06th Oct2018

‘WWE Super Show-Down 2018′ PPV Results & Review

by Phil Wheat

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Surprise, surprise! A WWE pay per view that, thanks to eminating from Melbourne, Austraila, the UK got at a sensible hour (10am BST fact fans!). Which means it’s Editor Phil who’s bringing you this review and recap of the show… Or should that be Show-Down?!

Match #1: SmackDown Tag Team Champions The New Day def. The Bar

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

In the journey to SmackDown tag team supremacy, The Bar have fought hard to pick up where their last Tag Team Title reign ended. Yet, despite having brought their best effort to Australia’s MCG with another action-packed chapter in the battle for the blue brand’s Tag Team Championship, the narrative remains under the direction of the five-time champions, The New Day. The collision between SmackDown’s premier tandems was electric, as 70,309 in attendance watched Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods pull out all the stops to thwart Sheamus & Cesaro from cutting short their latest title (and Five-Timers Club) reign. However, it was The Bar’s combination of brute strength and sheer force that arguably made this The New Day’s toughest challenge yet. At one point, both Kingston and Woods flew outside the ring, only for Cesaro and Sheamus to catch them in mid-air and slam them into the turnbuckle. However, The Power of Positivity was strong in the Melbourne air, as the WWE Universe in attendance – along with Big E at ringside – clamored for their resurgence.

In the bout’s closing moments, Kofi Kingston picked up a boost of momentum, connecting Sheamus with a Trouble In Paradise outside the ring and breaking up Cesaro’s rope-assisted pinfall attempt on Woods. This opened the door for Woods to drop The Swiss Cyborg with a Backstabber, and for Kingston to follow up with a top-rope drop onto Cesaro for the win.

My take: There’s a reason the teaming of New Day’s Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods are nicknamed “Speed Force” – they were fast, very fast. With high flying, quick manuevres that looked like the duo were set for just as quick a win. But thankfully Shaemus and Cesaro eventually got a look in wearing down Kofi then Xavier. Unfortunately that wasn’t enough to steal a win – New Day launched a fantastic combo of Back Stabber and Double-Foot Stomp from the top rope to secure the win and keep the Championship. A great start to the PPV that got the audience hyped up for what was to come.

Match #2: Charlotte Flair def. SmackDown Women’s Champion Becky Lynch via DQ

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

After months of blistering verbal battles, blindside attacks and boiling animosity, SmackDown Women’s Champion Becky Lynch defended her title against Charlotte Flair in a massive confrontation at WWE Super Show-Down … but it wouldn’t finish without controversy.Both Superstars started the match firing right out of the gate, exchanging a series of forceful strikes until Lynch ultimately took control after dropping The Queen onto the unforgiving outside floor. From there, The Irish Lass Kicker looked to ground Flair with a smothering ground-and-pound attack that included a Fujiwara Armbar which got the WWE Universe believing Becky could get Charlotte to tap.

Refusing to quit, Flair battled back at every opportunity, managing to counter several of Lynch’s attacks and work in an offense that, although gritty, was undeniably effective. With both Superstars now battered, another series of brutal exchanges ensued, with Lynch managing to survive both a Spear and Boston Crab from The Queen. Charlotte’s offense was mounting, however, and it prompted Becky to just opt to and leave, grabbing her SmackDown Women’s Title and trying to hightail it. The Queen wouldn’t allow it, though, and threw Becky, her title still in her hand, back into the ring. Hitting another Spear and locking Becky in the Figure-Eight Leg Lock, it appeared as if Flair was mere seconds away from becoming the new SmackDown Women’s Champion. However, the ever-resourceful Lynch was able to grab the title while locked in the submission hold and began pelting Flair with it, prompting the official to call for a disqualification.

Due to the disqualification, Charlotte had won the match, but not the championship. Furious, she rushed up the ramp to attack The Irish Lass Kicker and started whaling on her. But Lynch was able to take advantage of Charlotte’s rage and frustration, soon getting the upper hand on the outside and ultimately delivering a Bexploder to her former best friend. Becky, finally, was able to depart with her title, but one thing was clear: Flair may have been left downed Down Under, but this rivalry is certainly far from over.

