The Spotlight On The WWE Network- SummerSlam: Phenom vs. Beast

With just 13 days until their epic rematch at WWE Summerslam, the WWE Network ran a special last night focusing on the history between Brock Lesnar and The Undertaker.  The special, which aired right after Monday Night Raw, featured comments from different WWE superstars and legends about their opinions regarding both the Undertaker and Brock Lesnar and their rematch at Summerslam. Let’s get right into some of the highlights from the piece.

Highlights

1) It Was The Day The Music Died–  The 23 minute long, documentary style piece did a good job of starting with a brief overview of the Undertaker’s undefeated streak from Wrestlemania and how much it meant to the show.  Everyone from Edge to the Big Show to Shawn Michaels (all former opponents of the Undertaker at Wrestlemania) were interviewed on the piece and did a great job in explaining that while you would see titles change hands at Wrestlemania, you would never see the streak broken.  I always enjoy the packages focusing on the Undertaker’s past opponents from the different Wrestlemanias if for no other reason, then to see the difference in the Undertaker and how that character has continued to evolve over the years.  This then transitioned nicely into a piece about what happened when Brock Lesnar broke the Undertaker’s streak.  Being their live for Wrestlemania 30, I can tell you that this moment was undoubtedly the most insane crowd reaction I’ve ever seen.  Dean Ambrose says it best here by saying that in one moment an entire stadium full of people’s jaws dropped in unison. They then show the Undertaker walking off at Wrestlemania 30 as they played an eery rendition of his theme song played on the piano, as everyone wondered if it was the last time we would be seeing the Undertaker.  The crowd shots are really what will make that moment live in infamy (here’s to you incredibly shocked bulging eyes guy)

2) Suplex, Repeat-  From here, the piece did a really nice job of going over Brock Lesnar’s reign of dominance in WWE over the last 18 months following Wrestlemania 30.  Everything from Brock’s win over John Cena at Sumerslam last year to the birth of Suplex City at this past year’s Wrestlemania is covered in depth.  I think the Big Show said it best here when he said “At first you didn’t want to see the streak end but as time went on you thought, well if there was ever going to be anyone to do it, Brock Lesnar would be the guy to do it”.  I also really liked that they had interviews with Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins, guys who’ve face Lesnar over this span and who gave first hand accounts of what it was like to compete against Brock Lesnar.

3) The Rematch- In the end, the piece leads up to the big return for the Undertaker at Battleground and the brawl between the Undertaker and Brock Lesnar the next night on Raw.  They then turn to a few different superstars to get their thoughts on what this rematch at Summerslam means to both Brock and The Undertaker.  Triple H points out how much this match means to the Undertaker because he has to protect his  legacy, while Paul Heyman explains that this will be the final match for the Undertaker and that Brock Lesnar will finish him for good at Summerslam.  This was a really good idea because it gave the rematch between Brock Lesnar and The Undertaker that big match feel that it so truly deserves.  After all if all of these superstars and legends are returning to discuss a match of this magnitude, you should believe it’s a match worth going out of your way to see.

Closing Thoughts

In the end, I thought this piece did a great job in building up the main event of Summerslam.  There isn’t any reason with the WWE Network that they couldn’t put together a special like this for each of their big show main events.  It reminded me, to a certain extent, of the UFC packages they put together to promote a big fight.  I liked that rather than having the two men in the match talk about it, you had their peers discussing the match instead.  Tome part of the appeal of both the Undertaker and Brock Lesnar is their mystique and that you don’t see them as much.  Overall, this was a really strong network specialthat everyone should take the mere 20 minutes to go out of your way to check out.

That’s going to do it for me but I also have a review up of last night’s big Raw from Washington, as well as a piece I did on Slipknot’s Summer’s Last Stand Tour from last week, here in New York.  Check out both of those pieces and let me know what you think. Thanks, as always, for all of your support.

All photos courtesy of the WWE Network

The Spotlight On The Week ahead for WWE 8/10-8/16

Hello everyone I hope everybody had a good week last week, as the summer continues to fly right by here in New York City and I know has officially ended in other parts of the United States, as public schools have reopened.  For my fellow New Yorkers, let’s enjoy some of this hot weather while we can because, before we know it, there will be 2 feet of snow on the ground again.  Now that I’ve bummed everyone out, as the summer continues to count down for some of us, things continue to heat up in WWE.  We are now just 13 days away from the “Wrestlemania of the Summer” as the road continues to Summerslam.  Let’s get right into some of the things you can look forward to this upcoming week in WWE.

