Cheap Heat on Grantland Sports
Hosts: David Shoemaker & Peter Rosenberg
Release Date: January 14, 2016
Recap by Corey Freedman
Top Newsworthy Items
– The hosts discuss the impact of John Cena’s injury on WM32 plans.
– Shoemaker praises the debut of Mauro Ranallo on the Smackdown commentary team.
– The hosts talk potential WM32 match-ups and plans given the realistic available talent.
– Daniel Bryan is discussed in relation to his health and potential return/release.
Subjects Covered (w/timestamps)
0:00 – Introduction
6:30 – John Cena’s injury/WM32 plans
15:25 – Mauro Ranallo on Smackdown
16:49 – RAW
20:45 – SOTU/Presidents and wrestling
27:25 – Kalisto
31:10 – Sting in the WWE HOF
32:35 – Daniel Bryan
36:25 – WM32 card
53:40 – Sunny selling HOF ring
57:00 – Nakamura
58:00 – Hardcore Holly spaceman gimmick
58:35 – Stat Guy Greg reviews the show/conclusion
Introduction: Stat Guy Greg is back this week. He watched the Owen Hart DVD on vacation, and one thing he learned from the DVD was that Owen had a WCW run early in his career. They talk about following a sport/entertainment form and not always knowing everything about that thing.
Cena injury/WM32 plans: Shoemaker starts by noting that when Seth Rollins got hurt, it made him realize how important he was to the show. That feeling was even more amplified when he heard Cena had gotten hurt. He talks about having no idea what they are going to do for WM32. The hosts talk about how Cena can recover from an injury faster than seemingly anyone else on the planet. They talk about his recent tweet that this injury “might be a long one.” The hosts discuss how sad/disappointed Cena must be to not be able to participate in the biggest WM of all-time.
The lack of people available for WM32 leads to a brief aside about the Bullet Club. Rosenberg doesn’t believe they are popular enough in the U.S. to make a huge impact on WM this year. The hosts also discuss the potential for Samoa Joe to be involved in WM this year. They all agree he is more likely to play a big role this year than the Bullet Club (or its members). Greg wonders if the WWE Network launching in Japan would have an affect on their plans to use members of the Bullet Club or Shinsuke Nakamura. Rosenberg wonders if the Network launching there will really alter its popularity in Japan, as he believes people in Japan would have been interested in WWE already. Shoemaker asks if the WWE spreading to different countries will lead to an increased emphasis on the in-ring product because some of the entertainment stuff doesn’t translate to different languages/cultures.
Mauro Ranallo: Shoemaker praises Ranallo’s debut on Smackdown. He says it wasn’t necessarily like Jim Nantz calling a wrestling match, but it was a very good change of pace. He does comment, though, that Ranallo has to lower the volume of his voice sometimes.
Raw: Shoemaker says that he watched Raw live this week and couldn’t resist the urge to change the channel each time there was a commercial break. Rosenberg notes that he would like it if Ryback was part of the Social Outcasts. Shoemaker says he likes a potential Big Show/Ryback tag team. He jokes about the Social Outcasts beating the team of Jack Swagger, Zack Ryder, Goldust, and Damien Sandow on Smackdown this week. Rosenberg jokes that the Social Outcasts should use Outkast’s “Bombs over Baghdad” as their theme song. They have an aside comparing the State of the Union address to a wrestling promo. Rosenberg tries to figure out which former Presidents were heels or faces.
SOTU/POTUS and wrestling: The hosts joke about the SOTU sounding sometimes like a wrestling promo. They also try to figure out which former Presidents would have been faces and which would have been heels. Rosenberg lists Obama as a face, and Shoemaker compares Bush to Greg Gagne (related to someone we like, but then we realize he stinks). Shoemaker says Clinton is the HBK of presidents. Shoemaker asks which wrestler would make the best president. Naturally the conversation turns to Jesse Ventura. Some names they suggest include Cena, The Rock, and Bret Hart in Canada.
