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Chairshot Week In Review: WWE July 29 – August 4, 2018

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Chairshot WWE Week In Review

The State of WWE:  July 29-August 4, 2018

It is Week 3 of the build for SummerSlam and once again, WWE realizes that the problem with booking so many title matches so far in advance is trying to keep the momentum going. So let’s see how WWE did this week.

RAW

WWE Universal Championship: Roman Reigns may be primed and ready to take on Brock Lesnar, but Lesnar doesn’t seem to think he has any reason to fear Reigns or actually hype his match. This attitude leads to trouble for Lesnar’s long time advocate, Paul Heyman, who finds his job in WWE jeopardized by Lesnar’s apathy.

The tensions between Angle and Corbin continued to grow as Corbin, with the backing of Stephanie McMahon, undermines Angle’s authority and credibility at every turn, but learns the downside of being a stooge to the McMahons: You’re the first to get your ass kicked if you cross the top babyface. Corbin learned that lesson the hard way when he and Angle threw Reigns out of the building for no good reason, with the threat that he’d lose his title shot if he didn’t comply. Reigns called out Angle’s seeming impotence before knocking Corbin flat on his ass.

Later in the evening, Lesnar would finally come to the ring, but seems to be buying into his own hype and turns on Heyman and assaulting Angle. It seems that Lesnar is getting out of control, but what Angle and WWE can and will do is another matter.

WWE Intercontinental Championship: Ziggler wasn’t in action tonight, but Seth Rollins was against Drew McIntyre. Rollins managed to pick up a win by DQ after Ziggler attacked him to stop Rollins from pinning McIntrye again. A fight broke out, but Rollins still got a win over McIntrye and was left standing over Ziggler.

Later on, Renee was interviewing Rollins when Ziggler and McIntyre got the jump on Rollins, but the match is still on for SummerSlam, boys. 

RAW Women’s Championship: Alexa Bliss didn’t have a match tonight, but there was plenty of action when she seconded Alicia Fox against Natalya Neidhart, who just happened to be seconded by the returning Ronda Rousey.

Fox picked up the win, with some help from Alexa Bliss, but Fox found herself on the bad side of Ronda Rousey and paid for it. Fox made the situation worse by attacking Rousey from behind, which I wouldn’t do if I was being backed up by the US Army, Seal Team Six, and the Winchester brothers from ‘Supernatural’.

However, Karma might be ready to get a hold of Fox and Bliss, because Angle announced that Ronda Rousey will have her first match on RAW against Alicia Fox NEXT WEEK.

RAW Tag Team Championship: Well, we learned one thing this week: Bo Dallas never won a spelling bee, considering that he seems to think that there is a ‘B’ in ‘dream’. ANYWAY, B Team cut a promo, only to be interrupted by the Deleters of Worlds, who aren’t happy about being beaten by Axel and Dallas. The Revival also threw their hats into the ring, saying that they should be given a title shot since DoW lost their rematch, and due to Revival beating Lashley and Reigns, which doesn’t mean jack squat in the tag division. A fight breaks out between Revival and DoW, leaving DoW standing tall.

A match was quickly made between Deleters of Worlds and The Revival that ended with the Revival standing tall and with an actual claim to be in the tag title picture.

Sasha vs Bayley: Team BossHugger were in action against Sarah Logan and Liv Morgan of the Riott Squad. BossHugger would come out on top, but it still feels like something’s brewing.

Kevin Owens vs Braun Strowman: Owens was sucking up to Corbin during the show and helping undermine Angle’s authority on RAW, but Corbin wasn’t playing games tonight.

Strowman was in action tonight against Jinder Mahal, however, due to outside shenanigans by Kevin Owens, who took off with the Money in the Bank briefcase, Strowman was counted out, giving Mahal the victory. Strowman was, understandably, NOT happy about this and chased Mahal out of the ring.

Finn Balor: Balor came out on the losing end of a very good match against Baron Corbin on RAW and suffered a further beatdown after the match. It’s still not clear what Balor’s story is going to be heading into SummerSlam and my original theory just took a sharp turn.

