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Chris Jericho

MAMBINO’s Wrestlemania 29 Preview, Part 1

credit: Bleacher Report


 
It’s time! It’s time! It’s Wrestlemania time!
 
Welcome to the two-part, all encompassing Wrestlemania preview. I am your host The RAW Librarian and I will be joined by KOBEshigawa in breaking down the twenty-ninth annual, Granddaddy of em all. We are going to run down the final card, giving our thoughts on the presumed winners and losers as well as providing some analysis on which direction Vinny Mac would be wisest to pursue. Tomorrow, we’ll get to the man events, but in today’s post, we’ll touch on the still very important undercard.… Read more...

"The Top 50 Finishing Moves in WWE History" Review, Part 2

Welcome to part 2 of “The Top 50 Finishing Moves in WWE History.” You can find part 1 with my analysis of numbers 50-25 located here.. We pick up this column at number 24 on the list and it’s one of my personal favorites. The man representing this finisher has spent time in Mexico, Germany, Japan, ECW, WCW and the WWE. Here to Save Us All is the Ayotolla of Rock and Rolla. He is “Lionheart” Chris Jericho.

24. Chris Jericho “Lion Tamer/Walls of Jericho”

Basically what Chris Jericho does when he puts you in that move is he bends your body in a way that is never supposed to bend.” – Kofi Kingston


This submission move is probably my favorite of all time.

I’m not sure if a difference between the two finisher names was ever clarified or not. For me personally, I always considered the move to be “the Liontamer” when Jericho intensified the pressure by putting his knee on the back of his opponent, whereas “the Walls of Jericho” was more of a straight Boston Crab applied to bigger wrestlers. Again, that is just how I personally distinguished the two. The only knock I really have about this move, is that you absolutely need your opponents cooperation to apply it. Seriously, try putting this move on a person that doesn’t want it. It’s not going to happen…believe me, I’ve tried.



23. Edge “Spear”

He was his own greatest cheerleader, he made the build up to that move, part of the move.” – Mick Foley

I like Edge a lot so I am going to try and be kind here. The Spear, at least Edge’s version, is no where near as good as the Rhyno’s Gore! Gore! Gore! (imagine Paul Heyman screaming in Jim Ross’ ear at the top of his lungs).

The only Spear by Edge that deserves recognition is the one he performed on Jeff Hardy at Wrestlemania 17. I still remember watching that TLC Triple Threat Tag-team championship match with my mouth open the entire time. It’s a miracle that no one was seriously hurt or dead after that match. Other than Edge’s spear to Hardy off the ladder, Goldberg’s spear was far superior. I don’t want to take anything away from Edge. He had a phenomenal career. I just happen to think that his spear is vastly overrated.

22. Iron Sheik “Camel Clutch”

Iron Sheik’s Camel Clutch probably holds the distinction of being one of the most brutal yet simple holds that I’ve ever seen.” – CM Punk

I never had the pleasure of watching the WWE’s favorite racial caricature perform in the ring. The good news is, the Iron Sheik has a Twitter account that is just fantastic. Seriously, follow him on Twitter @the_ironsheik. Every tweet comes off like a drunken rant. As for the move itself….eh. I’ve seen better. It’s a cool transitional move. I would like it if it was meant to weaken the neck in anticipation of a stronger submission. I don’t think this move should have made the list. If it had to be included, it would be better placed in the 40’s.

21. John Cena “Attitude Adjustment”





20. Scott Hall “Razor’s Edge”

I’m gonna show you, just how bad, the Bad Guy can be!” – Scott Hall


HEY YO! Let’s all just take a minute and marvel at how Scott Hall is still alive. If you’re in the mood to be significantly depressed, take a minute and check out this ESPN 360 documentary on Scott Hall. Truly scary stuff.

Now that you are all in hig… Read more...

Monday Night RAW recap



Location: Las Vegas, Nevada 
Announcers: Jerry “The King” Lawler, Michael Cole

Welcome to the recap of the 999th episode of RAW.  

