That Being Said: The WrestleMania Expedition – Part 6 of 13 – WWE Elimination Chamber 2013 (The Rock, John Cena, CM Punk)

Welcome! This is the sixth out of thirteen stops on “That Being Said: The WrestleMania Expedition”. For anyone unfamiliar with my work or recaps, I have disclaimers at the bottom of the article along with the “Expedition” schedule.

So, I’m not really sure what to expect here – I expected a good show at Royal Rumble, which doesn’t happen often, and I was let down. Not only that, they went in the most predictable and dull direction (in my opinion) possible leading into WrestleMania. This card looks even less impressive on paper, but at the same time, there’s an opportunity for them to change that direction and deliver a couple surprises. At the very least, I’m hoping Punk and Rock have a better match this time around – I thought they’d do a lot better than they did at Rumble.

Get this – former Inside Pulser James Alsop said I HAD to drink during this recap. That is what he said, right? That’s the way I remember it. Yeah, he did. Actually, he was pretty firm about it. He threatened me, as I recall. Sexually. So, I have no choice but to drink during this recap. Not that forced anal with James Alsop couldn’t be fun, but I bet he’d be a selfish lover. Anyway, I promise that the drinking will in no way diminish the fine, professional, and well-spoken quality of recaps that you people have come to expect from yours truly. I mean, let’s face it, my recaps have never been terribly good to begin with, and we all know that my style of recap understandably isn’t the type of thing that Inside Pulse wants to present as official live coverage anyway, so there’s absolutely no incentive for me to improve whatsoever.

All the same, I will do my best to not to talk about my balls. My big, beautiful balls.

 

That Being Said: The WrestleMania Expedition

Part 6 of 13: WWE Elimination Chamber 2013

Opening video package. Michael Cole, JBL and Jerry Lawler are commentating.

 

Pre-Show
Brodus Clay & Tensai .vs. Rhodes Scholars

Ha ha! No, I’m kidding. I didn’t watch this.

I just want to say though, that I’m glad they’re sticking with the Cody & Sandow tag-team. I’ve probably run out of ways to call Damien & Cody boring as fuck and cookie-cutter, so I’ll take the high road this one time and be politically correct. I’ll go with “they have much more to offer as a tag-team than as singles wrestlers.”

Matthew Harrak: Too bad this means that Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow are stuck on the pre-show.
Yeah, I’m with Harrak. These guys don’t belong on the pre-show anymore than they belong on the PPV.

Winners: Brodus Clay & Tensai

 

WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match
Alberto Del Rio (c) (w/ Ricardo Rodriguez) .vs. Big Show

The replays of this feud are highlighted during Big Show’s entrance. Del Rio had the wheels taken off his bus and poured orange paint on him. That’s compelling storytelling. Crowd is pretty dead for both entrances – Del Rio could use some better music if he’s gonna be a good guy. JBL says he wants a Mexican to announce his entrances.

Big Show in control to start, but Del Rio takes over before Show smacks him in the corner before clubbing him on the back. Bodyslam by Big Show. Del Rio hits a kick and a headbutt, but Show gest a boot up – Del Rio grabs it and hyper extends it. Big Show is down, and Del Rio taking over on him with kicks. Del Rio fires up the crowd, and they seem to be behind him now. He gives him a brutal kick and gets 2. Del Rio’s kicks are awesome, and the crowd is chanting “si!” a lot. Del Rio hits the ropes, and Big Show hits a spear. Big Show standing over Del Rio in the corner. He hits a Vader-Bomb for 2.

Big Show tries an elbow, but Del Rio moves out of the way and locks on the armbar right away. Crowd comes unglued, and Ricardo tries to keep Big Show from being able to put his foot on the ropes, but Show gets to the ropes anyway. Del Rio hits the 2nd rope and jumps at Show, but Show catches him and hits a bearhug. Big Show takes some time out to throw Ricardo’s bucket of confetti at him, and sets Del Rio up for a powerbomb – Del Rio holds it up and punches him before hitting a hurricanrana. Big Show rolls out of the ring, and Del Rio hits a suicide dive. I sure am nostalgic for those awesome exciting Shaemus World Heavyweight Title matches, aren’t you?

Big Show barely beats the count back in. Del Rio hits a standing senton, and gets a 2-count. Del Rio runs into a Big Show chokeslam, but kicks out at 2. Ricardo going apeshit on the outside, and Big Show loads up the Ham Hock Of Death – Del Rio retreats to the outside, but Big Show tosses him back in. Show goes for another chokeslam, but Del Rio tries to roll him up. This doesn’t work, and Show tries to powerbomb him again, but Del Rio hits a DDT on the way down and gets 2. Del Rio hits his killer enziguri move in the corner, and this gets him another 2.

