Ring of Honor Wrestling Television, Episode 375
There are NEW ROH World Tag Team Champions, and it’s SoCal Uncensored! But they need challengers, so The Young Bucks and the Briscoes battle for that right!
- The Kingdom VS The Boys; turned into…
- 2v1 Handicap Match: The Boys VS Matt Taven; Taven wins.
- WOH World Championship Fatal 4 Way qualifier: Jenny Rose VS Kelly Klein; Klein wins and joins the WOH World Championship match at Final Battle.
- ROH World Tag Team Championship #1 Contenders match: The Young Bucks VS The Briscoes; Double Disqualification, both teams will compete in a ROH World Tag Team Championship Ladder War.
PLAY BY PLAY
Last time on ROH…
It was the epic Triple Threat Tag match for the World Tag Team Championships. The Briscoes knew they were up against two great teams in The Young Bucks and The Addiction, so it was two weeks ago on Episode 373 that Jay & Mark made sure to remove Christopher Daniels from the equation. A Jay Driller to the stage made it so that The Fallen Angel couldn’t compete, but luckily SoCal Uncensored had a Closer. Scorpio Sky stood beside Frankie Kazarian in that match of tag team titans, and they WON! SCU ends the reign of terror, but have they stopped the Final Battle countdown?
The Kingdom VS The Boys!
The “real” ROH World Champion and his crew did not take a loss to the returning Peacock well. So last week, as Dalton Castle staked a claim to Jay Lethal’s world title, The Kingdom attacked and gave him a TRIPLE con-chair-to! Now Castle’s Boys want payback, but will they get it? Because conspicuous by his absence is the Horror King, Vinnie Marseglia…
Before the match, Taven speaks. “Is this a joke?” The Boys against The Kingdom? Taven knows both of them are sticking up for Castle, but he assures them they’ll get hurt just like Castle. Because it won’t even take both of them to do this. Taven says TK O’Ryan can join commentary to help them hype Taven up. He can do this on his own. He’ll teach The Boys a lesson their daddy should’ve taught them a long time ago: “You never mess with the leader of the pride. Especially when he’s the REAL ROH World Champion.” Why? “Because IIIII’M Matt Taven!” And then he sucker punches Boy 2 with the belt! Boy 1 is shocked, but then he focuses as the bell rings.
2v1 Handicap Match: The Boys VS Matt Taven!
Taven corners Boy 1 but Boy 1 gets away. TK says that belt shot was completely fair because the match hadn’t started. Taven circles with Boy 1 and corners him again. Boy 1 gets away but not for long as Taven catches him in another corner. Taven whips Boy 1 corner to corner, but BOy 1 goes up and over. Boy 1 runs and slides and chops! He throws haymakers but Taven shoves him down. Taven kicks and punches and DDT’s Boy 1 down! Fans boo while Taven mockingly fans Boy 1 off. TK laughs, but he’s the only one. Taven taunts Boy 1 before standing him up to punch him down. He then puts Boy 1 in a corner to stomp a mudhole into him. The referee pulls Taven off but Taven is smug and egging Boy 1 on while we go to break.
ROH returns and Taven circles Boy 1 like a shark with blood in the water. Taven snapmares Boy 1 and uses Just the Tip of the knee. Taven brags but Boy 2 returns. He baits Taven in and rolls him to then boot him. Boy 2 runs and spikes Taven with a huricanrana! Boy 2 then whips Taven and gets a waistlock. He feeds Taven to Boy 1’s huricanrana! Taven ends up on the apron and Boy 1 knocks him down. Taven gets back up but Boy 2 knocks him down. Boy 2 slingshots but Taven catches him! Boy 1 slingshots and takes Taven out! Fans fire up with The Boys as they put Taven back in. Fans rally but the red balloons appear! Vinnie drags Boy 2 under the ring! Boy 1 is in fear for his brother, but Taven gets him with the Climax! Cover, Taven wins!
Winner: Matt Taven, by pinfall
TK is so proud of his fearless leader, and now it’s time to celebrate. The “real” world champion rolls on towards Final Battle, will The Peacock make a recovery in time to give Taven what he deserves?
Cody speaks on his actual ROH World Championship match.
Final Battle also marks the anniversary of The American Nightmare’s time in ROH, but also of losing the title. And it also comes full circle as Jay Lethal was Cody’s first opponent in ROH. Cody lost his title in a Triple Threat involving Dalton Castle and Marty Scurll, but he hasn’t had his 1v1 rematch for the title the entire year since. The math was always off, but this rematch is vindication for him. Can the American Nightmare make the best of this long-awaited moment?
Ian Riccaboni introduces The Octopus, Jonathan Gresham!
Perhaps the best technical wrestler in ROH today, Gresham joins Riccaboni in the ring, and reflects on his stellar 2018. He wants this time in the ring, and surely it has to do with Final Battle. Obviously his new friend, Jay Lethal, has a title match at Final Battle, but Gresham has nothing to do. Gresham came to ROH to prove he IS the best pure wrestler in the world today. Therefore, Gresham feels Final Battle is the perfect place to issue an Open Challenge! He welcomes any and all of the great technical wrestlers to come to “my company”, so that Gresham can prove he’s still the best.
But almost immediately on the titantron, someone accepts Gresham’s challenge. It’s Zack Sabre Jr!! The Submission Master of NJPW knows Gresham thinks he’s the best and wants to prove it, so Gresham’s in luck. Because ZSJ knows he’s the best, and will visit ROH to prove it. Gresham VS ZSJ, Final Battle, it’s perfect. Fans love it and chant “Sabre Jr!” Gresham doesn’t need to say anything more than “Who’s ready to know who the best technical wrestler in the world is?” Get ready to watch Gresham make ZSJ #JustTapOut!
Christopher Daniels makes a phone call.
