SmackDown heats things up towards Summerslam! Will Becky Lynch defeat Carmella in a non-title match to then earn a title match? And who will face AJ Styles?
All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter
- Andrade “Cien” Almas w/ Zelina Vega VS Rusev w/ Lana; Almas wins.
- R-Truth VS Samoa Joe; Joe wins.
- Asuka VS Billie Kay w/ Peyton Royce; Asuka wins.
- Carmella VS Becky Lynch; Becky wins and will challenge Carmella for the SmackDown Women’s Championship at Summerslam.
- SmackDown Tag Team Championship #1 Contenders Tournament: The New Day VS SAnitY; The New Day win and advance to the finals.
PLAY BY PLAY
A limousine arrives. Who is in it?
It’s The Miz! And Mrs! Yes, the It Couple is back on SmackDown, but that’s not all. Here comes Monroe Sky! The It Family walks into SmackDown as part of their celebration for the Miz And Mrs premiere, complete with a premiere party!
Randy Orton heads to the ring!
The Viper returned at Extreme Rules after Shinsuke Nakamura “defeated” Jeff Hardy, only to add on to the damage. Orton would then attack Hardy during the United States Championship rematch to give the Charismatic Enigma an even worse beating! He promised to explain why, and he’s heard all the theories of the WWE Universe. It’s not unfinished business from the past, it’s not the SmackDown Top Ten. Do we want to know why? “Because of you.” Orton blames the WWE Universe for not appreciating him busting his ass for 16 years. When Orton began his career, who is around now that was then? No one! Orton is WWE’s one constant! He set the table for this generation, yet he gets no respect. Orton doesn’t get the respect he deserves, and why is that?
Is it because he doesn’t flail his arms like some idiot? Is it because he doesn’t change the color of his merch just to rob the fans of their money? Maybe it’s because he competes all year long and not just for Wrestlemania. Or maybe because he doesn’t risk his life doing high spots! Orton isn’t an indie darling, and he isn’t someone who stole a “sweet” hand gesture. He didn’t pay his dues, he learned at the foot of the legends while paying his dues in front of millions! Orton has done everything, from Legend Killer to Viper, but he’s learned how the real legend killer is: “Each and every one of you.”
But Orton won’t let us beat him, he is THE Legend. He will destroy those fans put on a pedestal, starting with Jeff Hardy. Hardy isn’t here tonight, and after Orton is done with him, he’ll never return. Orton vows to end Hardy’s career. Hardy’s career has its twist and turns, but Orton only cares about this final chapter. Call him what you want, but from Apex Predator to Viper to Legend Killer, the only real name he’s ever needed are the three most devastating letters in wrestling: R K O. He drops the mic and takes his leave, but will he fulfill his mission of eliminating Hardy?
SmackDown recaps the historic announcement.
Nights like last night on Monday Night Raw happen thanks to everyone, from the male superstars to female superstars to the WWE Universe. In another first-time-ever, WWE announced the first-ever All Women’s PPV event, WWE Evolution! This moment is built on the passion and work of the Women’s Division and the WWE Universe that supports it. Mark your calendars for October 28th to see the fruition of this Women’s (R)Evolution.
Andrade “Cien” Almas w/ Zelina Vega VS Rusev w/ Lana!
An argument between the strong women standing beside El Idolo and the Bulgarian Brute has stemmed into a match. Which man will prove themselves the better man in this first ever encounter?
The fans are strongly behind Rusev Day while the bell rings. Rusev corners Almas, then backs off. They circle but Almas kicks low. Almas puts on a headlock, but Rusev suplexes. Almas lands on his feet and speeds things up, but Rusev runs him over. Rusev runs and things speed up again, and Rusev anticipates Almas’ backdrop. Rusev throws him at the ropes, but Almas goes tranquilo, with Vega joining in underneath!
Almas has to bail out when Rusev rushes him. Rusev slips out the side and chases Almas into the ring. Almas kicks but Rusev blocks to clobber him down! Rusev keeps on Almas as fans chant “Rusev Day!” He suplexes, covers, ONE. Rusev brings Lana up to join him in a Rusev Day chant. Almas meanwhile slips out to rest his back while Vega barks orders, and we go picture in picture.
Vega tells Almas to get back in the ring while Lana gives Rusev a high-five. Almas returns but Rusev is on him with stomps. Rusev drags Almas around for an elbow drop, then another elbow on the run. Almas crwals to a corner but Rusev stalks him. Rusev whips him corner to corner, but misses and runs into a post! Almas capitalizes with the hanging armbar! Almas lets go at 4, then stomps Rusev to a corner. He stomps a mudhole, then walks it off at 4. Almas comes back for more stomps, but teh ref backs him off. Almas doesn’t stay back for long, as he pulls on Rusev’s arm through ropes. He then dropkicks Rusev out of the ring, and Vega says to keep on him. Almas obeys but walks into Rusev’s kick! They brawl on the outside and end up back inside to keep brawling.
Almas stomps Rusev down, then goes after the arm. Rusev endures, which frustrates Vega. Rusev hits back, to Lana’s liking, but Almas brings Rusev back down in the armlock. Almas wrenches on that arm, but Rusev powers his way back up. He pushes Almas down and gets a ropebreak. Almas lets go and Rusev backs off to a corner. Almas is on him with chops! El Idolo whips but Rusev reverses, only to run into a back elbow and inverted tornado DDT! Cover, TWO, but Almas goes back after the arm. Almas sits on the armlock whiel we return to single picture. Rusev hits back again with sharp chops and clubbing forearms. He arm-drags out and throws more hands. Rusev blocks to counter punch, then punches more. Almas knees low, then runs, but into a roundhouse! And another!
Rusev runs in corner to corner for a big shoulder tackle. He keeps going for the spin kick! Fans fire up for Rusev while Vega panics. But Rusev runs into Almas’ boot! Almas runs, but into a pop-up knee and another roundhouse! Cover, TWO! Rusev isn’t frustrated yet, because he can tell Vega is afraid for Almas. Fans rally up and Rusev stomps his feet. Rusev takes aim, but ALmas dodges the kick to chop! That only angers Rusev! Almas slaps him, which only makes it worse. Rusev fires off elbows! Rusev shoves Amlas but gets a boot. Almas goes for the DT but Rusev denies it. Almas runs for the feint to elbow! Rusev is down, Vega is shouting “KNEES!” but it’s a MACHKA KICK instead! Rusev can’t cover, he’s too tired. A 10 count begins while fans rally up.
Lana and Vega shout at their men, but then shout at each other. The ladies get into it, Vega SLAPS Lana! LANA CRUSH with that tackle! Aiden English appears to stop this cat fight! But he only ends up sandwiched in the middle, knocking Lana down! Rusev questions what’s going on, and English does his best to explain. Almas takes advantage, HAMMERLOCK DDT! Cover, Almas wins!
Winner: Andrade “Cien” Almas, by pinfall
El Idolo benefits from The Drama King’s mistakes! If there wasn’t reason for Rusev to be upset with English before, there is now. Can English ever make it up to Mr. & Mrs. Machka? Or can he consider his friendship with them a thing of the past?
R-Truth gets a pep talk.
His first match since Wrestlemania, and it’s against Samoa Joe. Tye Dillinger saw what happened to himself last week, right? Oh, no, he passed out first. But The Perfect Ten says Truth doesn’t need a bed or a pillow, because he ain’t going to sleep. He’ll give Joe the Truth, the whole Truth, and nothing but the Truth in their match! But will that be enough to stay free of the Destroyer’s clutches?
Lana and Aiden English argue.
English did what he did for their sake, but they aren’t taking his calls! Enough! Maybe neither English nor Lana is good for Team Rusev Day. Rusev has put his foot down, but what’s going to happen to his holiday?
R-Truth VS Samoa Joe!
You could get with this, or you could get with that, but do you really want a match with the Samoan Submission Machine? Truth has no choice but to take one. Does he have a chance of surviving Joe’s wrath?
The bell rings and Joe goes right at Truth! He gives knees and elbows, but Truth ducks the clothesline to calf kick! Truth runs in for a BIG splash! Truth keeps going, and hits the spinning elbow! Joe is rocked while Truth is fired up, but he misses the scissor kick. Joe headbutts, but then misses in a corner. Truth runs in, to Joe’s yurinagi! Joe grabs Truth, Coquina Clutch! Truth taps, Joe wins!
Winner: Samoa Joe, by submission
Joe holds on until he says Truth has had enough. The Destroyer destroys another opponent in another quick match. With the WWE Championship #1 Contender not yet named, is Joe on GM Paige’s short list to face AJ Styles?
Backstage interview with Asuka.
The Empress of Tomorrow is just one of many excited for WWE Evolution in October. She’s so ready for this! But tonight, Billie Kay learns she’s NOT ready for Asuka. Will one half of the IIconics find themselves kneeling before the Empress once again?
Asuka VS Billie Kay w/ Peyton Royce!
This isn’t the first time the Empress and the IIconics have met, given their time in NXT together. But given Asuka is no longer undefeated, will this latest encounter still go the way as all the others have?
The bell rings, and Billie is just as confident as Carmella that she’s better than Asuka. But that only angers Asuka, as she grabs Billie’s arm. Billie knees low then arm-drags Asuka. Cover, ONE, but Billie rakes and claws Asuka’s face! Billie pushes Asuka around, but Asuka only gets mad again. Billie gets scared, and runs, but only for Asuka to dropkick her! Asuka whips for the opp-up knee, then runs for the Shining Wizard! Cover, TWO! Peyton calls Billie over, but she can only hold on while Asuka gets an ankle lock! Asuka reels Billie in for a waistlock but Billie bucks her off. Billie’s boot misses, but Asuka’s kicks down! Buzzsaw! Cover, Asuka wins!
