Christian, who appeared on the premier episode of WWE Superstars, makes a rare appearance to main event our show with Drew McIntyre. However, before the I.C Champ and Chosen one lock horns we have 3 exciting bouts featuring Tensai, Phoenix and Jinder Mahal.
A quick note before we get to the rasslin’. I apologise for being late with my review; I have experienced ill health since Thursday.
Beth Phoenix vs. Alicia Fox
On the surface Beth appears relaxed but her body language translates to anger. Fox is fortunate to generate some offense in the beginning featuring predominantly basic strike offense. With The Glamazon on the apron Alicia sweeps her opponent’s feet which results in Beth landing face first off the apron. As the action returns to the ring Beth takes control. Beth Phoenix utilises a combination of both strike and submission offense.
Fox attempts to fight out with several elbows but Phoenix ultimately reigns superior with the assistance of impressive power.. The Glamazon attempts a spear in the corner but misses as her opponent lifts herself out of the target zone. Fox catches an injured opponent and gets the roll-up pin; 2 count.
It isn’t long before the dominant Beth is back on the offense as she lands a hard clothesline followed by a backbreaker-submission. Beth attempts a powerbomb but Alicia reverses this to secure a second roll up pin attempt; 2 count. Fox executes a couple of dropkicks but misses her finisher. Beth takes advantage and hits the Glam Slam.
Winner – Beth Phoenix
WoM – Beth Phoenix
After the match Beth makes it clear that she wants Layla. Unfortunately the Divas don’t get too much time on RAW so Superstars is a good platform to remind the audience of Beth’s ambitions.
As for this match; it was simply a run-out for both competitors. The offense was decent and the tempo was very good; fairly enjoyable match all-round.
Tensai w/Sakamoto vs. Alex Riley
Scott Stanford thinks that if anyone can take down Tensai it's Alex Riley. Really?
Tensai backs Riley into the corner and works over the former bully with fists. They return to the centre of the ring and Tensai hits a bodyslam before ejecting Alex from the ring. As Tensai attempts to return his opponent to the ring Alex lands a dropkick to the head of Tensai; this fails to faze the powerhouse. Sir Tensai continues with his ruthless punishment by means of painful submission moves.
A-Ry attempts to fight back but Tensai brushes him aside. Riley successfully mounts some basic strike offense but his efforts quickly dissipate as Tensai reverses his turnbuckle attack into the Chokebomb. He follows with the Senton Splash which warrants the 3 count.
Winner – Tensai
MoM – Tensai
Another squash match for Sir Tensai. Word on the street is that earlier in the week the WWE brass declared Lord Tensai a flop and have ordered further variations to the character. I remain confused as to why there is such a lack of enthusiasm for the talented, experienced and committed Tensai. Fans are always asking for differentiation between characters; Tensai is just that.
Tensai performed well in this match demonstrating an ensemble of offense. Riley’s job was to sell and he done such adequately.
Jinder Mahal vs. Yoshi Tatsu
The battle of Asia: Part 2.
Tatsu begins on the offense as he executes several kicks and chops. Jinder soon implements his own style of ruthless offense as he begins to hit hard knees. Mahal drags his opponent to the ropes and proceeds with his patented big knees. Mahal next takes Yoshi to the corner and connects with elbows to the head and follows with an impressive double underhook suplex. Yoshi is finding it difficult to mount any kind of offense and his efforts are further retarded as Jinder employs a headlock and neckbreaker.
Jinder slows the tempo and Tatsu obtains his first break with a counter sequence in the corner. He makes his way out to initiate his unique style of offense but unfortunately misses his finishing roundhouse kick. Mahal takes advantage and hits his jumping knee to the back of the neck. A grounded Tatsu finds himself victim to the Mahal Clutch. The Japanese superstar submits.
