Heels of Wrestling Episode 20: WWE vs Everybody in 2018

Episode 20: WWE vs. Everybody in 2018

Does WWE need to worry about competition in 2018?

Happy New Year! 2018 is poised to be a big year in wrestling. New Japan Pro Wrestling and Ring of Honor are heading into 2018 with full heads of steam. Wrestle Kingdom 12 was excellent and lived up to the hype. Ring of Honor Final Battle was great as well, and they’ll be pushing out their Women’s of Honor tournament soon. WWE will debut a women’s Royal Rumble this year and a Mixed Match Challenge. The following few weeks will say a lot for WWE for the next few months, can they keep pace with the independent scene?

In this episode, the guys give their review of Wrestle Kingdom 12, offer predictions for the winners of both WWE Royal Rumbles in 2018 and more.

Follow the Heels of Wrestling on Facebook and Instagram @TheHoWPod for more excellent wrestling content.

 

Is Randy Orton On His Way Out?

Is Randy Orton On His Way Out?

So for those of you that don’t know I was at Smackdown January 2nd in Orlando and was lucky enough to have ringside seats. For those of you that have never been that close before, one of the cool things about it is you get to hear the wrestlers talking. It’s like you get some insider information about their trade which I find fantastic.

A little backstory, on Monday Randy Orton’s special “Apex Predator”, was removed from the WWE network. For Smackdown, he was scheduled to wrestle in an Orlando Street fight match with Shinsuke Nakamura and Bobby Roode. The match never happened, and instead WWE put together a dark match with AJ Styles taking Randy’s place. Right before the match started, I heard AJ talking to one of the referees about how he could t believe “he” walked out.

Randy Orton w/ Shinsuke Nakamura and Sami Zayn

With this information, I take it that Orton is either on a short hiatus or maybe his contract is close to being up, or perhaps he was pissed about his content being taken down. Which I hope was a mistake. Randy Orton is a big name for the WWE and has a pretty good following at the events. Orton is a thirteen-time WWE world champion, a two-time tag team champion (one time with both Edge and Bray Wyatt) along with his one-time intercontinental championship.

The man is a star, and a legend at that. He also comes from a wrestling family, so whether or not he’s on his way out or just upset, this is a fence that Vincent Kennedy McMahon needs to fix. Could the WWE get by without Orton? Sure, but will the shows be the same without the Viper pulling his RKO’s out of nowhere?

All in all, I had a fantastic time at Smackdown and thought the ringside experience is something everyone who is a WWE fan should experience at least once. I got an autograph picture of the Uso’s I got a pair of socks that have every WWE title belt on them, I got to eat New Day pancakes and got to keep my ringside chair. Plus, I got a kind of cool scoop of insider information.

I hope Vince mends the Randy Orton wounds when such a big talent is upset there’s no telling what may happen with his storyline. This is Bobby Nagel, Heels outs!

 

 

Top 10 Battle Rap Wrestling Bars/Schemes of All Time

Top 10 Wrestling Bars/Schemes of All Time

“Wrestling bars never get old.” -PNut (PNut vs. Bonnie Godiva). This adage in battle rap has been echoed by many a fans, bloggers, analysts, and battle rappers themselves, and for the most part, it rings true. If you’re a male in America above the age of 18, odds are you’ll get a WWE Attitude era reference, and the bar/scheme will hit. Some rappers can even dip into newer wrestlers or older ones to get a reaction from the crowd. Salute those artists.

This list is a compilation of the top Wrestling bars to ever been spit on stage. Bars were chosen based on creativity, references used, and the uniqueness of the bar. I’ll be citing the battles the bars appear in, please check them out so these artists can get the buzz they deserve. Spoiler: No Goldberg/Spear or Owen Heart/Dying in the ring bars made this list unless they were part of an overall scheme.

Honorable Mentions

Stepeasy’s WWE Scheme (Stepeasy vs. Mookie Wilson)

Shotty Horroh’s Wrestling Scheme (Shotty Horroh vs. Arsonal)

Hollow Da Don’s Hogan/Shirt Rip Bars (Hollow Da Don vs. Illmaculate)

10. Chess’ People’s Elbow Bar (Chess vs. Tay Roc)

“We ain’t see Roc put on an arm on Chess since the People’s Elbow.”

