NXT has grudges, gold and grrrrizzled competition tonight!
Candice & Indi want the NXT Women’s Tag Team Champions, Swerve and Ruff are going to fight all over the place, and the Grizzled Young Veterans take on “Old Man Ciampa” and “Toothless Timmy.” But perhaps biggest of all, PRINCE BALOR IS BACK! What will the former NXT Champion have in store for his future?
- Falls Count Anywhere: Isaiah “Swerve” Scott VS Leon Ruff; Swerve wins.
- Cameron Grimes VS Asher Hale; Grimes wins.
- Tommaso Ciampa & Timothy Thatcher VS Grizzled Young Veterans; Ciampa & Thatcher win.
- Sarray VS Zayda Ramier; Sarray wins.
- LA Knight VS Jake Atlas; Knight wins.
- NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships Street Fight: Shotzi Blackheart & Ember Moon VS Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell; LeRae & Hartwell win and become the new NXT Women’s Tag Team Champions.
PLAY BY PLAY
Falls Count Anywhere: Isaiah “Swerve” Scott VS Leon Ruff!
No more blindsides, no more games, no more boundaries! These two can go anywhere and do anything to finally finish this! Will Swerve’s House be in for a Ruff night? Or will Leon lose more than just a match?
Ruff wants after Swerve so bad but the ref keeps him back. Swerve takes his time with his jacket, and that only riles Ruff up more. The bell rings, Ruff rushes in but Swerve KNEES him down! Swerve shoves Ruff around, bumps him off buckles, fires off hands and CHOPS, but Ruff turns it around to fire off forearms of his own! Swerve shoves Ruff, Ruff comes back but Swerve dodges. Ruff fakes Swerve out, then goes up and around and under, but Swerve waistlocks, only for Ruff to slip out of the wheelbarrow! Ruff wants the crucifix but Swerve elbows him away and DECKS him with a right hand! Swerve smirks as he stalks Ruff and drags him up.
Swerve whips Ruff to a corner, but Ruff goes up and leaps! No cutter as Swerve catches Ruff and shoves him back to a corner. Swerve half nelsons but Ruff arm-drags Swerve out of the ring! Fans fire up as Ruff builds speed and DIVES, but into a fireman’s carry! APRON DEATH VALLEY! Swerve is the one gives Ruff a rough landing, and he just drags him right back up. Swerve RAMS Ruff into boards, then drags him up to whip and RAM him into other boards! Ruff is a rag doll as Swerve drags him up and scoops him for a SIDEWALK SLAM to the ramp! Cover, TWO! Ruff survives but Swerve digs his face into the steel! Ruff endures, Swerve lets off, and then puts Ruff in the ring.
Swerve stalks Ruff, stomps him down, but fans rally up for the underdog. Swerve mocks Ruff but Ruff hits back. Swerve KICKS Ruff in the ribs! Swerve gets Ruff up to the top rope, climbs up to SLAP him, then stands on the very top. Ruff fights back, Swerve gets Ruff up, for a SUPERPLEX! That was extra super, and Swerve covers deep, TWO!! Ruff survives and Swerve is actually amused! “You see that? He wants to keep playing with me!” Ruff falls out of the ring, Swerve is on the apron and soaks up the heat, and Swerve lines up a shot, but Ruff trips him up! Ruff has Swerve in a Tree of Woe in the ropes and fires off haymakers! Ruff lines up his shot, to SHOTGUN Swerve down!
Ruff gets space from Swerve, to then run back in and LEAP, but into a SWATTING haymaker! Ruff crashes down, fans fire up, and Swerve kicks Ruff around. Ruff pulls hair, Swerve shoves Ruff away! Swerve brings out a toolbox and CHUCKS it!! Ruff avoids getting decapitated and realizes how sinister Swerve is, as NXT goes picture in picture.
Swerve BOOTS Ruff down, brings the toolbox to the ring and opens it up. Swerve brings out a wrench, tosses it aside, then throws a hammer down on Ruff’s leg! Swerve drags Ruff up, RAMS him into the apron, and then positions the steel steps nearby. Swerve scoops Ruff but Ruff slips out and scrambles to the ramp! Swerve asks where Ruff is going as he stalks him to the far side of the stage. Ruff scurries into the shadows, Swerve says he’s ready to play hide ‘n’ seek, and goes looking. Ruff is on top of a locker, Swerve drags him off to BOMB him into the locker! Cocky cover, TWO!! Swerve stalks Ruff, moves some spare equipment around, and aims with a road case!
Swerve RAMS Ruff with it, like Ruff did to him a few weeks ago! Swerve laughs as he slaps Ruff around on the floor. Swerve drags Ruff up but Ruff still fights back! Ruff goes to bump Swerve off lockers but Swerve RAMS Ruff into the wall, then TOSSES him into the locker! Swerve stalks Ruff back to the stage, Ruff throws a chair but Swerve catches it to toss it aside. Swerve sits Ruff up in a mocking camel clutch, then soaks up the heat. NXT returns to single picture as Swerve gets Ruff’s leg. Ruff uses the stage light to blind Swerve! Ruff BOOTS Swerve into girders! And then FLIES off the stage to topple him over! Cover, TWO!!
Swerve staggers about, blinking to get his vision back. Swerve goes into the ring, Ruff hurries over, and Ruff slingshots, but Swerve shoves him down! Swerve ROCKS Ruff, climbs up the corner and drags Ruff to the top! DEAD LIFT, but Ruff fights the suplex off! Ruff shifts around, SUPER CRUCIFIX DRIVER! Cover, TWO!!! Swerve survives and fans are fired up! Swerve rolls to the apron, Ruff gets up and throws hands! Ruff drags Swerve up now but Swerve throws heavy body shots. Ruff hits back, goes to run but Swerve grabs his hand. Ruff slides under, goes for a bomb, but Swerve punches, only to get apron! Ruff uses the steps to go back up, for a SUPER POISON-RANA!!