Winner: Asuka, by pinfall
The Empress is back up with that win. With Carmella still champion, and Becky poised to be the #1 contender, when and where will Asuka get her chance to reign once again?
Shinsuke Nakamura speaks.
Jeff Hardy was so close, but the King of Strong Style is still United States Champion. “Jeff, do you hear me?” Poor guy, he’s been bitten by a Viper. But Nakamura warns Orton, too, that Nakamura bites back.
SmackDown General Manager, Paige, is in the ring!
She starts by saying she has so much fun being the GM for the blue brand. She’s also very excited for the chance her women have at stealing the show at WWE Evolution. And she’s also excited because she’ll get to see Hall of Famers, Trish Stratus and Lita, return alongside the other superstars of past, present and future! Plus, we’re riding into the biggest show of the summer: Summerslam. So it’s time for her to announce the newest challenger for THE WWE Championship, and its owner, AJ Styles! The Phenomenal One makes his entrance and joins Paige in the ring.
Fans cheer for Styles, and Paige encourages her champion to soak it in. Styles lets the fans know they’re awesome, and wants to tell them that as a husband and father, when he heard about WWE Evolution, the first person he thought of was his daughter. “Baby, you want it bad enough, go out and get it” because there’s nothing she can’t do. Styles is proud to work for this company.
And speaking of being proud, Styles is proud to defend the most prestigious title in both the WWE and the entire world of wrestling, at the event of the summer, Summerslam. Summerslam was the event that built the foundation of the House that AJ Styles Built, when he and John Cena burned the house down and where he and Kevin Owens had an amazing match of their own. With that said, Styles signs the contract. So who is his opponent? Drum roll please. Styles will face… James Ellsworth!?
The Chinless Wonder reintroduces himself: J to the Izames, E to the Izworth, #EllsworthIsExcellence. And he’s gonna tell the Phenomenal One and the WWE Universe that the real reason he’s back is that title. After all, Ellsworth has beaten Styles three times! And like they say, the fourth time’s the charm. No, no one says that. Well they will after Ellsworth wins again. Styles is shocked and scared, Ellsworth can tell. Ellsworth will make it quick with a wham bam, hot damn, new champ at Summerslam! Paige corrects Ellsworth. “Just stop it.” What’s he even doing out here? He’s a joke. A joke? No, Paige, you’re the joke! What is she even saying with that accent? And her wardrobe.
Now now, we don’t make fun of people around here. Well he does. Just look at her, she’s pale as a ghost! Paige gets serious now as she walks up to him. She’s got two words for him. No, not “Suck it”. “YOU’RE FIRED!” Ellsworth just got McMahon’d by Paige! Security, take him away! Fans chant “Yes! Yes!” as Ellsworth is hauled away, kicking and screaming. Paige walks with security all the way to the exit as they carry the cranky Ellsworth. They set him down in front of the door, and Paige kicks him through it!
But wait, Samoa Joe attacks in the ring! He puts Styles in a Coquina Clutch!! Styles is out cold, and Joe signs his name! Was he who Paige was going to name? Or has he just made himself the #1 contender on his own? He throws the table down on Styles, but will this declaration stand?
Samoa Joe encounters Paige backstage.
Paige wanted Joe to be Styles’ opponent because he’s unpredictable, but not like this! Well too bad, that is Joe being unpredictable. Paige’s plan was pedestrian, but Joe plans to be Phenomenal. Paige is beside herself as JOe storms off. But Carmella comes in and protests Ellsworth being fired. If Mella is Money, buy a new boyfriend. Hate on Carmella all you want, but she’s still SmackDown’s Women’s Champion. And it’ll stay that way all the way to Evolution. This marquee match with Becky Lynch? Not gonna happen. Carmella’s beaten Charlotte twice and Asuka twice, so Becky’s next.
Carmella VS Becky Lynch!
The FABULOUS Princess is fired up after losing her lap dog, but will she get burned up by the Lass Kicker’s straight fire? And if so, will Becky take this momentum all the way to a Summerslam championship rematch?
The bell rings, and the two circle. Becky lunges in and gets a waistlock, to then arm-drag Carmella. She wants her submission but Carmella freaks out. Carmella gets the ropebreak, and Becky lets go. They circle again, and Becky wants another try. Carmella rolls her up. TWO, so she throws a strong right hand and then throws Becky down. Cover, but Becky slips out. Things speed up and Becky hits Carmella with a flying forearm. Carmella bails out but Becky pursues, with an apron forearm! Down goes Carmella, but Becky brings her back up. Carmella crawls away and back out the ring, then dodges the dropkick to throw Becky into barriers! The Princess is in control while we go picture in picture.
Carmella trash talks the fans while going back into the ring. She waits on the 10 count while Becky stirs. Becky slowly stands, but staggers over. She beats the count at 9 but Carmella is on her with hammering fists! Cover, TWO, and Carmella is frustrated. She wraps Becky in a thrashing chinlock, then slows down to grind Becky into the mat. Becky gets up but Carmella wrangles her back down! Carmella squeezes and wrenches Becky’s neck, but Becky fights back again. Becky shoves Carmella but Carmella comes back with a tilt-o-whirl headscissor! Carmella runs at Becky in the corner but misses, and gets Becky’s jump kick instead. Becky then picks up Carmella, but Carmella slips out to bring Becky down by her hair. Cover, TWO, but Carmella slaps Becky around while we return to single picture.
Carmella grinds Becky’s face into the mat while she screams “I’m the champion! Not you!” She kicks Becky, but Becky hits back! Both women are down, but fans rally up. They both stand, and they brawl with big forearms. Carmella fires off a few, but Becky fires off even more! Becky headbutts and lariats Carmella. Becky rallies, mule kicks and European Uppercuts! She grabs Carmella, but Carmella counters to a complete shot! Cover, TWO! Carmella drags Becky up by her hair, and brings her over to a corner. She climbs up, but Becky counters the tornado DDT with a Becksploder! Becky runs in but is put on the apron. She knocks Carmella away, then climbs up, but Carmella trips her up. Carmella comes back, SUPER STEINER! Cover, TWO!
Carmella can’t believe Becky’s still in this, but she keeps her eyes on the inaugural SmackDown Women’s Champion. She throws in her kick but Becky deflects it, to then go after the arm. Carmella sends Becky into buckles, then rolls up, with ropes! TWO!! Becky manages to deny the cheat! And Carmella is furious, to say the least. Carmella stalks Becky more, but that kick is denied again. Becky hits the enziguri! Both women are down again, but Becky is getting up. Becky climbs up top, but misses the leg drop! FABULOUS Kick! Cover, TWO!! Now Carmella is really shocked. She drags Becky over, but ends up in the Disarm-Her!! Carmella taps, Becky wins!!
Winner: Becky Lynch, by submission; will challenge Carmella for the SmackDown Women’s Championship at Summerslam
“Becky Balboa” has done it! She’s beaten the champ here tonight, and now she has a chance to do it all again, for the title. Will Brooklyn bring the Blue Brand’s belt back to Becky?
The Bludgeon Brothers speak.
Harper & Rowan know four team will fight, but there will be no winner. Only punishment. These four teams can destroy each other, but they will all face the same fate: “A bludgeoning!”
SmackDown Tag Team Championship #1 Contenders Tournament: The New Day VS SAnitY!
Awwwww~ Indiana! Don’t you dare be sour, clap for world famous four time champs, and feel~ the power~! This rematch of positivity and chaos will send one team into this mini-tournament’s finals, but which team will it be?
The Usos are on commentary now, as they will be in this tournament. Their opponents, The Bar, return next week for their match, but Jimmy & Jey look to scout future opponents already.
Xavier Woods & Big E represent New Day while Alexander Wolfe & Killian Dain represent SAnitY. Woods and Wolfe start and tie up. Wolfe gets a headlock, but Woods powers out. Wolfe runs Woods over, then runs again. Woods speeds things up and slides under to hit a roaring elbow! Cover, ONE, but Woods keeps on Wolfe. He wrenches the arm, then whips Wolfe, but Wolfe reverses. Wolfe runs into a boot, but Eric Young distracts. Woods Honor Rolls, but into a German Suplex! Wolfe tags in Big Damo, and sets Woods up for a big boot. The Beast of Belfast drags Woods up but Woods fires off haymakers. Damo shoves him to SAnitY’s corner but get a mule kick. He still picks Woods up for the Wasteland slam to big back senton! SAnitY has control while we go to break.
SmackDown returns and Damo has Woods on the top rope. He climbs up to join Woods, but Woods resists. Woods fights back, clubbing away on Damo’s big back! Damo staggers away, and Woods hits a big missile dropkick! Fans rally up while both men crawl for their corners. Hot tags to Wolfe & Big E! Big E throws Wolfe with an overhead suplex, then another, then a side belly2belly! Big E swivels those hips, then runs, but Eric Young disrupts the splash. Kofi flies in, but gets caught by Damo! Woods suddenly barrels in with a cannonball off the steps! Down goes Damo, but Big E runs into a boot from Wolfe. Wolfe and Young coordinate, but Young isn’t part of this match! Kofi pushes Young down, then Woods tags Big E! Big E scoops Wolfe, Woods up top, MIDNIGHT HOUR! Cover, The New Day wins!
Winners: The New Day, Woods pinning; advance to the tournament finals
Positivity wins over chaos this time, but now things get serious. The Usos approach the ring, but Sheamus & Cesaro make their return now! The Celtic Gladiator & Swiss Cyborg speak. Did you miss them? Because they didn’t miss anyone here. But they did miss being champions. The Bar vows to beat the Usos, then The New Day, then Harper & Rowan at Summerslam. Because they don’t just set the bar, they ARE the Bar! Will the in-ring return of the former Raw Tag Team Champions turn into the first step to becoming SmackDown Tag Team Champions?
Paige meets with The It Family backstage.