Personal and effective. Chess attempts to strip Tay Roc of his believability with his guns. Tay Roc is famous for using gun bars, so saying he’d never lay one on Chess is an excellent counter move. I’m not a massive fan of Chess/Chest bars usually, but this one worked.

9. Mackk Myron’s Raw Bar (Mackk Myron vs. Ooops)

“And we ain’t have a change of plans/ I watched my daddy come up off Raw like Shane McMahon.”

Mackk is known for being a puncher, and this punch hit hard. The setup was unusual for a wrestling bar, and the flow it was perfect.

8. Michael Ice’s Wrestling Scheme (Michael Ice vs. FnF Veg Villa)

“I want to have heart just like you/Putting on a Big Show like this will have your heartbreak kid trying to outshine Michael’s (Shawn Michaels)

This bar was a self-name flip that went hard. The scheme going into it wasn’t super amazing, but this haymaker at the end upped its potency. It may have been a bit of a reach in wordplay, but Michael was able to pull off the cadence of the bar and sell it.

7. MadFlex’s Triple H Bar (Madflex vs. E Farrel)

“Weak today, hot tomorrow/Most of what I spit goes overheads; I’m Triple H with that water bottle.”

Reading the bar doesn’t do it as much justice as it deserves in context. MadFlex’s flow going into this bar was smooth, and the reference is smoother. Anyone who grew up watching the Attitude era remembers Triple H’s entrance and his apron side dowsing of water to air. The entrance is iconic and a solid reference to use. The irony for those whose heads this went over.

6. Xcel Nakamura Bar (Xcel vs. C Moneii)

“John and Will knew you’d be tortured right/So they was pulling strings before I entered, I’m Nakamura nice.”

It could be personal preference showing, but I love one-liner that pack so much into them. Without knowing who Nakamura is, the meaning of the bar should be clear. However, if you have seen now the epic that was Nakamura’s entrance theme music in New Japan Pro Wrestling and WWE NXT, then this bar hits even harder. Excellent way to be subtle with your bars.

5. Tsu Surf’s WWE Name Flip Bars (Tsu Surf vs. Hitman Holla)

“You was watching wrestling Raw, Rock, Chyna, Smackdown/ We was in the trap raw, rock, China getting smacked down.”

The bookend to an already tremendous third round by Surf, this bar rocked the crowd at the end. Surf’s bar is a personal haymaker with a nice WWE flip in there? Sounds like a perfect recipe for success in battle rap.

4. Shotty Horroh Scheme (Shotty Horroh vs. Arsonal II)

Standout Bar: “Poppin’ cans like an Austin match/Shit sounds like Ric Flair slappin’ chops when the chopper slaps.”

Shotty has to be top 3 when it comes to wrestling bars and scheme use, and for the majority, they hit pretty well. This scheme, however, was very well put together and interwove new and old references. While not as intricate as some references on the list, the pure aggression and delivery make this scheme stand out.

3. Xcel WWE Scheme (Xcel vs. Ro)

Standout Bar: “Cool, but it’ll be Jeff Hardy when I get there bro/Because they gonna end up with a Broken brother if I get near Ro.”

Intricate reference for the hardcore fans that get it, and old school references. If Xcel had kept going with the scheme, this could have easily been at the top spot. The first two bars of the scheme were some serious haymakers. The Hardy bars/name flip was massive. Xcel’s references are probably the most varied of higher tier spitters.

2. Dallas Cash’s PPV Scheme (Dallas Cash v. Tino)

Standout bar: “No way out, this a Roadblock, he getting tapered/ 6 in a pod, that revolver is my Elimination Chamber.”

The Wrestling, bar god. Cash was correct; most people just use wrestlers or the big PPV names in their schemes and bars. Without reaching, Dallas was able to use both old school and newer PPV titles in the scheme. Had the scheme ended with a bigger haymaker it probably would have been #1 on the list.

