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Mitchell’s Ring of Honor Report! (7/28/18)



ROH cover image


The ROH World Six Man Tag Championships are on the line as The Kingdom defends against mishmash underdogs Kenny King, Chuckie T, and rookie Eli Isom!



  • Jonathan Gresham VS Kushida; Kushida wins.
  • Oedo Tai VS Mayu Iwatani & Jenny Rose; Oedo Tai wins.
  • ROH World Six Man Tag Team Championships: The Kingdom VS Kenny King, Chuck Taylor & Eli Isom; The Kingdom wins and retain the ROH World Six Man Tag Team Championships.


There is a NEW ROH World Champion!

The Franchise, Jay Lethal, fought his way through his loss column to get back at the likes of Punishment Martinez and Kushida. Then he staked his claim on episode 357, and it resulted in a Fatal 4 Way between him, the champion, Dalton Castle, Matt Taven and Cody. And after fight his heart out against those three top tier talents, Lethal would win back the title! Will this fairy tale ending only mark the beginning of a new chapter for both Lethal and ROH?


Jonathan Gresham VS Kushida!

The Octopus has evolved into a Master of the Craft, but he goes up against one of the best Super Juniors in the world in NJPW’s Time Splitter. Can Gresham grapple better than the former IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion? Or will he go Back to the Future with a loss?

The Code of Honor is upheld and the bell rings. Kushida and Gresham circle and feel things out. Kushida lunges but Gresham reverses to a facelock. They stand up and Kushida reverses back to a wristlock. Gresham reverses to a wristlock of his own, then arm-drags Kushida. Kushida holds on as they stand up again. Gresham reverses back and around to a facelock, to then spin to a takedown. Kushida gets a headscissors but Gresham slips out, and fans applaud this technical exhibition. Gresham and Kushida circle again, and Kushida leaps at Gresham. Gresham denies the hoverboard and goes after the legs. Kushida pushes Gresham, then wraps up an arm for a crossface.

Fans rally as Gresham stands up and cartwheels out. Gresham takes Kushida down, rolls to an armlock, but Kushida gets the ropebreak. Fans applaud as Gresham lets Kushida go. Kushida gets out to collect himself, then returns to circle with Gresham. Gresham gets a wristlock and spins to the takedown. Gresham sits on the hammerlock to then pull on the other arm. He stands up and traps that arm between his legs, and teases the fall. He finally gives it, and tweaks both Kushida’s arms. Kushida can only endure as Gresham grabs a leg. Gresham pulls back and it’s a complex crab cover. TWO and Kushida rolls to ropes. Gresham waits for Kushida to stand, being a good sport about the ropes.

The two circle and tie up again, and Gresham gets another wristlock. Kushida reverses to a takedown and holds on to the facelock even as Gresham rolls. Kushida floats over and all around Gresham like he’s on a pommel horse. He stops and pats Gresham’s back. Kushida dares Gresham to bring it, but Gresham keeps his cool. Fans duel as the two tie up again. Gresham gets a wristlock and stands on the arm. He goes after the fingers, then the shoulder. Gresham pushes Kushida back, then monkey flips him off the ropes. Kushida prevents the cover and they stand back up. Kushida monkey flips, double bridge to prevent covers! Fans love this as they get back up.

Kushida pushes Gresham back, then gets another monkey flip. He sits on Gresham, ONE as Gresham sunsets. TWO as Kushida sits back on Gresham, but TWO as Gresham brings it back. Kushida rolls through to jackknife but Gresham rolls through to sit on it. TWO as Kushida sunsets, ONE and Gresham jackknifes to sunset. ONE and we go back again and again and again! Fans fire up over this fast and furious cover attempts, TWO as Kushida almost has Gresham. Gresham doesn’t stop, he uppercuts Kushida’s arm, only to get the Pele! Fans are loving how close this match is while we go to break.

ROH returns and Gresham tweaks Kushida’s arm. Gresham waistlocks but Kushida standing switches. Gresham switches but Kushid elbows out. Kushida runs but Gresham goes sideways. Gresham slides under Kushida, Kushida runs but Gresham follows for the quebrada! And stomp! Gresham grabs the arm for the Mahistrol, TWO! He goes for another, TWO, so he tries again! TWO, but Gresham gets an armbar. Kushida stands up to make it a cover, TWO. Kushida manages a hip toss and cartwheel, to kick Gresham’s arm! They’re even now as Gresham gets to a corner. Fans fire up as Kushida rolls and DDT’s! Kushida holds on, but he can’t go Back to the Future, so he hops up for the Hoverboard! He brings Gresham to the mat, but Gresham resists.

Gresham works his way against the hold, but Kushida uses his full weight. Gresham manages to pop Kushida off and shove him at ropes. Kushida comes back with shoulder, but both men slow down from the pain in their arms. Fans rally up as Kushida goes after Gresham’s arm. Gresham whips Kushida off, but Kushida fakes out the arm-drag, only to get in another arm-drag. Kushida arm-drags back, but Gresham headscissors. Kushida pops out and SLAPS Gresham! Gresham frowns and slaps Kushida back. “This ain’t New Japan, Kushida, this is Ring of Honor.” Gresham is uncharacteristically angry, but that makes Kushida just as uncharacteristically angry. Kushida shoves Gresham, then dares him to hit him. Gresham fires a forearm, so Kushida gives it back.

Gresham goes again, so Kushida gives him another one. They go back and forth and pick up speed. Kushida winces from his bad arm, but he still comes back with more! Roaring elbow, but Gresham kips up to enziguri, then German Suplex! Bridging cover, TWO!! Gresham can’t believe how close he was, but fans are rallying behind him. Gresham grabs Kushida’s leg while fans declare “This is Awesome!” He kicks Kushida while he’s down but Kushida shoves him away. Kushida kicks but misses, so he hops over and slides under to flip Gresham for the Hoverboard! He has his weight on Gresham, but Gresham shifts to relieve pressure. Gresham reaches for ropes but Kushida rolls him away, BACK TO THE FUTURE! Cover, Kushida wins!

Winner: Kushida, by pinfall

The Time Splitter springs back from his loss to Lethal, while the Octopus continues to flounder. The Code of Honor is still upheld, showing that while frustrated, Gresham is still a good sport. Gresham is still in the International Cup coming up August 16th, can he get some career defining wins in such a star-studded field? Will Kushida climb his way up ROH’s ladder to challenge for a title?


Marty Scurll speaks.

He directs his message to Shane Helms. Is Shane trying to piss Scurll off? Because he’s come to ROH to make a name for himself off the Villain’s. Scurll tells Helms now not to anger him. When they face off next week in episode 359, a broken finger will be the least of Helms’ worries. The difference between them is that Shane is “playing the part of the superhero” whereas Scurll doesn’t cosplay, he IS a Villain.


The Briscoes are still ROH World Tag Team Champions after Best in the World.

But winning wasn’t enough. Jay Briscoe stood over Matt Jackson, which angered Nick Jackson. Nick pushed Jay away, which only angered Jay & Mark. #DemBoyz beat Nick and Matt down further, until The SCU came in. The SCU wanted their turn! Kaz and Scorpio sky held the Bucks up, but then Daniels SMACKED Jay! Kaz threw Mark out and for once, SCU were the heroes! But why?

SoCal Uncensored speaks.

Ever since Best in the World, everyone’s been asking “Why SCU, why?” It’s a simple story of respect, or lack there of. Best in the World 2017 is where Cody defeated Christopher Daniels to become ROH World Champion, but that only hurt a fraction of how bad it felt hearing the fans cheer. That disrespect hurt. The Addiction took that hurt out on the fans. They disrespected the ROH fans, the ROH talent, and the ROH commissioner, Joe Koff. What happened was Koff saying SCU’s days were numbered. Daniels woke up, and saw that he had less than six months left in ROH, and he was not about to forced out over hurt feelings.

