NXT puts the spotlight on tag team wrestling!
Not only will Imperium defend their NXT Tag Team Championships, but Tegan Nox & Shotzi Blackheart have their shot at the WWE Women’s Tag titles!
- NXT Tag Team Championships: Imperium VS Breezango; Imperium wins and retains the NXT Tag Team Championships.
- Damian Priest VS Killian Dain; Priest wins.
- Xia Li VS Aliyah; Aliyah wins.
- Kayden Carter w/ Kacy Catanzaro VS Dakota Kai w/ Raquel Gonzalez; Dakota wins.
- Bronson Reed VS Leon Ruff; Reed wins.
- WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships: Bayley & Sasha Banks VS Tegan Nox & Shotzi Blackheart; Bayley & Banks win and retain the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships.
PLAY BY PLAY
NXT Tag Team Championships: Imperium VS Breezango!
There’s no time to waste on tonight’s tag team title double feature! Marcel Barthel & Fabian Aichner vow to uphold Imperium’s solemn principles that the mat is sacred. While Tyler Breeze and Fandango love to have fun before and after the bell, they do agree that it’s time to get serious. Who seriously gets beaten and who gets the gold?
Wait, what’s this? Emporium? It’s Breezango parodying Marcel and Fabian as “Marsupial” and “Fabio!” This isn’t going to help the mood the Impeccable German and the Pride of Italy are in! The introductions are made, the belts are raised, and it’s time to start this night of tag team gold!
The bell rings and Imperium attacks Breezango! This is what they get for making jokes! Fandango is sent out of the ring while Barthel tears Breeze’s track suit off to throw it at him! Barthel drags Breeze up to ROCK with an uppercut and stomp away in the corner! The ref counts, Barthel backs off, but Barthel grinds Breeze with a headlock. Barthel snapmares and KICKS Breeze while he’s down! Barthel clamps on a chinlock but Breeze fights up. Breeze jawbreakers free then throws haymakers. Aichner tags in, Barthel whips Breeze away and Aichner arm-drags Breeze down! Aichner cranks on the arm but Breeze fights his way up. Breeze throws hands and arm-drags, but Aichner holds on to drag Breeze back down.
Aichner cranks on Breeze but Breeze fights his way up. Breeze throws body shots but Aichner headlocks. Breeze powers out but Aichner holds ropes, only for Breeze to crossbody them both out of the ring! Breeze gets up, Barthel looms close but the ref has him back off. But then Fandango comes over, the ref is busy with him, and Barthel sucker punches Breeze! Barthel brings Breeze around to feed to Aichner’s alley-oop! Breeze crashes head first into Plexiglas! Aichner drags Breeze up and into the ring, covers, ONE! Breeze toughs it out but Aichner scrapes his soles on Breeze’s face. Aichner drags Breeze up, whips him to the corner, but the crowd rallies as Barthel tags in. Imperium mugs Breeze in the corner and talks trash, but Breeze hits back. Barthel clubs Breeze down and shouts, “NEIN!”
Barthel drags Breeze up to cravat and snapmare, then sits Breeze up for a keylock sleeper hold. Breeze fights up, fights free, but Barthel CLUBS him back down. Barthel drags Breeze up, back suplexes, but Breeze lands on his feet! Breeze baits Barthel in to send him out! Breeze crawls, hot tag to Fandango! Aichner tags in but gets a BOOT! Fandango leaps to knee Aichner down! Barthel runs into a hip toss neckbreaker! Fandango dodges Aichner for the spinning powerslam! The crowd fires up with the Lord of the Dance, and he uses Barthel to help in the TORNADO DDT! Aichner bails out but Fandango builds speed. Fandango FLIES to take Imperium down at the ramp! All four men are down as NXT goes to break!
NXT returns and Breeze suplexes Barthel up and over! Cover, TWO, but Breeze brings Barthel up. Barthel kicks low then whips him towards the corner. Breeze reverses but Barthel puts him up top. Aichner tags in, Barthel enziguris Breeze, then rocket launches him into Aichner’s BRAIN BUSTER! Cover, but Fandango breaks it! Aichner protests but Fandango goes back to his corner. Aichner drags Breeze back up, tags Barthel in, and then Imperium mugs Prince Pretty. Barthel circles around Breeze like a shark as the crowd rallies up. Barthel talks trash while bringing Breeze up by his ear. Breeze pops free to PELE! Breeze drags Barthel over and tags in Fandango. Catapult to the forearm! Slingshot for the 21st Century Classic! Do Miz and Morrison know about this? Cover, Aichner barrels into Breeze to break it up!
All four men are down again, Breeze and Aichner go back to their corners. Fandango runs in at Barthel at the corner, blocks Barthel’s boot, but gets his kick for it! Tag to Aichner and he reels Fandango in while Barthel goes up. But Fandango back drops to deny the EuroBomb! Barthel leaps into the SUPER MODEL KICK! Fandango SUPERKICKS Aichner! Fandango hurries while Aichner is down, LAST DANCE LEG DROP! Cover, but Barthel breaks it! Breeze returns to run at Barthel but he’s sent out! Fandango clotheslines Barthel out and is alone with Aichner in the ring. But wait, Indus Sher and Malcolm Bivens appear! Rinku and Saurav loom dangerously close to Breeze and Barthel, but the BritAm Bruisers get them first! Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch take the fight to Bivens’ behemoths!
The referee shouts for the uninvited teams to get out but Breeze puts Barthel in. Barthel knocks Breeze onto the brawling four! Fandango rolls Barthel but it’s Aichner who is legal! BASEMENT DDT! Cover, Imperium wins!
Winners: Imperium, by pinfall (still NXT Tag Team Champions)
Barthel & Aichner owe a lot to the chaos at ringside. Oney and Burch kept Indus Sher from ruining things, but they didn’t mean for it to go this way. Are the tag team champions going to be surrounded by contenders hungry for the gold?
Tom Phillips interviews The Velveteen Dream via NXT video.
The Dream did not win at TakeOver: In Your House in the Backlot Brawl, and that means he cannot challenge for the NXT Championship while Adam Cole still reigns. But Dream says that’s the wrong line of questioning. The question should be how Tom Phillips has been in the WWE for ten years and this is the first time they’ve talked. Wait, creeping up behind Dream is Dexter Lumis!! He leaves Dream a message in the form of a drawing while Dream is telling Phillips that Dream has “no recollection” of his loss. Then he sees the calling card left by Lumis. It’s of the two of them… As NXT Tag Team Champions? Well, now this is a misunderstanding, Lumis. Lumis helped Dream against the Undisputed Era, and Dream returned the favor. The drawing means nothing to Dream, because he is a solo act. What will it take for such an eclectic duo to become more than just a far off dream?
Damian Priest arrives at Full Sail.
The Archer of Infamy wants to get himself right, too. Cameron Grimes is creeping in the background, probably making sure Priest doesn’t see him at all. Priest returns to action, after the break.
Damian Priest VS Killian Dain!
The Archer of Infamy may have lost to The Prince, but he hasn’t let that kill his ego. He still vows to #LiveForever, but will he be able to survive the Beast of Belfast?
The bell rings and Dain circles with Damian. They tie up, Dain powers Priest to ropes but Priest powers back. They go along the ropes, Dain has Priest in the corner but Priest powers him back. Dain headlocks, Priest powers out but the two collide with shoulders. Neither falls so Priest eggs Dain on. Things speed up, both men show some agility, but then Priest hurdles, only for his back to spasm. Dain takes advantage with a BIG shotgun dropkick! And then clubbing forearms! Dain goes after the bad back, the leftovers of that fall onto steel! Priest fights off the back suplex with elbows then an ear clap! Priest BOOTS Dain to a corner, then runs in, only to be put on the apron. Priest’s back bothers him again, but he dodges Dain to ROUNDHOUSE him back!
