By John Moore
WWE Talking Smack
Aired June 6, 2017 on the WWE Network
-Renee Young and Shane McMahon checked in from the WWE Talking Smack set. Shane joked about Renee always being the one that starts off the show. Renee pointed out that Shane had a really busy night in making matches and such.
-Renee talked about Kevin Owens vs. Shinsuke Nakamura being a dream match (even though Kevin Steen faced him a few years ago – they acknowledged Nakamura vs. Prince Devitt/Finn Balor in the past already so it’s not even the first time Nakamura has faced someone who changed their name in WWE). Renee said Baron Corbin was also busy tonight in taking out people. They recapped the moment Corbin gave Nakamura End of Days. Shane was impressed that Corbin hit the move on a tall opponent in Nakamura. Renee wondered if Corbin has proved he deserves a main event slot. Shane said Corbin is in a main event slot and it’s time to show what he can do.
-Mojo Rawley was the first guest on Talking Smack. Shane completed his earlier thought in saying that Corbin’s key to winning Money in the Bank is hitting his End of Days finisher. Renee welcomed Mojo to the show. Mojo opened up by thanking Shane for the opportunity earlier. Shane and Renee pointed out that Mojo looked good tonight. Renee wanted Mojo’s thoughts on things not going in his favor. Renee noted that there were ups and downs for Mojo since WrestleMania.
-Mojo thanked Shane again and said he couldn’t get the job done. He said he had to refocus/regroup by going back to the drawing board. Renee asked Mojo if the Singh Brothers were the ultimate reason behind his loss. Mojo said you just have to take the brothers into account in your scouting report of Jinder in being ready for the distractions. Mojo said he gave his hats off to Jinder and pointed out that Jinder is a completely different person from the person he beat several times before the number one contenders match. Mojo said Jinder is much meaner and more aggressive with the strength of a nation behind him; one of the biggest nations.
-Mojo acknowledged that he couldn’t get the job done tonight but said that the worst thing you can do after a loss is doubt yourself after the loss by reevaluating too much. Mojo said you shouldn’t lose your mojo. Mojo said you have to take one step back to move two steps forward. Mojo said he has to be hit in the face sometimes with his history. Mojo said that breaks you out of being complacent. Mojo said he likes that he’ll be able to bounce back. Mojo said it’s going to be a lot of sleepless nights studying tape.
-Shane said Mojo manned up and wanted a handshake. Renee wondered if Mojo should take a page out of Jinder’s book to reach the same success. Mojo said no because you have to hang your hat on what got you here with all the top worldwide talent in the locker room. Mojo said he knows about his shortcomings but he has a lot of strengths as well. Mojo said he won at WrestleMania and he can’t let one loss change who he is. Mojo said this is life. Mojo said this is staying hyped. Mojo said he is really upset he lost over blowing an opportunity given to him. Mojo said he’s going to beat himself up for a while to inspire him. Mojo said changes are coming, but only within the realm of who Mojo Rawley is. Shane McMahon wished Mojo well on his way out and complemented Mojo for his physical improvements in not getting gassed in his match.
John’s Thoughts: Calm Mojo is the best Mojo. I’m personally afraid that WWE might abruptly elevate Mojo in a similar way that they elevated Jinder if they ever decide to move into the Arabic market; thus bypassing Sami Zayn. That’s just a personal fear though in that I feel that Mojo Rawley is a really good babyface when calm and not a parody of Gronk. He’s just still a bit clumsy in the ring at times. Where he shines is in his self-reflection as well as connecting with the young audience in a positive way. WWE instead has showcased a less stellar side of Mojo do to wanting to exploit his legit connection to the Gronkowski family.
-Renee liked seeing Mojo come on air with that attitude by taking his loss like a man as opposed to complaining. They moved on to talking about New Day and Colons. Shane thought the Colons looked good. Renee said she thinks the Colons looked good too in a great tag team division. Renee said New Day and the Usos were the two best tag teams in WWE.
-Renee hyped Shane McMahon’s recent appearance on the Stone Cold Podcast. Shane acknowledge that he was down in LA recording the podcast where they went through memory lane at Stone Cold’s personal studio.
-Lana walked on set as the next interview. Lana thanked Shane for giving her a championship match at Money in the Bank. Lana said Naomi was brave but she should be careful what she wishes for. Lana said she’s going to snatch Naomi bald and snatch her title in reference to Naomi saying she’ll snatch Lana bald. Lana said she acknowledges Naomi’s athleticism. She said she’s been watching Naomi and all of the women. Lana said she’s going to be the first “Ravishing Women’s Champion”.
-Renee asked Lana about her preparations for facing the most athletic woman in WWE in Naomi. Lana said she’s been training. Lana also said that Naomi might be one of the most athletic people in WWE male or female. Lana said she’s nervous a bit, but she’s sought out the best training and coaches. Lana said Naomi has never faced anyone like her. Lana called all the women on Smackdown by their nicknames and said no one was ravishing.
-Renee said we got to see a more devious side of Lana when she tripped Naomi. Lana said she doesn’t understand Renee’s usage of the word “tactics” when describing what she did on Smackdown earlier. Shane said Lana got in Naomi’s head so much that it was Naomi who demanded the match against Lana. Shane said he stands by his point from earlier where he thinks Lana doesn’t deserve to be in the Women’s Money in the Bank Match due to not earning anything. Shane said he wishes Lana well in her match against Naomi. Renee had a sly and coy facial expression.