CM Punk in-ring segment

Hot crowd tonight. Great opening segment with CM Punk and the Big Show. Another example of CM Punk elevating the talent around him; Big Show actually made sense on the mic. The calmness in which he addressed the heckling Vegas crowd was brilliant.

“That is rude, I have a point I am trying to make.” -Big Show

Big Show alluded to the fact that he will knock out CM Punk in their match up and John Cena will cash in his recently won  Money in the Bank contract. Effective verbal combat between the two, setting up the stakes for the RAW main event quite well. And it only took 11 minutes. Take note HHH.

Tag Team Championship match
Prime Time Players w/AW vs R-Truth and Kofi Kingston

Way to have Darren and Titus challenge for the titles the night after losing a non-title match up vs Epico and Primo. We are really supposed to believe they have any chance of beating the tag team champions? Of course not. I’m not saying the Prime Time Players should have won the tag titles last night. I’m saying it doesn’t make any sense for the WWE to have Kofi and R-Truth wrestle Hunico and Camacho during the Money in the Bank Youtube preshow and have your number 1 contenders, Darren and Titus, wrestle on the actual PPV and lose cleanly.
Kofi and R-Truth winning was logical, but where do Darren and Titus go from here? The WWE seems more adamant on pushing Epico and Primo. Which is fine, I’ll take Rosa Mendes over AW any day of the week. 

Backstage
Eve Torres interrupting AJ and DB backstage was great. Why? Because she actually addressed Daniel Bryan’s actions in their tag match last week on RAW. It’s the small things that make me happy. Story line continuation is one of them.  

Zack Ryder vs Alberto Del Rio
Zack Ryder got in a few moves offensively but not many. Glorified squash. Ryder tapped very quickly once the cross arm breaker was applied. After the match Rey Mysterio returned from injury (suspension) to hit the 619 on Alberto Del Rio. 

Whatever. At least this gives Del Rio something to do now that Dolph Ziggler is the Smackdown Money in the Bank suitcase holder. I would have preferred Mysterio return and set Sin Cara on fire, but there’s still time. It’ll be good to have little Rey Rey back. 

@ZackRyder Finally had a match on #Raw tonight. And I finally pooped. #ItWasAGoodDay.

One man baaaaaaand segment
Rikishi vs Heath Slater 
Rikishi with the win. After the match he danced until the lights went out. When they came back on, Rikishi’s sons, the Usos, were in the ring. I was never a big fan of Rikishi. Aside from running over Stone Cold Steve Austin with his car, he never really accounted for much story line wise. However, it was a genuinely cool moment to see him share the same ring with his flesh and blood. I’m sure growing up they probably dreamed of winning the WWE title and celebrating in the ring with their family, but performing a memorized dance sequence was probably a close second. It was definitely something all of the them will remember for the rest of their lives. 

We’ve come a long way from having heavyset guys dance to get them over. On an unrelated note, stay tuned for Brodus Clay#RAWTonight

Mixed Tag match
Daniel Bryan/AJ Lee vs Miz/Eve

Possible Daniel Bryan face turn alert. Who is the most over person on the WWE roster r
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Monday Night RAW Recap: Weak Build to a Strong PPV


Location: Pepsi Center, Denver, Colorado
Announcers: Jerry Lawler, Michael Cole
Guest general manager: Anonymous RAW GM
This is the last RAW before the Money in the Bank pay-per-view on July 15th. Theoretically, this means the WWE should be actively trying to put on a good show. As you will see, nothing could be farther from the truth. 


AJ Lee/D-Bryan/CM Punk in ring segment
RAW started off the right way with AJ Lee bouncing down to the ring. Eventually CM Punk joins her, and AJ surprisingly proposes to him. Moments later, Daniel Bryan comes down and proposes to AJ. Somewhere in the world, Brie Bella is pissed. Segment ends with AJ telling us she is going to walk out of the arena tonight with her future husband. 
Spoiler Alert: At the end of the night, she walks out by herself. Not sure if the writers re-booked the show on the fly or what, but it doesn’t make any sense for AJ to make that declaration and then for the show to end the way it did. Sloppy booking. 
           
