Tuesday, 28 October 2014

WWE Hell in a Cell 2014

WWE Hell in a Cell 2014

Live on Sunday 26th October 2014 from the American Airlines Centre in Dallas, Texas, WWE presented its sixth annual Hell in a Cell themed Pay Per View. Would WWE use this to craft out a future foundation with two new upstarts among its two most stable performers? Could it also be bothered to help the lower cast talent in their attempts to have an all rounded approach or would WWE become forgetful for the big effects?

Let’s find out… 

Intercontinental Championship
2 out of 3 Falls
Dolph Ziggler (c) Vs Antonio Cesaro

The pair begin with holds by one another. A shoulder barge takes a technical side from Cesaro holding down Ziggler. Dolph missed a chance with a neckbreaker and dropkick as Cesaro goes for the Cesaro Swing instead. Ziggler cheaply reverses for a two fall pin. Cesaro drops Ziggler outside before bringing him back in for another Swing attempt. After taking a two count on Dolph Ziggler, the bleach blonde flowing champ rolled up Cesaro for a three fall cheap pin to get a 1-0 lead.

Cesaro returns with fists as the referee separates them to start the second fall. Cesaro lands the running uppercut for a two fall. Cesaro misses an elbow drop of the turnbuckle. Ziggler takes charge again. Cesaro returns with dominating offense now failing to get a pinfall. Ziggler locks on a sleeper hold as Cesaro climbs with the hold locked on. Cesaro turns it into a powerful suplex for another two fall. Cesaro catches Ziggler in mid-air with an uppercut. Two fall. Ziggler goes for a two count too. The pair counter one another. Ziggler was allowed to block the Neutralizer and smashed a lucky superkick from nowhere to follow the Zig Zag on Antonio Cesaro as Dolph Ziggler clambers over Cesaro for the win and overall series at two falls to nil. This made Cesaro look entirely weak with an extraordinary sell proving how underutilised he truly is. 

Nikki Bella Vs Brie Bella

Become winner’s Personal Assistant or Leave WWE

Fighting it out once more the Total Divas finally went at it. Brie received “YES!” chants from the crowd. The pair take their moments each before were back to square one. Brie misses a corner moment as Nikki runs into an elbow. Brie charges onto Nikki’s shoulders as Nikki drops her down to the ground with a back breaker. Nikki hits knees into Brie’s face.  Fans chant for “JBL” since becoming bored. Brie counters to her feet and plants a Facebuster on Nikki for a two fall. Brie runs the ropes and charges outside at Nikki, trying to recharge. Brie lands a top turnbuckle dropkick back inside for another two count. Nikki counters with corner action and hits the Rack Attack for a two count. Brie uses the YES! Lock from her absent husband as Nikki reaches the rope break with her sneakers. Nikki whacks Brie with a ferocious forearm smash. Nikki Bella follows through with another Rack Attack to cover Brie Bella and win the match with a three fall victory. 

WWE Tag Team Championship
The Uso’s Vs Stardust and Goldust (c)

Stardust begins talking trash and slapped down instead. Jey Uso leads the ring action. Goldust enters as Jey remains in charge. Jimmy tags in to help double team. Stardust re-tags in and Goldust helps turn the battle around. Goldust comes back in with a hard slam gfor a two fall. The ‘dust’s continue to tag back and forth. Goldust then runs into an uppercut aas Jimmy dumps Goldie to the ground. Jey receives the tag and jumps on Goldust outside. Stardust is sent out as well. Jey then bounds over on him to the crowd delight. Jey returns Goldust to the ring and flies the cross body for a near three fall at two. The Samoan Drop was also added for another two count. The Rikish splash took another two fall. Stardust was taken out again as Goldie nailed a spinebuster for a clos two cont. Goldie uses chops in the corner to wear down the Uso. Ducking and throwing back an elbow gave the Uso’s more time. Goldust was smacked with a stunning superkick. The Uso’s soon both climbed corners with both their opponents. All are down after a superplex sensation drops everyone. Stardust then lands a cheap shot as legal man Goldust plants his finisher to halt both Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso to keep hold of the tag titles. 

Hell in a Cell
Randy Orton Vs John Cena

  • Winner becomes #1 contender to Brock Lesnar's WWE World Heavyweight Championship

The winner of this battle will gain a number one contenders spot against absent WWE World Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar at a forthcoming Pay Per View. 

