With just weeks before his NXT Championship match at TakeOver: WarGames II, can Velveteen Dream stay strong in a match with LARS SULLIVAN?
- Heavy Machinery VS The Forgotten Sons; Heavy Machinery wins.
- Dakota Kai VS Taynara Conti; Kai wins.
- Velveteen Dream VS Lars Sullivan; wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Heavy Machinery VS The Forgotten Sons!
Just because the NXT Tag Team Championships aren’t on the line at TakeOver: WarGames II doesn’t mean the race to the top ends. Tucker Knight & Otis Dozovic want another shot, as their first try a year ago against the Authors of Pain didn’t go their way. However, so does Wesley Black, who was champion alongside current Cruiserweight Champion, Buddy Murphy. Steve Cutler just wants his first taste, so he and Blake will #DoUntoOthers what they have to in order to win! Will they overcome the power of #SteaksAndWeights? Or are Tucky & Dozer comiiiin’ for gold?
The teams sort out, and Cutler starts against Knight. The two circle and tie up. Knight powers Cutler back but Cutler turns it around. Cutler shoves Knight but Knight barrels him over! Knight throws Cutler around to Dozer’s delight, but they get to ropes. Cutler elbows out of the break, but Knight gets him again. Cutler gets an arm and Blake tags in. Blake takes the arm and yanks it, then tags to Cutler. Cutler headbutts the arm, then tags back to Blake. Blake hops up for a flying knee! Knight tries to whip Blake off but Blake holds on tight. Blake grinds his forearm into the shoulder as he wrenches Knight’s arm. Fans rally and Knight fights back. Cutler tags in and the Sons double whip. Knight dodges to then double crossbody!
Tag to Dozer, and both Heavy Machinery men scoop up a Son. They sandwich Cutler and Blake together before throwing them down! Dozer gives Cutler an extra spin, then dumps him on Blake. Dozer runs in for a big corner splash, then he pumps it up. Fans know what’s coming here, and fire up with him. Dozer hits the caterpillar and elbow drop! Cutler flounders as Dozer fires up more. Dozer carries Cutler but Blake saves him. Dozer hits Blake but Cutler drops Dozer with a complete shot! Tag to Blake and he stomps away on Dozer. Blake drops an elbow then a springboard knee! Cover, TWO! Dozer gets up but Blake is on him. Dozer hits back and shoves Blake away. Blake runs and manages to clobber Dozer off his feet!
Blake drags Dozer over, tags in Cutler, and then he holds Dozer down for Cutler to stomp away. Cutler tweaks Dozer’s arm then covers, TWO! Cutler puts Dozer on the ropes to choke him. The ref counts and Cutler backs off at 3. Cutler comes back and tags Blake. He drags Dozer down on the apron, and Blake drops a leg on the left arm! Blake covers, TWO! But into an armbar on that bad arm! Dozer resists and rolls, but Blake holds on. Blake shifts it to a triangle, and Dozer can’t deadlift. Knight coaches Dozer on and he gets a second wind, to deadlift Blake for a bomb! Both men are down, but Blake tags in Cutler. Cutler goes after Knight but misses, so he gives Dozer a DDT! But Dozer uses that momentum to get a tag to Tucker!
Knight rallies on Cutler, big bicycle boot! Blake comes in but gets a hip toss, then a clothesline that sends him out. Cutler collides with Knight and Knight puts him in a corner for body shots! Knight stomps a mudhole into Cutler, then fires up. Knight runs back in for a corner splash, then keeps moving, but Cutler baits him tot he apron. Cutler staggers but Knight is up, top rope senton! Cover, TWO!! Knight crawls after Cutler and whips. Cutler holds on and Blake tags in. Cutler backstabs Knight and holds him over his ropes, for Blake’s elbow drop! Blake covers with a jackknife, TWO!! Knight survives but Blake is still on him. Blake gets him on the top rope, then tags Cutler back in.
