Raw has so much to address on the Road to Wrestlemania! Will Ronda Rousey still be champion? What will Triple H have to say about Batista’s attack on Flair?
- Six Man Tag: Finn Balor, Braun Strowman & Kurt Angle VS Baron Corbin, Drew McIntyre & Bobby Lashley w/ Lio Rush; Corbin, McIntyre & Lashley win.
- Natalya VS Ruby Riott w/ The Riott Squad; Natalya wins.
- Raw Tag Team Gauntlet: Heavy Machinery wins.
- Dean Ambrose VS Elias; Elias wins.
- Tamina w/ Nia Jax VS Sasha Banks w/ Bayley; Tamina wins.
- Raw Tag Team Championships: The Revival VS Aleister Black & Ricochet; The Revival win, by disqualification, and retain the Raw Tag Team Championships.
PLAY BY PLAY
Roman Reigns is here!
The Big Dog returns again after the amazing news that his leukemia is in remission! Philadelphia welcomes Roman with a standing ovation as he makes his way out on stage and down the ramp. Roman soaks up all the cheers as he enters the ring. “Last week in Atlanta, that was the comeback.” But tonight in Philly, it’s time to take The Yard back. Roman thought about his future, what he wants, and there’s only one man standing in his way. That man is his brother, Seth Rollins. In order for Roman to get what he wants, he has to address Rollins, so he asks Rollins come to the ring. Seth Rollins does appear and Philly’s ready to #BurnItDown! The Architect hopes to be the Beast Slayer judging from the brand new shirt he’s got on. But Rollins does join Roman in the ring to talk.
“Alright, before we get to all that,” Rollins says, he wants to tell Roman something. Roman winning the fight of his life, literally, that was a great moment in Rollins’ life. Rollins feels inspired. He’ll take all that to Wrestlemania and truly slay the Beast! And more importantly, Rollins vows to bring the WWE Universal Championship back to Raw every single week! With that said, Rollins has an idea where Roman’s head is at. Rollins understands what it’s like to vacate a title. If anyone else deserves a shot as much as Rollins, it’s Roman. Fans are a little conflicted on that, but Rollins agrees to talk it out. Roman thought Rollins knew everything. Because he’s wrong on this one.
The one man who watched over Raw while Roman was gone was Rollins. Rollins was the one to keep everything in line. No one has more confidence in Rollins than Roman, because Roman knows Rollins has what it takes. Roman simply wishes Rollins luck. But he does need a favor. Anything for Roman. Anything? Yes, anything. Well then, let’s get the band back together. Fans know what that means! Rollins knows he said “anything”, but not that. Rollins can’t forgive Ambrose for what he did and when he did it. Roman sees he has his work cut out for him. Fans chant “Shield! Shield!” Seems they want it as much as Roman.
Roman has a different perspective after what he went through. Tomorrow is never guaranteed, life is short. The most important thing is the relationships they have, and the Shield are brothers. Roman can’t tell what Ambrose is up to, but he wants one more main event with his brothers before they’re gone. What does Rollins say? Rollins thinks as the fans chant for the Shield. “Y’know what, I put that part of my life behind me. But you’re right.” Rollins admits life is too short, so if Roman wants the Shield one last time, then for Roman, he’s in! But what about the third? Roman calls for Dean Ambrose! And though Rollins doubts it’ll happen, Ambrose does appear! The Lunatic Fringe paces on stage as fans cheer. And Elias attacks!! The Drifter SMACKS Ambrose with his guitar then runs away!
Roman and Rollins hurry to Ambrose’s side, but they weren’t fast enough. Ambrose gets up, shoves Rollins away and storms off. Will Ambrose still accept their invitation after this?
Backstage interview with Baron Corbin, Drew McIntyre, Bobby Lashley & Lio Rush.
Their response to The Shield’s near reunion doesn’t seem to bother this pack. McIntyre says he broke The Shield, because they were three men living in the past. It was pathetic. Corbin says the real news is that their trio will dominate Finn Balor, Braun Strowman & Kurt Angle. Lashley says Finn will learn he’s just borrowing Lashley’s Intercontinental Championship. Corbin says Angle will realize he can’t hang with the athletes of today. The pack heads out, because that match is next!
Six Man Tag: Finn Balor, Braun Strowman & Kurt Angle VS Baron Corbin, Drew McIntyre & Bobby Lashley w/ Lio Rush!
The Extraordinary Man teams with the Monster Among Men and Olympic Gold Medalist to battle their common enemies. Will the Lone Wolf, Scottish Terminator and Rocky Mountain Machine #GetTheseHands? Or will they establish themselves as the new alphas of Raw?
Raw returns as Strowman makes his entrance. The teams sort out and Strowman starts against Corbin. Corbin backs off to his corner then throws his vest at Strowman! Corbin throws hands then runs, but Strowman grabs him with one hand! Strowman shoves Corbin right out! Corbin comes back but runs into a clothesline! Strowman then clotheslines Corbin all the way out, and hurries to BLAST Corbin into barriers! The Monster glares at Lashley as he puts Corbin back in the ring. Corbin scrambles and tags McIntyre. McIntyre stares Strowman down but is put in a corner! Strowman whips corner to corner but misses. He still rocks McIntyre with an uppercut! Strowman clubs McIntyre then tags in Finn. Finn climbs and drops ax handles.
Finn wrenches but McIntyre knees low. McIntyre drags Finn over and tags in Lashley. Lashley throws clubbing forearms then drags Finn up for a powerbomb. Finn fights out and then dumps Lashley out. Finn dodges Corbin to clothesline him out, then runs to FLY! Direct hit gets both Lashley and Corbin! McIntyre comes in but he’s sent out, too! Finn builds speed again, but Lio swipes his feet! Lashley clobbers Finn from behind! The pack is in control as we go to break.
Raw returns as Corbin whips Finn corner to corner. Finn boots back but runs into DEEP SIX! Cover, TWO! Corbin is furious but Finn does survive. Corbin drags Finn up for elbows to the chest and shoulder. Then Corbin puts Finn in a half nelson and chinbar. Fans rally up as Finn endures. Finn reaches for his corner but Corbin throws him out. Finn shoulders back in then fights Lashley off. He slingshots but into Corbin’s haymaker! Corbin tags McIntyre to stomp Finn out. McIntyre drags Finn up for a CHOP! McIntyre eggs Finn on to reach for his corner, but then drags him up for a suplex. Finn blocks and fights back, but McIntyre kicks a leg out. McIntyre deadlift suplexes Finn up and over! Cover, TWO, but McIntyre is on Finn with another chinbar.
Fans rally up again and Finn fights up. Finn reaches but has to fight McIntyre off. McIntyre whips Finn to the corner but Finn fights back! Finn runs but into a scoop, only to slip out. He dodges McIntyre int he corner, hot tag to Angle! Angle rallies with German Suplexes! Angle wants the hat trick but McIntyre denies it. McIntyre misses in the corner, and Angle gets that hat trick! Angle stalks McIntyre, Olympic Slam escaped. McIntyre prepares a bomb but Angle back drops! McIntyre sunset flips but McIntyre rolls through, ANKLE LOCK! Angle keeps McIntyre away but Lashley runs in. Lashley gets a German! Angle gets a Glasgow Kiss! McIntyre and Angle are both dazed while we go to break.
Raw returns again, and Corbin has Angle in a half nelson chinbar. Fans rally and Angle endures. Angle fights his way up and gets Corbin with a takedown. Angle wants the leg but Corbin shoves him away. Corbin misses in the corner then is sent outside. Hot tag to Strowman! The Monster rallies on them all! Strowman puts Corbin in a corner, and hits a big clothesline! Then he clubs Corbin with one arm! Fans fire up with Strowman as he scoops Corbin. Tag to Finn, MONSTER SLAM! COUP DE GRACE! But Lio puts Finn’s foot on the ropes! The ref stops counting but Finn chases after Lio! Lio dodges, Lashley TACKLES Finn into a post! But Strowman runs in! Lashley gets clear, Lio gets rammed into the timekeeper’s area! Fans lose their minds as McIntyre hurries to put Finn back in.
Corbin tags Lashley and Lashley SPEARS Finn! Cover, Lashley’s team wins!
Winner: Bobby Lashley, Drew McIntyre & Baron Corbin, Lashley pinning
The Rocky Mountain Machine pins the WWE Intercontinental Champion, will this earn him a rematch? Will Corbin and his pack continue to stand tall?
