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Showing posts from September, 2015

The Smark Henry Review of PWR Renaissance

Last Saturday, the Philippine Wrestling Revolution held PWR Renaissance. Once again, we trooped back to the Makati Square Arena to see our favorite Pinoy wrestlers in action, and we’ve got a couple of thoughts on how the show went down. Without further ado, let’s get this review started!

Walang Forever

PWR Renaissance kicked off with four men returning to tag team action, with the Fighters 4 Hire taking on Dual Shock in a 2-Out-Of-3-Falls tag match. This was a good chance for both teams to further build on the identities they’ve established – Rosales, for example, once again showed his vicious suplex/F-5 offense, while SANDATA showed that he’s not just all flash and flight as he locked in some nice submissions. Both teams traded falls to force a third count, and some miscommunication between Peter Versoza and SANDATA allowed Rosales to pick up the win with an F-5.

The big story here was the post-match fallout between Peter Versoza and SANDATA, with Versoza announcing that Dual S…

The Smark Henry RAW Report (9/28/15): A Funky Fresh Change Of Pace

There’s something genuinely amusing about the way WWE has been going about this angle involving Kane and his multiple personalities. Last week left me wondering whether or not they pulled the trigger too quickly on the reveal that there were no alter egos, just one Kane. This week on RAW, it seems as if they’re still pushing the duality between Corporate Kane and Demon Kane.
For starters, I find the presence of Ashley, the HR officer, particularly hilarious. I mean, with all of the bullshit that virtually all of the characters go through on a weekly basis, all it took was an “anonymous tip” from Seth Rollins, obviously, to make the Authority realize that they’ve fostered an “unsafe working environment” for someone. 
And then there was the bit where Corporate Kane presented Rollins with a gift in a box. It wasn’t until someone on Reddit pointed it out when it hit me that it was a subtle yet brilliant reference to the movie, Se7en, particularly that climactic scene where Brad Pitt’s Detec…

The Grapevine (9/30/15): Was Hornswoggle Framed?

Good morning, everyone! Welcome to the Grapevine, where we round up the (technically unconfirmed) rumors from the wild world of pro wrestling that you may have missed over the evening.

A lot of news coming out, especially with the recent Wellness Policy violation:

Could Hornswoggle's violation have been trumped? A rumor going around is that Hornswoggle (nee Dylan Postl), who was announced to have violated the WWE Wellness Program and been suspended for 30 days, did not actually test positive for any banned substances. Apparently, they did a random urine test at his home (since he no longer goes to every WWE event) and he allegedly could not produce urine within three hours, leading the company to fail him. (Source: WrestlingInc)
We say: Something sounds fishy. We find it more than a little unusual that he couldn't pee at all in three hours, but we think we find it even more so that he would be taking a banned substance. Nothing is ever what it seems, and take everything you read—…

WWE RAW Results (9/28/15)

Roman Reigns seeks to end his saga with Bray Wyatt, one-on-one! Plus, Kane gets evaluated by HR!

John Cena's United States Open Challenge is back! The champ kicked off RAW, awaiting a new challenger for his title. And out came WWE Tag Team Champions The New Day! Stepping up on the trio's behalf? Xavier Woods!

1. United States Championship: John Cena defeated WWE Tag Team Champion Xavier Woods (w/ co-champions Big E and Kofi Kingston) via DQ
- Kofi and Big E broke Cena's STF submission hold on Woods, causing the DQ; Cena retained his title
- After the match, the trio ganged up on Cena until The Dudley Boyz made the save!

2. Six-man Tag Team Match: WWE Tag Team Champions The New Day def. The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray and D-Von Dudley) and US Champion John Cena
- Kingston pinned D-Von after a Trouble in Paradise

After the break, The Authority were shown backstage, conferring with HR personnel Ashley. Triple H and Stephanie McMahon referred the Kane "double-identity" issu…

SummerSlam Is Staying In New York

After rumors of heading back to Staples Center in Los Angeles next year, the WWE has revealed that SummerSlam is headed back to Brooklyn until 2017.
In a press release sent out today, the company announced that not only is the event itself coming back, but this year's full three-day event—including NXT TakeOver and RAW—is going to be a thing for the next two years, all at the Barclays Center.
New York City mayor Bill de Blasio comments on the announcement:
"We are thrilled to build on the success of the 2015 SummerSlam and welcome WWE back to Brooklyn in 2016 and 2017. Big events like SummerSlam help cement New York City's appeal as a dynamic, high-energy destination. We're thankful for WWE's commitment to Brooklyn, and look forward to a long partnership that benefits the City."
Our quick take: if anything at all, making SummerSlam weekend just as big, if not bigger than WrestleMania weekend—especially by giving it an iconic home in New York, WWE's origi…

