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Mitchell’s WWE NXT TakeOver: Chicago II! (6/16/18)

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NXT takes over Chicago once again! Johnny Wrestling and the Psycho Killer look to end their grudge where it all began, in a Chicago Street Fight! Who will stand tall at the end of this ruthless rematch? Plus, can the Embodiment of the End make the Leviathan #FadeToBlack? Or will he suffer another Freak Accident?

 

All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • NXT Tag Team Championships: The Undisputed Era’s Roderick Strong & Kyle O’Reilly VS Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch; The Undisputed Era wins and retains the NXT Tag Team Championships.
  • Ricochet VS Velveteen Dream; Ricochet wins.
  • NXT Women’s Championship: Shayna Baszler VS Nikki Cross; Shayna wins and retains the NXT Women’s Championship.
  • NXT Championship: Aleister Black VS Lars Sullivan; Aleister wins and retains the NXT Championship.
  • Chicago Street Fight: Johnny Gargano VS Tommaso Ciampa; Ciampa wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

It’s the NXT TakeOver Kickoff Show!

Charly Caruso, Sam Roberts and Pat McAfee are in Chicago to make sure everyone watching knows exactly what to expect tonight.

EC3 joins the Kickoff panel.

Mr. Top One Percent presents his first bit of #NX3 merch, and says he loves the “Windy Apple.” The NXT Universe is buzzing with the #OneAndOnlyDream match, but what does that do to EC3? EC3 gives the shirt to McAfee to teach Sam a lesson. He does admit that the star-studded match could dictate the future, but The Top One Percent dictates fate just by showing up and getting fans to chant. EC3 doesn’t need to be in a match to change things, he just needs to be here.

McAfee supports EC3, he has the second best tan in NXT. Who has THE best? Drake the Ref. That’s true. EC3 does special things in the ring, too. EC3 has had victory after victory after victory, “stupid Sam.” The Million Dollar Man with a Billion Dollar Body is ready for the future, when will he get to make his next TakeOver mark?

Adam Cole appears to join the Kickoff Show!

He’s surprised to see McAfee, seeing as how he’s doing worse being here than being a punter. Cole is not concerned about Lorcan & Burch taking the tag team titles from O’Reilly & Strong. In fact, he’s annoyed those two are even challenging his friends at all. Seems Cole is taking the night off, though. “Taking the night off”? He’s the NXT North American Champion. He’s not the best in NXT, in WWE, but all over the world! Cole does what he wants and when he wants. His boys are opening the main show, so he’s going to go help them prepare. Will the Undisputed Era keep hold of those NXT Tag Team Championships against the one-two combination?

 

TakeOver: Chicago II begins!

“Pain.” Physical or mental suffering. It targets the weak and strong alike. Pain is a weapon. Pain is a motivator. And pain is at the root of all conflict. “But ultimately, pain leaves you with a choice: You can either feel it, or you can inflict it.” Pain takes over the Windy City, but who will overcome it to leave the winners?

 

NXT Tag Team Championships: The Undisputed Era’s Roderick Strong & Kyle O’Reilly VS Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch!

Roderick Strong betrayed Pete Dunne in New Orleans to #ShockTheSystem and take those titles from the Authors of Pain. But the brawlers from across the waters look to shock them back with their one-two combination. Will the Undisputed Era continue their TakeOver streak? Or will they be knocked out by the underdogs they underestimate?

Chicago is thunderous for “Undisputed!” as the bell rings. Strong starts against Lorcan, and they tie up. Strong gets down and around, and toys with Lorcan. Lorcan and Strong tie up again, and Strong gets the headlock. Lorcan powers out and pushes Strong to a corner, but Strong goes up and over. Things speed up, and Lorcan runs Strong over with a back elbow. Burch tags in and takes Strong’s arm. Strong turns things around with a facelock, and backs Burch down to tag in O’Reilly. O’Reilly headbutts and headlocks Burch, then throws him with a takedown. O’Reilly throws hands, but Burch stands up. Burch hits back with body shots, then powers out, but O’Reilly rolls and boots Burch back.

They run again, but Burch catches O’Reilly’s leg as he leaps to bring him down. Burch then drags O’Reilly up and around for a European Uppercut. O’Reilly hits back but Burch knocks him down. Tag to Lorcan, and they double whip O’Reilly into double elbows. Strong comes in but they’re ready, and double snap suplex Strong onto O’Reilly! Lorcan & Burch coordinate, and go corner to corner with clotheslines. They go back to back as O’Reilly & Strong stagger, to then clothesline them both out. The one-two is in control while the Undisputed Era regroups with Cole. O’Reilly goes back into the ring with the fans behind them.

O’Reilly uses his ground stance but Lorcan wants nothing to do with it. Strong reaches at Lorcan, which is enough of a distraction for O’Reilly to kick away on. O’Reilly backs Lorcan into a corner and throws muay thai knees. Lorcan turns it around and CHOPS. O’Reilly tries but Lorcan dodges to CHOP more. O’Reilly grabs Lorcan in a headlock, Lorcaon powers out, but O’Reilly runs him over with a shoulder. Things speed up, the kitchen sink knee takes out O’Reilly. Burch tags but O’Reilly fights them both. He runs but into double low dropkicks. Strong comes in but Lorcan gets him with an uppercut! Burch runs in for a EuroUpper then lariat and kick! Burch hops up, flies with the missile dropkick, then kips up.

Strong staggers but reverses the throw to throw Burch out. O’Reilly kicks but Burch blocks, only for Strong to wreck him with the dropkick! Fans fire up as Strong puts Burch into the LED apron. Strong puts Burch in the ring, tags O’Reilly, then drags Burch up for them to kick and chop in the corner. O’Reilly brings Burch out to give a shoulder breaker, then the back suplex, into the heel hook! Burch works the counter, but Strong tags in to stomp Burch out. Strong rains down rights, then mocks the one-two fingers. He stomps Burch more, then gives Burch the pendulum backbreaker. Cover, TWO, so Strong throws more hands. Strong brings Burch up, then whips him into the corner. Tag to O’Reilly, and they whip him even harder.

Strong goes side to side for the forearm, then O’Reilly adds the kick. O’Reilly brings Burch out again, but Burch denies the shoulder breaker to throw hands and chops. O’Reilly trips him up then drives in elbows and knees into those ribs. He throws hands back and forth then tries for the armbar. Burch holds on, reaches around, and gets the ropebreak. O’Reilly lets go, then toys with Burch. He brings Burch up and puts him in a corner. Strong tags in but Burch throws forearms back. Strong dropkicks Burch! Cover, TWO, so Strong wraps Burch up in a seated abdominal stretch. Burch bleeds just a bit from the top of his head but he keeps fighting. He stands and fights, but Strong rocks him with elbows. Strong runs into the corner, but misses! Back drop from Burch, and both men are down.

Hot tag to O’Reill, and O’Reilly kicks Lorcan down. O’Reilly ax but Burch the headbutt! Both men are down again, and crawl for their corners. Hot tags to Strong and Lorcan! Lorcan rallies on Strong with those haymakers and chops. Lorcan runs, for the big lariat! He keeps going, for a EuroUpper! Strong gets uot but O’Reilly comes in, to get chop after chop. Lorcan hits Strong, then dropkicks O’Reilly, and then FLIES! He takes them BOTH down, and fans fire up for him.

Lorcan puts Strong in the ring, dodges, Half ‘n’ Half to Euro Upper! High stack cover, TWO! O’Reilly returns but Lorcan just chops away on him and Strong. Lorcan is on fire as he hits back elbow after back elbow in the corners. One to O’Reilly, one to Strong, back to O’Reilly, but Strong catches him. Lorcan slips out to shove Strong into O’Reilly, then hits the DOUBLE Blockbuster! Tag to Burch, and they drag Strong up. Hanging DDT! Cover, O’Reilly breaks! Lorcan throws him out, then goes up while Burch lifts Strong onto his shoulders. O’Reilly returns to disrupt that, Lorcan hits the apron! Burch has Strong alone, but Strong turns him around. Boot, enziguri, and tag to O’Reilly to kick and club away.

O’Reilly knees, sweeps but Burch headbutts and knees. Burch runs, but into a knee. O’Reilly suplexes, cover, TWO, into the armbar! Burch resists, holding on to his hands tight. O’Reilly fights Burch’s grip, and it comes down to the last finger. Armbar is on! Burch flails, reaches, sits up, and gets the ropebreak! O’Reilly lets go but he goes to tag in Strong. O’Reilly goes back to Burch and brings him up. He whips him to a corner and Strong hits the shining wizard. Bakc suplex slam to shining wizard! Cover, TWO!

The Undisputed Era is furious, but they have something more. Strong tags O’Reilly, and Strong brings Burhc up. He runs, but Burhc headbutts! Burch dumps O’Reilly out onto Strong, then tags Lorcan. Lorcan on the apron, another double blockbuster! Lorcan puts O’Reilly in the ring, Burch grabs him and puts him on his shoulders. EuroUpper for the Showtime! Cover, but Cole drags O’Reilly out! The referee saw that, and EJECTS Cole!

