By Ryan Shol
R Truth over Wade Barrett via pinfall
Pretty much what you’ve seen on TV. R Truth warmed up the crowd to start things off with his freestyle intro. Crowd did give Barrett the reactions he was looking for and booed him often. I dont remember much of this match as it was largely forgettable. Crowd was solidly behind R Truth and loved booing Barrett. Thats about it.
Naomi (with Sasha and Tamina) over Bayley via pinfall after the Rear View
My favorite match as I was interested to see the crowds reaction to the mostly unknown Bayley. A solid match with nothing the level of the NXT Divas work but there were no botches and Naomi and Bayley had good chemistry despite not working together before live. Naomi hit all her moves while Bayley also hit all her spots except the Belly to Bayley. Crowd more engaged for this bell to bell than most the matches on the card.
Story of match was Team B.A.D having no respect for Bayley and laughing in her face at the beginning then using outside interference to maintain a advantage and ultimately secure the win after Sasha distracted the ref who missed the 3 count on a Bayley roll up which led to Bayley knocking Sasha off the apron but turning around into the Rearview.
The crowd easily got behind Bayley and cheered when they were supposed to even when Bayley and Naomi werent working for a reaction. A lot of this card dragged because the guys worked hard for reactions but the crowd just didnt care at all with there being almost no star power on it.
Jack Swagger beat Adam Rose via Submission with the Patriot lock.
Solid Red State North Dakota loved them some Jack Swagger. Rose worked hard to get the crowd to boo him but they were indifferent for most part. Blah
Ryback retained the IC title over Big Show and Miz after Ryback hit the Shellshock on Miz.
Ryback was really popular as the first real star of the evening and the crowd booed Miz when he invited them too which was often. Show got good face heat for the match and there wasnt any “Please Retire” chants which was nice because no one worked harder at being original in their crowd work than Show tonight. Match started with Show and Ryback battling it out while Miz hid outside content to let them weaken one another in the opening minutes. After a while Miz sneaked back into the ring and attacked Ryback from behind and controlled the action with some basic offense and things just stayed the same with 2 of the 3 men fighting each other while the other nursed a injury on apron or outside.
Outside of a Bayley v Naomi match I’ll remember because I’d never see it before, the most memorable thing about tonight was the way Big Show interacted with the crowd. Loudly ordered Ryback to “stop with the feed me more s–t (he said this in character) “.He taunted one guy for wearing a N.W.O shirt to a event in 2015. He gave Miz a chest slap and when the crowd chanted “one more time” he obliged backing Miz into the corner, hushing the crowd, and then sent Miz crumpling to the floor. Say what you will but Show really tried to entertain the crowd and be original. This sums up the card perfectly as it was one of the most unique things that happened all night.
15 minute intermission
Jimmy Uso beat Heath Slater via pinfall after a top rope splash
This “match” was mostly filler to kill time while people returned from intermission. Match ended when Slater challenged Uso to a dance contest which he then proceeded to ham it up for “I’m too sexy”. Slater tried to get a reaction but the crowd basically no sold it. Uso got the crowd back into by doing a pretty good Micheal Jackson impersonation while dancing to “Billie Jean”. Slater got mad at Uso winning so he attacked Jimmy from behind but quickly got a super kick and top rope splash to end this time killer.
Lucha Dragons beat the Ascension when Sin Cara hit a Swanton on Viktor(I think).
Basic match with the heels beating down Sin Cara for most the match and finally the good guys won. Ascension were in the same boat Rose and Slater were in that they worked they butts off to engage the crowd but the crowd just didnt care about them what so ever.
Roman Reigns over Bray Wyatt via pinfall after a spear in a “Fargo street fight”
Crowd was instantly on fire for this match and showed they were ready to have fun tonight if they had been given a decent card with some stars on it. Surprisingly the crowd was overwhelming for Roman. Thought it would be more even but it was like 75%-80% for Roman. Crowd impatiently wanted tables right away. Real good work from both men as they brawled for a while before starting the street fight with a chair. Bray played to the crowd a bit hitting Roman repeatedly with a chair but then teasing one final whack of the chair and when people asked for it just tossing the chair aside and walking away laughing at them. Surprisingly later they did a spot where Roman was crawling out the ring and Bray just threw the chair at his head like RVD used to do in ECW.
Didnt seem Roman fully blocked it and it at least partially hit him in the head. Would be nice to see that spot never done again. Bray grabbed the top part of the ring steps and placed it upright in the aisle to the ring. Bray remarked to my section what “a work of art” it was but Roman reversed his Irish whip attempts and avoided being introduced to Wyatts masterpiece. Roman threw Wyatt in the ring and proceeded to bring out a table from under the ring. Roman ended up getting chokeslammed thru it tho. Next weapon kendo stick Bray enjoyed working Roman over with for awhile before Roman wrestled it away from him and snapped it in half. They brawled some more making their way back towards the upright ring steps and Bray went right thru it in a twist of his ill wishes.
More brawling and another table was introduced this time by Wyatt and like Roman he ended up going thru it after Reigns negated his superplex attempt and powerbombed him thru it. This led to Luke Harper running in to break up a pin attempt and cause people to excitedly clamor for Dean Ambrose to run in ignoring all logic behind why that wasnt going to happen. Luckily Reigns was in Samoan Hulk mode tonight and fought both men off before hitting his spear on Wyatt to win a very fun match. Reigns posed every place he could to make sure anyone who wanted a pic got one and send the crowd home happy.
A weak and very uneven card because of WWE using way too many people that arent on TV or are in irrelevant storylines and people dont have a big emotional investment in them. That being said everyone put in a honest hard nights work and I dont want to bash anyone. It was what it was and the crowd just couldnt build any sustained momentum.