by Amish Patel - July 15, 2013
This was written live on Sunday night.
WWE Money in the Bank
July 14, 2013 (Twitter @johnreport)
The pre-show began with a panel of Josh Mathews, Big Show, Kofi Kingston and Vickie Guerrero. She was fired as Managing Supervisor of Raw, but not from PPV panels apparently. Two minutes into the pre-show they announced the tag title match was up next.
The announcers for the show are the usual trio of Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler & John Bradshaw Layfield. I like the look of the ring with the white ropes and the green ring posts. It’s all about the money colors. The set was full of ladders.
Tag Team Championship: Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins vs. The Usos
It’s easier to tell the Usos apart now because of their face paint. The crowd was chanting “RVD” early on. His pop is going to be huge. Good tag team work by the Usos early on. The Shield went to the floor and that led to a 60 second commercial promoting the PPV by telling us how we can order it. After that one minute break, The Usos remained in control until Reigns hit a nasty clothesline on the apron. They continued to work over Jey Uso in their corner. Reigns missed a corner charge around the ten minute mark. Rollins tripped up Jimmy Uso in the corner when Jey was about to make the tag. That was brilliant. Rollins hit a clothesline on Jey on the floor. There was another 60 minute commercial. Great two count for Jimmy after a cross body block. The crowd bought it. Running corner butt splash as a Rikishi tribute and then a Samoan Drop got another two count. Rollins wanted to give Jimmy a superplex, but Jey showed up and then Reigns showed up. They did a huge Tower of Doom spot with powerbombs and suplexes for all. The crowd popped big for it. Rollins got a two count. Superkick by Jimmy on Rollins and then a top rope splash. Reigns broke it up just before three. What a great nearfall that was. Reigns hit a Superman Punch to knock out Jey. “This is awesome” chant in the Kickoff Match! It is. Reigns made a blind tag and hit a Spear for the win for his team. It went 16 minutes.
Winners: Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins
Analysis: ***1/2 That’s one of the best pre-show matches I’ve ever seen. Usually they get about seven minutes without many great nearfalls. This one was special. There were a lot of awesome sequences that the crowd really bought into and the end result was a very exciting opener. Should it have been on the actual pay-per-view? Sure. That would have been nice. However, you’re also giving away a great match for free that could entice people to drop down the $45 (in US/Canada) and order the show. I thought all four guys did awesome. Rollins was especially excellent. That’s not taking anything away from the others. I just thought he was the glue that kept it together and was key for so many of the big moments. That Tower of Doom spot was outstanding.
The panel discussed that match, the Cena/Henry one and mentioned the return of Rob Van Dam as well.
Dean Ambrose was already in the ring for the opener. Fandango made his entrance along with Summer Rae. The World Heavyweight Championship Money in the Bank contract match is up first.
That’s the end of the pre-show. Bring on the PPV!
There was an outstanding video package to open the show. That’s not new. They’re always great. It focused on the All-Stars Money in the Bank match as well as Cena vs. Henry.
As mentioned, the first match is the Money in the Bank match for a World Heavyweight Championship contract. Fandango and Dean Ambrose were already in the ring. Zeb Colter did a promo as he brought out his buddies Jack Swagger and Antonio Cesaro. During his promo he complained about foreigners like usual. He said one of his “Real Americans” is going to win the match to take their nation back. “We the People” ended it of course. Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow entered together. They insulted the fans like usual. Wade Barrett was the last entrant.
