Fashion NFT

Adidas Continues to Innovate into Web3 with NFT Collaborations

In the last week, Adidas has been extremely busy innovating in the web3 space.

The popular apparel brand has partnered with Coinbase, launched their very own POAP NFT, created their own space in The Sandbox, and are now teaming up with two of the most prominent brands in the NFT space—Bored Ape Yacht Club and PUNKS Comic—as well as NFT investor and influencer, Gmoney.

The official announcement of the Adidas, BAYC, Pixel Vault’s PUNKS Comic, and Gmoney collaboration was announced early this morning by said collaborators on Instagram and Twitter. 

This recent stream of collaborations has many excited, including members of the NFT space as well as people who aren’t quite as acclimated to the space. One glance at social posts displays an enormous amount of support from nearly everyone who is aware of these brands and their significance in the space.

Adidas provided just a bit of insight referencing their involvement in the metaverse within the description of their recently released POAP NFT:


This is the first step in our journey to empower the creators of tomorrow to thrive in the Metaverse. A place where anyone can express their most original ideas and be their most authentic selves. It will take some learning, some building and a leap of faith. If you’re already here, show us the way. If you’re new, come and join us. We can’t wait to see what we do together.

I believe that this is just the beginning of something spectacular, not only for the brands involved in this specific collaboration, but for the entire web3 community and the metaverse in its entirety. 

Things tend to move at a very quick rate in the web3 space, so please be on the lookout for more information regarding this awesome collaboration and many more.

Culture Movies/TV

Recapping This Week’s “Succession”: ‘Too Much Birthday’

Donning an obnoxious bomber jacket with cheetahs on the front, Kendall kicks off this episode rehearsing “Honesty” by Billy Joel on stage in preparation for his upcoming birthday bash. And honestly, he doesn’t sound as bad as I had anticipated.

At Waystar, Shiv, Roman, and Tom are preparing for their meeting with GoJo, where they plan to acquire the company. Shiv and Roman have a mini argument about the deal while Tom silently sits alongside them and scrolls through prison facilities on his phone. The three of them walk to the meeting about GoJo and encounter the entire team toasting with champagne in the meeting room. Assuming that the deal has already been made, they walk in and are greeted with a different outcome: Gerri announces that after a call with the Department of Justice, they’ve decided not to pursue Waystar with prison charges and instead are going with a monetary settlement.
Macall B. Polay / HBO

Tom tries to play it cool with this news, but being unable to contain his excitement, he heads over to Greg’s office/dungeon and has an unhinged and excited freak-out. But just before he left the meeting, Logan walked past Tom, grabbed his arm, and said, “I’ll remember,” with regard to Tom having offered himself up to go down for the team.

In Greg’s office, Tom flips over Greg’s extremely heavy desk, runs around the room, throws things around, and ultimately kisses Greg on the forehead upon telling him the good news. Having gotten that off his chest, he heads back to the meeting, and apparently, there might be an issue with the GoJo deal.

Back at Kendall’s, he’s going over the guest list with his PR assistant, Comfrey, who tells him all the A-list celebrities who will be attending. He then asks her about any updates on whether or not his siblings are attending, but when she hesitates (because none of them have RSVPd), Kendall quickly brushes it off and acts like it doesn’t matter to him.

At Waystar, Logan starkly announces that the meeting between them and GoJo is off the table, given that its CEO decided to send other staff to attend the meeting, which Logan took as a slap in the face. Shiv, Roman, and Gerri try to convince him otherwise, as the attendees are sitting just outside the meeting room. Frank announces that he reached out to Nan about trying to acquire Pierce again, which shocks Shiv, as they already tried to do that once before. Logan sends everyone back to work, except for Gerri, Shiv, and Roman, who stay to persuade Logan.
Macall B. Polay / HBO

Shiv and Roman try to convince Logan to reconsider his decision with GoJo, but when his assistant, Kerry (with whom they believe their father is having an affair), agrees with Logan, Shiv doesn’t welcome her input. Instead, Shiv and Roman suggest that they attend Kendall’s birthday party, which Lukas Mattson (the head of GoJo) will be attending. Logan finally agrees to them going to Kendall’s, and on their way out of the meeting room, Logan hands Roman an envelope to give Kendall for his birthday.

At Kendall’s party, the siblings walk in and encounter a nurse in the lobby, who greets them and says, “Congratulations, you’ve just been born into the world of Kendall Roy.” They then find Connor waiting in the lobby with his arm in a sling under his jacket—apparently he had slipped and fallen prior to the party. Although he’s asked if he wants to remove his jacket, Connor refuses and continues into the party. This sounds extremely insignificant (which it is), but it’ll come back to the plot a little bit later.

The siblings finally greet Kendall, who’s in the VIP room, and Roman gives him Logan’s envelope (though he doesn’t open it just yet). Kendall then leads them through the party into a gallery exhibit within the event that is comprised of massive prints of newspaper covers that depict the Roys—except for Kendall—in a negative light. Connor takes it especially poorly, as he demands that Kendall remove the print of him. Just before heading back to the party, he tells his siblings that he’s happy that they came to his birthday.
Macall B. Polay / HBO

Off on his own, Kendall opens the envelope Logan and finds a birthday card with “Happy Birthday” crossed out on the inside that has been written in and replaced by, “Cash out and f*** off,” accompanied by a Share Purchase Approval document (meaning that Logan wants to buy him out of the company). It’s clear that Kendall is affected by this moment but tries to brush it off, as he always does. The sum of money ends up being $2 billion, but although Kendall is initially set against taking his father’s offer, his kind-of-girlfriend, Naomi Pierce, believes that he should reconsider.

Searching the party for Comfrey (of whom he has a crush on), Greg finally runs into her, but just as he’s about to ask her out, she tells him that she might have to brief the press negatively about him on Kendall’s behalf. After this run-in, she tells Kendall that she has been hearing that Shiv and Roman have been going around the party in a discreet search for a private meeting space with Mattson. Realizing why his siblings are actually there at his party, Kendall tells her to tell them that there’s space at a VIP area upstairs called the Treehouse.

At the Treehouse, Shiv and Roman are stuck outside because security won’t let them in, but are soon greeted by Kendall, who they assume will allow them inside. He then reveals that he knows about the plan to meet with Mattson and refuses to let him up because “losers” aren’t allowed up there.

