All images courtesy of the WWE Network streaming service
- Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round Match: Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch VS Roderick Strong & ???; Strong & Pete Dunne win and advance to the semifinals.
- Ember Moon VS Aliyah; Ember wins.
- Raul Mendoza VS ???; no contest.
- Kassius Ohno VS Adam Cole; Cole wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
NXT returns to Full sail, but so does Tommaso Ciampa!
The Psycho Killer who screwed Johnny Gargano over returns to the home of NXT. Even here, fans boo and jeer, chanting “You Suck! You Suck!” while holding up Gargano emoji faces. Ciampa’s already faced this reception twice before, he shuts it out as he enters the ring. He grabs a mic, but fans chant “We Want Johnny!” Ciampa waits for them to quiet down, but they boo harder as he lifts the mic to his mouth. The chant of “Johnny Wrestling!” returns, just like the other two times Ciampa’s tried talking. But Ciampa finally explodes with “HE’S GONE!” Gargano won’t walk down the ramp, because he’s gone! Fans still boo and jeer, and return to chanting “You Suck! You Suck!” Ciampa takes a moment to calm himself, though fans keep booing. Now the fans chant “Ciampa Sucks!”, and he embraces it with another mic drop.
Ciampa exits the ring, though still very frustrated. The fans keep up the boos and jeers, but Ciampa stares them down one by one. He snatches a Gargano emoji and tears it up to then wipe his ass with it. He also snags the extra large one, and tears that right in the face of the fan who was holding it. Ciampa even gets in the face of an old woman who is a big Gargano fan. Ciampa snatches another extra large emoji from a fan in a lucha mask, but reveal! The “fan” was Gargano!
And Gargano attacks! Gargano goes right at Ciampa and the fans are loving it! But Gargano isn’t allowed in NXT, the security guards go after him to keep him back.. The fans want to “Let Them Fight!” but the guards drag Gargano out of the ring. Ciampa is reeling while Gargano is rabidly resisting. The guards still get Gargano past the barriers and towards the back while Ciampa tries to see where Gargano went. The fans chant “Johnny Wrestling!” even as Gargano is brought all the way to the back door. Gargano ends up in the parking lot while Ciampa checks his face. What kind of consequences will there be to a man who already lost his job?
An update on the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic.
While three teams have advanced into the second round, there is some unforeseen changes to the final opening round match. NXT throws things to Charly Caruso from the NXT Control Center, where she recaps the first three matches. There is some sad news, however, as Tyler Bate was found to be injured and therefore unable to compete in the tournament. Bate’s bad knee is bad news for Mustache Mountain, and hopefully he recovers quickly to return to competition, but there is good news! The tournament is open to a new duo, and Roderick Strong stepped up to request that chance. NXT General Manager, William Regal, heard Strong’s words and granted the request. Now the Messiah of the Backbreaker can enter to face Lorcan & Burch, provided he finds a partner.
The Undisputed Era speaks.
Adam Cole asks if Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish heard the “nonsense” from William Regal. He’s adding Roderick Strong to the Dusty Rhodes Classic! Of all people, he’s adding Roddy? Earth to Regal, Roddy doesn’t belong anywhere near that. Roddy isn’t a tag team guy, he’s a loser. Who would even tag with him? Regal could himself, but it won’t matter, because winning the Classic only signs you up to lose to “the baddest team”, reDRagon. And speaking of what doesn’t matter, Adam Cole takes on the so-called Knockout Artist, “talk about a night off.” Cole is so confident, he won’t even need O’Reilly & Fish ringside. Trust him, it’ll be pretty, and #ThatisUndisputed.
Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round Match: Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch VS Roderick Strong & ???
This pair of brawlers, one from Boston and the other from Great Britain, have been looking for a breakout match to bring them higher in NXT’s Tag Team Division. However, they only know one of their opponents going into this. Roddy is a tough customer, but who did he find to fight by his side?
IT’S PETE DUNNE!! The WWE United Kingdom Champion joins the Messiah of the Backbreaker in the Dusty Rhodes Classic! Will this body-bruising team take the tag tournament by storm?
The match starts with Strong and Lorcan, and they tie up fast and furious. Lorcan gets the waistlock but Strong rolls him with a headlock takeover. Lorcan headscissors, Strong moves around to roll Lorcan, and Strong gets a Queen Angelito stretch. The fans rally while Lorcan endures the hold, and slips out to switch places with Strong. Strong endures the headlock, Lorcan changes it to a wristlock, and then tags in Burch. Burch takes the hand-off and wrenches the wrist. Strong turns it around to his own wristlock and takedown.
Burch gets up but Dunne tags in, and he takes the hand-off to wrench that wrist. Dunne grabs the fingers and brings Burch down to torture him from hand to elbow. Dunne makes that a double wristlock cover, ONE, then a kip-up. Burch turns things around, trips up and rolls Dunne but misses the stomp. Dunne whips Burch but Burch catches that leg to drop Dunne. Burch wants the facelock, Lorcan and Strong rush in, and we end up with a tense stand-off between all four men. The referee works to keep the peace while we go to break.
NXT returns, and Dunne has Burch on the ground, holding the hammerlock in place with one leg and standing on Burch’s head with the other. Dunne grabs the free arm and bend sit back, along with the fingers. Burch writhes and shouts, but Dunne just turns things into a modified crossface. Cover, ONE, but Dunne keeps Burch from Lorcan. Dunne slaps Burch then shoves him, and tags in Strong. Strong stomps Burch, then brings him out, for the backbreaker! Cover, TWO, but Strong keeps on him as he tags in Dunne. They both suplex Burch for the gordbuster, then, double chops! Cover, TWO, but Dunne keeps his cool.
