Seth Rollins / Dolph Ziggler Segment
The reaction that Seth Rollins receives from the audience gets wilder and wilder every time. The YOU SOLD OUT! chants were so loud that even with a microphone, Rollins would have had to yell to be outshout them. He had a better solution though. Mr. Money in the Bank silenced the crowd by chanting I SOLD OUT! back at them. And then the fans were ready to listen.
Seth’s character has been gradually changing ever since he affiliated himself with the Authority. In the beginning, he was denying that he “sold out”, hence the “Don’t sell out. Buy in” t-shirts. But now, Rollins has gotten comfortable with his choice and last night he was proud to say that he sold out and that won him a guaranteed ticket to becoming the future of the WWE.
Rollins talked about honor, being something that a young man believes in, but growing-up would make you understand that “honor doesn’t pay the bills”. This sort of talk leaves a bad feeling in my mouth, because, sadly, the real world works like that too. Ideals and principles are often thing that die with maturity and it makes me mourn for humanity. It also makes me respond to Rollins’ gimmick, which is what the WWE wants to happen.
After pointing out the human nature of selling out, Rollins moved onto Dean Ambrose. His promo was so full of hatred that it was actually believable. Seth vowed to turn Ambrose’s “hopes and dreams” into “a pile of rubble” at Hell in a Cell. The crowd started chanting Ambrose’s name while Rollins described how he’d turn him into a “hot, sweaty, smelly mess”.
At this point, you’d think it’s only logical for The Lunatic Fringe to come out and cut a promo. However, it was Dolph Ziggler, who confronted Mr. MITB. Dolph seems to be the only guy on the roster, who cared about principles. If you remember, when Seth betrayed Roman and Dean, it was always The Show Off to volunteer to face him on Main Event, because he didn’t condone Rollins’ actions.
Ziggler told Rollins that selling out gives you “money and fame” but you lose your self-respect. Rollins answered that respect didn’t help The Show Off on RAW and wouldn’t save him on SmackDown. The Intercontinental Champion was done talking by that time and delivered a standing dropkick to Rollins. The situation escalated so quickly that in seconds the two men had taken their shirts off and the bell had rang.
Dolph Ziggler vs. Seth Rollins
This match was really good. Dolph Ziggler kept charging at Rollins, building the energy up. The audience just loves his fast style. I have to say that with the reaction he gets, Ziggler is currently in the top 5 fan favorites. As a singles competitor, I’d say he’s just behind Cena and Ambrose when it comes to popularity.
Rollins was trying to slow down the pace and turn the momentum by outsmarting The Show Off. As a heel, Rollins has adopted a more grounded style (as much as it’s possible for a man, who feels most comfortable flying) and on a few occasions demonstrated sheer strength by overpowering Ziggler.
Dolph was attacking Rollins’ left knee, which supposedly was “tweaked” during the match. The steps, the barricade and the steel post were also involved in the fight, alongside some flying and outstanding athleticism from both men. The energy in the room made it feel like a pay-per-view rather than a simple SmackDown.
In the end, after a quick exchange, Rollins pulled off the curb stomp out of nowhere and pinned The Intercontinental Champion, under the sound of roaring boos.
Dean Ambrose/ Seth Rollins/ Kane Segment
Rollins was still celebrating his win over Ziggler when Dean Ambrose came out, contract in hand. It was an interesting image – Dean, holding a HIAC contract face to face with Seth, holding a MITB contract.
Rollins slipped out of the ring and retreated up the ramp, as expected. Ambrose claimed that he was there just to talk but mentioned that what he was going to do to Rollins at HIAC was not PG.
Before the situation could get heated, Kane interrupted them and put himself in a match against The Lunatic Fringe on SmackDown to compensate for the fact that he didn’t have a match at HIAC.
Then Kane poetically described how much he liked hurting people and how he was eager to hear Ambrose scream in pain. It was a great promo that a few years back would have made his opponents tremble in fear. Now, it meant absolutely nothing. It made me realize how much the Authority storyline has degraded Kane’s legacy. It’s just sad.
AJ vs. Layla w./ Paige & Alicia Fox on commentary
This was a revenge match, following AJ and Layla’s misfortunate partnership. This time the fans were chanting LET’S GO AJ instead of CM Punk for a change.
Paige said that she liked to see AJ struggle and sounded uncomfortably sexual. She was also flirting with JBL for some reason.
In the ring Layla missed a cross body from the 2nd rope and got locked in the Black Widow, which gave AJ a tap out victory.
