Raw “General Manager Elect” Baron Corbin has drawn a line in the sand. Who will dare stand against his tyranny after what he did to Elias and Finn Balor?
- Ronda Rousey & Natalya VS Nia Jax & Tamina; No Contest.
- Mickie James & Alicia Fox w/ Dana Brooke VS Sasha Banks & Bayley; Banks & Bayley win.
- Lucha House Party VS The Revival; Lucha House Party wins.
- Drew McIntyre VS Dolph Ziggler; Ziggler wins.
- Bobby Roode VS Drake Maverick; turned into…
- 3 on 2 Handicap Match: Drake Maverick & The Authors of Pain VS Bobby Roode & Chad Gable; Maverick & the AoP win.
- Rhyno VS Heath Slater; Slater wins and keeps their job, Rhyno is fired from Raw.
- Finn Balor VS Jinder Mahal w/ The Singh Brothers; Finn wins.
- Ronda Rousey & Ember Moon VS Nia Jax & Tamina; Rousey & Moon win.
PLAY BY PLAY
WWE and Raw give a 10 bell salute to the former president, late George H.W. Bush.
The 41st President and Houston’s hometown hero, he passed away on November 30th, 2018.
Ronda Rousey & Natalya VS Nia Jax & Tamina!
The Baddest Woman on the Planet heads for TLC for a major title match against Nia Jax in a rematch from Money in the Bank. However, before she and the #Facebreaker can settle things 1v1, they are joined by their closest allies tonight. Will Rowdy Rousey and the Queen of Harts get payback on the Samoan Dynasty for that ambush set up from last week?
The teams are tense as they stand across from each other, but wait! The Riott Squad are here, with a table! And that distraction allows Nia and Tamina to get the drop on Ronda and Natty! Natty goes down but Ronda fights back! She has Tamina down then fights off Nia. Ronda fires off but Tamina drags her out of the ring! The Squad take their time coming around as Nia and Tamina give Ronda headbutts. The Samoan Dynasty double whip Ronda into steel steps! Meanwhile, The Squad go after Natty, but Natty hits back! Numbers are not in her favor and they put her into the barriers then into the apron. Ruby drags Natty up onto the apron while Liv and Sarah fetch the table. They set the table nearby, and Ruby drags Natty up.
But Ronda crawls back into the ring! She heads for Ruby, but Tamina stops her with a stomp. Ronda still fights back, but Nia runs her over, and drops the leg! Ruby is free to drag Natty up, and with Sarah and Liv taking hold on the outsider, SUPERKICK to powerbomb through the table!! The Queen of Harts is down and out as the Squad laugh it up. Nia and Tamina also leave Ronda before as Houston boos and jeers. Ronda crawls to Natty’s side, and Natty is writhing while clutching her arm. Will Natty be in any shape to seek revenge? Is Ronda going to find herself all alone against the vicious wolves of Raw’s Women’s Division?
Natty and Ronda walk backstage.
Ronda helps Natty sit on a trunk and WWE medics appear. They’ll hep Natty out but Ronda’s furious. Will she seek revenge before the night’s over?
Alexa Bliss heads to the ring!
The Goddess is now in charge of the Women’s Division, and she promises to give the WWE Universe the best Raw has to offer. Last week’s open forum didn’t go to plan so we’ll try again. Charly Caruso is ringside to help fans ask their questions for Sasha Banks and Bayley. As such, Alexa gives Sasha & Bayley their introductions. Sasha and Bayley do come out, despite last week’s open forum really just being a sneak attack. The Boss & Hug connection join Alexa in the ring despite that, too, and take their seats. Alexa appreciates they accepted this second try. Now, to the questions! Bayley wants Alexa to wait and answer them if there’s gonna be another sneak attack. Alexa is glad Bayley brought that up. Alexa was completely unaware Mickie James, Alicia Fox and Dana Brooke were going to do that.
Now, to the questions. “How do you guys respond to all the comments on social media that Sasha’s using Bayley?” Oh no~! That was a secret~! Right, Corey? Right, Alexa? It’s not like these two spent a fun weekend in Texas or anything. These two are best friends, tag team 4 life! Aw how cute. Next question: “If you could have a match with any female superstar from any era, who would it be?” Trish & Lita, Wrestlemania! Wow, great dream match. Okay next. “It’s a silly question, but if you could have any super power, what would it be?” Bayley likes the ability to make things disappear, and would use it on Alexa! OOOH~! Wow just when Alexa thought they were making progress, Bayley disappoints. Fans still like Bayley’s idea, though. What about Sasha’s superpower? The same as Bayley’s, actually. Well, that’s fine, Alexa took the title off Sasha.
Next question: “What changes will you bring to the Raw Women’s Division in 2019?” Bayley knows WWE Evolution was great, but she knows #LegitHuggable want to be the first ever WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions! But then here come Dana, Mickie and Alicia again! Alexa tells them to not do this again. She reprimanded them already. She is the boss now. But if these three want to fight, then there will be a tag team match. Dana can be ringside for Mickie & Alicia VS Sasha & Bayley, right now!
Mickie James & Alicia Fox w/ Dana Brooke VS Sasha Banks & Bayley!
Raw goes picture in picture as teams sort out. We start with Mickie against Bayley at the bell. They circle and Bayley gets a takedown. Bayley throws fast hands but Mickie gets away. We return to single picture as Bayley runs in but misses the knee strike. Mickie runs in but into Bayley’s elbow. She staggers back but Dana distracts so that Alicia can yank Bayley down by her hair! Mickie laughs before kicking Bayley down. She brings Bayley over to kick and stomp in the corner. Tag to Alicia and Alicia adds her stomps. Alicia wrenches Bayley into the Northern Lights! Bridge, TWO! Alicia keeps on Bayley with a chinlock but fans rally up for Bayley.
Bayley feeds off the energy and gets up, only for Alicia to wrangle her back down. Alicia leans on Bayley but Bayley fights out. Mickie tags in and Alicia feeds Bayley to Mickie’s boot. Mickie runs and boots Bayley down! “It’s good!” Mickie drags Bayley up for more kicks, then wraps on a chinlock. Fans rally again and Bayley gets up. Bayley fights out but Mickie wrangles her down by her hair. Alicia and Dana get in cheap shots while Mickie taunts Sasha. Tag to Alicia and Mickie holds Bayley. Bayley gets out of the way and Alicia’s boot hits Mickie! Alicia hurries after Bayley but Bayley slips out to hot tag Sasha! The Boss rallies with clotheslines and dropkicks. She blocks Alicia’s kick to give a knee. Alicia goes up and over to sunset flip, but Sasha rolls through to the Bank Statement crossface!
Houston is thunderous but Mickie breaks up the submission. She tags back in and stomps away on Sasha. She drags Sasha up but Sasha fires off forearms! Sasha then goes acrobatic, only to get tripped up! Mickie boots Sasha down, covers, but Bayley breaks it! Alicia goes after Bayley but gets a saido suplex! Dana gets on the apron but gets hit down. Mickie kicks and throws Bayley out but Sasha rolls Mickie up! TWO, Mickie kicks low. She watns her DDT but Bayley tags in. Back stabber to Bayley2Belly! #LegitHuggable win!
Winners: Bayley & Banks, Bayley pinning
Alexa acts like she’s happy for the heroes, but surely she was hoping for a different finish. Either way, The Boss & Hug Connection are rolling on towards the New Year. Will the new year bring new titles for them to chase together?
Ronda confronts Alexa Bliss.
Some “managing” of the Division, the Riott Squad crossed a line! Alexa says she knew nothing of that attack. She sent Ruby and friends home tonight, and will address their actions later on. Good. Ronda can go after Nia and Tamina without having to worry. No, Alexa can’t let Ronda have at them like this. She will find Ronda a replacement for that match. Ronda refuses Alexa’s help, as The Goddess has no conscience. Ronda goes in search of her own partner, but who is there left to team with against the Samoan Dynasty?
Raw presents a Baron Corbin propaganda– er, highlight reel video.
The Lone Wolf, having first been appointed Constable by Stephanie McMahon, has “always strived to keep a level playing field” and does not stand for “megalomaniacal power” abuse. He called out Kurt Angle’s shortcomings and is now General Manager Elect. Corbin is “the true guiding light his brand needs.” He excels as a team player, and “knows when to delegate”, such as when he appointed Alexa Bliss Women’s Division GM. Corbin always thinks “big picture”. Be on the right side of history, be on Corbin’s side, “Raw’s Future Permanent General Manager”. Or else.
All this revisionist history aside, should Braun Strowman be okay to compete come TLC, Corbin will have to face the Monster Among Men in THE TLC Match. Will Strowman be able to ensure Corbin #GetsTheseHands?
Bobby Roode & Chad Gable visit Corbin in his office.
They want a rematch with the Authors of Pain for the Raw Tag Team Championships. They will do anything to get their hands on Drake Maverick for that act of disrespect. Corbin understands, he’s pissed off. But they lost, no excuses. Though if they want another shot, they need to win tonight against Drake Maverick. Wait seriously? What’s the catch? No catch, Roode. Don’t believe the rumors. Though, there is a condition: Gable and AoP are banned from ringside. Surprisingly, that sounds very fair. Roode & Gable accept. Will Roode get some GLORIOUS vengeance tonight?
Lucha House Party VS The Revival!
Since coming to Raw, Kalisto, Gran Metalik & Lince Dorado have gone 2-0, but under Lucha House Rules. Between numbers and speed, will the luchadores ever lose one of their own matches?
