Connect with us

Coverage

Mitchell’s WWE Monday Night Raw Report! (2/19/18)

Published

on

All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Seven Man Gauntlet Match: John Cena, Elias, Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, The Miz, Finn Balor & Braun Strowman; Strowman wins.
  • The Bar VS Titus Worldwide w/ Dana Brooke; Titus Worldwide wins.
  • Six Woman Tag: Mickie James, Bayley & Sasha Banks VS Alexa Bliss & Absolution w/ Paige; Mickie, Bayley & Sasha win.

PLAY BY PLAY

“Ladies and Gentlemen, on behalf of the WWE…”

A moment of silence for the victims of the Parkland, FL tragedy and their families.

 

Seven Man Gauntlet Match: John Cena, Elias, Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, The Miz, Finn Balor & Braun Strowman!

All seven men involved in this match will be part of the first-ever Seven Man Elimination Chamber match this Sunday! We start with The Big Dog, Roman Reigns!

Before entering the Universal Championship #1 Contenders Chamber match, Roman will test if he can survive the other six men. This choice was the Raw General Manager’s, and that means he could be in “for a very long night.” How does he feel about taking on such a match this close to the Pay-Per-View event? “I’m not concerned at all about tonight.” He does worry about the Chamber, however. Roman’s never been in one but he’s seen them all, “how rough it is, what it does to the men’s bodies.” On top of that, he’ll be up against some of the best competition in the entire world, from John Cena to Seth Rollins to Braun Strowman. “But all those guys have one thing in common: they cannot beat Brock Lesnar.” That is why this is Roman’s time. And if the WWE Universe don’t think it’s true, watch Wrestlemania 31 and see how close Roman got. But then his first opponent, Seth Rollins, comes out!

The Architect also wants at The Beast, but he’ll have to take on his Shield Brother here and at the Chamber to do it! Will either of these two make it to the end of the Gauntlet?

The bell rings and the fans already duel. Rollins and Roman slowly circle, and the fans chant “Burn it Down!” They tie up, Roman keeping Rollins back. Roman puts Rollins in a corner, then lets him out cleanly. They circle again, they tie up again, and Rollins gets the standing switch. Roman pries the hold open and reverses to a wristlock. Rollins rolls and spins to reverse that onto Roman. Roman reverses again, into a headlock, and doesn’t let Rollins out. He throws Rollins with the headlock takeover and continues to squeeze Rollins’ head. The fans keep up their chanting while Rollins endures. Rollins gets up and to his feet, but Roman brings him back down. Rollins uses headscissors and Roman pops out to again get Rollins in the headlock takeover. Roman says, “I told you, I know all your tricks.”

He keeps up the grind but Rollins gets back up. Rollins powers out this time, but Roman runs him over with a shoulder. The fans are a mix of cheers and jeers as things speed up. Rollins arm-drags Roman then transitions to La Mahistrol, TWO! Rollins keeps on Roman with a backslide, TWO, so he mule kicks and runs, but Roman stands right up to stare him down. The Shield Brothers are even while we go to break.

Raw returns to see Roman has Rollins back in a headlock. The fans duel with chanting, and Rollins stands up again to fight out with body shots. A jawbreaker breaks the hold and Rollins runs, but into Roman’s back elbow! Roman checks his teeth before going back to the dazed Rollins. Rollins staggers at the ropes, but Roman keeps on him with right hands in a corner. Rollins staggers again, Roman whips him corner to corner. Roman runs in but into Rollins’ boot. Rollins comes out but into the tilt-o-whirl slam! Cover, TWO! Roman keeps his cool while Rollins stirs. The fans keep dueling, but Roman keeps focused on Rollins as they both stand up. He whips but Rollins kicks back, then Rollins throws a back elbow. Another boot and Rollins hops up, for the flying blockbuster! They keep moving, Slingblade for Roman.

Roman ends up in a corner and Rollins gets that leg moving as he runs corner to corner. Roman puts Rollins on the outside but Rollins punches him away. Rollins springboards and hits the flying clothesline. The fans fire up as Rollins clotheslines Roman out of the ring. Roman lands on his feet but Rollins builds speed to DI- Roman’s right hand rocks Rollins! Rollins is limp on the second rope as Roman gets space, to hit a Drive-By Dropkick! The referee starts a ring count while Roman catches his breath. He puts Rollins in the ring and follows, but Rollins swings. Roman rallies with clotheslines, then corner clotheslines at close range. Roman gets all ten, then runs to boot Rollins down. The fans are mixed as Roman gets to a corner. Roman locks and loads, takes aim and runs in, but into the wristlock. Roman headbutts Rollins away, then runs back in, but Rollins mule kicks the punch down. Rollins grabs Roman, powerbomb lift and buckle bomb this! SUPERMAN PUNCH outta nowhere! Both men are down as we go to another break.

Raw returns while Rollins climbs to the top rope. He takes aim at Roman, jumps, Frog Splash flops as Roman rolls out of the way. Both men are down again and the referee starts a ten count. The count reaches 3 before the two stir, and 6 when the two stand back up. Rollins swings forearms into Roman, Roman fights back with haymakers. Roman’s uppercut staggers Rollins, but then Rollins throws Roman out of the ring. Rollins runs, DIVES and hits!

He gets back in the ring and goes again to DIVE! Rollins puts Roman back in the ring and climbs over to a corner. He springboards again, SUPERMAN PUNCH knocks him out of the sky!

Cover, TWO! Roman feels some frustration on top of his exhaustion. He sits up while Rollins crawls for ropes. The fans are thunderous both ways but Roman gets up and to a corner. He lets out the howl, then runs but into Rollins’ kick. Rollins mule kicks, goes for the Curb Stomp but Roman evades to roll up, TWO, Rollins rolls up, ROLLINS BEATS REIGNS!!

They’re both shocked but the fans are chanting “YES! YES!” Roman accepts this loss, he and Rollins are still Shield Brothers.

However, the Gauntlet shows no mercy as it brings out…

JOHN CENA!

The Face that Runs the Place wants to get to Wrestlemania by any means necessary. He earned his way into the Elimination Chamber and wants to challenge for his first ever Universal Championship, but can he get through The Architect and the Gauntlet? He turns around Rollins attacks Cena right away! Cover, TWO! The Architect shows no mercy either as we go to break.

Raw returns and Cena now has control as he puts Rollins in a thrashing headlock. Cena has one of Rollins’ arms trapped but Rollins tries to use that other arm to go after Cena’s face. Rollins slips his trapped arm out but Cena just brings him back to the mat and re-traps the arm. Cena makes it a cover but Rollins gets up at ONE. Rollins keeps moving and gets out again. He fights back with body shots, then haymakers. Rollins runs but into Cena’s clothesline. Cena gets serious as he finally takes off his shirt.

He covers, ONE, but Cena keeps focused. He stalks Rollins and Rollins can sense it. Cena still rocks Rollins with a right hand, then whips him corner to corner hard. Quick cover, ONE, so Cena goes back to the headlock. Cena drags Rollins into a sleeper and body scissors. Rollins endures but he’s turning red. He reaches and resists but Cena’s wrapped on tight. Rollins gets out of the body scissors but Cena maintains the headlock. They stand up again and Cena forearms Rollins in the back. Cena kicks Rollins in the head, then drags Rollins up to throw him out. Rollins bumps barriers while Cena waits in the ring. The ring count begins and perhaps Cena wants the easy win, given the circumstances. The count gets up to 9 but Rollins narrowly beats it! He even dares Cena to bring the fight.

Cena keeps on Rollins with another low kick. Cena glares down at Rollins, he wants the ref to count like a Last Man Standing match. He tells Rollins to stay down but Rollins refuses. Cena waits for Rollins, grabs him for a side belly2belly, then rolls into another! He hits a third belly2belly, covers, TWO! The Architect frustrates the leader of the Cenation while we go to break.

Raw returns again and Cena still has control. Rollins staggers to his feet but with Cena stalking him. Cena brings Rollins up but Rollins slips out, kick and DDT! Cover, TWO!

Rollins is too sore and tired to be mad. He and Cena stir, then get to their feet. Rollins throws haymakers and chops on Cena, but Cena ducks to lift Rollins again. Flapjack stunner, TWO! Cena looks frustrated, he isn’t sure what to do to Rollins now. He gets up and glares down at Rollins again. Rollins drags himself to a corner, but Cena backs off. He wants Rollins to get up, and Rollins drags himself to his feet while the fans duel. Rollins puts his dukes up but Cena drops him with a haymaker.

Cena circles Rollins as he stands up again, to knock him down again. He even brags, “I feel great right now.” Rollins won’t give up, so Cena starts boasting and flaunting. He evades Rollins and knocks him back down, ONE. Rollins gets fired up, shoving Cena. They both get fired up and a brawl starts with back and forth haymakers! Rollins runs but into Cena’s back elbow. Cena covers, TWO, and Rollins gets under the rope and out to the apron. Rollins drags himself up, Cena runs and blasts Rollins off the apron. The ring count begins, but Rollins is stirring at 3. He crawls to the ring, but is only halfway there at 6. The count reaches 9 again, and Rollins again beats the count. Cena is both shocked and frustrated while we go to break.

Raw returns once more, and Cena again looks down at the exhausted Rollins. Cena waits for Rollins as he gets back up. Cena runs and starts rallying with those signature shoulder tackles. He goes for the spin-out but Rollins counters with a headlock takeover that puts Cena in a corner. Rollins runs at Cena but Cena puts him on the apron. Rollins punches Cena away then springboards, but Cena catches the leg! STF! Cena has Rollins down, far from ropes! Even so, Rollins drags himself over. Cena lets go to drag Rollins back, but Rollins shoves Cena away. They both get up, Slingblade to Cena! Cover, TWO! Rollins’ bad leg slows him down but he still stands up. He keeps his eyes on Cena as they go corner to corner. Rollins runs in and hits a forearm smash, then snap suplex roll-through to Fa- roll up from Cena, TWO! Spin-out powerbomb! And that always means one thing: “You Can’t See Me!”

Except Rollins kicks Cena, then mule kicks, to mule kick again! Cover, TWO! Cena rolls to the apron but both men are running on fumes now. They both stand up, Rollins hobbles over to Cena. Rollins wants to suplex Cena in, but Cena counters. Cena brings ROllins to the outside but Rollins kicks him away. Rollins runs in, but Cena side-steps to send Rollins into the post! Cena runs back in, but Rollins side-steps to send Cena into steel steps! A ring count begins again but for both men. It reaches 5 before either man stirs. The count reaches 9, Cena and Rollins both beat it by the skin of their teeth.

