The Weekly Wrestling Wrap-Up #18

WWE is heading in to Night of Champions, TNA is wrapping up the Bound for Glory Series as they go in to their No Surrender special event, and Ring of Honor has their World Title Tournament. Care to know what’s going on? Cue the graphic!

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The Weekly Wrestling Wrap-Up is, as usual, only a reflection of television broadcasts from nationally-televised wrestling companies in the US, and therefore will not comment on any news that happens outside of said broadcasts. However, should a television broadcast only be available online in a certain area, or due to circumstances beyond the author’s control, internet streams will be utilized.

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The Stories

RAW
To open the show, we had The Shield out at ring side, and Triple H came out to the ring. Triple H immediately went back to SummerSlam. He once again said it was best for business. He then went to the previous RAW. He then explained why he had Bryan humiliated – he insulted Stephanie and Triple H’s family. He said that he was willing to move on from it and get back to business, and because business is booming, he decided to bring out the man responsible for that – Randy Orton. Triple H congratulated Randy Orton for the company’s new momentum, and said he wanted to reward Randy Orton. It was a Cadillac Escalade. Orton thanked Triple H for the gift, and for his vision. Of course, that brought out Daniel Bryan. He said that the car was nice, but he had to thank the WWE Universe for their belief in and support of him. He thanked John Cena for the opportunity for the title match. He then thanked Triple H for ending the charade, because his view of the WWE is just as narrow-mined and misguided as Vince McMahon’s. Orton tried to come back, but Bryan said that at Night of Champions, he would be the new WWE Champion. Triple H responded with a poor rendition of “When You Wish Upon A Star”, and then put Daniel Bryan in a gauntlet match against The Shield.
Josh Matthews was backstage interviewing Christian about the gauntlet match main event. Christian said that that was a loaded question. He remembered the Attitude Era and what happened then. Randy Orton came out and said he understood why Christian would be upset about the way things are going. Christian said that it seemed like Triple H had found a new tool. That led to a match. After the match between the two, Daniel Bryan came on the screen. He said that if Orton is the face of the WWE, does that mean Daniel Bryan is the face of the WWE? They zoomed back to show that Bryan was in front of Orton’s new SUV, and revealed that he had painted “Yes” all over the Escalade. Brad Maddox was in the backstage area, saying that the locker room was laughing at what happened. Triple H said he viewed the car and the WWE Championship as personal property. He then told Maddox to get the roster together to watch Bryan’s gauntlet match, and if anybody dared to interfere, Triple H would personally fire them. The end of the gauntlet match had The Shield setting Daniel Bryan up for a spear from Roman Reigns. Triple H came out and simply watched. Bryan then ate an RKO to close the show.
They had a fan vote about the match between CM Punk and Intercontinental Champion Curtis Axel. CM Punk gave a quick interview about how he wanted to physically punish Paul Heyman, while Heyman and Axel talked about whether Axel was sure he could handle things. The vote had Paul Heyman needing to get in the ring with CM Punk if CM Punk won. Paul Heyman froze on the stage after Punk’s victory, then began to retreat, but WWE officials blocked him and made him go. Heyman tried to run backstage, but WWE Security forcibly pushed him to the ring. Just as Heyman was about to receive a beating, Curtis Axel snuck behind Punk and gave him a low blow. Heyman then gave Punk some handcuffs, which Axel used to lock Punk’s hand behind his back. Punk kicked Axel right in the head, and started to lay the boots to Heyman, but Axel took Punk down with a chair. Punk then received a gigantic beat-down with a kendo stick that left him lying down outside the ring. Later on, Renee Young intercepted Axel and an emotional Paul Heyman for their reaction about what happened. Heyman said that CM Punk now knew to never come up against Paul Heyman. The two got in their vehicle and left. Later on, CM Punk confronted Brad Maddox about a match with Paul Heyman where Heyman can’t escape. Maddox made a handicap match for Night of Champions – elimination handicap, and if Heyman tries to get out of the match, he’s banned from WWE.
The Miz came out during the match between Fandango and Cody Rhodes and danced (poorly) to Fandango’s theme. That allowed Rhodes to get the victory, which led to Damien Sandow to come from the announce table and begin to brawl with Cody. Miz took the opportunity to attack Fandango. Brad Maddox came out to the ramp and immediately went to a tag match between the four, with the obvious teams. At the end of the tag match, Fandango bailed on Sandow, then said his name after Sandow ate the loss.
