Sunday, April 29, 2012

WWE Extreme Rules 2012-4/29/2012

Randy Orton v. Kane-Falls Count Anywhere-This match ended up better than expected and way better than Mania.  In the beginning, they fought in the fans and circled the arena and then, they fought in the back and came back out.  Kane hit a nice running dropkick in the crowd onto a prone Orton and Orton later nailed a standing dropkick of his own by the entrance.  Orton hit his DDT with Kane on the announce table draping off.  Kane went for a tombstone onto a chair but this was countered into an RKO for the win.  This match had good heat and being the opener, it should.  **

Lauranaitis and Eve are in the back with the roulette wheel gimmick behind them.  Eve made Teddy Long come out with champagne to celebrate the change in the WWE that has been spreading by Ace.  However, his phone rang and it was Triple H and he left to talk with him privately.

Brodus Clay v. Dolph Ziggler-Dolph got a good face reaction from the Chicago crowd.  He was on top most of the match and didn't really bump around too much for Clay until his comeback.  Clay hit his headbutt and Ziggler went flying and then, Brodus hit the splash for the win.  Nothing match.  *

Big Show v. Cody Rhodes-Tables Match-This was explained that during the Youtube preshow, the roulette wheel was spun and it landed on a tables match for the stipulation.  Show dominated but Rhodes got in some tiny offense including a Disaster Kick after springing off a table set-up in the corner.  Show was outside coming back in and Rhodes dropkicked him in the leg and Show's foot went through a table outside and Cody won.  Show was angry and destroyed Cody afterwards, sending him through two tables and came off like a poor sport.  This was a total burial of Cody and it's no wonder the guy isn't taken seriously.  Shit match and nothing to it and it didn't put Cody over in the slightest.  *

Striker interviewed Daniel Bryan and asked him what his advantages were compared to Sheamus.  He started by saying he got more chicks and his beard was way better and that he had all the advantages.  He asked himself if he'd become champ for a second time and he replied yes.  AJ was looking on afterwards.

Daniel Bryan v. Sheamus-2 out of 3 Falls Match-This was a pretty good match with great heat for DB and some booing for Sheamus.  DB tried to outwrestle Sheamus and succeeded and even did his I have until 5 bit.  Bryan went for a top rope rana but it was blocked and then Sheamus hit a battering ram.  Sheamus later went shoulder first into the pole and Bryan started going after the arm/should and this was the story for the rest of the match as Bryan kept working it over and going after it.  Bryan got crazy and kept kicking Sheamus in the shoulder and didn't break after the ref's count and got disqualified for the first fall.  Immediately, Bryan put on the Yes lock and had it in for a good amount of time before the ref called for the bell.  Doctors came in and checked on Sheamus but he said he wanted to continue.  Sheamus went for a superplex later that was blocked and then Bryan missed a headbutt.  Sheamus hit his comeback and hit the Brogue Kick for the win and he got a soft reaction for the win.  The crowd was so into Bryan the whole match and there were even dueling yes/no chants throughout the match.  Pretty good match here and it was given good time.  ***3/4

Ryback v. Aaron Relic/Jay Hatton-These two did a promo about how two is greater than one but they still got demolished.  The crowd was chanting Goldberg a lot and Ryback pinned both guys at the same time for the win.  *

Striker was back with Punk and Punk said he would prove he was the best in the world and that Jericho was going to wake up on Monday with a hangover from the GTS.

CM Punk v. Chris Jericho-Chicago Street Fight-Match of the night here and just a fantastic match with great heat.  They were both dressed in street clothes/jeans and ready to fight.  Punk's mom and sister were in the front-row and Jericho mid-match went and taunted them while Punk was down.  Punk was on the bottom at this point and Punk's sister slapped Jericho and he went to go after her but Punk went right after him.  Punk exploded after this and he even went for a piledriver on the floor but Jericho reversed it.  Jericho had control and the action was back in the ring and he went out and grabbed some beer and poured it all over Punk.  He went and got a second can and drank some but he got caught by Punk.  Punk went for the GTS but it was blocked into a Walls of Jericho attempt that was blocked.  Later, the GTS was blocked twice and Jericho finally hit the Walls and Punk got to the ropes.  However, the move did not have to be broken by Jericho.  Punk reached outside, under the ring, and grabbed a fire extinguisher and blasted it in Jericho's face to break it.  Punk put Jericho on an announce table and nailed his top-rope elbow.  He hit another elbow in the ring and got a two-count and put the Anaconda Vise right in after it.  Jericho grabbed a kendo stick and broke the hold and he hit the Codebreaker using a chair.  Jericho was in control and frustrated that he couldn't put it away.  He went for the GTS but it was countered by Punk into his GTS and Punk won.  After the match, Punk jumped into the crowd and celebrated.  Fantastic match here and it was even better than their Mania match and a great blow-off.  At least I assume it's the blow-off.  The final sprint was a great back and forth battle.  ****1/2

