The Raw Women’s Champion prepares for Super Show Down by taking on the Squad Leader, Ruby Riott! Will Ronda Rousey wreck Ruby before arriving in Melbourne?
- Dean Ambrose VS Braun Strowman; Strowman wins, by disqualification.
- Roman Reigns VS Dolph Ziggler; Reigns wins.
- Ronda Rousey VS Ruby Riott w/ The Riott Squad; Rousey wins.
- Bobby Roode w/ Chad Gable VS Konnor w/ Viktor; Konnor wins.
- The B-Team VS The Revival; The B-Team wins.
- Seth Rollins VS Drew McIntyre; McIntyre wins.
- Bobby Lashley VS Kevin Owens; Owens wins.
- Bayley w/ Finn Balor VS Alicia Fox w/ Jinder Mahal & Sunil Singh; Bayley wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Dean Ambrose heads to the ring!
The Lunatic Fringe is still loyal to The Shield, even after The Pack’s Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre argued hard that Ambrose wasn’t being appreciated by his friends. Charli Caruso gets to business with her interview bringing up this disgruntled Dean theory The Pack has. Are there any truths to those claims? Any truth to what they said? Well, there are, actually. In that Ambrose is the only one not a champion. And he was champion before, but then went down with injury and was quickly replaced. But then, has Ambrose ever considered leaving the Shield? “Sure.” Maybe he already did, maybe he doesn’t need his vest and Shield tags. Maybe these don’t mean as much as they used to. Heck, he might’ve even ran Roman Reigns off the road on the way here.
Is Ambrose being sarcastic? People are asking questions. What kind of questions? “Why, after all this time, am I still in the Shield? Am I going to abandon them? Turn my back on them?” Are fans wondering when Ambrose is just goign to snap, he’s “The Lunatic” and all that. Maybe people are thinking Ambrose is waiting for the perfect time, “when nobody’s looking”, to just slip the knife into their backs. Is that what? No, people were asking questions about the moment Ambrose was literally between The Shield and The Pack, and still chose The Shield. What was going through his mind there?
What do they want him to say? Do they think he is thinking, “Why did I come back to Raw in the first place?” Ambrose could be on SmackDown or somewhere different entirely because he’s been cleaning up after The Shield. Maybe he’s sick and tired over “playing” Shield. Ambrose wants everyone to stop trying to understand him, and just judge him by his actions. He’s done as he’s always done: stepped up and stood by his brothers. The Shield isn’t a business, it’s not a brand, it’s a brotherhood. “And we will always ride into battle together.” The Lunatic finishes speaking, but out comes the Constable, Baron Corbin. “Wow, Dean, that was a really good story about brotherhood,” but it sounded more like whining to Corbin. Is something gnawing at that little brain of Ambrose’s?
Is Corbin a therapist now on top of being “the world’s largest substitute teacher”? Or is Corbin salty because he can’t put the Shield down? Corbin admits his team fell short. But The Shield wasn’t tearing the place apart and no cops were called, so that’s a win. But this is now about Ambrose and his opportunities. Ambrose has three options for his match tonight: 1) VS Rollins for the Intercontinental Championship; 2) VS Roman for the Universal Championship; or 3) 1v1 with Braun Strowman. What does Ambrose choose? Brothers, or career? If Corbin thinks he’s going to dangle shiny carrots at Ambrose, he says option 4, Ambrose VS Corbin right here and now! Corbin laughs that off, but decides for Ambrose: it’s Strowman, right now! Can Ambrose hope to survive this monstrous surprise? We’ll find out after the break!
Dean Ambrose VS Braun Strowman!
Raw returns with the bell and Ambrose circles Strowman. He dropkicks a leg and has Strowman staggering. Ambrose kicks away but Strowman headbutts him down. Strowman circles Ambrose now, then runs in with a big boot. Strowman drags Ambrsoe up to whip him hard into buckles! Ambrose falls while fans are a loud mix for The Monster Among Men. Strowman drags Ambrose back up to wrench the neck. Ambrose endures so Strowman clubs away with forearms before wrenching harder on the neck. Fans rally up for Ambrose and Ambrose powers up. Strowman knees low and clubs Ambrose down, then stalks Ambrose to a corner. Strowman chops Ambrose then runs corner to corner for the big splash!
Fans boo and jeer Strowman while Ambrose barely moves on the mat. Strowman brings Ambrose up for another neck wrench, but fans continue to rally. Ambrose endures and pulls at Strowman’s beard. Strowman clubs Ambrose again, to continue the wrench. Ambrose pries one of the hands away as fans rally up. Ambrose has a leg but Strowman clubs him and puts him in a chinlock. Strowman and Ambrose are both red, so Strowman slams Ambrose down on the mat! Ambrose sits up, but Strowman tells him “The Shield is NEVER gonna help you!” Strowman SLAPS Ambrose with that haymaker, but Ambrose just gets mad. Ambrose slaps back, but gets tossed across the way! He gets to a corner but Strowman stands on him at the ropes! Strowman backs off at 4 to keep from being disqualified.
Strowman brings Ambrose up and then lifts him way up, but Ambrose counters with a guillotine! Ambrose is bringing Strowman down with the hold, but Strowman powers him up! Ambrose sunset flips but has to chop block instead. The attack is on as Ambrose has Strowman’s leg on ropes. Ambrose gives forearms to Strowman’s face, then runs side to side, only to run into a stiff arm from Strowman! The Monster jumps for a BIG stomp while we go to break.
Raw returns and Ambrose again rallies out of the neck wrench, but Strowman puts him in a corner. Strowman puts Ambrose on the top rope, but Ambrose kicks him away. Ambrose throws clubbing crossface punches, but Strowman drags him out o his shoulder. Ambrose slips off with an eye rake, then kicks low. He wants but is denied Dirty Deeds, only to send Strowman out of the ring! Strowman clears his vision and climbs back in, but misses in the corner! Ambrose gives him a forearm smash, then runs for a dropkick! Strowman staggers, Ambrose runs, but into the clubbing forearm! Fans boo more while Strowman huffs and puffs to catch his breath. Strowman drags Ambrose up again, reels him in, but Ambrose slips out, DIRTY DEEDS! Ambrose crawls to a corner, TWO!? How did Strowman survive that?
Strowman rolls out of the ring, but Ambrose builds speed to DIVE! Ambrose rams Strowman into the barriers but Ambrose is down, too. Ambrose gets up first to refresh the count then go after Strowman again. Strowman shoves Ambrose away and runs, but is sent into steel steps! The count climbs to 7 but Ambrose refreshes it again. Ambrose follows Strowman back into the ring, but runs into the MONSTER SLAM! Both men are down, but Ambrose rolls his way to the bottom rope. Strowman drags himself up and sees Ambrose on the outside. The referee keeps him back, so Strowman goes out the other end. Strowman starts stalking his way around the corner for the BIG shoulder check! Strowman tosses Ambrose into barriers, then into the ring. He returns at 6, glaring down at Ambrose. He drags Ambrose up, for another Monster Slam!
But Strowman isn’t done there. He wants a third, but here comes The Big Dog! Roman Reigns storms his way to ringside, and Strowman is ready to fight the WWE Universal Champion. SUPERMAN PUNCH!
Winner: Braun Strowman, by disqualification
Roman leaps for a second, but gets caught. He slips out of the slam, to boot Strowman away. Then Seth Rollins flies in outta nowhere with a knee! Rollins and Roman send Strowman out with double shoulders! Strowman backs down and the rest of his Pack comes out. But Baron Corbin also returns, and won’t let The Shield get away with this. Rollins faces Drew McIntyre tonight while Roman faces Dolph Ziggler NEXT! The Pack roars, ready to wage war tonight! Will there even be a Super Show Down Six Man Tag after tonight?
Ambrose gets iced up in the trainer’s room.
Rollins comes in to check on him. Ambrose says it’s fine, but then he blows up over things. Roman came out when he felt he had to! Yeah, he sure did, didn’t he? Ambrose could be IC Champion by now. What does he mean by that?
Roman Reigns VS Dolph Ziggler!
The Big Dog saved the Lunatic from being Monster Slammed into pieces, but now he has to deal with The Show-Off. But wait, Roman wants to put the title on the line?! The belt is raised, but Corbin comes out quickly again and says he runs the show. That title can’t just be put on the line. This match is non-title, as is Rollins’ match with Drew McIntyre. But mostly, the Universal Championship isn’t on the line until Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia. Now ring the bell.
The bell rings and Ziggler runs right at Roman! Ziggler may not win the title here but he might earn a shot for later. He grinds Roman’s face on ropes then bounces him off buckles. Ziggler gets put in a corner now and Roman gives him an uppercut! Roman grimaces as he stalks Ziggler at the ropes. He drags Ziggler up but Ziggler hotshots then dropkicks Roman down! Cover, TWO! Ziggler wraps Roman up in a sleeper hold with body scissors. Roman endures even as Ziggler grinds a forearm in. Fans duel while Roman works his way out. Ziggler shifts to a Bully Choke but Roman keeps going. Fans are thunderous as they duel, but Ziggler brings Roman right down to the mat. Ziggler drops an elbow, then covers, TWO!
Ziggler keeps on Roman by putting him in a corner and whipping. Roman reverses, but then misses and hits nothing but post! Roman is down on the outside while Ziggler gets his arms and legs moving. Ziggler fetches Roman, but Roman rocks him with a right. Ziggler kicks back, then leaps, satellite DDT to the floor! Both men are down and the count is at 7. Ziggler drags himself up and in, then goes out again. He puts Roman in, wanting to win with a pin. FAMOUSER! Cover, TWO! Roman survives while we go to break.
Raw returns again and Ziggler has the Bully Choke back on Roman. Roman powers his way up while fans duel. Roman punches his way out, then keeps throwing haymakers on Ziggler. Ziggler ducks and hops back on with the sleeper hold! Ziggler wraps on tight with the body scissors to become a backpack, and Roman fades again. Roman is gasping, and Ziggler even rakes the eyes and plugs the nose. But Roman gets a second win, and he powers his way back to buckles. Ziggler lets go, and Roman throws him all the way off. Roman catches his breath, but Ziggler runs in. Roman elbows Ziggler away, then rallies with lariats. He whips but Ziggler reverses, only for Roman to come back with the clothesline!