Miz wants to know about the babysitter Paige promised. She presents Sin Cara! He wears a mask. Well, yeah, he’s a luchador. In that case, Miz is going to introduce the “cutest baby ever” to the WWE Universe. Yes, Monroe Sky will join her parents in the premiere party! Guess Sin Cara got those diapers for nothing now…
The Miz & Mrs Premiere Party begins!
The It Family heads to the ring to celebrate their new reality show, which debuts on the USA Network after SmackDown tonight. The bouncers let them through the velvet rope, and the It Parents carefully bring Monroe Sky through the ring ropes. Miz calmly welcomes the WWE Universe to the most must-see moment in history. Last week, we mourned the passing of Team Hell No, but this week, we celebrate Miz & Maryse! Miz has been so lucky to share the spotlight with his beautiful wife and mother of the century, Maryse herself. Maryse thanks Miz, and with WWE Evolution on the horizon, “let’s face it,” it all started with her. This evolution continues because of the premiere episode of Miz & Mrs. If you think you know comedy, drama and entertainment, you haven’t seen anything yet.
The WWE Universe should be honored to be in the presence of the stars, especially the “little scene stealer”, the infant who has already accomplished more than Daniel Bryan, THE Monroe Sky! The fans chant for baby Monroe, but she’s fallen asleep, hearing the name Daniel Bryan. Please be quiet. They don’t stay quiet, and that upsets Miz. But that’s fine, let’s skip to a special sneak-peek of the series! The trailer plays, and it also recaps Miz’s early WWE career. The time he came off very awkward and obnoxious, especially while trying to court Maryse. And let’s not forget all the times he’s lost…
Daniel Bryan appears on the titantron! Wow, that show looks great! But that footage, sorry, Bryan didn’t mean for that to happen. Bryan says he’s sorry. No wait, why is he saying it back here? He should say it in the ring! So here comes Bryan! Security stops him at the velvet rope, but Bryan fights his way through! He knocks one guy down, then throws the other into barriers. Bryan throws the other guard into barriers, then gently unhooks the velvet rope. He heads into the ring, but Miz & Maryse beg he not do this with Monroe in the ring. But then surprise! It was a doll the entire time! Miz boots Bryan then drops him with a Skull Crushing Finale!
Miz knew Bryan was going to try to steal his spotlight! It always has to be about Bryan! But yes, this was the greatest ruse ever. That baby wasn’t Monroe, but an actor! Miz would never bring his real daughter to a city like Indiana. If you want to see the real Monroe Sky, watch Miz & Mrs, because it will be… AWWWWESOOOME~! The reality show premiers in mere seconds, but will Miz’s real reality be ruined when Bryan comes back for more revenge?
SmackDown not only did better than Raw (again) but it went by so fast! Part of that is the picture-in-picture commercial coverage, which is something Raw could try to use for at least their main events. There was also just a lot done better here. Their relating of the All-Women’s PPV news was done better, as it was integrated into Asuka’s promo, the IIconic’s selfie video, and even that argument Paige and Carmella had after Paige fired Ellsworth. Raw’s flaw was overdoing the use of a recap package without really bringing any of the women in to react to it, so SmackDown learned from that. Asuka wins to get back on track while she heads for WWE Evolution like most of the women. Billie & Peyton still do great in their role, too, but obviously they’ll come into play more with the coming Women’s Tag Division.
Randy Orton gives a good but standard Heel promo for just after a turn. He blames the fans and the superstars we like more than him, but we all can be sure Orton will do better in the ring with Hardy than on the mic. Nakamura seems to want in on this, too, so I’m still sensing a Triple Threat for the United States Championship at Summerslam. Rusev VS Almas was a solid opener, but now we see a logical way for Rusev Day to question if they’re keeping English around. I can’t be sure if English going solo or joining someone else is the better choice, but at least it won’t be Rusev turning on him and kicking him out.
Ellsworth does great in making us all want him to go away, and that’s what happens as he gets “fired”. Joe’s attack on Styles was great, Joe VS Styles will be great. I just hope Ellsworth doesn’t interfere as his revenge. Or that if he does, Joe makes sure to choke him out before he can do anything to ruin the finish. I’m glad Becky wins this match tonight, and I hope she wins at Summerslam in an even better match. Though, if I’m to get my WWE Four Horsewomen Tag Title match at WWE Evolution, I guess she’ll have to drop it to someone on the way, such as to Asuka in Hell in a Cell. I hope The New Day wins the tournament to get another go against Harper & Rowan to win the belts back. My alternate would be The Bar, because they haven’t faced Harper & Rowan.
That ending segment with the premiere party was great. I could tell all along Miz didn’t bring out Monroe Sky, so I’m glad they used the fake baby as a way to punk out Bryan. I still feel the baby they had just before coming out was Monroe Sky, but who can say. Miz VS Bryan needs to happen at Summerslam, it just makes sense. And even just watching a few minutes of Miz & Mrs, you get a great sense of the real Miz & Maryse, so I wouldn’t be surprised that he turns Face after Bryan makes him tap out. Miz can then go up against Heels like Nakamura or even Almas, to finally give us that Strong Styles VS Soft Style we were hoping for a year ago when Bryan was still GM, just with the Face-Heel dynamics reversed.
My Score: 8.5/10
Mitchell’s NJPW AXS Results: Wrestling Dontaku 2019 Part 2!
AXS wraps Wrestling Dontaku with TWO HOURS!
It’s the AXS finale of NJPW Wrestling Dontaku 2019!
AXS and NJPW give us TWO hours and two championship matches! Jeff Cobb defends the NEVER Openweight Championship while Kazuchika Okada defends the IWGP Heavyweight Championship!
Coverage of NJPW Wrestling Dontaku 2019 will be as broadcast by AXS TV.
Gifs can be found on http://frentique.tumblr.com/
- NEVER Openweight Championship: Jeff Cobb VS Taichi; Taichi wins and becomes the new NEVER Openweight Champion.
- EVIL VS Tomohiro Ishii; Ishii wins.
- IWGP Heavyweight Championship: Kazuchika Okada VS SANADA; Okada wins and retains the IWGP Heavyweight Championship.
PLAY BY PLAY
NJPW and AXS set the scene for this epic Wrestling Dontaku 2019 finale!
“Legacies will be defined” as The Rainmaker pushes past redemption and moves on to reestablish himself. It was through the 2019 New Japan Cup that Kazuchika Okada earned another chance at the IWGP Heavyweight Champion and Jay White, and it was at G1 Supercard that he took that title back! The now five-time champion keeps his promise of giving Cold Skull Sanada the first shot! The story of Okada and Sanada goes back to Sanada’s debut in 2016, in which he attacked Okada on Los Ingobernables de Japon leader Tetsuya Naito’s behalf. Sanada has climbed the ranks in the singles division, but is this the night he finally proves he is worthy? Or will Okada continue to prove he’s on another level?
Meanwhile, the Stone Pitbull and the King of Darkness have recently renewed a rivalry. They teamed with Okada and Sanada in a tag team match on the first night, and it went Evil’s way when put Tomohiro Ishii in the Scorpion Deathlock, a move copied from Ishii’s mentor! However, it was the referee who called the match for the sake of Ishii’s well-being, Ishii did not submit. Will Evil finally make Ishii give in? Or will Ishii get revenge for Evil adding insult to injury?
NEVER Openweight Championship: Jeff Cobb VS Taichi!
The Hawaiian Hulk has a title belt in both ROH and NJPW! But that only means more work for the Olympic wrestler, and that includes facing the Sliest Wrestler in the World, backed by Suzuki-Gun! Will all the tricks in Taichi’s book amount to nothing against the colossal cross-promotion champion?
The introductions are made, the belt is presented, and the dramatic Taichi takes his time removing his entrance gear. Miho Abe takes care of his coat but Cobb makes sure Taichi puts his knapsack down, too. Taichi does, the bell rings, and we begin!
Cobb and Taichi slowly circle. Taichi goes back to his corner to have Miho fix his hair. Cobb grows annoyed but Taichi is in the corner so he can’t be touched. They circle but then Taichi bails out to regroup with Miho, Taka Michinoku and Kanemaru. Taichi takes his time returning, all to troll Cobb. Miho gets on the apron to be a distraction, and Taichi gets in from behind! He clubs Cobb, but it only annoys Cobb more! Cobb kicks Taichi then CHOPS him! Cobb CHOPS Taichi more, but Taichi rakes the eyes! Taichi whips but Cobb reverses and things speed up. Cobb hurdles and dropkicks Taichi! Fans applaud Cobb’s agility while Taichi bails out. Cobb builds speed, but Taichi uses Miho as a shield!
Fans boo but Cobb bails out. Cobb tells Taichi to man up but Taichi still “cowers” behind Miho. Red Shoes reprimands Taichi, but he doesn’t see Kanemaru attack Cobb from behind! Kanemaru’s forearms do more to Cobb than Taichi’s. But Cobb whips Kanemaru into railing! And he throws forearms on him! Taichi uses his mic stand on Cobb! Taichi chokes Cobb while Red Shoes is down. Red Shoes gets up with help from a Young Lion, and stops Taichi. Taichi whips Cobb into railing then brings him to NJPW commentary. He bounces Cobb off the announce desks then chokes him with cables! Taichi leaves Cobb behind long enough to take the NEVER Openweight belt. Taichi holds it up as if it’s already his. Fans boo and Red Shoes shakes his head.
Cobb drags himself up and gets in the ring before a count begins, but Taichi stomps away on him. Taichi stands on Cobb’s back and head, but lets up at Red Shoes’ count. Taichi smirks as he stands Cobb up to choke him into a corner! Red Shoes counts again but Taichi lets up, only to grind Cobb’s face on ropes. Taichi smirks more as he rakes Cobb’s face! He stops at Red Shoes’ count but then brings Cobb up for a snapmare and swift kick. Cobb only gets mad and stands back up. Cobb throws big forearms on Taichi! Taichi mule kicks Cobb away, then runs in for a big corner clothesline. Taichi keeps moving, but Cobb dodges. Cobb wants a belly2belly but Taichi rakes the eyes! Taichi runs, but into a scoop to suplex! Cobb puts Taichi on the top rope, to CHOP him.