            
Abbey MacQueen ‏@AbigaelHay
Someone get AJ a skip-it. She’d easily break 100 #raw


 

Sheamus vs Jack Swagger
Sheamus did more damage to himself setting up his brogue kick than Swagger accomplished during this entire 30 second win. Anyone else immediately think of Marky Mark hitting himself in the movie “Fear” every time Sheamus pounds his chest in anticipation? Just me? Alright, moving on. 

            
 Ryan Shell ‏@DAsharpshooters

After a 20 second match. Michael Cole: “This is what #Raw is all about.” – Sad. #wwe
Tensai/Dolph Ziggler vs Tyson Kidd/Christian



The back fat slam

Another short match. Tensai with the pin over the current Intercontinental champion, Christian. He then proceeded to powerbomb Tyson Kidd onto the right apron after the match was over. Despite the domination, there is zero chance former Albert wins the ladder match on Sunday. 

Brodus Clay vs Drew McIntyre



The front fat slam

Drew McIntyre just hasn’t been the same since The United Kingdom disbanded. In all seriousness, how great was that stable in WWE 12 the video game? It was without a doubt Sheamus, McIntyre, Regal and Wade Barrett’s best work. It took longer for you to read those last three sentences than if you watched the Brodus Clay and Drew McIntyre match twice. Funkasauras squash in what seems to be a night of squashes. It’s like everyone is trying to Beat the Clock, except no stipulations were ever announced. 

John Cena/Kane vs Jerishow
Prior to the match Cena got on the stick and guaranteed a victory this Sunday at Money in the Bank. 

            
 darius lockhart ‏@DL_Hart

John Cena: “When I defy the odds and win the World Title for the 13th time….”


This was a pretty solid match up. But then again after our first 3 matches, anything was going to seem like Savage/Steamboat at WM 3. The whole time I watched this match, I was just dreading the four of them in the ring together this Sunday. Chris Jericho has a lot of work ahead of him in order to carry those three stiffs to a presentable ladder match. I am hoping that they prove me wrong, but it’s unlikely. 


Money in the Bank qualifying match: Sin Cara vs Heath Slater 

Cross Faced Chicken Wing

Obviously Sin Cara was going to win this one. Adding him to the Money in the Bank ladder match is a great idea. The man is a spot machine and he has absolutely no chance of winning the match. No chance…..that’s what he’s got.

After the match, Slater challenged any former WWE champion in the back to come out. Enter Bob Backlund. Crowd chants “you still g

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Monday Night RAW Recap: Old School Jericho




Location: Laredo, Texas
Announcers: Michael Cole, Jerry “The King” Lawler

Guest General Manager: Teddy Long (Ugh this outta be good)

Cena/Bryan/Punk/Jericho/Kane/Big Show in ring segment

Welcome to the 997th episode of RAW. It kicked off like any self respecting RAW should, with John Cena coming down the ramp to cut an electrifying promo. The other day I realized that John Cena is responsible for some of my favorite WWE moments over the past few years. To be honest, I’m not quite sure how I feel about that. 

1. Rob Van Dam vs John Cena One Night Stand 2006

2. CM Punk vs John Cena Money in the Bank 2011

3. Brock Lesnar vs John Cena Extreme Rules 2012

Say what you want about his wrestling ability, but he plays a hell of a foil.



Back to RAW action. Cena does his shtick for a while until Daniel Bryan minus ring entrance music interrupts. Everyone’s been trying to get their Daniel Bryan on recently, even Ohio representative “Mean” Jean Schmidt. Bryan gets meta with us and lets the audience know that he and John Cena have nothing in common, unless of course Bryan wins the title and Cena wins the Money in the Bank ladder match. 

CM Punk interjects. Gets the crowd involved with all the Yes! chants. 

Chris Jericho feels left out so he hit the ring. Classic Jericho ensued welcoming us all to “RAW is Jericho” as well as asking Bryan to kindly “shut the hell up.” Also, after tonight, none of the competitors will never eeeeeever be the same again apparently. That man knows how to sell a t-shirt. 

