While Sean usually takes charge of the recaps, I am stepping in for the night. Sean happened to attend the show live in Albany, New York, so maybe he can write his reaction from a live perspective!
The show was overall what most expected. WWE Extreme Rules was the night before, so as usual we saw a few re-matches, some feuds continue and the debut of Axel Rose. The biggest take away for me was the amount of quality matches we saw.
Quick in-ring results:
Sheamus wins the WWE United States Championship in a 20-Man Battle Royal
Rob Van Dam defeated Cesaro by disqualification
Ryback defeated Cody Rhodes by pinfall
Alexander Rusev defeated Kofi Kingston by submission
Daniel Bryan defeated Alberto Del Rio by submission
Bad News Barrett defeated Big E by pinfall to retain the WWE Intercontinental Championship
The Wyatt Family defeated the Shield by pinfall when Bray Wyatt pinned Roman Reigns.
After weeks of seeing clips inside the “Exotic Express”, Adam Rose came out to remind the crowd not to be lemons in the middle of Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter’s promo. Rose is from South Africa and speaks with an accent, so Swagger is an easy first opponent for Rose.
It is becoming more and more apparent that Jack Swagger is not in the WWE’s long term plans. He has the look, in-ring ability and athletic background they desire. He has a very entertaining mouth-piece in Zeb Colter, but he is booked horribly time and time again.
I would imagine Swagger will put Rose over eventually, either on Raw next week or possibly at Battleground. Unless the WWE creative team is planning on debuting Rose and giving him no momentum, like when Curtis Axel got slapped by HHH.
With Sheamus now as the US Champion, a few people pop in my mind as possible feuds for the Celtic Warrior. Immediately Cesaro came to mind, but if they want Cesaro to be a plausible threat to Sheamus, why not have him go over RVD clean? Maybe Del Rio gets a shot here?
I like the idea of Sheamus carrying a secondary belt. Maybe the WWE will finally decide to feature the US and IC titles more…but don’t get your hopes up.
Wyatt cuts another amazing promo. Ho hum. What else is new? I guess he is not done with Cena yet? With the series tied at 1-1, a rubber match makes sense at Battleground. Both matches have been disappointments (in my humble opinion) so I am not sure another match is what fans want to see. I would recommend pairing Cena up with two partners and facing off in a 3 vs 3 match at the upcoming PPV. Cena vs Wyatt has not delivered as a solo act, so why not give it a shot? May I suggest a team of Cena and the Usos vs the Wyatt Family…it at least gets the Tag Champions involved in something meaningful.
Cody Rhodes loses again, gets pissed at Goldust, more buildup to a split between the two. I think the WWE has missed the boat here, I’m not sure if anyone really cares anymore at this point.
The segment between the 3.5 MB and Los Matadores did not go over with the crowd. I heard boo’ing pretty easily on TV throughout the segment, especially when Slater did not see that Jinder and Drew had been disposed of. More or less a bathroom break for those like Sean who went to the event.
Alex Rusev is from Bulgaria, so what is with the love affair for Putin? I thought he was getting decent heat with Lana before the whole Russia angle began, so I don’t get the need for cheap heat here. I also would suggest he gets a new finisher. He is a monster, give him some type of powerful slam that could be heard all through the arena. I feel the Camel Clutch does not fit the character well. Sorry Kofi, thanks for coming.
Two of the best in-ring performers in the WWE, Daniel Bryan and Alberto Del Rio, put on a clinic tonight. Fantastic match, though everyone knew Del Rio had no chance. He did look strong in the defeat however.
The overarching angle with Bryan is the “Demon” Kane is still going after his former tag-team partner. I liked the idea of Bryan having to leave the arena immediately. The car struggle was fine but why did Daniel Bryan get out just to see Kane sit up? I would have liked Bryan to drive away and have Kane sit up as the car pulled off. Another match between the two will happen at Battleground, I highly doubt it will be just a regular singles match though.
Also noted: Brie is one hell of a screamer.
BNB and Big E delivered a hard hitting, entertaining match for the second night in a row. Big E has made great strides in the ring. His last two matches vs BNB have been the best matches of his that I can remember. Would not mind seeing these two feuding for a month or two more.
The Wyatts vs The Shield should have happened at Wrestlemania 30, that would have been an epic confrontation as opposed to these amazing matches happening on “B-Level” Pay-Per-Views, Raw and Smackdown. Their latest encounter was no different. These six men have amazing chemistry together and their matches always make the fans happy.
Wyatt gets the pin on Reigns after a distraction but we also see him fight back from a HHH pedigree only to get RKO’d after the match…foreshadowing anyone? With rumors that Batista will be leaving to promote a movie, one has to wonder what the plan is for Battleground but it is obvious this feud is not over.
The more I think about it, Extreme Rules and Battleground may wind up looking very similar.
Sean will be back next week to continue his recaps and “Tweets of the Week.” Hope you enjoyed my fill-in.
h/t to @WrasslorMonkey and WWE.com for Pictures and GIFs