Raw is ready for revenge!
What will Raw Women’s Champion, Becky Lynch, have to say about Shayna Baszler’s new bloodthirst? Will Rusev and Humberto Carrillo CRUSH Bobby Lashley and Angel Garza? Will Randy Orton be BROKEN by Matt Hardy?
- Erick Rowan VS Aleister Black; Aleister wins.
- WWE 24/7 Championship Triple Threat: Riddick Moss VS Mojo Rawley VS R-Truth; Moss wins and retains the WWE 24/7 Championship.
- Drew McIntyre VS MVP; McIntyre wins.
- Rusev & Humberto Carrillo VS Bobby Lashley VS Angel Garza w/ Zelina Vega; Lashley & Garza win.
- Kairi Sane w/ Asuka VS Natalya; Kairi wins.
- Ricochet VS Karl Anderson w/ The OC; Ricochet wins.
- Six Man Tag: Buddy Murphy & The Authors of Pain VS Kevin Owens & The Viking Raiders; Kevin & The Viking Raiders win, by disqualification.
PLAY BY PLAY
Raw opens with Randy Orton!
The Viper heads down to the ring slowly as fans all boo and jeer. He gets in the rings as fans chant, “You Suck! You Suck!” Without saying a word, Orton cues footage from last week, when he tried to come out here and explain himself, only to get more boos and jeers. And to then be interrupted by Matt Hardy. Hardy recounted his rivalry and friendship with Edge, and how it sickened us all to see Orton do what he did. In the end, Orton would do the same to Hardy as he did to Edge!
Back in the present, fans only boo and jeer harder after that reminder. Orton takes up a mic to say, “Tonight, I’m supposed to face Matt Hardy in a No Holds Barred match. But after what happened last week, I’m sorry, that’s not going to happen.” Even still, Hardy is trying to get cleared, but given what Orton did to him, “that is not going to happen.” The Hardy Boys are known for jumping off the highest of highs and crashing to the lowest of lows. If Matt were to face Orton tonight- But Matt Hardy walks out! “Stop, stop, stop.” Matt tells Orton that he shouldn’t talk about him. Orton should just confess to why he took away Edge’s second chance. Why did Orton SMASH the surgically repaired neck between two chairs? “What in the Hell is wrong with you, Randy Orton!?”
Hardy can tell Orton doesn’t like it when he’s asked that. That is why Orton made Hardy feel what Edge felt. Orton wants to take all of “this” away from Hardy, but he can’t! No one can! Hardy isn’t ready to call it quits. That is why Hardy is here to fight Orton! To no one’s surprise, the WWE doctors refuse to clear Matt Hardy to compete. But Hardy is a man of his word and he is here. Much like Edge, Hardy has grit. Hardy has no quit, “Matt Hardy will not die.” Knock them down all you want, men like Edge and Hardy always get back up. So while Hardy doesn’t know what his future holds, he knows it won’t be determined on Orton’s terms! Orton says Hardy should’ve just said good-bye while he could still walk!
Hardy gets in the ring and fans chant “DELETE! DELETE!” Orton asks what Hardy’s going to do. Look at him, he’s a sitting duck! What would Hardy do if Orton gave him an RKO right here and now?! Hardy refuses to leave and Orton gives him credit, but no one will ever understand why Orton did what he did! “From the bottom of my heart, I respect you and everything you have done!” But when it comes to Edge, Orton respects Edge, and even loves him as a brother. Fans don’t believe that, and they don’t believe Orton when he apologizes. Orton says he’s sorry, he drops the mic, and he exits the ring. Hardy leaves it at that, but will we ever get a clear explanation for #WhyRKOWhy?
Wait. Orton stops at the ramp and takes off his vest. Hardy grabs a chair in preparation for a fight that’s coming! Fans are freaking out as Orton walks menacingly back to the ring. Hardy dares Orton to finish him, and has the chair at the ready. Fans are divided as Orton slithers up to the apron. Hardy swings, Orton ducks and then Orton hotshots Hardy! The bad neck is hurt! Orton slithers in and watches Hardy as he writhes. Orton is still conflicted about what to do, but he stands as Hardy stands. RKO!! Orton fans want “One More Time!” while Orton looks at the chair. Orton gives Hardy a chair shot! And again! And again! Hardy writhes but now Orton JAMS the chair into his ribs! And again! And again!
Orton shows no mercy even as he backs off. Orton SMACKS Hardy on his back! Hardy gasps and sputters, and Orton drops the chair. Because Orton wants another chair! Now fans boo and jeer as Orton looks to recreate last week. Referees hurry out to stop Orton but he refuses! Orton puts Hardy’s head on one chair, and takes the neck brace off! Referees beg him not to, but Orton raises the chair! But Orton stops himself? Orton is conflicted again, as are the fans. Orton drops the chair and throws the neck brace away. But then Orton gets in to drag Hardy to the apron! Orton throws Hardy to the floor then tosses the top of the steel steps! He brings Hardy to the base, whispers something in Hardy’s ear, and then picks up the top half! Orton stands on top of those, for a CON-STAIR-TO!!
Orton takes a seat in the chair he just used on Hardy. Many fans boo, many others jeer, but many more are just stunned. Referees hurry to check on Hardy while Orton walks away. But then Orton returns!? Orton drags Hardy up, sets him back on the base steps, and pats Hardy on the back. ANOTHER CON-STAIR-TO!! Orton shouts “I’m sorry!” but does he even mean it?!
Erick Rowan VS Aleister Black!
Raw moves from one monster to another as the Redwood Behemoth and his mystery pet head to the ring. But will Big Red soon #FadeToBlack?
The bell rings and Aleister KNEES Rowan! Rowan stays up and throws Aleister to the apron, but Aleister dumps Rowan out. Aleister jumps the sweep and Penalty Kicks! Aleister MOONSAULTS but Rowan gets clear! Rowan comes back to BODY CHECK Aleister! Big Red roars as Raw goes picture in picture.
Rowan puts Aleister in then runs to splash! Cover, TWO! Rowan grins as he stomps Aleister down. Rowan throws big forearms and puts Aleister in a corner. He whips Aleister corner to corner, then corner splashes! Aleister staggers up into a dropkick! Cover, TWO! Rowan drags Aleister back up to ram his knee into Aleister’s back, and use his big hands to wrench Aleister’s neck. Then Rowan shifts to the fist vice! Aleister fights his way up, throws body shots and gets free, only to run into a big elbow! Rowan roars again before circling Aleister. Aleister moves to a corner but Rowan rains down rights! Rowan drags Aleister up again, ump handles and gives Aleister a backbreaker!
Rowan bends Aleister, brings him up into a bearhug, then thrashes Aleister around! Aleister endures, even as Rowan clubs his back. Rowan squeezes tight but fans rally up. Aleister elbows against Rowan but Rowan lifts him up higher. Aleister sunset flips, Rowan stays standing and drops an elbow, but flops when Aleister evades! Rowan gets up to get a ROUNDHOUSE! Aleister grits his teeth as he catches his breath and stands again. Rowan stands to get more kicks as Raw returns to single picture.
Rowan blocks a kick but Aleister uses body shots now. Aleister fires off a strike fest, misses his roundhouse and Rowan shoves, for a pop-up into a POWERSLAM! Cover, TWO! Aleister lives and Rowan is shocked! Rowan drags Aleister around to drop elbow after elbow, then stands Aleister up to put in the corner. Rowan hammers away with haymakers and stomps but the ref backs him off. He drags Aleister to the apron to then swing into barriers! Aleister is down in a heap but Rowan drags him up, to atomic SLAM Aleister into the barrier! Rowan refreshes the count to come back for more.
Fans rally for Aleister as Rowan stands him up. Rowan brings Aleister around, powerbomb lift, but Aleister fights and huricanranas Rowan into the post! Both men are down but fans rally up. The ref’s count reaches 7 but Aleister is in at 8. Aleister goes back out to aim from the apron, MOONSAULT! Direct hit takes out Rowan and almost takes out the cameraman! Aleister puts Rowan back in, boots Rowan away, then fires off more kicks! Rowan catches the clothesline but Aleister elbows out, to KNEE TRIGGER! Cover, TWO!! Rowan survives but Aleister looks to make him pay! Aleister aims, Rowan stands, and Rowan blocks the Black Mass?! Rowan clamps on the claw, Aleister elbows out!
Aleister and Rowan throw clubbing shots, Aleister whips but Rowan reverses. Rowan BOOTS Aleister down, then hauls him up for a POWERBOMB! Cover, TWO!! Rowan dares Aleister to stand again. Aleister does, and the claw clamps on again! But Aleister slips out, BLACK MASS! Rowan flops against ropes in a daze and flounders over to Aleister. BLACK MASS AGAIN!! Cover, Aleister wins!
Winner: Aleister Black, by pinfall
The “caged animal” within Aleister overcomes the twisted zookeeper! Will Aleister be able to free himself from the prison within his soul?
Raw welcomes back The Queen!
Charlotte Flair is here tonight after making quite the impact in Portland! Charlotte goes to the ring, gets some help getting in, and gets a mic. She lets everyone know she was at TakeOver: Portland, and cues up the footage to show everyone who missed it, the very moment she attacked Rhea Ripley from behind. Rhea Ripley is still NXT Women’s Champion, so Charlotte officially decided: “I’ll see you at WrestleMania.” She emphasized the decision with Natural Selection.
Back in the present, Charlotte asks why everyone loves to chant for NXT. No one has an answer. But Charlotte wanted to see why Rhea would even dare show up to Raw and challenge The Queen. Charlotte watched TakeOver and was impressed. And reminisced. The challenges, the growing pains, and the NXT graduating class that built what is officially WWE’s third brand. “So this is what’s bothering me.” The entitlement! The women who didn’t scratch, claw, fall down as many times as Charlotte did to gain the respect NXT has now, they have the audacity to step in Charlotte’s ring and hold up the title Charlotte put on the map?
Charlotte says Rhea is very good, but the saying goes, “Pride comes before the fall.” Charlotte will make sure to humble Rhea at WrestleMania. “Everyone’s the next big thing, until they’re not. WOO~!” The NXT Women’s Champion is on the Mania card for the first time ever! Who makes history by being the first woman to win that title at Mania?
WWE 24/7 Championship Triple Threat: Riddick Moss VS Mojo Rawley VS R-Truth!
Riddick was Mojo’s “lineman” and kept him safe from contenders like R-Truth from getting the title. But the “One True Champion” didn’t expect to be betrayed! Now all three men will settle the score, but who scores a 24/7 touchdown?
WWE 24/7 Championship Triple Threat: Riddick Moss VS Mojo Rawley VS R-Truth!
Riddick was Mojo’s “lineman” and kept him safe from contenders like R-Truth from getting the title. But the “One True Champion” didn’t expect to be betrayed! Now all three men will settle the score, but who scores a 24/7 touchdown?
Raw returns with the bell and Mojo rushes Riddick for a big corner splash! Truth rolls Mojo, TWO! Mojo kicks Truth then runs but Truth splits and calf kicks! Riddick clobbers Truth and bumps him off buckles. Riddick fires off fast hands and fires up! Fans boo Riddick as he drags Truth up for a dead lift clubbing SLAM! Cover, but Mojo drags Riddick off! Mojo throws Riddick HARD into barriers! He goes back to Truth, but Truth ROCKS him with right hands! Mojo shoves, Truth ducks and hits a shoulder tackle! And another! Truth is going John Cena with the spin-out BOMB! And the Five Knuckle Shuffle! Fans cheer as Truth fireman’s carries, but Mojo slips out. Mojo fireman’s carries, for the military press SLAM! But Riddick rolls up Mojo, and wins!!
Winner: Riddick Moss, by pinfall (still WWE 24/7 Champion)
Mojo took his eye off the ball and Riddick scores the win! Riddick runs off, and Mojo takes his frustration out on Truth. Truth kicks back to hit the SCISSOR KICK! Fans echo “What’s Up?!” as Truth heads out. Will Truth get reign 35 before WrestleMania 36?
Raw shares The Wrap’s breaking news!
At the Elimination Chamber PPV in March, there will be a Raw Women’s Championship #1 Contender’s Chamber match! Asuka, Natalya, Liv Morgan, Ruby Riott, Sarah Logan and Shayna Baszler will all compete for a chance at Becky Lynch! Who survives the other five to head to WrestleMania?
Drew McIntyre VS MVP!
The Sexy Scot doesn’t want someone trying to ride his coattails or lead him on a leash. Montel Vontavius Porter tried to do both, and got a Claymore for it! Will McIntyre give MVP another one to drive the point home?
Before the match, McIntyre has the mic to say, “I see everyone’s fired up tonight. That can only mean one thing. There’s only 48 days ’til WrestleMania.” Charlotte already pointed at the sign tonight, so McIntyre wants to go bigger. Let’s all point at the sign together! Use the Claymore Countdown. Three, two, one, POINT! There it is! And now a quick geography lesson. Suplex City is currently in #ClaymoreCountry. And come WrestleMania, “we’re invading Suplex City, demolishing that bitch to the ground, and I am leaving WWE Champion!” Fans like the sound of that!
But ladies and gentlemen, Paul Heyman is here! McIntyre looks around in case Brock Lesnar is lurking. Fans boo Heyman and Heyman waits it out. Heyman gives his introduction, and says if you want the evening to get bigger, then here it is! The reigning, defending, undisputed WWE Heavyweight Champion of the World, BRRROCK! LESNARRR! McIntyre is ready but fans are still booing. Oh, sorry, did McIntyre really think Lesnar would be here tonight? No, no, Heyman just wants everyone in the WWE Universe to know what it’ll sound like after the words, “And still…!” Those words will be said after Lesnar beats Ricochet at Super Showdown, and after Lesnar beats McIntyre at WrestleMania. Heyman points to the sign, too.
McIntyre says that Heyman can say Lesnar’s name over and over. Heyman can say it before the match, during lunch, while he’s getting manicures, and when Lesnar is CRYING after McIntyre kicks his head off at Mania to take the WWE Championship! Heyman says he has respect for McIntyre. The Advocate is not here to debate McIntyre. Heyman admires McIntyre’s talents. But there is a man who is not such a fan. That is McIntyre’s opponent tonight, who has a “legitimate grievance” with McIntyre to settle. So ladies and gentlemen, Heyman presents M! V! P!! MVP finally appears and he has a mic of his own.