Dunne drags Burhc up, fans want that duolbe chop “One More Time.” Dunne chops Burch alone, but runs into a boot. Burch hops up and hits a big missile dropkick. Fans rally as both men crawl for their corners, hot tags to Strong and Lorcan. Lorcan chops, Strong forearms, and back again, neither man slowing down. Strong shoves Lorcan but Lorcan boots him back. Lorcan runs, dynamic dropkick! He keeps going, running European Upperct! Cover, TWO, so Lorcan runs to run Strong over with a wicked lariat. TWO, so Lorcan runs again, for the Blockbuster!
Another cover, TWO! Lorcan keeps fired up, and the fans join him. He drags Strong up, tags in Burch, and together they suplex Strong. Strong slips out and shoves Burch into Lorcan. Lorcan tumbles out while Burch runs into Strong’s boot and enziguri. Dunne tags in while Strong staggers back, to then hop up, and stomp out Burch’s arm! Dunne throws Burch with the X-Plex and covers, but Lorcan breaks it in time. Strong throws Lorcan right out, then tries for the wrecking ball dropkick, but Lorcan dodges to retaliate with a big EuroUpper! Dunne has Burch and slaps him, so Burch slaps back. Dunne slaps, Burch slaps, Dunne slaps, Burch SLAPS! Then Burch headbutts! The fans fire up while Burch stalks Dunne. He waistlock and German Suplexes, then Strong and Lorcan come in. Lorcan catches Strong for a Half ‘n’ Half suplex onto Dunne!
Burch covers, TWO, but into a Crossface! Strong returns but Lorcan is there, tackling Strong down into the Half Crab! Dunne endures while Strong turns over, Strong shoves Lorcan onto Burch to break the Crossface. Everyone is down, but Strong and Lorcan head for their corners while Dunne and Burch stand up. Burch throws a haymaker, Dunne retaliates with an enziguri! Dunne goes to chop, but Burch catches and counters into an exploder! Burch fires up but Strong tags in. Dunne catches Burch and tosses him to Strong for another backbreaker! Then, End of Heartache!
Dunne keeps Lorcan out of the ring with a sleeper hold, Strong covers, Strong & Dunne win! The unlikely duo wins in their first ever match together to advance into the semifinals. Can the Bruiserweight & The Back Breaker make it all the way to the end to earn an NXT Tag Team Championship match?
A star is coming to NXT.
The king of speed and master of flight, THE Richochet is coming soon. How fast will this human rocket rise to the top? Who will he topple over to get there?
Ember Moon VS Aliyah!
While the Prophecy of Flames has the Queen of Spades to worry about at TakeOver: New Orleans, Canada’s Catwoman wants to show up the #Shenom and make a name for herself. Can Ember keep from looking too far ahead and focus on the opponent right in front of her?
The bell rings, and the two share a quick but respectful low-five. They tie up, Ember arm-drags Aliyah but Aliyah arm-drags back. Aliyah gets the headlock takeover but Ember headscissors. Aliyah pops out and flicks her hair and Ember grins while the fans applaud. The two circle again, Aliyah gets the waistlock but Ember counters with a throw. Aliyah headscissors now and Ember pops out to put on a headlock of her own. Aliyah powers out but Ember goes to boot, only to be turned around and thrown down by her hair! The referee reprimands Aliyah, but The Cat’s Meow covers, TWO. But wait, Shayna Baszler is walking down the ramp.
The Submission Magician joins commentary while Aliyah runs Ember over with double ax handles. Cover, ONE, but Aliyah keeps on the champ while Shayna lets everyone know that while Ember’s champ, we all know Shayna is the real top woman in the division. Aliyha covers, TWO, but she puts Ember in a modified chinlock. The fans rally for Ember, and Ember fights her way out of the hold. She arm-drags Aliyah, then gets around for a waistlock roll up, ONE, but Ember keeps moving to hit a sliding complete shot!
Aliyah gets herself to a corner and Ember runs in but into boots. Aliyah hops up, crossbody, but Ember catches her! Ember looks over at commentary and says, “This is for you, Shayna!” before hitting a Samoan Drop! Ember roars at Shayna before hitting Aliyah with a handspring corner clothesline. She then climbs up, takes aim, and leaps for the Eclipse!
Cover, Ember wins! Shayna isn’t impressed, because she knows everyone else knows Ember is weak. Ember climbs up to hold up her NXT Women’s Championship, and Shayna stands on top of commentary to stare her down. Both women are ready to rip into each other, but who will be the one still standing atop the Women’s Division?
Raul Mendoza VS ???
The Cruiserweight Classic competitor is looking for that break-out moment, but instead, he gets attacked by the NXT Champion, Andrade “Cien” Almas!
El Idolo tosses Mendoza off the stage and leaves him writhing on the ground while he and Zelina Vega walk to the ring. Almas grabs a mic to call out Aleister Black for his comments last week. Almas speaks in Spanish that being champion makes HIM the best in NXT! But since Aleister didn’t respect Vega, he didn’t respect Almas. And Almas calls Aleister out, “you piece of shit!” Face Almas next week, Aleister, and pay for that disrespect! El Campeon is furious, but will he be able to get the revenge over respect? Or will he just #FadetoBlack even before Takeover: New Orleans?
NXT Universe, brace yourself for Lars Sullivan’s return.
An “abnormality of human genetics”, and a sheer force of destruction in human form, the Leviathan will return next week! Who will be set up in his path to be run over?
NXT General Manager, William Regal, speaks.
While the main event is up next, Regal would like to inform us that next week, he will have an announcement that will “change the landscape of NXT forever.” What could Regal be planning that is so powerful as to alter NXT?
Kassius Ohno VS Adam Cole!
This match came about via social media, where the Panama City Playboy declared himself “an uncrowned champion” in NXT, to which the Knockout Artist replied that if Cole wants some crowns, Ohno’s elbows and knees could knock out some teeth for him. Even so, Cole is so confident that he doesn’t need reDRagon by his side. Will Cole end up eating his words along with a few stiff strikes?
