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.
- Mandy Rose w/ Dana Brooke VS Shayna Baszler w/ Nia Jax; Baszler wins.
- Ricochet VS AJ Styles w/ Omos; Styles wins, Ricochet is NOT in the Men’s Royal Rumble.
- Six Man Tag: The Hurt Business VS Matt Riddle & The Lucha House Party; The Hurt Business wins.
- Jeff Hardy VS Jaxson Ryker w/ Elias; Hardy wins, by disqualification.
- Asuka VS Alexa Bliss; 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 after seeing her set Orton on fire, Asuka hopes it isn’t Alexa’s dark side.
It’s the WrestleMania Report!
It’s Hank E. Panki, totally not Triple H, and Anita Reelman, totally not Stephanie McMahon. Don’t question it. But they’re sending it over to the weatherman, Sunny McCloud. Nope, it’s Roman Reigns, and there is no weatherman. Roman sits at the rightful place as Head of the Table. He’s not going to play along. But if they were, Paul Heyman is sure someone would say, “The extended forecast-” Paul, no. Just give it to them straight. Heyman says Tampa Bay’s Raymond James Stadium will be the home of WrestleMania 37! Wow, big news! It’s going to be buck wild this April! And how great that they get to host WrestleMania again, for the first time.
But some real breaking news in sports, “Hailey Mary” and not Sasha Banks has the exclusive! But then an assistant makes sure she got the report about how WrestleMania is coming back to AT&T Stadium for 2022. Uh, y-yes, now she does! Now shoo. But you heard it here first! WrestleMania 38 will be right here in Texas! It doesn’t get much bigger than that! Dropping exclusives like it’s hot! And what a spectacle! Hank’s a spectacle. Rawr. But now, to Huge Kantseeme for entertainment news! Hugh? Hello? We can’t see him. It’s totally not John Cena! They love it when he does that. And you know what Huge loves? LA!
CUT! When Cena- er, uh, Hugh, says that, it sounds so fake. Um, Hugh, we’re live… Okay, he’ll try again. “Y’know what else I love? LA! That’s right, Hollywood!” Who doesn’t love drama? Cue zoom. Here’s some drama: WrestleMania is going Hollywood in 2023! PLOT TWIST! Thanks, Hugh, but you got a bit carried away. It will be in SoFi Stadium, or as Anita likes to call it, “So FINE Stadium.” Nothing like a good giggle. And that wraps things up for the WrestleMania Report. And we’re good. Phew! HHH and Stephanie take off the “costumes” and are pretty sure no one realized it was them all along. But yes, WrestleMania is all set for the next THREE YEARS! Who will make it to each of them? Will you be there?
Raw presents… Alexa’s Playground…!
Alexa goes to her swing and welcomes us back. She is so excited we’re all here, but before we get started, she wants to address The Viper in the room. “Randy, last week, I was just coming out here to talk to you. Y’know, clear the air. And then, things got a little… heated!” Alexa laughs at her own joke and says if Orton needs some sunblock, just let her know. But either way, good to see he’s feeling okay. Now to tonight’s very special guest! Alexa is so excited to invite her opponent, the Women’s Tag Team and Raw Women’s Champion, ASUKA! Asuka makes her entrance, and joins Alexa on the swings. Alexa says no, that’s not her seat. Oh, okay…
Is Asuka okay? Yes, yes! Asuka is okay. Sorry, Alexa wasn’t talking to her. Oh, okay. Asuka says she’ll just stand over here by the slide… They giggle, and Asuka more nervously than Alexa. Alexa knows they have a match tonight but for now, let’s have fun! Alexa has breaking news! It’s big news! Should she tell them or do you want to, invisible friend? Okay, she’ll say it. Alexa is entering the Women’s Rumble! Asuka wishes Alexa good luck. But wait. If Alexa wins the Rumble match and Asuka is still champion, then they might face off at WrestleMania! Asuka says that would be her honor! And Asuka is a big fan of Alexa’s! Really? Yes! Thank you, that’s so sweet! Well of course! YOWIE WOWIE~!
Alexa doesn’t like Asuka saying that. Asuka hopes Alexa still wants to have fun. Let’s dance! It’s Asuka’s theme, but Asuka still dances. Alexa doesn’t want that. Alexa says STOP IT! Asuka’s music stops and Asuka is a bit startled. Alexa’s friend says something and Alexa says they’re right. It wasn’t supposed to be like this. If Alexa had done something differently, he’d still be here… Asuka says it’ll be okay. Asuka tries to explain in Japanese, and then says The Fiend’s still here. “Do NOT say his name!” Alexa then gets a smile as she waves at the rocking horse. Asuka is spooked and leaves the ring. Alexa switches to the rocking horse, but will she flip the switch when the bell rings?
Backstage interview with The Miz and John Morrison.
Can they give us a hint at what they have in store for Goldberg tonight on The Dirt Sheet? Oh, she wants to know? Of course Sarah wants to know! “I WANT THE SCOOP~!” NO! No spoilers. Tune in like everyone else. But what Miz will say is that what is in store will definitely be controversial. Controversy creates cash, much like the Money in the Bank. CHACHING!
Raw hears from Jeff Jarrett!
Double J has a prediction for Drew McIntyre VS Goldberg for the WWE World Championship at the Royal Rumble PPV. Jarrett knows both men, but he quotes his old buddy, Toby Keith. The hook goes, “I ain’t as good as I once was, but I’m good once as I ever was.” That will be the story of the Rumble, because we’ll see Goldberg’s Spear, Jackhammer and win for a NEW WWE World Champion! Will McIntyre deny that prediction when the match actually happens?
Mandy Rose w/ Dana Brooke VS Shayna Baszler w/ Nia Jax!
While the #SexyMuscleFriends go to the ring together, the Queen of Spades gives fair warning backstage. “Last week, I made Mandy Rose tap out, and then I threw Mandy Rose out of the ring like an empty can of White Claw.” She promises to do the same thing tonight, and then everyone the Women’s Rumble better watch out because she’ll do the same to them. It doesn’t matter if it’s Charlotte, Bayley, or even her own tag team partner. Nia is surprised by that, but it IS every woman for themselves. Nia says she’s been the one carrying the team, but will Shayna prove she can do bad all by herself after the break?
Raw returns and Nia joins commentary as the bell rings. Mandy and Shayna tie up, Mandy shoves Shayna then trips her up with a leg. Shayna gets up, Mandy waistlocks, rolls Shayna up, ONE! Shayna kicks Mandy’s legs out, KNEES her down then covers, TWO! Shayna drags Mandy around and clamps on with a neck wrench. Mandy endures and Dana coaches her up. Shayna drives an elbow into Mandy’s face! Shayna CLUBS Mandy, Mandy hits back but Shayna CLUBS and KICKS her around! Shayna throws forearms, drags Mandy up for knees, then snapmares to KICK her again! Cover, TWO!
Shayna is back on Mandy with the neck wrench. Mandy fires up, throws body shots but Shayna throws her down by her hair! Shayna clamps onto Mandy again, pulls on arm arm for a half straitjacket, then stands on the arm! It’s a new take on the ARM STOMP! Dana checks on Mandy but Shayna tells her to back off. Mandy rolls Shayna up, TWO!! Mandy runs Shayna over but shakes out the bad arm. Mandy ducks a kick and uses the good arm to lariat over and over! And hit a FLAPJACK! Mandy manages a kip up, runs in and powers Shayna to a corner! Mandy fires off forearms, the ref backs her off but Mandy comes back to throw more forearms and even stomps!
The ref counts, Mandy backs off but Shayna gets around to KICK the bad arm! Shayna wrenches that arm, but Mandy fires off forearms with the other! Mandy pulls Shayna’s hair but Shayna twists the arm! KEYLOCK TAKEDOWN! KIRAFUDA KLUTCH! Mandy taps, Shayna wins!
Winner: Shayna Baszler, by submission
The Queen of Spades took care of this by herself, just as she said she would! Nia says Mandy almost had her, but Shayna argues it wasn’t even close. But Dana sneaks up and dropkicks Nia into Shayna, and they both hit post! The Flex Appeal gets away with Mandy, and they aren’t out of the running yet! Will one of these women win the Women’s Rumble to go after the Raw Women’s Championship?
Shayna and Nia argue backstage.
Shayna says that was Nia’s fault for getting involved but Charly Caruso comes by to ask about them not getting along. Well they’ve never really gotten along, even as champions. But meanwhile, the current champions, Charlotte has her daddy issues and Asuka is being creeped out by Alexa, are they really getting along? In fact, now is the perfect time to get that rematch for the titles! Nia says that’s actually a good idea. They go off to find management, will they regain the gold before getting into the Rumble?
Backstage interview with Charlotte Flair.
Before discussing the tag titles, how uncomfortable was it for her to see Lacey wearing one of Ric’s robes? Ever since stepping foot in the ring, people accuse her of living off her family name. Now there is literally a woman draping herself on Ric’s arm, begging for her 15 minutes of fame, and living off the name! Charlotte knows that Lacey is just using Ric to get to her. But Charlotte’s been learning from Ric her entire life. She just never went down that path. Maybe Charlotte needs to rethink things, because one person can only take so much trash. Lacey may have one of Ric’s robes, but she will never has Charlotte’s crown.
Adam Pearce talks with Ricochet.
We know that there are superstars who need to earn their way into the Rumble match. And this match is perfect timing. A win can go a long way towards opportunities. Ricochet is just glad to have this opportunity. Maybe this is the start to his road to WrestleMania. But then AJ Styles comes by and says it’s funny that Pearce is talking about opportunities. Who would take advice from Pearce, who just literally ran away from the Universal Championship? Yes, he would’ve lost, been embarrassed, but at least he’d have his dignity. Look at Ricochet. Ricochet is going to lose, but he’ll lose with dignity.