The Sons coordinate as Cutler climbs to join Knight and Blake takes another corner. SUPERPLEX, to SPLASH! Cover, but Dozer breaks it outta nowhere! Fans fire up but in comse Blake. Dozer throws him back out, but then Cutler throws Dozer out. Cutler turns around to go after Knight, but gets a small package! TWO, Knight backslides, TWO! Cutler swings but Knight ducks. Knight swings but Cutler ducks, only to get clobbered from the other side! Knight fires up and tags in Dozer. Heavy Machinery coordinate, but Blake dumps Knight out! Cutler hits Dozer with a backstabber, then tags Blake. Blake brings Dozer around as Cutler climbs, but Knight pops up to shove him down! Cutler falls on Jaxson Ryker! Dozer shoves Blake, pop-up powerslam!! Cover, Heavy Machinery wins!!
Winners: Heavy Machinery, Otis Dozovic by pinfall
A massive victory for the literally bigger team! Can they continue to steamroll their way up the rankings and challenge the champions in the near future?
NXT Media catches up with Candice LeRae.
Reporters ask Mrs. Wrestling about Johnny Wrestling, and how he hasn’t reappeared since revealing he attacked Aleister Black months ago. Her response is that she’s not here to be exploited. Everything going on with Mr. & Mrs. Wrestling is personal, and Candice has her own questions. For Nikki Cross. Has Nikki answered those questions? No, she just laughed and walked away. What Candice is here for is to ask William Regal for a match with Nikki so they can settle this. Nikki will have no choice but to face Candice, and Candice promises Nikki won’t be laughing afterward. Will Regal grant Candice the match she wants?
Backstage interview with Shayna Baszler and the Horsewomen.
The Queen of Spades doesn’t have all day, so Cathy Kelly asks what Baszler thinks about Kairi Sane using her rematch clause. “How many times am I gonna have to beat down Kairi Sane before you people start to understand how insignificant she is?” The real headline here is that Shayne’s the first-ever two-time NXT Women’s Champion. William Regal walks in, and both Jessamyn Duke and Marina Shafir are ready to fight. Shayna calms them down, and Regal says there is something “insignificant” happening. As Cathy brought up, Kairi Sane has a rematch clause, and is using it. It’s only the right thing to do to have it happen at TakeOver: WarGames II.
But considering the two superstars’ “storied past”, it will be Best 2 Out of 3 Falls. Shayna shoos Cathy Kelly while Jessamyn and Marina assure Shayna she can still win. Will Shayna be able to defeat Kairi not just once but twice in the same night? Or will the Pirate Princess take back her booty?
Dakota Kai VS Taynara Conti!
The Captain of Team Kick is back from the UK, and is invigorated after watching WWE Evolution. Meanwhile, the One True Blackbelt Judoka of NXT doesn’t care about all that excitement, she just wants to prove she’s the best. Who will make major moves in the Women’s Division of NXT USA?
The bell rings and the two circle. They tie up and Taynara gets the headlock. She grinds Dakota’s head then gets the headlock takeover, but Dakota rolls through to get a wristlock! Taynara gets up and pulls Dakota’s hair to throw her down. She shouts “Are you crazy?!” at Dakota, then kicks, but Dakota catches it from behind! Dakota stands up and Taynara wants her to forgive her. Taynara swings a punch but Dakota uses that to arm-drag Taynara. Things speed up and Dakota dropkicks Taynara down! Cover, ONE, but Dakota keeps on her with a whip. Taynara reverses but Dakota goes up and over. Taynara follows Dakota to the other corner, but Dakota goes up and over again to roll Taynara up! TWO, but Dakota has the arm.
Taynara grits her teeth as she endures. She spins around and throws Dakota at a corner. Dakota goes up again but gets caught with a knee! Taynara kicks away on Dakota now, all the way to another corner. Taynara drags Dakota out, and kicks the arm! That’s the bad arm from when Shayna stomped it months ago. Taynara covers, ONE, but Taynara keeps her cool. Taynara toys with Dakota now, but fans rally up. Dakota stands, Taynara whips her at a corner, then gets her with a judo throw on the rebound. Taynara brings Dakota up by her arms, then whips her in again. She throws Dakota again, then rolls to boot Dakota in the face! Cover, TWO! She tries again, ONE! Taynara is furious, but she goes after Dakota’s bad arm.
