WWE Hell in a Cell
From Dallas, Texas
October 26, 2014 (Twitter @johnreport)
I did not watch the show live. I also didn't see the Kickoff Show, so here's the full review of the three hour PPV broadcast that I watched on WWE Network. I'm not going to do move for move play by play although I'll try to cover it in detail like usual.
There was a video package about the Hell in a Cell structure with shots of Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, John Cena and Randy Orton. It was great like all WWE video packages are.
There's a sold out crowd in Dallas, so that's good. The set is basically the same as the Raw and Smackdown set although there's no ramp. Blame it on budget cuts, folks.
The first match is Dolph Ziggler vs. Cesaro, so they're going to start it off with a match that could be a classic. The announce team of Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler and John Bradshaw Layfield welcomed us to the show. The Spanish announcers along with the always breakable Spanish announce table are there too.
Intercontinental Title 2/3 Falls: Dolph Ziggler vs. Cesaro
They worked a slow pace early with Cesaro grabbing a headlock. Cesaro shaved his head for this one. Usually he keeps some hair on top. They exchanged a couple of nearfalls early too. When Cesaro teased a Cesaro Swing, Ziggler fought out of it, but then Cesaro applied the Cesaro Swing. It drew a pop from the crowd as well as a two count. Ziggler grabbed an inside cradle and got the first fall after four minutes.
Winner of first fall: Dolph Ziggler
There was a 30 second rest period and Cesaro hit an uppercut for two. Cesaro dominated much of the action in the second fall. Cesaro got a double foot stomp for two. Cesaro hit a Powerbomb for two. The announcers talked about how hard it is to put Ziggler away even though he has lost a few non-title matches in the last month. Ziggler worked on the left arm of Cesaro. He did a flying headscissors into an arm submission that was impressive, but Cesaro got out of that. Ziggler applied another armbar. Cesaro had Ziggler in a cradle in his arms, then climbed up the turnbuckle and hit a superplex. Wow. That was incredible. That description doesn't do it justice. Fans chanted "this is awesome" as we hit the ten minute mark and Ziggler kicked out at two. Ziggler capitalized on a missed Cesaro charge to hit a Fameasser for two. Everybody thought that was it even though he rarely wins with that move. Cesaro caught Ziggler, tossed him up and hit a huge uppercut for a two count. That got him a win on Raw in a non-title match. Cesaro backbreaker for two. Ziggler with an arm wringer, a Superkick and a Zig Zag for the victory after 13 minutes.
Winner of second fall: Dolph Ziggler
Winner by 2 Falls to 0: Dolph Ziggler
Post match, Ziggler celebrated with the IC Title and the fans were very happy about it.
Analysis: ***1/2 That was really good as expected. Any time these two wrestle it's going to be a great match, but I was hoping for a longer match. Maybe I'm being greedy in saying that. It's just that when you have a 2/3 Falls Match it usually means the wrestlers will get more time than what we were used to seeing. Instead, they got 13 minutes. That's fine, but it would have been better if they had 18-20 minutes and got a chance to really deliver a classic. That's what WWE needs to do a better job of with the IC Title. It would be more of a showcase for the title and the champion if they got more time. That finish was good because it was emphatic. Ziggler hit three moves in succession to put Cesaro away. I expected Ziggler to win and I don't mind the 2-0 win either. It puts him over huge. Cesaro won't really be hurt by it.
There was a commercial for WWE Network, which is what I'm watching on. The announcers basically insulted the people that watched it on PPV telling them they paid too much money for it.
Replays were shown from Raw with Rollins giving Orton a Curb Stomp.
The Authority was backstage talking about things with Triple H, Stephanie McMahon and Kane having a small talk moment. Randy Orton wanted to know where Seth Rollins was. He wanted to tell Rollins to stay out of his business. Steph told him to focus on Cena. Hunter said to put himself in Rollins shoes and that Rollins attacked Orton before Orton could attack Rollins. Hunter said Orton needs to focus on beating Cena. Orton says he'll do it their way, but if they don't deal with Rollins then he will.
Analysis: More seeds planted for the Orton face turn that is coming soon.
