Women’s Championship Title Match – Melina (c) vs. Michelle McCool: This was a good match from an in-ring standpoint, but I don’t think enough is being done with Melina and Michelle McCool specifically on Smackdown to generate enough interest in a singles match between the two Divas. It seems like the WWE Women’s Division has become about 6 Diva tags every week, and the focus is lost on the top competitors like McCool, Melina and Gail Kim. The audience just seems to fall flat for Michelle McCool, and they didn’t seem much more interested in Melina either. That said, though, I think these two had a good PPV match, and McCool continues to improve as a wrestler. This is a feud that should continue, and hopefully it will considering McCool got what I thought to be a surprising win. 5.5 Stars.
World Heavyweight Championship Match – Jeff Hardy vs. CM Punk (c): This was a great title match. I know people are going to bitch and moan about the finish, but in my opinion it was smart, creative, and the perfect ending to a match being wrestled under the confines of the current story line between Hardy and Punk. CM Punk is doing a great job of selling his "tweener" character, and each week he teases us, in small amounts, with a full heel turn. Last night was a perfect way for him to heel out of wrestling Hardy after the false finish, but have a built in excuse with his eye appearing to be "injured." This was not an "out of nowhere" steel chair shot to the face to get a blatant DQ on the part of Punk, this was a tactical way of cheaply retaining the title with an alibi that remains intact. The question now becomes, "do we believe CM Punk’s excuse?" He’s teetering on the line between face and heel right now so we can’t fully say one way or the other, and that’s what makes the end of last night’s match so creative in my opinion. As for the match itself, it featured some great wrestling, as I figured it would, and should hopefully imply that we’ve only seen the beginning of Hardy vs Punk. 8 Stars.
Singles Match – John Cena vs. The Miz: This was exactly the type of match I did NOT want to see these two guys have. I said in my Bash preview that it would be a shame to see WWE book these two in a glorified squash match, and that’s exactly what happened. What did having Cena crush The Miz accomplish? Did it make a star out of The Miz? Did it indicate, in anyway, that The Miz is a top player on Raw? Did it make Cena look better at all? The answer to all these questions is "no." This match accomplished nothing more than burying a heel that has a lot of potential and delivering a boring, apathetic, weak wrestling match. 3 Stars.
3 Stages of Hell Match for The WWE Title – Randy Orton (c) vs. Triple H: This was a very good match, but the main problem I had with it was that the Last Man Standing Match which took place just 6 days before it came back to bite the PPV bout in its ass. I thought WWE would up the anti in the 3 Stages Match considering it was the match of the two these guys had in a week that we actually had to pay to see, but in the end, they did not. Last night’s match was no better than the Last Man Standing Match Orton and HHH had on Raw, so for me there was nothing unique about the 3 Stages of Hell stipulation. The first two falls were mediocre and happened too quickly, and the Stretcher Match fall of the bout did not pack enough of a punch to elevate the match as a whole above the Raw match Orton and Trips had in the same week. Granted, the idea of Triple H forfeiting the first fall so that he could decimate Orton in the second and force a third was smart and innovative, but in the end there was enough of the first two falls to really feel much impact. If both guys had not wrestled each other this past Monday night on Raw, then I would probably have enjoyed 3 Stages of Hell much more, but the fact that they left it all in the ring on free TV and didn’t top that when my wallet came into play left me a bit disappointed. 7 Stars.
This was an enjoyable PPV in total, and for a show that came just 3 weeks after an "Extreme Rules" PPV and was for the most part overshadowed by Vince and Donald Trump’s actions on Raw, it delivered more than I expected it to. Out of a possible 9 Stars, I give WWE’s "The Bash" 2009 PPV 6.5 Stars.
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