WRESTLING REPORT

The road to Wrestlemania is forming post Royal Rumble

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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 and the sister show Ball Control. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio shows at www.nerdthugradio.com or www.facebook.com/nerdthugradio!

Coming off the heels of Sunday's Royal Rumble, some championships changed hands, some surprisingly didn't and the heat is building for WrestleMania.

Surprisingly Finn Balor didn't beat Brock Lesnar, but Seth Rollins did win the Men's Royal Rumble and at the end of RAW decided to challenge Lesnar for his title in the main event of WrestleMania. Ronda Rousey tried to cut a promo about being in the main even of WrestleMania but the fans weren't having it, further cementing the idea that the fans aren't enjoying a Rousey reign as Women's Champion and were chanting Becky's name long before Becky Lynch made a surprise appearance and cashed in the prize of her victory from the women's Royal Rumble and challenged Ronda to a title match at WrestleMania.

Two of the women's tag team entries into the elimination match for the women's tag team titles were set with both Tamina/Nia Jax and Liv Morgan/Sarah Logan qualifying for the match. Overall this was an average wrap up show with no real movement on anything although it looks like the Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins rivalry has come to an end as rumors are now abound that Ambrose won't be renewing his WWE contract and will likely be leaving post WrestleMania for those rumored greener pastures every wrestler's been dreaming about this year, All Elite Wrestling.

Yet again Smackdown launched with Lynch, her feud with Charlotte Flair continuing, but the crowd excited about her impending match with Rousey at WrestleMania also wasn't letting Charlotte talk, so they fought instead. R Truth had a great show as he first beat Shinsuke Nakamora and then Rusev immediately after to both win and defend the US Championship in the span of about twenty minutes.

The Mandy Rose/Naomi story took a slightly more believable turn as Mandy's desire for revenge was at least explained - even if it is paper thin - the tag titles are going to be put on the line against perennial tag team champ threats, The Usos. Smackdown lined up the Elimination Chamber main event with Daniel Bryan, Randy Orton, Samoa Joe, Mustafa Ali, Jeff Hardy and AJ Styles. This is great news if it was 10 years ago, because aside from Mustafa Ali this is one of the oldest main events in recent history, reminiscent of the Triple H vs Sting Wrestlemania match of a few years back.

The road to WrestleMania is shaping up and one thing is obvious, the year of Becky Lynch and the rise of the Women of the WWE may be two of the biggest storylines of 2019.

THE WRESTLING REPORT

WWE makes a move on AEW

WWE PROMO

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. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio shows www.nerdthugradio.com!

So there's a ton that happened this week and not all of it on just Raw and Smackdown. Let's get to the big announcement first, NXT will be leaving the WWE Network and coming to USA Network and directly competing against AEW on Wednesday nights. Also, NXT will begin touring the country like the Red and Blue brands to give more exposure to these lesser wrestlers and help grow the brand overall. I've always said one of the hurdles an NXT call up has to deal with when they come up is that they aren't nationally known, so sure they pop in Florida where NXT films every month, but how do they play when they're seen for the first time in the Midwest? That's not going to be a problem anymore which will make some of these guys journeys much easier. The choice to compete with AEW I think is their mistake. I think if people have to choose between two things they don't know, they are more likely to give the complete unknown the try rather than the third WWE show, I might be wrong but that's just how I feel.

The other thing I wanted to mention was WWE did a house show here in Houston on Saturday and this is the perfect opportunity to talk about how crazy the WWE schedule is. This is an untelevised show, with guys like Randy Orton, Kevin Owens and Charlotte Flair among other big name stars doing matches, they were flying in from Orlando, doing this show and going right back on the road for Raw on Monday night. This is where the road takes its toll on WWE superstars. When it was reported that Dean Ambrose did 200 matches in one year and you start adding it up, even if he was on every Raw and Smackdown that's only 104 shows. The number of house shows these guys do is insane and it's part of how they make their business work but still, the travel and the wear and tear is incredible.

This week on the shows they began the King of the Ring contest, this is something they never should have gotten away from. King of the Ring is just one of those iconic WWE things that should always be an active part of the brand and I'm glad they brought it back. From both shows the things that stick out the most to me is the Kofi getting tough with Randy Orton, Bayley getting a little rough with Charlotte and I'm so damn tired of the Roman Reigns storyline. I do like Seth and Brawn winning the tag titles, and I hope they let this have a nice long simmer before these two match up for Seth's title eventually.

Feel free to check out my brand new comic book Another Day at the Office email me for details or buy a shirt from Side Hustle Ts where some proceeds help people struggling with cancer or listen to Nerd Thug Radio. Thoughts, complaints, events and comments can be sent to corydlg@gmail.com.

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