Arena Reports WWE News: Live Report from Summerslam PPV - detailed notes on divas dark match, Sting masks handed out
Aug 24, 2009 - 11:12:06 AM
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WWE Summerslam in-person Live PPV Report
August 23, 2009
Los Angeles, Calif. at the Staples Center
Report by Tim Tse, Torch reader
I attended Summerslam last night at the Staples Center and thought it was a very entertaining show, definitely exceeding my expectations. The arena was very full and seemed sold out, unlike the last time I came here for the infamous Raw rescheduled from the Denver Debacle. The crowd seemed to be mostly consisting of kids, while still having some older males too who cheered for the heels.
As I walked to the building, some people wearing TNA Bound for Glory t-shirts and Sting makeup were handing out the same fliers from the day before outside of Summerslam Axxess that proclaim Sting's "Final Appearance in California" and "The Final Curtain?"
The event started with Justin Roberts coming into the ring announcing that there would be a special Summerslam "bonus match" and announced the special guest referee Chavo Guerrero, to boos which kinda surprised me since the crowd was mostly Hispanic. After that, Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler made their entrances, with Jerry having a pretty good pop and a "Jerry" chant, while Michael Cole got booed. Since they were out and the cameras were filming, the match will most likely be on the DVD.
The 15 Divas all came out with Justin Roberts announcing all their names, showing at least WWE learned from the Miss WrestleMania fiasco. Just standard action with the divas going through the middle rope rapidly. There were only really two memorable moments from this match. The first was Melina and Mickie James squaring off and both ended up going to the top rope exchanging blows until both fell and got eliminated. The second notable moment came when it was down to the final four - Natalya, Beth Phoenix, Kelly Kelly, and Eve. While Kelly Kelly and Eve were down, Beth Phoenix and Natalya had a staredown, similar to what usually happens in battle royals between two dominant superstars. When they were alternating punches, the boos came to Beth Phoenix's while loud cheers came to Natalya. Eventually, Beth Phoenix eliminated Natalya, which drew boos from the crowd. Beth also did the spot where she carries both Kelly Kelly and Eve, which drew a pop from the crowd.
As Kelly Kelly and Eve teamed up together to try to eliminate Beth, Chavo Guerrero came in and helped Beth win by throwing over both Kelly Kelly and Eve. The crowd booed, but got their happy ending as all the divas, or at least just the face ones as I couldn't really tell, came in and beat up Chavo until Hornswoggle came from under the ring. The Divas held Chavo down until Hornswoggle did the tadpole splash on him, and afterwards the divas celebrated with Hornswoggle by dancing with him. The match itself lasted around 5-10 minutes.
After the match was over, the rest of the announcers came out, with J.R. getting the biggest reaction, which shows even the new generation of WWE fans have a lot of respect for the man which further doesn't make any sense why WWE treats J.R. the way they do sometimes. While Matt Striker came out to his old entrance music and Titantron and slapped hands with the fans at ringside, Josh Matthews did not have an entrance, which I would later find out because he was also doing interviews backstage. As the announcers came out, the ring crew came out and were frantically changing the mat, which I have no idea why.
Live Summerslam Notes
-- The actual show began with Ziggler and Rey Mysterio's match, and to no surprise Rey Mysterio came out first to a large pop. This was a really, really good match live and actually probably had the most heat during a match other than the two main events that closed the show. The crowd was really into the nearfalls and was into both Mysterio's high risk offense offense and Ziggler's intensity during the match. While a small "Let's go Ziggler" match could be heard in the first few moments of the match, a very loud one rang out after Ziggler did that move that kinda reminded me of the Fame-asser. Awesome match, one of my favorites of the night, although I was kind of disappointed Dolph didn't win the title.