Daniels asked himself, “In the twilight of my career, do I need to find a new home?” His best friend, Kaz, is in the best shape of his life with a decade left in him, was Daniels going to force him to start over? Scorpio Sky has been at it 15 years and finally caught a break, was Daniels going to cost him that? The answer is obviously “No”. Daniels says he could humbly apologize and beg, but instead of asking for a spot, they’re going to earn a spot. These next few months, Daniels will make it his mission to make the idea of SCU out of ROH a “preposterous proposition.” He will leave this company better than when he found it. That makes The Briscoes their next target.

Kaz poses a question. If you knew the exact day that you were going to die, how would you react? Would you right your wrongs? Hold your loved ones tights? Do everything you could to leave a good mark? Or would you go out in a blaze of glory? The Addiction had a long time to think it over, because they’ve had the deadline made clear, Final Battle 2018. Fate stepped in, in the form of The Briscoes winning back the ROH World Tag Team titles to become 9-time champions, “the baddest team on the planet.” They’re badasses from Sandy Fork, they’re vicious hunters, but have never been hunted. They’ve had a team like The Addiction coming after them with their 45 years of combined experience. That’s exactly what’s happening. The Addiction’s careers depend on beating those titles.

Scorpio Sky speaks now, saying he’s worked his entire life to be here in this company at this moment, where he belongs. He came in with The Addiction, and he’ll go out with them, too. SCU is united against Sandy Fork, will they be able to win the war before time runs out?


We have a NEW ROH World Television Champion.

And it’s none other than the Purple Mist, Punishment Martinez! He smashed Hangman Page up and down the arena in their Street Fight at Best in the World. Martinez is quite possibly the most dangerous ROH WTVC of all time. Who stands a snowball’s chance in Hell of taking the title from him?


Oedo Tai VS Mayu Iwatani & Jenny Rose!

Stardom’s most sinister stable returns to ROH for Women of Honor tag team action. Kagetsu is the current World of Stardom Champion, while both she and Hana Kimura were once the Goddess of Stardom tag team champions. They take on the highly decorated Icon of Stardom and the American Joshi for crossover action, who will win to climb both WOH and Stardom ladders?

The Exotic Goddess, Mandy Leon, joins commentary as she’s had experience in both promotions. She also wishes to climb the ranks in both, what will she learn from watching talent from both sides up close and personal?

No Code of Honor here as the bell rings and Jenny starts against Kagetsu. They rush each other and collide with shoulders, but neither one backs down. Kagetsu runs, but they have another solid collision. She tries again, but this time Jenny runs her over. Jenny tags Mayu, and they work together with a double whip. Jenny runs Kagetsu over with a leaping lariat, then Mayu adds a somersault senton. Cover, TWO, but Mayu keeps Kagetsu down. Tag to Jenny, and Jenny stomps Kagetsu more. She drags Kagetsu up for forearms, then whips. Kagetsu reverses, then distracts the ref while Hana trips Jenny up. Hana drags Jenny out and clubs away, but Mayu comes in to whip Kagetsu. Kagetsu uses that momentum to DIVE onto Jenny! Oedo Tai is sly and in control while we go to break.

ROH returns and Hana whips Jenny to a corner. She whips Kagetsu in for the forearm smash, then adds knees of her own. Oedo Tai works together while fans duel. They double whip but Jenny breaks the clothesline to then give clotheslines of her own! Jenny crawls for her corner, hot tag to Mayu! Mayu dropkicks Hana, then dropkicks Kagetsu. She whips Hana corner to corner but Hana reverses. Mayu slides out the side to then roll Hana back. Hana deflects the dropkick, then Kagetsu comes in to help. They go after Mayu with a double whip, but Mayu criss-crosses her own arms to acrobatically arm-drag Oedo Tai together!

Fans fire up with the Icon of Stardom while Oedo Tai regroups. Mayu runs in, 2-for-1 hesitation dropkick! Kagetsu rolls out, so Hana gets a bonus dropkick. Cover, TWO, but Mayu keeps focus. She drags Hana into position, then climbs up. Mayau aims, but her frog splash flops! Hana grabs Mayu while Kagetsu intercepts Jenny. Jenny struggles to get away while Hana locks on her modified octopus stretch! Mayu endures, and Jenny gets free of Kagetsu to kick Hana down! Kagetsu kicks Jenny back, then throws her out. Hana goes after Mayu again, vowing to finish this. She suplexes but Mayu slips out to back kick and roundhouse! Hana staggers and Mayu runs, but into a suplex slam! Both women are down but the fans fire up. They crawl for their corners, hot tags to Kagetsu and Jenny!

Jenny swings but Kagetsu rakes the eyes! Kagetsu stops at 4, but she runs into a spinning sidewalk slam! Jenny keeps going, Perfect Plex! TWO!! Jenny keeps going as she stomps away on Kagetsu. She climbs up and hits Kagetsu with the flying clothesline. Cover, but Hana breaks it. Mayu takes Hana out while Jenny drags Kagetsu up. Jenny throws forearms, then runs, but into an armbar takedown! Mayu tries to save her but Hana anchors her down. Jenny reaches for ropes, and gets the break! Kagetsu lets go at 4, but she’s ready to finish this. Fireman’s carry denied with elbows. Kagetsu and Jenny brawl with heavy elbows, and it fires Kagetsu up. She fires off, lifts Jenny, but Jenny fights out again. Kagetsu kicks low, runs, dodges, but SUPERKICK frm Mayu and lariat from Jenny! Cover, but Mayu fails to stop Hana, and Hana breaks the pin!

Jenny can’t believe it, but she won’t give up. She gets the fans fired up as she brings Kagetsu up. Hana takes out Mayu and Kagetsu fights with elbows. Kagetsu distracts the ref again, so that Hana can SMACK Jenny with the Oedo Tai sign! Hana SMACKS Mayu, too, then Kagetsu Buzzsaws Jenny! Cover, TWO!? Oedo Tai doesn’t want to believe it, so they have HZK distract this time. Oedo Tai gets away with double boots to Jenny! Cover, Hana intercepts Mayu, but Mayu powers through to break it! Oedo Tai is furious as they throw Mayu out. Kagetsu lifts Jenny, Samoan Driver! Cover, Oedo Tai finally wins!

Winner: Oedo Tai, Kagetsu pinning

It took every trick they had up their sleeve, but the devious duo found a way to win. Will this allow Oedo Tai to challenge for the tag titles in Stardom? Will this position one or both of them behind whoever the next #1 contender will be?

ROH announces a WOH #1 Contenders Fatal 4 Way.

With Sumie Sakai still the WOH Champion, she needs challengers to add to her growing legacy. Will it be Tenille Dashwood, Karen Q, Madison Rayne or Kelly Klein that rises up to challenge the Ray of Sunshine?


Exclusive footage after Jay Lethal’s championship victory.

He did what he vowed to do, he got back the ROH World title. He was without it for almost two years, the longest time ever. It drove him mad, because this is the greatest title in the world. Lethal isn’t cocky or bragging, this is him proving his worth as the best wrestler in the world. This doesn’t mean he’s the greatest, this is the prize for being the greatest! The man makes the belt, and Lethal is at the top of his game, as well as on top of the wrestling world. There will be a line of men around the world wanting just one chance at the title. Lethal welcomes it all, “come and get it, boys!”


Austin Aries joins commentary for the main event.

The Greatest Man That Ever Lived and the Collector of Belts is far from over with his former friend and protege, Kenny King. But he insists he’s out here because he feels like it. Whatever his motivation, A-Double is ready to watch the championship main event.

ROH World Six Man Tag Team Championships: The Kingdom VS Kenny King, Chuck Taylor & Eli Isom!

Matt Taven, TK O’Ryan & Vinnie Marseglia cried conspiracy for an entire year while waiting for a rematch for the titles. They finally got the titles back after sticking their noses in title match after title match, but now they whine that it’s too soon to have challengers. On the other side, the K I N G, the Kentucky Gentleman and the Future of Honor won the first-ever Six Man Tag Gauntlet to earn this opportunity. They had to wait a week with last week’s impromptu World Championship match, can they make good on the extra seven days of preparation?

