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Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Live Report! (3/13/18)

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All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Rusev w/ Aiden English VS AJ Styles; Styles wins, by disqualification.
  • Big E & Jimmy Usos VS The Bludgeon Brothers; The Bludgeon Brothers win.
  • Bobby Roode VS Jinder Mahal w/ Sunil Singh; Mahal wins.
  • Naomi VS Carmella; Carmella wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

AJ Styles heads to the ring!

The Phenomenal One is still the WWE Champion after Fastlane’s fast and furious Six Pack Challenge, and Indianapolis is happy to see him! He welcomes them to “The House that AJ Styles Built!” The odds were against him, and he admits getting put through the commentary table by John Cena was bad. Styles started doubting himself, but he knew it wasn’t impossible. Everyone knows “when you fall down, suck it up!” If you want it bad enough, you’ll find a way. And clearly, Styles found his way! But better than that, Styles knows he’s headed to Wrestlemania. He remembers where he came from, and remembers most thought it was “unbelievable” Styles would even be in the WWE. The fact that he’d become WWE Champion was unbelievable. Him going to Wrestlemania as WWE Champion was unbelievable, but not impossible.

Styles’ Road to Wrestlemania has been a tough one, but fans tell him, “You Deserve It!” No, he earned it. The man standing across from him is the biggest Japanese superstar in WWE history, Shinsuke Nakamura! The Dream (Re)Match is coming, and Styles respects Nakamura because they have similar paths. But when it comes to the title, there’s no comparison. Styles knows he’s no different from anyone else, he’s WWE’s Every Man. At least, until he’s in the ring. When Styles is in the ring, “I am Phenomenal.” But speaking of his opponent, Shinsuke Nakamura appears!

The King of Strong Style won against The Bulgarian Lion at Fastlane to keep himself running at top speed towards this match with Styles. He steps into the ring with his future opponent, hears the dueling chants of “AJ Styles!” “Nakamura”, then says, “AJ, you’re a champion. Everyone likes you. Everyone likes me, too. I respect you. At Wrestlemania, dreams come true. My dream: knee to face. And I become champion!” Fans have mixed reactions to his claim, but then Rusev appears! He’s here for a match with the champ!

Rusev w/ Aiden English VS AJ Styles!

Rusev Day may have been rained on by the King of Strong Style, but there’s always today! Can Rusev ruin Styles’ run this close to Wrestlemania?

The bell rings and the two stare down while fans chant “Rusev Day!” Styles and Rusev circle then tie up, Rusev powering Styles back into a corner. Rusev lets Styles come back out and they circle again. Styles gets a waistlock while Shinsuke watches from ringside, but Rusev throws Styles off. Rusev wags his finger “No, no, no,” then circles with Styles again. Styles kicks Rusev’s leg, but Rusev walks it off. He backs Styles up but Styles kicks back again to get a headlock. Rusev powers out and runs Styles over! Styles gets to a corner while fans duel, “AJ Styles!” “Rusev Day!” Styles and Rusev circle and tie up but Rusev kicks low. Rusev rocks Stylse with a haymaker, then another. Rusev keeps on Styles in a corner with a knee, then runs in but hits buckles.

Styles rocks Rusev back with haymakers and then chops. Styles whips but Rusev holds ropes to kick back. Rusev reels Styles in for a lariat, then drags Styles up to run. Styles ducks under then jumps over to drop Rusev with a dropkick. Rusev springs up but Styles clotheslines him out of the ring! The fans fire up, and Styles takes aim. Slingshot forearm takes Rusev down again!

Styles drags Rusev up and into the ring, fans keep dueling, Styles kicks Rusev. Rusev stands up, blocks the suplex, then suplexes Styles back. Styles escapes and throws chops and haymakers. Rusev blocks another whip, then throat chops! Spinebuster from Rusev, cover, TWO. The champion is in trouble while we go picture in picture.

Rusev stalks Styles to a corner, then rams shoulders in. He backs off at the ref’s count and Styles slumps to the mat. Rusev drags him out onto the apron to then ram an elbow right into Styles’ head. Rusev drags Styles over to a corner, and throws the arm against the post! Styles writhes out to the floor, but Rusev stands over him. Rusev brings Styles up and into the ring, then covers, ONE. Rusev keeps going, targeting the arm with a keylock. He wrenches Styles’ arm, but Styles stands up to fight back with right hands. Styles breaks free, runs but is thrown with a body drop! Rusev roars as he looms over Styles menacingly. Rusev brings Styles up and hatch suplexes him over, then stalks him to the ropes. The Bulgarian Brute sits Styles up to kick him in the back, then covers, TWO.

Rusev grows annoyed, but he toys with Styles while he’s down. He smacks Styles until he falls to the floor, but Styels springs up to rush back in and attack! Styles unleashes right hands, then whips. Rusev reverses, and dropkicks Styles! Rusev celebrates his feat of agility and we go to single picture. The fans duel with chants, but Rusev keeps on Styles by lifting him to the top rope. Rusev smacks Styles and Styles almost falls all the way off! Another right hand and Styles still has to cling to the top rope. Rusev climbs up, prepares a superplex, but Styles slips under to trip Rusev up! Fans fire up while Styles recovers. English grows worried for Rusev while Styles unleashes the Phenomenal Blitz! Sliding forearm, and Styles fires up.

Styles runs corner to corner, big clotheslines! Then the fireman’s carry lift but Rusev slips out. Rusev shoves Styles, styles ducks the kick, another try at the fireman’s but still not enough. Rusev shoves Styles again, and hits a pop-up knee to the stomach, followed by a roundhouse!

Styles goes down, Rusev covers, TWO! Rusev stands up and stomps the mat, preparing for his kick, but misses and gets Styles PELE! Styles lifts in the fireman’s, USHIGOROSHI! Styles’ own knee bothers him, but he keeps moving. He brings Rusev up and around for Clash position, somehow lifts Rusev, but Rusev gets the lag to drag Styles for the Accolade, only for Styles to go for his Calf Crusher! Rusev grabs the ropes, Styles keeps trying, and gets teh roll! Englihsh comes in, attacks Styles, the match is thrown out! English stomps and stomps, then throws hands, but Nakamura slowly rises.

The King of Strong Style sees Engilsh bring Rusev up for another roundhouse, then he comes in to strike! He takes out English with the roundhouse, then a KINSHASA for Rusev!

Nakamura nods to Styles as he stands tall. He leavees without needing thanks, this was all to keep the dream match alive. Will Styles be able to keep himself in good shape to pay Nakamura back?

 

Backstage interview with Big E.

After the carnage wrought by the Bludgeon Brothers, Harper & Rowan expect the survivors to answer an open challenge. Big E says that he wishes the New Day were 5-time champions, or conspiring to fill Corey Graves’ car with pancake batter, but he isn’t. Harper & Rowan didn’t just take away the New Day’s chance at another title reign, they tried ending careers. Kofi & Woods will be back, but Big E will hold down the fort for his team. Jimmy Usos shows up and says he won’t be alone. Jey got taken out, too, and Jimmy has beef with The Bludgeon Brothers, too. The Usos and New Day can settle their differences later, now is about Harper & Rowan. Can Jimmy & Big E get even with the most destructive duo in recent history?