Nikki Bella made her entrance. Thankfully no long video package for them, but they showed Nikki's heel turn at SummerSlam.
Nikki Bella vs. Brie Bella
How am I supposed to tell the difference between them? Oh right, Nikki's business investments on her chest. The loser becomes the "personal assistant" of the winner. Nikki had control early with a nice move where she slammed Brie's face into her knee and then she yelled "just give up" at her. Brie made a comeback with a Bella Buster facebuster for a two count. That's her finisher, yet Nikki kicked out of it three minutes into the match. Brie hit her running knee against the ropes. Nikki rolled to the floor to prevent further attack. Brie hit a dive outside the ring between the top/middle ropes. It didn't hit perfect, but give her credit for the effort. Nikki was grabbing her right leg. Missile dropkick by Brie got a nice two count. Nikki hit a knee to the got and Nikki stopped selling the leg injury. Nikki hit a Rack Attack for two. Brie kicked out of her finisher. Brie applied the Yes Lock, but Nikki got her foot on the rope. Brie got in close, so Nikki nailed her with another forearm shot. Nikki hit the Rack Attack again and that was enough for the pinfall after seven minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Nikki Bella
Nikki did some mock "yes" chants to taunt her sister. That means that Brie has to be the assistant of Nikki.
Analysis: *3/4 They worked hard and had some creative nearfalls in there, so that's good. It was surprising to see them kicking out of finishers in a seven minute match like that although it made it more competitive. Nikki was my pick because whenever they do these stipulations the heel usually wins. It's a way to make the babyface more sympathetic so that when they get their big win it means they overcame the odds. In other words, there will be more Bella Twins matches soon.
There was a commercial for the WWE 2K15 video game.
The Hell in a Cell Kickoff panel joined us with Renee Young, Booker T, Alex Riley and the great Paul Heyman. Booker said that in the Bella Twins match we saw the "shucky ducky quack quack moment of the night" because that's important. The crowd chanted along with Heyman as he said Brock Lesnar's name. That's always fun.
Tag Team Titles: Goldust & Stardust vs. The Usos
The Usos were in control as Cole tried to push the storyline by talking about the tweets of the competitors. The announcers don't mention non-title wins and things like that, but they sure love mentioning twitter. The Dust Brothers isolated Jimmy in their corner. Snap powerslam by Goldust got a two count. The heel champs did a lot of quick tags to keep Jimmy away from his brother. When Stardust wanted a bulldog, Jimmy shoved him away. When Goldust tagged in, Jimmy gave him a back body drop over the top to the floor. Jey received the hot tag and hit a dive over the top on Goldust. He didn't connect with it that well. He did a dive onto Stardust. That one was better. Cross body block by Jey for two. Samoan Drop for two by Jey on Goldust. Jey hit the running butt splash in the corner for another two count. Spinebuster by Goldust got a two count. When Goldust missed a back elbow, Jey hit a superkick for two. Jey hit a superplex on Goldust and Jimmy hit one on Stardust. It's a superplex kind of night. Jey hit a top rope splash on Goldust, but Stardust broke up the pin. With Jimmy running into the ring, Stardust kicked Jey in the back of the knee (the ref was trying to keep Jimmy away) and Goldust hit the Final Cut for the pinfall win after 11 minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Goldust & Stardust
Analysis: *** Any time these teams wrestle the match is going to be good because of all the matches they've had on TV as well as house shows. They followed the tag team formula perfectly and put together a finishing sequence that worked well. Heels winning by hitting a cheap move behind the referee's back is the way to go. Now it's time for WWE to work on other challengers for Goldust & Stardust because they've done this match enough and it's time to develop some other teams as tag title contenders. I'm interested in seeing what happens. It's been a predictable show so far since I've got all three matches right at the end of the first hour.
There was a commercial for WWE's work with breast cancer awareness. Byron Saxton interviewed Nikia, who was shown in the feature as a breast cancer survivor. The CEO of Susan G. Komen was there too and she said pink makes it possible. "Courage conquer cure."
Up next is John Cena vs. Randy Orton in a Hell in a Cell match. That means Rollins vs. Ambrose is going on last. Good call, WWE.
