We’re hurtling towards Payback so let’s get in that squared circle and watch some matches!
Filmed April 25 at the XL Center, Hartford, CT
Zack Ryder vs. D-Von Dudley w/ Bubba Ray
The Zack Ryder saga resumes on Superstars after Ryder’s recent IC title loss. Down at NXT Ryder (and partner, the ever-hyped Mojo Rawley) got ambushed by The Revival but thankfully in this outing, he shows his mettle by going toe-to-toe with D-Von Dudley. That is no easy feat. Ryder and Dudley are evenly matched throughout the contest and look really sharp together. Even Bubba Ray’s interfering cannot contain Long Island Iced Z as Ryder gets the drop on D-Von for a quick roll-up finish. Holding off both Dudleys is quite a feat. Here’s to hoping for more gold in Ryder’s future.
Kalisto vs. Tyler Breeze
At this point the United States Championship is the least valued championship in WWE. This has nothing to do with current champion Kalisto so much as the lack of vision about where the champion can take the title. Trying to force Kalisto/Ryback Part 2 into suddenly being “a thing” is devaluing the belt because the stakes are so, so incredibly low. Ryback doesn’t seem to give a rip about the audience (on his side or not), putting on good matches or the United States Championship. Aiming a terrible wrestler at a good belt just makes the championship meaningless. The US Title is too important to be an after thought.
Make no mistake, Kalisto is an amazing champion. He has the fan support and his ring work is noteworthy for its slickness and his ability to make his opponents look good. That isn’t hard to do when your opponent is Tyler Breeze. This match is really stellar with excellent storytelling and crisp ring work. When Kalisto takes the match after a hail-Mary Salida Del Sol, there is no question about why Kalisto is United States Champion.