Hello and welcome to the WrestleTalk STACKED News, I am Chopper Pete Quinnell. Luke is still in Japan but he’s back on Monday, so I promise this is the last time you’ve got to deal with this face in his absence, though he did leave this cardigan here…
Please give us a like and a subscribe and share this video around, as it’s the best way to help us beat the YouTube algorithm and help support us as we attempt to grow this channel.
Today’s top story involves this past week’s episode of WWE Raw, which featured another NXT invasion and it was fine. Totally fine.
Elsewhere on the show was the much more controversial decision of Natalya tapping out Asuka in a tag team match, while AJ Styles picked up yet another victory over Humberto Carrillo, his third in one week.
The reason for these odd, and downright damaging finishes, has been revealed and I don’t know if it now makes more or less sense.
According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer, neither of these were the planned finishes when they were first conceived. Asuka was originally supposed to tap out Natalya, and Humberto was actually supposed to pin AJ Styles, so what happened? Why did we in fact get the exact opposite of those finishes?
Firstly in the women’s match, the reported reason that finish was inverted was because of all the positive press Natalya had been receiving following her match with Lacey Evans at Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia, and WWE didn’t want to derail that momentum. Asuka was originally due to win in order to set up a Raw Women’s Championship match with Becky Lynch, which was the direction they were heading prior to this Monday.
The feeling was that an errant loss in a tag match wouldn’t derail Asuka’s momentum, but it does beg the question, why didn’t Kairi Sane take the tap out loss? Or better yet, why not have Natalya & Charlotte face different people than the Kabuki Warriors in order to keep Natalya’s momentum up without having to beat your Women’s Tag Team Champions?
Or even better yet, don’t have Natalya and Charlotte team up at all. Because they don’t work as a tag team. At all. I personally am not so sure about it derailing Asuka’s momentum, as it’s a real sticking point with Asuka’s character. I guess it makes sense, the only other move she’s tapped to is the Figure 8, her kryptonite is old school submissions! Makes total sense, I take it all back.
As for AJ and Carrillo on Raw, as previously mentioned, Carrillo was scheduled to get the pinfall victory over AJ, setting up a feud for the US title in the process. This would be a story of Humberto finally overcoming AJ, who had beaten him repeatedly in the previous weeks. But that didn’t happen, so what changed?
NXT Spoilers for this week coming in, because they relate to this story strongly, NXT Spoilers…NXT Spoilers. Click ahead if you don’t want them.
As you may have seen on this week’s episode of NXT, The OC invaded the black and gold brand, cementing the idea of an OC vs Undisputed Era feud at Survivor Series. While that match is now unlikely to happen at the show, considering Bobby Fish & Kyle O’Reilly are competing against The Revival and The Viking Raiders, The OC vs Undisputed Era is now supposedly going to be moved to an episode of NXT.
That’s important, because they then felt that NXT talent couldn’t have another loss on their home turf so to speak. Tegan Nox & Dakota Kai lost to the Kabuki Warriors recently, so they didn’t then want another NXT talent losing out to a main roster act.
But they did want The OC to look strong heading into this week’s episode as an invading force, so they flipped the result of the six-man tag match on Raw. And since The Street Profits are being protected, the loss fell to Humberto once again. How’s that for some convoluted booking.
Let’s push Humberto and Asuka but let’s also put them in matches where they can’t win. Flawless plan. Once again, it begs the question, why not swap out Humberto in this match? Why not have a Cedric Alexander, an Apollo Crews, a Cesaro, I don’t know. The creative process in WWE remains a mystery.
But now it’s time for some updates on a whole bunch of WWE injuries! I probably should have said that with less pep shouldn’t I?
According to PWInsider, Cedric Alexander had been dealing with a minor back injury as of late, however he was medically cleared to return on this past Monday’s Raw, hence his singles loss to Buddy Murphy.
Xavier Woods is currently out with an Achilles tendon tear, and his reported return date is now not until the summer of 2020. He underwent surgery on October 25, and is in the process of recovery now. Speedy recovery ol’ buddy ol’ pal. Also Xavier put out a tweet asking for channels to collaborate with alongside UpUpDownDown, and I don’t mean to be presumptuous, but HOW ABOUT WRESTLETALK XAVIER. Go and tweet Xavier that he should collaborate with us! I mean, he won’t, but do it anyway!
Alexa Bliss hasn’t been seen on WWE TV for quite some time, and the reported reason for this is because of a shoulder injury. According to PWInsider, as of yesterday morning, she was not medically cleared to return as of yet, and she was due to have her shoulder evaluated by doctors in the new few weeks. Speedy recovery Alexa.
But in more positive news, Sasha Banks is coming back! Banks has not been medically cleared to compete since Hell in a Cell when she faced Becky Lynch, however she is returning tonight on SmackDown to face off against Nikki Cross, whom she cost her match against Bayley last week before Shayna Baszler attacked.
Speaking of NXT, there’s been yet more teases of some main roster stars jumping ship to the black and gold, with Cesaro responding to a tweet made by Triple H, who invited any more main roster stars to come through their doors, to which Cesaro simply put a picture of himself backstage at an NXT show already.
