It's Time for The Usos to Lose, Bray Wyatt-LA Knight Heats Up, More WWE and AEW Takes
The Friday night block of wrestling may not have been designed to set up NXT Deadline and ROH Final Battle this weekend, but both shows did a little work to advertise those events.
The New Day will battle Pretty Deadly for the NXT tag titles, but they first had to team up with Ricochet to take on Imperium before the high flyer clashes with Gunther for the Intercontinental Championship.
We also saw The Usos in action against Sheamus and Butch, and LA Knight continued his feud with Bray Wyatt despite the latter not appearing on the show directly.
Over on Rampage, we saw some great action, but the usual four-match setup is beginning to wear thin.
The Usos Need to Lose the Titles at Royal Rumble
There is no denying that Jimmy and Jey Uso have cemented their place in history as one of WWE's top tag teams, especially after setting another record with their current reign, but everything has to come to an end eventually.
When it comes to the men's world title, it's easier to justify a longer reign because you can book so many different opponents as credible challengers. The tag team division does not have the same luxury.
We have seen The Usos defend the Undisputed Tag Team Championships against just about every team WWE has to offer, and most of them have tried to unseat the champs multiple times.
As great as all of this stuff with The Usos and Bloodline has been, it's time for WWE to take one or both sets of tag titles off them so the rest of the division can thrive again.
Alpha Academy, The Street Profits, Viking Raiders and Brawling Brutes all deserve to have their time in the sun. Having such a historic run end on TV is unlikely, so the next time WWE will have a good chance to end The Usos' reign is The Royal Rumble. It's time to make it happen.
LA Knight Was the Best Choice to Be Bray Wyatt's First Rival
Wyatt returned to WWE all the way back at Extreme Rules but has yet to step into the ring for a match. That is all about to change soon.
Management has chosen LA Knight to be the first rival for this new version of Wyatt's character, and even though he might seem like an odd choice due to their conflicting personalities, Knight is one of the best options WWE could have picked.
Not only is he great on the mic and in the ring, but he is also somewhat new to the main roster. He only just started being a competitor recently after he ditched Maximum Male Models, so he can afford to put Wyatt over before he gets his own push.
The contrasting personalities of these two men could end up making this program a lot of fun, so picking someone so far removed from the supernatural side of the business might have been the most satisfying way to tell this story.
It's unclear when they will actually step into the ring for a fight, but it's probably going to happen before The Royal Rumble. Stretching this out until January 28 would be way too long.
WWE Has Done a Great Job Making Midcard Titles Feel Important Again
For a long time, WWE didn't seem to know how it wanted to use the United States and Intercontinental Championships, but that has changed in the past few months.
Both the U.S. and IC titles have been heavily featured on television, especially since Roman Reigns become the undisputed universal champion. We have even seen a lot of main event talents competing for what are usually viewed as midcard titles.
Bobby Lashley, Seth Rollins and Sheamus are all former world champions who have tried to get their hands on these belts, with varying levels of success.
While WWE should consider making the WWE and Universal Championships separate prizes again at some point, you can't overlook what the current situation has done for the midcard belts.
Seeing Ricochet and others pursue Gunther and the IC title has made it feel coveted, and the same can be said about the U.S. Championship on Raw. Let's hope this trend continues in 2023 so we can see more high-profile matches involving these belts.
Rampage Needs to Mix Up Formula, Ditch 4th Match
For quite some time, AEW Rampage has followed a predictable pattern. The first and last matches are always the most important. One other match in the middle will get decent time, but that other bout in the middle section is almost always a quick squash.
Not only are we past the point of squash matches really doing anything for a wrestler who is already an established name, but having one bout that always ends in under two or three minutes takes time away from everything else on the show.
Backstage segments and interviews feel rushed on Rampage because the show is only an hour. Having that extra couple of minutes would allow the company to tell more stories, or tell the existing stories more effectively.
Having a fourth match can sometimes be to the show's benefit, but it usually just ends up feeling pointless and forgettable. Unless it's a new star who is trying to prove their dominance over local talents, there is no reason a squash match needs to be included on any show, especially one as short as Rampage.
Three bouts that all have enough time to be good and a couple of non-wrestling segments would be a much better formula most weeks, but that also means fewer people get the spotlight, so it's a bit of a tradeoff.