The fans chant “Burn it Down!” for Rollins as he and Cena get to their feet. Cena throws haymakers, then spin-out powerbomb Rollins again! Five Knuckle Shuffle, then the fireman’s carry, but Rollins rolls down to cover, TWO! Takedown into a Crossface! Cena endures the submission, and uses his superhuman strength to get up to his feet! He puts Rollins in position, AA- But Rollins lands on his feet! Enziguri! Cena is down, Rollins hurries up top! FROG SPLASH!!

TWO!! This is a match moving past 50 minutes and yet Rollins is still going. He and Cena both get up, Rollins goes for the ripcord, but Cena with the fireman’s carry and AA! TWO?!!? Did Rollins kick out?! The referee tells Cena he did! The fans continue to chant “Burn it Down!” for Rollins but Cena climbs up top. Rollins revives and climbs up quick, to SUPERPLEX roll-through to Falcon Arrow!

TWO! Rollins won’t stop here, he gets up and waits for Cena. He runs in for the Stomp but Cena gets that leg again! STF reapplied!

Rollins endures, drags himself to ropes, ropebreak! Cena lets go, yanks Rollins up and ducks the enziguri to put the STF on a third time! Rollins rolls it but Cena rolls it back. Rollins endures the hold, reaches for more ropes and gets another break! Cena holds on a little longer, then finally lets go. Rollins rolls out of the ring and Cena just lets him stay there. The count gets high again but Rollins comes back. Cena intercepts him and brings him up to the top rope. After some positioning, Cena has the fireman’s carry. Rollins fights out! He slips down, Cena jumps but Rollins catches and rolls through, for an ARCHITECT AA!! TWO!! The fans are loving this! Both men are stirring slowly, but Rollins gets himself to a corner. Rollins drags himself up to the top, and the fans fire up for him. He stands up, PHOENIX- No, he has to roll through when Cena isn’t there. Cena grabs Rollins in the fireman’s carry, AA! But that’s not all, eh rolls through to lift again. But Rollins, Kingslayer Knee! Mule kick, CURB STOMP!! ROLLINS BEATS CENA!! After roughly an hour, Rollins is up 2-0 in the Gauntlet!

But here comes Elias!

The Drifter already knows he’ll be last into the Chamber, but he’s fourth in this Gauntlet. And perhaps this will be foreshadowing of things to come, as he goes right after the exhausted Rollins. He covers, TWO! Elias stomps out The Architect, drops a knee, covers, TWO! Elias whips and elbows Rollins down, TWO. Rollins is somehow still going while we go to break.

Raw returns, and Elias has Rollins in a Half-Crab. Rollins endures as he is not the Hour Man, having lasted 60+ minutes. Meanwhile, Cena is interviewed backstage over his “tough loss.” How will he pick up the pieces this Sunday? First, he must compliment Rollins on his abilities, he’s worthy of being Mr. Monday Night. However, Rollins’ focus is only on Mondays. Rollins gets a ropebreak as Cena relates that he’s got his hands full of many things. Rollins can focus on wrestling and wrestling alone, but Cena doesn’t want that to sound like an insult. Cena is trying, and is putting the pressure on himself to win the Chamber. He needs to win, or he might not have a Road to Wrestlemania. Cena will take these six days to sort himself out and try again.

Back to in the ring, Elias stomps away on Rollins again. He yanks Rollins up but Rollins lands on his feet, only for that bad leg to give out again. Elias keeps on Rollins with a mudhole stomp in a corner, then wraps the leg around the ropes. The ref counts, Elias lets go then back hands Rollins in the chest. Rollins chops back, so Elias chops more, and now it’s a slap and chop fight! Rollins backs Elias down with his furious forearms, then more chops. Elias kicks out the bad leg then runs, but into a SUPERKICK! TWO! Rollins is so exhausted, and Elias gets out of the ring. Even so, Rollins forces himself up and slingshots out for a big plancha! Elias goes down but Rollins’ bad leg slows him down again. Rollins rests against the barrier before putting Elias back in the ring. Another mule kick, Rollins runs but into Elias’s boot. Rollins shouts at Elias to bring it, so Elias hits him with a jumping knee! Then, Drift Away! Cover, Elias beats Rollins! The incredible run comes to an end at 65 minutes and two eliminations.

Everyone in the WWE Universe applauds Rollins’ heroic efforts as a referee helps Rollins to the back.

However, Elias can’t rest for long, either, because his opponent is…

FINN BALOR!

Even the Extraordinary Man gives props to the Architect on his way out.

Elias is ready for Finn as Finn heads in, but Finn is ready for Elias, too. Finn throws hands on Elias all around the ring, but Elias knees low. The fans chant “Too Sweet! Woop Woop!” while Elias whips but Finn reverses. Sunset flip but roll through, Finn dropkicks Elias. Cover, TWO, but Finn is focused. He chops Elias in a corner, whips but Elias reverses. Finn side-steps and swing kicks Elias down, then heads up top! He takes aim but Elias bails out, no double stomps yet. The Drifter catches his breath while we go to break.

Raw returns and Elias has Finn in an armlock. The fans rally and Finn fights out, only for Elias to snapmare and knee drop. “Who wants to walk with Elias?!”

Phoenix, Arizona has mixed reactions. Meanwhile, Rollins has his turn with a backstage interview. Elias rams Finn into buckles while Rollins notes that he “pinned two of the best in the world”, back to back and that’s something. However, Rollins knows it doesn’t mean a thing if he doesn’t win this Sunday.

Back to the ring, Elias has Finn in a keylock. Finn fights his way up but Elias scoops him. Finn slips out and forearms Elias back. Elias keeps on the arm, then scoops Finn again for the shoulder breaker. Cover, TWO, but Elias keeps his cool. Elias climbs up and takes aim at Finn, hitting a double ax handle to the shoulder. He even toys with Finn before wrapping that arm around the bottom rope. The ref counts, so Elias lets go, to then take Finn’s arm and slam it on the apron. The fans chant “We Want Strowman!” to mostly troll Elias for what the Monster Among Men did to Elias last week. Elias drags Finn around into a hammerlock and then throws that arm into buckles. Cover, ONE, but Elias keeps focus. Elias wrenches that arm some more in another armlock. Finn endures, gets up and round but Elias brings him back down. Elias rakes and hooks Finn’s nose as well, but Finn keeps it together.

Finn stands up, but Elias throws him to ropes. Finn kicks back, but Elias yanks on the bad arm again. Elias shoves Finn, then forearms him on the rebound, but Finn hits the Pele kick! Both men go down and the fans chant for Finn. Finn gets up and to a corner. Elias runs in but into boots, Finn rallies with running forearm smashes. He whips but Elias reverses, Finn still gets another forearm. Elias end up in a corner, Finn hist him with a running chop. They go corner to corner, Elias back elbows Finn away before hopping up, but then Finn swing kicks him down to the outside. Elias staggers about, Finn goes out and takes aim, blasting dropkick sends Elias into the barriers! Finn drags Elias into the ring, Slingblade drops him down. He takes aim again, but runs into a big lariat! Cover, TWO! Elias  stalks Finn, hoists him up onto his shoulders, spinning powerbomb!

TWO! Both men tough it out while we go to break.

Raw returns to see Finn throw Elias out of the ring! He gets himself to the apron, and hits Elias with a Penalty Kick! Finn brings Elias over with a headlock but Elias powers out to shove Finn into a post! Elias drags Finn up and in, then goes to drop an elbow, but Finn evades. Finn rolls up, TWO, into a Fujiwara armbar!

Finn endures the torque on that beat-up arm, but Elias keeps him away from ropes. Elias keeps on that arm but Finn keeps his teeth grit. Finn drags himself back to those ropes, so Elias drags him away again. Finn counters with double leg takedown and double stomps! The fans fire up for Finn, but Elias kicks that bad arm. Finn hits back with a forearm, then a slingblade! He blasts Elias with another dropkick, and then climbs up again! Finn takes aim, COUP DE GRACE! Finn beats Elias!

There are only two men left to go in this match, but Finn must face…

The Miz!

The Intercontinental Champion sends his Miztourage out first to distract Finn, Miz attacks from behind! The A-Lister rains down lefts then grins before hitting the low DDT.

He covers, TWO. Miz keeps his cool, brings Finn back up, and hits another low DDT. TWO, so he tries again, TWO. Miz grows frustrated, he is going to be first in the Chamber so he wants to stay as fresh as possible. He runs and boots Finn down, Bo and Axel cheering him on. Miz boots Finn down again, but Finn doesn’t stay down. Miz hits a third low boot, covers, TWO. He waits for Finn to stand up, Finn fires off forearms! He whips but Miz reverses, MIz hits a low knee, then throws Finn out of the ring. Miz embraces the heat before trying to distract the ref. The referee doesn’t fall for it, he sees The Miztourage lurking near Finn. Miz uses that so he can slip out and throw Finn into barriers. He puts Finn back in then takes that bad arm and puts it through the ropes. Miz holds on and snaps back to tweak that arm! Miz grins and Finn writhes while the referee checks on him and we go to break.

Raw returns, and Miz pulls Finn’s bad arm back more in a seated armlock. Finn endures, refusing to give up. The fans rally for him and Finn gets up while Elias has his backstage interview. Elias knows he has his huge advantage of going in last for the Chamber. He did quite a bit to Rollins, and that’s what will happen to the other five competitors, too. He’ll pick up the scraps, go on to Wrestlemania and give the “performance of a lifetime” on the Grandest Stage of Them All. Then the entire world will learn what WWE truly means.

Back to the action, Miz prepares his “It Kicks” for Finn. Miz kicks, and kicks, and kicks, firing up more with each one.

Kick after kick after kick, then Miz prepares the buzzsaw, only for Finn to duck and chop back. Finn rocks Miz with a strike fest, then runs to dropkick him. Dragon sleeper, elbow drop DDT! TWO! Finn keeps his focus, gets to his feet, then chops Miz in the conrer. They go corner to corner for another chop. Corner to corner again for a third chop. The fourth time, Miz boots Finn away, prepares the Finale but Finn rolls it, TWO. Miz wrenches and wrings that arm to throw Finn on the mat. Miz runs, but Finn leans back and rolls up, TWO! Finn swings but ends up in the full nelson, but gets the ropebreak. Miz lets go, but Bo cheap shot hotshots the bad arm! Roll-up, TWO! The Miztourage is frustrated for Miz, but the fans rally for Finn. Finn gets running, and FLIES onto the Miztourage!

He’s fired up now, swing kicking Miz away. He gets to a corner, blasting dropkick sends Miz back! Axel gets back up but gets knocked back down by Finn. Finn climbs up, Bo comes back but is sent away. Miz trips Finn up on the top! Skull-Crushing Finale! Miz beats Finn! Fans boo and jeer but Miz grins as he points at the sign.

