I took my step-son to a WWE House Show in St. Louis this last Saturday. Here are the results:
1. R-Truth over Tyler Breeze. This was a little surprising considering the push Breeze is getting in NXT and the rumor that he is being moved to the main roster, while R-Truth has been relegated to the family friendly jobber position reminiscent of talents like Scotty 2 Hotty. Personally, if I were booking for the WWE, R-Truth would have a title. Ron Killings is the total package: charismatic on the microphone, athletic, and able to put on a good performance in most match types.
2. Jimmy Uso over Heath Slater. No surprises here. Slater antagonized Uso by calling him "a commentator," inferring that the ex-tag team champion was suffering from ring rust. Slater challenged Uso to a "dance off," which sent Atticus (my step-son) into a spiral of giggles. Of course, he pulled the trad heel move and attacked Uso from behind, but Uso ended things with a really nice looking superkick. Atticus and I were both a little disappointed not to see any aerial moves from either of these agile wrestlers.
3. Neville over Heath Slater. Heath Slater promised that he would not leave St. Louis with a loss and made an open challenge for anyone to come out and face him. The Man that Gravity Forgot answered, and squashed the One Man Band in two moves, the pinning move of course being the Red Arrow. After, Slater staggered back to the ring. I was kinda hoping that he'd go for "third time's the charm" and some behemoth would lumber out, but no...
4. Rusev over Mark Henry. Summer Rae was at ringside, of course. I saw her "wrestle" at another house show, and to be brutally honest, when age catches up, she's gone. She's dull to watch, horrid to listen to, and is really only useful as eye candy. Until the WWE cuts her, I'll enjoy looking at her legs. Ahem! Match kinda rewound to Henry and Rusev's earlier feud, the crowd chanting "USA!" to rally for Henry (if Atticus hadn't been with me, I would have tried to start a Sexual Chocolate chant). Just like that previous feud, Rusev came out on top, using the Steiner Recline... I mean, Accolade... to get a tap out.
5. Ryback over Kevin Owens by DQ. I don't like that Owens has been booked to be a coward and cheater, though it has not diminished my pleasure in seeing the former Kevin Steen on television. I love the infusion of RoH, PWG, and indie talent, and hope that booking and backstage will allow some flexibility in the WWE style of wrestling for these incredible wrestlers to shine. There wasn't much here. Ryback was the big hero, and Owens earned a DQ with a blatant eye-rake. The match was for the Intercontinental title, but I can't recall anyone winning a belt at a house show since Chris Jericho at a WCW event in the late-1990s.
Intermission, followed by Bryan Saxton and JoJo throwing free t-shirts into the crowd.
6. Charlotte and Becky Lynch over Naomi and Tamina. Supersize Snuka has slowly gone downhill since adopting the half-assed Chyna bodyguard gimmick. I like her, think she's foxy, and has some solid moves, but keeping her grounded is killing her career. When was the last time she did her father's famous finisher? Small wonder she got pinned in one of the most awful matches I've seen since the Diva's revolution began. I am a bit tired of Diva tag matches. There is nothing revolutionary about tag and six-woman tag matches in a division that has no tag titles. Becky Lynch's skills are wasted being the sidekick to Charlotte, while Sasha Banks doesn't need cronies to show audiences why she is the boss.
7. New Day over the Dudleyz and Prime-Time Players in an Elimination match. Again, titles were on the line, so of course New Day was going to win. I guess sometimes the belts do change hands at house shows, but the Dusty finish occurs, where the match is restarted for some reason, or a ref negates a decision. The Prime Time Players were eliminated first, and then the Dudleyz with outside interference from Kofi Kingston, but Kofi was rewarded with a trip through a table after the match. So, the New Day team consisted of Big-E and Xavier Woods. I don't know if "the X-Man" was injured, but I am glad he is wrestling more. For my money, he's the best of the three, and based on talent alone, the most likely to hold a solo title again. The Dudleyz are fun to watch and invoke the ECW nostalgia, but if you've seen one of their matches, you have seen them all. The Prime Time Players are less predictable, and put out a great effort. Darren Young and Titus are both incredible athletes, and they had the crowd behind them up until they were eliminated.
8. Main Event: Randy Orton and Roman Reigns over Bray Wyatt and Braun Strowman. Braun Strowman looks like morbidly obese comedian Louie Anderson in the face; I can't get around that to take him seriously as "the coming apocalypse." Not a lot to talk about here. The match went as one might imagine, with hometown hero Orton getting a pin on poor, poor Bray Wyatt. Only real complaint: the firefly/cell phone effect wasn't as cool since the Scott Trade center left doors to brightly lit hallways wide open.
I might be remembering the order of matches in the middle wrong, but the results are accurate. Atticus got a bunch of WWE chain necklaces as mementos, and I snagged a golden Money in the Bank lunchbox to take to work. You want to steal my Thai peanut noodles?? Make it to the top of the ladder!