Best match: Shield-Evolution
Worst match: Divas (although not bad)
Show delivered. Shield-Evolution -- the real main event incidentally -- was absolutely excellent; crowd into it; great story-telling through the finish. Bray Wyatt won as he should have, but I question the finish with the child --
borders on TNAish (which is not a good thing). El Torito-Hornswaggle pre-show was fun.
Glad to see Barrett get the title; live crowd was behind him. Bryan-Kane was well done, but I have seen it enough times -- at house shows, TV, and PPV.
Best Match-Shield vs Evolution
Worst Match - Cena vs Bray
Fun show. 6 man was amazing. I may be in the minority but I liked the creepy Cena finish. All of the younger/up and coming talent went over, booking as far as who was supposed to win made sense across the board. Good main event as well with a decent undercard. I was very happy with the show.
Thumbs Up with some reservations
WWE Extreme Rules
Best: Shield over Evolution
Worst: Wyatt over Cena (nothing wrong with the action but TNA style bizarro booking with Cena continually trying to run away from a fight after doing minimal damage to Bray, lacking the smarts to win by pin/submission, announcers blatantly signalling two or three dozen times that Cena had the match won but is fixing to get screwed then there's the sheep boy (possibly the Black Scorpion as a boy time traveled to 2014 in some way...)
The Wee-L-C could be argued as the second most entertaining match on the show.
WWE Extreme Rules: Thumbs Up
Best Match: Shield vs. Evolution
Worst Match: WeeLC Match
I know the WeeLC match wasn't supposed to be anything serious and that is fine, but I don't need to see it period even for comedy sake. Rather they utilize the Rhodes Brothers or some other talent that wasn't on the show to kick things off. Triple threat match was a decent opener. Obviously Cesaro winning was the only thing that really made sense. Rusev vs. Truth and Woods was again what it needed to be. But again this didn't need to be on this show. Could easily have been on regular TV. Even though I am not paying $50 a month anymore with the Network for a ppv, I still want it to be feel a little more special than a Smackdown show. Bad News Barrett is great. I have to say I liked Wade before and wasn't sold on this gimmick, but he has really made it work for him. I hope the IC belt doesn't destroy like it did before. Glad he beat Big E. He is going to be a big time player with Cesaro near the top if they allow for it. Evolution vs. the Shield was awesome. Great match. Best thing on the show and made the show worth seeing regardless of anything else. Rollins is amazing. They all are. Kind of thought Evolution was going to win though just to push the feud further, but maybe they are going in a new direction. Cena vs. Wyatt had too much interference especially in a cage match setting. Almost pointless in having Bray win if it was going to be so ridiculous. Bray was on the rise and he could be in a top spot, but not if he can't beat people without tons of interference. This is a strange storyline. Kind of want to see it end. Paige vs. Tamina was better than I thought it would be. I really like Paige and hope she gets to have a good run. Bryan vs. Kane was good, but not what I want from a Bryan match. I don't get into Kane anymore because it has been done so much and he is just not fresh anymore. I want to see Bryan against guys like Cesaro who can really have a fantastic match, but it was Extreme Rules. Again just the six man made the show and some other good stuff and some forgettable stuff. It certainly helps when you don't have to shell out the extra cash for every ppv now. I did have a couple of quick issues during the broadcast where it stopped for a second or two and started right up again. Funny since Mania had no issues at all for me.
Thumbs Up! Great show overall. The crowd was hot for most of it. Two great shows in a row for WWE. The Network worked perfectly again.
Best Match: The Shield vs. Evolution. Superb match. Best match of 2014 so far.
Worst Match: Wyatt vs. Cena. Probably the silliest finish since the WCW days. Remember when Warrior appeared inside a Cage out of a smoke? Exactly!
