Consecutive penalties killed off by Flyers

The Cardinals connected on long touchdown passes to Larry Fitzgerald (pictured) and John Brown during the second half, with a 75-yard pass to Brown providing the winning score, during a 24-20 victory over the visiting Eagles.

Nick Foles keeps saying he’s going to clean up his mistakes. But his actions haven’t backed up his words. As Eric Fisher “discovers,” this isn’t a new problem for Foles.

In his first news conference as Nittany Lions head coach, James Franklin made it clear that he’s committed to Penn State for the long haul. Following Bill O’Brien’s short reign, Franklin is exactly what Penn State needs.

Archive for the ‘Wrestling’ Category

Heel Turns: Lesnar, Undertaker go to Hell

Posted by Achilles Heel On October - 24 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Achilles HeelYes, this is the second Heel Turns in just a few days. That’s because Eric Fisher took so long to post my last edition of Heel Turns.

On the positive side, you’re lucky enough to receive a double dose of the Greek God of Wrestling this week. Who could complain about that?

Achilles Heel is back on short notice to preview Hell in a Cell, which takes place Sunday (8 p.m.) at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Regular readers of Heel Turns know that I don’t like themed pay-per-views in which the stipulation match doesn’t make sense. But both Brock Lesnar vs. Undertaker and Roman Reigns vs. Bray Wyatt are feuds worthy of being contested inside Hell in a Cell.

The Lesnar-Undertaker feud has been well-documented. Lesnar ended Undertaker’s 21-match WrestleMania winning streak at WrestleMania XXX. Undertaker, angry over Lesnar and advocate Paul Heyman’s ongoing boasting about ending his streak, challenged Lesnar to a match at SummerSlam.

Undertaker won the SummerSlam match, but the ending was engulfed in controversy. Undertaker used a low blow to win the match. Even more contentious, however, was that Undertaker tapped out, undetected by the referee but seen by the timekeeper, who prematurely rang the bell. While the cause for the ringing of the bell was being sorted out, Undertaker delivered the low blow and, after the match restarted, applied his Hell’s gate submission move, causing a defiant Lesnar to pass out.

Everyone assumed that Lesnar vs. Undertaker III would headline WrestleMania 32 in Texas, but the match will take place Sunday inside Hell in a Cell. That has set off speculation about the main event for WrestleMania 32 (Lesnar vs. Steve Austin?; a triple threat match involving Austin, Lesnar and Undertaker; Undertaker vs. John Cena?). Whether this is the end of the Undertaker-Lesnar saga or if there is one more chapter, it makes sense for Lesnar to win Sunday – unless someone such as Austin costs Lesnar the victory.

Reigns and Wyatt have been feuding since Wyatt cost Reigns the Money in the Bank ladder match. With Reigns still apparently slated for the big push, he should win Sunday. This feud, however, might carry over to Survivor Series on Nov. 22.

There are also five championship matches at Hell in a Cell. Seth Rollins defends the WWE World Heavyweight Championship against Kane – or Demon Kane, as he’s called to distinguish himself from Corporate Kane. It’s difficult to imagine Rollins losing the championship to Kane, but Corporate Kane loses his job as WWE director of operations if Demon Kane can’t defeat Rollins.

John Cena is slated to defend the United States Championship in a U.S. Open challenge. Mystery surrounds the identity of Cena’s opponent. Big Show isn’t on the card, but that wouldn’t seem to make sense. The same could be said of Chris Jericho. The Greek God of Wrestling could see someone from the preshow six-man tag team match, probably Sheamus or Dolph Ziggler getting the title match. Rusev, who lost the title to Cena, is another possibility.

A wild card – if he’s cleared by doctors – would be Daniel Bryan. Another wild card would be newcomer Tyler Breeze, although it would be more likely that he would cost Ziggler the championship. A final unlikely darkhorse could be Dean Ambrose (whose match was canceled). The challenger should win the title. If Cena wins, expect WWE to create a U.S. Championship tournament.

Kevin Owens should successfully defend his title against Ryback, the former champion. A title change is more likely in the Divas Championship and Tag Team Championship matches. Charlotte defends the Divas Championship against Nikki Bella, the former champion. Paige will likely become involved in this match, which could allow Nikki to regain the title. The New Day defends the tag team titles against the Dudley Boyz, which could result in a title change.

The preshow features a six-man tag team match pitting Dolph Ziggler, Cesaro and Neville and against Sheamus, King Barrett and Rusev.

Originally, Ambrose and Randy Orton were scheduled to face the Wyatt Family’s Luke Harper and Braun Strowman, but Orton dislocated his shoulder. WWE could have done a mystery partner angle, but, with Cena’s U.S. Open challenge already using that plot line, the tag team match was scrapped.

