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G1 Climax 28 Ratings and Joint Review

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Well we have reached the end of the road. G1 Climax 28, Grand Finals night.

Hiroshi Tanahashi won the A-ce Block and Kota Ibushi won our hearts…and…well…the B Block. Both have some history facing each other, and both are known to be more than competent wrestlers, so we’re looking at a great match.

Now it should be noted that Mathew and I will do this article jointly, similarly to how we did the Finals of the Champion Carnival.Also in an amusing turn of events, we both predicted this finals, but we’re rooting for the other’s block winner.

So if Tanahashi wins that would make me a perfect 3-0 in the tournaments we’ve covered, for the eventual winner coming from my block ( Marufuji won Champion Carnival, Masato Yoshino won King of Gate).

With that, I’m okay being wrong if Tanahashi wins. So let’s get to the show.

 

Togi Makabe, Michael Elgin & Tomoaki Honma vs Yuji Nagata,  Ayato Yoshida & Shota Umino

Average match, glad to see Honma again, but nothing special – Mathew

Yeah, basically what Mathew said, basic match, nothing super impressive. It is nice to see Honma back for his technically third match since returning from injury. But this was just a standard Young Lion opening match.

Winner: Makabe via King Kong Knee Drop

Rating: **

 

Toa Henare vs Bad Luck Fale

This was a glorified squash match. Henare got in a good headbutt, but this just went quick.

Henare dead – Mathew

Winner: Fale via Bad Luck Fall

Rating: *

 

Taichi & Iizuka vs Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI

Taichi got introduced and they kept cutting off his music with Iizuka’s music, so that messed up his singing idol gimmick.  Iizuka doesn’t come out with Taichi, and instead jumps the CHAOS members form behind.

The match was fine, if anything it proves that Taichi would’ve been a better addition to the G1 than YOSHI-HASHI, since HASHI eats the pin.

Decent match, Miho Abe is gorgeous, HASHI needs to go away, and what does this all mean for Taichi? – Mathew

Winner: Taichi via Last Ride Powerbomb

Rating: ** 1/4

 

Cody & Hangman Page vs Juice Robinson & David Finlay

Cody’s first match since San Francisco, so he can’t really lose, can he?

Juice took the hand wrapping off before the match started, and wasn’t shy about throwing hands. Finlay did his usual thing, where it’s never quit enough to get the job done. Page blind sided Juice with a Buckshot Lariat, before everyone started wiping each other out with signatures. Cody finishes the match, countering the Pulp Friction into a Vertebreaker.

Solid match, everyone pulled their weight, except for Finlay. Cody decided to cut in line for the US Title, rude. – Mathew

Winner: Cody via Vertebreaker

Rating: ** 1/2

 

NEVER 6 Man Tag Team Championships: Tanga Loa, Tama Tonga & Taiji Ishimori vs Marty Scurll & The Young Bucks

Decent match, felt more like an ROH match than New Japan. Not really sure how I feel about Taiji’s first belt being this one, but the blatant disregard for the belts at the end was fantastic. – Mathew

This wasn’t supposed to be a title match, but Tama talked some smack and Matt Jackson asked the President to make it official. So even though the Tongans are one wrong move away being suspended, now they get a title shot.

When we get down to the match, it was paced out like most ROH Trios matches, and never really got out of that gear. We saw a few more Super Kicks than usual, but a bunch each man’s signature moves. Double Sharpshooter into Chicken Wing spot popped the crowd pretty hard.

Tama makes the blind tag, so when the Bucks go for the Meltzer Driver on Taiji, the giant cluster happens. Tama slinks off into the corner to draw less attention, but eventually lands the Gun Stun for the win.

Winner: Tama via Gun Stun

Rating: ***

 

Minoru Suzuki, El Desperado, Yoshinobu Kanemaru & Zack Sabre Jr vs Tetsuya Naito, EVIL, SANADA & Bushi

Well the drama between these clubs goes back a few months when Suzuki and Naito had their match for the Intercontinental belt.  This is just being furthered along by Zack Sabre ruining Naito’s chances to win the G1 Climax. So this should be entertaining.

Before the bell rings, Suzuki-Gun jumps Los Ingobernables de Japon and they spill to the outside. Naito and Suzuki have a chair based stand off and from there on we get the usual multi-man match. Each person comes in, does their thing, but with the tempers flaring.

The match ends with SANADA dodging Kanemaru’s Whiskey Mist and slapping on the Skull End while the rest of the members are on the outside going crazy.

Bit of a cluster, sloppy at points but it told a story and did what it needed to. Young Lion Lives Matter – Mathew

Winner: SANADA via Skull End

Rating: *** 1/4

 

Jay White, Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano vs Kenny Omega, Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi

Jay hasn’t played well with SHO and YOH, but how will he fair with Ishii and Yano? On the flip side, Omega could use a little momentum after 3 straight singles losses, included a singles loss to Ishii.

Entertaining, Pieter’s dance was the best part, but did a good job at what it was supposed to do. – Mathew

Like Mathew said, at one point in the match all six men are in and the Bullet Club members do the Row Boat spot, but Yujiro asks Pieter to come in an help. So she decides to get in the middle of all six men and urge them along by spinning and dancing all sexy. Yujiro gets infatuated first which allows Ishii to roll of the ring, and the rest of the men just stop and stare at Pieter. Kenny decides to be the party pooper and slap sense into his teammates and escort Pieter out of the ring.

Aside from that, we had a few good spots with Omega/Owens doing a Superkick/Pump Kick combo on Ishii, and good team work on both ends. Eventually Owens and Ishii are alone in the ring, Owens goes for the Package Piledriver, fails and gets a Vertical Drop Brainbuster for his troubles.

Winner: Ishii via Vertical Drop Brainbuster

Rating: *** 1/2

 

Kushida, Rey Mysterio & Pro Wrestler Sengokuenbu vs Kazuchika Okada, SHO & YOH

We have the debut of an unknown samurai wrestler from the Sengoku (Warring States) period of Japan. Time traveler, or just a big fan, he makes his appearance to help out Rey Mysterio and Kushida against the CHAOS members.

Best tag match on the show, everyone delivered, very entertaining. Sengokuenbu was the highlight, now we just need to figure out who he could be. Give us Mysterio vs Liger already, dammit! – Mathew

The match saw a lot of all three guys getting in good offense, a tease for a Double 619, that Okada stopped with his picture perfect Dropkick. But stereo Tope con Hilos at the end, set up Mysterio to get YOH into position for the 619 and West Coast Pop, to pick up the pinfall.

Nothing crazy happened during or after, just a good ole fashioned fun match with no storyline implications, just entertainment.

Winner: Mysterio via 619

Rating: *** 3/4

 

G1 Climax 28 Finals: Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Kota Ibushi

So these two have put on some great matches in the past. Does Ibushi avenge his loss at Power Struggle 2017? Does the Ace have one more run left in him? Enough hyperbole, time to find out.

I thought the match was just simply incredible. The story of the match, the intensity and emotion of it all really delivered to give us the perfect way to end the G1 Climax overall. It showed Ibushi is on another level compared to his previous runs in New Japan and can be everything they look for if he ever signs a fucking contract! Tanahashi winning is the right call in my opinion and I really hope he’ll be the one that breaks the WK curse and beats Omega for the championship, he definitely deserves that one final run.- Mathew

Mathew’s sentiment is right on the level with mine. But we also saw some fantastic spots in this match. Ibushi countered a Sliding Dropkick from Tanahashi on the apron, and Double Footstomped perfectly on his chest, a quickly snapped off Avalanche Frankensteiner as well as his new Double Knees Moonsault. Tanahashi was in usual form also, with a couple Short Arm Slingblades mixed in with two Twist and Shout Neckbreakers.

Throughout the match, the story and struggle was painted plainly on both men’s faces. Ibushi kept trying to hold back his emotions, until the spirit of Shinsuke Nakamura overcame him. A few antagonistic kicks to the head, mixed with two or three Bomaye Knees from different angles. Hell Ibushi even hit his Outside-In Deadlift German Suplex on Tanahashi, but only for 2 counts.

Tanahashi had a hauntingly similar sequence to the Power Struggle match, but instead of 2 High Fly Flows, this time it took 3 for Tanahashi to finish the job. A momentous occasion of course, but it should be noted that Kota never hit the KamiGoye. For those who don’t know, KameGoye means “Beyond God”, and he named it such because of Tanahashi. It was the move he was going to use to finally surpass God, and God, to Kota Ibushi, is Tanahashi.

