We publish a whole lot of content here at Cageside Seats. We’re also [looks around and whispers so the bosses can’t hear] not the only place producing wrestling content on the internet. So, as a service to you on the weekdays, we’ll be producing a wrestling newsletter, "Rude Awakening." Well, it will be a newsletter eventually: for now, it’ll just be part of your experience here at Cageside, collecting the news, recaps, and social moments from the greater wrestling universe daily so you won’t fall behind, with a newsletter format to come.
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The buildup to who is facing Brock Lesnar at Great Balls of Fire is good and all, but the assumption seems to be that Brock is just going to Brock all over whoever it is anyway: it’s basically just a placeholder until Braun Strowman can take on Lesnar as was planned before the big(ger) man’s injury. It doesn’t have to be that way, though! While it’s likely that (spoilers, probably) the rumor about this is true — that the winner of the Fatal 5Way at Extreme Rules is in for a short feud against Lesnar — it doesn’t have to be a losing one.
Let’s say Finn Balor wins the Fatal 5Way this Sunday. He gets his feud against Brock Lesnar, which will heavily be focused on how a 5-foot-11, 190-pound dude isn’t going to even register on Lesnar’s radar in a match, never mind actually defeat him. WWE should lean into that feeling, though, and have Finn shock Lesnar with his speed and agility and a whole lot of hard kicks to keep things relatively even.
Hey, Randy Orton and the RKO got close enough to hurting Lesnar at SummerSlam 2016 that Brock split his head open to put a stop to it, and Goldberg just downed Lesnar multiple times, so it’s not like Lesnar is completely invulnerable to top faces. Let Finn in on this.
The key is that the match doesn’t need an actual finish. Let Finn and Lesnar fight long enough for everyone to believe that wow, Finn actually does seem to have a chance against this monster. Then, assuming he’s able to return at this point, have Strowman interfere to attack Lesnar, who he has already publicly singled out as his post-Roman Reigns target. And since Strowman defeated Reigns last they met and some time has passed, they can move on from that feud, anyway.
Finn doesn’t get pinned, Lesnar doesn’t lose to Balor before his huge matchup with Braun, and we get to save the conclusion of Balor vs. Brock, Demon vs. Beast, for another day. That’s a great use of all three that give you plenty to work with down the line, which is what you want out of an inconclusive finish.
- Tommaso Ciampa explained his actions at NXT TakeOver: Chicago, and also confirmed the knee injury that will keep him out of action for some time.
- It’s apparently out fault for what Ciampa did to Johnny Gargano, but hey, if we’re going to keep getting episodes of NXT that are this good, some sacrifices have to be made.
- NXT has yet another new opening, which is good, since the last one was pretty garbage.
- Lucha Underground is back after a long hiatus, and they went right for an All Night Long championship match to kick things off.
- Here’s your weekly preview and five questions for the upcoming episode of Impact Wrestling. Maybe they’ll let Scott Steiner speak this week!
- Rocky Romero explained to Danielle Matheson how merchandise can build a greater connection with wrestling fans.
- Also at With Spandex in the realm of conversations with wrestlers is Brandon Stroud on Chris Jericho, who discusses Fozzy, wrestling until he’s 90, and why he won’t put you on the list.
- Lana wants in on the women’s Money in the Bank ladder match. One wonders if she’ll end up being Naomi’s Money in the Bank opponent instead.
- While we’re on the subject of SmackDown’s women, RAW’s Nia Jax has noticed how much better the blue brand is utilizing that division.
- Fans and AJ Lee will not let Big E forget about the time he accidentally destroyed her sternum with his forearm.
- So, hey. What’s WWE doing with Luke Harper right now?
- The trailer for season two of Total Bellas is here. And we might even be getting more WWE reality television, as cameras are apparently following around Naomi and the Usos.
- It sounds like Io Shirai will not be part of the Mae Young Classic, as she still has dates left to finish up before then.