Dean Ambrose vs Seth Rollins: Rewinding back their feud
Four years ago, Seth Rollins ‘single-handedly’ destroyed The Shield.
The Chaos that ensued would make it one of the most personal and chaotic rivalries of 2014. ‘The Architect’ of The Shield against ‘The Eccentric Hound of Justice’. Seth Rollins against Dean Ambrose.
Rollins and Ambrose clashed for the first time in the Money In The Bank ladder match, and it was absolutely fantastic to witness. The match was spectacularly brutal, with Rollins, in particular, taking some ridiculous bumps. However, the already intense rivalry jumped up another gear when Kane took out Ambrose, as he was about to win, and helped Rollins retrieve the briefcase.
Briefcase in hand, Rollins’ path to becoming the WWE World Heavyweight Champion was all but certain, but that didn’t stop The Lunatic Fringe. The ensuing weeks saw Ambrose thwart any of Rollins’ attempts at cashing in his MITB contract, and would attack him at every opportunity he had.
The rivalry continued to intensify and a match between Rollins and Ambrose headlined Battleground. However, Ambrose attacked Rollins before their match and was ‘ejected’ from the arena, meaning no match took place.
This meant we had to wait a whole month before we got to see the first singles match between Ambrose and Rollins, and they didn’t disappoint. Their Lumberjack match at SummerSlam was spectacular, and although the lumberjack gimmick is shoddy, Ambrose and Rollins made it work.
Bodies were flying everywhere, they were fighting in the crowd. However, once order was restored, Rollins hit Ambrose with his MITB briefcase and picked up a cheap pinfall victory.
One of the most brutal and iconic moments of this rivalry came the following night when Rollins Curb Stomped Ambrose through a pile of cinderblocks. It looked as if this rivalry will be put on hold after this, as Ambrose was off the television and Rollins was facing Roman Reigns at Night of Champions. However, an unsuspected injury to Reigns forced the match to be called off.
Instead, Rollins offered an open challenge to anyone on the roster, and after a one-month hiatus, Ambrose hopped out of a taxi cab backstage and proceeded to beat down on Rollins. Ultimately, Ambrose was escorted out of the arena, which allowed Rollins to attempt to cash in his MITB contract on Brock Lesnar.
After a brief spell with Randy Orton and John Cena, the rivalry was back on, and was building to a match in the most unforgiving structure in the WWE - Hell in a Cell. In the weeks leading up to Hell in a Cell, Ambrose came into his own. He stole the MITB briefcase, gave away free merchandise, ditched John Cena in a tag match to go to Coney Island, and even destroyed a manikin of Seth Rollins.
Hell in a Cell is made for rivalries such as this, and it was a fitting end to a brutal feud. The match started with both men on top of the cell and even saw both Ambrose and Rollins taking bumps off the cell wall through the ringside tables.
Ambrose used anything he could get his hands on to inflict as much pain as possible on Rollins. And just as it looked like he will finally be able to put away Rollins the lights went out and Bray Wyatt attacked Ambrose, allowing Rollins to score a tainted pinfall.
As the years go on, it seems as though the modern-day pro-wrestling fans are grounded by one favoured outcome for every scenario they witness on TV. When that expectation isn’t met in its entirety, a massive disconnect apparently forms between consumer and product.
The climax to Dean Ambrose vs Seth Rollins seems to have ignited such feelings.
Now don’t get me wrong, I was fine with Ambrose being put into a feud with Wyatt. All I wanted to see was Rollins and Ambrose finish what they started, which is what this rivalry deserved Nevertheless, barring the Bray Wyatt finish, this match was an instant classic and proved that both men are undoubtedly main event talents.
The magnificent story told by both men spanned over six months. It was also the first time that we were able to see the new directions for both performers. In that time we saw Rollins flourish into the company’s top heel, becoming more arrogant and cocky every week. We also saw Ambrose push his lunatic persona to new heights, and to say that it worked fabulously would be an understatement.
During this rivalry, he was undoubtedly the most over babyface on the roster. It was this character development that made this rivalry so interesting to watch. Week by week, month by month, you could see both men growing both in and out of the ring. It was fascinating to watch and was perhaps 2014’s most entertaining feud.
Therefore, it is only fitting that this time both Ambrose and Rollins get the worthy conclusion to their feud that they deserve. And, if the past couple of years has taught me anything, it’s that Dean Ambrose vs Seth Rollins could become one of the WWE’s greatest rivalries. Considering the litany of rivalries that the WWE has been witness to in the past, this is a strong claim to make, but when you have such a strong backstory, how can it not build into an engaging feud?
These are two men who came into WWE with a mission: to become the best. Only one man can take the top spot, though, but who will it be? This will only be found through hard work, tenacity, and overall talent and because of the drive these two men have, it’s easy to see that Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins could become one of WWE’s greatest rivalries of all-time.