“Drew.” Yes? Mr. Heyman has no issue with McIntyre, but MVP has a big issue. As old friends, MVP invited McIntyre to the VIP Lounge and treated him with the respect of an elite level star. They were friends, or so MVP thought. How did McIntyre repay him? Oh McIntyre knows this one: he kicked MVP’s head off! Ha, very funny. But it was a cheap shot. MVP promises to whoop McIntyre and McIntyre will see it coming. Ring the bell. And then MVP sucker punches McIntyre! The bell hasn’t rung, and MVP BOOTS McIntyre in the corner! The ref backs MVP off but McIntyre is furious. Fans cheer for McIntyre as the bell rings and McIntyre BOOTS MVP back!
McIntyre drags MVP up, pulls off the nose tape and puts MVP in a corner for fast hands! The ref counts, but he has to pull McIntyre off MVP! McIntyre whips MVP corner to corner but MVP elbows back. MVP runs but into the FUTURE SHOCK DDT! McIntyre kips right up! McIntyre gets to a corner and fans fire up. The countdown begins again! Three, two, one! CLAYMORE! Cover, McIntyre wins!
Winner: Drew McIntyre, by pinfall
BOOM! The Beast better fortify Suplex City, because the king of Claymore Country is coming to conquer it!
Raw Women’s Champion, Becky Lynch, is here!
The Man isn’t going to stay away, even if she has Shayna Baszler’s teeth marks in her neck. What’s in the bag? We’ll find out when Raw returns from break.
Raw returns and Becky has a mic. “Washington, I’ve been feeling a lot of things over the last week.” Becky came to America to seek her fame and fortune, and she’s come to realize she has no need for fame. But she does have a use for fortune. That brown bag is full of $100 bills! Becky explains to WWE Management that this is her paying now for a fine she’s about to bring on herself when she crosses paths with Baszler! “Consider this a down payment on violence!” Take more if they want, or every penny that she has. Because Becky is warning us all that bad things are going to happen.
Only animals go for the neck. And when they do, it is to weaken their prey before ending them. Becky tells Baszler to look at the face of the longest-reigning Raw Women’s Champion in HISTORY! “Do I look like prey to you?” Becky’s faced a murderer’s row of contenders, from Natalya to Asuka to Charlotte to Sasha Banks to Ronda Rousey, and a few more. She took them down because she had to. But she’s going after Baszler because she wants to. But then Shayna is on the titantron! Just look at Becky, throwing her money around for something she’ll never do.
Shayna explains how this is going to happen: The Queen of Spades is in the Women’s Chamber match. The winner of that match faces Becky at WrestleMania. And the Chamber match is in a cage. Baszler is a cage fighter first. Everything about this is set up perfectly for Shayna to take the title at Mania. Therefore, Baszler will chew through everyone else in that match. But if it makes Becky feel any better, Baszler didn’t plan on biting a piece out of Becky. But she did it anyway. So now, imagine what Baszler does have planned. “I’m going to tear the living sh*t out of you.” Becky will be rooting for her at Elimination Chamber. The Man welcomes the beastly Baszler, but will she regret taking on a ferocious animal head on?
Lana and Lashley meet with Garza and Vega.
And then Charly Caruso comes by to interview both duos. How was it this tag team match came about? Lana had a brilliant idea on Valentine’s Day: What could be better than the two hottest couples on Raw today teaming up against their respective enemies? It is a Raw Double Date! Brilliant, huh? Vega congratulates the newlyweds on their nuptials, but while they’re teaming up, Garza and Vega are a couple of hot people, they are NOT a couple. Same for when Vega had Almas by her side. This is business, money.
Garza wants Vega to stay calm, we all know how beautiful La Muneca is. Garza also assures everyone he is just here for Vega’s business acumen. And there is no woman that can tie down the ladies man. And as cousin Carrillo knows, no man can measure up to Garza. Lashley and Lana still smile, and this “double date” is up next!
Rusev & Humberto Carrillo VS Bobby Lashley VS Angel Garza w/ Zelina Vega!
#HandsomeRusev and the equally debonair Ultimo Ninja are a dynamic duo of their own. Will they be able to ruin this scintillating super team’s first time together?
Raw returns from picture in picture as the teams sort out. Carrillo starts against Lashley and the fans are fired up for “Rusev Day!” Lashley puts Carrillo in a corner and keeps him there. Carrillo slips under and dropkicks back! Carrillo fires off fast hands but Lashley pushes him away. Lashley blocks the whip to reverse, but Carrillo handsprings, into Lashley’s waistlock. Carrillo elbows free and runs, but Lashley hurdles and runs him over with a shoulder! Lashley hushes the fans but Rusev wants after him. The ref keeps Rusev back and Lashley tags Garza. Cousin wrenches cousin’s wrist, but Carrillo handsprings and cartwheels to arm-drag free!
Carrillo runs but Garza swings on him. Carrillo ducks but Garza CHOPS! Vega and Lana are both happy as Garza whips Carrillo corner to corner. Carrillo goes up and leaps, to flying headbutt Garza down! Fans fire up with Carrillo as he runs in, but Garza puts him on the apron. Carrillo CHOPS back, then slingshot arm-drags Garza away! Rusev sees Lashley on the move and intercepts while Carrillo springboard arm-drags Garza! Carrillo kicks and whips Garza but Garza reverses. Carrillo goes up and over but Garza SHOTGUN dropkicks! OFF COME THE PANTS! And he throws them at Rusev! The ref keeps Rusev back but Garza bails out. Garza gets a kiss from a female fan! But Carrillo DIVES! The handsome Humberto grounds the gorgeous Garza as Raw goes to break!
Raw returns as Garza snapmares and KICKS Carrillo! Tag to Lashley and they mug Carrillo. Lana and Vega are still happy as Lashley looms over Carrillo. Lashley drags Carrillo up just to knock him down. Fans rally up but Lashley drags Carrillo around for a gut wrench! Lashley has Carrillo in the Canadian rack, but Carrillo slips out to duck and springboard, only to get caught! But then Carrillo slips out of the lift, ducks and dodges again, only to get caught again! Carrillo sunset flips, Lashley drags him up and whips, but Carrillo somersaults to hot tag Rusev! Garza tags in only to get run over by the Bulgarian Brute! Rusev rallies with clotheslines and a Samoan Drop!
Rusev hits Lashley then corner splashes Garza, to OVERHEAD SUPLEX! Corner splash and another overhead suplex! Cover, but Lashley runs in! Rusev evades, the elbow drop hits Garza! Rusev throws Lashley into a corner to fire off! Garza staggers over to roll Rusev up! TWO!! Rusev kicks, Garza ducks, SUPERKICK! Cover, but Carrillo breaks it! Now Lana and Vega are mad as Carrillo whips Garza. Garza holds ropes, puts Carrillo on the apron, but Carrillo goes up and over as Garza baseball slides. Carrillo runs to FLY! Direct hit takes out Garza! But Lashley SPEARS Carrillo! Rusev RAMS Lashley! Fans are fired up as Rusev glares at Garza.
Rusev puts Garza in and climbs up top. But Lashley anchors a foot and Garza enziguris! Garza hops up top, but Rusev throws body shots to throw Garza down. MACHKA FLYING HEADBUTT! Cover, TWO!! Garza survives but Rusev is firing up more! Rusev shouts, “RUSEV!! CRUSH!!” Stomp and ACCOLADE, but Garza slips out! Rusev mule kicks, scoops but Lashley distracts. MACHKA KICK! Garza rolls Rusev up again, with tights!! Garza and Lashley win!!
Winners: Bobby Lashley & Angel Garza, by pinfall
El Latino steals one from the Bulgarian Brute! So Rusev goes after Garza! Rusev clubs and throws Garza out while Lashley and Lana run away. Will Rusev get revenge on Lashley as part of the Super Showdown Tuwaiq Gauntlet match?
Kairi Sane w/ Asuka VS Natalya!
As we learned, the Empress of Tomorrow and the Queen of Harts will be part of the Raw Women’s Championship Contender’s Elimination Chamber match! But to revisit a Raw from a couple weeks ago, Natty will take on Asuka’s cohort in the Pirate Princess first! Will Natty get payback by proxy?
Before the match, Asuka and Kairi use mics to cutely introduce themselves. “Asuka deeesu~!” “Kairi deeesu~!” Together they are, the Kabuki Warriors! That part was a bit more menacing… But Natty, are you okay after that black eye Asuka gave you? Kairi says they don’t care. “We don’t care!” It become a song. Asuka promises to beat Natty inside the Elimination Chamber and go on to WrestleMania, “E-Z P-Z!” But will it be so easy for Kairi tonight?
The bell rings and Kairi circles with Natty. They tie up, Natty waistlocks and slams Kairi down. Kairi gets up and elbows out. Kairi whips Natty to a corner and CHOPS! Fans cheer and Kairi laughs, but Natty puts her on the apron. Kairi shoulders in, climbs up and leaps over Natty to roll. Kairi does a cat paw dance and tells Natty to “kiss this.” Natty spins but Kairi dodges the discus to pie-face Natty. So Natty SLAPS Kairi! Natty suplexes Kairi up and holds her for 5 before dropping her! Cover, TWO! Natty is after the legs but Kairi resists and crawls to the ropebreak! The ref backs Natty off, and Kairi BACK HANDS Natty down! Kairi covers Natty with one foot while making cat ears, TWO!
Kairi ax kicks Natty while she’s down, and then claws at her face. Fans rally for Natty as Kairi clubs away. Kairi wraps on a chinlock but Natty endures. Natty fights her way up and elbows back, but Kairi throws her down by her hair! Cover, ONE! Coach Asuka keeps giving Kairi tips and Kairi wraps Natty up in a straitjacket stretch. Natty endures again as Kairi pulls back. Natty gets up, Kairi becomes a backpack, but Natty sits down for a backpack stunner! Kairi gets up, clutching the tailbone. She runs into Natty’s elbow, and then her boot. Natty whips, Kairi reverses and sends Natty hard into the buckles! Kairi shows her cat claws and marches the plank, to run back in, to the DISCUS! Cover, TWO!!
Natty drags Kairi up, Alabama lift, but Kairi sunset flips. Cover, TWO, and Kairi leaps, into the arms! Natty has the legs, but Asuka distracts! Natty lets up on the sharpshooter, and Kairi knocks her off the apron! Asuka ROUNDHOUSES Natty while the ref is looking at Kairi! The ring count begins but Natty is still down at 5! Kairi does her cat paw dance as the count rises, it hits 10! Kairi wins!
Winner: Kairi Sane, by count-out
The Kabuki Warriors celebrate their teamwork! But will Natty use the Elimination Chamber match as a way to seek revenge?
Raw returns with Buddy Murphy and The AOP already in the ring.
The disciples have a podium and posters up to praise their Monday Night Messiah. Murphy introduces “the man that single-handedly saved Monday Night Raw,” Seth Rollins! Rollins makes his entrance, and only the disciples applaud as he heads to the ring. Rollins shakes hands with a few fans along the way. He gives his followers greeting hugs and pats on the back before standing at the podium.
“Thank you, Murphy, for the kind introduction, and thank all of you for making me the man I am today!” Rollins says that before we begin, he wants to talk about the word “sermon.” That is not something Rollins came up with, but this is how the powers that be chose to advertise this moment. Rollins just wants to talk to us honestly, but “sermon” does seem appropriate, for what he wants to share is “divine.” He turns to his note cards while fans boo and jeer. “Brothers and sisters, we are gathered here tonight to celebrate progress!” We celebrate the future! We celebrate moving forward in Rollins’ vision! It is all of our vision! Phase 1 encountered resistance, but last week saw the conclusion of it. Fans chant “You Suck!” but Rollins wishes Washington to have some respect.
Rollins says that Phase 1 was complete with the vanquishing of Kevin Owens, Samoa Joe and the Viking Raiders. The four men in the ring proved that through sacrifice, devotion and belief, you can achieve whatever you set your mind to! “But now, the work begins.” Rollins does not take the responsibility as our Monday Night Messiah lightly. Phase 2 will not be easy. Fans still chant “You Suck!” Rollins understands their confusion and pain. Phase 2 will not be easy but it is necessary for “the greater good!” Now it is time for us to seek out the weak, the lesser, and the non-compliant. “We must find the flaws in the system and rehabilitate them, if we can. And eradicate them, if we must.”
Rollins tells his “people” that this is not a promise, or a threat. This comes from his heart. “This is the Gospel.” If there are any WWE Superstars who remain non-compliant, then they will suffer the same fate as the weak Kevin, Joe and Viking Raiders! If you stand int he way of progress, in the way of- Here come the Viking Raiders! Erik & Ivar rush the ring, but the AOP are in their way! Those four behemoths brawl as Rollins and Murphy get away! Murphy runs back in but gets knees from Ivar and Erik! Then the Raiders throw Rezar into a post! And double knee Akam down! Rollins is furious, but he’s not without a piece of the action as Kevin gives Rollins a STUNNER! Phase 2 has begun, but how will it end?
Raw finds Rollins regrouping with his followers backstage.
And Charly Caruso asks him about the sermon going all wrong. Oh~, breaking news~! The only ones that respect Rollins are the men around him. Kevin and the Raiders want to fight? They’ll get a fight against the disciples, TONIGHT!
The OC are here at 100%!
AJ Styles is back in action after that shoulder injury during the Royal Rumble, and he leads his Good Brothers to the ring. The Phenomenal One grabs a mic and says, “That’s right! Feast your eyes! The Phenomenal A! J! Styles is back on Monday Night Raw!” What would WrestleMania season be without him? Luke Gallows says “Uncle Allen” is at his absolute best when the WrestleMania sign is up. They point at the sign! And Karl Anderson says that as far as the OC goes, Styles is the NEW Mr. WrestleMania. Styles says that is the sweetest thing Anderson’s ever said. And being the humble man Styles is, he is the greatest superstar on all the WWE rosters. And of any era.
But there are those who criticize Styles. But Styles says that when he wins the gauntlet match, no one can say anything, except for Styles. And Styles will say, “Who’s next?” It won’t matter who it is, but maybe it’ll be the WWE Champion. It could be Brock Lesnar, Drew McIntyre, Roman Reigns, Ricochet, The Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, Razor Ramon, Diesel, Sting, Hulk Hogan, or even the entire nWo, Too Sweet. When Styles shows his dominance at Super Showdown- Speaking of Super Showdown, here’s Ricochet! The One and Only gets in the ring but Styles won’t let “Little Ricky” respond yet. Styles was just joking about Ricochet being champion. Styles was just being nice. No one believes he’ll ever be world champion. What has Ricochet done to deserve the title match, anyway?