However, he’s forgotten about the seventh man.

BRAUN STROWMAN!

The Monster Among Men is the last man to enter this Gauntlet, and he’s more than ready to go after the Intercontinental Champion. Miz already looks to be begging Strowman for mercy. He runs out of the ring, but Strowman comes back out to follow him. Miz goes to the crowd but Strowman pursues! He runs Miz down right at the end of the production area, then drags Miz all the way back. Strowman tosses Miz over the barriers, and the fans join in on the victorious roar while we got to break.

Raw returns and Strowman is throwing Miz around. He throws Miz across the ring again, and The Miztourage is very concerned for their leader. Strowman kicks Miz while he’s down and almost punts him out of the ring. Strowman throws Miz again, making sure the first man in the Chamber is no better off than any of the others. The Miztourage try to distract but are scared away. Strowman runs corner to corner, but Miz dodges and kicks away on Strowman. That isn’t enough, Strowman shoves Miz down and away. Strowman walks over and drags Miz up, Miz hotshots him back. Miz hurries back in and dropkicks Strowman to a corner. Meanwhile, Finn has his backstage interview, and Finn voices his frustrations about The Miztourage. However, the Chamber will lock those two out, so Miz will be locked inside and alone with Finn and the other five superstars. Finn vows to win the Chamber, then face Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania.

Back in the ring, Miz goes to dropkick Strowman again, but Strowman comes back with a dropkick of his own! Strowman drags Miz up, to club him back down. The fans cheer for Strowman while Strowman dares Miz to get back up. Miz begs for mercy again, but Strowman won’t have any of it. He brings Miz up and headbutts him, then runs at him. Miz dumps Strowman out but Strowman lands on his feet. Miz boots Strowman, runs and wrecking ball dropkicks Strowman! Strowman staggers, but then comes back to run Miz over! The Miztourage backs off while Strowman puts Miz back in the ring. Axel tries to hook his foot, Miz gets Skull Crushing Finale!! TWO! And Miz gets LAUNCHED out of the ring! Miz topples the Miztourage over, but he hurries back into the ring, only to get run over again. Strowman drags Miz up, scoops him, and hits the Monster Slam! Strowman eliminates Miz and wins the Gauntlet Match! With such strength, speed and dominance, can The Monster Among Men conquer the Chamber to get another shot at The Beast?

On-stage interview with Braun Strowman.

Truly a dominating performance, but what will his mindset be in his first Chamber match? “I dont’ fear the unknown, the unknown fears me.” And just like tonight, Sunday’s PPV will end the same way, and then Strowman goes after Lesnar!! “You hear me, Beasty Boy? Because I’m not finished with you.” At Wrestlemania, Lesnar will #GetTheseHands. Now if Charly will excuse him, he has some “unfinished business.” He goes after The Miz and Miztrouage! He drags them all into the ring, Monster Slam for Axel! Monster Slam for Bo! Miz cowers away, but Strowman comes for him, too! Miz makes it to the back but Strowman throws him back out! Then down the ramp! Strowman stalks Miz back to ringside, drags him up and into the ring, and then, making sure everyone’s watching… MONSTER SLAM! Yet, that’s still not enough. The fans want one more, and Strowman will give it. Miz takes a third Monster Slam!

Will the Chamber even survive having the Monster Among Men inside?

 

The next Hall of Fame Inductee: Jeff Jarrett!

Aka Double J, “J E double F, J A double R E double T”, the man from Music City had confidence and arrogance but the flash to back it up. He would strut, boast, rock ‘n’ roll, and win matches. He was an Intercontinental Champion, and European Champion simultaneously, “whether you like it or not!” Jarrett would use a Figure Four, a Full-Nelson Facebuster and a guitar smash to bring himself to the top.

 

Asuka comes to the ring!

The Empress of Tomorrow is still undefeated, but she’s scheduled to face the newest Irresistible Force this Sunday. Should Asuka lose then, she won’t only lose her streak, but she’ll have to worry about Nia joining her should she choose the Raw Women’s Championship for her Wrestlemania match. What does Asuka think of a potential Triple Threat for the title? “I control my own destiny.” And that destiny is to win a championship at Wrestlemania! Yes, but Nia has had bold things to say, such as she is the only woman who can beast Asuka. “Very strong words from a very strong woman,” but Asuka didn’t think Nia didn’t look that strong in their last match, since Nia limped away from the ring. But Nia wants to damage Asuka’s face so much, she’ll have to wear the mask all the time. Nia likes to talk, but Asuka will show her Sunday that “she will not be talking, she will tap out!”

However, Nia appears from the crowd! Asuka is ready, kicking back at the Brutal Beauty. Asuka uses back hands, but Nia then throws her to a corner. The Empress hurries up but Nia is already upon her, fireman’s carry to Samoan Drop!

Nia goes to leave, but has another idea. She runs, and drops the leg! Then another leg drop! And… a third leg drop to the back of Asuka’s head. Nia takes her leave now, but Asuka’s still stirring. Both women are dangerous, and both women are determined, which woman will come out the winner going towards a Wrestlemania Women’s Championship match?

 

Raw takes a look at the WWE’s newest recruit: “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey!

The Royal Rumble made history with its inaugural Women’s Rumble match, but Rousey made the biggest splash when she appeared by surprise. She pointed to the Wrestlemania sign to make her intentions clear. She conquered judo, conquered Women’s MMA, and even made a name for herself in Hollywood. Rousey wants to join WWE to test herself, and will officially sign her contract this Sunday. What will happen to the WWE Women’s Division when it’s put up against Rowdy Rousey?

 

The Bar VS Titus Worldwide w/ Dana Brooke!

The Raw Tag Team Champions, Cesaro & Sheamus, may have underestimated Titus O’Neil & Apollo Crews a few times, but that doesn’t mean Titus & Crews haven’t earned legitimate wins. Can the Real Deal and his top client #MakeItAWin and earn a title match in the near future?

The bell rings and Cesaro starts against Titus. They tie up, and The Gator puts the Swiss Cyborg in a corner. Cesaro turns it around, and the break is clean but chippy. Titus puts Cesaro back in the corner and starts chopping. He tags Apollo then they double whip and double elbow Cesaro down. Apollo covers but Titus’s inadvertent miscue makes that a TWO. Apollo keeps on Cesaro, then tags Titus back in. Titus brings Apollo around for an assisted corner tackle on Cesaro. Apollo feeds Cesaro to Titus’ scoop slam, and then Titus barks at Sheamus. Titus goes to tag Apollo but Cesaro knees low. Apollo still gets the tag while Cesaro walks away, Titus Worldwide brings him in for a big clothesline. Sheamus runs in but gets dropkick’d out, so Cesaro knees Apollo out. The referee keeps Cesaro back, so the Celtic Gladiator runs Apollo over with a clothesline. The Bar regains control while Dana checks on Apollo. Cesaro tags Sheamus, and Sheamus brings Apollo up to throw him into barriers. He keeps on Apollo with European Uppercuts before putting him back in the ring. Sheamus tags Cesaro, and The Bar whip Apollo into the corner. The Bar goes Super Saiyan Kicks on Crews, then Cesaro taunts Titus.

The Bar embraces the heat before Cesaro puts Apollo in a chinlock. Dana rallies the fans, Apollo reaches for Titus but Cesaro tags Sheamus first. Sheamus kicks Crews, then Bar Lariat brings him down. Fans boo and jeer while Sheamus drops a knee, cover, TWO. Sheamus puts Crews in a seated keylock while Dana rallies the fans again. Sheamus tags back to Cesaro, Cesaro flies in with double ax handles. Cover, TWO, tag back to Sheamus. They stomp Apollo, but Apollo fights back. Sheamus keeps him grounded but the fans rally, so Sheamus takes out Titus first. Hot tag to Cesaro, no one home for Crews. Even so, Apollo gets out of the way and lets Cesaro run into the post! He then dumps Sheamus out of the ring and roll s Cesaro, Titus Worldwide wins again!! The Bar is furious and frustrated, but will they have to face the truth that Titus Worldwide are #1 contenders to their titles?

 

Bray Wyatt speaks.

“Some say the end is near. But personally,” Wyatt hopes they’re right. Especially for Matt Hardy, for his end will be at Elimination Chamber.

But WOKEN Hardy interrupts!

“Bray Wyatt and I have been engaging in battle since the dawn of time.” But this is only the beginning. Bray says Hardy is a liar, but Hardy says Wyatt is the liar. “His words mean nothing. Just empty promises from a deeply disturbed and twisted man.” Yet darkness clouds Wyatt, while Hardy has the power of illumination. Hardy must be silenced, but Wyatt must be made OBSOLETE. The Woken World will become a nightmare, but the Woken Warriors will make Wyatt surrender to reality. Elimination Chamber, “Hardy will burn”, but “Wyatt shall be DELETED!” Which man’s ways will ring true this Sunday?

 

Six Woman Tag: Mickie James, Bayley & Sasha Banks VS Alexa Bliss & Absolution w/ Paige!

Elimination Chamber makes history Sunday with its inaugural Women’s Elimination Chamber match for the Raw Women’s Championship. However, The Goddess must work together with enemies to make sure other enemies don’t get ahead in the game. Can dysfunction be kept out of the way to achieve victory tonight?

The bell rings and we start with Kickie James and The Goddess. Of course, Alexa is surprised to see her “friend” is there, so she tags out to the Gladiator, Sonya Deville. Mickie and Sonya circle, Mickie staying away from the MMA-trained superstar’s grip. Paige gets the fans on Absolution’s side, saying, “This is OUR House!” Sonya and Mickie tie up, Mickie gets a wristlock and a headlock, but Sonya turns that into a waistlock and slam. Mickie gets up and drop toeholds, then float to facelock. Mickie brings Sonya over and Sasha tags in. Sasha kicks and wrenches but Sonya forearms and wrenches back. Sasha fights back with body shots but Sonya powers Sasha to Absolution’s corner. Tag to Mandy the Perfect Package, she rocks Sasha with a forearm. She scoops but Sasha shoves Mandy into buckles. Sasha tags in Bayley and Bayley bumps Mandy off buckles before bringing her down, cover, ONE. Bayley puts on a waistlock but Mandy picks a leg and trips her up. Bayley counters with a sideways headscissor throw but Mandy cartwheels through. Mandy boasts and pie-faces Bayley, but Bayley brushes it off. Mandy whips her hair in Bayley’s face, so Bayley tackles Mandy to a corner. Bayley stomps a mudhole into Mandy, even as Paige protests. Mandy staggers out into Bayley’s exploder suplex! Mandy slips out and regroups with Absolution while we go to break.

