Superstar Spotlight: Back To The Grind

Bill Pritchard

Superstar Spotlight

It's amazing what being away from technology can do for your information intake, and what you seem to miss out on. I'm catching up on news, and while the recent tornado is sad, one comment bugged me and provoked some thought. I forgot exactly where it was, but someone made a comment about WWE possibly being insensitive about the tornado by letting a tornado tag match take place at Extreme Rules, which also featured Brock Lesnar's F-5 finisher, another reference to a natural disaster. I know we live in an overly PC world, but really? It's a match type; it would be like someone asking the Miami Hurricanes to change their name after a storm hit in Florida. You want to pick on someone for being insensitive? Find a better case, because WWE isn't at fault here.

The other big news coming out of WWE this week is the genesis of Micha… Curt(is) Axel. Paul Heyman's endorsement of the former Nexus member is a nice rebranding and a good way to bring someone back on TV. If you know me, you know my stance on debuts and vignettes, and this one works. Axel was a shocker, and many people already knew he was talented, but he lacked direction in WWE after a failed push. If I remember correctly, his team with David Otunga (speaking of, where the hell is he?) consisted of Otunga's flexing, and McGillicutty… umm… he wore a backwards hat for awhile. Not exactly helping him. I saw a bit of what he did on NXT and was impressed, but he kind of sat in limbo for awhile. I'm glad someone is getting this chance to be a 'Heyman Guy', and now that it's Axel, I'm glad he was rebranded and Heyman is recognizing his heritage. Michael McGillicutty was a terrible name. I probably would have gone with something else, like Joe/Joseph Hennig, but I like the nod to his family, and it's different. Looking forward to seeing what he does next. 

My scaled back schedule over the past few months didn't really allow me much time to watch any Impact Wrestling programming (save for watching Lockdown) so I'm looking forward to resuming normal coverage here on Wrestlezone tomorrow night. While I haven't really watched full episodes consitently, I have seen enough clips to like what I have been missing. Getting past the 'why is Sting in the main event' talk, I really think TNA will have a good summer moving forward. AJ Styles is a modern day Crow Sting, and I think they get it right this time, not like the BS finish at Starrcade 1997. Matt Morgan never lost, he passed out in his match against Sting, so I don't think that's finished. Bully Ray has been awesome, and Aces and Eights has been used better than some factions over the past few years. I'm glad I'm getting back in the thick of things and this week's 'live' episode should be good.

Speaking of TNA's summer plans, I think it will be interesting to see what both top companies do going forward this summer. Last year, WWE got off to a good start with Daniel Bryan and CM Punk pairing together, but the rest wasn't very memorable. While I do miss seeing 'Mr. Excitement' John Laurinaitis on TV, the program with him and Big Show and John Cena was terrible. This year, they look to be in a much better position with several new talents at the top of the card, or near it. Like them, TNA looks to be in a different position than last year, although it might not be as drastic. One the highlights of my summer (as far as wrestling is concerned) was how good TNA's Slammiversary and Destination X were. There are less pay-per-views now, but I think TNA will put more emphasis on making better summer shows when they know they can build on their numbers a bit. Whatever the case, with WWE and TNA, I'm excited to get back into regularly watching wrestling for the first time in awhile.

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