WWE SummerSlam 2022 (Review)

Paul Levesque’s body of work in NXT suggested his creative style was more pro wrestling than sports entertainment. That couldn’t have been further from the truth, as he struck the perfect balance on Saturday to produce a SummerSlam for the ages.

Roman Reigns closing out the show #AndStill champion could signify the shroud of Vince McMahon looming over the new era of WWE. One could be forgiven for conjuring such an idea. After all, wrestling has embedded the art of “the worfans’ minds of fans everywhere.

Bianca Belair’s victory over Becky Lynch, followed by Bayley’s reemergence along with Io Shirai and Dakota Kai’s introduction to the main roster, set a pronounced pace and tone to open the show.

It was a statement that things are going to be different.

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Quick WWE SummerSlam 2022 Predictions

Image credit: WWE

The multiverse of madness shifted tonight’s SummerSlam to the end of July instead of its usual spot on the calendar at the end of August. Nissan Stadium in Nashville is the site of what was just another edition of WWE’s “biggest party of the summer.” Now it will be the company’s first major event without Vince McMahon.

Paul “Triple H” Levesque is officially the head of creative, and we’ll see how he plays the game with our viewing pleasure. Do you see what I did there? “How well he plays the game?” Because he’s called “The Ga….”

Here are my quick SummerSlam predictions!

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Trios Championship Coming Soon to AEW

Image Credit: AEW

Depending on who you are, the overflow of championship gold in AEW was either praised or skewered before the promotion introduced the Trio’s Title’s Wednesday on Dynamite. While another prize risks diluting all of the AEW titles, Tony Khan had the belts made some time ago, meaning their inclusion in the all elite ranks was inevitable.

But is it a good idea?

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Thoughts on ROH Death Before Dishonor

Lowell, MA, added another historical event to its pro wrestling resume with the first full-on presentation of Tony Khan’s Ring of Honor with Death Before Dishonor. Many wondered what match would close out the show.

Would it be the World Championship or the Tag Team Championship?

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Vince McMahon Retires from WWE

Unless he contributed to this week’s episode of NXT, Raw on Monday was the last piece of pro wrestling content Vince McMahon will ever create. 

July 22, 2022, will be a day-long remember when the biggest announcement in the history of the industry occured. At 4:05 PM Friday, Vince McMahon announced his retirement from WWE on Twitter.

The company followed up with a full statement issued by McMahon confirming his complete retirement from WWE, including the head of creative. Stephanie McMahon and Nick Kahn will assume the role as the new co-CEOs of the company.

We’re also one week away from SummerSlam.

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The Problem with AEW

All Elite Wrestling has become a viable pro wrestling alternative. However, the Jacksonville-based promotion receives as much adoring praise as it does staunch criticism. AEW booking the newest WWE release, Cole Karter, on Dynamite this week is the latest example of the promotion’s biggest problem.

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Jeff Jarrett is the Special Guest Referee at SummerSlam

“Are you serious?” I blurted out loud when Jeff Jarrett was announced as the special guest referee for Usos/Street Profits Tag Team Title match at SummerSlam on July 30th.

“What’s wrong?” my wife asked with heartfelt concern. She rolled her eyes and quickly returned to her book after telling her, “It’s a wrestling thing.”

WWE has dipped into the guest referee well for the 9th time in SummerSlam history. Usos and Profits have great matches against each other. However, some complained about another outing between the two teams after the shoulder controversy at Money in the Bank.

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Liv Morgan: A Different Type of Enigma

Liv Morgan has a new belt strapped around her waist. Eleven days ago, she won the Women’s Money in the Bank ladder match and later in the night cashed in the briefcase on a wounded Ronda Rousey to become the SmackDown Women’s Champion. It was quite the shocker that most didn’t see coming.

Another title change saw Theory lose the U.S. Title to Bobby Lashley. But he turned his bad luck around as he was inexplicably entered into, and won the Men’s Money in the Bank ladder match.

Two surprise moments occurred. One was damned with faint praise, while fans and wrestlers celebrated the other. Liv Morgan’s win and successful cash-in culminated in a hard-fought journey with a happy ending many feared was improbable.

Liv Morgan is a different type of enigma. Morgan is not the most polished wrestler, but she’s not bad enough to write off either. Online enthusiasts celebrate her to a degree usually reserved for top-level in-ring performers.

So, what makes her different?

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Vince McMahon Paid 4 Women over $12 Million in Hush Money

Here we go again. 

The Wall Street Journal discovered more hush-money payments made by Vince McMahon in excess of $12 million over 16 years to four women who worked for WWE. The former paralegal, the subject of the Wall Street Journal’s initial report on McMahon’s sexual misconduct is included.

Three more women and over $9 million in addition to the $3 million WSJ reported on June 17. A $7.5 million settlement was reached with a former WWE wrestler who claimed McMahon “coerced her into giving him oral sex and then demoted her and, ultimately, declined to renew her contract in 2005 after she resisted further sexual encounters, according to people familiar with the matter.”

