Aleister Black is the 13th NXT Champion, but will this prove to be bad luck against the Blackheart Psycho Killer, Tommaso Ciampa?
All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter
- Adam Cole VS Sean Maluta; Cole wins.
- Lacey Evans VS Tenilla Price; Lacey wins.
- NXT Championship: Aleister Black VS Tommaso Ciampa; Ciampa wins and becomes the new NXT Champion.
PLAY BY PLAY
It’s time for darkness to fight darkness.
TakeOver: Chicago tested the Embodiment of the End. But the Devil on His Back is still with him, because he still has the NXT Championship. However, there’s a devil knocking on his door. Tommaso Ciampa also survived Chicago and his truly brutal Street Fight with Johnny Gargano. Aleister has something Ciampa wants. Aleister says that Ciampa may see himself as a devil, but Ciampa knows nothing of the devil on Aleister’s back. Ciampa brushes that off as smoke and mirrors. He promises to snuff out the mystique like a candle. Aleister tells Ciampa he’s lost and confused, but Ciampa has his path to the title. Whose darkness will envelope the other to take the NXT Championship for their own?
Adam Cole VS Sean Maluta!
The inaugural NXT North American Champion takes on the Cruiserweight Classic competitor who is still looking to make big moves in his NXT career. Can Maluta get a non-title win to put himself in line for a title shot?
Fans are on Cole’s side as the bell rings. They tie up and Cole puts Maluta in a corner. Cole grinds in cocky forearms, but backs off at the ref’s count. Cole grins but Maluta shrugs it off. The two circle again, then tie up. Cole gets a waistlock and slam, then slaps Maluta around. The champ is having fun but Maluta is not amused. Maluta keeps his cool as he circles with Cole again. Maluta gets around to a roll up, ONE. Now he tries a backslide, ONE. Cole misses, gets a neckbreaker!
Cole gets to a corner, and Maluta comes in with a boot. Maluta hops up but Cole trips him up! Maluta hits the mat while Cole checks his chin. Cole takes his frustration out on Maluta with a ground ‘n’ pound. Cole drops angry ax handles, then kicks Maluta in the ribs. He drags Maluta up and into a corner, to throw heavy hands. He hoists Maluta up to the top rope, then climbs up to join him. Maluta headbutts Cole back! Maluta adjusts, but jumps into a SUPERKICK! Then, with knee pad down, Last Shot Shining Wizard! Cover, Cole wins!
Winner: Adam Cole, by pinfall
Another win for Adam Cole BAYBAY! Cole has been on a hot streak as of late, but he has yet to find a worthy contender. Cole takes up the mic to speak.
“Adam Cole is the most buzzworthy superstar on ANY brand!” That’s because of what Cole gets done in the ring. He defends his title all over the world and North America, even the UK! Example: Maluta, a “young hungry upstart” looking for his opportunity. Who gave him the opportunity? Adam Cole, Baybay. So if there’s anyone who wants a shot– Ricochet appears!
The One and Only responds to Cole’s claims by saying he owes Cole an apology. Cole didn’t run away from competition. Granted, it wasn’t for the title and against a guy Cole won’t even remember, but Ricochet respects Cole is doing his own thing. Ricochet also gives Cole credit that ever since joining NXT, he’s take the industry by storm. But since becoming champion, Cole has shockingly done nothing but be a coward. That’s just Ricochet’s opinion. Maybe COle can change his mind. Cole really is good, but to prove it, have a match. Fans like where this is going. Ricochet wants Cole to have a match with the North American Championship on the line, at TakeOver: Brooklyn IV… against Ricochet. “Unless I was right about you, baybay.”
Cole considers his options, and admits Ricochet is right. Cole is “so, so good”, which is why Cole won’t diminish himself in a match with Ricochet. The champ takes his leave, but fans boo and jeer. Ricochet says that’s fine by him. Leave, like the coward you are. Cole gets mad now, but fans chant “Coward~!” at him. He gets back in the ring but Ricochet scares him off with the handspring superhero landing! Cole shouts he doesn’t have to prove a thing to anyone. The Undisputed Era comes to back Cole up, and now Cole has courage. But to back Ricochet up, are the WAR RAIDERS!
Rowe & Hanson scare Undisputed Era down the ramp then out the side. The Undisputed Era says this is their NXT, but then MUSTACHE MOUNTAIN appears! And a fight begins! Tyler Bate & Trent Seven scare Undisputed Era all the way backstage. Those titles are now targets on their back, can the Undisputed Era survive the Summer?
NXT GM William Regal presides over the Women’s Championship contract signing.
With Kairi Sane and Shayna Baszler seated at the table, Regal is excited at this rematch from the inaugural Mae Young Classic finals. The Queen of Spades has it stop there. This isn’t a simple rematch, because they had that rematch and Shayna won. Shayna’s changed in the last year in NXT. She has a killer instinct the Pirate Princess doesn’t, which is why Shayna’s at the top, and Kairi’s still living off her past glory. Kairi hasn’t done anything since! Kairi simply takes the contract and signs, with an icy stare at Shayna. Regal finalizes the contract while Kairi speaks up. “I know it. You know it. I can beat you.”
Shayna wants Kairi to listen: she doesn’t have what it takes, and is living in a fantasy world. Kairi and the entire locker room are just pretending to be tough. Dakota Kai pretends to have what it takes. Candice LeRae pretends to have what it takes when she should be home being a wife. Kairi pretends to be a pirate after treasure. But they’re all phonies, “and it’s pathetic.” Kairi sighs, as she vows, “In Brooklyn, I will beat you.” Shayna signs, and says that while Kairi isn’t listening now, she will be listening when they say “And still your NXT Women’s Champion.” Shayna storms out, and Kairi lets Regal knows Shayna still knows Kairi can win. Neither side is backing down from their argument, but who will win the fight come TakeOver?
