WWE Extreme Rules Review

By: Brad Shepard

Monday, July 16, 2018

   WWE Extreme Rules emanated from the PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


  Kickoff Show


-        Renee Young, Booker T, Sam Roberts and David Otunga were on the kickoff show panel.


-        Charly Caruso announced that Hulk Hogan has been reinstated to the WWE Hall of Fame and is now back in the WWE family.


-        Finn Balor was interviewed in-person by the kickoff show panel and said he was going to chop Baron Corbin down to size.


Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas defeated Sin Cara by pinfall

This match was okay at best.  It was a good reminder why it was scheduled to be on the kickoff show.  Sin Cara botched a move on the outside, which could’ve ended badly. 


-        The kickoff show panel attempted to interview Shinsuke Nakamura backstage, but he acted like he couldn’t hear them due to technical difficulties.  This came off rather awkward on TV.


-        Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre showed up in-person to the kickoff show panel for an impromptu interview.  Dolph said he doesn’t want to steal the show anymore, he just wants to win.


Sanity defeated New Day in a Tables match

This match was designed to put over Sanity (and Killian Dain, in particular) by having them beat an established team.  It was a fine match, just rather short.  Eric Young put Kofi Kingston through a table to end the match. 


-        The Deleters of Worlds cut a brief, nonsensical promo.


Main Card

The B Team defeated The Deleters of Worlds by pinfall to win the Raw Tag Team Championships

This match went on for too long and was okay at best.  Bo Dallas pinned Matt Hardy to end the match. 

After the match, Charly Caruso interviewed the B Team on the entrance ramp and they cut a ridiculous promo referencing Stretch Armstrong landing on the moon and B Team standing for Best Team.  Later, on social media, Matt Hardy teased a break up with Bray Wyatt.

-       Renee Young interviewed Kurt Angle backstage.  Angle said Brock Lesnar is not interested in returning to WWE at this time.  He can either show up on Raw tomorrow, he can come to terms of agreement on when his next title defense will be, or he will strip him of the Universal Championship.


Finn Balor defeated Finn Balor by pinfall

This was one of the best matches of the night.  Each Superstar did a nice job promoting the feud on social media, leading up to the match.  Balor pinned Corbin with an inside cradle.


-        Backstage, the Bludgeon Brothers beat up Team Hell No and injured Kane’s leg.


Carmella defeated Asuka by pinfall to retain the Smackdown Live Women’s Championship

James Ellsworth was hoisted above the ring in a shark cage but managed to escape – sort of.  Ellsworth foot was caught in the cage, which left him dangling upside down.  Asuka beat him up and Carmella capitalized on that, pinning Asuka.  After the match, Asuka beat up Ellsworth again, which the crowd was completely indifferent to.  This was a short match and it wasn’t very good.


Shinsuke Nakamura defeated Jeff Hardy by pinfall to win the U.S. Championship

If you blinked long enough, you may have missed it.  Before the match, Shinsuke landed a low blow on Hardy, while the referee wasn’t looking.  When the bell rung, Shinsuke immediately nailed Hardy with a Kinshasa and pinned him in about 6 seconds.  After the match, Randy Orton made a surprise appearance and attacked Hardy, kicking him below the belt.  Later, it was announced that a rematch would take place on this week’s Smackdown Live.  Hardy is working through a couple of injuries and should be taken off TV this week.


Kevin Owens defeated Braun Strowman in a Steel Cage match by escaping the cage

Braun was presented very strong, even in defeat, which was nicely done.  However, the way Kevin Owens won the match was via a stupidly orchestrated stunt off the top of the cage.  Braun chokeslammed Owens onto the outside announce table.  Even with the cushioned pad underneath to break the impact, it was an unnecessary risk, especially considering the importance of the match, feud and PPV itself. 


The Bludgeon Brothers defeated Team Hell No by pinfall to retain the Smackdown Live Tag Team Championships

Kane, who was attacked earlier in the evening, did not initially come out with Daniel Bryan.  Bryan fought alone until Mid-match, when Kane came out wearing a walking boot.  Bryan was double teamed and pinned a short time later in what was a boring, meaningless match.


Bobby Lashley defeated Roman Reigns by pinfall

This was the biggest shock of the night.  The Pittsburgh crowd booed and chanted throughout this match – “We want beachballs” and “Rusev Day,” among others.  The match ended when Lashley hit Reigns with a spear.


Alexa Bliss defeated Nia Jax via pinfall to retain the Raw Women’s Championship.

This was a short match.  It didn’t take long for both Mickie James and Ronda Rousey to get involved.  Alexa won in a quick but very sloppy match.  This was arguably the worst match of the show.


AJ Styles defeated Rusev via pinfall to retain the WWE Championship

This was a pretty good match.  No one expected Rusev to win, but this did give him an opportunity to have a match on a big stage against a big opponent on PPV.  Rusev delivered, showing he belongs.  Aiden English removed a turnbuckle and Rusev ran into it.  Styles pinned Rusev shortly after that with a phenomenal forearm.


Dolph Ziggler defeated Seth Rollins in an Iron Man match to retain the Intercontinental Championship

Rollins took an early lead, ahead three falls to zero.  Thanks to a little help from Drew McIntyre, Dolph came back, scoring four straight pinfalls to take a 4-3 lead halfway through the match.  Rollins scored a pinfall with 3:08 remaining and time expired before Rollins could pin Dolph again.  The match was announced as a draw and Ziggler remained Intercontinental Champion.

Pittsburgh’s own Kurt Angle then came out to a huge ovation and ordered sudden death overtime.

In sudden death overtime, McIntyre immediately interfered on the ring apron and with Rollins distracted, Ziggler landed a zig zag from behind for the pinfall.