Jump to content
Pro Wrestling Only

[2016-05-01-WWE-Payback] Kevin Owens vs Sami Zayn


Recommended Posts

I was pretty sure I wasn't going to like this nearly as much as other folks but I ended up kind of hating it.


First off I actually want to bring up some stuff I thought was good. You often see criticisms of WWE matches in supposed blood feuds starting with a headlock or heels doing face spots etc. Not the case here. As soon as the match starts they went after one another and Zayn was doing the ten punches in the corner as a face should.


I just. Don't care about this type of match. I get why people like it but personally, I am kinda done with matches like this. I hated the puro no sell spots. Served no purpose and looked stupid. Hated Owens doing a flip bump for Zayn's Clothesline. I don't remember whether or not Nakamura vs Zayn had a flip bump off Zayn's Lariat but Nakamura is at least more lean and does those bumps all the time, the visual of this fat guy doing a flip bump for the skinny underdog (not necessarily in this match but in general) was just weird. Then there's my absolute least favourite moment of the match-after Zayn hit Owens with a Michinoku Driver and a Blue Thunder Driver/Fireball Bomb (Kikuchi did it before Akiyama but no one seems to talk about that) Owens just gets up and hits him with a Wrist Clutch Fisherman Neckbreaker On The Knee. Literally just stood up and hit his big move after two big nearfalls. And the visual of Owens getting Zayn in the Wrist Clutch made it impossible for them to sell it as a desperation comeback that caught Zayn off guard due to the time it took to set up the move. Then they did like, a move on the apron and whatnot but I mentally checked out already and was just waiting for this to end. I di like Zayn's early Tope Con Giro and him wrecking the announce table. It was a great opening. I just wish a great match followed it. I could buy them doing a hateful Dragon Lee-Kamaitachi spotfest like they did in ROH and PWG or a hate filled brawl like they did in NXT but a hybrid just didn't work for me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have to agree with a lot of what you wrote and I couldn't name half the moves or callbacks or Japan references you did.


My issue with this match wasn't that it wasn't good - it was definitely good - I just felt like it wasn't great. And, unfortunately, when you have a match being pushed and pushed as being great *before* the bell even rings, by the announcers, by the IWC, even by the reputations of their previous bouts, when it's not great, it's disappointing. Is that absolutely fair for what was their first match on PPV on the main roster? Maybe not...but it doesn't change the fact that this match wasn't the MOTY candidate that I wanted and was at least half-expecting.


At the end of the day, if I were to list the best matches/segments these two have had with eachother since joining the WWE, this match would probably rank towards the bottom of the list. Again, that's not to say it was a below average match, but I found myself much more intrigued with Zayn and Owens' brawling during the Miz/Cesaro match than really anything except for a few stretches (the apron spot, Zayn's through-the-ropes tornado DDT) in their actual match.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I disagree with DMJ in that I thought this was the best of the matches they've had together in WWE/NXT. But the thing no one wants to admit, because they're best friends and have such a long history, is that they don't have great chemistry together - at least IMO from what I've seen in WWE/NXT (I haven't seen their indy matches). Their two NXT matches were pretty disappointing to me, and I think I liked this one more because of sufficiently lowered expectations.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 year later...

I surely didn't hate this as much as GOTNW but this falls pretty far below expectations, and not just because of the guys involved, but for the 'blood feud' vibe they were supposedly aiming for. I don't see much difference between how Zayn worked here than he did against someone like Cesaro in NXT. He's just the plucky underdog going up against a bully who's physically stronger than him, which seems completely counter intuitive to the narrative they are presenting. It ultimately works to create a watchable mid-card PPV match, but nothing close to greatness is evident here.


GOOD (3-3.5*)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • GSR changed the title to [2016-05-01-WWE-Payback] Kevin Owens vs Sami Zayn

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...