World Heavyweight Championship Contract Money in the Bank Ladder Match: Wade Barrett, Cody Rhodes, Damien Sandow, Dean Ambrose, Fandango, Jack Swagger & Antonio Cesaro
Cesaro gave Rhodes a gutwrench suplex onto a ladder that was propped up against the ropes. Swagger threw Sandow onto the same ladder. Swagger was the first to set up a ladder, but Ambrose stopped him. He dumped Swagger to the floor, so only Ambrose was in the ring. Barrett destroyed Ambrose with a boot to the face. Fandango hit a legdrop on a ladder onto Barrett. Ambrose knocked Rhodes out of the ring by using a ladder. Sandow went at it with Fandango by throwing him into a ladder. Sandow gave Fandango a suplex onto a ladder that was propped up in the corner. Barrett pulled out a step from one of the ladders and then he attacked Sandow with it. That was innovative. Cesaro destroyed Barrett with an uppercut while Swagger went for Ambrose, but Ambrose came back with a DDT. Cesaro applied a choke on Ambrose at the top of the ladder. Rhodes gave Cesaro a Muscle Buster onto a ladder that was in the corner. That was a big spot. Barrett with a DDT on Rhodes as the crowd chanted “Cody’s Mustache.” Swagger went to climb along with Barrett. Barrett hit the Bull Hammer elbow on Swagger to knock him down. Fandango did the Sunset Flip Powerbomb onto the other side of the ladder. Ambrose hit his Headlock Driver DDT on Fandango. Ambrose put the ladder on his head to do the windmill spot where he attacked everybody. Swagger and Cesaro did a great spot where they dumped Ambrose outside the ring. They also threw a ladder onto Sandow. Colter was telling them to work together. Cesaro went on Swagger’s shoulders. Rhodes broke that up with a springboard dropkick on Cesaro. What a spot! Loud “this is awesome” chant again. Rhodes hit the Cross Rhodes on Fandango. Then he hit Cross Rhodes on Barrett. With everybody out, Rhodes grabbed a really tall ladder from the aisle. Rhodes set up the ladder in ring and Ambrose chased him up there. Rhodes knocked him off as he said “see ya bye!” That was great. Rollins & Reigns showed up. Rhodes held them off briefly. Reigns with a Spear on Fandango. The Usos showed up to take care of Rollins & Reigns. A bunch of guys started brawling outside the ring. Rhodes shoved the ladder as Ambrose climbed and he went crashing onto a pile of guys outside the ring. Rhodes cleared everybody out. Sandow showed up, knocked Rhodes off and Sandow grabbed the briefcase to win. It went 18 minutes.
Winner: Damien Sandow
The announcers played up the point that Sandow double crossed his best friend to win the match. JBL defended it by saying Sandow did what he had to do to win. It ended with Rhodes staring at Sandow.
Analysis: **** That was an awesome match. There were no babyfaces in there, but the crowd loved it and I did too. I loved how they told so many stories in the match with Cesaro/Swagger working together at one point and dominating. Then Ambrose dominated with the help of his buddies. Rhodes was the biggest star of the match. The crowd really got behind him. It looked like he would win, but they set it up perfectly for Sandow to sneak in for the victory. I wrote in the preview that I thought Rhodes would turn face. I still think it’s happening except now it’s a result of Sandow winning this match by turning on his best friend. I’m looking forward to seeing where they go with it. I’m a fan of Sandow as well as Rhodes. Great booking.
The new Monday Night Raw GM Brad Maddox showed up for a promo. He thanked Mr. McMahon for appointing him for the job. Brad Maddox said he appointed Vickie Guerrero on the pre-show panel where she was with Show, Mathews & Kingston. He asked the fans to chant “Thank You Vickie” with him. Not that many people chanted it with him. Maddox insulted the fans to get some heat. Maddox set up a Vickie Guerrero video package. It highlighted moments where she was humiliated. It was more cheesy than it was funny. When it ended, The Miz’s music started up so that match is up next.
Analysis: Not a great segment. Waste of time.