WWE’s two strongest players decided to go at it. Orton, clad in new and delicious grey tights took on dark black lower back shorts and arm-banded Cena. Cena battled back on the inner outside by the steps and cage wall. Cena was tapped into the wall and bounced off with no show of steel collision. A quick two fall in the ring came from Rand. Orton brings a chair into the ring. Cena blocks with a Fisherman’s Suplex. Orton comes back with head-butts. Cena gets smacked with the chair to the face as Orton takes a two count. 

The chair is placed into the corner between the ropes. Smooth DDT from sweet baby Orton. Another two fall only. Sweaty and tired Orton uses his stamina to slam Cena into the outside steps and pushes Cena into the steel wall. “Let’s Go Randy” from some fans was heard as Cena kicked out of another two fall. The Cena chants of indifference began when “Cena Sucks” started.

Cena jumped a clothesline on Randy to change the pace. Some close falls from Cena before both took a slowed down approach. Cena flung Orton outside carelessly as “that bought Cena some time” Michael Cole quipped.

Cena, holding Orton sideways push tapped him into the steel, which had no aggression whatsoever. Orton then slammed Cena from the corner post with effective power. This truly highlights the difference between wrestler and personality.

Orton took another two fall. Cena jumped over the ropes as a throw from Orton in a silly comedy fashion. Fans, so annoyed, calmly asked for an “RKO” as Cena started throwing Orton around the inner cage structure from the ring. Cena pulls out a table from under the ring. Orton cleverly pushed the tip of the table over as Cena tried to drop him through it and countered swiftly. Orton kept taking the near falls all over. Cena kicked out so quickly and so easily with no resistance that it makes fans lose interest, regardless of how great his opponent works for him.

Cena slid stopped the table clash as Orton dropped a thunderous RKO to rapture in the crowds. Cena instantly kicked out at two so easily which again detracted slightly. Cena was then smashed into the table with vicious intent from Orton, but Cena just dropped into it making an empty moment. Tables should be big deals and Cena blew the spot. He kicked out quick again with a two count.

Rand began dismantling the steel steps to bring into play. “Cena has not moved” JBL said after two to three minutes of Orton getting the steps to the centre of the ring. Orton pounds the mat as Cena rises and then back slams Orton into the steps with a follow up of five knuckle shuffle jump down looking entirely weak. Orton avoids an Attitude Adjustment to grab Cena’s knackers with a low blow. Those are legal in this battle, as Cole informs us. It may be dirty, but it’s allowed.  Orton lusciously licks his tongue as he stands over Cena with his towering abs and dripping sweat to limber up for a punt. He misses as Cena applies the no pressure STF hold. Cena’s comedy routine with open mouth and extended arms away from Orton’s jaw were as ludicrous as ever. It seems Cena can never be bothered to make it more effective and believable. 

Cena lifts the steps above his head in Superman fashion and hurls them over at Orton outside. This is the typical Cena routine in Hell structures. It looks insanely weak for him. Cena jumped up from the ground inside and just dropped Orton with a chance AA. Fast paced action is one thing, but that wasn’t it.

Cena slowly drops a second AA as Orton slammed a hugely amazing RKO counter on shoulder drop as Orton kept possuming. “Cena survived again” Cole tells us from the kick out. Cena tried to get a win but two fall again on Orton since his big move again. 

Cena brings in another table. Orton tried to stop Cena’s attempt when climbing the turnbuckle with a counter as Cena superplexed Orton off the top and through the table to get the win and cover Randy Orton for a John Cena victory and future title opportunity at Brock Lesnar’s heavyweight title. 

United States Championship
The Miz w/ Damien Sandow Vs Sheamus  (c)

The announcing duties of Cody Rhodes’ wife Eden is just horrible. WWE released Justin Roberts only two weeks ago, after Raw. WWE are testing out a female lead who isn’t Lillian Garcia and attempting to create a future whilst saving Renee Young for future broadcasting panels. Roberts departure was necessary but his replacement needs to be thought more clearly of.

Both trade blows as Miz is flung by Sheamus in a hip toss. Mizdow shares Miz’s pain on the outside as his stunt double miming all his actions. Miz gets the chops on the ropes treatment as Sandow places himself on the bottom ropes providing humour as Sheamus clubs away for ten.

Miz tries to use Sandow as bait for Sheamus who moves and Sandow is hit by Miz instead. Miz now takes an advantage over Sheamus in a quick turn of events by lucky changes. Sandow provides great humour outside where needed to get through the strain of both Miz and Sheamus in a match together. 

Sheamus runs at Miz in the corner to be lifted and shoved outside. Sheamus charges from the top turnbuckle for a two fall. Lacklustre Miz counters and charges as Sheamus takes control. Miz makes a sloppy non sell of backbreaker takeover. Cheap knees to the face of Sheamus and DDT follow. 