Cole argues and fumes the entire way while Burch and Lorcan get O’Reilly back in. They bring O’Reilly up but those bad arms. Lorcan takes O’Reilly, lifts, but Strong trips Burch! Strong puts Burch into the announce desk while O’Reilly gets teh guillotine!! Lorcan endures but O’Reilly is wrapped on him. Lorcan gets out with a Northern Lights! Fans are loving this as Lorcan and O’Reilly get up. O’Reilly boots Lorcan, Strong tags in, but runs into EuroUpper after EuroUpper. Lorcan runs, but Strong knees. Lorcan slips out of the suplex to chop block! He lifts Strong, POWERBOMB! High stack, TWO, into Half Crab!

Strong crawls, but Lorcan drags him awya. O’Reilly kicks but it doesn’t do anything to Lorcan! So O’Reilly puts Lorcan in the guillotine, but Burch comes in to grab O’Reilly in a crossface! Side-by-side submissions, the champions flail and reach, but O’Reilly rolls aruond to kick Lorcan off the hold! All four men are down but the fans are at a fever pitch. The teams regroup and stand up. And a brawl erupts! O’Reilly takes out Burch, but Lorcan takes him to SLAP SLAP SLAP! Strong knee smashes! Ax and SMASH, to the high-low combo! Cover, Undisputed Era wins!

Winners: The Undisputed Era, Strong pinning; still NXT Tag Team Champions

What an opener! Both teams brawled with all they had, but in the end, the minor influence of Adam Cole tips the scales. The Undisputed Era get this one, will they continue their takeover of NXT?

 

Ricochet VS Velveteen Dream!

This #OneAndOnlyDream match has been the Patrick Clark Experience claiming anything Ricochet can do, he can do better. But Ricochet also turned that back on Dream with “Prove it”, before doing a front flip out of the ring and to the floor, seamlessly! Can Dream keep his word while keeping the spotlight all to himself? Or will the King of Flight trump this Prince of Charisma? Speaking of Princes, Dream’s attire seems rather familiar for Ricochet…

Dream takes his time joining Ricochet in the ring. The fans duel as the bell rings. Ricochet and Dream get face to face, questioning the other’s attire. The two back off and circle, feeling it out. They tie up, Ricochet powers Dream to a corner but Dream turns it around. Dream backs off to pose and flex, brother. He and Ricochet circle again, then tie up. Ricochet gets behind but Dream gets a takedown, only for Ricochet to put on a headscissors. Dream works against the hold, then pops out, to throw his bandanna before going for the headlock again. Ricochet puts the headscissors back on, and still holds on.

Dream endures the squeeze and wrench, then rolls around to slip out the back. Dream grabs the headlock again, but Ricochet pries his way out into an armlock. Ricochet grinds Dream into a corner, TWO. Dream gets up but Ricochet gets the headlock. Fans duel while Ricochet holds on as Dream tries to power out. Dream rolls Ricochet to a cover, ONE, and they stand up again. Dream grabs Ricochet and gets the headlock. Ricochet fights back, powers out, but Dream runs him over with a shoulder. Dream soaks up the cheers and jeers, then speeds things up. Ricochet lifts but Dream tilt-o-whirl headscissors, but Ricochet handsprings to land on his feet!

Dream poses, thinking he threw the King off, but Ricochet runs back in to roll off the back. Ricochet rolls, handsprings, and superhero lands! Fans are all fired up after that. Ricochet and Dream stand up as they stare down. Dream slaps, Ricochet slaps and rolls him up. ONE, and Ricochet gets the waistlock. Dream fights out but Ricochet rolls and handsprings to then headscissor, kip up and dropkick Dream down! Dream flounders to a corner, but Ricochet runs in corner to corner. He ends up on the apron but he hits Dream away. Ricochet then springboards, but Dream trips him up! Ricochet hits the apron then the ground while Dream catches his breath. Dream then comes out to fetch Ricochet, putting him in the ring. Dream puts Ricochet in a corner and throws hands and stomps.

The referee backs him off, but Dream just rushes back at Ricochet with more hands and stomps. Dream backs off and tells the referee not to touch him. Ricochet staggers up, but Dream clubs him back down. Dream drags Ricochet back up, to hotshot him on the top rope. Ricochet drops, so Dream goes to the apron, for the knee-board senton, a la Ricochet himself! Dream stalks Ricochet on the mat, then brings him up for the hip-swiveling neckbreaker. Cover, TWO, but Dream keeps his cool. Dream dares Ricochet to get up, but then drops the ax handle. Fans rally, and Ricochet hits back. Dream clubs him more, but Ricochet throws and elbows Dream at the ropes. Ricochet runs, but Dream pushes him out of the ring! Dream builds speed, and FLIES!

Dream hits Ricochet with the springboard tope conjilo! He then puts Ricochet in the ring, covers, TWO. Dream drags Ricochet up and puts on a chinlock. Ricochet endures the thrashing and grinding while fans rally up for him. Ricochet stands, but Dream wrangles him back down. Dream puts his weight on Ricochet, but Ricochet feeds off the fan energy. Ricochet stands while fans duel, but Dream rocks him with that forearm. Dream shoves but Ricochet kicks him away. Ricochet back elbows, then boots from a corner. Dream blocks but Ricochet slips out. Ricochet throws Dream out but Dream drags him out. Fans love “Both These Guys!” as Dream grabs a foot. Dream ducks the enziguri, but Ricochet flips to throw him. Dream runs into a corner but into boots, Ricochet rolls to dropkick him out! Ricochet then takes aim, builds speed, and… DIVES!

Tope suicida hits, but Ricochet keeps going. Ricochet FLIES! The backflip attack hits, but Ricochet puts Dream in the corner. Ricochet runs corner to corner to EuroUpper and haymaker Dream. He bumps and 619’s Dream out of the corner, then climbs up to springboard back elbow! Cover, TWO! Dream flounders but Ricochet keeps focus. Ricochet gets up, then Dream, and Ricochet whips Dream to ropes. Dream kicks him away, then runs, but Ricochet follows for the neckbreaker and shooting star! Cover, TWO!

Both men are down but fans rally up. Ricochet stands first, lifts Dream in the fireman’s, but Dream falls off. Dream asks for mercy, but he throws Ricochet out. Ricochet speeds up to the top rope, but Dream trips him up again. Dream rocks Ricochet with a right, then climbs up to join him. Dream wants but Ricochet denies, and they brawl up there. Down goes Dream, but Ricochet adjusts. Ricochet aims, for the fake out! He rocks Dream back, then sits him down. Ricochet climbs up again, but Dream counters! SUPER ROLLING DEATH VALLEY!

Dream crawls to a cover, high stack at that, TWO!! The fans say “This is Awesome!” as both men slowly stir. Dream crawls his way back to the corner, and drags himself back up top. Ricochet sees him, then ducks the counter, to rock Dream with an uppercut. Ricochet drags Dream back up, but it’s Velveteen with the SUPERPLEX to the FLOOR! Fans lose their minds, and the referee checks on them. Both men are okay to continue, so the 10 count begins. It reaches 5 but both men are barely up. Dream gets in at 9, Ricochet at 9.5! The match continues and the fans applaud. Dream and Ricochet crawl towards each other, and then slowly get up together. Ricochet swings but ends up in a second Rolling Death Valley! Cover, TWO!!

Dream can’t believe it, but he’s too sore to show frustration. He and Ricochet are slow to getting up, but Ricochet needs the ropes to help. Ricochet and Dream stagger over, and throw wild haymakers and uppercuts. Ricochet first, then Dream, and back again. Dream clubs away, but Ricochet uppercuts. Dream kicks, but so does Ricochet. Fans rally up as Dream EuroUppers, then another. Ricochet answers with his own, but ends up in position. Dream goes for the sidewinder but Ricochet counters into a Northern Lights, roll through to the deadlift. Ricochet’s back won’t let him, so he settles for strikes. SUPERKICK from Dream, but bicycle kick from Ricochet.

Ricochet runs but into a back elbow. Dream hops up but misses. Ricochet rocks Dream with the discus! Ricochet keeps going, fireman’s but Dream slips out, SIDEWINDER! Cover, TWO!! But fans are giving a standing ovation! Dream and Ricochet stir, and Dream slaps Ricochet as he says “You belong in a bingo hall!” Fans again say “This is Awesome!” but Dream says HE is the awesome one. Ricochet lifts Dream, and steals the Rolling Death Valley! Ricochet hurries over to a corner, up to the top rope, and poses! Purple Rainmaker! Cover, TWO!! Dream will not die, certainly not to his own move.

So Ricochet will go for his move, as he drags Dream over. Ricochet climbs up again, with Dream in the drop zone. Dream slowly rolls away, so Ricochet just goes with… a shooting star! But into knees! Dream covers, TWO!! And Dream is shocked! Dream gets himself up top, he wants to end this. Dream goes Coast2Coast, but misses the elbow as Ricochet rolls! Ricochet climbs back up while Dream writhes. Fans are at a fever pitch, as Ricochet hits the 630!! Cover, Ricochet wins!!

Winner: Ricochet, by pinfall

The One and Only Winner is the King of Flight! The spotlight was stolen by both men, but it shines brightest on Ricochet. With such a spectacular performance, will this springboard Ricochet all the way to the top?

 

NXT Women’s Championship: Shayna Baszler VS Nikki Cross!

The Queen of Spades loves breaking her opponents’ arms, legs and even spirits. However, you can’t break what’s already broken, and the Loony Lass lost her marbles long before meeting Shayna. When fear doesn’t work, will pain be the only thing that cuts through the chaos?