Fans lose their minds and cheer on “NXT! NXT!” for this incredible opener! Ruff crawls over to Swerve, but Swerve rolls away to avoid a cover. Ruff continues to crawl and chase Swerve but Swerve staggers to the barriers. Swerve grins because Ruff will never be on his level. “Keep trying, you can’t! You’re nothing!” Ruff glares at Swerve, runs in, Swerve pops him up but Ruff balances on the barrier’s edge! Ruff headscissors, but Swerve turns that into the CONFIDENCE BOOST! Cover, TWO!?! Ruff survives and Swerve is furious! Swerve fish hooks Ruff’s face to drag him back to the steel steps! Fans are fired up for Ruff but Swerve is seething as he runs in. Ruff moves, Swerve gets steps!
Ruff hurries to get the toolbox, and uses it to SMASH Swerve’s leg! Ruff SMACKS Swerve’s legs more then puts him in the ring. Ruff goes up top, FROG SPLASH!! Cover, TWO!! Swerve survives but Ruff is after the leg with a HEEL HOOK!! Swerve flails, reaches, rolls around, but Ruff TWISTS the leg! Swerve CHOPS and Ruff lets go! But Ruff gets up and up and RUFF CUT!! Swerve bails out, Ruff pursues, SUPER RUFF CUT!! A LARIAT sends Swerve over the barriers! Ruff hops up and over, but has an idea! Ruff climbs up a ladder to the camera’s perch, for the ULTIMATE- Wait who is that?! “Boy, you must be out yo mind!” This guy gives Ruff a BARRIER USHIGOROSHI!
Wait, this is one of Swerve’s entourage from his recording studio! AJ Francis just helped Swerve screw Ruff! Swerve puts Ruff in the ring, drags him into position, J M L!! Cover, Swerve wins!!
Winner: Isaiah “Swerve” Scott, by pinfall
Not just AJ Francis, but now Ashante “Thee” Adonis and Briana Brandy are here to celebrate! Is this a new force to be reckoned with in NXT?
Finn Balor has arrived!
The Prince feels refreshed with his time away, but what will he do next now that he’s back?
Johnny Gargano and Austin Theory walk and talk backstage.
Johnny says William Regal has been ducking him all week and doesn’t want to meet with him. But in that case, they’ll just go to his office! And the door’s already open! But that’s because Scarlett Bordeaux is meeting with Regal. Johnny and Theory interrupt because the number one champion has some very important business to discuss. Then later! Okay, fine, when Regal has time! Austin, let’s go. “Those are huge! Are they real? I mean, yeah, they gotta be real.” Scarlett’s nails are amazing! Austin, stop! Don’t touch her! You can’t just touch people! Johnny drags Theory away and Scarlett contains her fury. Will Karrion Kross have something to say about Theory staring at her… nails?
Cameron Grimes VS Asher Hale!
The Carolina Caveman and King of GameStonks is ready to make even more money in the ring! But will Grimes be able to rebound from his recent downturn against Kyle O’Reilly?
The bell rings, Grimes and Hale circle, Grimes gets around to a waistlock and SLAMS Hale down! Hale gets up as Grimes flexes, and the two circle. Grimes gets a leg but Hale gets a headlock! Grimes powers up but Hale holds tight. Grimes powers up to get free, and then reels Hale into a headlock of his own. Hale powers out but Grimes runs him over! Things speed up, Hale drops and hurdles and ducks under to dropkick a leg out! Grimes gets up and Hale KICKS his leg! And KICKS! Hale wrenches, whips, but Grimes reverses to CLOBBER Hale! Grimes storms after Hale, throws EuroUppers and KICKS, then stomps Hale down in a corner!
Grimes lets off as the ref counts, but he comes back to KICK Hale! Hale KICKS, Grimes DECKS him with a EuroUpper! Grimes whips Hale, Hale kicks back and ENZIGURIS! Grimes staggers, Hale runs in but blocks the boots. Hale tries Grimes’ up in a Figure Four DRAGON SCREW! Hale gets a facelock but the tornado is tossed away! Grimes grits his teeth but runs into a boot! Hale goes up and leaps, for a missile dropkick! Cover, TWO! Hale is upset but he gets Grimes’ leg again. Grimes kicks him away, ducks the Penalty Kick to get a waistlock but Hale switches. Hale shoves Grimes to a corner and runs, but into a kitchen sink knee!
Grimes waits for Hale to stand, to scoop and SWINGING SIDE SLAM! Grimes snarls as Hale stands back up, “TO THE MOON!” CAVE IN!! Cover, Grimes wins!
Winner: Cameron Grimes, by pinfall
Grimes folds Hale and heads for the pay window! But will Grimes start investing some time in going after gold?
Backstage interview with Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter.
Last time we saw KC Squared, they were dealing with Tian Sha, and we’ve all seen that scary movie before: “When the ghost tells you to get out of the house, you get the hell out of the house.” Kayden doesn’t care if Xia Li is turned into a dragon and exile her, or banish Boa, poof! Kayden doesn’t want to see those stupid faces, hear that stupid name, not their concern. But Kacy says what is their concern is the NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships. They’ll be watching the Street Fight very closely. Doesn’t matter if it’s Ember & Shotzi, Candice & Indi, either way, KC Squared want next.
Franky Monet walks over and says these two are so cute! And just between them, they’re her favorites. They’re adorable with their fighting spirits and wanting the tag titles. But just so they know, it’ll take them a lot longer to get the titles than they think. But Franky and Preston the Pomeranian believe in them. Kayden wants to tear into Franky but Kacy has her stand down. Will KC Squared make Monet put her money where her mouth is?
