AEW is officially in business after holding its first pay-per-view. How does Double or Nothing rank against everything else on offer in 2019?
NXT TakeOver: XXV goes down this Sunday. Which matches and moments stand out the most from the previous 24 TakeOvers?
NJPW’s Best of the Super Juniors is in its homestretch, with three events left before crowning a winner. Who’s been the MVP of the round-robin tournament?
Join us as we answer these – and more – questions in this week’s Gimme Five!
1. All Elite Wrestling (AEW) held its debut event, Double or Nothing, this past weekend. How does the pay-per-view rank against everything else in 2019?
David Dunn (@david_dunn):
Still basking in its afterglow, Double or Nothing certainly feels like an all-time event—comparable in energy to Canadian Stampede 1997, or ECW One Night Stand 2005, or Money in the Bank 2011. If that’s the foundation that’s been laid, I’m on the edge of my seat for Fight For the Fallen and All Out.
Grady Hooker (@GradyHooker):
It was good. There were a few teething issues with production but they will slowly hammer that out when they get rolling. I’m more interested to see how a weekly show stands up, rather than a one-off show, which I think are easier to pull off.
Mister J (@misterjcomics):
AEW have done a remarkable thing, in making people not only excited for the shows, but simply in being a wrestling fan. And what’s more, have succeeded in putting together a show that manages to connect a nostalgic feeling of all that you love about professional wrestling, with a whole new product. Double or Nothing is probably the show of the year thus far, and honestly, I am struggling to see how it will be topped.
Possibly the best event of the year. The only other events that might be close are WrestleMania and Wrestle Kingdom. I was very impressed by what I saw and I know my wallet is going to suffer from buying pay-per-views again
Steve McCleary (@SJMcCleary):
The best event of the year. If they can keep that energy and flow up for future events, while settling those teething issues, they’ve got it made.
2. WWE NXT holds its 25th TakeOver this Sunday, June 2. Which match or moment has stood out the most from the previous 24 TakeOvers?
I immediately think of Bayley vs. Sasha Banks at TakeOver: Brooklyn, and Sami Zayn vs. Shinsuke Nakamura at TakeOver: Dallas.
You make these questions so hard… I’m just going to go with the entire Gargano-Ciampa saga, from teaming together, to the break-up and then championship gold for Gargano.
For me, TakeOver has been consistently one of the best series of shows ever in pro-wrestling. Rarely is there a sub-par match or performance. That being said, the Johnny Gargano vs. Tommaso Ciampa feud and matches, have certainly been the high point thus far in my opinion.
Bayley vs. Sasha Banks: Ironman Match. Closely followed by the first Gargano vs. Ciampa encounter.
3. NJPW’s Best of the Super Juniors 26 wraps up next week, with the finals in Tokyo’s Ryogoku Sumo Hall. Who’s been your MVP of the round-robin tournament?
My vote goes to Will Ospreay. All of his matches have been thrilling, edge-of-your-seat encounters—and he’s still in contention to take out his block and the entire tournament!
I wanted to see Robbie Eagles win. From the response I’m seeing, he’s pulling a lot of fans in with his performances so far, so he’s my MVP as well. A couple of outside picks I wouldn’t mind winning are Marty Scurll and Will Ospreay.
Although it is a biased choice, I have to go with the “Sniper of the Skies” Robbie Eagles. Robbie has for too long been one of the great unknown talents that this side of the world seems to produce… that everyone here knows the talent they have, but the bulk of the wrestling world has never heard of them. After his appearances in PWG, and his matches with Will Ospreay, Robbie Eagles was definitely on peoples lists. With this current tour with New Japan, I truly feel that now, he may be near the top of them.
I haven’t been watching as much as I would like to but I was blown away with the first few matches with Sho and Yoh. I think these guys could be the future of the division and definitely have something to offer outside of their usual tag team.
Robbie Eagles for me. One of the best kept secrets from down under is now sniping the opposition.
4. How would you like to see Brock Lesnar cash-in after winning Money in the Bank?
Lesnar is one of the most dominant Superstars in WWE history—he doesn’t need the element of surprise. I’d like to see The Beast call his shot in advance and use Money in the Bank to headline a major WWE pay-per-view like SummerSlam. But against Kingston or Rollins? That, I can’t decide…
Now he knows he has a year, I could see him waiting a little while before he pulls the trigger. Maybe a big event like SummerSlam or even Survivor Series? With Brock, it will have to be a surprise cash-in after a match.
Have him hold onto it until SmackDown goes to Fox, and have him cash-in on the first episode. Win, lose or draw, it will make a memorable first impression, no matter the opponent.
I really don’t know. Brock is so dominant I’m not sure it actually matters where or when.
Kill Kofi. C’mon, who doesn’t want to feel their hearts break?
5. How do you feel about WWE’s newest title, the 24/7 Championship, now it has established itself across Raw and SmackDown Live?
The 24/7 Championship is just the right mix of chaos and unpredictability that makes for a whole lot of fun.
Love the concept. The belt design is slowly growing on me like a green patch of mould. I look forward to seeing what R-Truth does with it going forward—or whoever won it in the last hour after I wrote this.
I was a big fan, at the time, of WWE’s Hardcore Championship, and rate Crash Holly’s defences thereof during the 24/7 era as some of the most fun stuff WWE was producing in that late Attitude Era. That being said, I honestly don’t see the point of another title, with so many already around the company. I’m not against the concept, but I’ve yet to really see any worth in it specifically.
I’m not a fan of how the belt looks but as a fan of the old Hardcore Championship, I love the 24/7 rule, and with social media, I’m really looking forward to seeing what unfolds. Personally, I’m waiting for the video from a Be A Star visit to a school when someone runs in with a ref to surprise the champ and runs off with the belt.
I’m still in shock that a belt can both be so generic and ugly at the same time. It’s been fun, but it’s hard to understand why anybody actually wants it, given what it does to your life. Also, start getting it defended on social media already! This is what the title is born for.