Tim and Tom discuss the fallout of the pro-wrestling mega weekend that featured WWE Extreme Rules, AEW Fight For The Fallen, and Evolve's 10th Anniversary Show on the WWE Network.
Welcome to Tom's Top 5 - Pro Wrestling's Premier Ranking System!
WOW! What a week in pro wrestling! From AEW and the G1 Climax, to Extreme Rules, and even Evolve making their debut on the WWE Network, there was a ton of pro wrestling to watch.
I have decided not to rank the Top 5 because, when it really comes down to it, it’s just splitting hairs between these 5 pro wrestlers.
Now, without further ado, let’s get to the list!
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AR FOX

In an event that had a lot at stake for Evolve, I felt AR Fox was the shining star. There was a massive amount of pressure to be as good as you can on the WWE Network and Fox had all the charisma and style to make an impact.
His in-ring style is captivating, but what really won me over is the teacher gimmick he has going on currently. His tag team partner, Leon Ruff, is his star student and all the talent around the ring during their match were also students of AR Fox.
Watching Fox and Ruff win the Evolve championships and the entire group celebrate the victory had a cool “team” feel to it while everyone still acknowledging that AR Fox was the leader.
I think there is a lot of meat on the bone in terms of storytelling that this championship reign can tell, and I am looking forward to seeing how it all unfolds.
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BRAUN STROWMAN

Simply put, Braun went back to being Braun at Extreme Rules. What initially got Strowman over was dishing out pure destruction; and with his match with Lashley, he went back to tearing shit up.
The slam at the end of the match was a great spot and the loud roar Strowman yelled as he broke through the wall to claim victory was excellent.
Let’s hope we see Strowman cause more destruction in WWE because when Strowman keeps it simple, he is a top talent.
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BARON CORBIN

“What are you gonna do about it ya piece of shit?!” That was what was yelled at Seth Rollins by Corbin after Baron Corbin delivered an “End of Days” to the Raw Women’s Champion Becky Lynch.
The mixed tag match was nothing special, but the heel work Corbin has been doing in recent weeks has been exceptional.
When he yelled at Rollins, I said to myself “Corbin is an asshole”, and that is the whole point of being a heel.
Corbin right now is the best heel in WWE and that is why he made my Top 5.
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LUCHASAURUS

Luchasaurus. It’s a damn dinosaur in AEW! I am not sure what more you need?!
This gimmick is great, and a curveball in the promotion. I really enjoy the “big brother” feel he has with Jungle Boy and his matches have been a lot of fun to watch.
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CHAD GABLE

Full disclosure; Gable is my favorite wrestler to watch in ring. On top of that, I think he is the total package (No, not Lex Lugar).
He can cut a good promo, his moves are believable, and he can sell really well. The reason he made my Top 5 this week is because of his match on 205 Live against “Gentleman” Jack Gallager.
This match was my favorite of the week and it had it all; great chain wrestling, good storytelling, and even a high spot or two.
I have said for a while that Gable should be the 205 Live champ and after this match, it needs to happen sooner rather than later.
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So that's it! The definitive, undisputed, Top 5 wrestling personalities of the industry for this week!
Let me know what you thought! Do you agree with my list?
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It's time for a WWE Smackdown Live Review!
If you read my WWE RAW Review, then you know I was slightly disappointed.
Hopefully Smackdown lifts my spirits.

