Best Match: John Cena v Kevin Owens
Worst Match: Big Show v Ryback
Well Kevin Owens is now just a guy. A guy who can have great matches and once beat the top guy, but is now just another guy like Bray Wyatt and so many others.
Dean Ambrose is also just a guy. So is Roman Reigns. In fact, everyone in the promotion with the exception of John Cena, is just a guy who shows up for the paycheck.
Sad that booking has done this to the entire roster, when any number of guys had potential.
At least Nikki Bella can still beat any woman currently on the roster. Let's see how they ruin that division by bringing up someone completely unprepared like Dana Brooke.
Jeff Cohen - Flushing, NY
Overall: thumbs up
Best match: Owens vs Cena
Worst match: Big Show vs Ryback
Overall, a solid show. They did a good job with the Dusty video package overall and it was very touching when Renee got broken up during the pre-show. I have to say, she really has done a remarkable job since coming to the company. I can’t say the same for Byron though.
King Barrett vs R Truth- Since the day Barrett won NXT and he cut that promo, you could tell this guy was talented. All they have done since then is constantly have him lose tv matches (Summerslam 2010 thanks Vince) and never give him a legitimate run. Obviously his injury history hasn’t helped, but you can’t justify to me R Truth beating him clean. Actually, you can’t justify to me R Truth beating…anyone. Decent match for what it was, but if winning King of the Ring keeps you saddled in pre-show matches, why have the tournament?-*1/2
MITB Ladder Match
Solid opener. Easy storytelling and all participants involved were able to showcase their offense. Neville really shined here and it was nice to see him be the last one to be thrown off before Sheamus Grabbed the briefcase. The Wyatt appearance was surprising and should be an interesting feud, you can definitely pen that one down for Summerslam. Sheamus winning was a nice surprise and his character has been refreshing. Can you imagine a Sheamus/Lesnar match? Talk about a physical matchup.-***
Women’s Title Match
They dedicated this match to Dusty..as well as the finish. Why does this company continue to insult our intelligence? Before that ending segment the match was actually pretty good (not NXT good though) and they were given enough time. Paige says change is coming to the division. That’ll only happen when the old man retires.-**
IC Title Match
Well, this was terrible. I’d prefer not to go any further on this. Daniel Bryan was wrong, the title was better off in his therapist’s office.-DUD
For a while I had the Royal Rumble Triple Threat match on a pedestal and said nothing this year from a WWE standpoint would touch it. This match came close. No surprise they gave Cena his win back but as the match went on it almost seemed like they were teasing a Cena DQ finish as he constantly argued with the ref. Crowd was super hot for this and quite frankly, this was the main event for everyone. We have gotten two MOTY candidates from these guys in 2 weeks. If anything I’d make everyone wait till Summerslam for the blowoff, and Owens has to go over there.
I’m sorry but Cena can’t win every feud. Fantastic match, almost a five star performance albeit for the finish. Camera angle on the stunner made it look like Owens threw him down and reversed it so it was a little bit of a headscratcher. The post-match angle was a little given away, if you listen real closely when Cena is raising Owen’s hands he says” Ready when you are.” Cena really needs to stop calling things out so loudly, but it still was fine. Other than that, this the type of match that makes me love Pro Wrestling. Well done.-**** ¾
An eh match. Best thing was the promo beforehand, I thought Xavier Woods was great at looking real pissed about Kofi’s loss. The title change makes no sense, wasn’t the right time for it.-*
Best way to describe this was a pro-wrestling match with a ladder. I really enjoyed this actually and it made sense. If you are trying to win the title why do constant high-risk spots when you can take out your opponent’s legs? Good to see Rollins win one clean on his own as the typical wuss heel finishes get stale after awhile. These two are incapable of having a bad match, and the post-match interview is definitely a good start towards the build with Lesnar.-****
Thumbs up show last night for me. Like everyone else I thought that Cena / Owens was fantastic. Main event was phenomenal as well.
The divas title match, booking wise was kind of a mess. Hopefully they are staring to plant the seeds of fixing the division however. Expecting Paige to get some backup from NXT soon hopefully.
Best Match - Ambrose v Rollins
Worst match - Ryback v Big Show
Best match: Rollins vs Ambrose
Worst match: Ryback vs Big Show
There was some great wrestling on this show, but the booking was God awful to inexcusable in places, bringing the entire show below acceptable levels.
