Welcome back TJR readers! Did you spend all day Friday trying to figure out how a show that has new episodes every week can have a season premiere, and missed Smackdown. Perhaps you are one of the seven Tampa Bay Rays fans who were celebrating, and missed RAW. Worry not, for I have returned with another edition of The Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week to catch you up.
10. Alexa Bliss Appears Inside the Firefly Funhouse
The Firefly Funhouse saw a new member this week on RAW. After appearing beside Bray Wyatt inside the ring for the last few weeks, Alexa Bliss joined him inside the Funhouse this week. Bliss appeared at the end of the Funhouse segment, stating that the fun is just getting started. The next day on Twitter, Bliss reacted to a tweet comparing Bliss to a doll that Wyatt revealed as a gift for The Miz’s daughter last year.
— Lexi Kaufman (@AlexaBliss_WWE) October 20, 2020
It is unknown if the similarities are just a coincidence, but that doll does look more like Bliss than this one does. (TJRWrestling)
9. Smackdown to Air on FS1 Tonight
Smackdown will be on a new channel for tonight only. Due to the World Series airing on Fox, Smackdown will air at its normal time on FS1 instead. In addition, immediately following Smackdown, WWE will bring back WWE Backstage for one night only, for a one-hour special. Long time fans of WWE will remember RAW being pre-empted every year, so USA could show a French Poodle walking around at The Westminster Dog Show. Consequently, the Poodle did have more fans than the Tampa Bay Rays do. (TJRWrestling)
8. Chris Jericho and MJF Have a Musical Steak Dinner
MJF and Chris Jericho met over a steak dinner this week, to discuss the possibility of MJF joining The Inner Circle. MJF and Jericho ended up doing a complete song and dance number while singing the Rat Pack Song “My Shadow and Me” during the segment.
— All Elite Wrestling on TNT (@AEWonTNT) October 22, 2020
It was then decided that they would have a town hall meeting with the entire Inner Circle next week to decide if MJF could join the group. Wrestling fans were of course split on the song and dance segment, with some fans hating it while others thought it was the greatest singing performance in wrestling since this… (TJRWrestling)
7. AJ Styles Gets a Bodyguard
AJ Styles summoned his inner Shawn Michaels this week on RAW. During his match against Matt Riddle, Styles introduced his new, over 7-foot-tall, bodyguard. The bodyguard then helped Styles pick up the win when he intimidated Riddle outside of the ring. Riddle then proceeded to rush back into the ring scared and right into the Styles Clash. The bodyguard is Jordan Omogbehin, who was previously used on RAW as both the bouncer for RAW Underground and the large ninja with Akira Tozawa. The Styles and Omogbehin partnership has obvious similarities to the pairing of Shawn Michaels and Diesel from the mid-1990’s. Let’s hope this starts a trend of WWE bringing back other things from the 1990’s, like fans. (TJRWrestling)
— AJ Styles (@AJStylesOrg) October 20, 2020
6. Three WWE Venues Being Investigated for Being COVID-19 Hotspots
WWE found out that things aren’t always sunny in Florida this week. The Orange County Department of Health are investigating the WWE Performance Center, Amway Center and Full Sail University for all being potential hotspots for COVID-19. This is all coming from the same state of course who deemed Professional Wrestling an essential business way back in April. WWE responded to the investigation with the following statement.
“WWE is not open to the public, but rather operating on a closed set with only essential personnel in attendance. As part of on-going weekly testing protocols, Aventus Labs have administered more than 10,000 PCR tests to WWE performers, employees, production staff and crew resulting in only 1.5 percent positive cases as compared to the current national average of more than 5%. Additionally, extensive contact tracing takes place and impacted individuals are placed in 14-day quarantine and then only cleared after they test negative.”
