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March 24, 2012
For all intents and purposes, Friday's edition of Smackdown was the blue brand's go-home show for next weekend's WrestleMania. With a series of events scheduled to begin in Miami next week, Monday's Raw will be the last show taped before the big night next Sunday. That means there will not be a new episode of Smackdown next week. At least not a regular show. In recent years, WWE has used those final hours of television to highlight the WrestleMania week festivities and build final hype for the show.
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By Arda Ocal | August 24, 2013
I caught up with WWE superstar Brodus Clay, who appears in the film "No One Lives," which is out on DVD and Blu-ray now. The topics include how being in movies differs from being a WWE superstar and whether there might be more acting in his future.  
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SPORTS
By Arda Ocal | June 18, 2012
By the end of Sunday's WWEpay-per-view event, there was certainly a way out for John Laurinaitis. The now-former on-screen employee of WWE was fired by Vince McMahon and then sent through the Spanish announce table by a victorious John Cena in his cage match against Big Show. Brodus Clay, who earlier defeated David Otunga by countout, was on hand to make sure "Big Johnny" didn't interfere. The match itself was a typically entertaining match -- what else would you expect from Cena? -- that included an AA on the massive Show, who dazzled the New Jersey crowd with a rare top rope elbow drop.
SPORTS
By Arda Ocal | July 24, 2012
If Raw 1,000 will be the benchmark of the three-hour era of  WWE Raw,  I look forward to the next 1,000 episodes. After all the hype and importance placed on the 1,000th episode of Raw, the show delivered and then some. Between excellent legend returns, well-hyped matches and comedy segments, Raw was entertaining and easy to watch. A scene you wouldn't expect ended the show: CM Punk standing tall over a fallen John Cena and The Rock, the two men who headlined WrestleMania 28. This was especially special given it is a rare moment of weakness for The Rock, who has looked invincible since his WWE return in 2011.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | May 28, 2012
Monday night's Raw was Big Show's stage to showcase and establish his new persona, and in many ways, it worked. While there have been many flaws in the early stages of Show's turn, the man behind the character has embraced the change and done his best to make it work. He had ample time in front of the camera Monday night, and his match with Brodus Clay quickly became a dream match few had even thought of. Show opened Raw with a promo about his motivation. He pointed out some of the bad decisions made by WWE in the wake of his firing, such as his emotional breakdown a few weeks ago being immediately followed by Clay's dancing and John Cena's reaction to John Laurinaitis later in that evening.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | April 24, 2012
With a special three-hour Raw, WWE had an opportunity to present a special go-home show to Sunday's Extreme Rules. That extra hour could mean lengthier matches, or more contests. Instead, the show featured the typical amount of wrestling featured in a routine two-hour episode and an overabundance of promos, segments and video packages, many of which were unnecessary. Perhaps the writers thought this should would actually build toward Extreme Rules, which at this point only has five announced matches, or maybe episodes like this show the lack of depth in the WWE roster.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | July 3, 2012
I despise Teddy Long's performance as a general manager. Anyone who has listened to From the Rafters Radio has heard multiple rants on the subject. But I give the devil his due, and on tonight's Raw, Long played his role well. His on-screen appearances were kept to a minimum, and the decisions he made "off-screen" were a nice way to recognize and even troll the thoughts of the Internet fans, who have long mocked Long's fascination with tag team matches. It's true that Long's character had a hankering for multi-man contests, and that shined at full force tonight, as Raw featured three tag team matches.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | April 6, 2012
The weeks following WrestleMania have traditionally been a time when WWE calls up talent from developmental, giving them a chance on the main roster. This year has proven to be no different, though not all of this week's debuts were superstars new to the main brands. Lord Tensai , a returning A-Train with a new gimmick, returned on Raw, while former Nexus member Skip Sheffield made his comeback on Smackdown, repackaged as Ryback . Damien Sandow , who has been talked about as a standout in WWE's developmental territory Florida Championship Wrestling, also made his debut, albeit in the form of a pre-recorded promo.
