Date: July 11, 2014
Location: Canadian Tire Center, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Commentators: Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
The blue show is in Canada tonight as we're getting closer to Battleground. The announced main event for tonight is Roman Reigns vs. Rusev which is going to be a war. It's a war destined to end due to interference but it's still going to be good while it lasts. Other than that there's Randy Orton vs. Chris Jericho which should be good stuff. Let's get to it.
We look at Rollins and Cena from Monday in a long video package.
Here are Lana and Rusev to open things up. Lana rips on the leaders of America and Canada, saying they're just like Roman Reigns: all style and no substance. Reigns cuts her off and stares down the evil foreigners. This is his ring and Rusev actually thinks he can crush Reigns. Reigns says try it and threatens to put his fist across Rusev's face.
Lana says be careful what you wish for but Reigns wants a referee out here right now. The look on Rusev's face is hilarious as he looks surprised with his mouth wide open. A referee comes out and is ready for the match but Lana says not on Reigns' terms. Roman didn't sound good on the mic here. He's still finding his style.
JBL and Cole schill the Network.
AJ Lee vs. Cameron
Non-title and Paige vs. AJ for the belt is set for Battleground. The bell rings but Cameron wants to put on lip gloss. Cameron takes her down and tries to put makeup on AJ, which JBL thinks is a foreign object. A double chicken wing has AJ in trouble and Cameron shouts a lot. Back up and AJ sends her into the corner for a running clothesline followed by a shot to the face for two. Cameron tries to leave because AJ messed up her face, only to have Naomi run down and throw her back in. The Shining Wizard gets AJ the pin at 3:12.
Rating: D+. I get that Cameron is supposed to be annoying, but man alive I can't stand watching her. She isn't the kind of character where I want to see what's coming to her. She's the kind of character that makes me think of how much I can't stand modern celebrity culture and makes me want to go read a good book.
Orton says Chris Jericho has won everything there is to won and that makes him a legend. That leaves Orton with one thing to do: introduce Jericho to the Legend Killer.
Fandango vs. Adam Rose
Layla comes out with Fandango but Summer Rae is one of the Rosebuds. Rose jumps over Fandango to start and gives him a little spank. Summer Rae and Layla go at it about thirty seconds into the match and Fandango gets nailed trying to break it up. Rose wins by countout at 1:02.
Rose hits the Party Foul on Fandango post match.
We look at Bray and Jericho's discussion from Raw.
Jericho says his match with Bray has a chance to be a classic because they're from opposite sides of the spectrum. Bray says save us Y2J but Wyatt is too far gone to save. Jericho is going to follow Wyatt's advice and let actions do the talking tonight against Randy Orton. Maybe it's time to crush the head of the serpent. As for Wyatt, Jericho is coming. He blows very gently in a nice touch.
Later tonight it's Layla vs. Summer Rae with Fandango as guest referee in a Money in the Bank rematch.
Usos vs. Heath Slater/Titus O'Neil
Non-title. Jimmy pounds on Titus to start but it's quickly off to Slater who gets kicked in the face for two. Heath takes him down into a chinlock but gets caught in a bad looking Samoan drop for two more. Everything breaks down and Slater jumps into a superkick, setting up the Superfly Splash for the pin at 1:59. Nothing match but I like them throwing random low level guys together as jobbers. It's better than having Ryback/Axel job here.
Post match the Usos say they love the rivalry with the Wyatts. Jey imitates a stereotypical commentator while Jimmy acts out a lot of the moves he describes. Odd but kind of entertaining actually.
Chris Jericho vs. Randy Orton
Before the match Bray pops up on screen and sings his song before telling Chris to save himself. Cole actually gives us some backstory here, talking about Orton arrived in WWE in 2002 and called Jericho to pick him up at the airport because Jericho was the only person he knew in WWE. Now Orton only cares about himself and isn't like his old self. Jericho quickly sends Randy to the apron and dropkicks him out to the floor as we take a break.
