2015: A Look Back in Horror – The Worst in Wrestling!

147 Submitted by on Mon, 28 December 2015, 22:49

For Harry. May you finally encounter immortals that stand a chance of matching your incredible wit.

By the end of 2015, it seemed that WWE finally figured out how to use Roman Reigns: as a cold-hearted warrior with the fury of a thousand angry Gods, violently laying waste to everyone that stood between him and the top of the mountain. Within a 24-hour stretch in mid-December, it appeared that WWE had managed to undo all of the damage inflicted creatively upon Reigns throughout the year, and had successfully gotten him over in tough towns like Boston and Philadelphia. Kudos.

Unfortunately, none of that goodwill can erase what an awful year 2015 was.

It seems that every conversation I’ve had with good ol’ RD Reynolds this year, aside from those centered on football or the happenings in our personal lives, veered into just how mind-numbingly bad professional wrestling was. Sure, that’s a typical rasslin’ conversation between WrestleCrap’s founder and this cynical scribe, though there seemed to be much less jovality in our banter. In other words, you could literally say that wrestling was so bad, it wasn’t funny.

The year 2015 did have some strong points, mind you. Getting the good stuff out of the way (for those who claim I’m excessively negative, and are quite frankly correct): WrestleMania XXXI ruled, NXT and Lucha Underground remained must-see TV, The New Day became the saviors of three-hour Raws, the match quality on said Raws went up thanks to a talented roster, New Japan continued its run of excellence (especially WrestleKingdom with JIM FREAKIN’ ROSS calling the action), and WWE Network added plenty of entertaining content, both retro and contemporary.

Naturally, the list below will cover none of those things.

WrestleCrap, being the time-tested haven of the ‘worst’ in wrestling, is obliged to look back on 2015 with mournful eyes at the worst gimmicks, storylines, concepts, news events, and general malarkey that the wrestling world spit up like the most disgusting of bile. Some entries are silly, some are serious, and many (if not all) will be subjective. You will disagree with some of the entries. You will be inclined to call me a moron, as many of you have done previously. This does not change the order of the list. Some crap is more tolerable for certain people. Some odors don’t bother select folks. Look at spinsters with fifty cats running around.

I do, however, look back at the previous year’s list to see if I regret any of my selections. Last year, I found three items from the 2013 list that I came around on. This year, there are two picks from my 2014 list that my perspective has certainly changed toward, albeit with qualifiers.

21. The New Day. In their prior form as all-too-happy babyfaces, they were a pandering, borderline-insulting act. Following their heel turn in the spring, they became one of the few reasons to watch Raw, on account of their impeccable group chemistry and legit laugh-inducing banter. I don’t apologize for ranking them last year, but I’m glad that something I had termed a ‘goner’ ended up bringing me around, and truly surprised me.

12. Brock Lesnar, absentee champion. The lengthy gap between Lesnar appearances in the fall seemed to cheapen WWE and its top prize, but I did change my view a bit when I realized how much more his matches meant something. Seth Rollins, as much as I enjoy his work, was oversaturated by being on TV every week, especially in poorly-written main event angles. Lesnar suffered no such ‘battle damage’, and it’s true: part-timers feel much fresher by virtue of being part-timers. The length between title defenses was absurd, but it had a benefit.

With that out of the way, let’s take a gander at what drek 2015 provided for all of us. As always, feedback is appreciated at my Twitter.

 

50. Chris Jericho lobs softballs

‘Talk is Jericho’ is a pretty well-acclaimed podcast, but you wouldn’t know it from watching Y2J lightly volley questions at John Cena and Stephanie McMahon on WWE Network. After Steve Austin firmly grilled Vince and Hunter previously, you can see why Vince would want to protect two ‘investments’ behind benign chit-chat.


50
49. MexAmerica

WWE was willing to do anything to bring in rejuvenated Alberto Del Rio, as they were lacking a strong Latin draw. After reputedly throwing out a ‘Godfather offer’ financially, WWE immediately shoehorned Del Rio into a far-fetched alliance with long-absent Zeb Colter as heels that promoted tolerance. It lasted six weeks, far less time than Del Rio’s disinterested gaze, which persists onward.

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48. Burial of The Ascension

After reigning for one year as unstoppable monsters in NXT’s tag division, Konnor and Viktor migrated to the main roster as face-painted baddies in the vein of, say, Demolition. They were immediately presented as a joke, complete with frequent JBL burials (read: Vince yelling in his ear), and ended up a waste of development time, as well as a perfectly-good throwback gimmick.

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47. Jon Stewart interferes at SummerSlam

Long-time Daily Show anchor enjoys copious involvement with WWE, who will naturally cling to any celebrity as though they could piss platinum. Stewart’s a step up from, say, Florida Georgia Line, but facilitating a World title match finish was a tad excessive. Ostensibly meant to give WWE more mainstream attention, the steep decline in Raw ratings to record lows prove no effect from the ex Zen-master.

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46. WWE publishes video of CM Punk’s ass

Well, kinda. After Punk claimed to have worked his final months in WWE with a life-threatening staph infection, company doctor Chris Amann brought litigation against Punk for his claims. WWE backed their medic with a publicly-released video that zooms in on the area of Punk’s alleged lump. The viewing public is hardly a summoned jury, so it was more a chance to damage Punk in front of its own audience.

46
45. The rationale for keeping Chyna out of the WWE Hall of Fame

Under stern questioning from Steve Austin, Triple H claimed that putting ex-flame Chyna (a vital part of the Attitude Era, whether you like her or not) into the Hall would set a bad example. Like, what if his daughters Google ‘Chyna’ and come across her *other* career? One can only imagine what Hunter’s kids find when they Google Jimmy Snuka or Tammy Sytch or Mike Tyson or Donald Trump….

45
44. Bray Wyatt can summon LIGHTNING

Some things only The Undertaker can make look cool, whether it’s defy thermodynamics (looking at you, Bray) or wear eyeliner (looking at you, Derek Carr). It’s not a bad idea to have *some* supernaturally-based characters with Undertaker on borrowed time as a performer, but since Wyatt’s character has been reduced to boogity-boogity-boo gibberish and general irrelevance, the light show looks dumber.

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43. Bray Wyatt’s random promos

Whether it was Undertaker or Ryback or Roman Reigns, the charismatic Wyatt would spend upwards of a month (at least it felt that way) making VERY veiled threats that read like a rock-hard sudoku puzzle. It was almost as though WWE had no idea who Bray would feud with next, so they figured, “Just send him out to talk for a few weeks while we pull a name out of our ass.”

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42. The Authority drags on

Surely by now, you’ve realized The Authority will never perish. Triple H and Stephanie merely exist to dress nice for the cameras and put forth a more suave image than Vince did in his days as an impulsively-boorish, sponsor-frightening, on-air character. Hunter and Stephanie view themselves as omnipotently decorative, which is why the ratings dropped until Roman Reigns created excitement by burying Paul.

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41. WWE Hall of Fame announcements ‘broken’ by TMZ

Beginning with Randy Savage’s overdue induction announcement, Michael Cole would squawk during the first hour of Raw about TMZ ‘breaking the news’ earlier in the day of who the next inductee for the Hall was going to be. Although it’s to be expected that WWE would paw at any opportunity for media attention, no matter how plainly plastic, this seemed like kowtowing from a company claiming to be a Universe.

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40. Undertaker is a heel for some reason

After causing Seth Rollins to be swept away into the Phantom Zone for 24 hours, The Undertaker appeared at Battleground and began a long run of hitting Brock Lesnar in the balls. This culminated in an epic brawl at Hell in a Cell, whereby Undertaker turned babyface again by allowing himself to be abducted by four hillbillies. For a company that loves to ‘tell stories’, WWE makes David Lynch look like Dr. Seuss.

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39. Stephanie McMahon says what most figure she believes

During WrestleMania weekend, Stephanie quoted Twitter founder Biz Stone in that tweet to the right, which pretty much coincides with WWE’s general marketing campaign. While it’s probably a sad reality that most companies view causes like breast cancer charities and supporting the Armed Forces more as a chance to improve their own image, here’s Stephanie bandying it like it’s the official WWE slogan.

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38. Cena’s Springboard Stunner

Though far from the five-move wonder his detractors claim, John Cena updated his moveset at WrestleMania with the addition of a rope-sprung Ace Crusher. Unfortunately, Cena rarely hits it properly, prompting an inevitable, “he didn’t get all of it!” from the announcers. Some believe that Cena was given the move out of spite toward Austin, whose relationship with Vince was chillier at the time.

