NJPW Power Struggle concludes with Chris Jericho defending his IWGP Intercontinental Championship against the King of Darkness, Los Ingobernables’ EVIL!
This coverage of Power Struggle will be as broadcast by AXS TV.
Gifs can be found at http://frentique.tumblr.com/
- Jay White & Bad Luck Fale w/ Gedo VS Kazuchika Okada & Trent Barreta; Okada & Barreta win.
- The Golden Lovers VS Hiroshi Tanahashi & David Finlay; The Golden Lovers win.
- IWGP Intercontinental Championship: Chris Jericho VS Evil; Jericho wins and retains the IWGP Intercontinental Championship.
PLAY BY PLAY
NJPW and AXS set the scene!
Y2J took the IWGP Intercontinental Championship from Tetsuya Naito after a brutal attack, and then continued that brutality after the match! The King of Darkness rescued the leader of Los Ingobernables de Japon, and now looks to take the title from Chris Jericho. Jericho didn’t appreciate Evil interfering in his business, and attacked Evil at the King of Pro-Wrestling event. Jericho vows to finish this, with the title on the line! Will the Walls of Jericho crumble when Darkness Falls? Or is the Greatest of All Time at What He Does going to prove just that to conclude Power Struggle 2018?
Jay White & Bad Luck Fale w/ Gedo VS Kazuchika Okada & Trent Barreta!
The Switchblade attempted a mutiny of Chaos but failed to overthrow the Rainmaker, so he joined up with the Bullet Club Firing Squad instead. Now Okada and Chaos want payback, and look for it in this tag team match. Will Okada make White and Gedo pay for their betrayal? Or will he and Trent #BreathewiththeSwitchblade?
Before the bell rings, Okada rushes White! White bails out but Okada pursues with a slingshot plancha! Trent goes after Fale while Okada whips White into railing. The bell rings just so this match can happen. Fans move aside as Okada brings White past the railing. Okada bowls White into chairs then rocks him with European Uppercuts. Okada brings White back to ringside and throws White into the apron’s edge. Trent keeps the Underboss on the ropes in the ring with chops and haymakers. White hits Okada at the corner! White throws Okada into railing now! Fale throws Trent out while White returns the favor, bowling Okada through chairs! Fans are again around the action as White clubs Okada.
White brings Okada back around and whips, but Okada reverses to send White back into railing! Okada boots White up and White ends up across both blue and white railing. Okada drags him out, draping DDT to the floor! Trent keeps on Fale with a wrecking ball dropkick and Fale staggers. Fans fire up and Trent builds speed to DIVE! Direct hit takes Fale down! Trent comes back but Fale brings him up in a bearhug. Fale rams Trent into a post, then runs him over with a clothesline! Okada grinds a boot into White and a 20 count finally begins. The count reaches 7 but Fale puts Trent in the ring. Fale throws big hands and close-range clotheslines. He whips Trent corner to corner hard and Trent tumbles up and then back down. Fale squashes him in the corner! And the splash! Cover, TWO!!
Trent survives and fans fire up. Okada glares at Gedo, who begs for some mercy. Fale choke slams Trent and Okada goes to save Trent but Gedo anchors his feet! Fale brings Trent up but Trent slips through to a sunset flip! Trent & Okada win!!
Winners: Kazuchika Okada & Trent Barreta, Trent pinning
But Fale won’t let Trent enjoy it, as he stomps him out! White clobbers Okada and throws him into barriers. White keeps going but Okada hits back. They brawl but the Young Lions try to separate them. The Young Lions get knocked around and the brawl continues. White keeps on Okada but Okada hits him back! They both go into chairs, but Gedo gets involved. Gedo gets knocked away but White clobbers Okada again. Gedo wants White to retreat, but White goes right at Okada again! Okada almost gets White with a gut wrench but Gedo gets White away. Okada blasts his way through the Young Lions to again brawl with White! Gedo separates White once more and things finally settle down.
White gets a mic and dares Okada to a 1v1 match any time, anywhere, no one else around. Okada replies, “Let’s do this right now!” But White doesn’t accept that, and takes his anger out on Young Lions. When will White man up to face Okada like he says?
The Golden Lovers VS Hiroshi Tanahashi & David Finlay!
The Best Bout Machine and The Once in a Century Talent compete for THE IWGP Heavyweight Championship, as Hiroshi Tanahashi has the challenging rights contract he won in the G1 Climax. But before their Wrestle Kingdom 13 showdown, we get a sampler as they join forces with friends for a tag team battle! Will Kenny Omega & Kota Ibushi hit two birds with one stone by proving they are a top level tag team while Omega proves he’s better than Tanahashi? Or will The Ace and the #BlockChampion gain major momentum going into the biggest NJPW event?
The teams meet and Tanahashi mocks the Cleaner’s finger gun. Tanahashi and Omega start arguing, then they start fighting! The bell rings and the brawl continues. Tanahashi hist, Omega hits, and back again. Tanahashi gets an edge and whips but Omega holds the ropes. Omega boots Tanahashi but misses the V-Trigger. Tanahashi swings but Omega dodges, and back again. The two stare down but the fans fire up. Omega and Tanahashi cool off, and Omega tags to Ibushi. Tanahashi tags to Finlay, and fans rally for both of them. Ibushi and Finlay circle and tie up. Finlay gets a waistlock but Ibushi gets the standing switch. Finlay reverses to a wristlock bu Ibushi reverses back. Ibushi wrenches but Finlay reverses, shifts to a headlock, but Ibushi reverses to a hammerlock and headlock. Finlay powers out and things speed up, Finlay dropkicks Ibushi down!