While the Kingdom makes their way out, we see their message to their opponents from just before the match. They all laugh at how it was Eli Isom who pinned Christopher Daniels. In other words, they think their opponents are a joke. Taven says all fairy tales come to an end, because this is his Kingdom. Will the champions overlooking their challengers come back to haunt them?

The Kingdom attacks before the bell! They kick Kenny and Chuckie out to isolate the rookie in the corner for mudhole stomps. The referee tries to get them to stop, but it’s Chuckie T and Kenny rushing the ring that backs them off. The Kingdom send them back out, then put Isom in their corner. Things finally begin as a proper match and Vinnie keeps on Isom with European Uppercuts. Tag to O’Ryan, and they lift Isom. Isom slips out and bumps their heads together. Tag to Chuckie! Chuckie whips but Vinnie reverses. Chuckie hurdles over the Horror King and hits an atomic drop. He whips Vinnie but Vinnie reverses again, only to get some Sole Food! Vinnie staggers and O’Ryan tags in. Taven tags in right after, but Chuckie back drops O’Ryan to then dropkick Taven down.

Chuckie fires up with the fans, and he shouts to his team to “Kill ’em!” Well that’s illegal but surely Chuckie isn’t talking literally. Isom and Kenny come in, and each member of the Kingdom is in a corner. Chuckie runs in at Vinnie, Isom runs at O’Ryan and Kenny runs at Taven, then they rotate! Then they rotate again. Then they hug! Aries says this is why Kenny isn’t champion anymore, he’s too busy goofing off. Kenny coordinates his team, and Isom runs at Taven. Taven boots Isom down, then stalks the rookie. He puts Isom in the Kingdom’s corner to grind in his boot. O’Ryan tags in to then tag in Vinnie.

They double whip Isom, but Isom ducks to push O’Ryan into Vinnie. Isom enziguri’s Vinnie then tilt-o-whirl backbreaker O’Ryan. He hits Taven for good measure, then hops up. O’Ryan climbs up to stop him, and then Vinnie yanks Isom down for a backbreaker of his own! Vinnie drags Isom over for stomps at the ropes. The Kingdom has control while we go to break.

ROH returns once more, and O’Ryan drags Isom up. He swings on Kenny and Chuckie just because, but that allows Isom to knee strike O’Ryan way out of the ring! Hot tag to Kenny! The K I N G jabs and spins O’Ryan for a backbreaker and lariat. Vinnie runs in but is countered into a chin check and roundhouse! Taven runs in to blindside Kenny. Kenny throws Taven to the apron for the Eddy Gordo Kick. Taven goes down, Kenny FLIES! Chuckie tags in as Kenny takes out Taven! Chuckie clotheslines O’Ryan, then rolls him out for a missile dropkick. Vinnie kicks Chuckie, then whips him corner to corner. He runs but misses, and Chuckie throws O’Ryan overhead onto Vinnie! Chuckie grabs O’Ryan, Falcon Arrow! Cover, but Vinnie breaks it.

Isom grabs Vinnie for furious forearms. Vinnie reverses, bicycle boot! Kenny SPINEBUSTERS, Taven gives Kenny a Kick of the King! Chuckie knees Taven, but O’Ryan Peles Chuckie! All six men are down but the fans are fired up! A 10 count starts while O’Ryan and Chuckie crawl. Hot tags to Taven and ISOM! Taven dares the rookie to bring it, so Isom does! Forearm and chop, forearm and chop, but Taven knees low. Taven whips Isom, but Isom reverses to scoop, Fall Away Slam! Isom kips up and fires up! Aries actually likes the energy, but knows experience is the only thing he’s missing. Isom hops up, Vinnie POPS a balloon in his ear!! Taven gives Isom a snapmare, then brings in Vinnie & O’Ryan. Taven brings Isom up, “Thy Kingdom Come!”

Powerbomb lift, the other two run, but are tripped up! Isom rolls Taven and even jackknifes, TWO!! So clsoe to a major upset. King throws Vinnie into a post while Chuckie brawls with O’Ryan. Isom fires off on Taven, runs, but into a pop up. Isom tries to headscissor but Taven blocks. Taven holds Isom back up, O’Ryan & Vinnie return, Rockstar Supernova! Cover, The Kingdom wins!

Winner: The Kingdom, Taven pinning; still ROH World Six Man Tag Team Champions

They throws the rookie out to add insult to injury as they celebrate their victory. Taven vows he’ll get his Grand Slam eventually, but for now, this is still their Kingdom. Will anyone find a way to dethrone the #FirstLastAndOnly Six Man champs once and for all?



My Thoughts:

A really great episode of ROH here, lots of great action without too much filler. Gresham VS Kushida was a solid, technically based match. The story for Gresham continues to be a struggle, and I’m still waiting for the day he brings back the ROH Pure Wrestling Championship so that he can finally get some accolades. SoCal Uncensored had a great promo segment that at least establishes them as Tweeners while going against the full Heel Briscoe Brothers. They kept saying six months even though this aired in July, but the point is the same: their time is running out but they’re going to put up a fight until the very end. I like that, and I’m predicting that at the very least, they have one last tag team championship match at Final Battle 2018 to really put a point on the deadline.

That women’s tag was great, if not a bit overbooked with false finishes. Nothing personal to Jenny Rose but she was the weak link in that match, while Oedo Tai definitely deserves the win. With the partnership between ROH and Stardom, I wouldn’t be surprised if we start getting All Women War of the Worlds type events to feature both promotions. The World Six Man Tag title main event was great, too. Aries was fun on commentary while the story naturally became about whether Eli Isom was ready for such a big moment. It would’ve been amazing if Isom’s team won, but I can see why they didn’t. If ROH wants to continue Aries VS King, that totally makes sense, and there are still plenty of other true trios that could challenge The Kingdom first. Next episode’s 9 Man Tag will likely determine a lot of that.

My Score: 8.2/10

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Mitchell’s WWE 205 Live Results & Report! (1/22/21)

And you thought last week was big!



Coverage 205 2021

205 Live doubles down on historic matches!

Not only are two 205 Live OG taking on a BRUTAL combination in Thatcher & Ciampa, but the WOMEN’S Dusty Cup comes to the purple ‘n’ orange!


  • Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: The Way’s Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell VS Gigi Dolin & Cora Jade; The Way wins and advances.
  • Men’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Tony Nese & Ariya Daivari VS Timothy Thatcher & Tommaso Ciampa; Thatcher & Ciampa win and advance.


205 Live explains how a certain Dusty Cup match came to be.

It was on NXT that Ashante “Thee” Adonis was in a match with the cruel Karrion Kross. Kross showed no mercy to Adonis as he hit him with TWO Doomsday Saido Suplexes and the blindside forearm smash. Then he would show no mercy to Adonis’ tag partner, Desmond Troy, by wrapping him up in the Krossjacket submission! The damage done was too severe for either man to compete tonight, and now they’re OUT of the Dusty Rhodes Classic! However, there is a new team that has been formed.

The Professor of Pain and the Psycho Killer put each other through torture inside the Fight Pit, and in the end, they found respect for each other. They’re now a killer combination and having their tag team debut TONIGHT, in the tag team tournament! Will they put the Premier Athlete and Persian Lion through similar suffering, all for a shot at history and the NXT Tag Team Championships?


Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: The Way’s Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell VS Gigi Dolin & Cora Jade!

How is this for history? 205 Live has its first-ever women’s match, and it is for this historic women’s tag team tournament! But will it be even more historic for the two debuting superstars? Or will Candice & Indi Wrestling dominate where the boys, Johnny & Austin, failed?