 

AJ Styles finds Nakamura backstage.

He lets the Rockstar know that he didn’t need his help at Fastlane, and he didn’t need his help out there. Nakamura says that it looked like he did. “But don’t worry, I’ll help every time until Wrestlemania. So then I’ll beat you with a knee to face.”

 

Big E & Jimmy Usos VS The Bludgeon Brothers!

Things did not go the way anyone expected at Fastlane for the SmackDown Tag Team Championship match. Harper & Rowan wreaked havoc on both champion and challenger teams, sidelining three of the five men in one fell swoop. Now rivals must team together to remove the upstart behemoths from the equation.

And to start, they bring the fight to Harper & Rowan during their entrances! Rowan goes down, then Harper is put into the LED! Jimmy & E then grab steel chairs to equalize things with Harper’s & Rowan’s hammers! Things are tense as the four men stare down, and the referee just gets out of the way.

Harper & Rowan stand in the ring with Jimmy & Big E, and the tension mounts, and the fans are fired up! The fight breaks out, but the chairs are swatted away. Jimmy & Big E get clear before taking hammers to heads, we go to break while things cool off.

SmackDown returns and the match is actually a match now as Big E starts with Harper. The bell rings and they both go at each other! Big E rams Harper in a corner, then stomps away on him. He runs but into the Scrapbuster! Harper tags Rowan, and Big Red splashes Big E! Rowan taunts Jimmy, then turns to Big E to stomp a mudhole into him. He drags Big E up for a big scoop slam, then steps on him before tagging in Harper. Harper mule kicks Big E, then uppercuts him into a corner. The fans chant for Uso & E, but Harper whips Big E corner to corner. Big E elbows back, hot tag to Jimmy!

Jimmy hits back, jumps over then hits again. Jimmy speeds things up to forearm then mule kick and uppercut to another mule kick. Harper blocks teh third, but Jimmy elbows him away. Jimmy goes up, Whisper in the Wind! SUPERKICK for Rowan, then Jimmy runs, but into Harper’s boot! Harper throws Big E out then Rowan throws Big E into steel steps! Tag to Rowan, then the slap to fire him up for the corner to corner splash! Full-nelson lift, Killer Bomb!! The Bludgeon Brothers win!

The Tag Apocalypse of SmackDown isn’t over, Harper rams Big E in the barriers, then feeds him to Rowan’s body check! They leave Jimmy for dead, is there any hope of survival in the Division after this?

 

Backstage interview with Sami Zayn.

Who does Sami blame for not becoming WWE Champion? Well that’s a load question. The obvious answer is Shane McMahon. Sami was pinning Kevin Owens but Shane pulled him off before three. Yet, Sami can’t completely blame Shane, he also blames Kevin. Kevin is the target of Shane’s obsession, and it made Sami “guilty by association.” Sami admits that Kevin is talented, funny and has always been by his side, but he’s also “a self-absorbed, egomaniac.” Sami played his game perfectly, yet because of Kevin and Shane, he paid the price. That is a price Sami will never, ever pay again, not for anyone. Can the Underdog from the Underground turn it around on the home stretch of the Road to Wrestlemania?

 

Charlotte Flair heads to the ring!

The Queen of Flair held onto her SmackDown Women’s Championship against the Squad Leader, Ruby Riott, but then she-like the rest of the WWE Universe-got a great surprise. The Empress of Tomorrow won the inaugural Women’s Royal Rumble and therefore had her choice of Women’s Champions in the WWE. Yet she had gone for quite some time without naming who she wanted. That is, until she appeared at Fastlane to be face to face with her choice and issue the challenge in person! Charlotte says she’s honored to be the one chosen, so she wants to be here to meet her “woman to woman.” With that, Asuka makes her way out to the ring.

The Queen welcomes the Empress, and says “be careful what you wish for.” Asuka thanks Charlotte, and Charlotte says that everyoen else always tells her two things: Congratulations; and what would happen if you faced Asuka? The undefeated Empress is almost untouchable, but what would happen to her if she went 1v1 with The Queen? Who bows down? We’ll see at Wrestlemania. “Iron sharpens iron”, and Charlotte saw Asuka win. Charlotte hoped Asuka would choose her, to bring this challenge. When Asuka’s music hit, Charlotte got goosebumps over this “once in a lifetime opportunity”. Charlotte admits she’s never faced anyone like Asuka, but says Asuka’s never faced anyone like Charlotte. Charlotte vows to end the Streak and cement her Legacy. “WOO~!”

Asuka responds with, “I chose you because I like a challenge!” Charlotte is the Queen, but she’s the Empress. “And Asuka bows to no one.” That’s because “no one is ready for Asuka!” The two stare down and even grin, but who will be the one smiling after a SmackDown Women’s Championship dream match!?

 

Randy Orton appears!

The Viper is now the United States and Grand Slam Champion after hitting an RKO #outtanowhere on the GLORIOUS Bobby Roode. He also wants to keep an eye on Roode and the Modern Day Maharaja in their match up next. But before that, Orton says that “I’ve been called many different things throughout the course of my career. Some good, some not so good, but the one thing that I have never been called until now, is United States Champion.” Winning the title puts Orton on a short list of elite superstars, and that’s a list he cares about. Roode proved himself a tough competitor and has Orton’s respect. But, the title is Orton’s now, and he’s taking it to Wrestlemania, and no one will stop him. That’s when Bobby Roode makes his entrance!

Roode congratulates Orton, but counters with talks of a rematch. That rematch is going to happen on the Grandest Stage of Them All, Wrestlemania! And when Roode regains his United States Championship, it will be “Absolutely GLORIOUS!” That’s when Jinder Mahal appears to say, “I would like to also congratulate Randy Orton.” The fans cheer but Mahal continues to say that Orton has been here for an eternity, yet finally did it. But Roode has been here for less than a cup of coffee, yet got it before him. That’s the truth. Forget Wrestlemania and rematches, Mahal vows to beat Roode just like he did Orton. Orton, please sit and watch as Mahal “inflicts carnage” on Roode.

Bobby Roode VS Jinder Mahal w/ Sunil Singh!

Roode’s goal of becoming the greatest United States Champion in WWE History may be delayed, but he won’t let Mahal interfere in his mission to get the title back. Can Roode once again be GLORIOUS and roll on towards a championship rematch?

The bell rings, Orton takes a seat and Roode circles with Mahal. Mahal kicks and punches Roode to a corner then whips corner to corner. Roode goes up and ever, goes for the DDT but Mahal narrowly escapes. Orton smirks at Mahal while we go picture in picture. Mahal takes his time returning into the ring, but then drags Roode out. Roode punches back then bounces Mahal off the apron before putting him back in the ring. Roode keeps on Mahal with punches and kicks, then a chop. He chops Mahal more, then whips, but Mahla reverses. Roode kicks Mahal away, but Mahal responds with the kitchen sink knee and a dropkick to the back. Mahal covers, TWO, and Roode gets to a corner.