Lacey Evans VS Tenilla Price!
The Lady of NXT has been on a roll as of late, armed with her Woman’s Right. She still needs to climb up towards the NXT Women’s Championship, can she do it against this debuting superstar?
The bell rings and Lacey dares Tenilla to approach. Tenilla does, and they tie up. Lacey powers Tenilla to a corner and grinds in her forearm. She backs off at 4 but comes back to throw Tenilla by her hair! Lacey then runs in for the headstand bronco buster! Tenilla is reeling but Lacey is on her with the draping armlock. Lacey lets up at 4, but then pulls on Tenilla’s hair more to tie it to the rope! The referee reprimands her but Lacey kicks Tenilla loos to then drive in elbow after elbow. Fans boo and jeer but Lacey simply salutes. Then she sweeps Tenilla’s legs and drops the slingshot elbow! Lacey brings Tenilla up for the swinging neckbreaker. She goes for the rolling cover but gets knees from Tenilla! Tenilla runs in at Lacey in the corner, handspring into a WOMAN’S RIGHT! Lacey covers, Lacey wins!
Winner: Lacey Evans, by pinfall
The Model Soldier wipes her brow, she actually worked up a little sweat. She dumps her handkerchief on Tenilla, treating her like the trash can. Will Lacey continue to #ActLikeaLady all the way to title contention?
Backstage interview with Bianca Belair.
The EST is back from her honeymoon, but she’s injured. Because of this, she missed out on the NXT Women’s Championship #1 Contenders match, but that’s not an excuse or anything to be ashamed of. She doesn’t need to work hard to prove herself, she’s undefeated. Everyone has time to catch up but they can’t. Bianca will work her hardest in physical rehab, and when she returns, she will get what she deserves as the undefeated woman of NXT! Bianca repeats this over and over as she takes her leave. Who will be the champion she aims for once she is back to 100%?
NXT Media catches up to Shayna Baszler backstage.
She just finished her contract signing, but her “strong words for a weak person” was no big deal. However, Candice gets up in Shayna’s face over the trash talk she keeps giving. Serena Deeb keeps Mrs. Wrestling from attacking the champ, despite Shayna egging her on. Candice knows now’s not her time, but she’ll find it soon enough. Shayna shrugs it off while taking her leave, but will #BullyBaszler even make it through Brooklyn?
NXT Championship: Aleister Black VS Tommaso Ciampa!
The Dutch Destroyer has made all his opponents in 1v1 action #FadetoBlack, even the lethal Leviathan, Lars Sullivan. However, he’s never gone against someone as sinister as the Sicilian Psycho. Can Aleister keep the number 13 from being bad luck? Or will Ciampa finally have his golden moment?
Both men get in each other’s face as Aleister makes his entrance, but the referee keeps the peace. Fans are clearly on Aleister’s side as the two back off. The introductions are made, the title is raised, and we begin!
The two stare down while fans fire up. Ciampa lets Aleister know it’ll be a simple “one, two, three”, but that only angers the champ. They tie up and go around the ring along the ropes and into a corner. Ciampa has control but the ref counts. He brings Aleister out with an arm wrench and arm lock. Aleister works against the hold for a takedown, going for the leg. Ciampa gets a chinlock but Aleister slides out the back. Ciampa gets a facelock but Aleister reverses to his own. Fans applaud the grappling while Ciampa works to stand up. Ciampa reverses to his own wrench, then a headlock. Aleister powers out but Ciampa runs him over. Ciampa runs while fans boo and things speed up. he fakes out the arm-drag to Oklahoma Roll, TWO! That was close, and CIampa grins because he knows it.
Ciampa and Aleister circle again, then tie up. Fans actually duel as Ciampa gets a hand for the wristlock. Aleister rolls through then reverses to a headlock. Aleister brings Ciampa to the mat, but Ciampa stands back up. Ciampa powers out but Aleister rolls off the back to small package. TWO, so he tries a school boy. TWO, so Aleister uses the arm-drag to armlock. Ciampa sits up while Alesiter wrenches the shoulder. Ciampa stands and breaks free to pie-face Aleister. Aleister swings a kick but Ciampa narrowly evades. Aleister chases Ciampa around but gets caught in a facelock! He gets away, and Ciampa is furious he didn’t get the draping DDT. Ciampa storms back over, but Aleister trips him to drag him out of the ring! Aleister ducks the punch to give a SWIFT roundhouse!
Aleister keeps kicking and hitting Ciampa as the go around the ring. Ciampa gets in and pounces with ax handles and stomps. Ciampa drags Aleister up for body shots in a corner. He whips Aleister corner to corner but Aleister goes up and over to then roundhouse Ciampa again! Ciampa crawls around, uses the ref as a shield, but still gets another kick! He goes to the apron but Aleister in on him with a boot. Aleister runs, but he fakes Ciampa out to springboard back and sit down. He even waves good-bye at Ciampa, the same way Ciampa waves at all his victims. Fans fire up for Aleister while Ciampa refocuses himself. Ciampa takes his time returning, but the ring count climbs. Ciampa gets in at 8, but then goes back out to troll Aleister.