Ricochet says it’s okay, that’s just Styles opinion. But Ricochet says that whether they like it or not, Ricochet earned his title match. At Super Showdown, Ricochet will do the impossible and beat Brock Lesnar! The OC laugh. Oh it’s good to see them in a good mood. Then how about Ricochet proves it in a match with Styles, right now? Fans want to see that but the OC says “Whoa whoa whoa!” Anderson won’t let Styles’ return to Raw be against the non-Good Brother. So if Ricochet wants a fight, and Anderson is the toughest man in the building, he accepts. Will Ricochet prove he’s Super Showdown ready against the Machine Gun?
Ricochet VS Karl Anderson w/ The OC!
The bell rings and Anderson circles with Ricochet. Anderson kicks low then clubs Ricochet. He whips but Ricochet rolls off Anderson’s back. Ricochet somersaults under to handspring back and headscissor Anderson! Then dropkick him down! Anderson bails out, Ricochet builds speed, and FLIES! Direct hit at the ramp! Fans fire up with Ricochet as Styles says that’s not fair because Anderson wasn’t ready! Raw goes picture in picture as Ricochet puts Anderson back in the ring.
Ricochet aims but Gallows distracts. Anderson knocks Ricochet off the apron and distracts the ref, and Styles CLOBBERS Ricochet! The OC uses numbers to their advantage again but the ref realizes what happened. The ref EJECTS Styles and Gallows! Styles and Gallows protest, as does Anderson, but the referee lays down the law. Anderson is alone now as the ring count starts on Ricochet. Anderson fetches Ricochet into the ring and whips him corner to corner hard! Ricochet hits buckles then the mat, and then Anderson rains down rights. Anderson fires up and stalks Ricochet to a corner.
Anderson back suplexes to drop Ricochet high and hard! Cover, TWO! Anderson wraps a chinlock on and grinds Ricochet down. Ricochet endures as Anderson grinds him down. Ricochet fights his way up, but Anderson knees low! Anderson scoops Ricochet for a backbreaker! Cover, TWO! Anderson keeps on Ricochet in the corner with palms to the face! The ref backs Anderson off but he goes after Ricochet with stomps. Anderson drags Ricochet up to snapmare and dig an elbow into Ricochet’s face! The ref counts and Anderson lets up, to then kick Ricochet while he’s down.
Raw returns to single picture as Anderson drags Ricochet up, but Ricochet cradle counters! TWO, and Ricochet tries a school boy, TWO! Anderson ducks a punch to hit a neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Anderson grinds Ricochet down with another chinlock, but fans rally up. Ricochet fights to his feet and throws body shots. Anderson European Uppercuts and whips Ricochet to ropes. Ricochet holds ropes to elbow Anderson away. Ricochet boots Anderson away to somersault shotgun dropkick! Both men are down and fans rally up again. Ricochet and Anderson slowly stand. Ricochet counter punches, bobs ‘n’ weaves with Anderson, then whips, Anderson reverses but Ricochet rallies with clotheslines! Fireman’s carry but Anderson sips out to shove.
Ricochet goes up, out, counter punches and buckle bumps Anderson. Ricochet KICKS Anderson off the buckle! then springboards for the crossbody! But he doesn’t cover there, he hits a standing shooting star! Cover, TWO!! Ricochet drags Anderson to a drop zone to go up top! Ricochet 630, but he has to bail out! Anderson runs in but gets a boot! Ricochet runs, into a SPINE BUSTER! Cover, TWO!! Anderson drags Ricochet up, hangs him up on the ropes, but Ricochet slips off. Anderson standard suplexes but Ricochet lands on his feet! Ricochet SUPERKICKS! And fireman’s carries, to a falling PELE! Cover, Ricochet wins!
Winner: Ricochet, by pinfall
The One and Only conquers the Machine Gun, but can he conquer the Conqueror to shock the world?
Backstage interview with Liv Morgan.
Liv, Ruby Riott and Sarah Logan are all in the Elimination Chamber. Ruby takes credit for everything in Liv’s career. What does Liv say in response? “I was excited as anyone to see one of my closest friends return after battling back an injury. I was just as surprised as everyone else when Ruby Riott appeared.” In that moment, the rush of emotion she felt was one of the best moments of her career. But then it quickly turned into one of the worst as Ruby threw the Riott Squad days away.
Being betrayed by someone who meant that much to you could break anyone. It would’ve broken Liv. But she is not the “puppy on a leash.” Liv found a home in her own skin by looking to the future. And in the future, Liv steps into the Chamber to eliminate Ruby and move on to WrestleMania! Will karma come to make Ruby regret her return?
Six Man Tag: Buddy Murphy & The Authors of Pain VS Kevin Owens & The Viking Raiders!
Phase 2 begins with a huge rematch from the Elimination Tag match a couple weeks ago. Rollins helped his followers win that one, but will it go that way again tonight?
Raw returns again as Murphy starts with Kevin. The bell rings and Kevin dropkicks Murphy right away! Kevin throws hands on Murphy in the corner but the ref backs him off. Fans fire up as Kevin tells the AOP to “SUCK IT!” Kevin fires off more hands on Murphy then bumps him off buckles. Tag to Ivar and Ivar throws big hands. Ivar throws body shots and double chops before he scoops. Murphy slips out and waistlocks but Ivar bucks him off to run him over! Ivar drags Murphy up and puts him in the corner to tag Erik The Viking Raiders ram shoulders into Murphy, then Erik throws knees.
Erik whips Murphy and runs him over! He keeps Murphy from the AOP and brings Murphy back to the corner. Tag to Kevin and Kevin CHOPS Murphy! Kevin throws in knees then CHOPS Murphy again. Kevin whips and runs Murphy over with an elbow! He asks the disciples, “Where’s your little b*tch now?!” The AOP are angry but Kevin drags Murphy away. Kevin throws body shots and tags Erik back in. Erik throws big forearms then tags in Ivar. Ivar rams his shoulders into Murphy then snapmares him down for a fist drop! Ivar grinds his forearm into Murphy’s face before throwing crossface forearms.
Fans rally as Ivar scoops Murphy and tags Erik. Ivar slams Murphy down, then Erik scoop slams Ivar onto Murphy! Cover, TWO! Erik glares at the AOP as he drags Murphy up. Murphy jawbreakers and tags out to Akam! Akam and Erik stare down and start shoving. Erik throws a forearm but Akam returns it, and it’s a barwl! Fans fire up as this gets fast and furious! Erik knees and rocks Akam, then tags in Ivar. The Raiders knee Akam back and forth! The fans fire up as Ivar tags Erik back in. Erik rams his shoulders into Akam then wrenches to a whip. Akam reverses and hits a powerslam! Akam hammers away on Erik but the ref backs him off. Fans duel over AOP as Rezar tags in. They give Erik an atomic KNEE SMASH! Cover, TWO!
Rezar grinds his forearm into Erik’s face but Erik fights back with a body scissors. Rezar smashes Erik then drags him over. Tag to Akam and the AOP mug Erik with big knees to the ribs! The ref backs Rezar off and Akam ROCKS Erik! Akam talks trash as fans chant for Kevin. Akam grinds his boot into Erik but lets up at 4. Tag to Murphy and Murphy mugs Erik. Murphy snapmares Erik to KICK him down! Cover, TWO! Murphy clamps on tight with a chinlock and grinds Erik down. Erik fights his way up and out but Murphy elbows him down. Murphy bumps Erik off buckles then tags in Rezar. Rezar throws big hands then tags in Akam.
Rezar sucker punches Ivar! Kevin avoids the shot, and Erik fights the AOP. The AOP whip but Erik sends Rezar out! Erik rocks Akam, Ace Ten Mao! Fans fire up as Erik and Akam crawl for their corners. Hot tags to Kevin and Murphy! Murphy runs into Kevin’s lariat! And double ax handles! Kevin whips but Murphy kicks him back, only for Kevin to LARIAT! Fans fire up as Kevin drops the senton! Kevin aims but runs into a boot! Raw goes picture in picture as Kevin catches Murphy for a tilt-o-whirl backbreaker! Kevin aims and runs corner to corner, CANNONBALL! Direct hit and fans are fired up! Kevin goes up and up and VADER BOMBS! Cover, TWO!!
Kevin keeps his focus as Murphy survives. Kevin hears the fans chanting, and he whips Murphy for the POP-UP- No! Murphy slips out, elbows back and fires off a strike fest! Kevin avoids the knee to enziguri Murphy! And hit a DDT! Cover, TWO!! Murphy still lives! Kevin heads up top but has to fight Rezar off. And Akam, too! Kevin finishes climbing, but Murphy trips him up! Kevin tumbles down off the top and Murphy tags Rezar. Rezar drags Kevin out to throw him into barriers! And again! Rezar puts Kevin back in the ring and rains down right hands! Rezar sits Kevin up for a neck wrench! Kevin endures and reaches for his partners as Rezar cranks harder.
Kevin fights his way up to his feet, throws body shots, but Rezar hits an STO! Raw returns to single picture as Rezar rains down more hammering fists! The fans boo and the ref backs Rezar off, but Akam tags in. The AOP bring Kevin up to mug with stomps! Akam covers, TWO, and Akam hammers on Kevin more. Akam puts Kevin in the corner to tag in Murphy. Murphy stomps a mudhole into Kevin then backs off to soak up the heat. Kevin SLAPS Murphy. And SUPERKICKS! And SUPERKICKS! Both men are down but fans rally as they crawl for their corners. Murphy drags Kevin to his corner and Rezar tags in. Rezar rains down more furious fists but the ref backs him off.
Rezar drags Kevin up with a guillotine facelock but fans rally. Kevin works towards his corner, but Rezar powers him all the way back! Rezar throws knee after knee then tags Murphy back in. Murphy mugs Kevin more then covers. ONE, but Murphy drags Kevin back up. Kevin ROCKS Murphy with a right! Murphy hits back and we have another brawl! Murphy knees low, elbows then runs, but into a BIG right! Both men are down again and fans fire up. Murphy crawls, tag to Rezar! hot tag to Ivar! The War Bear BOOTS Rezar, scoops and sidewalk slams Akam! BASEMENT SPLASH! Ivar sees Murphy coming, dodges and heel kicks!
Fans fire up as Ivar whips Rezar corner to corner. Rezar reverses but runs into a seated senton! Ivar cartwheel clotheslines Akam! Washington is thunderous as Erik tags in. Ivar corner clotheslines Rezar, Erik adds shotgun knees! Erik picks up Ivar for the human weapon hip attack! Tag to Kevin and Kevin hurries up top, SWANTON BOMB! Cover, TWO!! Rezar survives but fans keep rallying. Kevin watches Rezar rise, kicks, but no stunner! Rezar LARIATS Kevin down! Tag to Murphy and Murphy climbs up top. Murphy leaps, but Kevin gets under. Murphy turns around, into the POP-UP BOMB! Cover but Akam breaks it!
Erik throws Akam out and the Raiders see the AOP together. The Raiders run and DOUBLE DIVE! The four big men wipe out at ringside! Murphy runs in, but gets a STUNNER! But here comes Rollins!! Rollins attacks Kevin!!
Winners: Kevin Owens & The Viking Raiders, by disqualification
The Monday Night Messiah will not let Raw end with Kevin standing tall! Rollins stomps and punches Kevin while he’s down, then takes off the jacket. The AOP throw the Viking Raiders into barriers, then help Rollins beat down Kevin! Murphy joins in for a 4v1, but Rollins grabs himself a mic. “I told you this is what would happen if you stood in the way of progress!” Rollins told Kevin this is what would happen if you resisted Rollins’ “vision.” Kevin has tried to crucify Rollins since day one. So now, they will crucify Kevin! But here come the STREET PROFITS! Kevin’s other allies run down the ramp, and Angelo Dawkins BODY CHECKS Murphy!
Montez Ford climbs up top quick and springboards to crossbody Akam! Dawkins SPEARS Rezar! Rollins goes after the Profits but the Raiders add on. Now Rollins is in a 4v1! Rollins retreats so the AOP and Murphy take the beating in his place! Rollins is again on the stage in anger as Dawkins gives Murphy a SPINE BUSTER! Ivar and Ford are on opposite corners as Murphy and Akam are in the drop zones! Erik gives Rezar to Kevin’s STUNNER, then we get DOUBLE SPLASHES!! The Raw Resistance is stronger than ever! Will this be the alliance needed to deny Rollins his vision?
A pretty good Raw episode, though with a lot I don’t really get. Do we really need a Women’s Elimination Chamber match to determine a Raw Women’s Championship challenger? We all know it’ll be Shayna Baszler in the end. I suppose it does help get a lot in one match, such as the growing feuds of Liv VS Ruby and Asuka VS Natty, but it’s all going to be fodder for Shayna. Are there fans watching now that weren’t watching during Survivor Series? Are there really fans that didn’t see Shayna take the Women’s Champions Triple Threat? This Chamber match seems to be about summarizing Shayna running through the same handful of opponents to establish herself instead of making way for other Chamber matches.
Kairi VS Natty was still a good match, and this could still result in a Women’s Tag Team Championship story along the Road to WrestleMania. I feel like Natty and Beth Phoenix might reunite, and I’m still waiting on Paige giving the Kabuki Warriors payback for the mist. And speaking of payback, after Orton decimates Matt Hardy again, I wouldn’t be surprised if this was a way to give Jeff Hardy his return to Raw. Jeff has had his history with Orton in recent years, and it would be a big story for Raw to have Jeff fight Orton while Edge “recovers” and prepares for WrestleMania.
I’m very disappointed in the handling of the WWE 24/7 Championship tonight. I know WWE, through Mojo Rawley, said they’d take the 24/7 Championship more seriously, but I don’t think they’re taking it seriously. A Triple Threat that gets triple “jobber entrances,” and then it happens so quick with no real segments planned after? Really? Aleister VS Rowan was a great match, but I’m still waiting on the day Aleister and the 24/7 title cross paths. Ricochet had a good filler match with Anderson, and it was a subtle way of reintroducing Styles while also covering for that he might not be 100% yet. Styles will surely be ready in time for Super Showdown, or else they wouldn’t even put him in the gauntlet. Also I just realized the only superstars in that match are from Raw. I guess Fox doesn’t want direct affiliation with Saudi Arabia.
Speaking of those other gauntlet competitors, I actually really liked the crossing of stories in Rusev-Carrillo VS Lashley-Garza. I also expected a moment after where Vega and Lana would argue about why they lost, but maybe that’ll be next week. Still hoping that with Almas back with Super Showdown, there is a stable formed so that Almas and Garza can both be Vega guys. Not sure how that’ll shake out for the WWE Untied States Championship, but it hopefully still becomes part of Elimination Chamber in a Men’s Chamber match.
