Opinion: Match & Show Ratings for August 30 to September 5

Welcome to TPWW’s Emperor Smeat’s Match and Show Ratings for the week of August 30th to September 5th.

Match and show star ratings (out of 5):


WWE Payback 2020 (August 30)
* Pre-show: The Riott Squad vs. The IIconics – 2.0
* United States Championship – Bobby Lashley vs. Apollo Crews (c) – 3.0
* Sheamus vs. Big E – 2.5
* King Corbin vs. Matt Riddle – 2.5
* Women’s Tag Team Championship – Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler vs. Sasha Banks & Bayley (c) – 3.0
* Keith Lee vs. Randy Orton – 3.0
* Murphy & Seth Rollins vs. Dominik & Rey Mysterio – 3.5
* Universal Championship No Holds Barred Triple Threat match – Braun Strowman vs. Roman Reigns vs. “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt (c) – 2.0
Overall – 2.5
Best – Murphy & Seth Rollins vs. Dominik & Rey Mysterio match.
Worst – Universal Championship No Holds Barred Triple Threat match.
Show Notes – Opening US title match was pretty good and had an amazing chokeslam spot by Lashley. Sheamus vs. Big E was decent despite its plodding pace. Corbin vs. Riddle was decent despite dragging a bit much. The double submission spot was the best part of a good Women’s Tag title match. Lee vs. Orton was pretty good. Murphy & Rollins vs. Mysterio Family was very good. Universal title match was somewhat dull with weak shenanigans. It was a bit funny how very quickly WWE gave Reigns the Universal belt now that he’s back. Payback was a mostly enjoyable show overall.

WWE RAW (August 31)
* Keith Lee vs. Dolph Ziggler – 3.0
* Lana vs. Mickie James – 1.5
* Randy Orton vs. Kevin Owens – 1.0 (Squash)
* Shelton Benjamin, MVP, & Bobby Lashley vs. Cedric Alexander & The Viking Raiders – 3.0
* #1 Contender for Women’s Tag Team Championship – The IIconics vs. Ruby Riott & Liv Morgan – 2.0
* Seth Rollins vs. Dominik – 3.0
* Tornado Tag Team match – Street Profits vs. Angel Garza & Andrade – 2.0
* #1 contender for WWE Championship Triple Threat – Randy Orton vs. Keith Lee vs. Seth Rollins – 3.0
Overall – 2.5
Best – #1 contender for WWE Championship Triple Threat match.
Worst – WWE abruptly disbanding one of very few real teams in the Women’s Tag Team division.
Show Notes – Opening Randy Orton and Lee promo segment was decent. Lee vs. Ziggler was pretty good. RAW Women’s title promo segment was dull. Mysterio Family interview segment was fine. MVP Lounge segment was decent. 6-man tag match was pretty good. IIconics disbanding despite an already very weak Women’s tag division was a dumb decision. 24/7 title segment was funny. Tornado Tag match was fine until the lame ending with Retribution. RAW Underground segments were enjoyable. Triple Threat match was pretty good. This week’s RAW was average overall.

NXT (September 1)
* 6-Man Street Fight match – Legado Del Fantasma vs. Breezango & Isiah “Swerve” Scott – 3.0
* Candice LeRae vs. Kacy Catanzaro – 2.0 (Squash)
* Bronson Reed vs. Timothy Thatcher – 2.5
* NXT Championship 60-Minute Iron Man match – Johnny Gargano vs. Adam Cole vs. Finn Balor vs. Tommaso Ciampa – 3.5
Overall – 3.0
Best – Bulk of the NXT Championship Iron Man match.
Worst – The Vince Russo style ending to the NXT title Iron Man match and post-match stuff.
Show Notes – Opening 6-man tag match was pretty good despite the shenanigans at the end. Tegan Nox video promo was okay. LeRae vs. Catanzaro was decent but the curb stomp finish was both cool and brutal looking. Reed vs. Thatcher was a fine hard hitting bout despite the weak finish. 4-way Iron Man match was very good despite the early plodding pace, although it made sense, and the terrible anti-climatic non-finish. This week’s show was good overall but was one of NXT’s weaker shows of the year.

