WWE

WWE Night of Champions 2014 Review

Goldust and Stardust defeated The Usos to win the WWE Tag Team Championships

This was a great match because they just went out there and told a story. There was good back-and-forth action, good pacing, and a good finish. Whoever was the agent for this match deserves a raise. In the end, Stardust blocked a splash and scored the victory with a roll-up pin.

Rating: ****

Sheamus defeated Cesaro to retain the WWE United States Championship

This was probably the best match I’ve ever seen Sheamus have. He and Cesaro worked very well together. As one would expect with these two in the ring, the match was very physical. The match did fizzle out at the end, with Sheamus winning with a Brogue Kick out of nowhere. This was a good match and would have been even better were it not for the finish.

Rating: ***¾

The Miz defeated Dolph Ziggler to win the WWE Intercontinental Championship

This was a solid match hurt by the first of multiple boneheaded finishes on the show. Dolph was Dolph; the best worker in the company since Daniel Bryan got hurt. Miz wasn’t bad himself. I feel terrible for Damien Sandow. As if all the goofy gimmicks weren’t enough, as if having to dress like Miz wasn’t enough, at Night of Champions, he had to sell for Florida Georgia Line while dressed as The Miz. The finish made no sense, as Sandow caused a distraction and Dolph went out of his way to kick him, allowing Miz to pin him with a roll-up, while grabbing the tights. I have no idea why Ziggler would go out of his way to prevent Sandow from interfering, since if Sandow were to interfere, Dolph would retain the title. Good match, awful finish.

Rating: ***¼

Seth Rollins defeated Roman Reigns by forfeit.

Reigns was in the hospital after hernia surgery, but Rollins wanted to be called the winner and have his hand raised anyway.

Rating: 0

Rusev defeated Mark Henry by submission

I like Mark Henry. I really do. But this match was so bad and so slow, I can not find any way at all to defend it. These two worked at a snail’s pace and completely killed the crowd. Henry was driven into the ring post early in the match, so the announcers got over about how he was hurt and didn’t have all his strength. I have no clue why. If you’re trying to get Rusev over, wouldn’t one think that you would want to have him beat Mark Henry at his best? So, the logic was bad, the action was worse, and I really hope they don’t do this again on the next pay-per-view. Rusev made Henry tap to the Accolade.

Rating: -****¼

Randy Orton defeated Chris Jericho

Decent match that the crowd wasn’t into. I don’t know if they didn’t care because they were still dead from the Rusev-Henry match or if Orton killed the crowd all over again. In any case, they didn’t care and neither did I. Orton won in the most obvious finish ever, hitting Jericho with the RKO after Jericho jumped off the top rope.

Rating: **¾

AJ Lee defeated Paige and Nikki Bella in a Triple Threat match to win the WWE Divas Championship

I have no idea why Nikki Bella was in this match. She didn’t win the title and Brie didn’t cost her the match, setting up a feud for the next month, and while Nikki (acting skills aside) was better than I expected her to be, this match would have been miles better without her in it. AJ made Paige submit to the Black Widow to win the title.

Rating: *¾

John Cena defeated Brock Lesnar by disqualification in a match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship

This match was almost brilliant. It asn’t going to be the greatest-worked match in history, the things made sense, and the psychology was great. Cena got in a lot more offense this time around, but Lesnar had an answer for everything Cena did. Whoever beats Brock Lesnar for the title is really going to have to earn it. Cena hit four AA’s and applied the STF four times. Cena was going for the pin after the fourth AA, at which point Seth Rollins came in, hit Cena with the Money in the Bank briefcase, and got Lesnar DQ’d, in what was the most brainless finish to a match I’ve seen in a long time, and that’s saying a lot. There was only one thing that you absolutely couldn’t do because it would make no sense whatsoever, short-term or long-term, and that’s what they did. Someone’s going to have to explain to me why Seth Rollins, who’s aligned with The Authority would try to cash in the Money in the Bank on Brock Lesnar, who The Authority brought in to win the title, with no repercussions from Triple H or Stephanie. This match was well on its way to being at least a four-star match, so this rating ought to tell how bad the finish was.

Rating: -***¼

This show started out really well, and then completely fell apart. Bad booking hurt more than one match.

Show rating: *¼

Follow me on Twitter @KSchroeder2325.

