It’s a pay per view week and that really shouldn’t mean a lack of a major story. There’s a lot going on in WWE at the moment but nothing really stands out enough to talk about it for a long time. For situations like this, there is something I can pull out to make things a little bit easier: a feature called In Other News, where I take quick looks at some stories going on in wrestling this week. These aren’t necessarily headlines, but they’re worth a look on their own.

These are in no particular order.

Kofimania Is Still Running Wild

This week’s SmackDown Live opened with SmackDown World Champion Daniel Bryan calling out his #1 contender Kevin Owens. The segment saw Bryan being drowned out by chants for Kofi Kingston, which Bryan acknowledged. The fact that Bryan reacted to it says that we’re going to be seeing Kingston in the World Title scene going forward, as WWE isn’t likely to just drop something while still acknowledging it.

I mean, he did get ripped off:

In other words, it’s looking more and more likely that the title match (and possibly a title change) is coming up at Wrestlemania. Kingston winning would be a huge feel good moment and that’s the kind of thing that Wrestlemania can always use. With the right structure, the match could be an instant classic and the title win could be one for the ages. I’m just hoping we don’t have a triple threat, but I’ll take what I can get.

The Poor Revival

After a few weeks of losses on Monday Night Raw (as in the weeks after winning the Raw Tag Team Titles), the Revival had a much better week this time around as they won by disqualification due to interference instead of taking another pinfall loss. That’s something positive, right? It’s been a bad time since the Revival won the belts and I don’t see that getting any better.

This Is Better:

Odds are they’ll retain on Sunday at Fastlane, which is the worst thing that could happen to them. It means they can keep losing non-title match after non-title match because they still have the titles and in WWE’s mind, that’s all that matters. I’m sure losing these short matches is EXACTLY what WWE should do to keep Revival around, because why would Revival care about doing what they love as long as they get to hold increasingly meaningless titles?

MLW Is Getting Better….Again!

It seems that I’m always singing these guys’ praises. MLW is a great example of what Jim Cornette (and hey he’s doing commentary for them) meant when he said he wants a degree of difficulty of five and an execution of ten instead of the other way around. What you get in MLW isn’t going to reinvent the wheel, but you’re going to get some entertaining wrestling with some fun characters.

This Just Looks Cool:

One thing that they certainly do well is to build up their shows focused on the midcard acts, which is straight out of the NXT playbook. It’s not the kind of place where there’s the World Champion and then everything else is beneath that one story. You very well may see the Middleweight (Cruiserweight) Title as the focus of a show and it’s the most important thing going on. That’s very important and it’s something that can make a show a lot better down the line as you aren’t just sitting around waiting on one story to get the focus. Why can’t other promotions learn that?

Someone Explain Lacey Evans To Me

Since Elimination Chamber (which seemed to be an error more than anything else), Evans has come out, walked down the aisle, said/done nothing, and walked back up the ramp. That’s it. She hasn’t had a significant promo in weeks, she’s had a total of one significant match on the main roster since being called up (and that was over a month ago) and now she’s the Sassy Southern Belle.

Try To Get This Song Out Of Your Head:

There have been rumors about Evans being the next big thing in the women’s division and….really? Based off of this? I’m really not sure what the point is supposed to be having Evans come down there every so often though she has a catchy song and a unique look, but I’m not sure what good this is doing for her. Maybe she’s going to get a rocket attached to her soon, but right now I’m not seeing anything other than a bunch of cameos that are becoming running jokes.

Samoa Joe Is US Champion

This is a late addition to the list as it only happened last night on SmackDown Live. After debuting on the main roster about two years ago, Samoa Joe FINALLY won his first title and it was treated like a big deal. In a way I’m happy as I find Samoa Joe to be one of the better performers in WWE, but at the same time I’m a little worried as he’s the kind of guy who seems like he could be used to put over almost anyone in front of him and be expected to be fine because he still has the title.

It’s A Long Time Coming:

That being said, I’ll take Samoa Joe for the promos alone, though I’m a bit worried about the idea of him never showing up on TV anymore. For reasons that I don’t understand, WWE has a tendency to put the US Title on someone and then have them disappear for the better part of a month. It seems like a rather bad idea but it’s something that has happened with more recent champions than not. Hopefully Samoa Joe doesn’t get the same treatment, but at least he got the title in the first place.