My take: If there’s one thing I don’t like about Charlotte and Becki are those hair extensions. Yes, I know, something of a sexist comment. But hear me out – this match strted with some fantastic brawling between the two women… only the impact was lost in the masses and masses of hair! Otherwise this was another great match between two women who know what it takes to put on a good show. Though it seems WWE are still trying to turn Becki heel, giving her a controversial win via DQ… The audience down under, like back in the US, were still behind Becki however. It’s also interesting to note that The Marine 6 is due out next month – in which Becki plays the villain. Hmmmmm…. Hell turn as movie advertising? Probably.

Match #3: John Cena & Bobby Lashley def. Kevin Owens & Elias

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

A leaner and meaner John Cena returned to action at WWE Super Show-Down to successfully team with Bobby Lashley and silence the egotistical pairing of Kevin Owens & Elias. Sporting a chiseled physique forged in China while working with Jackie Chan’s training team for the upcoming action film “Project X,” The Cenation Leader came to the Melbourne Cricket Ground ready for a fight. However, the devious Owens and the malicious songsmith employed divide-and-conquer tactics to keep Lashley isolated in the early goings, preventing the 16-time World Champion from joining the fray and putting Lashley at a rare disadvantage. When the powerhouse finally made that critical tag, however, the complexion of the bout changed completely. Hitting Elias with shoulder tackles and a Five-Knuckle Shuffle, Cena leveled The Living Truth with an Attitude Adjustment … but he wasn’t finished there. Utilizing his rarely-seen “Sixth Move of Doom,” Cena sealed the victory with a move known as the Lightning Fist.

My take: A switch from the blue brand to the red meant a switch in atmosphere and pacing as the Super Show-Down became anything but Super… It says a lot the highlight of this match was actually Elias playing AC/DC’s Thunderstruck BEFORE the match kicked off.

Match 4: The IIconics def. Asuka & Naomi

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

Stepping into familiar territory, The IIconics delivered quite the statement as they defeated former SmackDown and NXT Women’s Champions in Naomi and Asuka. But the native Australians’ victory didn’t come easy. The Empress of Tomorrow and The Glow boosted their newly forged friendship by putting the nefarious duo through quite the litmus test. For much of the bout, Asuka & Naomi unloaded an arsenal of hard-hitting maneuvers – including their signature Missile Dropkick and Split Legged Moonsault, respectively – making victory for Kay & Royce look very unlikely. But then Kay pulled down Naomi face-first into the ring apron, then tossed Asuka into the outside ring barrier. This allowed Royce to keep The Glow down for the three count, and give the pair an IIconic hometown win.

My take: Predictably the Aussies won on their own turf. And that’s about all you need to know about this dull match. Its really felt like Naomi and Asuka were only in this match to give them some PPV residuals.

Match #5: WWE Champion AJ Styles def. Samoa Joe

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

With matters as personal as they could be, AJ Styles and Samoa Joe both entered the Melbourne Cricket Ground with two thoughts in mind: Inflicting pain on the other and leaving as WWE Champion. Both Superstars would accomplish the first, but it was The Phenomenal One who ultimately walked out of the MCG with his thirst for retaliation quenched and the WWE Title still around his waist. Chaos ruled early and often in this “No Disqualification, No Count Out, There Must be a Winner” contest. Determined to get even with The Samoan Submission Machine after he invaded the Styles family home several weeks ago, the champion wasted no time in unloading a relentless assault on his bitter rival, literally sprinting down the aisleway to begin his assault. The early stages of the match saw a little bit of everything, including an onslaught from Joe that included him chucking Styles over the announce table, then nailing the champion with an awe-inspiring dive that sent AJ reeling into the barricade.

Styles would fight back with a tenacious offensive rampage that, at times, managed to knock the monstrous Joe off his feet. The Samoan Submission Machine would continue to persist, though, weathering Styles’ attacks and continually grounding the WWE Champion with a series of high=-impact maneuvers. Joe tried taking the match to the next level when he brought a steel chair into the proceedings, but Styles quickly changed the temperature of the contest by dropkicking the chair right into the challenger’s face. From there, AJ used the chair to his advantage, taking out his frustrations on Joe with several cathartic chair strikes. Samoa Joe countered Styles’ attack with a Yurinagi right onto the seat of the chair, then brought a table into the ring. That plan ultimately backfired, though, as The Phenomenal One managed to viciously slam The Samoan Submission Machine – and himself, in the process – through the table.

