Tonight live from Pittsburgh is WWE Roadblock: End of the Line! Kevin Owens defends the WWE Universal Championship against Roman Reigns, The New Day look to continue to their record breaking reign when they defend the Raw Tag Team Titles against Sheamus and Cesaro plus way more!
Kickoff Match: Rusev vs. Big Cass
I gotta say I’m not a fan of Big Cass being used because Enzo can’t beat up big guys. Shouldn’t mess with married women if their husbands are bigger than you Enzo. Very surprised to see Big Cass dominate about 90% of this match. The action went beyond the barricade and as both men battled outside, Lana shoved Enzo then pretended to hurt her ankle. Enzo has his back turned to Rusev who steamrolls him with a clothesline. Cass goes to check on Enzo not realizing the referee is almost done his ten count. Rusev slides in at the last second and ends up winning via count out. This match wasn’t anything to run home about. Go ahead and skip it if you are pressed for time.
The New Day (c) vs. Sheamus and Cesaro for the Raw Tag Team Championships
Very good tag match to start the show. Sheamus and Cesaro dominated the beginning with very good tag offense. Lots of close calls in this one which was great. Everyone is on edge wondering if this could be the end of New Day’s historic title reign. Xavier tried on three separate occasions to be a factor in the match and each time his efforts only resulted in a two count. At one point a misdirection from Kofi caused an inadvertent strike from Cesaro. The Swiss Superman steals the show again taking a deadlift suplex and turning it into a Neutralizer. Closing moments saw Sheamus reach out for a tag from Sheamus who blows it off and enters the ring. Kofi catches Cesaro with Trouble in Paradise and goes for the cover but Cesaro isn’t the legal man! Sheamus rolls Kofi up and gets the win! Sheamus and Cesaro are new Raw Tag Team Champions! The historic reign of The New Day is over and they are in shock. Finally when they come to they hand the titles over to the new champs. Sheamus grabs the titles and hogs all the glory for himself. Cesaro celebrates with the crowd.
Backstage Kevin Owens has another gift for Chris Jericho. A Christmas scarf which Jericho just tosses aside.
Sami Zayn vs. Braun Strowman
Stipulation here is Sami has to last ten minutes with Strowman to win. Braun is just taking absolute liberties with Sami. Things got very interesting when GM Mick Foley came down the ring with a white towel in hand. Is he going to quit the match on Sami’s behalf? Zayn pleads with Foley to not throw in the towel while Strowman threatens to inflict more damage on Strowman. Sami grabs the towel from Foley and launches it into the crowd. From then a spark was lit in Sami allowing him to get the upper hand. Strowman blasts through corner posts and barricades all the while the seconds tick away in Zayn’s favor. In the final seconds Braun is dazed in the corner allowing Zayn to hit the Helluva Kick. The clock strikes zero and Sami Zayn outlasts the monster Braun Strowman for the victory.
Chris Jericho vs. Seth Rollins
Really good match as you would expect from these two. The only small negative was it took a very long time to get out of the gate. On the flip side of that one could say the slow build helped elevate a fantastic home stretch. Just when the match was getting really good Kevin Owens has to come down to the ring and distract the referee. After Owens gets scolded away by Jericho he goes for a Codebreaker that was countered into a Pedigree. 1…2…3! Rollins gets the win. Again good match but with a very Raw-esque finish.
Rich Swann (c) vs. The Brian Kendrick vs. TJ Perkins for the Cruiserweight Championship
You know that tag line they have for the Cruiserweights “Don’t blink or you might miss something”? Perfectly applies here. It just stinks that the crowd was not into this one at all. I liked the ending where Perkins and Swann slugged it out then superkicked Kendrick out of the match. Swann retained with the Spinning Back Kick to the sound of crickets. WHEN SUDDENLY “The Man That Gravity Forgot” Neville comes to congratulate Swann. He attacks Swann! Perkins tries to help the champion but catches a beatdown as well. Crowd comes alive with “Thank You Neville” chants. Looks like Neville has gone full villain.
Sasha Banks (c) vs. Charlotte – IronMan Match for the Raw Women’s Championship
This was an evenly well pace match from the beginning with a ton of heavy strikes and good submission work from Banks. Charlotte remained confident throughout the match despite Banks kicking out of everything Charlotte threw at her. First came 19:14 into the match with Charlotte hitting Natural Selection from the top rope. Shortly after Sasha evens the bout getting a pin after a strange roll up. With 6:03 left in the match Sasha gets the submission with a sick Banks Statement. From there to the end Charlotte worked the left knee/ankle of Sasha Banks like a master surgeon. Charlotte is softening up Sasha for the Figure Eight. She finally locks it in with so much time left on the clock there is no doubt Sasha has to tap at some point. She valiantly tries to hold on but taps. She was just two seconds from walking out still Women’s Champion. The referee calls for a sudden death OT being as this is the final time we will see Sasha and Charlotte. The challenger goes right back to working the left leg with Sasha fighting back. At one point Sasha gets busted open in the mouth and is just gushing blood. Charlotte somehow is able to lock on the Figure Four from a seated position then bridges into her Figure Eight. Sasha is trying her best but in the end the pain is just too much for her and she taps. Charlotte Flair is now a four time Women’s Champion. Very very good Ironman Match. Although we complain that WWE beat this feud like a dead horse, these two ladies delivered each time they were asked to. Bravo.
Kevin Owens (c) vs. Roman Reigns for the WWE Universal Championship
The beginning of this match was very slow with a lot of back and forth, ground and pound offense and Owens stalling on the outside. I was afraid this pace would put the audience to sleep but credit both men for working to keep the crowd in the match. The match definitely picked up when Owens leaped off the barricade twice with a Frog Splash on the German announce table. Owens rolls Reigns back in the ring and hits him with another Frog Splash but only gets a two count. Reigns keeps fighting from underneath and not quitting which is starting to get under the skin of Owens. The Champion goes out and grabs his title with obvious bad intentions. He goes to strike Reigns who beats him to the punch with a huge Spear. Suddenly Chris Jericho comes sprinting down the ramp and into the ring. Jericho is in between Owens and Reigns and after an intense stand off Jericho hits Owens with a Codebreaker right in front of the referee. The Official calls for the bell and Owens wins via DQ. Owens stares at Jericho while in the corner clutching his title. Jericho goes over and raises the hand of the Champion! Apparently this was all one big elaborate set up. If Owens gets disqualified he keeps his Universal Title. Looks like the Best Friends will live on.
As Jericho and Owens go to make their exit Seth Rollins makes his way down to the ring. Owens and Jericho back pedal and retreat but Owens runs right into a Spear from Reigns. Jericho tries going through the ring but Rollins catches him and drops Jericho with a Pedigree. Rollins tosses Jericho outside. He and Reigns send Jericho crashing through the Spanish announce table with a Shield Powerbomb. They catch Owens as he wa making his way up the ramp and send him toward the main commentary table at the top. They send Owens crashing through that table as well with a Shield Powerbomb to close the show.
I thought the match itself was pretty good however I hate blatant DQs in front of the referee to finish a PPV. For that just figure out a way to work the match on TV. Other than that I’d say the show was good. Match of the night for me had to be the Women’s Ironman Match. I feel it told a great story with fantastic drama down the stretch.
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