1. Torito vs Hornswoggle. I really enjoyed this match. It was all comedy, but the comedy was actually funny. WWE went out of their way to bring "props" for this match. They totally won the crowd which is something considering who was involved and where they were. ***
2. Cesaro vs RVD vs Swagger. Some sloppy spots but the crowd was really into it. Cesaro is already a star. ***1/2
3. Rusev vs R-Truth & Woods. A squash, but a "good" one.*
4. Barrett vs Big E. Good match. Fans are getting behind Barrett. Hopefully this is the start of a repackage for the title itself. He should be the IC Champion when the Networks launch in Europe. Barrett was excellent in the post show conference. ***1/4
5. The Shield vs Evolution. A super heated wild brawl. A modern day Classic. At least ****3/4
6. Wyatt vs Cena. This had no psychology at all. Cena alone pretty much beat the whole Family but then lost to the face of a kid. I guess that kid's face was that ugly. It had more interventions inside the Cage than any of their previous matches without one. It was also way too long with too many escapes attempts and not much actual action. *
7. Paige vs Tamina. What they did was ok but they were scheduled in the worst spot possible. Why WWE insist in doing this is beyond my imagination. I mean, they got a whole division of women but keep booking them in positions were it isn't cost effective to have one. *1/2
8. Bryan vs Kane. Very different match from Bryan but it was still great. They promoted it as a war and they did one. In the post-show Bryan said that he learned to use the forklift from his Dad, so it was like a nice tribute to him. Probably Kane best singles match ever and all due to Bryan. ****1/4
Leonardo II Mendez
San Sebastian, PR
Best Match: Shield vs Evolution
Worst Match: Rusev vs. R-Truth/Woods
Really enjoyed the show overall. Watched on the network (via Apple TV) and had feed issues though out the show. Feed froze up 4 times for several minutes and required a reset each time. Some video was extremely blurred which was annoying. Still got to see most of the show though and thought it worth watching. Swagger/RVD/Cesaro was sloppy, but good. Barrett winning the IC title seemed to mean something. Paige/Tamina wasn't bad at all although they were victims of bad placement on the show. Shield vs Evolution was great and put over the young hounds strong. I felt like Wyatt should be have gone over Cena clean without all the interference and I was really hoping for a clean pin in the ring, but this is WWE and it's Cena we're talking about so I won't waste a lot of time thinking about that. Bryan/Kane was good. Not up to the standard of match quality that Bryan has been setting lately, but solid. Lived up to the extreme theme of the night and added to Bryan's credibility as champion. There is a legitimate youth movement sweeping through WWE this year and they seem to be going all the way with it so it's a good time to be a wrestling fan.
WWE has just been fun to watch. The newer guys getting pushes. The storylines are interesting. The shows are fast paced...and the PPV's seem to have less nonsense and filler. Hell, even the pre-show match was a blast.
RVD: Guy can still go. Puts over Cesaro strong.
Bad News Barrett: Nice to see him getting another push.
WWE putting over Wyatt. Smart move. The whole voice thing was a bit much. Borderline stupid actually...but it is what it is. I am worried about how this will end. I would love a heel Cena, just to see how they would do it. But I doubt it will happen. But a nice Hogan turn, then a title chase/run would be interesting.
Shield going over. Bryan winning a solid match. The Divas Division finally getting some love.
Really, not that many:Batista is the goat of Evolution, but the Shield is fun to watch.
I do think that Bryan has the potential to get buried under all the Evolution/Cena/Wyatt stuff. I was a bit miffed to see him feuding with Kane...once someone gets the title like a Sting or Goldberg or Foley or Undertaker or even Hart it just is not as fun as watching them chase it. They reached the top...now what? However, the Kane match was not bad. And it keeps Bryan relevant. I just wonder once this wears out...maybe Lesnar?
Also, Brie Bella looks more masculine than Bryan (her face), and she needs a cheeseburger. Badly.
Overall: Another above average PPV. 2014 is easily shaping up to being one of my favorite years ever. It is nice to kick back, and just enjoy the show instead of nitpicking and over-analyzing.
Thumbs in the Middle; perhaps a marginal Thumbs Up if feeling generous
Best Match: The Shield Vs Evolution
Worst Match: John Cena Vs Bray Wyatt
Hasn't been a good year for WWE PPV. Royal Rumble was a pathetic excuse of a PPV. Elimination Chamber and Wrestlemania had strong first halves but poor second halves. Now comes Extreme Rules. Started out well and my thumb was firmly up after Shield/Evolution
Pre-show WeeLC match between Hornswoggle and El Torito was hardly a classic but for what it was, passable. Some good spots and some good comedy thrown in to make it entertaining enough.
RVD/Swagger/Cesaro was a damn good start to the main PPV. I was thrilled they went with the elimination format a la ECW's classic 3-Way Dances of years past.
Rusev Vs Truth & Woods. We've seen it all before. Nothing new here although Rusev shows potential. Tired of these squashes on expensive PPVs.
Bad News Barrett Vs Big E. I know I'm in the minority but I really like Big E. as a wrestler. He's really impressed me over the last eight months. His match with Barrett was superb while it lasted. One of my favorite PPV matches so far. I was stunned at the total babyface reaction Barrett had.
