10The Feud of All Feuds
There have been very few feuds heading into WrestleMania that have been as good or better than Chris Jericho and Kevin Owens. Being “best friends” gave the fans a reminder how good Jericho truly is inside and out. At WWE Fastlane, Chris Jericho cost Kevin Owens his Universal Championship. On WWE RAW, Owens said the only thing he can think about is taking Jericho’s championship off of him. He calls him a tool and then says that they were never best friends, which leads to the match being finalized. Owens comes to the ring and all hell breaks loose. Samoa Joe appears, as well as Sami Zayn, which lets all four men brawl in the ring. It leads to Kevin Owens vs. Sami Zayn.
Owens controlled most of the match, hitting three moves in succession before a pop-up powerbomb to pick up the win. We would see Chris Jericho and Samoa Joe battle later in the night, when Samoa Joe applied the submission choke on the outside. Jericho did not make the ten count, but did hit a Codebreaker for good measure.
The connection between Jericho, Owens and the crowd is unmatched. Both men have the utmost respect from fans and they all know that these two guys will tear the house down. Tonight was the perfect start to confirm the match, given even more importance on the United States Championship and allow both men to do what they do best. I hope that they go even further in the coming weeks, adding more personal conflict and potentially have Kevin Owens really take personal shots at Chris Jericho. They have three weeks to make it the best feud possible, even though the past six months have been brewing to this. Well done tonight to make this feel important, even without the Universal Championship.
Cruiserweight Action Hitting The Right Notes
Neville defended the Cruiserweight Championship for the second consecutive night, this time against Rich Swann. The match was excellent, with Neville and Swann trading massive kicks, superplex moves and slowing things down when they needed to. Neville moved out of the way of Swann’s air attack and applied his Rings of Saturn submission hold. Swann would have to tap out.
Austin Aries came out and interviewed Neville in the ring. The crowd chanted for A Double, which upset Neville. He says nobody can hold a candle to him, which prompts Aries to say that the crowd thinks otherwise. Neville confronts Aries, Aries takes off his sunglasses and hits Neville with a discus elbow. The champion falls to the outside.
Two months. I have asked for this to happen for two months and it is actually happened. Austin Aries has been fantastic on the commentator desk, but it was all the perfect set-up for his return to the squared circle. There is no better pairing for this championship at WrestleMania that Austin Aries vs. Neville. From a character standpoint to in-ring talents, these guys are the perfect match for the biggest stage of the year. I may be more excited about this match that more than half of the card, especially from a fan of 205 Live and the talent they have on that show. Tonight’s first hour was a great development for two championship matches in Orlando.