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    Not sure Jinder needs more 'muscle' around him, he's got plenty himself..
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    The funniest thing about WWEs jingoism this time around is that the villains are from countries that the US has no actual heat with.

    Mahal's entire character is that he's Indian, which is fine but Orton has never been portrayed as a patriotic flag waving type of character so him being the one defending the country makes no sense. Cena has been portrayed that way but is defending his countrys honour against Bulgaria ... who are allied with his own country.

    I think they came up with the flag and colours theme for the PPV marketing first and then tried to build the show to tie into it. It didn't work. The show was beyond dull.
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    The great khaki returns and all jbl says is " that's the creator" WTF
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    any one else wanna see AJ Styles vs Nakamura
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    (Original post by IanDangerously)
    The funniest thing about WWEs jingoism this time around is that the villains are from countries that the US has no actual heat with.

    Mahal's entire character is that he's Indian, which is fine but Orton has never been portrayed as a patriotic flag waving type of character so him being the one defending the country makes no sense. Cena has been portrayed that way but is defending his countrys honour against Bulgaria ... who are allied with his own country.

    I think they came up with the flag and colours theme for the PPV marketing first and then tried to build the show to tie into it. It didn't work. The show was beyond dull.
    I found Cena dropping a 9/11 reference for a Flag Match nobody cares about with a two week build very distasteful.
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    I found Cena dropping a 9/11 reference for a Flag Match nobody cares about with a two week build very distasteful.
    I missed that, haven't been watching SmackDown recently because of the general lack of interest in the stories. What did he say?

    They were disrespectful to both countries last night by dropping their flags on the ground. Repeatedly. That's considered highly offensive to some US citizens apparently
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    (Original post by IanDangerously)
    I missed that, haven't been watching SmackDown recently because of the general lack of interest in the stories. What did he say?

    They were disrespectful to both countries last night by dropping their flags on the ground. Repeatedly. That's considered highly offensive to some US citizens apparently
    It was his usual shtick, but basically said that after 9/11 USA stood tall and it will always stand tall. Comparing a Flag Match v Rusev to 9/11 ffs. Honestly.

    Thing in, America is probably the most easy country to resonate with across the world. It has universal issues and problems, which nearly every culture can relate to. WWE would be better doing that than tapping into some 1980s-inspired jingoism. Even Kevin Owens, in his pre-match promo last night, said he was better than AJ because "he was Canadian." The Mahal/Rusev angles are based purely on xenophobia, and the Owens/Styles feud has undertones of it too. As a Brit, I just can't buy into it.
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    the Punjabi Prison match was awful, it felt like it lasted about a decade and the Singh's and Khali getting involved was just infuriating.

    the sooner Jinder loses the title the better, it's been a dire title run and it has been non stop awful, he's getting slightly better in the ring but still isn't anything like as good as Orton and **** me is he bad on the mic, he sounds like he badly needs a throat sweet and he repeats the same dreadful boring lines over & over & over.
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    RAW is so so far ahead of SmackDown at this point. I'm so glad we're getting a Fatal 4-Way at Summerslam. That's absolutely the right decision. WWE had apparently wanted it to be a Brock Lesnar vs Roman Reigns, but now having Braun Strowman or Samoa Joe in the main event would have been a farce. The four are absolute powerhouses and it will be a real hoss slugfest. The opening segment last night was electric - one of the best Monday night brawls I've ever seen - and Strowman consistently being showcased is so smart. He's becoming one of the most dominant men in WWE history.

    There were plenty of other high points to Monday's show, too. Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins' teasing of dissension is so smart. It makes complete sense for Ambrose to be untrusting of Rollins, and the intrigue surrounding their relationship has added mystique and breathed life into two stale characters. Rollins being turned on by a heel Ambrose will help elicit sympathy for somebody who is currently a stale babyface, but I'm not sure that will happen. I don't want a Shield reunion - the two beat the Miztourage in the main event and the Miz, Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas don't seem a big enough threat to warrant a Shield reunion - but I'm not sure WWE sees Ambrose as a midcard/upper midcard heel. We shall see. This kind of felt like the culmination of the feud, especially with the announcement the Miz will host Jason Jordan on MizTV. That hints at a Miz vs Jordan feud, which I would welcome with open arms. We saw Jordan beat Curt Hawkins in a squash showcase last night - but he obviously needs bigger challenges if he's to shine in his role.

