Your votes have been tallied and counted. This Saturday night, we'll be dipping back into the past.
The not too distant past.
Our Live Retro Blog this week is Summerslam 2013, taking place on August 18, 2013 from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California in front of a sold-out crowd of 14,166 members of the WWE Universe.
The third-place winner for Best Major Wrestling Show of 2013 by Wrestling Observer Newsletter (first among all shows in North America, as two New Japan shows finished 1-2 in the voting) features the first-ever one-on-one meeting (well, first since 2003--just... just go with it, okay?) between John Cena and Daniel Bryan for Cena's WWE Championship. WWE CEO Triple H will be the special referee.
On the undercard, "The Best in the World" and ex-Paul Heyman guy CM Punk will take on "The Beast" and current Paul Heyman guy Brock Lesnar in a no disqualification match. Smackdown's world title will be at stake too, as Alberto Del Rio defends the World Heavyweight Championship against Christian. And Bray Wyatt makes his WWE PPV debut as he takes on Kane in a "Ring of Fire" match.
Note the early start for this week's Live Retro Blog: 7pm eastern, 4pm pacific, 12 midnight in Britain. Everywhere else, figure it out. Pics and GIFs are okay, but don't abuse it, as the post has to be refreshed frequently throughout the show. Think of your fellow Cagesiders, yeah?
This week, the weather is hot, and so is the ring. Literally. No, seriously, it's probably gonna be like 500 degrees in that ring or something.
Howdy! Eddie Mac here, bringing you some hot live retro wrestling action.
- WWE CHAMPIONSHIP: John Cena [c] vs. Daniel Bryan (Triple H is the special guest referee)
- WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP: Alberto Del Rio [c] vs. Christian
- NO DISQUALIFICATION: Brock Lesnar vs. CM Punk
- RING OF FIRE MATCH: Bray Wyatt vs. Kane
- MIXED TAG TEAM MATCH: AJ Lee & Big E Langston vs. Kaitlyn & Dolph Ziggler
- Cody Rhodes vs. Damien Sandow
Oh, before we begin, quick recap of the preshow match: Rob Van Dam defeated Dean Ambrose via disqualification in a WWE United States Championship match at 13:48. You can see it here if you like. Or not. No big deal.
Summerslam 2013. August 18, 2013 from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA.
Summerslam has a host: The Miz. Why? A quick rundown of the PPV you ordered with the card you probably know about if you've followed WWE programming.
Fandango interrupts The Miz, then we cut to OUR FEATURE PRESENTATION: Summerslam: The Movie.
PYRO AND BALLYHOO as Michael Cole gives us a dry intro, followed by Lilian Garcia introducing Total Divas cast member Jojo with the National Anthem.
Match 1: Bray Wyatt defeated Kane in a Ring of Fire match at 7:49. Wyatt blesses Kane with the kiss of Sister Abigal to win. And of course the rest of the Family break through and get in the ring. You can now add this match to the list of matches that should have been retired in the Attitude or Ruthless Aggression eras. This was... not... good. Will people sour on the Wyatt Family leader after a poor outing? Was it nerves? I guess time will tell. Post-match, Kane was carried off by Rowan and Harper.
An ad for WWE 2K14 and our first chat with the expert panel, Josh Matthews, WWE Hall of Famers Booker T and Shawn Michaels, and Smackdown GM Vickie Guerrero.
Cut to earlier tonight when Paul Heyman compared tonight's Lesnar-Punk matchup with David-Goliath. Oh, and it's official and no longer rumor: Lesnar-Punk is no disqualification.
Match 2: Cody Rhodes defeated Damien Sandow in 6:40. Good match. Crowd was up for it. But Sandow's MITB era is not off to a good start.
Plug for the official Summerslam theme, "Gold Rush" by Clinton Sparks. And a look at Los Angeles. 17,739 strong. A look at Christian's career.
Match 3: Alberto Del Rio defeated Christian via submission in 12:30 to retain the World Heavyweight Championship. Another good match. Post-match, Del Rio says he's the hero the Latino community needs. Seemed to set up a setup for the return of Rey Mysterio, but it was not. Y U TEASE US WWE?
Backstage, The Miz is with the undefeated Maria Menounos. She's still undefeated after she and Natalya defeated Brie Bella and Eva Marie in a SummerSlam Axxess match. Fandango butts in on Miz for a second time, and Miz and Maria do a ballroom dance. I recall one of them being on Dancing with the Stars. Not The Miz.
UNADVERTISED Match 4: Natayla defeated Brie Bella via submission at 5:15. Well, at least the Divas got on the show. Gotta push that Total Divas show. Also a cooldown for the next match.
Backstage, Ryback, or Bully Ry gives some guy in catering a hard time.
Cut to the announce table as we preview Best vs. Beast.
Match 5: Brock Lesnar defeated CM Punk in a no disqualification match at 25:27. Holy. Shit. This match was BRUTAL, you guys. Punk bit Lesnar in the ear. HE BIT BROCK LESNAR IN THE EAR! IN THE EAR! Punk had it wrapped up twice, once with the GTS, and again with the Anaconda Vice, but Paul Heyman broke it up both times. Heyman got Viced when Lesnar went berserk on Punk, finishing with it an F-5 on the steel chair.
Cut to Summerslam Axxess where a fan attending a house show Friday night made a deal to trade in his two tickets for VIP seats at Summerslam--but only if he got splashed by Mark Henry. Took it like a champ though.
Match 6: Dolph Ziggler and Kaitlyn defeated Big E Langston and AJ Lee in a mixed tag team match at 6:45.Kaitlyn killed AJ with a spear, followed by Ziggler counting the Big Ending with the Zig Zag. Another cooldown match that served its cooldown purpose.
Miz runs down the show, and is interrupted by Fandango... again. Miz, tired of Fandango's shit, lays him out. Back to the expert panel. Shawn Michaels and Vickie Guerrero got Daniel Bryan, Booker T has John Cena. A pre-match promo package leads us to our MAIN EVENT.
Match 7: Daniel Bryan defeated John Cena in 26:55 to win the WWE Championship. Hell of a match for both guys. Bryan killed Cena with the running knee to the face. TO THE FACE! Confetti rains down as special referee Triple H hands Daniel Bryan Danielson the title belt. Congratulations all around. Post-match, Randy Orton makes his way down with his Money in the Bank briefcase. Cash in? Nope, as Orton walks away and decides to let D-Bry have his moment.
Then Triple H for some reason Pedigrees Daniel Bryan. Oh, now Randy comes down there and cashes in his Money in the Bank briefcase. THE HEEL TURNS!
UNADVERTISED Match 8: Randy Orton defeated Daniel Bryan in just eight seconds to win the WWE Championship. Well... that was depressing.
EDDIE MAC'S QUICK REVIEW
Yeah... so that ending. It hurts. It hurts so bad. I... I can't even with this ending, even with the knowledge of what came seven excruciating months later. Honestly, the time between Summerslam 2013 and Wrestlemania XXX may have been the most angst-ridden WWE fans have been in recent memory (until you get to the period after that). But a good compelling story will do that.
As for the show, it's damn good. The two main events more than deliver, and quite frankly, that's all of this show that I would consider required viewing. Sure you can watch the whole thing, but you'll probably fast forward to Lesnar-Punk. And I can't blame you. Just on the main events alone, I give this show a strong 9 out of 10. If it ended with Daniel winning the title, it's a perfect score.
BONUS! Here's the live blog from the night of the show way back in 2013. And the next morning recap from the General himself.