Styles’ desperate move did a real number on Samoa Joe’s knee, leaving the challenger in a visible amount of pain. Yet Joe, even after saying his knee had “popped,” wouldn’t allow the official to stop the bout. AJ would proceed with an attack on the downed Joe that was clearly in honor of his family. He refused to let up on his adversary’s knee, doing everything from locking in a Calf Crusher to connecting with a 450 Splash that was targeted specifically for the injured joint. Styles closed in to finish Joe off, but when he went for what looked like the clinching Phenomenal Forearm, The Samoan Submission Machine countered with a Coquina Clutch and an unbelievable overhead throw. The two battle-weary Superstars continued to go back and forth with an amazing exchange of counters until The Phenomenal One managed to lock in another Calf Crusher. Samoa Joe fended off the pain for as long as he could, but the excruciating agony proved too much, and he finally had to tap out.

My take: So all that storytelling, with Samoa Joe taunting, and terrifying AJ Styles’ family was to allow AJ to unleash a plethora of heel moves on Joe without ever looking like the bad guy. Instead it was “retribution” for Joe’s atagonising of Styles and his family.  However that doesn’t mean AJ and Joe didn’t put on something of a clinic – furthering their story and their feud in a brutal clash that left Joe with an “injured” knee and AJ visibily bleeding from the mouth! Thankfully this picked up the pace and the audience after two less than stellar matches.

Match #6: Ronda Rousey & The Bella Twins def. The Riott Squad

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

Before the action began in front of more than 70,000 inside the Melbourne Cricket Ground, there seemed to be some pointed discussion between The Rowdy One and Fearless Nikki as to who would begin the match. Nikki ultimately kicked things off and Rousey went to the corner. That’s also where the champion would remain until the final, decisive moments of the contest as Ruby Riott, Sarah Logan and Liv Morgan — who had unfinished business with Brie after the twin injured her two weeks earlier — relished the chance to brutalize The Bellas. When Nikki finally tagged in Rousey, The Baddest Woman on the Planet was relentless, tossing around The Riott Squad as if they were rag dolls. Dragging Logan and Morgan to the center of the ring, The Rowdy One made both women submit to a damaging duet of simultaneous Armbars — a feat we’ve never seen before from Rousey (or anyone, for that matter).

My take: Were the WWE actually playing up to the recent comments that the returning Bellas were trying to take the spotlight from the current women’s roster? It seemed that way with this match -  a match that was decidely average apart from two highlights: a spot from Brie Bella (yes, Brie) who smartly grabbed Liv Morgan’s blue-stained tongue to stop what looked like the strat of Morgan’s to be revenge for the botched kicks on Raw; and THAT finishing move from Ronda Rousey! Who’s ever seen a double armbar on WWE before? Not me that’s for sure. A gimmick move yes, but one that sold Rousey as something different from the rest of the women in the WWE.

Match #7: Buddy Murphy def. Cedric Alexander to win the WWE Cruiserweight Championship

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

Murphy was assuredly mindful of the stakes heading into his WWE Cruiserweight Title Match against the fighting champion; and the bellowing “Let’s Go Buddy” chants that clamored throughout the MCG was added proof of that. Alexander matched that energy with sheer will and resilience to further evince his position as The Soul of 205 Live, but The Juggernaut, incensed with a flaring hunger for the title, wanted it more on this night.

The challenger opened the match swinging for the fences with high-impact maneuvers, including a flying Somersault to Alexander outside the ring, followed soon after with a Diving Double Knee Attack. Yet as Murphy tried to keep Alexander on the defensive, the resilient champion managed to outlast The Juggernaut’s hard-hitting offense with his own set of strikes and high-risk attacks. The rivals continued engaging in a tense back-and-forth until Alexander connected with a Spanish Fly that led to a series of near-falls, all of which sent the hometown crowd to the edge of their collective seats.

