We had some real ups and downs tonight on Extreme Rules, with some really good matches and some really bland, weird matches. The main event was simply stellar. It was engrossing, the finish was unexpected, and the more I think about it, the more I like it. Let’s talk about each segment, and if you already watched the show, you know which segments were the bad ones. Not that they were really shocking or anything–I suppose I just hoped they would be better (I’m an optimist, even with crappy-sounding matches).
Dean Ambrose VS. The Miz (Intercontinental Title)
I am glad that The Miz walked away as champ from this match, and I pretty much knew that it was going to happen. The stipulation was just too telling. The Miz did his usual sneaky stuff, trying to get Dean disqualified (which would cause him to lose the title) by having Maryse slap him. Dean and Miz played their characters to the stipulation well–Dean constantly trying to keep himself from getting DQ’d and Miz trying everything to make that happen. There were some decent spots, and in the end, Miz used a distraction to get the Skull-Crushing Finale on Dean and won the championship.
xI didn’t think that this match was going to be good, but it was pretty entertaining, and I hope that they get away from this rivalry soon because it’s getting pretty tired. I want to see them go and do their own things with new characters, and I’m hoping that this is the beginning of something way better.
The Miz Defeats Dean Ambrose (Pin)
Sasha Banks and Rich Swann VS Noam Dar and Alicia Foxxxxxxxxxx
Banks and Swann work well together. They clearly have chemistry; I’m certainly not going to deny that. This match, however, was an absolute bore to watch. There wasn’t a single memorable spot, and absolutely nothing stuck out to me. For being a match on the main card (not the pre-show) at Extreme Rules, this was anything but extreme. Maybe keep the Swann/Banks thing going as on-screen buddies, but I don’t know if I want to see them wrestle together again. They work by themselves much better.
Banks/Swann Defeat Dar/Foxxxxxxxx
Elias Samson came out and sang a little ditty about how scummy Baltimore is, and was met by an overwhelming wave of boos. I might add that the booing started before he started mocking them. I’m not really sure what to feel about the guy yet. It was cool watching him beat up a jobber last week, but why was he even on the main card tonight? I feel like the time could have gone to the Bayley/Bliss match, and speaking of that….
Bayley VS. Alexa Bliss (RAW Women’s Championship) Kendo Stick On A Pole Match
Ugh. Let’s just put Bayley into the pile of failed NXT call-ups.
I mean, it’s not totally her fault, she didn’t write that awful segment last Monday, and she didn’t write this match. Bayley got a few hits in on Alexa Bliss, and had the kendo stick in her hand, ready to give Alexa a beat-down with it. It was going to be awesome, we were going to see a badass Bayley re-enact all those awesome matches that she saw growing up. Nope.
Alexa pretty much just took it from her and beat the piss out of her like a tranquilized Piñata. The match was really short, and it just made me sad. I didn’t feel good about this match. I didn’t exactly care if she won, I just wanted to see Bayley go ballistic with that kendo stick and show everyone she’s a badass like she should be. Bad match, wasted potential, and I’ve no idea where to put Bayley now. Moving on.
Alexa Bliss Defeats Bayley (Pin)
The Hardy Boyz VS. Cesaro and Sheamus (Tag Team Championship) Cage Match
This was a good match, especially on the heels of the previous match. We needed this. These teams still don’t have the best chemistry, and I don’t think they’re the best rivalry, but they did a good job, regardless. There were some good spots, like Jeff jumping off the top of the cage (of course that was going to happen). Sheamus kicking the cage door in Jeff’s face was a good “Ohhh! Bet that hurt!” spot, and Sheamus is already great at doing those kinds of spots.
Cesaro and Sheamus walked away with the win and the belts, which I think is fine because the Hardys really haven’t had a story so far. They just kind of came back, everyone knew who they were, and they’ve relied on that since then. I think that it’s time to get some promos going with the Boyz, though I don’t know if it’s time for the “Broken” storyline yet. I want to see it as much as the next guy, but maybe we should see a little bit of normal Matt and Jeff Hardy before we break them? No matter what, I’m happy with how this match went.
Cesaro and Sheamus Defeat The Hardy Boyz (Escaped the cage first)
Neville VS. Austin Aries (Cruiserweight Championship) Submission Match
I don’t really know if I agree with how the match ended, only because I want to see AA as champ and get some other people in on the title picture. It’s pretty much just been these two for the last two or three months, and even though I love them, I want to see some other talent.
That aside, this was a great match. These guys put on a damn good show with some near-falls and Neville tapping outside the ring (so it didn’t count). There were plenty of good spots, but that Red Arrow knee-first into the ribs of Austin Aries looked really damn painful. I don’t know if it was supposed to go like that, but going from that to the Rings of Saturn was awesome, and Neville looked like an absolute beast because of it. If this match benefits both wrestlers in the long run, then I’ll be happy. I hope we get some other people looking at that title soon!
Neville Defeats Austin Aries (Rings of Saturn Submission)
Finn Balor | Samoa Joe | Roman Reigns | Seth Rollins | Bray Wyatt (Fatal Five-Way)
This was an A+ match for sure.
These guys all did a fantastic job at tearing each other apart. The best part of the match was Finn and Joe getting speared by Reigns into the barricade, then having Seth immediately Frog Splash Wyatt on the announcer’s table. Everybody had laid each other out, half of them seemed to be bleeding out of the face a little bit, and it was just awesome. There were some good uses of chairs and the stairs, temporary alliances–just an amazing effort from everyone.
The result of the match surprised me quite a bit, but now that I’m thinking about it, I like it! I didn’t think Joe was going to come out of this the winner (I wanted Finn to win). However, I want to see Joe and Lesnar tear each other apart, Lesnar to win, and Finn to take him on at SummerSlam. He won the title last year at SummerSlam (then subsequently relinquished it) and should win it back (as the Demon King). It’s not that I don’t want to see Joe as champ, I just think that that would be a much better storyline, and so many people want to see Finn become champ again. This was definitely a match that was worth watching the rest of the PPV for!
Samoa Joe Defeats Finn Balor (Coquina Clutch Submission)
We’ll see what happens on RAW. I’m genuinely curious to see where all of these stories are going to go now! No more weird Bayley segments, though. Please.
Not even Bliss could save that terrible segment.
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