This year’s Extreme Rules at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia was full of action as multiple championships were on the line.
We also saw The Undertaker return who joined hands with Roman Reigns to take down the team of Shane McMahon and Drew McIntyre in a No Holds Barred Match. As for the championships, the company delivered quite a few changes as four new champions were crowned, as well as the cash-in attempt by Money in the Bank holder Brock Lesnar.
The show was full of solid wrestling and (mostly) good booking decisions, and it’s safe to say that the company delivered this time.
So we take a look at five things we learned from last night’s PPV in this list. Some are good, some not so much.
1. The Intercontinental Title Deserves Better Than The Kickoff Show
Why the IC Title was on the kickoff show is beyond me.
The Intercontinental Championship is back to being treated like a secondary unimportant title. Finn Balor, who is a solid wrestler and could work as a great champion, was barely offered any spots for defending the title and we hardly got anything memorable to see from his title run.
One defence that took place last night, where Shinsuke Nakamura defeated Balor ON THE KICKOFF SHOW. Why is this prestigious title on the Kickoff show? The title is now on the same level as the Cruiserweight Championship, which has never seen the limelight.
Maybe things will change for the better with Nakamura as the new champ, but there’s really no guarantee to that.
2. WWE Picked A Weird Match To Open
The first match of the Extreme Rules PPV was the No Holds Barred tag team match between the teams of The Undertaker & Romans Reigns going against Shane McMahon and Drew McIntyre.
The Undertaker returning to the ring in 2019 is kinda a big deal sure, but why is it the opening match? They could have pushed it down a bit since it was one of the main highlights of the show. They could have added the Intercontinental Championship title match between Finn Balor and Shinsuke Nakamura as the opening act and it would have been fine.
The way the matches are set and the kind of matches that are made is sometimes really boggling as we would see next.
3. WWE Doesn’t Know How To Keep Match Stipulations Concise
Reading what the main event of the Extreme Rules PPV is going to demand a look for at least more than 10 seconds to be completely understood.
The match is called a ‘Last Chance Winners Take All Extreme Rules mixed tag team match for both the WWE Universal Championship and WWE Raw Women’s Championship. Yup, that’s a mouthful.
Seth Rollins and Baron Corbin are supposed to fight each other because they are the male superstars, and Becky Lynch and Lacey Evans fight because they are the females. Since there are no DQs, the males can attack the female wrestlers and so on. The mixed tag team rules don’t apply.
Towards the end of the match we saw Baron Corbin take out Becky Lynch – but why didn’t he do that before and have Evans pin her while he keeps Rollins busy? Because… WWE doesn’t work with logic.
And speaking of the Corbin-Lynch layout…
4. Baron Corbin Hitting Becky Lynch Was A Great Heel Move
During the main event mixed tag team match, Baron Corbin, caught up to Rollins’ curb stomp and powerbombed him instead. Following a Deep Six with a pin until Lynch broke it up. Lynch then went ahead and threw Evans out of the ring, to which Corbin shockingly picked her up and hit her with the End of Days.
This move would turn out to be unfavourable for him as the now-enraged Rollins beat the hell out of Corbin with first a kendo stick, and then a steel chair. Rollins would then pin Balor after hitting the Stomp thrice.
The move from Corbin, however, solidified him as a great heel. It gives us an actual reason to hate him this time – we’re not hating the character because he looks annoying or talks annoying. We are hating him because the character is genuinely a bad guy and doesn’t shy away from ballsy moves like these. Also props to Lynch for eating the move like a champ.
5. It’s Probably Time To Say Goodbye To The Universal Championship
We are most likely not going to see the Universal Championship for a while now. And when we do, it would be because His Grace Brock Lesnar decided to work.
Because you see, after the main event, Lesnar cashed in his Money in the Bank contract to defeat Seth Rollins for the Universal Championship.
Rollins was just done with finishing Baron with kendo sticks and steel chairs on the ring, but he was unable to defend himself against The Beast. Because The Beast is the best of the best, and way ahead of the company’s poster boy. That’s what I took from the finish.
It was not a good look for Rollins, and with Lesnar being champ now everything is going to go back to how it was – unless Paul Heyman has something up his sleeve with him running Raw now. He could have a different strategy and maybe Lesnar shows up more? We’ll have to wait and see.
You can find me on Twitter @TheRay_28. Thanks for reading.