#JustKeepFighting, Talking Smack!
After a brutal Last Man Standing on Friday night, somehow, some way, Kevin Owens is here for Talking Smack! What will he say about going to MITB?
Kayla Braxton welcomes us, and Pat McAfee, back to the show!
Just over two weeks away from Money in the Bank and Fridays are just getting wilder! Kayla is again honored to have Pat here and Pat is happy to be on The Talking of the Smack. This is also a holiday weekend so Pat is pumped to start it off right. It is the greatest show on The Peacock. Pat being on here brings it down in his own opinion but he loves being here. And speaking of MITB, this makes it the second-to-last week in the ThunderDome! WWE is heading on the road soon, and that itself is a first for Pat. Pat doesn’t think the ThunderDome has gotten enough credit. He came in at the middle, but it is spectacular. Hate to see it go but it’s going to be great to have fans again.
Kayla wants to talk MITB. Last week, the big return of Edge brings a big rematch with Roman Reigns. We saw Edge go after Roman last week, and we saw Edge go after Jimmy Uso last night. Where was Roman last night? Pat and Michael Cole were talking about that, and then Pat was talking with Kayla about this before this. Yeah, where was Roman? Roman could’ve saved the day but Edge “edge-ucated” Jimmy. Not just beat him up, SPEARED him down! That’s the move that made him a Hall of Famer! But then using a piece of a chair to make Jimmy suffer and tap out! Pat points out how Edge had a picture of Roman’s face from WrestleMania, Jimmy looked a lot like him.
For a supposed family man, Roman sure didn’t step up for his family here. Kayla has had a problem with Roman’s treatment of the Usos the entire time. Pat is very confident that the man who usually sits here, Paul Heyman, would have a wonderfully worded way of saying this, but Roman has looked out for the family. Tonight was one thing, but Roman is the top dog, the Tribal Chief, the Head of the Table, the face of SmackDown, and SmackDown’s the number one show in sports entertainment. Roman’s at the top, now his cousins are in the same stage. Okay, tonight, Jimmy ate metal. But overall, Roman has done a lot. Kayla wonders if the next cohost will be less biased.
Anyway, moving on, bad things happen in threes, and they sure did for Baron Corbin. His music, his match, and his car. Kayla has never seen Corbin like this, and has never pitied him until now. Pat says the fall from penthouse to outhouse is real, but didn’t think it’d be this quick. Look at Corbin! The scruff, the car being taken, and apparently a loss in investments. How much do those “G Wagons” go for? Oh about $200,000 or so. Especially the one Corbin had. Then the loss was just insult to injury. Next week, Corbin has a MITB qualifying match with Shinsuke Nakamura, the man who took his crown, but he might’ve already hit rock bottom. But there’s only up from here.
Is the glass half full or half empty? Pat appreciates Kayla trying to be optimistic with saying it’s half full, but when you get a smaller cup, that thing gets filled. But Corbin is in trouble: no G Wagon, no crown, no… nothing! He’s got nothing! Maybe he can crawl out of the hole. But you can’t be like that for long in WWE or you’ll get run out of here. Moving on to Otis, he has a new look and he looks mean! Kayla is still surprised that Otis is no longer that big teddy bear. Otis crushed Angelo Dawkins after destroying him last week, and he took out Montez Ford, too.
Heavy Machinery, steaks ‘n’ weights, laughing and having a good time, that was all fine. But Chad Gable has made Otis into an absolutely barbaric savage! He isn’t just the Street Profits’ problem, he’s gonna be everyone’s problem. HUGE head, too. Otis cut the pony tail, shaved the beard, his head looks HUGE. A jug! A round mound o’ muscle, angry, flying around! The Alpha Academy is a problem. Well speaking of big, a big return from one Zelina Vega last night, and she’ll be one of the guests tonight, alongside Bayley and Kevin Owens!
Bayley joins Talking Smack!
The Role Model, the first-ever Women’s Grand Slam winner, Ding Dong Hello Bayley! Thank you for that introduction, but Bayley is a little annoyed at Kayla. Before the break, listing off the guests, Kayla was kinda like, “And also Bayley.” Kayla thought she put her over pretty well. Well, next time, let Pat take it. Pat says he’s just lucky to be here. But hey! Bayley has another championship match coming up. And not just a normal match, either. It will be an I QUIT Match! It was interesting to hear Bayley say that if she is forced to say “I quit,” she might just quit competing completely. As in, just wrestling or any competitive anything? Like, even cornholing.