Kane gets involved, followed by an…insightful Jerry Lawler comment? “Not a lot of catchphrases for this guy, but a lot of victories.” Congratulations King, that was the first time I haven’t wanted to strangle you on commentary since 1999. 

“Welllll it’s the Big Show!” After Big Show’s music hits, all of the competitors in the ring start a full out brawl. 

Quick Money in the Bank prediction: Cena wins the RAW Money in the Bank match, challenges CM Punk to a match at Summerslam, becoming the first person to use the Money in the Bank contract honorably since Rob Van Dam 6 years ago. And he will be the first person to not win the championship when cashing in the contract. It has to happen sometime and Cena’s big enough and at the point where he does not need the title to be over.

Joe Nevills ‏@mibredclaimer

Punk, Cena, Bryan, Jericho. One of these things is not like the other.#Raw



Rhodes/Otunga, Titus O’Neill, and Darren Young vs Christian, Santino Marella, R-Truth, Kofi

RAW is NAMBLA



This match was alright until it completely broke down and Titus and Young left the ring. I’m not a fan of the Prime Time players just leaving match ups. It’s a stupid gimmick that makes them look weak. These guys should be pushed as viable challengers to the Tag Team titles.


 As I said, they leave and are soon followed by Cody Rhodes, leaving only Otunga in the ring to fight 4 guys. 

To make the odds even worse Brodus Clay comes out and throws Otunga back in the ring. Why would that not result in a disqualification? Either way that leads to: sock puppet, killswitch, victory, grown men dancing with children. 


Alberto Del Rio vs Sin Cara

So Sin Cara was Teddy Long’s surprise? Talk about anticlimactic. Good Lord, I hope that man never throws me a surprise party. A real surprise would have been a Rey Mysterio Jr. return, fresh off suspension. 

Crowd chants “culero” at Alberto Del Rio, which is Spanish for…umm something Read more...

WWE for a NBA Fan – Pacific Division (Part 6)

Hi, friends. Welcome back for the last installment of WWE for a NBA Fan. For those of you that don’t know, in my darkest NBA lockout doldrums, I started concocting alternative entertainment streams for those of us who missed basketball more than our own grandmothers. For a sundry of reasons, I realized that the WWE was a perfect alternative for the NBA, and for reasons that you wouldn’t think. Knowing the 30 NBA fan bases, as well as the WWE Superstars as well as I do, I identified and matched up teams with various wrestlers, division by division.

Even though we’ve been writing these posts for months to little fanfare and zero critical acclaim, Grantland’s Masked Man popularized the concept better than we could. In our 1-way rivalry with the mainstream’s best pro wrestling writer, we’re currently the Virgil to his “Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase. Except without all the racial discrimination subtext. Hopefully.


Today, we’ll be finishing up the series by looking at the Pacific Division.  

Golden State Warriors: Jack Swagger

I love the Bay Area. Great place to visit, plenty to see and undoubtedly, a great hoops town. They know their basketball, and love their crappy team unconditionally. They’ve been privileged to see 20 years of great offense, from Run TMC to Baron to Monta to Steph. They know what ball is supposed to look like, and despite the Warriors portraying none of the game’s fundamentals, but they support them unconditionally.
But a question out to Oaktown and beyond – what if you could have a guy who is fundamentally sound? What if you could cheer for a guy with all the right tools who you can see going straight to the top? What if you didn’t have to watch an entertaining, yet vitally flawed team that will never quite give you the hoops you deserve? That would be nice, wouldn’t it? So that’s why you’re rooting for Jack Swagger.
A product of Perry, Oklahoma, Swagger comes straight from the wrestling program at the University of Oklahoma. After learning and perfecting grappling collegiately, Swagger entered the ranks of the professionals in the WWE. He’s already won the World Championship, and with his improving mic work augmenting his already prodigious skill set in the ring, more title reigns are certain to follow. Like the young player the Warriors seem to perpetually attain, Swagger is gifted and ready for the future. However, unlike them, he has the tools to take him and keep him at the top. The Golden State Swaggers? Sounds good to me.

