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WWE Wrestlemania 34
by Scrooge McSuck
(April 8th, 2018)
- Presented LIVE on the WWE Network from the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, LA, it's time for WRESTLEMANIA! Michael Cole and Jonathon Coachman are here to represent Raw, Tom Phillips and Byron Saxton represent Smackdown Live, Vic Joseph and Nigel McGuinness are here for the Cruiserweights, and Corey Graves is being overworked. If I missed anyone that will be calling the action tonight, I don't care at this point. This little bit shouldn't eat up a full paragraph! With a promised 13-match card, this should be a 6 ½ hour show including the 2-hour Kickoff, so I'm getting myself mentally prepared for the long night.
5th Annual Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal
Participants: Matt Hardy, Kane, Baron Corbin, Dolph Ziggler, Mojo Rawley, Zack Ryder, Scott Dawson, Dash Wilder, Tye Dillinger, Tyler Breeze, Fandango, Goldust, Heath Slater, Rhyno, Primo, Shelton Benjamin, Chad Gable, Aiden English, Sin Cara, Viktor, Konnor, Curt Hawkins, Apollo, Titus O'Neil, Bo Dallas, Curtis Axel, R-Truth, Mike Kanellis, Luke Gallows, and Karl Anderson
Who will join the Cesaro, Big Show, Baron Corbin, and Mojo Rawley in the record books? No entrances for anyone, and no Elias despite the advertised appearance. I'm disappointed, we didn't get a surprise participant. Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler, and Byron Saxton calling it. Aiden English gets the honors of 1st man out. I would've put money on Curt Hawkins taking that one. Konnor by Karl Anderson. Curt Hawkins by Fandango. R-Truth and Goldust dance with each other, then Goldust tosses him and dabs. Primo by Mike Kanellis (looking like he's in better shape). Kanellis by Sin Cara. Tyler Breeze by Shelton Benjamin. Viktor by Rhyno. Zack Ryder sets up for the Broski Boot and gets launched by Mojo for our 1st significant spot at 6:45. Karl Anderson by Chad Gable. Luke Gallows by Titus O'Neill. Commercial from 7:43 through 9:00, but I don't think we missed anything. Apollo by Scott Dawson. Shelton Benjamin by Dash Wilder. Rhyno by the Revival. The Revival by The Miztourage. The Miztourage by Kane (all these eliminations came within 45-seconds). Second highlight is John Cena WATCHING AS A FAN (and we miss Sin Cara launched by Corbin). Fandango by Kane. Heath Slater by Corbin. Gable by Kane. Kane and Corbin tease a fight, but the rest of the crew breaks it up. Dolph dumps Titus. Goldust hits Tye with Shattered Dreams but gets tossed by Dolph. Tye and Hardy have a dueling 10/Delete chant until Hardy hits the Twist of fate and tosses the Perfect 10. Kane tosses Dolph. Corbin repeats Mania 32 and tosses Kane from behind. Mojo and Corbin team-up on Hardy, but BRAY WYATT returns from the Lake of Reincarnation (looking the same) and makes the big save, only to eat a End of Days. Oh well, Hardy tosses Mojo at 16:00, then Corbin at 16:27, to win the match at 16:34 (even the ring announcer had no clue about the legality of Wyatt). They shake hands and pose together to end a confusing match that had very little highlights. Even the commentary was low quality, with J.R. sounding like he wishes he were somewhere else the entire time.