Cobb adjusts and climbs to join Taichi. Taichi holds on but Cobb gets up for a stalling SUPERPLEX! Taichi bounces up from momentum alone then flounders to a corner. Cobb slowly stands and gets himself to a corner while Taichi slowly sits up. Cobb runs in but Taichi dodges. Taichi misses his kick but Cobb chops and clotheslines with no wasted motion! Cobb whips corner to corner then runs in for a BIG elbow! Cobb fireman’s carries Taichi for a Samoan Drop! “Gochimuchi” Moonsault but Taichi dodges! Taichi kicks but misses and Cobb waistlocks. Taichi elbows free but Cobb shoves. Cobb runs but misses in the corner, Taichi hits his enziguri! Taichi brings Cobb in, but he can’t lift Cobb! He kicks away on Cobb’s face, then tries again, but that doesn’t change anything! Cobb back drops Taichi instead!
Taichi wrenches and hook kicks Cobb! Taichi hits the buzzsaw! Cover, TWO!! Cobb is tougher than that, so Taichi focuses his power. Off come the pants! Taichi aims and kicks, but Cobb deflects to hit back with a big right. Taichi kicks but it barely bothers Cobb. Neither does the next kick or the next kick. If anything, Cobb starts liking it. Cobb forearms Taichi and dares him to come back. He throws more forearms, and Taichi falls to his knees. Cobb dares Taichi to stand, and Taichi fires himself up. Taichi kicks away on Cobb’s chest, but Cobb blocks and brings Taichi in for a Fall Away Slam! Cobb runs as fans rally, but Taichi dodges to mule kick! But Cobb forearms back, so Taichi enziguris! Both men are down but fans are fired up!
Miho, Taka and Kanemaru coach up Taichi but the fans rally behind Cobb. Taichi grabs Cobb for a dragon sleeper, but Cobb powers out. Cobb arm-drags Taichi off, then scoops him for- No, Taichi gets out of the Tour for a BIG saido suplex! Taichi drags Cobb up again, dragon sleeper and armlock, but Cobb endures the “stretch bar.” Cobb reaches but Taichi cranks back. Fans rally again but Taichi shifts to a cover, TWO!! Cobb still has life and Taichi grows frustrated. Taichi stands Cobb up and brings him up in an Alabama lift. But Cobb is just too much! Cobb clubs Taichi and gut wrench suplexes! He holds on and rolls to bring him up for another! Cobb still holds on, for a PILEDRIVER! Cobb can’t cover, he’s too tired!
Fans rally as both men are down! Cobb stirs but goes the wrong way. Miho panics and almost cries for Taichi but it’s Cobb who slowly stands up. Fans duel as Cobb drags Taichi back up. Taichi is dead weight but Cobb gets him up and whips him, but Taichi boots! Taichi is alive and whips, but Cobb reverses to the Athletic Plex! Cobb drags Taichi up, throws him, but Taichi holds ropes. Taichi boots and roundhouses! And rabbit ax bombers to another enziguri! Both men are down again, and it’s Taichi who can’t make a cover! Taichi revives and fires up! He takes aim at Cobb, who staggers over. Superkick blocked, for a Tour- No, Taichi escapes, but gets a LARIAT! GACHIMUCHI! And then, a Tour of the- No, roll up! TWO!!
Taichi pushes Red Shoes to LOW BLOW Cobb! Chicken wing cradle, TWO!! Not even a kick to the balls can stop Cobb! But Taichi aims, SUPERKICK!! Then Alabama lift, BLACK MEPHISTO!! Cover, Taichi wins!!
Winner: Taichi, by pinfall; NEW NEVER Openweight Champion
For the second time ever, the Sliest Wrestler holds this belt! And most surprisingly, he barely had to cheat! Cobb is no longer champion in both ROH and NJPW, but will Cobb be back for a rematch?
EVIL VS Tomohiro Ishii!
Again, the Stone Pitbull did not submit to the Scorpion Deathlock as put on by the King of Darkness. However, he was still trapped in it with no way out. Will Ishii fall for that trap again? Or will he have an escape plan this time?
NJPW returns after the entrances and we get right to the bell!
Evil and Ishii collide, then collide, then collide. Ishii runs and bumps Evil, who comes back on the rebound, but so does Ishii! They just keep ramming into each other! Evil and Ishii each fire up as the fans fire up. Evil throws a forearm but Ishii gives it back, and repeat. They go back and forth like this, fast and furious, and the fans rally up with them! The brawl keeps going, forearm for forearm, elbow for elbow! Evil gets rocked and Ishii keeps on him. Ishii runs but into Evil’s elbow! Evil runs but they go shoulder to shoulder again! They both run, and they both collide! Evil finally knocks Ishii down!
Fans cheer while Evil catches his breath and Ishii writhes. Evil drags Ishii up to toss him out. Evil follows to club away, then whip into barriers! Ishii hits the floor but Evil doesn’t let up. Evil brings Ishii up to throw into the post! You could hear that *BING* of head hitting metal! Evil stomps Ishii then drags him back up to throw back into railing. He puts Ishii’s leg through the rails to kick! Ishii hobbles as the ring count passes 15! Evil puts Ishii in at 17 and fans cheer. Evil stomps the leg now, but Ishii eggs him on! So Evil slams the leg and puts on a toehold. Ishii endures while pulling Evil’s hair. Evil pulls back on the leg and ankle, but Ishii drags himself to a ropebreak. Red Shoes counts and Evil lets go.
Evil looms over Ishii but Ishii throws body shots. Ishii chops but it doesn’t hurt. Evil CHOPS Ishii and he staggers back! Ishii chops but Evil CHOPS! They keep going back and forth, Ishii’s chop meeting Evil’s CHOP! Ishii fires off many chops but Evil just needs one double hand CHOP to floor Ishii! Evil keeps on that leg, clearly preparing for the Scorpion Deathlock. He puts it on, but Ishii resists being turned over! Ishii slaps Evil so Evil chokes and CHOPS Ishii. Ishii just takes the chops and stands up. He wobbles over to Evil to fire off forearms, but Evil kicks the bad leg out. Evil whips Ishii to a corner but Ishii comes back with a clothesline! However, Ishii hobbles, showing that Evil’s plan is working.
Evil stands but Ishii CHOPS him in a corner. Ishii CHOPS and forearms and repeats. He whips corner to corner but Evil reverses to forearm, only to run into a powerslam! Both men are down but Ishii’s up first. Ishii drags Evil up but Evil resists the back suplex with elbows. Evil brings Ishii towards a corner but Ishii rams his shoulder in! And again and again! Ishii runs back in but into a boot, only to clothesline Evil anyway! Fans rally both ways as Ishii gets his back and legs moving. Ishii drags Evil up and hoists him onto the top rope. Ishii climbs up to join Evil, but Evil resists. Evil holds onto the crossbars so Ishii headbutts him! Ishii lifts Evil for the SUPERPLEX! He crawls to a cover, TWO!
Fans rally up as Ishii stands. Ishii wants Evil to stand, then he runs, but Evil boots the lariat and blocks the other. He passes Ishii’s kick to Red Shoes to mule kick Ishii’s leg! Evil suplexes Ishii into buckles! The Pitbull bails out of the ring but Evil pursues. Evil goes under the ring and tosses chairs around. Ishii hits back and brings Evil over. Evil blocks the suplex, but Ishii still tries. Evil suplexes to put Ishii on the rails, Anarchy Suplex! Almost a Magic Killer! Evil gets back up and grabs one of those chairs. He puts one around Ishii’s head and has the other! Red Shoes runs out to reprimand Evil but Evil shoves him away! Evil then swings and SMACKS the chair off around Ishii’s head! The Pitbull goes down while we go to break.
NJPW returns again as Evil drags Ishii up. Fans cheer as Evil wants to end this in the ring. Evil rallies the fans and takes aim at Ishii. He runs corner to corner and hits a BIG corner clothesline! Evil roars while Ishii flops to the mat. Evil drags Ishii up for a suplex and he puts Ishii on the top rope. Now Evil joins Ishii up there but Red Shoes is worried. Evil stands Ishii up, for a SUPERPLEX of his own! He crawls to a cover, TWO!! Ishii’s far tougher than that, so Evil goes after the legs! Scorpion Deathlock! Ishii endures this hold all over again, but he also powers up! He crawls himself towards the ropes but Evil sits down deeper! Fans rally as Ishii powers up again. Ishii crawls again, but Evil sits back down.
Ishii grabs at Red Shoes to keep himself from tapping, and then he gets the ropebreak! Evil lets go and wipes the sweat from his brow. Evil looms over Ishii and drags him back up. He lifts Ishii but Ishii slips out. Ishii waistlocks but Evil elbows out. Ishii swings but Evil dodges to waistlock, only for Ishii to swing again, which Evil again dodges. Evil swings but Ishii blocks, and Ishii waistlocks only for Evil to elbow out. Evil swings again, but into Ishii’s back suplex! Both men are down but fans fire up again. Evil goes after the legs again with elbows to the knee. But Ishii eggs him on! Evil mule kicks the knee but Ishii fires off forearms. Evil ROCKS Ishii with that right!
Fans rally as Ishii falls to his knees, but Evil runs. Ishii blocks a clothesline with a clothesline, then runs. Evil runs from the corner, but Ishii sees it coming and clotheslines him down! Ishii grits his teeth while fans are thunderous. He puts Evil in the Scorpion Deathlock! Evil endures the move now as Ishii sits down deep! Evil powers his way over, but Ishii cranks back harder! But Evil still gets the ropebreak! Ishii lets go and is frustrated, but he doesn’t let up. He goes after Evil again, dragging him up by his singlet. Ishii goes after a leg with a knee jammer! Evil fights off the shin breaker, then spins, but into Ishii’s elbows from all sides! Evil spins again but into another big forearm! Ishii sits Evil up for the sliding lariat! Cover, TWO!!