Mahal stomps a mudhole into Roode, then grinds in his knee. He backs off at the ref’s count, but then drags Roode up to choke him on the ropes. He backs off again to stomp and give springboard knee drops over and over. The referee reprimands Mahal, but Mahal sits Roode up to drive in a knee to the back. Mahal puts on a half-nelson chinbar while we go back to single picture. He wrenches and twists Roode, but fans rally and Roode stands up. Roode fights out of the hold, then throws haymakers. Mahal puts the headlock on, Roode powers out and things speed up, but Mahal runs into Roode and their heads collide! Both men go down, dazed from the impact.

The fans rally for Roode while he and Mahal stand up, and Roode blocks to counter with punches and chops. Roode whips Mahal, Mahal reverses, but Roode still rallies with forearms and lariats. He runs and clotheslines Mahal in a corner, then hits the neckbreaker. Roode climbs up to the top rope, takes aim, and flies for the clothesline! Then he fires up and winds it up, GLORIOUS Pose, to GLORIOUS– No, Mahal powers him back. Roode boots him away, then hits the GLORIOUS Blockbuster!

TWO! Mahal gets to ropes, Roode walks over, and Mahal sends Roode to the outside. Roode comes back, but Mahal boots him right down! Cover, TWO, and Mahal can’t believe it.

Even so, he grins as he stalks Roode, preparing for his finish. He drags Roode up, but Roode slips out to try his DDT. Mahal body drops Roode but Roode sunset flips and high stacks, TWO! Roode runs but into a back elbow, to then SPINEBUSTER Mahal! Cover, TWO, and even Orton is a bit surprised by that. Roode gets up to climb up but Sunil Singh distracts. Roode shoves Singh into a post, then climbs over him. Mahal hits the ropes to trip Roode up! KHALLAS! Mahal wins, just as he said!

But then Orton slides in, to RKO Mahal!

The Viper stands tall with his championship, will he keep his word to keep that title?

 

Backstage interview with Kevin Owens.

What is his response to Sami Zayn saying Kevin is to blame for why Sami isn’t champion? Kevin’s to blame?! Why can’t Sami see this is is all Shane’s fault. Sami is being selfish, because Kevin got screwed over, too, and first! Kevin would be WWE Champion right now, and Sami wouldn’t have been screwed at all. And what about his stunt, pretending to let Kevin win to then get a cheap victory? Kevin is sick of it all. Sami is a liar, manipulator and passing blame.

Kevin is the rightful champion, but he’s not because of Shane! Like all McMahons, Shane insists on having the spotlight! Why did we need Shane at ringside? If Sami can’t see Shane for who he really is, then Kevin will “open his eyes up to the truth.” What will happen when/if Kevin and Sami meet in person?

 

Naomi VS Carmella!

Ms. Money in the Bank got the pin on Lady Glow in a tag match she and the Queen of Harts won over Naomi and Becky Lynch. Can Naomi even things up with only weeks left before Wrestlemania and the inaugural Fabulous Moolah Memorial Battle Royal?

The bell rings and they tie up, Naomi puts Carmella in a corner. They pull hair then break, but Carmella kicks low. She throws Naomi into the corner, then out of the corner, all via the hair. Carmella grinds Naomi’s face into the mat, and calls her “a nobody!” She bounces Naomi off the mat, then covers, TWO, so she stands on Naomi’s hair and pulls! Carmella toys with Naomi as she brags about being Ms. MITB. She puts Naomi in a corner to bump her off her boot then stretches Naomi back before shoving her into a buckle. Carmella even wraps Naomi’s hair around the rope to pull on it! Naomi protests but Carmella keeps going until the count of 4.

Carmella embraces the heat then moonwalks, but Naomi runs out for a Thesz Press and fast hands! Naomi gets her back for all the hair pulling and face smearing, but then Carmella slaps her! Naomi slaps back, and again and again and again! Carmella screams, Naomi backs off, to then run Carmella over with clotheslines. Naomi blocks a kick, Carmella ducks kicks, but not that knee! The fans fire up with Naomi, and Naomi springboards, but Carmella trips her up to then hit a draping neckbreaker! High stack cover, Carmella wins! The #ModernDayMoolah rolls on towards the battle royal, can she cash in big with two history making moments at Wrestlemania?

 

Shane McMahon heads to the ring!

The SmackDown Commissioner promised a major announcement for Wrestlemania, and speculation has been running wild. Shane O’Mac says hey to Indianapolis before saying “it’s no secret that over the last several months”, he’s had trouble with both Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn. He isn’t apologizing, because Kevin started this when he attacked Shane’s father, Vince McMahon. Vince may not be the nicest guy, but imagine if it was your father. What would anyone else do? That’s what led to Shane VS Kevin at Hell in a Cell, but then Sami Zayn got involved. That led to more trouble with him going after Sami & Kevin with “conduct unbecoming of SmackDown’s Commissioner.” Shane has talked things over, such as with Daniel Bryan-who will return next week, not tonight-because after tonight, Shane is taking an indefinite leave of absence.

But before that, Shane has one more announcement. Leading up to Fastlane and from events tonight, it will be Kevin Owens VS Sami Zayn at Wrestlemania! Simple as that, Shane washes his hands of this mess. However, Kevin Owens appears to respond! Finally something Kevin agrees with. He wishes Shane the best of luck. And as for that ‘Mania match, he can just beat up Sami whenever he wants. Speaking of, Sami comes out to respond, as well!

Sami gets in Kevin’s face, then turns to Shane and says, “You are just doing this because it made you so happy to hear fans” cheering for two friends beating each other up. If he’s basing things off what the fans think, then thank GOD Shane is leaving.

This is baffling. Shane gave them the chance to face each other, on the Grandest Stage of Them All, but they’re upset. Oh they appreciate it, but they know he’ll also appreciate this beat down! They go after him 2v1, but Shane fights them off! Only for a moment, though, as Kevin drags Shane off Sami for Sami to mug Shane. The Best Frenemies put Shane in a corner, and Sami hits the HELLUVA KICK! But that’s not all, Sami feeds Shane to the Pop-Up Powerbomb!

Kevin & Sami see the referees coming in and they go after them now! #Kami are reunited as they rip into officials and the Commissioner, and Sami gets a chair! They set it up and put Shane through it, to then ram his throat into the post!!

Shane’s eyes are glazed over and he wheezes for air, but #Kami drags him up the ramp and to the stage, then to the back. They drag him all around, to give him a send-off. Sami drags Shane up for Kevin, and together they powerbomb Shane on spare frames!!

Shane crumples and groans in pain and #Kami leave him to the medics. Forget the match for ‘Mania, will Kevin & Sami even be employed after this!?

 

My Thoughts:

This was not the episode of SmackDown to follow a great Fastlane with. Styles’ interaction with Nakamura was good, and Styles’ match with Rusev was also pretty good, as was Nakamura bailing Styles out to emphasize their friendly rivalry. I wonder if Nakamura’s promise to keep Styles safe until Wrestlemania will result in one or two tag team matches of Styles & Nakamura VS Rusev Day or some other team. And I liked that Big E and Jimmy Uso teamed up in an attempt to get back at Harper & Rowan, but it was more or less obvious that it wasn’t going to work in their favor. If kayfabe says Big E is too hurt for ‘Mania and Jey is still sidelined, I wonder if the titles would be vacated and then The Bludgeon Brothers could just demolish all the other SmackDown teams to win hands down.

