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Mitchell’s WWE NXT Results & Report! (8/31/21)

It’s a very packed NXT!

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NXT Coverage 2021

NXT Champion, Samoa Joe, awaits for someone to rise up from among the masses!

Gargano VS Knight, Ciampa VS Holland, O’Reilly VS Hudson and more, all on an action packed NXT! Will someone prove themselves worthy of a title match?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Mandy Rose w/ Gigi Dolin & Jacy Jayne VS Sarray; Sarray wins.
  • Kyle O’Reilly VS Duke Hudson; O’Reilly wins.
  • Imperium VS Drake Maverick & Grayson Waller; Imperium wins.
  • Johnny Gargano w/ #InDex VS LA Knight; Knight wins.
  • Jessi Kamea w/ Franky Monet & Robert Stone VS Raquel Gonzalez; Gonzalez wins.
  • Roderick Strong w/ The Diamond Mine VS Ikemen Jiro; Strong wins.
  • Tommaso Ciampa VS Ridge Holland; Ciampa wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

Mandy Rose w/ Gigi Dolin & Jacy Jayne VS Sarray!

The Golden Goddess is back again, and her proteges are right behind her! But more than that, Mandy’s back in the ring, ready to show how much she has grown. But will she be burned by the Warrior of the Sun?

The bell rings, Mandy dismisses Sarray’s handshake immediately, and fans duel already. The two circle, Mandy wants fans to only cheer her own but that’s not happening. Mandy and Sarray tie up, go around, and Mandy puts Sarray in a corner. The ref counts, Mandy messes with Sarray’s hair then lets off. Sarray chases after and Mandy uses a corner for defense! Can’t take what she dishes out, perhaps? Mandy takes her time returning, circles with Sarray, and they tie up. Sarray waistlocks, Mandy elbows free to then switch, and she slams Sarray to the mat. Mandy gloats, fans boo, but Mandy grinds Sarray’s face into the mat! And she even does push-ups to show off!

Mandy lets off, Sarray sits up and Mandy pie faces her. Sarray comes back with a forearm! Sarray runs, Gigi and Jacy do a bad job trying to swipe at her, and Sarray wheelbarrows Mandy for a victory roll to basement dropkick! Fans fire up with Sarray, she reels Mandy in for a fisherman, but Mandy fights free of the suplex. Sarray kicks, wrenches, tries again, but Mandy tries body scissors to block. Sarray powers through for the PERFECT PLEX! Bridging cover, TWO! Sarray goes after Mandy with a whip but Mandy reverses. Sarray ducks under the clothesline to come back with a heel kick! Cover, TWO! Sarray keeps her focus and the fans fire up again.

Sarray climbs as Mandy flounders. Sarray leaps but Mandy dodges the missile dropkick! Mandy hurries to rain down rights on Sarray then lets off to soak up the heat. Mandy drags Sarray up and talks some trash before she bumps Sarray off buckles. Mandy bumps Sarray off more buckles as the ref reprimands, and then Mandy stomps a mudhole into Sarray. The ref counts, Mandy lets off but then gets Sarray on the ropes. Mandy pulls hair and pushes Sarray’s face into ropes, but the ref counts so Mandy lets off. Mandy drags Sarray up, reels her in and snap suplexes! Cover, TWO! Mandy is annoyed but she drags Sarray around by her hair. Mandy sits Sarray up for a neck wrench!

Fans rally as Sarray endures the twist in her neck, the knee in her back, and Mandy messing her hair up more. Sarray fights to her feet, throws body shots and forearms, but Mandy shoves. Mandy scoops Sarray on the rebound for a FALL AWAY SLAM! And a kip up just because! Mandy looms over Sarray, taunts her, then drags her back up. Mandy hooks Sarray up for a modified cobra twist neck wrench. Fans still duel and Sarray still endures, and the ref reprimands Mandy for more hair pulling. Sarray fights, rolls Mandy and gets a leg! Mandy flails but Sarray still gets the deathlock! MUTA LOCK! Gigi and Jacy coach Mandy but the ref has them stay back.

Mandy endures, reaches around, and manages to thumb Sarray in the face! Sarray falls over and lets the hold go, then scrambles over to ropes. Mandy staggers over, gets Sarray up but Sarray blocks haymakers to give forearms! Mandy throws hands but Sarray ROCKS her! Sarray keeps on Mandy with those forearms, Mandy tries to cover up but Sarray just powers through! Mandy gets mad, Sarray eggs her on, and Mandy SLAPS Sarray! Sarray seethes and Mandy runs, Sarray dropkicks Mandy down! Mandy ends up on ropes and Sarray runs in, SUNRAY DROPKICK! Mandy falls out, Gigi and Jacy are their for her, and then they panic! Jacy demands a towel!

A towel is given, Jacy gets back to Mandy and uses the towel to cover Mandy up. Is Mandy bleeding or just bruised? Sarray demands Mandy get back and the ref’s ring count is 5 of 10! But Team Mandy is fleeing?! Mandy gets counted out, Sarray wins!

Winner: Sarray, by count-out

Well, the main thing is, Sarray’s getting back on track with a win! She was already burning up the Rose as it was, will Mandy and friends come back with thorns?

 

Tommaso Ciampa speaks.

“Ridge Holland did exactly what he said he was going to do.” Ciampa won’t “cry over spilt milk,” he and Timothy Thatcher have known that you can’t win them all. But what happened after the match, that Ciampa has a problem with. “Ridge, Pete and the boys taking out” Ciampa and Thatcher, and then using that billy club to put Thatcher out indefinitely! “That don’t sit well with me.” Ciampa sees that these boys want to run roughshod over NXT, but Ciampa IS NXT! Tonight, Ciampa fights for his home, his family, and even dedicates tonight’s “ass whooping” to Toothless Timmy himself.

If the boys want to be the baddest men in NXT, they need to see they picked a fight with the most DANGEROUS man on the planet! If they don’t know already, “a motivated Ciampa is a scary Ciampa!” Is the Psycho Killer going to put some fear in the heart of Northern Grit?

 

Kyle O’Reilly VS Duke Hudson!

Whether he’s #CoolKyle or Killer Kyle, O’Reilly is ready to fight and hook anyone with that submission game. However, The Smug Breakout Tournament entry sees his chance to change the dynamic of the NXT power rankings right here and now! Will Hudson put up his dukes and put a dent in Kyle’s newest NXT Championship hopes?

