Well, Extreme Rules 2015 is in the books. And I was there live, so clearly that meant it was good, right? RIGHT? Well, some of it was. I’m not sure where my mind’s at with this show to be honest. I really liked everything from the preshow match through the first hour, but then it just kind of died.
The preshow match was changed to Bad News Barrett vs. Neville as Daniel Bryan couldn’t compete. It was a nice, solid match that the crowd was into. It was great to get to see Neville live, and seeing the Red Arrow live was awesome.
The first match was Dean Ambrose vs. Luke Harper in a Chicago Street Fight. This match was great, punctuated by both of them brawling backstage until Harper gets in a car and Ambrose dives in the window and they drive off. They come back later while New Day was being interviewed and Ambrose dove onto all of the New Day as Harper goes back to the ring. Ambrose does a running clothesline off the stage set up. They get to the ring, toss a ton of chairs in, and Harper hits a powerbomb on a chair. Harper tries to hit a dive but Ambrose throws him off, hits Dirty Deeds, and wins his first singles PPV match post Shield. Hurray!
The second match was Dolph Ziggler vs. Sheamus. It was a solid match – most notably Sheamus kept grounding Ziggler whenever he tried to get any offense in. He pretty much dominated most of this match – the only real offense of Dolph’s I can think of was a nice tornado DDT off the steps and some flurries of punches. But, Dolph catches Sheamus in a rollup and gets the WIN SO FUCK YOU SHEAMUS! DOLPH BEAT SHEAMUS HURRAY. Granted Sheamus didn’t honor the stipulation and made Dolph kiss his ass anyway but that’s a good heel maneuver so I’m cool with that.
Next, Uppercats defended the WWE World Tag Team Championship against the New Day in what’s my personal match of the night. You can say what you want about the New Day gimmick but all three men involved in it are good. This is the loudest I’ve heard a crowd for a tag title match in a long time – mainly because they loved the uppercats and hated New Day. I specifically liked how Uppercats both stomped Kofi to the beat of “New, Day Sucks!” It was hilarious. So many great false finishes in here. And you can bitch about New Day winning all you want – New Day has legit heat so you can’t be surprised they have titles.
And then the show kind of dies. John Cena vs. Rusev for the U.S. Title in a Russian Chain match with strap match rules. Rusev bores the crap out of me. Without a good opponent Cena doesn’t have good matches. We’ve seen two matches between them which were mediocre already. And matches with strap match rules like this are terrible. And if my interest in this match wasn’t already nonexistent, if I can tell that the flag hanging above the ring while still rolled up is clearly an American flag (Case in point: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CDj6dVEWIAA7oFr.jpg:large) how am I supposed to believe Rusev has any chance of winning? I don’t know what to rate this match – it’s kind of a dud to me, really, because I knew the victor for certain (I mean, we knew Cena was going to win, but this guaranteed it.) But that’s a special case since I just happened to notice it.
Nikki Bella defended Paige’s Divas Championship against Naomi who wore some light up gear and had new music so that was good in an ok match but both were heels and people were confused and didn’t care. Nikki retains via cheating.
Roman Reigns defeated Big Show in a solid but super predictable Last Man Standing Match. It wasn’t bad, but it was basically everything I expected to come out of it. I expected a Spear through the barricade. Knew it would happen several days ago. I knew he’d have to spear him through the announce table to win. But I forgot he’d have to put the table on top of Show for the win, because every last man standing match seems to end with the face putting some heavy thing on top of the big guy. Like this. Like them putting a crate or something on top of Wyatt last year. And so one. The one thing that was good was Show chokeslamming Reigns over the ropes and through tables. There were too many positive Big Show chants around me during this match.
And finally Seth Rollins defeated Randy Orton in a somewhat average cage match to retain the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. The match wasn’t bad or anything, but it never really hit a second gear. It was kind of slow. The one thing I really wanted to see out of this match was a Phoenix Splash off the top of the cage and we didn’t get it. The only real spots that caught my interest were the suplex while Rollins was hanging from the cage, Orton hitting a Pedigree, and Rollins hitting the RKO before escaping the cage. To top it off, Kane’s presence in this match and chokeslamming them both was completely unneeded.
Overall the first hour of the show was great, but the rest was fairly average. And the best news is Rusev/Cena is continuing at Payback in an I Quit match so HURRAY!!!
Overall Rating: ***
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