Intercontinental Championship: Curtis Axel (w/Paul Heyman) vs. The Miz
Miz told the referee that Heyman interfered in the match, so the referee tossed out Heyman from ringside. Miz outsmarted Heyman. The crowd chanted “we want Heyman” after that. I guess this was WWE’s way of taking Heyman out because they knew he might be cheered due to his history with ECW in Philadelphia. By doing that it will prevent Axel from getting cheered. Axel was in control of the match with the running snapmare that his father Mr. Perfect used to do. JBL put over the strategy of Miz in getting Heyman ejected. Miz came back with a boot to the face. Some fans were booing as he hit a corner clothesline followed by a double axe off the top for two. Miz was doing his “angry face” thing too often. Axel countered the Figure Four Leg Lock and then hit the Perfectplex. Miz kicked out at two. Miz did a kneebreaker and then applied the Figure Four Leg Lock. He did one move on the knee to set it up. Why can’t he do more moves to set it up? Axel was close to tapping out, but Axel turned it meaning the pressure was on Miz. Miz reversed it back to the original way. Axel got to the ropes to break it. Axel kicked Miz in the jaw and then hit a modified Neckbreaker where he slammed Miz’ head into the mat for the win after 9 minutes.
Winner: Curtis Axel
Analysis: ** It was pretty boring in the first half, but the last few minutes were solid. I liked the spots with the Figure Four Leg Lock although like I said it would be nice if Miz could work on the knee earlier in the match. The story was that Axel found a way to win even without Heyman at ringside. I think most of us assumed Axel was going to win. It was too early to take the title off him. Miz can move on to something else.
Prior to the Divas Title match, they showed the contract signing segment from Smackdown when Kaitlyn gave AJ Lee a Spear to end it.
Divas Championship: AJ Lee (w/Big E Langston) vs. Kaitlyn (w/Layla)
Kaitlyn had a brace on her elbow because she hyper-extended it on the Spear according to Cole. Kaitlyn threw AJ outside the ring, but AJ shoved Kaitlyn shoulder first into the ring post. AJ worked on the injured left arm of Kaitlyn. In the ring, AJ showed her athleticism with a bridging armbar. She’s hot and flexible. Good for her. AJ continued to try to wear her down, but Kaitlyn came back with a backbreaker. Running shoulderblock by Kaitlyn. Reverse DDT got a two count for Kaitlyn. AJ hit a nice armbreaker to regain the momentum. AJ went to the top, but Kaitlyn shoved her off and Langston caught AJ. When they went back in the ring, AJ got a two count on a rollup. Kaitlyn hit a Spear. She couldn’t cover because she hurt her arm again. AJ applied the Black Widow submission hold that led to some pain on Kaitlyn’s shoulder. Kaitlyn tapped out after seven minutes.
Winner: AJ Lee via submission
There was nothing in the post match except an evil smile from AJ while Layla tried to help Kaitlyn.
Analysis: *3/4 It was fine. It wasn’t as good as the Payback match, but still a good Divas match. I liked the psychology in the match with AJ working over the left arm of Kaitlyn from the beginning of the match right up until the finish. Why can’t Miz work on somebody’s legs if he uses a Figure Four Leg Lock? It’s basic wrestling psychology. Kaitlyn did a good job on her comeback. She did very well in terms of selling the arm injury too. The finish was reminiscent of Payback last month when AJ also won with the Black Widow submission.
There was a commercial for the Total Divas show on E Network on July 28.
The panel of Mathews, Show, Kingston and Guerrero talked about some of the things that happened so far. It was only about one minute.
Chris Jericho vs. Ryback
Ryback was doing a lot of cheap heel tactics by taking his time to get in the ring. There was a “Goldberg” chant about two minutes in, which the announcers didn’t acknowledge. Ryback avoided a Jericho cross body attack by stunning Jericho on the top rope. Ryback took control with a body slam followed by a splash off the second rope for two. Ryback gave Jericho a running forearm that sent him off the apron and Jericho landed between the English & Spanish announce tables. Back in the ring, Ryback grabbed a chinlock. Jericho made a comeback with a forearm shot and then a bridging Northern Lights suplex for two. Cole didn’t call it by its name of course. Ryback slipped on a corner charge leading to a Jericho boot. Ryback came back with an overhead belly to belly suplex (“what a throw” is like “what a maneuver” for Cole I think). Clothesline by Ryback. Jericho wanted the Codebreaker, but Ryback slammed him down. Jericho knocked Ryback down by kicking his leg and then Jericho hit an enziguiri to the head for two. Jericho hit a Codebreaker while Ryback was on the apron, so Ryback fell to the floor. Jericho hit a cross body block. Ryback came back with a Gorilla Press Slam attempt that Jericho countered into a DDT. That was sweet. Jericho’s the master of counters. Jericho hit a shoulder block and then the patented “c’mon baby” yell. Jericho went for the Lionsault. He landed on his feet, Ryback rolled him up and covered him for the three count. He didn’t even pull the tights. It was clean. It went ten minutes.