Priest gets in but Dain has him at the ropes to club away over and over! Dain goes to a corner while Priest is stuck, for a GUILLOTINE LEG DROP! Priest is growling in pain but Dain just keeps on his lumbar with forearms and hammering fists. Dain pulls Priest back in a low rider camel clutch. The crowd rallies up and Priest fights up, only for Dain to knee his back. Priest again fights off the suplex but Dain headbutts him back. Priest elbows Dain away, fires off kicks, then fast hands, but Dain ducks the People’s Punch to hit a back suplex! Dain holds on to drag Priest up for another back suplex! And then another, that turns into a sit out facebuster! Cover, TWO!! Priest refuses to stay down so Dain drags him back up. Dain clubs the bad back again, reels him in and suplexes, but Priest makes it a crossbody!
Priest gets to a corner, Dain runs in but only gets buckles! The crowd rallies as Priest pushes through the pain. Dain gets up, Priest fires off haymakers! Dain body shots but Priest bobs ‘n’ weaves to uppercut, forearm and kick away! Priest ROCKS Dain, then CLOBBERS him with that right! The crowd fires up as Priest whips Dain corner to corner. Dain reverses, Priest goes up and leaps to forearm Dain down! Cover, TWO! Dain is tough but Priest won’t lose focus. Priest runs corner to corner for a leaping back elbow! He keeps moving, and hits a corner to corner uppercut! The bad back slows him but Priest wants a third, only to get the DIVIDE! Cover, TWO!! Priest still lives but Dain won’t let up.
Dain drags Priest to a corner, Electric Chair lifts, but Priest fights off Ulster Plantation to a victory roll! TWO, but Priest hits the CYCLONE KICK! Dragon sleeper, RECKONING! Cover, Priest wins!
Winner: Damian Priest, by pinfall
Priest survives a tough fight with a big beast. Priest hasn’t attained the immortality he desires, but will he hit the mark soon enough?
NXT hears from Santos Escobar.
The man formerly known as El Hijo del Fantasma stands with Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde, who were his fellow conspirators all along. “When you turn your back on a legacy, a new future is born.” Now, they rewrite the history of lucha libre in their own words, starting tonight. What do Escobar and his allies have in store for NXT and the Cruiserweight Division?
NXT shares footage from during the break.
Killian Dain was making his exit when he spotted a very distraught, sloven and perhaps drunk Robert Stone leaning on the Plexiglas, practically asleep. Dain BANGED the Plexiglas and Stone fell over! Is Stone okay?
Xia Li VS Aliyah!
It’s time to get spicy as this red hot rivalry returns! Will Xia and Aliyah finally settle the score?
But as Aliyah makes her entrance, she sees the down and out Robert Stone. She goes over to him to help him up. Stone won’t give up his brown paper bag of booze, but he does go with Aliyah to ringside. She wants him to watch her match closely, but how well can he even see with smudged glasses and beer goggles?
The bell rings and Xia ties up with Aliyah. The two go around the ropes, Aliyah arm-drags and hits a Thesz Press! She throws fast hands but Xia gets up to throw fast kicks! Aliyah freaks out and goes on the defensive in a corner! The ref counts, Xia rams into Aliyah then puts her up top. Xia CHOPS Aliyah but Aliyah SLAPS back! Aliyah reels Xia in for a tornado NORTHERN LIGHTS! Bridging cover, TWO! Aliyah is already frustrated and she pushes Xia around. Xia gets mad and hops up to ENZIGURI! Xia kips up and rallies on Aliyah with clotheslines and kicks! Aliyah flounders to a corner, Xia runs in, and hits a SUPER FOREARM! Xia keeps moving, DYANMIC DROPKICK!
Stone flounders up onto the apron in a drunken stupor and waves for a timeout. He also looks ready to hurl, and he DOES!! The ref and Xia are both grossed out, but who isn’t?! Aliyah rolls Xia up, TWO!! Aliyah tries again, and Aliyah wins!!
Winner: Aliyah, by pinfall
Aliyah hopes Robert Stone saw that, but he can’t even see where he’s walking and just falls off the apron! Aliyah may be desperate for guidance, but is she really that desperate?
Timothy Thatcher’s prospective students gather.
“Hello again, gentlemen.” Thatcher welcomes them to the first day of the Thatch as Thatch Can wrestling school. He will teach them about the details of submission style wrestling, “Things no one else will be able to show you.” Thatcher shows off the Fujiwara armbar. If you recline back and pull up, you can get the arm even farther. The wrestler being used as the example is tapping out, but Thatcher goes even deeper and deeper to make his point. Any questions? No. Next, the double wristlock, which Thatcher enhances with a leg over the subject’s head. By the way, it’s still the guy who took the Fujiwara armbar. His other arm suffers from this Kimura, and he rolls the shoulder until, yep, there it is.
“Gentlemen, line up. I said line up!” This was just day one. Next time, the real work begins. Dismissed. And clean up this mess, this guy was crying all over the mat. Will anyone survive to graduate Thatcher’s training?
The Undisputed Era goes to therapy.
Bobby Fish and Adam Cole are definitely worried about Roderick Strong after the trauma caused by Dexter Lumis. Cole says this is going to work. Fish says they have to do it in house, though. They pick up Strong in the limousine but he is in no mood to “Hoo hoo hoo hoo!” Awkward silence and then Cole says that they understand Strong has been through a lot. This therapist is the best, and he can help bring back the Roddy we know and love. It’ll be okay. “Driver, let’s go!”
Strong rests on the couch as his friends assure him of everything. This doctor is the best. They are going to help him feel safe. Surprise! The therapist is Kyle O’Reilly! But he pretends to be “Doctor Lyle von Thurstonburgen.” Tell him about this repressed psychological trauma. It’s Lumis, doc! He’s the worst person ever! He kidnapped Strong and Bobby and shoved them in a car trunk. Then Strong sees Lumis just staring at him through glass. He can’t get that out of his head! The staring! Yes, Cole and Fish admit their mistake in not believing him. Strong gets angry as he vents about people staring at him and how he hates that, but they calm him down. Kyle says this is a safe space, they’re all just here to help him.
Kyle moves things on to the classic Rorschach test to see how Strong’s mind is feeling. Cole and Fish show Strong the first one. Big muscle man! Yeah, like Strong and their old buddy, Troy. Next? OH NO IT’S LUMIS! What? Where? How? The others don’t see it. Skip it. Third? Flip it upside down maybe. OMG the car trunk!! He slaps the paper away! The others try to calm Strong down, but Kyle almost lets it slip it’s him. But this is a breakthrough! It seems the trauma actually stems from the car trunk. Strong needs to confront his fears, and that means facing a trunk. No! Strong needs more time. But they don’t have time! They argue, but Strong gives in. “I’m jumping in that trunk!”
Cole and Fish go with Strong to the parking lot and the limo’s trunk. Strong is anxious, reluctant, and then he runs away! Roddy, no! Get back here, man! No dice. Well, the running away aside, things went pretty well, right? They’ll go pick Strong up with the limo.
Backstage interview with Adam Cole.
The NXT Champion holds onto his belt as he stares at the hourglass left for him by Scarlett Bourdeaux on behalf of Karrion Kross. Also there’s a Sonic milkshake. But what does Cole think about Kross’ hourglass? “I don’t know, I guess they were trying to scare me or something.” But the thing is, we’ve all seen this before. It’s the same movie but with different characters. And at the end of that movie, Cole is still NXT Champion. How many times does he have to say it? But then Keith Lee walks over to have a talk with the champ. Keith came to let Cole know that Kross is correct on one thing: Cole’s time with that title is all but over. But it’s not Kross that will take it. It’ll be Keith. And then he SMASHES the hourglass! Cole smirks and leaves, but Keith says, “Ticktock.” Has the Limitless One just cancelled doomsday?