Corbin does continue the beating on Finn, and McIntyre throws Angle into barriers. Corbin joins in, as does Lashley. McIntyre holds Angle up for Corbin, armed with steel steps. Lashley and McIntyre whip Angle into the steps! Then they go to move the base into the ring. Fans boo as McIntyre CLAYMORES Finn! Lashley hauls Finn over and Corbin helps stand him up. They double CHOKE SLAM Finn on the steps! Fans boo as Corbin, McIntyre and Lashley stand tall. Will anyone be able to stop them?
Backstage interview with Heavy Machinery.
Tucker Knight & Otis Dozovic have been in good moods, but not everyone seems to like them being around. The Raw Tag Team Division all talked bad about the new teams. But at the same time, these new teams are fresh meat. But the Ascension don’t like Heavy Machinery. He looks like Chris Farley in a bad SNL skit. But to Konnor & Viktor, Heavy Machinery are just a pair of dumb bells. Otis is sensitive, but if that’s how The Ascension feels, Heavy Machinery will steamroll everyone! They hurt those who hurt them first, will the entire Raw Tag Team Division be put in the Compactor?
Natalya VS Ruby Riott w/ The Riott Squad!
The Queen of Harts and the Squad Leader aren’t done with each other. After last week’s tag team match was rudely interrupted by Becky Lynch, this week offers another chance for Natty and Ruby to settle things. Will the grudge be settled once and for all? Or will it only grow stronger?
Raw returns as the bell rings. Ruby rams her knee in on Natty then throws her down for fast hands. She kicks Natty in the back then asks Natty, “Where’s Ronda, huh!?” Ruby kicks Natty again then bumps Natty off buckles. She stomps a mudhole in but backs off at 4. Ruby snapmares Natty into a headlock. She grinds Natty down but fans rally up. Natty feeds off the energy to fight out and arm-drag Ruby down. Ruby ducks the discus but Natty counters to a snap suplex! And then hits the discus after all! Natty grabs the legs and puts on the Sharpshooter! The Squad reach for Ruby, but Natty drags Ruby away! Ruby turns and slaps her way out! Ruby cradles Natty, TWO, Natty has the cradle! Natty wins!
Winner: Natalya, by pinfall
The Queen of Harts gets the better of the Squad Leader, then gets clear of the rest of the Squad. But heading out now is Lacey Evans. The “Sassy Southern Belle” simply struts her stuff again then heads back with a smile. Is Lacey just here for the spotlight? Or will she finally flex that Woman’s Right in the ring?
Stephanie McMahon’s guests arrive.
Saturday Night Live’s Michael Che and Colin Jost are here to prepare for their roles as special correspondents for Wrestlemania! Michael and Colin are also pumped for Raw in Philadelphia. Fans pop for that. But Colin also looks forward to being in New York for Mania! Fans boo. Stephanie tries to explain to Michael and Colin that the WWE superstars are just a bit more forceful than their costars. Well Colin wrestled in high school, he should be fine. Michael knows better. Stephanie will make sure they have security.
Triple H heads to the ring!
The Game is here to respond to what The Animal, Batista, did to the Nature Boy last week. Raw wanted to celebrate Ric Flair’s 70th birthday, but Batista wanted HHH’s attention. Batista attacked Ric Flair and dragged him out of his dressing room, but ran off before HHH could get to him. Batista would rub it in on an Instagram video post! He apologizes for not being at Raw tonight, because he just doesn’t like Philly. So what Batista will do is also think about how he doesn’t like Pittsburgh, but maybe he’ll see HHH there. They’re playing this game by Batista’s rules. #GameOver.
Raw returns as HHH speaks. As if HHH wasn’t mad enough. HHH came out last week, wanting to celebrate one of the biggest legends in pro-wrestling ever. He wanted the world to see the 16-time world champion and have everyone sing his praises. But HHH wasn’t just there for Ric Flair, he was there for Richard Fliehr, the real man behind the Nature Boy. Not many people know Richard Fliehr, but that is the guy HHH spent years with and became best friends with. Fliehr was there for HHH’s best and worst times, and HHH was there for Fliehr’s best and worst. They were Best Man for each other, though that proved hard for HHH to be at Ric’s weddings. HHH was there when Ric buried his son.
HHH grows emotional as he says Richard Fliehr was clinging to life a year ago. And during that time, every phone call would fill HHH with dread. Fans “WOO~” in support of HHH and Ric. HHH says that he was here for Fliehr, a man who wasn’t really supposed to be alive, to give him what he loved most of all: standing in this ring for the fans. HHH was there to walk Fliehr to this ring for one more round as Nature Boy, because it is what Ric lived for. But it didn’t happen, because of “that piece of…” Fans know HHH wants to say it, but HHH composes himself. Batista wanted HHH’s attention. Batista’s cried about it all over the internet, and when he didn’t get what he wanted, he couldn’t quit. Which is odd, because Batista quit when he had the fans behind him!
But the one time he couldn’t quit, he attacked a man lucky to be alive! And now he wants to talk on titantron and do Bad Guy 101. Real original trash talk. But HHH doesn’t care where Batista wants to go or what Batista wants to do. HHH can come to Batista’s house! Or invite Batista to his house! It doesn’t matter where or when, any building, HHH will wait for Batista to “have some balls” and show up!
HHH wants Batista to know one thing: for every moment in Evolution, for what Batista did to Ric, this won’t be The Game, this won’t be a product, but that won’t be who is standing in front of Batista. It’s not the character, it’s the man. Look him in the eyes if you can, Batista, and HHH will give him everything! Batista wanted HHH’s attention? He’s got it!! Will Batista regret playing games?
Backstage interview with Stephanie McMahon.
What is her reaction to Ronda Rousey’s literal dropping of the belt, and Charlotte Flair’s expectation of being crowned the new champion? Stephanie knows Charlotte’s getting ahead of herself. But Ronda was disrespectful to the title. That is why WWE will do what’s best for WWE: they are dropping all charges against Becky Lynch. That includes the 60-day suspension. But Becky’s not 100% physically, so Stephanie invited Becky to sign a Hold Harmless Agreement. WWE is not responsible if something happens to Becky at Fastlane, when The Man goes 1v1 with The Queen again for the vacant Raw Women’s Champion. The Baddest Woman on the Planet will have to just accept this! Who will be the NEW champion this close to Wrestlemania?
Roman Reigns finds Dean Ambrose.
Aren’t they past hanging out in dark places backstage like this, right? They have a locker room, and there’s a chair for Ambrose at any time he wants. Ambrose knows Roman wants to talk, but he needs to stay sharp for his match later. Ambrose heads off again, but will he ever come back around to being a brother to The Shield?
Raw Tag Team Gauntlet!
Heavy Machinery wanted to get back at the bullies for making fun of Otis, and now they’ll be the first team in this gauntlet match! Will it be an All You Can Beat buffet for Tucker and Otis?
Raw returns, and Heavy Machinery’s opponents are…
Heavy Machinery VS The B-Team!
Will Curt Axel & Bo Dallas have to change the “B” in B-Team from “Best” to “Bulldozed”?
The other teams in the gauntlet, The Ascension and the Major Brothers, are already ringside to be ready for their turns. The bell rings and Dozer starts with Axel. Axel wants to lighten the mood with a Floss! Dozer bulldozes him! Dozer puts Axel in a corner and clubs away. Tag to Tucker and Otis whips him in for a big splash. Tucker feeds Axel to a tackle, then covers, TWO! Axel crawls away but Tucker runs in. Tucker misses and Axel stomps a mudhole stomp. Bo chants “B-Team! B-Team! Go go go!” Tag to Bo and they double whip Tucker. Tucker kicks them away then throws Bo into Axel. Tucker clotheslines and makes Axel DDT Bo! Tag to Dozer, and he drags Bo up. Dozer runs, Tucker holds Bo, but Bo fights out! Bo runs into a scoop, and COMPACTOR! Cover, Heavy Machinery ELIMINATES The B-Team!
Heavy Machinery VS The Ascension!
But no time to waste, Konnor attacks Dozer already! Konnor trash talks Dozer then runs, but Dozer runs him over! Tag to Tucker, and they double body shot. Heavy Machinery march, then squash Konnor with a belly sandwich! Tucker covers, ONE! Tucker’s on Konnor but Konnor powers him to the corner. The Ascension mug Tucker in the corner then Viktor tags in. Viktor throws a big knee strike that rocks Tucker! Cover, TWO, but Viktor’s still on Tucker with European Uppercuts and CHOPS! Tag to Konnor, and The Ascension double punch, club and kick Tucker down. Konnor covers, TWO! Konnor keeps on Tucker with a facelock, then drags him up to a corner. He CHOPS Tucker, then clubs away on Tucker’s back. He whips corner to corner hard and Tucker falls to the mat. Cover, ONE!
