By Jason Powell
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Aired live on WWE Network
Toronto, Ontario at Ricoh Coliseum
The show opened with a video package that focussed on the Triple H vs. Dean Ambrose match… Michael Cole, JBL, and Byron Saxton were on commentary…
New Day made their entrance to a favorable reaction. There was a table set up in the ring with a covered object. They delivered a promo about how you see the power of positivity, hips that don’t lie, Francesca II, and the WWE Tag Team Champions when you think of them.
Kingston said it’s because they eat their BootyO’s cereal. They uncovered the object to reveal a box of BootyO’s. They did a skit where E pretended to be a kid who didn’t want to eat his BootyO’s, and he worked in shots at Sheamus and Barrett. They did a “New Day Rocks” chant with E still using the child voice…
Powell’s POV: The live crowd loved the skit, so it looks like New Day are clearly babyfaces in this match.
1. Big E and Kofi Kingston (w/Xavier Woods) vs. Sheamus and King Barrett for the WWE Tag Team Championship. Cole said New Day has held the tag titles for 202 days. Cole dropping title count days has been the kiss of death previously. Sheamus and Barrett worked over Kingston until Sheamus went up top and asked the crowd if they were not entertained. He leapt off the ropes and Kingston dropkicked him and then made the tag.
Big E had a flurry of offense, but Barrett cut him off with a suplex and then tagged in Sheamus. Kofi tagged in too and performed a nice cross body block for a two count. Sheamus blocked Trouble in Paradise and applied the cloverleaf. The fans chanted “New Day Rocks.” Barrett ran over and tried to take out E, who disposed of him pretty easily.
Kofi broke free and tagged in E, who set up for the finisher that he and Kingston use. Sheamus slipped out and then Kofi leapt off the top rope and onto Sheamus and then landed awkwardly. Barrett got a visual pinfall on Big E as Woods distracted the referee. Sheamus chased Woods around the ring only to have the recovered Kingston take him out at ringside. In the ring, E hit The Big Ending on Barrett and pinned him…
New Day beat Sheamus and King Barrett to retain the WWE Tag Team Championship in 9:35.
Powell’s POV: New Day survived Cole listing the length of their title reign. The crowd loved New Day. They stuck to their usual routine and simply sold a bit more than usual. The crowd even ate up Woods distracting the referee when Barrett had E pinned.
Backstage, Greg Hamilton interviewed Paul Heyman, who named Toronto as the new capital of Suplex City. Heyman dropped a Toronto Raptors reference and said Wyatt is going to be conquered by The Beast…
The broadcast team narrated footage of Chris Jericho attacking AJ Styles following their match against New Day on Raw. Footage then aired of the promo that Jericho delivered on Smackdown…
Chris Jericho made his entrance to loud cheers from the Canadian crowd. “Toronto, you can shut your filthy mouths right now,” Jericho said. He told the fans they had their chance to cheer for him for months and they chanted for AJ Styles instead. Jericho said that if they want to cheer for Styles then they can go to hell. “Typical Canadians, always a little step behind the rest of the world,” he said. He mocked them by doing an AJ. Styles chant while adding “eh” behind it.
Jericho said he is the greatest icon in the history of Canada. There was a “We Want Bret” chant. Jericho acknowledged it and said they were never getting him again. Jericho said he’s ashamed to be Canadian. Jericho said moving to the United States years ago was the smartest move he ever made.
Jericho said he moved from Canada because it literally stinks and Toronto is the anus. The crowd responded with an “asshole” chant. Jericho spoke about flavors of the month and included Jack Swagger. Jericho said “We The People” is such a stupid chant that it was probably created in Ontario. Jericho told the fans to put their hands over their hearts and say that Chris Jericho is the best in the world. Swagger’s entrance music interrupted Jericho…
Powell’s POV: My early pick for promo of the year. This was a riot. The crowd went from loving their fellow Canadian to chanting “asshole” at him in a matter of minutes. Don’t get your hopes up for seeing Styles, though, because he’s working a 30-minute iron man match main event against Kevin Owens in Atlantic City tonight.