“Mizdow’s awesome! The crowd acknowledge. Miz rolls Sheamus around as a crushing backslam stops the wannabe star. Mizdow tells Sheamus not to do so on the apron as Miz rolls Sheamus over. Sheamus counters but the ref is busy with Mizdow. Miz cheaply rolls over the champ again but fails to win at two only from a Skull Crushing Finale. 

Sheamus smashes a Brogue Kick from nowhere on a declining Miz from the turnbuckle to retain the United States Championship in another lukewarm victory.

Mizdow lies on the floor feeling Miz’s pain. Sheamus plays with loser Miz to encourage Sandow’s miming humour. Sheamus makes them do the classic YMCA dance. Even JBL joins in. Yeehaw! Then a Brogue Kick ends the fun and games. It’s fun to stay at the… Y-M-C-A!!!!!!!!!!

Brie Bella packs luggage into the car as Nikki wants her smoothie she asked for from her sis. Trying to make amends with Nikki, Brie gets smothered in the smoothie, tipped all over her. “That was for you” Nikki says before leaving in the car. 

Rusev w/ Lana Vs Big Show

Ravishing Russian Lana, in a pretty in pink, sheen suit looked exactly that.

She asked the crowd to “Shut Up.” Lovely Lana asked for silence to listen to the Russian Anthem as Big Show then clambered out to greet Rusev instead. 

Big Show began clubbing Rusev into the corner. Big Show missed a big boot as Rusev blocked and slammed it down on his shoulders to take control. Rusev quickly worked down the legs of Show well and both looked very good at this.

The match slowed where Rusev worked over Show, who feigned pain convincingly. Show then used his tree trunk leg, as Cole put it, around Rusev to break free. Rusev flipped a powerful suplex to keep in charge. Show countered Rusev tying his legs up into a pretzel back body twist hold effectively. Rusev reached the rope to break free. 

Big Show changed pace and took control with a chokeslam attempt but was stopped by a walking Mark Henry down the ramp joining the match outside. Rusev turned Show over and placed him into the Camel Crush Accolade to beat Big Show in a smooth battle for the big behemoths. This was both their finest work to date. 

Mark Henry checked on Show as a dishonourable turn was being teased weeks into tonight. The two remained friends, at least for now. 

WWE Divas Championship
AJ (c) Vs Paige w/ Alicia Fox

AJ carries Paige through the battle as Paige uses headlock start ups and shove downs as usual with no impact. AJ keeps good flow and a high roundhouse kick to Paige. Outside Alicia goes for AJ. AJ jumps on Paige as flunkie Paige grabs AJ and flings her into the outside barricade unconvincingly. 

Novice diva Paige misses a head-butt on lying down AJ and stands around stalling for time looking clueless. She screams. Weak and unconnective knees and another yell fool nobody. AJ kicks out at one. Paige takes an easy submission on AJ whilst adding no emphasis or thrill to the match. Quieter than usual from the crowd, Paige keeps the match empty, loose and boring. AJ runs into a leg boot of Paige to keep the match interesting. AJ clips an impressive boot jab to Paige’s face to escape weardown. Two fall follows. Alicia pounds the outside in support for Paige. AJ locks on a body to a body wrap around hold. Paige counters, holding AJ to flipping her over. Paige taps AJ into the corner barricade again with no skill. A black man dressed in a white man muscle body suit and a Bray Wyatt fan sitting next to Mankind (not the real loser) was a joy in the crowd. They went back into the ring as Paige hit her head on the barricade on a counter. Alicia helped her back in the ring as AJ locked on the Black Widow submission to defeat fluke challenger Paige. Failure Paige attacked Alicia with a tap kick afterwards. Alicia was literally foxed by Paige’s selfish behaviour since failing to win. 

Hell in a Cell
Dean Ambrose Vs Seth Rollins

Ambrose came to the ring with a kendo stick and pulled lots of chairs from under the ring into the match. Ambrose decided to climb the top of the Cell now instead. Channelling The Sandman may be revolutionary but WWE need to book Ambrose well and not too much as a gimmick if to connect on a wider scale. For now, let’s see how it goes. It’s a start, I suppose.

Rollins arrives with the sweet chipmunk come water otter Jaime Noble and baldie Joey Mercury. They need some miracle grow though. Noble in tights is a win win. Corporate is a bit lacking. 