Fans are thunderous all over again as Ishii stands Evil up. Ishii suplexes, but Evil knees out. Evil shoves and German Suplexes! But Ishii’s up to clobber Evil! Evil headbutts and LARIATS back! Ishii flounders but Evil is up again. Evil wants another and runs, and LARIATS again! Cover, TWO!! Ishii still lives! The fans are at a fever pitch as Evil catches his breath. Evil slashes the throat to say it’s over. He drags Ishii up, spins, but Ishii slips out! Evil spins Ishii again, but Ishii gets a waistlock and German Suplex! But now Evil’s up in an instant! Only to run into Ishii’s LARIAT! ONE?! Evil hits another lariat! Then lariats collide! Both men fall over! Red Shoes checks on both men but they’re somehow okay to continue.
Fans rally up and gives both men new life. Ishii and Evil stand, and head for each other. They collide with clotheslines again, and stagger on weak legs. Evil and Ishii run and collide yet again! Evil roars and runs, but Ishii tanks the clotheslines! Ishii headbutts then forearms then headbutts Evil again! Evil falls to a knee but Ishii stands him back up, only for Evil to hook the arm! Ishii spins Evil around but Evil spins out of the full nelson to suplex Ishii! Ishii knees free and spins Evil, only for Evil to get him with a Half ‘n’ Half Suplex! Evil drags himself to a corner while Ishii slowly stands. Evil runs but gets caught! Ishii wants to steal the STO!
But Evil spins Ishii around, full nelson to fireman’s carry, but Ishii slips out, clothesline blocked! Rolling elbow hits! Enzugiri! Evil is out cold but Ishii isn’t done with him! Ishii runs and LARIATS! Cover, TWO?! Evil still lives and Ishii can’t believe it! But he won’t stop, he suplexes to the BRAINBUSTER!! Cover, Ishii wins!!
Winner: Tomohiro Ishii, by pinfall
Finally, after a human demolition derby, the Stone Pitbull is victorious! Two of the toughest in NJPW went head to head and Ishii proves the tougher, but when and where will we see this match again?
NJPW Media Backstage Interviews
Ishii says “That’s what you get, facing me in a singles match.” Did Evil learn his lesson? If not, Ishii will happily teach him it again.
But then Taichi walks in to smirk at Ishii. “Oi. Congrats on earning the right to challenge me.” What? You heard Taichi right, Ishii now has the right to challenge for the NEVER Openweight Championship. So Taichi wants after Ishii, huh? Well there’s no one else, so Ishii might as well be the new #1 Contender. Be happy to be chosen. Well if Taichi wants this, Ishii’s game. No it’s about Taichi throwing the Pitbull a bone. Then ask him nicely? As if. The Pitbull should be begging. Accept it and be grateful. Yeah, Taichi seems so grateful, the way he’s treated that belt already. It was broken when Taichi got it from Cobb. Whatever. Ishii accepts the challenge. No, no, Ishii is challenging Taichi, got it? Whatever you say. Weirdo.
But it’s been awhile since Ishii’s seen that belt. Taichi just wants revenge from the New Japan Cup. Reminds Ishii of another wrestler in NJPW. But Ishii’s up for this match anytime, because the results will be the same. When and where will NJPW give us this new NEVER Openweight Championship showdown?
Hiroshi Tanahashi returns to NJPW!
The Ace has been gone since suffering an elbow injury and going through the subsequent surgery to repair it. He surprises the fans here at Wrestling Dontaku, because he has something he wishes to say.
“Tanahashi desu. I had surgery on my left elbow. The cast came off the other day, and I got my stitches out. But I wish I could have competed here.” It was a year ago that here, in Fukuoka, that the crowd was behind him. He rode that wave of energy to win the 28th G1 Climax that August. And then he won the IWGP Heavyweight Championship in the Tokyo Dome. But then in February, he lost, and his losses piled up. And he feels as low as the floor right now. Fans cheer, wanting him to rise back up.
Tanahashi knows he’s starting from the bottom. But as he stands back up, he vows that on June 5th, at Ryogoku, he’ll make another comeback! He continues to say that after that, he’ll again go after the IWGP Heavyweight title! Will the Once in a Century Talent make yet another heroic return?
But wait, here comes Jay White and Gedo! Fans boo as the Switchblade takes the mic from Tanahashi. Gedo tells White some things, and then White grins at Tanahashi. Fans boo as White begins to speak. “You want the IWGP Heavyweight Championship? You think you deserve the IWGP Heavyweight Championship?” The line starts behind White, and Tanahashi is at the back, even behind Hirooki Goto! White is the REAL champion, and it doesn’t matter who wins between Okada and Sanada, White’s turn is next. “Do you understand me?” Gedo makes a move on Tanahashi, but it’s just so White can get his cheap shot in! White stomps Tanahashi as fans boo and the bell rings. White rains down rights then stomps him more.
Gedo ups the ante by bringing out chairs! White grabs one and puts it around Tanahashi’s newly recovered arm! He grabs the other chair, but Young Lions save Tanahashi! White fights them off but Tanahashi is safe from further harm. White picks up the mic again to tell Tanahashi, “I am next!” Fans boo White and cheer Tanahashi. Will the Switchblade and The Ace settle things in the ring to decide who really is next to face the top champion in NJPW? For that matter, we still have the main event to go. Who will be the top champion in NJPW after the dust settles?
NJPW and AXS advertise G1 Climax 29!
Mark your calendars, because on July 6th, 2019, AXS will begin coverage of the Summer’s major heavyweight tournament! The biggest and best of NJPW will once again compete in a round robin tournament to crown a #1 Contender to the IWGP Heavyweight Championship!
IWGP Heavyweight Championship: Kazuchika Okada VS SANADA!
The Rainmaker’s redemption was completed in Madison Square Garden during the history G1 Supercard event! Now Okada returns to give Cold Skull first crack at this fifth title reign. With the Switchblade already calling his shot, who will have the Bullet Club’s cutthroat leader targeting them through the Summer?
The introductions are made, both men take off their elaborately decorated jackets, and the belt is presented. The bell rings and fans are already thunderous as we begin!
Okada and Sanada hear the fans duel before circling. They approach and watch the other closely. Okada backs off so Sanada does the same. They circle again and tie up. Okada waistlocks but Sanada wristlocks and standing switches. Okada switches back but Sanada drops to an armlock. Sanada waistlocks but Okada wrenches free. Okada wrenches more but Sanada reverses it back. Okada rolls and trips up Sanada, and gets the toehold. Sanada endures as Okada cranks back. Sanada tries to chinlock but Okada cranks again. But Sanada manages to sit up and gets Okada’s arm, but Okada blocks the armbar. Okada rolls but Sanada denies a cover. Okada has the leg for a standing toehold, but Sanada works on an escape. Sanada rolls and rolls and breaks free, and fans applaud.
Okada backs off and takes his time circling with Sanada. Sanada and Okada go again, and Okada rolls to get the wristlock. He brings Sanada to the mat then back up for a wrench. Okada gets both arms for a standing stretch, but Sanada endures. Sanada goes to power up but Okada brings him back around. Okada digs his head into Sanada’s back, but Sanada works on turning it around. Sanada and Okada struggle but Okada gets it back. Sanada tries again, and though he gets it, Okada quickly turns it back around. Okada throws Sanada down but Sanada throws Okada from the mat. Okada rolls Sanada, ONE! Sanada rolls Okada, ONE! Okada sweeps Sanada but Sanada gets off to sweep. Okada gets out and both men knip up!
Fans cheer as these two are evenly matched to this point. Okada and Sanada have to nod in respect to the other, too. They circle again and tie up. They stare down as they shift from knuckle locks to collar and elbow. Okada puts Sanada on the ropes, and Red Shoes calls for the break. Classic Okada fakes the chop to pat Sanada’s shoulder. But Sanada comes back with fiery kicks and forearms! Sanada whips but Okada reverses, and boots Sanada to a snapmare. Okada runs and basement dropkicks Sanada down! Okada catches his breath while Sanada checks his head. The champ stands Sanada up and laces the arm through for a modified stretch. Sanada endures but Okada lets go.
Okada brings Sanada around to scoop slam him, then slingshot senton! Sanada clutches his ribs while Okada takes his time returning. Cover, ONE, but Okada keeps on Sanada with a chinlock. Sanada endures the knee in his neck while Okada pulls back. Sanada works on an escape but Okada just brings him back. Fans duel as Sanada works his way back up. Sanada elbows free but Okada clubs him on the back. Okada whips and runs in, but Sanada boots him away. Sanada dropkicks Okada’s legs out! Okada grits his teeth and clutches his knee. Sanada brings Okada up, blocks Okada’s kick, and trips Okada up! Okada pushes him away but runs into a huricanrana! Sanada rolls through to get the arms and legs!
Okada powers out of Paradise and speeds things up, but Sanada dropkicks the leg again! Dragon screw, to Paradise! Fans cheer as Sanada hears them out. Fans duel and rally as Sanada takes aim from a corner, to kick Okada out of Paradise! Cover, TWO, but Sanada keeps cool. Sanada chinlocks but Okada endures. Okada works on an escape but Sanada elbow drops him down. Sanada puts the chinlock on again, but Okada reaches for ropes. Sanada wrangles Okada away and cranks back on the chinlock. Okada scrambles and uses his long legs to get the ropebreak! Sanada lets go but comes back to bring Okada up. He puts Okada in a corner to whip corner to corner. He hits a back elbow then snap suplexes Okada down! Cover, TWO!