    Having Bayley go over to become No 1 Contender to Alexa Bliss may seem odd, but it's clearly geared up to spark a Sasha Banks heel turn. Banks lost last night and showcased a new darkness we haven't seen before, even in her promo before the match. I'd love to see her go heel at Summerslam and cost Bayley the title. A month ago, Bayley was as dead as anything. Now she has relevancy - and a Banks vs Bayley feud has money written all over it. Elsewhere, Nia Jax beat Emma in a squash after the latter called out WWE on Twitter for under-utilising her (ridiculous) and the Club are seemingly babyfaces now. They faced off and lost to the Revival, before the Hardy Boyz descended on the ring and caused the heels to retreat. If Jeff and Matt are battling with Dash and Dawson, I'd love the undervalued and under-utilised Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows to enter the title scene, facing Sheamus and Cesaro.

    To be fair, there were a couple of missteps. We saw Elias Samson beat Finn Balor in a No DQ match in the opening match of the night. Balor showcased a meaner side, which is welcome, but was cost the win by Bray Wyatt, who did his usual trickery to get the upper hand. We've seen it a thousand times before at this point. But the match itself was solid, Samson - one of the best heels on either roster - picked up a landmark win, and a Wyatt vs Balor feud could spark the return of the Demon. Elsewhere, Big Cass ran over Enzo in a rematch from Great Balls of Fire (something I didn't really enjoy) before he beat down the Big Show, too. We're clearly set up for a Cass vs Show Summerslam bout - but why? Cass has got the upper hand two weeks in a row now. This did nothing to advance the feud, either. It felt like a repeat from last week. We also saw Daviari insert himself into the cruiserweight title picture - something which is curious given his lack of screen time so far. He left Neville and Akira Tozawa on the mat.
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    I'm glad WWE stuck with Roman Reigns, because he's developed quite a lot this year as a character and he certainly puts on some entertaining matches against the right people. Granted, it took him a while to get to this state but at least he's there now.

    As for Summerslam? Strowman HAS to win, his title reign is overdue and he's riding on top of a lot of momentum currently. It sets him up for a rematch with Brock at night of champions, and could also set up another great main event for Reigns vs Joe.
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    The midcard SmackDown title is surpassing the WWE Championship, so WWE conspires to devalue the US strap by booking a series of short title reigns. It's just so disappointing and undervalues the belt. That said, I was a big fan of the opening segment - Chris Jericho returning was a genuine surprise, and I popped - and the main event Triple Threat, which saw AJ Styles outlast Kevin Owens and Jericho. The bout was great and these three have history and great chemistry. Owens' post-bout rampage was really enjoyable, too. I don't necessarily see where these three go now: maybe insert Shinsuke Nakamura into the title scene vs Styles and have Jericho and Owens have a blow-off bout before going onto separate things? Fozzy doesn't start touring again until September.

    Speaking of Nakamura, he beat Baron Corbin in a Battleground rematch which was infinitely better than their PPV. Still, Nakamura isn't getting enough offense into a match, and WWE still doesn't know how to handle him, but his picking up a win in what seemed like a definitive end to the feud was smart. We saw John Cena cut his usual, worn pro-America shtick and thrust himself into the WWE Championship scene, with him and Jinder Mahal clashing in the ring on the mic. He and Nakamura will have a No 1 Contender's Match next week. I think this is a special match and throwing it away on SmackDown with minimal build is a real let down, but the possibilities are endless. I fully expect WWE to pull the trigger on another foreigner vs patriot hero angle. But imagine if it embraces Nakamura. The possibilities of a Nakamura title reign are endless, and we'll see fresh match-ups. Mahal's reign has been so underwhelming and he simply must drop the title sooner rather than later - preferably at the next PPV.

