Technically, it was Goldust and Cody Rhodes who defeated The Shield’s Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns on Oct. 14, 2013, while last Sunday at Night of Champions it was Goldust and Stardust who defeated Jimmy and Jey Uso to capture the titles – or the cosmic key, if you prefer. But, as far as Achilles Heel is concerned, Cody Rhodes and Stardust are not to be counted as two different people.
The Usos had a solid eight-month run as champions after defeating the New Age Outlaws (Billy Gunn and The Road Dog, Jesse James) in March. The Outlaws had captured the belts from the Rhodes brothers in January. The highlight of the Usos’ championship reign was fending off the challenge of the Wyatt Family’s Luke Harper and Erick Rowan in a series of excellent matches.
But that’s enough about past champions. Let’s examine the current champs.
Goldust and Stardust form a bizarre team. That might be the understatement of the year. Their behavior and interviews are unusual, to say the least. For the first time in his career, Goldust seems like the “normal” member of his team.
Goldust, a.k.a. Dustin Rhodes, deserves a lot of credit. He has lost weight and seems to be as good as he’s ever been in the ring. Goldust made a successful return in 2013, having a tremendous match with Randy Orton in his first match back with WWE.
Cody is also instrumental in the team’s success. He has a history as a successful tag team wrestler. Cody won the World Tag Team Championship with Bob “Hardcore” Holly and twice with Ted DiBiase (the son, not the “Million Dollar Man”). He won the WWE tag team titles with Drew McIntyre before teaming up with his older brother last year.
Cody has taken the Stardust gimmick and run with it. He is playing off his brother’s Goldust persona, but he’s making it his own. Stardust is not a carbon copy of Goldust. He has his own quirks and personality traits.
The Greek god of wrestling believes the Dust brothers are in for a long and very interesting title reign.
NIGHT TO REMEMBER: The tag teams championship wasn’t the only title to change hands last Sunday at Night of Champions. The Miz defeated Dolph Ziggler to win the Intercontinental Championship, and A.J. Lee won a triple threat match with Paige and Nikki Bella to wrest the Divas Championship back from Paige.
The two best matches, in my humble opinion, didn’t result in title changes. Sheamus retained the United States Championship against Cesaro, and Randy Orton defeated Chris Jericho.
In the words of Jim Ross, the match between Sheamus and Cesaro was a slobberknocker. These two guys beat the crap out of each other. It wasn’t an all-out brawl. The damage was done with maneuvers as well as with clotheslines, uppercuts and fists.
Orton and Jericho put together a wonderful match. The pacing was perfect. Orton won when he caught Jericho with an RKO as he leaped from the top rope. I hope the younger wrestlers were paying attention as two old pros demonstrated how to tell a story in the ring.
Brock Lesnar retained the WWE World Heavyweight Championship when Seth Rollins interfered as John Cena applied the STF. Rollins was about to cash in his Money in the Bank opportunity on an injured Lesnar, but Cena interfered. Stay tuned for further developments.
REIGNS HAS SURGERY: Seth Rollins’ match with Roman Reigns did not take place at Night of Champions because Reigns had surgery to repair a hernia. Reigns had been elevated to the upper part of the card. He is expected to be out of action several months.
DEVASTATING NEWS: Devastation Corporation (Blaster McMassive, Flex Rumblecrunch and Max Smashmaster) won CHIKARA’s King of Trios last weekend during a three-day event in Easton. After defeating Team 3Peck0 (Archibald Peck, Scott Parker and Shane Matthews) in the semifinals, Devastation Corporation topped The Golden Trio (Icarus, Dasher Hatfield and “Mr. Touchdown” Mark Angelosetti) in the final.
BOUND FOR DISASTER? One of the Greek god of wrestling’s biggest complaints is the failure of promotions to announce matches in time to properly promote pay-per-view events. That is one reason – and far from the only reason – he is thoroughly annoyed with TNA.
Bound for Glory is supposed to be TNA’s biggest event of the year. This year’s show will take place at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo on Sun., Oct. 12. And not one match has been announced for Bound for Glory. Not one.
One disadvantage of taping shows so far in advance is that last Wednesday’s Impact Wrestling did nothing to promote Bound for Glory. Nothing at all.
Why should fans purchase tickets or pay-per-views when the promotion can’t be bothered to set up the matches in time to properly promote them?
TNA, of course, will be puzzled when its buy rate for Bound for Glory is awful.
DREAMER’S GAIN: With TNA not having any United States dates on its schedule, independent promotions such as Tommy Dreamer’s House of Hardcore are benefiting from talent being available. TNA’s Austin Aries, Matt and Jeff Hardy and The Wolves (Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards) are confirmed for Nov. 15 as Tommy Dreamer’s House of Hardcore comes to the 2300 Arena, better known as the ECW Arena. Also confirmed for the card are the Young Bucks (Matt and Nick Johnson), Harry Smith and, of course, Dreamer.
NETWORK NUGGET: One of the terrific offerings from WWE Network this past week was a special on ECW’s influence on the competition between WWE and WCW. There are some fascinating insights during this show, many of them from Paul Heyman. Go out of your way to check out this show.
COMPLAINT DEPARTMENT: While I’m complaining, let’s take a shot at WWE for the manner in which The Miz defeated Dolph Ziggler for the Intercontinental Championship at Night of Champions. No, Achilles Heel isn’t referring to Miz pulling Ziggler’s trunks to get the pinfall.
My problem with the title change was that the match was a backdrop for the announcement that Georgia Line will perform at Tribute for the Troops in December. Two members of the band were doing commentary throughout the match and even pushed Damien Sandow. More attention was paid to Georgia Line performing at Tribute for the Troops than was given to the Intercontinental Championship changing hands.
Fortunately for WWE, it got a second bite of the apple the next night on RAW. This time the match, with Ziggler regaining the gold, was the center of attention.
WWE COMES TO TOWN: WWE will be in Trenton next Saturday (Oct. 4) for a house show at Sun National Bank Center. The following night (5 p.m.), WWE will make its debut at PPL Arena in Allentown. On Tues., Oct. 7, WWE comes to Wells Fargo Center for Smackdown and Main Event.