Ricochet says Styles has selective amnesia, like 50 First Dates. What’s he talking about? Well, Drew Barrymore’s character couldn’t remember a thing past a certain date because- Styles knows the movie! It’s in his top ten, right next to The Notebook. What’s he talking about here tonight? Ricochet’s point is that Styles has forgotten about TLC when he got embarrassed- Hey! That was The Miz’s fault! Well all Ricochet knows is that Styles will need more than a seven foot giant by his side to prove Ricochet doesn’t belong in the Rumble. The One and Only heads out to the ring, but will he be better than Phenomenal once again?
Ricochet VS AJ Styles w/ Omos!
Styles hangs back long enough to tell Pearce that he doesn’t like him anymore. And when he doesn’t like someone, Omos doesn’t like someone. Omos literally looks down on Scrap Daddy, but what will Pearce do about it, after the break?
Raw returns and Styles makes his entrance. The bell rings, Styles and Ricochet circle, tie up, and Styles powers Ricochet to a corner. The ref counts, Styles lets off and Ricochet circles with him again. They tie up, Styles headlocks, Ricochet tries to power out but Styles holds on tight. Styles grinds Ricochet down, Ricochet rolls to a cover, ONE and Styles holds on. They get up, Ricochet tries to power out again but Styles still holds on. Ricochet makes it a cover again, ONE! Ricochet throws body shots, powers out this time but blocks Styles’ kick to hit an arm-drag! Ricochet whips, Styles gets around to backslide, but Ricochet rolls through. Styles reels Ricochet in but Ricochet trips him up to jackknife bridge! TWO, and Styles tilt-o-whirls to a sunset flip, TWO!
Styles wants the Clash but Ricochet pops free to get around and roll him up, TWO! Ricochet dodges, runs, and headscissors! Styles pops up but into a RANA! Styles is back again, Ricochet rolls and handsprings to headscissor again! Styles is dizzy and flounders, into a dropkick! Ricochet talks some smack to Omos as Styles flounders out. Ricochet runs, slides, but Styles catches him, only for Ricochet to still headscissor him! Ricochet is getting fired up, but Omos glares at him from around the way. Ricochet puts Styles in and follows, but Styles runs in. Ricochet sends Styles out, slingshots, but Omos catches him!
The ref warns Omos to set Ricochet down, and Omos DROPS Ricochet! Ricochet is down but not out yet, and Raw goes to break!
Raw returns and Styles drags Ricochet up to bump him off buckles. Styles scoops Ricochet for a RUNNING BACKBREAKER! Ricochet writhes but Styles paces around. Styles sits Ricochet up to dig a knee in and clamp on with the chinlock. Ricochet endures, fights his way up and throws body shots. Jawbreaker! Styles staggers, but he dodges to waistlock and GERMAN SUPLEX! Ricochet lands on his feet! Ricochet dodges Styles, runs and tilt-o-whirls for the DDT! Both men are down and Omos stares as fans clap on their screens. Ricochet gets to ropes and uses them to get up, and he counter punches Styles then fires off strikes! DISCUS LARIAT! Cover, TWO!!
Ricochet is frustrated but Omos is relieved as Styles survives. Ricochet fireman’s carries but Styles fights out. Ricochet mule kicks a leg then back flips into the DEAD LIFT GERMAN! Bridging cover, TWO! Ricochet grows further frustrated but he watches Styles stand. Ricochet runs out from the corner but Styles dodges. Styles runs in, Ricochet elbows back, QUEBRADA into a LARIAT! Styles gets Ricochet up, SNAP BRAIN BUSTER!! Cover, TWO!! Styles fireman’s carries Ricochet for USHIGOROSHI! Cover, TWO! Omos says it’s alright but Styles is still surprised Ricochet survives!
Styles goes to a corner, goes to the apron, and takes aim. Styles springboards, but Ricochet hits the RECOIL!! Both men are down, Ricochet crawls to the cover, TWO!! Styles survives and Ricochet is beside himself! Ricochet goes to the corner, climbs up top, but Styles trips him up! Ricochet lands hard on his stomach and flops to the apron! Omos coaches Styles as Ricochet drags himself up. Styles goes to the corner, brings Styles up, but Ricochet hotshots! Ricochet aims, slingshots, but into Styles’ suplex, that rebounds off the ropes! Into the STYLES CLASH!!! Cover, Styles wins!
Winner: AJ Styles, by pinfall
Now that was a PHENOMENAL way to win a match! But once again, Styles denies another entry into the Rumble, will he continue to eliminate superstars before they ever get in?
Raw presents The Dirt Sheet!
The Miz and John Morrison are in the ring and Morrison welcomes us. When you want to enjoy a top tier steak dinner, you’ve gotta be ready to pay the bill. And Miz says tonight is the biggest edition of Dirt Sheet ever. It will be extra dirty because tonight’s guest is someone who everyone knows and loves, someone who was a childhood hero to many adults, and could be a hero to an entirely new generation if he defeats Drew McIntyre for the WWE World Championship at the Royal Rumble PPV! Welcome the biggest guest in Dirt Sheet history, one of the most intimidating men to ever step inside the wrestling ring, the legendary WWE Hall of Famer, it’s GOLD~ BERG!
Goldberg makes his entrance and both Miz ‘n’ Morrison are excited. Wait a minute, that’s GILLBERG! And he still gets hurt by those sparklers. Morrison and Miz can’t believe “Goldberg” is more massive than before. Now, the Rumble will be one of the most important matches in his career, it’ll be like Godzilla VS King Kong! How has he been preparing? Well first, he bashes his head into the wall because he’s so pumped up. The adrenaline is flowing, the veins are hyped and he’s foaming at the mouth! There’s smoke coming out of his nose and fire out of his ass! Okay just be careful not to hit a ring post. And careful with those chairs, they’re not cheap.
Wait, Drew McIntyre is here?! Miz and Morrison are surprised most of all! Wait, that’s not even close. That’s an impersonator with a wig! And he has a tiny toy sword! “That’s the ‘Clayless,'” says Samoa Joe. Miz and Morrison give Drew “Mockingtire” roll in, and the Dirt Sheet just keeps getting bigger! Mockingtire says he is here to meet his opponent face to face. Let’s not get into fisticuffs, Dirt Sheet is classy. Use your words. Does Mockingtire have anything to say to Gil- er, Goldberg? “I’m gonna kick yer ass back to 1998, and then I’m gonna go home and eat some haggis!”
Whoa, c’mon, the Scottish accent is more like this, mate. Are they going to cut and go again? NO IT’S LIVE! Morrison, where did you find this guy? New Jersey… No, the best actors are from New York, LA and Cleveland! Cleveland?! What? Because of Miz! But now this show is a train wreck! What are they even doing? Gillberg? Really? Miz, you’re making this awkward. Oh HE’s making this awkward?! This was MORRISON’S stupid idea! It’s a GREAT idea! It’s comedy gold! Pff, it’s not even comedy silver! Gillberg speaks up and does his crazy Goldberg face. Oh shut up! And let’s just do the thing.
“Hey, John~!” “Yeah?” “Is Goldberg going to lose at the Royal Rumble?” Of course! CORRECT! But is Drew McIntyre also going to lose at the Rumble? Duh. CORRECT! But how can that be? Because The Miz will cash in his MITB contract. COOOOOOOOOOOORRECT! “You are looking at the future WWE Champion, because I’m the Miz! And III’M! NEXT!” Miz is finally getting serious, but will he make the real Goldberg and McIntyre the butt of his joke?
Six Man Tag: The Hurt Business VS Matt Riddle & The Lucha House Party!
The WWE United States Champion put the hurt on The Bro both last week in their title match, but also earlier tonight just to bully him. But will the Golden Lynx and King of the Ropes help Riddle rebound while also getting themselves an opportunity at the Raw Tag Team Championships?
Raw returns as Lince Dorado and Gran Metalik make their entrance, followed by Riddle. Alexander insists he start and Metalik starts with him. Alexander kicks low, clubs away on Metalik then talks trash. Alexander throws forearms and puts Metalik in a corner to whip corner to corner., Metalik boots back, runs and slings but into a back suplex! Metalik lands on his feet, dodges but Alexander dropkicks! Alexander says that’s how you do it, but MVP says don’t talk about it, just do it. Alexander doesn’t want to tag and he CHOPS Metalik! He scoops Metalik to a backbreaker! Alexander stares Benjamin down as he lifts Metalik again, but Metalik slips out to get to his corner and tag in Lince!
Metalik boots Alexander away, Lince jumps in and gets a boost for the FLYING RANA! Lince clubs away on Alexander, wrenches, but Alexander ROCKS him with a right! Alexander CLUBS Lince, and now he wants a tag, only for Benjamin and Lashley to let him handle this. Alexander turns around into CHOPS! Lince QUEBRADAS! Cover, TWO!! Alexander narrowly escapes but Lince clubs away! Lince gets the arm, Alexander fights up and pulls the mask! Alexander puts Lince on the ropes, throws body shots, and Benjamin tags himself in. The tag champions glare at each other, then Benjamin circles with Lince. Lince rolls Benjamin, TWO, Benjamin CLOBBERS Lince!
Benjamin puts Lince in a corner, whips him corner to corner hard, and storms over to cover, TWO! Tag to Lashley, the Hurt Business whip and double shoulder Lince down! Lashley throws Lince to a corner, fires off haymakers, then bumps Lince off buckles. Alexander tags himself in and drags Lince up for forearms. Benjamin tags himself in and MVP wants his guys to stop arguing. Benjamin keeps Lince in the corner and he fires off haymakers and stomps. Lince tries to fight out but Alexander tags himself back in. Alexander whips, Lince handsprings, GOLDEN REWIND! Both men are down, MVP says this is what happens!