However, on the way out, Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder realize there’s “a failure to communicate.” Tag team wrestling tradition keeps getting lost in tradition. Maybe it’s the masks in the way. Or maybe it’s just a lack of respect. But that doesn’t matter because they’ll make it plain and simple. If LHP won’t respect tag team rules, this will be a singles match! Or, not. This is Lucha House Rules again, but three on one!? The bell rings and Dawson starts with Metalik.
Dawson kicks then whips Metalik but Metalik handsprings. Dawson dodges but gets a dropkick and scoop slam. Metalik tags Lince and Lince tags Kalisto. And the splashes begin with the boosted splash, planking splash, an then a cover. TWO as Dawson survives. Dawson grabs Kalisto’s mask and whips him, but Lince tags in. Dawson uppercuts Kalisto then goes after Metalik, but he sees Lince coming. Dash distracts Lince, and Dawson clobbers him! Dawson drops legs and elbows and headbutts. Cover, ONE, but Dawson keeps on Lince. ONE, and Dawson asks for a pause. Dawson drags Lince up but fans “Lucha! Lucha!” Dawson puts Lince in the Gory Special! Lince endures and pops out, to sunset flip! Then he crawls past Dawson, only to be caught. Lince slips out of the back suplex but Dawson goes after Kalisto!
Metalik comes in, Dawson chases after but runs into a SUPERKICK! Dash gets up but he gets an alley-oop dropkick! Lince wrecks Dash with a dropkick! Kalisto runs in to slingshot and springboard onto Dash! Lince’s up, big crossbody! Then tag to Kalisto and he tags Metalik. Salida del Sol, then Metalik tightrope swanton! Cover, Lucha House Party win!
Winners: Lucha House Party, Metalik pinning
Is this unfair? Is this karma for the #TopGuys acting so superior? Whichever it is, the fiesta continues! What will it take for The Revival to slow down the lucha libre?
Baron Corbin meets with an assistant.
Where has this guy been? Corbin asked for this over an hour ago! But he won’t fire the aid, because the gift is perfect. Now go get ready for Drew McIntyre Appreciation Day. Go! What special gift did Corbin commemorate to the Scottish Terminator?
Baron Corbin is in the ring!
The GM Elect mentioned a special occasion, and is here to kick it off. Two weeks at TLC, Strowman will surely forfeit their TLC match and Corbin will become true General Manager. From Mr. Money in the Bank to championship level superstar to Constable to GM. He is proof that if you’re born better, you can achieve anything. Corbin does admit his journey comes with thorns in his side, like The Shield, Kurt Angle, Finn Balor and Braun Strowman. But with the help of this man, Corbin has overcome his obstacles. Therefore, tonight is Drew McIntyre Appreciation Night! Roll footage!
“Can you feel that? The balance of power has shifted!” McIntyre may not have been what everyone wanted, but he is what everyone in the WWE needed. McIntyre has broken The Shield, broken Angle and battered both Balor and Elias. He swore to take over, “Do you believe me now?!” And with that, Corbin introduces McIntyre to the ring! McIntyre joins Corbin as he himself prepares for a match at TLC with Finn Balor! That aside, Corbin thanks McIntyre for all the hard work and support. But this event cannot conclude without commemorating McIntyre’s work. Corbin presents McIntyre with a special medal. And now that Raw is rid of Angle, McIntyre is the new gold medalist: He is the recipient of Raw’s Medal of Excellence!
McIntyre thanks Corbin, and this honor means so much to him. But he was just doing what no one else was strong enough to do. He stamped out weakness and complacency. Months ago, “superstars” were playing on phones and playing games. They had no passion to reach the top, they only wanted a paycheck and a social media following! “Not on my damn roster!” McIntyre is forming Raw in his image as “The home of the strong, the mighty” and those workhorses willing to work seven days a week. And this medal is proof he’s doing a good job. That brings McIntyre to Finn Balor. Finn is the “voice of these pathetic people”. But the truth is, Finn’s “nothing more than a boy in a man’s world.” At TLC, McIntyre will hurt Finn, break his spirit and- Wait, is that Dolph Ziggler?!
The Show Off heads down the ramp with a curious look on his face. Is McIntyre forgetting their deal? Where was Ziggler’s part in that video package? They dominated as brains and brawn and they broke the Shield. Did his invite get lost in the mail or something? McIntyre hates to break it to Ziggler, but the truth is, Ziggler was never invited in the first place. He’s sorry, but Ziggler no longer meets the height requirements. Is this too much? Ziggler thought he was the brains? No, McIntyre was brains, brawn, talent and “the whole damn package.” This partnership is no longer useful. Ziggler was just to help McIntyre reach a prominent position, and that is something Ziggler accomplished! So thanks, Dolph! Now go on, you can leave any time.
Or is that not good enough for Ziggler? Is Ziggler gonna cry? Ziggler should kiss McIntyre’s feet. McIntyre is why Ziggler was relevant again for the first time in ten YEARS! Ziggler drops the mic, to throw hands! And he gets McIntyre with a ZIGZAG! But Corbin won’t stand for this. Ziggler won’t ruin Drew McIntyre Appreciation Night! He has a match with McIntyre, tonight! A referee hurries to the ring and this match begins after the break!
Drew McIntyre VS Dolph Ziggler!
Raw returns as McIntyre talks trash to Ziggler. Ziggler headbutts McIntyre back! McIntyre blocks the superkick to get a takedown and then stomps away on Ziggler. McIntyre catapults Ziggler into a post, and then Ziggler tumbles to the floor outside! The ref checks on Ziggler but McIntyre goes out to fetch him. McIntyre drags Ziggler up and chops him around the corner. McIntyre stalks Ziggler and lifts him with a fireman’s carry. Ziggler is dead weight as McIntyre takes him all the way up the steps and dumps him in the ring. McIntyre looms over Ziggler as he stomps the hand. McIntyre then brings Ziggler around for an armlock. Fans rally for Ziggler as he endures the hold.
Ziggler gets up and throws hands. McIntyre throws Ziggler down by his hair and puts the armlock back on. McIntyre grinds his forearm into Ziggler’s chin, saying “It didn’t have to be this way, Dolph.” Fans still rally and Ziggler fights up again. Ziggler kicks a leg out, then throws hands. Ziggler chops McIntyre again and again, then runs, but McIntyre counters the satellite DDT with a Northern Lights! McIntyre drags Ziggler up and chops him against the ropes. He dumps Ziggler out of the ring and then takes a microphone. “You know what? Maybe I still have a soft spot for you, Dolph.” McIntyre will pretend Ziggler is Finn Balor, as he rams Ziggler into apron, barrier and back again! Then a SPINEBUSTER on the ground!
McIntyre grins as he soaks up the heat. He stalks Ziggler and put shim back in the ring. McIntyre dares Dolph to get up. Ziggler does, but McIntyre easily counter CHOPS Ziggler off his feet. But then Finn Balor appears! Finn and McIntyre stare down while we go to break.
Raw returns as Ziggler chops away on McIntyre. McIntyre chops Ziggler back, then runs in, but into a back elbow. Ziggler boots McIntyre, but McIntyre still gets Ziggler with the back elbow and inverted Alabama Slam! Cover, TWO!! Ziggler still lives and McIntyre is frustrated. McIntyre drags Ziggler up and suplexes him onto the top rope. McIntyre chops Ziggler again then climbs up to join him. He clubs Ziggler on the chest, then takes a moment to soak up heat. McIntyre grins as he prepares a superplex, but Ziggler fights back. Ziggler clubs away and throws McIntyre down. Ziggler leaps, satellite DDT! He crawls to a cover, TWO!! McIntyre lives but that was close!
Ziggler and McIntyre drag themselves up, but McIntyre runs at Ziggler. Ziggler elbows McIntyre then dumps him out of the ring! Fans rally and Ziggler gets on the apron. Ziggler leaps at McIntyre to knock him down! And he still throws furious right hands! McIntyre gets up but Ziggler puts him into barriers. Ziggler chops McIntyre then bumps him off barriers, only for McIntyre to fire off a headbutt! McIntyre grits his teeth and drags Ziggler up, to straddle him on the barriers! Ziggler goes down in pain but McIntyre drags him back up. McIntyre puts Ziggler in but the ref is part of the collision. Finn hits McIntyre with a shotgun dropkick! McIntyre is down and Finn gets away with it.
A ring count begins, but McIntyre is writhing. The count passes 5 by the time McIntyre gets to the apron but he can’t get in just yet. McIntyre’s in at 9.5, SUPERKICK from Ziggler!! Cover, Ziggler wins!!
Winner: Ziggler, by pinfall
Finn may have the assist, but Drew McIntyre Appreciation Night is still ruined with McIntyre’s loss! Ziggler has the W tonight, will Finn be able to do the same at TLC?
Backstage interview with a seething Drew McIntyre.
Is it really okay for him to shun former friend Dolph Ziggler, especially when Finn Balor is targeting him? First of, McIntyre made it very clear Ziggler was never a friend, simply a means to an end. And now he’s an enemy just like Finn! Ziggler isn’t celebrating, he’s terrified. Ziggler knows how twisted McIntyre can be! He tried to use McIntyre as a way up the mountain, but McIntyre IS the mountain! As for Finn, “he’s a marked man.” Will Finn regret angering the Scottish Terminator?
Ladies and Gentlemen, Elias.