Fans duel again as Roman glares at Ziggler. He gives those close-range clotheslines in the corner! Roman gives all 10, then runs to boot Ziggler down! Fans continue to duel as Roman goes back to a corner. Roman looks at Ziggler as he locks and loads. He runs out, but Ziggler dodges to schoolboy! TWO, Superkick blocked! Fireman’s carry but Ziggler rakes eyes to then ZIGZAG! Cover, TWO!! Ziggler can’t believe how close he was, but he’s still not there yet. Ziggler fires himself up and tunes up the band. He aims at Roman, but Roman SUPERMAN PUNCHES! Cover, TWO! Roman is in disbelief now, but he still has something left. Fans duel again as he gets back to the corner. Roman fires up, lets out the howl, but Ziggler sunset flips up and over! TWO!! Ziggler headbutts Roman, Roman rebounds to SPEAR! Cover, Roman wins!
Winner: Roman Reigns, by pinfall
The Universal Champion rolls on towards Super Show Down, but that only evens the score between The Shield and The Pack for tonight. Will Rollins or McIntyre break the tie come later tonight?
Ronda Rousey w/ The Bella Twins VS Ruby Riott w/ The Riott Squad!
Before the Baddest Woman on the Planet teams with Nikki & Brie in Melbourne, she’ll take on Ruby directly for what The Squad did to her friend, Natalya. Will Ruby be arriving in Australia minus an arm? Or will Ruby find a way to #StartaRiott against the Rowdy Raw Women’s Champion?
Before the match, we see a selfie message from the Squad. Ronda and her friends are like the conventional beauty of a sunset or a red rose. The Squad are more like broken stained glass. But making Ronda and the Bellas break in Melbourne, that will be truly beautiful.
The bell rings and Ronda is ready. Ruby circles with the champ and is wary of those strikes. Fans are on Ronda’s side as she ties up with Ruby and powers her to ropes. Ronda reels Ruby in and throws her around with the judo throws! Ruby scurries away to regroup with The Squad. Ronda waits for Ruby, but Ruby takes her time with that 10 count. Ruby and Ronda circle again, and Ruby knees low. Ruby clubs Ronda down then gets a waistlock. Ronda turns it around and throws Ruby again, then pursues to keep Ruby from getting away. Ruby kicks Ronda then follows her out to pull her into the post and push her into barriers! Ronda grits her teeth while Ruby puts her back in the ring. Ruby covers, ONE, but Ruby keeps her cool.
Ruby drags Ronda up against the ropes and uses that braided ponytail against her. She also kicks Ronda, but Ronda hits back. Ruby clubs Ronda, then tosses her all the way out. The Bellas keep the Squad from trying anything sneaky, but Ruby comes back to fetch Ronda. Ruby bumps Ronda off the apron, then puts her in the ring. Cover, TWO, but Ruby goes after the arm. Ruby grinds her knees into Ronda while fans rally up. Ruby drops a knee, cover, TWO! Fans rally for Ronda while Ruby puts her in the ropes again. She pulls on the ponytail again, but stops at 4. Ruby fish hooks the mouth! She yanks Ronda around like that, but Ronda gets a ropebreak. Ruby lets go to rock Ronda with a right forearm! Cover, TWO!
Ronda gets to ropes but Ruby is right on her, choking her against the middle rope. Ruby backs off but the ref has to back the Squad off again. Sarah and Liv play innocent, but Ronda throws hands on Ruby. Ruby throws Ronda down by her hair, covers, TWO! Ruby keeps her cool while fans rally up for Ronda. She kicks Ronda while she’s down, then drags her up. Ruby headbutts Ronda, then throws her down with the STO! Cover, TWO! Now frustration boils up as Ruby shouts at the Bellas to shut up. Ruby scrapes her foot on Ronda’s face but fans rally for Ronda. Ruby wrenches, but Ronda grabs her for a back suplex toss!
Ronda hulks up and fires off! She gives swift uppercuts and a gut wrench lift into a slam! Then she kicks Sarah away for getting too close. Ruby rolls Ronda with a handful of tights!! TWO!! Ronda grabs Ruby again, for the ROWDY SLAM! But there’s no cover, time for the armbar! Ruby taps, Ronda wins!
Winner: Ronda Rousey, by submission
The Women’s Champion conquers Ruby here, and celebrates with Brie & Nikki in the ring. Will these three celebrate again in Melbourne? Or will all three Squad members be too crafty to conquer down under?
Bobby Roode w/ Chad Gable VS Konnor w/ Viktor!
The GLORIOUS One vows to get even with The Ascension on his #ReadyWillingAndGable partner’s behalf. Before the match, we hear Roode speak. He’s faced men as big as Konnor. And winning is difficult, but when it happens, it is… GLORIOUS! Konnor has a response, saying that Roode may be experienced, but he’ll fall just like his “student”. Gable better cover his eyes so he won’t see what Konnor does to his hero. Can Roode avoid being left in the Wasteland? Or will it be Konnor who becomes absolutely… GLORIOUS!?
The bell rings and Roode kicks away at Konnor’s leg. He goes after the leg but Konnor puts him in a corner. Roode dodges to chop and kick and chop again. Roode dropkicks the leg out, then goes for the DDT! Konnor powers his way to a corner and gets free of Roode. He runs but into Roode’s boots. Roode jumps up and over but runs into Konnor’s massive body attack! Konnor stalks Roode to a corner, then chokes him against the bottom rope. He stomps a mudhole into Roode, then backs off at 4. Roode is gasping but Konnor is back on him with more stomps. Konnor drags Roode out to then run and drop a big elbow on him. Cover, TWO! Konnor looms over Roode to then go after his face with raking fingers! The referee gets him to stop, then Konnor covers, TWO.
Konnor puts Roode in a chinlock to squeeze out the air. Gable coaches Roode up while fans build to a rally. Roode feeds off the energy and fights back with elbows. Konnor clubs Roode down, then gets feeling in his leg. Konnor runs but misses the elbow this time. Roode gets to a corner while Viktor coaches Konnor up. Roode dodges Konnor to drop toehold him into buckles! Konnor shakes the cobwebs out but Roode climbs up top. Roode leaps for a big lariat! Roode fires up with fans, and continues to kick the leg. He adds chops, then whips. Konnor reverses but Roode hits a forearm smash! Roode runs in for a corner clothesline, then whips. Konnor reverses but Roode boots him away. Roode hops up, GLORIOUS Blockbuster!
But Roode isn’t done there, as he winds it up… but Viktor clobbers Gable just because! Roode clobbers Viktor, but Konnor gets Roode! Konnor drags Roode up, gut wrench to Canadian backbreaker slam! Cover, Konnor wins!!
Winer: Konnor, by pinfall
The Ascension’s giant is on a winning streak!? How is this possible?! Will Roode & Gable fizzle out as a duo already?
Raw Presents: A Moment of Bliss.
The Goddess, Alexa Bliss, explains that everyone has a hero. Wonder Woman, Nelson Mandela, and Alexa. But even heroes have heroes. Alexa’s hero was Trish Stratus, who she faces at the first ever WWE Evolution PPV. However, there’s something else Alexa can’t believe it. She first met Trish when she was just seven years old, “shivering in the freezing cold” with her autograph book. Then there she was. Alexa gazed up at Trish’s wrinkled eyes and introducing herself. She asked for an autograph, but she’ll never forget what happened next. Trish burped and asked for $50 in return. Alexa said she was only seven, and her book was her most cherished possession. Trish ripped up the book, stepped on Alexa’s foot, and made her cry the entire night. When it comes to meeting your heroes, Stratusfaction is NOT Guaranteed.
The B-Team VS The Revival!
Bo Dallas & Curt Axel return! They may not be Raw Tag Team Champions anymore, but there’s always the climb back! Meanwhile, Dash & Dawson want another shot of their own after coming so close against McIntyre & Ziggler. Which team will #SayYeah to another chance at the titles?
Raw returns as Dash has Axel in a headlock. Axel powers out but Dawson tags in to bulldog Axel down. Cover, ONE, but Dawson keeps on Axel with elbow drops to the arm. Dawson drops a leg, too, then puts the arm in a keylock. Bo keeps the fans rallying while Axel endures. Axel stands up and pushes his way to his corner, but Dawson brings him back down. Dawson keeps the keylock on, but Axel endures. Fans continue to echo the chant while Dawson tags Dash. Axel arm-drags Dawson but Dash is right on him! Dash has a mounted armlock, and pulls back as hard as he can. Bo keeps the fans chanting, and Axel feeds off that energy. Axel throws forearms and haymakers, but Dash drop toeholds and knees Axel’s arm. Dash puts the keylock back on and Axel is back down on the mat.
Fans continue to chant “B Team! B Team! Go go go!” Axel stands up and spins around with Dash. Axel then throws Dash into buckles! Dash tags Dawson, Axel tags Bo! BO rallies on The Revival, then hits a body shot and boot! Bo runs him over with a back elbow, then runs Dash off. Dawson tries but fails to roll up, so he gives Bo a spinebuster! Cover, TWO! Tag to Dash and The Revival work together, Rocket Launcher Splash into knees! Axel takes out Dawson while BO rolls Dash up, B-Team wins!
Winners: The B-Team, Bo pinning
And they’re back on track! Bo and Axel can celebrate the Ax Man’s birthday with a win, but will they get back to the titles any time soon?
Not with the Authors of Pain attacking them from behind! They put Bo into the apron, then put both men in the ring. Drake Maverick coaches his monsters onward, and they give The B-Team a SUPER COLLIDER! Happy Birthday to Axel. Maybe they’ll have cake and candles in the trainer’s room…
Ambrose continues to recover backstage.
This time, Roman Reigns comes over to talk to him. Roman wants to know where Ambrose’s head is at, among other things. Is he alright? Ambrose finally looks at Roman and says it’s fine. They’re all good, really. Ambrose had Strowman but he could’ve gotten hurt, too. If Ambrose wasn’t such a nice guy, he might be even Universal Champion right now. Okay, now Ambrose is making implications. Will The Shield even be on the same page com Super Show Down?
Baron Corbin is impressed by the Authors of Pain.
It feels great running people over, huh? He enjoys their work, hopefully they enjoy their work. “Keep getting it done.” Maverick is also impressed and proud, will they make a serious run at the titles in the near future?
WWE and Raw again join the fight against Breast Cancer this October.
With a number as high as every one in eight women, we cannot sit idly by and let cancer do what it wants. Do what you can to help in this fight.