-- The interview for MVP and Swagger got more heat than the match itself. After MVP's promo an MVP chant came out, but none were really there during the match itself. I could see people filing in and out getting food and stuff. I don't fault either one of the performers though because they had a decent match, it's just if they had built it up better I think people would have cared more. I had totally forgotten too that the match was added to the card until Jack Swagger told me at the Summerslam Axxess the day before.
-- The video feature on the guest hosts of Raw didnt really get much of a reaction from the crowd, except for when they showed Shaq, which he was pretty heavily booed. Luke Perry got a decent pop, but for some odd reason, the crowd completely booed Nancy O'Dell from Access Hollywood to the point that I couldn't even hear her. All I know was she must have been talking about her charity since a graphic for it came up, which I thought was rather callous and disrespectful of the audience and might not bode well for her guest host spot on Raw. Freddie Prinze, Jr., though, had a favorable reaction which surprised me.
-- When Chris Jericho came out, the same small vocal minority that had first started cheering for Ziggler were also chanting Y2J for him. Their new theme song together is also a definite improvement over that old mash up that just seemed thrown together, while this one actually seemed integrated together and their video wall actually fits together now. Cryme Time's reaction wasn't as loud as when they had first made their WWE debut against the Spirit Squad a little bit under three years ago. The match was okay, not too much heat until near the end when JTG rolled up Jericho and looked like he would be getting the victory.
-- C.M. Punk's promo drew a lot of boos, until he referenced the dork from Twilight, which drew a lot of laughs from the crowd.
-- Kane and Khali's match shouldn't have lasted as long as it did. It wasn't as awful as the Jenna Morasca and Sharmell match, but the crowd definitely crapped on the match, with a small "You Can't Wrestle" chant could be heard directed towards Khali. Khali also got booed when he raised his arms in the air when he first got into the ring, which I thought was kind of funny. The crowd popped when Kane won, but I definitely think it was because the match was over and not necessarily because they were cheering him.
-- The crowd popped for Vince McMahon's star on the walk of fame, and Slash got the biggest pop of all the celebrities shown.
-- DX's entrance was quite the spectacle to witness live, and at this point in the show had received the biggest pop. During the match however, the crowd died down when Legacy was dominating and most of the cheers really came for HBK. I was definitely surprised to see how much offense Legacy was getting and do think they were elevated from the loss.
-- When the announcement came for the ECW Title match, I was actually thinking that finally it would get some respect by being one of the last matches on the show rather than being first as usual on a pay-per-view. That quickly wore off, though, and I was definitely disappointed because I was looking forward to seeing what Christian and William Regal could put together. While a quick victory is nothing to complain about, Christian to me still remains the most under-ated talent on the roster and definitely deserves more than this.
-- The WWE title match had a lot of heat during the match, arguably more than the TLC match. The majority of the crowd was definitely in favor of Orton, which I believe may or may not have been attributed to his Q & A session at the Summerslam Axxess which I will get into in another report. The crowd was really into the match, especially with all the shenanigans and were definitely confused when Lillian made the announcement of new WWE champion at first. Many people around me also really thought that the fan running into the ring was real.
-- Hardy came out to a loud ovation, but I was shocked that during the match there weren't as many Hardy chants as usual. The crowd was really into the match of course, plenty of spots that drew Holy S--- chants from the crowd. Of course, THE loudest pop from the whole show came for the ending with the Undertaker. Everybody was talking about that, and the crowd legitimately seemed very happy with the show afterwards.
Overall the show was really memorable and in my opinion better than this year's WrestleMania. Summerslam Axxess the day before was a lot of fun, which I will also try to give a detailed review of soon, and as a wrestling fan I couldn't ask for a better weekend. All of this was topped off with the news that Bryan Danielson is coming to WWE, which has me very very excited. I do have a little hesitation though because I'm afraid they'll stick him with a stupid name like such classics as Gunner Scott, Braden Walker, or Scotty Goldman, but I really do hope he achieves the same success as C.M. Punk has. Anyways, again great show to attend to live and a great weekend overall provided by WWE.
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