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Csonka’s The Best of WWE: Kevin Owens’ Biggest Fights Review

May 9, 2020 | Posted by Larry Csonka
WWE NXT TakeOver WarGames - Teama Ciampa Wins Kevin Owens
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Csonka’s The Best of WWE: Kevin Owens’ Biggest Fights Review  

Csonka’s The Best of WWE: Kevin Owens’ Biggest Fights Review

From NXT Takeover: Rival 2015 – NXT Title Match: Kevin Owens defeated champion Sami Zayn @ 22:45 via referee’s stoppage to become the new champion [****½]
From WWE Elimination Chamber 2015: Kevin Owens defeated John Cena @ 20:50 via pin [****½]
From NXT Takeover: Brooklyn 2015 – NXT Title Ladder Match: Champion Finn Balor defeated Kevin Owens @ 21:45 [****¼]
From WWE Hell in a Cell 2016: Champion Kevin Owens defeated Seth Rollins @ 23:25 via pin [***¾]
From WrestleMania 33: Kevin Owens defeated Champion Chris Jericho @ 16:55 via pin [***¼]
From WWE Smackdown 10.04.19 – Career vs. Career Ladder Match: Kevin Owens defeated Shane McMahon @ 12:10 [***½]
From NXT Takeover: WarGames 2019: Team Ciampa defeated The Undisputed [email protected] 38:40 via pin [****¼]

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NXT Title Match: Champion Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens: Two months ago Owens debuted with NXT, and on the same night, Zayn completed his journey and won the NXT Title. The two embraced and had a moment that was ALL THE FEELS, until Owens took out Zayn and laid him out with an apron powerbomb. They have played up their 10-plus year friendship in building to the match and have done a great job, now we get the match. Owens stalled early, which led to Zayn getting pissed and attacking. His over-zealousness eventually got the best of him, allowing Owens to take control and deliver some brutal looking offense, in the best way possible. Zayn’s selling is just so good, and again as I have previously said he is the best pure babyface in wrestling. His resilience and then fire when he comes back is awesome, and the crowd busy into it with no hesitation. Owens is also just so good, he feels so different (like Balor, Neville and others) as compared to the main roster guys who mostly feel interchangeable these days, and it is refreshing. Commentary did a nice job reminding people of their story, and also selling Zayn’s ability to take punishment but continue to fight. They teased the apron powerbomb spot, which was a nice call back to two months ago. Zayn did a split-legged moonsault to the floor, and sold that he bumped his head badly, and commentary focused on that. When they got back in the ring, he had difficulty keeping balance when he went for the Helluva kick, leading to Owens hitting the pop up powerbomb for a near fall. Owens then simply started to pummel Zayn with forearm strikes and uppercuts, leading to the ref separating them so he could check Zayn and call in the trainer. Owens would have no part of this, and hit two powerbombs on Zayn, who kicked out. They got some great shots of people in the crowd being shocked. The trainers tried to check on him again, so Owens hit two more powerbombs, and as he went for a third the trainers stopped the bout to jeers. I know some will dislike that finish, but I love it. These finishes can work, you have to educate the audience to do make that happen, so I can see some hate right now but in the long run it can work, especially in the future for teased stoppages. It’s different, and sold the story well. Owens was focused on his job here, he wanted to win the title at any cost, he wanted what Zayn had and nearly destroyed him to get it. The spot to the floor was a good set up, and Owens came off as a remorseless asshole. Zayn chasing the title will be fun, and Owens came off looking amazing here, which was the goal of the booking. Kevin Owens defeated champion Sami Zayn @ 22:45 via referee’s stoppage to become the new champion [****½]