Aleister waits for Ciampa, gets him at the ropes, but Ciampa puts him against them. Ciampa gets a cheap body shot, but Aleister comes back with a waistlock. Ciampa elbows out, but gets a swift kick! Aleister tries a German Suplex, but Ciampa runs at the ropes to hotshot Aleister off. Ciampa runs but into a boot! Aleister runs, but his springboard is dumped outside! Ciampa throws Aleister into barriers, the apron, and then steel steps! Aleister writhes while Ciampa copies the cross-leg sit. Ciampa waves at Aleister before refreshing the count. Ciampa puts Aleister in the ring, then stalks the champ. He dropkicks an arm out, then covers, TWO. Ciampa rams knees into Aleister’s ribs, then pulls back with the half camel clutch.
Fans rally up while Aleister endures. Aleister powers his way up and out, but Ciampa gets him with a pendulum backbreaker! Fans boo and jeer and even chant “You Suck!” at Ciampa as he stalks Aleister. Ciampa drops springboard knees into Aleister’s ribs, then drags Aleister up. He shoves and brings Aleister into an abdominal stretch on the rebound. Aleister endures the bending and pulling, but doesn’t quit. Fans rally up but CIampa reaches back to use the ropes. The referee sees this, so Ciampa lets go at 4. Ciampa brings Aleister back up but Aleister hits back. Ciampa knees low, then suplexes Aleister up. Aleister slips out, but his back gives out as he attempts a German suplex. Ciampa trips him up to then get the Cloverleaf! Aleister resists but Ciampa gets the turn-over.
Aleister endures all that back pain, and drags himself towards ropes. He gets the ropebreak! Ciampa has to let go, and grows frustrated. He and Aleister go to the apron, and Ciampa drags Aleister up by his hair. Ciampa throws a big forearm, but Aleister comes back with one. They brawl on the apron back and forth. Aleister kicks and kicks, and Ciampa goes back inside. Fans rally up while Aleister slowly climbs. Ciampa intercepts, then climbs up to join him. Ciampa has a fireman’s carry, that he shifts around, but Aleister slips out. Aleister wants a powerbomb but Ciampa denies it, so Aleister ditches that to kick out Ciampa’s legs! Ciampa tumbles to the mat, clutching his bad leg.
Fans rally up for Aleister as he aims at Ciampa. Aleister runs into a kick, and Ciampa wants a powerbomb. Aleister resists and back drops Ciampa. Ciampa tries a sunset flip but Aleister sits on it! TWO to Ciampa’s cover, TWO. They get up but collide heads! Both men are down but the fans are rallying up again. Ciampa sits up first and brings Aleister up. Ciampa throws hands but Aleister hits kicks. Aleister dodges the boot to rally with elbows. Ciampa kicks but gets a kick instead. Aleister sweeps the legs to hit the basement dropkick! Aleister handsprings up and is fired up as he glares at Ciampa. He waits for Ciampa to stand to give the strike fest. Aleister runs, QUEBRADA! Cover, TWO!
Ciampa gets to a corner, Aleister runs in, but Ciampa puts him on the corner. Aleister hits Ciampa away but then gets caught in the facelock. He fights his way out to kick Ciampa down again. Aleister stalks Ciampa, but Ciampa swings on him. Aleister blocks to give another strike fest! Cover, TWO! Aleister grows a little frustrated, but he dares Ciampa to get up. Ciampa slowly crawls over, but then asks for mercy. Aleister shows no mercy, “Tweet about this!” He gives stiffer roundhouses to Ciampa’s chest! He even stomps Ciampa out of the ring. Aleister drags Ciampa back up and in through the ropes. Ciampa senses what Aleister wants and scrambles away. Aleister pursues but Ciampa trips him up on the apron! Ciampa climbs up, and hits a FLYING DDT!! Cover, TWO!!
Ciampa is frustrated, but he’s not done yet. He calls back to DIY, but that killer knee is caught! Aleister swings a kick, misses, and gets a lariat! Cover, TWO! Ciampa pulls the knee pads down, runs, but into a knee of Aleister’s! Cover, TWO!! Fans chant “NXT! NXT!” and “This is Awesome!” for this amazing main event. Aleister gets up first, and still has one card to play. He lifts Ciampa with a foot, and waves bye. But Ciampa ducks to roll him up! TWO!!! Ciampa runs into a boot, then Aleister hits Meteora! Then a roundhouse, to German Suplex! Bridging cover, TWO!? Ciampa survives, and manages to slip out of the ring.
Fans are thunderous with their standing ovation, but Aleister keeps going. He runs to the apron and corner for a SUPER ASAI but he lands on his feet as Ciampa gets clear. Ciampa shoves Aleister into a cameraman! Ciampa puts Aleister in the ring, and while the ref is distracted, he grabs a CRUTCH! He jams it into Aleister’s neck! Cover, TWO!!! Ciampa is furiously shocked. He drags Aleister up, puts him through the ropes and drapes him out. But Aleister gets in and dumps Ciampa all the way out. Aleister runs, to FLY! Direct hit with the tope conjilo. Aleister hurries to put Ciampa in the ring, but on reentry, DRAPING DDT!! Ciampa covers, TWO!?!? This is unheard of!
Ciampa refuses to accept this, and has one more classic move to use. He exposes bare concrete! The referee reprimands Ciampa, but Ciampa doesn’t care. He still brings Aleister over on the apron. Aleister clutches rope to resist, and Ciampa argues with the ref. Ciampa still tries, but Aleister shoves him, into the ref! The referee hits concrete while Aleister hits BLACK MASS!! Cover, but there’s no one to count! The fans get to 10 but it doesn’t matter. Aleister is furious, where is another ref? He goes out to check but the referee’s in no shape. Aleister returns to Ciampa, and Ciampa digs his fingers into Aleister’s eye!!
