A Hell in a Cell match on the annual Hell in a Cell PPV that actually ends a feud? Yes, you read that right! Rather than a Hell in a Cell match shoe-horned into a feud just because a calender date comes up, this Hell in a Cell match feels like the right way to end this feud between ‘Taker and Lesnar! This is a bloody and violent as the HIAC matches of old, evoking memories (of course) of the two wrestlers’ first encounter inside Hell in a Cell. I’m pretty sure they’re the only pair to have two singles bouts inside Hell in a Cell (13 years apart!). Their first Cell collision was a minor classic, and their second collision is almost as good.
After a long absence, blood returns to the confines of the Cell. Both ‘Taker and Lesnar shed blood (Lesnar, in particular, must have cut deep; the wound on the top of his head leaks and leaks until the end of the match). Just like their Summerslam match, this is a straight-up brawl. They pummel each other half to death. Once again, ‘Taker absorbs plenty of punishment, manging to keep up with the younger, fitter and stronger Lesnar. You can feel the hatred burning between them. Let’s face it, that’s what a Hell in a Cell is all about! There’s even a chair shot to the head thrown in for good measure.
It’s even better than their Summerslam clash, thanks to a far better ending (involving the wooden slats underneath the mat being exposed!). It’s a clean victory, signalling the end of the second ‘Taker/Lesnar feud. I’d have to re-watch their 2002 Hell in a Cell clash (I have watched it several times), but as of right now I prefer this one to their first one! One of the best Hell in a Cell matches of the Hell in a Cell PPV/Premium Event era that harks back to the pre-PG Hell in a Cell matches, that were full of blood and ultraviolence. An absolute classic.
Hammy’s Rating: ***** (out of 5)
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