John Cena vs. Kevin Owens: No titles on the line here, in what is the biggest moment of Owens’ career. John Cena is in CALL SPOTS AS LOUD AS POSSIBLE MODE EARLY with a “Drop down, shoulder block, I’ll give you one” in the opening minutes. Stop it. Kudos to Lawler, discussing that he faced Owens and that he won’t be intimidated. Lawler doing real announcing work is rare. Owens worked a measured and methodical attack, simply beating down Cena with simplistic violence, which works for him so well. Owens dominated the match early, with Cena selling the beating well and giving a lot to Owens, which they need to do here. Owens and his constant mocking of Cena was also good, reinforcing that Owens wants to prove that he belongs. Cena would counter the lights out powerbomb, and run through the five moves, but then ran into the lights out for a great near fall. For a near fall it worked well, but on the other hand I feel that hurts the guy’s finish in his first match. Owens missed the old Marc Mero hop up moonsault, and ate an AA but then kicked out. They got a great reaction from the fans on that one. Owens was doing all of the little things here, the stuff in between the moves is just as important, and he knows that. Things like using the AA to try and beat Cena was also a nice touch. They completely turned around an at best Luke warm crowd, with Cena opening the bag of tricks and Owens continuing to survive. Owens used a modified package piledriver for a near fall, so that answers if he would use it or not (he kinda will). This was the definition on the “WrestleMania” match, as both guys did everything and kicked out of everything. You can’t do it all the time, but in a way I felt that they needed to here as Owens won clean with the pop up powerbomb. If you want to make Owens a star, he has to not only beat Cena, but also had to do so in an epic, star making match. Now Owens is already a star to many, but on the main roster he is a new guy. The way he won, surviving all Cena had and then hitting his finish for the win was perfect. I have said before, Cena has so much equity to give and did so here in a performance that was done without ego. He again stepped up on a big stage. You also give credit to NXT here as now some people should look at some of the new stars in a different light due to this performance by their champion. As for Owens, he served notice tonight to all of the people that said he’d work in front of 200 fans for his entire life. Cena is the old warhorse trying to remain the champion, but fell to the WWE newcomer. This was a star making performance by Owens, and an awesome effort by both men. Kevin Owens defeated John Cena @ 20:50 via pin [****½]

NXT Title Ladder Match: Champion Kevin Owens vs. Finn Balor: This started really late, but since we’re on the network they didn’t have to rush, starting in the ring and not rushing for the ladder. Owens controlled early, the fans started to do the OLE chant, and then he mocked popping out his shoulder in reference to Zayn. He’s a spectacular asshole. At about five-minutes in they introduced the ladder, which led the brawl on the floor. At about 11-minutes in Owens worked over Balor, using the ladder heavily in his offense. Balor seemingly tweaked his ankle, but worked through it well. The aggression from Owens here was excellent, really acting as if he gave no fucks and was doing anything and everything to put the champion away. Balor would fight back to hit the double stomp and climb, but Owens was able to powerbomb him off the ladder to stop that. I was a bit worried that the crowd may have been burnt out from the previous match, but these guys did a great job of getting them into the match. Owens snapped late, superkick Balor and demanding he stay down, and telling him he did this. Owens built a ladder bridge, but Balor would battle back and send Owens down onto the bridge. This led to another double stomp, this time off of the ladder and Balor finally grabbed the title to retain. This was a great main event. Champion Finn Balor defeated Kevin Owens @ 21:45 [****¼]