The bell rings, and the two stare down. Shayna tries to intimidate with her stance, but Nikki just stares at her. It unsettles Shayna just a bit, but then Nikki ups the ante by again daring Shayna to “do it!” Shayna doesn’t put her sleeper on, but she does shove and trip Nikki. Nikki just kicks and laughs like an excited child. Nikki continues to dare Shayna to “do it”, then she scurries over and spooks Shayna. Shayna is at the ropes, so Nikki backs off. Shayna can’t comprehend why Nikki is leaving herself wide open. She steps closer, but Nikki spins around to laugh. Shayna lunges in out of frustration, but Nikki gets around and hops on! Nikki puts Shayna in a sleeper!

Nikki thrashes and growls as she brings Shayna to a knee. Shayna gets back up and throws Nikki off, then drags Nikki up. Nikki powers Shayna buckles, then stomps away. Shayna silps out, but Nikki chases her. Nikki ducks the apron kick to trip Shayna, then tucks her in to wail away! Fans cheer for the Crazy Cross but Shayna retreats. She doesn’t get far before Nikki hops on again! Shayna drops Nikki backwards on the ramp! The referee checks on the challenger, but she’s somehow okay. Shayna gets up and goes back to Nikki. She drags Nikki up and into the ring. She sits Nikki up for a stiff knee shot! Cover, TWO, and Shayna grows frustrated.

Shayna grounds and pounds, then brings Nikki up and around to smother her! The referee backs her off, but then she grinds a forearm into Nikki’s face. Shayna smothers Nikki again, but Nikki just smiles through it all. Shayna drags Nikki up for a facelock, then a chinbar. Nikki endures, and fans rally up. Nikki fights out with body shots and big forearms, but Shayna knocks her back with another knee! Shayna sits Nikki up, for a third! Yet Nikki grins! Nikki wants more, so Shayna gives her a fourth. Nikki sits up again, still grinning. She slaps herself, then blocks the fifth knee. Nikki forearms Shayna, then again, but Shayna ducks to go for the Kirafuda. Nikki back suplexes Shayna!

Fans fire up while Shayna rolls to ropes. Nikki gets herself up, and then Thezs Press and frantic hands on Shayna. Nikki rallies with lariats and forearms, then stomps a manic mudhole into Shayna. She won’t let up, even as the referee counts. Nikki stops herself at 4, but she’s still going. She climbs up, aims, and leaps for the crossbody!

Cover, TWO, and Shayna rolls to the apron. Nikki still slaps herself as she follows. She drags Shayna up, for an inverted DDT to the apron! She rolls Shayna over, covers, TWO! Nikki is a bit surprised, but not upset. She just drags Shayna up, swings, but Shayna slips out to hit another knee. Cover, TWO! Nikki rolls away but Shayna stalks her. Shayna grabs Nikki, sleeper hold, but Nikki rams her into buckles! Nikki hoists Shayna up, hanging swinging neckbreaker! Cover, Ropebreak!

Shayna survives thanks to ring awareness. But Nikki just revs up again as she drags Shayna by her hair. Nikki crucifix but Shayna gets the Kirafuda!! Shayna has Nikki stuck in the middle of the ring, with the body scissors added. Nikki reaches, endures, rolls around but she can’t get free. Fans cheer for Nikki, but she’s still stuck in the center. Nikki just smiles as she fades away?! She’s out, Shayna wins!!

Winner: Shayna, by submission; still NXT Women’s Champion

The Queen of Spades may not have scared Nikki, but she still put her to sleep. Shayna’s Reign of Terror continues, what will it take to end it?

 

NXT Championship: Aleister Black VS Lars Sullivan!

The Leviathan earned his shot at the top after barreling through every opponent put in front of him, especially Ricochet and Velveteen Dream. The Embodiment of the End has yet to be pinned or submitted, will Lars that change tonight? Or will Aleister find a way to make this genetic anomaly #FadeToBlack?

The bell rings, and the Rocky Mountain Monster stares down with the Dutch Destroyer. They slowly circle, and Lars says that “one shot” won’t be enough. They get face to face, and Lars vows he’s gonna take Aleister out. Lars swings but Aleister hits first. Lars kicks low, lifts but Aleister gets out. Aleister swings his kick, but Lars blocks it, just like on NXT TV! Lars spins Aleister but Aleister roundhouses Lars out. Aleister pursues and forearms on the run. He throws furious hands, but Lars shoves him. Aleister runs back in but Lars alley-oops Aleister onto the apron. Lars swings but Aleister hops over to then hit Meteora! Lars goes down, then flounders his way back into the ring. Aleister pursues and throws hands, but Lars counters with his own clubbing arms.

Lars clubs Aleister into a corner, then runs, but into the jumping knee! Cover, ONE, but Aleister keeps Lars down with an armbar. Lars endures the bending, then powers his way back up. Lars pushes Aleister off, but Aleister boots back. But Lars stays up, and uses one hand to shove Aleister to a corner. Aleister evades, then runs back, but is put on the apron. Lars blocks the forearm and twists Aleister’s arm, before hauling him up onto his shoulder! Aleister slips off but Lars runs through the lariat to then run Aleister over. Aleister rolls out of the ring, but Lars pursues. Lars hauls Aleister up, then throws him, but Aleister reverses to put Lars into the post. Aleister gets back on the apron, and climbs up, for the SUPER Moonsault.

Lars catches it! To then snake eyes Aleister on the LED, and push him into barriers! Aleister is down, but Lars drags him back up and in. Lars stalks Aleister as he flounders. Lars runs in and squashes him in a corner. Cover, TWO, but Lars is only mildly annoyed. Lars stretches Aleister back, clawing the face then clubbing it with a crossface forearm. Lars roars “Who’s the man!?” Cover, TWO, but Lars just wraps Aleister in a heavy chinlock. Fans rally for Aleister while he endures the massive squeeze. Aleister turns red, but he refuses to quit. Lars puts his weight on him, but Aleister keeps moving. Aleister gets a second wind, and uses body shots.

Lars knees low, then whips Aleister. Pop-up, but Aleister slips out to try and roll him. Lars blocks with strength, then hauls Aleister up, for a powerslam! Cover, TWO! Lars grows a bit frustrated with Aleister, but he still mocks him. “This is your champion?” Lars dares Aleister to stand. Aleister does, and throws a forearm. It doesn’t do much, so Aleister throws another, and another, and another! Lars grabs Aleister’s hair, but Aleister ducks the clothesline. Aleister runs, but into the pop-up powerslam! Cover, TWO! It was close, but Aleister did get out.

Lars decides to shift plans, and goes up top. Aleister springs up to rock him with a boot! Aleister climbs up now, but Lars resists. Lars holds on even as Aleister elbows away on his neck. Lars staggers to the apron, but then trips up Aleister, and then club him off the top! Aleister is dazed while Lars climbs up. Lars basically falls into the diving headbutt, but Aleister gets a knee up!

It was double-edged given Lars’ weight, as Aleister clutches his leg. Fans fire up while both men slowly get up. Lars is first, and he drags Aleister up. They brawl, Aleister unleashes kicks and elbows. He can’t knock Lars down, but then he sweeps the legs, and sliding knee! Aleister kips up, Lars flounders around, and walks into Aleister’s strike fest. Quebrada! Cover, TWO, but Aleister doesn’t slow down. Aleister walks around Lars, and lifts him up with a foot. Lars grabs that foot, and flips Aleister, before using a chop block on the bad leg. Aleister still boots Lars, but then he kicks with the bad leg and it hurts him more than it does Lars. Lars takes Aleister down, for the Stretch Muffler lift! Lars tortures that leg and bends Aleister all sorts of ways.

Fans rally again as Aleister endures. Aleister gets out to a cover, TWO! Lars kicks low, grabs Aleister, but Aleister turns the slam into a DDT! Both men are down, but Lars gets himself to the apron. Aleister sits up, then walks over, but into a choke. Aleister back elbows but Lars clobbers! Lars drags Aleister onto the apron, but Aleister hits back with a stiff boot. Then another, and another, only to run into an apron powerslam!! Lars puts Aleister in the ring, then climbs up top. FALLING HEADBUTT! Cover, TWO!? Lars cannot comprehend this. He stands up again, and waits for Aleister. Aleister wobbles, but jumps over the chop block to double stomp! BLACK MASS!! Cover, TWO!? Was that only a grazing hit? Or is Lars really that tough?

Fans rally Aleister up, but Lars follows. Aleister tries but Lars blocks Black Mass again, to then wallop Aleister with a lariat. Then, FREAK- No, Aleister shoves out to hit Lars’ jaw with the knee. Then another BLACK MASS! Aleister got all of that one, but he won’t cover because Lars is still conscious. Larts bleeds from the mouth but he starts to sit up. So Aleister gives him a THIRD Black Mass! Cover, Aleister wins!!

Winner: Aleister Black, by pinfall; still NXT Champion

The Embodiment of the End had to do more to The Leviathan than to anyone he’s ever faced in NXT. Lars may not be human, but Aleister shows he himself is superhuman. If not even Lars can conquer Aleister, who can?

 

Chicago Street Fight: Johnny Gargano VS Tommaso Ciampa!

It was over one year ago that one of the greatest tag teams in NXT, DIY, lost more than just tag team titles. The Psycho Killer, in a moment of paranoia and anger, betrayed Johnny Wrestling to break up their team, end their friendship, and ruin Gargano’s life. This grudge has escalated ever since, and Gargano won the Unsanctioned Match in New Orleans. With another match that throws caution to the wind, who will walk out of the Windy City with a win?

