HomeTelevisionWWE Stomping Grounds 2019 Review: A Surprisingly Good Show

WWE Stomping Grounds 2019 Review: A Surprisingly Good Show

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Tonight is the first of a new pay-per-view event, WWE Stomping Grounds. Many championships on the line. The pre-show saw the first title change of the night as DREW GULAK defeated Tony Nese and Akira Tozawa to become WWE Cruiserweight Champion. I have to say, 205Live has improved a lot and I feel they have finally developed their roster to a solid base. Gulak, Nese, and Tozawa are solid wrestlers and put on great matches consistently. I don’t mind them on the pre-show, they are good to hype the crowd up for the main show.

First match of the night sees Becky Lynch retain the RAW Women’s Championship against Lacey Evans. Not a bad start to the main show. Evans showed more in-ring skill this time, while I’m not 100% sold on her, she did enough to show me she could last a while on the main roster. Lots of near falls, and Evans with some clear dominating moments during the match. I liked how Lynch would rally back and Evans would have to come back harder. In the end, Lynch prevails, and nothing too harsh against Lacey, but I hope this is the end of her run at the Women’s Championship. Time for a new contender.

Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn defeated Big E. and Xavier Woods.

I’m fine with the New Day members taking a loss. Owens and Zayn needed a win to keep them rolling and this worked well. Why? New Day can win, lose, eat pancakes all day or sit on commentary. They’ll never lose momentum. Owens and Zayn were starting to stagnate a bit, so this works well for them. Perhaps a run as a tag team for a while will be in their future. Big E.’s facial expressions are fun to watch. Constant back-and-forth, non-stop action. I love watching Xavier. He’s fantastic. Owens spiking with the Stunner was a solid way to end the match.

Ricochet defeats Samoa Joe to become WWE United States Champion.

I did not expect it. Wow. This starts out with Joe manhandling the lightweight. Mr. One and Only is taking a beating from the start and despite having some offense, Joe just shrugs it off. Ricochet’s flying risks have little effect against Big Joe. Some massive suplexes and powerbombs may shatter the bones of a normal human into powder, but not Ricochet. Struggling out of the Coquina Clutch, rallying with a codebreaker, and then hits the 630 for the pinfall and the championship. Very surprised, in a good way. Kudos to Ricochet on the push.

Daniel Bryan & Erick Rowan defeat Heavy Machinery to retain the WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championships.

This match was tons of fun and surprisingly good. I had my hopes for Heavy Machinery and I wasn’t disappointed. They are in Tacoma, Washington, so Daniel Bryan is the hometown homeboy here. Despite the odds, Tucker and Otis were able to go the distance with the champs. Really good match. I hope Tag Team wrestling will continue the positive trend.

Bayley retains the WWE SmackDown’s Women’s Championship against Alexa Bliss

Good match. About ten minutes of even pace, at points the crowd appeared to favor Bliss and Cross. It’s interesting what they do with Cross. Bayley gets the win despite Cross at ringside. I wonder if they do a bit where Cross wins the title and Bliss then wants her to hand it over… Hmm….

Roman Reigns defeated Drew McIntyre

This match is funny when you think about it. I honestly wasn’t sure Roman would win. Maybe with Shane’s interference? Nope. Despite the interference, once again, Roman hits his two moves of doom and down goes McIntyre. Post-match, Shane says tomorrow night on RAW, Roman Reign will have to face both of them. Ok…

WWE Championship Steel Cage Match: Kofi Kingston retains against Dolph Ziggler

Good for these two. If someone would have told me they would main event a PPV with a marquee title match, I would have thought Ziggler would be champ defending against the always-underdog Kingston. But how times have changed. This was a great match, and in my not-so-humble opinion should have closed the show. Ziggler pulled out one of his best cage matches yet. Both Kofi and Dolph take bumps and sell them like they’ve been hit by the Big Show. Ziggler, despite rumors and constant vanishing acts, made you believe he was going to leave the arena as WWE Champion. The end came in spectacular fashion, as Ziggler inched closer to the cage door, Kingston launched himself, suicide dive-style through the ropes and onto the floor, something I haven’t seen done since February 19th, 2005 where Ring of Honor had their third anniversary show at the Rex Plex in Edison, New Jersey when Austin Aries flung himself out the cage door before Cabana could go over the cage wall.

Kudos to Kingston and Ziggler.

WWE Universal Championship: Seth Rollins retains against Baron Corbin

If he hadn’t, there may have been a riot. Which would have been fine. Corbin sucks, and he pulls out Lacey Evans as the guest ref. Because Rollins wouldn’t hit a woman. But this was all sorts of bad. WWE could have chosen any female. But they went with Evans to prolong the feud with Lynch, and now they are going to make reality into storyline. Evans changed to no count-out, then no-DQ, which made it a lock for Lynch to interfere, but the damage was done. Events unfolding were horrible to the point where “A-E-Dub” and “CM Punk” chants dominated, with the occasional chant for “Daniel Bryan” and “boring.”

After the inevitable save by Lynch, a real ref, John Cone, who Bacon Rorbin had beef with came in, counted the three after a Curb Stomp and it was all over.

Man, this actually turned out to be a decent PPV, and then Bacon Bits and Loosey Lacey ruined it. They’re so hated because they’re both horrible. Therefore, we hate them so much, WWE gives us more of them. We can’t win.

I’m calling it now, at Extreme Rules, we get a mixed tag match with Rollins/Lynch vs. Bacon/Evans. Added will be some weird stipulation where the person making the pinfall wins their championship. I’m afraid Lacey Evans will somehow become Universal Champion. Or worse, Bacon Bits Rorbin becomes Women’s Champion.

Did you feel that chill? It might have been the ghosts of WCW’s past.

Nah, I’m kidding. WWE wouldn’t do that… Or would they?

Also, I didn’t have a single though about Brock Lesnar running to cash in until I typed this column. Why. Because I couldn’t care less.

In any case, Extreme Rules is up next, which also means SummerSlam is right around the corner. Hopefully we start to see some more improvement on the horizon.

WWE Stomping Grounds 2019 is now streaming on the WWE Network.

Michael Dworkis
Michael Dworkis
Michael Dworkis has been a writer for The Pop Break since 2010. For over a decade he has contributed columns featuring Anime, Comics, Transformers, Television, Movies, and most notably, Professional Wrestling. Additionally, one of the key players in the original Angry Nerds column and a guest on one of Bill's various podcasts. When he is not grinding away at his next feature, or shouting expletives at the television while playing video games or watching wrestling, Michael actually has a full-time job,as a Mental Health Professional, working at a medical practice in New Jersey, and runs his own telehealth private practice. A family man through-and-through, requiring his three children to memorize all the Autobots and Decepticons on the collection shelves while also educating them in all things Marvel and Star Wars. You know, the stuff Disney owns.


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