There was a video package about rivalries and how "greatness always finds greatness." There were clips of Hogan/Piper, Austin/Rock and others, even mentioning sports rivalries like Brady/Manning in the NFL. It was really good although Cena/Orton really haven't produced the kind of memorable moments to make it as epic as WWE makes it out to be.
Randy Orton entered first followed by John Cena. The winner of this match gets a future WWE Title shot at Brock Lesnar.
Hell In A Cell Match: Randy Orton vs. John Cena
Orton was aggressive early on as the action went outside the ring and he sent Cena into the cage. Orton brought a chair into the match. Cena prevented an attack as JBL mentioned 27 World Titles between these two guys. Orton hit Cena in the back with the steel chair. Orton wedged the chair between top/middle turnbuckle and then he hit a DDT on Cena. Orton smashed Cena's face against the cage. Back in the ring, Orton got some nearfalls. The crowd did the dueling "Let's Go Cena/Cena Sucks" chants. Orton posed for the fans, so Cena hit a clothesline for two. Orton regained control with a clothesline of his own. Outside the ring, Orton sent Cena into the cage. More dueling Cena chants as Orton applied a chinlock. Cena made the comeback with shoulder tackles, then the spinning suplex and Orton countered him to hit a spinning powerslam for two. Cena hit a back body drop to send Orton over the top to the floor. Cena sent Orton back first into the cage. Orton picked him up, then drove Cena groin first into the ring post. Backbreaker by Orton on the floor.
They went back into the ring for more dueling chants from the capacity crowd. With Cena on the apron, Orton hit him in the back and Cena went face first into the cage as the fans chanted "RKO" in support for Orton. Cena whipped Orton into the cage three times in a row. Cena brought a table into the ring. Orton came back with a dropkick and then tossed Cena into the wedged chair with each move earning a nearfall. Orton stacked the table in the corner. Cena hit a shoulder block. He went for another one, but Orton hit a RKO out of nowhere. Wow that was cool! Great spot right there. Orton covered for two and then he was shocked that Cena kicked out. It was great because Cena jumped into it, so it looked even better on the replay. Orton sent Cena through the table for a two count. Orton brought the steel steps into the ring. Orton took a long time to set Cena up, so Cena hit a spinning suplex onto the steps. Cena hit the Five Knuckle Shuffle as Orton was dazed. Orton slipped out of the Attitude Adjustment and hit a low blow. Great heel move. Orton set up for the Punt, but Cena moved and he applied the STF on Orton. The move was locked in for about 30 seconds when Orton got to the rope and then crawled to the floor because getting to the rope didn't cause a break in this match. They passed the 20 minute mark.
Cena picked up the steel steps and tried to throw them at Orton, but Orton moved. Back in the ring, Cena hit the Attitude Adjustment. Orton kicked out at two. Very good nearfall right there. Cena went for another Attitude Adjustment except that Orton countered it into a RKO variation and Orton covered for a two count. Great move! The crowd didn't react to it like a big thing because they probably didn't know what it was. The replay showed that it was really impressive. Cena hit the Attitude Adjustment again for a two count. Cena brought another table into the ring. Cena placed Orton on the table. He went up top for a leg drop, but Orton tripped him up on the top rope. Some fans were chanting RKO. Orton set him up for it off the top rope, but Cena held onto the ropes. Cena was on the middle ropes. He put Orton on his shoulders and gave him the Attitude Adjustment through the table. Cena covered for the pinfall win after 26 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: John Cena
When it was over, Cena did a nod to the fallen Orton and he celebrated the winner as the announcers reminded us that Cena is the #1 Contender for Brock Lesnar's WWE Title. Cena pointed at Paul Heyman, who is a part of the PPV panel. Orton didn't move for a few minutes after the match. That's some long term selling. It was never mentioned when Cena gets his title shot, but the rumor is the Royal Rumble in three months in January.
Analysis: **** That was a long match and they did a really good job of making it competitive the whole way through. Sometimes when you get 26 minutes it could be too boring, but they really built things up well. They kicked out of their biggest moves in order to have some believable nearfalls. You could tell the crowd took their time warming up to the match, but once they got into the last 10-15 minutes they had won the crowd over. This wasn't like the Royal Rumble where the crowd hated them. This crowd appreciated their work. They have a lot of haters, but give them a lot of credit for putting on a great match inside the Cell. Orton kicked out of the Attitude Adjustment twice, so it's not like he looked bad in the match. They told the story that the guy that hit their finisher in a major way was going to win and that's what happened when Cena hit the AA through the table for the win.
