Wrestling 101

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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by Madzimum Thrill on Mon Jul 03, 2017 3:18 pm

Did you understand the tag rules just fine? One guy from each team legal, have to tag to become legal, technically the illegal man only gets 5 seconds to leave the ring or his team gets disqualified but they don't really enforce it because people like crazy double team moves.
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by EncouragementMachine on Mon Jul 03, 2017 3:30 pm

I have pretty much just assumed that the rules are more like suggestions and have more or less been ignoring the concept. I could tell they were tagging in/out, but that seemed like a formality considering how many mirror moves they were pulling off on the poor guy. It's supposed to be fun and cool, right? How often is a rule really enforced?
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by Madzimum Thrill on Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:13 pm

When it suits them to, really. The Japanese crowds don't like disqualifications so they don't really enforce rules that could disqualify someone unless it's a huge infraction (kicking someone in the balls or knocking them out with a weapon in the middle of the ring). Tags are still necessary for determining who's legal to win or lose the match, but otherwise the referee will only enforce rules to keep the match flowing (somewhat like they do in real sports) rather than calling every single infraction

Okay then, New Japan Pro Wrestling's G1 Special in the USA Night 1. I'll PM you where to find a replay of the event, it's like 3+ hours long, so I would suggest if you're pressed for time, watch the Championship matches and the Tournament matches, skip Match 1, 2 and 5. Maybe 3 if you're really pressed for time (it was a so-so tournament match, but being a tournament match, it was still somewhat important). Let me know what you think, and then I'll queue up Night 2, which was actually longer but had less important matches on it.

Things to know:

New Japan in America:

This is New Japan's first time running shows in America in quite a little while now. Every few years, one of the Japanese promotions tries to open up an American branch or run shows in America but they usually only last a little while. New Japan is actually on our TV though (AXS TV/The Fight Network runs New Japan shows) and they've been getting pretty popular among hardcore fans, so it's a good time to run it.

English Commentary:

On the English commentary team, Jim Ross is the best commentator of all-time and one of the most beloved by fans. WWE sort of put him out to pasture because he's getting older and can't quite keep up anymore, but they've been utilizing him to dub the taped New Japan shows on AXS TV and since they were broadcasting these shows, they used him to commentate the shows as well.

His broadcast partner is former UFC Heavyweight Champion Josh Barnett, who also did a spell with pro wrestling in New Japan back during one of their darker eras.

Masks:

There's a few masked wrestlers on these shows, most of them Mexican. In Mexico, masks are considered more important than anything, they're part of a wrestler's identity. Ripping off a wrestle's mask is an automatic disqualification. Masked wrestlers will also put their masks up in "bet" matches, where the loser has to unmask.

Young Boys:

How the Japanese train their wrestlers is that they move into the New Japan dojo and become "Young Boys." They live in the dojo, cook for the wrestlers, carry their bags, work as security, put up the ring and do all the grunt-work while also training to be wrestlers. When they advance to the stage of being ring-ready, they are put into preliminary matches where they're only allowed to wear black boots and black trunks, and use basic moves, and they only win matches against each other and tend to be the losing wrestler in tag matches with anyone else. Once their trainers feel like they're ready, they "graduate" from the dojo and are sent to wrestle in foreign countries for a few years to gain experience both in the ring and generally in life (being in unfamiliar locker rooms where they don't speak the language) and once the office feels they're ready, they're called back to Japan and re-introduced to the crowd with a new character and promoted to the main roster.

Partnerships:

New Japan primarily partners with three other promotions, meaning they share wrestlers and will run joint shows together from time to time:

RoH: Ring of Honor is the #2 or #3 promotion out of the United States, which isn't saying much (WWE's minor league side-promotion competes with Ring of Honor, they could never hope to touch the WWE). The top Ring of Honor guys sort of max out around the upper midcard of New Japan, not-quite main eventers but good wrestlers

CMLL: Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre is the oldest surviving wrestling promotion in the world, dating back to 1933. It's a Mexican Lucha Libre promotion, and New Japan treats CMLL wrestlers more like special attractions ("Come see the cool masked flippy guys!") than roster regulars.

Revolution Pro: A promotion out of England I think. I don't know much about them, but England doesn't really have one big unified national promotion, but they have a cluster of smaller promotions that are all getting varying degrees of popular right now. Garlic Junior probably knows more.