The teams sort out, Indi starts against Jade and the two circle. They tie up, go around, and Indi throws Jade down. Indi says Jade is NOT #Impressive, but Jade hits back with body shots! Indi knees low, whips Jade to a corner but Jade dodges! Jade tags Gigi and Gigi dodges Indi for a BOOT! Jade BOOTS Indi, then Gigi runs in to spin and ROCK Indi with a forearm! Indi hits back, drags Gigi over and tags in Candice. Candice stomps Gigi down, brings her up and through the ropes to choke her. The ref counts, Candice lets off at 4 to then CLUB Gigi down. Candice stomps Gigi, taunts Jade, but misses the leg drop!

Gigi rams Candice to the corner, tags in Jade, and Jade runs corner to corner to SHINING WIZARD! Jade brings Candice around but Indi is in the way of her run. Candice CLOBBERS Jade then covers, ONE! Candice hammers away on Jade, dribbles her off the mat, and fans boo as Candice drags Jade up with a chinlock. Candice has a neck wrench, fans chant “You Still Suck!” but Jade fights her way up. Candice CLUBS Jade, whips her to the Way’s corner, then runs in for a back body block! Indi tags in and she taunts Gigi before hitting Jade with a forearm! Indi throws Jade down to cover, TWO!

Indi keeps on Jade with a cravat for the neck crank. Jade fights up, fans rally and Jade throws body shots. Jade whips, Indi reverses and scoops for a sidewalk slam! Cover, TWO! Indi keeps her cool, tags Candice, and Candice wrenches Jade to snapmare and chinlock. Candice digs her knee in but Jade endures. Fans rally, Jade fights up, throws more body shots, then breaks free to uppercut! Jade runs but wobbles, but she elbows Candice again! Jade baits Candice into her own corner, dodges, but Candice gets Jade’s leg! Jade kicks Candice away, hot tags to Indi and Gigi! Gigi didges, fires off on Indi, KICKS away on the leg, then kicks that leg out! BUZZSAW!

Gigi DECKS Candice for good measure before she BOOTS Indi down! Cover, TWO! Gigi snarls as she drags Indi up and clubs her on the back. Tag to Jade, they bring Indi around together to double suplex but Indi fights it off! Indi BOOTS Jade, kicks Gigi and reels Gigi in for a suplex of her own! Indi holds Gigi up for a count of 10 before the SLAM! Gigi bails out so Indi tags Candice. Candice runs into Jade’s roll up, TWO! Jade Oklahoma Rolls, TWO! Ghost pin, TWO!! Candice flounders up but gets around Jade to roll her up, TWO!! Indi tags in and kicks Jade to then back suplex SLAM! Cover, The Way wins!

Winners: The Way, by pinfall (advance to the next round)

Candice and Indi are making their way into the semifinals! But will Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter be in the way of The Way making history?


Men’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Tony Nese & Ariya Daivari VS Timothy Thatcher & Tommaso Ciampa!

The Premier Athlete and Persian Lion have been here since day one of 205 Live, and were looking strong going into this match when it was against Adonis & Troy. But again, it has only been a couple days since NXT, are the Professor of Pain and Psycho Killer in any shape to face them on their home turf?

The teams sort out and Nese and Daivari seem to laugh at the two former enemies trying to be a team now. Daivari starts with Thatcher, they tie up and Daivari goes after an arm. Thatcher pries him off of that with a chinlock and then grinds into a headlock. Thatcher throws Daivari down, pulls on his head, but Daivari tries to pull hair. Thatcher just smiles that jagged tooth grin as he gets back up and goes after Daivari’s arm! Thatcher wrangles Daivari with a hammerlock, traps it with his legs then gets Daivari’s legs. Thatcher pulls Daivari into a Bow ‘n’ Arrow! Daivari endures, it becomes a cover, TWO!

Thatcher grabs at Daivari right away and has a facelock. Daivari endures, gets around, waistlocks, but Thatcher pries at the arm. Daivari tags Nese in, Nese rolls Thatcher up, TWO! Thatcher trips Nese and has the foot for a toe ‘n’ ankle. He shifts to a heel hook, then gets the arm but Nese scrambles around. Ciampa wants in, so Thatcher tags him in! Fans cheer as Ciampa wrenches Nese’s arm and drags him down. Nese resists the Fujiwara but Ciampa wrenches through again to a wristlock. Nese chinbars to get the arm, but Ciampa slips through to headlock. Nese throws Ciampa off but Ciampa headlocks and throws Nese down! Fans cheer as Ciampa grinds Nese into the mat.

Nese fights up, gets free to waistlock but Ciampa switches. Nese bucks Ciampa off, runs in and trips Ciampa up to go after the leg! Ciampa kicks Nese away, facelocks Nese in return and grinds him down. Fans rally, Nese moves around, and Nese powers Ciampa to the corner. Nese puts the leg on the rope, tags in Daivari, but Ciampa fights out with forearms and elbows! Ciampa DECKS Daivari but Nese trips him up! The ref reprimands but Daivari drags Nese to the corner to SLAM the leg into the post! And then he SLAMS the other leg! Thatcher storms over as Daivari keeps on the legs but the ref shouts at everyone to get back to their corners.

Daivari puts Ciampa in, drops elbows on the leg then stomps it, then drags Ciampa from Thatcher. Daivari drops more elbows, stomps the leg more, then clamps onto the leg to step through, for a Figure Four! Ciampa endures, Thatcher coaches him and the fans rally up! Ciampa drags himself and Daivari over but Nese gets in to hit Thatcher! The ref has to keep Thatcher back but Nese drags Daivari and Ciampa away! Nese tags in to stomp away on Ciampa, and Daivari finally lets Ciampa out of the hold. Fans boo and jeer while Nese flexes. Nese drags Ciampa over, tags in Daivari, and they split the wishbone on Ciampa!

Nese runs at Thatcher but Thatcher DECKS him first! Daivari has Ciampa’s leg but Ciampa enziguris back! Tag to Thatcher! Thatcher clinches Daivari for a BELLY2BELLY! Then a BELLYBELLY for Nese! EuroUppers for both Cruiserweights back and forth! Nese runs back in but Thatcher has the arm! Thatcher clamps on but has to stop Daivari first. HEEL HOOK! Nese pulls Thatcher’s ears and HOTSHOT BULLDOGS! Thatcher is down, Nese tags in, and Nese hurries to PREMIER TRIANGLE MOONSAULT! Tag back to Daivari and Daivari climbs up, LION SPLASH! Cover, but Ciampa breaks it!

Fans fire up as Ciampa returns to his corner. Daivari and Thatcher crawl, Nese tags in first! Thatcher kicks Nese away, and tags Ciampa back in! Ciampa rallies on Nese and Daivari with forearms and CHOPS! Ciampa CHOPS Daivari again but Nese dropkicks the bad leg out! Nese and Daivari both go up, DOUBLE- DECKED! Nese gets a knee, Daivari gets a forearm! Thatcher and Ciampa glare at each other, Ciampa gives Nese WILLOW’S BELL! Cover, Ciampa & Thatcher win!!

Winners: Tommaso Ciampa & Timothy Thatcher, by pinfall (advance to the next round)

These two were tearing each other apart on NXT, but they’re standing together on 205 Live! Will Ciampa and Thatcher tear their way through the tournament to put their names on the Dusty Cup?

My Thoughts:

A good episode, though with some obvious results. While Gigi Dolin (Priscilla Kelly) and Cora Jade (Elayna Black) are very good wrestlers, they weren’t going to beat The Way, and it says a lot that Indi got the pin for this one. Candice & Indi are among the favorites to win the tournament, and I’m betting on a stellar match between them and KC Squared, Catanzaro & Carter. Gigi & Jade still made a good combination, and their aesthetics match up well, I hope they stick together.

Ciampa & Thatcher becoming a team after their Fight Pit match is a pretty cool way to follow up, and naturally they were going to beat the first team they faced. The OG had good combinations, but Nese and Daivari have been perennial jobbers to the stars even before this. Thatcher & Ciampa take on Undisputed Era next and that is going to be a great match that could go either way. Given the history between Undisputed Era and the current tag team champions, Lorcan & Burch, I give it 51-49, UE wins so that they can get a shot at the champions.

