FROM THE REFEREE’S POSITION: “HELL IN A CELL” — THE AFTERMATH ANALYSIS

Posted October 3rd, 2011 by 1Wrestling News Team

 

By Referee Jimmy Dylan

WWE Hell In A Cell 2011 is in the books, and from where I sit, a pretty solid show was put on for the legions that make up the WWE Universe. Before I sat down to write this column, I researched fan reactions via Facebook and Twitter to get a feel for what you, the fans, felt about the pay-per-view. To be totally honest with you, I was both excited and disappointed yesterday afternoon when surfing the net for news bits and going about my usual online duties. I was excited because I felt something big would happen in the main storyline involving Triple H and his detractors, and of course the Cell matches themselves. I was disappointed in the amount of announced matches set to take place. By the end of the night, however, my feelings on the overall show were mainly positive. I understand that its become commonplace to slam WWE for their booking….or lack thereof…but I strongly believe in giving credit where it’s do. The mood on Facebook and Twitter has been somewhat of a mixed bag over the last 24 hours. Some of you like what you saw while others continued to trash the product. That’s the way its always been, and most-likely always will be. For those who are down on last night’s program, I hope I can shed some light on the subject for you.

Prior to the start of Hell In A Cell, I tweeted that I was looking forward to the pay-per-view for a number of reasons. One of the main reasons is because I am a big fan of high-arching storylines that eventually lead to “big reveals”. The current “main” angle in WWE has been misleading and confusing at times, but I think WWE has done the best they think they could to deliver the goods. Only they know how the story plays out, and it’s up to the viewers to be patient and let the angle take its course. The current state of the WWE began on June 27 when CM Punk delivered his now-infamous “worked-shoot” promo at the end of the live Raw telecast. I said then that this angle had the potential to be long term and very high-arching, and that’s exactly what its been. Sometimes it seemed as if things were happening too fast, while other times it appeared as if none of it made sense and was essentially dead in the water. After last night’s offering, I think it’s obvious that this entire ordeal is FAR from being over. (Follow me on Twitter @the1jimmydylan)

One of the best moves WWE made last night was saving the actual Hell In A Cell matches for later in the show. Much later. Get the undercard out of the way while properly building towards the money makers. Controversy arose very early with the “unexpected” arrivals of R-Truth and The Miz in the crowd before the bell could ring to start the first match. Johnny Ace (Lauriatius)

being the one leading the charge to get them abruptly removed from ringside was also fishy…especially since both fired Superstars possessed and presented tickets. You knew something was up from that point forward, and now we just had to wait to see how it would all go down.

Sheamus def. Christian:
As I mentioned, I wasn’t particularly interested in the undercard WWE presented going into last night’s broadcast. I understand what was going on between Christian and Sheamus, but I didn’t really care to see the match. Therefor, I was thoroughly pleased to see these guys come through the curtain first. The match was what it was. Nothing really special, and I hope that’s the end of this 1-on-1 feud. I’d really like to see Christian return to the main event scene where he truly belongs. As for Sheamus…uhh….right!

Sin Cara (Blue) def. Sin Cara (Black):
Even though the general consensus was that this match would be a train wreck both in the ring and on commentary, I thought it was pretty good. Definitely a good move to put the evil Sin Cara in a black suit. It obviously made it easier to tell who was who, but it lent to the dark Sin Cara persona as well. We’ve seen the Mexican Superstars run into each other over the past couple weeks, and according to Michael Cole, we would now find out who was “worthy” of wearing the Cara mask. This was your typical luchadore contest with both men putting their aerial assault skills on display in hopes of gaining a victory. The live crowd in New Orleans didn’t seem to buy it, and it wasn’t long before the “boring” chants started to be heard. The live fan reaction online wasn’t much different. I liked the idea of this feud when I first heard about it, but after seeing it make it to TV, I wasn’t so sure. The commentary during segments where both Sin Caras were on camera have been horrendous, and after sitting through a match last night, if this feud continues I think I may just mute my television or computer when it’s on. What happened in Mexico between these two over the “Mistico” name is definitely good fodder for a WWE war, just not this way. I also understand the reality of how this program came to life in the first place. The Sin Cara character “needed” a replacement when the original wrestler was suspended for failing a Wellness test. I understand WWE not wanting the character to lose steam since it had just started. I get it. I also get Hunico wanting to steal Mistico’s gimmick since the same thing was done to him south of the border. Now that Sin Cara “Black” has lost in a head-up clash, I think WWE needs to have him come out now as Hunico and let him be himself. I feel as though this story can be continued, but not this way. It’s confusing even with the change of colors, and as I said, the commentators don’t seem to have a clue how to call it, which also makes me not want to watch it. Hunico should come out as himself now, and continue. We already know their history, so let them fight. Just don’t leave me cross-eyed in the end.

