Extreme Rules 2014
Live on Pay Per View, Sunday May 4th, from the Izod Centre in East Rutherford, New Jersey, would Extreme Rules be a worthy pay off for staff, the WWE Network and its new age performers? The biggest test for WWE was not Extreme Rules, but the WWE Network itself hosting PPV after going it alone from traditional cable providers. Would a future be laid down or simply washed out? Let's find out.
Rob Van Dam Vs Jack Swagger Vs Antonio Cesaro w/ Paul Heyman
RVD begins the show with his Rolling Thunder at Jack Swagger who monkey flipped Antonio Cesaro on top instead. RVD later dropped a powerbomb onto Cesaro to the floor. Cesaro returns later to swing Swagger stopped mid way by Van Dam.
Antonio slammed Swagger with a heavy suplex as RVD elsewhere flew the frog splash to nail Swagger. Jack Swagger became eliminated. That's right. This late triple threat addition was a elimination from the original Swagger/Cesaro collision. Van Dam uses the guard rail and lands on Cesaro from the ring apron. Fans chant ECW. Hardly, but fans are feeling the buzz at this time, which is a comfort to the performers. After using a trash can slightly in ring, RVD takes to the top for a frog splash once more. Rob Van Dam missed as Antonio Cesaro won the battle with a powerful neutralizer. Van Dam continues to use his exact routine from yesteryear in a smooth and easy going relay. If he really wants to re-influence his place, he and WWE are going to need to figure this out with a more current transition.
Alexander Rusev w/ Lana Vs R-Truth and Xavier Woods
If there was ever any doubt that two could overcome one as odds would have it, allow Extreme Rules to enlighten you. After an introduction from the ever cherry glazed lipstick lovely Lana, she absurdly dedicated the match to Russian President Vladimir Putin. There was simply no need. Ingenious WWE allowed Ruzev to dominate the match and crush the pair of superstars who became two random jobbers in the evening. Running as a failed prospect of big men with all muscle mass and no talent, skill or charisma, Alexander Rusev easily crushed Xavier Woods and R-Truth. Woods, one of WWE's so called favoured prospects called up months ago, was pummelled into oblivion. We never saw greatness in Woods, but even if WWE did, a call up to destroy them on national television was plainly ridiculous.
The new reform of Evolution had a chat backstage.
Big E. (c) Vs Bad News Barrett
Quite a lot has occurred in recent weeks for this. First Langston was re-branded as Big E. after WWE got bored of the muscle mass prospect. Adding insult to injury, Bigster had to simply watch a TV screen in the locker-room over two weeks of Raw shows leading to the PPV. On these shows an Intercontinental tournament was launched and dragged on so long it was pointless. Leading candidate Cesaro, by fans, was predictably by this writer, used as a swerve from WWE bigwigs to place Barrett onto the path of IC glory. The tournament failed to build strong momentum as intended for this match itself.
Though Big E. has been a huge liability and careless in his in-ring behaviour WWE once again, likened to Woods, dropped someone they felt important at the time. Not to say 'we told you so' (which we did) we wanted to protect these cautions. WWE chose not to think and placed the path regardless. The result was this disaster of no momentum to either champion or challenger and a waste of talent presented. Given yet another senseless push, Bad News Borette held most of the action. Big E. was allowed a little action in spots to run and support the match. Big E. attempted the Big Ending backbreaker, but was countered by Bad News Barrett who ran a botched and non connective forearm fly followed by the Bull Hammer.
Some fans cheered for Barrett because they were so bored of the IC title in limbo while others had no real reaction. The basis of change was present. It was not for with Big E. or Barrett themselves. Therein lies the problem. Barrett's countless repackage and mid-tier prospects are so dim that not even the IC title can save him from jobber to future endeavours even if WWE are high on him, for now.
Six man Tag Team
Evolution Vs The Shield
The Evolution refit of Batista, Triple H and Randy Orton for this very match up was cast in doubt. Will Triple H's incessant ego drop The Shield a chance to be big names? Is the ego that big that being off television as a headline performer is so difficult to bear he will dilute a PPV instead?
