It’s Great Balls of Fire and despite the ludicrous name, the PPV has actually been quite well-built, so I’m looking forward to seeing what it has in store. Lets go.
Pre-show match – Cruiserweight Title match: Neville (c) vs. Akira Tozawa
This was a decent little match. Neville gets some control as he continues doing well in his heel role, Tozawa had some good momentum though with the crowd firmly behind him and Titus backing him up, he has a few close calls at getting the title, but in the end Neville crotches him on the top tope and then gives him a spin kick to the groin(cue great balls of fire jokes) to get the pinfall. Neville winning via cheap tactics, means things are probably far from over and look forward to seeing these go at it again and really hoping for Tozawa to win that belt.
Winner: Neville(via pinfall) ***
Match 1 – Seth Rollins vs. Bray Wyatt
Solid match here. This is probably the least interesting feud on the card but they worked it well and delivered some good action. I also think putting it first was the right move as the crowd would be fresh for it. Wyatt gets the win after raking Rollins eyes and hitting Sister Abigail, I’m glad that Wyatt got the win, but lord knows if this will actually lead somewhere for him, but to be honest I’m not sure where any of these guys coulld go to next. Still it was a good effort overall and I enjoyed it.
Winner: Wyatt(via Sister Abigail) ***1/4
Match 2 – Enzo vs. Big Cass
So this was absolute squash by Cass and he handled himself great while doing it, really bringing out his aggressive and dominant side. Enzo also worked really well in the babyface role with the crowd trying to support him in coming back, but it was hopeless as Cass decimated him and finished him off with a big boot. I look forward to seeing if where they both go from here.
Winner: Cass(via big boot) ***
Match 3 – Raw tag team title 30 minute Ironman Match: The Hardys vs. Sheamus/Cesaro
When Kurt first announced this on Raw I thought it was a joke, just seemed like an odd stip for these teams, but alas this was still a very solid match. I really liked the tactics of Sheamus & Cesaro throughout including them smartly getting the first fall in the first few seconds of the match, taking their time being in control whilst they were ahead in points and then stealing the deciding point at the end when Cesaro grabs Jeff with a pin after he’d hit a swanton bomb on Sheamus. Obviously Hardys are a little more limited these days but they and everyone else worked hard and it deliverf well. It does drag a little here and there but they have a great finishing stretch with Hardys trying hard to get those extra falls and it was an enjoyable match overall.
Winners: Sheamus/Cesaro 4 – 3 ***1/2
Match 4 – Raw Women’s Title Match: Alexa Bliss (c) vs. Sasha Banks
This was a good match. Banks started off well constantly getting the upper hand but Bliss manages to gain control working on Sasha’s back. Both women did really well here and it’s some of the most consistent that Bliss has been in-ring. I thought the countout finish could have been handled a little better since its only a slap that stops Banks from going outside after Alexa so it felt a little off, but other than that I’m fine with it as it allows the feud to continue and I’d be happy to see these two go at it again.
Winner: Sasha Banks(via Count out) ***1/4
-After the match, Banks isn’t happy and attacks Bliss. Bliss manages to defend herself and goes to put Sasha through the main announce table, but Sasha pushes her off it and dives off hitting Bliss with a Meteora.
Match 5 – Intercontinental Title Match: The Miz (c) vs. Dean Ambrose
Pretty solid match, kept it mainly back and forth with a decent pace, didn’t like it as much as their previous matches, but I think I’m just getting a little bored of seeing these two together and hope this is the end of the feud, crowd didn’t seem all that invested either, so they should both move on to other things now. It was still good work from both men though with the Miztourage of course getting involved to help Miz get the win and retain his title.
Winner: Miz(via Skull Crushing Finale) ***
Match 6 – Ambulance Match: Roman Reigns vs. Braun Strowman
This was very good, not as good as their previous encounters but still very enjoyable, just a straight up physical and intense matchup, though the finish was somewhat funny as Reigns goes for a spear but Strowman moves so Roman dives straight into the ambulance, allowing Strowman to close the doors and get the win. These guys just work great together and I’m happy for this feud to keep going
Winner: Strowman ***1/2
-Post-match Reigns opens the doors and dives out of the ambulance delivering a spear to Strowman, he slams the doors against Strowman and then puts him in the back of the ambulance instead, he then drives it into the back and reverses and crashes it into the back of a truck to try and murder Strowman. They then have an impromptu match between Curt Hawkins and Heath Slater but only show some of it as they focus on firemen trying to open the door to get Strowman out of the ambulance, they manage to open it and start helps Strowman, but he refuses their help and stumbles away all bloodied and battered. This thing just keeps escalating and at this point I do believe its gonna lead to someone’s actual death.
Main Event – Universal Title Match: Samoa Joe vs. Brock Lesnar
Good Main event, they kept it short and worked it well, the opening was awesome with Joe wasting no time going straight after Brock and giving him a Uranage through an announce table, things kind of slow down a bit then as Joe keeps going for the coquina clutch and Brock struggles to stay in things. He manages to land some Germans and at the end he goes for the F5 but Joe slips down into the coquina clutch and after being stuck in a for fair amount of time, Lesnar manages to desperately hoist up joe and deliver the F5 to get the pinfall and retain the belt. Joe definitely made it tough for Lesnar and I don’t think things are over between the two, so they may clash again at Summerslam in some way.
Winner: Lesnar(via F5) ***1/4
This was a very solid PPV overall, I wouldn’t say that any match was fantastic, but everything was still enjoyable and mostly above average. I like some of the feuds they’ve got going on and am intrigued to see how any of it will lead to Summerslam which at the moment looks to have lots of potential. Good stuff.