WWE Fastlane aired live from Cleveland, OH last night as the WWE has their last PPV stop before WrestleMania. And with that, plenty of opportunities were at stake as Kofi Kingston was denied opportunity once again, AJ Styles laid out Randy Orton, and Ronda Rousey guaranteed Becky Lynch’s opportunity at the WrestleMania Main Event. Let’s take a look at what stole the show.
Co-Besties No More
The starting contest of the night featured The Usos defending their SmackDown Tag Team Championships against The Best Tag Team In The World, Shane McMahon and the hometown favorite, The Miz. With Miz’s dad at ringside, the match was underway. And more than possibly ever before, The Miz was OVER. The match started with some typical Shane O’Mac offense, throwing hands everywhere on the Usos. As the match continued on, the tag team champs got the upper hand as The Miz had been tagged in. A continuous beat down throughout the match, it seemed as though it may be a short night for the Co-Besties. As the match was winding down, Shane McMahon would save The Miz on a close pinfall, then get to the top rope for a possible Coast 2 Coast on Jimmy Uso. However, with Miz also laid out in the middle of the ring, Jey Uso would climb to the top and threaten to hit Miz with a splash if Shane were to go for his signature. Jey Uso went for the splash, however, and Shane nailed Uso with a Coast 2 Coast but in mid-air, leaving them both to crash to the floor. At this point, The Miz would capitalize, nailing Jimmy Uso with a Skull Crushing Finale. As Miz would go for the pin, the referee would have his attention on Shane McMahon, telling him to get out of the ring. By this time, the Co-Besties would have been champions. However, it was for not as the referee would finally realize it, but not in enough time. From here, Miz would go for a frog splash from the top, which would fail miserably, allowing the Uso’s to pick up a victory on a quick roll up, ending the hopes of the Co-Besties. This would result in a moment where Shane and Miz would hug on the outside, going over to Miz’s dad and a moment where he and Miz would hug. As Miz went to talk away, Shane would nail Miz, resulting in a shocking turn of events. Shane would continue the beat down on Miz, throwing punches and elbows continuously, even locking him in a triangle which would choke him out. Shane would even lay his hands on Miz’s dad, pushing him back into his chair before walking out to a sea of boos by the Cleveland faithful. It will be very interesting to see where this change in Shane’s character will go, as WrestleMania nears.
Samoa Joe Remains US Champion
Last night, the Kickoff show was scheduled to include a bout between Rey Mysterio and Andrade, as they were going to continue their ongoing, phenomenal in-ring rivalry. However, on the Kickoff, Carmella and Zelina Vega were fighting backstage. Samoa Joe would then come out to both, letting them know he has no problem defending his title on the show tonight. This would lead to a rematch from SmackDown LIVE, featuring Mysterio, Andrade, and now R-Truth, all for the hope of capturing the United States Championship. And just like Tuesday, this match was fast-paced and certainly fun to watch. The chemistry that Mysterio and Andrade have is absolutely a delight to watch, as these two hit each other with a bundle of moves. However, most of this match was controlled by the champion, Samoa Joe. At one point, Joe took out all three of his opponents with his signature suicide dive. Joe would continue to hit multiple offensive maneuvers throughout the match that brought near fall after near fall. As the match got to its conclusion, R-Truth would hit a signature number of his moves, including his scissors kick for another near fall in this match. Vega and Carmella would soon get involved, as Vega would miss Truth would a hopeful hurricarrana like Tuesday, falling to the floor. Carmella would take her down and they would get physical. This would lead to Truth and Andrade removing them, with Joe in the ring, planting Mysterio with a Uranage, trying to steal the victory. Right before the count of three, Truth was able to break up the count. As the match continued, Truth would be thrown into the ring post, eliminating him from the contest. Andrade would be as well, with the match coming down to Rey and the champion Joe. Mysterio would get Joe lined up for the 619, and nailing Joe in the process. Rey would prop himself up for the splash to grab the pin, but to no avail, Joe would move out of the way, bringing Rey for the Coquina Clutch, resulting in him passing out and Samoa Joe remaining supreme. And with these three seemingly behind him, it makes you wonder who could be Joe’s match for WrestleMania.
The Planet’s Champion Triumphs
Daniel Bryan has been the best thing going in the WWE. He continues to fight for a cause, while everyone else falls victim in order for Daniel Bryan to right the wrongs of the world. And despite his opponents changing on the weekly, Bryan has continued to be a dominant champion when it comes to defending his WWE Championship. Last night was no different when Bryan was prepared to face challenger Kevin Owens. However, earlier in the night when Kofi Kingston and The New Day demanded wrongs be right, Vince McMahon announced that the WWE Championship match would be a Triple Threat. As we learned, it would not be Kofi, as he was instead put into a handicap match against The Bar. So instead, Mustafa Ali would get his rightful opportunity that he lost due to injury, joining the match and only making it better. And better it was, as Owens, Ali and Bryan put on a show. Bryan would start the match off telling both Ali and Owens they were not deserving of this match, and that he was for a better cause than everyone. This would result in both taking Daniel out. As the match continued, there was a spot where Mustafa Ali was on the top rope. Bryan would reverse Ali, connecting with a dropkick sending Ali from the top rope to the barricade in a big crash and burn. Of course, Ali would get back into the match, hitting Daniel Bryan at one point with a 450 splash on the apron. But eventually, Rowan would get involved to help Daniel Bryan. Ali and Owens would team up to take out Rowan, as Owens would hit a plancha to the outside, planting Rowan and giving him the upper hand. Bryan would take Owens out with a knee, however. As the match was coming to the close, Daniel and Ali would be in the ring. Ali was seemingly just a move away from capturing the WWE Championship. As Ali went for a springboard crossbody, Bryan would nail Ali in the air with a Flying Knee in a crazy sequence, as Daniel Bryan would win the match on this one. The action was insane in this one, and if there was a match to go back and watch from Fastlane 2019, it would be this exact match. Daniel Bryan will be going into WrestleMania as the WWE Champion.
