Welcome back to another Monday Morning Q&A where I toss out some questions to get a feel of how you guys and gals are feeling about certain topics.
So here are 5 questions I’d like to toss out for this week. I’ll give my answers, too, but the key here is that I want to know what YOU think! So make sure you chime in!
1) The first half hour of Rampage will be going up against an extra half hour of SmackDown on FS1. Do you think either AEW or WWE will have anything special up their sleeves? Who wins that half hour?
I don’t think anything particularly noteworthy beyond the norm is going to happen. That extra half hour on WWE’s part is going to be treated like it’s special just because it’s happening. AEW will carry on operations per usual, but might book the biggest draw segment to start instead of waiting for the main event.
If SmackDown were on FOX, it would seemingly get an 0.5-0.6 rating, as that’s the standard. Last year, it seems the FS1 ratings were more so in the 0.25 range, which is what Rampage is currently doing now that things have leveled out.
I’m expecting WWE to slightly (and I mean barely) beat AEW for that half hour, if not only because Rampage will be pre-taped so people will know the spoilers.
2) Do you think Joe Gacy will beat Tommaso Ciampa and earn his way into the Halloween Havoc title match alongside Bron Breakker?
My first reaction was yes. I figured Gacy would be the scapegoat so either Breakker could win the championship without Ciampa taking the loss, or, more likely, so Ciampa could win it without Breakker losing so they could preserve him.
Since a few days have passed, though, I’m less inclined to believe the scapegoat option is where they’re headed. I think this is more of a red herring and we’ll end up with a straight-up Ciampa vs. Breakker match anyway.
Obviously, the game plan a few months back wasn’t for Karrion Kross to drop the NXT Championship to Samoa Joe just so he could get injured and Ciampa could pick up the ball and drop it to Breakker, who would have likely been named Rex Steiner (a much better name; still salty about that) but I think we might be in that scenario.
For NXT 2.0 to really feel like it’s fully transitioned into something new, Ciampa as champion doesn’t make much sense. Breakker’s had a lot of momentum tossed his way very quickly and seems to have already gotten the approval of the WWE Universe. Maybe it’s time to hot shot the belt to him and just have him beat Ciampa.
At this particular moment, I’m about 50/50 that the belt changes hands, but I ultimately think even if Ciampa retains, it’ll be by besting Breakker with a roll-up or something to prove that the veteran has the experience to retain, while showing that Breakker is “almost there” and “will get the belt soon.”
3) Hangman Adam Page is back. With Dark Order bickering so much over leadership, do you think Page should officially join and even lead them, or how else do you think this should play out?
Page as a partner of Dark Order has been fun, but I don’t think he should lead the group. He’s better as a solo act rather than the head of a faction. Remaining allies with them in the scenario where there are some beat down segments and he could use some help is the better way to go, but not becoming an outright notarized leader of the group.
Dark Order has gone on long enough without a leader that I don’t think it needs one. This idea of a collective voting system may work best. Nobody needs to be directing orders. They should just be working in tandem.
Or, perhaps it’s time to disband the group. Alan Angels isn’t wearing the mask anymore and we can keep him as a tag team with Preston Vance. Anna Jay can still partner up with Tay Conti (an unofficial member to begin with). Colt Cabana has always felt off to me and doesn’t even have a number distinction. Evil Uno and Stu Grayson can go back to being a separate tag team, as can Alex Reynolds and John Silver.
4) The TBS Championship is official. Who would you like to see win the title on January 5th?
The way I see it, unless they sign some new talent like Chelsea Green or Mercedes Martinez, the options are as follows:
- Big Swole – The catch with her is that she hasn’t been wrestling often, so this push would come out of nowhere.
- Jade Cargill – The positive is that she stays away from Baker. Negatives come in that you have two heel champions and she’s not as polished in the ring.
- Kiera Hogan – Brand new to the roster. Maybe she gets a solid push out of the gate.
- Kris Statlander – Having a babyface champion like her might be a good change of pace.
- Leyla Hirsch – Want to make her “legit”? Give her a belt. But is she a dynamic enough character?
- Ruby Soho – While this would very much feel like she failed to win the other title, but she’s good enough for the secondary one, maybe that’s good enough.
- Serena Deeb – Deeb did get brought in to AEW while she was NWA champion. She wouldn’t likely be in line for a Women’s World Championship run for a while with Baker holding it. This could be a good alternative.
- Thunder Rosa – Overall, she’s my pick, but I think she’s actually the best suited to beat Baker and this would take her in another direction.
Going with Nyla Rose or Riho, for example, is basically just repeating what we’ve seen before with the normal women’s title. Hikaru Shida is in a similar boat and she already has this “first woman to reach 50 wins” thing going on.
Out of that list, if I could ignore the idea of Rosa beating Baker, she’d be my personal choice. I just happen to like the idea of Rosa as the next AEW women’s world champion too much and if she won the TBS title, that pretty much can’t happen. With that in mind, I’m actually leaning more toward Cargill. She could likely be the face of this belt and the branding and we know she’ll have different style matches from Baker, so that might be enough of a distinction to separate the two heel champions.
5) Now that we know four of the winners and the full brackets, how do you see the King of the Ring and Queen’s Crown tournaments playing out?
For King of the Ring, Finn Balor is obviously beating Sami Zayn. Zayn doesn’t go to the Saudi Arabia shows, so he can’t be in the finals. On the other side of the bracket, Xavier Woods is going to beat Ricochet, even though King Ricochet does make some sense. Kofi Kingston vs. Xavier Woods is a more interesting match than if Woods fights Jinder Mahal, but booking that is all dependent upon whether WWE wants to do “something different” or they just want a heel like Mahal for Woods to beat.