In the ring, WWE and Raw are honored to welcome these true champions in the fight against breast cancer. First, there is Dana Warrior, then Dr. Candice Grezlak, fundraiser Patty Bulger, and survivor Jennifer Teeler. Join the fight, save lives.
The Pack is restless backstage.
Strowman won, but by disqualification. Ziggler lost fair and square with no excuses. But Ziggler still feels it. Ambrose’s eyes are telling a different story. The Shield might be on their last legs. Strowman feels Ambrose is a great fit for the Pack. He may have gotten destroyed in that match, but Ambrose proved he’s “a tough bastard.” Ambrose is still a winner. McIntyre needs to be a winner against Rollins tonight. And there’s no room for a weak link, Dolph. McIntyre doesn’t say anything as he leaves with Strowman. Is there going to be a change in the pecking order come Super Show Down?
Seth Rollins VS Drew McIntyre!
The Architect is ready to #BurnItDown again in Seattle, but the Scottish Terminator is ready to snuff out the flames. Will Rollins or McIntyre break the tie between Shield and Pack in singles competition before we get the full Six Man Tag Team war in Melbourne?
The bell rings and Rollins circles with McIntyre. They tie up and McIntyre puts Rollins in a corner. McIntyre grinds a forearm in Rollins’ face while egging him on. Rollins comes out and ties up with McIntyre again. McIntyre puts Rollins back in a corner, then SLAPS Rollins across the face. Rollins puts McIntyre in the corner to unload furious hands. The ref backs Rollins off but Rollins wants to keep going. Rollins whips but McIntyre reverses. Rollins goes up and over then runs to dropkick McIntyre back. He clotheslines McIntyre out to then build speed and DIVE! Direct hit! McIntyre hits barriers and fans fire up for Rollins. Rollins bounces McIntyre off the apron and barriers before putting him in the ring. He aims and springboards but McIntyre gets under. McIntyre’s boot misses, but Rollins chops away.
Rollins whips but McIntyre reverses again. Rollins goes up again but McIntyre kicks him out of the air! Cover, TWO! McIntyre stalks Rollins to the rope to stomp him back in. McIntyre brings Rollins up for a mounted armlock. Fans rally for Rollins while he endures. Rollins powers his way up and out, only to be thrown down by his hair. McIntyre puts the armlock back on, and adds a chinbar. Fans rally up again and Rollins powers his way back up. McIntyre knees low then lifts Rollins, but Rollins slips out. Rollins baits McIntyre and sends him out, but McIntyre shoulders back in. McIntyre brings Rollins out to the apron, but Rollins prepares a powerbomb. McIntyre resist and pushes Rollins into the post! Rollins falls to the floor, and McIntyre prepares the steel steps.
McIntyre drags Rollins up the steps, lifts him, and drops him on the apron with a sidewalk slam! The Scottish Psycho has control while we go to break.
Raw returns and both men are down. Rollins crawls to a corner while McIntyre crawls away. Both men slowly stand while fans fire up. McIntyre swings but Rollins blocks and counters with haymakers and chops. Rollins whips but McIntyre reverses. Rollins dodges and slingblades! McIntyre runs into a boot, Rollins hops up for a blockbuster! Cover, TWO! Rollins grits his teeth while he gets back up. He runs but is put on the apron. He swing kicks McIntyre away, then springboards for a clothesline to the back of the head! Cover, TWO! Both men are down again but fans rally Rollins up. Corbin watches backstage as Rollins drags McIntyre up.
Rollins wants a bomb but McIntyre back drops him over. McIntyre blocks the boot to reel Rollins into the inverted position, but Rollins rolls through to roll McIntyre up! TWO, and McIntyre avoids the stomp! He chops Rollins back, then reels him in. Rollins slips through to Falcon Arrow! Cover, TWO! Both men are down again, but stirring. Rollins grits his teeth as he aims at McIntyre. McIntyre slowly moves, so Rollins goes to a corner. Rollins climbs, but McIntyre intercepts! McIntyre chops Rollins on the top rope, then climbs up to join him. McIntyre wants something crazy, but Rollins manages to sunset flip through, for a BUCKLE BOMB! Then a SUPERKICK! McIntyre is down while fans chant “Burn It Down!” But here comes Ziggler! Ziggler slides in but then slides out, this distracts Rollins enough for McIntyre to stand and CLAYMORE! Cover, McIntyre wins!
Winner: Drew McIntyre, by pinfall
The Show-Off has the assist, then he goes right after Rollins with stomps. McIntyre joins in, but here comes Roman! The Big Dog defends Rollins like he did Ambrose, but that’s 2v1! And now it’s 3v1 as Strowman appears! McIntyre clobbers Roman, and Ziggler adds on. Strowman arrives at ringside just as Rollins starts to stir. Here comes Ambrose!! The Lunatic has an ax handle and he uses it! He smacks Strowman while Roman takes a Zigzag, but then Ambrose runs the rest of The Pack off, too! Only to run into Strowman’s giant shoulder! Strowman puts Ambrose in the ring, and the Pack returns. Rollins hops on Strwoman, but Strowman scoops. Rollins slips out, but gets a SUPERKICK! Ambrose gets Ziggler but he gets mauled 3v1! Then, CLAYMORE ZIGZAG! The Pack won’t let up, they bring Roman up for a MONSTER SLAM!
The Monster, the Terminator and the Show-Off stand over the Big Dog, the Architect and the Lunatic here in Seattle, and copy the Shield fist bump! Will we see this all over again in Melbourne after the Super Show Down Six Man Tag?
Kevin Owens meets with Elias backstage.
Is this the stuff Elias’ stuff that he needs so he can perform? That’s right. His triangle of water bottles, his mints, his spinach, and… Wait, cashews? Elias doesn’t like cashews, he asked for almonds. Elias throws the nuts in the face of the staffer. Kevin fuels up before his match with Bobby Lashley, and that’s next!
Ladies and Gentlemen: Elias, and Kevin Owens.
The Drifter and the Prizefighter are in Seattle to a very mixed reaction. Elias plays his guitar and Kevin gets into the music. Kevin felt that in his bones. Allow Elias’ soul to shoot through you as you consider the question, “Who Wants to Walk With Elias?!” Kevin raises his hand. It’s almost time. The only man who truly walks with Elias is his kindred spirit, Kevin Owens. Kevin thanks Elias, and will gladly walk with Elias, especially in Melbourne to take on Bobby Lashley and John Cena. This duo makes sense, because they’re very similar. They’re both great guys! But what doesn’t make sense: Lashley & Cena. Elias agrees. It’s like a basketball team in Seattle. Fans definitely boo that. It sounds like Elias struck a nerve.
Eilas and Kevin wait for the fans to stop, which is quite a long time. But sports aren’t really Kevin’s thing. Kevin, speak up, the fans are being rude. Well what else isn’t Kevin’s thing: Cena. Cena has really been living up to his catchphrase: You Can’t See Me. Because we haven’t! He hasn’t been here. Elias needs his mic turned up so he can be heard. Yes, Cena, that was Wrestlemania time when Cena ruined his moment. Cena ruins things, just like Seattle does. It’s why their team left! But Cena won’t ruin Super Show Down for Kevin & Elias. Because Kevin & Elias are great guys and they’re smart guys. They’ve figured something out. They know why Cena gets to team with Lashley. Elias demands the lights stay down low, we don’t need to see these people right now.
But back onto Cena, he has had many great matches, he’s #BigMatchJohn. Kevin wants them to face it, Cena always has big matches now. Every chance Cena shows up is special. Because Cena’s ego is as big as Seattle’s ego, and Cena won’t allow himself to perform unless it’s a certain stage. Cena needs to be in the ring with big men, just like Elias needs Seattle to shut up! Cena stays relevant with big matches, such as against Elias. He needs to feel like the best, but you have to beat the best. When it comes to Raw, Elias & Kevin are the absolute best! That’s why Lashley & Cena have NO CHANCE in Australia! Elias is so talented, people can’t get enough of him. And on Saturday, Kevin would love to give an encore performance when he powerbombs Cena on an apron one more time.
But finally, someone else comes out! The Manager of the Hour, Lio Rush, leads the way. He sees Kevin and Elias, and scolds them, “tsk tsk tsk.” Cena is electric, even Lio knows that. Lio tells Elias & Kevin that they’re justified in recognizing just how important this Saturday will be. The greatest of all time will be there! Lio wants Kevin to know now, though, that he better not overlook this man tonight. Kevin’s as foolish as Lio has made him look lately. So stop the chit chat and yip yap and prepare for the Rocky Mountain Machine, who is ready to battle right here in Seattle! Give it up for Bobby Lashley!
Bobby Lashley VS Kevin Owens!
While he joins none other than JOHN CENA at Super Show Down, the Dominator looks to get his on the Prizefighter days before then. However, Kevin still has a blank check from Baron Corbin to use on any of his opponents, will he be cashing that in here tonight?
Raw returns and the two circle. They tie up and Lashley throws Kevin down. Kevin slides out to regroup with Elias. He comes back and circles with Lashley again. Kevin gets the waistlock but Lashley the standing switch and then slam. Lashley goes back in for another waistlock slam! Lashley wants another waistlock but Kevin gets the ropes. Kevin then sucker kicks and puts on the headlock. He gets the takedown, but Lashley rolls. Kevin rolls it back quickly, then keeps on the grind. Lashley stands up and powers out, but Kevin runs him over with a shoulder. Kevin runs but Lashley runs him over in return. Kevin bails out to again regroup with Elias. Elias wants Lashley to stay back, but Lashley comes out. Kevin goes back in the ring but then runs into Lashley’s swinging neckbreaker. Kevin scurries to a corner but Lashley is on him.
Lashley bumps Kevin off buckles then throws haymakers and stomps. Lashley bumps Kevin off more buckles and Lio lies what he sees from his client. Another buckle bump for Kevin and fans want more. Lashley goes for the full four but Kevin works to turn it around. However, Lashley blocks that and bumps Kevin off for the set! Lashley throws forearms but Kevn throws forearms back. They brawl at the ropes, but the ref backs Lashley off. Lashley comes back and whips but Kevin kicks him away. Kevin runs but into the powerslam! Lashley brings Kevin up in the fireman’s carry but Kevin fights out. Kevin dodges Lashley and sends him into the post. Kevin drags Lashley out to put him into another post! The Prizefighter trash talks Lio and Seattle while we go to break.
