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Mitchell’s WWE Elimination Chamber Live Report! (2/25/18)

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All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter.

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Kickoff Match: The Balor Club’s Good Brothers VS The Miztourage; Balor Club wins.
  • WWE Raw Women’s Championship Elimination Chamber match: Alexa Bliss VS Sasha Banks VS Bayley VS Mickie James VS Mandy Rose VS Sonya Deville; Alexa wins and retains the WWE Raw Women’s Championship.
  • WWE Raw Tag Team Championships: The Bar VS Titus Worldwide w/ Dana Brooke; The Bar wins and retains the WWE Raw Tag Team Championships.
  • Asuka VS Nia Jax; Asuka wins.
  • WOKEN Matt Hardy VS Bray Wyatt; Hardy wins.
  • Seven Man Men’s Elimination Chamber, WWE Universal Championship #1 Contenders Match: The Miz VS Seth Rollins VS Finn Balor VS John Cena VS Roman Reigns VS Braun Strowman VS Elias; Reigns wins and will challenge Brock Lesnar for the WWE Universal Championship at Wrestlemania 34.

PLAY BY PLAY

Paige joins the WWE Kickoff panel.

The Ring Leader of Absolution joins Renee Young, Booker T, David Otunga and Pete Rosenburg to support her compatriots in the historic first Women’s Elimination Chamber. She is upset she can’t join in, because she did make a major contribution to the Women’s (R)Evolution. HOwever, she has all the faith in the world for Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville. One way or another, absolution will have the Raw Women’s Championship. Is Paige not worried about their inexperience? No, because Paige taught Mandy & Sonya how to work together. Alexa Bliss isn’t actually friends with Mickie James, and Bayley’s friendship with Sasha Banks is breaking. But what if it comes down to just Absolution? Then they all win! And in the end, Paige prepared them for such a scenario, so Absolution makes history no matter what.

What is Paige’s opinion of Ronda Rousey and her effect on the Women’s Division? Well, the Women’s Division in WWE is much more strenuous, Paige wonders if Ronda can handle it. Paige knows the women are making history, like she did when she was WWE Diva’s Champion at only 21 years old. Can Paige’s faith in her proteges bring one of them to their first Women’s Championship?

 

Backstage interview with Sasha Banks & Bayley.

They’ve heard Paige’s words. How do they feel about the combined threat of Absolution? Paige can talk all she wants, but she’s not in the match. Mandy & Sonya are still too new and have a lot to learn. Lesson one: When the spotlight is on, Bank on the Boss. And if Absolution forces Bayley & Banks to work together, then who better than best friends? Then when Bayley wins the Raw Women’s Championship, she can go on to Wrestlemania again. Or, y’know, Banks could win. Either way, they’re not worried about these supposed alliances, like Mickie & Alexa Bliss. But speaking of, Mickie comes by to speak her part.

“Nobody is using me.” Mickie reminds them this isn’t her “first rodeo.” They don’t know everything. These two may be friends now, but when the title’s on the line, that friendship will be over “quicker than a hiccup.” Strong words from everyone, but who will be THE Raw Women’s Champion at the end of the night?

 

The Miz speaks.

“Tonight in the Elimination Chamber match, I’m in the number one position.” And he’s not happy about that at all. But when you’re the “Most Must-See Superstar”, you’re always number one! And tonight, Miz will prove he’s the Number One Superstar when he puts the Intercontinental Championship where it belongs: the main event of Wrestlemania! “And that is awesome.”

 

Bray Wyatt speaks.

No, wait, that’s WOKEN Matt Hardy! “As I stand within Abigail’s Room, I can sense my Sight Beyond Sight being clouded by her darkness.” It consumes his soul, but that is why he cannot allow her to spread her “Eternal Essence” any further. Hardy then returns to his WOKEN Space and says that the WOKEN Warriors’ Wrath shall cast Abigail back into the void. And then, Hardy will DELETE Wyatt!

 

Raw General Manager, Kurt Angle, joins the Social Media Lounge.

“How is your son doing?” Jason Jordan had his surgery and it was successful, but he will miss Wrestlemania. Angle is excited to see Jordan “better than ever.” “Who do you think is going to win the Chambers matches?” A tough questions, given who is in them and what’s on the line. The men, Angle chooses Braun Strowman and Seth Rollins as his favorites, especially with Rollins’ amazing performance from last Raw. But at the same time, never count out Cena. Speaking of Cena, is this his last chance at Wrestlemania? No, not at all. He may have his distractions, but Cena can get back to the title or the main event.

As for the women, Alexa might retain, but Absolution has the advantage in numbers while Mickie has experience. Bayley and Sasha are former champions, too, but Alexa should retain. Then who do you think matches up best against Brock Lesnar? Again, Strowman, Rollins or Reigns are at the top of their games and therefore have the best bet to beat Brock. Another question:

“How does Angle feel about Rousey signing with Raw over SmackDown?” Happy to have her, of course. She is one of the greatest female athletes and Angle is excited. Renee and the panel say good night to Angle so he can prepare for the show.

 

Kickoff Match: The Balor Club’s Good Brothers VS The Miztourage!

Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows are ready to beat up some NEEERDS in Bo Dallas and Curt Axel to also climb the Raw Tag Team Division ladder. Can Anderson & Gallows make this Elimination Chamber kick-off just Too Sweet?

The bell rings and we start with Axel and Anderson. The fans already chant “Too Sweet! Woop woop!” as they tie up. Axel gets the headlock, then slips to a toehold and facelock. Anderson gets to his feet but Axel switches to the headlock. Anderson powers out but Axel runs him over! Axel asks, “How ‘sweet’ was that?” while Anderson gets up. They tie up, Axel gets the waistlock and clubs Anderson in the back. He throws haymakers on the Machine Gun, then whips, but Anderson reverses. Anderson knocks Axel down with a calf kick, then brings him over to tag Gallows. Gallows kicks, scoops and slams Axel, then goes to work with body shots in a corner. He rocks Axel with an uppercut, then starts up a “NERD! NERD!” chant.

Another uppercut, then a tag to Anderson. Anderson punches but Axel elbows back. Axel tags in Bo and Bo mugs Anderson against the ropes. Bo mocks the fans before firing off on Anderson. He tags in Axel and together the Miztourage put Anderson in another corner. Axel stomps Anderson more, then whips him corner to corner, but Anderson reverses. Anderson runs into Axel’s boot but runs him over with a rally of lariats. He scares Bo off, dodges Axel then hits the jump kick. Bo tags in, and then shoves Anderson down off the top rope! The Miztourage takes over while we take a quick break.

Elimination Chamber returns, and the fans rally as Anderson fights back against Bo. Bo reels Anderson in for a lariat, then drops a quick knee. He tags in Axel, hits another knee drop, then Axel hits the neck snap. Cover, TWO, but Miztourage keeps focus. Axel drives a knee into Anderson’s back before going after him with an armlock chinbar. The fans rally again and Anderson gets to his feet. Anderson goes to fight out but Axel whips and dropkicks him down. Axel is very excited for his own move, then stomps Anderson on that bad arm. He drags Anderson over and tags to Bo. They stomp a mudhole into Anderson, then embrace the heat. Bo taunts Gallows but Anderson fights out! But numbers keep him down, Bo sits Anderson down to then drag him up for a back elbow. Bo keeps hold of Anderson’s arm to bring him back up for another back elbow. Axel says “All day!” and Bo says to finish. He brings Anderson in again, but Anderson counters with a back suplex! The fans rally, hot tag to Axel and Axel whips Anderson! Shotgun kick! Hot tag to Gallows! Bo tags back in but Gallows rallies. Gallows hits Bo with a corner splash, then the roundhouse! The fans fire up with Gallows as he hits a splash! Tag to Anderson, they focus on Bo. Axel slips in and stops the Boot o’ Doom, only to get rocked with a right. Bo goes after Anderson and feeds him to Axel’s knee! Axel takes out Gallows, Bo covers, TWO! The Miztourage were close to that steal, but no go. The fans chant “Too Sweet! Woop woop!” while Bo tags Axel. Axel climbs up but Anderson uses Bo to trip him up! Anderson then gives Bo the spinebuster! Tag to Gallows, Gallows YAKUZA Kicks Bo, then YAKUZA kicks Axel! Tag to Anderson, they lift Axel up, MAGIC KILLER!

The Club wins!

Backstage interview with The Revival.

Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder are “students of the game”, but are not able to share their opinions in present company. Dawson says “these kids” all have potential, but that’s a mockery of what tag team wrestling is. Dash agrees, but a win is a win. Who will move up into the title picture on the last stretch of the Road to Wrestlemania?

 

Paul Heyman joins the Kickoff Panel.

The Advocate for the Beast speaks on who he’s eyeing in the Seven Man Elimination Chamber. He is watching all of them, because they’re all main-event players. They step up for just an opportunity against Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania. The real main event is tomorrow night’s Raw, because Brock Lesnar will come face-to-face with the “survivor” of tonight’s Chamber match. Heyman’s more concerned about the man that will move on from a “defining moment” to a “self-preservation” situation within 24 hours. Heyman is confident in his client as always, but will he really have nothing to worry about given the selection of contenders?

 

The Road to Wrestlemania goes through The Chamber.

Seven men and six women will enter “the harshest of detours”. The stakes are at their highest as history is made. The Chamber will determine who will be worthy of the Grandest Stage of Them All. Who will win, who will lose, and who will survive!?

 

WWE Raw Women’s Championship Elimination Chamber match: Alexa Bliss VS Sasha Banks VS Bayley VS Mickie James VS Mandy Rose VS Sonya Deville!

History waits for no one, so why wait for history? This historic first-time-ever match will start the night! The Goddess must defend her title against the Huggable One, the Legit Boss, both Absolution’s Golden Creation and Gladiator, and even her “friend”, the six-time Women’s Champion! Who will come away from this Chamber with their ticket to Wrestlemania?

Luckily for Alexa, she starts in a pod, increasing her chances of winning. Of course, same goes for Sasha, Mickie and Absolution’s Mandy. Therefore, it is Sonya starting against Bayley!

 

The door shuts, the bell rings and we begin. Sonya and Bayley take a moment to understand what this means. They slowly circle while the fans cheer on Bayley. Bayley avoids Sonya’s grip, but Sonya still gets the waistlock and takedown. Sonya rolls Bayley around for a cover, ONE, but Sonya gets the headlock. Bayley counters to a cover, ONE, and the two stand back. The fans continue to cheer for Bayley but Sonya gets the waistlock again. Bayley gets the drop toehold counter, then runs to hit a bulldog! Sonya staggers but Bayley bumps her off a buckle. Bayley bumps Sonya off more buckles, but Sonya prevents the grand slam. Sonya throws Bayley and bumps her off buckles now, then whips her into a corner. Bayley goes up and over then runs, but into a stiff body shot from Sonya!
Sonya taunts Bayley as she stalks her to ropes. Bayley rolls under to the outside, but Sonya is upon her. Sonya grabs legs, and catapults Bayley into the steel chains!

But wait! Bayley used that to climb up! Sonya grabs at Bayley and brings her down, but Bayley slips down. Sonya keeps from being thrown into the chains, but so does Bayley. Bayley hits back, but they standing switch do-si-do, Bayley gets the last throw! Sonya hits the chains and drops down, and Bayley hurries to make the cover. TWO, but Bayley keeps on Sonya with a knee drop. She misses the elbow drop, and Sonya gets space. The two go to opposite corners, the fans cheer Bayley on. Sonya runs in but Bayley flapjacks her off the buckles. Bayley picks Sonya up, saido suplex. Cover, TWO, but Bayley keeps on Sonya. She drags Sonya towards a corner then climbs up. Bayley takes aim, but Sonya crawls away. That’s fine, Bayley just readjusts and jumps for the Macho Elbow!

Direct hit! Bayley puts Sonya in the ring to cover, TWO! The countdown begins, Bayley keeps Sonya down in a chinlock as a pod is chosen. The one to enter is: MANDY ROSE!

But Bayley is upon her already with the second rope hotshot! She keeps on Mandy by ramming her into chains, then she decks Sonya and hits another hotshot! Bayley throws Mandy into the ring and the fans are all behind her. She goes corner to corner for shoulder tackles to each. Back elbow for Sonya, then Bayley brings her out to whip into Mandy. Sandwich back elbow! Mandy dodges the second try, Sonya runs in but Bayley puts her on the outside. Bayley puts Mandy outside, too, and then chooses to keep on Mandy. Mandy rocks Bayley with a forearm, and Sonya comes out of nowhere with a SPEAR!

Absolution works together perfectly, and Bayley is gasping for air. They drag Bayley up and then slam her into the chains again and again. Mandy and Sonya mock Bayley’s best friend, Sasha, then kick Bayley into the ring. Sonya covers her, TWO! Mandy covers, ONE. Absolution isn’t frustrated, they just keep toying with Bayley. Sliding knee from Sonya, but Bayley still fights back. Sonya grabs Bayley, Mandy hits a flying knee! TWO, now there’s some frustration.
Sonya and Mandy knock Bayley around before going back outside and tying her up in the chains. They take turns hitting Bayley like a heavy bag, big kicks and swift body shots each. Bayley is stuck in a 2v1, and Absolution keeps toying and taunting. Bayley does her best to fight back but it’s still not in her favor. However, the countdown returns and next in is: Sasha Banks!

The numbers have just evened up now that The Boss is in! Sasha heads right over, taking care of Sonya. Mandy comes in but Sasha throws her right into the pod walls! Sasha furiously fires off on Mandy with haymakers and stomps. Sonya bails Mandy out and throws Sasha into chains. Sasha dodges and goes after Sonya now, running double knees into the chains! She then puts Sonya in the ring, low double knees! Cover, TWO! Sasha walks it off, then brings Sonya over to a corner. She fires off more forearms but Sonya gets a back elbow. Sonya sticks out a boot but Sasha blocks that to spin her sideways. Mandy returns to disrupt the Stock Drop but that just gets her pulled face-first into the buckle axel! Sasha goes back up and hits Stock Drop. Cover, TWO!
Sasha keeps her focus, then brings Sonya back up. Sonya yanks Sasha into buckles now! Roll up, TWO! Sasha gets space but Sonya is back upon her with shoulders in a corner. Sonya rocks Sasha with a stiff kick to the stomach. Bayley is back and rams Sonya into a post! Now the best friends go after Sonya together, double throw into the chains, and again! And then, double hip toss into the chains!

Bayley and Sasha put Sonya back in the ring but Mandy gets Bayley with a tackle! Mandy throws Sasha all the way in, then runs her over with a lariat. Mandy uses that strength, wheelbarrow facebuster! She doesn’t cover yet, she brings Sasha up. Double underhook, but Sasha slips out. Sasha dodges the knee, back stabber! Bank Statement crossface! Bayley intercepts Sonya, Mandy taps! Mandy is ELIMINATED!

No more 2v1 advantage for Absolution! Alexa smirks as Rose is forced to leave. However, we also get a countdown, and the next woman in is: Mickie James!

