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Goldust Teams With Mandy Rose for Mixed Match Challenge

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Goldust’s new partner for WWE’s Mixed Match Challenge has been revealed and it is none other than Absolution member and fellow Raw superstar Mandy Rose.

During the latest episode of the MMC, Goldust announced Rose was his new partner with their team name being “Rose Gold.”

On social media, WWE announced Goldust and Rose would face the husband and wife team of Smackdown Live superstars Naomi and Jimmy Uso on the Feb. 6 episode.

Goldust was originally supposed to team with former Divas Champion Alicia Fox for the tournament. However Fox suffered a broken tailbone and is expected to be out of action for a few months. The injury also prevented her from competing in the Women’s Royal Rumble match on Sunday.

This pairing of Goldust and Rose provides a new dynamic for the Challenge and it will be interesting to see how they work together as a team. Rose is a relatively new face to the Raw roster, spending time in NXT before introduced to the main roster, while Goldust has a wealth of experience and knowledge he can pass on to his teammate.

The winning team of the Mixed Match Challenge will earn $100,000 for the charity of their choice. Goldust and Rose’s charity is Hire Heroes USA, which nonprofit organization that empowers U.S. military members, veterans and military spouses to succeed in the workforce.

Goldust and Rose are one of six teams representing the RAW brand, which is currently 3-0 in the tournament. The team of Sasha Banks and Finn Balor defeated Smackdown Live’s Shinsuke Nakamura and Natalya in the first episode of MMC. In the second week, Intercontinental Champion The Miz and Asuka won their first-round match against Money in the Bank winner Carmella and New Day’s Big E.

On this week’s episode, Raw Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss and Braun Strowman defeated Becky Lynch and Sami Zayn to advance to the next round.

When the MMC was first announced, fans were a bit skeptical because of it airing on Facebook Live.

However the tournament has brought some excitement to WWE programming. The different pairings are fun to watch, whether it is Charlotte Flair “switching” robes with her MMC partner Bobby Roode or Banks and Balor coming up with the name “Demon Boss.” Lynch and Zayn have also had some fun interactions leading up to their match, including Zayn trying to turn the Lasskicker to the heel side.

Another pairing that has grabbed fans’ attention is Strowman and Bliss. The duo worked well together during their match, with Bliss hitting her Twisted Bliss off Strowman’s shoulders. The two complimented each other, before announcing they were “going all the way” and winning the MMC. What’s fun about all of this, is fans get to see Strowman, who is really funny, have a soft spot for his partner. 

WWE is only a few weeks into the MMC, but all signs point to it being a hit and hopefully the company will create more tournaments with unique concepts that take their superstars outside of the realms of Raw and Smackdown Live.

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WWE Smackdown vs. Raw: Who won this week? January 7, 2019

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The Good

For Raw, the main event between Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose for the Intercontinental championship was a great match and a good way to end this rivalry and move forward with both competitors. Ambrose ended up winning after Bobby Lashley interfered and attacked Rollins. This made sense as the show opened with Rollins and Lashley brawling and these two have been at each other for the past few weeks. What’s really good to take out of this is now Rollins can focus on the Royal Rumble and Ambrose can focus on who is next contender is for his championship.

For Smackdown, the push for Shane McMahon and The Miz to go for the tag team championship was an entertaining way to help build this match up at the Royal Rumble. After Shane expressed aggressiveness and prove worthiness to earn a championship match, the Miz tried to impress him by going out there and challenging the Bar to that match by himself. The challenge was accepted and even though that isn’t what Shane meant, they are getting the match that wanted when they first formed.

The Bad

For Raw, the Braun Strowman and Brock Lesnar “face to face” segment fell flat. Strowman struggled on his delivery of insults to Lesnar, and the “face to face” was more of just Lesnar walking around the ring over and over again without getting in Strowman’s face. At this point, anybody but Brock Lesnar needs to hold the Universal championship in order to give it a more important feel. 

For Smackdown, there was nothing they had that was really too bad. Smackdown was able to give proper time for all the rivalries they are building up. 

The Final Verdict

Smackdown has been hitting on all the right cylinders with their shows for a while now. Once they establish a championship match for the PPV, they give proper buildup and interesting scenarios for each one. Along with that, when Smackdown wants to build up a rivalry just for their show, they are able to do that effectively as well. While Raw does try to do the same, there segments and matches just don’t have the spark that Smackdown is able to deliver. So, with that said, Smackdown had the better show this week. In conclusion, the Royal Rumble is one of the big 4 PPV’s for the year of 2019 for WWE, and so far it looks like everything is going right for Smackdown while Raw is still trying to find their footing.

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Nikki Cross Posts Farewell to NXT

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WWE superstar Nikki Cross is on her way to the main roster, looking likely to land on the SmackDown roster.

Cross posted the following farewell to NXT, where he has spent the past few years, on her social media page:

See you down the road @WWENXT
This isn’t goodbye…we caused far too much mischief and had too much fun doing it for this to be it… pic.twitter.com/0Fk8wEEUzX— Nikki Cross (@NikkiCrossWWE) January 10, 2019

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Matt Hardy Hinting at In-Ring Return

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Matt Hardy may not be done wrestling after all.

The WWE superstar, and future WWE Hall of Famer, had been rumored to been winding down his career and transitioning to a backstage role in 2018 as he was dealing with a number of nagging injuries.

Hardy also posted a couple of videos, and posts on social media, that echoed those intentions, at least they appeared to.

Now, Hardy seems to be hinting at an in-ring return in WWE.

Excited to check out the 1st #RAW of 2019 tonight, especially with all the interesting things that are advertised. Most importantly, I need to see where all the pieces are positioned & moving to on the @WWE chess board.

ALMOST TIME TO GET BACK INTO THE GREAT GAME…. AGEEN! pic.twitter.com/WFXeCiHb1h— #WOKEN, yet #BROKEN, Matt Hardy (@MATTHARDYBRAND) January 8, 2019

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