WWE Payback 2015
May 17, 2015
Royal Farms, Arena
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WWE Payback Kickoff Show:
Renee Young welcomed viewers to the show while a shot aired of fans entering the building. Renee was joined at the desk set up on the arena floor by Booker T, Corey Graves, and Byron Saxton. After the hosts were finishing pimping the free month of the network for new subscribers and the Payback main event, Eden Stiles interviewed Dolph Ziggler. He said tonight isn’t about him stealing the show, it’s about getting payback on Sheamus. Tom Phillips checked in from the social media lounge, which appropriately was a black room with one man and a television. He said Sheamus would be stopping by but failed to mention that Sheamus drew the short straw. A video focussed on the I Quit match. Young noted that John Cena has never lost an I Quit match before. The panel spoke about the match. An Elimination Chamber commercial aired. A video recap of Daniel Bryan’s appearance on Raw was shown.
Backstage, Eden interviewed The Bella Twins and asked Brie how Daniel is doing. She said it’s been tough, but Daniel is a warrior and has more heart than anyone. She spoke about how he is her biggest inspiration and she loves him more than anything. Nikki handled the promo about their tag match, and said she and Brie are real family, and Naomi would run out of excuses.The panel spoke about the Divas tag match as Jerry Lawler’s entrance music played in the background. Renee said Tamina and Naomi have a family connection, but it’s not the same as the Bella Twins. Booker said he has twins who are “on the same level” always.
First Match: R-Truth vs. Stardust
They start the match and go to the corner before breaking. Truth plays to the crowd and Stardust shoves him. Truth shoves back. They trade slaps. They stall some more and Truth nails a big right hand. Truth with a couple of arm drags and more playing to the crowd. Stardust tries to take control but Truth taunts him some more. Stardust runs into an elbow and goes to the apron for a breather. He tries to fight back in but Truth stops him. Stardust drops Truth over the top rope and he ends up on the floor.
Stardust takes control in the ring now. He slams Truth’s head into the turnbuckles until the referee backs him off. Stardust with more offense in the corner. Stardust misses a dropkick and Truth covers for a two count. Stardust comes right back with a clothesline. More back and forth. Truth slams Stardust on his face. Stardust comes back and hits a nice springboard kick for a close two count. Stardust with stomps and kicks now. Truth runs into a clothesline. More back and forth. Stardust slaps Truth with his glove but Truth looks to make a comeback. Truth with right hands before dropping Stardust on his face for the win.
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 79/100 C+
Second Match: The Ascension vs. The Mega Powers
Konnor starts with Axel and works him over. Axel starts hulking up already. He does the finger point and fires away with right hands on Konnor. Konnor runs into the big boot and Axel hits the leg drop for a two count as Viktor breaks the pin. Viktor also knocks Sandow off the apron. Konnor stomps on Axel and tags in Viktor to keep up the attack. They do another quick tag and keep Axel in their corner. Viktor comes back in and keeps up the attack for a two count. Viktor with a headlock now. Sandow gets the tag and unloads on Viktor. Konnor runs in but Axel pulls the rope down, sending him to the floor. Sandow slams Viktor and goes up top for the big elbow drop. Konnor decks Axel and knocks Sandow off the top. Konnor tags in and they hit Fall of Man on Sandow for the win.
Winner: The Ascension
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 73/100 C
First Match: Sheamus vs. Dolph Ziggler
They go at it and Ziggler nails a dropkick. Ziggler knocks Sheamus over the top and it looks like Sheamus injures his knee. Ziggler takes the knee out and brings Sheamus back in. Ziggler keeps control and goes to the top for a crossbody for two count. Sheamus scoops Ziggler up but Ziggler counters for a two count. Sheamus runs over Ziggler with a forearm and tries to slow down the pace some. Ziggler comes right back and counters again but misses a superkick. Sheamus nails a big elbow on the knee. Ziggler goes to the floor clutching his knee now. Sheamus keeps control and works Ziggler’s leg over inside the ring now. Sheamus with more offense and a close two count. Sheamus kicks Ziggler around some more. Sheamus keeps Ziggler grounded with a headlock now. Ziggler fights up and drops Sheamus with a jawbreaker. Sheamus runs into an elbow and then runs into the ring post as Ziggler moves out of the way.