Not quite there yet for Kota, but words can’t adequately describe how amazing this match was.

Winner: Tanahashi via High Fly Flow

Rating: ******

Thoughts:

Tanahashi wins his third G1 Climax, and the winner comes from my block for the third time this year! Yes I know I picked Ibushi, but being wrong there, still kinda paid off. The match was tremendous, the undercard built like a normal New Japan show. So now we get to see when and where Jay White will challenge Tanahashi for the contract, and if Kazuchika Okada might make a challenge.

Even though all previous contract winners have lost at Wrestle Kingdom, we might finally see something change. Maybe Tanahashi wins, maybe he loses it before the big show. Guess we’ll just have to sit back and find out.


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Mitchell’s WWE NXT Report! (8/15/18)

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NXT cover image

It’s the last NXT before TakeOver: Brooklyn, and Kairi Sane warms up before challenging Women’s Championship, Shayna Baszler, in a MYC feud tiebreaker!

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Street Profits VS The Mighty; Street Profits win.
  • Kairi Sane VS Aliyah; Kairi wins.
  • Tyler Bate VS Roderick Strong; wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

WWE and NXT remember Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart.

 

The NXT Championship Match has changed!

After Tommaso Ciampa went after both Johnny Wrestling and Aleister Black as a way to get one over on both his archnemesis and his challenger, GM William Regal felt he had to make the match a Triple Threat for the title. History was going to be made, but then things had to be changed again. Aleister Black was attacked later that night, in the Full Sail parking lot! There were any number of suspects, from Johnny Gargano to the Undisputed Era, to even Kassius Ohno and a lurking Lars Sullivan. It is the most mysterious “Whodunnit” in NXT and WWE History! Who is the culprit behind robbing the fans of a Triple Threat in Brooklyn?

That mystery is to be left for later, as the NXT Championship will be a Last Man Standing Match! Ciampa and Gargano have already gone so far in their attempts get rid of the other. How much further will they go with the title on the line?

 

Street Profits VS The Mighty!

Angelo Dawkins & Montez Ford are back after Shane Thorne & Nick Miller cheated to win. TM61 has changed their names and their tactics, but the #CurseofGreatness is constant. Will Dawkins & Ford get a big win on their return? Or will they kneel before The Mighty?

We start with Ford and Miller, and Miller gets annoyed by how jovial Ford is. Miller knees low then clubs Ford on the back. He chops FOrd in a corner, then brings him over to tag in Thorne. Miller chops and Thorne stomps, but the fans cheer on the Profits. Thorne throws a European Uppercut and a headbutt, then scoops Ford. Ford slips out and Dawkins tags in. Ford whips and Dawkins runs Thorne up. The Profits Wakanda Forever, then Ford is the human weapon, back suplex splash! Miller runs in but Dawkins catches him, for Ford to play leap frog! The Profits control the ring while The Mighty regroup. Dawkins is ready for Thorne and counters punches with punches and even forearms. Thorne kicks low then chops. He whips but Dawkins reverses.

Dawkins misses his cyclone clothesline, but Thorne hits the sucker punch. Tag to Miller who ax handles Dawkins, then gives some ground ‘n’ pound. Cover, TWO, but Miller keeps on Dawkins by hooking his nose. Miller trash talks Ford before stomping Dawkins. He puts Dawkins on teh ropes for a choke and more hooking. The referee reprimands him but Thorne gets a cheap shot. Miller goes back to Dawkins, tags Thorne, and The Mighty double back suplex Dawkins down. Cover, TWO, but Thorne stomps Dawkins out. Dawkins gets to ropes, but Thorne drags him over to The Mighty’s corner. Tag to Miller and Miller clubs Dawkins. Miller brings Dawkins to the center with a chinlock. Fans rally up while Dawkins endures. Dawkins fights back with back elbows, then runs, and kicks MIller’s back drop away, only to walk into a SPINEBUSTER! Cover, TWO, but Miller keeps Dawkins isolated.

Tag to Thorne, and Miller puts Dawkins in a corner. Miller hits a clothesline, Thorne hits a running EuroUpper. Fans boo and jeer but The Mighty just soak it in. Thorne grinds Dawkins with a facelock, but fans rally up for the Profits. Dawkins gets up, fights back, but Thorne gives him a big EuroUpper. Thorne misses in the corner, and Dawkins crawls for Ford. Fans fire up, but Thorne grabs a foot. Dawkins shoves Thorne into Miller, then dodges Thorne for a hot tag to Ford! Ford is on fire as he rallies on both Aussies. He sunsets over Thorne to clothesline Miller out, then he clotheslines Thorne! Ford runs in but is put on the apron. He dodges and counters Thorne, then kicks Miller. Slingshot sunset flip, TWO!

Thorne gets a waistlock but he wipes out Miller. Thorne rolls Ford up and holds tights! TWO as Ford rolls it back, and now Ford holds tights! The Street Profits win!

Winners: The Street Profits, Montez Ford pinning

The Mighty got a taste of their own medicine! Ford & Dawkins get the camera man to give him their black solo cup, and now it’s a party! Will the Profits profit from besting The Mighty at their own game?

 

The Undisputed Era speak.

Roderick Strong can’t believe they’re facing Mustache Mountain again. And in Brooklyn of all places. Why are the British Strong Style boys doing this to themselves? The last time they faced the NXT Tag Team Champions, Trent Seven’s leg was almost torn off by Kyle O’Reilly. And O’Reilly has no problem doing it all over again. But they think it’s hilarious Seven’s claiming to be 100%. If that’s 100%, the Undisputed Era is 1000%.

Then there’s the War Raiders, who want the champions after Brooklyn. But the Undisputed Era aren’t just any team. Between them and the Mustache Mountain duo, those four “idiots” aren’t clever at all. The clever ones are right here. Come Brooklyn, the titles stay where they belong. And that’s the beauty of it all: Brooklyn was where the Undisputed Era debuted. This will be the anniversary of their dominance. Adam Cole won’t hide from Ricochet, either. They’re going to show everyone that this is their era, and #ThatisUndisputed.

 

Kairi Sane VS Aliyah!

The Pirate Princess prepares for another rematch with The Queen of Spades, Shayna Baszler. Kairi won the inaugural Mae Young Classic finals, but Shayna won on her way to the top of the Women’s Division. Before this match, Shayna was spotted giving the Cat’s Meow some advice about how to face Kairi. Will Aliyah be able to use that advice and bring Kairi down before Brooklyn? Or will Kairi surprise Shayna before ever getting in the ring with her?

Speaking of, here comes Shayna herself. The NXT Women’s Champion wants a closer look at Kairi as she joins commentary. She’s done this before as a way to psych out her contenders, but Kairi shrugs it off. The bell rigns and she ties up with Aliyah.

Aliyah powers Kairi towards a corner but Kairi turns it around. Kairi backs off at 4, but Aliyah shoves her. Kairi shoves back, then chops Aliyah in the corner. Aliyah uses ropes as a defense, but Kairi glares at Shayna. Aliyah goes after Kairi, telling her she can’t worry about Shayna now. She whips Kairi but Kairi goes up and around to a school girl, that she makes into a stretch muffler! Kairi wants Shayna to know she can play submissions, too! Aliyah manages a ropebreak, and Kairi lets her go. Shayna isn’t scared as Aliyah throws furious forearms and uppercuts on Kairi. Aliyah kicks but Kairi catches it to a dragon whip takedown. Kairi runs, for the blockbuster! Then another!

Kairi whips but Aliyah reverses. Kairi stops herself, turns around and SPEARS Aliyah with the Interceptor. She fires up and stomps the plank. Fans fire up with her, and Kairi runs in for the Sliding D! Aliyah rolls to the drop zone while Kairi goes up top. Anchors Away, InSane elbow! But just as Shayna says the Princess has no killer instinct, Kairi goes back up! And she hits another InSane Elbow! That’s not good enough to impress Shayna? Then Kairi goes up again, for a THIRD InSane Elbow! Cover, Kairi lets Aliyah UP! Shayna is rather surprised, but perhaps a little upset, too. Kairi puts on the Anchor Lock! Shayna stands on the announce table to stare Kairi in the eyes, as Kairi stares and poitns back. Aliyah taps, Kairi wins!

