Ring Rust Radio is the best wrestling show on the airwaves, and this week was no different. With strong opinions on CM Punk, Ryback, John Cena 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 giving the lowdown on all things going on in the wrestling world.
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Oct. 30 - Bleacher Report Video Game Expert Brian Mazique
Nov. 6 - Former WWE and current ROH star Charlie Haas
Handicapping CM Punk vs. Ryback
With Hell in a Cell set for Sunday, it seems pretty clear that the WWE is going to go through with CM Punk vs, Ryback for the WWE Championship. Most fans, myself included, figured that it would be Punk against John Cena, especially after the finish at Night of Champions, but Cena's elbow simply didn't heal in time.
Say what you will about Ryback, but he has gained a big following over the past few months and is the most-talked-about superstar in the WWE right now. Ryback may not provide the best wrestling match, but in terms of generating buzz, he appears to be a fine replacement for Cena.
Question on Everybody's Mind: Who Will Win at Hell in a Cell?
If Punk were facing Cena on Sunday then it would seem pretty obvious that Punk would come out on top, and he is definitely the favorite against Ryback as well, but the WWE has some options. As much as it may want Punk to retain the title, there is some danger in having Ryback lose as well, so there is a big decision to be made.
Ring Rust Radio's Take
I can understand wanting to protect Ryback, and in a perfect world he wouldn't have to be in such a tough situation, but the WWE made its bed and now it has to lie in it. Ryback is a sensation right now, but if he is given the title, I have a feeling that the WWE will ultimately regret it. He is limited in terms of technical ability and mic skills, so having Punk retain and keep the belt until Royal Rumble is the smart move.
In an effort to lessen the blow to some degree, the WWE has to have Punk win via interference. The most obvious choice is Brock Lesnar because of his relationship with Paul Heyman and the fact that he would make for a great rival to Ryback. A loss is still a loss, but at least Ryback would have an excuse and even a potential WrestleMania opponent moving forward.
Rumor Mill: WWE Having Trouble Booking WWE Title Match (Wrestling Observer via WrestleZone)
Determining What's Next for John Cena
You never know what the WWE might pull from its sleeve, but as of right now, John Cena is not scheduled to compete at Hell in a Cell. It is clear that the original plan was for him to face Punk in the cell, but elbow surgery to remove bone chips from his elbow has kept him on the shelf.
Cena announced on Monday that he was medically cleared to compete, but I have my doubts since he didn't get involved physically at all. Perhaps by Sunday he will be able to wrestle or at least do a couple moves if need be, but it looks like Cena will be used in a different capacity.
Question on Everybody's Mind: What Will Cena's Role Be at Hell in a Cell?
A pay-per-view without a John Cena match is pretty tough to fathom, but it will be interesting to see how things play out. Cena is currently scheduled to speak on the pre-show about the allegations that he and former RAW general manager A.J. Lee had an affair. Whether he does more than that remains to be seen.
Since Cena is going to be at Hell in a Cell anyway, though, I have to believe that he will have some involvement on the show itself. It would be a waste not to utilize him in some way if he is available, so we'll probably see him stick his nose in a match at some point.
Ring Rust Radio's Take
I have a couple theories, but the most likely involves the CM Punk vs. Ryback match. Punk is probably going to be thrown around the cell for much of the match, and that might prompt Paul Heyman to use bolt cutters in an effort to open the cell door. Before he can do it, though, Cena will run down and stop him. Lesnar will then appear, however, take out Cena and enter the cell to help Punk win.
A possible alternative is Cena stopping Dolph Ziggler from cashing in his Money in the Bank contract. All signs point to Ziggler trying to do precisely that, but I can't see him getting to the point where a match actually starts. Since Vickie Guerrero was responsible for A.J. losing her job, Cena may foil Ziggler to exact a measure of revenge against Vickie.
Rumor Mill: WWE Planning to Take It Easy with John Cena (F4WOnline via WrestlingInc)
TNA Bound For Glory Aftermath
TNA's biggest event of the year has come and gone in the form of Bound For Glory, but things seem even more uncertain now than they did before. Last week's edition of Impact attempted to use Bound For Glory as a springboard, but the show was as lackluster as the pay-per-view was.
With so many muddled storylines taking place at one time, it is no wonder that TNA's viewership has been dropping as well. It looked like TNA was on the right track for a while in terms of booking and character development, but the past couple months have been brutal to say the least.
Ring Rust Radio's Take
If I had to narrow TNA's problems down to one thing, it would have to be the entire Aces & Eights debacle. It seemed somewhat promising when it started, but the angle has been stale for a couple months as the same things happen each and every week. The group gained full access to the Impact Zone by winning at Bound For Glory, but they simply brawled with the TNA roster and were scared off by a bat. It's like Groundhog Day.
There is no question that TNA vastly overrated the impact that revealing Devon as a member of Aces & Eights would make. It was certainly surprising, but a surprise doesn't necessarily mean it was good. I realize that he isn't the leader, but it seems pretty obvious that Eric Bischoff is, and if that is honestly the big payoff, then TNA will somehow manage to get even worse.
Rumor Mill: Impact Ratings on the Decline (NoDQ.com)
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