WWE Extreme Rules 2015
WWE presented it's seventh annual Extreme Rules pay per view live on Sunday 26th April 2015, live from the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois, Chicago. Would this finally be the start of WWE's change from a drastically pitiful Jan-Mar three month booking failure of all wannabe stars? Could it get its mid card in place and would it be able to deal with unforeseen events potentially marring the show? With Daniel Bryan injured and pulled from the card at the eleventh hour, could it still do well?
Lets take a look...
Chicago Street Fight
Dean Ambrose Vs Luke Harper
The PPV began with a crowd pandering hometown match-up with Lunatic Fringe Dean Ambrose using the Kendo Stick aggressively against opponent Luke Harper. An exciting start with a suplex on the chair followed with a corner swing DDT appealed. Then the match began to stall in the middle with Ambrose doing the same type of routine like a run through practice run. The flips and rope lunacy tried out in a different way to his credit, made Ambrose look slightly daft and inconsistent. Becoming a stereotype of his former self, Ambrose is starting to dip even more down the card by his repetitive actions, donated by WWE officials, of course. While Ambrose is trying to work with what he has been given, the star is becoming so cliché that he is in danger of becoming just another mid card jobber.
Too much of a lunatic, the fringe took it backstage to excite and get the PPV going. Their backstage exchanges were hit and miss, literally. They pushed a crate and threw a pole at Harper. Both were measures that should not have been so heavily misused on television to influence others. The crate exchange was a bad botch but the pair tried to make it decent.
Luke Harper had felt enough. He got into a car and began hijacking it. As Harper revved the engine, Ambrose dived through the passenger open window and Harper sped off. Damn! They had just left the arena and nowhere to be seen. They were gone. Ambrose and his joy riding ways eh? Never paying for taxi's and now this? Tsk.
After initially being manipulated easy with the start of the match heavily cheering, the Chicago crowd viciously boo now. Oh dear. Looks like WWE trolled you! HaHaHa! :(
Kiss Me Arse Match
Dolph Ziggler Vs Sheamus
Who thought this one up me wonders? The crowd were unimpressed at home and in attendance. It really did have no mileage.
Can you imagine Dolph Ziggler will win and then have to be embarrassed by showing his arse. Yeah, big win...
Sheamus, by the way, has returned, with a bright Orange mohawk and tied string beard chin braids looking like a male hen. Week's ago on Raw, fans agreed with "You look Stupid!" It's not a great look and has no credibility, even if Sheamus did need a change.
The match began going to the outside, as Sheamus controls the action. I am glad to see they have shaved instead of having a hairy crustacean in their arse cracks.
The action continued but was tepidly lethargic from Sheamus. Stand and clothesline downs were bland. A sleeperhold following added an ironic tone to the match. Tiresome.
There were messy elbows and running fists by Ziggler as Sheamus countered with a neckbreaker.
The comedy element continued. Well, it wasn't exactly The Princess and the Frog, was it?
After a short while of following up, Dolph Ziggler gained a quick one leg suplex roll up botch from a Fisherman's pin. It might have been better if it was intended to be one leg open pin instead. The quick count came as Sheamus was beaten by Dolph Ziggler in another cheap roll up victory in a nothing match that elevated no-one, including viewers live and worldwide.
Thank goodness Michael Cole did not kiss anymore toes and feet.
Sheamus now had to kiss Ziggles arse. After some shaking and teasing briefs down, to which the inept cameraman could not get any coverage of bare naked bottoms, due to WWE's intentions, the Irishman smacked Ziggler from behind with a low blow. How predictable. Sheamus then made a floored Ziggler have his face pressed into Sheamus' exposed backside and rubbed against him. Basically, a stinkface, then? So the concept, flawed as it was, had no-one willingly kiss as a result of the stipulation.
Can anyone say refund?
WWE Tag Team Championship
The New Day Vs Cesaro and Tyson Kidd (c) w/ Natalya
Well, wasn't this interesting? The New Day, as honourable men, were disliked upon entry. Antonio Cesaro and Tyson Kidd both were cheered with escort Natalya. They weren't supposed to be. Hmm.
