Extreme Rules (2015)
Extreme Rules (2015) was a professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event and WWE Network event produced by WWE. It took place on April 26, 2015, at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois. It was the seventh event under the Extreme Rules chronology.
|Extreme Rules (2015)|
Promotional poster, featuring John Cena
|Date||April 26, 2015|
|WWE Network event chronology|
|Extreme Rules chronology|
Eight matches were contested at the event (including with one match on the pre-show). In the main event, Seth Rollins defeated Randy Orton in a Steel Cage match to successfully defend the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
The concept of the Extreme Rules pay-per-view is that the event features various matches that are contested under hardcore rules; the defunct Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) promotion originally used the "extreme rules" term to describe the regulations for all of its matches. WWE uses the term in place of "hardcore match" or "hardcore rules". The 2015 event was the seventh event under the Extreme Rules chronology, and the first since 2011 to not have the titular match type, though did feature four matches with hardcore-based stipulations.
The card consisted of eight matches, including one on the pre-show. The matches resulted from scripted storylines, where wrestlers portrayed villains, heroes, or less distinguishable characters in scripted events that built tension and culminated in a wrestling match or series of matches, with results predetermined by WWE's writers. Storylines between the characters played out on WWE's primary television programs, Monday Night Raw and SmackDown.
At WrestleMania 31, John Cena defeated Rusev to win the United States Championship, marking Rusev's first defeat since appearing on WWE's main roster. On the April 2 episode of SmackDown, Rusev invoked his rematch clause to face Cena for the title at the event. On the April 13 episode of Raw, following Cena's title defense against Bad News Barrett, Rusev attacked Cena with a chain and Lana revealed that the match between Cena and Rusev would be a Russian Chain match.
At WrestleMania 31, Bad News Barrett had lost his Intercontinental Championship in a 7-man ladder match. In the following week, Barrett repeatedly attacked the new champion, Daniel Bryan, during and after matches and invoked his rematch clause for Extreme Rules. However, when Bryan was declared unable to compete due to an injury, Barrett was instead given a match against Neville on the event's pre-show.
At WrestleMania 31, Randy Orton defeated Seth Rollins. Later that night, Rollins cashed in his Money in the Bank contract during the scheduled WWE World Heavyweight Championship match between Brock Lesnar and Roman Reigns and pinned Reigns to win his first WWE World Heavyweight title. On the April 6 episode of Raw, Orton defeated Ryback and Reigns in a triple threat match to face Rollins for the title at the event. On the April 13 episode of Raw, Orton defeated Tyson Kidd and Cesaro in a Handicap match to earn the right to choose a stipulation, while Rollins defeated Kane to also earn the right to choose a stipulation. Rollins chose to ban Orton's finisher, the RKO, while Orton made the match a Steel Cage match. On the April 20 episode of Raw, Triple H announced that Kane will be the gatekeeper to the cage for this match at the event.
After his return from injury, Sheamus repeatedly attacked Dolph Ziggler on Raw and on the April 16 episode of SmackDown, announced that he would face Ziggler in a Kiss Me Arse match at the event.
On the April 2 episode of SmackDown, Dean Ambrose fought Luke Harper to a no contest, after Harper powerbombed Ambrose through the announcers table. On the April 13 episode of Raw, Ambrose attacked Harper after Harper lost to Ryback by disqualification. On the April 20 episode of Raw, Ambrose and Harper once again fought to a no contest. Later that night, a Chicago Street Fight between Ambrose and Harper was scheduled for the event.
During several April episodes of Raw Big Show made several attacks against Roman Reigns, including a chokeslam onto the roof of a taxicab, leading to a Last Man Standing match being set for Extreme Rules.
On the April 13 episode of Raw, Paige won a battle royal by last eliminating Naomi to earn a title shot against Divas Champion Nikki Bella at Extreme Rules. After the match, Naomi turned heel by attacking Paige, who suffered a storyline injury and was later deemed unable to compete at the event. Thus, Naomi replaced Paige as the title challenger for the pay-per-view event.
|English commentators||Michael Cole|
|John "Bradshaw" Layfield|
|Spanish commentators||Carlos Cabrera|
|Ring announcers||Eden Stiles|
|Pre-show Panel||Renee Young|
The first match was the Chicago Street Fight between Dean Ambrose and Luke Harper. After both of them brawled through the backstage area, Harper got into a car and was followed by Ambrose, and the two drove out of the arena. Due to the street fight stipulation meaning no count-outs, the match was deemed to be continuing as the event progressed.
Next was the Kiss Me Arse match between Dolph Ziggler and Sheamus. Ziggler won the match with a roll-up. After the match, Sheamus refused to kiss Ziggler's ass. Sheamus tried to escape through the audience, but was brought back by the referee. Sheamus then pretended to perform the deed, only to execute a low blow and a Brogue Kick on Ziggler. Sheamus then made Ziggler kiss his arse by rubbing his arse on Ziggler.