Winner: Kairi Sane, by submission

If Kairi hasn’t gotten Shayna to eat her words yet, Kairi surely looks to in Brooklyn. Who will win this third go between inaugural MYC finalists?

 

NXT takes a look at Adam Cole VS Ricochet.

How has it been? He led the Undisputed Era in a raid on the NXT Tag Team and Championship matches. He led them to victory in the first ever NXT War Games match. And he’s the inaugural North American Champion. “Adam Cole cannot be stopped.” Cole and his cohorts have run roughshod over everyone. However, there’s One And Only King of Flight. Ricochet vows to change this industry forever, match after match. He can do things no one else can, and was almost the North American Champion if not for Adam Cole.

“There are three types of superstars: there’s good, there’s great, and there’s special.” In Cole’s mind, Ricochet is good, maybe even great. But he’s not special. Cole is special. Ricochet says it’s not about good, great or special, it’s about being better. He calls Cole out for being a coward, but Cole calls himself the man who makes the belt. Ricochet wants Cole to be a fighting champion, Cole just wants to stay champion. Cole will show he’s better, but Ricochet doesn’t think that’s possible. Whose name will be on those golden side plates when it’s all said and done?

 

Velveteen Dream heads to the ring!

The Patrick Clark Experience ended up all wet after his poolside summit with The Top One Percent. Dream wishes to speak ahead of his #TopOnePercentDreamMatch. “That’s funny, you cheer for the Dream.” You know what else is funny? EC3. EC3 is so smart, clever, and “oh so charming”. The fans chant “NX3!” for EC3, which annoys Dream a bit. But just like the fans, EC3 had the Dream’s curiosity. But now EC3 just has something he couldn’t buy if he tried. He has something that no one should want, he has the Dream’s attention. EC3 made an enemy out of Dream. “And this Saturday”, TakeOver: Brooklyn, it’ll be #DreamOver. But wait, here comes EC3 himself!

Ethan Carter III stares Dream down as he walks down the ramp. He has a mic of his own to speak. “So this is what it sounds like when doves cry?” Sick fanny pack, by the way. Fans chant “Fanny Pack!” while EC3 gets in the ring. EC3 knows what Dream’s up to, so don’t. He’s trying to get in EC3’s head, but EC3 lives in people’s heads. He paves parking lots in people’s heads, he builds theme restaurants in people’s heads, he builds condos in people’s heads. Dream’s head is a fixer upper, but EC3 will make that into profit. The time for talking is over, the time for fighting has come. And EC3 will add Dream to his streak of #VictoryAfterVictory after victory after victory–

After victory, yeah, Dream gets it! But there WON’T be an “after victory” after this. Dream vows that Brooklyn won’t have EC3’s hand raised. The only thing on EC3’s mind and the fans’ minds is #DreamOver. Fans troll Dream with “Fanny Pack!” EC3 tells Dream, while taking his jacket off, is that they don’t need to wait for Brooklyn. Dream responds as he takes off the fanny pack. They’re doing this now?! Dream takes off his jewelry while EC3 rolls up his sleeve. Dream fakes a bad shoulder, to then throw his vest! He unloads on EC3, but EC3 slips out of teh fireamn’s carry to give back some haymakers. EC3 lifts Dream, for the One Percent TKO! The Dream is down and dazed, will he be the other kind of over after Brooklyn?

 

NXT shares WWE Now’s coverage of the Aleister Black attack.

Cathy Kelly takes us on an indepth look at the footage NXT cameras managed to capture. The suspects are in order of their appearance as first, Johnny Gargano walks back inside the building as William Regal heads out. Second are the entire Undisputed Era, peeling out with their cars. Lars Sullivan is in a yellow shirt walking in the distance. Heavy Machinery are in the area as they’re documenting this for themselves, though they seem unlikely as they’re tag team competitors. However, next comes Kassius Ohno as he sits with Candice LeRae and Kairi Sane. Next come Wesley Blake and his new pals in Steve Cutler and Jaxson Ryker, who some know as calling themselves the Forgotten Sons, are headed out. The Finest, Kona Reeves is also there, but he shoos the cameras away.

There’s also Ricochet, who had himself only recovered from the Undisputed Era’s attack, on his way out. There’s also Velveteen Dream upset in the background while Shayna Baszler passes by, and then Cezar Bononi, Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel are around. The latter three might have done it to make an opening in the title scene for themselves, but that is anyone’s guess. Of course, there’s Tommaso Ciampa, where he and Gargano are both most likely given the Triple Threat status at the time. Last but not least is EC3. So many suspects with so many different reasons, who do you think did in the Dutch Destroyer?

 

NXT takes a look back at Gargano VS Ciampa.

They were team DIY, but paranoia and jealousy led to them breaking apart. Gargano’s goal became the NXT Championship, but guess who got there first? Hope is lost and faith is broken as Ciampa ends Gargano’s fairy tale. Gargano won the Unsanctioned Match to get his title back, but Ciampa won the Street Fight with his hands cuffed together. Ciampa used that to become #1 Contender, and then he used Gargano’s grudge as his opening to get the title. Gargano admitted his mistakes, which Aleister Black made him pay for with a Black Mass. But just as Aleister and Gargano were going to settle their score, Ciampa came in to mess it all up. Just as it looked as if this was truly Ciampa’s NXT, he gave Gargano a way back in.

The Triple Threat would’ve been Ciampa having to fight his past and his present, but then the mystery attack on Aleister complicated things again. Now it comes down to DIY’s Civil War one more time, and perhaps one last time, in a Last Man Standing Match! But understand the story: this isn’t Gargano’s story book ending, it’s Ciampa’s! One last shot, one last battle, and both sides vow to do whatever it takes to end it. Who will be standing at the end of TakeOver: Brooklyn?

 

 


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Mitchell’s WWE 205 Live Report! (8/14/18)

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205 Live = Cruiserweight Division

Before defending his Cruiserweight Championship at Summerslam, Cedric Alexander goes against Jack Gallagher to prepare himself for Drew Gulak!

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Lio Rush VS Akira Tozawa; Lio wins.
  • Hideo Itami VS Trent Newman; Hideo Itami wins, by referee stoppage.
  • Cedric Alexander VS Jack Gallagher; Alexander wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

Drake Maverick sets up tonight’s action.

The last 205 Live before Summerslam and we get two great matches. The Stamina Monster has wanted a rematch with The Man of the Hour since losing to him weeks ago. Maverick honors that request tonight, and now Lio must make time for Tozawa. Will Lio stay undefeated while backing up all his big talk?

Then in the main event, the Soul of 205 Live takes on the Extraordinary Gentleman, but it’ll be 1v1 as THE Brian Kendrick & Drew Gulak are banned from ringside. Gallagher got the better of Alexander after the champ’s match with Kendrick, but will he be able to do it all alone? Or will the Ungentlemanly Alliance choose not honor the orders of their GM to give their leader the lead going into Sunday?

 

Lio Rush VS Akira Tozawa!

The 23 Year Old Piece of Gold has been on a roll since showing up in the Cruiserweight Division, with his biggest win being over the former champion. But he hasn’t been all that humble about it, as he tells Greenville they’re “lucky” to be stuck in this “garbage city, in this embarrassment of a state”, yet still getting the privilege of watching him, the Future of 205 Live and WWE. Lio says with all due respect to his opponent, one of the best in the world, just notice how Lio said “one of”. That’s because Tozawa takes on THE best, Mr. Lio-5 Live. Tozawa should’ve just kept Lio’s name out of his mouth, “because now, he’s gonna Feel… The Rush.” Tozawa makes his entrance, and we begin!

The Man of the Hour needs time to take off his watch. Tozawa doesn’t give him that time and clubs away in a corner. Then he comes back for body shots. Lio shoves him away, and gets between ropes, but Tozawa is on him again. Tozawa swings but Lio dodges. Lio gets to the apron, slips back inside, then runs, to then run sideways. Tozawa still gets him witha huricanrana, but Lio asks for time! Lio takes his watch off, to throw it at Tozawa. Tozawa catches it, as well as blocks Lio’s boot. Tozawa tosses the watch up, Lio panics as he catches it, but he gets Tozawa’s spinning roundhouse! Lio ends up outside the ring, and Tozawa builds speed. Fans “AH! AH!” but Lio gets clear.