With the Six-Time champion Wonder Woman coming in, that means Alexa is safely last. That said, Mickie goes right at everyone, taking them all down! She fires up as she fires off forearms on Bayley, then ducks and kicks Sasha. Mickie runs and runs over both best friends before booting Sonya down. Bayley gets back up but Mickie kicks her again. Sasha rolls Mickie out of the DDT, but Mickie rolls that back, TWO. Bayley returns but Mickie quickly turns things into a neckbreaker! Sasha is up and rocks Mickie with a forearm. She runs but into the flapjack! Mickie kip-up and the fans are fired up.
Sonya returns to rock Mickie with a knee, then throws her into chains. Mickie blocks the second go and throws Sonya into chains now. SOnya keeps going and rams Mickie into the chains now! Mickie kicks Sonya away, then uses the chains for a Mick-canrana! With everyone else down, Mickie gets an idea: she goes up! Sasha tries to stop her but gets kicked down! Mickie keeps climbing, but Bayley pursues! Bayley tries to stop Mickie but Mickie hits her back. They fight hanging up from the chains, but Mickie bumps Bayley down, then kicks her completely off! Mickie makes it atop one of the pods! Everyone fires up with her, and she FLIES onto Sonya!!

Sonya is ELIMINATED! No more Absolution!

But Bayley gives Mickie no rest. She and Sasha go after Mickie, back stabber to Bayley2Belly!

Mickie is ELIMINATED!! Alexa has no ally now, and she’s just minutes away from being fed to two best friends. She’s very worried as she watches Mickie exit the Chamber. Bayley and Sasha are on the same page, they’re going to wait it out. They watch eagerly, and Alexa is afraid. But the countdown begins, and the moment of truth is upon us.

Her pod door opens, but Alexa tries to close it again! Sasha and Bayley force it open, Alexa goes out the other side. The chase is on as Alexa scrambles up and around! But unfortunately for her, there’s two of them. They’ve flanked her!

Alexa goes down the chains, but Sasha and Bayley pursue. So she goes back up! Alexa makes her way to the top of a pod, but this just makes her even more cornered! Sasha gets there first and clubs Alexa down, but then kicks Bayley down!

Remember: it’s every woman for herself. And this is the moment it truly begins. Sasha grins down at her gullible “friend”, but Alexa slips away. The Boss pursues the Goddess, who scurries back to her pod. Bayley returns and puts Sasha into a post! Alexa sucker punches Bayley! She puts Bayley in, covers, TWO! Alexa glares as she bounces Bayley off the mat, then hammers away with forearms. She drags Bayley up, then over to ropes. Alexa chokes Bayley on the bottom rope, then bounces her off the mat again before the skateboard stomps. Cover, TWO!

Alexa grows furious but Bayley revives, saido suplex! Bayley is back on Alexa with forearms and shoulders in a corner. She rolls back but Sasha returns to power Bayley to a corner! Sasha fires off forearms, but Bayley hip tosses Sasha into buckles and a Tree of Woe! Bayley stomps a mudhole into Sasha! Bayley climbs up but Alexa comes over and goes after them both! Alexa climbs up to focus on Bayley, SUPERPLEX!

Alexa and Bayley are down, Sasha sits up at the corner! She turns around and flies for the Frog Splash on Bayley!

TWO!! Sasha’s frustration is strong, because she hasn’t eliminated her “friend.” But the fans declare “This is Awesome!” Sasha puts Bayley in a corner, then hoists her into position. Stock Drop blocked, but then Sasha still pulls Bayley into buckles! Bayley rolls and Sasha hops back up. Bayley springs up, SUPER Bayley2Belly! Alexa rolls Bayley, Bayley is ELIMINATED!! Bayley again loses out on the championship because of the Five Foot Fury.

Cover on Sasha, TWO!! Alexa keeps on Sasha with furious right hands and stomps. With Sasha down, Alexa climbs up top. Alexa goes for Twisted Bliss, but Sasha’s knees come up! The Goddess writhes while The Boss stirs. Sasha pursues Alexa on the outside, but Alexa is right on her. Sasha blocks a kick, then knees Alexa again and again into the steel chains! Alexa dodges and Sasha’s leg gets caught! Alexa takes advantage with a draping backbreaker! Sasha is down, and Alexa catches her breath before looking up. Alexa climbs her way up to the top of a pod again. And just like Mickie before her, she takes aim and FLIES for a SUPER Twisted Bliss!

Sasha rolls her into Bank Statement! She rolls Alexa into the ring like this, but then they roll once too much and Alexa backs Sasha into a corner. Alexa breaks the hold thanks to buckles, then runs in, but into boots from Sasha. Sasha catches her breath and now Sasha decides to climb up high. However, Alexa messes her up and Sasha smacks into the pod. Then from the top rope, draping DDT! Alexa wins! She retains her Raw Women’s Championship in this inaugural Women’s Chamber match!

In-ring interview with Alexa Bliss.

Congratulations are in order for this history-making defense. Alexa says this victory means everything to her. The fans let her know, “You Deserve It!” Alexa thanks them, but admits that this isn’t just about her, it’s about “every little girl and woman at home who have ever dreamed big.” She dedicates her win to the women of the world. “This just proves you can be whatever you want to be. So dare to dream and dream big!” She apologizes for crying. Alexa sees her fans and true to her usual mean Goddess ways, says “none of you will accomplish any of your dreams.”

She proved that no one is on her level! “And you know what, the odds were clearly stacked up against me and I still won.” Everyone doubted Alexa, but she won. Alexa proved that she the One True Goddess of WWE. Will she continue her reign all the way to the end of Wrestlemania?

 

Kurt Angle brings the contract to Ronda Rousey’s room.

Later tonight, “Rowdy Ronda” will sign and officially join Raw. Will everything go smoothly for WWE’s newest addition?

 

Braun Strowman speaks.

“I’m chomping at the bit to get inside the Elimination Chamber.” The Monster Among Men vows that “these hands” are the only things he’ll need to win. “And then I’m stomping down the Road to Wrestlemania and making Brock Lesnar my pet Beasty Boy.” Will Strowman steamroll his way through six other men to then demolish Suplex City?

 

WWE Raw Tag Team Championships: The Bar VS Titus Worldwide w/ Dana Brooke!

Titus & Apollo have had the number of the Swiss Cyborg and Celtic Gladiator in non-title matches, but can they #MakeItaWin when it really matters?

The Bar doesn’t wait for the bell, they go after Titus & Apollo right away! They double whip but Apollo ducks and Titus Worldwide gets The Bar with double clotheslines. Titus throws Sheamus & Cesaro out, then Apollo climbs up to FLY!

Apollo puts Cesaro back into the ring, the bell rings, and now Titus goes after Cesaro with a scoop slam. Tag to Apollo, he climbs up again, and hits a splash! Sheamus breaks that, but Titus chases him out. Cesaro yanks Apollo out, then Sheamus with the cheap shot lariat. Dana protests but The Bar already did the damage. Tag to Sheamus and he goes after Apollo with European Uppercuts and clubbing forearms. Sheamus puts Apollo in the ring, then goes after him in the corner. Tag to Cesaro, they mudhole stomp Apollo down. The Bar embraces the heat but the fans rally for Apollo. Cesaro rocks him with a EuroUpper, then drags him back to a corner, TWO. Cesaro puts Apollo crews in a chinlock to keep him grounded.

Apollo endures the squeeze while Titus rallies the fans. Apollo gets to his feet and reaches, but Cesaro tags Sheamus. Sheamus kicks Apollo, then The Bar double whips and Bar Lariats Apollo down. The fans boo and jeer while Sheamus taunts Titus. Sheamus drops a knee, then covers, TWO.

Now Sheamus puts Apollo in a seated keylock, yanking and wrenching on it. The fans rally for Apollo again, and he works his way out of the hold. Apollo fights back with body shots, but Sheamus whips him to The Bar’s corner. Tag to Cesaro, and Cesaro taunts Titus again. Apollo fights out of the corner, but Cesaro keeps him away from Titus. Cesaro pushes Apollo back but Apollo pushes forward. The fans rally again, and Apollo tosses Cesaro! Cesaro tags Sheamus, and Sheamus stomps and knee drops Apollo down. Sheamus clubs away on Apollo before putting the keylock back on. The fans taunt Sheamus, “You Look Stupid!” Sheamus tells them to shut up, but the fans rally for Apollo once more. Apollo stands up, fights back, but Cesaro tags in. The Bar whips Apollo again, mule kick.

Cesaro wraps Apollo in a chinlock and brings him down. Dana takes notes while she cheers on Apollo. Titus rallies the fans once more, but Cesaro whips Apollo. Apollo side steps and sends Cesaro flying out! Cesaro returns to tag Sheamus, and Sheamus intercepts Apollo. Apollo powers his way forward, but Sheamus pushes him back. Sheamus reaches for Cesaro but Apollo powers his way towards Titus. He reaches, but Sheamus knees Apollo then knocks Titus down. With no one to tag, Apollo takes a shoulder, and Sheamus hauls him to The Bar’s corner. Apollo rolls Sheamus, TWO, so he heads for a corner. Sheamus runs in, but Apollo dodges and Sheamus hits post. Titus returns and Apollo crawls his way. Hot tags bring in Titus and Cesaro! The Gator rallies on The Bar! He throws Cesaro to a corner and chops away again and again! Titus throws Cesaro across the way!

The fans bark along with Titus, Titus runs in and hits a corner splash. He boots Sheamus away, then boots Cesaro down. Cover, TWO! Titus keeps his cool but Cesaro elbow shim away. Cesaro jumps but TItus catches him, to scoop him. Cesaro slips out and kicks out a leg. He runs but into a pop-up, only to slip out the back side. Sheamus tags in before TItus clotheslines Cesaro out, then Sheamus gets Titus with a hotshot. Titus staggers while Sheamus climbs up, flying- into the Clash of the Titus!

But Cesaro breaks the pin! He gets Sheamus out but Apollo returns. Apollo tags in, then builds speed to FLY again! The Bar goes down again, and Apollo puts Sheamus back in. Apollo climbs up once more, big flying crossbody! TWO, into Standing Moonsault, but Sheamus’ knees are in the way. TWO, and while Sheamus is frustrated, Cesaro takes Titus out at the post. Apollo springs up to enziguri Sheamus! Cesaro tags, and chop blocks Apollo! The Bar coordinates, springboard A-Swiss-ted White Noise!

The Bar wins! They finally get even with TItus Worldwide! Will Titus & Apollo ever get another chance? And who will The Bar face next in the near future?

 

The Brutal Beauty has a message for the Empress of Tomorrow.

They say “No one is ready for Asuka,” but is Asuka ready for Nia?

Asuka VS Nia Jax!

While the Empress may still be undefeated, the Irresistible Force has never been more motivated. If Nia can defeat the undefeated, Sole Survivor, and inaugural winner of the Women’s Rumble, Nia will find herself included in the Raw Women’s Championship match at Wrestlemania! Who is more prepared for victory tonight?!

The bell rings and they circle and tie up. Nia powers Asuka away but Asuka comes right back with a dropkick and strikes. Nia shoves her away again, Asuka comes back for a flying armbar but Nia just shoves her off again. Asuka rushes Nia once more but Nia grabs her around the throat. Asuka slips out and back elbows Nia. Nia headbutts Asuka but Asuka boots her. Asuka bumps Nia off buckles but Nia returns a bump back. Asuka won’t stop, even as Nia throws her down. Nia biels Asuka all the way to ropes, and for once, Asuka slows it down. Nia runs but Asuka dumps her out! Asuka runs, hip attack misses! Nia knees Asuka in the back, then reenters the ring to kick her while she’s down. Alexa watches backstage as Nia keeps on Asuka.

Nia stretches Asuka’s arms, then stomps her into the mat! The fans applaud the brutality as she drags Asuka up for a backbreaker. Nia then runs and squashes Asuka in a corner, before running for an elbow drop! She grins before covering, but TWO! Nia keeps her cool, she knows she’s in control. She toys with Asuka more, but Asuka feeds off it to fight back. Nia shoves her, Asuka rebounds and rolls into a kneebar attempt! But Nia simply pulls Asuka up and off to then ram her into buckles! Asuka is down but not giving up. Nia drags her up while the fans duel, and lifts Asuka in a torture rack. Asuka endures the bending, then elbows her way out! She comes back and grabs a guillotine hold on Nia! Nia powers up to power out, jackhammer style suplex!

No cover, but Asuka is definitely in a bad way. Nia drags her around but Asuka kicks back. Nia still gets Asuka up, but Asuka jawbreakers Nia away. Asuka kicks at Nia’s chest again and again, then runs, but into the Samoan Drop!

Still no cover, because Nia runs! Leg drop misses, Asuka hits a Shining Wizard! Cover, TWO! Both women are exhausted and sore, but they both get to their feet. Asuka kicks and back hands Nia, bringing her to a knee. Nia roars, so Asuka buzzsaws and kicks her again! TWO!! Asuka seems at a loss for what to do next, but she won’t let that slow her down. She gets up and goes to a corner to climb up top! Nia comes over and rocks her, the two fight as Nia heads up. Nia wants another drop but Asuka flails and slips out! Asuka tries but can’t sunset flip Nia, Nia fights her off. BANZAI!

But Asuka rolls out of the way! She hurries back up, kicks Nia back down, then runs again. Nia runs her over! The fans are loving this, and Nia runs for the senton, but only gets a grazing blow on the legs. Asuka doesn’t let that bother her, she gets herself to a corner and then side steps to send Nia into the post. Nia pulls herself out, but Asuka is waiting. Flying armbar takedown!

Nia endures but Asuka has her! Nia rolls into a deadlift! And she slams Asuka into the buckles! Asuka lets go, the fans are fired up for both of them. Nia returns to Asuka and drags her back up. Nia says this is for Wrestlemania, and she lifts Asuka in powerbomb style. Asuka twists and rolls Nia! Asuka wins!! She stays undefeated, and even denies Nia her Wrestlemania Moment.

This also worries The Goddess.

As difficult as it was for Asuka to defeat Nia, Alexa is no Irresistible Force. Does the Goddess have a chance if the Empress chooses her belt? However, Nia attacks Asuka from behind! She then throws Asuka out of the ring, follows her out, and easily endures Asuka’s counter attacks. She pushes Asuka into a post, then barrels her into the timekeeper’s area!

Nia pulls herself out of the rubble, and Alexa is no longer worried. She watches her best buddy walk to the back while Asuka is out cold. Renee Young comes in to ask Alexa what she thinks of what she just saw. She knows Nia is upset she lost, but Alexa is not upset with what she just saw. With only a few weeks left, it’s clear “No one is ready for ALEXA.” Will the Empress be in any shape to prove those words wrong?

 

Backstage interview with Roman Reigns.

The Big Dog responds to Paul Heyman’s claims that Brock Lesnar will remain Universal Champion regardless of who challenges him by saying he doesn’t care if Heyman thinks that. Heyman shows up just ten days a year with Lesnar, running his mouth about what someone else can do. Roman is the opposite of that, because he backs everything he says. Heyman better listen to Roman’s own “spoiler alert”: Roman is going to Wrestlemania, beating Lesnar, and taking the Universal Title for his own. Will Roman’s confidence carry him through six other main-event caliber superstars on this Road to Wrestlemania?

 

WOKEN Matt Hardy VS Bray Wyatt!

After the mortal vessel known as Matthew Hardy had a mental breakdown, he was inhabited by the eternal WOKEN Wisdom! And now, he goes after “The Consumer of Terrestrial Entities”, Hardy has the power to DELETE! Will he rid the world of Bray’s darkness? Or will this next battle in the Great War go in the favor of the New Face of Fear?

Wait, where did Hardy go? Wyatt has appeared but Hardy is nowhere to be seen. Hardy laughs from some unseen location. “Bray Wyatt, you’ll fade away and classify yourself as OBSOLETE!” Hardy sings that over and over but Bray grows frustrated. He searches high and low for Hardy, but can’t find him. “Tonight, we DELETE DELETE DELETE!” Wait, is he under the ring? Nope. Hardy finally reappears and attacks! He bumps Bray off the apron, but Bray shoves him away. They both enter the ring, the bell rings and now the match starts.

