By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Dean Ambrose Interrupted Seth Rollins
Rollins continues to improve his mic skills with every promo he cuts. This was a logical follow-up to the events from Monday's Raw and the crowd was hot for the brief brawl Rollins and Ambrose engaged in before it was broken up by Randy Orton. I'm glad they're not giving too much away too soon since they should save it for their eventual match whenever that might be. It was cool to see Roman Reigns make the save and come to the aid of his former Shield member Ambrose. I'm still waiting for a backstage segment between the two where they announce that they're going their separate ways (technically they already have), but that's nitpicking things. A solid segment to set the stage for the main event later in the night.
Cesaro vs. Big E Went to a No Contest
After taking losses on Raw and Main Event, it was crucial for Cesaro to get his heat back on this show, and I'm glad he did so by brutally ambushing Big E. It was far better than anything a match between the two could have accomplished. It made Cesaro look like an absolute beast, especially since Big E is no small competitor. Can Big E please ditch the preacher gimmick? It does nothing to add to his character and it comes off as so phony.
United States Champion Sheamus def. Alberto Del Rio
Many, myself included, have grown tired of seeing theses two face other, but there's no denying they always have good matches every time they clash. The problem is not that they're great wrestlers but rather that both of their characters are extremely stale. That aside, this was a well wrestled matches for only being a little less than 10 minutes long. I liked the idea of the U.S. title being defended on the Fourth of July show, but wished the challenger would have been a bit more interesting. Hopefully Sheamus can move into a feud over the strap sometime soon.
Bo Dallas def. Diego
I couldn't remember the last time I've seen any member of Los Matadores on television, but then again, perhaps that's a good thing. Diego and El Torito aren't good for anything without Fernando except for squash matches and that's exactly what this was and needed to be. It wasn't anything of note, of course, but Dallas' pre- and post-match promos were hilarious, especially his bit with El Torito that's worth checking out.
Chris Jericho Called Out The Wyatt Family
Jericho cut a good, intense promo on The Wyatt Family and I liked how it ranged from classic Y2J to focused, fired up Jericho. Bray Wyatt's response was also great and I love how their feud will be based off both guys referring to themselves as saviors. It was an enjoyable exchange from Wyatt and Jericho that set the stage for their pending feud. The Miz's interruption was a nice callback to Monday's segment and he can take Codebreaker after Codebreaker and not be damaged by it. I realize Wyatt vs. Jericho is the direction they're going in right now, but I hope to see a Miz vs. Jericho feud come to fruition at some point.
Divas Champion AJ Lee def. Eva Marie (Non-title)
This match didn't do much to establish AJ as a babyface or a heel since her opponent Eva could be classified as both. That said, Eva was not the right choice to face AJ in her first match as champion. She's better off competing in just tag team matches (or not at all) where she can be protected. Her glaring weaknesses were exploited here and not even AJ could carry her to a passable match. At least it was kept relatively brief. Paige not saying anything and simply smiling at AJ was interesting and I look forward to where their feud goes from here.
Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter Interrupted Rusev and Lana
I'll admit I got a kick out a Damien Sandow's impersonation of Mr. McMahon on Monday's Raw, but I'm still no fan of him dressing up as random people each week. His Bruce Springsteen impersonation was stupid, but I'm glad it was short-lived before Rusev tossed him out. This was basically the same segment from Lana and Colter that we saw on Monday, but it was fitting to do once again given it's the Fourth of July. The "We the People" chants are massive and they'll help get Swagger over as a babyface in a big way. Hopefully they slowly build toward their eventual match so it'll feel like a big deal once they go to war with each other.
Dean Ambrose def. Randy Orton by Disqualification
Ambrose and Orton wrestle two very similar styles and it made for an interesting matchup. Ambrose did a nice job selling his shoulder injury throughout the bout and coming across as vulnerable. They worked a solid match, but with Seth Rollins on commentary, fans figured it'd end in a disqualification. Even still, Ambrose and Orto work well enough together to the point where I'd like to see a full blown feud between them down the line. Roman Reigns was very much over with the live crowd when he made the save and he was able to further his feud with Orton in the process.
With this being a holiday show, you'd think WWE wouldn't take it as seriously since many people probably didn't tune in live. Despite that, this was a good show as a whole and better than some recent editions of SmackDown. The main event and United States Championship match were both good as were the segments with Seth Rollins and Chris Jericho. I was also glad that they didn't make this a campy holiday themed show as they've been known to do in the past. This wasn't a must-see episode by any means, but it was an enjoyable two hours that has me excited for what's to come next week on Raw. Have a happy Fourth of July, folks!
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