SmackDown has a NEW WWE Universal Champion!
He may not be Brock Lesnar, but Roman Reigns IS the reigning, defending, undisputed WWE Universal Heavyweight Champion once again! And he will know who his Clash of Champions opponent is by the end of the night!
- Heavy Machinery VS The Miz & John Morrison; Heavy Machinery wins.
- WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships: Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax VS Bayley & Sasha Banks; Baszler & Jax win and retain the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships.
- WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender’s Fatal 4 Way: Matt Riddle VS Baron Corbin VS Sheamus VS
Big EJey Uso; Uso wins and will challenge Roman Reigns for the title at Clash of Champions.
PLAY BY PLAY
SmackDown opens with Roman Reigns!
The Big Dog and his new Advocate, Paul Heyman, make their way on stage, the Universal Championship held high over Roman’s head. Fans are divided between cheers and jeers as Roman and Heyman head to the ring. Heyman grabs a mic and says, “Just when you thought I was out, he pulled me back in.” And don’t make fools of yourselves pointing accusatory fingers thinking Heyman corrupted Roman. It is Roman “corrupting” Heyman. And why? Why would Heyman and Roman work together when Heyman was “thrown into the shark-infested ocean of obscurity, only to be rescued, saved and pulled onto the island of relevancy by this man?” The reason is that they did the same thing to Roman!
Heyman asks us, “What happened to the ‘thank yous’ and the appreciation?” The selfish executive decisions, the life threatening illnesses, and yet Roman over delivered. No one offered a thank you or appreciation. When he needed even just a little time off, what happened to Roman’s title? The Fiend? A fiend is not born to be champion, a fiend does fiendish things. A monster? A monster is not born to be champion, a monster does monstrous things. Imagine looking to a Fox News asking one of those two, “What’s it like being the biggest star in the WWE?” “Grrr!” Yeah, great choice. Those aren’t champions. “Roman’s reign as your champion has always been defined by what WWE purports itself to be built upon: Family, tradition, legacy, the responsibility of being a champion and the accountability of owning one’s actions as champion.”
Meanwhile, on Raw, they have a big Triple Threat to determine a challenger at Clash of Champions. Everything about Roman will be bigger, badder, better and more sensational and spectacular than anyone before him. Raw has a Triple Threat, so SmackDown will have a Fatal 4 Way! And the winner will be “the sacrificial lamb” to Roman at Clash. The names don’t deserve to be said by Roman or Heyman, the resumes will be ready by WWE’s Anderson Cooper, and “Carmella’s latest boyfriend” on commentary. “It goes like this. I’m gonna tell you this one time so you get it through your thick, unappreciative skulls.” Heyman gives a very slow and intense version to his introduction, as he is now the counsel to the Tribal Chief, the razing, defending, undisputed Universal Heavyweight Champion, Roman. Reigns!
Roman says he is a man of his word. He did what he said he would: he signed the contract, wrecked Fiend and Monster, and then left as THE WWE Universal Champion! And he promises that it doesn’t matter who goes to Clash, “feed ’em in and watch ’em all get slaughtered, because this is MY island! And when you have this kind of power, all you gotta do… Is show up and win.” A new catchphrase for a new Roman. Who will make it to the biggest fight yet?
SmackDown returns to Jey Uso finding Roman and Heyman backstage.
“Yessir!” Welcome back, NEW Universal Champion! The family’s so proud, but he hasn’t responded to their texts and calls. Heyman walks off so family can talk private. What’s the deal with having Paul E? After everything with him and Lesnar? Roman says he has it under control. Well alright. If Roman needs someone to watch is back, Jey is there. Sure thing. Roman has to go, though, so hit him up later. Jey says they should get a steak after. Just what is going on in side Roman’s head?
Heavy Machinery VS The Miz & John Morrison!
Otis and Tucker still have a lot of beef with the Greatest Tag Team of the 21st Century *look off into distance*, but only ONE can challenge the Swiss Cyborg and King of Strong Style! Who wins to make a major case towards that title match at Clash of Champions?
SmackDown returns as the Hollywood A-Lister and Guru of Greatness make their entrances. The teams sort out and Otis starts with Miz. They circle, Miz gets a waistlock but Otis standing switches to slam Miz down! Then he picks Miz up to slam him again! Otis has Miz on the ropes but Miz elbows back! Miz throws haymakers and chops, but runs into Otis’ shoulder! Otis tags Tucker, they whip Miz and double shoulder tackle him down! Cover, TWO! Tucker keeps on Miz but Miz jawbreakers back! Tag to Morrison but Morrison runs into a takedown by Tucky! Tucker has Morrison in a waistlock, rolls him around then brings him up to whip for a BIG hip toss!
Tucker has Morrison in the corner, for a splash! Otis tags in, whips Tucker in for another splash, then Morrison is fed to a BIG shoulder tackle! Otis is fired up as Morrison flounders to a corner. Otis brings Morrison up, rams his shoulder in then whips corner to corner. Morrison comes back and Otis back drops him! Miz runs in, Otis dodges, Tucker scoops him! Otis scoops Morrison, they ram Miz and Morrison together, then double SLAM! Miz and Morrison get clothesline’d out and Heavy Machinery stands tall as SmackDown goes to break!
SmackDown returns and the tables have turned as Miz has Tucker in the corner. Miz starts up the “Hey hey! Ho ho!” but Morrison is really the only one responding. Miz tags Morrison but Tucker fights back! Tucker throws haymakers on Miz but Morrison clobbers him from behind! Miz and Morrison double whip but Tucker leaps over both of them! Tag to Otis! The Dozer bulldozes through Miz and Morrison and back again! Otis has Morrison with a whip and a pop-up flapjack! Otis runs in,Miz pushes Morrison out of the way! FLYING CHUCK CHOP BLOCK! Miz fish hooks Otis’ face, tags Morrison back in, and then Morrison runs to SHINING WIZARD! Miz runs to BOOT! Morrison covers, TWO!
Morrison keeps on Otis with big hands and elbows. Otis hits back but Miz tags in. Miz and Morrison whip Otis to a corner. Morrison whips Miz but Otis dodges! Otis throws Morrison out as Miz hits buckles, then Otis back elbows Miz. Morrison drags Tucker off the apron for a MOONLIGHT DRIVE! “Now what?!” Otis turn around into It Kicks, but they just power Otis up! Otis jiggles and gyrates, then he blocks a kick to scoop Miz for an EXPLODER! Morrison gets in, he gets an EXPLODER! Greatest Sandwich of the 21st Century in the corner! Otis has his target and fires up with the fans, for a CATERPILLAR ELBOW! Otis then goes up top for a VADER BOMB!! Cover, Heavy Machinery wins!