The bell rings and Duke already sees the rib tape. Kyle keeps Duke at bay with kicks but Duke shoves him to ropes. Kyle gets to a corner, jukes Duke then hits him with haymakers! Kyle turns things around and fires off on Duke in the corner, but lets off as the ref counts. Duke JABS Kyle and knocks him right down! Kyle sits up and has his leg guard as Duke follows him around the ring. Kyle avoids a stomp, gets a leg but Duke is too tall to just topple over. Duke smashes his knee into Kyle’s chin, then scoops him, only for Kyle to make that a SLEEPER! Kyle is a backpack with the body scissors, but Duke THROWS Kyle right off!

Duke composes himself, storms over but into a leg lock! Kyle wants that heel but Duke clubs Kyle’s thigh. Duke stays standing and powers free, then gets Kyle with both hands! Duke TOSSES Kyle to a corner, then ROCKS him with a body shot! Kyle falls over and grits his teeth but Duke gets him up for a big knee into the gut! Then another! Then a shove for another knee! Duke whips Kyle for a kitchen sink knee! Cover, TWO! Kyle shows his grit but Duke wraps on a rear bearhug! Kyle endures the squeeze and fights to his feet. Kyle pries the waistlock, wrenches the arm, but Duke whips him away. Duke hooks Kyle up but Kyle sees what Duke is after, we have dueling cobra twists!

Kyle gets Duke’s arm and has him in the abdominal stretch! But Duke powers out with a hip toss! Duke whips Kyle hard into a corner and Kyle bounces off buckles! Kyle falls over, Duke mocks Kyle’s air guitar skills, then he has Kyle’s legs. Duke stomps Kyle down the middle in the bad ribs! And then again! And a third time just for good measure. Duke taunts Kyle, scuffs him with his boot, but Kyle comes back with forearms and kicks! Kyle whips but his ribs limit him! Duke whips, kitchen sink turns into school boy, TWO! Kyle knees Duke in the ribs! AX but no Smash as Duke fireman’s carries, for a BIG GUTBUSTER! Kyle writhes as NXT goes picture in picture.

Duke watches Kyle while pacing. Duke drags Kyle up to wrench, KICK in the ribs, then waistlock to a body scissors! Kyle endures a new squeeze on the ribs but shakes his head. Kyle hooks Duke’s feet to make it a modified toehold! But Duke fish hooks Kyle’s nose! The ref counts, Duke lets off the fish hook and the body scissors, and then drags Kyle up. Duke whips, catches Kyle and puts Kyle in the cobra twist now! Kyle endures all over again as Duke thrashes him in the stretch. Kyle shakes his head, grits his teeth, and fans fire up as he fights free! Kyle throws muay thai knees, runs, but into a BIG back elbow! Duke seethes now as he paces around.

Duke sits Kyle up, clamps onto the arms and digs in a knee as he has a grounded motorcycle stretch. Kyle fights up so Duke shoves him away, then Duke rushes in with big body shots and knees in the corner! Kyle falls again, Duke rips away the rib tape! Duke CLUBS Kyle down, drops a big elbow, then covers, TWO! Duke keeps Kyle down with a rain of rights into the ribs! Duke paces, talks trash to Kyle, then sits him up to get the arms again. Duke has the motorcycle stretch again, but Kyle refuses to give up. Kyle fights against Duke’s stretch, gets to his feet again, but Duke wrangles him back down. NXT returns to single picture as Duke now has his boot on Kyle’s back.

Fans rally for Kyle, and they taunt Duke, “You Still Suck!” Kyle fights up again, Duke wrangles him but Kyle fights right back up. Kyle turns the hold around onto Duke! Duke turns it right around on Kyle, but Kyle flips, handsprings, but Duke blocks the back suplex! Duke CLUBS Kyle again, stalks up behind him, and back suplexes, only for Kyle to land on his feet! Kyle bobs ‘n’ weaves but with KICKS! Then a strike fest and leg sweep! Duke flounders to ropes, Kyle fires himself up and fans join in. Kyle runs in at the corner to forearm smash! Kyle wrenches an arm, ELBOW BREAKER! Leg pick for a DRAGON SCREW! Now Duke is the one writhing!

Kyle runs in to KICK the bad leg! And runs again, but into a DOUBLE AX HANDLE from Duke! Duke gets his bad leg moving, Kyle gets to a corner, and Duke runs in. Kyle BOOTS Duke first, then runs in, tilt-o-whirl to a GUILLOTINE! Kyle has the body scissors and he drags Duke down to the mat! Duke endures, reaches out, pries at the hold but he powers up instead. Duke runs and RAMS Kyle into a corner! Fans boo, Duke scoops Kyle, and throws a KNEE! Duke then runs in to clothesline Kyle at the corner! OVERHEAD Belly2Belly! Cover, TWO!! Kyle survives and Duke is shocked! Duke gets to his feet while Kyle goes to the apron.

Duke goes after Kyle and CLUBS him with big forearms. The ref reprimands because of the ropebreak, so Duke BOOTS! Kyle dodges and has the leg, for a DRAGON SCREW HOTSHOT! And then another DRAGON SCREW! Kyle fires up, climbs, KING KONG KNEE DROP to the leg! HEEL HOOK!! Duke endures, but he taps! Kyle wins!

Winner: Kyle O’Reilly, by submission

Duke was big and Duke was tough, but Kyle is savage with his submissions! Will Kyle get yet another chance at the NXT Championship?

 

Ilja Dragunov is here!

The NEW NXT UK Champion, the CZAR OF UNBESIEGBAR, is back after that truly brutal rematch with Walter! It is a new era for all of NXT, and as battered as he still feels, Dragunov still wants to speak to the fans. Fans tell him, “You Deserve It!” and he can’t help but smile. “Before I go back home, I wanted you all to see that I am still alive.” Fans don’t want Dragunov to leave so soon, but Dragunov says he feels even more alive than he’s ever felt before! He feels like “a man that has survived the biggest and most intense battle of his life!” Fans still chant and Dragunov admits, he likes it here. We will see him again soon, he promises.

But now, he takes pride in showing the world what it takes to be THE NXT UK Champion! “The will. The passion. The soul! The struggle. Who is willing to go through all of that to take this away from me?!” As we all saw, the Ring General has fallen! “Long live the CZAR!” The Moscow Madman has boldly called out both the NXT and NXT UK rosters, will there be anyone bold enough to accept his challenge?

 

Arash Markazi interviews Kay Lee Ray.

