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Does AJ Styles Deserve Better?

AJ Styles it the best in the world, he holds the oldest and “most prestigious” championship in all of WWE. And he deserves better.

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The phrase “deserve” gets thrown around a lot in professional wrestling. “YOU DESERVE IT!” is an often mis- or over-used chant at all levels of the business, because it’s usually around a championship that is typically used as a prop. But looking at the 290 day reign (as of today) of WWE Champion AJ Styles, I can’t help but think he deserves better.

AJ Styles defeated Jinder Mahal on the November 2, 2017 edition of WWE Smackdown Live, airing on tape delay from Manchester, England. It was the fifth WWE Championship change of 2017, with the other reigns lasting 170 days (Jinder Mahal), 49 days (Randy Orton), 49 days (Bray Wyatt), and 14 days (John Cena). It was easy to think AJ Styles might not necessarily get to that 290 mark he’s attained so far.

The title change came as a surprise to many. Jinder Mahal was set to face Brock Lesnar in a champion vs champion match at Survivor Series, a match that many weren’t excited about due to the style (no pun intended) employed by both men. Upon his win, the Survivor Series match saw an immediate upgrade.

Personally, I am a huge AJ Styles fan. I’ve long felt that his significance was downplayed in TNA/IMPACT Wrestling, or at least not given the proper recognition. The fact that so many former WWE superstars were inducted into TNA’s Hall Of Fame before AJ was even given consideration is irresponsible at best, intentionally negligent at worst. I personally feel that AJ Styles is a phenomenal choice to carry the WWE championship (pun definitely intended this time).

Take a look at the PPV matches for AJ Styles during his tenure as WWE Championship:

Survivor Series 2017 (Co-Branded PPV)

  • Universal Champion Brock Lesnar pinned WWE Champion AJ Styles (non-title)
  • Main Event? NO
  • Main Event: Raw vs. Smackdown Survivor Series Elimination Match (sole survivors Triple H and Braun Strowman)
  • AJ’s match placement: second to last

While the brand vs brand theme makes it “okay” for the elimination match to go on last, it also makes 100% sense for the champions to battle in the main event to see which brand wins.

Clash Of Champions 2017 (Smackdown Brand PPV)

  • WWE Champion AJ Styles defeated Jinder Mahal via submission
  • Main Event? YES

AJ did get to main event this PPV, which was Smackdown only, defeating Jinder Mahal and vanquishing any claim he has to rematch.

Royal Rumble 2018 (Co-Branded PPV)

  • WWE Champion AJ Styles defeated Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn in a handicap match
  • Main Event? NO
  • Main Event: First ever Women’s Royal Rumble (won by Asuka)
  • AJ’s match placement: opener

While a Royal Rumble going on last makes sense, a world title match main eventing isn’t out of the question for a Royal Rumble. But going on first?

Elimination Chamber 2018 (Raw Brand PPV)

  • This was a Raw only PPV, headlined by a 7-man Elimination Chamber match won by Braun Strowman

FastLane 2018 (Smackdown Brand PPV)

  • WWE Champion AJ Styles defeated Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, John Cena, Dolph Ziggler, and Baron Corbin
  • Main Event? YES

This show would be AJ Styles’ last PPV main event to date, also on a Smackdown only PPV, and also in a match that was built around the feud between Shane McMahon, Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, and Daniel Bryan.

WrestleMania 34 (Co-Branded PPV)

  • WWE Champion AJ Styles pinned Royal Rumble winner Shinsuke Nakamura
  • Main Event? NO
  • Main Event: Universal Champion Brock Lesnar defeats Roman Reigns
  • AJ’s match placement: third from the top (before Braun & Nicholas winning the tag team championship)

AJ would face Shinsuke, the Royal Rumble winner, on more shows, but this was one of his two clean victories over him. No reason it had to go on before Braun Strowman teaming with a child.

Greatest Royal Rumble (Co-Branded PPV)

  • WWE Champion AJ Styles battled Shinsuke Nakamura to a double countout
  • Main Event? NO
  • Main Event: The 50-Man Greatest Royal Rumble won by Braun Strowman
  • AJ’s match placement: fourth from the top

This show is a bit of an anomaly, since you had the Greatest Royal Rumble itself on top, but the three matches that preceded it really could have gone on in any order. Given that circumstance, AJ got the worst of it.