Heavyweights/Junior Heavyweights:/[b] Heavyweights are over 220 lbs, Junior Heavyweights are below.

[b]G1 Special Night 1


Match 1: 10-Man Tag Team Match: Bullet Club ("The Underboss" Bad Luck Fale, "The Villain" Marty Scurll, "The Young Bucks" Matt and Nick Jackson, and "The Tokyo Pimp" Yujiro Takahashi) vs. Chaos ("RPG/Roppongi Vice" Beretta and Rocky Romero, Jay and Mark Briscoe, and "The Aerial Assassin" Will Ospreay)

- If you happen to watch this match and anyone specifically catches your eye in this match I'll run them down for you, but it's mostly just further faction warfare between the Bullet Club (Kenny's group) and CHAOS (Okada's group)
- The Young Bucks are the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions. That match you saw between Roppongi Vice and the Bucks was probably over these titles. The Bucks will be defending against RPG Vice on Night 2. They're also the Ring of Honor World Tag Team Champions (RoH doesn't have weight-distinctions with their titles).

Match 2: 8-Man Tag Team Match Dragon Lee, Jushin "Thunder" Liger, Titán and Volador Jr. vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (BUSHI, "The King of Darkness" EVIL, "The Ticking Time Bomb" Hiromu Takahashi and SANADA)

- Jushin Liger is a Junior Heavyweight legend, but he's in his 50s and his career is slowly winding down.
- Dragon Lee, Titan and Volador Jr are Mexican wrestlers from CMLL
- Los Ingobernables de Japon are a group formed by Tetsuya Naito from later on in the card, riffing off a similar group in CMLL that Naito was part of. They basically just do whatever the fuck they want.
- SANADA, Bushi and EVIL are the NEVER Openweight Six-Man Tag Team Titles, a Championship introduced last year for three-man teams, with no weight restrictions.

Match 3: IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship Tournament Quarterfinal Match: Hangman Page vs. Jay Lethal

- The IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship is a brand-new title created specifically for this event. I'm not sure if it'll be defended regularly in Japan or is meant to be a title defended in American only. This tournament is to crown the inaugural champion.
- Hangman Page is a member of the Ring of Honor-side of the Bullet Club, serving as their enforcer.
- Jay Lethal is a former Ring of Honor World Champion and primarily a Ring of Honor wrestler who's only made a few appearances in New Japan.
- Hangman Page's finisher is the Rite of Passage. Jay Lethal's is the Lethal Injection

4: IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship Tournament Quarterfinal Match Juice Robinson vs. Zack Sabre Jr.

- Juice Robinson is a WWE-trainee who wasn't happy with the direction his career was taking there and left to join the New Japan training dojo. He's become quite a serviceable mid-card wrestler, and is a member of "Taguchi Japan" which I'll run down in the match after this.
- Zack Sabre Jr is an Englishman (I think out of Rev Pro) who specializes in limb and joint manipulation. He's the only member of the faction Suzuki-gun part of this show.
- Suzuki-gun aka "The Suzuki Army" is a faction of bullies with an MMA fighting bent, lead by long-time pro wrestler and MMA fighter Minoru Suzuki, who isn't on this tour
- Juice Robinson's finisher is Pulp Fiction (this is not Juice Robison, couldn't find a gif of him doing it). Zack Sabre Jr tends to wrap his opponents up and tap them out somehow.

5: 8-Man Tag Team Match: Jay White and Taguchi Japan (David Finlay, Hiroshi Tanahashi and Kushida) vs. Hunter Club (Billy Gunn and Yoshitatsu) and Tempura Boyz (Sho Tanaka and Yohei Komatsu)

- "Taguchi Japan" is a bit of a joke faction. Most of the unaffiliated New Japan wrestlers tend to tag team with each other on smaller shows, so what ended up happening is the more "good guy" wrestlers just formed a faction together but voted the leader be Rysuke Taguchi, a talented Junior Heavyweight wrestler who's probably a little past his prime but also a big goofball and a fan favourite in his own right.
- Jay White and the Tempura Boyz are young boys on excursion right now.
- Tanahashi is the IWGP Intercontinental Championship. If the Heavyweight Title is #1, the IC Title is #1A, usually featuring one of the top guys in the promotion feuding with guys looking to break into the main event, and during big-time events, fellow main eventers. The IWGP IC title was originally supposed to serve a very similar function to the newly created IWGP United States Title, a title for foreign wrestlers to represent themselves with, but it eventually rose to such prominence that it even main evented one of the Wrestle Kingdom shows.