Fans rally for Tucker, as does Dozer, but Konnor tells them to shut up. Konnor runs in but misses Tucker! Konnor hits post and Tucker crawls. Hot tags to Viktor and Dozer! Dozer rallies with big belly tackles! He scoops and throws Viktor overhead! Dozer runs in corner to corner for a splash, then climbs up! Dozer hits a Vader Bomb! Cover, Heavy Machinery ELIMINATES The Ascension!
Heavy Machinery VS The Major Brothers!
And just like The Ascension before them, Curt Hawkins & Zack Ryder attack right away! Hawkins rains down rights on Dozer then drags him up. Hawkins dragon sleepers and tags in Ryder. Inverted backbreaker to inverted DDT! Ryder slingshots for a splash! Cover, TWO! Ryder rains down rights on Dozer then tags Hawkins. Russian Leg Sweep and STO combo! Cover, but Tucker breaks it! Tucker throws hands on Ryder then clotheslines himself out with Ryder! Hawkins hurries after Dozer, but runs into a pop-up powerslam! Dozer pumps it up and fans cheer as he hits the Caterpillar! Cover, Heavy Machinery wins!
Winners: Heavy Machinery, Otis Dozovic pinning
Lesson learned: don’t get on Otis’ bad side! Heavy Machinery is COMIIIN~, will they demolish the entire WWE Tag Team Division?
Michael Che and Colin Jost walk the halls.
Colin wonders if Philly has any gluten free cheese steaks. Michael tells Colin that as the Wrestlemania correspondents, they need to be serious. Colin’s serious! He’s even been keeping up. The Bushwackers, Coco B. Ware, and he can’t wait to smell what The Rock is cooking. They need to get him a TV or something. But they already work in live television, what could possibly surprise them? They come across EC3 spritzing himself with… It smells like vodka? But EC3 aside, they also encounter Titus O’Neil! Titus loves SNL! Let’s get a pic for the kids! Just do it, Colin. Okay, cheese~! And speaking of, Titus is gonna have a cheese steak. Then No Way Jose and his conga line pass through. Michael wants to party, but Colin says they need to remain unbiased. Says the man wearing a Mets hat in Philly…
Torrie Wilson is a WWE Hall of Fame inductee!
The most downloaded and searched woman on WWE, and proud to be both beautiful and strong, Torrie was certainly one of the leading ladies of the WWE Diva’s Era. And now she can add a Hall of Fame ring to her collection!
Backstage interview with Charlotte Flair.
The Queen won’t be getting the Raw Women’s Championship by default, she has to face Becky Lynch at Fastlane. If Becky signs the Hold Harmless Agreement. But Charlotte knows Becky will sign because of her stubborn Irish pride. Becky’s also very arrogant, unlike Charlotte. But even at Becky’s best, The Man doesn’t compare to The Queen. Becky was crushed when she was suspended, but now Charlotte vows to put Becky on the shelf for good. Charlotte “apologizes” for ruining everyone’s hopes for Becky, but Becky is literally a one-legged person in an ass kicking contest. Charlotte vows to be THE Raw Women’s Champion, but will she?
Now Seth Rollins finds Dean Ambrose backstage.
Quite the set-up back here. Can they talk? They haven’t always gotten along, but that’s just what brothers do. Brothers fight, but are still brothers. Rollins admits to Ambrose that whether it’s against or together, they make each other better. They’re wrestling soulmates. So let’s get the Shield back together one last time? No can do. Ambrose appreciates the help last week, but he has business to take care of. And he’ll do it on his own. The Lunatic is proving to be a stubborn one. Will he ever come around?
Ladies and Gentlemen: Elias.
The Drifter is in Philadelphia, and sings a song. “You know how I know I’m in Philly? The Stanley Cup is nowhere to be found. You know how I know I’m in Philly? Because everyone takes such pride in this city. You know how I know I’m in Philly? Because everyone’s mom looks like that googly-eye slob, Gritty.” Fans don’t appreciate their moms or their mascot being made fun of. But Elias continues. “You know how I know I’m in Philly? Because everyone I see is a fat load. You know how I know I’m in Philly? Because I saw an Eagles fan eating horse manure on the side of the road.”
But do you REALLY wanna know how you know you’re in Philly? The kids have no futures, no matter how hard they try. And Bryce Harper said this is where his career would go to die! Ambrose makes his entrance and fans cheer!
Dean Ambrose VS Elias!
The Lunatic doesn’t want to wait, he tells the ref to ring the bell. The bell does ring, and Ambrose goes right at Elias with jabs and chops! Ambrose forearms and haymakers but Elias knees and chops back. Elias whips but Ambrose dodges to tackle Elias down! Ambrose throws fast hands then stomps Elias in a corner. The ref backs Ambrose off and Elias boots back. But Elias runs into a kick and Ambrose throws him down by his hair. Ambrose clotheslines Elias out but paces about the ring. Ambrose goes out and kicks Elias to bump him off aprons. He even Russian Leg Sweeps him into barriers. Ambrose refreshes the count to put Elias back in, only to clothesline Elias back out! The Lunatic paces again while we go to break.
Raw returns as Elias decides to go Old School. Fans boo and jeer but Elias hits the ax handle. Elias boots Ambrose down then stalks him to the ropes. He stomps Ambrose to the apron, then baseball slides him off! “Who Wants to Walk with Elias!?” Philly doesn’t. Elias slingshots but Ambrose dodges. Ambrose runs and DIVES onto Elias! Both men are down and a ring count begins. The count reaches 5 as Ambrose bumps Elias off barriers again. Ambrose puts Elias in then starts rallying with lariats! Ambrose runs in for a forearm smash in the corner, then whips Elias corner to corner. He hits another forearm but Elias rams Ambrose into buckles and clubs him from behind. Elias catches his breath while fans jeer. Elias stomps Ambrose out then drops a knee! Cover, ONE!
Elias keeps his cool as he drags Ambrose up. Elias throws haymakers then fisherman’s, but Ambrose cradles! TWO, and Ambrose gets a neckbreaker! Ambrose fires up and heads for a corner. Ambrose climbs but the bad back bothers him. He still forces himself up, then leaps, but into a leaping knee! Elias drags Ambrose up, Drift Away neckbreaker! Cover, Elias wins!
Winner: Elias, by pinfall
The smash hit from earlier tonight pays off, and Elias picks up the win! Will this lead Elias to a title opportunity on the Road to Wrestlemania? What does Ambrose have to do to get out of his slump? Well, Roman and Rollins appear on stage. Will the two of them together manage to break through to Ambrose?
Raw returns to Roman and Rollins heading to the ring.
The brothers join Ambrose while he’s still stinging from the defeat. Rollins and Roman talk to Ambrose but Ambrose keeps pacing. Ambrose wants to leave but Rollins and Roman won’t let him until they talk this out. He pushes his way through and gets out of the ring. Ambrose leaves through the crowd, and up the stairs. He may not want the reunion, but he does reference the old habits. But wait, Corbin returns, with McIntyre and Lashley in tow. “C’mon, guys. Please, just spare us another minute from this broken record.” Philly may be the City of Brotherly Love, but this is just sad.
McIntyre mocks the “fabled Hounds of Justice, now nothing more than three broken stray dogs fighting for the scraps.” He tells Roman that this probably isn’t the return he pictured. This is “bloody pathetic”! They were going to offer an epic match for Fastlane, but they don’t deserve it. So instead, this ends tonight! Corbin, Lashley and McIntyre mock The Shield more by flanking the ring very much the same way The Shield did. Roman and Rollins fight but it’s 3v2! McIntyre and Corbin have Roman while Lashley has Rollins. Ambrose gets mad, and rushes back down! The Shield IS back together! Ambrose fights every enemy, and Roman SUPERMAN PUNCHES Lashley! Corbin and McIntyre are ejected, and The Shield stands tall!
But it isn’t official without one thing. Roman and Rollins put their hands in. Ambrose paces while his brothers wait. He puts his hand in! The Shield fist bump is revived! Will the Hounds of Justice show they’ve still got some bite left in them?
Tamina w/ Nia Jax VS Sasha Banks w/ Bayley!
As a flip-side to last week’s match, the Daughter of Superfly goes against The Legit Boss to prepare for Fastlane’s WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship match! Will the Samoan Dynasty be able to get on the board before the titles are on the line? Or will the Boss & Hug Connection sweep them even before Sunday?