The Shield began clearing house as Evolution then took control. Ambrose was used as whopping boy by Triple H and Co. until he managed a comeback enough to tag in Roman Reigns. Reigns fell to a pedigree but kicked out. So much for a new star in the making. He kicked out of an RKO, performed well by both Orton and Reigns. This one then went into the crowd with fighting. Ooh, how novel. The crowd getting some 'Extreme' action.
Seth Rollins was then required for the flying spot. He launched from the stands onto Orton and HHH, which was perfectly done by The trio's superglue Rollins.
Reigns flew the superman punch onto Batista in the ring during the frucous smashing Batista of Evolution as Reigns picked up the victory for The Shield.
Bray Wyatt w/ Erick Rowan and Luke Harper Vs John Cena
After their weird encounter at Wrestlemania last month, would this match for Wyatt raise the profile after a loss previously when the big stage could have presented such glorious opportunity?
Over with crowd, Wyatt began strong. Cena countered in typical fashion, but met by Rowan upon an escape attempt. The Wyatt's await on yet another attempt for a Cena escape, who clearly did not learn from the first try. Cena's extreme over-animation in character, mannerisms and in-ring action just screams stupidity. Fans are not that stupid. They are fed up with it.
Cena tries a pin which Bray kicks out of. Cena reaches the door now. Again, clever thinking Cena is met by Rowan and Harper who halt the escape. Harper predictably enters the cage. Cena lands an Attitude Adjustment from the top rope failing as Harper saves his family member.
As Cena mounts a chance to escape (again) the lights go out. The sound of a lone child signing "He's got the Whole World in his hands" sounds from a muffled microphone. Distracted and confused John Cena misplaces his faith and is nailed by Bray Wyatt with Sister Abigail to land a clean pinfall victory.
Paige (c) Vs Tamina
Tamina was allowed huge momtuem and dominance over Paige fromthe beginning. After winnning the diva's title in a random encounter with AJ on the post-Wrestlemania Raw, fluke champion Paige has been booked with jobbers to lead to her match this evening. Taking on the likes of Aksana, Alicia Fox, Aksana and alaicia Fox, with a dash of Rosa Mendes thrown in, Paige is nothing more than a flunkie. Paige's interactions were sloppy and inaccurate.
Called up by Triple H's desperate ego trying to prove to WWE up top he can run the show, is pathetic. With his failed stars Sin Cara and Kharma, both of whcih are gone from WWE, HHH is desperate to have a name on TV he can say was his great forward thinking. With his clutches tightly squeezing the skill out of NXT call ups, HHH saw an oppotunity. Picking a fan favouirte who put in a few average performances with a very sprse roster in NXT for fan cheer, HHH has actually cost himself his reputation tenfold.
What makes for NXT success doesn't equate to WWE stardom. Alexander Rusev, Xavier Woods, Bo Dallas (wherever he is) among others prove WWE's mismanagement is costing them a real chance. All to say, 'I did this' because WWE are getting fairly clueless, though not as clueless as TNA, granted. If it can't think of ideas, hire this writer despite your pride costing you everytime. "There is no-one who can do what I can do" Argue all you like, this is a fact.
Tamina was predictable defeated by fluke champ and inexperience mainstage diva Paige. What a waste. Fans want to know when is the point WWE will actually value anything ever again. Will Triple H's re-re-launch of the Diva's division after dropping the tag division since his mates are not champ be ever fruitful? Hmm.
WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Daniel Bryan (c) Vs Kane
After finally gaining the heavyweight gold, Daniel Bryan took his first defence against Kane. The 5 foot 8 superstar who has a different look to WWE and the audience whom respect it took place in WWE's annual new age, past Wrestlemania PPV block. Does this remind you of anyone who had the World title at this stage years prior under all the exact requirements? Expect a loss before Summerslam.
Kane began with a Singapore cane onslaught of Bryan. The re-heated fire breathen Kane provided excellent competition for Bryan. Re-masked and as dangerous as ever, Kane battered the champ in a show of understanding. Bryan changed pace with a tornado DDT off the announce table outside.