1. Gun Titles 2nd Round Scheme (Gun Titles vs. NWX)

Standout bar: “Well that’s what they told us/ If we cremate this bitch, his ashes will be Gold dust(Goldust)”

I felt this scheme in my wrestling soul. Mixing both old school and new school wrestlers, Surf knows his wrestling and adding some Roc influence was beautiful. It was haymaker after haymaker, and it included a personal flip? It was hard to not put this as number one on the best bars list. Tsu Surf and Xcel need to have a wrestling bar only battle.

Wanna give me a chair shot for my list? Spit your bars below, then head over to Twitter and Instagram to follow us @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod. Peace.

Markus X. Murden, Esq.

Senior Editor/Heels of Wrestling

 

My 10 Favorite Wrestlers of 2017

My 10 Favorite Wrestlers of 2017

The title pretty much says it all. My favorite wrestlers of 2017 based on well, how much I liked what you did in 2017. The Wrestlers on this list had either my favorite moments of the year, match of the year, feud of the year, or just put in amazing in-ring work consistently all year. This list is my thank you for your incredible dedication to your craft this year.

Honorable Mentions

Kota Ibushi

Asuka

Will Osprey

King Ricochet

10. Marty Scurll

Every list needs a villain. With possibly my favorite entrance in wrestling, Marty Scurll has made his presence felt globally in 2017. The current IWGP Junior Heavyweight champion had classic matches in Ring of Honor, Defiant, and New Japan. To be a standout in an impressive Junior Heavyweight division is no small feat. Marty’s career can only go up from here. His association with Bullet Club will help to make sure his already hot career will stay stoked. Here’s to him breaking more fingers in 2018.

9. The Miz

The most underutilized Superstar on the WWE roster in 2017. The Miz has poured his soul into the Intercontinental Championship, into WWE, and into everything he does. Why WWE has never rewarded this man with a great feud is beyond me. It’s like they keep a glass ceiling on him because they know he’d blow their Raw poster boys out the water if they didn’t. His mic skills in WWE are matched by few and in-ring he can keep up with the best of them. The IC Belt just isn’t the same if he doesn’t have it, the mark of a true Superstar.

8. AJ Styles

If you take away AJ Styles from WWE in 2017, there would have only been a handful of great singles matches this year. AJ doubles that number and then some. The man is magic in the ring in WWE and is in the right spot with the WWE Championship. Putting on classics with Cena and Lesnar he’s shown to be the best in the company. He elevates everyone in a match with him and is invaluable to the company by doing so.

7. The Young Bucks

BE ELITE, BE BE ELITE. I love them. They’re disrupting the wrestling landscape in 2017 like very few people would dare to do, and I love them for it. Nick and Matt have been able to market themselves and gain exposure in ways no other act has. They’ve managed to piss people off just by being able to do in the ring what others can’t. That’s never a bad thing. They’re heading into WrestleKingdom 12 looking to stake a claim as the greatest Junior Heavyweight Tag Team of all time. It’s hard to argue against it.

6. Tetsuya Naito

The man who grew up with the luchadors now has a chance to sit on top of New Japan after January 4th in the Tokyo Dome. Some may not like his style, but it’s such a great Heel gimmick. I’ve enjoyed watching Naito climb up the ranks this year. His matches with Okada, Omega, and of course with Ibushi have been the match of the year candidates and rightfully so. Recently received the 2017 Japan wrestling MVP award he’s joined rare company in becoming a 2-time recipient. 2018 may be the time for Naito to sit on top New Japan Pro Wrestling.

5. Kazuchika Okada

The Rainmaker. There’s a strong argument to be made that Okada has the best in-ring ability of anyone in wrestling right now, and Okada adds more evidence to the argument every time he hit the ring in 2017. Whether it’s with Evil, Naito, Omega, Cody Rhodes, and the list goes on Okada is always on his A game. His proficiency in the ring is incredible. With Okada set to defend his IWGP Heavyweight title against Naito at WrestleKingdom 12, it’s looking to be another fantastic 2018 for Okada.

