It’s the last SmackDown before Stomping Grounds!
In an attempt to clear the air from the last few weeks, The Goddess again invites SmackDown Women’s Champion, Bayley, onto another Moment of Bliss. Will Bayley keep her cool when confront Alexa Bliss over her blatant lies? Or will things continue to play into Alexa’s plan?
- Xavier Woods VS Dolph Ziggler; Ziggler wins.
- Heavy Machinery VS The B-Team; Heavy Machinery wins.
- Tag Team Elimination Match: Drew McIntyre & Elias VS The Awesome Truth; McIntyre & Elias win.
- WWE 24/7 Championship: R-Truth VS Drake Maverick; Maverick wins and becomes the new WWE 24/7 Champion.
- 2 Out of 3 Falls Tag: Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn VS Seth Rollins & Kofi Kingston; Rollins & Kingston win.
PLAY BY PLAY
Awwwwww~ SmackDown! Don’t you dare be sour!
Feel~ the POWER~ as The New Day opens the show! They fling more flapjacks as they make their way to the ring! And even more when they’re in the ring. The New Day grab mics to welcome fans to the show, “BABYYYYYY~!” Everyone knows that Sunday is Stomping Grounds, and we will see Kofi Kingston (fans cheer) take on Dolph Ziggler (fans boo) in a Steel Cage (more cheers)! But only if Ziggler makes it through Xaiver Woods. To keep things fresh, Big E would like to make the last hour of SmackDown “the freaky hour.” It involves a Slip ‘n’ Slide, themselves, and- Dolph Ziggler comes out to interrupt the “typical New Day” antics that distract the fans. “All the smoke and mirrors in the world just to distract from what we all know from Super Showdown.” Kofi doesn’t deserve to be champion!
In fact, without The New Day, Kofi would be nothing! And on Sunday, the New Day won’t be able to save Kofi. Kofi is not able to stand on his own. The next time Kofi goes home to Ghana, that won’t be a celebration but an apology tour. Because Kofi will have to look at those people, from family to friends to fans, and tell them that when he was backed against the wall inside a Steel Cage all by himself, he failed! Fans boo and Kofi glares, but Ziggler grins. Fans rally behind Kofi but Ziggler tells them all to pay attention. At Stomping Grounds, Ziggler will slam Kofi into unforgiving steel, grind his face into the cage, and then kick ass and take names. #ItWILLbeZiggler!
Kofi wants Ziggler to back up. Ziggler’s talking like Kofi doesn’t know Steel Cage matches. Maybe he forgot where this journey began. It was in the Elimination Chamber! Kofi knows the brutalities of the confines of a cage, and he’s good with it. Because whether it’s a pin or an escape, or even a complete knockout that lets Kofi just walk out, it will happen. Kofi will win at Stomping Grounds! And he will remain THE, W, W, E, World, Heavy, Weight, CHAMPION~! But but but that’s Sunday. Ziggler should worry about tonight, because Kofi’s brethren in Woods is itching to “pop you in the mouth” all over again!
Ziggler tells Kofi to pay attention to that very match. “Don’t think for one second that I forgot what Woods did to me at Super Showdown.” It was Woods’ fault Ziggler lost. And after tonight, Woods will never be able to help Kofi again. And then on Sunday, “all the positivity, all the bad inside jokes, all the fun laughs, the colors the loudness.” All that pretending to be something Kofi’s not, “comes crumbling down” when he’s in that cage with Ziggler. Stomping Grounds will be where Kofi stops being WWE Champion. Because it should’ve been ZIGGLER! #ItShouldHaveBeenME, and #ItWILLBeMe! But will it be Ziggler against an angry Woods up next?
Xavier Woods VS Dolph Ziggler!
SmackDown returns with the bell and Ziggler circles with Woods. The go around and Woods manages to counter the takedown to a mount. Woods switches to a waistlock and makes it a cover, ONE! Ziggler gets Woods down for a cover, ONE! The two back off and Ziggler swipes at Kofi and Big E. He ties up with Woods again and Woods gets around to the waistlock. Ziggler goes around but Woods rolls him, ONE! Ziggler keeps on Woods to roll him, ONE! Woods and Ziggler back off and go again. Woods grabs the arm and wrenches, but Ziggler pushes him to ropes. The ref calls for the ropebreak but Ziggler gives a shove. Woods shoves back! Then drop toeholds Ziggler onto ropes! Dropkick bounces Ziggler off! Cover, TWO!
Woods keeps on Ziggler with a headlock. Ziggler holds the ropes so Woods has to let go. Ziggler kicks low at the knee! Woods scrambles but Ziggler is on him. Ziggler rakes Woods’ face on ropes! Then drops him with a neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Ziggler keeps on Woods, going after the arm. He cranks Woods back in a chinlock but fans rally up. Woods fights out and throws body shots. Ziggler hits back and whips, but Woods reverses. Woods runs into the corner but into a boot! Ziggler bumps Woods on buckles then whips him corner to corner. Woods bounces off buckles but boots Ziggler back! Woods hits the Honor Roll! Fans fire up as Woods climbs up! Woods aims but out come Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn! They attack Big E and Kofi! Ziggler trips Woods up in the distraction!
The referee shouts at Kevin & Sami and EJECTS them! But Woods takes them out with a leaping crossbody! With those two taken care of, Woods gets back in, only to get the satellite DDT! Cover, TWO!! Woods survives as SmackDown goes picture in picture.
The referee checks on Woods but he’s okay. Wait, the New Day is also ejected!? Now Woods is all alone with Ziggler as Ziggler drags Woods up. Ziggler bumps Woods off buckles but Woods turns it around to bump him! But then Ziggler turns it around to kick out Woods’ leg. Ziggler walks around Woods, taunting him to get up. Woods drags himself up but Ziggler is waiting, with a big dropkick! Cover, TWO! Ziggler keeps his cool as he looms over Woods. Ziggler rakes Woods’ eyes with his fingers! The referee reprimands Ziggler while Woods scrambles away. Ziggler drags Woods up again with a headlock, and has Woods in a crossface chicken wing! Woods resists and arm-drags Ziggler off! But the misses in the corner! Ziggler covers, TWO!
Ziggler keeps his cool as he drags Woods up, again raking the eyes! The ref counts and Ziggler lets up at 4, to then grind Woods down with an armlock. Ziggler grinds his forearm into Woods’ face, too, but Woods endures. Woods starts to get to his feet, and he throws body shots on Ziggler. Ziggler turns Woods but Woods backslide counters! TWO, but Woods rallies with big forearms! Mule kick and front kick, and SmackDown returns to single picture as Ziggler reverse the whip. Woods dodges and slides to hit the roaring forearm! Woods flounders to a cover, TWO! Both men are down from exhaustion, but fans know “This is Awesome!”
Ziggler gets to ropes and Woods goes to the opposite end. Both men stand, and Woods runs into a boot! But then whips Ziggler out of the ring! Woods builds speed to wreck Ziggler with a dropkick! Ziggler hits the desk! Woods puts Ziggler back in, and trophy lifts Ziggler! For a BIG gut buster drop! Cover, TWO!! Woods keeps his focus as he grits his teeth. Ziggler rolls out to the apron but Woods follows. Woods drags Ziggler up, but Ziggler shoves him into a post. Then a SUPERKICK blasts Woods off the apron to the floor! Ziggler drags Woods up into the ring and wants him to stand again. Fans rally up for Woods but Ziggler stalks him, ZIGZAG! But Woods rolls just enough to avoid a cover.
Ziggler doesn’t want to end it here, anyway! He drags Woods up and puts him on the ropes, to pull the arms! Ziggler lets up at the ref’s count, to then SUPERKICK the defenseless Woods! Cover, Ziggler wins!
Winner: Dolph Ziggler, by pinfall
The Show-Off wins tonight, showing no mercy. With a Steel Cage match being No Disqualifications, will Ziggler show that same lack of remorse in order to take the title from Kofi? Will Kofi do the same just to avenge Woods?
Several SmackDown superstars line up outside Baron Corbin’s private locker room.
Shelton Benjamin and The B-Team know the risk of being Corbin’s special guest referee given Seth Rollins’ mood lately. But it’s all so Corbin can finally win a title. Benjamin plans on using Corbin right back. Matt Hardy comes out of the office! Senor Benjamin, you’re next. That’s Mr. Benjamin, Matt. But either way, Benjamin does take his turn “auditioning” for the part of guest referee. Will Corbin make a decision before the night is over? Will Rollins veto it with more chair shots?
It’s another SmackDown edition of A Moment of Bliss!
The last time The Goddess and her hit talk show were on SmackDown, it turned into a Triple Threat Contender’s Match for the SmackDown Women’s Championship. And though Alexa was the Wild Card from Raw, she won the match and now faces Bayley at Stomping Grounds! SmackDown returns as she, and “friend” Nikki Cross, make their entrance. Nikki will be in Alexa’s corner on Sunday because, well, Alexa has claimed Bayley is a bully. Alexa welcomes everyone to the show, but where is her coffee?! Bayley appears with it! And is drinking it. Yes, well… Why is Alexa not surprised? This is like what Alexa was telling nikki before. Bayley defends she’d never do that. She should say this now, but- But she’s the reason she cost them the women’s tag titles? No, that Alexa is using Nikki.
Hear that, Nikki? Is it time to do this? Bayley says she’s had enough of Alexa’s talking behind everyone’s back! If she has a problem, say it to her face! Alexa stands up and accepts that challenge. Alexa knows the real Bayley. When she started in NXT, she saw through Bayley. Everyone made Alexa feel like she didn’t belong. Alexa tried turning to the nice girl, Bayley, yet even she made Alexa feel little. It was Charlotte who was nice to Alexa! But then Bayley acts all nice dressing like she’s from Forever 21, saying she’s like the fans. In reality, she’s not a hugger, she’s a liar! Classic Alexa, making things up that never happened. She did this to Nia Jax, to Mickie James, and Bayley has never lied to them. Alexa just can’t handle the truth. And the truth is: Alexa isn’t a goddess, just a spoiled princess!
Alexa isn’t entitled, she’s just better. And she always have been! She has a natural gift for this! She doesn’t imitate legends and doesn’t wait for autographs, she’s not worthy? Bayley has never needed to manipulate like Alexa to become SmackDown Women’s Champion. Alexa says Bayley is just a placeholder. And she will always be a placeholder! Because she peaked in NXT! The one person that Bayley found so undeserving is the one living out the life she’s always wanted. Bayley hits Alexa! The brawl is on, and Nikki helps her new friend! Nikki still believes Alexa, despite what just happened. And then Alexa gets Bayley with that killer punch! The Goddess and Cross leave the champ down and out, but will it happen this way at Stomping Grounds?
Apollo Crews finds Zelina Vega backstage.
Can she help him with something? Well where she goes, Andrade goes, right? He has been looking for him. Is that true? Or is he just here to flirt with her? What? Just tell Almas Apollo is looking for him. Zelina “flirts” with him, to distract him from Almas’ blindside attack! Almas lays Apollo out by throwing him into trunks! And again, Chad Gable is taking notes? Firstly, will Apollo get payback on El Idolo in the ring? Secondly, what is Gable studying exactly?
Heavy Machinery VS The B-Team!
The literally biggest team on SmackDown gets a shot at those tag team titles on Sunday, which is exactly why “The Planet’s Tag Team Champions” are on commentary for this match. Daniel Bryan & Rowan gave a pep talk to Bo Dallas and Curt Axel, but will that be enough to survive the #BlueCollarSolid Tucker Knight & Otis Dozovic?