After that, Tyson Kidd and Cesaro defended the WWE Tag Team Championship against The New Day (Big E and Kofi Kingston). Kofi won the match for his team by pinning Cesaro with a roll-up, thus winning the WWE Tag Team Championship.
While The New Day were being interviewed following their win, both Ambrose and Harper pulled up in the car that they had left in earlier, continuing their street fight match as they made their way back to the ring. Ambrose would eventually win the match via pinfall after executing Dirty Deeds on Harper.
In the fourth match, John Cena defended his United States Championship against Rusev in a Russian Chain match. The ending of the match came when Cena performed an Attitude Adjustment on Rusev, while he touched the fourth corner after both men had touched all three corners.
Next, Naomi challenged Divas Champion Nikki Bella. The ending came when as the referee pulled Nikki away, Brie kicked Naomi. Nikki executed a Rack Attack on Naomi for the pinfall victory, thus retaining the title.
After that, Big Show took on Roman Reigns in a Last Man Standing match. During the match, Big Show executed a Chokeslam on Reigns through two tables on the outside, while Big Show also went through a table and was later speared through the barricade. After Reigns speared Big Show through the Barricade, Reigns speared Big Show through the Spanish announce table. The ending to the match came when Reigns overturned the English announce table, trapping Big Show underneath for the ten count.
In the main event, Seth Rollins defended the WWE World Heavyweight Championship against Randy Orton in a Steel Cage match, with Orton's RKO finisher banned, while Kane was appointed as the gatekeeper in this match,Orton Parform a pedigree on Rollins for a near-fall. responsible for opening the cage door. Midway through the match, Kane prevented Orton from leaving the cage, but was then accidentally hit by the cage door, which was kicked by Rollins. This caused Kane to enter the ring and chokeslam J&J Security (Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury), who tried to interfere, as well as both Orton and Rollins. Orton then attacked Kane with an RKO before Rollins executed an RKO on Orton as well. Rollins then escaped the cage to win the match and retain the title.
The following night on Raw, Randy Orton declared that he deserved another shot at the WWE World Heavyweight Championship due to the inconclusive manner in which his match with Rollins ended. Later, Roman Reigns said that he deserved a title shot since he defeated The Big Show. Kane, acting on behalf of The Authority, allowed viewers to vote on who Rollins would face at Payback; the WWE Universe voted for Rollins to defend in a triple threat. On the May 4 episode of Raw, Dean Ambrose defeated Rollins to gain entry into the match, making it a Fatal 4-Way. Rollins retained at Payback by pinning Orton.
At Payback, John Cena defeated Rusev in an "I Quit" match to retain the United States Championship, ending their feud. Also at Payback, Sheamus defeated Dolph Ziggler, ending their feud; during the match, Ziggler trapped Sheamus in the corner of the ring and forced Sheamus to kiss his arse, fulfilling the stipulation of their match at Extreme Rules.
On the April 30 episode of SmackDown, Cesaro and Tyson Kidd won their rematch for the Tag Team Championship, but by disqualification, hence The New Day retained the titles. They then had a third match at Payback, which The New Day won.
On the May 11 episode of Raw, Daniel Bryan announced that he had an MRI on his shoulder and was told by doctors that there was no timetable for when he would be able to return to the ring. Due to this, he decided to relinquish the Intercontinental Championship. The vacant title was won by Ryback at Elimination Chamber. On February 8 2016, Bryan announced his retirement from in-ring competition due to medical reasons.
Critical reception to the event was mixed. Nolan Howell of slam sports awarded the event 2 out of 5 stars, adding that it was "thoroughly average" and "a show worth missing".
Kenny Herzog of Rolling Stone praised the Last Man Standing match between Reigns and Big Show, calling it "thrilling" and "the match of the night". However he was critical of the show's production, the Cena-Rusev match and the steel cage main event, which he described as "inconclusive" and "lifeless".
|1P||Neville defeated Bad News Barrett||Singles match||10:36|
|2||Dean Ambrose defeated Luke Harper[Note 1]||Chicago Street Fight||56:10|
|3||Dolph Ziggler defeated Sheamus[Note 2]||Kiss My Arse match||9:16|
|4||The New Day (Big E and Kofi Kingston) (with Xavier Woods) defeated Cesaro and Tyson Kidd (c) (with Natalya)||Tag team match for the WWE Tag Team Championship||9:47|
|5||John Cena (c) defeated Rusev (with Lana)||Russian Chain match for the WWE United States Championship||13:35|
|6||Nikki Bella (c) (with Brie Bella) defeated Naomi||Singles match for the WWE Divas Championship||8:10|
|7||Roman Reigns defeated Big Show||Last Man Standing match||19:56|
|8||Seth Rollins (c) defeated Randy Orton by escaping the cage||Steel Cage match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship with the RKO banned and Kane as the gatekeeper||21:02|
- Ambrose and Harper left the arena during the match, with the next two matches starting and ending before Ambrose and Harper returned to the ring to finish their match.
- Sheamus refused to fulfill the stipulation, and instead made Ziggler kiss his arse.
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