The NEVER Openweight Six Man tournament is in round two!
NJPW pits Chaos against Los Ingobernables de Japon and Chaos against The Golden Aces and Master Wato! How do the finals take form?
NOTE: NJPW no longer wants to feed AXS TV now that it is with Anthem and Impact Wrestling. But never fear, I will cover NJPW in the spirit of AXS in providing the most important matches of the show.
- NEVER Openweight Six Man Tag Team Championship Tournament Semifinals: Los Ingobernables de Japon VS Chaos’ Kazuchika Okada, Sho & Toru Yano; Chaos wins and advances to the finals.
- NEVER Openweight Six Man Tag Team Championship Tournament Semifinals: The Golden Aces & Master Wato VS Chaos’ Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI; Chaos wins and advances to the finals.
PLAY BY PLAY
NEVER Openweight Six Man Tag Team Championship Tournament Semifinals: Los Ingobernables de Japon VS Chaos!
This Chaos trio is the Producer, the young shock master, and none other than the Rainmaker! Will they keep Bushi, Shingo Takagi and Sanada from getting the titles the Cold Skull says are his favorites?
The trios sort out and Yano talks some smack, but it is Sho who starts against Sanada. The fans rally already as the two circle. Sanada and Sho tie up, go around with waistlocks but Sanada gets a facelock. Sho slips out, Sanada keeps on him but Sho slips out again. They circle again, Sho gets the facelock, floats to a waistlock but Sanada rolls. Sho stays on him, half nelsons and rolls to the armbar but Sanada clasps hands. Sanada counters with a toehold but Sho uses his elbow to get a dragon sleeper. Sanada shrugs that off to crank on the foot, but Sho half nelsons again. Sho turns Sanada to get the mount and waistlock, then gator rolls him. Sho shifts to a cravat and cranks on the neck. Sanada fights up, Sho cranks harder, then snapmares, but Sanada handsprings through!
Sanada runs, sunset flips, but Sho armbars! Sanada rolls right back to Bow ‘n’ Arrow! Sho pops out to a cover, TWO! The fans cheer as the two stand off. Sho and Sanada watch each other, but back away to their corners. Yano tags in, and Bushi tags to meet him. Yano talks big as he dares Bushi to run, but then Yano rolls him up! TWO, Yano asks his team what happened. Bushi rolls Yano up, TWO! Yano kicks low then throws forearms. Yano runs but Shingo is in his way! Bushi rolls Yano up, TWO!! Yano asks what is going on here and then tags out to Okada. The fans rally and Yano claps along. Okada jumps in, but Bushi tags to Shingo. The Rainmaker and the Dragon circle and tie up. They’re in a deadlock but Shingo manages to power Okada back.
Okada turns things around and has Shingo on the ropes. Okada lets up, fakes the chop, but pats Shingo on the shoulders. Shingo gets riled up, but Okada kicks and headlocks him first. Shingo powers out, they collide shoulders, and Shingo rebounds to run Okada over! Fans fire up as Shingo drags Okada back up. Okada forearms but Shingo gives them back. They go back and forth with forearm after forearm, Shingo gets the edge! Shingo headbutts, runs but Yano cheap shots! Red Shoes reprimands, Okada whips, Shingo dodges to hit Yano back! Okada clubs Shingo then runs but Bushi cheap shots! Shingo drop toeholds Okada and Sanada hits a basement dropkick! Sanada hits Sho, too, and Bushi stomps away on Yano. Shingo drags Okada up to a chinbar and cranks on the neck.
Okada endures while Sho is sent into barriers and Yano is bumped off the apron. Shingo elbows away on Okada’s shoulder then brings him back up. Tag to Bushi and LIJ mugs Okada in the corner. Bushi turns Okada for a neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Bushi drags Okada back up, snapmares and chinlocks against the knee. Okada endures but Bushi also hooks his face! Red Shoes reprimands, Bushi lets go, but brings Okada up to bump off buckles. Tag to Shingo, Shingo rams his shoulder in over and over, then brings Okada out to suplex high and hard! Cover, ONE! Shingo keeps on Okada with an armlock, but the fans rally again. Okada fights up, Shingo wrenches but Okada throws forearms. Shingo still wrenches to the shoulder breaker!
Tag to Sanada, Sanada climbs and LIJ clubs Okada’s arm together! Sanada has Okada in a corner, wrenches and whips corner to corner, but Okada boots back. Sanada blocks that, trips Okada up, and fans cheer as he starts tying Okada up. Okada fights out of Paradise, Sanada kicks low and runs, but Okada FLAPJACKS! The fans rally as both men stir on the mat. Hot tag to Sho! Sho blasts LIJ’s corner then runs at Sanada. Corner clothesline, then a whip but Sanada reverses. Sho reverses back and kicks away to SUPERKICK Sanada down! The High Voltage combination has Sanada dazed, but Sanada still fights the German Suplex off. Sho clubs and runs, but Sanada elbows him down! Sanada standing moonsaults, but Sho dodges!
