Archive for the WWE Category

WWF at Maple Leaf Gardens 10/21/84

Posted in WWE with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 12, 2015 by Chui

Jack Reynolds and Billy Red Lyons are on commentary.

WWF Intercontinental Championship Match: Greg “The Hammer” Valentine (c) vs. “Special Delivery” S.D. Jones. Reynolds that there are a number of “Orientals” at ringside to cover the match. They trade hammerlocks. You’d think Valentine would be the master of that particular hold.  Jones shines a bit, throwing the champion around and beating him up. Jones works the arm and lands some headbutts to Valentine’s back. Valentine goes to work on the leg in order to soften up Jones for the figure-four. Jones escapes leg torture and makes his comeback. Valentine bails. Jones follows him out and sends him into the barricade. Back inside, Valentine hits a backdrop suplex for the pin in about 9 minutes. You can’t hear the bell on this show. The crowd is upset, but Valentine won clean as a sheet. Good match. I love me some Hammer Valentine. **3/4

Nikolai Volkoff vs. Rocky Johnson. Punches. Volkoff with a nerve hold. Johnson, the only one with any athleticism to contribute to this match, flies around a bit for Volkoff. Johnson gets a sunset flip that the announcer calls a small package. Johnson with a crab hold, but he almost put Volkoff on top of the ropes in the process. They do a test of strength, then Volkoff goes on the attack. Johnson avoids Volkoff in the corner, then spreads his legs and stomps on him. Looked like it was in the balls to me, but the referee says otherwise. Back and forth. Volkoff with a double axe handle off the middle rope for two. Volkoff hot shots Johnson into the top rope for the pin in about 9 minutes. **1/4

Goldie Rogers & Bobby Bass vs. Dynamite Kid & Davey Boy Smith. They aren’t even called The British Bulldogs at this point! Dynamite with some sweet maneuvering and dropkicking against Rogers to start. Smith shows his power against Bass, then rams Bass’ head into Dynamite’s. Bass tries to tag out. Rogers is reluctant, but eventually obliges. He probably shouldn’t have, as the Bulldogs put a beating on him. Bass comes in and takes a headbutt from iron-skulled Dynamite. Bass tries to make a save and hits his partner. Smith hits the running powerslam on Rogers for 2, then applies a rear chin lock. Rogers and Bass actually cut Smith off and get some heat on him. The interesting part of the match has concluded for the moment. Dynamite gets the hot tag and headbutts Rogers into next week. Bass refuses to tag in. Dynamite goes for a piledriver on the ramp, but gets backdropped. Back inside, Bass tags in and goes for a diving headbutt. Dynamite avoids it. Smith tags in, avoids a headbutt from Bass, and hits a pildedriver. Dynamite tags in. Rogers comes in. Smith gets him up a fireman’s carry. Dynamite comes off of Roger’s back with a diving headbutt on Bass for the pin in about 10 minutes. It was good except for the heat segment. Bulldogs looked great here. **1/2

Steel Cage Match: Kamala (w/ Kim Chee) vs. Andre the Giant. The announcers apparently don’t know Kim Chee’s name, as they keep calling him “Friday,” as in “Man Friday.” Andre beats up Kamala. Kamala rallies, lands a big splash, and doesn’t understand why the referee isn’t counting. The referee is not, in fact, inside the cage. This is a WWF cage match, in which the objective is to run away. Kamala beats up Andre. Andre beats up Kamala. Kamala beats up Andre. Andre is bleeding. Repeat ad nauseam. Andre chokes Kamala. They fight some more. Andre slams Kamala. Andre with an elbow drop. Andre with a really horrible looking failed diving ass drop. Andre leaves to end this in about 14 minutes. Really bad.

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WWF at Madison Square Garden 4/6/81

Posted in WWE with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 12, 2015 by Chui

Vince McMahon is commentary. Howard Finkel is the ring announcer.

WWF Intercontinental Championship Match: Pedro Morales (c) vs. Moondog Rex (w/ Captain Lou Albano). Moondog King failed to unseat Morales last month, so now Rex is taking a shot. Albano is escorted to the back for being crazy or something. Rex holds a headlock for about an hour, then goes to work on the champ’s arm. Vince says that Morales is having more trouble with Rex than he did with King. King beats on Morales for about a week. Morales finally makes a comeback, then gets an inside cradle for the pin in 9:29. 1/2* because it wasn’t completely worthless.

Sergeant Slaughter (w/ The Grand Wizard) vs. Pat Patterson. Patterson is a fiery babyface. He wants some of Slaughter, but Slaughter appears to want none of it. Slaughter sneaks around and tries to jump Patterson from behind, but gets his ass kicked. Patterson fights dirty with chokes, closed fights, and even a bite to Sarge’s hand. Patterson catapults Sarge into the turnbuckles and scores a 2 count. Somebody is blowing a whistle. Is Bill Alfonso around? Patterson applies a crab hold. Back to their feet. Patterson hits a shoulder block and goes for another. Sarge avoids it and sends him crashing to the outside. Slaughter threatens to dive off the top rope to the floor, but thinks better of it and settles for a kick off the apron. Slaughter is trying to win by count out. He covers his ears to drown out the crowd’s boos. Patterson makes it back in and Sarge goes to work on him. Slaughter goes for a diving knee drop, but Patterson avoids it. Patterson locks in a figure-four leglock. Slaughter suffers, but makes the ropes. They brawl outside. Patterson hits Sarge with a chair, which is apparently fine if you’re on the outside. Back inside, Patterson shoves the ref twice. Sarge rakes his eyes. They brawl. Slaughter shoves the ref. Slaughter and Patterson both throw the ref out of the ring. Sarge applies the Cobra Clutch. The ref comes back in and Slaughter immediately kicks him in the groin. Apparently there are rules, as the referee finally calls for the bell. It’s a double DQ in 13:30. Even in 1981, this company hated finishes. Patterson is angry at the ref. Vince assures us that Pat will apologize to the ref once he cools off. **1/2

Steel Cage Match for the WWF Heavyweight Championship: Bob Backlund (c) (w/ Arnold Skaaland) vs. Stan Hansen. Finkel announces that the winner will be the one who successfully runs away. Hansen jumps Backlund immediately, but Backlund throws him into the cage and generally kicks his ass. Back and forth brawl. Backlund hits a piledriver and tries to escape. Hansen hits him the ding ding. Lots of ramming of heads into the cage. Hansen bleeds. Backlund avoids an elbow drop. More brawling. Backlund escapes to win in 8:52. Fun brawl. Hansen is none the worse for wear because a cage match where the objective is to run away is fucking stupid. **1/2

“Pretty Boy” Larry Sharpe & “The Unpredictable” Johnny Rodz vs. Tony Garea & Rick Martel. Martel and Roz start. Both sides tag in and out. The heels, Sharpe & Rodz, cut Martel off and get the heat on him. Garea gets a lukewarm tag. Rodz sucks him and lets him crash into the corner. Now they’re working over Garea. Martel gets a much more lively hot tag and runs wild. Clusterfuck ensues. Martel and Garea send the heels into each other. Martel pins Sharpe with a jackknife hold in 7:05. **1/2

It was way more interesting than the show I watched previously.

