AXS TV speeds up their NJPW coverage by giving us two hours of Dominion! In Part 1, it will be both the NEVER Openweight and IWGP Jr. Heavyweight titles on the line! Then in Part 2, it’ll be the IWGP Tag Team and Intercontinental Championships. Will Los Ingobernables de Japon win or lose those precious titles?
This review of Dominion 2018 will be as broadcast by AXS TV.
Therefore, all images are courtesy of AXS TV.
Gifs courtesy of http://frentique.tumblr.com
- Part 1 – NEVER Openweight Championship Triple Threat: Hirooki Goto VS Michael Elgin VS Taichi w/ Miho Abe; Elgin wins and becomes the new NEVER Openweight Champion.
- Part 1 – IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship: Will Ospreay VS Hiromu Takahashi; Hiromu wins and becomes the new IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion.
- Part 2 – IWGP Tag Team Championships: EVIL & SANADA VS The Young Bucks; The Young Bucks win and become the new IWGP Tag Team Champions.
- Part 2 – IWGP Intercontinental Championship: Tetsuya Naito VS Chris Jericho; Jericho wins and becomes the new IWGP Intercontinental Champion.
PLAY BY PLAY
NJPW and AXS TV review what has led to Part 1!
The Best of the Super Juniors 25 had a 5.5 Star finale with The Ticking Time Bomb defeating the new Bone Soldier, Taiji Ishimori. Hiromu has faced Will Ospreay in the past, but the Aerial Assassin has had an amazing 2018 as he’s defeated Marty Scurll, Kushida and Hiromu both all at once and individually. They go one more time, will Ospreay retain? Or will Hiromu explode and shock the world?
Meanwhile, Chaos’ Fierce Warrior, Hirooki Goto, has retained his NEVER Openweight title time and time again, but in 1v1 matches. Now he has two challengers in the Unbreakable Mike Elgin then the Sliest Wrestler in the World, Taichi. A rare triple threat for the title, will Goto overcome this new challenge? Or will he be dethroned to crown a new NEVER king?
NEVER Openweight Championship Triple Threat: Hirooki Goto VS Michael Elgin VS Taichi w/ Miho Abe!
The ego of Taichi sparked the anger of the Fierce Warrior, and so without hesitation, Goto decided he would face both men to prove his dominance. Has Goto gotten himself over his head? Or will he rise to the challenge he put on himself?
Taichi, ever the dramatic one, waits to take his cape and mask off until the other two men already removed their extra gear. The bell rings and we begin. Fans are already loud for the champion as he approaches his challengers. But then Goto and Elgin realize Taichi is the real problem maker here, so they go after him. Taichi gets to ropes for safety, so they back off. Elgin and Goto both dare Taichi to come back. Taichi does, and the three circle. But again, Taichi finds himself against them both so he leaves the ring. There are no count outs so he doesn’t have to worry about losing this way. Goto and Elgin tie up, and that’s when Taichi rushes back in! He rolls Goto, but Elgin breaks that cover.
Elgin whips Taichi, but Taichi slides out. Taichi relaxes while Goto and Elgin brawl with big forearms and elbows. Elgin and Goto go back and forth while Taichi paces about. Goto gets a headlock but Elgin powers out. They collide with shoulders, and neither man backs down. Elgin shouts for Goto to bring it, so Goto runs. They collide again with no change, so Taichi rushes in again. But he runs into kicks from both men, and then a double whip. He holds ropes to bail out again, having a laugh at the other two. Taichi brings Miho Abe over, and she serves as a perky distraction for a moment. Elgin shakes it off to waistlock Goto, but Goto standing switches. He elbows out while the referee has Miho climb down. Elgin runs, but Goto follows, only for Elgin to enziguri! Fans applaud for that athleticism.
Elgin suplexes but Goto slips out to a waistlock. Elgin standing switches but Taichi returns. Taichi runs in but Goto evades so the boot goes into Elgin. Elgin goes out while Goto kicks Taichi. Goto runs but into Elgin’s shoulder. Elgin slingshots over but Taichi kicks him. Goto grabs Elgin, but Elgin boots Taichi away to then standing switch and shove Goto at Taichi. Goto collides with Taichi and Taichi staggers to ropes. Elgin lifts Goto but Goto fights out to standing switch and shoves Elgin at Taichi. Taichi kicks Elgin, then Goto clubs Elgin. Then they both roundhouse Elgin down! Taichi smirks, wanting to make this the partnership now. Goto says no with a slap, a kick, and a snap suplex onto Elgin! Then another snap suplex, and Goto goes back to Elgin.
Goto tries but can’t suplex Elgin up and over, but Elgin lifts and gordbusters Goto onto Taichi! But Goto makes that a cover, so Elgin has to break it up. Elgin drags Goto up while Taichi rolls away. Elgin chops Goto, then gives a big forearm. He whips Goto corner to corner, but misses his corner attack. Goto goes after Taichi but Taichi dodges to hit Elgin with a corner clothesline. Goto runs back in, Taichi dodges again, so Goto hits Elgin. Taichi runs into a kick, but reverses the whip. Elgin puts Goto on the apron, then side steps Taichi to send Taichi into Goto! Goto goes down, Elgin German Suplexes Taichi! Elgin holds on while fans applaud and Miho grows concerned.
Elgin brings Taichi up, but Taichi grabs ropes. But Elgin ignores the ropebreak to bring Taichi backward into a double chicken wing. Taichi resists and stomps Elgin’s foot, then ducks Elgin’s lariat. Taichi enziguris Elgin! Elgin is dazed and down to his knees. Taichi brings Elgin back up, but Elgin drops down to resist the lift. Goto returns and drags Taichi out of the ring. Taichi rakes the eyes, but he and Goto still brawl. Elgin sees his opening, and FLIES!
Big Mike bowls both Goto and Taichi over, but we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns as Elgin walks over to Taichi. Miho begs he not, but Elgin doesn’t care. He puts Taichi in the ring and the fans rally. Elgin aims at Taichi and runs in corner to corner for a big clothesline. He goes again, but runs into a boot. Goto returns and hits a saido suplex on Elgin. Goto runs but misses Taichi. Taichi kicks in return, then runs for a big lariat. Cover, TWO! Off comes the pants! Taichi aims at Goto, but Goto catches the kick into a fireman’s carry and Ushigoroshi! Cover, TWO! Fans rally and Goto keeps his focus. Goto drags Taichi up, and hoists him onto the top rope. Goto climbs up to join Taichi, but Elgin comes in and clubs Goto. Elgin yanks Goto down, then climbs up after Taichi. Goto clubs Elgin and SUPER back suplexes Elgin down!
Goto goes back to Taichi, clubs away then brings Taichi up. Taichi resists, but he rakes the face, too. Goto headbutts back, but Elgin returns! Elgin climbs up, sunset flips in, Tower of Doom!! Taichi hits with a lot of momentum off that superplex, and he writhes all the way to the opposite end. Elgin stands and fires up as he has his pick of the two. He goes for Taichi, brings him up, and throws him out of the ring. Elgin targets Goto, but Goto meets him for clotheslines. They collide but stay standing! They try again, but another solid collision. One more time, but Goto swats Elgin’s arm away. Goto runs, but Elgin swats his arm away. Elgin throws forearms from both sides, then spins, but Goto fireman’s carry.
Elgin dodges to try the full nelson, but Goto breaks free. In that case, Elgin shovels Goto onto his shoulders! Electric Chair with Bridge! TWO!! Elgin can’t believe it, but he won’t lose his focus. Elgin drags Goto back up, but Goto resists the driver or bomb Elgin wants. Goto back drops Elgin, then runs in at the corner. Goto blocks one boot but not the other. Elgin boots, then SUPERKICKS, then enziguri, but Goto ducks that one. Goto runs, but his clothesline only staggers Elgin. Elgin fires up but Goto headbutts him. Goto lifts Elgin, spin to another Ushigoroshi! He keeps going, GTR Forward! Cover, TWO!! Elgin survives, but Goto is not deterred.
Taichi’s back, and he’s back to using Miho as a tool. She’s in the ring, but the ref spots her. Goto grabs Elgin for the dragon sleeper, but Taichi has grabbed his mic stand! Taichi smashes Goto in the head, then Elgin! Miho exits and Taichi gets away with it. Taichi laughs at his own brilliance while fans rally for Goto and Elgin. Taichi fires up and aims at Goto. Goto staggers, into a SUPERKICK! Cover, TWO!! And Taichi is shocked! But he still grins as he targets Goto again. Goto sits up, for the buzzsaw! Then, the chicken wing cradle, but Elgin returns to deadlift Taichi up for a Buckle Bomb! Elgin keeps going on Taichi, and sees Goto in another corner. Elgin bombs Taichi onto Goto! Then gives Taichi a sit-out powerbomb!
Cover, Elgin WINS!!
Winner: Michael Elgin, by pinfall; NEW NEVER Openweight Champion
Big Mike gets a big win on two big names! Elgin becomes the 18th champion ever, and the titles first Canadian! And fittingly, Taichi is the one to lose, as he goaded both Goto and Elgin into this match. Elgin and Goto stand face to face, knowing this isn’t truly settled until they face 1v1. Where and when will these two get their desired showdown to prove who is truly worthy of that title?
IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship: Will Ospreay VS Hiromu Takahashi!
The Ticking Time Bomb won the 25th Best of the Super Juniors tournament to earn this newest chance at the Aerial Assassin’s title. But between the broken win on his trophy and his track record against the Aerial Assassin, does he have a chance at truly becoming the Best of the Junior Heavyweight Division? Or will Ospreay’s stellar roll through 2018 blow up in shocking fashion?
The belt is shown and the fans rally behind Hiromu. The bell rings and we begin. Ospreay runs and boots Hiromu, and they ignite into a forearm brawl back and forth! Ospreay backs Hiromu down, sweeps the legs, but runs into an overhead throw! He hits the buckle hard, then goes to the apron. Hiromu runs, but Ospreay holds on against the flying sunset powerbomb. Ospreay hops down to bring Hiromu over to the ramp. He suplexes, but Hiromu slips out to a waistlock. Hiromu tries to German Suplex Ospreay off, but Ospreay slips down and out. Ospreay trips Hiromu and Hiromu hits the ramp. Ospreay then gets up, gets a running start, and FLIES!!
The Aerial Assassin was like a missile as he hits Hiromu down! Hiromu is lucky it was just a graze or that could’ve been even worse. The referee checks on both men, but both men are okay to continue. Ospreay takes some time to pull up the floor mats! The 20 count reaches 10 as Ospreay brings Hiromu over for double underhooks. Hiromu resists, and Ospreay realizes the count is climbing, so he ditches this dangerous idea to put Hiromu back in the ring. Ospreay brings Hiromu up but Hiromu chops away. Ospreay kicks back then puts Hiromu in a corner for a running European Uppercut. He sweeps the legs again, and this time hits his corner to corner dropkick! Cover, TWO, but Ospreay keeps his cool.
