in my time here. Not the most technically sound or smoothest, but worthy of a WM main event - the best WM main event I’ve wrote of the three.

Thanks for all the positive feedback, and thanks for all the reviews. I’m glad you all seemed to have enjoyed it. Despite not being as ‘loaded’ as WrestleMania 22, I think the quality was much better, and it’s officially my favourite WrestleMania to have written.

I cant guarantee to return all the feedback, but I’ll be handing out points (more for certain members) to all those who have taken the time to give their thoughts. It’ll probably be some time next month before I get back up and running writing shows, but in that time, I will still be around, handing out the odd review here and there. Currently, I’ve got Patmans latest Raw saved on the PC along with BKBs latest Raw too for review purposes, along with Legends Backlash. Those are the first three randomly that I plan on critiquing - mind you, it could be a week or two before they’ll be done - but I’ll be trying to catch up with all the regulars in the coming weeks, and keeping an eye on any further shows that show up.

Thanks for reading, thanks for rating.

… I’ll be back
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Old 07-06-2009, 11:37 PM   #2683 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

Okay, so in most people's opinion (including mine ) this post is not really needed, but I enjoyed reading through your thoughts leading up to the event, and thought I'd comment on a few things.

It's WrestleMania btw, fuck the video package's length.

These big things for Kennedy interest me, although I do believe you're going to have to build him up in a big way. How many times did he lose to Rey Mysterio? He hasn't exactly been setting the house on fire lately and I'm going to find it random as hell if out of nowhere you just decide to make him start beating big names. Hopefully these big plans are a very, VERY slow road to the main event/upper card.

I personally don't mind you not putting Batista up to the main event because eventually everybody does the same thing with him once he's up there. I'm not knocking all the bookers who do it, because some do it very well, but almost every thread has a Batista attacks some guy because he's a monster storyline. This is no longer fresh, so I like your decision of not pushing him up to the main event.

I don't know if it was just because the match was against Batista and his offense isn't exactly flattering, but the US Title match was definitely the worst match on the card for me. Albright's offense was rather boring, as was his defence, and his mic work doesn't exactly set the world on fire either. If I was you I would be looking for a new US Champion sometime soon.

Even though you were not sure on it, I must say after losing at previous 'Mania's and not exactly doing anything exciting as of late, if Orton didn't win MITB he would have just about been dead in the thread. I definitely think the predictable option was the best option here.

JBL/Hogan doesn't sound appealing at all .

You say you're going to make something of the Cruiserweight division but I'm not to sure if Kendrick is the man to carry the division to new heights in this thread. Hopefully you pair him with a decent wrestler, and a nice feud can open up from there.

AMW winning was great, The Hardyz winning wouldn't have suited me at all, as I find it kind of obvious that they're not going to be a full time thing. Don't keep Jeff around to long, WASTE OF SPACE!

Undertaker leaving on this note is perfect, imo.

I <3 the Lesnar/Triple H match, so don't beat yourself up about the interference, and one little mistake.

Edge will eventually get the gold in this thread, it's only a matter of time but I like the fact you're making us wait even longer. Orton was good decision, because RVD had beaten just about everybody and was beginning to get stale as champion. You must do something great from here with Jericho to.

Christian/Lesnar MUST HAPPEN NOW ALSO...

Wolfy, I've been lazy with reviews as of late, and I'm sure I'll be checking back in with reviews when you get going again, but this is the best I can offer to anything invovled with 'Mania . Show was a great success, and I can't wait for you to be back.

<3
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Old 07-07-2009, 02:09 AM   #2684 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

Makes surprising cameo.

I simply don't have the time to leave a full review for you Wolf, and while overall Mania was quite good, it was in a way, your weakest I've read as a spectacle, to me.

I absolutely LOVED the Lesnar/HHH match in every way, just brilliant with some awesome appeareances throughout. Christian beating Cena, I wet myself that you decided to book him as the winner. Really was fearing that Superjohn may take the win so that made me a happy camper. Didn't feel like the Cruiserweight match really warranted a spot on the card, perhaps as the HEAT main event but nothing more. The midcard matches served their purpose, MITB was a nicely done spotfest as usual and then Orton cashing in later on was quite epic if a little expected. AMW beating the Hardyz pretty much solidifies them as the single handed best in your thread and I'm eager to see who will finally step up and beat them as the only ones who seem to be able to do it are the WGTT.

I will never lose faith in you, you're still going strong and the future looks promising, if a little underwhelming with the chances of some big names (Booker, Taker etc) either retiring or moving on.

Still, that said, I love this thread
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Old 07-07-2009, 03:00 PM   #2685 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

Wrestlemania XXIII Review

I’ve finally caught up Wolf Beast…Very Happy that I did. Wrestlemania’s card this year is looking fantastic. The opening video was fine. Like its been said. Its Wrestlemania…more is always better…IMO.

The Opening was great, adding the touch with celebrities at ringside is always a plus. The problem with most WWE BTB is that Wrestlemania is treated too much like a normal PPV. It shouldn’t be, it’s FREAKING WRESTLEMANIA. Glad to see you treat it that way.

The Opening match was the prefect one to pick for that spot. You have three titles on the line and eight superstars in one match. I like how your not giving too much time to the ladies in this match. Having the Faces win is the right thing to do here. I understand it. I think this being Wrestlemania and you having another Tag match on the card I would have kept the action going and not slowed down with Punk there. Quick tags and stuff…but beyond that I think it was a great opening contest for the PPV. (3 c class stars out of 5)

I’ve never been a huge Batista fan I have to say. I don’t think he should be in the Main Events and I agree that in BTB he usually gets booked the same way. That being said, I think him on the midcard is fine because he has something to add. Now Albright on the other hand is a favorite of mine and I’m happy his US title reign is continuing (even if you didn’t mean for it to be). Maybe a bit too long for this type of match, but beyond that a great 2nd match on the card with a surprising finish, which is what Wrestlemania is lacking as of late. (3 c class stars out of 5)

Money in the Bank matches have to be hard to write. I’ve always found matches with so many guys to be tough to write. Some great high spots with guys trying to get that “Wrestlemania Moment” love it. I predicted Orton picking up the win, but I like the way you have everyone seem like they could win it at anytime. Umaga is a monster here man. MITB matches are what they are…spotfests to set up a new guy to make a run at a title. No need for too much story in the match really. So good match IMO. (3 ½ c class stars out of 5)

JBL/HOGAN!!! Yes. Please, please let this at least become a match at the next PPV. JBL is the perfect Hogan opponent. Unlike Michaels or Orton I have always thought JBL would suite Hogan’s style more. This is the kind of moment to put in there at Wrestlemania.

Cruiserweight match was okay. A bit short. Probably my least favorite match of the night. I think, the problem is that it didn’t really build to anything. It seems that once the match picked up steam it was over. I would have shaved a bit off Batista/Albright and put it on this match. (2 c class stars out of 5)

Hart/Angle thing was a nice addition. Seeing Hart back makes me happy.