Backlash 2018 (Co-Branded PPV)

  • WWE Champion AJ Styles battled Shinsuke Nakamura to a draw in a No-Disqualification Match
  • Main Event? NO
  • Main Event: Roman Reigns pinned Samoa Joe
  • AJ’s match placement: third from the top (before Braun Strowman & Bobby Lashley beating Kevin Owen & Sami Zayn)

It’s easy to point out that AJ did main event two PPV events (not co-branded) prior to this one, and you can even point to circumstances that hurt him in others (Brock Lesnar title defense, Royal Rumble matches, etc), but on this show it really started to feel like AJ was hurt by his placement. Once again he’s sitting behind a Braun Strowman title match, and a Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe main event that felt like a mid-card match. Even with the non-finish (no stretch for WWE), this feels like a spot where AJ Styles should be in the main event.

Money In The Bank 2018 (Co-Branded PPV)

  • WWE Champion AJ Styles defeated Shinsuke Nakamura to end their feud, winning a 31-minute Last Man Standing Match
  • Main Event? NO
  • Main Event: Men’s Money In The Bank Ladder Match, won by Braun Strowman
  • AJ’s match placement: third from the top (before Ronda Rousey vs. Nia Jax for the Raw Women’s Championship), and you can call it fourth if you want to get technical thanks to Alexa Bliss cashing in, but I’m not “that guy”

Okay, here’s where I start to have a serious problem with the booking of AJ Styles. This was his blowoff match with Shinsuke Nakamura, and one where they had placed some serious reasonable doubt as to who would win. It was a Last Man Standing Match that would last 31 minutes, and was easily the best match on what many feel was the best PPV of the year (myself included). While I understand the Money in the Bank gimmick, precedent was long set for the briefcase match to not main event the PPV when another match warranted it. And, in my not-so-humble-opinion, AJ Styles was the obvious choice for the main event here.

Extreme Rules 2018 (Co-Branded PPV)

  • WWE Champion AJ Styles defeated Rusev to retain the WWE Championship
  • Main Event? NO
  • Main Event: Dolph Ziggler beat Seth Rollins in a 30-minute Ironman Match, 5-4 in sudden-death overtime
  • AJ’s match placement: second to last

In all honesty, this was a show without a main event. No match was ever really advertised as the main event, and even when Seth Rollins vs Dolph Ziggler was getting ready to start, it was never once termed a “main event” by any announcer on the broadcast. That doesn’t happen by accident.

Rusev is officially a babyface, and was one of the hottest acts in the entire company heading into this match. I can easily see a situation where he wins the Royal Rumble and defeats AJ Styles for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 35 (which also won’t be in the main event). On a card with no clear main event, the WWE Championship (and WWE Champion) should carry the weight needed to headline the show. But AJ Styles wasn’t trusted with that role, furthering the argument that AJ Styles deserves better.

SummerSlam 2018 (Co-Branded PPV)

  • Samoa Joe defeated WWE Champion AJ Styles by disqualification
  • Main Event? Hahahahahahahaha NO
  • Main Event: Roman Reigns defeated Brock Lesnar to win the Universal Championship
  • AJ’s match placement: sixth from the top, the fifth match on a card of ten matches

Now, I’ll be the first person to tell you that Roman Reigns finally defeating Brock Lesnar and essentially bringing the Universal Championship back to the WWE should have gone on last. I will also tell you that this match between AJ and Joe is basically the first of their program, so the disqualification finish kinda makes sense. I say “kinda” because I hated Joe, the bad-ass ass-kicker of all of the asses, having to resort to involving AJ’s wife. Joe, being one of the best in the world, made chick salad out of it.

Before we look ahead, we also have to look back at the posters used for some of these events. They are also quite telling…

AJ Styles PPV Posters

AJ Styles is off to a great start with Survivor Series, appearing as Brock Lesnar’s equal. This is huge, as Smackdown is considered the “B show” by so many. But after Survivor Series, AJ Styles is an after thought. He goes from looking like a part of the Royal Rumble match in that poster, to not even appearing on the SummerSlam poster.

Why is this important? Because one thing we all know about WWE is that Vince McMahon loves to “book the poster.” And if he’s booking the poster, AJ Styles isn’t being treated like a star.

Now let’s look ahead to WWE’s Hell In a Cell pay-per-view. AJ Styles lost to Samoa Joe by disqualification on the PPV before Hell In A Cell, which is a perfect set-up for a rematch inside the Cell. One of the big criticisms of the Hell In A Cell event is that the matches aren’t built to where they NEED the Cell. Well, AJ vs. Joe is the most Cell-worthy match they have right now, thanks to Joe’s actions on the road to SummerSlam.