Angle vs Corbin: This came to me after comments by Roman Reigns and the assault on Angle by Brock Lesnar at the end of RAW. Corbin has been a thorn in Angle’s flesh as Stephanie’s stooge, undermining his authority and credibility, so I can almost see a match between Angle and Corbin at SummerSlam over who is going to be the final authority on RAW, Angle or Corbin.

Bobby Lashley vs Elias: Bob again interrupted Elias, but apparently he wanted to join him in a song, which turned out to be Rockin’ Robin (oh, boy).  Elias was so angry that he attacked Lashley, who quickly turned the tables and I think we’ve got Elias vs Lashley for SummerSlam

Authors of Pain vs Titus Worldwide: Apollo Crews was in action tonight against Akam (no, I’m not sure which one that is). They showed a taped interview that went a little better than the one last week, if you ignore all the author/writing puns. Crews picked up a surprising win, but this isn’t going to go over well.

Bobby Roode vs Mojo Rawley: Rawley’s war against the locker room continues for some reason and he ended up picking a fight with Roode, who has done more in his wrestling career than Rawley could ever hope to do. A fight broke out, but was quickly broken up, but this seems to be another build for SummerSlam.

SmackDown Live

WWE Championship: Samoa Joe cut a promo on Styles, citing their long history, and even said that he respected Styles and what he’s done on SmackDown, even though Styles seems to have put being champion before everything, including being a father. He vows to tear down the House that Styles built and becoming WWE Champion.

WWE United States Championship: Jeff Hardy cut a surreal promo about the US Title, Nakamura, and Orton. Hardy said that as important as the US title is, beating the hell out of Orton was more important. Orton responded to the challenge, only for Nakamura to attack Hardy from behind. So, I’m guessing that this is going to be a Triple Threat at SummerSlam.

Orton continued to assault Hardy after Nakamura left, wiping off his facepaint and generally being a psychotic creep.

Update: Per General Manager Paige, Shinsuka Nakamura WILL defend the United States Title at SummerSlam against Jeff Hardy. No word yet on Orton’s place in this match, but Jeff Hardy will get another shot at regaining the US Title.

Smackdown Women’s Championship: Carmella and Becky kicked off SmackDown tonight and Carmella gave what seemed like a heartfelt promo, until Ellsworth’s music hit and she attacked Becky from behind. The sneak attack brought Charlotte Flair, who has been out due to injury, to her friend’s aid.

Carmella whined to Paige, who was not having it. So, she made a match between Charlotte and Carmella, adding that if Charlotte won, the Women’s Match at SummerSlam would become a Triple Threat.

During an interview segment with Renee, Charlotte was happy and confident and was determined to reclaim her throne.

When Becky was asked about Charlotte potentially being added, she didn’t seem very happy about the idea but said that she wouldn’t root against her best friend.

Charlotte vs Carmella was the main event, but before the match, Carmella was asked about the whole situation and mocked Charlotte and Becky’s friendship, pointing out that Becky didn’t really seem to be rooting for her ‘best friend.’

To no one’s shock, this was a great match, nor was the outcome really a surprise: Charlotte won with the Figure Eight, thereby earning herself a shot at SummerSlam and stealing the momentum Becky had earned for herself. It’s safe to say Becky isn’t happy about this, but time will tell what the full fallout of this match is going to be for the Thelma and Louise of Wrestling.

SmackDown Tag Team Championship: Tuesday was Week 2 of the Tag Tournament, the Uso faced the Bar. Unsurprisingly, it was a great match. The Bar managed the win, but the Usos have a legit reason to be ticked since they had the match won on several occasions. So, next week will be The Bar vs New Day.

Daniel Bryan vs The Miz: The war of words between Daniel Bryan and Miz continued this week, with both men trading barbs about each other’s careers. Miz seems to have won this round with a withering put down of Bryan’s career and accomplishments, despite the fact that Bryan was the talk of sports in 2014-15 due to the Yes! Movement, WrestleMania 30, and his forced retirement.