Analysis: **1/2 They were building up to a really good match when it just ended suddenly. I figured Ryback was going to win. I think most people did. It was the right booking move because he really needed a win. Since it was clean they don’t need to do a rematch, but it wouldn’t shock me if they did it again on television this week. I loved Jericho’s counter of the Gorilla Press into a DDT. I’m actually surprised that Ryback wasn’t able to hit Shellshocked, but it didn’t hurt the match. I just wish they got another five minutes because I enjoyed it.
There was a video package of the new WWE Performance Center that opened up in Orlando this past week.
Del Rio vs. Ziggler up next. There was a video package to highlight the feud featuring the two title changes in the last three months.
World Heavyweight Championship: Alberto Del Rio vs. Dolph Ziggler
No Ricardo Rodriguez with Del Rio because of his failed drug suspension. The storyline reason is he got hurt when Ziggler hit Rodriguez with a guitar shot. Ziggler hit his perfect dropkick for a two count early on. Loud “Let’s Go Ziggler” chants from the crowd. Ziggler hit ten elbow drops in succession with the crowd chanting along and then a clothesline over the top to the floor. Del Rio hit a hard kick to the head as Ziggler sold it perfectly. Of course that’s a good spot because Ziggler was out with a concussion, which led to Ziggler losing the World Title a month ago. Del Rio was in control when Ziggler hit a dropkick. Ziggler went for a corner splash, Del Rio moved and Ziggler sold the head bump huge again. Del Rio hit a series of kidney shots followed by a hard punch to the head. Del Rio did a Ziggler pose to huge boos. A charge into the ropes missed as Del Rio went crashing to the floor. When Del Rio went to the top, Ziggler popped up and gave Del Rio a top rope X-Factor facebuster for a two count. That was an awesome spot. Del Rio went shoulder first into the post leading to a Ziggler neckbreaker. Del Rio countered the Fameasser into a bridging German Suplex for two. Ziggler avoided a head kick and hit the Fameasser (or Famouser) for two. Great nearfall. Del Rio came back with a backbreaker for two. Del Rio jumped off the top with an attack when Ziggler hit a dropkick to Del Rio’s face.
AJ Lee’s music played as Ziggler’s girlfriend Lee skipped around the ring. Did we need the music? Not really. Ziggler told her to leave. Ziggler hit an impressive DDT for a two count. Ziggler went up top, Del Rio tripped him up. Reverse superplex by Del Rio got a two count. That was another awesome nearfall. They are doing a great job of setting up nearfalls as well as counter holds. The crowd was cheering for Ziggler again. Del Rio hit a side kick to the head for a two count. Lee looked puzzled at ringside. Del Rio pulled down his knee brace. He was going for another kick attack when Lee ran into the ring with the Divas Title. She hit Del Rio in the face. That led to the disqualification win for Del Rio. The match ended at 15 minutes.
Winner: Alberto Del Rio via DQ
Post match, Ziggler was mad at AJ for costing him the match. He was telling her that he had the match won. He left her in the ring alone. The crowd chanted “you screwed Ziggler” at her.
