Posted in: Mr. Tito
MR. TITO STRIKES BACK - Why Samoa Joe MUST Defeat Brock Lesnar and GLOW Netflix Review
By Mr. Tito
Jul 8, 2017 - 9:48:00 AM

Follow Mr. Tito on @titowrestling

Welcome back to the column that is the one who knocks, Mr. Tito STRIKES BACK exclusively here at / I'll tell ya, folks... I'm excited for the WWE Great Balls of Fire RAW exclusive Pay Per View this Sunday. Actually, I'm just excited for 1 match: Brock Lesnar vs. Samoa Joe (well, the 30 minute Iron Man Tag Team match, too).

Now, I already covered Lesnar vs. Joe in my June 10th, 2017 Column: "Samoa Joe Should CHOKE OUT Brock Lesnar at WWE Great Balls of Fire" about 6 days after the last RAW exclusive Pay Per View, WWE Extreme Rules 2017. I mainly wrote the column because Joe vs. Brock was a UNIQUE match-up and I'm getting tired of the Rollins, Reigns, and sometimes even Strowman show. Great reaction from that column and I've seen some momentum of "let Joe win" calls by wrestling fans since.

Better yet for the WWE, I actually gave them a legitimate plan on how to book the next 8-9 months... I'll call it the "Tito Plan".

(1) Samoa Joe defeats Brock Lesnar at WWE Great Balls of Fire via choke-out, wins WWE Universal Title.

(2) Brock Lesnar vs. Samoa Joe at SummerSlam 2017, any outcome could work.

(3) Brock Lesnar defeats Samoa Joe at WWE Hell in a Cell (assuming that's RAW PPV) to end feud.

Some of y'all are like "Brock will lose his heat". Excuse me, but could you tell me when Brock Lesnar gave up being (a) former NCAA Heavyweight Champion, (b) former UFC Heavyweight Champion, (c) winner of a UFC fight last year, (d) former New Japan champion, (e) multi-time WWE Champion, (f) slayer of the Undertaker's Wrestlemania streak, and (g) considered one of the most dangerous hand-to-hand fighters of all time. Yeah, losing to Samoa Joe just instantly erases that, right? Whatever.

Continuing onward with the "Tito Plan", as SummerSlam 2017 reportedly will have Braun Strowman vs. Brock Lesnar and then Wrestlemania 34 will feature Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns with Reigns finishing off Brock on his last contractual date. I strongly disagree with this notion, particularly on Roman Reigns. I would divert Roman Reigns off to a feud with John Cena at Wrestlemania 34 instead as that's a unique match-up and the New Orleans fans will love to troll that match. Instead, the MEGA PUSH should go towards Braun Strowman in the "Tito Plan":

(4) Braun Strowman wins the 2018 Royal Rumble Match to become the #1 contender for Wrestlemania 34.

(5) Braun Strowman defeats Brock Lesnar 100% clean at Wrestlemania 34 to win his first WWE Universal Title and a strong champion push follows.

But let's get back to Brock Lesnar vs. Samoa Joe at the WWE Great Balls of Fire... This match has a BIG MATCH FEEL in that it feels like a serious prize fight or even a Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) bout. Why? Obviously, we have not seen this match before... However, I believe it's due to Joe debuting earlier this year and not being as over-exposed as the rest of the WWE roster (like Reigns). Additionally, think the trip to the NXT brand has helped Samoa Joe re-establish the monster he once was in Ring of Honor and his early run at TNA. Great example of how a trip to the NXT developmental system can help wrestlers from other promotions.

I've argued this for YEARS... WWE has to steal the thunder of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) promotions like UFC. For years, UFC has been stealing the teenage to 25 year old audience from the WWE. That is the lifeblood of growing your wrestling business. Because they have 3 hours of weekly RAW, 2 hours of weekly Smackdown, and 3 hours of monthly Pay Per Views, the WWE burns through any potentially drawing match-ups. Furthermore, watching 5 to 8 hours of WWE content per week over-exposes their roster. An advantage that UFC has is "less is more" by their Pay Per Views as the "must see" with their FOX presentations and Ultimate Fighter feeling more optional than anything. Plus, their top UFC fighters DO NOT fight every Per Per View. WWE champions HAVE to wrestle EVERY single Pay Per View... The one exception? Brock Lesnar and just LOOK at how excited we are to see him wrestle again.

Less is more, folks. Less is more.

Here's a good example... The NFL began running Thursday Night games a few years ago? Has that really helped their product? Sure, they can convince CBS to pay more money but their viewership actually declined last year. Furthermore, they've taken their ESPN relationship on Monday Night Football for granted. With the NFL, it's feeling like games only on Sunday feel "special" while Thursday and Monday night games are lacking good match-ups. Ratings for MLB, NBA, and NHL regular seasons continue to decline in viewership because they've flooded the market with games to watch. It's not "special" to see the New York Yankees or Golden State Warriors on television as they are on often. Many just wait until the Playoffs to begin watching those leagues when the games matter, particularly with NBA and NHL playoff systems being easier to enter. NBA had a real problem during 2016-2017 getting their teams to care at all during the regular season.

