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Mitchell’s NJPW AXS TV Results: Destruction in Kobe Part 2!

NOW the Destruction Tour ends!



NJPW Destruction in Kobe 2019

The tour finally ends with this!

Destruction in Kobe wraps up the tour with more Tranquilo! But can Tetsuya Naito keep his IWGP Intercontinental Championship against Jay White?


Coverage of Destruction in Kobe 2019 will be as broadcast by AXS TV



  • 8 Man Tag: Suzuki-Gun VS Jushin Thunder Liger, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Rocky Romero & Tiger Mask; Suzuki-Gun wins, by disqualification.
  • IWGP Intercontinental Championship: Tetsuya Naito VS Jay White; White wins and becomes the new IWGP Intercontinental Champion.


NJPW and AXS set the scene for this epic ending to Destruction!

No man has held both the IWGP Intercontinental and Heavyweight Championships at the same time, but Tetsuya Naito wants to make that his destiny. However, his heavyweight path was blocked in the G1 Climax by none other than the man he faces tonight! The Switchblade, Jay White defeated Naito on the B Block finale, eliminating him from the G1 Climax Finals while scoring this opportunity at the same time. Plus, White beat Naito down during their tag team match on the Super J Cup in Long Beach event. White claims his destiny is to become what Naito wants to be! Will White steal Naito’s goal away from him? Or will Naito hold on to his fate?

Meanwhile, Jushin Thunder Liger is on the home stretch of his career, but the Meanest Man in the World wants to ruin it all. Minoru Suzuki humiliated Liger by stealing his mask in Kagoshima! But Liger vowed revenge here in Kobe! What happens as they and their allies collide in an epic 8 Man Tag?!


8 Man Tag: Suzuki-Gun VS Jushin Thunder Liger, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Rocky Romero & Tiger Mask!

The fighting doesn’t even start with the bell, it starts with Liger attacking Suzuki himself on the ramp! Liger has his spare mask as he stomps Suzuki down. But Suzuki-Gun saves their leader as Yoshinobu Kanemaru, Zack Sabre Jr and Douki attack back! Liger’s team reinforces him as Tanahashi, Rocky and Tiger Mask appear! Liger takes Suzuki to ringside and the bell rings just so this action can be on the record!

Liger whips Suzuki at barriers but Suuzki reverses to send him in! Tiger Mask whips Kanemaru while Tanahashi bumps ZSJ off the apron. Rocky brawls with Douki while Liger crawls. Liger gets up while the referee tries to restore order. Suzuki has a chair and starts looking for someone to hit! Liger stands up but Suzuki jams the chair into him! Suzuki brings out a table! He puts it and the chair in the ring, the goes after Liger with stomps. Suzuki-Gun continues to brawl with the others, Tiger Mask and Kanemaru having ended up in the “cheap seats.” Suzuki puts Liger in the ring, and then stands the table up in a corner. Suzuki whips Liger but Liger blocks. Suzuki knees and haymakers, then uses the chair on THE REF! Suzuki jams and SMACKS Liger in the head!! The seat of the chair breaks off!! Liger flops to the mat in a heap!

Suzuki is after the mask again! ZSJ, Kanemaru and Douki keep Liger’s team away, and Suzuki shoves the ref back down! Suzuki wants to shame Liger again as he puts on a sleeper hold! Liger fight his way up, and mule kick low blows!! Liger then… undoes his mask himself?! Look at all that face paint! Liger has transformed from Jushin to KISHIN! The Beast God swings claws at Suzuki, but Suzuki ducks! Liger SPITS MIST into Suzuki’s eyes! And even the ref’s eyes!? Kishin Liger shows no mercy as he brings in… A SPIKE!? The match is thrown out, but what is this spike all about?! Liger runs at Suzuki in the corner!! Suzuki dodges and that spoke stabs through the table!! Suzuki almost lost his life! But Liger takes the table, and throws it at Suzuki! Suzuki gets clear again, and is scared for his life! Though, who can blame him? At the same time, Suzuki has brought this upon himself, as Liger is giving chase!

Suzuki-Gun runs for it, fans are both confused and upset, and Tanahashi tries to calm Liger. Liger shoves him and several others down as he keeps moving forward. Young Lions do their best to keep Liger from hunting Suzuki down! Will the wrath of Kishin Liger be satisfied until he’s destroyed Suzuki?


IWGP Intercontinental Championship: Tetsuya Naito VS Jay White!

The Switchblade wants to steal the Ungovernable’s destiny, and that starts with this title! Will Naito be able to hold onto his golden dream against the wily White?

The introductions are made, the belt is raised and Naito takes his time with his entrance gear as always. White lets Naito take all the time he wants, because “a new destino is about to start.” NJPW on AXS goes to break while Naito finishes up.

NJPW on AXS returns with the bell, and the fans are already thunderous for Naito! White and Naito circle, but White bails out, a usual tactic. White wants Naito to keep his distance, and then takes his time returning. Naito then bails out to use White’s own move. White waits, and even gives Naito an easy target by turning around. Naito returns but doesn’t take the bait. They circle, but Naito toys with White with the false approach. And again! Naito tells White, “Tranquilo!” White wants Naito to get serious, and Naito promises to do this. They tie up, Naito rolls White, TWO! Naito cradles, TWO! White swings into a backslide, ONE, White ducks a kick but runs into a headlock takeover. White headscissors but Naito pops out, then ducks to Tranquilo! White is annoyed but Naito bails out again to troll White. White gives chase, but Naito gets back in, and now Naito acts like this is on White for delaying things.

White gets into the ring in a huff but Naito stomps him down! Naito drags White up and cravats to a corner. White fights back but Naito elbows him down! Naito throws more elbows, then snapmares White to a chinlock. Naito rakes White’s eyes but Red Shoes reprimands him. Naito lets up, and White reaches with a leg. White gets the ropebreak, so Naito lets go. Naito gives White a chance to get up, and then calls for a test of strength. But that’s just to sucker White in, because Naito kicks low. Naito throws haymakers and pulls White’s hair. Naito whips White corner to corner, then jump kicks and sweeps, but Gedo creeps too close. White avoids the combination but not a boot. Naito goes to run but Gedo anchors a foot! White slides out and trips Naito to split the wishbone on the post! Fans boo as White asks how Naito is doing.

White drags Naito out and CHOPS! Then White whips Naito into railings hard! White drags Naito up again and wants some time from Red Shoes to whip Naito into more railing! Naito falls into the front row! White goes back to the ring and mocks the Tranquilo pose! Fans boo while White calls for the ring count. Red Shoes begins the count as Naito slowly rises. Naito is up at 6/20, but barely to the doorway at 10. He crawls at 13, then stands at 15, but gets in at 17. White stomps Naito over and over to keep him down! Fans rally up for Naito but Gedo applauds White. White CHOPS Naito then whips, to run him over with an elbow! Cover, TWO! Whtie is annoyed but he puts Naito in a camel clutch! “Show them that smile!” White rakes Naito’s face and forces him to smile! Naito endures all of this, and manages to crawl to a ropebreak with the feet! White holds on until 4, then goes out of the ring.

