The Rag Mag, Volume #20: Path of the Warrior II

Greetings, kids — did ya miss me?! Well, I missed you. Glad to be back, blah, blah, blah … pleasantries and all that.

Okay, I’m over it. Let’s get down to business.

The EWA, in what I have to assume is some sort of ratings ploy, is bringing back the fabled Path of the Warrior tournament. This is a tournament in which the winner will be granted a guaranteed contract that they can use at any time, for an instantaneous title shot — for any title they choose.

Allow me to remind you that the original winner of this tournament was Grace Goeren. For those of you that don’t know EWA history quite like I do, this is your chance to become a star. Her cash in against Laura Seton, just minutes after Laura Seton had fought a hellacious match and won the world title, not only solidified Grace as a star, but cemented the newly formed Fallout as one of the most recognizable stables in the history of the EWA. Who else was in the Fallout?! Glad you asked. Oh, just a of girl named Elizabeth Gaunt and a relatively unknown named Sahara. Yes, that Sahara. While Duane Gates was their manager/slave, make no mistake that the unique thing about the Fallout is that they were an all female stable of … insane bitches that made their mark.

While Gaunt has disappeared off the face of the earth and Grace is on hiatus due to injury … Sahara is alive and well. My point is, that cash in not only made Grace a star, but it put Sahara on the map as well.

That’s how big this tournament is.

And that’s how seriously you should take it.

So, since we have a little bit of time here — let’s break down these brackets and make a couple of predictions. While this may show my personal bias for the established stars, let it serve as a wakeup call to the rest of you that want to make a name for themselves.

Don’t squander this opportunity.

Round One.

Fight.

First up in round one, we got Lou vs Yoshida. This is actually a hard one to predict, so I’m going to go out on a limb here and say Yoshida. Yes, I realize Lou is the current EWA Network Champion, and that’s a big deal … but this is the exact kind of opportunity Yoshida has been searching for. Call it one of my dark horse picks, but I think he’s got a good chance here!

Next up, we have Indrid Calder vs Martin Robertson. Gotta give this one to Calder. Why? Strength in numbers. HATE is the most formidable and only remaining “stable” in the EWA, and I see NOTHING orchestrating his “pillars” victories throughout this tournament … but that calls into question, will his soldiers turn on him when the opportunity to cash in presents itself?!

Brytain vs Nikki Caldwell. I haven’t seen Brytain in an EWA ring just yet, so other than older tapes, I’m not quite sure how well she’s going to adapt to the EWA style. With all the problems plaguing Nikki Caldwell right now, I’m gonna just throw a dart at the board here and say Brytain is taking this one.

Dane Preston vs MDM. The battle of the FYA boys should present an interesting scenario considering what’s at stake. Since entering the EWA, both have had similar levels of success, but both have also shows a few cracks in their armor along the way. That being said, I’m going to have to go with our man Murph on this one. Not because I feel he’s any better than Dane, but because I feel he wants it more — besides, it looks to me like Dane is gonna be pretty busy with his personal life and won’t have nearly the time to focus on his wrestling career as MDM does.

Next up we have Jester Smiles vs Josh Kaine. Both formidable opponents, this one might be more even keeled than it appears. Josh was trained by the legendary Sinnocence, after all. But I’m still gonna lean toward Smiles in this one. Josh Kaine just has way too much going on to focus, and that’s the exact kind of scenario in which a veteran like Smiles will shine.

Buck Dresden vs Mojave. Dresden. Easy. Since entering the EWA, Mojave has been stuck beneath his sisters looming shadow, and just hasn’t found a way to emerge from it. I feel this has hurt his confidence in glaring ways, and a world experienced wrestler like Dresden just won’t be stopped by Moe unless the kid can find a way to break free of his family curse.

Sahara vs V. Easy call. Sahara. No offense intended, I just feel V will have too much ring rust to take down a formidable opponent like Sahara at this early juncture of his comeback. Not to mention the hive of HATE will be watching her back, paving her path to the semi-finals, which I will touch on in the next round. Yes, I realize my HATE bias is pouring through here, but c’mon people … we have a unified army going up against a lot of splinter cell solo acts and I just can’t see any other path through this tournament.