The bell rings and fans already duel between the two men as they circle. They tie up, Cole goes for the arm and gets the wristlock. Ohno reverses and throws Cole, then brings him up for a wristlock and lift. Ohno wrings Cole then wrenches, but Cole grabs hair. Cole shoves Ohno and knees him on the rebound, to then kick and forearm Ohno into a corner. Cole knees again, then runs and runs Ohno over, “BAYBAY!” The fans keep dueling while Cole runs, but Ohno hops up and over. Ohno runs, Cole ducks under to then jump up, only for Ohno to boot him out of the air! Cole gasps for air while the fans applaud, Ohno adds the back senton! Fans are fired up as Ohno brings Cole up for a stiff chop.
The dueling chants continue while Cole jawbreakers Ohno back to a corner. Cole runs in but Ohno puts him on the apron, but Cole’s leg jams and he stumbles down. Cole hobbles off, angry, and the referee checks on him. Ohno doesn’t care, he reaches for Cole through the ropes, but Cole leaps up to enziguri Ohno away! Cole was faking, and gets into the ring to rain down rights. He stomps Ohno out, as well, showing that his leg is just fine. Ohno is in trouble with Cole right on him while we go to break.
NXT returns and Cole keeps on Ohno at the ropes. He stalks Ohno around, wrenches the arm and whips, then back elbows Ohno. Ohno stays up so Cole bicycle kicks him down, cover, TWO! Cole keeps his cool, this is “too easy” as he hits a neckbreaker. Cover, TWO, but Cole still grins. He drags Ohno up and kicks him in the back to then stomp him on the mat. Cole kicks Ohno in the head but fans rally for Ohno. Cole brings Ohno down in a chinlock, but Ohno endures. Ohno feeds off the fans’ energy, then gets up, so Cole uses a backstabber! Cover, TWO, but Cole keeps his cool. “Forget it, Kassius, you’re a joke.” Cole says Ohno is a loser, because he’s Adam Cole BAYBAY! But no, he doesn’t like the fans using his catchphrase this time.
Cole goes to suplex Ohno but Ohno suplexes him, Cole slips out and gets a waistlock. Ohno bucks him off at the ropes, to ROCK him with a swift right! Cole goes down, eyes glazed, and fans rally while Ohno drags himself to a corner. Cole is up first but walks right into a knee. Ohno boots Cole’s clothesline away, then runs to rally with the ax bomber and another boot. He scoops Cole and slams him, then runs for the leaping leg drop! Cover, TWO, and Cole rolls to ropes. Ohno stalks him, rocking him with another right. He whips Cole but Cole reverses, so Ohno tumbles to the apron to boot back in. Cole is dazed, he gets the cyclone kick!
Cover, TWO, and Ohno can’t believe it. The fans applaud, though, they’re loving this. Cole stirs while the dueling chants start up again. Ohno looms over Cole and brings him up, but Cole blocks the suplex. Ohno rocks him with a forearm, but Cole asks “Is that all you got?!” Cole takes of his elbow pad and fires off forearms of his own! Cole runs, but into another boot from Ohno! Ohno goes to suplex, but Cole counters with the LAST SHOT!
Cover, TWO!! Ohno survives the brainbuster, and fans are loving it, chanting “NXT! NXT!” However, Cole is shocked and frustrated as he backs away to a corner. He watches Ohno stir while the fans rally again. Cole brings his knee pad down then runs, but Ohno counters and rolls Cole all the way into powerbomb position, to hotshot him on the ropes, then smack him with the forearm! Ohno takes off the elbow pad and runs, to hit Cole with the High Tension Elbow!
Cole tumbles all the way out of the ring and even to the stage. Ohno fetches Cole, dragging him up and over in the fireman’s carry. They return in the ring, Ohno covers, but Cole countrs to a crucifix! TWO, for a SUPERKICK! Then another SUPERKICK, then a third, AND a second Last Shot brainbuster!
But that’s not all, Cole still hits the Last Shot Shining Wizard!
Cover, Cole wins! It was tougher than he expected, but Cole still did it without the help of Fish & O’Reilly. Will this win help Cole go from uncrowned champion to undisputed champion?
Another packed episode for NXT, it’s really quite impressive. Opening with Ciampa’s third attempt at his promo was another stroke of genius. As I expected, he basically explodes and finally says anything, but Gargano appearing the way he did was done so perfectly, I think I marked out. Gargano going after Ciampa despite being “fired” is great, because it could lead to an “unsanctioned” match (aka No Disqualification) and these two can go all out with the brutality. I’d expect Gargano wins that to finally get back at Ciampa before they both move on from NXT. Then to go right into the Dusty Rhodes Classic was a nice surprise, especially with Strong’s surprise partner. Strong-Dunne did great as a team against Lorcan & Burch, and might even overcome SAnitY next week.
Great to see Ricochet is ready to debut soon, and keeping his name. Lars Sullivan is also returning, and just in time given Regal’s announcement. Word is that the announcement will be a new men’s title, and superstars like Lars, Ricochet and so many others are more than ready to hold that new title. Speaking of ready, Shayna Baszler is very ready to be NXT Women’s Champion. She’s already confident as a character, though her commentary might need work, but she seems primed to take that title from Ember now that it’s been a couple months. Then poor Mendoza, he wasn’t even a jobber but fodder for Almas. Almas was great being a heated Heel, and Aleister will show up next week, perhaps that will be the brawl we thought would happen at the contract signing.
That main event was great once again. It wasn’t as long as I expected but it was as competitive and hard-hitting. When Cole faked his bad leg, I thought that would be the moment for a new Undisputed Era member to attack, using the loophole that Cole only told Fish & O’Reilly to stay backstage. Instead, it was just a clever ruse for Cole to get a momentary edge. Same for when Ohno sent Cole out with the High Tension, but Cole toughed it out to turn things around. I also liked that Cole piled on Ohno with the old Last Shot and the new Last Shot, shows both Ohno’s toughness and Cole’s aggression. Cole himself is probably a shoe-in for the new NXT men’s title, but him having matches with guys like Lars, Ricochet, etc. will be great for that belt’s legitimacy out of the gate.
