Hey everyone. I apologize for the lateness of this article. It was my intention to write my Raw thoughts yesterday. But time got away from me. That’s been happening a lot lately. So instead of just talking about Monday’s episode of television from Oklahoma City, this will be an article about a couple of different topics.

This past weekend there was quite the one-two punch of news. The first of which of course was the passing of the iconic Muhammad Ali and the second being the announcement that Brock Lesnar will return to The Octagon for UFC 200 on July 9. It may seem weird saying this but I feel like this was a weird version of serendipity. Just a few hours after the world loses one sports icon known for crossing boundaries, Lesnar will be competing in two rings in two different arenas at the same time.

The similarities don’t end there as both also know how to sell themselves as attractions. Ali used his gift of gab to raise the ire and entertain fans of fighting around the world. While Brock’s attitude gets the ire of hard-core wrestling fans and MMA fans alike the question his legitimacy of both arenas. And while The Greatest never really did a full-fledged wrestling run, he used those tactics to make the fight must see. These tactics based in professional wrestling made an aura that went unmatched for quite some time. Many in the modern era, Connor McGregor, Ronda Rousey and Lesnar have also used the same philosophy to sell their fights. Those fans love them love them. And those that hate them.But they get a response. Apathy is kryptonite for a promoter and a talent. As long as you create a negative or positive response you’re doing something. So those who wonder at times why Roman Reigns or John Cena is on top that’s why.

When the news of Lesnar competing in UFC broke, many were wondering why WWE would let their big attraction back in the Octagon. Some of the rise this is a bargaining chip to bring in Ronda Rousey, Paige Van Zant or even someone else for future events. These things could very well be as they would bring in added attraction to WWE’s plans. But I think the last few days have shown why WWE did this. It’s the same reason why Muhammad Ali showed up in all of the wrestling territories. Promotion. Never underestimate the power of promotion. WWE has gotten more press and promotion from Brock’s return to UFC than they usually get this time of year. They’re getting a jump on the Summer Slam media blitz as well. And I would not be surprised if WWE is not getting a piece of the pay-per-view revenue or an ad share deal with promotion. Vince is a much better businessman than he is a creative genius at times. WWE used to promote the early UFC events on Raw when they brought in Dan Severn and Ken Shamrock. As the fighting sport had not been legalized in very many states back in the late 90s. So the two sides working together is not exactly foreign territory. UFC advertised on WWE.com when Brock debuted in the arena. It’s all about selling subscriptions/pay-per-view and that’s common ground the two companies share.

When you have a chance to promote your brand you do it especially since it can make you money regardless. This leads into Monday’s Raw an interesting way with Money in the Bank pay-per-view in two weeks. The big thing everyone was talking about Tuesday morning was John Cena’s promo against AJ Styles. Many see the face of WWE’s brand as burying the Phenomenal One with his words I don’t really see their point. John Cena compared the feeling of himself and Styles compared to the twice in a lifetime battles with the The Rock. If that’s not the ultimate rub I don’t know what is. The people are going to look at words way they want to. It’s the Internet. But it’s also promoting a fight and playing into Internet fandom will definitely generate interest in the dream match from Las Vegas. Plus, John Cena was destroyed by The Bullet Club the week before so why not get a little nasty on the mic. People need to quit being so sensitive on certain issues. Everything is not really a conspiracy. And if you live your life thinking it is then you’re never going to really enjoy anything.

Speaking of enjoying something. I watched the entire second season of WWE Network’s Swerved. The nine episodes were quite enjoyable for the simple reason that out was the shift from the show’s original premise. Instead of pulling pranks on WWE superstars, season two focuses on the WWE universe putting stars including Vince McMahon himself in interesting situations with normal people. The show works a lot better this way. And I’m sure it won’t cause as much problems behind-the-scenes that the first season did.

Where the show signs though is the scenarios with kids. I think WWE has found a nice sweet spot for the series. As they said the behind-the-scenes episode, the reactions are great. If you haven’t checked it out I highly suggest you do.

It will be interesting to see if WWE’s binge watching strategy for season two will lead to more WWE shows being released like this. Netflix does it that way as does others in the marketplace. So why not try it when episodic watching is not necessary for the series. I love seeing WWE experiment with different things as the WWE Network can be so much more than what is right now which is still a great value for the money.

And on the notes of value for money, NXT Takeover: The End is tonight as I write this. Triple H promised yesterday that this will be a metamorphosis of the WWE Internet darling. I am interested to see what exactly that means. I’m sure someone like it some won’t and most will be silent and don’t really care. But it all should be pretty fun. Thanks for reading my rambles we will have a lot going on in the next few weeks so stay tuned.