WWE held its 5 PPV of the year from the All-State Arena in Chicago Illinois. The show was built around not only return of CM Punk who had been absent since WrestleMania XXIX but the return of the 3 Stages Of Hell Match between John Cena and Ryback for the WWE Championship. Once again WWE changed a match result in fear of the show becoming predictable with Alberto Del Rio winning back the World Heavyweight Championship from Dolph Ziggler in a math that resembled the famed “Double Turn” seen during the WrestleMania 13 match between Bret Hart and Steve Austin in the same building back in 1997.
Pre-Show: Sheamus defeated Damien Sandow: They had a good little 10 minute match with Sheamus winning with the Brouge Kick. Pretty predictable start here but honestly did anyone think Sandow would get a upset win over Sheamus.
(1) Curtis Axel defeated Wade Barrett and The Miz: Curtis Axel won a good triple threat with lots of near falls and saves after pinning Barrett before he tapped to the Figure Four leg lock from Miz. Axel was the only choice to win here as Miz is just a guy in the midcard now and Barrett needed the belt off of him so they can actually try and push him up the card. Axel is a newer act who in the last month has been positioned weird in the fact hes been in matches with Cena and HHH but not gotten clean wins. They played it up big about him winning the title on fathers day seeing that he is the son of Curt Hennig who was IC Champion back in 1990. After the match Axel and Heyman ran into HHH and they had a face off. Vince then came in and more or less made HHH/Axel 6 I think were up to now but Hunter still wont wrestle him.
(2) AJ Lee defeated Kaitlyn: AJ won the divas title after a solid match for the WWE divas. It was quick but you don’t need the divas to wrestle for 10 minutes. This wasn’t as good as the Knockouts Match from the TNA PPV earlier this month but still better than most WWE Diva matches. Kaitlyn went for the spear but stalled and mocked AJ but blowing her a kiss. AJ kicked out the spear and hit the Black Widow or Inoki Octopuss submission. They played it up that Kaitlyn was having a nervous breakdwon or something after the match with her crying in the ring. Backstage all the babyface women consoled her.
(3) Dean Ambrose Count Win over Kane: This was just a match. Ambrose hit the Headlock DDT after Kane cleared the spanish announce table. The crowd booed the count out finish which in Chicago WWE should of known better.
(4) Alberto Del Rio defeated Dolph Ziggler: Ziggler played total babyface here and they played up the concussion with Del Rio kicking him in the head getting heat. They tried to have the match stopped but Ziggler wanted to fight on. Del Rio hit the superkick to get the win even though he played “heel” throughout the match he got a pop from the fans. Thankfully WWE realized Del RIo was not a good face and they decided Ziggler should be in that spot cos he comes off as such a more likeable guy over Del Rio. Del Rio then did an interview saying he gives 100% for the fans and all that jazz as they booed him pretty heavily.
(5) CM Punk defeated Chris Jericho: This was so awesome. At the moment this is the best match WWE has done all year just edging out the Taker/Punk match from Mania. These guys stole the show. Punk played total babyface here with Jericho playing heel. Punk won after hitting 2 GTS. Go see this match.
(6) The Shield defeated Randy Orton and Daniel Bryan: These guys got screwed over when it comes to time. They had a good match considering the time they had but it wasn’t as good as their TV matches. They didn’t do much in the sense of Bryan/Orton the only spot being Bryan hitting a tope on Orton after Reigns shoved Rollins out the way. Reigns speared Bryan which lead to an RKO from Orton that led to the Curb Stomp from Rollins to Bryan for the pin. Yes they pinned the man who is meant to face Cena for the title next month and not Orton who is still just a guy. Anyway Orton gave Bryan the RKO after the match,
(7) John Cena defeated Ryback: 3 falls so lets get going
Fall 1: Ryback won the lumberjack match with the Shellshock. Cena dove out onto the lumberjacks at one point and it was a nice spot.
Fall 2: Cena won the tables match after Ryback went for the Shellshock with Cena reversing it into the Attitude Adjustment.
Fall 3: Cena won after hitting the Attitude Adjustment on top of the ambulance with Ryback going through the roof thus ending the mach.
This wasn’t to the callibar of the Austin/HHH 3 Stages of Hell from 2001 or the HHH/HBK one from 2002 but was better than the mess Orton and HHH in 2009. It was a fine Main Event and did it’s job ending the Cena/Ryback angle.
Overall: A really good show with a lot of good wrestling. Jericho and Punk is the stand out match on this show by far. The rest was ok to good.