Fans rally as Dakota endures the top keylock. Taynara thrashes Dakota around, but Dakota refuses to give in. Fans continue to rally and Dakota fights her way up. Taynara throws her to a corner, then throws in forearms. She wraps the arm around the rope and pulls. Dakota kicks Taynara away, then dodges. Taynara hits buckles, then turns around into Dakota’s scorpion kick! Taynara flounders while Dakota clutches her bad arm. Dakota gets up and roundhouses Taynara off her feet, then roundhouses again. She bicycle boots Taynara to a corner, then goes side to side for the wash! But Dakota isn’t done yet, she goes Around the World! Dakota dumps Taynara out, for the sunset back stabber! AKA the Kai-ropractor! Cover, Dakota wins!
Winner: Dakota Kai, by pinfall
The Captain conquers Conti, and keeps going strong in NXT prime! Can Dakota find a way to kick it up a notch and be a champion in two Women’s Divisions?
Backstage interview with Mia Yim.
The Blasian Baddie may not have won the Mae Young Classic, but she earned a spot on NXT! How has it been at Full Sail so far? “It’s literally living the dream!” She trains at the Performance Center and works alongside the best of the best both in and out of a ring. However, Bianca Belair walks in to give Mia a blatant shoulder bump. Is there a problem? Bianca asks why. Why is Mia being interviewed when Bianca has been here two years working her butt off? Does Mia think she’s just gonna walk in her and be handed opportunities? No. Talk about how Bianca is Un. De. Fea. Ted. And still hasn’t gotten a title shot! So Mia can go back to wherever she came from.
Mia doesn’t get Bianca hating on her out of nowhere, but she does know the EST hasn’t beaten the HBIC: the Head Baddie In Charge. Bianca laughs at that catchphrase, but will she be laughing when these two meet in the ring?
NXT shares exclusive backstage footage after Matt Riddle’s successful debut.
Fellow first-year NXT star Keith Lee talked with him about his debut win. How does it feel? Bro, how do you think it feels? But then they come across Kassius Ohno. The Knockout Artist sarcastically greets “Regal’s shiny new toys” and sarcastically welcomes them to NXT. Great to see them here. Ohno likes shiny new toys. “They’re real fun to break.” Lee and Riddle don’t understand the attitude, but Ohno aside, both Lee and Riddle are enjoying their time in NXT. Who else will #BroLee make #BaskinTheirGlory?
WarGames returns again!
The Undisputed Era were very reluctant to be part of such a historic match’s return. At that time, they were only a three-man unit, and were up against SAnitY and the makeshift trio of The Authors of Pain, and Roderick Strong. Ironic in retrospect, the most barbaric match had all four members of Undisputed Era as we know now. “There are no winners in war, there are only losers and the Undisputed.” The Undisputed Era has done nothing but run wild and get away with it. They survived WarGames, and then grabbed up gold since then. Strong would betray Pete Dunne to join his new team, and they have relished in their success. But it was only a matter of time before they got in over their heads.
The war came to NXT the moment Hanson & Rowe appeared! The War Raiders dominated the Undisputed Era and every other team since. Ricochet took the North American Championship from Cole, and Pete Dunne has come back for revenge. “This time, there’s no numbers game.” The Undisputed Era is at 100%, but that doesn’t scare their opponents one bit. History repeats itself, “here we go again.” There’s nowhere to run, there’s nowhere to hide, “it’s steel and it’s pain.” Will the Undisputed Era finally be humbled? Or will they once again #ShockTheSystem?
Johnny Gargano sends a video message.
“Why, Johnny, Why?” That’s the question everyone’s been asking. Johnny’s always been very open and honest. The fans ask, he will tell. Aleister Black talked of a path he is on. Gargano’s on a path, too. Does this area look familiar? This was the path the night the attack happened. That same path leads Gargano to Tommaso Ciampa. That same path leads Gargano to righting a wrong and fulfilling a promise as the one to beat Ciampa for the NXT Championship. Aleister was just in the way. Collateral damage. Nothing personal. Gargano thought Aleister would appreciate that, seeing as how Aleister walked around like he owns the place. Just handing out Black Mass kicks, no one bats an eye.
But talking about no man is every truly good or evil, Aleister is confused. Gargano knows who he is, he’s the hero of this story. Gargano does one little thing that people considered evil, and everyone flips out! Don’t worry, Gargano is still the same Gargano he’s always been. He still fights for what’s right. But he’s learned that sometimes you gotta fight dirty. That’s why he did what he did. Aleister wants to kick Gargano’s face off now, and that’s fine. Gargano might even deserve that. But after everything he’s been through, he’s not afraid. Gargano lives in a dark place, he’s not afraid of the dark anymore. “Actually, I’m kinda starting to like it.”
