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Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Live Report! (1/2/18)

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All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship: The Usos VS Shelton Benjamin & Chad Gable; Usos wins and retain the SmackDown Tag team Championships.
  • Breezango VS The Bludgeon Brothers; no contest.
  • WWE United States Championship Tournament: Xavier Woods VS Aiden English; Woods wins and advances to face Jinder Mahal in the semifinals.
  • Six Woman Tag: The Welcoming Committee w/ Lana VS The Riott Squad; The Riott Squad wins.
  • AJ Styles VS Sami Zayn w/ Kevin Owen, Daniel Bryan & Shane McMahon ringside; Zayn wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

The Phenomenal One finds himself tangled in Kevin’s & Sami’s #YEPMovement.

SmackDown ended 2017 with a big match between the WWE Champion and the Prizefighter, with the Guardian Angel hanging around ringside. However, it wouldn’t be Sami who cost Styles the match, but SmackDown commissioner Shane McMahon! A distraction at ringside led to Kevin getting a win, will he be getting a world title shot in 2018!?

 

AJ Styles heads to the ring.

The Champ that Runs the Camp wishes everyone a Happy New Year! Welcome to SmackDown, the House that AJ Styles Built. Fans give Styles a standing ovation and chant before he continues. New Year, new beginnings, and new resolutions, like the Men’s Royal Rumble. Styles has resolutions, too. First: take the title all the way to Wrestlemania and keep it through to the end. That seems less likely with others getting involved in his matches, though. So his second resolution is to beat Sami Zayn tonight. Styles questions the fact that a certain someone is allowing Sami Zayn to have Kevin Owens in his corner, same as last week. And with that, Styles allows SmackDown General Manager, Daniel Bryan, to come out. The fans join Bryan in the “YES! YES!” chant as always. But before Bryan can speak, Shane McMahon comes out!

The fans cheer for Shane O’Mac, too, then more for Bryan. Shane then speaks and explains that he had the best intentions last week. He wanted Sami Zayn ejected in last week’s main event. Everyone can agree a match-up should be determined by abilities in ring, not outside distractions. Shane admits to being part of the distraction, he apologizes. Styles accepts, and Shane continues to bring up the accusations of a personal vendetta against Kevin & Sami. Bryan thinks that, for one. Shane may dislike Sami & Kevin, but claims Bryan has a biased in favor of Kevin & Sami. Why else would Bryan allow Sami to hang around at ringside? Better yet, is Bryan changing his YES Movement into the YEP Movement?

Shane finishes by saying Bryan probably won’t keep Kevin form being ringside. In which case, Shane volunteers to be ringside, too! Bryan figures that if Kevin and Shane are going to be present, then why not have Bryan ringside? 2018 starts off with a bang, “YES! YES!”

 

WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship: The Usos VS Shelton Benjamin & Chad Gable!

 

Jimmy & Jey left 2017 with the tag team division #OnLock, but will the New Year bring new champions? The Usos know it’s Gable’s & Benjamin’s New Year’s resolution. But the “soon to be Three Time Tag Team of the Year”, and Five Time Tag Team Champions, vow to keep the Uso Penitentiary open through 2018.

The bell rings, Benjamin starts against Jimmy, but he gives a cheap shot to Jey. Jimmy fights back and fights out of the Benjamin-Gable corner. He climbs up, Benjamin leaps up to throw him off! Gable moonsaults down, Jey breaks the pin.

The teams regroup while we go picture in picture.

Gable brings Jimmy into a neutral corner and wrenches the leg against the ropes. Gable then uses a dragon screw to throw jimmy down, and taunts Jey before yanking on Jimmy’s leg. Cover, TWO, Jimmy rolls away from Gable. Gable tags Benjamin, they keep on the leg. Benjamin brings Jimmy back up to go after the leg in the ropes again but Jimmy fights back. Benjamin gives him stiff shots to keep him down, then runs to ram his knee into Jimmy’s leg. Jimmy writhes in pain, Benjamin puts him in a Half-Crab. Jimmy reaches for Jey and vice-versa, but Benjamin drags Jimmy away and tags Gable. Gable takes the hand off and wrenches Jimmy’s knee again and again. Jimmy endures, and uses his free leg to fight back. Gable tackles Jimmy to deny the tag, then tags Benjamin back in. They double knee, kick and knee strike Jimmy down. Cover, TWO, tag back to Gable. Gable wrenches Jimmy’s knee again, keeping Jimmy grounded on the mat. Jimmy again fights with his free leg, but Gable keeps him anchored as we go back to single picture.

Gable manages to keep Jimmy back, but Jimmy still hits the dragon whip kick! Fans rally, the two crawl, hot tags to Jey and Benjamin! Jey rallies on Benjamin by dumping him out and FLYING! Air Uso takes out Benjamin, Jey returns to throw Gable out and FLY AGAIN! The Usos regroup, they both build speed, but Benjamin trips up Jey and throws him into barriers! Jimmy throws Gable out, but runs into Benjamin’s knee! Gable climbs up while Benjamin lifts Jimmy, DOOMSDAY! Gable & Benjamin are the NEW SmackDown Tag Team Champions!! Did they just shut down the Uso Penitentiary? Wait, a secondary official appears and they sort out which Uso was legal. The instant replay shows us that…

Yes, Jey is legal, but Benjamin-Gable covered Jimmy! The match shouldn’t actually be over. Even fans call for them to “Restart the match!” We’re continuing, after break!

After SmackDown returns…

Benjamin & Gable are still upset they aren’t champions, but the Usos don’t give them time to argue. They blindside them off the apron and then throw them against barriers. Benjamin and Jey are back in the ring, SUPERKICK and uppercuts from Jey. Samoan Drop and then running hip attack corner to corner, but Gable saves Benjamin just in time. Gable hits Jimmy with a rolling kick, Jey hits Gable with an uppercut. Benjamin rolls Jey, TWO, SPINEBUSTER! Benjamin vows to finish it this time, Gable climbs up again, but Jimmy returns to SUPERKICK Gable out of teh sky! Jey fights his way out, SUPERKICK for Benjamin and Jimmy tags in. Double SUPERKICK, tag back to Jey, Uso Splash! The Usos win! They’re the SmackDown Tag Team Champions, the Uso Penitentiary stays standing.

 

Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn are in a good mood.

However, how do they feel having Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan at ringside? Renee is asking if tonight will be any different. Kevin’s had different breakfasts, that’s different. #Yep. They’re in different cities. #YEP. But the main event result won’t be any different, Styles will still lose. #YEP! Shane has the “audacity” to accuse Bryan of favoritism? Bryan is being a good general manager. Fine, let Shane and Bryan be out there, it won’t change the reality. This is the Sami & Kevin Show! Kevin’s Best Friend will prove it when he destroys the House that AJ Styles Built brick by brick. #Yep.

 

Breezango VS The Bludgeon Brothers!

The Fashion Police barely survived their previous encounter with Harper & Rowan, but their “friends” Konnor & Viktor have faith in them. Can Fandango & Tyler Breeze finally put this case to rest?

Harper & Rowan don’t wait for a bell, they blindside the Fashion Police and go corner to corner on each of them. Harper feeds Fandango to Rowan’s body check, the Fashion Police roll out of the ring again. The Ascension hit the ring to make the save again, but it backfires! Konnor gets knocked down, Viktor is alone in the ring. The Bludgeon Brothers give Viktor the double crucifix bomb! No match, no mercy, is there no stopping Harper & Rowan?

 

Xavier Woods is backstage, swinging away.

Big E stops him, they didn’t get him a pinata. The New Day got Woods a New Year gift. Is it the DVD box set of Golden Girls? No. Is it equipment for UpUpDownDown? No. Is it a pancake cut-out of the numbers “2018” with whip cream and a candle? Yes! Wait, he can see through the blindfold…

This is great, but remember: When Woods Becomes US Champion, THE NEW DAY becomes W! W! E! United! States! Champion~! Woods goes to blow out the candle, but Rusev & Aiden English appear. Do they want to know his New Year’s wish? No. He tells them anyway. English wants every day of 2018 to be… Rusev Day~! And that what will happen when English wins to move on in the tournament. Look at the New Day acting like children and blowing out candles to make wishes. Rusev blows out the candle himself!

He stole Woods’ wish! But can Woods still keep the New Day’s US Championship dream alive?

Mojo Rawley speaks on The United States Championship Tournament.

Mojo vows that he’ll defeat Zack Ryder and put him “back in the past where he belongs. Woo woo woo, you know it.”

 

WWE United States Championship Tournament: Xavier Woods VS Aiden English!

The Bulgarian Brute will sing for The Drama King. “Take your calendar and mark the dates, this is your new champion of the Untied States! He’s so tall~, he’ll make Woods pay. For Aiden English brings a victory to the RUSEV DAY~!”

The bell rings, Woods and English circle. They tie up, English gets the headlock, Woods powers out. English runs Woods over, fans want pancakes, Woods jumps up and over to elbow English back. Woods then runs, for a wheelbarrow but English powers out. Woods runs again, roaring elbow knocks English down! Cover, TWO, Rusev coaches English back into the match. Woods throws English out, then slingshots over, but has to roll out. He still hits English with a mule kick, The New Dy keeps Rusev back. Woods goes for the Honor Roll, English sends that into the steel steps! Big E tries to revive Woods with pancakes, but it has no effect. English brings Woods into the ring for a cover, TWO. Jinder Mahal and the Singh Brothers watch backstage as English knees and kicks Woods then rains down rights.

The fans cheers Woods on, but English snapmares Woods and puts on a chinlock. Rusev coaches English to squeeze the life from Woods, but fans are rallying. Woods feeds off the energy and gets to his feet to then arm-drag English off. English runs in, into a SUPERKICK! Both men fall, Rusev trash talks Woods while fans rally. Woods and English stir, stand up, Woods gives body shots and sharp chops. He whips English but English reverses into a mule kick. English runs, Woods gets around, torture rack into a backbreaker!

TWO! Rusev is relieved, but the New Day is fired up. Woods takes aim at English in a corner and runs in, English boots him away. Woods turns things around, roll up but roll-up counter, TWO. English lifts Woods, fireman’s carry powerbomb! TWO! English is shocked, Rusev is furious. Fans continue to rally while English brings Woods over to a corner. English climbs up, has Woods in position, but Woods resists the dangerous move to shovel English up and over for a SUPER Body drop! English writhes on the ground while Woods turns himself around. Woods climbs up to the very top, tight rope walk, elbow drop! Woods wins and advances! There will not be a Year of Rusev Day, will there be a star-spangled Free Bird rule New Day?