Friday Night SmackDown (September 4)
* Heavy Machinery vs. The Miz & John Morrison – 2.0
* Women’s Tag Team Championship – Sasha Banks & Bayley vs. Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler (c) – 3.5
* #1 Contender for Universal Championship Four-Way match – Matt Riddle vs. King Corbin vs. Sheamus vs. Jey Uso – 3.0
Overall – 3.0
Best – Opening promo by Paul Heyman.
Worst – Heavy Machinery vs. The Miz & John Morrison match.
Show Notes – Opening promo by Paul Heyman was fantastic. Big E & Sheamus backstage ambush segment was okay. Banks pre-match promo was nothing special. Women’s Tag title match was very good. WWE waited too long to pull the trigger but Bayley’s post-match destruction of Banks was the most interesting thing she’s done in months. Sami Zayn, Jeff Hardy, and AJ Styles promo segment was decent. Fatal 4-way match was pretty good despite the weak choice for winner. This week’s episode was pretty good overall and one of SD’s better episodes in recent times.


AEW Dark (September 1)
* Eddie Taurus vs. Shawn Spears – 1.5 (Squash)
* Faboo Andre & Ryzin vs. Santana & Ortiz – 2.0 (Squash)
* Cassandra Golden vs. Allie – 2.0
* Angelico vs. Frankie Kazarian – 2.5
* Ryan Rembrandt & Donnie Primetime vs. Gunn Club – 2.0
* Dani Jordyn vs. Abadon – 1.5 (Squash)
* Tony Donati vs. Ricky Starks – 1.5 (Squash)
* Jon Cruz & David Ali vs. Jurassic Express – 2.0 (Squash)
* Red Velvet vs. Anna Jay – 2.0
* Shawn Dean vs. Kip Sabian – 2.5
* The Initiative vs. Private Party – 2.5
Overall – 2.0
Best – Excalibur’s return to AEW commentary booth
Worst – AEW Dark’s recent trend towards match card and show time bloating.
Show Notes – Santana & Ortiz’s post-match promo was okay. Brandi Rhodes interview segment was also okay. Donnie Primetime looks like a bootleg version of Joey Janela. Dean vs. Sabian & Initiative vs. Private Party matches were decent. The Initiative breaking up as a team was interesting. This week’s lengthy episode had a few enjoyable matches but was skippable overall.

AEW Dynamite (September 2)
* Santana & Ortiz vs. Best Friends – 3.0
* Winner Faces Each Other at AEW All Out match – SCU & Private Party vs. Jurassic Express & Young Bucks – 3.5
* Joey Janela vs. Chris Jericho – 1.5 (Squash)
* Thunder Rosa vs. Serena Deeb – 3.0
* Mark Sterling vs. Jon Moxley – 2.0 (Squash)
Overall – 3.5
Best – The massive brawl during the Casino Battle Royale promos segment.
Worst – Mark Sterling vs. Jon Moxley match being the weakest main event segment for an AEW go-home show.
Show Notes – Opening Santana & Ortiz vs. Best Friends match was pretty good. 8-Man tag match was very good. Kenny Omega, FTR, & Hangman Adam Page promo segment was amazing. TNT censors botching the timing for swear bleeps was hilarious. The massive Battle Royale brawl segment was wonderful. Dark Order vs. Nightmare Family vignette was great. Rosa vs. Deeb was pretty good. Big Swole & Britt Baker segment was okay. The Moxley match and post-match MJF attack were weak to close out a go-home show. This week’s All Out go-home episode was very enjoyable overall.