The teams sort out and Tucker starts against Axel. Bo distracts and that allows Axel to club away on Tucker. The ref backs Axel off but he knees Tucker back down. The B-Team chants as they stomp, tag, and stomp more. Fans echo the chant as the B-Team tags and mugs Tucker, then Bo feeds Tucker to Axel’s DDT! Cover, TWO! Axel keeps on Tucker with a half nelson and chinlock. Bryan says the problem with Heavy Machinery as that they joke around too much. Tucker endures and powers out with big hands. Axel knees then whips but Tucker manages to jump over Axel’s back! To then clobber him with a big lariat! Both men are down but fans rally as they crawl. Hot tags to Otis and Bo!
The Dozer rallies on the B-Team, then scoops and spins around with Bo! Otis slams BO down then clotheslines Axel out. Otis gives a grunt to Bryan, but turns around into a kick. But Otis powers up with it. Otis pops and locks and thrusts, to then scoop Bo for a BIG Fall Away Slam! Fans fire up with Otis as he puts Axel in, and sandwiches both men in the corner! Bo is down, and Otis grins as he pumps it up. Otis hits the Caterpillar elbow! Tag to Tucker, and Otis scoops BO, for the Compacter! Cover, Heavy Machinery wins!
Winners: Heavy Machinery, Tucker Knight pinning
And the contenders are rolling into Stomping Grounds! Bryan doesn’t think Tucker and Otis take this seriously, and therefore he doesn’t take them seriously. But will he see just how serious it is when he and Rowan actually face them in the ring?
But wait! Since the B-Team even so much as auditioned for the part of guest referee, Rollins is here to attack!! He SMACKS Axel, then jabs and SMACKS Bo! The Architect keeps that ultimatum from Raw going here on SmackDown as he just SMACKS away on the B-Team! He shows no mercy! And fans love it! Will Rollins continue to #BurnItDown all the way to Stomping Grounds?
Someone is arriving to SmackDown via limousine.
It’s Shane McMahon! The Best in the World looks to be all business after the attack on Raw. Sami & Kevin report Rollins’ attacks to Shane. Sami as the Wild Card is a guest, and there is no telling what Rollins will do next. Kevin agrees. Who attacks people form behind? Bad people, that’s who. Shane knows all about that. Something needs to be done about Rollins and even Kofi! Kofi is bad, too. Something needs to be done. Shane agrees. Tonight, Kevin & Sami VS Rollins & Kofi, in a very special 2 out of 3 Falls Tag. If you want to stop the bad people, take care of it yourself. Kevin and Sami aren’t really fans of that idea but they have no choice. Will the frenemies be able to do anything about the fired up Universal Champion and laser focused World Champion?
Aleister Black speaks.
“What does it take to change the essence of a man?” Aleister gets it. He understands why no one has knocked on his door, and why no one wants to pick a fight wit him. “Because I can hear your whispers as you passed by.” They know the Embodiment of the End was told he was “destined to fall from grace.” But this is not a “woe is me” story. No, this is a “woe, my opponents” story. Because someone will come knocking. Someone will pick a fight with him. And when they do, Aleister will change the essence of that man. Who will be daring enough to knock on Aleister’s door?
Shane McMahon heads out to the ring!
But he isn’t on SmackDown alone, he has The Drifter, Elias! Oh, and the Scottish Terminator, Drew McIntyre! The three walk down the ramp, all serious after the respective beatings they took from Raw last night. They take up mics and Shane lets Greg Hamilton take a week off on the introduction. And to last night, Roman Reigns and Shane had an “incident.” But Shane isn’t here about that. Shane is here to put the spotlight on the more deserving Drew McIntyre. This man will #KickAssandTakeNames at Stomping Grounds when he beats Roman once again. McIntyre tells Roman that he is praying for him. McIntyre did Roman a favor by not ending his career. But they’re better than Roman. SO when they were having that “private function” and Roman ambushed them, they weren’t prepared. That was a sucker punch to them.
But McIntyre is better than that. He wants The Big Dog at 100% and with no excuses. But before he can say more, here comes The Miz! The A-Lister uses the Wild Card to be here, and Shane is growing annoyed. Miz says this is important. They all need to watch this. The footage of Roman’s attack on Raw! The Revival, Drew McIntyre and Shane McMahon were all beat down in turn by Roman! Fans cheer but Shane is just annoyed. Is that funny to him? Sorry, that’s not funny. Well, not as funny as this. Slow-motion of Shane running from Roman. And slow-motion of the Superman Punch, too. Miz adds sound effects as the slow-motion Spear hits. Wow, Miz didn’t even know Shane could sweat so fast in slow-mo. But there’s more! Shane interrupts, and tells the production team they will lose their jobs over this,
Settle down, Junior, you’re the Boss’s Son. The kid that starts the game because Daddy’s the coach. And Miz hasn’t forgotten McIntyre. He’ll make sure to have a highlight reel of Roman knocking McIntyre out. Shane wonders where these daddy issues come from. It’s not Shane’s fault his dad is a billionaire and Miz’s is a potato. No, there is no shame, only guilt! Shane just sucks up all the air time to feed his ego and Miz is sick of it! W’ere all sick of it! Miz blames himself because it all started at World Cup. It was Miz’s first time being hurt and he let Shane “become Best int he World.” Miz created a monster and now we all have to suffer for it! Shane is Miz’s responsibility because Miz sent him on this ego trip, so Miz must be the one to end it!
Oof, such resentment. Miz didn’t get the job done, so Shane had to step in and do it himself. Shane earned being Best int he World because Miz wasn’t. But if Miz is all ready to fight, then have a fight. Miz will go up against McIntyre & Elias. Wow a handicap match? How original! Oh no, Miz, you can have whoever you want. So long as it happens in the next 10… 9… 8… but wait! From under the ring, it’s R-Truth!? The WWE 24/7 Champion is here, and Miz says his name. Well guess Truth is in by default! #AwesomeTruth reunited! Well okay. Then that match is happening next! But it will also be elimination! Get a ref and get this going, up next!
The Authors of Pain are now on SmackDown!
Akam and Rezar return, but they also encounter the IIconics. Billie Kay and Peyton Royce are impressed by the AoP’s physiques, but then they’re immediately upset seeing Paige and the Kabuki Warriors backstage. Maybe these two will try to plunder the gold! Because pirates, heh. How about an actual mage for the gold? Eeeeh no. They’d love to, but they’re busy with traveling. After all, they are the longest reigning and defending WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions. Well wonderful for you! But the funny thing is, everyone is going to the same places. So Paige asked and received confirmation that there is a match in WWE Tokyo! But-
No buts. You two listen to Paige’s Aussie accent. If these two, Kairi and Asuka, win, then they will get a WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship match! And then they’ll win that, to become the NEW Tag Team Champions! And that will be… IICONIC! Paige, Kairi and Asuka strike the pose, which upsets Billie & Peyton even more. But will they be most upset when they lose to Asuka and Kairi in Asuka’s and Kairi’s home country?
Tag Team Elimination Match: Drew McIntyre & Elias VS The Awesome Truth!
Reunited and it feels so good! Or at least, hopefully it will. Can Miz and Truth use this sudden reunion to get even with Shane’s boys? Or will not even the truth help Miz conquer the Best Henchmen in the World?
SmackDown returns with the bell, and Miz starts against Eilas. Fans echo “WHAT’S UP!?” with Truth as Miz and Elias tie up. Elias pushes but Miz gets free, to tie up again. Miz headlocks but Elias pries his way out to his own headlock. Miz powers out but Elias runs him over. Elias speeds things up but Miz hits a kitchen sink knee! Those bad ribs still bother Elias so Miz keeps on him. Tag to Truth, they double whip and double hip toss Elias down! Elias gasps for air but he gets a basement boot to Truth’s funky leg drop! Cover, TWO! Truth keeps on Elias with a headlock but Elias powers out. Truth slips out of the scoop to shove Elias, then ducks under with the splits to calf kick Elias down! Fans fire up with Truth as he hits the splits again!
Elias tags McIntyre and now Truth dreads the Scottish Terminator. Truth throws hands but McIntyre shoves him. Truth kicks back but misses the scissors kick. McIntyre shoves then SUPLEXES Truth overhead! McIntyre stands Truth up to CHOP him into the corner! He throws furious forearms but the ref counts. McIntyre argues with the ref and Elias gets cheap shots in! Fans boo and Miz protests but Elias gets away with it. McIntyre drags Truth up for a snap suplex, then covers, TWO! McIntyre chokes Truth on the ropes and Elias tags in. Elias boots Truth down, then taunts him as he chokes him on the ropes. Elias whips Truth but Truth dodges to throw hands! They bump shoulders and Truth keeps on Elias with haymakers!
Truth whips but Elias reverses to a kick. Elias shoves but Truth dumps Elias out! Elias hits the floor but McIntyre helps him back in. Both Elias and Truth crawl, but Shane trips Miz! McIntyre distracts the ref from seeing that, and Elias hits Truth with a big knee! Cover, Elias ELIMINATES Truth! And now Miz is all alone! But wait, the floodgates open and Truth is now a target! The rest of the SmackDown roster, and even Cruiserweights from 205 Life, rush to the ring! Shelton Benjamin skips Truth to grab the belt! He runs as THE Brian Kendrick, Jack Gallagher, and the Singh Brothers all give chase! That’s not how the belt works! The referee explains that and they all stop to listen. You have to PIN Truth first! Truth snatches the belt back and runs away! And the chase is on again!
Shane, Elias and McIntyre are at a loss for words, but Miz was able to recover in that time. Miz realizes the situation he is in while SmackDown goes picture in picture.
Mcintyre tags in, but he has to wait for Miz. Miz takse his time returning, and then circles with McIntyre. They tie up but Miz thows hansd. McIntyre punches back but gets thrown out. Miz misses the dropkick to get run over! McIntyre drags Miz up for a snap suplex to the floor! Miz writhes and Shane cheers his team on. McIntyre puts Miz against the apron to CHOP! Then he puts Miz in to mock Miz about tagging a partner. A partner Miz no longer has. McIntyre stmops Miz’s hand then fish hooks his face! The ref counts and McIntyre lets up. McINtyre stomps Miz’s face then tags Elias in. He holds Miz up for Elias to kick. Elias covers, TWO! Miz lives but Elias wraps on a vicious chinlock.
Miz endures as Elias grinds him into the mat. SmackDown returns to single picture as fans rally up. Miz fights out but Elias knees low. Elias whips Miz out of the ring, and the ref keeps him back. Shane gets a cheap shot in! Fans boo as McIntyre runs at Miz, only for Miz to send him into the timekeeper’s area! But Elias shoves Miz into the barriers! Elias gets Miz back in the ring then climbs up top. He leaps but into a BOOT! Elias’ ribs are hurt all over again! Shane checks on McIntyre while fans rally for Miz. Miz counter punches Elias then throws haymakers from all sides! Miz gives Elias It Kicks in the corner, then runs corner to corner for double knees! And again! And then the A-List Lariat! Elias flounders while Miz goes out. Miz slides back in to roll Elias up, TWO!
Miz kicks low for the DDT! Cover, TWO! Miz keeps his cool, and fans rally for him as he aims at Elias. More It Kicks for Elias! But Elias blocks the buzzsaw into an Electric Chair lift! But Miz fights out, rolls Elias up, TWO! GLASGOW KISS! Elias tags to McIntyre and McIntyre is seething. He dares Miz to stand, and Miz does, to get a CLAYMORE! Cover, McIntyre & Elias win!
Winners: Drew McIntyre & Elias, McIntyre pinning
A sweep on the Awesome Truth, mostly because Shane was helping. But a win is a win and McIntyre is ready to win again at Stomping Grounds. But Shane isn’t done with Miz, he puts Miz in a corner, to feed to another CLAYMORE! That still isn’t enough for them, though. Shane drags Miz up again, for a third Claymore! The Scottish Terminator says this will be what Roman has in store come Sunday, but will he be the one stomped out at Stomping Grounds?