AMW vs. Hardy Boys. Solid tag match. I love the ending with the Hardy’s hitting their greatest hits only to get screwed over LOL. I think I would have been a bit upset if the Hardy’s won the belts. Don’t know why. Not a big Hardy fan but don’t hate them. I think the AMW title reign has been fun and I see the Hardy’s going two different ways during the Draft.

Foley/HBK was brutal man. Both men walk out winners. Michaels proves he was the better man and Foley gets his WM moment. Love to see Michaels get hardcore here. No way to win a war unless you get your hands bloody. Love the ending, this type of match should come down to both men giving everything they have for a win. Blood sweat, tears all of it. Great Wrestlemania match man, now that we are in the main attractions, hope you can top this one LOL. (4 c class stars out of 5)

And you top it. I have felt that Angle/Taker never got the chance to have that epic match they should have in the ring. I knew Taker would win but you did well at building suspense which is very very hard to do with Undertaker WM matches. I too hope this feud continues for at least one more PPV. But this was a perfect match. (5 c class stars out of 5)

Lesnar and Triple H. Again two guys who never had that epic encounter. Smart to have them work Mania. And if HHH is out of the title hunt, then this is the place he needs to be. The outside interference was expected and while it was over the top, you kept down any in the other matches so I worked. I don’t see this feud being over though…maybe a Hell in a Cell match to finish the job? Which like said above makes sense because that would keep everyone out of their business. I love the storyline progression here with Bischoff (which was fn hilarious and Tyson)….should continue to keep things interesting. (3 ½ c class stars out of 5)

RVD retains!?! Wow didn’t see that coming. I have nothing to say about this match but bravo my man. You keep proving why you write the best BTB. (4 c class stars out of 5) Edge continues to be denied his destiny which I love. He waits that long and it doesn’t come into light…but…

…It does for Randy Orton. LOL. See this was a shocker. This was a Wrestlemania movement my friend. That’s how you shake things up. This adding with the upcoming Draft should completely redesign the landscape of you BTB which is great because it keeps it fresh.

The main event. And a classic main event match. This is how you elevate a new superstar man. I knew Christian would walk out champion, but a part of me though you might pull a fast one just to be sneaky. Glad you didn’t. Christian with the belt at the end of the show is a classic…say it with me now…Wrestlemania moment. (4 c class stars out of 5)

I say Wrestlemania moment over and over because that’s what BTB wrestle mania cards need more of. And Wolfy you did it. You are the best of the best. You put a lot of hard work into this show and it is evident. While I think you’ve had better PPVs in the past, this one didn’t lack. It delivered everything you want from a WWE PPV> So glad I got a chance to catch up. Can’t wait until the next chapter.
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Old 07-13-2009, 02:05 PM   #2686 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

WrestleMania XXIII Feedback:


~ Like others have said, the Jazz legend singing “America The Beautiful” was a very nice touch. The opening video was suberb, as they always are from you, really playing off the fact that we’ve see so many great ‘Mania moments, and I’m sure we will see more tonight. J.R, Coach, Cole, and Tazz all seem ready to get this show going … and so am I!

Rey Mysterio/Straight Edge/Laree vs. MNM/Mr. Kennedy - Triple Jeopardy Match
I just want to say that I may never forgive you for not giving Kennedy his own entrance at the biggest show of the year. I know you’re not his biggest fan, but he’s obviously accomplished some things in this thread and he shouldn’t be reduced to entering with MNM. That being said, the white Hummer limo was a great touch and really gave us that memorable first entrance for ‘Mania. Surprised that you took the heel route with the opening contest, as a big face usually comes out to start the show, and that would have been Rey in this one. This match was obviously the best choice for the opener (and I did pick it, btw ) because it has all the elements to give us some exciting action to kick off the action. Always good to see these eight individuals break out into a brawl to open the match, as it really shows that they hate each other. I wasn’t very sure who was going to win this throughout, since really any of the people could have won the match for their team, as all the feuds were big enough to be the deciding fall. I liked the way that Kennedy’s character was developed even more in this match, as he continues with his “super serious” gimmick, actually hitting the Green Bay Plunge on a woman. The action really didn’t lag very much, as it seemed like tags were happening every thirty seconds, really making the time fly by. Punk also had the look of a future megastar, as he didn’t just hit the finisher that determined the outcome; he also took his fair share of shots and looked good because of them. Melina and Alexis didn’t have quite as much interaction as I would have liked to see, but their feud was obviously meant to be on the backburner. The only complaint (besides KK’s lack of an introduction) would have to be the end of the match, with way too many people going into and out of the ring. It just seemed a little unrealistic that Kennedy and Nitro would get back into the ring so quickly after being dumped, but it really made the finish go down like you wanted. Overall, a feel good moment to open WrestleMania is what we’ve come to expect, and that’s exactly what you gave us. Good way to kick off the proceedings. ***¼

~ Iron Mike is going to cancel out Austin? That’s funny, Wolfy. This is probably Triple H’s most “intense” feud in years, so there’s no doubt he’s going to bring his all tonight. Vince isn’t nearly as confident as he wants us to believe, imo.

Brent Albright vs. Batista - U.S. Championship Match
I really liked the feel that you’ve given this match, with Albright not looking confident AT ALL as he heads down to the ramp. Everyone in the world thinks that Batista is walking out with the belt, and that really plays into Brent going out of the ring countless times at the beginning of the match. I really like the way that you write Albright in the ring; he’s a heel because he sometimes cheats to win, but he is probably one of the smartest wrestlers in the company, not allowing himself to be caught by the powerhouse. Arn Anderson comes out onto the ramp and this was really the turning point of the match, with Brent now knowing what he needs to do in order to win this match. His focus changed completely after this moment, not really being scared anymore, but just doing what he does best. Batista really continued to show his dominance after clotheslining Albright on the outside, but I never really felt like Big Dave got into a groove, with Brent always finding a way to kill the momentum and get the match back at his pace. I kinda figured this match wouldn’t go as everyone thought after Albright hit the arm breaker. You talked about it so much that I just figured Batista couldn’t do very much with such a bad injury. While he wasn’t dominant, the champion continues to battle the much bigger challenger, keeping him on his heels for the majority of the contest. Spine buster was pretty cool, as Batista looked to be in a pretty bad spot before that maneuver. Albright really shows off the skills with some of his moves, and also his ability to not allow Batista to hit that deadly Batista Bomb. Dave looked close so many times, but it certainly wasn’t meant to be, with Brent somehow getting the schoolboy for the win! Really shocked to see it happen like this, mainly because everyone and their mother picked Albright to lose the belt. I am now convinced that Batista will never be a huge star in this thread. This is where I see him staying for as long as this thread continues. I guess it’s tough to make him into a big star because you don’t have the same situation the WWE did in 2005. That feud with Triple H was really the only way to get Batista where they wanted him, so there’s really nothing else you could do. Anyway, glad to see Albright continue his reign, as now it’s VERY intriguing to see who steps up as the next guy, since Batista should be out of the picture. Very good match that was really about the story being told, and that was beautifully done. ***

~ MITB I was really a great match that you had last year. This one doesn’t have the great build like last year’s did; imo, but it should still be a very entertaining contest.