My Score: 8.5/10
AJPW Dream Power Series 2019 Results & Review (3/19/2019)
Mathew shows us some power! AJPW puts together a card that could rival anything all year. Does it live up to the expectations?
Mathew shows us some power! AJPW puts together a card that could rival anything all year. Does it live up to the expectations?
Welcome back to AJPW! We’re gonna talk about the last big show before this year’s Champions Carnival coming up in early April as we have a few title matches in this show that I couldn’t resist wanting to cover it.
We got some dealing with revenge along with one trying to make history. How’s this year’s Champions Carnival gonna shape up?
Let’s find out as we…dive right in.
- 0 Stars: Dave Meltzer
- 1 Star: Vince Russo
- 2 Stars: Tony Schiavone
- 3 Stars: Eric Bischoff
- 4 Stars: Bruce Prichard
- 5 Stars: Jim Cornette
Six Man Tag Team Match
Atsuki Aoyagi, Danji Tamura, & Hokuto Omori vs. Evolution (Atsushi Aoki, Hikaru Sato, & Yusuke Okada)
Review: Our opening contest is a six-man tag team match with our young lions, Atsuki Aoyagi, Danji Tamura, and Hokuto Omori taking on three members of Evolution, Atsushi Aoki, Hikaru Sato, and Yusuke Okada. Going up against three people from the junior division is a fair start to have them all fight each other in this tag bout and a better view of how the young guys are doing. Will Evolution school the young boys or will they somehow get one of the biggest wins in their starting careers?
As I’ve said, this match is mostly to showcase our future talent as they fight the vets of the game in the junior division. I do gotta admit that these three have definitely improved in the ring as they’re shaping up to be some of All Japan’s finest students. Evolution held off on their own and I’m glad they were their opponents for this match since they’re very easy to work with. Another thing I loved about the match is that they had a good amount of time instead of just being less than five minutes like how most matches will do. Yusuke and Hokuto are in the ring now and Yusuke would hit him with a Brainbuster for a two count and would quickly apply a Boston Crab onto him and Hokuto struggles to get to the ropes and once he does, Yusuke pulled him back in and would lock it in more as he would tap out to give Evolution the victory in a solid match.
Rating: Tony Schiavone and a half
Six Man Tag Team Match
Jun Akiyama, TAJIRI, & Ultimo Dragon vs. Black Menso-Re, Masanobu Fuchi, & Takao Omori
Review: We got another six-man tag team match here as Jun Akiyama, TAJIRI, and Ultimo Dragon will be taking on Black Menso-Re, Masanobu Fuchi, and Takao Omori. It’s been quite a while since we’ve seen Ultimo Dragon wrestling in All Japan, so I’ll never complain to see him in the ring. This is another match with the vets and Manso-Re for being a punching bag as it’ll most likely be a comedy style match. Which one of them will win?
Menso-Re starting with Ultimo Dragon as he wanted him first, but TAJIRI would slap Menso before the bell would ring and we would kick it off right now. They would do a little bit before Jun and Takao get tagged in, but we all care about TAJIRI and Fuchi getting tagged in now as Fuchi would try to get his hands on him. TAJIRI would be the sneaky heel with leaving the ring to sit with the crowd so he could avoid contact in the match. TAJIRI would get back in the ring only to tag in Ultimo as the crowd would just boo TAJIRI. Fuchi would do his antics with the punch to the forehead as the crowd eats it up but everything would backfire on Fuchi as he would miss a Dropkick to make the crowd boo Ultimo which is a shocker. Ultimo would kick Fuchi and attempt an Asai DDT but Fuchi would turn it around to a Backslide as Ultimo would kick out. Both TAJIRI and Jun would both make Fuchi miss a Dropkick and taunt him right after to make the crowd boo them. Ultimo would get Fuchi in the La Magistral and he gets the win for his team in a rather entertaining match.
Rating: Tony Schiavone and a quarter
Tag Team Match
NEXTREAM (Yoshitatsu & Yumi Aoyagi) vs. Sweeper (Jake Lee & Ryouji Sai)
Review: Our next match here is a tag team match as NEXTREAM members, Yoshitatsu and Yuma Aoyagi will be taking on members of Sweeper, Jake Lee and Ryouji Sai. Since Naoya is no longer Yumi’s partner, he’s gonna be paired off with Yoshitatsu this time around. Since all four of them are in the Champions Carnival, a win for either of them would give them some momentum leading to the tournament. Which one of these two teams will win and what will be the future payoff?
It seems like Yoshitatsu has a little gripe with Jake Lee in this match as he seems to be disgruntled when he was in the ring with him, especially when Jake would just best him during the first sequence with the chaining. Ryouji and Yuma are in the ring now and Ryouji with a series of kicks in the match and have him in a submission before Yoshi would break the hold and just stared at Jake again. Yuma is really growing out on his own as an individual and you can see that when he’s not partner with Naoya. Yuma would have Jake in a Headlock but Jake would attempt a Backdrop Driver as Yuma flipped it into a Crossbody as Jake kicked out at two. Once Jake kicked out, Yuma would try to turn the pin into a European Clutch as Jake kicked out at 2 as even the referee was shocked by this. Yuma would run into him as Jake kneed him in the face and hits him with a Backdrop Driver as he pinned Yuma for the victory.
