THE WRESTLING REPORT

Money in the Bank is coming!

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Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio, Sports and Wrestling. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio shows www.nerdthugradio.com!

The setup for Money in the Bank was in full swing this week as Raw and Smackdown started rolling.

Raw started off strong with the announcement of four contenders for the upcoming Money in the Bank ladder match being announced by Alexa Bliss and then having their own tag match. The highlight of that match for me was watching Baron's partner Drew Mcintyre turning on him mid match. The Usos had a tag match against Gallows and Anderson who honestly I'm not sure anyone asked for a return from. The biggest shock of Raw was the discovery that Bobby Lashley now speaks in third person, that was a tough discovery. Raw then also announced the women's contestants for Money in the bank from Raw which was nice to hear Alexa Bliss be named for it, I hope she gets back to regular competition because the women's division is better for it. Becky Lynch continues to burn across both brands as Becky "2 Belts" aka The Man, it's a beautiful thing she's doing honestly. Quick question, are Zack Ryder and Curt Hawkins really the Raw tag team champions? That's weird. So apparently at Money in the Bank we're having another Shane McMahon vs Miz match and we're also going to have a Seth Rollins vs AJ Styles, at least I'm excited about one of those.

Smackdown kicked off with Kofi Kingston laying down some decent promo work in anticipation of his title match at Money in the Bank and Kevin Owens knocked another one out of the park which is a great beginning. The Hardy's having to give up the tag titles was a bit of a disappointment, but this is an issue that I've been talking about on Smackdown for awhile, these older superstars are more likely to break down and that's why Smackdown needs to get some more youth into its roster. Also, Lars Sullivan is the most boring "scary" guy ever, this is just Braun Stroman but less intimidating. As Smackdown announces their list of men entering the 8 man Money in the Bank ladder match, it's actually looking like an interesting match and secretly my hope is for either Randy Orton to win so he can finally have some kind of direction. For the last two years he's basically been showing up when he wants and then just disappearing for a few weeks and then coming back randomly, it's been kind of annoying. Another announcement for Money in the bank is the entry of Mandy Rose, splitting Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville after splitting the Riott Squad but on the heels of creating a women's tag team is a little bit confusing as there aren't a lot of solid women's tag teams.

Overall this was another good week as momentum begins building towards the next big event.

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Should Watson be in the MVP conversation? Composite image by Jack Brame.

The 2020 NFL season has a lot going on. Even if we take the coronavirus out of it, there's still a lot to digest. There are so many great performances being put up, one can make an argument for several players to win league MVP. The quarterback position typically gets more credit than others. If I restrict the argument to quarterbacks only, we're looking at Russell Wilson, Patrick Mahomes, and Aaron Rodgers. Dalvin Cook, Alvin Kamara, and Derrick Henry are the leading contenders at running back. On defense, there really isn't a standout defender. The defense gets no love, but there are several guys in the running for NFL Defensive Player of the Year.

Deshaun Watson has been putting up numbers that have matched or rivaled some of the top MVP candidates over his last seven games. That stretch has coincided with the firing of head coach/general manager Bill O'Brien. Coincidence? I think not. Taking the reigns off a wild horse can often lead to said horse running free and flourishing! So question: Should Watson be getting league MVP considerations? I think so.

For starters, he's been one of the best players in the league over the course of the last seven games. 18 passing touchdowns and only two interceptions. The only quarterback with a better touchdown to interception ratio over that same span is Mahomes (19 and 2, as opposed to Watson's 18 & 2). Factoring in total season stats, of course Mahomes is doing much better. He's on a better team with a much better coach and general manager. The same could be said for Wilson and Rodgers. Put Watson on any of those teams and their records wouldn't be any worse than what they are now.

The Texans are 4-3 since firing O'Brien. While that isn't a great record, consider the fact they started the season 0-4 and looked like a total disaster. Watson looked like he was caged and couldn't wait to be freed. The team's record could be even better if the defense had a pulse. The proper supporting cast has a lot to do with a player's MVP candidate's chances. Now that one of his favorite weapons, Will Fuller, and the team's best corner, Bradley Roby, are both suspended for the rest of the season by the league for violating the substance abuse/PED policy, things will get much tougher for Watson.

If he continues to put up these cartoon like numbers, I don't see why he wouldn't be in the MVP conversation. He's currently fopurth in passing yards, sixth in completion percentage, tied for fifth in passing touchdowns, eighth in QBR, and third in quarterback rating. Watson is emerging as the star he was projected to be coming into the 2017 draft. I'm not saying Watson deserves to be the league MVP, but he deserves to be in the conversation. His MVP candidacy should be treated like the family gathering hierarchy: once you reach a certain age and/or status, you're no longer resigned to the kiddie table. Now you get to sit with all the adults, engage in their conversations, and gain access to things you couldn't previously. Watson won't win the MVP award, but I strongly believe he could finish top five. Especially if he keeps making lemonade with the lemons he's been given.

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