My Score: 8/10

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Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Results & Report! (1/22/21)

Will Apollo be able to #ThinkBig and be a champion?



Coverage SmackDown 2021

Big time challenges go down on SmackDown!

SmackDown goes big as Big E takes on Apollo Crews’ rematch challenge, and Bayley takes on Bianca Belair in the ULTIMATE obstacle course challenge!


  • Charlotte Flair & Asuka VS The Riott Squad w/ Billie Kay; Charlotte & Asuka win.
  • Cesaro VS Dolph Ziggler; Cesaro wins.
  • Sasha Banks VS Reginald w/ Carmella; Sasha wins.
  • WWE Intercontinental Championship: Big E VS Apollo Crews; Crews wins by disqualification, Big E retains the title.
  • Ultimate Athletic Obstacle Course Challenge: Bayley VS Bianca Belair; Bianca wins.
  • Dominik Mysterio VS King Corbin; Corbin wins.
  • Adam Pearce VS Paul Heyman w/ Roman Reigns; No Contest.


Roman Reigns heads to the ring!

The Head of the Table, with Special Counsel, Paul Heyman, is back to open SmackDown, but no Jey Uso? Roman and Heyman are not in a good mood after the bait ‘n’ switch Adam Pearce pulled over on them with Kevin Owens. Heyman hands Roman a mic as fans boo and give thumbs down on their screens. “So KO said he was going to deliver a message today, huh?” Or is he not? No, we’re not going to see Kevin Owens tonight because Roman said so. Now let’s talk about last week and “card subject to change.” Real clever. A lot of people made comments about Pearce getting one past them, outsmarted them.

But let’s make this clear: “That way of thinking is beneath me.” Card subject to change is how losers think. It’s how people who are scared to come to work think. Roman doesn’t miss appearances, he puts in work! Legitimately! It took Roman’ sown health being at risk during a pandemic to keep him away. So he never wants to hear anyone say anything about him missing appearances. But what if Roma started thinking like “a puss” like Pearce, talking about his elbow and shoulder hurting. No one would doubt it because of the work Roman puts in! Roman’s knees hurt, and so does his neck. But what else? His ankles have been bad since college. And his back… Heyman says just the weight of it all is making Roman’s back hurt, because Roman’s been carrying the WWE for YEARS!

But what if Roman’s back continues to hurt until the Royal Rumble? What if he can’t make it because of that? Pearce walks out and says this is going too far. Heyman says Pearce is being rude not even addressing Roman. Pearce says this is spiraling out of control, and Roman can’t believe he wants to talk about control. We know who is in control. But what’s out of control is that Pearce is going against Roman. That Pearce is doing a favor and putting Kevin back into the Universal title picture. And the fact that Pearce is favoring Kevin! This isn’t even really a favor. Pearce is Kevin’s BITCH! And he’s also Roman’s bitch.

But what Roman really can’t stand right now, is Pearce having the audacity coming out here and complaining about how his body feels. Pearce hasn’t been in a match for six YEARS, but he’s talking about how his body hurts. Pearce is next to the thoroughbred of the WWE, a man who does 52 weeks a year, multiple days a week! Roman never complained, never stopped and busts his ass for this place, and that is why Roman is who Roman is! And Pearce is going to complain, whine, MOAN about stuff? “No wonder you never made it to the WWE.” Heyman chuckles at that one.

Pearce asks if this is funny to Heyman. It is. Pearce can take it from Roman but he won’t take it from Heyman. Oh? Well that’s disrespectful. Disrespecting Heyman is disrespecting Roman. Heyman, straighten Pearce out. Heyman is given the mic to speak. Pearce disrespected the Tribal Chief and his family. Heyman’s known his family 15 years. Roman’s family would not be friends with someone who isn’t tough! Do you know what it is like to be a friend of the Anoa’i family? Everyone buys into Heyman’s persona, that he’s “impotent as a man.” Heyman’s from New York, he whoop yo’ ASS for disrespecting the chief. Wanna stare Heyman down?

Heyman may not be a lawyer but he’s from a synagogue full of them. In Florida, a verbal contract is BINDING. So if you want something big for the main event, how about this? Pearce VS PAUL HEYMAN! What?! Heyman offers a handshake, and Pearce TAKES IT! The challenge is accepted!! Pearce will have his first match in six years, against Paul E. Dangerously! Roman says at the end of the night, Pearce gets his ass kicked. #BelieveThat.


Sami Zayn heads to the ring!

He has a sign with #JusticeForSami on it, and he brings out cuffs?! Sami is going to cuff himself to the ringside barriers as a form of protest because he is not part of tonight’s Intercontinental Championship! How will WWE officials respond to Sami’s sudden SmackDown sit-in?

SmackDown returns and Sami claims he is being victimized, but he will enter the Royal Rumble to counter it! Sami says he had Apollo Crews beat, though with hands somehow on Apollo’s tights. But then Apollo does the same thing back to him and Apollo wins?! That is not fair! But then the Empress of Tomorrow interrupts Sami with her entrance, followed by The Queen’s! The WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions are here!

Charlotte Flair & Asuka VS The Riott Squad w/ Billie Kay!

The Queens of Tomorrow have a lot going on as individuals on Raw, but they return to SmackDown to focus on their teamwork! Meanwhile, Liv Morgan & Ruby Riott haven’t been able to focus with the Femme Fatale frantically interfering. Will Billie be a burden as the Squad has a chance at earning a championship opportunity?

As the teams sort out, Natalya and Tamina are watching from backstage. The bell rings as Charlotte and Ruby start. They tie up, are in a deadlock, but Charlotte pushes Ruby to ropes. Ruby pushes back but Charlotte headlocks and throws Ruby down. Ruby keeps her shoulders up, fights to her feet, but Asuka tags in. Charlotte snapmares Ruby, Asuka runs Ruby over with a shoulder! Asuka headlocks Ruby, Ruby fights up but Charlotte tags back in. The Queens of Tomorrow hand Ruby off and Charlotte bumps Ruby off buckles! Charlotte digs her boot into Ruby’s head but lets off at 4. Ruby flounders, Charlotte taunts her to reach for Liv, then CLUBS her down.

Charlotte looms over Ruby, drags her up and whips her to a corner hard! Ruby falls over, Billie protests on the apron but Charlotte runs her off. Ruby rushes at Charlotte but into an elbow! Liv tags in as Billie shouts at Charlotte! Ruby rushes Charlotte but is thrown out, and Charlotte grabs at Billie! Liv apron dropkicks Charlotte back in! Liv hurries up top and leaps to crossbody! Cover, TWO! Billie can’t believe she’s being helpful as SmackDown goes to break!

SmackDown returns again and Charlotte blocks a buckle bump to give a buckle bump! Charlotte stomps away on Liv, backs off as the ref counts, and lets out a “WOO~!” Fans clap on their screens, Charlotte scoops Liv but Liv slips out. Liv runs, Ruby tags in, Liv huricanranas and Ruby runs in to tilt-o-whirl! Charlotte blocks the headscissors but Ruby fires off forearms! Ruby goes up and gives Charlotte DEADLY NIGHTSHADE! Cover, TWO! Tag to Liv, Sami is still filming his protest, and the Squad double SLAMS Charlotte down! Cover, ONE! Liv tags Ruby back in, they stomp away on Charlotte in a corner, and then tag again.

Ruby and Liv bring Charlotte out, double whip but charlotte stops herself to kick and forearm and CHOP! Charlotte CHOPS away, throws Ruby into buckles then kicks Liv low! EXPLODER! And kip up! Charlotte fires up but misses Liv in the corner. Liv runs into the backbreaker and BUCKLE SHOT! Tag to Asuka, SLIDING WIZARD! Cover, Ruby breaks it! Ruby runs but into Charlotte’s BOOT! Liv dropkicks Charlotte and enziguris Asuka! But Asuka has the leg for an ANKLE LOCK! Liv tries to roll through but gets caught to a trapped-leg GERMAN SUPLEX! Asuka kicks but misses, Liv rolls her to swing. Asuka blocks, reels Liv in, but Ruby tags!