~ LMAO at Josh getting the apple to the face. Just another solid promo between MVP and Carlito, and if they don’t feud after this match, I’d be shocked. I don’t see either man winning the briefcase, but you should tell a great story with them throughout.

Money in the Bank Ladder Match:
Lil’ Wayne rapping MVP’s theme was another great touch for the whole “New Orleans” thing you go going on, really shows how big of a star you wish to make MVP in the future. All the other entrances were pretty standard, and everyone attacks Umaga to get the match going! Even within the first sentences, a great story was told and it pertained to Randy Orton. He wants nothing more than to win a match at ‘Mania, and that’s why he let everyone else battle it out as he tried to get the sneaky win. Obviously it wasn’t going to happen, but it still showed just how much he wants to win this match. Also within the first few minutes, you show how much punishment is going to be dished out courtesy of Umaga, but the real question is whether or not he understands the concept of this match. This becomes rather obvious following his clearing of the ring, as he has no idea what to do! That allows the match to get back on track and now everyone gets involved again, with some great spots, including Orton’s RKO to Umaga and the Back Cracker from CCC to Finlay. I marked for what just happened to the little bastard! About damn time that he gets the fuck out of this thread … Finlay simply doesn’t need him for ANYTHING. Still, a very cool way to get the job done, and it feuls Finlay to be stupid enough to go after Umaga, wanting to get back at him. Also, the teamwork showed between Haas and Benjamin for that short stretch of time makes me wish that they were still a team, but it’s obvious that those days aren’t coming back soon. Now we really start to see people getting a run at the ‘case, and we also get to see just how spotty Paul London can be. He showed that he can take a ton of punishment and still come back strong for more. Loved the altercation between Haas and Benjamin following the moment when Charlie broke up the partnership. T-Bone off the ladder is always SICK. Carlito getting caught just holding the briefcase with nothing underneath him was a great replay of last year, and pretty much the same thing happens to him this time! Umaga is taken out of the match for good following that wicked fall onto the horizontal ladder … I guess this match went for him pretty much like I thought it would, tbh. He showed his sheer dominance, but didn’t really stand a chance of winning the briefcase. Carlito and MVP go through SIX TABLES! Is it just a coincidence that these two are rivals? I think not … perfect way for their feud to really kick into gear, blaming each other for the incident. Here comes my boy! London looks set to get the briefcase he deserves! DAMN IT RANDY! Orton takes out everyone else in the match who was still standing … AND UNHOOKS THE BRIEFCASE! I really didn’t see that coming at all. I thought he was too big of a star to win the match but I guess he now has that illusive first ‘Mania win. What a great match, really showing off the skills of all six men. I’m not sure where this Orton/MITB storyline is going to go in the near future, but he’s definitely going to do it in a shocking way. I loved this match more than I did last year, and that’s quite an accomplishment. ****

~ BRADSHAW! I guess I had completely forgotten about him since he’s been injured the entire time you’ve been writing in full. A very good promo from the ever-talented Wrestling God, and I really liked how he made it a point to call out the three men that “injured” him. I knew something was up when he started bad-mouthing the Hall of Fame … AND HERE’S HULK HOGAN! Pretty much what we expected, with the constant no-sells and then the Big Boot/Leg Drop combination. A very well-placed segment to break up the wrestling, and giving us a great WrestleMania Moment.

~ Perfect way to show the differences between the three men in the WWE Title match later. RVD is just relaxed as always, Y2J is confident, and Edge is freaking out as always. Should be a fantastic match between these three very talented studs.

Kid Kash vs. Brian Kendrick - Cruiserweight Championship Match:
As young pointed out, this is a very tough placement in the show for this one. Having to follow MITB and then the selfish beat down by Hogan, the crowd really isn’t going to be into a match between cruiserweights. Interesting way to start the match, as I figured that Kash would just go right at Kendrick and look for a quick win, as that’s really how his entire title reign has gone. But I’m glad that you started off the match the way you did, because that really gave the crowd a chance to get into it, realizing just how awesome these two are. Kash gains the early advantage, really working over BK on the outside, putting his stamp on the match very early in the contest. He’s not giving up this belt without Kendrick suffering. But Spanky comes back just like he always does, using his great quickness to frustrate Kash and get the match back to even. More action on the outside was good, especially since Kendrick was the man on the attack this time. CROSSBODY INTO A SLAM SOUNDED SICK, tbh. Turned the match around completely and even though Kash didn’t get the pin, it showed that he’s not done year. Another move on the outside to put Kash back into control, solidifying him in the match again. Reversals galore before Kid tries to cheat in order to win … but the referee catches him! I love when that happens to heels, it just makes them so mad that they didn’t get away with something. Superplex with cruisers is always the way to go, as it makes the move look just that much cooler, imo. Even more action outside the ring, as Kash shows just how he easy he is to hate, as I loved the way he pissed off the fans. Kash makes the crucial mistake, allowing Kendrick to roll out of the way of the moonsault, with Brian going back on the attack. Perfect way to end the match, making it look like Kash might somehow hit the Dead Level and retain, but Kendrick hits SLICED BREAD! NEW CHAMPION~! Great way for BK to finally get his hands on some singles gold, winning it on the biggest stage in wrestling. Obviously this feud will continue, as I can see some great matches between these two. With a PPV like Judgment Day coming up, I see these two getting much more time. I know you said this match would suffer due to time, and that’s all the more reason we should be getting a rematch. Still, great match to have the Title change hands on. ***

~ Your drafts are always top-notch. I expect this one to be no different.

~ Pretty shocking to see you have an interview with Bret Hart, as I thought he’d simply come out with the rest of the Hall of Fame people. But this was a perfect way to get Kurt Angle more attention ahead of his monumental match with ‘Taker. Bret’s part was good, but this was just here for Angle to talk about not letting the occasion beat him like it did last year. Angle has all the confidence in the world … and that’s why I see his night ending badly.