“Joe, I will have the signed copies scanned and sent to you first thing in the morning. And listen, I just want to say again, I appreciate this. You have my word.” Daniels finishes his call with Joe Koff, and tells SCU that the contracts are in! Well, not for all of them. Scorpio and Kaz have contracts, because they’re the champions. But that’s not good enough. Well it’s the best Daniels could get out of Koff. Then what is Daniels going to do for himself? There’s still time, he’ll figure it out. But that’s not much of a plan. What can the Fallen Angel possibly do to keep himself in ROH past Final Battle?
WOH World Championship Fatal 4 Way qualifier: Jenny Rose VS Kelly Klein!
It seems one challenger is no longer enough for the Ray of Sunshine, Sumie Sakai. She wants to raise the difficulty on her inaugural reign, so she’s willing to take on three opponents. At the same time, the American Joshi and the Pretty Badass have history and they plan on settling it on the way to the title. Will Kelly get back at Jenny for that chipped tooth? Or will she end up with more missing teeth after Jenny gets through with her?
Jenny shoves Kelly the moment she hits the ring, so Kelly shoves back. The bad blood is boiling over and the slaps begin! The ref rings the bell and the two women tie up. Kelly puts Jenny in a corner but backs off. Jenny comes back but Kelly kicks and fireman’s carry. Jenny sunset flips, ONE! Kelly rushes Jenny but Jenny kicks her back. Jenny wants the urenage but Kelly elbows out of it. Kelly gets a waistlock and rolls back to a cover, TWO! Jenny gets up but Kelly is on her with forearms. Jenny hits back and now they brawl. Fans get on Jenny’s side while she gets a waistlock. Kelly grabs ropes in the corner and turns things around. She drives elbows into Jenny from both sides and picks up speed, but stops at 4.
Jenny gets to ropes but Kelly brings her out for cravat and knees! Kelly stops at 2, then knee lifts Jenny back into the ring. Fans cheer the aggression but Jenny trips Kelly! Kelly falls on the apron, but gets up only for Jenny to dropkick her down. Jenny pursues Kelly and kicks her more. Fans fire up as she runs in, but Kelly sends her into barriers! Kelly gets some space while Jenny sits in a chair. Kelly rains rights on her, then puts Jenny back in the ring. Jenny hits back while we go to break.
ROH returns as Kelly whips Jenny to a corner. Kelly runs in for forearms and elbows. But Jenny chops back! Sumie Sakai appears with her own chair to have a seat nearby. She wants to watch her friendly rival and not-so-friendly rival battle for that final spot at Final Battle. Jenny runs back in at Kelly but Kelly elbows her back. Kelly brings Jenny over for a hangman’s sleeper hold! The ref counts and Kelly lets Jenny go. Jenny comes back with a haymaker, then climbs up to join her. They battle it out as Jenny wants a superplex. Kelly shoves Jenny away but Jenny’s right back with a chop! Jenny throws Kelly down hard! Fans rally up while Jenny catches her breath.
Jenny stalks Kelly to ropes for more kicks. She throws more forearms, then whips, but Kelly holds ropes. Jenny tries again but Kelly reverses. Jenny breaks free and hits a code breaker! Kelly staggers while Jenny runs, SPEAR! Cover, TWO! Kelly survives but Jenny is on her with more right hands! Jenny chases Kelly to ropes but the ref counts. She fires off all the way to 4, then brings Kelly up by her hair. Kelly resists and grabs more ropes. Jenny lets go and runs back in, but into the fireman’s carry! K Power Driver! Cover, Kelly wins!
Winner: Kelly Klein, by pinfall; qualifies for the WOH World Championship Fatal 4 Way
The Gatekeeper joins Karen Q and Madison Rayne in challenging Sumie Sakai at Final Battle! Kelly has been chasing after the title since before it was made, will her time finally come? Will the Queen of Queens or the Queen Bee stand in her way? Or will the Ray of Sunshine retain and maintain her inaugural run?
ROH takes a look towards the World Television Championship match at Final Battle!
Hangman Adam Page has established himself strongly in the heavyweight division, and he’s hungry for gold. But the Hawaiian Hulk, Mr. Athletic himself, finally arrived and he’s already cleared out the Top Prospect Tournament, dethroned Punishment Martinez, and dominated Shane Taylor. Page may be jaded, but Cobb is actually a disappointment. What will Cobb do when he faces someone just as strong as him? Someone who hits even harder than him? Someone who is actually a challenge for him? The Problem Solver is confident in himself, but can even he solve a problem like Jeff Cobb?
Do you feel your heart beating?
Badum, badum, badumbadumbadum. The heartbeat is coming for ROH. Who will it leave flat lining in the ring?
ROH World Tag Team Championship #1 Contenders match: The Young Bucks VS The Briscoes!
Brothers will battle brothers once more as Matt & Nick Jackson take on Mark & Jay Briscoe. Who will win to then face Scorpio Sky & Frankie Kazarian at Final Battle?
Fans fire up just for the Young Bucks’ entrance, so clearly they’re ready for a Superkick Party. The teams sort out while fans chant “The! Elite! The the Elite!” Jay tells fans to “Shut the hell up! Y’all sound like idiots!” Mark also throws some insults their way, but the fans just boo and jeer back. Mark and Nick start with the bell and fans rally up as they circle. Nick and Mark tie up but Mark kicks low. Mark goes to chop but Nick dodges to kick and forearm. Nick whips but Mark goes up and over. Nick counter punches and chops, to then “Lucha libre~” arm-drag! Mark runs and slides under Nick to then chop him at the ropes. Mark runs but into a heel kick! Both of them are ready to punch but they stop short.