Winners: Heavy Machinery, by pinfall
A huge win over a top tag team, but Morrison STEALS the Money in the Bank contract! That doesn’t make him Mr. MITB, but it does make him a thorn in Otis’ side! Will Otis be able to take back his prize from the Friday Night Delight?
Happy Birthday, but for who?
Big E talks with Drew Gulak, and tells Lucha House Party to be careful. This is a very small, rather sad cake since it doesn’t even have the person’s name on it. But Big E says this is big. Not only is Xavier Woods BACK to host Talking Smack later tonight, it is also his BIRTHDAY! But cakes and balloons aside, it is big for Big E. If, no WHEN, Big E wins tonight, he cashes in a golden ticket for a title match with Roman Reigns! It’s going down, baby! Security comes over and says Woods has arrived. Alright, here we go! Big E brings the cake to the parking lot, but SHEAMUS attacks! Was it just a trap?! These two brawl, the cake is ruined, and Big E gets a BROGUE against the garage door!!
Sheamus pretends to be upset over not being invited to the party, and he bounces Big E’s head off the hood of a Hyundai! Sheamus drags Big E up, but security and refs tell Sheamus to stop! He doesn’t listen, WHITE NOISE to the front windshield!! The Celtic Warrior just crushed Big E’s body, but has he crushed Big E’s spirit? Or will Big E still make it to that Fatal 4 Way to exact revenge AND achieve a dream?
SmackDown returns with medics checking on Big E.
He hasn’t moved since the commercial break and the medics are very careful with him. A stretcher has been brought given the major lacerations and possible internal damage. Sheamus returns to the scene of the crime to say it is difficult to watch, but he can’t take his eyes off this. Did he set Big E up just for losing at Payback? What? Sheamus was doing what any man would do and defended himself. Big E probably did think Woods was here, but maybe it was some misinformation. If you want to be in the main event, to grab the brass ring, then you need to stay focused. Sheamus is already thinking about Riddle’s strikes and Corbin’s power game. Big E was thinking about laughing and dancing with his buddy.
To be honest, it’s sad. This could’ve been the biggest night in Big E’s career, and he lets his friends drag him down again. But y’know what they say? You can’t dwell on the past! Sheamus has a big fight in that Fatal 4 Way for the Clash of Champions match, so he’s gotta go. Well actually, it’s probably just a Triple Threat now. Will the Fella face the consequences before the end of the night?
Backstage interview with Sasha Banks and Bayley!
It has been a tumultuous time for them. Payback saw them lose the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships after Sasha lost the Raw Women’s Championship. What’s her point? Well, tonight is a rematch for those titles before Clash of Champions. How do they feel about their chances? Bayley says that Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax were a brand new team, no one knew what to expect. But now Bayley and Sasha have it all set. They’re getting their own payback and taking those titles back! But Shayna has tapped Bayley out the last three times they’ve been in the same ring together. Do they have-
Who the hell do you think you are?! You are talking to the greatest SmackDown Women’s Champion of all time, the Women’s Grand Slam Winner! That is why Bayley is a role model to millions, and is Sasha’s best friend! No matter what, they’ve changed the game together, and are going to do it again. They’re going to show everyone why they run the whole damn company! That Payback payback happens after the break!
SmackDown returns to Adam Pearce and a medical update on Big E.
Big E is being evaluated, so the extent of his injuries are unknown, but it means he is NOT cleared for tonight’s main event. The Fatal 4 Way will still be a Fatal 4 Way, but with a new fourth man. And it’s at this moment that Heyman appears and wants to talk with Pearce. Will Heyman give his input on who should, or shouldn’t, be in the Fatal 4 Way to determine Roman’s challenger?
WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships: Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax VS Bayley & Sasha Banks!
The Queen of Spades and the Irresistible Force did the impossible at Payback: they got along! But they also managed to do that and take the titles from the Golden Role Models. Will they do it again to deny the return of #BayleyDosStraps?
Cesaro and Nakamura give comments on this match up. Two mac trucks and two sports cars, what happens when they collide? BOOM! CRASH! That’s not nice, given what we just saw with Big E. Pff like they care. But win or lose, Bayley and Banks will always have a place at the Champion’s Lounge. The introductions for this match are made, the Women’s Tag Titles are raised, and Payback’s payback begins!
Shayna starts with Bayley but then Nia tags in quick. They argue, Sasha tags in and the role models attack! They send Shayna and Nia out, then double baseball slide, into double swings into the barriers! Shayna and Nia are unified in swinging and slamming Sasha and Bayley around, and then let them down as SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns and Shayna gut wrenches Bayley to a cover, TWO! Shayna keeps on Bayley and brings her over, tag to Nia. Nia runs in to corner splash, then Shayna adds a KNEE! Nia covers, TWO! Nia drags Bayley up, Bayley hits back with body shots, but Nia scoops and gut busters! Cover, TWO! Nia drags Bayley back up, and TOSSES her to a corner! Nia hits a hip attack! Then another! Sasha tries to save Bayley but too late, Nia brings Bayley into a cobra clutch. Nia leans on Bayley, thrashes her about, then leans on her more. Bayley endures, fights up and fights back with elbows. Nia whips Bayley hard into buckles! Nia drags Bayley to a cover, TWO!
Nia taunts Ssaha as she clubs Bayley. Bayley hits back, pulls hair, but is powered to the corner! Nia brings Bayley out to shove her back in, then tags in Shayna. Shayna hits another KNEE! Shayna half hatch rolls Bayley, and goes after the arm! Bayley flails as she endures the hammerlock. Shayna twists the wrist, clubs the shoulder then SNAPS it back! The ref checks on Bayley and keeps Shayna back. Bayley gets to the rope, Sasha wants to check on her friend but she has to stay at the corner. Shayna sees Bayley sit up on the apron, and Bayley kicks back. Shayna kicks, drags Bayley by a leg and tags in Nia. Nia SMASHES the knee!
Nia drags Bayley up, scoops Bayley but Bayley fights. Sasha gets in, Bayley gets away and Bayley chop blocks a leg! Tag to Sasha and Sasha stomps and hammers away on Nia! Nia gets up, shoves Sasha and scoops her, but Sasha tilt-o-whirls and sends Nia to a corner. Sasha runs in, is put on the apron but knees and KICKS and KICKS Nia back! Sasha climbs up and swings around, METEORA! Then side to side METEORA! Sasha goes up top, FLYING METEORA!! Cover, TWO!! Nia still has power to launch Sasha off her, but Sasha comes back with a sleeper hold. Nia pops Sasha off her back to a fireman’s carry, but Sasha gets to the apron.
