Saturday, October 8, 2016

No Mercy Preview

Time for my first preview and predictions of a SmackDown exclusive pay per view. The blue brand has been a little more consistent in terms of storytelling and having some better feuds so far but it has not been without a few hiccups but I'll get into that soon enough my sweet sweet treasures.

Jack Swagger vs Baron Corbin
Sigh...I guess we're gonna continue this feud huh? When I saw Swagger was coming to SmackDown I thought good for him. Then I saw him paired against Baron Corbin and thought huh? Now after 3 weeks of this back and forth my feelings are as followed:

Winner: Baron Corbin (I guess) 

Curt Hawkins vs TBD
I'm actually a fan of Curt Hawkins but this new Chuck Norris-esque gimmick is quite confusing. If he comes out spouting crazy facts but is actually delusional and keeps getting squashed it could be funny. I do think he is too good of a wrestler for that to happen but hey who knows. Frankly I think he could be used as a great addition to the tag team division. I'm sure Joey Mercury can team up with him and still take a bump.

Nikki Bella vs Carmella
That can't be good for the neck.

 So this has not been a bad feud to get Nikki Bella back into the swing of things. Pitting her against Carmella makes story line sense the way it was presented and has turned her into baby face simply by being on the ass end of a few ass kickings. That said, it's been so one sided that I imagine Nikki will go over here and thus begin her inevitable heel turn against Becky Lynch which is essentially a rite of passage for all women wrestlers these days. 
Winner: Nikki Bella

Randy Orton vs Bray Wyatt
A match that on paper should be great. But the build up to this one...woof. Rambling promos from Bray, boring nonsense from Randy, weird ass back stage vignettes, wake me up when this feud is over. And that really is a shame. Randy is one of the best wrestlers of his era and Bray has a charisma and moveset that can't be matched. Given that he's lost his last few pay per views I'll guess Bray Wyatt is going to pick up the win but who the hell knows how they will play this one.
Winner: Bray Wyatt

The Miz vs Dolph Ziggler (Intercontinental Championship or Ziggler's Career)
Thankfully this is not the scheduled match for Sunday.
 This has been surprisingly entertaining. Dolph Ziggler as the plucky under dog is a role he can play very well given his ability to make anyone look great in the ring. As for the Miz...who could have predicted that I would be excited to see the Miz on tv ever really. And the ether he dropped on Daniel Bryan a few months back? My Lord. He has been the top heel on SmackDown. This may shock some people but I'm guessing the Miz's reign continues and Dolph returns in a few months repackaged with a new gimmick.
Winner: The Miz 

Heath Slater and Rhyno vs The Usos (tag Team Championship)
You guys deserve all the cheese and crackers.
First off let me say I am extremely shocked that I am saying this but I am loving Heath Slater and Rhyno. They play off each other so well and I think it's amazing that Heath Slater after getting squashed for years is finally getting his shine. That said the evil Usos are just too damn hot to not get the title on them and it pains me to say this but having American Alpha chase them for the title is a much more compelling story line. 
Winner: The Usos

Alexa Bliss vs Becky Lynch (SmackDown Women's Championship)
Now this is going to be an entertaining match. From a technical stand point few can hang with Becky Lynch. And I dare say she throws possibly the best t-bone suplex male or female in the WWE. 
Alexa Bliss in her new Harley Quinn inspired gimmick is close to moving to 3rd string bae behind Bayley (Sasha Banks will always be # 1) and has the perfect mannerisms of a disgusted heel. Because the title is so new and Alexa is still not quite there I think Becky wins and sets herself up for a heel turn from Nikki Bella.
Winner: Becky Lynch

John Cena vs Dean Ambrose vs AJ Styles

I have never been a fan of John Cena. In the ring the guy is dynamite, but his personality was just too cheesy and corny. Now he is being this kind of shitty guy while still being a face and it kind of works. Dean Ambrose has gone from being this super wacky guy to deliriously unhinged in the same mold as Brian Pillman which works for me as well.
Please break the skull mask from Japan out.
As for the face that runs the place AJ Styles...he has been maybe the best wrestler in the world since leaving TNA. I expect this to be the match of the night in all honesty.  I expect AJ Styles to keep the title as he is just too on fire currently and has never been more popular. 
Winner: AJ Styles 