Asuka lets Liv go to get Ruby, but Billie distracts! The O’Conner roll is rolled over but Billie argues too long! That costs Ruby, she has to kick Asuka! Liv saves Ruby from the hip attack but falls on Billie! Ruby SUPERKICKS but Asuka counters the Riott Kick to the pop-up KNEE! Asuka runs, tags Charlotte, CODE BREAKER to NATURAL SELECTION! Cover, the champions win!

Winners: Charlotte Flair & Asuka, by pinfall

Billie went from helping to hindering the Squad again! Will this partnership fall apart before Billie’s very eyes?


Billie finds the Squad backstage.

She apologizes for, for… For what, Billie? Stopping Ruby from pinning Asuka? Messing this opportunity up for them?! Yeah… Well for someone who doesn’t mean to, she’s pretty good at it. Maybe that should be put on the resume. Well, all the great teams have overcome obstacles! Billie has good news, though. She talked to Sonya Deville and the Squad is in the Women’s Rumble match! They can practice throwing Billie out over the ropes! Billie can pretend to be Bianca or Mella! No, there is no “us” anymore. The Squad works better when it’s just Ruby and Liv. Sorry. Will Billie ever catch a break?


Daniel Bryan is here!

And he goes past Sami’s new sign, where SAMI is an acronym: Stand Against Moral Injustice. Clever. Bryan goes to the ring and fans join in the “YES!” fingers on their screens. Bryan says a week from this Sunday is one of the most unique and historic traditions in the WWE, the Royal Rumble match. And even saying that, this time of year, a chill goes down Bryan’s spine. It’s a little hard to explain why but Bryan will give it his best shot. “It’s the uncertainty of what number you’re going to. It’s watching the countdown for every superstar that comes out. It’s waiting for that buzzer to hit, for that music to play, for you to run down, nobody knows that you’re coming, and you don’t know who’s coming out next!

“It’s the exhilaration of competing against 29 other superstars that could go over an hour, and it’s every man for themselves.” One of the most challenging, grueling things you can do in the WWE, and that makes Bryan feel alive. Despite all the pain, all the uncertainty, it is absolutely worth it because the winner gets to face the champion of their choosing in the main event of WrestleMania! Bryan is very proud of his career, he’s accomplished a lot. But the one thing he has never done is win a Royal Rumble! Experts, commentary, Michael Cole even, will say- Cesaro interrupts!

Cesaro thought he beat some sense into Bryan last week, but here Bryan is again talking about how he’ll win the Rumble. Cesaro appreciates Bryan explaining the rules, but Cesaro could’ve done it better and in five languages. But that’s besides the point. Bryan is NOT winning this year’s Rumble, Cesaro is. As the first-ever Andre the Giant Battle Royal winner, Cesaro is an expert on this. Bryan didn’t forget about the loss, but instead of talking, how about putting the mics down, and they can fight it out again? Cesaro says no. Cesaro is sick and tired of proving himself week after week doing the same thing over and over! He beat Bryan, and Bryan isn’t dressed for the occasion, Cesaro issues an open challenge! Anyone who has already declared for the Rumble, come on down!

The one to answer the open challenge is… Dolph Ziggler! One half of the SmackDown Tag Team Champions is here asking about the conversation. Ziggler has been in the second most Rumbles ever. Ziggler can go all night long, ask anyone. And aside from himself and his colleague, Robert Roode, there is no one that can go toe-to-toe with Ziggler except maybe Cesaro. No offense to Bryan but it ain’t 2014 anymore. But if we’re talking about a Rumble challenge, Ziggler wants to win to go to Mania and get paid! So Bryan, scoot over, and Cesaro, consider your challenge accepted. Will the Show-Off show up the Swiss Cyborg?

Cesaro VS Dolph Ziggler!

SmackDown returns and Bryan has joined commentary for this great match-up already underway. Ziggler has Cesaro down and has a leg, gets a cover, TWO! Cesaro gets a lateral press but Ziggler keeps his shoulder up. Cesaro pushes him around, gut wrenches and lifts but Ziggler resists by grabbing Cesaro’s leg again. Ziggler shifts, rolls, has a cover, ONE! Cesaro tries a cover, ONE! Cesaro waistlocks but Ziggler gets the ropes. Ziggler elbows Cesaro away then jumps on for a sleeper hold! Cesaro stays up, RAMS Ziggler into buckles and is free. Cesaro runs in to BLAST Ziggler with that EuroUpper! Ziggler flounders into a trip and then a SWISS SWING!

Cesaro brings Ziggler around and around for a count of 10, then maybe 15 even, or 20! Cesaro throws Ziggler, covers, TWO! Ziggler survives the swing, Cesaro stalks him to a corner, then runs in, only to get POST! Ziggler rolls Cesaro up, TWO! Cesaro back drops, Ziggler sunset flips, TWO! Cesaro sits on the cover, TWO! Ziggler sunsets, TWO! Cesaro, TWO! Ziggler, TOW! Cesaro high stacks, TWO! Ziggler pops him to a cover, TWO! SUPER- No, Cesaro blocks but uppercuts into a backslide,. Cesaro slips out, but into a ZIGZAG! Cover, TWO!! And yes, Sami is still protesting. He’s even memeing! “Sami was robbed, change my mind.”

Cesaro and Ziggler slowly rise and Ziggler sleeper holds again! Cesaro gets up, shifts Ziggler from backpack to a front facelock, for a suplex! Ziggler knees free, kicks low then runs, into a pop-up! Ziggler tries to huricanrana, but Cesaro makes it a NEUTRALIZER! Cover, Cesaro wins!

Winner: Cesaro, by pinfall

Michael Cole points out this is two times in a row that Cesaro has beaten a former world champion! Will Cesaro take the Rumble and be a WrestleMania contender?


Sasha Banks VS Reginald w/ Carmella!

It is very rare for WWE to do co-ed matches like this, and certain against a champion like The Boss against the sommelier in employment of The Untouchable Princess of Staten Island. Will Reginald ruin Sasha’s momentum towards the rematch with Mella?

SmackDown returns and Mella makes her entrance to accompany Reginald to the ring, two other assistants bringing the champagne and drinking glasses to the ring for them. Mella and the champagne join commentary as the bell rings. Sasha tells Reggie it’s time to put up or shut up, but Reggie presents her with an orange rose. Sasha accepts the rose but goes to slap Reggie! He blocks, only for Sasha to SLAP him with the other hand! Sasha knuckle locks, goes up and uses the ropes to arm-drag, but Reggie handsprings through! Mella says that’s her Reggie! Reggie waistlocks but Sasha resists the lift and slips out the back to switch. Reggie does the same and rolls right out of the ring!

Reggie plays some cat ‘n’ mouse and does a back flip off the apron! But Sasha wrecks him with a baseball slide dropkick! Sasha whips Reggie at the steel steps but Reggie leaps up and over! Mella applauds the bit of flair, Sasha gives chase, they go in the ring and speed things up with hurdle for hurdle. Reggie shows off with that flip, Sasha goes up and springboards, but Reggie blocks the sunset flip! Reggie wheelbarrows Sasha but she turns that into a BULLDOG! Sasha wants Mella to see why she’s the boss, but Sasha misses the meteora to hit buckles! Sasha avoids Reggie’s elbow drop, Oklahoma roll but Reggie slips out!

Reggie avoids Sasha’s dropkick to bomb lift, but Sasha arm-drags free! Sasha runs in but is put on the apron, but she knees Reggie away! Sasha goes up, leaps, crossbody but Reggie holds her up! Reggie pops Sasha up but into another arm-drag! Reggie is sent out, Sasha hurries to the apron, METEORA! Sasha slaps the champagne out of Mella’s hand! Sasha goes back into the ring with Reggie, brings him in for a backstabber but he rolls through! Sasha kicks him, and knuckle locks to flip up and into another METEORA! Mella sneers but Sasha tilt-o-whirls and drags Reggie down by his arm! BANK STATEMENT!! Reggie taps, Sasha wins!

