By Ryan Satin
FOX Sports WWE Analyst
WWE Hell in a Cell ’22 was headlined by Cody Rhodes wrestling for over 20 minutes with a torn pectoral muscle. Yes, really.
Hell in a Cell also featured an excellent Raw Women’s title match, The Judgement Day asserting their dominance in a Mixed tag team affair and Mustafa Ali nearly winning the United States Championship.
Before tackling everything that happened with Cody Rhodes in the main event, here’s a quick recap of the match results:
– Theory defeated Mustafa Ali via pinfall after hitting the ATL to retain the United States Championship
– Cody Rhodes defeated Seth Rollins via pinfall in a Hell in a Cell match
Moment of the night: Cody Rhodes unveils torn pec
During the kickoff show, it was announced that in preparation for the match, Rhodes had completely torn his right pectoral tendon off the bone.
Surprisingly, however, he still planned to compete.
As the show began, many questioned if that would truly happen, yet Cody somehow defied the odds by walking to the ring for his match.
When “The American Nightmare” took off his jacket, though, the bruising across his arm/chest was impossible to miss, and an eerie silence came across the arena.
No one believed he’d actually be able to wrestle like that, yet …
Match of the night: Cody Rhodes vs. Seth Rollins — Hell in a Cell
This was one of the most compelling WWE matches of the last decade.
Seeing someone’s body bruised that badly going in, knowing they are most certainly heading for surgery soon, makes every punch, every slam, every hit with a foreign object permeate through the screen into your body. There’s no suspension of disbelief needed in a scenario like this.
It’s all very real, and very painful.
However, as crazy or dangerous as it may have been, you can’t help but respect Rhodes for risking it all to put on an epic match for the fans who paid to see him perform. It also gave a satisfying conclusion to his return storyline.
Major props go to Rollins as well.
Not a single soul wanted to see him win this match once Cody unveiled that massive bruise, yet he played it to his advantage perfectly by being the most villainous opponent possible.
The polka dots on his gear and Dusty Rhodes weight belt. Targeting the injury without hesitation. Busting out a sledgehammer à la Triple H.
All of it was masterful.
Lingering question: Should the brand split be dropped for now?
As I wrote in my SmackDown roundup on Friday, SmackDown’s roster has been feeling thin lately. With Cody and Randy Orton gone now, too, Raw will be similarly affected.
Combining the rosters to combat this might be the best course of action.
Additional Hell in a Cell highlights:
The Judgement Day had an impressive showing.
This was one of the better Mixed tag matches in recent memory.
Mustafa Ali and Theory have great chemistry together.
Theory was clearly the favorite going in, but Ali did a fantastic job of making fans believe he actually had a chance to win.
Ryan Satin is a WWE analyst for FOX Sports. Satin previously appeared on FS1’s “WWE Backstage” and founded Pro Wrestling Sheet, where he broke countless news stories as editor-in-chief.
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