Ember Moon is backstage.
She spots Carmella hurrying by. Has Carmella seen Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville? No, but has Ember seen R-Truth? No. Well Carmella hopes Ember tells Fire & Desire they both have unfinished business with them. Ember continues the search and finds Mandy & Sonya enjoying donuts. Mandy can’t believe they bought them all. Sonya can’t believe they’ve eaten so many yet still look so great. Ember confronts them on their attitudes. Sonya apologizes for the Switch. Ember says she’s had to deal with bullies and snobs like them her whole life. She will not- Oh calm down, loner. They were just trying to give her healthier ways to bide her time. But go ahead, rot your brain. Donut? Ember slaps the donuts away, and the fight is on!!
Ember and Sonya scrap but referees come up to separate them. Sonya and Ember are still fired up, but Mandy keeps Sonya back. Fire & Desire have plenty of fire, but so does the War Goddess! When will forces collide in the ring to settle the score?
SmackDown presents a new episode of Firefly Fun House!
Well hey, there! Bray Wyatt is just gardening. Our minds are a lot like gardens. All anyone needs is some water, some sun, and then your ideas will grow! But some ideas are full of worms. Those are no good! There will be people who lie to you. Like people saying the Earth is round. Or that dinosaurs are extinct! What do any of them know? But Brya knows what it’s like to be different. That’s why he built this place! So that we could all be together forever! Him, Mercy, Abby, the again repaired Ramblin’ Rabbit, Ham, Devil Vince. Join them where the fun never has to end. Yes, join us. JOIN US!! “People worship what they fear. Fear is power. Follow the leader.” And do the muscle man dance! REMIX!
The Fiend?! He’s back!? “FOLLOW THE LEADER!!” And let him in.
R-Truth looks to get out of SmackDown!
He finds Carmella waving down a car, but wait that’s a referee? The Carmella he found wasn’t Carmella at all! It’s DRAKE MAVERICK! “Hi, Truth!” But Truth elbows Maverick away. Maverick rolls Truth and uses the car!! Maverick WINS!!
Winner: Drake Maverick, by pinfall; NEW WWE 24/7 Champion
Finally, the searching and the planning pays off! Maverick takes the title and the referee’s car, to make a run for it! “I’m getting marriiiiied~!” Wait, Carmella’s getting married?! Why wasn’t he invited?! Will Truth have to do what it sounds like he has to? Will he have to crash a wedding to take back the title?!
2 Out of 3 Falls Tag: Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn VS Seth Rollins & Kofi Kingston!
The best frenemies aren’t liking this deja vu from Raw. They just went through a similar match against Kofi Kingston and the New Day, with Baron Corbin as their partner. But now they’ll do it again, as just the two of them, against the two top champions in all the WWE today! Will they lose here like they did on Raw? Or will Kevin and Sami get themselves in line for both titles with a win tonight?
SmackDown returns as Kofi makes his entrance once again. He still has plenty of pancakes to give out! Next is Rollins, and he still has that chair, beat up as it is. And of course, Kevin makes his entrance, followed by Sami. And they take a “Pancake Power” fan sign to tear it up. They tell Rollins to put his chair down, and Rollins does. The teams sort out, and Kofi starts with Sami. The bell rings and Kofi hits Sami with TROUBLE IN PARADISE! Rollins hits Kevin and Kofi covers, Kofi and Rollins get the first fall!
Rollins-Kofi – 1; Kevin-Sami: 0
Fast and furious but Kevin is upset that the bell didn’t even ring! But it did, so that’s a valid fall. Kevin and Sami regroup as we SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns with the second fall, and the bell rings again. Kevin kicks Rollins and clubs away! Kevin throws knees then shoves Rollins to the corner. He trash talks the fans before going back at Rollins with haymakers. Kevin whips but Rollins ducks to Slingblade Kevin down! Rollins drags Kevin up and wrenches to tag Kofi in. Kofi climbs and drops ax handles on Kevin’s arm. Kofi keeps Kevin from Sami with another wrench of the arm. Tag to Rollins and now Rollins drops ax handles. Rollins whips Kevin corner to corner but is put on the apron. Rollins punches Kevin away then scares Sami off. But Kevin catches Rollins int he springboard to throw him down! Kevin hits Kofi for good measure before he DDT’s Rollins! Cover, TWO!
Kevin tries again, TWO! Again, TWO! Kevin grows furious and questions the ref’s credentials. But backstage, Paul Heyman watches this match closely! Kevin tags Sami and Sami stomps Rollins. Sami throws angry haymakers and keeps Rollins from his corner. Sami drags Rollins up for a backbreaker! Cover, TWO! Again, TWO! Sami also argues with the ref, but he goes back to Rollins with haymakers. Rollins hits back so Sami clubs and snapmares Rollins into a chinlock. Sami keeps Rollins down but fans rally up. Rollins endures and fights his way up but Sami puts him in a corner. Sami throws body shots then haymakers. Fans boo but Kevin applauds. Sami puts Rollins up top and climbs up to join him. Rollins resists the superplex, then headbutts Sami down!
Sami tags Kevin and Kevin clobbers Rollins. Rollins hits back then hits a blockbuster! Both men are down and fans rally up! Hot tags to Sami and Kofi! Kofi springboards and clubs Sami down! Kofi rallies with chops and a dropkick! He keeps moving to leap and lariat Sami down! Fans fire up as Kofi hits the NEW~ DAY~ Boom Drop! Kofi aims from the corner and wants another Trouble in Paradise, but Sami boots him away. Sami runs but Kofi dodges and springboards for a crossbody! Cover, TWO!! Kofi keeps on Sami at the ropes but Sami holds on. Sami hits back and standing switches to a Blue Thunder Bomb! Cover, TWO!! Sami grows frustrated, but he goes to his corner to tag Kevin. Kevin drags Kofi up but gets a dropkick!
Kvin slumps out of the ring while Kofi goes to a corner. Sami runs in but is thrown back out! Hot tag to Rollins! Rollins DIVES onto Sami! Then he DIVES onto Kevin! Rollins puts Kevin in, springboards, flying clothesline! Fans fire up as Rollins stomps, “Burn It Down!” But Sami anchors a foot, so Kofi LEAPS to clothesline Sami down! Kevin rolls Rollins, TWO! SUPERKICK! Kevin whips, Pop-up but Rollins slips out, to mule kick! Rollins wants a Superkick but Kevin blocks that to roll Rollins,but Rollins rolls through! SUPERKICK! Rollins has Kevin, but Kevin back drops. Rollins lands on his feet to PELE! And then the CURB STOMP! Cover, Rollins & Kofi win!!
Winners: Seth Rollins & Kofi Kingston, Rollins by pinfall
That’s another 2-0 sweep for Kofi’s team over Kevin and Sami! Both champions are rolling into Stomping Grounds, but Heyman is still watching eagerly. Is this only ensuring a Beast in the Bank cash-in on Sunday? And will it still be on Rollins?
What a great SmackDown to lead into Stomping Grounds! At least, it sure felt better than Raw’s go-home did. The opening promos of Ziggler and The New Day were actually pretty great, and I was surprised Woods VS Ziggler was the opener. This was a great bit to tie things together, as Kevin and Sami attack New Day but then have to face the consequences, in a sense. A real shame for Kevin and Sami, but that 2 out of 3 Falls was still a lot of fun. Having Heyman watching backstage, I wonder if this is the way to switch targets from Rollins to Kofi. It would be quite a clever thing to do, to make a fool of Rollins over all his chair smashing. Then Rollins’ story becomes having to deal with all those he beat down over this Stomping Grounds stuff.
While I was critical on the SmackDown Women’s Championship overshadowing the Women’s Tag titles on Raw, the stuff we got tonight was great. The Moment of Bliss was great, and the use of the Heel Face dynamics is unique, with Bayley being Face, Alexa being Heel but Nikki thinking it’s the other way around. I could see Nikki costing Alexa somehow and that turns Alexa against her. Meanwhile, we finally get Kabuki Warriors back! I’d love to see WWE Tokyo on the Network, and I really hope the WWE Women’s Tag titles are on the line at Extreme Rules in a Women’s No DQ tag. Meanwhile, good to see some development of Fire & Desire VS Ember and hopefully Carmella. That should be good action, and Fire & Desire VS Kabuki Warriors as champions would be a great story for Summerslam.
They didn’t really make that big of a deal of Planet’s Tag Team Champions VS Heavy Machinery for the titles at Stomping Ground, but at least Heavy Machinery got to have some fun squashing B-Team. Pretty sure Bryan & Rowan retain, though. I still want to see a huge tag match with all the teams that brawled on Raw. It’d be great if the Planet’s Tag Team Champions became the top team on both brands in something like a Ladder Match. Miz tearing into Shane was a great voicing of the fans’ complaints, and it still works in story. Hopefully that’s not why we were getting so much Shane, though… Well that aside, Awesome Truth reuniting was fun, but obviously Shane’s boys stand tall to stay strong going into Stomping Grounds. I still think Shane screws Roman somehow.
And what really puts SmackDown over the night was that surprise with the 24/7 Championship! I did not see that coming, just like Truth didn’t. And it is so great that it was Maverick who pulled off the dethroning! With how much Maverick keeps plugging his own wedding, this has to mean Truth is going to “crash” it and take the title back to ruin Maverick’s special day. I really hope he does it in disguise as the officiator of the wedding. What better way to win is “I now pronounce you the former WWE 24/7 European Champion!”
My Score: 8.5/10
(NOAH) WEEKLY NEWSLETTER VOL.43 ~ 14TH JULY 2019
Global Junior Tag League has started! Hisame let’s us know what’s going on in Pro Wrestling NOAH!
Global Junior Tag League has started! Hisame let’s us know what’s going on in Pro Wrestling NOAH!
CURRENT TOUR RECAP
After a long break in which it was thought that due to the silence coming from the roster, they had all gone on a short summer break, NOAH returned on the 12th July to hold a show in Tokorozawa.
In Global Junior Tag League, YO-HEY defeated Junta Miyawaki (although he did praise him afterwards in a rambling promo), and Chris Ridgeway defeated fellow STINGER, Kotaro Suzuki by making him tap.
Minoru Tanaka vs Daisuke Harada for Global Junior League, was the main event of the evening, and what a match it was. They pulled everything out of every drawer they had, Tanaka worked on Harada’s knee, while Harada worked on the neck. The match went to a thirty minute draw, and both spoke afterwards about it. Minoru Tanaka says that he won today, and he will win the league. He also mentioned that he wants to see more junior matches main event shows.
Daisuke Harada said that he would not let “that stranger” win, and he would challenge for the belt again, whether the fans liked it or not.
Takashi Sugiura and Hajime Ohara took on Masao Inoue and Kinya Okada, and there was the usual amusing Inoue\Sugiura interplay. Earlier in the evening, joining in with Marufuji not remembering Kenoh’s name, and vice versa, Takashi Sugiura joined in, but changed it so that he couldn’t remember Masao Inoue’s name. Inoue is a sufferer of gout, and naturally Sugiura targeted his foot by keeping him in the ankle lock after Kinya Okada had tapped, and then when his arms were lifted in victory, he continued stamping on Inoue’s foot.
Speaking of Marufuji and Kenoh, Kenoh (when the team of Marufuji, Yoshinari Ogawa, Hiroshi Yamato and Keisuke Ishii took on Kongoh), timed it just right when Marufuji bounced into the ring, landed and turned so that he was there waiting for him, and they both got in each others face. Inamura was chopped to ribbons.