Tyson and Kofi began the match well. Soon after the battle of the muscle boys began with Antonio Cesaro and Big E taking one another on. Xavier Woods was an impressive cheerleader at ringside. Cesaro caught the Bigster mid air and slammed him with a swift foot stomp to the gut. It was timeless, effortless and sheer powerful content. Why WWE fail to see the beauty on offer is perplexing. After some more interactions, Tyson Kidd came back into the game with a slip through of the legs underneath Big E to enter the ring and avoid a beat down by both New Day dudes. After knocking them outside, Tyson ran with a over the top rope dive onto all outside with impressive flight. Kidd has never been so over.
Kofi managed to get back inside with Cesaro, who went into beast mode. Cesaro continued his beefy prowess with an outstanding non-rope suplex over the ropes. Big E then returned with a damning spear to Kidd knocking him off to the outside of the ring.
Cesaro got flipped over by a New Day double team outside too. Kidd was picked on but Cesaro regained to save his partner on a close pinfall. Kofi was caught into the Sharpshooter by Tyson. Big E saved the day with a suplex, but failed to notice Cesaro get a tag to qucikly uppercut Big E handsomely.
Cesaro made quick work of Kofi and swiftly put him into a Cesaro Swing to high elation from the crowd as Kidd dropkicked Kofi whilst in the swing to cover for a close two fall. This was extremely impressive from all. The Kofi Swing tore the house down.
Xavier Woods distracted Cesaro with some preaching from outside. Natalya made her way to him and gave him a slap across the face to quieten him. The crowd loved it. Amid the confusion Big E took down Tyson Kidd to the outside as Cesaro was quickly rolled up by Kofi Kingston, as The New Day seized it to become the WWE Tag Team Champions. Even after success, they could not encourage crowd favour.
Chicago Street Fight (Part 2)
Dean Ambrose Vs Luke Harper
Harper and Ambrose return from their ride to re-start their match. By this point the magic had been lost, despite the attempt to make the PPV interesting with a here and there segment. Dean Ambrose slams Luke Harper over onto a chair and wins. *sigh*
United States Champpionship
John Cena (c) Vs Rusev w/ Lana
What's a Russian Chain Match? You have to drag them to all four corners and touch the corner post light panels to win. Oh, so it's a Bullrope Match then? No, its not, its, erm, not.
Cena started doing the 2003 smackdown arm/face/punch posing stance to look all hard and serious as a fighter. Oh dear. It looked pathetic and highly unconvincing. It was embarrassing.
Cena adds more lunacy by pretending to comically strain at the start holding the chain with Rusev at the other end. *Insert your LOL's here.*
Rusev charged him down. A tug of tug Cena up the ropes with chain followed. Rusev continued to impress with some Muay Thai kicks. His mule hind legs and beefy badass were fantastic improvements. A suplex to Cena came after. Cena gets up with ease ruining all of Rusev's hard work to get both of them over again. Does Cena even care anymore? Every knock down is simply unrealistic and lacks belief. Cena is the root cause of WWE's tv program problems. No sells all over.
Rusev locks his legs on the rope pulling to stop Cena stretching to the light pedestals. Lights off. A spinning heel kick from Rusev was a perfect follow up. Rusev's top rop attempt was foiled as Cena yanks him off so stupidly, lacking any real effort. A running superkick to Cena gave Rusev another advantage.
Rusev was annoyed that the audience were adoring the lovely Lana with chants, and howled at her to go to the back and wiat int heir dressing room. Jealous of fans Rusev was. You fans just ruined it for yourselves losing Lana's legs. Too bad.
Cena capitalised with the Attitude Adjustment. At least there were no visible gapping issues, but Cena was so focused on this that he failed to focus on the move. He just doesn't have any in-ring psychology of how routine goes. It isn't as simple as one move, one move, one move, dear.
His comeback was stopped by the monstrous power of Rusev. The Accolade crush was prevented by a Cena reversal into another AA. At least this time he tried to make it look authentic for once. Alas, once more it was simply unbelievable with the rest of the match being untidy and sloppy on Cena's part at having any real power as a finisher.
Rusev nailed a jumping gut kick to Cena so smoothly. He then locked the Accolade in.
SuperCena lifted out of the submission as Rusev sits atop Cena in hold. Cena bumped Rusev into two corners. He then yanked and AA'ed Rusev. The lights were on for far too long than they usually would have been beforehand and Cena was again out of time. Sloppy.
Both had three lights on each. They had a stare down. Rusev made a mistake and charged for the post as Cena AA flipped his foe over. John Cena easily touches the pad in no effort at all to light it up and win a pointless match-up which had high potential.