Hardy haymakers and goes for the Twist but Bray shoves him away. Bray runs but into Hardy’s boot. Hardy hits the leg sweep then laughs as he rocks Wyatt with another set of haymakers. He whips Bray but Bray reverses. Bray runs in but misses, spider-lean gets a “WONDERFUL” round of applause from the WOKEN Warriors.

The applause only irritates Bray, but he runs into a kick. Bray blocks the Twist but not the DDT! Cover, TWO.
Hardy begins the “DELETE!” chants and kicks again, but still no Twist. Bray shoves him then runs him over with the body check! Now Bray is finally in a good mood as he stalks Hardy to ropes. He chokes and clubs Hardy, then throws hands in a corner. Bray laughs as he grinds a forearm into Hardy’s face. Hardy gets to another corner, then kicks back before throwing more hands. Bray knees low and DDT’s Hardy, cover, TWO.

Bray wraps a chinlock on Hardy, but the fans rally for the WOKEN Wisdom. He grinds Hardy to the mat, but Hardy fights back. Hardy sits up and works his way out of the hold, then to his feet. He fights out but Bray throws him to ropes for a running headbutt. Hardy gets to the apron but Bray follows. Bray walks over but Hardy hits back with more haymakers. Hardy backs Bray down, but then Bray kicks low and clubs Hardy to slam him into the apron!

Hardy tumbles down and the fans boo but Bray doesn’t care. Bray goes back into the ring to leave Hardy to the ring count. Hardy drags himself to steel steps as the count climbs, so Bray changes his mind. He hits Hardy with an uppercut that sits him on the steps, then brings Hardy up again. Bray wants the yurinagi, but Hardy fights out! Hardy chases Bray but Bray clobbers him with the turn-around lariat! Bray goes to a table but then trolls the fans by putting Hardy in the ring. Cover, TWO. Bray keeps on Hardy with stomps, then haymakers. Hardy keeps laughing, even as Bray chokes him on the ropes. Bray stalks Hardy to a corner, then reels him out for a lariat. He drags Hardy up to put him in a corner. Bray embraces the boos and jeers before running corner to corner. Hardy boots Bray back, then hits a tornado DDT!

Both men are down, but Hardy is stirring. He gets to his feet and fires off haymakers on Bray. He gives “DELETE DELETE” buckle bumps! Hardy hits the clothesline but not the bulldog, so he gets a Side Effect instead! TWO, but Hardy doesn’t slow down. He climbs up and the fans come to life. Hardy takes aim and drops the elbow on Bray’s head. The fans chant “DELETE! DELETE!” but Bray still denies the Twist to hit the Yurinagi and back senton! Cover, TWO! Bray is shocked and frustrated with Hardy, so he hammers forearms into Hardy’s head. He drags Hardy around to a corner, then climbs up. Bray jumps, but Hardy avoids the back senton!

Hardy comes back over, Bray denies the Twist again. Bray splashes Hardy in the corner from behind, then brings him into Sister Abigail position. Hardy fights out, so Bray pushes him away. Hardy ducks the punch and finally hits the Twist of Fate! WOKEN Hardy wins! The Great War is now 1-1, who will win the WONDERFUL~ tiebreaker?

 

Kurt Angle comes out, contract in hand.

That’s because it is finally time for the highly anticipated contract signing. But not only is he here to preside over it, so are the COO and Principle Owner, Triple H and Stephanie McMahon!

These three powerful figures in the Raw Administration are here because the talent they’re about to sign is that important and that touted in Women’s Sports, as well as around the world. “Ladies and gentlemen,” Stephanie says to the Las Vegas WWE Universe, “we are all about to be part of history.” They’re signing one of the greatest athletes in the world today. They wanted the greatest athletes, the elites, to take WWE to the next level. The WWE wants men and women “worthy of your passion.” And HHH can’t think of a bigger recruit since the Olympic Gold Medalist. This judo champion turned Olympic medalist turned innovator of MMA, “she has paved the way for young women athletes all around the globe”, and has earned the title of “the baddest woman on the planet.” It is none other than… RONDA ROUSEY!

Rowdy Ronda gets a standing ovation from Vegas as she enters the ring. Stephanie welcomes Ronda to the WWE, then lets the fans have what they want. Ronda speaks, saying “It’s hard to even know what to say. I’m not often speechless, but to be in the ring with you guys, especially Kurt”, Ronda appreciates the magnitude of his accomplishments. The fans chant non-stop for Ronda, and she soaks it all in. She’s almost brought to tears, but she manages to give a shout out to the late-great Roddy Piper. He is the main reason why she’s here in the WWE at all, she hopes to make the original Rowdy One proud. That, and she wants to earn the WWE Universe’s respect. HHH wants this to be clear: Rousey didn’t want special treatment. No perks, no travel fare, no private cars. Rousey admits it, she wants to be treated like any other superstar. The only thing is an invite to Wrestlemania, and this contract will give her her own match!

Not for a title, however, but in a big match. She knows, she doesn’t want to be treated special, she wants to earn things. And she appreciates him doing this. Stephanie gives Rousey the contract, but then Rousey notices something with Kurt and HHH. Kurt is just “in awe” of the brilliant HHH & Steph. They’ve been talking about this for so long, they wanetd Ronda here to “manipulate” her for what she did back at WM31! That’s why there’s no special treatment. In fact, HHH said “three years in the making and now we own the bi-” Whoa, Angle, stop right there! This is not about any of them, it’s about Ronda. Tonight is about a dream come true! That’s what, and Angle is just under the weather. Stephanie can finalize this while HHH gets Angle out of here. Right, the flu, it’s so bad this year. But Angle had a point about one thing: the WWE management has been talking about her ever since WM31. Rousey embarrassed them, sure, but she impressed them, too. She is one of the greatest in the world, and that’s why WWE wants this deal to make her a superstar! But Angle manages to say “one last thing”: Steph said Rousey was a “has-been” and that even Steph could take her.

Uh oh! Rousey glares at Steph, Steph tries to explain. HHH returns, and manages to back Rousey off his wife. But Rousey steps up to HHH! He tries to defuse the situation, while Stephanie tries to escape. They both go to leave, but Rousey still stares daggers. The fans boo while HHH goes back to handle this. Rousey puts him through the table!

Stephanie is in shock but the fans are loving it! Now Stephanie gets mad, and SLAPS Rousey! The fans know that Stephanie, “You F**k’d up!” Rousey glares and Stephanie runs away. The fans boo, but then Rousey takes that contract, and signs it anyway! Rousey is officially signed to Raw, but what are the consequences for this intense encounter?!

 

“Ladies and Gentlemen: Elias.”

The Drifter gives us his performance from inside the Elimination Chamber. And as always, he asks, “Who wants to walk with Elias?!” This is a bit strange to perform inside the chamber, but this is Vegas, after all. Vegas must be familiar with seeing someone they love behind bars. But tonight is Elias’ night, and he’s on his way to his greatest performance on The Grandest Stage of Them All. Elias vows to beat Brock Lesnar for the Universal Championship, and then the world will know WWE truly stands for Walk With Elias! Now, as the last person to enter, he can sit back and watch “as these animals tear each other apart” to then feast on the scraps. He’ll kick things off with a song, but it’s not for Vegas. No, his songs aren’t for those dedicated to sin. Elias holds himself to a higher standard, so this song is for himself. So please, silence phones, hold applause and shut mouths while he begins.

“Every man will enter, only one will win.” But Elias can tell you for sure, “it ain’t gonna be Finn.” The fans boo and jeer, forcing Elias to stop. After all he does for them, the least they can do is shut up and listen! But they don’t, so Elias decides to go sit in his pod. The fans like the sound of that. Elias hit the right pitch, though, so he’ll keep going. “Miz is delusional. He should stick to Miz TV. He’s more like a D-List celeb, not a legend like me.” Elias beat John Cena and Roman doesn’t want him again. He ain’t afraid of nothing, not even the Monster Among Men. But speaking of, BRAUN appears! Elias goes to his pod after all, staying safe from Strowman, for now.

Seven Man Men’s Elimination Chamber, WWE Universal Championship #1 Contenders Match: The Miz VS Seth Rollins VS Finn Balor VS John Cena VS Roman Reigns VS Braun Strowman VS Elias!

 

The biggest Chamber match ever, for one of the biggest opportunities ever! We know the A-Lister must start and The Drifter earned the right to enter last, but who will it be standing tall at the very end of this history-making madness?

Luckily for The Miz, Strowman won’t start first, and neither will Cena or Roman.

Therefore, the starting three are The Miz, the Extraordinary Man and the Architect.

The bell rings and our opening triple threat situation begins. All three men are wary of the other two, but that gives Miz an idea. He wants to coordinate with Rollins to go after Finn. Finn grins, he knows Rollins isn’t going for that. The three circle, but now Miz tries to get Finn to side with him. He even puts up a Too Sweet!

Again, no deal. Instead, Rollins and Finn side with each other to go after Miz! They both kick him and whip him, then give Miz back elbows. Finn throws Miz out, Rollins rolls Finn up, TWO. The deal wasn’t long-lived, but that doesn’t seem to bother Finn. He and Rollins circle, another throwback to the inaugural Universal Championship match. Finn gets the headlock takeover, Rollins the headscissors, and they’re at a stalemate again. The fans already love this as the two circle and tie up again. Finn gets another headlock but Rollins powers out.

Miz stands back up but Finn blasts him from the ropes and into the steel chains. Rollins kicks Finn and gets the headlock takeover now. The fans rally while Finn gets to his feet and the other men wait in their pods. Finn powers out, things speed up, Rollins takes his turn blasting Miz to chains. Rollins elbows Finn away but Finn pushes to speed things up again. Finn drops Rollins with a dropkick! Miz returns and gets Finn back. Miz slingshots for the sunset but Finn rolls through to dropkick him back. Cover, TWO!

Finn changes targets to Rollins, giving him a stiff chop in a corner. Then he puts Miz in a corner for a chop. Miz reverses the corner to corner whip, down to direction, but Finn goes up and over. Finn runs in at Rollins for a running chop! Miz runs in but both Finn and Rollins get clear, sending that A-List clothesline into buckles. Finn returns to Rollins, snapmare and kick, then cover, TWO. He whips Rollins but Rollins reverses, kitchen sink knee sits Finn down. Cover, TWO, but Rollins keeps his cool. He brings Finn up, suplex but Finn slips out to roll up, TWO. Miz rolls Finn, TWO, Rollins rolls Miz, TWO, and Finn rocks them both with forearms. Rollins gets around for a cradling backbreaker on Finn! He runs at Miz but Miz puts him on the outside. Rollins punches Miz away, then springboards for the flying clothesline! Rollins keeps going, suplex roll through to Falcon Arrow!

Cover, TWO! Rollins keeps his cool as he stalks Miz. Miz gets up, Rollins mule kicks him down, then runs. Miz dodges the stomp but Rollins denies the Finale. Rollins boots Miz from a corner but Finn returns. Rollins boots him back, then hops up. He takes aim, and hits a DOUBLE Blockbuster!

Cover on Finn, TWO! Cover on Miz, TWO! The countdown hits, and the next man to enter is: JOHN CENA! The 16 Time World Champion gets face to face with Rollins, and the fans already duel.

Cena and Rollins jaw back and forth, Rollins shoves Cena away. Cena laughs it off, and shoves back. Rollins swings, Cena starts rallying with those shoulder tackles. Rollins escapes the spin-out but Cena dodges the Revolution Knee. Cena hits that spin-out bomb, and everyone knows what comes next. “You Can’t See Me!” But Cena sees that kick coming, so he uses it to roll Rollins up to his feet, another spin-out powerbomb! Miz comes in, he gets a spin-out, and now Cena has two men to tell, “You Can’t See Me!” He hits a TEN Knuckle Shuffle!

Finn returns, trips Cena and hits a double stomp! Cover, TWO! But Miz is on Finn with the full nelson! Finn reverses with a victory roll, TWO! Slingblade! Finn waits for Miz to stand up, but Rollins intercepts with a SUPERKICK! Rollins sees all three other men down, and he gets going. First he forearms Finn, then Miz, then back to Finn, but Cena comes in and sandwiches Rollins and Finn. Cena hoists both men up in the fireman’s carry! Finn slips down off the top but Cena uses Rollins’ feet to smack him away. Cena then throws Rollins, but Rollins lands on his feet and hits Cena with the Pele! Miz goes after Rollins, A-Lister combo, cover, TWO!

Strowman and Roman patiently wait while they watch the other four battle. Miz stands up and goes over to Rollins while Cean throws Finn right out. Everyone is outside the ropes, and while Rollins blocks from being thrown into chains, Finn knocks Cena down! Finn stomps away while Rollins throws Miz into chains. The fans duel while Finn flexes, but Cena revives and rocks him with a right.

Meanwhile, Miz and Rollins have reentered the ring. Miz reverses a whip to send Rollins into a corner, then hits his A-List clothesline. Cena brings Finn up to the top rope on the other side while Miz climbs up top. Rollins trips up Miz while Finn fights back against Cena. Cena powers through while Rollins brings Miz up all the way, echoing SUPERPLEXES!

All four men are down with no covers, and the countdown returns. With Elias not in the running, the next man to enter is: ROMAN REIGNS! The Big Dog makes his way in and gives out uppercuts to Finn, Miz and Cena. Cena flounders, so Roman hits him again. Miz slowly stands up, Roman gives him another uppercut. Finn stands up, Roman gives him a second uppercut. Rollins stands up, and the Shield Brothers come face to face.

There are no alliances in the Chamber, not that one had time to form with Miz pushing Roman into Rollins! Miz then goes after Roman with a boot, and Rollins with a low DDT! Cover, TWO! Cena comes up but Miz kicks him back down, and Miz sees he has all four other superstars where he wants them. The fans chant “YES! YES!” and Miz checks with them. Hit Cena? “YES!” Hit Roman? “YES!” And even Finn and Rollins? Well, no, but they know Miz is going to. So Miz takes that as his cue to use the “It Kicks”!

When the others go down, Miz ends up focusing on Roman with kick after kick after kick! The fans fire up as he prepares for the buzzsaw, but Roman evades to rally back with clotheslines! Roman glares but Finn clobbers him and unleashes strikes in a corner. Rollins goes after Finn but Finn throws him out hard, only to turn around into Roman’s flying clothesline! Cover, TWO!

Roman keeps his focus as he stalks Finn into a corner. He gives Finn the close-range clotheslines in the corner, and gets all 10. Roman throws Finn out but Finn evades the boot to get the waistlock. Roman gets the standing switch and roll up, TWO, into a deadlift powerbomb! Cena returns, but Roman gives him a Samoan Drop. Cover, TWO. Miz returns but Roman blocks the kick to powerbomb Miz! TWO, and Roman can’t believe it. He looks for who else is around, and he has his pick. The fans know it’s only a matter of time before the Monster Among Men is released, and they chant “Get These Hands!” Roman hears that and says Strowman should be worried about his hand. As such, Roman locks and loads and aims at Finn, but the countdown begins! The Monster is released!

Strowman picks up Rollins and throws him into the chains. Roman comes over but gets clobbered with a solid right. Strowman rocks Finn, then Cena, and then Miz just retreats. Cena gets back up but knocked back down. Roman returns but Strowman drops him with a headbutt. Strowman also headbutts Finn, but then ends up with both Cena and Rollins. They go 2v1 against him with clubbing forearms and body shots, but Strowman stays on his feet. Rollins and Cena prepare a double suplex, but it’s Strowman who suplexes them!

