Ring Rust Radio is the best wrestling show on the airwaves, and this week was no different. With strong opinions on John Cena, CM Punk, Night of Champions and more, this is where you need to get all of your weekly WWE nuggets.
Bleacher Report featured columnists Michael Cahill, Brandon Galvin, Mike Chiari and Donald Wood give the lowdown on all things going on in the wrestling world. Former WWE and TNA, and current ROH and Extreme Rising star Matt Hardy brought his inside knowledge to all the wrestling talk. The Ring Rust Radio crew gets down to the crux of the wrestling business with the professionals.
Where would you like to see Matt Hardy compete?
(Some language NSFW)
Oct. 16 - Attitude Era Fantasy Draft
John Cena's Elbow Injury
John Cena and CM Punk did battle over the WWE Championship at Night of Champions, but a controversial ending resulted in Punk retaining the title due to a draw. It seemed like that would be the talk of the week, but WWE.com reported on Tuesday that Cena had surgery to remove bone chips from his elbow. The initial timetable for his return was listed at four-to-six weeks, that was then changed to two-to-three weeks and it has since been revised to six-to-eight weeks.
Question on Everybody's Mind: When Will Cena Return?
There have obviously been a lot of mixed signals sent out by the WWE over the past couple days with regards to Cena's injury, so it's impossible to say for sure when he'll come back. There honestly isn't anyone else for Punk to feud with right now, but with Hell in a Cell six weeks away, there is plenty of time for Cena to recover.
If his recovery time is on the high side of the estimate and it takes him six or seven weeks, though, he'll miss Hell in a Cell. In the event of that happening, a replacement such as Randy Orton would likely have to fill in for Cena at the pay-per-view. Cena is a notoriously quick healer, though, and based on the way the rehabilitation estimation has changed a few times already, WWE may be playing some mind games with the fans.
Ring Rust Radio's Take
It's certainly possible that the six-to-eight week time frame is legitimate, but I tend to say that the WWE is working us. Cena went on a random twitter tirade about WWE "falsely" reporting the recovery time at two-to-three weeks, and that just doesn't add up. Cena is a company guy through and through and there is absolutely no way that he would criticize the company that has made him a star unless he was told to do so.
The likely scenario here is that the WWE wanted to create some doubt as far as Cena's return date goes so he can come back with a bang in two or three weeks. It took Cena three months to recover from what was supposed to be a year-long pectoral injury in late 2007, so I doubt it will take him two months to recover from a much less serious injury. This is about nothing more than building suspense.
Bleacher Report Insider Scoop: How Cena's Absence Will Affect CM Punk
Matt Hardy Interview
Ring Rust Radio was lucky enough to have former WWE and TNA star Matt Hardy on the show yet again this week, and just like in his first appearance, he certainly didn't disappoint. Hardy is currently doing work for Ring of Honor and Extreme Rising, and he is most definitely a renaissance man in the business. Hardy has been everywhere and done everything, so it's great to see him returning to his roots to some degree.
Question on Everybody's Mind: Will Matt Hardy Ever Return to WWE?
While Hardy's involvement with ROH and Extreme Rising dominated most of the interview, the question of a potential WWE return inevitably came up as it always does. No matter where Hardy has been or where he ends up going, he will always be known as a WWE guy, and he acknowledged that. He is perfectly content with what he's doing right now, though.
Hardy isn't old by any means at the age of 37, but he has wrestled for many years and the fact of the matter is that it has taken a toll on his body. No matter how physically fit you are, wrestling night in and night out for two decades is a tough lifestyle. Hardy worked the heavy WWE schedule for a long time, but it's unclear if he would be willing to go back to it.
Ring Rust Radio's Take
Hardy was somewhat noncommittal when asked about WWE and that leads me to believe that he has no plans of going back. He mentioned the lighter travel and wrestling schedule as well as the more laid-back demeanor of the indy scene as positives and it just seems to be more his speed at this point. Hardy did say that he would be willing to go back in a perfect world where he could work a thinner schedule.
Whether the WWE would offer that is a totally different question, though. Even if Hardy can't perform the all-out aerial style that he once was known for, he continues to reinvent himself and has plenty to bring to the table wherever he competes.
WWE may not be in the cards for him, but he has a great opportunity to bring more awareness of ROH, Extreme Rising and all the other smaller promotions he's helping out currently.
Bleacher Report Insider Scoop: Matt Hardy Discusses WWE, ROH and ER with RRR
Aftermath of TNA No Surrender
Last week's edition of Impact was like so many others over the past couple months in that it was repetitive and really didn't add anything to the product. Jeff Hardy defeated Bully Ray in the finals of the Bound For Glory Series at No Surrender despite a shoulder injury, so he is set to face Austin Aries for the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. For whatever reason, though, Hardy and Bully Ray wrestled on the ensuing episode of impact.
Question on Everybody's Mind: What Was the Point of the BFG Series?
Poor booking decisions are far from an abnormality in TNA, and last week was a perfect example of why it is always one step forward and two steps back for the company. Many probably would have preferred Bully Ray to win the Bound For Glory Series since he's TNA's top heel and could have posed a great threat to Aries, but Hardy winning isn't exactly egregious.
He and Aries can put on a spectacular match, so I'm not concerned about that, but why have Hardy and Bully Ray wrestle again after already doing so at No Surrender? TNA tried to build up the Bound For Glory Series into a big deal, but with the rematch it basically told the fans that the entire tournament was all for naught.
Ring Rust Radio's Take
I've often voiced my displeasure with the Bound For Glory Series on the show and I stand by my criticism of it. The purpose of it should be to elevate one guy to No. 1 contender status above all others. It's hard to do that when everyone is constantly beating each other, but TNA did what it had to do with Hardy. Rather than having him win the series and leaving it at that, though, he gave Bully Ray another shot for no apparent reason.
What that means is that TNA's fans essentially wasted their money on No Surrender because the main event meant nothing. The same exact match with the same exact stakes happened a few days later with no explanation behind it. That would be like the Royal Rumble winner putting his win on the line the very next night in WWE. It would never happen in the WWE and something similar shouldn't be happening in TNA, either.
Bleacher Report Insider Scoop: TNA Impact Breakdown
Check back for more on World Wrestling Entertainment as it comes, and visit Bleacher Report’s Wrestling Page to get your fill of WWE/TNA. For more Wrestling talk, listen to Ring Rust Radio for all the hottest topics.