WWWF at the Spectrum 3/25/78

Posted in WWE with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 12, 2015 by Chui

After the WWE Network opening, it’s straight to the ring for the first match.

Vince McMahon and Dick somebody are commentating.

WWWF Heavyweight Championship Match: Bob Backlund (c) (w/ Arnold Skaaland) vs. “The Golden Greek” Spiros Arion. It’s been a little over a month since Backlund won the title from Superstar Graham. Vince is positively gushing over his new champion. Arion declines to shake hands. Backlund wins the lock up, then they trade waist locks. Arion uses the ropes to escape danger. Backlund keeps going back to his vice-like waist lock. He gets a near fall off a backslide. Arion resorts to a choke hold to get the advantage, then slams the champion and hammers him with punches. Backlund gets an inside cradle for 2. Arion takes a powder. They do a test of strength. Arion throws a kick, but Backlund catches it and drops him. Arion gets the advantage briefly, until Backlund scores a sunset flip for a near fall. Backlund catches another kick and goes to work on the leg. The crowd responds very well to leg work. Stuff meant something back now, kids. Back on their feet, Arion exposes a turnbuckle and sends the champion’s head into it. For some reason, the referee is completely fine with this. Arion kicks Backlund in the balls and Backlund sells it appropriately. Backlund takes a spill outside and barely beats the count in. Arion finally has the initiative. Backlund escapes a backbreaker and horribly botches a backslide. The champ makes his comeback and hits a piledriver for 2. Backlund sort of bulldog-rams Arion’s head into the turnbuckle, then hits the atomic drop. The ref gets knocked out by Arion’s foot in the process, and is unable to make the count. Backlund goes to check on the ref, giving Arion an opening to jump him from behind. They brawl. Chief Jay Strongbow, Peter Maivia, Stan Stasiak, and another wrestler come out to break up the fight. Another referee comes in and calls for the bell. It’s a double DQ in 17:48. The time is announced at 16:28. This timekeeper was the shits. The match was kind of entertaining. **1/2

We’re back now after intermission.

Ken Patera vs. Bruno Sammartino. Patera jumps Sammartino before the bell. Sammartino rallies and Patera bails. Back inside, Patera misses a knee drop and Sammartino goes after the injured body part like a shark. Patera comes back and misses an elbow drop. Sammartino arm drags him, and Patera bails again. More desultory strong guy punch-kick. Sammartino works a head lock. I’m bored. Patera applies a bear hug. Bruno won’t give up, but I’m tempted to. Unfortunately, the keep fighting. This is my life. These are my choices. They brawl outside. They brawl inside. They brawl outside. Somebody throws a chair. The bell rings. They keep brawling. It’s a double count-out in 14:35 of my life I’ll never get back. They announce the time at 16 something. Could have been 14 minutes, 16 minutes, or 3 days. *

Nikolai Volkoff vs. Haystacks Calhoun. Calhoun is a very large man from Morgan’s Corner, Arkansas, so he’s a man after my own heart. The youngest Nikolai Volkoff I’ve ever seen gets the jump on the larger man. They fight a bit. Calhoun squashes Volkoff in the corner. Haystacks falls on Volkoff for the pin in 2:39. DUD. They actually get the time correct.

And that’s the end. Wow. This was a good use of my time.

If anyone actually reads this and thinks I should keep reviewing stuff, leave a comment or tweet me @TheRealChui.

WWWF at Madison Square Garden 6/27/77

Posted in WWE with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2014 by Chui

WWE Old School intro.

Announcer Vince McMahon introduces the show.

Howard Finkel, sporting a powder blue suit and a full head of hair, is the ring announcer.

Jan Nelson vs. Jose Gonzalez.  I assume this is the same Jose Gonzalez who would murder Bruiser Brody in a dirty bathroom 11 years later.  He’s a big babyface here in New York.  An “Old School Flashback” in the bottom right corner informs me that Kanye West was born this month, June 1977.  That’s unfortunate for the world.  But I digress.  Gonzalez is the more experienced grappler, while Vince touts Nelson as a future star.  I don’t know that Nelson ever lived up to that.  Gonzalez makes the heel Nelson look foolish, and you can hear Nelson Muntz guffaw in the crowd more than a decade before The Simpsons debuted.  Lots of good ol’ fashioned arm work in this match. as Nelson works an arm lock for several minutes.  Gonzalez fights back with some arm wrangling of his own.  Nelson quickly cuts him off and then beats him  up.  Gonzalez avoids a charge in the corner and makes his comeback.  Gonzalez hits four dropkicks and scores the pin in 9:46.  *3/4

Rocky Tomayo vs. Larry Zbyszko.  Holy crap, Larry is young here.  I’ve never heard of Rocky Tomayo.  More basic, old fashined grappling.  They actually do a bit of chain wrestling, which always makes me giddy.  This is actually kind of fun.  Larry is a fiery young babyface here, very quick to take Tomayo down and grab a hold.  Of course, this is Larry Zbyszko, so there is some stalling.  Tomayo endures a lot of trauma to his hamstrings.  Larry catches Tomayo with an inside cradle for the pin in 7:30.  Man, this referee counts slow.  **1/4

Tony Garea vs. George “The Animal” Steele.  Fiery young babyface Garea is ready to fight, which befuddles the Animal.  Steele stalls a bit, then gets the advantage on Garea by wrestling heelishly.  Garea makes a fiery comeback.  The referee DQ’s Steele in 7:22 for hitting Garea with a foreign object.  Steele continues to lay the beating on.  Garea rallies and runs the big man off.  **

