Extreme Rules 2016 Review – Extremely Fine Professional Wrestling

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Extreme Rules saw the continuation of the “new era” in WWE. Feuds and storylines continued on from Payback, with Roman Reigns and AJ Styles battling for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship once again. Chris Jericho and Dean Ambrose settled their differences in the first ever Asylum match and four men went to war in a action-packed fatal four way match for the Intercontinental Championship. The pressure was on for WWE to deliver.

 

PRE-SHOW: Baron Corbin vs Dolph Ziggler in a No Disqualification match

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Ziggler fired up on Corbin early with Corbin turning the tables by sending Ziggler over the turnbuckle Triple-H-style. He took over and there was some really nice heel offense from Corbin. He yelled at Ziggler to “stay home” which led to Ziggler’s comeback. Corbin moved out of the way for Ziggler’s elbow drop but Ziggler simply dropkicked him and did the elbow drop anyway.

Corbin hit the Deep Six. Corbin caught Ziggler off the top, to which Ziggler countered with a DDT. That was a very well executed spot. Ziggler hit the famouser but Corbin kicked out. Corbin then hit the low blow on Ziggler to which Mauro Ranallo sold tremendously on commentary. He claimed that Corbin “pulverised the plums” of Ziggler! Corbin hit the End of Days and won.

It was an OK pre-show match. The right man won and hopefully Corbin can move on to somebody else.

 

The Usos vs Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows in a tornado tag team match

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The Usos attacked Gallows and Anderson on the entrance ramp. Again I ask… who are the heels supposed to be?

The Usos ran wild until Anderson sent one of the Usos into the crowd. He came back out to do a dive. Gallows Irish Whipped an Uso into the ringpost and the duo did the Boot of Doom to the other one. This got applause from the crowd.

Anderson and Gallows battered Jey Uso with corner running attacks. They attempted a Doomsday Device but they are stopped. The Club tried the Boot of Doom but was stopped again. The Usos delivered the double superkick on Gallows and went for the the double splash but Anderson cut him off.

One of the Usos tried a Whisper in the Wind but missed. There was an cool spot when the Gallows Pole, Samoan Drop and a Spinebuster were delivered in one big sequence.

These guys were working at a really fast pace and they were doing a damn good job at it. Karl ran into the superkick from Jey. Jey did the running hip attack into the barricade, which was followed by a big clothesline by Gallows. This prompted JBL to yell “LARIATOOOO!”

Gallows grabbed the ring bell but was cut off by Jimmy’s superkick. Big Boos when the Usos took over. Jimmy went for the splash but missed which led to the Club hitting Black Magic and winning.

The right team won this. This was a fast but greatly worked match and both teams should really give themselves a pat on the back. The right team won as the Club obviously needed the clean win over the Usos.

 

Kalisto (c) vs Rusev for the United States Championship

Kalisto tried to cut Rusev down to size with a number of kicks but Rusev wasn’t budging. Rusev no-sold a springboard move, playing a great big man in this David vs Goliath match. Rusev laced Kalisto with a kick to the face and “We Want Lana” chants broke out. Rusev delivered a running elbow drop, which Kalisto kicked out of. Rusev looked very mean in this match.

There were “let’s go Rusev” and “Rusev sucks” chants, with the pro-Rusev chants winning. Rusev locked on the bearhug, with the Bulgarian going to the ground while Kalisto screamed. Michael Cole reminded us that this is a traditional match, as opposed to all the non-traditional matches in WWE history. There were small CM Punk chants IN 2016. Keep trying guys. Rusev did the torture rack, where he carried him around and taunted like a true heel powerhouse. This was great old-school stuff from Rusev.

Kalisto tried a sleeper but Rusev simply drops him, with Lana applauding. Kalisto fires up with a corckscrew springboard and hurricanrana facebuster. Kalisto did a hurricanrana to Rusev into the steel steps. That was a pretty innovate attack. Kalisto did a springboard frog splash but Rusev kicked out. Kalisto did an awesome moonsault to the outside. Rusev tossed Kalisto onto the ring apron. With injuries mounting up for WWE, why not risk another one by dropping Kalisto on the hardest part of the ring? Really good idea. Rusev tried to go for the accolade but the referee stopped him. The referee wanted to check on Kalisto. Rusev ignores him and went for PAINFUL accolade submission. Kalisto tapped out quickly and soon as Rusev stretched Kalisto out with the move. We had a new WWE United States Champion.

This did catch me off-guard as I expected Kalisto to win but the right man won. This was a fun and unique match, with the perfect use of the David vs Goliath chemistry.

The New Day cut a promo. Xaiver wants to “shoot his shot,” which led to a “shoot his shot” chant.  They talked about the time machine segment from RAW. Usually antics from the group. This got big reactions from the crowd.

Simon Gotch laid it in early on as the Vaudevillians beat up the New Day. JBL once again referenced to Leicester City’s Premier League title victory. Aiden hit a reverse stroke. Big E went for Big Ending but the Vaudevillians broke it up. They attacked Kofi on the outside.

Big E got the hot tag and delivered belly to bellys to English and Gotch and hit a big splash.

This was actually a great comeback from Big E as the New Day took over. Big E hit the big spear to Aiden English to the outside. I always love this spot but Big E really shouldn’t be doing it as much as he does it. He does not land well for him. After interference from Kofi, Xaiver hit the running knee to retain the tag titles.

This was a fine tag team match and Xaiver looked strong which is good. Xaiver doesn’t really wrestle in the tag team matches as much as Big E and Kofi, so it’s great to see him get his chance in the ring. Xaiver’s actually a good worker so it’s nice to see him involved. The right team won.

 

AJ was walking backstage. Renee interviewed him. AJ vowed to win the title, which was a case from deja vu as he essentially did the same promo from Payback. He went into the Club locker room.

 

The Miz (c) w/Maryse vs Cesaro vs Sami Zayn vs Kevin Owens for the Intercontinental Championship

Quite interesting to see the Intercontinental Championship match get a promo video beforehand. It was a pretty good one actually and it genuinely did a good job in hyping up the match.

