In the spirit of the season and the location, one could sum up last night’s Hell in a Cell event by positing that perhaps the event was haunted by the ghost of WCW’s booking.
The event, an overall decent affair in Atlanta, was turned into a confusing spectacle at the conclusion. Rookie referee and Garrett Bischoff lookalike Brad Maddox channeled his inner Nick Patrick and screwed Ryback out of his first WWE Championship reign by delivering a low blow to the Hungriest Man in Sports Entertainment and allowing CM Punk to pick up the win.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, your Hell in a Cell main event concluded with a referee heel turn.
In spite of its ridiculousness, this ending seemed to be the only way to get out of this match without a Brock Lesnar run-in or some other form of outside interference. CM Punk had to retain last night, period. Ryback is not ready to make a run with the belt, and CM Punk still has much he can accomplish as a heel champ. Combine this with the fact that Punk has made Ryback look great lately and that an extension of this feud could only mean more build for Ryback, and you understand last night’s ending a bit more clearly.
But boy, did it seem like a bit of a letdown.
In other news from the event, Big Show picked up a clean win over Sheamus to become the new World Heavyweight Champion. Some might complain, but having a dominant heel who actually, you know, wins clean is great for the business. While Punk finds cheap ways to keep the gold, having Big Show become the dominant beast he should have been booked as all along will bring a lot of attention to the World Heavyweight Title and the action which will surround it. The only question is, where will Dolph Ziggler fit in this new title scene? We may have to wait a few more months to see Ziggler cash in his Money in the Bank contract, as one would doubt he will be cashing it on the heel Big Show anytime in the near future.
-Team Hell No retained their titles over the Rhodes Scholars via disqualification
-Kofi retained his recently-won Intercontinental belt over Miz
-Antonio Cesaro retained his US Championship over Justin Gabriel
-Eve kept her Divas title, beating both Kaitlyn and Layla
-Randy Orton put Alberto Del Rio down for a win
-Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara beat the Prime Time Players
As always, tune in to Monday Night Raw tonight at 8/7c for the usual fallout from the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view and the build towards Survivor Series on November 18th.