4. The New Day

NEW DAY ROCKS! NEW DAY ROCKS! One half of the best thing going for WWE in 2017, it’s The New Day. Though they took a back seat this year to put over The Bar on Raw and The Usos on Smackdown, they were always on their A game. Some fans think 2018 will see more singles pushes for The New Day, if this is true, I just hope they don’t break them up. They’re just on too hot of a run to ever derail them.

3. Chris Jericho

No one in wrestling has had quite the ability to make a sudden impact like Chris Jericho does. He came back to WWE in 2016 and immediately had the most over gimmick with The List of Jericho, and then had the best promo segment of the year with the Festival of Friendship with Kevin Owens in 2017. Jericho is just a goldmine of ideas and now he’s aiming them at NJPW. His match with Kenny Omega for the IWGP US Championship at Wrestlekingdom 12 will arguably be the biggest match of 2018 and the year hasn’t even started. It will be hard to top this match, but if anyone can, Jericho will. The Alpha knows how to stop and put on a show, and wrestling wouldn’t be the same without him.

2. The Usos

Day One Ish. The Usos have become the premier tag team of The WWE in 2017. Carrying the Smackdown brand all year, they were the showstopper of every PPV they were on. WWE is disrespecting the Tag Team division by not showing these guys like a hot commodity. I only pity them because there’s no one on Smackdown who can challenge them like The New Day, so where do they go after them? A brand switch in 2018 will do them some good, just as long as the Uso Penitentiary comes with them.

1. Kenny Omega

Kenny Omega currently is The Guy in wrestling. 2017 was the beginnig of the era of Omega. I’m not sure what else I have to say here. He and Okada’s trilogy may be the best in-ring trilogy ever. He’s already got the hottest match of 2018 booked. The Cleaner just seems to be unstoppable at this point. Backed by the hottest stable in The Bullet Club, there may be no limit for Kenny’s potential. He’s got the attitude, the mic work, and the in-ring ability to make himself and anyone else look good. He’s the best in the world, and he knows it, damn I love a good Heel.

Think your end of the year list is better than mine? Say something below, then head over to Twitter and Instagram to follow us @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod. Peace.

Markus X. Murden, Esq.

Senior Editor/Heels of Wrestling

@MXMurden on Twitter and Instagram

 

The 10 Best WWE NXT Superstars 2017

The 10 Best WWE NXT Superstars 2017

When I compiled my list of The 10 Best WWE Superstars of 2017, I thought about including NXT superstars on the list, but it seemed unfair after thinking about it. With not the same level of TV exposure and storyline weight, the parameters of compiling this list should be different.

These superstars I’ve picked due to shown potential, growth in NXT this year, and in-ring match quality. NXT, for the most part, has showcased tremendous talent this year and I have nothing but the best of hopes for these NXT Superstars.

Honorable Mentions

Peyton Royce

Street Profits

Drew McIntyre

Bobby Roode

10. Asuka

Had Asuka been on NXT for the full year, she’d probably be higher on this list.  However, Asuka got injured and was brought back on the main roster on Raw. Before leaving she left us with two NXT classics in her Last Woman Standing match with Nikki Cross and her last title defense against Ember Moon. Thank you for all you did in NXT, Asuka.

Notable Match: Asuka vs. Ember Moon (NXT Takeover: Orlando)

WWE NXT Superstar Asuka

9. SAni†y

It’s hard to find someone who can talk on the mic and has great in-ring ability. It’s even harder to find that combo in someone who can also be convincing as a cult leader. But Sanity has it in Eric Young. Young is backed by surprisingly high flier Alexander Wolfe and muscle man Killian Dain, both who have become tremendous talents in NXT. Sanity is well equipped to face any opponent in the ring and beat them. SAni†y needs to be called up to the main roster soon as a faction to be feared right off the bat.

