Twitter Reacts to Seth Rollins Loss, Crowd Chant, More WWE Extreme Rules ResultsJuly 16, 2018
From PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh, WWE Extreme Rules 2018 promised massive moments on the road to SummerSlam with a packed card of matches Sunday. Including two Kickoff clashes, the total card was 12 matches long, the largest since WrestleMania 34 at two hours less in length.
This gave most of the top stars in WWE a chance to shine, including Roman Reigns vs. Bobby Lashley, AJ Styles vs. Rusev, an Extreme Rules climax to the feud between Alexa Bliss and Nia Jax with Ronda Rousey watching from ringside, and Dolph Ziggler vs. Seth Rollins in a 30-minute Iron Man match.
What came out of this show was a surprising amount of backlash, with the crowd vocally frustrated with decisions and contests throughout. This was particularly surprising given WWE seemed to mostly play to the fans with some unexpected choices in the booking.
In particular, the crowd got a supposed wish granted with Roman Reigns not in the main event, only to completely ignore the actual headliner: Ziggler vs. Rollins.
Fans on Twitter had a more mixed reaction to these decisions and many others.
The Crowd Gets the Match It Wants in Main Event and Still Refuses to Accept Ziggler vs. Rollins
If you had asked fans what match they wanted to headline Extreme Rules, most would likely have said either Styles vs. Rusev or Ziggler vs. Rollins. Given the Intercontinental Championship had a bigger story around it, that was the easier choice for WWE.
Despite getting that technical showcase as the final match, though, the crowd turned on the contest, spending a significant amount of time counting down the clock rather than focusing on the action, which led to interesting reactions from fans not in attendance:
It is hard to say what the wrestlers were feeling with the crowd being so disruptive, but The Man in WWE did comment briefly on the situation after his night was finished:
The match itself also got a mixed response from the WWE Universe, both in the crowd and at home. The Showoff and The Architect fought to a 4-4 draw before some help in overtime from Drew McIntyre helped Ziggler retain.
There were a few too many falls along the way, but it is possible the crowd reaction was the driving force behind fan disappointment. The action was mostly strong, though the finish also led to some frustration with the contest:
It was an odd turn of events that defined a night of unique booking that may have led the Pittsburgh crowd to turn against a pair who were largely well-liked.
Reigns and Lashley Do Well Outside the Main Event
Many expected the main event of Extreme Rules would be Reigns vs. Lashley, so it was a surprise when the match went on fourth to last.
It was a welcome moment for many given the bout was only going to headline because it had The Big Dog in it:
Cooler heads prevailed with Reigns' recent struggles to turn the crowd to his side, but fans were still not easily swayed and were ready to throw out the contest before it even began:
That said, the contest itself was one of Reigns' best in recent memory, finally showing off the power and presence of The Dominator. The two heavyweights went to war in a physical brawl that rarely slowed in the push to the finish.
The crowd took a while to accept the contest; however, the action did its job, as generally happens when Reigns is on. The reactions were largely positive, with an acceptance that the two men made it work:
There was still room for improvement, but this match was enough to finally not feel like a waste of a spot on the card in a terrible year for The Big Dog. Moreover, it made an impact because Lashley actually pinned Reigns clean in the center of the ring, selling him as a star.
Rousey's Impact Dominates Bliss vs. Jax
In what was expected to be the final major bout between Bliss and Jax, their match quickly devolved into an interference-heavy event with the two just throwing weapons around until Mickie James got involved to uneven the odds.
Natalya was not able to take out James alone, so The Baddest Woman on the Planet got involved as well. While she was able to eliminate James for a second, the two heels still managed to take down Jax with Bliss saving her title.
The contest itself got a varied reaction with some solid spots before the chaos ensued. Bliss' lack of physicality certainly caused a stir, as she barely took a bump or physically wrestled throughout this surprisingly short match:
Rousey's interference also led to some interesting reactions. Some were again happy to see the former UFC star getting physical, while others were a little worried about her getting heavily aggressive:
While it led to an underwhelming end to a solid rivalry, this was a good way to continue the development of the Bliss-Rousey feud.
Randy Orton Puts the Finishing Touches on Shinsuke Nakamura's Cheap Victory
In a surprise move, the match between Jeff Hardy and Shinsuke Nakamura did not last long.
The Artist caught Hardy with a low blow before the bell rang, and the United States champion chose to still fight, taking a quick Kinshasa and losing his title.
While the finish was sudden, it was the aftermath that caused a stir. Randy Orton returned to action and seemed to be looking to run off the new champion before instead choosing to low blow The Daredevil.
This was a clear heel turn for Orton that may signal The Viper is finally returning to a role he was made for. The response was largely positive for this move, which may even lead to an alliance between Orton and Nakamura:
The Apex Predator has not been that exciting to watch in recent years, but he still brings fan attention to the stories he is involved in. If Orton is going to continue to work toward the U.S. title, it will certainly help that championship stay relevant.
Asuka Again Fails Thanks to James Ellsworth
Since her loss at WrestleMania 34, Asuka has gone through some tough defeats, and so many hoped her match at Extreme Rules with Carmella would finally be the chance for The Empress of Tomorrow to walk out with gold.
Instead, more shenanigans ensued to keep the Japanese away from the SmackDown Women's Championship. James Ellsworth escaped from his shark cage, forcing it to be lowered with Carmella knocking The Empress into it for the win.
The response to this mess that largely did not even function as a match was ugly, to say the least. Some went as far as to call it the worst bout of the year:
Worse yet, it was the final straw for many on Asuka's run. From dominant undefeated star to repeatedly cheated face, she has lost so much momentum. Fans lamented the change in position for The Empress:
The B-Team Pulls Off the Biggest Surprise of the Night with a Title Victory
Extreme Rules did not pull off many big surprises along the way, but the night opened with a shocker. The former Miztourage duo completed its journey to relevance after separating from The Miz by defeating Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt.
It was clear right after the finish, as Bo Dallas hit a diving neckbreaker on Matt to take the Raw Tag Team Championships, that no one was expecting this result:
The response from fans to this moment was largely positive. Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas have worked hard to get to this point with multiple odd stories. That commitment led to the duo getting major praise for this well-earned win:
On a night that was filled with weird events, it was nice to see two journeymen finally get their due even if it came at the expense of the awkwardly developed story of The Deleters of Worlds.
Kevin Owens Goes Through Another Table Thanks to Braun Strowman
The legacy of Strowman and Owens has been a series of huge bumps. This time, KO went through a table from well above the top of a steel cage thanks to the ridiculous height of The Monster Among Men.
While the match was solid enough, Owens going through that table with the big man choosing to deal damage rather than win the match is what everyone will remember from the night.
The reactions to this moment were great:
Overall, this was an odd night of wrestling that had more moments than quality matches. If nothing else, many will likely remember the odd assortment of booking decisions on this show that could make a heavy impact on SummerSlam come Aug. 19.