WWE Live Events

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This past weekend I had the pleasure of attending two WWE Live Events in Arizona. Live Events are non-televised shows that focus more on wrestling and eliminate all the long speeches we see during televised shows. They used to be referred to as ‘house shows’.

I had not been to a WWE show in 15 years and was thrilled to get to go to not just one but 2 back-to-back. Both shows were a ton of fun and it was great to see my daughter’s excitement watching her first WWE events in person.

Cena

Last Friday night the show was held in Tucson at the Tucson Convention Center. I had never attended an event there before and it was a small arena where there is not a bad seat in the house and it really gave the show an old school feel which I loved.

The card was as follows:

Jack Swagger defeated Adam Rose and it was really surprising to see that both wrestlers were over with the crowd.

Bo Dallas was defeated by Erick Rowan in a short, squash match which was followed up by Dallas insisting on another match to redeem himself and was subsequently squashed by Zack Ryder. Once again, all three guys got a great reception.

Fandango & Stardust vs. R-Truth & Goldust was a fast moving match with the crowd constantly cheering and chanting ‘Cody’ to mock Stardust. R-Truth & Goldust won and ended the match with an entertaining dance-off between both guys.

Roman Reigns beat Rusev by DQ. Reigns was over with the Tucson crowd big time. Biggest pop of the night with the crowd never losing interest in this match.

Cesaro and Tyson Kidd vs. New Day vs. The Ascension vs. Prime Time Players in a Four Way Elimination match was another well worked match with Cesaro and Kidd winning in a bout that was fun throughout.

Nikki Bella vs. Paige was another solid match and even though the crowd loved Paige, Nikki was more over since Arizona is her home state. Nikki won in a solid match.

The main event was a street fight between John Cena and Seth Rollins. On television the crowds are always clearly divided between love and hate for Cena. Not in Tucson. Cena was very over with the crowd and only a very small smattering of people booed him. This was a great main event with Cena putting Rollins through a table and securing the win.

Orton

The next night the show was held in Phoenix at the US Airways Center and it was a pretty big crowd and our seats were amazing. It was the perfect contrast to the night before with the old school feel. Saturday’s show had a great modern, big arena feel.

The show started again with Jack Swagger beating Adam Rose and the two of them had an even better match than the night before.

R-Truth beat Fandango (w/Rosa Mendes) and just like the previous night R-Truth was very over with the crowd and after the match was done they brought some kids in attendance into the ring to chant ‘What’s Up!” with R-Truth and create a very memorable moment for them and their families.

We got the same Bo Dallas vs. Rowan bout with a second match against Ryder and it was just as fun as the night before. Well worked by all three guys.

We also got the same Four Way Elimination match with the main difference being Kofi Kingston teamed up with Xavier Woods for New Day this night with Xavier teaming up with Big E the night before. Yet another great match between four teams that worked hard to entertain the crowd and succeeded.

Ryback beat Rusev via DQ and it was a very well worked and well paced match. Rusev got great heat and Ryback got several ‘feed me more” chants throughout the match.

Goldust defeated Stardust in a great match that was a real joy to see since these two real-life brothers work incredibly well together. Goldust was very over with the crowd and Stardust got a lot of ‘Cody’ chants just like the night before.

The other repeat match was Nikki Bella beating Paige again with both ladies being very over with the crowd. This match was even better than the night before and it is nice to see the Divas being given more time to have actual wrestling matches.

The main event was John Cena and Randy Orton taking out Seth Rollins and Big Show. Rollins and Big Show got great heat and Cena and Orton were very over with the crowd. Orton got the biggest pop of the night by far and really seemed to be surprised by it and enjoyed it. Cena pinned Show after an Attitude Adjustment which seemed to shift the ring. The referee had to grab the ring ropes with Rollins and Orton getting low to the mat so as not to fall over. It was incredible to see that live.

Of course, I bought plenty of souvenirs both nights with my favorites being the John Cena autographed photo for myself and the Randy Orton autographed photo for my daughter. They have a couple of the wrestlers autograph a limited number of photos before the show and sell them at the merchandise booth for a mere $20 a pop. Awesome deal and I am quite thrilled to finally get Cena’s autograph and my daughter was quite excited to get her favorite wrestler’s signature as well.