Sho waistlocks and dead lifts again, but Sanada resists. Sho still German Suplexes, but Sanada lands on his feet! Sanada elbows back then QUEBRADAS, but Sho gets clear to waistlock and slam Sanada down into the ARMBAR! Sanada scrambles, crawls, and gets the ropebreak with a foot! Sho lets go, but drags Sanada up to wrench to a shoulder breaker! And another! And another! Sanada drops to his knees but Sho aims at the arm. Sanada avoids the kick, whips Sho to a corner, but Sho dodges. Sanada tumbles out and springboards in but Sho gets clear. Sho runs into a scoop, dragon sleeper! But Sho powers out of Skull End, but Sanada slips down to get it again! Sho breaks free, dodges and spears, into a facelock!
Sanada goes to suplex but Sho lifts Sanada first! Sanada flails and suplexes back, to put Sho on the ropes for MAGIC KILLER! Both men are down, the fans fire up, and Yano returns to the corner! Sho crawls, hot tag to Yano! Bushi tags in and dodges Yano to enziguri! Bushi throws Yano out, builds speed, but Yano ducks down. Bushi stops himself and rolls back to taunt Yano. Yano runs in but Bushi kicks and whips him. Yano reverses, and goes to untie a buckle pad! Bushi rolls him up as the pad comes loose, TWO! Bushi kicks but Yano throws him down by his mask! Cover, TWO! Yano dodges Bushi, shoves him at Red Shoes, then rolls him up! Bushi rolls through to sit on the cover, TWO!! Bushi kicks low, whips but Yano reverses. Bushi boots back, hops up and leaps to missile dropkick! Bushirooni!
Shingo clobbers Okada and LIJ regroups. LIJ whips Yano corner to corner, then Bushi forearms! Sanada elbows, Shingo clotheslines! And DDT, to the basement dropkick sandwich! Cover, Okada and Sho break it! Shingo and Sanada throw them out and Bushi has Yano to himself. Bushi whips, Yano holds ropes and taunts, but Bushi dropkicks him out! Bushi builds speed, and DIVES, but Yano uses a Young Lion as a shield! Yano whips Bushi into railing! Yano then goes looking for something under the ring, and brings out spare tape! Not this again! Shingo stops Yano, takes the tape and tosses it, then ROCKS Yano.
Yano dodges Bushi and sends him into Shingo! The ring count hits 15 of 20 as Yano ties Bushi’s mask to rails! Yano hurries back in at 18, and the count hits 20!! CHAOS WINS!!
Winners: Chaos, by count out (advances to the finals)
Yano gets away with one! LIJ doesn’t get to go back to the titles, and Bushi’s mask strings have to be cut to free him! Will Yano, Okada and Sho be able to become champions with tactics like these?
NEVER Openweight Six Man Tag Team Championship Tournament Semifinals: The Golden Aces & Master Wato VS Chaos!
This Chaos trio is the Fierce Warrior, Stone Pitbull and Head Hunter! But can they conquer Kota Ibushi, Hiroshi Tanahashi and the Way of the Grand Master to become tournament finalists? Are we going to get Chaos VS Chaos?!
The trios sort out and Tanahashi again insists he start. Goto steps up for Chaos, and the fans already rally for The Ace and the Warrior as they circle. They tie up, Tanahashi headlocks and grinds, and holds on as Goto tries to power out. Goto pries at the hold but Tanahashi cranks harder. Goto powers out this time, to get his own headlock! Tanahashi fights out but Goto counters the hip toss to a hip toss! Tanahashi is right up but Goto fires off forearms. Goto whips corner to corner, Tanahashi elbows back then springboard crossbodies! Ishii runs in but Tanahashi dodges, and sends him into Ibushi’s dropkick! Hashi runs in but is sent at Wato, only to forearm Wato first.
Ibushi kicks Hashi and the Golden Aces double whip. Hashi holds ropes, Goto runs in but the Golden Aces dodge and double dropkick him down! Hashi runs but into a double hip toss! Wato runs in, builds speed and basement dropkicks! Ishii runs back in, but gets body shots, forearms and a ROUNDHOUSE! The fans fire up for the air guitars! Tanahashi coordinates the team and they bring Goto back up. Tag to Wato and he KICKS Goto in the chest! Goto staggers, Wato whips and back elbows, back hands, but gets run over! Goto tags Hashi but both Hashi and Ishii clobber the other corner! Goto whips Wato corner to corner then sends Hashi in to back elbow. Ishii runs in to clothesline, then Goto adds his own clothesline!
Goto feeds Wato to the double shoulder tackle! Ishii and Goto Penalty Kick sandwich! Hashi SUPERKICKS! Ishii and Goto intercept Tanahashi, whip and double CHOP him down, then Hashi basement dropkicks! Ibushi runs in but also gets double kicks. Chaos clubs away on Ibushi’s back! The fans rally up as Hashi has Wato to himself. Hashi runs corner to corner to CHOP Wato! Then he reels Wato in for another CHOP! Hashi whips Wato but Wato reverses to dropkick Hashi down! Fans cheer as both men are down. Wato stands and fires up to fire off kicks. Hashi ducks the back hand to CHOP! But Hashi runs into the sobat! Wato runs to basement dropkick and cover, TWO! Wato drags Hashi back up, and fires off KICKS!