Arash notes that the Scary Queen of Scots picked perhaps “the most shocking time” during the “most impactful show” to make her NXT prime debut. What gives her that right to do that? KLR says she makes an impact wherever she goes. She thrives on the biggest moments. So of course she chose the biggest moment possible to let us all know she is here. So then, she’s going to be in NXT prime full time? “This division needs a boost. It needs a new top player. Someone to inject a bit of life into it, and that is exactly why Mr. Regal phoned me-”

Arash interrupts there to ask about Raquel Gonzalez and Dakota Kai, as well as Io Shirai and Ember Moon, and Zoey Stark- KLR stops Arash there to say she does NOT care about any of those names. Who even is Stark? Stark is lucky she has Io Shirai to hide behind right now. And speaking of Shirai, she must’ve foreseen KLR showing up, because now she’s buddied-up in the tag division. As for Kai, she couldn’t get the job done, and Ember Moon is just one Gory Bomb away from a broken head. Those are all yesterday’s news. KLR is here because Regal knows what she’s capable of.

And what is it she’s capable of? “Anything I want.” KLR dominated NXT UK, the longest reign of several decades. Now, she’ll do the same in the USA. Arash leaves it at that, but will KLR make sure there’s much more to talk about now that she’s here in NXT?

 

Backstage interview with Carmelo Hayes.

He’s the 2021 Breakout Tournament winner, but has it totally set in yet? Yes, it has. He feels like a champion already, but he has his golden ticket. He can choose any champion he wants. People are already thinking he’ll run it back with Kushida for the NXT Cruiserweight Championship, and he might. But there’s the North American Champion who just took a loss, so maybe Hayes swerves everyone by choosing that title. Or maybe still, Hayes goes right to the top with Samoa Joe. But Elektra Lopez walks in with sarcastic applause. Good for Hayes, having these options. But let’s set things straight: the NXT NAC is already Santos’ to win, not Melo’s.

Well Hayes won the title contract, he can do what he wants. But then the rest of Legado del Fantasma walks in. Escobar has Wilde and Mendoza calm down, and sarcastically says, “Don’t you know who this is? This is the Breakout Star of the Year.” Escobar congratulates Hayes on that, but also brings up how Hayes mentioned the North American title. That’s for him, not Hayes. But Hayes is new so he gets a pass. Mostly because Escobar is nice enough to let Hayes walk towards his title opportunity. Escobar does give Hayes one bit of advice, though. “Stay out of my business.” Hayes asks if that’s a threat, but also thinks of it as a challenge. Is Hayes jumping into the middle of the war between Legado and Hit Row?

 

Imperium VS Drake Maverick & Grayson Waller!

Fabian Aichner & Marcel Barthel not only kicked Alexander Wolfe out of the faction, but made sure Wolfe and Killian Dain were no longer viable in NXT! But Rockstar Spud holds a grudge, and it seems he’s gotten the 21st Century Success Story to be his partner. Will this newest odd couple be just as baller as Drake & Damo were? Or will Waller & Maverick get dunked on instead?

The teams sort out and Waller insists he start, since this is his NXT debut. Aichner starts for Imperium and circles with Waller. The two tie up, Aichner powers Waller to ropes but lets off as the ref counts. Aichner hits low, ROCKS Waller, then kicks him and bumps him off buckles. Aichner CHOPS Waller, but Aichner is busy arguing with the ref so Waller gets an arm and wrenches it. Aichner pulls hair, whips Waller to ropes, but Waller kicks back! Waller kicks again but Aichner blocks and reels him in for a LARIAT! Aichner drags Waller up, bumps him off buckles, then tags in Barthel. Imperium mugs Waller, Barthel clinches but Waller JABS and forearms!

Barthel chokes Waller, puts him in a corner, then CHOPS him before the BUTTERFLY SUPLEX! Waller writhes, flounders and gets to ropes while Barthel paces. Barthel whips, Waller reverses and leap frogs to then duck, only for Barthel to BOOT him down. Barthel PENALTY KICKS, CLUBS and PENALTY KICKS again! In other words, “NEIN!” Barthel clamps on a chinlock and thrashes Waller about but Waller jawbreakers free! Waller dodges Barthel, hot tags to Maverick and Aichner! Maverick rallies on Imperium, firing off kicks on Aichner! Aichner shoves, Maverick dropkicks his leg out, then runs and redirects for another basement dropkick!

Barthel gets in, Maverick dropkicks him then baits him to ropes. Maverick dumps Barthel out, but Aichner waistlocks. Maverick holds off the suplex, elbows free but Aichner reels him back in. Back suplex but Maverick lands on his feet! And Waller tags himself in!? Waller and Maverick argue since that wasn’t planned, and Aichner runs in to BOOT Waller down! Barthel drags Maverick out and THROWS him into steel girder! Aichner sets Waller up, Barthel tags in and then climbs up. EMPERIAL BOMB!! Cover, Imperium wins!

Winners: Imperium, by pinfall

Waller bit off more than he could chew, and he basically choked in his NXT debut. Is the duo of Waller & Maverick over already? Will Imperium fight their way back towards the NXT Tag Team Championships?

 

Indi Hartwell talks with Johnny Gargano backstage.

Indi just wants Johnny to “give him a chance.” Gargano will think about it. But Dexter Lumis is already there. Gargano tells him to stop doing that. Just be normal, Dex! Indi still holds out hope The Way will find a way to accept her Dex, will being in Johnny’s corner go a long way in helping that?

 

NXT hears from Pete Dunne and the boys.

Danny Burch says, “When you’ve been on the shelf for five months, one week is a really long time to have to wait. Isn’t that right, Oney?” Oney Lorcan says yes, and reminds MSK that the One Two called them out a week ago, so they want an answer. Dunne says, “Y’know who can’t seem to shut his mouth? Tommaso Ciampa. The most dangerous man on the planet? Are you mad?” Tonight, they’ll prove it. Ciampa’s facing a real bad man in Ridge Holland.

And Holland says for himself, if Ciampa wants to dedicate this to his mate, Thatcher, “that’s nice.” But maybe they can share how motivated each of them is, when they’re next to each other in the hospital. Is Holland going to break Ciampa’s Blackheart along with his body?

 

Team Mandy gets revenge on Sarray!

The thorns come out after all! Gigi and Jacy jump Sarray and deal some damage! Will Sarray get reinforcements to help her prune back these weeds?

 

Johnny Gargano w/ #InDex VS LA Knight!

As if #PapaJohn didn’t approve of this relationship already, he can’t even get a proper no-look high-five! Indi and Dexter aside, can Gargano focus on shutting up the big mouthed Million Dollar Megastar? Or will tonight be L A Knight’s night, yeah, dummy?