Raw returns and Elias taunts Lashley while he’s down on the outside. Kevin refreshes the count to throw Lashley’s arm into barriers and then into the steel steps. He puts Lashley in the ring, then drops a back senton. Cover, TWO, and Lio coaches up Lashley again. Kevin puts Lashley’s bad arm in a keylock but fans rally up. Lashley feeds off the energy and stands back up, only for Kevin to bring him back down. Kevin taunts Lio while Lio coaches Lashley. Lashley sits up even as Kevin puts his weight on him. Fans continue to rally and Lashley powers his way all the way up to his feet. Lashley fights back with haymakers, but Kevin hits back with his own. Kevin runs but Lashley shows off his agility to then clothesline Kevin down!
Lashley rallies with a kick, a clubbing and a clothesline! Lashley runs into the corner but gets a boot. Kevin runs but into the complete shot! Lashley runs in for the big corner clothesline, then corner to corner for the shoulder tackle! Lashley brings Kevin out and fans fire up for the suplex. But that bad arm can’t do it. Kevin kicks the arm, but then runs into the spinebuster! Elias goes after Lio! Lio avoids him, slips around and then away but still gets caught into a full nelson! Elias thrashes Lio, Lashley gets distracted, Kevin rolls him up! Kevin wins!!
Winner: Kevin Owens, by pinfall
But Lashley goes after Elias! And after Kevin! But that’s 2v1, so Elias & Kevin get the better of him. Seattle boos as Elias & Kevin stomp away. John Cena is nowhere to be seen, but Lio is still here! Lio leaps in, but into double ax handles! Kevin and Elias laugh at little Lio, but they’re not done with Lashley. Elias feeds Lashley to the Pop-Up Powerbomb! The Drifter & The Prizefighter hug it out, but will it be so easy when the 16-time world champion returns?
Bayley w/ Finn Balor VS Alicia Fox w/ Jinder Mahal & Sunil Singh!
While everyone else prepares for Super Show Down, Team B’n’B prepares for tomorrow night’s Mixed Match Challenge! The Extraordinary Man got a win over the Modern Day Maharaja last week, can the Huggable One get a win over the crazy Fox this week? Or will “Captain” Alicia turn things around and be the catalyst for a win in the MMC?
The bell rings and Alicia puts Bayley in the corner. Alicia backs off to Shanti, but Bayley turns around to throw hands on Alicia! Alicia pushes Bayley away then hotshots Bayley. She then gives Bayley a running facebuster, covers, TWO! She keeps on Bayley with a chinlock, but Finn coaches Bayley up. Bayley endures and powers her way up, but Alicia shifts to a Nothern Lights! Bayley resists and elbows her way out, then gets to a corner. Alicia walks over and yanks Bayley up, but Bayley rocks her with an elbow. Bayley hops up for a flying forearm, then covers, TWO! Alicia boots Bayley right down! Alicia gets the Northern Lights, with the bridge, TWO! Crazy Foxy breathes and says “Shanti” before putting Bayley back in the chinlock.
Alicia thrashes Bayley around while Finn rallies fans. Bayley feeds off the energy and stands up, but Alicia clubs her again. Alicia whips Bayley hard into buckles, then again. She runs in but Bayley flapjacks her onto buckles! Bayley drags her way to the other corner as fans fire up. Bayley boots Alicia away to then hit a lariat! The Huggable One rallies now as she puts Alicia on the apron for the hotshot! Alicia gets to a corner and Bayley runs in. Alicia goes up and over to sunset flip, but Bayley rolls through to dropkick Alicia! Just ilke Finn! Finn approves and Bayley gives a Too Sweet. Jinder swipes as Bayley runs, so Bayley wrecks him with a dropkick. Finn adds the Slingblade! Bayley blocks Alicia’s boot to hit Bayley2Belly! Cover, Bayley wins!
Winner: Bayley, by pinfall
One half of B’n’B wins tonight, can they get the complete sweep with an MMC victory? Or will #Mahalicia be able to Shanti and shut Bayley & Balor down?
Shawn Michaels is here!
The Heartbreak Kid returns to give one last message to everyone before Super Show Down. He knows HHH and The Undertaker will face off #OneLastTime, and he couldn’t just stay at home. He wanted to be in Melbourne in the front row as a simple fan. But then The Undertaker made things personal between them. Taker asked HBK who he stood with for this fight, and while HBK had all the respect in the world for the Dead Man, he picked his best friend in HHH! And then for some reason or another, that upset Taker. “But guess what?” Taker made it personal, so now it is. Taker will have Kane, but HBK will be the “brother” to HHH. Kane needs to understand this: if you or anyone tries to rush the ring, then with God as HBK’s witness, he’ll give some Sweet Chin Music to the Devil’s Favorite Demon!
But speaking off, here comes KANE!! But not from the ramp, he’s right behind HBK! HBK realizes it too late and gets the uppercut! And here comes Taker!! Taker appears in the ring! The Brothers of Destruction loom over HBK and Seattle is losing its mind. Taker stands over HBK as he slowly sits up. Taker slashes the throat, and then lifts HBK up, but here comes HHH! The COO strips off the suit and The Game throws hands with Taker! Kane is lurking, and he pulls HHH off. HHH throws hands, but Kane grabs him, HBK hits Kane, but he gets caught. The Brothers double Choke Slam DX!! Fans are losing their minds, but things aren’t done yet. HHH flops to the ropes, and Taker brings him up, for a TOMBSTONE! The Dead Man still has it, is this a sign of what’s to come at Super Show Down?
What a great surprise: Raw made a really fun go-home episode! Now obviously the story of The Shield VS The Pack dominated the night, but they actually did some good things with it. I liked that Ambrose was being cryptic about how he felt having The Shield back. They’re learning how to toy with us: we expect Ambrose to turn but they know we know that so they’re hinting it while still keeping Ambrose just loyal enough to the team. Each match we got from The Shield VS The Pack in 1v1 action was great, especially Rollins VS McIntyre. If Raw was just those two hours, as focused on one story as it was, it would’ve actually had a solid finish for the night. But if The Pack stands tall tonight, that has to mean The Shield stands tall at Super Show Down.
The only confusing thing from The Shield VS Pack story tonight was Corbin being upset that Roman wanted to defend his title. That’s points for Roman for truly being a fighting champ, wanting to make every match a title match. Obviously Corbin would want to keep the title on Roman just so Lesnar and Strowman go after the guy the Authority wants to destroy in kayfabe, but why didn’t he say Rollins VS McIntyre was a title match? Since McIntyre won, he’d be a dual champion now. Unless this feeds into something Corbin is planning with AoP & Maverick.
Speaking of, The Authors of Pain blindsiding The B-Team was pretty great for Akam & Rezar. They clearly have Corbin’s approval, so I wonder if Corbin would back them against even The Pack’s McIntyre & Ziggler past Super Show Down. It’s also good to see Drake Maverick is no longer cosplaying as the third Author, he just never looked right in the same gear. A manager should dress as a manager, not a fan, so it’s good that he was in a jacket and jeans. Lio Rush was also in style, so clearly the Manager of the Hour gets it. Of course, Lio and Lashley didn’t so well this time around, Kevin & Elias really got the better of them tonight. Kevin & Elias really got the better of Seattle, too, those Seattle Sonics fans were pissed.
Rousey VS Riott was pretty good, Ruby was booked a bit stronger than I expected. Of course, I suppose Ronda would get boring pretty quickly if she just completely wrecked everyone every time. Ronda needs to be challenged in terms of match difficulty if we’re to stay behind her as champion, or else she really will run the risk of being a Brock Lesnar or Roman Reigns type. Ronda finds the way to win, but anything can happen to help The Squad win at Super Show Down. Of course, it’s already well known that Nikki Bella faces Ronda at WWE Evolution, so maybe something happens between Nikki and Ronda during their match to cause the team to fall apart?
Hooray for Konnor racking up wins at the expense of Roode & Gable. That story of GLORIOUSLY awkward teaming is still odd and probably doomed to bring a break-up, but at least Konnor’s getting something. Hooray for Bayley winning to put B’n’B up over Mahalicia, and also for being the brand integration for Mixed Match Challenge. Hopefully there’s none of this 50-50 booking, I don’t see why the fan favorite team now has to lose their MMC debut just to keep Mahalicia from going 0-2 already. Then for the close, HBK obviously wants to put HHH over before SSD, but it was great to see BOTH Brothers of Destruction appear as a nice surprise, and then those two stand tall for old time’s sake. They should just make #OneLastTime a tag team match and get this HBK return started now.
My Score: 8.5/10
(NOAH) WEEKLY NEWSLETTER VOL.44 ~ 21ST JULY 2019
The Global Junior League is wrapping up, and Marine Day is celebrated by all! Hisame gives the overview on the NOAH course of action!
The Global Junior League is wrapping up, and Marine Day is celebrated by all! Hisame gives the overview on the NOAH course of action!
CURRENT TOUR RECAP
NOAH started the long trek to the finals (and the GHC Heavyweight Tag match championship) at Korakuen Hall on 15th July on Japan’s “Marine Day” National Holiday. By the 16th they had moved up to Japan’s North to the Shin Yuri Twenty-One Hall, with the dreaded “Demon Staircase from Hell”. 19th July in Morioka, 20th in Akita and the 21st in Aomori.
Kenoh debuted his new ring wear (its all red) and Kongoh got their first win over The Sugiura Army (who all came out wearing the “Company Dog T-shirts”)
Kenoh has vowed to enter the N-1, win it, win the GHC Heavyweight at Sumo Hall, and then return to the provinces with the belt.
Naomichi Marufuji also debuted new ring wear. He said he changed it from red as red was Kongoh’s colors, and he has gone with a black and metallic silver. Black and silver are LIDET’S colors, but Kenoh seems not to have picked up on that yet.
RATELS continued with their periodic squabble (which happens in leagues, and when one of them has a belt which another one challenges for) in a match that one fan termed “speed vs power” with Tadasuke taking on YO-HEY, and defeating him within ten minutes. Elsewhere for RATELS that evening, Daisuke Harada was bloodied by Yoshinari Ogawa, who in turn was bloodied by Harada when he threw him into a table. As YO-HEY said about the match (which he watched on the monitor), that Harada is known for bleeding, but for Ogawa, its very rare.