Hashi eggs him on so Wato kicks from all sides. Hashi CHOPS so Wato KICKS, repeat! Hashi blocks the next kick to elbow the knee! But Wato comes back with a step-up knee! Wato runs but Hashi SUPERKICKS! Both men are down again as the fans rally up. Hot tags to Ishii and Ibushi! Ibushi and Ishii collide, Ibushi ducks the clothesline but Ishii ducks the roundhouse. Ishii waistlocks, Ibushi elbows but Ishii ducks. Ibushi blocks a clothesline, Ishii blocks a kick, but Ibushi ducks to waistlock. Ibushi ducks an elbow, Ishii catches a kick, Ishii spins Ibushi but Ibushi fakes him out to elbow from the other side! Ibushi whips, Ishii reverses but Ibushi dodges. Ishii dodges but runs into a drop toehold! Ishii ducks the Penalty Kick, avoids the moonsault, and the two stare down.
Ishii grabs Ibushi by the neck but Ibushi grabs Ishii by the neck back. They start throwing forearms back and forth! Ishii eggs Ibushi on but Ibushi gives it back. The fans rally as the forearms fly faster and faster! Ishii gets the edge as Ibushi wobbles, but Ibushi back kicks and chest kicks! Standing moonsault hits! Cover, TWO! Ibushi keeps his cool as the fans rally up. Ishii stands and Ibushi kicks him again. And again! Ishii eggs Ibushi on so Ibushi kicks again. Ishii catches it to throw a forearm but Ibushi forearms back. Ibushi throws more forearms but Ishii spins him for a suplex. Ibushi slips out, gets around Ishii and GERMAN SUPLEXES! Ishii rises and runs Ibushi over! But Ibushi staggers up, into Ishii’s spinning powerslam! Both men are down and the fans rally again!
Ishii tags to Goto, and he drags Ibushi up. Chaos double whips Ibushi but he dodges the clotheslines to DOUBLE PELE! All three are down now, and Ibushi heads for his corner. Hot tag to Tanahashi! The Ace fires up as he catches Goto’s kick to DRAGON SCREW! Tanahashi gives Ishii a DRAGON SCREW! Tanahashi gets Goto’s legs for a Cloverleaf! Hashi ROCKS Tanahashi but Wato springboard forearms Hashi down! Tanahashi drags Goto up and double whips with Wato. Wato whips Tanahashi in but Goto dodges! Goto LARIATS Wato, then runs to windmill kick Tanahashi! BIG back suplex! Cover, TWO! Goto keeps his focus as he and Hashi double whip Tanahashi. Hashi runs in to CHOP!
Hashi whips Tanahashi to Goto’s kick, and Chaos combines for the BLOCKBUSTER RUSSIAN LEG SWEEP! Cover, TWO!! Hashi and Ishii keep Wato and Ibushi out as Goto fireman’s carries Tanahahsi. Tanahashi fights out, kicks and runs but Goto follows to LARIAT! Ibushi ROUNDHOUSES Goto! Ibushi boots Ishii, ducks the clohtesline and SNAP RANAS! Goto and Ibushi collide with clotheslines but Goto comes back to CLOBBER Ibushi! Goto aims at Tanahashi, to Buzzsaw, but Tanahshi catches it! Goto HEADBUTT! Reverse G T R! But then, dragon sleeper, TRUE G- NO! TWIST ‘N’ SHOUT! Tanahashi keeps on Goto for a SECOND Twist ‘n’ Shout! Goto fights off the third, the fans rally up as the two fight for control. Goto suplexes, Tanahashi slips out to palm strike!
Tanahashi runs into the firemans carry! But Ibushi ROUNDHOUSES Goto down! Ibushi intercepts Ishii while Tanahashi crucifix pins Goto! Ishii barrels through to break it up!! Fans are fired up as the Golden Aces coordinate. Ibushi and Tanahashi bring Goto up, GOLDEN BLADE!! Tanahashi heads up top, Ibushi and Wato keep Hashi and Ishii out, but Goto avoids High Fly Flow!! Goto and Tanahashi are both down, Hashi is back on the corner! But so is Wato! Hot tags to the Head Hunter and Grand Master! Wato BOOTS Hashi, throws forearms over and over, then whips. Hashi reverses, Wato huricanranas! Wato runs at Hashi in the corner but Hashi dodges. Hashi comes back, spinning back kick! Hsahi hurries to suplex, to HEAD BUSTER! Cover, TWO!!
Wato lives but Hashi keeps his focus. Hashi drags Wato back up, reels him in, but Ibushi returns. Hashi pushes Wato aside to mule kick Ibushi, and Ishii German Suplexes Ibushi out! Chaos double whips Wato, mule kick and blindside lariat to CODE BREAKER and GERMAN SUPLEX! Hashi fires up as he drags Wato up. Hashi reels Wato in, lifts, RUNNING POWERBOMB! Cover, TWO!?! Wato survives but Hashi still has something to try. Hashi runs as Wato stands, HEAD HUNTER LARIAT! Cover, TWO?!? Hashi drags Wato up again, not done yet. Fisherman but Wato slips out and shoves Hashi into Ibushi’s boot! Goto runs Ibushi over but Tanahashi SHOTEIS! Tanahashi has Ishii, Ibushi missile dropkicks!