Adam Cole heads to the ring!
Cole’s undisputed ego is the only thing keeping him from being worried about the new list of challengers lining up behind him. Cole gets a mic and says, “300 and 81 days. Let me say that one more time. 300 and 81 days, I have been NXT Champion.” Not one of those days has he taken it for granted. That’s because Cole knows “without question,” he is the hardest working, greatest champion in this business. For 381 days, people have tried to tear down Cole, and for those 381 days, they have failed. That is why it is beyond mind-numbing that people think they can just throw names in the hat and say they deserve a shot. “It does not work that way, boys and girls.” Just look at Karrion Kross. He came up at TakeOver, very impressive against “one of the baddest men” in Tommaso Ciampa. But guess what? Cole’s been there, done that. Kross has been here five minutes and has a long way to go before he’s earned a match with Cole.
That brings Cole to Keith Lee. Keith said that he has his eyes on Cole’s title? Well guess what! Cole has eyes on the North American Championship. Do not forget Cole was the first-ever and still greatest NXT North American Champion ever. Maybe Cole wants to carry that title for 381 days. Maybe he’ll have two belts on his shoulders. And maybe after Cole beats Keith, Keith and the entire world can refer to Cole as #ChampChampBAYBAY. But speaking of, here comes the Limitless One! The two champions stand in the ring now, and Keith has a mic to respond. But then Johnny Gargano heads to the ring!
“Wow! What a cool moment between you two!” But as much as he hates to interrupt, Gargano doesn’t care about moments anymore. He cares about results. The result last week was Gargano pinning Keith 1-2-3. That means Gargano is coming after the North American Championship again. But then why stop there? Gargano is the first-ever NXT Triple Crown Champion, so it’s about time Gargano gets the reign he deserves. He and Candice vowed to make history as the first ever married couple to reign together at the same time. Then Cole can call Gargano #JohnnyChampChamp. But Keith asks “John Boy” how Candice is doing. Oh she’s doing great, after Keith squishing her! No, after what Gargano did, because it was Keith who was more concerned about her than Gargano was.
And Keith remember specifically, while he was picking up her frail little body, and with a tear almost falling from his eye, she whispered to him, “Thank you, Mr. Limitless. That’s the most action I’ve had all year.” LIAR!! But now here comes Finn Balor! The Prince has a mic to say, “Well now that Finn is here, I guess you fellas can stop being marks for yourselves and go back to being a mark for me.” Keith, did you hear Finn last week? He’ll tell you again. Balor has held titles all over the world, but the North American Championship is one he’s never held. Gargano corrects Balor, he’s not Mark, he’s Johnny. And remind us again, was Balor a Triple Crown? Nope. Balor isn’t like Gargano. He doesn’t wait in lines, he cuts to the front. Balor stares Keith down and tells him, “This isn’t a challenge. This is a warning.” Balor is taking that title, and when he does, he’ll go right after Cole’s.
Cole has been a great “transitional” champion- PFFT! Transitional?! Are you kidding? Cole just beat Balor’s old record! But this is perfect because it’s Balor’s career in a nutshell: He shows up somewhere, is the king for a little while, and then Cole shows up in that same place to pass him by. Balor chuckles, but then crosses Cole out? What is that? Balor says that is where Balor is going to put Cole. But before anything more can be said or done, William Regal speaks on the titantron! He loves this passion, competition, and now he has an idea where everybody wins! Next week, Keith Lee defends the North American Championship against Gargano, AND Balor, in a Triple Threat.
But don’t worry, Cole, Regal didn’t forget him. Because the man who walks away North American Champion moves on to face Adam Cole, July 8th, Champion VS Champion, WINNER TAKES ALL! A MASSIVE move for NXT! By the end of the Summer, one man becomes THE champion of NXT! Will we #BaskInHisGlory? Do things #TheJohnnyGarganoWay? Or have The Prince seated upon his throne?
Backstage interview with Keith Lee.
What does he think of that announcement by Regal? But before he can answer, Candice comes by to confront him about that inappropriate joke. Also, is Keith kidding? There is no way he beats her husband. But then Keith points behind Candice, and she turns around to see Mia Yim! And Mia fires off on Candice all the way down the hall! Mia throws Candice into a shelving unit, then throws the contents of the shelf down onto her! Candice throws them back and then slides Mia along chairs! Security hurries to stop this, but it’s only escalating! Will Regal have a way to help these two settle their own score?
Kayden Carter w/ Kacy Catanzaro VS Dakota Kai w/ Raquel Gonzalez!
Last week, KC helped KC when #CobraKai and the Daughter of the Desperado were beating her down. Though, it didn’t really go their way… But now, Carter takes Dakota on herself! Will KC succeed where KC fell short?
The bell rings and Dakota runs into Kayden’s takedown! Kayden fires off hands but Dakota kicks her away. Kayden dodges Dakota to come back with a crossbody! She fires off more fast hands but Dakota turns it around to waistlock. Kayden breaks free, switches and rolls Dakota, TWO! Kayden sees Raquel lurking and springs away to basement dropkick Dakota down! Dakota bails out then runs away, with #BigMami standing in Kayden’s way. Dakota then comes around to go after Kayden, but Kayden ROCKS her with a right! Kayden puts Dakota back in, but has to handspring over Raquel’s cheap shot! The ref reprimands Raquel but Dakota scorpion kicks Kayden down! Dakota drags Kayden in, covers, TWO!
Dakota keeps on Kayden with pie faces, but Kayden eggs her own. Kayden shoves Dakota then counter punches. Kayden keeps hitting Dakota and starts to rally! The crowd fires up with her as she dropkicks Dakota down! Kayden pulls off the arm bands to whip Dakota. Dakota reverses, Kayden wheelbarrows and MULE KICKS! Cover, TWO! Kayden brings Dakota up, whips her to a corner but Dakota reverses. Dakota runs in but is put on the apron. Dakota rocks Kayden back, steps in but into a knee! Kayden jumps on for a draping facebuster! Raquel shouts at Kayden but Kacy LEAPS at her! But Raquel catches the tiny Ninja Warrior, to toss her at the apron! Dakota rolls Kayden, TWO!! But into the BUTTERFLY STRETCH! Kayden taps, Dakota wins!
Winner: Dakota Kai, by submission
Captain Kota takes advantage of her insurance policy again, and has swept KC and KC. But is this the last we’ve seen of this confrontation?
Scarlett finds the shattered hourglass.
The heartthrob harbinger sees the sand spilled upon the floor, and Kross steps on the broken glass. How will they respond to this bold rejection of their ultimatum?
NXT hears from Mercedes Martinez.
“19 years, I’ve been rugged, thugged, grinding, hustling, and here I am.” No nonsense, all action, and she’s not here to lose. “Every single female better watch their back.” Everyone needs to know who Mercedes Martinez is. And she’ll be back very soon!
Bronson Reed VS Leon Ruff!
Two men who know what Karrion Kross is capable of now meet each other in the ring. Will Auszilla keep focused on the opponent in front of him and now the one that could be lurking up behind him? Or will Ruff rev his engines and get the literally biggest upset in his young career?
The bell rings and Ruff runs to get run over! Reed shrugs and sentons down on Ruff! The crowd goes nuts for the #ThiccBoi as he climbs up top! Ruff suffers the MEGATON SPLASH!! Cover, Reed wins!
Winner: Bronson Reed, by pinfall
A very fast and very damaging defeat for little ol’ Ruff! Reed grabs a mic to say he is not one to forget. That is why he will do what no one has. He is calling Kross out for a match next week! Reed is putting Kross on the clock, but shows Ruff some mercy. Will Mr. Doomsday show either of them any mercy once they cross paths again?