Tozawa doesn’t dive, but he does pursue Lio. He clobbers Lio on the ramp! Then he brings Lio back to the ring. Lio handspring kicks Tozawa down on the return! He catches his breath while Tozawa gets up. Lio runs and slides, but Tozawa dodges. Tozawa feints the chop to hit the jab! Lio staggers, but Tozawa puts him back in the ring. Tozawa climbs up, and hits a missile dropkick! Lio flounders but falls, Tozawa covers, TWO! Tozawa stomps Lio, following him into a corner. Tozawa positions him but Lio grabs Tozawa’s feet. They scrapon the mat, and Tozawa stomps Lio out. Lio pushes Tozawa into the post! Then back suplexes him down. Cover, ONE, but Lio keeps on Tozawa with a chinlock and punches. Lio rakes Tozawa’s eyes while also putting on a camel clutch. Fans rally up for Tozawa, and Tozawa gets up with “AH! AH!”

Tozawa fights out but Lio rocks him with a forearm. Lio whips but Tozawa reverses. Lio keeps going and sunset flips, but Tozawa rolls through to Penalty Kick and back senton! But Lio gets his knees up! Tozawa writhes to a corner, and Lio brings him up for shoulders to the stomach. Lio turns Tozawa around to ram shoulders into his back. Lio snapmares Tozawa then wraps on a chinlock and body scissors. Fans rally as Tozawa endures. Tozawa works his way up and out but Lio holds on. Lio hits Tozawa with elbows, then whips. Tozawa boots Lio back, then runs, but Lio turns it around. Lio’s boot is blocked, but he lands on his feet out of the flip. They both slide under the other, but Tozawa boots Lio out. Tozawa builds speed, to DIVE! The Tozawa Torpedo hits its target!

Tozawa is fired up, as are the fans. He brings Lio back to the ring, then runs in, tilt-o-whirl into the Octopus Stretch! Lio endures as Tozawa twists his arm and squeezes his head. Lio drops to a knee, but doesn’t give up. He powers up and pops Tozawa off for a cover, TWO! Tozawa runs but Lio rolls him for his own spinning roundhouse! Cover, TWO! Lio grows frustrated, this match has taken much longer than most of his matches. He drags Tozawa over to the drop zone, then climbs up top. Tozawa gets up and uppercuts Lio! Tozawa climbs up to join Lio, and fans “AH! AH!” as he prepares the superplex. Lio resists, then trips Tozawa up! Tozawa hits buckle on the way down, then Lio hits the Final Hour frog splash! Cover, Lio wins again!

Winner: Lio Rush, by pinfall

He came to collect, and so far he has collected win after win. The Man of the Hour is still undefeated since joining 205 Live, will he find himself in a title match in no time?

 

WWE and 205 Live take a look at the Cruiserweight Championship’s #1 Contender, Drew Gulak.

The Philly Fury is as focused as ever, and is ready to use his perfected ground game to show Cedric Alexander and all the WWE Universe that his way is the best way. It’s been a long journey for Gulak, but he knows Alexander has never faced anyone quite as dangerous as this Drew Gulak. To Gulak, Alexander the “loner” has become “complacent” and “entitled” as champion. Gulak will represent the Division as the best submission specialist in all of WWE as well as an entire generation as the right example for all those to come. The Cruiserweight Crusader vows to put the GuLock on Alexander, promises Alexander will tap out, and we will have a #Better205Live.

 

Backstage interview with Drake Maverick.

The 205 Live GM speaks on the medical status of Mustafa Ali. After last week’s match up, Ali was evaluated and fortunately has only been dealing with extreme exhaustion. Ali will recover, but Maverick feels some guilt towards it. Ali is the Heart of 205 Live and had quite the strong line-up of matches from taking on Buddy Murphy, Drew Gulak and Hideo Itami. “Every man has his limits, and he’s come to the end of his.” Therefore, Ali will not compete until Maverick is sure Ali is 100%. When will that be? And who will be champion when Ali returns to try for the title again?

 

Hideo Itami VS Trent Newman!

Speaking of Mustafa Ali, the man who claims he has broken the Heart of 205 Live is in action again. The Innovator of the GTS takes pride in being heartless, and looks to keep rolling towards another title shot. The bell rings, and Itami dares Newman to come in. Newman does and he gets haymakers and kicks, as well as European Uppercuts. Itami kicks Newman in the chest, then bumps him off buckles. Fans boo Itami and cheer Newman, but Itami demands respect. Newman gives Itami a back elbow instead, then a boot. Newman tries but can’t roll Itami up, and Itami SLAPS Newman. Itami drags Newman up, whips him, then runs him over with a clobbering clothesline. He smirks as he brings Newman up for a strike fest. The back hand drops Newman, Itami covers, but he lets up!

Fans boo more, but Itami drags Newman up for a Falcon Arrow. Cover, but Itami again picks Newman up. Itami is having too much fun beating up Newman. He kicks away on Newman in a corner, then goes corner to corner for that deadly dropkick! Itami gives it again, then wants a third. The referee stops Itami, Newman is out cold! The bell rings, it’s referee stoppage, Itami wins.

Winner: Hideo Itami, by referee stoppage

The match is mercifully over, and Itami has the referee raise his hand. Itami is all smiles, but will he be smiling when Ali eventually comes for revenge?

But wait, Itami isn’t over! He gives Newman the GTS Mk. II! Itami demands respect, but shows no mercy. How long until he has another chance at the Cruiserweight Championship? Or will he be kicked out of the Cruiserweight Division for being so disrespectful?

 

WWE and 205 Live take a look at the Cruiserweight Champion himself, Cedric Alexander.

The Soul of 205 Live, the Carolina Kid, knows that “Summerslam is the biggest party of the summer.” Alexander has trained harder than ever before. He knows Gulak is dangerous, and he has both Kendrick & Gallagher by his side, it only makes Gulak that much more unpredictable. But Alexander is ready, he’s always ready. That’s what teh Age of Alexander is all about. If you’re always ready, you never have to worry about surprises. Gulak talks, but Alexander gets things done. Alexander hasn’t lost in 2018 and all his matches have been title matches. Alexander bleeds purple, and is more dedicated than anyone else on 205 Live. If Gulak wants a #Better205Live, he better show everyone he’s better than Alexander. Gulak can try to put on the GuLock and make Alexander tap out, because once the Lumbar Check connects, it’s over.

 

Drake Maverick meets with Tony Nese & Buddy Murphy.

The Premier Athlete & Cruiserweight Juggernaut are congratulated on their tag team victory over Lucha House Party, and a pinfall over former champion, Kalisto. Unfortunately, Maverick knows it was thanks to Murphy’s distract that it happened. The referee’s decision is final, obviously, but LHS are not happy. Therefore, there’s a rematch in a match that won’t require tags at all. Murphy & Nese VS Lucha House Party happens in a Tornado Tag Match. Maverick’s the boss. Nese & Murphy seem alright with this decision, will they again get the better of Kalisto & Dorado?

 

Cedric Alexander VS Jack Gallagher!

The Extraordinary Gentleman has become the Ungentle Man over the last year, and has had his equally brutal allies alongside him. However, he won’t have THE Brian Kendrick or Drew Gulak in his corner tonight, so does he stand a chance against a determined Alexander?

The bell rings and the two circle. Gallagher stays by the ropes, and uses them as protection when Alexander comes close. He does it more to troll Alexander, and it starts to get to the champ. Gallagher takes his time having his fun with Alexander, then the tie up. Alexander puts Gallagher on the ropes, but Gallagher turns it around. Kendrick and Gulak watch backstage as Gallagher brings Alexander out. Alexander reverses to a backslide, ONE, Gallagher grabs Alexander in a small package, ONE. Alexander rolls Gallagher, ONE, and Gallagher Mahistrols. ONE, they roll but Gallagher gets more covers. Alexander keeps kicking out, then lifts Gallagher in a fireman’s carry. Gallagher slips out, then gets to the corner for his Extraordinary Headstand. He taunts Alexander, then hops over him.