So when AJ Styles vs. Samoa Joe for the WWE Championship at Hell In A Cell was announced, it was announced like this:

Further, when you go to the WWE’s article referenced in the tweet, there is ZERO mention of the match being in a Cell, or possibly being in a Cell. Not even a tease. Is there a chance it’s in the Cell? Sure! But it doesn’t seem likely at all.

That’s a shame. It’s not even a shame, it’s irresponsible booking. When Smackdown Live moves to FOX in October 2019, the game will change. Smackdown becomes the A show, even if Raw is still the flag bearer for the company. I am making a prediction right now: by the time Smackdown moves to FOX, AJ Styles will not be on the Smackdown roster. If he is, he’s a secondary champion at best.

AJ Styles it the best in the world, he holds the oldest and “most prestigious” championship in all of WWE. And he deserves better.


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Andrew’s G1 Climax 29 Ratings & Analysis: Night 4 B Block

Second night for the B Block! Jay White and Tetsuya Naito need to get on the scoreboard. Did it happen?

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Second night for the B Block! Jay White and Tetsuya Naito need to get on the scoreboard. Did it happen?

Sapporo is a fun city for the main event, with a lot of general history.

Will Ospreay having a neck injury means he’s not working the undercard tonight.

Those are probably the two points that matter the most. So I guess let’s get to the show!

Ratings:

  • Jyushin Thunder Liger & Kota Ibushi vs Yota Tsuji & Shota Umino: Ibushi wins via Half Boston Crab @8:20 – **
  • Toa Henare, Ren Narita & Tomoaki Honma vs EVIL, BUSHI & SANADA: BUSHI wins via MX @7:20 – ** 1/2
  • Minoru Suzuki, Yoshinobu Kanemaru, Zack Sabre Jr & Lance Archer vs KENTA, Clark Connors, Karl Fredricks & Hiroshi Tanahashi: Kanemaru wins via Deep Impact @11:30 – ***
  • Chase Owens & Bad Luck Fale vs Kazuchika Okada & YOSHI-HASHI: Okada wins via Rainmaker @8:45 – ** 1/4
  • Block B: Shingo Takagi vs Toru Yano: Shingo wins via Pumping Bomber @6:15 – ** 3/4
  • Block B: Juice Robinson vs Hirooki Goto: Juice wins via Pulp Friction @12:20 – *** 1/2
  • Block B: Jon Moxley vs Jeff Cobb: Moxley wins via Draping Deathrider @8:55 – *** 1/4
  • Block B: Tomohiro Ishii vs Jay White: Ishii wins via Vertical Drop Brainbuster @19:15 – **** 1/2
  • Block B: Taichi vs Tetsuya Naito: Taichi wins via Last Ride @21:00 – *** 3/4

 

Analysis:

Liger and Ibushi take on Young Lions because Will Ospreay is nursing an injury. So this was unexpected, but who’s gonna argue with some Liger? Bare bones basic Young Lion match, but Liger and Ibushi kept the interest high.

EVIL and SANADA are facing one another on Thursday, but they were on the same team tonight. Part of this story was BUSHI remaining to look strong since the end of the BOSJ, while EVIL and SANADA had the tension building up. Instead of the LIJ fist bump after the win, EVIL tries to cheap shot SANADA, SANADA counters and then they have a stand off.

This Suzuki-Gun match was beautiful. It was just a gang fight, with each member of Suzuki-Gun taking someone off and Lance Archer even joined commentary at some point. House show quality match was a good way to describe this, but it was still fun and got across the point for future matches and just great character work.

It might be a little mean to say, but YOSHI-HASHI is in this match, so who cares? Chase Owens does prove why he’s the glue that holds Bullet Club together. He’s a great tag team player and this year he’s looked a lot better than he has in the past. So we’ve got an alright match, Okada wasn’t gonna eat a pin, but I guess they wanted to protect YOSHI a little, so Chase ate the Rainmaker.

Shingo proved he watched the Naito match by trying to get Yano to take off his shirt. Anyone who saw Shingo in Dragon Gate knows he’s got some comedy chops being a former…wait…the current, Open the Owarai Gate champion (Owarai means comedy). Shirt, wrist tape and turnbuckle shenanigans ensue, but the right person won. Shingo gets on the board and doesn’t suffer the shame of getting bamboozled.