Alexander drags Lince from his corner in time, and tags Benjamin in. The tag champions argue again, and then Benjamin shoves Alexander right out of the ring! MVP keeps Alexander back, Lashley tags in, but Raw goes to break.
Raw returns and Alexander is on Lince with an armlock. Metalik and Riddle rally for Lince as he endures and fights up. Lince clubs but Alexander WRINGS his arm out! Cover, TWO! Alexander smothers Lince with a chinlock and reaches out for a tag. Lashley takes it and he drags Lince up to bring him around for a scoop and SLAM! Lashley asks why Alexander has a problem but MVP says to worry about that later. Lashley tags Benjamin, Benjamin drags Lince around and TOSSES him across the way! Benjamin drags Lince back up, snap suplexes, then takes his time looming over Lince. Alexander tags himself back in and Benjamin contains his frustration.
Alexander bumps Lince off buckles, fires off hands, but lets off at the ref’s count of 4. Alexander hoists Lince up top, throws hands, but Lince throws them back! Alexander staggers, Lince adjusts and leaps, BIG crossbody! Lince bounces off the cover but both men are down! The fans clap on their screens, hot tags to Riddle and Benjamin! The Bro spins Benjamin around for a PELE! Kip up and forearm smash! Riddle runs to DECK Lashley, then he forearms Benjamin again! Benjamin holds off the suplex to throw knees, then a powerbomb lift. Riddle fights out, ROUDNHOUSES then Penalty Kicks, only to miss! Benjamin rolls, Riddle rolls through, FINAL FLASH! Cover, TWO!
MVP panics as Riddle goes up, FLOATING BRO FLOPS! MVP shouts as Riddle crawls, hot tag to Metalik! Metalik springboards to crossbody! Then he brings Benjamin up to knuckle lock and CHOP! Metalik goes up, up and RANA! Metalik runs, wheelbarrows but Benjamin SLAMS Metalik down! Alexander tags in again, for a BRAIN BUSTER! Alexander gets fired up but Lashley tags himself in. Lashley runs past Alexander to DECK Riddle, then SPEAR Metalik! But Lashley isn’t done, he puts on the HURT LOCK! Metalik taps, The Hurt Business wins!
Winners: The Hurt Business, by submission
Lashley sees Alexander and Benjamin arguing again, but Riddle CLOBBERS Lashley! Riddle gets away because the Hurt Business isn’t on the same page! Will they be able to pull things together to keep the gold in their possession?
Elias talks with Jaxson Ryker backstage.
After the miscommunication last week, The Drifter hopes he and Ryker don’t misunderstand each other this time. When Elias told Ryker not to help him, he didn’t mean it, he was being subtle. Ryker took it literally, signals got crossed. Signals? This isn’t Thomas the Tank Engine, this is Monday Night Raw! This is the WWE! And WWE stands for #WalkWithElias. That Ryker understands. Now Ryker did not walk with Elias last week. But tonight, when they take on Hardy again, what is Ryker’s mission? To finish what Elias started, embody the Universal Truth, and beat Hardy until he accepts the truth. Good. They head out, and Ryker double checks. Is Elias not helping in the match or “not” helping in the match? Just go…
Drew McIntyre speaks!
He’s still asymptomatic for COVID and is feeling stronger than ever. But he’s still at home. He had a good laugh at Gillberg and the mini-McIntyre “with the body of a melted candle.” But the WWE is like the circus, with a little bit of everything for everyone. There are clowns like Miz ‘n’ Morrison, then the lions like McIntyre. And sometimes, the lions eat the clowns. McIntyre promises to see them again really soon.
But that wasn’t reality. The reality is, the championships aren’t given. But they can be taken, and in McIntyre’s case, it could be at a Spear or Jackhammer’s notice. McIntyre respects Goldberg, but he won’t hold back to keep his title. McIntyre never misses. He will be prepared, focused and intense. That same intensity he saw in Goldberg’s eyes. Not the kind in the delusions he had or the words Goldberg put in McIntyre. McIntyre means the intensity when he insulted Goldberg. That look was the real Goldberg!
McIntyre suggests Goldberg bring that guy to the Rumble because that’s what the title deserves. If he doesn’t, McIntyre will eat him alive in two minutes. But if Goldberg wants to try again, McIntyre will be back on Raw next week! Will there be thunder and lightning from these two titans even before the Rumble?
Jeff Hardy VS Jaxson Ryker w/ Elias!
The Charismatic Enigma knew The Drifter’s thumb was not broken last week, and he made sure Elias did not get away unscathed. But while Elias had a helping hand in Ryker’s win over the living legend, will they not get away with it again?
The bell rings and Ryker runs in but Hardy dodges him! Hardy puts Ryker in a corner, rams his shoulder in over and over, but Ryker turns things around to throw body shots! The ref counts, Ryker bumps Hardy off buckles then watches him flounder around. Ryker toys with Hardy, Hardy hits back but Ryker CLUBS him down! Ryker drags Hardy up, puts him in the corner and whips him corner to corner. Hardy goes up, mule kicks back then headscissors Ryker to ropes! Ryker flounders up but Hardy rallies with forearms! Atomic drop, leg splitting leg drop! Basement dropkick and a splash added on, cover, ONE!
Hardy keeps his cool and watches Ryker stand. Ryker blocks the kick but not the spinning back kick! Hardy runs in to corner splash, then he whips corner to corner, only to miss. Ryker runs back in and CLOBBERS Hardy! Elias likes that as Ryker covers, TWO! Ryker drops ax handles on Hardy again and again, then rains down right hands! The ref counts, Ryker lets off, and he drags Hardy up to back suplex! Cover, TWO! Ryker drags Hardy into a chinlock and grinds him down! Hardy endures, fights up and throws body shots to then jawbreaker free! Kick and TWIST OF FURY! Hardy throws off his shirt, climbs up top, but Elias again interferes! The ref saw it this time, that’s a disqualification!
Winner: Jeff Hardy, by disqualification
Ryker is a bit upset, didn’t they agree Elias was not going to help? Elias thought they agreed he was “not” going to help, aka he would. But it doesn’t matter as Hardy WRECKS Elias with a dropkick! Ryker is after Hardy again but gets another Twist! He powers out, Hardy dodges but runs into a SCRAPBUSTER! Elias gets in to stand tall with Ryker, and it looks like this issue is not over. What will it take to finally get Hardy to #WalkWithElias?
Asuka VS Alexa Bliss!
The encounter earlier tonight was eerie and scary, but now the Empress and Lil’ Miss Bliss will battle it out! Will Asuka be able to shrug off the chill up her spine? Or will she be burned by the darkness lurking inside Alexa?
The bell rings and Alexa smiles as she and Asuka circle. They tie up, go around, and Asuka wrenches to a wristlock. Alexa rolls, wrenches back, but Asuka moves around to spin, wrench and wristlock again. Alexa steps through, slips through and headlocks. Asuka fights out, pushes Alexa and then follows to run her over! Asuka has fun now as she dances around, but then she runs, Alexa trips her up, and Alexa Oklahoma Rolls, TWO! Alexa sits and smiles and Asuka runs in, but Alexa ducks the kick to roll her up! TWO, and Asuka fires off palm strikes, body shots and a BACK HAND! Asuka shoves, pop-up KNEES Alexa down, then SLIDING WIZARD! Cover, TWO!
Asuka keeps cool as Alexa is smiling about getting hit. Asuka sits Alexa up and says no more fun, she wants her lock! Alexa resists the armlock and chinbar, pries free, but Asuka wrangles her back down. Alexa fights again, gets up, and gest to ropes! The ref calls for the break and Asuka lets off fast. Alexa is outside, Asuka runs and slides but Alexa gets under. Alexa gets in the ring, and then the screens start to change? The lights are going down! What is this warped circus music?! Raw goes to break while things get creepier!
Raw returns once more and Alexa is standing there, but has transformed! Her makeup, hair, outfit, it’s all different! Asuka is as confused as we are as to how she did this! Asuka circles but Alexa doesn’t budge. Alexa watches Asuka then finally takes a step. They circle slowly, commentary doesn’t even want to talk too loudly. Asuka swings a back hand but Alexa easily avoids it! And the same for the roundhouse kick! Alexa deflects Asuka’s strikes, ducks one kick but not the mule kick! Asuka runs but into a shoulder! Alexa’s stoic as Asuka rolls out of the ring. Asuka is getting mad and she gets back in the ring. The two circle again, Asuka blocks Alexa’s punch, POP-UP KNEE!
Alexa staggers to a corner, Asuka runs in, but Alexa does the SPIDER WALK! That’s just like Bray Wyatt! Alexa stands upright, wipes some blood from her mouth, and then just stares at her hand. Asuka waits on Alexa, but Alexa wants to grab at Asuka! Asuka fights off the Mandible Claw! Alexa kicks, Asuka blocks, waistlock but Alexa elbows out! And DECKS Asuka! Cover, TWO!! This dark side of Alexa’s that Asuka was talking about is stoic again as she paces about. Asuka shakes out the cobwebs as she sits up, but Alexa walks over to look at her in the eyes. Alexa lifts Asuka up by her chin, Asuka ROUNDHOUSES! And BACK HANDS! ANOTHER ROUNDHOUSE!!
Asuka fires up, drags Alexa up but Alexa grabs Asuka and smirks! SISTER ABIGAIL!! Cover, Alexa wins!!
