Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D and occasional guests write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

2014 Ongoing Match of the Year List

56. Bray Wyatt v. Dean Ambrose WWE Smackdown 6/13

PAS: Tremendous short match between two of the best guys in the world. Both wrestlers are super expressive and much about what made this match so good was the facial selling and subtle movements. Wyatt takes over by catching a pescada and smashing Ambrose shoulder first into the ring apron. The rest of the match Ambrose is constantly trying to work his shoulder back into shape, stretching it out, wiggling his fingers, doing everything he can to keep fighting. Meanwhile Wyatt smells the disadvantage and is on Ambrose like a hyena on a wounded gazelle. Ambrose never got full advantage, but was able to catch Wyatt with some big moves and big nearfalls, until his temper got the best of him.  Everyone keeps talking about Ambrose as a natural heel, but he really has perfected the role of tough crazy babyface brawler, like AJPW Terry Funk or Portland babyface Roddy Piper or 90's Stone Cold. The nutjob in the bar who will buy the whole house a round and help the bartender paint his apartment, but will also break a pool cue upside a douchebag frat boy's head because he didn't like his fancy sunglasses.

ER: Jeez it's kind of tough to sum it up better than Phil's last sentence. That has to be in the running for "Best SC line of 2014". Ambrose is a guy who's really great at working within self-imposed limitations. He doesn't quite go to extensive Kikuchi levels of selling long term damage, but watching Ambrose work an injury in a match is always amusing, in the same way it's fun to watch Daniel Plainview work through his leg injury. Dean is very smart about working around the shoulder, really an impressive dedication that he doesn't let this kind of thing back him into corners in a match. There's never any "well I wanted to do THIS spot but I'm working a leg injury…I'M DOING THE SPOT ANYWAY!" He seems like a guy who enjoys the challenge of working injuries into matches and it makes his stuff that much more enjoyable and memorable. Bray Wyatt is a guy who has become kind of popular to dislike lately, which I don't understand as I think he always brings it, has great timing and isn't afraid to get bruised. Here a couple of Dean's dropkicks threaten to fall short so Wyatt runs headlong into them and bumps huge for them. He seems like a guy who has no problem doing a guy a solid in the ring. The Sister Abigail really took what could have been a silly finisher and made it into a cool killshot, not quite a "out of nowhere" Diamondcutter move, but something with this, the Bryan WM match and other matches that he's shown he will always be ready to strike with it, like his character is always ready to strike with his nastiest move at the opponents' most prone time. Really good stuff.


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