The Drifter is in Houston, and plays his guitar before he asks as always, “Who Wants to Walk With Elias?!” Houston sounds ready to. Elias has searched for Bobby Lashley all day, because he wants to wrap a guitar on Lashley’s head. But Lashley is harder to find than Carmelo Anthony. And the reason Lashley and Lio Rush are hiding is because they fear The Living Truth. Elias feels the fear inside Lashley. But at TLC, there will be no hiding, because “the Almighty Bobby Lashley” will learn that WWE really means “Walk With Elias”!
As for tonight, Elias still has a song. So please hold your applause until after. Elias begins, but Lio Rush loudly interrupts. Because he is presenting Bobby Lashley himself! Lio knows Houston loves Elias’ songs, but the spotlight belongs to Lashley. Elias felt Lashley’s strength last week, and will feel it “again and again” at TLC, because Lashley “is like a Greek god!” Lashley, hit them with the side pose. And now, the double guns. And yes, the double buns! Elias has had enough, and hurries out of the ring and up the ramp! Lashley is ready and kicks Elias down. Lashley clubs away and rains down rights. Then he throws Elias at the LED but Elias turns it around to send Lashley into them! Elias grabs his guitar, and swings at Lio! Lio gets away, and so does Lashley! Elias returns to the stage, feeling his moment has passed.
But then Lio returns, and gets BLASTED with the guitar! Because Finn sent Lio that way! Finn has helped Ziggler and helped Elias. Is this a sign of a new Anti-Corbin alliance?
Jinder Mahal meets Baron Corbin.
The Modern Day Maharaja wants Corbin to keep from being stressed out by all this. Shanti, Shanti. Corbin has done a great job putting Strowman and Finn in their place. And at TLC, Corbin will end it all when he becomes GM. Who cares if people think Strowman will still appear? Let Mahal finish Finn for him. Corbin likes that. Strowman is a one-armed man now, who cares if he makes it to TLC? The match is set, will Mahal stop Finn’s revolution?
That aside, Corbin now meets with Heath Slater & Rhyno. These two are friends and the inaugural SmackDown Tag Team champions. However, Corbin’s crunched some numbers and has come to a conclusion. What conclusion is that? Well there’s enough room on Raw now for one of them. What? Corbin will be fair, and allows one of them to quit now so the other can keep their job. What?! Slater can’t quit, he’s got kids! And Rhyno is an ECW legend. Well, Angle did have one good saying: Raw handles things in the ring. They face each other tonight, and the winner keeps his job. What?! How can Corbin do this to the One Man Band and his Manbeast best friend?
Bobby Roode VS Drake Maverick!
The GLORIOUS One and Chad Gable earned their right at the Raw Tag Team Championships, but then the Authors of Pain’s manager had to go and pee all over the match. Well, he pee’d all over Roode’s robe, and that distracted Roode enough to cost his team the match. Now Roode looks to get even while also earning another shot. Can Roode do it? Or will Maverick find a way to rain on that, too?
Maverick, dressed in his own AoP gear, wants Roode to show him some mercy. Perhaps Maverick realizes peeing was a step too far. But then he throws the vest at Roode! Roode isn’t bothered as he punches Maverick down! Roode puts Maverick in a corner and stomps a mudhole into him. But then we see AoP attack Gable!! They throw Gable into cartons! Corbin stops the attack, by remaking this match a Handicap match!?
3 on 2 Handicap Match: Drake Maverick & The Authors of Pain VS Bobby Roode & Chad Gable!
Granted, Corbin saves Gable, but he’s just doomed Roode! Akam & Rezar storm their way tot he ring while Corbin taunts Gable. Roode hurries to grab Maverick and clubs away. He can still finish this before Akam & Rezar appear. Maverick hits Roode back, but Roode gets the GLORIOUS DDT! But Akam & Rezar break the cover! They club away on Roode, and then put Roode into a post! Rezar drags Roode out and clubs away on Roode. He trash talks in Albanian as he hammers away. Rezar drags Roode over and tags in Akam. The AoP combine for the sidewalk slam stomp! Akam hammers away on Roode then drives in a knee. Fans rally for Roode, and here comes Gable! Gable’s in bad shape but it’s enough that he’s here to get the AoP to leave Roode alone.
Gable manages to fight both members of AoP, but they’re still too much. They hit Gable with an atomic drop to boot! Roode is up but he gets squashed in the corner. Rezar and Akam bring Roode and Gable up, for Super Collider! Then Maverick tags in so he can get the cover! Maverick & AoP win!
Winners: Drake Maverick & The Authors of Pain, Maverick pinning
One way or another, the fix was in with Corbin on AoP’s side. Roode & Gable don’t get another shot, but who will rise up to challenge the Raw Tag Team Champions?
A quarantine unit comes out, with Dean Ambrose!
The Lunatic Fringe wears a gas mask the same as his swat team, because he does not want to be contaminated by the WWE Universe that now disgusts him. Ambrose hits the ring and takes a mic, but he doesn’t take off the mask. He apologizes for the “drastic measures” but he can’t be too safe in a “slum” like Houston. Ambrose is using this to protect himself from the diseases of the fans, but from that “madman”, Seth Rollins. Ambrose does take off the mask to properly explain that his security is to stop an “unprovoked” attack from Rollins. Well, mostly unprovoked. Rollins lost control after the things Ambrose said, but that’s because Rollins is “needy and emotional”. Rollins always needed or wanted something from Ambrose, much like the fans. Fans always pester Ambrose for something.
But Ambrose asks if anyone has any idea how it’s like to live with a control freak like Rollins. And of course everyone does. If anyone here had any guts, they’d slap that certain someone in the face. But no, no one here has the guts to do that, they’re all too weak. Rollins is weak, he is the “biggest scumbag” but fans love Rollins because Rollins makes them feel important. Just look at The Shield. The Shield used to be something to be proud of. But all Rollins or Roman Reigns cared about was being role models to fans. Fans say “We Want Rollins!” Well too bad, you don’t always get what you want! Rollins and Roman changed, they sold out. Ambrose is the only constant in this industry, and with integrity! Fans disagree but Ambrose says the only thing he’s guilty of is being naive.
But no more! Ambrose proudly stands alone as THE moral compass of WWE! Some people probably don’t know what that means, schools ain’t too good here in Houston. But at TLC, Ambrose could take the Intercontinental Championship by force, but that’s too easy. Ambrose wants Rollins to understand what’s coming. Rollins is going to mess up and go into a backspin. And then Rollins will lose control of himself, but no one will worry. That title will fall safely into Ambrose’s hands. But then “BURN IT DOWN!” begins and Ambrose panics. He sends security up the ramp but Rollins comes from the crowd! Rollins hits the guards on that end and then dumps Ambrose out of the ring! Rollins welcomes the rest of the guards and he takes them all down! He even powerbombs one out onto the rest!
Ambrose is up, Rollins DIVES! Ambrose uses a guard as a shield and retreats! Rollins gives chase and they brawl among the fans! Rollins gets Ambrose trapped in his own jacket, and then brings him back to the barriers. Ambrose hits back and the brawl continues. Ambrose throws Rollins over to ringside, but then Rollins punches him back. Rollins uses the barriers to springboard and dive on Ambrose! Fans fire up as Rollins throws Ambrose back to ringside. Ambrose grabs a gas mask and clubs Rollins in the face with it! Ambrose brings Rollins up to him him again and again and again with the filter! Fans chant “You Suck!” at Ambrose but he doesn’t care. “Why do you always have to be right?!” Ambrose keeps kicking Rollins around, then gives him a Dirty Deeds to the ground!
Fans boo and jeer while Ambrose insists he has integrity. Ambrose forces the rest of his henchmen to haul Rollins into the ring for him. Ambrose circles Rollins as he tells all the fans off. The fans boo and jeer more, but Ambrose drags Rollins up for one more Dirty Deeds! Ambrose leaves Rollins behind, but he’ll surely be back for more come TLC. Will the Lunatic take the title from the Architect? Or can Rollins recover and find a way to retain?
Backstage interview with Nia Jax & Tamina.
They know that Ronda Rousey has a new tag team partner for tonight’s match. It will be Ember Moon! Nia doesn’t seem intimidated at all. She and Tamina thought it was going to be Charly. But that’s just to make a point: it’s ridiculous to team anyone with Ronda. Tamina was always attacking Ember from behind so she wouldn’t have to see Ember’s face. And Nia promises to rearrange Ember’s face, like she did Becky Lynch. Then Ronda will be all alone, and she’s not 100% by any means. This will be a preview of Nia’s historic path back to what’s HERS: the Raw Women’s Championship. Will Ronda and Ember stand a chance against the sadistic Samoan Dynasty?
Rhyno VS Heath Slater!
These two have become close friends ever since joining forces on SmackDown to become the inaugural SmackDown Tag Team Champions. However, Constable Corbin claims Raw can’t keep them both. Will these two remain friends after one of them loses their jobs?
The bell rings and the two friends discuss the situation. But Rhyno hits first! He puts Slater in a corner and fires off! Rhyno reels Slater out for a lariat! Rhyno puts Slater in another corner and chops him down. Fans say “Heath’s Got Kids!” but Rhyno whips Slater corner to corner to tackle him! He does it again but Slater dodges and hits a neckbreaker! Cover, SLATER WINS!
Winner: Heath Slater, by pinfall; keeps his spot on Raw
The Manbeast is shocked! He is no longer on Raw, and perhaps no longer friends with Slater. Will Rhyno be able to go back to SmackDown? Or will he be forced to retire?