As Go Shiozaki was still absent (he will return to the ring on the 15th), Katsuhiko Nakajima came to the ring carrying both of the tag belts. As he said at the match signing which took place on the 13th June, he was preparing more for the GHC Heavyweight than the singles, and so he started the match off against Kaito Kiyomiya. However, it wasn’t Nakajima who took the win, but Kaito Kiyomiya with the Tiger Suplex on Hi69.
Tokorozawa City Gymnasium, Sub Arena (12th July 2019)
Post match promos – 12th July 2019
Current Global Junior League Scores (as of July 14th 2019)
Minoru Tanaka 5
Daisuke Harada 3
Yoshinari Ogawa 2
Junta Miyawaki 0
Chris Ridgeway 4
Hajime Ohara 2
Hitoshi Kumano 2
Kotaro Suzuki 0
In keeping in the theme of using pets on merchandise (a silhouette of one of Hitoshi Kumano’s little French Bulldog appeared on the back of one of his t-shirts, and Akitoshi Saito had a cat t-shirt) continued when NOAH put the head of Takashi Sugiura’s beloved Shiba Inu on a t-shirt, complete with dog tags which read “company dog”. Naturally, this was a shot at Kongoh (in specific Kenoh, as he is the only one who speaks), who are currently feuding with The Sugiura Army, and the use of the phrase “Company dog” (i.e. someone who does his masters bidding unquestionably, comes goes, fetches, wags tail etc).
The t-shirt will be released on the 15th July at Korakuen Hall, with mail order to follow (a white version is also available).
NAOMICHI MARUFUJI’S COMIC STRIP
Naomichi Marufuji has started illustrating a comic for “Weekly Pro”. The comic is a condensed version of his autobiography, “Heir To The Ark”, and starts off with his childhood growing up in Saitama with three older brothers, and wrestling with them which inspired his love of the sport. The comic starts off with two of his brothers arguing about who they are going to be, then they tell little Marufuji that they feel sorry for him, as being the youngest and the smallest, he is going to get it from them (which he did in reality), and Marufuji fighting back by saying that Tiger Mask (Mitsuharu Misawa) is strong.
You can find an ongoing translation on my blog.
The main event for TAKAYAMANIA EMPIRE 2 will be Hideki Suzuki and Minoru Suzuki vs Naomichi Marufuji and Masato Tanaka. Event will be held on Monday, August 26 2019 at Korakuen Hall.
Broadcast most likely will be through ABEMA (a Japanese PPV subscription channel, only available to those in Japan).
- GHC Heavyweight Champion: Kaito Kiyomiya
- GHC Junior Champion: Minoru Tanaka
- GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: AXIZ (Go Shiozaki & Katsuhiko Nakajima)
- GHC Junior Tag Champions: Stinger (Kotaro Suzuki & Yoshinari Ogawa)
~ HAYATA’S garden has produced Daikon. YO-HEY celebrated by putting it in his mouth.
~ NOAH held a joint fan birthday party for Kaito Kiyomiya and Junta Miyawaki. Miyawaki turned 22 in June, with Kiyomiya turning 23 this month.
~ Naomichi Marufuji says he has a new gown for Korakuen Hall on the 15th June
~ YO-HEY made a summer vacation to see his family in rural Yabu. One of his young nieces asked him if he was married to HAYATA.
NOAH’s big Kawasaki Kultz event (and the GHC Heavyweight title, plus the final night of Global Junior League 2019) will air on the 2nd August on G+ at 12.30am JST
NOAH will be broadcast live on Sunday 4th August at 11.30am JST on G+
GIF OF THE WEEK
GHC Heavyweight tag & single championship signing
Picture credit: Noah GHC, PKDK, YO-HEY
GIF credit: Noah GHC
Mitchell’s Evolve 10th Anniversary Special Results & Report! (7/13/19)
10 Years and Counting!
Evolve comes to the WWE Network!
A major milestone of 10 years is worth celebrating in a big way! And so the WWE brings Evolve’s anniversary special to the Network, and puts together sensational crossovers such as Adam Cole VS Akira Tozawa for the NXT Championship!
- Josh Briggs VS Anthony Green w/ Brandi Lauren; Briggs wins.
- Four Way Freestyle: Sean Maluta VS Curt Stallion VS Stephen Wolf VS Harlem Bravado; Wolf wins.
- Arturo Ruas VS Anthony Henry; Ruas wins.
- No Disqualifications: Brandi Lauren VS Shotzi Blackheart; Lauren wins.
- Colby Corino w/ Sean Maluta VS Babatunde; Babatunde wins.
- Evolve Tag Team Championships: The Unwanted VS AR Fox & Leon Ruff w/ Ayla Fox; Fox & Ruff win and become the new Evolve Tag Team Champions.
- Matt Riddle VS Drew Gulak; Riddle wins.
- Evolve and WWN Championship Unification: Austin Theory VS JD Drake; wins and is the undisputed Evolve and WWN Champion.
- NXT Championship: Adam Cole VS Akira Tozawa; Cole wins and retains the NXT Championship.
PLAY BY PLAY
Many WWE Superstars owe a lot to Evolve Wrestling.
For 10 years, Evolve has been a place for wrestlers to hone their craft and find themselves. In the days before NXT, Cesaro, Daniel Bryan, Ricochet, Drew McIntyre and many others came through Evolve. It was named for the need to evolve and adapt to the changing landscape of pro-wrestling, and that is what it represents to this day. And so, to give back, WWE brings Evolve LIVE from the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia!
Lenny Leonard shows us the future here tonight as many Evolve stars are ready to fight. They’re ready to evolve and achieve dreams! But as the wrestlers slowly exit the ring, there’s a low blow with the ropes! The cheap shot artist, Harlem Bravado, is told to get out while his victim, Stephen Wolf, is checked on. But the last one in the ring is Josh Briggs, the Professional Disliker of People. He takes the mic to say that “Tonight is about opportunity!” Tonight, he takes HIS opportunity! Briggs demands that Anthony Greene get back in the ring to face him now! Greene’s manager says for Greene to go, so he gets in the ring, and tears off the pants! The referee keeps the peace while we get a proper introduction.
Josh Briggs VS Anthony Green w/ Brandi Lauren!
Chances are, Briggs does not like #RetroAG, but maybe he just has a thing against fanny packs. Brandi helps AG with his jacket and pack and we begin this opening match!
Briggs and AG tie up as fans duel. Briggs just tosses AG to a corner! Then he tosses him out of the corner across the way! Briggs runs corner to corner but misses, but he puts AG on the apron. AG swings but Briggs blocks to slingshot AG into a backbreaker! Fans cheer as Briggs sneers at AG. Briggs drags AG to whip and swing but AG ducks to huricanrana! AG clutches his back as he walks into another backbreaker, then sidewalk slam and splash! Cover, TWO! Briggs grins as he waits for AG to stand. AG sees the choke slam hand and bails out! But Briggs chases after, only for AG to slip back in. AG runs into a boot, but Brandi anchors Briggs’ feet! Briggs shakes her off but AG kicks him at the ropes.
AG has a leg and DDT’s it into the mat! Then AG hops to the apron, only to get grabbed around the throat! AG kicks out the bad leg then boots Briggs down! AG builds speed to DIVE, into Briggs’ hands! For an apron choke slam! Philly is fired up for Briggs, who glares at Brandi as she checks on AG. Fans duel as Briggs gets back on the apron. Briggs drags AG up but AG blocks the kick to kick the leg out, then SUPERKICKS Briggs down! Briggs slowly stands up, to get AG’s springboard cutter to the apron! Brandi cheers AG on as AG clubs away on Briggs. AG drags Briggs up for a swift right hand! Briggs staggers around the corner but AG bumps him off the apron. AG puts Briggs in then climbs up top, to springboard twisting crossbody! Cover, TWO! Fans rally for Briggs as AG catches his breath.
AG stalks Briggs to a corner to throw big hands and a CHOP! Briggs’ bad shoulder comes into play but he holds onto the ropes. Briggs whips AG but AG elbows back and snapmares Briggs into buckles! AG stomps a mudhole into Briggs’ legs! The ref backs AG off but Brandi gets a cheap shot in! AG comes back and drags Briggs to a cover, TWO! AG smirks as he looms over Briggs. Fans build to a rally and Briggs pushes AG down. Briggs runs but into a jawbreaker and neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Brandi grows frustrated for AG, but fans say “Retro Sucks!” AG ignores them to drag Briggs up. He suplexes but it’s Briggs with the X-Plex! Briggs catches his breath while AG slowly stands.
AG runs in but into an elbow. Briggs dodges AG and sends him out, then is ready when he returns. Briggs breaks through the lariat for a leaping lariat of his own! AG is in a corner and Briggs runs in for a big back elbow. Briggs goes side to side to get a SUPERKICK from AG! Brandi taunts Briggs but Briggs revives to boot wash AG over and over! Briggs brings AG out, whips, backbreaker to butterfly backbreaker! Cover, TWO!! AG survives and Brandi is relieved. Brandi talks smack to Briggs but Briggs just gets angry. Briggs drags AG up and back suplexes, but AG fights out. AG trips Briggs to go for the leg, but Briggs throws him off. AG cartwheels through to forearm Briggs in the corner! Then AG runs, but into a BOOT!
Briggs scoops AG and hits a crucifix Michinoku driver! Cover, TWO!? Briggs is shocked that AG still lives! AG crawls to ropes and Brandi coaches him up but Briggs whips. AG kicks Briggs but it barely does a thing! Briggs blocks another kick but takes the enziguri! He’s still up! Briggs fakes AG out but AG enziguris again! Back suplex and hammerlock to chickenwing DRIVER! Cover, TWO, into a Half Crab! AG has the bad leg but Briggs endures to get the ropebreak! AG lets go reluctantly, but he stomps the bad leg. Brandi talks more smack while AG climbs up top. AG leaps for a 450 but rolls through as Briggs dodges! Briggs puts AG in a corner, blocks a kick but takes another enziguri. School boy into buckles! AG grins as he climbs up again. But Briggs revives to rock him with a right!
Briggs climbs up and brings AG around like a backpack. But Brandi anchors them down! The referee EJECTS Brandi! But in the meantime, AG gets on Briggs’ shoulders for a SUPER VICTORY ROLL! Cover, TWO!? Now AG is shocked, but he SUPERKICKS Briggs, then SUPERKICKS again! Briggs blocks the third into the pump-handle GTS, the Go To HELL! Then the choke grip, but AG slips out! AG fakes Briggs out, grabs a leg, but Briggs fights free. Briggs grabs AG, AG breaks free and throws a big haymaker! But Briggs grabs with the other hand, so AG punches with his other hand! Briggs switches back to the right hand, but so does AG! Briggs still gets AG with the choke slam POWERBOMB! High stack cover, Briggs wins!!
Winner: Josh Briggs, by pinfall
And the Professional Disliker takes the first win on this anniversary card! Surely he has to like that. Will this lead Briggs towards a title in the near future?
Evolve looks back on The Unwanted’s history.
As of Evolve episode 123, The Unwanted’s Eddie Kingston and Joe Gacy became the NEW Evolve Tag Team Champions after dethroning NXT’s Street Profits. And even after giving up Isaiah “Swerve” Scott, they reloaded with Sean Maluta. However, they know now from Evolve 131, their new contenders are AR Fox and Leon Ruff. In the present, Eddie Kingston warns Fox and Ruff that he, the Unwanted King, and the Unwanted Maniac, Gacy, will take all those years, all those miles, all those hot dogs and handshakes, they’re not going to let anyone beat them! “Understand something: you may not know us, but you can ask those ‘superstars’ about me.” The world will finally see what the Unwanted can do, but will they retain their titles under these brighter lights?
Four Way Freestyle: Sean Maluta VS Curt Stallion VS Stephen Wolf VS Harlem Bravado!