After their unsuccessful try to get up to the Treehouse, Roman tells Shiv about what was in the envelope and says that “Dad and I handled it,” which greatly angers Shiv. Feeling frozen out, she storms off.

In the Treehouse, Kendall tells Mattson that he should be buying Waystar instead of the other way around as an attempt to ruin Shiv and Roman’s plans. After that quick chat, Kendall meets up with Rava, who asks him if he has opened up his kids’ present yet—which he hasn’t (it was wrapped with rabbit-themed wrapping paper). Rava also mentions to Kendall that “goons” from Waystar have been following the nanny and kids at the park, which he was totally unaware of.
Macall B. Polay / HBO

Greg runs into Kendall and tells him about how he wants to ask out Comfrey. Surprisingly, Kendall doesn’t take this news very well and ends up scolding Greg for crossing that line, along with personal attacks against his character. Despite that, Greg explains the situation to Comfrey, who—upon hearing what Kendall said—decides to agree to the date with Greg.

As a very mini side plot, Kendall sends Comfrey to force Connor to take off his jacket, no matter what. She walks up to Connor and—in a multitude of different ways—tries to get him to take off his jacket, but each time, Connor adamantly refuses. When things start to get heated between the two, Willa is the one to finally butt in, putting an end to the jacket situation by telling her to leave him alone.
Macall B. Polay / HBO

Roman is finally able to meet up with Mattson after he forces his way into the Treehouse. Portrayed by Alexander Skarsgård, Mattson is a fairly calm and casual guy, and the two strike up a good rapport almost immediately. Pretty quickly, Roman makes some great points about Waystar and how Mattson won’t have to deal with Logan if he decides to go along with the plan, which sways Mattson into agreeing to the deal. After a quick trip to the bathroom, where Roman suggests that Mattson should pee on his app, StarGo, Mattson agrees to a meeting to talk about making a final deal.

Kendall is about to make his big stage appearance when he suddenly decides not to go through with the plan (which required him getting into a harness and some sort of being nailed to the cross moment). At this moment, Kendall realizes that the party he created is exactly the vibe of the party that he didn’t want to have: one that “feels like an a**hole’s birthday party.”

Following that moment backstage, Kendall heads to the present room to search for his kids’ birthday present. Frantically looking everywhere, Kendall starts to get heated as he can’t seem to find it anywhere. In a poorly-chosen moment, Naomi chooses to give him his present, which is a new watch. Kendall is dumbfounded by the gift, clearly unhappy with it although trying to put on a good face. Unable to hold in his disdain for the present, he finally states that he was wondering why she would give him a gift like that.

Upon that remark, he starts ripping apart and throwing presents around the room while still searching for his kids’ gift. Finally sitting down among the presents alongside Naomi, Kendall breaks down and says that “this is so pathetic,” and, “I wish I was…,” but then trails off until taking a beat and finishing with, “home.” But in reality, it’s clear what word he was actually referring to in the pause.
Macall B. Polay / HBO

Chipper from Comfrey agreeing to go on a date with him, Greg is walking around a weird garden section of the party where people hiding in hedges give out compliments to the people walking by. The two walk through the garden, but things suddenly turn sour when Tom feels that Greg is being too happy since Tom is the only one who should be allowed to be happy because of the good news about not having to go to prison.

After a drunken stint on the dance floor, Shiv meets up with Roman, who explains that he won’t be telling her about his meeting with Mattson and that if Logan wants to “loop her in,” he’ll finally tell her. Upon hearing this, Shiv is immediately angry and hurt, as Roman once again went behind her back in making regarding company dealings. Shiv tells him that Logan is just using him as his messenger boy, meaning that Logan doesn’t really value him in a real way. Kendall comes by to tell them to leave, but that ends up causing another, larger argument between the three.

Kendall mentions that GoJo was originally his idea, while also adding that Waystar is spying on his kids, which Shiv was completely unaware of. Roman, on the other hand, was totally aware of the situation, which adds even further to how out of the loop Shiv feels; she also tells Roman that spying on the kids is “disgusting.”
Macall B. Polay / HBO

Kendall and Roman start arguing separately, and just as Kendall decides to walk away instead of engaging with him, Roman pushes him hard to the ground, where he lands on his face. Kendall gets up very slowly and walks away, but not before yelling at Connor to remove his jacket.

Back at Kendall’s, he stands out on his terrace, looking down at the city below him. Naomi appears behind him, and the two decide to sit down, with Kendall eventually resting his head on her lap, his eyes seemingly lifeless as he looks out into the sky.

Sports Strength

Remembering Virgil Abloh’s Biggest Moments In Sports

Early Sunday afternoon (Nov. 29th), the news of iconic fashion designer Virgil Abloh’s sudden passing became the topic of conversation and inspired tributes from all over the world. The 41-year-old Chicagoan rose to prominence as the founder of the streetwear company Off-White before becoming the head of Louis Vuitton’s menswear department in 2018. In doing so, Abloh made a name for himself by not only thriving in fashion but by successfully bringing his high sense of taste and creativity into other worlds via collaborations that created defining moments.

Down below are some of Abloh’s biggest moments in sports.

Serena Williams enlists Abloh to make a statement with her new outfit at the 2019 French Open

Although the pair had worked together before, the 2019 French Open was the most significant moment between Abloh and Williams. After sparking controversy because of her outfit at the previous year’s French Open (Williams donned a “Black-Panther”-inspired catsuit meant to surpass blood clots following the birth of her daughter), Williams reconnected with Abloh to make a bigger statement with her outfit this time around.

Stepping onto the court in a black and white Off-White two-piece outfit with “Mother, Champion, Queen, and Goddess” labeled across it, Williams silenced her critics by advancing out of the first round.

Abloh recreates Air Jordan 1’s to begin his relationship with Nike/Jordan Brand

Although Abloh boasts a long resume full of massive achievements, the start of his relationship with Nike confirmed he had arrived. In 2017, Nike asked the Off-White founder to collaborate with them on a project called “The Ten,” in which Abloh redesigned ten of the company’s most popular sneakers.