Cesaro was casually doing press-ups in the ring during the entrances. The match got off to a flyer, with Sami blistering down to the other corner of the ring and blasting Kevin Owens with a Helluva kick. This was a very effective start-of-the-match finisher which played into the storylines and a great touch to the match. Gave me flashbacks to Survivor Series 2009, where Shawn Michaels hit Triple H with the superkick right away! Just awesome stuff.

Cesaro followed this up by running across the ring to uppercut Miz. This lead to Cesaro and Zayn having a nice one-on-one exchange between the Swiss Man and the Canadian.

Zayn took Cesaro to arm drag city, with Cesaro turning things around. Zayn then delivered hurricanranas and side kicks to Cesaro in a lovely little back and forth. Cesaro caught Zayn with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Miz got back involved, which eventually led to Zayn doing a dive to both Cesaro and Miz on the outside. Miz begged Zayn off, but Miz lured him into an attack. Miz hit his signature clothesline in the corner. There was a tower of doom spot building which was broken up by Kevin Owens. Owens actually did a good job in breaking up the spot. I saw somebody on Twitter calling Kevin Owens the “babyface of the year” for breaking up the tower of doom spot. It is insanely overdone though in fatal four ways.

Despite this, we still ended up getting one anyway. Owens took control for a few minutes but Miz and Zayn got involved to set up a double suplex spot. Cesaro swooped in and delivered the tower of doom spot. This did get a big pop though.

Do you remember a spot at WrestleMania 22, when Kurt Angle did the double German suplex spot with Randy Orton and Rey Mysterio? We saw quite the alternative during this match, when Miz got Zayn up for the Taz-Plex with Cesaro delivering the German suplex to Miz which launched Zayn. A tricky spot to pull off which didn’t exactly have the same effect as the WrestleMania spot, but it still looked sharp.

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Cesaro ran wild and delivered uppercuts to everyone. Kevin then took over with a German suplex to Cesaro. Owens clotheslined Miz and proceeded to do cannonballs to Cesaro, Miz and Zayn. Cesaro hit the uppercut to Zayn. Miz sneaked in from behind and hit the Skull Crushing Finale to Cesaro but Cesaro kicked out. A good way to build up Cesaro, considering that he was the one who got pinned later. The match was at such a fast pace that I really struggled to make notes of everything.

Miz slapped Cesaro for kicking out which led to a springboard uppercut by Cesaro. Cesaro did the Cesaro Swing to the Miz. He went for the sharpshooter but the Miz got the ropes. Maryse was dragged into ring from the sharpshooter. Miz eventually tapped but the referee was distracted. Kevin Owens tried a roll-up and then hit the bullfrog splash on Miz. Cesaro hit the neutriliser but Zayn broke it up!

We got big ole chants! The crowd was going crazy for this match! Zayn hit an awesome looking sunset flip on Cesaro but Cesaro kicked out. Cesaro hit a HUGE uppercut to Zayn! Zayn hit the Exploder Suplex.

Zayn tried the Helluva kick but he was cut off by Owens. Owens hit the Pop-up Powerbomb, went for the cover but it was broken up by Miz. Miz gave the Skull Crushing Finale to Owens on outside. He covered Cesaro but Cesaro kicked out.

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Zayn hit the Helluva kick on Ceasro but Owens threw him out. Zayn eventually got mad and beats up Owens on the outside. Miz covered Cesaro and finally won. This match was all kinds of awesome. Bravo to EVERYONE involved! Miz more than held his own against the likes of Cesaro, Zayn and Owens. They did everything they could to protect Cesaro before they finally beat him. It was a good finish with Zayn’s hatred of Owens getting the best of him as Miz sneaked away with the pin. If Zayn had stopped bullying Owens on the outside, he would have won!

Just remember kids – don’t be a bully! Be a star!

I know a lot of people were upset with The Miz retaining the title but the right man won and I’ll explain why. The story of the match was that Cesaro, Zayn and Owens all were fighting their arses of to try and win the championship, with the Miz having to resort to sneaky pin attempts throughout the match. Cesaro, Zayn and Owens all looked great in this match as the Intercontinental Championship meant everything to them. In fact, they all looked BETTER than The Miz.

Zayn tried over and over again to win the match but Kevin Owens cut him off every time. He hit the Helluva kick one last time but Owens broke it up again. This enraged Zayn so much that he simply decided to just try and beat Owens to a pulp, as it’s the only way that he’ll get him out of the picture. He’s blinded by rage so much though that he allowed Miz to steal the pin and finally retain the title.

You didn’t bury Zayn, as he had the match won. You didn’t bury Cesaro, as he kicked out of all sorts of moves. You didn’t bury Owens, as he was one of the smartest wrestlers in this match. You didn’t bury Miz, as he WON THE MATCH. Everybody got over and the challengers all qualified for the Money In The Bank match anyway, so who really cares if the Miz got the pin?

This was quite possibly the best match shown on the main roster in all of 2016 so far and it involved… THE MIZ.

Dean Ambrose vs Chris Jericho in an Asylum match

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They played “creepy” music as the Asylum cage came down and we got a Perry Saturn reference from JBL. You could tell from the get-go that this was going to be… weird.

Jericho ran to the door right away but Ambrose stops him. This match couldn’t end via escape. Ambrose grated his face with the cage. I respect Jericho for working the match in those jeans.

Ambrose smashed Jericho into the cage walls. Ambrose has some serious pondering to do as he went for the mop and the bucket but Jericho stopped him.

Think about this for a minute. In a match where weapons such as 2x4s are available, Ambrose went for the mop. As far as the structure of the match and the “build” up to the best weapon until last deal, it would make sense for Jericho and Ambrose to use the “weaker” weapons first. However I’d imagine that if I could go for any of those weapons during an actual fight, I would not go for a mop. It’s like bringing a knife to a gun fight.

 

Charlotte (c) vs Natalya in a submission match for the WWE Women’s Championship. If Ric Flair interjected himself into the match, Charlotte would lose the title.

