WWE Fast Lane 2015
Vroom Vroom! Get ya motors running! WWE is driving in the Fast Lane! Woooooo! Exciting! The Road to Wrestlemania just one month away looms. Who will travel the route? Will anyone return in time? Does anyone really care?
Live on Sunday 22nd February 2015 WWE presents its first ever Fast Lane Pay Per View. Replacing the costly Elimination Chamber, emanating from the FedExForum in Memphis, Tennessee, could WWE’s new concept PPV really entice the audience before the supershow that is Wrestlemania? Or would it be an unfortunate throwaway event poorly booked at a moment’s notice built on one sole being as a weak attraction? The final question on many lips. Will Randy Orton finally return?
Lets find out...
Tag Team, Six Man
Dolph Ziggler, Erick Rowan and Ryback Vs Seth Rollins, Big Show and Kane w/ Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury
Rollins and Ziggler started the match with back and forth from both. Rollins was then tasked to hep get Rowan over with a mighty backbreaker and bodyslam which was fair. Big Show soon took it to Rowan with a good outside kick to the thigh on Rowan. This worked for the big man as a capable power move. After Kane had a go Rollins was in as the crowd cheered for the fan favourites with an empty "Rowan" chant.
Rollins stopped Ziggler being tagged with a super charged kick off the apron excellently. Ryback was then quickly tagged in by Rowan to get one over on Seth for a bit. Unfortunatley Seth had to stumble to this lump of foolish meat but worked well to help him look bearable. It waas the same routine method for Ryback.
Rollins nailed a strong superkick on Ryback, who then cheaply kicked out on a two making Rollins look daft. Michael Cole overdid the "power!" when Ryback dropped a signature move on Rollins in an opportunistic moment from nowhere.
Ziggler and Kane take it on now. Kane bashes into Big show at the apron and gets knocked down by Dolph for a two count.
Dolph was then pummeled with a hard bump allowing Kane, Big Show and Seth Rollins to get the pinfall victory. The fans were bored and chanted "Randy Orton!" After two choruses, Randy Orton was released from backstage and appeared live! Randy is back! He took out The Authority with a bundle of shockingly good RKO's and almost got Rollins rope DDT'ed until Big Show saved Seth, with a little butt cleavage too on the save. :o
Goldust Vs Stardust
Idiotic lunatic Stardust entered the arena with a faint and empty entrance as always. Pure waste of time. Goldust said just before the match he was planning to beat and get his brother Cody Rhodes back by defeating silly Stardust.
It was a back and forth start as both gained an upper hand start then stopped and went again. Great to see new and original content. Fans in the arena cheered for "Cody" to get him out of his lunatic trance as Stardust. Like it just happens like that. The fans at home however, where perplexed by the naffness of the drab, confusing rubbish going on, or not.
After a technical two and fro or no importance Goldust got a win out of nowhere. Goldust tried to shake hands again but Stardust simply left. Boring. At least it is done now. Let's leave it alone for good. Also a huge problem occurred when the ref was smacked as a botch instead. Oops.
Backstage Stardust attacked Goldust as daddy Dusty Rhodes simply watched. It was a horrendous portrayal by Stardust. This character is never getting over.
WWE Tag Team Championship
The Uso’s (c) w/ Naomi Vs Antonio Cesaro and Tyson Kidd w/ Natalya
After a double date gone wrong at dinner on Smackdown, which we were shown, Nattie finally supported Tyson tonight with applause as Naomi tried to tell Ty not to talk bad to Nat. Nat blamed Naomi for butting in on her relationship. Yeah. Keep ya beak out!
It was a strong start with The Uso's and Kidd, then Cesaro coming in to keep effective control. Kidd continued to work down the leg of Jimmy Uso in a technical joy. Cesaro supported with his power moves and smooth glaze over the match. The Swiss beefcake threw a one legged swing on Uso before tagging in Ty to further wear down their opponent. Kidd was given ample time to show just how good he is, which he fully delivered on.
Kidd got some close two falls throughout. Blind tag was made a Tyson gets double teamed into a Samoan Drop. Cesaro saved the cover with a beefy Bulldog stop. Kidd soon changed the pace as the outside action was intense and quick as Tyson was slammed into the barricade by Uso as all four men were knocked down. A close count-out was broken as a supersplash on Kidd caused Tyson to counter for a near fall. Kidd then cleverly flipped Jimmy over into a sharpshooter as Jey saved the match to then fight Cesaro to the outside.
