The following column was written by Eric Kanes on NoDQ.com in May of 2011…
Match 1 – Randy Orton d. CM Punk (Last Man Standing Match)
-Randy Orton vs. CM Punk to start off the show? I thought it’d be Mysterio/Rhodes but this works. I think Punk will pick up the win here after interference.
-Whoa! I’m loving Randy’s new look with the beard.
-Booker T is on commentary. I’m starting to miss Michael Cole. Since it’s Extreme Rules, I wonder if we’ll be asked to CALL THE POLICE~! tonight.
-Take a shot every time Jerry Lawler says “I don’t think he’ll get up from that.” You’re welcome.
-I think the announce table was supposed to break there. Orton took a pretty hard bump.
-Haha I’m loving CM Punk using the kendo stick as a cane.
Final Analysis: **1/2 That was a bit of an anti-climactic ending. The match went for about 22 minutes but it was way too slow. It started off slow but the pace never picked up. The whole match was pretty much Punk beating Orton with a kendo stick. An RKO off the top rope was a predictable, lame way to end it. Throw in the announce table botch and this wasn’t a very strong way to start the show.
Match 2 – Kofi Kingston d. Sheamus (Tables Match)
-Told you guys this match was happening.
-We now have a tables match and a ladder match on the card. Doesn’t this kind of make the TLC pay-per-view irrelevant?
-The spots where Sheamus and Kofi missed the table were fantastic.
Final Analysis: *** I really enjoyed this match and it was definitely a step up from the opener. There was a spot where Sheamus threw Kofi onto a table but Kofi did a split over it, a spot where Sheamus hit the brogue kick while Kofi was on the apron but Kofi flew over the table, and a spot where Kofi hit trouble in paradise on the apron but the table was too far. All the times that the match nearly ended made it very enjoyable. The final spot with Kofi diving onto Sheamus through the table and the fact that the right guy won is the reason that this match gets a high rating of ***. The title is off Sheamus. Let’s see him booked correctly from now on.
-Haha R-Truth’s interview has been the highlight of the night so far. The monstrous facial expressions are awesome. He’ll likely cost Morrison the match tonight. Mark it down.
Match 3 – Michael Cole & Jack Swagger d. Jim Ross & Jerry Lawler (Country Whipping Match)
-Are they really just going to whip each other for 10 minutes?
Final Analysis: 3/4* All they did was whip each other throughout the match. At one point, Jack Swagger took out Jerry Lawler so Jim Ross whipped both Jack Swagger and Michael Cole. While he was whipping Jack Swagger, Michael Cole rolled him up and Michael Cole is now 2-0. I’m fine with him being undefeated as it gives him even more heat but please end this feud already. It’s gotten way too stale and has begun losing viewers. And bah gawd, enough with the whips already.
-John Cena cut a promo and did that thing where he talks normally AND THEN RAISES HIS VOICE. He says that for the first time in 10 months, the champ will be here tonight. I hope not. I’d give Miz at least a couple more months with the belt.
Match 4 – Rey Mysterio d. Cody Rhodes (Falls Count Anywhere Match)
-I see “Broski of the Week” and “Are You Serious, Bro” signs in the front row. Nice!
-Ouch, that was a hard shot by Rhodes to Mysterio…and there’s a “Holy sh*t” chant.
-Booker T needs to make his mind up on what’s too extreme and what isn’t. He’s changing his mind every 5 seconds.
Final Analysis: ***1/2 Fantastic match. Match of the night so far. There were a lot of good spots and the length was just right. It didn’t go too long so it never got too slow and it wasn’t too quick either. The ending was Mysterio spitting mist in Rhodes’ face and then hitting the 619/springboard combo. I know that a lot of people wanted Rhodes to win but this was the right move. I talked about it in my preview column. It’ll likely be Miz/Mysterio sometime down the road and Rey had to get the win here if he was going to look like a legit contender. Anyway, nice match. Couldn’t ask for anything more.
-So why are all of the divas on Layla’s side? Are we supposed to forget that she did all of the same things that Michelle did?
Match 5 – Layla d. Michelle McCool (No DQ/Loser Leaves WWE Match)
-Michael Cole is hilarious with his “undefeated” speech on commentary. Now, let’s keep him undefeated and on commentary.
