I forgot I did one of these colums just last year. Thankfully, I was reminded and we’ll keep this tradition going…
The Era of the Injury Continues: While I called yesterday the “Year of the Injury”, this year we saw even more how much of what happens on television is molded by injuries. Cena came back, then went back out the door with injury eight months later.
The year of WTF: CM Punk gets the title out of nowhere, and then looses it just as uncerimoniously. Jericho punches out Shawn Michaels’ wife the hard way. Kane does a SD Jones to Chavo for the ECW strap, then turns crazy and hates short, masked people out of nowhere. Cena came back after the ultimate swerve of stating his return time just days before.
I came around to the heals: This year, I became a big fan of some bad guys. When we started going to IWC, I remember much of the crew hating Dennis Gregory as a wrestler. But the more shows we see, and the more response to the rising “bum” chants and telling the kid in the front row, don’t worry, “wrestling is fake. But that was real”.
The second was Randy Orton. Yes, the gay porn natural that I just wanted to punch in the face. Best. Heal. This. Year. Jericho stepped to new personal hights, and had a great deal with Michaels, but Orton can do it all himself. His return from his injury where he just berated people for two or three months was highlight moment after highlight. His “slither” when attempting his finisher just feels creepy. Kudos, you gym bag crapping asshole!
TNA? Are you still here? Not to bash TNA yet again, but this year proved that something is wrong. I’ve often had spurts of “TNA is doing great right now, it’s made the turn” only to be shat upon by the next ppv. This year, it didn’t muster enough interest for even the regular weekly watching. There’s stuff happening. But nothing to capture the imagination of the regular wrestling fan. But some things they’ve done right. Putting Mick Foley on TV. That’s the guy that cam make any shitty storyline work. Main Event Mafia. It is the old WCW storyline. Done much better. It started with Sting and the epitome of “Crossing the Line” but got muddled with stuff that didn’t make sense. But yet, the whole thing is better than the sum of it’s parts.
Mayhem got Mobile: While 2007 brought fans/new friends to us from Longon and the Bronx, this year, we went there. In January, we visited Mad Mike in New York City and experienced that Cena comeback moment to Royal Rumble at Madison Square Garden. In August, I had a chance to go back to see Ring of Honor a block away at the Hammerstein Ballroom. Will and Veronica headed up to Boston to visit Miss Ashley Hoover. Not to mention visits from both of our guests in December (and Mike in July for IWC Basebrawl).
Pittsburgh Wrestling is Still King: We started with Sandman as a regular. Saw IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion Low Ki (now just signed to WWE) Motorcity Machineguns, 2 Cold Scorpio, Davairi (now in TNA), Kurt Angle, Shane Douglas, and two of the greatest ensemble shows showcasing the best of Pittsburgh wrestling in the Devil Budakan Memorial Show and WrestleFest (thought the latter was blown away on attendance by the Penguins in the Stanley Cup, unfortunately. ) The Mayhem followed suit by having a record number of interviews (of which, Super Hentai won the Mayhemmy) Not to mention the rise of two IWC regulars to WWE fame in Evan Bourne (Matt Sydel) and CM Punk.
Matches of the Year
Flair vs Michaels If you didn’t feel it when Michaels whispered “I love you. I’m sorry” before a career ending
Michaels vs Jericho Pick one. the unsanctioned match. The ladder match. This was the feud that stamped the year for WWE, and almost eclipsed the Flair one.
Bourne vs Mysterio Even Bourne is the guy that got a chance to step up to RAW from ECW and made the most of it. Many can take a lesson from this guy with this match, and his Cyber Sunday match with Matt Hardy.
Edge vs Undertaker Hell in the Cell. Edge consistantly does the greatest work. He’s the reason we watched Smackdown. He still eclipses Triple H in storylines on Friday Night. Fantastic. I can’t tell you if the build or the match itself was the highlight. The Foley confrontation. The breakdown laying ringside with his “wife”. The crazy TLC match with Taker earlier in the year. All stuff we’ll talk about for years.
Rowe vs Xion Both of these guys were explosive. This is the title match (from November Pain?) not the tournament match, which was also good. I just remember the Court Time rumbling with each near fall, or Rowe rolling Shiima’s head into the first row with a clothesline.
Demarco vs Xion It was safe to say that no one ever predicted the new IWC title holder would come down to these two, even though the Mayhem was pulling for Demarco the majority of the time. These two had great matches playing their strengths moving up the tournament, and ended it with a good match that showcased both of these guys stepping up to the limelight.