Cheap Heat Podcast on Grantland Sports
Hosts: David Shoemaker & Peter Rosenberg
Release Date: January 6, 2016
Recap by Corey Freedman
Top Items Covered
– No Stat Guy Greg this week.
– Shoemaker and Rosenberg try to make sense of the referee situation at the end of Raw’s main event.
– Shoemaker and Rosenberg agree that Rock vs. Brock is not the best way to go for WM32 for a few different reasons.
– The hosts don’t mind the Social Outcasts stable, but feel like the way it is currently presented will limit them to being a glorified job squad.
– Rosenberg praises the heel work of Charlotte and Ric Flair.
Subjects Covered (w/timestamps)
0:00 – Introduction
6:30 – Raw in Brooklyn
10:40 – Vince on TV
17:15 – Roman Reigns
23:50 – Rock at WM 32
35:05 – Vince and Jerry Jones/Football discussion
40:30 – Social Outcasts
46:25 – NJPW stars heading to WWE
53:15 – MVP of the week
57:20 – Conclusion
Introduction: The hosts talk about taking last week off to celebrate the New Year. David Shoemaker’s birthday is on NYE so they talk about celebrating both at the same time. They also talk about NYE celebrations on TV.
Raw in Brooklyn: Shoemaker talks about going to the RAW in Brooklyn and it being kind of a boring show (though he notes that he didn’t really expect anything else for a year end show). He worries that they are going to continue to put boring shows in Brooklyn because it being in Brooklyn would make that show seem more exciting. Shoemaker complains about some of the fans at Raw in Brooklyn. He says one guy behind him was shouting terribly juvenile/pathetic things at the wrestlers. He also talks about seeing the Harlem Globetrotters in Brooklyn and comparing it to wrestling.
Vince on TV: They talk briefly about Vince McMahon’s increased role probably being related to the declining ratings and wanting to get someone on TV that people will recognize/care about. Shoemaker brings up the botched ending in Monday’s Raw main event (the situation with a second ref coming to the ring even though Vince wasn’t knocked out). Rosenberg thinks Vince was supposed to be hurt and got up too early. Shoemaker responds by saying Roman Reigns seemed to heading towards Vince, either for a Superman Punch or Spear, so he had to be up when Sheamus hit Reigns with the Brogue Kick. It doesn’t seem like the hosts know exactly what went wrong with that finish, but they could certainly tell that something was off. Shoemaker talks about it being somewhat hard to watch Vince taking bumps given his age. Rosenberg talks about feeling kind of bummed out seeing watching some of these guys (Vince, Flair, Hogan) in their primes and then seeing them older and in worse shape.
Roman Reigns: Shoemaker starts by noting that we have seen the “McMahon’s keeping someone down” storyline before, but in Reigns’s defense, they have at least found a way to get the crowd interested in a storyline involving Reigns. Shoemaker says that he is “super intrigued” by Reigns having to defend his title in the Royal Rumble. He calls it a smart booking decision because it removes him having a singles defense that people would presumably know he was going to win and “smark boo” throughout. Rosenberg also responds that they didn’t really have that many options for him to defend against at the Royal Rumble anyway.
Shoemaker says he doesn’t think it would be a good look for Reigns to come in late and win, but he kind of likes the idea of Reigns entering early and running through a bunch of people. Rosenberg, however, says that runs the risk of feeling too forced (i.e. we get it, he overcame all the odds in the world). Rosenberg doesn’t think he is going to win the Rumble. He thinks Triple H will win or Vince will cost Reigns the Rumble. They talk about the possibility of Hunter and Reigns fighting at WM. Rosenberg notes that it should never be ruled out that Hunter would put the belt on himself.
Rock at WM32: Rosenberg and Shoemaker try to figure out what The Rock’s role will be at WM32. Rosenberg brings up the possibility of Rock vs. Brock. Shoemaker jokes that it would be one of the sweatiest matches of all time. Rosenberg notes that it would be interesting because it would be a match between the most realistic fighter (Brock) and one of the most unrealistic fighters (Rock). They don’t necessarily mean that in a derogatory way towards the Rock, but they are just pointing out what an odd decision it would be to use Brock’s best feature (his believability/realism) with someone who is almost the direct opposite in terms of style. They talk about the risk of putting Rock and Brock together because it puts so much of the main event talent in the same match. They both agree it might be a better idea to spread out the top dogs so that you can have a more balanced card. Rosenberg suggests Rock vs. Randy Orton (admitting that it may not be possible given Orton’s health).
Vince/Jones/Football: The hosts talk about Vince McMahon being in Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones’s box during the Cowboys game. They also talk a bit about NFL football. Rosenberg talks a little about D.J. Khaled as well.
Social Outcasts: Rosenberg notes how much he hates promos where everyone passes the mic so they can say their part. He also wonders if Heath Slater has some good backstage credit because he is given a decent amount of opportunities. Rosenberg says he hated how separate they all seemed. Shoemaker wonders how this group is different than The Miz trying to help people reclaim their careers. He also asks why Damien Sandow isn’t in this group. Rosenberg says Sandow must be the biggest fall-off post-WM31. They talk a bit about Sandow’s interview with them at WM31 last year. Shoemaker says that he worries this group is focusing too much on the gimmicks these guys came in with, so they won’t be given any room to grow into something organic. He worries that will leave them simply as a job squad.
NJPW stars to WWE: Shoemaker talks about the Bullet Club members coming to WWE. He is interested to see how this will play out. He suggests bringing them in to torment Finn Balor not necessarily having them join Finn as friends. Shoemaker says the bigger deal is Shinsuke Nakamura coming over. He says he has done all you can do in NJPW. He says he is talented enough to be a start in the WWE, but he never would have thought the WWE would go after him. Both Shoemaker and Rosenberg agree that it’s a great thing for the WWE to bring over good, talented workers. Shoemaker also brings up rumors of some of the remaining Bullet Club members coming over to WWE as well.
MVP of the week: Rosenberg chooses Charlotte and Ric Flair as his choice this week. He praises the fact that they were able to do their job well enough to get booed quite loudly. He notes how hard it is to be a true heel these days. Shoemaker enjoys that the other Divas aren’t as involved in this storyline because it is making him want to see the other girls more since they are not featured on TV every night. Shoemaker mentions Smackdown moving to USA. Shoemaker chooses Kevin Owens as his MVP. He really enjoyed the stuff with Neville and Dean Ambrose.
Conclusion: Shoemaker presents Rosenberg with some Macho Man shirts as a gift.
Score and Review
Score (8.5): This was a really solid episode of Cheap Heat. There was a nice structure to this show and the hosts moved through the different subjects at a nice, organized pace. I would have liked the hosts to spend a little more time discussing the NJPW talent coming to the WWE, but it didn’t detract from the show quality. Nothing crazy on this show, but a solid hour of entertaining wrestling discussion, which is exactly what I look for in an episode of Cheap Heat.