Eve, the Bellas, and Beth Phoenix were backstage and Beth said she still wanted to fight despite her injury.  Eve said she was not medically cleared and would not fight.  She said Nikki would still defend the belt against a surprise opponent and it wasn't Kharma and the Bellas were relieved.

Nikki Bella v. Layla-Divas Title-The Bellas both said before the match that Nikki would end up as the longest reigning Divas champ in history which meant she was losing.  Layla came out and had the match which really had no heat.  Nikki went after Layla's injured knee.  Layla hit a springboard crossbody but the Bellas ended up doing the switcheroo in the match and Brie came in.  Layla hit a neckbreaker and won the title.  *

Ace was in the back and Striker wanted to know what him and Triple H had to talk about and he said it would be discussed on Monday night.

Brock Lesnar v. John Cena-Extreme Rules Match-This was actually a good match with about the shittiest finish they could possibly come up with.  The WWE had one job to do with this match and that was to put over Brock.  Cena had more heat than Brock though, which has been the case throughout the whole buildup.  Cena ran right at Lesnar who took him down and hit some hard elbows which busted Cena open.  Lesnar dominated the entire match but Cena would bounce back and hit a move or two and then get shut back down.  The story was that Cena would not quit and kept coming at Brock.  Lesnar looked like a monster during this whole match until the finish.  The ref got hit at one point and another came out later.  Lesnar had Cena's chain and tied it around Cena's ankles and even tied him up onto one of the steel posts.  Lesnar nailed the F5 and hit the ref again.  Another ref came in and counted two and Brock destroyed him and more refs came out shortly after.  Brock brought in the steps and later, went flying off them at Cena and they both went over the top-rope.  Lesnar went souring here.  He tried again but Cena had the chain and punched him with it and Lesnar started bleeding.  Cena hit the AA on the steps and won.  Congratulations, Brock is no longer a draw.  Afterwards, Cena grabbed the mic and said he'd probably be going on vacation for a while but he was glad his wild ride ended in Chicago.  This was a great match and told a good story of how Cena kept fighting back and it had great heat but the finish was shit.  Lesnar needed to win this and now that he hasn't, he looks like any other guy on the roster.  My guess is he will probably only draw at Mania next year if the match is right.  I get that they were maybe setting up for a re-match here but Lesnar should have just won and Cena would take his break, and come back for vengeance.  Honestly, how much does Cena need to be protected?  Was one loss going to kill him?  The WWE really screwed up here with Lesnar so early and this shows how behind the times they really are.  ****

This show was just like Mania in that half the matches were great and the rest were shit.  I enjoyed it, despite the Brock/Cena finish.  Although, this has totally killed my interest in buying Lesnar matches.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Midwest Wrestling April 22, 2012 Review

The Midwest Wrestling show in Niles, OH was at the Niles Wellness Center and here's my review, forgive me if some of the names are incorrect though...

Drake Younger v. Michael Elgin-Seeing Elgin in person was nice as he's a big fella!  Younger came out before Elgin and made fun of some fans and said he would beat Elgin tonight.  He also told the fans that they were blessed to be able to watch him.  Drake attacked him early but Elgin stayed on top in the beginning.  Drake put Elgin over a lot as Elgin hit a huge vertical suplex and a bicycle kick.  At one point, Elgin hit a German suplex into the corner!  Drake hit some big moves too with a Tiger Driver and a Michinoku Driver, and the latter was the finish.  This was a pretty good opener and was quite competitive and Elgin carries himself well.

Irish Jack v. Mikey-Jack was doing a drunk Irish gimmick and Mikey was supposed to be like a small child and the crowd loved him.  Mikey worked from the bottom most of the time and hit his comeback but ended up missing a top-rope headbutt.  He did win when Jack had a sleeper on him but Mikey slammed him down.  As stated before, Mikey was a crowd-pleaser and was quite unique.