America’s Most Wanted vs. Hardy Boys - WWE Tag Team Championship Match:
Now, that’s what I’m talking about, we get some action before the actual match gets underway, with Storm and Harris jumping the Hardys after coming through the crowd! That already made this match more exciting than the build has been, imo. About time we saw some passion from these four guys. Not too happy to see Matt and Jeff bounce back so quickly, as I would have liked to see AMW go into the actual match already dominating. But either way, we get this one started, and we have our first good WWE Tag Team Championship match in a long time. Match starts off pretty much as was expected, with both teams sharing the advantage in short spurts, as the Hardys always play by the rules and AMW never do. Some very good action, with the champions not allowing Matt and Jeff to really get rolling in the early going, keeping the eager champions very much at bay. SIDE EFFECT! Pretty early in the match to see that move hit, but it doesn’t end the match, with Storm saving the match and the titles. Now we get that classic Hardy Boys offense, with them finally getting onto a good roll and really going at the champions. Double leg drop off the top rope seemed like it’d be pretty cool, but that still isn’t enough for them to grab the belts. Now Matt is really isolated for a very long time, not even able to get Jeff into the ring, even after he tagged him! You really showed just how desperately AMW wanted to hold onto the belts, doing everything in their power to keep Matt down and not allow Jeff to come into the match. The reversal out of the Death Sentence made me think that Matt was finally going to get rolling, but that all goes out the window when he falls victim to the Catatonic. Double DDT finally gives him enough time … as Jeff comes storming in! The younger Hardy really rolls through the champions, looking to have the match won. TWIST OF FATE! SWANTON! NEW TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS! NO! Harris pulls out the referee, giving Storm the title belt in the process, and AMW RETAINS!? After what happened earlier in the night with Albright getting a win against Batista, I figured he’d be the only SD heel to retain his gold. But I can say this was an even more shocking result, as I really didn’t see AMW winning. As I said in my predictions, this should make them the biggest heel team in the company, even though they got it done under shady circumstances. I see one of two things happening to the Hardys. They either stick together and win the belts in the next two months … or they win them this week on SD, before one of them gets shipped to Raw. I just didn’t see this reunion happening without a title run, even if it’s only for three days. A very good match here, with the shocking result that ‘Mania is all about. Very interested to see where this goes from here. ***½

~ Assuming that you make it to SummerSlam … it’s going to be a hell of an event. “Summer Tour” is also a pretty sweet idea.

~ Kind of a strange promo for Orton after winning the MITB. I remember you saying that the New Wave is going to have a much bigger role after WM23 … and that is obviously what he’s talking about. Interested to see what that is going to be…

Mick Foley vs. Shawn Michaels - Unsanctioned Match:
Quite the VP to hype up this bad boy, with it being probably the best put together one that I’ve read from you. The objectives of both men are just so different that it makes for such a great story. Foley’s ready to have his ‘Mania moment … and Michaels wants to just do what he does every year. The entrances of both men just show how different they are heading into this match, as we get the eerie one by Foley, using the barbed wire in the process, as he’s completely obsessed with what he could do tonight. And then we have Michaels, always calm and collected, just walking into another big match. I loved how Foley waited for the bell, because it’s obvious that Michaels has NO idea what to expect in this one. Love the way that you just pull a 180 to start this thing, with a traditional feeling out to start the contest, complete with lock-ups and everything. This is obviously not what Shawn Michaels thought he’d be doing at this early part of the match. Eventually Foley gets right down to it and goes after Michaels, and I really liked how the barbed wire was used early on, with the fans waiting to see someone finally go into it. I think that the match really go going when Mick put the mask on Shawn, pretty much symbolically slapping himself around the ring, trying to exorcise his demons. That beatdown actually on much longer than I anticipated with Shawn getting slapped around the ring, as Mick really looks like he is going to win this thing. He’s just got that extra bit of fire, imo. FOLEY GOES INTO THE BARBED WIRE! We knew that Mick was going to put his body through hell tonight, and it’s great to see it starting so early. Now Michaels shows his merciless side, just going to town with some wicked chair shots to the Hardcore Legend, absolutely destroying Foley with the chair. Mick comes back by tossing Michaels over the announce table, and now this thing is really getting brutal, with Foley pulling out the 2X4! MICHAELS MISSES THE ELBOW OFF THE LADDER! THAT NEVER HAPPENS! Mick comes back strong, as you are really putting him on the same level as Michaels, and he ends the assault with a brutal shot with the 2X4! Shawn is one of the best bleeders in the company, and that may become his future, with Foley busting out the tacks! Foley continues the domination and then goes through some more old school moves before SWEET SHIN MUSIC! Glad that you waited so long to have a cover, showing how much these two want to inflict pain on each other. Mandible Claw! But then a 2X4 to Foley! Michaels FINALLY shows some life, getting himself back into this brutal match. I loved the exchange between the two when they both wanted to send the other onto the tacks, really creating a lot of drama … BEFORE SWEET CHIN MUSIC SENDS FOLEY ONTO THEM! THEN HBK RISKS HIS OWN BODY AND GOES ONTO THEM TOO! Now we get another standoff, waiting to see who goes onto the table … AND OF COURSE IT’S FOLEY! AND THEN HE COMES BACK FOR MORE! HE WANTS SHAWN TO END THE MATCH! Low blow was pretty much expected, with Mick baiting Shanw into that one, getting back on the offensive. Shawn stays alive and then he destroys Mick with SWEET CHIN MUSIC! KICK OUT! I like that Mick kicked out of that, keeping the match alive, but I really didn’t want to see Sweet Chin Music again for the win that soon. Thought Foley would have another short run, getting a near fall. Complaining aside, a truly tremendous match that showed just how much these two can still go. Foley now has his ‘Mania moment, even though he didn’t win the match, but he certainly shined brighter than HBK, imo. The thank you to the fans was great, and I’d be shocked if we see either of these two before the summer. They truly went through hell tonight, and it was great to read. ****½

~ HOF inductees are always a great addition to the biggest show of the year. Hitman > Hogan … should have been the final one inducted, imo.