Ever-Rise cheers Grimes on backstage.
Matt Marthel & Chase Parker are fired up for Grimes’ huge win! Grimes says he likes their Saturday social media show and all, but he really only has room for three in his car: “Me, myself, and CAMERON GRIMES!” Excuse him while he goes to~ the~… VIP room! Wait, how is that three? “For a money guy, he’s not very good at math.”
Tommaso Ciampa & Timothy Thatcher VS Grizzled Young Veterans!
The Psycho Killer and Professor of Pain are certainly grizzled veterans of the ring, and they want to show Zack Gibson & James Drake that there’s more to being a locker room leader than saying you are one.
NXT returns and GYV are already in the ring, and with mics in hand. James Drake tells Ciampa & Thatcher, “Who on Earth told you that it was a good idea to encourage these swamp creatures to take their shoes off?” GYV are a gift to NXT! Gibson says that the fans need to trust him when he says, “Nobody needs to see your dirty web toes! So stick your crocs back on, sit down and zip it!” Or else, these two will be on the next plane OUT of this dump of a country! You should celebrate the Grizzled Young Veterans, SSSOON– “NO ONE WILL SURVIVE!” Ciampa & Thatcher make their entrance, and it is time to see which duo of veterans is the most grizzled!
The teams sort out, Ciampa starts with Drake and fans are on Ciampa’s side. They tie up, go around, and Drake puts Ciampa in a corner. The ref counts, Drake lets off and Ciampa headlocks back! Drake powers out, Ciampa runs him over! Cover, ONE! Ciampa clamps onto Drake’s head, grinds him down with a chinlock, then shifts to a headscissor. Drake endures, Ciampa CLUBS him in the chest, but Drake slips out. Ciampa wrenches and CHOPS Drake, covers again, ONE! Ciampa drag Drake up and over, tags in Thatcher, and they mug Drake. Thatcher wrenches and grinds Drake’s arm, chinbars, but Drake endures. Thatcher hooks a leg but Drake shakes free to roll and get away!
Gibson tags in, Liverpool’s Number One circles with Thatcher and they tie up. They’re in a deadlock, Gibson gets a waistlock but Thatcher wrenches the arm! Thatcher wants the double wristlock but Gibson powers out, only for Thatcher to run him over! Cover, ONE! Thatcher facelocks, hooks an arm and drags Gibson down, but Gibson works to keep his shoulders up. Thatcher puts the pressure on Gibson’s arm, stands up to twist the wrist, but Gibson endures. Thatcher KNEES Gibson in the back, then KNEES him again! Gibson trips Thatcher and has a toehold, then throws forearms. Gibson twists the ankle, Thatcher endures and fights up to get a sleeper! Gibson fades!
Drake runs in to BOOT Thatcher, but Thatcher holds on! Ciampa BOOTS Drake and puts him in a chinlock! Both men CLUB away on the GYV! The ref counts, Ciampa & Thatcher let up but the fans are fired up as NXT goes to break!
NXT returns and Thatcher throws EuroUppers on Drake in a corner. Thatcher whips Drake corner to corner, but Drake goes up and out and tags Gibson. The ref says that’s not how tags work! Gibson argues with the ref, Thatcher drags Drake in! Drake pulls an ear then whips Thatcher into ropes! The ref checks on Thatcher, reprimands GYV, but Drake get Thatcher up to fire off forearms! Tag to Gibson, GYV coordinate for a missile dropkick COMPLETE SHOT! Cover, TWO! Gibson tries another cover, ONE! Another try, ONE! Gibson keeps Thatcher down with a facelock and hammering elbows! Fans rally as Gibson clamps on a chinlock and grinds Thatcher.
Gibson shifts to a cravat, but fans rally for “Toothless Timmy!” Thatcher fights up but Gibson gives short headbutts. Gibson brings Thatcher over but Thatcher throws him away! The two get up and collide head to head! Gibson grabs a leg to keep Thatcher down, and tags in Drake! Drake drags Thatcher but Thatcher boots him away! Hot tag to Ciampa! Ciampa rallies on Drake, then on Gibson, then clotheslines Drake in a corner! Then a clothesline for Gibson in the corner! Ciampa runs, dodges and DOUBLE LARIATS! Fans are fired up as Ciampa gets fired up and whips Drake to the corner! Ciampa CHOPS and CHOPS and CHOPS!
Thatcher tags in, and he fires forearm after forearm on Drake! Ciampa tags back in and the two pinball Drake with EuroUppers, knees and a DOUBLE CHOP! PSYCHO KNEE! Cover, TWO! Drake survives but he might regret that soon! Ciampa stands on Drake’s hand, wrenches and BITES the other, then tags in Thatcher. Thatcher DECKS Drake, gets a leg, but Drake kicks until he kicks Thatcher away! Drake crawls but Thatcher reels him into a waistlock! Drake elbows free, hot tag to Gibson! But Thatcher clinches Gibson for a Belly2Belly! Cover, Drake breaks it! Ciampa and Drake fire off forearms back and forth, Gibson and Thatcher give EuroUppers!
Ciampa ROCKS Drake, elbows him then clotheslines Drake and himself out of the ring! The EuroUppers still fly from Gibson and Thatcher, Gibson CHOPS and EuroUppers over an dover! Thatcher grabs Gibson by the beard to SLAP him down! Thatcher underhooks Gibson for a BUTTERFLY SUPLEX! Cover, TWO! But Thatcher wants the double wristlock! Gibson desperately resists, Ciampa keeps Drake out but Drake BOOTS Ciampa into the desk! Thatcher ROCKS GYV with EuroUppers, but they clinch him for a throat chop! Drake DIVES and sends Ciampa over the announce desk! Gibson gets Thatcher up, HELTER SKELTER! Cover, TWO!!
