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The Wrestling 5 & 1 5.31.14: Melina vs Eve Torres
Posted by Tony Acero on 05.31.2014





We are days away from Payback, and the card is set…sort of. With the focus sort of being deviated away from Bryan, it has been left to The Shield, John Cena, Bray Wyatt, and Evolution to take over a brunt of the sell job. This week, we'll talk a bit about how well a job they are doing – if at all – as well as full predictions, and a little bit of time to focus on the man that is Batista.





How Much Should We Hate Batista?

It's interesting; Batista is one of those guys who you look at and wonder just who the hell he thinks he is. He is seemingly douchey in every sense of the made up word, and he has an arrogance and build that – if seen at your local bar or club – you'd think "I bet he has a small dick." Don't shy away from that truth, you know you would! When we heard Batista was coming back, there seemed to either be a windless air of apathy, or a collective groan depending on what camp you were settled in, yet no excitement – except from my 40-something year old cousin who would love nothing more than a bath filled with Batista's sweat, but I digress. Point being, no one was really all that excited to see Batista come back, and this was only heightened after his Royal Rumble win that saw an entire crowd take a simultaneous dump on the idea that Batista would be headlining Wrestlemania for the WWE World Heavyweight Title. Whether it was the immense love for Daniel Bryan or the extreme apathy for Batista, wrestling fans everywhere simply didn't want to "deal with it," myself included.



So why bring this up? Why summarize the obvious? Well, I don't want to try and defend Batista, but perhaps we had it just a little bit wrong here? We were under the impression that Batista came back to simply shill his upcoming film and have the backing of a legion of kiddies to take with him to the cinemas. We were under the impression that he most assuredly wrote in a title win at Mania, otherwise why come back, right? I mean, this is the same guy that cried in the middle of the ring and left our beloved sport for greener pastures in an MMA ring and movie set…but what if we were wrong?

Now, I'm not saying Batista isn't a douche, but what I am saying is that maybe we don't know these guys as well as we think we do, or as well as the dirtsheets want us to think we do. The most immediate reports were that Batista was upset regarding his loss at Mania, and his reported "For sure oportunity" being blown. I was all but ready to see some Carlito-caliber matches from Batista or, at most, another walk out – this time for reals. Instead, look at what we've gotten from the 40 year old + big man – quality matches and a seemingly realistic passion within in. If we are to talk each interview with a grain of salt, then why not take much of the salt from the rumors that claim he is happy for Bryan, or the ones that say he wants to put Roman Reigns over. Is that ego talking? Is he trying to latch onto the big names that are in our hearts right now, or is he genuinely in love with the product that gave him a name?



We can be cynics and claim that Batista is back because his movie career didn't pan out, MMA doesn't want a geriatric, and he still isn't done raiding the Divas division, but for whatever reason – maybe it's Whiskey – I'm growing a soft spot for the big guy, even if only due to his in-ring work as of late. Is it stellar? No. But, he has sold the shit out of some matches with Dolph Ziggler, Seth Rollins, and the rest of The Shield. Rollins kicking Batista's ass? Can you visualize it? Well you damn well better, cuz it's happened, and I'd like to think that the egomaniac we all assumed Batista was; the one who only came back for glory and to sell a movie – doesn't exist anywhere but in our minds…

Your Turn: Have we looked at the return of Batista all wrong?



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And the commenter with the most "likes"???

Zach Brinkley: "Slow down, this is how Katie died!"

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Check out our immediate reaction to RAW, thoughts on El Torito losing his tail, the Daniel Bryan problem, predicitons for the upcoming PPV, and more!

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LANA WINS!! While I do side with a few comments that she may be winning due to her Flavor of the Month vibe, I have little control over who votes for what, so next week we will officially welcome Lana into the Hall of Bang! As for this week, we'll take a break from the actual competition and just throw to randoms that I selected out of a….well, I couldn't find a hat, so I just threw a dart at some pictures.

How about we take someone Batista is quite familiar with and put her up against the lovely Eve!?



And now…..







Voting ends Wednesday night and you can vote once every hour!









Payback is all but here, and the card is settled for the most part. There are a few rumored matches such as Jack Swagger vs Adam Rose, and The Usos vs The Wyatt Family, but I think I'll just leave those out (and so, too, should the WWE). Not that they shouldn't happen, it's just that they didn't seem to get nearly as much build as the ones mentioned below. Anyway, here are my predictions!