Abloh’s redesign of the original Air Jordan 1’s became a massive cultural moment across sports and fashion, and its impact is still felt today. Besides being an all-time commercial success, the Off-White Air Jordan 1’s have been worn by Drake, Naomi Campbell, and Roger Federer, amongst many celebrities.

Louis Vuitton partners with the NBA and celebrates at Madison Square Garden

Two years into his stint as Louis Vuitton’s artistic director for their menswear, Abloh had the chance to showcase his love for basketball when the fashion giant partnered up with the NBA in November of 2020. In addition to designing several NBA-inspired pieces, Louis Vuitton would also create the league’s championship-holding case.

Abloh and Louis Vuitton veiled their new partnership center court at Madison Square Garden to celebrate this joyous occasion.

Abloh and Nike releases World-Cup inspired collaboration

While Abloh initially made his inroads in the sporting world because of his passion for basketball and skateboarding, the proud Chicago, IL native also appreciated the sport of futbol. Leading up to the 2018 World Cup, Abloh’s Off-White label and Nike Football released their 1990’s inspired “Football, Mon Amour” collection.

“You know, I’ve been playing football since I was eight years old,” Abloh said in an interview three years ago. “It all comes from sport. I was one of those kids in high school that played every sport. I didn’t look at sport as individual games— everything was just a skill to learn and get better at. Football is probably the sport that I played the most all the way up through to college.”

Gaming NFT

Another Use Case for Play to Earn Gaming: Quiz Games Like Mimir

Video gaming is now a multi-billion dollar industry. Triple-A games have budgets the size of Hollywood blockbusters. Professional gamers can earn as much in a year as A-list celebrities. More than half of all US households now own a games console. An activity that was once the preserve of nerds and computer geeks has long been as mainstream as watching television and listening to music. 

So play-to-earn should have spread like wildfire. Not only does it promise players that they can continue to enjoy their games. It also promises to pay them for their fun. As players build their metaverses or pitch their NFTs into battle, they can load up on tokens that they can use to purchase more in-game products or convert into other cryptocurrencies, and even into fiat.

And yet play-to-earn hasn’t quite taken off yet. The practice is still limited to gaming corners of the blockchain world or the blockchain corners of the gaming world. It’s likely that that situation will change soon. Companies as large as both EA and Ubisoft have talked about the future of gaming on the blockchain and hinted that it will involve NFTs. As they churn out top-end games with play-to-earn features, we can expect those games to find an audience.

For now though, the blockchain world is still waiting for that breakthrough game that will pitch even casual gamers into the world of blockchain gaming. 

That breakthrough might just come in the form of one of the oldest and most traditional of games: quizzes. Mimir is a new game that describes itself as the world’s first quiz powered by blockchain technology. Players can take part in livestreamed tournaments broadcast from Sweden or they can challenge their friends and strangers in one-on-one competitions. Questions cover topics from sports to popular culture, and the game is completely free to play. 

Pitched as a traditional quiz game in an App Store, it’s easy to see Mimir generating downloads and winning an audience among even the most casual of gamers. But Mimir goes further. The game also lets players stake and earn Mimir tokens. Those tokens can be used for in-game purchases such as buying entry fees to big live shows, staking to compete for a prize pool, and even to take part in the game’s decentralized governance with voting rights.

For quiz game players, the token’s play-to-earn feature adds a whole new layer of excitement to competitions and tournaments. Not only can they enjoy the buzz that comes from guessing a question right or showing off their knowledge—or beating a friend with their expertise in European soccer history—they can also earn real money by doing so.

Quizzes make no demands of players. They’re not like first person shooters that demand a stomach for blood splatter and a quick trigger finger. Nor are they like metaverses that require construction skills and strategic planning. If you can answer a question—or try to—you can enjoy a quiz. When playing is that simple and comes with earning, we might well find that simple quiz games become the breakthrough play-to-earn platform.

Style What To Buy

Dennis Rodman and Culture Kings Team Up For A Groundbreaking Collaboration

If you know anything about Dennis Rodman, then you know he has always been known for his cutting edge fashion sense. This past weekend, the legendary former professional basketball player and international sensation teamed up with the iconic Culture Kings for a dope collaboration that highlights a new graphic apparel release as the brand continues their North American expansion.

The official Culture Kings x Dennis Rodman collaboration is a bold, colorful collection that extends Rodman’s legacy through fashion and culture, and dropped this past Friday to kick off the Black Friday/Cyber Monday holiday. Always pushing the envelope and moving the culture forward, Dennis Rodman is best known for being one of the most dynamic and unique celebrity figures of all time. Fearless and bold, this collection represents those same characteristics that made us fall in love with the five-time champ back in the 1990s.

From his rainbow-colored hair, to his tattoos and piercings, Rodman remains a fashion legend whose progressive looks embody the ethos of this Culture Kings collaboration from top to bottom. 

Culture Kings
Dennis Rodman x Culture Kings

Isaac Metekingi, Creative Director of Culture Kings, had this to say about the collection.

“Dennis Rodman’s unconventional ways and fearlessness have earned him a reputation as one of the most interesting people in the world, which aligns perfectly with the Culture Kings brand. With the design process, we really wanted to stay true to Rodman as a living icon and capture his out-of-this-world persona and key iconic career moments through easy, wearable pieces that fans can incorporate into their everyday style.”

Culture Kings
Dennis Rodman x Culture Kings

The Culture Kings x Dennis Rodman collaboration features a range of premium dark-washed, vintage hoodie and t-shirt styles complete with bold graphics and retro lettering. Custom artwork captures iconic moments of Rodman’s life and reinvents them with high-quality cotton, stylized cracked graphics, neon accents, and a vintage wash. Key pieces from the collection include styles like the ‘Garage Premium’ tee, ‘Pinhead Vintage’ tee, and ‘Rodman Tattoo’ long sleeve.

Prices range from  $39 – $79 USD, and you can view the collection in its entirety on the Culture Kings website.

Sports Strength

Lincoln Riley Named New Head Coach at USC

Lincoln Riley is leaving the University of Oklahoma to become the head coach at the University of Southern California. The announcement came Sunday, November 28, after he denied multiple reports of him going to LSU and reassured the fanbase of his allegiance to the Sooners’ moving forward. ” All of us are trying to make this place better, make this program better,” Riley said during a press conference on Saturday, “and so you don’t do that without working together and conversing with each other. So of course we’re gonna continue to do that. We work well together, and we’re going to keep working well together.” 