Big Show was in the locker room getting ready for his match. His buddy Mark Henry walked in to support him. Show said he's going to beat Rusev for everybody and his country. When he said he would beat him for Henry, Mark had a puzzled look on his face.
Analysis: The rumor is that Henry is going heel soon. That face he made is a sign that it's coming soon.
It's US Title time. During the Kickoff Show, Sheamus hit a Brogue Kick into camera as a message to Miz and Mizdow.
United States Title: Sheamus vs. The Miz (w/Damien Mizdow)
Sheamus dropped Miz groin first on the top rope, then he did the ten forearm shots to the chest and Sheamus also sold the forearm shots on the floor. Sheamus avoided a punch, which led to Miz accidentally hitting Mizdow outside the ring. Miz kicked Sheamus while he was on the apron, so Sheamus landed hard on the floor. Back in the ring, Miz was in control of the action. Sandow was mimicking a headlock outside the ring. The great Mizdow was bumping on the floor as Sheamus hit his signature knee lifts. Miz sent Sheamus over the top to the floor. Sheamus hit a rolling senton outside the ring. Back in the ring, Sheamus hit a backbreaker for two. The announcers were talking about voodoo for this match because they don't seem to understand what a stunt double is. Miz hit his backbreaker/neckbreaker combo for two. Miz DDT for two as the crowd laughed at Mizdow acting outside the ring and they chanted "Mizdow's awesome." Sheamus came back with a Powerslam. Mizdow jumped on the apron. Miz got a rollup. Sheamus rolled through, but the ref wasn't there to count. More Mizdow distraction, so Miz hit the Skull Crushing Finale for two. Miz hit a corner clothesline. Miz went to the top rope, he tried the double axehandle and Sheamus countered with the Brogue Kick for the win after nine minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Sheamus
Post match, Mizdow laid down beside Miz. Sheamus held up the arm of Miz, then sat him up and kicked him down. Mizdow mimicked everything. The crowd laughed. Sheamus picked up Miz, shook him around, put his arms in the air and did the YMCA motions with his hands. Sheamus gave Miz another Brogue Kick. Mizdow also collapsed. Sheamus left.
Analysis: ** It was an average match done for the jokes more than anything. The Mizdow gimmick is more over than Miz, so it will probably lead to Sandow turning face in the near future. Fans didn't really buy most of The Miz' offense. When he hit the Skull Crushing Finale it was a good nearfall, but Sheamus kicking out of it wasn't a surprise. The post match stuff was more fun than the actual match. I'm 5-0 in predictions after that Sheamus win.
Post match, Brie Bella was shown loading bags into a car. Nikki wondered if Brie made her dinner reservation and wanted her smoothie, so Brie gave it to her. Nikki poured the smoothie on Brie. She told her to make her smoothie the same way and bring it to her hotel room. Nikki left in the car while Brie was all sad.
Analysis: That's the follow up to the "personal assistance" angle. I guess we'll be getting skits like that for the next month.
There was a video package to set up Big Show's match against Rusev.
Rusev entered first along with the ravishing Russian Lana, who was wearing pink. They were greeted by "USA" chants. Lana did a promo saying two superpowers will collide for the supremacy of the world. Really? This will decide that? Heels lie. Lana wanted the crowd to rise for the Russian national anthem, but instead it was the entrance of the Big Show.