Hashi swings on Tanahashi but gets caught into chicken wings! ROUNDHOUSE SANDWICH! Wato heads up top with Hashi in the drop zone! But his corkscrew senton FLOPS as Hashi moves!! How did Hashi have the power to do that?! Wato slowly rises and fires himself up. Hashi also stands, Wato runs in but into a boot! Wato dodges Hashi to back kick and spinning roundhouse!! Hashi staggers around as Wato wrenches, tucks, GHOST PIN BOMB!?! Cover, TWO!?! Hashi survives whatever that just was and no one can believe it! Wato hits his boiling point and he brings Hashi up. Wato fires off strikes, and ROUNDHOUSES!
Goto returns, fireman’s carries Wato, SUPERKICK USHIGOROSHI! SLIDING LARIAT! Hashi tops it off with METEORA! Cover, but the Golden Aces break it!! Chaos throws them out as Hashi drags Wato back up. Hashi full nelsons, then pump handles, KARMA DRIVER!! Cover, CHAOS WINS!!
Winners: Chaos, by pinfall (advances to the finals)
We are! We ARE getting Chaos VS Chaos for the NEVER Openweight Six Man Tag Team Championships!! It’s a win-win as far as the faction goes, but which trio will be the golden one?
Despite the win, things are still very tense between Ibushi and Ishii. Tanahashi tries to keep the peace, Ibushi shakes hands and hugs it out with Goto and Hashi, but Ishii won’t let it go. Ishii CHOPS Ibushi! And again! Tanahashi tries to step in but Ishii CHOPS him, too! The Golden Aces step to Ishii but Hashi and Goto step in now. Red Shoes also tries to keep Ishii and Ibushi from continuing, but it also takes some Young Lions to help out. Will we see the Golden Star and the Stone Pitbull settle this regardless of where the gold goes?
After Ibushi and Tanahashi finally exit, Hashi gets the mic to speak. Hashi knows there’s just one more match in this tournament. “I know all about how difficult it is to face adversity.” These are uncertain times, and he’s been uncertain his entire career. He’s uncertain even now! But he vows to show us a dream come true! Remember these words after you see the finals: “Your life can change in an instant!” What happens when Chaos collides with Chaos in the Summer Struggle?
Wow! I did not expect any of this, and perhaps that is why NJPW did it! Chaos VS Chaos?! I really thought LIJ was getting in because those were their titles before being vacated, but I guess NJPW wants to start fresh in a lot of ways. Yes, Shingo has Suzuki coming for his singles title, as well as his limbs, but I would’ve thought they’d want him to be Mr. NEVER again. I also would’ve thought Golden Aces & Wato would win, and that match was definitely an incredible one, but Goto, Ishii and Hashi come out on top as three very strong veteran wrestlers. There are a lot of other things inside these great matches, such as Yano and Bushi now having issue, as well as Sho aiming at Sanada. Ishii and Ibushi even more clearly want to settle things 1v1, so that might be something we get during the G1 Climax that we’re still getting in September and October!
I feel like Okada’s team is the favorite, but that could be why Hashi’s team will end up winning, as it’s another surprise. Plus, Okada has his KOPW 2020 match with Yujiro Takahashi, so it’s not like he has nothing to do on the way to Jingu. NJPW is trying some different tactics in a time when the entire world has been different, so I commend them for that.
My Score: 8.7/10
Mitchell’s WWE Raw Results & Report! (1/18/21)
Will Raw be on fire tonight?
Will Alexa Bliss have a twisted surprise for the Raw Women’s Champion?
She gave Randy Orton a taste of his own medicine, but she might be hungry for something more! Will Alexa be ready for Asuka and earn herself a shot at the title?
- Charlotte Flair VS Peyton Royce; Charlotte wins.
- Xavier Woods VS Mace w/ Retribution;Mace wins.
- Six Man Tag: The Hurt Business VS Matt Riddle & The Lucha House Party; win(s).
- Asuka VS Alexa Bliss; wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
“Now is the time.”
Martin Luther King Jr’s dream lives on, but only if we live it. Do not judge by the color of one’s skin, but by the content of their character. We will reach the promised land together. #LongLiveTheDream.
Randy Orton speaks.
“There is a saying that people who fight fire with fire usually end up with ashes. Ashes of the one responsible for their affliction.” Orton wears a mask to cover his burned face. “The voices in my head have never been louder. Encapsulating my every thought, just like this mask encapsulates my face.” Orton held Alexa Bliss’ fate in his hands, yet showed a side of himself he didn’t know he had: compassion. Orton rewatches the footage for himself. The hatred he had for himself needed to be redirected, and he was ready to make Triple H “like a lamb to the slaughter, until she interrupted.”
It was only just last week that HHH was shockingly spirited away so that Alexa could throw a literal FIREBALL at Orton! “And now look at me. LOOK AT ME! This is the damnation I receive for showing compassion? I haven’t been able to sleep because every time I close my eyes, all I see is that ball of fire hurtling towards my face.” Orton seethes as he says “that inescapable feeling of the fire burning my flesh will never go away.” Whatever compassion was in him, it left with that inferno. Orton wears this mask to not only protect himself, but to shield everyone else from the horrors that he endured.
