Although WWE Network subscribers saw that ominous steel cage hovering above the ring, they never got to see The Fiend defend his WWE Championship against challenger Braun Strowman.
For the second year in a row, WWE aired only a part of the annual Starrcade show, a cornerstone of the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA) and World Championship Wrestling (WCW). Why the WWE won’t just broadcast the entire show to celebrate the holidays is not really clear.
This year’s WWE Network main event was yet another irritating switcheroo by the WWE. Due to Lana’s “restraining order” against Rusev, he could not participate in the Last Man Standing match so Bobby Lashley was declared the winner by forfeit.
That didn’t sit well with Kevin Owens who came down to the ring and challenged Lashley to a match. Owens would wallop Lashley with a Stunner. A win was a done deal until Lana came into the ring distracting the official. Lana would slide a steel chair into the ring. Rusev prevented Lashley from using it on Owens. Owens was disqualified.
Restraining order or no restraining order, Rusev battered Lashley all around the Infinite Energy Arena in Duluth, Georgia. Rusev smacked Lashley with a kendo stick and a steel chair then fled into the audience as Lana shouted “Where are the police?”.
The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford) (with Ric Flair) versus The O.C. (Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson)
Montez Ford pins Karl Anderson. Photo: WWE.
Ric Flair’s appearance on the Kevin Owens Show was disrupted by Gallows and Anderson. The Street Profits step up and call out the O.C. Montez Ford stopped Angelo Dawkins from falling victim to the Magic Killer. Ford splashes Gallows on the floor. Dawkins gives Anderson a spinebuster in the ring. Ford splashes Anderson from the top rope for the pinfall.
Winners: The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford).
Match Rating: 7 / 10
The Kabuki Warriors (Asuka and Kairi Sane – champions) versus Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair (challengers) versus Bayley and Sasha Banks (challengers) versus Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross (challengers) – Fatal 4-Way Tag team match for the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship
Asuka forces Nikki Cross to submit. Photo: WWE.
A messy match with those involved tagging in members of other teams giving them a chance to win for no apparent reason. Nikki Cross leaps onto Charlotte’s back. Charlotte shrugs her off. Cross sidesteps a spear by Charlotte. Charlotte collides with a corner turnbuckle. Asuka forces Cross to submit to the Asuka Lock.
Winners:…and still WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions, The Kabuki Warriors.
Match Rating: 6.5 / 10
Bobby Lashley (with Lana) versus Kevin Owens
Winner: Bobby Lashley via disqualification.
Match Rating: 7.5 / 10