Eddie Graves v. Darin Corbin-This was entertaining for the crowd.  Graves was doing a rocker gimmick and both guys started an air guitar duel to "Living on a Prayer" by Bon Jovi, mid-match, and even the ref joined in.  Corbin must have a Randy Orton obsession as he did Orton's DDT and RKO, and also hit a sunset flip powerbomb of the top.  Graves kicked Corbin and pinned him in a soft finish. 

Sex Bobombs (Fitchett and Vega) v. Cornell/Gott-I thought this was match of the night.  Lots of fast action here as Vega hit a rana and Fitchett nailed a nice flying headscissors.  Cornell and Gott managed to isolate Fitchett, setting up the hot tag to Vega.  More good double team action came when Vega hit a codebreaker, held him there, and Fitchett stood on top of the guy's back and hit a moonsault.  Later Cornell and Gott tried something similar.  The finish was a double team set-up into a dropkick by Vega for the pin.

Justin Mane v. Gregory Iron-Mane came out and said he would show no mercy to Iron.  Mane carried himself well even though he gives off a Buff Bagwell vibe.  Early, Mane faked an arm injury and even got the refs to help him to the back as Iron followed, only to attack Iron and lead him back to the ring.  Mane was on top but Iron hit his comeback and hit a suicide dive to Mane.  However, Mane would win with a TKO.

Joey The Snake v. Austin Manixx-This was a pretty basic match and Joey seemed a little gassed by the end.  Joey hit a neckbreaker into a pin and held the tights for the win.

Gory v. Bobby Beverley v. ACH-Three Way Elimination-This was very fast in the beginning with lots of action, thanks to ACH but some of it felt like ballet.  ACH was the first to get eliminated by a head submission and the match got tighter after this.  Gory missed a big splash from the top and then, Bobby won with a powerslam.  This was probably the second best match of the night although I wasn't too into Gory.

Aaron Epic/Arik Cannon v. B.J. Whitmer/Rickey Shane Page-Tag Team Warfare-Early on, this was just brawling inside and outside.  Later, Page got isolated and the heels (Epic/Cannon) did all the usual tag team stuff building to a Whitmer hot tag.  Page managed a powerbomb into the corner but Epic was able to score the pin over Page.  This was a match where everyone seemed to blend in and nothing and no one stood out.

Overall, I thought it was a fun, enjoyable show but attendance seemed low.  I'm not really sure how they made any money off this show with around 50-60 in attendance but I hope they're able to continue promoting the product.  I did think that the first half was much better than the second half, especially that main event.  The whole event had great heat and the kids really enjoyed everything as they presented a good, traditional family show.  I'm not sure that anyone really came to see B.J. Whitmer even though he was put in a high spot on the card.  I recommend checking them out, if you're around the area.

Follow Midwest Wrestling on Twitter @MWESTWRESTLING and check out their site at 

Friday, April 13, 2012

EVOLVE 11 iPPV Review

This was my first EVOLVE show ever and I've been interested in seeing them for a long time.  Here's the review...

Super Smash Bros. v. Drew Gulak/Jake Manning w/Chuck Taylor-This was a pretty basic tag match with Player Uno being isolated a lot.  Dos got the tag and hit a crossbody and a springboard DDT.  Later, Uno hit a tope con hilo and the Smash Bros. hit the Fatality for the win.  Just a generic opener that didn't impress me much.  Taylor actually said afterwards that him and his team didn't care if they won tonight.  Great way to get people to care about your work.  *1/4

MK McKinnon v. Josh Alexander-McKinnon is from England and he had the advantage in the beginning.  He totally missed a springboard move as the pace was going pretty fast and after this, Alexander slowed stuff down.  Alexander hit a Northern Lights suplex with a bridge and then a vertical suplex.  McKinnon got him outside though and hit a tope con hilo but ultimately, Alexander won with a double underhook piledriver.  Nothing memorable from this match.  *1/2

Psycho Mike Rollins v. Ashley Sixx-Mike really won me over during this match as I like his gimmick and his mannerisms and I'd love to see him live.  Mike hit an airplane spin but Sixx later shined with a russian leg sweep outside into the side of the ring.  Mike had his comeback and hit a spinebuster and tried to go up top but this was countered into a rana by Sixx.  Mike got the win though with his Psycho Mike Driver, which was similar to the Greetings From Asbury Park.  Mike was very entertaining and reminded me a lot of Claudio/Antonio Cesaro.  Decent and fun match here.  **

