Thursday, September 13, 2018

IT'S TIME FOR "HELL IN A CELL" PREDICTIONS


Here are my match order and winner predictions for this Sunday’s HELL IN A CELL. In addition, I give my “Holy Shit” (💩) rating for each match. As always, it’s not the case that every match will end in a clear winner but we can dream can’t we.
There are four matches that have real potential which I guess is pretty good and I think there will be one title change and possibly two. So here we go with the matches listed in my projected order.

Randy Orton over Matt Hardy 💩💩1/2
New Day (c) over Rusev Day 💩💩
Rousey (c) over Bliss 💩1/2
Ziggler/McIntyre (c) over Seth and Dean 💩💩💩💩
Somoa Joe over AJ (c) 💩💩💩💩1/2
Miz/Maryse over Daniel Bryan/Brie Bella 💩💩
Charlotte Flair (c) over Becky 💩💩💩💩1/2
Reigns (c) over Strowman💩💩💩1/2

OVERALL HOLY SHIT RATING: 💩💩💩


Feel free to tell me I am clueless at masked.scheduler@gmail.com or on the Twitter @maskedscheduler

Saturday, August 25, 2018

THE DAY I MET JOHN McCAIN ON THE 24 SET


Sometime in either late 2005 or early 2006, I really don’t remember, I got a call from Joel Surnow who was the co-creator and executive producer of 24. Warren Littlefield introduced me to Joel after we (at FBC) had picked up 24 to series. Joel and I developed a warm and trusting relationship. As I mentioned in my post on 24, when I came up with the idea of moving the show to January and running it non-stop I called Joel and pitched him the idea. I told him I would not discuss it with my bosses unless he was on board. He gave me his blessing and the rest is history.

The reason for Joel’s call that day was to express his frustration with my fellow FOX executives. John McCain was coming to the set which was in the Woodland Hills/Northridge area of the San Fernando Valley. Joel had invited executives from both the studio and the network to come and meet the Senator on the CTU set. They had all turned Joel down so he asked if I would come out to the set as a representative of the network.

Although Joel was, and probably still is, on the extreme end of the right-wing political spectrum he and I could put those things aside. McCain was about to run for the Republican nomination for President. I would never support him nor did I agree with his positions on most things but I did feel that, out of respect for Joel, Howard Gordon et al it would be good to have a network presence so I went.

Senator McCain did a cameo on the episode that was shooting and then he came into the offices and met with several of us. We had a pretty wide ranging discussion and he never made us feel that we were in the presence of the potential future President of the United States. He was just a dude, talking like a dude.

The discussion did come around to Hillary Clinton who at the time was seen as the probable Democratic candidate and I will keep that conversation to myself.

I’m glad that I had the opportunity to meet John McCain who, other than unleashing Sarah Palin on the world, ran a Presidential campaign against the first bi-racial candidate for President that was civil and respectful to the moment in history. I don’t think the current occupant of the White House would have been that respectful of the rules of civility in a Presidential campaign.

I hope Senator McCain is at peace and I thank him for standing up for Americans in the ongoing health care battle.

Positive thoughts to his family.




Thursday, August 9, 2018

SUMMERSLAM 2018 PREDICTIONS, MATCH ORDER AND HOLY SHIT RATINGS


I’m really looking forward to this SUMMERSLAM. It’s been quite a while since a card on a major WWE PPV feels as fully formed over a week out from the event…and by and large it makes sense. What is really exciting here is that there are so many permutations as to how the main event, which I assume will be Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns, will play out; and there’s a “Money in the Bank” contract match which will factor into all this…oh and then there’s the whole Paul Heyman situation. I can’t remember a WWE storyline with so many possibilities, not that the WWE can’t figure out a way to screw this all up and leave the fans confused and disappointed…and as good as this PPV could be it will again be overshadowed by NXT TAKEOVER which invades  Brooklyn’s Barclay Center the night before.
As of now there are eleven matches on the card and I have to believe that there will be a few modifications and probably two pre-show matches. Here are my predictions, match order and “Holy Shit” (💩) expectations for the event. If need be I will update all this after the RAW and SMACKDOWN LIVE “Go Home” shows.
Here we go gang
The Miz vs. Daniel Bryan💩💩💩1/2 (Match Order: Seventh) Here’s where the card kicks it up a notch. I know this looks like a low “Holy Shit” score but I think that this is the beginning of a long program that may take us all the way to WRESTLEMANIA so they can’t leave it all in the ring…unless Bryan does not re-sign in which case this is a 💩💩💩💩💩 match. Miz will win in some questionable way but strap in for months of this feud.