The bell rings, fans chant “LA Sucks!” as he ties up with Gargano. Knight scoops and SLAMS Gargano, but Gargano gets to a corner. Knight talks some trash on Gargano and Dexter, perhaps trying to convince Indi she’s engaged to the wrong man. But fans chant “INDEX! INDEX!” in support as Gargano comes back to tie up with Knight. Knight gets an arm, wrenches it to a wristlock, but Gargano rolls and wrenches back to a drop toehold. Gargano has a facelock, Knight fights and moves around but Gargano gator rolls with him. Knight fights up and powers out with a toss! Knight checks his face, then clamps on a headlock. Fans boo Knight as he grinds Gargano down.

Gargano fights up, powers out but Knight runs him over with a shoulder. Fans boo again but Knight grins and runs. Gargano dodges, hurdles, comes back and drops down onto Knight’s drop down! Knight scrambles to get the ropebreak, thwarting Gargano’s crossface. Gargano has Knight in a corner but Knight JABS him! Knight throws more hands, kicks and still more hands, before he whips Gargano to ropes. Gargano ducks, dodges and RANAS Knight! Then atomic drops to an arm WRINGER! La Magistrol, TWO! Knight gets up but into Gargano’s dropkick! Fans fire up for “JOHNNY WRESTLING!” as Gargano stalks Knight.

Gargano gets Knight up, has him in a corner and CHOPS him! Knight kicks back, Gargano CHOPS him again, then throws forearms and more CHOPS! Gargano fires off on Knight, lets off as the ref counts, and then wrenches for an ELBOW BREAKER! That Million Dollar Arm gets another ELBOW BREAKER, but then Knight pulls hair! Knight whips and CLOBBERS Gargano, then smirks as he sees Gargano at the ropes. Knight runs in but Gargano sends him out! And then DIVES! Direct hit and Gargano soaks up the cheers from the fans. Knight sits up at the ramp, Gargano goes after him again with a CHOP against the boards. Dexter is watching closely while Indi is just watching Dexter.

Gargano puts Knight in the ring, fakes out his elbow drop, and then gets in to wrench the arm again. Knight ROCKS Gargano with a haymaker first, then gets Gargano up for a FLAPJACK HOTSHOT! Indi grows worried for Gargano as Knight gets Gargano up. Snap suplex, and then Knight gloats. Gargano gets to ropes again but Knight goes to the apron. Knight KNEES Gargano back into the ring, then slingshots for the SHOULDER TACKLE! Knight soaks up the heat as NXT goes to break.

NXT returns and Knight CLUBS Gargano down. Knight chokes Gargano on the ropes! The ref reprimands, Knight lets off and brings Gargano around for a scoop. Gargano slips out, waistlocks but Knight bucks that off. Knight wants a neckbreaker but Gargano makes it a backslide! TWO, Gargano runs in but Knight dodges to kick him in the back! NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Knight is annoyed but this is Johnny Triple Crown he’s facing. Knight RAMS Gargano in a corner, then throws his shoulder in more. The ref counts, Knight lets off and paces. Fans taunt Knight as he runs in, and Gargano dodges! Knight hits buckles, Gargano CHOPS and forearms!

Gargano whips, Knight sees the back drop and throws Gargano down by his head! Knight goes to a corner to catch his breath, and then runs out, only to miss the knee drop! Gargano gets up, ducks a clothesline for the schoolboy kick! Knight staggers, Gargano runs in to forearm smash! Gargano goes up, leaps and TORNADO COMPLETE SHOTS! Knight bails out but Gargano builds speed to DIVE into a forearm! Knight gets up and slingshots, but Gargano slides under! Knight belly flops, Gargano aims now, slingshot SPEAR! Direct hit and a jackknife cover, TWO! Gargano is growing annoyed now but he drags Knight back up.

Gargano bumps Knight off buckles, climbs up the corner and rains down punches! Fans count it out and Gargano gets 5 before Knight carries Gargano. Gargano sunset flips it, TWO! BUZZSAW! Gargano runs but into a pop-up! Knight catches Gargano on his shoulder, then tosses him backward for an inverted powerslam! Cover, TWO! Knight is growing frustrated but he paces about. Fans rally behind Gargano, and Indi tries to get Dexter to join in. Knight waits for Gargano to stand, kick but Gargano shoves out of the cravat! Gargano goes to superkick but Knight blocks and spins Gargano for another kick of his own! Gargano slips out of BFT to drop down, GargaNO Escape!

But Knight rolls it to a cover, TWO!! Gargano narrowly escapes and he ROCKS Knight with a forearm. Gargano runs in, Knight puts him on the apron, but Gargano enziguris back! Gargano slingshots but Knight punches him down! No One Final Beat, and Dexter catches Gargano?! Indi smiles because this is a good thing, but Gargano scrambles away as soon as he realizes what happened. Gargano is still against #InDex, and he thinks Dexter is picking a fight with him. But as Knight runs in from behind, Dexter moves Gargano aside to stare Knight down! Knight says his fight is with Gargano, not Dexter. But then Gargano SUPERKICKS Knight into the ring!

Indi is excited and wants Gargano to try the high-five with Dexter again. Dexter holds his hand out but Gargano hesitates. Fans want to see it, but Knight reels Gargano in! B F T!! Cover, Knight wins!!

Winner: LA Knight, by pinfall

Indi realizes this is technically her fault, but she isn’t about to say it out loud. Has this set back The Way accepting Dexter by several steps? And does this mean LA Knight is that much closer to challenging Samoa Joe?

 

MSK has NXT Media follow them.

Nash Carter & Wes Lee apologize to the cameraman for asking him to do this while in the bathroom, but this has to be documented. They go to William Regal’s office and Carter reminds Lee to be professional and knock, Regal prefers that. They knock, Regal answers the door and welcomes the tag champs in. To cut to the chase, MSK wants to give Lorcan & Burch their opportunity at the titles. Regal says that’s very noble. Lee connects the dots, going from how Burch got hurt so that he and Lorcan were stripped of the titles, and MSK never really beat Lorcan & Burch on their run to becoming champions. So as fighting champions, MSK want to have this match.

Regal understands, especially since Lorcan & Burch never got a rematch for the titles. Given their current behavior, such as attacking Ciampa & Thatcher, Regal wasn’t going to give Lorcan & Burch their shot. But if MSK insists, next week we will see MSK VS The One Two fight for the NXT Tag Team Championships! MSK thank Regal for that decision and feel so much better now. But will they feel so much worse should Lorcan & Burch knock them off their thrones?