Ziggler makes a comeback and hits a dropkick in the corner. Ziggler with right hands as the referee counts. Ziggler goes for a neckbreaker but it’s blocked. Ziggler counters that and nails a big DDT for a close two count. Ziggler charges into the corner and hits more punches and knees. The referee backs him off again. Ziggler rubs his rear end into Sheamus’ face and Sheamus retreats to the floor in disgust. Sheamus washes out his mouth and comes back in the ring. He drops Ziggler over the top rope but misses the Brogue. Ziggler nails a Fame-asser for a close two count. Ziggler attacks in the corner and mounts Sheamus with punches but Sheamus powerbombs him for another close two count. More back and forth. Sheamus applies the Cloverleaf but Ziggler gets to the bottom rope and breaks it. More back and forth. Ziggler nails a big superkick for another close two count. Ziggler gets to his knees as Sheamus waits in the corner. Sheamus nails a Brogue kick for the win.
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 91/100 A-
Kane & Seth Rollins Backstage Segment:
Kane was speaking to someone on the phone when Seth Rollins showed up trying to clear the air and agree to get along. They each reviewed what the other has done to the other since Wrestlemania. Kane said he doesn’t need his job so he doesn’t need to make sure Rollins retains tonight. Kane said he doesn’t know what he’s going to do tonight but promises Rollins he will be the first to know when he makes a decision. Rollins warned Kane that if he does anything to Rollins, losing his job will be the least of his concerns. J&J Security tried to menace Kane which looked completely ridiculous. Kane laughed at that.
Josh’s Grade for this Segment/Storyline: 89/100 B+
Second Match: Two out of Three Falls Match for the WWE Tag Team Championship
The New Day (c) w/Xavier Woods vs. Tyson Kidd & Cesaro w/Natalya
Kidd starts out for his team and rolls Kofi up for a two count. Cesaro tags in and they double team Kofi for a pin attempt. Kofi slides out of a slam and tags in Big E. They lock up and run the ropes. Big E tries to leap but Cesaro catches him in mid-air with a big slam for a two count. Big E catches Cesaro next and presses him high for a big slam. Big E takes Cesaro to the middle rope as Woods talks trash at ringside and gets in a cheap shot. Kofi comes back in for some double teaming but Cesaro turns it around and drops them both. Cesaro stomps on Kofi and Big E as fans cheer. Cesaro suplexes Kofi and holds him in the air while tagging in Kidd. Kidd goes to the top and brings Kofi down from the suplex for a close two count as Big E breaks the pin. Cesaro sends Big E to the floor. Cesaro tags back in as Kidd catapults Kofi into a chokeslam from Cesaro. Cesaro does the Cesaro Swing and Kidd comes in for the sudden stop dropkick. Kidd covers for the first fall.
Woods argues with the referee about getting in the match under Freebird rules but the ref won’t allow him in. Natalya takes down Woods at ringside. Big E ends up on the floor. Kidd leaps out onto him but Big E catches him and hits a big overhead throw on the floor. Cesaro comes and checks on Kidd now. They come back in the ring and Big E stomps away on Kidd. Kofi tags in for more stomping. They make more quick tags and stomp away on Kidd. Kofi drops Kidd again and covers for a two count. Fans chant for Kidd but Kofi stops him from tagging. Big E comes in and keeps Kidd in a bear hug. Kidd breaks it and goes for a tag but Big E stops him, throwing Kidd on the mat. Big E runs the ropes and splashes Kidd. He covers for a two count but Cesaro breaks the pin. Big E ends up spearing Cesaro off the apron into the barrier. Big E comes back in and tags Kofi. Kofi with a two count on Kidd. Fans chant “this is awesome” and Woods says they are well aware. Kofi comes off the top but Kidd catches him on the way down. Cesaro is still on the floor down as Kidd looks for the tag. Big E comes in but Kidd rolls him up for two count. Kidd takes out Kofi and fights Big E off but Big E catches him on his shoulder. Kofi tags in for the double team move for a three count. The New Day has the second fall.
