29th Sep2020

‘WWE Clash of Champions 2020: Gold Rush’ PPV Review

by Nathan Favel

Welcome to this review of WWE’s Clash Of Champions 2020 review, right here on Nerdly. I’m Nathan Favel and we’ve got the big Anaoi family war beginning in earnest on this card, as well as Marco Polo trying to find himself in the pool. Me…Me! We’ve got a few changes to the card, mainly with Nikki Cross, Nia Jax and Shayna Bazler all being barred from competition due to interaction with folks who have had COVID-19 (allegedly). The American government lost John F. Kennedy’s brain (spring cleaning is a bitch) and Clash Of Champions 2020 is here…so kill it Mufasa! You gotta kill it! Simba…shake that ass!

Match #1: Cesaro & Shinsuke Nakamura def. Lucha House Party – WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Lucha House Party may have resolved their leadership questions, but it wasn’t enough to defeat Cesaro & Shinsuke Nakamura for the SmackDown Tag Team Titles on the WWE Clash of Champions Kickoff. Cesaro & Nakamura isolated Lince Dorado early, keeping him grounded and unable to execute high-risk maneuvers. Dorado eventually squirmed out of Cesaro’s grasp to tag in Kalisto, who immediately quickened the pace and hit a huge DDT to Cesaro on the outside thanks to Dorado’s help. Kalisto & Dorado were firing on all cylinders, but Cesaro countered Kalisto’s Salida del Sol. Moments later, he combined with Nakamura for the Swing into the Kinshasa to retain the championship.

My Opinion: 3.6 out of 5 – I thought this was a very spirited slug-fest that always had a little extra bang for your buck, which is fitting for a major event like Clash Of Champions. The champions were always on top of everything, both offensively and defensively. Jake And The Fat-Man was a chubby-chaser’s delight and this match was a strong way to open the card.

Match #2: Sami Zayn def. Jeff Hardy and AJ Styles – Ladder Match For The WWE Intercontinental Title

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

The dust has settled in the Intercontinental Title debate, and Sami Zayn is the rightful champion after winning a jaw-dropping Triple Threat Winner Take All Ladder Match against Jeff Hardy and AJ Styles. The Great Liberator used cunning to prevail, though all three competitors dished out plenty of pain in one of the most brutal and bizarre Ladder Matches in history. Hardy once again unleashed his inner daredevil, authoring another indelible Ladder Match moment when he delivered a massive Swanton Bomb from the top of a ladder to Zayn, who was laid across another ladder. But Zayn’s use of handcuffs, rather than a spectacular maneuver, played a decisive role. Tethering Jeff’s pierced earlobe to one ladder with one pair of cuffs and Styles’ wrist to a ladder support with another pair, Zayn ensured no one could stop him from scaling above the ring and pulling down his and Jeff’s titles for the amazing victory.

My Opinion: 5 out of 5 – Whoo boy! For the action, this had some of the biggest risks ever taken in a wrestling match. If you don’t like heights, you might get pissy-pants from watching these guys braving the treacherous ladders and plummeting from them like a torpedo to its target…or a needle-nosed geek to the Playboys in the back of the shop. Everyone here was at their very best and didn’t let-up at any point. Not only was the action gripping, but it was smart and intricate as well. This was the best Triple Threat match AJ Styles has been in since the AJ Styles/Samoa Joe/Christopher Daniels rivalry (specifically the best Triple Threat since the 2009 TNA Turning Point bout). This was a brilliant spectacle and a fantastic prize fight.

Match #3: Asuka def. Zelina Vega – Raw Women’s Championship Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Zelina Vega was not, in fact, ready for Asuka. The Empress of Tomorrow turned aside Vega’s challenge for the Raw Women’s Title, but not before Vega impressed in her biggest challenge to date. Vega appeared to injure Asuka’s left arm early, then deftly targeted the damaged limb, smashing it into the steel steps. La Muñeca created a surprising situation, dissecting the much more experienced champion by countering an Asuka Lock attempt into an armbar and applying a rope-assisted crucifix. However, one mistake cost Vega dearly. Asuka countered out of her pin attempt into the Asuka Lock, leaving Vega with no choice but to tap. Vega seemingly won Asuka’s respect, but she struck her with a deceitful blow after the bell after bowing to the champion. Vega immediately retreated and caught an earful from Asuka after the champion got back to her feet.

