Hello Schmoedown fans, Tim here previewing the live Singles Championship match in Manhattan!
After defeating Dan Murrell, the youngest Singles Champion from the fan leagues prepares for his first title defense, against a scrapper who is ready to make the most of his hard-earned opportunity for the title. In front of a large audience and scores more watching around the world, this is a championship match that’s truly unique for many different people, including the competitors. Only one of them will move on and defend the title at the main event in this year’s Schmoedown Spectacular. For the other, his 2019 singles campaign ends here.
It’s “Primetime” Paul Oyama versus “The Insneider” Jeff Sneider for the Movie Trivia Schmoedown Championship Live!
While he knows what it feels like to be a champion in the Schmoedown, in the Singles Division Jeff Sneider has had to fight and scrap for a long time to finally earn his first-ever shot for the Singles title. In fact, it has taken three attempts to earn his first title shot in over three years. Here’s a recap to those previous tries.
The first one was back in 2017 at the inaugural Collider Collision. Sneider was then part of arguably the greatest Team Champions in history, The Patriots. In that #1 Contender Match, he was facing Kristian Harloff (who back then was still an active competitor). Sneider was seeking to be the first Double-Belted Champion. Harloff, on the other hand, was on a momentum that he didn’t even ask for because he wanted to grow the league instead of play. Still, he did not want to waste his opportunity against Sneider. That matchup was one of the best of the year. Both traded blows, used challenges successfully, and went the distance into the final question of the final round. Sneider needed Harloff to miss it, but Harloff got “Jerry Goldsmith,” placing him in the title match against the champ. It was a close one for Sneider, but he looked forward to scrapping for another one despite an answer he thought was “not” a woodwind instrument.
The second one was last year, before the second Collider Collision. It was Jeff Sneider facing William Bibbiani who was using his #1 Contender shot, which he won for being the MVP of Free 4 All II, to make a run for the Singles Championship. Round One was what many believed to be the theme of the match: a battle of two scrappers. Round Two on the other hand, went completely different. While Bibbiani did fairly okay with his category, Sneider stepped up to the plate with the intention of blasting Bibbiani away. He unfortunately spun “70s Movies,” a category that was a weakness for Sneider. Even though he wanted the title shot badly, he was not motivated at all to continue and seemingly surrendered to Bibbiani, who won by KO. It was a move that was criticized by almost everyone in the Schmoedown community at the time.
His third attempt came this season. After a solid showing in the Teams Division with Marc Andreyko, as The Odd Couple, Jeff tried his luck again in Singles when he faced Mark Reilly. He gave it his all and took the victory in his final question to be in the next #1 Contender Match. In that matchup, Sneider faced a red-hot Mike Kalinowski who had literally just finished his previous matchup against Ben Bateman. It was on the orders of Robert Meyer Burnett that Kalinowski face Sneider immediately.
Do not forget, Sneider was facing a man on a mission. Specifically, the mission to become “Mikey 3 Belts” by winning the match and then defeating Paul Oyama in New York. While Kalinowski faced exhaustion, he put up a tough fight against Sneider and Sneider did the same too. While he got a favorable category and Mike did not in Round Two, by the end of that round it was still anyone’s game. In the Final Round, Kalinowski forced Sneider to answer his two-point question, which he did. Then, when Kalinowski was forced to answer his questions, he made a mistake by only getting only one-half of his answer to the three-point question, he could not pull the answer to his final question. At that point, Sneider finally got what he had been chasing for three years: a title match against the Singles Champion.
This Saturday, with his friends and family, Jeff Sneider is going to New York City to make the most of his first crack at claiming the Movie Trivia Schmoedown Championship. He got what he’s chased for, now he must face the music. If there’s one thing he’s experienced in it’s championship matches, thanks to being part of the dominant Patriots for so long. If he can take advantage of that experience in his match against Oyama, he can certainly make his opponent sweat. Also, his skill at picking up contextual clues in tricky questions could be crucial, especially since he’ll be all on his own. If he can sharpen his skills by working with his manager Roxy Striar and teammate Marc Andreyko, he’ll be more likely to nail those tricky detail questions in the Third and Fifth Rounds of the match.
This could be Sneider’s finest hour as a solo competitor, but his opponent is seeking to continue his story.
When Paul Oyama defeated the GOAT Dan Murrell to become the youngest Movie Trivia Schmoedown Champion (that is, before Chance won in Teams), everything we knew about the Schmoedown has changed forever. Now, the title seems like it could belong to anyone, from all over the world. Anyone who has a passionate love for movies and knows a lot of trivia is a potential contender. When I wrote about the next generation of Schmoedown competitors to join in on the action, I did not anticipate that we could get some from the fan leagues. What Paul Oyama has done, along with Kevin Smets, for the fan leagues is outstanding. It has galvanized the competitors there to work hard and potentially become the next rookie to debut in the big league that is the Schmoedown.
This Saturday, Paul Oyama begins his title defense with guidance from his stablemates in The Dungeon and from his manager, Kaiser. While more people are respecting Oyama’s performances and sheer confidence, there are still several (including some in the old guard) that do not like his cocky attitude and think that he’s not a great champion. Oyama doesn’t have to defend himself against or even acknowledge those criticisms. He just has to keep proving them wrong.
In the main event, “Primetime” will be going up against a former champion; arguably not the toughest he’s ever faced but one that he cannot underestimate. Sneider’s scrappy gameplay can surprise anyyone. Oyama needs to keep performing on a high level, but this will be his first solo match in front of a live audience. It will be tricky to keep performing well. His key to victory is to adjust to the atmosphere of the live event, don’t play off it too much but don’t shy away from it as well. If he can maintain that balance, then his drive to get every answer will be there. He can’t control the questions but he can control how focused he is on digging deep in his memory for obscure pulls.
This title match is something no one can sleep on. Oyama isn’t a kid anymore, and Sneider is all-in to take his first singes title shot. As I said before, the one who claims the title belt will defend it at the main event in this year’s Schmoedown Spectacular. A big invitation to close out “The Magic Season” in a grand fashion. Sneider can be dangerous when he has most of everything going for him, but Oyama steely consistent makes him the favorite to defend the belt.
Who wants it more on a stage in front of hundreds of cheering fans cheering and many more watching live all over the globe? The world’s stage awaits these two players this Saturday… live in New York City!