Before the Divas match, one of the women that basically only appears on Total Divas, JoJo, was the special guest ring announcer. After the match, AJ Lee came out and and mockingly recapped the most recent (well, for that Monday) episode of Total Divas. AJ said that when she looked in the ring, she called all of them cheap, expendable, useless women who turned to reality TV because they weren’t gifted enough to be actresses, and aren’t talented enough to be champion. The Bellas and Eva Marie yelled loudly about something or other. AJ talked about she’s accomplished plenty, and apparently it’s for nothing, because nobody in the Divas division shows her any respect. She said that she dedicated her life to wrestling, while the seven women in front of her used shortcuts to get fifteen minutes of fame. She said that they were all pointless, and none of them would ever be able to touch her.
Josh Matthews was backstage to interview Ryback about his recent bullying. Ryback simply physically intimidated Matthews, then said he found a way to shut up Matthews.
To start out a match between Rob Van Dam and Alberto Del Rio, Ricardo Rodriguez came out as RVD’s personal ring announcer. Ricardo even took off his jacket and showed off a new Rob Van Dam t-shirt.
On the top of the ramp, Zeb Colter insulted the Prime Time Players and people in line for welfare, talking about how O’Neill and Young must have been in families on welfare.
A promo video from The Wyatt Family played. He talked in supposedly cryptic phrases, but he was basically spouting nonsense. It was basically an explanation of who Sister Abigail was, or at least some background about why he keeps referring to her.
Main Event
Joining Josh Matthews at the announcers’ table, we saw Alex Riley in the role that he fills on Superstars, and which his former mentor The Miz filled on Main Event for a long stretch.
SmackDown
The show opened with MizTV. The Miz welcomed out The Big Show. He then brought out Dolph Ziggler. Miz noted that all three of them wre forced to watch Daniel Bryan’s gauntlet match without saying or doing anything in protest. He noted that their jobs were at risk if they did anything. Miz said that it was time for their opinions to be heard. Big Show started, saying it was hard to watch. Dolph said that Show could finish his thought. Miz started to say something, but Triple H came to the ring. He asked why everybody wanted to make things personal, when he was doing what is best for business. He talked up Randy Orton the same way he has before. He thought that it would be a good time to placate all three men. He put Miz in a match with Orton, put Ziggler in a handicap match against The Shield, and he made Big Show watch the rest of the show from the announcer’s table without getting involved. He then said that the first match would be Miz against Orton.
We then started the fallout of the opening segment, with The Miz being in his first match against a WWE Champion in a long time, Miz got in a lot of offense. When he managed to get a big advantage, The Shield came to the ring, causing the match momentum to shift. Although they didn’t actually do anything physical during the match, they di attack Miz after the match, which led to Daniel Bryan coming out and swinging a chair to make the save. Later on, Vickie Guerrero had Daniel Bryan come in to her office, called him a bully, and said that bullies get bullied back. Ryback came in, called Bryan a few derogatory names, and implied that they had a match scheduled. The Shield baited The Big Show at ring side, then gave Dolph Ziggler the three-man power bomb. The main event between Ryback and Daniel Bryan saw Ryback throwing around his weight, but the moment that Daniel Bryan began to gain the advantage, Randy Orton came out, distracting Bryan. Randy Orton interfered when Bryan got Orton in the Yes! Lock, and got put in the Yes! Lock himself. The Shield made the save, but Big Show chased them off. Triple H came out, and demanded that he leave the ring. Show reluctantly complied, and then got sent to the back. That allowed Randy Orton and The Shield to administer a beat-down. After that, Randy Orton pulled out a can of spray paint, and put a big black, “NO!” on Bryan’s chest, nWo style.
In the ring, we had Intercontinental Champion Curtis Axel and Paul Heyman on the microphone. Axel said that on RAW, Heyman performed a brave act. They showed Heyman’s assault on CM Punk from RAW. He asked what the fans wanted, because he wasn’t going to apologize, because it was the fans’ fault. He said that the reason that CM Punk has always been staring at the lights, or directly up at Paul Heyman, was because since Punk lost the WWE Championship, Punk hasn’t always been following Heyman’s advice, and now, Punk was alone. He then said that no matter what, CM Punk was going to lose at Night of Champions.
Before his one-on-one match, Damien Sandow gave a speech about how he is the future World Heavyweight Champion, implying that whether or not his opponent, Rob Van Dam won the title, Sandow would be champion some day. He told the fans, “You’re welcome.” After the match, World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio came out and told RVD that he didn’t deserve his title shot. He also got in a memorable line: “You may have Rolling Thunder, but I’m going to make it rain – on your parade.” He said he was going to leave Night of Champions as champion, and finished with that.

