29th Jul2018

WWE Week in Review (7/23/18 – 7/29/18)

by Nathan Favel

wwe-week-header

Welcome to this edition of the WWE Week In Review, right here on Nerdly. I’m Nathan Favel and we have a close race for the match of the week, so let’s get right to it.

WWE Promotes Independent Cards On Web-Site

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

EVOLVE Wrestling and London-based PROGRESS Wrestling launch their first joint tour this August, featuring a mix of exciting American independent talent and hard-hitting grapplers from the United Kingdom, including Superstars of the NXT UK division. Among the PROGRESS contingent from across the pond will be WWE United Kingdom Champion Pete Dunne, former NXT Tag Team Champions Moustache Mountain (Tyler Bate & Trent Seven), Mark Andrews, 2018 WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament winner Zack Gibson and 2018 Mae Young Classic competitor (and 2017 semifinalist) Toni Storm.

Joining them will be the top competitors from EVOLVE, including WWN Champion Joey Janela, EVOLVE Tag Team Champions Chris Dickinson & Jaka, Austin Theory, AR Fox and many more. The tour will feature four shows from each promotion, including PROGRESS’ first stops in Philadelphia and the Midwest. Each day will feature action from EVOLVE at 4 p.m., while the PROGRESS shows, featuring NXT UK Superstars, will follow at 8 p.m. Tickets for each event are sold separately and can be found here. Check out the dates below.

  • Aug. 4 in Philadelphia at the 2300 Arena
  • Aug. 5 in Melrose, Mass., at Melrose Memorial Hall
  • Aug. 11 in Chicago at Cicero Stadium
  • Aug. 12 in Livonia, Mich., at Monaghan Knights of Columbus Hall

My Take: Any-time Vince allows other wrestling leagues to be promoted on his dollar, that’s big news. There have been rumors for a few years that Vince may sign certain wrestling leagues to air cards on his WWE Network, and with press releases like this one, that possibility is looking more and more likely. I’m always nervous about Vince having more of an influence on other leagues, but I can’t argue with a good pay-day, which is what these promotions will receive during the negotiation… hopefully.

NXT Interviewer Gives Interview

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

Armed with a microphone and an incredible zest for life, Sarah Schreiber is gaining some notoriety among NXT viewers as the newest addition to the brand’s broadcast team. It seems only fitting that Schreiber, whose life has been synonymous with entertainment projects, would make her foray into the world of sports-entertainment. This week, WWE.com talks with Schreiber to discuss her past, her present and the excitement surrounding her WWE future. Read the interview in full here.

My Take: It’s always nice to have a chance to learn a bit more about these people. It remains to be seen how far she will go in the WWE, but you can never run out of new talking heads for television, as long as they can get talent over. I can’t stand when the interviewer’s most interesting contribution is “Can you give me your thoughts about this?” Gene Okerlund didn’t become famous for asking Hulk Hogan to give me your thoughts about this and that, did he?

New Members Of The Mae Young Classic Announced

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

As the WWE Universe looks ahead to the second installment of the annual Mae Young Classic, four more names have been revealed for the 32-woman tournament, which takes place later this summer on WWE Network. The latest confirmed competitors are masked luchadora Zeuxis, NXT UK’s Isla Dawn, new NXT signee and former NCAA basketball champion Lacey Lane, and one of the hottest prospects from the American independent wrestling scene, Karen Q.

A proponent of “Lucha Strong Style,” Zeuxis enters this year’s field with a decade of ring experience and more than 800 matches under her belt. Calling herself “Puerto Rican Power,” Zeuxis boasts a combination of strength and speed, and has frequently ended matches with a top-rope Spanish Fly. She is a multi-time champion in Mexico and Japan, and last September she collected perhaps her most important accolade yet, defeating Princesa Sugehit (a competitor from last year’s Mae Young Classic) in a Mask vs. Mask Match. Will she soon add the Mae Young Classic trophy to her long list of accomplishments?

Scotland’s Isla Dawn turned heads with her recent outing at the WWE U.K. Championship Tournament special on WWE Network. This self-described “modern-day witch” employs a hard-hitting style that draws from her background in kickboxing and dance that has carried her throughout promotions across Europe. Molded by influences as varying as Goldust (her first WWE action figure) and Killian Dain (who saw her act in a play and encouraged her to begin wrestling training), Dawn hopes to put a spell on her competition in this year’s Classic.

Lacey Lane stands to be one of the most well-rounded athletes in the entire Mae Young Classic. The newly signed WWE Performance Center recruit was a member the 2012 NCAA Division II championship basketball team at Shaw University, where she graduated magna cum laude. Deciding to give wrestling a try, Lane studied the mat game under WWE Hall of Famers The Dudley Boyz. Before joining the WWE PC, Lane made waves on the independent scene in both the U.S. and Mexico

If you want a competitor who’s tough, cunning, energetic, acrobatic and just flat-out entertaining, look no further than Karen Q. The cerebral Chinese American, who graduated with a master’s degree shortly after making her ring debut, blitzes the competition with a dizzying combination of technical wizardry and breathtaking aerial assaults. All the while, she also softens opponents up for the Spring Roll – her take on the Boston Crab – to rearrange spines and claim victories.

My Take: This is another set of great talents, as well as a promising amateur who will give this second MYC a different flavor. With the announcement that we have a women’s PPV in October, the value of this tournament has increased exponentially.

Best Moment Of The Week:

The announcement of the first PPV exclusive to women is a huge occasion for wrestling. Having, at least, one card a year dedicated to the women will give them a real goal to look forward to, rather than having to squeeze themselves onto Wrestlemania and hope for the best.

Worst Moment Of The Week:

When Roman Reigns became the number one contender to the Universal Title again, a collective shrug of in-difference occurred that didn’t seem to promising for the gate or the PPV buys, as well as the WWE Network subscription count.

Worst Match Of The Week:

Raw Tag Team Champions The B-Team def. “Woken” Matt Hardy & Bray Wyatt - The fact that the B-Team keeps getting fluke victories will not make them look competent. All champions should always look capable of defending and retaining their belts at all times. Does Vince McMahon ever wonder why people think he’s an idiot?

Best Matches Of The Week:

5. Becky Lynch versus Carmella – Smackdown Live

4. The New Day versus SAnitY – Smackdown Live

3. Roman Reigns versus Bobby Lashley – Monday Night RAW

2. Drew Gulak versus Mustafa Ali versus TJP versus Hideo Itami – 205 Live

1. Tommaso Ciampa versus Aleister Black: NXT World Championship Match – NXT

This was a great match that may be one of the best WWE matches of the year. Ciampa has been the most interesting personality in NXT for months and could be poised to become its most infamous champion.
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Thank you for reading and I’ll see you next week.

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