Finn gets up but Strowman grabs him and pushes him to ropes. Strowman catches Finn’s crossbody, and uses Finn to knock Roman down! Once again, Miz is the only one left. Miz wants nothing to do with Strowman so he climbs up to the top of a pod. Strowman pursues! He grabs Miz by the hair and brings him back over, to then dribble his head off the glass! Then, Strowman THROWS Miz at the others!!

Everyone topples down like bowling pins, and Strowman roars victoriously. He also surveys the scene, like the king of the mountain looking down on everyone else.

The fans are thunderous for Strowman, even as Strowman climbs down to join the fallen on the ground. He has his pick of the bunch, but he wants to have Elias. Elias taunts Strowman, he doesn’t have to be part of this any time soon. Strowman stomps Miz and then clubs him down into the mat. He then brings his familiar foe, Roman, up to club him down. Strowman glares at Elias again, but Rollins attacks Strowman from behind. Strowman puts Rollins out with a loud right hand! He brings Rollins up again, to lift and throw at the wall! Rollins crash lands, and Strowman brings up Miz for the Monster Slam! Miz is ELIMINATED!

One down, five to go. At least Miz still has his title, wife, and a child on the way. Speaking of on the way, that countdown returns, and we all know who has to enter the match now! Ladies and gentlemen: ELIAS! The Drifter is as ready as he’ll ever be, which isn’t enough yet. He follows Alexa Bliss’ example and closes his pod door again. Elias is safe inside his pod, right? As for Strowman, the other four unite to go 4v1 against him! Cena, Rollins, Roman and Finn throw furious haymakers and body shots, and they bring Strowman down to his knees! The four then coordinate something: they have two Shield Brothers in, but there’s nothing keeping Cena and Finn from subbing in. Rollins and Finn bring Strowman up for Cena and Roman to hold, and hit a hybrid Shield Bomb!

All four men cover, but TWO all the same!

Cena goes back at Strowman, fireman’s carry, and hits a MONSTROUS Attitude Adjustment! TWO! SPEAR! Cover, TWO!? Rollins is up, he gets running, CURB STOMP! Strowman escapes that cover, but Finn is already perched on the top rope. COUP DE GRACE! But then Cena hits Roman with an AA! Rollins mule kicks Cena! Finn tries but Rollins denies him and whips him, they double crossbody into each other!

And with all five men down, including the Monster, Elias pounces! He covers Rollins! TWO. Finn? TWO! Roman? TWO! Cena?! TWO! Elias did not get a single elimination there. Finn gets up but Elias knocks him down. Elias hammers and stomps Roman, tears off his shirt before giving Rollins a knee. He goes to Cena, whips him to ropes, then knocks him down with a jumping knee. Elias then hurries up top and takes aim, Macho Elbow on Rollins! TWO!

The Drifter grows frustrated, but he still has his pick of the litter. He stalks Rollins to the ropes and brings him up. Elias shovels Rollins onto his shoulders, but Roman returns. Rollins slips down and Roman gets Elias in the fireman’s carry. Elias fights out and now shovels Roman up onto his shoulders. He spins Roman for the sit-out powerbomb! TWO, and Elias is further frustrated. Strowman has returned! He throws Elias to a corner, but Elias evades and sends Strowman into the post. Elias tries to shovel Strowman up but that’s too much monster. Strowman scoops and slams Elias! Elias is ELIMINATED!

The first man and the last man to enter are both the first two out. Strowman isn’t through yet, as he drags Roman up. He scoops Roman, but Rollins flies in with a knee! Finn blasts Strowman with a dropkick, then Roman adds a leaping lariat! Strowman stays standing, but Cena flies in from the top rope! Strowman catches Cena, and hits another Monster Slam! Cena is ELIMINATED!

The Monster Among Men has eliminated half the opposition by himself! Rollins, Finn and Roman all seem surprised that, of all people to be eliminated, it was Cena. Strowman looks at all of them in turn, and shouts, “WHO WANTS THESE HANDS?!” Roman stands up, and gets an uppercut! Rollins runs in, he gets an uppercut. Finn stands up and circles with Strowman, and he gives Strowman strikes first! But Strowman grabs him and pushes Finn to a corner. Finn boots Strowman away, then again, before slipping to the outside and swing kicking. Finn climbs up but Strowman brings him down, then scoops him up. But Finn slips out and dropkicks Strowman into a corner! Strowman staggers, so Finn blasts him with another dropkick. Strowman falls to a knee and Finn hurries to the top rope, Coup De Grace to the head! Cover, TWO!

Rollins gets Finn but Finn denies the Revolution. Finn fires off strikes but Rollins ducks to Pele, Finn Peles right back! Dragon sleeper, 1916!

TWO! The fans cheer for Finn but Roman is up and throws Finn to ropes. Finn dodges then hits Slingblade! He blasts Roman with a dropkick then climbs up again. Coup De Grace hits, but Strowman is back to slam Finn down! Finn is ELIMINATED!

Now it’s just Strowman and The Shield Brothers. Rollins and Roman regroup, and they stand up against Strowman. They flank him, then attack 2v1. Strowman pushes Roman away, then Rollins. He runs at Rollins but Rollins dumps him out to the outside. Rollins stomps away on Strowman, then Roman comes over to add hammering fists. The Shield boys bump Strowman off the steel chains, and again, bringing him back down. Then Rollins turns on Roman! Springboard clothesline, then a mule kick. Rollins runs but Roman dodges the Curb Stomp. He jumps for the Superman Punch but Rollins kicks that out of the air. Rollins grabs Roman and lifts him to hit a Buckle Bomb, but then SUPERMAN PUNCH on the rebound!

The Shield Brothers are both down, and Strowman starts stirring. Strowman stands up and makes his way back to the ring. He grabs Rollins first, scooping him out. Rollins grabs the chains and climbs away, kicking Strowman off him. Strowman grabs at him, but he keeps fighting. Rollins reaches a pod and keeps kicking, but now Roman returns. Roman grabs Strowman, fireman’s carry to Samoan Drop on the floor! Strowman rolls away into the ring, Rollins sees him. Rollins prepares himself, looking at the Wrestlemania sign for motivation. He takes aim and flies for a SUPER Frog Splash!

TWO!! The Monster will not die! In fact, Strowman is still able to move, rolling away from Rollins. Rollins stirs and Roman returns, but Strowman also stands up again. The Shield Brothers get back on the same page and bring Strowman up. Roman lets out the howl but Strowman fights them off! He punches Rollins then dropkicks Roman! Roman flies out of the ring, but Rollins SUPERKICKS Strowman! Strowman stays on his feet, so Rollins SUPERKICKS again. Strowman falls to a knee, Rollins runs, but into a powerslam! Rollins is ELIMINATED!

Every elimination has been by the Monster Among Men, and now it’s just him and The Big Dog. Both men are familiar with The Beast of Suplex City, as well as each other, but only one can go to Wrestlemania for a rematch with him. Strowman waits for Roman while Rollins exits the Chamber. He eggs Roman on with “Come get these hands, boy!” Roman stands up as the fans chant “Get These Hands!” He walks up to the Monster, then throws uppercuts! Strowman grabs Roman and pushes him all the way out of the ring. Roman climbs up to his feet but Strowman is there waiting. Strowman scoops Roman but Roman flails and slips down to hotshot Strowman’s back! Roman runs, then FLIES!

He knocks Strowman into the chains, but keeps going with right hands. Strowman shoves him away, then runs at him, but Roman evades and Strowman crashes into and breaks a pod! Strowman still gets back up, but Roman is right on him with a SUPERMAN PUNCH! The Big Dog follows the Monster back into the ring, reloads, and hits another SUPERMAN PUNCH! That’s not enough, so Roman lets out the howl. He runs in, but the Spear is scooped! He slips out and boots Strowman away, runs again, but Strowman lifts him up, SUPERMAN PUNCH! Strowman stays standing after three of those, but Roman runs in and finally hits the SPEAR! Strowman gets up again, though, so another SPEAR! Cover, Roman wins! Roman wins the right to challenge The Beast!

After waiting three years, The Big Dog finally gets at Lesnar 1v1 for a championship once again. Just looking up at the sign, Roman can practically see himself winning the Universal Championship.

But Strowman’s not finished with Roman yet!

He stands up and grabs Roman, to give him the Monster Slam!

But it doesn’t end there. The fans want “One More Time!” so Strowman obliges. He drags up the limp Roman, scoops him again, and slams him again. Strowman keeps going, dragging Roman to the outside, and throwing him through a pod!!

Strowman roars victoriously, even though he did not win. Roman may have a match with Lesnar at Wrestlemania, but he’ll have a face-to-face with Lesnar. Though, is he even okay to make it to Monday Night Raw?

 

My Thoughts:

This Raw exclusive Elimination Chamber will be thought back on both a good and a bad Chamber PPV. The kickoff tag match was decent but mostly filler, and The Revival didn’t even get to finish their thought about The Good Brothers, so that was kinda bad. Opening with the inaugural Women’s Chamber, which was amazing, is good. Alexa retains because the “best friends” stopped being friends, but also by being last. That way she doesn’t look too strong, but it helps keep things as planned, aka potentially facing Asuka. And speaking of Asuka, her match with Nia Jax was also spectacular, and it’s great for both that it was such a tough win. Nia looks so powerful, but Asuka looks that much tougher, and then Nia wrecking Asuka after was great because everyone loves carnage. Alexa might be getting overconfident, though, thinking Asuka won’t be ready in time for ‘Mania, but it all fits her character so that’s fine.

The Raw Tag Team Championship was a fine match, but how great would it have been if Titus Worldwide got a #TitleForTitus? The Bar retains to basically make those wins look like flukes, but now there’s a traffic jam for contenders headed towards Wrestlemania again. Perhaps two years in a row, we’ll have Raw Tag Team Championship Ladder matches to make sure the most teams possible get in on the moment. WOKEN VS Wyatt 2 did NOT go the way anyone thought, both for WWE or for the fans. I’m sure by now fans were hoping for some BROKEN Universe style pre-taped moments but we got none. The match was still good given Hardy trolling Wyatt, and Hardy gets the win to keep even, so as a feud, it’s still okay. But because of the lack of true BROKEN action, the fans lost interest, which doesn’t help the WWE any. The WWE can redeem this feud with a Wyatt Compound/House Hardy estate type build towards ‘Mania, but if there’s not even one week of that, WWE will have screwed up the easiest slam dunk ever.

The Rousey contract signing went exactly how it should have to endear the fans to her and set up her Wrestlemania match with HHH & Stephanie. Angle speaks his mind to expose the scheming of “The Authority”, and when HHH & Stephanie fail to fool Rousey, she gives us that Biggest Badass Rousey everyone remembers fondly. Assuming Angle is going to be her partner for ‘Mania, that is gonna be a fun match! And then the Men’s Elimination Match was fun, even with the ending, but that is the one sour point fans will probably come away with. It went so well that there were no eliminations until Strowman comes in, and then Strowman gets all of them except the end. Strowman becomes the most powerful full-time star the WWE has, but because of Vince McMahon, Roman finds a way. The Monster does 90% of the work but Roman still wins. At least Strowman got to decimate Roman after, but this is the Nth time WWE doesn’t accept what fans are clamoring for. Perhaps there will be a way around this with Strowman still having the power to do that post-match stuff, and maybe he’ll show up to the already announced encounter of Roman and Lesnar.

My Score: 8.5/10

 


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Coverage

Mitchell’s WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament, First Round Marathon!

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Before the Network specials June 25th and 26th, the WWE brings us the ENTIRE first round in one single stream! Sixteen great talents from both the United Kingdom and around the world compete to move on in just the second ever UK Championship Tournament! Will your bracket be busted right out of the starting gate?

 

All images courtesy of the WWE’s official social media sources

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Drew Gulak VS Jack Gallagher; Gallagher wins and advances to the second round.
  • Ligero VS Travis Banks; Banks wins and advances to the second round.
  • Dave Mastiff VS Kenny Williams; Mastiff wins and advances to the second round.
  • Flash Morgan Webster VS James Drake; Webster wins and advances to the second round.
  • Zack Gibson VS Amir Jordan; Gibson wins and advances to the second round.
  • Ashton Smith VS Joseph Conners; Ashton wins and advances to the second round.
  • Tyson T-Bone VS Jordan Devlin; Devlin wins and advances to the second round.
  • Tucker VS Joe Coffey; Coffey wins and advances to the second round.

PLAY BY PLAY

The second WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament begins!

Who do you have winning your WWE UKCT 2018 Bracket?

Many faces return from the inaugural tournament, while many others are participating for the first time. The winner of this tournament will be awarded a championship match against Pete Dunne, who is only the second-ever yet longest reigning champion in the title’s short history. Will a returning star or a new one be the next to challenge The British Bruiserweight?

 

Drew Gulak VS Jack Gallagher!

This second edition of the WWE UKCT starts with two great grappling gentlemen from both sides of the pond. The Philly Stretcher and The Extraordinary Gentleman have become friends via WWE’s 205 Live, but they will put friendship aside if it means a chance at Pete Dunne’s title.

The bell rings and the two gentlemen shake hands. Fans applaud for that as the two circle and tie up. Gulak gets a facelock and puts Gallagher against ropes, but honors the break. They tie up again, and Gulak gets another facelock, but it’s Gallagher who puts Gulak against ropes. Gallagher honors the break, and then they circle. They tie up again, and go around the ring. Gulak gets the headlock, and he grinds Gallagher down to a knee. He brings Gallagher around and around to cover, ONE and Gallagher gets a headscissor counter. Gallagher wrenches but Gulak works his way up. Gulak doesn’t pop out, he rolls Gallagher over and bridges. Fans applaud Gulak’s technical prowess as he gets the leg knot and tries for the full Queen Angelito stretch.

Gulak twists Gallagher, but Gallagher slips out to trip Gulak. Gallagher goes after the legs now, and twists with a toehold. Gulak spins to ease the pressure but Gallagher holds on. Gallagher wrenches more, and makes it a heel hook. Gulak endures, spins, and gets Gallagher’s leg. Gulak now has a standing leg lock, but his own foot pains him too much. He lets Gallagher go, but gets to a corner for safety. Gallagher respects Gulak and waits for him to come out. The two tie up again and Gallagher gets that leg. Gulak counters with a facelock and the two hop around. Gallagher trips Gulak again, but both men get a leg lock on the other. Fans love this technical showdown as the two fight for control.

Gallagher shoves Gulak back and heel hooks, but Gulak goes after one of his own. Gallagher wrenches, so Gulak stands and grabs Gallagher. Gulak drags Gallagher into an attempted triangle but Gallagher stands up to keep the leg lock. Gallagher brings Gulak around for a spinning toehold, then makes it a standing deathlock. Gulak endures the wrenching, but Gallagher shifts and gets the knot! Gulak knows what that means, and Gallagher puts in a bridging Indian Deathlock! But Gulak reaches over, and grabs Gallagher in a sleeper! Gulak gets free, and wants his GuLOCK! Gallagher scrambles and gets a ropebreak. Gulak lets go and Gallagher backs off.

The two circle again, then tie up. Gulak spins gets the wristlock takedown. He steps through for a hammerlock, then grabs Gallagher’s legs for the cloverleaf! Gulak bends Gallagher back, but Gallagher refuses to quit. Gallagher gets out and brings Gulak in. Gulak turns but Gallagher uses the momentum to keep going, and they end up in a corner. The ref counts the ropebreak but Gallagher grinds his forehead into Gulak’s. Gallagher backs off at 4, but then kicks the bad leg. Gulak forearms back, so Gallagher does, too. Gallagher adds a stiff European Uppercut, and it seems the friendship really is out of the window now.