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37. AAA TripleMania XXIII plagued by production issues

A promising card featuring Rey Mysterio and Alberto Del Rio descended into unwatchable madness early with a frustrating barrage of sound and picture issues that made TNA’s worst production gaffes look like the work of Federico Fellini. Matt Striker’s commentary was also considered a low point, and a far cry from the blend of excited mark/passive smark he brings to Lucha Underground telecasts.

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36. The Rosebush

Adam Rose won the hearts of many viewers during an ESPN special in May, when he was shown to be a doting father to a son born with an abdominal birth defect. WWE’s best idea to get this inspirational and admirable figure back on TV comes in the premise of a ‘celebrity gossip’ segment that was written with 12-year-olds in mind. Actually, that’s probably an insult to those younger viewers.

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35. Tough Enough

Although WWE’s most identifiable stab at reality television has proven ineffective at creating long-term stars out of the winners (save for John Morrison in 2003), the 2015 revival proved far less satisfying than the 2011 edition. A cruddy format was blamed for the halved television ratings, as well as a lack of Steve Austin, whose icy, gritty demeanor carried the 2011 rendition into semi-watchability.

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34. TNA vs. Global Force Wrestling

Jeff Jarrett’s attempt at a new TNA, the currently-untelevised GFW, forged a brief working relationship with his former operation, and GFW was portrayed as a band of nWo-like invaders. That is, an nWo consisting of Chris Masters, Sonjay Dutt, Curt Hawkins, and Justin Gabriel. Taking nothing away from their considerable talents, the co-opt didn’t exactly usher in millions of disbelieving eyes on Wednesdays.

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33. John Cena vs. Rusev, I Quit Match

This revival of the classic Hulk Hogan vs. Foreign Powers prototype mercifully ended at WWE Payback in May, but not before giving the world an outlandishly-excessive snoozer. Thirty minutes of tedium included a scene where Rusev is apparently immolated in a pyrotechnic explosion. The sole highlight is a defiant Rusev, who screams, “Damn your old mother” in Bulgarian at Cena. Really.

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32. Intercontinental hot potato

The build for what was a really good seven-man ladder match for the Intercontinental title at WrestleMania featured all seven entrants taking turns stealing the belt from each other. For, like, weeks on end. Babyface stars like Daniel Bryan, Dolph Ziggler, and Dean Ambrose looked pretty stupid getting caught up in the Groundhog Day of stories. Thus, through osmosis, main eventer Roman Reigns looked stronger.

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31. Josh Mathews, the voice of TNA

Mathews always seemed to have a passion for wrestling, which is why it’s weird to hear him sound so disinterested and condescending on TNA broadcasts. Perhaps it’s a reflection on the company itself (Mike Tenay lost his energy in later years), but Mathews’ Twitter jabs at the likes of Jim Ross and Samoa Joe this year make it hard to sympathize with him, or respect him as the voice of a promotion.

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30. Tug-of-Bore

Just when it seemed like the go-home segment for WrestleMania (Reigns snatching Lesnar’s WWE championship) was fixing to get interesting, the two heavyweights instead engaged in a half-hearted struggle for possession of the belt. Not a single punch was thrown as the show faded to black. At least incinerate each other with eye lasers like Sting and Jake Roberts did at Halloween Havoc, for Chrissakes.

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29. Intercontinental Elimination Chamber

Strong candidate for WWE’s worst match of the year was riddled with disorganization. Mark Henry was forced to enter the match early after his pod was broken apart. Sheamus ended up stuck in his own pod, which could have been a set-up for him to enter late, but everyone else in the match shambled around uncomfortably in an overt stall for time. A total throwaway for a once-valuable gimmick match.

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28. The Shera Shake

Or is it the Shera Shuffle? Either way, Mahabali Shera, TNA’s ‘trump card’ for drawing toward their TV tapings in India (that were cancelled), possesses the ability to charm his opponents with a simple dance move, causing them to replicate the dance themselves. The picture to the right says it all: Al Snow looks boggled, while Mr. Anderson looks like he’d rather be anywhere else in the world.

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27. Crowds jump the shark

The post-WrestleMania crowd was becoming a draw unto itself, after imaginative showings in 2013-14. That luster began to fade the minute the revelers in San Jose chanted, “WE ARE AWESOME” as a self-pat on the back for their counter-culturalism (toward a product they’re pumping money into). The antics of the NXT crowds at Full Sail took the same trajectory: amusing at first, self-wanking eventually.

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26. Slammiversary spoiled by days of TV tapings beforehand

TNA’s dire belt-tightening became all too evident in late June, when months worth of Impact episodes were taped prior to the Slammiversary PPV, meaning spoiler-checkers (including those attending at the Impact Zone, the same venue for each show) knew almost to a fault how Slammiversary was going to play out. A sad state of affairs for a once-ambitious wrestling alternative.

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25. Cast of Entourage hosts Raw

Really, the greatest tragedy here was that Jeremy Piven didn’t pop up to promote ‘SummerFest’. Instead, Vincent Chase and the boys hobnob with the Authority in a backstage bit with camera shifts that are unusual for a Raw telecast. Then they support Zack Ryder’s bid in losing to John Cena, all to promote an unnecessary movie based on a TV series. But hey, at least the McMahons got the rub.

25
24. Machine Gun Kelly no-sells your powerbomb

Rapper MGK gets booed out of Monday Night Raw during a time-filling performance, one only made interesting by Kevin Owens powerbombing him off the stage immediately afterward. Many took this as Owens turning face, especially since MGK isn’t remotely likable. Then MGK tweeted that the move didn’t hurt and that Owens is a chump. At least it was quicker than the whole K-Fed ordeal.

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23. Terminator: Rise of the Torn Quadricep

Hunter’s ‘King of Kings’ entrance from WrestleMania XXX, with three familiar harem girls, was overblown but with a sense of panache. This was just a commercial for a bastardized sequel to some of the most brilliant sci-fi thrillers in history, complete with scanned read-outs of Sting, and Hunter holding a handful of skulls for some reason. On the upside, we know the COO will graciously show ass if it rakes in dollars.

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22. Wasting Cesaro’s potential

While not everyone can be pushed at once, the rallying cry for Cesaro, who had been slighted by McMahon a year ago for ‘not connecting with the crowd’, rang louder than the calls for most others. After a fun Tag Team title reign with Tyson Kidd, Cesaro went solo following Kidd’s neck injury. There were great matches therein, but Cesaro functionally became the new Tito Santana: make others look good, then lose.

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21. The Hulk Hogan thing

There were no winners in any of this. Hogan watched the tatters of his public image be swept away in a furious gust. WWE looked like massive hypocrites for firing him after their own questionable history of what gimmicks they’ve presented, and what shady figures they’ve worked with. About the only positive in the entire ugly ordeal was that Hogan didn’t have to associate with the lifeless Tough Enough any more.

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20. Los Villanos vs. Psycho Circus

As if TripleMania’s hideous presentation wasn’t enough of a clusterfrig, the night was also responsible for unleashing arguably the worst match of 2015. The Villano side aged between 50 and 63, and understandably lacked the robust athleticism of their prime. Dave Meltzer broke the glass that housed his negative five star rating, a rarely-used label of ignominy, and applied it to the slow, confusing mess.

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19. R-Truth is obliviously stupid

The ‘Little Jimmy’ absurdity has long since faded from memory, but here’s Truth, still playing an absolute moron with an oft-stated arachnophobia, among other half-baked quirks. It’s hard to say what was more nauseating to watch: Truth freaking out over Stardust’s use of rubber spiders, or pretending to be a king while brandishing a toilet plunger scepter. There’s always room for a goofy babyface, but man….

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18. Bill DeMott resigns as NXT trainer

DeMott had been accused by more than just a handful of prospective wrestlers of physical abuse and other demeaning actions going back several years, which prompted a WWE investigation in 2013 that apparently found no evidence of wrongdoing. When Ryan Nemeth (Dolph Ziggler’s brother) and others claimed to have never been questioned in the investigation, it soon snowballed into DeMott’s exit.

