(NOTE: This review will include some spoilers for RAW.)
Brooklyn was packed for the second biggest PPV of the year. We had scores to settle, title for title matches to take place and quite the card for Summerslam. Let’s get into it.
Randy Orton vs Sheamus
Orton almost scored an RKO right away but Sheamus moved out of the way. We got “You Look Stupid” chants to which Sheamus got on the mic, replying with “I don’t look stupid”. Sheamus saying stuff like this on the mic takes away the seriousness of this lad. And that’s not good, considering that Sheamus has the Money In The Bank briefcase. Considering he’s probably going to be our next WWE World Heavyweight Champion, Sheamus looked a bit of a joke. However, it could have been a lot worse.
To be honest, after he said it, I thought as soon as he returned to the ring, Randy was gonna drop Sheamus with a successful RKO to win the match. That didn’t happen and the match went on. However, the fans interest in this match began to disappear at the start. Among the chants we got was a very loud “Ole” chant! However, the match did pick up shortly afterward, which got the fans into it again. Randy delivered a T-Bone Suplex to Sheamus over the top rope which I thought looked pretty cool. Sheamus put on a modified Clover Leaf and kept saying “ASK HIM!” as heels normally do when they’ve got a submission locked on. Chris Jericho use to do it quite a bit. What I realized though, when Sheamus had it on, was that the referee’s rarely ever actually go on ask the wrestlers if they quick! They usually just stand over them!
There was a great little spot where Sheamus lifted himself up up onto the top turnbuckle but Randy countered it into a DDT. Randy hit Sheamus with a RKO when Sheamus catapulted in him which looked awesome. Sheamus beat Orton CLEAN with two Brogue Kicks in a row. This is exactly the type of win that Sheamus needed after losing to Orton clean at Battleground. I thought this match was really good. At the start it looked a bit slow-paced but then it picked up in a big way.It was a great opener. I think this would have been better than their Battleground, had it been given a bit more time. However, considering the card, you could see why the time of this match was cut down a little.
This match seemed to go to the finishing spots rather quickly. It’s almost as if they cut a huge section of the match and then just went to the closing moments. However, despite that, it was still a good match and a great way to open the show. If there’s a rubber match at Night of Champions, Sheamus has to go over I think. However, if this is the end of the feud, at least Sheamus goes out with a win.
Prime Time Players (c) vs New Day vs Lucha Dragons vs Los Matadores for the WWE Tag Team Championship
The fans were really into the New Day for this one as Big E was doing his intro speech for their entrance. They were on fire tonight with their promo and general antics in the ring. Everybody loved them here in Brooklyn! I loved Kofi’s boots during this match, by the way
This match was a very fast-paced tag team match. There was one spot at the start of the match which I thought was pretty clever. Big E and Titus O’Neil were the legal men in the ring. However, Kofi tagged himself in… by tagging Titus. So as he tagged himself in, Big E went for the cover on Kofi in an attempt to steal the tag titles! I’m not entirely certain if that works! I thought it was clever but… not quite sure it was allowed! I mean you didn’t have to pin the champions in order to win the title. Since you can tag anyone else in order to get into the match, I guess Kofi could have tagged Titus… giving us TWO LEGAL MEN! I guess the New Day just created a new precedent in WWE!
Big E was during this match. He did a splash onto Darren Young on the ring apron which I thought looked good and then Big E began slapping Darren to the New Day clap rhythm as he had the abdominal stretch locked on! To be honest, there were a lot of good spots by everyone during this. Darren Young and Kalisto had a sequence at the start which looked incredible. People on Twitter were comparing them moves to Tekken and Mortal Kombat, which I thought was hilarious!
Titus O’Neil came in off the hot tag and was awesome during it, taking out everyone. He was incredibly over with the crowd as they rallied him on. Xaiver Woods taking out El Torito was a highlight! There were two little botches that should really be mentioned. Sin Cara botched a hurracanrana. One of the Los Matadores members was supposed to take the Tower of Doom spot near the end of the match, but he fell off the top rope. However, they were able to recover well as the other member of Los Matadores simply took the spot also involving Titus.
But other than those small minor botches, this was a sound tag team match. The New Day’s celebrations were amazing. Totally the right call by having the New Day go over. They were so over tonight and are the most over stable in the company. WWE teased the New Day defending the tag titles against Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose next. I really hope that happens! It’d be a great way to get the group into the main event picture!