Another close fall by Kidd almost won the match in a tense piece of action. Superkick to face sends out Cesaro but Tyson Kidd smacks a swift kick to drop The Uso's and win the Tag Team titles with a three count victory. Such personality and passion was on show by all, but especially Kidd and Cesaro.
Face to Face Invitation
Triple H and Sting
Triple H invited Sting on Raw weeks ago, where Sting got the better of Triple H and accept his invitation. On a TV screen, in writing. Wow. Really impressive. As long as Sting gets the paycheck to go home again, right?
Triple H arrived to call out Sting. The silly crow noises on the video played as Sting entered to some drab music and an even lamer entrance. Sting couldn't even be bothered to make an effort to seem interested to be there. There was no personality whatsoever.
He stared at Triple H. "My legacy is putting your legacy out of business" Triple H said as the main reason Sting was upset with WWE's The Authority campaign. "Failure is what you do" Trips added. Hunter tried to tempt Sting to getting his legacy back. Both could go into business together, Trips continued. Offering him all the spoils, merchandise, DVD's, the lot. Oooh. Even a Hall of Fame spot. Triple H went for Sting, who easily countered with a couple of punches. Triple H quickly got the better of Sting and beat him down in a second. "I gave you a chance!" Triple H shouted at the ignorant penny pincher Sting. Triple H grabbed a sledgehammer from beneath the ring a Sting had him face to face with a baseball bat. HHH dropped his hardware as Sting pointed to the Wrestlemania sign. This aint no Undertaker moment. The rip off character of Sting was a washout. He simply stood at Triple H with his bat. Eventually he jabbed Triple H in the gut with it. It was boring and empty. Sting did a Scorpion Lock as a backbreaker before leaving to go home with more money for his appearance with no words or importance, just like Survivor Series. Yawn.
Nikki Bella (c) w/ Brie Bella Vs Paige
Paige scrambled into Nikki as per usual ending in a run around scuffle on the floor. The crowd were regarded by fans watching at home as boring or cheap and easy for WWE's friendly people. Though the crowd were insanely silent for this one. Nikki took the lead with a chin lock as is often the procedure for WWE's dishonourable people. A close two fall afterwards from Nikki with a hard backdrop to the floor of Paige full body first. That was okay. Paige did the traditional same old routine of three mini clotheslines on the spot before screaming. It was uneventful and sad.
Paige was talking to Nikki in the match saying "Come on Nikki" as guidance to wait for Bella to walk into spots with Paige, who failed to lead the match. Nikki Bella held a beautiful Sunset Flip from the corner and slammed Paige down perfectly. She got a close two count. Paige then randomly locked in the leg lock twist on Nikki which was ineffective. Nikki managed to make a rope break. Nikki Bella secured the Divas title after shoving Paige into the turnbuckle pad and rolled up straight-after. It was pretty cheap and tacky, but all Paige matches seem to be so. She had no place in title matches any longer. Even on the short stack, Paige has no depth.
WWE gave an even more hilarious after showing. They installed a camera in the turnbuckle! Lol. A turnbuckle cam.
We were also treated to the latest feature article of Muscle and Fitness Magazine where WWE CEO Mr. McMahon was on the cover showing off his impressive physique. Show off.
Bad News Barrett (c) Vs Dean Ambrose
Barrett began the match with a regular lock up as he so often does. WWE are really phoning it in, huh? Barrett was given offense early int he match with heavy boot-legging kicks to Ambrose which wear cushioned and tame touching but laced the bout together for the start. Ambrose recovered with a DDT counter to buy some time.
After some swift covers and counters which were okay, Ambrose continually relied on the 'almost tipped out of the ring but bounced back on the second rope comeback' spot too much taking away some legitimacy. Dean Ambrose would not stop attacking Bad News Barrett when he was down in the corner. The referee disqualified Ambrose for his actions meaning Barrett retains the gold. Ambrose then absurdly held the IC title in front of Barrett and said it was his. Why do that after an intentional DQ? Ridiculous. Ambrose then left with the title which made it all the more so poor and laughable.
All of a sudden the lights dimmed to a purple haze as the druids came out to the eerie Undertaker lullaby music. Then came the gong. Taker's music played. A casket was wheeled out to the arena. From the casket comes... Bray Wyatt!