2/3 Falls: Ken Patera & Nikolai Volkoff (w/ Captain Lou Albano) vs. Andre the Giant & Chief Jay Strongbow.  The babyfaces run Albano off during the introductions.  This seems to be a grudge match.  Patera stalls a long time before getting in the ring to start the match.  Vince calls Strongbow a “fired up redskin.”  The ’70s were a different time.  Strongbow gets Patera in his own hold, the full nelson.  Patera escapes.  Andre tags in and puts Patera in the full nelson.  Patera manages to make the ropes.  Volkoff tags in.  The heels try to cut off Andre in their corner, but Andre is a giant, so he’s like “fuck that.”  Strongbow comes in.  Volkoff puts a hurting on him briefly.  Andre tags in and bear hugs Volkoff.  Volkoff gets free, but Andre punches him the face.  Strongbow tags back in and gets caught on the wrong side of town.  Andre gets a hot tag at point, but the referee didn’t see it.  Heels continue getting the heat on Strongbow.  Andre finally gets the tag and runs… well, he doesn’t really run wild, but he wrecks shit like a destructive giant briefly.  Clusterfuck breaks out, largely involving Strongbow running into Andre, causing him to shoulder block both heels in the corner.  Andre goes for a big splash on Patera, but Patera avoids certain death and makes the tag.  Strongbow comes in with a big babyface flurry and locks Volkoff in a sleeper hold.  Patera saves, but gets his man DQ’d in 13:46.  My stream turns shitty, which is just lovely.  After I get it straightened out, Volkoff and Patera get into it at ringside.  Presumably, Volkoff is pissed that Patera cost them the fall.  Insta-commercials.  Strongbow and Volkoff start the second fall.  Andre hold Volkoff for Strongbow to hit him, which is illegal.  The heels are still not getting along.  Patera shoves Volkoff.  Volkoff takes a swing at him.  Volkoff goes to leave the ring, but Patera clubber his back from behind.  Patera leaves.  Andre gives Volkoff a big boot and a splash for the pin in a little over two minutes.  Finkel gives the total time as 16:25.  Fun match.  **3/4

Lenny Hurst vs. Stan “The Man” Stasiak.  This is Hurst’s MSG debut.  I wonder if he ever made it back.  Stasiak is a former WWWF Champion, and the father of a guy who would someday run into shit in backstage segments.  Stasiak is from Buzzard Creek, Oregon, which is a great name for a wrestling hometown.  Vince touts the 225 lb Hurst as the lightest wrestler in the WWWF.  I’ll bet he wishes that were still the case today.  Anyway, Stasiak is the ornery old heel, Hurst is the fiery young babyface, and they work the match accordingly.  Hurst delivers a dropkick that sends Stasiak to the apron.  Stasiak comes back in and puts a beating on the young man.  Hursts makes his comeback, then eats a boot to the face.  Stasiak lands the heart punch for the pin in 7:55.  **

Vince interviews WWWF Champion “Superstar” Billy Graham (w/ The Grand Wizard) in the ring prior to his match.  I’m almost certain I’ve seen this interview before.  “I am the man of the hour, the man with the power, the man too sweet to be sour.”

WWWF Heavyweight Championship Match: “Superstar” Billy Graham (c) (w/ The Grand Wizard) vs. Bruno Sammartino (w/ Arnold Skaaland).  Bruno has a mustache and a Jew fro here.  I think this is 2 months after Graham took the title from Bruno in Baltimore.  Graham taunts Bruno with the belt, and by god, Bruno wants that belt back.  The beauty of this is that Graham cheated Bruno out of his belt, so Bruno is PISSED OFF and wants it back.  He does not laugh it off and talk about how championships come and go.  Bruno attacks Graham to jumpstart the match and MSG comes UNGLUED.  Graham manages to subdue Bruno with a full nelson.  Vince notes that this hold is attacking Bruno’s neck, which was broken not all that long ago by Stan Hansen.  Bruno reverses it and almost puts the champ down with it.  Graham manages to avoid having his arm drop the third time and gets to his feet, but Bruno keeps the hold.  Graham finally manages to get free and takes a powder.  Graham comes back and manages to get the advantage, putting pressure on Bruno’s back and arms.  Bruno again reverses Graham’s hold and puts the pressure on him.  Graham manages to get some momentum going and puts the boots to Bruno.  They work a bear hug for a bit.  Bruno takes a spill to the outside, and Graham tries to keep him there.  Bruno gets back in and goes on the attack.  Graham begs off to no avail.  Graham rallies, but knocks down the referee in the process.  The guys brawl and the referee tries to break it up, only to get taken down repeatedly.  The ref finally calls for the bell in 18:15.  It’s a double DQ.  Fun strong guy match.  **3/4

Baron Von Raschke (w/ Freddie Blassie) vs. Ivan Putski.  Putski’s beer belly is a little bit less prominent here than on the last show I saw.  Raschke is announced as the “European Heavyweight Champion” 20 years before the WWF actually created a European Championship.  These two went to a 20 minute draw previously, so now we’ve got a 30 minute time limit.  Oh dear.  Blassie is taken to the back before the match starts, for some reason.  Raschke has a gimmick in his hand.  Putski informs the referee of such.  Raschke successfully conceals it on his person.  They finally lock up after a lot of stalling.  They also work the lockup for a long time.  This is going to be a long one.  Raschke with some desultory leg work.  Putski with a rear chin lock, then transitions into some kind of wonky head scissors hold.  Putski finally wakes up and shows some babyface fire.  They go back and forth a bit.  It goes to a 30 minute time limit draw in 19:13.  I don’t care if they lied about the time, I missed some editing, or what.  I don’t need to see these two wrestle for another minute ever.  Putski, that son of a bitch, calls for one more minute.  They brawl a bit.  Raschke takes a powder.  Long and boring.  *3/4

Baron Mikel Scicluna vs. “High Chief” Peter Maivia.  Maivia is making his MSG debut.  His now-five year old grandson would later go on to some success in pro wrestling and Hollywood.  Scicluna gets the jump on him.  Maivia quickly rallies and kicks some ass.  Scicluna tries to use an object, but fails.  Maivia avoids Scicluna in the corner and pins him with a prawn hold in 1:08.  It’s announced at 2:09, which is a lie.  DUD

2/3 Falls: Dominic Denucci & Haystacks Calhoun vs. Mr. Fuji & Professor Toru Tanaka.  Calhoun’s kayfabe hometown is Morgan’s Corner, Arkansas, which endears him to me.  I know of all of these guys, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen any of them wrestle.  Denucci and Tanaka brawl.  Denucci applies a full nelson and allows Calhoun to hit a lackadaisical punch.  Tanaka beats on Denucci a bit.  Denucci fires back with Mongolian chops.  Fuji tags in and hits a “Kamikazi Necktie” (think Sling Blade) for the pin in 3:06.  Denucci makes a comeback as the second fall starts.  Tanaka and Fuji double team Denucci in the corner.  Calhoun comes in to help out, but only distracts the referee.  We’ve got a curfew draw in 1:00 of the second fall!  Calhoun comes in to beat the heels up for a bit, having never actually tagged in to the match.  Fuji & Tanaka win the match, having won the only fall in a 2/3 falls match.  3/4*

And there’s another 1970s WWWF show from the Network.  There’s one more show from the 70s, then we’ll move into the 80s.