 

Backstage interview with The Welcoming Committee.

All four women, from Natalya to Carmella to Lana to Tamina, have declared for the 30 Women Royal Rumble match. Tonight, they team up against The Riott Squad. Natty sent the Riott Squad running like scared little rats, so they’re feeling pretty good about themselves. Natty’s said it once and will say it again: Before the Squad was the Welcoming Committee. Ruby and her friends had their fun, but the party is over. The saying is “Only fools rush in,” and that describes The Riott Squad perfectly. TO wrap this up, the Welcoming Committee will remind the Squad that “there is no substitute for the real thing.” Which faction of the SmackDown Women’s Division will come out ahead on the Road to the Royal Rumble?

 

Six Woman Tag: The Welcoming Committee w/ Lana VS The Riott Squad!

The bell rings, Liv Morgan and Natalya start for their teams. They circle, tie up, Natty gives Liv the headlock takeover but Liv gets the headscissors. Natty pops out, LIv takes a swing and they return the takeover and headscissors. Liv is very confident as she ties up with Natty again. Natty gets an arm wrench and wristlock, Liv rolls and reverses the hold. Liv whips then goes Matrix to duck one lariat, but gets hit by the discus lariat, cover, TWO. Liv scrambles to get away from the Sharpshooter like it was going to kill her. We go picture in picture while the Squad regroups.

Natty grins as she watches the Squad calm Liv down. Liv returns into the ring, but Natty is right on her at the ropes. The ref backs ehr down but she has Liv’s hair, so Liv decks Natty and drags Natty over. Tag ot Ruby, double hair yank throws Natty down. Ruby drags Natty up, Natty carries her to the Welcoming Committee’s corner. Tag to Carmella, the FABULOUS Ms. Money in the Bank gives her a mule kick. Carmella taunts Ruby, dodges her attack and moonwalks back. They speed up, flying headscissors and a dropkick drop Ruby. Carmella whips but Ruby reverses, Carmella elbows Ruby away but has to fight off Sarah. This allows Ruby to hit the standing STO! Tag to Sarah Logan, #KentuckyStrong puts Carmella in a half-straitjacket. Carmella endures while we go back to single picture.

The fans build to a rally for Carmella, she gets to her feet but Sarah yanks her back down. Carmella endures, the Committee and fans rally again. She stands up, jawbreaker to Sarah breaks the hold. Sarah intercepts by going after Natty and tamina, Carmella rolls her up, TWO, tag to Tamina! The Daughter of Superfly rallies on The Squad, SUPERKICK for Ruby! The fans fire up with her, she gives Sarah the Samoan Drop! Sarah is done in position, Lana fires the fans up more while Tamina climbs. Ruby and Liv return, Ruby distracts the ref while Liv shoves Tamina down! Sarah pounces, cartwheel knee drop! The Riott Squad wins!

Ruby grabs a mic to talk.

“I bet everybody here in Orlando believes in magic, right?” Well, magic isn’t real! It’s just like the WWE Universe: phony. Day in and day out, the fans “pretend” their way through their lives. THey pretend to be happy but they’re actually miserable. The WWE Universe needs a dose of reality, so take a look at The Riott Squad. They’re real, their dominance is real, their success is real. That’s why Liv, Sarah and Ruby are all entering the Women’s Royal Rumble! “All those other women”– Well, here’s THE Woman, Charlotte Flair!

The Queen congratulates the Squad on their win and Ruby on her speech. But she must disagree: even Charlotte is a dreamer. And like the WWE Universe, Charlotte believes in the magic of her dreams. You find your passion, and your world will change. Ruby said she believes in “reality”, so here’s Ruby’s dose of reality: “actions have consequences.” And someone is back to teach them that lesson. Orlando’s own Glow, Naomi, comes out! Oh, that’s not all. There’s someone who wants to make the Squad pay for what they did: BECKY LYNCH!

The Lass Kicker has returned from the beating the Squad gave her, now her and her squad take the fight to them! Charlotte boots down Sarah, Naomi springboards to roundhouse Liv, and Becky gives Ruby the Becksploder! Then one for Liv!

The Riott Squad runs away, will there be any running from revenge on the Road to the Royal Rumble?

 

Baron Corbin speaks.

There is no fight better suited to him than the Royal Rumble. The Lone Wolf “can’t wait” to get into the Royal Rumble and throw 29 other men over the top rope. He vows to win and main event Wrestlemania!

 

AJ Styles VS Sami Zayn w/ Kevin Owens!

With SmackDown GM and Commissioner ringside, will there be more “Shane-nanigans” like last week? Or can The Phenomenal One keep from being swept by the Kevin & Sami Show?

The bell rings, Styles goes right at Sami! He puts Sami in a corner and rams in shoulders, then bumps him off the buckle. Fans cheer Styles on as he suplexes Sami, cover, TWO. Kevin tells the ref to keep Styles back, Sami sucker punches Styles and clubs him down. Styles fights back with chops, then runs but into a body drop! Cover, TWO, so Sami keeps on Styles with chops and jabs. They brawl now, back and forth, Sami elbows Styles in the back of the head to bring him down. Kevin wants Sami to stay on him, fans cheer Styles on. Sami runs, Styles goes up and over, dropkick drops Sami! Sami bails out to regroup with his best friend, Styles goes out to fetch him. Shane keeps Kevin back, Bryan keeps the peace.

Things are tense as Styles puts Sami in the ring. Sami kicks Styles on reentry, Fisherman Buster! Cover, TWO, Sami and Kevin can’t believe it. Even so, they’re in control as we go to break.

SmackDown returns, Sami has Styles in a chinlock. Fans rally, Styles pries his way out of the hole by biting fingers. Sami switches to keep the chinlock on, fans duel, “Let’s go Styles!” “Sami Zayn!” Styles gets up, they brawl, Styles unloads the Phenomenal Blitz! He then runs, sliding forearm! Kevin coaches Sami up while both men are down. Sami crawls to a corner, Styles kip-ups! He hits Sami with a big corner clothesline and pumphandle gutbuster, TWO! Styles is surprised, Kevin is adamant. Styles drags Sami up, fireman’s carry but Sami resists. Sami slips out to the apron, Styles walks over, hotshot snaps Styles back. Sami grins while he climbs up top, but Styles revives to trip him up. Now Styles goes to drag Sami off the top, fireman’s carry to Ushigoroshi! Cover, TWO! Styles grits his teeth as he puts Sami in Clash position, but Sami resists. Styles keeps trying, Sami slips out and gets the Blue Thunder Bomb!

TWO! Kevin is shocked enough for him and Sami. Fans continue dueling with their chants, Shane watches with his full attention. Sami takes aim at Styles, runs corner to corner but into a Calf Crusher! Styles wrenches it deep and hard, Kevin tells Sami to endure! Sami reaches, Styles rolls him away from the ropes. Styles keeps pulling on that leg, Sami drags himself back to ropes, and gets the ropebreak! Kevin is relieved, Shane is disappointed. Styles gets up, drags Sami back up on one leg, but Sami fights back. They brawl back and forth with forearms, PELE from Styles! Styles runs in, Sami puts him on the apron but Styles hits him away. The fans fire up as Styles takes aim, springboard but Sami gets under, Styles gets around behind, the referee gets knocked out of the ring! Crucifix pin, Kevin “helps” the referee not get in the ring. The referee finally gets in and counts, TWO! The ref argues with Kevin, as does Shane and Styles. Shane shoves Kevin over! Kevin asks Bryan what’s even going on, the referee ejects Kevin! Bryan says Shane should go with him?!

Styles takes care of Kevin, Sami hits a HELLUVA KICK! Sami wins!! Once again, the best friends get an “assist” from Shane! Styles is pissed. “Is that the way it’s gonna be?” Kevin & Sami can’t win without each other? Styles doesn’t know whose side Bryan is on, but he and Shane need to “stop bickering like children.” Styles is the WWE Champion, he fights to entertain the WWE Universe. He’ll even take a handicap match against Sami & Kevin! Bryan likes that idea! The Royal Rumble will see a WWE Championship match, Styles VS Kevin AND Sami in a Handicap match! The fans cheer “YES! YES!” with Bryan, but is this really okay?

 

My Thoughts:

The first SmackDown of 2018 was a touch better than the first Raw of 2018. The main thing was that it ended better. Styles finds himself as the new proxy in the Sami-Kevin-Bryan-Shane story, and it’s working out pretty well. Styles has history with both Shane and Kevin, so it works that he has frustrations after the main event. Bryan taking his venting and making it an actual match is rather telling, too. Shane may be becoming a tyrant but Bryan is also favoring Kevin & Sami a bit, but again, Bryan can’t be the Heel in the end because fans love him too much to ever boo. Shane will need to up his animosity to make himself the true Heel in the story or it just won’t work.

As for the rest of the show, the SmackDown Tag Team Championship match was great. The ending can be seen as both good and bad. It was a great bit of detailed booking to have Jimmy take the pin when he wasn’t legal, but using instant replay flies in the face of the usual “referee’s decision is final” rule in pro-wrestling. Especially when you consider this was just so the Usos could still win in the end. It can definitely extend the story between Usos & Benjamin-Gable, but it seemed an odd thing to do. I was hoping the United States Championship Tournament would wrap the first round up tonight but oh well. Woods-English was great, and I’m glad Woods went over because that means The New Day can start something with Mahal & The Singh Brothers going into the semifinals. Those six could make for a great 3v3 feud, regardless of who wins the US Championship. I was also personally hoping WWE would wait to bring Becky Lynch back until next week, but fans still loved seeing her return tonight and her running the Riott Squad off was still fun. This will clearly lead to one more Six Woman Tag, Riott Squad VS “Royal Glow Fire”, which can be a good match, and could go either way.

My Score: 8/10


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Mitchell’s NJPW AXS TV Marathon: G1 Climax 26 and 27 Finals!

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In honor of the 28th G1 Climax, AXS gives a double dose of NJPW with the finals from both the 26th & 27th G1 Climax tournaments, both starring Kenny Omega!