    In terms of other in-ring action, Mike Kanellis - who is clearly already a low priority for creative - suffered another defeat after losing his first feud vs Sami Zayn at Battleground. He and Aiden English lost out to Zayn and Tye Dillinger, who it was refreshing to see have something to do on SmackDown. He was fed to English at the Battleground pre-show, which was just farcical. That said, there was a severe lack of Breezango - after their mystery attack at the PPV - last night, as well as Luke Harper, Erick Rowan and Chad Gable. It is great that WWE is showcasing Zayn, but not at the expense of Kanellis preferably. He and Maria have potential. We also saw Naomi and Natalya clash backstage, previewing their Summerslam bout, before Charlotte and Becky Lynch picked up a win over Tamina and Lana, who the crowd chanted "you can't wrestle to." They aren't wrong. I don't see where Charlotte/Lynch fit at Summerslam, so WWE needs to find something for them. The only other segment of note was the Usos ambushing fan favourites The New Day - a great heel move - and ending their title celebration prematurely.

    205 Live was decent, with two decent bouts, as Daivari beat Neville via count-out in the opener, with Akira Tozawa on commentary. Is it just me, or is Neville's shtick getting a tad old now? I don't think the sheer lack of credible opponents is helping him. He needs a decent, long-running feud with a genuine babyface challenger. He is suffering from a lack of competitiveness, and he's beginning to feel stale slightly. It's still early days, though. The main event saw TJP and Tony Nese beat Cedric Alexander and Rich Swann in an entertaining bout, which enthralled me much more than the Brian Kendrick/Jack Gallagher in-ring segment which preceded it. Their feud already feels stale at this stage.
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    I haven't been following WWE for a while but can someone please explain to me why on earth is Jinder Mahal WWE champion?!?
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    (Original post by mr T 999)
    I haven't been following WWE for a while but can someone please explain to me why on earth is Jinder Mahal WWE champion?!?
    WWE are expanding into the Indian market. That is the sole reason.

    Of course we don't know the details, but if someone said to you 'they wanted to own the Indian market, so they told Jinder to beef up by any means necessary and he would be pushed as their guy and they'll turn a blind eye to the means he used', that person might not be wrong.
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    (Original post by ozzyoscy)
    WWE are expanding into the Indian market. That is the sole reason.

    Of course we don't know the details, but if someone said to you 'they wanted to own the Indian market, so they told Jinder to beef up by any means necessary and he would be pushed as their guy and they'll turn a blind eye to the means he used', that person might not be wrong.
    OK I see so they want to appeal to the Indian public. But still Jinder Mahal as WWE champion is just funny ngl :rofl:

    He has bulked up quite a bit tho I'm still shocked they made him champion he preforms like a mid carder to me I don't see him as main event material.
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    (Original post by mr T 999)
    OK I see so they want to appeal to the Indian public. But still Jinder Mahal as WWE champion is just funny ngl :rofl:

    He has bulked up quite a bit tho I'm still shocked they made him champion he preforms like a mid carder to me I don't see him as main event material.
    They've literally used the only Indians they have and know. They even had to bring back Khali just to add numbers.

    How he performs doesn't even matter, he's Indian and he's the champion, that's all India will care about.
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    Some speculation that the Styles/Owens finish was at Battleground was a botch. Some say that Owens was scheduled to win, with that decision being made after the start of the PPV. But others say Styles was planned to get his shoulder up at the finish, which obviously didn't happen. I guess we'll never really know, but the ending did seem abrupt and poor.
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    Plan is to have Jason Jordan vs The Miz, apparently. I think it's far too early for him - but we'll see. If any heel can make the crowd invest in him, it's the Miz. Kevin Owens vs Shane McMahon is a key possibility, apparently, too. To be fair, I wouldn't be against that. Shane and AJ had arguably one of the best matches at Mania, and putting Owens in that position would show the company's still high on him.
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    So, Brock Lesnar will "leave" WWE if he loses his belt at Summerslam. That's according to Paul Herman on RAW anyway. Is this WWE spoiling the ending of the upcoming Fatal 4-Way? Lesnar is advertised through No Mercy. It's a perfect way to write Lesnar off TV though. I'd have him return at the Royal Rumble or the night after, personally.

