“Cheap Heat” podcast on Grantland Sports
Hosts: David Shoemaker & Peter Rosenberg
Release Date: February 18, 2016
Recap by Corey Freedman
Top Newsworthy Items
– The hosts discuss Wade Barrett potentially not re-signing with the WWE.
– Shoemaker believes Ambrose-Hunter and Taker-Reigns is more compelling top of the card for WM32.
– Shoemaker thinks that Ambrose winning at Fastlane is far more possible now than it was when they announced the match as he has been featured more than anyone the last few weeks.
– Shoemaker also praises Lucha Underground and encourages people to catch up on their latest season.
Subjects Covered (w/timestamps)
0:00 – Sponsor Ad
0:15 – Introduction
17:30 – Wade Barrett leaving WWE (rumor)
22:50 – Brie Bella retiring
27:55 – Michelle Beadle
32:55 – Raw review
38:45 – Fastlane
50:23 – Cruiserweight Series
53:10 – Lucha Underground
56:00 – Greg reviews the show
1:01:02 – Show ends/sponsor ad
Introduction: The hosts talk briefly about the Westminster Dog Show. They also briefly go back to the Titus O’Neil situation which they talked about last week. Shoemaker agreed with Steve Austin’s take that this should not be an issue about racism in the WWE as there is no merit to those claims. Rosenberg doesn’t believe racism is an issue here, but he does understand why people are quick to bring that into the discussion. They talk about whether Titus will be taken down a tier when he eventually returns. Rosenberg spoke with Mark Henry, who assured him his injury on Raw this week was nothing with long-term ramifications. The hosts talk a bit about the NBA Slam Dunk contest. Rosenberg talks a little about the Grammys, namely Kendrick Lamar and Lady Gaga.
Wade Barrett: Shoemaker brings up the word going around that Barrett is not going to be re-signing with the WWE. He starts by saying that Wade is one of his favorite performers on the current roster. They wonder if he would consider a career in MMA given his background in bare-knuckle fighting. That comment leads to a brief discussion of C.M. Punk’s UFC debut being pushed back. The hosts wonder if Barrett has been injured recently or if the WWE is holding him out of action for a different reason as he has not wrestled very much recently. Shoemaker brings up Drew Galloway and says there could be some really interesting indy matches for Barrett if he decides to leave the WWE.
Brie Bella: The hosts talk about Brie Bella saying she is going to retire soon. Greg brings up a fantasy booking idea that Brie should win the Divas Title on Sunday and then retire the belt so the WWE can bring back the Women’s Championship. Rosenberg argues that the WWE has done a decent job of changing the connotation of the word Diva and it doesn’t really bother him that they don’t change it to Women’s Championship. He would prefer they change it, but he will not be outside the building protesting its usage.
Michelle Beadle: The hosts bring up Beadle seemingly reconciling with the WWE after she denounced the product when Triple H continued to voice support for Floyd Mayweather. Greg explains the interaction with Beadle and Mark Madden (former WCW announcer) on Twitter. This leads the hosts to discuss Manny Pacquiao’s recent comments towards gay people.
Raw Review: Shoemaker starts by noting that in order to preview Fastlane, they may need to spoil parts of Smackdown as that is where certain matches were confirmed. Shoemaker notes that Ambrose received a gigantic pop to start Raw. He also mentions that Owens won the IC because Rosenberg didn’t watch Raw this week. They talk about the Mark Henry/Big E. ending where it seemed like Mark Henry hurt himself. Shoemaker points out that the show is so scripted that when they need to change an ending like that on the fly, the announce team has literally no idea what to say. Shoemaker liked the in-ring confrontation between Charlotte and Brie Bella. Shoemaker praises the A.J. Styles vs. Miz match this week and The Miz’s recent work as a whole.
Fastlane: Shoemaker lays out the card for Fastlane this Sunday. When they mention the New Day-Edge & Christian segment, the hosts all note how awful/unfunny the commercial for the Edge & Christian show on the network is. Shoemaker thinks Ambrose winning on Sunday is more of a possibility than it was when they announced the match. He says Ambrose is basically the star of this match as he has been the focus the last few weeks. Shoemaker wonders about a possible Taker-Reigns being a more interesting usage of Reigns than having him fight Triple H for the Title. Rosenberg brings up the possibility of a Reigns vs. Ambrose match at WM32. In reference to a Hunter0Lesnar main event, Greg wonders if it would be a problem to have two part-timers fighting for the Championship. Rosenberg likes the idea of Reigns vs Ambrose. Shoemaker believes Undertaker vs Kevin Owens is the money match for Taker. They discuss the potential of a John Cena comeback in time for WM32.
Cruiserweight Series: Greg brings up the announced Cruiserweight Series that will air on the WWE Network this summer. He reads the official press release.
Lucha Underground: Shoemaker tells Rosenberg to skip this week’s Raw and spend his time watching the last two weeks of LU. He praises their cinematic backstage scenes. He also talks about how good LU’s recaps are and wonders why the WWE Network doesn’t feature more match/storyline recaps for each of the superstars.
Greg’s review/conclusion: Greg goes back to correct an issue on a previous show, explaining Ric Flair’s relationship, or lack thereof, with the Carolina Panthers. Shoemaker throws out Zack Sabre, Jr.’s name as someone to watch for in the Cruiserweight Series. They try to put a timeline on Wade Barrett’s injury situation. Shoemaker asks fans to tweet the matches they would like to see at WM32 that make sense given the current storylines/situations.
Score & Review
Score (7.0): This was an entertaining episode, but I docked this a few points for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the hosts didn’t really preview Fastlane that much. Shoemaker read through the card, but normally on the pre-PPV show, I look forward to a more detailed breakdown of the card from the Cheap Heat crew. Secondly, Rosenberg didn’t even watch Raw this week. He is not obligated to do so, but I can’t quite get behind recording a wrestling podcast without being caught up on the actual wrestling. Why should the audience care about his opinions if he’s not even watching the show? Regardless, this was still an entertaining episode. They covered a wide range of topics and had a good conversation. I guess I just expect/hope for more out of the crew leading up to a PPV.