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Xavier Woods’ night of video games and sportsmanship
Recently, I asked the WWE Universe to tell me where the best video game stores are so I can visit when I'm in town. Several weeks ago, Jamie, the owner Game Underground (1251 Worcester Rd., Framingham, MA 01701 / @GameUnderground), contacted me on Twitter about checking out his establishment. I agreed and stopped by before last week’s SmackDown.
When I walked in, I met Jamie and he explained that for the past seven years, every Monday night they have many WWE fans come to the shop and they watch Raw together. They also play the latest WWE video game – “WWE 2K14” – and even have created their own competitive league.
They purchased a replica WWE Title that their champion bears to signify his dominance. They play “WWE 2K14” against each other and stream the matches online. During these bouts, commentators enhance the experience for those viewing around the world. There are cameras around the store so people watching online can see different angles of what's going on.
After this explanation, Jamie showed me around the store, which was filled with games, from Atari to PlayStation 4. There were old school arcade games, including “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” “Dance Dance Revolution,” “2DX,” and “Street Fighter.” It was literally a video game heaven … my heaven! I was introduced to the WWE fans who were in the “WWE 2K14” league, we took pictures and I signed autographs.
Then, I met him. He was the angriest 15-year old I've ever seen, a chip on one shoulder and a championship belt on the other. His name was Matty, and he exuded arrogance. He could talk trash with the best of them, and, to top it off, has been their champion for 14 consecutive months. He was out for blood! He knew I was coming and had been training, even claiming he could beat me with one hand tied behind his back. Everyone in the building booed him, as he had a horrible reputation as the most demeaning player in the league.
There were two things, however, that Matty didn't have: a loss on his record and the respect of his peers. He had a war cry that he would scream at his opponents while he dismantled them – “Yo-Mi, Yo-Mi, Yo-Mi!” He immediately issued a challenge to me, which I declined, as it would not have been fair to those in the league who are constantly struggling to gain a chance at the title. I told him that I needed to work my way up the ladder first to make things fair. And that is exactly what I did.
In a Fatal 4-Way Match, I used Chris Jericho – because I'm jealous of his jacket – and defeated three opponents, highlighted by putting Roman Reigns through a flaming table with a Codebreaker. At that point, Matty was foaming at the mouth. He was full of rage and wanted to fight. Unfortunately, I had to leave the store to go to SmackDown.
It was established that after the show, I would come back to the store to face Matty in what was dubbed “The Midnight Main Event.” Upon my return, Matty and I were about to begin our match when the doors of the building were kicked open. There stood with a man with long flowing hair, blowing in the wind. Everyone watched in awe as he bypassed them and walked up to me. He said his name was Joe and I couldn't face the title holder without going through him since he was the true No. 1 contender.
The crowd ooo'd. Joe claimed that he was never knocked from this position and never received his title opportunity. If I wanted one, I had to take it from him. Jamie stood up from the commentary table and stated that the only way this could be settled was with a “Money in the Bank Money in the Bank Match.” I immediately asked why he said it twice and the crowd explained that in their league this is what the match is called. The victor wins a small Money in the Bank briefcase that they can cash in for the larger Money in the Bank briefcase which has the contract for a championship match inside of it. Hence, “Money in the Bank Money in the Bank.” I agreed and the match began.
I again chose Jericho – once more, due to my obsession with a jacket with lights in it – and Joe chose my real-life arch rival from high school, Cody Rhodes. After an intense back-and-forth battle, Rhodes fell to a Codebreaker, and Y2J climbed the ladder to retrieve the briefcase. I won and was crowned “Mr. Money in the Bank Money in the Bank,” next in line for a championship match against Matty.
Once I made my claim, the lights went out and CM Punk's music began to play. Matty, like a scene out of a movie, came around the corner with his championship and entirely new entrance attire. We faced off, and the lights came back on.
The time for talking was done. People around the globe were watching online. The crowd was fully behind me and wanted to see this tyrant taken down. I had destroyed their entire league and made my way to the champion and his time had finally come. They had been waiting for this moment for 14 months. As I selected Jericho again, chants of "Save us!" began to fill the room until it was deafening. These people were counting on me, and I was their only hope.
Matty selected CM Punk and the match began to load. All of a sudden he said, "Oh yeah, I almost forgot.” He placed his left hand behind his back while he sat down and held the controller with his right. The crowd ooo'd again. He was really going to attempt this one-handed!?! I knew this was going to be easy, considering he was playing at such a disadvantage.
The match began. In the beginning, I was dropkicking, arm dragging and beating him into a mess. Then, I saw a smirk on his face, and the tide completely turned. The next attack I threw was reversed, as was the next and the one after that. Matty had figured out my style!
As I frantically tried to regain control, he latched on the Anaconda Vise and Jericho tapped out. The crowd at Game Underground was silent, and the champion still reigned supreme. I had no words for what just happened.
During the celebration Matty was different. He realized this and felt the need to explain that he had just been challenged by an opponent like no other. While he still did not have a loss on his record, he now had respect. He was a changed man after our match – still the champion, but now a different kind of champion, one that the people can appreciate and be proud of, a real champion.
Matty, we will meet again, and next time the outcome will not be the same.
After the match, we all stayed at Game Underground until the wee hours of the night and played tons of video games, laughed so hard that we cried and made some great new friends. Thanks for having me, guys, and I'll see you again soon!