Air Date: 26/1/16
Kevin Owens vs. Jack Swagger
On paper this match looks like it could be incredible, C show ace Jack Swagger taking on a man who has had a great 2016 so far. Well these two got a lot of time and put on one hell of a match. Owens worked over Swagger to start the match and then we got some really great back and forth action, including a very cool looking spot where Swagger reversed the pop-up powerbomb into an ankle lock. There were some very good believable near falls that really made you think that maybe Swagger could pull out the win. Go out of your way to watch this match. Kevin Owens pins Swagger with a Pop-Up Powerbomb *** ¼
After a recap of The Rock’s return on RAW we go to the next match.
The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray and D-Von Dudley) vs. The Ascension (Konnor and Viktor)
Fine, basic match. Exactly what you would expect from your average Ascension match. Bubba pins Konnor with a 3D ** ½
Rusev and Lana are backstage with JoJo talking about his match with Ryback. Good, intense promo from Rusev who doesn’t normally get much promo time.
Recap of the opening promo from RAW, yawn.
Rusev (w/Lana) vs. Ryback
This was one hell of a fight between two absolute monsters. These guys were just beating the shit out of each other, Ryback pulled out a lot of new moves like a backpack stunner and a motherfucking missile drop kick. There was even a Lana interference spot which, while I didn’t like since it felt like it detracted from the rest of the match and didn’t mean anything in the rest of the match, didn’t completely ruin this for me. Ryback passed out in the Acolyte *** ½
This show was bookended by two very good, very different matches. Owens and Swagger a more US indy spotfest type match while Rusev and Ryback had a tremendous hoss fight. The Ascension match wasn’t very good but it did its job and didn’t overstay its welcome. Watch this show.