Baron Corbin applauds Heath Slater.
Slater still wants to help Rhyno, Rhyno has a family of his own. No, Slater needs to worry about doing his job. Which brings up the new uniform. Uniform? Slater isn’t a superstar anymore, he can have a much longer and better career as a referee. Slater’s between a rock and a hard place, but he does need this job. Will the One Referee Band be able to follow orders?
Finn Balor VS Jinder Mahal w/ The Singh Brothers!
The Extraordinary Man has helped begin a small but effective rebellion against Baron Corbin tonight. Will the Modern Day Maharaja make Finn pay on Corbin’s behalf? Or will the revolution be televised as Finn heads for TLC?
The bell rings and fans chant “Too Sweet! Woop Woop!” Finn and Mahal tie up, Mahal puts Finn in a corner. Mahal rams his shoulder in but stops at 4 to Shanti. Finn hits him back and chops! Finn kicks and headlocks Mahal but Mahal powers out. Mahal swings but Finn dodges, only for Mahal to hit the back elbow on the other end. Mahal drags Finn up into a headlock and grinds him to the mat. Finn endures as he gets up but Mahal scoops him to hotshot him on the ropes. Finn slumps out of the ring while Mahal uses Shanti to keep focus, and we go to break.
Raw returns and Mahal has Finn down in a half nelson chinlock. Finn gets up as fans rally for him, but Mahal wrangles him back down. Mahal cranks back but Finn gets up again. Finn fights but Mahal puts him in a corner. Finn boots Mahal then hits a forearm! Mahal stays up so Finn runs to hit another forearm! Mahal gets to a corner and Finn chops him on the run. Finn whips but Mahal reverses. Finn goes up and over to trip Mahal and hit double stomps! Mahal boots Finn back then hops up, but Finn kicks him down! Finn runs and hits a slingblade! Then a shotgun dropkick! Mahal drops down in the drop zone, but the Singhs start getting involved! One distracts the ref while the other shoves Finn down! And they celebrate with Bollywood dance moves. But wait, Apollo Crews clears them out!?
Mahal is furious with Apollo and kicks him down! But Finn FLIES! Finn grits his teeth as he puts Mahal back in. Finn blasts Mahal with another shotgun dropkick! Mahal’s back in that drop zone and Finn climbs up. Coup de Grace!! Cover, Finn wins!
Winner: Finn Balor, by pinfall
The rebellion grows as Apollo helps The Extraordinary Man! Is Corbin’s tyranny going to crumble with this many superstars against him? Or will it matter if Strowman is a no-show at TLC?
Backstage interview with Finn Balor.
It’s been a crazy night for him. He helped Ziggler win against McIntyre, he helped Elias get even with Lio Rush, and Apollo Crews of all people helped him against Mahal and the Singh Brothers. Finn knows it’s been crazy, but then McIntyre strikes!! McIntyre blasts Finn into kegs and then rains down rights! Referees do their best to get McIntyre off Finn, but McIntyre tells Finn that he’ll finish this soon enough. McIntyre leaves, only to come back for more! The Scottish Psychopath is ready to end Finn once and for all, will Finn even make it to TLC?
Lars Sullivan speaks.
“It doesn’t matter which brand I go to. I will wreak havoc a magnitude of which you’ve never seen.” No one has seen a freak like the Leviathan. Which brand will get this Mile High Monster on their roster? And which roster will regret it?
Ronda Rousey & Ember Moon VS Nia Jax & Tamina!
The Queen of Harts was the target of the Riott Squad once again, and that put a stop to the scheduled opening match. However, the Baddest Woman on the Planet is only all the more eager to go after Nia and Tamina. Now she has the Prophecy of Flame on her side, can they both get even with the Samoan Dynasty? Or will the Eclipse be broken on the road to Nia’s redemption?
But before Ember even appears, Nia and Tamina go after Ronda! They attack 2v1 but Ember hurries to make the save. She springboards and crossbodies on Tamina! Ember goes after Nia, but Nia whips her away. Ember hops up for a flying code breaker! Ronda roundhouses Nia out of the ring but keeps in pursuit. Ember gets on the apron to hit Tamina with a sliding boot! Ronda leaps on Nia for a flying forearm! Ronda is still sore physically speaking but she and Ember have control of the ring! They dare Nia and Tamina to return while we go to one last break.
Raw returns once more as Nia has Ember. Nia biels Ember by her hair! Nia taunts Ronda then tags in Tamina. Tamina mugs Ember in the corner, then rocks her with an uppercut. She keeps Ember up to whip her, but Ember lands on her feet through the hip toss. Ember arm-drags Tamina, then hits a handspring forearm. Then, tag to Ronda! Fans fire up as Ronda throws Tamina down. Ember tags back in and Ronda hits Tamina with a knee. Ember adds a sliding complete shot! Cover, TWO! Ember hits another handspring forearm on Tamina, but then Nia gets in to protest. This distracts Ember, and she turns around into Tamina’s SUPERKICK! Cover, TWO! Nia grows frustrated but Tamina brings Ember back over.
Tamina stomps away on Ember, then tags in Nia. The Samoan Dynasty mug Ember. Nia teases punching Ember with the Facebreaker punch, but she instead hits Ember in the stomach. Nia toys with Ember and taunts Ronda before putting Ember in a cobra clutch. Ember endures as Nia thrashes her about. Ember fights out and hits a jawbreaker. She hurries for her corner but Nia powerbomb lifts Ember! But Ember fights out and spikes Nia with a huricanrana! Nia stops the tag by hitting Ronda! Then she throws Ember to Tamina to get cheap shots in the corner. Nia and Tamina soak up the heat as they tag again. Tamina headbutts Ember then drops knee after knee. She whips Ember into the corner, but then misses! Nia gets knocked down and Ember crawls for Ronda. Tamina grabs a foot but gets an enziguri! Hot tag to Ronda!
Ronda rallies with clotheslines and knees! She boots Tamina down then dares Nia to tag in. Nia doesn’t want to, but Tamina makes her! TLC comes early as Nia reluctantly gets in the ring. She circles with Ronda, but then quickly tags out to Tamina. Fans boo and jeer but Ronda still drags Nia into the ring! Tamina gets in, but Ronda fires off the strikes! Ronda hits a big forearm smash, then runs for the shining wizard! Cover, but Nia breaks it. Ember comes in and kicks away! Ronda roundhouses Nia, too, but Tamian rolls Ronda up! TWO, and Ronda throws Tamina with a judo throw. Ember hits the Eclipse! And Ronda finishes it with the armbar!! Tamina taps, Ronda & Ember win!
Winners: Ember Moon & Ronda Rousey, Rousey by submission
There was no fear or quit in the champion or the War Goddess, but there was plenty of both in the Samoan Dynasty. Who will stand tall when Ronda and Nia finally settle their score?
After the strange, disappointing and even upsetting episode that Raw was last week, this week only barely manages to be just a little better. In fact, the margin is probably negligible in the grand scheme of things, especially in my personal scoring.
First, the Tag Team Division continues to suffer. Can Vince STOP misusing Lucha House Rules? This would be different if the LHP were HEELS, but no, Vince is probably pissing himself over a joke only HE understands. And that’s fitting considering the piss gag is his idea, too. Thankfully that didn’t happen this time with the Authors of Pain. Instead, it’s another Corbin power abuse that helps Maverick survive Roode’s wrath. Maverick in a match finally gives reason for an AoP cosplay, but it would’ve had more impact if he didn’t have it until now. Either way, AoP go without challengers for now, which might be for the best until Raw sorts itself out. Then poor Rhyno jobs and is “released”, only for Slater to be a referee now. I’m foreseeing Slater having to endure ref bumps until he snaps and joins the rebellion.
I was hoping they wouldn’t try that “open forum” again but they did. At least we got a good match out of it, and Bayley openly saying the Women’s Tag titles need to happen, just like fans have been wanting. Bayley & Sasha can still make a run at those should the titles become a thing, but if Alexa Bliss is the person in charge when it happens, setting up her friends for those titles is just another form of The Authority. But I suppose it’s where things are headed. At the same time, is this a sign Alexa’s in-ring retirement is inevitable? That’s a shame, but she does make a better Heel boss than Corbin. Then the Ronda VS Nia story of tonight was alright. The swerve of that opening match was pretty good, the main event tonight was great, and I’m still confident Ronda wins.
This choice of making Ambrose go on about germs and filth is weird, but if the gas mask and henchmen stick around, I might be up for it. And of course Rollins attacks, but I was surprised Ambrose stands tall here. Maybe Ambrose wins, then Rollins chases the title towards Wrestlemania. As for the main story tonight, Corbin and crew against everyone else, there were some interesting developments. Ziggler VS McIntyre is the one part that makes sense. Finn helping Ziggler and Elias and then getting help back, I’m thinking we have an alliance to stop Corbin from winning. Strowman is still iffy as far as a TLC appearance, which is good for drama’s sake, but WWE needs to take advantage of TLC’s No DQ and turn it into a huge brawl even as Strowman appears. Then Finn and friends help Strowman stop Corbin and crew taking over!
My Score: 7.9/10
Mitchell’s NJPW AXS TV Results: Power Struggle 2018 Part 2!
NJPW Power Struggle continues as Tetsuya Naito once again battles Zack Sabre Jr! Will Tranquilo #JustTapOut? Or will ZSJ lost to The Ungovernable Charisma?
