To get as much content in the can as possible
before Steve Corino Total Lockdown restrictions mean wrestling promotions can no longer make
wrestling shows, WWE have been taping the next two weeks of Raw, SmackDown, NXT and,
yes, even WrestleMania, over the last few days.
And somehow, even with skeleton crews working on individual matches, with tapings being
done in different locations like the Performance Center and Full Sail University, WrestleMania
spoilers are apparently being leaked. Because tell a friend. Tell a gram. Tell a
wrestler. After WWE’s first day of WrestleMania tapings
yesterday, with the rest to be finished today before the Orlando total lockdown order comes
into effect at midnight, the very reliable WrestleVotes tweeted out to say they had received
WrestleMania spoilers, but would not be tweeting them out. Good guy WrestleVotes.
But despite WrestleVotes not posting those results, if spoilers have gotten out with
just a relative handful of people knowing them, that means they’ll likely appear online
soon. So tread very, very carefully if you don’t want to see them.
But the Internet is all I have in these hard times, hard times!
Well the full 90s X-Men cartoon is on Disney+ That’s what I’m doing. And I’m totally
fine. Speaking of the Too Big For One Night WrestleMania,
insert joke about Daniel Bryan’s balls at Elimination Chamber. Bryan is set for an Intercontinental
Championship match against Sami Zayn for one of those shows, with new bestie Drew Gulak
at his side. But once that match is filmed, which was either
yesterday or today, he’ll have to enter a period of quarantine before heading home
to his family – as Bryan’s wife, Brie Bella, revealed on the latest episode of her Bella
Twins podcast: “My husband has an autoimmune disease. He
also fought asthma really bad when he was young. He was always sick when he was a kid
and I’ll admit, I lost sleep last night. “I feel bad because he’s over there and
when he comes home, we’re gonna have him be put up in a hotel and our Naturopath, Dr.
Jane, he’s gonna kind of work with Bryan to see if we see symptoms before he comes
home to Bird and I.” Bryan won’t be the only WWE star self-quarantining
for precautionary reasons, as both Rey Mysterio and Dana Brooke were sent home from the Performance
Center tapings last week – with Mysterio’s planned WrestleMania US title match against
Andrade being scrapped, and Brooke having to be dropped from the six-pack challenge
for the SmackDown women’s title. Before Brie revealed Bryan would be self-quarantining,
Wade Keller of PWTorch reported a third name who was not currently showing symptoms had
done the same. Keller said that since the third name had not been publicly released,
he wouldn’t reveal them, but confirmed it was taken as a preventative measure, and they
currently weren’t on the WrestleMania card. This could be Bryan, then, as his match with
Zayn won’t be confirmed until Friday’s SmackDown, or it could be another WWE star.
Even with one set of tapings already filmed, though, WWE are reportedly no closer to determining
what each respective night’s main events will be, with Fightful now reporting Night
One being either Becky Lynch vs Shayna Baszler and Roman Reigns vs Goldberg.
Fightful writes the original plan was for the women’s match to close the first night,
but there’s since been a push backstage for Reigns vs Goldberg to have that spot instead.
With everything taped in advance, WWE can move the match order around after the fact,
based on the quality of the matches.
Bryan Alvarez has revealed WWE have already filmed the top matches for the show, leaving
the undercard matches for tonight’s set of tapings. One would assume that would mean
that the big title matches, and blood feuds between Orton and Edge, Cena and The Fiend
and AJ and the Undertaker would have been recorded yesterday.
But it’s not just the main events that are undecided, as the actual card itself is still
reportedly not finalised, with PWInsider reporting more “random, sorta zany matches” to be
announced. Because of Steve Corino, the entire WrestleTalk
office has been working from home, which is why I’m on every video. And because of that,
I can’t do a full review of NXT this week, because I can’t physically watch everything
and record all this at the same time. I will have a full review of AEW shortly, because
I’m watching that anyway for the WrestleTalk Podcast later today. And because Tony Khan
pays me, just so much money. But Pete and Laurie will have a full NXT review podcast
up on this channel soon. But for a recap for those wanting to know,
here’s what happened on last night’s NXT episode.
Now TakeOver: Tampa Bay isn’t happening, the card’s matches will be taking place
on regular old NXT starting from next week, so this episode was spent building towards
them. Io Shirai made her return from injury to attack
Xia Li, beat Aaliyah and get a spot in the NXT Women’s Championship Number One Contendership
Ladder match. That’s so many words. As did Candice LeRae by beating Kayden Carer.