Del Rio takes Show into the cross-armbreaker again, and the crowd is loving it, chanting “tap”. Big Show does roll over, dead lifts Del Rio over his head and slams him down on his back. That was a kinda cool exchange. Big Show knocks Ricardo off the apron, and gets ready to throw the bucket at him. Del Rio enziguri’s the bucket once, and then, for whatever reason, does it again. I think that was a screw-up for sure – did he miss it the first time? That blows for him. Del Rio then hits another enziguri in the corner, and then hits the cross-armbreaker again, and Show taps.

Winner & Still World Heavyweight Champion: Alberto Del Rio

Del Rio tries to fire the crowd up, but they’re kinda dead again. I think they were confused by the bucket spot. In his defence, it’s probably pretty tricky to hit an enziguri on a bucket that’s being held on the other side of the top rope. Del Rio walks to the back – not a bad match by any stretch, not as good as their SmackDown one where Del Rio won the belt but I found it better than Royal Rumble’s match.

Sneak peak at GI Joe: Retaliation.

 

WWE United States Championship Match
Antonio Cessaro (c) .vs. The Miz

During Cessaro’s entrance, Josh Matthews interviews DJ Catrona, who is a friend of The Rock, and some girl who Sawyer tells me is on Friday Night Lights. The Miz still doesn’t have Cat AIDS unfortunately, and comes out to his usual lack of any reaction. After Cessaro throwing Miz around barricades last week, Miz is now all taped up.

Miz jumps Cessaro and hits some kicks, followed by an elbow. Miz hits the apron and slides in under Cessaro for a rollup that gets 2. Miz then hits a kneelift, and tries to leapfrog him off an irish whip – Cessaro catches him and hits a shoulderbreaker. Cessaro hits a modified armbar, and Miz escapes with a knee to the gut followed by a knee to the head that gets 2. Cessaro wrenches the arm, and then drops his knee over it. Cessaro then wrenches Miz’s shoulder again and hits another armbar. Cessaro continues to works the arm, hitting a double stomp on it and driving it into the apron.

Cessaro misses a charge, and Miz hits a weak superkick. Miz with some kicks in the corner, then his admittedly kinda-cool corner clothesline. Crowd isn’t much for this match – Miz tries to dive off the top rope at Cessaro, but Cessaro catches him and drives him into another armbar. Miz rolls him up and gets 2. Miz dives off the apron at Cessaro, but Cessaro catches him in midair. Miz escapes Cessaro charging him into the corner and he runs Cessaro’s knee into the steps. Miz hits a DDT for 2.

Miz hits some kicks to the knee, and goes for the Figure-4. The crowd goes “whoo” and Lawler explains that this is because “they want to see The Miz emulate the Nature Boy!” Sure, that’s exactly what it is. They must really think a lot of people are fucking morons. Cessaro tries to fight out of this, and Miz ends up falling right on his dick. The ref DQ’s Miz for this.

Winner: Antonio Cessaro

I have to say, the crowd did boo the shit out of the ending, and then cheered quite a bit when Miz intentionally kicked Cessaro in the balls after the bell to prove his point. Small potatoes, but better than he’s recently gotten. Match wasn’t all that good really, but it’s Miz.

Backstage, Bryan asks if Kane is giving him the silent treatment. Bryan says that if anything, he should be mad at Kane for Royal Rumble. Bryan asks why he’s grumpy, and Kane says Bryan looks like one of the Seven Dwarves. Kane explains that he’s focused, and that he never main-evented WrestleMania before so this is a big deal for him. Bryan suggests that they do what they always do – watch each other’s backs until it’s just them at the end. Kane agrees – he says that Bryan will watch Kane’s back, and that Kane will also watch Kane’s back.

 

Elimination Chamber video package – I don’t think they can keep calling Elimination Chamber “career-threatening” when it’s been around for 10 years and hasn’t threatened anyone’s career.

Elimination Chamber Match
Randy Orton .vs. Chris Jericho .vs. Daniel Bryan .vs. Kane .vs. Sod .vs. Fat Sod
Winner Receives A WWE World Heavyweight Championship Title Shot At WrestleMania

Matt Harrak: I really like Swagger’s new look. It’s nothing spectacular but enough that he now looks like an adult & a star.
The more I look at Jack Swagger or listen to him speak, the more obvious it is that he’s a SLOW adult. Does Dutch Mantel need money this badly? And why the fuck did they change his name – Dutch Mantel has been around for decades. Did they think we wouldn’t notice? Because it worked so well with Tensai? They’re not even pretending that it’s not the same guy, either, because JBL acknowledged that he knew him.  A crazy Tea Party gimmick isn’t the worst thing in the world though, those people need to be put in a tank and deloused for their own good.

