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 411mania » Wrestling » Video Reviews

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Ring Crew Reviews: Top 50 Matches from 2013 (Part II: 42-35)
Posted by Jack Bramma on 02.04.2014



• In case, this is your first time reading, part 1 was posted yesterday: (50-43)

**** Matches.

42. Chris Jericho vs. CM Punk. WWE Payback. 07/16/2013. After losing three straight to the Rock and Undertaker, Punk took a hiatus because of crippling self-doubt. He was gone upwards of two months before Jericho called him out for a return match in Punk’s hometown of Chicago. With Punk nowhere to be found, his confidante and (former) best friend, Paul Heyman stepped up and accepted on Punk’s behalf.



• Even though Jericho is a megaface, a legend, a future HOFer, and always over. Tonight, in Chicago, he’s a glorified co-star to the “Punk returns in Chicago” pop. CMPUNKCMPUNKCMPUNK! Despite last being seen mocking the dearly departed Paul Bearer in every way imaginable and calling all of the fans assholes for months and demanding respect, Punk is instantly a face by virtue of being awesome and being in his hometown.

• CMPUNKCMPUNKCMPUNK as Cole recounts Punk’s lengthy 434 day reign, the longest in the last 25 years. Lockup takes them into the ropes for a shoving match as Cole now switches to covering the rivalry between the two going back to last year and that Jericho “needs this one” to even the score. Good stuff from Cole so far. Jericho with a go behind so Punk goes for the drop toe hold. Jericho floats into a hammerlock and suddenly he’s the most wanted man in Chicago. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Punk counters to a snapmare and we’re back to a stalemate. King: “One thing that I can’t help but think about is the fact that we saw in the previous match the long layoff by Dolph Ziggler obviously affected Dolph. Even though CM Punk’s was a self-imposed sabbatical, he’s been out of the ring for a long time.” More good stuff. Punk tries a headlock but Jericho takes him with a shoulderblock to loud boos. Punk takes him back down with a dropkick and goes back to the lying headlock. Cole switches to talk about not Punk’s ring rust, but the mental effect of the layoff, coming this close to ending UT’s undefeated streak only to come up short. Punk works an arm wringer and adds some shoulder surges as it’s a slow go to start. They chop it out and Jericho wins with forearms. He whiffs on a Stinger Splash and Punk tries a tornado DDT but Jericho shoves him off and clotheslines him out to the floor. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Be that as it may, Punk is definitely gassed a bit and the shitcan is to stall. Jericho dropkicks him into the apron and Jericho buys some more time with the ear-cup routine. Punk comes back with a Stun Gun. Back in, he heads up top for a double sledge and a quick 2 count. Punk goes back to the top wristlock as Heyman looks on as Cole speculates that Punk may not seeing quite eye-to-eye with Heyman by having to return tonight. Punk sends off Jericho for a knee to the breadbasket.

• Cover gets 1, 2, only 2. Punk goes back to the arm and even the crew is noting the slow pace. Cole: “Now, Punk wearing down Jericho. It’s a slower pace, John, that’ll help Punk because of the layoff.” JBL: “I don’t think there’s any doubt about it. It helps them get back into the groove.” King: “There is absolutely no substitute for being in that ring against an opponent. There’s no way you can simulate that. There’s nothing you can do in the gym, no working out that’s even close to this.” Cole: “Well, Jericho is in ring shape and he wants to pick the pace up.” Jericho punches his way free as the boo birds are out in full force again. Punk gets the boot up in the corner and we’ve got some major league huffing and heaving going on. Punk takes his time and slowly heads up top as the boys again talk about ring rust and conditioning. Jericho cuts him off and goes to the shoulderblocks. He avoids a shitcan and heads up top for a LIONHEART HAMMER. He fires up to boos and hits the bulldog. He wants the Lionsault but lands on his feet. Punk ducks under for the swinging neckbreaker. Cover gets 1, 2, 2 ½. Punk catches his breath and Cole tries not to completely bury him. Cole: “Although, Punk does look like he’s in tremendous condition.” JBL: “He may be Michael, he may just be a little nervous.” ANYWAY, Punk connects with the step up knee in the corner. Punk: “VINTAGE PUNK!” He wants the bulldog but Jericho shoves him off and lands the Lionsault. 1,2, no. Jericho kicks him around and elbows out of a G2S attempt.

• He wants the WoJ and rolls Punk over. IS PUNK GOING TO TAP OUT IN FRONT OF NEARLY FIFTEEN THOUSAND HOMETOWN FANS?! Punk powers his way out and goes into full mount and then side control with the Anaconda Vice. Slick. Heyman: “TAPTAPTAPTAP!” Jericho though fights and makes the ropes. Punk says it’s over and calls for the G2S. That seems a bit premature as Punk has hit like two moves and worked the arm a bit but mostly gotten beat up the whole match. Punk gets him up but Jericho blocks and tries the Walls again. Heyman gets on the apron but Punk is all STRAIGHT EDGE MEANS NO CHEATING and waves him off. Jericho temporarily takes advantage only for Punk to enzuigiri him back down for a double KO spot. Jericho lands a desperation Codebreaker for 1, 2, kickout. Jericho kicks Punk while he’s down and tells him to STAY DOWN, PUNK! The crowd fires back with CMPUNKCMPUNKCMPUNK. Punk fights back with rights and kicks and a leg lariat. Step up knee, a clothesline, and a Macho elbow later and Punk is in the groove and seems to have found his legitimate second wind. Punk wants the G2S again and HITS IT! VINTAGE PUNK! 1, 2, 2.99999999999! Crowd wants ONEMORETIME. Jericho elbows out this time to boos. Punk shoves off another Codebreaker and clotheslines Jericho to the floor. Punk follows with a suicide dive as both are down. Back in, Punk heads up top again for the patented flying clothesline but Jericho catches him on the way down with a CODEBREAKER! Heyman: “OH MY GOD!” 1, 2, NO! Crowd chants This is Awesome but quickly switches to boos as Jericho nails Punk with several MMA elbows. He wants the Walls again. NO! SMALL PACKAGE! 1, 2, 2.999! They slug it out and Punk wins and tries a rana but Jericho catches him in the WOJ! JERICHO DEEP SEATS IT! Punk punches one arm free so Jericho switches to a half crab nicely. Punk finally punches the rest of the way free and gets Jericho up. G2S! ONE MORE TIME! G2S! 1, 2, 3 and Punk wins it at 21:22.