This coverage of Power Struggle will be as broadcast by AXS TV.
Gifs can be found at http://frentique.tumblr.com/
- Super Junior Tag League Finals Triple Threat: El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru VS Roppongi 3K VS Bushi & Shingo Takagi; RPG3K wins the 2018 Super Junior Tag League.
- Tetsuya Naito VS Zack Sabre Jr; Naito wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
NJPW and AXS TV set the scene!
Los Ingobernables de Japon continues to war with Suzuki-Gun! The leader of LIJ, Tetsuya Naito, has lost to the Submission Master, Zack Sabre Jr, twice this year in both the New Japan Cup and the G1 Climax! ZSJ angered Naito when he picked the bones of Evil after a vicious attack from Chris Jericho. Naito looks to get back at ZSJ for both Evil and those defeats, but ZSJ talks of retiring Naito himself. Who will win in this third time around in 2018?
Meanwhile, the Super Junior Tag League Tournament bring together familiar foes as the factions of LIJ, Suzuki-Gun and Chaos battle again! The IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions are still Desperado and Yoshinobu Kanemaru, and they look to show true dominance over the division. However, Roppongi 3K’s Sho & Yoh look to repeat as tournament winners while Bushi has LIJ’s newest member, Shingo Takagi, by his side. Who comes out of this finals match primed to rule over the Junior Heavyweight Tag Division?
Super Junior Tag League Finals Triple Threat: El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru VS Roppongi 3K VS Bushi & Shingo Takagi!
The round robin format of this tournament makes it so that the teams with the best records qualify for this tournament climax, and this year it ended up being three! All three teams have a 10-0 record going in, impressive to say the least. And naturally, the winners of this tournament, if they’re not the champions, get a shot to face the champions for the belts in the future. Will Sho & Yoh become back-to-back tournament champs? Will the tag champs come out as supreme rulers of Junior Heavyweight Tag wrestling? Or will this new combination of ungovernable stars be the key to victory?
Suzuki-Gun’s duo bring their belts, and a bottle of whiskey for Kanemaru. Kanemaru tags a swig then spits it to the sky, before attacking Bushi! Desperado goes after Shingo, but Sho & Yoh go after them! The match starts with the bell and Suzuki-Gun throws Yoh out of the ring. Kanemaru keeps on Sho with an eye rake, and Desperado adds a kick. Suzuki-Gun mug Sho then double whip, but he hits back! Desperado kicks Sho and chops him. Desperado runs, Sho ducks and Yoh comes back! They drop toehold and dropkick Desperado, then double dropkick Kanemaru. LIJ returns but they get dropkick’d out. Yoh goes back to Desperado while fans rally up. Sho keeps on Desperado with a big scoop slam. Sho drags Desperado up but Desperado rakes eyes.
This kind of Triple Threat Tag, anyone can tag anyone so long as it doesn’t create a match-up of the same team. Therefore, Bushi is allowed to tag in from Desperado. He goes after Sho, then drags him up for a neckbreaker. Cover, TWO! Bushi keeps his cool as he tags in Shingo. Shingo hits Yoh for good measure before bringing Sho up. Sho chops, but Shingo chops back. Sho leans against ropes, but Shingo double chops him down! Shingo drags Sho up and whips, follows after and rams his knee into Sho. Then he suplexes Sho up and over, floats to cover, TWO! Tag to Bushi and LIJ double whip. They double hip toss and combine back senton and leg drop. Bushi covers, TWO! Bushi uses his shirt to choke Sho, but lets up at 4.
Fans cheer while Bushi clubs Sho. Bushi runs but Sho hits him with the kitchen sink knee! Hot tag to Yoh! Yoh rallies on LIJ, ducks the enziguri and dragon screws Shingo. Yoh gives Bushi a backbreaker to necbreaker and kips up! Fans rally up as Yoh back elbows Bushi in a corner. Yoh suplexes but Bushi slips out. Bushi fires off forearms, then runs, but Desperado trips him up. Kanemaru tags in off Bushi and goes after Yoh. Desperado drags Bushi down to beat him up while Kanemaru hits Shingo. Bushi and Shingo go into barriers while Kanemaru whips Yoh. Kanemaru gives Yoh a kitchen sink, then tosses Yoh out. Desperado uses the backing of a chair to SMACK Yoh in the head. Then he whips Yoh into barriers! Desperado feeds Yoh to Kanemaru for a scoop slam.
Kanemaru grinds his foot on Yoh’s face, then tags Desperado. Desperado kicks Yoh down, and taunts Sho to return. Desperado chops Yoh back, but Yoh chops back. Yoh keeps firing strikes but Desperado shrugs it off. They go back and forth, but Desperado rakes eyes. Desperado runs but Shingo gets him to stop. Desperado hits Shingo, but turns around into Yoh’s calf kick! Hot tag to Kanemaru and he stops Sho from tagging in. Suzuki-Gun work together to start a corner train, and then Desperado cradles Yoh for Kanemaru to shotgun dropkick-start the slam! Cover, but LIJ breaks it. LIJ goes after everyone else, and double whip Kanemaru. Kanemaru holds ropes and dumps Shingo out. He puts Bushi on the apron and Desperado knocks him off. Kanemaru helps Desperado build speed to DIVE on LIJ! Desperado ends up safely on the announce desk!
Fans fire up, even if it’s for Suzuki-Gun. Desperado returns as Kanemaru brings Yoh up. Suplex to inverted DDT! Cover, TWO! Kanemaru grows frustrated, but he keeps on Yoh. Yoh hits back and they brawl with forearms and European Uppercuts. Kanemaru tilt-o-whirls for a DDT! He drags Yoh up again, but Yoh gets him back with a Falcon Arrow! Yoh is too sore to make the cover, and we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns as fans rally up. Yoh and Kanemaru stir but Desperado attacks Sho! Desperado comes in but Bushi hits him first. Bushi grabs Yoh and throws him to the LIJ corner. Shingo tags in off Yoh, and then goes after Kanemaru’s inner thigh. Desperado saves Kanemaru by whipping Shingo but Shingo reverses. Shingo then starts up a clothesline train, first hitting Desperado then going corner to corner to hit Kanemaru. Desperado staggers into a shoulder from Shingo! Fans fire up as Shingo grabs Kanemaru. Sho comes in but gets caught, DDT and complete shot! Shingo goes back to Kanemaru for another suplex, but Kanemaru slips out. Kanemaru has a waistlock but Shingo fights out. Shingo whips and pop-up Death Valley Driver on Kanemaru! Cover, TWO!! Kanemaru barely survives but Shingo is not bothered.
Muscle Dragon Shingo stalks Kanemaru, but misses in the corner. Kanemaru misses, too, and Bushi hits a knee! Bushi feeds Kanemaru to the spinebuster, adding a backstabber! Cover, but RPG3K break it! RPG3K is thrown out and LIJ coordinates. Shingo lifts Kanemaru in a wheelbarrow, but Desperado intercepts Bushi! Kanemaru victory rolls, TWO! Bushi fights Desperado off to slingshot headscissor Desperado! Shingo runs but to a basement dropkick! Kanemaru staggers into a tag from Sho! Sho then rocks Kanemaru with a right, and throws Kanemaru out. Sho runs at Shingo for a big corner clothesilne. He whips but Shingo reverses, and they collide with clotheslines. Neither man falls so they try again. Shingo runs but into a dropkick!
Sho fires up, as do the fans. He deadlifts Shingo but Shingo fights back. Sho runs, but Shingo rocks him with an elbow and an uppercut! Shingo lifts Sho in the chicken wing, but Sho slips out. Shingo runs, but into RPG3K double knees! Yoh takes out Bushi while Sho brings Shinogo back up. Backstabber feeds into the shotgun dropkick! RPG3K fire up and stalk Shingo. Shingo stands but Bushi stops Yoh with a backstabber of his own. Sho gets Bushi in a deadlift German Suplex! Desperado spears Sho, but can’t spear Shingo! Shingo and Desperado brawl, but Desperado rakes the eyes. Shingo still waistlocks Desperado, Desperado kicks Sho but Shingo shoves Desperado into Sho. Sho and Desperado turn around into Shingo’s clotheslines!
Shingo lifts Sho in the chicken wing, for the Gory Bomb! Shingo gets up and builds speed, to clothesline from hell! Cover, TWO!? Sho lives and Shingo can’t believe it! Shingo roars as he drags Sho back up. He lifts Sho with a wristclutch, but Yoh SUPERKICKS! RPG3K hit 3K!! Cover, but the ref is yanked out! Kanemaru gets in and kicks away on Yoh! He stomps away on Sho, then drags Sho up. Desperado is in with a belt, and he clobbers Sho! Desperado drags Shingo over to a corner and uses him to tag in. Then he goes back to Sho while Kanemaru takes out Bushi. Desperado lifts Sho in the torture rack, for the slam! Cover, TWO!? Sho lives again! Desperado is furious and vows to end this.
Desperado brings Sho up in the double underhook, but Bushi jumps over the ref to use the GREEN MIST! You SUPERKICKS Bushi! Kanemaru goes after Yoh, but Yoh ducks the Whiskey Mist to dropkick Kanemaru out! Yoh builds speed and FLIES onto Bushi and Kanemaru! Sho is up, and clobbers Desperado! Sho drags Desperado up again, powerbomb lift, double knees! Cover, TWO!! Desperado survives but fans are thunderous. Sho fires up and wants another, but he tucks the arms this time. Package driver, the Shock Arrow! Cover, RPG3K win!!