White drags Naito out and rams him into railing in front of commentary! And again! And again! White lets Naito fall while he double guns and Too Sweets. White drags Naito up as fans cheer for him, but White covers. Red Shoes refuses to count, not enough time has passed from him playing dirty with those rails. White kicks Naito further into the ring to then sit up for a cravat. Naito endures the neck wrench, and grabs at White’s hair. White cranks harder but Naito elbows back. White throws Naito down by his hair! Fans rally up but White stands Naito up. Naito fires back with forearms! White blocks a kick to throw Naito by his hair again! Naito writhes while White catches his breath. White drags Naito up, suplexes, but Naito resists. White clubs away on Naito’s back to then egg him on. Naito pulls White’s hair in return! Naito spins White around, neckbreaker! Both men are down but fans rally!

Naito stands first and goes at White. Naito throws forearms and whips, but White reverses, only for Naito to hold the ropes. Naito hits back and huricanranas! White is in a corner, Naito runs in, but misses the kick. Naito dodges White, then arm-drags him and elbows, basement dropkick! Naito poses, fist up and eye open! Fans fire up as Naito drags White back up. Naito scoops into the dragon sleeper, inverted DDT! Cover, TWO! White crawls but Naito stands. Naito drags White up, reels him in, but White resists the German Suplex. White elbows out but Naito clubs him hard! Naito dragon sleepers, backbreaker to leg scissor nelson! Naito starts slapping White in the head, talking trash back for all of White’s talk! White powers his way up but Naito powers him back down! White reaches out with a leg and gets the ropebreak! Naito holds on tighter until 4, and White crawls to a corner.

Naito wants White to smile before he throws hands. Naito hoists White up top but White fights back with stomps. Naito falls over, White hops down. White boots Naito but Naito blocks it! Naito SPITS on White then clobbers him with rights! Naito whips corner to corner but White slides to stop, comes back and DDT’s Naito down! But both men are down as White needs to catch his breath again. Naito clutches his neck as he gets to the far corner. White is also up and throwing up Too Sweets as we go to break.

NJPW on AXS returns and White runs in corner to corner for a BIG European Uppercut! And then a Half Hatch suplex! White holds on for a second Half Hatch! White keeps hold, but Naito resists the third and powers White to a corner. White holds on so Naito rams him in again. Naito tries a third time but White redirects him to the apron through the middle rope! White throws EuroUpper after EuroUpper, and a CHOP! White runs and hits another big EuroUpper! Naito is hanging on the rope, White drags him out, and like a viper, draping DDT! Cover, TWO!! White can’t believe it but Red Shoes defends that was a fair count. The 15 minute mark has passed and White drags Naito around. Naito resists the urenage, but White CHOPS him again! White whips, Naito leaps, but has to fight out again. Naito swings into the Complete Shot! DEAD LIFT GERMAN! But White can’t hold the bridge. Even so, Gedo is happy and the fans are worried for Naito.

White sits up and grins at Naito, who is dazed. White mockingly asks the fans, “You think he’s going to be the first?!” White drags Naito up and throws him backwards into the buckles. And again! And then bounces him off the pad over and over! “You having fun!?” White keeps bouncing Naito off the pads, but lets up at Red Shoes’ count. White grins as he drags Naito around. White sits Naito up to CHOP back down! Gedo says do more, and he wants Naito to smile. White sits Naito up again, to CHOP back down! Gedo is the only one to applaud. White sits with Naito like they’re old pals, and then helps him stand up, to throw him with a SAIDO Suplex! Naito is down but White stands up to toy with him. White drags Naito up but Naito is dead weight. Red Shoes comes in to check, but Naito refuses to quit. White drags Naito up to stand him against the ropes. White walks to then run in with another EuroUpper!

White keeps Naito from falling over, and says, “Smile for me!” White runs, but Naito runs after to shotgun dropkick him down! Fans fire up as Naito has new life! But both Naito and White slowly stir. The rally gets Naito to rise, but White follows and CHOPS again. White runs, into a pop-up SPINEBUSTER! Naito gets back up while White crawls to a corner. Naito runs in, but blocks the boots to turn White sideways! Draping backbreaker! Naito hoists White up top, climbs up to join him, SUPER STEINER! Fans fire up as Naito stands up again. Naito drags White up, hammerlocks and hooks, GLORIA! Cover, TWO! White survives but Naito just feels more confident. Naito stands and drags White up at 20 minutes. White shoves Naito away and now Naito smiles. Naito stands on White at the ropes and rags him up from the outside. White swings, misses, Naito sweeps the legs! Swinging dropkick wrecks White, modified Combinacion Cabron!

Naito goes back to the apron and drags White up. Naito turns White but White fights out with elbows. Naito kicks away on White’s leg, but then swings into an apron Complete Shot! White pushes Naito back onto the apron, then drags him up. Red Shoes doesn’t want this, but White deadlifts Naito. Naito fights out but White throws him down by his hair! White drags Naito up, wants a driver but Naito resists. White clubs Naito on his back, gets him up, but Naito fights free to back drop White on the apron! White slumps down while Naito rests against the ropes. But White grabs Naito off the apron, to APRON POWERBOMB him! Naito flops to the floor, but White sits down to rest. Red Shoes checks but Naito is somehow okay to continue. White drags Naito up and into the ring and hauls him up. BIG Urenage! Cover, TWO!!

Fans cheer while Gedo coaches White to keep going. White drags Naito up, fisherman and suplex, but Naito fights out to counter with a DDT! Both men are down again but Kobe fires up more. White and Naito stir as the rally starts up again. Fans are all behind Naito while Gedo is coaching White. Naito is up first with a wild look on his face. Naito crawls to clobber White. White gets up to hit back! Naito hits White again but White comes back to throw furious forearms. Naito and White brawl all the way to their feet, big shot for big shot. And each man dares the other to smile. Naito decks then stomps White down, and keeps on him at the corner. The 25 minute mark passes, but Gedo is sneaking in! White holds Red Shoes down, Gedo SMACKS Naito in the back! Gedo gets away with his chair shot, and White fisherman, for the KIWI KRUSHER! Cover, TWO!?

Kobe cheers and White is in shock! But White slashes his throat, drags Naito up in position, but Naito fights out of Bladerunner! White drops Naito to stomp him over and over! White hauls Naito up but Naito enziguris! Naito whips, White reverses, Naito counters with flying forearms! Fans rally again, Naito stands White up, but White sits down before Naito can wrench. Fans boo as White crawls away. Gedo distracts Naito and Red Shoes, and White creeps over. Naito sees that coming, catches White and uses Gedo for the tornado DDT boost! White flounders but Naito is on him, wrench and tilt-o-whirl, but White blocks Destino! White flips Naito out, inverted DDT! Leg nelson and elbow shots over and over and over! Naito starts fading but White tires out before he can end Naito like that. But White sits Naito up and hauls him up in a sleeper, but Naito slips through for a German Suplex!