WWWF at Madison Square Garden 3/17/75

Posted in WWE with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 8, 2014 by Chui

“WWE Old School” opening.  This is from the WWE Network.

Straight to the ring introductions for our first match.  A young Vince McMahon is the play-by-play man.  I have know idea who the ring announcer is, but he does the old school “repeat the guy’s last name” thing that Ken Anderson would turn into a gimmick 30 years later.

Paul “Butcher” Vachon vs. “Indian” Jay Strongbow.  Yes, “Indian” Jay Strongbow.  The ’70s were a different time.  Neither of these guys are what you’d call “in shape” by modern standards, but Strongbow is actively flabby.  The match is slow, plodding, and exactly what you’d expect from 1970s WWWF.   Vachon spends an impressive amount of time working a hold on the neck muscles.  Strongbow comes back and slams him around.  Vachon heels on Strongbow some more.  Vachon bites Strongbow, which is about as heelish as you can get.    Vachon gets a near fall, but pulls Strongbow up at 2.  He is immediately shown to have been a fool, as he shoots Strongbow into the ropes, but Strongbow catches him with a Thesz press for the pin in 6:26.  **

Texas Style Match for the WWWF Heavyweight Championship: Bruno Sammartino (c) (w/ Arnold Skaaland) vs. Spiros Arion (w/ Freddie Blassie).  Main event time!  You see, back now, the WWWF always puts the champion on before intermission at MSG, so they can announce the main event for the next card prior to the last match.  This is announced as a “Texas Style Match,” which I assume means it’s a Texas Death Match.  Despite that stipulation, the referee still checks the wrestlers for weapons.  Arion takes advantage of the situation by jumping Bruno before the bell, but Bruno immediately rallies and kicks his ass.  Arion cuts him off and gets the heat briefly.  The style here is pretty realistic, as they largely just kick the shit out of each other.  The momentum swings back and forth.  Maybe I’m imagining this, but there seems to be a lot of emphasis on liver/kidney attacks and blows to the lower back, which I enjoy a lot.  Bruno makes a big comeback with hip tosses and body slams.  Arion cuts him off, but Bruno comes back again with another body slam for the pinfall in 11:52.  Arion’s foot was in the bottom rope, but the referee didn’t see it.  I assume that will lead to a rematch.  I also don’t know what was “Texas” about this match.  The match time is announced as 14:52.  Either they’re lying, or exactly 3 minutes was cut out of this.  **1/2

Killer Kowalski (w/ The Grand Wizard) vs. Victor Rivera.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen Kowalski wrestle.  He’s very lanky.  The original tape here skips and goes wonky at a couple of points early.  Kowalski works the knee.  He’s a rather vicious fellow.  Rivera attacks Kowalski’s shoulder when the match is going in his favor.  At one point, Rivera gets Kowalski tied up in the ropes and beats him up a bit.  Kowalski breaks free and bites Rivera.  They brawl a bit.  Then they bite each other.  Kowalski bites Rivera again, and the ref calls for the DQ (13:04 shown).  So you’re allowed three bites until you get DQ’d?  Rivera is announced as the winner in 15:50-something.  *3/4

The Wolfman vs. Ivan Putski.  I have no idea who the Wolfman is.  Vince refers to Putski as a “one man gang.”  He also states that this is Putski’s wrestling debut.  I cannot confirm for deny.  Putski is 275 lbs., and most of that is his beer gut.  I miss fat wrestlers.  Putski grabs a headlock and hammers Wolfman in the head.  Repeat.  Putski with a shoulder block.  Wolfman cuts him and wins on him briefly.  Putski fights back with punches and headbutts.  Wolfman with bites and claws.  Putski retaliates in kind.  They beat on each other some more.  Putski gets the bear hug for the win in 5:51.  Fun little mean guy match.  **  Wolfman tries to attack Putski after the match, but gets punched in the face.  The match time is announced at 6:45.  Again, I didn’t notice any editing.  Putski drinks beer in the ring 20 years ahead of Steve Austin.

This was interesting.  Obviously, modern WWE is very different from 1975 WWWF, but fundamentally, they are very much alike.  The psychology of the Bruno match was much like a John Cena match today, and as I mentioned before, the show closed with a beer drinking, working man-type babyface.

The Chuiresu Diaries 10/17/12: Chicken Soup for the Wrestling Geek’s Soul

Posted in ECW, WWE with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 17, 2012 by Chui

I’m trying something different here.  I don’t get to write reviews often anymore due to being a very stressed college senior, but every now and then I get the chance to watch a little bit of Pro Wrestling and would like to share my thoughts on it.  So, from time to time, I may post what I’m calling a diary with short thoughts on whatever I happen to watch that day.  Full show reviews may still happen in the future, if I ever have free time again.

I picked the the ECW Unreleased Vol. 1 Blu-ray recently, and this evening I’m taking a few hours off from stressing about life, the universe, and everything to enjoy it for a bit.

Former ECW announcer and current WWE.com guy Joey Styles is hosting this thing.

NWA World Heavyweight Championship Tournament – Final: ECW Heavyweight Champion “The Franchise” Shane Douglas vs. 2 Cold Scorpio (Hardcore TV, August 27, 1994).  This was the night Extreme Championship Wrestling was born.  Douglas and Scorpio had a very watchable little back and forth wrestling match, which Douglas won with a belly to belly suplex in 12:52 after Scorpio missed a moonsault.  But the post-match promo is where it’s at.  Douglas refuses the title, saying the NWA is a dead organization.  He instead declares his ECW title to be a World title.  Soon after, Eastern Championship Wrestling became Extreme Championship Wrestling.