Sanada keeps his cool while bringing Okada up again. Okada hits low with a shoulder, then throws forearms. Okada runs but into Sanada’s elbow! Sanada moonsaults but Okada dodges to hit a running uppercut! Both men are down but fans continue to cheer. Okada sits up first, and he runs at Sanada to rally with forearms and elbows! He whips but Sanada reverses. Okada dodges but so does Sanada, but then back to Okada and he runs Sanada over with an elbow! Fans fire up with Okada and whips Sanada corner to corner. Okada hits a back elbow to DDT! Cover, TWO! The champion is still in control while we go to break.
NJPW returns and Okada aims at Sanada on the outside. Okada slingshots but Sanada trips him up. Sanada whips Okada but Okada reverses to send Sanada into barriers! Then he boots him over! Okada fires the fans up as he gets space. He runs back to FLY and crossbody Sanada into more barriers! Both men are down and Red Shoes checks on them both. Okada clutches his leg again, that leap was double-edged. A 20-count begins and passes 10 before Okada stands. Okada drags Sanada up but brings him to ringside at 17! He gets Sanada in at 18 and fans cheer that he wants to end this in the ring. Okada still clutches that leg but manages to stand.
Okada drags Sanada up again to scoop slam him down. He goes to a corner and climbs up, but has to leap over Sanada. He uppercuts Sanada then runs, but Sanada hurdles and dropkicks Okada out of the ring! Now Sanada slingshots and wipes Okada out! Fans fire up as Sanada walks off the pascado. Sanada takes a lap around the ring while Okada is still down. Sanada returns as the 20-count begins again. He lets it reach 10 before bringing Okada up. He puts Okada in at 14 and covers, TWO! Sanada keeps his cool and brings Okada back up. Okada blocks the back suplex and elbows Sanada off. Okada runs but Sanada reels him in. Sanada suplexes but Okada lands on his feet. Okada swings but into the dragon sleeper! But he arm-drags out to flapjack Sanada down!
Both men are down, catching their breath and clutching their legs. Fans rally up and Okada forces himself to stand. Sanada follows but Okada boots him. It doesn’t have as much power, so Sanada boots. Okada blocks it and throws uppercuts to then go for a lift. Sanada fights out, but Okada blocks the boot. Sanada blocks Okada’s boot to give him a forearm. Okada staggers into a boot, then a rolling sabat! Sanada whips but Okada reverses, only for Sanada to fake out the dropkick! Sanada fireman’s carry but Okada slips out. They trade standing switches and Okada German Suplexes, but Sanada lands on his feet! Sanada whips but Okada reverses again, but Sanada tumbles and springboards to missile dropkick Okada down! Fans fire up again as the tide looks to be turning.
Okada gets to a corner and fans duel again. Sanada runs in but is popped up to the Air Raid Crash neckbreaker! Okada catches his breath but he crawls over to Sanada. He positions Sanada before climbing up top again. Okada leaps, Macho Elbow hits! But he’s not done there, Okada hits the Rainmaker pose! Okada drags Sanada up and wristlocks, but Sanada drops down to roll Okada! TWO, and Okada has a cover! TWO and Sanada has it back, TWO! Okada sunset flips, TWO! Sanada sits on Okada, TWO! Okada again, ONE, Sanada jackknifes! TWO, Sanada drop toeholds Okada to a leg nelson, Japanese Clutch, TWO!! Okada has Sanada in a cobra clutch! Sanada endures and flails while fans rally again.
Sanada sits up and Okada drags him up, to wring him out! But Sanada dropkicks the clothesline away! Sanada drags Okada up to whip but Okada reverses to hit his dropkick now! Okada drags Sanada back up, gut wrench but Sanada wriggles to the dragon sleeper! Sanada drops back but Okada rolls through to gut wrench! Tombstone piledriver! But Okada isn’t done, because he still needs his namesake. He wrings Sanada out but Sanada spins to Salida, into the dragon sleeper! Okada endures and maybe even fades under the first part of Skull End! But Okada fights back up and scoops, only for Sanada to counter lift to Anarchy Suplex! Just like Evil earlier, Sanada gets a Magic Killer style move!
Fans duel again as Okada and Sanada sit up. They might even be turning towards Sanada more. Sanada drags Okada up, double chicken wing to the Tiger Suplex! Bridging cover, TWO!! Okada escapes but barely! Sanada keeps on him, scoop and backbreaker. He goes to a corner and climbs up, Moonsault! But he lands on his feet as Okada evades! Sanada staggers back, one of his knees buckling. He still runs at Okada, only to get a boot. Sanada tries again, but into another boot. Okada runs out but Sanada dodges the shotgun. Sanada spins but int a spinning Rainmaker! Okada roars as he drags Sanada back up, wristlock but Sanada full nelsons to another Salida! Okada blocks this one, so Sanada uses the buckles for the climb! He has the Skull End dragon sleeper again!
Okada endures but Sanada takes him for a swing! Then drops down for the body scissors! Skull End in full, but Okada refuses to quit! Red Shoes checks as Okada fades, but Okada revives. Okada flails with his arms then pops out! Sanada keeps the body scissors to get the sleeper with the other arm! He cranks back hard as fans duel and rally. Okada endures and flails again, not fading out. Red Shoes watches Okada like a hawk, but Okada pops out again. Sanada fights to get the head again but Okada crawls for ropes. Okada reaches, but Sanada wrangles him away with a wristlock! Skull End returns a third time, but Okada still flails. Red Shoes checks, his arm drops once. It drops again. Sanada gives up the hold to drag him over?! MOONSAULT to the back! And then again, to knees!!
Both Sanada and Okada are down again! Fans are thunderous again as they duel and rally. Sanada and Okada are exhausted but still push themselves back up. They head for each other, and grind forehead to forehead. Okada throws an elbow, but Sanada returns it. Okada gives Sanada another, but again Sanada gives it back. Another forearm from Okada, and another forearm from Sanada as they stand. Okada, Sanada, repeat. They pick up speed, but Okada dazes Sanada. Okada keeps hitting him, but Sanada refuses to fall. Okada hits Sanada a third time, but Sanada gives him an uppercut! Sanada shakes the sweat from his hair as fan return to a fever pitch. He drags Okada up for another heavy uppercut! Okada falls to his knees, but Sanada brings him back up.
Sanada throws another but Okada backslides! Sanada rolls of and dodges the rainmaker! He waistlocks but Okada bucks him off. Okada runs to shotgun dropkick Sanada down! Okada watches Sanada in the corner, then runs in, only to get elbows! Sanada springboard moonsaults to a dragon sleeper! But Okada uses the buckles to turn it around! Okada has the dragon sleeper, then gut wrenches! But Sanada wiggles to battle over the gut wrench! He gets Okada up, but Okada wiggles and flails! Okada manages to get the gut wrench back! But Sanada slips up and around to a waistlock. Okada tries but can’t buck Sanada off, and Sanada gets the dragon sleeper!
Okada endures again but flips over as Sanada drops back. He drags Sanada up but Sanada dodges! Sanada wrings Okada out but Okada still tries! Sanada ducks that clothesline, to wring Okada out and steal the Rainmaker! Cover, TWO!! Okada survives his own move! Sanada finally shows frustration, but then he vows to end it. He drags Okada back up, cravat to Salida, but Okada slips out. Okada spins but Sanada blocks to then spin for a roaring elbow! Cravat, Sliced Bread, but into a SPINNING TOMBSTONE! And the TRUE Rainmaker!! Cover, Okada wins!!
Winner: Kazuchika Okada, by pinfall; still IWGP Heavyweight Champion
The first defense of this fifth reign and The Rainmaker is STILL the top champion in NJPW! Okada goes 6-0 against Sanada all-time, but it gets tougher and tougher each time! Will we get to see lucky number 7 in the future? Will Sanada finally break through? Or is Okada just on too high a level?
Okada offers a hand to Sanada to help him up. Sanada declines, helping himself up. However, Sanada does take the hand in a small handshake, to then give a fist bump. It sounds like there will be a seventh round one day, we can only wait and see.
NJPW skips to after Okada is again wearing his IWGP Heavyweight Championship belt, to when Okada takes up the mic. “Sanada-san! At the signing ceremony, you honored me by calling me your rival.” That made Okada very happy. So in front of Hakata, he wants to say something to Sanada: he is Okada’s rival, too! Their story has just begun! “But I’m not gonna lose.”
Okada addresses the fans again as he notes “We have changed over from the Heisei Era to Reiwa.” What do the NJPW fans think? Hard to tell. But Okada wonders who will entertain the pro-wrestling world in this Reiwa Era. Okada promises he’ll bring the excitement. He vows to be the star of the new era for the true fans! He’ll bring the heat! “As the 69th IWGP Heavyweight Champion, I will keep the new era exciting.” As long as he’s NJPW’s top champion, he’ll- Wait, the lights go out! A video plays. Is that… CHRIS JERICHO!? The dark clown that Y2J has become says “I’m the Painmaker! And on June 9th at Dominion in Osaka, I will challenge for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship! And I’m gonna win.” Jericho shouts he’ll win, but then hushes himself. Y2J is returning to NJPW and aiming for the top!!
Okada just tells Jericho, “Bring it on, you bastard!” Because Okada vows HE will win! Okada will win and return as champion, to again make it rain! Will Okada continue to be the best in NJPW by beating the Best in the World at What He Does? Or will Jericho completely turn NJPW upside-down at Dominion?
One hour of NJPW on AXS alone is great, so two hours is amazing! Especially when they know how to properly book surprises. I didn’t think Taichi would win the NEVER Openweight Championship off of Jeff Cobb in a mostly clean way. Sure he had Miho be his distraction and his shield, but the Suzuki-Gun antics weren’t even deciding factors this time. Well, an argument can be made that they amounted to something, especially the low blow. But for the most part, Taichi managed to just keep on Cobb until Cobb couldn’t get up. At the same time, Cobb being a dual ROH and NJPW champion wasn’t going to last forever, so it was a good move to make it someone mostly unexpected. Now Taichi VS Ishii will be a good first defense for Taichi, I’m just not sure Taichi survives.