Fans still chant for Hiromu but Ospreay points out he’s the champion here. Ospreay brings Hiromu up for a EuroUpper, then another. Hiromu falls, but Ospreay wraps his arm in a hammerlock while going for the other arm. Hiromu endures being bent back into the armlock recliner! It’s a cover, ONE, but Ospreay is still confidently calm. Hiromu gets out of the ring, clutching his shoulder now. The 20 count returns, but Ospreay pursues. Ospreay clubs the bad shoulder, then whips Hiromu into railing. Ospreay stalks Hiromu, and drags him back up. He pulls Hiromu into a post!
Ospreay puts Hiromu into the ring, then drags him back up. Ospreay goes after the arm with the shoulder breaker. Hiromu rests against ropes but Ospreay is on him again. Ospreay pulls the arm through the ropes to wrench it, then kicks Hiromu in the back. The champion is in control while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns, and Ospreay brings Hiromu back up for a snapmare. Ospreay puts Hiromu in a seated abdominal stretch and also pulls back on the arm. Fans rally for Hiromu, and Hiromu stands up to fight back. Ospreay gives Hiromu a forearm, then whips, but Hiromu dodges to headscissor Ospreay! Hiromu stands while Ospreay goes to a corner. Hiromu runs in, clothesline and roll to the basement dropkick. Ospreay rolls out, but Hiromu is on the apron for the flying John Woo dropkick! Hiromu hits Ospreay down, and Ospreay’s shoulder tape has come completely off. They go back into the ring, and Hiromu climbs up top. Hiromu hits the flying senton! Cover, TWO!
Fans still rally for Hiromu, and he looms over Ospreay. Hiromu brings Ospreay up for a fireman’s carry, but Ospreay slips out. Ospreay waistlocks but Hiromu hits back with back elbows. Hiromu whips but Ospreay reverses. They both run, but Ospreay runs into a pop-up sit-out powerbomb! High stack cover, TWO! Hiromu was so close, but he won’t lose focus yet. Hiromu stands and stalks Ospreay to a corner. He chops Ospreay, then chops again, but Ospreay fires up. Hiromu digs his fingers into Ospreay’s face! He breaks up at 4, then whips Ospreay corner to corner. Ospreay enziguris back, then hits with an elevated 619! Ospreay goes to a corner and springboards in for a flying clothesline!
Direct hit, but Ospreay doesn’t cover yet. He stands up, making sure his neck and shoulders are good. He aims at Hiromu, but Hiromu avoids the spin kick. Hiromu runs at Ospreay, but Ospreay catches him into a dragon sleeper! Ospreay lifts Hiromu but Hiromu slips out. Hiromu shoves Ospreay but Ospreay stops himself, only to run into a boot. Hiromu grabs Ospreay in the hanging triangle! The referee counts but Ospreay breaks out to kick Hiromu down. Ospreay runs, and FLIES with the Sasuke Special! Direct hit! Ospreay stands up and brings Hiromu over. They go back into the ring, and Ospreay brings Hiromu up. Dragon sleeper, inverted suplex to side slam! Cover, TWO!
Fans rally for Hiromu but Ospreay vows to finish this. Ospreay runs, springboards, but into a German Suplex! Fans rally for Hiromu again while both men are down. Ospreay sits up first, but Hiromu rolls towards ropes. Hiromu and Ospreay sit up on their knees, and Hiromu gives a forearm first. Ospreay hits back, but so does Hiromu. They glare at each other as they hit again and again. They stand up as they fight, but start to stagger. Hiromu shouts for Ospreay to get up, so Ospreay hits back. The forearm brawl continues, and Hiromu gives shots from both sides. Ospreay gives one big shot and Hiromu is rocked. But Hiromu SUPERKICKS, then runs, only for Ospreay to hit his flip kick.
Ospreay enziguris but Hiromu ducks under to then waistlock. Ospreay standing but Hiromu breaks free, then Hiromu ducks the hook kick to get the German Suplex! But Ospreay stands to flip kick again, and hit that enziguri, to Reverse-Rana! But then Hiromu stands and wants his own, only for Ospreay to slip out and give Hiromu another Reverse-Rana! Ospreay keeps going, bringing Hiromu up in the double underhook. He lifts, but Hiromu sunset flip powerbombs first!
The fans are all fired up, even though neither man stands. Both men stir, and Ospreay gets to ropes. Hiromu follows and joins him on the apron. They both stand up, and Hiromu grins as he gives Ospreay a forearm. Ospreay hits back, but so does Hiromu. Ospreay gives another shot, but Hiromu gives many more in return. Hiromu lifts Ospreay but Osprey slips back into the ring to hook kick Hiromu! Ospreay climbs up and brings Hiromu over, to deadlift SUPERPLEX! But he rolls through, to hang Hiromu up on the top rope. Ospreay climbs again, and aims at Hiromu, for a Burning Star Press! But he isn’t done there, he goes back up again. Ospreay aims, Red Arrow! Cover, TWO!! Ospreay is shocked he hasn’t won while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns as Ospreay stands back up. Ospreay brings Hiromu up, double underhooks, but Hiromu fights out. Hiromu ends up on the top rope and kicks Ospreay away. Hiromu then turns and leaps for a Destroyer piledriver! Ospreay stands up but is out on his feet, so Hiromu drags Ospreay down into the triangle hold! Hiromu pulls on Ospreay, squeezes Ospreay, but Ospreay fights up and deadlifts Hiromu into a bomb! But Hiromu holds on! Fans are thunderous as the two fight, Hiromu squeezing and Ospreay fading. Ospreay gets another lift, and makes it a package driver!
Hiromu only sits up from being out cold. Ospreay sits up while the referee checks on Hiromu. The fans are thunderous, but the Robinson Special hits! Ospreay wants it, so he runs and springboards, but Hiromu shoves him to the apron. HIromu runs, and leaps over to sunset powerbomb Ospreay near the open patch of ground! Ospreay surely regrets moving some of those aside. Hiromu puts him in the ring, then brings him up, fireman’s carry to Time Bomb! Cover, TWO!? Ospreay survives?! Hiromu can’t believe it, but fans are still thunderous for him.
Hiromu stands and has Ospreay up again, but Ospreay pops out of the swing to roundhouse Hiromu! Then, hook kick! Hiromu fires up and swings, but Ospreay deflects and counters with a heel kick! Hiromu is out again, but Ospreay won’t leave it at this. Ospreay drags Hiromu up, double underhooks, but Hiromu arm-drags into a triangle! Ospreay endures as Hiromu squeezes. Another deadlift, but Hiromu reverses into the D Driver!!
Hiromu crawls away, but he’s not done. Fireman’s carry, Death Valley into the corner! Fans are at a fever pitch as Hiromu brings Ospreay up, for another Ticking Time Bomb!!
Cover, Hiromu WINS!
Winner: Hiromu Takahashi, by pinfall; NEW IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion
He’s done it! Hiromu has prove himself THE Best of the Super Juniors by dethroning the Aerial Assassin! This is only his second reign with this title, but it means so much more to have won it after all the hard fought matches. Now he brings back both the BoSJ trophy and the Jr. Heavyweight Championship belt home to Los Ingobernables. How long will Hiromu be able to say he is the best of the best of the Jr. Heavyweight Division?
Will Ospreay pats himself on the back over putting up a good fight, but he isn’t done just yet. He’ll walk out with his head held high. Don’t count Ospreay out of NJPW just yet.
Hiromu Takahashi says it was a long battle, but he got the upper hand. He rests with his trophy and belt and says it’s no mistake. His is now the strongest Jr. heavyweight in the world. He’s the face of the division. No, of ALL of NJPW! Will Hiromu’s stock continue to rise? Or will Ospreay be back to blow him up in return?
NJPW and AXS TV review what has led to Part 2!
Los Ingobernables de Japon is under attack from all sides, and their championship belts are the primary targets. Chris Jericho made his return to NJPW in shockingly violent fashion when he suddenly attacked Tetsuya Naito from the crowd! Y2J would bash Naito open with the ring bell, and make the newly minted IWGP Intercontinental Champion bleed. Ever Tranquilo, Naito brushed it off and dared Jericho to face him in the ring for said title. Both men are charismatic but dangerous, who will come out the true alpha with a title in their hands?
Meanwhile, The Young Bucks have done all there is to do as a tag team, at least within the Junior Heavyweight Division. Motivated by their desire to match The Golden Lovers, Kota Ibushi & Kenny Omega, Matt & Nick Jackson put on weight to qualify as Heavyweights and now go for new gold! However, LIJ’s King of Darkness and Cold Skull have fought hard against bigger men and won. This is a first-time encounter for NJPW, will the Superkick Party add yet another set of tag titles to the collection? Or is the party over now that they’re in new waters?
IWGP Tag Team Championships: EVIL & SANADA VS The Young Bucks!
The long-standing staples of the Bullet Club have had tag titles from ROH, PWG and NJPW’s Junior Heavyweight Division at one time or another, and sometimes even all at the same time. They are even two-thirds of the current NEVER Openweight Six Man Tag Championship trio. But now they want to prove they can do it bigger and better than before! Will they check off the heavyweight tag titles for the first time? Or will LIJ’s menacing duo show the Matt & Nick what it truly means to be heavyweight wrestlers?
Tiger Hatori is the referee, and he raises the belts to signify this is officially for the titles. He checks each them, then has them go to their corners. Nick and Sanada start for their teams. Fans are behind Sanada as he circles with Nick, but there are plenty of fans chanting “The! Elite! The the Elite!” for the Bucks. Nick and Sanada tie up, and Sanada gets the headlock. Nick powers out but Sanada runs him over. Things speed up and Sanada jumps over and over Nick until Nick holds ropes to stop himself. Nick runs and throws Sanada with tilt-o-whirl headscissors! Sanada gets up but Nick chops him to then “lucha libre~” arm drag Sanada. Nick dropkicks Sanada, then fires up as Sanada backs off.
Tag to EVIL and Matt, but Nick stays in to drop toehold Evil for Matt’s slingshot leg drop. The Bucks see Sanada come in, and double hip toss him for double dropkicks. Fans applaud for the Bucks as Matt goes after Evil. Evil rakes Matt’s eyes, then coordinates with Sanada. They double suplex, but Nick saves his brother for them to double kick. Nick runs and Matt pops him up for the double missile dropkick. Both Sanada and Evil go down and out, but the Bucks take aim. Nick jumps up and FLIES onto them. Nick brings Evil back into the ring for Matt. Matt brings Evil up to whip, but Evil holds onto ropes. Matt tries again but Evil holds on so Matt clubs him. The whip goes through this time, but Evil holds the ropes on the other side.