Charlotte and Asuka had a good promo showdown, and Asuka was smoother tonight than she’s been on Raw. Rumor has it they hold her English vocabulary back, but whether that’s true or not, maybe being on SmackDown where there isn’t a Mean Girl style Heel will benefit Asuka’s promos. Orton had a decent promo in his own right, as did Roode and Mahal when they came out to stake their claims to the US Title. The Mahal-Roode match was alright, but once again, a Singh is the key to Mahal winning. Orton gets payback, though, and stands tall. I would’ve instead hoped someone in management just skipped ahead and announced a triple threat, to give us a US Championship round robin to fill out the last few weeks.

No offense to Carmella and Naomi, but how were they the last match of the night? I would’ve put this as the opener and made either the tag team or Styles segment in its place. Good for Carmella to be on a roll like this, but I wonder if it’s just setting her up to fail. Then closing with Shane, hooray~ (sarcasm). He said he’s stepping down, but now he might be hospitalized given that semi-surprising beat down. I’d think instead of Kevin VS Sami, this will now shift into Kevin & Sami VS Shane & ???. Shane might choose someone rumored for a return, and that could be anyone from Lashley to Jericho. Given everyone’s history, Jericho seems like a great choice to take on Kevin & Sami in a grudge match.

My Score: 7.5/10

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Mitchell’s WWE 205 Live Results & Report! (12/12/18)

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205 Live = Cruiserweight Division

The Cruiserweight Champion and challenger are set to face off at TLC, but first warm-up in Vegas! Will Buddy Murphy or Cedric Alexander come out ahead?

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Buddy Murphy VS Noam Dar Gran Metalik; Murphy wins.
  • Cedric Alexander VS Tony Nese; Alexander wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

Drake Maverick sets the scene for tonight!

TLC will see Buddy Murphy defend the Cruiserweight Championship against Cedric Alexander in a long awaited rematch from Super Show-Down! The champion and challenger both have something to prove to the other, and allowed Maverick himself to choose their opponents for tonight. The Scottish Supernova was eager to step up and get back at Murphy for screwing him in a match with Tony Nese. But Noam Dar is unfortunately not cleared to compete. Therefore, it will be the Juggernaut taking on the King of the Ropes, Gran Metalik! Metalik himself is eager to show he can hang with the champion.

As for the Soul of 205 Live, he still gets his match with The Premier Athlete. Alexander and Nese have gone back and forth in their own rivalry that dates back to the beginning of this brand. Nese gave Alexander a defeat the 205 Live after Alexander lost the title, and wants to be a major road block to Alexander’s rematch. “With such a small margin for error between Cedric Alexander and Buddy Murphy”, who will make it to TLC riding high on a wave of momentum?

 

Buddy Murphy VS Gran Metalik!

The Juggernaut wants to show the tag team victory the Heart & Soul of 205 Live have over him means nothing by taking on anyone tonight. The King of the Ropes wants to ride the high his Lucha House Party amigos reached in their Tornado Tag victory last week. Murphy taking on this match is a huge gamble, but it is Las Vegas, after all. Will Murphy hit the jackpot or bust this close to TLC?

The bell rings and Murphy circles with Metalik. They tie up and Murphy powers Metalik to a corner. Murphy backs off but then pie faces Metalik. Metalik shoves Murphy then dodges to egg Murphy on. They circle again and Murphy waistlocks. Metalik standing switches but Murphy pries his way out to a wristlock. Fans chant “Lucha! Lucha!” for Metalik as Murphy yanks on his arm. Murphy brings Metalik to the mat and grinds an elbow into the shoulder. Metalik flips through and reverses, but Murphy reverses back, only for Metalik to reverse again, but Murphy wrangles him back to the mat. Metalik kips up but Murphy drives him back down, so Metalik headscissors. Murphy pops out but Metalik sweeps and covers. ONE and Murphy sweeps to cover, ONE. Metalik handsprings again and fans fire up.

The “Lucha! Lucha!” chants return but Murphy keeps his cool. Murphy and Metalik tie up again and Murphy kicks low. Murphy clubs Metalik then wrenches into a back suplex. Metalik slips out and speeds up to handspring past Murphy. Metalik headscissors and throws Murphy out. Now Metalik builds speed and FLIES! Direct hit on Murphy and the champ goes down! Fans chant for Metalik as he gets up and goes after Murphy. Murphy shoves him away then knees low, but Metalik sends him into barriers. Metalik stalks Murphy from the barrier’s edge, to leap for another headscissor! The fans fire up as Metalik puts Murphy in the ring. Cover, TWO! Metalik keeps the fans going as he goes to Murphy. Murphy yanks Metalik into buckles!

Murphy gets up and puts Metalik on the top rope. He climbs up to join Metalik but Metalik fights back. Metalik shoves Murphy down but Murphy’s right back up! Metalik shoves him away again, and boots him back. Murphy staggers, but catches Metalik’s leap into a suplex! Both men are down but fans fire up. Murphy crawls to a cover, TWO! Metalik shows his toughness but Murphy keeps his cool. Murphy drags Metalik up to throw him out. He leaves Metalik for dead as the count climbs. Metalik crawls back at 6, and gets in at 8! Murphy stomps Metalik out, then throws a heavy right hand! Cover, TWO! Murphy grows frustrated but he puts Metalik in a grounded stretch.

Fans rally as Metalik endures the forearm in the face. Metalik pries his way out but Murphy drives in elbows to the chest! Cover, TWO! Murphy wraps Metalik up in a chinlock, but Metalik fights his way up. Metalik rams Murphy into buckles while throwing in body shots. Metalik gets free but walks into a boot! Murphy drags Metalik up and throws him out, but Metalik stays on the apron. Murphy is annoyed as he goes back over to Metalik. He brings Metalik up but Metalik swing kicks him away! Metalik aims and springboards, big crossbody! Cover, TWO! Metalik kicks Murphy’s legs but Murphy shoves Metalik. Metalik springboards for the back elbow! He CHOPS Murphy then whips, but Murphy reverses. Metalik walks the ropes, and springboards for the missile dropkick! Cover, TWO!

Metalik keeps his cool, and starts up another “Lucha! Lucha!” He lifts Murphy in a fireman’s carry, but Murphy slips out. Murphy fires off his strike fest, but misses the knee to get a SUPERKICK! Metalik gets another fireman’s carry but Murphy slips out and shoves Metalik to the ropes, KNEE TRIGGER! Murphy runs, but into a fireman’s carry, Metalik Driver!! TWO!! Metalik almost had the Cruiserweight Champion, but Murphy’s tougher than that. Metalik drags Murphy to a drop zone, then climbs up top. Murphy revives and rolls out to the apron. Murphy goes for Metalik but Metalik shoves him down. Metalik goes after Murphy but Murphy drop toeholds him into the desk! Murphy then back suplexes Metalik right on the apron! Murphy puts Metalik in and climbs up top, for a flying meteora! Cover, TWO! Metalik shows he’s tough, too, and Murphy can’t believe it.