And while I cringed hard at hearing Rollins was going to “give a sermon,” it was a good set-up for Kevin and his forces to strike. The Six Man main event we got was pretty great, even with Rollins interfering. I was surprised the Profits didn’t join this story sooner, or even before the Viking Raiders, but the Raw Tag Team titles needed to be part of this first, it seems. I wonder if this results in an Elimination Chamber match for the Raw Tag titles, where it is Rollins-Murphy, The AOP, the Viking Raiders, the Profits, Kevin-Joe and The OC in, with the OC being the only team that doesn’t care about Rollins’ vision for Raw and only about being the best team on Raw again. It might not be going that way but something about it makes sense.
My Score: 8/10
Mitchell’s AEW Women’s Title Eliminator Tournament Coverage! (2/28/21)
The finals are so close, we can almost taste it!
AEW is closing in on a Women’s Championship Contender!
AEW Revolution is only one week away and Hikaru Shida still awaits a challenger! Who takes that pivotal step closer to her championship?
- Six Woman Tag: Hikaru Shida, Rin Kadokura & Mei Suruga VS Emi Sakura, Maki Itoh & Veny; Shida, Kadokura & Suruga win.
- Women’s Title Eliminator Tournament, Japanese Finals: Yuka Sakazaki VS Ryo Mizunami; Mizunami wins and advances.
- Women’s Title Eliminator Tournament, US Bracket Semifinal: Thunder Rosa VS Riho; Rosa wins and advances.
PLAY BY PLAY
Six Woman Tag: Hikaru Shida, Rin Kadokura & Mei Suruga VS Emi Sakura, Maki Itoh & Veny!
The Full Metal Warrior jumps into the action alongside #Marvelous and the Biggest Smile in the World to take on the Queen of Wrestling, the Fallen Idol and the Genderless Artist! But will Mei be able to fight properly when Emi-sensei is on the other side of the ring?
Shida and her team offer handshakes, but no one from the other side accepts. And then Maki, Emi and Veny ambush Shida’s team! They knock Mei and Rin out and then mug Shida 3v1! Emi underhooks and Veny helps out, ASSISTED FACEBUSTER! Maki fires up that iron head but Shida avoids the Kokeshi! Shida clubs Maki, bumps her off buckles, and whips her corner to corner. Maki reverses, runs in, and back body blocks! Maki fires up and then runs back in, to climb up. Maki asks, “Who is the cutest in the world? Itoh-chan, desu~!” Maki rains down fists and fires up, but Shida carries her off the corner! Maki fights free and fires off forearms, but Shida pie faces her!
Maki and Shida glare, and Maki fires off more forearms! Shida DECKS Maki with one! Maki gets mad now! She bumps her iron head off buckles, and HEADBUTTS Shida! Maki roars, tells Shida BLEH~, then runs, into a GAMANGIRI! Maki’s head is iron but her face is fragile! Maki tags in Emi, and Rin tags in to clobber her! Rin rallies, pushes Emi down, then hits a DOUBLE STOMP! Emi staggers up into Rin’s shotgun dropkick! Rin goes corner to corner CANNONBALL! Rin drags Emi up, wrenches and wristlocks to then crucifix, but Emi fights free to give Rin BACKBREAKER! And then the BUTTERFLY BACKBREAKER!
Tag to Veny, and Veny kicks Rin around. Veny toys with Rin, gives more kicks, and drags Rin up. Rin throws a forearm but Veny brushes that off. Rin forearms over an dover and over, but Veny just SLAPS Rin down! Veny runs, but Mei trips Veny up! Mei is learning much from Emi-sensei! Rin basement dropkicks Veny against ropes! Rin climbs, Veny stands, missile dropkick knocks Veny down! But Veny rolls through and comes back with a SHOTGUN BOOT! Veny hoists Rin up, blocks the rana counter, but Rin slips out to NORTHERN LIGHTS! Bridging cover, TWO! Veny narrowly escapes but Rin SUPERKICKS! Rin runs, SATELLITE DDT!
Rin and Veny crawl, Mei pushes Shida away to take the hot tag! Mei springboard STOMPS Veny down! Mei full nelsons to the CATTLE MUTILATION! Mei has a high bridge, but Veny gets the ropebreak with a foot! Mei lets Veny go to bring Veny up and whip. Veny reverses, runs in, but Mei boots Veny away! Mei goes up, leaps, but Veny catches Mei and pops her around, only for Mei to wheelbarrow! Veny blocks the victory roll, drags Mei back up, FACEBUSTER! Veny LIONSAULTS, covers, TWO! Mei survives but Veny tags Emi in. Sensei now stomps student around! Emi sucker punches Shida and Rin then brings Mei around for a TOSS!
Mei flounders to a corner, Emi elbows Shida down, and then Emi goes back to Mei. Emi gets the legs, sings and the team echoes it. Emi reels Mei back as Maki sings it loud and proud for her! ROLLING ROMERO as Maki holds out the note! Maki runs and KOKESHIS the surfboard apart! Did she forget Emi was underneath Mei? Emi gets mad at Maki for it, but Maki gets mad at Emi for getting mat at her! Veny tags in to stop all that and then BLASTS Shida’s corner! Veny stands on Mei’s head, digs the heel in, and then drags Mei back up. Mei throws forearms but Veny blocks the suplex! Mei stomps Veny’s foot! And then scoops, only for Veny to scoop back and SLAM Mei down!
Veny drags Mei up, scoops her again and SLAMS her again! Splash down for the cover, TWO! Veny tags Maki, Maki stomps away on Mei. Maki puts Mei through ropes and pulls her back in a rope camel clutch! The ref reprimands, Maki holds on until 4, and then mockingly keeps counting to 8. And then Maki goes after Mei for more stretching! Maki CLUBS Mei on the back, Emi gets a cheap shot in, Maki throws Mei down to cover, TWO! Maki is on the camel clutch again, Rin attacks Maki! Maki ROCKS Rin, stomps Mei, and tags out to Emi. Emi DECKS Rin, hits Shida, and goes back to Mei to throw her down! Emi pulls WAY back on the camel clutch!
Mei endures, Emi pushes Mei away, and then drags her up. Mei breaks free to fake the chops and leg scissor roll Emi! TWO, Mei runs and hops onto Emi’s shoulders for a spinning sunset flip! Emi punches but Mei goes Matrix! Mei runs, Emi spins her to underhook, but Mei fights off the driver to ROCK Emi with a right! Mei reels Emi in, scoop and SLAM! Mei shows her sensei that she has power! Shida pushes Rin aside to tag in from Mei! Shida runs to KNEE Emi in the corner! Maki runs in but Shida scoops her and wedges her above Emi! Veny runs in, Shida kicks Veny and snap suplexes Veny into both Emi and Maki!
Shida sets Emi up on the apron and gets some space. Shida runs back in to KNEE Emi back in! Shida’s fired up and she gets in the ring. Emi stands, Shida runs and reverse wheelbarrows to sunset flip! KNEE DROPS! Cover, TWO! Shida goes to suplex but Emi claws her back! Emi runs, but Shida tilt-o-whirl BACKBREAKERS back! Shida runs but into Emi’s tilt-o-whirl BACKBREAKER! Emi and Shida are forehead to forehead as former teacher and student are evenly matched! But then Mei and Veny get in to boot their respective opponents! Mei and Veny run, and they BOTH get tilt-o-whirl BACKBREAKERS!
Shida and Emi go after each other again with forearms and CHOPS! Shida ROCKS Emi, Emi CHOPS back! They keep going back and forth, Shida gets the edge, and she hammers away on Emi! Shida fires up, reels Emi in, but Emi fights to the dragon sleeper, TWISTING REVERSE DDT! Emi sings, “We Will~, We Will~ Rock You!” Maki sings along as Emi runs in and BODY CHECKS Shida! Emi CHOPS and runs, but into Shida’s KNEE! Maki runs in and gives Shida a TORNADO DDT! But Rin SUPERKICKS Maki! Veny SUPERKICKS Rin! Mei fakes Veny out, springboards and SUPER PUNCHES!
Mei shouts to Shida-senpai! They work together on Emi-sensei, SUPER FOREHEAD POKE! Full nelson and… SUPER FOREHEAD POKE! Shida gives Mei a boost, and Mei hits a SPLASH! Shida brings Emi up to whip but Emi holds the ropes! Mei kicks Emi’s arm from the rope, and whips Emi, only for Emi to crisscross them up! Emi uses Mei to sunset flip Shida, and then she traps them both in some kind of double Bow ‘n’ Arrow stretch! Mei tries to get free, Shida gets the ropebreak! Emi lets go, runs, and BODY CHECKS both of them!
Veny tags in and climbs up top! Veny ARIHARA MOONSAULTS Shida down! And then kips up! Veny swaggers about, slaps Shida and drags her up. Veny puts Shida in, drags her up, but Shida breaks free! Shida dodges a heel kick, Veny deflects the knee, Shida ducks another kick but Veny ducks the enziguri! Veny ripcord lariats but Shida dodges, only to run into the WINDMILL! Emi sets Shida up in a drop zone, VADER ELBOW! Veny goes up, MOONSAULT! Cover, Mei breaks it! Emi kicks Mei and Rin back out and Veny drags Shida up. Veny reels Shida in, fisherman but Shida fights out to roll up. Veny rolls through but Shida ROCKS Veny with that right!!
Shida suplexes, Veny slips out and Veny GERMAN SUPLEXES! Maki HEADBUTTS Shida into Veny’s lift, for a SIT-OUT BOMB! Cover, TWO!?! Shida survives and shocks Veny! Veny climbs up again, Rin intercepts with haymakers! Rin climbs up now, and hits a SUPER STEINER on Veny! Shida gets in as Veny goes to the apron. Shida drags Veny up to bump her off buckles! Shida dead lift SUPERPLEXES! And rolls through, to dead lift suplex! Cover, TWO!! TAMASHI!! Cover, but Maki and Emi break it! Maki and Emi intercept Rin and Mei, but Rin and Mei turn that around! Shida, Rin and Mei throw Emi, Maki and Veny into each other! Mei and Rin crisscross to dropkick Veny and Emi!
Shida drags Veny back up, suplexes, and hits a FALCON ARROW! Cover, TWO!?! Shida is shocked by Veny’s toughness! Shida sits Veny up again, runs and hits the TAMASHI!! Cover, Team Shida wins!
Winners: Hikaru Shida, Rin Kadokura & Mei Suruga, by pinfall
The AEW Women’s World Champion finishes it off! Mei is so happy for her senpai, and the three stand tall. But Emi-sensei attacks! Mei and Rin go after Emi, shove her out, but Maki goes after them! Shida grabs Maki by her pigtails and bumps her off buckles! Shida throws Maki out hard, Emi stomps Maki?! Emi is upset that Maki failed, it seems. But again, Shida stands tall with her team! Will she be standing tall against whoever it is that faces her at Revolution?
Women’s Title Eliminator Tournament, Japanese Finals: Yuka Sakazaki VS Ryo Mizunami!
This is it for the Magical Girl and Aneki! It’s win or go home, so who is heading to the overall tournament finals?!
Ryo again gets impatient with the ref and smacks him on the back again. The two shake hands to show there is sportsmanship. But Ryo’s handshake is so strong, Yuka falls to a knee! Ryo lets go, Yuka shakes her hand out, the bell rings, and the two circle. They tie up, Ryo powers Yuka right to ropes, but lets off as the ref calls for a break. Yuka composes herself again and circles with Ryo. They tie up, Yuka waistlocks, but Ryo pries free and wrenches to a wristlock. Yuka rolls, handsprings, wrenches again and has another wristlock. Ryo pretends to be worried but she body shots then wrenches through to a wristlock.
Ryo clubs away on Yuka’s arm, wrenches it more, and Yuka drops to her knees again. Yuka gets up but Ryo wrenches the wrist again. Yuka endures, Ryo lifts her up by that arm to then drop her down! Ryo keeps on the hand, Yuka fights back up, and Yuka runs to flip and wrangle Ryo down with a keylock! Ryo fights up, Yuka shifts to a facelock then chinlock. Ryo powers up, powers out, but Yuka dropkicks! But Ryo just fires up! Yuka is a bit put off by that, and tries another dropkick! Ryo still stays up! Yuka gets frustrated now and she runs, but Ryo dodges the dropkick to stomp Yuka down! Ryo clubs Yuka, whips her to a corner, but Yuka goes up and over!
Yuka gets around to waistlock, but Ryo elbows. Yuka avoids the elbows and pokes Ryo in the eye! Yuka giggles but Ryo reels her in! Ryo waistlocks but Yuka slips under to roll Ryo up, TWO! Yuka cradles, TWO! Another roll up, TWO! Yuka is frustrated but so is Ryo, and Ryo bails out. Ryo catches her breath but Yuka builds speed to WRECK Ryo with a dropkick! Yuka fires up, Ryo cools off, and Ryo takes her time returning. Yuka waits as Ryo gets in, and Yuka dropkicks the legs out! Yuka clubs away on Ryo, brings Ryo around, but can’t scoop Ryo up! Ryo scoop slams Yuka down! Ryo drags Yuka up, whips her to ropes, and runs her over with a shoulder!
Ryo drags Yuka back up, ROCKS her with a forearm, then scoop slams her again! LEG DROP! Cover, TWO! Ryo keeps cool as she drags Yuka back up. Ryo whips Yuka to a corner, Yuka dodges, and then Yuka runs back in to back elbow! Ryo catches Yuka to RAM her into the corner! Yuka falls but Ryo drags her up into a DEEP camel clutch! Yuka gets one arm free, reaches and gets the ropebreak! Ryo lets go fast, stomps Yuka, then drags her up again. Ryo CHOPS Yuka to a corner, CHOPS again, and then CHOPS and CHOPS and unleashes the machine gun CHOPS! Satoshi Kojima would be proud! Ryo fires up, does a dance, but Yuka ducks and the chop hits buckles!
Yuka kicks from below, but Ryo boots back! Ryo scoops, Yuka slips out and RANAS Ryo to a corner! Yuka runs to SHINING WIZARD! Yuka hops up, leaps, flying elbow! Ryo is down and Yuka brings her back up! Ryo resists the suplex, Yuka clubs her and rolls her to a CALF KILLER!! Ryo endures, reaches around, Yuka twists the foot, but Ryo gets a ropebreak with a hand! Yuka lets go, runs and hits a SLIDING LARIAT at the ropes! Yuka goes to the corner, goes up top, but cartwheels to avoid Ryo! Yuka runs, but into a POWERSLAM! Both women are down because of the bad leg, but Ryo fires up!
