Welcome to PWInsider.com's live, ongoing coverage of the WWE Extreme Rules 2015 PPV from The Allstate Arena in Chicago, IL!
Extreme Rules Kickoff Show
Renee Young welcomed everyone to the show as the steel cage was seen hanging above the Allstate Arena. The pre-show panel was Young, Byron Saxton, Corey Graves and WWE Hall of Famer Booker T. They put over that this was Extreme Rules, so anything could happen. The panel began to preview the lineup for the PPV.
They went to a medical update on WWE Intercontinental champion Daniel Bryan, noting that he is not medically cleared to wrestle, so instead Bad News Barrett will face Neville on the Kickoff show.
They went to Tom Phillips in the "social media lounge" as they pushed fans to interact with the company on those platforms. They announced Kane would be responding to questions later on. This led to the panel discussing Kane's role as the "Keeper of the Gate" and aired a video feature on Randy Orton vs. Seth Rollins at the PPV.
The panel discussed the WWE World Heavyweight championship match. Booker said it brings the future to the forefront. Saxton said Orton wants to rebound after a "year of injustice." Booker said this was the most important bout of Rollins' title reign. In the background, the fans chanted "New Day Sucks!" Graves predicted Reigns while Saxton and Booker predicted a new champion would be crowned tonight.
The panel discussed the WWE Divas championship bout and went to footage of Naomi attacking Paige and "injuring her" in the UK in Raw. They went backstage, where Eden interviewed Naomi. Naomi was asked if she got her title shot because she dropped the nice girl "persona." Naomi said she was going to stop trying to fit into a mold of who she isn't really and will take what is hers, the Divas champonship. She said she didn't like the holier than thou attitude Eden was giving her. She said Eden wouldn't be where she is without taking risks and said she probably stepped on someone else and tonight, Naomi will do the same.
The panel discussed Naomi's recent actions. Booker compared her to Melina back in the day and said that everyone hated Melina. They were interupted by Dean Ambrose, who had a mic. Ambrose replaced Saxton and said he was going to be the new host, putting over that he was in Chicago. He said he came here to fight. The crowd chanted, "CM Punk" in response to Ambrose mentioning Chicago. Ambrose said he was powerbombed through a ladder at Wrestlemania but he has vivid memories of getting 12 staples in the back of his head. They showed clips of his brawls with Luke Harper as he spoke to build the Chicago Street Fight. Ambrose said he was going to fight among the people and promised to put Harper through the panel's table later tonight in Chicago.
The panel discussed the Sheamus vs. Dolph Ziggler bout and they showed clips of Sheamus' attack in recent weeks on different talents. The panel discussed Sheamus' change in attitude since returning. Graves wondered if there was jealousy on Sheamus' end over how beloved Dolph Ziggler is and how successful Daniel Bryan has become.
They pushed Tough Enough and promoted how one could enter into the competition. They've had 4,000 entries already.
The panel began discussing the Last Man Standing bout and went to a video feature on Big Show vs. Roman Reigns tonight. Another "CM Punk" chant started as the panel spoke about Show and Reigns. Booker said Show is at the best part of his career and is relishing his career.
Bray Wyatt suddenly showed up with another promo. He addressed someone and said that while others are happy to be mundane, they have a singular focus. Bray said he had the secret to life and through him, they will understand that a man cannot become a God but a God can walk amongst men. The panel acted confused and wondered who he might be addressing. Renee said they may learn who he's speaking about tonight. Graves said that we'll know when Wyatt wants everyone to know.
They went to ringside. The WWE announce team welcomed everyone.
Bad News Barrett vs. Neville
Barrett cut a promo noting that Daniel Bryan wasn't cleared to wrestle and wasn't even in Chicago. Barrett took credit for it and said Bryan is terrified of losing the Intercontinental championship to him. Barrett said that since he's known as the "UK version of Michael Jordan" minus the gambling addiction, so he offered to wrestle Neville. Big pop for Neville's name. The crowd started to chant for him before his entrance.
There was a sizable "NXT" chant at the bell. They locked up and Barrett used a shoulderblock to enforce his will and show his power. The crowd chanted, "Let's go Neville!" Neville went for a hiptoss but Barrett blocked it and went for his own. Neville reversed it into an inside cradle for a two count. Barrett kicked out and stomped Neville into the corner.