• A very good if not great match. Expectations were through the roof and probably unfair on both guys given that they had good not great matches through an entire PPV run back in 2012 even though they had plenty of bells, whistles, and gimmicks to use which they didn’t have this time. Punk likely had a combination of ring rust and adrenaline dump coming down off the high of the pop for his entrance and it showed a bit in the first half as he noticeably needed breathers. The face/face also might have shaved just a bit of an edge off the possible dynamic in the match as Jericho never went even half heel in trying to crowd to hate him. Still, an electric atmosphere and a rousing series of cutoffs and false finishes down the stretch bring it home in style. ****

41. Sheamus vs. Daniel Bryan. WWE RAW 07/08/2013. This is going into MITB with DB fresh off making Orton tap out and proving he wasn't the weak link. These two have a rivalry going back a few years over US title matches, 18 seconds, 2 out of 3 falls, etc.

• Lockup takes them into the corner for a clean rope break. Sheamus with a headlock TO but Dragon sends him off. Sheamus destroys him with a shoulderblock and DB peels off to a neutral corner to sell. After another lockup, DB goes to the arm but Sheamus elbows his way free. DB sends him off and kips up into a LARIATO. Cover gets nothing as Sheamus emphatically kicks out. Dragon goes to the kicks but Sheamus fights him back off with forearms and knees to the chest. Sheamus chokes a bit and arm wringers DB into a takedown and then plants the knee in his face. YEAHHHHH! I don't konw where Sheamus has been hiding that but he needs to break it out more when he comes back. Dragon gets back to his feet and sends off Sheamus for a knee to the gut. DB goes to the DR FG's. Sheamus counters by fishhooking the nose like a dick and follows up with a neckbreaker for 1, 2, only 2. Sheamus sends DB off and catches him with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for 1, 2, nearfall. DB gets some room ranaing Sheamus over the top. Dragon tries a running dive but Sheamus catches him and rolls into a spinebuster into the barricade. Nice. We take a break and we're back to them slugging it out. DB gets the advantage with Euro uppercuts and kicks in the corner.

• Sheamus sends him off but he flips up and over only to get caught in the Irish Curse backbreaker. 1, 2, no. Sheamus telegraphs a backdrop so DB boots him. DB telegraphs a charge so Sheamus clubs him down in response. Sheamus charges in with a harpoon, knee lift, and a diving Euro uppercut. Cover gets 1, 2, 2 ½. Nice string of moves from Sheamus. He sends DB into the corner but DB gets the boot up. Sheamus no sells to lay him out with the Finlay Roll. He fires up for the pump kick. DB ducks and shitcans Sheamus out. TOPE SUICIDA! Back in, Dragon hits the missile dropkick. 1, 2, 2.7. DB hits the DR FG's but Sheamus ducks the enzuigiri and escapes out to the apron for the CLUBBINGBLOWBARRAGE. LARIATO follows and DB is toast. Sheamus heads up top but DB crotches him. DB tries the top rope rana but Sheamus puts the brakes on. FLYING SHOULDERBLOCK OFF THE TOP! ONE, TWO, THREEOHNOHEALMOSTGOT'IM! Sheamus wants White Noise but DB scrambles to counter. Sheamus backs him into the ropes so DB plants him into the second turnbuckle and kicks it back INTO HIS FACE! DR FG ENZUIGIRI! 1, 2, NOOOOOO! Dragon heads up for the diving headbutt but Sheamus moves and DB eats mat. Sheamus hooks the leg for 1, 2, 2.99. They slug it out from their knees. DB tries chopping him down with kicks. DB wants a crucifix but Sheamus blocks only to fall victim anyway. 1, 2, KICKOUT! YES LOCK! NO! SHEAMUS BLOCKS! TEXAS CLOVERLEAF! DB powers under into a cradle. 1, 2, 3 for DB to win it at 10:46.

• As usual, I continue to believe that other than Rollins, Dragon has the best chemistry with Sheamus on the main roster. This was a classic, face-face, nip and tuck battle the whole way with both guys constantly cutting each other off and countering damn near everything making it much more competitive and “realistic” in a certain sense with Sheamus even leaning a little heel. Another few minutes and a more decisive finish and you've got another top level MOTYC. Watching this made me miss Sheamus. I'm glad he's back. ****

• Post-match, Sheamus shakes Dragon's hand in a show of respect.

40. Money in the Bank Ladder Match for the WWE Championship: Kane vs. Rob Van Dam vs. Christian vs. Daniel Bryan vs. Randy Orton vs. Sheamus vs. CM Punk. WWE Money in the Bank. 07/14/2013. Kane was scheduled to perform but instead was co-opted by the Wyatt Family and their search for answers and buzzards.



Money in the Bank Ladder Match for the WWE Championship: Kane vs. Rob Van Dam vs. Kane vs. Christian vs. Daniel Bryan vs. Randy Orton vs. Sheamus vs. CM Punk. Surprisingly, RVD is out first, though you'd figure after all the hype and hoopla that he'd be out last. Still good reception for Mr. PPV. Awesomely, RVD pulls an old Sabu and points upward to the heavens. Cole brings up how RVD has won this match once and successfully cashed in against Cena himself. DB's entrance gets the biggest pop though with Punk and RVD being close seconds and Orton getting a sizable reaction as well. Cole credits Punk with twice winning the match and subsequently twice winning titles in the process. Star-studded line up.

• Everyone hangs back early as the crowd chants for RVD. Rob goes for his taunt but gets gang-tackled five deep in a funny spot. With RVD out of the picture, YESYESYESYESYES is the crowd favorite now. Sheamus is next in the crosshairs as he's the biggest of the group. Orton/DB and Punk/Christian pair off. Good continuity on the existing feud between Dragon and Orton. Punk and DB clear the ring TO A POP! ROH STANDOFF! RVD gets back on the apron and gets bumped off! BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Philly needs to make up their mind. Punk and DB finally slug it out with forearms and kicks with Punk winning it with chops in the corner. DB flips up and over but slips and runs into a fireman's carry. Punk wants the G2S but DB tries the No Lock instead. Sheamus interrupts the indie darling party with a ladder. He waffles a flying Christian as well only to get dropkicked by Orton. Orton goes for RVD but gets knocked down and it's time for some VINTAGE RVD! Springboard kick on Sheamus and now Punk feeds in as well for kicks. Another for DB and the monkey flip on Christian. The stepover mule kick on Orton. RVDRVDRVDRVD! ROB! VAN! DAM! Electric atmosphere. He baseball slides a ladder back into Sheamus and Punk. Christian wants the Killswitch but gets press slammed onto the ladder. Another roundhouse for DB and it's ROLLING THUNDER TIME! That's how you pop a crowd.

