WWE Year-In-Review 2018 - Triple Threat POV | Smark Out Moment

WWE Year-In-Review 2018 - Triple Threat POV

Posted by Robert DeFelice Sunday, December 30, 2018
Welcome to another edition of Triple Threat from Smark Out Moment, where three of us get together to discuss three questions based on one big topic going down in the week of professional wrestling.

This week, Robert DeFelice, Greg Coleman, and Ben Guest will be giving their thoughts on all that happened this year in WWE.

In 2018, WWWE saw some crazy shake-ups! Who had the best year? Who's going into 2019 with all the momentum? Let's discuss...

Question 1: Who was your male WWE Superstar of the Year?

GUEST: I have to agree with everything said below about AJ Styles, but because I think he deserves a mention, Seth Rollins has been back to his best this year, in-ring he has been almost untouchable and THAT performance in the gauntlet match on Raw earlier in the year… outstanding. Rollins is one of the best wrestlers in the world and despite being out of the main event picture for a majority of 2018, he has continued to prove that he can slot back in at any time.

COLEMAN: The New Daniel Bryan. This one is tough because due to the terrible booking and writing all of the candidates have some asterisk associated with them except one, Daniel Bryan. Braun Strowman had a killer year but was squashed by Lesnar and made to look weak. Seth Rollins had a great year but I feel like they cut his initial Intercontinental Title run too short. AJ Styles was the WWE Champion most of the year but that Nakamura feud didn’t quite live up to expectation.

Since he made his in-ring return at WrestleMania there hasn’t been much dead air to his character or his work. He lasted the longest in The Greatest Royal Rumble Match all while Roderick Strong turned his chest into ground beef. The matches with Big Cass were clearly for him to work himself back into the flow of things. After that, we got some good matches with Cien Almas and AJ Styles on Smackdown Live. Next, we got the long-anticipated feud with The Miz which he came out on top and then to put a bow on his year he turns heel, takes the title off AJ and then carries Brock Lesnar to a pretty good match at Survivor Series. Daniel Bryan has gone from beloved babyface contender to despised heel WWE champion in the course of a calendar year. Anybody who doesn’t feel he’s the WWE Male Superstar of the Year is FICKLE!!

DeFELICE: AJ Styles. I don’t think you can hold the WWE Championship for a year, and not be considered the top guy for that year. Yes, arguments can be made about the positioning of his matches on the various pay-per-view offerings or the quality of the feuds, but you can’t argue that this was AJ’s year.

Question 2: Who was your female WWE Superstar of the Year?

GUEST: Becky Lynch has had an incredible year… since her heel turn. Alexa Bliss had a great start to the year but tailed off a little before and since her injury. Charlotte has, as always, been incredible. But I think one person has really stood out in WWE this year. I hate giving awards with the caveat of “considering this one particular thing that only applies to this one person”, but Ronda Rousey made her in-ring debut at WrestleMania, this April and has perhaps been the most consistent performer. She has definitely been booked in a way to make her look good, but that’s kind of the nature of the business. I think Ronda’s ring work is way ahead of what anyone would have expected, and as someone who was skeptical about her coming to WWE at all, I’m very happy to have her as champion and hope she main events WrestleMania.

DeFELICE: Ronda Rousey took WWE by storm this year, and it was more positive than any of us could’ve ever expected. Ronda needs to be commended for her love of WWE. She could have easily taken a schedule similar to Brock Lesnar’s but she works so much more, and I respect her immensely for it. Her ring work is excellent and she can only go up in 2019.

COLEMAN: The Man, Becky Lynch. Since she turned on Charlotte, no wrestler in all of WWE has been hotter than Becky. And since then all she’s done is poured gas on that fire. Whether it’s taking shots at Edge about his neck on a The Cutting Edge to her use of social media to further develop her character and her feuds coupled with the matches she’s had with Charlotte, no woman has been better than Becky Lynch this year. Period.

Question 3: What was your WWE Match of the Year?

COLEMAN: Becky Lynch vs Charlotte Flair's Last Woman Standing at Evolution: Evolution was the best main roster pay-per-view show for WWE in 2018. The best match of that show was the Last Woman Standing Match between Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair. This match was 5-star caliber and exceeded expectations. In a year where a lot of high profile WWE pay-per-view matches didn’t deliver, this one did in a major way. It’s a damn shame that Rousey-Bella closed the show that night.

GUEST: I really don't think I can argue with the other two here, but for the sake of being different, I'm going to say the men's Royal Rumble match from back in January. Rumble matches can never truly be the match of the year in my opinion, but this year's had everything, top names, surprise (and good) returns. Seriously, Hurricane might have got the biggest pop that night. The ending was also brilliant, WWE realized that having Roman Reigns and Shinsuke Nakamura as the final two would create a 'here we go again’ atmosphere, but accepted that Nakamura had won. We won't talk about what happened to either of them for the rest of the year. The women's Rumble was also excellent, but I slightly prefer the men's match from this year in hindsight.

DeFELICE: Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair’s match at WWE Evolution was the standout performance that the show needed. We had two other Last Man Standing bouts this year, and this easily stood above them. Kudos to both women for their ability which reminds us that the ‘Women’s Evolution’ is more than an annoying marketing campaign. I bow to The Man and The Queen, and so should you.

Those are our thoughts on the issue, but where do you stand?
Let us know your answers to these questions in the comments below!

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AUTHOR OF THIS POST: ROBERT DEFELICE

Robert DeFelice is a journalist and marketing student. You can follow him on Twitter, Instagram as well as his apparel website Time Killer Apparel and his pro wrestling blog PandemoniuMania.

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