Baron Corbin vs. Finn Balor💩 (Match Order: Fifth) Bathroom break. Finn wins.

The Bludgeon Brothers vs. The New Day (SmackDown Tag Team Championships)💩1/2 (Match Order: Sixth) God I hope it’s the New Day but I think the Bludgees retain in a short match. A shame given the phenomenal ND/Bar match on SMACKDOWN.
UPDATE: It's my prerogative to change my mind and, given the in-ring level that the New Day is operating at right now I think they will take back the belts.

Dolph Ziggler vs. Seth Rollins (Intercontinental Championship)💩💩💩💩 (Match Order: Fourth) These guys can wrestle but this has been going on for so long. I guess Seth wins with Drew McIntyre stepping in for Rollins’ next program. Dean Ambrose may appear here either to help or turn on Rollins.
UPDATE: Well Ambrose showed up on Monday and looked fantastic. This match is going to be pandemonium and should set up many story lines for these solid performers. I'm elevating the "Holy Shit" level to 💩💩💩💩💩

Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Jeff Hardy (United States Championship)💩💩💩1/2 (Match Order: Second) This should be a solid match and keep the buzz going from the KO/Strowman battle. The WWE has prevented Shinsuke from realizing his full potential having totally blown his program with AJ Styles which I thought would steal the show at WRESTLEMANIA. There are rumors Nakamura may be returning to NJPW but I think he will retain. Oh, and Randy Orton will play some role here probably helping Shinsuke win and then turning on him.

Braun Strowman vs. Kevin Owens (Money in the Bank contract is on the line)💩💩💩💩 (Match Order: First) I know that you want to start with an action-packed, high-flying battle and these two lunks, although they can move, will not deliver that kind of match. However, this battle will have a major impact on the main event and the result can play through the rest of the four plus hour show which leads me to believe that Kevin Owens (my hero) is going to find a way to wrest the MITB briefcase from Strowman and factor into the Lesnar/Reigns outcome.
UPDATE: Given Monday's RAW it's clear that Paul Heyman is going to play a significant role here. A Heyman/KO alliance with KO holding the belt would be awesome. I'll hold out hope.

Carmella vs. Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte (SmackDown Women's Championship)💩💩1/2 (Match Order: Third) Two of these women can wrestle and one cannot and she will retain in a way where Becky and Charlotte will start their program.

Alexa Bliss vs. Ronda Rousey (Raw Women's Championship)💩💩💩💩 (Match Order: Ninth) I have become a Ronda Rousey believer and she will defeat Miss Bliss who will put in a surprisingly solid performance here and there will be a Natty turn either during or before the match. This could turn into a three against one (with Mickie James thrown in) to give Rousey a daunting challenge. Guaranteed to exceed expectations.
UPDATE: Well Natty is probably out for this Sunday and if she does show up I doubt she will turn on Rousey. Also it appears that Alicia Fox is the new Mickie James. I haven no idea how all this will impact the match but I still think that there will be a title change here.

AJ Styles vs. Samoa Joe (WWE Championship)💩💩💩💩💩 (Match Order: Eighth) This will be the match of the night with two veterans who know each other really well and, you may remember, both had top shelf contests against Brock Lesnar in the past year. It’s going to be a brutal strong style match. Should be Joe but I think AJ retains.

Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns (Universal Championship)💩💩💩💩1/2 (Main Event) What’s really exciting isn’t the match itself which will be brutal, violent and fairly quick but what happens before and especially after. I’m assuming Heyman does not come down with either of these dudes. There are so many possibilities but the one I’m rooting for is a Reigns win and an Owens run in to beat an exhausted Reigns for the belt and then an alignment with Heyman. If I’m wrong about KO then Strowman runs in and Roman beats him as well to overcome the two monsters, solidify his position as top dog and then turns with Heyman as his advocate. The anticipation for this will be huge.

To summarize in match order and projected winner (*)

Strowman v. Owens* 💩💩💩💩
Nakamora* v. Hardy 💩💩💩1/2
Carmella* v. Lynch v. Charlotte 💩💩1/2
Ziggler v. Rollins* 💩💩💩💩💩
Corbin v. Balor* 💩
Bludgeon Bros. v. New Day* 💩1/2
Miz* v. Bryan 💩💩💩1/2
Styles* v. Joe 💩💩💩💩💩
Rousey* v. Bliss 💩💩💩💩
Reigns* v. Lesnar 💩💩💩💩1/2



Summerslam Bottom Line: 💩💩💩 ½ Holy Shits
Summer Slam Chili: 💩💩💩💩💩💩