Gimme Five: Special Guest TK Cooper

Brock Lesnar and John Cena are locked in a game-changing feud for both men. Is this Cena’s most intriguing storyline in years?

WWE NXT has been available to New Zealand audiences for weeks now. Who’s worth keeping an eye on in WWE’s developmental system?

Plus, it’s a busy weekend for New Zealand wrestling with three events set to take place over the course of the weekend. What are we heading out to, and why?

In addition to the regular Gimme Five panel, we’re joined this week by one half of the IPW Tag Team Champions, TK Cooper.

Cooper headlines IPW Rival Turf as part of the Capture the Flag double-ring spectacular, representing The Origin against The Investment.

***

1. John Cena made his return to Raw this week, and will face Brock Lesnar at Night of Champions. Is Cena’s feud with Lesnar his most intriguing in years?

TK Cooper:
No way, well… not yet anyway, Cena and Bray was cool as! Even Cena and Bryan, as brief as it was, was cool to follow along with. Only because you worded the question so specifically I’d say no. It’s building though, and fully want to see where it’s going and whether or not Lesnar is gonna take ol’ yella out the back and put him down for good this time.

Blake:
It’s probably too tough to say, at least for me. While this particular feud certainly is intriguing, Cena has had fantastic rivalries with CM Punk, Daniel Bryan, and Bray Wyatt over the last few years. Saying that his current feud is his most intriguing, as far as I’m concerned, simply underplays his feuds with other great talent.

David:
Cena’s feud with The Rock has to have been his most intriguing. It spanned three WrestleManias, and brought up interesting questions about legacies and part-time performers that you could argue are being repeated with Lesnar. Scenarios where Cena is a legitimate underdog are few and far between these days though, so his series with Lesnar is certainly captivating.

Craig:
Not even close. His feud with CM Punk in 2011 was phenomenal proving to all the haters he was prepared to put someone over to make them a star. It was a gutsy, fearless decision on his part to allow Lesnar to destroy his character like that. I agree with Jim Ross’ assessment that it gives him and creative the window to now make tweaks to his character to freshen him up.

Luke:
No. I don’t really care for the feud at all as it contains John Cena. I felt last year’s feud between Punk and Lesnar was booked much better and was more intriguing and if Daniel Bryan had been healthy enough, a program with Lesnar would have been far more entertaining.

 

2. NXT has been available in New Zealand for the past two weeks now. Who’s captured your attention in WWE’s developmental system?

TK Cooper:
I’m an NXT hipster… ergo, I liked it before it was cool (NXT Redemption is/was my jam) but I’m glad everybody is jumping on the bandwagon because NXT is the show of shows right now. The guys I enjoy watching the most at the moment though are Tyler Breeze, Enzo Amore and Big Cass, Sami Zayn and Kalisto! Shout out to the Vaudevillains, love their stuff too!

Blake:
Obviously the most enticing star currently in the developmental system is former indie star Sami Zayn. There are certainly other great talents in NXT, but Sami is just too awesome.

David:
I’m loving this tag team tournament that’s going on. Kalisto and Sin Cara are super good together, and their match against Adam Rose and Sami Zayn on last week’s episode blew me away.

Craig:
It hasn’t captured my attention at all!

Luke:
The Vandervillians! Kalisto and Sin Cara, and indie darling Sami Zayn! NXT is the best wrestling show WWE is pumping out and I advise everyone who has the WWE Network to jump on this bandwagon fast.

 

3. WWE is reportedly interested in UFC star Ronda Rousey. If you were able to entice a celebrity to step in the ring, who would it be and why?

TK Cooper:
More Hugh Jackman, he decked Ziggler, he’s a badass… and a local, kinda. Wolverine vs. Drax, there’s your hook.

Blake:
Everything that Neil Patrick Harris touches is gold, true story.

David:
Anyone who knows me knows I’m a massive Taylor Swift fan. I wouldn’t want to see her in the ring necessarily, but if we could get her to perform the national anthem at WrestleMania, for example, that would be pretty special.

Craig:
Anyone would be a step down from Ronda Rousey. In my humble opinion she’s the total package, a wrestling fan, and 100 per cent believable from day one if she were to appear on WWE programming.

Luke:
If I could build a time machine, Arnold Schwarzenegger in his prime! That guy would have been a beast!

 

4. Who is the best tag team in pro wrestling today?

TK Cooper:
The Young Bucks, because you can never have too many superkicks.

Blake:
Definitely The Young Bucks; obviously there is room for argument with many other great tag teams, but no one hits a superkick like these two.

David:
You know what? For me, right now, it’s Kalisto and Sin Cara. Maybe it’s just the excitement of having access to NXT and I’m stuck in the honeymoon phase with it, but push those two to the moon!

Craig:
TnT from IPW. If they’re not pro they should be. 100 per cent entertainment.

Luke:
In today’s era, I think it’s hard to look past the Usos. It took a couple of years but these guys are the real deal as far as being the total package as a tag team combination. They have the look, they are exciting to watch and they’re charasmatic. The Wolves from TNA come in at second place purely due to their technical skill inside the ring, but as far as a polished, marketable team, the Usos have my vote.

 

5. It’s a big weekend for New Zealand wrestling with NZWPW, IPW, and Maniacs United in action. Are you attending any of the events, and what are you most looking forward to?

TK Cooper:
I think I might go to that IPW Rival Turf event, DOUBLE RING SPECTACULAR, August 30. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for kids, tickets available at the door, 7pm at Lynfield Rec Centre, doors open at 6.30pm… or something like that I think?

Blake:
I will be attending the IPW event (you can’t really be a New Zealand wrestling fan and miss Rival Turf). I always look forward to any match featuring the true New Zealand Women’s Champion, Evie, but the double-ring capture the flag match is an IPW classic that will, as usual, surely deliver.

David:
I’m off to Beat Down tonight and then I’ll be at Rival Turf tomorrow. Paul Sayers’ quest for revenge against The Nobodies is certainly interesting, but Liam Fury vs. Travis Banks should be the absolute highlight of the weekend.

Craig:
If I can get out of date night with the missus, IPW for sure! I will just tell her we’re going whether she likes it or not!

Luke:
It’s that time of year again! It’s the double-ring spectacular, Rival Turf! IPW shelved the gimmick last year but this year it returns to showcase the collision that will be The Orgin and The Investment! Rival Turf has always been a huge favourite of mine where anything can happen so I’ll be there!