Bayley says it is that ridiculous to think Bianca Belair can make Bayley say those words. Bianca got lucky once with the cheating, then again with the ladder and all that. But there is no possible way Bayley will sit there and say those words. Bianca is an idiot for choosing this match, and Bayley is such a genius for getting inside the head of a champion, someone who should have a different mindset and be on a different level than everyone else. Bianca doesn’t get that Bayley is 10 THOUSAND steps ahead! Since like 1902! But Kayla is pretty sure the end of that moment was Bianca getting in Bayley’s head.
Yes, Pat does note that Bianca said that. Bayley has accomplished just about everything, winning and winning and winning, but Bianca is legitimately taking over. Is Bayley envying Bianca? That’s what people are saying. Pat is not biased. But what would Bayley have to do to make Bianca quit? Because it doesn’t seem like Bianca’s ever going to stop. She’s the EST. Yes, she is at the top of her game and is the champion, but it isn’t Bayley’s fault that Bianca became champ. The only time Bayley would’ve said “I Quit” was the night Bianca won, because the idea of her having the title sickens her.
Bayley was just thrown off last night because she didn’t think Bianca would do this. After having their Hell in a Cell match in the Cell, Bayley didn’t realize Bianca knew what an I Quit match was. But if this is what Bianca wants, then Bianca will eat her words while Bayley takes the title. Pat asks what happens if you merely mutter the words. Is Michael in his ear? No! Bayley gave Pat a quick shoutout and this is how he treats her? Well it’s his job to say names so… But there is a lot on the line. The title, the prestige, and it’ll get ugly! “I Quit” are powerful words put together. Bayley says this isn’t a match she ever thought she’d have, or ask anyone to have, because she wants a fair fight.
Bayley would say she’s beaten Bianca twice, which no one else has. Bianca cheated once to win, used weapons in the next one. Kayla says it isn’t really cheating. No, it’s not, but she still needed something to help her win. You go in a Cell, Kayla! Bayley’s been asking for a match since 1901! Long time! Try Michael Cole first. But Bayley says an I Quit is intimidating. So imagine how Bianca feels going into this! It intimidates Bayley, but Bayley’s been ready for everything thrown at her in her career since day ONE! Bayley is ready, Bianca is done! It doesn’t matter what title Bianca holds, it’s coming home to Bayley, and it’ll be for the live friends! Bayley’s dad lives in Dallas, Bayley can win in front of him and then give him a hug!
Kayla thanks Bayley for her time, and Bayley thanks Pat. High-five as Bayley heads out, and Kayla has to mentally prepare for Zelina Vega next.
Zelina Vega joins Talking Smack!
La Muneca is back on SmackDown to Kayla’s “utter joy.” Vega says Kayla knows she wanted Vega back. Kayla can’t believe no one let her know Vega was back and then no one let her know Vega was going to be on this show. Oh, nO oNe ToLd KaYlA~! Yeah, right. Do you see Vega’s hair? This is excellence. Pat says hi and likes her comeback, being put right into the MITB match. He isn’t sure what this tension is with her and Kayla but alright. Vega says it is irrelevant, it’s all fine. MITB here, though. Concentrate on Vega. Kayla will be professional. Vega made a shocking return, she hadn’t been in a match yet this year but she got to be the second SmackDown entry in the Women’s MITB.
Vega says thank you, she is just that good. She doesn’t need to, she just is. Liv Morgan slapped Vega pretty hard though, right? And then Liv won, right? What was Vega’s thoughts? Pow! Slow-mo! Liv tried to smack the jaw off Vega’s face. Vega says she tried to do the same later, and Kayla can get that, too, if she doesn’t watch it. Second, Liv caught Vega off-guard. Vega’s from Queens, it’s fine. Vega will take that slap, but when you need to have handfuls of tights to win, does that make you credible? Pat isn’t sure what Kayla will say but it’ll surely be snarky. But didn’t Vega try to do it, too? Vega got caught, Liv didn’t, what’s that about? Yeah, right?
Vega says the ref is biased. Pat gets it. Yeah the footage shows it. Liv is a new Liv since a little while ago, what comes around goes around. Did that impress Vega? No, it didn’t. Unfortunately, Vega’s known Liv for some time now. But Vega’s been doing this a lot longer, so just because Liv gets some new tricks, all the things the kids want to do, that’s fine. But MITB has Vega in the match, not Liv. So talk about those who matter. The graphic comes up and Kayla points out the others: Nikki “Almost Super Hero” Cross, Naomi, Asuka, Alexa Bliss, and Carmella. Anyone here a threat to Vega? Vega isn’t saying she has bad vision, but she doesn’t see competition in that field.
