Hello Schmoedown fans, this is Tim previewing what could be the most emotionally-wrenching championship match in the history of the Movie Trivia Schmoedown.
The greatest superteam in this league announced that this title match will be their final match, win or lose. Both of these ladies aim to end their careers on the highest note possible. Meanwhile, their challengers seek to even the count in their rivalry, and take the team titles to build up the legend of “#Mikey3Belts.”
In this Thursday’s Schmoedown Throwdown, streamed live around the world, it’s the battle between a team that wants to end their legends on an epic defense, and a team that is ready to build a legend.
For the last time, Rachel Cushing and Clarke Wolfe of The Shirewolves face Mike Kalinowski and Chance Ellison of KOrruption for the Movie Trivia Schmoedown Team Championship of the World!
At the start of this season, Mike Kalinowski made a promise that his faction KOrruption will be going for all of the belts. No matter if one person has all the belts or the belts were distributed throughout his faction, Mike wants to dominate the league with the people he recruited, despite having his corruptive powers taken away by Chairman Kristian Harloff.
Here’s a recap to their season so far: after starting with a setback when Mike lost the Innergeekdom title to Rachel Cushing, Mike and Chance came to play and dominated over World’s Finest so much that their team split up. Then, Chance Ellison faced his fan league rival Paul Oyama for the #1 Contender shot at the singles title, only to lose to him where Paul eventually became champion. Mike Kalinowski faced Kevin Smets at the Schmoedown Collision for the #1 Contender shot to face Rachel for her title at San Diego. With a determined might, Kalinowski delivered Smets’s first-ever defeat to go to San Diego to finally get his first victory and the IG title over his longtime rival.
Their next step was to make it to this Thursday’s title match by facing the Founding Fathers again. Confident in their earlier success against them, and unperturbed by that controversy, KOrruption played their best game to date, with Mike Kalinowski delivering a perfect game with Chance’s solid assistance, and both capitalizing on every single mistake that their opponents made. They were victorious yet again over what should’ve been the most powerful superteam assembled with John Rocha and Dan Murrell.
It led to a huge paradigm shift in both the Schmoedown Teams Division and the Schmoedown overall. It was at that point where many believed that Mike Kalinowski could become the first ever competitor to dominate and take all three major championship belts. When he went to San Diego and played his heart out to take his first ever victory over Rachel Cushing and retake the Innergeekdom belt, it this theory became a definite possibility.
Now, this Thursday, Mike Kalinowski will have his first opportunity to be the third double-belted champion in history when he faces his rival Rachel Cushing one last time, with her partner Clarke Wolfe, and with Chance Ellison at his side. The gravity of this matchup will be immense for him because he will be playing to get one step to “#Mikey3Belts”, and legend status, and also to even the rivalry between him and Rachel.
What he should know is that both Rachel and Clarke have faced him before and defeated him before. He will need to bring his best game and trust in his partner Chance Ellison to assist him. For Chance, this will be his first time playing in a five-round championship format. It will be crucial for Mike and manager Ken Napzok to familiarize him with rounds three through five. While Kalinowski has played perfectly in those rounds, if either of them slip up in those rounds then it will be tough for to keep up with The Shirewolves.
To take the team titles, they cannot let the gravity of their opponents’ last match take hold of them. They need to treat this like every other match they had.
Can they spoil their celebration and farewell match by taking the team titles and give Mike the second of three belts to become “#Mikey3Belts?” Rachel and Clarke will not back down to their challenge.
After regaining the team titles from The Odd Couple at Schmoedown Collision last month, it appeared that Rachel Cushing and Clarke Wolfe were set to defend against KOrruption and then the winners of the Ultimate Schmoedown Team Tournament at this year’s Schmoedown Spectacular. All of that despite Rachel losing the IG title to Kalinowski at San Diego.
But earlier this month, they sat in an interview with Kristian Harloff where they talked about their accomplishments both individually and as a team. They then dropped the news that rocked the Schmoedown community: Rachel Cushing and Clarke Wolfe will retire their Schmoedown careers. For Clarke, she said that everything that is there for her to do has been done and is confident with what she has done, including those near-losses. For Rachel, her life is becoming more hectic outside of the Schmoedown and more demanding inside the Schmoedown where the toll is becoming overwhelming.
For both women, they see the game evolving to a point where their time in the Schmoedown, for various reasons, is coming to an end. That’s even despite all the possible matchups that many fans clamored for. It was time for them to move on to their next stages of their lives.