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17. The Eunuch Express saves time, ruins shows

So a vindictive Stephanie fires Dolph Ziggler, Ryback, and Erick Rowan in an exceedingly-long ending to Raw, and the three babyfaces just stand there like goofs and take it. While they certainly can’t strike a woman, as babyfaces had opportunity to do in the Attitude Era, couldn’t they at least attack Hunter, or make grunty threats? Of course not, because if they move, it throws off the camera blocking.

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16. Paige talks ill of Reid Flair

It’s not necessarily a bad thing to invoke real life tragedy into a story in order to get the crowd to hate a character – evil people do evil things. In this instance, the mentioning of departed Reid Flair by a generally-liked Paige (playing the heel) felt riveted-on and forced, and the fans saw through the hollow story injection. WWE, for their part, subtly attempted to shift blame for the bad idea onto Charlotte herself.

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15. Destination America cancels Impact and Ring of Honor

First, the Discovery Channel subsidiary cancels Impact at the same time it makes a deal with ROH. Then by autumn, both promotions are being shown the door. Now the second and third top wrestling companies in the United States are hooking their trailers to POP TV (the former TV Guide Channel) and Comet (a lower-tier broadcast start-up). Is Jamie Kellner running Destination America?

15
14. The Warrior Award

I anticipate the most hate-tweets and such for this one. Regardless, WWE twisted The Ultimate Warrior’s wish for an award that would recognize the behind-the-scenes contributors within the company, and instead made a “we’re good people” honorific for Conor Michalek, a cancer-stricken Daniel Bryan fan that died in 2014. The manipulation and true intentions (see entry 39) trump any well meaning.

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13. WWE as SportsCenter fodder

ESPN admitted outright that their aim for content was ‘ratings driven’ (TebowMania, 24/7 coverage of Manziel, LeBron, et al), and thereby sold airtime during Tuesday night editions of SportsCenter to WWE for the purpose of airing fluff pieces for the company’s benefit. The non-cynics didn’t complain until they realized that ESPN would never cover anything damaging to WWE, like, say, Jimmy Snuka’s murder charges.

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12. WWE and Susan G. Komen, Year Four

We conclude this trifecta of public masturbation with one of the more reviled ‘charity’ organizations, and WWE’s continued daisy-chain with a controversial group of grubby charlatans. I realize I could have lumped the previous three entries into one uber-entry, but do you really want to read about Big Show winning the Andre battle royal, or Tom Phillips and the social media lounge at 50 and 49? Yeah, I thought so.

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11. Dolph Ziggler-Lana-Rusev love triangle

Rather than allow Lana to leave Rusev and stand on her own two empowered feet, she was immediately booked to be smitten with Ziggler, reduced to playing a lovesick teenager. Ziggler and Lana displayed the collective chemistry of spaghetti and Teller, and Rusev came off as the most sensible character in the muddled mess. Then Lana and Rusev were legitimately engaged, mercifully ending this.

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10. Throw Mickie Before the Train

Yep, there was once a time when James Storm pushed Mickie James in front of a moving train. TNA assured us that Mickie wasn’t actually dead, although some jokers did update her Wikipedia page to add a date after the birthday dash. It makes you wonder just how unsafe a working environment TNA really is. No wonder Samoa Joe had the white van ninjas drop him off at the WWE Performance Center.

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9. Byron Saxton gets sent out to die

After an irate Brock Lesnar murdered the commentary team during the typically-frenzied post-WrestleMania Raw, Saxton served as the emergency brake among all of the fun. So lifeless was Saxton that he may have been wheeled out during commercial break on a hand-truck by Andrew McCarthy and Jonathan Silverman. Or maybe Saxton simply did what most fans today do, and fell asleep in the second hour.

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8. Sting in 2015 – every bit of it

First, poor Sting gets wrangled into a story where he’s defending a long dead WCW against somehow-heroic Triple H. Then Hunter beats him at WrestleMania by braining him with a sledgehammer, to which Sting shakes his hand afterward. Then Sting stands there like a statue for a main event segment on Raw, prior to losing to Seth Rollins at Night of Champions, despite Rollins being worn down by Cena a match earlier.

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7. Miz vs. Mizdow’s lack of a true blowoff

One of the few intriguing feuds in 2015, in which the fans wanted to see comeuppance, came when beloved and rejuvenated Damien Sandow had finally had enough of The Miz’s unquenchable ego. The teased turn dragged out for well over two months, taking place on WrestleMania’s pre-show, and Sandow, who had been wildly cheered for months, was quickly jobbed out to Miz in a throwaway match on Raw.

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6. Dueling Kanes

Seth Rollins was at one time booked as the focused and calculating tactician of The Shield, which explains what Triple H kayfabe saw in him. Then he becomes so dumb that he doesn’t anticipate that Corporate Kane taking a leave is the precursor to Demon Kane (or rather, a 48-year-old cosplaying as a red Angry Bird) showing up to kick his ass. Rudimentary, gee-golly-gosh storytelling.

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5. Kane’s job evaluation

Another attempt at infusing drawn-out, Attitude Era-style comedy segments into today’s product, only with more edited and re-edited scripting and less organic connection with the crowd. Naturally, Kane somehow survives the inspection of some well-to-do evaluator, despite Seth Rollins’ fervent objections, and the crowd slowly dies. Shouldn’t the first question be why a corporate officer answers to a mononym?

5
4. Sufferin’ succotash!

Best case scenario: Reigns lost a wager involving a first-round NFL playoff game, and had to recite Sylvester the Cat’s famous phrase as part of an honest-to-god wrestling promo. Worst case scenario: Vince McMahon thinks that Reigns is just like The Rock (spoiler: nobody is) and can make outlandish dialogue sound like the funniest thing ever. With that, the Roman Empire developed more troublesome cracks.

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3. Tater tots!

Eleven months later, Reigns ended Raw with Sheamus during possibly the least-watched third hour Raw since the show’s expanded in 2012. It was here that Reigns made a testicular insinuation about Sheamus to the delight of a crowd thinning out as though somebody pulled the fire alarm. When Raw’s number came in the following night, a dreadful 2.15, it was more an unpleasant expectation than a legit shocker.

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2. The 2015 Royal Rumble

Already a one-match wonder headed into the Rumble itself, all hell broke loose in Philadelphia when Daniel Bryan was eliminated early. By now, you know that Reigns was booed out of the building en route to an insulting finishing sequence that required the presence of The Rock to try and stem the tide of. In all honesty, the 2014 Rumble was a better match than this. Reigns’ win was secondary to lack of imagination.

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1. The Divas Revolution

At least with Reigns, there was a plan. A poorly-executed plan, but a plan regardless. With the Divas, owing to the rise in fame of Ronda Rousey and the gold medal US women’s soccer team, WWE called up some of NXT’s finest females, cobbled them into some directionless version of the Team Challenge Series, and left the fans feeling completely short-changed. Pray for Bayley when she gets called up.

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Written by

Justin Henry is WrestleCrap's inquiring newsman, thirsting for knowledge always. He enjoys the art of satire, as you'll find in many of his works here at WrestleCrap. Drop him a line on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/notoriousjrh) and Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/jrhwriting)
147 Responses to "2015: A Look Back in Horror – The Worst in Wrestling!"
  1. Will says:

    Sounds to me that the person who wrote this article should stop watching wrestling.

  2. OPC says:

    At the start of every year, I always wonder if there could really be this much crap to come out for the next 12 months. I am always proven wrong.

  3. John C says:

    I would vote for From Bulgaria with Love starring Rusev, Lana, Dolph & Summer as zzzzz zzzz zzzzzz…sorry I fell asleep just typing about it. Just couldn’t gin (or vodka) up any interest in such a boring storyline. However confused Rocky face is probably my favorite image of the year.

  4. Raging_Demons says:

    Don’t forget that the Diva’s Revolution, which was supposed to be based on women wrestlers with actual talent being pushed, ended as all of them buried to Nikki Bella who was made famous for being in a public relationship with John Cena over there on “Total Divas” which lead to believe that Nikki Bella got where she is today by using “SNU-SNU” (cleaned that up for Deal) on Cena to get ahead which made having an actual “Revolution” in the first place seem pointless. 2015 was horrible for the Diva’s Division (if it was any good in the first place) when Nikki Bella not only buried the Diva’s Revolution but basically destroyed any credibility, if they had any, the Diva’s Division had when she broke AJ Lee’s Diva Title reign record as having the longest Diva Title reign in history. Man when Nikki Bella broke the record there was a lot of hate & vitriol towards her; some of the hate was aimed at her for “SNU-SNU” Cena related purposes and some was aimed using Nikki to break AJ’s Title Reign as a hidden dig (like the Cena Springboard Stunner) towards CM Punk since AJ Lee’s currently Punk’s married wife. In 2015 Nikki Bella left the Diva’s Division as a wasteland with Charlotte given the duty of taking over a barren landscape that as far as I know nobody really cares about anymore.