 

All images courtesy of AXS TV

Gifs to come courtesy of http://frentique.tumblr.com/

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • G1 Climax 26 Finals: Hirooki Goto VS Kenny Omega; Omega wins.
  • G1 Climax 27 Finals: Tetsuya Naito VS Kenny Omega; Naito wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

NJPW and AXS review what led to this G1 Climax 26 finals!

First, in Block A, the Fierce Warrior of Chaos defeated the likes of Bad Luck Fale, Tama Tonga, Hiroyoshi Tenzan and Tomohiro Ishii, but losing to Hiroshi Tanahashi, Sanada and Kazuchika Okada. It was by only one point that he advanced over The Rainmaker, who had a draw against The Ace, and thereby costing him in the end. Meanwhile, in Block B, it would be The Cleaner, Kenny Omega! Omega was tied with Tetsuya Naito at 12 points each, but because Omega beat Naito in their own encounter, that gave the Bullet Club leader the edge. Goto won the 2008 G1 Climax, and wants to achieve it again. Omega has yet to do the same, but he aims for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship held by Okada. Whose determination will be what carries them through to victory?

 

G1 Climax 26 Finals: Hirooki Goto VS Kenny Omega!

Who will win the right to hold the Tokyo Dome IWGP Heavyweight Championship challenge rights certificate for Wrestle Kingdom?

The official introductions are made, and referee Red Shoes checks that both men have nothing illegal on their person. Fans are already thunderous for both men wtih the bell. Omega embraces it, and even encourages them. He and Goto tie up, and he gets a waistlock. Goto pries his way out with a wristlock, but Omega pulls hair. Omega puts Goto on the ropes but backs off with mocking pats on the shoulder, and even one on the cheek. Goto keeps his cool and circles with Omega again. They tie up again, and Goto gets a waistlock. Omega pries his way out with a wristlock, but Goto rolls and gets the takedown. Goto goes for a foot but Omega turns that to an armbar. Goto rolls to a cover, TWO, but Goto keeps on Omega. Omega slips out of the facelock, and the two back off.

They circle again, then approach. Goto kicks then gets a hammerlock. He shifts to a headlock, but Omega grabs hair again. Omega powers out but Goto runs him over with a shoulder. Goto runs and tricks Omega into jumping up, but Omega still gets Goto with a huricanrana! Goto bails out and Omega starts up the Terminator drums. Omega builds speed but Goto returns to kick him in the bad leg! Fans boo the shrewd strategy but Goto ignores them to kick at the leg more. Omega gets to a corner but Goto sweeps his legs. Goto drags Omega over to then wrench Omega’s foot with a standing toehold. Omega endures as Goto turns it into a Figure Four! Fans rally for Omega as he reaches for ropes. Omega manages the ropebreak, and Goto lets him go. Goto keeps on Omega in the corner, kicking the leg against the ropes.

Fans boo more as Goto tortures Omega. Omega hits back with forearms, but Goto kicks Omega low. Omega goes after the eyes! Then he runs, but into Goto’s clothesline! Goto sends Omega out hard, then follows to stomp Omega out. Goto drives in elbows and follows Omega as he staggers around. He brings Omega up to whip him at the barriers. Omega stops himself, mule kicks Goto back, then uses the railings for the moonsault! Omega wipes Goto out but his legs pay the cost in the landing. The 20 count begins but reaches 10 as Omega scoop slams Goto into the barriers! Omega gets in at 13, but Goto is barely stirring. Omega decides to keep this going, as he powerbombs Goto on the apron! Goto crumples to the floor while Omega takes time to catch his breath and stretch his legs.

Omega goes in the ring at the count of 7, and leaves Goto to the count’s mercy. Goto sits up at 11, drags himself up, and manages to beat it at 18. Omega is right on him, and turns him over for a Rude Awakening neckbreaker, complete with hip swivels. Cover, TWO! Fans are still thunderous as Omega puts Goto in a half camel clutch. Omega pulls back and thrashes Goto around. Goto powers towards ropes but Omega holds on. Omega pulls back, then traps an arm for a half straitjacket addition. Goto still fights with the other arm to get the ropebreak. Omega lets go, to stomp away on Goto. He sits Goto up for a stiff chop, then covers. TWO, but Omega keeps on him with a neck wrench. Goto endures while fans duel. Goto drags himself around, and gets another ropebreak.

Omega lets him go, but goes right back at him for a buckle bump. He chops Goto again, and again. Omega whips Goto corner to corner, then runs in, but misses teh back elbow. Goto fires off forearms, then whips Omega. Goto runs into boots, then Omega adds the Kotaro Krusher leap-frog bulldog! Cover, TWO! Omega grows frustrated, but the fans are still with him. Omega stands and drags Goto up, but Goto fires back. Goto chops and chops, but Omega just eggs him on. Goto chops again, then Omega chops back. They trade chops, then Omega kicks and elbows Goto’s neck. Omega whips but Goto reverses. Omega slips around and runs again, but Goto follows to clobber him with a clothesline!

Both men are down but Goto stands up first. Omega follows, but Goto throws forearms. Goto whips Omega corner to corner for the heel kick! Then a big saido suplex! Omega flounders to his feet but Goto runs back in for a big corner clothesline. Goto throws Omega down and climbs up while fans boo. Goto takes aim, and hits the elbow drop. High stack cover, but Omega uses that for a ropebreak. Goto grabs Omega again, fireman’s carry, but Omega slips out and spits! Omega lifts Got, “You Can’t Escape!” rolling senton and moonsault! Cover, TWO! Omega won’t stop, he grinds his forearm into Goto’s face. Fans don’t really like that, but Omega backs off to bring Goto up. Omega clubs Goto in the back but Goto feeds off it.

Goto feeds off the kick and the forearm and eggs Omega on. Omega gives him more, but it makes Goto stronger. Omega goes after the eyes again, then blows a kiss. He runs but Goto follows, but Goto ends up into a Snap Dragon Suplex! Omega knows he’s the smarter wrestler, and as Goto gets out, the Terminator drums start again. Omega rises, builds speed, and FLIES!

Both men crash and burn, but Omega gets up first to soak in the cheers. He makes sure his leg is still good while the 20 count begins again. Omega drags Goto up at 11, then puts him in the ring at 15. Omega takes aim from the apron, then climbs up top, for a missile dropkick to the back! He won’t cover there, he brings Goto up in another full nelson. Goto breaks free but Omega rocks him with haymakers and forearms. Omega runs, but into a fireman’s carry, and Ushigoroshi! Both men are down from exhaustion and soreness, but the fans are fired up again.

Omega drags himself to the apron, but Goto pursues with the clothesline! He clobbers Omega again, and onto the apron, but he’s not done yet. Goto drags Omega up to hoist him to the top rope. Goto climbs up to throw hands but Omega throws them back. They brawl, but Goto gets the edge with a headbutt. Goto fireman’s carry, SUPER USHIGOROSHI!!

Cover, TWO!! Somehow Omega survives, and fans are fired up from shock alone. Goto stands up and stalks Omega. He grabs Omega around the neck for the sleeper, and Omega fades. Goto doesn’t let it end there, but Omega fights out of the GTR, then shoves Goto away. Omega grabs Goto in a sleeper, but Goto turns it back around into his own. Omega reaches for ropes but can’t get away. Goto pushes Omega into a buckle, then German Suplexes on the rebound! But Omega lands on his feet! V-Trigger! Then from there, cross-leg brainbuster, Aoi Shoudou! Omega fights through the pain in his knees to target Goto again. BANG, he runs, another V-Trigger! Omega keeps going, but Goto escapes the electric chair to put on the sleeper!

Omega powers Goto to a corner, but Goto holds on. Another bump and Goto lets go, but then hops back on for a backpack sleeper. Omega turns around and decides to climb the corner! From the top rope, Omega just FALLS BACK! The hold is broken, but that was a double-edged move for Omega. Both men slowly stir as a 10 count begins. Omega stands at 9, while Goto manages to follow. Omega turns back to Goto, and he throws big forearms. Goto gives them back and now it’s a brawl. Fans duel as these two go back and forth. Omega runs to boot, then tries again, but Goto dodges. Omega sees the elbow coming and counters with another V-Trigger. He lifts Goto for a powerbomb, LAST RIDE SIT-OUT! Cover, TWO!! Goto survives a move borrowed from Kota Ibushi, and Omega can’t believe it.

Fans are at a fever pitch as Omega positions Goto before climbing up. Phoenix Splash FLOPS as Goto rolls away! Omega fails to use Ibushi’s golden combination, and Goto rises. Goto prepares his own finish, and buzzsaw kicks Omega down. Cover, TWO!! Goto won’t stop, he suplexes Omega, but Omega slips out. The knee buckles and Goto headbutts Omega. Goto scoops and spins Omega for the Ura Shouten facebuster slam! Cover, TWO!! This match is still not over, despite all both men have done to each other! Both men slowly stand as the fans continue to be thunderous.

Goto grabs Omega, but Omega knees out. Omega tries but Goto blocks the V-Trigger. Goto swings but Omega boots that away to then hit the V-Trigger! Full nelson to Snap Dragon Suplex! Cover, TWO!! Omega looks desperate, but he does have something left to give. He aims, BANG, but Goto blocks the V-Trigger! Goto holds onto the leg but Omega fights out. Omega gives muay thai knees, but runs into a lariat! Goto fires up, drags Omega up, SHOUTEN KAI! Cover, TWO!? The move that won in 2008 fails to win in 2016! Goto is not deterred, as he drags Omega up. Omega turns it around but Goto resists the suplex. Goto tries but Omega resists. Omega suplexes, Bloody Sunday! He borrows Prince Devitt’s move! Omega drags Goto up, and uses the Styles Clash!!

Cover, TWO!? Goto survives yet another Bullet Club move, but now Omega uses HIS move, the One Winged Angel!!

Cover, Omega wins!!

Winner: Kenny Omega

History is made! Omega is the first foreigner to win the G1 Climax, and did it in his first try! And Bullet Club appears to celebrate with him!

The Guerrillas of Destiny, Fale, Tokyo Pimp, and Hangman Page are out to wave the Bullet Club banner and hold up their triumphant leader. They only let him down so he can official receive the G1 Climax 26 trophy.

