This week’s show came from Manchester – a taping that I was lucky enough to be at – showcasing some more pretty terrible Divas action for the third week running and one of the most bizarre 6-man tag combinations we’ve seen in a while that produced a really fun match.
Cameron and Naomi come out to start off the show. Naomi has wrestled the last two weeks on the show and it has, quite frankly, been fairly car-crash. Tonight she and Cameron are teaming up against Alicia Fox and Aksana so, with this bottom of the barrel Divas, this always had potential to be pretty bad.
Naomi vs. Alicia Fox
Tom Phillips clearly wasn’t deemed worthy enough to make the trip to Europe for the sake of calling two matches on internet TV and has NXT tapings to call back in Florida so, tonight we have the infinitely more experience Josh Matthews alongside Alex Riley. Naomi and Alicia start off in the ring and lock up until Fox takes Naomi to the mat with a headlock. Funny watching this live and then on TV: we’d just seen Wade Barrett beat Damien Sandow in the dark match which got over huge but when this match came out next you could hear a pin drop. Josh Matthews literally has nothing to say of interest and so just fills dead air with, “we’re nearly two weeks away from Survivor Series” which he just leaves hanging until Riley can think of something else to say.
Naomi whips Fox who reverses it. As Naomi hits the ropes she does a cat like controlled flip over the ropes so that she is stood on the apron facing the charging Fox. She then kicks her in the head, getting her leg up really high. It actually looked really fake but was a cool little move. Back in the ring, Naomi runs the ropes and hits Fox with a really mean looking clothesline which she sells but taking a flip bump and then crawling for a tag to get herself out of there.
Aksana comes in and takes a hurricanrana that looked like she just lands on the back of her head really horribly. Naomi was fine here but Aksana is clearly limited. Cameron tags in and goes to work on Aksana, quick tagging Naomi back in and hitting a double suplex on Aksana. They then doing a very cool stereo splits at the ropes, pulling the top rope down so that the now charging Alicia Fox topples over the top and down on to the arena floor. Fox nearly didn’t make it by momentum alone and so had to push off the apron using her hand. Again, this all looked badly fake but the Funkadactyls are a fun tag team.
As the celebrate, Aksana picks up Naomi, the legal woman, from behind and scoop slams her, getting a two count for her troubles. She then picks her up for a side slam and does her weird cat crawl that she now does around Naomi who is selling the move. Cue: ironic “this is awesome” chants from the crowd. Naomi is then taken to Aksana’s corner where she stomps on her and tags in Fox again who works over her left arm.
Riley on commentary says that Aksana was discovered by John Lauranitus in a “fashion catalogue”. If that’s the locker room code for porn, it’s not fooling anyone.
This short match finishes when Naomi, who has been the babyface in peril, gets the hot tag for Cameron who runs wild on Fox. Cameron goes for a hurricanrana on Fox and either Fox isn’t expecting it or Cameron doesn’t get it all but it looks hideous. Aksana charges into match the save and gets shoved over (yes, shoved over) by Naomi and rolled outside the ring so that Cameron can hit the DDT on Fox for the pin.
This looked pretty awful live and was even worse on TV. Given that they can cut and edit in post production how is that possible? Mind boggling.
Winner: Cameron and Naomi via pinfall (4:02)
The Raw Rebound is next – we get both handicap matches and the whole of the Del Rio arm bar spot through the chair on Cena with the Big E Langston save.
Out next on Superstars, for what I think has to be one of the most strange 6-man tags I have ever seen, is The Great Khali (who was roundly hated in Manchester, mainly because people felt that he wasted our time) with The Usos. Their opponents were The Miz and The Prime Time Players. Just weird. Babyfaces galore and Miz did the Millions of Dollars dance. It was all just a bit too wacky and bizarre and felt like these were just whoever was left in the locker room on the night.
The Great Khali & The Usos vs. The Miz & The Prime Time Players
Miz and Jey start off in the ring and lock up. Jey puts Miz in a side headlock and then out of an Irish Whip, Jey shoulder tackles Miz and uses a sunset flip for a quick pin attempt for a near fall. Miz and Jey then trade near falls in a nice chain and this match is all about entertainment and pace as they crank the crowd up for the Raw taping next. Miz then uses double leg take down but Jey kicks Miz away and they go to their corners for tags
Khali and O’Neil tag in and there’s a short pause where they size each other up. It can’t be long before Titus gets a main event push. I see him holding a briefcase next year, perhaps. They lock up and Titus tries to hit Khali with chops. What an idiot. You know that Khali is going to kill you if you do that. So, of course, Khali puts Titus in the corner and he chops Titus several times. Live this looked but, more importantly, sounded awful. Young comes in but Khali stands rooted to the middle of the ring and hits him with a clothesline and chops. I think Khali would be an awesome squash player, though I’m guessing he’d lack the coordination to hold a racket and follow a small ball. Miz comes in and he tries to give Khali a forearm but it has no effect. Khali then chops Miz who is sent to the floor as we go to a break. I have never written ‘chop’ so many times in one paragraph…
After the commercials, Khali hits a clothesline on Miz and Jimmy tags in, punching Miz. Jimmy tries to send Miz into the turnbuckles but Miz stops him and reverses putting him in a side headlock. Young tags in and they hit a double suplex on Jimmy and Young goes for the pin, getting a two count. Young uses the rest hold – a side headlock. Jey tags in and Darren hits him with forearm. O’Neil tags in and he catches Jey with a fall-away slam posturing to the crowd who love the barking. Miz tags back in and boots Jey and goes for a pin but only gets a near fall. Jey tries to power out of another rest hold (yep, the Superstars go-to move – the rear chin lock) but Miz keeps Jey from making the tag until Jey slides under with a sunset flip for another near fall.
Titus tags and Irish whips Jey and splashes him in the corner. O’Neil then uses head butts to the chest but he misses a charge into the corner. Jimmy and Young then tag in and Jimmy hits Darren with a clotheslines and a savate kick. Jimmy then power bombs Young and uses the running butt splash (the Stinkface tribute that they always do) into the corner and he gets a near fall. Miz breaks up the cover but Khali takes care of Miz.
The finish sees Titus knock Khali off the apron and while Jimmy takes care of O’Neil and Young tries for the gutbuster, Jimmy escapes and he hits a super kick. Jey tags in and he lands the Superfly Splash for the three count. This was a fun match – I really so badly wish Superstars had 6-man tag matches every week.
Winner: The Great Khali & The Usos via pinfall (7:47)
This was another fun WWE Superstars, particularly due to the 6-man tag match. The girls continue to nearly kill themselves for my entertainment on a weekly basis. Though, I’m not sure this is their intention.
The show closes out with the entire Wyatt, Shield, Punk and Bryan segment which, live, got an absolutely nuclear reaction.
– By James Cox