Later in the week, Daniel Bryan challenged Miz to a match at SummerSlam, which Miz refused, but I have a feeling that General Manager Paige will have something to say about it come Tuesday.

Lana vs Zelina Vega: After last week’s catfight, Lana and Zelina were put into a match by Paige. The match wasn’t the total, flaming, trainwreck I was expecting, Vega outclassed Lana at every step, though Lana managed to hang with her. English tried to even the odds for Lana, when Almas tried to interfere, but ended up costing her instead. Despite this, Lana blasted Rusev backstage for not coming to her aid and saying that English had been there for her.

205 Live

Cruiserweight Championship: So, last week, Drew Gulak won the opportunity to face Cedric Alexander at SummerSlam, in an amazing match. This week, the opponents had a tense contract signing. Drew tried to cut a promo before signing, but Cedric basically told him to shut up and sign the contract. Drew said that he simply wanted to congratulate Cedric on being undefeated in 2018, one ONE little asterisk: He hasn’t done anything since. Cedric scoffs at this, pointing out that he’s defended his title all over the world, against all comers. Gulak says that while he’s not knocking Cedric’s performance, he points out that when the title wasn’t on the line, Cedric wasn’t around, while guys like Gulak were building the brand, ignoring the fact that Cedric had been helping build the brand as well, before and after he became champion.

Cedric’s had about enough of Gulak and tells him to get to the point because he’s tired of listening to Gulak’s nonsense. Gulak gets to his point: Alexander lets his potential competitors wear themselves out and then steals all the glory, which makes absolutely no sense to anyone but Drew Gulak, and tells him to take a page out of Brian Kendrick’s book, and that Cedric Alexander will be known as the Brock Lesnar of 205, even though Alexander has defended his title more since WrestleMania than Lesnar has in his entire reign.

Cedric takes the insult much better than I would have but warns Gulak that he just guaranteed that Brian Kendrick was going to be in for a world of hurt during their match later in the show.

In 205’s main event, Cedric took on The Brian Kendrick.  Cedric was flying solo, which seems like a bad idea.

This was a really good match. Kendrick did a great job of feeding Alexander while not looking like a total chump.

Drew Gulak came out at one point and distracted Cedric, which lead to some under the ring shenanigans with Kendrick and Cedric. However, the affects of the dirty tricks didn’t last long and Cedric powered back. Kendrick tried to hit the White Bread #1, but Cedric countered by throwing him outside.

This match is how title matches should be done on every show, both guys looked great and it really felt like the title could change hands. Cedric hits the Lumbar Check, which looks like it hurts like hell, and gets the three count.

Gulak is FURIOUS that Kendrick lost, even though Kendrick winning would’ve thrown a wrench in Gulak’s SummerSlam plans. Gulak moves like he’s going to confront Cedric in the ring, but while Cedric is urging him to come in the ring, he’s attacked from behind by Jack Gallagher. Before any other shenanigans can happen, Drake Maverick comes running out and threatens to revoke Gulak’s  #1 Contendership if he and Gallagher don’t get out of the ring and go to the back. If Cedric’s still thinking of going solo, he might want to rethink that.

Kalisto vs Tony Nese: The Lucha House Party was in action against the Party Crashers in one-on-one action this week in a very good, hard-hitting match up. Kalisto won with the Salida del Sol, though nothing can be taken away from Nese who seemed to have tweaked his knee at one point.

As Kalisto was leaving, he was confronted by Buddy Murphy, who wasn’t happy about his buddy, Nese, being defeated and things quickly got physical. Kalisto was saved from being a long dart by Lince Dorado, who is supposed to be out with a ruptured tendon in his thumb. The Lucha House Party buddies quickly took Murphy out with stereo superkicks left the Party Crashers flat.

Lio Rush vs Ricky Martinez: Rush comes out first and cuts a promo about how people were made he didn’t give Tozawa a rematch, but Rush says that he’s a hot commodity and that everyone wants a piece of him. He says he was tempted to give Tozawa a rematch but thought it wasn’t fair since he’s already found someone way more qualified to face him than Tozawa, which is apparently the guy waiting for him in the ring.