Rusev vs Dolph Ziggler
I hated the commentary for this match. It was basically JBL, Jerry Lawler and Michael Cole arguing about Lana’s role in Rusev’s success so far. It was one of the times where the commentators never pay attention, that winds me right up. Firstly, because I don’t like this storyline. I don’t like the storytelling aspects of the match, and I’m really watching this because I want to see a good match between Rusev and Ziggler. The announcers weren’t paying attention to this match as they were too busy talking about Lana, not even given Rusev and Ziggler enough respect to talk about them. I can’t speak for everyone watching this but I don’t care about the storyline aspect of it because this is a bad storyline. Anyway, to the match itself.
The match wasn’t really that exciting. Ziggler’s facebuster to Rusev. off the top looked sloppy. I thought Rusev got in a few good spots, such as the flip senton onto Ziggler which looked awesome when it connected. A good ending might have improved this match slightly, but the finish here had a negative impact. It was a double count out finish meaning that this match was basically just a waste of time. They had the brawl at the end with Lana and Summer Rae also involved but it didn’t solve anything. No new developments happened during this match that changed the fans outlook into this storyline. This ending was shameful for a PPV like Summerslam. JBL actually pointed out “Nothing was solved.” JBL basically confirmed that this match was pointless and we just wasted your time. The thing is, this storyline is now going to keep GOING. It’s not doing anything for Dolph Ziggler and Rusev. Why is WWE keeping this going? After this match, why would people possibly care about a rematch at Night of Champions?
Stephen Amell and Neville vs Stardust and King Barrett
I want to point before we get into the match that the WWE production crew missed quite a lot of important stuff during this match! They missed Stephen Amell tagging himself in for the first time, which is kind of important considering he’s the celebrity in this match! They missed Stephen’s kip up, which is supposed to make Stephen look good! I was just shocked by how much they missed during this show!
To be honest, when this match was first announced, I thought they had brought in Neville to do the “heavy lifting” for the team since he was the actual wrestler of team. However, Amell was tagged in the majority of the time. He took a lot of the bumps. He didn’t deliver a great deal of offense but you wouldn’t really expect him to. I loved during the match, when King Barrett kicked Amell in the stomach. His sell to that kick was just hilarious.
Neville actually got the hot tag for his team and scored the pin. For what it was, Amell didn’t really mess anything up. I wish that Neville had a lot more time in the ring as it meant that there was a lot of pressure on Amell to take the spots in the ring. Granted, he was able to take them well. But I think with these matches were celebrities get involved, they really should be in the ring as little as possible.
Ryback (c) vs Big Show vs The Miz for the Intercontinental Championship
This was a very short triple threat match, which I think was a good thing. I think it needed to be a short and sweet triple threat and this match wasn’t actually that bad. However, there’s a few things I need to point out.
Now if you’re a 7 foot, 450lb giant, why on earth would you need to jump off the top rope? Big Show started to do diving elbow drops off the top in a number of matches. In this match, Big Show did a rolling senton off the top! This senton completely missed Ryback! I admire the effort but since when does Big Show need to do a rolling senton off the top rope?
Michael Cole mentioned that last time the Intercontinental Championship changed hands in New York City was when Albert won the title. JBL’s response was… “Albert won a title?” I love how JBL completely buried Albert’s title reign when years ago, he was praising “Tensai” like he was a Japanese wrestling legend! Great job JBL!
I almost thought Miz was going to win when he hit the Skull Crushing Finale on Ryback but Ryback kicked out at the last minute. Miz then made like six covers on both Ryback and Big Show which was pretty funny. That was actually a pretty fun spot.
I didn’t like the ending. Ryback stole the victory after Big Show had knocked out The Miz, which is what heels do. A big, tough face shouldn’t need to be sneaky in this type of match. With that in mind tough, this match was much better than I thought it was going to be. Thankfully, it didn’t go on for too long. It was short and simple and it told the storyline well. The ending kind of ruined it for me but I’m glad Ryback got the win.
Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper vs Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose
Roman Reigns got heavily booed during this match. This was a pretty fun tag team match with a lot of cool spots for everybody to get involved in. Roman Reigns got took out early on in the match, leaving Dean Ambrose on his own in the ring. Roman Reigns was out of action for so long that the fans started chanting “Roman’s Sleeping!” But as soon as he got tagged into the match, the fans started booing him! Roman just can’t get a break, can he?
I thought that the end of the match was pretty lame. All it mostly consisted of was Reigns and Ambrose dominating. There was nothing about that match that made Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper look strong at all. There was no moment where I was convinced that Bray and Luke were going to win. This match made them look really bad. However, this tag team match was still OK though. Nothing really special about it but it was a pretty fun one.
