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21.11.2018 06:14
ming Gable, with few targeted shots to the knee incapacitating him to set up an injury angle.American Alpha was sent to the side Antworten

The WWEs brand separation in July has led to star turns few could have seen coming.?On SmackDown Live,?A.J. Styles?continued his meteoric rise to the top and now finds himself one match away from holding the most venerable title in professional wrestling.?Heath Slater, of all people, has received a huge wave of support?from fans in his pursuit of a contract after going undrafted.Even?The Miz?has elevated himself to a level he hasnt approached since main-eventing WrestleMania with?John Cena?in 2011 as WWE champion -- and it was?all?through a sheer force of will and a single impassioned promo that nobody saw coming.So whats the common denominator? Whats the element allowing these performers to express themselves in a refreshingly unscripted manner?Among the many hours of WWE programming available each week on multiple platforms, its a 30-minute (give or take) block of real estate called Talking Smack, which debuted six weeks ago and has realigned the expectations of what the WWE can do in the modern era. This postgame show, which airs on the WWE Network immediately following SmackDown Live, has become the highlight of Tuesday nights.Gone are the overly scripted promos that have dominated WWE television, where it became?clear that talent was either reading from a teleprompter or trying to recite pre-written dialogue from memory. In its place, Talking Smack has taken the best element that live wrestling shows have to offer -- unpredictability and spontaneity -- while feeding just enough of the current SmackDown storylines into the programming.There was no Miz-level promo?on this weeks Talking Smack,?but there was plenty to like after a go-home episode of SmackDown that contained very little wrestling heading into Sundays Backlash card, the first SmackDown-exclusive pay-per-view since the brand split.A good example would be?Apollo Crews, who?kept the crowd interested in his undeniable in-ring ability during a good showing against The Miz on SmackDown, despite the fact that?very little has been done with his character to establish him as anything other than a guy who smiles a lot. That changed in a matter of minutes on Talking Smack.During a conversation between?Daniel Bryan?and?Dolph Ziggler, Crews was given more character depth than he has shown?in several months combined on WWE TV. Bryan introduced the idea that Crews is a first-generation American whose parents came to the United States to give their son a chance at a better life. Thats a real statement.Ziggler took a step further, insinuating that theres a lot more than meets the eye behind Crews smile;?a force within him thats ready and yearning to rip someones face off. Thats the beauty of a show like Talking Smack, where?the lines between fiction and reality can be blurred, allowing WWEs creative team to discover valuable elements to utilize in future shows.?Theres always a fear, of course, that things could get a little too real and cross a line in the kind of environment which Talking Smack fosters. The Mizs diatribe against Bryan certainly stretched those boundaries to their breaking point, and the initial edict that Miz and Bryan stop interacting on camera, shared by Bryan during his appearance on SportsCenter last week, certainly shows that some are uneasy about the nature of what happens on the show.As long as Talking Smack continues to produce a tangible benefit to a show like SmackDown Live, one that has lagged at times since the brand split, things like awkward pauses, occasional weirdness and odd discussions about Jesus zippers can easily be forgiven. Talking Smack has provided more reasons than might otherwise have been there to enjoy Backlash on Sunday, and as SmackDown continues to find its identity, its vital that young talent and veterans trying to re-establish themselves have a platform to do so.By proving to be a valuable source of information and providing a home for spontaneous creativity, Talking Smack could be the most important asset the SmackDown brand has to offer.There were only three matches of any length on Tuesday, but one of the shortest confrontations also proved to be the most compelling development of the night. In a match that lasted well under a minute, SmackDown set?American Alpha?and?The Usos?up for an epic rivalry that should become a cornerstone of the show for weeks and months to come.There have been subtle signs of in-fighting between the two most prominent babyface tag teams on the SmackDown roster during recent 12-man tag team matches in which American Alpha and The Usos have teamed up. Tuesdays match between them in the SmackDown tag team title tournament, the one most figured would take place in the finals when the bracket was first announced, instead got moved to the semifinals after a quiet reshuffling of the bracket, making clear that something was up.The Usos offered a handshake before the bell, in a believable start to a match between four good guys, but that all changed in a hurry as?Jimmy?and?Jey Uso?ambushed?Jason Jordan?and?Chad Gable?when their were backs turned. American Alpha quickly rallied and served up Karmic comeuppance to The Usos by connecting with their Grand Amplitude finishing move to record the win, seemingly advancing to the finals of the tournament on Sunday.?Moments later, the Usos briefly sat on the precipice of scaling back, begrudgingly congratulating Jordan and Gable and keeping them in a place of uncertainty, before they fully embraced the dark side by taking out Jordan and double-teaming Gable, with few targeted shots to the knee incapacitating him to set up an injury angle.American Alpha was sent to the sideline for the time being, allowing the two semifinals losers -- The Usos and?The Hype Bros?