The crutch of 5 people selling death during multiperson ladder matches while 2 people work was never more apparent than tonight. The Sister Abigail by Wyatt rendered Reigns unconscious for minutes! And I don't think I'll ever understand Sheamus winning that match. He was a good world champion when there were 2 top titles, but he's not at #1 title level nor do I think anyone really wants to see him in the title picture.
I guess it was fitting that there was a Dusty finish in the women's match, but it was the second PPV in a row with one. And why wasn't Nikki disqualified due to outside interference? Maybe this angle will have a payoff one of these years.
The IC title is back to being meaningless after the Ryback/Big Show mess, and the tag title lost a lot of luster with the Prime Time Players out of nowhere beating a team that got itself over and was having a good run.
Cena winning clean I just don't understand. Why people need to "get their win back" I also don't understand. Why can't one guy be better than the other? Or at least give Cena some major adversity before he gets the big win, instead of having it be 50-50 on a two week build. It seems like it would've been more effective for Owens throw the kitchen sink at him, lose his cool, get DQ'd and then deliver the same post match beat down. That was the first time Owens was pinned by anyone in the company (house shows included), and it was wasted on John Cena. Balor giving him his first loss in Tokyo would've meant tons more.
After all that, I was pleasantly surprised to see a clean finish that actually made sense in the main event. Since they now seem to feel that there always must be shenanigans, I'm surprised they both didn't hold onto the belt on the ground, have it be ruled a draw and the show ending with a tug of war. That would've made it the worst PPV in years. Still the worst PPV of the year so far, in my opinion, especially when you consider that MITB is usually one of their best every year, so my expectations were higher.
- Chris Hughes, Lakeland, FL
Here's my Money in the Bank review:
Best Match: Cena vs. Owens
Worst Match: New Day vs. Prime Time Players
Overall thought it was a really good show, especially the first half.
MITB Ladder Match - Good match overall (minus the ending of course), nothing super crazy, pretty much what was expected. Crowd was great pretty much all night and really hot for Bray's run-in... or "appear-in" as it were. Was kind of surprised how much of a negative reaction Reigns got throughout a lot of the match, thought the crowd was past that with him, and it's not exactly like he was in there with a bunch of super over guys outside of Orton. Thought it was very pointless having Sheamus win MITB as his character has absolutely no direction and absolutely nobody wants to see him as champion, but that being said, I wasn't shocked given the competitors. Orton's done it before and it doesn't really fit Reign's character to be carrying around this briefcase for an eventual "cowardly" run-in, not to mention the crowd would totally turn on him (not just tonight, but in general) if the writing was on the wall for him to win the title with a cash-in. I thought a Wyatt/Reigns feud was inevitable as they haven't really had a proper feud outside of some pointless Smackdown matches, so I'm fine with him going off to feud with Bray since Brock's return is imminent.
Divas Title: Paige vs. Nikki Bella - Was pleasantly surprised with this one. Thought Nikki looked great and really looked like a strong champion. They had time to work a proper match for a change and seemed to be executing moves a lot crisper and on point than in many (main roster) Divas matches. Actually found it pretty hilarious when Brie started ripping tissues out of her bra to prove she wasn't Nikki.
IC Title: Big Show vs. Ryback - Again, I was pleasantly surprised with this one up until the finish. Thought they worked about as good a match as you can expect for two guys of their size. Even The Miz was entertaining (never thought I'd say that) and I liked the fact that both the face and heel both wanted to kick his ass throughout the match. The finish was obviously a dud, but still this match had the potential to be hideous, and they told a pretty good story for what it was.
Cena vs. Owens - Obviously without a shadow of a doubt match of the night, and probably a strong contender for WWE match of the year here. Had a big match feel and the crowd was treating it like it was the real main event. First let's just once again give Cena some credit. As loathed as he had been by the internet fans over the years, this new role in the semi-main event with him working with younger guys is absolutely fantastic. He is so valuable to the company right now as he's one of the only superstars who is over to the point where a win over him truly carries some cache for the fans in order to create new superstars.