Fans fire up and Gibson can’t believe Thatcher is still in this! “This is Awesome!” as Ciampa trips Drake! Thatcher rolls Gibson up, TWO! The EuroUppers fly, the ref is busy keeping Ciampa out! Thatcher has one of Wade Barrett’s shoes?! Thatcher CLOBBERS Gibson with it!! Thatcher gets the arm for the FUJIWARA!! Gibson taps, Ciampa & Thatcher win!!
Winners: Tommaso Ciampa & Timothy Thatcher, by submission
Bad news for the Grizzled Young Veterans, because Barrett’s very fancy loafer led to their defeat! If you hate Gibson, shoes off! But will Ciampa & Thatcher make sure to add belts to the ensemble?
Johnny and Theory head back to Regal’s office.
Johnny has the camera follow them because we’ll all want to see this. Theory is gonna bust the door down! Do it, Theory! Theory winds up, and knocks. But Regal is outside his office and walks over. Gargano complains that the North American title match with Bronson Reed shouldn’t even happen. It is only because of Dexter Lumis that Theory lost. Therefore, no title match! Not fair, just, we good?” Regal thinks and no, Gargano will still defend the title against Reed. And by the way, Theory, “your new best friend Scarlett” got you a match with KARRION KROSS for next week! Uh oh. Is time about to run out on The Way? Gargano says he’ll think of something.
NXT Media catches up with Swerve and crew.
What did we just see out there against Ruff? Swerve says he told us he was going to beat Ruff tonight, and that’s what he did. With that, Swerve, Adonis, Briana and #TopDolla AJF head out. What will these four have in store for NXT next?
Karrion Kross & Scarlett Bordeaux head to the ring!
The NXT Champion and his harbinger of doom already have Austin Theory running scared for next week, but they’re here for something more important. Kross is handed the mic to say, “Three weeks ago, I came out here and I made things crystal clear. All you had to do was step right up and roll the dice. And instead, I was met with people saying they weren’t afraid of me. Well guess what? I ain’t afraid of you, either! Now that we’ve established that, this occasion begs the question: what are we waiting for?! Let’s give these people what they want! Let’s give them a fight!”
Kross says that’s how this works! He is champion, he doesn’t need to go back there and prove anyone wrong. They have to get in the ring and prove themselves right! But he won’t just wait for someone to stab him in the back. Next week, Austin Theory will be driven on his head! Kross will leave Theory face-down and unconscious, so that everyone else- But wait! Kyle O’Reilly is stepping up! #CoolKyle struts down to the ring, Scarlett holds onto the belt and Kyle tips his hat to her before getting a mic. “I get it, Kross. I get it. I get why everyone… Well, why you think everyone should be afraid: sheer dominance.”
Kyle is sensing hostility, though, so he’ll make this clear. Kyle puts his hat and sunglasses aside because he’s here to tell Kross to his face, that he isn’t afraid of Kross, and with all due respect, Kross IS the NXT Champion, so this is the match Kyle wants! “Something tells me this is the match you want, too. So let’s give the NXT Universe-” Pete Dunne interrupts! The Bruiserweight has a mic, of course, and he says, “Are you two having a laugh? I don’t care who wants to see this match, and I don’t care about the NEW Kyle O’Reilly. And trust me, mate, I don’t care that you stand there as NXT Champion.”
The truth is, Dunne is the baddest man in NXT today, and if either of these two “cover boys” tries to prove him wrong, he- Finn Balor interrupts! Balor tells them, “Pete Dunne? Been there, done that. Kyle O’Reilly? Been there, done that. Twice! Kross? Once you’re done with Theory,” and then Balor just punches Kross! Kross DECKS Balor in return, Dunne steps back but Kyle steps up. But then Dunne knocks Kross into Kyle! The Bruiserweight throws hands, but Kross throws the Bruiserweight! Balor is back up and back after Kross! Kross knees Balor but Kyle KICKS Kross! Kross BOOTS Kyle, knees him in a corner, but Balor SHOTGUNS Kross into Kyle!
Balor gets Kross with body shots, Kross powers Balor all the way to the other corner! Security rushes in but they all get CLOBBERED! Kross CLOBBERS Balor! Balor tries to get back in but Kross DECKS him again! Another security guard gets in Kross’ way, only to get a DOOMSDAY SAIDO! Kross grins as he stands tall with the title, but he clearly has contenders closing in on all sides. And that includes Theory and Gargano jumping him from behind! Kross throws Theory away, choke grips Gargano and shoves him down! Theory forearms Kross but runs into an EXPLODER! Gargano SUPERKICKS Kross, but Kross stays on his feet! Theory SUPERKICKS and Kross kneels!
The Way gives Kross DOUBLE SUPERKICKS! Kross staggers, Gargano uses his own title to CLOBBER Kross! Scarlett is furious as Gargano says if you mess with Theory, you mess with Johnny Freakin’ Wrestling! Are things about to get way wilder in NXT than ever before?
NXT Media catches up with Gargano and Theory as they’re leaving!
Why did they attack Karrion Kross? Why are they getting out of here when Candice & Indi still have their Street Fight for the NXT Women’s Tag titles? Gargano says this is Candice’s & Indi’s night, they don’t need him and Theory. These two are going to prepare the celebration for them. Okay, night! Gargano and Theory drive off, but will there be anything to celebrate after tonight?
Sarray VS Zayda Ramier!