Speaking of the Unwanted, the Samoan Dragon and their newest member is here to grab his own opportunity with his own hands. But so are the Lone Star, the Leader of the Pack, and the Globetrotter! Who makes the biggest impact on this 10th anniversary special?
Wolf wants at Harlem after that cheap shot to start the show, but the ref keeps the peace again. Each man has a corner and the bell rings. Wolf goes right at Harlem and throws hands! Maluta has Stallion to deal with and Stallion throws big rights and CHOPS! Wolf brings Harlem out while Maluta reverses a whip to back kick. Maluta goes to bomb but Stallion back drops. Maluta sunset flips but Stallion rolls through to stomp! Harlem stomps Wolf into barriers while Stallion covers, TWO! Stallion throws more heavy hands on Maluta then whips. Harlem returns just as Maluta reverses. Harlem grabs Stallion and holds him there for Maluta. Maluta runs in but Stallion gets clear, and Maluta’s forearm hits Harlem!
Stallion waistlocks but Maluta switches. Stallion bucks Maluta off but he runs into a kick. Maluta backslides but Stallion rolls through, to get a buzzsaw! And twisting suplex! But Wolf returns to dropkick Maluta! Wolf runs corner to corner but Maluta dodges to whip Wolf away. Maluta misses in the corner now, and Wolf kicks him away. Wolf springboards to crossbody Maluta down! Wolf howls but Harlem clubs him down! Harlem soaks up the heat but gets CHOPS from Stallion! Harlem ducks the third chop to roundhouse Stallion down! Fans boo but Harlem just soaks up the heat. Wolf gets up and baits Harlem in to dump him out. Wolf builds speed to FLY! Direct hit wipes Harlem out and the pack howls with Wolf. But Maluta climbs to LEAP onto him and Harlem! But Stallion builds speed to FLY onto all three!
Fans fire up behind the Lone Star as he gets Maluta back in. Stallion waistlocks, deadlifts and German Suplexes! Bridge cover, TWO! Stallion keeps his cool as he drags Maluta up again. Maluta throat chops Stallion! Maluta CHOPS Stallion back then runs, but Harlem dumps him out! Harlem waves bye before giving Stallion CHOPS of his own. Then he fakes a chop to give a jab. Harlem sees Wolf jump in and gets under to scoop Wolf to a dragon sleeper. Stallion runs in, but gets caught by Harlem, for Harlem to DDT and complete shot them both! Harlem covers Wolf, TWO! Fans say “You Still Suck!” to Harlem, and then Wolf fights back. Harlem still fits Wolf for a big back suplex and cover, TWO!
Harlem keeps on Wolf with a stomp in the corner. He drags Wolf up to CHOP, then whip corner to corner. Wolf reverses and runs in but gets an elbow. Harlem hops up but Maluta forearms him down onto ropes! Stallion returns but gets a SUPERKICK! SUPERKICK for Harlem! Wolf springboards into a SUPERKICK! Fans fire up for the Savage as he covers Wolf, TWO! Maluta keeps his cool as he BOOTS Stallion down. Maluta drags Wolf up but gets a jawbreaker! Wolf runs, Maluta dodges, and they both crossbody! Both men are down gasping for air, but Wolf is up first .Fans rally and Maluta follows. Harlem runs in but gets Wolf’s enziguri. Stallion has Maluta for a Snap German! Stallion and Wolf stare down, but BOOT the others!
Wolf and Stallion sweep the legs, and then corner to corner, dropkick and swinging bronco buster! Stallion fires up, but fakes Harlem out to Sole Food! Wolf monkey flips Maluta down and a double cover, TWO!! Now Wolf and Stallion stare down. Philly duels between them, so they start brawling! Wolf kicks but Stallion CHOPS away! Stallion whips but Wolf reverses and rolling elbows! Wolf runs but into Harlem’s BOOT! Stallion HEADBUTTS Harlem, but Maluta enziguris Stallion! Maluta rips off the wrist tape and whips Wolf. Wolf tiger feints to a lariat! All four men are down and the fans are loving it! Wolf is up first as the fans rally. Wolf drags Maluta up but Maluta blocks the suplex. Harlem throws Maluta out and ducks Wolf’s kick to shove and pop-up to a Death Valley Driver!
Harlem is fired up but fans boo as he drags Satallion up. Double underhooks but Stallion breaks out, jackknife to Alabama, Air Raid Crash! But Maluta hits a FLYING code breaker on Stallion! Stallion gets out of the ring so Maluta goes at Wolf. Wolf ducks the kick and hits a Blue Thunder Bomb! Maluta is in the drop zone and Wolf heads up top. Harlem trips Wolf up! Fans boo but Maluta decks Harlem. Maluta climbs up to join Wolf, but Stallion is back! SUPER INVERTED SPANISH FLY! Harlem has Stallion, butterfly driver! Shooting Star from Wolf to Harlem! Wolf wins!!
Winner: Stephen Wolf, by pinfall
The Leader of the Pack gets the better of all three opponents! And now he’s howling all the way to the back! Will the Globetrotter be back for payback?
Evolve hears from Anthony Henry.
A wrestling veteran of over 16 years, the Patron Saint of Wrestling promises to show the world high impact strikes, slick submissions, and a little bit of everything. His MMA and amateur wrestling makes him a violent hybrid, but it will always be a fight.
Arturo Ruas VS Anthony Henry!
The Brazilian Tiger lives by the code of #TechniqueisEverything and believes his own technique is better than everyone’s. However, we just heard from the Patron Saint of Wrestling, and we know now that Ruas is in for a fight! Who fights harder to prove themselves to the world?
The bell rings and the strikes are swinging! Each man gets clear and now they both know they’re serious. Ruas throws hands and then tackles Henry to the mat. Ruas has the armbar but Henry gets the ropebreak. Henry is let go and Ruas eggs him on in Portueguese. Fans rally as Henry fires off on Ruas! Henry tackles Ruas now and throws his own hands! Henry wants the armbar but Ruas rolls out to go for his own! Ruas clubs and hammers but Henry, bloody nose and all, stands up and slips out. Henry gets through the leg guard to rain down hands. Ruas pushes Henry away and gets him down with a body scissor catch! Ruas has the arm but Henry stands again to go for Ruas’ arm! Henry pulls but Ruas has the monkey grip.
Henry clubs away on Ruas but Ruas stands up and deadlifts! Ruas slams Henry with a powerbomb! But Ruas rains down hands before the cover, TWO!! Henry just escapes but Ruas is laser focused. Ruas kicks Henry in the back, then taunts him more. Ruas toys with Henry before throwing hands in the corner. The ref backs Ruas off and checks on Henry. Henry refuses to back down so Ruas chinlocks him in the ropes. Henry eggs Ruas on so Ruas knees him back down. Ruas talks trash as Henry flops down. Ruas brings Henry up but Henry fires off palm strikes! Henry kicks but Ruas ducks to waistlock. Henry wheelbarrows through to double stomp Ruas down! Ruas and Henry are both reeling from respective damage, but fans fire up for Henry as he hits a windmill kick!
Henry fires himself up as he gives Ruas muay thai knees. Ruas whips Henry into a corner hard, but Henry boots and climbs at the same time! Missile dropkick! Fans are fired up as Henry kips up! Henry runs corner to corner for a big forearm smash, then whips Ruas into a hammerlock back suplex! Henry Northern Lights and floats over to the armbar! Ruas resists but Henry pries that grip apart!! Ruas slips around to a cover, ONE and Ruas bails out. Henry goes to the apron and leaps with a knee! Ruas gets wrecked into railing and Philly fires up again! Henry gets Ruas in and climbs, double stomps but he has to roll through. Ruas dodges again then blocks to counter punch away. Ruas knees, cartwheels and shotgun dropkicks! Cover, TWO!! Henry survives and Ruas is furious.
Ruas drags Henry up for another rain of rights. Ruas soaks up the heat as he drags Henry back up. Cravat scoop but Henry slips into a sleeper with body scissors! Ruas bumps Henry on buckles but Henry is back on! Ruas tries again, but Henry won’t let him be! Henry has Ruas fading, then sweeps the legs! Ruas ducks the Penalty Kick to give an Eddie Gordo Kick! German Suplex and bridge, TWO!! Henry survives again and Ruas is furious. Fans rally up for Henry as Ruas stalks him to the ropes. Ruas throws hands from all sides. Henry boots back but Ruas smears him into ropes. Ruas kicks the legs out but Henry blocks the knee! Henry kicks that leg out to buzzsaw Ruas down! Ruas is down and Henry fires the fans up again.
Henry climbs but Ruas intercepts with big haymakers. Ruas climbs up to join Henry and clubs away on the back. Henry hits back and hits dumdum stomps! Then a tornado DDT! Henry keeps moving as Ruas is down. Henry’s back up top, BIG double stomps! Cover, TWO!? But Henry is right on the Ankle Lock! Ruas endures as Henry twists and wrenches! Ruas rolls and gets Henry down to go at the leg. Both men have a leg lock, but realize this won’t do it. So they start throwing SLAPPING palm strikes! Ruas backs off and fans rally up again. Ruas and Henry throw hands fast and furious and the fans are loving it! Henry gets the edge, but runs into the capoeria heel kick!! Cover, Ruas wins!!
Winner: Arturo Ruas, by pinfall
The Tiger may have even knocked Henry out with that heel kick. Ruas gets a big win in a truly big fight. Will Ruas find himself fighting for a title in the near future? And is there still plenty of fight left in Henry?
No Disqualifications: Brandi Lauren VS Shotzi Blackheart!
To say there is history between the Retro manager and SHINE Wrestling’s Nova Champion would be an understatement. They tried settling things at Evolve 128, but the Pizza Cat would not let Brandi off so easily, and a brawl broke out afterward. Referees would not #LetThemFight back then, but now they have no choice! Will things finally be settled when the gloves are off and the rules are out of the way?
The bell rings and fans cheer for “Pizza Cat! Pizza Cat!” Shotzi and Brandi approach, but someone attacks Shotzi for Brandi! Natalia Markova is on Brandi’s side!? Brandi says this is a No DQ, after all. So the ruthless Russian does all the dirty work with her roundhouse, boot and running X-Factor! Then a running heel kick in the corner! But Shotzi fights back! Shotzi chops away and boots Natalia, and Brandi bails out! Shotzi springboard enziguris Natalia to the corner! Then hits a corner 619! Fans fire up with Shotzi and climbs up, for a big missile dropkick! Natalia is taken care of, and now Shotzi builds speed to DIVE onto Brandi! Direct hit but not without its consequences as Shotzi now has a bloody nose.
Shotzi drags Brandi up to bump off the apron, then walks around the way to look under the ring. She brings out chairs, but as always, “We Want Tables!” For now, Shotzi sticks to the chairs as she sets them up by the ramp. Brandi grabs one but Shotzi mule kicks her down! Shotzi puts Brandi back in the ring, but Brandi wrecks Shotzi with a dropkick into those chairs she set up! Fans are reminded of “E C DUB! E C DUB!” as Brandi brings Shotzi over to whip right into the apron. Brandi grabs those chairs from earlier and reorganizes them. She drags Shotzi over and suplexes, but Shotzi blocks. Shotzi fights back and punches Brandi, but Brandi whips Shotzi into the post! If that nose wasn’t bleeding before, it is now.
Brandi grabs another chair and brings Shotzi over. “I’m giving you exactly what you wanted.” But Shotzi fires off palm strikes and a SUPERKICK! To then run in for a senton onto the chair!! Both women are down but somehow okay to continue. Shotzi drags Brandi onto the apron, but Brandi shoves her into another post! Then grabs her for an apron powerbomb! Fans are reminded of “Kevin Owens!” now as Brandi covers, TWO! Shotzi survives and Brandi grows frustrated. Brandi drags Shotzi up and to a corner to bump off buckles. Brandi whips Shotzi corner to corner but Shotzi goes up and over to roundhouse Brandi! Shotzi runs and dodges Brandi to mule kick then front kick. Rolling elbow to enziguri! Brandi flops into a corner and fans fire up with Shotzi.