Notable Match: Sanity vs. Authors of Pain (NXT Takeover: Brooklyn III)

WWE NXT Superstars Sanity (Dane, Young, Wolfe, and Cross)

8. Authors of Pain

Anchored by Paul Ellering, these two have a chance to make a shakeup in the current WWE tag team scene. There hasn’t been a duo of strong men who got over as a tag team in WWE in a long time. We can only hope the best for Akam and Rezar as they go forward and destroy everything in their path to hopeful main roster gold.

Notable Match: Authors of Pain vs. #DIY vs. The Revival (NXT Takeover: Orlando)

WWE NXT Superstars Authors of Pain

7. Johnny Gargano

Johnny Wrestling started the year as half of D.I.Y. a tremendous technical wrestling team with Tommaso Ciampa. The two had classic tag team matches, but then the latter turned on the former. Now Johnny is on a singles run and is already the #1 contender for Cien Almas’ title after winning a brutal 4-way match at the last NXT of 2017. The Sky’s the limit for Johnny. Let’s just hope that he doesn’t end up on 205 Live.

Notable Match: Johnny Gargano vs. Aleister Black vs. Killian Dain vs. Lars Sullivan (NXT 12/22)

WWE NXT Superstar Johnny Gargano

6. Roderick Strong

Roderick Strong is an excellent talent. His in-ring ability is great, but it seems like he’s missing an edge or something else to him to give him that push. He has a very Dean Malenko type feel without the intensity behind it. His technical brilliance has got him over with the crowd, but this makes me worry about his future main roster showing. Hopefully, he can remain in a good light.

Notable Match: Roderick Strong vs. Hideo Itami (NXT Takeover: Brooklyn III)

WWE NXT Superstar Roderick Strong

5. Velveteen Dream

The star of untapped potential on this list. Velveteen Dream has sky-rocketed up my list of favorites this year. The pace at which he’s developing in-ring is phenomenal. His character work is already top notch, and the only question is will WWE let this character translate onto the main roster. If they do, they’ve got a bonafide star on their hands here. Say his name.

Notable Match: Velveteen Dream vs. Aleister Black (NXT Takeover: Wargames)

WWE NXT Superstar Velveteen Dream

4. Nikki Cross

Cross has been my favorite surprise in NXT. After scrambling around for a while as a jobber, she found her place in Sanity, but just lumping her in with the men didn’t do her year the justice it deserved.  She is putting on fantastic matches in the women’s division including a Fatal 4-Way match for the vacant title and a historic Iron Woman match with Asuka. If WWE books her right she can be a menacing heel for the Women’s division on the main roster, something it desperately needs. And with Sanity behind her, it makes her even scarier. Nikki can and is a rare combination for WWE and one that can have massive appeal.

Notable Match: Nikki Cross vs. Asuka (Last Woman Standing Match)

WWE NXT Superstar Nikki Cross

3. Andrade Cien Almas w/ Zelina Vega

Quietly the best story of NXT this year, Almas has found the recipe with success with his manager Zelina Vega by his side. Almas has turned into a fantastic heel, and his manager can work the mic with ease. I hope this pair doesn’t get the Rusev and Lana treatment and get split up while they’re hot. WWE needs a good management pair, and these two can be it.

Notable Match: Andrade Cien Almas vs. Drew McIntyre (NXT Takeover: Wargames)

WWE NXT Superstars Andrade Cien Almas and Zelina Vega

2. Ember Moon

The woman who was behind Asuka all year long is now finally atop of the NXT Women’s division, and she’s earned her position. I wish we could have seen her get a proper 1-2-3 over Asuka for it, but we’ll have to settle for the Empress coronating her as champion. NXT is about watching people grow and come into their own and Ember Moon has done just that. WWE should give Ember a strong title run to set her up for main roster success in 2018. Ember will be a boon to either division she enters on the main roster, and I’ll be happy when it happens.

Notable Match: Ember Moon vs. Kairi Sane vs. Peyton Royce vs. Nikki Cross (NXT Takeover: Wargames)

WWE NXT Superstar Ember Moon

1. Aleister Black

Talk about a complete package out the gate. Aleister Black has put on a show all year long in NXT. He’s so over it’s hard to put him in the title picture and not have it be a predetermined outcome. Black may need to be called up in 2018 relatively soon if they don’t plan on giving him a lengthy title run. Black is a gift horse that will kick the teeth out of your mouth, and Vince needs to let him bring the Black Mass to the main roster in 2018.