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I’ve not been a fan of Charlotte during her title reign. In the seven days between the RAW before Extreme Rules and the RAW after Extreme Rules, the WWE found a way to make me utterly detest the idea of Charlotte being the top star on the women’s roster. The main event segment of RAW with Charlotte and Natalya did little to help with the promotion of this match. Then I watched the match. Infuriating…

Someone on Twitter mentioned that they totally expected Ric to come to the ring in a disguise to interfere. I actually would have forgiven everything bad about this Charlotte/Natalya feud if they had Ric Flair come out in some clever disguise. I just wish he came out as himself but with a GIANT mustache, which completely fools Natalya! Natalya ended up getting fooled twice in this match so if you’re going to make Natalya out to be a complete fool, at least do it in the most entertaining way possible! The finish of the Payback saw a Montreal Screwjob so why not do another completely ridiculous finish?

We got early Sharpshooter attempts by Natalya. Momentum in the match switched back and forth. Charlotte delivered a chin-lock but a snapmare by Natalya turned the tide.
Natalya hit the discuss clothesline and forearms, and the girls did some moves.
Charlotte went for figure-four but Nat countered this into an ARMBAR which led to the dead-lift spot from Charlotte.

Roman Reigns (c) vs AJ Styles in an Extreme Rules match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship

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Then we got the main event of the evening and it was quite a main event. We got big boos for Roman and big cheers for AJ. We also got a “Roman is Anoai-ng” sign from the crowd! We got a lovely little striking battle between AJ and Roman. AJ grabbed the chair but Roman cut him off. Roman grabbed the chair and went for a chair shot, but AJ moved out of the way. They battled into the crowd and even fought into the kick-off panel area. Roman threw him into the panel table, which looked like it sucked for AJ.

AJ then fired back with a Phenomenal Forearm off the kick-off table. AJ mocked Roman’s roar as they made it back into the ringside area. AJ took away the protective floor padding. A Styles Clash there would have been really nasty but Roman fought out of it. Roman went for a powerbomb but AJ punched his way out of it. They landed on the German announce table. A Styles Clash on the announce table was countered by Reigns, who backdropped AJ through the table. Styles landed right on his arse and it looked very painful for the phenomenal one. After all, AJ does get some serious air time with these backdrops that he takes!

Following that move and a big Batista Bomb by Roman in the ring (which looked great), we got “you still suck” chants from the crowd. This was a good chant for Roman as the fans acknowledged that what he did was cool but they still just didn’t like him. At least the crowd notices that what you did was awesome.

AJ did the chop block and suplexed Roman into the turnbuckle. AJ hit the running knee. Roman caught AJ’s attempt at a hurricanrana on the outside and SWUNG AJ into the ring post and the barricade before powerbombing AJ through another announce table. This was a great spot for Roman and AJ did a great job in making the guy look good.

To make sure that it wasn’t a completely one-sided beating, Roman missed a spear through the barricade. This was all great stuff. Roman then countered a Phenomenal Forerarm with a Superman punch. A great counter from the Samoan.

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Roman then speared AJ on the floor. AJ took some serious hits during this match, which is probably why WWE did all their best to protect him physically in the few weeks before the pay-per-view. As pointed out by Bryan Alvarez, AJ Styles is ridiculously great. Gallows and Andrson came out and hit the Boot of Doom on Roman. They rolled AJ into the cover but Reigns kicked out. The Usos run out and hit everyone with super kicks! This was quite the super kick party as they battered AJ. They did the Uso Splash but AJ kicked out. The brawl between the tag teams continued with Roman giving Superman Punches to Gallows and Anderson. AJ then hit the Styles Clash but Roman kicked out.

AJ caught Roman’s Superman Punch with a Pele kick. Some great stuff. Styles then hit Roman with the Styles Clash on the chair, which got a two count. Then we got the best spot in the entire match in my opinion. AJ, after everything that’s happened with Gallows, Anderson, Usos and Roman, completely snaps. He grabs a chair and unleashes hell of Roman Reigns, Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso. The crowd is going crazy as AJ lays waste to everyone with chairs in an incredible 30 seconds of the match. I wish that AJ won the match off that but he didn’t. Roman got the victory by catching AJ coming off the top rope and hit him with a spear. AN INCREDIBLE MATCH.

People were upset with the finish of this one as Roman Reigns went over. However, AJ Styles put on the performance of a lifetime in order to make Roman out to be a star. Think of every wrestler than Roman Reigns has faced since his big push began. He’s wrestled against the likes of Daniel Bryan and Brock Lesnar but it was still hard to take him seriously as a main event star. He had good matches with Daniel Bryan and he did look good in taking the beating from Brock Lesnar. However, AJ is the first wrestler to make Roman seem like an actual Superman in the WWE. AJ sold and sold moves like crazy and did everything in his power to put Roman Reigns over. He did lose the match clean and he did take a lot of punishment, but I do personally believe that big things are ahead for AJ after this performance. You know why? Because he made Vince McMahon’s golden boy out to be such a star to the point where even Roman Reigns’ detractors are acknowledging that he’s doing some badass moves in this main event with AJ. I personally believe that this was much better than their Payback match. I did say that the Intercontinental title match may have been the best main roster match of the year, but this match is a incredibly close rival. This match was ever so good.

So following all of this, Seth Rollins appears to an insane pop. Seth hit the Pedigree on Roman and held up the WWE World title to make his return after six months out with an injury. I did not expect this to happen but I think this could lead to something great happening in their title match at Money In The Bank…

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I’m not going to lie… I thought Payback was a better pay-per-view than Extreme Rules. With that said though, NOTHING that happened at Payback was better than the Intercontinental title match and the main event match of Extreme Rules. Those two matches were something to behold. Everyone of the six men involved in those two matches came off as such stars to me. Even Gallows, Anderson and the Usos looked good and their tag match was actually pretty good. I think Payback was the better show but I think Extreme Rules did a much better job in sending the storylines and direction of the company in the right direction.