PhD vs Sterling. Normally I’d just blurt out Phil Donovan right now, but Sterling seems to be the man of the hour, despite suffering a couple of losses as of late, I just see momentum in this kid. His wheels are still spinning right now, but the second they grip the ground, this kid is gonna be off and running. Then again, every time I figure PhD is done, the guy just comes roaring back. Despite that, I’m gonna stick to my guns here and say Sterling takes this one.

Round 2.

Fight.

This next round is entirely based on my completely made up predictions from round one and entirely based on the current landscape of the EWA. So for those of you who didn’t make it to this round in my own little made up EWA universe here, buck up and fight for it, and maybe you’ll change history that’s yet to be written. 😉

Yoshida vs Calder. Should I laugh now or later? Again, nothing against Yoshida here, but I honestly can’t see HATE being stopped in this tournament. It almost feels designed for them to make the finals, and they’re surely going to do everything within their power to see that it happens, thus protecting the hive. Calder advances.

Brytain vs MDM. Because I haven’t seen enough out of Brytain to know if she’s going to mesh with the EWA style or not, I have to lean toward our man Murph again by default. Of course, my opinion could completely shift after I’ve actually seen her in action, but to this point I’ve simply seen more out of Murph, and as they say, you stick with what you know.

Smiles vs Dresden. This would be a really fun matchup and a rematch of current and former Combat Champions. Again, I have to lean toward Buck Dresden in this one, simply for momentum reasons. Keep in mind that at the upcoming Battlelines 40, they’re already having a rematch for the Combat Championship. So if Jester were to win his title back at 40, this could potentially become Dresden vs Smiles III! Exhilarating stuff. If this happens, I hope they’ll make an exception here and allow this to be a title match as well as a tournament match! Anyway, Dresden is just on fire right now, and I don’t see the Buck train getting derailed just yet…

Sahara vs Sterling. Again, nothing against anyone else, but Sahara’s just got too much momentum (not to mention an entire stable) pushing her here. The HATE train will roll on. Sterling is gonna put up a hell of a fight, but he’s not stopping the Crimson Queen this early in his career.

Round 3.

Fight.

This is the semi-finals, and I know a lot of you are gonna groan when I complete the cycle and predict this tournament ends up being HATE vs HATE. I don’t wanna spend too much time going over these not so bold predictions, since they’re based on nothing other than a feeling, but…

Calder vs MDM. Yes, I see Calder taking this and advancing to the finals.

Sahara vs Dresden. Yes, I see Sahara taking this and advancing to the finals.

I just can’t see any way HATE gets derailed in this tournament as it’s currently presented. They have too much power backing them, and too much weight to throw around for most of these splintered up solo acts to contend. Now, do I think they’re going to advance through the tournament the up and up? Hell no. Sahara and Calder are gonna lie, cheat and steal their way to the finals in order to keep HATE on top of the world.

So, will any of you step up to prevent this VERY POSSIBLE future from occuring?!

We shall see when you light up the EWA Network with some quality content for me to consume.

So, if this scenario was to go down, despite her promises on Social Media that if she were to win this tournament that she’d go after the Network Title — I’m calling bullshit on that. Bull to the Shit, Sahara. This lunatic not only feels she’s already owed a rematch for the World Title, but if she gets this blank check to cash in at a moments notice, you can be damn sure she’s gonna wait in the wings for NOTHING to be on his knees before the Queen Bee of the hive of HATE suddenly emerges and takes what she feels is already rightly hers.

Which is every-fucking-thing.

She will take the World Title AND the House of HATE to call her own.

And what of Calder? Hmmm. Him I actually can’t peg on this…odds are he’d sit on the contract and use it only if HATE somehow lost that title to bring them back to the top of the wrestling world.

So, there you have it folks, The Rag Mag’s not so bold and predictable predictions on the Path of the Warrior II.

Do you feel this is unlikely? Feel free to comment on the Facebook feed when I post it and give us your own opinions! But I do suggest that if you don’t want these predictions to come true, you start strategizing and planning accordingly, because you can be damn sure the House of HATE will be.

Until next time, kiddos — RAG on!