Less is more.

That's what I argued about New Japan last week... When they have events, they feel "special" to wrestling fans because they aren't weekly or even monthly. If New Japan had a Cable TV deal that required them to fill 5 hours of content with a split brand and then 2 Pay Per Views per month at 3 hours each... Oh yeah, 1 hour show per 205 and NXT shows run... They'd feel as over-exposed as WWE. I still feel that Roman Reigns is NOT "the guy", but the WWE could better hide his flaws if they didn't have to present him on television so much. 3 hours of RAW weekly and performing on a 3 hour Pay Per View per month is brutal. Then again, other stars have been getting over with the 2 hour RAW and monthly Pay Per View schedule. Yep, it's Roman... He's not a big star.

Brock Lesnar vs. Samoa Joe feels BIG and sort of legitimate like a MMA fight. In fact, that's how the WWE wisely been marketing this match. WWE should do this. They have the ultimate advantage over MMA in that WWE is scripted. When you buy a WWE Pay Per View, you mostly won't have any match letdowns. Watch UFC and their biggest match-ups could be over in just a few moments. Other things could happen, too, like referees calling fights too early, real injuries, or other technicalities that have blocked their best match-ups from happening. Plus, any MMA fighters who LOSE are very damaged as stars and it's hard to get back on top. WWE can book rises and falls of wrestlers as needed. They can make a 50 year old Bill Goldberg look invincible and legitimately draw again against Brock Lesnar. Contrast that to UFC and Ronda Rousey. Her losses have pretty much ended her UFC career unless she starts small and begins to build up a winning streak to challenge for the top again. Better yet, think about CM Punk. His 1 UFC loss will probably keep him off those shows forever.

WWE's booking can protect ANYONE as Champion and build anybody back-up as long as the writing is good. Look at Jinder Mahal. He had a lifetime 19% or so winning percentage in any match that he wrestled in and on RAW from August 2016 until the "Superstar Shake-up" move to Smackdown, he didn't win ANY televised matches. Then, he moves to Smackdown and can instantly win to become #1 contender. Then, he wins the WWE title. NOW, I'm using a BAD example because NOBODY and I repeat NOBODY should be pushed to the World Title that fast... But I'm using it as an example how the WWE booking can be used to make anybody look good, protect any wrestler or champion.

Of course, the WWE Creative Team can overdo it particularly when they pick the WRONG GUY to be their top guy. Roman Reigns is such an example in addition to Jinder Mahal. Let me remind you of Roman's resume of wins again:
- Only Shield member to defeat CM Punk and cleanly, January 2014 RAW
- Defeats Randy Orton cleanly at SummerSlam 2014
- Wins the Slammy for "Wrestler of the Year" despite wrestling tag matches for the first half of the year and being injured for the latter end of the second half of 2014.
- Wins the 2015 Royal Rumble Match
- Beats Daniel Bryan CLEANLY
- Wrestles Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania 31, did not lose to Lesnar
- Defeats Triple H 100% clean at Wrestlemania 32
- Defeats Undertaker 100% clean at Wrestlemania 33
- Multiple non-title wins over WWE Universal Champion Kevin Owens
- Already beat Braun Strowman
- Multiple wins over Bray Wyatt and Seth Rollins, owns them.

How is Roman Reigns NOT over again? Do you believe that putting Reigns over Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania 34 will HELP him? LOL... It's just another overbooked win for Reigns, just another booking crutch.

But compare that to Samoa Joe... How many "big" WWE wins does he have? Eh... You could maybe count those RAW matches against Roman but Roman has valid excuses why he lost those... Ugh.

My point is that Samoa Joe defeating Brock Lesnar would have a GREATER IMPACT than Roman Reigns defeating Lesnar. Secondly, I'd also argue that Braun Strowman defeating Lesnar would have a GREATER IMPACT than Roman defeating Lesnar. It's just another sad booking attempt by WWE Creative and Vince McMahon to get Roman over... However for Joe and Braun, their BIG WIN resumes are thin and they aren't as over-exposed to WWE fans as Reigns. That's their biggest win of their careers whereas for Roman, is it? He RETIRED THE UNDERTAKER, folks... Roman have have driven the final nail in the Main Event singles careers of CM Punk and Daniel Bryan. Seriously. He beat Triple H for the WWE Title at a Wrestlemania. And lastly, Roman Reigns HAS ALREADY WRESTLED Brock Lesnar!