Well there you have it wrestling fans, surely by the law of averages all of these can't be wrong.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Martin Luther King, Jr. Is Not A Racial Pokemon

I’m sure I’m not the first person who has noticed this, but whenever the topic of Black Lives Matter or more accurately whenever some black people protest (because Black Lives Matter is an organization, not all black people who protest or active in the community is a member of said organization but that’s another story) you inevitably will hear this talking point. “Martin Luther King Jr. would have…” This my friends drives me crazy for more than a few reasons that I will gladly list it for you. 

1. MLK ain't my daddy. 
One of my favorite podcasts is Negroes With A Podcast. In one of the episodes one of the hosts Vann Newkirk, a really dope writer from the Atlantic, made a great off the cuff remark that stuck with me. "MLK ain't my daddy." Why is it that he is thrown in to every black person's face when the topic of race is discussed? This is by no means any shade to Dr. King or his legacy but he was a man and it is possible to disagree with his opinion.

2. The masses didn't like MLK like they do now.
Today he is the universally beloved civil rights leader of yore. At the time he was reviled by opponents of equal rights and see as a trouble maker who was making too much noise. He was constantly under surveillance by the F.B.I. and in one particularly disturbing correspondence vaguely urged to kill himself. Seriously.

3. He protested "the right way." 

People like to talk about MLK and his acts of protest as if they were well received and well respected by those he was trying to reach. That could not be further from truth. All those claiming to want people to do it the right way bring up his marches and non violent ways yet constantly fail to bring up how he was physically attacked, spit on, and eventually assassinated.

4. Using one line from the "I Have A Dream" speech ignoring all of his other works.
Whenever racial strife or speaking of inequality you inevitable will be hit with a line from the "I Have A Dream Speech."
Not the only speech he ever gave.
 Undoubtedly that is one of the greatest speeches ever, but Dr. King said so much more. For people who question how someone can riot in their own neighborhood King once said: "It is not enough for me to stand before you tonight and condemn riots. It would be morally irresponsible for me to do that without, at the same time, condemning the contingent, intolerable conditions that exist in our society. These conditions are the things that cause individuals to feel that they have no other alternative than to engage in violent rebellions to get attention. And I must say tonight that a riot is the language of the unheard." The point is situations are nuanced, there isn't a single quote from King or anyone for that matter that can be used as a band aid on any situation.

Dr. King is a hero of mine, hell he should be a hero of all of ours but to trot him out only to try and shut people of color up is quite stupid. Read more than just the "I Have A Dream" speech and for God's sake listen when people are telling you their experiences.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Clash of Champions Preview 2016

As you all may have surmised, young Puma here is a massive fan of the professional wrestling. I could care less that people call it immature or will yell it’s fake. I. Don’t. Care. Now that we got that out the way, this Sunday there is a little pay-per-view this Sunday and I have decided to give you a little bit of my predictions. 

Kicking off Clash of Champions we have:
Alicia Fox vs. Nia Jax:
This is going to be a bloodbath. Nia Jax is going to beat Alicia Fox (who is woefully underrated). I mean I get it; you have to build up Nia Jax as a monster heel but how about feeding her more local talent. The women’s roster is a little thin so Foxy is going to have to be the one to take this beat-down.
Winner: Nia Jax

T.J. Perkins vs THE Brian Kendrick (Cruiserweight Championship):
TJ Perkins shocked everyone and won the inaugural Cruiserweight Classic and is thus our Champion of the division. Kendrick is the returning wily vet willing to do anything to keep his run alive. I would love to pick Kendrick as the dabbing Perkins while a very good wrestler just kind of annoys me but it’s too early to have a title change to a newly minted belt. So Perkins will win this. As a side-note, the true star of this division is going to be Cedric Alexander.
Holy crap is this guy good.
Winner: TJ Perkins

