This Week in Wrestling 2017 week 31

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Craig Wilson and Brian Damage

It’s Saturday so time for the latest instalment of ’This Week in Wrestling’. Today, in part 31, Craig talks about Enzo Amore while Brian asks Whatever Happened to Aksana and shares all the best viral content he’s stumbled upon this week. 


What to do with Enzo Amore
Craig

With the WWE all but confirming, via the 31 July edition of Bring it to the Table on the WWE Network that Enzo Amore was indeed kicked off the bus by Roman Reigns on the recent European tour, the focus returns once again to what the future holds for him.

As the Wrestling Observer newsletter confirms:

The situation with Amore was discussed on the 7/31 episode of “Bring it to the Table,” where our report from several weeks ago regarding his being kicked off the bus by Reigns due to heat with the locker room was acknowledged ….. The incident in question we were told that broke the camel’s back and this happened some time back, was him talking very loudly on his phone to someone and saying things that those who couldn’t help but hear him thought were negative about the business while bragging about how much money he was making from the business to that person.

First things first, the way he was reported as acting is pretty stupid but, as the above article states, was merely the straw that broke the camel’s back and had been coming.

As a young talent fresh on the roster, this is a very damaging way to behave and likely to only lead to bother for Enzo. It’s also allowed the discussion over his future to raise its head again.

Now that his feud with Big Cass seems done and dusted and his former partner has gone on to bigger and better things, as we all knew he would, where does that leave the diminutive and charismatic Amore.

Several options are being discussed: returning him to NXT, which would give him a more fuller reign to get his act back together and develop his character further as a solo star. Another is that due to his popularity with the fans, have him move to 205 Live – a show that could do with the injection of over superstars to draw in ratings – or leave him on Raw.

In reverse order, leaving him on Raw would be damaging. Heat backstage and regarded poorly, his chance of a push or even success is limited and it wouldn’t take long to largely see him occupy a jobber role to other superstars on the roster. Soon enough, his appeal would wane with the fans and he’d find himself being discussed as a ‘possible one to go’ when the time comes for cutbacks on the roster.

The 205 Live suggestion is interesting as it certainly needs someone that the fans are firmly behind to boost that show. However, I have doubts that a superstar like Enzo would be enough to make fans care, and stay back, to watch the show being recorded after Smackdown. The show’s biggest issue is when it’s recorded and the injection of Enzo isn’t going to change that at all or really offset it by much.

NXT is by the far the best option for him. He can develop his character, provide a boost to the NXT brand and perhaps, in the way that others have before him, used the demotion back down to really show the company they deserve to be on the main roster. It can also allow him to hone his in-ring skills.

He’ll be hoping the heat backstage cools down and he can get on with doing what he does best.



Whatever Happened to WWE’s Aksana?
Brian

Zivile Raudoniene was a Lithuanian born bodybuilder and fitness model who started out her fitness career at 16 years old. After competing at Arnold Schwartzenegger’s bodybuilding competition, she was discovered by the WWE and signed to a developmental contract in 2009. She was trained in Florida by Steve Keirn and started wrestling for his Florida Championship Wrestling Promotion (FCW)

About a year later, under the name Aksana, she competed on the WWE’s reality competition show known as NXT. She would work a program with Goldust and become his valet/girlfriend. She eventually made her way up to the main roster and had a storyline with Teddy Long. WWE producer Kevin Dunne said that Aksana was his all time favorite diva and she would go on to introduce Cesaro as her boyfriend and become his valet.

She formed a team with Alicia Fox and were known as “Foxana.” Aksana was also the diva who legitimately injured Naomi by accidentally stiffing her with a knee to her face. By 2014, several WWE talents were released including Aksana. So that begs the question, Whatever happened to Aksana?

After her release from the WWE, she went to go work for a chain of health clubs in Florida called YouFit. She worked there as a director of trainers for about two years. She has since started her own business as a personal trainer and currently resides in Tampa, Florida.


This Week’s Live WWE ratings
Craig

NXT

1-star – 44.44%
5-star – 22.22%
3-star – 22.22%
4-star – 11.11%
2-star – 0

205 Live

3-star – 44.44%
2-star – 33.33%
5-star – 11.11%
1-star – 11.11%
4-star – 0

Smacdkwon

4-star – 66.67%
3-star – 33.33%
5-star – 0
2-star – 0
1-star – 0

Raw

2-star – 35%
3-star – 30%
4-star – 15%
5-star – 10%
1-star – 10%


Photo Gallery
Brian

I never realized that Mauro Ranallo was with NXT that long and use to look a lot like the old WWE play by play announcer Rich Brennan!

If Ron Simmons made a music album…

Cool street art of ‘Nature Boy’ Ric Flair in Montreal.

Brian Pillman’s son looking more and more like his old man…

20 years later: Hart and Soul to Hart and Glow

Move over Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler now has his own BBQ sauce!

LOL

Cody Rhodes still humble enough to help clean up after a match.

Shinsuke Nakamura giving Triple H a little wink that he’s got this…


Video Gallery
Brian

Ric Flair Lottery?!? Woooooooooo!!!


Last Week on the Blog

In last week’s Sunday Sermon we asked if JinderMania is running out of steam; on Monday we had part 30 of ‘Meanwhile, in WCW‘; on Tuesday we had part 125 of our ‘Wrestling with Sin‘ series; Wednesday’s we had part 18 of ‘Styles Clash: Clash of the Champions Revisited‘ looking at Clash of the Champion 17, Thursday featured a piece looking at the feud between Larry Zybsko and Bruno Sammartino and we rounded off the week asking Whatever Happened to Rob Bartlett.

Next Week on the Blog

Tomorrow’s Sunday Sermon looks back at SummerSlam 1997, the latest ‘history of the Intercontinental title‘ and more.


All previous ‘This Week in Wrestling’ pieces can be read here.

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