Before he heads out, Gargano’s wife, Candice LeRae, who at first was completely against this rivalry going down this path, makes sure Gargano is prepared for this battle. She gives him the broken crutch he used back in New Orleans. Then she tells Gargano to “Kiss his ass!”

But the Psycho Killer is just as prepared, because he has his own crutch.

Both gladiators are prepared, and this match begins!

Ciampa rushes the ring and the start swinging! Gargano blocks, the crutches are tossed, and Gargano tackles Ciampa to throw hands. Ciampa gets away, but Gargano clotheslines him out. Gargano is on the apron and mule kicks Ciampa away. Gargano then leaps, cannonball to the floor! Fans fire up as he drags Ciampa up and puts him across the announce desk! Ciampa takes out Nigel! Gargano pays no mind to the casualties, as he stalks Ciampa to the timekeeper’s area. Ciampa gets into the stands but Gargano hits him more. They fight right up to a fan who has a sign for Gargano. Ciampa stomps and kicks Gargano, then takes that sign! Ciampa tries to rip the sign, but realizes the sign has a board in it. Gargano kicks Ciampa, takes that sign, and as the sign hoped, Gargano uses it to SMACK Ciampa!

The board, was a STOP SIGN! Which Gargano uses to SMACK Ciampa more. Smack and smack and smack, Gargano shows no mercy. He doesn’t have to, it’s a Street Fight. Gargano high-fives the fans, then stalks Ciampa. Ciampa goes down, but Gargano goes up. Gargano takes aim, and LEAPS onto Ciampa! They crash and burn, but Gargano gets up first. Gargano stalks Ciampa while the fans lose their minds. Gargano rains downs rights while fans chant “Johnny Wrestling!” Things return to ringside, and Ciampa flounders back towards the ring. Gargano follows him over, but decides to get supplies from under the ring. First, a trash can, then its lid, and even a standard chair. Gargano has an arsenal to choose from, and he swings the lid.

Ciampa ducks, and German Suplexes Gargano! Ciampa puts Gargano’s face on the chair, but misses the stomp. Gargano throws haymakers while fans duel. Gargano clubs and clubs Ciampa, but Ciampa reverses into another German Suplex. Ciampa holds on, then drags Gargano up again, for another German! Ciampa still holds on, doing his own version of #SuplexCity. Gargano reaches for ropes, but gets thrown with another German Supelx. Ciampa grins as he keeps his grip, but Gargano reaches around again. Gargano standing switch, and he throws Ciampa with a German Suplex! Ciampa rolls out but Gargano runs to DIVE onto Ciampa! Direct hit and Ciampa rolls to the ramp.

Gargano brings him back over, then whips him into steel steps. Gargano goes back for supplies, but Ciampa hits Gargano with the braced knee! Ciampa drags Gargano up and throws him into barriers. Ciampa moves the steel steps over, because he’s planning something truly sinister. He kicks Gargano while he’s down, but ignores the fans booing and jeering. Ciampa checks under the ring, and finds a second garbage can. He also brings out another chair and another lid. Ciampa goes with the chair, and jabs it into Gargano’s ribs. Gargano crawls, but Ciampa puts that chair around Gargano’s neck. Ciampa throws haymaker after haymaker, then brings Gargano up, to throw him at the steel steps! Chair hits steps, and jams into Gargano’s throat!

Gargano flails in pain while gasping for air. Ciampa simply watches from the ring. Fans continue to duel while the referee checks on Gargano. Gargano refuses to quit, so Ciampa goes back out to SMACK Gargano with the trash can. Ciampa grins at his former friend, then positions him against the steps to hammer him ito the steel. Ciampa grabs the trash can and just chucks it at Gargano’s head! He then puts Gargano back in the ring, and pulls off his shirt to use it to choke and smother Gargano! Ciampa even drives in an elbow to top it off. Ciampa stomps Gargano, but fans still say “You Suck! Woop Woop!”

Gargano sits up but Ciampa brings him up to put him in a corner. Ciampa stomps away, then slingshot guillotines Gargano into the bottom buckle! Gargano writhes in pain again, but Ciampa is far from done. Ciampa goes under the ring in search of something. And he finds a pair of handcuffs!? Ciampa has another sinister idea. He goes over to Gargano, cuffs one wrist, but Gargano fights back. Gargano back elbows and the cuffs fall off. Gargano slingshot spears Ciampa down! But between the bad neck and the rage, Gargano doesn’t cover. Instead, Gargano takes off his belt to then whip Ciampa across the back. Fans tell Ciampa “You Deserve It!”

Gargano whips and slaps Ciampa over and over, then makes it a leather fist to punch Ciampa down. Gargano grabs a trash can and puts it on Ciampa, to then DIY SUPERKICK it! Ciampa is dazed but Gargano isn’t done with that trash can. Gargano wedges the can into a corner, then drags Ciampa up. He scoops Ciampa, but Ciampa slips out and rakes the eyes! Ciampa lifts Gargano, Project Ciampa bomb! Then with the trash can lid added, he gives Gargano shotgun knees! Cover, TWO!! Ciampa is furious, but he just wants Gargano to get up again. Another trash can lid knee sends Gargano out to the apron!

Ciampa follows Gargano out there, and returns to those steel steps. Ciampa lifts Gargano but Gargano resists. Gargano elbows Ciampa’s neck and head again and again and again, but Ciampa still lifts him! AIR RAID ON THE STEPS!! Ciampa puts Gargano in the ring, covers, TWO!? Gargano has proven he has an insane amount of guts, but this is even crazier than that. Ciampa decides to bring out something more, and finds a pair of clippers? He clips the strings on the ring cover? What is he planning now? Ciampa unties more string, and pulls away the canvas, then the padding, to reveal the wood! He SMACKS Gargano with a chair for good measure, then waves good-bye.

Ciampa finishes exposing a corner of the ring, then drags Gargano over. He hoists Gargano up, and fans are starting to grow concerned for both men. Ciampa bits Gargano’s ear, then climbs up top. Ciampa prepares the lift, but Gargano flails! Gargano sunsets through, and Ciampa holds on for dear life. Ciampa punches, misses, Gargano tucks him in for a SUPERKICK! Gargano crawls, skipping the crutches to instead brawl with Ciampa. They go back and forth, fans strongly on Gargano’s side. Both men stand, and the brawl continues. Both men stagger, but neither backs down. Gargano gets the edge, then spins, but into a boot! Ciampa spins, but into an enziguri!

Gargano grabs a lid but Ciampa hits a knee strike. Ciampa grabs a crutch but Gargano hits a SUPERKICK! They both swing, they both connect! Ciampa falls, Gargano falls on him for a cover, TWO!! Fans declare “This is Awesome!” while Ciampa crawls his way out to the steel steps. Gargano aims, slingshots, but Ciampa SMACKS him with the trash can lid! Ciampa staggers away while the referee checks on Gargano. Gargano is okay to continue, so Ciampa runs in, but the knee goes into steps as Gargano evades! Ciampa clutches his bad leg, and undoes the brace. Then he tightens it, remembering New Orleans.

But too late, Gargano is upon Ciampa and punches away at the knee! Gargano takes a chair and SMACKS the leg!! And jabs it, and jabs it, and jabs it and jabs it and jabs it! Fans fire up with Gargano as he drags Ciampa’s back leg around. Ciampa shoves Gargano into the corner can! Then puts Gargano in the GargaNO Escape! Fans boo as Ciampa steals Gargano’s hold.

But Gargano reaches around, and gets a crutch! Ciampa bails out when he sees that, and shifts to a STF, wanting to use the broken crutch the way Gargano used the brace at New Orleans. Ciampa clobbers away on Gargano to get him to stop resisting. Gargano is limp, and Ciampa finishes strapping his brace. Fans duel as Gargano props himself up on the crutch. Ciampa knees him down! Ciampa takes the broken crutch, takes aim with it, and RAMS it into Gargano’s neck from behind! Cover, TWO!??! Ciampa is furious, he doesn’t get how Gargano survives. He throws Gargano out and Gargano slumps to the ground.

Fans chant “We Want Tables!” Ciampa watches Gargano crawl, but he won’t let Gargano get away. He drags Gargano up, and walks his old friend up the ramp. “We were like brothers!” They were family! Ciampa says Gargano did this to himself. Ciampa recreates their moment last year, saying Gargano has to say “bye bye” to Candice, his family, and his career! Then Ciampa throws Gargano into the LED stage wall, a la TakeOver: Chicago 1! Gargano is dazed and rolling, but Ciampa adds another braced knee strike! But Ciampa says “It’s not enough!” This rage, this anger, this hate, it’s far deeper than anyone could have imagined.

And just as fans wanted, Ciampa spots tables, and brings Gargano over. Ciampa drags Gargano up with him on top of the stack of trunks. Ciampa stands up, and takes Gargano’s wedding ring from him! To spit on it, and throw it away! Ciampa drags Gargano up, but Gargano lifts Ciampa, for a SUPER AIR RAID THROUGH THE TABLES!!! It is utter carnage in Chicago, and Chicago loses its mind! The referee says this is enough, and he calls for medical attention. The medics respond, and check on both men amid the wreckage. Gargano somehow gets back up onto the trunks, and looks down at his fallen foe.