Matt runs in, but into Evil’s boot. Evil runs out but misses, yet still gets Matt with the sidewalk slam! Nick runs in, but into a drop toehold. Sanada adds a baseball slide and sends Nick out. Sanada exits while Evil goes to Matt. He puts Matt on the outside, then whips Matt into the railings. Matt’s bad back is a target, and Evil keeps on it. Evil puts Matt back in the ring, stands on him for a cover, ONE. Tag to Sanada, and Sanada drags Matt up for a whip. Sanada runs Matt over with a back elbow, then standing moonsault. Cover, TWO. Tag to Evil, and Evil brings Matt back up for a neckbreaker. Cover, TWO, but Evil keeps on Matt with a chinlock while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns and Evil has Matt in that chinlock. Matt feeds off rallies from the fans and fights his way out. Matt runs but into double chops. Evil leaps for the back senton but Matt gets clear. Matt reaches for Nick but Sanada clobbers him down and throws him out first. Sanada slingshots but misses, and Matt hurries to his corner as fast as he can. Evil intercepts by taking Nick out, but then he runs into a hip toss from Matt. Matt wants to tag but there’s no one there. Nick slowly recovers while Evil runs in at Matt. Matt boots but Evil blocks, only for him to miss the spinning clothesline and get Nick’s kick! Fans rally and Matt crawls back towards his corner.
Hot tag to Nick, who rallies on LIJ with those swift kicks! Nick gives Sanada the shining wizard in the corner, then hits the bulldog-clothesline combo! Fans fire up again, and Nick sees Sanada on the apron. Nick runs to triangle jump dropkick Sanada down, then gets a running start. He aims at Evil, but Evil ducks the Penalty Kick to send that into the post! Evil sweeps the legs out and Nick hits apron before tumbling to the floor. Nick clutches his foot, but Evil is on him and that leg. Evil laces the leg in the railing to kick and jam it. Nick hobbles to the ring but Evil is on him. Evil grabs the leg but Nick shoves him away.
Nick gets up, brings Evil around and in comes Matt. Matt SUPERKICKS, but Evil dodges to send that into Nick! Sanada returns and throws Matt out again. Sanada & Evil target Nick but Nick fights back with forearm sand elbows. Nick runs but into a mule kick, front kick and Evil runs. Nick SUPERKICKS Evil, but it’s with the bad foot! And Evil comes back with a clothesline! Cover, TWO, but Evil calls to end this. Evil brings Nick up with Sanada, but Matt returns. Nick headscissors out of Magic Killer to throw Sanada, and Matt dropkicks Evil down. Matt goes after Sanada and hoists him onto the top rope. The Bucks regroup and climb up to join Sanada. Nick is sluggish with that bad foot, and now Evil returns! Evil makes it a Tower of Doom!
The Bucks are bombed while Sanada is superplexed! All four men are down from soreness and exhaustion, but Evil is first to rise. Evil goes after Nick, but Nick hits back with forearms. Evil kicks Nick, then fisherman, but Nick slips out to retaliate with a tornado roundhouse! Again, the bad leg slows Nick down, but fans rally up. Nick and Evil crawl, hot tags to Matt and Sanada. Sanada and Matt brawl back and forth, but Matt hits a spinning back kick. Matt whips Sanada to a corner but Sanada elbows out, to then quebrada. He wants the inverted DDT or even Skull End, but Matt reverses to Sliced Bread. Not for the impact, but for the Tombstone lift! Nick lines it up, but Evil yanks him down!
Sanada reverses, dragon sleeper! Matt snapmares out then trips Sanada, but Evil returns. Matt trips Evil, and goes for the Sharpshooter! The Cease is on, but Sanada says Desist with his Skull End! But Nick comes in with a flying stomp! Everyone separates, going to different corners. Fans rally up while Matt and Sanada stir. Sanada tags Evil, and Evil runs in at Matt. Matt boots but it’s blocked into the discus clothesline. Evil lifts Matt in a fireman’s carry, sit out Widowmaker! Cover, TWO!! Evil is shocked, but he keeps his focus. He slashes the throat and brings Matt up. Matt reverses the STO into a Tombstone position. Nick tries, but that bad ankle gives out! Evil turns the Tombstone position around, and Sanada flies in to copy the Meltzer Driver! Perhaps call it the Ingobernables Driver?
Cover, but Nick breaks it! Sanada tosses Nick out, and Evil says it’s time to finish it their way. He lifts Matt up and Sanada helps for the Magic Killer! Cover, but Nick returns to break the cover again! Sanada again throws Nick out, then slingshots over to plancha Nick down! Both men crash and burn, and Evil drags Matt up. Matt slips out of the STO to backslide, TWO! Even Evil thought that was three. Evil walks into a jawbreaker, but Sanada tags in. Sanada runs and gets the dragon sleeper! He wrenches Matt back, then feeds him to Evil’s mule kick. Sanada adds the knee lift, then Evil runs but into Matt’s clothesline!
Sanada dropkicks Matt down then dropkicks Nick off the apron. He goes back to Matt as fans fire up. Sanada puts on the dragon sleeper, but Matt flails and reaches, so Sanada swings Matt around and around! He puts Matt down, climbs up top, MOONSAULT! Sanada lands on his feet when Matt evades, Matt SPEARS Sanada! Evil clobbers Matt, then blocks the superkick. Evil smacks the bad ankle, then stalks Nick. Matt saves Nick from the STO, and they both SUPERKICK Evil!
Sanada runs in, dodges superkicks, tumbles to the outside and springboards! The Bucks SUPERKICK him out of the sky! But that’s not all, Matt and Nick coordinate. Matt brings Sanada up in fireman’s carry, Nick climbs up, rolling senton, 450 splash and moonsault, More Bang for Your Buck! Cover, The Young Bucks win!!
Winners: The Young Bucks, Matt Jackson pinning; NEW IWGP Tag Team Champions
Success! The greatest tag team in the world gets even greater with this victory! Even with Matt’s bad back and now Nick’s bad ankle, they found a way to win. With heart enough for any heavyweight, will the Young Bucks dominate just like they did in the Jr. Heavyweight Division?
IWGP Intercontinental Championship: Tetsuya Naito VS Chris Jericho!
After his defeat at the hands of Kenny Omega at Wrestle Kingdom 12, Chris Jericho vowed to never return to NJPW. However, he did not keep this vow, for at New Year’s Dash, he would ambush Tetsuya Naito! Naito didn’t understand why. In fact, Naito claimed to not know a thing about Jericho aside from being in an old Best of the Super Juniors tournament. Of course, Jericho didn’t win that tournament. That disrespectful ignorance is why Jericho is so angry with Naito, and Jericho claims to know how Naito truly feels behind that facade. It’s Tranquilo VS Crazy, what will win the day and the title?
But Jericho isn’t going to wait for the bell, circles around and attacks Naito from behind! Jericho drags Naito up and takes the cape off. They start brawling, but Jericho gets the edge as he backs Naito down into railings and even the crowd! The ring announcer warns fans to get back as Jericho attacks Naito with the railing itself! Jericho smacks Naito but Naito hits back. Jericho pulls Naito’s suit jacket over his head to then wail away with uppercuts, like a scrum on the ice in hockey. Then Jericho snap suplexes Naito to the bare concrete! Jericho even uses a camera tripod as a weapon.
Red Shoes reprimands Jericho, but Jericho just shoves him down! Jericho confiscates the timekeeper’s table and brings it over. He sets it up against railing, then goes back to Naito. They brawl more, but Jericho gets the edge, to then powerbomb Naito through the table!!
Fans are shocked at the brutality, but Jericho is far from done with Naito. He eggs Naito to get up out of that wreckage. Jericho even takes over a camera to get a good shot of Naito while he flips him off. He gives the camera back and kicks Naito amid the wreckage, even using the wreckage against Naito. Jericho doesn’t let up, but Naito doesn’t give up. They brawl a bit more, but Jericho gets the edge again. Jericho brings Naito around behind commentary and over to the other timekeeper’s table, to DDT him right down on the wood! The table doesn’t give, so that impact is solid. Red Shoes wants Jericho to stop, but Jericho makes sure he autographs the program notes before continuing.
Jericho drags Naito back up and back to ringside. This match is apparently starting now that Jericho puts Naito in the ring. Jericho shouts at Red Shoes to make it official, so Red Shoes has no choice but to signal for the bell. Fans rally for Naito as Jericho covers, ONE. Jericho rains right hands down on Naito, then taunts the fans and Naito. Jericho helps Naito finish undressing while also giving him more right hands. Fans rally for Naito, but Jericho just flips them all off. Jericho toys with Naito, slapping him around. Naito hits back with haymakers, but Jericho knees back, tigerbomb backbreaker! Then, LIONSAULT! Cover, TWO!
Jericho keeps his cool while fans rally for Naito. Jericho stands on Naito to grind his heel into the champion’s neck. Then Jericho chokes Naito against the ropes. Jericho stops at 4, but then grinds his boots into Naito more. He backs off at 4 to embrace the heat. Jericho drags Naito up, then chops him through the dress shirt and vest. He pushes Naito around, calling him a “piece of sh*t”. Naito hits back with haymakers, but Jericho rakes the eyes. Jericho whips Naito corner to corner hard, and Naito rolls with back pain. Jericho drags Naito up for another corner to corner whip and another hard impact. Naito writhes more while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns, and Jericho looms over Naito. He drags Naito up by his hair, but Naito hits back with haymakers and elbows. Jericho trips Naito and turns him over, for the Walls of Jericho! Naito gets the ropes, but Jericho holds on until 3. Jericho walks around while fans rally for Naito. He stomps and grinds his boot into Naito, but then tells Red Shoes to “shut your mouth” about the rules. Naito spits on Jericho! He’s defiant as ever, but that only angers Jericho more. Jericho runs but into Naito’s tackle and fists! Naito tackles Jericho again for even more fists. Naito runs in a third time but Jericho back drops him, only for that to turn into a neckbreaker across Naito’s knee. He keeps going and dropkicks Jericho in the back!
Naito takes off the vest and runs to boot Jericho in the corner, sweep the legs, and swing in for another dropkick. They both go to the apron now, for an apron neckbreaker! Jericho clutches his neck, but Naito keeps going with a draping neckbreaker to the floor! Naito, bloody in one eye, takes off the shirt and the pants, he’s finally ready for this match. He even uses the pants to choke Jericho! Jericho got away with a lot, so Naito sees it as fair play. Naito brings Jericho up and whips him into railing. Naito drags Jericho back up to ram him into railings again. As he backs off for space, Naito looks at the table wreckage from before. And he gets a wicked idea.
Naito brings the table piece over and SMACKS Jericho with it! That piece breaks even more, but Naito decides to use the bigger piece to SMACK Jericho again! Naito brings Jericho up and they fight behind commentary again. Naito brings Jericho back to that timekeeper’s table, for a piledriver!
That table stays solid again, so things are even between Naito and Jericho. Naito drags Jericho up and back to ringside. They go back in, and Naito climbs up. Naito aims, and jumps for a missile dropkick to Jericho’s back. Naito’s spirit is restored as he poses in the ring. The fans rally for Naito as he runs in, but Jericho boots him away. Jericho climbs up but Naito fires off haymaker after haymaker. Naito climbs up to throw more punches, then SUPER Steiner, but Jericho blocks! Jericho hops down, driving Naito’s head into the mat, then goes into Walls of Jericho! Naito endures as Jericho sits down and bends him back. Jericho shouts at Naito, but Naito doesn’t quit.