Wow, real recognizes real and these all look unfamiliar. Well if Vega does win- Uh, when she wins. Well, when it comes to titles, does Vega have her eyes on any particular one? Hmm… Vega has unfinished business with Bianca. If Bianca is still champ. Vega isn’t fond of Bayley, either, but whoever has the blue belt is her first target. Well she did mention Raw and NXT, too. Yeah, she’s good with getting them all. Vega is better than everyone and that’s why she’s back, “Kaylynn” or whatever. And why she looks better in red, too. Kayla wishes Vega luck but Vega says she doesn’t need it. Pat says not to wish her luck, Kaylynn!
Kevin Owens joins Talking Smack!
After defeating long time nemesis, Sami Zayn, KO is in MITB! Pat shakes Kevin’s hand and isn’t even sure how Kevin is still moving! That Last Man Standing was unbelievable! Kevin says he and Sami do that a lot to each other, but Kevin wonders why Pat is here. Kayla says, “They switch cohosts up on me on this show like…” Well where’s Heyman? Well after seeing what Edge did to Roma and Jimmy the last couple of weeks, it makes sense. Pat is pretty sure it’s something about being the Special Counsel and the family issues. Pat just gets to be here to sit next to greatness so it is an honor to be here. That was good, right? Almost Heyman like. Yeah, almost as full of s*** as him.
Whoa now, can’t say that on Peacock! Kevin says he has something to say to Heyman so he’ll call him. Wow, alright. But Heyman is probably in the middle of something. Kevin doesn’t care. Well, Jimmy did eat a chair so… Kevin says it is unfortunate Jimmy went that way. Kevin had high hopes Jimmy wouldn’t follow in Jey’s dumbass footsteps and be another one of Roman’s bitches, but… Kayla agrees there, at least. Pat can’t believe the words right now. Is Kevin going to FaceTime Heyman? No, no. Kevin doesn’t want to see Heyman, he’ll just call. Kevin will hide his number or else Heyman will just shut him down.
Oh yeah, *67 that stuff. Kayley did that all the time, she loved doing prank phone calls in middle school. Pat says he knows nothing about that as he was an honorable young man. Kevin puts it on speaker for us, and everyone hushes. Heyman answers and Kevin says hi, and don’t hang up. Just listen. That’s hard, Kevin knows, but this will only take a minute. Kevin reminds Heyman about an episode of Talking Smack a month or so ago, when Kevin came on and told Heyman that he was going after the MITB contract. Last night, Kevin qualified for the match. Kevin wants Heyman to know, he’s excited to say this but Heyman isn’t here.
Kevin promises to win the MITB contract. Make sure Roman knows that when Kevin does, Kevin is coming for him, and there is not a DAMN THING Roman can do about it. Heyman claims Kevin has the wrong number then hangs up. Pat can’t help but laugh, but he says he’s laughing with Kevin, not at him. Kevin says that’s alright. He’ll get the contract, beat Roman’s ass then be the one laughing in the end. Kevin heads out and Pat asks Kayla if Kevin was mad at him. No, he wasn’t. Well Kevin had a great performance last night, is going hard into MITB, Pat is pumped for it! Kayla wishes us a Happy Fourth of July and hopes to see us for both MITB and next week’s episode!
Another good Talking Smack, and with Pat McAfee as cohost. Pat had a good segment talking about Corbin and Otis, and he has good points about both. Corbin might keep getting dumped on, and Otis might keep demolishing people. Bayley had a good segment, but she sure seems out there with her metaphors, like “since 1902” when no one here was even alive. But I do like there was a bit of retrospection with taking on her first I Quit match, but also kinda saying this is on Sasha Banks for losing at WrestleMania without saying Sasha’s name. Being an I Quit Match, Bianca VS Bayley could go either way, and could definitely be the match for a same-night cash-in.