Notable Match: Aleister Black vs. Hideo Itami (NXT Takeover: Brooklyn III)

WWE NXT Superstar Aleister Black

Agree or Disagree? Leave a comment below. Then head over to Twitter and Instagram to follow us @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod. Peace.

Markus X. Murden, Esq.

Senior Editor/Heels of Wrestling

@MXMurden on Twitter and Instagram

10 Best WWE Superstars of 2017

10 Best WWE Superstars of 2017

2017 was a rough year for WWE Superstars. There were plagues of injuries, subpar storylines, and pushes that halted. However, some Superstars did become brighter in 2017, and others kept their remarkable paces going. The Superstars on the list are a mix of the best in-ring matches, promos, storylines, and overall entertainment value of the wrestler. These are those Superstars.

Honorable Mentions

Rusev and Aiden English

Randy Orton

Asuka

Sami Zayn

Chris Jericho

10. Brock Lesnar

BROCK LESNAR. The man was so busy defending WWE against the Universe that he shows up when he wants. When he does, there’s usually carnage and a lot of big moves to go with it. Holding the red strap since Wrestlemania, the Beast Incarnate may keep the belt until mania, and there’s not much any mortal man could do about it.

Notable Match: AJ Styles vs. Brock Lesnar (Clash of Champions)

WWE Superstar Brock Lesnar

9. Kevin Owens

The former Universal Champion had a quietly excellent year in WWE. The breakup of him and Jericho was the story of WWE heading into Mania, and Chris left putting Owens over.  Ownes had a period of being saddled without a great opponent who could bring out his best in-ring work. He and Zayn have been fantastic together at the end of the year, and I hope he gets into the WWE title picture very soon in 2018. He’s probably the best heel Smackdown has at the moment in their single’s division.

Notable Match: Kevin Owens vs. Shane McMahon (Hell in a Cell)

8. The Bar (Sheamus and Cesaro)

Collectively Sheamus and Cesaro have helped to keep Raw’s tag team division at a good caliber. The two European born stars have gelled into something great together. Their seemingly year-long feud with The Shield is hopefully coming to an end, but with the current booking, who knows?

Notable Match: The Bar vs. The Shield (Raw 11/7)

WWE Superstars The Bar

7. Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins (The Shield)

After the brand shakeup in 2017, it was almost impossible to see one of these men without the other one. I thought about separating them on this list, but their best run was once they joined forces. Their matches against the Bar were tremendous and after the inclusion of their third wheel Roman Reigns, these two still shined together, especially in Reigns’ absence. Hope you come back stronger than ever, Dean.

Notable Match: The Shield w/ Kurt Angle vs. Braun Strowman, Miz, Kane, and The Bar (Summer Slam)

WWE Superstars Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins

6. Roman Reigns

The current Intercontinental champion Roman Reigns had a great year. At Wrestlemania, he beat the Undertaker being his highlight of the year. Roman’s being kept in the chamber so he can slay Lesnar at Mania and we all know it. However in-ring he’s had some great moments and his “This is my Yard Now” promo may be the best of his career.

Notable Match: Roman Reigns vs. Undertaker (Wrestlemania)

WWE Superstar Roman Reigns

5. Braun Strowman

BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAUN. Talk about a breakthrough year for a Superstar. Strowman was let loose from the Wyatt Family and spent most of the year laying waste to Roman Reigns. After having his momentum halted by Brock, hopefully, next year brings some gold his way.

Notable Match: Braun Strowan vs. Roman Reigns (Ambulance Match) (Great Balls of Fire)

4. The New Day

After their historic title reign was ended by The Bar, The New Day seemed aimless on Raw. Then they were moved to Smackdown and had the feud of the year with The Usos. It’s only a question of whether The New Day should be separated or kept going, either way, all these guys are incredible talents, and I look forward to everything they do.