After expressing his concerns, Wyatt challenged The Undertaker to a match at Wrestlemania. This is why 'Taker lost last year at 'Mania to Brock. Because he did not want to lose to the rip off version of the budget Undertaker in WWE, Sting. WWE would likely have done that if it wasn't Lesnar. Undertaker respected the business enough to realise a loss to Sting would have tarnished all of WWE and Undertaker fans' legacy. If they kept it unbroken till now, it could have made Wyatt. Though Undertaker losing to Wyatt is questionable but probable as it finally gives a new guy a chance. We shall see later.
United States Championship
John Cena Vs Rusev (c) w/ Lana
Rusev vowed he would "Crush!" John Cena. The pair went for a test of strength initiated by Rusev as Cena avoided and tired to kick and punch instead. Cena hopped around on the spot like a boxing Kanagaroo. He then scored a cheap shot punch at Rusev's face and made a colossal miss in a mega botch that looked plainly pathetic. Not two minutes in, with Cena in the corner, the crowd chanted "Let's Go Cena/Cena Sucks!" Everytime Cena has a chance he ruins it for himself. Its always in the start of his matches too. Does he ever watch them back?
Rusev charged Cena off the ropes as Cena tapped his body to Rusev and jumped off, ruining the believably of the bash. Cena landed a magical dropkick out of nowhere bbut Rusev followed up with his own. Reckless Cena on a comeback almost pulled Rusev's pants down trying to pull himself up. That was plain idiotic.
Rusev retained control with elbow drops and ground control. Cena was seen and heard talking the spots as usual but almost snared the title on a DDT for two. Lana encouraged Rusev. "Come on!" Rusev returned to dominance soon after.
Rusev went to punch Cena who comically blocked it with ease and threw a limp club back. Cena did some more to take control with a five knuckle fall. Rusev recovered and mule kicked Cena in the mouche for a near three fall.
Rusev easily stepped over Cena to give him an easy chance to get the leg lock but failed and was slammed with a whirl sideslam by Rusev instead. Cena got a magical DDT counter from above out of nowhere once more for a close count. It looked silly.
Cena did a bundle of timed punches at Rusev which were extremely slow motion comedy meaning to be serious. Rusev was then locked into a STF submission by Cena which looked insanely weak. At any camera angle, Cena makes it pale and tepid as a serious submission. Rusev was ready to "Cruuuusssshhh!" Cena caught Rusev's leg in an easy foot in front trample to catch on for another no pressure STF hold. Rusev looked more like a sweet teddy bear than an bulging brute. Rusev managed to reach the rope to get free.
Cena grabbed Rusev as he ran into an Attitude Adjustment and missed. Rusev countered as Cena grabbed a new AA and landed it for a close two fall. Rusev made the AA look good and Cena again ruined it with a jumpy pin cover in stupid fashion.
Cena missed a turnbuckle jump as Rusev pounced with the Accolyde. This looked intense. Cena made his stupid goofy bulging eyes and gritted teeth which is plainly laughable. Cena then lifted Rusev up as Lana stepped in, distracting the referee. Rusev nabbed a kick as a low blow to reapply the Accolyde on John Cena. Cena was then passed out from the intense submission as Rusev retained the United States championship. Lana was overjoyed and elated with gleeful cheer. Don't worry, Cena will win it back in 34 days. Cena then refused help and walked out of the arena, after waking up, not in pain at all.
No.1 contendership to WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Roman Reigns Vs Daniel Bryan
The winner of this one will get the chance to battle ‘The Beast’ Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania in a roughly months’ time. After winning the Royal Rumble in a weak and unsatisfying victory of non-importance, Reigns was convinced to challenge Bryan tonight. Were WWE listening to the fans? Or was it a measure to protect and build up Reigns as strong despite a neglect in fan appreciation? Either way WWE did not want another Batistagate circa 2014 on their hands.
The pair began with a lock up, the third of the evening, starting a match. The pair tried a test of strength as Bryan got the upper start with a headlock. Reigns powered out instead following with a hard knock down to the mat of Bryan. Fans in the arena did not like that.
Bryan came back with a smooth try of a Mexican Surfboard, blocked by a shriek and push off of Reigns with his powerful feet. 'Kay. Reigns regained control with a good sidewalk slam and clothesline to the outside. Reigns bashed Bryan into the outside barricade. Bryan locked in a cool inverted side twist leg lock. It was a short try as Reigns punched with ferocious yells. Bryan followed up with his kicks. A fan let out a "boo!" in the sound of a moaning sheep for a comical moment as Reigns attempted a comeback.