Naito aims, runs, tilt-o-whirl but White escapes. White has Naito but no Bladerunner yet, Naito swings, into the SLEEPER SUPLEX! White catches his breath while Naito is down on his face. White drags Naito up again, even as Kobe rallies up. White crisscrosses the arms, reels Naito in, but Naito slips out, only to swing into another Sleeper Suplex! White won’t be denied, he stands Naito, but Naito slips through to Snap Dragon Suplex! Tilt-o-whirl, but White blocks! But not forever, DESTINO! Cover, TWO!! That delay may have been just enough to save White! Naito doesn’t show frustration on his face, but determination! Naito stands White up, wrenches, tilt-o-whirl, but White denies again. White reels Naito in, but Naito resists, rolling heel kick! Naito hops on but White slips out the back. White brings Naito in, Naito SLAPS White! Then a scoop, but White fights out, BLADE RUNNER!! Cover, White wins!!

Winner: Jay White, by pinfall; NEW IWGP Intercontinental Champion

White pulls it off! Naito’s destiny seems further away than ever now! But will White be the one achieving a golden dream instead? We will hear from the new champion after the break.


NJPW on AXS returns as White takes to the mic.

“Where are you going?” Fans are storming out, they don’t want to hear from White. But White told them all that he’d beat Naito. Now look at all the “dipsh*ts” leaving just because they thought the hero would triumph. White mocks the Los Ingobernables de Japon tradition, by saying, “Buenos Noches, KOBEEE~!” Fans who did stay boo. But White tells Naito that “Please promise me you’ll do one thing: SMILE!” White laughs then moves on to more LIJ mocking, with the role call! “Gedo! Jado! Chase! Yujiro! Kenta! Fale! Tama (Tonga)! Tanga (Lao)! Hikuleo! Ishimori! El Phantasmo! Pito! Mr. Juicy!” And of course, Jay himself. “Nosotros Burrrrr~ BULLET CLUB~! FOR LIFE!”

White holds up the IWGP Intercontinental Championship and says finally, the belt has a real prestigious man to carry it around! The hottest asset in ALL of pro-wrestling! The man who sold out Madison Square Garden! The Last Rock ‘n’ Rolla, and the man to soon be dual Intercontinental AND Heavyweight Champion! Whether it is Okada, Sanada or… Wait, coming out from the shadows is Hirooki Goto! The Fierce Warrior enters the ring to DECK White! And then stomp him! White bails out, but it is clear Goto wants revenge on White by denying him that golden dream. Goto hands the belt back, but White denies that this match is happening.


NJPW Media Backstage Interview

White says, “I told you.” The fight had to end, and everyone knew it wouldn’t be Naito winning. But on the other side, Goto’s stock just rose for even being in that ring with White! “You’re welcome.” White says, “You’re welcome” to all of the wrestling world. And so his goal now is the four men who might be IWGP Heavyweight Champion after Wrestle Kingdom 14: Okada, Sanada, Ibushi and his folder, or Evil who wants to take that folder. But Goto is not in there at all because walking down to the ring doesn’t guarantee you a shot! Especially when Goto has lost to White! Goto is not worthy, he is an embarrassment! Goto has had more shots than he deserves, and that is an understatement! White again keeps his mind on Okada, Ibushi, Sanada and Evil. One of those four will be seeing White very soon. Until then, just breathe, with the Switchblade. Will White deny Goto an Intercontinental Championship match? Or will he be meeting one of those destined four in the New Year?



My Thoughts:

A great hour for AXS to wrap up Destruction, and a great choice to give Kobe two hours in total. We got to see that amazing moment when Liger unleashes his dark side in pursuit of revenge on Suzuki! Apparently there’s no room for Fighting Spirit Unleashed 2019 on the schedule this year, but it seems that three day weekend had a lot of “filler” matches that didn’t affect the stories playing out tonight. We don’t get New Japan Road either, so we missed seeing Liger go after Suzuki then. The next thing is King of Pro-Wrestling, which happens on 10/14/19, plenty of time for them to edit for Saturday Slam. That will have Liger VS Suzuki 1v1, so that should make for something great.

I feel like KOPW would have to get at least two hours, and probably in separate weeks. They’ve already advertised KOPW for 10/19/19 has Moxley VS Juice III, No Disqualifications for the United States Championship, that’ll be incredible. Depending on how busy Moxley is going to get in AEW, there’s a chance Juice wins, but Moxley might still be able to swing both promotions for a bit longer. There is also the other big matches of IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship of Ospreay VS Phantasmo, the Right to Challenge Contract of Ibushi VS EVIL, and of course THE IWGP Heavyweight Championship of Okada VS Sanada, and the latter two feed right into the biggest story going in NJPW right now: NJPW’s first dual champion.

White VS Naito tonight was great, with plenty of story to chew on, and it was a surprise for White to win relatively clean. But given the four men he named being seen as Faces, and half of them being LIJ, I suppose Naito couldn’t win in order to keep suspense. I doubt Goto wins that title of White, though I’m sure White will be forced to face him. White is trying to steal Naito’s dream, which is also Ibushi’s dream now of being a dual champion, so it’d make a lot of sense if Ibushi retains his contract against Evil and challenges at WK14. Doesn’t matter if it’s Okada or Sanada, I would love to see Ibushi take the title to be the top guy. Then we get at G1 Climax 29 Finals rematch, possibly in a #WinnerTakesAll situation so that one man makes history. Not sure how NJPW feels about that kind of stipulation, but it would make a lot of sense to do it at one of the major Spring events.

My Score: 8.8/10

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Mitchell’s WWE Raw Results & Report! (10/18/21)

One more stop before Crown Jewel!



Coverage Raw 2021

This could be the wildEST Raw in a long time!

Bianca Belair goes after Charlotte Flair’s Raw Women’s Championship, RKBRO takes on The Street Profits, and two tournament semifinals, all on one night!


  • King of the Ring Semifinals: Jinder Mahal w/ Veer & Shanky VS Xavier Woods w/ Kofi Kingston; Woods wins and advances to Crown Jewel.
  • Austin Theory VS R-Truth; changed to…
  • Austin Theory VS Jeff Hardy; Theory wins.
  • Drew McIntyre & Big E VS The Dirty Dawgs; McIntyre & Big E win.
  • Mansoor VS Cedric Alexander w/ Shelton Benjamin; Mansoor wins.
  • RKBRO VS The Street Profits; RKBRO wins, by disqualification.
  • Finn Balor VS Mace; wins.
  • Queen’s Crown Semifinals: Shayna Baszler VS “Doudrop” Piper Niven; wins and advances to Crown Jewel.
  • Raw Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair VS Bianca Belair; wins and


Charlotte Flair heads to the ring!

Before putting her title on the line, the Raw Women’s Champion opens the show for her last Raw before moving back to SmackDown! Sacramento is a bit torn about The Queen as she gets the mic. She asks where are the balloons and champagne, and why isn’t the roster out here for farewell hugs? Where are her “Thank You, Charlotte” chants? This is her last night on Raw before she is officially drafted to SmackDown, and she has to defend her title against Bianca Belair? A rookie? “Some flash in the pan?” No, seriously, this is crap! Charlotte really thinks there’s a conspiracy here. Number one, Bianca isn’t officially on Raw yet, and then she has another title opportunity at Crown Jewel! And people say Charlotte is entitled?

