Tonight was the annual Hell in a Cell pay-per-view. I generally don’t get excited for Hell in a Cell anymore because I don’t believe it should be a show on it’s own. I still believe Hell in a Cell should should be used at random times for shock value and to end a big feud. With that being said, I was very intrigued be the three Hell in a Cell match announced for the show. Before I get into that, here are the results of Hell in a Cell.
-Kickoff Show: R-Truth defeated Drew Gulak to retain the WWE 24/7 Championship
-Roman Reigns defeated Jey Uso in Hell in a Cell to retain the WWE Universal Championship
-Elias defeated Jeff Hardy by Disqualification
-The Miz defeated Otis to win the Money in the Bank Contract
-Sasha Banks defeated Bayley in Hell in a Cell to become the new WWE Smackdown Women’s Champion
-Bobby Lashley defeated Slapjack to retain the WWE United States Championship
-Randy Orton defeated Drew McIntyre to become the new WWE Champion
The opening match of the night was for the WWE Universal Championship between cousins Roman Reigns and Jey Uso. This family feud has been really intriguing to watch and has become quite intense. I have always loved when families feud in wrestling whether it be the Harts, the Steiners, or someone else. Reigns and Uso have been telling a great story which definitely continued tonight. There was so much symbolism in this match from Jimmy Uso’ involvement to Afa and Sika passing the torch to Roman after the match was over. I still truly believe that theory of The Rock coming out of retirement to challenge Roman at Wrestlemania is a very real thing. Whether it becomes a reality or not remains to be the seen, but I believe this story is far from over.
Several months ago, Jeff Hardy and Sheamus were involved in a feud that resulted in Elias being taken out of action. Even though Jeff was found to be innocent that hasn’t stopped Elias from targeting the Enigmatic Charisma. I will be curious to see if Sheamus somehow gets involved with this feud due to him being that was involved with the story at the time Elias was written off TV. This rekindled story started with Elias smashing Hardy with the guitar, but tonight Hardy got himself DQ’d and hit Elias with the guitar. With Hardy now being on Raw, I’d love to see him in feuds with Bray Wyatt, Mustafa Ali, Cedric Alexander, Andrade and Angel Garza. There is a lot of great young talent that Hardy can work with and have exciting matches with.
The Money in the Bank situation has been an absolute trainwreck. The actual match that took place this Spring was a great concept that poorly executed. I am honestly disappointed that Otis didn’t cash in during all the craziness between Braun Strowman and Bray Wyatt this past summer. It’s just another example of Vince McMahon and creative not following through with what they started. I am also disappointed that Heavy Machinery never held the Tag Team Championships during their time on NXT and Smackdown. I really don’t know where the career of Otis goes, especially now that Tucker turned on him. This match left me with more questions than answers.
Bayley and Sasha Banks inside the Hell in a Cell is the match I was looking forward to the most going into tonight. In the last six years the have been rivals, best friends, tag team champions and now bitter enemies. Their story and ring work together has been phenomenal. Both women got innovative tonight and beat the hell out of each other like most best friends usually do. With this win, Sasha Banks is now a Grand Slam Champion and takes her place with Bayley as the only other person to do so. I am sure that this story will continue on for a while longer, but after that I will be curious to see who each one feuds with.
I mentioned trainwrecks earlier and another thing that has been a trainwreck is the story RETRIBUTION. Here you have four individuals from NXT that had very bright futures ahead of them. Mia Yim, Shane Thorne, Dio Madden and Dominik Dijakovic were are doing great things in NXT and the Performance Center. The angle would have been better had they unmasked after a slow buildup and revealed their true identities. Changing their names, their looks, and having them lose to The Hurt Business has really killed any and all momentum this group could have had. The derailment continued tonight as Bobby Lashley easily defeated Slapjack(presumably Shane Thorne). I am not sure where the feud between RETRIBUTION and The Hurt Business is going, but in my opinion the interest has already been lost.
In the Main Event, Drew McIntyre put the WWE Championship on the line against Randy Orton inside Hell in a Cell. These two have been feuding for months and tonight was the culmination of their feud. I had a hard time getting into this match because they just weren’t as creative and innovative as the women were. After months of chasing the championship, Randy Orton is now a Fourteen Time World Champion. He and Triple are now tied for the most title reigns and they’re only behind Ric Flair and John Cena. That is some elite company to be in and it’s just chapter in the legacy of the third generation superstar.
Tonight’s show had some really good moments and a few shocking moments but I feel like the actual Hell in a Cell match has lost it’s meaning. The only match that I felt was Hell in a Cell worthy was Sasha Banks and Bayley. They used the cell, used weapons and raised the bar for today’s standards. I give Hell in a Cell a 6.5 out of 10. The effort was there but I go back to saying that the Hell in a Cell match has lost its meaning. It needs to go back being a random match that comes up unexpectedly when there is no other way to settle a feud. Up next is Survivor Series where we will see interbrand competition and the 30th Anniversary of The Undertaker