Vega had a good segment, too, and it’s actually smart they don’t make as big of a deal about Vega being back because all of those issues that were behind her release aren’t important in kayfabe. But I do appreciate they acknowledged Vega bringing up targeting NXT just as much as Raw or SmackDown, and that she said that at all last night. One of these days, NXT needs to be included in the MITB matches. Things would get really interesting then, and really help all brands (mostly Raw) if for an entire year, we could see an NXT star use a cash-in as their call-up, or a RawDown star use a cash-in to move and refresh themselves in NXT.
Kevin’s segment was great for being so short. I like that he was hoping Heyman would be there, and then him calling Heyman to keep up the continuity that he wants to use the cash-in to finally get even with Roman. Even Heyman was strong between last night and Talking Smack, even though he barely said anything compared to his usual pompous and profuse pontificating. But as I said in the SmackDown article, this could be setting Kevin on a longer path. We all think he’ll win but then he doesn’t, and perhaps has to fight his way up, maybe even win the Royal Rumble in 2022.
News From Cook’s Corner 11.22.21: Happy Eggsgiving
A few shows, some big news, and some more releases. This week had everything! For better or worse… – and Cook gives you the lowdown!
Hi, hello & welcome to News From Cook’s Corner! This is the week where we think about all of the things we’re thankful for. So I might actually do a Fave Five this week, considering the annual Thanksgiving column was the inspiration for the gimmick anyway! Gonna be a pretty busy week though, so we’ll see how that goes.
Before you gorge yourself on turkey, here’s the latest going on in the rasslin world…
More WWE Releases!
There’s a pretty good chance that this will become a regular section of the ol’ column. Eighty wrestlers have been released by WWE during 2021, with one (Samoa Joe. Remember him?) being rehired. Let’s put this in perspective for a minute, as looking at the numbers can explain a lot of what’s going on here.
Raw currently has forty-three wrestlers. SmackDown has thirty-six. NXT has forty-one male wrestlers & twenty-one female wrestlers. NXT UK has forty-three wrestlers. Wikipedia lists four wrestlers under 205 Live, six wrestlers as free agents, then twenty-two wrestlers as Performance Center trainees. If I had to guess, Wikipedia doesn’t have a complete list of Performance Center trainees, so we really have no idea how many people are still hiding there. I seem to recall Nick Khan talking about signing a bunch of people when he was doing that media tour around SummerSlam.
The point I’m trying to make is that WWE has a ton of people under contract and really doesn’t have that many spots. Most of those people listed under Raw & SmackDown haven’t done much of anything in quite some time. The NXT & NXT UK rosters are freaking immense, and NXT is where a lot of the recent cuts have come from. There are going to be more people coming in, therefore there will be more cuts. It’s just best to accept this now instead of getting all sad & depressed every time it happens over the next few months or however long we have before Nick Khan engineers a sale. Don’t spin this as me being happy about people getting canned, I’m just saying “it is what it is”.
So who was it this time?
A few of them were connected to the previous releases. John Morrison would be the longest tenured wrestler of this batch, considering his wife (known as Franky Monet on NXT & Taya Valkyrie elsewhere) was part of the last crop of releases this wasn’t as big of a surprise as one may think. Kind of a dick move from WWE since they’d just moved from California to Florida to facilitate her training at the Performance Center. Other people will have to learn from these events. Johnny has been more entertaining during his stints outside of WWE than he has been in WWE, so I think he’ll do just fine.
It's beautiful that in kayfabe, Jinder & Shanky released a diss track so hard and so fire that it caused Hit Row to never show their faces again in embarrassment.
— Toru Yano Fan Account (@ToruYanoFanAcct) November 22, 2021
Remember when B-Fab was released and everybody thought it was kind of random to get rid of one of Hit Row’s members right after they debuted on SmackDown? Now they’re all gone. Isaiah “Swerve” Scott had been a featured act in NXT and was a top star in the indies before signing with WWE. Ashante thee Adnois was fairly new but had potential, and then there’s Top Dolla. This seems to come down to Top Dolla rubbing people the wrong way, including burying colleagues on social media & complaining to management about B-Fab’s dismissal.
It’s easy to understand why Top Dolla might have gotten a big head & thought his opinions mattered. He was featured on the Most Wanted Treasures show before ever appearing on NXT, so he was obviously a favorite of Paul Levesque’s. He also became the featured member of Hit Row upon their arrival on SmackDown, as his 6’5 330 pound frame played better with main roster decision makers than Swerve Scott’s lack of size. Dude moves pretty well for his size too, so there’s some potential there. Apparently he didn’t show enough potential to make up for whatever headaches he was causing, and the other two guys didn’t have enough appeal without him.