Air Boom {C} def. Dolph Ziggler/Jack Swagger: (WWE Tag Team Championship)
This was one of two bonus matches set for the night. Giving their recent run-ins over the past couple weeks, it made sense. Last week on Raw, it was apparent that Vicky Guerrero was finally able to get her clients on the same page after weeks of bickering and maybe even jealousy that ultimately cost them victories in the ring. They were now united, and with the guidance of Vicky, they now posed a real threat to Air Boom’s young title reign. It wasn’t easy to predict the outcome of this one, which is always good in this business. I was looking forward to this one, and wasn’t disappointed at all. All four men put on one of the best tag team contests in recent WWE history, and that’s covering pay-per-views and weekly television. A great story was told in the ring as Vicky’s boys did everything in their power to snatch the titles. I’m not a big fan of “makeshift” tag teams, but I liked the tandem of Bourne and Kingston from the first time they teamed together. The fact that they’ve coordinated their ring gear together has made them more of a “legit” tag team, and I think they are right where they need to be right now. Therefor, I was pulling for Air Boom as I’d like to see their current push continue. Needless to say, that’s exactly what happened, and I believe that will be another reason for Hell In A Cell’s overall success when people look back at it.

Mark Henry {C} def. Randy Orton (World Heavyweight Championship/Hell In A Cell:
I was probably one of the happiest to see Mark Henry finally get his push recently, and it culminated two weeks ago at Night of Champions when he won his first World Heavyweight championship. After 15 years, Henry was given the ball and told to run with it, and did he ever! Everything he’s been doing lately has been great. He’s restored the “heel” to what it truly should be. It’s good to see years of hard work and dedication pay off. Mark Henry has had to deal with countless injuries that have kept him out of the game at times, amongst the many other political issues that can get in ones way. He has stuck through it all, and for it he is legitimately deserving of the spot he’s in. The same cannot be said for many other champions, both now and in recent years. It goes without saying that I wanted to see Henry continue his reign of terror at Hell In A Cell and remain atop the mountain on Smackdown. We’ve all seen Orton with the title and its started to get old. I like Orton, and really do not want to see him join the unwanted company of John Cena. Henry’s overall story as an unstoppable monster has been well told. On the flip side of the coin, Orton remained a worthy opponent, and not just because this was his mandatory rematch. “The Viper” has gone on record to tell us about his mental sickness that allows him to do ungodly things to his opponents. It was presented that he could not apply the RKO to the “World’s Strongest Man”, and even when he finally did last Friday on Smackdown, it only seemed to daze the World champ at best. It was obvious that Orton would have to go the darkest corner of his demented mind to pull out a victory and regain the title. Orton came out strong, but no matter what he did, he couldn’t keep the big man down. The match played out exactly how I thought it would. Orton took his licks and fought through to hit his RKO towards the end. When Henry kicked out, it was clear that Orton’s only hope was to execute his vicious punt to the head. Henry was well prepared, and was able to thwart the attack. The champ’s series of moves that concentrated on Orton’s back led to a single World’s Strongest Slam to end the war. Hats off to WWE for not adding Mark Henry to the list of “transitional champions” that we’ve seen in the past. I hope they keep the title on him for a long time to come.

Cody Rhodes {C} def. John Morrison: (Impromtu Intercontinental Title Match)
This was by far one of the highlights of the night for me, and apparently for many others watching the program. Surprisingly enough, the highlight wasn’t the match itself. Considering Cody’s opponent, the promo before the match was even more of a highlight. I think the paper bag thing has run its coarse with Cody, and I also find it difficult at times to listen to his promos. But when he dropped the IC title in the bag last night, I was instantly excited. The velvet bag obviously meant a new belt, and I was all for that. I never expected to see Cody pull a scaled down remake of the classic white IC title out of the bag. I couldn’t believe it, but I loved it. The crowd in the New Orleans Arena voiced their approval with what I truly believe was the loudest pop of the night up until that point. That’s sad and funny at the same time, but I still loved it. However, there was one hold in Cody’s explanation for resurrecting the vintage strap. When talking about people who potentially “tarnished” any given championship, Chyna’s name should never be mentioned. The “9th Wonder of the World” was a trendsetter and made mountains of history in WWE. For that, she WILL one day be inducted into the Hall of Fame, and in all fairness should get her own wing! Thumbs down to Cody for placing Chyna on his list of competitors that should have never won the IC title. Johnny Ace comes out to inform Cody that despite him being dressed for combat, he was being ordered by TripleH to defend his title for the third time in less than a week. I was cool with that, but the choice of opponent cheapened this whole segment. Due to the way Morrison has been booked recently, no one cares about him at the moment. I, like a lot of other people, didn’t see Rhodes’ title reign ending just yet. The backstage heat Morrison carries from Malina’s relationship and departure from WWE made him more less-likely to win here. It was no surprise to see Cody retain.

*What happened next definitely added to the conspiracy and secrets going on within WWE. We see Triple H talking on the phone when John Laurinitis quickly approach. Trips was pissed at Ace about continuing to make matches without permission, but Ace had bigger issues on his mind. He apologized before informing the COO that Air Boom was being attacked. The execs rushed to the spot where the tag champs were laid out and being beaten by Awesome Truth…who were ejected from the front row at the beginning of the night. They were able to get away here, but Triple H was irate. He yelled at Ace for not having proper security while A-Ry and Ezekial Jackson helped the champs. But wait, how did Miz and Truth get backstage to begin with? Isn’t it funny that Johnny Ace was the one to come get Triple H? Hmmmm…..

