This Week in Wrestling – 2/29/16

Shane O’Mac is back!

If you were paying attention to guys like Dave Meltzer and keeping up with the behind-the-scenes of WWE through r/SquaredCircle, you heard two things that ended up coinciding. The first was that Undertaker’s opponent was going to be someone not on the main roster, including those who are injured. That made things interesting because no one had a concrete idea at that point, people tossed around Rock, Austin, Michaels, Goldberg, just so many different names. Before we found out who that opponent would be, the night after Fastlane we were told to expect something big to the point it was called “a late Christmas present”.

That ladies and gentlemen, was the return of Shane McMahon.

Shane has been gone I believe for six years now. If I remember correctly the last time he was on television it was during Triple H’s rivalry with Randy Orton and Legacy (Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase Jr.), so it’s been a long time. Unsurprisingly Shane got a massive pop from the crowd, almost tearing up during the segment he was featured in. And then we got the big news, Shane would be Undertaker’s WrestleMania opponent and in Hell in a Cell no less! The storyline is simple, Shane has dirt on Vince and has essentially been blackmailing him for money for a while now, only this time Shane wants control of RAW. If he wins, he gets just that, but if he loses Vince gets whatever it is that Shane’s blackmailing him with. Only in WWE can a blackmailer get the pop and not the victim. Awesome.

I have to admit, I expect Taker to win this match, no matter how badly I want to see Shane as the new authority figure on RAW. It’s become clear that the Authority gimmick has lost all its heat, it’s no longer a bad guy heat, it’s a go away heat. Hell, they’re cheering the leader of the Authority because he’s facing a man they don’t like in Roman Reigns. The Authority needs to go away, but I feel that’s not going to happen for one very simple reason.

Shane still has a ton of business ventures he’s running, it’d be very hard to believe that he’ll be around for a significant amount of time. He might be around after WrestleMania but I’d expect that amount of time to be very short, like gone by SummerSlam amount of time. It’s been commented on that he lives in New York so it wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility that he could be around, perhaps filming a bunch of “backstage segments” at WWE headquarters as the GM of RAW or something to that extent. But to assume he’ll be at the arena every week for RAW is preposterous.

Regardless, it’s fan-fucking-tastic to see Shane back and seeing his training videos he’s been posted on Twitter, he looks to be in great shape. Count me excited!

The Elite/New Day Saga

A fun little rivalry going on here between arguably the two biggest wrestling promotions in the world, WWE and New Japan Pro Wrestling.

Ever since Kenny Omega took the reins of the Bullet Club, casting AJ Styles out and now Karl Anderson and Doc Gallows leaving New Japan for presumably WWE, he’s been kicking ass, taking names and with the Young Bucks at his side, challenging the hottest trio in wrestling right now, The New Day.

Omega has already been having arcade battles with Austin Creed (aka Xavier Woods) and the videos have been posted online, though I’m unsure if they’ve all been released. So there’s already a history there, however Omega’s taking it one step further. At the recent Honor Rising shows with New Japan and Ring of Honor teaming together, Omega and the Young Bucks defeated Toru Yano and The Briscoes to win the NEVER Openweight 6-man Tag Team Titles. So to celebrate that, they’ve been posting videos online challenging the next best trio in wrestling, again The New Day.

Now obviously this will never happen, there’s no way WWE would let any of their guys wrestle (even if it was on their program) someone from another promotion, even though WWE honestly has zero competition and it wouldn’t make a lick of difference. But that’s just how Vince and WWE operate.

Oh well, we can dream, can’t we?

WrestleMania 20,000 Seats Short?

With WrestleMania just over a month away, we’re starting to hear reports on the potential numbers in terms of tickets sold for the event. Dave Meltzer has mentioned how he’s been told they still have about 20,000 tickets left to sell and they may not sell much more now. This is because given all you’d have to set up for the entire weekend whether it’s travel, hotels and whatever else, it’s too much work on short notice for anyone who’d need to do more than drive a couple hours to the event in Dallas. So the likelihood of WWE selling all 20,000 of these tickets becomes very unlikely.

This comes as little surprise to me honestly, the pay-per-view itself is not shaping up to be that spectacular. The main event has the potential to get booed out of the building, since we’re all assuming Roman Reigns will win. We also don’t know a ton of matches still, we can assume but we’re not in the open yet on at least half the matches. That’s not good for a show that’s supposed to be the biggest show of the year.

Ah well, we’re all looking forward to NXT: Takeover Dallas more anyways. And it’ll be better too.

Stardom Wrestling Available via YouTube

We all look at NXT as the home of the best women’s wrestling on the planet right now. But now, a large part of the world will now have the ability to watch another company who offers some of the best women’s wrestling around.

Stardom announced over the weekend the rollout of Stardom World, a YouTube subscription channel that will be posting the majority of their events for $4.99US a month. For me here in Canada that would come to about $6.99, but it’s still a great deal if you are into women’s wrestling.

I’ve been watching Stardom here and there whenever I could find a VOD of an event they ran. Some of my favourite female wrestlers right now are featured on Stardom, girls like Kairi Hojo and Io Shirai. If you’re looking for another outlet for good women’s wrestling, Stardom World may just be up your alley.

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