It’s tough, because I like it when people cause trouble backstage & stand up for themselves. Gives me more to write about here. However, I can’t recommend such things in today’s WWE. They’re looking for excuses to fire anybody. Oh, and I also wouldn’t recommend talking smack about the competition’s executive vice presidents like Top Dolla did either. Maybe it’ll impress Tony Khan, who knows.
Tegan Nox’s NXT tenure had more ups & downs than anybody else’s, I’d figure. Whenever she was about to get a push, she tore her knee up. They kept her around though, and finally moved her up to the main roster in July. She was placed in a team with Shotzi and they beat the Women’s Tag Team Champions multiple times, but never got a title shot. Then they got split in the draft, and Nox never even made an appearance on Raw. I don’t have any clue what happened other than somebody wasn’t impressed with Nox for some reason. Seemed like a solid talent to me, but I’m just a dork with a column.
Drake Maverick was released back in April 2020, but was kept around to work the NXT Cruiserweight Championship Tournament and ended up getting his job back due to popular appeal. Of course, he didn’t do a damn thing of note before getting released again, but I think we expected that. Got an extra year & a half of paychecks though, so there’s that. Seems like a nice bloke, he’ll land on his feet.
Shane Thorne disappeared from television once Retribution split up. He did a couple of dark matches recently with a Outback Jack-style Aussie gimmick, but nothing came of it. One would expect him to re-form the TMDK tag team with Mikey Nicholls at the earliest possible opportunity.
Jaxson Ryker was the final name of the list, and was another one that hadn’t done anything notable in awhile. He did outlast his fellow Forgotten Sons in the company, but did not outlast his tag team partner after that group split, Elias. Ryker got some heat back in 2020 when he tweeted political views that his boss agreed with, but it turns out that was the most attention he ever got while working for WWE. How bout that.
We’ll be back with more releases soon enough, I’m guessing. Again, we’re not celebrating these things, but we’re not going to act shocked either. As people have told me, it’s the wrestling “business”.
Did anything interesting happen at Survivor Series?
— WWE (@WWE) November 22, 2021
Becky Lynch beat Charlotte Flair by holding the ropes on a roll-up. In fairness, Charlotte tried to do it first. Also in fairness, it was the same referee that Charlotte took issue with and beat up back in April, so she probably should have seen it coming. Who says WWE doesn’t do long-term storytelling? Prior to the show, Fightful reported the match order, which had this as the main event and everything else in the reverse of which it happened. It’s a good thing Fightful got some egg on their face, as this sure wouldn’t have worked as the finish of the event.
Seth Rollins was the sole survivor in the Men’s Survivor Series Elimination Match, because he needed the win. Of note here was Austin Theory having a pretty long run in the match, Kevin Owens walking out on his team like he was Bad News Brown, and Drew McIntyre & Bobby Lashley doing a double countout spot because they didn’t need to lose.
Omos won the Rock 25th Anniversary battle royal, eliminating twelve people in the process. My takeaway from the match was they were trying to make Omos a star. Then I realized the the match was for Pizza Hut pizza, like how kids read books in school so they can win the Book It contest and get a class pizza party, I guess. I’m confused. How does The Rock feel about Pizza Hut? Never mind, one of the few things worse than political conversation is pizza conversation. If we go down this road we have to talk about pineapples and various cities’ styles of pizza, and I just don’t care about all that.
RK-Bro beat the Usos, and I think I’m the only person that doesn’t go completely crazy whenever Randy Orton does an RKO. We know he’s going to do it in a weird spot. It’s been a thing for like a decade now. Maybe I’m just jealous of these people that are able to react like they saw something for the first time evry time. In any event, Randy Orton has now wrestled more WWE PPV matches than anybody in the history of the universe.
Bianca Belair was the sole survivor of the Women’s Survivor Series Elimination Match. I thought the crowd was a little harsh, but it was a pretty sloppy piece of business & the booking was hella questionable. At least Bianca got to win.
Roman Reigns beat Big E to become the Universal Ultra Mega Champion of the Galaxy. Dude needs a few more nicknames so I’m trying to help him out. Big E got to do a big things, but we all knew what was going down here. Seems to hurt the drama factor to me. I may be wrong though, saw a bunch of people online calling it the best thing they ever saw. So what do I know?
The Rock didn’t show up. Apparently I was supposed to expect him to? People sure seemed mad about it.
