WWE MAIN EVENT #318
NOVEMBER 1, 2018
REPORT BY MIKE MEYERS, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Nigel McGuinness, Vic Joseph, Percy Watson
REASONS TO WATCH…
– Nigel’s disapproval of mid-match dancing.
– Fun tag match with a great finish.
(1) TITUS O’NEIL vs. MOJO RAWLEY
As O’Neil made his ring entrance, the announce team spoke of the historic, amazing night that was Evolution. They added that Rawley was looking to turn his fortunes around tonight as Rawley entered and ran the ropes. Rawley pointed his finger in O’Neil’s face, and O’Neil seemed too calm and accepting of this aggressiveness.
The two had a prolonged elbow and collar tie-up, which Rawley ended with a surprise head butt to O’Neil. Rawley again pointed his finger in O’Neil’s face, which O’Neil finally reacted accordingly by slapping it away while Rawley looked amused. They were about to lock up again, but O’Neil performed a go-behind and clubbed Rawley’s back, and Rawley retreated out of the ring. Rawley climbed back in and attempted a front kick, which O’Neil caught, dropped, and then punched Rawley with a big right hand. Up against the ropes and corner, O’Neil landed vertical slaps on Rawley’s chest. Loud Ric Flair “Woo!” from the crowd each time. The ref moved in between the wrestlers so Rawley could get out from the corner, and Rawley took advantage and landed a right of his own to O’Neil.
O’Neil staggered backward to the center of the ring, then charged at Rawley in the corner but Rawley was ready and lifted both boots to O’Neil’s chest, sending him to the mat. Rawley landed a series of boots to the prone O’Neil. O’Neil climbed and draped his arms over the middle rope, and Rawley ground his knee into O’Neil’s back. The ref began the rope count, and Rawley counted out loud along with him – a very nice touch. Rawley landed a left jab and a front kick to O’Neil, and O’Neil retalliated with a loud slap across Rawley’s face. Incensed, Rawley planted four knees into O’Neil’s midsection, and attempted a snap mare but O’Neil blocked the move. Instead, Rawley whipped O’Neil into a short clothesline, leveling O’Neil and pinned for a two count. Rawley applied a chinlock.
O’Neil got to his feet to minimal urging on by the crowd, but Rawley threw him down onto his back and pinned for another two count. Rawley applied the chinlock again. The crowd began chanting, not for O’Neil to come back, but rather, “Mojo sucks!” I suppose they don’t like the babyface so much as they dislike the heel. O’Neil got to his feet again and powered Rawley into the corner, breaking the hold. Rawley rushed toward O’Neil and applied the hold for a third time, but O’Neil immediately tossed him into the corner again and was about to deliver another chop but Rawley punched him in the face first, sending O’Neil staggering toward the middle of the ring. Rawley charged, but was met with a big clothesline. Rawley quickly got to his feet, but stumbled and fell down before crawling to the corner – nice selling.
O’Neil posed in the corner and did his “Ooh-ra” chant before charging and landing a big body splash to Rawley in the opposite corner. O’Neil went back to the corner and ran again toward Rawley, but Rawley struck first with a flying shoulder tackle, sending O’Neil to the canvas. O’Neil righted himself against the ropes, as Rawley rolled to the center of the ring, got up, and clotheslined O’Neil over the top rope to the floor. O’Neil landed on his feet, and awkwardly moved to the barrier and slammed his own head against it. Rawley joined O’Neil at ringside and drove O’Neil’s back into the barrier before rolling him back into the ring. Rawley rolled into the ring behind O’Neil, bounced off the ropes but O’Neil caught him and landed a sit-down powerbomb for the three-count. Percy indicated that the man from “Ebony’s Power 100 picks up the victory tonight.”
WINNER: Titus O’Neil by pinfall.
(Meyers’ Analysis: A standard, brief singles match with a couple nice moments. O’Neil only went for one pinfall during the match – unusual, even for a brief Main Event match, but it makes sense to not see multiple pinfalls in such a short time frame.)
-Main Event recap session:
Paul Heyman / Brock Lesnar Crown Jewel promo and Braun Strowman confrontation from Raw
Recap of Rollins & Ambrose vs. Ziggler & McIntyre, and Ambrose heel turn from Raw
Replay of Rollins calling out Ambrose, and Ambrose’s non-response from Raw
Recap of results from Evolution
Preview of Rousey vs. Lynch at upcoming PPV Survivor Series
(2) THE B-TEAM (Curtis Axel & Bo Dallas) vs. HEATH SLATER & RHYNO
The B-Team made their way into the ring to a very positive crowd reaction, thanks in no small part to the sing-along nature of their entrance music. Nigel indicated that these two have “lost their way” since losing the tag team titles to Ziggler and McIntyre. As Slater and Rhyno made their entrance, Nigel pointed out that they were facing similar challenges to B-Team, and that one of these teams has to be victorious tonight.