Holy Christ, I think Mark Henry actually got fatter since the last time I saw him. He looks like the fucking Kool-aid man. How is this fat fucker even supposed to fit in a pod?

James Sawyer: Breathe through your mouth while walking up a single stair? THAT’S WHAT I DO.

Crowd goes absolutely batshit for Orton, as usual, despite WWE’s attempt to have him lose to losers. Reaction of the night so far, easily. Bryan’s reaction was not as massive as usual, but still pretty good. Ditto for Jericho – Jericho and Bryan are starting the match, which isn’t much of a surprise.

FANTASTIC wrestling exchange to start that none of the other participants could have pulled off if they had a month off to practice. Jericho ends up catching a leapfrog and going for the Walls Of Jericho, which Bryan turns into the No Lock. Jericho escapes, and Bryan kicks him in the corner while the crowd yells “NO” at him. Jericho gets his feet up on a charge, and hits some chops. Bryan moonsaults off the top rope over him, and attempts to suplex him on the steel grating. Jericho lands on his feet and tries the same to Bryan, but the same result happens. Bryan wrestles Jericho down onto the grating, but Jericho slingshots Bryan into Kane’s pod. Jericho works some kicks on Bryan, and suplexes him.

Another wrestler is about to enter the match, and Slow Adult Swagger is in. He spears Jericho, and hits a Vader-Bomb. Swagger with some  kicks before taking Bryan and tossing him onto the grating and running him into the chains. Swagger gets back in the ring, and Jericho jumps him. “Y2J” chants from the crowd. Jericho misses a charge though, and falls out of the ring onto the grating. Swagger then tosses Jericho in the chains a few times, and Bryan does out of nowhere with a flying knee. He hits Swagger but lands on the grating – he’s unfazed though, and is working on Jericho as HUGE “Daniel Bryan” chants start right before Bryan misses a headbutt. Jericho rolls him up for 2.

We’re about to get another entry as JBL makes a Beyonce joke, because WWE are so current with their material. Kane is in now, and he takes down Jericho with some chops before taking Swagger, tossing him into Jericho, and hitting a splash. Kane then tosses Bryan into the corner, and Bryan hits a kick that that should have Swagger eating through a fucking tube. That was great. Kane then kicks Swagger in the face while Jericho is worked on by Bryan – Bryan then sneaks up on Kane and rolls him up and the crowd goes nuts. Kane kicks out, and he gets up and glares at Bryan – Bryan tells him to calm down and that he wants a hug. Kane says no. They point at the sign. They do duelling “YES” and “NO” chants and Bryan pie-faces Kane before Kane chops him down in retaliation. Bryan gives Kane a HARD dropkick in the corner. It would be THE STUPIDEST THING to turn Bryan heel and Kane face, and not the other way around. He kicks Kane and the crowd is chanting with him before Kane hits a sideslam for 2. Kane hits the top rope, but Bryan knocks him down. He climbs up for a suplerplex, but Jericho catches Bryan and puts him on his shoulders. Kane dives off the ropes which makes this a Doomsday Device on Bryan. Swagger sneaks in and tries to cover Bryan, but only gets 2. Swagger working on Kane now.

Randy Orton is next out of the pods, because Henry is still recovering from his walk to the ring, and the crowd goes batshit once again. Orton cleans house on everyone, finishing with beating up Kane on the grating before hitting his hangman’s DDT on Kane on the grating. Ouch. Someone takes down Orton, I missed who it was, but now everyone is down.

James Sawyer: Henry fogged up his pod and wrote “send more hohos” in the fog. Twenty sticks of butter laid down their lives to squeeze Henry in that pod.

Henry is out of his pod now, and people run into him but fall down because HE’S A MONSTER. He picks up Bryan for the World’s Strongest Slam and gets the pin.

Eliminated: Daniel Bryan, by Mark Henry

That’s. Fucking. Hilarious.

Henry then picks up Orton and tosses him through a pod.

James Sawyer: I haven’t seen Henry that pissed off since 7-11 ran out of pizza dogs. His fucking bacon fat back rolls are bigger than his biceps.

Kane goes to work on Henry, hitting some splashes in the corner. He goes to the top rope, but Henry catches him for the World’s Strongest Slam for 3.

Eliminated: Kane, by Mark Henry

Holy fuck. I don’t even know what to say to this. He just single-handedly beat the tag-team champions. I honestly can’t believe it.