Even without that tag team match, Hell in a Cell appears to be a good card with the potential for title changes and surprises.

Eagles fans would be wise to switch over to Hell in a Cell once the Birds fall hopelessly behind or Sam Bradford throws his third interception, whichever comes first.


STRONG PERFORMANCE: The main event for Ring of Honor’s Glory By Honor XIV on Saturday (tonight) in Dayton, Ohio, received a bit of a shakeup. The main event is Champions vs. All-Stars, but the All-Stars now have a champion. Roderick Strong defeated Jay Lethal for the Ring of Honor Television Championship on Friday in Kalamazoo, Mich.

Strong and Lethal, who remains the Ring of Honor World champion, have had a series of tremendous matches during the past few months, including a 60-minute draw. Friday’s defeat is Lethal’s first in singles competition in nearly a year.

Lethal teams up with tag team champions Michael Bennett and Matt Taven to form the Champions squad. Strong teams up with A.J. Styles and ACH to form the Ring of Honor All-Stars.

Other matches include Mark and Jay Briscoe battling War Machine (Ray Rowe and Hanson), Donovan Dijak vs. Michael Elgin, Adam Cole vs. Will Ferrara, and a four-corner survival match between Adam Page, Cedric Alexander, Dalton Castle and Cliff Compton.


COOL BREEZE: Tyler Breeze made an excellent debut on Smackdown. He was brought in during an episode of Miz TV as the new boyfriend of Summer Rae. After a terrific start to his interview, Breeze beat down Dolph Ziggler, allegedly for his mistreatment of Summer Rae.

The former NXT star then took a selfie of himself and Summer. In a cool touch that Achilles Heel hopes will continue, Breeze’s selfie immediately shows up on the Titantron.


INDIAN INVASION: TNA has announced a tour of India on Dec. 2-4, culminating in One Night Only. This tour apparently will coincide with recruitment. WWE then announced that WWE Network will be available in India, second only to China in population, on Nov. 2.


COMINGS AND GOINGS: As if TNA’s World Title Series wasn’t confusing enough, there are participants who aren’t even in TNA any longer. Because TNA shoots its television programs so far in advance, James Storm appeared on both Impact Wrestling and NXT on Wednesday. Kenny King, who has returned to Ring of Honor, is also in the World Title Series.


STORM BREWING: As mentioned in the previous item, James Storm made his NXT debut on Wednesday, defeating Danny Burch. NXT continues to bring in veterans with name recognition from the independent circuit and smaller promotions.


Heel Turns: Opportunity knocks in WWE

Posted by Achilles Heel On October - 22 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Achilles HeelJohn Cena is scheduled to take a break after Hell in a Cell this Sunday. Randy Orton is sidelined by a dislocated shoulder.

Who is going to step up?

There’s no question that WWE is a little light on star power at the top. Undertaker and Lesnar, the headliners for Hell in a Cell, are featured attractions. Neither works a full schedule.

Seth Rollins, the WWE World Heavyweight champion is the other bona fide star. That leaves room for wrestlers such as Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose to move one rung up to the top of the ladder. WWE would love for Reigns to take that step and become the next big babyface star, but the fans have been reluctant to join that bandwagon.

On the heel side, Kevin Owens has been tremendous. He was rewarded with the Intercontinental Championship. So far, so very, very good.

Sheamus’ push after winning the Money in the Bank ladder match has stalled. This is an opportunity for him to revive his push, but, with Rollins and Owens holding championships – not to mention The New Day as tag team champions – the absence of Cena and Orton provides more of an opportunity for babyfaces to elevate their game.

The opportunity is there for Dolph Ziggler to rise back to the top. Cesaro should get another shot at the spotlight. Neville could also raise his profile. This also could be an opportunity for a face turn by someone like Rusev or Luke Harper, who wasn’t with the Wyatt’s during Monday’s main event against the former members of The Shield. Harper, who definitely knows how to work a match, might be able to pull off a Bruiser Brody-like brawler who could generate cheers.

Someone nearly forgotten, such as Jack Swagger, or a more familiar name, such as Bad News Barrett, could also receive another opportunity to make some noise.

Other beneficiaries of the absence of Cena and Orton could be the Divas. With the most talented roster in a long time, the Divas could find themselves in higher profile spots on the cards. If they can make the most of their opportunity, the Divas might never give up an elevated spot on the card.

The opportunity is there. Who will seize the opportunity?