Both men slowly stir with the 10 count. Fans rally up as Murphy stands first. Murphy drags Metalik up but Metalik inside cradles! TWO and Metalik boots Murphy down! Metalik climbs but Murphy tucks him in, only for Metalik to pop out and mule kick Murphy away! Metalik finishes climbing, and moonsaults, onto boots! Murphy deadlifts to a sit-out bomb! TWO!? Metalik lives and Murphy is furious. But fans love this and bring back the “Lucha! Lucha!” Metalik gets to the ropes but Murphy grits his teeth. Murphy drags Metalik up and around, for the point blank knee trigger! Then, pumphandle to victory roll!? TWO! Metalik springboards, but into Murphy’s Law! Cover, Murphy wins!

Winner: Buddy Murphy, by pinfall

The Cruiserweight Champion finally finishes it off and moves on to his title defense this Sunday! If the King of the Ropes put up such a great fight, how much more will the Age of Alexander do? And what shape will Alexander be after his match later tonight?

 

Akira Tozawa & THE Brian Kendrick meet with Drake Maverick.

The Stamina Monster helps The Man with a Plan with his collar as the GM walks in. Maverick approves their match with Drew Gulak & Jack Gallagher, under Street Fight rules. How ironic, really. How? Well, their Street Fight match against each other. And now they’re working together in a Street Fight tag match. Yes, true. Kendrick admits he’s changed since then. When he returned to the WWE, he manipulated and cheated because he was desperate. Kendrick was doing whatever he had to in order to keep his dream, and Tozawa was one of the main targets. So Kendrick should thank Gallager & Gulak for beating that out of him. What Kendrick needs to do now is lift this Division up. Kendrick’s a changed man.

Tozawa agrees and supports Kendrick. But the problem now is that Kendrick still looks the same. Tozawa has an idea. Well, okay… What kind of makeover will Tozawa give Kendrick? And Tozawa thanks Maverick for his time, but reminds Maverick he lost those Raw Tag Team Championships. “So, you’re FIRED!” Tozawa can’t fire people, he’s not the GM or anything. But can he and Kendrick fire up and melt the cruel winter?

 

Drew Gulak & Jack Gallagher respond.

“A Street Fight is the perfect place to end the career of THE Brian Kendrick.” And what Kendrick needs to understand that the beating they gave him wasn’t to humiliate but to redeem Kendrick. Kendrick was fired once, twice, so maybe this isn’t for him. Gallagher & Gulak didn’t go far enough, because if they had, the team of Tozawa & Kendrick wouldn’t have existed. And that’s why a Street Fight Tag is perfect: they can go as far as they want, and anything is legal. So when they face off for the final time, you WILL tap out. Who will survive this gritty grudge match?

 

Backstage interview with Ariya Daivari.

The Persian Lion has beaten down local competitors two weeks in a row, what is the reason behind that? Wrestling used to be simple: find two of the toughest men, put them in a ring, and let them battle it out until only one was left standing. It was never meant to be flashy or pretty. “What’s happened to this business?” All anyone seems to care about is dressing up like their favorite superheroes or retweeting compliments. Daivari was out with an injured neck, and he watched 205 Live have a lot of flash, but no fight.

Hideo Itami walks over, and says he was watching last week. “Good job.” The two shake hands, and there seems to be mutual respect for their mean streaks. Daivari says Itami is one of the last true men in the Cruiserweight Division, and the only one worthy of respect. Will Daivari and Itami bring 205 Live back to a rougher and more “respectful” time of wrestling?

 

Cedric Alexander VS Tony Nese!

The Soul of 205 Live wants to rebuild his legacy starting with TLC, but the Premier Athlete says he’s not worthy. The Juggernaut already goes in tired but victorious, will Alexander be able to do the same?

The bell rings and Nese flexes on Alexander. Alexander ignores it as he circles with Nese. Fans rally up as the two tie up. Alexander pushes Nese back to a corner but backs off at 4. Alexander flexes back and circles with him again. Vegas is on Alexander’s side and that annoys Nese. Nese and Alexander tie up and Nese gets a waistlock. Alexander tries to break out but Nese rolls him. Nese flexes again but Alexander shrugs it off. Alexander and Nese tie up again and Alexander gets the wristlock. Nese pulls hair and gets the reversal. Alexander rolls and handsprings to reverse back then get a takedown. Nese shoves Alexander back and gets his own takedown, but Alexander pushes him away. Alexander rolls, handsprings and headscissors but Nese handsprings through!

Alexander runs into Nese’s back elbow, but Alexander gets under Nese’s moonsault! Nese goes Matrix to dodge Alexander, but Alexander hits the dropkick! Fans fire up as Alexander covers, TWO! Alexander checks his teeth while catching his breath before going back to Nese. He bumps Nese off buckles and then CHOPS. Alexander CHOPS again, then follows Nese to ropes. Nese mule kicks and then goes to backslide, but Alexander hooks ropes to stay grounded. Alexander reels Nese in to toss him out! Fans fire up as Alexander builds speed, but Nese slides in! Alexander barely grabs the rope in time to stop himself, and he manages to shoulder Nese back. Nese rolls as Alexander springboards to SHORYUKEN! Cover, TWO!

Nese keeps on Alexander with stomps, then he flexes again. Fans boo as Nese clubs Alexander. Alexander chops back, but Nese kciks him to a corner. Nese whips corner to corner hard, then covers, TWO! Nese keeps his cool as fans duel. Alexander chops back again, then boots from a corner. Alexander runs into a throat chop! Nese runs and hotshots Alexander down! Then triangle jump moonsault! Cover, TWO! Nese argues the count but the ref says it was two. Nese stomps away on Alexander then brings him up for a scoop slam. Cover, TWO! Nese sits Alexander up for the body scissor squeeze. Fans rally while Alexander endures. Nese grabs for an arm but Alexander resists, so Nese clubs him. Nese gets the arm and CHOPS Alexander. Alexander punches back and breaks free!

Alexander throws more hands, then runs, but into a big clothesline! Cover, TWO! Alexander survives and Nese is surprised, but Nese keeps his cool. Nese wraps on a chinlock and drives a knee into Alexander’s back. Fans rally and Alexander feeds off the energy. Alexander gets up but Nese throws him to the apron. Alexander boots Nese back, then springboards. He fakes out the uppercut to step-springboard for a complete shot! Nese gets to a corner and fans rally up. Alexander takes off the elbow pads and rallies on Nese. He gives Nese an uppercut now, but msises in the corner. Nese runs into the dropkick and hits buckles. Alexander goes to the apron to kick Nese back in! Nese staggers, Alexander springboards, flying lariat hits! Cover, TWO! Nese is dazed but he survives.

Alexander fires up with the fans as he stalks Nese. He brings Nese up but Nese mule kicks and knee lifts. Nese roundhouses but misses the sweep to get a buzzsaw! Cover, TWO! Alexander grows frustrated and gets a wild look in his eyes. Alexander goes back to Nese and brings him up. Nese clutches ropes and Alexander has no choice but to let go. Alexander walks into a gutbuster! Cover, TWO! Nese keeps on Alexander with a shove and a back elbow. Then Nese runs for big forearms! Cover, TWO!! Alexander barely gets out and Nese grows frustrated. Nese drags Alexander up, saying “I’m better than you!” He slaps Alexander as he repeats that, but Alexander slaps back!