All Charlotte wants is a ceremony. She hears fans chanting, “You Suck!” and she tells them to sit down, hush and listen. Charlotte uses the “What?” on the fans, then says she just wanted a fitted farewell for the most decorated woman in sports entertainment history! She finds it convenient that Bianca gets this match just before the switch. Talk about favoritism! Bianca couldn’t win two weeks ago, she needs to get her ass to the back of the line! You can’t beat this opportunity! Not this time, not any time! And tonight, Bianca learns how far she still has to go. Bianca may have beaten Bayley and Sasha, but Charlotte is the mountain she can’t climb!

And save the EST stuff for someone who isn’t the GOAT! But speaking of Bianca, here she comes! Fans cheer for the EST as she tells Charlotte, “A conspiracy?” No, this isn’t that. This is just desserts. The way Bianca sees it, she’s done nothing but prove she belongs. She deserves this rematch! And Charlotte wants to bring up two weeks ago? Bianca had Charlotte beat until she got saved by Big Time Becks. But Bianca can’t even believe Charlotte talking like this! She’s throwing a tantrum all for defending her title and leaving Raw. “Baby, it’s okay.” Bianca says she is the EST, and no matter what brand she’s one, she knows she’s the one to watch because she always shines.

Lucky for Charlotte, after tonight, Bianca won’t be Charlotte’s probably because Charlotte no longer goes here. Charlotte’s literally begging for a farewell, so take your time to say good-bye to the title. Bianca has some advice: After Charlotte takes the L, she can dust herself off and hold her head up high. This life brings trials and tribulations, but Charlotte can use that to make her stronger, rougher, tougher and maybe even kinder. Try that one. Bianca’s gonna take the title to Crown Jewel and return to Raw with a belt on each arm! “Now how’s that for a rookie, Charlotte?” Charlotte sucker punches Bianca! The heels come off, but Bianca dodges the boot to torture rack!

Charlotte scrambles away and to the apron but Bianca handspring heel kicks her down! Charlotte is flustered and frustrated, is this just the beginning of a bad night good-bye?


Backstage interview with the New Day.

Kevin Patrick asks Woods about this big opportunity. This is of the utmost importance, Sir Kevin. Woods will be one step behind some of the greatest King of the Ring winners ever! From King Mable to King Ken Shamrock to King BOOKAH! When Woods wins, he’ll be one step closer to fulfilling his destiny. Kofi says we all know how important this is, so that’s why Kofi will watch his back. No repeats of last week where Veer & Shanky get in the way. Martin Luther King had a dream but Woods’ dream is to be a king! All about that crown~!

Woods makes a royal decree here in the “castle” of the Sacramento Kings! And that is that this Thursday, Woods will sit on the crown as King Xavier, first of his name. “HAIL! KING WOODS!” But will the Modern Day Maharaja leave Woods on the outside looking in? We find out, after the break!

King of the Ring Semifinals: Jinder Mahal w/ Veer & Shanky VS Xavier Woods w/ Kofi Kingston!

Raw returns and Jinder makes his entrance, with his minions by his side. The bell rings and Mahal circles with Woods. They tie up, Woods waistlocks but Mahal throws Woods off. Mahal gloats but Woods keeps cool as he circles with Mahal again. They tie up, Mahal powers Woods back but Woods turns things around to have Mahal in the corner. The two get scrappy and the ref has them back off. The two go again, Mahal kicks low and shoves Woods to ropes. Woods boots back, Mahal elbows but Woods drop toeholds Mahal onto ropes! Woods runs to dropkick Mahal in the back! Woods CHOPS and throws hands in the corner, then climbs up. Mahal slips out and gets away.

Woods pursues, throwing haymakers and CHOPS! Woods climbs up another corner now and rains down rights on Mahal. Mahal stops that at 4, runs and runs Woods over with a shoulder! Mahal hits a headlock takeover as his henchmen applaud. Woods endures, fights up, throws body shots and then forearms. Woods runs but Mahal reels him in. Woods breaks free to then ENZIGURI! Woods runs but Mahal scoops, Woods tilt-o-whirls out to a RUSSIAN LEG SWEEP! Fans fire up as Woods runs, slides and basement dropkicks! Cover, TWO! Woods keeps cool as he headlocks, but Mahal powers up to a BIG back suplex!

Mahal stomps Woods, drags him up and CLUBS him down. Mahal JAMS his knee into Woods’ back, then brings him up for a headlock. Woods throws body shots as fans rally but Mahal knees low. Mahal scoops, Woods slips off and rolls him up, TWO! Mahal kicks low again, whips Woods to a corner, but Woods goes up and over to sunset flip! TWO! Mahal runs in but is sent into buckles! Woods runs in but is TOSSED out, and he SMACKS off the steps! Shanky & Veer cheer while Mahal soaks up the heat, and Raw goes to break.

Raw returns again and Mahal clamps onto Woods’s arm, but Woods fights up to a JAWBREAKER! Woods goes to the apron, Mahal drags him up by his hair, and the ref reprimands. Mahal ROCKS Woods with a right, then another! Woods holds onto the rope and he hits back! Woods shoulders in, steps in, but Mahal fireman’s carries to a GUT BUSTER DROP! Cover, TWO! Woods is still in this and Kofi coaches him up. Mahal fires up as he watches Woods rise. Mahal wraps Woods up in the clutch but Woods resists the lift! Woods clubs the arm, throws hands on Mahal, but Mahal scoops for a SIDEWALK SLAM!

Mahal paces and soaks up the heat as he runs, but Woods avoids the knee drop! SUPERKICK! Woods WRECKS Shanky with a dropkick, then goes up the corner! Woods leaps, but into a KALLAS!! Deja vu from last week! Cover, ROPEBREAK!! Woods saves himself and Mahal is furious! Mahal drags Woods up, brings him up and puts him on the top rope. Mahal climbs up behind Woods, Woods fights with elbows and even headbutts! Mahal falls, Woods adjusts, tightrope walk and LIMIT BREAKER ELBOW!! Cover, Woods wins!!

Winner: Xavier Woods, by pinfall (advances to Crown Jewel)

Woods punches his ticket to the finals! He and Kofi go to the throne, and Kofi puts the cape on Woods. Kofi hands the scepter to Woods and Woods says these will be his! Woods holds the scepter to the sky, will Woods truly become King of the Ring when he’s facing The Prince?


Backstage interview with Austin Theory.

What did it mean to him to defeat a former WWE World Champion and one that he looked up to? Yes, he did look up to Jeff Hardy, but then he was looking down at him after he won. Wait, wait, the 24/7 Championship chase comes through! Theory has to duck as Reggie jumps off a road case! Is this serious? Drake Maverick and team go down a hall, but Reggie comes back around, only for R-Truth to get him! Truth outsmarted Reggie, but Theory breaks up his chance to pin the champ! Theory has had enough of this! “Do you know who I am?!” Truth has a theory that Theory is a theorisist. A what?

Truth wants Theory to hold on. This anger and frustration, he wants to take it out in the ring, huh? Oh yeah! In that case, Truth accepts the challenge. On one condition: Theory gets permission from mommy to stay up late! GOTTEE~! Well management made this match, and it’s happening next!

Austin Theory VS R-Truth!