Cesaro vs Sheamus:
In the best of seven series where the winner gets a title shot we are currently tied at three wins each. In the ring Sheamus is always going to give you a solid match, his personality annoys the crap out of you but damn it I guess that's what a good heel does. Cesaro who should be a world champion has been accused of not having personality but no one can do the things the Swiss Superman does. If they are smart Cesaro comes out on top because a feud with him and either Kevin Owens or Rusev would be gold. 
Winner: Cesaro

Rusev vs Roman Reigns (United States Championship)
After his suspension for PEDs Reigns has been on a pretty good streak wrestling wise. While the story given to these two hasn't been as good as it should be, in ring (not counting the SummerSlam debacle) has been outstanding. I think the title stays on Rusev as Reigns will be feuding elsewhere in my opinion and doesn't need the United States title. I expect Reigns to win via disqualification. He doesn't take a clean pin and Rusev looks strong and protects the title.

Sami Zayn vs Chris Jericho:
They bear a striking resemblance...
Sami Zayn who appears to have a striking resemblance to former Ring of Honor wrestler El Generico is one of the most astonishing wrestlers on the roster. Seriously look up his match with Shinuske Nakamura from earlier this year or against Cesaro on NXT and you 'll see the hype. Heel Chris Jericho may be one of my favorite things on the face of the earth. This one low key could steal the show. I expect Zayn to win and beat Kevin Owens' best friend with a Helluva Kick.
Winner: Sami Zayn 

Charlotte vs Sasha Banks vs Bayley (Women's Championship)
This may be one of the best women's matches in modern history. It certainly has the potential to be. Charlotte is probably the second best heel on the entire roster, Sasha Banks is bae (sorry Kari) and  there may not be a better babyface and backup bae than Bayley.
Destined to do this forever.
If Zayn-Jericho doesn't steal the show then this one definitely will. All three are at the top of their game but I expect Charlotte to walk away with the title through shenanigans from Dana Brooke her enforcer in training (shout out to the crew at Wrasslecast, one of my favorite wrestling podcasts.) 
Winner: Charlotte

Gallows and Anderson vs The New Day (Tag Team Championship) 
I love Gallows and Anderson from their days in New Japan as part of the Bullet Club but I will admit that since coming to the WWE have lost quite a bit of steam. After an ill fated attempt at using comedy as a part of their act it appears they are going to be rebooted as a serious bad ass duo which works for them. The New Day are amazing, but they have held the title over a year and frankly they are so hot with the crowds they could afford to lose the title and it will allow them to chase some singles titles as a faction.  As a side-note seriously look up any podcast Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson are on, those two are HILARIOUS.
Winner: Gallows and Anderson

Seth Rollins vs Kevin Owens (Universal Championship)
As the great Keith Jackson would say....WHOA NELLY! Seth Rollins who is in the midst of becoming a great babyface and will probably face Triple H at Wrestlemania if things keep up the they currently are going against the best heel in the game and one of my favorites Kevin Owens.
What a dick.
These two will definitely put on a main event worthy match, my only concern is that Owens may get lost in the shuffle in this match as I expect Triple H to make an appearance and further the storyline with Seth Rollin. But with his power and athleticism I am choosing the Kevin Owens Show to be the victor with a pop up powerbomb and give us more moments of pure awesomeness.

Never change K.O.

Well there you go, my predictions which if my track record is any indication most will be wrong. Enjoy the show!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Random Thoughts by the Puma of Chocolate Descent

The world has not ceased being a flaming garbage pile in recent weeks so young Puma has decided to hit you with just a few random thoughts that have inhabited my mind since the last time we last met through the wonderful medium of blogging.  

*I’ve debated writing on the subject of Colin Kaepernick and his decision to protest by sitting or kneeling through the national anthem. And after weeks of hot takes and ridiculous memes I guess I’ll have to throw my takes in as well.  If you want to stand and salute during the national anthem, go for it. As for me, I have not a single problem with Kap deciding to make a statement and sitting.
First of all, to the people who ask “what is he doing to make it better?”