Cesaro is still down as Kidd starts the next fall with Big E. They keep control and Big E nails another big overhead throw. Fans chant “New Day sucks” as Kidd hits a drop toe hold but still has no one to tag in. Cesaro finally gets a hot tag and unloads on Kofi. Cesaro whips Kofi back and forth from corner to corner and hits an uppercut each time as fans pop. Cesaro presses Kofi high and throws him into Big E when he runs in. Cesaro goes for a big powerbomb on Big E but can’t hit it. Cesaro hits a big running uppercut in the corner for a two count. Kofi runs into a boot and in comes Kidd. Cesaro with a backbreaker as Kidd follows up with an elbow for a close two count. Kidd goes for a Sharpshooter on Kofi and gets it locked in as Natalya looks on. Cesaro runs around the ring and tosses Big E over the announce table. The Sharpshooter is broken as Cesaro returns to the corner. They do a nice double team counter and Cedro tags in. Kidd drops Kofi into a big uppercut from Cesaro but in comes Big E. Big E unloads but Cesaro takes him out with a boot. The referee is distracted as Xavier Woodsruns in and rolls Cesaro up. The referee turns around, doesn’t realize it’s Woods and counts the pin for the win.
Winner: Still WWE Tag Team Champions The New Day 2-1
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 96/100 A
Third Match: Bray Wyatt vs. Ryback
Ryback starts the match quickly and lands a volley of punches. Ryback ducks a clothesline and hits a Thesz press. Wyatt scampers out of the ring, but Ryback follows and whips him into the barrier. Ryback rolls Wyatt back into the ring and drives him into the corner. Wyatt hits the ropes and connects with a running back elbow shot to finally take control. Wyatt chokes Ryback across the second rope, drags him to the middle of the ring, and locks in a rear chin lock. Ryback breaks the hold and charges at Wyatt, but Wyatt side steps him, causing Ryback to slam shoulder-first into the ring post. Wyatt drags Ryback onto the ring apron and DDTs him right on the apron. Wyatt hits a senton off the ring apron onto Ryback on the floor. Ryback is really selling the rib damage from the senton. Wyatt rolls back into the ring, and Ryback just barely makes it back in before the count of ten.
Wyatt splashes Ryback in the corner and goes for mounted punches, but Ryback lifts Wyatt into a powerbomb. Wyatt charges Ryback but eats a power slam. Wyatt rolls out of the ring, but Ryback gives chase. Ryback charges Wyatt, but Wyatt catches him with a stiff clothesline. Wyatt rolls Ryback back into the ring and suplexes him halfway across the ring. Ryback catches Wyatt with a splash in the corner and follows up with a spinebuster for a two count. Ryback sets up for Shell Shocked, but Wyatt muscles him to the corner and takes him up top. Ryback head butts Wyatt back down to the mat, and Ryback does a top rope splash onto Wyatt for a two count. Ryback is still selling the rib damage from the senton on the outside earlier in the match, so that top rope splash may not have been the best tactical decision. Wyatt tries to sneak in a Sister Abigail, but Ryback tries to counter into Shell Shocked, but Wyatt grabs the top rope to counter. Wyatt drives Ryback into the corner to continue the rib damage and follows up with Sister Abigail for the three count.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 86/100 B
Fourth Match: “I Quit” Match for the WWE United States Championship
John Cena (c) vs. Rusev w/Lana
Rusev grabs the microphone from the referee. “John Cena, half of these people already hate you. Do yourself a favor, swallow your American pride, and say the words, ‘I quit’ now. I will spare you the pain.” The referee asks Cena if he wants to quit, but Cena simply charges at Rusev. Rusev lands a side kick to the back and drops Cena. Rusev splashes Cena in the corner two times. The crowd chants for Lana, so Rusev makes her sit in a chair next to the announce table. Rusev heads back into the ring but walks right into a suplex from Cena. Cena charges Rusev in the corner, but Rusev side steps him. Rusev head butts Cena and stomps on his back. Rusev drags Cena back to his feet only to drop him with a single punch. Rusev heads butts Cena and delivers a double ax handle to the back. Rusev drags Cena back to his feet, punches him to the ropes, and catches him with a big drop kick on the rebound. The referee asks Cena if he wants to quit, but Cena says no. Cena gets back to his feet and levels Rusev with a clothesline. Rusev returns the favor with a spinning back heel kick before heading out of the ring to glare at Lana. Rusev heads back into the ring and orders Lana to hand him the Russian flag. Rusev waves the flag in the ring before returning it to Lana on the outside. Rusev’s showmanship gives Cena the time he needs to recover and hits a running shoulder tackle. Cena follows up with the Protobomb and the Five Knuckle Shuffle, but Rusev counters the Attitude Adjustment into a fallaway slam and sends Cena tumbling out of the ring.