My Opinion: 3.5 out of 5 – This turned out very nicely, considering it went a bit short. Fortunately, this match had the oomph to get out from the barrier that being a short match presents, so at least the wrestling had the blood pumpin’ in its veins. Asuka won and should have, but Vega was also taken seriously as a challenger. Hallalooyer! The right person won a good match.

Match #4: Bobby Lashley def. Apollo Crews – WWE United States Championship Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Business remains good for Bobby Lashley and company, as The All Mighty defeated Apollo Crews to retain the United States Title for The Hurt Business. MVP showered Crews with vitriolic trash talk at ringside throughout Lashley’s beatdown, though Crews gave Lashley all he could handle, turning the tide after sending the titleholder into the ring post before hitting a powerslam-standing moonsault combination. Lashley responded with his own renowned strength, though, delivering a huge superplex and dropping Crews with a massive chokeslam before forcing him to tap out with the Full Nelson.

My Opinion: 3.3 out of 5 – Like the last match, this went short, but it was good, meaty action from bell to bell. It’s a shame these matches haven’t been better received, considering their styles are identical to each other, but at least they are of a certain quality. Nothing in here was the best they’ve ever done, but it was all big and bold, like the taste of elephant jizz on a summer day. Lashley winning is great for him, but Crews losing just feels like dropping him off of a cliff at this point in his career. I hope the goal of this is to get the strap back on Crews, because Lashley doesn’t need a mid-card belt anymore.

Match #5: The Street Profits def. Andrade & Angel Garza – WWE Raw Tag Team Championship Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

The Street Profits are still lifting their red cups as Raw Tag Team Champions, but not without some controversy following their victory over Andrade & Angel Garza. After appearing to be on shaky ground as a duo for months, Andrade & Garza look better than ever without the services of Zelina Vega, showcasing seamless teamwork early and likely shocking the champions as much as they stunned the WWE Universe. Garza nearly secured the titles after executing a top-rope Spanish Fly, but Montez Ford narrowly kicked out. Ford hit a step-up enzuigiri on Andrade before tagging in Angelo Dawkins, who hit a huge spinebuster for the win, though Andrade appeared to kick out before the official’s count of three.

My Opinion: 3.6 out of 5 – This turned out very well, considering that this followed the trend of the previous two matches in that it went short. The champions winning was the way it should be, but the challengers were taken seriously in a way that was not as true before. Of all the matches these two teams have had, this was the most memorable, because of the intensity with which it was competed. Angel looked like he got injured at the end and I hope he is okay. Do you believe in magic…in a young girl’s heart? Well, you’re a freakin’ idiot! You know who’s not a freakin’ idiot? …you, for watching this match! So…go watch the match, you freakin’ idiot! …young girl’s heart my ass!

Match #6: Asuka def. Bayley – Champion vs. Champion (Disqualification)

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

With Nikki Cross not medically cleared to compete against Bayley as scheduled, “The Role Model” instead offered up a SmackDown Women’s Title opportunity for any challenger. She likely wasn’t expecting Raw Women’s Champion Asuka to answer the call. The less-than-100-percent Asuka, who retained her title earlier in the night after defeating Zelina Vega, seemed to catch “The Role Model” by surprise and overwhelm her. Bayley was in dire straits after suffering a German suplex on the floor, but she struck Asuka with her now-trusty steel chair to get herself disqualified and keep the SmackDown Women’s Title. Bayley’s night was far from over, though. Former best friend Sasha Banks struck her with a steel chair and unloaded on her with a Kendo stick, achieving some payback for Bayley’s despicable assault earlier this month. However, the SmackDown Women’s Champion retreated before The Boss could continue to wield the steel chair against her.

My Opinion: 2.5 out of 5 – This was three minutes of “eat me”…”EAT ME RAW!”…”MONDAY NIGHT RAW!”