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26/05/2014 RAW Review – Wyatt’s Target Jerry Lawler In Payback Go-Home Show

Hell yeah, guess who’s back. It’s me, it’s me. It’s the Armbar Express’ Tom Robinson. The wrestling writer of the millennium back from a couple of months of inactivity due to University commitments. But now, I want to do a bit more with this blog. And for starters is this RAW REVIEW! So let’s get to it!

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Triple H/Stephanie McMahon Segment

One of the Principle Owners Of WWE Stephanie McMahon and one of the other Principle Owners Of WWE Triple H kicked off RAW. The power couple both had agendas to take care off tonight on RAW. Triple H, along with Evolution, was looking to settle the score with the Shield and Stephanie McMahon was hoping for Daniel Bryan to surrender the WWE World Heavyweight Championship to her. Before taking care of that business, there was someone else on the Authority’s agenda… RAW General Manager Brad Maddox. The couple slated Maddox for allowing the Shield to interject themselves into Batista’s match with Seth Rollins last week. While Maddox argued that he had no choice under threat of getting his ass kicked by the Shield, Stephanie said that they also had no choice… AND SUMMONED KANE! Kane made short work of Brad Maddox who was relived of his duties as RAW General Manager.

I’m truly amazed that Brad Maddox lasted this long as RAW GM. He lasted almost a year… sort of in charge. Brad was a good character and very charismatic. But being overshadowed by the Authority, Maddox was providing much as General Manager anyway. I think the WWE will want to appoint someone with a bit more buzz about him. When Maddox came in, he was still rather unknown of a character. I think they want someone that on-camera would have a bit of a backbone and prove a lot more of an authority than Maddox. Hell, they want the EXACT OPPOSITE of what Maddox want and you have to believe that they have someone in mind. The question is… who?

 

Cesaro vs RVD

A very solid match between Cesaro and Rob Van Dam in a number one contender vs number one contender match. Cesaro and RVD are challenging for the US and Intercontinental titles respectively at Payback. And one of those champions were on commentary duty! And GOOD NEWS! Bad News Barrett was chosen for the job! Barrett was gold at the booth. I wished they let him talk a lot more while he was out there. The match itself was really good. In the past, these two have struggled to click for some reason but this match was a real improvement. It was a lot more slick of an exchange between the two. After interference from BNB (who RVD had booted in the face during the match) Cesaro scored the victory with a German suplex. Cesaro’s celebration was cut short by a Brogue Kick courtesy of the Celtic Warrior Sheamus. It’s a nice way to build up these two mid-card matches at Payback with these exchanges.

 

Eva Marie vs Summer Rae

Oh gees. I really wanted to skip this match but with my duties as a wrestling critic… I had no choice. A minute long “Total Divas” match between Summer Rae and Eva Marie. The WWE made quite a deal with Eva Marie being on Maxim’s Top 100. Now I’m sorry but.. Am I the only person that does not finds her that attractive? Now I know this not really talking about wrestling but I am not a guy that likes a girl that floods her face with make-up like Eva does. Fair enough without the make-up she looks decent, but I cannot get over WWE’s attempt to make her look like a horrible Jessica Rabbit. I mean there are a lot of divas on the roster that look a lot better than her. Her opponent tonight Summer Rae for example. Only difference is she can go in the ring. This match wasn’t one to show that. I will go through exactly what happened in the entire match right now…

  1. Eva hit a forearm to Summer.
  2. Eva stomped on Summer and blew a kiss a couple of times.
  3. Summer reverse the throw to the turnbuckle and stomped on Eva.
  4. Summer threw Eva across the ring which got a 2 count.
  5. Summer slammed Eva’s face to the mat a couple of times.
  6. Fandango and Layla came out and distracted Summer allowing Eva to get the pin. Fin.

Yeah. I mean I get that Total Divas have been, somewhat, a success since it started. However, I cannot be done with matches like this. Fair enough they progressed the Summer Rae/Layla program but this was really a total wash.

 

Drew McIntyre vs El Torito

Oh man! I did some laughing at the finish of this one. The El Torito/3MB program was still going, YES, STILL GOING! Drew McIntyre fought El Torito and was basically throwing him around for a minute or so. He was trying to stalk him and my god, could he have looked any more creepy? Look at this…

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I mean if WWE ever wanted to their own version of Samuel Shaw, Drew would be perfect for the job!

Now to the finish. Drew attempted to hit a superplex on Torito which saw Los Matadores interfere. 3MB laid them out and while they were brawling on the outside, Torito tripped Drew on the turnbuckle… and that was the finish! The turnbuckle wasn’t exposed or anything. It was just a standard turnbuckle! I truly believe that someone has never been pinned of being dropped on the turnbuckle. Just on that alone. I was just pissing myself laughing. You couldn’t give this match a lot more of a legit ending?

Post-match, 3MB beatdown El Torito. And then Hornswoggle proceeded to RIP OFF El Torito’s tail. Yes this legitimately happened! The Bull’s tail got ripped off by Hornswoggle. That is literally the first time someone have ever uttered that sentence. Anyway, Torito ran backstage and the tail was shoved into the bull’s ass (At this point, you’d start to wonder if you were reading a wrestling review or erotica!) Basically this was a comedy segment to tell you that things between Torito and Horsnwoggle are far from over. These two will embark in one last encounter at the Payback Pre-Show! Mask vs Hair! While I doubt this will come close to the classic at Extreme Rules, this should be something!

 

Wyatts Target Jerry Lawler

Bray Wyatt cut a stellar promo as always about John Cena and their last man standing match at Payback. He then targeted Cena’s number one fan at the commentary booth Jerry Lawler inviting him to the ring. He send Harper and Rowan after Lawler until JBL tires to save King. However, JBL paid the price and recieved a hell of a clothesline for his sacrifice. Finally, Lawler reluctantly went into the ring with Wyatt seemingly about to attack Jerry when Cena comes down to try and make the save. However, Cena was held back by Harper and Rowan. Bray was about to hit Sister Abigail on Jerry until the Usos evened the odds for Cena. Cena and the Usos cleared the ring and Cena grabbed the mic. Cena said Bray has become corrupt with power and vowed to end Wyatt at Payback.