Rusev follows Cena to the outside and whips Cena into the ring steps. Rusev rolls Cena back into the ring and slides the lower half of the ring steps in behind him. Rusev sets up the steps in the corner and whips Cena into them. The referee keeps asking Cena if he wants to quit, and Cena keeps refusing. Rusev again whips Cena into the steps, but Cena isn’t ready to quit just yet. Rusev sets the steps in the middle of the ring and climbs up onto them, but Cena back drops Rusev off the steps. Cena rallies with a volley of punches, but Rusev catches Cena with a spinning side slam right onto the steps. Rusev goes for a stomp on Rusev’s back, but Cena rolls off an hits an Attitude Adjustment right onto the steps. Rusev rolls out of the ring, but Cena lifts the steps and launches them over the top rope toward Rusev. Rusev ducks out of the way, just avoiding being decapitated. Cena charges out of the ring and slams Rusev’s head into the ring post. Cena props up Rusev on the barrier, gives him one more chance to quit, and then drives him straight through the barrier. Cena heads out into the crowd and retrieves an equipment case from the technical area. Cena tries to roll the equipment case into Rusev, but Rusev hits a super kick of the equipment case. Rusev beats Cena across the technical area. Cena goes for an Attitude Adjustment through a table, but Rusev counters into an Alabama Slamma onto the table Cena props up a table next to the guard rail and drops a monitor onto Rusev’s back. Cena drives a laptop onto Rusev’s back, and Rusev is writhing in pain. Cena goes for an Attitude Adjustment through the propped up table, but again Rusev counters into an Alabama Slamma through it. Rusev grabs a pyro cable and realizes he can use the pyros as a weapon. Cena ducks a side kick and hits an Attitude Adjustment right onto the pyros. The pyros go off, and Rusev limply falls to the floor. Lana rushes up the ramp to see if Rusev is still alive, but Rusev still refuses to quit.
Cena grabs a metal guard rail and drives it right into Rusev’s face. Cena beats Rusev back down the ramp to ringside, but Rusev still refuses to quit. Cena props up the metal guard rail on the ring apron and goes for an Attitude Adjustment, but Rusev counters into a suplex on the guard rail. Cena’s body damn near fold the guard rail in half. Rusev rolls Cena into the ring, hits a side kick, stomps on the back, and locks in the Accolade in the middle of the ring. Cena gets his legs under him, lifts Rusev, and drives him into the corner, but Rusev refuses to break the hold. Cena again drive Rusev into the corner, but Rusev still maintains the hold. Cena falls back to the mat, and Rusev has the Accolade locked in deep. Cena is unconscious and unable to indicate whether or not he wants to quit, so Rusev breaks the hold in celebration. The referee explains that the match is not over, because Cena did not actually quit. Rusev removes the top turnbuckle in one of the corners and frees the top ring rope. Rusev tries to drive the ring rope into Cena, but Cena ducks and locks in the STF using the ring rope. Rusev starts screaming in Bulgarian but refuses to quit. Lana can’t take any more, so she jumps into the ring, grabs the mic, and screams that Rusev quits.
Winner: Still WWE United States Champion John Cena
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 94/100 A
Fifth Match: The Bella Twins vs. Naomi & Tamina Snuka
Naomi and Nikki go at it to start the match. Naomi unloads in the corner but Nikki drops her with a springboard kick for a two count. Brie comes in and drops Naomi for a two count. Brie with more offense and a knee to drop Naomi against the ropes. Brie with the running knee to the face as she sends Naomi to the floor. Brie rolls her back in but Naomi distracts the referee and Tamina hits a big kick on the apron, sending Brie back to the floor. Naomi brings Brie back in for a two count. Naomi keeps control and keeps Brie down. She stands on Brie’s hair and stomps her some more. Naomi with more offense and a one count as she pins Brie with her foot.
