Date: August 13, 2015
Location: Moda Center, Portland, Oregon
Commentators: Jerry Lawler, Jimmy Uso, Tom Phillips
With Summerslam closing in, there’s little more than window dressing to go. John Cena is officially in the main event as confirmed on Tough Enough, meaning we’re going to be getting that title for title match against Seth Rollins. Smackdown is getting harder and harder to predict, but Summerslam could use some more midcard buildup. Let’s get to it.
Here’s Seth Rollins to open things up as we look at the end of his match with Randy Orton on Monday and the near cash-in from Sheamus. The champ thinks we need to settle down a bit because we all live very fast paced lives. We’re getting to see something like Babe Ruth hitting 1,000 home runs or Michael Jordan winning 20 MVPs or the Rolling Stones and the Beatles reaching levels of genius never before seen.
We’re getting to see…..Seth Rollins at the top of his game. We’ve been seeing Rollins escape Randy Orton, bring Neville back to earth, and break Cena’s nose into a million pieces. Someday the fans here will be telling their grandchildren that they saw Seth Rollins in his prime.
However, people like John Cena don’t get it, and we see a clip from Tough Enough of Cena, now with a nose resembling a human’s, confirming that he’ll be in the ring at Summerslam (complete with Daniel Bryan leading a YES chant). The champ would like to have Cena at Raw this week, so he can see what it’s like to fail. Orton failed, Lesnar failed, Neville failed…..and here’s Neville, now with his own shirt, to interrupt.
Rollins asks if Neville has a kitten up a tree to rescue. Neville thinks it’s going to take a superhero to shut Rollins up. Seth has left out a lot of details, such as the fact that he lost to Cena in the broken nose match, or Orton preventing the cash-in on Monday. Or maybe Rollins not being able to kick out of the Red Arrow. Rollins thinks Neville is less of a superhero and more like a Mouseketeer with a Napoleon Complex.
Neville accuses Rollins of going on and on so here’s Cesaro to assist in the shutting up process. The WWE Universe, including the Cesaro Section, is sick of it. So is Kevin Owens, who attacks Cesaro from behind as Rollins lays Neville out with the buckle bomb. I think you know what’s coming.
Charlotte vs. Naomi
Becky is with Charlotte but the rest of Team BAD is here as well. An early WOO get Charlotte a slap in the face but Charlotte gets in a shot of her own. We get a clarification on Sunday’s match: it’s basically a three way elimination match and one fall per team, not individual Divas. So much for that being fun. Naomi shoves Charlotte into the corner and we take a break.
Back with Charlotte fighting out of a chinlock, only to get crotched (just go with it) down and put right back in the chinlock. A nice dropkick and split legged legdrop get two on Charlotte and there’s chinlock number three. Charlotte’s rollup doesn’t work very well so Naomi kicks her in the face. She takes her rollups seriously. Some chops from Charlotte set up a spear for two before she throws Naomi onto Sasha and Tamina. Back inside and the Figure Eight makes Naomi tap at 8:30.
Rating: C-. This was one of the weaker efforts in the new Divas era but it wasn’t terrible. Like I’ve said roughly every week since the thing started, there’s no reason for these random matches to be taking place if there’s nothing to fight over. At this point they’re all just standing around as Nikki gets closer to the record, which really doesn’t do anything for anyone.
Video on Stephen Amell on Raw, setting up Amell/Neville vs. King Barrett/Stardust at Summerslam. Amell looks to be one of the best celebrities they’ve had, but I’m skeptical about the match. If nothing else, I have no reason to want to see Barrett after his loss this past week. If only there was, I don’t know, ANYONE ELSE who could have taken that loss.
Here’s Ryback with something to say. After some clips of him destroying various people on MizTV and posing with Daniel Bryan Monday, Ryback says the Big Guy is back. Well that clears up a few questions, such as who is the guy, who happens to be big, in the ring. The night he won the Intercontinental Title was the greatest night of his career because he finally achieved one of his goals.
Then he had a horrible staph infection (complete with a picture), but he shell shocked that too and came out here to Portland. While he was at home, he heard a lot of calls for him to forfeit the title, but all the positive messages and get well wishes made him want to come back even more. It’s feeding time at Summerslam and Big Show and Miz could make quite a good meal. No one interrupts here and as usual, Ryback does well with his mic time. From reports I’ve found, Bo Dallas came out and asked to be added to the title match but got laid out. I guess that was cut for whatever reason.
Here are the Wyatts with something to say. Harper says he was born evil and wants to know our excuses. Bray talks about Harper having an evil stare and tonight it’s set on Roman Reigns. Wyatt is going to bring his brother for the family war at Summerslam, but here’s Ambrose to cut him off. Why don’t more people do that? Dean doesn’t have anything to say because he just wants to watch Reigns punch faces.
Roman Reigns vs. Luke Harper
Roman starts slugging away with right hands (Dean must be happy) and a clothesline knocks Luke to the floor for a break. Back with Harper getting in some big shots of his own until Reigns just muscles him over like a Samoan Superman. Harper comes back with something like a Michinoku Driver for two before just standing on Reigns’ head. A catapult into the middle rope gets two more for Luke as we’re firmly in the power brawl stage.