This match was quick, but Martinez did a really good job. Rush played the arrogant heel who is too big for his britches really well. As Rush is celebrating, Tozawa’s music hits and the Japanese Chainsaw makes his way to the ring. Rush decides to beat a hasty retreat because Tozawa’s ready to fight.

NXT

NXT Championship: Last week, Tommaso Ciampa SHOCKED the WWE Universe by beating Aleister Black for the NXT Heavyweight Championship, with an unintended (I hope) assist from Johnny Gargano.

The Blackheart cut a deranged promo and eviscerated Gargano and Gargano’s screw up from last week.

Black comes out, understandably pissed off by what happened last week, but Gargano runs out of the back and takes down Ciampa. Ciampa beat a hasty retreat, leaving Gargano and Black in the ring.

Gargano, who seems to be his own worst enemy at times, gets on the mic and tells Ciampa that this isn’t his (Ciampa’s) NXT and owns up to the fact that he’s the reason Ciampa is champ right now.

That’s a good enough confession for Black, who lays out Gargano with one kick. In the closing moments of the show, it looks like we’re going to have a triple threat at TakeOver.

Update: Aleister Black suffered a torn groin muscle during a house show and it isn’t clear what’s going to happen with this match.

NXT North American Championship: Adam Cole was not featured on NXT this week. However, GM William Regal made an announcement for TakeOver Brooklyn: Cole WILL defend his North American Title against Ricochet.

NXT Women’s Championship: Shayna Baszler was in action against Candice LeRae in a non-title match. This was a really good match and both ladies looked good, with Baszler getting the submission victory. Though the end of the match was used to build Baszler vs Sane for TakeOver, LeRae made a great argument for being included in that match.

NXT Tag Team Championship: Former champions, Mustache Mountain were in action against Matt Knox and Brandon Taylor. Mustache Mountain get a great pop and their opponents, a jobber team, are already in the ring.

This was a really good match, at least on Mustache Mountain’s end, however Knots and Taylor gave as good as they got. However, this was a quick one with Mustache Mountain coming out on top.

The boys get on the mic, Severn apologizes for what happened in their title match. Severn says that he’s spoken to William Regal and they have a plan. Bate says that they’re on a mission to get back their NXT Tag Titles and that they’re invoking their rematch clause against the Undisputed Era at TakeOver: Brooklyn.

When asked if they had any tricks up their sleeve, MM said that they’ll do to Undisputed Era what they did to them at the Royal Albert Hall. They’re interrupted by War Machine (I think) who vow to destroy anyone who gets in their way.

Heavy Machinery vs The Mighty: Apparently, the Mighty beat one member of Heavy Machinery, but I’m finding that a little hard to believe, these guys are MASSIVE and stiff as concrete.

This was a good match, but I’m a little confused as to why guys as massive as Heavy Machinery are being booked as they are, they should be squashing The Mighty. Maybe it’s just the pudgier guy they’re booking wrong because the tall guy, Tucker, is something else.

The Street Profits interrupt by having a party in the audience, distracting The Mighty, who miss Tucker Knight tagging in his buddy. Machinery hits the Compacter and gets the three. The Mighty aren’t happy, but since Street Profits didn’t come near the ring, the Mighty have no one to blame but themselves. 

EC3 vs Kona Reeves: This was a really good match, but I’m having trouble getting behind either one of these guys. Velveteen Dream comes out and distracts EC3 with a promo about EC3 not getting over what happened at the Royal Albert Hall and says that if EC3 wants to talk about it, he’ll have to come to the Dream’s world. Despite that, EC3 manages to get a pinfall victory over Reeves.

Backstage, EC3 is asked about Dream’s offer and says he’ll play Dream’s game, but Dream has to know that the conversation will turn into a fight. 

Regal makes a match for TakeOver: EC3 vs Velveteen Dream.