WWE Cruiserweight Championship; Tournament Finals: Cedric Alexander vs. Mustafa Ali
I'm completely shocked this didn't get sent out first, but at least most of the crowd had arrived before the Battle Royal began. Drake Maverick is at ringside to present the Championship to the winner. Ali gets some special ring attire (he's the shining light of good), so you know he's jobbing. Lockup and Alexander with a waist-lock takedown. Ali grabs a side headlock and comes off the ropes with shoulder tackle. They take turns taunting the other about their heart and soul. A shoving match turns into a more aggressive exchange. Alexander with the handspring head scissors and dropkick for two. Whip to the ropes and Ali with a push-off dropkick. He charges into the corner but ends up on the apron. Alexander boots him down and follows with a tope. Alexander slows things down with a few bear-hugs. Ali with a roundhouse kick and rolling X-Factor for two. They trade more strikes until Alexander hits a Spanish Fly. He catches Ali's attempt at a Tornado DDT, straddling him across the top rope. Alexander climbs up with him and they fight for position until Ali takes Cedric off the top rope with a Super-Spanish Fly (John Cena is STUNNED) for two. He tries to position Alexander for 054, but Cedric sends him to the floor (we get a split-screen commercial for WrestleMania at this point). Alexander shows no mercy, booting Ali down and repeatedly stomping across the chest. He sets up for the Lumbar Check, but Ali counters with a reverse-Hurricanrana. Ali springboards off the ropes with a Tornado DDT, setting Alexander perfectly in position in the corner. Ali with the 054, but Alexander gets a foot on the rope. Ali kicks the leg off the ropes and stomps away. He climbs up for the 054 again, but this time meets nothing but canvas. They end up in opposite corners, still taunting each other. Alexander with a pair of rolling elbows to knock Ali into a different zip code. A third turns Ali inside out, and the Lumbar Check connects for the three-count at 12:19 making Cedric Alexander the NEW Cruiserweight Champion. Post-match all appears well between them. The disrespect of being split-screened for an advertisement during one of the key moments of the match drops the rating from what was otherwise a pretty good match (if you watched on the USA Network, there was also a 4-minute commercial after the high-spot on the floor). ***1/2
1st Annual Fabulous Moolah WrestleMania Women's Battle Royal
(Participants: Sasha Banks, Bayley, Liv Morgan, Ruby Riott, Sarah Logan, Natalya, Naomi, Becky Lynch, Lana, Mickie James, Mandy Rose, Sonya Deville, Carmella, and Dana Brooke, Taynara Conti, Dakota Kai, Kairi Sane, Peyton Royce, Bianca Belair, Kavita Devi)
I could've sworn the 1st ever WrestleMania Women's Battle Royal happened at 25
. WWE might as well have named this the Snickers Battle Royal, considering their sponsorship is what forced them to remove Moolah's name from the match. Despite not being advertised, Alicia Fox was sent home for a public altercation with Mr. Rousey. Beth Phoenix and Paige join Cole and Graves for announcing duties. Introductions are a casualty of the USA Network version, as Becky gets her own entrance, and then we get a bunch of geeks all at once, including a bunch of NXT ladies. Bayley and Sasha get separate entrances as well. Carmella flaunts the briefcase and gets gang tossed at 0:29. Dana Brooke gets stuck in the middle and suffers the same fate. The NXT girls work together to clear the ring without eliminating anyone. Becky yells at Devi for wearing orange. Mandy Rose gets tossed at 2:39. Belair needlessly hits Deville with a 450 splash and she's tossed. We take a short break and Sane gets tossed. Lana is next. Logan tosses Devi. Riott Squad toss Conti. Belair whips Lynch with her hair but ends up eliminated at 5:39. Kai misses a Mafia Kick and gets tossed by Banks. Becky and Naomi both appear to be out. Riott Squad work together to eliminate Mickie James and Peyton Royce (and her new friends). The crowd BOOS Bayley saving Sasha and they toss Natalya. Liv Morgan, Ruby Riott, and Sarah Logan are gone in short order, leaving Sasha and Bayley. They try to play nice, but BAYLEY is the jerk who tosses Sasha at 9:15. Wait, NAOMI was never eliminated. She hits Bayley with the Rear View and tosses her at 9:55 for the win. Clusterf*ck at times, but at least STUFF happened. I'm not a fan of babyfaces hiding on the floor in matches like these.