Analysis: ***1/2 This is obviously leading to the breakup of Ziggler and Lee, which will probably involve Big E Langston. It was a very intense, fast paced match with a lot of great nearfalls by both guys. The crowd was really invested in what they were watching. Neither man was able to hit their finisher or even attempt it. They were building up to it well when they got to the disqualification finish. I’m hoping we see more matches with these two, but obviously they are building to Ziggler’s breakup with Lee rather than his quest to get back the World Title. I don’t expect Ziggler to win the World Title from Del Rio now. I thought he would win it here, but it might take him a while to get back there. We might be looking at a scenario leading to Ziggler vs. Langston at Summerslam.
There was a video package for the WWE’s partnership with the National Guard. There were some crowd shots of the troops as well.
There was a video package about the Mark Henry/John Cena feud. That match is up next. I’m glad this match isn’t going on last. It’s better placement to put the All-Stars ladder match at the end of the show.
Mark Henry received an ovation on his entrance. John Cena was booed by the majority of the crowd. Hopefully there’s a “That’s What I Do” chant. When Justin Roberts did the intros, Henry received cheers again. Cena was booed when his name was called. Cole busted out his usual line about how Cena was perhaps the most polarizing figure in WWE history. It’s true.
WWE Championship: John Cena vs. Mark Henry
Henry dominated the action early on with power moves. They went outside the ring where Henry gave Cena a suplex with Cena’s ribs hitting the top of the steel steps. Ouch. “Sexual Chocolate” chant. Announcers didn’t acknowledge that one. Henry hit a splash on Cena’s back. Cena hit a dropkick, Henry didn’t move and dropped Cena with a clothesline. They went outside the ring where Henry rammed Cena into the barricade. In the ring, Henry missed a corner charge and Cena tried to slam him. Didn’t work. Henry fell onto Cena. Announcers are talking about how they don’t think Cena can lift Henry for the Attitude Adjustment. Cena knocked down Henry with a shoulder block and then a side suplex. I think he lifted Henry up about two feet. It wasn’t impressive. Five Knuckle Shuffle by Cena. Cena wanted the Attitude Adjustment, but Henry fell on top of him again for a two count. Henry: “Get your ass up, boy.” Cena countered a Henry power move with a DDT. It wasn’t pretty, but it was good enough. Cena hit the Attitude Adjustment. Henry kicked out at two. Cena was shocked.
Cena went to the top rope, Henry caught him in his arms and dropped Cena with the World’s Strongest Slam at the ten minute mark. That was an awesome nearfall too! Henry took the cover off the turnbuckle. He grabbed two steel chairs. Ref Scott Armstrong told him not to bring the weapons in. Henry took off another turnbuckle cover as Armstrong was tossing the chairs out. It was a distraction by Henry. Cena ended up shoving Henry into the exposed turnbuckle. STF by Cena. Henry got to the ropes. The crowd was loud for the entire match. Henry shoved Armstrong into Cena. Henry gave Cena the low blow. Ref didn’t see it. Two count for Henry. Henry wanted the World’s Strongest Slam, Cena slipped out, slapped on the STF and Henry tapped out. Cena wins. It went 15 minutes.
Winner: John Cena
Post match, Henry sold the attack by asking the ref to help him to the back.
Analysis: ***1/4 It was better than I thought going in. They did a good job of telling the story of Henry’s power moves dominating the match in the first half. Cena showed a lot of babyface heart (despite being booed) and kept on fighting back to get the win. The chemistry they had was pretty good. The crowd was into everything they did. I liked it. I think they could have had a better match with a stipulation, but it was fine as a regular match that got 15 minutes. No major grips from me. I expected Cena to win and he did.
The panel talked about what happened. I took that opportunity to take a bathroom break.
There was a video package for the Wyatt Family attack on Kane.
It’s Money in the Bank All-Stars match time. Rob Van Dam entered first. He looks like he’s in great shape. The crowd gave him a huge ovation. The second man was Christian, who is a favorite of mine. Not a favorite in terms of thinking he’s going to win, but a guy I’ve always liked a lot. The crowd gave a huge reaction to Daniel Bryan, which is no surprise. The man is on fire. Randy Orton was out fourth. Sheamus was fifth. All of them received good reactions. The final entrant was CM Punk, who was greeted with loud “CM Punk” chants by the crowd.
