Welcome back to Mitch Nickelson’s review of your favorite subscription-exclusive Tuesday night professional wrestling show. I, of course, am Mitch Nickelson. I am always thankful that you would not only watch this show but you would also read my lovely blend of recap and opinion.
This week looks to be another solid hour, as Main Event usually is. Chris Jericho is advertised to be on the show. He’ll be conducting his always-entertaining interview segment, The Highlight Reel. His guest is supposed to be WWE Hall of Famer Bret Hart. That’s some star power right there.
Also advertised is a U.S. Championship match between Sheamus and Alberto Del Rio. While it does feel like we’ve had that match more than a few times recently, tonight is guaranteed to be different. Joey Styles announced via Twitter earlier in the day that tonight’s bout will be a Last Man Standing match. It might just get brutal between these two.This is a free preview week for the WWE Network. Maybe the show tonight will be just slightly more special.
Live from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, this is Main Event. Tom Phillips and Byron Saxton are our announcers.
United States Championship Match
Sheamus vs. Alberto Del Rio
Last Man Standing Match
Sheamus comes out first and grabs a microphone. He says that he won’t need the luck of the Irish to beat Del Rio. When he gets to Battleground, he plans on being the first man since Edge to carry both the Intercontinental and US titles. Del Rio cuts him off from the big screen. Del Rio says that if anyone is going to be unifying the titles, it’ll be him. Sheamus tells him that anything goes tonight, including kendo sticks, chairs, and tables. They both banter and Del Rio finally decides to come out to start this match.
When Del Rio gets announced, he gets a hearty boo. Sheamus gets applauded. The belt is held up as the two start pummeling each other. Sheamus throws Del Rio into a barricade. The ref starts counting and only gets to two. It’d be funny if that was all it took.
Sheamus ripped off the announce table cover and threw it at Del Rio. He did his Rolling Senton to him on the outside. Del Rio finds a kendo stick and wails on Sheamus as they go to a break.
Back from the break and Sheamus looks hurt in the ring. During the break, Del Rio hit his opponent with a diving kendo strike from the top rope. He does it again. He continues to use the stick, driving it into Sheamus’ ribs. He goes for another strike off the top rope, but Sheamus deflects it.
The two trade shots and Sheamus starts to gain the advantage. He hits Del Rio with the Irish Curse Backbreaker. He gets counted up to seven on that. Sheamus grabs the kendo stick and Del Rio begs him not to use it. Sheamus does, however. Several strikes and Del Rio is grounded again. The crowd chants “We want tables” while Del Rio gets another seven count.
Del Rio connects with a big DDT and now Sheamus gets a count. Del Rio kicks him and also goes for a running kick, but finds himself receiving the Ten Beats of the Bowery. It was more like twenty, though. Poor Alberto. He gets counted on the outside and it goes to nine this time. We get another commercial break?
This commercial break is interesting because they’re advertising a Wrestlemania Rewind about CM Punk. I’m sure it was recorded and planned for air before he exited the company, but it’s sure to add to any speculation that might be out there.
Back from the second break in the first 20 minutes and the crowd is still chanting for tables. Sheamus rolls to the outside and grabs himself a chair. Before he can use it, Del Rio cuts him off with a kendo stick. Del Rio sees Sheamus dazed and still holding the chair up. He then does his kick, Van Daminator-style, to a kneeling Sheamus. Does that count as a chair shot to the head? I didn’t think WWE did those anymore.
Del Rio props up the chair into a corner. There’s a little exchange that ends with Del Rio’s knee into Sheamus’ stomach. Del Rio goes for a chair shot but Sheamus stop it with his bare hands. He slams Del Rio, then goes for the Brogue Kick. Del Rio avoids that and hits the Backstabber instead.
Del Rio went for another kick, no chair this time, but got hit with the White Noise instead. They both get counted but Sheamus gets back on his feet at eight. Sheamus finally grabs a table from under the ring and the crowd loves that. He sets it up near the corner.
Del Rio battled back and kicks Sheamus in the head in the corner. Count again that ends at eight. Del Rio attacks and rams his shoulder into the chair on the corner. He applies the cross arm breaker. Sheamus lifts him up by his arm that is still in a submission hold and drops Del Rio through the table he set up earlier. The ref goes for the count and almost counts them both out, but they both get up. Sheamus used his Brogue kick and Del Rio fails to get up after ten. Sheamus is the last man standing.
Winner and Still US Champion: Sheamus
Chris Jericho’s return segment with The Miz and Bray Wyatt is replayed. Tom Phillips said that he has breaking news as they announce that Chris Jericho will face off against Bray Wyatt at Battleground.