Winner: Alexa Bliss, by pinfall
Alexa just pinned Asuka!! And then in a flash, she’s back to her bubbly side! “Let me in!” She spoke with The Fiend’s voice!! Maybe Asuka was right, he IS still here! But if she truly #LetHimIn, will there be any stopping her on the road to WrestleMania?
A really good episode tonight! For starters, less strange copy-paste from last week, and they did continue with stories that got started last week to great effect. I am a little saddened that it seems we’re no longer doing Ricochet VS Retribution if only for now, but I do like how they shifted to make Retribution’s story work against The New Day. They had Ali bring back things that happened all the way back in 2019 when #KofiMania happened for WrestleMania 35. I hope we get Ali VS Kofi out of this, on top of New Day VS the various combinations of Retribution. Ricochet VS AJ Styles was a great match, perhaps one of the most creative ways to get someone into the Styles Clash, and it is interesting that Styles is the gatekeeper to the Men’s Rumble on Raw.
Charlotte VS Peyton was a very good showing for Peyton, even though she loses. They aren’t overdoing things with Lacey and Ric just yet, so it isn’t exactly cringeworthy. Though, the endgame is clearly Lacey using Ric just to get at the tag titles. Shayna beats Mandy Rose down again, but it was pretty good for Dana to get the better of her and Nia. Nia and Shayna want a tag title match and that probably happens on the go-home to the Rumble. I can see the distractions for Charlotte getting the better of the #QueensOfTomorrow, and the titles going back to Nia and Shayna, but there could still be dysfunction on the other end that changes that around.
Dysfunction is also growing in the Hurt Business, and while it’s a bit early, they are acting it out very well. Alexander is too fired up and thinking he’s the one winning everything, but it was a good move for Lashley to take over the match and put this away for the team. LHP is doing a lot with also having their part in the Dusty Rhodes Classic on NXT, but I think that means they can fall back on one show if they’re losing in the other. And I would think Riddle is getting another match for the US Championship, but perhaps after the Rumble. Hardy VS Ryker was better than last week, but the story is still something that they’re clearly trying to force more Elias and Hardy stuff.
The Dirt Sheet having Gillberg and a fake McIntyre was actually a great twist. It was goofy in the right way, and it was made even better with Miz getting serious to top it off. I suppose he does have a point that he can cash in again, or rather “actually” this time, against McIntyre and Goldberg, but that seems like an even worse idea than at TLC if you go by Goldberg’s kayfabe rankings. McIntyre had a good response promo, and it’s great to know he’ll be back already. I don’t expect him and Goldberg to throw hands, but I bet there will be a tease of Goldberg getting hit with a Claymore or McIntyre getting hit with a spear. And Goldberg should prioritize Spear so that he doesn’t have to risk lifting then dropping McIntyre.
The related stories of Orton, Fiend and Alexa just got even more interesting. Orton has an apparently medical lucha mask now, adding a new layer to how creepy he’s being lately. It’s like he’s becoming The Fiend after having burned The Fiend alive in a twisted version of the Santa Clause. And at the same time, Alexa has inherited The Fiend’s powers, too. She really creeped Asuka out, and that’s not so bad, because while Asuka can be scary, Alexa is being a different kind of scary. Giving Alexa her own transformation was a great twist, and this Alexa could probably take the Raw Women’s Championship.
And to be fair, it would be better if we got Asuka VS Twisted Bliss Alexa at Rumble because it’d be a lot for Alexa, even this new form of hers, to win the Rumble when there are many great contenders from both Raw and SmackDown. Bayley and Bianca are a strong rivalry from SmackDown and one of them probably deserves to win so they can challenge Sasha Banks.
My Score: 8.3/10
Mitchell’s WWE 205 Live Results & Report! (3/5/21)
Will the new wave get payback on the OG?
Will Tony Nese & Ariya Daivari put their money where their mouths are?
After the back and forth, ambushes and cheating, the 205 Live OG will have to face Jake Atlas & August Grey head-on, 2v2! Will the new wave wash #PremierDinero away and finally take over the Cruiserweight Division?
- Tony Nese & Ariya Daivari VS Jake Atlas & August Grey; Atlas & Grey win.
- Mansoor VS Curt Stallion; Mansoor wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Tony Nese & Ariya Daivari VS Jake Atlas & August Grey!
To think, all of this started because the Premier Athlete made sure the Persian Lion didn’t lose any money in his own “Daivari Dinero Division” challenge series. Things escalated from there, and now we have another showdown of 205 Live OG and Cruiserweight new wave! But will Nese & Daivari wish they’d just footed the bill back when they had the chance?
The teams sort out and #RetroAG starts with Daivari. They tie up, Daivari waistlocks and trips Grey to then step all over him. Daivari laughs but runs away to the corner before Grey rushes him. Grey waits, Daivari comes back but then tags Nese. Nese and Grey circle, Daivari swipes at Grey but Nese rolls Grey up! ONE, Grey wrenches and has a hammerlock. Nese fights up, gets a leg, gets a cover, ONE! Grey has the arm again and is back on the hammerlock! Fans cheer, Grey shifts to a grounded cording hold then facelock. Grey brings Nese up to wrench, but Daivari talks trash and distracts Grey. Nese ROCKS Grey, tags Daivari, and the OG mug AG!
Daivari stomps Grey, talks trash to the fans, then tags Nese back in. The OG double suplex but AG slips out! Hot tag to Atlas! Atlas rallies with double clotheslines, big elbows, then a wrench and neckbreaker for Daivari! Atlas runs at Nese but is put on the apron. Atlas shoulders into Nese, dumps Daivari out and enziguris Nese away! Atlas climbs up, but Daivari hurries over! Atlas mule kicks Daivari away but Nese goes up to grab at him! Atlas shoves Nese away, Nese says he jammed his leg! The ref checks, and in that distraction, Daivari SHOVES Atlas down! Nese’s leg is just fine and he does jumping jacks before he stomps Atlas down.
Nese drags Atlas up to stomp him at ropes, then bumps him off buckles. Tag to Daivari, Nese RAMS into Atlas and Daivari fires off haymakers! The ref counts, Daivari lets off but clubs Atlas down. Daivari throws hands, whips Atlas back to the corner, and then runs in, into Atlas’ boots! Atlas elbows Nese, ROCKS Daivari, but Daivari mule kicks! Daivari runs to dropkick Atlas down! Daivari talks more trash to Grey, but he turns around to block Atlas’ boot! Daivari spins Atlas but Atlas spins Daivari for a DISCUS LARIAT! Both men crawl, hot tag to Nese and Nese DECKS Grey! Nese stomps Atlas, drags him up and whips him to ropes to CLOBBER him with an elbow! Cover, TWO!
Nese clamps onto Atlas with a rear bearhug! Fans rally up, Atlas endures and fights his way up. Atlas elbows Nese and breaks free! Atlas ROCKS Nese with forearms, but Nese keeps him from Grey! Atlas and Grey reach, but Atlas sunset flips! Nese rolls through but Atlas avoids the mule kick to boot Nese down! Nese tries to stay in the way but Atlas kangaroo kicks from below! Hot tag to Grey! Grey runs and RANAS Nese! And rallies with elbows! BIG Manhattan Drop! Grey runs, hurdles Nese then CLOBBERS him! Daivari mouths off so Grey DECKS him! Grey hoists Nese up, back suplex with a little extra! Cover, TWO! Grey keeps cool as he looms over Nese.
Daivari gets in, Grey spins him and turns him, for the SO MUCH- No! Daivari feeds Grey to Nese’s PREMIER DRIVER! Cover, but Atlas BOOTS it apart! All four men are down after Atlas puts his all into that kick, but the fans rally up! Daivari gets up, whips Atlas but Atlas reverses to send Daivari out! Atlas builds speed and DIVES! Direct hit and down goes Daivari! Nese has Grey, runs to ropes, for a BULLDOG HOTSHOT PLANCHA COMBO! Nese then goes back to the ring for a PREMIER TRIANGLE, but Grey dodges! SUPERKICK! Grey goes up top but Nese SHORYUKENS! Nese brings Grey down but Grey gets the chicken wings! SO MUCH PRETTIER!! Cover, Grey & Atlas win!!
Winners: August Grey & Jake Atlas, by pinfall
The OG get outmaneuvered, and the new wave rises! Will Atlas and Grey soon be the ones running the purple ‘n’ orange?
Backstage interview with Mansoor and Curt Stallion.
Josiah Williams asks these two how they’re feeling after that tag team victory together last week. Stallion can’t complain, and Mansoor thought that was great. Maybe they’ll team again and have a team name! Funny Mansoor should say that, because the Lonestar was thinking #CurtSoor. Well, that’s not bad, but the Star of Saudi Arabia was thinking more #ManStallion. What does Josiah think? He goes with CurtSoor on this one. Well Mansoor doesn’t mind. He does thank Stallion for helping him build his overall record to 40-0. Stallion says that is quite the accomplishment. But none against Stallion.
Josiah moves aside as the tension starts to rise. Is Stallion issuing a challenge? Funny he should ask. How about tonight, they go 40-1. More like 41. But these two shake on it and we have our main event! Will Curt be sore? Or will we be saying, “Man, Stallion is good!”
The Bollywood Boyz speak.
It’s ya bois from BOLLY BOLLY BOLLY, Bollywood, and one half of the supergroup known as #BollyRise, Samir & Sunil Singh! And they’re here to remind Chase Parker & Matt Marthel are part of their team. They called a truce, they are all working together, and yet Ever-Rise has the nerve to leave the Singhs out of going to NXT? And then they get jumped by El Legado! But that’s what the deserved! They’re not Bollywood award winners! The key in any relationship is communication. Next time, call them. But will Samir & Sunil be left hanging the next time Ever-Rise rolls into the Capitol Wrestling Center?
