Sunday, 4 July 2010

Booking Ideas for WWE, TNA and ROH for the rest of 2010 By Shaun Nichols

There as certainly been times this year when you get the familiar deja vu feeling that it's the same old thing time after time. There are also occasions where you wonder why the promotion is booking their wrestlers into seemingly total oblivion, an easy pick is TNA but certainly the WWE have been guilty of this as well. With that in mind I thought I would throw out a few ideas and see what people think.
Starting with the WWE, I have no problems with keeping the WWE Title on Sheamus for the rest of the year. I have been pleasantly surprised with how well Sheamus as done since his surprise title win over John Cena at the TLC PPV last December. Sheamus has proven to be consistant on his promos and while his wrestling ability wouldn't have him anywhere near a Shawn Michaels level. The fact is that this isn't neccessarily as important in the WWE as it would be in other promotions. Keeping the title on him for an extended run will also enable the title to regain some of its importance. The constant title switches we have seen in the last several months as led to title switches meaning very little. This was clearly illustrated by John Cena's promo after the Fatal Four PPV saying titles come and go. Way to go if you want your fans not to care when they see a title change either on PPV or TV.
What happens with the Nexus group in the next few weeks depends entirely on what direction the writers decide to go. Watching Raw over the last few weeks as been both interesting and also confusing. The problem that the WWE has, is that eventually the rookies will have to have matches and that's where the wheels could easily come off. As it stands Nexus lives and dies on the ability of leader Wade Barrett who is doing a sterling job so far, apart from him though I don't see a lot more that the group offers. Love Justin Gabriel in complete fear before he hit Vince with the 450, never as a career looked like it could end so quickly. Also on a different note, hopefully Ricky Steamboat will soon be out of hospital in the next few days. The brain aneurysm that he suffered had nothing to do with the angle that he did with Nexus on the 28/6/10 edition of Raw.
Finally on the WWE side, I wold book CM Punk to win the world title from Rey at SummerSlam in a title vs mask match. By all accounts the WWE will go in this direction as far as booking the match but they could easily decide to put Rey over.I would go for Punk as champion as he is one of the few performers on Smackdown that as not lost his heat with the fans, to really make the point that Punk feels he's better than Rey, I would have him voluntarily giving up his mask as soon as he wins the title. Rey's second title run is clearly a thank you for staying around and putting his time off on hold. I feel that Vince still doesn't think Rey is strong enough as a draw to have anything other than a short run as champion. By dropping the title in the summer hopefully he would then be able to take a well deserved break and get the surgery that he has required for a long time.
Onto TNA, and to me two things stand out that must happen for TNA to have any chance in moving forward. They are going ahead with Hogan vs. Abyss programme and while its a feud that does nothing for me as a fan. The push of Abyss still as not worked at least it doesn't come across on TV that the fans care for him. The sudden switch from Hogan loving babyface to a rambling heel makes no sense and thus because it defies logic people don't care about it. To make them care and because its likely that only Abyss will still be with TNA as surely Hogan will walk away by the time 2011 comes around. You have to book Abyss as clear and decisive winner against Hogan, Hogan must realise for the sake of TNA that if does want to put the company first that this is the only possible outcome. Whether Hogan would lose on PPV and make Abyss a credible main eventer is a different question all together.
As far as the TNA title, I would book Samoa Joe to take the title off RVD. It was only a few weeks ago on Impact that they teased a RVD and Joe confrontation during a fourway featuring Sting and Matt Morgan. And for a few seconds the fans actually really got into what they were seeing, also the fans seemed to be backing Joe. Chants of 'Joe is gonna kill you' were heard. This is surprising considering that firstly RVD is pushed as the main babyface and secondly how dreadful Samoa Joe as been booked in the last 18 months. The fans clearly want to persist in their faith in Joe, they want to support to him and TNA should not waste this opportunity and continue with the likes of Sting and Jeff Jarrett. Having Samoa Joe dominating the title picture will also negate the travesty of Hogan vs. Abyss dominating TNA TV over the next few months.
Finally onto ROH, unlike both the WWE and TNA everything seems to be going fine with the promotion. The recent Death Before Dishonor internet PPV has had fantastic reviews. Tyler Black is having great matches as champion, the promotion is also reaping the benefits of finally deciding that re-uniting the Kings of Wrestling is the way forward. The turn of Roderick Strong now hooking up with Truth Martini could be hit or miss. The continuing feud between Steen and Generico will entertain for months to come. If Davey Richards is to believed he will quit wrestling in the next few months and that would be a major blow if only in terms of match quality should that be true. What is interesting is that Tyler Black wants to be a clear babyface champion, an ambition not shared by ROH fans who are itching to turn against him but Black's abilty to have great matches is just about stopping them. ROH of all promotions are fans of lengthy title runs such as Danielson, Joe and Nigel. All of which in certain parts ran for too long, they may have regained their steam later on. For example Tyler Black would have benefitted far more by winning the title at either Take No Prisoners or Death Before Dishonor VI both in 2008. Some of the more interesting and entertaining runs were far shorter, I was a big fan of both Austin Aries first run and especially CM Punk's classic 'Summer of Punk' title run in 2005. With that in mind why not put the belt on Christopher Daniels, I have always felt that ROH should have given him the title at Glory By Honor 2 (2003) or have him take the title from Punk (they went with James Gibson, one of the few booking mistakes that Gabe made in ROH). Since his release from TNA (can someone explain that to me?), Daniels has been booked strongly and has been put into the title picture. With Davey apparently on his way out it doesn't make sense to give him the gold. Daniels with the ROH title ticks all the boxes with both old and new ROH fans. He has great matches, he cuts entertaining promos (the one thing that Black fails at), works equally well as a face or heel, he is also probably the most prominant wrestler on the ROH roster to non-ROH wrestling fans. This could be a factor if the use of internet PPV's beome a regular event, early figures indicate that DBD was the most ordered iPPV of the three so far which is a positive. With that in mind I would book the 'Fallen Angel' as ROH Champion by the end of the year at the very latest.

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