Riley spent five seasons as the Sooners’ head coach, finishing with a 55-10 regular season record, a 1-3 bowl record, including an 0-3 playoff record. Additionally, Riley had won four consecutive Big 12 titles. With their loss to Oklahoma State on Saturday, this season marks the first time in his tenure at Oklahoma where the Sooners will miss the Big 12 championship.

Apparently Riley is taking a few staffers with him to USC—defensive coordinator Alex Grinch and Wide Receivers coach Dennis Simmons to name a few. 

Riley has shown to be somewhat of a quarterback guru his whole tenure at Oklahoma. Fortunately, Riley will inherit USC quarterback Jaxson Dart, who flashed and showed the ability to be a really good quarterback. To add to that, the Trojans have plenty of young talent at the wide receiver position including sophomores Tahj Washington and Gary Bryant Jr

USC is currently ranked 67th in recruiting, but we can be rest assured they will come storming up that list as Riley is a masterful recruiter. Riley brought in multiple five-star quarterbacks while at Oklahoma, and he landed a huge transfer in Jalen Hurts. Additionally, he’s landed multiple big time receivers and a host of other special talent. 

The Trojans are in good hands moving forward. 

Unfortunately for the Sooners, former starting quarterback Spencer Rattler recently announced he was leaving Oklahoma and entered the transfer portal. Though he was no longer the starter, his absence will be felt moving forward. Additionally, they’ve already lost multiple big name top recruits, including class of 2022 linebacker Kobie McKinzie. To make matters worse, 2023 recruits got a whiff of the news and the news affected their signing. Class of 2023 Five star quarterback Malachi Nelson decommitted after hearing the news of Lincoln. Wide receiver Brandon Inniss is the 6th ranked prospect in Florida and the 29th recruit in the 2023 class, it’ll be a big blow to Oklahoma moving forward. After Nelson, running back Raleek Brown may have been the biggest player to hint at not attending Oklahoma. It hasn’t become official, but Brown stated Lincoln leaving would change a lot for him. Brown is the 60th ranked overall prospect. Furthermore, Brown is the second ranked California prospect and he was highly recruited by USC before ultimately choosing to sign with the Sooners.

To add more fuel to the fire, the Sooners are set to join the SEC sometime before 2025. 

Riley on the other hand, will have it much easier at USC. He’s joining the PAC12 where the competition is a bit thinner than it is in the Big12 and especially thinner than the SEC competition. No matter how you shape it, Oklahoma losing Riley is a huge loss for the program, and a big gain for USC.


Budweiser Launches First NFT Collection: The Budverse Cans Heritage Edition

As the proliferation of the metaverse approaches, NFTs and other web3 technologies are becoming an increasingly important part of building out brands’ identities for the future. The King of Beers, Budweiser, is hopping aboard the train with a collection of 1,936 NFTs—representing the year 1936, the first appearance of a Budweiser can. There is arguably no can more iconic than Budweiser’s signature red iteration, and the Anheuser Busch brand has launched a vast array of special edition cans in its lengthy tenure as the King of Beers.

The Gold NFTs

As is the case with any good NFT project, Budweiser is including 36 ultra-rare tokens in the form of gold cans, featuring imagery from the brand’s iconic classic cans. This can gives holders the same benefits as the rest of the collection, with some added bonuses only available to gold holders.

The Budweiser can is an incredible selection for an NFT project like this, as it builds on a similar structure to other immensely successful projects. Each can has a different history; fans will have to decide which cans they like the most and assign their value on the secondary market based on these preferences. While other brands scramble to figure out ways to make their IP fit an NFT model, Budweiser’s can production for the past 85 years has been arguably leading up to a project like this. The cans were NFTs before NFTs existed.

The Core NFTs

The gold cans are priced at $999 (plus gas fees), and the other options will be priced at $499.

If you have questions about NFTs or the minting process, Budweiser included a very helpful FAQ on their landing page, answering any questions you may have about the process.

Participants must be 21 and over to purchase a can. Plans for the metaverse aren’t widely available yet, but each token—regardless of rarity—will carry some utility in the brand’s forthcoming Budverse.

The cans went live on November 29th at 1pm EST and are now available to browse OpenSea.

Sports Strength

Elton’s Weekly Wrestling High Spots and Botches: November 22-November 28


High Spots: Riddle’s attempts at making me crack a smile always fall flat, but the man always knows how to regain my interest every time he enters the ring. He and Dolph Ziggler put on a stirring match that saw Riddle pull off a slick powerslam and devastating RKO just like his tag team championship partner. After the match, Randy Orton made sure to repay the favor by planting Robert Roode with his own version of the Bro Derek. I love the camaraderie between those two unlikely partners – I just hope it doesn’t come to an end on that old tired “partner turns on the other out of nowhere!” storyline WWE loves reverting back to. Now it seems like Seth Rollins and Finn Bálor got issues, which is perfectly fine by me. Those two getting into a new feud will result in nothing but fire matches, so I hope they go at it for a bit before Seth’s WWE Championship title shot comes around. Their brief brawl here was a nice tease of what’s to come between the two in the coming weeks. Seth definitely got the W during he and Finn’s first ringside encounter!

Damien Priest and his anger issues are kinda heat, I’m not gonna lie! The man has developed quite the short fuse lately and has been wildin’ out on a weekly basis. Apollo Crews is seemingly next in line to get a shot at the current United States Champion, as evidenced by his promo against Damien here. Now that’s a match I’m dying to see! Although we didn’t get to see it on this edition of Raw, Damien still got to put in some work by beating the holy hell out of Sami Zayn. I’ve long since stopped caring about the Brand Split (and so has WWE apparently!), so Sami’s appearance here didn’t bother me one bit. SmackDown’s resident conspiracy theory pusher had a decent match with Damien, Damien won, and now I’m ready to see the US Champ tap into his rage to do Apollo extra dirty.

