WWE's Butch Might Work? Wheeler Yuta Is Breaking out and More Friday Night Takes

The Doctor Chris Mueller@@BR_DoctorFeatured ColumnistApril 9, 2022

WWE's Butch Might Work? Wheeler Yuta Is Breaking out and More Friday Night Takes

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Friday was the post-WrestleMania edition of SmackDown, so quite a bit of time was spent recapping the pay-per-view. All Elite Wrestling Rampage followed up on ROH Supercard of Honor a little, but it still focused its attention on the four matches on the card.

    Ronda Rousey gave an interview to talk about her loss to Charlotte Flair on Saturday. She said she had The Queen beat, but the ref being down cost her the match.

    We also head from Roman Reigns and The Bloodline about what's next for The Tribal Chief and his family to close the show.

    Walter and Marcel Barthel made their SmackDown debut this week, but they did it as Gunther and Ludwig Kaiser respectively. Walter's name was changed a couple of months ago, but this was the first time Barthel used his new monicker.

    Speaking of name changes, we also saw Butch in action against Xavier Woods. Over on Rampage, the main event saw Wheeler Yuta take Jon Moxley to his limit in what could be a star-making performance for the new ROH pure champion.

    Let's look at some of the bigger moments from Friday's wrestling shows. 

We're Probably Getting at Least One Rematch at WrestleMania Backlash

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    Friday's SmackDown opened with Kayla Braxton interviewing Rousey about her match against Charlotte at WrestleMania 38. Kayla noted that Rousey did make The Queen tap out, but it happened while the ref was down and Charlotte ultimately left with the title.

    Rowdy Ronda wasted little time and asked for a rematch at WrestleMania Backlash with the added stipulation of being a Submission match. 

    The Queen responded from backstage and said Rousey had to go to the back of the line. Despite her saying no, there is a good chance this match happens anyway.

    WWE wouldn't bring Rousey out to request a rematch just to keep that possibility off the table. We will likely see The Queen and Sonya Deville put a few hurdles in her way to earn a rematch, but Rousey will clear them and get that title shot eventually.

    The event will take place on May 8, so WWE has plenty of time to set this up. Rousey and Charlotte put on a good show at 'Mania, so upping the stakes by making this a Submission match could make their next encounter even better. 

    If WWE wants to put the SmackDown women's title on Rousey, having her win it in a match where the only way to claim victory is making your opponent tap out is a great way to do it. 

Maybe Butch Will Work out After All

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    When WWE called up Pete Dunne, his name was changed to Butch, and he was given an outfit right out of Newsies and a little hat to match the headwear worn by Sheamus and Ridge Holland.

    The execution of the name change was weird, and most of the segments involving Butch have been forgettable, but Friday's show finally gave him a chance to stand out.

    Not only did he and Woods put on a fun match, but Butch's post-loss temper tantrum that resulted in him slapping Sheamus and Holland a few times was actually entertaining. 

    Turning Butch from a master technician into an uncontrollable ball of rage was a strange decision, but it might just end up working out if The Bruiserweight keeps working hard to get the character over.

    His in-ring work speaks for itself. The thing that will let this gimmick sink or swim will be his character work. Butch is great at portraying aggression, so this might end up being right up his alley. We'll just have to live with the name change. 

All of These Name Changes Are Getting out of Hand

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    Walter underwent a name change to Gunther a couple of months ago, but when he made his SmackDown debut this week, he was joined by the newly christened Ludwig Kaiser.

    Not only did WWE change another member of Imperium's name, but it looks like Gunther and Ludwig will be a tag team without Fabian Aichner by their side. 

    Changing someone's name in WWE is nothing new, but doing it after somebody has had years in WWE under their original name makes no sense. What purpose could it possibly serve unless it was getting around some kind of trademark issue? And if that is the case, why not change their name right away?

    We already talked about Butch, and now we have Gunther and Ludwig. With the way things are going, maybe Aichner lucked out by being left in NXT. His name probably would have been changed to something stereotypically Italian like Lorenzo or Leonardo. 

    Oh, by the way, we also found out Raquel Gonzalez will now be known as Raquel Rodriguez on the main roster. The call-ups are nice to see, but the reasons behind these character changes remain a mystery, especially since some of these people have merchandise with their old names that is now outdated. 

The Bloodline's Next Step Is to Unify the Tag Titles

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    Reigns and The Bloodline appeared on Raw this week, but that promo was just to let us know that we would actually find out their next step on SmackDown.

    As it turns out, the idea Reigns had in mind was for his cousins to emulate him by unifying the Raw and SmackDown Tag Team Championships so The Bloodline has even more belts to show off.

    We still don't know if the WWE and universal titles will be defended separately or not, but if WWE unifies another set of belts, it will be a good indicator that the brand split is coming to an end. 

    We also saw Shinsuke Nakamura confront Reigns, so that could be The Tribal Chief's next challenger for one or both of his titles now that he is no longer in the tag team division because Rick Boogs is injured. 

    The Usos and RK-Bro have already fought a few times during the lead-up to WrestleMania, so it looks like we will get at least one more showdown with both sets of titles on the line. If WWE is looking to end the brand split, these are two good teams to put in that position. 

    The Usos have long been considered one of the best tag teams in the world, and the duo of Riddle and Randy Orton have won over a lot of fans. It will be interesting to see if losing the belts facilitates the breakup of RK-Bro so they can have the singles feud we all know is coming. 

Wheeler Yuta Is Going to Be the AEW Breakout Star of 2022

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    This week's episode of Rampage closed with a match between Moxley and Yuta. After a long and grueling fight, Mox picked up the win.

    What mattered more than the actual winner was how good Yuta looked. He kicked out of two Paradigm Shifts and never tapped out. Moxley had to choke him out to keep him down.

    Not only did this make Yuta look like a beast, but it easily puts him in the running for an early candidate for Match of the Year. This bout could have stood next to any other match on a PPV and felt like it belonged.

    After William Regal showed Yuta that he had earned his respect, it looks like Blackpool Combat Club could finally be ready to extend him a membership card.

    Frankly, BCC would be a better fit for Yuta than Best Friends, so this is something AEW should absolutely do moving forward. It would allow Best Friends to focus on the tag team division again, and it would give Yuta a greater chance to succeed as a singles star.

    We should find out more about this next week. Trent Beretta will probably have something to say about all of this. He has hated Yuta since the start, so this will give them an excuse to finally have a fight. Yuta will have BCC in his corner, and Beretta will have Best Friends in his.

    Maybe beating Beretta is what Yuta will have to do in order to earn his spot in the group. We'll see.

    We saw some good wrestling between both shows on Friday, but Rampage definitely had the Match of the Night with Yuta vs. Moxley. Everything else is competing for second place.