Fans rally again, and Naito powers up to reach for ropes. Jericho drags Naito away from ropes, Naito curls and fights back with right hands. Jericho slaps Naito out, then catapults Naito into a corner. But Naito uses that to climb up! Naito kicks Jericho away, then turns around for a flying huricanrana! Naito uses the ropes to help in a tornado DDT! Cover, TWO! Fans rally while Naito sits up. Naito staggers, that bleeding eye bothering him. He drags Jericho up, and hammerlocks one arm, but Jericho fights out with the other. Jericho swings but Naito waistlocks and lifts, only for Jericho to victory roll through it. Jericho goes from that to the legs, and he tries to turn Naito over for Walls! Naito ends up back in the signature Crab variation, but won’t give up.
Naito reaches, fades, but gets a second wind. Fans rally and Naito brings himself around. Naito slowly but surely gets closer to the ropes, and gets the ropebreak! Jericho insists Naito tapped out, but Red Shoes insists Naito didn’t. Jericho runs in but is flapjack’d for a hotshot. Naito then German Suplexes Jericho! No bridge, but Naito comes back in for the tilt-o-whirl. Jericho counters into a cover, TWO! Enziguri from Naito! Then Naito tries again, but has to club away to keep Jericho in place. Jericho chops, Naito SLAPS. Naito runs in, DESTINO! But Naito can’t make the cover, and Jericho crawls towards ropes. Cover, ROPEBREAK. Naito is too sore to be frustrated, he just sits up again.
Now Naito bleeds from the other cheek, but it’s nothing compared to what Jericho did to him. He and Jericho slap each other back and forth. Jericho hits Naito more, but Naito dares him to keep going. Jericho does, but then Naito just slaps him down. Naito chokes Jericho in the ropes, and spits on him again. He whips Jericho, but Jericho reverses. Naito leaps, but into a Code Breaker!
Jericho covers, TWO! Both men are so tired and sore already, but this match must continue. Fans rally up for Naito again, but it’s Jericho who sits up first. Jericho hits Naito, and Naito hits Jericho. They go back and forth with haymakers and forearms. They stand up but keep hitting. Naito hits three haymakers, then runs, but into a back elbow. Jericho runs, LIONSAULT, but onto knees! Enziguri, then hammerlock for GLORIA! But Naito’s not done there! He drags Jericho up, wrenches and tilt-o-whirls, but Jericho slips out of Destino, and in one swift motion he pushes Red Shoes and low blows Naito with a mule kick! Jericho gives another Code Breaker! Cover, Jericho WINS!!
Winner: Chris Jericho, by pinfall; NEW IWGP Intercontinental Champion
The Best in the World at What He Does is an IWGP Intercontinental Champion for the first time in his career! Though, according to Jericho, he’s a 10-time Intercontinental Champion because he’s counting his nine WWE Intercontinental Championship reigns. But whether one, nine or ten, whether by hook or by crook, Y2J conquers the leader of LIJ! We go to break while things are sorted out.
NJPW on AXS returns…
Jericho has his hand raised, and the announcement is made. He stands up and drops elbows and fists on Naito! Jericho isn’t a very classy winner, because the second he gets the belt in his hands, he uses it to attack Naito! Red Shoes reprimands Jericho, but Jericho ignores him as he celebrates. Jericho then takes off his leather belt from his pants, and makes it into strap to whip Naito with over and over. This is insult to injury, but also some injury on top. Evil rushes out to fight Jericho off his LIJ leader! Jericho hits Evil with that leather fist but Evil clobbers Jericho down with a clothesline! Evil grabs the leather belt to whip at Jericho, but Jericho gets away with his championship belt.
Jericho confiscates a commentary headset to shout “You see that, Naito? And who the Hell are you?” Jericho is talking about Evil there, and promises that if Evil butts in again, he’ll see what happens, too. Y2J takes his belt away with Evil looking on. Jericho reigns now, but will Evil bring his “tenth” reign to an early end?
Evil helps Naito to the back, but sets him down a moment. Evil speaks for them. “Hey, Jericho. You messed up this time, you son of a bitch.” Is that Evil’s way of saying he wants to fight Jericho for the title next?
Jericho himself kicks his way into his press conference. He knocks the chair and the beer away so that the reporters can focus on the blood on Jericho’s hands. “This is the blood of Naito and the blood of Chris Jericho. Because two men just beat the sh*t out of each other” in one of Jericho’s toughest matches ever. Naito is an excellent wrestler, Jericho will admit that. But Jericho says that this win means he’s here to stay! Jericho is champion, and he takes that seriously. Naito didn’t like the title, so it works out since Jericho wants to keep it, “from now until the moment I lose it.” He vows to eat, sleep, go to the bathroom, all with this title nearby. No one believed Jericho could do it, but he did. This is the Reign of Jericho, Drink It in, Man. And choke on it.
With the G-1 Special 2018 fast approaching, it makes sense for AXS to show two hours of Dominion coverage tonight to catch up a bit. Obviously this isn’t all of it, either, as there’s definitely Okada VS Omega left to show. That’ll be next week, for a two hour special what with that match lasting 70+ minutes. But the four they showed tonight were all astounding, with shocking title changes. I didn’t think Elgin would win against Goto and Taichi, but it happened and it was impressive. Hiromu Takahashi truly deserves to be Jr. Heavyweight Champion, he’s on such a roll both with the Japanese crowd and around the world. Same goes for the Young Bucks winning the Heavyweight Tag titles, because they’re the most popular and talented tag team around.
Jericho VS Naito was crazy good with the entire attack before the match. Jericho has always been great at transforming his personality and style into new, fresh ideas, and this more vicious Heel of his is great. He really had the fans hating him and rooting for Naito, but in the end, Jericho uses all the tricks in the book and wins. On the surface, it looks like LIJ is down in the dumps aside from Hiromu. Evil & Sanada lose their tag titles, and Naito loses his IC title, but Evil is the one to come out and defend Naito from Jericho. Perhaps these losses are for everyone in LIJ to move up. Naito can worry about the world title while Evil goes after Jericho, Hiromu can defend his Jr. Heavyweight title, and perhaps Bushi joins Sanada as a heavyweight. Either that, or they go for the NEVER Openweight titles.
My Score(s): Part 1 – 8.7/10; Part 2 – 8.8/10; Overall – 8.8/10
Mitchell’s WWE Monday Night Raw Results & Report! (3/25/19)
Kurt Angle’s Farewell Tour leads him to who!?
Raw grows wilder as Mania draws nearer! Will Ronda Rousey face any consequences? Will Roman Reigns accept Drew McIntyre’s challenge? Angle VS SAMOA JOE?!
- Beat the Clock Challenge: Ronda Rousey VS Sarah Logan; Rousey wins in 1:25.
- Beat the Clock Challenge: Charlotte Flair VS Ruby Riott; Flair fails the Beat the Clock Challenge.
- Beat the Clock Challenge: Becky Lynch VS Liv Morgan; Lynch wins in 1:18, and wins the challenge.
- WWE Intercontinental Championship Contender’s Handicap Match: Bobby Lashley & Lio Rush VS Finn Balor; changed to…
- WWE Intercontinental Championship Contender’s Handicap Match: Bobby Lashley w/ Lio Rush & Jinder Mahal w/ The Singh Brothers; Finn wins and will challenge Bobby Lashley for the title at Wrestlemania.
- Aleister Black & Ricochet VS The Revival; Black & Ricochet win.
- Sasha Banks w/ Bayley VS Natalya w/ Beth Phoenix; Banks wins, by disqualification.
- Baron Corbin VS Apollo Crews; Corbin wins.
- Kurt Angle VS Samoa Joe; Angle wins.
- Last Man Standing: Drew McIntyre VS Dean Ambrose; McIntyre wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Beat the Clock Challenge: Ronda Rousey VS Sarah Logan!
The Raw Women’s Champion and her two Wrestlemania opponents will main event Wrestlemania! But that’s in a couple weeks. Tonight, there’s a lot of pride on the line as the Baddest Woman on the Planet divides up the Riott Squad with The Queen and The Man! Who will be the fastest winner on Raw to have bragging rights going into New York?
Before the match, Ronda picks up the mic. Boston wants Becky but they’ll have to hear the champ out first. “For the first time ever, women are going to be the main event at Wrestlemania!” The Raw Women’s Championship, Rousey VS Flair VS Lynch! And Ronda only has one thing left to say: “You’re welcome.” She throws down the mic, but then picks it back up to say something else. Not that the fans appreciate any of her words. Ronda vows to make Charlotte and Becky tap out at the same time! But just as she drops the mic, she picks it up again. She has no idea what this Beat the Clock Challenge is, it sound stupid, so let’s just get this farce over with. Now she’s done talking. Sarah Logan makes her way out and the challenge truly begins!
But wait! The Man makes sure to come out and say something herself! “It’s good to be back in Boston!” And Ronnie, stop being so weird. Ronda came here with her big money contract and the whole world yawned. Every opportunity, every advantage, the best of the best, and yet no one gave a damn until The Man came around! The fans know that the best thing to happen to Ronda is Becky! That’s why they’re the main event of Mania! And one more thing, Ronda knows how this ends: Ronda’s title above Becky’s head, and her own head beneath Becky’s boot.
But here comes The Queen, too! Charlotte has her own mic and just hears “Blah blah blah”. Yes, the women are the main event! But not because of Becky nor because of Ronda. It’s all because of what Charlotte’s done! That’s why she was handpicked to be the main event! Charlotte and Becky stand-by ringside while Ronda finally gets to her Beat the Clock Challenge with Sarah.
The bell rings and the timer starts counting while Sarah bails out! Ronda gives chase and Sarah keeps away from Ronda. Ruby and Liv try to block Ronda’s path but Ronda blasts through them. Sarah turns around and dropkicks Ronda down! Then she whips Ronda hard into ropes! Ronda clutches her arm while Sarah stomps away. Sarah grabs the legs and ties them up for an inverted cloverleaf! Ronda endures the leg hold as Sarah drags her away from the ropes! Ronda grits her teeth and sees the clock climb as she claws her way back. She gets the ropes but then climbs up and around to drag Sarah into a hanging armbar! She lets go at 4 but goes after Sarah with a SUPERWOMAN PUNCH! Ronda puts on the armbar and Sarah taps! Ronda wins!
Winner: Ronda Rousey, by submission, and in 1:25
The time has been set, will either Queen or Man be able to do better than the Baddest Woman on the Planet?
Charlotte steps into the ring and takes her turn.
Beat the Clock Challenge: Charlotte Flair VS Ruby Riott!