Money in the Bank All-Stars WWE Championship Contract Ladder Match: Randy Orton, Rob Van Dam, CM Punk, Daniel Bryan, Christian & Sheamus
Everybody ganged up on RVD – he was knocked out of the ring. Then they ganged up on Sheamus – he was knocked out of the ring. Punk dumped Christian and Bryan dumped Orton. Bryan vs. Punk face to face. Loud “yes” chants of course. Love it. They had a brief exchange, but Sheamus ran in with a ladder and Orton dropkicked him. RVD with a kick off the top. Monkey flip by RVD to Christian. Spinning kick by RVD to Orton. Crowd loves him. Van Dam gave Christian a slam onto a ladder in the ring. RVD hit Rolling Thunder on Bryan, who was on a ladder that was lying in the ring. RVD kicked Orton in the head and he wanted the Five Star Frog Splash, but Christian knocked him off the top with a ladder shot. Christian used a tiny ladder as a weapon. It’s easier to attack people with a ladder that small. Christian was the first to climb up (it was a regular ladder), but Sheamus stopped him. Sheamus knocked out Christian with a punch followed by a ladder shot to the face. RVD knocked Sheamus off the ladder as he was climbing. That didn’t look like a safe spot, but Sheamus was okay after landing. Rolling Senton by Sheamus on RVD on the ladder. Sheamus wanted to powerbomb Bryan on a ladder that was set up between the apron and announce table. Bryan fought out of it. Bryan hit a running knee attack off the apron. There were two ladders set up as six guys were climbing up at the same time. The briefcase was swinging. All six guys went tumbling down. That was a fun spot as we hit the ten minute mark.
Sheamus hit the White Noise on RVD. Sheamus hit RVD with a ladder and then a Brogue Kick. Bryan prevented Sheamus from getting it, but Sheamus was still able to hang from briefcase. Punk came into the ring to knock him down. Sheamus was unable to pull the briefcase down despite getting his hands on it. Punk hit a running knee on Sheamus in the corner and then a drove a ladder onto the back of Sheamus. That sent Sheamus crashing face first. Punk gave a bow to the crowd. That was funny. Orton gave Punk a T-Bone suplex into a ladder that was propped up in the corner. Christian showed up to give Orton a Spear. RVD stopped Christian’s momentum with a ladder shot to the ribs. The crowd was chanting that they wanted tables. Christian set up a vertical ladder in the corner and another one in the middle of the ring. RVD knocked Christian off the ladder that was in the middle while RVD landed on the other ladder in the corner. RVD climbed the ladder and a hit a Five Star Frog Splash (or close to it) in the biggest spot of the match so far. RVD climbed up the ladder, but Sheamus knocked him off and RVD went crashing into the ropes. We’re at the 20 minute mark now.
Bryan destroyed Sheamus & RVD with a series of kicks. Bryan hit Orton in the ribs with a ladder. Dropkick into the ladder. Bryan hit a dive onto Punk outside the ring. Back to the top rope, double missile dropkick by Bryan. He’s on fire! There was a huge spot as Sheamus went crashing through a ladder outside the ring. Ouch! Bryan climbed up the ladder. Curtis Axel showed up. He destroyed Bryan with a steel chair shot to the back. That was random. As Axel walked around ringside, CM Punk grabbed him and gave Axel the Go To Sleep. Paul Heyman walked down to ringside. He yelled at Axel about what he did and Heyman told Axel that he wanted Punk to win. Punk climbed up the ladder. Another ladder was in the ring. Heyman slammed the ladder into the back of Punk. Then Punk turned around and Heyman slammed the ladder into the face of Punk. That will set up Punk vs. Lesnar at Summerslam. Punk’s head was cut open from the ladder shot. RVD climbed up. Randy Orton showed up. He knocked RVD down as he fell into Orton’s arms for the RKO. Orton was the last one standing as he climbed up. Orton unhooked the briefcase. The match went 25 minutes.
