Podzilla 1985

Monday, September 22, 2014

WWE Night of Champions Post PPV Thoughts

Let's see if I can bust one of these out for John.

Another WWE PPV is in the books, and I believe it was the 999th one I've seen. The usual gang reported to BZ85's Broadway Studio for wrasslin' action, and only 99.9% of us were disappointed. We bought a whole truckload of pizza for the event, but I only had $9.99 to throw in on it so I'm glad my cronies had my back.

Are you getting the message?

WWE sure hopes you do. I think they kept the shilling to one segment on this PPV, but damn did they do a good job with it. And, by good job I mean they were so irritating that it made you want to spend the full pay per view purchase and unsubscribe from their goddamn network.

Of course, once the show is over you get a thank you email from your wallet. $9.99 is a lot easier to regret than the outrageous PPV prices once you realize what you just watched. It's like when you catch a movie you were really excited for on Netflix and skip out on the theater experience. I'm looking at you, Mr. Del Toro.

I find it hard to form full cohesive thoughts because the number 9.99 keeps assaulting my brain.

From now on, just to grief World Wrestling Entertainment a tiny bit, I'm going to refer to the Network price as 10 bucks. Screw you, Vince.

This might come across as unexpected, but I did not hate the Night of Champions show. It was actually pretty rock solid from top to bottom, and I can't recall a single match that made me cringe.

I would gladly pay 10 bucks for a program like 2014's Night of Champions. Sorry, John!

It wasn't perfect, but if you go in to a WWE PPV expecting perfection you're either an idiot or you've been in a coma since the Attitude Era.

(Which you can see on the Network for 10 bucks a month!)

There were some big concerns going into this pay per view. What would happen with the Rollins/Reigns program now that the Next Big Thing was laid out in some hospital bed after emergency surgery? Would Nikki Bella completely ruin what would surely be a solid but uneventful woman's title match between AJ and Paige? How would the WWE find a way to book Cena as an unstoppable Superman after the brutal beating he received at Summerslam?

Well friends, the snake oil salesmen in the writers room found a way to fix all of these things and make it pretty damn entertaining as long as you checked your brain at the door.

Usually these PPV's follow a simple but effective formula. Tag team opener, couple of okay matches, terrible woman's match, hot main event with an awful finish. Night of Champions didn't really stray from that formula, but all of the parts that are usually just okay were good, and the parts that suck were pretty damn okay!

Let's go through this in order, because it saves me from having to think of interesting segues.

The Uso's deserve some kind of award for putting on hot opening matches. I really think they've kept the tag division from falling into another deep slumber, as it often does because WWE creative gives up on it. It's a shame too, because there are a lot of hot teams in the federation right now. I completely expected the Uso's to squeak out another victory over the Rhodes boys, but I was pleasantly surprised to see the Dusts pick up a title victory here. I'm a huge fan of Goldust, and even though his gimmick is completely unexplained, I am quite fond of Stardust.

I am especially fond of Mrs. Stardust.

Please stop looking at the picture and read this interesting article.

Anyway, good action in this one, and the right team are champions again. They should have never lost the belt in the first place, and I hope creative doesn't screw up this title reign as quickly.

Sheamus and Cesaro had a really good hard hitting match, but I find it so hard to care for either of these guys. I asked the crowd that came to watch the PPV if they could remember when Cesaro used to get a crowd reaction. People can talk about how amazing Paul Heyman is, and believe me he is, but Cesaro got a much bigger reaction when he was with Zeb Coulter. Heyman, or at the least the storyline relationship, killed off Cesaro's momentum. You have to ask yourself if Cesaro was ever really over, or if it was the fans desire to attach themselves to the bad guys with their catchphrase that made him popular. Or maybe all it will take is a big swing and he'll be back in the fans good graces.

Stop looking at the picture!!!

I've never really cared about Sheamus, and I'm Irish! Still, you can't take away from the fact the two are really good in the ring, and they delivered another solid performance.

I love the Miz as Johnny Cage. I was never a big Miz fan, but Johnny Cage was my favorite character in Mortal Kombat, and it's a good gimmick. I was glad to see Miz pick up the belt here, but the whole match just felt kind of surreal. Between R Truth and Sandow playing doppelganger to Ziggler and Miz, and the pointless presence of the Florida Georgia Line, I was extremely distracted. Good match, terrible presentation. I also wonder how far down the card Ziggler, Truth, and Sandow will fall in the wake of the Miz winning the title back.

Probably the biggest story going into the PPV was the emergency surgery of up and coming star Roman Reigns, who will presumably be out for a couple of weeks. It's terrible news for him, but honestly, I'm glad he didn't show up for Night of Champions.

I'm not a big Reigns fan. I find his character to be that of a boring Superman, kind of like Cena but without all that charisma and star quality that John exudes. He's not very good on the mic, his wrestling is flat, and I cannot understand why so many people go gaga over him. I guess being related to the right people can get you pretty far in life, and a legion of sheep will carry you the rest of the way.

So what did we get instead of Reigns/Rollins? The return of the Titty Master himself, Dean Ambrose! Dean answered Seth's open challenge, and proceeded to beat his ass across the arena and doing a very good job of channeling Stone Cold and Brian Pillman's sense of violent insanity. He may have been carted out of the arena by a horde of officials, but he turned what could have been a disaster into a very entertaining segment.