Gargano makes sure everyone gets a good look at the same spot he left Aleister down. At WarGames, Gargano leaves Aleister down again. Will Johnny Wrestling go past a point of no return? Or is the end drawing near?
William Regal has a major WarGames announcement!
Next week will pit two members from the WarGames match, and the winner of that match gains the advantage for their team come that match itself. Who will step up for the Undisputed Era and the #OneAndOnlyBruiserRaiders?
Velveteen Dream VS Lars Sullivan!
The Patrick Clark Experience was granted a title match with the NXT Champion, Tommaso Ciampa, at WarGames II. However, this only angered The Leviathan, and now he wants to keep Dream from ever making it to Los Angeles. Will Dream survive the Mile High Monster? Or will he suffer a Freak Accident?
The bell rings and Dream goes right at Lars! He has Lars in a corner and throws hands, but Lars powers Dream to the opposite corner! Lars rams his shoulder in, then tosses Dream out of the atomic drop! Dream writhes while Lars looms over him. Lars picks Dream up for a powerbomb lift but Dream fights out. Dream throws forearms but Lars shoves him back. Lars runs into a boot, Dream runs to blast Lars out of the ring! Fans fire up and Dream slingshots out! He takes Lars down but he rains lefts and rights down. Lars gets up but Dream shoves him into steel steps! Dream bangs Lars’ head off the steels, then gets in the ring at 6. Dream wants the ref to stop counting, which surprises the ref. Lars gets up and drags Dream out! Lars clamps a hand on, but Dream rakes the eyes!
The ref reprimands Dream, but Lars lifts Dream to toss him at the apron! Dream writhes again as the count rises. Lars puts Dream in at 7, then runs in at the corner for a big splash! Lars clubs Dream in the chest and Dream slumps onto the ropes. Fans rally up for Dream but Lars drags him up and back into the corner. Lars knees low, then tosses Dream across the ring! Dream writhes while Lars roars. Lars drags Dream up and hooks the face, to then bounce Dream’s face off the mat. Lars drags Dream up to clobber him back down! Then he clamps a hand on Dream’s shoulder, and squeezes tight. Dream endures the nerve hold as fans rally up. Dream fights his way up, but Lars shoves him again.
Lars wants a back drop but Dream sunset flips through. Lars stays standing, to pick Dream right up! And he flips Dream with a clubbing forearm! Cover, TWO! Dream barely survives, but Lars won’t let up. Lars drags Dream around into a half camel clutch. Dream endures being bent back as fans rally up again. Dream gets up, but Lars whips him to a corner, sending him tumbling out! Lars laughs as Dream hits the ground. Lars declares himself the winner already as the count climbs. Dream gets up at 6, and in at 7. Lars is right on him with a boot across the back. Lars lets up at 4, and he stalks Dream as Dream rolls around. The clamp is back on the nerve hold, but fans rally again for Dream. Dream looks to fade, but he won’t give up.
Fans still chant for Dream, and he gets a second wind! Dream is up, and jawbreakers Lars back! Lars runs in, blocks the boot but not the haymakers. Dream gives a big uppercut, but Lars shoves him. Dream boots Lars, then boots him again. He keeps moving, and turns Lars’ flapjack into a dropkick! Lars is down and Dream heads up top! Dream aims, missile dropkick! Cover, TWO! And still with power! Dream gets up and goes after Lars for a fireman’s carry. Somehow Dream gets Lars up, but he can’t keep him there. Lars gets Dream up, pop-up Oklahoma slam! Cover, TWO!! Dream still lives! Lars is furious, and he hurries up top. Dream SUPERKICKS Lars! Then he climbs up to join Lars, but Lars fights him off. Lars shoves Dream down, adjusts, and leaps! The headbutt belly flops! Both men are down but fans fire up.
Dream stands first but Lars follows. Lars runs in but gets post! Dream gets the fireman’s carry, Dream Valley Driver!! Dream hurries up top as fans are thunderous. But here comes Ciampa! So Dream leaps onto him! But then Dream gets in to get a FREAK ACCIDENT! Cover, Lars wins!