There was blood everywhere by the end of the match, all over the mat, the mats outside (in pools), and senior Referee Nishinaga’s shirt was smeared with it. Yoshinari Ogawa won with a sneak roll up (see “Rat Boy” in dictionary), and Harada threw one of his famous tantrums and had to be pulled off Ogawa. Ogawa said afterwards that if you think what he did to Harada was bad then he was going to do worse to YO-HEY (who is “not on Harada’s level”). YO-HEY gave a nonsensical confused and rambling promo (please DO NOT GET ME STARTED on it) about hitting Ogawa’s nose on the right side. However, in the event of things, neither bled and it was YO-HEY who took the victory.
The bloodshed resolved nothing between Harada & Ogawa as on the 16th when Harada came out to second RATELS, friction once again rose between them, with a fight breaking out at the end of the match as Harada got into the ring to attack Ogawa.
In the main event at Korakuen when AXIZ clashed with the challengers to their GHC Heavyweight tag titles, Kaito Kiyomiya aimed a missile dropkick to Go Shiozaki’s knee (despite promising that he wouldn’t as he felt that a champion should be “emphatic” at times). Also in the match sparks flew between Chris Ridgeway and Naomichi Marufuji, who had a kick\chop war. After the match they both made the “single match” signal to each other, which is something that fans very much want to see.
After the match (and Go Shiozaki tapping out to Taniguchi), NOAH announced that Shiozaki would be missing time due to a shoulder dislocation. During this time, which was a time of worry for fans and Nakajima, Nakajima came out holding both the tag belts and to AXIZ theme music. Taniguchi made him tap out on the 16th to his modified camel clutch.
Kaito Kiyomiya has now turned 23 (17th July) and fans have started detecting a change of vibe him in, he seemingly has gone from the nice young (slightly naive) boy of 22, to more steely and less sympathetic person. This was seen when talking about Shiozaki’s injury he said something to the effect of, “yeah, we all get injured, and while I sympathize, we are trying to have a title match here”, and in the title match he attacked Shiozaki’s damaged neck and shoulder. In Morioka, he was seen to have slight smirk on his lips (as opposed to his usual worried expression) when he held the belt up to Kenoh at the end of the main event, and Kenoh stalked off.
Go Shiozaki returned to action on the 20th July. He doesn’t seem to have had any further problems, and he says he is fine, but fans think that he is probably a lot worse than he is making it out to be.
The afternoon at Korakuen belonged to the juniors with HAYATA vs Kotaro Suzuki putting on a stellar match, with HAYATA wearing Kotaro Suzuki down by letting him wear himself out. HAYATA wouldn’t quit, he took everything that Suzuki threw at him, and likewise with Suzuki taking everything that HAYATA threw at him. The audience were firmly on the side of HAYATA (as opposed to NOAH’s first born son), and just as Suzuki hit the Tiger Driver, the time ran out.
Hajime Ohara, it must be said, was not in a good way during the closing stages of Global Junior League as the problem with his neck and shoulder flared up again (it had plagued him during Global Tag League 2018 too), so while fans wanted to see him win, it was probably better that he didn’t, especially as he is responsible pretty much for the planning of NOAH’s Kawasaki event. During the match on the 16th, the referee was concerned and asked him if he was fit to continue.
The semi final night of Global Junior League 2019 and the GHC Heavyweight title match came on the 21st July 2019 in the Mutsu Grand Hotel in Aomori. It is a small venue, a hotel, which NOAH created a “big match” atmosphere at.
Takashi Sugiura & NOSAWA Rongai teamed up to take on Minoru Tanaka & Kinya Okada. After the match, which Sugiura naturally won, he said that he wanted Kinya Okada to enter The Sugiura Army. Kinya Okada did (and how could he refuse after being commanded by Takashi Sugiura), and he will have his first match as one of them on the 27th July at Kawasaki when they fight Kongoh. His joining The Sugiura Army is a good move as not only does it mean that he has the chance to be mentored by Takashi Sugiura, it also brings him into conflict with Yoshiki Inamura, who is in Kongoh, and calls him “my rival”.
Global Junior League 2019 came down to HAYATA vs Tadasuke, following their wins over Hajime Ohara & Kotaro Suzuki (HAYATA, who was seconded by YO-HEY) and Tadasuke (who defeated Daisuke Harada earlier in the evening). When they met in the ring later, Tadasuke gave HAYATA the finger.
Daisuke Harada commented, “RATEL’S showdown in the final, I have nothing but jealousy.”
AXIZ defended the GHC Heavyweight tag titles successfully against Kaito Kiyomiya & Shuhei Taniguchi, with Go Shiozaki getting the win with the lariat on Shuhei Taniguchi. They were challenged for the titles by The Return of The Dark Agents (Akitoshi Saito & Masao Inoue).
Title match will take place at NOAH’s anniversary show on the 4th August.
All Japan announced this week that the memorial for Atsushi Aoki will take place on the 11th August at Korakuen Hall. NOAH wrestlers have been announced to be participating in the event (although he was an All Japan wrestler, Aoki was NOAH born) with Naomichi Marufuji, Takashi Sugiura, Shuhei Taniguchi and Hitoshi Kumano in attendance.
The main event will see Naomichi Marufuji team with Kento Miyahara and Yuma Aoyogi against Shuji Ishikawa, Shuhei Taniguchi and Suwama. Suwama has wanted a singles match with Marufuji since the Tokyo Sports Award in January, and says that he doesn’t care about the other opponents, he wants Marufuji.
In the semi, Jun Akiyama will tag with Takashi Sugiura against Naoya Nomura and Hitoshu Kumano.
- GHC Heavyweight Champion: Kaito Kiyomiya
- GHC Junior Champion: Minoru Tanaka
- GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: AXIZ (Go Shiozaki & Katsuhiko Nakajima)
- GHC Junior Tag Champions: Stinger (Kotaro Suzuki & Yoshinari Ogawa)
~ NOAH have released a Sugiura Army “Company Dog” towel, which features both of Takashi Sugiura’s dogs with his little toy poodle at one end and his beloved Shiba Inu at the other, both barking “Yip! Yip!”
~ HAYATA gave Kotaro Suzuki a slight black eye
~ Kenoh has said that HE will enter the N-1, and if LIDET don’t let him, he will go ahead and do it anyway.
~ Yoshiki Inamura turned on Junta Miyawaki when Miyawaki came in to try and help him after the match in Morioka
~ Minoru Tanaka stole Rocky Kawamura’s apples and ate one in the ring, and posted that the other one was for his lunch. When asked how they were by Rocky, he said they were tasty.
~ Kenoh’s latest bout of paranoia is to claim that LIDET turned the microphone down on him during a promo.
~ Naomichi Marufuji scooped up the white and black feathers left in the ring from Kaito Kiyomiya and AXIZ’S jackets, and putting them in the palm of his hand, blew them into the crowd.
~ Mohammed Yone and Atsushi Kotoge did the Disco Fever vs Revolutionary Pose stand off. This hasn’t happened for a while.
~ RATELS went on a wander while in Akita, and came across a fenced off area because Bears were in the forest. YO-HEY joked that it was Hitoshi Kumano (who’s surname means “Bear”, and also incorporates bears into his persona\merchandise), doing a private autograph session. In one picture, in the background, HAYATA had his back to the camera while he stood by some bushes…
~ Minoru Suzuki vs Naomichi Marufuji will be their first match since the Suzuki Gun invasion of NOAH in summer 2016, although the match at TAKAYAMANIA 2 when this takes place, will not be a singles match.
~ Kaito Kiyomiya turned 23 on the 17th July
~ “The Tadasuke Women” were seen again in force at the Shin-Yuri Twenty One Hall. These middle aged to elderly women I believe are family and friends of Mohammed Yone, but they were given the name “The Tadasuke Women” after he played up to them last year. Minoru Tanaka, who sprained his ankle during the match, said that he had been distracted by them, hence the reason for his injury. Tadasuke behaved himself this year.
~ Masao Inoue suffered the usual sneak videos from Naomichi Marufuji on NOAH’s long bus journey (they have a twelve hour trip on the 22nd back to Tokyo), and then Marufuji bought out his new toy, “FaceApp” and made him into a woman (who looked a little like Betty Boop) and an old man. Marufuji also made himself into an old man, and then into woman. A photograph of himself and Takashi Sugiura as old grey men (looking like they where hosts of a daytime or direct to video art series) made Sugiura remark that they should challenge for the tag titles.
~ Referee Ben, who was kneeling at ringside, was knocked over by a dueling Chris Ridgeway and Tadasuke
NOAH’s big Kawasaki Kultz event (and the GHC Heavyweight title, plus the final night of Global Junior League 2019) will air on the 2nd August on G+ at 8.30PM JST
NOAH will be broadcast live on Sunday 4th August at 11.30am JST on G+
PICTURE CREDITS: Noah.co.jp, Daisuke Harada, Naomichi Marufuji, Battle Sports
Mitchell’s NJPW AXS TV Results: G1 Climax 29, Part 3!
The G1 rages on in the summer heat!
AXS TV brings us NJPW G1 Climax 29, Night 7!
A week into the annual summer blockbuster, and the standings are coming into focus. Who in A Block gets some much needed momentum? And who SPOILS it for the rest of them?
Coverage of the G1 Climax 29 will be as broadcast by AXS TV.
Gifs to come courtesy of https://frentique.tumblr.com/
- Bad Luck Fale VS Zack Sabre Jr; Zack Sabre Jr wins.
- Lance Archer VS Hiroshi Tanahashi; Tanahashi wins.
- EVIL VS KENTA; KENTA wins.
- Kota Ibushi VS SANADA; Ibushi wins.
- Kazuchika Okada VS Will Ospreay; Okada wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
NJPW and AXS set the scene for this critical night of action!
The A Block enters its fourth round, and only newcomer Kenta and the IWGP Heavyweight Champion himself, Kazuchika Okada, have perfect scores! But the Aerial Assassin is still in the running. The IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion lost to the Killer Elite, Lance Archer, and the Golden Star, Kota Ibushi, but there is still time for a comeback! However, he’ll have to do it against the Rainmaker! Okada has had Ospreay’s number every time, but the clash of champions may prove who is truly the BEST in NJPW!
But then there are the highly anticipated match-ups of the fastest rising stars! Ibushi was a finalist of G1 Climax 28 while the Cold Skull was a New Japan Cup 2019 finalist! Each has come close to the title, but their standings are at a make-or-break point with tonight! Sanada got the best of Ibushi last time, but that doesn’t mean it’s over for the former IWGP Intercontinental Champion. With only so much time left, who survives and who is out of the running as the G1 reaches its climax?!