Kalisto: Greg chooses Kalisto as his MVP of the week for winning the U.S. Title. Rosenberg wonders if there is anything more Rey Mysterio adjace than Kalisto?
Sting/HOF: Shoemaker wonders if Sting will be the headliner or if there are going to be other people announced with him. They also wonder if Sting is healthy enough to wrestle anymore.
Daniel Bryan: The hosts bring up the rumor that WWE may be releasing Daniel Bryan in the coming days. They do not think it sounds like the most credible rumor. Shoemaker asks, knowing what we know about Bryan’s health to this point, would you be comfortable watching him wrestle? Rosenberg responds that if he has been cleared by doctors and is comfortable himself, as long as he was smart in the ring, he would be fine with it.
WM32 card/injuries: Shoemaker starts by asking if there are any current storyline that could be headed for WM? They discuss the possibility of having two Divas matches. They have a brief aside about potential injuries for Paige and Sasha Banks. They talk a bit more about some of the other injuries plaguing the WWE. They talk about potential people the WWE could bring back to fill the show such as Jeff Hardy, Jeff Jarrett, Matt Hardy, Kurt Angle, MVP, Shelton Benjamin, Carlito, Bobby Lashley, and Batista.
They have a brief aside about wrestling-related dreams. Shoemaker talks about having a recurring nightmare about being a part of a tag team. Shoemaker goes through the realistic list of potential wrestlers available for WM32. The hosts debate whether or not the Rock is going to wrestle this year. Shoemaker doesn’t seem to think he is going to wrestle, but imagines that the WWE is begging him to. They throw around some potential matchups. Shoemaker discusses the potential of a Kane-Taker match, and he doesn’t think that would really catch on with the mainstream crowd. Rosenberg remarks how this was supposed to be the biggest WM ever, and that is a hard bar to reach with all of these injuries. Rosenberg wonders if they will ever pull the trigger on bringing Goldberg back. Shoemaker feels like it might already be too late to bring too many people into the fold as there wouldn’t be a lot of time to develop the storylines.
Sunny selling HOF ring: Shoemaker brings up Sunny selling her Hall of Fame ring on eBay. The hosts agree that someone selling their ring probably isn’t a good sign for that person. They joke about buying the ring themselves.
Nakamura: Stat Guy Greg brings up Shinsuke Nakamura dropping his IC Title in Japan this week. Shoemaker jokes that the WWE should offer to give Nakamura back to NJPW for a few months in exchange for the rights to the Bullet Club name.
Hardcore Holly: Shoemaker brings up a story from Reddit suggesting that WWE once considered Holly having a spaceman gimmick including a sidekick that was a monkey. They were going to call him Spacecore Holly.
Stat Guy Greg/Conclusion: Greg corrects some of the errors from the show. He wishes Goldberg a Happy Birthday for his recent birthday. The hosts discuss the possibility of Vince wrestling at this WM. Rosenberg says he doesn’t think Vince would look convincing enough to be apart of a match given his age. Shoemaker jokes about Roman Reigns fighting the entire McMahon family at WM, including the family dog. Rosenberg says that he hated Jericho’s promo last week on Raw. They talk about his awful clothing choices in recent weeks. Rosenberg says that his promo last week felt so trite as he was just trying to fit as many of his catchphrases into a promo at once. They talk a bit about the NFL Playoffs. They debate the use of the term Redskins to close out.
Score and Review
Score (8.0): Overall, I thought this was a really entertaining episode. Not a ton of news to cover in the world of wrestling this week, and I thought the hosts did a good job touching on the relevant issues and mixing in some entertaining discussions. As is often the case, I found a couple of the digressions unnecessary (the NFL talk doesn’t interest me at all), but this was still a good episode of Cheap Heat. I enjoyed the discussions surrounding WM32 plans and think this would be a good listen for anyone that is a fan of Cheap Heat.