Winner: Lars Sullivan, by pinfall
The Psycho Killer made sure his challenger lost before facing him at WarGames II. However, the Leviathan may actually have a case for his shot at the title. Will this be Lars’ way back in?
As for Dream, Ciampa enters the ring with an evil grin. Ciampa attacks Dream to add insult to injury! “I’m the champ! You don’t share my spotlight! You don’t share my main event!” Ciampa keeps hitting Dream, but Dream actually gets a shot in! Ciampa makes him pay for it with stomps and a rain of rights. Fans are on Dream’s side, but Ciampa puts the belt in place. Ciampa double underhooks, but Dream slips out to SUPERKICK! And Sidewinder DDT on the belt! Ciampa’s evil scheme backfired and now Dream has him down! Dream hurries up top as Ciampa writhes. The referees stop him from leaping, there will be no Purple Rain tonight.
Fans boo and jeer the refs, saying “Let Them Fight!” Dream blasts pasts the officials, and hits the Purple Rain Maker!! And holds up the belt! Is this a vision of the future? Or will the Experience experience disappointment at the hands of the Blackheart?
A great NXT tonight and it’s not even the go-home for TakeOver yet. You know NXT is better than Raw when their mid-card tag teams are putting on better matches than the Raw Tag Team Championship match. While Seth Rollins looked great even in a loss to the Authors of Pain, both Heavy Machinery and The Forgotten Sons looked great to make this match great. Also, great to hear we are getting Shayna VS Kairi 5, in 2 outta 3 Falls, that could steal the show on a card with WarGames on it. Given that it’ll be best two outta three, either woman could win, but it’d be pretty great if Kairi won to keep this feud going. Especially since I’m hoping that Meiko Satomura stays around long enough for Six Woman Tag: Joshi Strong Style VS The Horsewomen.
Dakota VS Taynara was great, both women came out strong, and I’m really surprised Dakota won. I’d assume WWE/HHH is high on Dakota if she’s in both NXT US and NXT UK, and it really would be quite the accomplishment if she were to become the first dual champion in NXT history. The only reason that might not happen for awhile is because of strong stars like Shayna and Kairi in US and Toni Storm in UK. Bianca VS Mia Yim next week probably goes Bianca’s way, but I bet she’ll have to use sneakier tactics to keep her Un-De-Fea-Ted streak alive, just to give this story something special for it to continue.
Gargano’s promo was perfect for his character development. He’s not just NXT’s Venom but NXT’s Joker now with that partial reference to Joker’s most meme’d line. I now imagine Aleister as Batman, and Candice as Harley Quinn. Dream’s shout out to the late Hugh Hefner in his entrance gear was great. Ciampa screwing Dream over made sense, but it was also great that Dream stood tall. Their match really could go either way, but how amazing would it be if Dream benefits from the entire story of Gargano’s turn? I think fans would definitely pop huge for Dream being NXT Champion after all the hard work Patrick Clark has put in.
My Score: 8.6/10
WWE 24/7 Championship Results & Report! (7/20/19)
Stand back! There’s a Comic-Con coming through!
The WWE 24/7 Championship makes an SDCC debut!
As superheroes, super villains and super fans all converge in San Diego, watch as WWE icons collide! Who gets out of the convention with the title?
- WWE 24/7 Championship: R-Truth VS The Hurricane VS Drake Maverick; Truth wins and retains the WWE 24/7 Championship.
PLAY BY PLAY
WWE 24/7 Champion, R-Truth, appears for an interview!
What’s up, San Diego and IGN!? Truth sits with hosts Max Scoville and Sydnee Goodman and has been having a blast. he’s seen everything and everybody, but he just hopes no one recognized him. Truth being the 24/7 Champion, he had to stay incognito. Someone, anyone, everyone, they could take this title because it is defended at all times of the day. That is why it is the “48/7 7-11 TV” Championship. How has Truth been holding up? Well he can’t sleep, not even for a nap. He’s fought over this belt on a golf course, a tarmac, in a plane, and ruined one man’s wedding AND honeymoon. But don’t worry, Drake Maverick’s not constipated.