Winner: Sasha Banks, by submission

Sasha got her revenge on Reggie, and throws him out to Mella! Will Sasha do the same to the Princess at the Royal Rumble?


Roman Reigns sits in his private room.

Heyman says Roman was brilliant. They got Pearce! “We? What’re you talking about?” Heyman knew what Roman was up to, he fed right into it. Roman simply passed Heyman the mic to do what he does better than anyone, and that is verbally rip someone to shreds. Roman didn’t say Heyman should challenge Pearce to a match. But Heyman has stepped into it, so he has to do this. Roman didn’t hire some punk to be Special Counsel, he hired a man. So Heyman needs to go out there and represent Roman as a man and handle business. “Paul, be a man. Handle your business.” The Special Counsel has no words, will he have no defense against Pearce?


WWE Intercontinental Championship: Big E VS Apollo Crews!

Sami Zayn is irate as Big E taunts him with the belt. But Sami is not the champion’s concern, he’s taking on the man in the ring! Big E and Apollo have been in friendly competition, but after what Heyman told both of them over these last few weeks on Talking Smack, will all of that go out the window?

The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and it’s time to #ThinkBig or go home!

Apollo rushes Big E but right into an OVERHEAD SUPLEX! Apollo goes to the apron, Big E follows and stomps him, to then run and APRON SPLASH! Big E is fired up and gets back in to run at Apollo. Apollo elbows back, BOOTS back, then runs, into a scoop! Apollo slips off, and ENZIGURIS! Big E wobbles into a BOOT! Standing moonsault! Cover, TWO! Apollo keeps focus as he stalks Big E. Apollo waistlocks and GERMAN SUPLEXES Big E! Apollo holds on to GERMAN again! Big E elbows over and over until he’s free, and he gets Apollo with the Urenag-E! Cover, TWO! Big E keeps his cool as he goes out after Apollo.

Big E and Apollo end up by the announce desk. Big E tells Apollo he’ll never make the mistake of disrespecting him again. Apollo pushes Big E away, then dodges him to go up the apron and MOONSAULT! Direct hit and down goes Big E! Apollo gets Big E back in at the ring count of 8 then climbs up top! Big E hits Apollo first then climbs up to join him. Big E throws forearms, stands Apollo up, but Apollo resists the superplex! Apollo throws headbutts as fans clap on their screens! Big E falls back, Apollo adjusts, but Sami uncuffs himself! Sami’s strike is over as Apollo leaps to missile dropkick Big E!

Apollo resets but Sami HELLUVA KICKS him!! SAMI SCREWS APOLLO!

Winner: Apollo Crews by disqualification (Big E is still WWE Intercontinental Championship)

And then Sami HELLUVA KICKS Big E! And Sami has the nerve to talk about injustice! Sami says HE is the champion, but that this is what Big E and Apollo deserve! Will Sami get what he deserves soon enough?


Kevin Owens speaks.

“I showed up to work today, and I was told I couldn’t get into the building because Roman Reigns pulled some strings to make sure I wouldn’t be there. Roman, dude… It’s fine. But just know this: at the Royal Rumble, there’s no more strings for you to pull.” At the Rumble, they will settle this once and for all. And Roman calls Kevin “a cockroach that won’t die,” and tells him to just stop fighting, but Kevin can’t do that. Roman has yet to beat Kevin like the champion he claims to be. Roman did not earn those victories. The family did that for him.

And the other reason Kevin keeps fighting is this. Kevin has a lot of tattoos, and they all have a story behind them. He has his wife’s name on his wrist, his kids’ names on the other side, then one to remind him of his parents. Kevin fights for all of them, but he has tattoos on his knuckles. These are his grandfathers’ initials: M for Melvin, his dad’s dad, and P is for Pierre, his mom’s dad. Those men had Kevin’s back all the way. They were his biggest fans, and nothing made them happier than seeing Kevin in the ring. The biggest regret Kevin will have is that he didn’t make it to the WWE in time for them to see, because they both passed away just before.

But they will always be with Kevin. The mark they left on Kevin will always be there, because both men battled illnesses that should’ve made their lives a lot shorter. Those two men refused to quit, and because of that, Kevin was lucky to have many, many great years with them. So how can Kevin stop fighting? That is why Kevin will not stay away and why he will #JustKeepFighting. That is why come Royal Rumble, Kevin will be the Last Man Standing.


The Street Profits have a basket.

Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins see Ziggler talking with Sonya, and have a quick question: Are you ready~, ready~? This is a celebratory basket for congratulating Sonya on her new job and office! But don’t jump the gun! They’re not just congratulating her on the new gig. She sits next to Pearce, looking pretty, but they have business. It has been two, two weeks, since the Profits lost the SmackDown Tag Team Championships against Ziggler & Roode, Entertainment Dysfunction. Put that on a t-shirt, it’ll make millions! But that aside, the Profits- Sonya knows they want their rematch. She’s so smart!

Sonya knows they were champions for 312 days, won two Slammy Awards, so yes they deserve a rematch. But Ford is still recovering from the leg injury. If he gets in that ring too soon, gets hurt and is out of action, that hurts SmackDown as a whole. So hear her out: For now, hang out, keep doing your segments to hype the show, and let another team get the opportunity. Then when Ford is 100%, he and Dawkins get back in the game and back in the title picture. Cool with t hat, fam? yeah, that’s cool. Golly, Sonya, thanks for your concern. Enjoy the basket! It’s expensive. But will the long wait really work out in the Profits’ favor?


Ultimate Athletic Obstacle Course Challenge: Bayley VS Bianca Belair!

The Role Model wants The EST to prove she’s still got it when it comes to being the strongest, the fastest, the roughest, the toughest, etc. Therefore, SmackDown is setting up a truly challenging obstacle course for them both to run! Who backs up their words, after the break?

SmackDown returns and Michael Cole presides over this special competition, and gives the introductions for Bianca, then for Bayley. Bayley takes over and says DING DONG, BYE Cole. This is her show now! And look, Bianca, this is what Bayley has for her. America Ninja Warrior ain’t got nothing on UAOCC! This is of course timed, starting right here with the “big ol’ 400 pound tractor tire,” which you only need to flip once. Go down the ramp, take on the short hurdles, climb the trio of military walls. And then Bayley even got advice from Chad Gable and Alpha Academy, he will put you through the full body test, the fireman’s carry!

But that’s not all! The very last challenge is grab the basketball, put it through the net, and time stops at the exact moment the ball exits the bottom of the net! The competitor with the shortest time is of course the winner! Let’s get the clock going, and Bayley wants to go first. Bianca says that’s fine, and we begin… NOW! Bayley flips the tire, hurries down the ramp, though not quite that quickly, and takes on the hop hurdles to go right at the military walls. The short one seems to throw her off, and she just weaves around them?! Is that allowed?

Bayley fireman’s carries Gable, and he seems to be heavier than he looks. Bianca “cheers” Bayley on as she goes from one end to another, then she gets the ball to DUNK- no, wait, there! Bayley finishes at 1:12. But she says she did Bianca a favor. “Let’s EST up this course,” all for Bianca. Oh, the hurdles are now full hurdles, and Bianca wraps her braid. GO! Bianca easily flips the tire, runs down the ramp., leaps the hurdles, leaps the walls, but she isn’t carrying Gable, but OTIS! Bianca has 40 seconds, she carries the 330 pound Otis with ease, then gets the ball and even dares Bayley to play D! She breaks ankles and DUNKS! She had 17 seconds to spare!

Winner: Bianca Belair

Sorry, Bayley, but that’s the power of the EST! Bayley is a sore loser and throws the ball at Bianca! And then hammers away with forearms and stomps! The ref reprimands but Bayley doesn’t care, as she POSTS Bianca and knocks down the basketball hoop! Bayley storms off, perhaps having proven she’s the meanest on the roster.