The Warrior of the Sun came in with a lot of fanfare, and rightfully so. But it was the other new superstar in the NXT Women’s Division that shocked the world by defeating Toni Storm in her debut! Will Sarray have to be careful her rise isn’t overshadowed tonight?
The bell rings, Zayda and Sarray shake hands to show there is respect, and then they tie up. Zayda headlocks, hits a takeover, but Sarray headscissors. Zayda kips free, sweeps the legs and covers, ONE! Sarray sweeps the legs to cover, ONE! Sarray kicks Zayda then headlocks. Zayda powers her way out to get a headlock, but Sarray throws body shots. Sarray shoves Zayda to ropes then dropkicks her right down! Fans fire up but Zayda is dazed. Sarray waits as Zayda gets to a corner. Zayda is alright, so Sarray rushes in, only for Zayda to put her in the corner for EuroUppers! Zayda brings Sarray out but Sarray kicks low and runs. Zayda hurdles, drops and trips Sarray to an STF!
Sarray endures as Zayda grinds the crossface! Sarray crawls, fans rally, and Sarray gets a ropebreak! Zayda lets off fast but walks into kicks from Sarray! Sarray rolls Zayda, TWO! Zayda runs into a lift and SPINEBUSTER! Sarray gets a leg now, ties it up with the other, and rallies fans as she puts on the MUTA LOCK! Zayda endures as Sarray bridges to bend her back, and now Zayda gets a ropebreak! Sarray lets off fast and fans rally up. Sarray runs and basement dropkicks Zayda against ropes! Zayda is rocked, Sarray gets her up, PERFECT PLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!! Sarray isn’t deterred, she just goes up top! BIG missile dropkick!
Sarray fires up and watches Zayda get up. Zayda forearms but Sarray gives it back! Zayda fires off more, whips Sarray to ropes, but Sarray dropkicks her down again! Sarray stomps Zayda to ropes, runs side to side again, but Zayda avoids the dropkick! Zayda gets a cover, TWO!! Sarray survives but Zayda gets her back up to RAM into a corner! Zayda runs corner to corner to EuroUpper! Then she runs again, SLINGBLADE! Cover, TWO! Zayda is seething but fans are fired up! Zayda gets Sarray up. Sarray SOBATS then GERMAN SUPLEXES! Sarray isn’t done there, she gets Zayda back up for a URENAGE SUPLEX! Cover, Sarray wins!
Winner: Sarray, by pinfall
A valiant effort from Zayda but the Warrior of the Sun shines through! Will we be seeing more of these two in the new age of NXT?
Imperium speaks with Walter via video chat.
The Ring General tells his soldiers, in German, that he is disappointed in them. He didn’t think there’d be such incompetence without him around. Marcel Barthel, Fabian Aichner and Alexander Wolfe understand, but Wolfe is the one who leaves. Is there a crack forming in the foundation of this dominant faction?
The Diamond Mine is coming.
They dominate because pressure is pleasure, and pressure makes diamonds. Who will be crushed by that pressure when the Diamond Mine debuts?
Sarray checks on Zayda backstage.
Sarray and Zayda thank each other for the great match tonight, and there is still great respect between them. Toni Storm starts storming over, but Zoey Stark is there to intercept! The Lightning From Down Under won’t get after the Warrior of the Sun with Stark watching Sarray’s back. Stark then congratulates Sarray on her win and Zayda on her great showing. Will Stark make herself into the lightning rod that keeps Storm from striking anyone else?
LA Knight VS Jake Atlas!
For NXT being his game now, Knight hasn’t been winning as much as he’d like. But as he makes his entrance, “Lemme talk to ya! The Ruler’s back, and what that means is a bunch of incels out here are gonna be saying my name in a minute. But just because you say ‘L! A! Knight!’ doesn’t make you cool.'” Speaking of not cool, Knight’s going to redefine Jake Atlas’ name. He’ll punt Jake’s ass so far down the street, he’s gonna need an atlas to find it, YEAH! That’s not an insult, that’s just a fact of life! But will Knight be the one looking like a dummy?
The bell rings and Atlas dodges Knight to arm-drag him to an armlock! Atlas dares Knight to talk trash now, but Knight fights up and pulls hair. Knight whips, Atlas dodges again and gets another arm-drag! Atlas has another armlock, but Knight fight sup to pull hair again. Atlas wrenches the arm but Knight ROCKS Atlas with a forearm. Knight bumps Atlas off buckles, stomps him down, then drags Atlas up. Knight whips Atlas to ropes, Atlas hurdles and stops to BOOT Knight! And then dropkick! Knight bails out but Atlas fires up! Atlas builds speed to DIVE into an uppercut! Knight gets on the apron to BOOT Atlas back in the ring, and slingshot SHOULDER TACKLE in!
Knight throws body shots and more stomps on Atlas, then snapmares him. Knight drops a knee but misses as Atlas moves! Atlas ROCKS Knight with haymaker after haymaker but then dodges Knight’s to KNEE and ROLLING ELBOW! And GERMAN SUPLEX! Cover, TWO! Knight survives and Atlas is furious! Atlas storms over but Knight sends him into buckles! Knight stomps Atlas more, throws JABS, then hoists Atlas up top. Knight ROCKS Atlas again, talks some trash, and climbs up top. Atlas knocks Knight away, but Knight runs back! Knight leaps, Atlas gets under, and Knight hops down, into a mule kick! Atlas KICKS and swings, but Knight ducks the heel to STUNNER! Cover, Knight wins!
Winner: LA Knight, by pinfall
Knight’s take on the stunner, the BFT, was a BFD, big friggin’ deal! Will Knight finally start to be the next big thing he promised to be?
Candice & Indi talk backstage.