Shayna tags in, Sasha kicks her away. Sasha dumps Nia out and KNEES her back. Sasha runs, Bayley tags, Sasha slides under Nia! Bayley hotshots Nia into the POWERBOMB!! But Shayna grabs Bayley, only for Bayley to back suplex her away! Bayley tags Sasha back in, SHINING WIZARD! Cover, TWO!! Shayna survives and shocks Sasha! Sasha grits her teeth as she gets back to her feet. Sasha drags Shayna up, talks trash, then bumps her off buckles. Sasha stomps away, Bayley tags in and she adds stomps! Sasha tags in, she stomps away! The ref counts, Sasha lets up at 4, and comes back as Bayley talks trash. Tag to Bayley, they double lift but Shayna fights out! Shayna throws Sasha then drags Bayley into a Kirafuda! BACKSTABBER from Sasha!
Bayley hurries up top but Sasha is legal, cover, TWO! Bayley tags back in, Sasha sets Shayna up for her, MACHO ELBOW!! Cover, TWO!! The role models are beside themselves as Shayna survives again! Bayley drags Shayna over, tags Sasha and then sends Shayna on the apron. Sasha baseball slide dropkicks Shayna in the side! Shayna scrambles to the other corner, Sasha runs and METEORAS into the post!! Sasha crashes and burns and Bayley freaks out! A ring count starts, Sasha stands at 3 but Shayna is on her at the apron. Sasha hotshots Shayna, climbs up and swings, but Shayna catches the knees to send them into buckles! CHOP BLOCK! Sasha is down and clutching both knees as Shayna aims. CHOP BLOCK!!
Shayna drags Sasha around by the bad legs, steps through but Sasha cradle counters! TWO, Shayna DECKS Bayley! Shayna has Sasha’s legs again, and stomps away on the bad knee!! Sasha can only scream in pain as Shayna ties the legs up in a Deathlock. Bayley runs in, it’s just like Payback! But Bayley uses the BAYLEY2BELLY to counter!! Shayna is down, Sasha crawls to cover, TWO!! But into a BANK STATEMENT! Nia clobbers Bayley and kicks Sasha! Nia goes back to her corner, Shayna crawls over, and gets the tag! Nia has Sasha in a STRETCH MUFFLER!! Sasha powers up and sunset flips, TWO!! Nia drags Sasha up to a fireman’s carry, then goes to a corner! Nia climbs, Bayley gets in to save Sasha!
Sasha falls but Bayley helps her up. They see Shayna coming, and manage to give her the DOUBLE SLAM! But Nia LEAPS for a double crossbody!! Double cover, Nia and Shayna win!!
Winners: Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax, by pinfall (still WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions)
The odd couple finds another way to work together, and to win together! What will it take to stop the momentum of the most savage in the Women’s Division?
As for Sasha, medics hurry in to check on Sasha’s legs. Bayley is very concerned about Sasha, is the Boss’ knee going to be okay?
SmackDown returns as medics continue to help Sasha.
Sasha is very emotional and in a lot of pain, but she doesn’t want them to touch her. She shoves the medics away and Bayley is there to help her. Does she want to stand? Slide out? Sasha struggles to do either as Bayley helps her to the apron. And then Bayley attacks her?! Bayley drags Sasha out, dumps her on the ramp and then throws her into steel steps!! Bayley tells booing fans to shut up and tells refs to get away! Bayley brings Sasha up to POST her! Bayley goes after the bad leg and puts it on the steps to SLAM it!! And then stomp away on it!! Sasha cowers against the barriers but Bayley drag her up to throw her into those barriers! Bayley then bumps her off apron sand pushes her back in the ring!
Referees come back but Bayley tells them to shut up. Bayley drags Sasha up and RAMS her into the corner! And then stomps away on her! And hammers her with fists! And goes after the bad leg again with kicks! Sasha can’t defend herself as Bayley drags her up. Bayley asks Michael Cole if it’s Boss Time now, before dribbling Sasha’s head on the mat! Bayley looms over a limp Sasha, slaps her with her own boots, and then tells her, “You deserve all of this! All of this!!” Bayley gives the bad leg a DDT! And then she gets a chair!! Bayley glares at everyone else before she puts the chair in the ring. Bayley puts Sasha’s bad leg in the chair! Sasha kicks with her good leg! Bayley KNEES Sasha down!
Bayley isn’t done with Sasha, either! Fans boo and cheer as Bayley hits Sasha with the FACEPLANT! Then she drags Sasha over to the chair, puts Sasha’s head inside, goes up to the top rope and STOMPS DOWN!! Sasha has been crushed physically and emotionally by someone she thought of as her best friend! Fans boo and jeer as Bayley leaves the ring and medics return. Bayley clutches to the SmackDown Women’s Championship, the only thing she has and the only thing she needs anymore. Will there come a time when she loses even that?
SmackDown returns as Sami Zayn heads to the ring!
The self-proclaimed “Great Liberator” is also the self-proclaimed “rightful WWE Intercontinental Champion.” He returned last week, still holding onto his copy of the championship and wants Greg Hamilton to give a better introduction. He is holding a title, why is he just “Sami Zayn” then? Address him as champion! It wasn’t in the notes… Who’s the stage manager here? Evan? Where are you, Evan? Come here. Sami takes Evan’s headset and tells Marty that things are good, but… During the entrance, with the graphic, put “Intercontinental Champion” in there. Marty apparently says he can’t, because it’s not in the notes.
Sami says no one is taking this seriously! They’re going to redo things and- Here comes Jeff Hardy! Hardy tells Sami he could’ve saved us all some time. He didn’t need to attack Hardy, he just had to ask for a title match. Oh is that so? How generous, and confusing, since SAMI is the champion! If anything, Hardy needs to ask Sami if he has a shot at the title. Hardy says he doesn’t need to ask for anything of Sami, but here comes AJ Styles! “How is it that you two can parade with those titles over your shoulders KNOWING I am the uncrowned Intercontinental Champion?!” Sami is upset. Is everyone crazy? Hardy tells Styles if he’s 100%, they can go again any time. Sami says that’s not how this works, but Styles DECKS Hardy!
Styles stomps away on Hardy, Sami is in the other corner but keeps his distance. Then they work together to stomp Hardy, until Styles KICKS Sami in the head! Styles reels Sami in but Hardy gives Styles a TWIST OF FATE! And then one for Sami, but no! Sami fights out and HELLUVA KICKS!! Fans boo as Sami gets away with whichever belt was his. Will there be a way to settle this come Clash of Champions?
