What you missed…
Dolph Ziggler and Sheamus vs. The Miz and Fandango – I was going to count the number of times Cole and JBL said “moneymaker”, but that would prove pointless. It’s a lot. The Miz and Fandango are certainly outgunned here, as Fandango’s manhood has been taken by Ziggler and Miz is far too preoccupied on protecting his visage. But hey, they have character motivations! Sheamus plays the face in peril while Cole and JBL debate and decide that Miz could beat such Hollywood tough guys like Don Knotts and Dudley Moore. Of course Miz can take them on. Maybe he should go after Big Show Sr. after he’s done with them. Ziggler and Sheamus run wild to finish this up. It’s a solid **1/2 match to kick this off. Worth noting is that Ziggler used a Rough Ryder on Miz to get a two count. So much for this renewed push.
Alicia Fox vs. Eva Marie w/Special Guest Referee Nikki Bella – To the surprise of no one, Alicia and Eva just beat up Nikki to further this storyline that no one cares about.
Chris Jericho vs. Luke Harper w/goons – Bray cuts a promo from his chair before the match that I can’t remember and doesn’t really matter. Harper dominates what could just be a damned good match. Jericho came to the ring sporting a bruise, but that makeup easily wore away as the match continued. Chris withstands some interference and defeats Harper with a schoolboy rollup. ***. The Usos run-in to save Jericho from the customary beatdown that follows the match.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Kofi Kingston – It was a solid encounter between the two **. Solid, that’s WWE in the ring. Del Rio took the win with a double stomp from the corner.
Layla and Summer Rae vs. AJ Lee and Paige – This was far too short, but fine for what it was trying to do in painting Paige and AJ Lee as “friends” that really hate each other. *. Furthermore, we were given what WWE needs to provide, and that is the resounding scowl from Paige towards AJ. This just led to a hug, though.
Dean Ambrose vs. Kane – Dean comes out with fresh wrap on his shoulder; so of course, Kane works on that for a while. I’d give it *1/2 before Seth Rollins runs down to deliver a beatdown to end the show. Dean takes the Curbstomp on the steel steps to end the show. The crowd chants for Roman Reigns, but he’s a big boy now that only appears in segments with Cena.
1. It’s not the best, but it’s something
I don’t have my source readily available. *shifts imaginary papers* However, people seem to be upset at the simplicity of the feud between The Miz and Sheamus, where Sheamus is just working up to kicking Miz in the face. We aren’t doing anything new here, but the payoff still exists. However, The Miz isn’t going to light it up in the ring where his character’s main motivation is to protect. That’s just fine with me as he’s back to his roots of playing a cowardly weasel that can bump around like a pinball.
2. D’lo Brown’s chest protector returns.
Chris Jericho was sporting a painted on bruise during Smackdown. This was due to taking a Sister Abigail on the ramp during Raw. However, for those that watched the show, Jericho landed safely on Bray’s chest. They don’t even replay the move in the question, as to show us what happened. Why bother with the damned mark on his face? If they’re looking for a way to give Jericho an excuse to lose to Harper, how about using the other two guys hanging around by the rocking chair?
3. The simple goodness of Swagger v. Rusev.
You have two guys who are not the best on the microphone acting as avatars for their managers. However, they can hit the high spots that hosses perform. So, you put the Russia/US things behind it, and you have a stew going. I do predict Zeb turning on Jack, however, and taking some Russian oil money to get his undying support.
4. This is how you Sonic.
The string of shoehorned product placement continues, with Hornswoggle and The Usos shilling slushes that look unappetizing because of their artificial nature. This latest stream of advertisements lack of the pizzazz of Santino stealing Subway sandwiches and being forced to retire after binging on Twisted Tea with Adam Rose.
5. We just can’t have these guys ruining everything!
With word out that Cesaro’s rise has been purposely halted due to WWE not being able to push two guys towards the main event at the same time, it’s not hard to leap to the sobering conclusion that Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose, while featured on television, are being cooled off for Sunday. Cena and Reigns were too busy striking poses with their steely blue eyes to try to save Ambrose from an extended assault, and Rollins had to work a knee injury to not factor into the trading of finishers at the end of Raw make this transparent.
Seth’s “injury” is also there to keep him from cashing in at Battleground, since it might just be time for Brock Lesnar. It’s going to look so silly when Seth Rollins is entirely forgotten once Lesnar is champion and Seth just walks around with a briefcase that he is not allowed to talk about, because God forbid you have Brock Lesnar interacting with more than two people at a time. A great way to strengthen a midcard and to give rising stars legitimacy is for them to have interactions with those mainstays. This would require consistent effort, and we can’t have this.