NXT spots Damian Priest in the parking lot.
Someone slashed his tires!? Who would do that? Well, perhaps a certain someone. Cameron Grimes drives by taunting Priest, “You want me to get you an Uber?” Grimes sure is brave as he drives away. Will Priest deflate Grimes’ ego the next time they meet?
Santos Escobar and cohorts head to the ring.
Mendoza and Wilde walk with the NXT Cruiserweight Champion, united under the banner of “Legado del Fantasma.” Escobar takes a mic to say, “El Hijo del Fantasma was known in the Latin culture as the best lucha libre artist ever.” And he means ever. But of course, when you wear a mask, that is all the world sees. A luchador in a mask. For 20 years, that was him. But then he earned his opportunity to join NXT, and he knew that on this worldwide platform, that the “book of El Hijo del Fantasma” would come to an end. Growing up under his father, El Fantasma, he was always told he would be a leader, not a follower. Escobar promises to make Mendoza and Wilde leaders, because he is the leader of leaders. Together, they will leave a legacy. El Legado del Fantasma.
“Congratulation, Santos!” Drake Maverick heads to the ring as he says Escobar fooled everyone. He certainly fooled Maverick, too. People have told Maverick he has more guts than brains, and they’re all absolutely right! Maverick rushes Escobar and takes him down, but Wilde and Mendoza are there! Maverick punches them away, then DIVES to get at Escobar! Wilde and Mendoza keep trying, but he pushes them away again! Escobar hits Maverick then flapjacks him onto the railing! El Legado dumps Maverick over onto concrete and they stomp away on him! They drag Maverick over to a table but he keeps fighting! Escobar uses a monitor to SMACK Maverick in the back! El Legado hauls Maverick up and then Escobar brings Maverick with him, PHANTOM DRIVER THROUGH THE TABLE!!
Escobar cleans himself up and Wilde hands him the title. El Legado has the gold, but have they just put an end to Maverick’s story?
NXT returns as medics help Maverick.
Needless to say, Maverick needed a backboard, neck brace and stretcher. Jake Atlas was among those to accompany Maverick to the ambulance. Will Atlas look to avenge Rockstar Spud?
WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships: Bayley & Sasha Banks VS Tegan Nox & Shotzi Blackheart!
The #GoldenRoleModels made it through Backlash’s Triple Threat with Bliss-Cross and The IIconics, and look to make the birthday week of #BayleyDosStraps a big one! They return to NXT to defend their tag titles, but are they going to underestimate the Shiniest Wizard and wild child?
As both teams get in the ring, lot of trash is talked and Shotzi howls at Bayley. The introductions are made, the tag belts are raised, and it’s time to see if Bayley and Banks can #TCB, take care of business!
Teams sort out and Tegan starts against Sasha. They circle, tie up, and Sasha arm-drags Tegan down to an armlock. Tegan fights her way back up, gets around to a waistlock, but Sasha standing switches. Tegan pries free, switches again, but Sasha backs her to a corner. The ref counts but Sasha elbows Tegan away. The two go again, Sasha throws Tegan down and dusts off her hands. Things speed up, Sasha sees Tegan drop down and hooks her up for a body scissor clutch! TWO, and the two reset. They go again, Tegan backslides, TWO! Sasha swings into a waistlock but she switches. Shotzi tags in and Tegan bucks Sasha off to drop toehold her down! Shotzi Oklahoma Rolls, TWO! Sasha scrambles away and tags to Bayley.
Bayley and Shotzi circle, Shotzi rushes Bayley but Bayley gets away. Bayley comes back and kicks Shotzi low, then clubs her down. Bayley whips Shotzi to ropes but Shotzi holds them to stop herself. Shotzi baits Bayley in and uses the ropes to snap Bayley down. Shotzi kicks Bayley, backslides, but Bayley spins out, only for Shotzi to cradle counter! TOW, and Bayley waistlocks Shotzi to spin her for a headlock. Shotzi pops out but Bayley whips her to a corner. Shotzi goes up and over to roll Bayley up, ONE and Bayley KNEES Shotzi down! The alumni have the advantage while NXT goes to break.
NXT returns and Bayley has Tegan down now in a trapped arm chinlock. The crowd rallies but Bayley knees Tegan in the back. Bayley brings Tegan up but Tegan stomps Bayley’s foot! Tegan uppercuts but Bayley whips Tegan into buckles. Bayley rams her shoulder in over and over, then rolls back for wacky waving, only for Tegan to elbow her back! Tegan SLAPS Bayley on the back and heads for her corner. Bayley pulls Tegan away from Shotzi by her hair, only for Tegan to break free and HEADBUTT! They both fall down and the crowd fires up! Bayley and Tegan crawl, hot tags to Sasha and Shotzi! Shotzi dodges, hits Bayley, goes up and over Sasha then rolls to come back with a corner splash! Shotzi rolls Sasha out to then hit the SLING-DOG! The crowd fires up with Shotzi as she knees and rolling elbows! QUESTION MARK KICK! Shotzi snap SAIDOS Bayley down! Cover, TWO!!
Sasha gets to the apron but Shotzi builds speed. Shotzi dropkicks but Sasha dodges, and Shotzi slips through the ropes to land on her feet. Sasha apron METEORAS! Both crash down but Sasha drags Shotzi back into the ring. Cover, TWO!! Sasha is losing her cool but she drags Shotzi up to tag Bayley. Bayley hits Tegan down then whips Sasha in, but Shotzi dodges the corner Meteora! Sasha knees buckles and Bayley hurries after Shotzi. Bayley puts Shotzi in a corner but Shotzi boots back to then headscissor Bayley into buckles! Tag to Tegan, STEREO CANNONBALLS! Bayley flops out of the ring but Sasha runs at Tegan. Tegan puts Sasha on the apron and choke grips, to CHOKE SLAM Sasha onto Bayley!
Tag to Shotzi and Tegan helps her go up, up and FLY! Double crossbody at the ramp! Shotzi howls right over the champions then gets Bayley up and in. She brings Bayley up, has help from Tegan for the SLICED BREAD! Cover, but Sasha barrels into Tegan and breaks it up! All four women are down but the crowd is thunderous! Teams regroup and hot tags to Tegan and Sasha! Sasha and Tegan fire off fast and furious fists on each other! Tegan ROCKS Sasha then brings her up to whip to the corner. Sasha goes up but Tegan blocks the headscissor for an Electric Chair! Tag to Shotzi and she climbs up. Sasha slips off to POST Tegan! Shotzi still missile dropkicks! Cover, TWO to the ghost pin, TWO! But Sasha gets the BANK STATEMENT! The crossface is on deep! Shotzi pries the hold apart, gets the arms, CATTLE MUTILATION!!
Bayley runs in with a chair but Tegan stops her! The ref spots Tegan with the chair and reprimands her. Bayley uses the distraction to flip Shotzi off the submission! Sasha gets the Bank Statement back, and Bayley tackles Tegan! Shotzi taps, Sasha and Bayley win!!
Winners: Bayley & Sasha Bank, by submission (still WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions)
The “role models” show everyone how to cheat just right, and that keeps the belts with them! Will they be able to do the same to the IIconics this coming Monday Night Raw?
But wait! Io Shirai attacks?! The Evil Genius and NXT Women’s Champion missile dropkicks Bayley down, then German Suplexes Sasha! Shirai gives Bayley a Shinkansen meteora, then does the same for Sasha! The best friends regroup outside, and Shirai fakes them both out! “This is MY NXT!” Shirai defends her home, but Bayley and Sasha claim they are the reason she has a job! Is there something much bigger brewing between the entirety of the WWE Women’s Division?