The big tease for Monday night? Oh, this is one for the books. Vince McMahon got a Cleopatra Egg from The Rock, apparently part of his Netflix movie. Allegedly worth $100 million. Somebody stole it. All the WWE Superstars get to go to Raw tomorrow night so Adam Pearce can question them about it. If this doesn’t equal a record rating, I don’t know what will.
To answer my question of whether or not anything interesting happened at Survivor Series…I’d lean towards no, but it wasn’t an awful show or anything.
Kenny off of TripleMania Regia?
Kenny Omega might have lost his AEW & Impact Championships fairly recently, but he still has the AAA Megachampionship to his name. Omega was scheduled to defend that title against El Hijo del Vikingo at the upcoming TripleMania Regia event in Monterrey, but Dave Meltzer reports that the champion will be pulling out of the event due to upcoming surgeries.
Yep, surgeries. Kenny has a torn labrum, an abdominal hernia, a bad knee, and a septum issue as well. He’s been working through the pain for awhile now, and is expected to be out at least through February. Seriously though, if anybody deserves some time off it’s Kenny Omega. Dude has put the work in, whether you like him or not. It’ll also give him some added time to focus on the AEW video games division.
New Japan & NOAH Working Together
NJPW v NOAH at Wrestle Kingdom January 8 pic.twitter.com/X8eqsnMDcd
— Super J-Cast (@thesuperjcast) November 20, 2021
Last week in this column, I wondered why New Japan was holding three different Wrestle Kingdom events, including one in Yokohama on January 8 that didn’t have a fun IWGP Heavyweight Championship match announced for it yet. Turns out that the January 8 show will be a cross-promotional effort also involving Pro Wrestling NOAH. New Japan is reportedly planning on running a number of cross-promotional events in 2021 as part of celebrating the company’s 50th anniversary. DDT, All Japan & Dragon Gate have apparently talked with NJPW about participating.
These reports indicate to me that NJPW isn’t exactly bullish on the idea of borders being opened up anytime soon. It’s good news for Japanese wrestling fans though, and will help New Japan fill some cards. It’ll be fun to see Keiji Mutoh back in a New Japan ring, won’t it?
Well, that’s all we have time for this week. Thanks for reading, and until next time, keep your stick on the ice.
(NOAH) NOAH WEEKLY NEWSLETTER VOL.150 ~ 21ST NOVEMBER 2021
With their own big Budokan event coming up, and the huge crossover news, Hisame tells us all about the events in Pro Wrestling NOAH!
With their own big Budokan event coming up, and the huge crossover news, Hisame tells us all about the events in Pro Wrestling NOAH!
New Japan vs NOAH
On November 18th NOAH and New Japan both announced that they would be making a press conference on both of their respective YouTube channels on Saturday 20th November. Kaito Kiyomiya fueled further speculation by posting a picture of himself holding a picture of Kazuchika Okada, which had appeared on the front of Weekly Pro in June 2020, and captioning it “The Future”. At the press conference on the 20th, New Japan announced that as part of their 50th anniversary celebrations, they would be holding a joint Wrestle Kingdom show on January 8th 2022 at the Yokohama Arena. No mention was made of either side about the disaster of the “Suzuki Gun” era when Bushiroad owned NOAH, which indicates that both companies want to wipe the slate clean for the sake of the future. NOAH are not the company they were in 2015 and New Japan too have undergone a lot of changes.
The press conference was attended by Kaito Kiyomiya (ironically the only person in the room who was part of the fight against the Suzuki Army) and Hiroshi Tanahashi. A VTR was shown of three New Japan wrestlers (Hiroshi Tanahashi, Kazuchika Okada and current champion, Takagi Shingo) and three NOAH wrestlers (Kaito Kiyomiya, Keiji Mutoh and current champion, Katsuhiko Nakajima). Shingo said he had two names in mind, Naomichi Marufuji and Katsuhiko Nakajima, Nakajima whom he debuted the same year as and had lost to twice in the past, so “it’s time for some revenge”. Nakajima said he had no idea who their champion was, and Okada said he had no idea who was even in NOAH, and that if Kiyomiya really had wanted “to experience the Rainmaker”, he should have been more persistent. After Kiyomiya and Tanahashi had their say to the press with Kiyomiya vowing to make New Japan regret competing against NOAH, and Tanahashi saying he wanted to fight the one who represented NOAH the most, the two squared up before leaving the stage. Kiyomiya says that his original goal was Okada, but now he has a new focus, Tanahashi. No card has been announced as of yet, but KENTA has posted a picture of himself as GHC Heavyweight champion saying “See you there”
“The biggest announcement in history ever made”
For the New Year’s day event at The Nippon Budokan, NOAH have said they have five to make, with number four being what they are calling “the biggest in history”. This will be announced at this Tuesday. Kenoh says that the fifth announcement will be him walking out of The Budokan as a double champion.