WWE Intercontinental Championship Match: The Miz (c) (w/ The Miztourage) vs. Finn Balor vs. Seth Rollins
I'm just glad we didn't get a whacky multi-man ladder match that crams 8 people into a 10-minute match. Balor and Rollins both scored victories over Miz... on back-to-back matches, to earn their spots, I guess. Miz dismisses his henchmen during his entrance. They open with an extended sequence of roll-up attempts. Non-stop action throughout, and none of the three men taking extended breaks from the match, either. Rollins with a double Block Buster for an early two count. He clears the ring and hits topes on both. Balor gives Rollins a sling-blade but runs into a Super-Kick. Miz with a leg-sweep DDT on Rollins for two. Rollins blocks a Figure-Four attempt but gets booted down going for a springboard. Miz blocks a roundhouse kick from Balor, snapping the leg across the top rope and applying the Figure-Four. Rollins returns with a Frog Splash on Miz for a near fall. Balor avoids a Buckle-Bomb on the floor and hits Rollins with another sling-blade. He nails both Miz and Rollins with a shotgun dropkick into the barricade. Balor hits Rollins with the Pele Kick, and follows with the 1916 for two. Rollins sends Miz into the corner with a Buckle Bomb. Balor counters a Falcon Arrow with a small package for two. Miz with the Skull Crushing Finale on Rollins for two. Rollins straddles Balor to prevent a Coup de Grace attempt. All three fight on the top rope. Miz takes Rollins down with a Super Skull Crushing Finale and Balor hits the pile with a Coup de Grace. Balor with the sling-blade, shotgun dropkick, and Coup de Grace, but as he attempts a cover, Rollins returns with a Curb Stomp. Curb Stomp to Miz, and Rollins is the new IC Champion at 15:32. Great match to start the show properly. I'm a bit surprised they didn't let Miz retain. ****
[Smackdown] Women's Championship Match: Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Asuka
It's Title vs. Streak, Queen vs. Empress... and everyone knows Asuka's walking away as Champion. Asuka won the Women's Rumble Match but opted to challenge for the Smackdown Title rather than her home show of Raw. I didn't expect this one to be so early in the show. Charlotte gets the bigger entrance, so you know the rules. Great back and forth action. Asuka targeted the arm throughout the match, but Charlotte would find ways to escape every submission attempt. We saw two spots that have become big trends in recent weeks: the first being a suplex from the apron to the arena floor (complete with a splat sound) and the other Charlotte hitting a Spanish Fly from the top rope (only the third SF we've seen tonight, and we're only 5 matches into the show). Asuka with one of the better counter sequences, catching Charlotte's moonsault and turning it into a Triangle Choke. Charlotte played the tenacious babyface, gradually wearing Asuka down, and eventually earning the submission with a Figure-Eight, ending Asuka's undefeated streak at 13:05. Post-match, Asuka lets everyone know that Charlotte was ready for Asuka and congratulates her on the victory. Great payoff to another great match, with Charlotte presented as Asuka's toughest opponent, and somehow still sold the underdog role. ****1/4
- A random referee sprints out to inform John Cena that The Undertaker is here, so he hops the rail (fans hopping the rail?!) and sprints to the locker room.