WWE Divas Championship
Nikki Bella (c) w/ Brie Bella Vs Naomi
Naomi was looking funky fresh with green and black attire, This is a very good look for her, with trenchcoat to boot. She looked slick, fresh and motivated, which was a breath of fresh air to the divas division after months of inconsistencies.
The pair started with a traditional lock up. A snapmare fling over by Nikki Bella. A bit of stalled moments after but the match and the gals recovered well into an arm lock with Nikki's full leg scissors. Naomi's headlocks were decent. She missed her backstage Starjump Thump. She managed to get back in it though soon enough. Naomi took some jabs at Nikki but was looking a little tired now. A jump down and boot of Brie out of the way now for checking on sister Nikki. By the way, the Bella's are magically all kind again and Naomi is naughty.
A close two fall comeback. Close fall for Naomi who got annoyed. Her wonderful starpress Moonsault missed. Nikki knees Naomi in the face after getting the advantage for a close two count. The Rack Attack missed but Nikki followed up with a strong Nikki Buster, equally impressively reversed into a bridge by Naomi's great flexibility.
Nikki returned with a jump up enziguri from the top rope to Naomi for another close two fall.
Brie returned her rough justice with a kick to Naomi's face, with made her giddy. Nikki Bella grabbed up Naomi into the Rack Attack for a powerful three fall smashing victory. While it wasn't amazeballs from the past diva standards, this was a real strong development and great match of interest held up by both divas. They should be very proud of that battle. They certainly stood out, for all the right reasons, too.
Lana was shouted out backstage by Rusev, who was still upset. She then went into The Authority's office, which also now bears the red lion symbol. Good old spot of Orienteering. Lion, the emblem of the British. Red, and authoritative on a black and white fusion. Who could it possibly resemble?
Last Man Standing
Roman Reigns vs Big Show
Big Show was angry and demonstrated it early when he clubbed his hands through a set-up table at ringside breaking it in half. Ooh, scary. What a waste of a perfectly good table, dear. Reigns uses the Kendo Stick on Show lots. Show retaliates with a shove into the post of Reigns. Reigns managed to return from this soon enough with more use of the chair on the back of Big Show. He dropped a DDT of Show on it. Show made it to a confident seven count. Reigns gets another table from under the ring and another. Over concnetrated on the additions, Reigns stepped back into the ring and walks into the Knockout Punch. Oof!
Big Show sets the table and growls or howls. Reigns countered and dropped Show through the table instead. Both were down on a power charge moment. Reigns got up at six as Show rolls to the outside on both feet at eight.
Upon regained stride Show runs at Reigns, but manages to stop running into table steadily. Show quickly changed the pace and speared Reigns down well.
Ain't what they used to be, this is one move, down,count. Sometimes you needed lots of work to wait for a count in Last Man Standing bouts, but it still had something level about it.
Show dropped down on Reigns with a turnbuckle drop squash. It looked a tad uncomfortable but decent to incorporate. Show climbs to top again as Reigns knocks him down on his goolies. Show screams in pain with no sympathy from the crowd. Ooooooh!We feel ya biggie!
Reigns gets more tables stacked outside together, side by side. Hmmm. I wonder...
Show hurls Reigns over the inside of the ring from the rope top after cooling down but Reigns comes back with strong scoop slam. Reigns whacks the Superman Punch as Show wobbles. Another whack. Third was then missed as Show powerfully grabs Reigns with a chokeslam and perfectly launches him over the ropes smashing him into the tables outside. Damn! That was good. Reigns makes it to a close count at 9. Many thought Big Show had nabbed this one. It was a close call. Some were then rooting for Show.
Show dismantles the steel steps. He re-stacks them by Jerry Lawler at ringside. The wise announcers move. Show dismantles the main announce table. Phew! The Spaniards are getting a well earned break. Show is by the diagonal corner table mocking Reigns and goes for the smash but Reigns jumps out of the way as Show face plants himself through the wooden table smoothly.
Big Show really has improved dramatically. He makes it to 9.
Reigns runs like mad around the ring outside and spear launches through Show at the collapsible barricade, sending both ploughing through it. Reigns climbs the steps as Show throat catches him. The pair stand on the table atop. Oh no... Reigns barged himself off. Reigns jumps up on the steps to running Spear the Big Show through the Spanish announce table! Yeowers! Reigns then tips the table over, trapping Big Show beneath it for good measure. Hurt and unable to break free, Roman Reigns is the Last Man Standing.