Gallagher kicks that bad leg, but Gulak chops back stiff. Gulak headbutts Gallagher’s stomach, then chops again. Gallagher kicks the leg again, then forearms away. Gallagher returns the chops, as well, then whips Gulak. Gulak reverses but things speed up. Gulak rolls, grabs a leg, victory roll, TWO! They both stand, Gallagher EuroUppers but Gulak chops and chops. Gulak also uses palm strikes, but he spins around into the Extraorindary Headbutt!

Cover, Gallagher wins!

Winner: Jack Gallagher, by pinfall; advances to the second round

The Extraordinary Gentleman takes out the Yankee! Now he awaits the winner of Zack Gibson VS Amir Jordan in the quarterfinals.

 

Ligero VS Travis Banks!

The Prestigious Mexican Sensation and the Kiwi Buzzsaw collide in an international crossover. Will this United Kingdom Division Tournament be taken over by a foreign entity?

The bell rings, and the two men circle. They tie up, Travis gets the headlock. Travis shifts to a wristlock, but Ligero reverses to his own, and a headlock. Travis tries but can’t power out. He suplexes but Ligero lands on his feet. Things speed up, and Travis cartwheels over Ligero. They keep going, and Travis throws Ligero to a corner. Ligero runs back out, but Travis sweeps the legs! Travis adds a stiff mule kick! Cover, TWO! Travis keeps his cool, and brings Ligero up for chops. Fans duel, Ligero shoves and waistlocks but then runs to headscissor Travis down. Travis gets to a corner and Ligero whips but Travis reverses. Ligero goes up and under, then goes around and over, then back under, to roll Travis for a mule kick of his own. Ligero brings Travis up for a big suplex, then covers, TWO.

Travis sits up while fans rally. Ligero gives Travis a forearm, but Travis kicks away. Ligero catches a kick, sweeps the leg, and standing moonsaults! Cover, TWO! Fans rally again as Ligero brings Travis up. Ligero runs, but his springboard almost fails with the slippery ropes. He does jump, but Travis easily deflects him. Travis hits the shotgun knee! Ligero gets to ropes while fans duel. Travis runs in for the back elbow, then another, then runs corner to corner, but Ligero follows. Travis sweeps the leg again and Ligero hits buckles. Ligero sits down, Travis goes corner to corner, cannonball! Travis drags Ligero out, cover, TWO!

Fans build to a rally as Travis brings Ligero up and around. Travis suplexes, but Ligero slips out. Ligero waistlocks, Travis standing switches, but Ligero throws him out. Ligero runs and FLIES! He takes Travis out with the tope conjilo, then brings him back in. Ligero runs and springboards, but Travis back drops. Ligero sunset flips through but Travis sits on the cover! TWO and Ligero covers, TWO. Travis covers again, ONE and back to Ligero! ONE, ONE, ONE, ONE, etc! It keeps going, but Ligero gets it to stop, TWO! Fans applaud as both men stand. Ligero uppercuts, then runs, but into a big lariat! Travis runs, goes to a corner to springboard, Slice of Heaven enziguri! Cover, TWO! Travis gets mad, and suplexes, Kiwi Crusher!

Cover, Travis wins!

Winner: Travis Banks, by pinfall; advances to the second round

The New Zealand Terminator and current Progress World Champion takes care of a former Progress World Champion. Can Travis make it all the way to the end to challenge the WWE United Kingdom Champion?

 

Dave Mastiff VS Kenny Williams!

Big Bad Dave and The Bollocks make for the first pure match-up of the marathon. Both men have held championships in the UK before, but will either man make it to challenge THE UK Champion?

The bell rings, and Mastiff watches Williams as he goes around the ring. They tie up, and Mastiff just tosses Williams backwards! Williams gets to a corner, but comes back to tie up again. Mastiff powers Williams to a corner, and Williams goes up the ropes to keep from getting squashed. Mastiff backs off, but pats Williams on the head. Williams dares him to come back, and then boots Mastiff. Williams leaps over, then rolls under, to leap up again! He tries to sunset but Mastiff is too massive. Mastiff sits down, but misses! Williams runs and shining wizard! Cover, ONE and with authority.

Williams keeps going with forearms on Mastiff. Mastiff throws Williams again, but misses in the corner. Williams keeps moving, but that crossbody does nothing! Mastiff’s back senton squashes Williams! Cover, TWO! Williams gasps for air, but Mastiff is on him with elbows to the jaw and shoulder. Cover, TWO, and Mastiff grows frustrated. Mastiff stalks Williams to a corner, then brings him out to snapmare into a seated abdominal stretch. Mastiff grinds his forearm in, but fans are dueling. More heavy elbows, cover, TWO.

Mastiff grabs Williams but Williams hits back. Mastiff’s knee knocks Williams down, then he whips Williams to dropkick him! Yes, Big Bad Dave did a dropkick. Williams gets to a corner, and fans rally, but Mastiff is on him. Mastiff whips Williams back into the corner hard, but Williams stands up. Mastiff whips but Williams reverses with a jawbreaker! Williams grabs Mastiff but Mastiff shoves him away. Williams hurdles Mastiff on the rebound, then springboards, but is taken out of the sky by Mastiff’s powerful right hand! Mastiff fires up, as do the fans, and he deadlifts Williams. Williams elbows out, then dropkicks the legs out.

Fans rally again, and Williams dumps Mastiff out. Willams sees Mastiff climbing back up, so he springboards for a back elbow! It was just enough to send Mastiff back down. Williams fires up, runs, and hits the wrecking ball dropkick. Mastiff staggers so Williams runs again to DIVE! Williams only staggers Mastiff, but Williams puts Mastiff in the ring. Fans rally up while Williams climbs up. Williams aims, leaps, and hits the Marty McFlying Elbow! Cover, TWO, and with such force! Williams is running out of ideas, but he still has something left. He clubs away on Mastiff, but Mastiff grabs his waist. Williams elbows away, then runs into a tilt-o-whirl, but Mastiff tosses him off! Williams flounders to a corner, and Mastiff comes running in, for another dropkick! Mastiff keeps going, cannonball!!

Cover, Mastiff wins!

Winner: Dave Mastiff, by pinfall; advances to the second round

The British Bull Mastiff downs Williams and moves on. Will he be met by Joe Coffee or Tucker in the quarter finals?

 

Flash Morgan Webster VS James Drake!

The Modfather and Mr. Mayhem have met in the past, but now they meet again for a chance at WWE championship gold. Will Flash (Ah~) Morgan take flight? Or will Drake drag him down to the ground and leave him in the dust?

The bell rings and the two circle fast. They tie up, and Drake powers Flash back. Flash turns it around as they go into a corner, but then Drake comes out with the wristlock. Drake brings Flash to the mat, but Flash gets up. Drake grinds his forearm then wrenches the arm. Flash spins, flips and reverses while fans chant for him. Drake rolls and flips back, to then forearm Flash in the face. Drake whips Flash, but Flash goes up and over. Flash side steps Drake, then speeds things up for a spinning Japanese arm-drag. He baits Drake to a corner and sticks out his boots, but Drake blocks and tosses him over. Flash comes back with another arm-drag! Drake gets up and Flash dances as he eggs Drake on. Flash blocks the kick and gets a takedown, then flips for an imploding senton. Cover, TWO!

Flip keeps on Drake, runs, and jumps for a guillotine hold! Drake gets the ropebreak, then sucker punches with an elbow! Flash drops down to the mat, but Drake grins as he brings Flash up for another shot. Drake drags Flash into a chinlock, but fans rally for Flash. Flash feeds off the energy but gets another forearm from Drake. Drake goes after Flash but Flash kicks him back. Flash kicks and throws hands, then forearms. Drake grabs Flash’s ear! Then smacks him with that #GritYourTeeth forearm! Cover, TWO!

Drake grimaces at Flash and wraps him back in the chinlock. Fans duel while Flash endures. Drake brings him down to the mat, and even gives a Dry Willie. Fans rally up and Flash gets up, but gets another forearm. Drake suplexes but Flash lands out of it, rolls Drake up, TWO! Flash gets to a corner and boots Drake away. They both go to corners, but Drake runs in. Flash goes up and over again, then around, to springboard, corkscrew senton! Fans fire up again and Flash gets up. Drake gets to a corner, Flash runs in, big forearm smash, then another. Flash keeps going, and dodges Drake’s counter attack to hit a knee strike! Drake rolls out of the ring, and Flash builds speed again. Flash FLIES with the senton!

Flash puts Drake back in, then climbs up, big crossbody! Roll through from Drake, TWO! Flash whips Drake but Drake go to the apron. Drake shoulders and forearms Flash down. Drake climbs up but Flash stops him with a swing kick. Flash climbs up to join Drake, SUPER Steiner! Cover, TWO! Drake survives the crash landing, but Flash won’t give up, either. Flash waits for Drake, runs in, but Drake blocks into Tombstone position, and turns it into a sit-out facebuster, aka the Downswing! Cover, TWO!? Drake is furious that Flash survived.

Drake stands up while fans chant for Flash. He brings Flash up, Flash rolls down for a cover but Drake sits on it, only for Flash to roll it back over, TWO! Drake grabs Flash’s wrist but Flash reverses to an uppercut! Flash fires up and runs, but Drake follows with a dropkick! Drake fires up now, then gets up top. Drake flips but has to bail out as Flash evades. His legs buckle, and Flash pounces with the tilt-o-whirl inverted DDT!

Cover, Flash wins!

Winner: Flash Morgan Webster, by pinfall; advances to the second round.

The Modfather flies high and takes the victory! Will he meet Tyson T-Bone or Jordan Devlin in the quarterfinals?

 

Zack Gibson VS Amir Jordan!

The King of Scouse Style and The Bhangra Badboy know their opponent in the next round, but must deal with each other first. Who will win and be ready for Jack Gallagher in the quarterfinals?

The bell rings and the two circle. They tie up, and Gibson powers Jordan to a corner. He backs off at the count, but dares Jordan to come at him. Jordan circles with Gibson again, but Gibson powers him to the mat. Gibson goes after the wrist, but Jordan rolls and gets up, only for Gibson to wrangle him down again. Gibson brings Jordan up for a keylock, but Jordan gets to ropes. The referee backs Gibson off, but he gives Jordan a taunting kick. Jordan springs up to his feet in a huff, and Gibson tells Jordan to ignore the fans, only focus on him. They tie up, Jordan gets a hammerlock but Gibson elbows him away. Gibson then forearms and uppercuts Jordan, then whips him corner to corner.

Jordan goes up and over, but the arm-drag is blocked into a backslide. ONE, and Gibson grabs the legs to catapult Jordan. Jordan uses that to hop up onto the second rope, then jump out. Gibson gets under, but Jordan rolls back to headscissors Gibson down. Jordan dares Gibson to bring it now, and things speed up. Jordan clears Gibson then dodges him to run him over with a crossbody! Fans fire up as Jordan handsprings up. Gibson glares as Jordan dares him to bring the fight. Gibson lunges but Jordan gets around and hip tosses him down. Cover, ONE, but Jordan stays on Gibson with forearms. Jordan whips but Gibson reverses into a keylock driver! Gibson adds a dropkick and Jordan rolls to a corner.

Gibson drags Jordan up to club his shoulders, then rock him with a haymakers. He reels Jordan into a lariat, then stomps away. Jordan hits back, but Gibson forearms him to a corner. Gibson goes after the arm again, but Jordan snapmares counters. Gibson keeps hold of the wristlock for a takedown, then a hammerlock stomp! Jordan clutches his arm in pain while Gibson talks trash. Gibson brings Jordan up for a EuroUpper, then hooks Jordan’s face for the cover. TWO, but Gibson just looms over Jordan. He toys with Jordan so Jordan kicks back. Gibson shotgun kicks Jordan down, then drags him up in a corner. Gibson goes after that arm again but Jordan hits back. Jordan can’t break free, and Gibson elbows him for a straight-arm suplex!

Gibson keeps on Jordan with forearms, then brings him up again. Snap suplex, then cover, TWO! Gibson clamps onto Jordan again with the half-nelson chinbar. Fans build to a rally, and Jordan endures as Gibson thrashes around. Jordan stands, hits back with body shots, then a jawbreaker. Jordan runs, dodges, and crossbodies again! He keeps on Gibson with forearms, but Gibson covers up in a corner. The referee backs Jordan off but Jordan dropkicks Gibson out of the ring. Jordan kips up, builds speed, and DIVES! They both hit railing but Jordan puts Gibson in the ring. Jordan climbs up, takes aim, and fans rally. He leaps, crossbody! Cover, TWO! So close and yet so far. But Jordan doesn’t give up hope, he has fans on his side.

Jordan runs at Gibson, but is put on the apron. Gibson hobbles away, but Jordan slingshots in for the complete shot! Cover, TWO! That was even closer than earlier! Jordan gets up, as does Gibson. Jordan clubs then brings Gibson up but Gibson arm wringers Jordan down! Gibson stalks Jordan, brings him up, and scoops for the Tombstone, into the swing-out gutbuster! Cover, TWO!! Gibson grimaces and glares at Jordan. “You do not belong here!” Gibson grabs the arm but Jordan grabs the ropes.

The referee backs Gibson off, but Gibson gives Jordan another forearm. Jordan forearms back, so Gibson hits him again. Jordan puts his all into another forearm, but Gibson throat chops. Gibson prepares but misses, Jordan enziguris! Gibson kneels, dazed, and fans rally for Jordan. Jordan boots Gibson, then hops up, tornado, but Gibson blocks with power. Jordan tries to make it a guillotine but Gibson powers through to a suplex, Helter Skelter brainbuster! That’s not all, Gibson brings Jordan around and slaps the back of his head again and again, before locking in a keylock clutch, aka the Shankly Gates!

Jordan taps right away, Gibson wins!

Winner: Zack Gibson, by submission; advances to the second round

Liverpool’s Number One is now through to the quarter finals, and will face Jack Gallagher. The Extraordinary Gentleman already defeated a great grappler in Drew Gulak, but will this grappler prove to be an even tougher challenge?

 

Ashton Smith VS Joseph Conners!

The Righteous Killer Conners takes on the Jamaican Prestige, and the winner moves on to face Travis Banks in the next round. Will Conners’ second time in this tournament be a complete success? Or will Ashton D-Rock him out of the tournament?

The bell rings and they tie up. Ashton puts Conners on the ropes but they break quickly. They tie up again, Conners gets the waistlock but Ashton standing switches. Conners switches, grabs a leg, but Ashton gets to ropes. Conners backs off, and they circle again. They tie up and go around as fans rally. Conners puts on a headlock, but Ashton works against the hold. Ashton hits back then powers out, but Conners runs him over. Conners speeds things up, Ashton dropkicks him down! Cover, ONE, but Ashton keeps on Conners. Conners shoves him back, but runs into Ashton’s calf kick! Ashton whips Conners corner to corner but Conners reverses. Ashton goes up and over, then back drops Conners way up!

Conners runs back at Ashton but Ashton throws him out. Ashton builds speed and slides, but Conners traps him in the apron skirt! Conners then clobbers away on Ashton! The referee counts and Conners lets up for just a moment before he gives stiff clubbing forearms. Conners also elbows Ashton, then drags him out of the skirt. He drags Ashton up and into the ring, but places him on the apron for more vicious clubbing arms. Conners enters the ring, then gives springboard stomps. He drags Ashton up and bumps him off a buckle. Ashton flounders, but Conners is on him with another stomp. Cover, ONE, but Conners grabs Ashton by the ear. Conners has a thing about ears given how one of his is half gone. He reels Ashton into a big lariat! Cover, TWO!