Tiffany’s Take

This was a really interesting week for WWE in terms of building for SummerSlam. RAW is suffering a little from booking so many title matches so far in advance, but the ongoing story of Reigns/Lesnar was really good this week. On every show, the main title stories were advanced and some lower card matches were being built. It’ll be fun to see how things will take shape as we start coming into the homestretch for SummerSlam and TakeOver.


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What if Brock Lesnar Beats Roman Reigns at WWE SummerSlam?

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Brock Lesnar’s upcoming SummerSlam match against Roman Reigns has been the talk of the pro wrestling world. That’s largely due to the controversy surrounding The Beast Incarnate’s lack of WWE appearances. But it’s also due to Reigns’ ascension to the top of the company, which seems to still be happening.

For many of his critics, nothing will justify Roman’s reign over WWE. However the overall success of his run at the top also seems predicated on his ability to defeat Brock Lesnar, which he has been unable to do. Roman Reigns, for whatever reason, cannot get past Lesnar. Of course SummerSlam is believed to be the night when Roman finally conquers The Conqueror. But what if he doesn’t?

What are the chances that WWE will keep the Universal Championship around the waist of Brock Lesnar? It seems like an insane notion but when it comes to this rivalry, fans have learned to expect the unexpected. Of course, many of those fans feel that Roman’s win is a foregone conclusion and recent events on Monday Night Raw seem to reinforce that notion.

When Brock put his hands on Paul Heyman, he crossed a line that many thought spelled doom for The Beast’s title run. The idea of Heyman advocating for Reigns and leading him to the Universal title is one that will not go away. Long before WWE teased the possibility on Raw, fans were debating it online.

When Paul stood in the middle of the ring and publicly offered his services to Roman, fans knew the transition was near. Even as Heyman doused Roman with what appeared to be mace, the shocked crowd likely left knowing that Reigns would soon have Paul in his corner. After all, when the company seems to go left, fans automatically expect a sudden turn right.

It seems like the right time to make the move. Brock is headed back to the UFC and WWE needs the Universal Championship back on TV full-time. Roman may not be the popular choice to be champion but at least if he has it, he can drop it to someone else at any moment. Lesnar is not in love with the pro wrestling business and WWE has gone out its way to remind the world of that every week on Raw.

All signs indeed point to Roman Reigns beating Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam. That’s how the company has crafted this storyline and that’s what fans believe to be true. But what is the alternative if Lesnar actually wins on August 19?

Fans know that if Brock does go over on Roman, then the Universal Championship will be no closer to getting back on the red brand than it was before. Lesnar is in the drug testing phase of his UFC return. So he’s likely getting in fight shape in anticipation of his upcoming match against Daniel Cormier.

That means after SummerSlam, Lesnar is gone once again and the title goes with him. He may not even appear on the August 20 edition of Raw. Fans will return to debating his title reign and continuing to hate Roman even though he’s the guy working hard to entertain them.

There are six pay-per-views between SummerSlam on August 20 and WrestleMania 35 on April 7, 2019. That means WWE will have at least six opportunities to book Lesnar to lose the Universal title. But the more time passes, the less likely that Brock will drop the championship. Lesnar will be in the middle of training, with his focus set on January, or possibly February, of 2019.

Lesnar will probably be unavailable. He could always show up for a random promo on Raw or a pre-taped interview alongside Paul Heyman. But for the most part, Brock will likely not be around. WWE will talk about him. Other Superstars will mention him. Fans will complain about him. But Brock Lesnar will continue to be the absentee champion. That is, of course, if Brock does not lose the Universal title in his match.

Lesnar doesn’t have to drop the pin to Reigns in order to lose the championship. He could still beat Roman and leave The Big Dog in the middle of the ring as he’s done so many times before. But as The Beast Incarnate hoists the championship above his head, The Monster Among Men could tear it away from him.

Braun Strowman is the x-factor in this match. He is the one unpredictable element that throws a wrench into the machine and causes fans to completely rethink the outcome. Surely WWE gave Braun the Money in the Bank briefcase for a reason. The company knows what it has with Braun. He has earned the responsibility of being champion. He is the most athletic and most talented big man the company has seen in quite some time.