Ryo picks Yuka up, but Yuka wheelbarrows, only for Ryo to block the victory roll! WHEELBARROW GERMAN SUPLEX! Ryo runs and CLOBBERS Yuka at ropes! Then hits a ROUGH RYDER! Cover, TWO, but into the katagatami!! Yuka endures the head-and-arm, but Ryo squeezes tight! Yuka fights up, rolls back, and slips free to get Ryo for a TRIANGLE HOLD! Ryo endures and fights up, but she starts to fade! Yuka pulls even tighter, the ref checks on Ryo, but Ryo gets a second wind! Ryo powers up, dead lifts and POWERBOMBS Yuka down! Yuka flounders to a corner while Ryo catches her breath and fires herself up with slaps to her face!
Ryo runs and CLOBBERS Yuka! Yuka ROCKS Ryo, dodges, and ENZIGURIS! Ryo LARIATS right back!! Ryo fires up, Yuka sits up in a daze, and Ryo brings Yuka in for forearms from all sides! Ryo powers up but Yuka ROCKS her back! Yuka fires forearms from all sides, and ROCKS Ryo again! Yuka cravat rolls Ryo to KICK her down! SLIDING LARIAT! Cover, TWO!! Ryo survives but Yuka puts her in a drop zone. Yuka goes to the apron, climbs the ropes, MAGICAL GIRL SPLASH! Cover, TWO!! Ryo survives but Yuka keeps her focus. Yuka goes to the apron again, goes up the ropes again, and hits the MAGICAL GIRL 450, but has to bail out! Ryo catches Yuka for an URENAGE!!
Both women are down, the ref checks on them, but they’re stirring. Ryo fires herself up, she grabs Yuka’s hair, but Yuka grabs Ryo’s ears! Ryo HEADBUTTS Yuka in the chest! Torture rack and- VICTORY ROLL FROM YUKA! TWO, and Yuka RANAS to a cover, TWO!! Yuka runs, into a LARIAT! Cover, but Yuka rolls it over, TWO!! Ryo gets to a corner, runs and SPEARS Yuka! Then drags Yuka up to SHORT ARM LARIAT!! Cover, TWO?!?!?! How did Yuka survive!?! Ryo won’t stop to worry about it, she drags Yuka up to fisherman and DRIVER!! Cover, Ryo wins!!
Winner: Ryo Mizunami, by pinfall (advances to the tournament finals)
And Aneki is heading to Dynamite this Wednesday! But will she be able to go from the Crossroads and to Revolution?
Women’s Title Eliminator Tournament, US Bracket Semifinal: Thunder Rosa VS Riho!
Nyla Rose awaits an opponent for the US Bracket Finals! Will the former NWA Women’s World Champion take one step closer to one of her goals? Or will the inaugural AEW Women’s World Champion end up facing an old foe in the finals?
The bell rings, these two shake hands and then circle. They tie up as fans fire up, and they go around the ring with the collar ‘n’ elbow. Riho wrenches, Rosa wrenches back and then headlocks tight. Riho pries free, headlocks back and hits a takeover. Rosa headscissors, Riho kips out and fans cheer this opening exchange. The two circle, tie up, and Rosa trips Riho to get a facelock. Riho slips out of the facelock but so does Rosa. Rosa drags Riho up to then use a leg to hook Riho and bring her down. Riho fights out of the headscissor, rolls Rosa and runs. Rosa dodges, drops and hurdles, to arm-drag Riho! Riho arm-drags back! Rosa sweeps, covers, Riho goes Matrix to run and basement dropkick!
Fans fire up as Riho drags Rosa back up. Rosa kicks low, reels Riho in and snap suplexes! Una amiga, another snap suplex! Dos amiga, and then she hangs Riho out to dry on ropes! Rosa goes side to side to BOOT Riho down! Cover, TWO! Rosa sits Riho up to throw clubbing elbows, then bumps Riho off buckles. Rosa digs her boot in, lets off as the ref counts, and then CHOPS Riho down! Rosa digs her knee into Riho now, then drags Riho out to a cover, TWO! Rosa keeps cool and brings Riho up for a hanging neckbreaker! And another! Rosa reels Riho into a rack as she hooks a leg! Riho endures but Rosa THROWS Riho over her shoulder! Cover, TWO!
Rosa drags Riho up, bumps her off buckles, then goes corner to corner, only for Riho to dodge! Riho KNEES Rosa, runs and tilt-o-whirls to headscissor Rosa to ropes! Fans fire up, Riho dial sit up, 619 hits! Cover, TWO! Riho runs again, but Rosa catches the crossbody, only for Riho to SATELLITE DDT! Cover, TWO! Riho keeps close, drags Rosa up but Rosa hits back! Rosa EuroUppers, and hits another neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Rosa grows annoyed but she drags Riho around and stomps her. Rosa kicks but Riho just gets mad! Riho gets up and throws heavy forearms! Fans fire up as Rosa throws a heavy body shot and then a boot! Cover, TWO!
Rosa drags Riho around, hooks up a leg, and then goes after arms! It’s a full nelson STF! Riho endures, but Rosa SLAMS her down! Cover, TWO! Riho also gets a foot on the ropes for good measure, but Rosa pulls that away to cover again. TWO, and Rosa grows frustrated. Rosa snapmares Riho, clamps on a dragon sleeper, but Riho fights up! Fans rally, Riho gets up and throws shots to spin around, NORTHERN LIGHTS! Bridging cover, TWO!! Rosa escapes and goes to a corner, but Riho goes to the opposite. Rosa runs in but Riho boots her away! Riho leaps for a FLYING RANA! Riho keeps moving, wheelbarrow, STOMP 182! Fans rally and duel as both women are down!
Riho goes to a corner, climbs up top, and leaps for a BIG crossbody! Cover, TWO!! Riho can’t believe how close that was! Riho drags Rosa up, reels her in, but Rosa blocks the Northern Lights! Rosa clubs away, RAMS Riho into the corner, RAMS her more, then runs corner to corner for an A-LIST LARIAT! And SWINGING METEORA! Rosa isn’t done, she hobbles and then comes back in, to BASEMENT DROPKICK! Cover, TWO!!! Riho survives and Rosa can’t believe it! Rosa vows to end this, and she drags Riho up again. Rosa scoops, Riho fights out and full nelsons! Rosa elbows free of that, fireman’s carries Riho and spins, but Riho fights that, too! SNAP DRAGON SUPLEX!!
Fans fire up as Riho gets back up. Riho staggers but makes her way to a corner. Riho climbs but Rosa SHORYUKENS! Rosa climbs up, clubs Riho, but Riho throws body shots and a headbutt! Rosa is in a Tree of Woe, Riho adjusts, WOE STOMPS! Cover, TWO!! Rosa is still in this but Riho drags her up by her hair. Rosa throws body shots but Riho returns fire! They brawl with slapping palm strikes and heavy forearms! Rosa CHOPS, runs, but Riho CLOBBERS her at ropes! Riho runs but Rosa LARIATS! Cover, TWO!!! Rosa is losing her cool but Riho gets her with a victory roll! TWO, and Riho wheelbarrows again, but Rosa throws her off! Leg hook roll, cradle, ROSA WINS!!
Winner: Thunder Rosa, by pinfall (advances to the US Bracket Finals)
In a blink of an eye, this battle of former champions is over! But Thunder Rosa doesn’t have much time to rest, she’s up against the Native Beast on Monday’s last-minute special! Who makes it through to face Ryo Mizunami on Dynamite?
A very good, very fast hour and change for what ended up not being a B/R Live special. B/R Live went down, this ended up on YouTube where it should’ve been anyway, and here we are. The 3v3 was a pretty fun match, a lot of energy and chaos. I’m a little surprised they didn’t play up Mei being Emi’s current protégé, but I did appreciate that they played to the history between Shida and Emi, and likewise Mei being Shida’s “kouhai,” or “junior.” Everyone got to shine, Maki is again a very great character, but naturally Shida wins for her team. Shida needs momentum going into Revolution or else it’ll all be with her challenger.
The Japanese Bracket Final was a great match, though I’m a touch surprised that Ryo won. I suppose it makes some sense, she is a very strong opponent both physically and overall. She’s got a great character, and is a strong contender, but something tells me it’ll be the American finalist that goes to Revolution. Rosa VS Riho was great stuff, fast paced and Riho was not as clunky as last week. But in the end, Rosa wins, a little surprising to me as I thought we’d get a rematch of Riho VS Nyla Rose from over a year ago. Rosa’s story of the goals she’s after is still in play, but Rosa VS Nyla could go either way. Rosa or Nyla facing Shida at Revolution seem the more likely to me, and Nyla VS Shida in a rematch from Double or Nothing 2020 seems even likelier.
My Score: 8.4/10
Mitchell’s NJPW Castle Attack Results & Report! (2/28/21)
There’s gold in the Castle Attack!
Will there no longer be a NJPW Double Champion?
NJPW is not done in Osaka just yet! And Tetsuya Naito will never be done with the IWGP Intercontinental Championship, IF he can take it from Kota Ibushi! Will Naito deny the Golden Star God’s will to unify the belts?
- The United Empire VS Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan; Kojima & Tenzan win.
- Six Man Tag: Chaos VS Bullet Club; Chaos wins.
- IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championships: Guerrillas of Destiny VS Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI; Guerrillas of Destiny win and retain the titles.
- NEVER Openweight Championship: Hiroshi Tanahashi VS Great-O-Khan; Tanahashi wins and retains the title.
- IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship Triple Threat: BUSHI VS El Phantasmo VS El Desperado; Desperado wins and is the new IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion.
- IWGP Intercontinental Championship: Kota Ibushi VS Tetsuya Naito; Ibushi wins and retains the title.
PLAY BY PLAY
The United Empire VS Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan!
Will Ospreay & Jeff Cobb already defeated the King of Cozy and Ikari no Mogyu yesterday in a Six Man Tag, but it seems the war continues! With the Dominator getting ready to face The Ace, will the Assassin and Hawaiian Hulk win again?
The bell rings and the Empire attacks! They throw Tenzan and Kojima out, Ospreay is after Kojima with forearms and elbows while Cobb chokes Tenzan on railing! The Empire whips Tenzan and Kojima at each other and the two collide! Ospreay goes into the ring, Cobb sets Tenzan and Kojima up, but as Ospreay slingshots, Tenzan and Kojima fight free! Ospreay PLANCHAS Cobb! Kojima attacks Ospreay, Tenzan adds on, and they put Ospreay in the ring. Kojima and Tenzan start throwing forearms, Ospreay pinballs between them, and Kojima uses the Mongolian Chops! Kojima scoops and slams Ospreay, Tenzan runs and Kojima slingshots, elbow drop falling headbutt combo! Cover, TWO!
Kojima clubs and puts Ospreay in a corner. Kojima unleashes the machine gun CHOPS! Cobb runs in but Kojima adds him to the machine gun CHOPS! Cobb turns things around on Kojima, but Kojima dodges and Cobb CHOPS Ospreay! Kojima then puts Cobb back in the corner for more machine gun CHOPS! Kojima pushes Cobb out of the way and machine gun CHOPS Ospreay! Kojima whips Ospreay corner to corner, forearms, and fires up! Kojima climbs the corner but Cobb drags him off with a military press! But Kojima slips out to hit a DDT! Fans fire up as Kojima goes after Ospreay with haymakers and CHOPS! Kojima whips, Ospreay dodges to BOOT Tenzan!
Ospreay elbows Kojima then leaps for PIP PIP CHEERIO! Cover, TWO! Tag to Cobb and the Empire drags Kojima up to double whip. Cobb runs Kojima over, sits him up, Ospreay Penalty Kicks! Cover, TWO! Ospreay DECKS Tenzan while Cobb drags Kojima up. Cobb headbutts Kojima to a corner, CHOPS him now, and CHOPS, and CHOPS, and fires off his own machine gun CHOPS! Cobb whips corner to corner, runs in and forearm smashes! Cobb throws Kojima down, covers, TWO! Cobb drags Kojima up and throws a big forearm! Tag to Ospreay, Ospreay climbs and Cobb has Kojima on the ropes, for draping double stomps!
Ospreay runs to dropkick Tenzan off the apron, then he runs to drop knees on Kojima! Cover, TWO! Ospreay keeps his focus as he looms over Kojima. Fans rally up, Kojima throws body shots but Ospreay hits Kojima down low! Ospreay powerbomb lifts but Kojima fights out to COZY CUTTER! Both men are down but fans rally up! Kojima hurries for his corner, hot tag to Tenzan! Tenzan runs Ospreay over, DECKS Cobb, and then fires up! Tenzan wants to Mongolian Chop but can’t so he kicks Ospreay and headbutts him to the corner. Tenzan regular CHOPS, whips corner to corner, then runs in to corner splash! Tenzan calls his shot, and he gets Ospreay up and over with a suplex! Cover, TWO!
Tenzan stomps Ospreay, headbutts him more, but Ospreay throws forearms. Tenzan forearms back, and the two go back and forth! Tenzan kicks low, wants to Mongolian but he hesitates. Ospreay mule kicks in that opening! Ospreay whips corner to corner, runs in but Tenzan puts him up and out! Ospreay ROCKS Tenzan with a forearm, springboards, PIP PIP CHEERIO! Tag to Cobb and he runs corner to corner at Tenzan, for a LEAPING back elbow! Cobb reels Tenzan in but Tenzan fights off the back suplex. Tenzan headbutts but Cobb JABS! Cobb runs but Tenzan WINDMILLS!
Tag to Kojima and he DECKS Ospreay before bringing Cobb up. Kojima suplexes for a BRAINBUSTER! Cover, TWO! Fans fire up with Kojima but Ospreay attacks from behind! Ospreay fires off forearms but Kojima swats him away! Kojima runs, Ospreay dodges and Cobb elbows Kojima at ropes! The Empire combines, tornado ENZIGURI! Cobb lifts Kojima up, RAMS him to a corner, and Ospreay DECKS Tenzan to then run side to side and BOOT Kojima! Ospreay feeds Kojima to Cobb’s ATHLETIC PLEX! Cover, but Tenzan breaks it! Fans fire up as Ospreay stomps Tenzan. Ospreay drags Tenzan up and Cobb gives him Mongolian Chops!
Cobb turns Tenzan around, Ospreay uses the Mongolian Chops! Back to Cobb for more Mongolian Chops! Ospreay and Cobb keep going back and forth hitting Tenzan with his old signature and Tenzan falls! Fans rally up for Tenzan but Ospreay slaps him around. Tenzan USES MONGOLIAN CHOPS! Isn’t he banned from doing that!? The ref doesn’t call a disqualification, though, because it isn’t outright illegal! Let’s just say Tenzan is “stealing” it from Great-O-Khan! Tenzan gives Mongolian Chops to Cobb over and over, until Cobb falls! Kojima gets in, he and Tenzan coordinate to double whip Cobb, then hit the 3D! Cover, but Ospreay breaks it!