On the grating, Jericho runs Henry into the chains. Then he and Swagger both work on him, and they hit a double suplex on the grating. All 3 guys are hurting from this. Crowd is chanting for Y2J as he tosses Swagger into the ring and hits the top rope for a cross-body that gets him 2. Jericho tries to roll Swagger over into the Walls Of Jericho, but can’t lock it in. Jericho hits a running bulldog, and goes for a Lionsault but Henry catches him from the grating and tosses him into the chains. He then throws Jericho into Swagger right in the ring. I think Randy is taking a nap or something? I haven’t seen him in like 10 minutes.

James Sawyer: Sweat while you eat? THAT’S WHAT I DO.

Henry goes for a Vader-bomb, but Swagger gets a superkick, Jericho gets a Codebreaker, and Orton slides into the ring for an RKO, and the crowd goes batshit. Orton gets the pin on Henry.

Eliminated: Mark Henry, by Randy Orton

Thank fucking God. I honestly can’t believe he did that well. I can’t believe he eliminated Bryan and Kane. I can’t believe they booked it that it took 3 guys to beat him. I can’t believe he was even put in this match. I can’t believe he even passed a physical.

Instead of leaving, he goes back in the ring and hits his lame finisher on everyone. Booker T and a bunch of referees come out, and tell him to leave. He does.

James Sawyer: Have a foot amputated before 40? THAT’S WHAT I DO.

Down to Jericho, Swagger and Orton, and everyone is down. They all start fighting, and Orton and Jericho toss Swagger into the Chamber wall. Jericho and Orton then start brawling, then go into a nice speedy exchange of counters that lead to Jericho jumping off the top rope into a dropkick from Orton. Swagger comes back in and eats a powerslam by Orton, then Jericho gets the same. While Orton is trying the hangman’s DDT on Swagger, Jericho hits a slingshot dropkick that gets him 2. Swagger with a lame belly-to-belly – it’s gotta be tough to make that move look that lame – and this gets him 2. Swagger goes for the Vader-Bomb, but lands on his feet and turns it into the Angle Lock. Jericho enziguri’s him in the back of the head, but Swagger then puts the Angle Lock on Jericho. Jericho turns this into the Walls Of Jericho, and Orton stupidly interferes and turns this into that cool DDT he does. That’s pretty stupid of him – it also only gets him 2. Nice series of near-falls at the end, if nothing else.

Orton then sets up BOTH guys in a hangman’s DDT, and the crowd starts going absolutely fucking batshit. He tries an RKO on Jericho, but Jericho blocks it and goes for a lionsault – Orton gets his knees up and hits an RKO in a GREAT exchange. Pin.

Eliminated: Chris Jericho, by Randy Orton

Swagger then rolls up Orton from behind and gets a pin.

Eliminated: Randy Orton, by Jack Swagger

Holy fuck!

Winner & #1 Contender For WWE World Heavyweight Championship: Jack Swagger

Holy fuck!!!

Okay. This was not a bad Chamber match by ANY means. I mean, I’ve seen better, but I’ve seen worse as well, especially given who was involved. I’m not slagging off the match at all.

But… between the Swagger and Henry stuff, I just, I don’t even know where to begin. Honestly, not much surprises me with WWE anymore, but here, I had to check the calendar on my computer, to make sure I hadn’t time-travelled back to 2011. I mean, I have an iMac that uses a backup called “Time Machine”, and I thought maybe… well, never mind what I thought. When I saw that I was still in present day, I then looked outside my window to see if I could see the Four Horsemen… the real ones… like, from the fucking Bible, and Vince McMahon turning into a giant snake and laughing maniacally. I didn’t see that, ao… what the fuck?!

Just holy fuck.

Lawler just made a fiscal-cliff reference. Again, very current.

Next! Holy fuck.

 

6-Man Tag-Team Match
John Cena, Irish John Cena & RyBerg .vs. The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, & Roman Reigns)

Let me just say that I’m fully on board with The Shield here. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t harbour any illusions whatsoever that they’re going to win this match, but as far as their message, it’s really hard for someone like me not to get behind. What I’d like to see more than anything is for The Shield to just absolutely lynch and destroy these guys, to the point where they can’t be on the show, at least for a while. I’m not a John Cena hater, I hate watching him and everything, but the man has his place on the show. I get that, but how am I supposed to NOT get on board with these guys taking out Shaemus and Ryback? If something isn’t done about Shaemus and Ryback, there’s a chance that at some point WWE will push them into being focal points of the company after Cena finally quits or gets Hep-C from a porn star. And those two being the focal point of WWE programming sounds like the worst fucking thing I’ve ever heard of. If they fired those guys tomorrow they would scarcely lose a dime, but if they keep using them this much, they’re likely to put guys like Barrett, Miz and Henry there as well. And, I’m sorry, but I would rather be fucked in the mouth with offshore drilling equipment underwater than have to watch that. So it’s hard not to get on board with The Shield here, and two of them are very good wrestlers to boot. Again, I realize I’m dreaming here, and that Shield is not winning happen. I’m just saying that’d be my ideal outcome here.