Big Show vs. Rusev (w/Lana)
Show was aggressive early, but Rusev chopped him down by clipping the left knee of Show. Rusev clamped on a leg submission hold for about a minute until Show broke free of it. Rusev hit a suplex on Show. Back to a leg submission by Rusev where he was basically sitting on Show's injured left leg. Show made a brief comeback, but Rusev cut him off with a dropkick. Rusev tried the Accolade. It didn't work because Show turned it into a submission where he bent Rusev back and held his legs. Never seen Show use that move before. Rusev avoided the KO Punch. Show was on fire as he sent Rusev into the turnbuckles and then hit a Spear. Mark Henry walked down the aisle to cheer on Show. Rusev fought of a Chokeslam on the first attempt, but then Show caught his foot and hit a Chokeslam. Rusev kicked out at two. Rusev rolled to the floor while Henry looked on. Show rolled Rusev back into the ring. He slowly went back in the ring as if to tell Henry he had this and Rusev nailed him with a Superkick. Henry was on the apron, so Rusev hit a Superkick on him. Rusev hit a Superkick on Show and then another one to Show. Accolade submission by Rusev. It was tough for him to apply it, but Rusev got it on him. Show tried to fight it. He couldn't. Show tapped out, so Rusev won via submission after eight minutes.
Winner by submission: Rusev
Post match, the Russian flag was above the ring. Henry tried to help his buddy Big Show. Rusev celebrated with Lana. What a lucky guy. Meanwhile, JBL mentioned that Show was just another superstar that embarrassed their country.
Analysis: *3/4 In the preview I wrote that they should have a match that is done in under ten minutes. They went about eight minutes, so they made the right call on it. Another thing I liked about it was that Show lost clean. It was a decisive win for Rusev, who had to slow Show down by hitting multiple Superkicks to stun him. They brought Mark Henry out there to potentially tease a heel turn by him, but he didn't get involved at all. It's better for Rusev to win clean. It's been a predictable show so far since I've gone 6-0 in my predictions at this point.
There was another commercial for WWE's work in fighting against breast cancer awareness.
A commercial aired for Survivor Series. That event takes place Sunday November 23 in St. Louis. I'd say go Rams, but my team sucks this year. Like usual.
Dean Ambrose did a promo backstage where he basically said he was going to destroy Seth Rollins. He told Rollins he's going to pay for his actions as they both burn in hell.
Divas Title: AJ Lee vs. Paige (w/Alicia Fox)
They worked a fast pace early on with AJ using her speed including a nice headscissors and a spin kick. When the action went outside the ring, AJ took out Alicia with a Thesz Press. Paige got a hold of AJ outside the ring and slammed her into the barricade a few times. Back inside the ring, Paige hit some headbutts. The crowd wasn't really into this match. AJ made a comeback with a swinging neckbreaker, but Paige stopped her momentum with a side kick. AJ came back with a kick to the jaw. AJ hit a nice Tornado DDT for two for barely any reaction. Paige caught AJ in her arms, skipped a bit and hit a fallaway slam. Paige was on the barricade. She was literally standing on it and AJ tripped her up. Paige nailed the floor hard. That looked like a painful bump. Alicia rolled Paige into the ring and AJ applied the Black Widow. Paige tapped out to give AJ the submission win after 7 minutes. At least that drew a mild reaction.
Winner by submission: AJ Lee
Post match, Paige slapped Alicia in the face and left the ring saying it was it her fault. Paige said "I hate you" as she walked up the aisle.
Analysis: *1/2 It was a typical average divas match that got about 7 minutes like they usually do on PPV. Is the feud over now? Not sure. I like both of them, but we've seen enough of their matches at this point. You could tell the crowd really wasn't that interested in it either. Maybe it's because of the spot on the card. Whatever the reason, it's time for something different for both of them. I got that prediction wrong. I just thought that whole "nobody on Total Divas will win the Divas Title" rule was not true and Paige is on Total Divas next year, but apparently it exists at least for now. AJ will probably feud with Nikki Bella next.
There was a commercial for a WWE Rivalries show that premieres on WWE Network following Raw on Monday. That's a great idea for a show. Looking forward to it. I'm assuming that Chavo Guerrero vs. Hornswoggle isn't on it. Just a hunch.
The Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins match gets the video package treatment, which is the right call.
Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins Pre-Match
Dean Ambrose made his entrance. He tossed chairs into the ring so it was full of chairs. He also had on a kendo stick with him that he carried on his back. Ambrose climbed to the top of the cage. He was standing at the top of the cage. Seth Rollins entered with J&J Security (Joey Mercury & Jamie Noble) at his side. Cole wondered if JBL remembers starting a Hell in a Cell match this way. JBL said no. Come on, man. Mick Foley 1998! It led to the biggest bumps in wrestling history. That was the start of the match.