Shield Vs Evolution. What can I say? Just incredible and off-the-charts awesome from start to finish. This is neck in neck with Shield/Wyatts and Storm/Gunner I Quit for Match of the Year. Wonder if The Shield as a unit can qualify for Wrestler of the Year? They truly deserve it so far based on the string of great six-man bouts they've been having.
Then there was John Cena and Bray Wyatt. Cena's one of my favorites and such a great worker that it pains me to have hated his last four PPV matches in a row. This match was just awful on every level. The work in-ring was poor and incredibly boring. Wyatt exposed himself as incapable of leading singles matches. Not to mention the total failure in management resulting in moments when Cena and Wyatt were stalling or looking around waiting for a planned spot to occur but was delayed. Then there was the ending, which lacked the proper explanation/
Paige and Tamina's match was just bowling shoe ugly. Sloppy, slow and wretched. Last week's Knockouts title match was sheer crap, but it was far better than this match turned out to be.
Daniel Bryan and Kane's match may have been a garbage wrestling match, but it was so well done and exciting that it was excellent for what it set out to be. Loved the clever finish with the fire table.
A mixed bag overall but better than what WWE has been offering as of late on PPV.
Thumbs in the middle
Best match: The Shield vs. Evolution six-man tag
Worst match: John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt cage match
Extreme Rules was a cool show for me being the first PPV (or special event) I have seen live on the Network, not counting the first NXT live special if that counts as a special event nowadays. Normally, I wouldn't have bought this show as a traditional pay-per-view. The PPVs in general cost more than I was willing to spend on a monthly basis so I usually bought WrestleMania every year in the past and maybe one or two shows throughout the year if the lineups were good. For the same amount of money spent per year on PPV, I can now get the Network and watch every show. That's a helluva deal. Still, this show was hit or miss.
The Shield vs. Evolution was awesome! It was the best match by far. Seth Rollins was the star of that match. On the other hand, the cage match with Wyatt over Cena was plodding and flat then the end was creepy. The divas title match with Paige retaining over Tamina was done a disservice being placed in its spot on the card. The match would have gotten over much better if placed earlier in the card and the WWE title match could have probably followed the cage match without that buffer match.
The WeeLC match was a spectacle and I'm embarrassed to admit I liked most of it except for the mini-commentary team and mini-announcer doing the botched introductions. Those aspects were too much. However, it wasn't boring like the cage match. The stunt with the flaming table brought back memories of ECW matches with the Dudleys and Balls Mahoney. In that same match with the fire, I did like the idea of Bryan driving the forklift as a blue collar ode to the working man, but it came off too over the top. Nevertheless, the flying headbutt off the pallet on the forklift will make a good visual for a video package in the future. I liked the show overall but was glad I didn't pay the full price of a traditional PPV.
Likewise, my stream worked fine throughout the night and never went out but the quality was in-and-out like a fiddler's elbow. Mostly, the quality was close to HD for most of the show but during times, the quality dropped for several minutes before returning to a better quality. This was the only show that has ever been an issue so I don't know if it was demand on the stream or it was something on my end. Still, the Network stream held up for the most part.
Best Match: Shield vs. Evolution
Worst Match: Rusev vs. Truth/(Woods)
Solid PPV - a good 6.5 or 7 out of 10. Nothing flat out bad, but only one real standout match. The Shield continues to demonstrate why they are a huge part of the future of the business. I guess Batista will likely be kicked out of Evolution tomorrow night for being the weak link? Maybe Sheamus can turn heel and take his place?
Bryan vs. Kane was pretty weird - it was like the PG era version of an Attitude era match. Aspects of this match reminded me of HBK vs. Diesel from Good Friends, Better Enemies, though it was nowhere near that good. Still an entertaining match with memorable spots and a decisive first Title defense for Bryan. I can't see Bryan vs. Kane being justified again on PPV, but maybe they'll be incorporated into some WarGames-type match at Payback?
Cesaro, Wyatt and Barrett all got their wins, and are all hugely over (so weird how over most of the heels are and how hated most of the babyfaces are excluding Bryan and The Shield). Cena vs. Wyatt was way overbooked but at least Wyatt finally won.
Cesaro-RVD-Swagger was a solid opening match. Barrett-Big E was decent. Paige-Tamina was a good women's match.
This was an enjoyable show overall. Hopefully some big things will happen on RAW to create an exciting picture leading into Payback.