Talking Stick Resort Arena
We start the show with Rey Mysterio cutting a promo about his upcoming Universal Championship match. Brock Lesnar interrupts Rey alongside Paul Heyman! Rey snatches the mic out of Heyman’s hands before he can say his intro but Lesnar attacks Rey in retaliation. Lesnar then attacks Rey’s son Dominik! The segment ends with the Mysterios laying decimated by ringside and Brock Lesnar standing tall.
Grade: B+, I want to see Dominik start his wrestling career by trying to fight in honor of his dad or Rey getting the “David vs. Goliath” match with Lesnar.
Becky Lynch is joining commentary for this match. We get a commercial break very soon into the match as Becky and Sasha get into a staredown.
Back live and Sasha is in complete control of Alexa. Alexa creates some separation but Sasha gets the momentum back with a knee strike. Sasha fakes an injury and dead-legs Alexa for a weak pinfall.
Post-Match: Becky charges the ring and attacks Sasha, which sends Sasha running into the crowd. Becky cuts a promo about how Sasha can’t run on Sunday at Hell in a Cell.
Result: Sasha wins via pinfall after a weak kick to the knee of Alexa
Grade: C-, why have Alexa (a tag champion) lose in such a manner?
Seth Rollins Backstage Interview
Rollins says he is disgusted by Lesnar’s actions and that he doesn’t know how to prepare for The Fiend at Hell in a Cell. Rollins issues an open challenge for the Universal Championship tonight due to Rey’s injuries suffered tonight.
Grade: C+, stop having Rollins force catchphrases down our throats! At least we have a surprise later tonight.
Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler (Raw Tag Team Champions) vs. Heavy Machinery (Otis and Tucker) in a Championship Match
Tucker starts in the ring with Ziggler but tags in Otis quickly as they are manhandling Ziggler. Roode is able to get a tag but Otis is too big for the champs to double-team. Otis knocks them away as Tucker tags in. Heavy Machinery shows the champs how tag team moves are done and we go to commercial with the challengers standing tall.
Back live and Tucker was in control until Roode pulled down the rope making Tucker fall to the outside. Roode and Ziggler exchange tags as they beat down Tucker in their corner. Tucker kicks out of a Roode Spinebuster so Ziggler tags back in. Tucker sends Ziggler face-first into the ring post which creates an opening for Otis to get the hot tag! Ziggler gets to Roode for the tag but Otis takes care of business on the champs. Otis hits a Double Caterpillar! Heavy Machinery sets up for The Compactor but Ziggler makes the save with a Zig-Zag and a Superkick. Roode hits the Glorious DDT for the pinfall.
Result: Roode and Ziggler retain via pinfall after Roode hits a Glorious DDT on Tucker
Grade: B, Otis is so over… come on WWE, put the belts on them!
MizTV w/ guests Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair
The Miz starts off by saying he hopes that Rey and Dominik get well soon. Flair comes to the ring first. Hogan makes his entrance and he brought Jimmy Hart with him. I fully expect The Fiend to make a surprise attack on the legends.
Flair says he is tired of Hogans music but Miz says the “WOOO’s” have been going on for a long time too. Flair is showing signs of age… he says that he is a bigger draw than Hogan after stumbling on his words. Hogan challenges him to a fight! The 2 had us going for a second but they both admit that they are too old for this. Miz announces at Crown Jewel there will be a Team Hogan vs. Team Flair 5-on-5 elimination match! Hogan announces that Seth Rollins is the captain for Team Hogan. Flair counters with Randy Orton as his team captain. Orton challeneges Rollins to a match right here and now… and Rollins accepts!
Grade: C, oh no… more Saudi Arabia money for WWE…
Grade: A-, at least Rusev has a chance of looking strong for this Saudi Arabia match.
Rusev Backstage Interview
Rusev gets asked about Lana but he says he’s not answering questions about problems at home. Rusev says that Rollins owes him for saving him earlier. So, Rusev challenges Rollins for the Universal Championship tonight!
Grade: B, Rusev’s character is in flux…
More of the same from AOP. Just bring them back already!
Grade: D, this is getting old
Rapid-fire tags to start until Ivar slows things down with Anderson. Gallows gets the tag and gains control over Ivar. Erik makes the tag when Ivar creates some separation. Commercial break.
Back live as The OC is taking advantage. Erik kicks out of a Chokeslam by Gallows. Ivar makes a tag and hits a splash on Gallows from the top rope. Pinfall after a 300+ pound splash.
