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The Grapevine (1/23/18): A Bonafide Thug


Good morning, and this is the Grapevine! This section of Smark Henry is where we round up all the founded and unfounded rumors abound the pro wrestling scene that you may have missed over the evening.

The WWE Cruiserweight Division could be jinxed.

  • Reigning WWE Cruiserweight Champion Enzo Amore has been suspended by the company over rape accusations from a known social media model. The incident reportedly occurred last October in Phoenix, Arizona, where Amore, with the aid of a couple of friends, lured his victim to his hotel room and incapacitated her with three kinds of drugs. No word on what WWE plans to do with his supposed title defense against Cedric Alexander at Royal Rumble(Credit: WrestlingInc.com)

We say: What a scumbag. While Amore's side has yet to be heard, his backstage reputation and high-living lifestyle make him quite dodgy to begin with. There's no excuse for this kind of behavior, and if found guilty, we hope he gets exactly the kind of punishment he deserves.

What a black eye for the Cruiserweight Division though, that can't seem to catch a consistent break.


  • The Undertaker's supposed appearance at RAW 25 is rumored to finally set up his WrestleMania 34 program against John Cena. He hasn't been seen on TV since what everyone thought was his retirement at last year's 'Mania, when he fell to Roman Reigns. (Credit: Wrestling Observer)

We say: Rumors about a Cena-Taker WM program have been popping up for years, so this certainly isn't anything new. But with time clearly winding down on the 52-year-old Deadman, there's probably more urgency now than ever before. The only problem we have is that WWE is going to have to hustle big time to deliver a compelling hook. Really, with The Streak over and Roman Reigns now in charge of "The Yard," what's at stake?


  • WWE's TV distribution deal with the USA Network/NBC Universal isn't set to expire until September 2019, but reports are leaking already about interesting entities who may be looking into swiping the rights out from under them, including Amazon and Facebook. (Credit: Variety)

We say: For a company that broke boundaries with the PPV model and the WWE Network, porting media rights to an online-first entity like Facebook makes awesome sense—and potentially explains what sort of background agenda could be behind the Mixed Match Challenge broadcast model.

*****

What do you think about the Enzo Amore accusations? Do you think Taker-Cena is preordained? And how would you feel if WWE moved into an online-first model for its flagship properties?

Let us know your thoughts!

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