Chris Jericho defeats Fandango: Solid opener. I wasn’t blown away by anything in the match, but it was a decent way to hype the crowd for the start of the show. I’m glad Jericho got the nod in this one; I expect their third contest at Payback to be Fandango’s defining moment.
Dean Ambrose defeats Kofi Kingston to win the US Title: I honestly didn’t expect Kofi to drop the title this soon, but Dean Ambrose is more than ready to carry a midcard title. I honestly see Dean Ambrose participating in main event feuds by the end of this year and being a strong candidate to win a money in the bank briefcase. Good match from both competitors, but it didn’t go long enough to be anything memorable.
Sheamus defeats Mark Henry in the strap match: I feel like Sheamus’ corners should’ve been reset when Henry caught him, but the finish was still pretty good to the match. I wanted to see more whipping, but obviously these two could only destroy each other so much with that strap. Good match, and good feud. I was surprised Henry didn’t get the win, but I expect him to challenge John Cena for the WWE Title before the year is over regardless. Henry’s character is the most entertaining it’s ever been, and WWE would be foolish if they didn’t take advantage of it.
Alberto Del Rio defeats Jack Swagger after a false towel throw in and a restart: Good match from these guys, but I hate false finishes. I didn’t expect Swagger to win the match, and I don’t expect Swagger to do anything significant from here on out in terms of winning any gold. Del Rio and Ziggler should deliver us a solid contest whenever that match takes place.
The Shield defeats Team Hell No to win the Tag Team Championship: This was easily the best match on the card tonight. I loved this match!!! There isn’t much more to say; WWE’s booking of the Shield has been fantastic. The speed alone of Rollins and Reigns in this one is what made them so dominant at stopping three counts and executing AMAZING double team traps to pick up the win. This was just awesome wrestling, and props to Kane and Dbry for working such a good match with them. I see Team Hell No splitting up once they lose their rematch.
Randy Orton defeats the Big Show after the punt to the head: Two vets put on a solid match and added to the quality of the show. Good work from both men. I see Big Show having a feud with someone else now and I see Orton eventually working his way back into the World Title scene(where he belongs) as heel now that he’s brought back the punt to the skull. I’m a bit surprised that WWE didn’t book Orton and Sheamus to face Henry and Show in a tag team match tonight instead of two singles matches.
John Cena and Ryback wrestle to a no-contest when Ryback drives Cena through the entryway and out of sight. Both men are helped away from the scene: Good brawling and good storytelling. I hate no contest finishes; WWE was worried about either man looking weak, and that to me is just garbage. There needs to be a winner and a loser. Isn’t that how wrestling works? They book their midcard champions to lose non-title matches ALL THE TIME, but letting a number one contender lose clean runs the risk of making him look weak? IT MAKES NO DAMN SENSE! Anyway, Cena and Ryback delivered a decent match(it wasn’t unforgettable or amazing), and I hope they get the chance to give us a sequel with a clean outcome in the future.
Brock Lesnar defeats Triple H with help from Paul Heyman: Brock wins! It would’ve been foolish for Hunter to go over here, so props to WWE for making that go the right way. This wasn’t anything epic, but it was definitely an aggressive style cage match that I like to see with two bigger guys. Good way to cap off the night.
So we had good to great wrestling all night with a false finish in one match and a no-contest in another. How do I rank this? I’d give it a 7 or 8 out of 10, depending on my mood. For that, I’ll call it 7.5 out of 10. It wasn’t the greatest pay per view I’ve ever watched, but I have no major complaints about it either. I’m mostly pleased with the performance and booking of the Shield. It’s nice to see the young talent shining with vets leading the charge in the main event of the show. I’ll be back with the Raw analysis early Tuesday. Until next time, you’ve been ThunderStruck!
facebook.com/thunderstruck11 – add me