TAMING OF THE BEAST: Achilles Heel has enjoyed Steve Austin’s interview shows on WWE Network, but he has mixed feelings about Brock Lesnar’s appearance on Monday. The interview was fine. And, in today’s world, the Greek God of Wrestling doesn’t mind having the curtain pulled back a little bit so fans can see the other side of the business.

Still, to see Lesnar all chummy with Austin took away a little of his mystique. I wouldn’t want to see Undertaker in a similar format until he’s retired. Lesnar is supposed to be The Beast. He’s supposed to be a violent man on the verge of being out of control. To have him joking with Austin in a relaxed atmosphere takes away from his ring persona.


WRESTLEMANIA PREVIEW? Those hoping for fireworks between Brock Lesnar and Steve Austin during the interview mentioned in the preceding item must have been disappointed. But they shouldn’t give up on a future Austin-Lesnar match. If Lesnar attacks Austin at some point, Monday’s show – with Austin inviting Lesnar to go hunting with him – will be used to establish that the pair had a friendly relationship.

The Greek God of Wrestling will reiterate that he does not want to see Austin return to the ring against Lesnar. With a history that includes a serious neck injury, the last thing Austin needs to do is to travel to Suplex City.


HELL OF A CARD: Hell in a Cell on Sunday will feature two Hell in a Cell matches (Brock Lesnar vs. Undertaker and Roman Reigns vs. Bray Wyatt) and five title matches. Look for a full preview later this week.


REUNION (SORT OF): Even though Seth Rollins didn’t really function as a willing teammate with Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose, it was cool to see The Shield reunited for the main event six-man tag team match on RAW.


LAND OF CONFUSION: TNA’s World Title Series just doesn’t make sense to the Greek God of Wrestling. It’s confusing, but try to follow along.

There are eight groups. The champions group consists of Lashley, Austin Aries, Ethan Carter III and Mr. Anderson. That’s clearly the best group.

Are we supposed to believe some of those guys are going to be eliminated while someone from the Wild Card group (Kenny King, Crazzy Steve, Aiden O’Shea and Mahabali Shera) will be in the final tournament? The same goes for Group Future 4. Eli Drake, Crimson, Jessie Godderz or Micah is going to advance while two or three from the group that includes Lashley, Aries, Carter and Anderson are not. That’s absurd.


CHAMPIONSHIP WEEK: A number of Global Force Wrestling titles will be decided Friday in Las Vegas. In the NEX*GEN finals, P.J. Black, Jigsaw, Virgil Flynn and TJP will compete for the title. In the women’s final, Christina Von Eerie battles Amber Gallows. They also will crown a GFW Global champion.


GLORY BY HONOR: Ring of Honor presents Glory By Honor XIV on Saturday in Dayton, Ohio. The main event is Champions vs. All-Stars, with Ring of Honor World and television champion Jay Lethal teaming with tag team champions Michael Bennett and Matt Taven to battle the Ring of Honor All-Stars (A.J. Styles, Roderick Strong and ACH).

Other matches include the Briscoes takes on War Machine, Donovan Dijak vs. Michael Elgin, Adam Cole vs. Will Ferrara, and a four-corner survival match between Adam Page, Cedric Alexander, Dalton Castle and Cliff Compton.


MIDWEST MATCHES: CHIKARA makes a Midwest swing later this week, with shows in Minneapolis (Thursday), Chicago (Friday), Jeffersonville, Ind. (Saturday) and Columbus (Sunday).  Those are the last shows of the year outside of Pennsylvania. CHIKARA will be in Reading on Nov. 7 and Philadelphia on Nov. 8 and Dec. 5.


HARDCORE NEWS: Early November will be a busy time in Philadelphia. In addition to the CHIKARA show, Tommy Dreamer’s House of Hardcore 10 will be Nov. 13 at 2300 Arena. If you want to check out the matches, read the previous edition of Heel Turns. Achilles Heel isn’t going to feed you the same information every week.


EVOLVING RELATIONSHIP: There appears to be a relationship between WWE and EVOLVE. Sami Zayn made a non-wrestling appearance at an EVOLVE show in New York, although his appearance couldn’t be part of the broadcast.


NO EXPLANATION: Erick Rowan returned to the Wyatt Family this past Monday at RAW – with no explanation. Achilles Heel seems to recall that Rowan was teaming with Luke Harper before getting injured. If Harper was in Monday’s six-man tag team match, maybe his appearance would have made sense. But some explanation was needed for why he all of a sudden was back with Bray Wyatt.


WWE COMING BACK: WWE, which will spend a great deal of time in Europe in November – and the Greek God of Wrestling will be there for many of the events – will return to Hershey on Dec. 1 for a Smackdown taping. If you miss that show, RAW will be at Wells Fargo Center on Dec. 14.




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