Beth Phoenix def. Kelly Kelly {C}: (Divas Championship)
Another highlight of the night came late in the show in this Divas championship bout. It was an absolute atrocity to not put the title on Beth Phoenix last month at Night of Champions. Forget the fact that they were in Beth’s hometown. It was their second clash in as many pay-per-views, and considering the HUGE differences between the two, everyone thought Phoenix would surely walk away with the belt two weeks ago. It seemed as if the general belief was that Kelly Kelly wouldn’t survive Summerslam with her gold, so Night of Champions was definitely out of the question. The seemingly blind brass at WWE somehow saw something else, and we all had to deal with Kelly as champ for a while longer. Why have Beth Phoenix lose twice back-to-back…especially since she has an ally. I think Natalya should have got a shot at one of the last two pay-per-views to even it out some. Nevertheless, Beth Phoenix is back on top of the Divas division, and that’s a very good thing. The WWE Universe spoke in many ways last night in terms of letting WWE know what they want, or what they like. Hopefully WWE will return their ears to the Universe….listen….and take heed.

Alberto Del Rio def. John Cena {C} and CM Punk: (WWE Championship/Triple Threat Hell In A Cell)
I was looking forward to this one for a few reasons. One, I wanted to see CM Punk walk away with the title. Two, I thought the conspiracy saga would continue to be played out as well. The feeling of uncertainty and unpredictablility still loomed large over the night. The match itself was great. For it to be the first Triple Threat HIAC match, it needed to be special, if not unforgettable. It was all that and more. As I said, I liked the match itself, but the end is what I really want to talk about. I love when something comes out of nowhere that drops everyone’s jaws, and that’s exactly what we saw here. The finish of the brawl started when Ricardo Rodriguez took out the outiside referee and stole the key. His attempt to help Del Rio got him an AA from inside the Cell to the outside, which I found funny. What happened next was about as unpredictable as can be. I thought Del Rio smacking Cena with the lead pipe and locking the defending champion out of the HIAC itself was good stuff. Now the intriguing factor was if Cena was going to be able to make it back inside the Cell, or would he actually be forced to watch his championship reign go down the drain…completely powerless to stop it. I’ll admit, I didn’t see it going down the way it did. Cena has been booked in so many superhuman ways, it wouldn’t have been out of the question for Cena to rip the door off the Cell, or something ridiculous like run a hole in the side or something like that. ADR returned his attention to CM Punk, and was able to garner the victory and the championship. Talk about funny….that was one of the funniest finishes I’ve ever seen. The only thing better than Cena getting beat for a title is seeing him being made to powerlessly watch himself become a former champ. That was great, but there was no time to enjoy what I’d seen. The Cell raised and Cena ran back inside to get his revenge. With everyone’s attention on that, a disguised Miz and Truth were able to hop the guardrail and enter the Cell with weapons. Just as quickly as the Cell was raised, it was lowered again. Due to Del Rio tossing the key under the ring, there was no way in or out. I enjoyed this entire angle as Awesome Truth created a chaotic scene not seen since the debut of the Nexus in early 2010. They laid out everyone in sight….including the cameramen…which is what I found to be one of the best parts. That’s something that you just don’t see in wrestling. It doesn’t happen at all. I’m not saying its never happened, but it’s a true rarity. Tell me the last time you’ve seen it? Doing different things is key to success, and WWE scored big with this one. Triple H sent Laurinitis to the tech area next to the stage to get the Cell raised, and now all of a sudden the teckie was rendered helpless, and “couldn’t” raise the cage anymore. There’s more of this conspiracy laying right there. Who lowered the Cell once Awesome Truth jumped the security wall? Are we expected to believe that the mechanics controlling the Cell’s assent and descent all of a sudden went into business for themeleves? Why couldn’t it be raised back up? While this is happening, we’ve got everybody who works for WWE at the Cell trying to break in or shake it down to no avail. Even the cops were present. When bolt cutters allowed access to the Cell, Awesome Truth immediately surrendered. Cops and security were able to keep the WWE back as they were led out in cuffs, but you could feel the explosion coming. Triple H was the one to set it off and defend his company against the “fired” talents. I thought this was done well as it will increase the arguments of those trying to get the COO impeached. Johnny Ace found himself looking up at the lights in the meelay. To quote the late, great Gorilla Monsoon, it was absolute pandemonium! Things have been shaken beyond belief and it’s good for business. People are talking and that’s the key. The Raw that will follow should be off the charts. As we move forward, I want you to keep a couple questions in mind. Who lowered the Cell back down? Why could they not get the Cell back up? And how were Miz and Truth able to get past WWE security not once, but twice, on the same night? Will Kevin Nash be revealed as being a co-conspirator? Maybe he was controlling the Cell? Perhaps the most important question is….what’s next? Stay tuned folks….

Category: Wrestling.

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