There was a good mix of entertaining and questionable moments on this show. Usually that formula just gives us a mediocre show, and that’s what it was. I’m guessing they’re hold themselves back for next week’s go home show.
Opening Segment – The Highlight Reel
Chris Jericho might be the only wrestler on the planet that can sell the death of a plant as a serious angle. I for one believe Jericho was excellent in this segment.
I’m happy to see that the WWE is still using Big Cass on television. That’s definitely a sign that they’re taking him and Enzo seriously. They don’t want them to become irrelevant by not being on TV. Is there a t-shirt that they can give Cass? I just find he looks awkward coming out in nothing but his ring gear, all the time. I notice at times he has flashes of brilliance in his promo skills, but then he starts to sound robotic. I don’t believe that was ever an issue when he was in NXT. Overall, this was very fresh, and enjoyable for the most part.
Dolph Ziggler vs Baron Corbin
There’s only two weeks left until Extreme Rules, and they could have easily waited until then to book this match. Instead, I feel a beat down or distraction angle would have sufficed. Having this contest on the card didn’t help with creating anticipation for their inevitable match at the PPV. It was nice to see Corbin pick up the clean win, but it would have meant so much more if it happened at Extreme Rules.
Fandango vs R-Truth
Say what you want about this feud, it’s been nothing but consistent. The comedic charm has remained intact, and it’s been receiving the appropriate amount of screen time. Also, the feud has been present on every show since it’s started. I’m genuinely excited for the match on Smackdown.
IC Title Backstage Segment
I think this played out very well. For the sake of continuity, I’m glad that they didn’t insert Sami into the IC Title match without earning his way.
Paige vs Charlotte
Did Michael Cole say that Paige and Charlotte came in together? I can’t believe he completely forgot that Paige debuted a full year prior to Flair.
At one point, Paige was considered a top contender, however her presence felt underwhelming. With that being said, she put on a great performance. While it takes two to tango, Paige was definitely quarter backing this contest. I loved everything about the finish. It stayed consistent to the backstage segment with Flair and Shane. In this kind of feud, I feel it’s okay for the champ to lose one match via distraction roll up. Also, it teases that Charlotte can easily drop the belt at Extreme Rules, as she needs Ric to win.
The Miz vs Sami Zayn
The outcome was insanely predictable, but that didn’t matter to me. I still wanted to see Sami pick up the victory because it would be a feel good moment. Also, I thought the two maintained a great pace throughout the whole match.
The more I see the Miz, the more I realize how versatile he’s become. Sami is known for wrestling at a faster pace, and the same can’t usually be said for the Miz. In this match he matched the speed and intensity of Zayn. Based on how well this match was structured, I was pleased that it ended cleanly. I’m sure most others had a huge smile on their face once they saw the outcome of the contest.
Dana Brooke Debut
Dana probably should have stayed in NXT slightly longer, because she had just began to hit her stride (before she was injured). If she’s handled right, I feel she can actually be a strong competitor for the women’s division. Her mic skills are perfect, and she just needs to polish off her in ring skills.
Rusev vs Sin Cara
Wow, Kalisto’s interview with Tom Phillips was horrendous. How are they still giving him that many chances to talk?
The finish to this was atrocious. The whole point of this feud is to make Rusev look like the unbeatable monster that Kalisto must overcome. How am I supposed to think that if Rusev is easily getting beaten by roll up pins?
The Club vs Roman Reigns, & The Usos (Elimination Tag)
If this were another normal six man tag, I might have groaned over the lack of creativity. Instead, the WWE put a small twist on the stipulation, which made it feel fresh. It’s very rare that I could be excited for the same six man tag three shows in a row. However, that’s a testament to how great the chemistry is between these competitors.
The elimination factor actually tamed the action. Since everything has to happen in the ring, we didn’t get as many brawls. For the most part, I found this to be an entertaining match. Did the ref stop counting when Roman and AJ were fighting by the announce desk? What was the difference if the match ended in a count out instead of a DQ? That was such a glaring flaw.
Similar to the previous matches, the post match brawl was awesome. More than anything else, I loved the standoff between Reigns and Styles. Apart from it being intense, it added another layer to AJ. While he wants to fit in with his friends, deep down he knows he can’t act like them.
Zack Ryder vs Kevin Owens
The two worked a decent match, but I didn’t really care for it. There was no way KO was going to lose, as that would be a terrible booking decision.
The New Day vs The Dudley Boyz
Week after week, the New Day always makes me laugh. Their promo here was hilarious.
During the Dudleys babyface run, we hardly saw them talk trash while wrestling. Bubba especially was much more quiet. Now that roles have switched, I find the in ring trash talk to be much more entertaining. The match didn’t rely on jokes, as the in ring action was highly entertaining. The run in from the Vaudevillians was well done. It was simple, and it gives the New Day something to be angry about.
Big Cass vs Chris Jericho
Believe it or not, I was genuinely excited to see Big Cass wrestle Jericho. I knew we’d see Ambrose appear eventually, but not as quick as he did. Based on how things played, this should have been swapped with the elimination tag. It wasn’t a terrible segment, it was just a weird way to conclude a show. Imagine if last week’s edition of Raw ended the Jericho breaking a potted plant over Ambrose’s head? That would have left the show on such a flat note.
Similar to last week’s episode, there wasn’t a whole lot of filler. Every segment was given context and had some sort of impact. With that being said, this show still didn’t match the quality of last week’s. There were some odd booking choices that stood out, and some strange placement. The low point of the show was Rusev vs Sin Cara, while the high point was Zayn vs the Miz. Overall, I give this episode a 5.5/10.