The Wrestling

RAW
Cody Rhodes def. Fandango via pin fall with a roll up following distraction from The Miz
The Miz & Cody Rhodes def. Damien Sandow & Fandango via pin fall after a Skull Crushing Finale on Sandow
CM Punk def. Intercontinental Champion Curtis Axel via pin fall after a Go To Sleep
Rob Van Dam def. Campeon Mundial de Peso Completo (World Heavyweight Champion) Alberto Del Rio via pin fall with a body scissors roll-up to become the #1 Contender
WWE Champion Randy Orton def. Christian via pin fall after an RKO
Titus O’Neil (w/ Darren Young) def. Jack Swagger (w/ Zeb Colter & Antonio Cesaro) via pin fall after a choke bomb
Gauntlet Match: Daniel Bryan def. The Shield. 1st Fall: def. Seth Rollins via pin fall after a diving head butt. 2nd Fall: def. Dean Ambrose via DQ. 3rd Fall: def. Roman Reigns via DQ.
Main Event
Intercontinental Champion Curtis Axel def. Cody Rhodes via pin fall after the modified neck breaker
The Prime Time Players (Titus O’Neil & Darren Young) def. The Real Americans (Jack Swagger & Antonio Cesaro) via pin fall after a Clash of the Titus sit-out spine buster on Jack Swagger
Kofi Kingston def. Fandango via DQ when Summer Rae grabbed Kofi’s ankle
SmackDown
WWE Champion Randy Orton def. The Miz via pin fall after hitting an RKO following a rope hang jaw dropper
Rob Van Dam def. Money in the Bank Holder (WHC) Damien Sandow via pin fall with a Five Star Frog Splash
The Shield def. Dolph Ziggler via pin fall after a spear from Roman Reigns
The Wyatt Family (Erik Rowan & Luke Harper) def. Tons of Funk (Brodus Clay & Tensai) via pin fall
Daniel Bryan def. Ryback via DQ after Randy Orton interrupted a Yes! Lock