A substitution has been made!
With Big E out because of Sheamus’ attack, and perhaps with some consulting from Paul Heyman, it’s JEY USO in the Fatal 4 Way! Will Roman have to face his own COUSIN come Clash of Champions?! We’re about to find out!!
SmackDown returns, and someone is strutting their stuff.
High heels, a fur coat, but who is it that’s about to make SmackDown more alluring?
Tucker and Otis regroup backstage.
They haven’t found Morrison or the MITB contract. Otis says it’s fine, but Tucky says it’s not! Morrison has the contract! No he doesn’t. It’s not in the briefcase, it’s in the lunch pail! Brilliant! But if that’s in here, what was in the briefcase? Heh heh heh…
Meanwhile, Miz tells Morrison that stealing the briefcase doesn’t make you Mr. MITB. Morison begs to differ. He opens it up, and rummages through a stapler, some Q-tips, and… a ham ‘n’ cheese sandwich. Well… Don’t eat that. Whatever. Will Morrison and Miz ditch the glorified lunchbox to get the real prize?
Jey meets with Roman backstage.
Jey thanks him for getting him into that Fatal 4 Way. Roman says Jey doesn’t owe him. It’s just about time the WWE shows the Usos some respect. Jey is gonna go get it, and then the two of them can “turn up” at Clash. Roman’s not so sure about that. Jimmy’s won things, Roman’s won just about everything, now it’s time for Jey to get something on his own. Good luck.
WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender’s Fatal 4 Way: Matt Riddle VS Baron Corbin VS Sheamus VS Jey Uso!
Bro… One of these decorated superstars is going to make it to Clash of Champions to go after the Big Dog’s gold! The King of Bros wants to get payback at the Wolf King and vice-versa, the Celtic Warrior claims he’s completely focused, but now they all have to deal with a wildcard! Will Jey be able #LOCKDOWN a singles push and put them all in the Uso Penitentiary?
Corbin wants the music to stop, because this match “has been tainted by blatant nepotism!” He does not accept Jey Uso being in this match just because Roman is his cousin! Riddle doesn’t care about all that, he runs at Corbin and his palanquin! Corbin can’t get down fast enough and Riddle fires off! They brawl on stage, Corbin knees low but turns around into Riddle’s haymakers! Riddle and Corbin bump into LED wall, Corbin throws body shots and here comes Sheamus to knock them both down the ramp! Sheamus throws Riddle into the ring, gets in with him and Jey hurries out to go after Corbin!
There’s brawls all over as Jey has Corbin on barriers and Riddle throws kicks on Sheamus. Corbin throws Jey into barriers, Sheamus clubs Riddle down but Riddle comes back! It’s chaos as SmackDown again goes to break!
SmackDown returns with a new episode of Firefly Fun House!
Bray Wyatt waves hi to the Fireflies and best we’re just like him: “A little down in the dumps because he lost his favorite toy, again.” But don’t worry! Next week, Bray has something special planned to cheer us up! A brand new friend is joining the Fun House! Who could it be?! Wait and see! BYE~! See you then~!
Nikki Cross was watching Firefly Fun House.
Alexa Bliss comes by, hairs still in pigtails and braids. Is that Ramblin’ Rabbit in the back waving?! Alexa apologizes for smashing the mug, she just… Something came over her. Can Nikki forgive her? Of course! Okay! Alexa gives Nikki a hug and then heads off. Is everything (not) fine with Alexa?
WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender’s Fatal 4 Way: Matt Riddle VS Baron Corbin VS Sheamus VS Jey Uso!
Okay, let’s try this again! All four men are in the ring, a corner to themselves, and a referee in the middle. Who moves on to Clash of Champions to face Roman Reigns?
The bell rings and Corbin runs at Riddle to get a SUPERKICK from Jey! Sheamus tackles Jey but Riddle goes after Sheamus. Sheamus throws Riddle off, Jey ROCKS him with an uppercut! Riddle rolls Jey, TWO! Riddle says nothing personal, bro. Riddle KNEES Sheamus out, Jey rolls him up! TWO, Riddle waistlocks and German Suplexes, but Jey lands on his feet! Jey runs, Corbin trips him up, drags him out and RAMS him into barriers! Sheamus gets in, scoops Riddle and hits a BACKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Corbin rushes in and stares down with Sheamus. They decide to stomp Riddle together, drag him up and mug him with body shots! Corbin keeps Jey out and the mugging of Riddle continues.
Corbin ROCKS Riddle with a right, Sheamus drags Riddle up, and they double whip Riddle. Riddle holds ropes, BOOTS Corbin then dumps Sheamus out! But Corbin SPINE BUSTERS Riddle! High stack, Jey breaks the cover! Corbin CLOBBERS Jey, covers, TWO! Sheamus returns, he and Corbin keep their truce as they go after Jey. They each take a turn digging their knees into Jey, then Sheamus ROCKS Jey with that EuroUpper! Corbin DECKS Riddle on the apron, then brings Jey up to ROCK him with a right. Corbin runs in, slides out as Jey dodges, and Riddle ROUNDHOUSES Corbin down! Jey boots Sheamus, rocks him with uppercuts of his own, but Sheamus kicks low.
Sheamus whips, Jey kicks back, Riddle returns to CHOP away with palm strikes! Riddle has Sheamus in a corner, Jey kicks at Corbin but Corbin blocks. Corbin spins Jey but gets the dragon whip enzugiri! Riddle spins Sheamus for a PELE! Corbin and Sheamus are in corners, Jey and Riddle work together to forearm smash back and forth! But they each run into trouble, DEEP SIX and an IRISH CURSE! Covers on both ends, TWO!! Corbin argues with the ref but then Sheamus CLOBBERS Corbin! No more truce, and the Fella stands tall as we go to break.
SmackDown returns and Sheamus brings Jey up. Jey throws uppercuts and CHOPS to back Sheamus down. Sheamus knees low, suplexes Jey hard, but Jey rolls out of the ring. Sheamus sees Corbin and hits him with punches and stomps and then hotshots him down! Sheamus runs side to side to dropkick Corbin to the floor! Sheamus finds Jey on the other apron, brings him up, and gives him beats of the Bodhrain! Sheamus gives him all ten beats before he lets him flop down. Sheamus drags Jey back up, fireman’s carries, but Riddle ROUNDHOUSES him down! Riddle dodges Corbin, wristlock, FINAL FLASH!
