Date: February 4, 2016
Location: FedEx Forum, Memphis, Tennessee
Commentators: Mauro Ranallo, Jerry Lawler, Byron Saxton
Monday really didn’t offer us much to see this week as the main event didn’t change a lot. The big story continues to be Brock Lesnar, who isn’t likely to show up on this show. Other than that we’ve got Miz vs. AJ Styles scheduled for tonight which could be good if Miz is allowed to control for a bit. Let’s get to it.
Roman Reigns vs. Rusev
Yes again. An early Del Rio distraction sends things to the floor and Reigns is sent into the steps. Back in and Rusev drives in some ax handles to the back but he misses a charge and goes shoulder first into the post. The corner clotheslines look to set up the Superman Punch but the League comes in for the DQ at 2:59.
Ambrose runs out for the save but takes Reigns out by mistake. The League beats Ambrose down but Reigns makes the save to set up the obvious tag main event.
Post break Ambrose says he got a bit too reved up out there but Reigns is still his brother because that was an accident. Reigns will know when he comes after him.
Kalisto vs. Kevin Owens
Non-title with Ziggler on commentary so you know what’s coming. Owens stomps him down in the corner as Lawler calls Kalisto a Mexican mosquito. Kalisto kicks Owens to the floor for a flip dive but gets thrown with a release German suplex as we take a break. Back with Owens getting two off the running backsplash but Kalisto kicks him in the head to start his comeback.
The corkscrew cross body sets up the hurricanrana driver for two but Owens sends him out to the floor. That’s fine with Owens as he drops Kalisto onto the barricade. It’s time to load up the announcers’ table for a powerbomb but Owens throws Kalisto onto Ziggler instead. Dolph takes a superkick for a bonus before Owens throws Kalisto inside….where he’s rolled up to give Kalisto the pin at 8:44.
Rating: C. OH COME ON ALREADY! Yeah it’s good that Kalisto gets the win over a name like Owens, but this is the perfect place for a countout or a DQ (like for throwing Kalisto AT ANOTHER PERSON) to let the champ win but not pinning Owens AGAIN. And this is to set up Owens beating Dolph Ziggler on pay per view, even though Ziggler admitted on commentary that Owens has beaten him like fifteen times already. Such brilliant thinking WWE. I’m proud of you.
We recap MizTV from Monday with AJ Styles beating him down.
Miz interrupts JoJo to tell him that he’d never interrupt anyone. We continue the Daniel Bryan/AJ Styles comparisons which really aren’t the biggest stretches in the world.
Ryback vs. Erick Rowan
Ryback is in standard black trunks now, which make him look a bit more serious. Or like an old school Brock Lesnar. Still no Bray due to his grandfather’s health issues. Ryback starts with right hands in the corner (standard opening) before a cross body sets up even more right hands. Rowan hammers him down with forearms to the back and the head vice. That’s fine with Ryback as he pops up (Since it’s two fists on the side of his head. And it’s Erick Rowan.) and hits his middle rope dropkick. Rowan is sent into Strowman and the Meathook gives Ryback the pin at 2:59. They aren’t exactly piling up the time tonight.
Ryback bails before the post match beatdown can ensue.
Becky Lynch is talking about saving Sasha Banks when Sasha comes in and yells about making the save. Becky brings up the cheap shot at the Royal Rumble and they agree to fight together until either of them can face Charlotte. Renee is confused but neither of them seem to know what happened either.
AJ Styles vs. The Miz
Jericho is on commentary. AJ starts with a nice dropkick so Miz bails into the corner like the coward he’s supposed to be. It’s out to the floor but AJ slingshots into the forearm (that’s a new one) to take over again. AJ gets pulled face first into the apron to take over though as Lawler starts going heel against AJ as well. Back in and Miz chokes on the ropes before cranking on both arms. There’s a boot to AJ’s face and a second to AJ’s seated face.
AJ fights up and it’s a double clothesline to put both guys down as we take a break. Back with AJ’s fireman’s carry into a backbreaker getting two but Miz’s short DDT gets the same. The Styles Clash is broken up as well, only to have AJ score with the springboard forearm, followed by the Calf Crusher (better than the Calf Killer) for the submission at 11:22.
Rating: C+. As usual Miz is underrated in the ring. I know he’s not exactly the best in the world and he really didn’t need to be in the main event of Wrestlemania (though it made sense at the time), but he’s someone that you can throw out there and have him look good for a few minutes before taking a fall that does nothing to hurt his career or his heat. That’s a very valuable asset to have on the roster and he was able to give AJ a nice little rub here too.