Result: The Viking Raiders win via pinfall after an Ivar splash on Gallows
Grade: C+, at least The Viking Raiders got a win!
Cesaro Backstage Interview
Grade: C+, consistency with Cesaro’s character here but why does Ricochet care?
Ricochet is off to a lightning-quick start but Cesaro uses his power to halt the attack. Cesaro gets sent to the outside and Ricochet hits a tope suicida before they reenter the ring. Cesaro hits a backbreaker and some uppercuts to regain the advantage. Cesaro hits a variation of the GTS but Ricochet kicks out. Ricochet hits a crazy Drangonrana for the pinfall, ala Rey Mysterio.
Result: Ricochet wins via pinfall after a Dragonrana
Grade: A-, I’m not going to complain about seeing these 2 wrestle each other.
FireFly Fun House
Rabblin’ Rabbit has died, oh no! Bray Wyatt says, “oh well” and throws him away. Mercy the Buzzard says that they’re scared but Bray says it is okay to be scared. Bray compares being scared to Hell in a Cell and how Seth Rollins is scared of “Him.” Bray then says that he is going to go and tell “Him” to be nice to Seth before laughing maniacally… “just kidding.”
Grade: A, so so so SO good.
AJ Styles (U.S. Champion) vs. Cedric Alexander in a U.S. Championship Match
A very fast-paced start as Cedric gets caught trying to go for a tope suicida. AJ hangs Cedric on the top rope which forces Cedric to fall to the outside. AJ then hits a variation of the Phenomenal Forearm to the outside. Commercial break.
Back live and Cedric has hit a springboard flatliner to create separation. Cedric hits a big kick but AJ kicks out. AJ then hits a neckbreaker for a 2-count. Cedric reverses the Phenomenal Forearm into a Michinoku Driver but AJ kicks out again! AJ hits a facebuster for a 2-count now! After a finisher-reversal fest, AJ hits the Styles Clash for the pinfall.
Result: AJ Styles retains via pinfall after the Styles Clash
Grade: A-, this is a great fued and I hope it continues.
The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford) Backstage Promo
Grade: B, finally, they are in a match!
Lacey Evans vs. Natalya
Hopefully, this is the end of this “rivalry” because it has not been interesting.
Lacy slams Natty face-first into the steel steps but Natty kicks out of a pinfall attempt. Lacy hits a Bronco Buster but Natty kicks out again. Lacy goes to the taunt the crowd but Natty no-sells the previous moves and gets the advantage. Natty goes for the Sharpshooter but Lacy kicks her away. Lacy then rakes the eyes while the ref isn’t looking rolls Natty up, by the tights, for the victory.
Post-Match: Lacy hits a Woman’s Right on Natty
Result: Lacy wins via pinfall after cheating twice
Grade: D+, I just want this to end.
Paul Heyman Backstage Interview
Heyman apologizes for what happened to Rey and Dominic earlier in the night. Then, Heyman goes on to say that Lesnar is in fight mode and no one is safe.
Grade: B+, love the intensity in this promo!
Maria Kanellis Backstage Interview / Sasha Banks Promo
Maria tells us that Rusev is not the father of her unborn child. Thanks for that information.
Sasha Banks enters out of nowhere and steals the mic. She cuts a promo on Becky about how she will win Hell in a Cell.
A limousine then enters the scene before the commercial break… is Vince McMahon making a shock appearance?
Grade: B, solid stuff here.
Main Event: Seth Rollins (Universal Champion) vs. Rusev in a Universal Championship Match
Rusev doesn’t even get an entrance? Oh boy, a jobber entrance for a #1 contender…
Who was in that limo?
Back live and Rollins hits a blockbuster to create separation. Now a slingblade from Rollins and a tope suicida 2x. A botched reversal on a dive leaves the 2 men to improvise a slam by Rusev. Rollins hits a Falcon Arrow but Rusev kicks out. Rusev reverses The Stomp and hits a superkick but before he can go for a pinfall, Bobby Lashley appears… with Lana! Lashley and Lana are making out right in front of Rusev? Rusev is being forced to cuckold this… I am so uncomfortable watching this. Is Vince still mad that a guy like Rusev is married to someone like Lana? What the hell is this…
The Fiend has Rollins.
Result: No contest
Grade: F, wtf.
What the hell was that?! This was the “season premeir” episode?! Oof. What did I just spend 3 hours watching?
Overall Grade: D+, the bad far outweighs the good.