Los Angeles Clippers: Chris Jericho


Writing this hurts me more than I can possibly bear. Chris Jericho has long been my favorite WWE superstar, and the Clippers have always earned by most sincere bile and hatred. Still, even through my haze of detest, I can’t deny the comparisons.


Chris Jericho is a six-time World Champion. He’s competed in federations all around the world, winning titles in every single one of them. He’s recognized as one of the greats of his generation, alongside Stone Cold Steve Austin, The Rock, Triple H, Mick Foley, and The Undertaker.


However, next to those names, Jericho runs at a distant 2nd tier. Somehow, Y2J’s massive accomplishments and talent haven’t put him quite at the level of those guys I just mentioned. Austin, The Rock, Hunter, Foley, and the Undertaker have all transcended past the characters that they played on TV, and became larger than wrestling figures. They are household names, guest stars on television sRead more...

MAMBINO’s Wrestlemania XXVIII Preview

Much to the chagrin of some of you snobs, the average hardcore WWE fan isn’t that much different than your average American professional sports fan. Clean up, vomit spill on aisle Que-Ese.

There’s just a certain level of particular, isolted psychosis you have to have to follow a sport, or in my case sports entertainment, with enough fervor that you could call yourself something more than just “avid”. There’s the casual observer, who just likes to be momentarily entertained with movement on the screen and the occasional thrill associated with the clock winding down.

We are not those people. The hardcore sports fan knows the type of minutae usually reserved for people pacing busily in sanitariums, reciting that Piazza had a 1.012 OPS in his 2000 season, and that Pete Rose had 3,358 hits…just as a Red.

The WWE fan knows that the Iron Sheik surprisingly beat the World Champion Bob Backlund in 1983, only to lose the title to young superstar Hulk Hogan in January of 1984. Recalling ridiculous facts like John Cena has been champion 11 times, and yet the combined days with the strap don’t add up to Bruno Sammartino’s first reign back in the 60’s and 70’s. Knowing that Wrestlemania took place in New York, LA, Chicago, New York, Detroit, Atlantic City, Toronto, LA, Indianapolis, Las Vegas and New York again for the first 10 editions.

I am a crazy WWE fan. And I just summoned all that information up by pure memory.


So as you can see, we have a lot in common with the average MLB, NBA, NFL or NHL aficionado. We memorize our stats, whether they’re manufactured or not, take mental photographs of the great moments and idolize those that best exemplify greatness.

John Cena and the Rock are two of those legendary figures that resemble the Alex Rodriguez and Cal Ripken of their sport. Just like in baseball or basketball, there’s constantly the comparisons of who had the better career, the more dominant title reigns, could talk the best trash or in a fantasy situation, who could beat who. Fans love to pit favorite against favorite, regardless of if they fought in a different era with completely different styles in completely different circumstances. It’s just the way the sports world works. Just as basketball historians would define this era as LeBron’s, or the one before it as Kobe’s, and Jordan before him, and so forth and so forth, WWE historians (…nerds like you and me), do the very same obsessive matching game.

Hulk Hogan, the alpha dog of the 1980’s, was the first professional wrestler in Vince McMahons’ now national World Wrestling Federation to break out into the mainstream American media. His reign, title or no title, lasted throughout the early nineties, when Vince decided to go in a different direction with a young Canadian star named Bret Hart. Bret’s time came and went, and infamously passed the torch (unwillingly) to Shawn Michaels. After Michaels, the “Attitude” era was born, with Stone Cold Steve Austin being the first man to break in the new, edgier WWF. But as Austin’s body broke down, the first colored face to ascend the mountain was Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

Rocky remained at the top of the WWF card for a couple years, but before Hollywood came calling, a couple men tried to break through to the mainstream much like Hogan and the Rock did, but with so little success. That is, until John Cena became the top draw in the company.

I gave this little history lesson because with a couple i… Read more...