The bell rings and the time ticks down. Charlotte goes fast but Ruby dodges and dumps her out! Charlotte hurries back in and boots Ruby down. She CHOPS and CHOPS on Ruby, then gets a takedown. Ruby pushes Charlotte away and we hit the minute warning. Ruby kicks Charlotte on her return, then wrenches. Charlotte decks Ruby with a right! Then hits the backbreaker to STO! Charlotte has to hurry, but Ruby dodges Natural Selection! Ruby gets a complete shot! Cover, TWO!! Ruby just has to play defense with 20 seconds left. She grabs Charlotte’s arm and toys with her. Riott Kick, CAUGHT! Figure Four on, Figure Eight! Ruby holds on, time runs out!!
Charlotte fails the Beat the Clock Challenge
Ronda knew Charlotte wouldn’t, but now Becky wants her shot.
Beat the Clock Challenge: Becky Lynch VS Liv Morgan!
The Man is ready but the Juvenile Delinquent distracts her, and Charlotte BOOTS Becky in that distraction! The Queen takes her frustrations out on her, and then lets Liv do what she wants. Liv shouts for the bell and it rings. Liv fires off a mudhole stomp on Becky but backs off at 4 with shrill shrikes. She stomps Becky right back down then drags her to a cover, TWO! The Squad keeps Liv focused as she thrashes Becky around in a chinlock. Becky endures as we reach less than a minute. Boston rallies and Becky fights her way up. Becky arm-drags out then throws haymakers and European Uppercuts! Things speed up as Becky rallies! Calf kick at 30 seconds but Becky keeps going.
Becky wants the arm but Liv school boys Becky into buckles! Liv gets away with 15 seconds, but her code breaker is blocked! Jackknife cover, Becky wins!!
Winner: Becky Lynch, by pinfall
And with seven seconds to spare! Ronda doesn’t care, because what does this matter in a Triple Threat? But Becky still feels good that she did better than both Ronnie and Charlie. Will she feel great when she beats them both for the title?
WWE Intercontinental Championship Contender’s Handicap Match: Bobby Lashley & Lio Rush VS Finn Balor!
The Extraordinary Man managed to beat both the Almighty and the Man of the Hour in a situation like this before, but now he has to do it again to earn a title match at Wrestlemania. Lashley & Lio come out and Lio tells Finn’s Road to Wrestlemania goes through them. This is not a road Finn wants to be on. Finn could’ve quit while he’s ahead, but now he’ll be forced to leave the game as a hot piece of garbage, just like Gronkowski. Boston takes offense to that. But as much as Lio wants to be part of ending Finn’s dreams, it’s Braun Strowman’s fault that he’s not medically cleared to compete. But that’s okay, Lashley has a different tag team partner now: Jinder Mahal!
WWE Intercontinental Championship Contender’s Handicap Match: Bobby Lashley w/ Lio Rush & Jinder Mahal w/ The Singh Brothers!
The Modern Day Maharaja joins forces with the Rocky Mountain Machine! Will they leave Finn for dead on the side of the Road to Wrestlemania?
The bell rings and Lashley starts. Fans fire up for Finn as he ties up with Lashley. Lashley knees low then throws Finn to his corner. Lashley throws body shots then puts Finn in another corner for more body shots. He whips Finn corner to corner hard, but Finn dodges! Finn shoulders in but has to fight off Mahal and the Singh Brothers! Lio distracts and Lashley blasts Finn down! The deck is stacked for Finn as we go to break.
Raw returns and Finn fires forearms on Lashley. But Lashley shoves Finn back and tackles him into the corner! Lashley rams his shoulder in on Finn again and again but backs off at 4. Lashley goes corner to corner but Finn Slingblades him down! Mahal tags in and whips Finn. Finn reverses, Mahal sunset flips but Finn rolls through to dropkick Mahal down! Finn dodges Mahal and forearms Mahal into Lashley! Then he gets Mahal with the elbow drop DDT! Lashley returns but gets a takedown and double stomps! Finn clotheslines Mahal out! Finn builds speed but the Singhs swipe his feet! Mahal returns but Finn sends him out, to FLY! He hits EVERYONE! Finn puts Mahal in fast, then climbs up top! COUP DE GRACE!! Cover, Finn wins!
Winner: Finn Balor, by pinfall; NEW #1 Contender to the WWE Intercontinental Championship
He’s going to Wrestlemania! Lashley again loses because of who he teams with, but now it’ll be Finn and Lashley 1v1. Lashley takes his anger out on the Singhs, then SPEARS Mahal! Will Finn finally get the better of Bobby directly? Or will he get dominated by the Dominator on the Grandest Stage of Them All?
Ladies and Gentlemen: Elias.
The Drifter is already in New York, Times Square even. There have been many iconic stars performing on Broadway, but Elias will be bigger than them all! Times Square is buzzing to walk with Elias. Elias has gotten used to this, so he’ll play something for us. Wait, this other bearded guitarist wants in. Elias is a solo act. But typical New Yorkers: big ego, little talent. Go sell out a subway station, Elias has Mania to focus on. Will Elias really be the hit he thinks he is?
Aleister Black & Ricochet VS The Revival!
The Embodiment of the End and the King of Flight look to take over Tag Team wrestling in the WWE from NXT to the main roster. The Dusty Rhodes Classic isn’t quite over, but can this unexpected duo stake a claim for the Raw Tag Team Championships in time for Wrestlemania?
Forget the bell, it’s time to brawl! The moment Dash & Dawson hit the ring, Aleister & Ricochet start hitting them! Dash & Dawson turn things around and whip Aleister and Ricochet at each other, but Aleister gives Ricochet a boost to missile dropkick Dawson down! Aleister then throws forearms and kicks on Dash. Ricochet adds an enziguri and Dash cowers in his corner. Fans chant for “NXT! NXT!” as Aleister dares Dash to bring the fight. The bell rings and Dawson anchors Aleister’s feet! Dash fires off then tags in Dawson. The Revival mug Aleister then put him in an open corner. Dawson throws uppercuts then drags Aleister out for a hammerlock. Dawson brings Aleister to the mat but Aleister endures.
Fans rally as Aleister works his way up. Aleister powers his way towards his corner but Dawson throws body shots and forearms. Aleister roundhouses Dawson down then tags in Ricochet! The unexpected duo double whip then leap frog with Dawson, before Aleister sweeps the legs and Ricochet adds a basement dropkick! Dash runs in but is sent right back out! Aleister fakes The Revival out, but Ricochet gets them around the corner! Dash goes down but Dawson gets a Meteora! The #TopGuys are down on the ground while we go to break.
Raw returns and Dawson grinds his forearm in Ricochet’s face. Fans rally as Ricochet endures the seated abdominal stretch, then stands up and heads for his corner. Aleister reaches out to him but Dawson scoop slams Ricochet down. Dawson drops but misses the elbow, and again! Dash tags in as Ricochet rolls to the apron. Ricochet shoulders in then slingshots, but into Dash’s arms! Dash and Dawson combine for an assisted brain buster! Cover, TWO! Ricochet survives and The Revival grows frustrated. Dash drags Ricochet over but Ricochet throws forearms. Dash knees low then Dawson tags back in. Dawson stomps and toys with Ricochet, then whips. Ricochet kicks Dawson down, but Dash tags in. Dash runs over but Ricochet dodges to get him with a neckbreaker!
Ricochet and Dash are down but crawling for their corners. Dash tags Dawson, Ricochet tags Aleister! Aleister rallies on The Revival! Aleister sweeps the legs to drive in the knee! Dash returns, but The Revival get a double quebrada! Aleister throws Dash out then goes after Dawson. Dawson punches but gets a strike fest! Another swift knee, cover, TWO! Aleister keeps his focus as he stalks Dawson. He lifts Dawson with his foot but Dash drags Ricochet off the apron! Aleister goes after Dash but Dawson sunset flips! TWO, and both men dodge. Dawson fakes Aleister out for a DDT! Cover, but Ricochet breaks it! Dash shoves Aleister out and The Revival double whips. Ricochet tags in and Aleister goes up and over. Aleister hits a DOUBLE Black Mass?! Ricochet hits his 630! Cover, Ricochet & Aleister win!
Winners: Aleister Black & Ricochet, Ricochet pinning
The Revival miscalculate and now NXT’s air strike has another victory! But The Revival are quick to point out they’re still the champions. Will the #TopGuys have to put those titles on the line at Wrestlemania against the Dutch Destroyer and the One and Only?
Drew McIntyre is here!
The Scottish Terminator vows to destroy The Shield one by one! He made his challenge to Roman Reigns last week, will he get his answer? We find out, after the break.
Raw returns and McIntyre has a mic. “I don’t give a damn if you like me, but you will respect me.” McIntyre says a week is a long time to wait for an answer. He’s actually a little nervous, and Roman might still be unsure what to say. So McIntyre will share some footage, and wants us to know that he could’ve finished Roman any time but didn’t. The footage is as expected, McIntyre attacking Roman Reigns from out of nowhere and kicking his head into a post. Then last week, McIntyre challenged Roman to a match but actually wants Roman to say “No” because of how badly McIntyre will beat him at Wrestlemania.
Now in the present, McIntyre really hopes Roman’s family members got through his thick skull to say no. McIntyre “exterminated” the roach, Dean Ambrose. And then last week, McIntyre beat the #1 Contender, Seth Rollins! McIntyre is sure what the superstar, Roman Reigns, wants and that is “Yes”! But McIntyre appeals to Joe Anoa’i, the man, husband and father. Hasn’t his family been through enough? “Think of your children!” They already watched Daddy fight for his life once. Do they really have to go through that again at Wrestlemania when they know it’s a losing battle? Fans chant for Roman, and McIntyre says he’ll wait all night if he has to. But Roman Reigns appears now!
Roman goes to the ring and grabs himself a mic. Roman and McIntyre stare down, and Roman says he accepts the challenge. But listen very closely to what Joe has to say. “Don’t you ever run your mouth about my wife and kids.” Roman fires off haymakers! He gets McIntyre down and then throws him into a post! McIntyre tumbles out but Roman’s still on him with big uppercuts. Roman throws him into barriers, then back into the ring. Fans are fired up as Roman walks over, but McIntyre low blow uppercuts Roman back! McIntyre drags himself to a corner while Roman gasps and sputters. McIntyre aims with a glare as Roman stands. CLAYMORE! Referees appear and get McIntyre to leave, but the damage is done. Will Roman get his revenge at Wrestlemania?
Drew McIntyre spots Dean Ambrose backstage.
“What did you call me out there? A cockroach?” McIntyre “exterminated” him? Doesn’t feel that way. So how about another try tonight? Ambrose VS McIntyre, Last Man Standing!! McIntyre does not know how Ambrose is standing now. But he promises Ambrose won’t be standing after tonight. Is Ambrose trying to get himself killed?!
Sasha Banks w/ Bayley VS Natalya w/ Beth Phoenix!