    I’m surprised Justin that you didn’t put Road Dogg’s Tweets (currently a WWE “Producer”) about his opinions about WWE fans wanting to watch over promotions like TNA & ROH in the list. The tweets were and I’m paraphrasing here were basically “Its OK for you to watch’ll whatever promotion you want but you’ll be back (to WWE), you’ll always be back.” To me it shows how WWE is today of how they view their fans & basically they really don’t care who you are as long as you watch or buy their products, which you NEVER SAY in public. Those tweets left a really bad taste in my mouth that I haven’t gone back to WWE since.

    • Guest says:

      I for one never took the Divas Revolution as a sign of WWE opting to use the more talented divas over the allegedly “less” talented ones. I took it as a sign that WWE was going to actually start booking the division worth a dam eventually with the end goal of making the matches compartively as relevant as the men’s division. But they didn’t really pull that, in fact they made it worse, Nikki Bella not being owed any blame despite what smarks like to accuse her of concerning her rise in the division (despite AJ Lee not being handed the same criticism).

      Secondly Road Dogg’s tweets regardless of how you may feel about the context behind them are true even Joey Styles has gotten in on the act recently. Wrestling fans love to complain about the quality of the current WWE product yet they show up every week to watch Raw or Smackdown (and complain) or every day to read the dirt sheets on what’s happening.

      Basically smarks are like people who crap on the Kardashians to whine and moan about her overexposed and annoying they are and yet show up every five minutes on a comment section somewhere to mention them while complaining about them.

    • Jextoo says:

      Yeah, Road Dogg must ignore WWE’s ratings. They’ve not dropped on their own. I left WWE and never came back. I see no point in putting money into WWE when it sucks.

      Some of us aren’t enablers.

  5. Hulk6785 says:

    It just amazes me that the same company can put on the crapfest that is RAW also gives us NXT, the developmental show so good that people wish the wrestlers would stay there rather than get called up to the main roster.

  6. "The Big Cheese" Paul Kraft says:

    This is a great summery for me because I completely tuned out of the product this year. Nice job as always, Justin.

  7. Jerichoholic Ninja says:

    The absolutely amazing thing is that people were using the magic words “boom period” as recently as the 2014 post-Mania Raw. And why not? The WWE Network had just launched, giving fans theoretical access to the history of wrestling. NXT was going strong, and there were a lot of wrestlers there showing great promise. The WWE seemed to finally be getting behind Daniel Bryan. They had just come off a string of great shows, including a WrestleMania that had outperformed expectations and one of the all-time great Raw shows in the post-Mania edition (a show which has lost a lot of its luster in hindsight thanks to the wasted opportunities and death of Warrior). With one Paul Heyman promo, Lesnar had shaken off his previous Triple H and Cena losses and was the monster he needed to be. And most importantly, they had a group of up-and-comers they seemed determined to give some level of protection to in Ambrose, Rollins, Reigns, Rusev and Wyatt.

    All it took was a few months, and nobody said “boom period” again.

  8. B-Rad says:

    “Sheamus ended up stuck in his own pod, which could have been a set-up for him to enter late, but everyone else in the match shambled around uncomfortably in an overt stall for time.”

    …but wasn’t it revealed that Sheamus just had locked himself in the pod so he could enter the match later, thus resting longer as his opponents beat each other up?

    • Justin Henry says:

      That ‘explanation’ felt like a scramble, especially since the announcers didn’t come to that conclusion until very late. More evidence against it was the fact that Ziggler and company stalled in extremely odd fashion while waiting for Sheamus to enter. Something was waaaaaay off. I would agree that Sheamus was being devious if not for that prolonged awkwardness.

      • I'm Not Using My Real Name says:

        If you watch it you can see Sheamus bend down to the bottom of the pod and take out the big cross he wears around his neck. He laughs as he pulls it out because that’s what was stopping the pod from opening. He did it to stall from having to enter the match. The announcers stupidly missed it until they were probably told to mention it after the fact.

        Not saying it was a classic by any means, just saying that the pod not opening was really part of the plan.

        • Si says:

          It is however the case that Henry’s early entrance completely messed up the flow of the match, and thanks to the ring mikes being turned up too loud we could all hear Dolph attempting to reorganize everyone mid-match.

        • Adam says:

          I’m guessing that was just him taking it to hand to a ref – every Chamber I can think of, the doors open from outside the cage. You can’t jam it from inside the pod.

          • Greg says:

            No, that was a planned spot. If it wasn’t, then everyone would have waited around for him to come in. They didn’t. No one kept looking towards his pod. If I were waiting for him to get out, I would have constantly looked towards his pod.

            Why would he have kept his necklace if that wasn’t a planned spot?

  9. Philip says:

    The Ascension are the very personification of Vince McMahon’s need to go away. Konnor & Viktor’s burial has basically made the entire NXT tag division look like a joke (“LOL, those losers were the longest-reigning NXT tag champions? That division must suck!”).

    • James says:

      It’s almost like he sees NXT as competition too, and we all know how much of a chance anyone from “competition” had or has in WWE “proper.” Shoot, they are still bringing in WCW legends just to job, so…???????

      • James says:

        In other words, you STILL have to be a WWE creation to get a chance.

      • Guest says:

        Remembering guys like Steve Austin, Triple H, Undertaker, The Dudley Boyz, Rob Van Dam, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Chris Jericho, Eddie Guerrero, Chris Benoit, and Ric Flair just to name a few there have been a few guys from competing promotions that got their chance.

        • Jextoo says:

          Key word is “got.” The past tense is very relevant here.

          I knew they weren’t going to use Sting right. I hate that he even went to WWE. The only good thing is the money he gets. The current WWE crowd of kids, casuals, and WWE-focused smarks won’t remember him when he’s gone.

          • Guest says:

            Given how dude is a 56 year old wrestler who debuted in the 80’s in a long dead promotion and became a star in another dead promotion then promptly wasted the last 12 years or so wrestling for crappy promotion that refuses to die that’d be understandable.

    • Jay says:

      I am fine with Ascension’s burial because of their “WHAT A JOKE!” promo. They were going for heel heat and they got legit heat. I’m not even sure JBL was directed to bury them; I think he chose to.

      Even in NXT, The Ascension was nothing more beyond an awesome entrance. Once they started working, they were terrible.

      • dennett316 says:

        Why would you be OK with that? The promo was written for them, not by them. If Vince wanted to bury someone, it should be his “creative” team. The Ascension did what they were told, and then got very publicly shat on for it when Vince’s bi-polar disorder kicked in and he had a hissy fit.

        That’s why it’s so galling when Vince and Co wheel out the tired old “brass ring” shit. It’s hard for talent to grab that brass ring when they’re tied down as much as WWE talent is.

    • Guest says:

      Actually people didn’t really care for the Ascension even before they got buried by all those older tag-teams they were essentially crapping on all anyone could ever say about them was how much they were ripping off the L.O.D.

  10. James says:

    I know we try to stay away from too much that’s “real life,” but the fact that we had many major losses in the wrestling community is pretty damn crappy to say the least. (as has been the case in recent years, entertainment deaths in general have been big this year too) There were the deaths of HOFers and legends such as Dusty, Roddy, and Nick Bockwinkel…but even outside of that were big downers like Tim Roberts, aka the ECW Zombie, and “Fat Frank” from JAPW. Right up to now even with the death of people known by the IWC, like Harry Simon.

    There’s also the fact that there’s no real alternative to WWE still, which would help us as fans and help the WWE itself. Not everyone gets the channels LU and the like are on….then there’s the companies that don’t even try enough or are dead in the water (you thought GFW jobbing out to TNA was bad? Wait till they lose, nay, get BULLIED into oblivion by THE ALMIGHTY PWS. “Who?” you might say? Exactly.)