Alexander rolls under Gallagher to handspring headscissor then dropkick Gallagher out. Alexander builds speed, but Gallagher crawls under the ring. Gallagher appears on the other side and attacks from behind! Gallagher throws heavy hands, then stomps him. Alexander hits back but Gallagher knees and uppercuts. Gallagher headbutts the stomach, but Alexander tosses him out! Alexander runs, and dropkicks Gallagher back down. Alexander drags Gallagher up for a swift chop, then shouts “No one can help you now!” But Gallagher helps himself as he rams Alexander into a post! Gallagher refreshes the ring count, then embraces the heat. He fetches Alexander, clubs him in the neck, then drives in an elbow.

Gallagher puts Alexander in the ring, then wraps on a chinlock. He thrashes Alexander around, then wrenches the neck. Fans rally up for Alexander, but Gallagher rakes the eyes and scrapes the face. Gallagher hits a dropkick to the back of the head, covers, TWO. Gallagher throws Alexander to a corner, but Alexander fights back with chops. Alexander is powered to the corner, and Gallagher rains down rights. Gallagher snapmares and grinds his shoe into Alexander’s face. Gallagher wipes his feet while taunting Alexander. He stomps Alexander while fans boo and jeer. Gallagher stretches Alexander’s arm and grinds a shoe into Alexander’s head. Alexander endures as Gallagher pulls his arm all around.

Fans rally up and Alexander gets back up. Alexander fights with forearms, but Gallagher gives him a neckbreaker. Cover, TWO, but Gallagher is right on him again. ONE, then ONE again, and Gallagher grows frustrated. Gallagher clubs Alexander against the ropes, then brings Alexander back for a straitjacket stretch. Fans rally for Alexander but Alexander is bent all the way back! Alexander gets off Gallagher’s knees, only to end up in a body scissor. He gets out of that, but Gallagher still has the arms. Gallagher shifts to a cravat, but fans keep rallying. Alexander gets up and scoops Gallagher, only for Gallagher to counter with a snapmare! They get up again, Alexander scoops but Gallagher again snapmares. Gallagher thrashes Alexander around, but Alexander endures.

Fans continue to rally, and Alexander tries another scoop. Gallagher blocks it, so Alexander gives him an atomic drop. Alexander snap suplexes, then honors Eddie with a second amigo! Alexander gets the third one up but Galagher slips out. Gallagher’s boot is blocked, and Alexander rocks him with an elbow! Alexander runs, handsprings, Neuralizer enziguri! Cover, TWO! Gallagher checks his jaw while Alexander checks his neck. Fans fire up for Alexander as he brings Gallagher up. Gallagher blocks the lift and drives in elbows. Alexander shoves him into buckles, but then is put on the apron. He boots Gallagher away, and springboards for the flying clothesline! Cover, TWO! Alexander gets his arms moving while Gallagher gets to ropes.

Alexander chops Gallagher, then whips. Gallagher holds ropes to elbow Alexander. Gallagher runs for a hotshot bulldog! Then he goes up for a flying knee drop! Cover, TWO! Gallagher goes after Alexander with a crossface! Alexander resists, his neck is already hurting, but Gallagher gets a grip! Alexander endures, reaches but can’t get to ropes. He rolls Gallagher over for a cover, TWO! Gallagher is relieved he survived, but he grimaces as he glares down at Alexander. He throws a haymaker, then another. Fans rally for Alexander, and Alexander chops. Gallagher forearms, but so does Alexander. Gallagher gives a EuroUpper, but Alexander gives a back kick. Alexander lifts, but Gallagher pops out into a guillotine!

Gallagher uses his weight to pull Alexander down. Alexander claws Gallagher’s back but he fades. Alexander gets a second wind, Michinoku Driver outta nowhere! Both men are down and the ref starts a 10 count. Alexander crawls while Gallagher grabs ropes. The cuont reaches 7 but they both stand. Gallagher is on teh apron, Alexander walks over. Gallagher slips back in to push Alexander out. Alexander boots back then springboards, but Gallagher gets under, for the Gentleman’s Dropkick! Cover, ROPEBREAK! Gallagher is shocked, but he won’t give up. He drags Alexander up for a gut wrench, into a powerbomb! Cover, TWO! Both men are down from exhaustion, but Gallagher sits up from frustration. Gallagher takes aim from the corner, runs out but into a SPANISH FLY! Cover, Alexander wins!

Winner: Cedric Alexander, by pinfall

The champion toughs it out this close to his defense and gets a win. However, with all the damage done to that neck, is he just ripe for the picking when it comes to Gulak’s submission style?

But as Alexander celebrates on the stage, clutching both his bad neck and title belt, Kendrick blindsides him! The ban from the arena was only for the match, after all. Kendrick drags Alexander back to the ring, but Alexander fights him off. Gallagher comes in but gets forearms, too. Alexander clotheslines Gallagher out, but Kendrick returns. Kendrick throws Alexander, but Alexander slips out to hit the Lumbar Check! But here’s Gulak! And here’s the GuLOCK! He has Alexander down with the body scissors and dragon sleeper. Alexander is already out by the time the referees appear. Gulak lets Alexander go to pick up the Cruiserweight Championship. Fans boo as he sets it on Alexander, so that the champ can hold onto it for him. Gulak vows he’ll give us all a #Better205Live, will he do so by bringing an end to the #AgeofAlexander?

 


 

My Thoughts:

Now here’s a really good go-home. Granted, 205 Live is only an hour, but they use every minute wisely. Opening with Lio VS Tozawa was great, both men are so fast and matched each other so well. I’m surprised Lio won again, but at the same time, his first loss should be something truly meaningful, like a match with the current champion. I’m sure after Summerslam, Lio will truly start his road to the title. Then it was an interesting but also smart choice in the Ali story to say he was just exhausted and beat up. It can give him something to say to Maverick about being kept out of the ring, with Ali insisting he’s okay while Maverick says he’s not. In a sense, it’s more a parallel to saying Ali has a concussion, without being controversial in having a concussion angle.

Hideo Itami meanwhile gets himself some great Heel Heat with that stoppage win. I’m thinking he’ll do this for a couple more weeks until he gets his title match. Of course, being the Heel, Alexander would have to win for them to have another rematch. Alexander and Gulak each get great video packages to sum up their feud, and then Alexander VS Gallagher is a really great main event. It helps they’re in one of the Carolinas, it was almost a hometown match for Alexander with the fans strongly behind him. Alexander wins, but then Gulak stands tall as he and Kendrick predictably beat Alexander down. I still feel like Alexander wins out, but it’d be a great surprise if Gulak wins. Then Gulak and Alexander can have a rematch while other options like TJP and Noam Dar build up towards title contention.

My Score: 8/10


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Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Live Report! (8/14/18)

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The SmackDown before Summerslam will have the FABULOUS Carmella and her challengers, Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch, face to face in the ring!

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville VS Charlotte Flair & Becky Lynch; Charlotte & Becky win.
  • 3v2 Handicap: The Triple Threat VS The Bludgeon Brothers; no contest.
  • Six Man Tag: SAnitY VS The New Day; The New Day wins.
  • Aiden English VS Andrade “Cien” Almas w/ Zelina Vega; Almas wins.
  • Jeff Hardy VS Shelton Benjamin; Hardy wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

Charlotte Flair heads to the ring!

The Queen of Carolina is just one of two challenges going after the SmackDown Women’s Championship, and she’s being joined by the other! It’s Becky Lynch! Not only the challengers, but here comes the FABULOUS Princess and the champion herself, Carmella! The entire SmackDown Women’s title match is in the ring, and all three women have a microphone. Greenville is happy to see them, but Carmella brings up what’s more absurd than facing two women at once at Summerslam is this forced face-to-face-to-face. Carmella is tired of seeing their faces. She’s also tired for being punished over being an amazing champion. But she is champion, so life’s good for Carmella!

To get serious, “Poor Becky Lynch~!” Becky doesn’t stand a chance of winning now! Becky used to be a clown, so maybe she should go back to that. It’s the one thing she does better than Charlotte. Becky gets Carmella wants Becky to say she doesn’t want Charlotte. Charlotte is so great, any match she’s in becomes that much harder. Plus, Becky dreamed of creaming Carmella all by herself. Charlotte came into the picture, so the dream now is beating Carmella and Charlotte. Carmella laughs. That’s a tall task. Carmella beat Charlotte twice, but she’s Fabulous. Charlotte is THE Women’s Champion in WWE and won so many other accomplishments, such as ending Asuka’s streak. But Becky was the inaugural SmackDown Women’s Champion, while Charlotte was on Raw.