Naomi whips Brie into the corner and tags in Tamina to keep up the beatdown. Brie tries to fight back with kicks but Tamina rams her into the corner. Naomi comes back in and beats on Brie some more. Naomi drops Brie for a two count. Nikki finally gets the tag and hits a dropkick. Nikki unloads on Naomi and covers for a two count that Tamina breaks up. Nikki ends up kicking Tamina out of the ring but Naomi rolls her up from behind for two count. Tamina distracts Nikki from the apron. Nikki turns around and takes a Rear View for a close two count. Brie takes out Tamina on the floor. More back and forth in the ring now. Nikki with another big slam and a close two count. Nikki goes to the top. Tamina slams Brie into the barrier, distracting Nikki on the top. Naomi takes advantage and slams her from the top for the win.
Winner: Naomi & Tamina Snuka
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 71/100 C-
Sixth Match: King Bad News Barrett vs. Neville
Neville landing an early roll up. Neville comes back with a crossbody and a head scissors that sends Barrett to the floor to regroup. Neville follows and connects with a kick to the gut. Barrett with another big kick to the midsection. Barrett keeps control and brings it back in the ring, sending Neville into the ring post. Barrett with more offense in the corner and a two count. Barrett keeps Neville grounded with a headlock now. Neville fights up and tries to do a springboard but Barrett cuts him off with a boot to the face. Barrett with another pin attempt.Barrett with more offense and a knee to the back. Barrett chokes Neville with the middle rope as the referee counts. Barrett with high knees on the ropes now. Barrett knocks Neville over the top rope with a big boot. Barrett with another two count and a headlock. More back and forth as Neville makes a comeback. Barrett cuts him off with another big kick to the gut.
Barrett talks trash and readies for the Bullhammer. Neville avoids it but gets caught with Winds of Change for a close two count. Neville kicks Barrett off and comes in with a springboard. Barrett blocks it but Neville counters with an arm drag for a two count. Neville drops Barrett with an enziguri and positions him in front of the corner. Neville goes up for Red Arrow but Barrett rolls out to the floor. Neville leaps out of the ring and takes Barrett out anyway. Neville lands bad and clutches his leg. Barrett looks to make it back in at the 9 count but stops and gets counted out. After the match, Neville looks disappointed with the win. Barrett rushes back in the ring and drops Neville. Barrett tosses him over the top rope and sends him into the steel steps. Barrett tosses Neville into the barrier as fans boo. He comes back in the ring and takes his crow, scepter and robe. Neville gets up and Barrett tries to hit him with the scepter. Neville counters and hits a German suplex. Neville drags Barrett over and goes up top to nail Red Arrow.
Winner: Neville by Countout
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 89/100 B+
Seventh Match: Fatal Four Way Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Seth Rollins (c) vs. Randy Orton vs. Roman Reigns vs. Dean Ambrose
J&J get involved. It comes down to Reigns and Rollins going at it in the ring. Reigns goes for an early pin attempt. Reigns with more offense and a big right hand for another pin attempt. Rollins counters in the corner and drops Reigns’ face into the corner. Ambrose comes off the top rope with a big elbow on Reigns but Orton breaks the pin. Orton with right hands on Ambrose in the corner. Ambrose turns it around and mounts Orton with rights. Ambrose with a bulldog on Orton. They trade shots and Orton hits a backbreaker for a two count as Reigns breaks the pin. Rollins is still out on the floor. Orton and Reigns go at it now. Reigns blocks a RKO and sends Orton over the top with Ambrose. Rollins comes from behind and attacks Reigns. Reigns comes in and teams with Ambrose to double team Rollins. Reigns mounts Rollins with right hands. Ambrose with a clothesline on Rollins. Reigns readies for a Superman punch but Kane pulls him to the floor and sends him into the barrier. Kane also takes Ambrose down and sends him back into the ring for Rollins. J&J attack Orton at ringside and Kane joins in to help them. Rollins slams Ambrose for a close two count. Rollins springboards in from the apron and hits a knee to the face of Ambrose for another pin attempt. Rollins slaps Ambrose around now.