Oh no! Noble and Mercury are climbing both sides of the structure to reach Ambrose. Both ask Ambrose to go to the ring as the Kendo stick maniac unloads on them both. Rollins has climbed the side and ambushes Rollins up top as they both fight. The Authority stooges Noble and Mercury join in on an Ambrose beatdown. Rollins calls for Ambrose to be hurled off the cage as Ambrose fights them away. Rollins tries to climb off the cage as Ambrose stops him. Noble stops Ambrose as both Rollins and Dean descale the cell. Ambrose gets Rollins on the cell as both punch each other. Ambrose smashes a blow at Rollins as both then fall to the ground, crashing through the announce tables below. Ambrose dropped after Rollins. The crowd didn’t fully go wild, as it was slightly mistimed and awkward to place into history books, but enough to bypass for the momentary thrill. It was a tremendous ask of both, which the pair worked well with. Our favourite will always be the six-man, Undertaker-Rikishi chokeslam. That was epic. As a new age moment it was still okay. 

Ambrose breaks free from his stretcher and goes for Rollins untying him and flinging him into the cell. He smacks the cell door on Rollins and screams for the cell to be locked. Now the match officially begins as the cage is locked.

Ambrose finds duct tape in his bag of goodies. Hurt by Rollins taking control of his Shield supergroup breakdown, Dean dashes out chair smashes to Seth. Failing to accept his flaws, Ambrose blames Rollins for The Shield’s closure. Ambrose running dropkicks Rollins into the side cage perfectly. He sets a table in the cage wall corner and lifts Rollins up but Seth reverses free. Ambrose running launches at Seth through the ring to the cage wall.  Rollins fights off Ambrose suplexes twice and puts Ambrose into the chairs in the ring instead. Rollins adds another table to the mix. Titled from outside to in the ring edge by the apron, Rollins tries to suplex Ambrose over onto it but falls onto the table instead. Ambrose goes to the turnbuckle and elbow drops Rollins through. 

Ambrose shoves Rollins’ face into the steel as Kane craftily lets off smoke in Ambrose’s face through the cell with an extinguisher. Rollins powerbomb smashes Ambrose into the other corner table from earlier. 

Seth running footstomps over Ambrose for a two fall in-ring. Rollins brings in his briefcase and then smashes chair attacks on Ambrose. A swift flurry of powerful counter attacks and a clothesline for Ambrose who grabbed the case in an opportunistic flurry to smash Rollins instead. Ambrose finds cinder blocks from beneath the ring and brings them into play. 
The lights in the arena darken and a weird voice is heard chanting. 

A lantern is in the middle of the ring with smoke billowing out and a hologramic image inside. Then a figure jumps out and attacks Ambrose. It was Bray Wyatt! Bray Wyatt arrives in the crab leering over Ambrose, face to face. Wyatt bodyslams him to the mat. 

Wyatt kisses the forehead of Ambrose and plants Sister Abigail. Seth Rollins covered Dean Ambrose amid the confusion to be crowned the victor in the pair’s first Hell in a Cell outing with fans looking toward two future players to develop. Both can be proud of their actions this evening for the greater good of stabilising WWE as workable and growing options. 

PPV Rating – 5/10

Men/Women of their matches – Antonio Cesaro, Nikki Bella, Jey Uso, Randy Orton, Damien Sandow, Big Show, AJ, Seth Rollins 

Man/Woman of the PPV – Bray Wyatt

Big Show and Rusev entered their finest work for a long time tonight. Both have improved their game drastically. Small tweaks give the greatest of change. Proof that if you sit back, think and try hard enough, you can enter a great show. Let’s hope they don’t get complacent and fall back into comforting habits. Will WWE keep Big Show and Mark Henry together as a team or turn them? The answer is obvious as WWE usually turn either of the pair many times and feel both cannot be on the same side at the same time. We’ll have to see how WWE plays, but maybe the pair can at least tag on the post Raw.

The tag battle with the ‘dusts was always the most ludicrous decision to change the titles for. Still on them, the tag division is a joke and both of them aren’t really working out. If WWE are serious about the division it will get more teams and keep the competition available, especially with the ever workable Uso’s.   

The Divas division is also an empty one. While AJ holds it together with flunkies like Paige, no one else is available. While the ‘no title on Total Divas’ rule is right to enforce, the credibility of the title is waning. All thanks to putting it on Paige multiple times has proved costly. WWE need to put new challengers into the fray. Paige doesn’t have it and fails as a pure prospect in the ring. Triple H’s attempt to get fans on side by selecting favourite ‘men of the minute’ NXT call ups has added another failure to the show, ratings and WWE management ploy. Hire or call up capable divas. Sasha Banks should have been brought up but Triple H thought Paige was better because everyone was raving about her as fans on the internet often do. How did that turn out? They turned on her because they realised she couldn’t own it on the main shows. Look to Bayley and others as well. If there is a strong place for the chicks of NXT to hatch on Raw then the time would be now. 