This segment was really good. This was very interesting to watch and not only did Wyatt cut a great promo, so did Cena. This was a quality 10-15 minutes or so. I’ve not particularly enjoyed the last few weeks of the feud but this was REALLY good. I really do look forward to seeing what happens at Payback.

 

Rusev vs Zack Ryder

In the spirit of the USA’s Memorial Day, Zack Ryder waived the American Flag for the US and was inevitably squashed by the mighty brute Rusev. After Ryder got fed to the wolves, Big E made the save and actually won a brawl with Rusev. Big E picked up the flag waiving it around to end this segment. I like that Big E’s actually doing something post-IC-Title-loss but the prospect of him being beaten by Rusev doesn’t sit right with me as I really want Big E to get a big push. I guess we’ll have to wait on that one but at least Big E got a small victory here. 🙂

 

Evolution vs The Brotherhood

Due to a backstage encounter between Evolution’s Randy Orton and Batista, and The Brotherhood, a tag match was set up to settle the score. It was an OK match and Goldust looked really sharp in there. Orton landed a peach of a mid-air RKO to Cody Rhodes to and an unnecessary second RKO to seemingly win the match for Evolution. But then it was decided that this match was actually a No Holds Barred elimination match, leaving Goldust alone against Batista and Orton. Let’s explore that a moment. If the match was a No Holds Barred… why did Cody Rhodes go back to the locker room? If it was No Holds Barred, he could have helped Goldust. Was this Cody acting heel-ish and the commentators failed to mention it? Regardless, Batista and Orton made quick work of Goldust to win the match.

 

Bo Dallas RAW Debut

Bo Dallas made his RAW debut against New Sin Cara and made quick work of Cara for the victory. Dallas celebrated his victory as if he just won the Olympics and even shaked Sin Cara’s hand! I’m not sure I like him in the ring but damn he’s got a great gimmick right now! When he did a lap of the ring, I was in bits! He reminds me of Kurt Angle when he first debuted in the WWE. When he first arrived he was very much like Bo is now. Bo is pulling it off really well right now and this character could lead to great things for Bo. For a while I wasn’t much of a Boliever, but I’m starting to convert!

 

Stephanie McMahon/Daniel Bryan Segment

Next up was for Daniel Bryan to make his decision about surrendering the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Stephanie called for Daniel to give up the belt so we could have an active champion. Daniel admitted that the injury was much worse than he feared but refused to give up the belts. Stephanie then brought up his wife Brie Bella pushing her on RAW a couple of weeks ago. Stephanie gave Bryan up until Payback to give up the belts. If not… Brie was FIRED!

I think this segment has convinced me that WWE are not going to strip the belt off Bryan which really pisses me off. They’re holding off him dropping the belt and it’s becoming the same old thing week in week out. Give up the belt! NO! Give up the belt! NO! The title not being defended at a PPV is damaging to the belt’s prestige and I personally believe they should use the 30 Day Mandatory Title Defence Rule and just strip him. As much as this is going to piss of the IWC and his many fans, it’s the right thing to do because a champion needs to defend it. There’s nothing stopping Bryan from winning it again when he comes back. It just makes him look like a joke champion when he’s showing up on RAW with a neck brace every week. It’s gonna ruffle some feathers but it needs to be done.

 

Alicia Fox vs Emma

OK divas match which ended in Emma rolling up Alicia Fox for the win. Yeah, the number one contender for the Divas Title losing to Emma. The fact that one victory over Paige warrants a title shot is ridiculous enough. How does this loss make her remotely a formidable challenger to Paige? Alicia Fox’s new gimmick… is lame. Pure and simple. This is AJ Lee being redone in a really shit way. Fox cannot play this character off at all. Ripping shit up, stealing shit – it’s been horrible to watch. If Paige loses the belt to Alicia at Payback, I am really gonna be steamed.

 

Damien Sandow vs Adam Rose

Damien Sandow, dressed as Davey Crockett, took on Adam Rose in a short match that was interrupted by Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter. Rose won but was attacked by Swagger. Rose made a comeback and forced Swagger out of the ring. This whole thing was… lame.

 

Alberto Del Rio vs Sheamus

Del Rio and Sheamus. An alright match which saw Sheamus picking up the win. I just wanna mention something. Before her segment with Bryan, Stephanie approached Del Rio probably about replacing Bryan as champion. Now how does him having that segment and then LOSING a match to the US Champion make him at all a world title contender? Really?

 

And a nice brawl to end off RAW between The Shield and Evolution. It was an alright RAW. Better than average I’ll give it because the brawl at the end of the show and the Wyatt/Cena segment were both really good. I know I’ve hardly mentioned the brawl between Evolution/Shield. It was good but it’s nothing that we haven’t seen week in, week out between these two. I’m not saying it’s bad, but at the end of a 3 hour RAW you have lost a lot of interest. It just drags on and I am really not a fan of a three hour WWE event that is not a PPV. The fans get burnt out at the end and you really can’t be bothered to keep up with it. However, this was a nice go-home show before Payback.

News: Fatal Four Way For Tag Team Titles Announced For Wrestlemania XXX

NEWS! Another match has been announced for the granddaddy of them all Wrestlemania XXX! It’s another title match for you guys to feast your eyes on as the newly crowned WWE Tag Team Champions The Usos are defending their titles against not one, not two but THREE different tag teams at the event!

And those tag teams are….

“The Real Americans” Jack Swagger and Antonio Cesaro….

“Los Matadores” Fernando and Diego (along with El Torito… the greatest midget in wrestling history!)

and “Rybaxel” Curtis Axel and THE BIG GUY Ryback!