Because of Austin Theory’s perceived ballsiness from Mr. McMahon, Austin found himself in the main event of Raw against Big E for the sport’s richest prize! This first-time matchup provided a fresh encounter that had some fun moments sprinkled throughout it. Could I have done without the distractions from Kevin Owens and Rollins? For sure! I just felt like Big E and Austin’s match would have been much better served without any of those outside influences. The match still ended up being a solid affair, though. The post-match action that took place between Big E, Owens, and Rollins is clearly pointing to all three men battling for the WWE Championship at some point. If Rollins feuds with Finn for a while and Owens steers clear of Big E for a bit longer, then I can see WWE holding off on that big-time Triple Threat Match until the middle or end of December. Maybe it could be the main event of next year’s Day 1 PPV, perhaps? We shall see…

Botches: Fam…fans are still out here hoppin’ the guardrail and tryna attack these wrestlers? That was embarrassing as hell for my city and it was especially scary ‘cause that random attack could have resulted in something far worse happening. I’m just glad Seth is okay. From what I’ve seen and read though, that dumbass fan came out on the worse end of his unexpected run-in. That was hard to watch, fam. Now let’s get into the shitty scripted stuff this episode of Raw forced me to endure. So Riddle went for a funny, hah-ha moment by dressing up like his homie Orton. I sat stone-faced through their entire cringy backstage segment – WWE comedy these days is comparable to modern-day Saturday Night Light. It’s just bad all around.

That egg…that damn egg! Vince McMahon really came back to TV to put a movie prop in the spotlight, make tone-deaf remarks about releasing people, and use that horrid gimmick item to hand out a WWE Championship opportunity to Austin. To make matters even more idiotic, it turns out Austin stole the egg in the first place to take a selfie with it! And instead of punishing the selfie taker, Vince awards him with a match against Big E ‘cause he was impressed with Austin’s boldness. WWE really took up PPV time at Survivor Series and on this showing of Raw to push a stolen egg storyline. Watching all those wrestlers frantically search for the egg backstage just put me in such a sour mood. So Becky Lynch rambled on and on as usual – she shitted on the fans for hating on the Women’s Survivor Series match from the night before (which was boring as all hell and deserved the tepid reaction it got). “The Man” is such a non-factor to me these days, so her promo went in one ear and out the other. Becky vs. Liv Morgan just doesn’t excite me, to be honest. Bianca Belair fought Tamina again for some reason. And just like their previous match, it served no purpose as it was no good and too short to amount to anything. Move Bianca onto something worth her time and energy, please!

I’m more than ready to see AJ Styles move back into singles competition now, especially after seeing him engage in a silly ass match alongside Omos against The Street Profits. To see it build to some big mystery bag reveal and only end up in a fire extinguisher coming out of it was just so deflating & unnecessary. It was a lame match with an even lamer ending. Hey, we got new Women’s Tag Team Champions y’all! *crickets* That was me and plenty of other fans’ reactions to that title change since 1. Those belts are worth their weight in copper and 2. The champs & challengers have been treated as nothing more than complete afterthoughts in an uneventful division. Rhea Ripley’s fall from grace has been legendary on the main roster. It’s kind of impressive how uncool and unimportant she’s become when compared to her incredible run on NXT. The 24/7 Championship made its unwelcome return with a nothing match between Cedric Alexander and Reggie. Cedric ended up winning the match and the garbage title, but then the circus came into town long enough to distract him and cause Dana Brooke to lay him down for the 1-2-3. Now Dana has the belt…and still, nobody cares.

The way they’re stretching out this whole Mysterio father and son drama is beyond annoying at this point. A Dominik Mysterio heel turn on his pops seems like it should have happened already, but suddenly they’ve mended fences in an effort to get back at Bobby Lashley. I’d much rather see Bobby get back into the WWE Championship picture instead of feuding with two guys who are nothing more than annoying pests to him. After watching Bobby tap out Dominik without breaking a sweat, I’m now hoping “The Almighty” puts all this BS behind him so he can tend to some more important duties. I truly never thought I’d be so annoyed by something that Rey Mysterio is involved in but here we are.

NXT 2.0

High Spots: Ay you know what? I kind of admired Grayson Waller at first. But his super cornball demeanor, cringe promo delivery, and horrible taste in-ring attire as of late have sent me flying off the bandwagon for the guy. But at least I got to see Tomasso Ciampa send him to “Never Never Land” after a highly competitive matchup with the young man. Grayson’s tolerable in the ring, at least – he looked decent in there against the NXT Champion. I’ll certainly give him his credit there. LA Knight still has unfinished business with the guy, though – Grayson jumped Mr. Knight from behind before the man could even have a match with the social media buzzword regurgitator, Joe Gacy. Afterward, The Diamond Mine’s Malcolm Bivens helped set up an NXT Cruiserweight Championship match at WarGames between Roderick Strong and Joe with the greatest line of the night – “Roderick Strong is gonna beat you like a Lil’ Jon track…YEAHHHHHHHHHHH!”

Speaking of The Diamond Mine, their lady representative Ivy Nile cleaned Yulisa Leon’s clock in a fun squash match. Ivy’s exercise reps in between a submission hold are a part of her gimmick that I can definitely get behind! I got a lotta love for her version of the Dragon Sleeper (big shout out to the move’s originator, Ultimo Dragon!). Ivy’s one of the few NXT 2.0 new blood talents that I actually care for. Can’t wait to see where she’s at in a year’s time. Solo Sikoa got to speak menacingly once again as he talked about fighting anyone and everyone. Simple, precise, and concise…nice worth there. CAMERON GRIMES HOLDS IT DOWN! TALK YO SHIT, MONEY MAN! I’ve been following the man since his PWG days and have been a fan of his ever since. It sure was nice watching him get serious for a moment (shout out to Lance Storm) and stop giving dating app advice on this show – Cameron definitely gave his best NXT promo to date. I can’t wait to see him stomp a cavern-sized hold in Duke Hudson’s chest at WarGames. A bald ass Duke sounds good to me!

I didn’t realize how much I missed Santos Escobar until I saw him make his return to active duty on this episode. Malik Blade played the part of his return vict…excuse me, opponent. Malik got a pretty dropkick, I’ll give him that. But that lil’ move of his just wasn’t enough to do any significant damage to the proud leader of Legado del Fantasma. Santos is back to wreak havoc once again and I’m glad he got to turn the tide back in his favor by destroying Malik. Judging by the post-match proceedings, it sounds like Kyle O’Reilly & Von Wagner will square off against Joaquin Wilde and Raul Mendoza for the right to face Imperium at WarGames. I’m placing all my bets on Kyle and Von coming out as the victors of that one. NXT’s crowded tag-team scene kept on rolling along with a decent little encounter between Josh Briggs & Brooks Jensen and the Grizzled Young Veterans. I like both teams and don’t really enjoy watching either of them take a loss, but I was fine seeing them big ol’ country boys pick up the W since they needed it the most.