Conners keeps on Ashton with a chinbar, but fans rally up for Ashton. Ashton stands, and pries his way out to run and sunset flip! TWO, and Conners gives Ashton a backbreaker! Cover, TWO! Conners toys with Ashton now as he bumps him off buckles. He clobbers Ashton with clotheslines and elbows, then brings Ashton out. Conners suplexes, float over, TWO. Ashton starts to frustrate Conners but fans are on Ashton’s side. Conners puts on a chinlock and keeps Ashton grounded. Conners shouts that he won’t let Ashton take his spot. Fans rally again, and Ashton gets up. Ashton fights back with elbows, then runs, but Conners trips him! Conners drops elbows, then covers, TWO.

Conners brings Ashton up for another buckle bump, then brings him back to the apron. He bends Ashton against the post! The referee counts and Conners lets go at 4, just to do it again. Conners returns in the ring, and baseball slides Ashton into the post ribs first! The referee reprimands Conners but Conners argues back. Ashton slumps to the floor while fans boo Conners. Conners waits for Ashton to return, to baseball slide him again! He shouts that Ashton is NOT taking this tournament from him. Conners puts Ashton back in and covers, TWO. Conners stomps those damaged ribs, and uses it as a cover, TWO. He won’t let up on Ashton, and he grabs that ear again.

Conners stands Ashton up, but Ashton fights back with body shots. Ashton fireman carry but Conners slips out. Conners waistlocks, but Ashton swings a back elbow. Conners ducks under to turn it into a bearhug! He powers Ashton into buckles, then backs off. Ashton elbows Conners away, but runs into an abdominal stretch! Ashton endures, but Conners slaps and clubs him. Fans rally again, and Ashton pries his way out. Ashton forearms Conners but Conners throws body shots. Conners and Ashton both grit their teeth, but it’s Ashton with haymaker after haymaker! He whips, Conners reverses, but Ashton leaps for a lariat! Ashton rallies, half-nelson backbreaker!

Fans are fired up for Ashton, and he runs in for a big knee in the corner. Ashton rolls Conners, hops up, leg lariat! Cover, TWO! Ashton tries again, but Conners slips out to the apron and Ashton hits buckles. Conners slingshots for a complete shot! Cover, TWO!! Fans cheer for the tough as nails Ashton. Conners stalks Ashton, drags him up, and prepares the Razor’s Edge, but Ashton slips out and gets the takedown. Conners shoves Ashton away, and catches him in an inside cradle, TWO! Ashton runs, tilt-o-whirl into dragon sleeper, and grabs Conners arm, for a ripcord DDT! AKA, the Ash Cloud!

Cover, Ashton wins!!

Winner: Ashton Smith, by pinfall; advances to the second round

History repeats itself as Conners is eliminated early again. Ashton shows respect to Conners by offering a handshake. Conners thinks about it, but just leaves the ring. Ashton may not have won his opponent’s respect but he did win the match. Can Ashton keep winning when he faces Travis Banks in the quarter finals?

 

Tyson T-Bone VS Jordan Devlin!

Two more returns from the original tournament, The King of the Gypsies would lose in the first round to the Last King of Scotland, Wolfgang, while Finn Balor’s former protege would lose in the second round to eventual inaugural WWE UK Champion, Tyler Bate. Who will move on to face Flash (Ah~!) Morgan in the second round?

The bell rings and Devlin dances around the bigger man. They tie up, and T-Bone powers Devlin into a corner. T-Bone backs up, but swings, only for Devlin to duck and chop. That chop didn’t do much, so Devlin backs off. They tie up again and T-Bone puts Devlin back in the corner. Devlin ducks and chops again, with more sting this time. Devlin dares T-Bone to come out. T-Bone does but Devlin kicks low. Devlin tries to whip but T-Bone blocks and reverses. Devlin goes up and over, then dodges to enziguri! T-Bone is only dazed, but Devlin blocks his kick to give a back elbow. Devlin snapmares T-Bone to kick him in the back, then double knees from the front. Cover, ONE and T-Bone gets out of the ring.

T-Bone catches his breath, but Devlin builds speed, only to run into a clubbing clothesline! T-Bone puts Devlin into a corner and fires off body shots. That bare knuckle brawling history comes in handy, but T-Bone also grinds in a boot. He backs off at 4, but drags Devlin up to whip him corner to corner. T-Bone lifts Devlin for a backbreaker, covers, ONE. Devlin sits up but T-Bone drives in a knee. Fans rally, but T-Bone drops a knee. Devlin gets up but gets a right hand. He goes to ropes, but T-Bone bumps him off buckles. T-Bone chops Devlin while fans duel. Devlin kicks back but T-Bone sweeps his legs. T-Bone drives in a stiff knee, and Devlin is dazed. T-Bone drags Devlin to a cover, TWO.

Devlin tries to catch his breath but T-Bone is on him with a neck wrench. Devlin stands up while fans rally, and pries his way out of T-Bone’s grip. T-Bone knees low, but Devlin dodges again to throw hands. T-Bone shoves then blocks Devlin’s kick, to boot Devlin down. He adds an elbow drop, covers, TWO. T-Bone keeps his cool and drags Devlin back up. He rocks Devlin with a powerful right, but he doesn’t let up. He throws a forearm into the kidneys, then kicks him in the ribs. Devlin gets to a corner, but T-Bone keeps going as he grinds a thumb into the throat. The referee backs T-Bone off, and Devlin boots him back. Devlin does another boot, then dropkicks the legs out.

Devlin runs in but T-Bone puts him on the apron. He still swing kicks T-Bone away, then slingshots in for a cutter! Cover, TWO! Devlin grows frustrated, but fans are rallying. Devlin and T-Bone stand, but T-Bone throws Devlin with an overhead belly2belly! Cover, ONE, but T-Bone is right on Devlin with a Jackhammer! Cover, TWO, and T-Bone can’t believe it. T-Bone glares down at Devlin, then brings him back up. He brings Devlin in but Devlin slips out, and both men hit the other with haymakers. Devlin staggers back while T-Bone simply shakes it off. T-Bone runs but into the post! Devlin hits the spinning roundhouse!

High stack cover, Devlin wins!

Winner: Jordan Devlin, by pinfall; advances to the second round

History repeats for both men as T-Bone goes out early while Devlin makes it to the quarterfinals. Will history continue to repeat for Devlin against the Modfather? Or can he break the trend before it begins and make it all the way to the end?

 

Tucker VS Joe Coffee!

#JustTucker was the first man to fall to Tyler Bate in the inaugural tournament, but that’s nothing to be ashamed of. Meanwhile, The Iron King is the current Scottish Wrestling Alliance’s Scottish Heavyweight Champion looking to be champion of the entire UK! Only one man will advance and meet Dave Mastiff in the next round!

The bell rings and the two circle. They tie up, and Coffey powers Tucker to a corner. The two scrap but Coffey backs off and they circle again. They tie up again, and Coffey again powers Tucker back. But Tucker turns it around and puts Coffey in the corner. Tucker backs up and the two circle again. They tie up, Coffey gets the arm, and wrenches the wrist. Tucker flips and reverses the wristlock onto Coffey. Coffey rolls and reverses and drives Tucker to the mat. Tucker rolls up and gets a headlock. Coffey powers out, they collide shoulders but no one falls. They both run, but Coffey goes perpendicular to Pounce!

Tucker gets to a corner, but Coffey throws body shots. Coffey rolls Tucker with authority, then chops him in the other corner. He whips Tucker corner to corner but Tucker goes up and over. Tucker handsprings, ducks under, then hops up for a springboard back elbow! He handsprings again to show off, covers, ONE. Tucker takes aim, but Coffey sees the kick coming and gets to ropes for safety. Tucker runs in, but into Coffey’s boot! Coffey double underhooks and swings Tucker around! He goes around and around and around, then throws Tucker overhead with the butterfly suplex. Cover, TWO! Coffey keeps his cool while Tucker flounders.

Coffey brings Tucker up for body shots, then a clubbing forearm. He keeps going but Tucker dodges to chop and throw his own hands. Coffey turns it around and throws more hands. He gives a stiff EuroUpper, then powers him all the way to the other corner. Fans rally for Coffey, and he soaks it in. Coffey brings Tucker up, wrenches the arm and brings Tucker to the mat. He puts on pressure, then wraps it around for a cobra clutch. Tucker endures, but it becomes a straitjacket now. Coffey bends Tucker back but fans rally and Tucker pries his way out. Tucker tries to put the straitjacket on Coffey, but Coffey spins through to put it back on Tucker. Coffey rams his knee in and Tucker sits down. Coffey adds pressure but Tucker is up again, only for Coffey to shoulder him down, and even stomp him.

Tucker springs up to mule kick, front kick and chop. Tucker runs, but into a bearhug. Coffey powers Tucker to ropes and then tees off with body shots. Coffey snapmares and drops a knee on the back. Cover, ONE! And Coffey is rather amused. Fans rally and Coffey brings Tucker up in a chinlock. Tucker pries his way out, then snapmares Coffey. Things speed up, and Tucker throws Coffey with a headscissors! Tucker runs in but is put on the apron. He forearms Coffey back, then steps in for the complete shot! Cover, but they’re too close to the ropes. Tucker adjusts and covers, TWO.

Fans rally up for both men, and Tucker climbs up high. Tucker swantons, but onto knees! Coffey runs in, and a big dropkick sends Tucker into the corner. Coffey runs again, but Tucker gets up and follows. Tucker dodges Coffey, Coffey blocks the kick and flips Tucker. Tucker lands on his feet, only to get the Black Coffey discus lariat!

Cover, Coffey wins!

Winner: Joe Coffey, by pinfall; advances to the second round

History repeats for Tucker, but again, he lost to the eventual champion. Does that mean the same will happen for The Iron King? Or will Big Bad Dave Mastiff have something to say about that in the quarterfinals?

 


 

My Thoughts:

A pretty solid opening round for the tournament, with all the matches being pretty good at roughly 10 minutes each. The best overall story probably comes from Gulak VS Gallagher, given their interactions on 205 Live. Once Gallagher returns to 205 Live this Tuesday, I doubt they’ll give much more acknowledgement to what happened between him and Gulak than a few words. Then their story with THE Brian Kendrick against Lucha House Party will resume as planned.

At this point in time, the front-runners for tournament winner would have to be Coffey, Banks and perhaps Devlin. Coffey has been pretty big in the UK scene, with not just the Scottish Heavyweight Championship but two reigns with the ICW WHC. Banks is the current Progress World Champion, and his style is stiff but swift like Dunne’s. Devlin works because of the chip on his shoulder with being Balor’s trainee and it’d be a strange obnoxious underdog story where he validates his ego with all these wins. Now whether even those three could defeat Dunne, that is still up in the air.

My Score: 8.5/10


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Mitchell’s NJPW AXS TV Report: Best of the Super Juniors 25, Final Round!

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on

The best of the Junior Heavyweight Division battled it out, and now the best two stand tall to face each other! Taiji Ishimori came to NJPW to prove he is THE best Junior Heavyweight in the world today, but he’ll have to go through Hiromu Takahashi to do it! Who will win and earn a shot at Will Ospreay’s title?

 

This review of Best of the Super Juniors 25 will be as broadcast by AXS TV.
Therefore, all images are courtesy of AXS TV.

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

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Best of the Super Juniors Finals: Taiji Ishimori VS Hiromu Takahashi; Hiromu Takahashi wins and will challenge Will Ospreay for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship at Dominion.

PLAY BY PLAY

NJPW and AXS review what led to this final round.

“Bone Soldier” returned to Bullet Club, but it was revealed to be Pro-Wrestling NOAH’s Taiji Ishimori! Wrestling Dontaku would be where and when Ishimori attacked Will Ospreay, and making his claim to the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship. Both Ishimori and Ospreay participated in the premier Jr. Heavyweight round-robin tournament, and ended up tied 5-2, but one of Ospreay’s two losses was a loss to Ishimori! Not only would that help Ishimori advance, that proved he could defeat Ospreay clean.

But on the other side of things, Hiromu Takahashi, another of Ospreay’s rivals, also went 5-2 and advanced with his win over yet another of Ospreay’s rivals in Kushida! Now they meet, both determined to get one more match with the Aerial Assassin! Will the Ticking Time Bomb blow up the Bone Soldier? Or will Ishimori drive-by Takahashi on his way to the top?

 

Best of the Super Juniors Finals: Taiji Ishimori VS Hiromu Takahashi!

It’s a first-time-ever match-up of two of the best. Ishimori did everything there is to do as a Junior Heavyweight in Pro-Wrestling NOAH, from being a Three-Time GHC Jr. Heavyweight Champion to being a Six-Time GHC Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Champion. Meanwhile, Hiromu has only just begun his legacy. Whose legacy will grow with adding the Best of the Super Juniors trophy?

By the way, that sketch pad Hiromu has is given to commentary, and Jushin Thunder Liger takes a look inside. It seems Hiromu has written notes on his opinion of the other Super Jr. competitors. Clearly he prefers ACH more than he does Ishimori, going by that smiley face.

Hiromu’s opinions aside, Red Shoes does his check of both men and see they’re clear of anything prohibited. The bell rings, and the match begins, after the break.

NJPW on AXS returns and the fans are strongly behind Hiromu. Hiromu and Ishimori stare down, then slowly start to circle. They tie up but then back off. They approach again, but go back to circling. Finally they tie up, and are evenly matched in strength. Hiromu manages to back Ishimori up, but Ishimori turns it around to put Hiromu against the ropes. Red Shoes calls for the break, and Ishimori backs off, only to swing! Hiromu dodges and whips but Ishimori reverses. Hiromu stops himself to whip again, and reel Ishimori in for a forearm. He puts Ishimori on the second rope to then kick the rope, jacking Ishimori’s jaw. Hiromu runs and blasts Ishimori with a dropkick!

Ishimori ends up outside the ring, and Hiromu builds speed, but Ishimori comes back to headscissor Hiromu down! Ishimori goes after Hiromu in the corner for a whip, but Hiromu slides out. The chase is on as Ishimori pursues, but Hiromu leaps over! Ishimori holds ropes to prevent the sunset flip bomb. He backflips and now they start brawling with forearms! The brawl ends up going through the crowd! Hiromu knocks Ishimori down at the entrance, then drags him back up. Hiromu tosses Ishimiro over the railings, and now they go up the stairs! Ishimori breaks free of the headlock and they brawl again! Hiromu rakes the eyes, then stomps Ishimori down. Hiromu gets plenty of distance, and then runs back in for that John Woo Dropkick!

Ishimori gets blasted, and fans fire up for Hiromu. Hiromu wants everyone to clear the steps, and he brings Ishimori up by his hair. Hiromu brings Ishimori into bomb position, but Ishimori huricanranas Hiromu down those stairs!

Both men are down, but Ishimori is up first while Red Shoes checks on Hiromu. Ishimori walks down and fetches Hiromu, and the 20 count finally begins. It reaches 6 as Ishimori stomps on Hiromu. Ishimori leaves Hiromu at the mercy of the count, and he returns to the ring at 14. Hiromu scrambles to beat the count by 19! But Ishimori is upon him again, putting on a cravat hold to focus on that neck. Ishimori cranks on it, but Hiromu fights out. Ishimori snapmares, and grips Hiromu’s head with his feet. He spins around, and tweaks Hiromu’s neck! Hiromu rolls away but fans rally up for him. Ishimori just tunes it out while Hiromu gets away. Ishimori pursues and throws Hiromu into a post. Fans and Young Lions have to be careful as Ishimori bowls Hiromu into chairs!