Fans boo and jeer but Ciampa gets away with it. Ciampa also gets the belt, and brings it into the ring. He aims at Aleister, but here’s Johnny! SUPERKICK! Johnny Gargano grabs the belt, but he and Ciampa tug-o-war with it. Ciampa lets go, and the belt hits Aleister! Then Ciampa throws Gargano out. The referee returns in time for Project Ciampa!! Cover, Ciampa wins!!
Winner: Tommaso Ciampa, by pinfall; NEW NXT Champion
This is truly a tragedy! CIampa reigns over NXT, and Full Sail is in dismay. The fans boo, jeer, chant and even give thumbs down, but Ciampa is still the new champion. The Scourge makes good on his promise to make it one-and-down, and makes sure we all know it. Will this dark day in NXT history mark the beginning of a new era?
Wow! What a great night for NXT! Most of it comes from the main event, but everything before it was still really good. Cole VS Maluta went as expected, but Ricochet daring Cole to a match is great. War Raiders AND Mustache Mountain going after O’Reilly & Strong is also great. I sense all of Undisputed Era will be in action at TakeOver: Brooklyn, and chances are will lose all those belts of there. But that’s fine, because then Cole can go up to NXT Championship while Bobby Fish returns to team with O’Reilly and Strong moves over to the North American Championship. That way, Undisputed Era can be even more decorated in their second reigns together.
Lacey Evans looked good again in that squash of the new girl. Again, she has to wait her turn, but she’ll be fine. Bianca Belair will also be fine, because as she said again and again, she’s undefeated. Candice LeRae is also still primed for at least a feud with Shayna Baszler without the title, that’ll be fun. Shayna VS Kairi Round 3 will be great regardless of who wins, but I’m personally hoping it’s Kairi. Kairi freshens things up enough so that Heels like Lacey and Bianca can step up on the road to WWE Evolution, which will have its own NXT Women’s Championship match. Plus, with Jessamyn Duke & Maria Shafir on the way, Shayna can join her fellow MMA Four Horsewomen to face the NXT/WWE Four Horsewomen.
Then came the NXT Championship main event, HOLY CRAP this was worthy of a TakeOver too. Such great story elements with Ciampa’s game plan, and wow I didn’t think Gargano would cost Aleister like that. This better not be a weird DIY conspiracy thing. Instead, I hope this turns into a triple threat for the title at Brooklyn, and possibly Gargano’s own crowning moment via taking it from his former friend.
My Score: 8.8/10
Dragon Gate Fantastic Gate 2018 Results & Review (12/4/2018)
Mathew brings us more coverage with…Dragon Gate? Well I suppose something big did happen, even though King of Gate was still horrid. But hey, let’s see if PAC’s involvement helps things out.
We now return to Dragon Gate to take a small break from the AJPW Real World Tag League, which you should check out if you haven’t just yet since it’s been a great tournament.
As of right now, this will be my last Dragon Gate coverage for the year due to scheduling with the holidays and work, plus I need to get ready for matches of the year at the end of the month. We got a big show today since we got Open the Dream Gate Championship defended against PAC.
So let us see how things will turn out as we…dive right in.
Eight Man Tag Team Match
Dragon Dia & Tribe Vanguard (BxB Hulk, Kagetora & YAMATO) vs. Don Fujii, Gamma, Ryo Saito & Super Shisa
Review: Our opening contest is an eight-man tag match with Don Fujii, Gamma, Ryo Saito, and Super Shisa taking on three members of Tribe Vanguard, Kagetora and the Open the Twin Gate Champions, BxB Hulk and YAMATO along with Dragon Dia. Dragon Dia is a new wrestler in Dragon Gate as he is also considered to be Dragon Kid’s new apprentice whenever he decides to hang it up. Let’s see how Dragon Dia does and will he help Tribe Vanguard get the victory or will it be the other team?
The match was short and incredibly basic with nothing really too much to make the crowd seem overly invested in it in my opinion. Half of the match is pretty much Dia paying his dues in the ring while also getting a bit of offense into the match, so how did he do? From what I saw out of him, I thought he does have potential to be how Dragon Kid was but he has a long way to go if he wants to reach that level eventually. Dia did take a beating from the other team and even had Gamma kinda waterboard him while he was taking a Mexican Stretch. Tribe Vanguard would do stuff for a little bit into the match and they worked well with each other and not with Dia since he’s not really apart of their unit. Dia would get to have Fujii for a pinfall but he kicked out and hits Dia with a Lariat to end his momentum. Fujii would hit a Chokeslam onto Dia as Ryo would do his SaiRyo Rocket to get the pinfall victory.
Rating: Tony Schiavone and a quarter
Eight Man Tag Team Match
Hyo Watanabe, Kota Minoura, Masaaki Mochizuki & Yuki Yoshioka vs. Hiroshi Yamato & MaxiMuM (Jason Lee, Kaito Ishida & Naruki Doi)
Review: We get another eight-man tag match to continue this show as Masaaki Mochizuki is in action with Hyo Watanabe, Kota Minoura, and Yuki Yoshioka as the four take on Hiroshi Yamato and three MaxiMuM members, Jason Lee, Kaito Ishida, and Naruki Doi. While the opening match wasn’t really something that was memorable, I’m sure we’ll get some action in this one to pick stuff up. Which one of these four will win?