Mark shoves Nick then calls for a test of strength, but it’s a distraction so that Jay can clobber him! Matt gets in to save his brother, and he rallies with haymakers on #DemBoys. The Brisoces hit Matt back and double whip. Matt kicks their back drops away, and then gives Nick the boost for a double missile dropkick! Fans fire up for The Bucks while the Briscoes are reeling. Nick whips Matt at Mark but Mark puts him on the apron. Nick runs in and sings Mark sideways for a draping neckbreaker! He keeps Mark up while he tags to Matt, Matt slingshots for a senton onto Mark! Matt dropkicks Jay away then skins the cat. The Bucks control the ring while we go to break.
ROH returns again as Matt whips Mark corner to corner. Mark reverses and Jay comes in for a big corner clothesline. Jay then feeds Matt right to Mark’s shotgun dropkick! Jay hits Nick down for good measure while Mark brings Matt to the Briscoes corner. Mark tags Jay and now Jay legally mugs Matt. Jay puts Matt in a corner and stomps a mudhole into him. He grinds his boot in but backs off at 4. Fans boo and jeer but Jay ignores them. He brings Matt back and tags in Mark. Now Mark stomps a mudhole, then he gives a CHOP. Mark back suplexes Matt down then covers, TWO! Fans rally up for The Bucks but Mark pushes Matt on the ropes. Mark chokes Matt on the ropes, then backs off, but Jay gets a choke in! Nick protests but The Briscoes get away with it.
Mark gives Matt an uppercut, then a headbutt. Matt staggers while Mark tags in Jay. Mark holds Matt for Jay to boot on the run. Fans boo and jeer but The Briscoes don’t care. Jay gives Matt a European Uppercut, then Mark holds Matt so Jay can stomp another mudhole into him. Tag to Mark, and they double whip Matt. Matt dodges and hits them both with clotheslines! Fans fire up as Matt crawls for his corner. Mark goes after Nick to deny the tag. He then throws hands and whips Matt corner to corner. Mark runs in but Matt dodges! Matt puts Mark on the ropes, then dodges Jay. Tag to Nick! Nick kicks Jay! Nick springboards to dumdum stomp Jay, then rolls to hit a draping backstabber on Mark!
Fans fire up again as The Bucks coordinate. They whip The Briscoes at each other but The Briscoes reverse. The Bucks swing their partners and get double takedowns to double Sharpshooters! Fans are thunderous for the Double Ceases, but both Briscoes get ropebreaks. The Bucks let them go, but Nick tags in Matt. Matt hoists Mark up but Mark fights out. Nick jumps over Matt but into Mark’s urenage exploder! Mark runs at Matt but gets a back elbow. Matt hops up but Mark clubs his bad back. Mark has a crucifix, Jay comes in, Redneck Boogie bomb! Cover, TWO!! Matt lives and The Briscoes are furious. Mark drags Matt over and tags in Jay. Jay stomps Matt and then copies the Sharpshooter! Fans boo but Jay bends Matt’s bad back back. Matt crawls, ropebreak! Jay lets Matt go, we go to one last commercial break.
ROH returns once more, and Jay has Matt reeling. Jay gives more EuroUppers, and Mark holds Matt for more mugging. Tag to Mark and Mark climbs. Jay hoists Matt up in the Electric Chair, but Matt fights his way out. Jay runs at Matt but Matt dumps him out! Nick kicks Jay from the apron while Matt boots Mark! Tag to Nick, Matt feeds Mark to Nick’s shoulder. Nick slingshots for the X-factor! Then Nick cartwheels for the tornado DDT! Matt gets Mark again, catapult into Nick’s kick! Nick climbs and gives Mark a blockbuster across Matt’s knees! Cover, TWO!! Mark survives and The Bucks are stunned. Fans thought that was it, but they do know “This is Awesome!” Jay returns but Nick is on him.
They all brawl back and forth, Bucks hitting and Briscoes responding. They pick up speed, and then the Bucks kick. The Bucks run but into Briscoe SUPERKICKS! The Briscoes run but into Young Buck SUPERKICKS! Jay falls so Mark gets double SUPERKICKS! Cover, TWO!! The Superkick Party hasn’t ended this match, but The Bucks have plenty left to try. Matt scoops Mark, but Jay throws a chair in! Matt lets Mark go as Jay runs in with another chair. Jay swings but Matt dodges while picking up that first chair. Neither man swings again, because a disqualification ruins their championship chances. Nick enters while Mark stands, Jay and Matt throw the chairs at their opponent’s brother!
Yes, throwing a chair at someone’s face in full view of the referee is grounds for disqualification, even though Matt and Jay don’t get it. Fans boo and jeer, but then fire up as Matt and Jay pick the chairs back up! It’s a chair fight as they clash steel! Matt lets go of his chair, but blocks Jay’s next attack! And he deflects it into the referee! If they weren’t disqualified, they are now… But the fans are thunderous, and a brawl breaks out again!
Matt puts Jay in a corner while Nick denies Mark a chair shot. Nick SUPERKICKS Mark! Jay powers Matt to a different corner while Nick throws the chair at Mark’s head! Nick SUPERKICKS Jay! Mark throws the chair back at Nick! Matt picks up the chair to throw at Mark! Jay clobbers Matt from behind, then picks up the chair to throw at Matt. The Briscoes have The Bucks on the defensive, but Matt and Nick still fight back. Mark saves Jay from Matt’s sleeper hold, but here comes ROH security. Fans boo and jeer more, they wan to “Let Them Fight!” Matt, Nick, Jay and Mark have one security guard each but they still want to fight. But here comes SCU!
The World Tag Team Champions, who are set to defend against Guerrero Maya Jr. and Stuka Jr. next week in episode 376, tell Briscoes and Bucks that “This match was supposed to determine who’s the #1 contenders for our world tag team championships.” Unfortunately, they both lost. But that doesn’t work for the fans and that doesn’t work for SCU. Ironically, the last time Kaz had these titles, The Bucks took it from him and Daniels in no ordinary match. It was the most brutal match in Kaz’s career, a match that sent him and Daniels to the hospital. These last two years, not a day goes by without thinking about that match.