Ishimori uses one chair to grind Hiromu into the ground, a wicked grin on his face. Ishimori backs off and returns to the ring, but Hiromu stands. Hiromu returns at the count of 9, but Ishimori is on him again. Ishimori chops Hiromu in a corner, then whips him corner to corner. Hiromu boots but is turned sideways for the swing kick! Ishimori runs, and hits Hiromu with a sliding German Suplex! Fans do applaud, giving credit where credit is due. Cover, TWO, and fans rally again for Hiromu. Ishimori drags Hiromu up, snapmare into chinlock. Hiromu endures while fans rally more. He stands up and fights out of the hold. Hiromu runs, but into the sleeper!

Ishimori gets a takedown, and turns his sleeper into a bully choke. Hiromu endures the wrenching and stretching, while also reaching and crawling for ropes. Hiromu uses his legs for the ropebreak. Ishimori lets go, but keeps his cool. He stalks Hiromu to a corner, and chops him again. He whips Hiromu corner to corner but Hiromu reverses with speed. Hiromu runs in but Ishimori slips out then back in, and then out again to shoulder Hiromu back. Ishimori springboards, but Hiromu trips him up. Hiromu runs, and gets the sunset flip powerbomb this time! The Bone Soldier just got blown up, and we go to break.

NJPW on AXS returns, and the 20 count begins again. Hiromu is up at 6, and in the ring at 10. Ishimori stirs at 13, and manages to beat the count at 19, though gingerly. Ishimori stands in a corner, but Hiromu runs in for a big clothesline. Hiromu rolls Ishimori out to then run and basement dropkick him. Cover, TWO. Hiromu keeps his cool while fans cheer for him. He stands, and toys with Ishimori. He brings Ishimori up to chop him into the corner. Then he whips Ishimori, but Ishimori reverses. Ishimori runs in, but into a boot! Hiromu grabs Ishimori for a hanging triangle headscissors! Red Shoes counts, and Hiromu lets go at 4. Then Hiromu drags Ishimori out, wheelbarrow facebuster on the floor!

But Hiromu has more in store as he gets on the apron. Ishimori stands up, and Hiromu blasts him with another John Woo Dropkick! Ishimori ends up bowling into chairs! Hiromu catches his breath before firing up. He fetches Ishimori from the front row and brings him into the ring. Hiromu climbs up, Ishimori stands, and Hiromu hits a flying cannonball! Cover, TWO, but very close. Hiromu stands while Ishimori stirs. He drags Ishimori up, fireman’s carry, but Ishimori slips out. Hiromu elbows Ishimori off the waistlock, then runs, but Ishimori follows. Ishimori handsprings, but Hiromu clobbers him out of the air! Hiromu’s seen Ospreay do that enough times to know how to counter.

Hiromu and fans fire up again, and he brings Ishimori up again. He brings Ishimori up in the fireman’s carry again, but Ishimori pops out to victory roll! TWO, into a crossface! Hiromu endures, but then Ishimori turns it into the Lebell Lock! Ishimori has that arm threaded, but Hiromu won’t quit. Hiromu drags himself with one arm and both legs, even as Ishimori wrenches back. Hiromu keeps going, and uses those legs to get the ropebreak again! Ishimori lets go, but he stomps Hiromu before bringing him up. Hiromu hits Ishimori, but Ishimori hits back. Ishimori dares Hiromu to hit him again, so Hiromu does. They brawl with forearms again, going back and forth. Hiromu hits, Ishimori hits harder, but Hiromu comes back to hit again and again and again. Hiromu runs, misses, Ishimori runs and tilt-o-whirls Hiromu into the Lebell!

Ishimori wrenches back but Hiromu drags himself around again. Hiromu inches closer and closer, but Ishimori rolls him away from the ropes! Ishimori keeps that Lebell on, but Hiromu refuses to quit! Fans are thunderous for Hiromu, and he claws at the grip. Hiromu drags himself around again, and grabs onto Red Shoes to keep himself from tapping. He then scrambles, only for Ishimori to make it Rings of Saturn! Ishimori even grabs at the legs, but somehow, Hiromu still gets the ropebreak! Ishimori lets him go, but both men are down from exhaustion. They catch their breath while rolling away from each other. Fans rally as both men drag themselves up to their feet.

Ishimori takes aim, runs in, but misses! Hiromu runs in but misses, but then he ducks Ishimori! Hiromu goes after Ishimori on the second rope, German Suplex! But Ishimori lands on his feet! He gets running, but runs into Hiromu’s overhead throw! Hiromu catches his breath while Ishimori is down in the corner. Ishimori slowly stands as Hiromu runs, and Hiromu runs Ishimori over with a powerful lariat! Hiromu drags Ishimori up, fireman’s carry, Time Bomb! Cover, TWO!? Ishimori survives?! Fans are thunderous while we go to break.

NJPW on AXS returns, and both men slowly stir. Hiromu sits up first, but Ishimori gets himself to a corner. Hiromu runs in, hits the clothesline, then hoists Ishimori up. He climbs up to join Ishimori, and hits a super wheelbarrow! Cover, TWO!! Hiromu grits his teeth as he stands up again. He brings Ishimoriu up, fireman’s carry, and then he Death Valley Drivers Ishimori right into buckles! Hiromu drags Ishimori up again, another fireman’s carry, and spins, but Ishimori slips off! Ishimori deflects the superkick but Hiromu deflects the knee strike. Hiromu SUPERKICKS this time, but then runs into a boot. Ishimori Poison-Steiners Hiromu! But Hiromu springs right up to do it back to Ishimori!

Both men are down from such damage to their heads. Fans are at a fever pitch, and still cheering Hiromu on. Both men stir and Red Shoes checks on them. They’re okay to continue, so a count begins. Hiromu and Ishimori stir, they’re up at 7. They crawl towards each other, and brawl with forearms from the mat. Hiromu hits, Ishimori hits, then back again. Hiromu grins with wild eyes as he hits Ishimori again, but Ishimori shakes his head and hits back. They brawl while standing up, and now it speeds up. Hiromu runs out of gas, and Ishimori brings him up for another shot.

Hiromu manages to stand and gets his second wind as he hits back with forearms from both sides. He spins around, but into Ishimori’s jumping knee! Hiromu staggers back, fires up, but runs into a clobbering clothesline! Cover, ONE?! Hiromu shocks Ishimori, but he’s still pretty tired. He slowly stands, but Ishimori is ready. Ishimori runs and blasts Hiromu with a dropkick, then runs corner to corner for double knees! Ishimori drags Hiromu up and into Tombstone position, but turns it into a modified code breaker! Hiromu is dazed, Ishimori covers, TWO!! The superhuman effort is keeping the fans at that fever pitch.

Ishimori gets up, and says BANG as he staggers over. He drags Hiromu up, and lifts Hiromu for a brainbuster, but Hiromu arm-drags out of it! Hiromu goes to headscissor but Ishimori counters with a powerbomb! High stack cover, TWO, and Hiromu gets Ishimori with a triangle hold! Ishimori cartwheels but Hiromu holds on. Ishimori endures, deadlifts, but is brought down again! Hiromu squeezes as tight as he can, but Ishimori tries for a cover. It doesn’t stay, so he deadlifts again, buckle bomb! Ishimori is free, but both men are out of breath. Ishimori rolls away, then runs back in, for a big clothesline. He yurinagi slams Hiromu, then fires himself up. Ishimori climbs up, takes aim, but his 450 hits knees!

Ishimori writhes in pain, but Hiromu’s legs took some damage, too. Both men slowly get up, run in, Hiromu gets around to headscissor Ishimori into the triangle hold! Ishimori deadlifts again, but Hiromu lets go to double underhook! D DRIVER!!

Hiromu can’t make the cover, he’s just too tired. So he goes for the triangle again! Ishimori fades, already dazed from that driver. Ishimori tries a second effort as he grabs at Red Shoes. He keeps moving, reaching, and gets a ropebreak! Hiromu lets him go, but he’s still focused. He brings Ishimori up, fireman’s carry, but Ishimori slips out. Ishimori wants his brainbuster but Hiromu resists. Hiromu lifts again, for another Death Valley into buckles! Hiromu drags Ishimoro up one more time, and swings him for THE Ticking Time Bomb! Cover, Hiromu wins!!

Winner: Hiromu Takahashi, by pinfall; wins the Best of the Super Juniors 25, and will challenge Will Ospreay for the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship

For the first time in his career, Hiromu Takahashi is THE Best of the Super Juniors! The award ceremony will begin after the break.

NJPW on AXS TV returns…

Ishimori is helped out of the ring and to the back. Fans applaud, showing respect to him for his valiant effort. Meanwhile, Hiromu is presented with the Best of the Super Juniors trophy, poses for pictures, and sits down before taking the mic.

“I don’t like it. I don’t like it much at all.” That is to say, he doesn’t like saying this after the tournament. So he must apologize first. But Ospreay! Accept his challenge for that IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship! Will Ospreay comes out! He joins Hiromu in the ring, his title in hand. Aerial Assassin and Ticking Time Bomb stand, and Ospreay congratulates his rival. Everyone is so proud, even Ospreay. Hiromu won Best of the Super Juniors, well done. But that doesn’t mean a thing compared to the belt, because that means Ospreay is the real best Jr. Heavyweight.

Ospreay reminds everyone that he is already up two wins on Hiromu in the past, so Ospreay knows that Dominion will be easy. Ospreay vows to leave with his title, and proves he really is the best in the world. Champion raises his belt, challenger raises his trophy, who will be raising their hands after Osaka?

Ospreay takes his leave, and Hiromu says, “Ospreay. Thank you meow.” The Ticking Time Bomb is not intimidated, and continues to say “Did you all just see that?” Even those watching at home on TV, did they see it? For that matter, did all the Heavyweights see that? Even Liger saw that, right? This is how SUPER JUNIORS do it! Liger has to applaud for that one. “Five years ago today, in this same spot, I still remember what I said.” Hiromu still feels that way. His dream is to hold that IWGP J. Heavyweight belt, and to be a Jr. Heavyweight main event, prime timer!! “Nothing has changed! I’m exactly the same as I was then.” But even more, more, more, more, more, “Let’s have fun!” With everything he has to say already said, Hiromu finally celebrates.

But not just him, the rest of LIJ joins him! Naito, Bushi, EVIL and Sanada appear, and Hiromu shows off his trophy to them. And together, LIJ celebrate.

Hiromu kneels while Naito, Bushi, EVIL and Sanada move aside. Oops, the wing…

Well, that tarnishes the win a little bit. Hiromu kneels in apology to the hurt trophy. Is this a bad omen of things to come?

 

Backstage interviews.

Taiji Ishimori admits defeat. Today, Hiromu was the better man. But, Ishimori knows there’s more for him to show. There’s unfinished business. Ishimori agrees, though, it’s tough, but fun. Ishimori wants more, more, more! “New battles, exceeding our limits.” He wants to have more fun with Hiromu. “It’s reborn!”

Hiromu said this in the ring, but this tournament is more than just to name a #1 contender. He’s said it all along. Hiromu does apologize, he’s already challenged and lost to Ospreay many times this year. But just one more chance, that all he needs. Ospreay is the best, but so is Hiromu. They’ll settle this once and for all! Dominion is coming, who will truly be THE Best of the Super Juniors?

 


 

My Thoughts:

I was surprised to see AXS TV bring up the finals of the Super Juniors, but I suppose it really is the most important part of the tournament. At the same time, this does help AXS speed up their coverage of NJPW so that they can get to Dominion sooner. This is also the match that THE Dave Meltzer award 5.5 stars, thereby breaking his 5 star system, again. While Meltzer is right in giving this the best rating out of all the BOSJ matches, going over 5 stars seems a bit much. Just reaching 5 stars is more realistic, because it really did have great action and even great character and story work. They went all around the arena, and Ishimori was dead set on a submission victory, but Hiromu showed two can play that game.

It’s really great for Hiromu to go over here because his rivalry with Ospreay has been longer standing, Ishimori only just got to NJPW, and Hiromu is vastly more popular, as the fans showed tonight as they did not sway in their support of him. Hiromu’s interaction with Ospreay was great, but I’m a little sad AXS cut out the interactions with the rest of LIJ. There’s a great little bit where Naito and Hiromu were childishly fighting over the trophy until Naito hands the trophy back with a bow. It means a lot in story for Naito to give that sign of respect to his protege.

My Score: 9/10


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Mitchell’s Ring of Honor Report! (6/16/18)

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ROH WRESTLING TELEVISION, Episode 352

Best in the World is approaching, but ROH first brings us an amazing 10 Man Tag! It will be The Bullet Club, represented by Cody, Marty Scurll, Adam Page & The Young Bucks VS ALL of Los Ingobernables de Japon! Can the American Nightmare and his team overcome the most Tranquilo stable of NJPW?

 

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

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Chuck Taylor VS Kenny King; Kenny King wins.
  • Shane Taylor VS Josh Woods; Shane Taylor wins.
  • 10 Man Tag: The Bullet Club VS Los Ingobernables de Japon; Bullet Club wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

The Bullet Club speaks.

“LIJ, tonight, you have no excuses!” Does anyone know what the J in LIJ really stands for? Cody thinks it’s “jokes”, but that’s not it. Jobbers? No, they’re not jobbers. Juniors? No, that’s not it, either. Jerks? No no no. It stands for JABRONIES! Does anyone think LIJ could sell out 10 thousand seats on their own? No, and certainly not in “30 EFFING MINUTES!” LIJ, Bullet Club is coming for you!

 

Chuck Taylor VS

The K I N G tried to help Austin Aries, only for it to backfire, and then Aries stopped being his friend with an uncalled for attack! Can he snap back with a win over the returning Kentucky Gentleman?

Fans chant for “Chuckie T!” as the match begins. Chuckie offers a hand to uphold the Code of Honor, but Kenny wants a hug. Chuckie declines, hugs are for his Best Friend, Trent. Fans chant “Hug! Hug!” but Chuckie insists on the handshake. Kenny accepts the handshake, then gives long-distance hugs to the fans. Kenny and Chuckie circle and tie up, and Kenny puts Chuckie into a corner. He backs off at the ropebreak, and they circle again. They tie up as fans rally. Chuckie hammerlocks, but Kenny reverses and gets a headlock. Chuckie slips out to a facelock, but Kenny reverses back to a hammerlock. Kenny shifts back to a headlock but Chuckie powers out, only for Kenny to run him over.

Kenny fires up and dances, then runs, but things speed up. Chuckie leaps over but Kenny headlocks. Chuckie reverses to his headlock, but Kenny powers out now, only for Chuckie to run him over. Now Chuckie does a dance, then runs. Things speed up again, and Kenny arm-drags Chuckie. Chuckie gives an arm-drag, and the two stand off. The fans applaud, and now Chuckie gives Kenny a hug. Fans cheer for that! Kenny gives the hug, but then Chuckie fakes a move. The two stay good sports, and tie up again. Kenny gets a wristlock, but Chuckie rolls to reverse into a hammerlock. Kenny spins and whips but Chuckie holds ropes. They break but then hug again. Belly2belly from Chuckie! Chuckie grins as he dances. Kenny hits Chuckie back but Chuckie forearms Kenny down, and we go to break.

ROH returns, and Chuckie has Kenny in a corner. Chuckie scoop slams him, then shouts that he’s never missed a moonsault ever! He climbs up, then leaps, but he belly flops on the mat! And he slaps the mat in frustration over his first miss. Kenny gets up while Chuckie crawls away. Kenny runs in and jabs away, then bobs and weaves. He whips Chuckie and hits him with the heel kick! Kenny brings Chuckie up but Chuckie kicks low. Chuckie runs but is put on the apron. Kenny hits Chuckie with the Eddie Gordo Kick, then slingshots out to knock Chuckie down! Fans fire up, and a fan gets a selfie with Kenny! But the phone messes it up, so no actual selfie was taken. Kenny returns to the ring, climbs up top, and Chuckie stands. Kenny leaps, crossbody! Cover, TWO!