Alexander blocks the kick to give an elbow, then runs to handspring. Nese catches the Neuralizer into a Samoan Drop! But Nese can’t cover, he’s too exhausted. Nese forces himself to stand and bring Alexander up. He whips but Alexander reverses. Nese grabs ropes then dumps Alexander out. Nese runs to FLY! Direct hit folds Alexander up! The referee checks on both men, but they’re both okay to continue. Nese drags Alexander up and in, then goes to a corner. Nese climbs up, leaps, but his 450 flops! Alexander goes to cradle but Nese blocks it, TWO!! Michinoku Driver outta nowhere! TWO!! Alexander can’t believe Nese survives, but fans are fired up!

Vegas cheers Alexander on as he stalks Nese. Alexander brings Nese up but Nese sprawls to block. Nese elbows Alexander but walks into a roundhouse. Alexander lifts but Nese slips out to a cover, TWO! Neuralizer! Then Lumbar Check!! Cover, Alexander wins!!

Winner: Cedric Alexander, by pinfall

The Premier Athlete pushed Alexander to his limits but it wasn’t enough, the challenger keeps pace with the champion. Speaking of, Buddy Murphy returns to stare Alexander down. Alexander dares Murphy to bring the fight, there’s nothing but “space and opportunity” between them! Murphy takes a look at his belt, and puts it down so he can rush the ring! Murphy gets in but Alexander gets him down! The champion and challenger brawl on the mat, but then Murphy bails out. Alexander doesn’t let him go as he FLIES out! Fans fire up as Alexander gets back in the ring. Alexander dares Murphy to keep the fight going, but Murphy reconsiders. The Soul of 205 Live is fired up, but will he be able to reclaim his throne? Or will he be stopped by the unstoppable?

 


 

My Thoughts:

A great go-home for 205 Live that also feeds a bit into next week’s episode. I do like the full circle Kendrick is going through having another Street Fight based match for a blow-off. I just hope Tozawa’s new wardrobe ideas don’t make Kendrick reconsider the partnership. We still need more teams for the potential Cruiserweight Tag Team Division. And in which case, Daivari’s promo about joining forces with Itami started to sound more like a reason he’d join up with Gulak & Gallagher. But I suppose more than one Heel team can have the motivation of wanting a more brutal and less flashy style of wrestling to prevail. But where Gulak & Gallagher love ground game and grapples, Itami & Daivari can be about strikes and drivers. A match between those four might be pretty good, too.

The two matches we got tonight were the only matches we needed. It’s a shame Noam Dar didn’t get to go against Buddy Murphy, but Murphy VS Metalik was still an incredible opener. The styles went well together, and Metalik still looks really strong in losing. Alexander VS Nese was incredible again, even after the many other times we’ve seen it. I was curious as to why it wasn’t Alexander VS Ali, but not only would it be too soon, we know now Ali VS Bryan was in the works. I was surprised Murphy agreed to brawl against Alexander for even that little bit. As the Heel, he should’ve just stayed back rather than fight to retreat. It still got the fans fired up, but maybe this is so Alexander can stand tall and give the math to Murphy.

My Score: 8.8/10

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Mitchell’s WWE NXT Results & Report! (12/12/18)

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Ricochet puts up his NXT North American Championship on the line, but against who? Plus, EC3 wants payback on Bobby Fish for that vicious chair attack!

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • EC3 VS Bobby Fish w/ The Undisputed Era; EC3 wins.
  • Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch VS The Mighty; Lorcan & Burch win.
  • NXT Women’s Championship #1 Contender Fatal 4 Way Qualifier: Mia Yim VS Reina Gonzalez; Yim wins and joins the NXT Women’s Championship #1 Contender Fatal 4 Way.
  • NXT North American Championship: Ricochet VS ???; Ricochet wins and retains the NXT North American Championship.

PLAY BY PLAY

EC3 VS Bobby Fish w/ The Undisputed Era!

The Top One Percent looks to keep it 100 as he goes for payback against the Infamous One for what he did weeks before TakeOver: WarGames II. But Fish has his friends by his side as always, will EC3 be able to win with Kyle O’Reilly, Roderick Strong and Adam Cole lurking?

Adam Cole says the holidays have come early because now Fish gets to humiliate the “Top One Percent of Morons”. EC3 was dumb enough to think he’d elevate his career to new heights. But with the help of a chair, Fish showed EC3 that NXT is their world! The Undisputed Era is the center of the NXT Universe, and everything revolves around her. This has been a career year and is just the beginning of an entire decade! And in 2019, the four of them will be “draped in gold”. That’s not a threat, “that is Undisputed.” But EC3 makes his entrance and we begin this grudge match!

Fish and EC3 are ready to go with the bell. Fish moves around but EC3 corners him, so Fish bails out. The Undisputed Era cheer Fish’s mind games on, and so do some fans. Fish returns but wants EC3 to stay back. EC3 doesn’t and he hip tosses Fish in! Fish scrambles to a corner and EC3 fires off hands and stomps! EC3 whips corner to corner but Fish ducks down to go after the leg. EC3 powers Fish off and hits a BIG powerbomb! Fish staggers about and EC3 clotheslines him right out! EC3 goes out with him, but gets back in the ring, all fired up! Fish is reeling and the Era coach him up, but EC3 comes out. EC3 fetches Fish into the ring and puts on a half nelson. Fish gets up but EC3 makes it a nerve hold to keep him down.

Fish gets up and powers EC3 to a corner, but EC3 turns it around. EC3 CHOPS Fish, and again! Then he biels Fish across the way. Roddy and Kyle distract, and Fish chop blocks the bad leg! Fish rains down rights but EC3 pushes him off. Fish stomps EC3, then kicks him. The Era is rabid as Fish throws hands and puts EC3 in a corner. Fish throws body shots and forearms, then kicks away at the back leg. Dragon screw throws EC3 for a loop! Fish grabs the bad leg and pulls on it, standing on the other leg to keep him down. Fans rally and EC3 pushes Fish off! EC3 runs in but misses, and then turns around into an exploder! Cover, TWO! Fish is furious, but he goes back for more.

Fish brings EC3 up but it’s EC3 who hits the suplex! EC3 grits his teeth as he gets up, and he counter punches Fish. He fires off lefts and rights then whips, but Fish snaps against the ropes awkwardly. EC3 takes advantage with a scoop slam, then wants Fish to “Say My Name!” Name Drop elbow hits! Roddy and Kyle distract again but EC3 hits them for it. But Fish still gets the chop block! Fish goes for a leg but EC3 cradles! EC3 WINS!

Winners: EC3, by pinfall

But The Era attack! All four of them stomp away like rabid dogs, but here come Heavy Machinery! Tucker Knight & Otis Dozovic use size to even up the numbers! Dozer clobbers Cole and Strong while Tucky gets rid of reDRagon! Kyle tries to escape but Heavy Machinery drag him back in. EC3 gets Kyle up for the One Percenter! Fans are thunderous for this trio as EC3 gets Dozer pumping up. Dozer gets going with the Caterpillar elbow! Will Heavy Machinery help the Top One Percent end this Undisputed Era once and for all?