  11. James says:

    On a smaller scale, other crap is that a monopoly not unlike what WWE did is brewing in the New Jersey circuit. People in the know know what I’m talking about. It doesn’t help that said monopoly is spearheaded by a joint including some of the worst bullies me and my friends ever encountered on the indy circuit. The fact that they still didn’t answer for how they humiliated and harassed my friends publicly, in person and on social media, is also major crap. I have the emails still to this day.

    On the bright side, it motivated me to make a real anti-bullying site on Facebook for the indy circuit.

    As for DeMott…I am not one to say who’s guilty or innocent. But I do know there’s some sore winners out there in the case, and ones who are hypocrites given how they are bullies themselves and how they treat fans at indy shows.

  12. Alexandru says:

    2015 is the worst year for WWE ever period. 1995 was the worst year for wrestling overall considering there were multiple companies and no one was doing good creatively or financially (ECW didn’t come into it’s own until 96). 2015 proves how big of a disaster WCW going out og business was. While they probably could never beat WWE again they were big enough to keep WWE on it’s toes and force them not to be lazy

    • Guest says:

      They didn’t go ouf of business though they were sold off for practically peanuts. Also people who oversell how much of threat WCW was to WWE casually ignored their dominance of WWE lasted for about 80 something weeks and this was after WCW had been an existing entity playing second fiddle to WWE for about 7-8 years.

  13. Artie says:

    Why does everybody hate the “tater tots” line so much? That getting number 3 is like… C’mon. Really? It was not that bad.

    • dennett316 says:

      Because you have a guy who should be a bad ass, who should have his own voice, being forced to regurgitate childish insults that are sub-Cena level. Tater Tots is supposed to be a line to get a guy like Reigns over, that’s supposed to promote a WWE title match that’s supposed to be important and prestigious.
      It’s as cringe-worthy as when Cena wrote “JBL Is Poopy” on that limo. Just asinine writing. The show is PG, that doesn’t mean it needs to be written for toddlers.

  14. Jay says:

    Did I overlook it or did they not include Perro Aguayo Jr.’s in-ring death? I mean, if this were an ALL WWE list, I’d get it, but they included at least one AAA moment.

    Seriously. Should have been #1 as the worst pro-wrestling event this year that I can think of.

    • Autrach Sejanoz says:

      I’m guessing the reason it wasn’t included was because the list focused on more frustrating things, rather than depressing.

    • nauseating says:

      Aguayo’s death was terrible, but it was just a freak accident. There was criticism about how it was handled, especially that he should have been attended to quicker. But the doctors said this would have made no difference. He died instantly due to a stroke caused by fractured vertebrae.
      While unarguably tragic and awful, I don’t think it fits the criteria for this list, IMO.
      It’s more about stupid crap that could have and should have been done better- or not done at all, rather than a random catastrophe.

    • Justin Henry says:

      To give you my view: had I written this in 1999, I’d have ranked the Owen Hart memorial Raw (done for PR), but I would have been iffy on ranking the company keeping Over the Edge going. In the moment, I’d argue that nobody was thinking clearly, and for good reason.

  15. Russ says:

    I agree with a good amount of this… But the 2015 Royal Rumble, the match itself wasn’t great for sure, but the whole thing wouldn’t have been so bad had fans not become babies. You can’t have a just back from injury Bryan go right into mania when you don’t know if he’s s health will hold up. Surprise it didn’t, other than that, I agree with alot of this, but I still watch, because I respect the dudes that go out here and bust there ass to entertain me.

    .

    • dennett316 says:

      If you truly respect them, you should demand better for them. Fair comment regarding Bryan’s condition, but there was no need for the match to be such a boring slog, with two boring immobile lumps tossing exciting talent over the side like sacks of spuds.
      It wasn’t booked to make Reigns look stronger – as he had a pretty weak showing all in all – but it WAS booked to make talent talent like Ambrose, Wyatt, Ziggler etc. look weaker than him. The “action” was tepid, the pacing sucked, it was just a bad, bad match. No wonder the crowd turned.

    • Velvet Al says:

      You’d think that WWE would have learned from the 2014 Rumble backlash that the way they booked Bryan in this year’s Rumble was sure to have a similar reaction. Maybe they thought his fanbase had fizzled out. They would’ve been better off saving his return for Raw the night after.

      • Guest says:

        No the true lesson they didn’t learn was booking two Royal Rumbles back to back in Pennsylvania.

        It’s like they didn’t factor in just how spoiled and whiny wrestling fans in that state can be eventhough pretty much everyone’s aware how those crowds can be.

    • Adam says:

      “You can’t have a just back from injury Bryan go right into mania when you don’t know if he’s s health will hold up.”

      Trips in 2002 – but aside from that, I’m with Cornette. If they really didn’t see it coming, after 2014’s Rumble, then they’re too stupid to be running the product. They could have simply not put Bryan in the match. They could have structured the match not to be such a mess, with their intentionally deflating the audience early and hoping they’d pop for the golden boy out of desperation. They could have just played I Love Lucy re-runs, that would have been a better use of airtime.

    • Craig says:

      It would’ve been that bad, because it didn’t magically become bad because the fans crapped all over it. The fans crapped all over it because it was horrible.

  16. Sean O says:

    So…..is there no gooker award this year? Sounds like it was so bad a year, nothings worth inducting

    • RD Reynolds says:

      Of course we will be inducting a Gooker. Voting will start early January.

      • I'm Not Using My Real Name says:

        Smackdown falls on New Year’s Eve. Who knows what horrible last minute thing might pop up to include in the Gooker voting? I wouldn’t be surprised to see Good Baby New Year (Mark Henry) vs Bad Baby New Year (Bo Dallas)

  17. M says:

    I could easily see Gang Warz: Female Edition winning the Gooker, but I don’t get why the “fluff” pieces like Jericho’s interviews and ESPN coverage are listed. Does everything newsworthy about WWE have to be negative?

  18. Steve says:

    “Goodwill?”

    Can you explain how pushing Roman into over drive and making it even worse than it was all year is somehow goodwill just because 2 crowds cheered it?

  19. Ice T says:

    how bout december 28 raw where vince got arrested. he looked really old and tired. his voice so grumbly that he sounded like he was a 80 year old cancer patient. or a chain smoker who just woke up from a night of all night drinking.or that geeky bob backland wannabee look he has now.. its sad seeing him now

    • Si says:

      If we’re going to mention Vince’s arrest, surely the angle is more “rich white people claim police brutality on day of Tamir Rice verdict” than “old man looks old”.

  20. Mav says:

    Sting jobbing to HHH will always be terribly upsetting to me.

    You could see this happening a mile away and then it did.

    Had to piss on that one WCW star that never bowed to Vince.

    So petty. So trite.

    As if Hunter needed to win this match.

    He’ll always be in a power position.

    So, so bad.

    HHH and Stephanie are going to slowly sink the WWE.

    • Raging_Demons says:

      Yeah we over at “The Mike Check Show” saw this coming so we covered it. Basically this happened:

      Robocop arrived at the “Check Home” thinking Mike Check was Triple H trying to save Sting.
      Terminator was sent by Aurora Rose LeVesque to save Sting from daddy
      Doc Brown tried to recruit Mike Check thinking he was CM Punk so he can save us from Hunter, denied
      Huey The Wrestlecrap Ghoul gave us a Hunter warning.
      The Doctor & Clara arrive mostly for Mike Check to hit on Clara and for The Doctor to find a certain Sledgehammer

      But in the end Triple H tried to bury Mike Check but Rhonda Rousey saved Mike from Hunter then made Mike Check tap.

    • Guest says:

      I was always of the mind the Sting-HHH feud was supposed to continue on after Wrestlemania since neither guy going over the other after that one match was going to have any benefits. But unfortunately all anyone gets hung up is “Triple H pinned Sting at Wrestlemania and then they shook hands after the match *RAGE*”.

    • Adam says:

      I’m torn on whether their match was Vince or Hunter’s idea – Hunter, I could see wanting to follow old continuity enough to not have the nWo help Sting for no reason… but having all his old buddies in both factions run-in just so they could get Wrestlemania appearance pay? Definitely seems like the kind of thing he’d book.

  21. Induct The Limo Explosion Already says:

    Uh, WM31 was a mess.

  22. Nel says:

    The problem with WWE is that is just another company that lets the social media to trace their roadmap. WWE is Tumblr, Twitter, YouTube, TMZ, everything but wrestling.

    this is just SJWs trying to make their own Attitude Era, but with feminism and battles against cancer. Nonsense.