Candice tells Indi that it’s fine Johnny and Austin headed home already. This is THEIR night! Tag title Street Fight! They’ll get the titles! Indi checks her bag, but Candice spots a drawing left on a chair. That artwork’s by Dexter Lumis! It’s of him carrying Indi away a couple weeks ago! Candice hides it from Indi, and brings up how those flowers Dexter sent to Shotzi & Ember should’ve been Indi’s. Indi looks at Candice, which causes her to miss Dexter standing at the door with roses! Roses that are for Indi! Candice pretends she doesn’t hear anything, and asks if she’s thinking about “that boy” again. Candice spots Dexter, and hurries to close the blinds!
Indi says Candice is right, she has to focus. Tonight’s the night. Visualize and feel it. The Way says they’re going to get back at Shotzi & Ember, but will Candice run out of ways to fool Indi and thwart Dexter?
Toni Storm speaks.
“Zoey Stark, you’re really pissing me off. You’re what’s known as, ‘the flavor of the month.’ And may I say, you’re losing your taste pretty damn quick.” Stark doesn’t deserve to be in the same ring as Toni, in the same locker room, or even breathing the same damn oxygen as Toni! Toni is a global superstar, former and future women’s champion, and Stark… is a future NOBODY! But soon everyone is going to forget about Zoey Stark. Storm brought Stark into the business, and whenever she’s ready, “so help me God,” she’ll take Stark out of it! Is #ToniTime just a moment away from taking over?
El Legado del Fantasma is in the ring.
Santos Escobar starts by saying, “The measure of a man. You’ve heard me talk about blood, tradition, heritage, legacy. You’ve seen me become the NXT Cruiserweight Campeon! And the undisputed Emperor of Lucha Libre.” Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde voice their agreement, and Escobar continues by saying that last week, we all witnessed a moment. An ICONIC moment. A vision, or even a premonition. Escobar will recover what is rightfully his in the NXT Cruiserweight Championship. Then Wilde tells MSK that they haven’t forgotten. When MSK won at TakeOver, they didn’t beat Legado! But last week, Legado DID beat MSK! Real bad, too! They EMBARRASSED MSK!
Mendoza says that’s right! Wilde says we all know what needs to happen next. Mendoza says Legado is about sangre, tradicion, orgullo, sacrificio, legado and oro. That means they want MSK VS Legado for the NXT Tag Team Championships! Escobar says, “The measure of a man is not what he can do for himself, but what he does for his brothers.” But then Kushida interrupts on the titantron! Last week, Escobar crossed a line and that was mistake! Kushida warns him in Japanese and then in English that next week, they will face off for the Cruiserweight Championship! Escobar says he’s on!! The title will be back on the line, but can Escobar take it back to grow his legend?
Raquel Gonzalez and Mercedes Martinez sit down for an interview via video.
Beth Phoenix thanks them both for this time, and starts with the NXT Women’s Champion. Beth says Raquel dared the challengers to line up so she could knock them all down. How does she plan on doing that to Mercedes next week? “Simple: Pure power.” This title means Raquel is the baddest in the division, and she went through a long list just to get here. She respects Mercedes’ years of respect, but Mercedes says she should. But Raquel says to respect the champ, and don’t cut her off! Mercedes laughs and says everyone wants to talk about her experience, how long she’s been in the business, but she gets it. She’s hungry! And next week, she has something to prove!
Raquel intimidates everyone else but not Mercedes! Raquel says, “Not yet.” Mercedes dares Raquel to look her in the eyes. “You do NOT see any fear.” Raquel says what she sees is a woman who is about to get her ass kicked. Mercedes says what she really sees is a woman who never stays down! Mercedes says Raquel is champ because of someone like Mercedes. The roads Mercedes traveled were paved for Raquel! The roads Mercedes drove up and down were for Raquel! Raquel hasn’t been through the ugliness and grittiness Mercedes had to go through! To Mercedes, Raquel isn’t gritty, she’s a cookie cutter! Mercedes wasn’t! Raquel may not see it, but she was molded after a blueprint MERCEDES made!
Blueprint? Cookie cutter? Mercedes, you did set the bar. But she set it way down here. Raquel picked it up with one arm and placed it so high, no one else can ever reach it. In one year of experience, Raquel has surpassed every single one of Mercedes’ accomplishments throughout her entire career! Well in one night, Mercedes will end Raquel’s reign. No, Chiquita, you’re just the first challenger, and you won’t be the last! With the words out of the way, who will be the one to have the last say in their intense title match?
Shotzi & Ember talk backstage.
After The Way humiliated them last week, they have this coming! Indi hit Shotzi with a glass vase! And Candice smashed cupcakes in Ember’s face! Actually, Shotzi would’ve preferred that one. Wait, what is Preston doing in Shotzi’s tank? C’mere, cute little guy. Run along, little doggy. Preston heads off, Ember says he left something NOT cute in the tank. Aw c’mon…! How is it so big when Preston’s so small!? Well, they’ll wash that out later. Can Shotzi & Ember at least #TCB, Take Care o’ Business, against Candice & Indi?
Cameron Grimes hits the club!
He is feelin’ good tonight, and says sup to the bouncer. Grimes offers a fist bump but is left hanging. That’s fine, Grimes likes that he’s taking his job seriously. He’s Grimes and he’s going TO~ THE~ VIP Room. C’mon, man, he’s been here before, let him in. Sorry, sir, there’s no one on the list tonight. You sure? This is Cameron Grimes. Yes, but the entire venue has been rented out for the evening. The bouncer’s really tall so maybe he didn’t hear. Grimes jumps as he says his name again. Just a moment, Mr. Grimes. His limo has just arrived. Huh? Who? Grimes is right here, he didn’t order a limo! It’s Ted DeBiase!?!