 

NXT Media catches up to Dakota Kai and Io Shirai.

They fought together to stop The Horsewomen from ganging up on Captain Kick. Jessamyn Duke & Marina Shafir keep sticking their noses in Shayna Baszler’s matches, so these two are going to stop that personally. The Genius of the Sky don’t want her friends getting bullied, so all that’s left is a match. That’ll happen next week, who takes a victory in this Women’s Division war?

 

Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch VS The Mighty!

The One Two Combination defeated Shane Thorne & Nick Miller already, but this is about the sore loser sneak attack after the match! Will Thorne & Miller regret punking out this pair of pugilists? Or will Lorcan & Burch finally make The Mighty kneel?

Lorcan & Burch are raring to go but they still wait for the bell. Thorne starts with Lorcan and Lorcan fires off! Then Miller and Burch get in and it’s a pair of brawls! Burch throws Miller out then Lorcan throws Thorne out. Burch goes out and Miller shoves him into the apron, but Lorcan FLIES! Lorcan wipes The Mighty out and fans fire up! Lorcan puts Thorne in and then runs into the corner for a big elbow. He gets moving but Thorne follows with a European Uppercut! Thorne runs but Lorcan follows to rock him back! Lorcan suckers Thorne into an elbow and a powerbomb! Then the Half Crab! Miller comes in but gets CHOPS! Thorne gets Lorcan with the saido suplex! Tag to Miller and he whips Lorcan. Miller hits a big corner clothesline, then whips into a SPINEBUSTER! Cover, TWO! Lorcan lives but Miller keeps on him.

Tag to Thorne, and Miller whips Thorne at Burch. Miller then whips Thorne back but Lorcan dodgse to tag Burch! The Governor rallies on The Mighty, and tackles Thorne with a Thesz Press! Burch rocks Miller with a right, then goes right at Thorne with a clothesline and kick. Miller runs but is sent into Thorne, and then Burch deals out more kicks! Burch hops up and leaps for a missile dropkick! And he kips up! Tag to Lorcan, and the One Two coordinate at a corner. Burch lifts Thorne but Thorne fights out. Thorne dodges Burch to SHORYUKEN Lorcan. Then he clobbers Burch. Miller returns and helps Thorne get up top quick. SUPERPLEX BOMB! Miller puts Thorne on top to cover, but Burch barrels through Miller to break it! Burch gets thrown out, and Thorne tags Miller in.

The Mighty go after Lorcan but Burch saves him from Thunder Valley. Miller tackles them both, and then scoops Lorcan. Powerslam, to Poetry in Motion cannonball! Cover on Lorcan, TWO!? The Mighty are shocked by this double toughness! Miller tags Thorne, and they again go after Lorcan. They lift Lorcan up, but get double DDT’s! Lorcan has a wild look in his eye and fans rally behind it. Lorcan takes Miller’s face and SLAPS away! Then he SLAPS away on Thorne! they BOTH slap Lorcan, but then he ducks and they slap each other!! Lorcan sends Miller into a post, then tags in Burch. Burch headbutts Thorne, and with Lorcan’s help, London Tower! Cover, Lorcan & Burch win!

Winners: Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch, Burch pinning

They did it again! The Mighty fell to the One Two Combination, who continue their hot streak since returning to action. While the Undisputed Era has Heavy Machinery to worry about, will Lorcan & Burch move up the ranks towards those NXT Tag Team Championships?

 

NXT Media has another video from Johnny Gargano.

“Aleister, you thought our story ended in Los Angeles when you ‘absolved’ me of my sins.” But Gargano never said he did nothing wrong. This is about the greater good. The ends justify the means. The end: becoming NXT Champion, and the world celebrating! So if the means meant beating someone up, Aleister was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. That’s why their story continues. Gargano says Aleister can put Gargano in a cage with the devil himself, and he’ll do whatever he has to to make sure the story ends the right way. Gargano won’t just turn the page, he closes the book on Aleister Black. Will Gargano keep his word to end the Embodiment of the End? Or will his happy ending simply #FadeToBlack?

 

Dominic Dijakovic speaks.

“The bond of blood is sacred. The roots of our tree are unbreakable. They keep us grounded.” He will fight for them, and die for them. This is “our vision”, and you will #FeastYourEyes on his debut, next week.

 

Backstage interview with Shayna Baszler and the Horsewomen.

She, Jessamyn and Marina have heard about the Fatal 4 Way #1 Contenders match. But Shayna doesn’t care, because it will always end the same way: she goes home with the title, her opponent goes home with nothing. As for the challenge issued by Dakota & Shirai, Marina & Jessamyn laugh it off. They’re ready for the “challenge”. The Horsewomen roll out, but who will have the last laugh when it’s all said and done?

 

NXT Women’s Championship #1 Contender Fatal 4 Way Qualifier: Mia Yim VS Reina Gonzalez!

The Queen of Spades awaits a challenger at TakeOver: Phoenix now that she’s moved the Pirate Princess out of the way. The Un-De-Fea-Ted Bianca Belair is already one participant, and William Regal announces via Twitter that Lacey Evans will be the other. Both women have put together impressive wins, so it’s up to the Blasian Baddie and the Daughter of the Desperado to impress the GM this week. Who joins the EST and the Lady of NXT in a fight for the right to challenge #ShaynaTwoTime and her reign of terror?

The bell rings and Mia ties up with Reina. Reina powers Mia to a corner, but Mia dodges the swing to jump on for a guillotine! Reina powers out but Mia slips away. Mia leaps back on for the guillotine! Reina powers out but Mia dropkicks her back. Mia goes for Sole Food but Reina pushes her away. Reina swings but Mia dodges, and puts the guillotine back on! Reina powers out again, but to a suplex! And she hangs Mia out to dry on the rope, before throwing her down! Reina stomps a mudhole into Mia, but backs off at 4. She drags Mia out to a cover, TWO! Reina grows frustrated but fans rally up for Mia. Mia hits back, but gets clobbered! Reina runs, and boots Mia right down! Cover, ONE! Reina tries again, TWO!

Reina grows frustrated but she talks trash in Spanish. She dares the Baddie to get up, then pulls her into a Canadian torture rack! Mia endures the stretch and Reina even fish hooks. Reina jumps around to add torque, but Mia fights out. Mia arm-drags Reina into ropes, then gets space. Reina staggers over but into CHOPS! Mia throws body shots and even more chops! Mia throws palm strikes and kicks, then knees and a Pele! Reina staggers, time to Eat Da Feet! Cover, Mia wins!

Winner: Mia Yim, by pinfall

Reina eats Sole Food and Mia now sits at the winner’s table! Can the Baddie beat out the Model Soldier and EST? Who will join them as the fourth and final contender?

 

Aleister Black speaks.

“What I find interesting about the human race is that everything they do revolves around how they are feeling.” Everyone keeps asking, “What do you feel about your match with Johnny Gargano?” How does he feel about a Steel Cage Match with Gargano? He doesn’t feel anything. He just knows he has to win. “It’s come to my attention that you are far, far beyond absolution. You are far beyond redemption. And the only thing left is the total annihilation.” It will happen in that steel cage. There won’t be any running or hiding, there will simply be Gargano and his sins, and they will all #FadeToBlack! Will Aleister leave Gargano for dead inside the steel?