The Bucks and Briscoes just went through a war, and fans anticipate what that means. This war has been well-documented, SCU is still at war with The Briscoes “chicken-farming asses”. Therefore, SCU is prepared to defend their titles against both teams. And not just in an ordinary match, Final Battle will see Briscoes VS Bucks VS SCU, in a LADDER WAR!! “Do we have an accord?” Fans say “YES!” and it seems so do The Briscoes and Young Bucks! Well then, SCU will see you at Final Battle. There will be no question as to who wins such a match, are Kaz and Scorpio throwing away the belts they only just won? And what of their match with Team CMLL next week?
A really good episode, but I feel like wires got crossed for ROH’s booking again. It was like they were treating this as a go-home when it’s clearly not the Final Battle go-home. Though, given ROH only runs an hour, I suppose much of tonight was the go-home segment for certain stories. For example, Matt Taven smugly taking on both Boys yet still needing Vinnie to interfere is perfect Heel tactics for The Kingdom, and it all felt like the go-home towards his grudge match with Dalton Castle. I’m sure Castle will be just fine for Final Battle, though he’ll be selling everything to make his victory even sweeter. Then we get a great interview promo from Cody to hype up his match with Jay Lethal, and I feel Castle moving on to face the winner of that world title match is the planned outcome.
I don’t know what it was about Kelly Klein VS Jenny Rose, but while I’m sure it is considered the blow-off for them, it just didn’t feel as good as it could be. The story was there, the motivation was there, just not the quality of action. Jenny Rose just didn’t seem as smooth as she should be given all the time she’s spent in the ring and with Kelly Klein. Kelly naturally wins to keep the Face-Heel balance of the Fatal 4 Way, but it also felt like the way this story was going to go. I’m pretty sure if Sumie doesn’t retain, Kelly finally becomes the second-ever champion. Sumie already set a high mark and has faced just about everyone she could, so it’s time to pass the belt on to Kelly for fresh feuds.
I correctly predicted that winning the tag titles only secures Kaz and Scorpio still have contracts with ROH, and going with that is a great twist to the story. Final Battle already has a match for the World Television Championship and World Heavyweight Championship, but those titles make a lot of sense for Daniels to go after to keep his ROH contract. Hangman’s promo seems a bit too confident to me, but I would hope he backs up his words against Jeff Cobb. And even if he does, I still don’t see Cobb losing that belt so soon. Then Gresham VS ZSJ is going to be a true technical masterpiece. The only thing that would make it better is if it were for a title of its own. I was hoping Gresham would revive the ROH Pure Wrestling Championship, and this could’ve been the perfect match to do it with.
Then the tag team main event was amazing, as we’ve seen this for the tag titles many times before. Not even the double disqualification finish ruins it, it just makes it better because we’re getting a Ladder War match now! Scorpio & Kaz take on two CMLL talents, and while I’m sure they’ll play up the drama of not making it to their own match idea, they’ll still retain. The Ladder War itself could go any which way, but I would hope the SCU retain so that their triumphant win last week wasn’t just to make them transitional champions for a Young Bucks reign or The Briscoes’ historic 10th reign. Again, they can play up the drama, but still let Kaz & Scorpio win.
My Score: 8.4/10
Dragon Gate Fantastic Gate 2018 Results & Review (12/4/2018)
Mathew brings us more coverage with…Dragon Gate? Well I suppose something big did happen, even though King of Gate was still horrid. But hey, let’s see if PAC’s involvement helps things out.
We now return to Dragon Gate to take a small break from the AJPW Real World Tag League, which you should check out if you haven’t just yet since it’s been a great tournament.
As of right now, this will be my last Dragon Gate coverage for the year due to scheduling with the holidays and work, plus I need to get ready for matches of the year at the end of the month. We got a big show today since we got Open the Dream Gate Championship defended against PAC.
So let us see how things will turn out as we…dive right in.
Eight Man Tag Team Match
Dragon Dia & Tribe Vanguard (BxB Hulk, Kagetora & YAMATO) vs. Don Fujii, Gamma, Ryo Saito & Super Shisa
Review: Our opening contest is an eight-man tag match with Don Fujii, Gamma, Ryo Saito, and Super Shisa taking on three members of Tribe Vanguard, Kagetora and the Open the Twin Gate Champions, BxB Hulk and YAMATO along with Dragon Dia. Dragon Dia is a new wrestler in Dragon Gate as he is also considered to be Dragon Kid’s new apprentice whenever he decides to hang it up. Let’s see how Dragon Dia does and will he help Tribe Vanguard get the victory or will it be the other team?
The match was short and incredibly basic with nothing really too much to make the crowd seem overly invested in it in my opinion. Half of the match is pretty much Dia paying his dues in the ring while also getting a bit of offense into the match, so how did he do? From what I saw out of him, I thought he does have potential to be how Dragon Kid was but he has a long way to go if he wants to reach that level eventually. Dia did take a beating from the other team and even had Gamma kinda waterboard him while he was taking a Mexican Stretch. Tribe Vanguard would do stuff for a little bit into the match and they worked well with each other and not with Dia since he’s not really apart of their unit. Dia would get to have Fujii for a pinfall but he kicked out and hits Dia with a Lariat to end his momentum. Fujii would hit a Chokeslam onto Dia as Ryo would do his SaiRyo Rocket to get the pinfall victory.