Mansoor VS Curt Stallion!
Quietly, in the background of the Cruiserweight Division, the Star of Saudi Arabia has remained undefeated. His biggest accomplishment was winning the Greatest Battle Royal in his home country, but will he finally be heading for the Cruiserweight Championship? Or will the Lonestar be the lone loss on Mansoor’s record?
The bell rings, the two circle and fans rally up already. Stallion and Mansoor shake hands to show there is still respect, and then they tie up. They’re in a deadlock, but Mansoor manages to get leverage and push Stallion to ropes. Mansoor gives a shove as he lets off, but Stallion keeps his cool. They tie up, Stallion headlocks and hits a takeover. Mansoor pushes with forearms, Stallion pushes to a cover, ONE! Mansoor headscissors but Stallion kips out to again get a headlock takeover. Mansoor pushes his forearm into Stallion, makes it a cover, TWO! Stallion has the headlock again, but Mansoor slips out to a facelock and drags Stallion down to another cover, TWO!
Mansoor facelocks again but Stallion reverses to his own facelock. Mansoor drops to slip around to a hammerlock. Stallion moves around but Mansoor holds on. Mansoor puts more pressure on the hold but Stallion moves around again. Stallion stands, drop toeholds and gets the headlock. Mansoor fights up, powers out but things speed up. Mansoor hurdles, drops and hurdles again to trip Stallion up! Oklahoma Roll, TWO!! Stallion gets up but Mansoor hits a headlock takeover! Mansoor makes it a cover, TWO! Fans rally and duel, Stallion fights up and powers his way to his own headlock.
Mansoor powers out, hurdles gain but Stallion is ready for the trip! Stallion waistlocks, rolls and DEAD LIFT GERMAN SUPLEXES! Bridging cover, TWO!! Stallion knows he was close and he gets Mansoor up again. Stallion facelocks, snap suplexes then drops a knee! Cover, TWO! Mansoor checks his jaw as he sits up but Stallion facelocks again. Stallion drags Mansoor up, Mansoor throws body shots, then Mansoor powers out. Stallion dodges, Mansoor follows, Stallion stops and Mansoor LARIATS! Cover, TWO! Mansoor tries again, TWO! Stallion gets to a corner, Mansoor drags him up and CLUBS him, then CHOPS him! Stallion CHOPS back!
Mansoor forearms, whips Stallion corner to corner, then runs in to clothesline! Facelock and roll, TWO! Mansoor keeps on Stallion with an armlock and chinbar. Fans rally and duel as Stallion endures, and Stallion fights up to arm-drag free, only for Mansoor to drag him back down! Mansoor goes back to the chinbar and cording hold but Stallion fights the grip. Stallion fights up, fireman’s carries, but Mansoor sunset flips! Stallion rolls through to DOUBLE STOMP! Both men are down, fans fire up and Stallion glares as Mansoor gets to ropes. Mansoor drags himself up, swings but Stallion counter punches! And again! Then a ROLLING ELBOW!
Mansoor reverses the whip, Stallions tops and Alabama lifts to the REVERSE NECKBREAKER! Mansoor flounders, Stallion aims from a corner, and Stallion runs corner to corner to forearm smash! Stallion sweeps the legs, KNEES Mansoor, then storms around to run back in! BASEMENT DROPKICK! Stallion fires up and stomps the feet! Stallion yanks Mansoor up, turns him around, and DDT’s to the buckles! Cover, TWO!! Stallion seethes as he covers again, TWO!! Mansoor flounders, Stallion gets the legs and brings him around to a jackknife roll, Alabama lift, but Mansoor fights it!
Stallion resists the piledriver, Mansoor tries a backslide but Stallion flips over, only for Mansoor to underhook him! BUTTERFLY FALCON ARROW! Cover, TWO!! Mansoor is shocked but the CWC is thunderous! Mansoor drags Stallion up as fans rally and duel hard as ever. Stallion is dead weight, but Mansoor still tries to get him up! Stallion revives to HEADBUTT! Mansoor flops out of the ring! Stallion sees that, takes aim and PLANCHAS! Direct hit and Stallion fires up! Stallion puts Mansoor in, climbs up top, and FROG SPLASHES onto knees!! Mansoor saves himself and Stallion is writhing!
Mansoor hurries to the corner and to the top rope! But Stallion anchors a foot! Mansoor fights but Stallion tucks him in, CHEEKY NANDOS HEADBUTT! Stallion climbs up behind Mansoor for the INVERTED SPANISH FLY!! Cover, ROPEBREAK!?! Mansoor’s toe saves his streak! Stallion is seething but fans are fired up! Stallion takes off the elbow pads as Mansoor flounders up. Stallion runs in, Mansoor moves, the flying headbutt gets buckles! Stallion flounders into Mansoor’s SLINGSHOT NECKBREAKER! High stack cover, Mansoor wins!!
Winner: Mansoor, by pinfall
The Saudi Arabia Star’s streak is now 41-0! Stallion manages to stand, and Mansoor shouts to him! Stallion glares at Mansoor as he offers the handshake, but Stallion still takes it! Stallion shows his respect to Mansoor, but when will Stallion ride off into the sunset again? As for Mansoor, between quality and quantity, will his spotless 41 win-loss record be enough to get him a Cruiserweight Championship opportunity?
A great episode, and though only 32 minutes or so, the main event started to feel more like the days when 205 Live was strongest. Now, I’m a bit surprised the main event wasn’t the tag match, given the long running story. But there’s a chance the story isn’t over, even though Atlas and Grey won with a finisher. At this point, I wanna see another No Disqualification Tag Match, also like in 205 Live’s stronger days. Atlas was starting to get an edge in his story with Tommaso Ciampa, Nese and Daivari have proven they have an edge, and seeing Grey tap into that would be pretty cool, too, given how he had story with Thatcher.
Mansoor VS Stallion coming by way of an interview promo was pretty good, as was the promo. I personally think ManStallion is the better name, by the way. But as I said, their match was reminiscent of when 205 Live had Cedric Alexander, Mustafa Ali, Buddy Murphy and a few others. Fans can say whatever they want about the Mansoor streak and the deal with Saudi Arabia (Crown Jewel, Super Showdown, etc.) but Mansoor still puts the work in, is confident in his character, and is not sloppy in the ring by any stretch of the imagination. Now, we still need more Cruiserweights doing things on NXT, not just El Legado brutalizing Breezango and Ever-Rise, but if Mansoor is one of the ones being built up on NXT, I could see it being title VS streak, Escobar VS Mansoor for a TakeOver.
My Score: 8.1/10
Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Results & Report! (3/5/21)
Will Bryan get back in the Fastlane?
SmackDown grants a rematch but ups the ante!
Daniel Bryan either wins in a rematch with Jey Uso IN A STEEL CAGE and goes to Fastlane, or he will ACKNOWLEDGE the Tribal Chief, Roman Reigns!
- The Street Profits VS Sami Zayn & King Corbin; changed to…
- Montez Ford w/ Angelo Dawkins VS King Corbin; Corbin wins.
- Angelo Dawkins w/ Montez Ford VS Sami Zayn; Dawkins wins.
- Dominik Mysterio w/ Rey Mysterio VS Chad Gable w/ Otis; Dominik wins.
- Bianca Belair w/ Sasha Banks VS Shayna Baszler w/ Nia Jax; Belair wins.
- Buddy Murphy VS Cesaro; Cesaro wins.
- Steel Cage Match: Daniel Bryan VS Jey Uso; Bryan wins and will challenge Roman Reigns for the WWE Universal Championship at Fastlane.
PLAY BY PLAY
Michael Cole opens SmackDown in the ring!
As it stands, the WrestleMania main event for the Universal Championship will be Roman Reigns VS Edge. But that could change if the man who started the Yes Movement gets his way! Daniel Bryan heads to the ring! Fans cheer with the Yes Fingers on their ThunderDome screens as Bryan gets a mic and Cole reminds us Bryan will face Roman’s “unhinged cousin” inside the Steel Cage. And if Bryan wins, he gets another chance at the Universal Championship at Fastlane! That would throw a wrench in the plans WWE had in the works of a tag team match, Bryan & Edge VS Roman & Jey. So then why is Bryan forgoing that tag match? Why has he turned his focus on Roman and the title?
Bryan says Cole is making a lot of assumptions, the biggest being that Bryan was even asked to be in a tag match. Not a single person told Bryan about this “great” idea to fight Roman & Jey at Fastlane. No one ran anything by him because they know Bryan “rolls with the punches,” does whatever is asked of him, shows up and works his ass off. So Bryan understands why no one asked him. Edge is the ultimate opportunist, and Roman doesn’t want to defend his title at Fastlane. But the thing is, Bryan is making a change to not be the old Bryan. Bryan sees there’s the dream match, Roman VS Edge. And Bryan gets it, Attitude Era VS The ThunderDome, everyone wants to see that, except for Bryan. And Bryan will do his damnedest to stop it from happening!
So Bryan takes this from here, and throws a video package for himself. It was the SmackDown Elimination Chamber, where Daniel Bryan ran the marathon and made it from start to finish to earn his opportunity at Roman’s title, only for Roman to pounce right then and there. Bryan came close but couldn’t defeat a fresh Roman, and then Edge pounced on Roman. In the present, Bryan says he has lost a lot in his career, and has gotten beaten up a lot in his career. So you think after winning his third Elimination Chamber match, and fighting valiantly against Roman, that loss wouldn’t be a big deal.