Samoa Joe MUST and I repeat MUST CHOKE OUT Brock Lesnar at the WWE Great Balls of Fire RAW exclusive Pay Per View. Failure to do so with Brock retaining will END any potential that Samoa Joe COULD have in the WWE. It's over. He'll be just another upper midcarder on the WWE roster which are plentiful these days. What WWE needs is a stronger main event scene with multiple options. This win would "make Joe" and elevate his star power significantly.

In case you haven't noticed the RAW ratings lately... We were seriously trending under 2.5 million viewers for RAW before the last Pay Per View. Then, Samoa Joe becomes #1 contender and Braun Strowman returns... BOOM, we're back near 2.9 million again (still at my "permanently under 3.0 million" prediction, though). Point is, there is SOME interest in Joe vs. Lesnar compared to what was being pushed hard before that match-up was created. You know, trying to convince us that Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns, and Bray Wyatt are "stars". THEY'RE NOT. Each of those 3 have the most destructive World Title runs, ratings wise, over the last decade. Nothing but declined viewership when they were champions.

Wrestling fans are tell you, WWE, that they want MORE of Samoa Joe and Braun Strowman and LESS of Roman Reigns/Seth Rollins/Bray Wyatt.

By the way, I always LAUGH at the Roman Reigns "sells merchandise" argument that some of you try to make. How is that? John Cena has been part-time and on Smackdown for the last 3 years. The RAW audience has been reduced by 1 million and the attendance for live shows have dropped by the thousands. So if a smaller audience is buying X-amount of merchandise, is that really a gain? Particularly if you flood that market with merchandise (go to Walmart or Toys R Us, plenty available to buy). And kids are easily fooled... They'll beg their parents to buy anything at live events. But again, there are fewer of them attending WWE events in the first place.

It's when those younger fans get to their TEENAGE years is where the WWE loses them. That's where over-pushing a goof like Roman Reigns kills your audience. Teenagers get smart to when something is force-fed and manufactured by the WWE. That's when they become MMA fans! That's why, in my opinion, pushing John Cena like Hulk Hogan (invincible babyface who overcomes all odds often) has been bad for WWE business. Once those younger fans of the Cena nation grow up, they get "smart" to what the WWE is trying to feed them. WWE begins to look fake and synthetic to them when John Cena can easily win handicap matches week after week while cutting the lamest babyface promos. On top of that, pushing the WRONG GUY to be World Champion (Sheamus, Miz, Jack Swagger, Alberto Del Rio, different versions of Randy Orton) has been detrimental as well. Teenage fans see right through WWE's crap and leaves... They become UFC fans, as their numbers in the teenage to 25 demographics are getting stronger.

Which is why Samoa Joe vs. Brock Lesnar is not only drawing, but is important to the WWE. It FEELS like a MMA like match that only the WWE can present. Lesnar is a former UFC Heavyweight Champion and won a fight last year. Joe has a reputation of being one of the legitimately tougher wrestlers and hasn't been over-exposed in the WWE with his short career on the main WWE roster. Thus, you can market Joe vs. Lesnar as appearing legitimate and it hooks the teenage fans, who are leaning towards becoming UFC fans, to follow this feud.

And if Samoa Joe were to win and become WWE Universal Champion... SHOCK THE WORLD!

We'll see if Vince McMahon has the balls to do it or if he's absolutely certain that Roman Reigns is his guy. Maybe that's why the upcoming Pay Per View is called Great BALLS of Fire. Maybe it's the first event where Vince McMahon proves that he can evolve as a promoter and actually listen to the fans? Maybe this is the event that Vince finally shows the balls to disregard the large contract paying Roman and the many resources devoted to that turd of a wrestler and moves on.

Knowing the WWE, they'll let Samoa Joe win the WWE Universal Title and then he'll lose multiple non-title matches to Roman Reigns and others. Then, maybe Joe could lose it at a Houseshow with zero hype?

I've given you SIMPLE plans on how to book the next 8 months and it takes care of your other boy (which I like), Braun Strowman.

(A) Samoa Joe defeats Lesnar at Great Balls.
(B) Rematches of Joe vs. Lesnar at both SummerSlam & Hell in a Cell, Lesnar retains WWE Universal Title.
(C) Braun Strowman wins the 2018 Royal Rumble match
(D) Braun Strowman defeats Brock Lesnar cleanly at Wrestlemania 34

What happens after that is all dependent on HOW the WWE develops is rosters in the next 8 months. Do booking repairs of Roman Reigns or keep Samoa Joe strong? Another "Superstar Shake-up"? Hopefully not.