Well, what do you know? The Triple Threat Match for the NXT North American Championship was the biggest highlight of the night! The quality trio of Carmelo Hayes, Johnny Gargano, and Pete Dunne was a joy to sit and watch do battle – their match was a warm reminder of the match quality that NXT 1.0 was is still remembered fondly for. The action was fast & furious here thanks to some dope three-man exchanges and plenty of moments that had Johnny pulling off some of his finest signature high spots. Tony D’Angelo’s run-in helped Carmello retain the title, but everything fell into pure chaos during the big multi-man brawl that ended the show. #DIY reunited in the middle of it, which was a tearjerker of a reunion. Now the Men’s WarGames match is set and it’s going to be a war between the Old & New School’s of NXT. NOW THAT’S WHAT I’M HERE FOR!

Botches: Hey, a new NXT lady is about to make her presence felt! And her gimmick is…Beverly Hills rich girl that uses daddy’s money to get what she wants? How original! So yeah, I already don’t give a shit about this incoming Tiffany Stratton individual. The match that took place between Kayden Carter & Kacy Catanzaro and Indi Hartwell & Persia Pirotta was a humdrum affair – it didn’t last long, the action itself was uninspired, and Indi’s constant ring finger observations annoyed me to death. Big meh energy was felt there. Don’t be surprised when Boa’s name ends up on the next list of “budget cut” releases – without his supernatural adviser by his side, he and his facepalm-worthy “spirit” gimmick is gonna go nowhere fast. That promo of his was highly unconvincing of whatever message he was trying to get across.

Mandy Rose and Cora Jade wrestled, which did absolutely nothing for me. Kay Lee Ray’s silly-ass distraction finish just made me roll my eyes as it led to Cora using her favorite move (THE SHOCK ROLL-UP PIN!) to get the unexpected win. I could care less about this year’s Women’s WarGames match, so all of the segments that were put in place to hype it up on this episode were meaningless to me. MSK…man, y’all already know what type of bullshit they got into again. We don’t have to get into it.

AEW Dynamite

High Spots: Now AEW is most known for kicking off all of its shows with a hard-fought match. But in a very rare move, the latest episode of Dynamite kicked things off with a 20-minute promo battle. And unlike those horrible 20-minute promo segments that bored everyone to tears during The Authority era, the verbal heat exchanged between CM Punk and MJF was pure gold. There were some zingers littered all through that mic battle that it’s so hard to recall each one. The ones that stood out to me were MJF christening his newest rival “PG Punk” and likening his current run to that of John Cena’s. Plus I screamed my head off like a hype man at a URL rap battle when Punk said “You’re too busy talking about the four pillars, you don’t even realize you’ve been replaced by Britt Baker.” That line about MJF being a less popular version of The Miz was a soul taker, too. That was one of the best opening segments in Dynamite history. And to top it all off, not a single punch was thrown. God-tier stuff right there.

Afterward, Punk put on a decent match with QT Marshall. I kinda felt like they gave QT a bit too much offense here, but it makes sense when you consider the whole “Punk is still trying to get back into fighting shape” storyline AEW has been telling all along. I still felt like Punk should have gotten a better opponent, though. The backstage area was hella busy on this pre-Thanksgiving episode – Dante Martin decided to join the ranks of Team Taz (much to Lio Rush’s dismay…), Eddie Kingston almost murdered 2Point0 & Daniel Garcia after he was plastered with a cup of coffee, Adam Cole & Bobby Fish got into it with Best Friends, Dr. Britt Baker learned about her upcoming Rampage match with Riho, and we learned that another tag team title shot is coming Jurassic Express’ way. The Gunn Club vs. Bear Country match was short, which is exactly how I wanted it to be since I’m not all that into Billy Gunn & his boys. Sitting through that entire segment was worth it though ‘cause I got to see Darby Allin run down the ramp like a bat out of hell & clobber Austin Gunn with a vicious tackle that’s going to be replayed for years to come.

In the next match within the TBS Women’s Tournament Championship match, we got to see Thunder Rosa vs. Jamie Hayter. Those two ladies beat the holy hell out of each other with some stiff strikes that had me thinking they had real-life murder beef. There were definitely some sloppy moments here and there (plus the ref distraction was a bit too long for my tastes), but I enjoyed most of the brutal action both women put on display overall. Britt’s errant superkick cost Jamie the match, which makes me think some sort of dissension may come into play within the AEW Women’s World Champion’s camp. Bryan “I HAVE ‘TILL 5!” Danielson continued his war against the AEW World Champion and his buddies in The Dark Order. This time, Bryan locked up with Colt Cabana in a short yet effective matchup. Colt got to shine a few times in front of his hometown crowd, but the “American Dragon” ultimately got the upper hand and even knocked a tooth out of Colt’s mouth. After his victory, Bryan stood face to face with Adam Page. The shit-talking between both men was extra heated once again, plus the brief brawl between them was a nice tease of their upcoming title match. Great stuff here!

The eight-man tag match that brought this extremely pleasing edition of Rampage to an end was certainly eventful. Cody Rhodes and The Death Triangle engaged in an awesome matchup with FTR, Andrade El Idolo, and Malakai Black. Rey Fenix bumped around the ring like a madman with his high-flying offense, which got me to pop outta my seat on several occasions. Everyone else did their part in adding to the match with their exciting offense – even “Armed” Anderson and Tully Blanchard got in on some of the fun by knocking out Andrade’s handler! The big story of the match was Cody’s misplaced superkick to Pac, which cost their team the win. The big moves that came before that moment were super hype and built up perfectly to that mistimed maneuver. The Chicago crowd was hot for this match and were especially passionate about their hate for Cody. After Cody threw his weight belt into the crowd, they threw it right back and almost clipped my queen Aubrey Edwards! This hate for Cody is next level and I’m guessing Pac is gonna get cheered like a hero once he targets Cody for revenge after what happened here.