2. Chris Jericho vs. Jack Swagger. The crowd chanted “We The People” along with Swagger. They also chanted AJ Styles while Jericho got the better of Swagger early in the match. Jericho ran Swagger into the barricade. Back in the ring, Jericho threw a nice dropkick at Swagger. The crowd chanted CM Punk at one point.
Swagger came back with a couple of clotheslines, yet failed to get the crowd to react. In fact, there were more boos than anything, and then Swagger got them to chant “We The People” again. Jericho avoided the Swagger Bomb. Swagger avoided a Lionsault. Swagger then connected with the Swagger Bomb and got a two count.
Swagger avoided a Walls of Jericho attempt. Jericho avoided the ankle lock. Jericho caught Swagger with a nice enzuigiri. Jericho went for the Codebreaker, but Swagger caught him and slammed him, which led to a two count.
Swagger applied the Patriot Lock. Jericho reached out and grabbed the leg of the referee and eventually pulled himself to the ropes to break it. Jericho applied the Walls of Jericho and got the submission win…
Chris Jericho beat Jack Swagger in 8:00.
Powell’s POV: Swagger was a very odd choice to be the man to face Jericho following Jericho’s anti-Canada promo. I get it if they didn’t want to go with Sami Zayn in this spot since this match was designed to make Jericho look strong, but did they really have to go with a guy who is all about the USA? That said, I liked the match and really enjoyed Jericho as a heel.
A WrestleMania video aired and focussed on The Rock. We are 22 days away… A video package focussed on the NXT Tag Team Championship match…
Enzo Amore, Colin Cassady, and Carmella made their reaction to a nice reaction. Enzo did his mic work before the match. There were some fans chanting along and others who had no idea what was happening. There was a loud NXT chant once they entered the ring and the fans were louder for the “sawft” chant. The NXT tag champions made their entrance…
3. Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson vs. Enzo Amore and Colin Cassady (w/Carmella) for the NXT Tag Team Championship. JBL said Dash and Dawson remind him of the Minnesota Wrecking Crew. Cole plugged NXT live special for WrestleMania weekend. The challengers got the better of Wilder (Cole called him Dawson) and Dawson tried to tag in. The ref didn’t allow it and told him it was because he was standing on the bottom rope.
The challengers cleared the chaps from the ring. Dawson launched Enzo onto both opponents and the crowd responded with a loud NXT chant. Cole said something about pandas at the zoo and Enzo’s hair. The champions came back by isolating Enzo.
Enzo eventually made the hot tag to Cassady, who hit big boots on both men and then performed a swinging slam on Wilder. The challengers set up for the rocket launcher, but Dawson pulled Enzo down. Carmella slapped Dawson. Cass ended up taking a double team move at ringside. Enzo rolled up Dawson and got a two count. A short time later, the champions hit their combo Codebreaker style move onto Amore and pinned him…
Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson beat Enzo Amore and Colin Cassady to retain the NXT Tag Team Championship in 10:25.
Powell’s POV: A fun match. The NXT fans were loud and it seemed like the match won over many of the fans who were unfamiliar with both teams. You have to assume that Vince McMahon is in love with Cassady’s size.
Backstage, Greg Hamilton and his ridiculous hair interviewed Natalya, who had a t-shirt with Bret Hart and Owen Hart on it. Natalya dedicated the match to Bret and said when she wins she will be that much closer to a shot at the title.
Charlotte and Ric Flair showed up laughing over the idea of Natalya thinking she could win the match. Charlotte said Natalya is just a warmup match for her title match. Natalya told her to put the title on the line if she was so confident. Charlotte said not so close to WrestleMania. Natalya said her uncle was right when he said the Flairs are cowards. Ric got worked up. Charlotte calmed him down and then granted the title match while saying Natalya would never win the championship just like the Maple Leafs will never win the Stanley Cup again…
Powell’s POV: For a moment there, I thought they might have Natalya win a non-title match and make the WrestleMania match a four-way.
4. Charlotte (w/Ric Flair) vs. Natalya for the Divas Championship. Cole acknowledged that Charlotte beat Natalya to win the NXT Title. JoJo delivered the in-ring introductions for the title match. Charlotte shoved Natalya a couple minutes into the match and said, “I’m the champ now.” Natalya responded with a big chop. Natalya put Charlotte in the surfboard and followed up with a dropkick to a seated Charlotte, who then avoided a Sharpshooter.