Tommy Dreamer vs. Raven (w/ Stevie Richards & Beulah McGillicutty) (Hostile City Showdown, April 15, 1995).  Fun little brawl.  Raven gives Dreamer 3 consecutive DDTs, but Dreamer kicks out.  Dreamer DDTs Raven on the floor, but Stevie interferes.  Dreamer DDTs Stevie and the referee, then Beulah runs in.  Dreamer gives her a piledriver and Philadelphia, apparently big fans of domestic violence, love it.  Raven is announced as the winner by DQ.  Joey Styles puts it over as a moral victory for Dreamer.  Stevie carries Beulah to the back instead of allowing her to be stretchered.

Joey Styles puts over the workrate guys like Dean Malenko and Eddie Guerrero who got their first shot in the United States in ECW.

2 Cold Scorpio & Dean Malenko vs. ECW World Television Champion Eddie Guerrero & Taz  (w/ Paul E. Dangerously) (Heat Wave, 7/15/95).  The audio on some of these is pretty bad.  You can hear the announcer, but not the guys talking on the microphone.  So the banter before this match is completely lost on me.  This reminds me, I used to love Taz.  There’s something awesome about a short, stout guy who’s a total ass kicker.  If this isn’t the match where Taz broke his neck, it’s the same configuration of guys.  3 minutes in Eddie and Malenko tag in and start chain wrestling and I vomit rainbows in joy.  Scorpio and Taz have an awesome mat exchange that ends with Scorpio getting suplexed out of his boots.  For that matter, every combination of these guys is awesome, but Malenko and Eddie are two of my favorite wrestlers of all time.  Malenko puts Taz in a Sharpshooter that Joey Styles misidentifies as a Texas Cloverleaf.  I expect better from you, Joey!  I love how they’re working a really good wrestling match, but not at such a fast pace that you can’t digest anything.  Eddie hits a brainbuster that Malenko sells awesomely by convulsing like he just had a seizure.  He apparently still has feeling in his body, because he managed to kick out of the frog splash that followed.  Determined to paralyze Malenko, Eddie dropkicks him off the top turnbuckle to the floor.  Taz and Eddie hit a dropkick Doomsday Device.  That’s kind of neat.  Another Malenko/Eddie exchange with another misidentified Sharpshooter.  Have I forgotten what a Texas Cloverleaf is?  Okay, I googled it.  Looks like I’m the idiot.  Sorry, Joey.  Scorpio hits a dive to the floor.  Malenko tries to do one, but appears to lose his nerve and goes with an elbow smash off the apron.  More dives.  Paul E. hits Scorpio with the cell phone.  Taz hits a head-arm suplex for the pin.  State appointed referee Bill Alfonso orders the match restarted.  Scorpio superkicks Taz and Malenko hits the Tiger Driver on Eddie.  Alfonso fast counts the double pin to give it to Malenko and Scorpio in about 20 minutes.  This was pretty damned good, much to the surprise of no one.

ECW World Television Championship Match: “The Shooter” Dean Malenko (c) vs. Eddie Guerrero (Hardcore TV, July 28, 1995).  This match is great.  Seeing wrestlers of this caliber bust their asses for the sake of having a good match reminds me why I love professional wrestling.  Guerrero catches Malenko with a jackknife hold for the pin to recapture the title 11:47.

Joey Styles puts over Cactus Jack, always my favorite face of Foley.

Cactus Jack vs. “The Franchise” Shane Douglas (CyberSlam, 2/17/96).  Douglas jumps Cactus, who is wearing a jacket and tie for some reason.  That quickly goes, but Cactus is wearing a shirt underneath.  Good.  I’ve never seen Mick Foley shirtless, and I never want to.  The referee is Brian Hildebrand (aka Mark Curtis), God rest him.  Cactus is wearing the “Forgive me, Uncle Eric” shirt that I remember reading about in his first book.  Joey notes that Cactus didn’t come to wrestle tonight, hence the jacket, tie, and cowboy boots.  They brawl.  Crutches, guardrails, and chairs come into play.  Douglas hits a dive from the top rope into the crowd onto Cactus.  I’ve never seen that out of him.  Cactus does the “spit in the air and catch it in his mouth” bit, which is disgusting.  Joey Styles calls it “Vintage Cactus Jack” here in 1996, so fuck you, Michael Cole.  The referee hands Douglas an international object, which Douglas clocks Cactus with.  They’re handcuffs!  Douglas handcuffs Cactus and picks up a chair.  Cactus tries to fight back, but gets murdered in the face with a chair not as badly as he did with The Rock at Royal Rumble 1999, but still…  Cactus calls for help from Vince McMahon (this was right before Foley went to the WWF).  Since Vince doesn’t come out to help, Cactus calls for Mikey Whipwreck.  Douglas is trying to make Foley say “I Quit.”  So this really IS like Rumble ’99.  Douglas locks in a figure-four leglock.  Mikey Whipwreck runs in with a chair and… murders Cactus in the face with it.  Hildebrand counts the pin while Cactus is still in the figure-four in 15:42.  This was fun.

“Lion Heart” Chris Jericho vs. 2 Cold Scorpio (The Doctor Is In, 8/3/96).  There’s too much dancing in Scorpio’s entrance for my enjoyment.  I don’t know anything about dancing, so I don’t know if it’s even good or not.  This must have been one of Jericho’s last matches before going to WCW.  Good wrestling here.  Jericho goes a really wonky submission hold that even Joey can’t identify.  Crowd chants “This show sucks!”  I have no idea why.  They do some near falls.  Scorpio kicks Jericho out of the ring to the floor and says he’s going to finish him.  Jericho stays in the game, though.  Jericho tries to spring off the top and hit Scorpio on the apron, but eats the floor instead.  Scorpio hits a diving leg drop that I thought might be the finish, but Jericho’s got some fight left.  Jericho hits his rebound from the turnbuckle into a dropkick to the apron deal.  There should be an easier way to say that.  Scorpio hits a sunset flip powerbomb off the top that wins i… NO!  OMGWTF JERICHO KICKED OUT.  More counters and near falls.  They do some mildly crazy bumps, such as when Jericho powerslams Scorpio off the top rope.  Scorpio hits a Tombstone Piledriver and a Shooting Star press for the pin in 19:58.  Okay, yeah, this was pretty good.

Joey Styles talks about Sabu.

