KELLER INTERVIEWS ROB VAN DAM FOR FIRST TIME...
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WWE MAIN EVENT TV REPORT
APRIL 17, 2019
HULU STREAMING TV
REPORT BY MIKE F. MEYERS, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Renee Young, Byron Saxton, Sam Roberts
REASONS TO WATCH…
- Sam Roberts’s sardonic guest commentary
- Tamina’s personality evolves beyond “plank of wood”
(1) DANA BROOKE vs. TAMINA
As Brooke climbed into the ring, Byron informed us that Brooke “has been very public these last few weeks, about believing in yourself, standing for what you believe in, and overcoming the odds at all times.” As Byron introduced the panel, he pitched to special guest analyst Sam for the first time, and Sam said his expectations after the Superstar Shake-up are high, and all the Superstars have to do is live up to them.
As the match got underway, Sam said he was not even remotely impressed with Brooke’s showing at WrestleMania, and proceeded to throw her under the bus in a factual manner. The wrestlers locked up and Tamina shoved Brooke across the ring and to the mat. Tamina applied a wristlock, but Brooke cartwheeled out of the hold toward the corner. Tamina approached and landed a couple kicks which was met with some booing from the crowd. Brooke returned fire with kicks of her own, but was short-clotheslined to the canvas.
Tamina tossed Brooke out to ringside between the middle and top ropes. Home audiences round the world were shocked when the show didn’t cut to commercial. When Renee pointed out that Tamina is always in a salty mood, Sam responded, “Well I wouldn’t exactly be in a wonderful mood if I found out that I was returning to singles action and it was in a match against Dana Brooke, of all people.”
Brooke crawled into the ring and Tamina slammed her head into two separate turnbuckles, but Brooke responded by ramming multiple shoulders into Tamina in the third corner, but again Tamina shut down her token offense and tossed her back out of the ring. The crowd started to boo again, and Tamina gestured for them to “Shhhh.”
Brooked rolled back into the ring only to be immediately scooped up and slammed, followed by a pin and two-count. Tamina locked on a chinlock. Brooke fired some elbows to initiate her release, bounced off the near ropes only to be leveled again by a reverse elbow from Tamina. More boos as Tamina sneered and pointed to her ears. Tamina dropped to her knees and landed a few clubbing blows before reapplying the chinlock.
Brooke got to her feet again and landed a jawbreaker and reverse elbow. Brooke ducked a clothesline, then landed an enzuigiri, which, as Sam pointed out, “didn’t even knock the colossus off her feet.” With Tamina stunned in the corner, Brooke trotted to the opposite corner and conducted her floor routine which culminates with a bouncy reverse elbow to Tamina’s head. Brooke followed up with a bulldog and a pin for a two-count.
Tamina immediately countered with a power slam and a pin of her own – Brooke kicked out at two. Tamina hoisted Brooke onto her shoulders in a fireman’s carry, but Brooke slipped earthward into a surprised Tamina with a roll-up and pin for the three-count. Sam concluded, “I’m shocked, I’m surprised, and I have to admit, even a broken clock is right twice a day: That’s Dan Brooke in the WWE.”
WINNER: Dana Brooke by pinfall.
(Meyers’s Analysis: If Tamina is meant to be a “dominant force,” they did a decent job of framing her as one in this match. Brooke scrambled to get in fleeting bits of offense between episodes of being tossed around the ring and ringside areas. Tamina exuded 75% more personality and charisma in this match than she has on recent appearances on Raw, which still isn’t a whole lot, but good on her.)
-Main Event recap session:
- Buzzard / Dinosaur / Skeksis in a box promo video
- Replay of Lacey Evans vs. Natalya from Raw
- Replay of Styles, Rollins & Reigns vs. McIntyre, Lashley, & Corbin from Raw
- Doll in a rocking chair promo video
- Replay of Vince McMahon’s Smackdown acquisition announcement, featuring Elias and Reigns
(2) HEAVY MACHINERY vs. B-TEAM
The crowd was pumped and participated in the entrances of both teams. Otis started off against Axel. Otis backed Axel into a corner, but slowly backed off in a clean break. Axel acknowledged the sportsmanship and clapped his hands in appreciation. Otis locked in a side headlock and ratcheted up his grip a couple times while shouting. Axel punched his way free and fired Otis off the far ropes. Axel went down for a drop toe hold, but Otis wouldn’t budge. Otis attempted a stomp and elbow drop at the prone Axel, but Axel dodged both.
As Otis moved toward his own corner, Axel began doing the floss. Otis took note, and remained in the ring to respond. He squared up and began undulating his body before breaking into a floss of his own, followed up by several aggressive hip thrusts. Axel gave a thumbs up and said, “You’re awesome! That’s great!” He offered a handshake, but when Otis moved in to accept, Axel instead delivered a front kick. Dallas tagged in and B-Team did some brief double teaming on Otis, but soon Tucker tagged in and the tables were immediately turned. Otis and Tucker crushed Dallas in the middle of the ring and celebrated as he rolled out to ringside. We cut to commercial.
Back in the ring, Tucker was in control and pinned Dallas for a two-count. Axel tagged back in and landed a DDT which was good for a two-count. After some clubbing blows, Axel put Tucker in an arm lock, wrenching against Tucker’s face for leverage. Dallas tagged back in and landed a series of B-Team chant-along kicks. Tucker broke free from the corner and the wrestlers shoulder blocked each other to the mat. Hot simultaneous tags were made, and Otis went on a rampage of clotheslines and body splashes before tossing Axel with a fallaway slam. Otis executed the caterpillar and elbow drop, and Tucker tagged in so the duo could land the Compactor on Axel for the pin and victory.
WINNERS: Heavy Machinery by pinfall.
(Meyers’s Analysis: Heavy Machinery already have a paint-by-numbers match, and this was it. B-Team, who have normally behaved as faces, flipped the switch to act as heels against Heavy Machinery tonight. Sam was decidedly pro-Machinery, in contrast to his favoring the heel Tamina in the first match.)
SHOW SCORE (0-10):8.2
FINAL THOUGHTS:The two highlights of this episode were Sam Roberts and Tamina. Sam brings the same personality from WWE Kickoff shows – not being good or evil, but rather a pragmatic analyst who won’t abide weak babyfaces. Tamina, when not serving as a backdrop for Nia Jax, was finally able to interact with the crowd. Though it was minimal, it still felt like a quantum leap.