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SummerSlam 2014 Review

Dolph Ziggler defeated The Miz to win the WWE Intercontinental Championship

The crowd was really hot for this match. Even though he’s been booked terribly as of late, Ziggler is still one of, if not the most, over guys on the roster. The crowd chanted “You can’t wrestle” at Miz and they’re right, he can’t wrestle. But Ziggler sure can. Dolph carried the match, which was pretty good up until the finishing sequence. I though Ziggler got up too soon after breaking the Figure-4 and didn’t sell the leg hurting that well. Also, the Zig Zag didn’t look that great, as it looked like Dolph and Miz weren’t on the same page when doing the move. Still, a good opening match.

Rating: ***½

Paige defeated AJ Lee to win the WWE Divas Championship

Early on, the match didn’t really flow well, but the match got much better as it went on. I’m really looking forward to seeing more from these two, as their last couple of matches have been some of the better divas matches in recent history. This one had some really good spots, such as AJ taking out Paige from the top rope to the outside. The finish was a good one, with Paige countering the Black Widow into the RamPaige for the win.

Rating: **¾

Rusev defeated Jack Swagger in a Flag Match

First of all, this wasn’t like any other flag match I’ve seen. It was just a regular match, with the flag of the winner’s country being displayed after the match. Rusev attacked Swagger before the bell and Swagger was able to catch him in the Patriot Lock. After breaking the hold, Rusev sold that his ankle was hurt, because it makes perfect sense for the babyface to injure the heel before the match actually begins. Rusev then forgot to sell the ankle injury multiple times throughout the match, and Swagger answered by doing the Swagger bomb even though his ribs were supposed to be injured. Nothing in this match made any sense and nobody cared about it. The highlight of the stupidity in this match came when Rusev did a jumping, spinning kick, a rather impressive move for someone his size, and Stupid Michael Cole no-sold it, saying it just glanced Swagger. Rusev finally won by putting Swagger in The Accolade, causing Swagger to pass out. This match was way too long and somehow worse than I expected.

Rating: -***

Seth Rollins defeated Dean Ambrose in a Lumberjack Match

This match showed that Dean Ambrose is the best all-around talent in the world right now. There were a lot of great spots in this match, like Ambrose and Rollins fighting the lumberjacks, fighting on the outside, Ambrose jumping from the announce table over the barricade to attack Rollins, and Ambrose’s dive from the top rope to the outside. This match would have been better were it not for the finish. Things broke down too much at the end with Kane coming out and the lumberjacks fighting Kane as well as Ambrose and Rollins. Finally, Rollins hit Ambrose with the briefcase and picked up the win.

Rating: ****

Bray Wyatt defeated Chris Jericho

Jericho cam out in a new Lite-Brite jacket. This match was much better than their first match, as it seemed to flow a lot better. There was nothing really spectacular about this match, but it was solid throughout and they didn’t try to do too much.

Rating: ***¾

Stephanie McMahon defeated Brie Bella

This match was way too long considering Stephanie and Brie had about six moves between them. I’ll give Stephanie credit for at least doing her couple of moves well, though. I don’t dislike Brie Bella. She’s usually better than she was at SummerSlam and she’s miles better than he sister, but she just didn’t do it for me in this one. She ran the ropes only slightly better than Jenna Morasca. The two of them repeated spots more than once. In the end, Triple H came out, Brie Bella took him out, which really doesn’t say much for Triple H, and ultimately Nikki turned on Brie to help Stephanie win, as it makes “Total” sense (See what I did there?) that the company’s top face would be dating one of the top heel divas.

Rating: -***½

Roman Reigns defeated Randy Orton

This match was slow, with too many rest holds. Orton and Reigns never seemed to really be on the same page in this one. It wasn’t a bad match, but I really wanted more out of this one. In the end, Reigns countered a punt and hit Orton with the Spear.

Rating: **½

Brock Lesnar conquered John Cena to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship

Look, if you’re grading this match based on the actual work, it was pretty bad. However, they did exactly what they needed to do in this one. The last time we saw Brock Lesnar, he conquered The Undertaker’s undefeated streak at WrestleMania. They needed to build on that and make Lesnar look unstoppable and that’s what they did. Lesnar hit Cena with 16 German suplexes and beat him within an inch of his life, before finally hitting the F5 for the win. (Side note: I’m going to be really disappointed if on Raw tonight, we don’t get a promo from Paul Heyman where he says that Lesnar actually has a lot more in his arsenal than what we saw last night, and then rattles off a list of 1,o05 moves where every other move is a German Suplex.)