Mr. Tito's PHAT Review: GLOW from Netflix

I binge watched the Comedy/Drama on Netflix called GLOW. GLOW stands for "Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling" which creates a fictionalized representation of the real promotion that began in the mid-1980s as a response to wrestling's television boom during the 1980s. Basically, the premise was that the entertainment industry in California saw what was happening with wrestling's growth and sought to manufacture a female wrestling promotion. They did a legitimate casting call of actors, models, and athletes (all shapes & sizes) in attempts to "cast" the perfect roster.

This show is fun to watch. The acting, overall, is good, particularly with the main 3 stars with Alison Brie (Ruth Wilder or "Zoya the Destroya"), Betty Gilpen (Debbie Eagan or "Liberty Belle", and the cocaine sniffing producer Sam Sylvia played by Marc Maron. Those 3 crush their roles but the supporting cast is excellent as well. Multiple characters to love and enjoy. I personally like the "Welfare Queen" character played by Awesome Kong/Kharma. They also have an Andre the Giant like character who has multiple family members as wrestlers (played by Carlito and Brodus Clay) whom I like as well. And if you're a horndog, the women in this show are mostly easy on your eyes and the R-Rating lets you see their boobies. Nothing wrong with that...

What I LOVE about the show is how much they get RIGHT about the wrestling industry. As over-the-top as the producer and the money guy Sebastian "Bash" Howard are, their tastes/preferences on what wrestling SHOULD BE to sell to wrestling fans are quite accurate. For example, Bash hates the characters that Sam initially comes up with and creates characters based on obvious stereotypes. Now, you could argue how politically incorrect that is, but at the end of the day, wrestling needs to put more butts-in-seats and eyeballs-on-screens. Until you have that big drawing star, like a Hulk Hogan which the show alludes to repeatedly, you have to work with what you have on the roster. BE INTERESTING.

The show took a great swipe at the WWE, I thought, in one of the earlier shows. Sam, the producer, also made a bunch of low budget horror films. Thus, he's a film guy trying to be a wrestling promoter. When he's showing his work to Bash, the show is fully scripted with wrestlers struggling to read through a script. Bash was not impressed and in fact invites the entire GLOW roster to his house for a party. It was there that he had them all dress in costumes of their choice and become their own characters. Scripts were thrown out and many of the wrestlers had creative input over their matches, their characters, and storylines. In fact, the final match between Zoya and Belle was of both wrestlers coming up with a scheme to have that match. Of course, Sam would ruin that when he'd decide to basically have a "money in the bank" like cash in after that match.

GLOW nails what wrestling SHOULD be... Over-the-top and Larger-than-life characters competing in what appears to be a legitimate sports competition between Good vs. Evil. Not much to it, as defining character traits can add to the hype of a match anywhere. WWE has added too much depth around their characters, over complicating their business. GLOW kept it simple... During the 1980s, it was USA vs. Russia with the last decade of the Cold War. Liberty Belle is the obvious All-American babyface whereas Zoya the Destroya is from the Soviet Union and is very loud about it. Simple... You take the trends of the time and dump gasoline on top of it. Characters in the WWE are too bland, too lame... In fact, most are just regular guys or gals now to take the fun out of it.

Seeing the GLOW roster get formed to where they put on their first television tapings is a real treat. The journey there is filled with laughs and real drama while, in my opinion, doing a good service to pro wrestling. Chavo Guerrero trained everyone while Alex Riley, John Morrison, Carlito, and Brodus Clay make good appearances. In particular, when Carlito and Clay train Belle and Zoya on fundamentals to prepare for their match, it's well done. What I particularly liked, though, was how GLOW made each character become intoxicated by the wrestling business. Liberty Belle, a former soap opera actress and had real life heat with her friend Zoya (or Ruth), didn't want to join the GLOW promotion but once she got hooked and wanted to perform well in front of the audience, things got good. Alison Brie is exceptional in her role as Ruth Wilder or Zoya the Destoya. Her character is flawed and nerdy but the level of dedication that Ruth shows to becoming Zoya the Destroya is awesome.

Shows are 30 minutes long and they go quick. You'll binge this show in no time.

As a wrestling fan, you'll appreciate it. It does great justice towards the business. As a drama, the conflict between Debbie (Liberty Belle) and Ruth (Zoya the Destroya) in & out of the ring is excellent television. They have real life heat and yet through the wrestling business, they can come together and put on a great match. I laughed often at this show as a comedy. It's legitimately Rated R for its content, nudity, and language... But Sam and Bash as the guys overseeing this GLOW projects and the many colorful wrestlers themselves provide lots of laughs. Show is full of chaos, too, to keep you compelled and interested to finish.

LAST WORD: A+, strongly recommended. If anything, it's FUN and will provide you with a quick 30 minute "burner" show on Netflix to binge. It does justice to the wrestling business while being highly entertaining from great acting, comedy, and surprisingly strong drama. Hopefully, we get multiple seasons of this to see how the GLOW promotion grows with this cast of characters. I want more.


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