Winners: Roppongi 3K, Sho pinning
Sho & Yoh win their second Super Junior Tag League! And best of all, it was on the tag team champions! Can Sho & Yoh use this momentum to get the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag titles back?
Tetsuya Naito VS Zack Sabre Jr!
Los Ingobernables de Japon and Suzuki-Gun are not through with each other, and these two are far from through with each other on top of it. Will Naito make ZSJ Tranquilo? Or will ZJS make Naito #JustTapOut?
As always, Taka Michinoku takes up the mic before the match. He welcomes everyone to “Zack Sabre Time.” This is a special singles match between ZSJ and Naito. “Who is gonna win this one?!” ZSJ is the man who can finish you with any lock anytime, anywhere, who has the deadly Zack Driver, and when he locks on, you #JustTapOut! This wrestling master is Zack Sabreeeeee Junior~! So Naito, you will repeat the New Japan Cup and G1 Climax. You can’t beat Zack, so “come on over here!” Naito makes his entrance, and takes his time as always with undressing. ZSJ doesn’t let the mind games get to him, but we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns with the bell. Fans cheer for Naito as he circles with ZSJ. Naito and ZSJ tie up and ZSJ gets the headlock. ZSJ throws Naito but Naito shrugs it off. He and ZSJ circle again and feel it out. ZSJ gets a wristlock but Naito reverses quick, so ZSJ breaks and slips away. They circle again and tie up. ZSJ gets the arm again and wrenches for a hammerlock. Naito rolls and goes for a leg but ZSJ gets his legs into a deathlock. Naito manages to pop free and get a headlock, but ZSJ headscissors. ZSJ squeezes tight as Naito tries to escape. Naito moves around but ZSJ goes for an arm. Naito frees himself from the headscissors to go for an armbar. ZSJ moves around and gets a leg again, Bow ‘n’ Arrow! But Naito pops out to a cover, ONE, Tranquilo!
Naito rolls out to catch his breath but ZSJ stays in the ring. Naito takes his time returning, and circles with ZSJ again. They approach and tie up, and ZSJ brings Naito’s hands down to stand on one and wrench the other. ZSJ shifts to a headlock, then throws to the takeover. Naito endures and rolls ZSJ to a cover, ONE. Naito sits up and gets up, and powers out of the headlock. He arm-drags ZSJ around, then runs him over with an elbow to hit the basement dropkick! Naito poses but ZSJ runs in with a leaping triangle hold takedown! Naito gets a ropebreak but ZSJ lets go at 4. ZSJ takes a moment to catch his breath now while Naito bails out again. Naito comes back but ZSJ presses a knee down on him.
ZSJ loops Naito’s arm through the ropes and then a leg and uses them to pull in a modified Bow ‘n’ Arrow. ZSJ backs off at 4, so he can mock the LIJ posing. Naito sits up but ZSJ is on with the double wristlock, then top wristlock to stomp! Naito writhes but ZSJ circles him like a shark. ZSJ brings Naito up for a EuroUpper, but Naito chops back. ZSJ gives another EuroUpper, but Naito gives back a CHOP. That stuns ZSJ, but ZSJ still kicks and whips Naito. Naito reverses, then run sin. ZSJ puts him on the apron to sweep the legs! ZSJ goes after Naito on the ramp and uses a calf killer! Then he shifts to a modified half crab! ZSJ tortures the legs, then rams the knees on the ramp. ZSJ leaves Naito behind as the 20-count starts.
Naito slowly gets up but the count is at 16! He hurries and gets in at 19! ZSJ is on Naito again with another trapped leg toehold to a half crab! Then a heel hook, then a deep crab! ZSJ just keeps combining holds, such as a trapped arm and another deep crap. But Naito gets the ropes and is freed. Fans rally up as Naito gets to a corner. ZSJ stomps the legs, but Naito hits back. ZSJ kicks the legs but Naito hits back. They continue to go back and forth, a kick for a forearm and back again. Naito goes down after another kick to the leg, but he crawls to a corner. ZSJ runs in but into boots. Naito gives an atomic drop and running headscissors!
Both men are down as Naito tries to get feeling in his legs. Michinoku coaches ZSJ up but Naito stands first. Naito hits ZSJ with punches and kicks, then gets the dragon sleeper to backbreaker, and adds a basement dropkick! ZSJ gets to a corner, but Naito hits the jump kick and leg sweep. Naito slingshots but into the cravat! Naito arm-drags out, but ZSJ runs back in. ZSJ is put in a corner, but he boots Naito. Naito spits then spins ZSJ sideways for the draping neckbreaker! Naito then scoops ZSJ into the reverse DDT! Cover, TWO! Naito has things back in his favor as we go to break.
NJPW on AXS returns, and Naito gives ZSJ elbows in the corner. Naito drives elbows into ZSJ even as ZSJ sits down. Then Naito hoists ZSJ up top and climbs up to join him. Naito drives in more elbows and then stands up for a SUPER STEINER! But ZSJ makes it a cradle into a leg lock, into an STF! ZSJ keeps shifting to modify the crossface, then keeps pushing with his weight. Naito pushes back and gets the ropebreak! ZSJ lets Naito go, and both men are down from exhaustion. Fans rally up, and ZSJ slowly stands. ZSJ grabs Naito’s leg for a spinning toehold. Naito clutches that bad leg, but ZSJ does the spinning tweak to his arm! ZSJ stalks Naito as he stands, and gives him a EuroUpper. Naito hits back with a forearm, but ZSJ gives another EuroUpper. Naito CHOPS ZSJ and sits him down.
ZSJ gets up to kick Naito in the leg again. Naito CHOPS, but ZSJ stays standing this time. ZSJ eggs Naito on so Naito fires off forearms until ZSJ sits down. Naito goes side to side for the basement dropkick! He brings ZSJ up but ZSJ gets a full nelson! Naito arm-drags ZSJ away but ZSJ comes back with another EuroUpper. ZSJ tries again but Naito back slides and back elbows to the tornado DDT! Naito keeps going, hammerlock and lift, GLORIA! Cover, TWO!! ZSJ lives but Naito keeps his cool. Naito brings ZSJ up again, wrenches the arm but ZSJ kicks it! Naito kicks back and then whips. ZSJ reveres and catches the lariat into an Octopus! Naito endures as he steps towards ropes. ZSJ shifts to go after the arm, then cradles to a Calf Killer!
Naito endures leg pain, but he rolls. ZSJ keeps him trapped for a calf slicer, but Naito fights with his free leg. But ZSJ grabs it to make it part stretch muffler! Naito gets free and gets another ropebreak! ZSJ lets Naito go but he grows frustrated. Fans rally for Naito again, but ZSJ gets up first. ZSJ EuroUppers Naito again and again and again, then even more in the corner. He throws Naito out to Penalty Kick him! Cover, TWO!! Naito survives, but barely. Michinoku keeps ZSJ focused as he gets up again. ZSJ lifts Naito but Naito slips out to waistlock. ZSJ elbows out and wants the Octopus, but Naito breaks free. Naito runs into an uppercut but enziguris, only for ZSJ to make it an ankle lock! ZSJ then reels Naito in but Naito standing switches, for a German Suplex!
Naito runs, DESTINO!! Cover, TWO!! ZSJ barely survives, but Naito keeps on him. Naito wrenches the arm but ZSJ drops down, only for Naito to sit on it! TWO and ZSJ drags Naito into the European Clutch! TWO but barely! ZSJ and Naito go to opposite ends as they stand up. ZSJ kicks but Naito catches it to enziguri back. Naito wrenches and tilt-o-whirls, but into ZSJ’s scoop! But Naito slips out to scoop ZSJ, brainbuster! Fans are thunderous as Naito wrenches and whirls, DESTINO! Cover, Naito wins!!
Winner: Tetsuya Naito, by pinfall
The Ungovernable finally wins against the Submission Master! Naito did not tap out and he didn’t fall to the Zack Driver, but can Naito use this to launch himself back towards a title?
Taka Michinoku explains that Zack only just arrived yesterday. This loss was because of jet lag! He was battling jet lag and an opponent at the same time. But ZSJ dares Naito to come to England and see if this still happens. ZSJ will even fight him in a pub if he wants.
As for Naito, he finally got his revenge. To be precise, Naito won in last year’s G1, but yes he did lose in the 2018 New Japan Cup and G1. Therefore, Naito is 2-2 against ZSJ all-time. Naito appreciates ZSj, because this match had no upside for him and yet he took it. He has Naito’s thanks, “Gracias, amigo.” When and where will there be a tiebreaker for their overall series?
Another great hour version of this event. While there wasn’t a lot of Super Junior Tag League coverage on AXS, this triple threat finals was great to see. It was all an impressive match and I was really impressed to see that RPG3K got to repeat. I really hope this means Sho & Yoh get those titles off of Desperado & Kanemaru, that would be great for them. The evolution of these two from being the Tempura Boyz to the gold ‘n’ silver duo has been great to see, and while they’ve already had the titles, getting the titles again would just add to their great growth. Naito VS ZSJ 4 was also great, just as good as their previous matches. I’m glad to see Naito won this time, it works for his story of coming back around strong towards the IWGP Intercontinental Championship.
My Score: 8.7/10
Mitchell’s ROH Results & Report! (12/1/18)
Ring of Honor Wrestling Television, Episode 376
The ROH World Tag Team Championships are on the line this close to Final Battle! Will SoCal Uncensored even make it to the Ladder Wars they declared?