 

Boa speaks.

“I let her down. But Mei Ying will show the world the strength of Tian Sha!” Wait, does that mean…? YES! Mei Ying, the fearsome leader of Tian Sha, finally has her in-ring debut! Who will feel the wrath of the dragon empress?

 

Jessi Kamea w/ Franky Monet & Robert Stone VS Raquel Gonzalez!

While the Robert Stone Brand has been made over in Franky’s bougie bad image, Jessi might be in for a brutal makeover of her own. Will Big Mami Cool rearrange Jessi’s face to send a message to Kay Lee Ray?

The bell rings, Raquel and Jessi tie up, and Raquel powers Jessi to a corner. The ref counts, Raquel TOSSES Jessi away at 3! Jessie comes right back, they tie up again and Raquel knees low. Raquel suplexes, but Jessi slips out and gets a leg! Raquel CLUBS Jessi, reels her back in and gut wrenches to a Canadian rack! Raquel RAMS Jessi into a corner, puts her on the top rope, and talks smack to Stone and Franky. But Jessi throws a forearm back! Jessi hops down but Raquel blocks her boot! Raquel scoops Jessi for a sidewalk slam! No cover as Raquel goes right up the corner, for the VADER ELBOW! Now cover, ROPEBREAK.

Jessi drags herself to the apron but Raquel keeps her cool. Raquel runs in to BOOT, but Jessi dodges! Jessi hotshots the leg! Jessi hurries inside, ducks and dodges and chop blocks! Jessi gets the leg but Raquel whips her away. Raquel follows, Jessi stops and dodges to then trip Raquel up! Jessi KICKS Raquel’s back leg, then BASEMENT WHEEL KICKS! Jessi has a standing toehold but Raquel kicks at her with the free leg. Raquel kicks Jessi away, avoids the wheel kick this time, then dropkicks Jessi down! Jessi staggers into a scoop and SLAM! Raquel gets Jessi up to ALLEY OOP HOTSHOT! Jessi flounders, Raquel gets a waistlock but Jessi stomps a foot to get free! PELE!

Jessi runs at Raquel but Raquel CLOBBERS her in return! Raquel gets Jessi up, CHINGONA BOMB!! Cover, Raquel wins!

Winner: Raquel Gonzalez, by pinfall

Stone checks on Jessi while Franky steps to Raquel and talks some smack. Franky laughs but Raquel stares daggers at her. Will bougie bad be next up to go after the NXT Women’s title belt?

 

Backstage interview with Ember Moon.

The Shenom requested this time to speak, and she says, “I’m just sitting in the back trying to enjoy my birthday,” so happy birthday, Ember. But KLR is running her mouth. Ember gets it, KLR name dropped her to try and make a name for herself. But… Ember isn’t like anyone KLR’s faced. KLR was the longest reigning NXT UK Women’s Champion and they can’t take that from KLR. But Ember will take away KLR’s ability to talk crap if she doesn’t keep Ember’s name out of her mouth. Now if KLR wants to do something about that, Ember says they go next week. Can someone pass that along for her? Will Ember look to snuff out KLR’s flames before they get too hot?

 

Wade Barrett interviews Samoa Joe.

What kind of insight can Joe give us into his expectations as the NEW NXT Champion, as well as for NXT’s future as a whole? Joe says his expectations might be a bit unexpected. Many will assume he wants to dominate the competition, terrorize his opponents. That all goes without saying. But the reality is, Joe’s expectations lie more in reestablishing a precedent. Joe wants to redefine what it means to be NXT Champion, what it means to be a standard bearer, as “a man who walks forward and represents himself in the utmost fashion in all aspects of what we do.”

Joe says this began long before he ever got the title back. It started in the week leading up to TakeOver 36. It wasn’t spent with the luxury of a nice fight camp, of being relaxed or being 100%. No, Joe wasn’t afforded such a luxury. Joe was over in Las Vegas, holding tryouts for the next big superstars that would secure the future of NXT. And then right from there, Joe was on a red-eye away from SummerSlam, no sleep at all, jetlagged and dying to see his family, but his focus had to be on NXT. There was a mission to accomplish, Joe needed to get the title back. And Joe needed to be the one to get the title so that said precedent could be set.

Wade notes Joe did set that precedent, as this is a record breaking third reign. With this being Joe’s third reign, does that change perspective? Yes. Joe has learned one thing: legacy is important. The list of men who carried this title before him is itself important. Men like Shinsuke Nakamura, Finn Balor, now Joe carries that legacy and the precedent. From media to fans to everyday communication, how Joe represents himself to the world, “this now will be what it takes to be a champion in NXT.” Joe’s path, Joe’s example, it will all be the way to become NXT Champion. Now, this all lies in the hands of those around Joe.

Who on the roster steps up? Who amongst them braves the wild of coming at Joe, trying to seize destiny? These questions need to be answered, and Joe is more than happy to help us find those answers. A new champion, a new era, will Samoa Joe forge NXT into something even more amazing?

 

Roderick Strong w/ The Diamond Mine VS Ikemen Jiro!

The Savior of the Backbreaker put out a challenge to the Cruiserweight Division to help him prepare for challenging Kushida. Answering that challenge straight out of the purple ‘n’ orange was The Handsome One! Jiro looks up to Kushida, but will he do the Time Splitter proud against the Diamond Mine’s leader? Or will he be crushed by the pressure instead?

The bell rings, Strong and Jiro circle, Jiro shows off the jacket but Strong CHOPS him down! Strong fires off hands, CHOPS and knees in a corner, then brings Jiro around for a fireman’s carry. Jiro slips off, shows off the jacket again, then dodges to run. Jiro arm-drags Strong then runs to RANA him! JACKET PUNCH! Strong is down but he scrambles out to regroup with the Diamond Mine. But Jiro PLANCHAS! Strong gets out of the way, Jiro lands on his feet, and then runs in, into a hip toss into the steel steps! Strong leaves Jiro behind to get in the ring and the ring count begins. Jiro writhes, Strong goes out to fetch him into the ring, and then stomps Jiro all over.

Strong stands Jiro up to CHOP him off his feet. Strong stomps Jiro more and more and shouts, “You made a big mistake!” BACKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Strong wraps on a chinlock, clubs Jiro, then traps an arm. Strong has a grounded cobra twist, Jiro endures and fans rally up. Strong stands Jiro up, Jiro throws body shots but Strong knees and whips. Jiro reverses, runs in but Strong dodges. Jiro elbows back, hops up but Strong YANKS him down! Strong grins while Jiro writhes, and Strong stomps away on him again. Cover, TWO! Strong is right back on with a chinlock and Malcolm Bivens makes sure the Creed Brothers are taking mental notes.