6 IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Title Match: Guerrillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga and Tanga Roa) (c) vs. War Machine (Hanson and Raymond Rowe)

- The IWGP Tag Team Titles are the Heavyweight brand of tag team championships in New Japan. The last few years, they've been propped up primarily by a lot of foreign wrestlers.
- The Guerillas of Destiny/GOD are a pair of Tongan brothers and the sons of retired wrestler and legendary tough-guy Meng/Haku. They're members of the Bullet Club.
- Every year, Ring of Honor runs a "Top Prospects Tournament" where they invite a bunch of wrestlers who haven't gotten national exposure to take part in a tournament where the winner gets an ROH TV Title match. Hanson and Raymond Rowe both took part in the same tournament and fought each other in the finals, but had such similar ass-kicking styles that they formed a successful tag team called War Machine together.
- War Machine and GoD have traded the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Titles over the last little while.
- Here's a very large picture of War Machine using their fishing move, Fallout. GOD's finisher is Guerilla Warfare

7 IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship Tournament Quarterfinal Match: Tetsuya Naito vs. Tomohiro Ishii

- Tetsuya Naito was a very talented straight-laced wrestler that New Japan wanted to be a main event star, but for whatever reason the Japanese fanbase didn't accept him at that spot. Naito eventually left for CMLL in Mexico, and joined a group called Los Ingobernables, a group of young, talented hotheads who did whatever they wanted. Naito brought that attitude back with him to Japan, and rode it all the way to an IWGP Heavyweight Title win last year (and a now legendary reaction to winning that title) and into being one of the most popular wrestlers in the promotions. He formed his own version of Los Ingobernables in Japan with a bunch of young boys returning from excursion and overlooked wrestlers that he'd trained with when he was younger.
- "The Stone Pitbull" Tomohiro Ishii doesn't look like much, but he's one of the toughest, hardest hitting guys on the entire roster. Ishii has never really risen beyond being an occasional top-title challenger, but he's pulled off massive wins over big opponents in the past. Ishii is a member of CHAOS
- Before Naito left for Mexico, him and Ishii feuded over a Championship that's not featured at this event.
- Naito's finisher is DESTINOOOOOOO. Ishii's finisher is the Brainbuster (here he is giving it to Naito during their aforementioned feud)

8: IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship Tournament Quarterfinal Match "The Cleaner" Kenny Omega vs. "Big Mike" Michael Elgin
- You already know Kenny
- Michael Elgin is a former Ring of Honor World Champion who primarily trained himself in the Japanese style, and almost instantly became a crowd favourite (Japanese fans tend to like thick, hard-hitting foreigners). He's coming off of a shoulder injury that's kept him out and this is his first major action since coming back (you can see he's not totally in great shape right now, usually he's more muscular). His finisher is a Buckle Bomb into an Elgin Bomb. I think Elgin is a member of Taguchi Japan.
- These two feuded over the IWGP Intercontinental Title early last year.

9 IWGP Heavyweight Championship Match: "Rainmaker" Kazuchika Okada (c) vs. "The American Nightmare" Cody Rhodes
- You already know Okada, he's still the Heavyweight Champion
- Cody Rhodes is the son of the late "American Dream" Dusty Rhodes, a famous '70s and '80s World Champion who built his name on showing people that even though he was an underdog, he could reach the top of the mountain. Cody hit a glass ceiling in the WWE, and left a year or so ago to try his fortunes elsewhere, becoming "The American Nightmare" in the process. If his father, the son of a plumber who made it big, is an example of the best of America, Cody is an example of the worst, a privileged rich kid who grew up enjoying the finer things in life and he'll stoop to any low and pull any kind of cheating shenanigan to get what he wants. Cody is a member of the Bullet Club
- If you remember during the second Okada/Omega match, it was Cody who came to ring-side with a towel in hand, looking to throw it in and cost Kenny the Heavyweight Title. I never really thought much of it at the time, but our boy Garlic Junior broached the question: "Does Cody really care about Kenny, or was he going to fuck Kenny over by doing that?"
- Cody Rhodes finisher is the Cross-Rhodes


Last edited by Madzimum Thrill on Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:03 pm; edited 3 times in total
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by EncouragementMachine on Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:41 pm

Holy geez.