Alex Reynolds v. John Silver-Silver is very short and he grunts a lot!  This match had a quick beginning with some back and forth high flying stuff.  Reynolds hit a standing shooting star press at one point but he missed a top-rope moonsault.  Silver had his comeback and went with a wheelbarrow suplex into a German suplex.  Reynolds won with a fisherman's suplex into a neckbreaker across his knee.  Personally, I hate the trend of guys dropping their opponents' heads across their knees like this and it seemed to happen three times tonight throughout the show.  I wouldn't want to take that move at all.  *3/4

Chuck Taylor v. Johnny Gargano v. Samuray Del Sol-This thing turned into a three-way when Gargano came out and asked for it.  The match was really fast and good in the beginning half until Del Sol was eliminated.  Taylor kept running from Gargano and they didn't touch for decent amount of the match.  Del Sol hit a bunch of great lucha stuff and his highlight was a running moonsault over the top rope onto the floor.  However, Taylor hit the La Mahistrol (is that spelled right?) and eliminated Del Sol.  It was down to Gargano and Taylor and the match wasn't as good after Del Sol was out.  Gargano can't sell well in submissions with his facials and Taylor is very dull, at least during this match.  Keep in mind though that this was only the second match I've seen of him.  Taylor got scoop slammed onto the hotel floor and it was probably pretty rough for him.  Taylor was in control after a back suplex outside onto the ring apron.  Later, Taylor missed a top-rope moonsault and Gargano hit a comeback.  The Gargano Escape submission was hooked in but was countered into a half-crab but this was broken by Gargano.  Taylor quickly hit another half-crab and won the match.  I had a tough time believing the finish and Gargano sold it like he was dead but it hardly looked painful.  I also question why EVOLVE didn't advertise Gargano being in this match seeing as how Taylor turned on him two weeks ago.  This was a pretty solid three-way though, in the end.  **3/4

Adam Page v. Caleb Konley w/Leah and Larry Dallas-Here goes The Scene but thankfully they were dumbed down from two weeks ago at the DGUSA PPV.  Page is a tobacco farmer and he looks the part.  Page managed to get a shooting star press off the apron to the outside and Konley hit a wheelbarrow into a lung blower too.  Konley won with his submission the O-Face.  Pretty boring match here.  *1/4

El Generico v. Low-Ki-Ki was the heel in this match and he tried to submit Generico on the ground at first.  He even tried the old Ali/Inoki thing where he tried to get Generico to take his legs and then, they did some MMA ground work stuff.  Ki would hit strikes and submissions on Generico for a few minutes and then Generico would explode with a comeback.  Ki was kicking him and Generico kept motioning for him to bring it.  Generico tried for the yakuza kick twice and missed but he nailed it on his third attempt.  He went for a top-rope brainbuster which was countered by Ki and Ki then hit a sick Warrior's Way onto Generico's back.  Very solid match here with the dynamic of Ki outwrestling Generico but Generico would hit some big moves on him in contrast.  After the match, Ki grabbed the mic and told Generico he wasn't as good as he thought he was, in a heelish manner.  ***1/4

Finlay v. Sami Callihan-Sami left a bad taste in my mouth after the $1.99 DGUSA show a couple weeks ago but this match was pretty good.  Finlay was on top almost the entire match as he would nail Callihan with everything and Callihan kept getting up and not stopping.  Finlay hit a sick headbutt on Sami who got busted open, early in the match.  Callihan would comeback every so often with a move or two but Finlay would always shut him down and then Sami would keep getting up absorbing the punishment.  Callihan nailed Finlay with a superkick to the hamstring of Finlay but he still couldn't gain control.  Finlay went for the Celtic Cross but Callihan kicked out and Finlay proceeded to hit two more and he still only got a two-count.  By this point, Finlay was frustrated.  He hit a tombstone and a lariat but couldn't finish Sami.  He tried for a second tombstone but it was countered into a boot by Callihan.  Finlay then hit his own boot and Callihan hit another and finally, they both hit two double boots in succession with both guys going down each time.  Finlay ended it with a cross arm breaker though.  Finlay was the veteran punishing Callihan, who kept coming and taking everything dished out to him and that was the story of the match.  This worked very well and was very solid and was match of the night.  ***1/4

This show was similar to WrestleMania XXVIII in regards to the fact that it had a bunch of junk matches and three pretty solid matches.  The commentating was way better than the DGUSA show in Miami and the show itself wasn't nearly as over the top.  The sound of the mic wasn't too good and I could hardly hear what any of the wrestlers were saying during interviews, etc.   I certainly prefer this to DGUSA, from what I've seen.  Hopefully, for their May shows, EVOLVE can keep booking good main events like this show.  Overall, the big matches were very solid and the rest, excluding the three-way, were forgettable.