Ibushi checks his teeth while Finlay brings him up. Omega manages a tag as Finlay whips Ibushi. Things speed up as both Lovers hurdle Finlay. Ibushi roundhouses Finlay, and Omega hits the Kotaro Krusher bulldog! Omega covers, TWO! Omega brings Finlay up and bumps him off the buckles, then tags to Ibushi. Ibushi stomps Finlay, then throws forearms. Ibushi eggs Finlay on so Finlay gives forearms back, but Ibushi’s one forearm knocks Finlay over. Tag to Omega, and Omega mugs Finlay. Omega whips Finlay and runs him over with a back elbow. He stands Finlay up in an open corner for haymakers and CHOPS! Omega whips Finlay corner to corner hard and Finlay hits the mat. cover, but Tanahahsi breaks it. So Omega throws Tanahashi out and follows after! Omega whips Tanahashi into railing!
Omega returns to Finlay but Finlay hits back. They brawl, forearms for EuroUppers. Finlay runs but into the kitchen sink knee. Omega spots Tanahashi returning and slingshots out to take him down! Omega gets up and assures Ibushi he’s got this. But he enters and collides with Finlay! Tanahashi returns to his corner, Finlay gives him the tag! Tanahashi rallies on the Lovers, blocks Omega’s boot, and hits a dragon screw! Fans fire up with Tanahashi as he stalks Omega, Tanahashi runs but Omega dodges to fireman’s carry. “You Can’t Escape!” Rolling senton but a little slow to the corner. Omeag’s moonsault misses and Tanahashi dropkicks the leg out. Tanahsahi runs into a CHOP, but he palm strikes back! V-Trigger outta nowhere! Omega then ducks to snap dragon suplex!
Omega fires up and drags Tananashi into the Electric Chair. Tanahashi spins through to the Twist ‘n’ Shout! Fans rally up while both men are down. Ibushi and Finlay return to their corners, and reach out as Omega and Tanahashi crawl. Hot tags bring them both in, but both men dodges each other. Ibushi fires off a strike fest, then a Penalty Kick to standing corkscrew! Cover, TWO! Fans rally for Ibushi as he drags Finlay up. Finlay resists and fights out with elbows. Finlay forearms but Ibushi hits back. They brawl, fighting Irish spirit against Japanese bushido. Finlay staggers but EuroUppers. Ibushi forearms and they go back and forth. Ibushi kicks, then runs, but into a BIG urenage! Cover, TWO!! Finlay keeps his focus as he vows to finish this. He aims from a corner, but his cutter is blocked int a straitjacket German! Bridge, TWO!
Ibushi has both hands, but misses Kamigoye! Tanahashi Slingblades Ibushi, but gets Omega’s V-Trigger! Omega scoops Finlay up, and Ibushi comes in, Golden Indietaker! But they’re not done with Finlay, they sit him up for the Golden Trigger, only for Tanahashi to crossbody them both! Tanahashi runs again, but into V-trigger and roundhouse combo! Ibushi drags Finlay back in, Golden Trigger hits!! Cover, Golden Lovers win!
Winners: The Golden Lovers, Kota Ibushi pinning
Victory for the Cleaner and Golden Star! Omega taunts Tanahashi with both his belt and Tanahashi’s briefcase. Tick tock, Wrestle Kingdom is coming. Will Omega prove he can trump The Ace? Or will The Once in a Century Talent take the title for his own once more?
IWGP Intercontinental Championship: Chris Jericho VS Evil!
The Ayatollah of Rock ‘n’ Rolla has done what he wants when he wants since coming to NJPW, and that doubly goes for the two members of Los Ingobernables de Japon he’s gone after. Y2J left Tetsuya Naito bloody, and ambushed Evil as one of his acolytes. Will The King of Darkness make him pay for such disrespect? Or will Jericho simply add Evil to the List of wrestlers he’s defeated?
Jericho seems to mock LIJ as he takes his time with his wardrobe. He pulls off one mask to reveal he has another. Evil doesn’t wait for him to take that mask off, he attacks! The bell rings to get this match going, and Evil throws forearm after forearm into Jericho. Evil rakes Jericho’s eyes then whips him corner to corner. Jericho’s boot is blocked and Evil clotheslines back. Evil whips Jericho again, but Jericho bails out fast. Jericho wants to walk away already but Evil pursues him. Evil attacks Jericho and bowls him into chairs! Fans get clear as Evil clubs away. Jericho hits back and they brawl in the front row. Evil chops Jericho then follows him back to ringside. Evil bumps Jericho into a post, then suplexes him to the floor!
Jericho writhes but Evil looms over him. Evil has media clear out while he searches under the ring. Evil brings out a table! He sets it up nearby while Jericho leans on railing. Evil goes back to Jericho but the brawl continues. Evil throws Jericho into the apron, then brings him over to the table. Red Shoes tells Evil not to do it, but Evil still wants to use the table. Evil lifts but Jericho resists. Jericho back drops Evil to the ground! Jericho comes back to stomp Evil, then whips Evil into railing! Fans rally while Jericho confiscates a camera. Jericho films himself stomping Evil, then gives the camera back. Jericho uses his shirt to choke Evil, then dumps Evil over railing!
Red Shoes reprimands Jericho but Jericho goes to the commentary area. Jericho clears things out and slams Evil on the desk. Then he drags Evil onto that desk, and gives Evil a DDT to the desk! “Everything is Jericho!” while we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns, and Jericho gloats over Evil. Jericho swats Young Lions and gets in Red Shoes’ face before going back to Evil. Jericho tosses Evil back over the railing then tosses the desk at more Young Lions! He takes the NJPW banner and blows his nose in it! Fans boo and jeer as Jericho tosses the banner away. Jericho talks trash to commentary before dropping double ax handles on Evil. He puts Evil in the ring and climbs up top. Evil stands and Jericho brings him down with a crossbody! Cover, TWO! Jericho stomps Evil out, then mocks the fans chanting for Evil. Jericho toys with Evil as he brings him up for chops. Evil staggers to a corner and Jericho gives him more chops, and forearms. Evil chops back but Jericho dropkicks him! Cover, TWO!