I’m still new to Hiroshi Yamato, but I’m still digging his singing type of gimmick and think it’s pretty funny. This one was a much better match than the opening contest since all of the competitors were more involved in this We had another small encounter with Mochizuki and Lee, and I still wanna see that match happen but I know we probably won’t get a singles match with them any time soon. Yuki is someone that keeps growing on me whenever I see him involved in these tag matches as he does show signs of progress and I hope to see big things from him in 2019. Jason Lee would try to do his taunt in the ring when he’s in his meditative state and rolled up Mochizuki for a two count and when Mochizuki would try to do the same taunt, Jason would just kick his head. Yuki would block Naruki’s Bakatare Sliding Kick but takes a German from Yamato, a Facebuster from Naruki, and a kick along with a German from Lee as they break the hold. Yuki would attempt a flash pin onto Kaito but Kaito would quickly maneuver out of it until Yuki pinned him back down as he gets the surprise victory!
Rating: Eric Bischoff
Shun Skywalker vs. U-T
Review: We only have two singles matches in this show and it’s time to get our first one underway as we have Shun Skywalker taking on U-T. It’s been a while since I’ve seen Shun in a singles match since the King of Gate Tournament and this might be the first time I’ve seen U-T in a singles match, so this is definitely a nice surprise since both men can go. Which one of these two will get the win?
If you were expecting a highflying type of match between these two, you don’t get that type of match here and while it did throw me off, I was honestly okay with it since they still did give us a technical match. For my first time seeing U-T in one on one action, I gotta say that seeing him more ground-based in this match was very surprising in a good way too since he’s very crisp in his ability. Shun Skywalker still continues to impress me every time I see him in the ring, so seeing both of these men deliver in this match made me feel very satisfied.
The match was also very even here and it looked like Shun was going to get him, but U-T would catch him with the Skayde to try and make him tap out to the hold until Shun would roll out of the hold and hits the Moonsault Press for a two count. Shun would hit a Reverse Suplex and goes to the top rope to go for another Moonsault as U-T puts his knees up before Shun could land. U-T would apply the Skayde once again but Shun would refuse to tap out of the hold once again and the bell rings to show that there’s a time limit draw. Huge ovation for these two in this match and I hope this isn’t the end for them.
Rating: Bruce Prichard
Six Man Tag Team Match
Dragon Kid, Bandido, & Flamita vs. DAGA & R.E.D. (Eita & Ben-K)
Review: Our next match is a six-man tag team match with Dragon Kid teaming up with Flamita and Bandido is they take on R.E.D. We found out that Dragon Kid and Eita are going to have one final match at Final Gate in a hair vs mask match, but I’m not sure if the Open the Brave Gate Championship is on the line yet. But this is sure to be an exciting tag bout and let’s see if R.E.D wins or the luchadors take it.
R.E.D starting the attack on their opponents before the match started in their typical heel fashion. The face team would start to make a comeback with Bandido and Flamita diving to the outside onto their opponents. Seeing Kid, Flamita, and Bandido team up worked out very well here with their Luchador agility with Bandido once again being on fire in this match and if he’s someone you follow, what the hell is wrong with you? Get on that shit right away if you like Lucha Libre. It’s a shame Ben didn’t win the belt but I know he’ll bounce back into something soon, maybe going back to the Open the Twin Gate picture with Big R. Eita and Dragon Kid going back at it develops more fuel into their story and I actually can’t wait for it to end and not because it felt like it went on for too long, but with the new stipulation they added to their match, it just adds a lot more involved for their eventual conclusion. After Flamita and Bandido did their tag team combo with Bandido hitting a Phoenix Splash after being flipped over, Eita and Kid are alone in the ring again. Dragon jumped off the ropes and got caught for a Super Kick and would go to finish off Kid but he hits the Bible onto Eita to get the surprise victory!
Rating: Eric Bischoff and a half
Eight Man Tag Team Match
Natural Vibes (Genki Horiguchi, Kzy, Susumu Yokosuka & YASSHI) vs. R.E.D. (Big R Shimizu, KAZMA SAKAMOTO, Takashi Yoshida & Yasushi Kanda)
Review: Our next match is another eight-man tag team match with R.E.D members, Big R Shimizu, KAZMA SAKAMOTO, Takashi Yoshida, and Yasushi Kanda taking on Natural Vibes members, Genki Horiguchi, Kzy, Susumu Yokosuka, and Brother YASSHI. Recently, Natural Vibes broke the record for most title defenses with the Open the Triangle Gate Championships and they still look to hold onto the titles for a long time to keep the record around more. Will Natural Vibes get the win or will it be R.E.D?
R.E.D once again attacking Natural Vibes before the bell would ring and both teams would start fighting to the outside of the ring and into the crowd near the bleachers until they got back into the ring as we get the match started now. The match felt a little too short for this type of match but I thought it was still solid enough for a quick little exhibition type of match. We had a little encounter with Takashi and Kzy during the middle of it where they would go back and forth and it did seem like Takashi was gonna win this little back and forth until Kzy hits his running Elbow Smash onto him. Natural Vibes started to get the shine in the match when Susumu hits an Exploder Suplex onto Kanda off the middle rope and Kzy tops it off with an Elbow Drop while YASSHI hits a Diving Headbutt for a two count. Members were taking each other out left and right until it was Genki and Takashi in the match now as he does his Backslide From Heaven to go for the pin but Big R picked him up in a Wheel Barrel position for a German Suplex. Big R would quickly pick him up for him and Takashi to hit a Doomsday Device and KAZMA topped it off with a Package Piledriver to give R.E.D the win.
Rating: Eric Bischoff and a quarter
Open the Dream Gate Championship
Masato Yoshino (c) vs. PAC
Review: We now have our main event of the evening as Masato Yoshino defends his Open the Dream Gate Championship against PAC. This will be PAC’s second singles match in Dragon Gate ever since he made his return to the company and while his match was disappointing, he still wanted to make the challenge to prove himself. Only one gaijin won the Open the Dream Gate Championship and that man was Ricochet, so if PAC wins then he will be the second one to win it. Masato though won’t go down without a fight here as he defends Dragon Gate against this man. Will Masato retain once again or will we have a new champion?