Ciampa needs a neck brace now, like a flip-side to Ciampa’s brutal attack on Gargano a month ago, as well as last year. Medics carefully put Ciampa on a back board, but fans want Gargano to “Do it! Do it!” Ciampa is put on a stretcher, still groaning and screaming with pain. Gargano sees his ring is missing, and fans want him to “Jump! Jump!” Ciampa is being wheeled out, but Gargano won’t let him get off that easy. Gargano rushes over, Chicago cheering him on, and he shoves the medics out of the way! Ciampa begs for mercy as Gargano wheels him back to ringside. Gargano takes off the straps, beats on Ciampa, then puts him into the ring.

Gargano’s rage takes over as he undoes the neck brace, and puts Ciampa in GargaNO Escape! Ciampa taps, but there’s no ref to count it. The security pull Gargano off, Gargano fights THEM off! Garagno grabs the handcuffs! He binds Ciampa’s arms behind his back, then sits him up for a SUPERKICK! Then another! And another! And another! More and more and more, then the GargaNO Escape. Ciampa manages to tap, but the referee is nowhere in sight. Gargano shouts “This ends when YOU do!”

More security come out to pull Gargano away from Ciampa, but Gargano is not satisfied. He breaks through, then fights the security off again. Gargano runs around the outside, and they end up near the bare wood. Ciampa gets Gargano with a draping DDT on the wood!! Cover, Ciampa wins!!

Winner: Ciampa, by pinfall

This match was over five times before, but only now does it end. Ciampa endured torture, but it’s everyone else that feels the agony of defeat. However, given how much it took out of both men, will this prove to be a double-edge victory?

Candice LeRae comes out to check on her husband, but as always, Ciampa waves good-bye. The series may be tied, but is this the end of the war between Ciampa and Gargano?

 


 

My Thoughts:

NXT is truly the best of the best of what WWE does. The kickoff was fun with EC3 and Adam Cole being great in character for their appearances. Great to see Keith Lee in attendance, that means he’s ready to debut at any moment. The matches started hot and just kept going to perfectly climax at the very end. Lorcan & Burch may not have won, but it was an amazing feat for them to turn the crowd into their favor before the end. They also get a great ovation even after the match for the effort they put in. I don’t know about Raw or SmackDown, but those two would be amazing additions to the 205 Live roster as a tag team to really energize that budding tag division.

Ricochet VS Dream was even better, which seemed impossible at the start but was undeniable by the end. Dream is cheeky coming out in a fusion of Hulk Hogan and Prince Puma, aka Ricochet’s persona from Lucha Underground. Ricochet goes over, because it just makes sense. As I expected, Shayna goes over, but it was genius to have Nikki lose because she passes out, not because she taps out. Shayna won the match but Nikki won the mind games, expect Nikki & SAnitY to finally be on SmackDown. Aleister VS Lars, that was also incredible, like NXT’s version of Batman VS Bane or something. Aleister wins this on sheer grit and determination, but also because I expect EC3 to be gunning for him next.

That Chicago Street Fight, was probably the best Street Fight of all Street Fights, WWE or anywhere. It made sure to reference all the story going into this, had a nice surprise in that stop sign inside the sign, scared me for Nigel’s sake, and then for both Gargano’s and Ciampa’s sake. This has gone from personal grudge to archenemy territory and beyond. Ciampa continues to be best heel as he wins more by luck than anything. The fans just hated him, aside from the contrarians. But since their overall series is 1-1, this has to continue one more time in NXT, or even bleed onto the main roster, this rivalry is that great.

My Score: 9.5/10


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(NOAH) WEEKLY NEWSLETTER VOL.2 ~ 21ST SEPTEMBER 2018

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CURRENT TOUR RECAP

NOAH finished up their mammoth five day in a row event (14th September to the 18th September), fortunately no-one was injured, but both Hajime Ohara (neck) and Hi69 (knee) seem to be carrying injuries.

After losing the GHC Heavyweight Tag Title challenge against Naomichi Marufuji and Akitoshi Saito, Kaito Kiyomiya intimated that he would be interested in challenging for them again, but with another partner (i.e. Go Shiozaki). Shiozaki was seen watching Kaito Kiyomiya in the tag match against 50 Funky Powers in Hakata Stalene. Later in the tour he mentioned on Twitter about “shutting them up” and their GHC Heavyweight Tag Challenge

.Speaking of Go Shiozaki there was a very sweet moment that took place in Hakata, involving both himself and Atsushi Kotoge. When they made their entrance in their match against The Hooligans (Cody Hall and Maybach Taniguchi), a little boy could be seen dressed in a homemade “Revolutionary Cloak”. When Kotoge appeared the little boy and the little girl next to him (most probably his sister), did the revolutionary fist pumps (to the delight of Kotoge who joined in), and when he had gone, Shiozaki noticed, did it for half a second, and then went bright red (Shiozaki gets very shy when he has to do physical comedy, he also has a tendency to start giggling as well when others do it).
During the match, the brawl went into the crowd, and a little girl was upset by it and started crying. Go Shiozaki, gave her a hug to comfort her, and once back in the ring got The Hooligans in the corner, pointed to her and said “this is for you”, and proceeded to chop them.

Despite his claim to “bring the revolution to Hakata, and defeat the villains!”, Atsushi Kotoge took the Zwei Bomb from Taniguchi.

Naomichi Marufuji is still not accepting the challenge of The Hooligans, and gave a somewhat bad tempered promo in Ehime saying they were “a fool, a baldie” and “even though I am an asshole with a lack of sleep, I am going to crush you all. Come and line up with your heads bowed. I am not going to accept your challenge! I’m not in the mood!” Marufuji is still being obsessively hated by Kenoh, and he certainly has taken it from him on this tour, but the person the five days really belongs to, is Katsuhiko Nakajima, who utterly obliterated Takashi Sugiura and did the cocky pin on him. I don’t think anyone has ever at any time or anywhere ever done this…

Nakajima, being Nakajima, wasn’t finished there as he draped the belt over him, and then threw Sugiura out of the ring. When Sugiura had recovered and scraped himself off of the floor, Nakajima had gotten the microphone, and standing on the turnbuckle he told him that he would continue to plague him like he did today, he would plague him again tomorrow and the day after that and forever afterwards.

At the end of the five day tour, having been thoroughly battered by Nakajima, Takashi Sugiura said tiredly he couldn’t keep up and says that he has had no choice but to get better, and rethink his strategy. I can only imagine that Sugiura is playing the spider and the fly…

“Black or white, this is a league.” (Hi69) 

The NOAH Juniors, despite being divided over Junior Global League, are all gunning for Kotaro Suzuki (Hitoshi Kumano says that he is going to “crush the beat so no sound comes out”). Kotaro Suzuki has dismissed even the freelancers amongst the NOAH Juniors as being “weak”.

The biggest build so far is Daisuke Harada vs Kotaro Suzuki, which will take place in Yokohama (Suzuki has already lost to the other “elder” of the Juniors, Hajime Ohara). Daisuke Harada in Kochi, delivered the message to Suzuki that he would beat him down, and then he would “tell you this”…Harada spoke silently to the camera and walked off. Kotaro Suzuki later said that he had no idea what he was saying, but would find out before they faced each other.

Suzuki has made unflattering comments about various NOAH juniors, Hitsohi Kumano is “heavy” and “bulging with fat”, and Tadasuke, due to “too much hair treatment” is “greasy”.

Kotaro Suzuki, known for being just as “slippery” as Tadasuke (maybe even more) has promised something special for his “vision of Korakuen” (he also posted a picture of himself and Yoshinari Ogawa out drinking and said they were “discussing strategy”), well, whatever he has planned, it is probably a lot better than what Tadasuke has promised, he says that he may have to “poison the rice of the winning candidates” if he doesn’t win.

Suzuki and Harada clashed in a tag match on the 18th September on the last day of tour with Harada getting in his face with the belt, and Suzuki playing the innocent after attacking him while standing on the ring apron.

There has been no rift between The Backbreakers, with Hitoshi Kumano defeating Hajime Ohara. Kumano said he had to win, even though Ohara’s neck was very bad.
Part of his reasons for wanting to beat Ohara was due to the comments made by Daisuke Harada when he was aiming for the GHC Junior Heavyweight championship a few months ago, Harada had basically said that Kumano was “below Ohara” or that he was his “subordinate”.

Between RATELS, Daisuke Harada is too busy to comment on Tadasuke beating him, and YO-HEY and HAYATA still appear to be friends (better description might be master and pet).

Junta Miyawaki is still to get his first win, but the boy has earned a lot of accolades with people praising him and saying he was “insanely good” in his matches. NOAH are really teasing his first win with many near pinfalls.  He has also been likened to a young Kenta Kobashi, which means that now in NOAH we have almost the Four Pillars for a new generation with Misawa (Kiyomiya) and Kawada (Kenoh) – now we just need a Taue.

NOAH have had very good attendances out in the provinces for this tour, not all venues have been sold out, but attendances have been very high. The promotion has a policy whereby they travel outside of the metropolitan areas (i.e. Tokyo, Osaka) and the big city areas and bring the show to the “provinces” (i.e. the countryside or the more rural areas on the edge of the suburbs). While this doesn’t always result in a full house (something a lot of people don’t seem to understand and they think its a reflection on NOAH ), what it does do is bring a company who unlike New Japan, All Japan, Big Japan etc doesn’t have a streaming service and\or a TV show, to people who wouldn’t see them otherwise. They have also attracted a lot of new fans too.