• Orton shitcans him out to boos only for RVD to come back in. He wants the 5SFS on the ladder but Christian waffles him to the floor. All are down now as Christian gets to his feet with a few-rung step ladder. King: “Where'd he get that ladder? Hornswoggle?” He blasts a few guys and slides back in the ring with the small ladder. JBL: “I guess the exchange rate in Canada is not so good anymore.” Christian starts to climb but Sheamus pulls him down for a Harpoon in the corner. Sheamus climbs but Christian leap frogs him. Sheamus ducks under for the Razor's Edge only for Christian to slide out. Sheamus blocks a ladder shot and forearms Christian into next week and then waffles him with the ladder. Decent sequence. Sheamus climbs again but RVD shoves it out from under him and SHEAMUS LANDS ON THE LADDER! That looked brutal and most likely produced this crazy welt on the fella's leg. He gives RVD a receipt with the Finlay Roll on the ladder. Just as it becomes a bit obvious that Punk and DB disappeared for several minutes, DB is up to brawl with Sheamus. Sheamus throws him into the barricade and props the Tommy Dreamer ladder between the announce table and apron.

• He wants a powerbomb but DB escapes to the top rope. He shoves Sheamus off for the FLYING BUSAIKU KNEE! Punk and Orton are now back in. Christian joins them as no one can get loose to climb. DB in too with another ladder. Lots of indiscriminate brawling and jockeying for position. Now, RVD and Sheamus too as all six are on the ladders. The briefcase ebbs and flows across the arena and finally all six eat it to the mat. That was cooler in theory than in execution. After the sequence with Christian, Sheamus wants yet another fire-up and goes for the Gaelic Hammers and half nelson backbreakers. He hits White Noise on Christian to crickets as he's somewhere in the bottom half of the power rankings in this match. RVD runs in and Sheamus waffles him and gives him to the FOOT TO THE FACE to boos. Poor Sheamus can't win for losing as now he's getting the short end of the crowd slugging it out with DB. Sheamus hits the clubbing blow barrage to universal and unanimous NO's! Sheamus grabs the briefcase but Punk pulls him down to save the match and the crowd from turning on them. Punk avoids a ladder waffle for a step-up knee in the corner on Sheamus.

• He rides the ladder bulldogging Sheamus in the process in an innovative spot. Orton back in to parlay with Punk over the briefcase. Orton uses the diplomacy of headbutts and a T-BONE SUPLEX ON THE LADDER! He follows up with the Apron DDT on Punk. Orton turns around into Christian Spearing him and DB as well. He climbs but RVD jabs him in the ribs with a ladder. RVD climbs up as the crowd chants for tables. Christian stomps down RVD as everyone lays around and sells. RVD and Christian now the only two up both reaching for the briefcase. The ladder tumbles over and Christian falls but RVD lands on a nearby ladder. RVD calls for the 5SFS but much like the 2002 Elimination Chamber, RVD can't so much fly out as fall down and thus gets almost no hangtime. Luckily, no one tears their trachea. RVD climbs up but Sheamus is there to meet him to boos.

• RVD wins the battle but Sheamus wins the war by tipping over the ladder. DB slides in to kick the shit out of both and ram Orton with a ladder to the breadbasket. IED ON ORTON! TOPE SUICIDE ON PUNK! DOUBLE MISSILE DROPKICK ON RVD AND SHEAMUS! He knocks everyone down with a ladder including Sheamus who bails out and eats it through the ladder he set up earlier. YESYESYESYESYESYES! BUT WAIT! CURTIS AXEL HAS COME OUT! He waffles DB to mild boos but mostly puzzled silence. Punk is up to G2S Axel to a pop. CMPUNKCMPUNKCMPUNK! MY GOODNESS, PAUL HEYMAN! He reads Axel the riot act for disobeying orders and jeopardizing Punk's chances to win this match. Crowd chants for Lesnar, but no go. Instead, Heyman slaps the apron and goads the crowd into another CM PUNK chant. Heyman: “GO, GET 'EM!” Punk slowly climbs BUT WAIT! HEYMAN TURNS ON PUNK! LADDER SHOTS TO THE FORMER WWE CHAMPION AND HIS BEST FRIEND, CM PUNK! Punk is demoralized, dejected, betrayed, and busted hardway in the process as Heyman stalks out. RVD climbs but Orton pulls him down into an RKO! Orton's left all alone and pulls the briefcase down to win his first Money in the Bank at 26:40.

• This match feels longer and yet emptier than the first. It's shiny on the outside with lots of nostalgia and starpower, but ultimately hollow. It gets marginal slack because it has lots of table-setting to deal with all the names and draws having to hit their stuff which slows the pace and clogs up the match, unlike the opener. I love the match's opening sequence with everyone gunning for RVD, then everyone trouncing Sheamus, and finally leading to the inevitable DB/Punk clash of the titans that is normally reserved for megaface collisions like Hogan/Warrior, Austin/Rock, Hogan/Rock, Cena/Orton, etc. – so it does my heart good that the same treatment was granted two ROH spot monkey, vanilla midgets as they say.

• I'd like the match more, if it didn't feel like they were several chunks of idle time like the video was buffering while the rest of the match loaded. Also, and I hate to say it, but it feels every so slightly like the Heyman heel turn might have killed the crowd a bit. It's probably more a combination of neither the favorites – DB and Punk – nor the hometown hero – RVD – taking home the gold...en opportunity at the gold and instead Orton soaking in his moment. Long-term, Orton may be the right choice, but in the short term especially in the house, Orton was a lukewarm choice and the crowd responded accordingly. ****