Raw returns and Truth makes his entrance, but he wants the music to cut. “Hey, I made a mistake. That was on me, my bad. I didn’t accept your challenge for R-Truth. I accepted your challenge for R-Truth’s friend.” It’s Jeff Hardy! The Charismatic Enigma is getting a surprise rematch! Will this bait and switch throw Theory off completely? Or will Theory just go 2-0 against the future hall of famer?

Austin Theory VS Jeff Hardy!

The bell rings and the two tie up. Theory powers Hardy to a corner, lets off fast and mocks Hardy’s moves. The fans rally for Hardy as Theory headlocks, but Hardy powers out. Theory runs Hardy over and then mocks the moves again. But Hardy drags Theory into a cradle! TWO, and Theory blocks a kick! Hardy throws hands, Theory avoids the jawbreaker but Hardy rolls Theory up! TWO, and Theory says Hardy was pulling tights! Hardy apologizes, then dropkicks Theory out of the ring! Hardy is on the apron, but Theory blocks his kick to trip Hardy up! Hardy lands hard on the apron, but Theory then drags him out for a DRAPING NECKBREAKER! Hardy is down while Raw goes to break!

Raw returns and Hardy fights the chinlock, only for Theory to snapmare and stomp Hardy down! Theory talks trash to Hardy then jumps, but Hardy avoids the elbow drop! Hardy gets up, gives Theory an atomic drop, then trips him up for the leg splitting leg drop! Basement dropkick then a SPLASH! Cover, TWO! Hardy drags Theory up but Theory kicks back, whips, but Hardy reverses to send Theory out. Hardy builds speed to WRECK Theory with a dropkick! Hardy goes out, runs around the way and leaps off the steps, POETRY IN MOTION! Theory hits barriers and fans fire up with Hardy! The ring count is past 5 but Hardy puts Theory in.

Hardy HOTSHOTS Theory into a drop zone, and fans fire up as Hardy climbs! but Theory trips Hardy up by hitting the ropes! Theory fireman’s carries and spins, A T L! Cover, Theory wins!

Winner: Austin Theory, by pinfall

And that is two-and-oh! Theory even gets another victory selfie to add to his gallery! But Hardy gets up to give Theory a TWIST OF FATE! And he grabs the phone to take a payback selfie! Will Theory still take the momentum from the win and turn it into something big for the Fall?


Drew McIntyre talks with Big E at gorilla position.

About last week… The footage showed that nothing was intentional last week, but McIntyre saw red and of course dropped Big E with a Claymore. To be honest, Big E threw fuel on the fire by tagging in without permission. So maybe tonight they coexist. We know Thursday, they will do what they do. At Crown Jewel, may the best man win. Don’t worry, McIntyre will. But let Big E do what he does: AWWWWWW Sacramento~! Clap for your WWE World CHAMPIOOON~! And FEEL~ the POWER~! Big E heads out first, will he and McIntyre make it work in a rematch with “Big Bob” and DZ?


Sonya Deville talks with Adam Pearce backstage.

They are in agreement that things have to be bigger and better than ever, but then Charlotte Flair walks in. Are they talking about a way to screw her over? No, they were talking about the Raw season premiere next week, not that it is any of her business. And what is she talking about? Well Charlotte wasn’t asked but told to defend her title. And then they let Bianca walk out and disrespect her during her farewell speech! Plus, no champagne, balloons or hugs! She has to defend the title she made relevant! She smells conspiracy! Sonya has Charlotte relax, because this is just all logical sense to have that main event.

Charlotte won’t be replaced by Bianca because she will still be Raw Women’s Champion AND the new face of SmackDown! Forget SmackDown, is Charlotte one moment away from a meltdown?


Drew McIntyre & Big E VS The Dirty Dawgs!

Raw returns as McIntyre makes his entrance, Angela the sword in hand. Then Robert Roode & Dolph Ziggler make theirs. The teams sort out and the world champion starts against The Show-Off. They tie up, go around, and Big E SLAMS Ziggler down. Big E swivels them hips but Ziggler gets up. Ziggler throws hands, swivels his hips, but runs into Big E’s shoulder! Cover, TWO! Big E tags in McIntyre, they mug Ziggler, and then McIntyre TOSSES Ziggler to a corner. McIntyre CHOPS Ziggler and he falls down! McIntyre drags Ziggler up to CHOP him again, dedicating that one to “Big Bob.” Ziggler kicks McIntyre in the leg, rakes his eye, then tags in Roode.

The Dawgs mug McIntyre, Roode bumps him off buckles, then climbs up to rain down fists. Roode shouts, “I’m BIG BOB!” then he hops down to CHOP! Roode whips corner to corner but McIntyre comes back to run him over! “I’m BIG D!” McIntyre dead lifts Roode to a suplex! Cover, TWO! McIntyre wrenches Roode’s arm, tags Big E in, and they mug Roode. Roode kicks back, rakes Big E’s eyes, then headlocks. Big E powers up and out, things speed up, Big E hurdles and CLOBBERS Roode! Big E BLASTS Ziggler off the apron, then drags Roode over to the apron to CLUB away on his chest! Fans fire up as Big E gets back up, for the APRON SPLASH only for Ziggler to save Roode!

Ziggler then aims and runs at Big E, but Big E turns Famouser into a TOSS into the timekeeper’s area! But Roode whips Big E into the steel steps! Fans boo and McIntyre coaches Big E up as Raw goes to break.

Raw returns again and Roode bumps Big E off buckles. Tag to Ziggler and he stomps a mudhole in. The ref counts, Ziggler lets off to argue with him, and Roode chokes Big E! McIntyre protests but Ziggler dropkicks Big E down! Cover, TWO! Ziggler grows annoyed but he taunts Big E then wraps on a chinlock. Ziggler leans on the hold but Big E endures. Ziggler claws at Big E’s eyes, but Big E fights up to his feet! Big E reaches, walks towards his corner, but Ziggler rakes eyes again! Roode distracts the ref from seeing that, Ziggler hits a NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Ziggler scrapes Big E’s face off ropes! The ref counts, Ziggler lets off and tags in Roode.

Roode whips Ziggler in for a SPLASH! Then Ziggler feeds Big E to Roode’s kick and NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Roode does push-up just to show off, then he drags Big E up to tag Ziggler. The Dawgs mug Big E, Ziggler rakes Big E’s eyes again, then climbs up in a corner. Ziggler rains down fists, stops at 7 because he says what happens here, and then he runs corner to corner, to SPLASH! Ziggler waits for Big E to stagger forward, but Big E TOSSES the satellite DDT away! Fans fire up as both men are down, hot tags to Roode and McIntyre! The Scottish Warrior rallies, whips and OVERHEAD Belly2Belly suplexes! Then he clinches Roode for another OVERHEAD Belly2Belly!

Ziggler runs in but he gets an OVERHEAD Belly2Belly! McIntyre dodges Roode to hit a NECKBREAKER! McIntyre kips up, fans fire up, and he corner clotheslines Ziggler for the INVERTED ALABAMA SLAM onto Roode! Fans fire up with McIntyre as he fireman’s carries Roode. Roode scrambles, fights free, and Ziggler goes after Big E! McIntyre and Big E avoid a collision but Ziggler trips Big E and Roode hits a SPINEBUSTER! Cover, TWO! Ziggler tags in, GLORIOUS FAMOUSER!! Cover, TWO!! McIntyre survives but Ziggler coordinates with Roode. Tag to Roode, Ziggler whips Roode and Roode whips Ziggler, but McIntyre dodges the splash! GLASGOW KISS FOR ROODE!