    It looks like we'll be getting Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins vs Sheamus and Cesaro for the WWE RAW Tag-Team Championships. The latter lacks challengers and yet we saw The Hardy Boyz beat The Club - Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows - in the opening match, before the two teams brawled with The Revival, who were on commentary. I think Ambrose and Rollins having a run in the tag division, which has seen the Dudley Boyz depart, Enzo and Cass split and Sheamus/Cesaro turn heel, would be beneficial and add babyfaces to an otherwise depleted division. We saw Seth Rollins clash with Sheamus and Cesaro backstage before he picked up a win over the former in singles action. The heels tried to beat him down but Ambrose rushed in. Ambrose/Rollins' relationship is currently being told really well. It's a rare case of in-depth storytelling really adding to the product. WWE rarely gives us that.

    The Miz seems destined for an IC programme with Jason Jordan, as widely touted. He hosted him on MizTV last night and the two got physical, with Jordan gaining the upper hand after the Miz did his best with the promo work. Jordan is currently coming across incredibly bland, and that needs to change, but if any heel can get him over, it's the Miz.

    In other good news, it seems WWE has dispensed with the purple ropes forever. We saw TJP, Tony Nese and Daivari lose a fun, energetic six-man tag to Rich Swann, Cedric Alexander and Akira Tozawa last night. The latter got the pin after bravely battling through his hurt shoulder.

    Bray Wyatt cut yet another Bray Wyatt promo before Finn Balor sent him scurrying. At this stage, something needs to be done to breathe life into this feud. What makes it different to any other Wyatt programme? I'd love Balor to embrace the Demon to beat Wyatt. It has been a year since we saw it. It did nothing to advance their Summerslam story, really, much like the Bayley/Alexa Bliss feud.

    After Extreme Rules, WWE needed to press reset on Bayley and now this underdog story feels incredibly rushed. I'm sure Sasha Banks will turn on her - and rightly so - but having her in a high profile spot on the card so soon after being irrelevant is disappointing. Bliss, probably my MVP since the Superstar Shake-Up, has been booked incredibly weakly recently and suffered yet again last night after Bayley beat Nia Jax and fended off interference from Bliss. Bliss is stellar on the mic and great in the ring and needs to be booked similar to Neville as a champion, in my view.

    The most intriguing part of the night - and arguably the biggest misstep - was WWE ending with Big Cass beating Big Show. Sure, it was a fine segment - but nothing extraordinary. It seemed like a placeholder segment and seemed a rehash of everything we've seen post-Great Balls of Fire. Cass beat down Enzo Amore before Big Show gained an upper hand to close out the show, but the stellar triple threat between Roman Reigns, Braun Strowman and Samoa Joe should surely have been the main event.

    It was a PPV-worthy match between the three hottest stars in the company. Reigns pinned Joe - bit of a waste considering he has never beaten him before (I'd have liked it in a singles match on PPV) but the action was 10/10. Given WWE booking, you'd imagine every one of these stars will gain the upper hand ahead of the Fatal 4-Way to come. The only thing different now is the added intrigue by Heyman in the opening segment which suggests we could see Lesnar retain against all odds and drop the strap shortly after.

    Oh we also saw the newly named Elias (WWE dropped Samson from his gimmick, much like Big E Langston, Alexander Rusev, Antonio Cesaro, Adrian Neville before him) beat down Kalisto in an underwhelming squash. Elias has wins over Dean Ambrose and Finn Balor at this point - but he's lacking a babyface to feud with. He generates genuine heat and animosity from the crowd. I'd love to see him given a decent mid card feud.
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    Lesnar is going back to UFC after SummerSlam, though he's still under contract with WWE till after Mania next year so chances are he could return to WWE at some point, I have heard rumors that he might be playing UFC and WWE off against each other money wise so it could well be a case of WWE let him do the UFC fight then sign him up to a big new contract.
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    (Original post by Just Rory)
    Lesnar is going back to UFC after SummerSlam, though he's still under contract with WWE till after Mania next year so chances are he could return to WWE at some point, I have heard rumors that he might be playing UFC and WWE off against each other money wise so it could well be a case of WWE let him do the UFC fight then sign him up to a big new contract.
    WWE stands to gain massively from a Lesnar UFC fight - if they get him back afterwards, of course. Win or lose, and Lesnar would lose imho, WWE would reap benefits.
 
 
 
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