Orton and Cena battled again. WWE are fast running out of options for Cena opponents. This one hasn’t been done in a while for WWE standards. It was a decent encounter, but mostly held by Randy alone. Failing to be respected fully, Orton, who is now signed to a part time contract, proves WWE need to stop neglecting its stars and boost its potential for the future. Cena and Orton will not be there forever. However, the time they still spend their, they have still got multiple years in them and need good, new challengers to play with. WW only have these two to try and build the new crew in WWE land. Options are running out fast. 

Rollins and Ambrose were allowed to be the main event. This was encouraging but somewhat distant at the same time. They needed bigger build up than the previous Raw’s coasting along. Nevertheless both pro’s made it work but it lacked a little magic and finesse overall. The angle off the cage was too difficult to fully control and lost a few hardcore fans. However, the match had a great outcome, led to new feuds and boosted both young stars going forward with fresher options. Their battle was cool but was only really a brawl. While this is Ambrose’s thing, it needs to be controlled so that it doesn't veer off in fan appreciation as a one dimensional act.

The Bella battle which saw the pair get back together as quick as they feuded for a Total Divas special new series has turned fans off. After tonight’s outcome, WWE can keep the month long program working but need to figure something better out long term. Fans are bored of the sisterly stupidity with no real reason behind it. 

Cesaro and Ziggler was a letdown. Why WWE make stipulations that they don’t even care about is baffling. Cesaro, even though had a strong presence, looked like a plus one stooge to the lacking credibility of Dolph Ziggler. Dolph can’t be a star WWE need and needs to drop the title soon. WWE should set a three way with Miz and Mizdow to pass the strap to Sandow on Raw and free up Ziggler, who plans to enter John Cena’s Survivor series team. Or WWE should drop him form the team to give Sandow a PPV win to raise the prestige of the IC title instead. Ziggler cannot carry it and is simply a loser with it. The fans don’t respect it or him. Forgetting about it won’t make it disappear. Cesaro was also not allowed to be a star credible of main and mid event status. 

In efforts to boost Ziggler, WWE ruined Cesaro once again. Cesaro, the most over of the two, had the most chance to be a respected star the Universe wants to see. Instead WWE banked on Ziggler, who has yet to do anything of interest and be a star in any right with WWE, let alone as a spare holder of an empty championship now often plagued as a punishment than a privilege. Maybe it was better Cesaro didn’t win, then. However WWE need to boost Cesaro to a heavier role in the company instead of relying on the absent Roman Reigns and some extras in transit to fill a hole. 

For WWE, reaLising the UK is a big market, should have advertised strongly that since the UK clocks go back one hour, fans were to lose one hour of programming. While not their fault, WWE will have naturally lost a few Brit fans in the confusion of clocks going back an hour, as is always the case this time of year. For Hell in a Cell, constantly dirty endings in the past have been causing the show to be rubbish from fan suggestions. 

However, unlike previous years where that view is warranted, this is far better as an ending and new beginning. It has set both Wyatt and Ambrose on a new path and given Rollins a chance to move further from an already dragging story between Ambrose. All three could be future prospects in WWE and letting them shine is the only way to create such future. 

A win for Ambrose would have meant nothing. However, the question remains, how much of that will be wasted again when Triple H returns his new ally and money taking sell out Chris Jericho, who after Wyatt tried to remain his star from Cena ruining it over the Summer, saw Jericho rip it apart entirely for the ‘thrill’ of ‘working with Wyatt’ to boost Jericho’s popularity. Jericho left after destroying Wyatt’s presence.

It was the first PPV which WWE did not host the World title which was quite disappointing. Despite Brock Lesnar being a great star, this should never have happened where the title was relegated to nothingness. WWE need to rectify its approach to diminishing its prestige with title and workforce. 

For WWE, the future still has a very long way to go. Whether they have no choice but to be financially pressured into it, WWE should not reward titles to those who they think are favourites and build instead on the talent available, which is vast. If WWE finally do this, as mentioned countless times, they may stand a chance at keeping a real future in place as WWE's most likeable and veteran stars are not as reliable as once thought. We really cannot rely on Triple H and his 'pot luck/pick and mix' attitude, either. Old hires, also, do not increase a newly defining wrestling age. 

© Max Waltham 28th October 2014

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