    • Agent 13 says:

      Yep, ’cause nothing sez “feminist plot” like short shorts, a pink butterfly-shaped “Divas” belt and the “Rack Attack”.

    • Guest says:

      LOL partnering with the Susan G. Komen foundation and the Divas Revolution has nothing to do with feminism by that logic whenever they’re being sponsored by Mountain Dew or Doritos they’re doing it for the Dudebros. Seems Gamergate also had a rough year 2015 as well.

    • KatieVictoriasSecret says:

      But feminists hate Komen for doing just what Justin says they do in the article – pinkifying, sexualizing and merchandising cancer.

      • Guest says:

        Is it feminists doing that or is sexists who don’t like the period of time every year where WWE changes their ring ropes to pink and white and has some superstars selling a pink and whie variants of their ring gear to coincide with breast cancer awareness month. Because I’m pretty sure it’s more of the latter.

    • Jextoo says:

      O_o Feminism and SJWs don’t mean what you think they mean.

  23. Doc 902714 says:

    Sting in 2015 – every bit of it. has my vote. Not that I agree with all of the points that were made but I would be intrigued to see how it would be presented should it win the Gooker.

  24. Skinnyfatass says:

    Two things regarding TNA that should really have been on the list

    1 – Davey Richards, two weeks after EVOLVE withdrew him from one of their shows after he suffered a concussion, wrestled over 10 matches in the July tapings that took TNA to the end of their run on Destination America. There were quite a few matches that went over 10 minutes, and Richards still wrestled his usual style that draws on Benoit and the Dynamite Kid. I hope that Davey does not go down the same road.

    And speaking of DA –

    2 – The insistance that Kurt Angle be pushed hard and crowned TNA World Champion (a title that is no longer recognised as a World Title by PWI). Not only did it cut the first face World Title run of Bobby Roode short, Kurt Angle is a shadow of his former self and had to be carried through matches by Bobby Lashley. But despite being one bad bump away from a wheelchair, DA brass wanted the strap on Angle.

    Of course, Art did say that no wrestling company with a conscience would let Angle continue to wrestle against doctor’s orders with a body so ravaged by injuries.

    • Andy J says:

      If we’re gonna go with something from TNA that should have been in there, how about Eric Young stealing Chris Melendez’s leg? I appreciate the thinking behind it was to get EY over as a thoroughly nasty character but it just all felt so tasteless and awkward. A shame really because EY’s heel character has actually been one of the better things about Impact this year apart from that.

      • Skinnyfatass says:

        Yeah, that was pretty bad. I thought that at one stage The Sarge was going to get Gowened by Young, but thankfully that didn’t happen.

        But as bad as that was, putting the belt on the now battered Angle, and having Richards wrestle over ten matches two weeks after having his bell rung fierce were way worse, and show just how little TNA care about their talent, as well as how often TNA were late in paying them.

      • CF says:

        I’m surprised this site doesn’t have an “Eric Young WrestleCrap Emeritus” page; can you remember the last time — can you remember *any* time — Eric Young *wasn’t* being [s]addled with a rubbish gimmick?

  25. A.R. says:

    Why the dig on Trump on number 45? If they google him, what would you think they would find? There was no reason to include him on your list.

    • dennett316 says:

      Bigotry, sexism, hate-mongering, adulterer. He’s also an idiot, but that’s neither here nor there.

    • t pain says:

      have you been living under a rock? banning muslims. calling mexicans drug dealers and rapists. making fun of a disabled person. ets etc

  26. Alex Kahrs says:

    Fun story re: #30…I was at the Staples Center for that Raw, and I gotta say, that tug o war ending was possibly worse for the live crowd. At least you guys didn’t get the REALLY awkward ending: title gets pulled away from Lesnar and drops to the canvas, and Lesnar and Heyman pick the title up on the way out the ring. That’s it. The TV audience was spared this with the fade to black, lol.

    That said, I really enjoyed seeing Raw live for the first time ever. Bad booking aside, the live experience was enough to stand on its own for entertainment for me.

  27. Geoff says:

    Only one person can summon lightning the right way and it’s Taker. But the man is old and his lightening is going limp so I guess they are trying to pass a limp light to the next generation. Problem is, Bray is not only making it limp but he can’t go the distance in keeping it up like Taker did in his prime.

  28. Rob says:

    The James Storm/Mickie James debacle should be right up there. That train angle was so bad that James Storm, Magnus and Mickie James all wound up leaving the company after that. And Josh Mathews as the voice of TNA is just horrible. As a result, Michael Cole is no longer the worst lead commentator in wrestling. That title now belongs to that douchebag Josh Mathews.

  29. Emerson Witner says:

    At the beginning you mentioned three things from 2014 you changed your mind on and then mentioned 2. What was the third?

    James Storm trying to kill Mickie James to death is always going to be #1. I also loved when Dixie threatened to sue Dave Meltzer when he broke the story about Destination America canceling TNA.

  30. The Million Cent Man says:

    I can’t decide what I think should win the Gooker, the 2015 Royal Rumble match or Sting in 2015. I’ll be surprised if they don’t get nominated. Either one would be a deserving “winner”.

  31. Mister Forth says:

    For me, the two things that make the Diva Revolution the most deserving of the spot were the facts that: 1) most fans mainly wanted someone to end Nikki’s reign no later than the RAW where she ties AJ Lee. Instead, she lost by DQ after a Dusty Rhodes Memorial Finish. This pathetic booking idea was possibly spite by WWE, but it got no real anger from the Brooks clan. Instead, fans raged at them for basically repeating the Goldberg in 2003 idea of giving Charlotte the belt long after it stopped mattering. 2) The fans didn’t just want longer matches for them, but also better writing. Fans wanted feuds other than Woman A betrays Woman B. Instead, they just got the same mess just with good wrestlers having to sell it. I’m not sure if this angle will be winning the Gooker in Jan/Feb, but it certainly deserves a high vote

    • Guest says:

      If people wanted Charlotte to take the belt from Nikki for that reason alone then that’s even worse than the unnecessary dusty finish they went with on that episode of Raw that preceded Charlotte taking the title off Nikki a few days later at the PPV.

      • Mister Forth says:

        Not that that was the only reason, but fans wanted to see someone win in a manner that showed the division wasn’t Total Divas: The Wrestling Match. Having Nikki set the record in such a manner showed that no matter who holds the belt, it’s still her show.

        • Guest says:

          That’s weird when you remember how everyone constantly shits on the show demonstrating how little they care for it and the talent featured in the show in the process.

  32. Agent 13 says:

    “The antics of the NXT crowds at Full Sail took the same trajectory: amusing at first, self-wanking eventually.”

    Eventually? The NXT crowd is just the old self-congratulatory Universal Orlando TNA crowd moved across town with handful of Fail Sail employees added. All they’re missing is Towel Guy sitting center screen.

  33. Justin says:

    What a sh*tshow WWE was this year. Aside from NXT being awesome, WWE presented almost nothing of value. Thank god for New Japan is all I can say.

  34. Velvet Al says:

    I foresee that there will be no apologies or changing of minds about any of these entries come time for next year’s entries. Any redeeming qualities any of these could possibly have is if 2016 sucks so hard, these entries look tame by comparison.

  35. Evan Waters says:

    #44 would have been fine had it not been followed almost immediately by Kane and the Undertaker defeating the Wyatts as payback. Bray stealing UT’s lightning and Kane’s fire should have been a passing of the torch, establishing a “new” supernatural character on a tier with the past ones. Instead he was buried.

    #43, similarly, would not have been a problem had Wyatt won any big matches.

  36. Jerichoholic Ninja says:

    I almost think there should be Gooker categories, because much of the worst stuff is quite different and many seem to differ over whether the Gooker should be for a one night event, or a longer storyline.

    For example, there could be Worst Match or Show (ie. Rumble 2015), Worst Storyline (ie. Divas Revolution), Worst Character (ie. Demon/Corporate Kane) and Worst Segment (ie. Storm killing Mickie. If this had been done in a previous year it would be a favourite, but TNA was a write-off this year).

    Of course, it’s kind of a moot point, since most of this stuff will be inducted anyway.

  37. Guest says:

    Couple of things I think should’ve been on this list

    – The Barrett-R Truth feud which WWE felt the need to blow off two separate times.