And it was 100% more entertaining than anything Roman Reigns would have done, unless you're a real big fan of the weakest looking spear in the business.

Henry vs. Rusev was the standard fare from the Bulgarian Brute as of late. He gets beat up, makes a comeback, hits a big shot, and pulls out another victory over some kind of American hero. It was a decent enough match, but something really needs to change before this gimmick goes beyond stale. The continued presence Vladimir Putin isn't as hot as you would think.

You know who could save it? Someone who possesses the three I's.

If only.

Next up we have the match I was least excited for, and it was as underwhelming as I thought it would be. Jericho is good, but he seems to be so directionless. Every time he wrestles you just look for little hints that he's going to disappear for another year or so. I thought he was going to be a ghost after losing to Bray Wyatt, who did NOT make an appearance on a PPV that Damien Sandow was on, but thank God he stuck around for a hot feud with Randy Orton.

Congratulations to Randy Orton for signing a new endorsement deal with ZzzQuil.

I like Randy Orton, and I think he would be a hell of a lot more interesting if they just let him be himself. His scripted promos come across as so forced, and his wrestling is so formulaic that you could set your watch to it. But, when Orton is on, he's so good at it. His taunting of the crowd near the end of the match was great, and his big moves are so crisp and deadly that I get confused as to who the real Randy Orton is.

I assume that Jericho will take time off after this, but I'm sure they could stretch this feud out to another PPV, which you can see on the WWE Network for just 10 bucks!

I'm going to post another picture of a hot girl to go along with my thoughts on the Diva's three way title match. I do it to keep your attention, and I choose Nikki Bella to piss off Asa.

I expected a bit of a disaster when I remembered that Nikki was going to be taking on AJ and Paige for the title. However, I realized that the whole title feud is dangerously close to being stale, so some new blood might invigorate it a little bit.

She didn't have a break out performance, but I felt that Nikki Bella showed some promise and more than held her own with two of the most talented wrestlers in the division. I think her presence helped the match, because otherwise we would just be watching another fight between two women who physically look like your nerdy little sisters. Nikki Bella isn't exactly a Beth Phoenix, Chyna, or Awesome Kong, but she looked like a full grown woman in a ring full of kids. She also pulled out some sweet moves and took a nice bump at the end of the match.

The rest of the match was fine, and I like how they keep switching the title from AJ to Paige. While their characters might be kind of lame at this point, the angle itself still has promise. I think if incorporated right, adding Nikki and Brie Bella could add some real simmer to this fire.

And throw in Stephanie McMahon too. She has more charisma in her little finger than the other four combined. Plus that Summerslam outfit was beyond hot.

And then came the biggest reason to slap down 10 bucks every month on the WWE Network. Well, 10 bucks with a six month commitment.

No, no. It's 10 bucks a month with a half a year commitment. Screw you, Vince.

Cena and Lesnar had another brutal fight, and the entire room was glued to the TV for the entire fight. That might not seem important to you, but these guys were giving up time playing Destiny to watch Cena and Lesnar brawl.


I wondered how they were going to book Cena in this match. Obviously, he had to fight back more or he would look like a total weakling. Logically he couldn't just obliterate Lesnar, or else Brock would look like a one hit wonder. They also couldn't just put the title back on Cena, because it would kill Brock's momentum. But Lesnar is surely not going to wrestle on every PPV, so how can they leave the title on him?

It was a conundrum for sure. It seemed like there would be no right way to end this match.

But what about the match itself? It was good. It was really good, and it made sense! Lesnar was still a dominating force, but Cena got in a lot more offense that seemed logical for a guy that got his ass handed to him last month. Cena knew when Lesnar was going for the big moves, and he countered intelligently. The story was that Cena knew what he was up against this time, and he gave as good as he got against a monster.

I had no problem with this match. It was worth the wait and I was glad that Cena didn't just get his ass handed to him again. It took four Attitude Adjustments and three reapplications of the STFU to make Brock look like he was in any kind of danger.

And when it seemed like Cena just might have enough put the beast away....out came Seth Rollins.

I remember at the end of Summerslam we predicted that during the rematch, Rollins would come out at NoC and cash in against the champion. It seemed so predictable that it wouldn't happen, but lo and behold it did. It was a bad finish that really took the steam out of a solid main event, but it did have a few redeeming qualities.

I loved the look of disbelief on Paul Heyman's face when Rollins came out and gave Lesnar a Blackout. He had an expression that didn't really seem concerned, but was more confused as to why Rollins would ever dare to take on Brock Lesnar. It was funny, and we were all thinking the same thing. Lesnar looks like, and probably could, destroy someone as small as Seth Rollins with the flick of a finger.

Before we could see Rollins lose his one title match to a wounded beast, Cena interfered and ruined the whole thing. He knocked Seth out of the ring, said some choice words to him, and then turned around to a big F5 from Lesnar.

Roll credits, see you on Monday!

Good match, another bad finish. That kind of seemed like the trend tonight, but the in ring action was good and a good time was had by all. I'm also interested to see where a lot of these feuds go, and that's what a well written show is supposed to do.

So, in that sense, you win the day, Vince McMahon.

But more importantly, I win, because my love for Candice Michelle infuriates my friends so much that they want to tear my spine out and hang me with it.

Oh, Candice Michelle...

Screw you, Vince.

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