Okay, I liked this Town Hall. Roman Reigns looked cool, Liv Morgan dissed Charlotte, The New Day made fun of nearly everyone; this was a believable way to get a lot of personalities some good screen time.
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I don't get why they chose Cesaro for this, but it happened.
I hope Cesaro can take this hit and still get back to the dominating performances he was giving us the previous few weeks.
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What will Daniel Bryan's announcement be?
I'm hoping he announces his decision to financially sponsor The Spanish Announce Table!
Since he won't; maybe YOU should!
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When she comes back she will be real?
I'm guessing she'll come back with a different hair color.
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Why are champions allowed to pick their own contenders, for whatever random reason they may choose?
I don't care about this at all, and I'm certain they will not change my tune by the time this match happens.
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Will this lead to Randy Orton being Kofi's new challenger?
That could be decent. Orton delivers pretty consistently and Kofi has been good in the champion role, so I'm looking forward to it.
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I wish this match was shorter, or just that it never happened.
This whole feud has been boring.
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Stonecold Kevin Owens was kicking ass and taking names!
It looks like we're going full speed ahead on this new version of Austin vs McMahon, so we may as well get in to it.
Honestly, this is a great fit for Kevin Owens; maybe this turns into something big.

Yeah, Smackdown was better than RAW. I keep forgetting that Smackdown is moving to FOX in October, and that might just flip everything upside down.
Until that happens, however, this is what we get.
WWE RAW is in Long Island! What will happen after the "exciting" WWE Extreme Rules event the previous night?
Honestly, Extreme Rules felt pedestrian after Evolve and AEW went out and gave it everything they have this past weekend.
I'm sure WWE Superstars would argue that they also give everything they have, and perhaps that's true, but the product still feels overwhelmingly formulaic and vanilla.
I have zero hope that somehow this week's RAW will be different.

This really feels like we're being trolled. Trolled, or outright lied to.
I know they keep blending this into the storylines, but it's really bordering on insulting that The McMahons took time on television to apologize and admit that they have been not listening to the fans, and then just keep doing the same shit.
No one has asked for this. I like Brock, and if he's there regularly, and the stories are written well, then he's absolutely one of the best in the world.
But, that's not what's happening. He's not there regularly, and these stories are NOT stories. They're just half-ass ideas that pass a "good enough" test.
Twelve minutes. It took TWELVE MINUTES of video packages and two dudes STANDING STILL in the ring, to remind us what happened and tell us where we are going next. THIS IS NOT NECESSARY, nor is it good television.
If any other television program had to take roughly a tenth of their airtime to recap and preview, they wouldn't have ever been allowed to air; that's way too much time to sit and wait for the actual damn show to start.
WWE has gotten lazy and is taking their loyal fans for granted.
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Perhaps if you didn't take TWELVE MINUTES to recap and preview, then maybe you wouldn't have had to cram multiple storylines into one match.
Again, there's no way this does anything good for either storyline. It's filler, and it screams to the audience that you can't come up with any better ideas.
There's no explanation for why the hell Robert Roode is involved, or really even why he's on the roster. I have ZERO reason to care for Robert Roode, so I REALLY don't care that now he's suddenly teaming with The Revival.
The payoff at the end of this was for The Club. So, ONLY RICOCHET needed to be there. What a waste of time for The Revival, The Usos, and Robert Roode.
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Why is the jobber squash a thing? Why would I believe that these no-name schmucks are having a match on the most premier professional wrestling program in the history of the world? This just doesn't make sense.
Each week, we see NXT, which you tell us is a developmental league. We hear about the WWE Performance Center, which is a training center for the developmental league. We also saw you put EVOLVE on your network, and gave us every indication that it is a stepping stone to the Performance Center and NXT.
BUT NOW, these guys get a match on RAW. This doesn't make sense.
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This wasn't terrible. I like Drew being away from Shane McMahon sometimes, and being mean to EVERYONE.
I guess we're gonna highlight Cedric Alexander now, which I'm not sure will pay off much. At least he may get a shot to prove me wrong.
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He finally surfaces. I'm still not convinced this will be as "over" once the bell rings, but I hope it finds success.
There is WAY too much potential for storylines and marketing to let this character slip by with no purpose or direction.
I think I've lost faith that WWE can even recognize something like this anymore.
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If history is any indicator, all of this leads to someone getting mad at them backstage, then a match gets booked, and then The Street Profits will be main roster guys.
Except, they'll have no direction or purpose, and will essentially be the Street Experience.
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I was really hoping that this was the beginnings of a much bigger storyline, and I still hold out SOME hope.
But now that they made Mike Kanellis lose to Zack Ryder in LONG ISLAND?
That just makes me feel like all of this is to embarrass Mike.
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The Club beat up Lucha House Party; because they ALSO have three members!
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This was fun. Natty's comeback about being a bad lover was great. I like Natalya, but I usually find a reminder as to why she's never received that real big run.
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I'm torn. I liked this back-and-forth. I liked how Miz instantly lost it the moment Dolph mentioned his wife. But, it's Miz vs Dolph!
Rinse, recycle, repeat.
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Drake Maverick is one of the most entertaining people in the business.
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Not a terrible idea FOR naming a number one contender, but a terrible job AT naming a number one contender.
WWE must think everyone is stupid. Don't tell us "there's no more rematch clause" and then just find some other way to give everyone the rematches anyway.
Seth Rollins vs Brock Lesnar never had much of a story EVER, and it damn sure won't have one this time around.
Who is finding this compelling? What feedback is the WWE getting that is telling them that everyone REALLY REALLY REALLY wants to watch Paul Heyman say the same shit each week, for the next month?
Who really wants this? Somebody give me a real answer. I don't understand.