Tables & Ladders Match for the ECW World Tag Team Championship: The Eliminators (c) vs. Sabu & Rob Van Dam (CyberSlam, 2/22/97).  Saturn says the winners of this match will be the best team in the world.  That’s a stretch.  Tables and ladders are legal in this match, so of course, RVD and Saturn start with back and forth wrestling while the partners stand politely on the apron.  They start bringing in the plunder and taking crazy bumps at around the 7 minute mark.  With these bumps into ladders, it’s no wonder Perry Saturn has always been a bit touched in the head.  Saturn splashes Van Dam off a ladder.  Sabu kicks the ladder into Kronus, then puts him through a table at ringside.  Joey with the classic “OH MY GOD!”  The Eliminators keep the title when Kronus pins RVD after 2 Total Eliminations in 20:40.  Wild and fun.

And now, a brief digression.  I was chatting with a friend on Facebook (shout out, Shawn!) about memories of early 2000s wrestling and the time that Triple H defended the WWF title against TAKA Michinoku on Raw popped into my head.  I searched YouTube, and…

WWF Championship Match: Triple H (c) (w/ Shane McMahon & WWF Women’s Champion Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley) vs. TAKA Michinoku (w/ Funaki & The Acolytes) (RAW IS WAR, 4/10/00).  TAKA is a mystery opponent.  He hires the Acolyte Protection Agency to watch his back and they immediately run off Shane McMahon.  This match is all kinds of fun.  TAKA gets his shine and Jim Ross convinces you that he has a shot to win the WWF title.  It doesn’t help that Hunter is being a real shit ass to referee Earl Hebner.  Earl lets it go when Funaki dropkicks Triple H into the APA and the APA beat the hell out of him.  Vince and Shane McMahon come out and distract the Acolytes.  The Big Boss Man and Bull Buchanan Pearl Harbor TAKA’s protectors, and Hunter hits the Pedigree for the pin in 5:53.  The dastardly heels put the boots to The Acolytes.  Man, this was fun and brought back fond memories of being a 12 year old WWF mark.

I’ve had a rough week and felt pretty miserable about life a few hours ago.  This heaping does of pro wrestling nostalgia was exactly what I needed.  I hope to find some free time again soon to watch the rest of the ECW set and the new CM Punk release.

WWE SummerSlam 2012

Posted in WWE with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 20, 2012 by Chui

New WWE open, which debuted on the 1,000th Raw.  Intro video for the 25th SummerSlam, which isn’t the 25th anniversary, but is billed as such because WWE doesn’t know how anniversaries work.  Pyro and ballyhoo.  We are LIVE from Los Angeles!  Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler are the announcers.

Vickie Guerrero comes out to scream at us.  I guess that means Ziggler vs. Jericho is up first.  They show clips of Ziggler winning the Money In The Bank Ladder Match last month.  Jericho comes out and they show a clip of Ziggler injuring Jericho’s ribs this past Smackdown.  Justin Roberts is a ring announcer.

Dolph Ziggler (w/ Vickie Guerrero) vs. Chris Jericho.  Jericho is sporting taped ribs from the aforementioned attack.  Ziggler runs around the ring and Jericho gives chase.  Back inside, Jericho catches him with an elbow smash and beats him up a bit.  Ziggler does a drop down and a leap frog, but Jericho catches him with a chop.  Ziggler avoids a suplex and attacks the injured ribs.  Jericho gets a reprieve by back body dropping Ziggler to the floor.  He goes for his rebound dropkick to the apron, but fails and eats the floor as Ziggler makes it back into the ring.  Ziggler continues to punish the ribs.  Vickie is obnoxious at ringside.  Ziggler hits a Rude Awakening, complete with gyrating hips, then pulls a Jericho classic on foot cover for 2.  Jericho gets whipped into the ropes, but catches Ziggler with a schoolboy for 2.  Ziggler charges Jericho in the corner, eats it, and Jericho gets a brief flurry.  Ziggler charges the corner again and eats Jericho’s boot.  Jericho follows with a diving elbow smash.  Ziggler sends Jericho into the post, then hits the Fameasser for 2.  Jericho goes for the Walls of Jericho, fails, but lands an enzuigiri for 2.  Ziggler avoids Jericho in the corner, jumps on his back, and clamps on the sleeper hold.  Jericho backs Ziggler into the corner to escape.  Ziggler kicks him in the ribs and goes up top.  Jericho cuts him off, pounds on him, and hits a top rope Frankensteiner~!  Delayed cover gets 2.  Ziggler catches Jericho out of nowhere with a swank DDT for 2.  They trade shots.  Jericho hits the bulldog and goes for the Lionsault.  Ziggler catches him in the injured ribs with raised knees, then hits the Zig Zag, but Jericho kicks out!  Jericho catches Ziggler with the Codebreaker.  Ziggler rolls to the floor.  Jericho throws Ziggler back into the ring.  Vickie grabs Jericho’s leg, allowing Ziggler to get an inside cradle for 2.  Jericho sends Ziggler into the post and locks in the Walls of Jericho.  Ziggler taps in 13:06.  Yes, Jericho won, but is this really “the big one?”  It made sense when Jericho did this angle with The Rock in 2001 and won the World title, but is the opening match of SummerSlam the same thing?  Good match, though.

Slim Jim commercial.

Los Angeles!

They show Brock Lesnar destroying Shawn Michaels on Raw last week.

Matt Striker interviews Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman.  Well, Paul does all of the talking.

Lillian Garcia is also a ring announcer.  The Spanish announcers, Carlos Cabrera and Marcelo Rodriguez, are present as well.

Daniel Bryan vs. Kane.  Kane has his dukes up, which amuses me.  Bryan kicks at the larger man’s legs.  Kane catches a kick and throws him down.  Bryan avoids an elbow and kicks him some more.  Kane punches him a bit.  Bryan backflips off the top rope, then gets slammed for 2.  Kane stomps Bryan in the corner.  Fans are chanting for Bryan.  Bryan fails at a reverse cradle and eats a big boot.  Cover gets 2 for Kane.  Bryan kicks at Kane’s knee some more.  Kane nonchalantly choke throws Bryan out of the ring.  Bryan gets back in as Kane comes out and takes him out with a tope suicide.  Back inside, Bryan hits a missile dropkick for 2.  Bryan lands more kicks as the crowd chants “YES!”  Kane ducks a critical blow and lands a clothesline.  Kane hits a sidewalk slam for 2.  Kane hits the diving lariat and goes for the chokeslam.  Bryan counters out and rolls to the apron, pulls Kane’s head over the top rope, then comes back in to eat a punch.  Bryan slaps Kane defiantly.  Kane beats the crap out of him in the corner until the referee forces a break.  Bryan takes the opportunity and goes on the offensive.  He goes for the LeBell/Yes/No Lock, fails, and settles for kicking Kane in the chest.  He gets annoyed at the “YES!” chants and goes for the diving headbutt.  Kane catches him by the throat and hits the chokeslam.  Instead of covering, he signals for the Tombstone.  Bryan counters it into an inside cradle for the pin in 8:03!  Bryan wins!  YES!  YES!  YES!  Fun little match.