Charlotte’s had enough of Carmella. Greenville “WOOS” for Charlotte as she says Carmerlla’s lies, cheating and stealing won’t work anymore. She can’t hang with the others so she uses every trick she can to retain. Carmella had to dig up James Ellsworth to beat Asuka. And she doesn’t understand why the WWE Universe doesn’t respect her? Maybe it’s because Carmella is a Diva living in a Woman’s Era. Becky agrees with a sip of tea. Carmella admits it, she’s a Diva, and proud of it. Because this Diva has what those two never will: beauty, body, charisma, and most importantly, the title. But she’s also alone… Paige comes out before Tea Generation X can start a fight.

“Ladies, my job as General Manager is to create the best competition as possible.” That’s why Charlotte got in for Summerslam. And she wouldn’t have if she didn’t beat Carmella. The WWE Universe owes Carmella for losing. “Thank You, Mella!” Not only that, but Paige knows all three women will steal the show, she does. And as their GM, it’s her duty to create the best competition for SmackDown. So why wait? Carmella, what you do best is talk, so go ahead and join commentary. Charlotte and Becky will do what they do best in a tag team match! Their opponents? Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville!

 

Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville VS Charlotte Flair & Becky Lynch!

It’s the duo formerly known as Absolution going against two thirds of the classic PCB! Paige’s new friends kept complaining she favored her old friends, so now it’s time to see if God’s Greatest Creation and the Gladiator Gal can make the most out of an opportunity.

SmackDown returns as Carmella smugly smirks and the bell rings. Sonya starts with Charlotte, and the Queen dodges the lunge. She does it again, but Sonya gets her on the third. Charlotte reverses and snapmares, but Sonya gets a takedown. Charlotte headscissors, but Sonya jackknifes. TWO, and they spin around. Charlotte goes for a backslide but Sonya pops out and around to a waistlock. Charlotte reverses then goes for the figure four but Sonya gets out. Sonya swings kicks but Charlotte dodges them. Fans “WOO~” as Charlotte styles and profiles. Charlotte chops away on Sonya, then tags in Becky. Becky and Charlotte crisscross and monkey flip SOnya, then Becky adds a leg drop. She twerks, then adds another leg drop. Cover, TWO!

Sonya hits back, then tags Mandy. Absolution mug Becky, and Mandy whips Becky to a corner. Becky goes up and over and gets a waistlock. Many pulls hair and then a leg, but Becky pushes her. Mandy cartwheels to dodge, then she drops Becky. Cover, but Becky slides out to dropkick Mandy back. Tag to Charlotte, double whip to double hip toss. Charlotte covers, ONE, but Charlotte keeps on Mandy with a headlock. Mandy powers out, but Charlotte rolls. She scoops but Mandy slips out to pull hair. Mandy tags Sonya, and Mandy snapmares for Sonya. Sonya runs but Charlotte dodges the sliding kick to come back with an exploder! Sonya rolls out, tag to Becky for a flying forearm! Becky puts Sonya in the ring, covers, TWO.

Tag back to Charlotte, and the hand-off. Charlotte whips but Sonya reverses. Charlotte gets on the apron, fights off Mandy then slingshots to schoolgirl. TWO, and Sonya kicks Charlotte’s leg. Sonya tags in Mandy, and Absolution stomps into Charlotte. Tag back to Sonya and she goes after Charlotte with a waistlock. Standing switch but Mandy tags in. Charlotte rolls Sonya but gets Mandy’s knee! Absolution has control while we go picture in picture. The referee checks on Charlotte but her face is okay. Mandy brings Charlotte over and stomps a mudhole int the corner. Tag to Sonya, and Absolution double suplexes. Sonya keeps on Charlotte in the corner with shoulders. Tag back to Mandy, and Sonya holds Charlotte. Charlotte fights out and boots Mandy down. Charlotte brings Mandy over, tag to Becky.

Becky rolls Mandy, TWO, but she backslides. TWO, and the two stand up. Mandy swings but misses, Becky gets bucked off. She side-steps and dropkicks Mandy down. Cover, TWO! Sonya distracts, but that gets Charlotte to come in. The referee has to put Charlotte in the corner, but that allows Sonya to kick Becky down! Mandy covers, TWO! Absolution is shocked, but Mandy keeps on Becky at the ropes. Sonya gets a cheap shot in, then Mandy mocks the styling and profiling. Mandy puts Becky in a chinlock and thrashes around. Becky gets up as fans rally, and she fights back with body shots. Mandy clubs her down, then tags in Sonya. Sonya mugs Becky, then throws big knees. She snapmares Becky, and hits the sliding knee! Cover, TWO! Sonya gets frustrated, but she keeps on Becky with another snapmare, into body scissors.

Becky endures the squeeze while Charlotte rallies the fans. Becky fights her way up to a cover as we go single picture, TWO! Sonya powers Becky to a corner and rams in her shoulder. She throws Becky around, then tags Mandy. Mandy chokes Becky at the ropes again. She whips Becky to a corner, but then Becky dodges to jump kick! Becky wants the exploder bu Mandy pulls hair. Mandy scoops and slams Becky, then tags in Sonya. Sonya brings Becky back into the body scissors, but fans rally up again. Becky pops out and reaches for Charlotte, but is powered back. Enziguri! Both women are down, but crawling for their corners. Hot tag to Mandy, and she swings on Charlotte. She misses, but Becky pushes her away to then clothesline her down! Becky fires up, rallies with strikes, then hits the Becksploder!

Mandy gets to a corner, but gets a Straight Firearm! Becky has to kick Sonya out, then kick her down. She goes back to Mandy, but small package! TWO, DISARM-HER! Mandy taps, Becky & Charlotte win!

Winners: Becky Lynch & Charlotte, Becky by submission

Carmella insists that things will be different when it’s every woman for herself. But if Becky burns it up like she did here, and Charlotte is great as always, will she still lose to at least one of them this Sunday?

 

Miz & Maryse share exciting news.

The Most Must-See Superstar Couple have enjoyed their show, it’s awesome! It’s so must-see that they announce something big and exciting! The USA Network has already picked up a second season! The fastest pick-up in the history of television! They thank all their fans for supporting them, but just get ready for more, because it’ll be AWESOME!

 

Charlotte & Becky celebrate.

Charlotte is surprised Becky did all that by herself at the end. Well last chance to get ready for Summerslam. That’s true. Charlotte wishes Becky luck, but she knows they don’t need luck. They’re both that good. May the best woman win. She will.

 

3v2 Handicap: The Triple Threat VS The Bludgeon Brothers!

South Carolina’s own trio are just the newest sacrifices to Harper & Rowan! And forget the bell, Harper & Rowan just run over three of the two! Then they give the third guy the double crucifix bomb! Rowan runs one of the others over, then feeds him to Harper’s boot. Harper is whipped at the other for a back elbow, then he feeds that guy to Rowan’s body check. They smash the two together, then scoop slam them on top of each other. Harper is again the human weapon senton! This destruction isn’t over, they throw the first guy onto the third guy at the apron! Then they drag the third guy up, for the Doomsday Bomb!! This wasn’t a match, this was a bludgeoning. Who of the New Day will be chosen to step up to Harper & Rowan? Who of the New Day will survive?

No Contest

 

The 1000th Episode is coming!

Washington, DC, get ready for October 16th!

 

The Miz VS Daniel Bryan, Eight Years in the Making, Part 1!

It all started with the original inception of WWE’s NXT. Miz was adamant that he was the Pro, Bryan was the rookie. Miz would humiliate Bryan time and again, but it would come to blows soon enough. “I feel like we’ve been doing this forever.” It’s already been eight years. Bryan explains how different NXT was back then compared to now. Eight men would compete in various challenges, as well as the ring, to see who was the most deserving of a contract. Bryan was already a veteran of the indies and other promotions, and was given The Miz as a “mentor.” Miz was a five year veteran, and both United States and undisputed Tag Team Champion. Miz knew ratings, but Bryan knew wrestling. That was the real reason for the clash.