Global Junior League Scores (as of 18th September 2018)
YO-HEY: 7
Ikuto Hidaka: 6
Daisuke Harada: 6
Kotaro Suzuki: 6
Hitoshi Kumano: 4
Tadasuke: 4
Hi69: 4
Minoru Tanaka: 4
HAYATA: 3
Hajime Ohara: 2
Seiya Morohashi: 2
Junta Miyawaki: 0

NOAH are back on the 29th September at Radiant Hall, Yokohama, bell sounds at 17.30

NEWS

QUIET STORM CELEBRATES 20 YEARS
Quiet Storm has celebrated his own twenty years in wrestling on the 16th September, he debuted in 1998 (about a month after Naomichi Marufuji did) at roughly the age of seventeen, and while in America had spells with Ring of Honor, PWF and NYWC. Quiet Storm made his debut in his hometown of New York (he’s a Brooklyn boy I think). He came to Japan and trained with KAIENTAI DOJO, but had to return home due to a family situation. Aside from NOAH, his other affiliation is with Osaka Pro. He has been with NOAH since 2014.

His tag team partner, Mohammed Yone, presented him with flowers in the ring.

GHC BELT NEWS

Current champions

  • GHC Heavyweight Champion: Takashi Sugiura
  • GHC Junior Champion: Daisuke Harada
  • GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: Naomichi Marufuji & Akitoshi Saito
  • GHC Junior Tag Champions: Minoru Tanaka & Hi69

OTHER NEWS

Atsushi Kotoge will be holding his own fan event, further details to be announced (this is not a produce)

Comedy wrestler Kikutaro (who returned to Japan to have ear surgery), announced that before he leaves for America, he wants to appear in NOAH(he was once a regular in SEM, where he memorably teamed with KENTA, who had him thrown out of the building afterwards, Kikutaro made his way back in though), and a match has been arranged against Atsushi Kotoge for the 4th October at Korakuen Hall. Kotoge has asked Kikutaro whether he wants to join the “Revolutionary Army”. What should be a very funny match, will be broadcast on Samurai on the 11th October (FYI: Fuji TV no longer exists, it is now “ForJoyTV“)

Naomichi Marufuji and Doug Williams will be having what will be their last match ever in IPW on Sunday the 23rd September. Their history was made not in NOAH or even in Japan, but in Europe. You can read about their history in an article I have written, “Farewell Europe

Hajime Ohara, (who quite rightly is called “NOAH’s treasure”), has taken part in more municipal activities in Kawasawki by lecturing the Staff Hygiene Committee about exercise that can be done at the office and at home.

Thanks to Metal-Noah who very kindly sent me a copy of “Heir to The Ark”, Naomichi Marufuji’s biography, English translation has started, and can be found here. This is a work in progress, and I hope to update it daily. The book is ranked #3 on the Japanese book charts. TOUR TIDBITS

  • Tadasuke used a chair on Seiya Morohashi (which is unusual for him).
  • Whilst in Shikoku, a big crab turned up on Hi69’s cigarette packet (its probably HAYATA shape-shifting)
  • The ceiling was so low in Hakata Stalene that people’s feet and heads grazed it.
  • Naomichi Marufuji watched “the youngsters” going off together after NOAH arrived in Kochi, and said “the old man is going to bed”
  • Tadasuke announced to Kotaro Suzuki “Hey, Fool! I am today’s NOAH Junior!” (and Kotaro Suzuki beat him down in ten minutes with the Tiger Driver)
  • Naomichi Marufuji wrapped Yoshiki Inamura in Atsushi Kotoge’s cloak, and forced him to do the “Revolution Pose”, right in front of Kotoge.
  • YO-HEY’S rambling promos include him having all his teeth knocked out (he hasn’t), and likening himself to a 16th century Japanese warlord, a champion stallion racehorse which was put out to stud (don’t ask) and then forgetting what he was talking about. He is still convinced that he will be facing Yoshiki Inamura in the finals of Global Junior League, despite the fact that Inamura isn’t in Global Junior League.
  • Yoshinari Ogawa took Atsushi Kotoge’s cape and used it to wipe his boots, much to Kotoge’s horror.
  • Ehime Pro did an opening exhibition at Noah’s show at TEXPORT Imbari
  • Yoshiki Inamura getting good reviews.
  • Go Shiozaki went to shake hands with Kotoge, but Kotoge drew his hand back, wiped his head and walked off (Shiozaki, notorious for giggling, couldn’t keep a straight face)
  • NOAH have had a crack down on people filming at the event, Atsushi Kotoge said “Heroes obey the rules”.
  • Masao Inoue is holding another bowling event, wrestlers participating will be Atsushi Kotoge, Kaito Kiyomiya and Tadasuke
  • On September 17th, Atsushi Kotoge, Kenoh, Katsuhiko Nakajima and Masa Kitamiya went to a sports bar and spent until the early hours watching classic Four Pillars era All Japan (the match Kotoge photographed on the TV was Mitsuharu Misawa vs Kenta Kobashi on the 21st October 1997. When this match took place, Kotoge and Kenoh would have been 12, Kitamiya 14 and Nakajima 9).
  • Cody Hall and Maybach Taniguchi now have a finisher called “The Hooligans Bomb”.

  • On the long drive back from Tottori to Tokyo, (about nine to eleven hours), Takashi Sugiura photographed Masao Inoue at the urinal (twice), and then predictably, things got even worse when Marufuji filmed Inoue eating an ice cream on the bus, and then pausing to look briefly at a passing woman. Between Marufuji and Sugiura, this turned into Inoue thinking about “licking” women…

Lets just end this newsletter here until next week.


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Mitchell’s NJPW AXS TV Results: G1 Climax 28, part 11!

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NJPW G1 Climax 28 cover

NJPW and AXS bring us the B Block finals! Will it be Tetsuya Naito of one of the Golden Lovers who qualifies for THE G1 Climax 28 Finals?!

 

This coverage of the G1 Climax 28 will be as broadcast by AXS TV.

Gifs can be found on http://frentique.tumblr.com/

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Tetsuya Naito VS Zack Sabre Jr; ZSJ wins.
  • Kenny Omega VS Kota Ibushi; Ibushi wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

NJPW and AXS set the scene for this final night of B Block action!

It all comes down to this! The Best Bout Machine lost to Tomohiro Ishii and Toru Yano in a row, though one was in part thanks to Tama Tonga. However, the IWGP Heavyweight Champion is still one win away from being in his third consecutive G1 Climax Finals. That win must come at the expense of Kenny Omega’s best friend, Kota Ibushi, in this Golden Lovers dream match. Ibsuhi could take the entire block with his own win, but there’s also last year’s G1 Climax champion. Tetsuya Naito can make his own repeat appearance if he defeats Zack Sabre Jr, who would love to play spoiler with his submission style. Who will meet Hiroshi Tanahashi in the G1 Climax 28 Finals?!

 

Tetsuya Naito VS Zack Sabre Jr!

The charismatic leader of Los Ingobernables de Japon takes on Suzuki-Gun’s Submission Master, a familiar match up from this year’s New Japan Cup. Naito takes his time with his attire, as usual, but ZSJ is patient. The referee finishes his check of both men, rings the bell, and we begin.

ZSJ rushes Naito then throws him out. He pursues but Naito slips back out to then troll ZSJ with a game of cat ‘n’ mouse. ZSJ grows frustrated and starts kicking railing like his mentor, Minoru Suzuki. Taka Michinoku calms Zack down and gets him back to the ring. Naito tells ZSJ to return, saying time is of the essence. ZSJ returns but Naito speeds things up. They both run and dodge, then Naito Tranquilos! But ZSJ grabs the arm for the armbar! Naito gets the ropes for the ropebreak and ZSJ mocks Tranquilo before letting Naito go. Naito takes his time returning, to again troll ZSJ. Red Shoes counts but Naito waits to return at about 10. ZSJ rushes Naito again for a headlock. Naito powers out and arm-drags ZSJ around. ZSJ headbutts then European Uppercuts, but he runs into another arm-dag.

Naito has ZSJ down, but ZSJ reverses into a headscissor. ZSJ squeezes, then stands to twist! Naito writhes while ZSJ catches his breath. ZSJ goes after the legs and gets a Queen Angelito figure four. He goes after the arms, and he uses a surfboard style lift! ZSJ goes for a cover but can’t get the angle, so he shifts to a leg based double armbar. Naito manages another ropebreak, so ZSJ backs off. ZSJ toys with Naito then gives him a EuroUpper. Naito chops back, so ZSJ trips him up and twists his neck again. ZSJ lets Naito get up to then float over to a cravat. Naito works his way up to arm-drag out. ZSJ runs in but misses, Naito jump kicks but it’s ZSJ who sweeps! The New Japan Cup champ has the G1 Climax 27 champ down and out while we go to break.

NJPW on AXS returns and Naito gets back up at 13. He returns to the ring at 15 but ZSJ stands on him to then get the ankle lock. ZSJ shifts to a Half Crab that shifts to an STF that shifts to a crossface. Naito reverses with a roll, TWO! ZSJ has a grounded cravat that he bridges and then rolls back. He gets a headscissor as Naito sits up, then grabs an ankle. They both roll and Naito is still in the headscissor. ZSJ squeezes but then Naito gets his own headscissor. ZSJ pries his way up and out and back to a half crab. He just stands on Naito’s head and body now to humiliate more than hurt. Naito gets up and chops ZSJ. ZSJ headbutts, EuroUppers, then whips. Naito reverses and reels ZSJ in for the backbreaker and dropkick! Both men are down as fans rally.