Winner – Jinder Mahal
MoM – Jinder Mahal
Mahal utilised a mixed bag of offense which is something he must continue to work-on. Yoshi never wins on Superstars; he rarely even gets an opportunity to mount some meaningful offense. With Tensai representing Japan Yoshi is no longer the sole symbol of the Far East. Perhaps he won’t survive another roster clean up.
Christian (c) vs. Drew McIntyre
The first 3 matches have been reasonably short and we subsequently have a good 10-15 minutes for the main event. Christian comes out with new t-shirt “For the peeps, by the peeps”. Drew appears clean shaven.
Drew wins the initial jostle with his power advantage. Christian attempts to secure a waist lock but Drew reverses the Canadians attempts and furthers his control implementing a headlock.
Striker has an awesome line where he states that he is “waiting on Drew McIntyre to breakout, waiting for Drew McIntyre to take over the World and he is waiting and waiting and waiting”. You’re damn right, Striker.
Christian evades several of Drew McIntyre’s running attacks but the sinister Scotsman finally connects as he lands a shoulder thrust. Drew works over his opponent in the corner with stomps but Christian is soon on the offense after he reverses an Irish whip attack. Christian positions his opponent in the corner and executes mounted punches which are followed by a missile dropkick from the top rope. Christian again gets up on the turnbuckle this time Drew responds quickly and pushes his opponent to the outside mat.
Drew punishes Christian with hard strike offense. He proceeds to execute a grounded waist-lock in an attempt to drain his opponent. Christian attempts to fight out with elbows but McIntyre regains the momentum with a knee to the mid section which sends his opponent spinning. Drew lands an impressive move where he utilises a reverse suplex on Christian from the apon.
Drew implements a second grounded waist-lock. The big Scot then executes a free fall slam from a fireman’s carry position. Christian counters a turnbuckle attack and slowly picks up momentum. He gets the crowd going after he lands his patented slap to the face after vaulting the ropes. Christian proceeds to land a missile dropkick off the ropes and follows by going up top for the crossbody-pin; 2 count. Christian attempts a second crossbody but Drew catches him in mid-air and counters into a backbreaker; impressive power.
Christian reverses a fireman’s carry into a pin attempt; 2 count. The former World Champion next utilises some creative offense, scissor choke in conjunction with the turnbuckle. Drew reverses with some creative offense of his own as he flips Christian from his choking position and plants him face first onto the mat.
Both competitors are drained and a running attack by McIntyre allows Christian to counter with the pendulum kick. The Intercontinental Champion comes off the second rope but Drew catches him; however, Christian proceeds to land a DDT. The end is near and Christian sets up the spear but Drew reverses into a lift and slam, similar to an F5; 2 count. Drew looks for the Future Shock but Christian counters sending Drew head first into the turnbuckle. As Drew waddles back the Canadian takes advantage by landing Kill-switch followed by a Frog Splash for the pin.
Winner – Christian
MoM – Drew McIntyre
Watch this match; it was PPV quality. Surprisingly, Drew controlled the majority of the bout. Christian did, at times, mount impressive offense but he very much played second fiddle to the Chosen One. The offense was creative and it generated evident excitement in the crowd. The duration was longer than average bouts on Superstars which allowed them to tell a story. It really picked up for the finish and it wasn’t a surprise that the Champion won. I would like to extend my gratitude to both competitors for this epic match.
I thought this week’s episode would struggle after the impressive show we got last week, but I was wrong.
The opening 3 matches were all entertaining bouts which featured a high concentration of wrestling manoeuvres as opposed to time wasting submission holds. Tensai was particularly impressive.
The main event was special. I was initially surprised to see Christian listed for Superstars; I don’t expect the frequency of his appearances to increase. His performance oozed talent and experience. What can I say about Drew McIntyre? That was the Drew McIntyre I remember before his backstage trouble scarred his development. Hopefully the WWE takes notice of such a remarkable performance.
I am still relatively ill so I will leave it there for this week. Thank you for reading my work and if you have any feedback I would be glad to hear it either via email firstname.lastname@example.org, on twitter @Graham_Galloway or in the comment section below.