Winner: Randy Orton
Analysis: ****1/4 That was fun. I think I might have had expectations that were too high, but I still enjoyed it immensely. It was a great ladder match. They really set it up well. I don’t think anybody believed Sheamus or Christian had a chance and neither guy was really booked as a threat. RVD stood out with some great high spots including that Frog Splash off a ladder onto Christian. The Heyman/Punk story obviously sets up the Lesnar/Punk match as mentioned. I like how they set it up. Heyman attacked him in the back (stabbed him in the back, I guess you guess you could say) and then knocked him out with a hard ladder shot to the face. Punk was bleeding from it although he wasn’t on camera much. The Axel attack on Bryan was pretty random. That likely means they will feud, which is a shame because I wanted Bryan to go for the WWE Title. The match wasn’t a match of the year contender really, but it was still very well done. I enjoyed.
As for the Orton win, if you listened to TJR Radio he was my pick on Tuesday night. By the time I wrote the PPV preview I changed the pick to Bryan. I figured it was going to be one of them. My guess is they will use the briefcase to set up Orton’s heel turn although how long have we been talking about an Orton turn? It’s been about a year. I don’t know if it’s going to happen. It just feels like the right time. It’s also the old “win on TV, lose on PPV” theory because Bryan had the advantage on Raw and he lost. Of course Orton had the advantage on Smackdown, so that’s why I thought he might not win. I was guilty of over-thinking I guess.
They showed some replays of some of the big spots. Orton celebrated with the briefcase. The show ended at 10:50pmET.
Five Stars of the Show
1. Randy Orton
2. Cody Rhodes
3. Daniel Bryan
4. Dolph Ziggler
5. Mark Henry
Others deserve praise too: John Cena, Damien Sandow, Alberto Del Rio, CM Punk, Christian and more.
I give the show a score of 8 out of 10.
I thought it was a very good show in terms of in-ring action. Two matches above four stars, another three matches above three stars (including the pre-show) and nothing on the show was that bad. If you don’t care for star ratings that’s another way of saying there were two excellent matches and two very good matches as well. Everything got time. Stories developed. I liked the action from beginning to end. There were no points in the show where I really hated it except maybe when Maddox was sucking up to Guerrero, which was a waste of time after a match with a bunch of highspots.
I’m looking forward to what’s next in the Heyman/Punk story because it should lead to Lesnar vs. Punk at Summerslam, which is the match I’m looking forward to most this year.
This show also set up possible stories for Sandow/Rhodes, Ziggler/Langston, Axel/Bryan and of course two briefcase holders in Sandow & Orton, who can cash in for a title shot at any time. I still hope it’s Cena/Bryan at Summerslam as rumored. I think that those that are so angry about Bryan not winning MITB need to realize that it will be better if he wins the WWE Title without the briefcase.
In a lot of ways, it was a show dominated by the heels. That makes sense going into Summerslam because that will be a show where most of the faces get the big wins. That’s just how it works.
I liked the booking for the most part. I liked the in-ring action. I like where things are headed. I’m happy about the current direction of WWE. Bring on the road to Summerslam.
Ranking the 2013 WWE Pay-Per-Views
Here’s the order with the rankings on the 1-10 scale.
Money in the Bank – 8
Payback – 8
Royal Rumble – 7.5
Extreme Rules – 6.5
WrestleMania 29 – 6
It’s really hard to rank these. I think based on the quality of matches up and down the card this was the best PPV of the year. Agree? Disagree? That’s okay either way. I’m happy with WWE PPVs this year. All above average.
I’m done. I’m not sure if it will be a live Raw Deal on Monday or not. I might watch the MLB Home Run Derby with some friends, so I’ll catch Raw later.
Thanks for reading.
John Canton – [email protected]
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