Renee Young Interviews Chris Jericho
Chris Jericho says that the WWE is more than just about flashing jackets and surprise returns, it’s about survival. He used the “along came a spider” line about Bray Wyatt and said that he crushes spiders. He talks about Bret Hart being on his Highlight Reel later in the show and says that WWE Main Event will never, ever, be the same again.
There’s a recap of last night’s main event on Raw, with Seth Rollins taking on WWE World Heavyweight Champion John Cena. Lots of interference and an almost cash-in. Good stuff. A graphic is shown for the Fatal 4-Way main event at Battleground.
Nikki Bella vs. Natalya, Naomi, Eva Marie, Cameron, Summer Rae, and Rosa Mendes
This is a six on one handicap match. Poor Nikki. She looks sad in the ring with ring with her spikey baseball hat. Why is is spikey? She could use it as a weapon, I guess. She probably won’t. It sounded like Natalya got a decent pop, which makes sense because this is in Canada. Cameron wasn’t at ringside, which Tom and Byron point out.
There’s a pretty mean smack that Nikki did on Summer Rae that was worth pointing out. The more talented wrestlers, like Naomi and Natalya, didn’t even tag in. They are apparently friends with Nikki and were conflicted about being in the match. I don’t watch Total Divas, so I don’t get all of these dynamics with the ladies. Eva Marie actually got the pinfall.
Winners: Eva Marie and Friends
Cameron came out and attacked Naomi after the match was over. It was a quick strike and then she ran to the back. Will they fight at Battleground? I assume AJ Lee and Paige are already fighting, so will we have another Pay-Per-View with more than one women’s match like we did at Money In The Bank?
Chris Jericho’s Highlight Reel With Bret Hart
A loud “Y2J” chants welcomes Jericho. The crowd is excited for this. Jericho says that he’s happy to bring the Highlight Reel to Main Event and the WWE Network for the first time…right here in Ottawa. That was a good cheap pop that the crowd ate up. Jericho called Bret Hart one of his idols and a friend, then announced him.
Bret Hart gets a warm reception as he walks to the ring. Bret says that it’s a great day to be back in the capital. He says it’s a great time with the launch of WWE network. He talks about Jericho being in the legendary Dungeon and jokes that Chris tapped out to Bret’s sister. He gives Chris props about his championships. Jericho jokes with him that the crowd tonight wouldn’t be chanting “Y2J” if they saw Bret’s sister. She was a tough chick.
Jericho talks about great matches and asks Bret who some of his greatest rivals were. Bret names Mr. Perfect, his brother Owen, Stone Cold, The Undertaker, and Shawn Michaels as his greatest rivals. To the excitement of everyone, HBK’s music hits and the crowd gets pumped. I get even more excited when we actually get…Damien Sandow!
“You Screwed Bret Chants” sort of took off, which is hilarious. Jericho says that he is so excited that Shawn (Damien, of course) is with them tonight. He tells Shawn that he let himself go. He says that he’s a big, ugly fish with a beard. Shawn then retorted by apologizing that Chris didn’t pay the light bill on his jacket. His jacket wasn’t lit up.
Shawn (Sandow) told Bret that it was because of him that Bret wanted to be a wrestler. He told him that he was his son’s favorite wrestler. He says that after tonight, the world would be talking about the Ottawa screwjob. Sandow gets into Bret’s face and then meets a punch that levels him. Bret then puts the Sharpshooter onto Damien. He celebrates with Jericho to close out the show.
Mitch’s Final Thoughts:
This was one of the better Main Events that I’ve reviewed. The show just felt simpler to process. There’s only an hour to digest, so simple is good. I don’t like it when it feels like there’s way too much crammed into the broadcast.
The opening match was great, but much of that was thanks to the crowd. If they did that same match in front of a dead crowd it wouldn’t have worked. Sheamus and Del Rio benefited for sure. Sheamus is looking strong going into the Intercontinental battle royal at battleground. I’m glad he’s getting to defend his U.S. Championship regularly. I don’t see him winning the IC title at Battleground, but he’ll hit some dudes real stiff in the match and that’s always fun.
The women’s match was okay considering Naomi and Natalya didn’t actually wrestle in the match. The Bella/McMahon story continues as does the Cameron/Natalya story. Both are acceptable to me, so I’m okay with it all.
The Highlight Reel was main event. I was anticipating a Wyatt run-in of some sorts, but that never happened. As much as it saddens me to see Damien do these comedy bits, I think he’s highly entertaining in them all. Tonight was funny. I really hope it leads to something more meaningful for him. I can dream, right?
That’s another show in the books. Let me know what you thought of everything tonight. Is anybody watching that’s taking advantage of the free preview week of the WWE Network? Comment below with your thoughts and opinions and also remember follow me on twitter @MitchNickelson .