Orton watches himself from last week flail and writhe as he clutched his face in pain. “Despite the agony I felt that would mortify a lesser man, I consider myself… lucky.” Orton came away with just first degree burns and not much worse. He could’ve been disfigured forever! But Orton doesn’t blame Alexa. He blames THE FIEND! Orton already sent him straight to Hell. “There’s no doubt The Fiend is responsible for this. Alexa was merely the vehicle. And I know exactly what The Fiend wants. He wants to stop me from achieving the inevitable.” That is to say, winning the Royal Rumble again, going back to WrestleMania, and becoming a world champion.
Orton is sure everyone else in the locker room loved seeing his face burn, “knowing that their biggest threat may have just been eliminated from competing in the Royal Rumble match. But you could chop off all my limbs and it wouldn’t stop me from winning this year’s Royal Rumble match. Because despite my sickening affliction, I vow to remain in the Royal Rumble match. I can only compete as long as I can tolerate the pain, but the funny thing is… I enjoy the pain. It fuels my every move.” Orton has a match! Orton wants everyone to thank The Fiend when he burns their dreams to ashes and goes on to main event WrestleMania! He lights the match, watches it burn, then blows it out. Will this new, even darker Orton extinguish 29 other lights before going back to the Grandest Stage of Them All?
Ric Flair arrives at the ThunderDome, with Lacey Evans!
Lacey wants to hear some Four Horsemen stories but Charly Caruso comes over to ask about this “relationship” first. Lacey says that’s so nasty. This isn’t TMZ. This is beneath Charly! Charly is compelled to ask because Ric helped Lacey beat Charlotte Flair, his own daughter! Lacey says to show respect to the 16-time world champion, and a living legend. But to answer the question, there’s a reason Ric is the Dirtiest Player in the Game. He was just living up to that name. As far as the relationship goes, Lacey is simply learning from the greatest man to ever step in the ring. Now, they are going to go watch Peyton Royce knock the nasty Queen of her throne.
Charlotte Flair VS Peyton Royce!
But speaking of dirty, Peyton attacks Charlotte from behind at the ramp! They brawl, referees hurry to separate them but this match is going to happen, after the break!
Raw returns and the bell rings and Charlotte tackles Peyton to a corner! Then stomps away on her! The ref backs Charlotte off but she goes right back for more! She RAMS Peyton, RAMS her again, but Peyton sends Charlotte into buckles to fire stomps back! The ref counts, Peyton stops at 3 and brings Charlotte out to hammer away. Charlotte trips Peyton, gives some ground ‘n’ pound, then tackles her to ropes! They spill out of the ring and Charlotte CHOPS! And CHOPS! And CHOPS! Charlotte puts Peyton in but Peyton rolls out the far side. Charlotte pursues but Peyton kicks back, only for Charlotte to CLUB her, and bounce her off the desk!
Charlotte stalks Peyton around the way, they go back in the ring, then back out the ramp side. Another CHOP, CHOP and CHOP into the post! Peyton shoves Charlotte into the post, then into the ring! Cover, TWO! Charlotte is still in this but Peyton drags her around to drop elbows. Peyton puts on a thrashing chinlock but Charlotte endures. Charlotte fights up, arm-drags free, and CLOBBERS Peyton! Charlotte looms over Peyton, drags her up and bounces her off buckles. Charlotte bends Peyton against ropes, lets go at 3, and brings Peyton around for another buckle bump! Peyton dodges, Charlotte hits buckles, and Peyton throws Charlotte down by her hair! Cover, TWO!
Peyton is frustrated but she kicks Charlotte down and around. She pushes Charlotte to ropes, bumps her off buckles in return, then digs her boot into Charlotte’s face! The ref counts, Peyton lets off and bumps Charlotte off more buckles. Peyton whips corner to corner, Charlotte goes up and out to shoulder back in! Slingshot and roll up, TWO, but Charlotte ROCKS Peyton with a right! Charlotte blocks boots, has Peyton in the ropes, DRAPING NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! But now Ric makes his entrance?! Ric swaggers on stage and Charlotte is annoyed, because here comes Lacey in one of Ric’s robes!
Charlotte is confused as ever, but Peyton catches her with the HEEL KICK! Cover, TWO!! Peyton is furious that Charlotte survives and Raw goes to break.
Raw returns and Peyton goes to buckle bump but Charlotte blocks to CHOP! And O’Conner roll, TWO! Charlotte goes into buckles but she dodges to send Peyton back into buckles! Both women are down and Peyton crawls away. Charlotte gets up, checks her nose, and then goes after Peyton. Peyton jawbreakers, whips, but Charlotte holds ropes to KICK back! Peyton dodges to HEEL KICK back! Peyton runs but Charlotte puts her on the apron, but Peyton SCORPION KICKS! Peyton goes up, leaps, but Charlotte gets under! Peyton turns around into the backbreaker and BUCKLE SHOT! Cover, TWO!
Charlotte watches Peyton go to the apron, runs in and BOOTS her down! Charlotte dares Lacey to do something again, but no, Lacey stays in the back this time. Peyton drags herself up as the ring count is 8 and is in at 9, but gets stomped by Charlotte! Charlotte puts Peyton’s leg on the rope, then drops a knee, only to miss! Peyton mule kicks then hobbles away from her back hurting. She dodges Charlotte’s clothesline to elbow, kick and HEEL KICK, to then ENZIGURI! Cover, TWO!
