All Cesaro wants for Christmas is his two front teeth

Joshua Waddles
Staff Writer

There’s plenty of room for disappointment over who won and who lost at No Mercy, but that’s par to the course with any WWE event. No Mercy succeeded in giving us mostly good matches, and it certainly succeeded in getting fans interested in the feuds.



The Miz vs Jason Jordan for the Intercontinental Title

Miz retained against Jason Jordan with help from Bo Dallas and Curtis Axle. Jordan seems to have won over the crowd, who didn’t like him at first (probably thinking he’d be booked as a superman), but his losses and image as a solid and talented underdog seems to have done a lot for him.



Finn Balor vs Bray Wyatt

This was the match that made the feud sweet.

The fans never really bought into Bray Wyatt’s motivation for attacking Finn Balor, but the in-ring performance from both of these two made up for it. The match began with Balor faking an injury and Bray Wyatt taunting him into returning to the ring. And from the expression on Wyatt’s face and mannerisms, this is a man who has all the fun in the world doing what he does.

Many Wyatt fans have shown epic frustration with Wyatt’s win/loss record (0-3 at WrestleMania), but it seems that Bray Wyatt probably doesn’t feel the same way.

Which is a good thing, because Finn Balor won.



Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins vs Cesaro and Sheamus for the Raw Tag Team TItles

It’s only three months until Christmas, and all Cesaro wants for Christmas is his two front teeth.

In a legit injury, Cesaro broke his two front teeth during the match. He leapt too high and too far attempting a splash against Rollins in the corner and he went over the turnbuckle, ramming his mouth into the top edge of the ring-post.

As with any wrestler, Cesaro chose to show his battle scar off to the camera, grimacing big to reveal the two empty spaces where his teeth used to be.

Doctors checked out Cesaro and let him continue the match. He was covered with blood the whole time and he looked like a New Years Eve mugshot.

The legendary Mick Foley, who has those same teeth missing, congratulated Cesaro on Facebook.

The teeth stole the show, but there were great spots in this match, such as Cesaro power bombing Rollins off the middle rope on top of Ambrose, who was laid out on the mat.

Rollins and Ambrose retained. Cesaro quickly retreated back stage with Sheamus and started posting bloody, toothless selfies on Twitter.

A superficial injury is like a new pair of shoes for these guys.



Fatal FIve-Way for the Raw Women’s Title

Bayley vs Sasha Banks vs Alexa Bliss (defending) vs Nia Jax vs Emma.

The women’s division seems to be at its best with these free for all brawls. They did it right with this one; every competitor got a chance to shine in this match.

Emma probably benefited the most. The WWE put her in a “frustrated arrogant heel” angle with a lot of losses, and it was starting to make her seem irrelevant to the fans. But her performance during this match has probably silenced most of that criticism.

Nia Jax had been the favorite to win, and no doubt she’ll be holding that belt before long. Jax has also improved in the ring since her debut to the main roster, and she took an epic bump after getting power bombed off the ring apron to the floor outside of the ring. It looked like she hit her head at first, but replays show she kept it tucked and avoided a head injury.



Roman Reigns vs John Cena

There might be at least some amount of real life animosity between these two. Early on with Roman Reigns taking offense, John Cena over sold it like Shawn Michaels did with Hulk Hogan. (Michaels had to job to Hogan and in protest, he acted ridiculous about it, throwing himself onto the mat like a rag doll every time Hogan hit him.)

Cena started stumbling around and acting dizzy, getting on one knee and weakly trying to strike at Roman. Roman could plainly be seen saying “What are you doing?” and seemed to be getting mad.

The crowd started chanting “This is boring,” which it really was. But Cena picked it up a little and they had a couple of good spots. Roman speared Cena on top of the announce tables and both fell through. Roman landed on his neck but seems to be ok.

Reigns kicked out of four or five AAs and Cena fell after only the second spear (and the first one didn’t even result in a pin, so he didn’t kick out of Reigns’ finisher even once.)

I got the feeling early on that Cena wasn’t really happy, especially with fan animosity directed at both of them. But then something surprising happened. He didn’t actually say anything, but from the way he sat in the ring looking despondent and the way he exited, it seems very likely that this was Cena’s retirement match.

The fans felt that too. Many of the same fans who were jeering him before began chanting “Thank you, Cena.” A sweet moment when fans let their hostility drop to salute a guy who… well, who the kids really liked.

I don’t know what the WWE hoped to accomplish with Roman Reigns retiring Cena, though. Now even Cena fans hate Roman.



Enzo Amore vs Neville for the Cruiserweight Title

I wish so much Neville had had a microphone during that opening, just so he could shout “Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice!” (Enzo Amore came out wearing black and white stripes.)

Neville is great in the ring, both powerful and agile. Enzo Amore hasn’t always looked great in the ring, but in this match he showed he’s got some good moves. He hit Neville with a DDT off the top rope which just looked brutal.

The match was a little slow. The crowd even started chanting “This is boring” again, but as with Cena and Reigns, it had some good spots. Neville dominated early, and they botched a moment when Amore was outside the ring and, apparently, didn’t know the referee was up to a count of 9. Neville “distracted” the referee and prevented the count out (because the match was not supposed to end that way), but the fans all knew this was a mistake in timing.

Amore got the belt and gave us a pretty good cheater moment. The ref threatened to DQ him on the spot of he didn’t hand the belt over. Amore did that and, with the ref’s back turned, kicked Neville in the groin.

Amore won the Cruiserweight Championship. This came as a surprise. Rumors were that Amore alienated the rest of the roster back stage, which was why the WWE wouldn’t let him win. If true, his punishment is apparently over.



Braun Strowman vs Brock Lesnar for the Universal Title

This was the match we’d been waiting for, but it was already 10 minutes until 10 p.m. when it started. This was going to be a quick match.

I thought it was going to be a one-sided squash like the early matches with Lesnar and Goldberg, but that turned out not to be the case. Strowman dominated early on, but Lesnar got some good attacks of his own in there.

This match wasn’t the train-wreck of destruction they’ve delivered before, but it was solid and never boring at any point. Lesnar managed to put the massive Strowman into several suplexes. Lesnar’s face gushed sweat by the end of this short match. Lesnar kicked out of three or four running power slams from Strowman, his finishing move, and managed to get Strowman in the kimura (a real MMA submission move where he locks the arm behind the back and bends it wrong.) Normally, Lesnar has the other guy down on the mat for that. Lesnar is no small guy, but with Strowman, he held on to this guy like a berry hanging off of a tree. But Strowman grabbed the ropes to break the hold.

He’d actually grabbed the ropes several times before the ref broke the hold and they never really explained why the ref didn’t break the hold earlier. My understanding was it didn’t necessarily have to be the bottom rope in order to break the hold: the ropes were just guidelines marking the end of the ring, and no part of either wrestler’s body could be out of the ring for a pin or a submission.

But anyway, Brock Lesnar put Strowman in an F5 and won the match. Surprising that Strowman didn’t kick out of that even once, but that might be because Lesnar couldn’t put him in it more than once. He seemed to hurt his back picking Strowman up.

Hopefully, we’ll see more of Lesnar. He broke The Undertaker’s streak, had two very long Universal Title Reign, and now he’s the first wrestler to pin Braun Strowman since his debut in December 2014. Lesnar has spent more time on Raw lately, though, which may signal a change in how he intends to work with the WWE.



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