Bad Luck Fale w/ Jado & Chase Owens VS Zack Sabre Jr!
But even before all of that, the Bullet Club’s Rogue General enters #ZackSabreTime! Will bad luck fall on the Submission Master? Or will Fale #JustTapOut?
The bell rings and ZSJ jumps right at Fale! He has a guillotine and body scissors but his weight is not enough to drag Fale all the way down. Fale endures and powers out, but ZSJ slips around to a sleeper! ZSJ squeezes tight and uses his own shoulder as a way to keep the lock. But Fale just powers out and throws him down! Fale catches his breath but ZSJ dodges to wheelbarrow to a kneebar! But again, ZSJ is just not enough weight to make Fale fall. Fale pries at the leg scissors, and drags ZSJ over as he heads for ropes. ZSJ bends and twists the leg but the ropebreak makes him let go. After the ref counts to 4, that is.
ZSJ unties himself and avoids Fale’s angry stomp. He wrenches the arm and again, but Fale blocks the whip. Fale whips ZSJ to a corner hard, then runs in to squash him! ZSJ flops over and Fale drops an elbow. Into an armbar! ZSJ has Fale down but Fale has a tight grip. Fale shifts his weight, and deadlifts ZSJ up! ZSJ lets Fale go, but gets run over with a clothesline! Fale goes to the writhing ZSJ and brings him in for a Canadian rack. ZSJ fights out of Bad Luck Fall to get the sleeper, to the Iron Octopus! Fale endures as ZSJ twists the arm and pulls on fingers! ZSJ twists that arm all sorts of ways, but Fale backs into a ropebreak. And Jado SMACKS ZSJ with his kendo stick! Fale “falls” into the ref, so that he doesn’t see ZSJ get mugged by Chase Owens!
The Crown Jewel is becoming an ace in the hole as he gets away with beating down ZSJ. Sadly, Taka Michinoku can’t watch ZSJ’s back with his own injury keeping him out. Fale fetches ZSJ to then whip him into railing. Fale throws body shots as he brings ZSJ out into the crowd. Chase keeps the ref back as Fale dumps ZSJ onto chairs. Fans back out of the way as Fale throws things onto ZSJ. Fale brings ZSJ deeper into the crowd to throw him into more chairs. They go into the bleachers! Fale shoves the ref away and Chase helps back people off. Fale drags ZSJ up for the crucifix, but ZSJ escapes! ZSJ standing switches with Chase, Fale runs in, Fale only gets Chase! Fale grabs ZSJ for the Grenade! But ZSJ traps him in a hanging armbar!
The ring count finally begins as ZSJ manages to drag Fale down! Fale has to work with ZSJ’s dead weight, but the count is past 10! ZSJ lets go at 14 to scramble to the ring! He gets in at 17, Fale is still outside! The count hits 20!! ZSJ gets his first win of the tournament!!
Winner: Zack Sabre Jr, by count-out; earns 2 points
The Undisputed British Heavyweight Champion wins by the seat of his pants, but a win is a win for the G1! Will ZSJ be able to use this for a comeback? Or is even this count-out victory just not in time?
Lance Archer VS Hiroshi Tanahashi!
#EverybodyDies, but The Ace won’t do so without a fight! Tanahashi wants to make this his strongest comeback yet, but he’s up against another strong and returning heavyweight. Will Tanahashi survive the Killer Elite? Or will it be #GoAce as A Block keeps rocking?
Just like on night one, and every night, Archer DECKS Young Lions on his way out to the ring! It seems nothing can put out the raging fire inside of him. But then Tanahashi makes his entrance, and this fight begins as he dropkicks Archer’s legs before the bell! The bell does ring as Tanahashi keeps going at those legs with dropkicks and chop blocks! Archer bails out while Tanahashi takes off his jacket. Tanahashi then slingshots and topples Archer over! Tanahashi kicks Archer but Archer shoves him back. Archer reverses a whip but then Tanahashi reverses it back to send Archer into railing! Tanahashi catches his breath before pursuing Archer around the corner. Archer choke slams Tanahashi onto the apron!
Tanahashi crumbles to the floor while Archer grits his teeth. Archer shouts at the fans cheering for Tanahashi to shut up, then he glares as he goes back to the ring. Tanahashi anchors Archer’s feet on the apron! Archer kicks him away with ease, then apron CANNONBALLS to bowl Tanahashi over! Fans have to cheer for that, but then he tells them to shut up anyway. Archer drags Tanahashi up to ram him into the railing, then into the apron. Archer CHOPS Tanahashi while the count climbs. He puts Tanahashi in at 15 to finish this in the ring. Fans rally while Archer grinds his knee into Tanahashi’s face. Archer lets up as the ref counts, and fans actually start to duel!
Tanahashi throws forearms but they do nothing. Archer CLUBS Tanahashi ones, but then Tanahashi is up again. So Archer CHOPS Tanahashi off his feet! But Tanahashi is back again! He kicks the leg then whips, but Archer reverses for a scrapbuster! Cover, TWO! Archer is furious with the ref and scares him out of the ring. The referee reprimands Archer for a bad attitude, but then Archer intimidates Young Lions. Fans duel as Archer drags Tanahashi up. He reels Tanahashi in for a BIG lariat! He stands on Tanahashi for a cover, TWO! Archer is on Tanahashi with an armlock and chinbar. Fans duel as Tanahashi endures.
Tanahashi fights his way up but Archer throws him down by his hair. Archer tells Tanahashi, “This is MY house now! I’m the Ace now!” He then grabs the legs to tie them up, and the Texan wants to give Tanahashi a Texas Cloverleaf! But Tanahashi resists and fights free! Tanahashi blocks the boot to spin Archer, but he can’t get Archer up for a German Suplex. Archer elbows free and then runs at Tanahashi, big back elbow and again. He gets a third, then goes again, but gets a Slingblade! Both men are down and the fans are thunderous! Tanahashi and Archer slowly stir, but Tanahashi gets up to get the legs, for a grounded dragon screw! And then he laces them up, for the Cloverleaf! Archer resists, grabs some of Tanahashi’s hair, but then Tanahashi stops him with another dragon screw!
Fans continue to duel as Tanahashi is up first. Tanahashi runs but into a choke grip! He breaks free to palm strike! Tanahashi runs again, but Archer goes sideways to POUNCE! Archer has a wild look in his eyes as he looms over Tanahashi. He drags Tanahashi up into a corner, then to the top rope. Tanahashi fights back and has an arm, only for Archer to yank him down with it. Archer won’t let Tanahashi steal something from him. Archer has Tanahashi’s arm now, and climbs up the corner. Fans cheer as Archer goes Old School! And then extends it to another corner, for the ax handle, into TWIST ‘N’ SHOUT! Tanahashi fires up, runs and Slingblades again! Cover, TWO! But Tanahshi doesn’t slow down, he goes up top! High Fly Flow-body! But is deflected into a CHOKE SLAM! Cover, TWO!!
Archer doesn’t care Tanahashi survived, he’ll just add on! Twisting Vader SPLASH! Cover, TWO!! But Archer still has that wild look in his eyes. He prepares the claw, drags Tanahashi up, but the #EBD is blocked! Tanahashi tries his hardest to hold off that claw, but he and Archer go back and forth! The claw clamps on!! Archer powers Tanahashi back to the ropes, but holds on until the ref pulls him off! Archer drags Tanahashi back up and up top again to CHOP! Fans reach a fever pitch as they duel. Archer has Tanahashi’s legs and drags him off top for an Electric Chair. VICTORY ROLL! Tanahashi wins!!
Winner: Hiroshi Tanahashi, by pinfall; earns 2 points
The Ace had something up his sleeve and he pulls this win out of nowhere! Archer is furious because he was just moments away! And he takes it out on the ref with a toss! Is Tanahashi going to make it back to the top? Is Archer’s next opponent going to pay for what Tanahashi did?
EVIL VS KENTA!
The King of Darkness wants to prove #EverythingIsEvil, but he has to end the winstreak of the man who wants to #Takeover NJPW! Will Evil spoil Kenta’s perfect debut run? Or does the “return to the original Kenta” only end with the G1 Climax 29 Finals?
The bell rings and the two stare down while fans cheer already. Evil and Kenta approach, and then Kenta runs into Evil’s kick. Evil headlocks and holds on as Kenta tries to power out. Kenta tries again but Evil holds on tight. Evil brings Kenta down to the mat but Kenta powers up and fights back. Kenta finally powers out but Evil runs him over with a shoulder! But Kenta is up quick to boot and whip Evil back. Kenta boots Evil again, but Evil’s right up! The two grind foreheads, but Evil pushes Kenta to the ropes. Kenta turns that around and lets up, but with a cold stare. Kenta rubs Evil’s eye shadow! He dare smudges the King of Darkness’ warpaint!? Evil grabs Kenta by the face, but Kenta kicks free and snapmares him down for a SWIFT kick!
Kenta circles Evil while he writhes. He positions Evil and jumps, only to scuff Evil’s face. Fans are divided by Kenta’s attitude as he smirks at Evil. Evil sits up but Kenta kicks him. Evil shakes his head, that doesn’t seem enough. So Kenta kicks him harder! Still not enough, and then Evil catches the kick, to give to Red Shoes, to mule kick Kenta down! Fans cheer as Evil throws Kenta out and follows after. Evil whips Kenta to railing, and then follows him around the way. Evil whips Kenta back into railing, then starts looking under the ring. He brings out chairs and jabs one into Kenta’s ribs. That chair’s not in good shape for what Evil wants, so he grabs another. Evil puts that chair around Kenta’s head! However, that broken chair still works for the HOMERUN!
Kenta falls from that chair shot, but fans fire up. Red Shoes reprimands Evil and tells him to get this back in the ring. Evil mostly ignores him to drag Kenta to the crowd! Anything Fale can do, Evil can do better, by throwing Kenta into the hallway! They brawl as they head backstage! Red Shoes follows to insist they go back to the ring. Evil brings Kenta around behind commentary and to the front row! The special VIP section clears out as Evil throws Kenta down! Evil clears some space by stacking chairs. Evil then drags Kenta over for a suplex, but Kenta resists! Kenta turns things around, but now Evil resists the suplex! Evil fights with body shots, and then suplexes Kenta again. Kenta fights back, too, and switches again, to suplex Evil onto the chair pile!