Peyton is furious and she drags Charlotte up to suplex. Charlotte slips out to CHOP BLOCK the leg! Knee breaker after knee breaker, Charlotte shows no mercy! Charlotte steps through, Figure Four, to FIGURE EIGHT! Peyton taps, Charlotte wins!
Winner: Charlotte Flair, by submission
But she doesn’t let go! She wants Peyton to suffer on behalf of Lacey! Charlotte finally does let Peyton go, will Peyton even be able to team with Lacey now? Will anyone want to?
Matt Riddle crosses paths with The Hurt Business.
Riddle just wants to say hi but MVP doesn’t want to hear it. Does he wear this same lame outfit on the streets? Of course. Riddle lives his life free and untethered. And unkempt, it seems. Uncalled for, bro. But Riddle will take the high road. Of course he will. Riddle just wants to say he admires how nice they all dress. MVP is like Gordy Gecko, then there’s “Ceddy the Cheddy,” and Benjamin spending the Benjamins. And of course, who would ever call Lashley “Slobby Bobby.” Lashley handles this and the others head out.
Lashley tells Riddle that if it were him, he actually likes the flipflops. But he heard they’re bad for your feet. What? No they’re not. Lashley STOMPS one of Riddle’s feet, and says that proves his point. Riddle says Lashley will see this foot later, right up his ass! Will The Bro and his “brochachos” make the Hurt Business pay in their 3v3 later tonight?
Raw returns as Lucha House Party checks with Riddle.
Is he going to be okay for the match? Riddle says when he was in high school, his cousin ran his foot over with his truck, and Riddle was still able to go to prom. He’ll just tape it up. If he says so…
Xavier Woods VS Mace w/ Retribution!
Here he goes again on his own! Mustafa Ali says this is their time to strike. Kofi Kingston at home with a broken jaw isn’t enough, Ali wants to break his spirit, and that’s by breaking one of his most beloved friends! Ali prays Kofi can’t compete or even be in Elimination Chamber or WrestleMania. Then Kofi will feel what Ali did just one year ago! Will this revenge a long time coming be carried out by the menacing monster at Ali’s command?
Ali shouts at Woods about Kofi being a coward. Woods DECKS Ali for that and the ref has to keep Retribution back! Woods is ready for a fight but Raw goes to break!
Raw returns and the bell rings! Woods circles with Mace but is cornered! Mace keeps Woods from getting away but Woods CHOPS back, only for Mace to shrug it off. Woods and Mace go again, Woods CHOPS and fires off hands but Mace shoves him away. Woods kicks low, climbs up and throws more hands but Mace shoves him away again. Mace catches Woods with both hands and brings him out to center for a CHOKE SLAM! Cover, TWO!! Woods survives but Mace choke grips Woods again and dead lifts him to shove him to a corner! Mace runs in to elbow Woods down! Ali mocks Woods’ pain as Mace whips Woods and KNEES him in the back! Mace looms over Woods, covers, TWO!
Mace sits Woods up, pries on fingers and then clamps on for a neck wrench! Woods endures, Mace fish hooks Woods’ mouth, and Ali says Kofi doesn’t need to worry. Woods will break his jaw and be right next to Kofi tomorrow. Woods bites Mace’s hand! Woods mule kicks, CHOPS away, then kicks low to CHOP and CHOP again! Mace ROCKS Woods with the uppercut! Mace whips, Woods dodges and ducks to dropkick a leg out! Woods keeps on Mace with haymakers and elbows! Mace shoves Woods away but Woods CLUBS him! Mace shoves Woods but runs into a boot! HONOR- NO! Choke grip! Woods fights the grip, gets free, and ENZIGURIS!
Mace flops out of the ring but Ali shouts at him to get back in. Mace goes up, but Woods baseball slides under Mace to hit Ali! Woods hits Mace off the apron again but Ali tells them they stop this. They’re going to shut Woods down! Mace gets in, the other members run distraction, Woods SUPERKICKS but runs into a BOOT! Mace drags Woods back up, fireman’s carries, and SWINGING AIR RAID CRASH! Cover, Mace wins!
Winner: Mace, by pinfall
Retribution wins again, and Ali stands over Woods. “Tell Kofi, Retribution says, ‘Get well soon.'” Ali and his cohorts are laughing now, but will Kofi make a comeback to shut them up?
Backstage interview with Asuka.
She’s been invited to Alexa’s Playground, what does she expect? Asuka honestly doesn’t know. But even after seeing her set Orton on fire, Asuka isn’t afraid of Alexa’s dark side.
Andrew’s Impact Wrestling Hard to Kill Results & Match Ratings: 1.16.21
Three title matches, the return of Decay, Barbed Wire Massacre and a main event with Kenny Omega. Impact Wrestling’s Hard to Kill definitely sounds like it’s got a little bit of everything. Check out how it went!
So the news that made many people cry a few days ago, was that Alex Shelley would be out of the main event. He went out of his way to film a response/promo/apology so fans knew it was something non-pandemic related, so that was an effort that wasn’t necessary, though appreciated.