Notable Match: The New Day vs. The Usos (Battleground)

3. AJ Styles

It feels like AJ Styles spent most of 2017 in subpar feuds that ended up with fantastic matches. A run with Baron Corbin made him cool off a bit, but high level matches with Lesnar, Cena, Balor, and more established Styles was high on this list. Plus he somehow made Jinder look okay for 15+ minutes. The Phenomenal one is the current WWE Champion and I hope 2018 brings memorable feuds for him while he’s in this position.

Notable Match: AJ Styles vs. John Cena (Royal Rumble)

WWE Superstar AJ Styles

2. The Miz

The only reason Miz isn’t #1 on this list is that he didn’t have a remarkable match this year. The Miz’s mic work, in-ring psychology, and just overall wrestling business sense aren’t matched by many this year. Taking him off of Smackdown was a massive mistake by WWE, he owned that show and Talking Smack. I can only hope The Miz comes back, gets his IC Title again, and keeps his fantastic run going. Thank you, Miz.

Notable Feud: The Miz vs. WWE

1. The Usos

Welcome to the Uso Penitentiary! 2017 was the year of The Usos. At the beginning of the year, The Miz and The Usos made Smackdown the program to watch. Heel Usos have been the best makeover in WWE in quite some time. The rap battle promos, the matches with New Day, American Alpha, and others have solidified The Usos as my favorite Superstars of the Year. If WWE had any sense, they’d give these guys the main event match at a PPV. Every Smackdown PPV slumped after their matches, and they’d usually be the first ones. I’m all in on some Day One Ish, and I hope WWE gives them their due come Wrestlemania 2018.

Notable Match: The Usos vs. New Day (Hell in a Cell)

WWE Superstars The Usos

Agree or Disagree? Leave a comment below. Then head over to Twitter and Instagram to follow us @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod. Peace.

Markus X. Murden, Esq.

Senior Editor/Heels of Wrestling

@MXMurden on Twitter and Instagram

10 Best WWE Matches of 2017

10 Best WWE Matches of 2017

2017 is in the books for WWE and all the booking decisions for the year are now part of history, for better or worse. So what matches shined in WWE in 2017? There were some spectacular matches this year, and it’s time they get their recognition. Here are my top 10 matches from WWE for 2017.

Honorable Mentions

AJ Styles vs. Finn Balor (Tables, Ladders, and Chairs)

Braun Strowman vs. Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe (Summer Slam)

Braun Strowman vs. Roman Reigns Ambulance Match (Great Balls of Fire)

10. Aj Styles vs. Brock Lesnar (Survivor Series)

AJ Styles will bring the best out of anyone in a match. This match was no exception as we finally got to see Brock Lesnar in a real match, something we haven’t seen in quite some time. This survivor series brawl pitted Universal champion against WWE champion to see which Brand had the better belt holder. Brock ultimately picked up the win, but not before selling hard for AJ in what was a major highlight of a mostly dull PPV.

9. Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns (Royal Rumble)

I wish this match had more context to it, but it felt like two feuds just colliding for one night, and it worked. Kevin Owens and Reigns beat the hell out of each other as Jericho watched on from in a shark cage above the ring. Ultimately a run in by Braun Strowman led to KO keeping his Universal Title.

8. Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match (Money in the Bank)

Despite a questionable winner, this match did deliver. We got to see a great showdown with AJ Styles and Nakamura in the middle of the ring at one point, and it worked the crowd great. Baron Corbin ultimately left with the briefcase, and well history didn’t like that much I guess. In hindsight, this match may have foreshadowed so much for Smackdown over the year.

7. Pete Dunne vs. Tyler Bate (NXT 12/20)

Pete Dunne and Tyler Bate put on a clinic in singles matches this year. Right before the year is over, they decided to put on another great performance. The fact they’re not on the main roster or featured more frequently is a crime.