Shotzi runs corner to corner for another senton! Brandi slips out to the apron but Shotzi follows. Shotzi grabs Brandi, but Brandi denies Sliced Bread. Brandi kicks Shotzi into this post, then gets to the floor. Brandi brings Shotzi around back to those chairs, but Shotzi bumps her off the apron. Shotz bounces Brandi off those chairs, and then goes under the ring again. She brings out even more chairs, and starts stacking them on the other chairs! Shotzi brings Brandi around, lifts, and sits Brandi on the very top. Fans ask Shotzi, “Please Don’t Die!” but Shotzi fires herself and howls to the moon. Shotzi builds speed but Anthony Greene returns! Shotzi boots him down, then builds speed again, to DIVE! She only gets chairs!! AG moved Brandi out of the way and Shotzi crashes and burns!
Fans lose their minds over the carnage! AG drags Shotzi from the wreckage and puts her in the ring. Brandi covers, TWO!?! But how?! No one can believe it but the fans are loving it! AG hurries to find anything to give to Brandi while fans rally up for Shotzi. AG finds a kendo stick and hands it to Brandi! But now AG has to fight off Curt Stallion! Brandi SMACKS away on Shotzi while the Lone Star makes sure AG can’t do anything more. Shotzi is down, just taking those kendo stick strikes! Cover, Brandi wins!
Winner: Brandi Lauren, by pinfall
There should be an asterisk here that it was almost a handicap match. Shotzi has the fans on her side, so Brandi’s win rings hollow. Will this settle anything between Brandi and Shotzi?
Colby Corino w/ Sean Maluta VS Babatunde!
The Unwanted Son has the Unwanted Savage by his side as he looks to make his own impact on tonight’s anniversary show. But how well will he do against a truly massive opponent?
The bell rings and Colby talks trash to big bad Baba. Colby chops but they don’t do a thing! Fans know Colby messed up, and Babatunde crushes Colby’s hand. Colby punches with the other hand, but Babatunde just LAUNCHES Colby! Colby bails out and regroups with Maluta, but Babatunde hurries out to fetch Colby. Babatunde tells Maluta to back off, and Colby runs at him! But he’s still not big enough! Babatunde grabs Colby, tosses him up onto the apron, and CHOPS him against the ropes! Colby feels his soul leave his body, then Babatunde tosses Colby into the ring. The ref keeps Maluta back, but Colby gets Babatunde with a shotgun knee! The giant is finally rocked, and then Maluta gets a cheap shot SUPERKICK in!
Babatunde staggers into the ring and Colby fires off forearms. Babatunde pushes Colby away, but Colby quickly goes to the corner. Colby springboards and swantons onto Babatunde’s back! Fans duel as Colby covers, TWO and with force! Colby gets mad now as he climbs back up. Colby leaps but into Babatunde’s hand! Babatunde lifts Colby with both hands, to buckle bomb! Then Babatunde runs in for a big corner splash! Babatunde SWATS Colby with one hand, then runs to drop a HUGE elbow! Colby gasps for air but Babatunde isn’t done, HUGE splash! Cover, Babatunde wins!
Winner: Babatunde, by pinfall
The Unwanted still want to fight the big man, so out comes the King and the Maniac. They check on Colby, but he’s still breathing. Eddie Kingston gives a role call, reminding everyone they are the Evolve Tag Team Champions. Maluta takes Colby to the back while Kingston mocks “Bababooey.” “People like you make us sick.” Babatunde gets handed opportunities just because he played football and is 7-foot-whatever. But the Unwanted traveled the road and did things the “right” way. The Performance Center handed Babatunde everything, but the Unwanted will take the “big goofy bastard” out to take his spot.
But wait, here comes their challengers! AR Fox and Leon Fox, along with Ayla Fox and The Skulk, won’t let The Unwanted do what they want. They DIVE onto the Unwanted, wrecking them to the barriers! Babatunde takes his leave so Fox and Ruff can handle their business right here and now!
Evolve Tag Team Championships: The Unwanted VS AR Fox & Leon Ruff w/ Ayla Fox!
No need for introductions or raising the belts here, the fight continues where it left off! Fox and Ruff build speed again, but The Unwanted get clear. So they just change direction and DOUBLE DIVE anyway! Kingston and Gacy are taken out and Philly fires up with the challengers. Fox and Ruff get back in the ring, but Kingston and Gacy drag them out for big haymakers. The Unwanted regroup, and Gacy DIVES, but misses Fox to only get Kingston! Ruff runs over to climb up and FLY onto The Unwanted! Ruff holds onto the Unwanted, and Fox springboards for an IMPLODING CANNONBALL! It proves a little double-edged as Fox clips the barriers, but he’s up on his feet! Philly is thunderous as Fox and Ruff put Gacy in.
Ruff CHOPS Gacy, then goes acrobatic and even shows off a little for the huricanrana! SUPERKICK and buzzsaw from Fox, then Ruff adds an Eddie Gordo kick before Fox hits a cutter! Ruff German Suplexes and bridges to a cover, with Fox on top! But Kingston breaks it up! Kingston throws hands on Fox and Ruff, but they duck his double clotheslines to double enziguri! Ruff brings Kingston up as Fox goes to a corner. But Kingston shoves Ruff forward to get Fox’s cutter! Gacy handsprings to give Fox a cutter!! Then the Unwanted combine, discus lariat to saido suplex! Ruff is all alone as the Unwanted hit a corner train, and double forearms! Cover, TWO! Ruff lives and Kingston is seething.
Fans rally for Ruff as the Unwanted coordinate again. Scoop slam from Kingston, then from Gacy. Kingston gets up top and Gacy suplexes Ruff up there for him. SUPER POWERSLAM! Cover, TWO!! Fox returns but gets the Russian Leg Sweep STO combo! Kingston has Gacy go at Ruff but Ruff fights back! Ruff throws hands and chops but the Unwanted mug him in the corner, and CHOP away! Kingston even headbutts Ruff before he hoists Ruff up top. Kingston climbs up to join Ruff, and SUPERPLEXES Ruff into Gacy’s powerbomb! Cover, TWO!! Ruff shocks the Unwanted with his resilience! Ayla and the rest of the Skulk rally for Ruff, as do the fans. The Unwanted toy with Ruff and then bring him to a corner. Gacy hops up top and Kingston suplexes, but Fox saves Ruff. Kingston turns around into Fox’s SUPERKICK while Ruff enziguris Gacy!
Ruff climbs, but Kingston body checks Fox! Gacy and Ruff brawl, and then Ruff kicks Kingston, for a backflip DDT! Fox hits the springboard Spanish Fly on Gacy! Double covers, TWO!! They were so close but still so far from winning! But Philly still believes in Fox and Ruff as they regroup. Fox drags Kingston and whips, but Kingston blocks. Kingston backhands Fox right down! Gacy runs at Ruff, but Ruff goes to crucifix. Kingston drags Ruff off Gacy and into a half nelson. Discus Half ‘n’ Half combo! Gacy covers Ruff, TWO!! Ruff is proving to be superhuman and it infuriates Gacy. But Gacy and Kingston coordinate. Kingston looms over Ruff as Gacy gets a table! Gacy sets that table up while Kingston keeps Ruff in a corner.
Kingston sits Ruff up top to CHOP, then climbs up to join him. He wants to bomb Ruff! Fox goes Coast 2 Coast on Gacy! Ruff fights back and hits a SUPER CRUCIFIX, the Ruff Ride! Ruff then DIVES onto Gacy, through that table!! Fox gives Kingston the 450 Splash! Cover, Fox & Ruff win!!
Winners: AR Fox & Leon Ruff, Fox pinning; NEW Evolve Tag Team Champions
The Skulk has gold! Philly is ready to celebrate along with them as they dance it out in the ring! But will this be the last The Skulk has seen of The Unwanted?
Evolve looks at the history of Catch Point.
The now WWE Cruiserweight Champion, Drew Gulak, founded a team of “like-minded wrestlers” in Evolve, all the way back in 2015. Catch Point was a philosophy. The style was all about isolating weakness, and taking back what is the heart of pro-wrestling. Gulak wanted his group to be strong, so he recruited Matt Riddle into the fold. Riddle agreed that wrestling is about taking the opponent down by any means necessary. You beat someone down, make them submit, or just knock them out.
And so when NXT returned to Philly recently, Drew Gulak threw out an open challenge! Who answered? Matt Riddle, naturally. Riddle said the 10th Anniversary was the perfect place to do this, bro. Now Catch Point partners face off in a match four years in the making. Who will prove themselves the superior submission specialist?
Matt Riddle VS Drew Gulak!
This #CatchPointReunion doesn’t need to be for titles or anything like that. It is all about both men’s pride and skill as true wrestlers. Will the Original Bro slow the Philly Stretcher down on the way to Extreme Rules? Or will Gulak make Riddle simply tap out?
Catch Point trainees take a jog around the ring, and then stand at attention for the captain! Philly’s own walks in and his trainees give the Catch Point salute before taking their leave. The bell rings and the Catch Point founders stare down. They circle and tie up. Gulak keeps Riddle off him, and they go again. Gulak spins around but Riddle trips Gulak up, but Gulak kicks Riddle away. Fans are loving this as Riddle and Gulak test the waters. Riddle throws hands and gets Gulak down but Gulak is ready with a facelock. Riddle rolls Gulak and gets a rear mount but Gulak slips out the back. Gulak has a leg but Riddle rolls through to escape the ankle lock. Philly sings for their hometown hero as he and Riddle approach again.
Riddle and Gulak tie up and go around, and Riddle pushes Gulak against ropes. Riddle backs off and Gulak circles with him again. Gulak gets caught in a waistlock and Riddle slams him down! Riddle keeps on that rear mount but Gulak endures as Riddle grab the arm. Gulak stands up out of the hammerlock but Riddle holds on. Riddle chinlocks but Gulak pries the hands away. Gulak turns Riddle around and into the GuLock! But Riddle rolls off! Riddle has the arm but Gulak has the ropebreak right away. Fans cheer as Riddle backs off. Gulak and Riddle circle and tie up again. Riddle powers Gulak to a corner but the ref gets them apart, only for Riddle to throw hands. Riddle kicks away on Gulak, but Gulak boots back! Gulak hops up and leaps, into a Bro-Trigger!
Both men are down but Riddle is up first to hit the Bro-Ton! Cover, ONE, but Riddle is on the arm again. Gulak endures but Riddle wants the Bromission! Gulak pops out to a cover, ONE! The two back off and fans cheer this technical exchange. Gulak and Riddle circle again as fans duel. Riddle throws jabs and kicks but Gulak throws haymakers. Gulak gets knees in then snap suplexes Riddle to a cover, ONE! Gulak and Riddle glare as Gulak gets a cravat. Riddle fights back but Gulak snapmares to a cover. ONE, but Gulak CHOPS Riddle on the back. Gulak puts on a headscissor and grabs a leg to deny Riddle’s escape. Riddle moves up and around, pops out, but Gulak ducks the Penalty Kick! Gulak and Riddle circle again and start throwing hands!
Gulak facelocks, then Gotch holds. Riddle fights his way out but Gulak headlocks. Philly decides they love “Both These Guys!” as Gulak drags Riddle down. Riddle endures the chinlock crank and works out the back. Riddle throws big hands but Gulak standing switches and rolls, but into Riddle’s powerbomb! TWO, Bro-Trigger blocked! Into Gulak’s bomb! High stack, TWO, but into a Half Crab! Fans are loving this back and forth as Riddle endures. But Riddle powers up and gets the ropebreak! Gulak falls off the hold, just as tired as Riddle right now. Gulak goes right at Riddle and throws big uppercuts! He drags Riddle up but Riddle throws hands back. Riddle CHOPS away from both sides, then ducks Gulak’s lariat. Ripcord Bro-Trigger! Cover, TWO!!