Kenny keeps his cool, and reminds the fans to have their cameras ready. He hauls Chuckie up, but Chuckie slips off to hotshot Kenny down. Chuckie high fives the fan, then gets everyone fired up. It’s One Dog Night, the most dangerous slingshot stop! But Kenny dodges, so Chuckie slingshots back out to knock Kenny down! Chuckie’s stuck but he gives a thumbs up. Chuckie gets up, and finally that fan gets a selfie. Kenny gets back in the ring, but Chuckie follows. Chuckie shoulders in, then slingshots over, and counters the headscissors with a sit-out bomb! Cover, TWO, but fans rally up for Chuckie.

Chuckie brings Kenny up, but Kenny blocks the suplex. Chuckie clubs Kenny, then suplexes, but Kenny slips out. Kenny waistlocks, but Chuckie standing switches. Chuckie swings Kenny out, Sole Food! Chuckie runs, but into a glancing uppercut! He gets to a corner, and Kenny runs in, but into a knee! Chuckie suplex, Falcon Arrow! Cover, TWO! Fans rally up again, and Chuckie brings Kenny up. Kenny resists Chuckie’s move but Chuckie kicks low. Chuckie runs, but into a spinebuster! Cover, TWO, but Kenny calls for his finish.

Kenny drags Chuckie up, fireman’s carry, but Chuckie small pakcage, TWO. Chuckie with the snap piledriver! Cover, TWO! And Chuckie grows frustrated. But then he fires back up and calls for his own finish. He lifts but Kenny slips out. Chuckie swings but Kenny gets behind, atomic drop to spinning roundhouse! Then, fireman’s carry and swing out, Royal Flush!

Cover, Kenny wins!

Winner: Kenny King, by pinfall

The K I N G feels a lot better after this victory, but he’s still got the Greatest Man That Ever Lived on his mind. Will Kenny get his hands on Austin Aries in the future to exact his revenge?

 

The Briscoes speak.

“People been asking a lotta damn questions.” Briscoes, what’s wrong with all? Why’ve you been going down this dark path? Why, Briscoes, Why? “First of all, who is y’all to be asking us these questions?!” Do you know they are? They’re the champs! So mind your business.

As for the Young Bucks, listen up and listen good. Mark gives them credit for being best in the world, at selling T-shirts and making YouTube videos and a bunch of other stuff! The Bucks can do so much! But #DemBoyz know there’s something the Bucks can’t do, and that’s take the titles from the Briscoes. Best in the World will bring an ROH World Tag Team Championship rematch between two of the best teams today. Who will prove themselves THE best in the world?

 

Shane Taylor is in the ring.

The Notorious Hitman tells Josh “The Goods” Woods that Woods was “dead to rights” in West Palm Beach, Florida! At least, until King Mo stuck his nose in their business. Not surprising that fans are booing, they’re all just like Woods and King Mo! They’re “used to disappointment.” But don’t worry, Shane Taylor will give Chicago something to cheer for when he pops his opponent faster than Derrick Rose did his ACL. Harsh words, but who is Taylor’s opponent? It’s The Goods himself!

Shane Taylor VS Josh Woods!

The tension is high even before the bell. No Code of Honor, and the two men circle, ready to strike. Woods kicks quick, then again, but Taylor gets back. Taylor rushes in, but Woods gets a waistlock. Woods tries to lift but Taylor is too big and strong. Taylor throws back elbows, but then Woods ducks the back hand to try a belly2belly! Taylor ear claps Woods, but then Woods runs. Woods springboards, but Taylor knocks him down with double ax handles! Taylor brags but fans boo and jeer while Woods rolls out of the ring. Taylor pursues, but Woods hits back. Woods throws hands but Taylor headbutts. Woods falls against the barriers, Taylor cannonballs!

Taylor trash talks Chicago while the 10 count begins. Taylor drags Woods up and then puts him on the apron. He climbs up, takes aim, and drops the guillotine leg! Taylor trash talks fans more while we go to break.

ROH returns, and Woods dodges Taylor in a corner. Woods runs in, but Taylor picks him up onto his shoulder. Taylor brings Woods around, but Woods slips into the sleeper and body scissors! Taylor gets a second wind, but Woods shifts down to a German Suplex! Woods holds on, and brings Taylor up again, for another German! He lets go but fires up, as does Chicago. Woods runs in the corner, flying wizard! Woods throws furious forearms, and the referee backs him down, but only for a moment as Woods comes back to ram in knees. The referee backs Woods down again, but Woods slips past, only to run into the One Hitter Quitter! Cover, Taylor wins!

Winner: Shane Taylor, by pinfall

The series between these heavy-handed brawlers is now tied, 1-1! There was no King Mo this time, but Taylor did get a bit lucky. What will happen when these two tie up again for the tiebreaker?

 

Dalton Castle is here!

The Peacock and ROH World Champion, along with his Boys, are here for a close-up look at the main event. Why? Because two of the ten men involved are his contenders at Best in the World for their Triple Threat title match! Though, he does love “Los Incorrigibles”, they’re a great team.

 

10 Man Tag: The Bullet Club VS Los Ingobernables de Japon!

The partnership between ROH and NJPW is on display as Testuya Naito leads Bushi, EVIL, Sanada & Hiromu Takahashi against the American Nightmare, the Villain, the Hangman and the Young Bucks! Will the winners be Tranquilo? Or just, too, sweet?

ROH returns and the teams sort themsevles out. Naito starts against Hangman Page, but Cody says he wants in. Fans want him to tag in, too, so Page obliges. Cody and Naito, the Bullet Club’s supposed leader and LIJ’s actual leader, get the fans fired up. They circle, but Cody flexes. Naito inspects Cody’s muscles, and is impressed. They’re good enough to spit on! Cody takes offense, and kicks Naito to drop and uppercut him. Cody runs, but Naito sends him out! Naito runs, builds speed, and Tranquilo! Cody is furious, throwing around chairs. He slips into the ring, ready to fight, but Naito tags out to Bushi while Scurll tags himself in. Scurll means no harm, but he just wants his turn. Fans chant “Too Sweet! Woop Woop!” for their favorite villain.

Castle on commentary notes that while Scurll is super popular, popularity doesn’t equal ability. Castle is popular and also skilled, and he’ll prove that to everyone at BitW. That aside, The Villain circles with the Jet Black Death Mask, then tie up. Bushi wristlocks but Scurll gets to ropes to flip through. Scurll rolls and spins, then reverses into a headlock takeover. Bushi headscissors but Scurll pops out, then flaps his wings. Fans like that, and “Woop Woop!” for him more. Bushi kicks low, then pulls on the beard! Scurll grabs the fingers, but EVIL saves Bushi! Sanada tags in, but Scurll doesn’t want anything to do with this heavyweight championship tag team. Scurll turns around, so he double tags (if that’s allowed) to the Young Bucks!

Matt & Nick Jackson stare down with EVIL & Sanada, both teams being top tier teams around the world. The fans duel while the Bucks bring up Osaka. EVIL & Sanada shove the Bucks, so the Bucks shove back. Sanada & EVIL kick low, then whip the Bucks. The Bucks slip under the boots, then the clotheslines to- Nope, those kicks are blocked. The Bucks want EVIL & Sanada to “relax”, and that gets through to them. Sanada & EVIL let them go, but then all four put up their dukes. Fans applaud this sportsmanship, but the referee reminds them this is meant to be 1v1 match-ups at a time. That’s when Hiromu tags in! Fans go wild for the Ticking Time Bomb, so Scurll gets in to jaw with his IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship rival. Bushi slithers in, but so does Hangman Page. Naito and Cody join in, and it’s a 5v5 stand-off!

The referee tries to defuse the situation, but it doesn’t work! It’s a 10 man brawl! They all pair off, Hangman tosses Bushi out while Naito and Hiromu do the same with Cody and Scurll. The two tag teams are still in the ring, and the Bucks get the edge. Nick runs and Matt alley-oops for the double dropkick! Bushi returns, but he gets the “You’re dead!” headscissors dropkick! The Bucks aim at Bushi and Naito, and hit double slingshots crossbodies! Sanada returns into the ring, and kicks Cody low. Sanada runs, but into Cody’s drop toehold, and Scurll adds the basement dropkick. Page adds the running shooting star!

Fans fire up while Scurll and Hangman help The Bucks hold Bushi and Naito in place. Cody does the Terminator kneel! Whether he’s the leader or not, that’s not his move, and fans boo him for it. Cody rises, runs, but Hiromu and Daryl Jr. intercept!

Fans are thunderuos as Daryl Jr. runs wild! Daryl Jr. hits down Scurll, but misses the Bucks, and they give double SUPERKICKS to Hiromu! Hiromu goes down, as does Daryl Jr, but Nick runs and FLIES onto Naito & Bushi! Fans are so fired up right now as Matt drags Hiromu up. Matt scoops Hiromu into Tombstone position, but Sanada stops Nick’s slingshot! Nick hits apron, so Matt dumps Hiromu down. Hiromu distracts the referee while EVIL brings a chair in. EVIL tries to pull a Latino Heat as he tosses the chair to Matt, but Matt tosses the chair back. They hot potato the chair, and EVIL just smashes through to knock the chair into Matt! Hiromu and Sanada take care of Cody and Scurll for good measure, but we go to break.

ROH returns and Sanada tags back in. Sanada rakes Matt Jackson’s back. Matt hits back with big haymakers, then whips, but Sanada reverses. Things speed up as Sanada jumps over, then again, but Matt stops to SUPERKICK Sanada down! But both men are down, so their teams rally up for them. Matt crawls, hot tag to Scurll! Sanada hot tags Hiromu, and they brawl with forearms, fast and furious! Fans love this endless stream of strikes, and it’s Scurll who gets the edge. Scurll runs, but Hiromu boots him! Hiromu runs, but into a mule kick, a stomp on the foot, and a shotgun knee! Scurll fires up again, as do the fans.

Scurll hits Naito and Bushi just because, then goes to the apron to SUPERKICK Bushi. He goes in then back out to the other apron, to SUPERKICK Naito! Both fans and Bullet Club rally, and even Castle likes what he sees from Scurll. Scurll returns to Hiromu, but Hiromu kicks. Hiromu runs, but falls for the 52 Fake Out. Not! But Scurll ducks the clothesline but so does Hiromu. Scurll ducks again, and goes for chicken wing! Hiromu breaks free, but ends up in a pumphandle, for Ghostbuster!

Cover, TWO!! Somehow Hiromu survives, and the rallying begins again. Scurll calls for the chicken wing again, does his spin, but Hiromu drops down to roll up! TWO, Scurll hits Hiromu with a European Uppercut. Scurll whips but Hiromu reverses, only for Hiromu to miss. Scurll runs, but is thrown overhead into buckles! Fans love it, even though both men are down. Scurll and Hiromu crawl, hot tags to Nick and EVIL! Sanada enters, too, and LIJ get Nick. They double whip him corner to corner, but Nick comes back to rally with strikes! Nick shining wizards then bulldog clotheslines them both! Nick hits Naito and Bushi just because, and he’s all fired up.

EVIL puts him on the apron, but Nick comes back with a slingshot “Suck It!” facebuster! Cover, Sanada breaks it. LIJ double whip but Matt saves his brother while tagging in. The Bucks knock LIJ back, then double slingshot sunset flips, into double sharpshooters! That’s Cease in stereo! “The! Elite! The the Elite!” echoes out, but Naito and Hiromu save EVIL and Sanada. LIJ whips Matt, but Matt ducks, Hangman double buckshots! But wait, Punishment Martinez is storming down the ramp! Hangman goes out to intercept and they start brawling!

These two won’t wait for Best in the World to settle their grudge! They fight all the way up to the stage, and to the backstage area, but we go to one last break.

ROH returns once more, and Bushi climbs up. Bushi missile dropkicks Matt down then Bushi-roonies up while Hiromu and Naito intercept Scurll and Cody. EVIL hobbles over to Matt and with Bushi’s help, whips Matt corner to corner. EVIL charges in for a big corner clothesline, then rolls Matt out for the others to QUADRUPLE dropkick Matt! Cover, but Cody and Nick break it. Another brawl begins, and Bushi is left alone with Matt in the ring. Bushi climbs up again, but Scurll returns. Scurll saves Matt, then hits a roaring elbow. Hiromu lariats Scurll, then sees Cody coming, yet still gets the Beautiful Disaster kick! Naito throws Cody with a headscissors, but Matt SUPERKICKS Naito! EVIL mule kicks Matt, then Bushi with the Destroyer!

Sanada returns, and LIJ groups up to lift Matt, Magic Killer! Bushi covers, but Nick drags the referee out! Cody attacks Sanada, then EVIL. Cody sends them out, tot hen run and FLY! He takes out EVIL, but Hiromu runs at Nick! Hiromu leaps over for the bomb, but Nick holds the ropes! Bernard the Business Bear attacks Hiromu! Then Nick asai moonsaults! Nick and Bernard high five, but then Bushi spits the green mist into Bernard’s eyes! Wait, that shouldn’t actually… But Bushi goes after Cody, but Cody standing switches. Scurll has his umbrella and swings, but Bushi gets out of the way, and Cody takes the hit! Naito hits Scurll with Destino!

But the Bucks SUPERKICK Naito together! Then SUPERKICKS for Bushi! The Bucks duck EVIL & Sanada, then SUPERKICKS! Fans fire up all over again, and The Bucks target Bushi. Bushi’s counter is countered, springboard for the FIVE STAR MELTZER DRIVER!!

Cover, The Bullet Club wins!!

Winners: The Bullet Club, Matt Jackson pinning

Bullet Club IS fine, but maybe not Bernard. Cody washes Bernard’s eyes out, though again, it shouldn’t matter. The fans chant for “All In!” but Cody and Scurll must first worry about Best in the World and their Triple Threat with Dalton Castle. If Bullet Club truly is fine, can the Allied Powers stay civil in their fight with The Peacock? Or will they implode and allow Castle to retain with ease?

 


 

My Thoughts:

A great night from ROH, as far as action goes. Chuckie and Kenny have a great match that is respectful and clean, as both men are Faces. Kenny wins to keep pace after what Austin Aries did to him, and I really hope that match comes sooner rather than later. Shane Taylor VS Josh Woods was good, but it keeps both guys strong because while Taylor wins, it was thanks to Woods being distracted that gave Taylor the win. The Briscoes give a really good, and even scary promo in regards to their attitude and their coming title match. The ROH tag champion Briscoes VS IWGP tag champion Young Bucks is going to be great. It’s just too bad it isn’t going to be winners take all since it’s an ROH event.

And that’s the one downside of tonight: the continuity error. This episode was obviously recorded in the set before even last week, which is very important. NJPW Dominion was on 6/9/18, and the Young Bucks would defeat EVIL & Sanada for their IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championships. Yet, this episode has EVIL & Sanada still holding those belts. However, there is a logical reason for this continuity error: spoilers. Fans in attendance would not have kept the secret if the Bucks came out with the titles before Dominion even happened. Perhaps the main event of 351, Briscoes VS Roppongi 3K, should’ve been swapped with this one so that continuity still works in some way. Though, that might have made everyone think the Bucks had a match against EVIL & Sanada just hours before their Dominion match…

My Score: 8.5/10


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