Kurt Angle vs. The Undertaker:
Easily the most exciting feud that ‘Taker has had heading into ‘Mania in this thread. While the actual match last year was good, the feud with Jericho heading into the big dance seemed rather rushed, and even though the feud continued after WM22, it just didn’t feel all that “special”. But now we’ve seen these two at each other’s throats since Survivor Series, with Angle dominating ‘Taker more than anyone we’ve ever seen. The VP did a great showing just what this feud is all about, as Angle has talked so much about not letting the occasion get to him this year, and all he’s focused on is beating ‘Taker in the ring. Entrances of both men were pretty cool, with Angle as cool as can be, while ‘Taker has probably his most elaborate entrance ever. Guess the time for talking is truly over, and now it’s time to get this thing going. A pretty sweet opening sequence between these two, with both so good that no one can get a clean shot in. Loved the belly-to-belly this early in the contest, really showing how hyped up and determined Angle is. This match is really getting heated in the early going, with the action on the outside, including the Leg Drop on the apron seemingly happening much sooner than usual. Angle was pretty dominating on the outside before breaking the action right back into the ring, looking to continue the damage, but isn’t able to, as ‘Taker comes back in impressive fashion, really working over the arm of Angle, targeting a specific part of his body for the first time in the match. Thought ‘Taker was going to hit Old School there, but we all know that Angle can counter into some amazing things, and the German with a bridge was pretty sweet. The trio of German to ‘Taker? Pretty shocked to see that happened, but you acknowledged how it would look with the much smaller Angle as the aggressor. Kurt continues to dominate this match, really pulling out all of the stops, as the Figure Four around the ringpost was a great way to show that he isn’t afraid to play dirty, just breaking the hold as the referee is about to reach five. Thought you got a little clothesline-happy with this part, as it seemed like an unusual amount for ‘Taker to do, but I guess that’s what you have to write sometimes. CHOKESLAM - but Angle counters it … before ‘Taker hits the running DDT! Knew it wasn’t going to end the match, but it was a phenomenal way for the Deadman to get back into the match. Love when ‘Taker does the plancha onto the outside, as it seems like he is only saving that for ‘Mania. Angle Slam into the ringpost sounded pretty sick, but we all knew that ‘Taker was kicking out. I see that as the first of MANY really close calls for the undefeated ‘Mania legend. After a little offense from ‘Taker we get the first really exceptional move of the match … ANGLE SLAM FROM THE TOP! And ‘Taker gets the ropes! Angle pulls out the moonsault!? You know that he wants the win when he’s willing to pull out THAT. CHOKESLAM OFF THE TOP! AND ANGLE GETS HIS FOOT ON THE ROPE TOO! Thought it was pushing it with two finishers off the top rope in back to back fashion, but I guess this means we’re nearing the end of the match. After another close fall by Angle … ANKLE LOCK! Thought ‘Taker might be done here, but he SOMEHOW manages to reach the ropes, forcing Angle to release the deadly submission. CHOKESLAM AND TOMBSTONE! BUT ANGLE KICKS OUT! I don’t remember seeing anyone do that until Batista did during their 2007 feud, so this would be quite the accomplishment at this time. ANKLE LOCK AGAIN … BUT THE TRIANGLE CHOKE IS LOCKED IN! AND ANGLE TAPS! THE STREAK IS STILL GOING! Damn, that was the best effort I’ve ever read when making someone look so close to breaking the streak. As many have said, ‘Taker never really looked like he’d lose this match, not with the incredible build that Angle was given heading into the match. But the aftermath was truly shocking, with ‘Taker not even having enough left in the tank to get up and celebrate, with the druids CARRYING HIM OFF? This can’t truly be the end of him in this thread? Thought he’d have more time, but I guess that Angle can build off that by saying he’s the reason ‘Taker is gone. If that is the case, then this is a phenomenal match to send ‘Taker off with, as he was truly sensational. One of the best that I’ve ever read from you. ****½

~ Backlash, should you continue this thread, will probably be epic. I remember last year’s produced some shocking results, with all the titles on Raw changing hands.

Brock Lesnar vs. Triple H - Five Years in the Making:
Probably my favorite feud heading into this epic show, with a great video package to boot. Really showed just how much has happened between these two in a relatively short time of five weeks. Only part that I didn’t understand was why Heyman voiced over the part when Lesnar was getting owned. Really didn’t seem all that appropriate, as it might have been better with just all silence. The introduction of Triple H by his father-in-law was a fantastic touch, really showing just how many people Hunter has behind him. Good to see Stone Cold come out in between the two men, as Lesnar HAD to come out last, with the entire world pulling for him in this one. The build has been great and now the stage is set, let’s get the biggest match of the night (imo) underway. Match could not have started any better, with Triple H playing the arrogant, hated heel, and Brock playing the bad-ass superhuman wrestler that everyone’s behind. I thought the slap was gonna set Brock off, but then he just laughs and overpowers Triple H, tossing him around and then outside the ring, onto his entire entourage! Loved how Triple H just tried to end the match there, with Austin obviously not having any of it, grabbing The Game and tossing him back into the ring. Next part of the match was pretty solid, with the two just battling it out on their own, with no interference, and a few great moves from each guy, before Iron Mike gets into the match for the first time, causing Lesnar to miss Triple H! After Brock finally got back into the groove, it was amazing what he did to Tomko, grabbing him on the apron and then tossing him to the outside with the F-5! Gave us that very exciting “first big move” while also giving us a reason to get rid of Tomko. Very well done, my friend. Didn’t expect Triple H to hit the spinebuster so early, but it was obvious that Brock was going to get his shoulder up, there’s no way this is ending any time soon. Thought Triple H was really getting into a groove here, dominating Brock all around the ring, sending him into Austin and everything before he gets caught on the outside, and gets thrown into the ringpost! Some more quick offense by Trips after that, but Lesnar has the last word in the exchange, grabbing him and nailing a tremendous belly-to-belly! This is when the match really started to get great, the countless counters and some big moves were hit, with these two really going at it. My favorite was the counter out of the F-5 before Triple H hit the neckbreaker. But Brock gets another chance, hitting the F-5 for a huge two count, after Vince grabs Trips’ foot and puts it on the rope! Knew we’d eventually see Vince get himself involved, and it really was at the most opportune time. The chase between Brock, Vince and Austin was pretty good, with the wig going into the crowd! Marked for the Lesnar Powerbomb, tbh, but that bitch had to get involved and pull the referee from the ring! Now things just get way too out of hand, with Triple H using anything in his possession, even hitting Lesnar with the sledgehammer! BISCHOFF IS THE NEW REFEREE!? AND HE HAS BALLS! WAY TO HAVE HIM TURN! Seriously, that was pretty sweet to see. I really hope that you just don’t fire him, because I think he can be a very interesting part of this great storyline. Anyway, back to the match, it was pretty obvious he’d get owned after that turned but still, totally worth it. Now Shane makes the count … but Austin nails him after the Pedigree! Austin begins to dominate … and THEN TYSON TURNS! THE MCMAHON FAMILY EMPIRE IS LOSING EVERYONE! Pretty sweet that Triple H actually had some credibility finally, as he actually kicks out of the F-5, with Austin almost making the final count. Shane gets dumped with the finisher but then Trips hits the PEDIGREE! LESNAR GETS THE SHOULDER UP! AND THEN FINISHES IT WITH AN F-5! LESNAR WINS! This match was pretty much what I expected, with a ton of intereference before Brock eventually picked up the win. Plenty of twists along the way, but I was kinda disappointed a McMahon didn’t turn, but that could happen down the road. The toast between Brock and Austin was definitely something that’d happen at ‘Mania, so that was good to see. This feud is about to get much more interesting, with Bischoff no longer and ally. Hopefully Triple H and Lesnar get involved with the WWE title picture for a little while before going back to their own feud. Would love to see these two go at it inside Hell in a Cell at SummerSlam. Anyway, this was the perfect starting match for a feud that should go on all summer. Very well written, as there was many stories that needed to be told. ****¼

~ Desert Classic is a very nice tagline, hopefully you will be able to write it … as four ‘Manias would be a record impossible to break, imo.

