Andy PG was supposed to cover me but never got around to it. I am supposing this was because of the holidays.
Michael Cole and JBL are the guys on the mics because Byron Saxton’s on vacation.
MATCH #1: Los Matadores (Diego & Fernando) (w/ El Torito) vs. Tyson Kidd (w/ Natalya) & Cesaro
Nattie’s wearing pretty much the same thing Steph wore at WrestleMania XXX and has her hair in the exact same style, so I guess she’s evil now. Don’t laugh. Creative’s actually developing a character. It’s Tyson starting out and he gets a double hip toss from the Matadors. He manages to get back to his corner and Cesaro immediately hits the Swinging Dropkick, courtesy of the double-team from Tyson Kidd. Cesaro hits an uppercut and then goes for the Cocky Pin, getting two. Tyson tags in and he’s all over which ever Matador’s in the ring right now. Kidd hits a Superkick which is converted into a German Suplex by Cesaro. It’s quick in/out tags as Cesaro and Kidd work over Matador #2, who finally retaliates with a dropkick and it’s a tag to #1. Some quick flipping and #1 hits a nice leg sweep, getting two. It’s chaos for a few seconds, but #2 gets dumped from the ring by both heels. They hit a beautiful Flipping Neckbreaker-Powerbomb combo and it’s Kidd and Cesaro picking up the win at 5:28.
WINNERS: Cesaro and Kidd
RATING: **1/2. Not too bad.
NEXT: Summer Rae, who’s as irrelevant as your local mall’s wi-fi vs. Brie Bella, who was supposed to be a face and was converted to a heel because reasons. And my readers seem to think I’m being too hard on this show.
Renee Young has New Day backstage. Big E practically compares the Dusts to the evil white man as Xavier Woods talks about E’s sweating problem. Gold and Star appear on the screen behind them. Star wears make-up similar to Axe of Demolition and they talk about beating New Day.
MATCH #2: Summer Rae vs. Brie Bella (w/ Nikki Bella)
The crowd pops for Brie Bella. I’m beyond confused here. The two grapple for about half a minute before Summer goes into a Wookie rage and flails at Brie. Brie side-steps and nearly hits the running knee but Summer bails. Brie chases but Summer knocks her back, then kicks her. She puts Brie into a clutch but Brie escapes and hits clotheslines, then misses a dropkick because Summer has no idea how to sell. Brie Mode off the ropes and that gets the win at 3:00.
WINNER: Brie Bella
RATING: *. Short and meaningless.
NEXT: Big E vs. Stardust.
MATCH #3: Big E (w/ Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods) vs. Stardust (w/ Goldust)
Does anyone care to explain how JBL adores Bo Dallas for being “positive” and hates New Day for being “positive”? (DANIELLE: Bo who?) Big E tosses Stardust around the ring a bit. Star fights back and then gets shoulderblocked hard by E. E goes for a Splash but Star rolls away. E grabs him and hits a belly to belly suplex. E rushes Star in the corner but Star just kicks him on the way in and it’s Star taking over with stomps. Headlock by Star but E breaks free courtesy of Kofi and Woods’ “positive mat-drumming”. Another headlock and E breaks free quick and hits clotheslines and a belly to belly. Warrior Splash by E and Gold gets on the mat. E nails him and Star kicks him. Star goes for the Disaster Kick but Gold is woozy and accidentally shakes the rope, trying to get up from E’s earlier clothesline. E hits the Big Ending and we’re done at 5:00.
WINNER: Big E via Big Ending
RATING: **. It’s E with different tights vs. Stardust with different tights. You’ve seen it.
NEXT: Cole wants us to go back and re-live HO-HO-Hogan for some reason.
And, so, we do. That sucks up about four minutes.
MATCH #4: Luke Harper vs. Jack Swagger
We’re either in for a 10+ minute finish with these two or this is match four of five. Swagger and Harper lock up for a bit and struggle all over the ring until Harper elbows out of a move and uppercuts Swagger. He slaps Swagger in the chest while Cole feels compelled to remark on Harper’s sweaty shirt, despite the fact that the shirt joke ship sailed a year ago. Swagger comes back with a belly to belly slam and a big boot, then hits a huge clothesline. Swagger Bomb sees Harper kicking Swagger in the face. Harper clotheslines him and sends him out of the ring and we’re actually sending this match into break.
When we comes back, Swagger escapes a headlock but Harper sends him into the buckle, head-first. Harper hits an elbow off an Irish Whip and it’s another headlock. Swagger fights out again but runs into a Harper dropkick. Swagger rolls outside, then rolls himself back in. Harper does the Gator Roll — but, fuck that. Cole is actually trying to “come to grips” with the fact that “R-Truth beat Adam Rose, who then beat up the bunny.” Swagger gets out of yet another headlock and then gets hit with yet another kick and rolls out of the ring.
Harper chases and gets tossed into the crowd barrier. Swagger takes control back inside the ring and gets a two count off a slam. Harper quickly rolls up Swagger for two, then hits a Superkick for another two count. Harper goes for the powerbomb but Harper counters. Swagger counters that counter and tries the Patriot Lock but Harper breaks and knocks Swagger down. Harper goes top rope but Swagger grabs him and hits a belly to belly. Two count. Swagger goes for the Swagger Bomb again and Harper intercepts him, hitting a belly to belly slam for two. Harper misses a clothesline and Swagger finally hits the Swagger Bomb, following a German Suplex, on the third attempt. Swagger hits the Patriot Lock but Harper grabs the ropes, then sends Swagger out of the ring. Swagger gets back into the ring and Harper hits the Clothesline From Hell to win at 13:29.
WINNER: Luke Harper
RATING: **. A “big match” that had no velocity and no suspense. You can’t wring 14 minutes from Swagger and expect us to care when you practically fed him to Rusev at the last PPV.
Harper raises his arm and walks off.
OVERALL: **. It’s not like I hate these shows but, lately, it seems like WWE is just pairing guys together and telling them to wrestle. The only bright spot was Cesaro and Kidd who look incredible.
Er, that’s it.