WWE is full of shit when they say they hear the fans and are now focused on that. It's a big ass lie.
Smackdown has been better than RAW lately, but man, it's really not a high bar to hurdle.
Thanks for reading.
Welcome to the first-ever Tom's Top 5 - Pro Wrestling's Premier Ranking System!
I am using this first Top 5 as a catch all, so I am not going to rank them.
I may start ranking them in future versions,  but for the first Top 5 I am just going to throw this in your face.
Now let’s get started!
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JD DRAKE

Call me a mark but I am buying into the” Blue Collar Badass” as he goes into his champion vs champion match against Austin Theory.
JD has had really good matches and even better promos leading into this match on the WWE Network. I am unsure if he leaves Evolve 131 as the champion but for the time being, he has made a fan out of me.
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MJF

What can I say about this guy that I haven’t already said on the podcast?
He is incredibly talented on the mic and has real heat that you enjoy booing.
Also, his matches keep me entertained with his quick verbal jabs at his opponent and the crowd.
He has been an early standout in AEW, and I look for him to have another memorable moment at Fight for the Fallen.
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STREET PROFITS

Their match this week against Dany Burch & Oney Lorcan was jam-packed with action, and a great way to end this week’s episode of NXT.
On top of the in-ring action they bring to NXT, they have been very fun in their interview segments on Raw.
The future seems bright for this young tag team.
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DRAKE MAVERICK

The 24/7 title isn't really designed to have much of a storyline to it,  yet Drake Maverick has gone above and beyond and actually made me care about this mid card story.
With his segments on Raw featuring his wife, and his short videos across various social media platforms, Drake Maverick has made this title mean something; which is quite an accomplishment.
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KEVIN OWENS

Kevin had an incredible episode of Smackdown. From the parking lot brawlhe had with Dolph, to his “pipe bomb” promo, he came in hot to start off the show.
Not only did he have a great moment to start the show, but he ended Smackdown with a stunner on Shane McMahon.
I have always preferred Owens as a heel, because I think he is more suited for that role, but giving him a babyface push as the “anti-establishment” guy  will do great things for his career.
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So that's it! The definitive, undisputed, Top 5 wrestling personalities of the industry for this week!
Let me know what you thought! Do you agree with my list?
Share your thoughts on Twitter using #TweetTheTable, and don't forget to click some of the scrolling links in the article, it really helps us out!
Another week, another WWE SMACKDOWN LIVE REVIEW. Is Eric Bischoff making changes yet? Will we see some new, intriguing angles? 

Let's see if I get those questions answered.

This was fun, and different. I really like the extra attention being given to breaking up the typical structure. We're not seeing a 10-minute in-ring promo, the opponent comes out and starts a fight, match is made for the main event.