Aside from losing it’s “Dream Match” luster, we get Moose as a replacement, which could really work for the cold calculated persona he’s taken on after his EC3 encounter. We also get to crown Knockouts Tag Team champions for the first time in seven and a half years. Let’s also not forget, this could end up being Taya’s swan song from Impact, so we should expect a good match but no Wera Loca victory.
Let’s see if we get any surprises!
- Decay (Rosemary & Crazzy Steve) vs Tenille Dashwood & Kaleb: Steve wins via King Kill 33 @8:55 – * ½
- Old School Rules Match: Violent by Design (Joe Doering, Eric Young & Deaner) vs Tommy Dreamer, Rhino & Cousin Jake: EY wins via Piledriver @9:55 – ** ½
- Knockouts Tag Team Title Finals: Fire & Flava (Kiera Hogan & Tasha Steelz) vs Nevaeh & Havok: Kiera wins via Face the Music @8:40 – *** – TITLE CHANGE!!
- Ace Austin w/Madman Fulton vs Matt Cardona: Cardona wins via DQ @2:30 – N/A
- X Division Championship: Manik (c) vs Rohit Raju vs Chris Bey: Manik retains via Ole Cradle @13:50 – *** ½
- Knockouts Championship: Deonna Purrazzo (c) w/Kimber Lee & Susan vs Taya Valkyrie w/ Decay: Deonna retains via Venus de Milo @11:40 – *** ¼
- Ethan Page vs The Karate Man: Karate Man WINS…Fatality – 200 Stars
- Barbed Wire Massacre: Sami Callihan vs Eddie Edwards: Eddie wins via Diehard Flowsion @18:50 – *** ¾
- Moose, Rich Swann &Chris Sabin vs Kenny Omega, Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows: Kenny Omega wins via One Winged Angel @20:30 – ****
During the last few moments of the Countdown, Madison Rayne officially retired from wrestling and from Impact Wrestling. Not sure how long she’ll stay a house wife, but good for her. She did great to actually prove to people she was a decent wrestler since her run during the WOH tournament, she was a fun commentator, so good for her.
Decay (Rosemary & Crazzy Steve) vs Tenille Dashwood & Kaleb
The weird thing about this match was the dynamic between who was involved and what went on. Crazzy Steve showed a very high work rate in this match, with his strikes and moves looking fantastic. But Rosemary got exposed a bit on still being less than 100% with the knee and generally sloppy on a lot of spots.
Kaleb and Tenille definitely tried to add comedy and their quirky personalities, but the fact that we saw a lot of sloppiness, Steve working his ass off and just comedy spots or gimmick spots too often; this was a giant mess of a match. It also didn’t help that D’lo and Striker are still getting used to each other, so the announcing was distractingly bad.
It can only get better from here!
Old School Rules Match: Violent by Design (Joe Doering, Eric Young & Deaner) vs Tommy Dreamer, Rhino & Cousin Jake
This starts the same way every Tommy Dreamer match starts, with a brawl and weapon use. This wasn’t a terrible match, but it’s really not anything worth going deeply in to. EY did the flair corner to top rope spot, which ended with Dreamer hitting him with a cookie sheet. We had a Tower spot in the corner, with Joe Powerbombing a Suplex, and it landed right into Dreamer’s face.
Doering got to look like a beast when the entire team took the chairs to him, and he still fought back, ending up in control. Dreamer introduced tacks, then we saw the Signature/Finisher spam which ends with EY breaking up the pinfall and hitting Cousin Jake with the Piledriver.
Again, decent enough, but nothing really special.
Knockouts Tag Team Title Finals: Fire & Flava (Kiera Hogan & Tasha Steelz) vs Nevaeh & Havok
Oh, Brian Hebner is back for this match. Slightly surprising.
Kiera and Tasha try to start fast, but the bigger women over power the smaller team and throw them around a little bit. Havok beats up on both of them, Neavaeh comes in to keep up the momentum, but eventually Tasha and Kiera start making a comeback. We see Fire and Flava go for a lot of quick spots, fast tags and trying to spin around the larger women, but they just get taken for a ride more often than not.
It’s not until Kiera hits a High Round Kick, followed by Tasha with the Springboard Neckbreaker actually takes Havok off her feet. Nevaeh tries to make a save and get things back on track, but Tasha picks her leg, Havok gets wiped out after a great Super Kick from Kiera, Tasha and Kiera use some tandem attacks on Nevaeh, then Tasha slows down Havok as Kiera hits Face the Music and we have new Knockouts Tag Team Champions!
Ace Austin comes out to declare himself into the X Division Triple Threat to make it a 4 way! D’Amore comes out, says he can have a match, just not the title match. Matt Cardona comes out.
Ace Austin w/Madman Fulton vs Matt Cardona
Ace tries to go at Cardona before the ring jacket is off, but Cardona absorbs some offense and then fires back a bit. Fulton gets in the way quite often during this match, so the finish is a little telegraphed. But right as Cardona starts building momentum; Fulton slides in to cause the DQ.
Decent enough way to protect Ace and give Cardona quick win.