Fans rally for Evil but Jericho toys with him more. Jericho slaps Evil around but that angers Evil. Evil kicks and chops and haymakers back! Evil rakes eyes but runs into a SUPERKICK! Jericho hits the Lionsault! Cover, TWO! Evil survives again, but Jericho keeps his cool. Jericho drags Evil back up, scoops and slams him, then flexes his muscles. He stomps Evil in the face and kicks him in the back. Jericho goes to a corner and climbs while fans rally. Evil stops Jericho up top and gives him a chop. Evil climbs to join Jericho, but Jericho resists. They fight up there, and Jericho headbutts Evil down. Jericho adjusts as Evil stands, for a flying back elbow! Cover, TWO! Jericho stays calm while fans rally. Jericho flips the fans off then goes back to Evil. He still toys with Evil, so Evil hits back with chops!
Jericho kicks and scoops Evil, but Evil slips out. Evil blocks Jericho’s kick and hands it to Red Shoes, and kicks Jericho in the thigh! Evil throws punches and clotheslines Jericho out! Fans rally as Evil fetches Jericho. Evil brings Jericho up to club him, then whips him. Jericho reverses but Evil reverses back, Jericho collides with railing! Evil fires up and searches under the ring. Evil finds chairs! And he uses one on Jericho’s ribs! Evil puts it around Jericho’s head, and throws him at the post!! Jericho staggers, chair still around his head, and Evil SMACKS it off with another chair! Fans fire up for the ferocity, but Evil isn’t done with Jericho. Evil stalks Jericho and puts him back in the ring. Evil runs corner to corner for the corner clothesline! Then hits a fisherman suplex! Cover, TWO!
Fans rally and Evil brings Jericho up. Evil throws Jericho into buckles then stomps in a mudhole. Red Shoes counts and Evil backs off at 4. Evil runs back at Jericho, but the dropkick is blocked! Jericho wants the Walls but Evil resists. Evil throws Jericho off but Jericho dumps him out! Jericho hits the triangle jump dropkick! Evil hands on, so Jericho builds speed, only to run into a shoulder. Evil’s table is nearby, so Evil lines up a shot. He drags Jericho up, but Jericho resists the suplex. Evil keeps trying, but only manages to bring Jericho to the apron. Jericho breaks free of the facelock but gets a headbutt for it. Evil tries a new way, and leaps for an urenage through the table!! Both men crash and burn through the wood, and we go to break!
NJPW on AXS returns to find both men are still down. Red Shoes brings a 20 count, but neither man stirs until about 10. Evil sits up first at 13, followed by Jericho. They head for the ring and enter at 16. Evil climbs up top, aims and leaps, and the SUPER Back Senton manages to graze Jericho! Cover, TWO!! Jericho survives and Evil grows frustrated, but fans rally up. Evil drags Jericho up and wants a fireman’s carry but Jericho fights. Jericho rolls Evil up and gets the Walls of Jericho! Evil endures this iconic stretch and crawls for ropes, but Jericho pulls back while talking trash. Fans rally and Evil feeds off it to crawl further. Evil gives one last gasp, and gets the ropebreak!
Jericho lets go, thinking he won, but he didn’t. Jericho argues with Red Shoes, then shove shim down. Evil clobbers Jericho with a clothesline! Cover, TWO!! Evil lines up another shot, but Jericho elbows to counter. Jericho springboards but the Lionsault misses! Evil rolls through to fireman’s carry Jericho, Darkness Falls!! Cover, TWO!? Jericho barely survives and Evil can’t believe it! Fans rally again, and Evil prepares his shot. Evil slashes Jericho’s throat, drags him up, but Jericho victory rolls through! TWO, Jericho dodges but the Code Breaker is blocked. Double clotheslines bring both men down! Fans rally yet again and both men slowly stir.
Jericho CHOPS Evil, but Evil responds with a CHOP of his own. Jericho throws forearms but Evil responds. Now Jericho rakes the eyes then runs, but Evil follows, only to get a Code Breaker! Cover, TWO!! Evil barely survives and Jericho can’t believe it. Jericho slaps Evil as he tells him to stay down. Jericho rains down rights and bounces Evil’s face off the mat. “Everything is Jericho!” as he climbs up top. Evil stands again, and catches the ax handles. Jericho gets out of the STO but Evil blocks the clothesline. Evil hits his STO! Cover, TWO!! Jericho still lives and Evil is stunned! Evil prepares again, runs, and clotheslines Jericho again! Evil wants another but Jericho pushes him at Red Shoes! Jericho’s kick is blocked, Evil fireman’s carry, DARKNESS– Huricanrana! Roll through, to Walls of Jericho!!
Evil is stuck in the middle of the ring, but he crawls for ropes. Jericho sits deep, but Evil keeps trying. Evil gets close, but Jericho brings him away! Jericho gets an angle on the hold, Evil taps! Jericho wins!!
Winner: Chris Jericho, by submission; still IWGP Intercontinental Champion
The first defense is successful, and Jericho smiles an evil smile. But as always, he attacks afterward! He puts Evil back in the Walls of Jericho, even as the bell rings and Red Shoes shouts. But here comes Naito! Naito makes another save and he tees off on Jericho! Jericho bails out fast, taking the title with him. Naito invites Jericho to return but Jericho doesn’t. Jericho holds his hands and belt up high, but Naito gets a mic. “Chris Jericho, your next opponent… Is me.” Los Ingobernables de Japon’s Testuya Naito, “against self-proclaimed worldwide superstar, Chris Jericho. I’m gonna bury you, cabron.” The Ungovernable Charisma wants to make Jericho pay, will we see that happen at Wrestle Kingdom?
Chris Jericho says his match with Evil was an instant classic. That’s the first classic that Evil has ever had, but #257 for Jericho. Jericho has classic after classic after classic. He’s the GOAT for a reason. For those who don’t get that, perhaps the Japanese audience, it stands for Greatest of All Time. And it’s not a tagline, it’s not a catchphrase, it’st he truth. Find someone in the history of this world who has more Intercontinental Championship reigns that Y2J, he dares you! But you can’t! And not just because they pretend to not speak English. They won’t because “the foreigner won”. Jericho is undefeated in NJPW against Japanese, and he’ll stay that way.