Evil writhes again while Kenta rises. Fans have a mixed reaction to the Pro-Wrestling NOAH and WWE alumni, but Kenta doesn’t care. He drags Evil back up and back to ringside as the ring count climbs to 10. Kenta gets Evil in at 13, then climbs up top. Kenta leaps to clothesline Evil down! Cover, TWO! Fans rally up for Evil but Kenta is on him again with stiff kicks in the corner. Then he scrapes his boot on Evil’s face over and over. Kenta wants to hear the fans so they boo. He runs, but Evil follows to clothesline him in the corner. But then Kenta returns the favor with a hell of a kick! But then Evil gets the clothesline again! And then baits Kenta into another clothesline! Evil drags Kenta up, fisherman buster! Cover, TWO!
Fans rally up for Evil again as he stalks Kenta to the ropes. Evil kicks and scrapes Kenta back for just a moment ago. But Kenta grabs the foot and stands, to put the foot down. But Evil intercepts the slap with a forearm! Evil runs, but into a powerslam! Kenta catches his breath then heads for a corner. Kenta springboards to missile dropkick Evil to a corner! Then runs in to flying BOOT! Evil sits down, and Kenta gives him the hesitation dropkick! Kenta fires up and fans have to give him credit where credit is due. Kenta climbs up top again, leaps, double stomps! Cover, TWO!! Evil survives Kenta’s coup de grace but Kenta slashes the throat. He drags Evil up but Evil resists the fireman’s carry. Evil spins Kenta but Kenta slips to a sleeper, then the fireman’s!
But Evil escapes, to German Suplex Kenta down! Both men are down but stirring as fans rally and duel. The two grind foreheads to start throwing forearms. Evil hits first then Kenta hits back, and repeat! They do not stop, they only speed up! Evil gets an edge but Kenta counter punches! Then clotheslines, but Evil stays up! Kenta pins but is blocked, Evil headbutts Kenta down! Evil grits his teeth while fans are thunderous. Evil fireman’s carries, DARKNESS FALLS! Cover, TWO!! Kenta just manages to survive, but Evil keeps his cool. Evil slashes his throat now, and drags Kenta up. He spins, but Kenta slips out to a backslide! TWO, and now a small package, TWO! Kenta runs but into a LARIAT! Cover, TWO!!
Evil falls back, exhausted and frustrated from Kenta’s resilience. But the fans do not give up, so neither does he. Evil stands, and pulls off the armbands. Evil watches Kenta stand, then runs, but Kenta dodges to PSYCHO KNEE! Cover, TWO!! Evil survives but Kenta keeps his cool. Kenta runs to hit a second Psycho Knee! Cover, TWO!? Evil survives twice, but Kenta won’t let there be another. Kenta gets himself up then watches Evil sit up. Kenta runs but the Penalty Kick is blocked! He tries fighting free of Evil’s grip, but Evil holds on through many, many forearms! But then Kenta kicks the headbutt away! PENALTY KICK! Kenta slashes his throat again, drags Evil up, and fireman’s carry, to GO TO SLEEP!! Cover, Kenta wins!!
Winner: Kenta, by pinfall; earns 2 points
The one true #GTS does it again! Kenta is undefeated, 4-0, in both a NJPW and G1 Climax debut! Kenta has 8 points, and for the moment, he leads A Block! Will he remain the one and only block leader? Or does The Rainmaker keep pace with the newcomer?
Kota Ibushi VS SANADA!
The Golden Star and the Cold Skull are not dead in the block yet! However, one man could end up in dire straits if they drop to 1-3. Which rising star rises above the other as we go deeper into the G1?
The bell rings and fans are already thunderous for these fan favorites. Sanada and Ibushi stare down then circle. They approach with caution, then tie up. Ibushi gets an arm but Sanada the waistlock. Ibushi wristlocks free, but Sanada spins through to wrench Ibushi back. They go around as Ibushi rolls and trips Sanada to a toehold. Sanada works to counter with a chinlock, but Ibushi keeps him off while wrenching the foot. Sanada uses a leg to bring Ibushi down, but Ibushi sits back up before an armbar can be applied. Ibushi works his way out to get Sanada’s legs and lace them, and then he shifts to a chinlock. Sanada stands up but Ibushi just shifts to a cravat. Sanada still endures, and handsprings through the snapmare!
Things speed up right away as they each hurdle the other. Sanada dodges to throw Ibushi but Ibushi sweeps the legs. Sanada kicks out to sweep Ibushi back, but Ibushi kicks out just as fast. The two go again, Sanada headlock takeovers but Ibushi headscissors back. Sanada pops out and ducks under a roundhouse! Ibushi ducks the rolling sabat and then just leaves Sanada hanging on the dropkick. Fans cheer as Ibushi smirks at Sanada. Sanada has to smirk at that, too, while Ibushi catches his breath in the corner. Fans cheer and duel as the two men reset.
Sanada points out the crowd is rather even between them. So each man goes to a corner to get the fans cheering. The fans are so thunderous, it really is hard to tell which way it’s going. The two climb back down, and they circle again. They tie up and are deadlocked for a moment. Ibushi powers Sanada back to the ropes but he lets up with a pat of the shoulders. Sanada rushes with a kick but is blocked, and Ibushi looks to steal Paradise!? Sanada powers out of that, and then baits Ibushi into going out of the ring. He fakes Ibushi out to then tumble back in with his insane agility! But Ibushi missile dropkicks Sanada down for that! Fans still duel as Ibushi watches Sanada. Ibushi also makes sure his legs are okay before bringing Sanada up in a mounted chinlock. He grabs the arm and make sit a half camel clutch.
Sanada endures and reaches for ropes, but Ibushi pulls him away. They roll away from the ropes and Ibushi body scissors Sanada. Sanada works against the hold while fans continue to cheer, and he gets a ropebreak. Ibushi lets go but doesn’t lose his cool. Ibushi wants to see Sanada fight, so he gives him stomps. He eggs Sanada on, and Sanada sits up. Sanada gives Ibushi what he wants, with a CHOP! Ibushi eggs him on more, so Sanada CHOPS more. Ibushi KICKS Sanada down, then moonsaults, but onto knees! The fans continue their own duel while Ibushi winces. Ibushi stands first to kick Sanada more. He whips but Sanada reverses, and we see those infamous hurdles and dropkick! Sanada slingshots to splash down on Ibushi!
Sanada leaves Ibushi behind to check on some Los Ingobernables de Japon fans. They have a Sanada bear, so he holds it up proudly! Then he goes back to Ibushi while encouraging fans to get loud. Sanada drags Ibushi up and into the ring, then slowly follows after. He drags Ibushi up and wants a saido, but Ibushi blocks with a headlock and elbows. Sanada knees Ibushi to a corner, then whips Ibushi corner to corner. Ibushi reverses but Sanada tumbles and springboards. Ibushi gets under and Sanada rolls through, and Sanada runs into Ibushi’s powerslam! Then a roll and moonsault! Cover, TWO! The fans are thunderous all over again while both men are down. Ibushi sits up with a smirk while Sanada slowly sits up.
Ibushi fires off a strike fest on Sanada, topping it off with that back kick. Sanada ducks the Penalty Kick but Ibushi counters the roll-up by sitting down! Cover, TWO and Sanada has Ibushi upside-down! TWO, Sanada blocks the kick to dropkick the other leg! Ibushi staggers while Sanada runs, but then Ibushi gets clear of the dropkick to double stomp Sanada down! Both men are writhing from stinging pain in their limbs but the fans rally again. Sanada sits up but Ibushi follows, and the two go forehead to forehead. Ibushi throws the first forearm but Sanada throws one back. Ibushi hits Sanada again, but Sanada still gives it back. Now they stand as they throw forearms back and forth! And they pick up speed! Ibushi wobbles! But he comes back with a kick!
Sanada catches his breath from that impact, to come back with a stiff European Uppercut. Ibushi shakes it off to kick again. So Sanada gives another EuroUpper. Another kick, another EuroUpper! Kick, upper, kick, upper, and then Sanada gives more forearms. He boots Ibushi’s away to rolling elbow, but Ibushi LARIATS on the return! Ibushi is up first as fans still duel. Powerbomb, LAST RIDE! Cover, TWO!! Sanada survives and both men are exhausted. Yet Ibushi sits up again, and wants those wrists. Ibushi drags Sanada up, but narrowly misses Kamigoye. He still has hold of Sanada to try again, but Sanada again dodges, back slide. Sanada rolls and pump handles Ibushi, to steal Kamigoye!! Cover, TWO!!
Ibushi survives his own move but Sanada keeps moving. Sanada goes up top, MOONSAULT but he FLOPS! BOMAYE! The King of Strong Style would be proud! But Ibushi clutches his knee and can’t make a cover! Fans are thunderous again as Ibushi slowly sits up. Ibushi forces himself to stand and then drags Sanada up again. He scoops but Sanada escapes, to dragon sleeper! But Ibushi slips around to suplex, only for Sanada to get him again! Ibushi steals the dragon sleeper, but Sanada blocks that stolen Skull End, only for Ibushi to escape the stolen long dart! Ibushi again lifts Sanada to LONG DART! Both men are down in the corner and Red Shoes checks on Sanada. Somehow both men are okay to continue, and fans still rally.
Sanada clutches his shoulder while Ibushi holds his knee. Ibushi still rises first and brings Sanada up in a waistlock. He wants the full nelson but Sanada resists. Sanada breaks free of the nelson, but Ibushi German Suplexes! Only for Sanada to land on his feet! Ibushi ducks the clothesline to PELE, but Sanad still hits a sabat! Sanada whips but Ibushi reverses, only to get caught into the dragon sleeper! Sanada takes Ibushi for a swing! Then he drops down, but Ibushi rolls out! Double wrist control, but Sanada dodges Kamigoye again, to spin and Sliced Bread for his dragon sleeper, only for Ibushi to slip out and ROUNDHOUSE him down! Sanada is down but Ibushi wants to end this like a rockstar! BOMAYE!! Cover, TWO!?!
Ibushi won’t stop just because Sanada lives. He brings a knee pad down and drags Sanada up in the wristlocks. Kamigoye!! Cover, Ibushi wins!!
Winner: Kota Ibushi, by pinfall; earns 2 points
After missing it time and again, the Golden Star finally hits his best move to end this match! Ibushi keeps himself alive in this tournament while Sanada stagnates. But Ibushi does go over to Sanada, to show that he still respects the Cold Skull. Sanada leaves without a word. Will either of these men make it to the end of A Block?