Well I must ask you, have you tried listening to the man? Because he’s been pretty damn clear on what he is personally doing.  Oh you hadn’t heard? Well why don’t you have a look. It also seems weird that people think he is doing this for attention. Seriously scroll his mentions right now and ask yourself who would willingly welcome that kind of attention. There are easier ways to get just random attention. Isn’t Taylor Swift single? Date her and have an entire album written about you.

*Another thing I'm confused with the NFL is the message they are sending.
This is worth a fine? Really?
All I have heard in regards to Kap is how he should be quiet and happy he is paid handsomely to play a game. Then you get a guy like Antonio Brown who is happy to play a game, scores a touch down and celebrates, then gets fined. Pick a side guys. 

*After reading some of the leaked emails from Colin Powell I realize I have a lot in common with the four star general. We are both tremendous talkers of shit and young Puma tips his cap to him.
Next stop: The Playa Hater's Ball!
*The NFL season has begun anew and while I love the Bears and the sport in general it's admittedly getting harder to watch. Not because "guys were tougher" in my day kind of reason. Knowing what we know about CTE and it's effect on the brain seeing a game like last week's Carolina-Denver match up where Cam Newton took numerous blows to the head was quite unsettling.

*Chance the Rapper is close to taking a spot in my heart usually reserved for the best of the best.
Not only is his music dope (Although I prefer Acid Rap to Coloring Book, don't fight me) he currently is planning to register people to vote at his concerts. Add that to the fact he is buying tickets from scalpers to ensure no one coming to a show of his is price gouged he is a young guy you definitely have to respect.

*In part 3,625 of my ongoing list of why the NCAA is trash. Charleston Southern recently suspended 32 players. Why you may ask? Because they used leftover money from from their book allowance to buy school supplies. That's right, school supplies. After being advised to use the money or lose it the kids bought things out of the bookstore and they get punished? So they get paid in education but when they buy things to help with said education they get punished? Meanwhile the head coach makes over 6 figures. Good job NCAA.

Well that's all I got for now. I'm gonna go eat some buffalo wings with my wife. Ya'll be easy. 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Summer Nights Playlist...As Presented by The Puma of Chocolate Persuasion

In my continuing effort to siphon off any residual cool which is constantly being emitted from our current president Barack Obama, I too have decided to make a summer time playlist of music that I, think that you all should be listening to. Because I last looked at his night time list and let's be honest it's more fun to compile a list of slow jams for a fella like myself, I’ll give you some of the best slow jams to play during your summer nights.  

1. Good Times- Sam Cooke
A little uptempo beginning to the evening. Also fun fact, young Puma danced to this at his wedding.

2. Be Here- Raphael Saadiq
If I was going to cheat this entire album could have been this summer night list. Instant Vintage is to me a perfect album from top to bottom. This juts happens to be the smoothest of the tracks.
3. Pretty Wings- Maxwell
This had to be added I mean the name of the album is BLACKsummersnight. This song is classic Maxwell smoothness and a perfect accompaniment to the vibe of a slow jam compilation.

4. Beauty- Dru Hill

Ah yes, the shy guy anthem from high school. Quite smooth.

5. Cupid- 112 

Possibly my favorite of this group's pretty good streak in the early aughts. 
6. Never Gonna Give You Up- The Black Keys

 Shout out to the homie Wee Man for introducing the Black Keys into my life with this jam.
7. Moneygrabber- Fitz and the Tantrums

8. Hey Lover- L.L. Cool J

9. Blame It On The Boogie- The Jacksons

10. Sun Comes Up- John Legend

11. The Panties- Mos Def

12. Break You Off- The Roots
I have seen the Roots about 15 times and I lose my shit whenever this is played. Maybe not the summer night mood you're going for a but a brother can't help himself.

13. In The Mood- Talib Kweli

14. Love Language- Reflection Eternal

15. Like A Star- Corrine Bailey Rae

Well there you have it, my list biting Obama's list. Its cool if you think my list is better.