Raw returns once more, and Mandy has control of Bayley in a chinlock. The fans rally for Bayley and she gets up. Bayley fights out then rolls up, TWO. Mandy kicks Bayley, Bayley kicks back and even takes the fight to Sonya and Alexa nearby. Mandy runs in but gets a flapjack that bumps her off the top buckle! Bayley heads for her corner but Mandy crawls after. Bayley elbows Mandy away but Mandy comes back. Mandy holds on even as Bayley forearms, then reverses a whip. Bayley goes up but Mandy catches her and throws her down on her face. Cover, TWO, and Mandy is a bit surprised. She rains down rights on Bayley, covers again, TWO. Mandy drags Bayley over, Alexa tags in when Sonya wanted it.

The fans cheer, even as Alexa clubs and bumps Bayley off buckles. Alexa stomps a mudhole into Bayley, then brings her back around. Bayley blocks and bumps Alexa back. She heads for her corner but Alexa intercepts. Bayley fights back but Alexa bumps her again. Alexa backs up and runs in for a screaming SLAP! She kicks Bayley while she’s down, then brings her over to tag in Sonya. Sonya mugs Bayley, covers, TWO. She wraps Bayley in bodyscissors to squeeze, but the fans and her teammates rally. Bayley makes it a cover, TWO, but jawbreaker sends Sonya away. Bayley heads for her corner but Sonya intercepts, and Mandy helps! The referee shouts for her to get out, Bayley gets the tag to Sasha! But since the referee didn’t see it, it doesn’t count! Paige helps coordinate Absolution, Sonya goes out and Mandy comes in to bring Bayley around. Bayley throws Mandy off of her, but into Sasha! The Boss goes down, Mandy staggers over but Bayley slips under to tag Mickie! Mickie rallies on Rose, then keeps moving with forearms. She hits a low dropkick on Mandy, then a boot for Sonya. Flapjack for Mandy and Paige gets pissed.

The fans fire up ans Mickie stares down Alexa. Alexa stays away while Mickie climbs up, flying seated senton! Sonya returns but gets the neckbreaker! Mickie is on fire as she aims at Mandy, mule kick to knee lift, then runs but Sonya swipes at her. Sonya gets a wrecking ball dropkick, Mandy comes back with the running knee strike! Cover, but roll-over, then roll back. Mandy hammers away to keep Mickie down, then drags her back up for the abdominal stretch. Mickie endures the bend and stretch, Sonya and Paige cheering Mandy on. The fans rally for Mickie and she slips out to arm-drag Mandy away. Mandy drags Mickie back, pulls her up, and then modified gutwrench suplex! Cover, TWO, so Mandy tags to Sonya. Absolution mugs Mickie, Sonya brings Mickie down with knee strikes. Sonya brings Mickie back up and bumps her off buckles while the fans cheer Mickie on. Mickie fights back, Mick-canrana throws Sonya away. Sasha is waiting, so Sonya intercepts again to carry and dump Mickie down. Cover, TWO, but Sonya keeps her confidence.

She drags Mickie over and tags Mandy. Absolution double suplexes Mickie, but gets double neckbreaker counters! Mickie and Mandy are both down while the fans rally. They crawl for their corners, hot tags to Alexa and Sasha. Sasha rallies on Alexa, and counters the kick with the knee. She runs in but Alexa puts her on the apron, Sasha still kicks Alexa way. Flying double knees on Sonya! Sasha gets back up and sees Alexa coming to counter with a buckle bump and wrecking ball double knees. Alexa is thrown out to the center, Sasha hits flying double knees, but Mandy breaks the cover! Bayley returns, Saido Suplex to Mandy! Alexa rolls Sasha, TWO and Sasha has the cover, TWO. Alexa throws Sasha hard into buckles! She drags Sasha up and out, but Sasha rolls her into the Bank Statement crossface! Alexa taps, Sasha’s team wins!

But then Absolution attacks! They mug Sasha 2v1 but Bayley comes in for the save. However, that’s still 2v1, she gets a roundhouse to facebuster! Sasha gets taken out with the knee strike and a sliding knee. Alexa likes that, but then slowly realizes, she’s not on Absolution’s team anymore. They corner her, but Mickie comes back for the save! She and Alexa give Sonya a double Mick-DT!

Does The Goddess have an ally in the Chamber now? Can alliances even survive a match like The Chamber?

 

My Thoughts:

This Raw, especially as it was a go-home, was amazing. I didn’t expect them to open with the Gauntlet Match, but they did, and it was a PPV level string of action. Rollins starts by doing what none of the fans expected, he eliminated both Roman Reigns and John Cena. Cena does a great job in giving Rollins compliments as the face of Raw while weaving in his own story of wondering what it will take for him to maintain his top tier level of performing. Rollins not making it all the way to the end is also fine, given the amount of time and quality of action he was giving plus the dynamics of Faces and Heels; Rollins may want to be The Man again, but WWE doesn’t want him to already outshine Finn Balor and Braun Strowman, who are each being built up in their own paths. Finn gets to shine against Elias but is then used to help Miz’s Heel heat before Strowman becomes the monster everyone loves to watch squash mortal men, like the Miz. In a perfect WWE, Strowman would be the one primed to face Lesnar at Wrestlemania for the Universal Championship because of how he has everything everyone could want. But WWE isn’t perfect so it’ll probably be Roman.

Since the Gauntlet Match dominated the night, the rest of the three hours didn’t feel like a drag. Bray and Hardy again sell their characters perfectly, but I just hope some part of their match is the BROKEN Universe pre-recorded stuff to help extend the Great War to Wrestlemania and include the rest of the Wyatt and Hardy families. Titus Worldwide gets another “upset” victory over The Bar, so I hope that at some point, Titus Worldwide challenges for the Raw Tag Team Championships. Asuka clearly struggled to smooth out her English in the promo, but honestly, we can cut her some slack because she is still miles ahead of a good number of women in the WWE right now. Nia attacking and actually getting the better of Asuka was really great, too, because now there will be some “real animosity” in their Sunday match to add to the championship implication motivations. Then the Six Woman Tag, while repetitive on paper, was actually pretty fresh given Alexa and Mickie are reviving their former friendship from SmackDown. The champion loses but also stands tall tonight, so I don’t know how that works for 50-50 booking. Both scenarios, Alexa losing and Alexa winning, can work out logically in a match like Elimination Chamber. The keys to making it a great one may be how they book this as an unofficial triple threat tag; Mickie-Alexa VS Bayley-Sasha VS Absolution for a long stretch could be fun, especially if Sasha finally goes full Heel on Bayley before the end.

My score: 8.5/10


Always Use Your Head and visit the official Pro Wrestling Tees store for The Chairshot All t-shirt proceeds help support the advancement of your favorite hard-hitting wrestling website, The Chairshot!


Advertisement
Comments

Coverage

Mitchell’s WWE NXT Report! (4/25/18)

Published

on

Johnny Wrestling called out the NXT Champion, and the NXT Champion replied. Tonight, Johnny Gargano’s first match back is for the championship! Will he finally achieve his dream? Or will Aleister make Gargano #FadeToBlack? Plus, Adam Cole defends his North American Championship for the first time against Oney Lorcan!

 

All images courtesy of the WWE Network streaming service

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Heavy Machinery VS Tino Sabbatelli & Riddick Moss; win(s).
  • NXT North American Championship: Adam Cole VS Oney Lorcan; wins and
  • NXT Championship: Aleister Black VS Johnny Gargano; wins and

PLAY BY PLAY

 


Always Use Your Head and visit the official Pro Wrestling Tees store for The Chairshot All t-shirt proceeds help support the advancement of your favorite hard-hitting wrestling website, The Chairshot!


Continue Reading

Coverage

Mitchell’s WWE 205 Live Report! (4/24/18)

Published

on

Tonight, one man will earn the opportunity at Cedric Alexander’s Cruiserweight Championship in Saudi Arabia! But only by getting through a Gauntlet Match! Will it be a former champion like Kalisto or TJP, or a first-time hopeful like Drew Gulak, Tony Nese or Mustafa Ali that stands tall at the end?

 

All images courtesy of the WWE Network streaming service

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • WWE Cruiserweight Championship #1 Contenders Gaunlet Match: Kalisto wins and will face Cedric Alexander for the Cruiserweight Championship at the Greatest Royal Rumble.

PLAY BY PLAY

Drake Maverick outlines tonight’s Gauntlet Match.

Only five of the best superstars on the 205 Live roster will compete in “the most grueling” match for a chance at the Cruiserweight Championship at the Greatest Royal Rumble. Drew Gulak vows to continue his quest for a #Better205Live. He will defeat any and all opponents and make them tap out. Tony Nese knows Gauntlets require stamina, which is perfect for the Premier Athlete. Kalisto says he’ll take that first step towards being a two-time champion! Inaugural champion TJP says he could “get up of the couch” and make the best tap out. No one will stop “The Best of All Time” from bringing the title back to where it all began. Mustafa Ali knows he was close to being Cruiserweight Champion at Wrestlemania. No matter the hand he’s dealt, he won’t fold. One of these five will survive the Gauntlet, who will meet Cedric Alexander in Saudi Arabia?

 

WWE Cruiserweight Championship #1 Contenders Gaunlet Match!

Buddy Murphy would have been #1 Contender already if not for both his sneak attack on the champion, and not making weight to be part of the Cruiserweight Division. However, his loss will be someone else’s gain. This Gauntlet is going to go all night, and by the end, we will have a challenger for Cedric Alexander! First up are…

Mustafa Ali! The Beacon of Light draws Number One but that doesn’t bother him. Ali will go for as long as it takes to earn another Cruiserweight Championship match.

His opponent will be… TJP! The “Cruiser-Great” and inaugural (New Era) Cruiserweight Champion is Number Two, is it already game over for Ali?

TJP already trash talks Ali as he makes his way into the ring. He clearly feels he should’ve just been made the #1 contender, but he doesn’t mind showing why he deserves that right. The bell rings and we begin.

Mustafa Ali VS TJP!

The two circle, then tie up. TJP puts Ali on the ropes but he honors the break with a dab. Ali doesn’t like the swagger, so he wrenches TJP’s arm. He wrenches and brings TJP down but TJP stands back up, to then roll and reverse to a drop toehold. TJP puts Ali in a facelock and loops an arm for the float over, TWO. Ali arm-drags TJP down to an armlock. TJP spins again to whip, but Ali wrenches TJP’s arm again. Ali puts TJP back in the armlock, but TJP pulls hair. He puts Ali in a corner then whips corner to corner, but Ali goes up and over. Ali handsprings back but only to run into TJP’s shoulder.

