With the Schmoedown Collision fast approaching, let’s take a look at the event’s biggest moments so far. These aren’t necessarily my favourite moments, but they are the moments with the biggest impact, mostly as part of the storyline!
“I Betray You” – The End of the Four Horsemen
Not only was the Reilly/Murrell/Rocha triple threat a great match, but it was also one with huge storyline implications. While Rocha ran Murrell close, he fell to his second consecutive defeat, having lost a title match to the Patriots in his previous match. This prompted William Bibbiani to leave the faction, joining up with Ricky Hayberg and Witney Seibold. In the wake of this decision, Robert Meyer Burnett also left the Four Horsemen, starting what would be an unsuccessful spell in the Lion’s Den.
This moment was the first time an important Schmoedown faction had come to an end, and for a while Rocha and Knost found themselves without a faction, but it was only a matter of time before the pair unveiling the first iteration of the more successful Five Horsemen. The move also proved a success for Bibbiani, who has since won the singles belt, challenged for the team title, and won two consecutive Free For All MVP awards. It is only Burnett who is yet to carve out a successful post-Horsemen career for himself, although now that he is managing the Family, that may soon change.
“Alright, Hold That” – Murrell vs Levine
Having come out the other side of the Reilly/Murrell/Rocha triple threat with the singles belt, Murrell was faced with an immediate defence as Samm Levine cashed in his Free For All title shot. While Murrell is in his post-game interview, Levine appears to take in his shot, hoping to catch Murrell in a moment of exhaustion. If Murrell was tired, it didn’t show, and he put in a dominant display to hold on to his belt, and his victory and immediate defence went a long way to cement his GOAT moniker. The moment is best encapsulated when Murrell hands Grace Hancock his mic, answering Levine’s challenge with a defiant: “Hold that.”
“My League!” – Murrell vs. Ghai
It’s hard to think of many Schmoedown moments bigger than the game’s biggest upset. Having spent the season claiming that he’d killed Dan Murrell, Andrew Ghai was faced with the prospect of playing Dan Murrell in his un-retirement match. To fans and players alike, this was a match set up as the perfect match for Murrell to return in: he’d get an easy win, and Ghai would provide some theatricality. What could be simpler?
But the Schmoedown isn’t so straightforward, and Ghai is no pushover. The combination of a lights out performance from Ghai and a below par performance from Murrell saw Ghai TKO the man fans call the GOAT. Easily the best match of last season, and one of the best of all time, Ghai’s antics, and the jaw-on-the-floor shock of the whole thing, made for a match that left me grinning ear to ear.
“YES!!” – Above the Line vs Patriots
While the first thing that comes to mind when I think about the Above the Line vs. Patriots Iron Man match is McWeeny’s victorious explosion, this was a win that had far wider implications for the Schmoedown. Having defended the singles belt twice, become the first double-belted champ, Levine’s first defence of the team belt (and second defeat of the Patriots) was enough to convince Samm Levine that he had achieved everything that he could, and that it was time to hang up his… whiteboard pen (???) and retire.
Levine’s retirement meant that both the singles and team belts were left vacant until they were won by Bibbiani and the Shirewolves, respectively. At the same time, McWeeny found himself without a partner, which would eventually see him team up with Andrew Ghai as part of Robert Meyer Burnett’s faction, the Family. Above the Line’s defeat of the Patriots proved the flashpoint for a whole swathe of Schmoedown change.
“It’s Audioshop” – The End of the Lion’s Den
Above the Line’s defeat of the Patriots in fact turned out to be the end of both teams, in a moment that is the root of so many of the biggest Schmoedown stories at the upcoming Collision. Having received a tipoff from Mike Kalinowski, Ken Napzok confronted the Den’s manager, Tom Dagnino, about his alleged shady dealings, and left the faction to form the Knight’s of Ken, which would go on to morph into the faction that we now know as KOrruption. Furious with his manager, Sneider followed Napzok out the door, and went on to join up with Andreyko and form the current team champions, the Odd Couple.
The end of one of the Schmoedown’s biggest staples saw Dagnino go on to manage Who’s the Boss, and eventually become a part of the new-look Five Horsemen, and while JTE has spent much of the previous year out with injury, he looks to be making a real run at the singles belt at the moment. The end of the Lion’s Den caused significant shockwaves throughout the Schmoedown, and so it is of course appropriate that the moment was characterised by Dagnino’s unintelligible mumbling and nonsense: “It’s everything-shop!”
The Schmoedown Collision is often the moment to drop Schmoedown reveals, start new storylines, and conclude others. Let me know what moments you’re predicting ahead of this year’s event!