I originally was not planning on watching WWE: Over the Limit last night. I was driving home from Toronto and figured that I could catch the highlights online somewhere. This, after I pleaded that everyone bought the PPV so Punk and Bryan didn’t get blamed for poor numbers. Anyway so a couple of hours into the 9 hour drive home the wife, who hates wrastlin; gets a craving for buffalo wings. Since we didn’t want to go too far out of our way she looked up some places on her phone and found a Buffalo Wild Wings just off the highway in Rochester. So we go in and to my surprise what do we see? CM Punk vs Daniel Bryan for the WWE Championship! Needless to say I was thrilled. Even more needless to say, the wife was not.
So with no further adieu, let’s talk about the last hour of over the limit.
Punk/Bryan was the match the WWE seemed to never want to admit the fans wanted. I can’t remember a WWE title match with two peaking superstars be undersold so much on a card. Bryan won the title shot by beating Jerry Lawler, Punk came out to applaud him, and that was pretty much it. They interacted with each other the last couple weeks but there was no war of words. No storyline whatsoever aside from Punk getting injured by Kane on Friday’s SmackDown partially due to Bryan. Essentially they announced Punk/Bryan a month ago and said “See ya on May 20th.”
Thankfully both men proved their worth and completely delivered, and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. With the exception of the random shoot I can’t stand most of the segments and promo’s that aired today. I watch wrestling to see wrestling. Not beefed up guys that can’t act. When I want that I watch The Expendables. This was all about two best performers going one-on-one for the title and they put on a chain grappling clinic. There were ooh’s and ahh’s throughout the match with plenty of fast moving momentum swinging moments. The main thing that I look for when giving an opinion of a match is whether I can predict the finish. I had a feeling Punk would win, but there were a number of times I thought Bryan would surprise me. They had me guessing the whole way, and the best part was that it was kept in the ring, with no interference. Just old school wrestling at it’s best.
The finish was also great and holds up with the theme that had been built between the two over the last number of months. Two extraordinary performers with similar backgrounds, can’t really get an edge on each other. After numerous submission attempts, Bryan finally applied the Yes! Lock on Punk, and Punk countered by rolling over Bryan while still in the hold, getting the pin just before tapping out. A clean finish that leaves just enough doubt to give Bryan reason to get a rematch and keep his momentum. Submission rematch at No Way Out perhaps?
As good as Punk/Bryan was, Cena/Laurinaitis was just a train wreck. This had been hyped to no end for the last couple weeks, and through all the talking it was revealed that if Johnny lost he would be fired. So right away you knew he wasn’t losing. Then after the whole Big Show firing segment last week, everybody seemed to know how it was going to happen too. After all the delaying and video packages and talking, the match itself was a joke. Cena toyed with Johnny Ace the whole time, performing maybe 3 actual wrestling maneuvers. It actually reminded me a lot of the old Bobby Heenan weasel costume matches. Those were never the headline of a PPV though.
Cena was in all his glory. Going on the microphone, playing to the crowd. He did everything but actually hurt Laurinaitis. Dumping garbage on his head? Scaring him with a fire extinguisher? What a joke. After what seemed like forever, here comes Big Show, who of course sold out to save his job, hit Cena with the WMD, and gave Johnny Ace the win. Show walks off, end credits, just awful. This is the kind of thing that got me to stop watching wrestling all those years ago. Story and flash over wrestling and substance. Occasionally the WWE showed a willingness (sometimes against common sense) to change their plans when the rest of the world knew what they were doing. Not the case here though. Nothing shocking, nothing entertaining, just a waste of time. I’ll assume Cena gets into a feud with Big Show leading to a match at No Way Out. I also assume I won’t care about it.
I haven’t watched the rest of it yet, but it sounds to me like the rest of the show was mostly straightforward. Layla retained her Diva’s Championship, as did Kofi and Truth with the tag titles (and we know how much I love titles being retained). Brodus Clay and Ryback did what they also do against Miz and Camacho. Kane did more Kane stuff to Zack Ryder on Ryder’s home turf (YouTube). Does this mean he needs to relinquish his made up internet championship belt? No, it doesn’t.
Sheamus held on to the Heavyweight Championship against Orton, Jericho and Del Rio. I hear that it was an exciting match and it also seems that this could be the last we see of Jericho for a spell as he goes on tour with Fozzy. The other two could both continue to compete for the Sheamus as they have nowhere else to go at the moment. Either could take on Sheamus at No Way Out, but we could also get a triple threat match as well.
The other news worthy moment from the show had Christian winning a 20-man battle royal to claim an intercontinental title shot, then pulling it off with a win over Cody Rhodes. The most interesting part of the whole thing was that he did it as a face. He was a good heel on a program that needs them, but it looks like he’ll get a run as a face while likely getting a rematch with Rhodes next month.
That’s it for now. I’ll have more on Raw tonight.
Unless the wife says no of course.