Match #7: Drew McIntyre def. Randy Orton – Ambulance Match For The WWE World Championship

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

The ghosts of kicked skulls past came back to haunt Randy Orton and cost him a chance to win his 14th World Title against WWE Champion Drew McIntyre. Big Show, Christian, Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair — all victims of The Viper in recent months — left their mark in a barbaric Ambulance Match won by McIntyre. Orton looked for an early kick to the skull after hitting an elevated DDT, but he found his foot restrained by Big Show. The World’s Largest Athlete then slammed The Apex Predator through the announce table. McIntyre took advantage, but he later potentially injured his knee when a Claymore attempt missed the mark, instead ripping the ambulance’s driver-side door straight off its hinges. The hostilities spilled backstage where Orton was met by Christian, who emerged to pummel The Viper, again turning the tables in McIntyre’s favor. Orton and McIntyre later fought to the hood of the ambulance, where Orton savagely gouged the champion’s eye before dropping him on the windshield to shatter it. Both men scaled the top of the ambulance, where Orton found himself blasted by Sweet Chin Music from Michaels, who then tossed The Legend Killer off the top of the vehicle. Orton caught McIntyre with an RKO out of nowhere on the bare concrete and nearly shut the WWE Champion in the ambulance until Drew overpowered The Viper, hitting a Claymore and finishing him off with a dose of his own medicine — a kick to the skull. McIntyre packed Orton into the ambulance and closed the doors, and Flair was more than happy to hop in the driver’s seat to wheel Orton away, the debt for his sins having been paid handsomely.

My Opinion: 4 out of 5 – This was a great brawl that went all over the joint and made solid use of the recent Legend Killer angle. Having all the legends return to get their revenge on Randy worked well and made the match more notable than it might have been otherwise. The right guy won and that made this match worth the viewing.

Match #9: Roman Reigns def. Jey Uso – WWE Universal Championship Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Call him The Big Dog, call him the Universal Champion, and now, call him “The Chief.” That’s what Roman Reigns demands to be called, and after the shocking brutality he unleashed on his own cousin, Jey Uso, to retain the Universal Championship, who would argue otherwise? The highly personal family issue set the stage for an intense battle from the opening bell, with Reigns happy to engage in trash talk almost immediately. Jey quickly appeared overmatched, with any offense he mounted quickly stymied by The Big Dog. But Jey eventually quickened the pace, putting Reigns on his heels after hitting a pair of tope suicidas and a superkick to net a near-fall. He again came close to scoring one of the greatest upsets in WWE history with two more near-falls following a roll-up and his top-rope splash. But in kicking out after the splash, Reigns caught Jey with a low blow and later donned a smile, suggesting it was intentional. Reigns leveled his cousin with a Spear, resuming the verbal lashing and refusing to cease the beating until Jey acknowledged him as his “tribal chief” before hitting another Spear on his defiant cousin. Jey’s brother Jimmy emerged, pleading for his brother to let him throw in the towel, but a barely conscious Jey insisted otherwise. That was until Reigns proceeded to rain down lefts and rights with Jey unable to protect himself, practically forcing his brother to throw in the towel and forfeit the match. Disgusted by his cousin’s actions, Jimmy gave Reigns want he wanted, calling him “The Chief” after the bell. Paul Heyman crowned Reigns with the same lei Jey wore to the ring to complete the coronation.

My Opinion: 4.5 out of 5 – Great action merged with a magnificent storyline that saw Roman mercilessly slaughter a valiant Jey for over twenty minutes. For a match with tremendous suspense and brutal fighting, you can’t go wrong with this instant classic.

News of the Night:

  1. Drew Gulak beat R-Truth for the 24/7 Title and R-Truth won it back from him.
  2. The WWE Draft is coming back for two nights.
  3. Sasha Banks attacked Bayley.
  4. Jimmy Uso returned to throw in the towel for his brother, Jey Uso.
  5. Ric Flair, Shawn Michaels, Christian and The Big Show returned to attack Randy Orton and help Drew McIntyre retain the WWE World Title.

Final Verdict: 4.3/5

Three great matches and a slew of fine ones added together made for a strong show over-all.


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