Review for WWE: Best PPV Matches 2018
WWE: Best PPV Matches 2018 contains sixteen matches from WWE’s PPVs from Royal Rumble to Evolution. As always some are missing, some don’t belong here, but if I’m honest this is always a good set that most fans should buy if you don’t buy all the PPV DVDs.
The men’s Royal Rumble 2018 is included in full. Which is a bizarre choice when you consider how much of a big deal the Women’s Royal Rumble was and how much of a better booked match it was. Perhaps they should have just done highlights from both?
However, 30- Man Royal Rumble Match was probably one of the most enjoyable Rumbles I have seen in a long time and not just because I was satisfied with the winner, although that did help. The match did not have as many surprises as I thought it would, with only The Hurricane and Rey Mysterio appearing unexpectedly alongside NXT Champion Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas. The hilarious use of Heath Slater was fantastic and one of my highlights of the match as was Elias who has really started to grow on me the last few months.
Kofi Kingston’s pancake shenanigans was funny as always, but I always wish it went somewhere… and no I don’t just mean back in the ring. There was no real dominant performer in the Rumble and though Roman Reigns had the most eliminations, the four he had seems a little low compared to his record 12 from 2014.
Men’s Elimination Chamber 2018 is included (again, not the women’s?) and this is memorable simply for Braun pinning everyone and then being pinned by Roman Reigns. This once again robbed us of a match we wanted to see. The match itself is fine, but I still think the Women’s first Elimination Chamber was better.
Fastlane 2018 United States Championship Bobby Roode against Randy Orton was a good match, but nothing special. It is here simply because Orton won the one belt he hadn’t before.
Two matches are included from Wrestlemania 34. I am glad that the Triple Threat for Intercontinental Championship The Miz vs. Seth Rollins vs. Finn Balor was included. I was thoroughly entertained by this match manly because I had no expectations. I thought it would be a good match, but not this good. All three worked well and The Miz proved why he should move back up to the main event, much like Seth and Balor too. This was the first time in a long while where the Intercontinental title has felt like it means something.
Also included is the debut match of Ronda Rousey teaming with Kurt Angle against Stephanie McMahon and Triple H. I was originally surprised this match was so low on the card seeing as how much it was promoted. My biggest issue with this match was that I know that Rousey could legitimately break Stephanie in half, probably Triple H too. However, it was like it was booked by someone flicking through Tag Heel Moves 101. It was so boring. Kurt against Triple was awkward and what was worse is that they are the ones I was expecting to put on most of the wrestling clinic. Once Rousey was tagged in it was brutal, but awkward and amateurish and seriously I don't believe for one second that someone who used to tap people out in less than a minute would have any issue taking down Stephanie McMahon? By the end the match got better, but again it just felt like no one really knew what to do with this match. We all know that we wanted Rousey and Angle to win and the more they dragged it out the less satisfying the ending was.
From Backlash 2018 we have the Intercontinental Championship Match Seth Rollins against The Miz which was an amazing Intercontinental Championship match between Seth Rollins and The Miz. I originally thought that Rollins moving to the IC level was a step down, but he has made his run one of the best things in WWE for a long time.
From Money in the Bank 2018 they include Women’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match. Thankfully, James Ellsworth wasn’t involved in the Money in the Bank match which was a great match between Sasha Banks, Becky Lynch, Alexa Bliss, Ember Moon, Lana, Naomi, Natalya and Bayley. I was happy with the ending. Though it did make the Raw Women’s match feel very predictable. Which is a shame. Also included is that Raw Women’s Championship Nia Jax vs. Ronda Rousey. Ronda Rousey was in her first singles match, which was pretty up and down. It started awful, the middle was fantastic and then there was the ending. I think Rousey still has a while to go before I can call her good, but I have to admire how she is in the ring. The ending was just a bit too predictable.
Two matches from Extreme Rules 2018. The Steel Cage Match Braun Strowman against Kevin Owens. This had its moments and the ending was certainly memorable. Not as memorable as everyone keeps saying, but certainly memorable. For some reason they include the Roman Reigns against Bobby Lashley match, which was pointless and given far too much time for what is essentially just two big guys going at each other and afterwards I saw little point in the match or its outcome.
Summerslam 2018 had three matches and all three deserve to be on here. WWE Championship match between AJ Styles and Samoa Joe was a great match with a fantastic storyline that went into it. The whole thing felt real and these two work so well together. Daniel Bryan vs. The Miz was a little rushed and could (and has been better), but still a great match between them. Finally, we had the Universal Championship Match between Brock Lesnar and Roman Reigns which was in general fine, it just felt like too little too late and everyone and I mean EVERYONE was expecting a cash in by Braun Strowman.
Three matches are also included from Hell in a Cell 2018. These were a great Hell in a Cell Match between Jeff Hardy and Randy Orton. I was a little unsure as to why it was taking place, but was full of amazing moments from the two. The Smackdown Women’s Championship Match between Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch felt a little bit ‘too little too late’ and that they should have allowed Lynch to have won the previous month, but this was still a great match between the two and I love the evolution of the Becky Lynch character. Surprisingly, the Hell in a Cell Match for Universal Championship between Roman Reigns and Braun Strowman was a great match. I liked the aspect of Mick Foley being the referee and him making mistakes was a nice element. The match was full of insane moments, most of these were taken up by Rollins/Ambrose trying to take out Ziggler/McIntyre. The ending with Brock Lesnar (no point trying not to spoil it as it is on the cover anyway) was amazing and I actually expected him to lay Strowman on top of Reigns, but him taking out both was a great moment.
Final match of the set is from the groundbreaking all-women PPV Evolution 2018. The Last Woman Standing Match for Smackdown Women’s Championship between Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair was one of the best matches… not ‘women’s’… best matches of the year. Both worked so well together and the evolution of Becky Lynch has been the best thing to happen to WWE in years. This match was amazing.
In 2016 I said this when reviewing the WWE PPV DVD “The Best PPV Matches of 2016 is the annual jumping the gun set that WWE releases every year. As with every year it is released before the end of the year and so misses out on a number of PPVs... most notably Survivor Series. I don't understand why WWE does this and continue to do so or why the next set doesn't pick up where the previous one ended.” In 2017 I said when reviewing the WWE PPV DVD “It is again a shame that they don't wait until the actual end of the year to complete this set as they missed out some amazing matches from the Survivor Series PPV, but this is my gripe every year.”
What do you think my comment is going to be this year?
Yes. Once again WWE release this set in December missing out on Survivor Series and TLC (I can forgive them forgetting about Crown Jewel). I don’t understand why they do this and every year and every year I say the same: Why do they think the year ends before Survivor Series and why does the following set not start here? How hard would it be for them to wait until the last PPV and then release the set in January? Considering 95% of the set would have been already in the can anyway? This is a minor grumble, but it is one I have every year and I do wish that WWE would listen to me and especially when both those two PPVs had multiple 4 and above Star Matches it seems a shame that people will have to buy the PPV DVDs to view them.
That being said, this is a good set and if you only want to purchase one WWE set this year it does cover most of the great matches. Some (such as the Women’s first Rumble and first Elimination Chamber) are definitely missed, but this is definitely a great set for wrestling fans. I only hope that next year I am writing this in January and a full year will have passed. However, it was a great year for WWE and hopefully 2019 builds on all of the success of this year.