The bell rings and Tamina decks Sasha! Tamina rains down rights then stomps a mudhole in a corner. Sasha fights back and throws kicks. Sasha runs but into an elbow! Tamina covers, TWO! Tamina keeps her cool as she drags Sasha back up. She whips Sasha in then rams a big shoulder in! She throws Sasha across the way, then runs back in. Sasha slips out to knee Tamina back. Sasha runs for meteora in the corner, then another! Cover, TWO! Sasha keeps her cool as she drags Tamina up. Tamina headbutts back! Tamina runs but misses the diving headbutt! Sasha runs to hit the shining wizard! Cover, TWO! Bayley coaches Sasha up while Nia coaches Tamina. Sasha throws forearms on Tamina, but runs into a fireman’s carry! She fights out but Tamina rams her into a corner. Tamina throws Sasha then SUPERKICK, but it misses! Roll up, TWO!
Sasha keeps on Tamina but Tamina uppercuts her away! Tamina stalks Sasha to the corner, but misses! Russian Leg Sweep, into the Bank Statement crossface! Tamina endures, but Nia drags her all the way out! The fans boo and Bayley goes after her, but Nia tosses Bayley down! Sasha hits a Meteora from the apron! Tamina throws Sasha back in but Sasha spins to kick Tamina back! Sasha puts Tamina in now, but Nia anchors a foot! Sasha kicks Nia away, but gets a SUPERKICK from Tamina! Cover, Tamina wins!
Winner: Tamina, by pinfall
The Samoan Dynasty works together like a tag team does, and they even the score! Will Fastlane be a dead end for the #LegitHuggable reign? Or will the champs be able to survive the demolition derby and continue on towards Wrestlemania?
Michael and Colin react to the shocking events!
The Shield is back, the Samoan Dynasty looks great, and… Michael needs a pit stop. Does Colin need to go with him? To the bathroom. Well to watch his back. This isn’t a prison, Colin, it’s the WWE. Colin knows that. He’s not scared, either. But then he turns around into Braun Strowman! Colin thinks he’s a funny guy, huh? Strowman throws the Mets hat away. Colin is honored to meet Strowman. He saw that match. Tough loss, you’ll get them next time. D-Does Strowman work out? Colin does lat pull downs and jogging. Can he ask him something? Is any of this stuff even real? Strowman lifts Colin off the ground! What does he think!? Colin can’t answer but he’d probably apologize. Will Michael be the only one that makes it to Mania?
Raw returns, and Michael gets Strowman to spare Colin. Colin does apologize, and Michael apologizes for him. Strowman says he’ll see them at Mania. Wait, Strowman’s going to Mania? Will Colin reconsider taking this assignment?
Raw Tag Team Championships: The Revival VS Aleister Black & Ricochet!
The #TopGuys have been having a hard time against the newest crop of NXT superstars. They lost to DIY, Tommaso Ciampa & Johnny Gargano, and then they lost to the Dutch Destroyer and King of Flight! However, Ciampa’s leg was hurt during a match with The Bar on SmackDown and is not cleared to compete right now. Therefore, Aleister and Ricochet move up to already challenge for the tag team titles. Will Dash Wilder & Scott Dawson #SayYeah to a successful defense? Or will their reign #FadetoBlack?
Before the match, Aleister and Ricochet have an interview backstage. These two go from debuting to challenging, what do they have to say to their critics? “People fear what they can’t comprehend.” But let’s not worry about words but about actions. Ricochet and Aleister will show they are worthy through actions. They’re humbled, honored, and ready for this challenge. But tonight, “yo boys are about to fly even higher.” The music hits and the challengers make their entrances! Introductions are made, the belts are raised, and we begin this clash of NXT past and present to determine Raw’s future!
Teams sort out and Dash goes right at Aleister! Aleister throws haymakers and big kicks. Dawson runs in but he gets a kick. Dash blocks a boot and gives it to Dawson, to then hit a back suplex! Dash stomps Aleister then tags Dawson. They throw EuroUppers and kicks, then Dawson CHOPS and EuroUppers Aleister more. Dawson snapmares and drops elbows, and even a headbutt. Cover, TWO! Dawson stomps Aleister more and drags him up. He whips but Aleister dodges to quebrada! The GLORIOUS Duo, Bobby Roode & Chad Gable appear! They approach the ring as Aleister and Dawson crawl for their corners. Dawson anchors Aleister’s foot and tags in Dash. Dash drops an elbow to stop Aleister, and we continue after the break.
Raw returns and Dawson has Aleister in a keylock. Aleister fights his way up but Dawson keeps him from his corner. Gable & Roode watch closely as Dawson headlocks. Aleister arm-drags but Dawson shoves. Aleister comes back with a knee! Dawson haymakers but Aleister knees again! Both men are down and fans rally up. Dash tags back in and stops Aleister with a whip. Aleister dodges Dawson then sweeps the legs of both Dash and Dawson! Hot tag to Ricochet! The One and Only rallies on The Revival! Ricochet whips but Dawson reverses, only to run into Ricochet’s boot. Ricochet sees Dash coming and backslides him, TWO! Dawson swings but into a neckbreaker! Ricochet rolls Dash up, TWO!
Riocchet rocks Dawson with a right, then dodges Dash to try a crucifix. Dash holds ropes then sits down on the cover, but still holds ropes! The ref refuses to count, Ricochet sunset flips, TWO! Dash goes after Ricochet but gets a knee! Dawson returns but runs into Aleister’s boot. Ricochet huricanranas Dawson, then tackles Dash in the corner. Ricochet springboards for an uppercut! Fans fire up with him but Roode and Gable go after Dash!
Winners: The Revival, by disqualification; still Raw Tag Team Champions
The fight screws Aleister and Ricochet out of the titles, while the GLORIOUS Duo take their frustrations out on The Revival. Aleister and Ricochet shout at Roode and Gable, and now these four meet in the ring. “Is this how former champions act?” At least they were former champions, but Aleister and Ricochet don’t deserve to be champions so soon. Aleister turns away but Roode makes him turn back around, and a fight breaks out! Roode and Gable end up outside the ring, and both Aleister and Ricochet build speed! But they fake Roode and Gable out with springboard hero landings! Will the GLORIOUS Duo regret ruining this Raw Tag Team Championship match?
WWE celebrates March being Women’s History Month.
In line with that, Alexa Bliss works with Girl Up to discuss iconic women of the world. Ida B. Wells was a freed slave who became an investigative journalist, while Malala Yousafzai fought for equal education in her country. It is important for young women to know they can stand up for what they believe in.
Stephanie McMahon heads to the ring!
She of course has the Raw Women’s Championship and the Hold Harmless Agreement contract. Anything can happen on the Road to Wrestlemania, like the reformation of the Shield. Or in this case, Ronda Rousey relinquishing the title just weeks before the greatest show in sports entertainment. Stephanie replays the footage of Ronda wanting the McMahon Family to reinstate Becky so they could settle things, and when the answer was “No”, Ronda put the belt down. Stephanie says they’re going to start the road to fixing this situation. First to come out: Charlotte Flair! The Queen got handed her spot in the Wrestlemania match, and expected to be handed the title, but now she’ll have to fight for it at Fastlane. And of course, The Man, Becky Lynch! The Lass Kicker proudly wears her mugshot while she walks out with a crutch.
Becky and Charlotte stand in the ring together with Stephanie, and of course Philly is behind “Becky Balboa”. There needs to be a Raw Women’s Champion, so that is why we’re once again getting Charlotte VS Becky. But just one thing: with Becky still not at 100%, she needs to sign the Hold Harmless Agreement to absolve WWE of liability. Becky takes the contract, quickly looks it over, and Charlotte tells Becky to sign it. Unless Stephanie wants to just go ahead and hand that title to The Queen. Becky tells Charlotte she beat her on one leg in the Royal Rumble, and can beat her down here right now. Stephanie keeps the peace, this all has to be done officially. Then after that, go at it at Fastlane. Becky signs, and it’s official! But here comes Ronda!! She storms her way into the arena, but we go to break!
Raw returns once more, and Ronda’s made it out onto the ramp! Ronda storms her way into the ring, and asks Stephanie what she’s up to. Well Ronda didn’t leave her any choice! She didn’t vacate the title! She just gave Stephanie time to think it over. This was to include Becky, not exclude Ronda. Now give her the title back. Fans are divided but Stephanie has no choice, she gives the title back. Stephanie apologizes, and there is still business to be done. Becky Lynch VS Charlotte Flair will still happen. If Becky loses, that’s it. But if she wins, she’s added to the Raw Women’s Championship at Wrestlemania for a Triple Threat! Does that help? Is that good for Ronda and the WWE Universe? Fans say “YES! YES!”
