WWE PPVs CALDWELL'S EXTREME RULES PPV REPORT 4/26 (pre-show): Complete coverage of Barrett vs. Neville, Dean crashes set, more
Apr 26, 2015 - 9:59:00 PM
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WWE Extreme Rules PPV Report
April 26, 2015
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor
Live PPV Pre-Show
The one-hour pre-show began with Renee Young hanging out at the NBA on TNT studio panel with Byron Saxton, Booker T, and Corey Graves. Renee and the trio broke down the PPV line-up, then Renee relayed a health update that Daniel Bryan is unable to compete tonight. Therefore, Bryan will not defend the Intercontinental Title tonight and his scheduled opponent, Bad News Barrett, will face Neville on the PPV pre-show.
Off to the social media lounge, where Tom Phillips introduced himself and previewed a Q&A with Kane. Back to Renee, who introduced a video package on the Seth Rollins vs. Randy Orton WWE Title feud now involving Kane. After the video ended, there was a dueling chant of "Let's Go Cena / C-M Punk" live in the arena.
In the middle of a discussion on the Divas Title feud between Nikki Bella and Naomi, Dean Ambrose wandered in front of the camera shot. Ambrose kicked off Byron Saxton and grabbed a mic, which wasn't working. So, Ambrose started yelling. Ambrose shouted that he came here for a Chicago Street Fight and revenge against Luke Harper. Ambrose's mic finally worked for his final line about getting revenge "right here in Chicago." Ambrose allowed Saxton to return to the studio panel before stomping away.
In the middle of a discussion on Roman Reigns vs. Big Show, Bray Wyatt's video interruption played. Bray spoke from a smoky room about the object of his anger trying to become larger than life. But, that is a failure of a goal. Bray told this person that he will cower, tremble, and behold the new face of fear.
Back to Renee, who sent it to ringside for Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, and JBL to introduce the in-ring portion of the show. Out first was Bad News Barrett, who picked up a mic on the way to the ring. Barrett said he knows everyone was excited to see him bullhammer Daniel Bryan to become Intercontinental champion. But, Bryan is not medically cleared, and he is not even here tonight. Barrett accused Bryan of not being man-enough to face him.
Barrett claimed to be the U.K.'s version of Michael Jordan, minus the gambling addictions. So, he decided to give the good people of Chicago a match tonight. "So, let's send out Neville (pop)," so he can take the Bullhammer that was destined for Bryan. Neville was introduced to a big reaction for his PPV debut match.
A -- BAD NEWS BARRETT vs. NEVILLE
Barrett controlled the action early on, but Neville responded with quickness to wow the crowd and surprise Barrett. Neville flung Barrett to the outside, then landed a baseball kick through the ropes. But, he tried another high-flying move and Barrett yanked him down across the ring apron. Barrett smashed Neville into the guardrail, then the PPV cut to a break.
[Network Break. WWE ran a lengthy spot for what's on WWE Network later this week.]
Back to the match, where Barrett kicked Neville in the gut back in the ring. Barrett then pounded away on Neville's back before punting him in the gut. Barrett applied a headlock, but Neville fought to his feet, only to take a high knee to the face. Barrett resumed control, then delivered a backbreaker for another two count. Barrett lost control, then found himself on the outside. Neville came flying over the top rope with a twisting splash to Barrett, knocking him down to the floor. Big reaction and a replay.
Back in the ring, Neville snapped off a German Suplex with a bridge for a two count. Neville saw an opening to climb to the top turnbuckle, but Barrett cut him off and delivered Winds of Change for a close two count. Neville fought back, but walked right into Wasteland. Barrett covered, but only got another two count. Barrett wanted his third potential finisher, the Bullhammer elbow, but Neville ducked and hit an enziguiri kick. Neville then climbed to the top turnbuckle, but Barrett crotched him at the last second. Barrett tried the Bullhammer, but Neville ducked again and kicked Barrett in the head. Neville positioned Barrett, then hopped to the top rope and nailed his Red Arrow finisher. Clean landing and Neville scored the pin for the win. WWE panned the crowd and one fan on the front row was freaking out over Neville getting the W.
WINNER: Neville at 10:36. Very good PPV pre-show match giving Neville a big win this early in his main roster run. This definitely felt like WWE trying to transition from Bryan to Neville in this slot, especially with questions over Bryan's long-term health. (***)
The length of the Barrett vs. Neville match confirmed that the Tag Title match is shifting from the pre-show to the main PPV.
Back to Tom Phillips with Kane, who blew off the first question about when he's bringing back the red mask. Moving on, Tom read another tweet wondering if Kane is still relevant. Kane took exception and stormed off the social media lounge. Tom sold being flustered and sent it back to Renee to wrap up the pre-show. Also, Booker T tried to fire up the crowd in the arena to close things out.
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