Ospreay runs into Tenzan’s SIDE EFFECT! Kojima powers up the arm and runs at Cobb, but Cobb SUPERKICKS! Cobb scoops Kojima, for a TOUR- NO! Kojima slips out, and COZY LARIATS Cobb! Cover, Kojima & Tenzan win!!
Winners: Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan, by pinfall
If Ospreay & Cobb are the Empire, just call Kojima & Tenzan the Resistance! Will they continue to defy the United Empire and deny them their desire to take over NJPW? Or will the Dominator have something to say about Tenzan using those Mongolian Chops?
Six Man Tag: Chaos VS Bullet Club!
The Rainmaker, and Mr. KOPW 2021 beat the King of Darkness and Crown Jewel 1v1, but the Stone Pitbull was made to Breathe with the Switchblade! Will Tomohiro Ishii redeem himself against Jay White? Or will Kazuchika Okada and Toru Yano finally see that Everything Is Evil?
White wants Ishii to stay back while he shows off the muscles. Bullet Club then Low Sweets, and Ishii steps up. White is surprised he wants him again after losing yesterday. But White decides to start, just to tag out to Chase. White mockingly claps to rally fans, and Chase circles with Ishii. They tie up, Chase headlocks, Ishii powers out but Chase throws forearms. Chase fires off more forearms but Ishii doesn’t budge. Ishii swings, Chase dodges, and Chase collides with Ishii! Ishii’s ribs bother him, and White strikes! The ref reprimands but Evil gets in and he hits the Chaos corner! Chase and White stomp Ishii but the ref reprimands and White backs off.
Chase tags White, they mug Ishii, and then Yano gets in only for Chase to knock him down. White digs his boots into Ishii in a corner while Chase grinds Yano down in the other. Evil is after Okada on the outside while White and Chase whip Yano and Ishii. Yano and Ishii reverses, White and Chase collide! Ishii and Yano run White and Chase over! Okada whips Evil into railing! Ishii drags White up by his hair, CHOPS him to a corner, and then CHOPS him again! Ishii fires off forearms, the ref counts and Ishii lets off at 3. White rams into Ishii but Ishii tries to suplex. White knees low, whips Ishii but Ishii stops at the corner. Ishii whips, White reverses and Ishii hits the corner hard!
Gedo cheers while White drags Ishii up. Evil and Chase mug and stomp the other Chaos members, and then White throws Ishii out. White distracts the ref so that Gedo and Dick Togo can mug Ishii! Dick holds Ishii open so Gedo can mule kick him in the ribs! The ref sees Dick stomp Ishii and reprimands him. Dick backs off, Chase drags Ishii up and in for White, and White covers. ONE, but White covers again! TWO, and White tries again, TWO!! Bullet Club argues the count but White stomps Ishii back down. Only Gedo cheers as White tags Evil in. Fans rally for Ishii but Evil sits Ishii up. Ishii hits back with forearms but Evil scoops and slams him! Cocky cover, ONE!
Evil argues with the ref but then he stomps Ishii. Tag to Chase and Chase stomps Ishii before standing him up. Chase reels Ishii into a cobra twist! White mocks the fans rallying, and then the Bullet Club creates the cobra twist chain! Chaos protests but Bullet Club lets go before the ref sees. Chase tags White and they stop Ishii from getting away. They mug Ishii, but Ishii just gets mad! White rakes Ishii’s eyes, then tags Evil. Evil DECKS Okada and Yano, White digs his boots into Ishii, and then they both drag Ishii up. They mug Ishii, going after his ribs with forearms. Ishii boots White and elbows Evil away! Ishii runs White over, and drop toeholds Evil onto him!
Chase runs in but into a GERMAN SUPLEX! Fans fire up but Ishii clutches his bad ribs. Ishii crawls, and hot tags Yano! And Yano goes to the corner pad! That’s one undone, but Evil runs in! Yano dodges Evil, Evil stops himself from hitting bare buckles, and Yano tosses the pad to Dick! The ref argues with Dick but Evil kicks at Yano! Evil whips, Yano holds ropes, but Gedo swipes at him! The ref reprimands Gedo but Yano shoves Evil into him! Yano SLAPS Evil, then powers up with YTR, and dodges Evil’s ambush! Yano SLAPS Evil again, then whips him to the bare corner! Dick puts the pad back to save Evil!
Yano runs in, Evil dodges and Dick takes the pad away! Yano runs into bare buckles! Evil tags Chase and Chase stomps Yano. Chase throws a strike fest, runs, but Yano grabs hair! Chase breaks free, kicks low, and runs, into an atomic drop! Fans rally and Yano tags in Okada! Okada throws forearms on Chase, Chase kicks low and runs, but into Okada’s BOOT! Fans fire up and Okada reels Chase in for a gut wrench. Chase fights that, then bell claps and neckbreakers Okada down! Cover, TWO! Chase keeps his cool as he takes aim. BANG, and Chase reels Okada in. yano grabs Chase and throws him down! Evil runs Yano over, Ishii runs Evil over!
White bobs ‘n’ weaves with Ishii, reels him in, but Ishii goes to suplex! White slips out of that, wrenches, but has to duck Ishii’s clothesline! White throws a knee to the bad ribs! But Ishii still suplexes White! Ishii SWATS and ROCKS Chase, but Chase LARIATS! Chase JEWEL TRIGGERS Okada, but Okada avoids the Jewel Heist to put on the MONEY CLIP!! Chase is fading fast as Okada squeezes tight! Chase taps, Chaos wins!!
Winners: Chaos, by submission
The Rainmaker shoots down the Bullet Club and stands tall with his friends! But things are far from through between White and Ishii, will they battle again come the New Japan Cup? Will Okada rise up again and head back for the mountaintop?
IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championships: Guerrillas of Destiny VS Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI!
These two teams faced off in separate 1v1 matches and went 1-1! Now the tiebreaker is for the gold, and could go either way! Will GoD still reign? Or will Chaos #TurnItAllAround?
The introductions are made, the heavyweight tag titles are raised, GoD Low Sweets, but Chaos attacks them first!
Goto throws Loa out while Hashi is after Tama! Hashi elbows Tama, the bell rings, Goto and Hashi double whip. Goto kicks Tama, wrenches him down, and Hashi leap frogs to stomp Tama! Goto Penalty Kicks, Hashi mule kicks! Loa gets in, he gets double kicks and a double whip, for a double shoulder tackle! Then the hip toss senton! Fans cheer as Hashi goes out after Jado! Goto flanks Jado and they put him in the ring! Chaos hammers away on Jado’s back! Jado bails out, but GoD attacks Chaos back! Tama headbutts Hashi, Loa ROCKS Goto, and GoD whips Chaos, only for Goto to reverse! Loa runs Hashi over, Tama dodges Goto, and GoD double dropkick Goto out!
Loa drags Hashi up and reels him in for a POWERBOMB! The ref checks on Hashi, that bomb really rocked him! Loa toys with Hashi, doing the hand check like the ref would. The ref has Loa back off but Loa tags Tama in. Tama rains down hands on Hashi, then paces around. Fans rally for Hashi and Tama gets annoyed. Loa shouts for Hashi to show the fighting spirit! Tama drops an elbow! Hashi finally stirs, Tama drags Hashi up and fans rally again. Hashi fires forearms off on Tama! Tama hits low, headbutts hard and Hashi goes down. Tag to Loa, Tama stomps Hashi around and Loa slingshot sentons! Tama slingshot sentons, too, and Loa covers, TWO!
Fans fire up for Hashi and Loa mockingly applauds. Loa brings Hashi up but Hashi fires off forearms! Loa claps, eggs Hashi on, and Hashi throws more forearms. Loa ROCKS Hashi with one, then ROCKS him again! Loa still eggs Hashi on and he whips corner to corner. Hashi comes back but Loa leaps over the basement dropkick! Loa says he learned this tricks from last time! But Hashi still gets the spinning mule kick! Hashi crawls to hot tag Goto! Goto rallies on Loa with big shoulders and elbows. Loa blocks the hip toss, body shots and runs, but Goto follows to clothesline Loa down! Tama runs in but Goto kicks him to snap suplex him onto Loa! Goto drops an elbow! Cover, TWO!
Fans rally and Goto drags Loa up to fireman’s carry. Loa fights free, kicks low and knees to then enziguri! Goto staggers and Loa grins. Loa runs, Goto and Loa collide with clotheslines! Neither man falls and Loa eggs Goto on. They collide again with clotheslines, and they both egg each other on! Goto and Loa run, COLLIDE, and both men fall to the mat! Fans rally, both men head for their corners, hot tags to Tama and Hashi! Hashi rallies with elbows and shoulders, Tama reverses the whip but Hashi dodges to HEADHUNTER! Fans fire up with Hashi and he runs corner to corner, but Tama dodges!
Tama fires off fists, whips Hashi corner to corner, but Hashi comes back to LARIAT! Cover, TWO! Hashi keeps his cool and he drags Tama up. Hashi reels Tama in, but Tama slips out of the bomb! Tama gets around to dragon sleeper and TONGAN TWIST! Cover, TWO! Hashi survives but Loa gets in. GoD drags Hashi up and they throw body shots, uppercuts, and the neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Tama is frustrated but he and Loa drag Hashi back up again. Tama reels Hashi in, Hashi fights back, and he throws hands on them both! Loa gets around, GoD hits the BACK SUPLEX NECKBREAKER! Cover, but Goto breaks it!
Loa goes after Goto, Tama adds on, they give Goto GUERRILLA WARFARE! Jado calls for Magic Killer and GoD drags Hashi up. Fans rally, but GoD still hits MAGIC KILLER! Cover, TWO!?! Hashi survives and Tama can’t believe it! Jado calls for Super Bomb so Loa drags Hashi up. Loa RAMS Hashi into a corner, Tama runs in to leap but Hashi dodges the splash! Loa kicks Hashi, gets him up, but Hashi RANAS Loa away! Tama fireman’s carries Hashi for a FLAPJACK! Tama shouts, “Why don’t you just die, Hashi?!” Tama stomps away on Hashi, fans rally up but Tama and Loa coordinate. Loa and Tama climb opposite corners, Loa leaps for the FALLING HEADBUTT, but FLOPS when Hashi moves! And Goto shoves Tama off the top! Fans rally up, Hashi crawls over, and hot tags Goto in!
Goto fires up, and he hits a corner clothesline on Loa! Then one on Tama! Then on Loa! Back to Tama! Jado gets on the apron but Goto DECKS him! GoD goes after Goto together, and double whip him to ropes. But Goto DOUBLE LARIATS GoD first! Goto hits MURAMASA on Tama, to the BULLDOG! Cover, Loa breaks it! Hashi goes after Loa, whips him to a corner, and then runs in to clothesline! Hashi reels Loa in, Goto helps out, GOTO BUSTER! Tama staggers into a fireman’s carry but fights out! Hashi still SUPERKICKS Tama! Chaos coordinates, G Y R!! Cover, TWO!?! Tama survives but Goto keeps focus. Goto and Hashi drag Tama back up again and Goto dragon sleepers.
Hashi gets legs but Loa CHOPS and GERMAN SUPLEXES Hashi! Goto DECKS Loa but Tama DECKS Goto! Tama drags Goto up and reels him in. Loa helps out but Hashi returns the GERMAN SUPLEX! Tama SUPER PUNCHES Hashi, but Goto fireman’s carries and USHIGOROSHIS Tama! Loa scoops Goto for a POWERSLAM! All four men are down and fans fire up! Jado coaches GoD while they and Chaos stir. Hashi and Loa rise first, and Hashi fires off forearms! Loa eggs Hashi on, Hashi hits more and more, but Loa ROCKS him with one! And ROCKS him and ROCKS him, but Hashi staggers about!
Loa says “I bring out the fighting spirit because you suck!” Hashi dodges his haymaker to BACKSTABBER! Hashi fires up, fans rally for him and Goto as Goto and Tama stagger to their feet. Goto runs corner to corner but Tama does, too! Goto denies Gun Stun, fireman’s carries, but Tama fights out! Tama shoves, Goto dodges, Tmama dodges and redirects but has to run from Goto! Goto follows, Tama dodges and hurdles, Goto spins but into a leaping facelock! Goto powers through to a fireman’s carry! Hashi SUPERKICKS, Goto POWERSLAMS!! Cover, TWO?!?! Tama survives!?!
Goto drags Tama back up, dragon sleepers, but Loa has a title belt! Hashi dodges that attack, throws Loa out, but Tama snapmares Goto! Jaod KENDO SMACKS and Tama GUN STUNS!! Cover, GoD wins!!
Winners: Guerrillas of Destiny, by pinfall (still IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Champions)
Chaos forgot Jado is the insurance policy! But there’s nothing they can do about it now! GoD holds onto the gold, but will they make it through the Spring if Chaos came this close?
NEVER Openweight Championship: Hiroshi Tanahashi VS Great-O-Khan!
The Once in a Century Talent took this title off the Dragon, Shingo Takagi, in an epic battle! But now the Dominator wants to conquer the NEVER division in the name of the United Empire! Will Khan be able to trump the Ace with his iron hand?
The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and after Tanahashi shows off the muscles, the battle for dominance begins!
Fans rally already with “Let’s Go, Ace!” Tanahashi rushes Khan, Khan dodges and clamps on the claw, but Tanahashi slips free! Tanahashi full nelsons, Khan elbows free but Tanahashi blocks the boot! Khan clamps the claw on anyway, but Tanahashi breaks free again. Tanahashi dodges the Mongolian Chop and dropkicks a leg out! Fans cheer as Tanahashi watches Khan. Khan bails out, fans rally “Let’s Go, Ace!” but Khan taunts Yota Tsuji, the Young Lion Tanahashi has been mentoring. Tanahashi goes out to reinforce Tsuji and has him step aside. Khan sucker punches Tanahashi then whips Tanahashi into railing! And then Khan gives Tanahashi SNAKE EYES off the apron!
Khan stands on Tanahashi and mockingly asks what’s wrong. Fans still rally for Tanahashi as Khan drags him up and puts him in a full nelson. Khan is telling Tsuji to hit Tanahashi!? Tsuji seems tempted to make a name for himself, but Tanahashi fights free, only for Khan to RAM Tanahashi into the railing! Khan puts Tanahashi in, has a cocky cover, ONE! Fans rally for Tanahashi again but Khan drags Tanahashi around to dead lift him in a gut wrench. Khan carries Tanahashi around before hitting the gut wrench suplex! Cover, TWO! Khan grabs a leg and stomps the knee, to then get a standing kneebar!