More offense and a pin attempt from Ambrose but he hangs in as Rollins gets frustrated. Rollins stomps away on Ambrose now. Rollins goes for a powerbomb again but Ambrose fights out. Rollins kicks him twice. Ambrose bounces back with the slingshot suplex. Ambrose ends up going for Dirty Deeds but Kane comes in the ring and chokeslams him. The referee tells Kane to get out of the ring and he does but Rollins crawls over for a two count. Kane tries to come back in but Orton stops him. Reigns follows up with a big punch and Kane goes down. Orton clotheslines Reigns. Orton comes in the ring and sends Ambrose to the floor. He drops Rollins. Rollins blocks a powerslam. Orton blocks a move in the corner and hits a big t-bone suplex for a two count. Rollins goes to the top but Orton crotches him. Orton climbs up and nails a superplex for a two count. Orton with a clothesline on the floor. Orton back drops Rollins on the barrier. Orton takes apart the announce table. Ambrose comes over and Orton fights him over also. Reigns comes over and sends Orton into the ring post. The former members of The Shield stand over Orton and look around at each other. Orton fights them off but they beat him down like old times. They grab Orton and hit the triple powerbomb through the table, just like they used to. The crowd pops and all three pose together. Rollins starts laughing but Ambrose and Reigns are laughing at him, not with him. They turn and beat Rollins down. Ambrose and Reigns take apart the Spanish announce table. They go to put Rollins through it but Kane makes the save. They send Kane into the ring post and here comes Rollins to help Kane. Rollins ends up on the Spanish announce table on his back. Ambrose and Reigns lift Kane up and powerbomb him on top of Rollins and the Spanish announce table. Kane’s back landed awkwardly and fans chant “one more time” for another powerbomb. Ambrose and Reigns lift Kane again and this time the powerbomb onto Rollins breaks the table for another big pop.
The crowd goes nuts as Ambrose and Reigns have some friendly words about doing what they have to do next. They both enter the ring and meet in the middle. Fans chant for Ambrose and he strikes first. They trade shots in the middle of the ring. Reigns misses a Superman punch and Reigns tackles him with punches. Reigns with a roll up for two count. Reigns with a powerbomb for two count. Reigns smiles at Ambrose and has some words for him about what’s coming. Reigns readies for a Superman punch but it’s blocked. Ambrose with a roll up for two count. Reigns hits the Superman punch for a close two count. Reigns goes for a spear but it’s blocked with a kick. Reigns blocks Dirty Deeds. Ambrose misses the bounce back clothesline. Reigns nails a spear for two count as Rollins barely breaks the pin.J&J attack Reigns on the floor but he fights them off and sends them into the barrier. Reigns follows Rollins back in the ring but gets kicked before making it in. Ambrose and Rollins go at it. Reigns with a Superman punch. Ambrose hits Dirty Deeds on Rollins. Ambrose covers Rollins but Kane pulls Ambrose to the floor. Kane drops Ambrose with a steel steps shot to the head. Reigns comes over but Kane hits him in the head with the steps also. Kane chokeslams Reigns on the steps. Reigns comes over and takes Kane down. There is carnage at ringside as fans chant for the RKO. Orton comes to the apron but Rollins brings him with a draping DDT attempt. Orton turns it around and nails the second rope draping DDT. Mercury and Noble interfere but both take RKOs. Rollins comes off the top but Orton catches him in a powerslam. Orton keeps control and fans pop. Orton readies for the RKO but it’s blocked. Kane comes in and takes the RKO. Rollins grabs Orton and hits a Pedigree for the win.We get replays and come back to Rollins on the ground clutching the WWE World Heavyweight Title. Triple H comes out and helps Rollins up on the entrance way. Triple H raises Rollins’ arm.
Winner: Still WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 97/100 A+
Josh’s Grade for WWE Payback: 86/100 B
Follow Josh Lopez on Twitter @JoshLopezCSR