Sheamus swings but Riddle hits back with palm strikes and a boot! BROSPLODER! PENALTY KICK! BROTON!! Riddle is all fired up! Riddle has Sheamus for a GERMAN SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO! Riddle keeps his focus as he drags Sheamus into a Triangle Hold! Sheamus fights up, Riddle elbows away on Sheamus’ head, but Sheamus keeps fighting up! DEAD LIFT POWERBOMB! High stack, TWO, but Sheamus gets the legs for a CLOVERLEAF! Riddle endures as Sheamus sits deep, and Riddle powers up to head for ropes. Sheamus drags Riddle back to center, but Jey is in to SUPERKICK Sheamus down!
Corbin returns to roll Jey up, TWO!! Corbin choke grips but Jey slips out to mule kick and uppercut! Jey aims, boom for the HIP ATTACK! SUPERKICK for Riddle! SUPERKICK for Sheamus! Corbin runs in, Jey dodges to SUPERKICK him down! Everyone else is on the outside but Jey is fired up! Jey builds speed and DIVES into an elbow from Corbin! Sheamus and Riddle attack Corbin and clothesline him into the “front row!” But then Jey FLIES out onto them both!! All four men are down and out of the ring as the fans fire up! Jey stands, Corbin returns to grab at him! Jey elbows and hotshots Corbin off the barriers! Then LEAPS, into hands! Corbin TOSSES Jey over the LED fan screens!!
Corbin goes back to ringside and tosses Riddle into barriers! Then into the ring! Corbin stalks behind Riddle, reels him in, but no End of Days as Riddle slips out! BROGUE outta nowhere!! But Riddle fireman’s carries Sheamus for a BRO TO SLEEP! Riddle sees Corbin in a drop zone, goes up top, and hits a FLOATING BRO! But Jey outta nowhere with a SPLASH!! Jey wins!?!?
Winner: Jey Uso, by pinfall (NEW #1 Contender to the Universal Championship)
Where the Uce did he come from!? But now, we will get cousin VS cousin at Clash of Champions! Kayla Braxton is there to interview Jey in the ring. How important was this win for him? “YESSIR!! Hey, Big Dog! I made the family proud, too! But guess what?” Roman will be on #LOCKDOWN! Welcome… Well you know the rest! But will either man be able to do what he has to in order to defeat family?
Wow, this episode managed to only have three matches, and yet it still felt really good. Heyman and Heel Roman had a great opening promo, and Roman’s new tone was played really well the entire episode. I like the idea that SmackDown had a Fatal 4 because they wanted to be bigger than Raw to show that’s how big it is that Roman is champion again. The Xavier Woods return swerve was really well executed, as was Sheamus brutalizing Big E. It was quite the elaborate way to keep Big E out of the main event, and it was quite the surprise for Jey to be put in. Though, I have a feeling that this is because Heyman and even Roman feel Jey will be an easy win. Now, obviously Roman will win at Clash, he only just got the title back and he’s not facing either Bray or Braun. But in story, it adds to the Heel turn if Roman doesn’t even respect family anymore, he just expects them to fall in line behind him.
The opening tag match was really good stuff, and it makes a lot of sense for Heavy Machinery to win. They’re the only other Face tag team on SmackDown to face the Heel team of Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura. I do like the swerve on Morrison stealing the MITB briefcase, and it’s a great way for Otis to technically customize the briefcase in different way than others have, such as Brock’s boombox or Damien Sandow’s leather briefcase. I am pretty sure the confrontation between Hardy, Styles and Sami is bringing us ever closer to the idea of a new “Undisputed Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match” that I was hoping for. And making it Triple Threat can still lighten the load on all three men’s bodies with ladder matches being very punishing.
The random Firefly Fun House segment was good to hype up next week. I really hope we get Puppet Cena, but chances are it could even be Alexa Bliss herself. She and Nikki Cross had their little chat with Ramblin’ Rabbit watching them, so clearly there’s even more about to happen with that story. The random woman strutting in heels thing is interesting. I’m not sure who, new or returning, could be pulling off the umpteenth “glamorous female wrestler” gimmick for WWE this time.
And of course, the biggest thing tonight was the Women’s Tag title match and what happened right after. The match was incredible, much like the Payback one, and it was clear Shayna and Nia were going to retain. I just did NOT see Bayley turning on Sasha! That was BRUTAL! But I also think it means that Sasha is joining the case of The Mandalorian for season 2 as rumored a few months ago, so she needed to be written off. This definitely gives Bayley the Heel heat she needs to stay solo while taking on new challengers. This also gives Sasha a great way to come back when filming for The Mandalorian ins over, as a Face, and attacking Bayley, regardless if Bayley still has the title.
My Score: 8.5/10
Mitchell’s AEW Dynamite Results & Report! (8/17/22)
American Dragon VS Dragonslayer!
Dynamite becomes the House of the Dragon!
AEW has an epic rematch between Bryan Danielson and Daniel Garcia, in a Best Two Out of Three Falls match! Will Red Death truly slay the American Dragon?
- Best 2 out of 3 Falls: Bryan Danielson VS Daniel Garcia; wins.
- Gunn Club VS The Varsity Blonds; win(s).
- Toni Storm VS KiLynn King; wins.
- AEW World Trios Championship Tournament, Opening Round: La Faccion Ingobernable VS The Young Bucks & ???; win(s) and advances.
PLAY BY PLAY
[Due to scheduling conflicts, coverage of AEW Dynamite will begin later tonight]
Mitchell’s NJPW G1 Climax 32 Results & Report! (8/17/22)
And then there were four!
The G1 Climax’s Final Four face off!
A VS B and C VS D, the biggest G1 Climax in NJPW history reaches its semifinals! Will Tetsuya Naito make Will Ospreay trainquilo? Will Kazuchika Okada make it rain on the Good Bad Guy?
- 8 Man Tag: Chaos VS Suzuki-Gun; Chaos wins.
- Royce Isaacs & Tom Lawlor VS Dangerous Tekkers; Dangerous Tekkers win.
- Tomoaki Honma & Togi Makabe VS Bad Dude Tito & JONAH; Tito & Jonah win.
- Six Man Tag: The United Empire VS Bullet Club; Bullet Club wins.
- 8 Man Tag: Los Ingobernables de Japon VS Bullet Club; Bullet Club wins.
- 8 Man Tag: Hiroshi Tanahashi, Toru Yano, David Finlay & KUSHIDA VS Bullet Club; Tanahashi, Yano, Finlay & Kushida win.
