Let’s Give Maria and Mike Kanellis a Chance

Tonight at Money in the Bank, the WWE Universe saw the debut of a new superstar and the return of a familiar face.

“The First Lady of Professional Wrestling” Maria Kanellis made her WWE return – now as a member of the Smackdown brand – and she brought with her, her real-life husband Mike Bennett – or as he is now known, Mike Kanellis. I think JBL said what many of us were thinking “he took her name.”

There were reports that Mike and Maria were in St. Louis and would possibly make their Smackdown debut at the event. After they made their debut, some fans didn’t know what to make of the segment. From their promo, it looks like the couple are going to teach the WWE Universe about love – and by the tone of Maria’s voice, they’re going to be heels.

Although the segment left me with some questions, I liked the confidence in Maria’s voice. She’s no longer the bubbly backstage announcer or Santino’s girlfriend who later shared a kiss with Snoop Dogg. She’s now all business.

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Money In The Bank Win Raises Carmella’s Stock

Note: This is a column I wrote for Creators.

I wasn’t a huge fan of Carmella and James Ellsworth being paired together on “Smackdown Live,” when it first happened in January.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been a fan Carmella’s ever since I saw her in NXT. When she was drafted to Smackdown Live, I thought it was a bit too soon but she’s grown as a performer in the last year. Putting her with Ellsworth didn’t make sense to me for awhile. I thought she had a good run with Nikki Bella and was coming along on her own that she didn’t really need a heater. But since they’ve been together, she’s had some big moments on the blue brand, including mixing it up with John Cena and Bella and pinning women’s champion Naomi twice.

Then I watched tonight’s Money in the Bank pay per view where Carmella won the women’s Money in the Bank ladder match – a first in WWE history – after Ellsworth climbed the ladder, grabbed the briefcase and unceremoniously dropped it in her hands.

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Being Optimistic With Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather

Note: This is a column I wrote for Creators.

Well fight fans, I didn’t think it would happen but it’s been confirmed. UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor will face one of the greatest boxers of all-time – Floyd Mayweather Jr. – in a boxing match at 154 pounds. The match will take place Aug. 26 at the T-Mobile Arena. It’s my mother’s birthday, so I think my sister and my buddies might be able to talk her into going to a restaurant to watch the fight.

In all seriousness, to say worlds are colliding would be an understatement.

In one corner you have the undefeated Mayweather, who will step back into the ring for the first time since his win against Andre Berto in September 2015.

In the other, you have McGregor, the biggest star in MMA, who when we last left him had beaten Eddie Alvarez for the lightweight title, becoming the first fighter in UFC history to simultaneously hold championships in two divisions. – he also held the featherweight belt at the time.

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Max Holloway’s “Blessed” Era Begins – a Fan’s Perspective

Note: This is a column I wrote for Creators.

When interim titleholder Conor McGregor defeated Jose Aldo to unify the UFC featherweight titles in 2015, it marked the end of the Aldo era.

When Max Holloway finished Aldo to unify the 145-pound titles last Saturday at UFC 212, it was the beginning of the “Blessed Era.”

Holloway finished Aldo at UFC 212 in the third round to become the top featherweight in the world. Even being several adult beverages in – a result of finishing a Comic Con Pub Crawl – I was enthralled by the match, a little sad that Aldo lost – he’s one of my favorites – but excited to Holloway win the big on. It was the culmination of a five-year journey for the “Blessed” one that began at UFC 143 where he lost to Dustin Poirier.

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Megan Anderson’s Championship Legacy Begins at Invicta FC 24

Note: This is a column I wrote for Creators.co

There’s an old adage in combat sports – it’s one thing to win a championship but it’s another to successfully defend it. Invicta FC featherweight champion and Australia’s pride and joy Megan Anderson is going to learn this first hand on July 15.

Invicta Fighting Championships announced that Anderson will make her first title defense against undefeated Ukrainian prospect Helena Kolesnyk at Invicta FC 24. This will be Kolesnyk’s first foray in the Invicta cage.

Anderson won the Invicta featherweight title in January when she finished Charmaine Tweet in the second round – a bout that was originally for the interim 145-title. She was promoted to undisputed featherweight champion after former titleholder Cris “Cyborg” Justino opted to compete in the UFC full-time.

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