WWE United States Championship Match: Randy Orton (c) vs. Jinder Mahal (w/ Sunil Singh) vs. Bobby Roode vs. Rusev (w/ Aiden English)
I'd like to call this the Cruise Control Match™, since everyone but Rusev has been dialing it in lately, and Rusev is only added because of either strong merch sales (or disgruntled attitude) and to eat the pin. This match is in the bathroom break portion of this section of the card, with little heat for everyone but Rusev. Randy Orton has THE definitive "I'm not winning" face here, so expect a title change. This was a standard house show quality match, with very little big spots and overall a forgettable match. Orton ran wild at the end, hitting RKO's on Aiden English, Rusev, and Jinder Mahal. Roode with the Glorious DDT for two. Rusev with the Machka Kick to Roode and Mahal. He teased the Accolade, but Sunil Singh distracted him from the apron, allowing Mahal to recover and ruin Rusev Day by winning the US Title at 8:15. This is where Mahal should've started, but NO, they had to make him WWE Champion for the better part of 2017 to spectacularly disappointing results. Just a match with stuff happening, but nobody expected something good here to begin with. *1/2
Kurt Angle & Ronda Rousey vs. Triple H & Stephanie McMahon
I hate to be that guy
, but Rousey has been a lousy on-screen character with awkward delivery. Hunter and Stephanie come out on their motorcycles, and Stephanie's water-spit leaves a bit to be desired. To be fair, Hunter has had nearly 20-years to perfect that spot of his entrance, so I won't be too harsh. Cole with the line of the night, noting the shape Rousey is in. As if she sat at home eating Jell-O for a year and not working out. Stephanie with a pre-match pie-face AND hair pull. Triple H turns the clock back to 2002, taking the entire match out of the gate. They did a good job cutting the ring off and milking it before Rousey got to tag in. Rousey tags in ("Call the cops!") and throws Stephanie into the ring. She does a big sequence of tying Steph up before hitting a back suplex and pummels her in the corner. She works in the "removing your hair from my fingers" spot. Rousey with an easy takedown into a mounted position. Stephanie fights for a counter and opts to rake the eyes. Stephanie with a knee and DDT for two. Rousey comes back with a Samoan Drop, but Hunter saves. Angle continues to be his punching bag, being thrown across an announcer's table. Rousey returns from her coma to step up to Hunter. He sells for her more than Angle, and Steph has to make the save. Angle FINALLY gets some real offense, throwing Hunter with belly-to-belly's and the rolling Germans. They go back and forth countering their finishers until Angle hits the Olympic Slam for a near fall. Stephanie saves, earning herself an Ankle Lock. Hunter with the Pedigree, but Rousey saves, takes Hunter over with a hurricanrana, and locks in the arm-bar. Stephanie from behind with a rear-naked Choke, but Rousey fights out and hooks the arm-bar on her. Hunter uses Angle's momentum of escaping the Ankle Lock to break the hold. Both escape Pedigree attempts, and they milk it before Rousey fully hooks the arm-bar for the quick tap-out at 20:40. I was expecting disaster and this turned out to be very entertaining, with the usual smoke and mirrors. I guess I shouldn't mention the referee ignoring the ridiculous notion like tagging in and out. ***1/2
[Smackdown] Tag Team Championship Match: The Usos vs. The New Day (w/ Xavier Woods) vs. The Bludgeon Brothers
After all these years and at least 4 Kickoff Show appearances, the Usos get a spot on the main portion of the card (even though every match is advertised as part of WrestleMania, so logic in wrestling, yeah?). The repackaged Harper and Rowan spoiled a match at Fastlane to set this up. New Day's entrance includes large stacks of pancakes and unicorns. Woods plays a jolly note summoning a group of Short Stacks. Kofi hits an Uso with Trouble in Paradise seconds in. The Bludgeon Brothers clean house on the floor, including giving Woods a buckle-bomb against the post. Jey Uso gets casually dumped out. Jimmy tags himself in and hits Harper with a pair of Super-Kicks. Harper kicked out of a Super-Kick and Splash Combo. Rowan blocks a double suicide dive but ends up taking a double suplex on the floor. Harper avoids the Midnight Hour and hits a side-walk slam on Kofi. The Usos with a double super-Kick on Harper. Rowan breaks up a Tower of Doom spot, knocking both Usos out and dumping Big E. Rowan with a Powerbomb on Kofi, and Harper finishes with a Super Liger-Bomb for the Tag Team Titles at 5:50. These referees need to keep order with the tagging in and out. Short and non-stop action. Nothing we'll remember at the end of the day, but a solid match. **1/2
- John Cena comes out for his match with the Undertaker, but he's not here. The lights go out... and ELIAS comes out for the ultimate troll job. Cena decides to take a walk and return to his seat with the WWE Universe. John Cena doesn't take kindly to being told he sucks and hits Elias with his Five-Moves of Doom. The lights go out again, and we see the mist creeping up. Suddenly, the camera pans the ring, where Undertaker's gear from last year suddenly appears. A terrible lightning bolt graphic appears and strikes the pile, sending them back to Death Valley. The bell tolls and the man from the Dark Side arrives.