SPORTS
By Arda Ocal | July 24, 2012
If Raw 1,000 will be the benchmark of the three-hour era of  WWE Raw,  I look forward to the next 1,000 episodes. After all the hype and importance placed on the 1,000th episode of Raw, the show delivered and then some. Between excellent legend returns, well-hyped matches and comedy segments, Raw was entertaining and easy to watch. A scene you wouldn't expect ended the show: CM Punk standing tall over a fallen John Cena and The Rock, the two men who headlined WrestleMania 28. This was especially special given it is a rare moment of weakness for The Rock, who has looked invincible since his WWE return in 2011.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | April 27, 2012
Part of the fun of professional wrestling is watching the development of certain wrestlers, from their debut through the peaks and valleys of their career. Many grew up watching Rocky Maivia transform into The Rock, or even John Cena develop from the "Doctor of Thuganomics" into "Super Cena. " As a result of my intermittent wrestling habits, I've never had that WWE superstar to latch onto and follow their career. Sure, I've followed guys like Daniel Bryan and Wade Barrett from their beginnings, but there was a part of the connection missing.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | July 3, 2012
I despise Teddy Long's performance as a general manager. Anyone who has listened to From the Rafters Radio has heard multiple rants on the subject. But I give the devil his due, and on tonight's Raw, Long played his role well. His on-screen appearances were kept to a minimum, and the decisions he made "off-screen" were a nice way to recognize and even troll the thoughts of the Internet fans, who have long mocked Long's fascination with tag team matches. It's true that Long's character had a hankering for multi-man contests, and that shined at full force tonight, as Raw featured three tag team matches.
SPORTS
By Arda Ocal | June 18, 2012
By the end of Sunday's WWEpay-per-view event, there was certainly a way out for John Laurinaitis. The now-former on-screen employee of WWE was fired by Vince McMahon and then sent through the Spanish announce table by a victorious John Cena in his cage match against Big Show. Brodus Clay, who earlier defeated David Otunga by countout, was on hand to make sure "Big Johnny" didn't interfere. The match itself was a typically entertaining match -- what else would you expect from Cena? -- that included an AA on the massive Show, who dazzled the New Jersey crowd with a rare top rope elbow drop.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | May 28, 2012
Monday night's Raw was Big Show's stage to showcase and establish his new persona, and in many ways, it worked. While there have been many flaws in the early stages of Show's turn, the man behind the character has embraced the change and done his best to make it work. He had ample time in front of the camera Monday night, and his match with Brodus Clay quickly became a dream match few had even thought of. Show opened Raw with a promo about his motivation. He pointed out some of the bad decisions made by WWE in the wake of his firing, such as his emotional breakdown a few weeks ago being immediately followed by Clay's dancing and John Cena's reaction to John Laurinaitis later in that evening.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | April 27, 2012
Part of the fun of professional wrestling is watching the development of certain wrestlers, from their debut through the peaks and valleys of their career. Many grew up watching Rocky Maivia transform into The Rock, or even John Cena develop from the "Doctor of Thuganomics" into "Super Cena. " As a result of my intermittent wrestling habits, I've never had that WWE superstar to latch onto and follow their career. Sure, I've followed guys like Daniel Bryan and Wade Barrett from their beginnings, but there was a part of the connection missing.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | April 24, 2012
With a special three-hour Raw, WWE had an opportunity to present a special go-home show to Sunday's Extreme Rules. That extra hour could mean lengthier matches, or more contests. Instead, the show featured the typical amount of wrestling featured in a routine two-hour episode and an overabundance of promos, segments and video packages, many of which were unnecessary. Perhaps the writers thought this should would actually build toward Extreme Rules, which at this point only has five announced matches, or maybe episodes like this show the lack of depth in the WWE roster.
SPORTS
By Adam Testa | April 6, 2012
The weeks following WrestleMania have traditionally been a time when WWE calls up talent from developmental, giving them a chance on the main roster. This year has proven to be no different, though not all of this week's debuts were superstars new to the main brands. Lord Tensai , a returning A-Train with a new gimmick, returned on Raw, while former Nexus member Skip Sheffield made his comeback on Smackdown, repackaged as Ryback . Damien Sandow , who has been talked about as a standout in WWE's developmental territory Florida Championship Wrestling, also made his debut, albeit in the form of a pre-recorded promo.
SPORTS
By Arda Ocal | August 24, 2013
I caught up with WWE superstar Brodus Clay, who appears in the film "No One Lives," which is out on DVD and Blu-ray now. The topics include how being in movies differs from being a WWE superstar and whether there might be more acting in his future.  
SPORTS
By Arda Ocal | June 20, 2013
WWE is bringing a live event and an episode of Monday Night Raw back to Maryland. Ocean City will host a live event on July 6 , with Randy Orton, World Heavyweight champion Alberto Del Rio, Dolph Ziggler, Fandango, Jack Swagger and more scheduled to appear. Two days later, WWE's television trucks will roll into 1st Mariner Arena for Raw . Also scheduled to appear at both events is WWE superstar Brodus Clay, who I had a chance to speak with over the phone this week.
SPORTS
March 24, 2012
For all intents and purposes, Friday's edition of Smackdown was the blue brand's go-home show for next weekend's WrestleMania. With a series of events scheduled to begin in Miami next week, Monday's Raw will be the last show taped before the big night next Sunday. That means there will not be a new episode of Smackdown next week. At least not a regular show. In recent years, WWE has used those final hours of television to highlight the WrestleMania week festivities and build final hype for the show.
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