Strong shifts sides to get another seated cobra twist, but Jiro fights up. Jiro throws body shots, Strong knees low, then Strong throws forearms. Jiro boots back, Strong CHOPS him, then Strong runs side to side. Jiro dodges to send Strong into a corner! Jiro rallies with forearms and a JACKET PUNCH! JACKET PUNCH! JACKET PUNCH! DISCUS JACKET PUNCH! Strong goes to a corner, Jiro whips him corner to corner but Strong reverses. Strong runs in but Jiro dodges again! Jiro hotshots Strong down then ARABIAN PRESSES! Cover, TWO! Strong is still in this but Jiro has the fans fired up. Jiro ducks an elbow to small package, TWO!

Jiro KICKS the legs out but Strong KNEES right back! Strong gets Jiro up, END OF HEARTACHE! Strong gets Jiro up again, another END OF HEARTACHE!! Cover, Strong wins!

Winner: Roderick Strong, by pinfall

A pretty ugly end for the Handsome One’s valiant efforts, but Strong is showing how ready he is to add gold to the Diamond Mine. Strong calls Kushida a coward for staying away, and calls himself the uncrowned Cruiserweight Champion. But will we see in time that the Super Junior is still better than the hardheaded Strong?

 

Backstage interview with Io Shirai, Zoey Stark, Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter.

It is now official, the NXT Women’s Tag Team Champions have their first defense against the human highlight reel duo next week! Kacy says she and Kayden both respect Shirai & Stark, but they are the real team, inside and out of the ring. Kacy & Kayden are best friends without even trying. “This happens naturally,” but Stark & Shirai can’t say that. Stark points out that Shirai is one of the most decorated women in NXT History. When the team started, Stark was 100& committed to it. She might even go so far as to take a bullet for Shirai. Wow, okay, going to extremes but whatever.

Shirai speaks up and tells KC Squared that she doesn’t like either of them. She still doesn’t like Stark that much, either, but Stark is her teammate, so she’ll win alongside her. KC Squared says, “We’ll see about that.” Stark says they definitely will. But then Shirai is gone before Stark can offer her fist bump. Will the champions become friends through this next battle? Or will the best friends take those titles and make themselves champions?

 

Backstage interview with Cameron Grimes.

How has the Carolina Caveman been since Ted DeBiase’s “final lesson” last week? Grimes tells McKenzie that that darn DeBiase taught us all there’s still only one Million Dollar Man. But Grimes also learned that there’s only one Cameron Grimes! So Grimes will take Ted’s advice and- The Grizzled Young Veterans interrupt. Zack Gibson says, “Look who it is! The Million Dollar Redneck himself! How does it feel, lad, to go through all that struggle for weeks and weeks and weeks, to have nothing but a blagged replica championship to show for it?” Speaking of which, James Drake presents another replica Million Dollar Championship! Oh, wait, does this make Gibson a champion now?

Gibson continues to mock Grimes by saying next week, Grimes can be replica North American Champion. Or even replica NXT Champion or replica Universal Champion! Imagine that! Maybe they all go to WWE Shop to get it! Grimes laughs at GYV’s jokes. They need a loan, right? Gotta make up for going halfsies on the replica Million Dollar belt, right? Grimes wants to see that for himself. Man, WWE Shop does a great job! McKenzie, you should feel the weight of this thing. It feels heavier than the one Ted gave Grimes. Looks a bit better, too. Grimes then drops the belt on Gibson’s foot! Oh, well, maybe this will help. Grimes tosses them a $100 bill as he shouts, “TO THE MOON~!”

Grimes leaves Drake hopping mad and Gibson just plain hopping. Will GYV look to get even with Grimes in the ring next time?

 

Tommaso Ciampa VS Ridge Holland!

Old Man Ciampa put Northern Grit on notice, now it’s time to make good on the promise! But with the Bruiserweight and the One Two in his corner, is it all but guaranteed that Ridge wrecks Ciampa and puts him on the sideline, right next to Timothy Thatcher?

The bell rings and the two tie up right away. Ridge powers Ciampa to a corner, the ref counts and Ridge lets off quick. Ciampa headlocks but Ridge powers out. Ciampa rams shoulders with Ridge but neither man falls, so Ciampa quickly gets the headlock and takeover! Ridge rolls back but Ciampa blocks that to shift to a facelock. Ridge gets up and powers Ciampa to a corner, then fires off body shots and uppercuts. Ridge wrenches, Ciampa ROCKS him but Ridge clinches for an OVERHEAD Belly2Belly! Ciampa gets to the other corner, Ridge blocks his boot to DECK him with a forearm! Ridge KICKS Ciampa right in the back and Ciampa writhes to the apron.

Ridge stands Ciampa up, the ref has the boys back off, and Ciampa hotshots Ridge down! Ciampa gets in, Ridge is in the corner now, and Ciampa runs in to KNEE Ridge right in the face! The boys glare at Ciampa, but Ciampa runs again. Lorcan & Burch bail Ridge out but Ciampa goes out after them all. Ridge scoops Ciampa, aims for boards, but Ciampa slips off to shove Ridge into those boards! Ciampa blocks Ridge’s body shot, wrenches Ridge’s arm, and POSTS Ridge shoulder first! The ref reprimands but Ciampa gets in the ring to refresh the count. Ciampa throws hands then puts Ridge on the table to CLUB him in the chest!

Ciampa gets space, runs in and KNEES Ridge off the desk! Ciampa taunts Ridge’s boys before sitting on the apron to pat himself on the back. The boys crowd Ciampa as he gets in the ring, but Ciampa sees Ridge making his comeback. Ciampa gets Ridge in the ropes, Ridge powers out but Ciampa BOOTS him down! Lorcan & Burch get on the apron, the ref tells them to get down and Ciampa swipes at them. Lorcan & Burch get away, Ciampa runs at Ridge, but Ridge POUNCES Ciampa into a corner! Fans boo and Ridge checks his chin as NXT goes picture in picture.

Ridge storms over to drop knees on Ciampa’s face, as well as falling ax handles. Ridge drags Ciampa back up, EuroUppers then has Ciampa on ropes to choke him! The ref counts, Ridge lets off while barking at the fans and Ciampa slumps down. Ridge drags Ciampa from the ropes, stands him back up and scoops him for a BACKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Ridge gets frustrated but he stomps Ciampa down. Ridge clamps onto Ciampa for a neck wrench. Ciampa fights up, throws body shots then a jawbreaker! Ciampa runs in at the corner to CHOP and CHOP Ridge, then whips him corner to corner. Ridge reverses hard and Ciampa bounces off buckles.