AEW Dark (September 4)
* Faboo Andre & D3 vs. The Butcher & The Blade – 2.0 (Squash)
* Red Velvet vs. Allie – 1.5
* Zack Clayton vs. Colt Cabana – 2.0
* Ryzin & Angel Perez vs. Lucha Bros – 2.5 (Squash)
* KiLynn King vs. Ivelisse – 2.0
* Shawn Dean & Brandon Bullock vs. Dark Order (Alex Reynolds & John Silver) – 2.0 (Squash)
* Luther vs. Darby Allin – 2.5
* Dark Order (“5” & “10”) vs. Natural Nightmares – 2.5
Overall – 2.5
Best – The shorter length time than Tuesday’s episode and storyline builds throughout the show.
Worst – Red Velvet vs. Allie match.
Show Notes – Dark Order constantly trying to help Cabana during his match was interesting even if the match itself was a bit boring. Peter Avalon interview segment was decent. Diamante being unaware that her Women’s Cup medal was hanging backwards during Ivelisse’s entrance was a bit funny. Friday’s episode of Dark was average overall but was the better of the two Dark episodes this week.

AEW All Out (September 5)
* Buy-In Pre-Show: Serpentico vs. Joey Janela – 2.5
* Buy-In Pre-Show: Dark Order (Alex Reynolds & John Silver) vs. Private Party – 3.0
* Tooth and Nail match – Big Swole vs. Britt Baker – 2.5
* Jurassic Express vs. Young Bucks – 4.0
* 21-Man Casino Battle Royale – 3.0
* Broken Rules Match – Matt Hardy vs. Sammy Guevara – 0.5
* AEW Women’s World Championship – Thunder Rosa vs. Hikaru Shida (c) – 3.5
* Dark Order (Stu Grayson, Evil Uno, Colt Cabana, & Brodie Lee) vs. Natural Nightmares, Scorpio Sky, & Matt Cardona – 3.0
* AEW World Tag Team Championship – FTR vs. Hangman Adam Page & Kenny Omega (c) – 4.0
* Mimosa Mayhem match – Orange Cassidy vs. Chris Jericho – 3.0
* AEW World Championship – MJF vs. Jon Moxley (c) – 3.5
Overall – 3.5
Best – AEW World Tag Team Championship match.
Worst – AEW’s abysmal handling of the Broken Rules match following Hardy’s injury moment.
Show Notes – Tooth & Nail match was decent despite being weak on the cinematic style. Jurassic Express vs. Young Bucks was great. Archer winning the Casino Battle Royale was a great choice. The Broken Rules match was a big dud due to Hardy’s scary injury and AEW’s poor handling afterwards. AEW Women’s title match was very good. 8-man tag match was pretty good despite being a bit long. AEW Tag title match was amazing. Mimosa Mayhem match was pretty good. AEW World title match and its finish were very good. All Out 2020 was very enjoyable although wouldn’t put it in the upper tier of AEW PPVs.


NJPW Strong – Fighting Spirt Unleashed Night One (September 4)
* Alex Zayne & Fred Rosser vs. The DKC & Clark Connors – 2.5
* Misterioso vs. Karl Fredericks – 2.5
* Hikuleo vs. Brody King – 3.0
* Flip Gordon vs. Jay White – 2.5
Overall – 2.5
Best – Hikuleo vs. Brody King match.
Worst – Alex Zayne & Fred Rosser vs. The DKC & Clark Connors match.
Show Notes – Opening tag match was decent and Rosser was fine in his NJPW debut. Misterioso vs. Fredericks was also decent. Hikuleo vs. King was a pretty good hoss style bout. Gordon vs. White was decent. This week’s episode was enjoyable overall.

Week awards:

  • Best match of the week – AEW World Tag Team Championship – FTR vs. Hangman Adam Page & Kenny Omega (c) (AEW All Out 2020)
  • Worst match of the week – Broken Rules Match – Matt Hardy vs. Sammy Guevara (AEW All Out 2020)
  • Best show of the week – AEW All Out 2020
  • Worst show of the week – AEW Dark (September 1st episode)