July 03, 2015
We’re a little bit closer to Battleground. A little bit closer to Beast in the East in Japan. And the WWE World Heavyweight Champion, Seth Rollins, has never been booked as strongly as he’s been booked the last two weeks on television.
Thursday night, some of the momentum he carried -- along with his lackies, Kane and J & J Security -- suffered a setback as both Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose destroyed Joey Mercury while Rollins and Jamie Noble headed for safer grounds. Rollins wasn’t exactly looking strong as SmackDown left the air, but I guess completely dominating the main event scene for three straight television programs was getting old.
There’s also two weeks left until Battleground live on the WWE Network, so there’s plenty of time for Rollins and Co. to gain the momentum they lost Thursday night.
Speaking of The Authority, is there a way someone can let Rollins know we’ve been best friends forever? Those Apple Watches, tho.
Here are some of the stories coming out of SmackDown:
I really enjoyed Rollins’ opening promo as he really hammered home the fact that he completely destroyed -- with help, of course -- both of the men involved in this year’s WrestleMania main event. He conquered the conqueror. He slayed the beast.
No good nicknames for Reigns, though.
Speaking of Reigns, Rollins booked himself in a match against him in the night’s main event. It sounded like a great main event, but it's very unlike Rollins to seem so eager for a match.
And then, we found out why.
It was never certain Reigns would even make it to the arena because nobody had seen or heard from him since he was decimated on Raw.
But he would arrive. And should’ve been counted out, honestly.
The bell rang to signify the beginning of the match and Reigns’ music hit at the seven second mark thanks to Noble’s fantastic counting skills. Maybe if Reigns got into the ring within the three seconds after that, we would have no controversy. But I think Rollins should have won by countout. Because rules. Oh, well.
Too bad Kane wasn’t around, as he’s been in Tokyo [storyline wise]. No chance for the heels here without Kane. That shows you who the real M.V.P. of The Authority is.
They better be in it for the long haul, though.
Bray Wyatt probably gave one of his best promos of his feud with Reigns Thursday night.
“The real Roman Reigns has too many people that he loves. Too many people that he cares for. It makes you weak. Me? I have no one. And I’ve never had anything since I’ve been alive on this planet. That makes me strong. And I will make you a promise, right now, just you and me, man. Everything that you love in this world, I’m gonna burn it all down around you until there is nothing left. Until it is just you standing home alone. And then, I will show you the ultimate mercy. I will finish you then. Anyone but you, Roman. Anyone but you. Run.”
This feud has really drawn more and more interest out of me as the weeks have passed by.
Originally, I hated the idea of both of these guys going against each other because I thought it was making Reigns look weak. The creative promos and angles built into this storyline so far have grasped my attention and made me appreciate the angle a bit more than I originally had. I still don’t see a good outcome because either Wyatt or Reigns has to lose, and neither can afford to lose at this point.
But, according to WWE, nobody will remember it come August, so why the hell not?
Every time I see Ryback hit a bigger wrestler with Shell-Shocked, it leaves me shocked. No pun intended.
Honestly, it probably shouldn’t anymore. Ryback has given his finish to Big Show and Mark Henry before, but I still am amazed every time I see him do it. I can’t even explain it. I think his incredible strength is so underrated by the masses that it never comes across just how strong he is on television.
And after his match with Henry on Thursday night, Ryback gave a great promo backstage that involved some continuity!
Unfortunately, his latest two challengers are completely under the radar in terms of interest, as nobody cares for Show or Miz. Not even me. Not even my mom. Not even my cat. Nobody. Nothing.
The best thing for Ryback would probably be an extended feud with someone like Henry or someone that could get some good matches out of him and bring back some more importance to the Intercontinental Championship. Didn’t you know Ryback was Intercontinental Champion? The way he’s booked, you’d think it’s a secondary story to Ryback the person.
