Leave it to “Mr. Headlock” himself to have the first Matt Riddle match that ever felt like a complete slog to get through.
First off, this match went twenty minutes for absolutely no reason whatsoever. That is always frustrating, but it’s particularly annoying when it’s Matt fucking Riddle. He is the man that single-handedly proved that you can have fantastic matches time and time again without going longer than 12.
Secondly, this match was just….so….damn….sluggish. Once again, Riddle has proven time and time again that it’s so much easier to produce good wrestling when you don’t work slowly for no reason. It’s a mystery why anyone would work otherwise with him.
Finally, Haskins just is not very interesting on top. He doesn’t work with urgency. He doesn’t tell compelling stories. For someone who used to be so much fun and exciting to watch in the ring, he’s devolved in recent years into a “more mature” performer who has “slowed it down” for reasons that defy reason or logic. The talent clearly still has to be inside of him, but it’s been hidden for too long. (**)