Kane, pissed that lost, rampages around backstage.  Josh Matthews tries to interview him, but Kane grabs him by the throat, yells “WHERE?!  IS?!  HE?!” and throws him away, then continues his rampage.

Don’t drink and drive.

WWE Intercontinental Championship Match: The Miz (c) vs. Rey Mysterio Jr.  I think Mysterio’s costume is supposed to be Batman.  They lock up.  Miz lands a shoulder block.  Mysterio sits up and kind of stares at him.  They do a bit of wrestling that ends in Rey getting a near fall and Miz taking a quick powder.  Miz comes back in and gets to stompin’.  Rey hits a flying headscissors.  Miz throws Rey out of the ring.  Rey slides back in as Miz slides out, then dropkicks Miz through the ropes.  Miz sends Rey torso-first into the barricade.  Back inside, Miz goes to work.  Rey counters a backdrop and gets a 2 count.  Miz catches Rey with that lucha-style backbreaker that Jericho does on Rey for 2.  Miz beats on Rey some more.  Rey tries to make a comeback, but eats a clothesline, which gets a 2 count for Miz.  Miz hits his corner clothesline and goes up top, but Rey dropkicks Miz, crotching h im on the top turbuckle.  Rey hits the diving seated senton and goes for a rana, but Miz catches him with a powerbomb for 2.  Rey ducks a kick and gets a cradle for 2, then kicks Miz in the head for another 2.  Combine the two, and he got a 4 count, so he almost won under Canadian rules.  Rey hits a whirly DDT for 2.  Rey goes up top again, but gets caught.  Rey fights Miz off and hits a diving headscissors, which puts Miz into 619 position.  Rey hits the 619 and goes for the diving splash, but Miz avoids it.  Miz goes for the Skull Crushing Finale, but Rey turns it into a cradle for 2.  Miz launches Rey into the turnbuckles, then hits the Skull Crushing Finale for the pin in 9:10.  It was okay, but I never really got into it.

Plug for the WWE iPhone/Android app.  I downloaded it.  It’s not that interesting.

Teddy Long and Eve Torres walk out of the GM’s office and talk about how quirky AJ Lee is.  They walk away and WWE Champion CM Punk walks into the office.  He complains to AJ about being in a Triple Threat Match tonight.  She just cocks her head and stares off into space, ignoring him.

Sheamus/Alberto Del Rio hype video.

Ricardo Rodriguez introduces Alberto Del Rio for the World Championship match.

World Heavyweight Championship Match: Sheamus (c) vs. Alberto Del Rio.  They lock up.  Del Rio backs Sheamus into the corner.  Repeat.  They tumble out of the ring together and brawl on the floor.  Back inside, Sheamus hits a neckbreaker for 2.  Sheamus hits the Finlay Roll for 2.  Sheamus goes for the Razor’s Edge, but fails.  He ends up getting Del Rio up on his shoulders as Del Rio exposes the turnbuckle.  Sheamus counters the Minoru Special and misses the Brogue Kick.  Del Rio kicks Sheamus off the apron, then sends him knee first into the steps.  Back inside, Del Rio clamps on a rear chin lock.  Sheamus escapes and goes for another neckbreaker, but Del Rio kicks him in the knee, then in the head for 2.  They fight some more.  Del Rio is wearing black gear that looks reall weird on him for some reason.  He taunts Sheamus by doing the “Brogue!” taunt.  He teases a Brogue Kick, but Sheamus cuts him off.  Del Rio sends Sheamus’ shoulder into the post.  Sheamus tries to go up top, but gets cut off.  Del Rio hits an arm breaker (pulling the knees into the arm) off the top for 2.  There has to be a better name for that move.  Del Rio goes for his move, but Sheamus counters.  Del Rio counters the counter and hits the Minoru Special.  Sheamus powers up and slams Del Rio down.  Sheamus hits the White Noise (Schwein) for 2.  Sheamus goes for the Brogue Kick, but Del Rio avoids him.  Sheamus clubbers Del Rio in the chest.  Why hasn’t the referee fixed that exposed turnbuckle?  Oh, I see.  Del Rio drops Sheamus into the exposed buckle, then hits an enzuigiri, but Sheamus kicks out!  Del Rio roughs up Ricardo just because he’s a dick.  Sheamus hits Del Rio with Ricardo’s shoe, then hits the White Noise for the pin in 11:24, even though Del Rio’s foot was on the bottom rope.  That’s actually the finish?  Okay then.  Del Rio and Ricardo bitch at the referee, and rightfully so.  This match did not click with me at all.

Plug for the National Guard, or rather, how great WWE is for supporting the National Guard.

Cole and Lawler plug Night of Champions.

On the pre-show, Triple H told referee Scott Armstrong to not DQ or count anyone out tonight in his match with Brock Lesnar.

Last week on Raw, the Prime Time Players beat up R-Truth while Kofi Kingston was in China, then Touted about it.

WWE Tag Team Championship Match: Kofi Kingston & R-Truth (c) vs. The Prime Time Players.  Truth beats up Young to start.  O’Neil tags in and drops Truth with a boot, barks, and covers for 2.  Kofi tags in and keeps O’Neil off balance with his speed.  Kofi hits the Boom Drop and goes for the Trouble In Paradise, but Young distracts him.  Heel chicanery on the outside leads to the Players getting the advantage.  Kofi plays face in peril.  Young looks like he’s trying to get Kofi in some retarded triangle choke.  It fails completely, but he continues to put a beating on Kofi.  O’Neil tags in and applies an abdominal stretch.  Kofi turns a spinning slam into a spike DDT.  Truth gets the hot tag and runs wild on Darren Young.  Truth hits a front suplex.  Cover, but O’Neil saves.  O’Neil throws Kofi out of the ring, but Kofi skins the cat, low bridges him out, and takes him out with a dive.  Truth thinks about a dive, but Young schoolboys him for 2.  Young goes for something and fails, and Truth hits the Paydirt, whatever he’s calling it this week, for the pin in 7:07.  Players are nothing without AW.  This match was pretty close to nothing, too.