Gulak survives and goes to the corner, but Riddle drags him out to drop another Bro-Ton! Riddle goes to a corner and climbs up top. But Gulak grabs him for a SUPER BACK SUPLEX! Cover, TWO!! Both men are down but fans still duel and rally. Riddle crawls as a standing count begins. The count reaches 5 before Gulak sits up. Gulak and Riddle head for each other, and Riddle CHOPS Gulak around. Gulak grabs a leg but Riddle sprawls. Riddle clubs and ax kicks away on Gulak’s back! Penalty Kick! Cover, TWO! Gulak grins and Riddle scowls as the two stand up again. Philly says “This is Awesome!” as Gulak and Riddle throw hands again. Gulak headbutts low then does it again. He waistlocks Riddle up to a full nelson. Riddle resists and slips around to the GULOCK!? He’s taking Gulak’s move!!
But Gulak knows how to get out, only for Riddle to get a triangle! Gulak gets the ropebreak and Riddle holds on until 4. Riddle stomps Gulak down then drags him up, but Gulak cradle counters! TWO, and Riddle CHOPS! Fisherman buster and cradle cover, TWO! Philly is on their feet as Catch Point’s battle continues. Gulak rolls to the apron as fans duel harder than ever. Riddle drags Gulak up for a sleeper at the ropes, but Gulak hotshots him away! Gulak gets up as Riddle gasps for air. Gulak grins, but Riddle is right on him for a deadlift SUPER German!! Like a certain Golden Star! Riddle climbs as fans chant “Yowie Wowie!” FLOATING BRO, into the GULOCK!! Gulak has Riddle flailing and reaching, so far from ropes! But Riddle flips over, to gut wrench Gulak, BRO DEREK! Cover, Riddle wins!!
Winner: Matt Riddle, by pinfall
The Catch Point reunion did not disappoint, and Riddle can say he beat the Cruiserweight Champion! But will Gulak have better luck against the Premier Athlete, Tony Nese, at Extreme Rules?
Gulak grabs a mic to speak. “Catch Point was founded on three things: competition, opportunity, and respect.” Fans cheer those pillars. Gulak tells Riddle that as Cruiserweight Champion, in an Evolve ring, “bro, you are a hell of a competitor. I respect you, and it is always an honor.” The two shake hands and even hug it out. They give their Catch Point salute, and Philly joins in. Gulak even tells Curt Stallion something real quick. “I’ve got news for you. Matthew Riddle handpicked you to be his opponent tomorrow,” so hopefully the Lone Star is up to the task. Stallion and Riddle will have their showdown, will it become a #Brodown?
Evolve welcomes Bryan Idol.
Apparently, “Evolve wouldn’t be where it is without Bryan Idol,” but only Idol seems to think that. Fans boo this special guest ring announcer even as he struggles to make the introduction for the next match. Fans even tell Idol to STFU. Idol has a dry throat it seems. He refocuses, but then the lights go out? When they come back up, Idol isn’t in the ring, it’s PAUL HEYMAN!! Philly loves Heyman and “E C DUB! E C DUB!” Heyman bows to his Philly faithful and then sees the mic Idol left behind. Fans tell Heyman “Welcome Back!” and Heyman introduces himself. He is honored and privileged to be back, especially after fans chant, “Thank You, Heyman!” Heyman thanks them in return, because he is honored to be home.
Heyman lets us in on a personal secret that Heyman has always been offered all sorts of guest spots on all sorts of shows, but he doesn’t really do that kind of stuff. To be honest, he wasn’t actually invited here. But don’t boo, it was because Evolve just knew Heyman doesn’t do this. But this time, Heyman asked Evolve if he could be here tonight. Heyman has to tell the “shmuck” in the corner to shut up, because he’s the “extreme due with the microphone.”
But to the reason why Heyman is here, it’s because the Evolve fans and roster are the future! Heyman won’t be one of those old guys watching the glory days. He wants to know more about the future of this industry than when he walked in here. But given that Heyman is fat and sweating his ass off, he wants to hurry up and announce this next match. Because a few years from now, when fans watch this back, they’re gonna be thinking, “That was the moment we all knew this industry is going to evolve.”
Evolve and WWN Championship Unification: Austin Theory VS JD Drake!
The Blue Collar Badass from Shelby, North Carolina is seen as the underdog against the #FutureLegend. At least, the Future Legend thinks so. Theory is ready to prove he is worthy of his title, JD’s title, and of every spotlight and big stage from here to Wrestlemania. JD says he’s the better man, but Theory wants to prove he’s put in just as much work. Both men have fought and sacrificed, from losing loved ones to battling inner demons. JD is the every man, but Theory wants to be the man. Whose journey has made them the stronger man as they battle for both belts?
Heyman marvels at the fact Evolve has pyro. But Heyman does his duties as the ring announcer, framing this as a title for title, winner takes all match. Foreshadowing for Extreme Rules perhaps? He also introduces the “reigning, defending, undisputed Evolve Champion, AUSTIN! THEORY!” and “a man who only needs one damn nickname, the Blue Collar Badass” and “reigning, defending, undisputed WWN Champion, J! D! DRAKE!” Fans chant “Thank You, Paulie!” as Heyman makes his exit. With that, the belts are raised, and the bell rings as history begins!
Drake and Theory stare down as fans duel. The two approach and then Drake shoves Theory. Theory SLAPS Drake, so Drake swings punches. Theory ducks, kicks low and underhooks Drake! He wants his finisher, Ataxia, already, but Drake powers out to underhook Theory! Theory denies Drillbit, then starts counter punching. Theory whips but Drake blocks with power. Drake whips but Theory goes up and over then ducks to dropkick! Drake stays standing but Theory dodges, only to get Drake’s dropkick! Theory bails out and shakes out the cobwebs, but Drake builds speed. Drake runs into Theory’s forearm! Theory drags Drake out to throw hands, but then he misses and forearms the post!
Drake CHOPS Theory back and Theory goes reeling. Drake drags Theory up for another CHOP and Theory flops to the floor. Fans want “One More Time!”, so Drake drags Theory up to shove him against the apron, and CHOP again! Theory falls to the floor and crawls away to the ramp. Drake stalks him and throws more hands. Drake wants to bomb, but Theory back drops Drake onto the ramp! Fans fire up as Theory stomps Drake. Theory mocks Drake’s journey of 15 years compared to his sensational 3. Theory drags Drake in and covers, TWO! “C’mon, that was five!” The ref says it was not, and Drake hits Theory back. Theory clubs Drake to a corner then CHOPS. But it only makes Drake made! Theory wants Drake to take it easy, but chops again! Drake doesn’t flinch as he CHOPS Theory again!
Theory gets up to club Drake down and stomps him to ropes. Theory kicks Drake against the ropes, then snap suplexes him down. Cover, TWO! Theory keeps on Drake with a half straitjacket. Fans rally up as Drake endures. Drake throws hands and gets free, but Theory blocks a kick for a saido suplex! Theory hops over to hit the standing moonsault! Cover, TWO! Theory keeps his cool and catches his breath. He stalks Drake to a corner and throws forearms in. Theory drags Drake into the ropes and mocks him, “Tell them a sad story!” Drake CHOPS Theory back, but Theory runs in for a stiff forearm to the back. Theory throws more big forearms, but Drake just feeds off it.
Fans rally up and Drake stands. Drake dares Theory to really hit him. “You can’t hit me harder than life has!” Theory tries with another chop, but Drake CHOPS Theory off his feet! Theory gets up again and clotheslines, but Drake stays up. He keeps trying but he just gets Drake down to a knee. Drake blocks the next clothesline to give one back! Fans fire up as both men slowly stir. They stand on opposite ends of the ring, and Drake runs in, only to get an elbow. Theory runs in but into a BIG scoop slam! Both men are down again while Drake rolls to the far corner. Fans continue to duel as the standing count begins. Drake heads for Theory as they both stand at 6. Theory drop toeholds Drake into buckles, then slingshot shotgun dropkicks!
Drake is in a corner, Theory runs corner to corner, crossbody splash and then a float to a sweep. Slingshot stomps miss and Drake drags Theory out, to toss him up. Theory bounces off the ropes and Drake ROCKS him with that right! Drake rests against the post to catch his breath. He gets Theory back in but Theory rolls out the other end. So Drake DIVES! Direct hit right to the railing! Drake puts Theory back in and runs at the corner, to CHOP! Then he scoops and slams Theory into a drop zone. Drake hops up, Vader Bomb! Cover, TWO!! Theory survives but Drake keeps his focus. Drake sees an opening so he climbs up again. But Theory is up and clubs Drake’s back. Theory climbs up behind but Drake elbows him away. Drake turns around, leaping leg lariat!
Theory is down in the corner, but he gets clear of the cannonball! Then Theory somersaults, for the blockbuster! Cover, TWO!! Both Drake and Theory are down but fans know “This is Awesome!” The referee checks on Theory but he’s okay to continue with a bloody nose. Theory storms over to Drake and drags him up. Theory underhooks, but Drake resists to tackle Theory to a corner. Drake stands Theory up to CHOP him again! Drake hoists Theory up top to CHOP yet again! Theory gasps for air, and Drake chops even more. Drake climbs up but Theory fights back. Theory slips down, but Drake holds on to punch Theory down. Theory leaps to club Drake on the back! Then he gets Drake in a torture rack!
With wobbly legs, Theory powers Drake through Three Seconds Around the World! Cover, TWO!! Drake survives Theory’s tower hacker bomb and Theory can’t believe! Fans chant “Mamma Mia!” as Theory talks to himself. Theory shouts at Drake, “Your kids are going to watch me!” He drags Drake back up, underhooks, but Drake back drops out! Drake staggers to a corner, but so does Theory. Drake runs in but into a boot! Theory somersaults, into a STUNNER!! Theory flops around, Drake runs in for the CANNONBALL! Then underhook, lift, DRILLBIT! The butterfly neckbreaker hits! Cover, TWO!!! But Drake doesn’t even question it, he just climbs! MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO!?! Theory still lives and Drake is just exhausted! Philly still loves this match because “This is Awesome!”
Drake and Theory stir, then sit up. They lean on each other, then Drake CHOPS Theory down. Theory sits back up to forearm Drake back. Drake CHOPS again, but Theory comes back with forearms. They stand and pick up steam, Drake CHOPS again. Theory still keeps throwing forearms, Drake ducks one but gets an elbow, to SUPERKICK! Underhook, inside fisherman, and Theory flips Drake, only for Drake to land on his feet?! Drake LARIATS Theory down! Drake hurries to a corner and climbs up again, MOONSAULT FLOPS! SUPERKICK, and another! And another! ATAXIA!! Cover, Theory wins!!
Winner: Austin Theory, by pinfall; still Evolve and NEW WWN Champion
History has been made, and the unified titles belong to the #REALSuperstar! Is this just the beginning of the legend that is the Future Legend, Austin Theory?
Theory takes a moment to soak in the moment before he gets a mic. “Everyone knows that Evolve Wrestling is where it’s at. And everybody’s gonna try their hardest to get here.” Theory tosses down the WWN belt and steps on it as he continues. “They’ll chase their dreams, and realize that the Evolve Championship symbolizes that your dream must go through me if you want to get to where you want to go!” Because Theory is the measuring stick of Evolve! Theory is the standard of Evolve! Theory is the REAL SUPERSTAR of Evolve!
