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10 Things We Learned From WWE Fastlane 2019

Always an educational experience

3. Daniel Bryan, Kevin Owens, And Mustafa Ali Are Miracle Workers

WWE

As the years have ticked by, fans have become more and more stubborn to the things they don’t want to see, especially if something’s being presented in spite of their preferences or tastes. While it’s a mortal lock that this “McMahon screws Kofi” angle is setting up WrestleMania, the genuine fan outrage seems to be unsure of that, and when Ali entered as Kofi’s surrogate for the WWE title triple threat, there seemed to be no turning back for the fans. Once they enter hijack mode, they don’t get talked down easily.

Bryan, Owens, and (especially) Ali went above and beyond to deliver a banger of a match, and eventually, the fans in Quicken Loans Arena were like, “Damn, we may as well try and enjoy this masterpiece we’re being given.” There was a point where WWE may as well have sounded the Royal Rumble buzzer and hit Mysterio’s POD music, because I didn’t think there was any turning back for the crowd. Those three men dragged the crowd back into positive terrain, and it was a sight to see.

2. Thank God Mike Rome Was There To Explain Things

WWE

Full disclosure: I’m no genius. Two weeks ago, I thought my PS4 of three years was irreparably defective because the game picture wasn’t showing up, and I began checking prices for a new one…before it dawned on me that I had simply turned to the wrong source channel on my TV. Yeah, I’m a numpty, as Ross would say. But hey – I got to feel smart during the finish of the Becky Lynch/Charlotte Flair match, that’s for damn sure.

Knowing that Lynch merely had to WIN to qualify for the WrestleMania match, I saw Ronda Rousey beelining toward the ring and knew exactly who she was going to attack. When she hit Becky, the crowd’s boos intensified – partially because “Boo Ronda, she’s not Becky, she called this fake”, which I get, but you just *know* many of them figured Rousey had somehow cost Lynch her WrestleMania opportunity. It was only when ring announcer Mike Rome clarified how this all worked (which wasn’t exactly Calculus equations written in Sanskrit) that people began to cheer. Thank you, Mike Rome, for getting the escalator working again. Otherwise, who knows how long we would’ve been standing there.

1. Predictable Has Its Place, And That’s Cool

WWE

Let’s face it – unless WWE really wanted to backhand us all with yet another moment of Dean Ambrose treachery, The Shield was going over strongly against three of Raw’s top villains. It was Roman Reigns’ comeback moment from a life-threatening illness, and with so many people rooting for him, a feelgood moment was more than welcome. And it was the only ending that would suffice.

When Adam and Ross released their predictions video late last week, they almost uniformly agreed on each pick, a sign that Fastlane was going to be a paint-by-numbers affair. And aside from the Rey/Andrade match that was changed, they nailed them all, so yeah, it was a predictable show as far as expected winners went. But predictable has its place, and Fastlane couldn’t end without The Shield brotherhood standing tall, in light of recent positive news. Disney movies never end with doubt or tragedy, and hey, Disney’s brought in a lot of money. Let’s save those swerves for a day that needs them.

Justin Henry

Written by Justin Henry

In addition to writing lists and commentaries for Cultaholic, Justin is also a features writer and interviewer for Fighting Spirit Magazine, and is co-author of the WWE-related book Titan Screwed: Lost Smiles, Stunners, and Screwjobs.

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