What Worked

RAW
The contest between Orton and Christian proves exactly why Randy Orton was the one that fought with Christian him over the World Heavyweight Championship a few years back. The two men can go in to a match and deliver a competition that, even though it might not be the best match ever, is still solidly entertaining. This felt like something similar to the rivalry between Wade Barrett and Daniel Bryan. The post-match reveal was great, and even Michael Cole’s cheesy “Cadillac YES-calade” pun was great. Hey, at least Randy can go through a car wash so he can drive it. The repercussions were predictable, but it was interesting enough. Come to that, where the opening segment failed, the rest of the show centering around the WWE Championship was huge. Eventually, we’re definitely going to see the company divide, and Triple H is going to have a rebellion on his hands. Remember when Triple H had a mass walk-out happen to him?
Damien Sandow on commentary was quite effective, and The Miz coming out to some incredibly spastic dancing was a nice little interlude, especially with the technicolor tights and vest. The tag match was also a decent in-ring contest, even with Fandango’s pride getting in the way of a victory. I actually love how much Damien Sandow’s hubris keeps costing him, because it was actually against somebody who he was bullying. This is the difference between his rivalry with Sheamus and his current story – Sheamus kept proving Sandow right with his actions, while in this case, Sandow is a total jerk for no valid reason.
The match between RVD and ADR was entertaining, and the setup and pay-off to it was great. Ricardo Rodriguez is becoming more like a ringside manager than a personal ring announcer for RVD, but however you slice it, it’s a great way to add some intrigue to the match between Del Rio and Van Dam. I also like that they’re actually getting over such a low-impact move as a body scissors pin as a match ender. Van Dam’s taken a lot of punishment during his career, so if he can find a way to end matches without having to use the Five Star Frog Splash every time, I’m all for it.
That promo that AJ Lee made was all kinds of confusing. She said exactly what every single person that doesn’t watch Total Divas thinks about the way that the show was being promoted. The crowd loved her for saying it. She actually came across a little bit like a female Daniel Bryan, with her emphasis on how she wanted to be a wrestler, not a celebrity. So is AJ Lee good or bad here? Whatever the case was, that was great, and it voiced the displeasure that many in the WWE Universe have at the current state of the Divas division. I don’t care if I was confused, my eyeballs were pointed directly at the screen the whole time.
Main Event
Alex Riley on color commentary was a nice little toss-up, especially with the way he covered Josh Matthews’ botches a few times. His experience with a relatively untried announcer on Superstars seems to be a boon to his skills. He is actually better behind the announce desk than I think he ever was as an active competitor.
As is usual for Main Event,, the wrestling really made me wonder why they can’t do this sort of thing on every show. We see the in-ring work that we could be getting, and we see that you can tell a story briefly in between. Sure, the WWE is an entertainment company, but they’re an entertainment company based upon a wrestling ring.
Good call on the referee for noting the blatant interference. It’s nice to see that WWE is allowing its officials to have some credibility lately.
SmackDown
As much as I hated Triple H’s presence, the fallout from the man’s decisions was compelling. Seeing a large man reduced to complete and utter impotence because he needs the job was something that makes me care about Triple H when even Daniel Bryan’s involvement doesn’t make me care. Randy Orton needing The Shield to do his dirty work was all kinds of interesting, because it basically highlights the idea that Orton wasn’t working with Triple H when he cashed in the Money in the Bank contract. The fans went from cheering Orton a little bit to unanimously chanting, “Randy Sucks!” If The Shield and Orton are now a four-man wrecking crew, it makes me wonder when the dam is going to break.
This was basically a one-story show, but I was glad that we got some other stuff on the show. Heyman might keep using “prodigal” wrong (everybody does), but that worked. I am invested in this story, and have been since Heyman cost CM Punk the Money in the Bank contract.
Along with the Heyman/Punk rivalry, the other interesting, if briefly featured, aspect was the rivalry that they’ve built between Rob Van Dam and Alberto Del Rio. The story is fairly simple – RVD has Alberto’s former announcer in his corner, Alberto vies himself as a hero that can overcome anything with enough on the line, and we get a match. I don’t know how they’re going to keep it going until Night of Champions, but this time around I’m not sure I care. It’s a rivalry between Ricardo and Alberto, with RVD as Ricardo’s avatar. That works for me.
Save for the Wyatt Family match, all of the wrestling was at least decent. Unsurprisingly, the best match of the night featured the WWE Champion.

Needs Work

RAW
That opening segment dragged a little bit. Most of it was basically a recycled script. Sure, what was there was still true, and it was entertaining enough, but at some point, they really need to learn how much is effective, and how much is filler. It’s a good thing Bryan was there to save the segment, but it still isn’t enough to make me put this in the plus column.
The Wyatts had so much promise. What happened? They seem to have pretty much no interest to me anymore, partly because their in-ring work is uninspiring, but partly because they seem directionless.
The Divas match completely and utterly sucked. The only good part was JoJo as the ring announcer.
The Bellas shoud learn to SHUT UP. THEY RUINED THE SEGMENT by their shouting and BS. Okay, actually, no, they didn’t, because AJ Lee talked over them. But you know what I mean. They ruin everything, and it was no different here.
Main Event
Why in the world did they bother to have that tag match on Main Event? I know that I say that because it’s the only over-the-air broadcast of WWE during the week (at least until Saturday Morning SLAM returns later this month), it’s a bigger show than many would imply, but you really should have the third out of three victories in a tag team domination happen on one of the main shows.
SmackDown
And this entire week has proven that Triple H seems to be a black hole as far as fan enthusiasm and segment worth. MizTV was actually gearing up to be decent, and then he came out, and the segment went in to retread territory. I don’t care that they’re showing me how Triple H is abusing his power, or that it’s the most I’ve cared about The Miz in the ring in a long time, because this was getting old when it was Triple H, Vince, and Stephanie all at odds.
Did you read my comment about the Wyatts that I already made? Lather, rinse, repeat. Beating a second-tier team like Tons of Funk is not a direction, it’s a holding pattern.
Similarly, as far as the Divas go, a replay of what happened on another show does not count as featuring a certain division. The WWE has proven that they can make content for the Divas on RAW, Main Event, and SmackDown, so when they fail to do that on a given week, it sticks out.
Wrap Up Continues On Page 2

Nicholas Villarreal

Game Review/News Editor at iGame Responsibly
Nicholas Villarreal is a seasoned writer on the staff of iGame Responsibly, covering breaking news, as well as game reviews.

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