TJP runs and things speed up, TJP catches Ali into a dragon’s lair pin! ONE into Ali’s crucifix, ONE to TJP’s standard cover, ONE again. Ali sweeps TJP’s legs for another cover, ONE and TJP returns the favor. ONE as Ali bridges out and runs. He cartwheels over TJP, TJP sunset flips but Ali rolls through. TJP guards when Ali shows a punch, so Ali rolls behind him. TJP doesn’t know where Ali went, until Ali dropkicks him in the back! Fans applaud and Ali dabs to mock TJP. TJP gets mad and kicks, but Ali blocks to give a kick of his own! TJP falls out of the ring but hurries back in, only to run into Ali’s flapjack dropkick. This sends TJP back out, and he decides to stay out when he sees Ali ready to strike.

Fans boo and jeer while TJP catches his breath. The referee counts and Ali waits for TJP. Ali stops waiting and slips out to go after TJP. TJP slips back in but Ali grabs his foot. TJP uses that to hotshot Ali into the ropes! Then he wraps Ali up in a rope-assisted Octopus Stretch!

Ali shouts in pain while the referee counts. TJP lets go at 3, but then he hits Ali with a wrecking ball dropkick! Ali falls to the floor, but TJP drags him back up into the ring. Cover, TWO, but TJP keeps his cool. He brings Ali up while Dasha Fuentes interviews Cedric Alexander backstage.

She knows the Cruiserweight Champion is paying close attention to this Gauntlet match, because he’ll be defending his title against the winner this Friday. But is Buddy Murphy and that ambush of his still on Alexander’s mind? Alexander says Murphy made a statement with that attack, but he also made “the biggest mistake” when he couldn’t make weight. When Murphy does return, Alexander promises to make a statement of his own. But of course, Murphy’s loss makes for “a hell of an opportunity” for the five men in the Gauntlet. If the winner of this match brings their A Game at Greatest Royal Rumble, then Alexander has his work cut out for him. But this is the #AgeofAlexander, he’ll be ready.

While the interview happens, TJP puts Ali in a corner and grinds a boot into Ali’s throat. TJP backs off at the ref’s count, but toys with Ali. He snapmares Ali and hits the slingshot senton, then covers. ONE, but TJP keeps on Ali with a half-surfboard stretch. Ali endures while fans build to a rally. Ali stands up and works to turn TJP, but TJP turns Ali back to bring him to his knees. TJP shifts from surfboard to straitjacket, and bends Ali all the way back against his knees. Ali endures while fans rally again, and rolls over to make it a double wristlock cover. TWO, and TJP yanks Ali into the ropes! Ali snaps back into TJP’s Russian leg sweep and prawn hold cover. TWO, but TJP turns that into a Koji clutch!

Ali endures again while fans rally. He rolls TJP as best he can, but TJP breaks the hold. Ali hits back, giving TJP both an overhand and backhand chop. TJP hits back with a spinning back kick, then whips Ali into a corner. Ali goes up and over then runs, throwing TJP with a headscissors. Ali rallies on TJP, whips but TJP reverses to send him into a corner. TJP runs in but Ali slips out to the apron, and he hits back with a roundhouse. TJP staggers while fans fire up. Ali slingshots in, somersault facebuster! Cover, TWO!

Ali keeps his cool, and stands up over TJP. He brings TJP up for a suplex but TJP slips out. TJP shoves Ali to a corner and Ali bounces off buckles. Ali staggers back into TJP’s double chickenwing, but Ali reverses the Dodon Buster into a victory roll! TWO, and TJP gets to a corner. TJP goes up and over but Ali side steps, only to run into TJP’s back elbow. TJP hops up but Ali rocks him with a palm strike. Ali climbs up to join TJP, but TJP pushes him away! Ali lands on his feet, but TJP’s missile dropkick goes after the knee, flipping Ali onto his back. TJP grabs Ali for the Kneebar!

TJP gets the grapevine! Ali endures while fans rally. He reaches for the ropes as he shouts in pain. He drags himself and TJP over and gets the ropebreak. Fans cheer the heart of the Heart of 205 Live, but TJP holds on until 4 in the count. TJP grabs Ali’s leg but Ali holds onto the ropes, even as Ali stands back up. TJP yanks Ali off the ropes but Ali fights back with haymakers, so TJP carries Ali into a corner! Ali clubs TJP to get him off his leg, and TJP staggers away. TJP runs in and blocks Ali’s boot to go back after the bad leg, but Ali shoves him away with the good leg. Ali hops up and launches himself for a flying tornado DDT! Fans applaud while Ali crawls over. He positions TJP then climbs up top, for the 0-5-4!

It hits, Ali covers, he eliminates TJP!

Elimination: TJP

The “Cruiser-Great” is done for the night, but this was just the beginning for the Beacon of Light. Ali has only minutes to rest before his next opponent comes out. Number Three into the Gauntlet is… A familiar foe, in Drew Gulak!

Mustafa Ali VS Drew Gulak!

Ali knows all too well how Gulak loves to torture an opponent’s joints and his knee is an easy target. Will the self-proclaimed BEST submission specialist in all of the WWE grind Ali into dust?

Gulak taunts Ali as he hobbles around, cornering Ali as he goes for the leg. Ali dodges and rolls Gulak up, TWO, but Ali keeps on Gulak with clubbing forearms. Gulak powers Ali up and throws him legs first at the ropes! Ali rolls out of the ring, clutching his bad leg. Gulak won’t give him time to recover as he goes out to fetch him, but he still walks into Ali’s drop toehold! Gulak hits the ground and both men are down as the referee counts. Ali manages to stand up and put Gulak back in the ring. He climbs up but Gulak goes to intercept, onto to get punched away. Ali leaps for the crossbody! But Gulak rolls through to a Half Crab! He works to turn Ali but Ali pushes him away.

Gulak runs back but into a small package, TWO, and Gulak clobbers Ali with a clothesline! Cover, TWO, but Gulak grins as he looms over the exhausted Ali. Gulak drags Ali around by that bad leg, and stomps it every so often. Ali writhes in pain, but Gulak keeps going as he puts Ali’s leg on the rope and stands on it. Gulak’s weight bends that knee a bad way, and even tortures the ankle. We go picture in picture for a Greatest Royal Rumble plug while Gulak drags Ali up for a chop. Ali falls back, Gulak sits him up and pulls on that bad leg. Gulak grinds a forearm into Ali’s face while stretching that leg all the way back.

Ali endures, and reaches up to claw at Gulak’s face. Ali pops out of the hold and fights back with body shots. Gulak chops back, then shoves Ali to flapjack him on the rebound. Ali’s leg takes part of the hit, Gulak covers, TWO. Gulak stays on that leg with the knee wrench. He shouts for Ali to give up, then drops an elbow before he grapevines the knee wrench. Gulak digs his elbow into Ali’s knee while he again shouts for Ali to give up. Ali endures the pain while keeping this from becoming a cover. The fans rally, and Ali fights back with haymakers. Gulak keeps on the knee but Ali clubs away, so Gulak shifts to stomping that leg. Gulak then dragon screws the leg, and Ali writhes again. Cover, TWO, but Gulak keeps his cool.

Gulak drags Ali up but Ali hits back with body shots and forearms. Ali gives more forearms, but Gulak scoops him. Ali slips out and shoves Gulak to ropes, but Gulak catches Ali’s huricanrana and turns it into a Half Crab! Gulak drags Ali away from the ropes, so Ali is stranded as he endures the pain. Ali manages to roll but Gulak rolls him back. Ali stands up and enziguris Gulak down! Fans rally while Ali gets to a corner. Ali drags himself up with the ropes, Gulak runs in, but Ali slips out and roundhouse kicks him away. Fans fire up and Ali rolls in, but Gulak counters the facebuster into a powerbomb! Matchbox cover, TWO, but Gulak puts the Half Crab back on. Ali endures the pain all over again as Gulak sits all the way down. Gulak tortures Ali by adding in an armlock!

This crab is part Bow ‘n’ Arrow, but Ali does not give up. Fans rally and Ali fights for the ropes. He reaches, and gets the break! Gulak lets go while the fans applaud, he’s growing frustrated. But Gulak keeps on Ali, dragging him up again to bounce him off buckles. Gulak asks Ali if he’s “had enough”, but when Ali doesn’t answer, he bounces Ali off more buckles. Gulak knows Ali likes flying, so he puts Ali on the top rope. He uses the top rope to wrench that bad knee, but Ali ear-claps Gulak back! Ali adjusts while Gulak steadies himself. Ali bumps Gulak off buckles now, then drags him back up for a hangman’s half crab!

Gulak gets a taste of his own medicine, but lets go at the ref’s count of 4. Gulak tumbles out of the ring and to the floor. Ali adjusts, but Gulak is upon him already. Ali punches Gulak back down to then FLY!

Down goes Gulak! Fans chant for Ali while he clutches his leg. Ali drags Gulak up and into the ring, but Gulak is ready, he chop blocks the leg out! Ali collapses, and Gulak drags him back up for the dragon sleeper, but Ali slips around to roll Gulak! TWO, but Ali uses the momentum to hop up and jump back for another flying tornado DDT! Gulak flounders into a drop zone, and Ali hurries back up top. That bad leg slows him down, and then it gives out. Ali still tries, but Gulak springs up to shove Ali off! Ali hits the steel steps on the way down!

The referee checks on Ali, but he is out. Gulak doesn’t care, he drags Ali up and into the ring. He doesn’t go for a cover, either, but for the GuLOCK!

The referee has no choice, he has to call it. Gulak eliminates an unconscious Ali.

Elimination: Mustafa Ali

Fans boo and jeer but Gulak wants his hand raised in victory. He hasn’t won the Gauntlet yet, but he does have some revenge, because he eliminated the man who eliminated him in the Cruiserweight Championship Tournament. However, Number Four in the Gauntlet is… TONY NESE!

Drew Gulak VS Tony Nese!

The Premier Athlete skips the self-indulging and storms his way right down to the ring. Gulak got his payback, can Nese get his?

Gulak rushes Nese the second he’s in the ring but Nese is ready! Nese takes Gulak down and hammers away with left hands! Gulak gets away but only for a moment as Nese drags him back in and stomps him out. Nese doesn’t let up, he drags Gulak up and puts him in a corner for body shots. Nese whips corner to corner and then back drops Gulak! The Premier Athlete fires up and stomps Gulak more. He drags Gulak up but Gulak hits back with body shots and chops of his own. Gulak swings but Nese handsprings to evade, then mule kicks Gulak. Nese hits a knee lift to roundhouse to leg sweep, but Gulak rolls out of the ring. That doesn’t stop Nese, Nese runs and FLIES!