“Learn a lesson, kid: Don’t just rent a booth, when you can buy the whole place!” And one more thing: Everybody’s got a price for the Million Dollar Man! DeBiase laughs his way into the club but Grimes says that’s not funny! DAMN YOU, DEBIASE!! Will Grimes continue to be thwarted by the original big money roller?
BREAKING NEWS for next week!
Kushida and Escobar aren’t just having a normal NXT Cruiserweight Championship match! It’ll be BEST 2 OUTTA 3 FALLS! Can Escobar regain the throne with the challenge made twice as hard? And after the strange hesitation from the Hatchet Man, Alexander Wolfe looks to cut ties with his past as he faces Killian Dain 1v1! Will the Belfast Beast be the one to break through to Wolfe instead?
NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships Street Fight: Shotzi Blackheart & Ember Moon VS Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell!
The wild child and the evolved Shenom may not have won the Women’s Dusty Cup, but they did get these titles off the original champions their first try! Will there be no way Shotzi & Ember let the Poison Pixie and Impressive Indi take the titles away on their third try?
The introductions are made, the belts are raised, and there’s no holding back in this main event!
Actually, skip all that, the hands start flying the second they’re all in the ring together! Indi and Shotzi brawl in the ring while Ember and Candice tumble out of it! Shotzi shoves Indi out so now everyone is outside! Shotzi fetches a TABLE! Indi CLUBS Shotzi down first, then RAMS her into the boards! Ember runs over but Indi CLUBS her down! Indi sets up the table herself, and Candice CLUBS Ember. Candice brings Ember away to throw into barriers, then fetches chairs from under the ring! And lots of them! Ember mule kicks Candice down! Shotzi CLUBS Indi, but Indi blocks the apron bump to elbow her away. Ember CLOBBERS Candice and brings out trash cans!
Ember tosses cans into the ring, throws one down on Candice’s leg, then stalks her around the way. Shotzi bumps Indi off the table, puts her on the apron, but Shotzi goes after Candice. Shotzi and Ember RAM Candice into barriers, then hurry after Indi. Indi fights back but that’s 2v1. Shotzi CHOPS Indi, Ember CHOPS Indi, and then they stalk her to a corner. Ember and Shotzi double whip, drop toehold to basement dropkick, then a elbow drop! Ember has a can, Shotzi sits Indi up, and the can is put around Indi. Shotzi and Ember run, DOUBLE BASEMENT DROPKICK SANDWICH! The can is crunched and Indi falls over! Cover, Candice breaks it!
Shotzi goes after Candice, Ember whips but Candice whips Ember out. Shotzi runs in but Candice dodges to kick a leg out! SUPERKICK! The champs regroup outside, Candice builds speed and slides, but into DOUBLE TRASH CAN LIDS! The champs just swatted the pixie and now go looking for more items. Ember kicks Candice down while Shotzi brings out another TABLE! Ember helps Shotzi get the table into the ring, but Indi attacks back! Indi throws Ember HARD into boards, then kicks Shotzi! Indi fireman’s carries to APRON SNAKE EYES Shotzi! Indi gets Ember to throw her onto barriers and BOOT her down!
Indi gets some chairs and sets them up at ringside. Indi has a chair square, Shotzi storms over but Indi kicks her. Indi drags Shotzi around but Ember grabs Indi for a FULL METAL BULLDOG! Ember bumps Indi off the apron, and Shotzi adds a chair for a pyramid! Shotzi wants to relive Evolve Wrestling’s 10th Anniversary show! They sit Indi on the top chair, go to the ring, and Ember holds ropes open. Shotzi builds speed, but Candice BLASTS the champs with a fire extinguisher! The Fire Pit might’ve just been put out as NXT goes picture in picture!
Candice helps Indi down and puts the chairs on their sides. Candice and Indi go looking under the ring again and bring out a LADDER! It’s a big one and hard to get out all the way. Candice goes looking for the other end, and Indi props the ladder against the barrier. The Way has a ladder bridge between ring and barriers. Ember and Shotzi hurry out but Candice DECKS Ember! Shotzi kicks Indi, Candice CLUBS Ember. Candice puts Ember in the ring, Shotzi and Indi brawl around the way. Indi RAMS Shotzi into more boards! Candice sets up the table in the ring, but just enough to lean it in a corner. Indi joins Candice in the ring and goes after Ember.
Ember hits back, Candice has a chair and JAMS Ember in the back! Candice steps on Ember, then again, then JAMS Shotzi off the apron! Candice wedges the chair into a corner, but Ember CLUBS her as NXT returns to single picture! Ember shoves Candice to dropkick her down! Candice flounders, Indi returns, but Ember dodges and Shotzi ENZIGURIS! The Way are on the ropes, Ember goes out and shouts, “EAT IT!” as Shotzi runs in, BALLPIT ENZIGURI COMBO! Fans fire up as Shotzi and Ember get Candice up to POST her! Candice flops out of the ring, Ember and Shotzi have Indi, feed to the DRAPING HEADSCISSORS! CHAIRSHOT!
Ember SMACKS Indi down for good measure as Candice slowly returns. Shotzi and Ember get Candice up, DOMINATOR CUTTER COMBO! Cover, but Indi breaks it in time! Shotzi gets Indi up, she and Ember mug Indi. Candice is on the apron, Ember SUPERKICKS her down! DOUBLE ROLLING ELBOW for Indi! The champs fire each other up, and they go for Candice as she is prone on the ladder bridge! Shotzi goes up, for the STAGE DIVE SENTON THROUGH THE LADDER!! Both women are wrecked on the outside, and Ember is in shock! Ember gets Indi up, Alabama lift, ALABAMA SLAM THROUGH THE TABLE!! Cover, TWO!?! Indi still lives and THAT is impressive!