Owens of course was great as well, and my God, they actually have a legit main event heel on their hands in a matter of only a month. Which begs the question, why the hell don't they do this more often? It is 100% in WWE's control and if when wrestlers aren't over, they have nobody to blame but themselves. Look back over the last couple of years - a few of the big stars they've created from "rookies" were Rusev and The Shield Members... not coincidentally they booked those guys like monsters from day 1. They never came in and "paid their dues" (i.e. constantly losing) and made the fans not care about them. If you bring in a new superstar and TELL the fans, "hey this guy is a big deal", they will buy it if you book them strong. This whole mentality for so many years of, "well we've gotta show these guys their place in the pecking order first" has always been idiotic, if someone's not over, guess what? It's hurting WWE! It's like trying to punish your kids by taking away their allowance, but then burning the money - it's still YOUR money!!
Both guys were great in this match and pulled out all kinds of innovative stuff. Seeing Cena do that crab-walk flip over Powerbomb was truly amazing if for no other reason than it's somewhat comical to see this indy style invade WWE to the point where their biggest star is doing indy style matches and spots. Usually I'd be pretty sick of the 50/50 booking to negate Owens win, but the way they did this match they made him look so strong and the ending just sealed him with the crowd as a great heel when he attached him after the hand shake.
Also have to send a shout out to the guy with the "THE CENA THE" sign, referencing Sideshow Bob in The Simpsons when questioned by the parole board about his "DIE BART DIE" tattoo, to which he tells them, "No, that's German for 'The Bart, The'."
Tag Team Championship: Prime Time Players vs. The New Day - One word... why? I'm not trying to be funny, I'm not sure if I've ever seen a Prime Time Players tag match before. I don't watch Smackdown, Main Event or any of the other B or C shows, I only watch Raw and PPV's, and I honestly couldn't tell you a match I've ever seen with them (I probably have, but couldn't for the life of me tell you). New Day are so over right now and their pre-match mic work I thought was fantastic. I was busy building an Ikea table while this match was on as the thought of a title change didn't even enter my consciousness. Why on earth they thought it was necessary to end their reign as champs right now for a couple comedy jobbers, is beyond me.
WWE Title: Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins - Firstly, I must once again voice my displeasure for having two of the same gimmick matches on the same show. Don't understand the mentality of it at all as the main event guys are always in a difficult position by the end of the show. The crowd was pretty much spent by this match and this didn't feel half as important as the Cena vs Owens match. The WWE title has felt weak since Brock lost it since Seth has been booked so weak as champ. I figured this would be the match where they'd finally let him get a clean, strong win. Match felt a bit dead until near the end, and even then you could hear the crowd get a half-assed "this is awesome" chant going for about 5 seconds before giving up (it really wasn't "awesome" at that point). Ending felt a bit anti-climatic as it wasn't really clear at first about the "football receiver" rule. When they both fell off at first I thought it was like the Luger/Bret thing from the Rumble and they'd hold the belt up or something along those lines. It was fine when they explained it in the replays, but in terms of actually watching it in the moment, I didn't feel it worked.
- Tim Duley in Toronto
Thumbs Up overall
Best Match: Owens vs. Cena 2
Worst: Show vs. Ryback
I was so intrigued on how WWE was going to celebrate the life of Dusty on this show, and I feel personally they did a great job. I am hoping tomorrow they dedicate more segments to him. I Was not to high on Paige's promo dedicating the match to Dusty, then having a screw finish. That was just very unnecessary to take a highly emotional, heart felt promo, and not follow it up with what could of been such an amazing moment.
The MITB Ladder Match was like Dave said, much safer, and less dramatic. I'm not sure what is going to transpire with Bray and Roman, as it seems Bray is just a transitional character to get others over at this point. I can't understand the logic, but let's be fair, and see where it goes. The same could be said of Sheamus winning the match. How, and where he will fit into the big picture is puzzling at this time. For Dolph, this wasn't his best ladder match work than in previous years. Kofi, and Neville both proved to be MVPs in this match.
As I wrote earlier, with Paige delivering the promo dedicating her win for Dusty, they should of made this a huge moment for her. It's the best and only scenario for tonight's match. It didn't however go down like that. I will say this, Nikki did a very good job working tonight. I saw a huge improvement in her work rate. It wasn't a bad match IMO, but the finish left a bitter taste in my mouth. Where they go from here is anyone's guess. The only thing that makes sense booking wise is calling Sasha or Charlotte up to restructure the women's division. With the Total Divas storylines, the landscape may not change for a while.
The less said about the Intercontinental Title Match the better. It seemed like WWE was actually emphasizing importance of the title for the last few months. That all went to hell after this match.
