One of the more anticipated premium live events took place on Saturday and it was the Extreme Rules event. Since Triple H took over all the creative decisions, he has brought a new excitement about the product. Summerslam and Clash at the Castle were successes and Extreme Rules was thought to be the same. The continued mystery of the White Rabbit was supposed to have its payoff at Extreme Rules. Many believed it to be the return of Bray Wyatt. Aside from that, the card was stacked and the build up for all the matches have been great. Unlike last year, all these matches had some sort of stipulation. So how did Extreme Rules turn out? Let’s look at the review to see if it lived up to its lofty expectations.
We had the Donnybrook match between the Brawling Brutes and Imperium. Sheamus and Gunther had two classics for the Intercontinental championship at Clash at the Castle and this past Smackdown. The match was everywhere, and the crowd was hot from the beginning. This match was one of the more physical matches and it was expected from these two groups. There were quite a few spots in this match and one of them was Sheamus slamming Gunther through the announce table. This left the other two members of Imperium to fend for themselves against all three members of the Brawling Brutes. With all kinds of bruises all across his body, Sheamus hit Vinci with the Brogue Kick while Butch & Hollins held him for the win. Winners: Brawling Brutes
Match Rating: 4.5/5- This was an incredible opener and I’m thinking these two teams haven’t seen the last of each other. With the controversial finish to the IC title match on Smackdown, Sheamus and Gunther will probably run it back again.
Liv Morgan put her up Women’s Smackdown championship against former champ Ronda Rousey. The story headed into this match was people questioning if Liv could get Extreme? Morgan defeated Rousey at the Money in the Bank event after cashing in the briefcase she won earlier. She defeated Rousey in controversial fashion at Summerslam. As far as the match, these two tried with both pulling out all the stops. I’m going to be honest, I’m still not a fan of Rousey but maybe she’ll grow on me. In the end, Rousey applied some submission on Morgan and as she was passing out, she was laughing. Winner and New Smackdown Women’s Champion: Ronda Rousey
Match Rating: 3/5
We had the Strap Match between the returning Karrion Kross and Drew McIntyre. Kross was one of the first people Triple H brought back who were released. Kross immediately went after McIntyre and have gotten the best of McIntyre for the most part. If you’re familiar with Strap matches, then you know these can be brutal to watch at times. Kross played mind games from the start because he refused to put the strap on his arm. McIntyre quickly took advantage and put the strap on the arm of Kross while he was down. During the match, they beat the hell out of each other with the strap. McIntyre looked for the Claymore, but Scarlett got in the way, he moves her, but she pulls him back and blinds him with some spray to the eyes. Kross hit the Kross Hammer while McIntyre was blinded for the win. Winner: Karrion Kross
Match Rating: 3.5/5
Bianca Belair put up her Raw Women’s Championship against Bayley in a Ladder match. Bayley returned with Io Sky and Dakota Kai at Summerslam, and they formed Damage CTRL. Bayley targeted Belair after returning and even pinned her at the Clash at the Castle. These two put it all on the line in this match. There were a couple of crazy spots during the match and of course it involved the ladders. Io Sky and Dakota Kai got involved in the match. Belair took them out eventually by hitting a double KOD on both Sky & Kai. Bayley tried to take advantage of the interference. Bayley even tried to use the hair of Belair to gain an advantage. In the end, Belair hit the KOD on Bayley onto the ladder and retrieved her championship. Winner and Still Raw Women’s Champ: Bianca Belair
Match Rating: 3.75/5
We had the I Quit match between Edge and Finn Balor. Edge has been feuding with Judgement Day ever since they turned on him. When you have Edge and Finn Balor in a match together you already know it’s going to be good. These guys fought all over the arena while pulling out all the stops. There were instances where I was like, who’s winning this match because it was going both ways. Damian Priest and Dominik got involved and then Rey Mysterio came to help Edge. Dominik even attacked his dad and Rhea Ripley got involved, which brought out Beth Phoenix. Phoenix laid everyone out with a chair and then went toe-to-toe with Ripley. Ripley eventually laid her out with brass knuckles and set her up to hit her with the chair. The rest of Judgement Day held Edge and asked him to quit, and he did. Winner: Finn Balor
Match Rating: 4/5– Amazing match with so many layers. Ripley eventually hit Beth Phoenix with the chair shot to her lifeless body. Amazing sequence of events with this one.
It was the main event time as Seth Rollins and Matthew Riddle battled in the Fight Pit. These two have been battling for months so they brought in Daniel Cormier as the referee for this contest. Cormier had to get at both Riddle & Rollins after they tested him. The Fight Pit is a cool concept, but it felt a bit rushed in the end. Rollins did some cool stuff inside the cage while playing mind games. Riddle also did some nice spots, which included hitting the Floating Bro from the top of the Fight Pit. The two men get up and Riddle locks in an arm submission, but Rollins tries to break out by slamming him into the steel structure several times, yet Riddle never relinquishes the hold, and that leads to Rollins tapping out after he transitions into the Triangle Choke. Winner: Matthew Riddle
Match Rating: 3.5/5
Return of Bray Wyatt
After the match, we thought nothing was going to happen as Cormier & Riddle was about to go behind the curtain. The lights went out and Michael Cole asked if they were still on the air. He’s got the whole world in his hand’s song begins playing out in the arena as the lights appear from the phones of the fans. Huskus is then shown as a person in the crowd, and then Mercy the Buzzard appears, with Ramblin’ Rabbit also popping up. Finally, Sister Abigail is shown standing near the ringside area, and then a mask is shown on the commentary desk, with The Fiend then appearing at the ringside as well.
A door is then shown at the top of the ring, while we are then taken to the Firefly Funhouse with everything being covered in cobwebs until a television appears with someone in a mask talking, asking “who killed the world?” He claims they did, and then we go back to the door on the stage, which is kicked open to show a lantern, with the masked man appearing in person to “holy sh*t” chants, he takes off the mask to reveal himself, it’s Bray Wyatt! He tells the camera to “Run,” blows out the light and the show goes off air.
Overall Rating: 8/10- What an amazing event Extreme Rules was. Below are my top 3 happenings from Extreme Rules.
- Return of Bray Wyatt
- Brawling Brutes vs. Imperium
- Edge vs. Finn Balor
What did you think about the Extreme Rules? What was your favorite match or moment? Leave some feedback below about anything related to the Extreme Rules event.