The WWE really knows how to put on a great show for the fans and I cannot wait until they return to AZ!

Survivor Series 2014

 

 

 

WWE_Survivor_Series_2014_Official_Poster

Survivor Series 2014 was awesome! Mostly for one big reason which I will get to shortly.

With the exception of a few matches it was a relatively un-exciting show, but those matches, along with the big ending, made it one of the most memorable Survivor Series of all time.

On to the matches:

The pre-show featured 2…Fandango vs. Justin Gabriel and Cesaro vs. Jack Swagger. Fandango actually looked good in his match and shows some serious promise. Cesaro vs. Swagger was a throw-away match and really did nothing to further either performer’s career. Whereas Fandango’s match did a good job of re-introducing him to the WWE Universe, Cesaro/Swagger was solely to give them something to do.

The tag title match with The Usos/Star-Goldust/Los Matadores/The Miz-Mizdow was a great match that the crowd was into from the get-go. All four teams did a great job and Mizdow is so over with the fans right now it was great to see him and The Miz win the titles. It ended perfectly and the tag division in the WWE keeps getting better.

Dean Ambrose vs. Bray Wyatt was a great start to their feud. The two of them work very well together and they nicely set up their next PPV match in a couple of weeks which will be a TLC match.  I cannot wait!

In between all this was three pointless matches. An elimination style Divas tag match between 8 women with only a few actually able to carry a match, the Divas title match between Nikki Bella and AJ Lee was pointless since it ended in less than a minute, and Adam Rose/Bunny vs. Slator Gator should not have been on the card.

What really made the night was the 5-on-5 match between Team Cena (John Cena, Big Show, Dolph Ziggler, Erik Rowan, Ryback) vs. Team Authority (Seth Rollins, Mark Henry, Kane, Rusev, Luke Harper). What a great match filled with surprises. All 10 men, plus Triple H and his security, did an excellent job. There were plenty of surprises with Big Show turning on Team Cena, and Ziggler getting his much deserved big night in the spotlight. At the end of the match he was alone against Kane, Harper, and Rollins and eliminated them all to be the last man standing. The final pin on Rollins came with a a little help from none other than Sting! Triple H interfered at the end but was thwarted by the surprise appearance from the final WCW star to show up in the WWE. The pop from the crowd was huge, the moment was electric, and when he took out Triple H it was an awesome moment that made the whole show very memorable. I cannot wait to see what’s next from him and the WWE!

Overall, this was a solid show and more than worth the $9.99 I pay a month for the WWE Network.

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WWE Payback 2014

Parback

This was one those PPV’s that did not have a lot of positive expectations going in. Most fans online expected it to be boring, but it was anything but. Overall, it was a very good show with 4 big highlights.

The show started off with Sheamus defeating Cesaro to retain the United States title. A very good opening match between to great talents. A lot of back forth, a good story, and nice high spots. The crowd was into this match and it was a promising start to the night.

Bad News Barrett retaining his title against RVD was another solid title bout. RVD can still outperform a lot of wrestlers on the roster and BNB is very over with the crowd and can really put on a great match. RVD putting over Barrett was the right choice and I cannot wait to see BNB in future story lines. He is definitely a top performer.

John Cena over Bray Wyatt in a Last Man Standing match was the match of the night. I have not enjoyed this feud for the most part. Their match at Wrestlemania this year was slow and boring. Their rematch at last month’s PPV was significantly better, but the possessed child that came out at the end was stupid and ruined the match. This third match made it all worthwhile. A ton of back and forth, great high spots, a suddenly terrific story, and well thought out interference from Wyatt’s crew and the Usos made for an amazing match. The end of the match was also well done. It cracked me up, but did not come off as stupid. It cannot be properly explained and needs to be viewed.

The main event was Evolution losing to The Shield in a no holds barred, elimination match. It looked for a while that Evolution would go over, but suddenly The Shield came on strong in the end and eliminated all three members of Triple H’s team with none of The Shield being eliminated. Triple H made the correct call and put the correct guys over.

This was a solid show and it was clear that the talent all put their best feet forward and provided fans with an entertaining 3 hours that was well worth the money.