This tends to be an issue with Goto and Juice a lot of the time. By this, I mean boredom. Goto and Juice have bumped heads a few times and they both try very hard, but they aren’t exciting together. Juice being a quirky but not overly animated just means you get a snarky line and one move that may be entertaining (usually Left Hand of God) and then the action stalls. So both did good work, it was a tough match, but it wasn’t really anything crazy. Solid enough match though.

Moxley focused on Cobb’s left shoulder, so the story was to take out Cobb’s power and try to figure out how to end the match. We saw another solid match, and Moxley gets across more of his character. He does borderline heel tactics and then apologizes to the referee. So this brawling, unstable babyface is an old school gimmick in Japan, but not often seen in New Japan. It’s nice to watch, and Moxley taking advantage of Cobb’s positioning to hit the Draping Dirty Deathriding Paradigm DDT.

Jay White starts off against two of the heavier hitters from Chaos, his former stable. After taking Goto lightly, Ishii comes into this match after a big win over Jeff Cobb. White came into the match less relaxed, but still playing up his smarmy character. Ishii laid into Jay the whole match, where Jay tried to outsmart the Stone Pitbull, but Jay isn’t as clever as he thinks he is. A great match with well placed false finishes and a lot of tension. Fantastic back and forth, plus Ishii picking up the win is something special.

There were so many story threads going on here. Sapporo is the place of their Intercontinental Championship match earlier in the year where Taichi had Takashi Iizuka interfere. Iizuka left the Iron Fingers for Taichi, but he hasn’t used them in the 6 months he’s had them. This was a great struggle of wrestlers who were once rivals, but Naito has since eclipsed Taichi. Hell, Taichi even hit a Ganso Bomb, shades of his mentor Toshiaki Kawada. References, call backs and a solid match from a story telling perspective.  Work rate might not have been fantastic, but that’s the beauty of professional wrestling being more than the moves in the ring. Plus part of the fun of Taichi matches is watch Miho Abe react, since she’s such a lovely devoted valet.

Overall Score: 6.75/10

A lot of this show was driven by the stories and the historical threads between participants, opposed to the in-ring action. I appreciate the mixture of angles that New Japan shows attack with. Many newer fans just know NJPW for great hard hitting work rate, but the beauty of puroresu in general is how deep the stories go.

Sometimes the wrestlers reference things from their mentors/trainers, sometimes it’s just a story line from the isolationist politics that each puro company has dabbled with or sometimes it goes all the way back to when someone was a Young Boy in a dojo. The layers are there for those who wish to know, so part of the fun in nights like this, are what personally floats your boat.

The show was the weakest so far, but there were plenty of satisfying moments outside of ring work.

B Block Standings:

  • Tomohiro Ishii – 2-0 (4 Points)
  • Jon Moxley – 2-0 (4 Points)
  • Juice Robinson – 2-0 (4 Points)
  • Toru Yano – 1-1 (2 Points)
  • Hirooki Goto – 1-1 (2 Points)
  • Shingo Takagi – 1-1 (2 Points)
  • Taichi – 1-1 (2 Points)
  • Jay White – 0-2 (0 Points)
  • Jeff Cobb – 0-2 (0 Points)
  • Tetsuya Naito – 0-2 (0 Points)


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Opinion

Andrew’s Top 5 Matches: Week Ending 7/14/2019

HOLY WRESTLING WEEKEND BATMAN! With everything that went on, what did I see and what made the Top 5?

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HOLY WRESTLING WEEKEND BATMAN! With everything that went on, what did I see and what made the Top 5?

Well let’s not mess around too much since we’ve got a lot to break down. Our June match of the month was a two horse race, but one did end up winning without any controversy.

Updated Match of the Year Pool:

  • January – NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 13 IWGP Heavyweight Championship: Kenny Omega (c) vs Hiroshi Tanahashi
  • February – NXT Halftime Heat: Ricochet, Aleister Black & Velveteen Dream vs Adam Cole, Johnny Gargano & Tommaso Ciampa
  • March – Stardom: Wonder of Stardom Title Match: Jungle Kyona vs Momo Watanabe (c)
  • April – WrestleMania 35: WWE Championship: Kofi Kingston vs Daniel Bryan (c)
  • May – AEW Double or Nothing: Cody Rhodes vs Dustin Rhodes
  • June – NJPW BOSJ 26 Finals Day: BOSJ 26 Finals: Shingo Takagi vs Will Ospreay

So there we go. The BOSJ Finals that blew away many that saw it, still resonated well with voters. So we have our first iteration of the same company getting a second match, but still none of the wrestlers yet.