Seth Rollins (c) vs John Cena (c) for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship and the United States Championship
John Cena was overwhelming booed. Seth Rollins got a massive pop when he came out. Early on in the match, Seth Rollins did a spot where he did three dives to the outside. However, it looked like Cena was supposed to catch him for a spot the first time he did it. Were they planning another spot? It kind of looked like it to me. Despite this, Rollins looked awesome anyway and the crowds loved it. This was a pretty great match but the fans were chanting “You can’t Wrestle” at Cena. It’s one thing if you don’t like somebody. It’s another thing to watch a wrestler when he’s having a blinder of a match and still chant, “You can’t wrestle”. Cena wasn’t having the greatest match of his life, but he was doing fine. Also, when you’re in the ring with somebody as talented as Seth Rollins that can help you along, there’s little that can go wrong. The only thing I remember Cena botching was his top rope leg drop, which didn’t really connect.
There’s one issue I have about this match. It was a great match but I had an issue with Cena and Rollins using the finishing moves of so many different wrestlers. John Cena did Ric Flair’s figure four leg lock and he did the Springboard Stunner again (paying home to Stone Cold). Seth Rollins did Triple H’s Pedigree, Eddie Guerrero’s Frog Splash and Cena’s own Attitude Adjustment. When people steal other wrestler’s moves, usually it’s cool. However, Rollins and Cena were losing their own sense of identity by obviously paying homage to other wrestlers. Now Seth Rollins’ Frog Splash has probably been one of Rollins’ signature moves for years and Cena’s Springboard Stunner is now one of Cena’s signature moves. But it’s taking away from the uniqueness of Cena and Rollins if they have to use other people’s moves so blatantly to get over. With that being said though, Seth Rollins rolling Attitude Adjustment onto Cena was just incredible. He pulled it off really well and I kind of wish that was the finish of the match. It would have been a lot better than the actual finish of the match..
Summerslam guest host Jon Stewart ran down into the ring with a steel chair. After teasing a chair shot onto Rollins, he hit Cena in the gut with the chair, allowing Seth Rollins the opportunity to pin Cena with a Pedigree onto the steel chair. I HATED this ending. I mean, if this was an ending to a title match on RAW or something, maybe it’d be OK. But Jon Stewart’s interference played into the CO-MAIN EVENT of the SECOND BIGGEST PPV OF THE YEAR! That’s why this infuriates me. It was not like Jon Stewart was going to play into future WWE programming. And on RAW, WWE basically confirmed this with Cena giving an AA to Stewart. It was atrocious. It ruined such a great match between Cena and Rollins. After all the build, it ended like that.
Team Bella vs PCB vs Team B.A.D.
The fans weren’t really into this three team elimination match. I think after Team B.A.D. were eliminated, the fans’ interest just dropped. Sasha Banks was really over at Summerslam and the next night on RAW. There were “We Want Sasha” chants on RAW and I don’t think WWE really see any potential in Sasha. Considering what happened the next night on RAW with Sasha Banks nowhere to be seen, I think the attention is now focused on the Bellas and PCB. After all, Team B.A.D. were eliminated first in this match!
Brie Bella’s facebuster off the top on Tamina to eliminate her was better than Ziggler’s in his match with Rusev. The match itself was an OK divas match.
Cesaro vs Kevin Owens
Credit to Kevin Owens this weekend. He wrestled the ladder match with Finn Balor on the night before at NXT TakeOver and followed it up with this 15 minute match with Cesaro on Summerslam. He’s had to put in a lot of work over the weekend and he put in the work in this match. It was a good match between these two. I’m not sure about killing Cesaro’s momentum by having Kevin beat him clean but I guess they had to preserve Kevin.
Brock Lesnar vs Undertaker
This match was special. It was an incredible match to watch with some great story-telling on display. Undertaker and Lesnar seemed to be taking this match slow and steady which was the right call I think for this match. The fans were into it from bell to bell. There were a lot of amazing spots to take in and it was definitely better than their last match. However, the finish is what got the fans talking.
Brock Lesnar had Undertaker locked in the Kimura Lock but Undertaker was able to force Lesnar’s shoulders on the mat, causing referee Charles Robinson to come over and make the count. But as he was watching Lesnar’s shoulders, Undertaker tapped out. Charles didn’t see the tap out but the time keeper rang the bell anywhere. Charles was arguing with the time keeper and everybody was distracted when Undertaker low blowed Lesnar. Undertaker then locked in the Hell’s Gate and he made Lesnar pass out for the “official” victory.
I guess like the Cena/Rollins ending, it’s a give or take ending. I HATED the Cena/Rollins ending. The ending for Lesnar/Taker was not really what I had hoped. However, it did preserve both Undertaker and Brock Lesnar as they both won the match in their own right.