Welcome to another edition of eWN Round Table, where we gather some of the most active writers here on eWrestlingNews and share the platform to answer some questions surrounding a centralized topic, upcoming event, etc.
This is meant to showcase the potential for both a wide range of perspectives as well as how sometimes, there can be a group consensus no matter what your viewpoint is, so we also invite all of you to join in on the discussion by answering these questions yourself in the comments section below.
For this particular volume, we’ll be focusing on this Sunday’s WWE Extreme Rules 2019 event.
Participants for this round = Anthony Mango, Ethan Absler, Richard Staple, Kyle Dunning.
1) “With the recent changes going on in WWE, are you more, less, or equally interested in Extreme Rules compared to the past few pay-per-views? Has it done anything to boost your anticipation?”
MANGO: The July 1 episode of Raw was the first overall good one that I remember sitting through in a long while. Now, Paul Heyman might have his hands on a product called Extreme? I was never a big ECW fan, but I’m all for trying out something different, and there’s a chance this event truly does have a new feel to it than something we’ve been normally getting. I’m definitely more excited about this show more now than I was three weeks ago.
ABSLER: I am equally as excited for Extreme Rules as any other PPV. Although the changes of having Heyman and Bischoff in creative positions is a positive step, the two still must report directly to Vince McMahon and I am reluctant to become too excited until I see some positive changes on screen too.
STAPLE: No, my anticipation for Extreme Rules has not changed. I’m really not interested in the PPV at all. It’s funny because I will actually be doing volunteer work next week and won’t be able to watch it live, so maybe it’s divine intervention telling me to stay away from the show. Super Showdown was a massive flop and Stomping Grounds was meh. I expect ER to be no different.
DUNNING: Extreme Rules always disappoints me, because it will never get close to ECW or the One Night Stand PPVs. So I always go in to Extreme Rules with poor anticipation, and it very rarely impresses. Hopefully this year’s does.
2) “Do you think Extreme Rules should go back to its previous setup of every match having a stipulation, or is that unnecessary or even better the way it currently is?”
MANGO: As much as it was fun to have some wacky gimmicks, WWE has too many events to be able to do something like that anymore. I’d rather them spread out the gimmicks and only do them when necessary. That’s why I don’t like Hell in a Cell and TLC being pay-per-views, as more often than not, matches are booked in those stipulations just because it’s that time of the year, rather than that the feud was going in that trajectory. I’m fine with Extreme Rules the way it is, provided they stop thinking “No Holds Barred” and “Extreme Rules” and whatnot are different matches, because they aren’t.
ABSLER: I don’t think every match on the card needs a stipulation because that waters down the main stipulation matches, however, I think there need to be more on the card.
STAPLE: I don’t necessarily think every match at the Extreme Rules PPV needs to have a stipulation. One of the best matches in the history of Extreme Rules was a regular fatal four way between The Miz, Cesaro, Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn. TLC tends to suffer from having separate tables matches, ladder matches, chair matches and a separate TLC match. It can be over saturated after a while.
DUNNING: Unless they can bleed and get ultra violent, no amount of stipulations will help this fake advertising. Can’t blame the talent, they are only doing what they are told. Seeing singles matches at Extreme Rules always makes me scratch my head, but it’s been happening for years and no one seems bothered by it.
3) “What gimmick matches do you miss that haven’t been seen in a while?”
MANGO: I would say Falls Count Anywhere, but we’ve had that, so I’ll go with the Championship Scramble. Yeah, it was a mess, but it was still fun, and I think if they tweaked it just a tad, they could have something there. With the 24/7 Championship doing a randomized pinfall situation, maybe that could be a way to factor it in. If not that, I think it’s been far too long since we’ve had a Three Stages of Hell match and would like to see Adam Cole and Johnny Gargano do that.
ABSLER: I think an “I Quit” match or a “Falls count anywhere” match would be really refreshing to see in WWE today and there is no shortage of superstars who would present these matches well.
STAPLE: Hmmmmm, this is actually a tough one. I’m not sure the last time we’ve seen a submission match. I’d like to see that again.
DUNNING: I Quit matches that push the envelope. To the point it makes you question if the two guys will ever be the same again. Needs to be a severely heated feud though, and not just for the sake of torturing two guys.
4) “On a scale from 1-10, how pissed will you be if Seth Rollins and Becky Lynch actually dropped their titles to Baron Corbin and Lacey Evans like this?”
MANGO: 8. I think it’s a weak way to have the titles change hands, and I’d be frustrated that WWE would probably just have them win the titles back and do it purely for the swerve. However, the troll part of me would love to see the reaction, especially since I think Baron Corbin gets a bad rap and is entertaining, even if I don’t want him to be the universal champion right now. This isn’t the way to do it, nor the challengers who should be the next in line for the belt, though, and it would be a mistake, so I’d definitely be pissed, but it wouldn’t be the end of the world. Let’s just say that I’d rather that happen than Brock Lesnar becoming champion pretty much ever again, least of all any time in the next few months and holding the belt until WrestleMania 36 or longer, that’s for sure.
ABSLER: I would be really pissed. If I had to give it a number, I’d say probably 8 or 9 simply because the most prestigious Men’s and Women’s titles on a brand shouldn’t change hands if the loser isn’t even pinned (Becky loses the Women’s title because Seth gets pinned). In addition, I would also be really angry because Corbin and Evans have had so many chances to win their respective titles. What makes this bout any different?