Now what won last week, as the first match of July? Impact Wrestling Slammiversary: Impact World Championship: Brian Cage (c) vs Michael Elgin, took the first match slot of July.

Since we had so many shows this weekend, there was a draw, so we’ve got 6 matches this week in the interest of fairness.

 

5t. NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: SANADA vs Will Ospreay

From My Analysis:
Well now, this went back and forth quite a bit. SANADA proved his athleticism, Ospreay proved that he can hang with heavyweights and it was close the whole time. The only really awful spot was Ospreay slipping out of the Paradise Lock. There’s a gimmick there, and we don’t need the allure of it to be cheapened for a dumb flip spot. Aside from that worthless moment, the match was really wrestled well and SANADA had a few attempts at victory. SANADA’s constant desire to use the Moonsault still proves to be his downfall. He really needs a new move.

Winner: Ospreay via Stormbreaker

Rating: ****

 

5t. AEW Fight for the Fallen: The Brotherhood (Cody & Dustin Rhodes) vs The Young Bucks

Snippet from Mitchell’s Coverage:
The Bucks have Dustin alone and they know it. Fans rally up behind Dustin as he throws hands on both Bucks! He gives jab after jab, and pumps it up like daddy did! Dirty birds for Matt, bionic backhands for Nick! But then a SUPERKICK in return! Shining Wizard to Macho Elbow! Cover, TWO!! Fans duel again as Matt grits his teeth. Matt runs at Dustin in the corner but gets a kick. Dustin hops on for a DESTROYER! Cover, TWO!! Fans rally and Dustin still feels it. Dustin tags Cody in and he sends Nick’s kick into Matt. Then Cody SUPERKICKS Nick, grabs Matt, but Nick SUPERKICKS Cody back! The Bucks think, and as Cody stands again, they give him DOUBLE SUPERKICKS to the back! Cover, but Dustin breaks it!

The Rhodes regroup, as do the Bucks. Fans hope they “Fight Forever!” as the Rhodes both stand together. The Bucks rush them, to steal the uppercuts! But then they get SUPERKICKS from the Rhodes! To give them back! Stolen Cross Rhodes! Cover, TWO!! Cody survives his own move, but the Bucks are not done. Nick FLIES onto Dustin, then coordinates with Matt. Matt gut wrenches, Nick springboards, MELTZER DRIVER! Cover, the Young Bucks win!

Winner: Bucks via Meltzer Driver

Rating: ****

 

4. NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Block B: Tomohiro Ishii vs Jeff Cobb

From My Analysis:
HOSS FIGHT! Big boys do big boy things and it was great. Chop exchanges, suplexes and both men putting the other through hell. Each favored their backs at different points, which made sense with all the punishment and suplexes both we dolling out. This definitely felt like it could go either way and that’s always a great vibe. Cobb never hit Tour of the Islands, so it was well protected.

Winner: Ishii via Vertical Spike Brainbuster

Rating: ****

 

3. WWE Extreme Rules: United States Championship: AJ Styles vs Ricochet (c)

Snippet From Mitchell’s Coverage:

Styles goes to suplex but Ricochet counters with a swinging neckbreaker! But Styles still lifts Ricochet for a brain buster! Cover, TWO!! Both men are down again but fans know “This is Awesome!” Styles slowly gets up and drags Ricochet over to a corner. Styles hauls Ricochet up top but Ricochet fights back. They brawl and Styles rocks Ricochet. Styles climbs up to join Ricochet but Ricochet fights back again. Ricochet slaps Styles off the top and adjusts position. But Styles is right back up, only to get a hotshot from Ricochet! Ricochet climbs back up, springboard shooting star! Cover, but Styles has a foot under the rope! Anderson points it out and the count is off!

Ricochet can’t believe how close he was, but he vows to wrap it up. He drags Styles to a drop zone, climbs up top, but Anderson runs over. Ricochet leaps over him and BOOTS Anderson down! But this distraction allows Gallows to trip Ricochet! Ricochet is stuck on the corner and Styles takes advantage, with an IMPLODING STYLES CLASH! Cover, Styles wins!