Ronda knows Stephanie values her wallet over her pride. Ronda’s too much money and Stephanie knows it. Is this because she knows Ronda is able to go rogue whenever she wants? Ronda has had enough! Ronda works her ass off and yet the fans just boo! Fans chant for Becky while Ronda is the one in the ring! Ronda can break Charlotte and Becky with a sneeze! Damn the Man and Screw the Woo, no more Mrs. Nice Bitch! Ronda decks Charlotte and gets Becky in the armbar!! Becky doesn’t tap, and Charlotte comes in, only to run away again. Ronda glares at Becky, but Becky doesn’t back down. Becky takes Ronda’s rowdy strikes and judo throw!
Ronda hammers away on Becky but Charlotte slithers in from behind. Ronda gets the armbar again, but Charlotte decides to stay away. Charlotte will get Becky at Fastlane, but will Ronda make her regret it at Wrestlemania? Ronda keeps on Becky with another judo throw and hammers away, to give the other arm the armbar! Fans are divided again as Ronda finally lets Becky go. Ronda holds her title up high as she stands over Becky. Will Becky even be able to beat Charlotte now? Or will she overcome the odds and make Mania a Triple Threat?
Backstage interview with Stephanie McMahon.
After doing Ronda a favor, what is her reaction to this outburst? Well, Stephanie says this wasn’t a favor. Ronda finally showed her true colors. Ronda’s the animal Stephanie knew she was all along! There was no regard for the audience or her opponents. Stephanie almost feels sorry for Becky after seeing all that. Who does Ronda think she is to do that? Stephanie looks forward to Wrestlemania, because Ronda might finally get what’s got coming to her. Either way, it’ll be one hell of a main event. As a McMahon, she will address this behavior in a way that impacts Ronda’s career. Will Ronda come to regret going rogue?
Well this was definitely a wild Raw. And quite a bit of it is just proving the rumors true. The opening Six Man Tag, which was a good match, and The Shield’s newest reunion tie together, which falls into “Ambrose is leaving after Mania” story. Roman embraces living life to the fullest and wants his brothers back, and we’re going to get The Shield VS Corbin’s new pack, that match is going to be good. Also, I’m hoping The Shield wins and there are no turns, this should be the “Final Fist Bump” if we aren’t getting it at Wrestlemania. Then things can be whatever WWE is planning for Mania, i.e. Rollins VS Lesnar, Ambrose VS ??? and who knows what Roman will do. The same goes for Lashley and Lio finishing their story with Finn, and hopefully no more team-ups because McIntyre doesn’t need to be with anyone.
Natalya VS Ruby was obviously just filler to give Lacey Evans a reason to show up again. Lacey has a new nickname, which while good (because calling her the “Lady of WWE” doesn’t really work like “Lady of NXT” did) I’m not sure what it means. Is her gimmick being made generic? No more teaching the “nasties” a lesson? I’m honestly surprised she isn’t going to SmackDown, but maybe if Lacey stays on Raw, Nikki Cross can finally go over and help SAnitY get going. And while Colin’s segment with Strowman was hilarious, I really don’t want celebrity guest stars for Raw or Wrestlemania. Hopefully we don’t have to worry too much about them, aside from some segment on Wrestlemania.
Heavy Machinery sure is getting stronger. They win the Tag Gauntlet, that I honestly thought Hawkins & Ryder could’ve won to get that losing streak broken. Then the Raw Tag Team Championship match was great, but the DQ finish is fine, it keeps everyone strong. With Tommaso Ciampa’s leg being a concern after that Sheamus sunset flip powerbomb botch, DIY will be taking a step back, so that’s where Roode & Gable step in. We’ll get a Raw Tag Team Championship Triple Threat, which will still be great because Roode and Gable are a great team. It’ll be an amazing NXT alumni triple threat tag, and who knows if The Revival retains. If it’s not going to be DIY, I can’t be sure Aleister and Ricochet are going to be tag team champions together.
I did not see HHH’s segment going the way it did. He had great passion in his promo, as always, but I’m not sure if this is how they should frame the story. HHH making this as if it’s breaking the fourth wall and it’s a real fight, that’s already falling flat because we know this is still a pro-wrestling story. Make it sound personal, make it sound angry, but don’t act like this is about the “real” Ric, Batista and HHH. HHH VS Batista is going to be a great match, but the momentum from that shocking moment last week has already died down.
Naturally Tamina won against Sasha, thanks to Nia, but it’s so that both teams are even going into their tag title match. Sasha and Bayley are obviously going to win, because otherwise their moment on NXT would be a waste. Still hoping to see Bayley and Sasha take on a SmackDown team, an NXT team and a legends team at Mania. And finally, we see just how the WWE wants to take us to the Raw Women’s Championship Triple Threat, and it’s with a HEEL Ronda! They could’ve let Becky get in at least one real shot, but this is for her underdog story. Becky will win despite bad arms on top of legs, she’ll win that Triple Threat, and now I see how Ronda is taking time off after Mania: Stephanie might “suspend” Ronda once she’s no longer champion. Then Ronda can return alongside the MMA Horsewomen.
My Score: 8.2/10
AJPW Dream Power Series 2019 Results & Review (3/19/2019)
Mathew shows us some power! AJPW puts together a card that could rival anything all year. Does it live up to the expectations?
Mathew shows us some power! AJPW puts together a card that could rival anything all year. Does it live up to the expectations?
Welcome back to AJPW! We’re gonna talk about the last big show before this year’s Champions Carnival coming up in early April as we have a few title matches in this show that I couldn’t resist wanting to cover it.
We got some dealing with revenge along with one trying to make history. How’s this year’s Champions Carnival gonna shape up?
Let’s find out as we…dive right in.
- 0 Stars: Dave Meltzer
- 1 Star: Vince Russo
- 2 Stars: Tony Schiavone
- 3 Stars: Eric Bischoff
- 4 Stars: Bruce Prichard
- 5 Stars: Jim Cornette
Six Man Tag Team Match
Atsuki Aoyagi, Danji Tamura, & Hokuto Omori vs. Evolution (Atsushi Aoki, Hikaru Sato, & Yusuke Okada)
Review: Our opening contest is a six-man tag team match with our young lions, Atsuki Aoyagi, Danji Tamura, and Hokuto Omori taking on three members of Evolution, Atsushi Aoki, Hikaru Sato, and Yusuke Okada. Going up against three people from the junior division is a fair start to have them all fight each other in this tag bout and a better view of how the young guys are doing. Will Evolution school the young boys or will they somehow get one of the biggest wins in their starting careers?
As I’ve said, this match is mostly to showcase our future talent as they fight the vets of the game in the junior division. I do gotta admit that these three have definitely improved in the ring as they’re shaping up to be some of All Japan’s finest students. Evolution held off on their own and I’m glad they were their opponents for this match since they’re very easy to work with. Another thing I loved about the match is that they had a good amount of time instead of just being less than five minutes like how most matches will do. Yusuke and Hokuto are in the ring now and Yusuke would hit him with a Brainbuster for a two count and would quickly apply a Boston Crab onto him and Hokuto struggles to get to the ropes and once he does, Yusuke pulled him back in and would lock it in more as he would tap out to give Evolution the victory in a solid match.
Rating: Tony Schiavone and a half
Six Man Tag Team Match
Jun Akiyama, TAJIRI, & Ultimo Dragon vs. Black Menso-Re, Masanobu Fuchi, & Takao Omori
Review: We got another six-man tag team match here as Jun Akiyama, TAJIRI, and Ultimo Dragon will be taking on Black Menso-Re, Masanobu Fuchi, and Takao Omori. It’s been quite a while since we’ve seen Ultimo Dragon wrestling in All Japan, so I’ll never complain to see him in the ring. This is another match with the vets and Manso-Re for being a punching bag as it’ll most likely be a comedy style match. Which one of them will win?