Neville used all his acrobatics to keep Barrett off-balance and nailed a bodypress for a two count. Barrett was sent to the apron and dropkicked off. He went for a springboard move but had his legs taken out from under him. Barrett tossed him hard into the barricade.
They aired a commercial for all the new programming that will be kicking off this week, including the Jerry Springer-hosted "Too Hot for TV." I have an interview with Springer up now in the Elite section. They announced a WWE 24 episode on Roman Reigns for May.
Back in the ring, Barrett controlled Neville with a side chinlock on the mat. Neville tried to fight back but was cut off for another two count. Barrett placed him across the turnbuckles, measured and kicked him hard in the gut. Neville was locked back into the chinlock. He fought his way out and kicked Barrett as he rebounded off the ropes. Neville tried to mount some offense but was cut off with a big boot for a two count.
Barrett used a springboard back suplex into a backbreaker across the knee, then went back to the chinlock, trying to wear Neville down. Neville fought to his feet, began blocking punches and nailed several kicks and a low dropkick. Neville began unloading the offense, culminating with a leaping, twisting dive to the floor on Barrett. The crowd chanted "NXT."
Neville tossed Barrett back inside the ring and nailed a back suplex with a bridge for a two count. Neville went to the ropes but Barrett cut him off. Neville rebounded off the ropes but was caught with the Black Hole Slam for a close two count. Barrett went for Wasteland but Neville slipped out and went for another back suplex. Barrett drilled him with an elbow. They battled in the corner. Barrett caught Neville wit Wasteland as he leapt into the ring but Neville kicked up, which the live crowd loved.
Barrett set up for the Bullhammer. Neville ducked and nailed an enziguri, then ascended to the top for the Red Arrow. Barrett recovered in time and crotched Neville on the top. Neville ducked a Bullhammer and drilled him with a stiff kick to the head. Neville went back to the top and this time, successfully nailed The Red Arrow for the pin.
Your winner, Neville!
Good opener. Barrett worked over Neville for a long time so that by the time Neville got the win, you felt like he had earned it. I thought Michael Cole saying it was an upset win actually hurt the credibility of the win, especially since earlier they were saying Neville was one of the most decorated NXT champions ever. That aside, a nice way to kick off the show.
Tom Phillips gave Kane Twitter questions. The first was when the mask was coming back. Kane said that wasn't his focus. The second was whether Kane was still relevant. Kane said he didn't have time for this and was offended, walking off.
They went to a video feature on John Cena vs. Rusev in a Russian Chain Match. The panel discussed who would have the advantage in this match. They pretty much agreed Rusev would be fearsome in this situation, but Graves said that Cena has a ton of momentum. He predicted Cena would retain. Booker played to the crowd and they chanted for him.
WWE EXTREME RULES 2015 PPV
Chicago Street Fight: Dean Ambrose vs. Luke Harper
Ambrose attacked Harper in the aisle as he made his way to the ring. As it should be, it's a Streetfight! They brawled around ringside. Ambrose hit a tope suicida to the floor and then sent Harper into the steel stairs at ringside. Ambrose tossed some chairs into the ring and grabbed a Singapore Cane. He caned Harper over and over and beat him down to his knees. Harper fought back and used the Cane to unload on Ambrose.
Harper wedged a chair between the turnbuckles and went to grab Ambrose, who was on the top rope. Dean went for a tornado DDT but was tossed off. Ambrose was sent face-first into the chair for a two count. Harper went back to the strategy of beating Ambrose with the cane and then slammed him. He retrieved the chair from the buckles and tossed it down on the mat for future use, but was caught and slammed onto it by Ambrose.
Ambrose sent Harper out and caught him with a tornado DDT. They battled back and forth as the crowd chanted for Tables. Ambrose went for the rebound lariat but was cut off. Ambrose sent Harper to the outside and went for another dive. Harper caught him and sent him into the ropes. Ambrose rebounded and caught him with a clothesline. He beat Harper all the way up the aisle and into the backstage area. He ent Harper into some rigging equipment in the backstage area, then slammed a case on wheels into him.
