SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
WWE Live Show Results
March 25, 2016
New York City at Madison Square Garden
Report by Bryant Guzman of Ozone Park, N.Y.
I sat at Section 120, Row 8, so I was pretty close to the action in an elevated sense. When I got in, I noticed a pretty packed crowd (MSG house shows seem to be very family-oriented now, as evidenced by pretty loud kids). I also wonder if it had to do with the previously announced Daniel Bryan Night, which is what I was primarily there for. There was no mention of Daniel Bryan and they announced another house show for July.
(1) Dolph Ziggler beat The Miz. Good starter. The crowd was into and I noticed people buying into the nearfalls.
(2) U.S. champion Kalisto beat Rusev (w/Lana) to retain the U.S. Title. It was suppose to be a triple threat between Kalisto, Ryback, and Alberto Del Rio, but it was apparently subject to change. Lana was with Rusev for a change, which the crowd popped for. Pretty standard match that started out slow. Kalisto got his spots in and the match ended, leading to…
(3) Ryback beat Sin Cara. Ryback attacked Kalisto from behind after the previous match. Sin Cara came to Kalisto’s aid for an impromptu match against Ryback, which ended in about two minutes. The crowd was dead for this.
(4) Sasha Banks & Becky Lynch beat Team B.A.D. (Naomi & Tamina). Good pop for Becky and Sasha got a pretty loud reaction. Good tag match – nothing that stood out and Becky and Sasha looked to be having fun out there has opposed to disliking each other because of the Mania storyline.
(5) Big Show & Kane beat The Wyatts (Bray Wyatt & Erick Rowan w/Braun Strowman). Bray Wyatt essentially got a babyface reaction, getting pretty loud cheers from every demographic. MSG was illuminated by everyones’s camera phones, which was an amazing sight. Kane and Big Show got crickets, though, which is odd since they were the default babyfaces. Very slow match; it was the bathroom break match for a lot of people, as I noticed a good chunk getting up from their seats.
(6) Divas champion Charlotte (w/Ric Flair) beat Natalya to retain the Divas Title. This was essentially their Roadblock match with less time and a botch-less finish. Ric actually grabbed Charlotte to put her in the ropes for a break, causing Natalya to have a legit reason to slap Flair and then lose.
Jonathan Coachman was a special guest announcer and he got a “Welcome Back” chant before introducing the Dudley Boyz. All was well until he asked them where were the tables? Bubba Ray got angry and cut a pretty good heel promo, insulting the N.Y. crowd and constantly insulting Coachman. The Usos came out, then New Day did their usual thing, and MSG chanted “New Day Rocks” instead of sucks.
(7) WWE tag champions New Day (Xavier Woods & Big E.) beat The Dudleys and The Usos in a three-team match to retain the WWE Tag Titles. I heavily dislike WWE’s Triple Threat Tag Team format, where two teams fight and the third has to tap a non-team member to get back in. This is where Lucha Underground excels in simple logic. But, there was a recurring theme in this match where everyone slapped Xavier on the back to tag in. It made for some funny moments, and the match was pretty good despite the format.
(8) IC champion Kevin Owens beat A.J. Styles to retain the Intercontinental Title in Styles’s MSG debut match. A.J. got a pretty good pop along with Owens. Their match last Monday on Raw was better, but A.J. actually lost clean here. This was probably the only match the crowd was really invested in until the end. About 5-to-8 percent of the crowd left after the match before the main event…
Triple H probably got the pop of the night and people were standing up for his entrance. Dean Ambrose also got a nice pop, but not as nice as Hunter. Roman Reigns got showered in boos with kids giving him the only cheers.
(9) Roman Reigns & Dean Ambrose beat WWE World Hvt. champion Triple H & Sheamus in a tag team main event. This tag match was pretty boring, to be honest, and I noticed more people leaving as the match progressed, either to beat the crowd out of the arena three-and-a-half-hours into the show or because the match was eh. It made me worried about WrestleMania as a whole. There was a spot during the match where Roman banged Hunter’s head into the ring steps and the crowd counted along to 10, but on the ninth bump, Reigns paused and Hunter sold as if he was going for the tenth bump, so Hunter ended up ramming his own head into the steps while Roman looked around. The crowd laughed at this.