For that matter, Ishii VS Evil was insane. It really was just a demolition derby slug fest type fight, and that’s exactly what it should’ve been. Ishii wins not just because he’ll challenge Taichi but because that was the story of him and Evil. Evil got him last time with the Sharpshooter, and that was a great part of the match’s story, but for that reason, Ishii survives the hold and puts Evil away with a standing finisher. And with another G1 Climax on the horizon, Evil can snap back in the NJPW Heavyweight ranks with an impressive showing. I’m honestly surprised Tanahashi is making another comeback, but NJPW without him would also seem odd. White obviously wants to finish Tanahashi for good, that’s another good story going into G1 Climax 29.
NJPW is also building stars properly. Sanada’s history with Okada has been building over the last three years, and it clearly works in getting fans behind Sanada as we heard from the Fukuoka fans. Okada VS Sanada VI, the longest and best match so far of their series, and I really do look forward to a seventh. If anything, the day Sanada beats Okada is the day Sanada reaches that heavyweight/world championship level. He will be the face of NJPW one day, but not until Okada stops. Okada has been such a strong force in NJPW and with that heavyweight championship, he’s almost the NJPW John Cena or Randy Orton. If it weren’t for his matches always being great, I’d say he should move on. If anything, he should still think about going after a different title once this fifth reign ends.
Jericho returning to NJPW is also great, Okada VS Y2J at Dominion will be great, but I don’t think Jericho is the one to end this fifth reign, and certainly not at this point. Beating Jericho will help build Okada’s fifth reign up, and perhaps solidify Okada’s legacy.
My Score: 9.1/10
Mitchell’s ROH Results & Report! (5/11/19)
It’s Speed VS Strength in the main event!
ROH Wrestling Television, Episode 399
Battle lines have been drawn in ROH! LifeBlood’s Bandido takes on the Notorious Hitman, who takes a big win on War of the Worlds Weekend?
- Triple Threat Tag Team Match: Shinobi Shadow Squad VS Coast to Coast VS The Bouncers; The Bouncers win.
- Flex Simmons VS Josh Woods; Woods wins.
- Bandido VS Shane Taylor; Bandido wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Triple Threat Tag Team Match: Shinobi Shadow Squad VS Coast to Coast VS The Bouncers!
Ryan Nova & Cheeseburger have Eli Isom in their corner, but they’re up against the salty Shaheem Ali & Leon St. Giovanni and the massive Beer City Bruiser & Brian Milonas! Triple S got a Six Man Tag victory over C2C and Colin Delaney on the Road to G1 Supercard, but can they pull off another shocker against even bigger and badder competition? As for C2C and The Bouncers, they lost together at this year’s Masters of the Craft, but Ali & LSG refused to share a #ToastofHonor in commiseration. Will that chip on C2C’s shoulder go away or only grow bigger tonight?
The Bouncers keep the Code of Honor with the Shinobi but C2C refuse to shake hands with anyone. Fans cheer “Beer! Beer!” for BCB and Milonas while they let Nova start with LSG. LSG and Nova tie up, and LSG gets the wristlock. Nova rolls and reverses, but LSG handsprings and reverses back. LSG waistlocks and slams Nova hard, then headlocks. Nova powers out and things speed up, LSG waistlocks Nova again but Nova bucks him off. Things keep moving and Nova counters a backslide with an arm-drag. LSG runs back in and waistlocks, but Nova slips out of the back suplex. Nova boots LSG away from the corner, then somersaults to neckbreaker! Nova knips up and fans fire up as he tags in Burger. Whip to atomic drop to sweep, then they split the wish bone to double kick LSG down!
Fans fire up with Triple S but Ali runs in. Ali misses Burger and Nova to hit the Bouncers! Ail runs into a double hip toss! Nova and Burger high-ten, but then the Bouncers come in to sandwich them! Bruiser whips Nova while “Brawler” whips Burger, and then they trade partners to squash them in the corners. And then they go corner to corner to squash the other! The Bouncers see Ali and LSG and squash them! And then the other way! Milonas feeds Ali to BCB to bite! LSG runs in but he gets bit, too! And Burger! And Nova! But remember, he ain’t got no teeth! The Bounces high-five and say bottom’s up, but C2C boot them both! And again!
The Bouncers tumble out and C2C give the shinobis CHOPS! C2C whip Nova and Burger at each other, but Burger and Nova do-si-do to dropkick C2C! The shinobi slingshot but are caught! The Bouncers sandwich them again, but then C2C wreck them all with dropkicks! They keep moving, Ali FLIES! Ali bowls everyone over, then drags Burger in while we go to break.
ROH returns as Ali slingshot sentons onto Burger. Cover, TWO! Ali is just annoyed as he tags in LSG. Fans rally up for Burger but Ali holds him in place for LSG’s shoulder tackle. Ali adds an enziguri, then feeds Burger to LSG’s butterfly suplex! Cover, TWO! LSG drags Burger back up for an armlock and chinbar. Fans rally behind Burger and Burger fights back. Ali tags in and C2C mugs Burger. Ali gives Burger a big European uppercut, then covers, TWO! Burger fights back with big CHOPS! Fans fire up but Ali brings Burger away to then hit Nova! Burger dodges and dodges, and tags in Milonas! Ali waistlocks but Milonas breaks free with a big butt bump! Milonas rallies and drops the seated senton! Cover, but LSG breaks it!
Bruiser goes after LSG then whips, Samoan Drop! Back senton from Milonas! BCB whips Ali into Milonas’ scrapbuster slam! Cover, but Nova breaks it! BCB shoves Nova all the way out, but LSG shoulders in. LSG slingshots to hit Milonas then springboards to hit BCB! C2C regroups to go after Milonas. LSG climbs while Ali scoops Milonas. Milonas is too heavy, he falls onto Ali! BCB uppercuts LSG then tosses him onto Ali! The Bouncers grab LSG and toss him out. Ali rolls and Nova tags in! Nova leaps at Bruiser for the flying Complete Shot! Nova fires forearms on Milonas! Milonas grabs him and scoops him, but Burger saves him. Double SUPERKICKS! They focus their chakra, buzzsaw mule kick combo!
BCB runs over Nova but Burger dodges to FLY onto C2C! Fans fire up but Burger runs into an uppercut from BCB! Nova knees Bruiser but runs into Brawler’s boot! CLOSING TIME! Cover, The Bouncers win!
Winners: The Bouncers, Brian Milonas pinning
The Shinobi Shadow Squad doesn’t have to go home, but they can’t stay here. But they also argue with Coast 2 Coast, who are sore losers all over again. As for Bruiser and Milonas, they celebrate with the #ToastofHonor! Will they soon be toasting with a shot at the ROH tag titles?
ROH has a huge night set for Episode 400!
Matt Taven is finally the ROH World Champion, because he earned it. He won a Triple Threat Ladder match at G1 Supercard in Madison Square Garden, also becoming a Grand Slam Champion. But when it comes to having a shot at his title, Taven tells the entire locker room that they’ll have to earn it. Cue Flip Gordon! The Captain of Flip Army reminded Matt Taven that he earned his shot in the Sea of Honor tournament. And with his knee at 100%, Flip finally gets his shot as the new #1 contender! Who ends the milestone episode of ROH having earned the world championship?
But not only that, the ROH World Six Man Tag Team Championships will be on the line! Villain Enterprises will defend their titles against a star-studded though makeshift team of Jay Lethal, Jeff Cobb and Rush! Will Marty Scurll, Brody King & PCO keep hold of the gold against the Franchise, the Hawaiian Hulk and El Toro Blanco?
ROH looks back at the G1 Supercard Honor Rumble!
Kenny King CHOSE to be number one in this massive match, that featured huge stars across ROH and NJPW, such as Minoru Suzuki, Jushin Thunder Liger and even THE GREAT MUTA! It looked to be down to just the two masked legends, Muta and Liger, but Kenny wasn’t actually eliminated! He threw both legends out in one fell sweep and won his shot at the ROH World Championship, but he would get some karma in the way of Muta’s mist!
Kenny King is here!
The Honor Rumble winner is apparently still blinded? He has a walking stick and assistance walking out from ROH timekeeper, Amy Rose. Fans chant “Thank You, Muta!” as King struggles to get a mic. “I should be…” Wait, face camera. “I should be the happiest dude alive right now.” But he’s not and why is that? You see, King is the only man in professional wrestling who does exactly what he says he will. He told everyone that he’d start at number one and “molly whop all them other chops” to become the first man to win the Honor Rumble from number one. King is now #1 Contender, but he shall now be known as Kenny Shawn Michaels King.
And that’s not even the best part! We were all treated to something special at G1 Supecard! Two men stood, Jushin Thunder Liger and the Great Muta, and tension was palpable. No one knew what was going to happen, until King slid in the ring to throw their “700 year old Japanese wrinkly asses” out to win the Honor Rumble! They say never meet your heroes. King did, he wanted to shake hands with Muta, and Muta spit the red mist in his face! Fans think it’s funny? It’s awful! It smelled like laundry detergent and Popeye’s Chicken, and it burned Kenny’s face and eyes! Now King needs emergency eye surgery, so that’s why he won’t be wrestling tonight. But that brings him to Matt Taven. King wants to tell us something we might not know about Taven. “Matt Taven is my homie.”