39t. AJ Styles vs. Austin Aries. Impact Wrestling 08/01/2013. Another entry in the BFG Series. Tenay: “Wins and losses mean EVERYTHING in the BFG Series.” Lockup takes them into the ropes for a break. AJ grabs a headlock only to get sent off but he flips over Aries and arm drags him down. AJ goes back to the headlock. Aries again sends him off and they collide with Aries trying a leapfrog but AJ running under him. Aries takes a quick breather but back in, AJ grabs an arm only for Aries to kip up and fireman’s carry AJ over. Aries goes to the arm only for AJ to headscissors him. Aries handstands out but whiffs on the dropkick. Off a go-behind, AJ tries to hook in the Calf Killer but Aries blocks and rolls through. Aries tries a Gator Roll but AJ escapes and it’s the ECW STANDOFF! Aries grinds a headlock but AJ counters to a waistlock. Aries counters back for an O'Connor Roll for 1, 2, only 2. Aries bails out for a breather but AJ tries the DROPKICK SUICIDA only for Aries to dodge and toss him into the apron. Aries flies off the top with the A DOUBLE HAMMER! Back in, Aries heads up top but AJ cuts him off with a dropkick that sends Aries to the floor. AJ follows up with a plancha to the floor. Excellent sequence. We take a break and we're back to AJ working over Aries. Aries with a head of steam but runs into a Bluechipper dropkick. AJ snapmares Aries over and kicks him to the back. AJ with a go behind into a MasterLock and then folds up Aries with a BEAST DRAGON SUPLEX. Aries is DOA and rolls his carcass to the floor. Back in, AJ goes to a chinlock. He sends off Aries into the corner but Aries gets the elbow up. Discus forearm and a burrito and Aries is cooking. He wants the brainbuster but AJ blocks. They exchange blocks before AJ gets him only for Aries to slide behind for the backslide for 1, 2, only 2. AJ backdrops Aries but he lands on the apron and neckbreaks AJ IN THE ROPES! YEAHHH!

• Aries heads up for the missile dropkick. IED time and he tries to put AJ up top but AJ blocks. One more time and AJ is kneeing Aries. A third and AJ is sandbagging him but Aries still fights him off to put AJ up top. I love fighting over the reversals. They jockey for position up top. Aries tries a superplex but AJ lands on his feet(!) and counters to a hangman's neckbreaker. Sweet callback. Cover gets 1, 2, only 2. AJ tries the springboard 450 but Aries rolls under. MMA KNEES! LAST CHANCERY! Aries works the knees and looks to reapply. NO! AJ ROLLS THROUGH TO THE CALF KILLER! Aries fights and grabs a facelock into a brainbuster. 1, 2, 2.9999. Aries now tries the 450 but AJ gets up the knees at the last second. He clotheslines Aries out to the ramp. AJ tries a springboard but Aries clips the ropes and dumps him. Aries wants a suplex but AJ counters to a gordbuster ON THE STEEL RAMP! STYLES CLASH! NO! BACKDROP TO THE FLOOR! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! That was brutal. Aries wants the ref to start the count so that he can win by countout. The ref starts but Aries fires up anyway for the suicide dive but AJ sidesteps and Aries LANDS ON THE STEEL STEPS! These two are batshit. Back in, they crawl on their hands and knees and meet mid-ring for the slug it out. Forearms and elbows from both. Aries goes to the chops and wants the ROARING ELBOW! NO! Styles lands a combo but Aries ducks under for the BACKDROP DRIVER! ROARING ELBOW! AJ no sells all of that for the Pele. Double cover gets 1, 2, Aries shoulder up, 3 for Aries to take it at 14:27. Man, I was so ready to go all in after the awesome neckbreaker call-backs and both guys taking crazy bumps on the floor and ramp, but that ending was way too clumsy. ****

39t. Austin Aries vs. AJ Styles. TNA No Surrender 2013. 09/12/2013. Though Aries won their first meeting back in August, AJ won the BFG series and thus was able to handpick his semifinal opponent and chose Aries. Lockup takes them into the ropes to dueling chants. The ref pulls them apart for a somewhat clean break. They trade wristlocks before AJ grinds one. Aries bridges up into a headlock. AJ sends him off for the usual but telegraphs a leap frog that Aries sniffs out. AJ tries to alley oop him back but Aries floats behind for a waistlock. AJ blocks and elbows out only to eat a Bluechipper dropkick. AA mounts two different corners before flying down on AJ with a GREATEST MAN WHO EVER LIVED HAMMER! Back in, he wants the missile dropkick but AJ sniffs it out in a nice callback to their first match. AJ shoves him off into the ropes for a Bluechipper dropkick of his own. AJ tries a plancha but Aries ducks under to avoid it. Another callback to the first match already. Aries wants TOPE SUICIDA but AJ blocks in a repeat from the first match this time. Back in, they exchange chops in the corner with AJ finally winning the exchange with forearms. He hoists Aries up but Aries counters with knees. He wants the brainbuster but Styles shoves him off and they counter more strikes. We take a break and are back to Aries missing a blind charge in the corner.

• Aries with a go behind and they are STILL countering brainbuster and suplex attempts. More forearms and elbows from both as they stand and strike it out. AJ blocks the ROARING ELBOW with a forearm/kick combo of his own. He goes for a spinning back fist but Aries tries the Crucifix Driver only for AJ to block in the FU neckbreaker. Cover gets 1, 2, only 2. AJ calls for the Styles Clash but Aries grabs the ropes. AJ forearms him off the apron and now flies out with the plancha and hits it this time. Back in, Aries trips up AJ going for a springboard and AJ eats it to the floor in another repeat from the first match. Aries tries to suplex him back in but AJ blocks and they fight over it. Aries fires up but runs into AJ springboarding in with the burrito. Cover gets 1, 2, 2 ½. AJ wants the Styles Clash but again Aries blocks with a rana out. Nifty. He wants the IED but Aries gets the boot up in the corner. AJ runs off the ropes but right into the IED! BRAINBUSTER! NO! They go through the neckbreaker counter out of a suplex again only for AJ to block. NO! BRAINBUSTER! 1, 2, 2.99999999. LAST CHANCERY! THAT’S MORE LIKE IT! AJ won’t tap so Aries releases to headbutt AJ down. Aries head up top but AJ cuts him off only to eat a Mongolian chop. Aries goes for the 450 but lands on his feet and rolls through. Aries tries a splash in the corner but AJ pole vaults him up to the top rope and a Pele. Super Styles Clash finishes Aries at 10:36.

• Very good callbacks and counters from both guys especially in the early going. But these matches are just begging for a full showcase at some later date. There’s a lot of cool oneupsmanship with these too through different aerial attacks and high risk moves and it’s awesome to match even if it comes off a tad like a tease. ****

38. Team Hell No & Kofi Kingston vs. The Shield. WWE RAW 05/20/2013. This is the night after EE where Ambrose defeated Kofi for the US strap and Rollins and Reigns defeated Hell No for the tag belts. Pre-match, Ambrose gets the stick and takes credit for taking out Rock, UT, Ryback, and Cena. They all go down, ONE BY ONE TO THE SWIFT ARM OF JUSTICE!

