It’s extreme rules all the way in One Night Stand, and for the most part, the gimmick pays off.
John Cena taking on JBL in a first blood match is probably the weakest part of the disc but is still far better than most moments in other PPVs. The failure to legitimately draw blood is a bit of a let down, but the guys get around it in a way that doesn’t scream ‘fake’ too much.
Edge and The Undertaker have been producing strong matches for a while now, but this TLC match is everything you hoped it would be – including a huge bump from the top of the ladder and through four tables by Taker. As usual, Edge’s acting is second-to-none and the unexpected ending is sold 100% by the announce team as well as both performers.
The last-man-standing match between Triple H and Randy Orton doesn’t look like it’s really going anywhere, but then Orton takes a dodgy spill over the top rope and landed badly on his shoulder. He can clearly be heard telling the ref that he has broken his collarbone. Following this real-life injury, the match grinds away to a quick finish, and Orton is clearly in a great deal of pain.
As you would expect, the stretcher match between Shawn Michaels and Batista is solid fare. Michaels would be able to turn a bout against The Great Khali into something worth watching, so seeing him against the rapidly improving Batista is one of the disc’s highlights and manages to spring a few surprises.
In what could have been a complete abortion of a match, the ‘falls count anywhere’ scrap between Jeff Hardy and Umaga is great fun. The pair brawl outside the ring, backstage, near the merchandise stands and finally in the parking lot where Hardy pulls off an insane Swanton Bomb. The best bit of the match though comes midway when Hardy slides down the bannister of a long staircase and converts it into a cross body block on Umaga.
Another legit injury comes during the Singapore cane match featuring Tommy Dreamer, Chavo Guerrero, John Morrison, and Big Show. After hitting his head on the ring steps, the deep gash above his eye clearly pisses the big man off, and his destruction of everyone else in the match has a ring of genuine aggression to it.
The best fight of this PPV though, was provided by the women, with Beth Phoenix and Melina proving once again that when Vinnie Mac takes his mind off bikinis, mud wrestling and other middle-aged wank fantasies, the Divas can produce matches as good as anyone else on the roster. It goes without saying that Beth Phoenix’s domination of the women’s division continues, but Melina gives as good as she gets and sells the Glamazon’s submission holds like her life depends on it.
At the very least, One Night Stand deserves a second date.
Buy One Night Stand here.
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