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Reviewing WWE Summerslam

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SummerSlam 2015

Sunday night saw the twenty eighth Summerslam take place from the Barclay’s Center in New York city. Following on from the previous night’s awesome NXT Takeover: Brooklyn special (Which you can get my thoughts on here) expectations for this event from fans were at a high. That's maybe where fans need to realize the philosophy of NXT and the main WWE product are totally different. You have one that is based solely around the wrestling aspect in NXT, and one based more around the entertainment aspect, character progression, and story in WWE. Yes they are the same company but they have two very different core audiences. So if you went into Summerslam expecting it to match NXT, the quite frankly it's no wonder you may have felt disappointed. In this piece I'm going to look at the good, the bad, the questionable moments, and address the controversial topic that was the ending of the match between Brock Lesnar and Undertaker. This time around you have the choice of either reading my ramblings, or for the first time ever you can stream my thoughts through my Soundcloud page, or even download it to listen at your leisure on your drive to or from work, while you work out, or whenever else you want. I really encourage feedback from you all about this aspect of the blogs as if audio works for you I am happy to expand into audio and written content on a permanent basis. So if you want to listen please use the Soundcloud embedded player below to stream or download it. Or continue to scroll down and start reading my thoughts on Summerslam 2015.

As opposed to the layout of my audio blog though I'm going to do this differently and start off by looking at what I would consider the good moments of the show, as opposed to going through each match. So in general I thought Summerslam as a show was actually pretty solid. I had read some comments of Facebook and Twitter earlier that morning and the general vibe was it was an awful show with a rubbish ending. I felt there weren't any particularly bad matches on the card, and I thought everyone tried their best on the night to make the show as good as possible. I particularly enjoyed the Ziggler and Rusev match, loved the entrance and celebration of New Day after they won the Tag Team Championship, thought the title for title match between Cena and Rollins was a great match in which Seth showed what a great talent he really is while Cena continued to defy his critics with another great performance, and the main event match itself was excellent for me from start to finish as it had that feel like it was almost a shoot at times with how much both Undertaker and Lesnar basically went for it.

Sadly there were some bad moments for the show that I thought kind of let it down a little. One of those was the fact that the Intercontinental Championship match between Miz, Ryback, and Big Show felt very flat and had that feel that none of the men involved could come up with anything imaginative we haven't seen before, making it feel like the talent were only able to think about how best to work in their signature moves as opposed to producing anything entertaining. I also felt that the Divas match suffered from where it was on the card and perhaps the crowd were not into it so much after the emotional roller-coaster that was Seth Rollins and John Cena. I think had Kevin Owens and Cesaro been the match to follow this then maybe the crowd wouldn't have seemed so flat, but that isn't the Divas fault and is more about WWE maybe structuring the card in a better way in the future. I know they are only very minimal things to find bad, but there were some questionable moments about the show I feel I need to bring up too.

For those who might not understand what I mean exactly by "questionable moments", I'm referring to segments where you wonder why someone chose to do something, or why the match ended a certain way. There were two questionable moments that really stood out for me during the night. The first one was during the Bray Wyatt & Luke Harper versus Roman Reigns & Dean Ambrose match. Am I the only one who wondered exactly what was going to happen during the match as toward the end when Reigns and Ambrose kept hitting moves to look like they would end the match they both took their time in doing anything like making a pin and almost had a look like they were plotting something? Maybe it was intentional but it sure as heck seemed pointless to me. And the other moment was the fact Jon Stewart was the reason John Cena lost to Seth Rollins. What possible pay off could there be here, other than the obvious media buzz it created? Unless Cena and Stewart are going to have some kind of match down the line I fail to see the benefits of this. Great, it got some media exposure for WWE but it just doesn't seem to work for me. Stewart took an AA on Raw, but if that's seriously all that comes out of it then it just seems wasted and Seth may as well have gone over clean.

And then we come on to the controversial ending to the main event between Brock Lesnar and Undertaker. While most people have been quite critical of the way that match ended I actually liked the ending. My biggest problem with it though is I just didn’t think it was executed properly. What I mean by that is firstly the time keeper has never EVER rung the bell without the referee's call. How many times have we seen someone tap out when the referee is down in the past and no one ever just rings the bell? So many over the years so why decide to do it now? Also traditionally, if a decision is reversed by the referee then the ring announcer would get on the mic and explain exactly what is happening. In this situation that didn’t happen which left the live crowd and viewers at home in a state of confusion. So when Undertaker hit Lesnar with the low blow you could ask why the bell wasn't rung again by the time keeper? And then add to that the referee then decides to check the submission on Lesnar before calling for the bell, no one really has a clue what just happened. We didn't even see Undertaker tap out until the replay showed it so in real time the whole situation just seemed messed up. The plan was a good one for the end but the execution was lacking and that's what perhaps caused some people to sour on the match.

So my final thoughts to sum this up are really that in reality Summerslam was actually a pretty good show from top to bottom. I thought all the matches were well worked and the show itself was entertaining to watch. Did it have it's questionable moments that made it hard to watch at times?Of course it did. But what WWE show is completely flawless from start to finish? And at the end of it all, it's the moments where we see flaws that pretty much keep us all tuning in each week. If you didn't enjoy Summerslam then my advice to you would be to go back and watch the show again to maybe appreciate it more the second time around. Put NXT Takeover out of your mind and just watch the action unfold and maybe you will see exactly what made Summerslam a really good show.

If you have enjoyed this blog, and any of my other work, then please give me a follow on Twitter if that's your scene by following @jamie_welton, or please give my Facebook page a like for all my latest blogs and thoughts on the world of WWE and Wrestling. You can now also check out my interviews on Soundcloud.

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