Axxess clips.

Punk/Cena/Show hype video.

Triple Threat Match for the WWE Championship: CM Punk (c) vs. John Cena vs. The Big Show.  Big Show beats up everyone to start.  Punk seems to be channeling Bret Hart with his pink gear.  Cena and Punk unite to try to suplex Show, but Show suplexes both of them at the same time.  Show wins on them some more.  Cena gets tossed out of the ring by Show and Punk makes a comeback until he stupidly goes for the Go 2 Sleep and fails.  Cena tries to give Show the Attitude Adjustment, but Punk pushes them over.  Punk covers Cena, but Show saves.  Show beats up Punk some more and throws Cena out of the ring again.  Punk avoids Show in the corner and goes for a springboard cross body, but Show catches him and hits the Final Cut.  Show signals for the KO punch, but Cena reappears and cuts him off.  Show spears Cena for 2.  Show goes for a Vader Bomb onto both opponents, but Punk avoids it and Cena takes the full brunt.  Punk breaks Show’s cover.  Show throws Punk out of the ring, then goes after Cena on the other side.  Punk tries a dive, but Show catches him and launches him into the ropes from the outside.  Awesome.  Show and Cena go at it in the ring.  Punk pulls Show’s head over the top rope, allowing Cena to hit a backdrop suplex.  LA crowd doesn’t like Cena.  Cena signals for the Five Knuckle Shuffle, but Punk cuts him off.  Punk hits the diving elbow drop on Show.  Cover, but Show throws him across the ring at 2.  Punk kicks Show in the head and locks in the Koji Clutch, of all things.  Show breaks out.  Punk takes a powder.  Cena hits Show with a shoulder block and locks in the STF.  Show stands and backs Cena into the corner.  Cena goes for a dive, but Show catches and slams him.  Punk drops Show with a diving lariat and hits him with 3 running knees to the corner, but Show counters the bulldog.  Cena hits Show with the diving Fameasser, but ends up on the apron.  Punk locks Show in the Koji Clutch.  Cena also applies the STF.  Show taps.  The referee calls for the bell, but there are 2 winners.  Cena and Punk argue with the referee.  Raw GM AJ Lee skips out and rules that the match must continue.  Show immediately chokeslams both me.  Cover on Cena gets 2.  Cover on Punk gets 2.  Cena ducks the KO punch and hits Show with the Attitude Adjustment.  Punk throws Cena out of the ring and pins Show in 14:28.  Very enjoyable match.  Punk celebrates.

Los Angeles!

Celebrities are here!  Including former WCW World Heavyweight Champion David Arquette and WrestleMania participant Maria Menounos (sporting a Bob Backlund shirt).

Trailer for WWE Films’ latest, The Day.

On the preshow, Antonio Cesaro beat Santino Marella for the WWE United States Championship, with help from Aksana.

Kevin Ruldolf (who?) performs the SummerSlam theme song.  People Dance like idiots.  The divas come out to dance: Tamina, Kaitlyn, Natalya, Aksana, Eve Torres, Kelly Kelly, Cameron, Naomi, Layla, Rosa Mendez, and Alicia Fox.

Los Angeles.

Triple H/Lesnar hype video.

Brock Lesnar (w/ Paul Heyman) vs. Triple H.  Brock immediately powers Triple H into the corner.  Hunter comes back with punches.  Brock repeats and goes for the Kimura.  Triple H counters.  Brock beats him in the corner some more and goes for it again.  He gets a standing version, but Hunter is in the ropes.  Triple H fights back and clotheslines Brock out of the ring.  Brock comes back in and beats up Triple H in the corner some more.  Hunter lands a knee lift and clotheslines Brock out of the ring again.  Lesnar looks irked.  Brock comes back in and takes off his gloves.  It’s a bare knuckle fight now!  Brock gets a double leg takedown and pummels Triple H with a few punches.  Hunter bails, selling a punch to the back of the head.  They brawl outside.  Brock gives Hunter a hammerlock slam onto the announce table.  The brawl some more back inside.  Brock delivers another hammerlock slam.  Brock continues working the arm.  Triple H counters an F-5 attempt, but Brock hits him with a BIG German suplex.  Brock stomps Triple H’s arm again.  Triple H tries to bail, gets caught, and pulls Brock against the top rope.  Hunter manages to score with a DDT.  Brock immediately goes after the arm again.  I always enjoy a hammerlock slam, and Brock is dishing them out liberally tonight.  They go outside and Lesnar sends Triple H into the post.  They wreck the Spanish announce table.  Brock actually jumps off of it and hits Triple H with a big chop.  Back in the ring, Triple H tries to fight back.  Lesnar gets an inside cradle of all things for 2.  Lesnar hits a clothesline and goes for a suplex, but Hunter counters and suplexes him.  Lesnar clotheslines the turnbuckle.  Triple H goes for the Pedigree, but fails, gets whipped into the corner, and does the Michaels flip out of the ring.  Brock takes a shot into the announce table on his stomach and starts dry heaving.  The announcers talk about his issues with diverticulitis.  Hunter goes after the midsection.  He hits some knee lifts to the stomach.  Triple H hits the spinebuster and goes for the Pedigree.  Lesnar counters and goes for the F-5.  Triple H counters and hits the Pedigree, but Lesnar kicks out.  Triple H goes for the Pedigree again, but Lesnar hits him square in the balls.  The referee, per Hunter’s request, is letting it go.  Lesnar hits the F-5, but Triple H kicks out.  Lesnar locks on the standing Kimura again.  Triple H tries to fight out, but Lesnar goes to the ground with it.  Triple H gets the ropes, but the ref isn’t enforcing the rules.  Hunter fights out of the hold.  Hunter hits the Pedigree and goes for the cover, but Lesnar gets the Kimura again.  Triple H taps in 18:45.  I’m absolutely shocked that they did the right thing and put Lesnar over.  The match was an intense brawl, but not on the level of Lesnar/Cena.  I’ll give it a thumbs slightly up.  Lesnar leaves.  Hunter refuses medical attention.  Fans chant “YOU TAPPED OUT!”, which is probably not what WWE was going for with this.  Hunter mouths “I’m sorry” and leaves to a mixture of boos and polite applause.

This show started well, dipped really low in the middle, peaked with the triple threat match, and ended okay.  I’d say the show as a whole is thumbs in the middle.