Winner: Styles via Avalanche Styles Clash

Rating: **** 1/4

 

Honorable Mentions:

NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: KENTA vs Hiroshi Tanahashi
Winner: KENTA via Go 2 Sleep
Rating: *** 3/4
WWE Extreme Rules: SmackDown Tag Team Titles: The New Day vs Heavy Machinery vs Rowan & Daniel Bryan (c)
Winner: New Day via Midnight Hour
Rating: *** 3/4
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Block B: Juice Robinson vs Shingo Takagi
Winner: Juice via Pulp Friction
Rating: *** 3/4
AEW Fight for the Fallen: CIMA vs Kenny Omega
Winner: Omega via One Winged Angel
Rating: *** 3/4
WWE Extreme Rules: Raw Tag Team Titles: The Revival (c) vs The Usos
Winner: Revival via Shatter Machine
Rating: *** 1/2
AEW Fight for the Fallen: SCU vs Lucha Brothers
Winner: Lucha Bros via Spike Fear Factor
Rating: *** 1/2
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: EVIL vs Kota Ibushi
Winner: EVIL via Everything is Evil
Rating: *** 1/2
WWE Extreme Rules: Undertaker & Roman Reigns vs Shane McMahon & Drew McIntyre
Winner: Undertaker via Tombstone
Rating: *** 1/2
WWE Extreme Rules: Intercontinental Championship Match: Shinsuke Nakamura vs Finn Balor:
Winner: Nakamura via Kinshasa
Rating: *** 1/4
WWE Extreme Rules: Aleister Black vs Cesaro
Winner: Black via Black Mass
Rating: *** 1/4
AEW Fight for the Fallen: Jimmy Havoc, Darby Allin & Joey Janela vs MJF, Shawn Spears & Sammy Guevara
Winner: Spears via Death Valley Driver
Rating: *** 1/4
WWE Extreme Rules: WWE Championship: Kofi Kingston (c) vs Samoa Joe
Winner: Kofi via Trouble in Paradise
Rating: *** 1/4
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: Bad Luck Fale vs Lance Archer
Winner: Archer via EBD Claw Hold
Rating: ***
WWE Raw: 2 out of 3 Falls: The Miz & The Usos vs The Revival & Elias
Winner: Miz & Usos 2-1
Rating: ***
AEW Fight for the Fallen: Kip Sabian vs Hangman Page
Winner: Page via Deadeye
Rating: ***
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Block B: Jon Moxley vs Taichi
Winner: Moxley via Deathrider
Rating: ***
IMPACT!: Kiera Hogan vs Jordynne Grace vs Madison Rayne
Winner: Grace via Grace Driver
Rating: ***
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Yoshinobu Kanemaru, Minoru Suzuki & Taichi vs Tetsuya Naito, Shingo Takagi & BUSHI
Winner: Suzuki via Gotch Style Piledriver
Rating: ***
WWE SmackDown: Shinsuke Nakamura vs Finn Balor
Winner: Shinsuke via Kinshasa
Rating: ***
NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Minoru Suzuki & Zack Sabre Jr vs Kazuchika Okada & YOSHI-HASHI
Winner: Sabre via Cross Arm Breaker
Rating: ***
WWE Extreme Rules: Extreme Rules Winners Take All Raw Women’s & Universal Championships Match: Becky Lynch (c) & Seth Rollins (c) vs Baron Corbin & Lacey Evans
Winner: Rollins via Stomp
Rating: ***

 

2. NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 3: Block A: Kazuchika Okada vs Zack Sabre Jr

From My Analysis:
Okada has the amazing ability to wrestler his opponent’s style of match. Sabre stretched him and tried to break him, but Okada fended off every attempt. We saw numerous counters, submissions and great wrestling. Okada’s Rolling Rainmaker to set up the traditional Rainmaker is always a fun transition. Awesome match.

Winner: Okada via Rainmaker

Rating: **** 1/4

 

1. NJPW G1 Climax 29 Night 2: Block B: Jay White vs Hirooki Goto

From My Analysis:
Jay White hasn’t taken Goto seriously, like the better portion of New Japan fans. White put on some great heel work, from his interactions with Gedo, to being a step ahead with a beaming shit eating grin the whole time. Goto showed the heart and resolve that he used to be well known for. Most people who became fans over the last 4 years or so, know Goto as a good hand but to never accomplish anything really. This could finally be a return to the form he had a while ago when he was considered on equal footing with Nakamura and Tanahashi. Damn great effort from both wrestlers.

Winner: Goto via GTR

Rating: **** 1/4

 

Thoughts:

Well even though I missed the Evolve show because of having plans on Saturday, I think I caught enough of the quality shows. The Rhodes’ story is something I’ve been finding entertaining, but watching Jay White’s character evolve is great too. So my vote will go to Jay White vs Hirooki Goto.

Goto showing a possible resurgence and White continuing to grow are all great things so early in this G1 Climax tournament.


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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