Axel started off against Slater, while the crowd chanted “E C Dub!” for Rhyno. The wrestlers locked up and Axel powered Slater into the corner. The ref intervened, and Axel slowly backed away for a clean break. The two smiled at each other, and Axel, showing shades of Carmella, performed the floss in the center of the ring. Nigel pointed out that “that’s not gonna help him win the match.” We shall see. Slater looked amused, and the crowd started a “He’s got kids!” chant for Slater before the two locked up again.
This time Slater had the upper hand, moving Axel into a corner before breaking cleanly. Slater moved to the center of the ring and performed three dance moves of his own, which Axel approved of and applauded. Vic asked Nigel who was winning based on dancing points, and Nigel exclaimed, “It doesn’t matter!” Axel shoulder blocked Slater to the mat, but Slater quickly rebounded and performed a hip toss to Axel. The wrestlers exchanged some mat-based maneuvers and go-behinds before Slater created some space, ran the ropes, and shoulder blocked Axel to the mat. Axel rose and hip tossed Slater before dragging him to the B-Team’s corner and landed kicks to Slater to the rhythm of the B-Team chant, led by Dallas. Dallas tagged in and the B-Team nearly landed a double clothesline but Slater caught the ropes and rolled out of the ring to safety.
-Do Not Try This at Home message
Back in the ring, Rhyno had the upper hand against Dallas. While Rhyno applied a chinlock, the announce team discussed who should be on top of the Raw tag team division. Nigel picked the Revival, citing their being “tag team specialists,” while Percy opted for AOP, due to their sheer dominance. Dallas got to his feet to the sounds of the B-Team chant, led by Axel, but Rhyno used Dallas’ hair to plant him back to the mat. Rhyno tagged in Slater and held up Dallas for Slater to land a front kick. Rhyno shouted sarcastic support in Dallas’ face before Slater whipped him across the ring into the corner. Dallas crumpled to the mat and Slater covered for a two-count. Slater whipped Dallas back into his team’s corner and tagged Rhyno back in.
Rhyno leveled Dallas with a short clothesline in the center of the ring as the announcers noted how Rhyno and Slater have turned up the aggression. Rhyno punched and chopped Dallas before whipping him violently into the corner. Rhyno charged the corner, but Dallas dodged to his right causing Rhyno to spear the middle turnbuckle. A hot tag session led to Axel and Slater entering the ring simultaneously. Slater sprinted, defenseless, to receive a clothesline from Axel. Axel knocked Rhyno to his knees on the ring apron before clotheslining Slater again. Axel fired Slater into the corner, planted an elbow to his forehead, and snap mared him into a seated position on the mat. Axel then performed the Mr. Perfect rolling neck snap to Slater.
Slater reversed out of a neckbreaker attempt by Axel and rolled Axel into a surprise pin for a two-count. Axel sprung to his feet, planted a boot to Slater’s belly, which led to a Perfectplex / pin which was broken up by Rhyno at the two-count. Rhyno lingered in the ring, and the two whipped Axel across the ropes and lined up to deliver a double back body drop. Axel sniffed out the double-team and swerved straight at Slater and performed a sunset flip, but Rhyno grabbed Slater’s hands to keep him upright. Dallas, finally recovered, rolled into the ring and landed an elbow across Rhyno’s face, thus allowing Axel to complete his roll up on Slater for the three-count.
WINNER: The B-Team by pinfall.
(Meyers’ Analysis: Above-average tag match, with a little something for everyone: Comedy, mat wrestling, heelish behavior, tag team maneuvers, and a great finish. There are a couple moments where you can tell that Rhyno is taking it easy on himself, something he probably deserves to do at this point in his career.)
SHOW SCORE (0-10): 7.4
FINAL THOUGHTS: A decent first match and a better second match makes for a watcheable episode of Main Event. Good to see some fresh faces on the show: Titus O’Neil and the B-Team.
NOW CHECK OUT THE PREVIOUS REPORT: 10/25 WWE Main Event Report: The Revival vs. Bobby Roode & Chad Gable, Jinder Mahal vs. Zack Ryder, Reigns announcement recap