Rollins told J&J to go up the cage. They each went up on opposite sides of the cage while Ambrose was up there with a kendo stick in his hands. Ambrose hit each guy with kendo stick shots. Rollins climbed up behind him and they started brawling. With J&J holding Ambrose, Rollins destroyed Ambrose with kendo stick shots to the back. Ambrose hit a suplex on Noble on top of the cage. He gave Mercury a clothesline. Rollins tried to climb down. Ambrose climbed down beside him. They were side by side on the side of the cage, right in the middle of the cage. They exchanged some punches, then did a spot where Ambrose gave Rollins a headbutt and Rollins went through the Spanish announce table while Ambrose went through the English announce table. Wow! That was impressive. It was similar to Shawn Michaels' bump from 1997 in the first HIAC match, but it's still really good. I had some friends at the event and they noted that prior to the match they took the monitors out from the announce tables so that when they did this match it would soften the blow. That's probably a legit 12-15 foot bump. The replays showed they were impressive bumps too.
There were medical personnel and EMTs that checked on them. Fans chanted "Ambrose" for it. Rollins got taken away first on a stretcher. Ambrose fought out of the stretcher and chased after Rollins on the ramp. Ambrose tossed Rollins into the side of the cage and then they went inside the cage. Ambrose closed the door. He told a ref to lock the door. Finally, the ref in the ring rang the bell.
Analysis: That was an awesome way to get things started. The bumps off the side of the cage were memorable spots that were well done. It was smart to remove the monitors. Those bumps weren't big enough to where they were going to hurt either guy, so as long as you make them as safe as possible it's okay to do that once in a while.
Hell in a Cell Match: Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins
Rollins was in pain in the ring as Ambrose yelled at Rollins saying "you stabbed me in the back you son of a bitch." Ambrose nailed Rollins with multiple chair shots. There were seven of them. Ambrose had a screwdriver but Rollins knocked it from of his hands. Ambrose hit a dropkick on Rollins while he was on the apron and Rollins went crashing into the cage. With Rollins outside the ring, Ambrose hit a dive between the top/middle ropes. Back in the ring, Rollins hit a back suplex on Ambrose onto a pile of chairs in the ring. Rollins set up a table from the side of the ring to cage. Of course Ambrose knocked down Rollins so he was across the table. Ambrose went to the turnbuckle and hit a flying elbow drop through Rollins and the table.
Ambrose was grinding Rollins' face into the cage. Kane showed up with a fire extinguisher that he sprayed in Dean's face. There was a table propped up against the side of the cage. Rollins picked up Ambrose and gave him a Powerbomb into the table against the cage. In the ring, Rollins hit a Curb Stomp. He covered for just two. That's a great nearfall. Rollins destroyed Ambrose with about five chair shots. Rollins hit a jumping kick to the head, but Ambrose came back with a clothesline after he bounced off the ropes. Ambrose nailed Rollins in the head with the MITB briefcase for two. Ambrose brought in two cinderblocks from under the ring. You could see them bounce off the mat on the floor, but it's fine to use props that aren't real. Ambrose wanted to do the Curb Stomp onto the cinderblocks. However, the lights went off and he couldn't do it.
With the lights off, somebody was talking over the arena and they were speaking in tongues. It was Bray Wyatt. There was a lamp in the ring. It blew smoke and there was a hologram image. Ambrose tried to walk close to it, but when he did he was met with a running body attack by Wyatt. The lights went off again and then Wyatt was doing his upside down pose. There was only a spotlight in the ring. Wyatt did his crab walk. Wyatt hit an uranage (one armed slam) on Ambrose. Rollins crawled over and pinned Ambrose. The match went 14 minutes. Rollins quickly left.