But rolling out of the ring, and Edge rolling in to Spear Roman and point at the WrestleMania sign, “never in my life have I ever felt like such a failure.” Bryan knows not everyone knows this, but he doesn’t have a lot of ambition. WWE did personality tests and they found that Bryan had the lowest ambition score they’d ever seen. How is it possible that Bryan is still successful? He isn’t sure, other than that he LOVES pro-wrestling. And if you love what you do, you never work a day in your life, and he’s never had to “work” a day for the last 21 years!
But for the last year, Bryan’s had in the back of his head that he’ll go from wrestler to dad, and put others ahead of him. He let those he saw as the future get opportunities and not him. But Edge hitting Roman and Bryan feeling like an absolute failure is because Bryan failed himself. In that moment, Bryan had a lot more ambition in him than any test could ever show! He looked at the WrestleMania sign and decided HE should be there! Not Roman, not Edge, but BRYAN! Roman and Edge are in the main event because BRYAN loves this! In the last three WEEKS, he’s wrestled more than Edge and Roman in the last three MONTHS!
Bryan wrestles every chance he can because he loves this! And so putting himself on the back burner was a disservice to himself! Bryan knows he can be the absolute BEST! Bryan steps into a steel cage with Jey Uso, and if he wins, eh goes on to Fastlane to face Roman for the Universal Championship! And beating Roman is the only way to main event WrestleMania, and this could be his last chance! But before Bryan can continue his passionate speech, Roman interrupts! Jey and Paul Heyman follow Roman, of course, but the confrontation will be face to face after the break.
SmackDown returns and Roman is now in the ring.
Roman has a mic to say, “I’m looking at the same guy. But you don’t sound like the same guy.” The way Bryan is talking is confusing. And if it’s confusing Roman, than it’s confusing the fans. Bryan is ambitious now? Driven now? No. Bryan is the underdog, the “little guy,” the lottery winner. The one who waits on the opportunity and sometimes it works out. Bryan isn’t ambitious. Men like Roman, and they’re rare, they’re ambitious. Roman has been driven since he was a child. If he wanted it, he takes it. Roman loves the business, too. Bryan doesn’t love this, he NEEDS this. Bryan has nothing else, and that’s not love. Love isn’t based off need but off service and what you’ll do for others.
Roman, for example, loves the WWE. Roman doesn’t need it, it’s everyone who needs him! SmackDown needs Roman! The crew and the cameramen need Roman! Heyman needs Roman, Jey needs Roman, Bryan needs Roman. And after Jey whoops Bryan, Bryan will understand that and know it in his heart. And then, Bryan will acknowledge Roman. If Bryan- Jey snatches Bryan’s mic to tell him not to worry about the title. This is as close as Bryan gets to it! Bryan has to get through Jey and that won’t happen! Bryan wanted the cage, but it isn’t locking Roman out, it’s locking Jey in! And tonight, Jey’s gonna get you! Jey tries to sucker punch Bryan but Bryan throws him out!
Bryan stares Roman down, and Roman sighs. Will Bryan be unstoppable as he goes back down the road to WrestleMania?
The Street Profits VS Sami Zayn & King Corbin!
Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins are up and they want the smoke! But will this rematch with the Great Liberator and Wolf King be a speedbump on the road to WrestleMania and the SmackDown Tag Team Championships?
SmackDown returns and the Profits have mics as Sami makes his entrance. Sami admits, the Profits pulled off a “fluke” over him and Corbin. But tonight, Sami and Corbin will prove it was just luck. Corbin tells Sami that it’s enough. They’re not tag team partners! They’re not friends! Corbin doesn’t even like Sami! Corbin is a SINGLES competitor, so he’ll take on just one of the Profits. Oh, well, their schedules are free. Roode & Ziggler are dodging them so there is a lot of time. So if that’s what Corbin wants, how about he get in the ring to do that thing? Ford wants Corbin, so Dawkins gets Sami? Yep! Sweet, Dawkins gets to be in Sami’s movie!
Dawkins gives a quick shout-out to his boy, JZH, but Sami tries to sort things out. Is this a set up? Is Corbin in on this or something? Sami agreed to a TAG match, you can’t do this to him at the last second! So then it’s one? Tell ’em, fam! The Profits are up, and they want the smoke! Sami is upset, but the first of the now two singles matches begins!
Montez Ford w/ Angelo Dawkins VS King Corbin!
Ford and Corbin circle, tie up, and Corbin knees low! Corbin whips Ford to a corner, Ford goes up and over and handsprings to then dropkick Corbin! And dropkick again! Corbin staggers to ropes., Ford runs in but Corbin gets a SPINEBUSTER! Cover, TWO! Corbin is upset with the ref but the count is the count. Corbin wants Sami to watch this as he drags Ford up. Corbin puts Ford in the corner, traps his arms and fires off body shots! The ref backs Corbin off, he drags Ford back up to whip corner to corner hard! Ford bounces off buckles, Corbin drags him back up and taunts Dawkins as he ripcord back suplexes for a yoyo SLAM!
Corbin taunts Ford, drags him up, but Ford gets around to hop on and be a sleeper hold backpack! Corbin RAMS Ford into buckles, but Ford holds on tight! Corbin pries free, snapmares but Ford handsprings through to mule kick, front kick and dropkick! Ford has Corbin in a corner, hits a splash, then runs, into a pop-up! But Ford turns that into a DDT! Ford kips up to STANDING MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO! Ford keeps his cool as he heads for a corner. Ford hops up, Sami shouts at Dawkins but Ford shouts at Sami. Corbin rolls Ford, Ford rolls through to ENZIGURI! But Corbin still gets Ford for the END OF DAYS!! Cover, Corbin wins!!
Winner: King Corbin, by pinfall
Sami tells Corbin he just helped him so now Corbin has to help Sami! Dawkins wants after Sami, Sami gets on the apron, Dawkins BLASTS Sami off and Sami hits Corbin! Corbin gets mad at Sami but Sami explains that was because of Dawkins! Corbin doesn’t care, he’s leaving Sami behind! Will the Champion of the People be able to do this by himself? We’ll find out, after the break!
Angelo Dawkins w/ Montez Ford VS Sami Zayn!
SmackDown returns and the match is underway as Dawkins clubs and bumps Sami off buckles and in corners. Sami grabs ropes, Dawkins has a leg but the ref calls for the break. Sami clubs Dawkins, headlocks, but Dawkins powers out to run him over! Dawkins keeps moving, Sami hurdles but Dawkins hurdles back. Dawkins ducks to dropkick Sami down! Cover, TWO! Dawkins grabs a leg but Sami still holds ropes. The ref counts, Dawkins lets go and Sami goes out. Dawkins pursues, Sami kicks and elbows Dawkins then bumps him off barriers, then bumps him off the apron. Sami puts Dawkins in, gets in and CLOBBERS Dawkins from behind! Cover, TWO!
Sami keeps his cool as he looms over Dawkins. Sami stomps Dawkins, drags him up and throws haymakers. Sami puts Dawkins on the ropes and chokes him! The ref counts, Sami taunts Ford, but Sami lets off at 4. “This is what you get!” Sami drags Dawkins up, whips him and CLOBBERS him again! Cover, TWO! Another cover, TWO! Another, TWO! Sami argues the count but the ref says it was the same as the other times. Sami drags Dawkins up, throws more haymakers, then whips Dawkins to ropes again. Dawkins CLOBBERS Sami this time! Ford fires up as Dawkins rallies and hits the LEAPING ELBOW!
Sami ends up in a corner, Dawkins hits the CYCLONE SPLASH! BIG BULLDOG! Cover, TWO! Ford coaches Dawkins and he drags Sami up. Dawkins has the hooks but Sami fights the exploder off. Sami swings but into Dawkins’ SILENCER! Cover, TWO! The butterfly corkscrew suplex didn’t work, and Sami gets to the apron. Dawkins pursues but Sami hotshots him! Sami reels Dawkins in, but he can’t get Dawkins up. Dawkins throws elbows, runs in but the cyclone gest buckles! Sami reels Dawkins in for a CORNER EXPLODER!
Dawkins staggers as Sami goes corner to corner, but Ford gets up close on Sami’s camera crew! Sami shouts at Ford to stop that, but Dawkins rolls him up! Dawkins wins!!
Winner: Angelo Dawkins, by pinfall
Did the cameras get that? Sami still cries conspiracy and shouts, “Who’s behind this?!” Sami doesn’t recognize the second guy and asks if he’s a WWE spy! The guy doesn’t know how to answer and Sami throws knees into him! Is the documentary going to start being about Sami’s spiral into madness?
Reginald Thompson, the Fabulous sommelier, finds Carmella backstage.
She says he likes playing games, right? Of course he does. This new game is called, “Who’s the Snake?” What? Mella says one of them took a chance on a lowly sommelier and made him a star, while the other betrayed that someone and is siding with Sasha Banks. Reggie says all of that has been for Mella! Well it’s game over. Reggie’s the snake! She slaps the tray out of his hand and FIRES him! What is Reggie going to do now that he’s without a boss?
Dominik Mysterio w/ Rey Mysterio VS Chad Gable w/ Otis!
To get payback on behalf of his father, Dominik is going to take on the Alpha Academy headmaster! But with the Dozer ringside, will Dom have to worry more about Rey than Gable?
SmackDown returns and the Alpha Academy make their entrance. The bell rings and Dom ties up with Gable. They go around, Gable waistlocks and throws Dom down. Dom gets up but Gable throws him back down, then floats to a facelock. Otis says Dom is alone and that’s why he’ll lose. But Dom runs around to throw Gable out! Gable gets back in but Dom arm-drags him! Dom cranks the arm, Gable gets up but Dom wrenches to a wristlock. Gable rolls, bridges, handsprings and spins to break free and headlock to then spin and spin and drop toehold! Gable has the leg, and SMASHES it into the mat! Dom gets up, Gable gets the leg again and hits a DRAGON SCREW!