The two kings are friendly with each other. Kenny was proud of Taven at G1. One day they’ll have to discuss the terms of Taven’s surrender, but until then, he wants Taven to fight. Taven is not King’s target. He is not the man who upsets King. Who here thinks Jay Lethal is great? Kenny doesn’t. Lethal’s not tough, and the only time he’s savage is when he’s cosplaying Randy. So to Jay Lethal, when King gets through his surgery to see again, both eyes will be on Lethal. Because then Kenny will prove he’s the K I N G, and he’ll make Lethal #BendTheKnee. Amy helps King get his walking stick and exit the ring carefully. Will King see clearly and get his hands on Lethal? Or will Lethal make him see all of that trash talk wasn’t worth a thing?
Flip Gordon speaks on his leg injury.
It was at ROH Honor Reigns Supreme, in a match with Hot Sauce Tracy Williams. All seemed same as always, but as Flip dropkick’d Tracy in the corner, his knee gave out. Flip feared the worst, and wanted to finish the match, but his springboard spear only made it worse. He could only take another step, so he had to call it there. Flip feared the worst, but the MRI gave him a time frame. What did he have to do to beat this? Physical therapy. Flip stuck to the schedule, and trusted his doctors. Now his knee is ready, and he is ready! The other ROH World Championship contenders fell to Lethal, but then Taven rose up to win. Now Flip’s turn comes as episode 400 arrives! Will Flip’s return be one of the greatest in ROH history?
Flex Simmons VS Josh Woods!
An ROH dojo graduate makes his television premiere as he flexes his… fairly good physique. But he’s up against The Goods, Mr. Top Prospect 2017, who returns after returning to his roots. Now Woods is #DownToFight, will he end Flex’s television career before it begins?
The Code of Honor is upheld, and the bell rings. Woods SPEARS Flex! Flex staggers up into a waistlock slam! Woods grimaces as he drags Flex up for an exploder suplex! Flex can only flounder around into a fireman’s carry, Seismic Toss slam! Cover, Woods wins!
Winner: Josh Woods, by pinfall
Woods returns more focused and more aggressive, and doesn’t care to shake hands with Flex again. He wants his money and the next fight, who will be #DownToFight The Goods?
ROH interviewer Quinn McKay interviews Josh Woods.
The 2017 Top Prospect Tournament winner, the NCWA National Champion, and multi-time All American wrestler is also captain of the US MMA team, and is back in ROH with an impressive showing. But he’s been gone for some time. What’s he been up to? It isn’t about what he was up to, but about what he just did and has done his entire career. Woods has always been #DownToFight. Will he finally fight his way to an ROH championship?
Bandido VS Shane Taylor!
Though they have beef with Bully Ray over the attack on Tenille Dashwood, LifeBlood’s luchador will take on the Notorious Hitman who has been known to pall around with the Hall of Famer. Will Bandido’s speed or Taylor’s strength win out in this first-time-ever face-off?
Bandido wants to uphold the Code of Honor, but Taylor spits on Bandido’s hand! The bell rings and Bandido fires off with kicks. Bandido runs and slides but Taylor catches him. Taylor whips but Bandido counters to throw forearms. But Taylor stays up! Taylor grabs Bandido but Bandido slips out of the choke slam. Taylor elbows Bandido away, but Bandido elbows back. SUPERKICK! Fans fire up as Bandido whips, but Taylor blocks. Taylor whips but Bandido dodges and kicks, but Taylor blocks again. Taylor flips Bandido but Bandido lands on his feet to sunset flip! Bandido can’t get Taylor down, but he gets out of the way as Taylor sits down!
Bandido keeps moving to basement dropkick Taylor out! Fans fire up as Bandido builds speed to DIVE! Direct hit sends Taylor into the barriers! Bandido keeps moving, and FLIES! He wipes Taylor out again, and celebrates with fans while we go to break.
ROH returns once again, and Bandido gets Taylor back in. Bandido stands Taylor up to chop, but Taylor shrugs it off. Bandido tries again, but then Taylor CHOPS Bandido to a corner! Taylor trash talks Bandido but Bandido CHOPS back! Bandido eggs Taylor on so Taylor CHOPS Bandido off his feet. Taylor drags Bandido up but Bandido fires forearms back! Bandido tries to fireman’s carry but Taylor fights him off. Taylor swings but Bandido ducks, only to get caught in a choke slam! Taylor mocks the fans as they cheer for Bandido. Bandido gets to a corner again but Taylor is on him with big knees. Taylor throws a big right and Bandido goes down! Taylor taunts Bandido more as he drags him back up. He tosses Bandido across the ring! Bandido stirs but Taylor trash talks the fans.
Taylor stalks Bandido as fans rally up. Taylor stands Bandido up again, to throw him by his hair! Bandido hits hard and flounders to ropes. Taylor drags Bandido up again and whips him corner to corner. He runs in and clotheslines Bandido down! Fans boo Taylor but he just stands on Bandido’s head! Taylor lets up at 4, but comes back to drag Bandido back up. Taylor talks trash the entire time but Bandido revives to throw forearms! Bandido dodges one clothesline but gets the other! Cover, TWO! Fans rally up again as Taylor sits Bandido up to elbow away! Taylor covers, TWO! Taylor drags Bandido back up and slaps him around. He whips Bandido corner to corner but runs into a boot!
Bandido boots and enziguris, then hops up top. He leaps, into the One Hitter Quitter! Cover, TWO!? Bandido survives Taylor’s right hand! Fans rally up and Bandido has new life, but Taylor is right on him again. Bandido fires forearms then fireman’s carries again. Taylor is still too much but Bandido elbows him back. Bandido boots but gets blocked, Taylor rolls Bandido for a big knee to the face! Cover, TWO!! Bandido still lives while we go to one last break!
ROH returns once more, and Taylor still slaps and toys with Bandido. Bandido blocks the slaps to fire off slaps of his own! Taylor SLAPS Bandido, but Bandido still comes back with more! Taylor CHOPS, but Bandido fires off kicks and knees! Bandido runs, but into a clothesline! But he’s right back up!? Taylor is shocked, but Bandido fires off slaps and kicks. Bandido knees and SUPERKICKS! Taylor staggers, but still gets Bandido with another choke slam! Both men are down but fans fire up! A standing count begins as fans rally. The count passes 5 before Taylor sits up. Bandido stirs but Taylor stands. Taylor brings Bandido up for big haymakers, but Bandido returns with forearms. They go back and forth, with fans on Bandido’s side.
Bandido gets an edge then spins, into a headbutt! Hammerlock rip cord, End of Days! Cover, TWO!! Taylor is frustrated he couldn’t finish Bandido off! Bandido stands and boots Taylor away. Then he swing kicks from the apron, only to slingshot into the One Hitter! Taylor slingshots Bandido in, London Tower! Cover, TWO!?! Bandido is superhuman! Fans keep cheering Bandido on and he revives again. Taylor shakes his head as he CHOPS Bandido in a corner. And CHOPS again, and again! Bandido flops over and Taylor vows to end this. Taylor drags Bandido up, whips him corner to corner, but Bandido boots him away. Bandido uppercuts then springboard tornillo crossbody! Bandido takes aim, and fireman’s carry! GTS, BANG to 21 Plex!! Cover, Bandido wins!!
Winner: Bandido, by pinfall
The luchador triumphs over the titanic Hitman! But wait, here comes Bully Ray! Bandido sees him coming, and has LifeBlood’s Tracy and Mark Haskins with him! Bully wants a time-out, he wasn’t expecting to be the one outnumbered. But wait, who are these attacking LifeBlood?! The Soldiers of Savagery, Moses Maddox and Jasper Kaun, are the newest recruits to ROH and they’re already making an impact! They stomp out Bandido, Tracy and Haskins, then slam Haskins down for a Vader Bomb! They lift Bandido for a gutbuster drop! And they go after Hot Sauce with a feed to a SPEAR! Then an elevated DDT! Even Bully seems confused. SOS did this without any help from Taylor or Bully, or without an invitation. But will they be Bully’s new back-up against LifeBlood?
A really great episode to act as a go-home to episode 400. We get a pretty great Triple Threat Tag to open the night. It’s an interesting development for C2C to take a slow transition into Heel with this salty new attitude of theirs, but that might be the spark they need to take that next step up in the ROH tag division. The Bouncers continue their own rise up, perhaps they’ll finally get their own shot now that we’ll be past War of the Worlds. Bruiser & Milonas against Guerrillas of Destiny would be a pretty fun match, though obviously another match GoD would retain the titles in.
Kenny King playing up being blinded was pretty hilarious here tonight. And even without that, he gave us a great promo overall, though obviously while he’s waiting his turn at the world title, he’s going after Lethal. Lethal VS King all over again should make for a good match or two, and I’m pretty sure King wins to go right at the world champion, whoever that is. We got a good video package and promo from Flip, but I’m not sure if he wins that title off Taven, even on a milestone episode. Regardless of it being his return, Woods was obviously going to win against Flex Simmons tonight. In fact, anyone going against Flex Simmons tonight was going to win because Flex was obviously the generic jobber.
Woods being back, I wonder if he’ll get a better push than he did before. I don’t think he can take the ROH World Television Championship off Jeff Cobb, but I hope we can get a great match out of them. And I’m sure we’ll get a great Six Man out of Lethal, Cobb and Rush VS Villain Enterprises. But such a random team is not beating an established trio like Villain Enterprises. I don’t think Scurll and his team lose the titles until a rematch with The Kingdom. Bandido VS Taylor was amazing, worthy of leading to title contention. It was great story for Bandido to win, both in the match and overall.
It was a great bait and switch for Bully to be the one surrounded, but then to swerve back and debut a new duo. I suppose Bully would need new allies with The Briscoes likely reserved for a rematch with GoD. I’d expect at least a Six Man Tag, Bully & SoS VS LifeBlood, but you could throw in Taylor on Bully’s side and get Juice Robinson involved for an Eight Man Tag. Either way, this looks to be building to the LifeBlood VS Bully and crew story I was hoping for.
My Score: 8.3/10
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