Steve Viglio

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

How is Brock Lesnar doing?

Sorry I didn't get around to doing a RAW write-up last night.  I'm not sure I'm going to continue doing them in the future but nonetheless, I did see Brock Lesnar's stuff from RAW and I'd like to address how the WWE has handled him so far.  Brock Lesnar came back to the WWE as a superstar who is actually bigger than the WWE and the company needs to accentuate that fact.  He made a huge amount of money and got worldwide exposure for his UFC/MMA career and I don't think the WWE will be able to capitalize on that.

If you missed it last night, John Lauranaitis came out and introduced Brock and gave him a mic.  However, John Cena interrupted him and came into the ring and slapped Brock.  Lesnar then took him down and pounded on him with right hands including one to the face that busted Cena open.  The whole WWE locker room came out to separate them and failed a couple of times before finally succeeding.  Brock later gave an interview and in the end segment, attacked Cena again after his match with David Otunga.  Lauranaitis also announced Brock v. Cena at Extreme Rules.  This was an idea that I totally disagree with. 

Don't get me wrong, everything from last night was great with this program.  It was made to be a big deal and came across that way.  One of the things that made Brock so appealing in the UFC was that he did not fight 14 times a year and he was not on television at least twice a month, if not more.  He fought a couple times per year and he was very entertaining and appealing at those times.  I understand that once he signed to come back to the WWE that he would be on tv more than during his MMA career but I was at least hoping he would only fight once in a while.  Brock should only be wrestling on pay-per-view and never on RAW.  You have to make people realize that the only way they are going to see him fight is if they pay money.  You can't get away with that once or twice a month, however.  The WWE needs to book Brock like he is bigger than the WWE and putting his first match back on a B-PPV does not do that.

My theory as it pertains to major wrestlers returning is that there first match back will draw more buys than usual.  However, a figurative timer starts after this and the more appearances and matches that guy has diminishes his value.  This specifically happened with The Rock in the last year.  He got huge buzz in 2011 at WrestleMania XXVII for hosting the show and the WWE booked him for the 2012 WrestleMania right away.  The problem was that the WWE got two hasty and put his first match back earlier at Survivor Series 2011 in a meaningless tag team match.  This failed to produce huge numbers and it helped The Rock lose some of his luster and eventually he became just another WWE superstar on the roster.

That same thing is already happening with Brock by announcing his first match back this month instead of drawing it out and protecting the hell out of Brock's appearances.  He should not wrestle unless it is on a big PPV and it is made to be a big deal.  Extreme Rules is not a major PPV and I'd be surprised if this show does more than 300,000 buys worldwide.  Booking his first match back on this PPV is a big mistake and has already diminished his value.  The timer has started and every match he is in after this PPV will diminish his draw until WrestleMania.  When Goldberg came to the WWE in 2003 this very same thing happened and they are repeating history with Brock.  Brock's first match back should be able to produce huge numbers/buys but being done so fast, I don't think it will do huge numbers. 

The WWE needs to minimize his RAW appearances and what he does on those shows.  They need to protect him like they've never done before and they need to make sure he only wrestles a handful of times.  If they do this, they should be able to increase buys for every show he is on leading up to WrestleMania XXIX next year.  In reality, if they continue to book him so fast, he will become less and less special and he will eventually blend in with every other major WWE superstar, bringing PPV numbers back to normalcy. 

Monday, April 2, 2012

April 2, 2012 WWE RAW Review

This was a night of the WWE not giving fans what they wanted until the end.  It's back to normal after WrestleMania, so here we go...

The show starts with the all the RAW guys in a meeting with John Lauranaitis, who said he will use his new power to give the people what they want.  Punk interrupts and said they all considered him to be a giant toolbox.  Ace made a match for later: CM Punk v. Mark Henry for the WWE Title.  Lauranaitis used the term people power to describe his new powers as GM of both shows and this was the theme used all night by Cole.

The Rock came out to a huge ovation and he said he wanted to thank Cena for bringing it to the Rock like no one else has before.  They both made history and he thanked the people and said this was only the beginning.  He had a vision last night that he will become WWE Champion in the future.  Guess that means he'll be back.