These infodump walls of text you're doin'? *Extremely* informative. Faction info, match order, links where appropriate - I really appreciate the effort!

Respect.
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by Garlic Junior on Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:49 am

I'm fucking loving this. You have no idea how much I enjoy Ma's posts.

Plus the fact you enjoy the Japanese commentary... we're onto a winner here. So excited.

(Now go fall in love with Ishii and Naito so we can be BFFs)

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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by EncouragementMachine on Wed Jul 05, 2017 4:23 pm

I'm about halfway thru now, chipping away at matches as I get moments to breathe. I hardly ever get to really carve out movie-sized chunks of time except on weekends and even that's iffy.

@Madzimum Thrill wrote:Match 1: 10-Man Tag Team Match: Bullet Club ("The Underboss" Bad Luck Fale, "The Villain" Marty Scurll, "The Young Bucks" Matt and Nick Jackson, and "The Tokyo Pimp" Yujiro Takahashi) vs. Chaos ("RPG/Roppongi Vice" Beretta and Rocky Romero, Jay and Mark Briscoe, and "The Aerial Assassin" Will Ospreay)

I like Ospreay's gimmick. Dude just rejects the concept of gravity. Aside from the fact that Bullet Club spent a solid five minutes trying to MURDER the guy, he seems to want to spend more time off the floor than on his feet. Too bad it went south there at the end.

@Madzimum Thrill wrote:Match 3: IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship Tournament Quarterfinal Match: Hangman Page vs. Jay Lethal

I'm glad Lethal won. I do not think I care for Page!

@Madzimum Thrill wrote:4: IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship Tournament Quarterfinal Match Juice Robinson vs. Zack Sabre Jr.

Robinson ain't got much going for him other than being a Loud Boy from what I can tell. I like ZSJ's contortionist bit. This one was satisfying.
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by Madzimum Thrill on Wed Jul 05, 2017 4:59 pm

@EncouragementMachine wrote:
I like Ospreay's gimmick. Dude just rejects the concept of gravity. Aside from the fact that Bullet Club spent a solid five minutes trying to MURDER the guy, he seems to want to spend more time off the floor than on his feet. Too bad it went south there at the end.

So with Ospreay, there's maybe only 4-5 other guys in the world who can match what he does in the air. He's a young Englishman who burst onto the international scene last year after a series of matches with Marty Scurll. His future is ridiculously bright, and it sort of seems like he's not going to get a lot of accolades in New Japan either because he's too young/immature or because he's probably gonna end up in the WWE whenever he wants so they're hesitant to stick invest too much in him for when he probably leaves.


I'm about halfway thru now, chipping away at matches as I get moments to breathe. I hardly ever get to really carve out movie-sized chunks of time except on weekends and even that's iffy.

Maybe we shouldn't do the WWE too
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by Madzimum Thrill on Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:59 am

There's a WWE Pay-Per-View today, want in on it? Mad
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by EncouragementMachine on Sun Jul 09, 2017 6:40 pm

@Madzimum Thrill wrote:6 IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Title Match: Guerrillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga and Tanga Roa) (c) vs. War Machine (Hanson and Raymond Rowe)

War Machine is how I get down. More of this.

@Madzimum Thrill wrote:8: IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship Tournament Quarterfinal Match "The Cleaner" Kenny Omega vs. "Big Mike" Michael Elgin

I liked Omega against Okada, but I think I just might not like Okada very much! He's got a magnificent jawline but seems to be a punching bag that wins matches. I like Omega, but I was rooting against him this match. He had it wrapped up in the first 10 minutes but eh, Elgin's more my style.

@Madzimum Thrill wrote:9 IWGP Heavyweight Championship Match: "Rainmaker" Kazuchika Okada (c) vs. "The American Nightmare" Cody Rhodes

I think I hate both of these wrestlers. Okay match, but booooo, I wanted Ospreay to fly in like a bird and take 'em both out.

@Madzimum Thrill wrote:There's a WWE Pay-Per-View today, want in on it? silent

Sure!
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by EncouragementMachine on Sun Jul 09, 2017 6:49 pm

I think Cody Rhodes is more what I was expecting when you described Kenny Omega for the first time. Spittin' on refs. Talkin' smack. Just clearly a jerk. Omega and crew is boisterous to be sure, but not to the extent that flag-boy is.
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by Madzimum Thrill on Sun Jul 09, 2017 7:26 pm

G1 Special Night 2

Match 1, Match 2, Match 4 and Match 8 are probably skippable (normally Match 8 shouldn't be, but this isn't Billy Gunn's style and Tanahashi is wrestling with a fucked shoulder, so the match is so-so). I probably would've said Match 5 and 7 but you like War Machine, Elgin and Ospreay so maybe not.