Victory seemed certain for Alexander after he hit the Lumbar Check. However, whatever could wrong at that moment, did. Murphy managed to kick out and soon after delivered Murphy’s Law for the three count. More than 70,000 strong in the MCG watched The Age of Alexander come to an end, and Buddy Murphy become the new WWE Cruiserweight Champion.

My take: Nice to see the Cruiserweights given a spotlight on a big show rather than be relegated to the opening of the PPV. Of course that was because Murphy was another hometown hero – which also guaranteed he was set to pick up the win here too. But that predictability doesn’t mean this match was worth skipping as Cedric Alexander and Buddy Murphy not only showed just how good the cruiserweight division is, but also just how good these two men REALLY are – pulling off moves with extra flair to make them look even more remarkable than they are. This match reminded me very much of the cruiserweight heyday of Dean Malenko, Rey Mysterio and Ediie Guerrero. It really was that good.

Match #8: The Shield def. Braun Strowman, Drew McIntyre & Dolph Ziggler

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

After weeks of the two sides battling back and forth, The Shield collided with Braun Strowman, Drew McIntrye & Dolph Ziggler at WWE Super Show-Down in an unbelievable Six-Man Tag Team Match in the Land Down Under. There was no feeling-out process between the two teams as the action was already at maximum levels of intensity before the bell even rang. Once the match officially got underway, Strowman’s squadron quickly isolated Seth Rollins, and The Monster Among Men went for a top-rope splash onto the prone Architect below. Rollins managed to dodge the ring-rattling splash, however, allowing him to tag in Dean Ambrose and send the match into a new gear.

The crowd of 70,309 could practically feel the entire complexion of the contest change when Ambrose, while re-entering the ring, took a Roman Reigns Superman Punch intended for Drew McIntyre. The strike sent Ambrose hurtling back to the outside floor, and the questions concerning Ambrose’s allegiance to The Shield over the past several weeks immediately resurfaced. The timing could not have seemed any worse for that inadvertent strike. In the match’s pivotal moments, it even almost appeared that The Lunatic Fringe was cornering Reigns and Rollins alongside Strowman, Ziggler and McIntyre. But that wasn’t the case, and Ambrose rejoined his Shield brothers in clearing the ring of their opposition, much to the delight of the WWE Universe.

Braun Strowman made sure the battle was far from over, tackling virtually everyone in the match. But when The Monster Among Men charged toward Ambrose on the outside, intent on demolishing him, Reigns intercepted him, Spearing Strowman through the barricade. As Ambrose re-entered the ring, Rollins provided additional cover by taking out McIntyre. Ziggler dispatched The Architect, but the distraction gave Ambrose time to secure the victory for The Hounds of Justice, connecting with Dirty Deeds on The Showoff in what could only be described as an absolute melee at “The G.”

My take: Predictably the crowd were not behind Roman Reigns in the slightest, going silent as he took centre stage after Seth Rollins took a punishing beatdown from the team of Ziggler, McIntyre and Strowman. But that didn’t stop Reigns, who pulled off one of Super Show-Down’s biggest “holy s**t!” moments when he sideswiped Strowman out of nowhere and took him through the barriers at ringside. The ‘will he/won’t he betray The Shield?’ story of Dean Ambrose was developed further here too with Ambrose taking a punch from Reigns. We know that The Shield will eventually crumble once more, but do the WWE have to push it so early in their return?

Match #9: Daniel Bryan def. The Miz to win WWE Championship Match opportunity

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

For a long time, The Miz has boasted about doing whatever it takes to win in big situations. However, at WWE Super Show-Down it was Daniel Bryan who surprised him with a reality check. After their previous fights at WWE Hell in a Cell and SummerSlam ended with Miz capitalizing off his long-running strategy, The Awesome One wasted no time in trying to pick up a third consecutive victory, exploiting Bryan’s midsection with a barrage of brutal kicks. At one point, he even employed Bryan’s Running Knee to knock down The “Yes!” Man. However, in a shockingly unexpected turn of events, Bryan beat Miz at his own game. Reversing his foe’s Skull-Crushing Finale for an inside cradle, Bryan picked up a quick, yet nonetheless effective win to capture a WWE Title Match opportunity against AJ Styles.

