Six years, six years since WWE visited The Granite City. Seven years since I’d attended a WWE event and it was a wild night and I hope that it doesn’t take another six years for them to come back.
In comparison to 2009, the whole package was amazing. A HD screen, Greg Hamilton getting the crowd in the mood for some wrestling and even a little video from Daniel Bryan to welcome fans to the event.
Four championships were on the line and plenty of matches to watch but how was the show?
It kicked off with Dolph Ziggler defending his Intercontinental Championship against The Miz, who was accompanied by Maryse. A really great match to start with, these two work with each other very well and gave the fans a cracking showing. Maryse was sent to the back after being caught about to smack Ziggler, much to the dismay of the two guys sitting in front of me. She would lead to The Miz coming up short after she marched out to distract Ziggler, only for her to almost collide with Miz, who ate a Superkick shortly afterwards. Fun match which set the tone for the evening.
Next up was a triple threat tag team match, Rhyno was a big favourite as he was serenaded with an E C Dub chant early on. The majority of the match was The Usos and Breezdango blind tagging each other to punish Heath Slater. Highlight was Fandango with a lovely Aloha Arn which lasted an eternity. Eventually it broke down into a big scrap, Breeze attempted a sunset flip to escape one of the Uso’s clutches only to be catapulted into (I’ll guess) Jimmy’s crotch by Slater. A big Superkick party started before Rhyno ended it with a big Gore for the three count.
Curt Hawkins told Ireland that we needed to Face The Facts before countering a “What?” chant with “stupid people say what?” (which still got a “what?” chant…c’mon Aberdeen).
A quick squash as Jack Swagger made short work of Hawkins who was tapping out to The Patriot Lock while the ring bell was still echoing around the venue.
A fairly uneventful tag match followed with Carmella and Natalya facing Naomi and Nikki Bella. Nikki was impressive, countering Carmella’s Code of Silence into a Rack Attack 2.0 for the victory.
Big Banter Corbin battered Kalisto from the outset, interrupting Kalisto’s flippy entrance with a big forearm. Kalisto had a fight back but it wasn’t long before Corbin hit the End of Days for the win. Quick match but enjoyed it.
The first half main event was a big six man match between Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper and Randy Orton against Kane and American Alpha. Wyatt’s entrance was spine tingling with a lot of phone lights on creating a magical atmosphere. The crowd loved Orton, who teased them for the whole match by tagging in then out without doing a thing. It was masterful. Luke Harper was determined to be as flexy as possible by showing off his muscles at any opportunity. American Alpha were great with some fantastic tag team offense. The match broke down with Orton hitting an rKo outta knowhere which blew the roof off the AECC, Wyatt hit Sister Abigail but were both knocked down by Kane who hit a chokeslam on Harper for three.
Back from the interval we got a match worth missing in The Hype Bros against The Ascension. Mainly due to my overbearing hatred for Mojo Rawley…and general nothingness for The Ascension. Hype Bros won with the Hype Ryder. The crowd went mild.
The third title match of the evening with Becky Lynch defending her title against Alexa Bliss in a preview for Smackdown Live in Glasgow. Enjoyable encounter, Lynch won with the Dis-Armer.
It was main event time, and it was glorious. The main reason why I wanted to go, AJ Styles wrestling. Styles defended the WWE World Championship against Dean Ambrose. An action packed main event which spilled into the crowd briefly. We were even treated to a Styles Clash which garnered a long two count. Styles exposed a turnbuckle before deciding he was done for the evening, telling the referee to count him out while he collected his belt. Ambrose retrieved Styles who took advantage of the referee disposing the WWE World Championship by ramming Ambrose’s head into the exposed turnbuckle for a roll up victory. After a celebration, Styles rolled back into the ring to hit Ambrose with the title, only for Styles to be on the receiving end of Dirty Deeds to leave the fans going home happy.
Overall: Over the last few years I’ve fallen out of love with WWE, just can’t get into it when I’ve got all this great wrestling on my doorstep but this was such a fun show. Seeing so many familiar faces in the crowd was fantastic, all there to see these real life superheroes. Generally, the WWE is the reason we watch wrestling, or at least it was our first exposure to wrestling. All the little touches that Greg Hamilton provided, like getting up to give the referee the WWE World Championship after Styles hit the Styles Clash but froze when Ambrose kicked out, or clutching the ring bell hammer when the action spilled to ringside. All the good guys spent loads of time slapping hands and being interactive with the audience. There were a couple dud matches in my opinion, but the crowd were loud for anything and everything. Please don’t wait another six years to come back WWE.
WWE Intercontinental Championship – Dolph Ziggler defeated The Miz w/Maryse by Pinfall to retain the WWE Intercontinental Championship
WWE Smackdown Tag Team Championships – Triple Threat Tag Team Match – Heath Slater and Rhyno defeated The Usos (Jimmy and Jey Uso) and Breezdango (Tyler Breeze and Fandango) by Pinfall to retain the WWE Smackdown Tag Team Championships
Jack Swagger defeated Curt Hawkins by Submission
Nikki Bella and Naomi defeated Natalya and Carmella by Pinfall
Baron Corbin defeated Kalisto by Pinfall
Kane and American Alpha (Jason Jordan and Chad Gable) defeated Luke Harper, Bray Wyatt and Randy Orton by Pinfall
The Hype Bros (Zack Ryder and Mojo Rawley) defeated The Ascension (Konor and Viktor) by Pinfall
WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship – Becky Lynch defeated Alexa Bliss by Submission to retain the WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship
WWE World Championship – AJ Styles defeated Dean Ambrose by Pinfall to retain the WWE World Championship