WWE Stomping Grounds 2019 Results: Reviewing Top Highlights and Low Points

Anthony Mango@@ToeKneeManGoFeatured ColumnistJune 24, 2019

WWE Stomping Grounds 2019 Results: Reviewing Top Highlights and Low Points

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    Credit: WWE.com

    After WWE made such a fuss over Super ShowDown, Stomping Grounds became a forgotten pay-per-view with a highly problematic build.

    Tickets weren't exactly hot items for a lackluster card that was set to feature a lot of rematches in feuds that weren't enticing enough on television to make people want to see where things would go next.

    In fact, the disappointing lack of hype for Stomping Grounds gave the impression this event was doomed to be one of the worst events of the year if the talent couldn't pull off a surprise or two in the ring.

    Sometimes, though, even the seemingly disappointing pay-per-views can be something great. Now that the show has finished, how did things turn out? Which moments stood out as the best and the worst of the night?

    Presented in order of appearance, here is a breakdown of some of the highlights and low points of Stomping Grounds 2019.

Full Match Results

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    Credit: WWE.com
    • Drew Gulak defeated Akira Tozawa and Tony Nese by pinfall to win the Cruiserweight Championship.
    • Becky Lynch defeated Lacey Evans by submission to retain the Raw Women's Championship.
    • Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn defeated The New Day by pinfall.
    • Ricochet defeated Samoa Joe by pinfall to win the United States Championship.
    • Daniel Bryan and Rowan defeated Heavy Machinery by pinfall to retain the SmackDown Tag Team Championship.
    • Bayley defeated Alexa Bliss by pinfall to retain the SmackDown Women's Championship.
    • Roman Reigns defeated Drew McIntyre by pinfall.
    • Kofi Kingston defeated Dolph Ziggler by escaping the steel cage to retain the WWE Championship.
    • Seth Rollins defeated Baron Corbin by pinfall to retain the Universal Championship.

Highlight: Cruiserweight Championship Triple Threat Match

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    Credit: WWE.com

    The cruiserweight division never gets enough attention from WWE and the fans as a whole. But when competitors go out and wrestle, they nearly always deliver top-quality action.

    Such was the case with the pre-show's Triple Threat match, which actually had the crowd chanting "205! 205!"

    Tony Nese had a fire about him that has been missing lately, Akira Tozawa was true to form, and Drew Gulak showed once more why he's one of the most overlooked in-ring talents in WWE today.

    The match itself is worth checking out if you missed it, but the result itself is a reason why this was a highlight. Gulak finally captured the Cruiserweight Championship—something he's deserved for quite some time—and did so by pinning the fall guy, Tozawa.

    This will lead to a natural progression of Nese deserving a rematch, making the storyline for the next few weeks an easy and logical course of action, which is rare in WWE lately.

    And since Gulak is so entertaining to watch, the title scene will be even more interesting to follow going forward.

Highlight: Raw Women's Championship Match

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Unless the first contest was amazing, rematches are rarely worth the effort unless there is something new to spice things up, such as a stipulation or gimmick.

    Becky Lynch and Lacey Evans had none of those positives going for them ahead of this rematch, yet they managed to have a better bout than their previous one at Money in the Bank.

    There were a few questionable moments, such as when Evans missed a cue to run toward Lynch for a kick to the face, but the overall picture was rock solid.

    If they had done this well the last time, the past month would have had more momentum behind it, but if we assume this is the end of their feud, it was a good match to go out on.

    It also positions Lynch for a new challenger to step up, while Evans can work with someone like Natalya to further hone her skills.

Highlight: Big E and Xavier Woods vs. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Somehow, despite this tag team match being better suited to an episode of SmackDown Live than a pay-per-view, The New Day, Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn managed to put on a great show.

    That's a testament to how talented all four are, as the crowd could have easily checked out but instead ended up chanting "this is awesome."

    With a lot of energy and some great back-and-forth action, these two teams provided one of the most fun matches of the night, without needing any bells and whistles to make it interesting.