Santino v. Jack Swagger v. Dolph Ziggler-US Title-This match was made by Ace in the opening segment.  This started off 2 on 1 until a pin attempt and then Ziggler and Swagger were at odds.  The finish was the cobra on Swagger.  Swagger, at one point, did a wheelbarrow on Santino in order for Ziggler to hit the rocker dropper.  Nothing match but afterwards, they went after Santino but he ran away up the ramp.  They chased after him but Brodus Clay stopped them.  Ziggler came running for him but Brodus hit his headbutt and Dolph went flying.  Then, Brodus' dancers came out and danced with Santino and Brodus.  Clay came across good here and it's the next step for his character to get out of those weekly squash matches.  *1/4

Lord Tensai w/Sakamoto v. Alex Riley-Sakamoto was Tensai's second and Tensai walked to the ring dressed like a samurai.  Tensai was described as a former WWE superstar who went to Japan and dominated there and now he's back to dominate the WWE.  They never acknowledged him as Albert or A-Train.  He used a lot of power moves and strikes.  Lots of YES chants and this was prevelent all night.  The finish was Tensai winning with his choke sit-out powerbomb.  After the match, he put the claw on Riley and it looked stupid.  The crowd was dead for this match.  *

CM Punk v. Mark Henry-WWE Title-This was the 10PM match and it was very enjoyable.  It was similar to the Henry/Cena match from a couple weeks ago but Punk kept getting hope spots that Henry kept shutting down.  Henry tried for a Vader Bomb and missed and then, Punk missed his springboard clothesline.  Punk hit two running knees in the corner and went for the bulldog but Henry held on to him and threw him outside and Punk got counted out.  This was a very fun little match that got some time too.  Afterwards, Henry did the World's Strongest Slam on the floor and Ace came out.  Johnny said that Punk was going to have to defend the title more often and Jericho came out through the crowd.  He said he was going to send Punk down the road to alcoholism just like his father.  He grabbed a bottle of liquor and poured it all over him and his head and face.  Jericho grabbed another bottle and smashed it over the back of Punk's head.  I liked this part and it felt dramatic.  Officials came down to help Punk.  The match was **1/2

Sheamus came out and before he could talk, Alberto Del Rio came out.  Huge Daniel Bryan chants and they were even booing Sheamus any time he talked or did anything.  Del Rio said Sheamus will lose the belt and that Lauranaitis agreed to give him a match with Sheamus on Smackdown and if he won he'd get a future shot at the title.  By this point, Del Rio's mic was giving out and Sheamus hit the Brogue Kick on him.  The fans were really shitting on this whole segment and on both guys.  They wanted to see Daniel Bryan and they did for a second.  Josh Matthews tried to interview him about his loss at Mania but he just stared at him and said nothing.  The crowd was hot for Bryan the entire night and that's all they gave to them.

Cody Rhodes v. Kofi Kingston-Nothing match and quick.  Big Show came out and showed pics of Cody's loss at Mania trying to embarrass him like how Cody did to him before.  This distracted Cody and Kofi hit Trouble in Paradise for the win.  *

Mark Henry and Abraham Washington were talking backstage.  Washington said that Henry needed a change and he wanted to represent him in the future.  He gave Henry a business card with AW initials on it.  The problem here was they never actually said who the guy was and I'm guessing no one remembered him at all from his time on Smackdown a while back.  We were supposed to already know who he was, I guess.

Eve came out and said she got her Mania moment and it was easy.  It's easy to manipulate any man except Ace and she said "let's hear it for people power."  That was the whole segment.  The crowd was hot for Ryder though during this.

The Miz v. Zack Ryder-Nothing match as Miz hit the Skull-Crushing Finale for the win.  Good heat for Ryder but they continue to bury him.  *

Cena came out to address the WWE Universe on his loss at Mania and he got huge heat.  He said we all take defeats in life, which was a quote from Ali.  There was speculation on how he'd react and if he would finally lash out against the WWE Universe.  He said he wouldn't.  He's a man and he admits defeat and if he let anyone down, he apologizes.  Lots of We Want Lesnar chants and some YES chants.  Cena went along with the YES chants and plugged Daniel Bryan on camera.  He called down The Rock because he has earned Cena's respect.  Brock Lesnar came out to a tremendous ovation, biggest of the night.  He came in, went to shake Cena's hand, and hit the F5 and the place was buzzing the whole time for Brock.