Omega is handed the G1 Climax banner to place in the stand, but he decides to drop that flag in place of the Bullet Club’s! Tama Tonga places that for him while he takes a moment to speak.

“Before the G1, oh heck, during the G1, a lot of people said the Bullet Club is over! The Bullet Club should disband!” But nope, the Bullet Club isn’t over, it’s 4 Life! People wonder if The Elite is over, since The Young Bucks aren’t present. They’re not over, because without The Elite, “wrestling is boring and it sucks.” But Omega must say this, “Days like this, they happen maybe once in a lifetime.” Don’t be afraid to dream and reach for the stars. But be warned, just as you’re about to reach your dreams, someone like Omega might swoop in and take them. Omega is the best, more talented, more determined, he is not like one of us. But he wrestles for us so count yourselves lucky.

This goes to all the other wrestlers in the world, especially those in Orlando. Today’s our lucky day, because this is a lot of study material to make your Omega Lite, but it won’t happen. Then to Okada, “you are the IWGP Heavyweight Champion” but has yet to meet Omega, so that is what we will get.

But Omega knows no one here understands, so he translates to Japanese. But just this once. “Are you surprised? I hate to say it, up until now I didn’t want to speak Japanese. I am the Heel after all.” As a Heel, he’s not supposed to speak Japanese, he’s supposed to hate your favorite wrestlers, because you’re not supposed to cheer a Heel. Do the fans hate him? Whether they do or not, Omega vows that Japan is his home, as is NJPW, so he’s not going “over there.” So good bye, MWAH, and good night, BANG! The streamers fall, and the true celebration begins!

 

NJPW and AXS review what led to this G1 Climax 27 finals!

In Block A, Tetsuya Naito has an amazing run as he earns 14 points with seven wins and only one loss to the bigger Bad Luck Fale and Tomohiro Ishii. He would beat out Hiroshi Tanahashi who had 12 points, as The Ace lost to Naito in their encounter, as well as to Zack Sabre Jr. The leader of Los Ingobernables won back in 2013 and looks to repeat. Speaking of repeating, Kenny Omega returns as he not only beats The Rainmaker in points but in their own G1 encounter! The Cleaner could not defeat Kazuchika Okada at Wrestle Kingdom, but his quest for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship has not ended. Which man will be a repeat G1 Climax champion after the match?

 

G1 Climax 27 Finals: Tetsuya Naito VS Kenny Omega!

The Uncontrollable Charisma has held many titles in NJPW, but was IWGP Heavyweight Champion just a year before this. Meanwhile, The Cleaner is the inaugural IWGP United States Heavyweight Champion, but he wants another chance at the world title. Who will become a repeat G1 Climax winner and the man aimed at The Rainmaker’s reign?

The official introductions are made, the entrance gear is removed and Red Shoes does his check. The bell rings and we begin!

Fans are already thunderous but Omega and Naito are calm as they circle. Naito and Omega approach, but Naito side steps Omega. Omega is annoyed for falling for Naito’s classic games, but they approach again. Naito does it again, wanting everyone to take it easy. Omega and Naito circle again, but now Omega uses Naito’s trick against him. Omega and Naito approach, and they both use the feint. Naito turns around to kick Omega then whip. Omega reverses but Naito holds rope to spit at Omega! Fans boo Naito, but Omega chops him several times. Omega whips Naito, but Naito ducks and counters the back drop by throwing Omega out. Naito builds speed, to Tranquilo! Fans cheer Naito’s ego, but Omega does his best to keep his cool.

Omega returns but Naito is ready. Naito throws Omega out again, then attacks him at the railings. They go around the corner, and Naito whips Omega at the barrier. Omega stops himself, mule kicks Naito, then opens the gate. He thinks better of disturbing the fans, so he moonsaults off the railing! Omega takes out Naito and fans fire up. Omega brings Naito up to ram him into the railings, then do it again before putting him in the ring. He runs, Kotaro Krusher! Cover, TWO! Fans rally up for Naito as he rolls away to ropes. Omega puts him in a corner to club his back and chop his chest. Omega whips Naito corner to corner, but Naito puts him on the apron. Naito sweeps the legs then drags Omega up, for an apron neckbreaker! Omega clutches his head but Naito just adds a draping neckbreaker to the floor!

Red Shoes comes out to check on Omega, but Naito won’t leave The Cleaner alone. Naito rams Omega into railings now, then puts Omega in the ring. Fans rally while Naito stomps Omega in the neck and shoulders. Naito elbows away on Omega in a corner, but Omega comes back with forearms of his own. Naito fires off more, then runs. Omega scoops Naito but Naito slips out for the inverted backbreaker and basement dropkick. Omega rolls out of the ring, so Naito runs. Naito looks to Tranquilo, but then he still DIVES!

The tope suicida is double-edged as Naito’s legs don’t get cleanly through ropes. Omega is prone on the commentary table while Naito catches his breath. Naito joins Omega out there, makes room for himself and Omega, then brings Omega up for a piledriver! It goes off the edge and perhaps to the railing and floor! The Young Bucks are concerned for Omega, but he’s still moving. Naito gets up and leaves Omega behind while he goes back to the ring. The 20 count reaches 10 as Omega stands back up. Omega gets back in at 15, but Naito is ready for him. Naito German Suplexes and bridges! TWO, but Naito keeps his cool. Naito stalks Omega, and puts on a full nelson. Omega breaks out and elbows back, but Naito dropkicks the knee. Naito runs in for a jump kick, sweeps the leg, but Omega boots the swinging dropkick away!

Fans start the Terminator drums for Omega as he drags Naito up. Omega chops Naito, then chops him again. Naito staggers, but Omega keeps on him with a running backbreaker! Cover, TWO! Fans rally up for Naito, but Omega gives him another chop. Cover, TWO! Omega puts Naito on his stomach to bring him into the half camel clutch. Omega pulls back on Naito, but Naito endures. Naito moves around and gets the ropebreak with his feet. Omega stomps him out for it, then drags Naito up for clubbing forearms. Omega whips Naito corner to corner hard, and Naito bounces off buckles to hit the mat. Naito writhes but Omega drags him back up. Omega whips him again, and harder still. Omega’s not done, he brings Naito up for a saido suplex. Cover, TWO!

Fans are thunderous again while Omega works on new ideas. Omega drags Naito up but Naito hits back with forearms. Naito clubs away on Omega, then whips him to ropes. Omega reverses, fireman’s carry, “You Can’t Escape!” rolling senton, but the impact messes with Omega’s own neck. Omega is slow to doing the moonsault, and Naito catches him on the top rope. Naito climbs up to join Omega, for a flying neckbreaker! Both men are down from exhaustion and pain, but fans rally up again. Omega slowly stands, then Naito follows. They both run in but Naito is the one rallying. Naito hip tosses to basement dropkick! Omega gets to a corner, and elbows back at Naito. Omega runs, but into an atomic drop. Naito repeats the jump kick, leg sweep and this time hits the swinging dropkick!

Fans applaud while Naito poses. Naito gets up and goes for a neckbreaker, but Omega elbows out. Naito kicks Omega back, but runs into Omega’s huricanrana! The Terminator drums begin again as Naito rolls out. Omega rises, builds speed, and FLIES!

Direct hit, and the Young Bucks are there to coach Omega up. Fans duel between the two as Omega stands up. He brings Naito up and into the ring, then fires himself up. Omega climbs up top, for the missile dropkick to the back! Cover, TWO, but Omega says he’s going to end this. Omega stands and stalks Naito. He brings Naito up in the full nelson, but Naito breaks free and fights back. Naito runs but is reeled into a back chop. Omega tries again but Naito breaks free of the full nelson to then rock Omega with a right. Naito kicks but misses the enziguri, and ends up in a deadlift German Suplex! Omega doesn’t cover, but Naito is still dazed. Omega drags Naito up, cross leg lift, for the Aoi Shoudo! Fans and the Young Bucks are all fired up while Omega loads up.

Omega aims, BANG, but misses the V-Trigger. Naito German Suplexes but Omega lands on his feet. Omega runs into a tornado DDT! Both men are down but the Bucks coach Omega up. Fans duel while Naito and Omega slowly stand. Naito runs in and hoists Omega up. Naito climbs, but Omega makes it a SUPER Snake Eyes! Omega keeps going, Snap Dragon! Then from the corner, V-Trigger! Cover, TWO!! Omega can’t believe it, but Naito does survive. Omega wants to steal the Jay Driller but Naito fights out. He gets clubbed on the back, and Omega tries again. Naito takes that powerbomb lift and turns it into a DDT! Both men are down, but Omega crawls to a corner. Fans continue to be thunderous for both men. Naito slowly sits up, but Omega takes aim again.

Naito runs in, blocks the boots, and gives Omega the draping backbreaker! Then hammerlock and half nelson, but Omega fights out. Enziguri hits! Naito whips but Omega reverses, only to take a leaping forearm smash from Naito! Naito lifts Omega for the hammerlock and lift, GLORIA! Cover, TWO!! Omega survives, even with all the damage to his neck! Naito drags Omega up, wrenches, tilt-o-whirls, but Destino is countered into the crunchy roll driver! Cover, TWO!! Omega grows frustrated with Naito but the fans are loving this. Omega goes to a corner, but Naito is on him. They brawl while Naito climbs up. Naito prepares a superplex, but Omega DDTs Naito into the post! Omega keeps on Naito, adjusting their positions. Omega brings Naito up, SUPER STEINER counter!!

Both men are down again, but the fans are still fired up. Naito puts Omega up on the top rope in another corner, then climbs up. Naito gives Omega a SUPER Reverse-Rana! Cover, TWO!! Omega continues to endure so much damage to the neck. Naito scoops and slams Omega, then climbs up top. Stardust Press FLOPS as Omega evades! They’re both down again, but Omega drags himself up first. Omega hobbles over to Naito, then drags him up. Fans are dueling while Omega prepares the Driller. Omega lifts, and hits it! Cover, TWO!? Omega still can’t believe this. He gets up again, drags Naito up, and gives him a point-blank V-Trigger! Omega sits Naito up again, for another V-trigger! He won’t stop, he wants to break Naito. He brings Naito up again, but Naito falls before the V-Trigger can hit.