My take: A disappointly average match for a rivalry that has been years in the making. There was nothing spectacular about this match in the slightest, save for the controversial “quick count” finish from the ref. Which means this feud is NOT over… Expect The Miz to cost Bryan the title match during the Crown Jewel PPV and the duo continue to feud until the blow-off at Wrestlemania 35. As predicted when Bryan announced his in-ring return!

Match #10: Triple H def. The Undertaker

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

After two spellbinding entrances from both The Phenom and The Cerebral Assassin, the two future WWE Hall of Famers squared off with Kane and Shawn Michaels in their respective corners. A bombshell was dropped before the match began, however, when it was announced that this Last Time Ever contest would also be No Disqualification (Triple H using his, well, authority to make that happen, no doubt). Triple H showed brashness from the start, attempting to play mind games with The Deadman every chance he got. As the match wore on, Michaels would interject himself into the contest while Kane, in turn, would keep HBK at bay. The intensity picked up as The Deadman and The Game battled ferociously throughout the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Michaels’ and Kane’s involvement also grew, until some Sweet Chin Music from HBK enabled Triple H to elbow-drop Kane through a ringside table.

With Kane down, The Undertaker essentially found himself on the wrong end of a 2-on-1 disadvantage. Though The Phenom managed to connect with the Tombstone Piledriver, Triple H was somehow able to kick out. This created massive frustration for The Deadman, who proceeded to drop the official because of it. He then began a brutal onslaught on Triple H with a steel chair, quickly prompting Michaels to plead that The Phenom cease once he wrapped the chair around Triple H’s head. Michaels’ pleas earned him a swift punch to the jaw, but also allowed Triple H to connect with a Pedigree. Yet, The Deadman refused to stay down. With both Superstars battered and weary, Triple H placed the chair around Undertaker’s neck and viciously dropped a knee across it. The Game went for a pin right off that savage act, but Kane slid the referee out of the ring before the three count. This led to Michaels handing his best friend a sledgehammer, which Triple H quickly used on Undertaker’s skull. Still, the ever-resilient Deadman fought back; he even locked Triple H in the Hell’s Gate, but with no referee on hand, Triple H managed to survive once more.

Michaels also made use of the sledgehammer to take out Kane. Though The Undertaker dispatched HBK over the top rope, he was unable to rid of The Icon for long. Michaels soon reappeared and hit The Phenom with several pinpointed Superkicks, including one that allowed Triple H to connect with the decisive Pedigree for the win. After years of unsuccessful attempts, a very emotional Triple H and Shawn Michaels were finally able to put down The Deadman. As The Undertaker slowly rose to his feet, it seemed as though he had accepted the means in which he went down in defeat. Both he and Kane raised Triple H and Michaels’ arms in victory, and 70,309 members of the WWE Universe in attendance raucously applauded as the four stood together in the center of the ring.

But after the fireworks had gone off in the MCG, the real fireworks began. At the drop of a dime, The Brothers of Destruction unloaded on Triple H and Michaels. After dropping The Game with a devastating Tombstone, Undertaker savagely Chokeslammed Michaels through the announcer’s table. After an already unbelievable night in Melbourne, Australia, it was clear to everyone who witnessed this turn of events that The Brothers of Destruction had truly lived up to their nickname.

My take: What can you say about a match between two over-the-hill wrestlers who insist on hogging the limelight from the rest of the roster? OK, so this may have been more for the Australian audience in attendance but still, this was 2 over-the-hill wrestlers, or “Legends” as the WWE like to call them, hogging the limelight of a PPV. Something we expect from Wrestlemania but something that looks likely to be the norm for huge overseas-set pay per views too.

Final Verdict: 2.5./5

Another average pay per view for the WWE, with an almost perfect ratio of good-to-bad matches giving this a middle of the road score from us. The only real plus point for this PPV (at least here in the UK) was the ability to watch it live at a sensible hour, rather than staying up overnight!

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