WWE Extreme Rules 2013: What We Learned from This Year's PPV
It truly is The Shield's WWE right now.
After all three members of the Trinity claimed gold in St. Louis, there is no reason to believe this group will get stronger and stronger.
Extreme Rules was average at best, but because of the matches involving Dean Ambrose (United States Champion) and Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins (Tag Team Champions), there is a lot of changes in store for the company in the next few weeks leading toward "Pay Back."
We have a new top contender for the World Title (Alberto Del Rio) and got to see Chris Jericho get a win over Fandango.
A year ago, I watched Extreme Rules and was left with an uneasy feeling as John Cena and Brock Lesnar tried their had at MMA-style fighting in a WWE ring. This year, I was left with an uneasy feeling again because I saw John Cena slammed through the lighting at the top of the ramp toward the ring.
Cena was injured (which is not known if this was part of the program or another miss hit by Ryback. We shall see tomorrow on Raw.
The night ended with Triple H losing in a steel cage match to Brock Lesnar. What's next for the biggest heel in the company right now?
Randy Orton proved his hometown is the place where he does some of his best work; the punt made its return by The Viper in his hometown.
Here is what we learned from this pay-per-view.
Wade Barrett Was Great in the Pre-Show
He wasn't booked in the matches on Sunday night, but Wade Barrett was still able to add his two cents when he was on the Pre-Show preview.
It looks like Barrett, the current Intercontinental Champion, has a career in broadcasting when he hangs up his boots.
I liked the panel with Barrett, Titus O'Neil and Mick Foley. All three proved to be a great combination in giving us insight into what to expect for the night ahead.
The Shield Cuts Another Great Promo
There is nothing better than hearing what The Shield has to offer. Tonight did not disappoint.
In the pre-match preview, The Shield cut another soundbite that left us chilled.
There is something great about being able to talk the talk and walk the walk. And the way the Unholy Trinity has been able, in nWo style, to talk about how they are going to beat everyone and then back it up is just tremendous.
The Miz and Cody Rhodes Have Fallen Far from Grace
Two years ago, The Miz was headlining WrestleMania. A year ago Rhodes was the Intercontinental Champion. Both have fallen from grace.
While The Miz is involved in movies and is one of the more marketable wrestlers in the WWE, Rhodes is looking for an identity in the WWE.
I like this kind of rivalry and hope it continues. Both are technically sound and should have some shelf life if the feud is built properly. If not, then it is just another "starter" match we saw and enjoyed.
While The Miz has already been at the top, it is Rhodes who needs to take the next step. Hopefully, this is the kind of match that helps him do that.
The Miz beat Rhodes with the Figure-Four, a hold his father Dusty Rhodes felt many times from Ric Flair, the man who bestowed the move upon The Miz.
Summer Rae Rocks
Just like JBL says, Summer Rae is smoking hot. And as she came out in Canary Yellow, we all forgot about the match between Fandango and Chris Jericho.
Yes, it was a pretty impressive introduction.
If he got away from the antics and the arrogance (which makes him pretty good), Fandango could be a real star in this company. I happen to still think he is highly underrated.
Jericho is still the man who has won six world titles and has helped to make Fandango's career successful so far. He also said Monday night that the fun and games are over.
The match was decent. But I also think someone like Kofi Kingston or R-Truth is a better match for Fandango.
Ambrose and Kingston Deliver
I thought this had the potential to be one of the best matches of the night.
We are quickly learning Dean Ambrose is becoming a great singles star as well. And now the new United States Champion. It is only a matter of time...
Just like JBL said, "Do you believe in The Shield, now?"
"This is The Shield's yard... they own it," he added.
It was a clean win and a good match without the need for outside interference.
Sheamus Wins in Strapping Fashion
Please do not allow this to be a return match at "Pay Back."
While Sheamus won the match, it was not one I enjoyed. This match is more of a "Four Corners" match than anything else and did not resemble anything we used to see when Dusty Rhodes, Harley Race, Bill Watts and Fritz Von Erich would compete in this match.
Hopefully we do not see it again any time soon.
Kaitlyn and AJ Were Seen and Heard from
I love seeing a cat fight, but seeing Kaitlyn and AJ in the ring would have been better.
I love the fact the two can draw from each other—especially trying to put each other down.
The fact the WWE did not have the Divas Title (or the Intercontinental Title) defended on this pay-per-view—shame on the WWE.
Ricardo Replay...Swagger Quits
Can you say CONTROVERSY. The match between Alberto Del Rio and Jack Swagger was pretty poor.
After the match was started over because a towel was thrown in the ring, Jack Swagger said the words we love to hear, "I quit!"
It wasn't the match between Tully Blanchard and Magnum T.A. years ago in the NWA. There were too many stops and stars and pauses.
Now, Del Rio will face Dolph Ziggler for the World Title.
The Shield Says, "Hell Yes"
This was the best match of the night to date. A Tornado Match showcased Daniel Bryan, although he was on the losing end.
Rollins and Reigns win tag team gold. After 245 days, Team Hell No lost the World Tag Team titles.
The trio took it to a new level and all three members have WWE gold. Now, we will see who will step up and compete with tag team. Can Team Hell No claim gold again or has their time come and gone?
Is there another tag team we have not seen yet that will come up and try to take away the titles?
Randy Orton Rocked St. Louis
It's his hometown. It was his match. It was his night. And he fed off the crowds of people who wanted to see him beat Big Show.
He did and punted the big man into next week. Sometimes a hometown hero just needs to be nasty in the ring.
In an Extreme Rules match, Orton showed he is still one of the best performers in the WWE, going to a place we have not seen him go in a long time.
Don't expect him to turn heel anytime soon. He is too valuable to this company as a face.
Ryback Takes out the Champ but Does Not Win
It is the first defense of the WWE title since he won it at WrestleMania against The Rock. The match between Ryback and Cena went back and forth—both men giving and taking.
Ryback pushes Cena through the back lighting and onto the concrete.
Cena retained the title, and Ryback's quest for the WWE Championship was thwarted.
Like JBL said, sometimes things go to far.
It looked as if Ryback was able to hold his own during the match, but the events of the evening were stopped through what looked like no fault of either wrestler.
Brock Lesnar screamed like a baby.
Triple H showed a sadistic smile. Who would have thought Paul Heyman would actually get in the ring with both of the big men?
Yes, the match was extreme. A sledgehammer was involved. All Lesnar had to do was F-5 the COO of the WWE and the rest became history.
You live by the sledgehammer; you die by the sledgehammer.
Lesnar Wins. GAME OVER.