Menso-Re starting with Ultimo Dragon as he wanted him first, but TAJIRI would slap Menso before the bell would ring and we would kick it off right now. They would do a little bit before Jun and Takao get tagged in, but we all care about TAJIRI and Fuchi getting tagged in now as Fuchi would try to get his hands on him. TAJIRI would be the sneaky heel with leaving the ring to sit with the crowd so he could avoid contact in the match. TAJIRI would get back in the ring only to tag in Ultimo as the crowd would just boo TAJIRI. Fuchi would do his antics with the punch to the forehead as the crowd eats it up but everything would backfire on Fuchi as he would miss a Dropkick to make the crowd boo Ultimo which is a shocker. Ultimo would kick Fuchi and attempt an Asai DDT but Fuchi would turn it around to a Backslide as Ultimo would kick out. Both TAJIRI and Jun would both make Fuchi miss a Dropkick and taunt him right after to make the crowd boo them. Ultimo would get Fuchi in the La Magistral and he gets the win for his team in a rather entertaining match.
Rating: Tony Schiavone and a quarter
Tag Team Match
NEXTREAM (Yoshitatsu & Yumi Aoyagi) vs. Sweeper (Jake Lee & Ryouji Sai)
Review: Our next match here is a tag team match as NEXTREAM members, Yoshitatsu and Yuma Aoyagi will be taking on members of Sweeper, Jake Lee and Ryouji Sai. Since Naoya is no longer Yumi’s partner, he’s gonna be paired off with Yoshitatsu this time around. Since all four of them are in the Champions Carnival, a win for either of them would give them some momentum leading to the tournament. Which one of these two teams will win and what will be the future payoff?
It seems like Yoshitatsu has a little gripe with Jake Lee in this match as he seems to be disgruntled when he was in the ring with him, especially when Jake would just best him during the first sequence with the chaining. Ryouji and Yuma are in the ring now and Ryouji with a series of kicks in the match and have him in a submission before Yoshi would break the hold and just stared at Jake again. Yuma is really growing out on his own as an individual and you can see that when he’s not partner with Naoya. Yuma would have Jake in a Headlock but Jake would attempt a Backdrop Driver as Yuma flipped it into a Crossbody as Jake kicked out at two. Once Jake kicked out, Yuma would try to turn the pin into a European Clutch as Jake kicked out at 2 as even the referee was shocked by this. Yuma would run into him as Jake kneed him in the face and hits him with a Backdrop Driver as he pinned Yuma for the victory.
Rating: Eric Bischoff and a quarter
Six Man Tag Team Match
Atsushi Maruyama, KAI, & Zeus vs. Bomber (Dylan James & Joe Doering,) & Francisco Akira
Review: We have another six-man tag team match taking place as Atsushi Maruyama, KAI, and Zeus team up to take on Dylan James, Joe Doering, and Francisco Akira. KAI recently failed at Dragon Gate to win the Open the Twin Gate Championships, so he could at least try to win for his team but I think Zeus has a lot on his plate when it comes to their opponent since Dylan James and Joe Doering are a strong team to beat and wants to try and look powerful leading into the Carnival. Which one of these two teams will win the match?
Zeus and Dylan would charge at each other right away to test their strengths with also some chops and a test of strength as the two appear to be evenly matched, which is no surprised. KAI gets tagged in and he calls Joe to get tagged in since he wants to fight him as Dylan honors that request and lets Joe have a turn on the fun. Joe would start to make him regret that decision as he had the upper hand on him at first but KAI would hit a few Dropkicks on him but Joe still wouldn’t go down as he tackled him and went for an Elbow Drop before KAI moved and quickly tagged in Atsushi. The juniors get a turn on the fun as Francisco showed more of his impressive ability. One problem I had with the match was that the last few minutes are incredibly sloppy with Atsushi missing most of his kicks to Joe in the corner, Francisco slipping on his Moonsault to the outside, which he thankfully caught himself and redid it again. The finish would be with Joe hitting Atsushi with the Powerbomb and it looked like he got knocked out as he took the pinfall despite his shoulder being kinda up, so it looked botched but the referee still has a job to do as Joe just left the ring and walked to the back possibly frustrated.
Rating: Eric Bischoff
World Junior Heavyweight Title Match
Koji Iwamoto (c) vs. Kotaro Suzuki
Review: Our first title match of the show is Koji Iwamoto defending his Junior Heavyweight Championship against Kotaro Suzuki. The two fought each other in the A Block of the Junior Battle of Glory Tournament where Kotaro defeated Koji in the match but would eventually fail to win as Koji would actually be the one to win it all. Koji decided to defend the title against Kotaro since it was only fair due to him winning the match and wants to avenge that loss. Will Koji be able to retain his title again or will Kotaro get the upper hand on him again?
Kotaro showed no mercy to the champion as fought him to the outside and Slingshots him into the turnbuckle post and DDT’s him face first into the mat as you hear the loud thud and damage has been done to Koji. Kotaro has beaten Koji before so he knows what he has to do to try and defeat him again as he worked on Koji’s neck a bit during the match and gets the heat from the crowd. I know Kotaro is a Freelancer and is mostly at NOAH right now due to being a champion there, I hope he does stick around a little bit longer since I feel like the division could really use him as he’s a very talented individual. Koji would try to outrun him after he dodged him to the outside and it appeared as if Kotaro would botch but he quickly caught himself and dived to the outside to land on Koji, getting the better of him again.
Koji would finally be able to get a comeback as he hits an STO onto the ring apron to knock Koji down and most of the time, he would try to hit the Koko no Geijutsu but Kotaro would hold his ground to make sure he wouldn’t hit it but Koji would be able to deliver a German Suplex and a Dragon Suplex. Kotaro would land a few punches before Koji tried to hit the move again, but Kotaro would hold his ground again and kick his leg out to work on his neck before landing Gory Bomb Special and tops it off with the La Magistral for the pin and Koji would kick out various times whenever Koji would try to roll out of it and was so close to having a new champion. Koji would just use this time to hit a couple of STO’s in a row to weaken him down a bit. Koji would go for it again but he catches him for a Back Suplex to save himself a bit. Kotaro would now hit not one but two Excaliburs onto him to try and end it as Koji would somehow kick out of it again. It all came down to his as Koji would attempt the Koko no Geijutsu again as Kotaro would stop himself to pin him for a two count and they both would spin around as Koji would hit it this him but he picked him up to hit the Koko no Geijutsu properly this time and pins him to retain the title! After the match, various people from the junior division would come out and it looks like they all want a shot at the Junior Heavyweight Championship but Koji would have to pick one of them to be his opponent. It does look like, however, that Koji doesn’t have a clear opponent right now as he left the ring but I guess we’ll see soon.
Rating: Eric Bischoff and three quarters
World Tag Team Title Match
Strong BJ (Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi) (c) vs. Violence Giant (Shuji Ishikawa & Suwama)
Review: Our next title match for this show is Strong BJ defending their titles against the team that they defeated them for, The Violence Giant. Strong BJ defeated them on January 13th to win the titles and after they retain their titles on the February 24 show, Violence Giant requested a rematch to bring the titles back home on their turf this time instead of the BJW show. If it’s anything like their previous match, it’s sure to be hard hitting and a not miss. Will Strong BJ remain on top or will Violence Giant bring the belts back home?
Shuji and Daisuke would be the ones to start off our match here with an incredible display of power as the two were unable to budge and they would tag in their respective partners. Suwama and Yuji were both also very hard-hitting as they would now fight outside of the ring as these two teams are making it personal. Strong BJ has been doing great work during this rivalry with the Violence Giant and they would even give Suwama a big beatdown but the former ace would even try his best to fight them off, even when he was on the corner and would kick Yuji to show his fighting spirit. Suwama would hit a Dropkick to save himself for a little bit and would tag in Shuji for the hot tag and Shuji does indeed come in hot with his Lariats, knees, anything he can throw along with the kitchen sink.
Yuji would brawl with Shuji to deliver some chops while Shuji would give him a couple of forearms and a headbutt to try and daze him but Yuji is pumped up and slams him down with a few Lariats. Once Yuji would hit another Lariat to Shuji, he would kick out at one that time around before getting hit with another one with a two count. What’s it gonna take to take Shuji down for good? Yuji would get to the top rope to hit the Splash and it looks like this could be it but Suwama would break the pinfall to save his partner. Strong BJ would have them up for the Torture Racks but they would get down for Suwama to hit a Back Suplex while Shuji hits a Dragon Suplex. Shuji is alone with Yuji again and would hit another Dragon Suplex and a Running Knee to get him out for another two count, he was so close! Shuji would pick Yuji up real quick for the Fire Thunder and goes for the pin as Daisuke breaks the pinfall this time around as Suwama would get Daisuke out of the ring. Shuji knew what he had to do to try and end it as he hits the Giants Slam and pins Yuji to win back the titles! Hell of a match and definitely topped their previous encounter at BJW. I would love to see Violence Giant get a fair and dominating run with this reign, can’t wait to see where this goes now.