WWE Universal Title Hell in a Cell Match: Champion Kevin Owens vs. Seth Rollins: Owens rolled to the floor in an attempt to get weans, but Rollins cut him off and they brawled on the floor. Back in the ring and Rollins took control, laying in kicks and talking shit to Owens as he beat on him. the blockbuster connected for Rollins, but only got 2. Rollins then got a table and set it up on the floor. Owens tried to run the other way, Rollins stopped that but Owens hit an Irish whip and then the running senton, he then hit another and Rollins was favoring the back that was injured on Raw. They worked to the floor as Owens ripped off the tape from Rollins’ back. Owens again sent him into the cell as he maintained control. Back in the ring, Owens continued to attack the back. Rollins got his hope spots, but Owens cut him off and then tossed him through the ropes into the cell. Owens repeatedly slammed Rollins to the cell, and then rolled him back into the ring and continued the heat. Back to the floor, Owens set Rollins against the cell and hit the running cannonball. Back in, they both teased their finishes, traded superkicks and then Owens decapitated Rollins with a lariat for the double down. Owens rolled to the floor and grabbed another table and set it up at an angle between the apron and the cell. Rollins fought back with a knee strike and then a suplex on a different side of the ring apron and Owens rolled to the floor. Rollins then hit two suicide dives, Owens then grabbed a fire extinguisher and hit Rollins in the ribs. He then sprayed it and that took out the one ref, and another ref took him out of the cell. Jericho ran out and locked the door as Owens chased off the new ref. Jericho got the biggest reaction of the match. Rollins then sent Jericho off the apron and into the cell, allowing Owens to hit the modified package piledriver for a near fall. Owens went up top, but Rollins then ran up and they fought. Enziguri by Rollins and then the springboard knee strike followed. Rollins then cut off Jericho and hit the pedigree, but Owens hit the superkick. Rollins escaped the powerbomb and then went for a powerbomb, lost Owens but then Owens helped get himself up and Rollins powerbombed him out of the ring through the tables that were previously set up. The delay there actually didn’t hurt things as it added some tension to the moment. Rollins rolled Owens back in, high fly flow connects but Jericho pulled out the ref to make the save. Rollins then took Jericho to the floor and beat him down and tossed him into the pile of table rubble. Rollins ten hit Jericho with the running powerbomb into the cell. Back in, Owens hit the superkick and pop up powerbomb and Rollins kicked out at 2! Jericho got back to his feet as Owens worked over Rollins with ground and pound. Jericho gave Owens a chair and then he attacked Rollins. Owens laid in chair shots to the back and side of Rollins. Jericho then got another chair, but Rollins got the chair from Owens and fought them off until Owens DDT’d him onto a chair. Owens then set up the chairs and powerbombed Rollins through them and retained. Champion Kevin Owens defeated Seth Rollins @ 23:25 via pin [***¾] Even with the interference, which I am not always a fan of, that was a complete spectacle and I really liked it. While the interference takes way from the point of the cell, it didn’t take away from the match because the crowd was into it. They created some great near falls off of it, and Rollins was booked strongly there in loss, fighting off two men and almost overcoming to win. It also had a level of intensity that nothing else on the card had so far, which made it stand out even more. The only real issue here is that three matches have to follow that, and what will the ladies have to do to try and rival all of that violence.
WWE United States Championship Match: Champion Chris Jericho vs. Kevin Owens: They brawled right away, Jericho locked in the walls early but Owens made the ropes, only to be sent to the floor. Jericho then hit a high cross to the floor. Back in and Owens cuts him off with a superkick and followed with ground and pound, followed by the cannonball and then an apron cannonball while Jericho was against the post. That allowed Owens to take control, working kicks to the back in the ring and to also take time to mock Jericho. Owens then hit the running senton for 2. Owens spent too much time talking, allowing Jericho to hit the dropkick and cut him off. They brawled to the floor; Jericho fought off the apron bomb and started to work over Owens, sending him back into the ring. Jericho took control, but Owens blocked the code breaker and hit the package side slam. Owens up top, but gets cut off and Jericho follows him up an they trade strikes before Jericho hits the RANA off the ropes for 2. Jericho then hit the running bulldog, but Owens avoids the lionsault and follows with the superkick. Owens up top now, but the frog splash eats knees. Owens blocks the lionsault, back up top and the swanton eats knees. No cool moves for anyone, only knees! Jericho counters the pop up powerbomb and finally hits the lionsault for the near fall. Jericho slaps Owens around, but Owens counters the RANA and locks in the walls. Jericho counters, catapulted to the corner and then runs into the superkick. Owens goes for the cannonball, but Jericho counters and locks in the walls. Owens made the ropes, Jericho looks to fie up but runs into the pop up powerbomb, but Jericho kicks out. Owens is not pleased with this, yells at Jericho and slaps him around but Jericho counters the pop up powerbomb into the code breaker, but Owens makes the ropes (with one finger). Owens hits a superkick to the knee as Jericho looked to go to the floor, hits the apron bomb and back in, covers for the win. Kevin Owens defeated Champion Chris Jericho @ 16:55 via pin [***¼] This was a good match overall, with both guys working hard and playing off of their feud an fact that they knew each other so well. It wasn’t as nearly as hate filled as I would have hoped, which I think would have really added to the match, but Owens being a devious bastard and going to his murder death kill to pick up the win was a great finish.