What a great episode! Sandwiching the episode between the tag title matches was a great move, and Imperium VS Breezango was great stuff, even with the other teams showing up. But given the overbooking, naturally Imperium retained. Though, I do feel like Breezango was going to lose either way, because it just doesn’t feel right yet. I do feel NXT is building its way back to a huge multiple team match. The Undisputed Era is always in the running, and as I started to hope, Lumis wants to team with Dream. Dream turned down the offer for now, but I’m pretty sure something moves him to agree to the partnership. The Undisputed Era had a great “therapy” sketch, all four guys have great senses of humor, and it’s always good to see Kyle again. Priest VS Dain was a really good match and a really good win for Priest to rebound with. Priest’s story with Grimes has escalated, and their match next week is going to be really good.
I like the intermingling in stories where Dain is used to point out drunken Robert Stone for the sake of Aliyah’s story. That fake barfing was definitely something unique, and this definitely isn’t how I saw Aliyah finally becoming Stone’s client. Dakota beating Kayden was a given with Raquel by her side. I’m thinking they have a tag team match to settle things, but I feel like Dakota and Raquel still win that. With WWE finally turning the corner on the Women’s Tag Division, it’s good to see teams forming and getting stronger. Maybe one day, Dakota and Tegan cross paths again as they face each other with the tag titles on the line. It’d really bring their story full circle as a team that wanted to have such titles together, only for it to end up like this. There’s also a lot of interweaving stories when it comes to Karrion Kross. Bronson Reed calls him out given that attack three weeks ago, and that will be an interesting approximate to what will surely be Keith VS Kross at some point.
Obviously, I love the big news of the North American Championship Triple Threat that leads to an NXT Winner Takes All. If Kross is after Keith because of the smashed hourglass, sadly time has run out on Keith’s reign. We’ve gotten so much Gargano VS Cole already, I really hope it’s Balor adding the North American title to his legacy, and then giving us a battle of the two greatest NXT Champions ever to finally determine the undisputed best ever. The Women’s Tag main event was great stuff, but sad to say, Bayley and Banks were always going to win. For one, they have a match with the IIconics on Raw to bring that story full circle.
But the great surprise was Shirai going after Bayley and Banks! I really hope that, with Becky Lynch becoming a mother and the grand design for the WWE Women’s Division changing, we get a strange mash-up where three of the Four (NXT) Horsewomen find themselves up against some other great trio *cough* Shirai and Kabuki Warriors */cough* in an epic Six Woman for SummerSlam. It works as it’d involve all past and present champions from across all three brands, with the heart of it being about their respective reigns in NXT.
My Score: 9.3/10
Mitchell’s WWE 205 Live Results & Report! (4/9/21)
205 Live nostalgia, anyone?
The Cruiserweight Division looks back before moving forward!
Now that there is ONE TRUE Cruiserweight Champion, the division moves forward. But with that, we also take a look back at some classic title matches!
- WrestleMania 34, WWE Cruiserweight Championship Tournament Finals: Cedric Alexander VS Mustafa Ali; Alexander wins and becomes the new WWE Cruiserweight Champion.
- WrestleMania 35, WWE Cruiserweight Championship: Buddy Murphy VS Tony Nese; Nese wins and becomes the new WWE Cruiserweight Champion.
- TakeOver 31, NXT Cruiserweight Championship: Santos Escobar VS Isaiah “Swerve” Scott; Escobar wins and retains the title.
PLAY BY PLAY
Nigel McGuiness opens the show!
“On the heels of the instant classic ladder match between Santos Escobar and Jordan Devlin, welcome to 205 Live!” Tonight, we revisit some of the very best Cruiserweight title matches of all time! And not many come better than the WrestleMania 34 showdown!
WWE Cruiserweight Championship Tournament Finals: Cedric Alexander VS Mustafa Ali!
Months before April 8th, 2018, this title had been vacated and a tournament had been put in place! Before they were #PRIMED and the (former) leader of Retribution, they were the Heart and Soul of 205 Live! The then 205 Live General Manager, Drake Maverick, stands with the title belt to watch as theses two finalists battle it out for that very prize!
The bell rings and we begin. The fans are thunderous for them as they high-five and circle. Ali gets the waistlock but Alexander the standing switch and slam. The fans cheer for “Both These Guys!” while Ali gets up and puts on a headlock. Alexander lifts but Ali holds on. Alexander powers out, they collide, Alexander shoulders Ali down on the rebound. He wants Ali to show that heart, and they speed up. Ali headscissors Alexander and then dares Alexander to show the soul. They tie up and go against the ropes and into a corner. Neither man backs down until the referee separates them, then Ali shoves Alexander.
Alexander shoves back and dares Ali to hit him. Ali does with a chop, so Alexander responds with a kick. Alexander whips but Ali kicks him back, so Alexander rolls under and headscissors and dropkicks Ali down. Cover, TWO! Alexander puts Ali right in an armlock, but Ali works his way up and out. Ali whips but Alexander reverses, flapjack dropkick! Alexander staggers, Ali runs in but Alexander puts him on the apron to block a kick and hit a kick. Ali goes down, Alexander builds speed and FLIES! Down they both go, but Alexander is up first. He puts Ali in the ring, covers, TWO! Alexander keeps on Ali with a rear bearhug. Fans rally while Ali endures the squeeze.
Ali gets up and fights out of the hold, rocking Alexander with a forearm. Alexander responds with a running European Uppercut! He whips Ali corner to corner then throws him with a big back body drop. Cover, TWO, but Alexander keeps his cool as he puts Ali back in the bearhug. Ali endures the squeeze while fans rally again. Ali gets up and fights back but Alexander knees low. Alexander chops Ali, then brings him up for a suplex, but Ali slips out. Alexander knees low again, then runs, but into Ali’s lariat. Ali starts to rally and chop, but Alexander reverses the whip. Ali slides to a stop, and intercepts Alexander with a ROUNDHOUSE!
Alexander staggers, Ali rolls in for the facebuster! Cover, TWO! Ali brings Alexander up, but Alexander blocks and counters with a EuroUpper. Ali yanks his waistband and counters a kick with a kick! He runs, but into Alexander’s Spanish Fly! Both men are down and fans build to a rally. Alexander gets up while Ali gets to a corner. Alexander runs in, but into Ali’s boot. Ali hops up, tornado DDT blocked! Alexander hangs Ali up on the ropes, then catches his breath before climbing up to join him. Fans anticipate something, and Ali resists. They brawl on the top rope, but Alexander gets the better of Ali, only for Ali to almost send Alexander tumbling down with his counter.
Ali and Alexander brawl more while trying to stand up, Ali hits Alexander with a SUPER SPANISH FLY! Even John Cena watching from the audience is stunned seeing that! Cover, TWO, and Ali can’t believe it! He shakes his head as he watches Alexander flounder about. Ali brings Alexander over to a corner but Alexander knows what that means and resists. Ali kicks Alexander, then climbs, but Alexander gets up to throw him off! Maverick and the referee check on Ali after his crash landing, but Ali is still good to go. Alexander waits as the count begins, but Ali dares Alexander to finish him. Alexander takes the bait, he puts Ali in the ring and covers, TWO!
Alexander gets frustrated, but tells Ali it’s already over. Ali shakes his head, it’s not over. Alexander kicks Ali and then stomps away in a rage! He yanks Ali up, back suplex lift but Ali slips out! Ali hits the Reverse-Rana! Alexander is dazed, and Ali gets going. Ali hops up, flying tornado DDT! Alexander lands in a drop zone! Ali goes up, and hits the 0-5-4! Cover, ROPEBREAK! Alexander survives with a foot on the ropes! Ali shouts for Alexander to stay down before he stomps him back. Ali climbs up again, 0-5-4 FLOPS as Alexander moves! Alexander scrambles to his feet while Ali drags himself back up. They run at each other, Alexander’s big back elbow rocks Ali, but he still gives another.
