Sheamus vs. Bad News Barrett
The Celtic Warrior and the former leader of Nexus have wrestled several times in the past and have continually showed great chemistry. This week was no different, as they met in the semifinals of the Intercontinental Championship tournament.
It was a rugged, tough, hard-hitting match that saw Barrett do what few have done: pin Sheamus clean in the center of the ring to advance to the finals.
Barrett has been on a roll since returning to the ring the night after WrestleMania. He has scored wins over three former World Heavyweight champions in Rey Mysterio, Sheamus and Dolph Ziggler in convincing fashion.
With every victory, the fan reaction toward him becomes louder and more impressive. If played correctly, Barrett could finally earn that sustained push that has eluded him throughout his WWE career.
A great match tonight, and an outstanding way to kick off the in-ring portion of the evening's broadcast.
The circumstances surrounding the injury angle shot to kick off this week's show, with Daniel Bryan being temporarily written off the show to head home and be with his family following the sudden and unexpected passing of his father, are truly tragic. We here at Bleacher Report would like to take this time to wish him and his family our deepest condolences.
The angle did do a great job of spotlighting Kane heading into his WWE World Heavyweight Championship match at Extreme Rules, though. The Big Red Monster destroyed Bryan with several Tombstones and was uncontrollable as he attacked his former tag team partner.
After the blunder that was Corporate Kane and the poor booking he endured in that persona, he desperately needed to be portrayed as a destructive force if anyone wanted to buy him as a threat to Bryan and the title.
It accomplished what it needed to, and suddenly Kane looks like a legitimate contender to the top prize in wrestling again.
Bray Wyatt Promo
Stop me if you've heard this one before: Bray Wyatt cut an awesome promo on Monday night.
This week, he discussed what he believes to be the mirage of free will, then turned the attention to the fact that WWE gave the fans the power to decide John Cena's fate. He said, "What a wonderful night for change, indeed! Tonight, they left the power in your hands! Those fools!"
It was a great line and foreshadowed the fan vote, which chose all three members of the Wyatt Family to compete against Cena in a 3-on-1 Handicap Match.
Just stellar work from the undisputed best talker in the business right now.
Sometimes a performer passes what some call "the eye test," in that one can know instantly that the man or woman in question will be a star.
While Alexander Rusev has tremendous potential to be the current roster's answer to Umaga thanks to his unique combination of size, speed and agility, it is his "social ambassador" Lana who has impressed the most to this point.
She shows great confidence in her mic work, carries herself with a presence that few with so little experience have and is always aware of the camera. She looks like a star, carries herself like a star and could be a substantial star for the company in the future.
Do not be surprised if five years from now she is playing a major role on WWE television, while Rusev is the midcard comedy partner of Santino Marella. Though that would be a major indictment against WWE's crack creative staff, given the talent and ability he possesses.
One of the principle owners of WWE, Stephanie McMahon was outstanding Monday night.
Everything from her completely disingenuous congratulations to Bryan and Brie Bella on their wedding to the way she may or may not have been disgusted by Kane's actions was spot-on and proved why she is without a doubt the best heel on television today.