Highlight: Ricochet Wins United States Championship

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    Credit: WWE.com

    The idea of Samoa Joe dropping a title would be a low point usually, but knowing the United States Championship is now in the hands of Ricochet allows for it to be a happy moment.

    Ricochet is one of the most entertaining Superstars on the roster to watch, and he has the potential to go far if WWE positions him in the right way.

    You'd think someone who can reach the heights The One and Only leaps to wouldn't need a rocket strapped to him to succeed, but without support from WWE management, his ceiling would have been as a challenger and never a champion.

    With this United States title win, he now has the stamp of approval that he is worth investing in.

    Ricochet's win also symbolizes progress for NXT Superstars who come to the main roster, after many struggled previously on Raw and SmackDown.

Low Point: Tacoma Crowd's Preference for Daniel Bryan Throws off Tag Title Match

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    Credit: WWE.com

    It's great to hear a passionate crowd, but sometimes the audience can negatively influence the execution of a match.

    In this case, the fans at the Tacoma Dome were very much in favor of Daniel Bryan, as he's from Aberdeen, Washington.

    Having the home-field advantage is great for normal sports, but when Bryan and Rowan were supposed to be the heels in this match, being cheered goes against the narrative.

    "Drive a Prius" and "please recycle" chants are funny, but hearing Heavy Machinery booed every time they did what should have been something to pop the crowd reflects poorly on them.

    Thankfully, it didn't entirely ruin anything. This wasn't a mess of a segment or anything that bad. It just happened to be a scenario in which things would have gone much smoother had the audience not been cheering for the heels the whole time.

    The match itself was good, though, so here's hoping WWE looks at that and does not view the jeers for Otis and Tucker as a sign they are unable to get over with the fans.

Low Point: Drew McIntyre Suffers Another Loss to Roman Reigns

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Your mileage may vary, but in terms of personal taste, this didn't measure up to what WWE presented it as.

    That was expected, though, as the company often acts as though everything is the most important thing in the world, particularly when it comes to the Superstars being prioritized at the moment.

    For whatever reason, the people in charge think this heel Shane McMahon character is the best in the world, but this writer couldn't disagree more.

    It's counterproductive to harp on the need for change, and specifically the removal of general managers and a heel authority several months ago, just to put such immense stock into an angle that revolves around a villainous McMahon abusing his power, which we've seen constantly for 20-odd years.

    It's disappointing that Shane-O-Mac defeated The Miz (twice) and Roman Reigns all to set up The Big Dog getting his win back, but having to beat Drew McIntyre to do it—something he already did at WrestleMania 35 in a match that was rushed and underwhelming—was disheartening.

    These two Superstars could have headlined WrestleMania 36 for the Universal Championship and been a believable feud to get invested in, but WWE has already run that into the ground.

    The segment itself wasn't engaging, while McIntyre receives no benefit from this and Reigns is in no better of a position than he was before the feud started.

    McMahon's heat hasn't magnified, and something WWE treated as a huge deal could have been taken off the card without anyone losing anything in the process.

Highlight: Universal Championship Match

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    Credit: WWE.com

    A Seth Rollins vs. Baron Corbin rematch seemingly left much to be desired. The special guest referee angle was the only interesting element to it, and that could have easily been botched.

    Thankfully, that wasn't the case. Putting Lacey Evans in the role as match official was a great call that furthered her storyline with Becky Lynch and presented a unique challenge to Rollins, who couldn't beat her down with a steel chair as he had done to every other potential male referee.

    This was classic old-school booking, with Evans pulling fast counts for Corbin and slow ones for Rollins, giving The Lone Wolf leeway in count-outs and disqualifications, and nailing the champion with a low blow.

    To reiterate her status as one of the other top babyfaces in the company, Lynch's rescue attack on Evans was one of the biggest pops of the night and a great way to turn the tide for Rollins to retain the title.

    As much as WWE needs to think about changing up the formula and going with something new, this shows that some of the classic storytelling tropes are still as good as they used to be.


    Anthony Mango is the owner of the wrestling website Smark Out Moment and the host of the podcast show Smack Talk on YouTube, iTunes and Stitcher. You can follow him on Facebook and elsewhere for more.