While both R.E.D and MaxiMuM are surrounding the ring, none of them interfere in the match and I’m glad too because it would’ve been a little bit too much in this match, plus PAC needs to prove himself that he can defeat Masato on his own without any help. I thought this match was a great title defense and definitely PAC’s better match compared to his one with Flamita since this one had a nicer pace that didn’t make it drag out a bit at all and he played the heel persona well like how he did in WWE when he was considered the King of the Cruiserweights, but he’s now known as the Bastard Child in Dragon Gate. I think I liked Masato’s match against Ben-K a little bit better, this one was almost as good in my opinion. One spot I really did like was when Masato went for the Slingblade off the top rope and PAC just flipped out of it and it just looked more smooth. Also, the Corkscrew PAC did to the outside looks great despite him shooting himself a little bit too far since most of the people were a bit too close.
PAC pulled off a lot of power moves like the Pop-up Powerbomb and it looked like he had Masato right where he wanted him as he went to the top rope to go for the Black Arrow but he was able to catch himself once Masato moved out of the way and hits the Another Space and then would hit the first Torbellino as he calls for the submission finish to apply the Sol Naciente, but he wouldn’t hold it for long this time as PAC picked him up for the Powerbomb for a two count. PAC seems to be getting back control now as he would try to go for the Black Arrow once more time but Masato picked his knees up to make PAC land on it and rolled him up for a two count. Masato wouldn’t give PAC time to rest as he hits a second Torbellino and applies the Sol Naciente once again but PAC was unable to power out of it this time around as he falls onto the mat unable to move for a bit until his foot landed on the rope to break the hold. Both men would have bursts of energy in the last stand as Masato lands another Torbellino and PAC gets up quickly to hit Masato with a German Suplex and gets him up for a Powerbomb but Masato would Sunset Flip over him for a two count. PAC would hit a Lariat onto Masato to knock him down before hitting the German Suplex Hold for a two count, and it appears PAC has him right where he wants him as he went to the top rope to the Black Arrow and he connects this time for a three count and we have a new champion!
You heard right, PAC is the new Open the Dream Gate Champion. Part of me feels like it’s a bit too soon to win the belt since he just came back a couple of months ago but at the same time, they wanna capitalize on this while he’s still red hot since leaving WWE and it could potentially open new eyes to the product since most fans knew him as Neville. So in a business aspect, it’s a good idea and hopefully, it can lead to what the company is looking for. Let’s see how things turn out.
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a half
Overall: Aside from the two singles matches being the highlight of the show, nothing else really stood out with the multi-man tag matches throughout the night. U-T and Shun did great work together and PAC had a much better match than he did with Flamita and we got a new champion out of it to bring in a new era for Dragon Gate.
Favorite Match: Masato Yoshino vs. PAC
Least Favorite Match: Dragon Dia & Tribe Vanguard (BxB Hulk, Kagetora & YAMATO) vs. Don Fujii, Gamma, Ryo Saito & Super Shisa
Mitchell’s WWE Mixed Match Challenge 2 Results & Report! (12/11/18)
The Mixed Match Challenge is almost done, but there’s been a last-minute substitution! Apollo Crews replaces Finn Balor, can he help Bayley make it to TLC?
- Jinder Mahal & Alicia w/ The Singh Brothers VS Apollo Crews & Bayley; Mahal & Alicia win and advance to the Finals at TLC.
- The Miz & Asuka VS R-Truth & Carmella; Truth & Carmella win and advance to the Finals at TLC.
PLAY BY PLAY
It’s time for the Mixed Match Challenge Semifinals!
The final four teams will be cut down to just two tonight! The Season One champions are still in the running, but they’ve had a rough go of it this year. The Miz and Asuka lost to the #ExtremeFlair after Jeff Hardy stepped in for AJ Styles. However, not even the top seed still stands as the #FABULOUSTruth pulled off the biggest upset to date! Can Truth & Carmella pull off another upset against a tense and dysfunctional Team AWESKA?
As for the Raw Block, #Mahalicia is the only team standing with its original members! Of course, Jinder Mahal and Alicia Fox have yet to truly see eye to eye despite making it back from the bottom of the block. That said, Finn Balor must step down from the Mixed Match Challenge because of the beating Drew McIntyre gave him on Raw a week ago. In his place now stands Apollo Crews, who wants to finally make his mark on the main roster! Can this new Team A’n’B go all the way to TLC?
Backstage with Bayley & Apollo Crews.
New partners start big with a semifinals match, but the dynamic doesn’t change for Bayley. These two are more prepared than ever, and they’ll be so close to being the #30 spots in their respective Royal Rumbles! But the Singh Brothers come in to get them to slow down. No one cares about where they “think” they’re going, because they’re going home! The Maharrrrraja and Foxy will be Too Sweet. No, better: they can hug it out! Bayley boots the Bollywood Boys out, and says she and Apollo will worry about vacation destinations after the match.
Backstage interview with R-Truth & Carmella!
The FABULOUS Truth is ecstatic for tonight. They had a rough start but are on a roll. They’ll be up against the MMC Champions. Miz & Asuka were worried about every team but Truth & Carmella. Well Miz has run his mouth a long time, and Truth knows that from teaming with Miz back in the day. Truth knows for a fact Asuka carries that team. As for tonight, Mella & Truth will carry SmackDown’s flag all the way to TLC. They vow to win, and that’s the truth. Also, Miz said something about shoes? Check these! Carmella’s kicks are F A B U L O U A S! That’s not how you spell fabulous. That aside, let’s move on to choosing a vacation site. Truth likes the idea of Athens. Greece? Georgia? No, Ohio. Well on to match preparations!