Randy Orton and Kane chat backstage as Orton reminds Kane of what he once was, adding some seeds of doubt.
Bo Dallas returned to the ring and trashed the audience about them not showering. Really? A shower? He asked them to kindly "Shut your mouth" and hoped you chose to Bo-lieve. He was interrupted by meathead jobber Ryback, who still hasn't gained a personality. Or relevance. Fire Him.
Rusev was interviewed by Byron Saxton. Lana informs us its the final Cena/Rusev chapter at Payback after speaking with The Authority on Rusev's behalf. It's an "I Quit!"match too.
WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Randy Orton Vs Seth Rollins.(c) w/ J and J Security
- The RKO is banned
Over the week's building up to it, Seth Rollins won a stipulation battle allowing Rollins to choose to stop Orton using his RKO manoeuvre. Randy picked a Steel Cage, to shut out The Authority instead.
Kane was installed as the official gatekeeper. The what? Doorman, basically. He'll open and close it for one of the competitors trying to break free in the match to win.
Rollins tried to escape the door and missed. Good over body punches by Rollins who then climbed, caught by Orton. A running twist neckbreaker by Seth Rollins was next. The pace was already electric. A running miss cage bounce of Rollins came after with a strong following back mule kick. Reversal by Randy into the Cage stalled Rollins. Orton used heavy powerslams. Seth eventually got the upper hand and began another climb, once again caught. The tension was immense as Orton caught him on top of the cage. It was a great birds eye view of Orton from below.
Jumping knee off the cage by Rollins to Orton allowed Seth another climb over the other side of the cage. He reaches the top. Jump into powerslam Rollins and Orton go to the floor hard. A two fall only. A smack in the jaw kick gives Seth a two fall by.
Rollins returns to the top of the cage. Orton grabs Rollins who dangles over the outside of the cage. Such tension. If he drops he wins. J and J Security try to help pull Seth Rollins out. Orton's sheer strength pulls Seth back in and superplexes him back down. A smooth and close two fall by Orton.
J and J tell Kane to open the door. He refuses. Both then decide to climb opposite sided but Orton whacks Rollins into them from inside the cage knocking them off the walls. The DDT rope drop was countered by Seth. He climbed again. He was then dropped onto his goolies on the rope. Ooooooh! We really feel you Sethie! If ever we can help you, let us know. Orton walks to the door. Wide open, he refuses to escape the door. He drops the devastating middle rope DDT on Rollins. Orton readies himself for what would be the RKO. He stamps his hands and feet and nails the Pedigree in a mock to The Authority, mainly Triple H. Rollins amazingly kicks out with tenacity at two.
The action heated up fast. The punt was missed. A dropkick Enziguri counter kept Rollins in the lead. Kane opens door as Rollins crawls to it. Orton gets him before he leaves and delivers a harsh backbreaker to Seth. Orton refuses the open door, only to then leave. Kane slams the door in Orton's face as Orton is blocked. Kane decides to enter the doorway. Rollins charges at Randy and misses Orton knocking Kane out through the cage. With no doorman and the cage open, Orton stops Rollins scrambling the open door as a frustrated Kane returns and furiously smacks the door at both of them in anger.
Kane and J and J Security join the ring. J and J stop Kane going towards Rollins, as Kane responds with a double chokeslam on Noble and Mercury instead. Kane nears Seth Rollins with a chokeslam grasp. He then grabs Randy up from the ground, lifting him up and slams him down instead. Rollins plans to escape the cage as Kane chokeslams Seth aswell! The rampaging monster may be back.
Kane places Seth Rollins' hand over Randy Orton who shockingly manages to kick out. Randy RKO's Kane with the forbidden move. Seth Rollins then RKO's Randy Orton and scrambles out of the open door to retain the WWE World Heavyweight Championship in a fast paced, exciting match up of pure joy and skill.