    – The 2015 Survivor Series match if there’s a case to be made why PPV’s designed around gimmicks should be scrapped, this year’s match is a good reason why particularly the last few minutes of it which saw the New Day abandon Sheamus leaving him to take on 3 guys by himself predictably Sheamus get’s beat.

    – Sheamus & Reigns poor booking since coming back on the card WWE has forgotten that there was a time when Sheamus made a good monstrous heel so what do they do instead book him like a joke ultimately culminating in him winning the MITB briefcase this year dispute his horrible booking. Reigns constantly being teased with winning the championship only to have it pulled away from him at the last minute the first time at Wrestlemania 31 was one thing the second at Survivor Series….too much.

    – Naomi & Nikki Bella’s meaningless heel turns this year. Naomi is an entrant into a battle royal to decide who will challenge for Nikki Bella’s title Naomi loses the match to Paige decides to lose her shit and beats Paige up (and in front of the hometown crowd no less). Leading to Naomi replacing Paige in the title match against Nikki Bella which she goes on to lose. Around this time Naomi enlists the services of Tamina Snuka (like AJ Lee did before her) to feud with the Bellas eventually Naomi and Tamina decide to work on Nikki and Brie which leads to Paige rushing the ring and getting revenge on Naomi, Naomi gets taken out without much effort. So you figure Paige would just celebrate with the Nikki or leave the ring after a bit of uneasiness (due to two being a feud months prior). Nope Paige decides to take Nikki out two despite both being faces and not having a legit reason to do so. This then segues into another poorly put together Nikki Bella heel turn which then sets up an awful feud between her and Paige……before eventually seguing again into another storyline……..which was already put on the list.

    • Justin Henry says:

      true story: I had Barrett vs. Truth in the 19th spot before realizing I’d forgotten Truth vs. Stardust. So I just said fuck it, and combined it into one big “Truth is a broad idiot” entry. As luck has it, when he WMD’d himself this past Monday, I laughed my head off because the timing was perfect. Go figure.

      • Guest says:

        I wish they’d stop having Truth at like a emotionally unstable/mentally disturbed individual…..but that’s as bout as likely as them not having Santino act like a cartoonish Italian.

        • Justin Henry says:

          Santino’s idiocy generally has better timing behind it, and (as a heel) he had some truly brilliant moments. Truth’s just comes off as embarrassing, like his promo where he said that if he were king, he would outlaw spiders, with a big Irish setter grin. I’m okay with goofy characters, but sometimes it gets too broad.

          • Guest says:

            Or in Santino’s and Truth’s case it’s a gimmick that wears thin and gets redundant after about 3-5 years of doing as both a heel and a face.

  38. AK says:

    One thing that I am surprised didn’t make the list, although it can be attributed slightly to #17 is Stephanie McMahon’s slap-a-thon she has been doing over the past few months (and will probably continue into 2016, so maybe that’s why it wasn’t included this year).

    Naturally every male personality she slaps can’t do anything in retaliation but for a product that is trying to promote a PG environment, let me paraphrase a quote from the Simpsons “They didn’t just crossing that line, they threw up on it!”. It doesn’t matter whether she slaps a Superstar, an Announcer or heck I wouldn’t put it past the WWE to have her slap a fan (okay, maybe a plant) and nobody can put Miss Levesque in her place for her actions.

    Also seems to me that Steph is potato’ing everybody she comes into contact with. If this was virtually anybody else in the organization doing this, they’d probably be fired. Maybe WWE is hoping/waiting for Ronda Rousey to answer the call and finish what she started at Wrestlemania but now with Rousey having a MMA record similar to that as the Undertaker at Wrestlemania, I wouldn’t put it past Vince and co. to have Rousey job to Steph because well..WWE logic.

  39. ChrisV says:

    The Vince getting arrested angle from RAW needs to make the list now. Leave it to WWE to put one of the worst stories of the year on the final RAW of the year.
    It’s such a great way to make fans look forward to 2017.
    That opening segment was just so horrible on every level. I cringed watching the whole thing.
    That was one of the worst RAWs I can remember.
    Even the announcers had given up. They misunderstood two plot points. JBL had to correct Cole about Vince faking the neck injury.

    I think the MexAmerica thing needs to be higher. I was waiting to see that inducted on here at some point. Another cringe inducing segment everytime they were on TV. At least they dropped it quickly.
    It made zero sense. Zeb would just cut random promos. No one knew what it was supposed to be about. Del Rio looked like he’d rather be anywhere else.
    Greatest of all was that guys talking about “hatred being bad” were heels. So awful!

  40. Roland Smitts says:

    What’s so insanely infuriating about #21 is: WWE allows so much to slide from other Hall of Famers, like Donald Trump, a man who has OPENLY shown his racism and bigotry to the world. On a presidential candidate stage. Hulk Hogan said a lot of messed up garbage in a “messed up garbage” state of mind, at what was the absolute low point of his personal life. So WWE deserts him, the wrestler who – as much as smarks may not dig him cos he didn’t always put workrate darlings over – made WWE famous casuals recognize more than any other. If you guys don’t see the petty hidden agenda in all this, you’re not paying attention. Vince never truly got over the steroid trial & the WCW war. Probably never really wanted Hogan back, and only let it be so in order to make him job to the Rock. Then saw he could make some nostalgia cash off him, & begrudgingly let him stick around (he will have you believe Steve Austin is a bigger star. Only in his own warped mind. And I like Austin). But ifVince had his way, Hogan would have been wiped away long before this was made public by Gawker. Vince just used it as an excuse. Disgusting. No justifying what Hogan said in that moment of screwed up anger…but really, his contract should have been just suspended. If this was Cena, WWE no doubt would have said something like “WWE believes in free speech for all of its contracted entertainers and superstars, however it does not always reflect WWE’s corporate world views. We at WWE stand by John Cena.” Yuck.

    • Guest says:

      The difference between Trump and Hogan though is that while Trump has said many offensive things about a variety of people over the last twenty something years or so he’s never once said the N word and most definitely not in the same context. As for what measures they should’ve taken regarding Hogan’s comments there was literally no easy way out of that if he had just made a stereotypical comment about blacks that’d be one thing but he dropped the “N” word in a deliberately spiteful way which as we all know is a good way to kill your career. Lastly I can assure you if Cena did the same thing he’d be let go just the same as Hogan I don’t know where you’re getting you’re assumption that’d they stick with Cena if he made the same comments Hogan made just because he brings in revenue for the company.

      • Roland Smitts says:

        I didn’t even mention that WWE has exhibited racist implications in TV angles, such as Vince dropping an N-bomb of his own. Excusing it as “scripted entertainment” is frustrating beyond belief; even putting it out there in THAT context is highly offensive. It’s not like Booker T would have had a say in that situation; say “no I won’t do that” and you’ll probably wind up demoted or terminated. The Orange Goblin spoke behind closed doors in an emotionally impaired state (divorce, thoughts of suicide & doing crazy sex tapes with some dude’s wife…nah, you likely aren’t doing too good). Gawker released that out of spite. I’m sorry but imo, if Hogan stood in the ring, pointed at every black lady & gentleman in the crowd and threw N-bombs at them, then yeah, flush him out. I just feel the circumstances should have been considered. I see no reason to believe he’s a legitimate racist; speaking without thinking rationally, out of anger, yes. Racist, no way. I said “Vince is the real racist” because he uses his platform to broadcast his racism, then hides it behind “Oh that’s all scripted enterainment.” That doesn’t make it okay, McMahon. Re: Cena: I have a hard time believing they’d take their golden boy and send him packing. I bet you feel they’d do it to HHH or Steph too. Forget it. I feel Vince long wanted to do this to Hogan and Gawker gave him the excuse he long wanted.

        • Guest says:

          The difference with that segment though and the Hogan thing is that Vince’s segment was a comedy segment designed to try and make Vince come off as being hip and current along with being used in familiar/friendly tone. Whereas the Hogan thing was Hogan venting his legit feelings about young black men dating his daughter even if he said it out of anger and in private it was still wrong just like when Paula Deen and Micheal Richards said it.

        • Roland Smitts says:

          In no universe is that word acceptable in am entertainment setting in any tone, unless in a historical storytelling perspective of some sort. Also we do not know if that was the Goblin’s legit feelings or not. I can only state my opinion, which is, they were not. And I stand by that opinion, no matter how I may feel about the guy.