Tanahashi endures, fights around, but Khan drags him from ropes for a proper KNEEBAR! Tanahashi manages to roll and get the ropebreak! Khan lets go at 4, paces about, and he drags Tanahashi up. Khan waistlocks and lifts Tanahashi to RAM him into the corner! Khan makes sure Tsuji watches as he sits on Tanahashi in the corner! The ref reprimands, Khan stands up at 4, but then grabs Tanahashi’s arms to pull them back! The ref counts again and Khan lets off at 4. Khan brings Tanahashi around to cover, TWO! Khan grows annoyed and he mocks the fans that clap, “Let’s Go, Ace!” Khan brings Tanahashi up but Tanahashi fires off forearms!
Tanahashi blocks the kick but Khan HELL STAB uppercuts! Khan drags Tanahashi up to knee low and whip to ropes. Tanahashi comes back with flying forearms! Fans fire up with Tanahashi and he throws forearms and body shots on Khan! Khan staggers, Tanahashi throws EuroUppers, and then Tanahashi scoop slams Khan to a drop zone! Tanahashi hops up, and hits the second rope somersault senton! Cover, TWO! Tanahashi keeps his cool, fans rally up, and Tanahashi runs corner to corner. Khan boots but Tanahashi blocks to DRAGON SCREW! Tanahashi holds on to GROUND DRAGON SCREW! Khan clutches his knee, Tanahashi grabs the legs and ties them up!
Khan fights and gets the ropebreak! Tanahashi stomps Khan’s legs, then drags Khan up from the apron side. Khan hotshots Tanahashi down! Khan’s bad leg slows him down but he still gets back in the ring. But Tanahashi gets his leg in the ropes! DRAPING DRAGON SCREW! And a dropkick! Fans fire up as Tanahashi hits another DRAPING DRAGON SCREW! Tanahashi drags Khan around by the leg, ties the legs up, and has the CLOVERLEAF! Khan endures and powers up, but Tanahashi drags him from ropes! Tanahashi sits back but Khan powers up again, and Khan claws his way to the ropebreak! Tanahashi lets go fast and keeps his cool as he stomps Khan down.
Tanahashi drags Khan up and reels him in, but Khan blocks the Twist! Tanahashi keeps trying, Khan throws body shots and SMASHES Tanahashi off his knee! But it was the bad knee so that was double-edged! Khan still comes back and manages a GOURD BUSTER on Tanahashi! Khan falls over because of the bad leg and fans rally up as both men are down. Khan hobbles over, stalks Tanahashi to a corner, and whips him corner to corner, following to clothesline from behind! Khan hoists Tanahashi up backwards and Mongolian CHOPS Tanahashi on the back! Khan drags Tanahashi into a Tree of Woe and digs his boots in!
The ref counts, Khan stops at 4, and he gets the bad leg moving. Khan goes corner to corner and basement BOOTS Tanahashi down! Cover, TWO! Khan keeps after Tanahashi with a lift, ATOMIC FACEBUSTER! Khan gets Tanahashi up for a BACK SUPLEX FACEBUSTER! Cover, TWO! Tanahashi is still in this and Khan grows frustrated. Fans rally up but Khan stands first. Khan says he’ll end it now! Khan clamps onto Tanahashi with the iron claw! Tanahashi resists the lift, and clamps onto Khan’s face! It’s claw versus claw, but Khan pries Tanahashi’s hand off! Tanahashi swats Khan’s hand then ROCKS him with an uppercut! Khan falls over and Tanahashi catches his breath.
Fans rally up again, “Let’s Go, Ace!” and Tanahashi steadies himself. Tanahashi watches Khan rise, then runs, but Khan uses the ref as a shield! STRAIGHT RIGHT FIST!! Both men and the ref are down and fans rally up again! Khan crawls and shouts to Tsuji to get him something! Tsuji gets a chair?! Is Tsuji now an Empire Young Lion? Tsuji slides the chair… TO TANAHASHI! Khan is furious at Tsuji’s betrayal, but Tsuji is staying loyal to The Ace! Tanahshi takes a seat and smiles at Khan, but Khan runs in. Tanahashi drop toeholds Khan onto the chair! Khan writhes and flounders into a TWIST ‘N’ SHOUT! Tanahashi runs, but Khan BOOTS him down!
Khan clamps on the claw, drags Tanahashi up, ELIMI- SLINGBLADE!! Tanahashi hurries up top, Khan stands, HIGH FLY FLOW-BODY! Tanahashi hurries back up, HIGH FLY FLOP!! Khan avoids the splash and both men are down again! Tsuji and the fans still rally, “Let’s Go, Ace!” but Khan drags himself up in a corner. Tanahashi stands, Khan shotgun dropkicks him down! Khan is slow to rising but Tanahashi roars as he fires up! Both men stand, both men roar, and they both run at each other! Khan hits a big flying forearm! Cover, TWO! The fans are thunderous with “Let’s Go, Ace!” as Khan brings Tanahashi up.
Khan whips Tanahashi to a corner, then runs in to corner clothesline! Khan whips, Tanahashi reverses, SLINGBLADE! Khan is right up, but Tanahashi SLINGBLADES again! Khan rises again, Tanahashi runs, into a LARIAT!! Cover, TWO!! Tanahashi survives and Khan can’t believe it! Khan clamps a claw onto Tanahashi’s face and drags him back up! It’s a claw torture rack! Khan stomps around to add torque, but Tanahashi endures! Khan spins and spins for a SWINGING SLAM! Khan fires up, tears away the tape and clamps the claw directly onto Tanahashi! ELIMI- CRUCIFIX!! Cover, Tanahashi wins!!
Winner: Hiroshi Tanahashi, by pinfall (still NEVER Openweight Champion)
The Ace had a trick up his sleeve and he snatches the victory away from Khan! Khan is furious and he grabs at the ref, but the ref says the count is the count! Tsuji stays close to Tanahashi as the belt is brought over to him. With both skill and savvy, will it take far more than strength and aggression to take this title from the Once in a Century Talent?
IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship Triple Threat: BUSHI VS El Phantasmo VS El Desperado!
Another unfortunate injury takes the Ticking Timebomb out of action! He forfeited this title, but his amigo in Los Ingobernables de Japon will fight to keep it close! Will the Death Mask be able to shine with gold? Will ELP only need one good shot? Or will the Rogue Luchador start on his road to taking over the Junior Heavyweight Division?
The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and one way or another, a new champion will be crowned in the Castle Attack!
Desperado rushes ELP but he dodges. ELP dodges Bushi but Bushi dodges and ELP falls out of the ring. Desperado CLUBS Bushi, whips him to ropes, but Bushi goes to rana! Desperado blocks, Bushi fights off the bomb, but Desperado knees low. Bushi goes to a corner, Desperado runs in to back elbow, but ELP runs in! Desperado sends ELP into Bushi, then hip tosses ELP down! Bushi runs but Desperado sends his basement dropkick into ELP! Desperado then snap suplexes Bushi onto ELP! Cover on ELP, ONE! Desperado ROCKS ELP with an uppercut, then runs corner to corner at Bushi. Bushi boots back, hops up and FLYING RANAS Desperado down!
Fans fire up but ELP clubs Bushi and whips him to a corner. ELP runs in, Bushi dodges and elbows ELP, to BULLDOG DRPOKICK both opponents! Cover on ELP, TWO! Bushi keeps cool, drags ELP up and throws forearms. Desperado ROCKS Bushi with an uppercut, ELP ROCKS Desperado! ELP whips, Desperado reverses and runs in, but ELP pops Desperado up and crotches him on the rope! Bushi runs in, ELP pops him up and out but Bushi lands on the apron. Bushi blocks ELP to drag him in, but no apron DDT! ELP shoves Bushi down, climbs up to ROCK Desperado, and then climbs up higher. ELP walks the tight rope to SENTON Desperado down! Cover, TWO!
ELP grows annoyed, but he drags Desperado up to pull on the fingers, and SNAP them! And SNAP them! ELP BITES Desperado’s hand, then knuckle locks it. ELP CHOPS Desperado, goes up and up and tightrope walks, to then go to the other corner, bop Desperado, and keep on going. ELP just shows off now, saying, “Too easy, baby!” But Desperado trips ELP up! ELP is crotched on ropes, but Bushi gives Desperado the DRAPING APRON DDT! Bushi climbs up to SUPER STEINER ELP off the top! Cover, TWO! Bushi keeps his cool as he drags ELP up. ELP spins out of the fisherman but Bushi kicks low. Bushi whips, ELP reverses but Bushi dodges to DIVE out onto Desperado!
Bushi drags Desperado up but ELP runs to go up and SPRINGBOARD CROSSBODY them both! Fans admit that was great stuff! ELP hears fans cheering, but leaves fans hanging on the Too Sweet. ELP POSTS Bushi, then fetches Desperado. ELP talks some trash and kicks at Desperado. ELP drags Desperado up to DECK him, then CHOPS him further up the ramp! ELP ROCKS Desperado with a haymaker, but Desperado throws body shots! ELP ROCKS Desperado again, but Desperado blocks the suplex. Desperado throws more body shots, switches positions, and he suplexes. ELP slips out to TEAR Desperado’s mask! ELP reels Desperado in, Gotch hold PILEDRIVER to the ramp!!
ELP even mocks Minoru Suzuki with that one! The ref checks on Desperado but ELP drags him up first. ELP takes Desperado’s mask away! ELP mocks the fans who are offended, and then he puts the mask on to mock Desperado more! Des-ELP puts Bushi in the ring and then takes Desperado’ smask off. ELP STOMPS the mask, then PUNTS it out of the ring! Medics check on Desperado while ELP covers Bushi. TWO, and ELP whips Bushi to a corner. Bushi slips out to swing kick ELP away! Bushi climbs, leaps, and missile dropkicks ELP! Fans fire up for the Bushirooni! ELP bails out but Bushi SLINGSHOT RANAS him down! Fans fire up with Bushi as he drags ELP up.
Bushi puts ELP in, takes aim from a corner, and runs in, only for the Code Breaker to be blocked! ELP knees low and whips Bushi into the corner hard! ELP tears Bushi’s shirt off, and then wraps it around his fist to punch Bushi with! ELP sits Bushi up to CHOKE him with the shirt! The ref counts, ELP lets go at 4, and fans rally up. ELP drags Bushi up and hoists him up top backwards. ELP puts Bushi in a Tree of Woe and throws knees into Bushi’s stomach! Desperado is still down as ELP mocks the rallying claps. ELP takes aim from the corner, says BANG, and then runs in to handspring around, just for the CROTCH DIG!
The ref reprimands, ELP hops off and Bushi falls out of the Tree. ELP covers but the ref refuses to count because of all those antics. Fans rally while Desperado is still down. ELP drags Bushi up and whips him corner to corner. Bushi reverses, ELP goes up and over and then dodges to springboard crossbody! Somersault to LIONSAULT! Cover, TWO! ELP clamps onto Bushi with a chinlock and grinds him down. Bushi endures, ELP shifts to a sleeper, but fans rally. Bushi reaches, fights up, and fights free! Bushi runs, but ELP gets around to half straitjacket torture rack! ELP spins for a NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Bushi survives but ELP goes up top.
ELP steadies himself, takes aim, BANG and FROG SPLASH! Cover of “Thunder Kiss ’86,” TWO!! Bushi survives again and ELP is frustrated. ELP gets his boot ready, but Desperado returns! Desperado has a spare mask, even! ELP is surprised by this most of all, but he swings on Desperado! Desperado dodges to SPEAR! But that might’ve been double-edged given the bad neck. But Desperado fires off on ELP with fists! The ref pulls Desperado away but Desperado goes back for more. Desperado CHOPS ELP, whips him to the ropes, but ELP holds the ropes. ELP boots but Desperado blocks to clothesline ELP out!
Fans fire up for Desperado as he builds speed and DIVES! The somersault tope takes him and ELP out! Desperado drags ELP up and into the ring and fans fire up again. Desperado drags ELP up, reels him in and suplexes for a brainbuster! But that’s just uno amigo! Desperado hoists ELP up top with the second, and ROCKS him with an uppercut! Fans rally, Desperado climbs, and he drags ELP up. ELP resists the superplex, Desperado throws body shots, but Bushi adds on! Bushi climbs up to get around and sunset flips, POWERBOMB SUPERPLEX! Cover on Desperado, TWO! Cover on ELP, TWO! Bushi drags Desperado up for a BACKSTABBER! Cover, ELP breaks it!
Bushi goes after ELP with forearms, but ELP rakes Bushi’s eyes! The ref reprimands, ELP lets off and boots, but Bushi blocks to put the leg in the ropes! Bushi ENZIGURIS ELP down and ELP ends up stuck! Bushi gives Desperado a FISHERMAN SCREW! Cover, TWO!! Bushi aims from a corner as Desperado staggers up, CODE BREAKER! ELP gets free and throws Bushi out! ELP covers Desperado, TWO!! Desperado survives and ELP doesn’t get to steal Bushi’s work! ELP drags Desperado up, reels him in, underhooks the arms, and lifts, and surprise! STYLES CLASH!! Cover, but Bushi GHOST PINS ELP! TWO!!
Bushi throws forearms on ELP, runs, but ELP KNEES Bushi down! Was that a V-Trigger? ELP says BANG to Desperado, and V-TRIGGERS him! That was definitely a V-Trigger! And this is definitely an Electric Chair lift! But Desperado counters the One Winged Angel to EL ES CULERO!! TWO?!?! ELP narrowly escapes and Desperado can’t believe it! ELP runs but into a SPINEBUSTER! Desperado gets the STRETCH MUFFLER! ELP endures as Desperado thrashes about, and Desperado drags him from ropes! NUMERO DOS!! But ELP rolls to make it a cradle, TWO!! Desperado mule kicks then reels ELP in! Double underhooks, but no Pinche!
ELP spins out, straitjacket and torture rack, but Desperado slips out! Desperado wrenches and reels ELP in for GUITAR DEL ANGEL! Cover, TWO!?! Desperado is furious! Desperado drags ELP up, reels him in again and double underhooks, but ELP stomps Desperado’s foot! LOADED MULE KICK! LOADED BUZZSAW! ELP drags Desperado, hooks the arms, CANADIAN REVOLUTION II!! Taker cover, but Bushi stops the ref!! The fans fire up as the ref reprimands Bushi but Bushi dodges ELP. ELP ducks the enziguri but not the mule kick! Bushi runs to CODE BREAKER! Cover, TWO! ELP survives but Bushi just goes to a corner.