-Lana said Shane was being naive. Lana said she was going to prove Shane wrong and this was the land of opportunity. Lana said she grew up in a “small and pathetic village” in Russia. Lana said it was pathetic because ten thousand people lived in her village and she was told she would never amount to anything or escape her village. Lana said she crossed the ocean and to look at her now. Lana said people told her all her life that she wasn’t athletic or will never be a star. Lana said she respects Shane and Renee’s opinion but she will prove them and the doubters wrong.
-Lana said she’s the most ravishing superstar in WWE of all time. She said she’s going to make history and the brand. She said she was taking Smackdown to new elevations. She said she’s excited to take Shane and Renee to new levels. She then said “#Blessed”. Renee congratulated Lana on getting a title shot as she ended the interview with Lana.
-Lana wondered how Shane thought Lana would do in a title match that Shane gave her when Shane said Lana didn’t deserve to be in the Money in the Bank. Shane reiterated that it was Naomi who gave Lana the title shot, not Shane. Shane said he’s not discounting Lana’s talent or hard work. Shane wondered if it was a women thing for not allowing him to finish his thoughts. Renee joked about Shane cutting Renee off last week. Shane said he didn’t realize and he feels bad for cutting off Renee. Shane said Lana doesn’t deserve the opportunity at a title shot because there are a lot of other women deserving of the title shot and they are all in the Money in the Bank match.
-Renee brought up the smart idea of possibly cashing in Money in the Bank on [the inexperienced] Lana if she wins the Women’s Championship. Shane said it could be ravishing.
-Renee asked Shane about what New Day gave to Tyler Breeze in the Fashion Files segment. Renee said she thinks it was a man romper. Renee asked Shane if he wore a romper.
-AJ Styles walked in on the man romper discussion. AJ said he and Shane have accomplished a lot at WrestleMania but if Shane wears the romper they are back to square one. Renee asked AJ how he feels after getting a win over Dolph after losing last week. AJ said winners find a way even though it’s not the right way and that’s what Dolph did.
-Shane asked AJ how he feels about competing in a ladder match. AJ said he’s competed in ladder matches before but it was difficult being in the ring with several men going for the same prize.
John’s Thoughts: This must be easier for AJ who’s used to those damn TNA Feast or Fired matches where there are five Money in the Banks on poles!
-AJ said he was going to do some research on how others handled the Money in the Bank Ladder Match. Renee talked again about Dolph Ziggler being the only wrestler in the match to have won previously and successfully cashed in. Renee asked AJ on his thoughts on Baron Corbin. AJ called it a cheap shot on Nakamura early in the night. AJ said Corbin just jumps people from behind. AJ said he’s not worried about Corbin as long as he is aware of where Corbin might be.
-Shane asked AJ about how he feels about having to deal with so many factors in the match like ladders, people, weapons, etc. AJ said the five other guys makes the match difficult but the key is to get the briefcase, it’s not simple. AJ said the ladder is even a weapon.
-Renee asked AJ how it feels to be hit by a ladder. AJ said it sucks. AJ said he was excited to be in the Money in the Bank but disappointed at the pain.
-Renee asked AJ if Dolph Ziggler is the person AJ’s most worried about in the match. AJ said he was worried about Ziggler the most due to experience. AJ said Dolph has found a way to win somehow and AJ was going to watch and see what Dolph did back then to do the same thing.
-Shane said there are so many tactics you can use like playing possum. AJ said he might be taking advantage of grudges in the match like Nakamura being predisposed with Corbin at the moment or Sami with Owens.
-Renee asked AJ if he will end up being a person that cashes in the title shot right away (like her husband) or if he will hold on to it strategically. AJ said it depends on how he feels after the match and the turnaround. AJ stressed that winners find a way to win and he will cash in at the right time. AJ said a good time to cash in is when a person is suffering after a match.
-Renee gave more hype for the Money in the Bank match. As AJ was about to leave the interview set he asked Shane and Renee if they actually are drinking anything out of their Talking Smack mugs. Shane verified that there was a liquid in it and asked if AJ wanted a hit of it. Renee said it was their “surprise drink”. Renee Young closed out Talking Smack with a plug for the Rocket League video game.
John’s Thoughts: Talking Smack seems to be an extension of the WWE Performance Center’s “presentation skills” class where the wrestlers are allowed to cut promos without scripted limitations. Mojo Rawley is one of my favorite at this because the “real” Mojo we see from this and WWE Breaking Ground is way more relatable than WWE’s conduit for Rob Gronkowski. Lana also did as well as she could have. What made things tough was she was unscripted but had to also hold up her accent act. Even though I still prefer JBL, and Daniel Bryan way way more, Shane does a good job being a straight man authority figure. Shane may be one of the best authority figures in pro wrestling by default by not being overbearing. He’s up there with William Regal. Some people might give Dario Cueto the same credit but he got overexposed in Season 2 of Lucha Undergrond. Shane did better than most nights in Talking Smack in that Renee was allowed to carry the segments more and he was very logical in defending his position on not wanting Lana in the Women’s Money in the Bank Match.
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