This match didn’t quite finish last week since Nia Jax & Tamina interfered. But now The Boss of Boston and the Queen of Harts will have it out! Can Natty punch a Wrestlemania title match ticket for the Divas of Doom?
The bell rings and Sasha and Natty tie up. Natty puts Sasha on the ropes but backs off to slap her! Sasha slaps back! Then goes acrobatic for an arm-drag! Sasha blocks and arm-drags Natty again, then grins as she circles with Natty again. Natty blocks a kick and throws Sasha down, to then hook the legs for a Surfboard! Natty holds Sasha high overhead, but Sasha endures as Boston cheers her on. Sasha slips free and rolls out, then hits a basement meteora! Cover, TWO! Sasha keeps her cool while she drags Natty up. Natty rolls Sasha up, TWO! Natty brings Sasha up but Sasha sunset flips, only for Natty to block to the Sharpshooter! Sasha fights out and shoves Natty all the way out!
Beth keeps Bayley at bay while Sasha fetches Natty. Natty throws hands, then throws Sasha at the apron. Sasha spins around and headscissors Natty down! Then a knee into the barriers! Sasha leaves Natty behind while we go to break.
Raw returns and Natty has Sasha in a Canadian torture rack. Sasha endures as Bayley and Boston rally for her. Natty keeps up the pressure but Sasha slips out to a sunset flip! Cover, TWO, but Sasha blocks a kick to give a kick! Sasha runs and wheelbarrows, but Natty sits Sasha down! Natty then walks over Sasha, but gets tripped! Sasha gets the Bank Statement crossface! Natty reaches, crawls, but rolls Sasha away to a Sharpshooter!! Sasha endures now, reaches for the ropes, but Natty drags her away! Sasha finds a second wind and rolls Natty into a corner! Bayley and Boston are relieved, but the Samoan Dynasty attacks again! They get Bayley, then rush the ring! SUPERKICK for Sasha!
Winner: Sasha Banks, by disqualification
The Glamazon rushes the ring to tackle Tamina! And she throws hands on Nia! Fireman’s carry, but Tamina saves Nia. Beth still fights and runs Nia over! She deflects the Superkick to fire off on Tamina! She gets the chicken wings, for the Glam Slam! Natty regroups with Beth and they hold the ring! Fans let Beth know “You Still Got It!” Not only that, but Beth still wants it! She wants tag title gold with her fellow Diva of Doom! Will the Boss & Hug Connection have legendary opponents for Wrestlemania? And what of the Samoan Dynasty? Or the IIconics?
The WWE reveals the newest Hall of Fame inductees: The Hart Foundation!
Bret Hart and Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart were the Best There Is, Best There Was, and the Best There Ever Will Be in tag team wrestling. It means so much to the Hart Family, especially Natalya, that The Anvil is finally going in!
Backstage interview with Kurt Angle!
The Olympic Gold Medalist continues the Farewell Tour against Samoa Joe! Why such a tough challenge this close to Wrestlemania? Angle appreciates Joe for coming over from SmackDown for the night. And this tour is about retiring on his terms. Angle promises to be ready for Baron Corbin, and Joe will be his greatest test yet. But Corbin comes over and chuckles. Corbin appreciates watching this farewell tour. How many years has Angle been around? How old is he? Does he realize the fans are cheering not because he’s a great competitor, but because they feel sorry for him? Considering he’s half the man he used to be. Corbin promises the news after Mania will be “Former Gold Medalist tarnishes his career”. Angle simply tells Corbin, “Screw you.” Will Angle show Corbin he’s still good enough when going against the United States Champion?
Backstage interview with The Boss & Hug connection.
Clearly the Women’s Tag Team division is heating up. Nia and Tamina keep attacking, The IIconics won last week, and- Sasha says they vowed to take on anyone, anywhere, anytime! So how about all three teams at Wrestlemania?! A Fatal 4 Way!? Are the inaugural champions going to become former champions in New York?
It’s time for another Moment of Bliss!
The Goddess doesn’t sit on stage, she heads right for the ring. Will she be able to reconcile the Monster Among Men and Saturday Night Live’s Colin Jost?
Raw returns as Alexa sits on her set in the ring. “Welcome to A Moment of Bliss.” Alexa isn’t sure what it is, but since becoming the host, the Wrestlemania card gets better and better. The women are main eventing now! Is she good or what? But Alexa is at a crossroads, because with two weeks left, she feels like her moment and her reputation are in jeopardy. She shares footage of when Colin Jost put his foot in his mouth when he mouthed off to Strowman. Strowman put his hands around Colin’s throat and almost choked the man out. Then when Colin tried to apologize with a car, Strowman ripped the car apart! “That looks like a recipe for a public relations disaster.” So Alexa hopes this becomes A Moment of Healing. First, The Monster Among Men himself, BRAUN!
Strowman storms out to the ring and shakes hands with Alexa before taking a seat. Alexa welcomes Strowman and knows what happens when Strowman’s temper gets the best of him. Strowman’s flipped an ambulance with Roman Reigns inside, yanked down the stage on top of Brock Lesnar, and utterly destroyed one of Vince McMahon’s limousines. “Sure did.” Then what would happen if Michael Che and Colin Jost were to #GetThoseHands? The saying goes, “It’s the thought that counts.” Jost got him that tiny little convertible, Strowman thought about smashing Jost’s face in. Thank you for sharing your feelings, because that is the first step in the healing process. The next is listening, because via satellite, Michael and Colin!
Michael and Colin say hi, and Colin tries to compliment Strowman. Colin admits he made a mistake in Philly. He won’t put on a Mets hat, he’ll put on a Yankees hat. Boston hates that. Michael says that as a lifelong fan of the WWE, and even of Strowman, Michael respects Strowman. But Strowman also responded badly when he went after Colin. Colin may not be funny, but he’s a good guy. Colin wants to be a mentor, sincerely. He went to Harvard. His parents paid millions of dollars to get him on the Women’s Cross Country Team. Wait… Well, anyway, Colin can definitely teach Strowman how to eat, or how to read, or how to do his taxes.
And Colin knows Strowman is big and strong at 5’11” and 180 pounds, but they can talk this out. Michael says this isn’t how to do it. Colin sent him a car! Strowman, consider therapy! Or at least pay Colin back, with interest, and get him an autograph from Brock Lesnar. Or maybe they won’t go to Wrestlemania! Fans don’t care but Alexa can’t let that happen. Strowman has an idea. Michael said someone needs to take care of this, one way or another. Strowman goes with “option number three.” If Colin wants to make this right, he’ll get in the Andre the Giant Battle Royal! No way! He’s not- Listen up, smart guy! Get in the battle royal or Strowman will find you when you’re all alone! Michael accepts for Colin! WHAT?!
Listen, there’s a chance Colin will get hurt in the Battle Royal, but he will DEFINITELY be dead if this happens backstage. Michael promises Colin will be in that match and Michael will correspond alone. Colin says Michael’s the real WWE fan so he’s in, too! Colin starts a chant, but Strowman tells him to shut up. Can Alexa make this happen? As the host of Wrestlemania, she can’t do this for Strowman’s blood-lust. Michael breathes a sigh of relief, but Alexa was just kidding. This is happening! And if Michael and Colin no-show, they’ll be wondering for the rest of their lives when they’ll #GetTheseHands!
Elias is still in New York.
The Drifter has made his way to Madison Square Garden, “the world’s most famous arena.” Now it’s not Boston’s Garden, because that houses a bunch of slobs. Elias has sold this place out three times already, more than Billy Joel ever cold. Elias is given change? Does this city have no idea who he is?!
Baron Corbin VS Apollo Crews!
“Boston’s Favorite Son” is apparently anything but that, as he has every other accolade of his listed. But will he at least redeem himself from last week’s quick defeat?
Raw returns and Apollo rolls Corbin up! TWO, but Apollo mule kicks and sunset flips. TWO, and now Apollo crucifix, TWO! Apollo dropkicks Corbin to a corner then baits Corbin in. Corbin slides out then in but into a dropkick! Corbin staggers and Apollo clotheslines him out! Apollo hits the moonsault off the apron, then runs back in, only for Corbin to toss him into the post! Corbin refreshes the count to drag Apollo up and throw him into barriers. He puts Apollo back in the ring then shoves him into buckles. Corbin lifts and tosses Apollo down! Cover, TWO! Corbin argues with the ref, but then points to the Wrestlemania sign to taunt fans that he’s still going, whether we like it or not.
Corbin drags Apollo up but Apollo clotheslines him back! Apollo baits Corbin into the corner again, then enziguris him down! Apollo climbs and leaps, frog splash! Cover, TWO!! Corbin survives and gets to a corner. He puts Apollo on the apron but Apollo shoulders in. Apollo slingshots and runs, but into End of Days! Cover, Corbin wins!
Winner: Baron Corbin, by pinfall
The Lone Wolf has redeemed himself, but this is far from satisfactory. He drags Apollo up for another End of Days! Corbin grins and applauds, but will he be feeling good after facing Kurt Angle at Mania?
Seth Rollins is here!
The Architect, Mr. Royal Rumble 2019, goes to the ring and grabs a mic. Boston is ready to “Slay The Beast!” so Rollins cuts to the chase. Brock Lesnar and Seth Rollins are not cut from the same cloth. The two roads that meet at Wrestlemania could not be any different. But there is only one road out, and it will be forged with the Universal Championship and by the man who will define the WWE’s future. It will either be Rollins or Lesnar, “and that’s really heavy.” But Rollins wants to carry that burden! Rollins wants to be a champion who inspires people. The champions who inspired Rollins were Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart, Ric Flair, Triple H, and even John Cena. But Brock Lesnar does not inspire people.
It goes without saying that this will be Rollins’ biggest match yet. Rollins has wanted it for a long time, but until recently, he didn’t realize how much it means to the fans. Rollins did a meet ‘n’ greet and everyone who came up to him, regardless of who they were, they all said the same thing. Fans chant “Burn It Down!” and “Slay The Beast!” and Rollins says it was something like that. “Please beat Lesnar at Wrestlemania.” Rollins promised he’ll do everything he can to stop Lesnar, but now he has no choice. He MUST beat Brock Lesnar! Rollins refuses to let Lesnar be the champion that defines this company! In 13 days, Rollins will stand up to the bully that is The Beast.
And what Lesnar doesn’t understand is that with an army behind Rollins, he WILL be unstoppable! Together, they will march to Suplex City and #BURN IT- “Ladies and Gentlemen!” The Advocate, Paul Heyman, is here in Boston to say, “Thank you.” Heyman thanks Rollins for letting him know that the match is now a “Handicap Match”. It’ll be the reigning, defending, undisputed Universal Heavyweight Champion, BROCK LESNAR VS Seth Rollins & The WWE Universe. Heyman likes Lesnar’s odds, because Rollins’ chances of winning are zero. “Do you know how pathetic you sound, Seth?” Rollins needs the fans’ love, support and affirmation? Or perhaps their thoughts and prayers? Heyman mocks other requests for thoughts and prayers, but especially Rollins needing help not being beaten and victimized by Lesnar.