• Kofi and Ambrose to start. They trade wristlocks a few times before Kofi snapmares out. They trade flash pins for nothing and then smack it out. Kofi rolls Ambrose up for a quick 1 count and then monkey flips him over. Kofi armdrags Ambrose and slows things down to tag in DB. It's time for the kicks and a knee to the gut from DB. Knee drop gets a quick 1 count. Ambrose elbows free and tags in Rollins. Rollins rushes in only to get dropped into an elbow drop and the Mexican surfboard. DB: “I AM NOT THE WEAK LINK!” He fishhooks Rollins and drives him into the mat. More chest kicks int the corner and Kane tags in. Basement dropkick gets 1, only 1. Kane lands an uppercut and a back elbow for 1, 2, only 2. Kofi tags in with forearms. Kofi goes to a kimura and then drives a knee into the arm. Rollins elbows out and rolls over Kofi. Kofi leapfrogs with a back elbow for 1, 2, kickout. Reigns tags in and chokes away on Kofi in the corner. He distracts the ref and Ambrose has more of the same for Kofi. Reigns with a stiff shoulderblock and Kofi sells the hell out of it. Reigns goes to a Camel Clutch but Kofi elbows out and tries a baseball slide. Reigns catches him and trashes him back into the mat with a waistlock for 1, 2, 2 ½. Ambrose back in for an STF Claw hold. Ambrose smacks around Kofi and dropkicks him for another 2 count. Rollins tags in and stomps a mudhole in the corner. Kofi kicks his way free but eats a Flatliner into the turnbuckle for 1, 2, no. Rollins applies a chinlock to slow things down. Rollins slams Kofi down and then mocks the Boom taunt. Rollins: “JUSTICE, BOYS!” Kofi takes umbrage and ranas him back down. Kofi makes the tag to DB and he flips up and over for a burrito. IED and DB is fired up. DR FG kicks and Rollins ducks the first enzuigiri only to eat one coming from the other side. DB heads up top but Rollins crotches him and now it's EXTENDED SOUTHERN FORMULA!

• WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Ambrose tags in only to get gordbusted off the top and missile dropkicked by DB. 1, 2, no. YES LOCK! Ambrose makes the ropes and now it's a donnybrook. We take a break and are back to Kane working on Reigns. Kofi back in for a sledge off the top. Reigns no sells to forearm him back to jobber Earth. Ambrose tags in to rack the eyes on the top rope. Kofi comes back with the mounted 10 in the corner and a Euro uppercut. DB back in and he hooks Ambrose in the Tree of Woe for an IED to the face. 1, only 1 count. Sheamus, is that you? DB gets sent off but Rollins waffles him from behind and tags in for the BuckleBomb. OOOOOOOOOOO! 1, 2, NO! Rollins mounts for the GnP. Reigns tags in and he nearly decapitates DB with a short arm clothesline. Reigns: “I GOT EVERYTHING YOU WANT, HUH?!” Rollins: “YOU ARE THE WEAK LINK! HOW WEAK CAN YOU BE?!” DB elbows out only to get knee lifted into the rafters for 1, 2, 2.7. Ambrose in with several boots to the lower abdomen for 1, 2, kickout.

• High angle back suplex for another nearfall. Ambrose locks in the Stranglehold Gamma mostly to work on the fingers. DB goes to the headbutts but gets kneed again to cut him off. Rollins tags in again to talk trash and bring in Ambrose. Ambrose piefaces DB down but Dragon lands a desperation enzuigiri. Tag to Reigns to cut off DB but he gets kicked off and TAG TO KANE! HE'S A HOUSE OF RED PYRO! BULLDOG POWERSLAM! Clotheslines all around and a side slam for 1, 2, broken up by Ambrose. Kofi in with another sledge on Ambrose and he dumps him out. Kofi and DB follow out with stereo dives on Ambrose and Rollins. In the ring, Reigns telegraphs a backdrop and Kane DDTS him for 1, 2, 2.99999. Ambrose with a snap suplex on DB and Rollins posts Kofi. Kane hits the FOOT TO THE FACE on Reigns and uppercuts a flying in Ambrose. GOOZLE! Rollins breaks it up with a flying knee. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! SPEARSPEARSPEAR! Reigns hooks the leg for 1, 2, 3 to take it for the Shield at 19:54.

• Excellent extended southern formula match but missing just a tad of zest to be anything more – kicked out of finishers, finisher counters, convincing false finishes, etc. Good heat segment by Shield and good selling make a good match. ****

37. Gauntlet Match: Daniel Bryan vs. Jack Swagger, Antonio Cesaro & Ryback. WWE RAW 07/22/2013. Cena hand-picked Dragon as his SS opponent but GM Brad Maddox didn't think he had earned it. Hence, Maddox booking DB against We the People and Ryback. Pre-match, Zeb gets the stick and says that tonight, they are in the heart of Texas – Austin to be precise, named after the patriot, Stephen Austin. If he were alive today, Zeb would encourage him to go on the Maury Povich Show and find out that he's no longer the father of these troglodytes who chant stupid phrases like YESYESYESYES! SHAME ON YOU!

• Swagger starts first and yells a lot but gets punched back out of the corner. Swagger blocks a kick but Dragon rolls him up for 1, 2, only 2. Swagger cuts him off with a chop block. WE... THE PEOPLE! Swagger blows through him with a shoulderblock and stomps him around. Into the corner for some knees to DB's gut. Swagger with a suplex as the UT fans chant that OUSUCKSOUSUCKS. Dragon comes back with a Bluechipper dropkick. Swagger bails out but still blocks the suicide dive with a forearm. Swagger takes a breather to mouth off to the Longhorn fans. HOOK 'EM HORNS DOWN! BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! WE.... THE PEOPLE! That's the biggest heat of Swagger's career. Unfortunately, Dragon grabs his arm and pulls him into the Yes Lock in academic fashion and Swagger's gone at 2:58. Entertaining while it lasted. *

