MR. TITO: Calling Out Tribal Wrestling Marks and Analysts About the Recent WWE/NXT PLEs

WWE held a pair of Paid Live Events (PLE) with WWE Money in the Bank 2024 and NXT Heatwave 2024. While both events had a lot of energy and excitement, they also had several blown spots and scary moments when something went wrong. In other words, Botchamania will be eating GOOD after these events. In case you missed it, the following things occurred this weekend:

– Damien Priest forgot to kick out at 2 during his match with Seth Rollins

– Zoey Stark flipped over the ropes and landed on her head, missing the wrestler (and ladder) that she was supposed to land on

– Tonga Loa missed a crotch shot, and then on the 2nd attempt, he hits KO’s bag and his brother in the face at the same time.

– Roxanne Perez Pop Rox failure on second attempt, though she immediately grabbed her opponent to successfully hit it again after that (smart move on her part)

– Sami Zayn flipping off the barrier, luckily caught by Bron Breakker

– Zoey Stark and Iyo Sky crashing down on the ladder

Among a few others…

Look, being a professional wrestler is a DIFFICULT job in the first place and not every move can be executed perfectly. However, these guys are professionals and that sets them apart from any average joe or backyard wrestler who tries to do what they do. THAT SAID, when you increase the risk on the moves attempted or add things like ladders into the fold, the probability of a “botch” or an injury goes up significantly. FURTHERMORE, if you wrestle a choreographed match and you attempt to script you’re entire match, things can go wrong if a wrestler forgets or gets hit in the head. If nothing else, a choreographed match looks very obvious.

But I don’t want to talk about the botches, as I would hope WWE officials with TKO corporate officials talk about the risks of what happened this past weekend. No, what I want to talk about is the utter hypocrisy of the wrestling fans who are tribal towards their favorite promotions.

Anytime a botched move occurred during WWE or NXT’s shows, AEW fans would clip it and say “WWE fans would ridicule us if this happened on AEW”… And then tribal WWE fans would attack them for posting what that hypocrisy. More division between the fanbases, as both are ignorant to the FACT that competition in wrestling causes wrestling to GROW. Absent of competition, wrestling begins to suck. See WWE’s dominance of the 2010s…

The best form of hypocrisy, however, came with Bryan Alvarez and Dave Meltzer reviewing the NXT Heatwave show and calling the Kelani Jordan vs. Sol Ruca “a very heavily choreographed gymnastics display that was disguised as a wrestling match” or “an exhibition of wrestling moves”. Just PRICELESS to hear the Observer boys being completely out-of-touch when reviewing this and NEVER acknowledging the extreme amount of choreographing that many AEW wrestlers, including the Young Bucks, perform on a weekly basis. Just utterly amazing to hear the absurd AEW bias come out of their lips. That’s why the Observer isn’t relevant and other news insiders have bypassed them years ago.

BUT here is something that both WWE and AEW tribes are guilty of… They like this HIGH RISK crap. Even though we’ve seen Ladder Matches or Table Spots a thousand times, that’s what the current wrestling fanbase wants and thus both AEW/WWE delivers.

YET, what has made WWE grow lately? Oh yeah, NON-WRESTLING segments. Guys in the ring and talking is what has drawn for the WWE. See all of those sellouts of WWE events? Yeah, that’s based on HYPE from non-wrestling segments on RAW or Smackdown with guys just talking with microphones.

The majority of the Bloodline stuff is from in-ring segments with guys talking to each other or backstage segments. The matches are totally secondary… As good as the Wrestlemania 40 stuff was, wrestling fans were 100% into that event based on what transpired BEFORE those matches between Roman, Rock, Seth, Cody, and Paul. Then, Rock/Roman vs. Seth/Cody and Cody vs. Roman just had to be reasonably performed to pay off. Both matches were great, which is only icing on an already great tasting cake.

Could you tell me what got over during the NWO era? Guys wearing NWO t-shirts and cutting promos, the matches were secondary. In fact, the Pay Per View matches were normally horrible but we kept coming back for more because the non-wrestling stuff was so fun on WCW Nitro. How about Austin vs. McMahon? Steve Austin had a BROKEN NECK, so thus was careful with his in-ring work and worked many RAW shows by just talking on a microphone. The Rock got over based on his microphone ability and smack talking rather than his matches. John Cena, who just announced his pending retirement, got over when he began cutting promos with his wrestling gimmick. Brock Lesnar had Paul Heyman to hype all of his matches, and ditto for Roman Reigns during the 2020s. Roman is getting more over himself lately because he can cut better promos and can thus wrestle FEWER matches because he draws more by freakin’ talking.

These guys jumping off ladders and falling through tables have ZERO common sense when it comes to being a wrestler. Period. You’re KILLING yourself for a brief 10 second pop that people will forget about the next day.

As CM Punk once put it, “you see this (holding a microphone), this is power”.

When the building is packed, you’ve got the fans hooked… Regardless of how the Cody/KO/Orton vs. Bloodline match went, the fact is that Solo as the “head of the table” and the Samoan Werewolf now out there is what hyped that match. Fans what to know what happens next and not from a match, but storyline wise… How is Roman Reigns going to react? Is the Rock behind everything that Solo is doing? When and how will Paul Heyman come back?

This is what BOTH of you AEW and WWE tribes don’t get… LESS IS MORE when it comes to professional wrestling. Do the heavy lifting with cutting promos and shooting angles, and then take it easy inside the ring. Fans are emotionally charged from the promos and angles anyway, so when the heel has the babyface in a headlock and acts like he’s tightening the lock, the emotionally charged fans react! But nobody is getting hurt from the headlock… Do something like the abdominal stretch, which hurts nobody, and then the heel reaches for the rope… Seriously, using the ropes as leverage hurts anyone? Doesn’t matter, because the fans are mad at the heel in general.

Doing move after move after move so quickly and then doing table spots in EVER SINGLE MATCH just wears out fans.

I’m with the WWE 100% on just having 5-6 matches for Pay Per Views that are done within 3 hours. That beats cramming in 15 high action matches within 4-5 hours that often tell no story, as everyone is just rushing to get as many moves hit during the time allotted. It’s just for this week, WWE and NXT went high risk for their shows and they’ve got to cut back on that. WWE and NXT have been killing it on promos and storylines, so why risk getting your performers injured on unnecessary high risk spots?

Hey AEW, how is Adam Copeland doing? Oh yeah, he BROKE HIS LEG jumping off the top of a cage. How necessary was that for him to do? He’s probably making $1-3 million per year over the next 3-5 years, but you can’t use him for the next 6 months or so. Then, when he comes back, he’s not exactly going to be fully healthy. The older you get, the more brittle those bones become.

Here’s the dirty secret about Edge… His mic skills got him more over than the daredevil stunts. Remember the flash photography stuff with Christian? Remember the Rated-R Superstar antics? Dude was drawing by cutting promos in the ring and didn’t need to brutalize his body with high risk spots.

But you AEW and WWE tribes can continue to be enablers to letting both promotions risk injuries of their top stars. Also, continue to be hypocrites because if you’re a wrestling publication that is looking to GROW and NOT DECLINE your subscription base, alienating more than half of the wrestling fanbase due to BAD wrestling analysis is the way to go.

Yeah, I’m talking to the clouds again and I’m telling them to bring thunder upon all of you online fans.

I cannot wait until the next Botchamania!

LAST COLUMN – IN CASE YOU MISSED IT from 7/5/24: Be Careful When Consuming WWE Superstar Logan Paul’s PRIME Energy Drinks

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