Matt Riddle beat Roderick Strong, for Malcolm Bivens to finally debut on NXT managing the
new tag team of Rinku Singh and Saurav Gurjar, who took out both Riddle and Strong.
Triple H said Gargano and Ciampa’s feud will finally end in two weeks time. But then,
as the three of them stood there with the show going to black, a vignette played for
Killer Kross showing him in person as the minute hand moved to 12 to end the show.
And here’s what happened on the 25th March’s AEW Dynamite…
The first match saw Cody leave the commentary desk and kiss the ring announcer. What kind
of social distancing is th-oh, right she’s his wife. To beat Jimmy Havoc in the latest
example of Cody making his opponents look awesome.
Jake the Snake then appeared on the video screen challenging Cody to a match with Lance
Archer. Cody deflected the invitation, saying Lance can’t just come into AEW and get a
match with him. He’s got to work his way up – which he’ll start with his in-ring
debut next week. After Darby Allin’s latest black-and-white
short film where he sets fire to pictures of the Inner Circle – that guy really likes
fire – he took on Kip Sabian in a decent TV match, where Cody proved he’s not just great
at putting over guys in the ring. He can do it from commentary too.
Darby won with his new Last Supper leg lock pin combination – which somewhat protected
Kip in defeat. Jake Hager had an impressive video package
blending his AEW power spots with his MMA fights, and then squashing Chico Adams in
the cuddle sleeper! Jon Moxley attacked Hager afterwards as revenge
for the Inner Circle powerbombing him off the stage, and promised he’d come for the
rest of the faction soon. There are, of course, far more significant impacts of Steve Corino
on society, but to focus on our wrestling bubble, it’s such a shame Moxley’s momentum
from his world title win has been partly derailed by the outbreak.
The Dark Order’s recently unveiled Exalted One Brodie Lee came out with just one crawler
next – because cults aren’t really built for social distancing – where he wrestled
an excellent squash match, really getting over his impressive moveset of brainbusters,
Blackhole Slams and his awesome Wyatt Family-referencing finisher of a Sister Abigail discuss clothesline.
What was most interesting, however, was the look at Brodie’s new character in the preceding
video package. Lee was presented as a mob boss rather than a cult leader, not letting
Dark Order members John Silver and Alex Reynolds eat their dinner until he’d finished his,
and then throwing them out for sneezing. That’s not actually a common symptom, Brodie, you
wanna look for new, continuous dry coughs. It was like Brodie was channeling Vince McMahon,
which is an interesting evolution of the Dark Order gimmick. Hopefully it will work with
what’s come before, as Brodie as the leader was never the original plan.
Kenny Omega then beat Sammy Guevarra in a terrific match to retain his AAA Mega championship
– I forgot he had that title too. The last five minutes had some tremendous sequences.
And the great thing about Sammy is that it never really feels like his opponents beat
him. It’s his own arrogance and showboating, which really protects him, even though he
actually loses a lot. And the main event saw Broken Matt Hardy have
a one-on-one confrontation with Chris Jericho, after Hardy appeared at the top of the arena
and teleported down the stands to the ring. Which… I didn’t like.
It was a cool visual, it fits Matt’s broken world, and hey, there’s no fans, so who
really cares? But I think it’s ultimately misjudged and I hope Matt’s supernatural
abilities don’t appear in AEW reality ever again.
Having Matt believe he is a 3,000 year old vampire is a complex, interesting character.
But having the show of AEW believe he’s a 3,000 year old vampire is hokey and undermines
everything else it’s trying to do. It’s like if PAC started selling Orange Cassidy’s
superkicks, as undeniably deadly as they are. If you take the teleportation out of this
segment, it was actually fascinating, with Matt and Jericho saying they’ve seen each
other live through so many different personalities – but the same insecurities persist through
them all. Jericho eventually slaps him, starting a brawl
with Guevara, Kenny and Cody to close the show.
What do you think of supernatural Matt Hardy in AEW? Let me know in the comments because
I’ll be replying to people FROM OUTTA NOWHERE! And vote with your rating of the show by clicking
the i above my head. This was a decent episode, with great in-ring
wrestling, and Brodie Lee starting an interesting new chapter for the Dark Order. This week’s
Dynamite is ⅗. Bray Wyatt’s WrestleMania pitch has been
leaked! Click the video on the right now to find out his crazy John Cena plan. And what
are the 10 greatest NXT TakeOvers of all time? Click the video below that for Adam Blampied’s
latest list. I’ve been Oli Davis, and that was wrestling.