Evil’s great, that was a great match, best in a long time for Jericho, but Jericho won like he said he would, and now Evil is famous thanks to him. Naito is famous thanks to Jericho, too. If Naito wants to be famous again, he should find someone else. Jericho says no more rematches for Naito ever. However, Jericho isn’t the match maker. Will NJPW management deem Naito worthy of another shot? Will Naito make the best of that opportunity and take the title back? Or will NJPW never, ever, EVER, be the same again?
What a great conclusion for the Power Struggle event. I’m surprised we got three matches, but two of them were surprisingly quick. The chaos in the minor Chaos VS Firing Squad match was great, it was like two separate singles matches rather than a tag team match. Chaos gets the rather meaningless win, and clearly White’s halfhearted “anywhere, any time” challenge implies Wrestle Kingdom will see Okada VS White as a blow-off. Now what would really make this match mean more is if there is a stipulation relating to who controls Chaos. If White wins, he and Gedo run Chaos as an extension of the Firing Squad so that their numbers grow. Of course, many of the Chaos members probably won’t go for it, and they would help Okada win in that scenario. But I’m sure Okada wins, stipulation or not.
The Golden Lovers VS Tanahashi & Finlay was great for being under 10 minutes. They barely slowed down once things got going, and while Omega and Tanahashi aren’t involved in the finish, it establishes Omega has an edge going into Wrestle Kingdom’s title match. There is a lot going on for The Elite as we go into 2019, with any number of things being reason for why Omega himself might be staying or going. I’d imagine the results of this IWGP Heavyweight Championship match is a major indicator of what is happening for Omega and by extension, The Elite. Then the IWGP Intercontinental Championship main event was really great. Jericho’s NJPW attitude has really kept him fresh, and he definitely meant it when Evil gave him a great match. Jericho VS Naito rematch is coming, and that could go either way by my estimation.
My Score: 8.6/10
Mitchell’s ROH Results & Report! (7/13/19)
The Kingdom, Jay Lethal and The Bouncers in a big Six Man main event!
ROH Wrestling Television, Episode 408
Manhattan Mayhem is on the horizon, and so is a major ROH World Championship match! But before Matt Taven and Jay Lethal face off 1v1, they bring allies to the ring for a truly massive Six Man Tag match!
- Proving Ground: Rhett Titus VS Shane Taylor; Taylor wins.
- WOH World Championship #1 Contender’s Four Corner Survival: Stella Grey VS Jenny Rose VS Angelina Love VS Tasha Steelz; Steelz wins and will challenge Kelly Klein for the title at Summer Supercard.
- Six Man Tag: The Kingdom VS Jay Lethal & The Bouncers; Lethal & The Bouncers win.
PLAY BY PLAY
ROH looks back to Best in the World.
The Peacock faced Rush’s brother, Dragon Lee, and beat him using Rush’s moves! The Best of 3 Series’ third match saw the K I N G topple the Franchise Player! And the Villain Enterprises expanded to include an army! A FLIP Army! The Allure used every trick up their sleeves to beat the Pretty Badass and American Joshi, but were confronted by Maria Manic! Manic didn’t get her hands on Mandy Leon or the Beautiful People, so she ran roughshod over security! And most shocking of all, Matt Taven didn’t need to resort to anything underhanded to down the Hawaiian Juggernaut!! How can anyone hope to stop Taven’s #PurpleReign now?
Kenny King joins ROH commentary for this opening contest.
Coming off a big victory over THE Jay Lethal, the K I N G wants to see what his old friends are up to.
Proving Ground: Rhett Titus VS Shane Taylor!
The Fittest returns to in-ring action to show that Strong Beach physique. But will physique be enough to survive the Notorious Hitman and ROH World Television Champion?
Rhett wants to shake hands with his former Rebellion brother, but Taylor SPITS on the Code of Honor! Rhett just uses it as body oil. The bell rings and the 10 minute time limit starts counting down. All Rhett has to do is survive the 10 minutes, and he gets a future shot at the title!
Fans rally as the two circle. Taylor shoves Rhett down and taunts him as he stands up. Rhett comes back to waistlock, but Taylor standing switches. Rhett powers his way out, but gets caught in a full nelson! Taylor grins but Rhett powers out of the nelson! Taylor headlocks but Rhett powers out to headlock back. Rhett grinds but Taylor powers out and runs Rhett over! Taylor wants Rhett to stop playing, and scoops him up. Rhett slips out and dropkicks Taylor back! Rhett grins and flexes, but then he tries to fireman’s carry, and Taylor is too much. Taylor spins Rhett, misses one way but hits the clothesline on the other! ROH goes to break as Taylor dares Rhett to get up.
ROH returns and Rhett wrecks Taylor with a dropkick. Rhett shows off his core strength with leg raises, but Taylor pulls him down to ROCK him with that One Hitter Quitter! Taylor drags Rhett up and into the ring to put him on the apron. Taylor climbs up, to drop the leg! He laughs and taunts Rhett as he CHOPS the chest! Rhett gasps for air while he crawls to a corner. Taylor climbs in and throws another big right! Rhett forearms Taylor back! Rhett backs Taylor down but Taylor blocks and reverses the whip to rock him again! Taylor yanks Rhett up but Rhett lands on his feet! Rhett rocks Taylor back with a JAB!