Kazuchika Okada VS Will Ospreay!
Once again, it is Chaos VS Chaos, Champion VS Champion, Mentor VS Student! The number 4 is considered bad luck in Japan, but will it be the Aerial Assassin’s lucky number? Or will the Rainmaker’s run remain unstained towards a collision course with Kenta?
The bell rings and the fans are already thunderous, with a lot of fans going for Ospreay! Okada and Ospreay circle and tie up. Okada waistlocks but Ospreay standing switches. Ospreay floats to a facelock but Okada switches that around. Ospreay switches it back, but Okada powers his way up to a wristlock. Okada wrenches but Ospreay spins through, reverses and snapmares to get a chinlock. Okada endures and works his way out the back. He hammerlocks Ospreay and snaps back to tweak it. Ospreay endures and works his way back up, to then hook and reverse the hammerlock onto Okada. Okada drop toeholds back to then waistlock to headlock. Okada throws Ospreay with a takeover, but Ospreay headscissors, only for Okada to pop out. Fans cheer as Ospreay and Okada stand off.
Heavyweight and Junior Heavyweight champions back away to corners while fans duel. They come back and tie up again. Okada and Ospreay have a test of strength and go shoulder to shoulder. Okada rolls back to put the pressure on Ospreay’s knuckles. He then spins Ospreay to a hammerlock then the headlock. Ospreay powers out but Okada runs him over with a shoulder. Fans cheer as Okada poses, but then things speed up, and Ospreay monkey flips Okada down! Okada bails out and Ospreay builds speed, but when Okada moves, Ospreay adjusts to handspring and superhero land! Fans are fired up behind the Aerial Assassin while he stares Okada down. Ospreay even offers Okada an easy entry. Okada politely refuses and Ospreay gives him space. Until Okada gets back in!
Ospreay is on Okada with big forearms in the corner, and a CHOP! Okada staggers to another corner, but Ospreay kicks him to CHOP him. Ospreay wrenches and whips corner to corner but Okada reverses. Okada runs into an elbow, but dropkicks Ospreay off the top! Ospreay is down on the outside and Okada is willing to wait. The ring count begins, but Okada offers that easy entry back. Ospreay also declines, so Okada gives him space to get in. Okada brings the sore Ospreay up for a big elbow to that bad shoulder! Ospreay winces as he goes to the ropes, but Okada keeps on him. Okada elbows the shoulder more, then scoop slams Ospreay fast, for an even faster slingshot senton!
Okada goes back to Ospreay and stands him back up. He bumps Ospreay off buckles hard, then throws a big back elbow. Ospreay winces but Okada just gives him another. Okada backs off for Red Shoes to check on Ospreay. Ospreay comes back with a CHOP! But Okada doesn’t flinch. Ospreay gives more CHOPS, but they still do nothing. Okada DECKS Ospreay with that forearm! Okada whips Ospreay corner to corner but Ospreay reverses, only to miss and get Okada’s elbow again. But then Ospreay scoops Okada for a sudden suplex! Okada looks both shocked and in pain while fans rally up. Ospreay grits his teeth as he gets to his feet. Okada walks into forearms, then a whip. But he dodges only to miss his elbow. He avoids the handspring once, but not on the return! Ospreay takes Okada down with the flipping enziguri!
Fans return to a thunderous rally as Ospreay fires himself up. Okada gets to a corner and Ospreay runs in, but Okada puts him on the apron. Ospreay forearms back, then Pip Pip Cheerio, flying forearm! Cover, TWO! Okada is dazed but he does survive. Ospreay drags Okada up and into the underhooks, but Okada resists the Stormbreaker. Ospreay throws forearms and another CHOP, and that one gets through to Okada. Fans rally up again as Ospreay stalks Okada in the corner. Ospreay brings Okada up and whips him corner to corner, only for Okada to reverse. Okada blocks the boot but not the enziguri! Tiger feint caught, into Alabama position, Air Raid Crash! Now things are even again as both men are down.
Fans cheer as Okada kips right up! Then shotgun dropkick! Ospreay hits buckles then hits the mat! Okada drags Ospreay back up and scoops for another slam. Then he heads up top, and fans cheer as Okada takes aim. Okada leaps, Macho Elbow hits! Fans fire up as Okada gives us the Rainmaker Pose! Okada reels Ospreay in but Ospreay backs him to a corner. Okada boots Ospreay then runs, but into Ospreay’s dropkick-flip! But Okada ducks the enziguri that follows, to reel Ospreay into a German Suplex! But Ospreay lands on his feet! ROUNDHOUSE! Ospreay whips but Okada still reverses, only for his dropkick to be left hanging! Ospreay’s shooting star gets knees! Okada whips and the dropkick hits this time!
Fans are thunderous once more as Okada gut wrenches, Tombstone Piledriver! Okada gives another pose, then reels Ospreay in, but Ospreay wheelbarrows and victory rolls! TWO, ROBINSON SPECIAL! The falling spin kick hits, and now Ospreay calls for his own. Ospreay springboards but the dropkick clips him enough to send him out! Okada has time to catch his breath now. He goes to the apron and drags Ospreay up. Okada fireman’s carries but Ospreay resists. Ospreay fights back with elbows and forearms. Okada hits back, and the two teeter on the apron’s edge. They keep hitting each other with forearms and they pick up speed. Ospreay gets the edge and sits Okada down! Fans fire up as Ospreay stands Okada up, only for Okada to uppercut! Fireman’s carry but Ospreay slips out to ROUNDHOUSE!
Okada staggers to the floor and Ospreay climbs, but Okada yanks him down! Ospreay is in a Tree of Woe on the outside, and Okada hauls him off for a Tombstone position, only for Ospreay to shove out. HOOK KICK! OSCUTTER!! Ospreay uses railing for a springboard to drop Okada to the floor! Fans rally again while Red Shoes checks on both champions. They’re still okay so a ring count begins. Ospreay sits up at 8 and stands at 11 to get in at 12. But Okada is still outside as the count passes 15! Okada staggers at 18 and hops in at 19.5! Ospreay flies in with a Coast 2 Coast missile dropkick!! Cover, TWO!! Okada lives and Ospreay can’t believe it. Ospreay keeps moving, springboard to OSCUTTER! Cover, TWO!?
The fans are back at a thunderous level as Ospreay can’t believe Okada survives! Ospreay refocuses with a wild look in his eyes. He drags Okada over to a corner, and he uses said corner to leap, but into a GERMAN SUPLEX! Okada holds on and wristlocks, but Ospreay escapes only to run into another dropkick! Okada fires up, stands Ospreay up for the wristlock, Rain-SPANISH FLY!? Cover, TWO!! Ospreay scrambles to a corner and the top rope, SHOOTING STAR!! Cover, TWO!?! Okada survives by the skin of his teeth and the fans are at that fever pitch! Ospreay still has one thing left to try and he vows to do it! He drags Okada up, underhooks, and lifts… STORM- Gut wrench, but Ospreay turns that around! Ospreay throws in knees before stealing the TOMBSTONE!!
But Ospreay won’t end it with Okada’s move! He stands Okada up, spins him around, HOOK KICK! Underhooks, lift, but Okada slips out to point-blank RAINMAKER! But Okada holds onto the wrist, too! Ospreay and Okada both have looks in their eyes like they’re in another space, as Okada drags Ospreay up for another RAINMAKER! Okada isn’t done there, either! He drags Ospreay up, wristlocks, but Ospreay slips through! Underhooks, lift, but Okada still escapes Stormbreaker! Ospreay tries to steal Rainmaker at the last second, but Okada ducks and spins Ospreay for a DISCUS RAINMAKER!! And as Okada himself reaches a fever pitch, TRUE RAINMAKER!!!! Cover, Okada wins!!
Winner: Kazuchika Okada, by pinfall; earns 2 points
4-0 is a magic number! Okada is 4-0 against Ospreay all-time, and is 4-0 in G1 Climax 29! The Rainmaker will stay even with Kenta, and now it comes down to them! When these two top A Block contenders meet, there can only be one!
NJPW returns as Okada has the mic.
He counts his wins, and says he has “Number four~!” The G1 Climax isn’t even halfway over though, huh? But clearly, Okada still has life yet. Okada vows that the next time he’s in Tokyo, it will be for the Budokan three-day event. And he looks forward to closing out this tournament with another win here. Fans like the sound of that! Okada continues to say, “Let’s keep this thing rolling, folks!” When the G1 Climax returns to Tokyo, NJPW and Okada will #MakeItRain! A short but sweet statement by THE IWGP Heavyweight Champion!
NJPW Media Backstage Interviews
Okada admits “Ospreay was really strong.” And that’s all there is to that, “because it’s already in the past.” But now on to Nagoya, and Kenta. “As the IWGP Heavyweight Champion, the top of the food chain in the pro-wrestling world,” he’ll make sure Kenta will get “a taste of my power.” Another short and sweet statement for the champion. With plenty of Climax left, who will be the very top of A Block after the next round? And who else will start the hard climb up to join them at this whole ‘nother level?
Another great, great night for AXS’s coverage of NJPW. There’s just so much of the G1 Climax going on, it is all AXS can do to cover Night 7 the same day as it happened in Japan. But it doesn’t matter what night, all the action is great! Nobody lets up just because they’re down, since they can also spoil things for their opponents. And that’s clear with ZSJ and Fale. A similar strategy used against Fale last year, ZSJ strands him outside and lets the ring count take care of him. Tanahashi winning with a victory roll on Archer was great, because it really frames how dangerous Archer has become. This will be great for Archer coming out of the tournament as he looks for targets for feuds. His first feud might even be Tanahashi so we get a decisive finish between them.
Both of A Block’s LIJ members did great tonight, even in defeat. Evil and Kenta was a great match, with Evil slowly but surely proving he can be a singles contender like Sanada. But obviously given Kenta and Okada are next, it just makes sense to have Kenta be undefeated to hype that match. Sanada VS Ibushi was a great match, and it felt like it could’ve gone either way. But it is a great choice to have Ibushi win because it will force Sanada to rethink things just a bit, while Ibushi grows stronger as a reward for his dedication to NJPW. Ospreay’s story was incredible for being twofold: he wants to get wins in the tournament, but he also wants to show he finally can beat Okada. And him losing is a double-down on his long journey of rising up. And again, Okada staying undefeated to go against undefeated Kenta, that just makes the next round even more critical to watch.
My Score: 9.1/10
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