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Lucha VaVOOM announces Summer Sabotage (7/29)

Los Angeles’ longest-running, most celebrated variety show returns for one night only

Friday, July 29th at The Mayan Theatre in downtown Los Angeles

Featuring world-class Mexican masked wrestling, burlesque, comedy, music, and more

Summer Sabotage is also set to feature a unique collaboration with Sony Pictures’

new upcoming original action thriller, “BULLET TRAIN”

Tickets on sale now

Los Angeles, CA (July 6, 2022)─Los Angeles’ longest-running, most celebrated variety show, where authentic Mexican masked wrestling, burlesque, and comedy collide, is returning with Lucha VaVOOM Summer Sabotage on Friday, July 29th at their historic home venue, The Mayan Theatre (1038 S Hill St.), in downtown Los Angeles. Tickets for this 21+ event are on sale now for $45.00‒$90.00 at TicketWeb.com.

Celebrating their 20th anniversary this August 22ndLucha VaVOOM (LVV) has been wowing audiences across the globe with their glam/slam extravaganzas for two decades. In February, LVV hosted their first live event since 2019 due to the coronavirus, selling out their Valentine’s engagement, followed by two blowout nights in May to celebrate 11 years of Cinco de Mayo craziness. From Los Angeles to Tokyo, across the U.S. and Canada, and all the way to Australia, people go crazy for this perfect combination of world-class, professional lucha libre-style wrestling interspersed with insane, high-octane burlesque performances, death-defying aerial acts, comedy, music, lowriders, tequila, tamales, and more ─ all adding up to one unforgettable night.

Summer Sabotage’s confirmed wrestling lineup includes fan favorites Li’l Cholo and Magno “The Man Mountain” Rudo, along with mini superstar wrestler and one of Mexico’s most beloved fighters Microman (as seen on ESPNCBS NewsThe Telegraph and Daily Mail), Dragon LeeDralisticoTaya Valkyrie (four-time Reina de Reinas champion and former WWE superstar), Dama Fina (former LVV champion), Matt ClassicMini Matt Classic, Los Crazy ChickensDr. Maldad, Chupacabra, ZyraJohnnie Robbie, and Los SEXI Mexi’s (Ave Rex and Sonico).

Burlesque dancers and aerialists confirmed includes Raquel Reed (burlesque dancer from Absinthe in Las Vegas), Audrey Deluxe (burlesque artist, game-player, fantasy maker, and shimmy shaker), Veronica Yune (stunning daredevil aerialist who will be swooping down from above and stealing hearts), and Viva La Glam (San Francisco-based performer specializing in unique and dangerous acts, such as an aerial dance on chains, with metal grinding in the air, to create a magnificent display of shooting sparks as she spins at death defying heights).

Plus, comedian host Blaine Capatch will be delivering insanely off-the-cuff commentary both nights. 

Photo credit: David Chi
Photo credit: Safi Alia Shabaik

Summer Sabotage will also feature a unique collaboration with Sony Pictures’ new upcoming original action thriller film, Bullet Train, out only in theaters on August 5th. In Bullet Train, Brad Pitt stars as Ladybug, an unlucky assassin determined to do his job peacefully after one too many gigs gone off the rails.

Fate, however, may have other plans, as Ladybug’s latest mission puts him on a collision course with lethal adversaries from around the globe – all with connected, yet conflicting, objectives – on the world’s fastest train…and he’s got to figure out how to get off.

From the director of Deadpool 2David Leitch, the end of the line is only the beginning in a wild, non-stop thrill ride through modern-day Japan. With a screenplay by Zak Olkewicz based on the book by Kotaro Isaka, the film also stars Joey KingAaron Taylor-JohnsonBrian Tyree HenryAndrew KojiHiroyuki SanadaMichael ShannonBenito A Martínez Ocasio (Puerto Rican artist known as Bad Bunny, who is also a huge wrestling fan) and Sandra Bullock.

wrestlerinspired by Bad Bunny’s “The Wolf”-character from the film, will be a part of the second match of the night at Summer Sabotage. Additionallythe dangerously cute and mysterious mascot Momomon will also make a special appearance at the event, plus fans in attendance will get to see the film’s trailer, special footage, and more! 

About Lucha VaVOOM:

For almost 20 years, Lucha VaVOOM (LVV) has been delivering arguably the most electrifying show on earth with a mind-blowing mix of Mexican masked wrestling, burlesque, and comedy. Founded in Los Angeles in 2002 by Rita D’Albert and Liz Fairbairn, LVV — voted Los Angeles’ “Best Burlesque Show” by LA Weekly in 2012 and 2013 — is good vs. evil played out in quick, exhibition-style, one-fall lucha libre matches for maximum enjoyment and action.

LVV has created a Los Angeles tradition: from the low rider car parade escorting in performers as the crowd enters the iconic Mayan Theatre, to the local luminaries it attracts (Drew Carey, Jack Black, and more have sat in), to burlesque (which was revived in Los Angeles), to lucha libre, where masked heroic wrestlers, in character-driven style, flip, fly, and amaze.

It all comes together to make for one fun, surreal, glam-bam spectacle of raucous entertainment. You could say it’s a wrestling show for people that don’t like wrestling (and those that do). Says the Los Angeles Times, “Far-out flamboyance always prevails at Lucha VaVOOM, a spectacle of Mexican freestyle wrestling with an L.A. twist.”

For more info, visit LuchaVaVOOM.com and follow on FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTube, and TikTok.

“…no one that puts on a better lucha libre show than the folks at Lucha VaVOOM. Far wackier and wilder than most professional wrestling…Lucha VaVOOM lets its freak flag fly…”

 Nerdist