Cole noted that Bret Hart is recovery from prostate surgery and added that his friends say he is doing well. Meanwhile, Charlotte pulled Natalya to the floor and jawed at her. Back in the ring, Charlotte slammed Natalya’s head off the mat several times. Charlotte maintained control and her father strutted at ringside. Moments later, Charlotte strutted inside the ring and then covered Charlotte for two.
Charlotte worked over the left knee of Charlotte at 6:20 and then went for her finisher, but Natalya countered into a small package for two. Charlotte came right back by clipping the back of Natalya’s leg. The women traded shots in mid-ring with Natalya getting the better of it and performing a Russian leg sweep and then a clothesline before going for the Sharpshooter. Charlotte kicked free.
Charlotte caught Charlotte with a nice kick to the head and then jawed at her before applying the figure four. Charlotte couldn’t bridge into her finisher. Charlotte rolled over. Charlotte told her to tap and Natalya yelled no. Charlotte pulled herself to the edge of the ring and then held onto the figure four while leaning her body over the apron.
Charlotte performed the Natural Selection for a two count at 10:35. Charlotte showed some frustration and then followed up with a suplex. Charlotte went to the top rope, but Natalya cut her off and then performed a powerbomb for a nice near fall. A “this is awesome” chant started.
Natalya went for the Sharpshooter, but Charlotte countered into a pin for a two count. They jockeyed for position and Natalya eventually applied the Sharpshooter. Ric reached his hands inside the ropes and kept his palms on the mat. Charlotte eventually pulled herself over and put her hands on her father’s hands, then pulled herself a bit. Natalya released the hold and slapped Flair, then Charlotte rolled up Natalya and put her feet on the ropes for leverage while pinning her…
Charlotte defeated Natalya to retain the Divas Championship in 13:30.
Powell’s POV: A really nice match. I still prefer their NXT match that had more emotion from the live crowd, but this was the closest they have come to matching the quality of the NXT match. Cole tried to explain the finish afterward by saying Flair wasn’t disqualified because he didn’t actually help his daughter. It was a bit odd to watch him just keep his hands flat on the mat, but the explanation helped.
A WWE Network commercial aired… Cole set up a video package for the Brock Lesnar vs. Bray Wyatt match…
Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper made their entrance. Wyatt spoke about how Lesnar is truly a conquerer and listed some of his accomplishments. Wyatt said Lesnar has never conquered him. Wyatt said he made a deal with the devil himself who said he and Harper will slay the beast. Once Wyatt finished his speech, the broadcast team questioned whether it was a two-on-one match.
Lesnar and Heyman made their entrance to a big ovation. Heyman stood on the apron and introduced Lesnar in Bruce Buffer style…
5. Brock Lesnar (w/Paul Heyman) vs. Luke Harper (w/Bray Wyatt). The match started with Harper facing Lesnar while Wyatt stood on the floor. Lesnar dominated Harper and then got caught up with Wyatt on the floor. Harper caught Lesnar with a suicide dive. Back inside the ring, Harper got a two count off a discuss clothesline.
Lesnar slipped away from Harper and then performed a German suplex, then followed up with a few more with the crowd counting along. The crowd chanted “one more time” and Lesnar obliged and then gave Harper another one for good measure. Lesnar picked up Harper and put him down with an F5 and pinned him. After the match, Lesnar went to ringside and went after Wyatt, who simply fled backstage…
Brock Lesnar beat Luke Harper in 4:00.
Powell’s POV: I think it may have technically been a handicap match, but Wyatt never tagged in and didn’t even stand on the ring apron during the match. So, basically, WWE falsely advertised Lesnar vs. Wyatt. The funny thing is that Lesnar vs. Harper was more appealing to me on paper. Still, it’s disappointing that they did not deliver what was advertised.
6. Sami Zayn vs. Stardust. Cole said Sami has worked in 29 countries around the world and has come a long way from wrestling for the International Wrestling Syndicate in Canada. Stardust dominated for the majority of the match. Stardust even performed a superplex for a two count.