The Undertaker (23-2) vs. John Cena
Did anyone honestly expect this wouldn't take place? So much for the ending to last year's WrestleMania. Undertaker unloads with strikes in the corner to start. He hits the ropes hard and connects with the diving lariat. He wastes no time going Old School. Undertaker with snake eyes, a big boot, and leg drop. Cena counters a Chokeslam, taking Taker down with a back suplex. Taker sits up during the 5-Knuckle Shuffle and plants Cena with a Chokeslam. The straps come down and Taker hits the Tombstone Piledriver for three at 2:45. Holy crap, they had Undertaker squash John Cena at WrestleMania. I guess that was the perfect way to pay off Troll John Cena. No rating, but this was as satisfying as it gets for Undertaker fans.
- Introducing the 2018 Hall of Famers: Goldberg, The Dudley Boyz, Jeff Jarrett, Mark Henry, Hillbilly Jim, Ivory, Jarrius "JJ" Robertson (Warrior Award) and Kid Rock (Celebrity). Among the names inducted into the "Legacy" wing include Lord Alfred Hayes, Boris Malenko, El Santo and Stan Stasiak, among others.
Daniel Bryan & Shane McMahon vs. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
After nearly three years, DANIEL BRYAN IS BACK IN THE RING. KO and Zayn must win, or they're fired for good. So Shane's turning, right? Bryan gets the left-over Terminator entrance from 31, except scanning the "Yes! Movement". Zayn dumps Shane in front of his family, including Linda! Helluva Kick to Bryan, followed by the ring apron Powerbomb from Owens, taking him out for the time being. Shane with pathetic strikes on Owens, including falling on his ass with a pump kick. Shane's Miracle Movement™ runs out of steam and gets pounded on. Owens with A+ taunting of Bryan, who is still being tended to on the floor. Shane's "I trained a day and a half at BJJ" offense is beyond awful. Zayn hits the Blue Thunder Bomb for a near fall. Zayn finds himself in a tree of woe and Shane somehow hits the Coast-to-Coast. Owens with the save and a Frog Splash, but Bryan makes the save to wake the comatose crowd up. Bryan with the hot tag and takes his time coming in. He lays into Zayn with rights, flips over him in the corner, and comes off the ropes with a diving clothesline. Baseball slide to Owens, followed by a flying knee. Missile dropkick to Zayn, but he briefly sells the head. Owens gets dumped on his head and Bryan runs wild with the corner dropkicks. Zayn begs for mercy and gets none. Bryan with a top rope hurricanrana. Owens hooks the ankle, allowing Zayn to hit the Helluva Kick for a near fall. Owens with the Pop-Up Powerbomb for two. Bryan makes his own comeback, running wild on Zayn with strikes. He unloads with the Yes! Kicks, hits the running knee and finishes with the Yes! Lock at 15:25. The first half was so bad, it actually hurt Bryan's comeback, but the crowd woke up enough for it to not be a disaster. Shane really needs to step away as an in-ring performer, and this is nothing to do with his recent medical trouble. **
[Raw] Women's Championship Match: Alexa Bliss (c) (w/ Mickie James) vs. Nia Jax
The long-anticipated feud between Bliss and Jax comes down to body shaming (of course). Seriously, if this isn't a 2-minute squash match, WWE forgot how to tell the easiest of stories. Bliss gets the big entrance, but my theories have been out the window tonight. Jax bulldozes James before the bell and ragdolls her on the floor. Bliss opens with a desperation slap. Nia roars and Alexa screams. Jax picks up on Bliss where she left off on Mickie, tossing her around with ease. Jax with a sloppy press slam, sending Bliss to the floor. She tries taking a walk, but Nia lays her out with a clothesline. Bliss goes to the eye and chops away with low kicks and double knees across the leg. Bliss comes off the top with Twisted Bliss to the floor. Back inside, Bliss with a basement dropkick and short DDT for a near fall. Bliss slaps Jax around one time too many and gets planted with a slam. Jax blocks a flying head scissors and counters Code Red with a wheel barrow slam into the turnbuckle. Bliss escapes a Samoan Drop attempt by going for the eyes. Jax counters another DDT with the Alabama Slam. Jax climbs the ropes with Bliss on her back and hits a Super Samoan Drop for three at 9:01 to win the Raw Women's Title. For a babyface Goliath match, this went a little too long, but the right person went over. **1/2