Rey Mysterio coaches Dominik backstage.

Rey reviews with Dom that Baron Corbin is a former boxer, so he has to watch out for the hands. Dom says Rey can trust him to have this. Dom is comfortable with his skills and has prepared. Okay, then we’ll do it his way. But if something goes wrong, they do it Rey’s way. That’s fair. Dom heads out, will he be able to trump the Wolf King?


Dominik Mysterio VS King Corbin!

SmackDown returns as Corbin is already in the ring. Dominik makes his entrance, leaving Rey backstage so he can handle things. The bell rings and Dom circles with Corbin. They tie up, Corbin powers Dom to a corner but Dom dodges the hands to throw hands of his own! Dom rams his shoulder in but Corbin shoves him away. Dom dropkicks but Corbin stays up. Dom whips, Corbin reverses but Dom wheelbarrows and throws Corbin out of the ring! The ring count climbs but Dom slingshots, only for Corbin to get clear and CLOBBER him! Corbin drags Dom up and into the ring, covers, TWO! Corbin already glares at the ref as he grows annoyed.

Corbin stalks Dom, drags him to ropes and stands on him! The ref counts, Corbin hops off at 4, then drags Dom up to throw body shots! The ref counts, Corbin lets off at 4 again, then stands Dom up. Corbin whips Dom corner to corner hard! Dom bounces off buckles to hit the mat, and Corbin takes his time bringing Dom back up. Corbin brings Dom around, reel shim in but Dom slips out to dropkick a leg! Corbin ends up on ropes, Dom dials it up but the call is blocked! Corbin drags Dom from ropes, yanks but Dom lands on his feet, only for Corbin to DECK him! Corbin reels Dom in and hits END OF DAYS! Cover, Corbin wins!

Winner: Baron Corbin, by pinfall

The Wolf King wins because he did this his way! Will the Mysterios regroup and draw up a winning game plan?


Adam Pearce VS Paul Heyman w/ Roman Reigns!

Scrap Daddy’s switcheroo not only got the better of the Special Counsel last week, it might be why he stuck his foot in his mouth this week! Will Pearce’s return to the ring also get the better of Paul E. Dangerously? Has the Head of the Table truly left Heyman hanging?

Heyman is taping his hands on his way to the ring, but stumbles off the steps? The ref checks on Heyman but he says he’s fine. Give him a minute to walk it off. Heyman fumbles on the steps again and Pearce smells a plot. After all, he let his “bum leg” be why Kevin Owens is back in the title match. And just as he knew, Heyman cites “card subject to change.” This was the trump card Heyman had up his sleeve! Roman did NOT leave the building, he’s heading to the ring! Now that the bait ‘n’ switch is on the other foot, will Scrap Daddy be scrap metal?

Adam Pearce VS Roman Reigns w/ Paul Heyman!

Roman SUPERMAN PUNCHES Pearce the second he’s in the ring! This isn’t even a match because the bell hasn’t rung! Heyman says he has obviously found a suitable replacement, and Roman is pulling steps apart. Pearce throws a haymaker! Roman glares at Pearce, and LOW BLOW KICKS him! And then throws Pearce OVER the barriers! Roman is snarling as he goes around the way to drag Pearce up and throw him INTO ThunderDome screens! And then he drags Pearce up to throw heavy forearms! And then throws him into stage wall! Fans give thumbs down but that’s not going to save Pearce from Roman’s wrath!

Roman fireman’s carries Pearce and puts him on the upper level, the same place he threw Kevin off of. But speaking of, Kevin runs in and attacks Roman! Kevin saves Pearce as he throws haymakers and bumps Roman off barriers! Roman throws Kevin into screens, throws haymakers of his own, then they brawl to ringside! It’s Royal Rumble come early! Roman puts Kevin in the ring, storms in but into a USUPERKICK! Roman SUPERMAN PUNCH- NO! STUNNER from Kevin!! Kevin dares Roman to get back up! Roman sputters as he gets out of the ring but Kevin whips him into barriers! And clubs away on his back!

Referees rush out to try and stop this, and Kevin backs off to cool off. But then Kevin comes back to STOMP Roman into barriers! Roman flounders back up, referees try to talk Kevin down, and even Pat Buck, Pearce’s coworker. But Kevin gets past them to give Roman another STUNNER! Kevin wants Heyman to say something but Heyman has nothing to say! So Kevin brings Roman over, pops him up, POWERBOMB through the announce desk!! Kevin is pulling steel steps apart! The refs keep him from bringing that over to Roman! Kevin says Roman’s lucky the officials are here to stop him, but it won’t happen at the Royal Rumble! Will Kevin truly #StunTheWorld when he is THE Last Man Standing?

My Thoughts:

A great SmackDown that honestly could’ve been a go-home to the Royal Rumble in some cases. Charlotte & Asuka VS Riott Squad was good, but naturally the champions win, mostly because Billie was too involved. She has been kicked out of the Riott Squad, though she wasn’t really a member to begin with, but I feel like they could’ve gone another week, though. Natty & Tamina were watching backstage, I wouldn’t mind seeing them get a match with Charlotte & Asuka, even if they were to lose. The match of Sasha Banks VS Reginald was pretty good, mostly because Reggie is insanely athletic. Depending on how the story goes of him being Mella’s sommelier, maybe he can split off and get into like 205 Live and the Cruiserweight Division to freshen things up a bit.

But of course Sasha wins, she’s the champion. I have a feeling this means the go-home sees Mella standing tall so that Sasha is still the favored to win. The “Ultimate” obstacle course challenge was very clearly going to be won by Bianca, but I commend Bayley for trying to rig it in her favor. Though, shouldn’t she have been penalized or even disqualified for outright skipping those military style walls? Pretty sure we’re getting a match between the two, and Bianca can sell the bad arm to “overcome” it and win, for big momentum going into the Women’s Rumble.

The Profits had a good segment with Sonya, and I like that, at least on the surface, Sonya is being a responsible official and having the Profits wait so they can be healed up. But I wonder if there will even be defenses in that time, as there aren’t many tag teams on SmackDown. It’s mostly the champs, the Profits, Cesaro-Nakamura, and maybe Alpha Academy, aka Gable & Otis. Dom VS Corbin felt like filler just to get things to what Rey was talking about last week, which should’ve just been what we got this week. Unless it was because the person they have in mind (Cain Velasquez) isn’t available right now because of some COVID concerns. That I’d understand.

Sami Zayn “protesting” this episode just so he’d be ringside for the Intercontinental Championship was a pretty good long game for the episode. Sami’s signs were clever, but it does seem a shame for what should’ve been a huge match. Maybe we get another Triple Threat for this title, and that is the way Big E loses. Though, I think it’d work well if Big E won, making his reign feel even bigger from having dealt with two contenders. After that, Big E can face just about anyone else on the roster, such as Nakamura, Cesaro or even Otis. And speaking of, Cesaro had a good promo with Bryan and a really good match with Ziggler, but I feel like all these wins are setting Cesaro up to not win the Rumble. But I said the same thing about Bryan making it his mission to win the reason he won’t, so maybe as far as SmackDown goes, it’s between the two of them as Rumble finalists.

And again, we got a lot of great stuff out of the Roman Reigns story. The opening promo segment was really good, it helped set up the main event, and gave a great tease of Pearce VS Heyman. But Heyman using the fake injury and “card subject to change” back on Pearce was also very clever, and naturally it was Roman who would beat Pearce up to get back at him for everything so far. Kevin had a really good promo, made a great save, and got to stand tall tonight with the table bomb. I’m curious as to Kevin’s part in the go-home next week. I can’t see him standing tall two weeks in a row just to keep the math in Roman’s favor, so maybe Roman turns this around to then defy the math and still retain the title. I’m pretty sure Roman does retain, and we leave it up to the Rumble to decide the rest.

My Score: 8.5/10

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