- Kenny King VS Christopher Daniels; King wins.
- Jeff Cobb VS Josh Woods; Cobb wins.
- Hangman Adam Page VS Facade w/ Danni; Page wins.
- ROH World Tag Team Championships: SoCal Uncensored VS Guerrero Maya Jr. & Stuka Jr; SoCal Uncensored wins and advances to Final Battle’s Ladder War ROH World Tag Team Championship match.
PLAY BY PLAY
Last time on ROH…
The Briscoes and The Young Bucks battled to determine #1 contenders to the World Tag Team Championships, and it was another instant classic. However, the ending was marred by double disqualifications, so there is no one challenger for the titles. SoCal Uncensored’s Frankie Kazarian & Scorpio Sky wouldn’t accept that, they want to settle the scores with both the Bucks and #DemBoyz. And the only way to do that is to wage war! Final Battle will have a LADDER WAR for the titles!
Kenny King VS Christopher Daniels!
The K I N G takes a break from being the #BulletClubSilencer to prove himself against the Almighty former ROH World Champion. However, on commentary, Marty Scurll watches and scouts his Final Battle opponent. The Villain knows Daniels wants to make SCU the top trio in the business, but he prefers “S C U R double L.” Will the Fallen Angel gain some last minute momentum going into his match with Marty?
Before the match, Kenny King speaks to Daniels. “You are, homey, a timeless talent.” Kenny uses “timeless” because there’s no one here who knows how old Daniels really is. But it turns out Daniels doesn’t have a lot of time left in ROH. So Kenny figures it’d look real good on his resume if he was one of Daniels’ last losses in ROH “as we boot you out the door.” But Kenny will be nice enough to “haul you back to SCU”, as in the Senior Citizens Unit at the hospital! Daniels gets riled up with that one, and he starts swinging with the bell!
Daniels jabs and jabs on Kenny, then whips. He knocks Kenny down with a calf kick, but he stays on him with chops. Daniels bumps Kenny off buckles then chops him more. Kenny knees back and throws forearms. Daniels ducks the heel kick and hits the quebrada! Cover, TWO! Kenny apologizes for the “joke” but Daniels doesn’t accept it. Daniels bumps him off more buckles, then gets the “SCU!” going. He whips and elbows Kenny out of the ring. Daniels builds speed and hits a baseball slide. Fans fire up and high-five Daniels. Daniels clears some fans out to whip Kenny at barriers! Kenny writhes as fans chant for the Fallen Angel. Kenny hits back but Daniels bumps Kenny off the apron. Daniels climbs up and ducks another kick, and even the Eddy Gordo kick. But then Kenny sweeps the legs! Daniels crashes and burns, and we go to break.
ROH returns as Daniels fights out of Kenny’s chinlock. Daniels swings but Kenny spins him around with a full nelson into a backbreaker, then runs Daniels over with a clothesline. Kenny grins as he reminds us all he’s the K I N G Kiiing~! Then he mocks old man Daniels before stomping him. Scurll admits this change in Kenny is working for him. Daniels gets up but Kenny runs him over with a shoulder. Kenny then does his dance before covering, TWO! Kenny keeps on Daniels with a chinlock, but fans rally up. Daniels feeds off the power and gets up to fight out again. Daniels throws forearms and chops. He runs but into Kenny’s chin checker and Eddy Gordo kick. Kenny hotshots Daniels then goes back to the apron. He springboards but Daniesl gets under. Kenny comes back but Daniels catches him into a Blue Thunder Bomb!
Both men are down but fans rally up again. Daniels gets to a corner and drags himself up. Kenny gets to another corner but Daniels runs out to rally. Daniels whips but Kenny reverses, only for Daniels to slide under and hit the STO! Fans fire up with Daniels as Kenny gets to a corner. Daniels tells Scurll he’s watching him, then he hits Kenny with a corner clothesline. Daniels brings Kenny up for a wheelbarrow facebuster! Cover, TWO! Daniels points to a corner and brings Kenny up. Kenny fights back, and gets Daniels into a spinebuster! Cover and Kenny grabs the ropes, TWO! Scurll reprimands Kenny’s cheating. Kenny brings Daniels up in the fireman’s carry but Daniels fights out and runs. Kenny elbows him but runs into Daniels’ uppercut. Daniels runs and counters Kenny’s counter into an urenage!
Daniels wants to go to the corner but Kenny grabs his feet and kicks him down! The ref gets knocked over, too, and Kenny kicks Daniels in the balls! Kenny blows a kiss good-bye, to hit the Royal Flush! Cover, Kenny wins!
Winner: Kenny King, by pinfall
The #BulletClubSilencer turns into a #FallenAngelSlayer as we head for the New Year. Will the K I N G use this to get back towards a title? Can Daniels turn things around and be ready for The Villain at Final Battle? For that matter, can Daniels do anything about his contract countdown?
Dalton Castle speaks.
“Three months. Three months is how long I was out with an injury, with one thing in mind: to regain the ROH World Championship.” The Peacock didn’t lose his focus, but he is being distracted. Castle didn’t have doctors stick needles in his spine just so he could face Matt Taven. That belt Matt wears is just a ruse! A fake! However, the rage ignited within Castle is real. Will that rage burn The Kingdom down?
Jeff Cobb VS Josh Woods!
The Hawaiian Hulk and current ROH World Television Champion also considers himself Mr. Top Prospect 2018 after he destroyed the field without ever competing. However, The Goods became Mr. Top Prospect 2017 the old fashion way: by winning the tournament. Who will prove themselves the true Top Prospect of ROH tonight?
The Code of Honor is upheld and the two approach. Cobb gets a leg and then the waistlock, but Woods drops down to reverse. Cobb gets a ropebreak and Woods honors it. They go again, but as Cobb gets the facelock, Hangman Page appears! Hangman has a chair to take a seat, and a mic for later. Cobb rolls Woods in a waistlock but Woods breaks out to roll Cobb. Woods has a leg but Cobb gets up and to the ropes. They break clean and even Hangman applauds. Woods lunges and gets Cobb down, and goes for the armbar! Cobb moves around and gets the ropebreak again, so Woods lets him go. Woods keeps after the arm and traps it to get Cobb down again. Woods still wants an armbar but Cobb powers off. They go around but Woods keeps control as he goes after the elbow and wrist.
Fans rally up and Cobb powers up. Woods spins Cobb but Cobb blocks the belly2belly. Cobb suplexes Woods back but Woods slips out. Woods goes for a sleeper but Cobb blocks and arm-drags Woods off. Woods comes back but is caught into a trap-leg exploder! Cobb runs but misses in the corner, Woods throws him down! Woods goes for the armbar again, but Cobb clasps hands! Cobb puts Woods in a cover, TWO! Woods goes to use his legs but Cobb moves around. Fans rally and Cobb deadlifts Woods! Cobb catapults Woods at buckles, and Hangman seems mildly impressed. Fans rally as both Woods and Cobb stand up. Cobb runs at Woods but Woods boots him back. Woods runs for a big knee strike! Woods keeps moving, and springboards but into Tour of the Islands!! Cover, Cobb wins!
Winner: Jeff Cobb, by pinfall
Mr. 2018 beats Mr. 2017 and rolls on towards Final Battle. Hangman gets up with his mic and heads to the ring. He stands face to face with Cobb and says “Pretty impressive, huh, guys? Jeff Cobb, TV Champion!” But Cobb should get out of the ring so Hangman can show him “how a real ass whooping is done.” Bring out Hangman’s opponent!
Hangman Adam Page VS Facade w/ Danni!
The Problem Solver won’t let the ROH World TV Champion get ahead of him, and looks to use the Neon Ninja as a tune-up. Will Hangman be able to focus on the opponent in front of him? Or will he be too busy thinking about the opponent ahead of him at Final Battle?
ROH returns as Hangman stomps a mudhole into Facade. He backs off at 4 but then clotheslines Facade out of the ring. By the way, Cobb has taken Hangman’s seat on stage so he can watch up close just as Hangman did. And Hangman makes sure Cobb saw what he just did, too. Hangman then gets on the apron and htis the shooting star shoulder! Fans fire up as Hangman puts Facade back in. Hangman enjoys the cheers a moment before going back in the ring. Hangman pumphandle deadlifts Facade to show off his strength, and then Fall Away slams to a bridge! TWO, and Danni is relieved for her Neon Ninja. She and fans rally up for Facade and Facade chops Hangman. Hangman haymakers back, so Facade chops back. Hangman rocks Facade with a right, then whips.
Facade reverses but Hangman holds ropes. Facade runs in but is put on the apron. He shoulders into Hangman then slingshots up and over. Facade runs and waistlocks but Hangman bucks him off. Facade comes back and baits Hangman. Hangman runs but Facade goes up and moonsaults over! Facade goes Matrix and then cartwheel kicks Hangman to a corner! Fans fire up as Facade runs in corner to corner. Hangman dodges but runs into boots. Facade climbs up and prepares himself. He walks the ropes but gets booted out of the sky! Scurll laughs it up on commentary while Hangman stalks Facade to a corner. Facade gets on the apron but Hangman drags him up. They fight as Hangman drags Facade to the top rope.