Rating: Tony Schiavone and a quarter
Eight Man Tag Team Match
Hyo Watanabe, Kota Minoura, Masaaki Mochizuki & Yuki Yoshioka vs. Hiroshi Yamato & MaxiMuM (Jason Lee, Kaito Ishida & Naruki Doi)
Review: We get another eight-man tag match to continue this show as Masaaki Mochizuki is in action with Hyo Watanabe, Kota Minoura, and Yuki Yoshioka as the four take on Hiroshi Yamato and three MaxiMuM members, Jason Lee, Kaito Ishida, and Naruki Doi. While the opening match wasn’t really something that was memorable, I’m sure we’ll get some action in this one to pick stuff up. Which one of these four will win?
I’m still new to Hiroshi Yamato, but I’m still digging his singing type of gimmick and think it’s pretty funny. This one was a much better match than the opening contest since all of the competitors were more involved in this We had another small encounter with Mochizuki and Lee, and I still wanna see that match happen but I know we probably won’t get a singles match with them any time soon. Yuki is someone that keeps growing on me whenever I see him involved in these tag matches as he does show signs of progress and I hope to see big things from him in 2019. Jason Lee would try to do his taunt in the ring when he’s in his meditative state and rolled up Mochizuki for a two count and when Mochizuki would try to do the same taunt, Jason would just kick his head. Yuki would block Naruki’s Bakatare Sliding Kick but takes a German from Yamato, a Facebuster from Naruki, and a kick along with a German from Lee as they break the hold. Yuki would attempt a flash pin onto Kaito but Kaito would quickly maneuver out of it until Yuki pinned him back down as he gets the surprise victory!
Rating: Eric Bischoff
Shun Skywalker vs. U-T
Review: We only have two singles matches in this show and it’s time to get our first one underway as we have Shun Skywalker taking on U-T. It’s been a while since I’ve seen Shun in a singles match since the King of Gate Tournament and this might be the first time I’ve seen U-T in a singles match, so this is definitely a nice surprise since both men can go. Which one of these two will get the win?
If you were expecting a highflying type of match between these two, you don’t get that type of match here and while it did throw me off, I was honestly okay with it since they still did give us a technical match. For my first time seeing U-T in one on one action, I gotta say that seeing him more ground-based in this match was very surprising in a good way too since he’s very crisp in his ability. Shun Skywalker still continues to impress me every time I see him in the ring, so seeing both of these men deliver in this match made me feel very satisfied.
The match was also very even here and it looked like Shun was going to get him, but U-T would catch him with the Skayde to try and make him tap out to the hold until Shun would roll out of the hold and hits the Moonsault Press for a two count. Shun would hit a Reverse Suplex and goes to the top rope to go for another Moonsault as U-T puts his knees up before Shun could land. U-T would apply the Skayde once again but Shun would refuse to tap out of the hold once again and the bell rings to show that there’s a time limit draw. Huge ovation for these two in this match and I hope this isn’t the end for them.
Rating: Bruce Prichard
Six Man Tag Team Match
Dragon Kid, Bandido, & Flamita vs. DAGA & R.E.D. (Eita & Ben-K)
Review: Our next match is a six-man tag team match with Dragon Kid teaming up with Flamita and Bandido is they take on R.E.D. We found out that Dragon Kid and Eita are going to have one final match at Final Gate in a hair vs mask match, but I’m not sure if the Open the Brave Gate Championship is on the line yet. But this is sure to be an exciting tag bout and let’s see if R.E.D wins or the luchadors take it.
R.E.D starting the attack on their opponents before the match started in their typical heel fashion. The face team would start to make a comeback with Bandido and Flamita diving to the outside onto their opponents. Seeing Kid, Flamita, and Bandido team up worked out very well here with their Luchador agility with Bandido once again being on fire in this match and if he’s someone you follow, what the hell is wrong with you? Get on that shit right away if you like Lucha Libre. It’s a shame Ben didn’t win the belt but I know he’ll bounce back into something soon, maybe going back to the Open the Twin Gate picture with Big R. Eita and Dragon Kid going back at it develops more fuel into their story and I actually can’t wait for it to end and not because it felt like it went on for too long, but with the new stipulation they added to their match, it just adds a lot more involved for their eventual conclusion. After Flamita and Bandido did their tag team combo with Bandido hitting a Phoenix Splash after being flipped over, Eita and Kid are alone in the ring again. Dragon jumped off the ropes and got caught for a Super Kick and would go to finish off Kid but he hits the Bible onto Eita to get the surprise victory!
Rating: Eric Bischoff and a half
Eight Man Tag Team Match
Natural Vibes (Genki Horiguchi, Kzy, Susumu Yokosuka & YASSHI) vs. R.E.D. (Big R Shimizu, KAZMA SAKAMOTO, Takashi Yoshida & Yasushi Kanda)
Review: Our next match is another eight-man tag team match with R.E.D members, Big R Shimizu, KAZMA SAKAMOTO, Takashi Yoshida, and Yasushi Kanda taking on Natural Vibes members, Genki Horiguchi, Kzy, Susumu Yokosuka, and Brother YASSHI. Recently, Natural Vibes broke the record for most title defenses with the Open the Triangle Gate Championships and they still look to hold onto the titles for a long time to keep the record around more. Will Natural Vibes get the win or will it be R.E.D?
R.E.D once again attacking Natural Vibes before the bell would ring and both teams would start fighting to the outside of the ring and into the crowd near the bleachers until they got back into the ring as we get the match started now. The match felt a little too short for this type of match but I thought it was still solid enough for a quick little exhibition type of match. We had a little encounter with Takashi and Kzy during the middle of it where they would go back and forth and it did seem like Takashi was gonna win this little back and forth until Kzy hits his running Elbow Smash onto him. Natural Vibes started to get the shine in the match when Susumu hits an Exploder Suplex onto Kanda off the middle rope and Kzy tops it off with an Elbow Drop while YASSHI hits a Diving Headbutt for a two count. Members were taking each other out left and right until it was Genki and Takashi in the match now as he does his Backslide From Heaven to go for the pin but Big R picked him up in a Wheel Barrel position for a German Suplex. Big R would quickly pick him up for him and Takashi to hit a Doomsday Device and KAZMA topped it off with a Package Piledriver to give R.E.D the win.