Rating: Eric Bischoff and a quarter
Six Man Tag Team Match
Atsushi Maruyama, KAI, & Zeus vs. Bomber (Dylan James & Joe Doering,) & Francisco Akira
Review: We have another six-man tag team match taking place as Atsushi Maruyama, KAI, and Zeus team up to take on Dylan James, Joe Doering, and Francisco Akira. KAI recently failed at Dragon Gate to win the Open the Twin Gate Championships, so he could at least try to win for his team but I think Zeus has a lot on his plate when it comes to their opponent since Dylan James and Joe Doering are a strong team to beat and wants to try and look powerful leading into the Carnival. Which one of these two teams will win the match?
Zeus and Dylan would charge at each other right away to test their strengths with also some chops and a test of strength as the two appear to be evenly matched, which is no surprised. KAI gets tagged in and he calls Joe to get tagged in since he wants to fight him as Dylan honors that request and lets Joe have a turn on the fun. Joe would start to make him regret that decision as he had the upper hand on him at first but KAI would hit a few Dropkicks on him but Joe still wouldn’t go down as he tackled him and went for an Elbow Drop before KAI moved and quickly tagged in Atsushi. The juniors get a turn on the fun as Francisco showed more of his impressive ability. One problem I had with the match was that the last few minutes are incredibly sloppy with Atsushi missing most of his kicks to Joe in the corner, Francisco slipping on his Moonsault to the outside, which he thankfully caught himself and redid it again. The finish would be with Joe hitting Atsushi with the Powerbomb and it looked like he got knocked out as he took the pinfall despite his shoulder being kinda up, so it looked botched but the referee still has a job to do as Joe just left the ring and walked to the back possibly frustrated.
Rating: Eric Bischoff
World Junior Heavyweight Title Match
Koji Iwamoto (c) vs. Kotaro Suzuki
Review: Our first title match of the show is Koji Iwamoto defending his Junior Heavyweight Championship against Kotaro Suzuki. The two fought each other in the A Block of the Junior Battle of Glory Tournament where Kotaro defeated Koji in the match but would eventually fail to win as Koji would actually be the one to win it all. Koji decided to defend the title against Kotaro since it was only fair due to him winning the match and wants to avenge that loss. Will Koji be able to retain his title again or will Kotaro get the upper hand on him again?
Kotaro showed no mercy to the champion as fought him to the outside and Slingshots him into the turnbuckle post and DDT’s him face first into the mat as you hear the loud thud and damage has been done to Koji. Kotaro has beaten Koji before so he knows what he has to do to try and defeat him again as he worked on Koji’s neck a bit during the match and gets the heat from the crowd. I know Kotaro is a Freelancer and is mostly at NOAH right now due to being a champion there, I hope he does stick around a little bit longer since I feel like the division could really use him as he’s a very talented individual. Koji would try to outrun him after he dodged him to the outside and it appeared as if Kotaro would botch but he quickly caught himself and dived to the outside to land on Koji, getting the better of him again.
Koji would finally be able to get a comeback as he hits an STO onto the ring apron to knock Koji down and most of the time, he would try to hit the Koko no Geijutsu but Kotaro would hold his ground to make sure he wouldn’t hit it but Koji would be able to deliver a German Suplex and a Dragon Suplex. Kotaro would land a few punches before Koji tried to hit the move again, but Kotaro would hold his ground again and kick his leg out to work on his neck before landing Gory Bomb Special and tops it off with the La Magistral for the pin and Koji would kick out various times whenever Koji would try to roll out of it and was so close to having a new champion. Koji would just use this time to hit a couple of STO’s in a row to weaken him down a bit. Koji would go for it again but he catches him for a Back Suplex to save himself a bit. Kotaro would now hit not one but two Excaliburs onto him to try and end it as Koji would somehow kick out of it again. It all came down to his as Koji would attempt the Koko no Geijutsu again as Kotaro would stop himself to pin him for a two count and they both would spin around as Koji would hit it this him but he picked him up to hit the Koko no Geijutsu properly this time and pins him to retain the title! After the match, various people from the junior division would come out and it looks like they all want a shot at the Junior Heavyweight Championship but Koji would have to pick one of them to be his opponent. It does look like, however, that Koji doesn’t have a clear opponent right now as he left the ring but I guess we’ll see soon.
Rating: Eric Bischoff and three quarters
World Tag Team Title Match
Strong BJ (Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi) (c) vs. Violence Giant (Shuji Ishikawa & Suwama)
Review: Our next title match for this show is Strong BJ defending their titles against the team that they defeated them for, The Violence Giant. Strong BJ defeated them on January 13th to win the titles and after they retain their titles on the February 24 show, Violence Giant requested a rematch to bring the titles back home on their turf this time instead of the BJW show. If it’s anything like their previous match, it’s sure to be hard hitting and a not miss. Will Strong BJ remain on top or will Violence Giant bring the belts back home?
Shuji and Daisuke would be the ones to start off our match here with an incredible display of power as the two were unable to budge and they would tag in their respective partners. Suwama and Yuji were both also very hard-hitting as they would now fight outside of the ring as these two teams are making it personal. Strong BJ has been doing great work during this rivalry with the Violence Giant and they would even give Suwama a big beatdown but the former ace would even try his best to fight them off, even when he was on the corner and would kick Yuji to show his fighting spirit. Suwama would hit a Dropkick to save himself for a little bit and would tag in Shuji for the hot tag and Shuji does indeed come in hot with his Lariats, knees, anything he can throw along with the kitchen sink.
Yuji would brawl with Shuji to deliver some chops while Shuji would give him a couple of forearms and a headbutt to try and daze him but Yuji is pumped up and slams him down with a few Lariats. Once Yuji would hit another Lariat to Shuji, he would kick out at one that time around before getting hit with another one with a two count. What’s it gonna take to take Shuji down for good? Yuji would get to the top rope to hit the Splash and it looks like this could be it but Suwama would break the pinfall to save his partner. Strong BJ would have them up for the Torture Racks but they would get down for Suwama to hit a Back Suplex while Shuji hits a Dragon Suplex. Shuji is alone with Yuji again and would hit another Dragon Suplex and a Running Knee to get him out for another two count, he was so close! Shuji would pick Yuji up real quick for the Fire Thunder and goes for the pin as Daisuke breaks the pinfall this time around as Suwama would get Daisuke out of the ring. Shuji knew what he had to do to try and end it as he hits the Giants Slam and pins Yuji to win back the titles! Hell of a match and definitely topped their previous encounter at BJW. I would love to see Violence Giant get a fair and dominating run with this reign, can’t wait to see where this goes now.