• Cesaro up next but we take a break first. We're back to Cesaro working a top wristlock. During the break, Cesaro hit the SWISS DEATH FROM BELOW! DB takes over in the corner with kicks but Cesaro counters and whips him hard into the turnbuckle for the Bret Hart bump. Cesaro applies a chinlock called the “Liddell Device” or something by Cole. DB escapes out with a DSLW and another. One more and it's Mexican Surfboard time. He fishhooks Cesaro back and then stomps the hamstrings into the mat. They fight over a suplex and Cesaro BEASTS him up for a deadlift suplex. WE... THE PEOPLE! Elbow drop gets 1, 2, only 2. Cesaro goes back to the chinlock. DB tries to elbow out but Cesaro pulls the tights and drags DB back down. DB elbows out this time and flips up and over into the burrito. He's fired up and goes to the DR FG's. Cesaro ducks the DR FG enzuigiri. BACK TO THE CHINLOCK! YEAHHHH! DB has to back him into TWO corners to fight out for the IED's. Cover gets 1, 2, only 2. DB heads up top. BUT WAIT! SWAGGER PUSHES HIM OFF INTO THE SWISS DEATH FROM BELOW! Cesaro covers for 1, 2, kickout. YESYESYESYESYES! We take a break and Dragon tries a sunset flip for 1, 2, no. Cesaro flattens him with a double foot stomp. Cesaro hits the Karelin lift for 1, 2, nearfall. Cesaro piefaces and paintbrushes Dragon so he comes back with headbutts. King: “THE GOATBUTT!” Thanks for that.

• ANYWAY, DB fires up for rights but Cesaro counters to an inverted FU. 1, 2, no. Cesaro tunes up the band but runs into a boot in the corner. RELEASE GERMAN FROM DRAGON! DR FG ENZUIGIRI! 1, 2, 2.999999999999. DB heads up top but Cesaro crotches him and follows up with a leaping Euro uppercut. NICE! Cesaro wants a hanging vertical suplex off the second turnbuckle but DB fights him off. Cesaro regroups only to get crotched. DB pulls him down into a Tree of Woe and the delayed IED to the face. DB brings him up top for a super back suplex. NO! CESARO FLOATS INTO A CROSSBODY! 1, 2, NO! Double KO spot. They exchange Euro uppercuts and then Cesaro fuckin' DESTROYS him with about twenty straight. SHORT ARM LARIATO FROM HELL! 1, 2, 2.9999999999999999999999999999999999! Even Finlay flinched after that exchange. Cesaro calls for the Neutralizer but Dragon counters to a backdrop. They slug it out with more uppercuts and forearms. Dragon clips the knee for the Indian Deathlock into a mount with STIFFFFFFFF forearms. YESYESYESYES! DB shitcans out Cesaro for a suicide dive on both members of WTP. Back in, DB leaps over a charging Cesaro. Cesaro alley oops Dragon but he lands into a SMALL PACKAGE! 1, 2, 3 for Dragon at 13:40 (17:09 total). Give these two 30 minutes on PPV and the rest of the card won't have a chance unless it's Punk/Cena. That Euro uppercut trading sequence was some of the best, most intense stuff all year. ***3/4

• After one more break, the final opponent is announced and it's Ryback, of course, when he was still kinda relevant, but not much. DB smothers him early with kicks to the hamstrings and Cole brings up Ryback “history of recent leg problems” including quitting against Miz due to a charliehorse. The ref calls for a break and Ryback pounds him down and chokes in the interim. C'MONBRYAN! Dragon fights back with forearms but eats a SAVATE KICK! OOOOOOOOOOO! Ryback chokes and interrupts the ref's count with “I HAVE TIL '5!” THAT'S GIMMICK INFRINGEMENT, YOU SONOFABITCH! Ryback: “YOU ARE A LITTLE MAN IN A BIG MAN'S WORLD!” Ryback hairtosses him across the ring and stomps a mudhole to crickets. DB is DONE. Ryback: “YESYESYESYESYESYES!” Ryback whips him across and lands a suplex for 1, 2, kickout. Ryback goes to the chinlock as the crowd is dead after that awesome Cesaro segment. DB elbows out but runs into a Thesz press that Dragon counters into a ROLLING CANADIAN MAPLELEAF!

• Ryback struggles but makes the ropes. JBL: “Ryback almost had athlete's foot in his ears.” Ryback chokes him a bit and hits a splash for 1, 2, no. Spinebuster and Ryback wants the Meathook. DB counters with the Busaiku knee and some IED's. Ryback cuts him off on the third with the Meathook for 1, 2, 2 ½. Ryback sets up a table but eats a suicide dive from a flying DB. Ryback sells it into the announce table in a cool spot. Ryback comes back by sending him into the steps. Back in, DB cuts him off at the pass with the DR FG's. He wants the enzuigiri but Ryback picks him up for a powerbomb. DB counters into a roll up for 1, 2, no. YES LOCK! NO! Ryback slings him across the ring by the hair. DB drops down and pulls him into the turnbuckle. He heads up for the missile dropkick. 1, 2, 2.99999999999999. Yes Lock applied. Ryback scratches and claws and makes the ropes. Ryback bails out to the floor, so Dragon follows for a flying knee off the apron. Ryback blocks and spins into a POWERBOMB! He hoists up DB ONE MORE TIME for the powerbomb through the table. Dragon by DQ at 9:15 (28:21 total). Fine but nothing on that Cesaro segment. ** and **** for the whole thing but mainly as a DB vehicle.

• Post-match, Ryback moves in for the kill. BUT WAIT! JOHN CENA HAS COME OUT! He clears the ring and then challenges Ryback to a tables match for next week. PLAY CENA'S MUSIC! Who does Cena think he is after that thievery? Hogan?

36. World Heavyweight Championship: Christian vs. Alberto Del Rio (c). WWE Summerslam. 08/18/2013. After almost a year layoff, Christian returned earlier this year to help the Usos hand The Shield their second ever loss. He came up short at MITB in the star-studded WWE Championship MITB ladder match. Christian capitalized though by defeating ADR clean on RAW and then following up by beating Orton and RVD in a number 1 contender's match on Smackdown. Del Rio, on the other hand, beat Ziggler three straight times with each loss fishier and fishier but it was enough to stay world champ. ADR is sporting a fresh shiner after getting into a bar brawl with Drew McIntyre against some locals in a handicap match, but Cole and crew are playing it as damage from Christian's latest Killswitch.