1  - Six Man Tag Team Match: Jushin Thunder Liger and Taguchi Japan (David Finlay and Kushida) vs. The Tempura Boyz (Sho Tanaka and Yohei Komatsu) and Yoshitatsu


2  - IWGP US Title Tournament Semi-Final: Jay Lethal vs. Kenny Omega

3  - IWGP US Title Tournament Semi-Final: Tomohiro Ishii vs. Zack Sabre Jr.

4  - 10-Man Tag Team Match: Dragon Lee, Jay White, Juice Robinson, Titán and Volador Jr. vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (Bushi, Evil, Hiromu Takahashi, Sanada and Tetsuya Naito)

Nerd Note: Every member of Los Ingobernables de Japon is in this match.

5  - Six-Man Tag Team Match: Bullet Club (Hangman Page, Tama Tonga and Tanga Roa) vs. Michael Elgin and War Machine (Hanson and Raymond Rowe)

6  - IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Title Match: The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson) (c) vs. Roppongi Vice (Beretta and Rocky Romero)

Nerd Notes:

- The Young Bucks are obnoxious as fuck wrestlers who wear '80s style gear, do a ton of unnecessary flips, and throw tons of super-kicks, but they get away with it because they're really good. The Bucks are members of Bullet Club
- Roppongi is the red-light district of Japan, Roppongi/RPG Vice are a tag team of long-time veteran Rocky Romero (I believe he started training in New Japan's now-closed Los Angeles Dojo at the age of 15 or 16) and WWE washout Trent Beretta who are sort of portraying Roppongi party boys. They lost the Junior tag titles to the Young Bucks recently by submission (the first time the Bucks have used a submission move to win a major match), this is a rematch. RPG are members of CHAOS

7 Bullet Club (Bad Luck Fale, Cody, Marty Scurll and Yujiro Takahashi) vs. Chaos (Jay Briscoe, Kazuchika Okada, Mark Briscoe and Will Ospreay) Eight-man tag team match

Nerd Note: Ospreay and Scurll are two Englishmen who first got noticed internationally for a feud against each other.

8 Hiroshi Tanahashi (c) vs. Billy Gunn IWGP Intercontinental Championship

- Nerd Note:
- Tanahashi is the previous era's "ace", a star wrestler who changed the game and brought the people back after some very bad decisions cost New Japan a lot of fans. He's on the decline (working with a legit fucked arm right now), but still good enough to win big matches. He won the IWGP Intercontinental Title recently, his first singles title in a year or two
- Billy Gunn is a WWE Tag Team specialist whose heyday was back in the late '90s/early '00s wrestling boom (The Monday Night Wars and The Attitude Era). He's much older now, and doesn't really wrestle the Japanese style, but is arguably the most famous guy on this entire card. I think they were trying to draw more casual fans to show using a familiar name like his

9 Winner of Jay Lethal/Kenny Omega vs. winner of Tomohiro Ishii/Zack Sabre Jr. IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship

I'll queue up the WWE one tomorrow, though that one is a lot more self-explanatory being in English

@EncouragementMachine wrote:I think Cody Rhodes is more what I was expecting when you described Kenny Omega for the first time. Spittin' on refs. Talkin' smack. Just clearly a jerk. Omega and crew is boisterous to be sure, but not to the extent that flag-boy is.

Kenny is closer to being the Japanese idea of rude foreigner, whereas Cody is more the western idea of a bad guy/heel wrestler
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by Madzimum Thrill on Mon Jul 10, 2017 6:48 pm

WWE Things To Know:

McMahon Family: WWE is publicly traded company, but Vince McMahon still has controlling interest. The company was started and run by his late father (Vince Sr) out of New York back when wrestling was more of a carved-up regional entity, Vince bought it from his father and as cable and all of that was coming in, he started scooping up talent and going national, putting pretty much everyone of the old guard out of business eventually (the last one to fall was WCW in 2001). During the late '90s/early '00s wrestling boom, McMahon ended up on TV portraying an evil boss that was wildly successful (he was arguably the best bad guy in wrestling history) opposite Stone Cold, and he's sort of maintained that Evil Billionaire character ever since. He's 70 now, so he rarely appears on TV (he doesn't think people want to see old people on-screen).

