Becky Lynch's Injury Angle Getting Stale and More WWE Fastlane 2019 Hot Takes
WWE Fastlane was an entertaining show, from top to bottom.
It says something about how talented and skilled the current roster is that a show with such measured expectations was able to outperform the way it did.
Even when the buildup and the storytelling leading up to the matches fall short, the in-ring performances can make up for it. And Sunday night, the performers delivered their all, like they each had something to prove.
Here are some hot takes on the fallout to WWE Fastlane as we enter the final stretch on the road to WrestleMania.
The Shane McMahon Heel Turn Was Done Perfectly
This was a predicted, yet welcome, change of pace. Rather than being the one to stab his partner in the back, Miz got clotheslined from behind by Shane McMahon.
Heel Shane is the path of most resistance. It's difficult to convince a crowd that someone with his in-ring history and notoriety should get booed, no matter how villainous he is.
But WWE played this angle well. By orchestrating this turn in front of Miz's father and an Ohio, hometown crowd, it gave the audience the best possible opportunity to boo Shane and mean it. And they did.
It'll be fun to see Miz work as a face for the first time in years. The promos leading up to WrestleMania, and his inevitable match against Shane at The Showcase of the Immortals, will be gold.
Sonya Deville and Mandy Rose Are Being Set Up for Greatness
It would have been easy for Asuka to bury Mandy Rose in their title match at Fastlane. But instead, WWE hedged its bets. The writers had Mandy lose because of Sonya Deville's accidental interference, which protected her in defeat. The two women then stormed out of the ring, with Sonya trying to apologize and Mandy giving her the silent treatment.
Sonya and Mandy seem right on the verge of breaking out. A one-on-one feud between the two women, or a run with the tag team titles, could be just what they need.
Bayley and Sasha Banks Are a Tag Team for the Long Haul
In a recent interview in the Mirror, Bayley singled out The Revival for praise. Apparently, Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson have been helping Sasha Banks and Bayley develop their tag team chemistry by watching lots of tape.
In their Fastlane match against Nia Jax and Tamina, it showed. The Boss 'n' Hug Connection had a few creative spots, including a double spot off the top rope. There was more ring psychology on display; the women fought to make their tags and coordinated their movements, and the heels cut the ring off beautifully. This was a bonafide tag match, rather than the typical four singles wrestlers working independently.
The tag team titles should not be the consolation prize for singles wrestlers with not enough to do. Legitimate tag team action is different from singles wrestling; it is necessary to build the women's tag team Championship's prestige to those ends. And the first title defense at WWE Fastlane was an excellent start.
The Becky Lynch Injury Angle Needs to End
Enough is enough with the Becky Lynch injury angle. The Fastlane match between Charlotte Flair and Becky was comedic for all the wrong reasons.
We're past the point where Becky needs to prove to us that she's tough. The fans already believe that she's The Man, and selling the leg is a needless complication. It only serves to deprive fans of great in-ring action, rather than us fear for Becky's safety.
WrestleMania 35 is only a month away. If Becky is so much as limping when she walks into The Showcase of the Immortals, it's going to slow down their WrestleMania moment and limit what Ronda Rousey, Charlotte and Becky are capable of delivering.
Ending with The Shield Was the Right Call
A six-man, non-title match main-evented WWE Fastlane. It's the sort of matchmaking you'd be more likely to see on a house show than on the main card of a pay-per-view.
But lo and behold, it was the right call to make. By billing this as The Shield's final match (we'll see!) WWE gave it an urgency and excitement that it wouldn't have otherwise. And the wrestlers didn't get cute with the spots or with the finish. We got all the signature Shield spots and a closing that was more to pop the crowd than to tell a larger story. There was no turn, no metadrama. And there didn't have to be.
This was one of those moments where you had to turn off your brain and just take pleasure in the fan service of it all. In this instance, narrative continuity didn't matter as much as emotion, and WWE made the right call. Roman Reigns, currently in remission, threw down with his boys one more time. And that's exactly what we needed, continuity be damned.