Alexander tells Ali “This is enough!” But clearly, it isn’t, and the third back elbow flips Ali over! Alexander lifts Ali up, for the LUMBAR CHECK! Cover, Alexander wins!!
Winner: Cedric Alexander, by pinfall (NEW WWE Cruiserweight Champion)
The Carolina Kid didn’t want to go that far, but he had no choice but to break the Heart of 205 Live. More importantly, Alexander finally proves he can win the big one! Drake Maverick personally presents the belt to Alexander, and the true celebration begins! The Age of Alexander would go on for quite a run, before running into an Aussie Juggernaut, who is featured in our next match!
Nigel McGuiness introduces the next match.
We fast forward an entire year to WM35, and Nigel was again there to see Tony Nese in his home state taking on the Australian Sensation, Buddy Murphy, in another incredible Cruiserweight kickoff to the Showcase of the Immortals!
WWE Cruiserweight Championship: Buddy Murphy VS Tony Nese!
The Aussie Juggernaut proved himself against some of the best in the Cruiserweight Division, from Cedric Alexander to Mustafa Ali to three opponents at the same time. And on the Grandest Stage of Them All, he went toe-to-toe with the Premier Athlete, a man who is a parallel to him in physique, a man who used to be his friend, and a man he betrayed over the greed for this title! But Nese had homefield advantage, and it came in handy!
The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and we begin this battle of Body Guys!
Murphy runs right at Nese but Nese dodges the knee trigger! Nese fires off furious hands then counter punches. Murphy boots then goes up and over, but Nese keeps up to trip him up! New York fires up with their hometown kid, but Murphy dodges the triangle moonsault. Nese lands on his feet to slingshot and somersault to rock Murphy with a left! Nese puts Murphy in but has to push Murphy away on the top rope. Murphy comes right back but Nese resists the fireman’s carry. Nese fights back but still gets a gut buster drop on the buckles! Murphy checks his teeth while we go picture in picture.
Murphy stomps a mudhole into Nese but backs off at 4. Nese staggers up but Murphy is on him with a snapmare. Murphy swiftly kicks then covers, TWO! Murphy wraps Nese up in a chinlock but Nese endures. New York rallies behind Nese as Murphy shifts to a stretch. Murphy drives his elbow in again and again then wraps the chinlock back on. Nese fights his way up, we return to single picture as Murphy wrangles him back down. Murphy cranks Nese’s neck and leans his weight on him. Murphy’s eye is bloody but he ignores it while holding Nese down. Nese powers up and bumps Murphy off buckles. Murphy holds on but Nese bumps him again.
Murphy is still caught so Nese tries again, but Murphy uses that to throw Nese into buckles. Nese staggers into Murphy’s grip, tornado DDT denied with a snap suplex into the buckles! Murphy is down and Nese crawls to the opposite corner. Both men stand slowly, but Murphy walks into Nese’s elbow. Murphy comes back again but gets a haymaker! Nese rocks Murphy again, then again! Nese counter punches and snapmares to a facebuster. He runs, hits a knee lift and a heel kick! Murphy flounders to a corner while Nese nips up and fires up! New York fires up with him as he runs in for a big back elbow. Nese keeps moving but Murphy throws him to the apron.
Murphy turns around to counter and rock Nese, then climbs up for a suplex chance. Nese sweeps the legs and rocks him with a roundhouse, DRAPING triangle moonsault! Cover, TWO! Murphy survives, but Nese keeps his cool. Nese drags Murphy up for a whip but Murphy holds the ropes. Nese tries again but Murphy holds on. So Nese mule kicks Murphy into a whip. Murphy reverses but Nese slips under, pump handle but Murphy slips out. Murphy boots Nese away! He hops up but Nese SHORYUKEN! Nese climbs up to join a dazed Murphy, but Murphy resists a superplex. Murphy bumps Nese on a buckle, then sunset flips over. Nese denies the powerbomb but gets the SUPERKICK!
Murphy brings Nese out, AK-DDT! Cover, TWO! Nese survives but Murphy keeps his focus. Murphy drags Nese up by his hair and prepares the pumphandle. Nese victory rolls through, TWO! Murphy fireman’s carry to the TKO knee to knee trigger! Murphy suplexes but Nese slips out and shoves. Nese hits a REVERSE-RANA! Both men are down and New York cheers for this kickoff to the kickoff! Nese and Murphy get to opposite corners. Both men slowly stand as fans rally up. Nese and Murphy bob ‘n’ weave but Murphy gets his strike fest. Nese dodges the knee and goes Matrix to mule kick! Knee lift and roundhouse but Murphy jumps the sweep for buzzsaw, mule kick, but runs into Nese’s left forearm!
Nese runs but fakes Murphy out for an elbow. Murphy rebounds to LARIAT Nese off his feet! Murphy keeps going, but Nese back drops, to a VERTABREAKER! Cover, TWO!! Nese cannot believe Murphy survives! Murphy crawls to a corner but Nese pursues. Nese runs side to side but Murphy bails out, so Nese FLIES! The flop takes Murphy out and New York fires up as Nese puts Murphy in. Nese climbs up high, 450 splash! Cover, TWO!! Murphy survives again and Nese is beside himself. Murphy gets back to a corner and Nese brings down the knee pad. But Murphy grabs Nese’s leg, so Nese stomps a mudhole into him. Nese runs but into a KNEE TRIGGER!
Murphy pump handles, Murphy’s Law!! Cover, ROPEBREAK!! Nese still lives! Murphy is shocked but then he gets an idea. Nese is in the corner, and Murphy brings down his knee pad. Murphy runs side to side, but Nese SUPERKICKS him! German Suplex into buckles! PREMIER KNEE!! Cover, NESE WINS!!
Winner: Tony Nese, by pinfall (NEW WWE Cruiserweight Champion)
The unstoppable HAS been stopped! The Premier Athlete was the Juggernaut’s kryptonite, and now he is the new champion! We know the Premier Era ended with a Triple Threat involving Akira Tozawa and Drew Gulak, and the title itself would be integrated into the NXT system, eventually leading it to where it is today! As such, we relive a highlight of the NXT Cruiserweight Championship era!
Nigel McGuiness returns again for another match introduction.
The Cruiserweight title didn’t just make it to WrestleManias, it finally made it to NXT TakeOver thanks to Santos Escobar and Isaiah “Swerve” Scott!
NXT Cruiserweight Championship: Santos Escobar VS Isaiah “Swerve” Scott!
The year 2020 was certainly a mess, and the Irish Ace being isolated in the UK further complicated how this division worked. El Hijo del Fantasma won the “interim” title at the end of the Cruiserweight Championship Round Robin finals, with some controversy to it, but there was one man who did defeat him along the way! Swerve got his shot but was screwed over by El Legado and a loaded lucha mask! Swerve wanted revenge, but that is always hard to come by!
The introductions are made, the title is raised, and the Cruiserweight Division finally gets to TakeOver!
Escobar and Swerve circle as the crowd rallies up already. They approach, tie up, and Escobar gets the arm. Swerve hooks a leg to trip Escobar, cartwheels over but Escobar arm-drags Swerve away. Escobar runs but Swerve dodges, Escobar huricanranas but Swerve handsprings through! Swerve says HE is Cruiserweight wrestling, and that upsets Escobar. Escobar rushes Swerve, Swerve dodges and Eddy Gordo headscissors Escobar away! Escobar gets up and Swerve smirks. Swerve then trips Escobar, turns him over with leg hooks and goes to dead lift, but Escobar victory rolls through, TWO! Escobar sweeps the legs to cover, ONE! Swerve sweeps the legs to cover, ONE! The two stand off in fighting stances and the crowd loves it!