Miz thought and still thinks he knows better, no matter what. He wants respect, but he doesn’t give it. But Miz couldn’t see that as he grilled Bryan time and again. Bryan just needed to “shut up and listen”, but all Miz did was try to make Bryan another Miz. In the end, Bryan would be eliminated with an 0-10 wrestling record. Miz rubs it in that “the great” Daniel Bryan never won during that time. But Bryan points out that he got to have his first match back against Miz, and won. Bryan realized he didn’t need the Miz, but Miz needed him. This is just part one, what more will be shown and said in the next two parts?

 

Six Man Tag: SAnitY VS The New Day!

Awwww~ Greenville~! Chaos won a Tables Match at Extreme Rules, but Positivity won in the Tag Title Contenders Tournament. Just days before facing the Bludgeon Brothers in Brooklyn, can Xavier, Big E and birthday boy Kofi survive the anarchy?

The bell rings as Big E starts against Eric Young. They circle as fans chant, “Happy Birthday!” for Kofi. Eric gets a waistlock but Big E throws him off. E swivels those hips, but Eric kick slow and drives his elbow into Big E’s neck. Eric runs, but into a belly2belly! Cover, TWO! Tag to Kofi, and he gets a boost from Big E for a back senton! Cover, TWO! Kofi brings Eric up and whips, but Eric holds ropes. Eric elbows back, then Wolfe tags. Kofi goes after Eric, whips, but Eric reverses and Wolfe holds the rope down! Kofi hits the table, then Wolfe drops him onto the apron. Wolfe puts Kofi in, covers, TWO. He keeps on Kofi as Killian Dain tags in. We go picture in picture as Big Damo stomps Kofi. Damo wrenches Kofi’s neck, Kofi stands, but Damo throws him back down.

Damo drags Kofi around, then brings him up to the top rope. He climbs up but Kofi resists the superplex. Kofi knocks Damo back as we go single picture. Kofi leaps over, but Damo’s dropkick blasts him away from the New Day! Damo looms over Kofi, and soaks in the heat. He drags Kofi over and gives clubbing crossface forearms. He stalks Kofi to the corner but fans rally up. Damo brings Kofi up but Kofi fights back, only to get Fisherman suplex’d all the same. Damo tags Wolfe, and Wolfe climbs up, for flying clothesline! Cover, TWO! SAnitY still has control while we go to break.

SmackDown returns as Kofi is isolated in SAnitY’s corner. Damo waits for him to stand, then swings. Kofi slips out and DDT’s Damo down! Fans fire up, as does Woods on the New Day’s corner. Kofi and Damo crawl, hot tags to Wolfe and Woods! Woods rallies with a SUPERKICK to Eric, then a boot to Wolfe. Wolfe reverses the whip but Woods comes back with forearms! Woods keeps going, mule kick to a toss tot eh ropes. he builds sped for a big dropkick tot he back. Woods runs corner to corner but is put on the apron. He still kicks Wolf back, then hits the step-in tornado DDT! Cover, but Eric breaks it with the elbow drop! Damo runs at Big E and Kofi, then Wolfe tags to Eric. Eric brings woods up, for a Death Valley onto Wolfe’s knees! Cover, TWO!

Eric tags to Damo, and he holds Woods for Damo to stomp. Damo drags Woods up, back suplexes but Wood slips out. Woods chops away on Damo, but is whipped back to SAnitY’s corner. Woods blasts Wolfe & Eric, but runs into the Divide! Cover, but Big E Breaks it! He throws Eric, but gets a boot from Wolfe. Kofi hits Trouble in Paradise, but Damo throws him out. Kofi gets on the top rope, and FLIES onto Eric & Wolfe! Damo runs into a boot, Big E tags in! Scoop and MIDNIGHT HOUR!! Cover, New Day wins!!

Winners: The New Day, Big E pinning

Positivity prevails! All three are ready for Summerslam, but will only two of them be ready for Harper & Rowan?

 

The Miz VS Daniel Bryan, Eight Years in the Making, Part 2!

After NXT, both men would find title success time and again, if at different times in their careers. “I start a new life, a life where I am no longer a wrestler.” Bryan had accomplished so much, but it had taken a toll on his body. With a heavy heart and utmost sadness, Bryan had to retire. Bryan had done so much, but giving that speech was the toughest thing to do. Miz says that’s what happens when you fight pros like you’re a rookie. If he took less risks, he’d be better off. Bryan knew he could tone it down, but he didn’t want to be soft like Miz. But then a new opportunity came along, and Bryan became SmackDown’s new GM! He did a great job, but not in Miz’s eyes.

Miz was barely on TV, and he ripped into Bryan on the August 23rd, 2016 edition of Talking Smack. Miz called Bryan the real coward. He hasn’t been injured once in his career, and honestly expected Bryan to hit him, but Bryan walked out. Bryan said he had no choice, or else he would’ve hit Miz. Miz hit a nerve, but Bryan made a vow to stick around. Bryan took a high road, but Miz claims that was Bryan hiding. Bryan being fired for manning up? As if.

But Bryan could tell Miz made a calculated move. Then Miz would parody everything Bryan did in the ring. Bryan swallowed his pride, but it kept him up at night. That made Bryan more motivated than ever to get back. Miz claims Bryan is haunted by the truth. Miz knows Bryan better than Bryan does. “The truth is, and it always will be,” is that Miz is Bryan’s Pro, and his superior.

 

Paige checks on Samoa Joe.

The Destroyer isn’t in the mood to talk to his GM, but he still opens the door. She knows he knows AJ Styles is coming out to the ring again tonight. He could’ve responded but didn’t. He’s shy. Well Paige doesn’t want Joe to suddenly be an extrovert. She needs him to be professional. But when she told him he was the #1 contender, she liked his killer instinct and unpredictability. He can’t be that if he tells everyone what he’s doing. Joe makes a promise to continue to do what he wants and when he wants. Everyone just has to wait and deal with the consequences. Or maybe Joe can just sit, relax and enjoy all Paige’s hard work. He goes back into his locker room, but will he really stay there?

 

Aiden English introduces… himself.

MC Artiste has had a rough time making things up to Rusev & Lana. He always means well, but somehow, someway, it makes things worse. English has a hard time starting, but sings “all bad things come to an end,” so tonight he makes amends for when he let down his friends and causing a break. English will make Andrade pay, because tonight he fights for… RUSEV DAAAAY~!

Aiden English VS Andrade “Cien” Almas w/ Zelina Vega!

The Drama King vows to win, but will he be able to do so against El Idolo?

We go picture in picture as Almas hits the ring. La Muneca takes care of his golden robe while the bell rings. They tie up quick but English runs Almas over. Cover, ONE, so he tries again, ONE. English rolls Almas, ONE. Almas bails out to slow things down. Vega coaches Almas up to be focused, but Engilsh comes around and chases Almas into the ring. Almas slingshots out, but into a boot! English bumps Almas off the apron, then into the ring. Vega distracts Engilsh and Almas pounces at the ropes. Almas drags English out for the draping backbreaker to elbow. Cover, ONE, but Almas keeps on English with an armlock. English endures while Vega coaches Almas to keep going. English gets up but Almas brings him back down. Fans rally and English feeds off it as we go single picture.

English fights back with forearms but Almas knees low. Almas tries a suplex but English small packages. TWO, and English runs into a hip toss that sends him into buckles! Vega calls for it, Almas runs, but English intercepts with a clothesline! English hurries up top, flies, for a big splash! TWO! English grows frustrated, but he goes after Almas on the apron. ALmas hotshots him back, then hits the boot feint and elbow! Vega shouts for it, Almas gives English CIEN KNEES! But he’s not done there, Hammerlock DDT! Cover, Almas wins!

Winner: Andrade Almas, by pinfall

El Idolo celebrates with La Muneca as they keep English down in the dumps. Vega speaks. “You guys like catchy phrases and useless holidays?” Then mark your calendars, because 8/19/18 will mark the END of Rusev and Lana Day! Vega will expose Lana for the dead weight she is that drags down her husband. But then Mr. & Mrs. Machka appear! Rusev & Lana respond by saying “Look at you two, acting like you just won the Power Ball.” Almas’ luck runs out, and Zelina will learn why Lana is the Best, Lana Number One! Lana vows that together, she and Rusev will CRUSH Almas & Vega, because Summerslam is on what day? Rusev Daaaay~!

 

AJ Styles talks with Paige.