McMahon has two children who've been on-screen characters as well: Shane and Stephanie. Shane is likable McMahon, a guy who is not afraid to do daredevil stunts and mix it up even though he's not a trained wrestler. Stephanie is a chip off her father's block, at her best (arguably worst, men can't beat up women so it's hard for her to eventually eat her words) when she's a spoiled billionaire princess demanding things go her way. Her husband, Triple H (the King of Kings and the Cerebral Assassin), was a top wrestler from that same Rock/Austin era who is probably overrated, but maybe not. He's got a bad reputation for "burying" new wrestlers (making their characters look bad and denying them top spots) and main eventing as a top star when he arguably wasn't good enough for it (he was at his best when he was the bad guy rivaling the top star), but he's older now, only wrestling once or twice a year and mostly running the WWE's minor league developmental program. Whenever he shows up on screen, he regularly outsmarts everyone, carries around a sledgehammer that he uses as a weapon, and still manages to have really good matches (his ability in the ring has never really been in doubt, just his overall standing).

When playing on-screen bad-guys, they tend to care very much who's holding the top Championship, doing everything they can and rigging the system so their top favourites can win the title and represent the corporate entity of WWE in the way they want.

Brand Split: So the WWE has a gigantic roster and a lot of TV time to fill every week, especially with the two main shows, the 3 hour Monday Night Raw and the 2 hour Smackdown Live (on Tuesday). They recently decided that their roster was too large to feature everyone, so they split the roster in half and held a draft like a sports team, each picking a roster of wrestlers who would wrestle exclusively for their show. Shane McMahon and a very popular underdog wrestler named Daniel Bryan (who recently had to retire due to concussion issues) run Smackdown Live, Stephanie and the recently returned former Olympic Gold Medalist (for real) and wrestling legend nearing his retirement, Kurt Angle, run Monday Night Raw. The PPV that I'll direct you to is a Raw-specific event.

Other brands: WWE also plays host two other sorta-brands. NXT is the WWE minor league developmental program. They built a big-ass "Performance Center", an NFL-like training center where they can train new wrestlers from the ground up with state-of-the-art equipment and trainers. Before they show up on the main roster on Raw or Smackdown, they wrestle in NXT, run by Triple H and a retired English wrestler named William Regal (taped out of a local Florida university) and learn the trade on the job. Sort of. The dirty truth is that a large chunk of the NXT roster are actually indie guys that the WWE have passed over years ago (some as long as 15+ years) and NXT is being used to part-compete with indie wrestling which has becoming pretty popular among wrestling fans lately. NXT is sort of run like an older 1970s or 1980s wrestling territory, and for awhile there it was WWE's best weekly show (every Wednesday on their pay network) and started what they branded "The Women's Revolution" which I'll get to a bit later.

205 Live: If you notice the ropes suddenly turned purple, it's because 205 Live is up. It's a pseudo-brand specific to Cruiserweight-sized wrestlers, who are under 205 lbs. This is a recent attempt by the WWE to sign up small guys that they traditionally passed on so they can compete with indie wrestling, but it's sort of fizzled. 205 Live has their own shown every Tuesday on the pay-network after Smackdown, but they're also showcased in matches on Monday Night Raw. Matches are good, but the fans haven't been properly taught that they should care about it, and WWE's spotty storytelling abilities don't do them any favours.

Women's Revolution: So up until recently, women wrestlers were mostly just faux-strippers or models who were taught to wrestle a bit but were mostly there to be looked at, branded "Divas". Some of the women actually got really good at wrestling but that was always considered secondary. It was a holdover from the late '90s when wrestling got really raunchy. This changed in NXT (really it was Ronda Rousey first in UFC), when the women wrestlers coming up wanted to be competitive wrestlers and not just eye-candy, and it turns out that the fans were very ready for women to be competitive wrestlers having bad-ass matches. This eventually wormed its way up to the main roster, and now the women are considered on a near even footing with the men, even main eventing some PPVs. The fans don't really call it the "Women's Revolution", that's just WWE's soulless corporate branding (they even soullessly corporate brand the fans as "The WWE Universe")

PPVS: Technically they're not Pay-Per-Views, it's just a hold-over from when they were. WWE sets up their storylines so that the big moments happen on monthly big events that fans pay for. It's now run off of their internet streaming service, the WWE Network ($9.99 per month).