I'm so glad they are letting Owens be himself. I can't recall someone from the indies coming in, and keeping the majority of their characteristics. Both men worked so hard in this bout. Whoever produced the layout for this deserves credit, along with both wrestlers. Between this match, and the Main Event, I am noticing more of a PWG/Fighting Spirit layout in certain matches. There were more kick outs of big moves, finishers, and more complex spots. Michael Cole did a very good job selling the fact while Cena won, with the aftermath going down the way it did, Owens is what people are talking about, and going to remember after tonight's performance. I'm a huge fan of Owens, and I feel that how Lesnar is believable in his role, Owens is comparable in that he is someone that is being booked as a kick ass take no names character. I am really looking forward to see Owens career ascend here in WWE.
The Tag Title match had low expectations going into it for me, and others. I personally feel they did the switch was because of O'Neil winning the best dad award. I really want to get into the PTP, and can only hope the creative writes something compelling for them. This is another head scratcher, as New Day should of retained for the obvious reasons.
Ambrose and Rollins had a good Main Event match. The selling Ambrose did on his knee was reminiscent of what makes a great story being told in a match. Both men belong on top, and that was never more evident than tonight's match. Personally, the believability got lost when Ambrose got power bombed multiple times outside and got up. I'm all for the Fighting Spirit booking, it just makes it hard when big moves aren't sold as finishes. Like Austin said, selling is becoming less and less important with the lone exception of Ambrose's knee. I am again curious in going to see how Ambrose is booked going further, as he along with Wyatt don't have a great track record on being booked strongly.
WWE Money in the Bank: Thumbs Up
Best Match: Owens vs. Cena
Worst Match: Ryback vs. Show
Not a great show, but still good mostly due once again to Kevin Owens vs. John Cena. I guess the names of the events are not that important since they put the namesake on in the first match. Solid match, but not as good as past MITB matches. I don't like how the entire match mostly felt like everyone was outside and ony two guys were in and they would just trade off. At least have a few spots where more guys are fighting. Sheamus winning was lackluster for me. I know Reigns was the obvious choice, but having him continue to lose everytime doesn't help even if Wyatt got involved. Wyatt apparently is always the answer to stop someone and now this will be another filler feud since Bray never actually gets to move anywhere or get a title opportunity. He is at a stand still. Divas Title was actually not bad overall until the ref deal at the end. I don't mind the Twin Magic thing, but when the ref sees the interference and allows the match to continue and then counts the fall it just seems really bad. I guess they can work that into another return match. They should do a Divas Cage match or something different for a change to keep Brie out even though we know cages don't keep anyone out nowadays. Ryback vs. Big Show was really bad and the Miz's involvement didn't help any. This is one of the worst feuds ever. It is impressive however to see Show get suplexed. A DQ finish in this match was so bad. Cena vs. Owens stole the show again and even though I am not a fan of Owens losing this quickly at least he looked great and got to beat down Cena after. I guess we will get a third go around at Battleground. Shouldn't they save something for Summer Slam unless they are doing a fourth match. I love that superplex reversal that Owens does. Tag Title match was nothing much. I really don't think they should have switched the titles. New Day finally had some momentum and these guys haven't been used effectively for most of their entire stays with the company up until this point. Nothing wrong with PTP, but New Day should have retained. Main Event was solid and I like both Ambrose and Rollins. Was kind of slow paced for a while and I do hope Dean gets a real shot at the title at some point, but I'm not holding my breath. I guess Rollins isn't ready to turn face and probably shouldn't since the heel side still has basically him and Owens and no one else.
I thought this was a pretty good show. Cena v. KO was the highlight,
and they great job in both protecting Owens despite the loss and
keeping him heel despite his tremendous performance. That's the kind
of good booking WWE all too often seems to forget how to do. Also kind
of telling the best match on the show was a one on one wrestling
match, no ladders involved. WWE's reliance on stunts and plunder is
becoming less and less effective.
Speaking of which, the MITB match was fine but the bar had been raised
so high for these kind of matches in terms of dangerous spots that
playing it as safely as they did comes off kind of dull. I don't want
these guys to kill themselves, of course, but it's probably past time
to rethink presenting these kind of matches so regularly. The main
event was better. Very good though it went a bit long. I was sure they
were going home soon after Rollins was backdropped though the ladder.