Bryan got a major reaction the entire night with lots of chants and he had just as much heat as The Rock did.  The crowd was hot for many things tonight but Bryan was probably #2 on the list right behind Brock.  The show as a whole decent except for the Henry/Punk match, the Jericho segment, and Lesnar coming out.  One gets the feeling that the WWE really doesn't understand what works in 2012 at all though when it comes to guys like Ryder and maybe Bryan.  Maybe it was just that crowd tonight but they need to experiment more with Bryan and keep that YES thing over everywhere.  Let's just hope they don't book Lesnar as a heel with Cena as a face.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

WrestleMania XXVIII Review

Daniel Bryan v. Sheamus-World Heavyweight Title-Bryan was pretty over tonight but as soon as the match began Sheamus hit the Brogue Kick and won in 28 seconds.  *

Team Johnny is in the back and The Miz tries to pump everyone up but they disregard him.  Lauranaitis comes in and says when his team wins it will be comparable to when Hulk slammed Andre and when Stone Cold wouldn't submit to the Sharpshooter at WM13.

Kane v. Orton-Not much to this match.  There was a Daniel Bryan chant though.  Kane had 3 different chinlocks on Orton.  Kane went up top and jumped but Orton countered with a dropkick.  Orton went for punt but Kane countered it into a chokeslam.  They ended up on the top rope and Randy looked like he was going for an RKO but Kane ended up hitting a top rope chokeslam for the win.  The finish was pretty decent.  *3/4

Santino, Captain Keith from Deadliest Catch, and Mick Foley are all at a table with crabs on their plates in front of them and they did a skit.  Foley pulled out Socko and Santino had the cobra and they ate until Ron Simmons came from behind and said damn.  This was sort of humerous, I thought.

Cody Rhodes v. The Big Show-Intercontinental Title-Cody needed this win but he didn't get it.  Cody got some offense in and hit his Disaster Kick.  He went for it again but Show countered with a spear and then he hit the WMD for the win.  No wonder no one takes Cody seriously when they don't give him a much needed singles win.  *1/2

They showed a Divas video.

Eve/Beth Phoenix v. Maria Menounos/Kelly Kelly-Daniel Bryan chants again.  Maria was on the bottom during most of her time in-ring but she didn't take any bumps or anything, just selling and her facials were horrible.  Maria got the win by rolling up Beth.  This match was terribly terrible.  *

Matt Striker interviewed Shawn Michaels and he came out to ref the next match.
Jim Ross was out to call this match.  Undertaker v. HHH-Hell in the Cell-Up until now, the night was horrible but this brightened up everything.  Taker had a great outfit and his haircut wasn't bad, just a mohawk.  HHH came out through a skull's mouth display on the stage.  The match started slow with a lot of brawling outside by Taker.  Taker did hit his apron legdrop on HHH and he used the steps on him and brought them in the ring.  HHH went for a Pedigree on the steps but Taker countered it.  However, HHH hit his spinebuster on the steps soon after but right away, Taker hit the Hell's Gate choke.  This was then countered by HHH with a powerbomb similar to the Silva/Rampage PRIDE fight a couple years ago.  HHH went for a chair and started laying into Taker heavily.  HBK finally got the chair away from him and he told him to cover him and end it.  HHH pushed HBK out of the way and grabbed the chair again.  HBK pleaded with Taker to stop the match but Taker said no, don't stop it.  HHH now went for the sledgehammer as he was telling HBK to end it.  He kept telling him this, by this point.  HHH aimed the sledgehammer as if to crush Taker's head like a watermelon but HBK pulled it away.  HHH still told HBK to end it and Shawn almost did but he hesitated and Taker put the Hell's Gate on HBK.  HHH saved him but Taker started fighting back.  He put the choke on HHH and he was passed out but HBK was still down.  Charles Robinson came running down and Taker hit a chokeslam but only got a two-count.  So, Taker grabbed Robinson and chokeslammed him.  He went for the tombstone which was reversed into HBK hitting the superkick on Taker.  HHH hit the Pedigree but only got a two and HBK couldn't believe.  After HBK was thrown out of the ring by HHH, Taker went on an assault and hit the tombstone but couldn't get him.  Both guys were down but they began to move, hitting each other on the way up.  They both battled back and forth and went for their finishers but both failed.  Taker went for the chair and HHH went for the sledge.  Taker beat him to the punch and stepped on the sledgehammer and he went to town with the chair.  HBK was pleading with Taker to stop and he even blocked a sledgehammer shot, grabbed it, and threw it out of the ring.  HHH is up but he knows he's done for and he gives Taker the crotch chop and Taker hit him with the sledge.  Taker pulled him up and tombstoned him for the win.  Taker had welts all over his back after this match.  HBK helped up Taker and they hugged and then they both helped up HHH and all three exited.  When they got to the top of the ramp they hugged.