"Champions Advantage" Fans hate Disqualifications and Countouts, but unlike Japan, North America has never been forced to abandon them by competition from elsewhere. Hitting a ref intentionally, using a weapon etc will be an automatic disqualification. The "Champions advantage" is that you have to pin or submit the Champ or beat them by the stipulation of the match in order to win the Championship. If you beat the champ by disqualification or countout, they still retain their title belt.

WWE Great Balls of Fire (Vince chose the name because it made him laugh, yes Vince is literally that immature):

For the most part the commentators will tell you what's going on. There's usually a good-guy commentator and a bad-guy commentator so you get every storyline angle. I'll just do bare basics.

Kickoff Show: Its a free youtube kickoff show to entice people to sign up and watch.

WWE Cruiserweight Title Match
Neville (c) vs. Akira Tozawa (w/Titus O'Neil)


- Neville was a well-liked English high-flying wrestler who never really rose beyond being an opening card act. He was overlooked and never even entered into the inaugural Cruiserweight Classic tournament when they started the 205 Live. He got mad, turned bad-guy, and became "The King of Cruiserweights", delivering Game of Thrones style promos and beating everyone.
- Akira Tozawa is a high-energy Japanese cruiserweight who's getting his first shot at the Cruiserweight Title. Titus O'Neill was primarily a tag team wrestler who's been sort of used-car salesmanning himself into becoming other wrestlers managers these days. He was recruiting Tozawa and pumping him up for his first Cruiserweight title match.
- The Cruiserweight Title is the top and only title of the 205 Live pseudo-brand. To be eligible to compete, wrestlers have to be 205 lbs or below.


Singles Match
Bray Wyatt vs. Seth Rollins


- Seth Rollins, the "Kingslayer" and the "Architect", was the brains behind a popular para-military-style trio called The Shield, with Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose. Seth stabbed the Shield in the back and joined Stephanie McMahon and Triple H's group "The Authority", letting them rig the system for him and becoming Universal Champion in the process. He eventually came to blow with the Authority when they discarded him in favour of someone else, leading to him fighting and beating The King of Kings Triple H at Wrestlemania. He's spent post-Mania trying to make amends to the fans for his past actions.
- Bray Wyatt is a Louisianna backwoods apocalyptic cult leader messiah with supernatural powers (or he's a demonic entity inhabiting the body of a professional wrestler). He has a strange rambling speaking style and seems to care more about protecting his image as a self-styled God-saviour than he is about winning championships.

Singles Match
Big Cass vs. Enzo Amore

- These two were a successful and popular tag team in both NXT and in the WWE, who strangely never won the Tag Titles together (a team this popular usually does). Cass is a 7-foot tall powerful looking athlete, Enzo is like a cross between an excited puppy and a New Jersey trash-bag and is one of the best talkers in the WWE. Then dramatic soap-opera stuff happened and Cass turned on Enzo. They'll tell you about it.

WWE RAW Tag Team Title 30 Minute Iron Man Match
Cesaro & Sheamus (c) vs. The Hardy Boyz (Jeff Hardy & Matt Hardy)

- Raw's version of the Tag Team titles (as opposed to Smackdown and NXT, which both have their own tag team champions)
- Sheamus is an imposing Irishman who the WWE always wanted to make a big-star but the fans never really got behind him that way. Cesaro is the opposite, a Swiss wrestler with great strength and athletic prowess who has a tricky time speaking, so WWE never really got behind him even though the fans liked him. They mashed them together as a tag team and they've been fairly succesful at it, beating the longest reigning tag-team champions of all time for the titles.
- The Hardy Boyz aren't really boys anymore. They were a young goth daredevil tag team back in the late '90s who got super-popular with the fans for their incredible stunts. They recently came back to the WWE after a long time away (in which Matt became a crazed English Vampire with time travelling abilities and Egyptian roots who would yell "DELETE" and call Jeff "Brother Nero", which you may hear the fans chant that during the match) and have been competing for the tag titles again.
- An "Iron Man match" is a match that ends at the time-limit. To win the match, you have to register more regular wrestling-match wins over the allotted time-frame than the opponents do.