The argument with Dolph and K.O. felt realistic. When people argue, they don't have a witty back-and-forth poetic battle each time. Sometimes they yell over each other, and you can't figure out what they're saying and you just want them to shut and fight.

That's exactly what happened! And then to have Kevin Owens disrupt the show after being thrown out and go on one of the most realistic, seemingly heartfelt, rants about Shane McMahon's presence was astounding.

To be fair; as much as we all hate the overdone Shane McMahon character. It is working. I say that, provided they give it an actual final payoff. Not a Miz payoff that never came. Not a Roman Reigns payoff that also never came.

Have Owens end it, and complete the every man's hero angle.
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I don't care about this match, their upcoming match, or even either of these characters. They have given us absolutely no reason to care about this. Both of these guys have been nowhere to be found, and all you do is bring them back to wrestle each other with no storyline?

Why would anyone care about that?
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I really like when heels don't like each other, and act like dicks to each other. That makes a whole lot more sense than having a bunch of folks with sour attitudes acting like they are suddenly best friends with other people, just because those people also have sour attitudes.
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It's not exactly a hot take to say Samoa Joe has some of the absolute best microphone skills in the business. I really hope when his in-ring career is over; that he is teaching promo classes at the WWE Performance Center.
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In-ring contract signing segments are hit or miss. The concept is very formulaic, and they can wind up falling flat because of that.

This one avoided that fate. I sincerely hope we do get Nikki Cross and Alexa Bliss as Co-Champions. The storyline potential is way greater with that result than with Bayley keeping the title.
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This was done really well. From the writing, to the performance; all of it came off really good.

I don't doubt that The Kabuki Warriors will be a solid tag team, and having a manager helps a lot.

The IIconics were great as usual!
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They told us we would have a Tag Title Summit, or some shit like that. But, all we got was some dudes talking trash to each other, exactly the same way they do in their regular promos each week.

I think Otis could have a lot of star potential in him, but they need to find a way to get rid of some of the blabbering nonsense. It does appear that has been toned-down somewhat, so maybe they all realize this also.
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I have a couple of takeaways from this. The first being that it was a nice touch to have Drake Maverick be seen hiding under the catering table.

Second, they are still ever-so-slightly hinting at possible budding romantic interests between Sonya Deville and Mandy Rose. I'm not sure if they will pull the trigger, or if they are making it just subtle enough to make you wonder.

Either way, it's helping to make this one of the more intriguing storylines in the company right now.
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I feel like this is a mistake. It's looked, over the last few weeks, that they were building Cesaro up. Now, I'm almost certain he will lose this match against Aleister Black.

That's not a death sentence for the Cesaro character, of course. But, it certainly won't exactly make it skyrocket. Either way, I'm sure this turns into a brutal match at Extreme Rules.
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I don't understand this. Shelton Benjamin was already doing and saying NOTHING on television. So why do we now have to SHOW him doing and saying NOTHING on television?
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I like this Kofi Kingston title run. He's done well in the moments he's in, and he's not bad at all. He may not be particularly overwhelming, or overly charismatic, but that's okay.


If there's a shortage of the Rocks and Stonecolds of the world, then we're going to have some champions that are just okay, and why not spread that out amongst as many "okay" performers over the years.

At least then, if they're saying the same things every time, it should sound different coming from different personalities.
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Speaking of Stonecold! I'm really digging the potential here for Kevin Owens to obtain that People's Champion persona.

I'm hoping he interferes at Extreme Rules, helping Roman and The Undertaker win, and drawing Shane's focus on to Kevin moving forward. Then we can essentially have us a new version of the Austin-McMahon angle.

Not bad at all! They had a defined theme throughout the night for the main story of Kevin Owens, and they kept things moving at a decent speed during the show.

I definitely see little improvements each week to the product, so at least we're getting better, slowly but surely.

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Last week's WWE RAW brought us explosions, and a few curveballs thrown our way.