Rob Van Dam vs. Chris Jericho vs. Edge - WWE Championship Match:
Didn’t really need the video package here, so I’m glad that you decided to leave it out. The entrances themselves and Cole and Tazz talking pretty much told the story for these three men. Van Dam has a calm and cool confidence about him, knowing that he has always gotten the job done even though he’s been the underdog. Jericho truly is the wildcard, having the most big match experience of the three, and we all know he can beat anyone at any time. And finally Edge, who I think screwed himself by actually announcing when he would cash in MITB, as he now has all the pressure in the world on him, needing to win this match in front of the entire world. Start of the match was perfect, with Edge taking out his aggression early, nailing Van Dam with the belt before the bell even rings! Loved the exchange between Edge and Jericho to start the match, really giving us some excitement after the match between Lesnar and Triple H, which certainly got the fans tired. Kind of surprised that Van Dam came back that quickly, but I guess he needs to get involved sometime. Pretty shocked that Edge and Jericho are gonna work together to try and beat RVD, but that obviously doesn’t last very long, as they go at it with each other, even though they did take RVD out again when he got back on the apron. I always love when Edge spears people off the ring apron, as RVD has certainly taken a beating early in this one, keeping him outside the ring for a very long time. EDGE USES THE WALLS OF JERICHO!? You know that it’s WrestleMania when wrestlers use other wrestlers’ finishers, but it really worked out well here, as it was too early for Edge to use his own signature submission. Edge gets in some more offense before RVD FINALLY comes back, taking out Edge and then getting both men on the outside with a plancha! Now it’s Jericho’s time to be beaten down, as he’s really not taken much damage throughout, as RVD gets a few near falls, including that very surprising sidewalk slam for a two count. Figured that something was coming when Edge finally came back into the ring and we really weren’t disappointed … as we get the Tower of DOOM~ move, with RVD and Jericho both being taken out! Loved the late kick outs from both men, really getting Edge even more pissed off! Now Van Dam is able to come back after that brutal powerbomb, with him really showing everything he has at his disposal off, getting a few near falls. WALLS OF JERICHO … BY JERICHO~! Finally get to see this and I loved how you had it play out, with RVD looking set to tap out … but then EDGE SAVES HIM! Some more fast action, with Edge going outside the ring, but then he ends up coming back in after what was the best spot of the match, the amazing CODEBREAKER off the top rope, and Edge nails the Spear on Jericho! And then he wants to pin RVD … BUT ROB KICKS OUT! AND EDGE THINKS HE’S WON! The match continues, with Van Dam suffering another big move, only for Edge to save him again! More fast action, and then a FIVE-STAR TO EDGE … BUT JERICHO BREAKS IT! I’ve thought this match would be over so many times, but everyone keeps saving everyone! WALLS OF JERICHO AGAIN … AND EDGE SAVES VAN DAM AGAIN, SPEARING JERICHO! Edge looks to do the same to Van Dam … but Rob moves … and HITS JERICHO WITH THE FIVE-STAR! RVD MAKES THE COVER … AND RETAINS! Shocking to see RVD win this one, tbh, as I thought FOR SURE that Edge was walking away with the gold. Guess you’ve really been full of surprises tonight, and this would have to be the top one. RVD’s fabulous run continues … AND EDGE RUINS THE CELEBRATION! Loved how much anger he showed there, and I think this was a very strange way to end the last Smackdown match. That is … until this happened… ****

Rob Van Dam vs. Randy Orton - WWE Championship Match:
RANDY ORTON!? I WAS SURE HE WOULDN’T BE ABLE TO WALK AFTER MITB! Truly shocking for him to come out now and it looked like MITB will be cashed in very quickly. RKO to Jericho was just for good measure, taking out the unsuccessful challenger, just as you said, to keep him out of the way. And now Randy hands the briefcase to the official and we’re underway! RKO right away! BUT VAN DAM KICKS OUT!? Still some fight left in the Champion, that is until ORTON PUNTS HIM SQUARE IN THE HEAD! PERFECT WAY FOR THIS AWESOME MOVE TO DEBUT, WITH ORTON BECOMING THE NEW WWE CHAMPION! Simply shocking stuff and I think that I figured out that Rob Van Dam is the one who was in violation of the wellness policy. It makes the most sense, imo. He was supposed to retain the belt tonight, but instead of giving it to Jericho or Edge and messing with future storylines, they decide to give the belt to Orton. Now RVD will be out for some time, giving a reason as to why he’ll be gone. I remember you saying that the New Wave was bound for big things after ‘Mania, and this is obviously the start. Truly shocking turn of events, and even though the match was only a minute long, we still get **** (for how shocking the entire segment was).

John Cena vs. Christian - World Heavyweight Championship Match:
After the final shots of both men, a very good video package to hype up this huge feud, as you’ve had some awesome packages all night, but this one showed just how much this feud has evolved in a very short period of time. The continued baiting of each man by the other, trying to show a chink in the armor of both men. The lines were all placed very well, showing that neither is really the heel, with Cena being closest as the traditional tweener. The entrances of both men were very well done, as I really liked the Cena one, using the idea that WWE had last year. Guess the time for talking is truly over, as we get this thing started! Loved the start of the match, with the two really taking their time and milking the occasion, as the dueling chants are always the way to go in a match of this much importance. The easy and soft offense lasted just long enough, before Christian claps the champ and now we are really ready to go! Glad to see them battling outside the ring, as the referee makes the obvious call and is going to let this thing keep going, no matter how long they stay outside the ring, not wanting the ‘Mania main event to end on a stupid double countout. Charging through the barricade would have been a very cool thing to see, as it gave them a passage into the fans, really making this match get out of hand. Finally, we get back into the ring and the match begins to unfold as we’d like to see, with both men jockeying for position, with the spot of the crossbody into the roll-through working out very well, as Cena almost stole the match. F-U THROUGH THE SPANISH ANNOUNCE TABLE! Shocked that the table wasn’t already broken, as I figured it was gone during the Foley-HBK match, but this was a perfect way to make it break, with a huge move hit OUTSIDE the ring. Of course Christian was going to kick out, but this was simply to get Cena in complete control of the match, getting another near fall before Christian almost shocks him with a roll-up! The spinebuster is always a nice surprise from Cena before we get the first HUGE move of the night on the inside of the ring, with Christian hitting a sick GUTBUSTER FROM THE TOP! That would be amazing to see, but Cena kicks out! This is when I really got into the match, as you did a great job with Christian in the driver’s seat, letting him dominate and then get John into the Sharpshooter! Christian needs a good submission and it would be awesome if this became that for him. No way Cena’s losing the belt now, but it was great that he struggled greatly before finally reaching the rope. That really played well into the next part of the match, as Cena isn’t able to handle Christian’s weight for the F-U, with CC getting another near fall! Finally, Cena gets back on the offensive, taking Christian down before hitting some of his moves of DOOM~, getting a few more close covers on the challenger. Missing the leg drop off the top is always great to see, as Christian looks to get back into the match, and Cena goes into the referee! UNPRETTIER … NO REFEREE! Loved how conflicted Christian was with the steel chair in hand, as we all knew that he didn’t want to cheat that way, but you still made it seem like there’d be a chance of it happening. FU OUT OF NOWHERE! KICK OUT! STF-U, just like the Sharpshooter, was used very well, with Christian using every fiber of his being to get to the bottom rope and then he finally does! A few reversals into pins really picked up the action, with Cena almost pinning Christian like he did to Orton last year! Cena goes into the ropes after that frantic exchange … and UNPRETTIER CONNECTS! CENA KICKS OUT! Thought the match was over there, but the action continues, with the two reversing each other for a brief moment before … UNPRETTIER AGAIN! CHRISTIAN IS THE NEW CHAMPION! Great to see this finally happen again for the now TWO-time World Champion, as it was a very long road back to the top of the wrestling world. The aftermath was pretty good, as the handshake never happened but Cena let CC have his moment in the sun. I think that Cena is on his way to turning heel very soon, as you’ve never really experimented with that in this thread. Perfect way for the show to close, with J.R. and Coach talking about the amazing night and Christian being hugged by his family. Really the only way that this show could end after such an amazing match, imo. ****½