Cena gets a more positive reaction that I’m used to him getting, Shaemus gets his usual apathetic nothing, and Ryback gets his usual chants. Brawl to start, and Shaemus hits his retard clubs before Roman kicks his ass on the outside. They start working him over on the inside, and Rollins tags in and hits a sleeper before running him into the corner with shoulders. Ambrose in now, and he hits some elbows before Shaemus comes back out of the corner with the Brogue. Cena is cheering like a 12-year old on the apron before he tags in and kids scream. Roman has tagged in, but Cena takes him down before kicking his ass and hitting a 5 Knuckle Shuffle. He then beats up the other 2 at once and hits the STF before Ambrose knocks him off – Seth rollins then knocks his fucking head off with a flying springboard kick from the apron. Rollins is awesome. Reigns working on Cena now, with duelling chants from the crowd which The Shield is trying to fill. That’s a nice touch.

Rollins tags in and works on Cena until Cena knocks both Shield guys off the apron but eats a clothesline from Rollins for 2. He then hits a great splash in the corner. Duelling Cena chants are going insane now, and Rollins is trying to fuel them hard. His facials are great. Reigns tags in and he and Rollins do some double-teaming and get a near-fall which Shaemus breaks up. Roman hits a samoan drop for 2. Chinlock by Reigns, and the crowd is WAY hotter for this match than I thought they would be. It’s pretty decent so far – the other Shield match at Survivor Series or TLC against Ryback and Hell No was really good as well. Cena slowly powers out, and drops Regins. Surprisingly, before he can make it to the corner, Reigns hits a clothesline. He tags Ambrose, and he hits a clothesline and a leg-sleeper. I like Ambrose and all, but he sticks his tongue out a lot.

Cena powers out, and again surprisingly, Ambrose cuts him off and hits a nice DDT. They’ve done a good job building up convincing predictable Cena comebacks and then cutting them off single-handedly without shenanigans, which is a nice touch. Crowd is chanting “Feed Me More” and Cena tosses Ambrose out of the ring. Cena tags Ryback, and Ryback starts cleaning house. He tosses Rollins like 100 feet in the air, and then powerbombs him. He tosses Ambrose as well, and Reigns knocks him from behind. Shaemus is back in, as he’s had ample time to get his wind back, and a few fall out of the ring. Full-on brawl has broken out now, and Reigns spears Shaemus through a barricade. I still don’t think those PADDED barricade spots are all that good, but that one was better than the norm at least.

Rollins ill-advisedly jumps off the top rope at Ryback, but Ryback grabs him in mid-air – the other 2 save him though, and work on Ryback. Cena is back, and he takes out Reigns before hitting an Attitude Adjustment on Ambrose. Ryback tries to Shell-Shock Rollins, but Reigns spears him and Rollins pins him?!?!

Winners: The Shield

Holy shit! Another surprising ending, but this one is actually a good one.

Not only that, this match was 100% better than I thought it’d be given who the good guys were. These Shield guys are really good – their match with Ryberg and Hell No was really good as well. I didn’t think much of this Roman guy, but even he looked really good here. The crowd was INSANELY hot for this match, moreso than in the Chamber.

I did not see that coming. That’s awesome. I can’t even think of the last time that I thought a match was this good and a win came this much out of left field. EVERYBODY thought it was a foregone conclusion that Cena’s team was winning, and this is one of the few times that I actually agreed with everyone. The craziest thing is, the Creatively Endeavored guys actually called this one correctly?! I’m checking outside my window for apocalypse signs again.

 

Dolph Ziggler is out now, talking about how he’s not booked on the PPV. He talked about Jack Swagger having a shot at the WHC at WrestleMania, and says that his briefcase also guarantees him a shot. Booker T comes out, and they jabber about nothing for a few minutes.  Booker makes a match.

Dolph Ziggler .vs. Kofi Kingston

This could be good, these two have had some great matches in the past. Springboard by Kofi LAUNCHES Dolph across the ring HARD, but then Kofi misses a charge and hits the post. Ziggler with a sleeper, but Kofi powers out – he ducks 2 clotheslines, then does 3 leapfrogs over Ziggler before Ziggler catches him in a sleeper. Kofi tosses him to the outside, and tries a suicide dive – Ziggler pushes Big E in the way, and AJ slaps Kofi when he gets back in the ring and Big E has the ref distracted. Kofi takes a HUGE dive outside of the ring, but again, Ziggler makes Big E take the move. Back in the ring, Kofi hits a springboard clothesline and gets 2. Kofi scales the ropes, but Dolph knocks him down before hitting a move… I’m not sure what to call it. It started out as a superplex, but then he just dropped him on the turnbuckle in mid-air. It was cool, I haven’t seen anything like it before. He then hits his finish for the pin.

