Welcome back to another Monday Morning Q&A where I toss out some questions to get a feel of how you guys and gals are feeling about certain topics.
So here are 5 questions I’d like to toss out for this week. I’ll give my answers, too, but the key here is that I want to know what YOU think! So make sure you chime in!
1) Would you like to see WarGames continue for Survivor Series in the future, the return of the traditional elimination match, or something else?
After all these years of talking about how Hell in a Cell shouldn’t be a pay-per-view that just happens at a particular time of the year, with feuds having to rush a build to that gimmick just because “it’s June” or whatever, why are we going to do that with WarGames? That’s baffling to me.
WarGames should be in the back pocket for WWE to pull out any time there’s a justifiable match, but not just because the calendar dictates the stipulation. Only do it when there is a feud worthy of the two rings and the steel cage and having a proper 4-on-4 or 5-on-5.
Survivor Series should go back to the elimination matches, but there should be tweaks that make them actually mean something. WarGames is fun, but it shouldn’t happen every November like clockwork. I don’t need to see more “Damage CTRL plus two other people against five babyfaces who are working together just because.” Give me more of how AEW did things with Blackpool Combat Club vs. Jericho Appreciation Society and whatnot.
2) Do you think Austin Theory’s United States title win makes up for his Money in the Bank failure?
Nope. It is better than nothing, but that’s like saying you’re starving and the filet mignon you ordered was replaced by a McDonald’s hamburger. Yeah, it’s cow—there are equivalencies—but it’s not the same quality by any means.
He should have at least won the cash-in. That would have been much better to stomach. But not only did he not do that, he didn’t even really “win” this match in many ways. He fell into a lucky pin when someone else did the damage. That makes him look like he lucked his way ass-backwards into the belt, rather than that he won it on his own merit.
WWE seems to be actively trying to stunt his growth in the interest of saying that the struggle is character development. I disagree with that philosophy. All I think they’re doing is winding the clock back a full year to the last time he had this title, but this time, he comes with all this extra baggage and less momentum.
3) Who would you book as the next challengers for Roman Reigns, Ronda Rousey and Bianca Belair?
WWE hasn’t done a good job setting up anyone to be the next opponents for ANY of these titles. Everyone within the vicinity of a title shot has been beaten. That means they’ll all look like secondary filler challengers that can’t possibly win the titles.
But that’s the corner they’ve booked themselves in. There isn’t any way out of it other than trudging through at least 2 months of trying to build up other people and hoping they do a good enough job to offset those built-in predictable wins.
With that being said, Sheamus should get the next shot at Roman. It should happen on SmackDown at some point toward the end of December. Save Kevin Owens for Royal Rumble and pull the trigger on Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens against The Usos at WrestleMania.
Rhea Ripley should get the next shot at Belair. I don’t want to see another Damage CTRL match with Belair for a long, long time.
Rousey has significantly less options. Raquel Rodriguez is the only one who makes any sense to me, but that’s not a match I think anyone will buzz about, since we’ve already seen it. Realistically, you’d get more mileage out of Doudrop going over to SmackDown to challenge Rousey, if not just for the surprise element. But we all know Rousey’s not dropping that belt, so every match from now until April is going to have fans checked out and not invested. You’re doomed.
4) What are your thoughts on Dijak’s return and SCRYPTS turning out to be Reggie in a mask?
Poor Dijak had his return ruined by Booker T asking “Who?!” like he’s a nobody, and Wes Lee not being in the right position (whoever’s fault that was) for Dijak’s finisher. Not getting that knee up in time made that spot look awful. But they can bounce back. It’s great he’s Dijak and not T-Bar, and I think he should be the next NXT champion.
Scrypts, on the other hand, was a damn mess. There was nothing at all in the weeks leading up to this that made me feel like it would make sense for Reggie in a luchador mask to be where this was going. The mask looks awful, too, and there isn’t any character involved whatsoever. So why is he wearing this stupid outfit? Is he supposed to be a heel or babyface? Shouldn’t he be just teaming with Axiom if they’re these random superhero repackage guys? Plus, the crowd was chanting “Reggie”, so that just made it even worse. This isn’t going to work out. He’ll be enhancement talent or released in no time, I feel. Sorry, Reggie. This gimmick is awful.
5) What do you think about The Elite poking fun at CM Punk in their match against Death Triangle?
A lot of people are jumping to either conclusion of “this must mean they’ve worked something out with Punk returning and they’re building toward something” or “they must clearly never plan on having Punk ever come back and they’re burning this bridge with intense heat.”
I’m more of the opinion of those 3 guys being SO into the meta self-referential side of this business, like they’ve been for years, that they just can’t help themselves but to call attention to these things. There’s probably a good bit of ego in there, too, where they just want to flex their muscles and be a little petty about it.
I can’t say I wouldn’t at least be tempted to do something similar if I were in their shoes. What I can say, though, is that while it can make someone like me laugh, it might not be the best look for AEW as a whole to do things like that, as it does come off adversarial during a time when they say they should be moving on.
Let us know your thoughts about these questions by answering them in the comments!