Omega drags his dead weight up, runs, but Naito blocks the V-Trigger. Omega pries himself free to hit it again, then gut-wrench for the Dr. Wily Bomb! Cover, TWO!? Naito will not die! Fans are at a fever pitch now, but Omega takes aim again. BANG, for another V-Trigger! Omega lifts Naito up in the electric chair, but Naito revives to hit another Reverse-Rana! They’re both at the ropes so this won’t even be a cover. Both men slowly get up. DESTINO OUTTA NOWHERE! TWO!?! But that doesn’t stop Naito, Destino countered into the electric chair, CROYT’S WRATH! TWO!! Omega keeps going, Rain-Trigger! The Cleaner shows no mercy as he once again takes aim. BANG, and another V-Trigger! Then, electric chair, but wait, DESTINO!! Fans are about to lose their voices they’re shouting that much.

Both men are down, so a 10 count begins. The count reaches 7 before Omega and Naito sit up. Omega stalks Naito, but Naito hits first. Omega chops back, but Naito comes back with a forearm. They both stagger but come back, and Omega chops again. Naito forearms Omega, but Omega slaps. Now it’s a slap fight! Naito gets the edge, then makes it forearms again. Omega hits a V-Trigger! Then runs for another! Omega runs again, but Naito denies the next one with his rolling kick! Naito uses the Snap Dragon! Cover, TWO, but barely as Omega only rolls off. Naito comes back, Destino denied, but not with the tilt-o-whirl! Cover, TWO!?!? But Naito feels it, he’s close. He brings Omega up, another Destino!

Cover, Naito wins!!

Winner: Tetsuya Naito

And there it is! Naito becomes a two-time G1 Climax winner with 2013 and now 2017! Omega, who fails to be the first foreigner to go back-to-back, leaves with the help of The Bucks. Meanwhile, LIJ joins their victorious leader in the ring. EVIL, Bushi, Sanada and Hiromu wait on the outside while Naito is presented the G1 Climax trophy. He goes to throw it!?

Just kidding! He wants everyone to relax, he’s not that crass. Masahiro Chono presents Naito with the banner, and even fist bumps Naito before Red Shoes places the banner in the stand. Naito takes up the mic to speak.

“Buenas noches, Ryogoku! For everyone here and in the world, who support LIJ… did you enjoy the G1 and pro-wrestling more than previous years? The winner is Naito from LIJ. I want to say thank you to you guys who gave me the greatest stage. Gracias, amigos!” Fans applaud his gratitude, but he has more to say. Naito won the G1 Climax four years ago, “but at that time, I set myself up, so I couldn’t say what I really felt. But me now, I can say what I want to say with confidence. I’m the main player of New Japan!” A bold claim, but fans respect it. Now to finish, please shout as loud as you can, for the roll call! EVIL! Bushi! Sanada! Hiromu! And Naito! We are Los Ingobernables~~~ de Japon! And the streamers are released!

 


 

My Thoughts:

Two great matches in two hours, and clearly it is all in honor of the 28th G1 Climax that’s currently underway. The previous two G1 Climax finals are also fitting because they help tell the story of current IWGP Heavyweight Champion, Kenny Omega. Omega was amazing in both these matches, and logically he gets better from 26 to 27, and this also speaks to the greatness of both Goto and Naito. Omega winning G1 Climax 26 was proof of how popular he was around the world, but especially with the Japan home base. It was a great element in his promo to get meta about Heels being hated, and in Japan that means speaking anything other than Japanese. But Omega got over because he knows Japanese fluently, and that with his ring skill is why he made it to the top, with a natural feeling build.

My Score(s): G1 26: 8/10; G1 27: 8.5/10; Overall: 8.5/10


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Mitchell’s Ring of Honor Report! (7/14/18)

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ROH WRESTLING TELEVISION, Episode 356

ROH holds its very first Six Man Tag Gauntlet match to determine #1 contenders! Who will survive the trios turmoil to then challenge The Kingdom’s reign?

 

All images courtesy of the Fite.TV app and streaming service

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Kelly Klein VS Jenny Rose; Kelly wins.
  • ROH World Six Man Tag Team Championship #1 Contenders Gauntlet Match: Kenny King, Chuckie T & Eli Isom win and will challenge The Kingdom for the ROH World Six Man Tag Team Championships.

PLAY BY PLAY

The Kingdom speaks.

“Oh the time has come, the Walrus said, for the march of the Melvins.” Tonight is the night to determine new #1 contenders to the ROH World Six Man Tag Team Championships, but who cares?! Are we forgetting something? The Kingdom are the first, the last, the only Six Man Tag Team Champions. But Matt Taven cares because it took them a full year to get the titles back, and now a bunch of Melvins get a shot in one night? No one else had to overcome the conspiracy they did. But when it’s all said and done, these belts will stay with them, because “I’m Matt Taven, and this is my Kingdom.”

Who will move on to challenge the ROH World Six Man Tag Champs?

 

Kelly Klein VS Jenny Rose!

While the Gatekeeper has been back on a roll with the first pinfall over Tenille Dashwood, the American Joshi is looking to win her way to another match with WOH Champion, Sumie Sakai. Who will overcome and climb up another rung on the Women of Honor ladder?

Kelly chooses not to uphold the Code of Honor, because she wants to tell Jenny that the first shot at Sumie was hers! If Jenny gets in her way, she’s going down. Kelly then pie-faces Jenny, so Jenny slaps her back! The bell rings and they tie up fast and furious. Jenny gets the wristlock but Kelly reverses. Jenny reverses it back but Kelly gets a headlock. Kelly brings Jenny down but Jenny slips out to a hammerlock and headlock. Jenny gets the takeover but Kelly the headscissors. Jenny pops out and rolls Kelly, ONE. Kelly swings on Jenny but Jenny rolls her up again, ONE! Jenny kicks Kelly then whips, but Kelly reverses. Jenny kicks back from the corner, then climbs up, to catch Kelly in the arm-drag. Fans rally up behind Jenny as she takes aim.

Jenny runs but into an elbow, then Kelly throws her mouth piece as a distraction so that the ref doesn’t see her throw Jenny by her hair. Kelly stomps away on Jenny, then covers, TWO. The Gatekeeper keeps on Jenny while we go to break.

ROH returns and Kelly has Jenny in a neck wrench. Fans rally up and Jenny fights out with elbows. Kelly pushes Jenny down, then runs for a big clothesline. Kelly toys with Jenny now while taunting the fans. Jenny gets up and throws forearms on Kelly. Jenny whips Kelly to ropes but Kelly reverses to run her over again. Kelly embraces both the cheers and jeers while going for a very lax cover. TWO, but Kelly just shrugs and grins. Kelly toys with Jenny more, but Jenny pushes back. Kelly stomps her out, then drags her up. The ref counts as she holds onto Jenny’s hair, and she lets go at 4. Jenny hits back with body shots!

Kelly throws a forearm, then has Jenny in a corner for more forearms and elbows. Kelly hits a discus clothesline then a big boot on the run! She drags Jenny up again, into a fireman’s carry, but Jenny fights out. Jenny elbows away, then code breaker! Kelly staggers and Jenny fires off forearms in a corner. Jenny whips Kelly corner to corner, big corner splash! She goes again, for a big back elbow. Jenny brings Kelly out now, but Kelly resists the suplex. Kelly reverses but Jenny ducks the “Klein-Line” to throw her with a German Suplex! Kelly staggers up, into a SPEAR! Cover, TWO!

Jenny grows frustrated, but she still has more. Fans rally up with her as she brings Kelly up. Jenny hits a cravat facebuster, then brings Kelly up again, but Kelly fights her way out with an elbow. Kelly grabs Jenny, snap suplex and roll through to the #EndoftheMatch guillotine!

Jenny reaches, flails, endures, but fades! She’s out, Kelly wins!

Winner: Kelly Klein, by submission

The Gatekeeper holds on a bit longer to make a point, but either way, she’s won. Will the Pretty Badass use this win to propel herself towards the Ray of Sunshine?

 

The Dawgs are desperate.

Rhett Titus & Will Ferrara want, or perhaps they need, the Notorious Hitman, Shane Taylor to join them in order to qualify for the Six Man Gauntlet. So they talk to The American Nightmare, Cody! What’s going on, buddy? Sorry to bother you, but The Dawgs just happened to overhear Cody talking money, and that’s what they need! The Six Man Gauntlet is coming up and they have their third man, they just need a way to pay him. So they’re asking Cody to give them money to give to Shane? It’s 2018, do they really think he’s got cash on him? Plus, he just helped finance an event at a 10 THOUSAND seat arena, do they expect him to have spare cash to give? Use your heads! Okay, okay, then they can go to Marty Scurll! He did just sign a record deal.

No, no, they’re not going to Marty. Marty doesn’t have money, either. Cody throws the Dawgs a bone with some cash he had waiting. He makes it rain for Rhett & Ferrara! The Dawgs are rolling in twenties, but will it be enough to convince Shane to join up?

 

ROH World Six Man Tag Team Championship #1 Contenders Gauntlet Match!

Five teams of three men will compete, two trios at a time, until only one team remains! Who will stand tall to challenge Taven, O’Ryan & Marseglia for their titles?

Before any of the teams enter, the champions themselves join commentary to watch this match closely, and to generally annoy Ian Riccaboni. But as always, The Kingdom cries conspiracy over this truly sudden development in the Six Man Tag Division. The order has been shuffled, and the very first team selected is… Shane Taylor & The Dawgs!

It seems that pile of money Cody tossed to Rhett & Ferrara was enough to persuade Taylor to join them. This makeshift team will start against… Jonathan Gresham, Alex Shelley & Leon St. Giovanni! With Chris Sabin and Shaheem Ali out, Teams Search & Destroy and Coast 2 Coast combined for a unique combination.

Shane Taylor & The Dawgs VS Jonathan Gresham, Alex Shelley & Leon St. Giovanni!

