It was Dean Ambrose's time to play the Game.
The Lunatic Fringe pressed for a title shot, and he got one in Toronto at Roadblock. The first shot at Triple H's latest WWE World Heavyweight championship, in fact. Hunter's plan had been to coast into WrestleMania against the man he hospitalized after Fastlane, Roman Reigns. But Dean kept coming at him.
Not stopping was a fitting theme, as the two men made there way to the ring with an hour left in the broadcast on WWE Network. They immediately began working a slow, hold-based style which had fans in Ricoh Coliseum wondering what they were watching while fans online asking if we were about to see a broadway.
Ambrose & his boss displayed good chemistry, and they drew fans back in with stiff strikes and nearfalls around the fifteen minute mark. Each man seemed to have an answer for most of the other's big moves.
In what is hopefully a turning point for Dean's character, the story they told - and commentary reinforced - was that he came into the match with a savvy game plan. He worked over the knee early, and then went for submissions like the Figure Four and Sharpshooter later.
Controvery came when a Dirty Deeds resulted in a three count for the challenger, but referee John Cone immediately waved off his own call, saying Ambrose's feet were under the ropes. Hunter tired to cheat to win right after that, but Dean kicked out, and then he snapped.
Taking it to Trips on the floor, he popped the crowd with spastic D-X chops while they were both down. But then he went too far, and set the champ up a elbow drop on the announce table. But Hunter moved, and Ambrose's crashed and burned like the Dean of old.
He beat a ten count, but ran right into a Pedigree and a loss.
The false finish worked everyone for a second, and gives them a future angle where Ambrose can say he pinned the champ.
But for now, this roadblock was just a speed bump on the way to everyone's appointed bouts at WrestleMania.