Rating: Eric Bischoff and a quarter
Open the Dream Gate Championship
Masato Yoshino (c) vs. PAC
Review: We now have our main event of the evening as Masato Yoshino defends his Open the Dream Gate Championship against PAC. This will be PAC’s second singles match in Dragon Gate ever since he made his return to the company and while his match was disappointing, he still wanted to make the challenge to prove himself. Only one gaijin won the Open the Dream Gate Championship and that man was Ricochet, so if PAC wins then he will be the second one to win it. Masato though won’t go down without a fight here as he defends Dragon Gate against this man. Will Masato retain once again or will we have a new champion?
While both R.E.D and MaxiMuM are surrounding the ring, none of them interfere in the match and I’m glad too because it would’ve been a little bit too much in this match, plus PAC needs to prove himself that he can defeat Masato on his own without any help. I thought this match was a great title defense and definitely PAC’s better match compared to his one with Flamita since this one had a nicer pace that didn’t make it drag out a bit at all and he played the heel persona well like how he did in WWE when he was considered the King of the Cruiserweights, but he’s now known as the Bastard Child in Dragon Gate. I think I liked Masato’s match against Ben-K a little bit better, this one was almost as good in my opinion. One spot I really did like was when Masato went for the Slingblade off the top rope and PAC just flipped out of it and it just looked more smooth. Also, the Corkscrew PAC did to the outside looks great despite him shooting himself a little bit too far since most of the people were a bit too close.
PAC pulled off a lot of power moves like the Pop-up Powerbomb and it looked like he had Masato right where he wanted him as he went to the top rope to go for the Black Arrow but he was able to catch himself once Masato moved out of the way and hits the Another Space and then would hit the first Torbellino as he calls for the submission finish to apply the Sol Naciente, but he wouldn’t hold it for long this time as PAC picked him up for the Powerbomb for a two count. PAC seems to be getting back control now as he would try to go for the Black Arrow once more time but Masato picked his knees up to make PAC land on it and rolled him up for a two count. Masato wouldn’t give PAC time to rest as he hits a second Torbellino and applies the Sol Naciente once again but PAC was unable to power out of it this time around as he falls onto the mat unable to move for a bit until his foot landed on the rope to break the hold. Both men would have bursts of energy in the last stand as Masato lands another Torbellino and PAC gets up quickly to hit Masato with a German Suplex and gets him up for a Powerbomb but Masato would Sunset Flip over him for a two count. PAC would hit a Lariat onto Masato to knock him down before hitting the German Suplex Hold for a two count, and it appears PAC has him right where he wants him as he went to the top rope to the Black Arrow and he connects this time for a three count and we have a new champion!
You heard right, PAC is the new Open the Dream Gate Champion. Part of me feels like it’s a bit too soon to win the belt since he just came back a couple of months ago but at the same time, they wanna capitalize on this while he’s still red hot since leaving WWE and it could potentially open new eyes to the product since most fans knew him as Neville. So in a business aspect, it’s a good idea and hopefully, it can lead to what the company is looking for. Let’s see how things turn out.
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a half
Overall: Aside from the two singles matches being the highlight of the show, nothing else really stood out with the multi-man tag matches throughout the night. U-T and Shun did great work together and PAC had a much better match than he did with Flamita and we got a new champion out of it to bring in a new era for Dragon Gate.
Favorite Match: Masato Yoshino vs. PAC
Least Favorite Match: Dragon Dia & Tribe Vanguard (BxB Hulk, Kagetora & YAMATO) vs. Don Fujii, Gamma, Ryo Saito & Super Shisa
Mitchell’s WWE Mixed Match Challenge 2 Results & Report! (12/11/18)
The Mixed Match Challenge is almost done, but there’s been a last-minute substitution! Apollo Crews replaces Finn Balor, can he help Bayley make it to TLC?
- Jinder Mahal & Alicia w/ The Singh Brothers VS Apollo Crews & Bayley; Mahal & Alicia win and advance to the Finals at TLC.
- The Miz & Asuka VS R-Truth & Carmella; Truth & Carmella win and advance to the Finals at TLC.
PLAY BY PLAY
It’s time for the Mixed Match Challenge Semifinals!
The final four teams will be cut down to just two tonight! The Season One champions are still in the running, but they’ve had a rough go of it this year. The Miz and Asuka lost to the #ExtremeFlair after Jeff Hardy stepped in for AJ Styles. However, not even the top seed still stands as the #FABULOUSTruth pulled off the biggest upset to date! Can Truth & Carmella pull off another upset against a tense and dysfunctional Team AWESKA?
As for the Raw Block, #Mahalicia is the only team standing with its original members! Of course, Jinder Mahal and Alicia Fox have yet to truly see eye to eye despite making it back from the bottom of the block. That said, Finn Balor must step down from the Mixed Match Challenge because of the beating Drew McIntyre gave him on Raw a week ago. In his place now stands Apollo Crews, who wants to finally make his mark on the main roster! Can this new Team A’n’B go all the way to TLC?
Backstage with Bayley & Apollo Crews.
New partners start big with a semifinals match, but the dynamic doesn’t change for Bayley. These two are more prepared than ever, and they’ll be so close to being the #30 spots in their respective Royal Rumbles! But the Singh Brothers come in to get them to slow down. No one cares about where they “think” they’re going, because they’re going home! The Maharrrrraja and Foxy will be Too Sweet. No, better: they can hug it out! Bayley boots the Bollywood Boys out, and says she and Apollo will worry about vacation destinations after the match.