Heyman says Rollins needs those thoughts and prayers, because Rollins doesn’t have a thought on how to defeat Lesnar, nor a prayer in doing so. This isn’t personal, but when Lesnar does win, Rollins needs to take it personally when he and the WWE Universe fail at Wrestlemania. Heyman tosses the mic but Rollins chases him up the ramp! Rollins scares Heyman and Heyman suddenly says he’s just saying this because Lesnar wanted him to. Rollins laughs. This isn’t about getting thoughts and prayers, this is about answering them. “We are going to Wrestlemania! We are going to beat Brock Lesnar!” And WE are going to BURN IT DOWN!! Rollins carries the banner for the fans, but will he plant the flag in Suplex City’s ashes?
Kurt Angle makes his way out, and the “You Suck!” turns to Heyman. The Olympic Gold Medalist brings the Farewell Tour to Boston, but will it continue to be successful on the Road to Wrestlemania?
Kurt Angle VS Samoa Joe!
Angle and the Samoan Submission Machine have met before, but they’ll have their first and last match in the WWE in Boston! Will Angle win over the WWE United States Championship? Or will Joe tuck Angle in and make him go to sleep before ever making it to Wrestlemania?
Raw returns as Samoa Joe makes his entrance. Joe has a mic and asks Angle to forgive him. He forgot his bouquet of flowers to give to him. And though Joe knows the “scumbag New England mouth-breathers want it”, it’ll be a cold day into Hell before Angle can just ride off into the sunset. This is Wrestlemania Season, and stars around the world are getting ready for the big night. For Angle’s last night in Boston, Joe has a special gift. A good night’s sleep is very important, and Joe couldn’t think of a better way to say good-bye than putting Angle out once and for all. The bell rings and this very tense good-bye match begins!
Joe and Angle stare down, and then Joe headbutts Angle down! Joe stomps away on Angle, then stands him up for those swift jabs! Angle counter punches but Joe rakes his eyes! Joe brings Angle out and snap suplexes, but barely gets Angle over. Angle gets to a corner but Joe throws more hands. Fans rally behind Angle and he gets a waistlock on Joe! Joe elbows him off and snapmares him for stomps! Joe dropkicks Angle in the back, but Angle comes back with haymakers. Angle gets Joe on the ropes but Joe dumps Angle out, to DIVE! Joe bulldozes Angle into barriers and we go to break.
Raw returns and Angle fights his way out of Joe’s sleeper hold. Angle runs but Joe runs him over! Joe taunts Angle as he sits up. Joe puts him in the corner and trash talks before throwing more hands and CHOPS! Angle staggers away and Joe headbutts. Joe throws more jabs then brings Angle out for forearms. Joe runs but Angle ducks to German Suplex! Angle holds on for a second German Suplex! And then the hat trick! Cover, TWO! Angle gets back up and stalks Joe, but Joe fights out of the Angle Slam. Angle kicks but runs into an atomic drop. Joe boots and back sentons! Cover, TWO!! Angle lives and Joe is livid, but Joe keeps his eyes on Angle as he gets to a corner. Angle dodges Joe in the corner, ANGLE SLAM! Cover, TWO!! Joe survives and Angle can’t believe it.
Angle fires up and goes for the ankle! Joe pushes him away, then gets up, to catch Angle for a powerslam! Cover, TWO!! Angle barely escapes but Joe keeps his focus. Joe puts Angle in a corner and on the top rope. Joe wants the Buster but Angle pushes him away. Angle hits a missile dropkick! The straps come down and Angle stalks Joe again. Angle lifts but Joe slips out to fire forearms and headbutts. Joe grabs Angle but Angle arm-drags him away. Angle rocks Joe with a right but runs into the sleeper! Joe squeezes and Angle fades, but fans give him a second wind! Angle rolls Joe to a cover, Angle wins!
Winner: Kurt Angle, by pinfall
The Farewell Tour wins by the skin of Angle’s teeth! Joe is shocked, will he be able to snap back before facing Rey Mysterio at Wrestlemania? And what of Angle going over to SmackDown to face the Phenomenal AJ Styles?
Triple H is here!
The world heard what The Animal, Dave Batista, had to say about why he wants one more match at Wrestlemania, but now we hear The Game’s response, after the break.
Raw returns and HHH can’t believe the fans were giving an ovation that entire commercial break. It really was, trust him. But first thing’s first, congrats to the Raw Women’s Championship match for being THE main event at Wrestlemania. Congrats to them and all the women of WWE, past, present and future, because this was not given, it was earned. That’s the kind of thing that makes HHH happy. Just like coming out and realizing this mic is dry, unlike the one Batista spit all over. But some things upset HHH, like this thing buried in his pocket. He presents an envelope and a letter from Batista’s attorney. The letter states that Batista will not be competing at Wrestlemania after all. Unless HHH agrees to another stipulation.
This letter goes on and on, Batista says a lot of things like his recent realization that HHH started Evolution to protect himself. Really? Just figured that out 13 years later? Batista also realized that the moon isn’t made of cheese, so a big week for him. Batista also believes Evolution did nothing for him, except before then, he was just The Deacon following Reverend D-Von around. And then after Evolution, he was a world champion. Batista also believes HHH had an obsession that kept Batista down. Yet six world title reigns later, Batista quit when he couldn’t beat John Cena. Batista also thinks HHH kept Batista away from here, because HHH just refused to return his phone calls. HHH called Batista, but Batista’s manager said they should move Wrestlemania’s date to accommodate Batista’s shooting schedules.
But when the letter finally gets to Batista’s stipulation, as HHH will read now to properly reflect Batista’s feelings… “If you would like me to appear then at Wrestlemania, you will give me what I want. What I really, really want. I’ll tell you what I want, what I really, really want.” This goes on and on for pages! But the bottom line, Batista wants HHH’s career on the line. If Batista wins at Wrestlemania, HHH will never compete in the ring again. HHH tells “Dave” that he beat up a 70 year old man a year after being on his deathbed, all just to get a match at Mania. HHH agreed to that match, 75 THOUSAND people, and yet Batista still demands something. This is just another attempt by Batista to quit. HHH will not let Batista quit. He will make Batista stand up to his commitment.
Batista believes HHH is obsessed with Batista? HHH doesn’t give a crap about him! The only thing HHH is obsessed with is kicking Batista’s ass. And at this point in their careers, if HHH cannot beat a “self-deluded douchebag”, then he has no business being in the ring. If Batista wants HHH’s career on the line, “you’ve got it.” The Game plays Batista’s game, but will Batista regret even wanting to play?
Elias makes quite the haul.
“New York recognizes talent.” Elias has always felt that way. There’s maybe $2000 in his guitar case. New York is the greatest city in the world, so long as Elias is here. Elias will leave no doubt that there is one universal truth. And that is… you need to watch your money. A pickpocket gets away with some of Elias’ tips, but Elias will make way more than that at Wrestlemania. And then no one will doubt that WWE truly stands for #WalkWithElias. The pickpocket comes back to take the entire guitar case!
Last Man Standing: Drew McIntyre VS Dean Ambrose!
The Scottish Terminator thought he had terminated the Lunatic once and for all, but it seems even a Claymore off the stage wasn’t enough. Will Ambrose get payback for himself in such an extreme match? Or will McIntyre be the only one standing on the Road to Wrestlemania?
Raw returns once again as McIntyre makes his entrance. Ambrose is raring to go but the referee has him wait. The bell rings and Ambrose fires off! Ambrose punches and stomps McIntyre in a corner but McIntyre fights his way back out. McIntyre CHOPS Ambrose, then drags him up to CHOP again. McIntyre drags Ambrose up but Ambrose dodges to fire forearms. Ambrose whips but McIntyre reverses. Ambrose kicks and dumps McIntyre out. The Lunatic climbs up top and leaps but misses his Lunatic Elbow! McIntyre watches Ambrose as the count begins. The count climbs to 5 before Ambrose drags himself up. Ambrose stands at 8, but McIntyre is on him with a swinging slam into barriers! Ambrose is down again while we go to one last break.
Raw returns once again, and Ambrose headbutts McIntyre off the top rope. Ambrose adjusts and leaps but into a kendo stick SMASH! McIntyre SMACKS Ambrose more, then digs the stick’s bare tip into Ambrose’s face! McIntyre lets up to SMACK Ambrose against the ropes. The stick is splintered and McIntyre holds it up proudly. McIntyre dares Ambrose to stand back up, but Ambrose ducks and clotheslines McIntyre out! Ambrose builds speed and DIVES! Direct hit sends McIntyre into the barriers! They’re both down as the count begins. The count passes 5 but Ambrose is right up. McIntyre stands, too, but Ambrose throws hands. The Glasgow Kiss rocks Ambrose! McIntyre, bleeding from his back, brings Ambrose under the ring, to catapult guillotine him into the steel frame!
The referee counts on Ambrose but Ambrose is stirring. He stands at 5, but McIntyre has the steel steps! McIntyre rams Ambrose down! The referee counts again as Ambrose sputters and crawls. Ambrose forces himself up at 7! But McIntyre puts him back in the ring. McIntyre takes a chair from the timekeeper’s area and brings it into the ring. He wedges it in the corner and throws Ambrose. Ambrose slides to a stop and baits McIntyre in! McIntyre meets chair! DIRTY DEEDS! The count begins on McIntyre, but the Terminator stands at 8! Ambrose boots him back down then rains down rights! Ambrose hurries to fetch a TABLE! He sets it up in the corner to the liking of the fans. McIntyre manages to stand, and tackles Ambrose through the table!!
Fans lose their minds as the count begins again. McIntyre glares at Ambrose as Ambrose crawls from the wreckage. The count passes 5, then 7, and Ambrose stands at 9! CLAYMORE!! McIntyre knocks Ambrose right back down, and the count begins again. Ambrose slowly sits up but McIntyre looms over him. The count hits 10, McIntyre wins!
Winner: Drew McIntyre
The Terminator steps on Ambrose like the roach he called him. Will McIntyre do the same to Roman Reigns at Wrestlemania?
Wrestlemania’s growing closer, but it seems Raw is slowing down. There was literally no need for the Beat the Clock Challenge tonight, and certainly not if someone other than Ronda was going to win it. Granted, the fans loved seeing Becky beat Ronda’s time, and it is something Becky can brag about in the two weeks left, but what does any of this do? The announcement that the three of them are THE main event should’ve been enough. They can talk, take credit, all of that, but there’s no need for matches like this at this point in time. For that matter, not even sure about next week having a Six Woman Tag where they join forces against Riott Squad. Pretty sure there will be dysfunction, and yet also a way where The Riott Squad still loses. This build’s homestretch just hit a speed bump.