This match was beyond epic and needs to be watched.  The drama was there, just like last year, but it was even better.  The story was great as HBK kept pleading with both guys to stop but they kept fighting.  The crowd reaction was simply amazing.  This was the most epic match ever in WrestleMania history and maybe even in WWE history.  *****

The Hall of Fame guys came out like they do every year, with intros from Howard Finkel.

They did a stupid Flo-Rida and Heath Slater segment where Slater got beat up.

Team Teddy v. Team Johnny-Everyone and their mother was out for this but no one cared until the very end.  Lauranaitis had an all white suit on with a red tie.  Lawler saw this and said his suit would give Brother Love a heart attack.  If Bruce Pritchard gets better from his heart attack, he might find that line funny.  The highlight of this match was Ryder, Kofi, and Truth hitting triple somersault planchas on Team Johnny.  In the end, Ryder was on fire and the crowd loved him.  He went for the Ruff Ryder on the Miz but was thrown over into Ziggler.  He went for the Broski Boot but Eve got in the ring and went for it too.  Ryder stopped to get her and Miz hit the Skull Crushing Finale for the win.  Afterwards, Eve kicked Ryder in the balls.  *1/2

CM Punk v. Chris Jericho-WWE Title-This was a solid little match but it lacked heat.  Punk's pop was soft and the crowd seemed to care more about Jericho throughout the match.  My guess is that the Taker/HHH match took a lot out of the crowd.  Before the match, Ace told Punk that if he got DQ'ed, he would lose the belt.  Jericho began by antagonizing Punk, trying to get him disqualified.  Punk went for a chair, and went to swing it at him but stopped.  This match had a ton of counters back and forth.  Jericho hit the codebreaker but Punk rolled out of the ring.  After Jericho got him back in, Punk hit the GTS but Jericho had his foot on the ropes.  Both men were up top and Punk went for a rana but Jericho countered it into the Walls of Jericho.  Later, Punk went for his springboard clothesline but Jericho countered it into the codebreaker.  The match was starting to get a little heat by now.  They countered a lot of moves in the finale with a lot of pin attempts but in the end, Punk slapped on the Anaconda Vise and won.  They made Punk look really good during this match.  The match didn't start really heating up until the last few minutes and it needed some heat but it was still pretty good and worth tracking down.  ****

Brodus Clay came out and told everyone to get their phones and call their mamas.  He called his and she said she was in the building and he told her to come out.  A woman with a dress, grey wig, and a butt pad came out and danced along with like twenty more similarly dressed dancers.  They all danced.

P. Diddy came out to intro MGK, who played his song for Cena.  Also, Flo-Rida came out and played his songs for The Rock.
John Cena v. The Rock-Tons of heat for this match, as expected.  This was your typical Mania, Hogan-esque match.  Cena dominated in the beginning and even had a bearhug on Rocky.  He went after his ribs which got injured from a table bodyslam outside.  Rock went for the elbow but failed and Cena went for the STF instead.  He hit the 5-knuckle shuffle but missed with the AA and they both hit clotheslines at the same time.  Cena hit an AA and got a two-count and then Rock hit the Rock Bottom for a two-count.  The crowd was mixed by this point.  Cena went up top and landed a sick rocker dropper and landed on Rock's back and neck.  His AA missed and Rock hit a spinebuster into a sharpshooter but Cena got to the ropes.  Rock put it on again and Cena broke the hold.  Later, Cena went for a sunset flip from the apron and nailed the STF out of it.  The Rock was still in it and nailed a spinebuster into the People's Elbow.  Cena then tried for a superplex but it was blocked and The Rock nailed a crossbody instead.  Cena rolled through, hoisted the Rock onto his shoulders, and hit the AA.  Now, Cena got cocky and tried for his own People's Elbow and he looked like a total douche doing it!  As he was running towards The Rock for the elbow, Rock was up and hit the Rock Bottom for the win.  Cena was upset that he lost and the crowd went home happy.  This was a pretty solid match and worth the wait.  It wasn't a show stealer or anything but it was pretty good.  One has to think The Rock will be back at some point since he won this one.  ***3/4

Overall, this Mania was a hell of a lot better than last year's with three pretty solid matches including that epic Taker/HHH match.  That is certainly a match of the year candidate.  The WWE came through with this one but they have to get people to care more about guys like Rhodes, Ziggler, and Punk, especially if they are the future of the company right now.  Although, like I said, the Punk reaction might be due to the Taker/HHH heat.