But wait, the lights go down and… Josh Briggs appears! Theory turns around, into the choke slam! Briggs sees the Evolve title and picks it up. He has staked his claim and has sent his message. When and where will Briggs get his shot at his dream?
Evolve takes a closer look at Josh Briggs.
“I get to show the world why I’m the best in Evolve.” This towering titan got into pro-wrestling because “it’s one of the only legal ways to get into a fight with someone.” The Disliker of People is coming for the title, who here can stop him?
NXT Championship: Adam Cole VS Akira Tozawa!
This main event practically epitomizes the potential Evolve brings out of its wrestlers! The Stamina Monster of Dragongate USA and former Cruiserweight Champion returns to an ovation of “AH! AH!” But the Panama City Playboy returns to #ShocktheSystem, BAYBAY! Will Cole’s Championship Celebration Tour stay spotless? Or will Tozawa bring that title with him to 205 Live?
The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and this incredible crossover main event begins!
Cole and Tozawa stare down as fans duel. They circle as the dueling gets louder. Cole and Tozawa tie up and go around the ring. Cole gets Tozawa in a corner, but backs off, “BAYBAY!” Fans cheer as Cole takes a bow. Tozawa just smiles and circles with Cole again. Cole waistlocks but Tozawa counters with a wristlock and shoulder breaker. Cole rolls around to wrench Tozawa back. Tozawa rolls and trips Cole to a headlock. Cole fights against the hold but Tozawa holds on. Fans echo “AH! AH!” for Tozawa as he cranks Cole more. Cole headscissors but Tozawa powers out to the headlock again. Cole works his way out of the headlock to get his own. Tozawa powers out but Cole runs him over. Cole brushes his shoulder off but things speed up.
Tozawa slips out of the back suplex and shoves Cole to dodge and tilt-o-whirl into the Iron Octopus! Cole hurries to the ropes and Tozawa lets him go. Tozawa kicks Cole around the ropes and throws hands. He whips Cole corner to corner but Cole tosses him to the apron. Tozawa kicks Cole away then climbs up top. Cole trips Tozawa and Tozawa hits buckles on the way down! Cole bicycle boots Tozawa down! Fans cheer as Cole drags Tozawa back up, and drops him with a neckbreaker. Cole looms over Tozawa as fans duel again. Cole brings Tozawa up and throws a big forearm. He stomps Tozawa in the corner then drags Tozawa up to wrench and whip hard! Tozawa bounces off buckles while Cole flexes.
Cole drags Tozawa up for a snapmare, then drives his knee in. He slaps Tozawa in the head, then wraps on a chinlock. Tozawa endures and fans rally up. Tozawa works his way around and reaches, but Cole wrangles him from the ropes. Fans rally and duel more as Tozawa flops around. Tozawa gets up and fights free, only to run into Cole’s back elbow. Cole catches his breath and looms over Tozawa. “I’m the man now. You hear me? I’m the man. I’m going to be the NXT Champion forever. And you, Tozawa? You suck!” Tozawa SLAPS Cole! Cole throws a forearm but Tozawa gives it back. They brawl now, and Tozawa gets the edge. Cole knees low then runs, but into Tozawa’s fireman’s carry! Cole fights with elbows, but Tozawa still tosses him!
Tozawa runs to shotgun dropkick Cole out! Then Tozawa runs to DIVE! Direct hit with the Tozawa Torpedo! But he’s not done there, Tozawa goes again. But Cole gets clear, so Tozawa becomes a CANNONBALL! Fans rally with “AH! AH!” as Tozawa has to pull his leg from the railing’s gap. Tozawa is free and puts Cole back in. Tozawa climbs high and hits a missile dropkick! Cover, TWO! Tozawa keeps his focus as fans “AH! AH!” again. Tozawa drags Cole up into a waistlock. Cole standing switches but so does Tozawa. They go back and forth, Cole breaks free to enziguri! And backstabber! Cover, TWO! Tozawa is tougher than that, and Cole keeps his cool.
Cole drags Tozawa back up, fireman’s carry of his own, but Tozawa fights out. Tozawa runs, but into the BOOT! Fireman’s carry, Ushigoroshi! Cover, TWO! Cole gets to a corner as fans duel again. Tozawa sits up and Cole throws forearms on him. Tozawa just feeds off them! He gives them back and it’s a brawl as fans still duel. Tozawa gets an edge and he beats Cole down to a knee! HE runs, but into another BOOT! Only to fire up more! Another BOOT, and Cole runs, into Tozawa’s boot! Enziguri, then run, but he falls for the feint! JAB rocks Cole, but he still SUPERKICKS Tozawa! Tozawa’s mouth piece flew out!! Fans chant “Yowie Wowie!” for that exchange.
Tozawa and Cole crawl to the same corner, and Tozawa climbs up top again. Cole stops him with a forearm to climb up and join him. Tozawa resists the superplex, but Cole throws body shots. Tozawa throws his own with every “AH! AH!” Cole resists Tozawa’s counter and throws more forearms. Tozawa knocks Cole down with one! Then leaps, into a SUPERKICK! Last Shot brain buster! Cover, TWO!! Tozawa survives and Cole is in disbelief. Cole rolls out of the ring and wants to quit? He takes the title and brings it into the ring! The referee reprimands Cole, but wait! It’s Johnny Gargano!! Gargano distracts Cole, Tozawa rolls Cole! TWO, Snap German!
Tozawa is all fired up and Gargano is fired up with him. But Cole fights out of the waistlock to run. But Tozawa kicks, swings, slips under, rolling roundhouse! Tozawa puts Cole in a drop zone and climbs up again, for the SUPER SENTON! But Cole gets knees up! Cole hops up, DESTROYER! Knee pad down, Last Shot shining wizard! Cover, Cole wins!
Winner: Adam Cole, by pinfall; still NXT Champion
Cole stays your champion, BAYBAY! But Gargano now enters the ring as fans duel between him and the champ. They stare down, and Gargano dares Cole to put the belt on the line between them. Cole refuses, he does things his way and on his time. But the decision is ultimately up to NXT General Manager, William Regal. Will Regal determine if Johnny Wrestling gets another shot at Adam Cole BAYBAY?
While Cole leaves, Gargano checks on Tozawa. Fans chant for them both and Gargano wants a mic now. Gargano appreciates the chants for him, but he wants them to cheer Tozawa again. Fans do with “AH! AH!” Gargano says, “Every single time I step back in this building, I’m reminded how much I truly love what we do.” Gargano was at Evolve 1 in 2009! And 10 years later, Evolve 131 on the WWE Network tells Gargano two things. One: he’s getting old. Two: pro-wrestling in 2019 is “pretty freakin’ cool!” It’s cool because of the fans, so Gargano gives his thanks.
But thinking back, Evolve would close with a particular question. It’s been awhile since Gargano’s done something like this. But does Tozawa remember the question? Maybe. “Did you enjoy the show?” Philly says “YES! YES! WoooooOOO~!” Well give a round of applause for that guy at the end there. And can he do that again? “WoooooOOO~!” Philly loses their minds for that one. But Gargano wants to be serious. There would be no Akira Tozawa, no offense, or Adam Cole, or Johnny Wrestling, if it wasn’t for the Evolve fans. “We all started here, and you let guys let us live our dreams, and we can’t thank you enough for that.”
But there’s one more thing the fans need to do. Tonight wasn’t about WWE, NXT and the crossover, but about the true Evolve Wrestling roster. They are the future of this industry! JD Drake, Austin Theory, Shotzi Blackheart, and the rest! Support them as much as you supported the previous stars. Gargano thanks them on behalf of everyone else. The fans love him and he loves them! But they’re running out of time so let’s wrap this up. Gargano loves the fans, he loves Evolve, thanks so much! With that, Gargano and Tozawa hug and Gargano lifts Tozawa’s hand. Tozawa bows in thanks to the fans while Gargano gives out high-fives to the fans. Evolve has made it 10 years, here’s to another 10!
I’m sure covering this event comes as a surprise. This was my first Evolve event ever, and to be honest, I decided to watch this one because of the crossover with WWE/NXT, and because it was going to be on the Network. But I’m sure like me, many WWE fans heard about this, got curious because of said crossover, and took the time to watch this almost-3-hour event during this already busy wrestling weekend. And if not, they might find time later in the week to do it, when there isn’t something they watch. Whenever someone watches this, I’m confident they will be as blown away as I was by pretty much everything they saw tonight!
Jumping right in without any real knowledge didn’t hurt this event at all, because everyone was on their game, and like all wrestling promotions, it did as much as it could to give context while you’re watching and listening. It was clear from the opening the animosity between Harlem Bravado and Stephen Wolf, and the animosity for everyone from Josh Briggs. It was also great to see a lot of familiar faces like Babatunde, Sean Maluta, Arturo Ruas (Jaoude) and even Colby Corino. Maluta getting to be part of a group like The Unwanted is going to be good for him to really spark something in him, since he’s just been jobber Cruiserweight for 205 Live and NXT. It was also good to see other faces from other non-WWE related things like AR Fox (Dante Fox when he was on Lucha Underground).
Briggs VS Greene was a solid opener with the usual but still well done manager tropes. Briggs wins because obviously we see later, he’s on the rise. That Fatal 4 Way with Wolf, Bravado, Stallion and Maluta was incredible, and it feels pretty big for Wolf to win that. And clearly they’re planning ahead to give Wolf and Bravado a bigger feud. Henry VS Ruas, holy hell, can NXT get these guys going more once we’re past Summerslam? Ruas/Jaoude is clearly better than he’s been on NXT, just because NXT’s been stacked. If Velveteen Dream keeps the North American Championship, give the Brazilian Tiger a chance. Or even if it’s Roderick Strong, let Anthony Henry come up with an NXT name and give him a go. Babatunde has a great story building with The Unwanted, he and Colby made that squash match a lot better than normal.
The Unwanted VS The Skulk (I guess is the team name) was a great tag match. It really fits in an apparently tag heavy weekend when you factor in WWE Extreme Rules and AEW Fight for the Fallen. Perhaps tag team wrestling is finally getting some respect. But it was also a great move for this anniversary special to give us new tag champions, this will be big for Fox and Ruff. And depending on how things go, I wonder if Babatunde works with them against The Unwanted for a match or two. The women’s No DQ match was insane, but totally fitting of this Extreme Rules weekend, too. I didn’t know much about Shotzi before this, but she earned major respect doing that tope suicida into the tower of chairs. And while she loses, it works for both her and Brandi to get the right kinds of heat with the story of the match.
Then the last three matches were all so great, with or without the history. Catch Point Reunion, Gulak VS Riddle, wow! This is why Gulak is Cruiserweight Champion and why Matt Riddle needs to be a champion at or after Toronto. It was great to have Heyman back, he’s amazing, and the title unification match was killer. With Briggs on the rise, it works for the Heel to win so now the Face is in the chase. Then the NXT Championship involving alumni was good stuff, but obviously Cole was going to retain with Tozawa being more involved with 205 Live, and with NXT advertising the defense for Wednesday. Gargano showing up was a nice surprise, even though he wasn’t going to cost Cole. Gargano seems to want another shot, maybe he’s the one on Wednesday? And Gargano’s closing speech was great, that seals the deal on both new and longtime Evolve fans sticking with this promotion.
My Score: 8.6/10
Opinion22 hours ago
Chris Jericho vs. Shawn Michaels And The Interesting Place Chris Jericho Wrote Out Their Classic WrestleMania XIX Match
WWE PPV/Specials Coverage13 hours ago
Andrew’s WWE Extreme Rules 2019 Ratings & Analysis
AEW Coverage23 hours ago
Rob: In Defense Of Silly Sh@#!
Coverage19 hours ago
Mitchell’s WWE Extreme Rules Results & Report! (7/14/19)