OK, Hell In a Cell Arena thoughts.
We had seats directly in the middle of the arena but higher up in the first bowl. We were above the top of the cage so we could see all of the action on top of the cage in the main event.
The crowd was really into the whole show. Even AJ-Joe and Charlotte-Becky had the crowd paying attention...but both matches were quieter than the rest of the matches.
Pre Show Match - I missed this because I had to go to my ex-wife's and drop off my son's homework. Family first or something.
The crowd was into the big spots and San Antonio has always loved Hardy. Hardy being dropped into the open ladder, the ear/screwdriver spot and the finish got huge reactions. The crowd was absolutely deflated that Hardy lost though. Orton has this unique way of entertaining me when I am in the arena live even though I absolutely hate watching him on TV.
Becky was really over and she can pretend she is a heel all she wants. This was great live and the crowd went apeshit when Becky won. I don't know how it translated on TV but everyone loved the finish. I personally loved the focus on Charlotte's arm.
Dolph Ziggler & Drew McIntire vs. Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose
This was my match of the night right here. It was great watching the crowd remain relatively quiet at the beginning of the match, watch them use a classic Southern style formula to draw them in, and have everyone go nuts by the end. I love Drew, don't care about the other three at all, but everyone looked great in this one. I mentioned this in the HIAC thread but it reminded me of Hardys-MNM from Rumble 2007 in the same building. Insider scoop... my buddy had breakfast with Tyson Kidd earlier today. Tyson was the agent in charge of this match so give him props.
Samoa Joe vs. AJ Styles
I loved this match live but the crowd was not as vocal. It had continued pockets of noise but never sustained the volume throughout the arena. However, everything came across as super stiff and nasty in the arena. Lots of "OUCH" and "OH SHIT" moments. We didn't catch the tapout when it happened but we saw it in the replay. Crowd was actually split evenly between Styles and Joe throughout the match.
Miz & Maryse vs. Daniel Bryan & Brie
This was great as a live experience. I have seen Miz many times live and I really hated him as a wrestler for so many years. It is amazing how much he has changes since I first started coming to these WWE shows back in 2009. I still believe the perfect way to end the feud is in a Brie's hair vs. Maryse's hair match. It worked with Lawler-Dundee. It can work with Bryan-Miz.
Ronda Rousey vs. Alexa Bliss
I was shocked by the boos for Ronda. I think it is the stupid eye makeup. This was rough early but I really started enjoying it when Alexa began to work over Ronda's ribs. Some great spots and they remained focused. Wrestling isn't hard. Attack a body part and everything else will fall in line. Crowd popped for the finish and there were not many boos at the end.
Roman Reigns vs. Braun Strowman
This was really great until the bullshit at the end. I thought the red cage would be a distraction but I think it helped the wrestlers stand out. I don't know how it affected the viewing on TV.. The crowd was into the match until it was clear the PPV was over and there was no finish. A HUGE "This is Bullshit" chant took place after the match and continued as the announcers walked off the set. In the past, I have seen announcers shake hands and give high fives. Tonight, they walked with their heads down and made a straight line for the exit. As the crowd walked out, the entire place was dejected. Even though it was a great PPV, the finish left a bad taste in everyone's mouth. Such a huge difference from the CMLL show where there was so much energy in the crowd as they left Arena Mexico. This was the exact opposite of that.