Career vs. Career Ladder Match: Shane McMahon vs. Kevin Owens: Shane gets introduced and Kevin attacks. They brawl to the ring and Kevin dumps him and makes a ladder bridge and slams Shane into it. He slides another ladder in and climbs until Shane cuts him of and hits a Russian leg sweep. Shane climbs and Kevin stops that and follows with strikes. Shane fights off the stunner but eats a clothesline. Shane then dropkicks a ladder into Kevin’s face and then hits him with it. Shane dismantles the announce table, lays Kevin onto it and follows with strikes. He hits him with part of the table, a few times and heads up top. Shane looks for the big elbow drop, and it connects. Post break and Kevin lays Shane on the ladder bridge and hits the frog splash off of the top and breaking the ladder, and possibly Shane. Back in and Kevin climbs but Shane cuts him off with a chair shot. More chair shots follow, he lays Kevin in the corner and lays a ladder on him. He looks for coast to coast, and hits it. Kevin spills to the floor and Shane looks to climb. Kevin is back in and stops him. He powerbombs Shane onto a ladder in the corner, climbs and wins. Kevin Owens defeated Shane McMahon @ 12:10 [***½] This was really good and fun, with fun spots, a hot crowd, and the right result.

WarGames Match: Adam Cole, Roderick Strong, Bobby Fish, & Kyle O’Reilly vs. Tommaso Ciampa, Keith Lee, Dominik Dijakovic, & Kevin Owens: Ciampa brought back the mask and is wearing war paint. Roddy & Ciampa begin. Roddy is a workhorse, great call. Ciampa tosses him the crutch and Roddy tosses it as they brawl right away. Ciampa is fired up and takes early control until Roddy follows with a backbreaker. He delivers chops and Ciampa dumps him onto the ropes and follows with the running knee strike. They trade, Ciampa follows with corner strikes and lights up Roddy and hits the running knee. Roddy fires back until Ciampa hits a Cheeky nandos knee strike. They trade chops, Ciampa hits a clothesline but Roddy hits the gut buster and lays in ground and pound. He grounds Ciampa, and Kyle joins the match. Ciampa fights for his life gets cut off and Kyle unloads with a flurry of knees and strikes. Double teams follow and TUE has control. Ciampa battles back, but is quickly cut of with double teams, repeated strikes and Kyle hits bombs away. They lay the boots to Ciampa as Dijakovic enters the match. He runs wild with kicks and strikes, and kills Kyle with a lariat. He follows with elbows and strikes, and suplexes Kyle onto Roddy. Roddy fights off feast you eyes, but Dijakovic slams him to the cage and then slams Kyle to the cage. Ciampa joins back in as the faces take control, until Fish joins the match. He attacks Ciampa and lays in kicks, works over Dijakovic and then more kicks to Ciampa. He and Kyle double team Dijakovic with a high/low and Roddy hits a back breaker on Ciampa. Chasing the dragon follows and they then beat down Dijakovic with triple teams. They then start destroying Ciampa and talk shit as the crowd chants for Lee. Lee finally gets in and rushes the ring. Lee runs wild with strikes and shoulder tackles, and a running cross body onto the tag champions. The slingshot cross body follows and Kyle cuts off the sprit bomb, and TUE triple team Lee. They maul him on the mat and Ciampa makes the save. They swarm him and cut him off until Dijakovic comes back with strikes and slams. Fish attacks Lee as Cole is in. He brings out the table and slides it in. he gets another and a third. He gets a fourth and then a fifth. Ciampa attacks Cole and sends him through a table at ringside before he gets to enter the ring. They brawl in the ring and the faces stalk TUE. Fish