There’s a chinlock but Dean offers advice: “MOVE BABY!” The Gator Roll takes us to another chinlock before Reigns fights up and sends a charging Harper into the post. Reigns wins a slugout but eats a dropkick, which surprised Lawler, even though Luke has done it multiple times. Then again I don’t remember him doing it on Smackdown that often so maybe Jerry doesn’t see it.
Roman drops Harper back first onto the apron and hits the apron boot, drawing over Dean and Bray for a staredown. The fight breaks out on the floor but Harper takes Reigns’ head off to put both guys down. Another slugout goes to Roman until the referee pulls him off, allowing Harper to nail a superkick for a close two. The Superman Punch connects but Bray comes in for the DQ at 12:07.
Rating: B. That might be high but I had a really good time with this. It was two big power guys just beating the tar out of each other and making each shot sound harder than the previous one. The ending brings it down a bit but I’d rather have that than either guy taking another fall this close to Summerslam.
It’s a huge brawl post match with the Wyatts being knocked into the crowd. Uso getting all hyped up is perfect here.
Sheamus doesn’t want to talk about Monday night because people are tired of the same things over and over again. He was about to give them what they craved on Monday but Orton ruined everything. It was almost time for the age of the warriors but Orton knew he couldn’t hang in that world so he broke it up like he was in a Terminator movie. Well on Monday, Sheamus will be back to Brogue Kick Orton until he’s ground into dirt and erased from existence. Then it’ll be just him and Rollins, when the future is just a Brogue Kick away. I liked this as Sheamus had a theme and stuck with it to keep things grounded for a change.
Neville and Cesaro talk strategy. Or maybe they swap banana bread recipes. The volume is off so I can’t tell.
New Day vs. Prime Time Players
Non-title and Kofi is on the floor for a change. An inset promo from the Players say they’re the big deal in the division because they have these titles. Darren: “Like an afro! Big round hair!” Big E. powers Titus down to start but that’s fine with O’Neil who picks E. up and throws him to the mat. Titus gets tossed to the floor so Kofi can get in a cheap shot, setting up the revolving stomps. That’s such a simple yet effective spot. A running dropkick from Woods takes us to a break.
We come back with Titus in E.’s abdominal stretch but O’Neil quickly fights out and it’s off to Young to clean house. The belly to back on the apron (as stolen by Reigns earlier in the night) drops Woods but E. breaks up the Gut Check. New Day goes to leave but Los Matadores and the Lucha Dragons cut off the escape route. E. gets dropped and it’s Woods all alone with the champs, setting up a quick Gut Check for the pin at 8:27.
Rating: C-. Nothing great here but my goodness I hope they haven’t put New Day on the bullet proof list. They barely ever win a big match anymore (no beating Los Matadores isn’t big) and just stay over because of how awesome they are at talking. I’m really hoping they get better treatment than that because they’ve worked hard enough to deserve it.
Dancing ensues post match.
We get the long video from Raw on Undertaker vs. Lesnar.
Cesaro/Neville vs. Seth Rollins/Kevin Owens
Cesaro starts with the champ and holds him in the air for a delayed vertical suplex. He holds him up so long that Neville can take Owens down, followed by a quick splash as we take a break. Back with Owens holding Neville in a chinlock, which unfortunately has lost a lot of the spark Owens had put into it. I’m sure it’s just because he’s overweight though and has nothing to do with his push being stopped cold.
It’s back to Rollins for a chinlock of his own but Neville grabs a jawbreaker to escape. Not that it matters as Owens comes back in for another chinlock as this is already getting dull. Another jawbreaker gets Neville out again but Rollins knocks Cesaro off the apron to break up a tag. The Cannonball gets two on Neville but he finally flips over for the tag in a nice move. Cesaro comes in and starts cleaning house with the running uppercuts to Rollins, totally rocking the champ.
Seth gets launched to the floor and both good guys hit suicide dives to take everyone out. Another running uppercut knocks Rollins onto the announcers’ table and Cesaro gets two off a high cross body back inside. Owens comes back in and is promptly thrown to the floor again, but the distraction sets up the Buckle Bomb from Seth. The Pedigree is countered into the Sharpshooter though and Seth is dragged back to the middle of the ring. Owens comes in for the save again and has to fight off a Swing, allowing Rollins to grab a rollup with a handful of trunks for the pin at 11:46.
Rating: C+. Once they got past the never ending chinlocks (because people who look like Owens aren’t allowed to be exciting in the ring. They tried it a few times against Cena but they got too close to great matches with someone who doesn’t look like they were carved out of stone and WWE doesn’t know how to handle that), this turned into the fun tag match they were shooting for. At least Cesaro got pinned with cheating and by someone higher up than him, but he needs to actually win something soon.
Seth bails so Owens gets slammed down, setting up the Red Arrow to end the show.
Overall Rating: C+. There was enough good stuff on this show to make it work but it had too much filler. Two long videos really shouldn’t be necessary on a two hour show, especially when it only had four matches. Still though, fun stuff this week and a good building show for Summerslam, which is all Smackdown needs to be for now.
Charlotte b. Naomi – Figure Eight
Roman Reigns b. Luke Harper via DQ when Bray Wyatt interfered
Prime Time Players b. New Day – Gut Check to Woods
Kevin Owens/Seth Rollins b. Cesaro/Neville – Rollup with a handful of trunks
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