6. Ember Moon vs. Asuka (NXT Takeover: Brooklyn III)

Asuka’s dominance is evident in the women’s division. But that hit a road bump right before she departed NXT with Ember Moon. The now current NXT women’s champion Moon took Asuka to her limit. The second match of theirs this year, it improved on the first one with the chemistry between the two. Asuka went over in the end, but this match made Ember Moon even hotter.

5. Authors of Pain vs. D.I.Y. vs. The Revival (NXT Takeover: Orlando)

This match might be my favorite tag team match ever. It had every element that you would want. The addition of AoP might have seemed shaky at first, but boy did they deliver in the match. D.I.Y. and the Revival put on a technical clinic, with the Authors physically dominating the match mixed in. If you want to see a well-scripted match that plays to each wrestler’s strengths, then watch.

4. The Usos vs. The New Day (Hell in a Cell)

This was the year of Tag Teams in WWE. With the men’s singles division being mapped out until Wrestlemania, it was up to the tag division to add some intrigue to WWE in 2017, and they did not disappoint. The Usos and New Day put on a show this year with their feud, promos, and matches. Big E and Xavier Woods took on the Usos in a Cell, and there was carnage aplenty. As usual for them this year, this match was the star of the night and a gem for the year.

3. Tyler Bates vs. Pete Dunne (NXT Takeover: Chicago)

Remember how I said these two are amazing? This was the match that kicked it off for them this year in WWE. Completely stealing the show at Takeover Chicago, these two men put on an in-ring clinic here. Easily the best technical match in WWE this year.

2. The Usos vs. The New Day (Battleground)

This match kicked off the best Feud of the year, and it was a barn burner. The more agile members of the New Day Woods and Kofi Kingston took on the Usos, and the aerobatics were on display. Please watch this match and then watch it again. Both these teams deserve so much for rescuing the summer for WWE in 2017, and I hope everyone appreciates it.

1. John Cena vs. AJ Styles

The match that just five years ago people would have told you-you were crazy for saying it would happen. A verifiable Dream Match that many had thought would be in their fantasies. The poster boy of WWE John Cena versus the phenomenal AJ Styles did not disappoint in any fashion. Fantastic in-ring work, beautiful near falls, and great storytelling. If you had doubts about Big Match John before this match, they should be gone. AJ Styles is currently the best in-ring worker in WWE; it’s not close. His ability to elevate his opponents is a rarity in WWE and the sport in general. AJ can have a significant match with anyone, but this is a Classic and best WWE match of 2017.

Agree or Disagree? Leave a comment below. Then head over to Twitter and Instagram to follow us @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod. Peace.

Markus X. Murden, Esq.

Senior Editor/Heels of Wrestling

@MXMurden on Twitter and Instagram

 

Heels of Wrestling Episode 17: Can WWE Be Elite Again?

Episode 17: Can WWE Be Elite Again?

The Heels give their final opinions and predictions for WWE’s Survivor Series 2017 and NXT Takeover: Wargames card. We then debate if WWE can compete with the juggernaut of Bullet Club and The Elite.

If you want to support Heels along with us, make sure to subscribe to our channel @TheHoWPod on Twitter Instagram and  Facebook.

Heels of Wrestling Episode 16: Jericho and Omega

Episode 16: Jericho and Omega

A dream match between Chris Jericho and Kenny Omega will take place at Wrestle Kingdom next year. Will it live up to the hype? And what last-minute changes to Survivor Series are WWE contemplating?

As always, like, share, and leave a comment or argue with me below. Then make sure to subscribe to our channels @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod on Twitter and Instagram and like us on Facebook.

Heels of Wrestling Episode 15: Surviving the Wargames

Episode 15: Surviving the Wargames

Next weekend all of WWE will be at war. We’ll have the battle of the big brands when Raw and Smackdown collide on WWE Survivor Series, and NXT Wargames looks to put the best of NXT against one another. The Heels go into their predictions for Survivor Series and NXT Wargame cards and whether the cards will live up to expectations. The Heels also air their grievances with WWE creative. Who will come out victorious over the weekend of Wargames?

As always, like, share, and leave a comment or argue with me below. Then make sure to subscribe to our channels @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod on Twitter and Instagram and like us on Facebook.