Big E is back on the apron, McIntyre gives him the tag! Big E scoops Roode, for the BIG ENDING! Cover, Big E and McIntyre win!

Winners: Big E & Drew McIntyre, by pinfall

The WWE World Champion has belt and hand raised, but then McIntyre turns him around. The two stare down, but McIntyre offers a handshake. Big E takes it, and both men are fired up for Crown Jewel. But then Big E doesn’t let McIntyre leave first. They get even more fired up! McIntyre says Big E will never be him, but Big E says he doesn’t want to be. We will see who is the better man at Crown Jewel!


The Street Profits are fired up backstage.

Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins are back on Raw, and they’re gonna take it by storm again! It’s like deja vu, because they’re gonna put the division on notice! Ford is excited for Crown Jewel. Are you ready~, ready~, ready~? Live on the WWE Network and Peacock this Thursday. But the biggest match they’re watching is the Raw Tag Team Championships, the fan favorite odd couple, RKBRO VS the Phenomenal AJ Styles & the one who actually puts in the work, Omos! Yeah, Styles is like that kid in the group project who doesn’t do anything but still gets the A. Wait, Ford and Dawkins were “that guy.”

But they aren’t just asking, they’re demanding for the smoke! Wait, it is smoky in here. Styles and Omos walk in and Styles says they were bringing dignity back to the Raw Tag Division, then these two dorks had to show up. Omos says Raw is HIS house. Uh, their house. Styles’ name is there, too. But you’re looking at the next Raw Tag Team Champions. They’ll beat RKBRO at Crown Jewel, making those two a fleeting memory. They gone…! But hey, if the Profits aren’t too beat up from the Street Fight on SmackDown, not that anyone cares about SmackDown here on Monday Night Raw, and maybe if they put a hurting on RKBRO, they can be at the top of the list when facing the new champions, aka Omos & Styles.

Wow, top of the list? HAHAHAHAHAHA! No. They’ll be back to put the entire roster on notice. Because the Profits are up, and #WEWANTTHESMOKE! Bye. Styles points out how it’s weird that they are the Profits, not Prophets. Well, they have no idea what’s coming anyway.


Mansoor VS Cedric Alexander w/ Shelton Benjamin!

Before going 1v1 with The Beacon at Crown Jewel to settle things from last week, the Star of Saudi Arabia shines on his own! Can he overcome PRIMED Alexander to be ready for Mustafa Ali?

Raw returns and The Hurt Business make their entrance. The bell rings, Mansoor and Alexander circle, and Alexander kicks low. Alexander headlocks, Mansoor tries to power out but Alexander holds tight. Mansoor rolls Alexander away, gets around to waistlock but Alexander bucks the O’Conner Roll. Mansoor wheelbarrows and victory rolls to a STANDING MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO! Mansoor CLUBS Alexander, wrenches and whips but Alexander holds ropes. Mansoor CHOPS, whips, but Alexander slides under to pump handle and EXPLODER! Alexander then gets Mansoor up, whips and scoops for a BACKBREAKER!

Mansoor crawls to a corner, Alexander storms over and climbs up to bark in Mansoor’s face while grinding forearms in. Alexander throws body shots, CLUBS Mansoor down, but Mansoor hits back. Alexander DECKS Mansoor and then rains down fists! Cover, TWO! Alexander stays on Mansoor with a rear bearhug and he leans his weight on Mansoor. Alexander drives in elbows, talks some trash, pulls hair and then has a chinlock to stretch Mansoor back. Mansoor endures, fights up as fans rally, and he pries the hold apart, only for Alexander to knee him in the back! Alexander throws body shots but Mansoor throws back elbows.

Alexander reels Mansoor in but Mansoor lands out of the back suplex to boot and ENZIGURI! Mansoor gets up, Alexander throws heavy body shots. Alexander whips, scoops but Mansoor tilt-o-whirls through for a REVERSE DDT! Mansoor fires up, Alexander gets to ropes and Mansoor runs, but Alexander puts him on the apron. Mansoor slingshots in for the NECKBREAKER! Cover, Mansoor wins!

Winner: Mansoor, by pinfall

But here comes Mustafa Ali! “You’ve got to be kidding me. After everything I’ve done to you, you are still coming out here and smiling like some damn fanboy! Honestly, it’s pathetic.” But in Mansoor’s hometown, Ali will finally wipe that stupid smile off Mansoor’s face. And not just Mansoor! No, Ali will wipe the smile off everyone’s face that supports Mansoor. Mansoor tells Ali, “For once in your life, shut the hell up!” Mansoor wants Ali to listen to him now! “I said look at me, you piece of trash!” Mansoor doesn’t have a smile on his face right now. But at Crown Jewel, Mansoor will be grinning ear to ear when he beats Ali senseless!

This Thursday, Mansoor proves to the world that Ali is nothing more than just a pathetic, cowardly excuse for a man! Mansoor then makes it even more clear in Arabic! Ali is stunned to see this fire in Mansoor! Will the Beacon burn in the light of the Star of Saudi Arabia?


Raw holds a dual interview via video with Goldberg and Bobby Lashley.

Separated for obvious reasons, Corey Graves thanks both men for being here tonight. Starting with Goldberg, we heard Lashley’s response to Goldberg’s threats. Goldberg says those weren’t threats. Threats are what someone might do. Goldberg will do what he said he’d do: beat Lashley within an inch of his life, then finish the job. Lashley hops Goldberg realizes that not only is what he saying nonsense, but criminal. Threatening the life of a man on live TV? Lashley could call the authorities and have Goldberg arrested. But that is not how Lashley does business. Goldberg can run his mouth because nothing he says will become reality. Lashley is untouchable!

Lashley promises Crown Jewel goes the same was as SummerSlam, but Goldberg won’t have any family members to fight for him. And speaking of family, how does Goldberg’s son feel about the example his father is setting? Goldberg wants Lashley to choose his words wisely. The more Lashley talks about Goldberg’s family, the more Goldberg will make Lashley suffer. In 72 hours, Lashley’s ass is Goldberg’s, and there’s not a damn thing he can do about it. Well Goldberg must not have been watching last week. You can’t kill the All Mighty! You can only hope to survive!

Lashley wants Goldberg to remember how he dropped to his knees, thanking the heavens for this match. Remember that Thursday when he’ll be begging for forgiveness. Is Lashley finished? And Lashley doesn’t believe his own crap, does he? Lashley says he’ll finish with this: before, Goldberg faced Lashley with restrictions; but No Holds Barred means there’s nothing to stop Lashley from ending Goldberg’s career! Lashley is done here. Goldberg corrects Lashley, and says they’ll be done at Crown Jewel. “Safe travels. Kill ya Thursday, Bobby!” Will either man survive when they can do just about anything to each other?


RKBRO talks backstage.