Naito stands and fires of on ZSJ. He whips but ZSJ reverses, only for Naito to come out with the headscssiors. Jump kick, leg sweep, and swinging dropkick! Naito poses while ZSJ checks his mouth. Naito elbows ZSJ, then brings him back up. ZSJ reverses the neckbreaker to a facelock, but Naito reels him in for the atomic drop.  Naito runs in at the corner but has to block ZSJ’s boots. ZSJ kicks Naito but Naito holds on. Naito spits, so ZSJ kicks more. Naito turns him sideways for a draping backbreaker! Then a standing neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Fans rally for Naito while he thinks of what to do next. Naito circles ZSJ and brings him up in a waistlock. ZSJ gets a standing switch to full nelson but Naito arm-drags out. They collide, elbow for elbow, and back again. Naito rolls for the kick but into an STF!

Naito drags himself around but ZSJ switches to part Rings of Saturn! He keeps Naito’s face back with a leg but Naito uses a leg to get the ropes. ZSJ again lets Naito go, and both men are down from exhaustion. Taka coaches ZSJ up but the fans are on Naito’s side still. ZSJ stands first and kicks at Naito. Naito takes them in stride, a grin on his face. Naito fires a forearm and a back elbow and ZSJ falls. Fans fire up as Naito throws more elbows, but ZSJ comes back with a EuroUpper. Naito elbows, ZSJ falls again. Now Naito toys with ZSJ, but ZSJ SLAPS Naito. ZSJ fires EuroUppers but ends up in a backslide. He rolls through but runs into the tornado DDT! Naito drags ZSJ up. Hammerlock and lift, but ZSJ counters with a guillotine that becomes a triangle hold!

Naito endures the squeeze while ZSJ prevents a cover. Naito uses power to lift but ZSJ wrenches back. ZSJ brings Naito back down and Naito starts to fade. Fans keep rallying, Naito jackknifes! TWO, and ZSJ penalty kicks Naito down! ZSJ drags Naito back up, but Naito suplexes into the dragon sleeper, for a reverse DDT! Fans cheer Naito while Taka shouts for ZSJ to get up. Naito sits up but ZSJ follows. They stand, and Naito elbows ZSJ again. ZSJ gives a EuroUpper but that arm is hurting. Naito chops but ZSJ slaps. Naito SLAPS, then hammerlocks, GLORIA! Cover, TWO!! Naito fires himself up as he drags ZSJ up. ZSJ sees it coming, and Peles the arm. Naito rolling kicks then whips. ZSJ reverses, catches the flying forearm, into an Octopus hold!

Naito endures being bent and stretched, but ZSJ’s arm is also bothering him. Fans rally for Naito and he manages to step towards ropes. ZSJ does what he can to pull on Naito, such as pulling the right arm all the way back. Naito still steps forward, but ZSJ pulls again. Naito uses one last effort and gets another ropebreak. ZSJ lets him go, and both men fall from exhaustion. Fans and Taka rally their favorites up again, and ZSJ sits up first. Naito follows but ZSJ penalty kicks Naito right back down! And he does it again! But Naito still stands. ZSJ goes for a third but gets caught into a German Suplex. Naito whips but ZSJ reverses, to get the flying forearms! Naito drags ZSJ up, arm wrench, but ZSj counters into the EuroClutch! TWO!? Naito misses his enziguri, ZSJ EuroClutches again, TWO!?

ZSJ EuroUppers but gets an enziguri. Naito backs up, runs in, but ZSJ slips out of the tilt-o-whirl to Octopus. Naito slips out this time to DESTINO! But he’s not done, here comes another D– no, Michinoku Driver! Cover, ZSJ wins!!

Winner: Zack Sabre Jr. by pinfall; ZSJ earns 2 points, Naito earns 0

The Submission Master uses a shout out to his coach and he spoils Naito’s chances! There will not be a repeat for the previous G1 Climax champion, and this leaves the way open for one half of the Golden Lovers!

 

Kenny Omega VS Kota Ibushi!

They may not always have been a team, but the Golden Lovers have always been friends and rivals. The Cleaner is the IWGP Heavyweight Champion, but the Golden Star won’t give up his own desire for that belt. A dream match becomes reality, but who will live the dream of competing in the tournament finals?

The bell rings, and fans fire up as the two friends take a moment to stare down. They circle, Omega lunges in and gets the leg. He floats to a facelock and holds on as they go around. He goes to a waistlock and counters Ibushi’s standing switch. Omega gets a half nelson then another facelock as they stand. Ibushi has Omega on the ropes, but honors the ropebreak. But Omega brings him back in with a headlock. Ibushi powers out, Omega runs him over, but Ibushi kips up. Things speed up, Omega holds rope but still runs into a dropkick! Omega bails out but comes right back in to chop Ibushi! Omega whips but Ibushi holds ropes, so Omega chops again. The whip goes through but Ibushi dodges to kick. Ibushi kicks but is blocked, Omega chops. Omega runs but into the kick!

Omega bails out but longer this time, so Ibushi slingshots out! He crashes and burns, Omega saw that one coming. Omega brings Ibushi up to put him into railing. Then he scoop slams him onto the apron! Omega drags Ibushi back up and into the ring. Fans fire up as Omega returns and runs, Kotaro Krusher! Cover, TWO! Omega keeps his cool while fans cheer Ibushi on. Omega clubs Ibushi, then stomps him. He kicks Ibushi around, but Ibushi grows stronger with every hit. Omega runs, and dropkicks Ibushi down! Ibushi stands, kicks and snapmares Omega, to then kick him swiftly in the neck. Omega kicks and cravats but Ibushi counters to snapmare and kick, kick, kick! Omega gets up to shove and punch.

Now it’s a brawl back and forth, but Omega kicks low. Omega boots Ibushi into a corner, then runs in. Ibushi goes up and over to then powerslam and moonsault! But onto knees! Omega knows Ibushi so well, and he drags Ibushi up for fireman’s carry. “You Can’t Escape! Rolling senton, but the moonsault gets knees! Ibushi knows Omega so well, too! Ibushi runs, but into a huricanrana. But Ibushi then comes back with his own huricanrana! Omega ends up outside again, and Ibushi runs, but Omega intercepts the golden triangle for a full nelson! Ibushi holds ropes and elbows Omega back. Omega chops Ibushi’s back, then Electric Chair lifts! But Ibushi fights him off again, to then deadlift. Omega fights out with uppercuts, then has Ibushi on the shoulder, apron package tombstone!! Both Golden Lovers are down while we go to break.

NJPW on AXS returns as Omega climbs up top. Ibushi slowly stands, but he gets the missile dropkick to the face! Then cross fisherman, Aoi Shoudou! Cover, TWO!! Ibushi lives and fans fire up for him. Omega grits his teeth, takes aim and… BANG! Omega runs, but he misses. Ibushi waistlocks but Omega standing switches. Omega shoves and chops Ibushi in the back! He whips and V-Triggers to the back! Omega drags Ibushi up, Electric Chair, but Ibushi resists. Pop-up, Croyt’s Wrath! With the bridge! TWO!! Ibushi narrowly escapes, but Omega stays focused. V-Trigger! Then the double underhook, but Ibushi resists again. They speed up, running DDT! Ibushi rolls out of the ring, but Omega hears the Terminator drums. Omega rises, builds speed, and FLIES! Direct hit on Ibushi!

Both men are down but Omega stands first. Omega drags Ibushi up and in, and fans rally up. Omega climbs up top again, but Ibushi PELE to stop him! Ibushi climbs up to join Omega, but Omega resists whatever lift Ibushi is after. The Young Bucks are concerned at ringside as Omega starts to shovel Ibushi up. Ibushi slips off to chop and SUPER STEINER! Cover, TWO!! Fans rally up again and Omega bails out. Ibushi runs, Golden Triangle! Direct hit on Omega! The Golden Lovers are down again, but Ibushi is up first now. Ibushi puts Omega in, then climbs up top. Ibushi springboards but Omega catches him into the Electric Chair! But Ibushi fights out fast to strike fest and roundhouse Omega down. Knee-sault! Cover, TWO!!

Omega survives that innovative knee drop, but Ibushi isn’t out of ideas yet. Ibushi drags Omega up, with double wrists, but Omega dodges the knee. Ibushi dodges to Pele again! He grabs Omega, but Omega slips out of the bomb to V-Trigger. Ibushi blocks but gets the second V-Trigger. Omega full nelsons but Ibushi fights out. Omega heel kicks him into a corner! Then from corner to corner, V-Trigger! Omega drags Ibushi up to the top rope, then climbs up to join him. Omega sits Ibushi up, puts on the full nelson, but Ibushi fights out again. Ibushi elbows but Omega headbutts. Omega stands up now, another attempt at the full nelson, SUPER SNAP DRAGON! But Ibushi stands right up!

The Golden Lovers collide with double clotheslines, then do it again. Omega kicks the other one away to V-Trigger! Ibushi reverses to snap German! But Omega’s up, so he gets a Half ‘n Half, and CLOBBERING CLOTHESLINE! Ibushi has control while we go to break!

