1. The Cosmic Wasteland vs. Neville and Lucha Dragons:
Not a bad match but one that could’ve been better. Although, for a pre-show match it was pretty good overall. Seeing Stardust use Viktor as a pawn gave more proof to this “leader & minions” dynamic they have going on. The high-flying pace was a nice way to start the night.
2. Ryback vs. Kevin Owens (IC Title): Owens focusing on the arm of Ryback was a nice touch to allow Owens to dominate at the start of the match and put some fear into Ryback’s fans. In the end, with Owens’ raking Ryback’s eyes and rolling him up was the perfect heel touch. Hopefully this rivalry doesn’t end here as the actions Owens took are able to spur this good guy v. bad guy rivalry much farther. It doesn’t hurt that Owens can talk more crap with a title over his shoulder.
3. Dolph Ziggler vs. Rusev: The angle here, without Lana, seems odd at best. Rusev was in control until his emotions got the better of him, allowing Ziggler time to recover. Summer, upset at being ejected, attempts to hit the referee with her shoe, instead hitting Rusev. Ziggler hits the Zig Zag and picks up the win. Neither man taking Summer with them as they leave means she will have a lot of fast talking to do to apologize to Rusev.
4. The New Day vs. Dudley Boyz: Normally Xavier Woods is just a nuisance. Last night he disrupted the match and although the Dudley Boyz technically won they did not win the title, angering many fans who thought the match was going to end with new champions. Instead we were able to see Woods and his Rufio inspired hair go through a table. Not everything I wanted out of the match but a good consolation prize.
5. Nikki Bella vs. Charlotte: This match was actually pretty good. Aside from my personal issue of not being able to take Nikki seriously with half her butt hanging out of her shorts and her boobs falling out of her top I was impressed with the match the women put on. They told a good story. Nikki, the heel champion, viciously attacking Charlotte, the fan favorite. Going for Charlotte’s leg made a good story idea better and allowed for Charlotte’s win via the Figure 8 much more satisfying. The classic trope of fighting through the pain to victory was at play here and I enjoyed it. Watching Ric Flair cry was the emotional icing on the cake as his daughter raised her newly won Diva’s title over her head.
6. The Wyatt Family vs. Reigns, Ambrose and Jericho: Jericho as the surprise partner was a nice touch, given where the event was and Jericho’s history with Wyatt. The match was entertaining overall but I was disappointed with the end. Having Jericho blind tag in and NOT win the match was disappointing. Would it have made all the work Creative did to make Strowman look unbeatable a little irrelevant? Yes. But it would have made the rivalry a bit more balanced than the one-sided mess it has been. Jericho shoving past Dean and Roman makes me wonder what RAW will hold.
7. John Cena vs. Seth Rollins (U.S. Title Match): A good match overall with a few surprises (i.e. Cena’s hurricarana) as well as the WWE allowing Rollins to show off his strength against the “Superman” of the company Cena was a good touch to the match too. Rollins fighting tooth & nail to keep his title shows that it was important for him to have both. I’m glad Rollins didn’t treat this title as a “throwaway” title.