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I think it’s safe to say that we were all expecting the tag team titles to be on the line at Wrestlemania. The tag team division has received a lot exposure in WWE in the last couple of years and it would have been unjust not to have the belts on the line. I’m surprised that the Real Americans are in the match considering the storyline involving Swagger and Cesaro. I would have figured that either Swagger or Cesaro would fight for the Intercontinental title… or each other. Then again, if the Shield has proved us anything is that you can’t assume that a team is gonna split up or not anymore. Hell, Cesaro and Swagger might both turn face on Zeb Colter. Los Matadores are also a team I never expected to be in, largely due to WWE hardly ever utilizing them on RAW or SmackDown! these days. I will allow these teams to be in the match because I know there’s now a possibility that Antonio Cesaro is gonna swing around El Torito! I should open a pool of how many times or how long Cesaro is going to swing that bull around! I’m going to mark out if Cesaro actually does it!

And lastly… Rybaxel! Let’s be honest… we’re all here to see THE BIG GUY! Curtis Axel is a class wrestler but Ryback… is Ryback! Speaking of things I really want to see… I really want to see Ryback give El Torito a Shellshock! He could do it with on arm if you think about it! At least have Ryback attempt because I really want to see what it looked like! I just want to state for the record that I’m a huge El Torito mark! But I’m an even bigger mark for the Big Guy!

This seems a forgone conclusion of a match, but I still think it’ll be a nice little match for us to enjoy. We’re gonna get high-flying action! We’re gonna get THE BIG GUY! We’re gonna get people being swung around! And we’re going to see El Torito! I think this fatal four way will be a great addition to the PPV!

2013 NoDQ.com Awards – My Vote For… Tag Team Of The Year

nodq2012

Next up… the 2013 NoDQ.com Tag Team Of The Year Award. A great year for tag team wrestling. We saw a lot of tag teams come out of the shadows and step into the spotlight in WWE and TNA. A lot of great action. The Usos vs The Shield at Money In The Bank will no doubt go down as one of my favorite matches of the year. And to be honest, all of these teams have a legit claim to be tag team of the year. And the nominations are….

The Shield (Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins) – After their arrival at Sruvivor Series 2012, The Shield dominated. Their dominance were further solidified when all 3 members acquired gold at Extreme Rules. Dean Ambrose got the US Title and the team of Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins won the tag team gold. Since then, Reigns and Rollins slew all that stood in their way including The Prime Time Players and The Usos in a stellar match at Money In The Bank. Despite losing the belts in October, The Shield are still strong in the WWE spectrum and they could go from strength to strength in time. Notable matches: vs The Usos at Money In The Bank, vs The Rhodes Brothers at Battleground, vs The Rhodes Brothers on RAW

Team Hell-No (Daniel Bryan and Kane) – This dysfunctional duo continued to show their dominance as the tag team champions with victories over Team Rhodes-Scholars at Royal Rumble, and Dolph Ziggler and Big E Langston at Wrestlemania 29. However, there was one team that were always having their numbers – The Shield. The duo lost the belts to them at Extreme Rules which resulted in the unit breaking down over Daniel’s obsession with “being the weak link”. However, before splitting off the two teamed with Randy Orton to be the first 6 man team to defeat The Shield on an episode of SmackDown! Notable Matches: w/Undertaker vs The Shield in England, vs The Shield at Extreme Rules, w/Randy Orton vs The Shield on SmackDown!

Bad Influence (Christopher Daniels and Kazarian) – The ever-cocky team of Daniels and Kazarian continued their shenanigans in TNA after winning the tag team titles TWICE in 2012. Despite not winning the belts this year, they came close at the Lockdown and Slammiversary PPVs. The two turned their focused to the singles tournament called the “Bound For Glory Series”, which both men were apart of. The two tried everything they could to get themselves in the top 4, even as far as getting themselves counted out in a match against one another to recieve 2 points each. They even created an alliance with Bobby Roode called E.G.O. to ensure one of them won the tournament. Despite not winning the series, the two could both be set to breakthrough big time in 2014. Notable Matches: vs Roode and Aries vs Chavo and Hernandez at Lockdown, Fatal Four Way Elimination Match at Slammiversary, vs The Main Event Mafia on IMPACT!

The Usos (Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso) – After years of negligance in the tag team division, WWE finally gave The Usos a proper purpose in the company. It wasn’t real until June where the team really got rolling. After donning facepaint similar to their deceased uncle Eddie Fatu, the Usos began a winning streak in the tag division. Knocking off The Prime Time Players and even Team Rhodes-Scholars, two became number one contenders for the tag titles at Money In The Bank. Along with Christian, they even became the second six man tag team to defeat The Shield on an episode of SmackDown! In an incredible tag team match on the PPV against Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns, the brothers only JUST failed to win the tag titles. Despite the loss, the duo still became prominent figures in the resistance against The Authority. Neither Uso was eliminated by the Shield in an 11 on 3 handicap match and they became number one contenders once more. At Hell In A Cell, they recieved their title shot in a 3 way against The Shield and The Rhodes Brothers. However, they fell once more. Will 2014 be the year that The Usos finally climb to the top of the tag team division? Notable matches: vs The Shield at Money In The Bank, w/9 other men vs The Shield on RAW, vs The Shield vs The Rhodes Brothers at Hell In A Cell

The Rhodes Brothers (Cody Rhodes and Goldust) – After Cody Rhodes was fired by COO Triple H, Goldust fought WWE Champion Randy Orton on RAW trying to win Cody’s job back. However he was unsuccessful in upsetting the WWE Champion. Cody and Goldust were given one last chance to regain their jobs in WWE when they fought Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins of the Shield at Battleground. The brothers were successful and followed up getting their jobs back by winning the WWE Tag Team Championship on RAW. For the first time, the sons of Dusty Rhodes were tag team champions together in the WWE. Notable matches: vs The Sheild at Battleground, vs The Shield on RAW, vs The Shield vs The Usos at Hell In A Cell

