WWE Championship: Dean Ambrose defeated Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins to retain the WWE Championship
An action-packed main event, with a number of nods to the history of the Shield, including a Shield style powerbomb and Seth Rollins’ sneak attack chair shots. The finish came after Rollins hit Reigns with a Pedigree and a Buckle Bomb but Reigns rebounded with a Superman punch and a spear. With Rollins neutralized, Ambrose swooped in and hit Reigns with a Dirty Deeds to keep the championship on SmackDown. The SmackDown roster sans Bray Wyatt came down to the ring to celebrate the victory. An overall strong match which will likely set up a Rollins & Stephanie vs. Reigns conflict over losing the championship for the Raw brand.
Not surprisingly I suppose, the live DC crowd was solidly behind “Anyone But Roman” in this match. I was pleasantly surprised that with the presence of the commissioners and GMs of the respective brands there was not chicanery and the finish was clean. I do hope that now the draft has taken place and the rosters are set, we stray away from the Raw vs. SmackDown feuding brands and onto traditional rivalries as separate shows.
The Highlight Reel with Randy Orton
With Orton and Jericho headed to different brands, this was purely promotion for Orton-Lesnar. While I think everyone knew going in how this was going to end, with an RKO out of nowhere, it had some fun elements. Orton surprisingly referenced Lesnar’s USADA drug tests and Chris Jericho is killing it currently with his “drink it in man” shtick.
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The reason for the rise of Dean Ambrose to WWE Champion, besides being deserving in his own right of course, may have become clearer this afternoon.
WWE has just announced that the company has suspended former WWE World Champion Roman Reigns for 30 days for his first violation of the wellness policy.
I’m sure many fans immediately jump to the conclusion of steroids, painkillers, or HGH when a wellness suspension is announced because of the history of their use in wrestling. However, violations of the wellness policy run the gamut. Performance enhancing drugs, stimulants, pseudoephedrine, narcotic analgesics (morphine, codeine), benzodiazepines (Xanax, Valium), barbiturates, diuretics, muscle relaxers, sleep aids, anti-estrogens, prescription meds, illegal drugs, herbal & dietary supplements, and synthetic drugs are all on the policy’s banned list.
Reigns tweeted a statement reacting to the suspension:
Reigns’ suspension is possibly the most high-profile superstar suspended under the wellness policy since Randy Orton’s second suspension in 2012. By my count, 30 days puts Reigns out of storylines until three days before the scheduled triple threat match for the WWE World Championship at WWE Battleground on July 24th in Washington, DC.
Image Credit: WWE.com
WWE World Heavyweight Championship: Seth Rollins defeated Roman Reigns with The Pedigree
Money In The Bank Cash-In for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship: Dean Ambrose defeated Seth Rollins with Dirty Deeds
For the second time in seven months, a Money in the Bank cash-in has ended a new champion’s ever so brief reign.
Dean Ambrose cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase won earlier in the evening to become the NEW WWE World Heavyweight Champion after immediately after Seth Rollins defeated Roman Reigns in a 25+ minute match to re-capture the championship he didn’t lose. While the crowd, predictably wasn’t into a match predominately controlled by “The Guy,” both Reigns and Rollins did great here, highlighted by a bonkers Spear-turned-Pedigree spot towards the end of the match. Rollins nailed a second pedigree for the title win. Which then cued, Dean Ambrose making good on his threat to cash-in should he win the Money in the Bank contract. Ambrose, echoing the chair shot which shattered the Shield, came in hit Rollins with the briefcase from behind to signal his cash-in. One Dirty Deeds later, the Lunatic Fringe was champion.
Ambrose’s win comes a year after losing in a photo finish to Seth Rollins at last year’s Money in the Bank title match and marks all three members of the Shield holding the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, on the same night no less.
VIDEO: Ambrose’s First Interview as WWE World Champion via WWE
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Payback airs tonight on the WWE Network, and is being billed as the first major event of the “New Era.”
WWE World Heavyweight Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs. AJ Styles
The main event perhaps best epitomizes what the “New Era” may entail – establishment versus independents. Reigns has been finding his way as the official face of the company for about a month, while embracing the jeers of the WWE Universe with a slightly smug swagger. An outside observer might view Reigns as a champion grown in a sterile environment – the bloodline, professional football player, has only ever wrestled in a WWE/developmental ring. Combine this with the swoonworthy looks and the marketing department of a publicly traded company, and you have a relatively young guy (not yet 31) who can parade around on talk shows in a suit and ponytail, carrying the belt with the giant company logo.
Compare and contrast to beloved Internet darling and independent “journeyman” AJ Styles. This list of indy titles, awards, and 5-star matches he’s accumulated in a 14-year career has made him one of the most respected wrestlers alive. However, he’s a 38-year old who has gotten called “rookie” on an uncomfortably regular basis. And, there will be ~18,000 people in attendance whose emotions would range from “not that upset” to “over-the-moon ecstatic” if he finds a way to win the strap tonight.
That dichotomy is only half the bout. Lurking ringside will undoubtedly be the Gallows and Machine Gun, fresh off demolishing the Usos in a fashion not often seen since the APA vs. Public Enemy. I think it’s widely expected that some form of “Club” will result from this match – Gallows, Anderson, and AJ Styles? Or, Gallows, Anderson, and Finn Balor? Or, Gallows, Anderson… and Roman Reigns? The “New Era” will almost certainly commence with the dawning of a new super stable.
Prediction: Roman Reigns retains, and Gallows and Gun align with the Roman Empire. Continue reading →
It’s here, it’s here! WrestleMania Sunday. Time to run through the card and get you ready for the Showcase of the Immortals! In addition to this preview, be sure to listen to Big Shooter, Thomasso, & Goat give their thoughts on WrestleMania from this week’s show.
Don’t forget! WrestleMania starts at 7PM with the Kickoff Show starting up in an hour at 5PM on the WWE Network with THREE matches.
WWE World Heavyweight Championship: Triple H (C) vs. Roman Reigns
On the heels of a broken nose, parking lot, and ringside brawls, Roman Reigns finally gets Triple H in the ring, presumably, one-on-one for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship much to the chagrin of the “smark” portion of the WWE Universe in your main event of the evening in Dallas.
For months he Authority had being trying to keep Reigns from the championship, be it when Seth Rollins was champion or when the title was declared vacant. However, Reigns finally captured the gold, for longer than 5 minutes that is, on the December 14th Raw. Unfortunately for Reigns, The Authority and Mr. McMahon weren’t done messing with the Samoan Superstar. Reigns was then forced to defend his WWE Championship in the Royal Rumble Match where Triple H made his return to capture Reigns’ title. Triple H would go on to break the former champion’s nose and sideline him for several weeks. Now that Reigns has returned he’s set his sights on stalking the Game all over the arena in several intense brawls leading to tonight’s match.
Dukes – Reigns
Thom- Triple H
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