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a half
— 全日本プロレス/alljapan (@alljapan_pw) March 14, 2019
Triple Crown Championship
Kento Miyahara (c) vs. Naoya Nomura
Review: This is our third title match and the main event of the show as we have Kento Miyahara defending his Triple Crown Championship against former NEXTREAM member, Naoya Nomura. On the February 24th show, Naoya Nomura would defeat Dylan James in a singles match and Kento Miyahara would have his second successful title defense against Suwama. After Kento would defeat Suwama, Naoya would come in to make the challenge to his stablemate and announce his departure from the NEXTREAM group in the process, leading him to also vacate the All Asia Tag Team Championship with Yuma Aoyagi. Kento is now 30 years old and while it’s his third title defense in this run, this will be his first time defending it while no longer in his twenties. If Kento can defeat Naoya, he’ll be the champion leading into the Champions Carnival and won’t defend the title until the tournament is over. Will Kento be able to retain it once again or does Naoya pull the surprise victory?
Kento came in here with a plan since he knew what he was gonna do to Naoya once he challenged him to this match, he didn’t wanna go easy on him despite being former teammates but he wants to see how badly Naoya wants the spotlight on him. They were fairly matched during the lock-up part of the match and they would start to fight outside for a little bit as Naoya would get Kento down as he taunts him when he got back in the ring. Naoya would hit him with a big forearm before going onto the apron to jump and Kento catches him with a knee and has him right where he wants him now. This is where Kento would just attack him with a few Headbutts as Naoya would try to deliver one to him but Kento gives him multiple ones as a counterattack and this is why you don’t mess with the champion.
Naoya would eventually make a comeback after being kicked around by Kento as he quickly got up to charge at him with a shoulder tackle and you can hear that too. He would hit a few more along with another forearm to the face as he goes for the Brainbuster but Kento would struggle to make sure he didn’t hit it and has Naoya over the ropes but wait, Naoya grabbed his leg to pull him over as he attempted a Death Valley Driver onto the apron as Kento jumped off to hit a Blackout. The two would be on the turnbuckle and Naoya gets behind him to attempt a German Suplex as Kento struggles, but Naoya would slam Kento’s head on the post and gets off the turnbuckle to hit the German Suplex as both men are down. Naoya would go to the top rope to hit the first Splash as Kento kicked out but Naoya would quickly get up again to hit one more as Kento still kicked out.
Kento would eventually hit him with a Blackout at full force and hits him with a German Suplex for another two count. Kento looks like he’s going for the Shutdown German Suplex Hold as Naoya would kick his knee out and hit him with a Spear and the two are down again. Kento would hit another Blackout on the back of his head and tries the German Suplex Hold once again as Naoya would still kick out at two as Kento is starting to get concerned with what he has to do now. Kento tried the Shutdown German Suplex Hold again as Naoya broke out of it and picked him up Fisherman style and dropped him on his head and picked him up for the Death Valley Driver as Kento fought him off but Naoya would hit him with a flurry of forearms to daze him and hits the Spear with the roll-up as Kento kicked out at two again! Naoya picked him back up but Kento would go back to delivering the Blackouts and it looks like Naoya is all out of fight as Kento finally hits the Shutdown German Suplex Hold to get the pinfall victory and his third successful title defense. Great match and a very impressive showing to Naoya but Kento is just still better than him right now. Kento will now officially be the Triple Crown Champion leading into the Champions Carnival. Three defenses down, eight more to go.
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a quarter
Overall: I thought it was a very solid show from top to bottom but the last three title matches were what sold it to me. I would highly recommend that you look out for those matches if you can find them online or subscribe to the streaming service and if you’re not already subscribed, what the hell is wrong with you? Get on that!
Favorite Match: Strong BJ (Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi) vs. Violence Giant (Shuji Ishikawa & Suwama)
Least Favorite Match: Jun Akiyama, TAJIRI, & Ultimo Dragon vs. Black Menso-Re, Masanobu Fuchi, & Takao Omori
Mitchell’s WWE NXT Results & Report! (3/20/19)
Triple H addresses an NXT Championship dilemma!
NXT sees the return of HHH, but under sad circumstances. The Game will address Tommaso Ciampa’s injury, and what happens with his precious championship!
- NXT Championship Contenders Fatal 5 Way: Ricochet VS Adam Cole VS Aleister Black VS Velveteen Dream VS Matt Riddle; Cole wins and will face Johnny Gargano for the vacated NXT Championship at TakeOver: New York.
PLAY BY PLAY
Triple H opens NXT!
Full Sail is happy to see The Game, but he comes out holding the NXT Championship. HHH goes to the ring and also picks up a mic. He takes a moment to hear the fans chant for him and NXT before getting to business. “From those cheers, I don’t have to remind you of just how special this place is.” The building, the environment, the fans. “NXT is something special.” It is here in NXT and the ring that “dreams can become possibilities.” For some, the dream starts in NXT. For others, it takes a long time, maybe years of scratching and clawing, going up and down a road, just to get to this ring. But in reality, for every superstar, their dream can end at any moment.
HHH was going to announce the main event of TakeOver: New York, an epic years in the making, of Johnny “Wrestling” Gargano VS Psycho Killer, Tommaso Ciampa. But the reality has made that impossible now. Ciampa’s dream is on hold, because he needs neck surgery. That surgery has taken place, and now Ciampa must relinquish the title. But the beauty of NXT is that when one dream ends, another begins. And that new dream begins right here! Gargano continues his dream and he WILL compete for the NXT Championship! But against who? We find that out tonight! Five men step into this ring! Ricochet VS Adam Cole VS Aleister Black VS Velveteen Dream VS Matt Riddle!