Bobby Roode and Austin Aries – Both Roode and Aries started teaming together when they were both feuding with Jeff Hardy for the TNA World Title. The two united against Jeff in a triple threat elimination match for the title at Genesis. However, neither man were able to walk away with the gold. The two focused their attention to the tag team gold and they were able to capture the belts in England. The two successfully retained the belts at Lockdown, but lost the belts to Chavo and Hernandez on an episode of IMPACT shortly afterwards. The two tried to regain the belts at Slammiversary but failed to regain the belts. Unlike Bad Influence, the alliance between the two ended when they both entered the Bound For Glory Series. Notable matches: vs Jeff Hardy (Triple Threat Match) at Genesis, vs Bad Influence vs Chavo and Hernandez at Lockdown, Fatal Four Way Elimination Match at Slammiversary

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So which of these tag teams deserve the award for tag team of the year? Firstly, Roodes/Aries, The Rhodes Brothers and Team Hell-No are all out of this. All of these time were only together for a little while in 2013 to be considered tag team of the year. Yeah, Team Hell-No were a great tag team but they were only really together for 4 months in 2013. The tag team of the year has to have been a unit for the majority of 2013 to be in with a shot of winning. So that leaves Bad Influence, The Usos and The Shield. As much as I enjoy watching Daniels and Kazarain as a team, they’ve not had much to do in 2013. In comparison to 2012, they seemed like just another tag team in TNA and TNA should have given them a lot more to do.

Which leaves The Usos and The Shield. I’m going to slightly give this Usos purely because they are more of a natural tag team than The Shield. The Shield normally wrestles as a trio than a duo. As far as being a tag team is concerned they are OK, and they’ve had some decent matches together. But their more like two individuals than a tag team if you get what I mean. Reigns and Rollins both share two vastly different. The Usos gel together as a team and they have similar wrestling styles which is why they work well as a team. The Usos have had these new drive and have really made a huge impact since their push and they’re being utilized a great deal in WWE now. I really hope we see an Uso title reign next year.

To vote, simply click on the link below to vote for what you think was the best tag team of 2013!

http://nodq.com/polls/387966328.shtml

WWE Money In The Bank 2013 Review – The Viper Slithers His Way To The Money In The Bank Briefcase

WARNING: This was written without taking the latest RAW or SmackDown! in account. I started writing it on Monday before RAW.

Hey wrestling fans, I’m The “Intellectual Saviour Of The Masses” Tom Robinson here with the Money In The Bank PPV REVIEW!

Amazing fans at Money In The Bank in Philadelphia but did the action in the ring justify the epic audience?

 

Usos and The Shield Steal The Errrr…. Pre-Show

SETH ROLLINS AND AN USO: I really wish this match showed up on the main show.

SETH ROLLINS AND AN USO: I really wish this match showed up on the main show.

Amazing tag team match between The Usos and Shield members Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins. It was a shame this match didn’t make the PPV because these 4 put on a great show. It’s a good way to showcase the talent of the Usos and despite not winning they looked really strong against The Shield. The Usos will eventually get them belts, but in order for that to happen they need to fight high-profile teams and keep up their momentum so when they fight The Shield again they are a more legitimate threat. But superb start to those that watched it, and matches this good on the pre-show will encourage more to watch pre-shows and in a way – that’s good for business.

 

 

Damien Sandow steals Money In The Bank from Cody Rhodes

CODY RHODES: Cody owned this ladder match and everyone else in it.

CODY RHODES: Cody owned this ladder match and everyone else in it.

Short but sweet Money In The Bank between these 7 heels. It was amazing when The Shield and The Usos got involved near the end. Things got so chaotic and it was cool to see Dean Ambrose “skin the cat” on the ladder if you will, pulling himself up on the ladder tying to retrieve the briefcase. But the star of the show was Cody Rhodes. WWE booked him so well in this match. He was a dominant force. He laid out everyone with Cross Rhodes’ and took out about 8 people by pushing Ambrose off the ladder onto the “sea of humanity”. But just as he was about to win, his “best friend” Damien Sandow shoved him off the ladder and stole the briefcase right from underneath Cody’s nose. Not sure whether Damien Sandow should have won it over guys like Wade Barrett or Cody Rhodes but I’m not bothered about him winning it. I’ll accept it and his potential feud with Cody could be a good one. You know what else? Fandango DIDN’T win it. Yes. I was ecstatic about him NOT winning. Oh and by the way. Someone posted on Twitter that Fandango doing a flip powerbomb off the ladder proved he can wrestler… did it fuck. It just proves he’s flexible. It doesn’t mean jack. Big deal. He did a powerbomb off the ladder. Like that isn’t the most overdone spot in ladder match history. Sorry Fandango. You’re not winning me over that easily. Also I approve of the sign that said “If Fandango wins, we riot!” Great threat. 🙂

 

 

Philadelphia’s admiration and respect of Paul Heyman steals the attention from Curtis Axel vs The Miz

THE MIZ AND CURTIS AXEL: Figure-Four-Leg-Lock slapped onto the Intercontinental Champion

THE MIZ AND CURTIS AXEL: Figure-Four-Leg-Lock slapped onto the Intercontinental Champion

An OK match between Curtis Axel and The Miz for the Intercontinental title but the main story was the amped up Philly crowd’s love for Paul Heyman due to his connection with ECW (who’s headquarters was at Philadelphia). And the fans were PISSED when Heyman got ejected from the match. But the match would end up seeing Axel pick up the win over The Miz. I’m seriously hoping that Axel gets better competition for his title now. Maybe CM Punk after he’s done with Brock Lesnar. That’d give the belt some serious prestige that it ultimately needs after Miz fighting for the title about 50 times in the last 4 months.

 

AJ Lee steals Kaitlyn’s pride winning their rematch from Payback

KAITLYN AND AJ LEE: Dropkick, bitch!

KAITLYN AND AJ LEE: Dropkick, bitch!