Down goes Gulak again, and the fans fire up with Nese. Nese says Gulak wanted this, then he throws Gulak into barriers. He drags Gulak back up and throws him into more barriers. Nese resets the ring count, then fetches Gulak. He puts Gulak against the apron to give him a sharp chop. Nese gives Gulak more chops as he says Gulak started this when he turned on Nese months ago. Nese then takes aim, and throws Gulak over the announce table, right into Vic’s chair. Fans want “One More Time!” Nese resets the count first, then drags Gulak up to his feet. Nese backs up, and throws Gulak into the side of the announce desk now.

Fans still want more, but the referee insists they bring this back to the ring. Nese obeys, and puts Gulak in the ring. He drags Gulak up, daring him to keep fighting. Gulak hits back, so Nese runs him over! Nese stomps Gulak more, roaring with rage. He drags Gulak up, but Gulak throws Nese out to the apron. Nese wobbles, but he avoids Gulak to kick him back. Gulak falls down and Nese goes to a corner, and he springboards for the triangle moonsault! Gulak gets out of the ring but Nese lands on his feet, to then slide out and rock Gulak with a roaring left forearm! Fans fire up for Nese as he drags Gulak up and into the ring again.

Nese toys with Gulak a bit, then sits him up in the corner. While Nese says Gulak isn’t on Nese’s level, Gulak grabs Nese’s beard! Nese stomps a mudhole into Gulak in return, then runs for the Premier Kneese!

Nese drags Gulak out of the corner, but that’s not enough for Nese. He puts Gulak back in the corner, and brings down the knee pad. Nese says Gulak deserves this, then he runs, but Gulak evades! No second Premier Kneese, but there is a second GuLOCK!

Gulak has Nese trapped! Nese flails, then taps!

Elimination: Tony Nese

Gulak lets him go, and Nese shouts in frustration. Nese’s thirst for vengeance got the better of him, and now he’s out of the Gauntlet match! The fans rub it in by chanting “You Tapped Out!” as he makes his exit. But now we know who is the last man into the Gauntlet: KALISTO!

Drew Gulak VS Kalisto!

The Lucha Dragon is a former Cruiserweight Champion, and is in the best position to win. Will he keep his focus and bring the #LuchaHouseParty to Saudi Arabia?

Kalisto rushes the ring but Gulak slips out. Gulak rests against the announce desk, but Kalisto wants to get going. The fans chant “Lucha! Lucha!” with Kalisto while Gulak clears his head. Kalisto dares Gulak to get back in, and Gulak does, at his own pace. Kalisto rushes him again, and Gulak slips out of the ring again. Gulak walks around the ring while the referee keeps Kalisto in it. Gulak lets the ring count climb to 6 while he recovers. He returns at 7, but then slips back out the second Kalisto runs at him. Fans boo and jeer but Gulak doesn’t care. Gulak slides in but then back out, continuing to frustrate Kalisto.

Gulak returns this time, and now he rushes Kalisto, but Kalisto’s ready with a dropkick! Kalisto follows Gulak out this time to keep the fight going. He Listo kicks Gulak against the barriers! Fans echo “Lucha! Lucha!” while Kalisto stands Gulak up for another Listo kick. Kalisto reenters the ring then dropkicks Gulak back down, then builds speed to DIVE! But Gulak turns it into a slam!

Kalisto crashes and burns into barriers while Gulak gets away. Gulak rests against the LED apron while the referee checks on Kalisto. Kalisto is okay to continue, so a new ring count begins. Gulak leaves Kalisto to the mercy of the count while Dasha Fuentes interviews Tony Nese.

The Premier Athlete is clearly furious, how does he rebound from this? He has no words, and simply leaves, seething. Meanwhile, the count climbs, and Kalisto finally stirs. Kalisto beats the count at 9.5! Gulak keeps on him with elbows to the head, and he even rips the tail of Kalisto’s mask. Gulak stomps on Kalisto, showing neither respect nor mercy to the luchador. He rakes at the mask’s eyes, then puts Kalisto in the dragon sleeper. Kalisto slips out and gets to the ropes for safety. Gulak stalks Kalisto, then drags him up again. Gulak snap suplexes Kalisto, covers, TWO. But Gulak isn’t frustrated, he just grins and laughs it off. He stomps Kalisto and then clubs away with crossface forearms. He forces Kalisto down to a cover, ONE, so Gulak puts a chinlock on.

Kalisto endures, and fans rally with “Lucha! Lucha!” chants. Kalisto fights up and out with body shots, but Gulak knees low. Gulak walks into Kalisto’s boot, then Kalisto spins things around to headscissor throw Gulak down. Gulak gets to a corner then side steps, but Kalisto responds with a SUPERKICK! Kalisto hops up for a tornado DDT, but Gulak blocks that to hang Kalisto up on the ropes. Kalisto bounces off and down, and Gulak gets a third GuLOCK!

Kailsto flails and reaches with his legs, so Gulak drags him up. Gulak lifts Kalisto, but can’t get Kalisto up. He keeps trying, but Kalisto uses that to sling Gulak forward into buckles! Gulak is dazed, Kalisto stands up, and hits the Salida Del Sol!

Cover, Kalisto wins!!

Winner: Kalisto, by pinfall

The Lucha Dragon wins the Gauntlet! He will face Cedric Alexander at the Greatest Royal Rumble for the Cruiserweight Championship! And to join in on the celebration, it’s the rest of Lucha House Party, Lince Dorado & Gran Metalik.

And speaking of the Cruiserweight Champion, Cedric Alexander is still here, and he makes his way out on stage.

The Soul of 205 Live applauds for Kalisto, but he signals that he won’t give the belt up so easily. Lucha House Party is confident their leader will bring the Cruiserweight Championship back from Saudi Arabia, will the #AgeOfAlexander end already?

 


 

My Thoughts:

An incredible night of action, and it was all in one match! The Cruiserweight Division has been on a hot streak ever since January and there’s no signs of slowing down. Just about everything in this was spot on, especially with the action. Ali and TJP starting was a great combination, and with Ali going over, it makes you think he might pull off the miracle of lasting the entire night. However, it feeds his title chase story to go down in the second round. Gulak really builds his aggressive Heel points with going for submission over pin. It also perfectly works towards story that Nese only fails because he wanted to punish Gulak over beat him.

For a moment, I thought Gulak would win it all, but eliminating three men would be too much too soon for him. But since Nese’s revenge is still unsatisfied, they can continue their rivalry instead. Kalisto wins as the last man so that it doesn’t really hurt Gulak’s rankings. The Greatest Royal Rumble is partially filler when it comes to the Cruiserweight Championship, so Kalisto is the choice for the best in-ring action without doing any real harm when Alexander retains. The real title program will be Alexander VS Murphy at Backlash, as Murphy could easily return as soon as next week.

My Score: 8.5/10


Always Use Your Head and visit the official Pro Wrestling Tees store for The Chairshot All t-shirt proceeds help support the advancement of your favorite hard-hitting wrestling website, The Chairshot!


Continue Reading

Coverage

Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Live Report! (4/24/18)

Published

on

Daniel Bryan and The Miz are finally on the same brand again! As such, the Hollywood A-Lister will have the Goat on the SmackDown premiere of Miz TV. Will these two be able to keep from fighting this close to the Greatest Royal Rumble? Plus, Charlotte and Carmella will sign the contract for their Backlash rematch!

 

All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Asuka & Becky Lynch VS The IIconics; The IIconics win.
  • Jimmy Uso w/ Jey VS Rowan w/ Harper; Jimmy Uso wins.
  • Jeff Hardy VS Shelton Benjamin; rescheduled as…
  • Randy Orton VS Shelton Benjamin; Benjamin wins.
  • Shinsuke Nakamura, Rusev & Aiden English VS AJ Styles & The Good Brothers; Nakamura, Rusev & English win.

PLAY BY PLAY

WWE and SmackDown dedicate tonight to Bruno Sammartino.

 

It’s the SmackDown premiere of Miz TV!

The Hollywood A-Lister comes to the Blue Brand because of the Superstar Shake-Up and special request of former General Manager, Daniel Bryan. Miz also looks to take back the Intercontinental Championship at the Greatest Royal Rumble this Friday in the Fatal 4 Way Ladder Match. But as for tonight in Louisville, he shushes them before demanding they welcome him back! Then he begins the Most Must-See WWE Talk Show properly and declares he makes SmackDown THE Show, but “there’s something missing.” That’s the title he held, that his guest gave up three years ago and Miz vows to win for a record ninth time when he defeats Seth Rollins, Finn Balor and Samoa Joe. That title is THE most coveted title in all of the WWE thanks to Miz!

But that’s Friday. Tonight is Tuesday, and this is the moment the world’s been waiting for. Tonight’s guest is a man who threatened to punch Miz in the face. Fans like the sound of that. Miz blames this man for getting Talking Smack cancelled, and then demanded Miz be brought to SmackDown just to get his hands on him. “And quite frankly, I’m surprised.” Miz welcomed his first child into the world, and locking eyes with her for the first time, he knew he had to be a better man. All of Miz’s anger and bitterness towards Daniel Bryan “melted away”. Odd that Bryan isn’t the same after his daughter was born.

But Bryan and Miz still have a lot in common, from being fathers to being television stars to being “masterful, in-ring technicians”. But a major difference: Miz has changed to be a better man. If Bryan still wants to punch him, then he can come on out and do it. Miz and Louisville both want Bryan to come out and do it, but Bryan doesn’t appear. Instead, Big Cass appears!

The Human Skyscraper walks out, dressed in a fresh new suit, and enters the ring. Miz asks what Cass is here for. There’s no guest, so Cass volunteered to be the guest. They take a seat, and Miz says he was going to interview Daniel Bryan. Cass says no one cares about Bryan. Cass got injured and worked 24-7 to get back asap. The day he does, so does Daniel Bryan. But all anyone cares about is “Daniel Bryan this, Daniel Bryan that.” No one cared about Cass! Cass lives in the shadow of an “ordinary little man”. Miz understands Cass is mad, but if he’s trying to help with Bryan, Miz doesn’t need it. Cass tells Miz that “not everything is about you”.