X Division Championship: Manik (c) vs Rohit Raju vs Chris Bey
Rohit went after Manik to try and prove his point that it’s TJP. Bey seemed dead set on finding a way to win, and as we expected in an X Division match; there were a lot of spots, but they all made sense. Rohit does manage to take off the mask, but TJP painted his face under the mask, so it still throws off Rohit. TJP strings together a few moves, goes for the Mamba Splash, but gets caught by Bey with a Cutter. Bey then hits a Double Art of Finesse, but his brief moment of not knowing who to pin, caused the pinfall breakup.
Rohit almost won the title back after his call back to hitting his Tiger Knee after a Mamba Splash but Bey kicked out. Haymakers get thrown, Rohit hits the Dragon Stomp on Bey, and looks to finish things, but TJP slides in for the style of Cradle he’s used a bit lately, and retains his title after a fun, hard fought match.
Knockouts Championship: Deonna Purrazzo (c) w/Kimber Lee & Susan vs Taya Valkyrie w/ Decay
Early on all of the seconds get kicked out, with the beauty of the situation being that Susan pulls out her phone and says she’s filming the whole thing. So Susan, really may be a middle aged transformation of Su Yung. Susan might as well be named Karen.
EVERYBODY has been ejected from ringside.
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) January 17, 2021
As we focus on the actual match, Deonna starts slowly picking apart Taya. Going after her left arm, then her left knee and just trying to apply submission and weaken different limbs. Taya was able to push back and have her own submission attempt moment. Taya went for an STF, but the submission game isn’t her wheelhouse.
Deonna was able to pick her apart, counter a pinfall attempt and keep Taya grounded long enough to work in some holds. The normal Fujiwara didn’t get her submit, so Venus de Milo followed up and Taya verbally submitted.
Ethan Page vs The Karate Man
Since this is cinematic or at least green screen, I won’t rate this as a real match. But it was amazingly entertaining. Dragon Ball Z references, Karate Kid, and Mortal Kombat references, it was just amazing.
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) January 17, 2021
Barbed Wire Massacre: Sami Callihan vs Eddie Edwards
Interesting pacing to get across the familiarity, twisted respect and love for punishment between these two. We saw Barbed Wire Tables, Chairs, Baseball Bats, Kendo Sticks and even an…N64 Controller!
Sami took a ton of punishment, but the story was basically playing with Eddie’s emotions to bait him into bad dives, and openings for Sami to move out of the way, or sneak in a barbed wire shot. Eddie hit a Blue Thunder Bomb on a barbed wire chair, Sami hit an Avalanche Piledriver through a barbed wire table, but none of this was enough. If anything, the Piledriver just pissed Eddie off.
Going for the callback that started it all, Sami tries to hit a Barbed Wire Chair into Eddie’s face with a Barbed Wire Bat, but Eddie hits a low blow to get a moment. Sami tries to bring himself up with a chair, Eddie hits the Boston Knee Party, then the Diehard Flowsion for the win!
Eddie hasn’t hit that Flowsion in a long time. I did appreciate Sami paying homage to Cactus Jack and Striker acknowledging Jun Akiyama and Mitsuharu Misawa on commentary though.
Moose, Rich Swann &Chris Sabin vs Kenny Omega, Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows
The early onset is interesting. Karl Anderson and Chris Sabin start off and there’s some solid technical counter wrestling, and it’s fast paced action. Moose and Gallows come in to do a big boy showdown which worked fairly well, where Swann and Omega had a brief lockup before the Brothers come in to start heeling it up.
We get a lot of Japanese tag stylings, from the triple team that Team Impact pulls off, to the way the Club breaks up any type of momentum with their own train attacks into the corner. Moose looked amazing in this match. He went toe to toe with everyone, pulled off great moves like a Standing Moonsault, leaped to the top rope for a Spanish Fly and was a really good teammate, regardless of his issues with Rich Swann. Hell Swann and Moose even hit a Doomsday Device variant together. Small aside, I did like seeing Chris Sabin pull off Cradle Shock, which just doesn’t happen often enough anymore.
Omega almost has the match one on Rich, but the only one able to break it up was Moose, and he did so. Omega went into V-Trigger spamming mode to wipe out Moose, rock Rich and then a One Winged Angel won the match for the Bullet Club former members.
Overall Score: 6.75/10
Well this started off pretty bad, but at least it built upwards. The main even had a lot of fun wrinkles which increased the storytelling, psychology and overall enjoyment of the show. Hell even when Callis nearly jumped into the ring to break up a pin on Kenny was a good little nugget.
As I said in the weekly coverage, this is probably Taya’s final match, or at least one of the last, especially since they logically moved Rosemary back to Decay with Crazzy Steve. Eddie and Sami had a hell of blood feud and it was nearly cathartic. Let’s also not overlook the fact that Tasha and Kiera actually won the Knockouts Tag titles. I almost thought they wouldn’t win just because they are so charismatic and attractive without the titles, where Havok and Nevaeh don’t exactly have electric personalities. But I’m ecstatic that Kiera finally has a title in Impact!
With the pretty awful start for the wrestling and the commentary, which put the show behind the eight ball; but it did recover fairly well. Not nearly as good as Genesis, but it managed to keep the stories rolling and end on an interesting note. A pretty good show after all was said and done.
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