• Del Rio stops Lilian at the intros and demands a Spanish introduction. Lock up takes them into a rope break. ADR goes to the leg early and then headbutts Christian down. JBL brings up how Christian's first WHW title reign was defeating none other than Del Rio in an awesome ladder match. Del Rio grabs a headlock and Christian tries to send him off but ADR hangs on. After a few stalled attempts, Christian escapes only to get taken down by a shoulderblock. ADR then poses with the CHONG LI PECS FLEX! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Christian uppercuts him casually and then dumps him out. Christian telegraphs a baseball slide so ADR tries to cut him off at the pass. Christian sniffs that out and snaps him over the top rope nicely. Christian tries to come off top but ADR stops short to break up the momentum. Christian comes back trying a rana but ADR ducks under to crotch him for a STEP UP ENZUIGIRI! SWEEEEEEEET! SISISISISISISISI! This is awesome and only two minutes in. ADR punts him to the skull one more time and Christian rolls to the floor. King: “Del Rio has made the decision that rules are like pinatas: made to be broken.” ADR then hammerlocks Christian and sends him into the barricade SURGICALLYREPAIREDSHOULDER first! Back in, ADR covers for 1, 2, only 2. ADR grabs a resthold so Christian elbows out. He gathers a head of steam but runs into a flapjack and a basement dropkick. King: “THAT'LL SHAKE YOUR MARACAS!” Del Rio then wraps the arm around the ropes as JBL speculates that this will eliminate the Spear from Christian's arsenal tonight. JBL comes off the top with a double foot stomp. Cover gets 1, 2, no. Del Rio dropkicks the arm into the ropes and torques it over the ropes again. Del Rio goes for a Bossman attack but Christian moves and ADR whiffs and eats it to the floor. Christian flies out with a plancha.

• Back in, they slug it out until ADR goes BACK TO THE ARM! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! ADR poses to big heat and stomps a mudhole. ADR wipes the hardway blood away from his nose and then smacks the taste out of Christian's mouth for his insolence in the face of a Mexican-American hero. ADR flies off the top but Christian gets the boot up. Christian fires up for a missile dropkick. Christian mounts in the corner for 10 and ducks a charging in ADR trying another step up enzuigiri. Christian crossbodies Del Rio for 1, 2, 2 ½. ADR has had enough and begs off. Christian will have none of it but he will have some of the headbutt. Christian lands on his feet out of a suplex and tries the Killswitch. ADR kicks him off and counters another crossbody with the BACKCRACKER! Rapid fire counters in there. 1, 2, 2.7. Del Rio wants the armbar but Christian rolls him up for 1, 2, no. Christian retreats into the corner only to eat another step up enzuigiri. These two are on fire tonight. ADR has HAD IT with the nearfalls so he just blatantly fishhooks Christian to be a dick. ADR goes for a flying senton but Christian moves and catches his second wind. He comes off the top with a super Euro uppercut. He wants the Killswitch but again ADR scouts it and drives him into the corner. Christian tries to sunset flip his way into an MDK bomb but Del Rio puts the brakes on. Christian retaliates with a dropkick and a top rope rana. 1, 2, kickout. Cole: “Christian's like a gnat, he just keeps coming at ya.” JBL: “I don't know if a gnat has ever won a world championship.” Christian wants the Spear but ADR counters with a DROPKICK TO THE FACE! 1, 2, KICKOUT! SISISISISISISISI! ARMBAR TIME! Christian shoves him off and into the ropes for the anticlimatic uppercut on the floor. Christian slides back in to eat a superkick. 1, 2, 2.99. THIS IS AWESOME says the crowd. ADR drops the kickpad for the Sweet Shin Music but Christian ducks. ROLL UP! 1, 2, 2.99999! SPEAR! BUT THE HURT SHOULDER! ARMBAR! CHRISTIAN CAN'T MAKE THE ROPES AND TAPS AT 12:33!

• Awesome performance from both guys with ADR showing a new vicious streak in his repertoire since taking the strap from Ziggler and Christian effortlessly sliding into the old X-Pac role and more recent Jericho role of vet that EVERYONE should be able to have a good match with. Seriously, if a guy can't have a good match with Christian at this point, he should retire and go back to personal training or bouncing or retail management. That being said, I'll continue to drive the ADR bandwagon and invite everyone aboard. He went from heel to face back to heel within 6 months but has evolved as a character and a worker in the time being to be even better. This year, for WWE guys with the most ***-****+ matches, I'd put ADR behind Daniel Bryan and The Shield as a unit. ****

• Post-match, ADR gets the stick and says that tonight is a great night because he is still YOUR champion and he's representing all the latinos. The Mexican people need him as their hero because he knows that everything will be all right. JBL: “What a great role model.”

35. John Cena, Goldust, & Cody Rhodes vs. Damien Sandow & The Real Americans. RAW 11/04/2013. After HITC, the Fed went for a reboot. The Rhodes followed up a barnburner series with The Shield by taking a clean pinfall loss to WTP. Fresh off becoming world champ, Cena welcomed all challengers and Sandow unmerciful beat him down targeting the SURGICALLREPAIRED tricep and cashed in. Unfortunately, Sandow didn't realize that Cena was not only rebuilt but because James Andrews had the technology, he was rebuilt better than before – better, stronger, and faster. Surprisingly, Sandow wasn't punted back to the midcard in an OVW crate, but instead actually is getting a mini-program out of the whole thing and looked like he might stretch it into a triple threat at Survivor Series but that didn't pan out as Cena again dispatched Del Rio handily.

• Pre-match, Renee Young is in the back with Sandow. Sandow bitterly recounts that after losing everything, he had to have a reality check and looked in the mirror. Sandow says he didn't see an intellectual savor, but instead, he saw a man that would do anything to win the world strap including team with some Real Americans. Zeb and the boys enter stage right and talk some smack to “Raylene.” Zeb says this will be their second time defeating the tag champs and will show how quickly they are becoming the dominant tag team in the WWE. WETHEPEOPLE! Sandow counters with ME, YOUR UNCROWNED WORLD CHAMPION!

• Zeb and ADR are joining the boys on commentary. That's 3 heels on commentary and Cole and King to stave them off. I'm not liking their chances.

