It is that time of year again! Podswoggle’s Third Annual Marcho Madness is here and it is wonderful to see how the tournament has grown. What started as a silly conversation between Rich and I has grown into a highly anticipated annual event that has its own sponsor, YouCantTeeMe.com.
For those that are unfamiliar with Marcho Madness, we take the concept of the NCAA basketball tournament and create our own mega-wrestling bracket that is simulated via the latest WWE video game.
As we have seen over the previous two tournaments, the results are always entertaining, shocking and noteworthy. Here are the updated requirements for entry:
Like any good tournament, there are some intriguing storylines. Let's look at what this year’s field brings to the table.
After falling one match short in 2011 to Matt Morgan, John Cena stormed back last year to win Marcho Madness with relative ease. Cena defeated Seth Rollins, Samoa Joe, Sting, Big Shoe, Kane and Eddie Edwards on the road to redemption. Now, Cena finds himself as a number one seed for the third time and on the road to starting another dynasty. On paper, Cena’s path looks similar to the past. Will he storm back to the championship or will he falter against a Dean Ambrose or a James Storm? Knowing Cena, it will be at the forefront of everyone’s minds.
Several men have established histories in Marcho Madness, yet always fall short of the ultimate prize. CM Punk lost in the semifinals last year and hopes to finally reach the title game as the overall number one seed. Kane has made it to the Sweet 16 and Final Four in the past and has the capabilities to get over that hump. Randy Orton, Alberto Del Rio, Jack Swagger and Big Show have also had continued successes without a championship to call their own. Matt Morgan won the first year and wants to get back, but has an uphill battle as a 15 seed. All of these men have the pedigree to make it there. Is this the year?
ROH debuted in the tournament last year and Eddie Edwards proved that it was a great idea, going all the way to the finals. This year, ROH is back with Kevin Steen breaking new ground as a 4 seed. Along with ROH, we have allotted other impressive independent champions entry in Marcho Madness. Can Eddie Kingston, Johnny Gargano and Freight Train make their mark? Don’t forget the future of WWE in NXT Superstars, who are also making their debut. Can Big E Langston make a deep run? What about Adrian Neville leaping and jumping far into the tourney? Anything is possible and the surprises very well may come from the smallest ponds.
There are shockers every year. Besides Eddie Edwards last year, Mason Ryan kept his lucky streak alive, Austin Aries made his first big impact and high profile names like Dolph Ziggler and Daniel Bryan were ousted by Primo and Jay Briscoe. What will happen this year that comes out of nowhere? Could it be a member of 3MB shaking things up? What about tournament rookies like The Prime Time Players, DOC or Kenny King? One thing is for sure: there is always something that drops your jaw. The question now is who will it be?
It is still embarrassing to admit, but some of these simulated video game matches are pretty damn good. Sure, it is expected to enjoy AJ Styles vs Austin Aries or CM Punk vs Wade Barrett, but what about Kurt Angle vs Great Khali? How could Crimson vs Abyss be so good? This tournament has those moments and 2013 is no exception. Some first-round matches that could shine are Seth Rollins vs Rob Van Dam, Antonio Cesaro vs Eddie Kingston, Bully Ray vs Jay Lethal and Randy Orton vs Mr. Anderson (for completely different reasons). You might laugh, but you never know with WWE '13.
Last year, one top seed won the whole thing (Cena), another lost in the final four (CM Punk), the third was bounced in the elite 8 (Randy Orton), and the fourth was ousted in the sweet sixteen (Alberto Del Rio). This year, Cena, CM Punk and Sheamus all have great chances to go far and Jeff Hardy will look to avoid being the lame duck top seed. But problematic opponents are on the horizon early on for all of the top seeds. Last year proved that success is possible at the top, but can it be sustained this year?
So enough analysis…it’s time to get your picks!
You gotta play to win! Channel your inner Digger Phelps, call your favorite bracketologist, and don't take Eric Young too far! It is Marcho Madness season and we couldn't be happier.