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Wolf's Big Board:     Tuesday, June 27, 2017     Tier One - The Big Three   1 ) David Johnson (ARI) RB1   2 ) Le'Veon Bell (PIT) RB2   3 ) Ezekiel Elliott (DAL) RB3   Tier Two - High-end WR1 and RB1s   4 ) Antonio Brown (PIT) WR1   5 ) Julio Jones (ATL) WR2   6 ) Mike Evans (TB) WR3   7 ) Odell Beckham JR. (NYG) WR4   8 ) DeMarco Murray (TEN) RB4   9 ) Melvin Gordon (LAC) RB5   10 ) LeSean McCoy (BUF) RB6   11 ) Jay Ajayi (MIA) RB7   12 ) AJ Green (CIN) WR5   13 ) Jordy Nelson (GB) WR6   14 ) Michael Thomas (NO) WR7   15 ) Dez Bryant (DAL) WR8   16 ) Devonta Freeman (ATL) RB8   Tier 3 - Lower-end RB1 and WR1s, elite second options   17 ) Lamar Miller (HOU) RB9   18 ) DeAndre Hopkins (HOU) WR9   19 ) TY Hilton (IND) WR10   20 ) Leonard Fournette (JAX) RB10   21 ) Rob Gronkowski (NE) TE1   22 ) Brandin Cooks (NE) WR11   23 ) Demaryius Thomas. (DEN) WR12   24 ) Jordan Reed (WAS) TE2   25 ) Doug Baldwin (SEA) WR13   26 ) Amari Cooper (OAK) WR14   Tier 3.5   27 ) Todd Gurley (LAR) RB11   28 ) Carlos Hyde (SF) RB12   29 ) Christian McCaffrey (CAR) RB13   30 ) Jordan Howard (CHI) RB14   31 ) Marshawn Lynch (OAK) RB15   32 ) Davante Adams (GB) WR15   33 ) Alshon Jeffery (PHI) WR16   34 ) Isaiah Crowell (CLE) RB16   35 ) Tyreek Hill (KC) WR17   36 ) Keenan Allen (LAC) WR18   37 ) Spencer Ware (KC) RB17   Tier 4 - Elite QBs, Solid #2 RBs + WRs, side TE1s   38 ) Bilal Powell (NYJ) RB18   39 ) Tom Brady (NE) QB1   40 ) Sammy Watkins WR19   41 ) Aaron Rodgers (GB) QB2   42 ) Travis Kielce (KC) TE3   43 ) Terrelle Pryor (WAS) WR20   44 ) Allen Robinson (JAC) WR21   44 ) Mike Gillislee (NE) RB19   45 ) Mark Ingram (NO) RB20   46 ) Golden Tate (DET) WR22   47 ) Jamison Crowder (WAS) WR23   48 ) Greg Olsen (CAR) TE4   48 ) Tevin Coleman (ATL) RB21   49 ) Willie Snead (NO) WR24   50 ) Doug Martin (TB) RB22   51 ) Michael Crabtree (OAK) WR25   52 ) Brandon Marshal (NYG) WR26   53 ) Julian Edelman (NE) WR27   54 ) Donte Moncrief (IND) WR28   55 ) Drew Brees (NO) QB3   56 ) Ameer Abdullah (DET) RB23   57 ) Jimmy Graham (SEA) TE5   58 ) Tyler Eifert (CIN) TE6   59 ) Martavis Bryant (PIT) WR29   Tier 5 - Last Startable WRs and RBs + TE1 Candidates   60 ) Pierre Garcon (SF) WR30   61 ) Eric Decker (NYJ) WR31   62 ) Jarvis Landry (MIA) WR32   63 ) Larry Fitzgerald (ARI) WR33   64 ) Samaje Perine (WAS) RB24   65 ) Joe Mixon (CIN) RB25   66 ) CJ Anderson (DEN) RB26   67 ) Matt Ryan (ATL) QB4   68 ) Stefon Diggs (MIN) WR33   69 ) Emmanuel Sanders (DEN) WR34   70 ) Ty Montgomery (GB) RB27   71 ) Hunter Henry (LAC) TE7   72 ) Corey Davis (TEN) WR35   73 ) Adrian Peterson (NO) RB28   74 ) Kelvin Benjamin (CAR) WR36   75 ) Delanie Walker TE8   76 ) Paul Perkins (NYG) RB29   77 ) CJ Prosise (SEA) RB30   78 ) Eddie Lacy (SEA) RB31   79 ) Dalvin Cook (MIN) RB32   80 ) Theo Riddick (DET) RB33   81 ) Frank Gore (IND) RB34   82 ) Cameron Meredith (CHI) WR38   83 ) Mike Wallace (BAL) WR39   84 ) DeSean Jackson (TB) WR40   85 ) Martellus Bennett (GB) TE9   TIer 7 - side QB1s and Top WR and RB Lottery Tickets   86 ) Andrew Luck (IND) QB5   87 ) Derek Carr (OAK) QB6   88 ) Kirk Cousins (WAS) QB7   89 ) Marcus Mariota (TEN) QB8   90 ) Philip Rivers (LAC) QB9   91 ) Ben Roethlisberger QB10   92 ) Dak Prescott (DAL) QB11   93 ) Jameis Winston (TB) QB12   94 ) Joe Williams (SF) RB35   95 ) Derrick Henry (TEN) RB36   96 ) Kareem Hunt (KC) RB37   97 ) Jamaal Williams (GB) RB38   98 ) Davante Parker (MIA) WR41   99 ) Josh Doctson (WAS) WR42   100 ) Ted Ginn (NO) WR43  