Perros Del Mal De Japon vs STINGER; No Touch Tag Rules
In a recent interview, Yoshinari Ogawa verified that he never actually intended to challenge for the GHC Junior Heavyweight tag belts with Yasutaka Yano. He had told Yano to return the belts to NOSAWA Rongai and Eita as a way of humiliating them, but Yano had gotten a little carried away. Ogawa says that Yano needs more experience in the ring before he can start challenging for titles. He did feel sorry for him though being attacked and drenched in water. Ogawa stated that if he was going to challenge for the tag titles, then it was going to be with HAYATA and HAYATA only, but he also had a proposal for Eita. Why wasn’t the tag done under the DragonGate No Touch rules? What this basically means is that a tag partner does not have to tag in, he can get legally in the ring once his opponent is at ringside. Perhaps both NOSAWA and Eita should have thought more about accepting, as Ogawa rarely comes up with anything like this that will seemingly benefit his opponents and not himself, without having some kind of plan in mind. Title match will take place on the 28th November, with a handicap match between Ogawa and Yano vs NOSAWA taking place on the 23rd.
ELSEWHERE IN NOAH
– Kaito Kiyomiya endured a bit of teasing online due to appearing at the New Japan vs NOAH press conference in an oversized green jacket. Takashi Sugiura almost echoed Giant Baba when he wondered about the fashions of young people these days.
– Keiji Mutoh says he has an ambition to be GHC National Champion for his 60th birthday.
– Kenoh is convinced that by “this time next week” he will be heading to The Nippon Budokan as both the GHC National and the GHC Heavyweight Champion
– Hirooki Goto said he wanted to fight Takashi Sugiura at Wrestle Kingdom. Sugiura said he wanted anyone but Goto.
– Naomichi Marufuji was at an appearance/talk recently, and said that red used to be his color but he had to change it due to Kongoh, which meant that fans were still using the red penlight color for him. He was kind of irritated that he’d had to change!
– Yoshiki Inamura has resumed prowling Tokyo and photographing dogs and cats.
– Hitoshi Kumano hinted that he will be returning to the ring.
– Money raised from NOAH THE Home has bought some new equipment to the dojo. However, Yoshiki Inamura still seems to be used as weight by Daisuke Harada.
- GHC Heavyweight Champion: Katsuhiko Nakajima
Challenger: Kenoh – LEC Cleanup! presents NOAH the BEST 2021, Yoyogi National Stadium Second Gymnasium, Sunday, November 28th
- GHC Junior Champion: HAYATA
Challenger: Tadasuke – THE WARROAD 2021 in NAGOYA, Aichi / Nagoya Congress Center Event Hall, Sunday, December 5th 2021
- GHC Heavyweight Tag Champions: The M’s alliance (Naomichi Marufuji and Keiji Mutoh)
- GHC Junior Tag Champions: Perros De Mal Del Japon (NOSAWA Rongai & Eita)
Challengers: STINGER (HAYATA & Yoshinari Ogawa) – LEC Cleanup! presents NOAH the BEST 2021, Yoyogi National Stadium Second Gymnasium, Sunday, November 28th
- GHC National Champion: Kenoh
Challenger: Katsuhiko Nakajima – LEC Cleanup! presents NOAH the BEST 2021, Yoyogi National Stadium Second Gymnasium, Sunday, November 28th
THIS WEEK IN NOAH
Monday, November 22nd: Hitoshi Kumano (30)
Monday, November 22nd: Bison Smith memorial (2011)
PREMIUM PRELUDE 2021
Tuesday, November 23rd
Niigata / Bandaijima Multipurpose Plaza Large Kama
Start time: 17:30 JST
LEC Cleanup! presents NOAH the BEST 2021
Sunday, November 28th
Yoyogi National Stadium Second Gymnasium
Start time: 3pm JST
Broadcast: ABEMA, WrestleUniverse
With thanks to: Nodapooh
GIFS taken from NOAH Official YouTube
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