Post match Jericho gets in the ring and says he knows AJ is good but wants to see how good he really is. Therefore, there’s going to be a rematch next week.
Roman isn’t worried about what happened earlier with Ambrose because they’re always in the same book even if they’re not on the same page.
Here’s New Day for a chat. After a quick plug for Ride Along, it’s time to brag about having some gold. It’s what separates them from the masses of title-less caterpillars. This gold isn’t like a participation trophies that Little Leaguers get for showing up. We get the NEW DAY ROCKS dance but here are the Social Outcasts for their scheduled match. There’s no Bo because he’s still recording for his gold album, which is of course gold, unlike the bronze titles. After a discussion of whether New Day are rhinos or unicorns, it’s time for a six man.
New Day vs. Social Outcasts
So the Outcasts are faces now? A brawl starts and we take a break 23 seconds in. Back with Slater dropkicking Kofi before it’s off to Rose for an uppercut. That’s about it for the Outcasts’ offense though as it’s off to Big E. for a standing splash and the Unicorn Stampede. Woods’ bottom rope tornado DDT gets two but Rose counters the flipping clothesline with a nice spinebuster.
The hot tag brings in Axel for a really solid sequence of missed shots with Kofi, capped off by a running knee to Kofi’s head. Everything breaks down and Trouble in Paradise drops Rose. Axel rolls Kofi up for two with his feet on the ropes, only to have Kofi do the same thing for the pin on Curtis at 7:30.
Rating: C-. Axel really surprised me here and looked strong in that sequence with Kingston. The Outcasts are a good choice to have an underdog push as it’s not like they’re doing anything else. Let them get some mic time and show off a bit, even if they never really go anywhere. A fluke win here and there isn’t going to hut anyone, though they certainly shouldn’t have gone over here.
Charlotte vs. Alicia Fox
Non-title. Fox throws her down to start but gets spun around in the corner and taken down with a neckbreaker. Alicia’s sunset flip out of the corner doesn’t get her anywhere and it’s off to the Figure Four Necklock for a few seconds. Back up and a double big boot puts both of them down. That’s enough for Charlotte as she chop blocks Fox and slaps on the Figure Eight for the win at 3:58.
Rating: D+. Fox is athletic but she’s the designated jobber of Team Bella. You know, because Brie Bella, who gets one win every few months, deserves to have a team named after her. I still have no idea why Charlotte had to get pinned by Brie to set this up when it could have been done by building up her character instead.
This week’s R-Truth/Goldust segment takes place at a hotel with Goldust as a bellhop. Truth’s suitcase is cracked open and Goldust admires his underwear.
Dean Ambrose/Roman Reigns vs. Alberto Del Rio/Rusev
So Del Rio’s back seems to be ok. Ambrose headlocks Rusev to start before it’s quickly off to Reigns. They slug it out with Roman getting the better of it (of course), only to charge into a swinging kick to the head for two. Del Rio comes in and slaps on a chinlock before it’s back to Rusev for a suplex. The League poses at ringside but it actually doesn’t take us to a commercial.
Instead Reigns Samoan Drops Rusev and reaches over for the tag off to Ambrose. Everything breaks down and Dean dives onto Rusev, followed by the rebound lariat. Another hot tag brings Reigns and the Superman Punch gets two on Rusev with Del Rio breaking up the cover. Dean’s suicide dive almost hits Reigns but he pulls up just in time. That earns Rusev a second Superman Punch, followed by the spear for the pin at 7:48.
Rating: C. Well that happened. As was the case on Monday, no one seems to be a real challenge for Reigns and Ambrose but at least they didn’t pin any champions here. The League continues to be a team that just floats around and does nothing interesting because they have no real feuds save for Del Rio vs. Kalisto. Nothing to see here, especially with a lack of drama between the winners.
Reigns and Ambrose are fine to end the show.
Overall Rating: C-. Another week with another nothing show that could easily be skipped. They were getting somewhere with the Reigns vs. Ambrose tease but you know that’s going to end a Raw somewhere instead of being used on a random Smackdown. It’s cool that we’re getting Styles vs. Jericho II next week but that still seems to be little more than a way to set up a pay per view match. As usual it’s watchable but nothing worth seeing.
Roman Reigns b. Rusev via DQ when the League of Nations interfered
Kalisto b. Kevin Owens – Rollup
Ryback b. Erick Rowan – Meathook
AJ Styles b. The Miz – Calf Killer
New Day b. Social Outcasts – Rollup with feet on the ropes
Charlotte b. Alicia Fox – Figure Eight
Roman Reigns/Dean Ambrose b. Rusev/Alberto Del Rio – Spear to Rusev
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