WWE 2K16 Overall Ratings Revealed (P.S. Kevin Owens Says Thank You)

One of the more entertaining arguments that comes up whenever a new WWE game comes out is on the Overall Ratings assigned to each wrestler, which is the wrestling nerd equivalent of the age-old debate on who would win a showdown between the X-Men and the Avengers. (Spoiler: It's the X-Men, hands down)
One particularly sharp-eyed Redditor over at /r/SquaredCircle spotted a partial listing of wrestler ratings for the upcoming WWE 2K16 game in this recently-released video about the overhauled MyCareer mode.

We don't have a full listing of all wrestler Overall Ratings yet, but the names that did come out reveal an interesting hierarchy among the currently-known roster.

Some notable big names are missing—Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose, Randy Orton, Kane, Bray Wyatt, and the Big Show are the notably MIA talents from the active roster—but it's fascinating how things are shaping up so far.

Some people may hate how John Cena is the top-rated dude on the roster (#LOLCenaWins, anyone?),…

Hornswoggle Violates the Wellness Policy, Is Suspended

In an announcement made earlier today, the WWE revealed that employee Dylan Postl, better known to fans as Hornswoggle, has been suspended for 30 days after violating the company's Talent Wellness Program.
As per protocol, the WWE did not reveal what banned substance Postl was suspended for taking. Being a 30-day suspension on his first violation, marijuana and alcohol can be ruled out. A second violation would net a 60-day suspension, and a third would be automatic termination.
We'll have updates, although most likely unconfirmed ones through the Grapevine, as we get them.

Photo from WhatCulture

The Grapevine (9/29/15): NEW DAY SOCKS

Good morning, everyone! Welcome to the Grapevine, where we round up the (technically unconfirmed) rumors from the wild world of pro wrestling that you may have missed over the evening.

Not a lot of news arising from yesterday:

It finally looks like New Day socks will be for sale soon. Big E tweeted this earlier today: Soon... — Epsilon (@WWEBigE) September 28, 2015

We say: FINALLY! We wonder how long it took them to convince Vince, knowing how the man is always late in capitalizing these things. (It took the company years to make money off of Cena hate.)

NXT was once pitched to be a part of RAW last year. The idea was shot down pretty early, it seems. (Source: Wrestling Observer Live)
We say: That wouldn't have been a great idea. NXT (the show) needs to stand alone, and it already needs more time than it has now.

A third announcer will apparently be joining the TNA commentary table at Bound For Glory this Sunday. "The Pope" D'Angelo Diner…

Seth Rollins Breaks Everything, Including Records

Earlier this month, WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins broke a record, and none of us really noticed it until our very own MDJ brought it up this morning at the Smark Henry Offices.
As of September 5, 2015, Seth Rollins eclipsed the Miz as the longest reigning champion who won his title via Money in the Bank cash-in. Rollins' title reign is at 184 days, more than three weeks longer than the previous record, which the Miz held (160 days).

Edge has the shortest World Championship reign among all the reigns that started via MITB cash-in at 21 days. His very first WWE Championship run came at the expense of a weary John Cena at the end of New Year's Revolution 2006, but Cena won it back a mere three weeks later at that year's Royal Rumble pay-per-view.

Rob Van Dam's ill-fated WWE Championship run lasted just one day longer than Edge's first run. We all remember how that ended. And kids, that is why you shouldn't do drugs. Bad 'yun.

Interestingly, in the te…

Cafe Puro (9/28/15): Chronicling V11—Ranking Tanahashi's 2011-2012 Title Defenses

Before his career would even end, Hiroshi Tanahashi will have a spot in any Hall of Fame as one of the greatest professional wrestlers who ever lived, truly a "Once in a Century Talent," as New Japan Pro Wrestling would often remind you. And one of the reasons would be his historic fifth title reign for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, known for achieving V11, aka 11 successful title defenses. By doing so, he now holds the record for the most championship defenses in history, an achievement anyone would envy.

Today, we are going to do something very different. Seeing as though title defenses in some cases have been severely undervalued in many situations as of late (Nikki Bella, Brock Lesnar, and Dean Ambrose benefited from the lack of title defenses during their championship reigns), it's high time we highlight the importance of title defenses through Tanahashi's 2011-2012 run. Ever since he defeated the freelancer, Satoshi Kojima, for the title at Wrestle Kingdo…