They battled into another area, where Harper slammed Ambrose with some catering equipment. He climbed into a car near the ramp that wrestlers enter and exit and tried to put on his seatbelt to steal the car and leave. Ambrose dove into the car. It drove out of the building into Chicago.
The announcers wondered if this means the match continues as the crowd chanted for CM Punk. A fun opening brawl and obviously, we haven't seen the last of these two.
Backstage, Triple H told Kane to track down Luke Harper and Dean Ambrose because they are loose on the streets of Chicago. It'd be hilarious if they end up at the comic convention CM Punk is signing at. Seth Rollins showed up and HHH told them they needed to get on the same page. Rollins questioned his actions at Smackdown where he was tossed into a Roman Reigns spear. Kane said he was protecting him and he's been acting like an ungrateful Punk since his won the title. HHH told them to calm down and said Seth does have a point. HHH said Kane has spent a lot of time lately (you know, like the last two weeks) trying to prove to the world he is the man he used to be. HHH said he doesn't want anything to fall between the cracks and that he won't regret making Kane the gatekeeper. The live audience was chanting "Boring" and they killed or muted the crowd audio. Kane promised he would do what's best for business.
Kiss My Arse Match: Dolph Ziggler vs. Sheamus
Big reaction for Ziggler's entrance. Sheamus tried to menace Ziggler, who went right after him with a right hand and showed some fire early, working him over in the corner with kicks and a headbutt. Sheamus was stunned with a dropkick and they ended up going through the ropes to the floor. Sheamus sent Ziggler into the stairs but Ziggler came back with a leaping DDT off the stairs onto the floor.
Back in the ring, Sheamus cut off Ziggler with a big knee to the face. He followed up with another kneelift. Sheamus worked over Ziggler and locked on a chinlock. Ziggler fought back and went for the Famouser but was caught with a sit-down powerbomb for a two count. The crowd chanted, "Let's go Ziggler."
Sheamus drilled Ziggler back down, then pulled him up and nailed a short-arm clothesline. He screamed that "Little Fellas" don't belong in his ring and cinched in another side chinlock, really clenching it in and yanking Dolph back and forth. The referee checked Ziggler's arms but he came back to life. He fought back and finally scored a series of rights to escape. Ziggler ducked a clothesline and nailed a big right hand. Ziggler nailed a Stinger Splash but was cut off with a clothesline as he rebounded off the ropes.
Ziggler went for a superkick but was caught and turned into the Texas Cloverleaf. Ziggler slipped out from underneath and rolled up Sheamus for a nice near fall, then nailed a superkick for another two count. Good stuff. Ziggler, showing some damage to his knee, was unable to mount any real offense and was caught in a tilt-o-whirl backbreaker for a two count.
Sheamus slammed Ziggler with authority. Ziggler rolled him up and hooked the tights for a two count. Ziggler caught Sheamus with an inside cradle out of a suplex attempt and scored the pin.
Your winner, Dolph Ziggler!
A good match that had some really nice near falls towards the end. I think they could have used a little more time but for what they had, it was good and the finish was a surprise since Sheamus has just returned and been pushed so hard.
Sheamus refused to accept he was pinned and told the timekeeper to ring the bell to restart the match. The referee told him that he's lost and to get in the ring and do it. The crowd chanted, "Pucker Up", which was pretty funny. Sheamus was disgusted and tried to walk out but was stopped by the official. Ziggler slid the back of his tights down. He told Sheamus this was his match and his idea. Sheamus got down to do it but refused and backed away. Sheamus tried to get out of doing the deed but Ziggler demanded he do it. The crowd was all over him chanting and got really loud. Sheamus put his hands over his face and dropped to his knees. Ziggler said he didn't want this, but Sheamus did, so it's on Sheamus. Ziggler lowblowed Ziggler from behind, pulled him up and nailed him with a vicious Brogue Kick.
Sheamus called for a ring mic and asked Ziggler if he really thought Sheamus was going to kiss his ass. He said that he promised the world that Ziggler would kiss his arse and he never wanted to disappoint. He pulled his tights up and rubbed Ziggler's face in his bare ass. As a way to get some real heat on Sheamus and show what a piece of garbage he is, this was great plus it conceivably puts Ziggler into a position where he can chase and feud with Sheamus to redeem his dignity. Good stuff.
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COVERAGE CONTINUES ON PAGE 2!
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