It was a fair match which at east was equal for both men and hard for fans to call the outcome. Reigns did a running jump up feet dropkick to Bryan from the outside of the ring when Bryan was draped over it. Reigns failed a follow up Superman punch with a great gut kick by Bryan. Bryan flew three running dropkicks into Reigns with anticipation from the crowd. Bryan was in a precarious position caught up the top of the turnbuckle as Reigns hoisted Bryan up for a mega Powerbomb pin at a close two.
Bryan was slapped for six by Reigns after on the other top post but Bryan came back, leaving nothing in it between the two. Bryan flung a superplex with poise for a two. He followed with a YES! Lock. Reigns broke it at the ropes. Bryan flung himself to the outside on Reigns twice to slow him down. Third times a charm until Bryan was caught and German suplexed outside. Reigns went for a damning Spear only for Bryan to move and shove Reigns into the steel steps for extra time. Bryan made the count as Reigns just jumped in at near ten.
Bryan jumped from the top to be punched in the jaw by Reigns coming down. Bryan quickly kicked out at two though. As the Boo man continued, Reigns howled. Bryan got the better of Reigns with counters and huge dropkicks flooring Reigns for a tense two fall. Bryan smashed the YES! Kicks to crowd elation. The anticipation "Woooooo-h"'s missed as Reigns countered and the pair had a hot scuffle until Reigns was in Bryan's submission once more. Reigns simply turned around and broke free with ease to pummeled Bryan with fists. It made fans feel he was the John Cena clone again after such a decent chance at changing perceptions.
After more tense action between the two from Reigns dropping another sit down Powerbomb, Bryan nailed a kick in Reigns head. Roman Reigns waited for Daniel Bryan to run to him and ran a Spear into Bryan to get the win and go to Wrestlemania with a clear three fall victory.
The fans were vocally displeased. Others were seen leaving the arena instantly in disgust and disbelief. That didn't go well then. To be fair, both put in an expert match together, though most of it was held together by Bryan, even though Reigns added his own to the match. Though when Reigns is really up against it with Brock Lesnar, for the big one, will he be exposed or can he go the distance and give a believable match worthy of world class proportions? That is the pedestal WWE has put him on and now he will have to deliver. This, however was Reigns best match to date for a long while.
PPV Rating – 4/10
Men/Women of their matches – Seth Rollins, Goldust, Tyson Kidd, Nikki Bella, Dean Ambrose, Rusev, Daniel Bryan
Man/Woman of the PPV – Tyson Kidd
Replacing WWE’s annual Elimination Chamber PPV (because it was costing WWE too much money to store and lug around the Chamber itself) bred the new PPV instead. As a PPV, Fast Lane was dry and entered a rookie performance calibre. It did not look like a set of professional wrestlers at this point in time on a premier boosting card.
If Elimination Chamber stayed, it would have been the perfect time for Seth Rollins to feasibly cash-in and win the title from a beaten down Brock Lesnar to shock and drive prestige to the WWE title once more. This would also strengthen Brock’s position with intrigue and set Rollins on the path to a new and believable WWE future. This is also the problem addressed countless times. With no star names outside of John Cena, which audiences already lack faith in, WWE has failed to boost a new set of WWE stars. The results are this.
Daniel Bryan and Roman Reigns have been earmarked to the changed event at Wrestlemania to now include Bryan in a triple threat with Lesnar and Reigns. Used as a precaution to protect Reigns from a baying level of boos, this won’t change the decision on Reigns unless WWE really improves its selection process with justification. Though the decision is welcomed for Bryan to join ‘Mania with Lesnar, WWE need to book it strongly or risk losing it all. No-one is truly sold on Reigns ad a title victory for Roman will destroy him, the title and WWE’s fanbase for a future of believable outlook.
The tag match was a great display from all talented members of both teams. The girls outside also did their parts. Cesaro, as we continually know, is way underrated. WWE are giving him another chance with a tag effort which Cesaro is really boosting the linage of once more. Is their nothing he can’t do? While WWE are planning a tit race, it should have and could still break Cesaro from Kidd and send Cesaro to the big leagues. For that he will also need his first name back. Vince McMahon thought he would be stronger if he lost it. Since then, he has dipped down the card by WWE officials in charge. As the third best worker of 2014, and way over with crows, Cesaro should be put back into full throttle. He was much better when he had his first name. Plus this would really launch Kidd on the platform he now has in mid-level status, alongside troubled wife Natalya.