AJ Lee and Kaitlyn fought once more for the Divas Title. Their match at Payback was great but their rematch here at Money In The Bank was a bit of a let down. I thought it was better than the average women’s match don’t get me wrong, but this had nothing on their Payback match. This match wasn’t much special to be frank and had a rather bland ending. You’d figure Layla would have at least turned heel or something since she was out there managing Kaitlyn (because apparently she hasn’t got anything better to do). AJ made Kaitlyn tap to the Black Widow and this seemed a really dry way to end the match if you know what I mean. This ending didn’t create branches for other feuds or anything and that is what a good feud should do. It’s not great for the Divas title. There is currently no feud lined up for AJ other than with Dolph Ziggler (we’ll get to that) and it’s not good for the divas division if champion AJ is not feuding with other divas. Way to make your other divas seem insignificant.

 

Ryback steals the win from Chris Jericho with a roll up… REALLY?

RYBACK AND CHRIS JERICHO: Ryback into total control of Chris Jericho as he yells at him.

RYBACK AND CHRIS JERICHO: Ryback into total control of Chris Jericho as he yells at him.

First of all, I want to say this was one of Ryback’s best matches since he re-debuted in April 2012. Chris Jericho can have a good match with pretty much anyone and this match with Ryback proved it. I loved the bit where Jericho countered the Shell-Shocked into a DDT. That looked pretty good considering the size of his opponent. Ryback actually delivered a good showing and he finally got a pay-per-view win for the first time in actually a YEAR. Good. He’s back on the rebound after months of losing big time matches with the likes of CM Punk, John Cena, Mark Henry and The Shield. But I didn’t like the way it ended… a roll up. OK… really? Surely a Shell-Shocked should have ended it or something a little more effective. This just makes Ryback look weak in a way. Sure he put on a good match, but he got a typical heel victory. WWE have to make Ryback more than just a typical heel. They’ve got to make him look like a SERIOUS monster. I’m guessing that they’ll have Ryback finish off Jericho in some form on RAW or SmackDown! (written before watching either RAW or SmackDown!) because the feud can’t end like this.

 

AJ Lee inadvertently steals the World Title from Dolph Ziggler, as Del Rio retains at Money In The Bank

ALBERTO DEL RIO AND DOLPH ZIGGLER: Damn, what a German suplex.

ALBERTO DEL RIO AND DOLPH ZIGGLER: Damn, what a German suplex.

Really want to continue the theme of “stealing” with the sub-headings for some reason. Anyway, a quality match between Dolph Ziggler and Alberto Del Rio for the World Title. It was a great match with quality counter after the counter. I loved the bit where Del Rio countered the Fame-Asser into a German suplex that looked really well done. These two have some great chemistry in the ring for some reason. You couldn’t really see this in their Payback match because of Ziggler’s concussion storyline. These two had a great showing. Also I loved the elevation of Ziggler’s dropkick when he did a mid-air dropkick on Del Rio after Del Rio came off the rope. It looked amazing. But of course, Ziggler would not walk away champion as AJ Lee mistakenly hit Del Rio with her divas title causing a DQ loss for Ziggler. Now as much as everyone will talk ill about the ending considering how great a match this was being, I didn’t mind. I think the AJ and Ziggler break up was inevitable and it will lead to a feud at Summerslam I’m guessing. And I do think WWE will have Del Rio and Ziggler finally have a proper match with no interfering on PPV soon. These two will fight again and it will be a classic if WWE book it right and if WWE give them like 20+ minutes. I’d love it to happen, and I really we see a match with a legit ending sometime down the road.

 

The Turnbuckle steals Mark Henry’s chance of being WWE Champion for the first time

JOHN CENA AND MARK HENRY: Once again, Superman saves the day. -.-

JOHN CENA AND MARK HENRY: Once again, Superman saves the day. -.-

John Cena defeats another monster heel for the WWE Championship. Yawn. Surely WWE must know their limits on this crap. It’s just getting way too old now. This match absolutely blew and it was down-right degrading to Mark Henry to have his legacy built up by WWE for them to just have them get effectively buried by John Cena. I mean Henry ran into the exposed turnbuckle and tapped out to Cena off the STF. Come on. I wasn’t expecting Henry to win, but at least they could have done in a manner that doesn’t make Henry look weak and also doesn’t make John Cena look like a superhero. I hope they’ve got something good for Henry to build him up again.

 

Randy Orton steals Rob Van Dam’s thunder to become Mr Money In The Bank.

ROB VAN DAM AND DANIEL BRYAN: How's that kick to the face Bryan?

ROB VAN DAM AND DANIEL BRYAN: How’s that kick to the face Bryan?

Probably one of the greatest Money In The Bank ladder matches I’ve ever seen. CM Punk, the returning Rob Van Dam, Daniel Bryan, Sheamus, Randy Orton and Christian put on an incredible display with some cool-looking spots and some hard-hitting action. And that’s not over-stating it, the wrestlers actually got seriously banged up after that match. RVD and Punk both needed stitches and  Sheamus hurt his leg after falling through a ladder. We also saw Rob Van Dam performed a Five-Star-Frog-Splash off the ladder which looked awesome. Randy Orton’s T-Bone Suplex to Punk on the ladder looked sick. CM Punk took some serious shots in and Punk was a crimson mask at the end. And it was all down to his “friend” Paul Heyman, who turned on Punk by hitting him multiple times with a ladder. Punk bled heavily afterwards and finally split of from Heyman for good. This also cements his heel turn and a match with Brock Lesnar at Summerslam. That’ll be one great storyline to check out now Punk and Heyman are enemies. And the match finally met his end. Was it in fact the extremely-over Daniel Bryan who got the briefcase and basically guaranteed himself a WWE Title match? No. Instead it was Randy Orton who got the briefcase, and I don’t mind Orton winning the briefcase as this means he will no doubt turn heel. However, Daniel Bryan misses out and I hope they give him a WWE Title match with Cena at Summerslam anyway because I’d love to see him win the belt. As for Rob Van Dam… welcome back.

Sorry it came so late. But the review is done. I’m Tom Robinson. This is the Armbar Express. And I leave with the Random YouTube Video of the post. It’s Jason Sensation… amazing with WWE impressions. Watch this guy’s Ric Flair impression. It will have you in bits. Later Guys. Don’t forget to follow the @ArmbarExpress at Twitter and like the Facebook page here.