Those five men fight for an opportunity to live a dream in New York, on the biggest stage yet, and compete for the title against Gargano. It will be decisive in New York, 2 Out of 3 Falls! The winner will walk out the NEW NXT Champion! A major match of former, current and future champions, but who will have a match with Gargano to determine NXT’s future?
Backstage interview with various superstars.
The Finest thinks Cathy Kelly was waiting for him. But since he showed up, what is his reaction to the big news tonight? Well tonight’s main event will be great, but Kona Reeves knows it won’t be The Finest. The Forgotten Sons appear next, and they don’t care about tonight’s main event. They are more concerned with next week’s main event, because in case people have already forgotten, they’re in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic FINALS! Aleister Black & Ricochet need to not forget Steve Cutler & Wesley Blake are coming. They hope one of those two win, so that they’ll be too focused on something else. Then it’ll be that much easier for the Forgotten Sons to go on and win the NXT Tag Team Championships. Then no one will forget them ever again.
NXT Media shares Tommaso Ciampa’s trip to Birmingham, Alabama.
This is not the first time Ciampa has been to the WWE’s preferred surgical facility. Ciampa has had one knee and both shoulders, but now the neck leaves him no choice but to have another surgery. The pressure on his spinal cord could paralyze Ciampa, so this is not just for his career, but for his life as he knows it. There are various bone graftings and now it’s just about time. When and where will the greatest sports entertainer in NXT make another return?
NXT’s contenders speak.
The King of Flight and the Embodiment of the End are one of the most unexpected duos in the tag team division. They work together because they expect the best from each other. But there’s no misunderstanding, it will be every man for himself tonight.
Velveteen Dream is already the NXT North American Champion, but he wants the biggest spotlight possible. The way he sees it, tonight’s Fatal 5 Way will be #DreamOver. And when Dream wins it all, then Dream will just be the first ever dual champion, on the grandest stage in NXT history.
The Original King of Bros is still undefeated, and is stoked to have such a big opportunity so soon. Riddle worked his ace off to get here, and nothing will stop him from going to NXT TakeOver: New York and becoming the new NXT Champion, bro.
Adam Cole says he is the one who makes history in NXT, and no one is more deserving! The inaugural North American Champion wants to be the first to also have the top title. He takes on four of the best to then go to the Barclays Center. That’s the very place Cole made his debut and held that title high above his head. He’ll do it again, when the announcement is made that he is the new NXT Champion! And that is Undisputed!
Backstage interviews with The Sky Pirates.
Io Shirai & Kairi Sane are very excited for tonight’s main event to see who goes to TakeOver. And speaking of, they’re both going, too, because they’re in a Fatal 4 Way for the NXT Women’s Championship. Are they concerned the title and their friendship will get in the way? Not at all! May the best woman win! Io and Kairi both want the title, and will fight each other if they need to. “Gurl, uh-uh!”
Bianca Belair knows this isn’t her business, but this shouldn’t be a Fatal 4. Shayna got in the way and kept Bianca from beating Io. And this doesn’t have anything to do with the little pirate! But now it does, so in New York, The EST will run through both of them to become the new NXT Women’s Champion. No one can do anything about it, because she still feels Un-De-Fea-Ted. Io holds Kairi back while Bianca takes her leave. Whether it’s Bianca, Kairi or Io, will there be a new Women’s Champion alongside a new NXT Champion in New York?
NXT Championship Contenders Fatal 5 Way: Ricochet VS Adam Cole VS Aleister Black VS Velveteen Dream VS Matt Riddle!
The One and Only, Panama City Playboy, Dutch Destroyer, Patrick Clark Experience and Original Bro wage war like NXT has never seen! Johnny Wrestling awaits, who moves on to challenge him for the vacant throne?
The fans are already fired up for “All These Guys!” as the bell rings. Cole goes after Aleister than Ricochet while Riddle chases Dream. Riddle originally wanted after Dream for the North American title, so why not have that out here? Dream has other ideas as he throws Riddle into barriers then gets back in the ring. Aleister and Ricochet work together against Cole then Dream. Ricochet clotheslines Cole out but Cole drags Ricochet out. Dream rolls ALeister, TWO! Riddle returns but Dream throws him back out. Aleister waistlocks but Dream throws him off. Dream runs into Aleister’s boots then Aleister hops up. Aleister leaps but Dream gets under. Dream lifts Aleister but Aleister slips out. Aleister sweeps but Dream jumps over and rolls through! Aleister slips out again to cradle, TWO!
Dream runs into Aleister’s boot! Aleister runs but Cole trips and drags him out. Cole swings but gets Aleister’s kick! Aleister clibms up but Dream sends him back down. Ricochet mule kicks and whips Dream but Dream reverses. Ricochet rolls off the back and handsprings to headscissor and dropkick! Dream bails out but Riddle’s back. Riddle gut wrenches Ricochet, then holds on to do it again! And again! Full Sail is thunderous for the “Bro!” but Cole is after him. Riddle standing switches but gets an enziguri from Cole. Cole stomps a mudhole, then hits his pose BAYBAY! ALeister attacks but Cole reverses. The Unexpected Duo work together, leg sweep and standing moonsault! Cole gets away, and now the tag team phenomenons face each other. They shake hands and circle. But Cole disrupts it by shoving Ricochet into Aleister!