And now at SDCC, Truth has been able to slip through as a penguin! Pengi the penguin, noot noot! He got to shake hands and hang out with Darth Vader. Truth loves SDCC, it’s the bomb. But what else has Truth done while here? Chewbacca stared him down, but then Pikachu came along. The weather’s been a bit iffy, though. But wait! Is that…?! Yes! It is THE Hurricane!! Truth mentioned weather, so stand back, because there’s a hurricane coming through! Truth thinks this is a really great cosplay, but he’s a bit thick around the waist. Oh wow, what a great referee cosplay! He looks just like John Combs! But he’s blonde. No, wait, that’s… Nevermind. ROLL UP! TWO, but Hurricane runs away before Truth can retaliate. Because here comes Rockstar Banana, Drake Maverick! Roll up, TWO!!
Truth bails out before Maverick can attack again. Maverick vents! Truth has ruined Maverick’s life! His wedding, his honey moon, and he’s yet to consummate the marriage! Maverick is getting sick and tired of this! And then he realizes he’s on camera. Maverick gets up and runs off, but into the cameras! The signal goes down, but is Maverick too down in the dumps to get back up?
This title continues to be amazing! I was actually shocked Truth didn’t lose the title here, but him retaining is actually even more surprising. Great to see Hurricane again, even if it’s just for the gag of, “Oh, it’s Comic-Con, cosplay is everywhere.” Maverick is slowly breaking, and I love that he tied in the banana costume from when he showed up at the WWE Mattel panel during SDCC. Can’t wait to see reference to this on Raw.
Andrew’s G1 Climax 29 Ratings & Analysis: Night 6 B Block
Juice Robinson, Tomohiro Ishii and Jon Moxley come in at the top of the standings. How do we see B Block take shape?
Juice Robinson, Tomohiro Ishii and Jon Moxley come in at the top of the standings. How do we see B Block take shape?
This whole day is based around two major things:
Will Jay White or Tetsuya Naito get a win?
Will Moxley or Ishii kill one another?
Let’s find out!
- Bad Luck Fale & Chase Owens vs Zack Sabre Jr & Yoshinobu Kanemaru: Fale wins via Grenade @4:50 – **
- Tomoaki Honma & Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Minoru Suzuki & Lance Archer: Archer wins via EBD Claw Hold @9:50 – **
- SANADA, EVIL & BUSHI vs KENTA, Kota Ibushi & Clark Connors: BUSHI wins via MX @9:02 – ** 1/2
- YOSHI-HASHI & Kazuchika Okada vs Will Ospreay & Toa Henare: YOSHI wins via Fisherman Buster @8:45 – ** 1/4
- B Block: Shingo Takagi vs Taichi: Takagi wins via Last of the Dragon @14:40 – ****
- B Block: Jeff Cobb vs Juice Robinson: Cobb wins via Tour of the Islands @13:20 – *** 1/2
- B Block: Toru Yano vs Jay White: Yano wins via Brass Knuckle Low Blow/Roll-Up @3:05 – ** 1/2
- B Block: Tetsuya Naito vs Hirooki Goto: Naito wins via Destino @16:00 – *** 3/4
- B Block: Jon Moxley vs Tomohiro Ishii: Moxley wins via Deathrider @20:35 – **** 1/2
Well Fale tried to outsmart the Rainmaker in his last G1 match, and that didn’t go too well. So Sabre is being a whiny child, tried to step to Fale and for the most part, got brushed off. Fale isn’t really in a position to eat another loss, but it’s unusual for Sabre to be doing so poorly. I’m curious if Sabre continues this slide until maybe TAKA Michinoku returns to be his hype man, or Sabre gets off the schneid.
People, everybody dies. You know that, Lance knows that, Honma knows that…Kairi Sane knows that. This didn’t really add much to things except the undercurrent of a quiet Minoru Suzuki is scary for the whole world. Also – Everybody Dies!
Now that SANADA and EVIL have had their match, there is some symbiosis back on the LIJ undercards. KENTA and Kota teaming together was a cute call back, but nothing of heavy merit came from this match. BUSHI continues to rack up positive momentum during these tags, Clark Connors is impressive for an LA Dojo Young Lion. So decent match, but aside from EVIL and KENTA brawling after the match and SANADA and Ibushi having a rather civil fan support battle, nothing too important for the impending matches.