Hangman holds Facade, and throws him with a SUPER Fall Away Slam! Facade ends up in the opposite corner and Danni is concerned. Hangman trash talks Cobb but Cobb tells Hangman to focus. Hangman toys with Facade but Facade chops back! It does nothing, and Hangman rocks Facade with a right. Facade chops and chops and forearms, but Hangman still shrugs it all off. Facade keeps throwing strikes but gets rocked with a roaring elbow! Hangman kicks Facade around, then runs, but Facade follows for a springboard enziguri! Hangman ends up outside and Facade builds speed to double jump springboard somersault ax handle! The fans are thunderous and Danni is running laps as Facade puts Hangman in the ring. Facade springboards but has to roll through. He turns around into the Buckshot! Then the Rite of Passage! Cover, Hangman wins!
Winner: Hangman Adam Page, by pinfall
Hangman turns the Neon Ninja’s lights out while he keeps pace with Cobb. Cobb returns to the ring to stand face to face with Hangman again. The two are raring for this fight, who will win when it all goes down?
ROH revisits Survival of the Fittest 2018.
The finals came down to Marty Scurll and Christopher Daniels, and Scurll won! The Villain has a future ROH World Championship match in his back pocket, but Daniels says Scurll only won because of the gauntlet format. Hangman Page did all the work and Scurll capitalized on a tired Daniels. Scurll wouldn’t let Daniels make such excuses, which brings us to their 1v1 Final Battle match. Daniels wants Scurll to put his Survival of the Fittest shot on the line, so Scurll put it on the line. Scurll thinks Daniels’ desperation is sad, but he’s confident he’ll win and keep his shot. This first-time ever match has huge stakes on it, especially for Daniels. Can the Fallen Angel turn his luck around all in one night?
Jay Lethal speaks on his coming match with Cody.
The Franchise’s first match with The American Nightmare, Cody was here to “prove that he could hang.” Cody failed because he had to cheat. Lethal wondered when that exact moment was that Cody realized he couldn’t hang with the best in the world. But then fast forward to a rematch in the Bull Rope Match and Lethal evened the score. Lethal won’t take away from Cody’s resume, from his wins to his lineage. Deep down, Lethal likes Cody. They may not always agree or get along, Cody is still great, but Lethal also knows how Cody is. This year’s Final Battle, Cody can use all the tricks in the book, but Lethal vows to leave still ROH World Champion. Lethal vows that he will not lose to Cody, but can he keep his word?
Matt Taven speaks.
“Remember? Do you remember? Or does that memory hurt so bad that you have to bury it deep down inside?” Because Taven remembers Castle crumbling under the pressure of being top champion. But not Taven. Taven is a diamond formed by such pressure. Taven’s worked harder than anyone else to get his spotlight. Castle was a one hit wonder, but Taven is building a legacy. The Peacock will be chapter one. At Final Battle, everyone will remember Taven is the real ROH WHC, because he is Matt Taven.
The pulse quickens.
Something is coming to ROH. Something that will get hearts pounding. But what is it? When and where will it appear?
ROH World Tag Team Championships: SoCal Uncensored VS Guerrero Maya Jr. & Stuka Jr!
The Briscoes did everything they could to keep their title, such as injuring Christopher Daniels’ neck so that he couldn’t compete alongside Frankie Kazarian. However, Scorpio Sky stepped up, and he helped Kaz dethrone Jay & Mark in the star-studded Triple Threat Tag Match. The Heavy Metal Rebel and Closer have their contracts, but are they risking too much putting their titles on the line against two CMLL stars?
The introductions are made, the belts are raised, and the Code of Honor is upheld. The teams sort out and Scorpio starts against Maya. They circle and tie up, and Scorpio gets the wristlock. Maya reverses to a hammerlock, but Scorpio uses a drop toehold to trip him up. Scorpio gets the facelock, but Maya reverses to a Fujiwara armbar. Maya brings Scorpio up for an arm wrench but Scorpio reverses back. Scorpio puts on a headlock but Maya brings him down to a cradle cover. TWO as Scorpio lets Maya go. The two stand up but stand off as Scorpio nears a corner. Fans applaud as Scorpio and Maya circle again.
Scorpio and Maya tie up and Scorpio gets a headlock. Maya counters with a wristlock but Scorpio uses the ropes to flip through. Scorpio gets the headlock again, but Maya fights back. Maya powers out of the hold and things speed up, Scorpio runs into a tilt-o-whirl backbreaker! Maya tags out to Stuka, and Stuka stomps Scorpio. Stuka whips and gives Scorpio a tilt-o-whirl backbreaker of his own! Stuka stomps more, then drags Scorpio up for punches right to the head. Scorpio fights back and then runs, with Kaz tagging in. Scorpio dodges Stuka’s swing to whip. Things speed up, Kaz comes in with a windmill kick! Cover, TWO! Kaz brings Stuka up for a scoop but Stuka slips out. Stuka waistlocks but Kaz bucks him off to dropkick him down! Cover, TWO!
Stuka barely gets out but he doesn’t get away as Kaz tags Scorpio. SCU grab a leg each and use that to throw Stuka! Scorpio covers, TWO, and we go to one last break.
ROH returns once more, and Stuka catches Scorpio into an atomic lift. Maya runs in and Team CMLL combines for a flapjack bulldog! Stuka runs and Maya gives him a tilt-o-whirl for a splash on Scorpio! Cover as Maya intercepts Kaz with a kick, TWO! Maya and Stuka coordinate to grab a leg each, and they give Scorpio a 2v1 Mexican Surfboard! But Kaz tags from the neutral corner, which apparently is legal? Kaz runs and double covers on Team CMLL! TWO as they let Scorpio go! The fans love it, though, and the match continues. Kaz swings on Stuka but ends up in a full nelson. Kaz fights off Maya a moment, but can’t break free of Stuka. Maya comes back and gets Kaz’s leg, and Team CMLL twists Kaz in both directions!
Kaz endures and Scorpio saves him. Team CMLL double whip Kaz but Kaz sends them into each other. Hot tag to Scorpio, and the Closer rallies! Scorpio baits Maya into the corner and then slingshot headscissors him down! He gets Stuka but Stuka reverses the whip, only to get dumdum stomps! Scorpio hits Maya with a corner kick, then sweeps the legs. Kaz runs in for the swinging dropkick! Maya bails out but Stuka comes back to rally on SCU. Stuka whips but Kaz reverses. Kaz runs in but Stuka dodges to send him into the post! Stuka grabs Scorpio for a spinebuster, then hurries up top! SUPER ASAI onto Kaz! Maya goes after Scorpio and returns the headscissors. Scorpio bails out while Maya fires up. Maya DIVES to somersault tope onto Scorpio! They crash and burn into barriers but Stuka helps Maya up and in.
Team CMLL are fired up as Kaz returns. Kaz shoulders in and slingshots to DDT Maya. Stuka elbows Kaz and then kicks Scorpio. Stuka whips but Scorpio reverses and Kaz boots Stuka. SCU combine for a urenage backstabber, Burning Heart! Cover, SCU wins!
Winner: SoCal Uncensored, Scorpio Sky pinning; still ROH World Tag Team Champions
Hearts on fire, strong desire, Kaz and Scorpio win! Daniels returns to the ring to celebrate, but also to speak. “First of all, let me say, SCU. Second of all, two weeks ago, these two gentlemen walked into the ring and walked out the world tag team champions.” The first thing SCU did was negotiate their new contracts! But only for Kaz and Scorpio. That means the Fallen Angel is behind the 8 ball. He has one match remaining on his ROH contract at Final Battle, against The Villain, Marty Scurll. As we saw, Daniels challenged Scurll to put his shot on the line, and now Daniels is in position to get a “new lease on life in ROH.” If he has to go through Scurll to stay in the company he helped built and put on the map, then he will!
Scurll moves from commentary to respond to SCU directly. Fans duel as Scurll tells Daniels he’s right. Daniels did help build ROH. But does Daniels want to be known as a legend? The first-ever ROH main eventer and Grand Slam Champion. Or does he want to be remembered for a “stupid three letter catchphrase”? It would be Scurll’s pleasure to give Daniels the match of his career. But a warning: “this will be your final battle.” Daniels is a man with his back against the wall, will he stay standing in his company?
A pretty great episode, but perhaps with some issues in organizing a very important story. Firstly, the build between Jeff Cobb and Hangman Page is pretty good because it focuses on matches and action to do it. Cobb looks great against Woods and Hangman looks great against Facade, but both Woods and Facade still looked strong in return. The matches were in no way squashes, so that the midcard isn’t hurt for the sake of the champion and challenger. Cobb VS Hangman is going to be really good, really physical, and I’m sure Hangman will have a shocking moment of strength somewhere in there, but it’ll still be Cobb winning to retain. The promos this week to hype the real and “real” ROH World Championship matches were pretty good, and I’m looking forward to next week’s Six Man of The Kingdom VS Cody, Castle & Lethal.
Now, the issue I speak of is this story for Christopher Daniels. His match with Kenny King to open was great, and it works that Scurll was on commentary to talk it all up. However, I don’t know why they waited to air the Survival of the Fittest backstage scene until after another story took place, then still had Daniels come out at the end to officially inform fans. Daniels VS King should’ve been next week for the actual go-home show and have a stare down of Daniels and Scurll close the night, instead of piggybacking on tonight’s main event. SoCal Uncensored VS Team CMLL was a great tag match, perhaps with some miscues like Kaz’s weird neutral corner tag, but still great. Daniels and Scurll kinda took their spotlight, tonight should’ve ended with The Bucks or Briscoes coming out for a stare down on the way to Ladder War.
My Score: 8.5/10
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