Botches: So Chris Jericho roasted Matt Lee about his square-shaped head, which left me stone-faced ‘cause that horrible attempt at a joke reminded me of how old Jericho is getting. That segment of his gave me nothing but “corny dad at Thanksgiving trying to get his drunk humor over at the dinner table” vibes. A rare comedy miss from “Le Champion” here…

Impact Wrestling


Botches: I despise Wrestle House – none of the material is funny, the matches are inconsequential, and the whole concept is the perfect embodiment of cringe. This year’s edition was just more of the same and gave me way more Johnny Swinger and Hernandez than I was asking for. This atrocious gimmick episode made me yearn for the days of the Turkey Suit Challenge, which lets you know just how desperate I was for some sort of half-decent wrestling on Thanksgiving. Without Jeremy Borash holding it down on the production side of things anymore, Impact Wrestling’s more comedic segments are incredibly weak and a waste of everyone’s time.

WWE SmackDown

High Spots: On this post-Thanksgiving episode of Smackdown, everyone’s favorite “Tribal Chief” hit the ring to remind us all to be thankful for his glorious presence on Friday nights. He let it be known that Brock Lesnar is a scrub, he’s practically lapped the entire roster already, and the whole world will finally acknowledge him once his career comes to an end. Solid promo here from SmackDown’s resident world-beater and dominating Universal Champion. It’s going to be pretty wild once Brock Lesnar pops back up to make Roman eat those words, as evidenced by his suspension finally getting lifted. Paul Heyman’s paranoia is always great to see since it always results in Kayla Braxton getting roasted by one of his heated promos.

Drew McIntyre & Jeff Hardy vs. Happy Corbin & Madcap Moss was a perfectly serviceable matchup – I only cared about it because North Carolina’s favorite son Jeff Hardy got to shine in front of his hometown followers and actually get the win. WWE loves shitting on their talents in their hometown, but they chose to switch it up for once and allow Jeff to walk away with the big victory. Jeff will get cheered even when he hits his 60s and does his famous dance with a walker close by. The man is wrestling royalty and shall forever be treated as such. I got my wish on this episode – Ridge Holland and Cesaro went extra hard against each other in their first-ever matchup. There was an awkward pin done on behalf of Ridge at one point, plus the way Cesaro got the win over Ridge fell flat to me. But overall, I enjoyed the short piece of work they provided here.

Now were all the ringside servings for the Thanksgiving Leftovers Throwdown a bit much? Yeah, but I’m so used to these silly holiday-themed matches WWE does on an annual basis. It didn’t bother me much since Rick Boogs and Angel had themselves a pretty decent affair. Sitting through it was all worth it just to see Shinsuke Nakamura sweep Humberto and cause him to fall right through the table he was shredding Boogs’ guitar on. Angel ended up getting the win amidst all the chaos, which was fine by me. The buildup to Xia Li’s eventual SmackDown debut continued here with another comic book stylized vignette that provided some more personal backstory. Simply put, she hates individuals that she deems “vultures” and will always take the opportunity to put them out of their misery. I can’t wait to see Xia finally make her presence felt on Friday nights once she starts roundhouse kicking everybody’s heads off. Sasha Banks & Naomi vs. Shayna Baszler & Natalya was perfectly acceptable for what it was – I’m completely over this whole Naomi vs. Sonya Deville garbage, though.

Botches: Fam, they really couldn’t find a better way to add some more heat to Charlotte Flair and Toni Storm’s future clash? The bookers behind their segment really went for slapstick humor with two pie face splashes to Toni, which was highly disappointing to watch. How is anyone supposed to invest in Toni when we just saw her get treated like one of the Three Stooges and back down while Charlotte simply walked away without getting her comeuppance? That was such an atrocious way to build a match I’m actually looking forward to. Toni’s main roster run thus far has seen way more downs than ups thus far…

So the show-closing Black Friday Invitational Battle Royal was completely uninspired and kind of a bore – it did nothing to set itself apart from every other battle royal I’ve seen in recent memory, plus it left us with the wrong winner. But we all know Sami Zayn’s gonna end up losing his title opportunity to Jeff at some point ‘cause WWE knows no one gives a shit about Sami vs. Roman. AND I LIKE SAMI! But let’s keep it a buck, y’all – that’s not a match anyone wants to see while Jeff is sitting right there waiting to finally step into the ring with Universal Champion.

AEW Rampage

High Spots: My man Orange Cassidy was in extra lazy mode here! And I loved each and every moment of his lackadaisical nature during the fun tag team opener on this episode of Rampage. He & Wheeler Yuta (still don’t understand what that name is supposed to even mean…) butted heads, elbows, and knees with Adam Cole & Bobby Fish. Orange’s hilarious antics played really well into Adam’s crowd popping shtick at the beginning of this bout, which made me chuckle a few times. Then as the match got a bit more serious, both teams worked fast and hit hard with some nice tandem work and cool kickouts. Bobby actually finished someone with that top rope Falcon Arrow of his for once, which was a nice surprise. Good stuff here, for sure. Can’t wait for the day when Kyle O’Reilly dips from NXT 2.0 and leaves Von Wagner behind to reunite with his “Undisputed” family once again. Tony Nese threw down the gauntlet for a TNT Championship challenge to Sammy Guevarra on Rampage, which is the sort of match that I know will impress. Another exciting match got set up right after – the next episode of Rampage is going to give us The Lucha Brothers vs. FTR in a Two Out of Three Falls Match!

RIHO’S BACK! Been a minute since I’ve seen her in action. She got herself a future Women’s World Championship Match against Britt Baker after scoring a shocking upset. The match itself moved a bit slow in parts, but the action proceeded well enough and led to some big spots here and there. Hopefully, the next meeting between those two ladies is a bit better than this one. Since Andrade El Idolo spiked Cody Rhodes’ head into the concrete (which the crowd adored, by the way!), those two are gonna go to war in an Atlanta Street Fight on the next airing of Dynamite. I’m happy to see Andrade get a better footing on his AEW career now, so I’m very much looking forward to how he performs in singles action against arguably the most hated man in the company. 