- G1 Climax 32 Semifinal: Kazuchika Okada VS Tama Tonga; Okada wins and advances to the finals.
- G1 Climax 32 Semifinal: Tetsuya Naito VS Will Ospreay; Ospreay wins and advances to the finals.
PLAY BY PLAY
G1 Climax 32 Semifinal: Kazuchika Okada VS Tama Tonga w/ Jado!
It’s A Block VS B Block, Rainmaker VS Good Bad Guy! And in G1 Climax 31, Okada lost to Tama! Will history repeat itself? Or will Tama have to fall back to the golden ticket he got from beating Jay White?
The bell rings and fans rally up already as the two circle. Tama and Okada shake hands to show there’s respect here and fans cheer more. Okada and Tama tie up, are in a deadlock, but Okada uses his height as leverage. Okada puts Tama on the ropes and the ref calls for the break. Okada lets off, pats Tama on the shoulders, but Tama rushes in. Okada kicks low, headlocks, but Tama powers up and out. Okada runs Tama over and fans fire up. Okada runs, Tama gets up to arm-drag Okada around! Then Tama dropkicks Okada down! Fans fire up more as Tama brings Okada up. Tama CLUBS Okada and follows him to a corner.
Tama throws body shots, but Okada throws forearms! Tama knees low, Okada throws body shots but Tama CLUBS Okada down. Fans rally as Tama whips corner to corner, but Okada reverses. Okada runs in but into a back elbow. Tama runs at Okada but into the FLAPJACK! Fans applaud while Okada catches his breath. Jado coaches Tama while fans rally up. Okada drags Tama up, ROCKS him with a forearm, and Tama goes to ropes. Okada brings Tama around to CLUB him on the neck. Okada puts Tama in a corner and throws a back elbow. And then another! And then another! The ref counts and Okada lets off.
Fans rally, Jado coaches Tama, but Okada brings Tama up. Tama throws body shots but Okada knees low. Okada turns Tama for a NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Fans rally and Okada sits Tama up for a chinlock. Tama endures while Okada squeezes tight. The fans rally up more as Okada turns and twists Tama. Tama fights up to his feet, throws elbows, but Okada knees low. Okada throws Tama out of the ring then follows after. Tama staggers up into a kick and DDT to the floor! Okada leaves Tama behind while fans rally up. Jado coaches Tama while the ring count climbs. We’re at 5 of 20 but Tama is still down.
Tama pushes up off the floor at 10 of 20 and crawls his way over, and he drags himself up at 16, only to fall! Tama springs up and in at 19! Okada walks over and kicks Tama around while the fans rally up. “O-KA-DA!” eggs Tama on, so Tama fires off forearm after forearm! Okada eggs Tama on, Tama keeps throwing hands, but Okada DECKS Tama with one! Okada whips Tama to a corner, but Tama comes back to CLOBBER Okada! Fans fire up and rally again as Tama drags himself up the ropes. Tama rushes Okada to LARIAT, and ELBOW, and scoop SLAM! OFF COMES THE VEST! Fans fire up with Tama as he claps, “TA-MA! TA-MA!”
Okada is in the corner, Tama runs in to STINGER SPLASH! And then a BIG back suplex! Cover, TWO! Fans continue to rally as Tama paces around. Tama brings Okada up to CLUB him down, then he throws body shots. Tama dragon sleepers but Okada fights free! Tama throws a body shot, an uppercut, and then whips. Okada ducks ‘n’ dodges to CLOBBER Tama with an elbow! Fans rally and Okada whips Tama into a corner. Okada runs in to back elbow, then kicks and DDTs! Cover, TWO! Fans clap for “O-KA-DA!” “GOOD BAD GUY!” as Okada watches Tama stand. Tama staggers into the Alabama Lift! But Tama fights it off with body shots!
Okada ROCKS Tama, but Tama ROCKS Okada. Okada EuroUppers but Tama EuroUppers back! Okada swings but into the TONGAN TWIST! Fans rally up again as Okada bails out of the ring. Tama goes out after Okada and brings him up, but Okada throws body shots! Okada whips Tama into railing, and Tama bounces off into a scoop! But Tama fights that to a TONGAN TWIST to the floor! A bit of payback from earlier! Fans rally up while the ref checks both men. Both men are able to continue and Tama stands first. The ring count starts and Tama drags Okada up at 5 of 20 to put him in at 6. Fans cheer as this match continues.
Tama stalks Okada while the fans clap. Okada stands, Tama rushes in, VENENO! Cover, TWO! Tama paces around then brings Okada back up. Tama fireman’s carries, but Okada fights free and spins Tama. ROLLING- NO, Tama ducks the lariat to fireman’s carry! S R C! Tama heads for the corner and fans fire up! SUPREME FLOW! Cover, TWO!! Okada survives and Tama grows frustrated, but Jado calls the shot! Tama and Jado pound the mat, and fans clap along. Tama watches Okada rise, then he rushes in, GUN- NO, Okada turns that into the BACK2BACKBREAKER! And then the MONEY CLIP!!
Tama endures and fans rally up! Tama reaches out and gets the ROPEBREAK! Okada lets go in frustration but fans fire up more. The fans continue to rally, “O-KA-DA!” “GOOD BAD GUY!” Okada drags Tama up, scoops him and SLAMS him, then goes to the corner. Okada climbs up and fans rally for the MACHO ELBOW! And of course, the Rainmaker Pose! Okada drags Tama up, wristlocks, but Tama throws back elbows. Okada CLUBS Tama, EuroUppers and runs, but into a DROPKICK! Fans fire up as Tama takes Okada down! Tama drags Okada up, but Okada fights off the suplex to shove and DROPKICK Tama in return!
Okada drags Tama back up, ripcords, but Tama ducks to slips around, BLOODY SUNDAY!! Shoutout to the Prince! Cover, TWO!! Okada survives but Tama just reloads and brings him back up! Double underhooks, but Okada fights free to LARIAT! Not quite the Rainmaker but Okada holds onto the wrist! Fans rally as Okada slowly rises back up. Okada drags Tama up, for a short arm LARIAT! Okada fires up and the fans follow suit! He drags Tama back up, ripcords, but Tama ducks and runs, into a DROPKICK! But he gets back up! Tama is roaring, fans are fire dup, but Okada scoops for the LANDSLIDE!!
