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Points by Ben Simmons during Game 3 victory over Nets

Heel Turns: Smackdown no match for election

Posted by Achilles Heel On November 5

Achilles HeelHell in a Cell went up against the Eagles and Cowboys on Monday Night Football. RAW regularly goes up against Monday Night Football. The RAW after WrestleMania usually is in direct competition against the championship game of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

But WWE may face its toughest ratings battle Tuesday when Smackdown emanates from Glasgow, Scotland. Tape-delayed shows, which is the case when RAW and Smackdown are in Europe, usually are hurt in the ratings due to a segment of the audience learning the results in advance. But that problem will be compounded Tuesday by the grudge match of the year.

With apologies to Brock Lesnar vs. Goldberg, the biggest grudge match this month – and likely of the entire year – is Donald Trump vs. Hillary Clinton. That grudge match will be settled Tuesday night, and the poll results should start coming in just as Smackdown begins.

The election is a winner-take-all, loser-leave-town type of battle. Supporters on both sides have depicted this election as good vs. evil. There is even the chance of “outside interference” from Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson, Green Party candidate Jill Stein or independent conservative candidate Evan McMullin affecting the outcome.

Perhaps the scariest scenario is a disputed finish. There could be a “Dusty” finish, where one candidate is declared the winner and new champion (president) before a referee reverses the decision.

A disputed finish in the presidential election would be a nightmare. Anyone remember the 2000 election?

But it’s difficult to imagine Smackdown presenting anything as interesting as the presidential election Tuesday night.

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UNDERTAKER RETURNS: Smackdown the following week will take place in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. The Undertaker, making his first appearance in Wilkes-Barre in more than a decade, will be appearing on the show.

The Nov. 15 Smackdown is the final televised WWE show before Survivor Series. Will Undertaker’s appearance have a connection to Survivor Series, the show at which he made his WWE debut? Will he be named a member of one of the teams in the Survivor Series elimination matches? Will he insert himself into the Brock Lesnar-Goldberg storyline? We’ll have to wait and see.

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CHIKARA DOUBLEHEADER: Don’t forget that CHIKARA will make its final appearances in Philadelphia on Saturday (Nov. 5) with a day-night doubleheader at The Wrestle Factory, which located at 4711 Wingate Street.

The main attraction during “Counting Backwards” in the afternoon (2 p.m.) should be independent sensation Zack Sabre Jr. taking on Juan Francisco de Coronado. Other matches include Drew Gulak battling Lucas Calhoun, and the team of Dasher Hatfield and Heidi Lovelace squaring off with Icarus and Mark Angelosetti, Hatfield’s former tag team partner.

In the evening (7 p.m.) at “Like Phantoms, Forever,” Hallowicked defends the Grand Championship against Ophidian. Former grand champion Princess Kimberlee battles Max Smashmaster, and there are there are several matches involving the army of “Ants,” including Bullet Ant against Rock Lobster (a B-52s fan?).

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TNA BATTLES: With Anthem Sports & Entertainment taking over TNA – although the company maintains the sale is not completed – Billy Corgan has apparently been thwarted in trying to gain control of the company. In a related note, David Lagana, TNA’s head writer, announced that he has left the company. Lagana has written for TNA and Ring of Honor.

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GOING THROUGH HELL: Hell in a Cell wasn’t a bad show, but, as the Greek God of Wrestling told you last week, three of the same type of matches on one show is at least one too many. By the time Charlotte and Sasha Banks clashed in Hell in a Cell, the crowd has already witnessed two hell in a cell matches. The uniqueness of the match had worn off. It’s also difficult to do the same style match without repeating some of the spots.

As Achilles Heel suspected would be the case, the WWE Universal Championship match between Kevin Owens and Seth Rollins – with a healthy dose of Chris Jericho – was the best match on the show.

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REVERSING FIELD: Given what I just wrote about Hell in a Cell, it might seem contradictory to hear that the Greek God of Wrestling is looking forward to Survivor Series, which will feature at least three traditional Survivor Series elimination matches.

There is enough intrigue in each of the elimination matches to make each match unique. Although each RAW vs. Smackdown elimination match will feature some question of dissension on each team, there are enough different personalities involved to make the matches different.

In the men’s match, there is a question of whether Randy Orton is affiliated with the Wyatt Family. Orton, Bray Wyatt and Baron Corbin join rivals Dean Ambrose and WWE World champion A.J. Styles on the Smackdown team. The RAW team consists of WWE Universal champion Kevin Owens, his pal Chris Jericho, United States champion Roman Reigns, Braun Strowman and a partner to be determined. The identity of the fifth member of the RAW team, which likely will be Seth Rollins, creates intrigue. Having three former members of the Shield involved, as well as having former Wyatt Family member Strowman opposing Wyatt, is another interesting element.

The Smackdown women’s team consists of Smackdown Women’s champion Becky Lynch, Nikki Bella, Alexa Bliss, Carmella and Naomi. The RAW team includes RAW Women’s champion Charlotte, Becky Lynch and Nia Jax. Sasha Banks should fill one of the two remaining berths. The tag team elimination match still has half the roster spots to fill.

The main event, of course, is Brock Lesnar vs. Goldberg, who speared Paul Heyman during RAW.

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OPEN CHALLENGE: Dolph Ziggler’s open challenge to anyone from RAW to face him at Survivor Series for the Intercontinental Championship is the type of match Achilles Heel predicted could occur at major events when WWE did the brand split.

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EUROPEAN TOURS: WWE is in the midst of a two-week European tour that takes it all over the United Kingdom, as well as to Austria, Germany, France and Spain. Less than one week after WWE departs, Ring of Honor will arrive for a three-day tour.

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CLASSIC RESULTS: Sometimes the best-laid plans are ruined. We’ll never know what was planned for NXT’s Dusty Rhodes Classic, but there have been some mid-tournament alterations.

An injury to Hideo Itami prevented the Japanese dream team of Itami and Kota Ibushi from seeing action. T.J. Perkins replaced Itami. After a first-round victory, however, Perkins and Ibushi were eliminated by SAnitY (Alexander Wolfe, Sawyer Fulton) in the quarterfinals.

An injury to Austin Aries, who required surgery to repair a fractured orbital bone at the hands – or foot – of NXT champion Shinsuke Nakamura, led to a 1-on-1 match between TM-61’s Shane Thorne and Roderick Strong, with Thorne prevailing. Aries’ surgery eliminated the possibility of his team advancing. In more of a storyline event, NXT Tag Team champions Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson forfeited to Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa, with Dawson claiming he had a knee injury. In the other quarterfinal, the Authors of Pain defeated No Way Jose and Rich Swann.

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BALOR IN JERSEY: Finn Balor, WWE’s first Universal champion, will be at the Adventureland Store in Voorhees on Sunday from 1-3 p.m. Tickets are required for autograph and photo opportunities.

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GOAL-ORIENTED: Former Germany goalkeeper Tim Wiese made his WWE debut this week in Munich, Germany, teaming with Sheamus and Cesaro in a victoriousious effort against The Shining Stars and Bo Dallas.

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