PPV Rating - 9/10
Men/Women of their matches - Dean Ambrose, Dolph Ziggler, Antonio Cesaro, Naomi, Big Show, Seth Rollins
Man/Woman of the PPV - Naomi
Ignorant D- player Daniel Bryan was quickly removed from the PPV after his injury took a more necessary concern. Bryan, as Intercontinental Champion, would not defend the title and was not stripped either. Looks like the curse of the IC title struck again. Ignorance is not a profitable measure under any circumstance. At least Daniel can do interviews before mega PPV's and read lots of magazines now. Furry Sidelined Man. Karma is a pain and Mother Nature has my back, not yours. Ignorance will catch up with everyone eventually. It is truly how you hold yourself. Let's face it, Bryan wasn't going to be anything more of a success after reaching his peak and becoming injury prone on a consistent basis. As for the IC title, it clearly should have been stripped and WWE ae going to go through this whole drawn out process once again where it fails to strip instantly because a performer cannot perform and eventually will have no choice but to lose it. Then it will be too late and ruin the next champion in transit.
Naomi became a true revelation. Though we would have liked Emma to be put in line for the Diva's line-up, and she still can be, Naomi was a breath of fresh air. WWE should put all three or even four with Brie in the mix, to get the program going over the next few months. Naomi was not only improved and dominant, but really elevated the division to new prospects. Nikki and Brie played their parts effectively too and allow Naomi the vital dominance on show. Nikki understood the need to build her opponent as equal instead of previous, lacking competition. It was a very strong boost to get the scene back on track. All should be pleased. Well done ladies.
Antonio Cesaro was a powerhouse and worked fantastically with his nimble partner Tyson Kidd. It was not a true shock to see their titles drop, but the effective and super hot bout that they handled was what made it highly entertaining. The technical skill, agility and power involved made the tag team division have some encouragement among fans. Kofi was working very well and while Big E still needs a much more interesting place, he worked well within the battle. Not too much and not too little. This actually helped him to come across more effective overall. The hope now is that WWE could possibly recruit Kidd with a new partner as Cesaro moves onward with a main event hovering high. WWE are dropping the ball on him big time. He has the size, the belief, tenacity, consistency and crowd backing. Barely anyone on the roster has one of those, let alone all. WWE desperately want the requirements and have them, so why is it stalling? Oh and he will need his forename back. Losing it did not make him more powerful, if anything, he was on top of his game, and WWE's, when full titled. Without, he was stalling by WWE management. Get over personal disputes and move forward. This guy has the goods and everyone wants it. WWE would succeed tenfold and can have Orton, Rollins, Reigns, Show, Rusev and Cesaro around the main event hovering build up if they wish. You don't have to win to be high on the list and maintained as a prospect. Plus WWE are short on numbers.
Big Show has grown in leaps and bounds. What a guy. After the helpful advice and listening to how to change for the better Big Show is really becoming a competent and credible challenger once more. It is encouraging to see that anyone can develop if they put their mind too it. For the record, it looks like Big Show has also lost some weight, looks great and is still developing wholesomely. On paper the match booking may have seemed less than to be desired but the match was a stunning battle that really boosted all and gave such strong options for the future. It is really impressive.
Dolph Ziggler and Sheamus' 'thing' was beyond awful. The concept was flawed as no one willingly kissed, which was WWE's principal of he match. To tease extra interest with a bit of fleshy bottoms on offer, it was as lacklustre as it comes. Plus the camera's picked up no imagery of the booty. If it was two other stars it might have been much more interesting. It did nothing for either star or the viewers.
Dean Ambrose is struggling to connect in the sense that he is becoming typecast. He might get the cheap "Yay" moment but as a character and a routine it is also becoming stale and boring. Eventually fans could turn off completely from him. A once probable star in the ranks, alongside Luke Harper, no less, Ambrose doesn't seem to have anything to his core. What is his purpose and why is he always fighting people as a lunatic? There is no sense and his battles mean nothing. Continuing on this path will lose Ambrose a lot of potential for a future with WWE. Harper on the other hand is a growing star that keeps dipping up and down. Have WWE got a problem with him as rumoured? Whatever the case, Harper can contribute to some area's but others he must find that inner part to overall acceptance.
Without Daniel Bryan on the card and John Cena away from the main event, WWE is growing at a more rapid and exciting rate. Getting itself back on track is still a long way to go, but the card tonight proved exceptional. Everyone on the card put in a tremendous effort and made it as different and engaging as possible, despite the comedy match, of course. They didn't even use all of their stock. Fandango, Curtis Axel an Damien Sandow are still extras that WWE can use beneficially to make a more compact selection of diversity. Tonight WWE removed the boredom and pushed the stardom. Tonight, it won. Why can't it always figure out how to push the right people, where necessary? This is vital to a future let alone a business in pro wrestling.
© Max Waltham 29th April 2015
All Rights Reserved