Matt Riddle is anticipating another great plan this week. He still can’t get over how Randy Orton suckered Omos & Styles during that match last week. Orton could win an Oscar, or even a Kids Choice Award! That was wild because Riddle wasn’t sure if Orton was coming out, but he knew deep down that Orton had a plan all along. For the love of God, Riddle, there was never a plan! Wow, totally believable, and totally Randy. Riddle says at Crown Jewel, they can table top Omos! Always works, dude. And what about The Profits? They say they want the smoke, so Riddle got a ton of ideas.

Orton says if Riddle wants to know the plan, with all his heart, then the plan is to go out and win! then at Crown Jewel, they will go to the ring and what? W-Win? YES. Now one question: Does Riddle want the smoke? Yeah! Then let’s go get it. Nice! The tag champions head out, but will they fire up on the way to Crown Jewel?

RKBRO VS The Street Profits!

Raw returns and the Profits make their entrance. The teams sort out and Riddle starts with Ford. Riddle says he wants the smoke, then he ties up with Ford. Riddle waistlocks, SLAMS Ford, and Ford calls to Dawkins! Riddle gets the ARMBAR, but Ford makes it a cover, TWO! Ford scrambles to ropes and Riddle resets. Fans chant for “R K BRO! R K BRO!” as Riddle and Ford circle. They tie up, Ford waistlocks to a headlock, and he grinds Riddle down. Riddle fights up, but Ford holds tight to the headlock. Riddle powers out, Ford goes up and over and handsprings to show off the agility. Ford mocks the Orton pose, then things speed up as Ford hurdles, hurdles and dropkicks!

Fans fire up as Ford brings Riddle over and tags Dawkins in. The Profits whip then dropkick Riddle down! Then the back suplex SPLASH! Cover, TWO! Dawkins swipes at Orton but he gets away. Tag to Ford, the Profits double suplex but Riddle slips out! Riddle dodges Dawkins, Orton trips Dawkins up and bumps him off the apron! Riddle dumps Ford out, then Riddle goes up and to the apron, PENALTY KICK for Dawkins! SPRINGBOARD FLOATING BRO takes Dawkins down! Ford FLIES in outta nowhere to take out RKBRO! Fans are fired up as all four men are down and Raw goes to break!

Raw returns again and Orton has Ford with a chinlock. Dawkins coaches Ford and he fights up, throws elbows, but Orton knees low. Orton whips Ford to ropes but Ford jumps over for the sunset flip! TWO, and Orton CLOBBERS Ford with a clothesline! Orton tags Riddle in, Riddle gut wrenches Ford and spins around and around and around! Riddle stops at about a dozen rotations then suplexes Ford away! Ford sits up and tries to not see double, but Riddle covers, TWO! Riddle drags Ford up into a chinlock and grinds him down. Ford endures, fights up and throws elbows and body shots. Riddle ROCKS Ford with a forearm, reels him in, and gets him up, but Ford slips out to ENZIGURI!

Both men are down, fans fire up as they crawl, Riddle anchors Ford’s foot, but Ford still fights up to hot tag Dawkins! Dawkins rallies on RKBRO, whips but Riddle reverses, only for Dawkins to hurdle and flying back elbow! Dawkins runs at Riddle to CYCLONE SPLASH! Then he scoops, but Riddle fights the exploder off! Riddle kicks, into a T-BONE BELLY2BELLY! Dawkins gets Riddle up, THE SILENCER! Cover, TWO!! Riddle survives the twisting butterfly but Dawkins drags him back up. Scoop, but Riddle slips out to ripcord FINAL FLASH! Dawkins staggers, Ford tags in. Hot tag to Orton, and The Viper rallies on Ford! Orton dodges Ford to POWERSLAM!

Ford flounders and writhes to the apron but Orton has him through ropes! Orton blows a big kiss to the fans before the DRAPING DDT! Fans fire up with Orton as he hears voices in his head! Ford slowly rises, but Styles & Omos make their entrance. Wait, just Omos? Styles sets up, springboard for the PHENOMENAL FOREARM!

Winners: RKBRO, by disqualification

Omos CLOBBERS Dawkins, then choke grips Riddle for an APRON CHOKE SLAM! Styles has Omos get in the ring with him, and Styles feeds Ford to Omos’ fireman’s carry! Gorilla press for a MOUNTAIN TOP DROP! Styles talks trash right to Orton’s face, “Did you see it coming?!” Omos then waits for Orton to stand back up, and he gives him a COLOSSAL ROUNDHOUSE! The Phenomenal One and the Mountain of a Man are standing tall, but will they be win big at Crown Jewel?



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Andrew’s G1 Climax 31 Day 17 Results & Match Ratings: 10.18.2021

A Block Finals Day! My pick has been Shingo and he’s still got a shot! Who wins A Block!?



A Block Finals Day! My pick has been Shingo and he’s still got a shot! Who wins A Block!?

Alright let’s assess my quick and dirty math on how the top guys can win and get on with the show!

  • Kota Ibushi vs KENTA: Is probably the main event looking at the shake out.
  • For Ibushi to win Block: If Shingo wins, Ibushi needs to win and ZSJ needs to lose or draw.
  • For KENTA to win Block: If Shingo loses & Zack wins, KENTA needs to win. If Zack loses and Shingo Draws, KENTA needs to win.
  • Tomohiro Ishii vs Toru Yano: This will either be right before or right after Intermission probably. Ishii doesn’t really have an angle to win the Block because he lost to both KENTA and Ibushi. I suppose if we go with Suzuki’s old comment of both getting struck by lightning and Ishii wins, then there might be some math there. But Ishii is out regardless of Kevin Kelly’s sus arithmetic.
  • Shingo Takagi vs Yujiro Takahashi: For Shingo to win the Block: He needs to win, Ibushi needs to Lose or Draw, ZSJ needs to Lose or Draw, KENTA is a non-factor because of tie breaker.
  • Zack Sabre Jr vs Tanga Loa: For ZSJ to win Block: He needs to win and KENTA needs to Draw or Lose. ZSJ has tie breakers over everyone else.
  • So KENTA is really the biggest factor on this final day. If KENTA can beat Ibushi that opens things up to however the rest of the day shook out. This is shaping up to be interesting.

Now on to the A Block Finals!


  • Great-O-Khan vs Satoshi Kojima: O-Khan wins via Eliminator @10:25 – ** ½
  • Tomohiro Ishii vs Toru Yano: Yano wins via Blackslide @11:08 – **
  • Yujiro Takahashi w/Pieter vs Shingo Takagi: DOUBLE COUNT OUT / DRAW @13:36 – ***
  • Zack Sabre Jr vs Tanga Loa: Loa wins via Deep Cradle @17:31 – *** ½
  • Kota Ibushi vs KENTA: Ibushi wins via Kamigoye @26:16 – *** ¾



Great-O-Khan vs Satoshi Kojima

Because of Naito’s injury, we are all used to a non-tournament match during A Block. But the fun part here is that O-Khan and Kojima do have a little history this year when the United Empire went against TenCozy.

O-Khan dominates early but Kojima fires up with a Lariat and turns it into an Apron Piledriver, so the great leader of Bread Club is finally starting to put things together. Since O-Khan’s points are counted for, I wouldn’t be surprised if Kojima pulls out an upset here. It would be nice for a non-tournament upset, which could also give Kojima an entrance into next year’s G1 as his swan song.