• Sandow and Cena to start. Sandow boots him down to start but Cena comes back with rights and a bulldog. Cena covers for a fleeting 1 count. Cody tags in for the double elbow with Cena. Cover gets another quick 1 count. Awesomely, these two have recent history as well to give this match even more meaning. Sandow tries a blind charge but Cody flips up and over for the Jack Brisco roll up for another nearfall. Sandow takes over and tags in Swagger as ADR badmouths Cena (“THAT PERRO! THAT GRINGO!”) on commentary. Cole tries to give him some lip but ADR sets him straight: “... SHUT UP, MICHAEL COLE!” Cody tags in Goldust as well for a nice combo dropkick for a 1 count. After a blocked hiptoss and a ducked punch, Goldust snapmares Swagger over for a kneedrop. Cover gets 1, 2, only 2. Cody back in for the DR FG and again a quick cover. Swagger escapes to tag in Cesaro. Cody shrugs off a shot to tag in Cena. Cena calls off the dogs and wants Cesaro, mano y mano. JOHN CENA IS CALLING OUT CESARO! He wants him in the middle of the ring. They lock up and Cesaro THROWS CENA BACK INTO THE CORNER! FUCK YEAH! *****! Whoops, sorry. Still, that was awesome. I loved that Cena called out Cesaro because in his time off, he's heard about the Cesaro Swing and the “pound-for-pound strongest man in the WWE” as JBL would say, and in their first lock up, Cesaro GETS THE ADVANTAGE! There's absolutely zero reason for that other than to protect Cesaro's gimmick and it's just a beautiful small touch.

• ANYWAY, Cesaro is fired up and tells Cena to bring it. Cena comes back out and throws down Cesaro. OOOOOOO, IT'S GO TIME! Dueling Cena chants as they go to the vaunted TEST OF STRENGTH! Cesaro drops Cena to a knee, but Cena comes back only for Cesaro to boot him to the breadbasket. Euro uppercut and another and Cena is staggered. He comes back with a snap suplex for only a 1 count. Cena tags in Goldust for a double suplex. Cover gets 1, 2, only 2. Goldust drops Cesaro with another uppercut and tags in Cody. Front suplex gets 1, 2, 2 ½. Zeb and ADR continue bickering for a while. Cole: “You guys are worse than Congress out there.” King: “You guys couldn't warm up to each other if you were cremated together, amirite?” Cesaro completely trashes Cody with some Euro uppercuts and then tags in Sandow for shoulder surges. Cody counters with a whip and a backdrop. JBL: “Alberto, what do you think about Damien Sandow calling himself the 'Uncrowned World Champ'?” ADR: “He doesn't know what he's saying... he's just....” King: “He's a gringo.” ADR: “He's... a gringo. Exactly. [Laughs]” JBL: “Is he also a perro?” ADR: “With his blue eyes and pale skin, he's just... he's going loco and has no idea what's going on.” Sandow slides out of an FU and bails out for a breather. Sandow: “IT'S NOT THAT EASY!” We take a break and are back to another Test of Strength from Cesaro and Cena and again Cesaro is winning. Cena punches his way free but runs into the SWISS DEATH FROM BELOW! ONE, TWO, THREEOHNOHEALMOSTGOT'IM!

• Swagger in for a WTP double suplex. Swagger hits the SwaggerBomb for 1, 2, nearfall. Sandow back in as Zeb Colter claims he would smack Cena if he could get his hands on him. Cena fights off Sandow with that slick half-nelson neckbreaker he's been using since he came back. Cena crawls for the tag but Swagger tags in to cut off Cena's hope spot. Cole: “My wife calls me a gringo all the time.” ADR: “Because, perro, that's what you are: a gringo.” Swagger swarms Cena with a hard knee to the midsection and a front facelock. Cena powers out with a backdrop but is too out of it. Swagger back on him with the Patriot Act. Cena rolls through and Swagger nicely puts the brakes on before running into the tag champs corner. Swagger instead tackles Cena with a LARIATO! Cesaro in for 1, 2, 2 ½. Cesaro piefaces Cena to wake him up. C'MONJOHN! Cesaro: “WHO IS YOUR CHAMPION, NOW?!” Cesaro with another Euro uppercut and another and Zeb wants the match stopped. Cena gets his second wind for the hurricanrana. Cena tries the hot tag but Sandow tags in and immediately goes to the SURGICALLYREPAIREDTRICEPS! Sandow grinds a top wristlock. Cena tries to fire up but Sandow flattens him with the Edge-o-matic(!). Cover gets 1, 2, 2.99 as Cena escapes barely with the good arm only. Sandow lands a clothesline as ADR chastises Cena in Spanish. Cole: “....John?” JBL: “He just said he's going to rip the arm off that perros gringos.” Sandow tunes up the band but Cena floats over Maivia-Hurricane style for the CENA HURRICANE BOMB! HOT TAG TO GOLDUST!

• He rolls through Cesaro with clothesline and the uppercut. Atomic drop and Batista kick and Goldust mounts in the corner. Swagger tries to sneak him so Goldust dumps him. Cesaro tries to take over but eats a back elbow. Crossbody gets 1, 2, no as Sandow breaks it up. MISSILE DROPKICK FROM CODY! BEAUTIFUL DISASTER ON SWAGGER! FU ON SWAGGER! BUT WAIT! SANDOW SNEAKS CENA AND LANDS THE FULL NELSON SLAM! Cody and Sandow brawl to the floor. Cesaro is alone in the ring with Goldust and the... CESARO SWING! Awesomely, JBL and Zeb count along in Spanish until they get to 15 and stop because they don't know anymore. Cesaro runs out of steam after 17 rotations. King: “STOPPO!” JBL: “SWING AROUND THAT PAINTED UP, GRINGO!” Goldust crawls out to the floor to sell. Cesaro tries to pounce but Cena sends him into Zeb in a cool spot. JBL: “THERE'S A WAR VETERAN UNDER THERE!” Back in, Goldust plants off Swagger for the Stratusfaction on Cesaro. 1, 2, Sandow breaks it up. MOONSAULT ON SANDOW FROM CODY! CROSSBODY FROM CENA! Goldust hits the sweet Final Cut on Cesaro. Cover gets 1, 2, 3 to finish the heels at 16:08 of aired footage.

• I love this match, especially because it's further evidence how giving Cena has been since coming back from injury. He can't help the booking of going over ADR or going over Sandow. But it can't be denied that he's come back to work. He's breaking out new moves that are legitimately awesome, even if not the most crisply executed. He sold, he took the heat, he let Cesaro throw him back into the corner, he gave Goldust the hot tag, and Goldust picked up the win. This is the kind of tag wrestling display the WWE has had the capability of putting on for years now, but only seemed interested the last year and only when it was some combination of The Shield and Hell No. Finally, they have an honest to God tag division – WTP, PTP, Shield, Family, Matadores, 3MB, Rhodes, Usos, etc. FEED ME MORE! ****


The 411: *10.0 is a default rating for the best of the year.
411 Elite Award
Final Score:  10.0   [ Virtually Perfect ]  legend





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