Rating: ****

Overall, this was WWE’s best show in a long time. Out of the eight matches, four were good all-around, one more was great except for the finish, one more was average, and only two were really bad. Pretty much everyone we needed to deliver did, and they’ve set themselves up for some really interesting television going forward. Whether or not they’ll be able to follow up on this well remains to be seen, but at the very least, I think they sold some Network subscriptions last night.

Show rating: ***¾

Follow me on Twitter @KSchroeder2325.

 

WWE Battleground 2014 Review

The Usos defeated Luke Harper and Erick Rowan in a 2 out of 3 falls match to retain the WWE Tag Team Championship

The pacing of this match was really good. Too often, in a two-out-of-three falls match, either the first two or final two falls will happen too quickly. Harper and Rowan took the first fall and the Usos took the second with a roll-up. There was a lot of action, but it seemed like they were repeating a lot of the same stuff. The Usos took the third fall with a double splash.

Match rating: **¾

AJ Lee defeated Paige to retain the WWE Divas Championship

The only time the crowd made any noise early in this match was when they were chanting “CM Punk.”  The commentators seemed equally disinterested, as after Cole pointed out that AJ was the longest-reigning Divas champion ever, JBL mentioned that The Fabulous Moolah had a long reign with the Women’s Championship. This led to Moe, Larry, and Curly talking about how those are two different titles and making old jokes.

As the match went on, the crowd kind of got into it. This was actually one of the better divas matches in a long time, although there were a few blown spots. AJ won with the Shining Wizard, one of Punk’s old moves.

Match rating: **¼

Rusev defeated Jack Swagger via count-out

Lana cut a promo before the match that took so long, I had a birthday while she was talking. I don’t know what I was expecting from this match, but it was still disappointing. There were no real botches, although most of the match was rest holds, so it’s kind of hard to botch those. Swagger became the first person to realize “Hey, Rusev’s not wearing shoes,” and stomp on his foot. Rusev won by count-out after he reversed the Patriot Lock outside the ring and sent Swagger into the ring post.

Match rating: -*½

Seth Rollins defeated Dean Ambrose via forfeit

Rollins comes out for the match, but Ambrose had been kicked out of the building, so the match never really happened. Still better than most divas matches.

Match rating: 0, because the match didn’t actually happen

Chris Jericho defeated Bray Wyatt

From the beginning, the flow of this match just seemed off. It was well-worked, but it wasn’t planned out well.

This match really showed just how bad Michael Cole is. More than once he was at a loss for words or just plain lost.

Jericho won with a Codebreaker out of nowhere.

Match rating: **½

The Miz won a Battle Royal for the Intercontinental Championship

This was your typical battle royal. A few cool spots, mostly courtesy of Kofi Kingston and Dolph Ziggler, but other than that, nothing special.

The Miz was knocked out of the ring through the middle rope and laid outside the ring until only Ziggler was left. Miz then came back in, eliminated Dolph and won. There is no way anyone could have not seen this coming. What was really stupid was that Miz left the ring through the bottom rope earlier in the match. Also, when it was down to Sheamus and Dolph in the ring, Sheamus pointed to himself, Dolph, and the Intercontinental Championship belt. Miz was laying right next to the belt. I get that this is scripted and that there’s supposed to be a suspension of disbelief, but come on. How am I supposed to believe that neither guy realized the Miz hadn’t actually been eliminated when they looked directly at him?

Match rating: *¼

John Cena retained the WWE World Heavyweight Championship in a Fatal 4-Way match against Roman Reigns, Randy Orton, and Kane

There was absolutely nothing special about this match other than Roman Reigns. Kane finally broke ties with Orton. I don’t know what this means as far as his standing with The Authority is concerned, and frankly, I don’t care. Earlier in the night, they showed Rollins leaving the building. Not sure why he’d want to leave before the title match, or why Triple H would want him to. So much for Plan B.

I’ve said before that Cena’s a better worker than he gets credit for. He’s good, not great. At Battleground, he wasn’t even good. He was downright bad. Thinking back about the match, I counted the different moves I saw him do and got to seven. And the bulldog he did looked like crap, which is completely inexcusable for someone with as much experience and as limited of a move set as he has.

In the end, Cena AA’d Orton onto Kane and pinned Kane to retain the title.

Match rating: ½

 

This show should’ve been much better than it was. The card looked great, and yet, the show still sucked. Well done, guys. One would think that since this is the last pay-per-view before the first wave of WWE Network subscriptions is up, if you’re WWE, you’d want to make sure this show is good to make those people want to renew.