Six months would appear to be a long time for Florida to figure out that wrestling could spread COVID, but if you have ever actually been to Florida you know that six months is quick for someone from that state to figure something out. (TJRWrestling)
5. Title Matches Announced for AEW: Full Gear
The card for AEW’s next PPV on November 7th titled Full Gear, started to take shape this week. Orange Cassidy and TNT Champion Cody will face off next week on Dynamite in a Lumberjack Match, with the winner going on to defend the title against Darby Allen at Full Gear. The Young Bucks defeated Alex Reynolds & John Silver, Private Party, and The Butcher & The Blade to earn a title shot against FTR at the PPV. And finally, Eddie Kingston will try to become AEW Heavyweight Champion when he faces Champion Jon Moxley in an I Quit Match, which also, depending on the results, is what American‘s may be saying a few days earlier. (TJRWrestling)
4. New NXT Tag Team Champions Crowned Leading to Pat McAfee’s Return
Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch defeated Breezango this week on NXT, to become the new NXT Tag Team Champions. Originally it was supposed to be The Undisputed Era facing Breezango for the titles, but they were taken out of the match after both Kyle O’Riley and Roderick Strong were attacked in the back. During the match, a masked man attacked Breezango, leading to them losing the belts. The masked man then revealed himself to be Pat Mcafee, who proceeded to taunt The Undisputed Era. It appears that Mcafee was behind the attacks on O’Riley and Strong, as well as was the person who hired Ridge Holland to attack Adam Cole at NXT Takeover 31. One thing is certain; this is by far the most that a punter has ever contributed to winning a championship. (TJRWrestling)
3. Ali Revealed as the Smackdown Hacker
It has been a strange few weeks for Retribution. After Ali was revealed a few weeks ago as the leader of the group, it looked like Retribution was set to be a big part of RAW going forward. Retribution was not even on the following episode of RAW however, and were then beaten cleanly by the Hurt Business in an eight-man tag this week. To add insult to injury, after losing to The Hurt Business, Bray Wyatt came out and laid out Retribution. It wasn’t all bad for Retribution; later in the night, Ali revealed that he was the Hacker all those months ago on Smackdown. Hopefully, Ali will find a way to hack into the WWE writers’ computers in the future, before his faction is completely destroyed. (TJRWrestling)
2. Daniel Bryan Returns on Smackdown
After being away from the ring for over three months for the birth of his son, Daniel Bryan made his return this past Friday on Smackdown. Bryan came down to give a promo in the ring, but was interrupted by Seth Rollins. Rollins attempted to get Bryan to join him, but Bryan quickly refused the offer. Rollins then attempted to attack Bryan, but quickly left the ring when Bryan countered him. This caused the Mysterios to run down to confront Rollins. Bryan then left the ring at the same time that Murphy decided to come to ringside. At first, it looked like Murphy would fight alongside Rollins against the Mysterios, but instead attacked Rollins and knocked him out of the ring. The thought of there finally being a feud between the new father Daniel Bryan and the soon to be father Seth Rollins, has many wrestling fans excited. Let’s hope just like having a baby, it’s worth the weight. (TJRWrestling)
1. Hell in a Cell to Take Place This Sunday
WWE’s Hell in a Cell is set to take place this Sunday, October 25th at 7PM ET. The show will feature not one, not four, but three Cell Matches. Sasha Banks and Bayley will try to settle their differences as they battle for the Smackdown Women’s Championship inside the Cell. Also in the cell, Randy Orton will see if the third time really is the charm when he once again faces WWE Heavyweight Champion Drew McIntyre. Finally, Jey Uso will once again try to defeat his cousin Roman Reigns for the Universal Championship in the first ever I Quit Hell in a Cell Match. Watching three Hell in a Cell Matches should help Americans prepare for the brutality that is in store for them nine days later. (TJRWrestling)
That will conclude another edition of The Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week. As always, if you like what I do, please follow me on Facebook and Twitter @BackseatBookers and listen to my podcast The BackseatBookers. (Please be aware that it is explicit as my foul mouth never needs a stimulus package.)