-- to face off at Backlash for a chance to challenge the other semifinal winners, Slater and?Rhyno,?for the?SmackDown titles later in the show.Its a brilliantly crafted story that sets up the two most interesting tag teams on the roster with the backstory and motivation for an epic feud down the line. It also sets The Usos up, provided they win the titles, to crush the storyline dreams of Slater and establish themselves as believable heel champions in a single night.There are only a few wrestlers who have never become pure bad guys in the WWE. While The Usos first came into the company as heels with?Tamina?in 2010 to feud with the Heart Dynasty, the run was brief as they quickly evolved into fan-friendly characters over the next six-plus years. Now, if done right, their transition from being the purest of good guys to the polar opposite can become a powerful tool.For a team like The Usos, who have seen fans turn on them at times during matches in which they have teamed up with their real-life cousin?Roman Reigns, it could be?just what the doctor ordered.Hits and missesThe opening segment of SmackDown, in which commissioner Daniel Bryan announced an elimination match stipulation to the Six-pack Challenge for the SmackDown womens championship at Backlash, was a strong nod to the emerging division. Sundays match is?a good concept, with everyone getting a chance to shine while still allowing the final two women to build toward a dramatic finish.Theres only so much that can be taken from the order of entrances on Tuesday, but even before this opening segment,?Becky Lynch?and?Nikki Bella?had to be considered the prohibitive favorites to become the?inaugural?champion. The fact that?Carmella,?Alexa Bliss,?Naomi?and even Bella didnt get entrance music also seemed telling. Of all of the talking done in the segment, Bliss did the most for herself by far; her style of speech and facial expressions are a big part of where her value lies as she continues to sharpen her in-ring skills, and with SmackDown needing as many good heels as it can get, its a good time to stand out in that regard.It was great to see The Miz and Bryan on screen together, with each making mention to their Talking Smack confrontation for the first time on SmackDown since it happened weeks earlier. This approach was far superior to the way it was handled one week ago. By incorporating reality or shoot events into storylines more organically, theres a potential to create memorable moments between these two without Bryan, who retired due to concussion issues, having to risk getting back in the ring. Through the right series of proxies, this could work well, and simply denying or shifting the natural tension between Miz and Bryan elsewhere feels too synthetic. Bryan threatening The Miz with taking away his most prized possession -- the Intercontinental championship -- was a nice touch, and potentially a sign of things to come.Speaking of The Miz, his SummerSlam rematch with Crews was a strong in-ring performance during a week that was lacking. Building toward a crossroads between the two would greatly benefit Crews, who needs whatever he can get in terms of popularity with the crowd. Considering the career renaissance The Miz is currently undergoing, some personality cant help but rub off in Crews direction, either, along with continued efforts to build his character on Talking Smack.While Ziggler was good on commentary during this match, there was simply too much JBL firing questions at him as the match went largely ignored. Props to Ziggler for attempting to put himself, Crews and The Miz over while trying to answer questions and turn talk back -- not an easy task. Despite not appearing in the ring on Tuesday, Zigglers post-match move of grabbing the Intercontinental championship and using it as a line in the sand was strong. It allowed The Miz to send his wife,?Maryse,?to retrieve it, helping advance the coward story arc.Styles taking things too seriously over the silly end to last weeks SmackDown episode could have gone sideways if he was made to look foolish again. Instead it provided him the opportunity to last out in frustration while taking everything said to him as a perceived slight throughout the show. Berating a crew member he blamed for giving Renee Young the footage of his unfortunate incident with the ring ropes was a nice touch.?Ambrose and Styles were good on the mic in getting their points across, with a particularly good line where he told Styles there are no trophies for the face who finishes in second place. But the show certainly could have benefited from a few more matches. Even in realizing the limits of a go-home show, having no in-ring action just days before Backlash from?Bray Wyatt,?Randy Orton, Styles, Ambrose?or?Ziggler -- the five biggest stars of the show by a fair margin while Cena is currently out of the picture -- was a disappointing decision. Even if WWE were simply looking to avoid injury, there are plenty of permutations it could have used. In the immortal words of former SmackDown general manager Teddy Long, there shouldve been some straight-up tag team matches on display.Wyatt and Orton each told a fictional tale to summarize their positions heading into Backlash, and if theres an exception for keeping one rivalry physically separated until Backlash as a means to build anticipation, that one makes the most sense. The continued question to ask here is how this currently intriguing showdown can have legs beyond Sunday. Wholesale Air Max .com) - Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray and Roger Federer were easy first-round winners Tuesday at the Australian Open. Wholesale Air Max Shoes . The head of USA Boxing came out swinging Tuesday with an open letter to Tyson -- a former Olympic hopeful himself -- that accuses the former heavyweight champion of trying to poach fighters who might be candidates for the U. . 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The Drone Racing League and ESPN have reached an agreement for the network to broadcast the first full season of the upstart organization, it was announced Wednesday.Coverage of DRL lets us merge storytelling, technology and competition into compelling weekly content that we believe will appeal to a growing audience, said Matthew Volk, ESPNs director of programming and acquisitions.ESPN will air 10 one-hour episodes beginning with a viewers guide to drone racing, airing Thursday night on ESPN2 and concluding with the DRL World Championship on Nov. 20.ddddddddddddThe elite pilots fly quadcopter drones at speeds of up to 120 miles per hour, with the goal of collecting the most points. Pilots and viewers have a first-person cockpit view thanks to cameras inside the drones.The DRL has received $12 million in investment from the likes of RSE Ventures, backed by Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, and Courtside Ventures, backed by Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert. 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