WWE Championship Match: A.J. Styles (c) vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
As hyped as I am for the match itself, there hasn't been that much build to this other than "should be an awesome match." Nak has tried to play mind games over the last couple of months, but Fastlane really dragged things out for Smackdown's build to WrestleMania. Nakamura gets played to the ring by Nita Strauss ("Alice Cooper's guitarist") and a bunch of other people. Lockup into the ropes and Nakamura with a shove out of the corner. Styles with a takedown. Nakamura quickly boots him away and taunts him against the ropes, earning a slap. Crisscross and Nakamura with a jumping roundhouse for two. Nakamura with knees to the midsection but Good Vibrations is countered. Styles with a knee to the face, asking Nak how he liked a knee to the face. Styles with a snap suplex into a cover for a one-count. Styles with a back breaker, snap mare and kicks to the spine. He comes off the ropes with a jumping knee drop for two. Whip to the ropes and Styles with a dropkick, sending Nakamura to the floor. Nakamura avoids the kick and sweeps Styles' legs, causing him to smash face-first onto the canvas.
Back inside, Nakamura with a pair of leg strikes and a flying one-foot dropkick. Nakamura unloads with more strikes, positions Styles across the top rope, and drives a running knee into the midsection for two. Nakamura with a gourd buster. Styles hooks the ropes to avoid an Exploder and hits a sit-out face-buster. Styles dives into the corner with a clothesline and follows with a sliding forearm for two. Styles with a pump-handle stomach buster for two. Nakamura blocks a Styles Clash attempt, sending Styles to the apron. Phenomenal Forearm is countered with a sit-out Death Valley Driver for two. Nakamura positions Styles across the top rope but Styles slides between the legs. Nakamura escapes trouble with short rights, but gets the knee clipped. The leg gives out on a suplex and Styles traps Nakamura in the Calf Crusher. Nakamura counters into a Triangle Choke. Styles manages to power Nakamura off the canvas and escapes with a modified brain buster.
The back gives out on Styles as he attempts the Styles Clash. Nakamura with the spinning roundhouse kick, but with the bad leg, and he's having trouble following up. He hoists Styles across the top rope again but misses the knee. Styles springboards off the top rope and hits the Phenomenal Forearm for a near fall. Styles meets the knees going for the springboard 450 and Nakamura cradles him for two. They struggle to their feet, throwing headbutts, then forearms. Styles with the Phenomenal Blitz and Pele Kick, and Nakamura returns fire with a knee to the back of the head for two. Nakamura with more knees and a reverse Exploder. He sets up in the corner for the Kinshasa, but Styles sweeps the legs and hits the Styles Clash to retain at 20:21. Post-match, Nakamura presents Styles with the belt... and hits him below the belt. I did not see that coming. Nakamura stomps Styles out of the ring and hits him with Kinshasa to drive the point home. The crowd is clearly on their last legs, and these two had unreasonable expectations set. The work was as good as you could hope for on a normal night, but it fell below the mark. ***3/4
[Raw] Tag Team Championship Match: The Bar (c) vs. Braun Strowman & ???