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a half
— 全日本プロレス/alljapan (@alljapan_pw) March 14, 2019
Triple Crown Championship
Kento Miyahara (c) vs. Naoya Nomura
Review: This is our third title match and the main event of the show as we have Kento Miyahara defending his Triple Crown Championship against former NEXTREAM member, Naoya Nomura. On the February 24th show, Naoya Nomura would defeat Dylan James in a singles match and Kento Miyahara would have his second successful title defense against Suwama. After Kento would defeat Suwama, Naoya would come in to make the challenge to his stablemate and announce his departure from the NEXTREAM group in the process, leading him to also vacate the All Asia Tag Team Championship with Yuma Aoyagi. Kento is now 30 years old and while it’s his third title defense in this run, this will be his first time defending it while no longer in his twenties. If Kento can defeat Naoya, he’ll be the champion leading into the Champions Carnival and won’t defend the title until the tournament is over. Will Kento be able to retain it once again or does Naoya pull the surprise victory?
Kento came in here with a plan since he knew what he was gonna do to Naoya once he challenged him to this match, he didn’t wanna go easy on him despite being former teammates but he wants to see how badly Naoya wants the spotlight on him. They were fairly matched during the lock-up part of the match and they would start to fight outside for a little bit as Naoya would get Kento down as he taunts him when he got back in the ring. Naoya would hit him with a big forearm before going onto the apron to jump and Kento catches him with a knee and has him right where he wants him now. This is where Kento would just attack him with a few Headbutts as Naoya would try to deliver one to him but Kento gives him multiple ones as a counterattack and this is why you don’t mess with the champion.
Naoya would eventually make a comeback after being kicked around by Kento as he quickly got up to charge at him with a shoulder tackle and you can hear that too. He would hit a few more along with another forearm to the face as he goes for the Brainbuster but Kento would struggle to make sure he didn’t hit it and has Naoya over the ropes but wait, Naoya grabbed his leg to pull him over as he attempted a Death Valley Driver onto the apron as Kento jumped off to hit a Blackout. The two would be on the turnbuckle and Naoya gets behind him to attempt a German Suplex as Kento struggles, but Naoya would slam Kento’s head on the post and gets off the turnbuckle to hit the German Suplex as both men are down. Naoya would go to the top rope to hit the first Splash as Kento kicked out but Naoya would quickly get up again to hit one more as Kento still kicked out.
Kento would eventually hit him with a Blackout at full force and hits him with a German Suplex for another two count. Kento looks like he’s going for the Shutdown German Suplex Hold as Naoya would kick his knee out and hit him with a Spear and the two are down again. Kento would hit another Blackout on the back of his head and tries the German Suplex Hold once again as Naoya would still kick out at two as Kento is starting to get concerned with what he has to do now. Kento tried the Shutdown German Suplex Hold again as Naoya broke out of it and picked him up Fisherman style and dropped him on his head and picked him up for the Death Valley Driver as Kento fought him off but Naoya would hit him with a flurry of forearms to daze him and hits the Spear with the roll-up as Kento kicked out at two again! Naoya picked him back up but Kento would go back to delivering the Blackouts and it looks like Naoya is all out of fight as Kento finally hits the Shutdown German Suplex Hold to get the pinfall victory and his third successful title defense. Great match and a very impressive showing to Naoya but Kento is just still better than him right now. Kento will now officially be the Triple Crown Champion leading into the Champions Carnival. Three defenses down, eight more to go.
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a quarter
Overall: I thought it was a very solid show from top to bottom but the last three title matches were what sold it to me. I would highly recommend that you look out for those matches if you can find them online or subscribe to the streaming service and if you’re not already subscribed, what the hell is wrong with you? Get on that!
Favorite Match: Strong BJ (Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi) vs. Violence Giant (Shuji Ishikawa & Suwama)
Least Favorite Match: Jun Akiyama, TAJIRI, & Ultimo Dragon vs. Black Menso-Re, Masanobu Fuchi, & Takao Omori
Mitchell’s WWE NXT Results & Report! (3/20/19)
Triple H addresses an NXT Championship dilemma!
NXT sees the return of HHH, but under sad circumstances. The Game will address Tommaso Ciampa’s injury, and what happens with his precious championship!
- NXT Championship Contenders Fatal 5 Way: Ricochet VS Adam Cole VS Aleister Black VS Velveteen Dream VS Matt Riddle; Cole wins and will face Johnny Gargano for the vacated NXT Championship at TakeOver: New York.
PLAY BY PLAY
Triple H opens NXT!
Full Sail is happy to see The Game, but he comes out holding the NXT Championship. HHH goes to the ring and also picks up a mic. He takes a moment to hear the fans chant for him and NXT before getting to business. “From those cheers, I don’t have to remind you of just how special this place is.” The building, the environment, the fans. “NXT is something special.” It is here in NXT and the ring that “dreams can become possibilities.” For some, the dream starts in NXT. For others, it takes a long time, maybe years of scratching and clawing, going up and down a road, just to get to this ring. But in reality, for every superstar, their dream can end at any moment.
HHH was going to announce the main event of TakeOver: New York, an epic years in the making, of Johnny “Wrestling” Gargano VS Psycho Killer, Tommaso Ciampa. But the reality has made that impossible now. Ciampa’s dream is on hold, because he needs neck surgery. That surgery has taken place, and now Ciampa must relinquish the title. But the beauty of NXT is that when one dream ends, another begins. And that new dream begins right here! Gargano continues his dream and he WILL compete for the NXT Championship! But against who? We find that out tonight! Five men step into this ring! Ricochet VS Adam Cole VS Aleister Black VS Velveteen Dream VS Matt Riddle!
Those five men fight for an opportunity to live a dream in New York, on the biggest stage yet, and compete for the title against Gargano. It will be decisive in New York, 2 Out of 3 Falls! The winner will walk out the NEW NXT Champion! A major match of former, current and future champions, but who will have a match with Gargano to determine NXT’s future?
Backstage interview with various superstars.
The Finest thinks Cathy Kelly was waiting for him. But since he showed up, what is his reaction to the big news tonight? Well tonight’s main event will be great, but Kona Reeves knows it won’t be The Finest. The Forgotten Sons appear next, and they don’t care about tonight’s main event. They are more concerned with next week’s main event, because in case people have already forgotten, they’re in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic FINALS! Aleister Black & Ricochet need to not forget Steve Cutler & Wesley Blake are coming. They hope one of those two win, so that they’ll be too focused on something else. Then it’ll be that much easier for the Forgotten Sons to go on and win the NXT Tag Team Championships. Then no one will forget them ever again.
NXT Media shares Tommaso Ciampa’s trip to Birmingham, Alabama.
This is not the first time Ciampa has been to the WWE’s preferred surgical facility. Ciampa has had one knee and both shoulders, but now the neck leaves him no choice but to have another surgery. The pressure on his spinal cord could paralyze Ciampa, so this is not just for his career, but for his life as he knows it. There are various bone graftings and now it’s just about time. When and where will the greatest sports entertainer in NXT make another return?
NXT’s contenders speak.
The King of Flight and the Embodiment of the End are one of the most unexpected duos in the tag team division. They work together because they expect the best from each other. But there’s no misunderstanding, it will be every man for himself tonight.
Velveteen Dream is already the NXT North American Champion, but he wants the biggest spotlight possible. The way he sees it, tonight’s Fatal 5 Way will be #DreamOver. And when Dream wins it all, then Dream will just be the first ever dual champion, on the grandest stage in NXT history.
The Original King of Bros is still undefeated, and is stoked to have such a big opportunity so soon. Riddle worked his ace off to get here, and nothing will stop him from going to NXT TakeOver: New York and becoming the new NXT Champion, bro.
Adam Cole says he is the one who makes history in NXT, and no one is more deserving! The inaugural North American Champion wants to be the first to also have the top title. He takes on four of the best to then go to the Barclays Center. That’s the very place Cole made his debut and held that title high above his head. He’ll do it again, when the announcement is made that he is the new NXT Champion! And that is Undisputed!
Backstage interviews with The Sky Pirates.
Io Shirai & Kairi Sane are very excited for tonight’s main event to see who goes to TakeOver. And speaking of, they’re both going, too, because they’re in a Fatal 4 Way for the NXT Women’s Championship. Are they concerned the title and their friendship will get in the way? Not at all! May the best woman win! Io and Kairi both want the title, and will fight each other if they need to. “Gurl, uh-uh!”