Ember drags Indi up, throws her around, and Shotzi rises to get a new ladder! It’s a bit smaller, and Indi BOOTS it into the champs! Indi drags the ladder up and puts it against ropes. Candice is somehow up, Indi DECKS Shotzi onto the new ladder. Indi lifts ladder, Candice goes to ropes, DRAPING FULL METAL LIONSAULT!! Cover, Ember breaks it!! All four women are down but fans are thunderous! Indi and Candice regroup but Ember DECKS Candice and BOOTS Indi! Indi comes back to SPINEBUSTER Ember on the ladder!! Cover, Shotzi breaks it in time!! Shotzi gets Indi up and out but Indi trips Shotzi to drag her out. Indi throws Shotzi into boards again!
Indi starts clearing off the announce desk! Indi drags Shotzi up but Shotzi SMASHES Barrett’s mug off her! Barrett’s gonna need a new mug and a new shoe! Shotzi shoves Indi onto the table, climbs up the girder, and finds a spot to perch on. SUPER SPLASH THROUGH THE DESK!! “This is Awesome!” and far from over! Candice jackknifes Ember! TWO, and Candice runs into a SIT-OUT POWERBOMB! Cover, TWO!! Ember is furious, but it’s all on her! Ember gets to a corner, climbs up top, but Candice ROCKS her first! Candice gets up to join Ember, but Shotzi returns! Shotzi Electric Chair lifts but Candice slips off to shove Shotzi into Ember!
Ember falls to the floor, Candice goes out to CLUB Ember onto the table! Candice hurries back in the ring, Indi has somehow returned, but Shotzi SUPERKICKS Candice! Indi aims at Ember for a SUPER MACHO ELBOW THROUGH THE TABLE!! Indi shows reckless abandon tonight! Candice ROCKS Shotzi with brass knuckles!! Candice puts Shotzi on a chair, WICKED STEP SISTER!! Cover, THE WAY WINS!!
Winners: Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell, by pinfall (NEW NXT Women’s Tag Team Champions)
History was made in the most hardcore way, and finally, Candice has gold! She hugs Indi, because it was all thanks to her impressive heart and determination! Will the third-ever champions take these titles all the way to the top?
An awesome episode here, with great bookending with the opener and main event. Swerve VS Ruff was pretty good as a Falls Count Anywhere, for the limited space they could use in the Capitol Wrestling Center, aka Performance Center, but the best part was that Swerve is now a leader of a faction! I always felt Adonis and Swerve should be a duo, but adding the debuting #TopDolla AJ Francis and bringing back Briana Brandy from her various appearances here and there is a great move. The team’s name is not yet made official but it could be something Swerve has said over the last few weeks in this feud with Ruff.
Grimes gets another win in the ring, but another loss in kayfabe life, and I am really liking that we’re getting to see Ted DeBiase more than just once. This has to lead to a proxy fighting for DeBiase against Grimes, possibly for the Million Dollar Championship, or even a new vanity belt being introduced. I like that Gargano is being tied into things with Kross. Kross got impatient, acted like his contenders were scared but then they all show up at once. The promos were all okay, but the brawling was awesome! We must be getting a Fatal 4 Way #1 Contender’s match after Gargano defends his title against Reed. Win or lose, Gargano can be in the contender’s match just for the sake of star power.
Balor recently lost the title, so it’s either Kyle or Dunne getting the win. Cole claims to not be done with Kyle so maybe Dunne challenges Kross first to be a strong first defense. Kross can win to build this new reign, and then Kyle can circle back after apparently having to thwart Cole despite their Unsanctioned match being so badass. I also like the detail of Gargano & Theory running away so they couldn’t be attacked back by Kross. It also established that Candice & Indi would have to win the Street Fight on their own. Also, Grimes’ opponent tonight, Asher Hale, was definitely the same guy who took Kross’ saido.
GYV VS Thatcher & Ciampa was a great match, and I’m a little surprised Ciampa & Thatcher won. Granted, Ciampa was a great tag team guy once upon a time, so I suppose he and a new partner could outdo former tag champions. Still not sure where their story is going but Ciampa & Thatcher do make a badass team. Imperium had a short segment but it was to the point: Walter wants results! Wolfe VS Dain next week is going to be a lot of fun, just on story, and it will be a moment of truth in the overall Imperium expansion angle they’re working on. Legado del Fantasma has a good set of promos, and the matches we knew they’d want are being set up. Kushida VS Escobar, 2 outta 3, is going to be incredible!
Sarray VS Zayda was a great match, naturally Sarray won, and I like that while Storm wants after Sarray, Stark won’t let her just move on yet. Stark VS Storm Round 2 is going to be great, and then we can definitely get a great feud of Storm and Sarray. The video interview promo for Raquel and Mercedes was good, a bit better than most of these, but almost too real with them trying to talk over each other. That match is going to be awesome, but Raquel surely retains since this is her first defense. Though, we thought that was going to be the case with the tag titles and yet… But with Dakota ringside, surely something happens to help Raquel retain.
Is it just me, or is Franky Monet getting her hands into too many things? She shows up around the tag scene, around the top title scene, she needs to pick a lane. I don’t see her getting a tag partner so soon, but she also has to get in the ring before challenging for a title anyway. The Street Fight was insane, so many great spots and spot teases, and Indi really did impress. With the very funny promo backstage with Candice literally hiding Lumis from Indi, I thought he was going to show up, but I guess he chose not to upset Indi by interfering. The Way was in a must-win situation tonight so it’s great to see it happened, and maybe now that they have more belts, things really take off for them.
My Score: 9.3/10
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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