Gable jams the knee, does it again, then covers, TWO! Gable keeps on Dom with a standing toehold and he pushes down hard on the leg. Dom endures, Rey coaches him through it and Dom kicks at Gable with the free leg. Fans rally, Gable gets the foot and Dom enziguris! Gable staggers to a corner,. Dom runs in but the monkey flip is turned around. Dom boots from up top, then leaps to huricanrana! Gable is in the other corner, Dom runs in to wheelbarrow throw him into buckles! Dom goes back up, leaps, but no tornado DDT! Gable gets Dom’s arms, TIGER SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!! Dom escapes and Gable can’t believe it!
Gable gets the legs, drags Dom to a drop zone and goes up top. Gable talks trash to Rey, and MOONSAULTS, but has to land on his feet as Dom moves! Gable waistlocks, Dom wheelbarrows to a victory roll but Gable sit son the cover, TWO! Dom reels Gable into a La Magistrol, DOM WINS!
Winner: Dominik Mysterio, by pinfall
Otis storms onto the apron but Rey WRECKS him with a dropkick! Otis hits announce desk, Rey LEAPS and SEATED SENTONS him onto the desk! The Mysterios regroup and retreat! The Alpha Academy is raging, but are they going to learn a lesson from the King and Prince of Lucha?
Backstage interview with Seth Rollins!
Kayla Braxton brings up Cesaro’s swing that seemed to last forever, and Rollins says it sure felt that way. And do you want to know why? Because it was forever! But the question is, why? Has Cesaro done that much to anyone else? No, that was rhetorical. But then why did he do it? Because he is afraid of “us.” Cesaro doesn’t want to #EmbraceTheVision because he knows “we” are strong! Cesaro wanted to embarrass Rollins and humiliate him! Rollins promises us that he won’t forget that. And Buddy Murphy is BACK?!
Murphy says he could help Rollins with this problem. Rollins doesn’t want to see Murphy. Murphy needs to leave, now. Is Murphy really trying to be Rollins’ disciple again? Will Rollins do just fine against Cesaro without him?
Bianca Belair w/ Sasha Banks VS Shayna Baszler w/ Nia Jax!
A partial rematch from the impromptu Elimination Chamber WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship match, the EST and the Queen of Spades match up again 1v1! But will Bianca earn herself and The Boss momentum towards those titles? Or will Shayna do damage to the Women’s Rumble winner before she reaches WrESTleMania?
SmackDown returns as Bianca makes her entrance, followed by Sasha’s. That seems like a surprise to Bianca’s, despite the coming Fastlane match. But another surprise, or perhaps not, is that Reggie follows Sasha out like a stray puppy. The bell rings, Bianca and Shayna tie up, and Shayna gets an arm to wrench it. Bianca scoops Shayna, Shayna slips off and headlocks. Bianca slips through to headlock back, but Shayna powers out. Bianca goes up and over in the corner, handsprings and eggs Shayna on to then run her over! Bianca is fired up and she claps at Shayna to then say kiss this. Things speed up,. Bianca handsprings but Shayna blocks the dropkick to get he foot!
Bianca boots her away, dodges the knee, rolls Shayna up, ONE! Bianca yanks Shayna’s arm, steps over and hooks it to La Magistrol, ONE! Shayna has an arm, wrenches, twists the wrist, but Bianca endures. Bianca powers through to fireman’s carry, but Shayna slips out again to whip. Bianca goes up again but gets caught for a KICK to the arm! Nia cheers Shayna on while Bianca writhes. Sasha checks on her partner and coaches her up, and Bianca gets up in a corner. Shayna runs in to KNEE Bianca down! Shayna drags Bianca to a cover, ONE!! Shayna grows annoyed, she drags Bianca and wrenches the arm to a grounded wristlock. Bianca resists but Shayna twists it all the same.
Shayna stands on Bianca’s head, pulls the arm around, and TWEAKS it! Sasha grows worried but she coaches Bianca up. Shayna runs back in. Bianca dodges! Shayna knees buckles. but hurries after Bianca! Shayna gets the arm, Bianca scoops with the good one to SLAM her down! Shayna gets up but Bianca ROCKS her! Bianca runs in to RAM Shayna into the corner! Bianca rams and rams and fires off with the good arm and even some stomps! Bianca drags Shayna up to a suplex! And a kip up! Bianca shakes out the bad arm, claps at Shayna, then whips her to back drop her! Nia is the one getting upset now as Bianca chicken wings for the Glam-
NO! Shayna victory rolls Bianca out of the ring! Reggie is there and he says no hard feelings, but Bianca shoves him down! Bianca gets in, Shayna KNEES her down! Both women are down and Reggie flounders up near Nia. Nia shoves Reggie at Sasha, and runs over! Reggie moves ,Sasha gets bulldozed! Bianca is distracted, Shayna gets the KIRAFUDA! But Bianca powers to the Torture Rack, KISS OF DEATH!! Cover, Bianca wins!!
Winner: Bianca Belair, by pinfall
The EST pulled it off and KOD sealed the deal! But Bianca tells Sasha to handle things with Reggie. Tag titles or not, Bianca and Sasha need to have a fair match at Mania. Reggie helps Sasha up, and she smiles, but then SLAPS Reggie! Sasha told Reggie to stay out of her business! When it rains, it pours. Will Reggie be pouring himself a drink to drown his sorrows?
Roman talks with Jey in their suite.
Roman wants Jey to understand that if Jey wins, the Universal Championship is safe until Mania. But if Jey loses, Roman will have to defend it at Fastlane. That part is fine, but Jey losing is an embarrassment to him and the family. Jey cannot embarrass the family. Jey says he’s got this, but will he prove that when caged up with a determined Daniel Bryan?
Buddy Murphy VS Cesaro!
The former disciple might be trying to show Rollins what he can do by taking the Swiss Cyborg head-on! Will Cesaro prove that if he can defeat Rollins’ former protégé, he really doesn’t need Rollins’ vision?
But of course Rollins makes his presence known! Rollins goes ringside to watch Cesaro in person, and the bell rings. Cesaro runs at Murphy, waistlocks and SLAMS him, then dead lift gut wrenches Murphy for a suplex! Rollins joins commentary, Cesaro covers Murphy, ONE! Murphy elbows Cesaro away, runs but Cesaro follows. Murphy leaps but into a tilt-o-whirl BACKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Cesaro is after Murphy’s legs but he gets to the apron. Murphy then yanks Cesaro out and stomps Cesaro’s hand away! Murphy WRECKS Cesaro with a dropkick, then builds speed to FLY! Direct hit and Murphy tumbles to the ramp. Murphy puts Cesaro in, climbs up top, and leaps for a METEORA! Cover, TWO!
Murphy grits his teeth and he digs his knee into Cesaro then KICKS him in the back! Cesaro shoves Murphy away but runs into a boot! Murphy hops up again, leaps, but into a EuroUpper! Murphy staggers back, Cesaro catches his breath, and Cesaro grits his teeth. Cesaro runs in to EuroUpper again! Cesaro whips, EuroUppers, and repeat! And repeat! Cesaro runs to BOOT Murphy down! Cesaro drags Murphy back up as Rollins vents about the swing, and Cesaro puts Murphy IN THE SWING! Cesaro swings Murphy around and around and around and around and Rollins complains and Cesaro keeps going! Cesaro stops after 20, and puts on the SHARPSHOOTER! Murphy taps, Cesaro wins!
Winner: Cesaro, by submission
Rollins applauds Cesaro despite all he was just saying. But Cesaro smiles back just as mockingly. Will Cesaro do more than just embarrass and humiliate Rollins when they get in the ring together?
Reggie sulks as he packs up his things and heads out.
But he spots Sasha’s private room and decides to knock on the door. Sasha answers, and Reggie tries to apologize, but she says NO! Well, guess that’s that. But then Reggie sees the tag champions and Shayna says, “Smell that?” Reggie reeks of failure! But where’s wine boy going? Thirsty for a fight? Nia says Shayna should chill. Doesn’t she see what Nia sees? Reggie’s kinda cute. Huh? Is the sommelier about to go from bully bosses to boss bullies?
Apollo Crews is here!
And he is further representing his Nigerian royal heritage by having bodyguards by his side, and a spear in his hand! Apollo has his guards lead the way into the ring first, then he follows. Apollo fetches a mic and he says everyone is telling him how they don’t like the new Apollo. But the good news is, this isn’t the “new” Apollo, this is the REAL Apollo! This is who he is, how he talks, and he is a descendant of Nigerian royalty! He is a REAL African American! This is his Nigerian Elite Guard, the protector of his family for many generations. Apollo remembers being a young boy hearing stories about these men, about his heritage.
At the time, he was too ashamed to accept his heritage because he would be made fun of. He wanted to fit in, and be just like “you.” But “you” never accepted him! Even his own “friends” just wanted to mock him. “Did you live in a jungle? Did you ride lions to school?” Apollo was ashamed, but the truth is, these stories about his ancestors, some of the most feared and respected men in all of Nigeria, who would dominate and conquer anyone. The more Apollo went into his roots, the more he realized things were repeating themselves. Big E was disrespecting him, and Apollo would hear his ancestors telling him to stand up and claim his birthright. So Apollo did what he had to do.
“Big E, I know you’re at home, nursing your injury. And I know you fear walking in the sight of me.” But Big E is coming back next week, and that makes Apollo happy! Apollo is no longer the man Big E once knew and dismissed. Apollo won’t fit in, he’ll proudly stand out! He will DEMAND a rematch for the Intercontinental Championship!! Big E will fall before Apollo’s feet, and Apollo will leave Big E a broken man for life! And Big E will be hunted for Apollo’s complete and total victory! The Nigerian Prince has issued his ultimatum, but will Big E be coming back only bigger and stronger?