Hair vs Mask
Hornswoggle vs El Torito

The less said about this, the better.
Winner: Hornswoggle

WWE Divas Championship Match
Paige vs Alicia Fox


They've done…well, something to make Alicia Fox a viable contender to Paige's title, and whether you like it or not, we have to at least be happy that there is some semblance of a character building here rather than just "Insert Diva" vs Paige. Will this last past this match for Alicia Fox, or is this simply a way to sell a PPV? I am thinking, and hoping for the former because even though last Monday's antics of Alicia went on a little too long, it's something we haven't really seen and adds something. As for the match, I still find Alicia Fox a little on the sloppy side, and that backbreaker looks vicious in all the wrong ways. Still, her vs Paige should be at least somewhat entertaining.
Winner: Paige

United States Championship Match
Sheamus vs Cesaro


Although I'm really, really looking forward to the MATCH, the storyline leading into it is somewhat subpar, and feels like they've booked Cesaro into a bit of a corner. Not to say that he can't get out of it, but I still don't think they have a firm grasp on what they are doing with Cesaro. This Monday saw him go full out heel, which I want to believe was a standard set simply due to the PPV coming up, but who knows. Still, Sheamus has had some of the hardest hitting matches in recent history since his return, and I see this one as no different. I'm calling for a DQ here to continue the feud.
Winner: Sheamus via DQ

Intercontinental Championship Match
Bad News Barrett vs Rob Van Dam


The amount of enjoyment I have experienced due to Wade Barrett is synonymous with the amount of apathy I have for RVD. To be honest, I've never been an RVD fan, even in his heyday, but for whatever reason, I see nothing really of value in his last string of matches as they all seem very one-note and dependent upon his opponent. The good news here is that Wade Barrett has been very motivated – and rightfully so. He's the Intercontinental Champion, has a firm grasp on his character, and even though RVD isn't to my liking, he has a fan base that will most undoubtedly be backing him up. Look for Barrett to deliver some bad news to those fans, though, as he continues his reign.
Winner: Wade Barrett

Last Man Standing Match
John Cena vs Bray Wyatt


This story has gotten a bit stale in recent weeks, and although adding the possibility of King getting hurt DID make an impact, I fear fans are tiring of the whole world being in the hands of Bray Wyatt – even if only just a little. No, we are not tired of the character, but perhaps more so the storyline that is behind it. The matches between these two have been borderline average to slightly above average, but people don't seem to mind due to the intensity of the story. I feel this match will be their best yet, partly due to the gimmick behind it. Cena typically does well in these types of matches, and Wyatt is new and fresh enough to probably surprise us once or twice. I feel Wyatt needs to win this one to move on, but feel that they won't be moving on and Cena will get the win.
Winner: John Cena

No Holds Barred Elimination Tag Team Match
The Shield vs Evolution


This will be just awesome as we assume it to be, I feel, and I can't wait for it. I've heard any number of end results, from a Shield clean sweep, to Triple H pinning everyone – even Evolution. For my money, however, I'm placing it firmly in the hands of Roman Reigns. I think he will be the last man standing ala Survivor Series, and take out all three members of Evolution. With the rumored Triple H vs Roman Reigns match at Summerslam still getting a bit of hype, this may be the moment that makes it happen. I'm definitely looking forward to it.
Winner: The Shield – Sole Survivor Roman Reigns

Singles Match
Big E vs Rusev


I'm not 100% sure if this match was added to the card or not, but I think it needs a bit more legs to stand on before it is. If it is going on the card, then they will probably give Rusev the win just because. If they want to make something of this, however, they take their time and give these men a bit more of a reason to fight other than a flag-wielding Zack Ryder
Winner: Rusev

Your Turn: What are your predictions for this Sunday?




The one day hot, next day not Ice Queen….Maxine!!





About the author:

Tony Acero is currently a student at Cal State University of Long Beach. He is double-majoring as a Creative Writing and Literature major. His first book, Through The Looking Glass, was published in April, 2012. School's Out is a short story that found the author arrested due to the severity of its content. Both can be found on amazon.com.

Tony joined 411Mania in April 2010, and currently contributes in both music and wrestling. Tony is an avid drinker of Mountain Dew and Jack Daniels. He is a writer who hardly takes himself seriously, yet has an innate ability to create moments that are both human yet fearful in his writings.

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HALL OF FAME
Greg DeMarco is a graduate of Virginia Tech (Bachelor's in Business Management) and Arizona State (Master's in Higher & Post-Secondary Education). He works in online higher education. Greg started in improv comedy in 2001, making his stand-up debut in 2004.

Greg first appeared as a ring announcer for Rising Phoenix Wrestling in Phoenix Arizona in 2006 and served many promotions in both on-stage and back-stage roles for over six years, most notably Ring of Honor in 2010. He began writing for 411Mania in October 2010, founded The Greg DeMarco Show in May 2011 and opened WrestlingSmash.com (and Wrestling Smash Radio) in January 2013.

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Until next week...







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