I’m kind of surprised at this point; there is no opponent for Ambrose at Battleground. This got me thinking as to who would be a good opponent for him at the special event.
Henry is so terribly underrated that I often wonder why WWE hasn’t utilized his acting talent for bigger and better storylines. Sure, he had that amazing angle with then-WWE Champion, John Cena, two years ago with his fake retirement, but Henry is so good in his role that I think he can do so much more than what he’s being given. SmackDown on Thursday night was just another example of how Henry can make anything feel legitimate, as his promo before his match with Ryback was on point. No dancing around, no joking, just pure unadulterated hate for Ryback. We’re missing that from today’s professional wrestling. It’s quite refreshing. But it won’t last.
So why not have Henry attack Ambrose on Raw next Monday? Set up a quick two week feud and give the two something to do. I think they’d have a pretty good match, given that Henry has had some great matches in his career, and putting him with Ambrose would only elevate both of them. Of course, Ambrose should win, but at this point, I think a match between the two is something cool and different. Put the Lunatic Fringe against Sheamus, or even Kane, and I think a potential Ambrose match suffers a bit more. Sheamus and Ambrose have wrestled before and while I think another match between the two would be excellent, there’s something about seeing Ambrose vs. Henry that I really want to see. I don’t even think I know why.
I can’t lie. I love this Lana/Rusev angle. It’s grown tremendously on me, and I think it’s because of Rusev’s acting, or overacting at times, that’s making this gold to me. With Summer Rae’s inclusion into the angle now, I think it can only get better. It’s like Rusev doesn’t know what to do without Lana, so he thinks having Rae by his side will make her jealous. It’s literally middle school playing out in front of our eyes. Rusev called Rae a real woman who isn’t afraid to speak out when the time is right, but also a woman who knows her place. Geez. He even called Lana a “blonde-headed witch.”
Summer Rae is no Lana! Even if unable to compete inside the ring, Rusev is probably one of the most entertaining superstars on the main roster right now. Fantastic stuff by him.
And if I was Dolph Ziggler, I’d stay away from the Bulgarian Brute. Probably because he threatened to crush Ziggler’s skull, eat his heart, pull out his intestines and hang him to dry in his own backyard. But the best part about that promo was when he said he had a “better Lana” now. Whoops. “Better woman.”
Lana was unimpressed.
So was R-Truth.
What’s happened to Naomi? She was on a three-week tear as the hottest Diva in the company not too long ago. Oh, wait. That’s probably what happened. You’re not allowed to usurp Nikki.
• Bray Wyatt d. Dean Ambrose by pinfall via Sister Abigail.
• R-Truth d. Adam Rose by pinfall via the Lie Detector.
• Non-Title: Ryback (c-IC) d. Mark Henry by pinfall via Shell-Shocked.
• Brie Bella d. Naomi by pinfall via a facebuster. Naomi was distracted due to outside interference by Alicia Fox.
• Non-Title: Prime Time Players (c-Tag) d. The Ascension by pinfall after Titus O’Neil hit Konnor with the Clash of the Titus.
• Non-Title: Roman Reigns d. Seth Rollins (c) by disqualification after J & J Security attacked Reigns.
We’re a day away from our nation’s independence. And from WWE’s supershow in Tokyo, Japan entitled, “Beast in the East.” Here’s the current card, which as always, is subject to change:
• Brock Lesnar vs. Kofi Kingston
• NXT Championship: Kevin Owens (c) vs. Finn Balor
• John Cena (c-US) and Dolph Ziggler vs. Kane and King Barrett
• Chris Jericho vs. Neville
• Triple Threat Match for the Divas Championship: Nikki Bella (c) vs. Paige vs. Tamina
• The Lucha Dragons (Kalisto and Sin Cara) vs. The New Day (Big E and Xavier Woods)
• Cesaro vs. Diego (Why? End rant.)
We’ll have a complete review of “Beast in the East” right here at PhillyVoice.com Saturday morning!