Rhett is in the corner again, and dodges Taylor as he runs in, to give him back a splash! And a BOOT! Then side to side for another! Rhett keeps moving to boot again! Fans fire up with The Fittest as he fireman’s carries Taylor again! For a Samoan Drop! Cover, TWO! Rhett keeps his cool as Taylor goes to a corner. Rhett runs corner to corner but his boot is blocked! Taylor shoves Rhett back to KNEE him in the face! Cover, TWO!! Rhett survives and now Taylor is frustrated. Taylor toys with Rhett but Rhett SLAPS him back! Taylor pie faces but Rhett CHOPS and forearms away! Rhett fires off forearm after forearm but Taylor bobs ‘n’ weaves to HEADBUTT! Cover, Taylor wins!
Winner: Shane Taylor, by pinfall
Rhett fell short of proving himself worthy, and the ROH World TV Champion continues rolling on. Kenny gives Taylor his due props, but goes to check on Rhett in the ring.
“I’m searching for the words, man, to describe what I just saw out of you right now.” The word is, “disgusting.” King is disgusted by Rhett. What happened to him? ROH stuck them together and they fought, they scratched and they clawed and became one of the best teams ever, the All Night Express. They beat The Briscoes, the Young Bucks, Roderick Strong, Tyler Black, you name them. “What the hell happened to you?!” Rhett fails a Proving Ground match because he only proved that while he has the body of a god, he has the “heart of a b*tch.” There’s no fight left in Rhett! If Kenny was Joe Koff, he’d rip up Rhett’s contract on the spot!
Rhett’s family and pregnant wife are here, yet he embarrasses them!? Does Rhett think it’s okay that the reason his son won’t look him in the eyes is because daddy’s a coward?! Rhett gets mad, and that’s what Kenny wants to see! Show him something! But when Rhett doesn’t, Kenny is the one who gets mad. Is the Titus family really proud of that?! Because the Rhett Kenny King knew was a man, not this “punk ass b*tch.” Will these fighting words light a fire in the Fittest? Or does the K I N G have a point?
ROH hears from Kelly Klein.
“Women of Honor has some of the best women wrestling has to offer right now, and I love it.” That means the Gatekeeper will defend her title against some of the best women around. Maria Manic has Kelly’s attention, and Kelly is ready for that match. Kelly’s even excited to fight Tasha Steelz, the Allure, Stella Grey or Jenny Rose as she defends her world title. Who makes it out of the contender’s match first in line for a fight with the Pretty Badass?
ROH looks back to June 29th.
Jay Lethal vowed to work twice as hard as before, “whip the crap out of Matt Taven,” and become a THREE-TIME ROH World Champion! But Taven told him that in New York City, July 20th, we will all finally see that we are living in “The Time of Matt Taven.” Taven is the King of ROH, because heee’s Matt Taven, and he was #BorntoRule! But then, Alex Shelley returned!
Shelley was careful not to say he retired from ROH. Let’s pretend he has a card in his hand that is known as the “veteran’s card.” And let’s say there’s a hole punched for every year he’s contributed to the industry. That’s 17 holes. Shelley’s fingerprints are all over the world of wrestling, so now he plays his card. Shelley expects to be respected! And it won’t matter who walks out of Manhattan, Shelley just wants his shot to prove to them, him, and the world that he still has #TalentonLoanfromGod! Who will the returning revolutionary meet after mayhem goes down in Manhattan?
WOH World Championship #1 Contender’s Four Corner Survival: Stella Grey VS Jenny Rose VS Angelina Love w/ The Allure VS Tasha Steelz!
While only one of the Beautiful People is in this match, it is no surprise that she still has her friends by her side. Angelina Love leads the way as Velvet Sky helps Mandy Leon and their fluffy mascot, Foxxy, into the ring. But the spotlight quickly moves to the Garden State Goddess, little gritty Grey, and the American Joshi. With Kelly Klein watching on commentary, who grabs a huge victory and earns a Summer Supercard showdown?
But before the bell rings, Velvet grabs a mic to tell Jenny she doesn’t belong here, that Stella doesn’t belong here, and Tasha- She doesn’t even know who Tasha is, actually, but she doesn’t belong here, either. The only woman in the ring that matters is the Allure’s Bada$$, Angelina Love, the TRUE #1 Contender! Angelina proved herself already when she pinned Kelly at Best in the World. Win-loss records leave out a lot, and Kelly knows Angelina didn’t need to cheat that night to win. But talking aside, the other three competitors uphold the Code of Honor, but don’t even worry about Angelina. The bell finally rings, and Jenny goes right at her!
Stella and Tasha fight while Jenny rains down rights on Angelina! Angelina and Jenny roll out of the ring and Angelina kicks back. Jenny forearms but Angelina kicks again. Stella whips Tasha but Tasha runs Stella over. Tasha brushes herself off and runs, but Stella keeps up. Tasha and Stella trade hip toss blocks while Angelina and Jenny trade apron bumps. Stella rolls Tasha but Tasha arm-drags back. Stella arm-drags Tasha now, but Angelina kicks Jenny away. Angelina is on Stella with a sleeper, but Stella kicks Tasha away. Angelina throws Stella down by her hair, and The Allure cheers her on as she whips Stella into a corner. Stella runs into Tasha, then Angelina dropkicks them into each other. Angelina throws Stella out and runs, but into Jenny’s SPEAR! Cover, TWO!
Tasha throws Jenny out fast and stares down with Angelina. Tasha flexes but it doesn’t impress Angelina. Angelina ties up with Tasha to a headlock. Tasha powers out but Angelina runs her over. Things speed up and Tasha shows agility to hip toss Angelina down! Fans fire up as Tasha whips. Angelina reverses and scoops to a spinning sidewalk slam! Cover, TWO! Tasha fires forearms back and whips, but Angelina reverses. Tasha goes up and over and rolls, to drop toehold Angelina down. Angelina gets clear of the basement dropkick but Tasha gets clear of the elbow drop. The two stare down as fans cheer.
Tasha eggs Angelina on, and the two start trading forearms. Tasha gets an edge and fires off! She runs but Mandy trips her up! A Fatal 4 Way means no disqualifications, but the referee tells the Allure they’re EJECTED! Mandy is upset and Velvet just shrugs it off as they take Foxxy with them. Angelina is a bit more concerned now that she’s all alone as ROH goes to break.