Ridge’s boys watch as Ridge stands on Ciampa’s neck. The ref counts, Ridge lets off and Ciampa sputters. Ciampa drags himself up but Ridge kicks him to a corner. Ridge throws hands, Ciampa CHOPS back. Ciampa kicks, Ridge kicks back, then Ridge CLUBS Ciampa down! Ridge catches his breath before he stomps Ciampa’s arm. Ridge kicks Ciampa down again then stalks him to ropes. NXT returns to single picture as Ridge whips Ciampa hard into another corner. Ridge taunts Ciampa, what with this match being dedicated to Thatcher. Ridge stands Ciampa up, and Ciampa throws forearms! Ridge ROCKS Ciampa back and now we have a forearm brawl!

Ridge ROCKS Ciampa again, Ciampa sits down but has his fists up. Ridge turns him around to CLUB him in the face! Fans rally for Ciampa as Ridge clamps on a chinlock. Ciampa endures, fights up, but Ridge CLUBS him down again. Ridge whips Ciampa to ropes, but Ciampa KICKS back! Ridge elbows Ciampa in a corner, whips him corner to corner, but Ciampa comes back to CLOBBER Ridge! Fans fire up with Ciampa and the forearms and CHOPS start flying! Ridge EuroUppers Ciampa off his feet, but Ciampa staggers back up to KNEE Ridge! Ciampa runs in to clothesline in the corner, then he goes side to side to clothesline again!

Ciampa keeps going, another clothesline! And then point-blank clotheslines over and over! Ciampa gets five and fires up more. He brings Ridge out, winds up, runs and builds speed to LARIAT! Cover, TWO!! Ridge is showing that grit but his boys are getting frustrated. Ciampa reels Ridge in, underhooks, but Ridge powers up to ALABAMA SLAM Ciampa down! The ref checks on Ciampa, the repaired neck is still a concern. Ciampa refuses to let this stop here, so Ridge high stacks, TWO! Fans cheer Ciampa’s toughness but Ridge’s boys want him to end this. Ridge stalks Ciampa to the ropes, shoves him and ROCKS him in the back with a forearm! Ridge shoves and ROCKS Ciampa again!

Ridge gets Ciampa up a third time but Ciampa elbows back! Ciampa staggers but he throws hands! Ridge throws those hands back and the brawling is back! Ciampa hits, Ridge hits, then Ciampa fires off JABS! Ciampa fires off hands from all sides and has Ridge on the ropes! The fans are thunderous as Ciampa reels Ridge in, only for Ridge to ROCK him again! So Ciampa CHOPS back! Both men wobble, Ciampa grits his teeth as he fireman’s carries Ridge to the AIR RAID CRASH! Cover, TWO!! Ridge’s boys are upset but he’s still hanging in there with a former NXT Champion. Ridge goes to ropes, Ciampa goes to the apron! Ridge fights off the DDT to HEADBUTT Ciampa down!

Ridge follows Ciampa as he crawls around the way. Ciampa stands, Ridge scoops him, and RAMS him into the boards! Ridge drops Ciampa and goes around, but Ciampa dodges! Ridge runs into boards himself, both men go to the ring at 8 of 10! Ciampa refreshes the count but Ridge grabs at him first. Ciampa back hands and CHOPS and CHOPS and CHOPS! Ridge ROCKS Ciampa in return, scoops him, but Ciampa fights with knees! Ciampa is in the ring, KNEES away on Ridge in the ropes over and over, then reels Ridge in for WILLOWS BELL!! Cover, Ciampa wins!!

Winner: Tommaso Ciampa

But Dunne DECKS Ciampa! The boys are sore losers and they’re finishing off Ciampa for Ridge! Lorcan & Burch sit Ciampa up but MSK shows up! The One Two go and brawl with Lee & Carter! SUPERKICK for Burch, back drop for Oney! MSK throw Burch into boards, then go after Dunne and Ridge! Dunne and Ridge bail out, they’ve done enough fighting for tonight. MSK makes sure Ciampa is alright, and clearly the boys can’t just do whatever they want. Will Lee & Carter make sure Lorcan & Burch learn that directly next week? And what of Ciampa’s grudge with Ridge and Dunne?


My Thoughts:

First off, yes, I am personally very happy that I was able to do my Play By Play again so soon. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to try already, but this was such a packed NXT, I felt worse thinking about letting this one go by me. And this was definitely a packed episode, where it felt like they were trying to get everyone in tonight. It could be because of the obvious remake for the brand that’s coming down the pipeline, making this and next week like a go-home/good-bye episode. The various backstage interview promos were on the cheesier side, but I like that we’re getting more Grimes VS GYV and that we’re going to see Shirai & Stark VS Kacy & Kayden, those are going to be a lot of fun.

One of the bigger things from those backstage promos is Carmelo Hayes getting to touch on each of the divisions. Hayes VS Escobar is going to be a very good match, and I like that Elektra Lopez already plays a role in Legado as being their spokesperson when dealing with other superstars. I actually do like the idea that a guy that is eligible for the Cruiserweight title wants something else to surprise us, but maybe Hayes can become one of those guys who wants multiple titles at once. WWE needs more wrestlers who are greedy and want more titles at once. Now I don’t see Hayes taking the North American Championship, but he can have a great match with Swerve to build his own power level.

Mandy VS Sarray was a great surprise as it wasn’t advertised, and I do like that Mandy’s taking that “superficial wrestler” angle. One bad dropkick to her face and she doesn’t want to fight, but then her minions get revenge for her. Maybe at some point, Sarray teams with a women’s tag team to take Team Mandy on 3v3. Honestly, it could be whoever has the tag titles after next week. And learning Mei Ying (Karen Q) is finally getting (back) in the ring is big stuff. I still say they should’ve gotten her in the ring sooner, aka when Xia Li was still healthy, because those two could’ve really fired up the Women’s Tag Division pretty quickly. But something is better than nothing, I’m excited for that.

KLR had a great interview promo calling out and talking smack on all the major names in the division right now, because all of those can count as “dream matches” for NXT. Ember being the one to respond is good, she will be a great start for KLR’s string of wins. Raquel VS Jessi was a bit clunky but I think that’s just from Jessi not having a lot of singles ring experience. Raquel of course wins, but I do like that Franky is stepping to her rather than being cowardly. Dragunov had a great promo and the fans clearly love him, but we all know one day, Dragunov has to go back to the UK to do NXT UK tapings. Maybe he has one more match on NXT as a great send-off.