Highlights

1) The Arrow Has Landed…and He May Have Company-  Ever since Raw emanated live from the Nassau Coliseum (A show I was at live and covered here on the site on Memorial Day) when actor Stephen Amell sat front row for the show, the tension has been building between the actor and Stardust.  This all comes to a head tonight as the actor will return to Raw, live from Everett, Washington this evening.  Whether the actor has agreed to a match at Summerslam remains to be seen, but I’d say it is likely that Amell will be at the event in some capacity.  Rumors are running rampant that Amell will don the role of Arrow for a “Superhero” type showdown with Stardust at the biggest event of the summer.  I think it would personally be a lot of fun but I believe that if Amell hasn’t signed on for a match, he’ll at the least be in the corner of Neville (who’s also been involved in this story line) at Summerslam.

Actor Stephen Amell, may not be the only person returning to WWE tonight as last night at a WWE live event in Vancouver, BC, Dolph Ziggler made a surprise appearance attacking Rusev.  While pwinsider.com is reporting that Ziggler’s return will be held off until next week, I wouldn’t be shocked to see Dolph make that return tonight to build towards his inevitable match with Rusev at Summerslam.  Another superstar on the mend is the intercontinental champion, Ryback.  We touched on Ryback’s staph infection last week on this very column and it does appear that Ryback is going to also be returning in time for Summerslam so he can continue his program with the Miz and The Big Show.  Whether, he returns to Raw tonight, remains to be seen.  Of course, will all do respect to Dolph Ziggler and Ryback, the biggest name of superstars on the way back from injury is John Cena.  Cena has not been seen on WWE television since his broken nose two weeks ago.  It’ll be interesting to see if he shows up tonight to accept Seth Rollins’ title vs. title match at Summerslam.  I for one would like to see Cena held out until Summerslam to add to the mystique of what he will look like and whether he’ll even be there, but I realize that isn’t very likely.

2) A Big Night Following Raw- While both the Undertaker and Brock Lesnar aren’t advertised for Raw tonight, there will be a special presentation profiling the big Summerslam match between the two immediately following Monday Night Raw on the WWE Network.  The special, entitled “Undertaker Vs. Lesnar: One On One” is being promoted as a preview of the main event match with thoughts and predictions from the other WWE Superstars.  I can’t remember the last time that WWE has done this but I’m excited for it, the special gives this match a big event feel and also ties in the WWE Network with the Summerslam promotion.  If WWE were smart they’d promote this special and try to get some network subscriptions out of this promotion.

Also, on the WWE Network tonight is a first look at the new Best of WCW Monday Nitro Volume 3 Blu Ray set which will be released tomorrow.  I also appreciate these first looks and, I know in the case of Daniel Bryan, the first look got me to go out and purchase the blu ray the next day so they’re a smart idea in that sense too.  DDP is back hosting the set and I think he did a great job on the first two editions.

3) The Build For NXT Takeover: Brooklyn Continues-  WWE Summerslam isn’t the only show emanating out of the Barclays center the weekend of 8/23.  The night before Summerslam, NXT Takeover:Brooklyn will be live on the WWE Network on August 22nd (and is actually sold out which is very impressive for the NXT brand).  Well, this Wednesday the build for Takeover continues when Becky Lynch goes one on one with Bayley to determine the number one contender for Sasha Banks’ NXT Women’s championship at Takeover.  The women’s championship match will no doubt be the second biggest match on the Takeover card behind only the ladder match for the NXT World Title between Kevin Ownes and Finn Balor, so this is a match you want to go out of your way to see,  Will Bayley continue her recent winning streak towards getting a womens title match? or Will Becky Lynch get a rematch against Sasha Banks from their epic match at the last NXT: Takeover event?  The only way to find out would be to tune into NXT this Wednesday night on the WWE Network at 8:00 Pm EST.

Closing Thoughts

On top of all of this, John Cena will be appearing on WWE Tough Enough tomorrow night, as the show has reached it’s final six.  Whether he is able to return to Monday Night Raw tonight remains to be seen, but if not than Tough Enough would be John’s first appearance since breaking his nose in a match with Seth Rollins two weeks ago.  Lastly, tomorrow night on Total Divas it appears that Daniel Bryan’s health will be a big focus of the show.  Up until this point, the details behind Bryan’s injury have been kept pretty close to the vest so I wonder if this is because WWE is saving Bryan’s health update for Total Divas.  Regardless it promises to be a big week for WWE before the mega week and chaos that will commence next week.  Until then, be sure to keep yourself tuned it with all of the great coverage we have for you right here on thedailyspotlight.com.