 

NXT North American Championship: Ricochet VS ???

The One and Only is eager to prove he’s a fighting champion and a worthy champion at that. He left it to NXT GM William Regal to choose his opponent, and Regal promised “something special” for this match. But who is it that answered this open contract challenge?

Ricochet makes his entrance and awaits his mystery challenger. The “something special” turns out to be… “Look everyone, it’s Tyler!” Prince Pretty returns to NXT in a major way! Tyler Breeze brings back the selfie cam titantron feed, and looks to revitalize himself with a new belt! Will Breeze shock everyone by becoming the third-ever North American Champion? Or will Ricochet add Breeze to the highlight reel?

The belt is raised and fans chant “Welcome Back!” for the NXT alumni. The bell rings and fans are already dueling. Tyler and Ricochet take a moment to enjoy it before circling. They tie up and go around, and Breeze arm-drags Ricochet. Breeze backs off to lounge on the top rope. Ricochet nods respect as Breeze comes back. They tie up again, and Ricochet gets around to a headlock. Breeze powers out but Ricochet rolls and speeds things up. Ricochet rolls off the back then ducks under to handspring and headscissor and dropkick! Breeze bails out to catch his breath, but Ricochet comes out. Breeze hurries back in, but Ricochet doesn’t give him time to rest. Ricochet and Breeze go around, Breeze goes for a Half Crab. Ricochet gets to ropes and pushes Breeze away. Breeze kicks Ricochet then runs, but into a somersault lariat!

Breeze bails out, but Ricochet fakes him out on the apron. Ricochet boots Breeze then leaps, into a dropkick! Both men are down, but fans are loving this! The fans still duel while Breeze checks his teeth. Breeze puts Ricochet into the ring, then into a corner. Breeze stomps a gorgeous mudhole into Ricochet, then shouts at the ref when he’s pulled away. Ricochet flounders but Breeze is on him with a scoop. Breeze puts Ricochet on the top rope and climbs up, but Ricochet fights him off. Breeze falls back and Ricochet is on him, but Breeze shoves. Ricochet comes back to knee Breeze back. Ricochet then somersaults from a corner to dropkick Breeze! Breeze crawls to a corner and Ricochet runs in, for a big back elbow to back hand.

Ricochet throws Breeze into buckles but misses the tiger feint kick. Breeze German Suplexes but Ricochet lands on his feet! Ricochet sends Breeze into buckles again and hits the tiger feint! Ricochet springboards for a flying uppercut! Standing shooting star! Cover, TWO! Breeze survives, showing his toughness. Fans rally up as Ricochet gets back up. Ricochet puts Breeze in a drop zone, then climbs up top. Ricochet leaps, but has to roll through the Phoenix Splash when Breeze moves. Breeze hits back with haymakers, but so does Ricochet. They brawl back and forth, and fans are divided.

They hit each other at the same time, and same goes for kicks. Ricochet turns around but both men clothesline. Breeze blocks Ricochet’s boot but Ricochet dodges Breeze’s Super Model Kick. Both men run, and collide with double crossbodies! Fans fire up for “NXT! NXT!” while both men are down. A 10 count begins and the fans rally up. Breeze and Ricochet sit up slowly, and brawl on their knees. Ricochet gives an uppercut, but Breeze clubs him on the back. They continue as they stand up and Ricochet fires off forearms. Ricochet suplexes but Breeze resists. Breeze suplexes but Ricochet resists. They repeat the cycle but Ricochet slips out. Ricochet back suplexes but Breeze slips out. Breeze waistlocks but Ricochet elbows out.

Ricochet runs, springboards, but misses, SUPER MODEL KICK! And Reverse-Rana! Cover, TWO!! Ricochet survives and Breeze is shocked. Fans declare “This is Gorgeous!” rather than awesome, but it’s still awesome, too! Ricochet and Breeze go to opposite corners, then approach. Ricochet says NXT is his now, but Breeze mule kicks. Breeze throws haymakers, then aims a kick, but Ricochet hits with a boot first! Ricochet walks over, into a jumping knee! And an enziguri! Breeze leaps but he’s caught, into the fireman’s carry, and Samoan Driver! Cover, Ricochet wins!

Winner: Ricochet, by pinfall; still NXT North American Champion

That wasn’t just special, that was spectacular! Prince Pretty gives the King of Flight a fight he wasn’t expecting, but Ricochet shows Breeze the respect he deserves, and the two handshake. Will Breeze stick around to give it another try? Will Ricochet’s reign extend to be one of the most impressive in NXT history?

 


 

My Thoughts:

An incredible episode right here! We waste very little time getting into action and I am really impressed that EC3 pulls off another surprise win on an Undisputed Era member. He and Fish had a great match, and I really liked that it was Heavy Machinery backing EC3 up in that brawl. I think it should be a Six Man of EC3 & Heavy Machinery VS Roderick Strong & reDRagon while Adam Cole likely distracts or interferes. And while his story with the North American Championship likely isn’t over, I don’t know if NXT would want to create a secondary WarGames scenario where now it’s just EC3 and Heavy Machinery standing in for Pete Dunne & War Raiders. Cole can hang about as the leader of Undisputed Era while waiting for title scenes to change.

I’m a touch disappointed we’re only getting 2v2 next week, but Dakota & Shirai VS Jessamyn & Marina should be a great match for the last two MMA Horsewomen to make an in-ring debut with. Now in real-time, we have learned Dakota Kai is injured, but that shouldn’t affect next week’s match. Sadly it’ll mean she won’t get to be part of TakeOver: Phoenix or anything else after that, and we wish her a speedy recovery. Meanwhile, Mia and Reina have a great match. Reina having a bull rope and cowbell makes me want a Women’s Bull Rope match for the hell of it. If Reina sticks around, she should be able to gain some ground once things clear up. As it stands, Mia looks like a front runner as the Face in that Fatal 4 Way. I wonder if they’ll use a battle royal to determine the fourth participant.

That tag team match of Lorcan-Burch VS The Mighty was incredible! NXT Tag Team wrestling is getting back up there and the scrappy One Two Combo is a large part of that. Get those two on SmackDown AND 205 Live, they’ll be great tag title contenders at least. Gargano and Aleister have great promos going towards their Steel Cage match, but I hope they use the cage in different ways of physicality than we usually see. Throwing the opponent into steel is one thing, but I think NXT can use these two for something really gritty.

For me, it’s a bit of a mixed bag on Tyler Breeze’s return. It’s a bit sad that he was sent back, but it was a great surprise and Full Sail got behind him. The bottom line is this is the wrestling quality main roster should’ve given Breeze, but Vince just insisted on overemphasizing gimmick and comedy. Granted, Breeze does great with comedy, but if the Fashion Police were doing matches on this level, they’d be champions. Breeze gave Ricochet a hell of a match, and it really elevates Ricochet in winning. It’ll really take something insane to dethrone Ricochet, if Breeze got to be this strong. As for Breeze, I’m not sure what he’ll do now that he’s back. I was hoping he’d go to 205 Live, but I know HHH will treat Breeze right either way.

My Score: 8.8/10

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