SummerSlam is upon us to round out the busy weekend! Do we get any good matches aside from Styles vs Ricochet?
This has not been a great build for one of the biggest WWE shows of the year.
Flair and Stratus feels like they’re just feeding Charlotte another name to build her resume. Bray and Balor is a squash match without The Demon.
I’m already talking myself into disinterest with this show.
Let’s get started before I hate watch this stupid thing.
- WWE Cruiserweight Championship: Oney Lorcan vs Drew Gulak(c): Gulak retains via Cyclone Crash @8:45 – ***
- Apollo Crews vs Buddy Murphy: Murphy wins via DQ @4:20 – **
- WWE Raw Women’s Tag Team Titles: Bliss Cross(c) vs The IIconics: Bliss retains via Twisted Bliss @6:15 – * ½
- WWE Raw Women’s Championship Submission Match: Becky Lynch (c) vs Natalya: Lynch retains via Disarm-Her @12:35 – ** ½
- Dolph Ziggler vs Goldberg: Goldberg wins via Jackhammer @1:50 – N/A
- WWE United States Championship: Ricochet vs AJ Styles (c): Styles retains via Styles Clash @13:00 – **** ¼
- WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship: Bayley (c) vs Ember Moon: Bayley retains via Avalanche Bayley to Belly @10:00 – *** ¼
- If Shane Wins Kevin Quits WWE: Kevin Owens vs Shane McMahon: Owens wins via Stunner @9:20 – ***
- Charlotte Flair vs Trish Stratus: Flair wins via Figure 8 @16:40 – ***
- WWE Championship: Kofi Kingston (c) vs Randy Orton: Double Count Out @16:45 – ***
- Bray Wyatt vs Finn Balor: Bray wins via Mandible Claw @3:25 – ***
- WWE Universal Championship: Brock Lesnar (c) vs Seth Rollins: Rollins wins via Stomp @13:25 – *** ¼ – TITLE CHANGE!!
WWE Cruiserweight Championship: Oney Lorcan vs Drew Gulak(c) – Lorcan couldn’t really be taken seriously, I mean really. Most of us remember him as the jobber for NXT for a while, and then a few tag team showings and we’re supposed to care? No thanks and this match didn’t set the world on fire. It was alright, Lorcan got a fairly convincing false finish, but this felt like it was stuck in first gear.
Apollo Crews vs Buddy Murphy – The match was alright and felt like it was about to pick up, before a wild Rowan appeared. So Rowan wiped out Murphy for saying he was the one to try and kill Roman. A bit of a beat down on Murphy, so the story continues.
WWE Raw Women’s Tag Team Titles: Bliss Cross(c) vs The IIconics – Okay this happened. I don’t know why The IIconics got a rematch when WWE apparently stopped doing that. But things that are said obviously don’t matter. The match was on par for what was expected. These two teams aren’t known for technical prowess and commentary going on about Toy Story references instead of the match ruined any credibility this could’ve had. Glad it’s over.
WWE Raw Women’s Championship Submission Match: Becky Lynch (c) vs Natalya – I want to say they both tried hard, but the match really didn’t seem like it at times. Aside from pretty good selling on both accounts, there were awkward moments, stupid spots and both trying to do the other one’s submission was just bad. Becky’s Sasori-Gatame is terrible, Natalya doesn’t make me care. Every time Natalya is on, I eagerly await the match being over.
Dolph Ziggler vs Goldberg – Ziggler tried to hit a few Superkicks early, but Goldberg powered out at one. Then he hits a Spear and Jackhammer and its match over. The best part to this is that Ziggler’s delusional ass jumps on the mic and says Goldberg got lucky and he’s not a real man. So Goldberg comes back, hits a Spear and walks to the back. Ziggler grabs a mic again, and says he’s still the best and will never be defeated and Goldberg just got lucky twice. Goldberg’s music hits, the crowd erupts in a mixture of cheers and laughter and Goldberg runs the ropes for a momentum driven Spear. So this was fun in a different way than workrate.
D’Wayne Gretzky is the best Canadian announcer in the history of Canadian announcers.
WWE United States Championship: Ricochet vs AJ Styles (c) – Styles worked over Ricochet’s knee and Ricochet sold the injury well. We saw a slower paced match than many probably expected from the two, but it was still a damn good match. Anderson and Gallows didn’t really interfere until the last minute or so, and they played an important role in distracting Ricochet, but it didn’t really detract. Ricochet went for a Phoenix Splash that AJ Styles caught Ricochet and hits the Styles Clash for the pinfall. Damn solid match.
WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship: Bayley (c) vs Ember Moon – We get a really solid wrestling match between these two. Bayley slowed Ember down a bit and kept things grounded, but when Ember was able to ramp up the intensity, she had a few believable moments. She even has a cool Stormbreaker/Codebreaker move she pulled off during the match. This was nice, even if the Frankensteiner countered as a Power Bomb and finishing sequence looked a little off, it was still mostly well done. Good match.
If Shane Wins Kevin Quits WWE: Kevin Owens vs Shane McMahon – Now this wasn’t a mat classic or anything like that, but damned if it wasn’t entertaining. Shane tried to stack the deck with Elias as the Special Enforcer or whatever, so there was always something going on to try and distract Owens or cost him the match. After double stripey shirt bumps, Owens takes out Elias and looks to use the chair on Shane, but the referee recovers to stop that. Owens hands the chair to the ref, and while the referee is dealing with that, Owens kicks Shane betwixt the legs and hits the Stunner. Game over boys! The Canadians have something to be happy about.
Charlotte Flair vs Trish Stratus – This match got a good bit of time, and that helped it be salvageable I suppose is a good word. Trish was never someone I considered a generational wrestler, she was just one of the best of an awful era. We start off with some of the worst looking arm drags in the world and a dumb spill out spot. It also showcased how awful Charlotte is at talking. She repeated the same insult over and over, it was never clever, it was just repetitive and stupid. Then this match dragged for a while, and people pop for signatures or Trish trying to use the Figure 8. Rough at moments, but I suppose it was supposed to be another feather in Charlotte’s already clutter cap of greatest of all time on top of the feel good moment of Trish having one more marquee match. It ended up being fine, but with the way it’s being framed from the WWE, this is nothing to go down in history.
WWE Championship: Kofi Kingston (c) vs Randy Orton – Aside from the startling size contrast between Kofi and Randy, this match was solid. Kofi countered at a few moments to give him some momentum, fought off the Superplex for a nice Leaping DDT, and it was just generally solid. However, the match got slow and when Randy caught Kofi with the RKO and just laughed, the writing was on the wall of something odd. And that’s what we got, Kofi rolled out in front of his family, and Randy took great joy in slowly pulling Kofi up and getting ready for more torment. But apparently the referee started counting immediately cause he gets to 10, before Kofi even freaks out to Randy messing with his family and we get a no decision title match. Randy has a great history with these. Ugh…awful finish to a match that could’ve made Kofi’s reign. Yes, this extends the story, but I find myself caring less now. This match was built on a decade of spite and now it gets diluted to whatever the hell this is.
Bray Wyatt vs Finn Balor – So we get an elongated squash match. Bray makes a great entrance, with a remixed theme and the lantern is inside of what appears to be Bray’s head. Finn was entranced and mostly beat on, got a small spurt of offense but became The Fiend’s first victim. Crowd chanted “That was Awesome”, afterwards and it really was. Great debut, great vignettes with the Firefly Fun House and great way to pass the Mandible Claw from Foley to Bray in the previous weeks. Damn good professional wrestling.
WWE Universal Championship: Brock Lesnar (c) vs Seth Rollins – Rollins is infuriating to watch when he has injuries. His selling is always an afterthought if he does it at all. The injured ribs didn’t stop him from doing anything, merely made him wince on occasion. If anyone ever complained about Cena or Reigns being booked as Superman, I hope you realize this is the same thing. As a match, there was that whole story of desperation from the challenger, but again, his lack of understanding how to sell takes away any emotional connection to his struggle. In the current landscape of wrestling without psychology, this was fine and people may think I underrated it. But this was slightly above average, and that’s being nice.
Overall Score: 5.5/10
This was not a show for people who only watch for in-ring wrestling. The Pre-Show was effectively worthless aside from the Buddy Murphy thing. The show didn’t pick up until Goldberg, because Ziggler’s making excuses was hilarious. But around the point of the Flair/Stratus match, the show dipped again. The finish to the WWE Championship is awful, but at least Bray’s whole Fiend entrance was awesome.
Again, if you just watch for wrestling, this show sucked. As for pushing storylines and general okay/feel good moments, this was alright. Honestly nothing special, but not the worst thing ever.