low blows Lee and the countdown ends as… Kevin Owens joins the match to a hero’s welcome. He runs wild on TUE, powerbomb to Fish and a sleeper suplex on Roddy follows, He powerbombs Fish onto Kyle and comes face to face with Cole. Stunner by Kevin and it breaks down. Lee & Dijakovic toss Roddy from one ring into the other on his pals and Ciampa hits Kyle with the draping DDT. The faces set up tables, but TUE battles back. They all brawl, Cole slams Ciampa to the cage and lee climbs up top and hits a high cross onto the pile. Kyle follows with bombs away and locks on a heel hook on Lee. Dijakovic makes the save with a springboard moonsault and Fish flies in to make the save. Kevin flies in with a swanton and Cole makes the save. The Panama sunrise is cut of by Lee, he follows him up top and Roddy makes the save. He follows him up and hits an avalanche Angle slam. Double teams follow and Kyle covers for 2 as Dijakovic makes the save. High/low on Dijakovic follows and Kevin makes the save. Cole attacks, and hits the superkick and Panama sunrise connects onto the metal part in between the rings. TUE sets up more tables, and lays Ciampa onto them. He fights back, runs them into the cage and hits project Ciampa onto Kyle. He follows with running knee strikes until Cole superkicks him. Ciampa slams him to the cage, follows with running knee strikes and they work up top, and Ciampa slams his head to the cage but Cole fights him off, climbs to the top of the cage and Fish & Roddy work over Lee up top. Dijakovic chokeslams Roddy through a table, Kyle gets a triangle but Dijakovic powers up and lays him on a table as Kevin hits the frog splash. Lee powerbombs Fish off the top through a table as Cole & Ciampa brawl on top of the cage. Ciampa picks him up and hits a super air raid crash through a table to pick up the win. He’s dead, Jim. Team Ciampa defeated The Undisputed [email protected] 38:40 via pin [****¼] They did a great job of playing to the WarGames formula and the Kevin Owens surprise came off really well and played off of the Raw angle when TUE attacked him, so it made sense. The match was extremely entertaining and broke own into a complete spectacle on a good way and gives Tommaso Ciampa, Keith Lee, & Dominik Dijakovic more momentum to go after TUE and their titles. The addition of Owens creates some interesting drama heading into Survivor Series, and the finish should also cause some doubt in Cole’s match in regards to him retaining. Overall this was great as they did a good job of making the two WarGames matches different enough from each other, and accomplished the job of presenting two on one show, which is not an easy task. I do think that the women’s match had higher and better emotional notes, where this one made up for that with pure chaos, but they both succeeded.

 photo The411onWrestling-KHC15_1A_zps84kblpqb.jpg

The 411 on Wrestling Podcast returns to the 411 Podcasting Network for episode 113. On the show, 411’s Larry Csonka & Steve Cook discuss the news of the week, breakdown this week’s AEW vs. NXT (5.06.20), and then preview WWE MITB 2020. The show is approximately 131-minutes long.

* Intro
* News Roundup: 2:10
* AEW Dynamite (5.06.20) Review: 38:05
* NXT (5.06.20) Review: 1:08:00
* The Head to Head Comparison: 1:32:55
* WWE MITB 2020 Preview: 1:37:20

* iTunes
* Spotify
* Stitcher
* Google Play

– End scene.

– Thanks for reading.

The final score: review Very Good
The 411
The Best of WWE: Kevin Owens' Biggest Fights is a near four-hour presentation, looking at a lot of the great things Owens has done in WWE during his tenure. It’s an enjoyable time, and certainly recommended, especially if you’re a big KO fan.