Okada and Ospreay did have the crowd hot, but aside from a small flourish, this was mostly YOSHI and Henare. Surprisingly, YOSHI-HASHI has put together a few pinfalls in the tag matches, so that tends to actually play a role in the second half story telling. Ospreay may be on his way to a big upset since even if Okada seems to be positioned to win A Block, he won’t make it through unscathed.
Now this was a fun match. It was a continuation of the Suzuki-Gun/LIJ drama, but Taichi has his own issues. Shingo is fighting as a Junior Heavyweight and Taichi moved up to Heavyweight last year, but was overlooked for the G1. So the fact that Shingo asks and gets in, yet Taichi moves up and was ignored has to bother him. With all of these little things eating through, Taichi brought out the Dangerous T that many of us have grown to love. Sure there was a brief moment of shenanigans with lovely Miho and the microphone stand, but 90% of the match was on the up and up. Pumping Bomber versus Axe Bomber was great, the callbacks to both of their mentors was wonderful and just generally speaking, when the Holy Emperor tries, those are great matches. Shingo getting the win won’t sit well with Taichi, but we’ve got plenty more time to see how this all falls.
Juice starts off the match in a 3 way tie for first, but Cobb really needs a win to legitimize his tournament. Being undefeated in ROH for about a year, as well as all his other accolades, he needs to stop losing. Cobb showed a little more fire than usual in this match and took it to Juice. Juice has been in hard hitting affairs all tournament and it looks like Juice might’ve finally hit the wall. Should be interesting to see if Juice flounders from here or if he recovers.
Well the Chaos revenge tour has another stop with Toru Yano and Jay White. Jay has not gotten off to a good start and it’s all his past decisions coming to bite him. This match…would be no different. Yano takes advantage of Gedo getting involved. Between Barbara Jean the turnbuckle pad and the brass knuckles from Gedo, Jay White’s nuts didn’t stand a chance. So Yano runs away with 2 more points and Jay’s pride…and other things…are a bit sore.
Goto started off the tournament looking like a new man, Naito has also looked different, but for different reasons. Naito sitting in the basement with zero points and Goto with the renewed sense of purpose makes for an odd dynamic. This match is one of their usual ones, where it’s quick bursts, hard hitting and a few solid false finishes. However, at multiple points Naito’s usual tranquilo is shaken and you can see him show levels of concern. Goto being the one with the power in the match, makes for some unique interactions. Naito does pull off the win, but it’s not for Goto’s lack of trying and kicking out of one running Destino. Naito finally gets some points, but it’s nothing near dominant enough to breathe a sigh of relief.
Moxley versus Ishii was the insane hard hitting match we expected. Ishii even flew. He hit a splash on Moxley through a table. The Stone Pitbull flew. Yes I realize there is a callback to Masato Tanaka in that move, but you don’t understand, Ishii flew. Anyway, the beauty of Red Shoes as a referee is he understands each wrestlers personality, so he gives them a little more leash to do what they like to do. Moxley used weapons, Ishii egged it on, there were huge strikes, Ishii’s torpedo style rising headbutts and just good violence. This was a bar fight and no one was upset. Moxley getting the win was a little surprising since most of us assume he won’t be available for many if any later dates once AEW TV starts up. This was just a nice change of pace for the usual New Japan and/or Strong Style match.
Overall Score: 7.75/10
With a great Taichi match and Moxley changing the pace, this show was definitely something to behold. Jay White’s continued spiral is more amusing than Sabre’s since this seems like retribution where Sabre is just a punk bitch when he loses. Even with an uneventful undercard, the main Block matches kept everything moving upward and onward.
With Moxley as the sole 3-0, who unseats the Death Rider?
B Block Standings:
- Jon Moxley – 3-0 (6 Points)
- Toru Yano – 2-1 (4 Points)
- Tomohiro Ishii – 2-1 (4 Points)
- Juice Robinson – 2-1 (4 Points)
- Shingo Takagi – 2-1 (4 Points)
- Jeff Cobb – 1-2 (2 Points)
- Tetsuya Naito – 1-2 (2 Points)
- Hirooki Goto – 1-2 (2 Points)
- Taichi – 1-2 (2 Points)
- Jay White – 0-3 (0 Points)