Miz takes offense to that. Does Cass know who he is? Miz is a Grand Slam Champion, first-ballot Hall of Famer, and has main-evented ‘Mania! Wrestling is a what-have-you-done-lately business, and all Cass has done is hobble around! Then maybe Cass should shut Miz’s mouth. Fans would like to see that. Miz says this isn’t about them, this is about Dnaiel Bryan. Damn right! That average Joe who should be laying tile or taking out trash, Bryan is out here spewing trash to the fans. Reach for the stars, achieve dreams, but too bad, because “you are all a bunch of Joe Schmoes.” Cass used to be small and pathetic and weak, “it sucks!” He was bullied and pushed around, until he got sick and tired of it. Cass grew and grew, to be 7 foot tall and someone who beat up those who got him.

Bryan reminds Cass of his weak former self, that’s why Cass hates him! But Cass didn’t need to go to indies, to Japan, to Europe, and you know why? Because Cass is tall, smart and handsome. That makes Cass valuable, a star, and makes him money! Yet, he’s in the shadow of Daniel Bryan? “Not for long.” Cass will make sure Bryan goes back to where he belongs: “on the shelf, beaten, battered, bruised, and retired.” Bryan will never cast a shadow over anyone again. Cass mocks “Yes! Yes!” then drops the mic. The big man had big words for the little Goat, will he be able to back it up should he and Bryan meet in the ring?

 

Speaking of Daniel Bryan…

He’s been attacked! The former GM and champion is down, in need of medics and trainers. Will he be okay to compete? And who attacked him? Though, it might not be that hard to guess…

 

Asuka & Becky Lynch VS The IIconics!

Peyton Royce & Billie Kay may have cost Charlotte Flair her SmackDown Women’s Championship, but the Queen is busy going after her throne. That leaves the Empress and the Lass Kicker to take care of the Iconic Duo for her. Will Peyton & Billie have a #TrulyIIconic in-ring debut? Or are they not ready for Asuka and Straight Fire?

Before the match, the IIconics praise themselves for their looks. The camera loves Billie. No it loves Peyton. It loves both of them! But Becky stuck her nose where it doesn’t belong. Peyton impersonates Becky now, “Where are my lucky charms?” Spot on again! But then she teams with the nosy Empress of Tomorrow. Tomorrow? Fact check: if Charlotte beat Asuka and took the Undefeated Streak, and then the IIconics ended the Queen’s title reign, that makes them better than Asuka!

Science and math, it just makes sense. Empress of Tomorrow is now the Empress of Yesterday. Peyton & Billie are the future, but the future is interrupted!

The match begins with picture in picture as Asuka starts against Billie. Asuka has the fans on her side as they circle and tie up. Asuka wrenches Billie’s arm but Billie stomps a foot to then reverse the wrench. However, Asuka uses the ropes to acrobatically reverse back. Billie pulls Asuka’s hair but Asuka snapmares. Billie gest away, but narrowly avoids the roundhouse! Asuka teases her, to then hip attack! Asuka taunts Peyton then yansk on Billie’s arm. She brings Billie over and tags in Becky, Becky climbs up for teh ax handle. Becky kicks Billie then knocks her down with a calf kick. Billie bails out while Becky and Asuka fire up. Becky goes to the apron and hits Billie with a forearm, but Peyton comes over to attack. Becky bounces her off the apron, and then Asuka adds a sliding knee!

Asuka high fives Becky before Becky puts Billie back in the ring. Billie drops an elbow but misses, Becky waistlocks. Billie bucks Becky off and runs her over, but Becky arm-drags her back. Becky has Billie in the armlock, and even gives her a noogey. Tag to Asuka and Asuka kicks away at the leg. Asuka mule kicks but Billie grabs shorts to then yank Asuka down by her hair! Billie tags Peyton and Peyton keeps on Asuka. She slaps Asuka but that only riles Asuka up. Asuka grins but Peyton is afraid, and she should be, as Asuka unleashes strikes. Peyton reverses the whip but Asuka hits with the hip attack! We return to single picture as Asuka tags Becky back in.

Becky grabs Peyton but Peyton throws her down by her hair. Cover but Becky slips uot for teh Oklahoma roll, TWO. Becky kicks Peyton and whips but Peyton reverses again. Becky dodges to knock Peyton down with a forearm. Fans fire up for Becky, Becky misses her forearm in the corner but still gets the jump kick. She throws Peyton with a Becksploder! Peyton tags Billie but Billie runs into the drop toehold. Becky drags Billie up but Billie throws Becky down with an arm wringer. Billie chokes Becky at the ropes, then Peyton gets a cheap shot! Cover, ONE, but BIllie tags in. The IIconics work together on Becky’s arm, using the ref’s count to their advantage. Tag back to Billie while fans rally for Becky. The IIconics isolate Becky and put her in an armlock, but fans rally for the former champion.

Becky reaches while enduring a new armlock. She gets up but Billie knees low to whip her back into the IIconic corner. Billie taunts Asuka, but Becky boots her away. Becky fights out of the corner, double clotheslines bring Becky and Billie down. Fans rally again, hot tags to Peyton and Asuka! Asuka rallies with hip attack to Billie then a dropkick Peyton! She keeps going, blocking Peyton’s kick into an ankle lock! Peyton hops to Billie, but Becky breaks them up, then Asuka throws Peyton with a German Suplex!

Asuka runs to hip attack Peyton again. Tag to Becky, Becky and Asuka double whip Peyton for double hip toss, sliding enziguri and leg drop! Billie returns but then runs away, so Becky brings Peyton up. Peyton shoves Becky into Asuka, but Becky fights back with forearms and uppercuts. Becky whips corner to corner but Peyton puts her on the apron. Becky fights both IIconics off, but Peyton still sends her into the post. Roll up AND ropes, the IIconcis win!

Winners: The IIconics (Peyton & Billie), Peyton pinning

An #IIconicUpset with this win! The best friends from down under bring down two great former champions, will there be something great in the future for “the future”?

 

Backstage interview with AJ Styles.

Renee Young sees he’s in a good mood. Well why wouldn’t he be? Three days from The Greatest Royal Rumble and a rematch with Shinsuke Nakamura. But for right now, he’s happy because Shane McMahon gave him the chance to soften Nakamura up. Though, the con artist has Rusev Day backing him up. Is it a handicap match? No, Styles is lucky to have back-up of his own. Who? Oh, it’ll be #TooSweet. A major main event has been made, and it shouldn’t be too hard to guess who the Phenomenal One will have on his side.

 

Zelina Vega & Andrade “Cien” Almas speak.

“This is the only brand we’re worried about.” El Idolo, a third generation superstar and a former NXT Champion, Almas has the talent while Vega has the schemes. And Vega vows he will show the world why he deserves the spotlight.

 

The Usos talk backstage.

They’re preparing for a return from last week, but Naomi comes in to talk with her husband. Before she says anything, Jimmy wants her to promise she won’t end up ringside like last week. She is not, and she will not apologize, either. She was genuinely concerned. But does she trust him? Yes, of course. She loves him, but she saw “nothing” in the eyes of Harper & Rowan.

This may be their life, but Naomi has a bad feeling, and wants him to trust her. He knows, but don’t worry, Jey has his back both tonight and Friday. Jimmy says he’ll take care of Rowan, and gives Naomi a kiss for good luck. Will luck be enough going up against the Bludgeon Brothers?

 

Jimmy Uso w/ Jey VS Rowan w/ Harper!

As Jimmy told Naomi, he and his brother will take on these Bludgeon Brothers for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships in Saudi Arabia. Tonight is about gaining momentum towards that match, but will Jimmy end up coming to a screeching halt running into the Red Lamb of Doom?

The bell rings and Rowan dropkicks Jimmy down! Rowan clubs him down, then headbutts him down. Rowan chokes Jimmy against the ropes, Harper gets a cheap shot in! Jimmy is thrown to the apron while Jey goes after Harper, but misses his flying attack. Harper boots Jey down, but Jimmy dumps Rowan out. Jimmy builds speed and DIVES, but Rowan catches him to then scoop him. Jimmy slips out to put Rowan into the post! Rowan staggers and Jimmy climbs up, flying crossbody! Cover, TWO! Jimmy mule kicks and climbs up again, but Rowan shoves him off! Jimmy hits barriers face first. Rowan rolls out and comes around the corner to run Jimmy over! Rowan roars while fans boo and jeer.

The ref counts, Rowan puts Jimmy in the ring at 4. Rowan himself returns and drags Jimmy up. Fans rally for the Usos, but Rowan scoops Jimmy again. Naomi comes out in full entrance! Her #GlowTime distracts Harper & Rowan, SUPERKICK from Jey to Harper! Jey puts Harper into steel steps, and Jimmy dropkicks Rowan! Jimmy rolls him up, Jimmy wins!

Winner: Jimmy Uso by pinfall

Now the Usos can thank Naomi for helping even the score! However, Naomi won’t be in Arabia for the Greatest Royal Rumble. Will the Usos be able to survive when they have only themselves against the Bludgeon Brothers?

 

Renee Young presides over the SmackDown Women’s Championship contract signing.

Backlash will be where the title is defended in a rematch from Carmella’s Ms. Money in the Bank cash-in. The champion is introduced, but she snatches the mic to delay Charlotte’s introduction. “That is so disrespectful.” Fans echo “WOO~!”, to which Carmella also takes offense. Carmella is being introduced first? “In what world is it acceptable” to bring out champion before challenger? This isn’t Charlotte’s kingdom, it’s Carmella’s. So before it gets boring out here, Carmella has something to address: “I’m your champion. You’re booing me because none of you will ever know what it’s like to be a champion”. Carmella gave us a #Mellabration, played a FABULOUS highlight reel, but no one gave her an ovation.

But since she’s the champ, she’s going to play that highlight reel again. And this time, she demands they show her the respect she deserves! That means they will stand up and cheer for her. Play it!!

The same highlight reel does play, recapping Carmella’s Ms. Money in the Bank victory she managed “all by herself”. When it ends, the only one standing up to applaud is Corey Graves. Everyone else boos and jeers. Carmella is not accepting that, so she’s going to play that highlight reel again. And this time, the WWE Universe better stand up and cheer! The highlight reel plays again, but Charlotte interrupts with her entrance.

The former champion sits down while the current champion runs the title in her face. Renee wants Carmella to be professional but that’s not happening. Now that they’re both present, they can sign the contract. Fans “WOO~!” while Carmella continues to taunt Charlotte from across the table.

Charlotte keeps her cool, takes the pen, and signs her name. Then she gives out a proper “WOO~!” Carmella stands up and sticks the belt in her face again, so Charlotte slams Carmella’s face on the table! Then kicks the table over on Carmella! Renee leaves the ring while Charlotte brushes herself off. The Queen dumps the Princess down, but can she take the throne back at Backlash?

