1. Sleeping on The Lion of Bulgaria
The land of alternative hasn’t been sort to Rusev.
WWE SmackDown has pushed Bray Wyatt and Jinder Mahal to world champion standing. It’s been the place the place James Ellsworth went from unknown to eccentric sideshow, the place Breezango discovered its groove as a comedy act and The Usos have been allowed to blossom as trash-talking bullies.
Rusev has a far much less fruitful expertise with the blue model. His tenure on SmackDown has been extra of the identical of what he was experiencing on Raw, specifically being undervalued.
On Tuesday’s SmackDown, The Bulgarian Brute was one win away from becoming a member of the model’s Survivor Series crew. But once more he fell to Randy Orton. And now he is on the surface trying in at one of many greatest pay-per-views of the 12 months.
It solely takes one…
@RusevBUL will NOT be becoming a member of the #SDLive Men’s #SurvivorSeries crew. @RandyOrton https://t.co/aW3s22LznR
After Rusev’s newest loss, ProfessionalWrestling.web columnist Jake Barnett lamented: “I hope they begin utilizing him higher quickly.”
There’s little purpose to badume that can occur. WWE hasn’t made The Super Athlete a precedence. The firm has chosen to disregard his charisma, his partaking, hard-hitting ring fashion and potential.
During the summer season, WWE started an angle the place Rusev demanded a title shot, saying he would not wrestle for SmackDown in any other case. Nothing got here of it.
He’s had only a few feuds to work with. And his newest one with Randy Orton hasn’t been in the slightest degree artistic.
Rather than painting him as an awesome pressure, WWE has made him a pushover too usually.
Randy Orton towers over a fallen Rusev.Credit: WWE.com
Rusev is Three-Eight since his return in July, together with three losses in three tries at PPVs, per CageMatch.web. He fell to Orton in 10 seconds at SummerSlam. And he is misplaced six straight tag crew matches relationship again to his time on Raw.
In early October, Josh Isenberg of Wrestling Inc was amongst these scratching their heads about Rusev’s reserving:
Josh Isenberg @JoshIsenbergFour
#IsenbergReacts on #SDLive… I don’t get what they’re doing with Rusev. Too gifted of a man to be wasted and Orton ought to be on RAW
That sentiment nonetheless holds true a month later.
Rusev is a larger-than-life determine. He could be humorous or ferocious, a beast pounding on a lesser man or charismatic scoundrel. He’s proven he ought to be a key a part of the plan for the New Era. But that has but to be how WWE treats him.
The Lion of Bulgaria is an afterthought, a midcarder WWE has no clear plan for, a race automobile getting used for a paper route.
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2. Cesaro, Tag Team Champion
The King of Swing positive is aware of his manner round a tag crew match.
Cesaro is as soon as once more a tag crew titleholder after he and Sheamus defeated Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose on Monday’s Raw. Per CageMatch.web, this marked his fourth time to say the Raw Tag Team Championship.
The Swiss Cyborg received the Raw tag titles in 2015, 2016 and now twice in 2017.
In addition, Cesaro has received tag crew gold for Ring of Honor, Combat Zone Wrestling, Germany’s Westside Xtreme Wrestling, Chikara and even Juggalo Championship Wrestling. In all, he has 16 whole tag title reigns on his resume.
Some will bemoan the truth that Cesaro is not within the hunt for the Universal Championship or pushed as a singles star, however maybe he was born to be an awesome tag crew specialist.
Three. Throwback Video of the Week: James Ellsworth
James Ellsworth’s collision with Becky Lynch on Tuesday’s SmackDown wasn’t his first foray into intergender wrestling.
In 2008, Ellsworth (then Jimmy Dream) battled Rebecca Payne in a hardcore match for Undisputed Championship Wrestling. The bout advised a way more violent and bloody model of the story he advised with Lynch.
(Note: Contains graphic footage.)
Ellsworth positive makes getting his bad kicked a satisfying expertise for the viewers. And he is been honing that craft for 15 years.
Four. Bring on the Bruiserweight
WWE wants to seek out extra methods to showcase Pete Dunne.
The Bruiserweight made his first look on Raw this Monday and seemed like an absolute star. He had the group roaring as he smashed Enzo Amore within the jaw.
Dunne has an excessive amount of potential to be restricted to the United Kingdom division. He’s larger than 205 Live. He belongs on a stage larger than NXT.
A snarling pit bull with world-clbad technical talent, Dunne is a pleasure to look at within the ring. Any good listing of 2017’s prime WWE matches have to incorporate his two bouts towards Tyler Bate. Throw in his presence and nice sense of his persona at solely 23 years previous and it is clear The Bruiserweight’s ceiling is mighty excessive.