Okada then ripcords Tama, GUN STUN!!! But Tama can’t make the cover! Jado shouts to Tama, he crawls over to Okada, pushes Okada over for the cover, TWO!!! Okada survives because of the delay! Fans are thunderous while both men are still down! Tama rises and he drags Okada back up. Tama reels Okada in, underhooks the arms, but Okada fights the lift! Tama CLUBS Okada, CLUBS him again, and fans rally as Tama CLUBS Okada one more time. Tama brings Okada up, reels him in again, but Okada back drops and sits on the cover! TWO!! Tama swings, but into a waistlock! Tama fights the suplex, throws elbows, and then whips.
Okada reverses but Tama dodges the dropkick! And he hurries to underhook, but Okada slips out! GUN- NO, Okada holds it off this time, to then get the wristlock! Ripcord, GUN- NO!! Okada turns it into a MONEY CLIP!!! Fans rally as hard as ever, and Tama turns clip into cradle! TWO!!! Okada escapes, BOOTS, but Tama PELES! Tama reloads fast and waits on Okada to stand! Okada is up, Tama runs in, GUN- NO!!! Okada fights it again, to ENZIGURI! And then pump handle scoop, POWERSLAM!! Ripcord, RAINMAKER!!! Cover, Okada wins!
Winner: Kazuchika Okada, by pinfall (advances to the finals)
Tama put up one hell of a fight, truly worthy of the biggest G1 Climax ever, but it just wasn’t enough to stop the Rainmaker! Will Okada not stop until he has that Right to Challenge briefcase once more?
G1 Climax 32 Semifinal: Tetsuya Naito VS Will Ospreay w/ Great-O-Khan!
It’s C Block VS D Block, Uncontrollable Charisma VS Commonwealth Kingpin! We know Okada awaits in the finals, will he be facing one of his great rivals in Naito? Or will it be one of his great enemies in Ospreay?
Naito takes off his elaborate entrance attire while Ospreay takes his time with his coat and two title belts. Fans rally, “NA-I-TO!” “O-SU-PREAY!” and the bell rings. Ospreay encourages the fans to get louder so they do, and Naito says that’s nice. The two then circle, Naito goes back and forth to toy with Ospreay, but then they tie up. They’re in a deadlock, but Ospreay finds a point of leverage. He puts Naito on the ropes and Red Shoes counts. Ospreay pats Naito but Naito turns things around. Naito has Ospreay on the ropes, but then pats Ospreay on the shoulders. To then kick low and CLUB him on the neck! And again!
Red Shoes reprimands but Naito whips Ospreay. Ospreay reverses, Naito holds ropes and BOOTS Back, to then RANA! But Ospreay handsprings through! Naito ducks the Penalty Kick, avoids the Standing Moonsault, then arm-drags Ospreay! Naito ducks a roundhouse and tranquilos! Ospreay smirks while Naito bails out. Fans rally up while Naito stares Khan down. Khan keeps his distance and Naito takes a walk around the ring. Khan tells Naito to get back in so Naito does. Naito and Ospreay circle, feel out a knuckle lock, then circle some more. Ospreay blocks Naito’s kick! Naito tries to reach Ospreay but he can’t!
Ospreay ROCKS Naito with a forearm, then another! Ospreay whips, atomic drops and CHOPS Naito down, for the STANDING SHOOTING STAR! Cover, TWO! Fans fire up and Khan cheers Ospreay on. Ospreay drags Naito up, ROCKS him again, then bumps him off buckles. Ospreay CHOPS Naito in the corner, then stalks him to another corner. Ospreay CHOPS again and Naito staggers. Ospreay whips him but Naito reverses, only for Ospreay to go up and over. Naito dodges, blocks a kick and puts Ospreay in the ropes for a DRAPING BACKBREAKER! Naito then whips Ospreay to ropes for a hip toss! And basement dropkick! Naito keeps going, NECKBREAKER!
Fans fire up while Ospreay clutches his neck. Fans rally up and Naito brings Ospreay into a chinlock. Naito grinds Ospreay down with an almost bulldog choke but Ospreay endures. Fans rally up more, Ospreay pulls hair but Red Shoes reprimands. Naito lets off to snapmare Ospreay into a headscissor hold! Naito pushes up to put pressure on the neck but Ospreay endures. Ospreay rolls around and gets the ROPEBREAK! Red Shoes counts and Khan protests, and Naito lets off. Fans rally up as Naito brings Ospreay around. Naito ROCKS Ospreay but Ospreay ROCKS Naito, repeat! Naito then CLUBS Ospreay on the neck!
Naito CLUBS away on Ospreay in the corner, then whips him corner to corner. Naito runs in to JUMP KICK! Leg sweep, SWINGING DROPKICK! Combinacion Cabron! Fans fire up as Naito poses, then covers, TWO! Fans rally up and Naito stomps Ospreay around. Naito brings Ospreay up to cravat and neck wrench! Ospreay endures, drops to a knee, and fans rally again. Ospreay fights back up, throws body shots, but Naito ROCKS him again. Naito whips, Ospreay reverses but Naito reverses again. Naito swings into a full nelson, but he arm-drags free! Naito dodges and whips but Ospreay handsprings to NEURALIZER!
Fans fire up while both men are down. Ospreay sits up and grits his teeth. Ospreay waits on Naito to get up, but Naito is slow. Ospreay fireman’s carries to then SNAKE EYES and BOOT! Ospreay goes to the apron and fans fire up with him. Ospreay aims at Naito, springboards and PIP PIP CHEERIO! Cover, TWO! Ospreay is annoyed but fans continue to rally. Ospreay drags Naito back up, reels him in, but Naito resists the lift. Ospreay keeps trying but Naito flails. Ospreay CLUBS Naito, throws a quick Kowada Kick, then CHOPS Naito off his feet! Naito gets up but Ospreay reels him in, only for Naito to fight the bomb!
Naito ducks the lariat to BACKBREAKER into the LEG HOOK NELSON! Naito slaps Ospreay around but Ospreay still endures. Ospreay moves around, but Naito drags him from ropes! Fans rally, Naito puts on more pressure, but Ospreay kicks his way around! ROPEBREAK! Fans fire up as Red Shoes counts, and Naito lets Ospreay go. Fans rally as Naito stands and Ospreay drags himself up the ropes. Naito hammerlocks and half nelsons but Ospreay fights off the lift! Naito ripcords but Ospreay ducks the elbow. Naito CLUBS Ospreay, dodges a haymaker, then ROCKS Ospreay! Naito runs, into the Tiger Wall Kick and ENZIGURI! But Naito rebounds, into a SPANISH FLY!!