NJPW on AXS returns and Ibushi drags Omega up. Ibushi wants the bomb, and gets the Golden Star sit-out powerbomb! Cover, TWO!? Even Ibushi is shocked. But he drags Omega up again with the double wristlocks, KAMIGOYE!! Cover, TWO!?! Ibushi cannot understand how Omega survives. Ibushi uncovers his knee and brings Omega back up. Omega resists because he knows what’s coming. Ibushi stomps and clubs Omega. Omega fights back with forearms and elbows. Omega throws more of those, but then Ibushi fires back! They go back and forth, but neither man backs down. Omega hits, but Ibushi responds. They give shorter and faster forearms now but neither man lets go of the wristlock. Omega headbutts but Ibushi kicks! Ibushi kicks but gets a V-Trigger! He staggers, but chops!

Ibushi fires palm strikes and body shots. He runs, but into the V-Trigger! Omega runs again, but into a roundhouse! They’re both down, but fans fire up for Ibushi. Ibushi hears them and decides to climb up top. Phoenix Splash flops as Omega evades. Omega stands, to V-Trigger Ibushi in the back! Then suddenly, butterfly piledriver! Cover, TWO!! Now Omega is shocked that Ibushi lives. Omega pulls his own knee pad down, to V-Trigger! Then Electric Chair, but Ibushi fights again. Reverse-Rana is blocked by sheer will, and Omega makes it like a driver! Cover, TWO!?! Omega aims again, BANG! Another V-Trigger! Then another Electric Chair, but Ibushi holds ropes. Omega climbs!? Ibushi senses this and fights for his life. Ibushi positions himself, SUPER double stomps!

Omega barely stays on the top rope, but Ibushi comes back up to join him. Ibushi drags Omega up, in a double underhook, SUPER TIGER BOMB!! Cover, TWO??! But how?! Ibushi keeps going, dragging Omega up with both hands, KAMIGOYE!! Cover, Ibushi wins!!

Winner: Kota Ibushi, by pinfall; Ibushi earns 2 points, Omega earns 0

The Golden Lovers dream match ends with Ibushi scoring a victory over the IWGP Heavyweight Champion! With this, Ibushi wins the B Block and qualifies for THE G1 Climax 27 Finals! Ibushi meets Hiroshi Tanahashi for that chance at the title at Wrestle Kingdom. But because they’re great friends, Omega celebrates with Ibushi before letting him take the ring alone.

Ibushi speaks.

“Kenny, Matt, Nick,” and everyone in the Elite, “Thank you very much.” Ibushi thanks all the wrestlers in NJPW, too. Ibushi still lives in the G1 Climax, and vows to win the finals the very next day. He keeps things short and sweet so that he and the Elite can all leave together. Can the Star surpass The Ace to then give us a sequel to this amazing match? Or will The Once in a Century Talent score his third G1 Climax championship?

 

Backstage interviews.

The Golden Elite are all together, as Omega notes that he somehow made it here on his own power. He admits he doesn’t like that he lost, especially as champion. But losing to his tag partner and best friend, Ibushi, and knowing he goes to the finals to face Tanahashi, makes Omega happy. Omega gives his full support, and will be in Ibushi’s corner. Ibushi accepts his friend’s support, and is himself very happy. He can’t believe he won. It doesn’t seem real yet. But Ibushi has made it to the finals, and again vows to win it all. He’s been focused on that single goal, he just has one match to go. Was tonight’s dream match a preview of Wrestle Kingdom? Or perhaps something sooner rather than later?

 


 

My Thoughts:

An amazing night, especially factoring in the context of the incredible action. Naito VS ZSJ in a New Japan Cup goes the same way as the match in the New Japan Cup, but naturally escalated up. Naito was well-prepared for the submissions and got the ropebreak quite a few times, but in the end ZSJ wins out. Given the points, it makes sense to keep Naito out of the running. It adds drama to Omega VS Ibushi, because then it becomes another “win and you’re in.” Actually, B Block parallels A Block in that respect, as Jay White was the third man who could complicate Okada VS Tanahashi, until he lost to Evil. But Naito is fine not going into the finals again, as fans still love him, and there’s plenty of unfinished business with other wrestlers, such as Chris Jericho over the IWGP Intercontinental Championship.

Then Omega VS Ibushi is definitely worthy of a block finals. The story was already there with them being such close friends and tag team partners. The counters, the back and forth, it was so great. Ibushi benefits the most from winning here because he was perhaps the underdog against the IWGP Heavyweight Champion, and now earns the right to challenge Omega even without the G1 Climax contract for Wrestle Kingdom. Of course, Tomohiro Ishii has a similar claim he can make, so Ibushi can wait for one of the bigger NJPW events to give us the epic sequel.

My Score: 8.9/10


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Lucha Libre

Joe’s Lucha Libre Weekly: News & Opinions

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Joe Lucha Libre Report
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CMLL

CMLL Anniversary

We saw at the anniversary show, in predictable fashion, Rush and Cavernario defeat Volador and Matt Taven in the hair vs hair match. Everyone knew what the result would be which helped kill intrigue in the match because as discussed before, if CMLL was willing to hair Rush lose his hair it would be against LA Park and if he were to lose it against anybody else it wouldn’t make sense. So Volador and Taven lost 2 falls to 1 and at the end of the match, as a way to weasel out of it Taven turned on Volador as if it was his plan all along but they weren’t going to stand for it. I wonder how much Taven had his head shaved, I suppose we shall see on the next Ring of Honor live event. The show was pretty close to a sell out containing 16,000 fans.

The Co-main event saw Pentagon, Fenix, and Diamante Azul defeating LA Park, his son, and Caristico 2 falls to 1 in what was a very good match. LA Park, for a man who is very large in his older age can still put on some very good matches and held his own in their with the much young Fenix and Pentagon and the always entertaining Caristico. The match before that which was the Kaos Klan vs Los Guerrero’s for the trios title. This wasn’t in technical terms a very good match, but it had heat on it. One of the issues was the finish was a complete let down and out of nowhere. Not in a good way either, sometimes out of nowhere finishes are good if they’re done during hot moments, but this one was just a standard pin with feet on the ropes.

CMLL Friday Show/Future

The top three matches for this show will feature a rematch with Kaos Klan and Los Guerrero’s. This is the third time this match is happening in a short span so I wonder if they will have Los Guerrero’s win here after potentially swerving the fans at the Anniversary show. It was a weak finish and wasn’t a good match so I have to imagine that they’re going to put forth a better performance this time. However, a lot of the men involved are much older and broken down so they need the pomp and circumstances more. We also have a lightning round match between Mistico and Negro Casas so that should be something. They must be going for a program with them.

In the main event we have, Atlantis, King Fenix, and Diamante Azul vs Rush, Cavernario, and El Terrible. I wonder if my theory about building a program with Rush and Atlantis for next year starts and if maybe they move towards Fenix and Cavernario. I can only imagine how good those singles matches would be. LA Park worked the Arena Puebla show with Rush in the match. This was a very good match, perhaps an anniversary show standard.

There was a lot of instances in the match where Park and Rush had a show down one on one in the ring. It was a very long match and very good. Rush won with a low blow and Park then cut a promo after the match challenging him hair vs mask again to which CMLL cut his mic. But it magically turned on when Rush got the mic. Park was upset and left. They are promoting LA Park and Hijo Del LA Park vs Rush and Cavernario next week for the Monday Puebla show. So it looks like they’re going back to this well for financial purposes, who knows if the hair vs mask match will ever happen.

AAA

AAA has announced their big October Show, the Antonio Pena tribute show, and it has a pretty big card, with the main event being Jeff Jarrett vs Dr. Wagner Jr in a hair vs hair match. I’m almost positive Jarrett is losing that match especially if they’re building towards Park vs Wagner at the next Triplemania. Wagner is gonna need to have more hair grown out to make it a viable match on paper. He doesn’t have much hair so why would the fans buy his hair vs the value of Park’s mask? I feel like there’d be so much more intrigue with Psycho Clown vs Park mask vs mask, but it all depends on when and who Park wants to lose to. Everyone seems to agree that it has to be to Rush whenever the time is.

Also on that card which we’ll preview more in the coming weeks, Park will team with Psycho Clown against Murder Clown and Kevin Kross. So something is going to have to happen in the coming weeks that pairs Kross with Murder Clown because they were just attacking each other during the last encounter with Wagner and Jeff Jarrett. A three way tag match for the tag titles will happen and Bandido and Flamita will actually get their chance. There was rumblings wondering if AAA would remember the stipulation on the Triplemania show. There’s also a four way match for the women’s title. More info in the coming weeks as the card gets built on the TV tapings.

AAA on Twitch 9/21

We will have a women’s match to start the show, which seems to be typical featuring, Keyra, Lady Maravilla, and Starfire vs Faby Apache, La Hiedra, and Lady Shani. We get a six man tag team match next which will be action packed featuring, Emperador Azteca, Demus, and Ciclon Ramierz vs Aerostar, Argenis, and Nino Hamburguesa. The next match is a three way tag match between Texano Jr and Escorpion vs Maximo and Mamba vs El Hijo De Dr. Wagner Jr and Golden Magic.

The co-main event is another six man tag between, Laredo Kid, Tayrys, and Hijo Del LA Park vs La Parka, Pagano, and Joe Lider. Any match with Joe Lider and Pagano is bound to be crazy. The main event sees LA Park teaming with Electro Shock vs Psycho Clown and El Hijo Del Fantasma. The theme of this show is Lucha Libre Elite vs AAA. They’re playing up an invasion storyline. They have another show on September 30th but I will preview that one next week.

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