I’m not entirely sure why Vince insists Finn has to beat everyone other than Lashley to prove he’s worthy of the title. I suppose it’s great for Lashley, but Mahal being dragged in was obviously so Lashley could lose without taking the pin. Finn VS Lashley, actually going 1v1, is still going to be good, and I’m still hoping Finn finally gets that win on Lashley directly to put this to bed. Elias’ New York promos were great, but especially the last one. I wonder if his greatest performance, aka greatest interruption, will actually be bigger than Jeff Jarrett now… Aleister & Ricochet are doing great, though at the cost of The Revival. I have a bad feeling that if Aleister & Ricochet are going for main roster tag titles at Wrestlemania, that means The Forgotten Sons win the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic!!
So glad to see The WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship Fatal 4 Way IS happening! At the same time, Bayley seeing some of the Samoan sneak attack coming was good, because it really should’ve been obvious. This also gave Beth a great moment for herself to confirm that she’s coming back for this match. I still feel like it’s between Boss & Hug retaining or the IIconics taking the belts to SmackDown. SmackDown really needs to work on their Women’s Roster overall, so I’m leaning towards Boss & Hug retaining in a big way. The Strowman celebrity angle is starting to be like screeching brakes on the Road to Wrestlemania. For what it’s worth, everyone is properly selling the dialogue, it just seems weird that Colin and Michael will be in the Andre the Giant Battle Royal. I really hope Strowman still wins it all, that’s the only way to salvage this.
Corbin VS Crews was alright, but it’s probably one of the things that makes the most sense tonight. Corbin needed to keep himself afloat or he really would look like the wrong choice for Angle’s farewell match at Mania. Of course, the Farewell Tour is still hitting the right notes. Angle VS Joe was a bit slow at the start but it got going, and naturally Angle wins. It actually helps both stories, Angle’s and Joe’s, that the win was a quick pin and not a finisher. It’s good to push Angle not quite being in his prime, to bring concern that he might not beat Corbin. And for Joe, it seems quick pins are becoming his weakness as this happened when Mysterio pinned him. Also good to know Angle VS Styles and Angle VS Mysterio are coming, those are going to be great for the Farewell Tour, too.
As for Ambrose constantly getting beat by McIntyre, I can’t be sure the reason other than to boost McIntyre. Roman’s brawl with McIntyre was good, and I suppose it makes sense for McIntyre to stand tall thanks to dirty tactics. McIntyre VS Ambrose was good, but the commercial interruption and the shortness overall kept it from being great. If the Beat the Clock Challenge wasn’t a thing, all of that match time could’ve gone to this. Perhaps this is not only to boost McIntyre, but to make it seem less and less likely Ambrose will even be able to help Roman at Wrestlemania. Rollins had a great promo with Heyman tonight, but there’s no guarantees he actually will #SlayTheBeast. It might only be Roman having a good night at Wrestlemania at this point.
My Score: 7.7/10
(NOAH) WEEKLY NEWSLETTER VOL.28 ~ 24TH MARCH 2019
Hopefully the live stream peaked some extra interest in NOAH! So for everyone new or old that needs to catch up, Hisame’s Newsletters are the perfect one stop shop!
Hopefully the live stream peaked some extra interest in NOAH! So for everyone new or old that needs to catch up, Hisame’s Newsletters are the perfect one stop shop!
CURRENT TOUR RECAP
After the excitement of Hakata Stalene, NOAH headed back out to Osaka, and then further into the provinces.
At Osaka World Pavilion, Hi69 finished the match by doing the Stuka Splash on Yoshinari Ogawa, after it Ogawa seemed to be struggling a bit and had to be helped up and out of the ring, although eventually he was well enough to walk unaided.
But when Hi69 & Quiet Storm had their first singles match ever on the 20th March at Toyonaka, after the match the ring was stormed by Stinger members Yoshinari Ogawa and Kotaro Suzuki, who beat down Hi69 in revenge. It is unusual to see this happen in NOAH, although Kotaro Suzuki is capable of it (and people getting jumped does happen), it is very rare to see Yoshinari Ogawa do it. Minoru Tanaka came to the rescue.
Hi69 says he will make weight for the tag challenge (“I will get on the scales any time. However, please tell me the day before“), and has started a weight loss diary on his
Twitter, although he did admit to eating lots of meat and going up to 105.
Minoru Tanaka and Hi69 had their own post match beat down on Stinger on the 21st in Kanazawa.
KAZMA SAKAMOTO and Takashi Sugiura teamed together for the first time before they enter Global Tag League together, they seemed to get on pretty well, with KAZMA later paying tribute to Sugiura as “a symbol of NOAH’s strength”.
Naomichi Marufuji, who says he is searching for a purpose, had somewhat of a comedy match in Toyonaka with disco poses being pulled and kicking Masao Inoue in the face for messing around, but a new threat appears to be emerging from the next generation of Junior wrestlers regarding their own status being less than the heavyweights, although he didn’t make too much of a comment about it at the time, it does look like Daisuke Harada took on board Minoru Tanaka’s comments about the GHC Junior being the main event. Marufuji in a post match interview said he could see their hostility building to something, but he didn’t know yet.
A huge rivalry is brewing for Global Tag League 2019 between Kenoh & Kaito Kiyomiya and AXIZ (Katsuhiko Nakajima & Go Shiozaki), which started in Toyonaka and was heralded by a vicious kick battle between Kenoh and Nakajima. After the match, the two teams faced off, with Nakajima grinning evilly. Earlier on the tour, Marufuji (a veteran) was put in the unenviable position of teaming with them (the younger generation who are opposed to him), and at the end of a match which according to one attendee had a “sense of distance between them”, got kicked in the head by Nakajima after shaking hands with him.
Then Shiozaki lariated him.
In Kanazawa after the match (whereby Nakajima grinned in Kenoh’s face), Kiyomiya and Kenoh declared AXIZ to be a “wanted” tag-team.
Yoshiki Inamura won his second victory over Kinya Okada, whom he now refers to as “my rival”. He had teamed with his teacher, Masa Kitamiya, who had a big smile on his face and did genuinely seem pleased with his trainees progress. After three days of being chopped and kicked his chest was….
Maybach Taniguchi is still continuing in his monster mode, and refuses to change. His Sasumata is still being bought to the ring and used as a weapon, he is still attacking the ref after matches, speaking in grunts, and even Akitoshi Saito who seemed to be attempting to rehabilitate him, has given up. In Kanazawa they tagged together, but it all fell apart when they accidentally knocked each other down, got into an argument and then Taniguchi was defeated by the Funky Buster Bomb. Taniguchi stood in the ring as he and Saito pointed at each other threateningly as Saito left the ring.
Takashi Sugiura said that this would do no him no good in the end.
NOAH will celebrate the final night of “Spring Navigation 2019” at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo on Friday March 29th.
Global Tag League will return on the 6th April 2019, with the first night being held at Edion Arena Osaka on Saturday 6th April and finishing on 4th May at Korakuen Hall.
This years teams are as follows:
Katsuhiko Nakajima & Go Shiozaki (GHC Heavyweight Tag champions)
Kaito Kiyomiya & Kenoh
Mohammed Yone & Quiet Storm
Maybach Taniguchi & Yuji Hino
Takashi Sugiura & KAZMA SAKAMOTO
Atsushi Kotoge & Mitsuya Nagai
Akitoshi Saito & Masao Inoue
Masa Kitamiya & Yoshiki Inamura.
Due to being defeated by Kaito Kiyomiya for the GHC Heavyweight title, Naomichi Marufuji has said that he will not enter the league this year. However, there is a possibility that he may enter in the end, and probably with a surprise partner. Unspoken speculation has it that since KENTA’s 90 day release clause is up round about the time Global Tag League starts, it may well be KENTA who he enters with.
Personally, I think it is far more likely that Marufuji will enter with Masaaki Mochizuki.
KAZMA says he fears the team of Yuji Hino and Maybach Taniguchi, as Hino knows how to work Taniguchi, however “that dick is a one-man show.”
Atsushi Kotoge has named the team of himself and Mitsuya Nagai “The Revolutionary Cloak Army”
Akitoshi Saito and Masao Inoue were a comedy team last year, with Saito screwing over Inoue, and Inoue not really realizing as Saito kept denying it.
The big rivalry for Global Tag League 2019 this year is Kenoh & Kiyomiya vs AXIZ.
Atsushi Kotoge returns
Atsushi Kotoge will make his return in his hometown of Osaka on the 6th April. Katsuhiko Nakajima took the opportunity to take a shot at Kenoh by looking at the match (“The Revolutionary Cloak Army” vs Kenoh and Kiyomiya) to say, “you are in the opening match” (full card hasn’t been announced yet).
NOAH The Album
Track listing has been confirmed as:
Katsuhiko Nakajima: Genius of The Kick
Daisuke Harada: KTYM
Quiet Storm: MAD
Pro Wrestling NOAH theme: Brave
GHC Jnr Theme
GHC Tag theme
Kaito Kiyomiya: Explosion Soul
Atsushi Kotoge: Switch On
Masa Kitamiya: Go For Broke
Go Shiozaki: Enforcer
Naomichi Marufuji: Hysteric
Theme of Global League
RAN: SAKURETSU (Pro Wrestling NOAH’s official song)
You can pre-order your copy here
Following his highly praised tag against Naomichi Marufuji at the Giant Baba memorial show, Masaaki Mochizuki will be making his first appearance in Pro-Wrestling NOAH on the 29th March at Korakuen Hall, he will team with Masa Kitamiya & Yoshiki Inamura against Naomichi Marufuji and 50 Funky Powers.
- GHC Heavyweight Champion: Kaito Kiyomiya
- GHC Junior Champion: Minoru Tanaka
- GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: AXIZ (Go Shiozaki and Katsuhiko Nakajima)
- GHC Junior Tag Champions: Kotaro Suzuki & Yoshinari Ogawa
~ Hitoshi Kumano says he wants to challenge for the singles belt
~ Daisuke Harada was cheered on by his nephew in Osaka
~ Kenoh has been noted to be smiling a lot more now he is teaming with Kiyomiya; but don’t let this fool you. Kenoh is still after the GHC Heavyweight, Kiyomiya knows this and has said that they will never properly be friends. Despite the brotherly feeling between them, there is still a sense of rivalry underneath.
~ Katsuhiko Nakajima’ reaction to Yoshiki Inamura teaming with Masa Kitamiya was, “what’s his name? I don’t remember, he didn’t leave much of an impression“
~ Kaito Kiyomiya was again on the cover of “Weekly Pro”, he’s only twenty-two, but has already been on the cover about three or four times.
~ Takashi Sugiura imitated KAZMA SAKAMOTO’S scream
~ Katsuhiko Nakajima told a bald reporter that his head was “twinkling”.
~ After the three day in a row tour (and a week away from home), Hitoshi Kumano returned to his “children” (his French Bulldogs), and Takashi Sugiura returned home to his own dog, who wanted to immediately go outside, despite the fact it was 1.30am. He took it for a walk the next day.
~ Despite saying that he didn’t have to call Kenoh “Kenoh-san” anymore, this momentary lapse in manners is over, and Kiyomiya has gone back to calling him just that.
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