All Elite Wrestling (AEW) Double or Nothing returns to pay-per-view this weekend. How exciting is the card?
WWE is reviving In Your House for the next NXT TakeOver special. What else comes to mind recalling the beloved 90s name?
And, after much anticipation, does Undertaker: The Last Ride live up to the hype?
Join us as we answer these—and more—questions in this week’s Gimme Five!
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1. AEW Double or Nothing 2020 is on pay-per-view this weekend. How excited are you for All Elite Wrestling’s one-year anniversary event?
Grady Hooker (@GradyHooker):
The grandness of the event has gone away a little without the crowd, but I am sure AEW will put on a banger of an event. I’ll be tuning in and keeping an eye on all the action.
This is a mixed bag for me. I’m looking forward to being able to watch it with a few friends however I’m really struggling to enjoy live wrestling as much as normal without an arena of fans helping to bring the excitement into homes.
Sammy G (@RealSammyG):
I’m the first to admit I’ve fallen out of touch with AEW. But the card does look pretty stacked, and I’m interested in seeing what they do.
David Dunn (@david_dunn):
Despite all that’s going on in the world with Covid-19, I don’t think Sunday’s Double or Nothing will be that much different from the original line-up AEW had planned for Las Vegas. AEW might be the promotion that has changed the least in the current climate and, as such, I’m perhaps more excited to see Double or Nothing than anything else as of late.
2. WWE is billing Edge vs. Randy Orton – signed for Backlash next month – as “the greatest wrestling match ever”. Whether it will or won’t be, what currently holds the top spot on your list?
You know I suck at historical questions. To me it isn’t necessarily the bell-to-bell content that makes a great wrestling match, it includes the lead-up and the fallout. To that end, I will go with Austin vs. Rock from WrestleMania 17.
This is such a hard question to answer. I think the one that comes to mind with regards to great story out of the ring and in the ring… you can’t look past Bret Hart and Steve Austin at WrestleMania 13.
My top two are The Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania 25, and Taker vs Triple H inside Hell in a Cell at WrestleMania 28!
It’s been 15 years, and I still haven’t seen anything I like more than Kurt Angle vs. Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania 21.
3. NXT TakeOver: In Your House is WWE’s next featured event, bringing back the beloved 90s pay-per-view series name. What are your fondest memories of In Your House events?
Two historical questions in one G5… The debut of the Hell in a Cell structure was pretty special with Shawn Michaels and The Undertaker clashing at Badd Blood: In Your House 1997. It also introduced Kane, who is such an important part of WWE lore.
In Your House was definitely before my time as a fan – I’ve seen some individual matches from cards but don’t remember going back to watch the whole show. That being said, one match does spring to mind: Shawn Michaels vs. Mankind from In Your House: Mind Games.
The set for starters – I hope they bring it back for NXT TakeOver’s reprisal! While not really considered an In Your House event now, Unforgiven: In Your House 1998 had an exciting build-up post-WrestleMania 14 and saw WWE’s first ever Inferno Match between Taker and Kane!
In Your House: Canadian Stampede is one of the best top-to-bottom pay-per-view events of all time – easily up there alongside WWE Money in the Bank 2011, or AEW Double or Nothing 2019. If you haven’t seen The Hart Foundation’s triumphant return to Canada at the height of their popularity, you’re missing out.
4. Undertaker: The Last Ride is finally out on WWE Network. Has the limited series lived up to the hype?
It has been weird to see Mark Calaway do this type of show, but it’s great and I’m enjoying each of the episodes. Seeing the behind-the-scenes of a character that was so guarded is just plain special.
Absolutely. This has given fans an insight into one of the most guarded men in WWE history. He is one of the few that doesn’t do a lot of interviews, so to get a look at the man behind the character and the struggles he has gone through in recent years has been very interesting.
I’m fully honest about my bias here: Taker is the reason why I got into wrestling in the late 90s. So, to hear him talk about where he’s been, and where he’s at now, that’s pretty freakin’ special! To this day, I continue to use the hashtag #ThankYouTaker as a token of appreciation for all he has done for me as a fan over the past 21 years.
As someone who was there in-person to see Undertaker’s streak end at WrestleMania 30, as well as his WrestleMania 33 main event with Roman Reigns, and his return one year later to take on John Cena, The Last Ride has proved to be a priceless documentary series.
5. IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Hiromu Takahashi has pitched running NJPW’s annual G1 and Best of the Super Juniors tournaments simultaneously later in 2020 to make up for lost time. Are you on board with his idea, or would it be too much of a good thing?
If any company can pull off two great simultaneous tournaments then it would be NJPW. I think they can do it with the extra time to plan out exactly how both of them would flow.
I’m not sure about running Best of the Super Juniors at the same time as the G1. That could mean less tag matches, meaning guys in the G1 would have a night off and, while it sounds a bit cruel, having a night off isn’t really in the spirit of the G1. Maybe Best of the Super Juniors could be run before or after the G1, as NJPW’s calendar does have a lot of openings in it. There’s also the option of doing a small, two-day, winner-take-all tournament at Wrestle Kingdom that includes the champ.
I still have much to learn about the ways of NJPW. I do have a soft spot for tournaments though, which I’ve heard is a big part of how things are done and determined in the promotion. As an outsider, I think it’s a great idea, but I’ll leave this one for those who know better.
Imagine the number of all-time great cards you could put on with Best of the Super Juniors and the G1 running at the same time! In a regular year, it might feel like too much of a good thing, but with all everyone has been through, and all the NJPW action we’ve missed out on, Takahashi’s plan could be the way to get 2020 back on track!