Backstage interview with R-Truth & Carmella!
The FABULOUS Truth is ecstatic for tonight. They had a rough start but are on a roll. They’ll be up against the MMC Champions. Miz & Asuka were worried about every team but Truth & Carmella. Well Miz has run his mouth a long time, and Truth knows that from teaming with Miz back in the day. Truth knows for a fact Asuka carries that team. As for tonight, Mella & Truth will carry SmackDown’s flag all the way to TLC. They vow to win, and that’s the truth. Also, Miz said something about shoes? Check these! Carmella’s kicks are F A B U L O U A S! That’s not how you spell fabulous. That aside, let’s move on to choosing a vacation site. Truth likes the idea of Athens. Greece? Georgia? No, Ohio. Well on to match preparations!
Jinder Mahal & Alicia w/ The Singh Brothers VS Apollo Crews & Bayley!
Team A’n’B already meshed well together when they and The Boss, Sasha Banks, took it to #Mahalicia on Raw. However, Sasha Banks won’t be present to help cancel out Samir & Sunil, will #HugNation be able to overcome Shanti and head to TLC?
Bayley and Apollo talk on the way out, and it’s decided: once they win that vacation, they’ll go to Jamaica. “This one’s for Finn!” The teams then sort out, and the men begin. Apollo circles with Mahal and they tie up. Mahal gets a headlock and the Singhs already celebrate. Apollo powers out but Mahal runs him over with a shoulder. Mahal runs but Apollo gets up, only for Mahal to whip him. Apollo leaps over for the sunset flip, TWO! Backslide, TWO! Apollo rolls Mahal up, TWO! Mahal scrambles away and Alicia tags in. Mahal claims he had this, but Alicia doesn’t care. Vegas fires up for Bayley as she circles with Alicia. Bayley rolls Alicia, TWO! She tries again, ONE! A third time, TWO!
Alicia wants a breather and she bails out of the ring. She reprimands the Singhs and Mahal for not helping out. Alicia wants that 30th spot and vacation, but the Singhs and Mahal remind her she needs to win first. Alicia gets back in the ring, but Bayley gets her with a drop toehold! Bayley wants to put on an abdominal stretch, but Alicia resists. They go around and Bayley gets a facelock. The Singhs say that’s cheating, but Alicia drives Bayley into a corner. Alicia throws forearms then wrenches the arm. She kicks Bayley around then reels her in. Bayley reverses to a cradle, TWO! Bayley gets to a corner and flapjacks Alicia on the buckles! The Singhs coach Alicia up and she tags to Mahal!
Apollo comes in, but Mahal wants him to take it easy. Mahal kicks but Apollo blocks to counter punch. Apollo whips but Mahal hits a body shot. Mahal stomps a mudhole into Apollo, then whips him corner to corner. Apollo goes up and over and handsprings, then leaps over Mahal to hip toss him down. Fans fire up with Apollo and Apollo back flips. He lansd on his feet but walks into a hotshot and big knee! Cover, TWO! Mahal keeps his cool as he drives an elbow into Apollo’s head. He whips Apollo corner to corner hard and Apollo hits the mat. Mahal stomps away but Bayley keeps the Singhs back. Mahal drops knees then grinds Apollo down. The ref counts and Mahal stops at 4. Mahal brings Apollo up in a half nelson chinbar.
Apollo endures as fans rally up, and Apollo fights out. Mahal shoves Apollo and runs him over with an elbow! Cover, TWO! Mahal puts Apollo back in the half nelson, but Apollo endures. Fans rally up and Apollo fights back. Mahal shoves but Apollo kicks back. Apollo runs but into a clobbering clothesline! Mahal pulls back with a camel clutch. Fans rally again but Mahal wrangles Apollo back down. Mahal wrenches back on the chinlock, but Apollo endures. Fans rally up and Apollo gets moving. Apollo arm-drags out and enziguris Mahal down! Both men crawl for their corners, hot tag to Bayley!
Alicia comes in but Bayley rallies! Bayley puts Alicia in a corner for the back elbow, and corner punches! She gets 8, but Alicia slips out. Bayley jumps over to hit a big back suplex! Bayley runs in for the big knee, but Alicia gets to the apron. Alicia bumps Bayley off buckles, but Bayley hotshots her back! Bayley2Belly! Cover, but the Singhs drag Alicia out! The referee reprimands them but Apollo wipes them out with flying clotheslines! Apollo then leaps up again, asai moonsault takes them out again! He feeds Samir to Bayley2Belly! Then the same for Sunil! Bayley fires up but Mahal boots Apollo down! Bayley DIVES on Mahal! She puts Alicia back in, but walks into a boot!! Cover, Mahalicia wins!!
Winners: Jinder Mahal & Alicia Fox, Alicia pinning; advance to the MMC Finals at TLC
The dysfunctional duo makes it work! Granted, they succeeded against teams that had substitute members, such as how Curt Hakwins stepped in for Braun Strowman last week. But a win is a win, and now Mahalicia will represent Raw in the Finals! Who will they face in their shot at the 30th spots and the all-expenses-paid vacation?
Backstage interview with Mahalicia.
Did they ever think this day would come? Of course they did! Mahal meditated and visualized, and he sees himself, Alicia, and the Singhs on the beach. Alicia agrees with winning, but NOT with letting the Singhs joining them. They’re successful because SHE is the Captain! She’s driving this ship into Port Victory, without them! But Asuka comes over, laughing at how Mahalicia thinks they’re gonna win. It doesn’t matter what happened on tonight’s SmackDown, Asuka says she’s gonna win, because her match is next!
The Miz & Asuka VS R-Truth & Carmella!
The Season One champions are on the rocks right now as The Empress doesn’t appreciate The A-Lister trying to take credit for her work. Meanwhile, the fourth seed FABULOUS Truth have put in the work to make it back up from the bottom. Will we see another historic upset from Truth and the Princess of Staten Island?