Jinder Mahal & Alicia w/ The Singh Brothers VS Apollo Crews & Bayley!
Team A’n’B already meshed well together when they and The Boss, Sasha Banks, took it to #Mahalicia on Raw. However, Sasha Banks won’t be present to help cancel out Samir & Sunil, will #HugNation be able to overcome Shanti and head to TLC?
Bayley and Apollo talk on the way out, and it’s decided: once they win that vacation, they’ll go to Jamaica. “This one’s for Finn!” The teams then sort out, and the men begin. Apollo circles with Mahal and they tie up. Mahal gets a headlock and the Singhs already celebrate. Apollo powers out but Mahal runs him over with a shoulder. Mahal runs but Apollo gets up, only for Mahal to whip him. Apollo leaps over for the sunset flip, TWO! Backslide, TWO! Apollo rolls Mahal up, TWO! Mahal scrambles away and Alicia tags in. Mahal claims he had this, but Alicia doesn’t care. Vegas fires up for Bayley as she circles with Alicia. Bayley rolls Alicia, TWO! She tries again, ONE! A third time, TWO!
Alicia wants a breather and she bails out of the ring. She reprimands the Singhs and Mahal for not helping out. Alicia wants that 30th spot and vacation, but the Singhs and Mahal remind her she needs to win first. Alicia gets back in the ring, but Bayley gets her with a drop toehold! Bayley wants to put on an abdominal stretch, but Alicia resists. They go around and Bayley gets a facelock. The Singhs say that’s cheating, but Alicia drives Bayley into a corner. Alicia throws forearms then wrenches the arm. She kicks Bayley around then reels her in. Bayley reverses to a cradle, TWO! Bayley gets to a corner and flapjacks Alicia on the buckles! The Singhs coach Alicia up and she tags to Mahal!
Apollo comes in, but Mahal wants him to take it easy. Mahal kicks but Apollo blocks to counter punch. Apollo whips but Mahal hits a body shot. Mahal stomps a mudhole into Apollo, then whips him corner to corner. Apollo goes up and over and handsprings, then leaps over Mahal to hip toss him down. Fans fire up with Apollo and Apollo back flips. He lansd on his feet but walks into a hotshot and big knee! Cover, TWO! Mahal keeps his cool as he drives an elbow into Apollo’s head. He whips Apollo corner to corner hard and Apollo hits the mat. Mahal stomps away but Bayley keeps the Singhs back. Mahal drops knees then grinds Apollo down. The ref counts and Mahal stops at 4. Mahal brings Apollo up in a half nelson chinbar.
Apollo endures as fans rally up, and Apollo fights out. Mahal shoves Apollo and runs him over with an elbow! Cover, TWO! Mahal puts Apollo back in the half nelson, but Apollo endures. Fans rally up and Apollo fights back. Mahal shoves but Apollo kicks back. Apollo runs but into a clobbering clothesline! Mahal pulls back with a camel clutch. Fans rally again but Mahal wrangles Apollo back down. Mahal wrenches back on the chinlock, but Apollo endures. Fans rally up and Apollo gets moving. Apollo arm-drags out and enziguris Mahal down! Both men crawl for their corners, hot tag to Bayley!
Alicia comes in but Bayley rallies! Bayley puts Alicia in a corner for the back elbow, and corner punches! She gets 8, but Alicia slips out. Bayley jumps over to hit a big back suplex! Bayley runs in for the big knee, but Alicia gets to the apron. Alicia bumps Bayley off buckles, but Bayley hotshots her back! Bayley2Belly! Cover, but the Singhs drag Alicia out! The referee reprimands them but Apollo wipes them out with flying clotheslines! Apollo then leaps up again, asai moonsault takes them out again! He feeds Samir to Bayley2Belly! Then the same for Sunil! Bayley fires up but Mahal boots Apollo down! Bayley DIVES on Mahal! She puts Alicia back in, but walks into a boot!! Cover, Mahalicia wins!!
Winners: Jinder Mahal & Alicia Fox, Alicia pinning; advance to the MMC Finals at TLC
The dysfunctional duo makes it work! Granted, they succeeded against teams that had substitute members, such as how Curt Hakwins stepped in for Braun Strowman last week. But a win is a win, and now Mahalicia will represent Raw in the Finals! Who will they face in their shot at the 30th spots and the all-expenses-paid vacation?
Backstage interview with Mahalicia.
Did they ever think this day would come? Of course they did! Mahal meditated and visualized, and he sees himself, Alicia, and the Singhs on the beach. Alicia agrees with winning, but NOT with letting the Singhs joining them. They’re successful because SHE is the Captain! She’s driving this ship into Port Victory, without them! But Asuka comes over, laughing at how Mahalicia thinks they’re gonna win. It doesn’t matter what happened on tonight’s SmackDown, Asuka says she’s gonna win, because her match is next!
The Miz & Asuka VS R-Truth & Carmella!
The Season One champions are on the rocks right now as The Empress doesn’t appreciate The A-Lister trying to take credit for her work. Meanwhile, the fourth seed FABULOUS Truth have put in the work to make it back up from the bottom. Will we see another historic upset from Truth and the Princess of Staten Island?