The Shield Is Back…Again

I’m very happy to have Roman Reigns back again, but this latest Shield reunion just feels like a waste. Even before Reigns’ hiatus it seemed that the team was going to split, mainly because these reunions seem to be cursed. We’re getting a six man tag at Fastlane out of it and that’s all well and good, but I just can’t bring myself to care about the whole thing. It’s only a few months removed from the last split and this one feels forced.

You Might Have Seen This One Before:

I mean, it is forced and it’s only happening to give the fans something to care about with Sunday’s nothing pay per view, but it comes off like something thrown together at the last minute. Just seeing the guys together in the vests with the music is cool, but I’d really hope that this isn’t the best thing they can do. Having one of the most dominant stables of all time beat up three thrown together targets isn’t the most thrilling thing in the world.

Drew McIntyre Is Just A Guy

Remember a few months ago when McIntyre was a dark horse candidate to win the Royal Rumble? Well now he’s lumped together with Bobby Lashley and Baron Corbin as cannon fodder for the latest Shield reunion. I know I’m a huge fan of the guy and wanted to see him get the rocket push, but is this really the best they can do for him? He’s nowhere near a lost cause yet, but this is hardly what I was hoping to see from him.

Here He Is…With Everyone Else:

McIntyre has all the tools that you could ask for but he spent eight months shackled to Dolph Ziggler and now he’s randomly going after the Shield, which he’s still taking credit for destroying. Can we get him something better than being a midcard heavy who is there to make one of the three former World Champions look good? I’m worried about him taking the fall when perennial midcard nightmare Baron Corbin is right there. Just….do better.

The Stephanie McMahon Show Is Back

This is something that is just going to happen all the time and there’s nothing that can be done about it. Over the last few weeks on Monday Night Raw, what should be one of the biggest stories of the year is turning into the Stephanie McMahon Is Awesome Hour, with McMahon doing stuff like lifting Becky Lynch’s suspension, making Charlotte vs. Lynch for Fastlane and standing up to Ronda Rousey.

How Else Would You End A Show:

WWE does know that Lynch is the one they’re supposed to be making sympathetic in this right? You remember all those other serious top starts who needed their old pal to fix things right? Instead of Lynch breaking someone’s arm to get back in the match, she’s sitting there beholden to McMahon, who is finally letting us have what we want. We better cheer for her now, at least before she randomly decides that what we want isn’t good for business and explains things to us like we’re three years old. Again.

Ring Of Honor Has Gotten Great

Now I’m not saying this is due to the departures of the cast of All Elite Wrestling, but the timing is pretty accurate. Lately, Ring of Honor has gone with a fresh take on things (well, fresh for wrestling that is) with the focus being on a group of (mostly) outsiders called Lifeblood who want to bring Ring of Honor back to the way things used to be: wrestling based and focused on respect.

These People Are Making It Better:

I know that sounds like something that has been done to death and really, that’s because it’s mostly true. However, it’s nice to have something other than “the Bullet Club is awesome and let’s have them win all the time”. It works for a certain audience, but this feels like the first real breath of fresh air that the company has had in a very long time and it’s working.

Ronda Rousey Is Mean

It makes sense to close this out with the story that closed out this week’s Monday Night Raw. After over a year in the company, Rousey has become a heel for the first time and while it’s a bit too early to know for sure, this could be awesome. Rousey is at her best when she comes off as a killing machine and that’s what she’s going to be doing now. If nothing else, it means a lack of her smiling all the way to the ring.

It Gives New Meaning To The Word Snap:

This might not be something that works long term for her, but for the short term, at least until WrestleMania, having Rousey be the killing machine that she can be is a great thing. That way, when Lynch beats her for the title, she’s going to look like an even more dominant conqueror than before. It’s a good idea, at least in theory, but just about anything WWE does has that caveat these days.

I know it’s WrestleMania season and things are starting to get bigger and bigger, but there are a lot of stories going on both in and out of WWE. It’s the time of year where everyone is trying harder because the wrestling fans’ eyes are even more tuned in than usual. That makes the shows a lot easier to watch and if you pay enough attention, you might have a lot of fun.

Thomas Hall has been a wrestling fan for over thirty years and has seen over 50,000 wrestling matches. He has also been a wrestling reviewer since 2009 with over 5,000 full shows covered. You can find his work at, or check out his Amazon author page with 28 wrestling books. His latest book is the the Complete 2000 Monday Nitro and Thunder Reviews Part 1.

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