Gold and Stardust was rushed and was done quickly which was necessary to play out here. Neither seem to have any real staying power as a team and as singles it wasn’t fantastic and simply average. No-one cares either way about ignorant bum Cody Rhodes. Goldust, maybe, but not overly. The match was empty.
Flunkie diva Paige, who has had nothing less than bungled title reigns given to her under a popularity clause by Triple H only to fall flat with no direction. Nikki Bella wasn’t much to talk about, but tried to improve, which is admirable. Upgraded due to minor fan popularity cheering for a new call up as smarks knowing what they are talking about proved WWE’s inane implementation. Caving to fan luvvies, Paige has been a diabolical mess in the ring and has no real qualities to speak off. All because ‘she looked alright on NXT.’ NXT is not the main roster, it is a cheap rookie’s playground currently infested with a wide majority of ignorance. This does not look probable for the future of WWE, should Triple H keep caving into pet projects that will fail. Ignorant bedfellows Owens, Kalisto, Crowe and Finn Balor won’t be the future WWE are hoping for. Though Finn Balor, if he shows enough repentance may have a chance at making it. Sami Zayn? Meh. A stuntman is not really looking probable at this time. We will have to see on those ones. As for the others WWE should cut their losses instead of calling them up to the main roster only to then release them after public failures of trying to getting over. Release them now and invest in newer talent (which is out there) on their freed up salaries. Fans won’t stick by things rammed down their throats when completely inadequate or illegitimate. Do it now.
John Cena and Rusev battled it up to predictable set up the main collision at Wrestlemania. The match was decent from Rusev’s efforts, but once again, Cena (who we desperately wish to say something positive about) still lacks any opportunity to turn his work around. He is not bothered on improving and his over-animation is forever alienating and embarrassing. No-one, even opponent, can ever be taken seriously. Hey, if Big Show can improve, surely you can, if you can be bothered?
What is going on with the cursed Intercontinental title? Bad News Barrett, or Bore-ette, was continually tiresome. So much so that it now jeopardises the position of Dean Ambrose. After stunning work with Bray Wyatt over the last months, Ambrose is in trouble (as we previously touched on) of becoming washed out and a boring, plus one. Ambrose has chances to go somewhere for WWE, but these weak and pitiful opponents with lacking strength and lunacy preceding the Lunatic Fringe himself, the direction is becoming costly.
The six man hash-together was simply a bore. It was once again epically held together by the powerhouse of skill that is Seth Rollins. Everyone else was a bit part, though Kane and Big Show put in efforts to assist well. Rowan is a mess with no character. Ryback is a nothing man that should just get his pink slip. No-one will ever truly be interested in this neander-fool. Dolph Ziggler however tried to make something for himself realising his career is nearing its end. While a handful f fans who cheer for Ziggs under the prospect of change and doesn’t want to lose it by admitting eventual defeat, Ziggler is stale. There is no denying this. You can blame WWE creative all you like, Ziggler has had his opportunities and they have now passed him by. He is WWE’s stand-in but that isn’t really any better. He truly is a non-entity at this point and it is clear it will not develop. It may be time to drop this flagging donkey. This horse will not go to water.
For WWE the Fast Lane PPV was dry. No fertile seeds where planted and the weedy roots are too scared to be plucked. No risks where pushed and concepts outdated. Outside of John Cena, WWE are pushing hard for all three ex-Shield members. Though only one is capable of greater things while the other two are rushed with disastrous results. One did tell you of this beforehand but the failure to listen has now been projected. This isn't smugness, but failure to listen and understand delivers this to you now. Seth Rollins is the underrated heavyweight contender capable to go the distance. Dean Ambrose is tired out and stalled. As for Roman Reigns, the big guy is still stuck in first gear incapable of getting to second. With no new stars and a lack of skill on offer in action fans wish to see a part of their ‘attraction’ events is not enough to influence an ever changing, more diverse product. Once again, the future for WWE could be bleak. While they don’t wish to admit that ever be a possibility, it has already been so dumbed-down by fan perceptions that the show is risking it all as a company. A real risk would be to get those who can really boost the company the way it needs, able to work WITH one another than AGAINST them. This is crucial business advice. Belee ‘Dat! Sort it out or get left behind.
© Max Waltham 23rd February 2015
All Rights Reserved
All Rights Reserved