Rousey Guarantees Her Shot at Becky Lynch
So much of the build-up since the Royal Rumble has been about the expected main event of WrestleMania between Ronda Rousey, Becky Lynch, and Charlotte Flair. And on Raw this past Monday, the final twist of the storyline seemingly happened as Becky Lynch would be reinstated to fight Charlotte Flair at Fastlane in hopes of getting her rightful opportunity at Ronda Rousey and the Raw Women’s Championship at WrestleMania. And with that opportunity being granted, Rousey had enough with the system and the fans. She went after Becky Lynch specifically, beating her down on that night for all they had been going through. It remained clear that this true feud was between both Lynch and Rousey. So fast forward to last night at Fastlane, Charlotte and Becky were about to square off again for Lynch’s WrestleMania opportunity. As Becky would make her way to the ring, you could see her arm all taped up from the assault by Ronda Rousey on Raw, as well as her limp continued with her using her crutch to get to the ring. For most of the match, Charlotte would toy with Lynch, but the fight of “The Man” would never appear to be lost. Becky would continue to fight, but not be able to do much besides punch at some points. Finally, she would be able to slip Charlotte into the Dis-Arm-Her, and it looked like she would join the fold at WrestleMania after all. Alas, Charlotte would reverse this into the Figure 8 on Lynch’s injured knee, and it all but looked as though Lynch’s dreams would be crushed. No fear, however, as Ronda came rushing down to the ring and immediately nailed Lynch in the gut, signalling for Becky to win by DQ, guaranteeing that she would finally get a piece of Lynch in a sanctioned atmosphere. It has been clear all along that Rousey wanted her in this match, even it is to simply beat the life out of the woman who has been a thorn in her side for far too long. To all the fans that may have been confused, Rousey has made it her mission to end the aura of “The Man” once and for all, and she will do anything in her power to make that happen. She even followed up on Instagram today, stating “I wasn’t going to let you throw away your match against Charlotte to stay face, blame your knee ‘injury’, and evade my wrath at WrestleMania.” Ronda is all business now, simply because she is “The Baddest Woman on the Planet, she is Ronda Rousey.
Pay-Per-View MVP: The Shield
As the Fastlane went on, it became clearer and clearer that the main event would be The Shield’s One Last Ride. As Dean Ambrose nears his departure, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns would team with their Shield brother for possibly the last time. They would face Baron Corbin, Bobby Lashley, and Drew McIntyre, who stated that they would be the new leads of the WWE with The Shield gone. The crowd went nuts as The Shield made their signature entrance for possibly the last time ever. And not only was this a big match for The Shield, but this would be Roman Reigns’ first match back since his battle with leukemia. And to say the least, The Big Dog looked at his best in his first match back. When he was finally tagged into the match, he dominated. The crowd and his brothers were on their feet to see Reigns rule once again. For a bit in this match, the Corbin led team dominated both Rollins and Dean. As Dean continued to try and fight back, the tandem would continue to dominate him. Thankfully for Dean, he would be able to find an opening, where he would finally tag in Reigns who would come in blazing. Reigns and Corbin would go back and forth, exchanging blows. Corbin would hit Reigns out of nowhere with the End of Days at one point, leaving the crowd silent until Ambrose and Rollins were just able to make the save. Rollins and Ambrose would head into the crowd with Lashley and McIntyre, as the action would leak all the way to the Kickoff Panel area. Ambrose would get on the panel desk, jumping at Lashley and McIntyre but getting caught in the process. Rollins, from the top of the concourse, would splash down taking out all three men, leaving Corbin and Reigns in the ring. The match would continue on inside the ring, as the four from the crowd would finally get back to outside the ring. And in vintage Shield fashion, they would become too much for the three, attacking them in the dog like mentality that they made famous. Rollins would nail Lashley with a Curb Stomp on the outside onto the announce table, with Reigns hitting McIntyre with a Spear. The three would take out McIntyre, putting him through the announce table with a Triple Powerbomb, leaving The Shield vs just Baron Corbin. Rollins would hit a superkick, Reigns a superman punch, and Ambrose with Dirty Deeds. They would lift up Corbin for the Triple Powerbomb, leaving him laying and winning the match. And for one last time, The Shield would hit their fist bump in the middle of the ring as Fastlane would come to and end. For all The Shield fans out there, it was a sight to see as this truly could be the last time, at least for a while.
Fastlane was a great show overall, despite no titles changing hands. With continuous action, a surprising turn, and a last time reunion between one of those most storied groups in WWE history, it was a show worth watching. And with WrestleMania just four weeks away, Raw tomorrow should reveal what we may see at the biggest event of the year. Make sure to tune in tomorrow for the Raw Rundown!