~ Really liked how the final video package was done, as that’s always one of my favorite parts of the biggest show of the year. Guess we had a lot happen tonight, and you were able to fit everything in perfectly with the songs.

Final Thoughts:
Pretty much proved why you are probably going to be the greatest booker who ever lived. To get to three WrestleManias is never going to be touched, and you still don’t seem like you want to slow down. Like you said, this didn’t have all the glamour matches like last year’s show, but between the strong undercard, the five main events, and Orton cashing in MITB, I’ll actually say that I liked this show better. Also, the unpredictability of the main event really got me interested in this show, as last year everyone and their mother KNEW Benoit was going over Lesnar. All that said, I obviously can’t wait to see what you have planned next, especially with the draft. But take your time off and enjoy it, you certainly deserve it.
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Old 08-09-2009, 02:31 PM   #2687 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

Less than a week ago I was telling people I was thinking of ending this gig for good.

Lesson learned; don’t listen to what I say. I change my mind quite often.

Saying that, right now, I’m just not as motivated to book as I was with the run up to WrestleMania (which was supposed to be my swansong), but I’m hoping by getting on with it, I can rekindle my flagging interest. As of now, I’ve gotten Raw and Smackdown following WrestleMania written, but I’m only a third of the way through the next Raw. As some of you may know, I prefer to be ahead of shows, rather than writing a show, then posting when it’s ready, but as things progress, I may end up forgoing that long standing ritual and post shows as they become ready. For the most part, I’ll likely end up writing Smackdown in recap - at least every other week.

Now though, I’m going to set the date for the return show; August 24.

No guarantees as to how far I end up going; I’m just taking it one Pay Per View at a time. And the first one up is Backlash. I wont however be writing it in full. Seeing the (lack of) response for the effort Legend poured into his Backlash, it doesn’t seem worth it on the reward : effort ratio. Saying that, I’d like to thank everyone that read and posted comments on WrestleMania; it far exceeded my expectations, and I’m glad the general consensus was positive.

Anyway, for now- news and notes coming out of WrestleMania, and the PPV schedule…

***


Post Show WrestleMania News and Notes:


Early feeling coming out of WrestleMania is positive from all quarters, with the show delivering where it had to most; in the ring. Many eyes had been firmly on John Cena and Christian, with both men under enormous pressure to deliver, and many believe that they did enough to not only warrant the main event spotlight, but may have even stole the show. Going into the show, plans going forward seen the two men moving in opposite directions, but now, given the strength of their contest, many are pushing to strike while the iron is hot and go for the rematch immediately. Given the head honcho in creative over the last number of years has preferred slow burning angles, the request for a quick rematch might not be met though.


The main talking point, just hours before showtime, was the revelation that a major superstar had failed a wellness policy test over the weekend, which threw plans into chaos. Coming out of the event, the four main candidates would appear to be Jeff Hardy, Umaga, Batista and RVD. Many expected all four to be successful in their respective matches, and whilst RVD did retain the title, he now has a viable ‘out’ as it’s expected he will sell the head kick from Randy Orton for a number of weeks/months. Whilst the WWE is unlikely to announce the culprit, it should become clear this week on WWE television who the unknown superstar is, as the 30 day suspension is set to kick in with immediate effect.


It’s been said that NO ONE, including Randy Orton or Rob Van Dam, were aware of the plans for the shocking Money in the Bank cash in at WrestleMania. Some have speculated that Edge was legitimately furious as he came backstage following the incident, having been expecting to walk out of WrestleMania as champion. To see himself NOT win the title, and then watch as Randy Orton stole his opportunity, is said to have given Edge ‘a lot to think about’ in regard to his future with the company. Having been told twice already that ‘the time wasn’t right’ in September and December, some of his close allies are beginning to speculate that Edge doesn’t feel he has the backing of creative to lead the Smackdown brand.


With Randy Orton now the WWE Champion, speculation is mounting that the luke-warm at best ‘New Wave’ group could be disbanded. It’s expected that Orton will head to Smackdown with the title, and unless Nick Dinsmore, Ken Doane and Garrison Cade are drafted to Smackdown next week, the future of the group looks bleak.


Despite being on the losing side in the opening contest, Mister Kennedy is said to be the top priority in the aftermath of WrestleMania to be positioned as the next big star of the company. Vince McMahon has been unhappy with the treatment of the King of the Ring, and has made it clear that he wants to see Kennedy utilised in the best possible way.


Thankfully, there have been no serious injuries reported from the crazy Money in the Bank ladder match. Randy Orton experienced some shoulder pain following the match, but is said to be okay, whilst Shelton Benjamin could need a couple of weeks to recover, after complaining of a tight hamstring after the match. The Little Bastard though is expected to be released tomorrow (along with a host of other names) and this was likely to be his send off.


Hopes are high that Brian Kendrick will be the man to fill the void left by Paul London in the Cruiserweight division, since the Golden Boy moved onward and upward. The division has stagnated in recent months, but now, the division is set to be built around Kendrick, in the hope he will catch on, and capture the imagination and bring more spotlight onto the title.


Rumours have suggested that Mick Foley and Shawn Michaels were both delighted with how their Non-Sanctioned match turned out. Foley isn’t expected to return anytime in the near future, having already fulfilled his contracted appearance quota for this year.