A pair of makeshift teams does not impress The Kingdom in the slightest, but the Gauntlet begins with Taylor and the Human Rocket, LSG. LSG and Taylor circle, Taylor lunges but LSG ducks. LSG chops Taylor but it does nothing to the big man. Taylor swings but LSG hits back. LSG bobs and weaves then back kicks, then speeds up. Taylor keeps up and knees LSG down! Taylor drags LSG up and forearms him into the Dawg’s corner. Rhett tags in and Taylor holds LSG in place for the running kick. Rhett scoops LSG up but LSG slips out to dropkick. LSG tags in Gresham and the Octopus forearms Rhett in the corner. Rhett waistlocks, but Gresham gets the leg for a takedown. Rhett pushes Gresham away but Gresham cartwheels. Gresham runs in and springboard headscissors Rhett, then dropkicks him down.

Fans fire up as Gresham runs in, but he blocks a boot. Rhett jabs Gresham down, then tags in Ferrara. Lil’ Willie swaggers about but gets caught into an arm snap. Ferrara kicks back, then whips, but Gresham reverses to uppercut the arm. Gresham brings Ferrara over and tags in Shelley. Shelly climbs up and fans go wild as he gives a macho ax handle. Shelley wrenches but Ferrara knees low. Ferrara runs but Rhett tags in with some authority. Rhett and Ferrara argue, but Ferrara feeds Shelley to Rhett’s slingshot shoulder. Ferrara takes out Gresham & LSG, then starts arguing with Rhett again. Rhett shoves Ferrara down to catapult him, Ferrara forearms Shelly down.

Shelley scrambles to a corner while Rhett brags and boasts. Rhett drags Shelley up for a buckle bump, then tags in Taylor. Taylor stomps Shelley, then trash talks the Motor City Machine Gun. He scoops Shelley up but Shelley slips out to fire off elbows. Shelley spins but into a headbutt. He comes back for a kick but gets a knee! Taylor rolls Shelley to knee him again. Cover, but Gresham breaks it up and fires off his own forearms while we go to break.

ROH returns as Taylor slams Gresham down. Taylor runs to add the splash! But he’s going after the wrong man, because Gresham isn’t legal. Tag to Ferrara, then tag to Rhett. Ferrara rams his shoulder into Shelly in a corner, then Rhett runs in for a helluva kick. Rhett feeds him to Ferrara for the BLL hammerlock lariat, then Rhett himself leaps for the Doggy Splash! But Shelley moves, the splash flops! Ferrara grabs Shelley, keeping him away from LSG. Shelley standing switches but Taylor comes in. Shelley’s ready for him, and Gresham adds an enziguri to the DDT complete shot combo! Fans are fired up while Shelley gets to LSG. LSG rallies on The Dawgs, then tosses Rhett with a back drop. Ferrara runs in but into a swinging gutbuster and rolling neckbreaker! LSG climbs up and takes aim to LEAP!

The Human Rocket takes out Taylor & The Dawgs, and Hammerstein is loving it. LSG puts Ferrara in the ring, then climbs up again. Rhett slows him down, and he has to jump over Ferrara. Ferrara tries but misses the BLL, LSG rolls him up! There’s the three count, LSG ELIMINATES The Dawgs & Shane Taylor!! The Kingdom fakes sympathy for The Dawgs and all that wasted money. But now we get the third team in this Gauntlet… The Last Real Men, Silas Young, Beer City Bruiser & Brian Milonas.

Jonathan Gresham, Alex Shelley & Leon St. Giovanni VS The Last Real Men!

While the keg-carrying BCB and his buddy the Kingpin take their time, the ROH World Television Champion rushes the ring. Shelley swipes at Silas but Silas drags him out of the ring first. Silas throws Shelley into the barriers, then dodges Gresham. Gresham FLIES from the apron, but then BCB cannonballs outta nowhere! LSG dropkicks BCB, then slingshots out onto Milonas, but Milonas catches him easily. Milonas slams LSG on the apron, then gets in the ring. Milonas stalks LSG, then brings him up. LSG slips out to throw forearms, but runs into Milonas’ lift. BCB runs in to add a dropkick to Milonas’ sidewalk slam!

BCB aims at Shelley and runs into the corner for a BIG right hand. He feeds Shelley to Milonas while he climbs up top. Milonas holds Shelley and BCB flies in, but Shelley moves, and the missile dropkick goes into Milonas! Shelley baits BCB and dumps him out. Silas runs in for the full nelson knee then hits a cutter! But Gresham gets Silas in a waistlock. Silas standing switches, but so does Gresham, then Silas does it again. They go back and forth with standing switches and the fans are loving it. Gresham gets one more but gets bucked off, only to come back and start the cycle again! Silas, then Gresham, then Silas, then Gresham, but Silas stops the cycle with a takedown.

Gresham shoves Silas to ropes but runs into a drop toehold. BCB holds Gresham in place for Silas’ rope attack. BCB rocks Gresham then Milonas flattens him! Milonas the Mastodon stomps around then stomps on Gresham while we go to break.

ROH returns and BCB throws Gresham into the corner. BCB argues with the ref, but he stops Gresham from getting away with knees, and even a bite to the forehead. BCB argues that he doesn’t have enough teeth to bite someone, then he throws Gresham into Silas’ boot. Silas tags in, and he brings Gresham up. Gresham resists the suplex but Silas fires body shots. Gresham and Silas go back and forth in suplex attempts, but then Gresham slips to a waistlock. The standing switch cycle begins again! Gresham changes it up with a DDT! Fans rally as Gresham crawls over. Tag to LSG!

LSG rallies on Silas, then hits BCB for good measure. He dares Milonas to do something, and Milonas rushes in, only to get dumped back out. BCB returns to back suplex but LSG slips out. LSG speeds up, springboard forearms! But Silas returns, only to get rolled up. TWO, and Silas boots LSG. LSG comes back with an enziguri, to then scoop DDT Silas. Cover, but BCB breaks it. BCB drags LSG up but LSG boots BCB out. Silas tags in Milonas, and Milonas attacks LSG. Milonas puts LSG in a corner, then backs off to a corner. Silas comes in and whips Milonas corner to corner, but LSG dodges! Milonas hits buckles while LSG clotheslines Silas! LSG kicks Silas away to then run at Milonas, but into a boot. BCB grabs LSG, and Milonas climbs up, for a MASSIVE Hart Attack leg drop! Cover, but Shelley breaks it fast!

Silas returns to get Shelley with the full nelson but Shelley arm-drags out. Shelley runs into a fireman’s carry but slips out of it, only to get a back elbow. Silas runs, but Shelley follows, only to get the backbreaker and lariat. Gresham runs into the backbreaker, but he gets under the lariat, for a German Suplex! BCB returns, to give Gresham a sidewinder DDT! Milonas returns, and the Bouncers of ROH set things up with LSG. BCB is on one corner, Milonas is on the other. Gresham & Shelley return to trip BCB, then anchor Milonas. BCB tumbles down while Team Search 2 Coast gang up on Milonas. Milonas falls, and LSG adjusts. 450 Splash!!

Search 2 Coast ELIMINATES Silas & The Bouncers!! Thanks to the Human Rocket, this makeshift team has made it to the halfway point. The fourth team… SoCal Uncensored!

Jonathan Gresham, Alex Shelley & Leon St. Giovanni VS SoCal Uncensored!

And they rush the ring even faster than Silas did!

It’s a brawl as SCU beat down the tired Search 2 Coast. They embrace the heat as Christopher Daniels whips Shelley corner to corner and then rams his shoulder in. Daniels then feeds Shelley to Frankie Kazarian’s slingshot DDT. The SCU regroup and sort out, Daniels starts with LSG. Daniels whips LSG to the ropes then runs him over. Tag to Kaz, and the Addiction toy with LSG. Fans rally behind LSG while Kaz whips him corner to corner. Kaz hits a big corner clothesline, then a swinging dropkick. He kips up to show off, then grinds his knee into LSG. He backs off at 4, then drags LSG up. Kaz tags Scorpio Sky, who kicks LSG’s ribs. Scorpio pulls LSG back in a chinlock while we go to break.

ROH returns and SCU circle a wounded Shelley. The referee keeps them back to check on one half of the MCMG, so the SCU goes after LSG. They whip LSG corner to corner, then Daniels adds a forearm smash. Daniels brings LSG over to coordinate with Kaz and Scorpio. Kaz tags in, rams his knee into LSG, then tags Daniels and Scorpio back. Kaz whips LSG into a corner, then Daniels runs in, but LSG boots him away. LSG boots Kaz, then boots Scorpio. LSG hops up but Scorpio throws him with a SUPER huricanrana! The Addiction combine for Celebrity Rehab!

Cover, SCU ELIMINATES LSG and team! A valiant effort from the most makeshift team of the match, but now SCU faces the fifth and final team… Kenny King, Chuckie T and Eli Isom!

Nevermind, this is the most makeshift team of the entire Gauntlet! Can the K I N G, the Kentucky Gentleman and the Future of Honor combine to get past former ROH World Six Man Tag Champions to then challenge the current ones?

SoCal Uncensored VS Kenny King, Chuckie T & Eli Isom!

The Kingdom doesn’t even recognize who Isom is, and therefore can’t understand why he’s getting a chance. Their opinions aside, the teams sort out and the Code of Honor is not upheld. Chuckie T starts against the Fallen Angel and they circle around the ring. They tie up, and Chuckie gets a headlock. Daniels powers out but Chuckie runs him over. Chuckie runs but into a kick. Daniels puts Chuckie in a corner to stomp a mudhole, then takes time to boast. Chuckie gets up and knees Daniels in the face! Chuckie whips Daniels for a back drop, then runs him over with lariats. Daniels tags out to Scorpio, and Scorpio promises to break Chuckie in half. They circle and Chuckie blocks a kick. Chuckie chops back, then tags Kenny King.

They double whip and double elbow Scorpio. They can’t seem to agree on whether to shake hands, high five or first bump, so they just skip that to drop elbows on Scorpio. Cover, TWO! Scorpio rakes Kenny’s eyes, then tags Kaz. Kaz throws forearms on Kenny, then rocks him with haymakers. Kaz puts Kenny into a corner, but Kenny fires forearms back. Kenny whips but Kaz rolls off his back. Kenny blocks the kick to give a kick, then scoops Kaz for the slam. Tag to Chuckie, and it’s time for the most dangerous move in the world… the slow senton! Chuckie flexes while we go to one last commercial break.