WWE RAW Women's Title Match
Alexa Bliss (c) vs. Sasha Banks

- Sasha Banks, "The Boss", is one of the women who helped kick off the Women's Revolution in NXT. She's arguably the best woman wrestler in the company, is a cousin of Snoop Dawg, and can be a ratchet-ass bitch when she mad.
- Alexa Bliss was an overlooked part of the Women's Revolution in NXT until recently. She's tiny, references being The Goddess and the Wicked Witch of the WWE (she likes Disney stuff and Harley Quinn) and is a huuuuge bitch who keeps slipping out of losing the Women's Title.
- Like the Tag Titles, Raw, Smackdown and NXT all have their own Women's Titles, the only championships so far that women are eligible to win.

WWE Intercontinental Title Match
The Miz (w/Bo Dallas, Curtis Axel & Maryse) (c) vs. Dean Ambrose

- The Intercontinental Title is a secondary championship that used to be a spring-board to the WWE Title and the main event, but is sort of just a title for secondary guys these days.
- If you watched reality TV in the early '00s, you may recognize Mike Mizanin (probably most famous on The Real World). He's now The Miz, a successful wrestler who portrays himself as an A-List movie star (he stars in D-list movies made by WWE's film studios) and recently recruited an Entourage with two wrestlers who weren't getting a lot of TV time.
- Dean Ambrose is a bit of wasted potential. He can talk, has a past wrestling bloody death-matches and people loved him in the Shield, but he's kind of just a wacky goofball these days

Ambulance Match
Braun Strowman vs. Roman Reigns

- An Ambulance Match is where an Ambulance is parked near the entrance ramp. To win, you have to beat your opponent up enough so that you can put him in the back of an ambulance and close the door on him.
- Braun Strowman is supposed to be a bad guy, but he's a fucking monster who yells really loud and does ridiculous feats of strength and causes mayhem (the video will show you) and he's awesome
- Roman Reigns is the backstage corporate choice to be the #1 guy, but the WWE is arrogant (no competition) so they just kind of tell their fans "this it the #1 guy" and then plug their ears when the fans boo him out of the building.


WWE Universal Title Match
Brock Lesnar (w/Paul Heyman) (c) vs. Samoa Joe

- The Universal Title is the top championship on WWE Raw. It was only created a year or so ago, so there's not much lineage to it.
- If you watch UFC, you know who Brock Lesnar is. Lesnar is a "part-timer", someone older or popular enough to dictate their schedule to the WWE. He only wrestles a few matches per year, and takes any belts he's won with him.
- Samoa Joe was a guy the WWE passed on, and he spent years in the Indies kicking ass with a hard-hitting style and surprising agility. WWE finally brought him in, and this is something of a dream match
- Paul Heyman is Lesnar's sleazy mouth-piece, who has a history as one of the most innovative wrestling promoters from the late '90s.
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Re: Wrestling 101

Post by Madzimum Thrill on Fri Jul 14, 2017 11:41 pm

I've got a good example of Mexican Lucha Libre here

This is a tournament final match that happened just tonight. CMLL is the oldest active wrestling promotion in the world (dating back to 1933), all of its matches are 2 out of 3 falls (meaning a wrestler has to beat their opponent twice in order to win the full match). There isn't bells either and Luchadors don't do the tap-out more common in American wrestling, so you have to watch for the referee to wave that a fall is over. The "Universal Championship" is not a title belt like it is elsewhere, but an annual tournament held between all of the various belt-holding champions in the promotion where the winner wins a trophy. Each luchador comes to the ring with a second, a wrestler who assists them in between falls to recover and sometimes may play more of a role in the match itself

Spoiler:

Volador Jr vs Ultimo Guerrero

Volador Jr is probably the top good guy/tecnico who isn't an old-time legend in CMLL. (thought at 36, he himself is entering the years where many modern wrestlers start to fall apart). He's still one of the best high-flying wrestlers in the world (I think "Volador" even means "flying" in Spanish)

Ultimo Guerrero ("Ultimate Warrior") is a legend, 45 years old and still really good. He's a rudo/bad guy but he's been around so long and wrestled at such a high level that the Mexican fans cheer him anyways. He's the leader of a faction called "Los Guerreros Laguneros" ("Lagoon Warriors", with Laguneros being an extinct Aztec people from Northern Mexico).
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Re: Wrestling 101

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