Aleister falls out and Cole stomps away on Ricochet. Cole hits a neckbreaker then covers, TWO! Cole keeps Riddle out with a right hand then goes after Ricochet. He snap suplexes and covers, TWO! Ricochet just escapes, but Cole boots Aleister back out! Cole drags Ricochet up for a big back suplex! Cover, TWO! Another close call but Cole can’t put Ricochet away. Cole goes after Dream but Dream shoulders in. Ricochet somersault shotgun dropkicks Cole! Dream knees Ricochet out then throws heavy hands on Cole. Dream whips but Cole reverses, only for Dream to slide out. Cole runs over but gets an uppercut! Dream climbs up and ax handles Alesiter out.
Dream tosses Cole out then climbs, to LEAP for a big ax handle! He puts Cole in fast and climbs back up. Purple Rain- Riddle gets Dream with a German! Aleister kicks but Riddle reverses! Riddle wants and gets the BroMission!! But Dream breaks it with a falling elbow! Dream stalks Riddle as fans fire up again. Dream tosses Riddle out and turns his attention to Aleister. Aleister fires off a strike fest, sweep to knee! Cole returns but Aleister is ready, two-for-one quebrada! Aleister roundhouses Dream, covers, TWO! Dream survives but Aleister keeps going. Aleister lifts Dream with his foot, but Cole drags Aleister out by the other foot. Cole sends Aleister into steel steps! Cole returns to the ring, only to meet Riddle. They were going to fight to see who contends for the North American title, so now they have it out!
Riddle gets the edge with open palm CHOP after CHOP! Cole stomps Riddle’s bare foot! But his superkick is caught, Riddle gets Cole in a Bromission! But again Dream breaks it up with a leaping ax handle! Dream haymakers Riddle but Riddle ROCKS Dream with that right! Cole hits Riddle now, but Riddle hits back. Dream, Riddle and Cole brawl on their knees in a triangle of strikes. They slowly stand, throwing big hands, forearms and uppercuts. Riddle CHOPS Dream, Cole BOOTS Riddle, Dream SUPERKICKS Cole! Ricochet returns, rolls and PELES Dream down! Cole SUPERKICKS Ricochet but Riddle KNEES Cole! Aleister returns and fires off with Riddle, double roundhouses take them both out! All five men are down and Full Sail reaches a fever pitch!
Ricochet staggers up and goes after Riddle. He puts the Bro in the drop zone then climbs up. Fans hope they “Fight Forever!” as Cole intercepts Ricochet. Cole climbs up to join Ricochet, but Ricochet resists. Dream adds on, climbing up to join them. They brawl and Aleister staggers over. Riddle follows, and they’re all on the second rope! It’s a Double Russian Leg Sweep SUPERPLEX! All five men are down again and fans know “This is Awesome!” The referee checks on everyone in turn and they’re all okay to continue. Fans build to a rally as the five slowly stir. Cole, Riddle and Ricochet bail out while Dream meets Aleister. Dream and Aleister trade haymakers on their knees. Aleister fires off hand after hand but Dream powers him to a corner. Aleister boots Dream away then hops up, Meteora!
Dream’s up but gets a roundhouse and a German! But Riddle sentons the bridge! Riddle drags Aleister up in a deadlift Fisherman Buster! Cradle, but Cole breaks it! Cole drags Riddle up but Riddle fires off fast hands! Riddle misses, gets a SUPERKICK, and Last Ride brainbuster! Cover, but Ricochet breaks it! Ricochet drags Cole up but Cole breaks free. Ricochet fakes Cole out for a boot and an ax kick! He keeps going, fireman’s carry but Cole rakes eyes! SUPERKICK to the front, SUPERKICK to the back! Cole brings the knee pad down but misses the Last Shot Wizard to get a Reverse-Rrana! Cole rolls all the way out and Ricochet can’t believe it. But Ricochet also sees a prime target, and FLIES with the Sasuke Special! Ricochet wipes Cole out but hurries to get back up.
Dream returns to the ring but so does Riddle. The would-be North American Championship showdown happens as Riddle throws chops. Riddle swings up and around Dream’s clothesline to powerbomb, but Dream slips out! Dream wants but Riddle denies the Sidewinder, to wring Dream out for a Bro Trigger! Riddle reels Dream into the BroMission! Dream flails but Cole yanks the ref out! No Disqualifications, but plenty of consequences as Riddle BOOTS Cole! Riddle turns around into BLACK MASS! Aleister turns around into Dream Valley Driver! Dream hurries to the top rope, but Ricochet’s right up for a SUPER STEINER onto Aleister and Cole! Ricochet hurries up for his own, SHOOTING STAR onto Riddle! Cover, but LAST SHOT!! Cole covers, Cole wins!!
Winner: Adam Cole, by pinfall; will face Johnny Gargano for the NXT Championship
You never see the shot that takes you down! Cole came outta nowhere, and now he’s going to New York City! Will Cole finally make the NXT Championship #Undisputed? Or will Gargano once again become Johnny Champion?
I’m going to call this episode a one match classic, because how else would you describe it? First it is unfortunate for Ciampa to again be out with an injury, and an injury as serious as the neck, so I’m sure I speak for everyone by saying get well soon, Psycho Killer. But HHH had such a great speech to open the night, and it is very true, this became a massive opportunity for another superstar to move up. The five men chosen were the right choices, and this made for an amazing Fatal 5 Way.
However, it makes a lot of sense for this to be Adam Cole’s night. Aleister & Ricochet are not only busy on the main roster, but they’re in the Dusty Rhodes Classic finals, where I would think they defeat the Forgotten Sons and move on to the War Raiders. It wouldn’t be very good to give those two double duty on TakeOver Friday and possibly something on Mania Sunday. Then Velveteen Dream VS Matt Riddle can and will still happen, and that is going to be great. It would’ve been too epic if Dream was trying for both titles, even if it’s Wrestlemania Weekend. Gargano VS Cole is going to be great and really could go either way, but I feel that since Gargano VS Ciampa was the plan, Gargano might’ve won that title to have his triumphant victory on the biggest WWE weekend of the year.
My Score: 8.6/10
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