He’s entertaining without the championship and doesn’t really need it to get over. But when WWE considers who should be on the short list to become Universal champion, Strowman’s name has to be on it. Otherwise, why does he have the briefcase?

Of course Kevin Owens could find a way to beat Strowman at SummerSlam. If he does, then he could cash in on Roman Reigns if The Big Dog does indeed beat Brock Lesnar. But that is a big “if.”

The time has come for Brock Lesnar to lose the Universal Championship. He’s on his way out of WWE and everyone knows it. Roman Reigns is the top guy in WWE and everyone knows that as well. But there is a chance that the company could put Brock over at SummerSlam and send him to the UFC with the Universal Championship. When it comes to WWE, anything is indeed possible. 


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Official Chairshot Picks: WWE SummerSlam 2018

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Alright, so now we get to the main course of the weekend, SummerSlam! Will it out perform most of the other main roster Pay-per-Views, or will this become the (superman)punch line of numerous jokes for the next few months?

Before we get to the breakdown, now I can go over our standings, not including last night’s Takeover.

So Extreme Rules best record was: Steve Cook

 

Thanks to Steve’s performance last PPV, he’s closed the gap a little on the man who’s been leading this game since Day 1-ish. It is him, it doth be, D.P.P.

 

 

And as the site grows, so does our game, so for our newer players, let’s see who’s setting the pace: Francesca Scopelliti

 

Well now that we’ve covered the Pick Standings, let’s get to our thoughts for the 7 hour monster that is SummerSlam.

 

Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas & Zelina Vega vs Rusev & Lana

Well the Kickoff Show is treated as an extension of SummerSlam nowadays, so we’ve got a little undercard feud hopefully ending today. Rusev Day has slowly been falling apart since Aiden English consistently tries to help, but makes things worse. Doing his best impression of Caboose from Red vs Blue, Aiden and his ‘help’ will be a big factor in this match

Mathew: Andrade & Vega
Andrew: Rusev & Lana
Tiffany: Rusev & Lana
Deez: Rusev & Lana
Eric: Rusev & Lana
Weigell: Andrade & Zelina
Francesca: Andrade & Zelina
Steve: Rusev & Lana
David: Double Count Out
McLeod: Andrade & Zelina
Abe: Rusev & Lana
Big Rick: Andrade & Zelina
Korey: Andrade & Zelina
Platt: Rusev & Lana
Jimi: Andrade & Zelina
Kirstin: Andrade & Zelina
DPP: Andrade & Zelina
Cook: Andrade & Zelina
PC: Andrade & Zelina
Big Dave: Rusev & Lana
Greg: Rusev & Lana
Patrick: Andrade & Zelina
Denise: Andrade & Zelina
Harry: Andrade & Zelina
Tony: Rusev & Lana

Official Chairshot Pick: Andrade & Zelina 14-10-1

Andrade Cien Almas Zelina Vega WWE Smackdown

 

 

Cruiserweight Championship Match: Cedric Alexander (c) vs Drew Gulak

With no main show support and still trying to rebuild their damaged image, 205 Live has been relegated to the pre-show all year. With two conflicting styles, this match has potential to be really good. Gulak’s mat based submissions against Cedric’s combination of brawling and high flying leave a lot of room to work. Aside from that, I don’t expect a lot. This won’t suddenly have the fans clamoring for the Cruisers to be back on Raw, but a good match will continue to rebuild the brand.