The Birmingham bruiser must be in all places: the Intercontinental Championship image, SmackDown, SummerSlam.
5. There’s Only One Brother Love
Diddy discovered how rapidly the wrestling world can pounce.
The rapper and producer wished to undertake a brand new alias. After all of the adjustments to his stage title he has made, this wasn’t a shock. But his alternative of Brother Love irked those that watched Bruce Prichard play a red-faced, high-pitched WWE character of the identical title.
In an interview with TMZ Sports, Prichard welcomed Diddy to come back at him in a hoop:
TMZ Sports @TMZ_Sports
WWE’s ‘Brother Love’ Wants to Whoop Diddy Over Nickname Drama https://t.co/xgxpxMqdNC
If Diddy is brainstorming different monikers, somebody please inform him to avoid Hot Stuff, The People’s Champion, The Beast from the East, and many others.
6. Josh “Nature Boy” Reddick
The Houston Astros’ celebration of the franchise’s first World Series win had a definite WWE aptitude to it.
Outfielder Josh Reddick sauntered across the championship parade carrying a WWE Championship. And he emulated Ric Flair whereas addressing the group:
WOOOOOO! @ActualJoshReddick was feeling like a CHAMPION when he channeled @RicFlairNatrBoy on the #AstrosParade! https://t.co/wOEm7F2JDq
Reddick saluted the squared circle with all of the world watching him. You must surprise what number of baseball followers unfamiliar with wrestling had no concept what he was doing throughout that Flair tribute.
7. The Reign of The Maharaja
Jinder Mahal is now not in possession of the WWE Championship due to AJ Styles. The Phenomenal One dethroned him on Tuesday in Manchester, England.
The Maharaja, although, was champ for an excellent whereas. As seen on WWE.com, Mahal’s reign ended after 170 days.
The #ModernDayMaharaja @JinderMahal is FAMISHED and prepared for his “appetizer” in @AJStylesOrg! #SDLive @SinghBrosWWE https://t.co/j8ruyfolXd
That’s the longest reign since Seth Rollins in 2015. It is the fourth-longest reign this decade behind CM Punk, Brock Lesnar and Rollins.
And Mahal held the WWE title longer than Roman Reigns did in three mixed reigns, longer than Daniel Bryan’s whole time as champ.
The Mahal experiment was no fleeting one. As badly because it bombed, WWE confirmed uncommon persistence and gave the previous 3MB member each likelihood to show himself. That’s one thing that must be repeated with others.
Eight. Underrated Flair Hits
Nature Boy, ESPN’s 30 for 30 particular on Ric Flair, highlighted a lot of the 16-time champ’s profession highlights. It aired an excellent variety of his most interesting promos. But its operating time did not permit it absolutely exhibit Flair’s in-ring artistry.
For these trying to dig deeper into The Nature Boy’s ring resume, the next are high-quality bouts that do not get talked about practically as a lot as his masterpieces towards Ricky Steamboat, Terry Funk and others:
It speaks to Flair’s longevity and excellence that he was killing it in 1985, thriving within the ’90s and nonetheless acting at a excessive stage a decade later.
9. Big Moment for Team Raw’s Final Member
In an underwhelming transfer, Raw normal supervisor Kurt Angle named Jason Jordan as the ultimate member of the crimson model’s Survivor Series crew.
In a match that additionally options Randy Orton, Braun Strowman, John Cena, Shane McMahon and Finn Balor, Jordan stands out. He’s surrounded by future Hall of Famers and all-stars with larger, louder following.
But it is on this stage amongst all these names that Jordan can pressure of us to concentrate to him.
This might be a significant alternative for the rising star. If he can flourish on the PPV and be among the many most compelling figures within the bout, individuals will take discover. If he rattles off a lot of eliminations or turns into the only survivor, the match might be one followers look again on as key to his rise.
And if he activates his father and Raw crew captain Angle, he’ll be the star of essentially the most talked about second on the occasion.
10. Graves on Morgan
Corey Graves vs. Piers Morgan is the feud none of us noticed coming.
The WWE commentator made reference to Morgan on Monday’s Raw, evaluating how little Enzo Amore is favored in England to how of us really feel about the British TV persona.
Morgan took exception and Graves clapped again:
Corey Graves @WWEGraves
I’m sorry, I meant no disrespect. I had no concept who you have been. I merely googled “most hated man in England.”
Welcome to relevance although! https://t.co/g0R8dXQs6m
Count this among the many strangest interactions involving the WWE world this 12 months. Knowing WWE, Morgan will ultimately seem on Raw and commerce photographs with Graves on the air.
The sensible cash is on the voice of Raw to come back out on prime.