ROH returns and Tasha waistlocks Angelina. They roll to a cover, TWO! Stella throws Tasha out to roll Angelina, but Jenny breaks it. Jenny kicks Stella out to then La Magistrol Angelina, TWO! Jenny stays on Angelina in a corner for a back elbow and whip. Angelina reverses but Jenny dodges to send Angelina into the post! Jenny dropkicks Stella back out and goes out to join her. They start trading hands, but Tasha slingshots out to take them both down! Fans fire up but now Angelina climbs up top. Angelina LEAPS to crossbody them all down! This is the top tier talent Kelly has wanted to see. But speaking of, Angelina dares Kelly to come closer. Kelly heads closer to the ring, and stares Angelina down the whole way. But this keeps Angelina seeing Jenny, Stella and Tasha all get back in the ring.
Jenny clubs Angelina, and has help from Stella! They DOUBLE POWERBOMB Angelina down! But then Tasha double clotheslines Jenny and Stella down! Fans fire up behind the Boricua Badass as she fireman’s carries Stella. Stella fights out and drags Tasha into a sleeper hold clutch! Angelina kicks Jenny then hits a complete shot, to the Koji Klutch! Side-by-side submissions, but which one puts their victim out first!? Jenny and Tasha endures, and Jenny reaches for a ropebreak! The ref counts and Angelina lets her go. Meanwhile, Tasha sits up, and Angelina kicks Stella off her! Jenny kicks Angelina down, then goes to Tasha for a German Suplex! Jenny kicks Stella for a snap suplex! She runs at Angelina but gets the Botox Injection! Angelina covers, but Stella breaks it!
Stella scoops but Angelina slips out and shoves, Botox Injection for Stella! Tasha throws Angelina out to get Stella with a CUTTER! Cover, Tasha wins!!
Winner: Tasha Steelz, by pinfall; NEW #1 Contender to the WOH World Championship
Angelina ain’t happy about it, but the Boricua Badass got the better of her fair and square, okurrr? Can Tasha make it a one and done when it comes to title matches? Or will Kelly still be the champion when she leaves Toronto?
But wait, the lights drop down. And a rather creepy little video plays. Dolls sit in a line, but a hand reaches out to take the man. To chew him up and spit him out! Because the MANEATER is here! And Maria Manic has appeared behind Tasha and Angelina! Angelina saw this once before, she gets away again. But Tasha shows no fear! Security hurries to keep this fight from happening, but Maria just manhandles them like she did at Best in the World! She takes one and tosses him from the ring, then clotheslines another! But she slaps the third around to then put him in the torture rack! And then she dumps him out onto the other two! The fourth man gets the double hand choke slam! Maria Manic made mince meat of five grown men, but is she going to devour the entire WOH Division?
ROH hears from Rush.
El Toro Blanco is “sick and tired” of Dalton Castle. Rush whooped The Peacock in 15 seconds. But if Castle wants to mess with his familia, well perro, the bull is going to end him for good! Rush didn’t come to ROH to play, he came to become the best! “Nothing happens unless I say so.” When and where will this grudge match happen? Mass Hyteria on July 21st! A wild weekend is coming for ROH, who survives the mayhem and hysteria on the way to the Summer Supercard?
Six Man Tag: The Kingdom VS Jay Lethal & The Bouncers!
Matt Taven vows to prove he’s the king, while TK O’Ryan and Vinnie Marseglia vow to show who are the real elite tag team wrestlers in ROH. But they’ll have to prove it with actions, not words, as they take on their rivals all at once! Will the Franchise Player gain major momentum towards Manhattan when he sides with former foes in Brian Milonas & The Beer City Bruiser?
But given the apparent collusion involving Kenny King and timekeeper Amy Rose, Jay Lethal asks that she take her leave. Amy obliges, not wanting to be a source of controversy for this main event. The Kingdom then make their entrance, and ROH takes another break.
ROH returns and Lethal starts against the Horror King. The bell rings and they tie up right away! Vinnie powers Lethal to a corner but the ref backs him off. Vinnie throws a forearm but Lethal gives it back and we have a brawl! Lethal starts backing Vinnie down but Vinnie knees low and puts Lethal in a corner. Vinnie chops but Lethal CHOPS right back. They trade more CHOPS, and Vinnie wants Lethal to give him more. Lethal CHOPS Vinnie like he wants, but Vinnie just trash talks and knees low. Vinnie runs but misses in the corner, Lethal hip tosses and cartwheels to dropkick! Vinnie hurries to the Kingdom’s corner and tags to TK. Brian “Brawler” Milonas tags in and ties up with the Sassy Wild Horse.
Milonas shoves TK all the way back to his corner! TK runs back out but skids to a stop as Milonas towers over him. TK says he wants Lethal? Milonas gives TK what he wants, but he does tag Lethal a bit hard. Lethal shakes it off and ties up with TK. TK headlocks but Lethal powers out, only for TK to run him over. TK runs and runs Lethal over again, but things speed up. Lethal hurdles but his hip toss is blocked to TK’s own hip toss. Lethal boots TK back but runs into an elbow. TK runs but into that hip toss and cartwheel dropkick! Lethal has gotten two Kingdom members with that, and then tags in Bruiser. Taven tags in and Bruiser dares him to bring the fight. Taven has Bruiser calm down, and fans chant “Melvin! Melvin!” But again, The Kingdom wants Lethal.
Taven wants Lethal and even offers a free shot. Bruiser says Taven’s too scared to fight a real man. Taven just wants Lethal, and again gives a free shot. Lethal tags in but he sees the sucker punch coming. The two fire off haymakers and CHOPS on each other! Lethal whips but Taven reverses, but Lethal gets under TK at the ropes. Vinnie rushes at Lethal on the outside but Lethal dodges to CHOP! TK jumps but Lethal punches him out of the air, only for Taven to wreck Lethal with a dropkick! Taven drags Lethal up and throws him into railing, then The Kingdom attacks like piranha! The Bouncers protest but The Kingdom put Lethal in. Taven stomps and chokes Lethal to then tag in Vinnie. The Kingdom mugs Lethal with stomps then Vinnie rains rights down. Fans duel as ROH goes to one more break.