Back with Jericho hitting a running knee to the back for two as Cole brings up Orton punting Jericho out of WWE back in 2010. I'm digging this storytelling from Cole. Chris misses a charge and falls out to the floor where Orton sends him into the steps. It's good for two back inside and the fans loudly chant for Y2J. We hit the chinlock for a bit before Orton slams Jericho's head down onto the mat.
Back to the chinlock as the fans chant for the Canadian again. He fights up with a belly to back suplex and a dropkick but Orton kicks away from the Walls. A powerslam gets two for Orton but Jericho comes back with a running clothesline in the corner. Orton crotches him on the top, only to have Jericho come back with a top rope cross body for a close two.
The backbreaker puts Chris down again and Randy loads up the Elevated DDT but Jericho counters into the Walls. Orton makes the rope and now the Elevated DDT connects. Jericho blocks the RKO and hits the Lionsault but the Wyatts seem to be coming. The lights come up and they're nowhere in sight, allowing to hit the RKO for the pin at 11:50 shown of 14:20.
Rating: B-. Solid match here as you would expect from two top level guys when they're given the time. They didn't go outside their comfort zone here but even the basics from these guys is still good stuff. Unlike Ambrose, Jericho losing isn't going to affect his status due to how established he is. It's why he's been brought in and that's the right idea.
Layla vs. Summer Rae
Fandango is refereeing again and gets kissed by both girls to start. The bell rings and Fandango stops both girls from charging at the other. Apparently he wants to dance but the girls aren't impressed. Instead they both beat him up and knock him to the floor before dancing together as Fandango is stunned. This wasn't a match.
More Network talk.
Goldust vs. Curtis Axel
Feeling out process to start with Goldust breathing at Curtis. Stardust gets on the barricade and seems to be conducting the crowd as Axel takes over on Goldust. A dropkick sends Goldust outside and Stardust is now laying on the announcers' table. He puts on JBL's hat as the match heads back inside where Goldust kicks Axel in the head. A powerslam gets two for Goldust and the Final Cut gets the pin at 2:28.
Ryback goes after Goldust but Stardust blows gold dust into his eyes and sends Ryback to the floor.
Bo Dallas vs. El Torito/Diego
Bo promises to be handi-capable against Diego and his Bo-vine friend. The big guys start but Diego stops him to shout OLE. Dallas hammers away in the corner but gets sent into the buckle, setting up the Bodog for the pin at 1:17.
Torito gets pulled into the ring post match but Bo helps him to his feet, only to give him a Bodog.
Rusev vs. Roman Reigns
They lock up to start until Rusev kicks at the legs to take over. Reigns cleans house with right hands and knocks Rusev to the floor as we take a break. Back with Rusev controlling with a nerve hold before he drops Reigns with a spinwheel kick. We hit the nerve hold again before Reigns' comeback is squashed by a kick to the chest. The fans think Russia sucks and help Roman fight out of the third nerve hold. A running clothesline drops the Russian and a Samoan drop does it again. The apron kick has Lana freaking out and there's the Superman Punch, drawing in Orton for the DQ at 6:55 shown of 9:25.
Rating: C. This was decent while it lasted but there was no way either guy was getting a clean win here. Also, a nine and a half minute match on Smackdown doens't have nearly the same atmosphere that these two had in the battle royal. Build these two up a bit more and make it mean something and the match will be much better.
Rusev lays Roman out but Lana orders Rusev out of the ring instead of CRUSH. Orton heads inside and hits an RKO to end the show.
Overall Rating: C-. Reigns finally having to deal with some adversity is a nice thing to see, but the rest of the show wasn't much. Orton vs. Jericho was good but doesn't mean much, and the rest of the show was just there. Unfortunately Smackdown is slipping back into its old pattern of meaning nothing at all and that makes it hard to sit through.
AJ Lee b. Cameron – Shining Wizard
Adam Rose b. Fandango via countout
Usos b. Heath Slater/Titus O'Neil – Superfly Splash to Slater
Randy Orton b. Chris Jericho – RKO
Goldust b. Curtis Axel – Final Cut
Bo Dallas b. Diego/El Torito – Bodog to Diego
Roman Reigns b. Rusev via DQ when Randy Orton interfered
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