“Las Vegas, make some noise! What’s up!?” The Miz and Asuka aren’t impressed, and aren’t in the mood for that Dance Break the fans are cheering for. The teams sort out and both Miz and Asuka say “I’ve got this.” Fans are on Asuka’s side. Miz concedes, and Asuka starts with Carmella. But then Miz calls over to tag in. Asuka refuses, because she’s got it. But then she chops him, which counts for a tag! Truth comes in and Asuka is annoyed. Truth rolls Miz up! TWO, but Truth stays on Miz. Miz powers out but Truth runs him over. Truth does his bunny hop dance, then things speed up. Truth holds ropes to do the rest of his dance. Miz runs in but Truth dodges to tilt-o-whirl Miz to a corner. Truth runs in to haymaker Miz. The ref backs Truth up and Miz kicks low.
Miz bumps Truth off buckles, then stomps him. Miz whips corner to corner but Truth goes up and over to dab on ’em! This annoys Miz and he runs back in, but Truth does the splits to dodge, then hip tosses Miz down! Truth clotheslines Miz out, and Carmella comes in, for the DANCE BREAK~! Asuka is furious at Miz while Truth and Carmella floss and twerk. Carmella calls out Asuka, so Asuka shows off her moves on the apron. Miz is annoyed but Truth hip tosses Miz back in! Truth throws hands then climbs up for corner punches. He gets 8 before Miz pushes him away and boots Truth down. Miz chokes Truth on the ropes, then hits his straddle attack. Cover, TWO!
Miz keeps on Truth with a camel clutch but Carmella rallies the fans. Truth gets up and fights back. Miz pulls hair to throw Truth down and deny the tag. Miz stalks Truth, to boot him down! Cover, TWO! Truth survives and Miz argues with the ref. Miz hears the fans rally and say “We Want Asuka!” Miz ignores that but gets rocked by haymakers from Truth! Truth back suplexes but Miz lands out to kick low and hit the basement DDT! Cover, but Carmella breaks it! Carmella goes back to her corner, but then Miz mocks the moonwalk. It wasn’t very good, but Miz stomps Truth down. Miz brings Truth up and uses his It Kicks. Miz winds up but misses, Truth rolls him up! TWO, and Miz clobbers Truth with a clothesline!
Fans rally but Miz grins as he runs corner to corner at Truth. He hits the dropkick, then keeps going to hit another. Miz soaks up the heat before running back in, but Truth clobbers him! Both men are down but fans are fired up. Truth and Miz crawl, hot tag brings in the ladies! Carmella rallies with lariats and a kick. She brings Asuka over for a bump off her boot. Asuka’s down but she dodges the bronco buster to then lift Carmella in a waistlock. Carmella screams and shouts to be let down, so Asuka gently sets Carmella back on her feet. To then lift her back up! Carmella fights out but gets the pop-up knee! Asuka runs, sliding wizard! Cover, TWO!
Carmella survives and Asuka grows frustrated. Miz is also frustrated but Asuka stays on Carmella with knees. Carmella jawbreakers and shoves Asuka away, Miz tags in! Miz goes after Truth but Truth punches him away. Truth rallies with the Lie Detector elbow! Cover, but Asuka breaks it! Carmella throws Asuka into buckles, and tunes up the band. She aims at Miz, but Miz uses Asuka as a shield?! The FABULOUS Kick hits Asuka, then Miz shoves Truth into Carmella before rolling Truth up! TWO!! FABULOUS KICK, to Scissor Kick! Cover, TWO!? Miz lives?! Fans are stunned but loving this!
Asuka throws Carmella out, then Miz dumps Truth out. Miz and Asuka catch their breath, but Asuka locks eyes with Miz. She knows what Miz just did, and he tries to say it wasn’t him. Asuka doesn’t believe Miz, she knows what she saw. Miz is afraid of what she’ll do, and says that they’re still a team. They can still win this together! Okay? No! Asuka fires off on Miz!! Buzzsaw! Miz is rocked, and Asuka ditches him! Truth gives Miz an Unprettier! Cover, Fabulous Truth win!!
Winners: R-Truth & Carmella, Truth pinning; advance to the MMC Finals at TLC
The Season One Champions are no longer in the tournament! The A-Lister made a major mistake thinking he could manipulate the Empress of Tomorrow, and now the FABULOUS Truth capitalize! It will be Truth & Carmella VS Mahal & Alicia at TLC, who wins to become the new Mixed Match Challenge Champions?
Last episode, last time for one of these. Admittedly, we all should’ve known, me especially, that this was not going to end with an amazing match up of top stars in the Finals. The big names like Finn Balor, Braun Strowman, Charlotte Flair, AJ Styles, etc were only in this second MMC to hook fans. WWE needs people to use Facebook Watch because of the deal they made, so that’s why we got great combinations to start. But naturally, it was all bait and switch, considering how those same big names would inevitably end up in more important stories like the titles and grudges we’re getting at TLC. Rest in peace, my dream of Bullet Club leaders and NXT Four Horsewomen members all in one match.
As for the bracket we did get, I knew it was going to end up this way. I thought Apollo was going to be Bayley’s second chance at that 30th spot after Finn had to step down for the sake of his match against Drew McIntyre. Then San Jose could cheer on their hometown girl as she goes against SmackDown’s finalist. However, Mahalicia still wins so that they are the Heels of the Finals. And while I knew Truth & Carmella were going to go in once Asuka ended up in the TLC Triple Threat, I really enjoy how they wrote it for the match. It was only a matter of time before Asuka got fed up with Miz’s ego, and this was the breaking point. Truth and Carmella will certainly benefit the most from being the 30th entrants, even if they aren’t destined to win the Rumbles.