Sami came back and performed a nice dive at ringside and then hit a Blue Thunder Bomb for a two count. Stardust came back with a Beautiful Disaster kick for a near fall. Sami performed a suplex into the corner and then followed up with a Helluva Kick for the win…
Sami Zayn beat Stardust in 12:40.
Powell’s POV: Sami works best from underneath, but it has to be hard for casual fans who are not familiar with him to be excited about watching him give up so much offense to Stardust. Cody Rhodes is a great in-ring performer, but Stardust has been positioned as an undercard wrestler for so long that fans just don’t buy him as an in-ring threat. Sami’s style will click much better when he starts working with bigger names.
A video package set up the main event… Triple H made his entrance and spit a bunch of water. A shot aired of Dean Ambrose walking backstage shortly before he made his entrance. A fan held up a sign that read, “When It Reigns It Bores.” Ouch. JoJo delivered the in-ring introductions for the title match. Hey, where’s Eden?…
7. Triple H vs. Dean Ambrose for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Ambrose clowned around a bit early on by lying on the top rope to show off, and then by grabbing Hunter’s nose. The broadcast team spoke about Ambrose’s unorthodox style. There was a CM Punk chant, which actually led to some boos in response. There were also dueling chants for Hunter and Ambrose.
The first ten minutes were fairly slow paced. Hunter took control and applied a crossface. Ambrose came back with punches, but Hunter put him down with a spinebuster. A short time later, they traded blows in mid-ring with Ambrose getting the better of it. Hunter cut off Ambrose’s offense with a clothesline.
Hunter set up for a Pedigree, but Ambrose backdropped him over the top rope and onto the floor. Ambrose tried for a suicide dive, but Hunter caught him with a punch. Later, Ambrose applied the figure four. Hunter punched his way out of it.
Ambrose popped the crowd by putting Hunter in a Sharpshooter. “Can you imagine if Triple H taps to the Sharpshooter?” Cole asked. Triple H pulled his way toward the ropes, but Ambrose pulled him back to mid-ring. Hunter eventually reached the ropes.
Hunter clotheslined with the top rope, but then Ambrose performed Dirty Deeds on Triple H and appeared to get the three count. The referee immediately waved off the pin because Ambrose’s feet were under the bottom rope. Hunter rolled up Ambrose and used the ropes for leverage and only got a two count.
Ambrose whipped Hunter into the corner and Hunter went over and tumbled to the floor. Ambrose performed a suicide dive. Cole said Ambrose proved he can beat Hunter even though the referee called off the pin. The fans chanted “this is awesome.”
Ambrose performed his top rope elbow onto a standing Hunter on the floor. Ambrose placed Hunter on the broadcast team’s table and threw several punches at him. Ambrose went to the ring and smiled as he looked to the crowd. Ambrose went back to ringside and climbed into the barricade, then ran it and went for an elbow drop, but Hunter moved and Ambrose crashed through the table. The crowd delivered a “holy shit” chant, which was actually silly given the spot.
Hunter rolled back in the ring. Ambrose got back inside the ring at nine and Hunter immediately hit him with an awkward Pedigree and got the three count.
Triple H beat Dean Ambrose in 24:40 to retain the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
Cole immediately spoke about how Ambrose has nothing to be ashamed of. They noted that Ambrose will face Brock Lesnar in a No Holds Barred match at WrestleMania, and Hunter will defend the championship against Roman Reigns at WrestleMania. The show went off the air…
Powell’s POV: A good main event. The first half of the match was slowly paced, but there was some good drama during the second half of the match. The live crowd bought into the false finish and were into the near falls. Overall, Roadblock is what most of us thought it would be. They weren’t going to shake up the WrestleMania lineup three weeks away. I know some fans convinced themselves it was possible, but it just never struck me as being realistic regardless of whether it would have made for a better WrestleMania lineup. I will have more to say about Roadblock later tonight in members’ audio. Thanks for watching along with me.
The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell features guest Eli Drake talking about signing with the NWA, his departure from Impact Wrestling, rejecting an intergender match with Tessa Blanchard, his WWE developmental run, and much more...