 

Backstage interview with…

Well, it was supposed to be Shinsuke Nakamura, but Aiden English answers the knock on the door. The Drama King says they’re not doing interviews. The trio of Rusev Day and the Rockstar are hush-hush about their Six-Man Tag, will they be able to work together against The Club?

 

Jeff Hardy VS Shelton Benjamin!

The Charismatic Enigma defeated the Gold Standard last week, in Hardy’s return to SmackDown. However, one match is not enough for Benjamin, who is a former United States Champion himself. Will Benjamin tie things up this close to Hardy’s title defense against Jinder Mahal? Or will Hardy go 2-0 already?

But wait, in return for the surprise last week, The Viper arrives while Hardy makes his entrance. Randy Orton, who is still promised a United States Championship match in his own right, decides to return the favor in full by taking this match from Hardy, too.

Randy Orton VS Shelton Benjamin!

The bell rings and Orton circles with Benjamin. They tie up, Benjamin powers Orton to a corner, but honors the break. Hardy watches ringside now as Benjamin goes for Orton’s leg. Orton gets to a corner for the break, and Benjamin backs off. The two circle again, tie up, and Benjamin gets a headlock. Orton powers out but Benjamin shoulders him down. Benjamin runs but Orton jumps over. Orton kicks but Benjamin blocks, Benjamin kicks but Orton blocks, and Orton ducks the dragon whip kick. Benjamin denies the RKO just in time, and the two circle again. Benjamin knees low then throws haymakers and stomps. The referee backs him off, Orton kicks back and throws European Uppercuts. Orton rocks Benjamin but drags him through the ropes, but Benjamin hotshots Orton back!

Benjamin brings Orton through ropes now, for a kick after kick after kick. He tops it off with a knee strike while we go picture in picture. Orton slowly stirs, but Benjamin fetches him. Benjamin bounces Orton’s head off the table, then stares Hardy down before throwing haymakers. Benjamin resets the count but Orton climbs up, only to get rocked with another knee! Orton falls to the floor, and Benjamin lets him be at the count’s mercy. Orton slowly drags himself up again, beating the count at 8. Benjamin is right on him with stomps, then drags Orton up into a chinlock. Orton endures the squeeze, slowly working his way up to his feet.

We go single picture again as Benjamin keeps on the squeeze. Fans rally for Orton and he fights back with body shots and headbutts, but Benjamin gets the dragon whip kick! Cover, TWO, but Benjamin keeps on Orton with a new chinlock. Orton works his way up again, reaching for ropes. He stands up and back suplexes Benjamin down! Orton is free of the hold and catches his breath while Benjamin rolls to ropes. They both stand up, Orton begins to rally with clotheslines. He dodges Benjamin and hits the spinning powerslam! Benjamin rolls to ropes, Orton brings him out, and hits the draping DDT!

Orton hears the voices in his head while fans fire up. Benjamin slips out of the ring, and Orton comes out to fetch him, bouncing him off the table. Hardy sees where Orton is going with Benjamin and clears out, not wanting trouble. Orton back suplexes Benjamin on the table instead!

They return into the ring, and Hardy watches a bit closer now, but a masked man chop blocks Hardy’s bad leg! Orton sees that man running away, but that man ends up cornered by security. The masked man goes into the ring, and Orton pulls the mask off to reveal Sunil Singh! Orton knows what to do with him: RKO! But Benjamin creeps up on Orton, PAY DIRT! Cover, Benjamin wins!

Winner: Benjamin, by pinfall

The Gold Standard pins the #1 Contender, while the current champion is limping. Will Hardy be ready for Mahal in Arabia? Will Benjamin find himself in line for that title should it stay on SmackDown?

 

The New Day feasts backstage.

They celebrate the launch of The Book of Booty, and toast with a glass of Booty-O’s! But then The Bar interrupts… Cesaro & Sheamus ruin the New Day’s appetites. But don’t worry, The Bar will win the Raw Tag Team Championships and go back to Raw. The New Day celebrate that! Well because obviously, the SmackDown Tag Division doesn’t stack up. They don’t just set the bar– No! Go away! Stop! “WE ARE THE BAR!” And they take pancakes away!

 

AJ Styles reunites with the Good Brothers.

The Club is back together! And it’s #TooSweet!

 

SAnitY is coming.

They vow to bring chaos and pain. “Fighting it is useless.” Who will fall to the anarchy Eric Young, Alexander Wolfe & Killian Dain bring to SmackDown?

 

Backstage interview with Daniel Bryan.

Any update on his injury? Just some precautions for his shoulder, but he’ll be good to go for the Greatest Royal Rumble. He’s come back from worse. What happened? He got blindsided by a cowardly 7 foot man. But Paige made it official, Bryan VS Cass at Backlash. Bryan’s going to take everything on head-on, and after winning the Greatest Royal Rumble itself, he’ll show Cass that “everyone is the same size when you’re on the mat and tapping out.”

 

Samoa Joe speaks.

“Nothing and no one is safe.” That goes for the Intercontinental Champion, Seth Rollins. Joe will use ladders to end “Seth Freakin’ Rollins”, The Miz, and Finn Balor. The title is already his, and then he’ll enjoy watching Brock Lesnar massacre Roman Reigns in a cage. And if by a miracle, Roman survives to become Universal Champion, Joe will take that title, too.

 

Shinsuke Nakamura, Rusev & Aiden English VS AJ Styles & The Good Brothers!

A reunion that’s #TooSweet goes up against a tough team in the King of Strong Style, the Bulgarian Lion & The Artiste. Can the Phenomenal One lead The Club in a victory for their SmackDown return?

The bell rings and Styles starts with Nakamura as a preview of their rematch. But after circling with Styles, Nakamura tags out to English. Styles just rocks Nakamura anyway before throwing English in. He tags Gallows and Gallows fires body shots on English. Gallows tags in Anderson and he keeps up the mugging, then tag to Styles for the low forearm. Styles tags in Gallows and Gallows gives a big back elbow to English before tagging Anderson back in for the jump kick. Rusev runs in but into a mule kick, then the boot! The Club controls the ring already, #TooSweet while we go to break.

SmackDown returns and Rusev runs into Anderson’s uppercut. Anderson tags in Styles and Styles gives Rusev the Phenomenal Blitz! He hits English but Nakamura avoids it. Styles slingshots but Nakamura evades, Rusev hits the MACHKA Kick! Rusev tags English in and English stomps on Styles. The referee backs English off and Styles flounders, but English is on him again with knees and stomps. English puts Styles in a chinlock, but fans duel while we go picture in picture. Styles stands up but English throws him down for more stomps. English brings him up and tags in Nakamura, Nakamura gives a body shot to the ribs. Nakamura puts Styles in a corner for knees to ribs, then Good Vibrations. Nakamura then snapmares to a cover, TWO.

We return single picture as Nakamura goes after the legs. He sits Styles up and kicks him back down, then drags him over to tag in Rusev. Rusev kicks Styles in the ribs, then scoops Styles and slams him down. Rusev runs for the elbow drop, cover, TWO. Fans rally for The Club, Rusev tags in English to whip him in for the back elbow. English feeds Styles to Rusev’s kick, English covers, TWO. English keeps on Styles with a chinlock, and sings mockingly that “He’s not going anywhere~!” The fans still rally for The Club and Styles fights his way up and out. English clubs Styles back, but runs into a dropkick! Both men are down, crawlign for their corners, hot tag to Rusev but he runs into the PELE! Styles crawls and tags in Gallows!

Gallows rallies on Engilsh with big lariats, then fires up for a big corner splash. Roundhouse rocks English, then Gallows pumphandle slams him down. Headbutt drop on top, cover, but Rusev breaks that. Anderson comes in but is sent into the post! Gallows clothesliens Rusev out but English tags in Nakamura. YAKUZA Kick for English but Nakamura chop blocks and KINSHASA to Gallows!

Cover, Nakamura wins for his team!

Winners: Nakamura, Rusev & English; Nakamura pinning.

But Styles finally gets at Nakamura! They brawl, the Phenomenal Blitz is blocked by a LOW BLOW! Nakamura takes aim at Styles, but Anderson jumps into the KINSHASA for Styles! The Machine Gun bites the proverbial bullet, but Nakamura kicks Styles back down before adding insult to injury. Nakamura drags Anderson up while Styles watches, and Nakamura shouts “C’MON!” He backs up, takes aim, and hits Anderson with another KINSHASA!! Nakamura mocks Styles’ concern for his friend, and has sent a vicious message to the champion. The Rockstar wants that WWE Championship, and he will give anyone and everyone a #Knee2Face to get it. Can Styles get revenge on Nakamura at the Greatest Royal Rumble?

 


 

My Thoughts:

A pretty good SmackDown, but holy crap there were too many commercial breaks. Ignoring that, this was itself a good go-home for Greatest Royal Rumble. Opening with Miz TV and the surprise guest of Big Cass was pretty good, and Cass seems to have improved in his promo skills. Finding Bryan beat up already was no surprise, and this Bryan VS Cass feud is already gearing up to be good. The IIconics give another great promo, and they have a really good match with Becky & Asuka. Their win was a nice surprise, and at least it was dirty so that Becky & Asuka aren’t really weakened by it. Between the various teams on both shows, it feels like WWE is gearing up to bring us that Women’s Tag Team Division and Championships. It’d probably have to be co-branded, but that works since all PPV’s are being co-branded now.

I like Naomi further involving herself in the story between Usos and Bludgeon Brothers, it is logical given the real life relationship of her and Jimmy. However, we know she won’t be able to help in the tag title match in Arabia, mostly because it’s in Arabia. Bludgeon Brothers will likely retain, and then they can move on to The New Day, or a new addition to SmackDown like SAnitY or the Good Brothers. Carmella was brilliant as a Heel in the contract signing segment, and Charlotte’s response was perfect. Whether or not there was more to be had, this still worked out for both sides.

It was pretty clever for Orton to return the favor on Hardy and snipe his match, and that match was pretty good. I didn’t think Sunil Singh would show up to go after Hardy but it makes sense given Mahal’s MO. Like Gable on Raw, Benjamin gets a someone surprise win, so either one is set up for a US Title shot once we all know which show has it. I like Nakamura’s new take on his theme, and the backstory that he had it done because he was sick of fans singing along. The Six Man Tag was a great main event, The Club finally looks capable in the ring. Nakamura stands tall in strong Heel fashion, he might get that belt at GRR.

My Score: 8.5/10


Always Use Your Head and visit the official Pro Wrestling Tees store for The Chairshot All t-shirt proceeds help support the advancement of your favorite hard-hitting wrestling website, The Chairshot!


Continue Reading

Connect on Facebook

Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending Today