However, what they did next was astonishing. Instead of immediately forfeiting the belts after the interview, the two decided that they will play one more time against KOrruption and go down fighting to the very end. This decision was met with acclaim from competitors and fans of the Schmoedown, who have been declaring this a much better decision than when Samm Levine immediately forfeit both the Singles and Team titles after his retirement interview.
The legacy that Rachel Cushing and Clarke Wolfe leave behind after this Thursday is one that is vital to the future success of the Movie Trivia Schmoedown. They have both competed in the Schmoedown at a time in its infancy when was an all-male competition. They have endured obstacles both in the ring and outside the ring, criticisms of their beliefs, self-anxieties to keep going, and paved the path for future competitors from other walks of life to come and compete. Both Rachel Cushing and Clarke Wolfe are trailblazers for women to compete and win championships, showing that the Schmoedown do not need a separate Women’s Division for they “are the league.”
Clarke’s time since 2016 will be a showcase of her might and classiness in the ring, despite not winning the singles belt, which many will be inspired by and follow when she leaves the ring for good. Rachel’s time since 2017 will showcase that anyone who is not an entertainment personality yet can build confidence in themselves and emerge as champions forever in the Schmoedown, just as she showed by overcoming her introversion and becoming the second double-belted champion after Samm Levine.
While there are still plenty more that they could’ve done, the legacies these two women will leave behind are those that many will say have grown the Movie Trivia Schmoedown much higher than ever before.
And now here they are, facing their common foe in Mike Kalinowski and his partner-in-crime Chance Ellison, in their last stand. While they have beaten him before in their respective solo matches, Rachel and Clarke cannot underestimate the momentum that Mike is riding on in his quest to become “#Mikey3Belts.” With his last three matches in this season, Mike has been on a tear and it is apparent that he will give The Shirewolves their toughest match to date. You could take Chance out of this match and put Mike in a handicap match against The Shirewolves, and even then he might, just might, have a shot.
For The Shirewolves to take their final title defense before retiring from competition, they must employ these two keys to victory. The first is to not get overconfident against Kalinowski. While they have beaten him before, given Cushing’s defeat to him in San Diego, they must treat him as a whole new competitor. They need to start strong in the first two rounds and match them point-for-point when Mike flexes his might in the next three. The second key is to really give it their all. It’s the last matches in their careers, there should be no reason for why Rachel and Clarke cannot make the most of it. Both of them must give their very best on every effort, every conferral, every question, and every answer. If The Shirewolves want to make their last match one to remember, for ages, they must give it their all and go down fighting to the very bitter end.
As we count down the hours to this fateful matchup, I cannot help but be reminded of how it’s related to two notable matches in the world of professional wrestling that had wrestlers competing in their final emotional matches.
The first being the most famous retirement match between Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair at Wrestlemania XXIV in 2008. A battle between the very best where in the end Shawn’s “Sweet Chin Music” ended the legendary career of “The Nature Boy,” in one of the best wrestling matches of that year.
The second being in this year during AEW’s “Double or Nothing” inaugural event where Cody Rhodes faced his brother Dustin Rhodes on his “last ride” in a match everyone wanted to see. Amid the blood and the brutality, the emotions of that match made it very memorable where in the end Cody defeated Dustin and hugged it out in an emotional finale. Whether or not it’s the end of his singles appearances, Dustin does not know. What we know is that it could be not just one of the best matches in AEW, but one of the best matches in professional wrestling overall.
The connection between these two matches with the live title match on Thursday is all about emotions. The emotional end of legends. We have seen them dominate, thrive, and grown as heroes and heroines of the stories. When it comes to the end of their time in the spotlight, we cannot help but be overwhelmed with emotional tears as they give their very best one last time.
The stage is set. While these two teams must focus on the battle at hand and not think about the emotional weight of the vent as much as possible, we cannot help but think of how it will conclude the story of one and build the story of another. It will be a celebration of multiple legacies. Both Rachel Cushing and Clarke Wolfe will give it their all this Thursday night, but who between them and KOrruption will win the title belts?
Mike Kalinowski’s momentum cannot be ignored anymore, where he and his partner Chance Ellison will make it go the distance, but The Shirewolves will be the slightest favorites because of how this match will be special to them, and that should give them the edge over KOrruption.
Emotions will run high, standing ovations will happen, and tears will be shed.