2015 Slammy Awards run-down
Monday Night Raw, live from Minneapolis, Minnesota served as the venue for the latest edition of WWE’s award show, The Slammys.
The Slammy Awards is a tradition begun in 1986 & 1987. The concept was revived in 1994, then again in 1996 & 1997. But it didn’t become an annual fixture until 2008.
Who were the big winners this year? What were the high lights? And in what ways did the show fall flat?
JOBBER RUN-DOWN of the 2015 SLAMMY AWARDS
Best Tag Team of the Year: The Usos
Best John Cena US Open Challenge: vs. Cesaro (RAW, July 6th)
Hashtag of the Year: #SuplexCity
Celebrity Moment of the Year: Stephen Amell vs Stardust & King Barrett (SummerSlam 2015)
“Tell me you didn’t just say that” Moment of the Year: Brock Lesnar coins “Suplex City B*tch” at WrestleMania 31
Rivalry of the Year: Brock Lesnar vs The Undertaker
Best Original WWE Network Show: Stone Cold Podcast
Double-cross of the Year: Damian Mizdow, WrestleMania 31
Extreme Moment of the Year: Roman Reigns attacks League of Nations & Triple H (TLC)
Breakout Star of the Year: Neville
LOL! Moment of the Year: R-Truth thinks he is in Money in the Bank match, cuts promo on RAW
The “OMG!” Shocking Moment of the Year: Kalisto executes Solida del Sol from ladder (TLC)
Superstar of the Year: Seth Rollins
“The Hero in all of us” Award: John Cena
Surprise Return of the Year: Sting
Diva of the Year: Nikki Bella
“This is awesome!” Moment of the Year: Rock & Rhonda Rousey vs Triple H & Stephanie (WrestleMania 31)
Match of the Year: Brock Lesnar vs Undertaker (Hell in a Cell)
High Lights of the Night:
Kevin Owens & Dolph Ziggler
Neville winning the rookie award for Breakout Star of the Year may have come as a surprise to many, but those fans got some semblance of satisfaction as Kevin Owens stole the spotlight.
After declaring vehemently that he deserved the award instead, Owens and a tuxedo-clad Dolph Ziggler tore at one another and had to be separated by a pod of referees. The brawl led to an in-ring match later on in the show.
The match became the best of the night. Owens pinned Ziggler clean, making him appear very strong as he no-doubt will continue to pursue Dean Ambrose for the Intercontinental Title.
R-Truth & The Diva of the Year
Santino Marella awarded Truth the LOL! Moment of the Year, and the rapping superstar followed up his win by providing another golden moment.
Aping the Steve Harvey screw-up at the Miss Universe Awards, Truth announced Paige the winner of Diva of the Year before apologizing, saying he had made a mistake. He then presented the rightful winner, Nikki Bella.
While many thought the award rightfully belonged to Sasha Banks, one has to remember that all of her great moments from 2015 occurred in the ranks of NXT, not WWE proper. Nikki, having been voted #1 on PWI’s Top 50 Women of 2015, and breaking the record for longest-reigning Diva’s Champion, rightfully deserved her award.
Bella graciously accepted the award on behalf of women in WWE, from the member of the production team, the corporate team, the wrestlers in NXT and the main roster, as well as women and girls watching in the audience. It was a moment of genuine sincerity.
The presentation of the Superstar of the Year Award came conspicuously early, barely half-way through the show, and lessened the impact and importance of the honour. Also, Stephanie McMahon may have been a poor choice for presenter, since the boos which drowned out her speech tainted the auspiciousness of the moment.
Nonetheless, the first television appearance of Seth Rollins since his injury which took him out of action was the stand-out moment of the night.
Rollins reacted to the win in typical heel arrogance at first. But the former WWE World Heavyweight Champion displayed real emotion when recalling how “one wrong landing, and it disappeared just like that.”
The speech ended with Rollins re-iterating the slogan he has been coining and trending through social media, “Redesign, Rebuild, Reclaim”, as he promised his return to glory in 2016.
Weak Points of the Night:
The crowd in Minneapolis was hot on Monday night. With good reason. The Slammy Awards presents a stage where surprise appearances are likely to occur. Hall of Famers, past stars, returning characters, running gimmicks – all are the flavour of the night.
This year, the biggest surprise fans received was Mick Foley playing Santa Claus (uncredited, for some reason), Bo Dallas playing Santa Claus, and Santino Marella.
While Ric Flair presenting the night’s final award might have normally been a treat, his frequent appearances at Charlotte’s side detracted from his impact.
The disappointment in the crowd was distinctly audible as presenters repeatedly accepted awards on behalf of superstars unable to be there in person.
The Rock and Rhonda Rousey, John Cena, The Undertaker and Sting all were announced winners, and every member of the crowd who rose to their feet in excitement were almost immediately let down by the absence of appropriate theme music.
The biggest bummer of the night came with the final award for Match of the Year. Ric Flair declared the winner to be Undertaker vs Brock Lesnar, and the Beast’s music blared. Not a fan was sitting down. Minnesota is Lesnar territory. And not a fan was happy as the music subsided without an appearance from the former WWE/UFC/NCAA champ.
The consolation prize of a great acceptance speech/promo from Paul Heyman would have to be good enough for the Minneapolis crowd.
With so many no-shows, it seems puzzling why WWE would pass up the opportunity to use more available roster members as part of the show.
New Day made a stink about the Usos winning Tag Team of the Year, but audiences watching at home didn’t see this award presented. These two could have had a more substantial interaction. The Usos could have taken a moment to celebrate their 2nd consecutive Slammy win. Instead, Sting gets an award and doesn’t show.
Roman Reigns, the new WWE World Heavyweight Champion, went the entire program without competing in a match or winning an award. Granted, he opened the show along with Stephanie McMahon, but the segment seemed to serve no purpose whatsoever except push the idea that the Authority is angry at Reigns.
At the very least, McMahon could have incorporated into her opening promo the fact that Roman Reigns won the Slammy for Most Extreme Moment of the Year by battering her husband. This would allow him some reason to appear, and also allow him to leave with one more piece of gold than he entered with.
Much like the Emmys and the Oscars, the Slammys are not fixed. The categories are continually changing year to year. Some categories, such as Match of the Year and Superstar of the Year are staples. Others, such as Beard of the Year and Kiss of the Year come and go depending on what has been prevalent on television and pay-per-views.
This year saw three categories which seemed similar enough to be lumped together: Extreme Moment of the Year, OMG! Moment of the Year, and “This is awesome!” Moment of the Year.
What exactly is the difference between them. No explanation is given, and from the nominees there can be no clear distinction.
Regardless whether you thought it was “extreme”, whether it made you say “Oh my god!” or “This is awesome!”, another year of the Slammy Awards is in the record books.