And in the main event, Eddie Kingston and Daniel Garcia practically had a back alley brawl filled with nasty slaps, slick submission work, and some crowd popping suplexes. That’s what I love about Eddie and Daniel – their offense looks as real as possible because, in a way, it is! This was a nice slow burner of a match that grew in intensity the longer it went. After Eddie scored the win, 2Point0 jumped on him to regain the honor of their young boy. All of a sudden, Chris Jericho left the commentary booth to give Eddie some much-needed aid. So I’m guessing Eddie and Chris are gonna square up with 2Point0 at some point, which is a match I never imagined I’d see in my wildest dreams.

Botches: None to speak of, honestly…

Random Rumblings Around the Squared Circle

High Spots: Game Changer Wrestling really just made history! The up-and-coming deathmatch wrestling fed has officially sold out its Hammerstein Ballroom debut and will feature the largest crowd to have ever witnessed wrestling inside that building’s hallowed halls. As someone that’s been there countless times for ROH and TNA shows, this latest bit of news is mind-blowing to me. On Sunday, January 23, 2022, I’m gonna go out of my way to watch this whole deal on Fite TV since I effed up by not buying a ticket ahead of time. I have to give GCW another shout-out for its inaugural Indie Wrestling Hall of Fame event, which is taking place the night before its ballroom extravaganza. The indie legends getting inducted thus far include Jerry Lynn, Homicide, Ruckus, and Dave Prazak. Here’s hoping The Briscoes, Amazing Red, Super Dragon, and Christoper Daniels make it in next!

Botches: None to speak of, honestly…

Sports Strength

NBA Highlights From November 22nd-28th

Even amidst unusual change, there’s a tendency for things to return to normal; the chaos of the day-to-day of the NBA season eventually smooths away with time. The Milwaukee Bucks and Phoenix Suns, last year’s NBA Finals matchup, appear to be on an early track for a Finals rematch. Joel Embiid made his return to action and picked up where he left off. And lastly, we witnessed another example of how arrogant fans can be. Down below are my four takeaways from the NBA’s latest week in action!

The Suns’ winning streak is now at 16!

While pundits and fans may harp on aesthetics and style points, true contenders are content to win by any means necessary. The Phoenix Suns are a proud member of the latter group, given the wide variety of recent victories that comprised ongoing 16-game winning streak.

Whether it’s blowing out teams (Knicks) or winning in the last minutes (Spurs and Nets), the Suns aren’t apologizing for how they win and are more focused on what’s ahead of them: a huge primetime matchup against the 18-2 Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night.

Anthony Edwards is on track to become a superstar

Although most fans would expect a No. 1 overall pick to have the potential to become a superstar, it doesn’t make it less exciting when their potential is producing at a high level. The 2020 No. 1 overall pick, Anthony Edwards, is becoming a nightly highlight reel for the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Alongside averaging 22 points, six rebounds, and nearly four assists per game in his second NBA season, Edwards offers energy and gamesmanship, which have helped drive the Timberwolves’ improvement this season. And besides his magnificent dunks, Edwards provides valuable intangibles—such as his leadership and clutchness—that were overlooked before he arrived in the league.

Joel Embiid’s absence didn’t bother him during his return

Before missing nine games because he tested positive for COVID-19, Joel Embiid was beginning to find his rhythm as he lead the Philadelphia 76ers to a 7-2 record to start this season. And while a three-week absence would harm most players, last season’s MVP runner-up didn’t miss a beat in his return to action last Saturday night.

Despite the 76ers’ double-overtime loss to the Timberwolves, Embiid posted 42 points and 14 rebounds, reminding the league just how dominant he can be. Even at Embiid’s level of stardom, few players possess his combination of impact and production that can vault their team into contention.

Once again, fans cross the line for no other reason than being selfish

Even though most interactions between players and fans aren’t harmful, there are times where a line gets crossed. Last Wednesday, during the Los Angeles Lakers and Indiana Pacers game, LeBron James asked for two fans to be removed from their courtside seats due to offensive comments they made towards him.

And while there hasn’t been confirmation of what the fans said to James, the fact they got removed (and almost received a lifetime ban from attending NBA games) proves the need to improve fan behavior further. Regardless of who you are and the location of your seats, fans must remember they have to abide by the high standard that’s in place for spectators at these events. It’s an embarrassment to everyone involved when situations like this happen.

Culture Music

How Lulú Gained Over 100k Followers on TikTok

On this episode of Monday To Monday, Mike Boyd Jr is joined by Lulú, one of his favorite emerging artists hailing from Monterrey, Mexico. They talk about her success on TikTok, how she got signed, and her love for fashion. They even talk about her creative process and, more specifically, her mindset when creating a song. So tune in to hear this insightful episode!

Boyd and Lulú kick off the conversation with Boyd, asking her about her release, “911,” which Boyd noted that he enjoys. She explains that this song is a culmination of what she has been developing for a long time. She further states that her listeners pointed out this change of sound as well. 

Following that conversation, Boyd and Lulú talk about how she approaches the creation of her music. She says that she wants people never to feel alone when listening to her music. She talks about how she felt alone as a kid, but the music was always there for her. This same feeling inspired Lulú to inspire her to create and develop the style of music we hear today. Tune in below! 

Further talking about what this song means to her and her lyrics, Boyd shifts the conversation to her fashion. Something that you may not know about Lulú is that she went to fashion school, and she explains that with Boyd. She notes that she loves fashion and goes to school for it, but didn’t finish school to take a break from school and focus on music. She further says that she gave everything to music, and her family supported her along the way. 

Talking about her roots next, Boyd then asks how she got signed to Slowly. Lulú said that she met Adrian Benavides, her producer, and manager, at a Halloween party. She then introduced herself, with Adrian asking her to show him some of her music. They then hopped on a call later on to discuss her career and goals. She then met him at a studio to record “Mente En Blanco” and signed with Slowly at the beginning of 2021. 

Boyd then asks about Lulú’s TikTok and how she has gained over one hundred thousand followers on the platform. Lulú says that she combined her love for fashion, makeup, and music and combined those elements, and the fans love it. She is best known for her covers on the platform with electric makeup and fashion choices that make her stand out. Watch one below! 

This is an excellent conversation with a multi-faceted artist who is poised to see a lot of growth. If you are unfamiliar with the budding artist, be sure to check out the podcast and give a listen to her music! Additionally, check out her TikToks to see how you can leverage your passions into the creative space!