Winner: Dolph Ziggler

Matt Harrak: I’d be more excited for this match if I wasn’t utterly bored to death with Kofi Kingston.
But, you guys think Wade Barrett ISN’T boring and terrible? It… doesn’t add up.

Decent match that could have used a bit more time, but it was impromptu after all. Kofi and Ziggler both looked great here, I love Kofi and all but this was his best showing in a while. It probably helped that he wasn’t wrestling The Miz or Wade Barrett.

After the match, Big E goes to the ring and beats up Kofi. This goes on for a few minutes until he hits a finisher twice – the crowd even chants “one more time” for him to hit his finisher on Kofi again. That’s… unexpected.

 

A particularly painful WWE App conversation takes place between the commentators. After that, a particularly painful conversation takes place between Brodus, Tensai and the Funkettes. At least until this line happens:

BRODUS: What do those Japanese characters on your face mean?
TENSAI: … I’m actually not sure. It’s supposed to be scripture… but with my lock, it’s probably a take-out menu.

That was okay. Then they dance.

 

WWE Divas Championship Match
Kaitlyn (c) .vs. Tamina Snuka

Apparently they’re setting up WWE Diva storylines on the WWE app now. I don’t recap Diva matches. So I didn’t see this match, but I imagine it looked something like this:

raw20july09

Actually, you know what? I read the Roundtable, and my man Jonah Kue actually said he was looking forward to this match. I suppose it’s possible he ingested furniture polish and went mad, but Kue usually has pretty good taste. And there’s been 3 good matches in a row, which is basically unprecedented. So I’m gonna give this a go. Don’t let me down, girls!

Divas are watching from the back, and they hit some strikes to start. After a bit of this, Tamina catches Kaitlyn on the apron and runs her into the post. Tamina then hits some… kicks. This gets her 2. Tamina then goes for the Superfly Splash, but she misses. Kaitlyn then hits the spear for the pin.

Winner: Kaitlyn

Well, that was lame. I should have avoided this in the same way that one would avoid a treacherous pit of some sort. Didn’t someone tell me that WWE have Sara Del Ray training people now? I’m not one of those people that assume someone can train well just because they wrestle well, but either way, imagine her showing up and finding out what she has two work with.

* Sara Del Ray shows up for her first day. *

JERRY BRISCO: Hi, Sandy! Nice to meet you!
SARA DEL RAY: It’s Sara.
BRISCO: That’s great, Sandy. Well, let me introduce you to a couple of the girls you’ll be working with. This is Kaitlyn, and this is Tamina Snuka.
SARA: Nice to meet you two. What’s your experience like?
TAMINA: Well, Jimmy Snuka is my father.
SARA: … okay. And?
TAMINA: And what?
SARA: And, what does that have to do with you?
TAMINA: I don’t understand. Jerry, what is she…
BRISCO: I’m as lost as you are.
SARA: Okay, never mind. Kaitlyn, what’s your experience like?
KAITLYN: I worked at Adult-Cams.net a few years before this. John Laurenitis had seen me online a bunch of times, and offered me a job if I’d let him give me a Clev…
BRISCO: Okay, okay, no need to get into the details here. Why don’t you girls show Sara here what you can do?
* Kaitlyn and Tamina re-create the exact same match from tonight. *
SARA: Is there something I should know here?
BRISCO: Such as?
SARA: Are they retarded?
BRISCO: What do you mean?
SARA: Well, the blonde is horrible, and the big one is horrible. And the big one also appears to have some variant of mad cow disease.
BRISCO: Well, do the best you can, Sandy. If it doesn’t go well, remember that both they and you have literally no job security.

* End Scene *

I assume after this, typical internet wrestling people will talk about how these girls are “improving” or talk about how the division is about to get some “renewed focus”.

Matt Harrak: Kaitlyn is growing on me in the ring & on the mic. Now she just needs some competition.
See?

 

Rock / Punk video package.

WWE Championship Match
The Rock (c) .vs. CM Punk

The Roundtable suggested that the winner of this match was a foregone conclusion. I don’t think it is as much, as I still think it’s possible they could go the Brock / Rock route that I predicted a month ago. Cena / Rock does seem quite likely, though. Punk got a good reaction and people came GODDAMN UNGLUED for The Rock.