ROH returns once more, and Eli Isom is finally in! Isom and Kaz speed things up, and Isom knees Kaz down. Cover, ONE, but Isom whips Kaz again. Daniels saves Kaz from the dropkick, then Kaz grounds ‘n’ pounds Isom into the mat. Kaz backs off at 4, then drags Isom up into a camel clutch. Isom endures, so Kaz stomps him out. Fans rally up for the young star, but Kaz brings him over to bump him off Daniels’ & Scorpio’s boots. Scorpio snapmares Isom to scrape his face with the soles of his shoes. Isom flounders to a corner but Scorpio rocks him with a haymaker. Scorpio brings him back to tag Daniels in. Daniels lariats Isom down, covers, TWO. He brings Isom up for elbows, then scoop slams him down.

Tag to Kaz before the slingshot elbow. Kaz tags Scorpio then hits the slingshot leg drop. Scorpio slingshots for the splash, then covers. TWO, but Scorpio keeps on Isom with a facelock. Tag to Daniels, and he kicks Isom in the ribs. Daniels stomps Isom down, then wraps on a chinlock. Isom endures while fans rally up. He feeds off the energy to fight out with body shots. Daniels clubs him back down, then hits Chuckie T for good measure. Daniels whips Isom, but Isom ducks and dodges, double clotheslines wipe them both out! Isom and Daniels crawl, hot tag to Kenny! Kenny rallies with jabs and haymakers on Daniels. Scorpio runs in and fires off on Kenny. Scorpio whips but Kenny reverses. Kenny catches Scorpio as he goes up and over, then drops him with the chin checker and spinning roundhouse.

Kaz comes in, he and Kenny dodge each other’s attacks, and Kenny gets a SPINEBUSTER! Chuckie returns while Kaz gets to a corner. Scorpio is in the opposite corner, so both Kenny and Chuckie run in for corner clotheslines. They run back the other way, but Daniels denies them their hug. Daniels kicks Kenny, then throws a forearm. Kenny ends up in his corner and Isom tags in. Daniels misses in the corner, and Isom groups together with Kenny and Chuckie. They hit triple forearm smashes! Then rotate to hit them again! And then, triple hug! Chuckie clotheslines Kaz out, then Kenny slingshot corkscrews! Kaz avoids it, then slingshots out onto Kenny while Daniels & Scorpio attack Chuckie & Isom! Scorpio FLIES onto Chuckie, then Daniels has Isom. Angel’s- No, Isom counters into Northern Lights! Bridging cover, ISOM ELIMINATES SCU!!

Winners: Kenny King, Chuckie T & Eli Isom, Isom pinning

It’s true! SoCal Uncensored doesn’t want to accept it, but the rookie helps his team win it all! This Cinderella story challenges Taven, O’Ryan & Marseglia, can they go all the way to be the new ROH World Six Man Tag Champions?

Meanwhile, The Kingdom laugh at the SCU for choking when victory was theirs. Will they be laughing after facing the trio of underdogs? Or will they continue to be the first, last, and only ROH World Six Man Tag Champions?

 


 

My Thoughts:

A pretty solid episode of ROH, and logically the Gauntlet is the majority of it. Kelly Klein VS Jenny Rose was a good WOH match as these two are the more polished members of the division. Kelly wins because her story of building back from her streak being broken takes precedent over any other. I’m sure Kelly will be the next challenger for Sumie in their rematch from the championship tournament, and she might even win to be the second-ever WOH Champion.

Then the Gauntlet match was really fun for having two real teams and three made-up ones. LSG really builds himself as a star being the guy to pin and eliminate two teams. But good ol’ SoCal Uncensored are the Heels that ruin the fun by stopping their streak. And while surprising, Eli Isom being the one to pin them makes sense given how much crap The Kingdom was giving him on commentary. That underestimation can be the story of their championship match, and it’d be great if Isom was the guy to get the pin there, too. It’ll really piss The Kingdom off and probably get a good reaction from the fans in attendance. There aren’t many trios in ROH, least of all Face ones, so a full program of Isom, King and Chuckie against the Kingdom could make for a good story in the Six Man Tag Division.

My Score: 8.3/10


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Coverage

Mitchell’s Lucha Underground Report! (7/18/18)

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Lucha Underground Season 4, “Break the Machine”

The Machine called Cage wants to be Lucha Underground Champion, and is willing to break Pentagon Dark to do it. Will he succeed? Or end up broken instead?

 

Gifs to come courtesy of frentique.tumblr.com

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Ancient Aztec Medallion Match: Paul London w/ The Rabbit Tribe VS Desmond X; Desmond wins the seventh and final Aztec Medallion.
  • Odd One Out Over the Top Rope Battle Royal: The Mack wins, and chooses ??? to be left out of the Gift of the Gods Championship match.
  • Johnny Mundo w/ Taya VS Vibora w/ Kobra Moon; Vibora wins.
  • Lucha Underground Championship: Pentagon Dark VS Cage; Pentagon wins and retains the Lucha Underground Championship.

PLAY BY PLAY

Ancient Aztec Medallion Match: Paul London w/ The Rabbit Tribe VS Desmond X

The Mad Hatter has a new edge after sacrificing Mascarita Sagrada, but he faces a new face in the Temple for the seventh and final spot in the Gift of the Gods Championship match. Can Desmond make an impact in his debut?

The bell rings, but Desmond is distracted by Saltador and Mala Suerte jumping in and running around. London hits Desmond in the opening, then stomps and hammers away. London chokes Desmond at the ropes, then tucks him in. Mala and Saltador hold Desmond in place for the basement dropkick! Desmond tumbles out of the ring, but the others hold him up. London runs in again, but Desmond sends the harebrained henchmen into the dropkick! Desmond goes up to the apron to mule kick London down, then Arabian Press moonsault! London gets out of the way, so Desmond only hits Saltador and Mala. London is back in the ring, and slingshots to wreck Desmond with another dropkick. He drags Desmond up and into the ring to slingshot to the Oklahoma Roll. TWO, and Desmond crawls to a corner.

London goes over and rains down lefts and rights with frantic fury. Desmond crawls away but London is on him again. Desmond shoves then ducks London to hit a back elbow. London walks into a strike fest and leaping complete shot! Fans rally behind Desmond as he aims at London, but the henchmen grab his feet! London runs in, but Desmond gets free and lets London hit buckles. Desmond runs in but into boots. London climbs up, but Desmond springs up to super headscissor London down! Cover, TWO! Fans cheer Desmond while London rolls away. Desmond gets up and runs corner to corner, but misses the uppercut. London runs but hits buckles again, and Desmond hits a swing kick. Desmond goes for a tornado DDT but London powers out of it. Desmond handspring Pele kicks London down! Cover, TWO, but Desmond keeps going.

Desmond climbs up top and takes aim, but London rolls away. Desmond rolls through his 450, but then turns around into London’s double knees! London goes full rabies as he foams at the mouth. He stalks Desmond then brings him up, but the tiger suplex is countered to a wheelbarrow pin! Desmond wins!

Winner: Desmond X; wins the final Aztec Medallion

From debut to a Gift of the Gods contender, Desmond has the X factor needed to survive in the Temple. Will he also use that same potential to be the next GotG Champion?

 

Antonio Cueto presents the Gift of the Gods Championship.

He congratulates Desmond X on becoming the final entrant for next week’s massive GotG match. Antonio has been a promoter for over 40 years, and can’t ever remember such a star-studded match. “Next week is gonna be epico!” But that means the seven fighters must now place their medallions in the belt to officially claim a spot in Lucha Underground history. Introducing first: Dragon Azteca Jr! The Eagle Tribe’s representative heads down the stairs, and places the Snake Tribe medallion. Second is King Cuerno, the King of Hunters! He presents the medallion of his Deer Tribe. Third is Ivelisse, the Baddest Bitch in the Temple. She enters her first ever GotG match as she presents the Moth Tribe medallion. Fourth is Desmond X, who only just won the Rabbit medallion.

Fifth is Son of Havoc, who won alongside The Mack just last week. Havoc places the Jaguar Tribe’s medallion, followed by The Mack presenting the Eagle Tribe medallion. And last but not least, Mil Muertes! He appears with Catrina to present the Death Tribe’s medallion. All seven medallions are in the belt, and all seven competitors stand in the ring. Antonio wishes to have some fun. “To some, seven is a lucky number. But I have always found it to be unlucky.” That means that next week, ONLY SIX will get to compete. Because tonight, the odd man–or woman–out will be decided in a surprise Over the Top Rope Battle Royal! The winner gets to choose who doesn’t join the rest of them next week!! “What’re you waiting for?! FIGHT!!”

Odd One Out Over the Top Rope Battle Royal!

The bell rings, Catrina gets out of the way, and all seven luchadors go at it! Cuerno goes after Ivelisse while Muertes takes care of both The Mack and Desmond X. Azteca and Havoc stay clear while Cuerno tries to toss Ivelisse. She fights back while Azteca runs into Muertes’ barreling shoulder. Muertes throws and ELIMINATES Cuerno! Muertes then targets Ivelisse as she climbs up top. He grabs her by the throat, then throws her out onto Cuerno! Ivelisse is ELIMINATED! Muertes then grabs Desmond and ELIMINATES him with a single toss! Azteca staggers up but runs into Muertes, who powerbomb lifts him. Azteca counters with a headscissors while Mack and Havoc work together, they all ELIMINATE Muertes! Of course, Aztec is also ELIMINATED for touching the floor, leaving just The Mack and Havoc!

Havoc and Mack, two thirds of the Lucha Underground Trios Champions, must now face each other. This will decide who is completely gone from the Gift of the Gods Championship match. The fans are divided, but Havoc assures Mack that it’s no big deal. Havoc then DIVES onto everyone else!!

He ELIMINATES himself! The Mack wins!

Winner: The Mack

That was surprising to everyone, including The Mack! He respects Havoc’s self-sacrifice, but now who will he say is not in the GotG match? Mack thinks for a moment. He ain’t afraid of no man, but “Mil Muertes scares the shit out of me.” In other words, sorry, but Muertes is out! Mack takes his leave and Catrina and Muertes are pissed, but Muertes does something about it! He attacks everyone else!! He blasts through Cuerno, Havoc and Azteca, throws Ivelisse down, then Choke Slams Desmond! But none of it matters, he’s still out. Who of the remaining six will take the Gift of the Gods Championship, and then use it to challenge THE Lucha Underground Champion?