          • Guest says:

            You tell Mel Brooks and many white and black TV producers about how using the N-Word isn’t acceptable in any tone. Also if those weren’t his legit feeling he wouldn’t have been caught saying it since last I checked black people are typically referred to as black or as African American even when being mentioned negatively….using the N-Word to refer to black people has a clear and obvious intent. If you wanna pretend that Hogan’s words aren’t a smoking gun that’s fine but it’s a bit naive in certain respects.

      • Roland Smitts says:

        One more on Cena: John Cena never testified against McMahon in a government trial. Nor did Cena ever compete in a rival promotion, head on head with Vince. Vkbce took all of that stuff with Hogan very, very personal (even though it was Hogan’s testimony that got Vince off the hook, and Hogan – and every other WCW wrestler – had the right to work wherever they wanted. It’s just business). Trust it, if Vince didn’t think he could milk a few bucks out of Hogan later on & make him do a few jobs on the way (remember the blood-soaked job he did for Lesnar?), he wouldn’t have. He’d rather see him wiped out, imo. Gawker gave him the ammo.

        • Guest says:

          If Vince took that as personally as you insist then why did he find himself making up with the likes of Bruno Sammartino and Eric Bischoff one guy who had been publicly critical of Vince for years and the other who tried to put Vince out of business.

          Like I said earlier, before lobbying such claims you might want to back them up since all it does is make you look desperate to prove a point you can’t prove and wrestling fans do enough of this wild mass guessing enough as is.

          • Roland Smitts says:

            We are talking about a man who was very much a best friend and close business partner of McMahon, the man who helped him build his WWE into what it is now. And that’s no disrespect to Bruno, who was an absolute titan in his day and a true sports hero. Bischoff becoming GM was another example of Vince showing off his WCW trophy case. Neither of these are anywhere remotely the same.

            I provided sufficient proof of Vince being the real racist. Using his TV platform to display it, hiding behind “entertainment.” It doesn’t stop with the N-bomb. Countless examples of demeaning ring personas depicting black performers, storylines doing the same…you can find many of these examples on Google if you take time to research. Don’t kid yourself . Vince McMahon Jr. is a filthy racist.

            • Guest says:

              Ummm no they’re just as awkward and troublesome as Hogan testifying against Vince in a steroid case things that Vince forgave them all for.

              But you keep insisting that this thing with Hogan was motivated by Vince wanting to settle scores when nothing you’ve said corroborates that. And hate to break this too you but Samba Simba, The Nation Of Domination, Crime Tyme are not viable examples of demeaning ring personas disparaging black people and that storyline with Triple H and Booker T while stupid and unnecessary in certain respects wasn’t demeaning either.

              If anyone’s kidding themselves it’s you continuing to cite nonsense of Vince being a racist ias a crutch to make a point you haven’t done a very good job of backing up.

      • Jextoo says:

        Uh, just because you’ve never heard Trump SAY the n-word doesn’t mean that he doesn’t use it and doesn’t see minorities as their respective racial slurs. He’s shown that he DOES feel that minorities are said respective racial slurs and have still talked about them in such a way that he’s done everything BUT call them the things he REALLY wants to say.

  41. Thomas Moffatt says:

    Sad to see the way Josh Matthews has gone – always thought he was a better announcer than Cole.

    Miz v Sandow was poorly finished – thought you might have mentioned the Super Powers (Axelmania and Macho Mandow), lame gimmick but Curtis Axel who finally found a good gimmick had it taken away in the Hulk Hogan debacle.

    On the Divas Revolution – think this one has officially flopped with WWE as Nipple H is no longer touted as the ‘genius’ behind it, instead Paige rants about it.

    Sheamus as WWE champ would be on my list…

  42. Raven7309 says:

    “THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!!” for putting the Warrior Award debacle on the list. When I first heard that they were using it to induct some random child who none of us had ever heard of before into the HOF, I almost simultaneously vomited and threw my remote through my tv at the same time. No offense to the Michalek family, but what exactly made Connor so “worthy” of induction??!! Obviously a rhetorical question, cheap and free publicity for the WWE. If they want to continue inducting terminally ill children into the HOF in the future, more power to them, but could they at least not make it so blatantly self serving amd transparently manipulative??!!

    As far as Hogan’s racist comments amd WWE’s reaction to them, I’ve got two words for you: “SAMBA SIMBA”.

    • Guest says:

      “but what exactly made Connor so “worthy” of induction??!!”

      Let’s me remind you of the fact this is the same HOF that features the likes of Drew Carey, Donald Trump, Pete Rose, & Diesel if people are really that upset about a deceased child who suffered with cancer and who also was a WWE fan being inducted into the hall of fame people seriously need to grow the hell up.

      “cheap and free publicity for the WWE.”

      Between them inducting celebrities and public figures into the HOF like I mentioned above they also have Wrestlemania and Summerslam serving the same purpose…….but apparently it’s worse when they do it with a kid who died of cancer……ironic huh?

      “I’ve got two words for you: “SAMBA SIMBA”.

      Having Teddy Atlas dress up in a stereotypical “African Warrior” costume isn’t as offensive as smarks like the think it is stupid especially with Roddy Piper shooting on the whole thing during Teddy’s redubt but offensive? no.

  43. Raven7309 says:

    Correction: “SABA SIMBA”.

    • Roland Smitts says:

      Again, just Vince using a convenient excuse to do what he truly long wanted to do: wipe Hulk Hogan out of his company’s existence. Never got over the past and never will. Sad too. Vince is the real racist here.

      • Guest says:

        Yeah because Vince should’ve defended and excused a guy for doing saying something incredibly offensive in private that went public even though there was no way for him to do such a thing without hurting his own company. Also if you’re going to make implications you might wanna back them up with proof instead of making unfounded assumptions. If Vince really hated Hogan as much as you think he did he would’ve never given him the position he gave him after he quit TNA.

        • Roland Smitts says:

          As said prior, this was at the lowest point of Hogan’s life, a moment of talking a lot of ****ed up trash in a “****Ed up trash” state of mind. IMO it is not at all a true reflection of the Goblin’s views. Vince & anyone with any real sense would know that. Vince just took advantage.

          • Guest says:

            Even if you want to insist that Vince took advantage of something (for reasons you still can’t really prove) that doesn’t really change the fact that Hogan put Vince in awkward position of which there was no easy out.

        • Roland Smitts says:

          A guy like Trump has said far, far, far worse on a global stage…and WWE has done NOTHING to remove his HoF profile page. Snuka’s was only taken down after a couple of people in the press began to ask why they took Hogan’s down so darn quick but Superfly was still there. Not to mention, WWE’s blatantly racist tint on some TV angles & storylines over the years (Vince saying “n****r” was “scripted entertainment” …. Which makes it completely OK. Gotcha. Idiots). The funny thing about all this is, I’m not even that much of a fan of Hogan’s. Never really had much of an opinion on him tbh. No denying he’s WWE’s biggest star in history however. And imo deserved far better from the company he & Vince made world famous. Again, if Cena or HHH did this, WWE would be tripping over itself to defend them.

        • Carl Prentice says:

          You don’t have to like someone to do business w/them.

  44. Scrooge McSuck says:

    Its never easy to please a lot of people with such a wide range of topics to touch on, including controversial subjects. Thank you for the entertaining list.

    MINUS. 5. STARS!

    Sorry, just had to get that out of my system after reading about that Villanos match.

  45. Geoff says:

    I come here to read the articles but more importantly I read the comments section. The comments alone are why I get up in the morning and say: “Today, this is going to be a great day.”

  46. FistoftheMFK says:

    I just remembered Snoopamania. The punchline was Snoop Dog with his noodle arms throwing Axelmania over the ropes. Thag should have been on this list top 10.

  47. Thomas Moffatt says:

    And with the announcement of the XFC it looks like the WBF and XFL will have a new buddy…. 2016 Gooker waiting to happen?

  48. Ze Frenchie says:

    So, is Bray trying to steal Undertaker’s thunder, literally? Cause I don’t know if he urn’d it or not. (I’ll see myself out the door)

  49. Dick Dastardly says:

    I love how you act like the “Tater Tots” line caused the ratings for that episode to sink.

    You know, considering how it was right at the end of the show, so the ratings were pretty much already where they were going to be.

    Also, the fans in the crowd was chanting “Tater Tots”, but I guess that doesn’t matter, right?

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