Fans fire up as Bushi climbs and takes aim, M- LOADED SUPERKICK!! But Bushi flops out of the ring!! ELP can’t finish it here, but he takes aim at Desperado again. ELP reloads, but Desperado does the splits! LOCO MONO!! The straight right rocks ELP but Desperado isn’t done here! Desperado underhooks ELP, but ELP back drops to bridge! TWO!? PINCHE LOCO!! And a rolling butterlfy to ANOTHER PINCHE LOCO!! Cover Taker style, DESPERADO WINS!!!
Winner: El Desperado, by pinfall (NEW IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion)
INCREIBLE! Desperado is Mr. Junior Heavyweight Champion! He has the singles AND tag team titles! Though Hiromu is hurt, does this make Desperado THE best Junior Heavyweight today?
IWGP Intercontinental Championship: Kota Ibushi VS Tetsuya Naito!
The Double Championship may have run its course, but the course of history will follow the winner! Will the Golden Star God hold onto this belt to then fuse it with the Heavyweight Championship? Or will the Uncontrollable Charisma free his favorite-not-favorite belt from that fate?
The introductions are made, the white strap is raised, and Naito takes his time with his entrance gear. Fans clap already for “I-BU-SHI!” “NA-I-TO!” The bell rings and the differences between destinies begins!
Fans rally more as Naito and Ibushi circle. They approach, feel out the grapple, and tie up. Naito puts Ibushi on the ropes, Red Shoes calls for the break but Ibushi puts Naito in a corner. Ibushi lets off with a sharp pat on the shoulders, but Naito comes right out to circle with him again. They approach, Naito goes for a leg but Ibushi gets around to full nelson. Naito throws Ibushi down but Ibushi headscissors. Ibushi squeezes tight, Naito fights up and around and pops out to get the leg. Naito has a toehold, Ibushi uses headscissors to bring Naito down, but Naito pries free to get the toehold back. Ibushi uses a chinlock to drag Naito off, and he grinds Naito into a headlock.
Naito powers up, but Ibushi holds tight so he can’t power out. Naito throws body shots, wrenches to a keylock, but Ibushi fights back to wrangle Naito down. Ibushi has the cording hold, Naito rolls back and gets up. Ibushi clamps onto the arm, Naito trips Ibushi up and gets through the leg guard to go after the arm. Ibushi slips around and facelocks. Naito reaches back and gets a ropebreak with a foot. Ibushi lets go and fans cheer the technical exchange. Naito paces around the ring, taking a full lap before getting back in. Ibushi is ready and the two circle again. They feel out a grapple, Naito reels Ibushi into a facelock, but Ibushi shoots around to waistlock.
Ibushi rolls Naito around, shifts again, but Naito holds off the headlock and gets a double wristlock! Naito pulls back on the arm, shifts to get the other arm, chicken wing cradle! TWO, but Naito keeps on the left arm with a hammerlock. Ibushi rolls around, gets up and wrenches Naito’s arm to a wristlock. Naito rolls, wrenches back, but Ibushi drops to drop toehold! Ibushi floats to a chinlock but Naito fights up. Naito stands, powers Ibushi to a corner, and Red Shoes calls for the break. Ibushi lets go, Naito takes his time backing off, and he pats Ibushi on the shoulder. And then he fires off with clubbing forearms! Red Shoes grabs at Naito but Naito pushes him down!
Red Shoes goes out to recover, Naito whips Ibushi corner to corner but Ibushi boots him away! Naito runs back in, Ibushi goes up and over and avoids the basement dropkick! Ibushi runs, Naito drops to pop Ibushi up and then dropkick the legs out! Fans cheer this newest exchange as Ibushi is down. Ibushi growls and Naito eggs him on. Ibushi tries to stand but that leg bothers him. Naito sits and waits while Ibushi grows frustrated with his own body. Ibushi shakes the bad leg out, Red Shoes checks it, and Naito dropkicks it again! Ibushi bails out, Naito pursues, and Naito stomps Ibushi around ringside!
Red Shoes reprimands, Naito drags Ibushi up, and Naito whips Ibushi, only for Ibushi to hobble and fall over. Fans rally up, “I-BU-SHI!” “NA-I-TO!” Naito watches from the apron as Ibushi stirs. The ring count climbs, and is already 10 of 20 before Ibushi stands. Naito goes out to catch Ibushi at the apron, and he elbows away on Ibushi’s leg! Red Shoes reprimands and Naito backs off. Naito goes in, drags Ibushi up, and he kicks away on Ibushi’s ribs! Naito has the bad leg and he CLUBS the knee! Naito hooks the legs up, modified figure four! Ibushi endures as Naito adds pressure to the knees! Ibushi sits up and eggs Naito on! Naito adds more pressure and fans rally as Ibushi endures!
Ibushi drags himself and Naito over towards the ropes and gets the ropebreak! Naito claims he needs help so Red Shoes undoes the hold for him. Naito drags Ibushi by his leg, and SMASHES the knee into the mat! Ibushi grimaces, but he glares at Naito. Naito SMASHES the knee, then kicks Ibushi down to SMASH the knee again! Cover, ropebreak! Naito keeps his cool as he looms over Ibushi. Fans rally more, Naito drags Ibushi up, but Ibushi throws forearms! Naito kicks the bad leg! Naito grabs the leg but Ibushi resists the lift. Naito kicks the leg again, runs, but Ibushi manages to dropkick Naito down! Both men are down and fans rally up!
Ibushi rises first, fires off forearms then whips Naito. Naito reverses but Ibushi manages a FLYING KICK! Ibushi rallies the fans and he hits a STANDING MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO! Ibushi shakes his head and he fires up more. Naito grimaces as Ibushi stalks behind him. Ibushi waistlocks, Naito mule kicks the bad leg! Naito stands Ibushi up to kick the bad leg again! Ibushi eggs Naito on so Naito kicks the bad leg again! Naito elbows, Ibushi eggs him on so Naito SLAPS Ibushi down! Naito sits Ibushi up to basement dropkick in the back! Cover, TWO! Naito keeps cool again as he stands on Ibushi’s bad leg.
Naito stomps the leg, drags Ibushi up and puts him in a corner, to whip Ibushi corner to corner. Rocket kick and sweep, COMBINACION CABRON! Naito takes a moment to pose before he drags Ibushi up for a neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Naito drags Ibushi back up, then catches Ibushi’s forearm into a backbreaker! PLUMA BLANCA! Ibushi endures the leg hook full nelson, kicks his way around, and he gets the ropebreak with his feet! Naito holds on, Red Shoes reprimands and counts but again Naito “needs help.” Red Shoes undoes the hold, Naito drags Ibushi back up and hammerlocks, but Ibushi resists the lift! Ibushi fights free but Naito kicks the bad leg!
Naito gets the leg but Ibushi elbows free! Ibushi whips, Naito leaps, but into Ibushi’s SNAP GERMAN! Naito staggers up, Ibushi runs in but into the TORNADO DDT! Both men are down again and fans fire up! “I-BU-SHI!” “NA-I-TO!” Both slowly stir, Naito sits up first, and he drags Ibushi up to throw forearms. Ibushi throws the forearms back, and Naito grins. Naito forearms Ibushi, Ibushi forearms back! Naito DECKS Ibushi but Ibushi gets back up to throw another forearm. Naito returns it, they go faster and faster, and the fans fire up as this gets fast and furious! Ibushi gets the edge so Naito kicks the leg! Ibushi sobats, runs, but into a basement dropkick!
Ibushi hobbles, Naito trips him up, and gets the ANKLE LOCK! Naito drops down for a leg scissor! Ibushi endures and fans rally up as Naito puts more pressure on the leg! Ibushi crawls around, claws for ropes, but Naito pushes on the knee even harder! Ibushi still gets the ropebreak! Naito lets go faster this time, and takes a moment to catch his breath. Ibushi is in the corner, fans rally up, but Naito stomps Ibushi’s bad leg. Naito throws back elbows, stomps the leg, then throws more back elbows! Ibushi starts to flop over in the corner as Red Shoes counts. Naito lets off, just to stand Ibushi up for more back elbows! Naito pushes Ibushi through the ropes then climbs the corner.
Naito drags Ibushi up and hits a SUPER THROWBACK STUNNER! Naito then drags Ibushi up, for GLORIA! Cover, TWO!! Ibushi barely escapes but Naito grins again. Naito drags Ibushi back to a corner, hoists him up top backwards, then climbs up behind him. Ibushi resists so Naito CLUBS away on his back! Naito sits Ibushi back up, but Ibushi slips out to trip Naito up! ROUNDHOUSE! Both men are down but fans fire up again! Ibushi kicks at Naito while they’re both on the mat, and he gets Naito to the apron. Ibushi gives more kicks before he drags Naito up. Ibushi goes up the ropes, waistlocks Naito, but Naito resists the lift!
Naito throws clubbing shots, Ibushi gives them back. Ibushi dead lifts for the SUPER GERMAN SUPLEX!! Ibushi crawls to the cover, TWO?!!? Naito narrowly escapes but his eyes look vacant! Ibushi drags himself up, grits his teeth, and aims from a corner. Naito slowly sits up, Ibushi runs to BOMAYE! Ibushi reels Naito in, Naito fights the bomb, but Ibushi still hits THE LAST RIDE!! Cover, TWO!! Naito still lives and fans fire up again! Ibushi vows to end this! Ibushi gets the wrists, sits Naito up, but Naito avoids the Kamigoye to scoop and VALENTIA!! Both men are down after the modified brainbuster but fans fire up again!
Naito rises, drags Ibushi up, and wrenches the arm, but Ibushi blocks the tilt-o-whirl! Ibushi throws elbows but Naito throws his heavier elbows! Naito throws more elbows, Ibushi drops to his knees, but Naito just stands him back up. Naito throws even more elbows into Ibushi, but Ibushi dodges to LARIAT!! Both men are down again and fans rally up! Ibushi roars and fires up, then gets the wrists. Naito elbows first, then ENZIGURIS! Ibushi staggers, into DESTINO!! Cover, TWO?!?! Ibushi survives but Naito gets up. Naito drags Ibushi up, wrenches and tilt-o-whirls, but into a gut wrench! Ibushi fireman’s carries but Naito fights it with flailing elbows!
Naito finally slips off, runs in, but into a ROUNDHOUSE! Naito roars and comes back, into a V-TRIGGER! KENNY~! Ibushi sits Naito up from behind, BLINDSIDE KAMIGOYE!! Ibushi isn’t done there, he sits Naito up from the front, but Naito gets around to hammerlock and cradle! TWO, KAMIGOYE!! Cover, TWO!??!? Naito survives all that but Ibushi just wants to end him! ANOTHER KAMIGOYE! Ibushi flops down onto the cover, and Ibushi wins!!!
Winner: Kota Ibushi, by pinfall (still IWGP Intercontinental Champion)
The Golden Star God is still a dual champion! Ibushi has denied Naito his wish of having the Intercontinental Championship back! Does this mean Ibushi will finish his plans and unify the top two titles in NJPW? But wait! The other dual champion, DESPERADO, returns! Desperado goes to the ring and applauds Ibushi’s win here. Ibushi stands and allows Desperado to join him in the ring. Desperado gets the mic first, and he says, “Congratulations on your defense, champion. It was pretty bold of me to come out here after you had that intense fight.” Desperado says that isn’t really important. He reminds us that he is the new IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion.
Does Ibushi remember the first time Desperado challenged for this title? What year was it? Hard to recall. Anyone here in Osaka remember? After all, it happened in Osaka, against IBUSHI! “The champion completely beat me. How long ago was that?” It took Desperado a long time but he’s finally reached that title now! Ibushi nods respect. Desperado says the last few years, there’s been a tradition at the NJPW Anniversary Show that the Heavyweight and Junior Heavyweight Champions have a singles match. So it might have taken Desperado a long time, but he’s here to claim his prize for winning! But Desperado doesn’t just want a singles match! He wants BOTH belts that Ibushi has!! Fans really like that idea!
Desperado doesn’t remember how long it’s been but it has been a long time. And Desperado will show Ibushi he’s not the same man he was back then. Commentary lets us know it was February 11, 2014, so that makes it 7 years and 17 days. Ibushi says it was basically 8 years. And he’s been saying he’ll take on all challengers, anytime, any place, and anyone! The challenge is on! Desperado won his first singles title, and that’s great. And though it was a long time ago, Ibushi hasn’t forgotten that match! “I will never forget how much you SUCKED back then!” Desperado says he’s a different animal now, and Ibushi will find that out!
Then he’ll see at the Anniversary Show in just FOUR days! Because Ibushi is a fighting champion! And he will never betray the fans, he’ll never quit, run away or lose! He will absolutely keep his promise! Ibushi thanks the fans for coming out to see them in these difficult times, and hopes they keep watching and supporting NJPW! Ibushi sets the mic down and finally celebrates his win! But with only a handful of days to prepare, will the IWGP Double Heavyweight Champion be ready for a determined IWGP Double Junior Heavyweight Champion?
Another great event, a touch better than yesterday’s, but mostly because of the title matches being part of the show. The non-title tag matches were both good, from Kojima & Tenzan shocking the United Empire, and Chaos standing tall over Bullet Club. I like that Tenzan stopped caring about the agreement to never use the Mongolian Chops again. Why agree to a deal with bad guys when they just rub it in your face anyway? Okada is building momentum for the New Japan Cup, but I’m pretty sure we’re going to get a match for Okada at the Anniversary Show. Guerrillas retaining the titles make sense, we’d end up with too many dual champions right now if Goto-Hashi won.
I figured Tanahashi would retain the NEVER Openweight Championship, he only just got it. The match was great, but given the story element of Tsuji’s loyalty coming into play, this is not done between them. This story might even be Tsuji’s way from moving out of Young Lion status. Usually that happens by going on excursion, but that is made so much harder right now because of COVID concerns, so tradition might have to be put aside for these special circumstances.
The IWGP Junior Heavyweight Triple Threat was great stuff, and I missed Desperado & Kanemaru winning back the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag titles as part of the Road to Castle Attack series. But him winning the singles title is great, both for making him a dual champion, and for him to finally have that accomplishment. The Intercontinental Championship match was awesome stuff, on par with even a Heavyweight Championship match, mostly because it was Ibushi and Naito. Ibushi wins to keep the tease of title unification, but I love that Desperado wants to pounce on all of that.
I assume by unifying the Heavyweight & Intercontinental titles, that somehow removes the weight restriction. Otherwise, Desperado can’t have both Junior Heavyweight and proper Heavyweight titles. Granted, I don’t think Desperado wins more belts to make him a triple to quadruple champion, but that match is going to be great stuff to then launch us into the stacked New Japan Cup schedule for March.
My Score: 9.2/10
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