“Las Vegas, make some noise! What’s up!?” The Miz and Asuka aren’t impressed, and aren’t in the mood for that Dance Break the fans are cheering for. The teams sort out and both Miz and Asuka say “I’ve got this.” Fans are on Asuka’s side. Miz concedes, and Asuka starts with Carmella. But then Miz calls over to tag in. Asuka refuses, because she’s got it. But then she chops him, which counts for a tag! Truth comes in and Asuka is annoyed. Truth rolls Miz up! TWO, but Truth stays on Miz. Miz powers out but Truth runs him over. Truth does his bunny hop dance, then things speed up. Truth holds ropes to do the rest of his dance. Miz runs in but Truth dodges to tilt-o-whirl Miz to a corner. Truth runs in to haymaker Miz. The ref backs Truth up and Miz kicks low.
Miz bumps Truth off buckles, then stomps him. Miz whips corner to corner but Truth goes up and over to dab on ’em! This annoys Miz and he runs back in, but Truth does the splits to dodge, then hip tosses Miz down! Truth clotheslines Miz out, and Carmella comes in, for the DANCE BREAK~! Asuka is furious at Miz while Truth and Carmella floss and twerk. Carmella calls out Asuka, so Asuka shows off her moves on the apron. Miz is annoyed but Truth hip tosses Miz back in! Truth throws hands then climbs up for corner punches. He gets 8 before Miz pushes him away and boots Truth down. Miz chokes Truth on the ropes, then hits his straddle attack. Cover, TWO!
Miz keeps on Truth with a camel clutch but Carmella rallies the fans. Truth gets up and fights back. Miz pulls hair to throw Truth down and deny the tag. Miz stalks Truth, to boot him down! Cover, TWO! Truth survives and Miz argues with the ref. Miz hears the fans rally and say “We Want Asuka!” Miz ignores that but gets rocked by haymakers from Truth! Truth back suplexes but Miz lands out to kick low and hit the basement DDT! Cover, but Carmella breaks it! Carmella goes back to her corner, but then Miz mocks the moonwalk. It wasn’t very good, but Miz stomps Truth down. Miz brings Truth up and uses his It Kicks. Miz winds up but misses, Truth rolls him up! TWO, and Miz clobbers Truth with a clothesline!
Fans rally but Miz grins as he runs corner to corner at Truth. He hits the dropkick, then keeps going to hit another. Miz soaks up the heat before running back in, but Truth clobbers him! Both men are down but fans are fired up. Truth and Miz crawl, hot tag brings in the ladies! Carmella rallies with lariats and a kick. She brings Asuka over for a bump off her boot. Asuka’s down but she dodges the bronco buster to then lift Carmella in a waistlock. Carmella screams and shouts to be let down, so Asuka gently sets Carmella back on her feet. To then lift her back up! Carmella fights out but gets the pop-up knee! Asuka runs, sliding wizard! Cover, TWO!
Carmella survives and Asuka grows frustrated. Miz is also frustrated but Asuka stays on Carmella with knees. Carmella jawbreakers and shoves Asuka away, Miz tags in! Miz goes after Truth but Truth punches him away. Truth rallies with the Lie Detector elbow! Cover, but Asuka breaks it! Carmella throws Asuka into buckles, and tunes up the band. She aims at Miz, but Miz uses Asuka as a shield?! The FABULOUS Kick hits Asuka, then Miz shoves Truth into Carmella before rolling Truth up! TWO!! FABULOUS KICK, to Scissor Kick! Cover, TWO!? Miz lives?! Fans are stunned but loving this!
Asuka throws Carmella out, then Miz dumps Truth out. Miz and Asuka catch their breath, but Asuka locks eyes with Miz. She knows what Miz just did, and he tries to say it wasn’t him. Asuka doesn’t believe Miz, she knows what she saw. Miz is afraid of what she’ll do, and says that they’re still a team. They can still win this together! Okay? No! Asuka fires off on Miz!! Buzzsaw! Miz is rocked, and Asuka ditches him! Truth gives Miz an Unprettier! Cover, Fabulous Truth win!!
Winners: R-Truth & Carmella, Truth pinning; advance to the MMC Finals at TLC
The Season One Champions are no longer in the tournament! The A-Lister made a major mistake thinking he could manipulate the Empress of Tomorrow, and now the FABULOUS Truth capitalize! It will be Truth & Carmella VS Mahal & Alicia at TLC, who wins to become the new Mixed Match Challenge Champions?
Last episode, last time for one of these. Admittedly, we all should’ve known, me especially, that this was not going to end with an amazing match up of top stars in the Finals. The big names like Finn Balor, Braun Strowman, Charlotte Flair, AJ Styles, etc were only in this second MMC to hook fans. WWE needs people to use Facebook Watch because of the deal they made, so that’s why we got great combinations to start. But naturally, it was all bait and switch, considering how those same big names would inevitably end up in more important stories like the titles and grudges we’re getting at TLC. Rest in peace, my dream of Bullet Club leaders and NXT Four Horsewomen members all in one match.
As for the bracket we did get, I knew it was going to end up this way. I thought Apollo was going to be Bayley’s second chance at that 30th spot after Finn had to step down for the sake of his match against Drew McIntyre. Then San Jose could cheer on their hometown girl as she goes against SmackDown’s finalist. However, Mahalicia still wins so that they are the Heels of the Finals. And while I knew Truth & Carmella were going to go in once Asuka ended up in the TLC Triple Threat, I really enjoy how they wrote it for the match. It was only a matter of time before Asuka got fed up with Miz’s ego, and this was the breaking point. Truth and Carmella will certainly benefit the most from being the 30th entrants, even if they aren’t destined to win the Rumbles.