This next one gets a little more convoluted, so bear with me here. A supposed tease for Luke Harper to join NXT has come in the form of another tweet, but it’s not from Luke Harper. It comes from Fandango, who tweeted a picture of Oney Lorcan wearing an NXT jacket, and tagged Luke Harper in the photo. I genuinely have no idea what any of this means but…Luke Harper to NXT confirmed?
Maybe if those moves to NXT happened, they could finally tip NXT over the edge and beat AEW in the ratings for one week, as the ratings for this week’s NXT & AEW shows are in and boy is it getting exciting.
Both shows saw an increase in ratings, and the gap between the two closed dramatically, with AEW scoring an average of 822,000 viewers, with NXT just 9,000 viewers behind on 813,000. AEW continue to dominate in the 18-49 demographic, but this war is just getting started. Even with NXT getting the exposure from the main roster and their invasions this week, it wasn’t quite enough to make them beat AEW this week. I wonder what other tricks they’ll pull out the bag.
What might be slightly disconcerting for AEW fans however, is that not only did NXT close the gap this week, and continue to receive exposure on the main roster, but there’s been some revealing photos circling the web from this week’s episode of AEW Dynamite.
While the crowd in Charlotte were electric for pretty much the entire show, it appears that AEW have been taking some lessons from SmackDown in order to make an arena look full, as most of the hard cam side was taped off. The reported attendance for the show was somewhere around 5,000, which isn’t terrible by any means, but it might behoove AEW to go for some smaller venues and use the big arenas for PPVs such as the upcoming Full Gear this Saturday.
Then again after Full Gear, perhaps everything turns around and they’ll start filling out every arena again. Who knows?
What won’t change though, is the fantastic content AEW have been providing, including two absolute home-run segments on this week’s show, one from Cody and one from Chris Jericho. A marvelous little detail has now been revealed, as according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, both Cody and Jericho respectively were responsible for writing their own promo segments.
I don’t want to say that they’re better than anything WWE has written in like, ever, but…well in the words of Dave Meltzer…
“There are 40 writers working in WWE today and they haven’t written a promo this good, perhaps ever.”
Yep that’ll do it. It really was something special, as was Jericho’s hilarious spoof video. I would highly recommend checking both out if you haven’t already. It’s almost as if people understand their own characters and know what to say more than a team of writers do. Shocking.
Continuing down the AEW train, and the opening match of the night between Trent and PAC was marred with controversy as there was a botched finish. PAC hit The Black Arrow on Trent, but even though Trent didn’t kick out, the referee only counted 2, which prompted PAC to lock in The Brutalizer for the win. Now, the reason for this botched finish has been revealed.
Once again in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, a major lack of communication is being reported as the reason for the awkward finish. A commercial break was fast approaching, and while the match was originally supposed to go longer, they sped up the finish of the match, and everyone was on board with it, except the referee, who was still under the impression they were doing the original finish of the match.
The quick recovery from PAC and locking in The Brutalizer certainly helped to quell some of the boos from the crowd, and luckily it didn’t harm too much in the way of build.
But now let’s get into our last story, and we switch back over to SmackDown for this one, and we’ve got a little preview of potentially a big angle planned for the show.
Tyson Fury has been confirmed for tonight’s show, and according to WWE’s press release, Braun Strowman won’t be far behind because the pair have unfinished business. Please no, can’t we just leave that in Saudi Arabia? Please?
But he won’t be the only undefeated boxer to be present at SmackDown, as Leeds based boxer Josh Warrington will also be at the show. Warrington had this to say in an interview with SunSport:
“I’m very much looking forward to being at the wrestling this Friday in Manchester. I remember growing up watching WWE and I’ll be coming along with my nephew, who is two generations down the line and a huge fan now.”
The wrestling…don’t you know that’s a bad word Warrington? He also threatened that if anyone got in his business he’d deliver a DDT to them, despite only being 5’7”. Hey we’re like basically the same height. Imagine him standing next to Tyson Fury. What an amazing visual that would be.
“It’s great to see so many boxers being involved both past and present. Over the years we’ve had Floyd Mayweather and of course we’ve just seen Tyson Fury – who did really well”
…did he though?
“So I’m really looking forward to being a part of it but I’m going to let everyone know now – if anyone starts on me then they’ll be getting a DDT from the Leeds Warrior. I might only 5ft 7in, but a kick to the stomach and a DDT and they’ll be out for the count. Let’s have it!”
Let’s have it indeed.
Hey there, member of the SWAFT Nation, do you want free wrestling stuff? Of course you do. Then why don’t you sign up to WrestleCrate.co.uk with the promo code WRESTLETALK to give you three free extra items inside your first box when you take out a subscription!
November’s Wrestle Crate will contain an exclusive, brand-new British Bulldog t-shirt, an AJ Styles mystery item, plus a new wrestling figure only available from Wrestle Crate. WrestleCrate is a monthly mystery box full of loads of wrestling goodies, which has items from the biggest promotions in wrestling.
Has a major WWE heel turn been leaked? Press the video to the right to find out more, and the video below that to learn about Randy Orton’s WWE future as it’s now been confirmed! A special thank you to our pledgehammers on Patreon, some of whom you can see scrolling below me right now! I’ve been Chopper Pete Quinnell, and that, was wrestling.