The pair took the fight backstage. Ooh. An Extreme Rules thriller every year. After turning the tables on Kane, Bryan however made it memorable, at least for now, using a forklift truck. Wheeling Kane back to the ring on the vehicle front, Bryan lands a headbutt. Kane kicks out. A near fall chokeslam returned to Bryan in retaliation. Bryan uses chair attacks and kendo sticks on the monster before placing the YES! Lock on him. Kane smashes Bryan through a outside stacked table. The monster proceeds to lit a table on fire for Daniel to fly through. Kane is misplaced by Daniel Bryan's skill and Bryan puts Kane through the fiery wood instead. Daniel Bryan follows up with the running knee attack for the win.
PPV Rating - 5/10
Men/Women of their matches - Antonio Cesaro, R-Truth, Big E., Seth Rollins, Bray Wyatt, Tamina, Daniel Bryan
Man/Woman of the PPV -Daniel Bryan
The Swiss sensation of beefcake galore is not growing as WWE intended. Their start/stop treatment is costly at the highest level. Even as a
Max Waltham Paul Heyman guy, Antonio Cesaro could
well be doomed at this point. Favouring Wade Barrett over Cesaro proves WWE
have no idea, even if Cesaro should not be Intercontinental champion.
Barrett as champion, with yet another useless gimmick to try to prove he can make it before WWE finally concede defeat is laughable. It makes the company look entirely stupid, really clueless and very biased. What level of hope is there when it also discredits its own title? WWE need to find real challengers not one word gimmicks that offer no interest whatsoever.
The Shield are on a course of slow burner which we suggested as praise. WWE, however, are unsure how to develop them all whilst keeping the battle ticking over. Stuck in the '80's is clearly hurting the future now.
Tamina should have grabbed the title at Extreme Rules. When WWE are going to boost this aggressive, clever and powerful diva is anyone's guess. People, especially with diva's matches, have low interest and a flunkie champion on a handshake victory will not encapsulate the audience. She needs to be dropped, pronto. Do it now. This will only ever continue your problems. Why would you need such problems unnecessarily?
In the case of Wyatt, it was too little, too late. Wyatt's win was needed at Wrestlemania. Merchandise seller John Cena remains WWE's problem. There is nothing wrong with selling merchandise, but affecting the product from moving forward to a future is wasteful. Anything Wyatt does with Cena over the coming months is not fully momentous, because the culmination at 'Mania was needed to win. Cena, however, has few opponents to battle with. Tired and dated, Cena is losing stride as much as every challenger he fights. The drawing board with WWE must be assessed in order to re-structure the way forward. It is simple. WWE just don't know what to do, so will revert to the past. The result is the present, never a future.
Daniel Bryan is booked as champ. He'll keep it though to the Summer, so WWE need to get on with making real contenders to his title, to validify the heavyweight reign as important, powerful and meaningful after a year in the making with last year's up and down coming of age story.
WWE are really trying to make new stars, that much is clear. Their lack of understanding how to do it, who to place and in what light is making WWE look ridiculous. With it, fans lose interest, even if they continue to watch as standard than be fully engaged. Fans in the Wrestlemania arena were bored during The Undertaker's match, which is shambolic that this legend was resigned to nothingness.
WWE's future is currently lit. We are officially in the underachievers era. The one's that WWE failed to launch correctly have now been placed. In their placings they either are useless or have been used as fodder whilst as champion. That is simply ludicrous. WWE is low on stock. It needs to seriously think about its way forward than simply assume it will be okay.
For WWE, its over reliance on the personal thrill of the WWE Network is reducing its quality. Never to be outdone by anyone, Vince McMahon will want the network to become a roaring success. With already so much money wasted on the network, WWE should have stuck with financing its future with training, new hires and backstage business growers. Fans already disgruntled at the shabby transmissions of choppy and delay features, the WWE's Network is something that may be around from those up top, but the fans will not be encouraged to support it, nor passionately get behind it to boost its popularity. Can it before it grows too problematic. Don't get in 'over your heads' as the company got in a flurry with streaming giant Netflix, as noted by WWE's head office. You're Welcome.
© Max Waltham 05th May 2014