Mathew: Cedric Alexander
Andrew: Drew Gulak
Tiffany: Cedric Alexander
Deez: Cedric Alexander
Eric: Cedric Alexander
Weigell: Cedric Alexander
Francesca: Drew Gulak
Steve: Cedric Alexander
David: Drew Gulak
McLeod: Drew Gulak
Abe: Cedric Alexander
Big Rick: Cedric Alexander
Korey: Cedric Alexander
Platt: Cedric Alexander
Jimi: Drew Gylak
Kirstin: Drew Gulak
DPP: Cedric Alexander
Cook: Drew Gulak
PC: Cedric Alexander
Big Dave: Cedric Alexander
Greg: Cedric Alexander
Patrick: Cedric Alexander
Denise: Cedric Alexander
Harry: Drew Gulak
Tony: Cedric Alexander

Official Chairshot Pick: Cedric Alexander 17-8

WWE Cedric Alexander

 

Raw Tag Team Title Match: B-Team (c) vs The Revival

The flukey team of jobbers turned undefeated idiot savants, against the only real tag team on the brand.  It’s gonna be hard for me to accept The Revival losing when this should be exactly the type of match, “old school tag team specialist”. should thrive in. But who knows, the WWE likes to milk comedy bits that seem well received, so I can definitely see a few more months of B-Team as champions.

Mathew: The Revival
Andrew: The Revival
Tiffany: The Revival
Deez: The Revival
Eric: B-Team
Weigell: The Revival
Francesca: B-Team
Steve: The Revival
David: B-Team
McLeod: The Revival
Abe: The Revival
Big Rick: The Revival
Korey: B-Team
Platt: B-Team
Jimi: B-Team
Kirstin: The Revival
DPP: The Revival
Cook: B-Team
PC: B-Team
Big Dave: The Revival
Greg: The Revival
Patrick: B-Team
Denise: B-Team
Harry: The Revival
Tony: B-Team

Official Chairshot Pick: The Revival 14-11

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My Favorite SummerSlam Matches Over the Years

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SummerSlam

This was inspired by a topic by another wrestling fansite that I saw yesterday. The topic was: What is your all-time favorite SummerSlam match. Anyone who has ever asked me what my all-time favorite anything will tell you, my answers are always a little complicated because it’s hard for me to pin down one single favorite anything because my favorites change depending on the day, my mood, and what pops into my head. However, I do have several SummerSlam matches that I would consider my favorites.

1. Intercontinental Championship Match: Bret vs The British Bulldog – SummerSlam 1992

This is still considered the greatest Intercontinental Championship Match of All Time, and with good reason. This was an amazing match by both men. The story of their conflict affecting their personal relationship (Davey Boy was Bret’s RL brother-in-law at the time) was a little ‘eh’ but pretty interesting at the time. Watching Davey Boy win the Intercontinental Championship in London, with a HUGE home country crowd cheering for him was amazing. The pop must’ve been deafening LIVE because it was loud on video and Wembley Stadium was open air, so it must’ve been loud.

Where I was: I was nine when this match happened, my parents weren’t into wrestling so I never got to watch PPVs live, but I remember a guy my dad worked with loaning me his taped copy of the PPV and I just remembered being enthralled. The storyline didn’t really interest me, but I remember loving the match.

2. Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match: Triple H vs The Rock – SummerSlam 1998

This is an underrated classic, in my opinion. When people think of Triple H and Rock now, they don’t think ‘ladder match’, which is a shame because this was a really good match. Triple H and Rock were just coming into their own as main event players and were leading feuding factions Degeneration X and Nation of Domination. The ladder match was, admittedly, not as good as the TLC matches that would become legendary a couple of years later, but it was still very good and is definitely worth a watch.

Where I was: I was fifteen when this match happened and saw it later on video. It’s crazy to think of a time when Triple H and the Rock weren’t in the main event scene, let alone being in a ladder match together.

3. WWF Tag Team Championship Tables, Ladders, and Chairs Match: Edge and Christian vs the Dudley Boys vs the Hardy Boys – SummerSlam 2000

The match that launched a hundred careers. This is a legendary match for a very good reason, not only was it great on its own, but it launched six careers outright, spawned several sequels, and would eventually get its own PPV. It was one of those matches where no one really remembers who won (Edge and Christian, BTW), they just remember how crazy the match was. All six guys tore the house down and well-deserve the legendary status the match gave them.

Where I was: I was seventeen in 2000 and would see the highlights on RAW later and when I saw the full match, I was amazed and intrigued by TLC. Ladder matches are still some of my favorite kinds of matches, in part because of TLC.