Swerve blocks Escobar’s punch, fakes him out to mule kick, and then runs, into a forearm! Escobar runs into a monkey flip! Escobar just barely gets his feet under him but Swerve handsprings and MOONSAULTS him down! The crowd is fired up as Swerve watches Escobar flounder. Escobar leans against the post, and pulls down the crossbar cover. Swerve gets in the ring to refresh the ring count, and he goes to the corner to CORKSCREW SENTON! Down goes Escobar and the crowd fires up again! Swerve puts Escobar in the ring but Escobar bails out the side. Swerve runs and FOSBURY FLOPS Escobar down! The fans are thunderous as Swerve is showing he can do it all!
Swerve puts Escobar in, covers, TWO! Escobar bails out again but Swerve pursues. Swerve drags Escobar up to go after the arm. Swerve wraps the arm around the very crossbar Escobar exposed! He’s showing Escobar what bending the rules gets you as he bends the arm! The ring count is at 7 but Swerve puts Escobar in at 8. Cover, TWO! Swerve grows annoyed with Escobar and he pulls Escobar around to go after the bad arm! Escobar endures as Swerve pulls it way back to drop down on it! Escobar puts a leg on the rope, Swerve stomps him anyway! Swerve brings Escobar up to Northern Light takedown into an ARMBAR! Short Arm Scissor, even, as Escobar resists.
Escobar gets legs under the ropes, Swerve lets off but goes to the apron. Swerve drags Escobar up to hotshot the arm! Fans rally as Swerve brings Escobar up again, but now Escobar hotshots Swerve! And KICKS him off the apron! Escobar runs and builds speed to DIVE! ARROW FROM HELL!! Swerve gets sent into the fencing, Escobar puts Swerve back in, covers, ONE?! Escobar is furious that Swerve kicks out so he KICKS Swerve in the face! Escobar waits for Swerve to stand and he LARIATS Swerve back down! Swerve gets to a corner, Escobar runs and DOUBLE KNEES! Escobar puts Swerve up top and SLAPS him!
Escobar climbs up and SUPER STEINERS! Then somersault and elbow drop! Cover, TWO! Swerve still lives and the fans stay fired up! Escobar stomps away on Swerve at the ropes but the ref counts. Escobar stops at 4 because he still doesn’t want to be disqualified. Escobar stands Swerve up and tells him, “Yo soy Lucha Libre!” Escobar SLAPS Swerve, kicks him, and says maybe if he spits in Swerve’s face will make him understand. Escobar reels back but Swerve puts a hand on Escobar’s mouth! No spit flies, but the fists do! Escobar clubs Swerve, reels him in, but Swerve frees himself to ROCK Escobar! And again! Swerve fires off heavy haymakers in the corner!
The ref counts, Swerve stops at 4 to throw Escobar down, for a DISCUS! The crowd is thunderous as Escobar flounders up. Swerve runs in to uppercut! Swerve snapmares Escobar for the falling EuroUpper! Escobar bails out but Swerve BOOTS him from the apron! And then again! Escobar goes down in a heap, Swerve puts him in, slingshot to somersault, ROLLING THUNDER SHOT! Cover, TWO!! Escobar survives but Swerve doesn’t lose focus. Swerve aims from the corner, hops up again and waits for Escobar to stand. Escobar is up but he climbs up to join Swerve! So Swerve slips under, only for Escobar to kick him away. Escobar turns around, Swerve dropkicks the legs out! DRAPING DDT! Cover, TWO!!
Escobar survives again but Swerve grits his teeth. Swerve drags Escobar up with a half nelson but Escobar gets the ropes! The ref counts, El Legado returns! The ref stops Wilde from getting in, Escobar shoves Swerve and Mendoza trips him up! Gut wrench, SHOULDER BREAKER! Cover, TWO!! Swerve survives the screw job attempt! Escobar goes to the apron to follow Swerve, runs side to side, but into a pop-up that puts Escobar on the ropes! Escobar is stuck on his fantasma, Swerve throws haymakers! Swerve then hops up, and STEINERS Escobar onto Legado!! They catch him, help him up, but here comes ASHANTE “THEE” ADONIS!!
From what’s been happening on 205 Live, Adonis isn’t a fan of Legado del Fantasma, either, and he goes up to TORNILLO! Adonis wipes out Mendoza and Wilde! The crowd is thunderous as Escobar is in shock! Adonis and Swerve run off the henchmen before Swerve hurries into the ring. Escobar runs over, gets a back elbow, and Swerve goes up and in to somersault, into a CALF KICK! Fireman’s carry, PHANTOM DRIVER!! Cover, TWO!??! How?!!? Escobar doesn’t know how, but the crowd is electric! Escobar is fuming as he stomps away on Swerve over and over! Escobar drags Swerve back up, suplexes, uno amigo! Then a roll over, dos amigos!
Fans boo, they don’t think Escobar is worthy of Eddie Guerrero but he still hits all three amigos! Escobar goes up top, FROG SPLASH FLOPS!! Swerve evades and denies Escobar his Latino Heat! Swerve gets the arm, POP CULTURE!! Escobar clutches his arm but Swerve gives him a HOUSE CALL!! But that’s not it, Swerve goes up for the 450 SPLASH!! Cover, TWO!?!?! Escobar survives all of that and Swerve is losing his mind! The crowd hopes they “Fight Forever!” because “This is Awesome!” But this will end somehow, and Swerve drags Escobar up. Escobar flounders, throws Swerve out and hurries back up.
Swerve hurries after him, half nelsons him, but Escobar holds ropes for dear life! Escobar pushes Swerve back, Swerve falls and hits the bare crossbar!! It comes into play after all!! Escobar drags Swerve in, brings him up, underhooks and lifts, BUTTERFLY FACEBUSTER ACROSS THE KNEE! Cover, Escobar wins!!
Winner: Santos Escobar, by pinfall (still NXT Cruiserweight Champion)
So much fight from Swerve, and he even had a new ally fight against the minions, but Escobar always has a back-up plan! And he would continue to rule over the division in this way, even to the point of having Wilde & Mendoza help at TakeOver: Stand & Deliver! Will the tyrannical Emperor of Lucha always have this crown?
Nigel McGuiness returns once more to wrap up the show.
It has been a great experience on 205 Live to see some of the greatest title matches of all time. But speaking of great title matches, that makes you think of great champions. Just last night at TakeOver: Stand & Deliver, Escobar proved he is a great champion by winning the Cruiserweight Championship Unification Ladder match! Relive that and both nights of TakeOver on Peacock in the US and the WWE Network everywhere else! But what will see now in the future was we continue in the Era del Fantasma?
Recap episodes are always fun for looking back, but also because it’s super easy for me to cover them since it’s just copying, pasting and editing. I like the three they selected, basically giving us a look back at the last three years of the Cruiserweight Division, but it also makes us see how far 205 Live has dropped off in the WWE because Alexander, Ali and Murphy were so awesome in 205 Live. Nese is still here but more for lack of WWE/NXT not giving him more to do. Admittedly, Murphy has dropped off on RawDown, too, but at least WWE has tried with him. I almost feel like worst case scenario for Murphy is to come back and be the Aussie Juggernaut again. Escobar’s a beefy Cruiserweight, so is Murphy, let’s get something like that going again.
I am also disappointed, because it was advertised that we’d get a special look at Escobar VS Devlin, but that wasn’t there. I couldn’t have gone through the content too fast, a segment like that wouldn’t be just a few seconds long. Maybe there was another “right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing” moment and that information was put out without knowing what the final episode would look like. I wouldn’t mind if they gave us that segment for the aftermath NXT on Tuesday, and encored it on next week’s 205 Live, but WWE/NXT needs to get 205 Live going like how it was when Ali, Murphy and Alexander were here.