After tonight, everyone on the creative team and whoever was the agent for the Jericho-Wyatt match need to lose their jobs. It’s a serious problem when the divas match is one of the better matches on the show. The only thing making me not totally dread having to sit through three hours of Raw on Monday night after wasting three hours watching this abomination on Sunday is the fact that Cena won’t be on Raw, which actually, makes it incredibly stupid that he just walked out of there with the belts. I can understand wanting to keep the belts on Cena, but at least have someone beat him down after the match so you have a reason as to why the champion isn’t on your flagship program. Then, of course, you would have needed Rollins there to at least tease cashing in the Money in the Bank. But like I said earlier, he had left the building (and then got attacked by Dean Ambrose in the parking lot), so there goes Plan B. And Heyman and his Plan C were nowhere to be found, and Triple H didn’t come out during or after the main event, so contrary to what Jerry Lawler tried to tell us about how upset Triple H must be, he must not have been too concerned about this match if his Plans B and C weren’t there and he didn’t try to stop Kane and Orton from fighting each other.

Overall, nothing special as far as the matches go, too many of the wrong people won, the logic was terrible all night, and not only was the PPV not the payoff to anything, but it also didn’t even really advance anything.

Show rating: -***½

Follow me on Twitter @KSchroeder2325.

Money in the Bank (2014) Review

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Uso’s vs Harper and Rowan

Uso’s out first and Harper and Rowan out with new music.

This match has the potential to be the best match on this card.  A lot of great back and forth offense by both teams.  Jey Uso hits a great spot running off the barricade.  Harper hits a great flip from the outside of the ropes.  A few more great over the top rope spots by the Uso’s and some suicide dives by Luke Harper.  Finishing sequence was great and the Uso’s come out on as the victors in the opening match of the night.

Naomi vs Paige

Thanks to Kevin I have to watch a Diva’s match, but I’ll eat my words cuz in the early going this match is pretty good.  Naomi hit a great spot over the top rope.  A lot of reversals for both women in a slow paced match.  After a few near falls Paige hits a modified DDT and gets the pinfall victory.

Adam Rose vs Paul Revere

OHHHHHHHHHOHHHHHH Adam Rose is out with the Exotic Express after Sandow cuts his normal cheap heat promo in Boston dressed as Paul Revere.  Its pretty sad that John Cena ruined Sandow’s career after the first unsuccessful “unannounced” MITB cash-in.  Match is boring but the crowd loves Adam Rose’s theme as they keep themselves entertained.  Sandow misses with a moonsault and Rose wins after hitting the Party Foul.  Exotic Express celebrates and Michael Cole makes a “Last Ride” joke.

Editor’s note: Sandow was dressed as Paul Revere and still didn’t have the worst gimmick in this match.

MITB Contract Match: Swagger, Kofi, Ziggler, Rollins, Ambrose, RVD

Barret is announced as injured (had him picked to win and I’m sure he was going to because Triple H has been spouting his slogan for weeks).  Ambrose comes out and instantly attacks Rollins.  Kofi starts off on fire and hits a great Boom Drop spot and a Ladder spot.  More and more great spots by all the competitors.

Guess what? SPOTS!!!!!!!!

Ambrose mid-match “injures his shoulder” and is escorted to the back by medical personnel. The match continues with a bunch of action and as Seth Rollins ascends the ladder after a barrage of chair shots to Seth Rollins, Kane comes out and chokeslams the Lunatic Fringe and Seth Rollins becomes Mr. Money in the Bank.

Goldust and Stardust vs Rybaxel

STARDUST IS HERE BREH!  They gave them about 15 minutes and we got a great tag team match from both teams.  “Dust to Dust” comes out victorious.

Rusev vs Big E

RUSEV UDREA, RUSEV MACHKA.  After a somewhat long match that was uninteresting Rusev wins with “The Accolade”

Layla vs Summer Rae

I wasn’t interested.  Layla won.

Editor’s note: This is quite possibly the greatest review of a match I’ve ever seen. And Qwan wasn’t the only one that didn’t care about this match. Nobody cared. The only time the crowd made any noise was when they were chanting “CM Punk.”

MITB Championship Match: Shaemus, Bray Wyatt, Alberto Del Rio, John Cena, Randy Orton, Cesaro, Roman Reigns, Kane.

Bedlam begins as the match starts. A “We want Cena, Cena Sucks” chant starts to break out which normally happens.  In a pretty good match with some great spots, everybody shines.  In the end old glory wins his 15th title in his hometown of Boston.

Follow Qwan on Twitter @Day_Qwan.