4. WWF Championship Match: The Rock vs Triple H vs Kurt Angle – SummerSlam 2000

This match is one of my favorites because it was not only a really good match on its own, but I was enamored with the Triple H/Stephanie/Kurt Angle storyline going into it. For those who weren’t watching WWF back then, the storyline revolved around Triple H becoming convinced (with good reason) that Kurt Angle was trying to move in on Stephanie McMahon, who was Triple H’s on-screen wife at the time (they would get married in RL a few years later) while they were both being managed by Stephanie and challenging Rock for the WWF Championship. This was one of the more intriguing storylines of the Attitude Era, which had primarily relied on sex and shock for ratings, rather than interesting storylines, or good wrestling. This was one of those matches where the storyline overshadowed the title, which I normally hate as an adult, but teenage!me was enthralled by the love triangle.

Where I was: As stated above, I was seventeen and getting ready to enter my senior year of high school.

5. Hell in a Cell Match: Edge vs The Undertaker – SummerSlam 2008

This was the culmination of the Edge/Undertaker feud that had been going on since 2007. Edge had done everything imaginable to screw Taker out of the World Heavyweight Championship, thank in large part to his onscreen relationship with SmackDown GM, Vicki Guerrero. Unfortunately, Edge made the HUGE mistake of thinking with the brain between his legs instead of the one between his ears. When Vicki found out that Edge had cheated on her with their ‘wedding planner’, Alicia Fox, she was NOT happy and hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. As the ultimate act of vengeance against her faithless husband, Vicki not only brought back Undertaker, who had been ‘fired’ after Extreme Rules, but put his return match inside Hell in a Cell against Edge.

This match was brutal, even for a Hell in a Cell match. Taker and Edge hit each other with everything but the kitchen sink, though that may have been because no one had thought to put one under the ring. Even the commentators weren’t safe as a spot by Taker actually knocked out a section of the Cell and narrowly missed hitting JR and Tazz, who were doing commentary. Taker would emerge victorious, and would give the WWE Universe one of the most memorable moments in SummerSlam history, when Taker chokeslammed Edge through the ring and flames burst out of the hole.

Where was I: I was 25 when this match happened and watched it on DVD later. I cheered when Edge was chokeslammed to Hell and that Taker was back.

6. Lumberjack Match: Dean Ambrose vs Seth Rollins – SummerSlam 2014

I love this match just because it was fun and crazy. Seth Rollins had just turned heel on Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns and Dean was out for revenge. So, after beating Rollins in the Beat the Clock challenge, Dean was allowed to choose the stipulation for their SummerSlam match and he chose a Lumberjack Match, but not just any old Lumberjacks would do. In a display of maniacal brilliance, Dean decided that the Lumberjacks would consist of the people the Shield had attacked during their run, which would ensure that neither he nor Seth would have allies in the match and that they would tear each other apart. The Lumberjacks were hilariously bad at keeping Ambrose and Rollins IN the ring, but it made for some great spots. Seth would emerge the victor, but not without some help and after Dean used Seth’s own finisher, the Curb Stomp, against him.

Where was I: I was just getting back into watching wrestling full time when this match happened and I was livid that Dean lost, but looking back, I really enjoyed the match.

7. RAW Tag Team Championship: The Bar vs Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose – SummerSlam 2017

Did you honestly think this Dean Ambrose/Shield fangirl was going to leave out Rollins and Ambrose reuniting after three years of feuding to take on the Bar? The story of Rollins and Ambrose mending their fences and beating the Bar at SummerSlam was such a big deal last year, The New York Post actually dubbed it the most interesting storyline of the SummerSlam build. It was a slow build but to finally see Ambrose and Rollins united and champions was great storytelling and had me running around my house like a nut when they won.

Where was I: I was on my sofa, watching this live and screamed and cried when they won.

So there are the my all time favorite SummerSlam matches…at least right now. I know that there are sometimes gaps of several years between them, but these are the ones that I love to rewatch, sometimes repeatedly. What are your favorites?

 


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