One surprise coming out of the show was the shock appearance of JBL. In the lead up to the event, there had been no sightings of Layfield, nor was an appearance rumoured. However, despite his appearance, JBL was said to be rather downhearted about his future, claiming that he has maybe ‘two or three’ big matches left in him, after corrective surgery on an old back injury was not a success. Given his in ring confrontation with Hulk Hogan at the show, one of those big matches could well be against the legendary Hall of Famer, especially with the weakened state of the Smackdown roster currently.


Until the news of who failed the wellness policy test, it’s unknown as to what the reasoning would be that both Americas Most Wanted and Brent Albright went over respectively at tonight’s show. It’s likely that creative felt AMW would benefit more from keeping the belts, rather than switching back and forth quickly with the Hardy Boys, but it’s hard to tell why Albright remained U.S Champion - and why he was put over Batista cleanly.


The face turn from Eric Bischoff was something that had been in the pipeline for the last few months, but had been kept neatly under wraps. Despite turning on the McMahons, it’s not fully confirmed whether Eric Bischoff will now be an out and out face, as Bischoff himself has expressed a desire to remain true to his character.


Everyone involved in the entire Lesnar / Triple H angle are said to be delighted with how things turned out tonight, after the strong build up leading into the show. Given the outcome of events, it’s unlikely the angle will be stopped just yet, but Triple H has expressed concerns that the feud at this point seems to have moved on from behind about him and Brock Lesnar, and unless plans change, he’s unwilling to go further with the feud.


One other huge piece of news coming out of WrestleMania, was the aftermath of the Undertaker | Angle match. Whilst nothing is confirmed, speculation is mounting that the aftermath was set up for Taker to use as a ‘retirement’ angle. The Phenom is definitely taking time off, and it would appear he is contemplating retirement, but leaving the door open to a later return later this year.


It’s been no secret that a number of superstars are set to take extended breaks this summer, with RVD and Chris Jericho both set to be away for a number of months, and now, Shawn Michaels has been making noises about needing time off. HBK is carrying a number of niggling injuries, and is said to be in need of some much needed R&R. With those three, AND The Undertaker all unlikely to be available this summer, top tier talent on both rosters are likely to be significantly weakened for the summer tour.


On top of that, there has been talk that Brock Lesnar has requested four to six weeks off too, also in a bid to clear up a number of nagging injuries. It’s expected that Lesnar could either have to wait until after the summer, or perhaps could get his time off in the next month, as management are determined to make sure they have as many top drawer names available for the Summer Tour as possible.


A massive number of releases are expected to be announced tomorrow before Raw goes on the air. There are many concerned superstars currently, who are fully aware that their appearance at this WrestleMania could wind up being their last one.


***


---


PPV Schedule:


April 22 | WWE Backlash | Montreal, Quebec

May 20 | WWE Judgment Day | Miami, Florida
June 17 | WWE Bad Blood | Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
July 8 | WWE Great American Bash | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
August 19 | WWE Summer Slam | London, England
September 16 | WWE Cyber Sunday | Dallas, Texas
October 14 | WWE Nemesis | Little Rock, Arkansas
November 18 | WWE Survivor Series | Los Angeles, California
December 9 | WWE Armageddon | Cleveland, Ohio
January 20 | WWE Royal Rumble | Las Vegas, Nevada
February 17 | WWE Super Brawl | Charlotte, North Carolina
March 30 | WWE WrestleMania 24 | Phoenix, Arizona


*Red= Raw, Blue= Smackdown, Any other colour= Co-Brand*


Other Notable Events:


March 26 | Annual WWE Draft | Greensboro, North Carolina

June 23 | Saturday Nights Main Event; Clash of the Champions | Memphis, Tennessee
July 16 - August 31 | WWE Summer Tour | Worldwide
September 28 | WWE Smackdown Season Premiere | Washington, DC
October TBA | WWE Raw Season Premiere | Denver, Colorado
November 10 | Saturday Nights Main Event | Portland, Oregon
December 10 | WWE Raw; 15th Anniversary | San Francisco, California


***


That’ll just about do it for now, my next post will be the Raw preview, and the laundry list of releases.
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Old 08-09-2009, 03:07 PM   #2688 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

Knew that little talk on MSN would work.

The fact that this thread is still going after a third WrestleMania is epic tbf. I still maintain my belief that you not coming number one on the Mega Standings thanks to WM23 is a travesty, btw. Also, just so you know, my lazy arse WILL get your WrestleMania feedback complete and when it is done, it'll be worth it, and not just some generic recapping of the whole fucking event.

The departure of some main event talent should see the rise of some upper midcarders, so it will be interesting to see how you build the chosen characters and mould them into main event material. I'll be upset to see The Phenom finally retire though.

Looking forward to RAW.
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Old 08-09-2009, 03:08 PM   #2689 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

I'm looking forward to the return. Looks like the brands are going to be drained of a LOT of talent. It gives a chance for a lot of the younger stars to step up. I suspect that's what you have in mind.
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Old 08-10-2009, 01:41 AM   #2690 (permalink)
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Default Re: Being The Booker

Thank God, Buddha, Allah and whoever else there is that you're sticking around (not that I ever knew you considered leaving ). The section is MUCH better off with you around.

As for the news, Cena and Christian certainly did deliver. While I'm glad to see there is a rematch being considered, holding off on it for awhile is a good idea. I generally don't like when Backlash is just full of WrestleMania rematches, as it just feels a bit cheap and lazy. Hopefully we may see a long awaited rematch at SummerSlam, which would be epic.

Hopefully RVD isn't the man suspended, though as you yourself said, he is written out already, so it may be him. I could also see it being Batista though after his loss to Brent Albright, though with the 'mystery' surrounding him putting Albright over, I see him as being an outside chance on the laundry list of releases.

Orton over to SmackDown! should be interesting. While I like all of the guys involved in New Wave, I could understand it being disbanded. I wouldn't mind seeing just one of the guys (Doane would be my personal fave) heading across with Orton, though I'm not too fussed.

Seems like there's a possibility of losing a lot of talent over the coming months. Hopefully Edge stays with the company, as he's one guy you can really utilise to make SmackDown! as good as possible. With Van Dam, Jericho, 'Taker (possibly permanently), Lesnar and Shawn Michaels all looking to take time off we're set for a development period. Kennedy seems to be the guy who will move forward the fastest as you yourself said, though with Albright having being US Champion for this long (even if it was due to some luck), I could see him heading up the card soon too, with the returning JBL also playing a main event role for whatever time he has left. Not so sure on who else will step up, but I'm definitely excited to see it.

Glad to see the cruiserweight division will be built back up, as really it's the only thing lacking. How well you can use Kendrick as champion is yet to be seen, though I think he could do a pretty good job as the face of the division.

Bischoff as a badass face as well, plz. I'd love it.

I'm really looking forward to seeing this moving along soon, and can't wait to see the releases/preview for RAW.
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