-Layla is doing a good job of seeming like she’s giving it her all. She shouldn’t cry, though. It looks like she’s laughing and it’s just awkward.
-“Take Care, Spike Your Hair” sign spotting in the front row.
-Kharma! F*ck yes!
Final Analysis: *1/2 The match itself was OK and slightly above average for a diva’s match. The big story, though, was the debut of Kharma who took out Michelle McCool. I don’t even care that she debuted as a face. I’m just glad to see her. Now let’s have Kharma squash The Bella Twins, please.
Match 6 – Christian d. Alberto Del Rio (Ladder Match)
-We’re an hour and 45 minutes into the show and there are only two matches left. It looks like both world title matches will get 20-30 minutes.
-That was a sick kick by Del Rio onto the ladder.
-Oh man! I thought Del Rio had it for sure right there with Christian being trapped.
Final Analysis: **** This was terrific. I said that this would be Match of the Night and so far it has been just that. There were several good spots and a lot of moments where I thought Del Rio had it. First of all, when Christian was trapped, I thought Del Rio had it. Then, when Brodus came out for the distraction, I thought that was it for sure. For those of you that missed it, Del Rio was about to get the win when Edge came out honking causing the distraction. Christian knocked him off the ladder and finally became world heavyweight champion.
Wow. The pop that I heard from the crowd was probably the biggest one since The Rock returned in February. I don’t know how long Christian will be champion but I’m very glad to see this. He’s paid his dues and he’s earned this.
Match 7 – Big Show & Kane d. Wade Barrett & Ezekiel Jackson (Lumberjack Match)
-This is a bit out of the blue.
-I swear, I can’t identify half of the lumberjacks. I’ve never seen these people before. Are they NXT rookies or something?
Final Analysis: * What the hell was the point of this? This lasted less than 5 minutes and all it did was make The Corre look even more like idiots. I mean, come on. Wade Barrett will more than likely be competing for the world title in a month or two. Why book him like this? I don’t get it.
Match 8 – John Cena d. The Miz & John Morrison (Steel Cage Match)
-I’m calling it now – there’ll be “Let’s Go Cena” and “Cena Sucks” chants throughout the match but you won’t hear the same for Morrison. Further proof of why he’s not a main event guy yet.
-Michael Cole: “This might be John Cena’s final opportunity to get the WWE championship around his waist.” Has he not been watching the product for the past six years?
-Booker T: “159 days as champion, got to be a record.” Now the announcers are competing over who can make the more idiotic remarks.
-“Let’s Go Cena! Cena Sucks!” Here we go.
-Booker T: “Do not try this at home.” Weird. I was just about to go do a moonsault on my neighbor. Booker’s in the lead!
-R-Truth takes out not only John Morrison but John Cena as well. Hopefully, this is a sign of things to come.
-Miz and Cena are exchanging blows. “Yeah” for Miz, “Boo” for Cena.
-Aww come on!
Final Analysis: ***1/2 The match was just OK. It was just a spot-fest for the most part with flip after flip after dive after dive. There wasn’t much of an actual match being worked. Most of the spots seemed forced too. The ending was brutal with R-Truth taking out John Cena with an axe kick only for John Cena to Superman his way to victory two minutes later, after an AA off the top rope. They could’ve at least had The Miz put up a fight. This was ridiculous. The commentary didn’t help either.
Overall, this show gets a 7/10 from me. There were some good moments (Christian winning, Kharma debuting) and some good matches (Christian/Del Rio, Mysterio/Rhodes, Kingston/Sheamus) but there was a lot of stuff that just left me going “WTF” as well.
The Orton/Punk match was a weak way to kick off the show, the Country Whipping Match was just what everyone expected, and the appalling booking of The Corre continued.
Cena’s win came at a really bad time. The Miz has not picked up a single clean victory in a world title defense to date. With the draft, he could’ve at least gone over Mysterio before dropping the title to Cena. The way Cena won was weird too. R-Truth just took him out yet he got up and hit the AA. He could’ve at least sold the injury.
The only good thing that came out of his victory was the fact that he’ll probably go on to feud with Truth in a month or two. That’s good to see. These two can put on a great feud.
I will be right back here this Tuesday with my weekly RAW Review but until then, I’m out!