ROH returns once again, and The Kingdom continues to mug Lethal. Taven stomps Lethal down then drags him up to put in the Kingdom’s corner. Taven CHOPS Lethal then tags in Vinnie. Vinnie tags in TK, and the two whip Lethal. Lethal reverses to whip Vinnie, but TK waistlocks him. Lethal boots Vinnie then slips out of TK’s suplex. He ducks them both to tag in Bruiser! Bruiser rallies with the power of “BEER! BEER!” He punches Taven, uppercuts Vinnie, and uppercuts TK! Bruiser brings TK in for the sidewinder DDT! Cover but Vinnie breaks it! Vinnie fish hooks Bruiser but Bruiser bites the fingers. Oh but wait, Bruiser can’t bite, “I ain’t got no teef!” Bruiser brings TK up but TK CHOPS! TK kicks low and DDT’s Bruiser! But Milonas tags in to rally on The Kingdom! He even back drops Taven!
Milonas falls back to senton on Taven! Vinnie runs but gets flattened with a crossbody! Cover, but Taven breaks it! Taven fires off strikes on Milonas, but Milonas powers Taven to a fireman’s carry. TK leaps but into Milonas’ arms! Milonas gives them a Fall Away Samoan Drop combo! Fans fire up with the Mastodon, but also for Lethal as he DIVES onto Vinnie! Lethal gets back in to DIVE onto TK! And of course, he runs and DIVES onto Taven! The trifecta has been completed! Vinnie runs in to fight with the Bouncers, and whips Bruiser, but Bruiser reverses. TK tags in before Vinnie gets fed to the Scrapbuster! TK climbs and leaps, but into Bruiser’s arms. Milonas sandwiches TK with Bruiser, and it even sends Bruiser stumbling. But Bruiser comes back while Milonas climbs, and it’s the Last Call leg drop! Cover, The Bouncers and Lethal win!
Winners: Jay Lethal & The Bouncers, Brian Milonas pinning
The winner of Guerrillas of Destiny VS The Briscoes in the ROH World Tag Team Championship match at Manhattan Mayhem better watch out, because some big competition is meeting them at Mass Hysteria. Who will The Bouncers get to toast with on the 21st?
But wait, Taven doesn’t let Lethal go, and gives him CLIMAX to the floor!! The Bouncers hurry to Lethal’s side as The Kingdom retreats. Taven raises the title, but will he still be holding onto the gold after Manhattan Mayhem?
A pretty good go-home with major developments for a busy weekend coming up for ROH. Not only is Manhattan Mayhem on Saturday, July 20th, but now there’s another event on July 21st with this “Mass Hysteria” in Lowell, Massachusetts. Of course, this is all on top of ROH TV finally referencing Best in the World, but the usual mess was mostly ironed out. Rush has a solid promo, and his grudge match with Castle will surely be longer and better than the shocking 15 second squash at G1 Supercard. What’s odd is that while Kenny King beat Lethal at BitW in their Best of 3, he’s doing a story with Rhett Titus next? Lethal’s using his contractual rematch, sure, but is this story with Rhett going to delay Kenny’s shot at Taven more? Is Rhett going to turn so that we more or less get an All Night Express reunion? It is both intriguing yet confusing as to what is going on here.
The Women’s Fatal 4 was a great match, and what a great surprise to see the younger Tasha Steelz getting this chance. I thought it was going to be Angelina Love, but at the same time, even Angelina Love seems like an odd choice from out of The Allure. But I suppose with now women’s tag titles in ROH (yet?) all three could try going after Kelly in turn. And then we got to see Maria Manic at the same time tonight, that was a great way to debut! The Maneater will surely be a contender, and a monster for the Allure to worry about while they’re each taking turns against Kelly Klein. Kelly’s promo is obviously to put the company over, but for just the WOH Division in a vacuum, it is definitely heating up now with an addition like Manic.
And to end the show, we get a really good Six Man Tag, and obviously the goal for The Kingdom was to do as much as they could to Lethal so it’ll be easier for Taven in Manhattan. I am still disappointed the timing kept Jeff Cobb from becoming ROH’s top guy, but I again reference that the G1 Climax and Cobb going back and forth just wouldn’t be good for him or ROH. Lethal might as well dethrone Taven, joining Adam Cole as the only other three-time champ. Then we could get Lethal VS King 4 within a span of a few months, and maybe that story (which has an interesting twist with how it involves timekeeper Amy Rose) is what gives King his first world title reign, and makes him an ROH Triple Crown winner. Then we can circle back to King VS K I N G, Grand Slam Taven VS Triple Crown Kenny for the One True King of Honor!
My Score: 8.2/10
Andrew’s G1 Climax 29 Ratings & Analysis: Night 5 A Block
KENTA, Lance Archer and Kazuchika Okada are setting the early A Block pace! Something’s gotta give. Who comes out undefeated?
KENTA, Lance Archer and Kazuchika Okada are setting the early A Block pace! Something’s gotta give. Who comes out undefeated?
Shmoxley in the opening tag team match means we should start off fun. Tanahashi and Sabre are in the battle of, well, someone needs to get at least a point out of that.
Then we’ve got Ospreay and Ibushi who are banged up but most likely still going to be psychopaths in the ring. Let’s get ready for the carnage, I mean, no…I meant carnage.