She gives him a fair warning. Things are intense between AJ and Joe, but they need to keep the main event intact. Paige tried to keep Joe from doing something, but she hopes Styles will hold back. Styles made a promise to his wife that he intends on keeping. Does that mean he will or he won’t!?

 

The Miz VS Daniel Bryan, Eight Years in the Making, Part 3!

In the conclusion to this three-part series, we look at Bryan’s new start in the ring. After two years, “I never thought the day would come”, but Bryan saw specialist after specialist, and they all said the same thing: “You are cleared.” Bryan was back in the ring! The greatest day of his career would then lead to the greatest return, at Wrestlemania! But The Miz didn’t care. Miz had his own run as the Heart & Soul of Raw. Bryan stepped down as GM, but not until after putting Miz back on SmackDown! He could’ve let things end without ever settling it, but what’s the fun in that?

Miz felt done with Bryan, and sees this as Bryan holding a grudge. It’s too late for Bryan to prove himself to anyone, so Miz won’t be his stepping stone back to the top. Miz vows that the end of this nightmare will be Bryan admitting Miz is better. Bryan admits, Miz has family, friends and fame, but “do you honestly think that’s why I came back?” Bryan isn’t back out of jealousy, isn’t back out of making a name for himself, it’s because this is his passion and his life! After all the talk and stunts and “crap between you and me”, there’s only one thing left to do. They’re going to get in the ring one more time against each other, “to finally shut you up!” This story comes full circle at Summerslam, but who will have the storybook ending?

 

Jeff Hardy VS Shelton Benjamin!

Two of Carolina’s own battle it out days before Brooklyn as the Charismatic Engima looks to snap back from The Viper’s bite. Can Hardy best the Gold Standard to then go after the King of Strong Style and the United States Championship?

SmackDown returns as Benjamin puts Hardy back in the ring, after having SUPERKICK’D Hardy down. Benjamin wraps Hardy in a chinlock, but fans rally up. Hardy fights back but Benjamin knees low. Benjamin rolls Hardy to a  cover, TWO. Benjamin stalks Hardy to put on another chinlock. Fans rally for “Brother Nero!” as he endures another squeeze. Hardy stands up while we go picture in picture. They go around and Hardy fights back. Benjamin wrangles him back down to the mat, squeezing even tighter. Hardy works his way around but Benjamin just adjusts to a deeper chinlock. Hardy gets up and fights out as fans rally again. Jawbreaker! Benjamin staggers while Hardy gets to a corner. Hardy dodges Benjamin’s splash, then hits Whisper in the Wind! We go single picture as Hardy covers, TWO!

Hardy counters Benjmain’s punches then whips. Benjamin reverses but Hardy holds ropes to run him over. Hardy hits the atomic drop then leg-splitting leg drop. He dropkicks and covers, TWO! Hardy gets up and calls to DELETE! Benjamin denies the twist but misses his Dragon Whip. Hardy gets his spinning back kick, then the Hardyac Arrest is caught. Hardy slips out and hits a neckbreaker! He takes off the shirt and climbs up top. Hardy takes aim, but Benjamin stops him with a step-up knee! Benjamin climbs up, and SUPERPLEXES! Cover, TWO! Benjamin keeps his cool as he stands back up. He stalks Hardy, but Hardy sees him coming, Slingblade! Hardy kicks, hits the Twist of Fate! Then a splash cover, Hardy wins!

Winner: Jeff Hardy, by pinfall

The Enigma is back, but here comes Shinsuke Nakamura. The Rockstar shows off that title belt, and Hardy expects Orton out of nowhere. Benjamin stands up and Hardy blasts him, but Nakamura gives Hardy a backstabber! Nakamura takes aim from the corner, fires himself up and… Hardy reverses into Twist of Fate! Hardy hurries up top, takes aim himself and… SWANTON BOMB! Nakamura failed to get one over on Hardy, but will Hardy be able to do that at Summerslam? At the same time, The Viper is lying in wait from around the end of the stage. Even if Hardy wins, will Orton simply strike him down all over again?

 

AJ Styles heads to the ring!

The Pheonomenal One promised to give further rebuttal to Samoa Joe’s personal insults, but he also told Paige he promised Mrs. Styles something. What is it the WWE Champion promises to promise?

Greenville gives Styles a standing ovation before he speaks. He says he is blessed because “for almost 20 years”, he’s competed around the world against the best. Styles has learned a lot, but nothing more important than what he leanred after winning the WWE Championship. “There’s a reason why this championship is so hard to hold. It’s because of the pressure” the champ is put under. Samoa Joe hit Styles’ pressure points, he’s a mastermind. It started with that blindside attack during the contract signing three weeks ago. Joe would strike and choke Styles out to then put his name on the contract and establish he was the #1 contender.

Right when Styles thinks he knows Joe, Joe stabs him in the back, and in the heart. By that, Styles means Joe saying Styles puts the title above all else, “even if it means you’re a failure as a father.” Joe said that while the WWE Universe will cheer Styles on, the Styles family will be cheering Joe on. After Joe puts Styles down, Styles’ family will have their daddy back while Joe will be WWE Champion. Styles says Joe got him right where he wants him. If Joe wants Styles to get mad, he’s mad. Styles got personal about his family, and felt that “as a man, as a father, as a husband”, he had to defend himself. Styles went to a dark place where he wanted to rip Joe’s head off.

But then Styles returned home and his wife told him not to lose his cool. The family supports and appreciates all the work he does, but he has to keep his focus. But now Samoa Joe appears! Joe is on the ramp, as unpredictable as he told Paige he would be. Joe heads down the ramp, but pulls out a paper from his pocket. Styles gave us a wonderful tale, but they both know Styles is lying. Joe wants Styles to keep that promise to keep his cool. Joe has a letter from a fan, and wants Styles to hear it. “Dear Joe, two weeks ago, I heard the things that you said about AJ Styles and his family. Your remarks are disgusting and made me physically ill. Not because they were wrong, but because they were true.”

This fan used to love AJ Styles, but now it’s clear Styles never wanted children. Or a wife, either. Which is why AJ Styles is such a great champion: he’ll do anything to stay away from his family. At Summerslam, this fan prays Joe wins so that Styles can know how it feels to lose what he loves most, because this fan lost Styles long ago. “My sincerest gratitude, Wendy Styles.” Joe gets under Styles’ skin all over again, but will it come back to haunt him in Brooklyn?

 


 

My Thoughts:

A fairly interesting SmackDown, but still pretty good for a go-home. The opening segment was great for the meta that Carmella brought up. She is the last remaining “Diva” but she doesn’t care about the stigma so long as she’s champion. Naturally the opening segment leads to a match, but Charlotte & Becky VS Mandy & Sonya was pretty good. It was a good touch for Becky to finish things up on her own, she wants to show she can defeat two superstars at once. The tension between her and Charlotte is building, but as I’ve said, Tea Generation X needs to make it to WWE Evolution and that Women’s Tag Team Championship. But it’s good that SmackDown is doing it at all, so that it’ll be perfect when Becky snaps at Survivor Series.

It was actually a good move for the Bludgeon Brothers to destroy those jobbers outside of a match. Harper & Rowan are at the point where squashing doesn’t even do enough, so just brutalizing mortal men is what’s needed. The New Day & SAnitY do great in their Six-Man, fans ate it up, especially celebrating Kofi’s birthday as part of the match. I still feel the right move is for New Day to find a way to overcome and win, and then we can freshen things up for the Fall. Then that trio of video packages was so great, Bryan & Miz are gonna tear it up. I still can’t say who wins, but either way, with all this Miz & Mrs. success, I would love to see Miz try one more Face run because he’s that good on the mic and is perfectly comfortable in his style to make it in the ring.

I really liked how English looked good during his match with Almas, though obviously he was going to lose. English probably did endear himself to Rusev & Lana, so I’m hoping that win or lose, Rusev forgives English and Team Rusev Day is stronger than ever. The last two things in the episode were good but also odd to end on. Hardy VS Benjamin was solid for how quick it was, and it was great for Hardy to stand tall after Nakamura tries to attack. But with that and Orton lurking slightly off to the side, Hardy won’t be winning the title at Summerslam. Then ending with Styles responding to Joe’s accusations, only for Joe to counter them savagely, was a great moment for them, but again, odd to end on. Usually things like this end in a fight, but I give credit to SmackDown for ending with a speechless Styles.

My Score: 7.9/10


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