Adam Pearce and Sonya Deville try to reason with Natalya and Tamina.
They’re clearly upset that Sasha & Bianca are getting a title match over them! Have Pearce & Sonya not seen how dominant Natty & Tamina have been? Of course they have! But that’s not the match that was made. Pearce apologizes and dismisses himself. Sonya says Pearce simply made a different decision. Will the Queen of Harts and the Daughter of Superfly force Pearce to reconsider?
Backstage interview with Jey Uso.
Does he perhaps feel any extra pressure- There’s no pressure! Jey thrives off of this! “DB shouldn’t have popped off on Big Uce!” Now they’re in the Uso Penitentiary! But then Bryan CLOBBERS Jey from behind! Bryan doesn’t say anything, but that was clearly a taste of Jey’s own medicine. Will Jey start to crack under the pressure of defending the family? Will Bryan force Roman to defend his title?
SmackDown has a special bonus DING DONG, HELLO~!
Bayley walks in through the door to say that tonight is a special rehearsal for a new segment. Other shows do “Mean Tweets,” but Bayley is loved by everyone so she has something she’s calling Sweet Tweets! RoleModel1452 says “Bayley can truly do it all! They’d never give a talk show to someone like Sasha banks!” Then EllenDegeneres1 says “Forget about Edge and Roman Reigns, the Ding Dong Hello Show should be the main event of WrestleMania!” And lastly, WWESuperfan says “Ding Dong Hello is…” Wait, wait, wait. How did this one get in here? Bayley doesn’t even finish it and throws the card away. She SLAMS the door, but will she have something to say to that supposed superfan?
Steel Cage Match: Daniel Bryan VS Jey Uso!
Last week’s count-out was neither win or loss, so a deal was struck on Talking Smack: Bryan and Jey have a rematch, and if Bryan wins, he gets his Fastlane title match; if Bryan loses, he must ACKNOWLEDGE Roman! But it was Bryan who raised the stakes even higher by wanting the steel cage to be the stipulation! Will the Goat’s gamble pay off and get him his golden ticket? Or will Jey leave Bryan in WrestleMania lockdown?
Jey steps inside the cage, but Roman and Heyman make their entrance! The Tribal Chief already put pressure on Jey, but he’s really digging in the screws now. Heyman makes sure to get Roman a chair so that he can have a seat at the ramp. Will Roman be here to personally congratulate his cousin? Or personally accept Bryan’s challenge? We’ll find that out, after the break!
SmackDown returns, the bell rings and Bryan rushes Jey with forearms! Jey hits back and it is a brawl! Bryan ROCKS Jey with a EuroUpper, then KICKS a leg to whip. Jey reverses and RAMS Bryan into the steel! Jey drags Bryan up, clubs him and RAMS Him into the steel again! And again! Jey tells Bryan to acknowledge Roman! He digs Bryan’s face into the steel and Roman is there to stare at Bryan. Bryan refuses to say anything so Jey clubs him down. Roman tells Jey to do more and Jey hauls Roman up to fireman’s carry and LAWN DART Bryan into steel! Jey calls for the door and walks over but Bryan catches him in the ropes!
Jey fires off on Bryan but he goes back in to ROCK Bryan with an uppercut! Jey climbs the side but Bryan pursues! Bryan gets a foot, drags Jey back down and then smashes him off the steel! Jey smashes Bryan again, then hops down to trip Bryan! Bryan is stuck on the top, Jey DECKS him off it! Jey drags Bryan up, RAMS him into the corner, then tells Roman he’s got this as he goes side to side. Bryan blocks to SMASH Jey off the steel, off the buckles, then YANKS him into the wall! Heyman watches Roman closely as Bryan climbs up. Bryan leaps to missile dropkick Jey down! Jey writhes and crawls, he sees the door! Jey heads that way but Bryan PENALTY KICKS an arm!
Bryan wrenches Jey to elbow breakers! And then RAMS Jey into more steel! And then brings Jey around for another elbow breaker, and another RAM into steel! Jey flops down but Bryan drags him up to wrench and whip,. Jey reverses, Bryan goes up and over and dodges to go up again! Bryan heads for the top but Jey hurries to bring him down! Bryan lands on his billy goat again, and Jey stomps away on the knees! Jey winces for a moment before he stomps more. Jey climbs, but Bryan sits up! Bryan anchors Jey, climbs up to join him, and then headbutts him! Bryan headbutts Jey to send him back to the top rope, but Jey fireman’s carries Bryan for a SUPER SAMOAN DROP!! Both men are down as SmackDown goes to another break!
SmackDown returns one more time, and both men are up on top of the cage! They’re brawling with haymakers and headbutts! Bryan rocks Jey, tries to slip to the outside, but Jey holds on with a facelock! Jey drags Bryan back inside and they’re on the top rope. Bryan smashes Jey off steel, and gives him YES KICKS up there! Jey wobbles but he manages to SUPERKICK Bryan down! Jey adjusts to USO SPLASH!! Cover, TWO!! Bryan survives and Jey is too sore to be frustrated! Jey crawls to the door and it opens for him. Bryan crawls after Jey and anchors a foot. Jey grabs at the frame, gets up, but Bryan spins him around, only to get the DRAGON WHIP KICK!
But Bryan ROUNDHOUSES Jey! Jey SUPERKICKS again! Cover, TWO!! Jey is beside himself, but Roman is like stone as usual. Jey sits up and wants the door to open again, but Bryan GHOST PINS! TWO, and he has Jey caught for endless elbows! And then, a turn to the omoplata, but Jey moves around to ground ‘n’ pound wildly! Jey wants to hurt Bryan more than anything! Jey lets off to catch his breath, and he looks to Roman. Jey grabs Bryan’s legs, and catapults him into steel! Bryan flops down, but Jey again looks to Roman. Jey says he’ll end this, and he goes up the side of the steel. But Bryan pursues again! Bryan catches up to Jey and anchors him as he climbs up again!
Bryan throws headbutts, Jey goes back to the ropes, and Bryan adjusts on top. Bryan is going to the outside, but Jey grabs his head with a cravat! Jey drags Bryan back in but Bryan headbutts Jey again! Bryan has Jey and RAMS him into the steel again and again! Bryan underhooks for a SUPER BUTTERFLY SUPLEX!! Roll through, to the YES LOCK!! Jey endures, flails, crawls, and gets the ropebreak, BUT IT DOESN’T MATTER! No ropebreaks or disqualifications in a cage match! Bryan pulls back even harder!! Jey taps, BRYAN WINS!!
Winner: Daniel Bryan, by submission (faces Roman Reigns for the title at Fastlane)
The Universal Championship is taking a detour! Bryan is taking a stand against the establishment again, can he repeat what he did for WrestleMania 30 and make it into YEStleMania?
A pretty great episode for SmackDown, but there is a lot I do not like for the build to Fastlane and other stories from this. Firstly, Buddy Murphy trying to reconnect with Rollins. Obviously, the stuff with Aaliyah Mysterio wasn’t working, wasn’t going to work, and was a bit dumb to do in the first place. But you can’t just reset Murphy to before all of that. Don’t have Murphy reach out to Rollins at all, just have him return by surprise here against Cesaro. That match was still okay, because Rollins was on commentary and Cesaro did the swing to get at Rollins and all of that. But I am annoyed that WWE (Vince) is throwing Murphy back in just because they don’t know what else to do with Murphy. Rollins VS Cesaro is just fine on its own, have someone else #EmbraceTheVision instead of Murphy relapsing back to being the disciple.
Then the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship developments are very odd. It’s fine that the champions are defending the belts at all, but announcing that it’s just going to be the Elimination Chamber match-up again is odd. I did appreciate that another team was upset by this, so there might be more story to it than what we got. Pearce sure seems really close to these titles given what we saw on NXT. If this all turns out to be a huge story between all three brands, then I’ll be all for it, but it is hard to see that from where we are. And while Reggie being fired by Mella and rejected by Sasha is following what I expected, I’m not sure how I feel about Nia suddenly taking interest in him. Whenever it is that Shayna and Nia split, I don’t think Nia needs a sidekick, so it’s just odd she’d care about Reggie at all.
The Profits having singles matches was a good way to both fill time but also have more story with Corbin and Sami. Corbin puts a stop to the tag team with Sami, the Profits get to go 1-1 on the night, keeping things a bit even for them as we head for Mania. The SmackDown Tag Team Championships story will certainly have something for Mania, so the slow burn isn’t so bad. Gable VS Dom was good, and it works that Dom gets a quick victory. Another tag match is coming, and though the Profits will protest, I bet Sonya sets up the winner of that against the Dirty Dawgs. That can be for Fastlane, then Profits getting their rematch can be for Mania to make it even bigger.
Apollo’s promo was very good, though I’m surprised he’s got bodyguards now. The spear is cool, though. Big E’s return is in time for Fastlane, so that could be the match for the Intercontinental Championship. And with how this Apollo is, it could go either way. Then the main story, once again the Universal Championship with Roman, is going great. Bryan’s promo to start the night is a bit recycled from Talking Smack but still just as strong and passionate, and then his thwarting Jey’s sneak attack to then come back with one of his own is great stuff. Bryan is taking the fight to the establishment again, and Fastlane is going to be great with Roman VS Bryan fair and square, both guys at 100%. I still feel like Roman wins in the end, because WWE can’t resist Spear VS Spear, but Bryan’s going to make it one hell of a match.
My Score: 8.3/10
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