By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Damien Mizdow Hosted 'Mizdow TV' with The Miz (Kickoff Show)
This segment was obviously used as a last minute attempt to put heat on the United States Championship match since no one has cared about it up until this point, and all I can say is that it did its best. Miz and Mizdow were fine and funny, but it still didn't make me any more excited for their match than I was before... meaning not at all. I'm a fan of the Miz and Mizdow pairing, but this felt like a waste of time that could have been used more effectively.
Mark Henry def. Bo Dallas (Kickoff Match)
I feared Dallas' various victories over Henry would lead to Henry demolishing him at some point and that's exactly what we got here. Granted, it wasn't like Dallas benefited immensely from those wins since he was right back to losing, but it was still slightly disappointing. I guess they wanted to blow off their mini-feud before Henry moves into a full-fledged feud with Big Show.
Intercontinental Champion Dolph Ziggler def. Cesaro (2-out-of-3 Falls Match)
This match was the perfect opener because both Ziggler and Cesaro have a history of putting on great matches. They definitely didn't disappoint here since there was a lot of entertaining action and the crowd enjoyed every bit of it. I was thoroughly surprised to see Ziggler win in two straight falls and I know some people wanted to see the match go longer, but I was content with it. It still doesn't make up for all the non-title matches Ziggler lost, but it helps. Now I'm left wondering what's next for Cesaro.
Nikki Bella def. Brie Bella (Loser Must Become the Winner's Assistant)
I'll give credit where credit is due: Both Bellas have come a long way in the ring over the last year or so and this match was better than I thought it would be. That said, it wasn't the in-ring action that is the problem. It's the story being told and how terrible it's been since the start. I just seemed like the fans in attendance felt apathetic more than anything else. Nikki winning clean was a nice touch, but I can't say I'm looking forward to seeing this feud be dragged out another month.
WWE Tag Team Champions Gold & Stardust def. The Usos
As good of a match as this was, I couldn't find myself to care much about it. They worked a very well-wrestled match, but we've seen it all before and their countless six-man tag matches on TV recently haven't helped matters. Simply put, both teams have been overexposed and this match was more of the same from them. I was hoping for The Usos to regain the gold seeing how there's more potential challengers for them than the heel Gold & Stardust, but at least they're not playing hot potato with the straps like they have with the Intercontinental and Divas titles.
John Cena def. Randy Orton (No. 1 Contender's Hell in a Cell Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship)
I've seen a lot of mixed reviews of this match, but personally, I enjoyed it. It was boring early on and that was due to them lacking in-ring chemistry and already having faced each other a million times. That said, they picked up the pace down the stretch and delivered a lot of close near-falls. The amount of finishers used toward the end was a bit ridiculous, but Cena putting Orton through a table for the win was well done. I surely hope they find a way to work Orton into the title picture because I don't think I can bear watching another Cena vs. Brock Lensar match.
United States Champion Sheamus def. The Miz
We've seen Sheamus and Miz work against each other enough in recent weeks for this to be nothing out of the ordinary. It received good time and there wasn't anything wrong with it, but as I've said before, no one has cared about the feud and therefore no one cared about match. As always, Damien Mizdow was hysterical at ringside and I'm sure Miz will blame him for not helping him win the title. A split is definitely in the works and I'm only in favor of it if it leads to bigger and better things for Sandow.
Rusev def. Big Show
Honestly, I enjoyed the match these two had on Raw recently more than this. It wasn't terrible, but it was slow, plodding and the crowd wasn't as into this match as they were their last encounter. Could the crowd be blamed? Who knows, but at least Rusev and Show tried to work and had a decent match. The biggest takeaway from this is that Rusev won clean. I didn't see that coming and it lends a lot to Rusev's credibility going forward. I didn't think Mark Henry's heel turn would happen on this show, so I wasn't shocked it didn't go down here, but I have my money on it happening on Raw as early as Monday.
Divas Champion AJ Lee def. Paige
It has unfortunately gotten to the point where I don't care about the matches these two have, I just want the feud to end. Their pay-per-view matches have all barely exceeded five minutes and never live up to expectations. The fact their feud has bombed in the last two months played a factor in that. AJ retaining was the best possible move and it's sad that a rivalry that had potential to be one of the best in years for the Divas division was so poorly mishandled.
Seth Rollins def. Dean Ambrose (Hell in a Cell Match)
Orton vs. Cena may have had the better wrestling (which is weird to even write), but Rollins vs. Ambrose undoubtedly told the better story of the two Cell matches. It's been a long time since a feud actually felt worthy of being settled inside Satan's Structure and the live crowd was excited for Ambrose and Rollins finally going at it. Starting the match atop the cell was a refreshing change of pace and the in-ring portion of the match featured plenty of cool spots. Many people hated the finish, and I can see why, but I didn't have anything against it. Kane's interference was unnecessary, but Bray Wyatt's return was a pleasant surprise and it'll lead to what should be an excellent feud between him and Ambrose (unlike Shawn Michaels interfering last year and it ultimately leading to nothing). I'm certain this isn't the last we've seen of the feud between Ambrose and Rollins, so Ambrose losing nothing in defeat and his eventual win over Rollins will mean that much more when it happens.
I didn't have high hopes for this show going in, so I'd say it met my expectations. Similar to Night of Champions, there was quite a bit of strong wrestling, but the storytelling in WWE right now is weak. Rollins vs. Ambrose has been one of the few highlights of weekly programming for me, but at least the transition to a feud between Ambrose and Wyatt has promise. The undercard isn't doing anything for me right now, but nothing on this event was badly booked and everything made sense in the end, so I can't complain about what we got for the most part.