My Score: 8.1/10
Andrew’s AJPW Champion Carnival Results & Match Ratings: 4.9.2021
All Japan’s Champion Carnival kicks off today! The Triple Crown Champion Suwama is in action as well as the Ace of the company Kento Miyahara! Check it out!
Now I haven’t kept close eyes on the product last few months, because personally, they weren’t grabbing my interest post Quarantine Comeback. But since my Puro Patronus Mathew Sarpraicone is having some computer issues, I guess I’m covering the first couple of these!
Let’s see how the tournament starts!
- Shuji Ishikawa vs Koji Doi: Ishikawa wins via Thesz Press @9:09 – ** ½
- Suwama vs Kohei Sato: Sato wins via German Suplex Hold @10:49 – ***
- Yuma Aoyagi vs Shinjiro Otani: Otani wins via Overhand Chop @9:51 – *** ¼
- Jake Lee vs Shotaro Ashino: Jake wins via D4C @3:44 – **
- Zeus vs Kento Miyahara: Zeus wins via Jackhammer @18:16 – **** ¼
Shuji Ishikawa vs Koji Doi
Doi is the least recognized name in the tournament this year, and last I was aware of his was during the closure of Wrestle-1. Most of his success has come in the tag team division, but he’s no real slouch. Interestingly, Ishikawa is the newest Gaora TV Champion, but also was tied heavily to Suwama and their Violence Giant tag team.
We see Doi come out fast trying to throw Ishikawa into the corners and take him off his base. Ishikawa towers over Doi, so Doi was underneath, literally and figuratively the entire match. As Ishikawa hit most of his signature spots, including the Mushroom Stomp from the middle rope, Doi had a moment where he locked in the Rings of Saturn; but Ishikawa is just too big.
As Doi tried to keep the pressure up, rope runs, big strikes, Murder Lariat attempts from Doi but Ishikawa stifles the surge with a Fire/Thunder Driver. They both stumble up, run the ropes a bit trading lariats and charges, Ishikawa jumps, hits a Thesz Press and manages to keep Doi down for the 3 count!
Suwama vs Kohei Sato
An early card match gives us the Triple Crown champion against one of his more recent challengers! Falling short for the Triple Crown a few months ago, Sato has a little bit to prove.
The match opens as a slugfest, Suwama gets the best of things and rides the power advantage over Sato for a long time. Sato is taller than Suwama but Suwama is more powerful and controlled the pacing. Things went to the outside and the former Violence Giant kept up to the name.
When the match came back in to the ring Suwama looks to try and finish things, goes for the Rolling Lariat, but it gets blocked. Sato starts fighting back, hits a Falcon Arrow for a near fall, and then Suwama starts looking like he’s in trouble. Suwama hits the Double Chop comeback, and tries a Powerbomb, but Sato blocks it, Sato goes for a Powerbomb, but Suwama blocks it. The power struggle is tangible, but Suwama seems to be losing some of the back and forth. Sato rocks Suwama, locks in the German Suplex, and hits the German Suplex Hold.
Kohei gets on the board and avenges his loss! Depending on how the tournament shakes out, Kohei might get another shot at the title in the future.
Yuma Aoyagi vs Shinjiro Otani
The veteran Otani is putting Yuma through the paces early. He’s side stepping Dropkicks and just kicking Yuma to prove a point. Yuma tries to fire back, and then Otani continues to push off certain moves and be funny.
Yuma does manage to take advantage of his youth, but when he goes for the disrespect by attempting the Bootwash, Otani fires, lays out the younger wrestler and hits the Wash. Yuma goes to the outside, and when he turns back to the ring, Otani charges and hits a running Bootwash straight to Yuma’s face.
As Otani takes the role of the cagey veteran punishing the Young Boy, Yuma tries to find ways to come back, but things Otani stays a little ahead of the younger wrestler. Yuma gets a close moment where he locks in End Game, but Otani fights to the ropes. Otani then backs the younger wrestler down, hits Dragon Suplex, then goes for another, but Yuma blocks. Otani counters the block with a lariat, then another Dragon Suplex but Yuma kicks out at 1! Refusing to stay down, Otani goes into his bag of tricks and hits Yuma twice with Hashimoto style Overhand Chops, to finally keep the younger man down.
Jake Lee vs Shotaro Ashino
So there is some fun history between these two when Ashino brought Enfantes Terrible over to AJPW and took JIN down a peg. But then recently, Jake stole the Enfantes members from Ashino and betrayed JIN. Ashino is looking to avenge the turnabout, but Jake is trying to craft his Carnival masterpiece.
Jake definitely has the swagger of an anime villain. He widens his arms like he’s conducting a symphony and moves slowly yet deliberately. Ashino starts quick, hitting a Drop Toe Hold and going to the ground game, but Jake stabilizes. Ashino again brings Jake down after successive German Suplexes and goes for the Ankle Lock! Jake has trouble navigating it for a while, but eventually finds the ropes.
Retreating to the corner, Jake sees the referee, Ashino charges, Jake uses the referee shield and starts taking advantage. A few direct blows to the head, Giant Killing to the back of the head, followed by D4C. Jake drags the referee back, picks up the win and leaves cackling. He’s limping heavily, selling the viciousness of the Ankle Lock even in a short match, but yeah, not what I expected.
The match was used to help build Jake’s new persona and possibly give Ashino a steeper mountain to climb. But the length and abrupt end was definitely not expected. Interesting, but also a little off putting.
Zeus vs Kento Miyahara
Zeus and Kento have had great wars. There was a point a few years ago where Kento was Zeus’ hurdle, but after beating him for the Tag titles, he then gathered momentum. Zeus has beaten Kento for the Triple Crown before, has beaten him in the Carnival, and this has been one of the best rivalries of the last few years in current AJPW. Kento is of course the current generation Ace, and everyone knows that; but given Zeus’ track record and Kento’s stagnation the last year since losing the Triple Crown to Suwama, we could get something interesting.
The match starts with their usual sarcastic respect to one another during breaks and outside the ring moments. Given that they’ve had 2 5 Snowflake classics in the last 3 years, this had a lot to live up to. But at no point did it feel like retreading, since they are both in different positions comparatively, this felt like a whole new book, not an additional chapter. Zeus landed a lot of power spots while Kento combated everything with his Knees.
Kento’s usual attack of Blackouts from different angles rocked Zeus pretty hard. Zeus ate a few, grabbed a Chokeslam and they both landed for a rest spot. Zeus drives Kento into a corner, goes for an Outside-In Brainbuster and starts trying to end things. Kento goes for the Shutdown Suplex, Zeus fires out, a few big Lariats and a Jackhammer from Zeus…AND ZEUS WINS!
Overall Score: 7.25/10
Now this wasn’t a bad start to things! Sure the Ashino/Jake Lee match did not go the way I expected, it definitely told enough of a story to prove it’s going somewhere. Shinjiro Otani gets a solid start to things, Shuji Ishikawa won a match he was supposed to and Zeus/Kento ended up being a solid day 1 main event.
Kento has started on the back foot before. I guess we get to see if he wins out until the Final Day, or if he has a larger struggle. Let’s check out the Day 1 Standings!
- Zeus: 1-0 – (2 Points)
- Shuji Ishikawa: 1-0 – (2 Points)
- Shinjiro Otani: 1-0 – (2 Points)
- Kohei Sato: 1-0 – (2 Points)
- Jake Lee: 1-0 – (2 Points)
- Kento Miyahara: 0-1 – (0 Points)
- Suwama: 0-1 – (0 Points)
- Yuma Aoyagi: 0-1 – (0 Points)
- Shotaro Ashino: 0-1 – (0 Points)
- Koji Doi: 0-1 – (0 Points)
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