 

Johnny Mundo w/ Taya VS Vibora w/ Kobra Moon!

A war of factions has broken out in Lucha Underground between the Worldwide Underground and the Reptile Tribe. Can the Guru of Greatness lead his team to vengeful victory with a win over #Luchasaurus? Or will Mundo end up the one going to #SlamTown?

The bell rings, and Mundo gets a waistlock and kick. He kicks but Vibora blocks and uppercuts back. They circle, and Mundo sticks and moves with the giant snake man. That superman rabbit punch staggers Vibora, but Vibora comes back with a forearm of his own. Vibora runs, but Taya grabs his feet. Mundo runs, but Kobra returns the favor. The luchadoras take notice of each other, and they get in the ring now! Taya SPEARS Kobra! “Wera Loca” throws the Queen of Snakes out, and Vibora grows concerned for his monarch. The referee gets distracted keeping the luchadoras apart, so he doesn’t see Mundo’s low blow mule kick out of the pop-up! Mundo adds the Flying Chuck! Then the shining wizard to standing shooting star! Cover, ONE and Vibora sits up. Vibora drags Mundo up, fireman’s carry, modified Widomaker!

But Vibora isn’t done yet. He brings Mundo back up, whips him to a corner, then runs in for the big back elbow. He keeps going, boot wash! Vibora has the Believers on his side as he gives Mundo a Vibora Trigger! Mundo is rocked, but Vibora drags him back up for a straitjacket to torture rack, BURNING HAMMER! Cover, TWO!! Mundo somehow survives, but Vibora grabs him around the throat now. Choke Slam but Mundo slips out to hit a BIG Poison-Rana! Vibora’s up, front Spike-Rana! Fans rally up as Mundo climbs. But Vibora sits up again! Mundo isn’t sure what to do, so he CARTWHEEL DIVES onto Kobra!

Fans lose their minds while Taya trash talks Kobra. But Vibora is only angered by this offense to his queen. The WWU flip him off and he gives chase, but the Darewolf, PJ Black, is lurking with a chair.

Mundo leads Vibora around the ring while Taya keeps the ref distracted. They turn the corner and SMACK! PJ gets a direct shot on Vibora. Mundo drags the dead weight up and into the ring, then climbs up. Fin Del Mundo! Cover, TWO!??! How?! Believers are behind Vibora but Mundo is furious. He SUPERKICKS the referee! PJ brings in chairs and Taya joins in. They all toy with the Luchasaurus, then put a chair around the neck. Mundo grabs the other chair, but here comes Drago! The firespitter of the Reptile Tribe flies in to missile dropkick Mundo down! He baits Taya and PJ away, so Daga can come in to swing on them! The Reptile King and Knight chase off the WWU minions and that leaves us with Vibora and Mundo 1v1.

Mundo grabs a chair while the fans duel. Vibora stands, ducks and handsprings, to SUPERKICK the chair, then SUPERKICK Mundo! He whips Mundo, for the powerbomb! Then, CHOKE SLAM! Standing moonsault! A new referee comes in to count, TWO!! “This is Awesome!” but far from over. Vibora drags Mundo up, puts him in a corner, then takes aim from across the way. But Ricky Mundo appears to save his hero! But then Vibora goes to the corner for the ASAI!

Believers are thunderous as he wipes both Mundos out. Vibora puts Johnny Mundo in the ring, then climbs up again. Mundo springs to life and ducks under to then roundhouse Vibora. SUPERKICK, too, then hook kick! Mundo runs but into a headbutt! Vibora grabs at Mundo but Mundo slips and slides around for another swing kick. Mundo springboards, but into a SUPER CHOKE SLAM!!

Cover, Vibora wins!

Winner: Vibora, by pinfall

The Luchasaurus defeats a former Lucha Underground Champion, and Kobra Moon helps him celebrate. But wait, the WWU return to SMACK them down with chairs! But that just brings Daga and Drago back! They take those chairs and use them on PJ and Taya. Ricky gets a SUPERKICK from Drago, then a hesitation dropkick from Daga. PJ SUPERKICKS Daga back, but then the brawl continues. Ricky gives the WWU numbers advantage but that’s still not enough to stop the fight. This war is far from over, which side will be left standing after the dust settles?

 

XO Lishus works out backstage.

He’s a maniac, maniac~… In his mind.

But Jack Evans is spying on him, still upset over the #PutUporShutUp defeat he suffered weeks ago. No one gets the better of him, no one! But then Ricky and Rosa the doll show up. What’s Jack doing? Spying on his enemy to learn everything about them. What’s Ricky doing? Recovering after getting his ass beat by the Reptiles. Jack should’ve been out there to help. Look, Ricky, Jack already said he doesn’t do snakes. Johnny was okay with it, so you and that “dirty ass doll” better mind your own business. Jack storms out, but Rosa says she doesn’t like Jack. Neither does Ricky. Maybe they should do to Jack what they did to Angelico. No, Ricky can’t. Johnny would be mad. But who’s in charge of Ricky’s life? Johnny? Or Ricky? Or perhaps, it’s Rosa…?

 

Lucha Underground Championship: Pentagon Dark VS Cage!

After The Machine attacked the Bone Collector and put him through a table, the champion got payback while giving Cage what he wants. Will Cage finally grab hold of the top Aztec gold? Or will Pentagon and his #CeroMiedo add the arm of a Machine to the collection?

Fans are already thunderous as they duel between the two luchadors. More Believers are on Pentagon’s side than Cage’s, but that doesn’t deter the challenger. Cage hits before the bell as he blasts Pentagon off the apron! The bell rings so now Cage’s assault is official. He throws big forearms then throws Pentagon into railing. Pentagon kicks back, but Cage forearms again. Cage throws Pentagon into more railing, then kicks him across the face. The Terminator drums start up and Cage throws Pentagon over the stair guard rails! Then he bounces Pentagon off the announce desk. Cage scoop slams Pentagon to the floor, then brings him up. Pentagon hits back with haymakers and kicks, then grabs a camera cable to choke Cage with it! The referee reprimands Pentagon, and Pentagon lets up on Cage to shout at the ref. Cage takes advantage and back suplexes Pentagon on the apron!

Pentagon slumps to the floor, but Cage drags him up again. Cage goes bowling for chairs with Pentagon! He throws Pentagon into railings again, then ties his mask to them! Cage fires off boots and forearms to hammer Pentagon into the steel. Fans chant “We Want Tables” and Cage goes looking. When he can’t find any, he takes Matt Striker’s chair! Cage brings the chair over to Pentagon and swings on him! Thankfully, Pentagon unties his mask and narrowly escapes! Pentagon SUPERKICKS Cage, then Slingblades Cage down! The Believers fire up with the champion, and “CERO MIEDO!” echoes out. Pentagon puts Cage in the ring for flying double stomps! Cover, ONE, and Pentagon is shocked. But Pentagon keeps his cool, he waits for Cage to stand to kick that leg. Pentagon then grabs Cage for the driver but Cage slips out to hit a jumping knee.

Cage grabs Pentagon now, pumphandle driver! But he isn’t done, as he drags Pentagon up again. Cage powerbomb lifts, buckle bomb! Pentagon rolls out but can’t get away. Cage deadlift SUPERPLEXES! Cover, TWO! Pentagon survives because Cage didn’t grab the legs. Believers duel as Cage slashes the throat. Cage drags Pentagon up in the fireman’s carry but Pentagon slips out for a backstabber! Cage goes to discus but Pentagon counters with a code breaker! Cover, TWO! Pentagon’s own ego allows Cage to survive. Pentagon climbs up but Cage grabs him onto his shoulders. Cage walks around with the electric chair, to throw Pentagon down with a facebuster. Cover, TWO! Cage keeps his cool, but Pentagon escapes the powerbomb with an enziguri! SUPERKICK added, and then a flying DESTROYER!

But Cage gets back up, so he gets another Destroyer!

Pentagon grabs Cage, Package Piledriver!! Cover, Pentagon wins!

Winner: Pentagon Dark; still Lucha Underground Champion

Neither man nor machine is enough to stop the darkness that fuels Pentagon. However, Cage gets a second win and swings on Pentagon! Pentagon ducks the discus, to smash Cage with the belt. He hears the Believers chant “Break his arm!” Pentagon makes sure to tell Cage that the title is his, before putting on the Dark Armbar! But wait, Cage powers out! Cage lifts Pentagon, to F5 him onto the belt! Fans boo and jeer, but Cage picks up the belt for his own. Cage tells Pentagon, “I already told you. You can’t break my arm, because I’m not a man… I’m a MACHINE!” Even so, Pentagon retained. Will Cage find a way to challenge Pentagon again? Or is it back of the line for this unbreakable behemoth?

 


 

My Thoughts:

Great stuff tonight for Lucha Underground, with plenty of surprises, too. I like the character change for Paul London after what he did last week, but it seems it was for naught with the debuting Impact Wrestling star, Desmond Xavier, winning over him. Desmond joins the Gift of the Gods match, and that battle royal was fast but very important. I was surprised to see just how strongly Face Son of Havoc is as he bites the bullet for The Mack. And then Mack makes a perfectly logical choice to keep Muertes out of this match. Muertes is incredibly strong, which he shows off by eliminating the majority of the field, so why wouldn’t another wrestler want to avoid him? Plus, Muertes still has his part to play in Catrina’s story, so he isn’t without something to do.

Mundo VS Vibora was great, and really gives us a look at what Vibora can do in the ring. However, with Taya, PJ, Ricky, Daga and Drago running in and out, it makes it clear that WWU has the numbers advantage though the Reptiles clearly have strength. The Reptiles still might have to recruit members to keep even with the WWU, because an Elimination Tag match could easily go the WWU’s way. Though, Jack uses his own reasons for not being involved, and it seems XO is going to be a personal rival of his. Ricky being revealed as the reason Angelico is gone this season is perfectly creepy for his new gimmick, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he was also used as to why other stars aren’t returning, such as Dante Fox.

The Lucha Underground Championship match went as expected, but I like that Cage keeps himself strong with that attack. Antonio Cueto might give Cage another chance separate from Gift of the Gods, and there’s still the issue of the Gauntlet of the Gods, too. There’s a lot that can happen for Pentagon and the Lucha Underground title, and unpredictability is always what’s best for pro-wrestling.

My Score: 8.5/10


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