Paige ordered Alicia to “go” and Foxy attacked AJ. While the Divas Champ was dealing with Alicia, Paige, attacked her from behind, kicked her in the face and delivered the RamPaige.
I continue to believe that this story is going absolutely nowhere and that Divas Championship is once again lost in oblivion but the WWE is fixed on dragging this feud on and on.
Seth Rollins/ Kane Segment
Rollins approached Kane backstage to ask him to leave “a little piece of Dean Ambrose” for him. Kane promoted HIAC by saying that neither Ambrose, nor Rollins had been in a hell in a cell match and neither of them understands what it means. He also made sure to hype up the 3 on 2 match between himself, Orton and Rollins on one side and Ambrose & Cena on the other.
Sheamus and The Usos Promo
Sheamus was talking about Main Event and Mizdow’s acting skills. And also about the US title match against the Miz at HIAC.
Although grammar is not Jimmy Usos’s strong point, he amused me by calling Sheamus, SheamUS.
The Usos & Sheamus vs. Gold and Stardust & The Miz
I just loved Goldust’s line in the prematch promo on the app: “In space no one can hear your screams but we’re on Earth and you agony will be deafening.” I don’t know, who wrote this line but it’s brilliant.
Mizdow was outside the ring, continuing to improve his acting skills. It made my day when The Miz got taken out, outside the ring by a flying Uso and then Mizdow crawled in pain right next to him, leaving Jay Uso asking “What are YOU doing?!”. There were some DAMIEN MIZDOW chants too.
The match was good but it wasn’t as great as it usually is when the Usos and The Cosmic Brothers face each other. That’s probably because the focus wasn’t on them but on the US championship feud.
Sheamus won the match by delivering a Brogue Kick to Goldust.
It was expected that The Celtic Warrior would get the pin because he had been losing too much lately.
Big Show / Mark Henry/ Rusev Segment
The bromance between Big Show and Mark Henry is growing more and more disturbing. This was an awkwardly long segment, focused on stories of their misbehavior, caused by hunger and details about their families. At some point JBL just couldn’t take it anymore and said “Just get it over with!”. I second that.
Anyway, Mark Henry finally agreed to let the Big Show deal with Rusev on his own. Then Rusev and Lana came out on the ramp to offend the giants and America.
The Russian duo didn’t say anything new but I was positively impressed by The Big Show’s response. His fired up promos against Rusev are really good.
Nicki Bella vs. Naomi
The match was short. Naomi was trying to show some of her skills in the small timeframe she was given and got some pops here and there. However, Nikki unsurprisingly won with the Rack Attack.
This match was on the card only so that the WWE can advertise the Nikki vs Brie match at HIAC. The stipulation is whoever loses has to be the other one’s bitch for a month or quit. Expect Nikki to lose.
Dean Ambrose Promo
I’ve noticed that during those backstage promos Ambrose really doesn’t care about the question he’s asked. He tends to wave off fast the topic of the match he’s about to be in and uses the majority of the time he’s given to talk about Rollins.
The Lunatic Fringe still had time to mention that judging by what Kane said in the beginning, he has acted in “one too many horror flicks”.
Dean Ambrose vs. Kane w./Seth Rollins
Ambrose was absolutely getting on the nerves of Kane and Rollins. The Lunatic Fringe managed to keep Kane at bay and have time to taunt Rollins at the same time.
However, Kane overpowered Dean and stopped his games. Ambrose was thrown on the outside and felt the steps and the barricade. Kane focused on his left arm and making him suffer. To be fair to Kane, it has to be noted that Ambrose did scream in pain at one point.
When Dean got his momentum back, he was on a roll. He delivered a top rope dropkick and a bulldog to Kane, followed by a cover. Kane kicked out and Ambrose switched to Lunatic mode, slapping himself in the face. Dean went for his signature clothesline, before which he launches himself off the ropes. But when Ambrose leaned on the ropes, Rollins pulled him out, causing a DQ.
Kane and Seth launched a 2 on 1 attack on Ambrose. Rollins was about to curb stomp Ambrose on a steel chair but Dean managed to evade him. Kane fell victim to a Lunatic with a chair in hand, while Rollins got away.
Hell in a Cell couldn’t come soon enough. Those little bits and bobs we see of Ambrose and Rollins in the same ring from time to time are nothing, compared to watching the two of them wrestle a full match uninterrupted. For once it will be Ambrose vs. Rollins truly one on one and it will be amazing.
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