Wrestlemania Wrapup: Missed Opportunities Galore

Nothing like hyping a big debut on “the grandest stage of them all” … And then taking a 0-9, -$310 face plant, including a bet so bad that $60 were gone before a bell even rang. The only way to describe this premiere? Me on the receiving end of all of these:

 

You might think a night of rest could help ease the sting…let me assure you this is not the case. Truly, this Instagram post from Barstool is the only accurate capture of facing Monday after such a train wreck night.

 

But I’ve already bitched and complained enough. It’s time to learn what’s needed, eat the loss, and move full steam ahead with my original goal:

Going down as the best fantasy football blog of all time. Someday, I’ll be wiping with $310.

Before continuing this quest, though, let’s breakdown the action, look at the future implications, and put a final bow on Wrestlemania 32.

Overall Wrestlemania Review

I found the night as a whole to be like a bump of the white powder — The initial rush was there with some highly entertaining big spots and returns:

 

  • The Intercontinental Title Ladder Match had some INSANE spots, despite a weak finish
  • Similarly, the in-ring pace + impressive moves sets from AJ Styles and Jericho was exactly what we’ve come to expect from these two. Unfortunately alike, the finish left a lot to be desired
  • Shane leaping from the 20 foot steel Cell and “exploding” through the announcer table.
  • Ambrose eating copious amounts of chair following a massive F5. Him kissing the barb wire bat moments earlier.
  • Stone Cold stunning Xavier Woods and Rusev (highly underrated sell) into new worlds. The fresh cracking of an HBK Sweet Chin delivered square to Barret’s jaw. A sweaty Mandible Claw shoved into Sheamus’ throat. Three WWE icons perfectly executing their historic finishers and pounding beers together in front of over 100,000.
  • Freaking Shaquille O’neal saw in-ring action.

Despite these transcendental moments, very little about this ‘Mania feels impactful for our current roster. In fact, all the poor bookings and blown chances boil and stew like the next day hangover after a night of nose candy.

The horrendous ‘Mania finish was problem number one. You need to send off the greatest spectacle in sports entertainment with a bang, not a whimper. A final memory so big even non-wrestling fans want to know more.

Instead, we were left with the dull, predictable image which fans have been vehemently rejecting for months: a baby face Reigns being stuffed down our throats.

Precluding this send-off image, the Reigns and HHH’s Championship Match was equally unmemorable.  It couldn’t hold a candle to the Divas Championship Match in terms of in-ring action, or HIAC for “holy shit” moments.  It just felt, bleh. Not the final taste WWE should’ve left in our mouths.

Ultimately, the problems stem far beyond just a lame finish. What’s far more concerning is that so many deserving talents where placed in a position to make tremendous progress, and instead they end the night in reverse.  In a night where many could’ve legitimately emerged Superstars, the only real lasting impact was that of a Divas match that completely reshaped the division’s perception and future.

I offer more on how exactly ‘Mania 32 could’ve established a whole new era of talent. In fewer words, they missed some serious opportunities to truly push Kevin Owens & The Intercontinental Belt, AJ Styles as a legit face, and The New Day as truly dominant in the ring in addition to on the mic. Not a single one of these happened, and I don’t see the logic behind delaying the future.

Reigns seems similarly trapped. Without a serious heel turn, and ideally a spokesperson a la Paul Heyman, he  appears destined to flop miserably as a babyface. Wrestlemania could’ve provided a complete 360 degree and fresh start character. Instead, it only fanned the fire that’s already burning Roman’s potential to the ground.

Even Ambrose feels unmoved.  Sure, he and Lesnar maintained solid intensity and told a strong story throughout their match. But it didn’t leave that, “Wow, that was fucking awesome” taste in your mouth like a Mick Foley + Edge battle. Call me sick, but their was plenty of punishment potential left untapped; I think we all wanted to see Ambrose get pushed to the limit a bit more to see how much he truly can take. I still love the Lunatic Fringe, but he doesn’t leave ‘Mania with wildly improved value.

As mentioned, the Divas Championship battle is the lone exception here. The near taps, near pins, crazy counters and high flying action absolutely tore AT&T Stadium to the ground, and has elevated the entire female wrestling landscape to unforeseen heights. Call it sexist, but I  didn’t think I’d see the day where “divas” would put on the match Wrestlemania would be remembered by, and I’m genuinely excited for the new era of wrestling these ladies are ushering.

Oh, and Shaq showed the world why he could be a WWE Megastar. Free Agent priority #1 for you, Vince.

But ultimately, this felt like a fairly massive step back on a night where a huge leap forward was possible. Yes, we had a few “wow” moments that kept us energized, even captivated, for spurts. Still, this felt like a huge missed opportunity and some very questionable booking.

A day later, with the rush far gone, the WWE should take a long, sad look into the mirror and make some false-promises to never, ever snort blow again.

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