Faint “Rocky Sucks” chants to start, and they posture for a bit. The announcers are questioning why Vince put the “Rock loses the title if he’s DQ’d or counted out” stipulation in the match, so maybe a swerve there? “Let’s go Rocky / CM Punk” duelling chant now, similar to the Rumble. Punk takes Rock down with a shoulder twice, and then Rock hits 2 hip-tosses and Punk bails out of the ring to escape. He gets back in and slaps Rock in the face, so Rock beats the fuck out of him. Punk smiley at him, gets up, leers at him, and spits in his face and looks all euphoric – very, very nice touch. Rock beats the fuck out of him again, and takes him outside the ring and clotheslines him hard. All 3 announcers are saying that Rock needs to calm down, and I don’t really understand why. I assume it’s because Rock could get DQ’d and lose the belt, but we’re a long way from that. As they get back into the ring, Punk lands a clothesline.

Sleeper by Punk, with duelling “Let’s Go Rocky / CM Punk” chants, with the Punk chants a lot louder than last time. I don’t know if he has the majority, but it’s close. Punk then turns it into a choke, which the referee notices so Punk is just like “it’s a chinlock!” which is pretty funny. Punk hits a move for 2, and then goes back to the sleeper. Rock powers up and hits some strikes but he runs into a Punk boot. Punk goes to the apron and springboards into a clothesline for another 2. Every time Punk gets a pin, Heyman yells how much closer he is to beating Rock, which is a nice touch. That’s very “90’s heel Jimmy Hart” manager of him. Another sleeper by Punk, but Rock powers out with punches and works on Rock in the corner. Punk ducks a punch and hits a high knee, which was a nice spot.

Knee by Punk on Rock, followed by a top-rope elbow for another 2. Rock kicks Punk’s ass on the outside, and goes inside and tries for a Rock Bottom – Punk kicks him in the head instead, and gets 2 again. He tosses Rock out of the ring, and has Heyman distract the ref while he gets Rock up on the table. Punk hits a Rock Bottom on the table, but the table doesn’t break – although I’m not sure if it was supposed to or not. Punk almost gets the count-out win but Rock makes it back in, so Punk beats on him for a bit. Punk goes off the ropes but eats a samoan drop by Rock. Both guys down.

Rock hits some strikes, and then they trade strikes for a while until Rock hits a flying clothesline and a DDT. They’ve done more rest-holds this time around, but that’s been good as it almost seems like they’re trying harder to work around any limitations either guy has between injuries and cardio, rather than trying to do something they can’t. Whatever it is, cardio doesn’t seem to be an issue for Rock this time around. Punk goes for a slingshot clothesline from the apron, but Rock catches it and turns it into a Rock Bottom for 2. they chase each other out of the ring, and when they get back in, Punk tosses Rock into the ring and hits the GTS. He pins Rock, and would have gotten at least 5 pinfalls had the referee been around, but alas he wasn’t. Interesting.

Another ref goes to the ring, and Punk wonders why THAT ref didn’t count Rock down. Rock then catches Punk in a spinebuster and hits the People’s Elbow, and NOW the referee slides in the ring… but Punk kicks out. Crowd goes nuts, they thought that was it for sure. Something weird happens with the referee’s ankle, and he rolls out of the ring. Fully conscious but outside the ring hobbling around on his ass. That’s… odd. Not going to pretend to know whether that was intentional or what.

Heyman hands Punk the title, and Punk tries to nail The Rock – Rock ducks, and he hits Heyman. Rock hits the Rock Bottom, and gets the pin.

Winner: The Rock

 

This PPV was way better than I expected. There were 3 matches in a row that I thought were okay to great, and some surprising endings. Not all the surprises were good, but even Henry and Swagger didn’t ruin an okay Chamber match despite their best efforts. That Shield match was the best match I’ve seen since I started recapping on this tour, that match just had insane heat from the crowd and I thought The Shield did great. Hopefully any fears about these guys falling off the map are less well-founded now, so keep your fingers crossed. Rock and Punk wasn’t great, but it was good, and without question better than their Rumble match. Punk looked like a rock star hanging with Rock as well as he did, too, which is as much as you can ask for if Rock is winning.

Either that, or Alsop was right and the Jack helped. I don’t think so though, I actually thought this was good. My apologies to the commenter who wanted the rage-fuelled recap – normally I have no issue doing that because usually watching full shows and seeing the guys they decide to push just gets me there naturally, and I thought this show might have been the poster child for that. I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I say that I’m probably the writer on here with the LEAST patience for the current WWE product, so finding this as decent as I did should tell you something, especially on a PPV where that fat sod Mark Henry looked strong and  that regular sod Jack Swagger earned himself a World Heavyweight Title shot.