- Shota Umino & Jon Moxley vs Tomohiro Ishii & Yuya Uemura: Shooter wins via Fisherman Suplex Hold @5:45 – ***
- Hirooki Goto, Jeff Cobb & YOSHI-HASHI vs Toa Henare, Yota Tsuji & Juice Robinson: YOSHI wins via Butterfly Lock @9:30 – ** 1/4
- Tomoaki Honma, Ren Narita & Toru Yano vs Jay White, Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi: Owens wins via Package Piledriver @8:50 – ** 1/2
- BUSHI, Tetsuya Naito & Shingo Takagi vs Taichi, Minoru Suzuki & Yoshinobu Kanemaru: Suzuki wins via Gotch Style Piledriver @8:35 – ** 1/2
- A Block: KENTA vs Lance Archer: Kenta wins via Game Over @12:00 – ***
- A Block: SANADA vs EVIL: EVIL wins via Everything is Evil @18:10 – **** 1/4
- A Block: Bad Luck Fale vs Kazuchika Okada: Okada wins via Double Legged Cradle @10:15 – ** 1/2
- A Block: Zack Sabre Jr vs Hiroshi Tanahashi: Tanahashi wins via Triangle Counter Pin @13:55 – *** 3/4
- A Block: Kota Ibushi vs Will Ospreay: Ibushi wins via Kamigoye Knee @27:15 – **** 3/4
Moxley and Ishii start off trying to kill one another. This is a great opener and the respective Young Lions have to pull their veteran off as to not incur a disqualification. The Young Lions then take the bulk of the match and Shota has definitely picked up a few mannerisms from Moxley that we slowly see him unlocking. This may be our evolution of Shooter, but for an opening match this was very fun and the fact Moxley and Ishii just want to fight added for a neat dynamic.
Juice and Cobb are both respectful Gaijin faces, so not a lot of heat for this match. Plus YOSHI-HASHI was in it, so I could’ve downed a few Valium and been more invested in staring at a wall. Pork Chop Sandwiches later, and YOSHI-HASHI wins with that awful Butterfly Lock. Great…I can now taste colors.
So Yano wanted to get him a piece of the Jay White on the down turn, but Jay tried to still play the calculating heel. Honma put in a bit of decent work but Narita was obviously the one sent out to eat the pin. Narita held his own against Yujiro and Chase, but Chase eventually stopped playing with his feud and hit the Package Piledriver to tie things up in a nice little bow.
Shingo took a hell of a beating in this match. Kanemaru played random interference and Taichi took Shingo to the woodshed. Naito also continued his distaste of Taichi and Suzuki while being a little protective of Shingo at points. Now being the unabashed fanboy of Shingo, yet also a subscriber to Holy Emperor weekly, I’m very torn about this whole thing. The match played up the G1 tensions and the LIJ vs Suzuki-Gun tensions very well, but my heart knows not which to root for.
Lance is a good foot taller than KENTA and that was the story of the first 75% of this match. Lance was shrugging off the strikes of our returning striker. KENTA was getting effectively crushed, until Lance pushed the anime comeback button and said “You’re fucking Hideo! That’s who you are! HIDEO!” – which prompted the anime comeback in KENTA. KENTA managed to even lift Lance for a few things, but relied heavily on the dropkicks and strikes. He couldn’t quite pull off the Go 2 Sleep, so he went to his Crossface submission, Game Over. And boy howdy, it was game over! (I will see myself out after that)
EVIL and SANADA have this brotherly rivalry in LIJ. Being former 2 time IWGP Heavyweight Tag Champions, familiarity is obvious. SANADA starts off the match quickly and this is definitely a match of quick bursts when the one gets an advantage. I guess they are transitioning SANADA away from the Paradise Lock since this is the second match where he had it mostly on, but “something happened” and the opponent gets out of the move. We get a bunch of great back and forth, but something that continues to plague SANADA is his limited moveset when it gets down to crunch time. EVIL pulled out a plethora of tricks, including using the referee as an anchor for the Magic Killer. Whereas, SANADA sticks to Dragon Sleeper variants, into Skull End attempt or a Moonsault. With how over SANADA is, I really expect him to start getting more crunch time maneuvers. EVIL wins and quickly wants to bury the hatchet by extending the LIJ fist bump. SANADA bumps fists, and all is fine in our ungovernable world.
Fale tends to have Okada’s number in tournaments, and he starts off by attacking him in the back and dragging him out. So we get a typical Bullet Club brawl with heel tactics and ref bumps, but Okada perseveres. Okada is able to lift Fale a few times, but can’t hit the Rainmaker, and wins via the wrestling move he tends to fall back on, the Double Legged Cradle.
Well both Tanahashi and Sabre come into this match 0-2, so there’s a level of desperation that both bring to the table. Sabre wrestled circles around Tanahashi, and Tanahashi just tried to keep up for most of the match. After countering the High Fly Flow, Sabre locks in a Triangle Arm Bar, but Tanahashi floats over for the bridging pin counter. The Ace finally has 2 points!
There have been well known injuries for both of these men, and they played into the story of the match well. Focusing on each other’s injuries, calling back to their Wrestle Kingdom match and just a generally high energy and high impact match. Watching this match, you have to assume one of them will die with their style, but it is damn entertaining. Everyone expected this to be a great match and it delivered.
Overall Score: 8/10
Well we had a lot of good storylines and matches that mostly paid off. Lance Archer has been doing great work, Fale and Okada was at least somewhat entertaining and the cripple fight in the main event was fantastic. The inner faction turmoil was now squashed, so we can have a nice tournament while The Ace gets a few points over the petulant British child.
So great show, great entertainment, and generally a good time. I can only hope the B Block carries equal weight.
Block A Standings:
- Kazuchika Okada: 3-0 (6 Points)
- KENTA: 3-0 (6 Points)
- Lance Archer: 2-1 (4 Points)
- EVIL: 2-1 (4 Points)
- SANADA: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Hiroshi Tanahashi: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Will Ospreay: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Bad Luck Fale: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Kota Ibushi: 1-2 (2 Points)
- Zack Sabre Jr: 0-3 (0 Points)