Bianca Belair knows this isn’t her business, but this shouldn’t be a Fatal 4. Shayna got in the way and kept Bianca from beating Io. And this doesn’t have anything to do with the little pirate! But now it does, so in New York, The EST will run through both of them to become the new NXT Women’s Champion. No one can do anything about it, because she still feels Un-De-Fea-Ted. Io holds Kairi back while Bianca takes her leave. Whether it’s Bianca, Kairi or Io, will there be a new Women’s Champion alongside a new NXT Champion in New York?
NXT Championship Contenders Fatal 5 Way: Ricochet VS Adam Cole VS Aleister Black VS Velveteen Dream VS Matt Riddle!
The One and Only, Panama City Playboy, Dutch Destroyer, Patrick Clark Experience and Original Bro wage war like NXT has never seen! Johnny Wrestling awaits, who moves on to challenge him for the vacant throne?
The fans are already fired up for “All These Guys!” as the bell rings. Cole goes after Aleister than Ricochet while Riddle chases Dream. Riddle originally wanted after Dream for the North American title, so why not have that out here? Dream has other ideas as he throws Riddle into barriers then gets back in the ring. Aleister and Ricochet work together against Cole then Dream. Ricochet clotheslines Cole out but Cole drags Ricochet out. Dream rolls ALeister, TWO! Riddle returns but Dream throws him back out. Aleister waistlocks but Dream throws him off. Dream runs into Aleister’s boots then Aleister hops up. Aleister leaps but Dream gets under. Dream lifts Aleister but Aleister slips out. Aleister sweeps but Dream jumps over and rolls through! Aleister slips out again to cradle, TWO!
Dream runs into Aleister’s boot! Aleister runs but Cole trips and drags him out. Cole swings but gets Aleister’s kick! Aleister clibms up but Dream sends him back down. Ricochet mule kicks and whips Dream but Dream reverses. Ricochet rolls off the back and handsprings to headscissor and dropkick! Dream bails out but Riddle’s back. Riddle gut wrenches Ricochet, then holds on to do it again! And again! Full Sail is thunderous for the “Bro!” but Cole is after him. Riddle standing switches but gets an enziguri from Cole. Cole stomps a mudhole, then hits his pose BAYBAY! ALeister attacks but Cole reverses. The Unexpected Duo work together, leg sweep and standing moonsault! Cole gets away, and now the tag team phenomenons face each other. They shake hands and circle. But Cole disrupts it by shoving Ricochet into Aleister!
Aleister falls out and Cole stomps away on Ricochet. Cole hits a neckbreaker then covers, TWO! Cole keeps Riddle out with a right hand then goes after Ricochet. He snap suplexes and covers, TWO! Ricochet just escapes, but Cole boots Aleister back out! Cole drags Ricochet up for a big back suplex! Cover, TWO! Another close call but Cole can’t put Ricochet away. Cole goes after Dream but Dream shoulders in. Ricochet somersault shotgun dropkicks Cole! Dream knees Ricochet out then throws heavy hands on Cole. Dream whips but Cole reverses, only for Dream to slide out. Cole runs over but gets an uppercut! Dream climbs up and ax handles Alesiter out.
Dream tosses Cole out then climbs, to LEAP for a big ax handle! He puts Cole in fast and climbs back up. Purple Rain- Riddle gets Dream with a German! Aleister kicks but Riddle reverses! Riddle wants and gets the BroMission!! But Dream breaks it with a falling elbow! Dream stalks Riddle as fans fire up again. Dream tosses Riddle out and turns his attention to Aleister. Aleister fires off a strike fest, sweep to knee! Cole returns but Aleister is ready, two-for-one quebrada! Aleister roundhouses Dream, covers, TWO! Dream survives but Aleister keeps going. Aleister lifts Dream with his foot, but Cole drags Aleister out by the other foot. Cole sends Aleister into steel steps! Cole returns to the ring, only to meet Riddle. They were going to fight to see who contends for the North American title, so now they have it out!
Riddle gets the edge with open palm CHOP after CHOP! Cole stomps Riddle’s bare foot! But his superkick is caught, Riddle gets Cole in a Bromission! But again Dream breaks it up with a leaping ax handle! Dream haymakers Riddle but Riddle ROCKS Dream with that right! Cole hits Riddle now, but Riddle hits back. Dream, Riddle and Cole brawl on their knees in a triangle of strikes. They slowly stand, throwing big hands, forearms and uppercuts. Riddle CHOPS Dream, Cole BOOTS Riddle, Dream SUPERKICKS Cole! Ricochet returns, rolls and PELES Dream down! Cole SUPERKICKS Ricochet but Riddle KNEES Cole! Aleister returns and fires off with Riddle, double roundhouses take them both out! All five men are down and Full Sail reaches a fever pitch!
Ricochet staggers up and goes after Riddle. He puts the Bro in the drop zone then climbs up. Fans hope they “Fight Forever!” as Cole intercepts Ricochet. Cole climbs up to join Ricochet, but Ricochet resists. Dream adds on, climbing up to join them. They brawl and Aleister staggers over. Riddle follows, and they’re all on the second rope! It’s a Double Russian Leg Sweep SUPERPLEX! All five men are down again and fans know “This is Awesome!” The referee checks on everyone in turn and they’re all okay to continue. Fans build to a rally as the five slowly stir. Cole, Riddle and Ricochet bail out while Dream meets Aleister. Dream and Aleister trade haymakers on their knees. Aleister fires off hand after hand but Dream powers him to a corner. Aleister boots Dream away then hops up, Meteora!
Dream’s up but gets a roundhouse and a German! But Riddle sentons the bridge! Riddle drags Aleister up in a deadlift Fisherman Buster! Cradle, but Cole breaks it! Cole drags Riddle up but Riddle fires off fast hands! Riddle misses, gets a SUPERKICK, and Last Ride brainbuster! Cover, but Ricochet breaks it! Ricochet drags Cole up but Cole breaks free. Ricochet fakes Cole out for a boot and an ax kick! He keeps going, fireman’s carry but Cole rakes eyes! SUPERKICK to the front, SUPERKICK to the back! Cole brings the knee pad down but misses the Last Shot Wizard to get a Reverse-Rrana! Cole rolls all the way out and Ricochet can’t believe it. But Ricochet also sees a prime target, and FLIES with the Sasuke Special! Ricochet wipes Cole out but hurries to get back up.
Dream returns to the ring but so does Riddle. The would-be North American Championship showdown happens as Riddle throws chops. Riddle swings up and around Dream’s clothesline to powerbomb, but Dream slips out! Dream wants but Riddle denies the Sidewinder, to wring Dream out for a Bro Trigger! Riddle reels Dream into the BroMission! Dream flails but Cole yanks the ref out! No Disqualifications, but plenty of consequences as Riddle BOOTS Cole! Riddle turns around into BLACK MASS! Aleister turns around into Dream Valley Driver! Dream hurries to the top rope, but Ricochet’s right up for a SUPER STEINER onto Aleister and Cole! Ricochet hurries up for his own, SHOOTING STAR onto Riddle! Cover, but LAST SHOT!! Cole covers, Cole wins!!
Winner: Adam Cole, by pinfall; will face Johnny Gargano for the NXT Championship
You never see the shot that takes you down! Cole came outta nowhere, and now he’s going to New York City! Will Cole finally make the NXT Championship #Undisputed? Or will Gargano once again become Johnny Champion?
I’m going to call this episode a one match classic, because how else would you describe it? First it is unfortunate for Ciampa to again be out with an injury, and an injury as serious as the neck, so I’m sure I speak for everyone by saying get well soon, Psycho Killer. But HHH had such a great speech to open the night, and it is very true, this became a massive opportunity for another superstar to move up. The five men chosen were the right choices, and this made for an amazing Fatal 5 Way.
However, it makes a lot of sense for this to be Adam Cole’s night. Aleister & Ricochet are not only busy on the main roster, but they’re in the Dusty Rhodes Classic finals, where I would think they defeat the Forgotten Sons and move on to the War Raiders. It wouldn’t be very good to give those two double duty on TakeOver Friday and possibly something on Mania Sunday. Then Velveteen Dream VS Matt Riddle can and will still happen, and that is going to be great. It would’ve been too epic if Dream was trying for both titles, even if it’s Wrestlemania Weekend. Gargano VS Cole is going to be great and really could go either way, but I feel that since Gargano VS Ciampa was the plan, Gargano might’ve won that title to have his triumphant victory on the biggest WWE weekend of the year.
My Score: 8.6/10