Laracuente Ledger Podcast Pro Wrestling

WWE Stomping Grounds Recap

WWE has a battle on their hands as we have previously detailed. And last night, WWE Stomping Grounds would be the first salvo in that battle. So let’s recap what went down at WWE Stomping Grounds.

Kick-off Show

Cruiserweight Championship Triple Threat

Laracuente Ledger Rating: 4.25/5
Predicted Winner: Tony Nese
Actual Winner: Drew Gulak

As expected with Cruiserweights, this match started quick. Drew Gulak would spend much of the match on the outside as Akira Tozawa an Tony Nese battled. All three men would put on an incredible display. Each man would have an opportunity to shine, and the slow entering crowd at Stomping Ground would love the matchup.

Main Card

Raw Women’s Championship: Becky Lynch vs. Lacey Evans

Laracuente Ledger Rating: 1.5/5
Predicted Winner: Becky Lynch
Actual Winner: Becky Lynch

This match would start out with a lock-up, and Becky would take the early advantage. There would be a clear botch on Lacey Evans part that would have the crowd reacting with a “Lacey Sucks” chant. The Evans would shove Becky into the announcer’s table and would then target the mid-section of Lynch. Lacey Evans would ground Becky and focus a ground attack on the mid-section. Becky Lynch would use Lacey’s “sweat rag” against her with a Mandible Claw type maneuver. But in the end, Becky Lynch would retain her Raw Women’s Championship.

The rating for this matchup honestly came down to the fact that Lacey Evans wasn’t ready for this opportunity. And WWE’s lack of development has reared its head.

Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens vs. New Day

Laracuente Ledger Rating: 4/5
Predicted Winner: Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
Actual Winner: Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn

Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn would come out of the gate with all of their biggest moves. But Xavier Woods would kick out at each pinfall attempt. Owens and Zayn would show the real-life friendship and chemistry that they have and would work exceptionally well as a tag team. Zayn and Owens would control Xavier Woods nearly the entire matchup. Once Big E entered the match, the powerhouse of the New Day would take control. Big E would deliver some powerful suplexes. The would be a beautiful sequence towards the end by Sami Zayn, shoving Big E while kicking Xavier Woods.

United States Championship: Samoa Joe vs. Ricochet

Laracuente Ledger Rating: 4.5/5
Predicted Winner: Samoa Joe
Actual Winner: Ricochet

Samoa Joe would start the match, hitting Ricochet with some strong strikes. Then Ricochet would try to pick up the pace. But Samoa Joe would quickly turn the tide. Ricochet would show his athletism throughout the attacks by Joe. As the pace quicken so increased Ricochet’s chances for victory. Ricochet would then begin flying all around the ring as Samoa Joe would be staggering around. This match was incredible to witness as both men would play perfectly off their own strengths.

Smackdown Live Tag Team Championships: Planet’s Champions vs. Heavy Machinery

Laracuente Ledger Rating: 3.75/5
Predicted Winner: Daniel Bryan & Rowan
Actual Winner: Daniel Bryan & Rowan

The Stomping Grounds event was taking place in Washington State, the “Last stronghold of the Yes Movement” as was stated on commentary. And everything Daniel Bryan did the crowd was cheered. And even though Heavy Machinery were the “babyfaces” in this matchup, they were treated as heels. Otis and Tucker would dominate the early part of the match. But when Rowan came in the match shifted. There would be a lot of hard-hitting blows in this contest. The brilliance of Daniel Bryan would be seen on his face when DB tried to kick in the chest of Otis. The ending of the match would lead one to believe that Tucker & Otis would walk away champions. But that was not the case on that night.

Smackdown Live Women’s Champion: Bayley vs. Alexa Bliss

Laracuente Ledger Rating: 4/5
Predicted Winner: Bayley
Actual Winner: Bayley

The start of this match would begin very aggressively from both women. Which would be a logical start for the “heat” they have built up for this feud. (So good job with the opening booking.) This match had a much smoother and crisper feel than the Lynch/Evans match earlier in the night. And it also had a different and much more improved feeling than the feud these two women had a few years ago. Both women would show a level of growth with their in-ring ability. The distraction by Nikki Cross would backfire on Alexa Bliss, allowing Bayley to retain.

Roman Reigns vs. Drew McIntyre

Laracuente Ledger Rating: 3.5/5
Predicted Winner: Drew McIntyre
Actual Winner: Roman Reigns

This match began with Drew running down before Reigns would even enter the ring. Roman Reigns would fly onto Drew McIntyre. Roman would lose focus and chase Shane only to be picked off by McIntyre. Shane McMahon would involve himself at just about every turn. Drew McIntyre would control much of the contest. Nearly every attempted comeback by Reigns would result in McIntyre thwarting the attempt. Drew McIntyre would venture out of his normal moveset with some submissions. Shane McMahon’s interference would leave Roman open to a vicious inverted Alabama Slam into the announce table. We would also see a customary Shane McMahon, “Coast-to-Coast” onto Roman. But ultimately even the interference by Shane McMahon wasn’t enough to keep down Roman Reigns.

WWE Championship Steel Cage: Kofi Kingston vs. Dolph Ziggler

Laracuente Ledger Rating: 3.5/5
Predicted Winner: Kofi Kingston
Actual Winner: Kofi Kingston

The opening moments of this match would be a feeling out process until a huge dropkick exchange by Ziggler and Kingston. Dolph would be the first to use the cage to his advantage and gain control. Ziggler would maintain control for the majority of the match. Kofi would then begin to turn the page and use the cage as his own ally against Ziggler. This match would have a slow pace, but it would just feel as if both men had conflicting chemistries. But both veterans would deliver a solid grueling bout for the WWE Championship. The finish was the most impressive finish to a steel cage match I have ever witnessed in professional wrestling history.

WWE Universal Championship: Seth Rollins vs. Baron Corbin
Special Guest Referee: Lacey Evans

Laracuente Ledger Rating: 2.5/5
Predicted Winner: Seth Rollins
Actual Winner: Seth Rollins

Much of the build to this match has been about the special guest referee. Lacey Evans (who lost to Seth’s girlfriend earlier in the night) would be named referee. This was a brilliant strategy for a special guest referee. Evans would fast count and allow Corbin to get a lot of leeway. Baron Corbin would control much of the match. The WWE Universe would voice their displeasure chanting “AEW,” “boring,” and “Lacey Sucks” among other things. Seth Rollins put on an admirable display, but the involvement of Baron Corbin and Lacey Evan would drag down the entire match. Michael Cole would do an incredible job on commentary voicing the displeasure of the WWE Universe.

But we would finally have our savior in the farce of the Universal Championship match, and her name was Becky Lynch. Becky would come out to restore order and allow Seth Rollins to capitalize and retain the WWE Universal Championship. The rating would only be achieved because of the closing moments.

Stomping Grounds Overall Rating: 3.5/5

Overall the event was above average despite the rocky main event. And especially when considering that most of these matches were repeat matches. WWE put forth a strong effort from a B-Level PPV. And we will have to wait and see what AEW Fyter Fest will offer to compare the two truly. But all things considered, this was one of the better WWE Network specials.

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