Fans are thunderous as both men are down again! Ospreay and Naito sit up, talk some trash, and then get forehead to forehead. Naito throws a forearm but Ospreay gives it back. Naito grins and forearms Ospreay again! Ospreay ROCKS Naito back! Ospreay eggs Naito on so Naito ROCKS Ospreay! Ospreay roars and fans fire up, and Ospreay throws another forearm! Naito gives another, and they go back and forth! Fans rally up as the speed picks up! Ospreay fires off a flurry, then CHOPS!! Naito staggers and Ospreay waits on him. Naito comes back to SLAP Ospreay! Ospreay grins and fans fire up!
Ospreay blocks a kick, ducks the enziguri but Naito dodges Hidden Blade to TORNADO- NO! Ospreay blocks to suplex and BRAINBUSTER! But Ospreay holds on, brings Naito back up, suplexes but Naito RANAS! Cover, TWO!! Ospreay escapes in time but Naito gets him for the TORNADO DDT! Fans are thunderous again while both men are down. Naito and Ospreay stir and Naito sits up first. Naito crawls his way over, drags Ospreay up, and throws heavy back elbows! Ospreay drops to a knee, but Naito brings him up for more heavy elbows! Ospreay drops again but he grabs at Naito. Naito brings Ospreay up for even more heavy elbows!
Ospreay falls over backwards, and the tape on his shoulders is coming off! Naito hammerlocks, half nelsons, and hits GLORIA! Cover, TWO! Ospreay is still in this but Naito is still smiling. Naito brings Ospreay up again, wrenches the arm, but Ospreay RAMS him into the corner! Ospreay runs in but Naito alley-oops him into the corner! Naito then sits Ospreay up on the top rope backwards, and climbs up behind him! Naito goes up to SUPER POISON-RANA!!! Cover, TWO!!! Ospreay survives and fans are thunderous! Naito aims from the corner as Ospreay rises, then he runs in to CORRIENDO SHIKI- NO, Ospreay blocks Destino!
But Ospreay also holds Naito up! Ospreay ties up the legs, MAGIC CROSS DRIVER!! Cover, TWO!! Fans are thunderous again as Ospreay aims from the corner! Naito sits up, Ospreay rushes in, HIDDEN BLADE!!! But Ospreay isn’t satisfied with that, he drags Naito up! Underhook and lift, STORM- DESTINO!!! Naito turns things around but both men are down! The fans are electric as both men stir on the mat! Naito crawls over to Ospreay, drags him up, but Ospreay BOOTS! Naito ENZIGURIS! Naito scoops but Ospreay slips out to HOOK KICK! Ospreay calls his shot, springboards, but Naito ducks the OsCutter! SPINEBUSTER!!
Naito hauls Ospreay up to wrench and- NO, Ospreay turns it, CHELSEA GRIN!! Fans fire up as Ospreay aims again! Ospreay runs in, but Naito ducks the blade! CORRIENDO SHIKI DESTINO!!!! Cover, TWO?!?!? Ospreay survives and no one can believe it!! Naito roars, drags Ospreay up, and tilt-o-whirls, DESTI- NO!! Ospreay slips out to HIDDEN BLADE!!! Cover, TWO?!?!?!? Maybe 2.999!! The fans can’t believe it, Khan can’t believe, commentary can’t believe it! But Ospreay drags Naito back up, reels him in and underhooks, for STORMBREAKER!!!! Cover, OSPREAY WINS!!!
Winner: Will Ospreay, by pinfall (advances to the finals)
After fighting back from an 0-2 start, after fighting his heart out here, Naito falls before the Climax! If this is truly Naito’s last G1 Climax, if this is truly his last year with NJPW, has it all ended here and now? Or can Naito find another path to Wrestle Kingdom?
As for Ospreay, he holds up his IWGP US Heavyweight Championship and Rev-Pro British Heavyweight Championship high as he stands over Naito, and then again as he stands on the corner. Khan waves the banner of the United Empire, then brings the mic to Ospreay. The fans applaud, but Ospreay says, “Louder, Budokan! Louder!! Motto! Gentlemen, I said MORE! I want more!” Fans applaud louder, and Ospreay is happy. “Naito, good showing. One more, onegaishimasu. This doesn’t get spoken about enough. In May, I nearly died! I had a kidney infection that nearly killed me! And in three months, three months! After saying I could’ve died, I’m in the G1 Final!”
Fans applaud that heart, and Ospreay says his opponent “is a man who seemingly, I can’t beat on my own. In the seven matches Ospreay and Okada have had, Okada has one SIX of them. SIX. Everyone is now doubting me, because they think I can’t beat Okada. I’ve seen it done with my own eyes! I have seen AJ Styles beat Okada. I have seen Tanahashi beat Okada. I’ve seen NAITO beat Okada! Hell, I’ve even see Jay White dethrone Okada. Know what makes me different? I know in my heart, I know I’m better than all those guys! I know I’m the best wrestler in the world today!!” Fans applaud that, he has a case for it.
Ospreay lists off his accomplishments: Best of the Super Juniors; the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship; the New Japan Cup; the British Heavyweight Championship; the NEVER Openweight Championship; the IWGP US Heavyweight Championship; and the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship!! There’s just one more to go! “And believe me. Believe me when I say this. Believe me, I’m not gonna lose. I will beat Okada! I will lead NJPW out of the Dark Ages, and I will bring it back tot he light! Okada, matta ashita <I’ll be waiting tomorrow.> See you at the top!” The Kingpin vows to go from Grand Slam to ULTIMATE Champion in NJPW, will he succeed?
A great event as the penultimate night of the G1 this year. Yes, I skipped a lot of matches, and I wish I had time to see that 8 Man with Tanahashi, Yano, Finlay & Kushida, because it saw the return of the Good Brothers to Japan. But Tanahashi’s team won thanks to some sneaky moves from Yano. I wonder if anyone from Tanahashi’s team will go after Karl Anderson’s NEVER Openweight Championship. Any one of them would be a great opponent for Anderson, but especially Tanahashi.
But we got awesome G1 matches, as to be expected. Tama has been running strong, but it sure seems like everyone knows how to counter the Gun Stun… It makes sense that Okada wins, he could potentially go back-to-back as the G1 Climax winner. But given that, I don’t think he will. Ospreay VS Naito was a great choice to be the main event between the two semifinal matches, and honestly I didn’t think Naito was going to lose. This is supposed to be his last year, so I thought he’d get to the finals before losing and having to worry about what’s next.
Ospreay has a great promo and he does make a great argument for winning the finals. Ospreay’s checked off almost everything to do in NJPW as a singles wrestler, even more than what Okada has done. Ospreay getting the honor of being the first to check everything off the list would be huge.
My Score: 9/10
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