Hey, at least I probably finally agree with the Creatively Endeavored guys on something, right? They had to like this show. They like some of the lamest shit out there, even like Wade Barrett! And that guy couldn’t even make it into the preshow of this! So I assume this show would be well beyond their usual low standard, right?

Matt Harrak: All in all, a decent PPV that didn’t produce anything truly memorable. At least ‘Mania is next.
God damn it. Oh well.

 

Well, that’s all the time we have for this week. Again, any and all comments and thoughts are always appreciated, or you can feel free to e-mail me at bdouglas@insidepulse.com. Also, feel free to follow me on Twitter @BDInsidePulse if you’re into such things.

The 7th and next stop on That Being Said: The WrestleMania Expedition will take place on March 7th, when I review, let me see here…

… oh, fuck me in the taint with a redwood. TNA Impact.

This has been “That Being Said”. Thanks for reading and I’ll see you in hell.

I’ll be in my trailer.

 

Disclaimers:

DISCLAIMER #1: These recaps should in NO way be treated as a professional and unbiased play-by-play of whatever the show in question is. Inside Pulse has no shortage of professional and live coverage, so if that’s what you’re looking for, I refer you to Mike Gojira, Scott Keith, Justin Czerwonka, or another of their ilk. Rather than a recap per se, I look at this as an ongoing 3-month narrative from someone who doesn’t normally watch full shows beginning to do exactly that for WrestleMania season. The reason this idea sounds like fun to me is that this time period is usually when many casual or former fans will tune back in anyway. So I know that as I’m tuning back in, many others will be as well.

DISCLAIMER #2: Quite often, when myself or another writer rips on a show (justifiably so or otherwise), they will get their fair share of people believing or commenting that they believe the recapper thinks that wrestling now is worse than it’s ever been. Usually it’s something like “WHAT, SO THE ATTITUDE ERA WAS SO GREAT?!?! THOSE MATCHES SUCKED TOO!” or something like that, even when you haven’t mentioned the Attitude Era at all. In fact, that’s a popular opinion out there right now in general – that wrestling is worse now than it’s ever been. Me personally, just for the record – I definitely think 2007-2009 and 2003-2004 definitely hold up worse than the current product. Not MUCH worse, mind you – and I do believe that current shows are pretty lame. But if I’m being honest, it’s not as bad as it’s ever been, much as it may feel that way sometimes.

DISCLAIMER #3: In the spirit of Disclaimer #2… I am going to do my best to go into these shows with an uncynical and unjaded eye. I’m hoping to like what I see – there is some stuff going on that COULD be promising depending on where they go with it and who they decide to feature prominently. But I promise nothing in terms of what’s going to come out of me if I don’t like the shows. Anyone who read any of my TNA recaps or the odd WWE recap that I did knows that I have very little tolerance for stupid or boring stuff. If, an hour into a 3-hour RAW, they decide to give me Shaemus against Cody Rhodes for 20 minutes while Michael Cole tells me they’re the future of the business and that I still have Ryback against Wade Barrett to look forward to in the second hour, then I’m going to feel like putting my fucking dick through a bone decalcinator, which means that me feeling like putting my fucking dick through a bone decalcinator is something you’re probably going to hear about.

DISCLAIMER #4: The obvious one – the opinions and views I express are my own, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Inside Pulse or it’s owners, staff, or numerous writers.

DISCLAIMER #5: Regardless of how it all turns out, weather I find the shows good, boring or bad, if nothing else, I’m going to try my best to to have fun with these recaps over this 3-month period. I’m a guy who can usually have fun with a recap even when watching a show I don’t enjoy. For me, that’s the point of this experiment – or of anything else I may write for Inside Pulse – to have fun. Worst case scenario, I lose all patience and have a rage blackout like I’ve done on on the odd recap before, and sometimes even that can be entertaining. Regardless, the point is – this is for fun – and I hope you have as much fun reading this season as I’m hoping to have writing it.

 

“That Being Said” WrestleMania Tour Schedule:

PREMIERE – Jan 14: WWE RAW (20th Anniversary)
Jan 23: WWE Main Event
Jan 27: WWE Royal Rumble

Feb 01: WWE SmackDown
Feb 14: WWE NXT
Feb 17: WWE Elimination Chamber

Mar 07: TNA Impact
Mar 10: TNA LockDown
Mar 14: TNA Impact

Mar 18: WWE RAW
Mar 29: WWE SmackDown
Apr 01: WWE RAW
FINALE – APR 07: WrestleMania

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