Having a ladder match earlier on the card probably lessened the crowd
reaction but they seemed into it by the end.
Everything else: Divas match was decent, definitely above average for
WWE Divas standards though not close to Banks/Lynch for the last NXT
show. I guess the finish was an homage to Dusty. (All the tribute
stuff to him tonight was terrific.) Tag match was just kind of there.
The New Day's shtick is great so I don't understand putting the belts
on the PTP. At least they had Titus do the hot tag and little else as
selling isn't his strong point. Didn't watch Big Show/Ryback as I put
of Game of Thrones instead. By all accounts, it seems like I made a
Staten Island, NY
How you doin' Dave,
Good show. Thought Owens-Cena was very good but not at the level of the first. I'm probably gonna come across as a bit of an old man whom the business has passed by despite being thirty years of age with this bit of a diatribe, but what the hell. I felt they worked too fast throughout, it was although I was watching the match at 1.5 speed, they were kicking out of codebreakers, reverse suplexes and electric chair drops 5 minutes in, which combined with the speed of the match didn't sit well with me. If you want to do an all out spot fest that's fine with me providing the balance is there between selling and big moves, but I didn't feel it was in this case due to the speed they were going from spot to spot. At this time I was actually questioning whether they'd been given ten-twelve minutes.
Also from about eight minutes in it was big move, kickout, sell for ten seconds, move around for ten seconds, other guy hits a big move, kickout, sell for ten seconds, move around for ten seconds, other guy hits a big move and so on. I felt it got very repetitive. Admittedly they followed this pattern during the first match, but it was for a lesser period during the first match, and they took more time to sell in between the nearfalls during the first match. In addition in the previous match they broke up the sequence on a few occasions with the punch-for-punch yeah-boo spot, and they built up to the nearfalls more with greater amounts of elementary stuff early on. Anyway that's the end of my rant, thought it was very good but not to my taste.
Thought the MITB match was good but not at level of some in previous years. Thought the women had an ok match and thankfully they were given time, but the match lacked intensity and aggression. It was kind of like they were just going through the motions as well as it wasn't overly crisp. Thought IC title match was decent until the finish, tag title match was ok, main event was very good, although they were given a lot of time to fill and I wasn't overly keen on the finish as well as a few other things. I thought with the lack of interference this was an opportunity to finally give Rollins some credibility as champion, but instead they went with the lucky victory. And as he's a heel champion if they weren't going to give him some credibility, they meres well have had some interference or whatever to put greater heat on him.
Best Match: Cena vs. Owens ***3/4
Worst Match: Big Show vs. Ryback **
WWE Money In The Bank Feedback
Best Match: John Cena vs Kevin Owens
Worst Match: Ryback vs Big Show
This was a fun show, especially based on the Cena vs Owens match. Owens has quickly elevated himself into being Cena's best opponent since Punk. They complement each other so well and I hope this builds to an awesome Summerslam program.
The divas match was ok but nothing special. But Paige with her dedications to Dusty upped the profile of the match.
It was cool to see Ryback pull out a cross armbreaker but that is about it for the IC title match, too much Miz.
I liked the main event, Rollins is probably having the best title reign since the titles were unified and Ambrose is a great challenger. The drama was good here as I honesty could have seen either guy win.
As for the MITB match itself, I am enjoying Sheamus' current run but having MITB doesn't seem to add anything. It would have been fun to see Neville win but he's not likely to be champ in the next year. Reigns would have been sensible but that is something they have to work around right now. The match was fun but overall I think the gimmick is played out
Dave Musgrave, Oshawa, Ontario
Thumbs up show.
Best match: Owens vs. Cena
Worst match: Ryback vs. Big Show for the lame finish.
With it being a Dusty tribute night, they certainly gave us a few Dusty Finishes. Great tributes to him aside from those stinkers in the IC and Divas matches.
Steen/Owens is a hell of a worker; Cena is always good. These matches are up there with Cena's feud with Edge about eight years ago. I am very happy for Owens, and have seen him countless times in person at ROH events and TV tapings; he deserves it.
I find it funny that WWE now is saying
they will not be looking at ROH talent. Pretty much the only real talent they have is a product of ROH. Imagine if they didn't exist, WWE's roster would be shite. Speaking of which, one of the Tough Enough finalists is the husband of my wife's friend. He's probably never seen ROH.