Strowman single-handedly won a geek Tag Team Battle Royal, but he MUST have a partner to make such a thing legal. Sheamus and Cesaro come out with the left-overs from the Exotic Express (no, not really, but how often can I make that reference?!). Braun scares off the goofy characters on the float and sends the float crashing off the stage. After all the speculation, Strowman suggest his partner is one of the fans in the crowd and fetches a child named Nicholas
. He tells the kid to stay on the apron while he does all the work. Strowman dominates as the crowd chants for the kid. Strowman with a chokeslam on Cesaro for two. The Bar come together to take Strowman over with a double suplex. They hit the Tower of Quebec for two. Strowman makes his own comeback (of course) and teases hot tagging the kid. Cole screaming "Nicholas is legal" might be the funniest unintentional line of all-time. Strowman tags right back in and catches Cesaro with the Power-Slam to win the Tag Team Titles at 3:59, making Nicholas the youngest champion in WWE History™. I don't even know how to rate this.
WWE Universal Championship Match: Brock Lesnar (c) (w/ Paul Heyman) vs. Roman Reigns
Seth Rollins doesn't have a briefcase to cash in, and Hulk Hogan is long past the point of coming back for in-ring action, so there shouldn't be any shenanigans where a non-advertised member of the roster walks away the top Champion in the company. The story of "Boo Lesnar, he's a Part-Timer" isn't the most compelling, but kudos for trying to get people behind Roman. Lesnar backs Reigns into the corner, driving shoulders to the midsection. Roman with a shove and a few strikes, but Lesnar regains control with his usual series of suplexes. Roman is back up, hitting Lesnar with a pair of Superman Punches. He follows Lesnar to the floor and hits a third off the ring steps. Back inside, Roman with a clothesline to knock him over the top rope. Lesnar catches Reigns coming off the steps with a release belly-to-belly suplex. Lesnar with a second, dumping Reigns on his head. I don't know what he was trying there, but he ended up throwing Roman face-first onto the table. Lesnar with more suplexes, as expected. Lesnar strips down one of the tables in ultra-jerk style. Reigns slips out of an F5, sending Lesnar into the post. Reigns tackles Lesnar over the announcer's table, and for some reason, Cole's voice seemed extra amplified for a moment. Back inside, Roman with a Superman Punch and two Spears for two. Reigns goes for a third, but Lesnar counters with a knee to the face. Lesnar with the F-5 for two. Another F-5 for two. Lesnar's 3rd F-5 still can't finish the job. To the floor and Lesnar with an F-5 through the German announcer's table. F-5 #5, and Reigns keeps kicking out. This crowd isn't hating Roman, they're hating the booking. Lesnar with elbows, opening Reigns up hard way. Reigns escapes an F-5 and hits two more Spears for two. Reigns hits the ropes, only to get hit with the F-5... for three at 15:51? What in the hell was the point of this booking if that was the finish? The wrong guy went over after putting Roman over like Superman. This was your usual Lesnar match, except the crowd turned on him, too. **
Final Thoughts: Despite the long run time, this definitely went by at a better pace with less filler between matches and no 20-minute concerts or promo segments to slow things down to a crawl. The first half of the show seemed like nothing could go wrong, and then it started to fall off a cliff. Killing the crowd with Shane McMahon working a handicap match for 10-minutes, dragging out Nia Jax vs. Alexa Bliss for longer than it needed to be, the goofy comedy surrounding the Raw Tag Titles, and the questionable move to put Brock over Roman made a strong show only a good show with a sour finish. If you missed the live show, I'd recommend watching it in two sittings. I guarantee you'll enjoy the first half a lot more.
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