The SmarK Rant for WWE Main Event – 04.08.14
By Scott Keith on 25th August 2023
The SmarK Rant for WWE Main Event – 04.08.14
When I started doing this show last week it was mentioned that this episode had a really good Wyatts-Shield main event, and I filed that one away to watch eventually. Well, obviously now is the time.
For perspective, we’re a week removed from Wrestlemania XXX with Daniel Bryan winning the WWE title. The show is long gone from broadcast TV and debuted as a WWE Network exclusive around this time.
Taped from New Orleans, LA
Your hosts are Byron Saxton & Tom Phillips
Meanwhile, on RAW, Daniel Bryan is forced to defend the title against HHH, which leads to a reunion of Evolution and a brawl with the Shield when they make the save.
The Shield v. The Wyatt Family
In a weird fashion statement, the Shield wears stylized cloth face masks to the ring. Can you imagine if people just started wearing those all the time? Dean slaps the sheep mask right off Rowan’s face and the Shield double-teams him in their corner with a double suplex for two. Rowan beats Seth down with clubbing forearms, but he fights back with an awkward attempt at a flying armbar takedown, which he eventually turns into a triangle on the mat. That leads to a standoff as we take a break. It was always especially pointless to do commercial breaks on the WWE Network, but the show was edited and repackaged for international broadcast so whatever. Back with Seth slugging it out with Bray, and Wyatt hits a backbreaker for two. Amazing that Bray was only 27 at this point. He carried himself like someone who had been around for a decade at that point. Harper comes in and hits a running elbow on Seth in the corner, but Rollins takes him into the turnbuckles and it’s over to Reigns. Roman runs wild and Ambrose gets a neckbreaker for two, but walks into a big boot that gets two. Rowan comes in with the DOUBLE ATOMIC NOOGIE OF DEATH and Ambrose is busted open…no wait it’s only 2014. That’s not a thing yet. Harper chokes him out on the ropes and Rowan goes to a neck vice and tosses him, but Dean skins the cat and then Rowan boots him right back out as we take another break.
Back with Harper dropping an elbow for two and going to a chinlock, but Dean escapes with a jawbreaker before Harper drops him facefirst for two. Rowan with a bearhug, but Ambrose reverses him into a sleeper, so Rowan drops him with a slam for two. Harper beats on him on the ropes, but Dean gets the rebound lariat, so Bray cuts him off to prevent the tag. Ambrose tries to go up and Bray cuts him off again and tries a superplex. Ambrose fights him off with headbutts and he’s busted open…no wait, sorry, still typing on reflex there. The other two Shield try to intervene and the Wyatts take them out on the floor, but Ambrose escapes Sister Abigail with a rollup for two. He follows with a DDT and they’re both out, but it’s hot tag Rollins and he runs wild with dropkicks to put the Wyatts on the floor. He hits them both with dives and makes the comeback on Rowan in the ring with a shiranui for two. Wyatt takes out a charging Dean with a back elbow, but Roman hits Bray with the superman punch. Rollins continues running wild with enzuigiris on the Bludgeon Brothers and Ambrose finishes Rowan with the Dirty Deeds headlock DDT at 19:32. Roman was surprisingly uninvolved in this one until the crazy finish. Started like a standard six man and then they just started hitting crazy moves after the hot tag and it turned awesome. ***3/4.
Afterwards, Renee interviews the Shield and Dean is too overcome by coughing due to busted ribs to do the promo. And they respond to the trash talk from the Authority, who called them nameless and faceless. Well you certainly can’t accuse any of them of being under the radar for the next decade.
Meanwhile, Adam Rose welcomes us to the Exotic Express, on the way to the main roster. In retrospect the party bus should have stayed in the garage.
Meanwhile, Brock Lesnar ends the Streak and people are somewhat surprised.
Jack Swagger v. Dolph Ziggler
Actually lots to unpack here, as Swagger was part of the “Real Americans” with Zeb Coulter, playing the kind of far right anti-immigration conspiracy-spouting Ultra Nuclear MAGA nutjob that soon became a national disease. So in fact they were quite a few years ahead of their time. All they need is Kari Lake to do promos for them. Ziggler charges and knocks himself silly in the corner, and Swagger hits a pump splash for two. Swagger works him over in the corner and follows with a short clothesline for two before going to a double arm hold on the mat. Ziggler fights out of that and backdrops Swagger to the floor, and then makes a comeback in the ring and slugs away in the corner. Swagger clips the knee and tries another Swagger Bomb, but Dolph gets the knees up and cradles for two. Swagger with the anklelock, but Ziggler quickly rolls out of that and hits the fameasser for two. Swagger blocks the Zig Zag and puts him down with a big boot for two. Ziggler with a DDT for two. Dolph with a victory roll for two, but Swagger catches him in the anklelock and Dolph taps at 4:14. An OK TV match. **1/4. Swagger actually probably could have been pushed a lot harder given that the gimmick got pretty over and was striking a real chord with some people. Like Kid Rock, for instance.
Meanwhile, Impossible is actually I’m Possible, as long as you Bo-Lieve. Oh man that poor guy right now.
Sin Cara v. Alexander Rusev
Rusev was fresh off being called up from NXT and he gets to squash Fake Sin Cara to start out. He shrugs off an enzuigiri from the apron and smashes Sin Cara down with a uranage and then finishes with the Accolade at 0:48. And nine years later he’s still doing 30 second squashes.
I don’t have much to add here. The six-man is certainly worth checking out and the rest of the show is quite pleasant and watchable. RIP to Bray Wyatt.