Analysis: ***1/2 They had a very physical brawl with a lot of big spots that the crowd really liked. I did too. Ambrose was really aggressive from the get go while Rollins only got the advantage after getting help from his friends. It's a hard match to rate because it was so wild and if you don't count the pre-match stuff then that hurts it. However, if you incorporate the pre-match bumps into it then that makes it even better. The ending angle is going to leave some fans unhappy just because they didn't deliver on a clean finish. Instead of getting some finality on the Rollins/Ambrose storyline, what we got is the start of Ambrose's next rivalry with Bray Wyatt. They can always go back to Rollins/Ambrose. For all we know maybe that's a plan for WrestleMania and they want to save their big blowoff match for that. As a match, they did a really good job. It's just that it wasn't the Match of the Year contender that some of us were expecting. I picked Ambrose to win, so I went 6-2 on my picks.
Post match, Wyatt was on his knees in the ring while Rollins left the ring. The lights were still off in the arena except for a spotlight on the competitors. Wyatt hit the Sister Abigail neckbreaker on Ambrose. Wyatt kneeled over a fallen Ambrose and laughed as the show came to a close.
Analysis: It's a new feud for two rising stars. Wyatt really needed somebody new to feud with and he's been out for over a month to recharge the batteries, so to speak. Since he'll be going against a popular guy like Ambrose, Wyatt probably won't get cheered in the feud. That's a good thing because they really need him to emerge as a top heel.
I have to admit that I'm mixed on the whole thing right now. I would have liked to see more of an end to Ambrose/Rollins instead of a Hell in a Cell 1997 remake when Kane debuted to cost Undertaker. While it is okay to tell stories that cause matches to end with interference, it's also important to give clean endings when you want people to buy WWE Network. Give those that missed it a reason to check it out. It's nothing about Bray Wyatt. I'm a huge fan of his. I just think this was a moment where they could have had a bit of finality for this Rollins/Ambrose rivalry. Instead, it's the start of something new. At least we can look forward to some awesome Ambrose/Wyatt promos. The matches will be intense too.
Five Stars of the Show
1. Dean Ambrose
2. Randy Orton
3. Seth Rollins
4. John Cena
5. (tie) Dolph Ziggler
5. (tie) Cesaro
It gets a 7 out of 10, which is the same as last month's Night of Champions although this show is going to get ranked above that one.
There will be these two feuds in the near future: Orton vs. Rollins with Orton in the face role and Ambrose vs. Wyatt. Cena is up for another WWE Title match with Brock Lesnar although that's going to be in January unless something changes.
When you have three matches that are well above average like Ziggler/Cesaro, Cena/Orton and Rollins/Ambrose then that's the kind of show that I want to watch. I would have liked to see Ziggler/Cesaro get a bit more time while Cena/Orton got less, but other than that I thought the timing of the matches was just right.
The rest of the matches were okay. Nothing was too bad. There weren't a lot of backstage skits or promos to slow things down either.
Hell in a Cell 2014 was a solid wrestling show with a big angle at the end that sets things up for a new feud in the near future. As we all know, not every show has to have a decisive finish. It's okay to have interference once in a while.
Ranking the 2014 WWE Pay-Per-Views
Here's the order with the rankings on the 1-10 scale.
WrestleMania 30 - 8.5
SummerSlam - 8
Money in the Bank - 7
Hell in a Cell - 7
Night of Champions - 7
Extreme Rules - 7
Elimination Chamber - 6.5
Payback - 6.5
Battleground - 6
Royal Rumble - 5.5
It's been a very solid year for WWE PPVs. I think WrestleMania 30 and SummerSlam were clearly the best two shows. No doubt about it.
That's all for me. The Raw Deal will be posted on Tuesday morning.
This Tuesday at 10pmET it's TJR Radio episode #52 with our guest, former WWE and TNA wrestler Matt Morgan. My co-hosts are The Ace and Justin Seagull. We'll do the show for about 90 minutes or so with Matt joining us for about an hour. We'll talk about current wrestling, what he's up to these days, there will be some discussion about the NFL because we're all big fans and we'll answer any questions that our listeners may have. If you can't listen live that TJR Radio link will work after it's over.
Check out my feature column archive that's exclusive to WhatCulture. Recent features include some urban legends about Shawn Michaels, a look at Hell in a Cell bumps we'll always remember, champions that jumped ship while they were holding the gold and more. I just topped 30 million views for the year. Go check it out now.
Have a great week.
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