A few close flashes with calls to the Cozy Lariat, his statue lariat and the crowd rallied behind Kojima…but O-Khan doesn’t fall to a non-G1 participant. One Eliminator later and the replacement matches go 8-0 in favor of the tournament wrestlers. It would’ve been much better if there was a surprised upset or two.

Tomohiro Ishii vs Toru Yano

Yano tries an early sneak attack using the gimmick bag, an extra t-shirt, a few interesting little things. Ishii does his best to fight through the Yano Sublime Master Thief shenanigans but eventually falls victim to a Low Blow into a Backslide.

There were a few interesting moments, but the usual Yano stuff of exposed buckles, Low Blow attempts, Roll Ups and Referee dancing.

Yujiro Takahashi w/Pieter vs Shingo Takagi

Yujiro goes for the attack as Shingo is coming to the ring, but Shingo quickly turns things around and starts murdering Yujiro. Shingo chucks Yujiro to the outside and Pieter tries to distract Shingo instead of the referee. Shingo is having none of Pieter’s coy feminine wiles, he asks her to move, she tries to act cuter and then Shingo brushes her to the side as Yujiro catches him with the pimp cane.

Shingo takes control back, but then Yujiro bites his hand in the classic Yujiro move. Yujiro goes for a Fisherman Buster, but Shingo bites Yujiro’s hand. The referee tries to admonish Shingo, but Shingo points out he wears a mouth guard, so it’s not a full bite. Shingo rallies the crowd, but Yujiro counters and impressively gets Shingo over for the Olympic Slam. It was impressive because Shingo was fighting/sandbagging but Yujiro was determined and it looked a little wonky, but Yuj did it. It’s always interesting when Yujiro puts in effort since he’s not a bad wrestler, just very indifferent.

Last of the Dragon is called for, but blocked. Yujiro goes for a kick, Shingo catches the foot and just pulls Yujiro into the Made in Japan/Last Falconry. Yujiro kicks out, powders to apron, Shingo charges but gets low bridged. The fight goes on out of the ring, but they break at 19 and Yujiro pulls Shingo back out. Noshigami attempt, Yujiro counters, into Pimp Juice, Shingo stops Yujiro, hits the Death Valley Driver on the outside. He tries to slide back in but Yujiro grabs the foot and won’t let go. DOUBLE COUNT OUT!

Shingo’s draw…technically still keeps him alive. If Kota and KENTA go to a no contest, and ZSJ loses, Shingo. If KENTA and Ibushi goes to a Draw…it should be a Triple Threat Match playoff for the Finals winner. Ibushi has the breaker over Shingo, Shingo has the breaker over KENTA, and KENTA would’ve drawn with Ibushi…so I feel like that would be a bonus triple threat match. Though I agree with Chris Charlton’s initial idea, most other tournaments a Double Count Out is counted as a loss for both men, but here it’s a Draw.

Zack Sabre Jr vs Tanga Loa

ZSJ comes out quick realizing he needs to win. Because if he wins he eliminates Shingo and is in a very good place to win the block. Loa reels a little early, and starts to slow things down with a few impactful power moves and Slams. Loa does a great job at keeping it simple to not give ZSJ many chances to catch him unaware or in an awkward position.

Zack has to fire up with a few quick counters tying Loa in the ropes with a Rear Naked Choke, running through, doing the Neck Twister and then taking a second to breathe. A small strike exchange that Zack has the advantage in, results in ZSJ trying to step up on the corner and do the Tornado DDT, but Loa catches him and hits a T-Bone Suplex, followed by a Diving Headbutt. This becomes a much more back and forth match than anyone expected. Sabre tries a Crucifix pin, but Loa rolls and powers through, ZSJ stays attached in an Octopus but Loa reaches the ropes.

Big strike exchange, ZSJ throws everything, but Loa fires and for every 2 or 3 ZSJ strikes, Loa lands a Haymaker that sends the soy boy flying. Zack talks crap, baits Loa into attempting an Enzuigiri, dodges, then goes for the European Clutch. At 2, Loa slides him down, turns it around and sits back deep in a Cradle of his own. ZSJ can’t get out and gets beat! ZSJ is eliminated!

Kota Ibushi vs KENTA

After an early attempt by KENTA to win via a cheeky Count Out, which feels like it was the Bullet Club game plan all day. Ibushi beats that attempt, but then we get the KENTA style of this tournament where he cheats at opportune times and really only removes the turnbuckle pad.

Things play through well as Ibushi powers through the first chairshot, and then stops the next attack and takes the chair from him. Threatens it, but tosses it down and hits a Buzzsaw Kick. However, Ibushi was not above using furniture. He finds a table and we get an interesting moment. He lays out KENTA, puts KENTA on the table, and then one set of legs folds, so it’s awkwardly angled. Ibushi doesn’t care, adjusts his trajectory and pulls off more of a Stuka Splash which just looks rough cause it’s sandwiched almost totally against the guardrail.

We get back in the ring and KENTA lands a flush overhand right, and the aggression appears. We continue to see flashes of NOAH KENTA with the Bullet Club/WWE sprinkles. Green Killer, Diving Lariat and a Double Footstomp put KENTA in the driver’s seat. A fun thread was when KENTA finally drives Ibushi into the exposed turnbuckle, but Ibushi does something no one else has done, and that’s kick out. So KENTA is shocked and starts trying to put more together, but he can’t land Go 2 Sleep.

Ibushi catches the knee, V Trigger, Reverse Kamigoye, and followed with the exposed knee Kamigoye for the win. Conceptually good, execution was a little lacking.

Meme credit to Mathew Sarpraicone

Overall Score: 7.75/10

Well look at that, Kota Ibushi makes history as the first person in G1 history to make 4 consecutive Finals. I’m not happy since that means my pick of Shingo Takagi came just short in second place. I am however happy to see tweets about this match claiming that even Japanese fans are getting tired of Ibushi.

Even though the match was good and the night was generally interesting, I feel running back Ibushi again is boring and lazy booking. Especially since he already has a win over the champion, so he doesn’t need the G1 briefcase for a shot. So he’ll probably lose to Cobb or Okada…and given the two options…Okada makes the most sense. A redemption seeking Rainmaker would draw a crowd for Wrestle Kingdom far more than tweener Gaijin.

Here’s the final standings!

Meme Credit to AJ Balaz

A Block:

  1. Kota Ibushi/ 7-2/ 14 Points – Winner
  2. Shingo Takagi/ 6-2-1 / 13 Points – Eliminated
  3. Zack Sabre Jr/ 6-3 / 12 Points – Eliminated
  4. KENTA/ 6-3/ 12 Points – Eliminated
  5. Toru Yano/ 5-4/ 10 Points – Eliminated
  6. Tomohiro Ishii/ 5-4/ 10 Points – Eliminated
  7. Great-O-Khan/ 4-5 / 8 Points – Eliminated
  8. Tanga Loa/ 3-6/ 6 Points – Eliminated
  9. Yujiro Takahashi/ 2-6-1 / 5 Points – Eliminated
  10. Tetsuya Naito/ 0-9/ 0 Points (Eliminated Injury)

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