Rumors abound that the "PG Era" is in it's dying days, and that we will now begin to see edgier content.

Let's hope we see some of this tonight!

A Mixed Tag Elimination match. How does an elimination match work when it's mixed gender, and you don't allow intergender fighting?

Essentially, as we all saw, if you eliminate an opponent, you then also eliminate yourself. I feel like they didn't think this through.

They managed to get the go-home show beatdowns in for Baron Corbin and Lacey Evans.

I want them to win the titles. I want Becky and Seth to have relationship troubles because of it. I have serious doubts that my wishes will come true.
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It's kind of weird, now knowing that Heyman is the Executive Director of RAW, that it's not being addressed on the show.

That said, it would really throw a monkey wrench into a lot of the stories if they jumped right into that.

Also, the reports all say that they want to go away from the "authority figure" shtick.

It's probably a great idea to go away from the authority figure always having such a prominent role.

It feels like that's a very limiting box that almost all of professional wrestling has found a way into.

I liked this promo, at any rate. I've said it before, however, there really wasn't anything new for Paul to say about Brock Lesnar, as he's essentially said it all already; about a thousand times.
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Watching The Miz try to act cool with The Usos was hilarious. He did nothing to help stereotypes.

I still loathe the random partnering to combine storylines into a match. It just waters down the focus on both storylines, and leaves me caring less about both stories.
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There's not many more performers that seem to be more naturally entertaining than Drake Maverick.

Even in his TNA days as Rockstar Spud, he never failed to deliver the goods.

I'm glad Drake is getting a chance to run (literally) with the 24/7 Title for a while. I knew he would be super funny with it, and he's proved me right!
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I audibly sighed a sound of annoyance when I heard Rey Mysterio was coming back to TV.

I just, for whatever reason, never caught the Rey Mysterio fandom. I understand his influence and his stardom, it just simply never made me care.

So, I was actually giddy when The Almighty Bobby Lashley beat the holy hell out of Rey.

Rey's reputation certainly won't be tarnished by getting destroyed once by The Almighty, so I think was a great move to build that monster persona for Lashley.
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I like Cesaro looking like the athletic freak of nature that he legitimately is. I also like him having a mean streak, like he's annoyed at the nonsense of everyone else.

I also tremendously enjoy No Way Jose getting his ass kicked. So, this segment was great!
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I guess I missed the announcement that The Street Profits are now the hosts of RAW?

In all seriousness; I like these guys a lot, but I'm not sure what their purpose on RAW is.

If the is no reason for them to be there, it may prove difficult for them to connect with the general public.
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So this wasn't bad, and it fits the storyline. It kinda feels weird to have a side-by-side video interview when we know they're in the same building.
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This feels like the show took a piss break.
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I like this. The new heel AJ Styles it's hitting with me. I like that it feels almost maniacal.

This should be a great match at Extreme Rules, and I think they'll give this title to AJ and have a rematch at SummerSlam.

Meanwhile, The Club will make Ricochet's life hell in the interim.
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I don't like Bayley. I don't mean that in a "she's a heel, boo her" way.

I mean I don't like her in a "if she went away I would never wonder where she went" way.
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I don't know what we're watching here, but I love every second of it. She's crazy, and now the kid might not be his?!?

Is it Becky Lynch's kid? Will Maria give birth to a hand? Who the hell knows? I can't figure it out, and that makes it feel fun.

Maria has went from looking lost in front of the camera, in her early days; to one of the best in the business now.
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Cedric Alexander? I guess it's good enough. Anything is better than The Undertaker.

ANYTHING IS BETTER THAN THE UNDERTAKER!

Did they do this just in case the need a back-up when The Undertaker's back goes out from the long plane ride. Or some other old guy ailment like that?

Well, I do think we are starting to see the beginning of some edgier, rougher content.

Obviously, you can't change everything overnight, so I'll need to patient.

All in all, not a bad show, and hopefully we keep getting better from here!

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