Imperium of course won against Maverick since Maverick’s partner, Waller, was so gung-ho and cocky. But this is great continuity for Maverick overall, since he was feuding with Imperium before Nick Craptastic Khan went and ruined things releasing people. I think now that Walter is not NXT UK Champion, he can spend time on NXT prime and Imperium as a whole can start dominating this brand. Meanwhile, Samoa Joe has a great interview promo, and so much of what he said about the NXT Championship legacy, precedent and standards is alluding to what is going to happen with the brand’s makeover that WWE is already shoving down our throats with those little “NXT COMING SOON” ads.

Strong VS Jiro was really good but of course Strong wins. He is really fired up for his Cruiserweight Championship match, that match is going to be big, not just for the Cruiserweight Division but also NXT as a whole, so hopefully we don’t have to wait too long as Kushida heals up. Then all the other matches, I wonder if we’re getting an unofficial contender’s tournament. Kyle VS Duke, Gargano VS Knight, and Ciampa VS Holland, all great stuff, but I feel like the winners were chosen rather strategically for future matches. Kyle of course wins, Duke is still pretty new (even though he’s just Brendan Vink renamed), and Knight won because of The Way #InDex story.

Kyle VS Knight sounds like a really great next step to determine who challenges Joe, too hard to call really. But I hope that’s what we’re getting, as I agree with Brad Abel, someone needed to call him “La Knight,” and Kyle was the man who did it. Meanwhile, Ciampa winning was a bit of a surprise, that was a brutal, gritty match. But I suppose to keep the story going, Ciampa had to win so that “the boys” don’t just move on to someone else. MSK asking to give Lorcan & Burch their title match and then backing Ciampa up tonight, great stuff for next week right there. And while it might be a bit early to talk WarGames again, but c’mon. “The Boys” VS MSK, Ciampa and a returning Thatcher is definitely what the next one should be.

My Score: 9/10


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Coverage

Mitchell’s WWE Raw Results & Report! (1/17/22)

Is Becky Lynch sweatin’ Doudrop?

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WWE Raw 2022

The Man prepares for the Royal Rumble!

“Doudrop” Piper Niven is coming for the Raw Women’s Championship, and she won’t be Manhandled so easily! How will Becky Lynch counter Piper’s power?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Bianca Belair & Liv Morgan VS “Doudrop” Piper Niven & Becky Lynch; Piper & Becky win.
  • Damian Priest VS Kevin Owens; Kevin wins.
  • Finn Balor VS Austin Theory; Theory wins.
  • Nikki A.S.H. VS Rhea Ripley; No Contest.
  • Reggie w/ Dana Brooke VS Omos; Omos wins.
  • 8 Man Tag: The Street Profits & The Mysterios VS Apollo Crews, Commander Azeez & The Dirty Dawgs; The Street Profits & Mysterios win.
  • Bobby Lashley w/ MVP VS Seth Rollins; Lashley wins, by disqualification.

PLAY BY PLAY

Becky Lynch heads to the ring!

Tulsa, Oklahoma, The Man has come ’round! Fans chant her name as she gets the mic, and she welcomes them to the Big Time! “Now we are less than two weeks away from the Royal Rumble, and the Raw Women’s Division has never been hotter. And whether you like to admit it or not, there’s only one person responsible for that, and that’s me.” Becky says it is so hot that there are stars from generations past, like Lita, Mickie James and the Bella Twins, all hoping that they can win the Rumble and challenge the #VanGOAT at WrestleMania. Face it, they need Becky because she makes stars.

Look no further than Doudrop. Becky has kindly given her the biggest opportunity of her life, a taste of the Big Time at one of the biggest events of the year. The people didn’t get her that! Piper Niven didn’t get it for herself. Becky did that! That is what Becky does! She makes people better, than she beats ’em! But Becky will admit that she admires Piper’s tenacity. She came from the rolling hills of Scotland and made a name for herself. Well no, someone else had to make up a name for her. So Becky will shoot it straight for “Doudou.” A doudrop will never be champion so long as The Man is still here.

But speaking of, here she comes! Piper storms right up to the ring, gets herself a mic and says she’s gonna tell Becky something. “You didn’t get me anything. I got myself this title match at Royal Rumble. But if it was really your plan to face me instead of Bianca, than it’s the biggest mistake you’ve ever made. Just make sure you stay well out of my way tonight.” Becky says she did get Piper that win last week, and if Piper just follows her lead, they’ll get a win here tonight. But here comes Bianca Belair! “Oh, Becky. You really out here spittin’ all this nonsense about being the GOAT, the greatEST of all time, but let me remind y’all that you can’t spell greatest without E S T.”

Bianca joins Piper and Becky in the ring as fans chant for “EST! EST!” Bianca reminds us SHE is the EST of WWE. And Doudrop, uh, okay. The only reason Piper is facing Becky is because Ms. Big Time was so scared of Bianca, she interfered in last week’s match. But girl, uh-uh. That’s just buyin’ time. Because Bianca is officially entering the Royal Rumble match! And it’s gonna be every woman for themselves, so if Bianca’s gotta throw out every 29 other women like she did last year, she’ll do it. Then she’ll go main event WrestleMania… again. And Bianca can go after whichever champion she wants, which could be Becky or Piper.

But now, Bianca’s tag partner, Liv Morgan, arrives! “Well, well, well, Bianca. We may be tag teaming tonight, but I am also officially entering myself in the Royal Rumble match. And that’s not all, that’s not all. Because in two weeks, I’m also the one winning it.” But that means Bianca will be one of the 29 she outlasts on the way to WrestleMania. But since we’re on the same page- Piper pretends to snore and then says this is boring. Everyone, shut up and ref, get in here! Piper wants to fight, but it’s Becky who riles up Liv and Bianca, and then uses Piper as a shield! Piper welcomes someone to bring it, but this starts after the break.

 

Chad Gable prepares a speech.

“Greetings and salutations…” Otis walks over, the valedictorian of The Alpha Academy. Will this graduation ceremony go off without a hitch?

 

Bianca Belair & Liv Morgan VS “Doudrop” Piper Niven & Becky Lynch!

Raw returns and the bell rings, and Bianca dropkicks Piper! Piper stays up but Bianca whips. Piper blocks, reverses, but Bianca goes up tot ell Piper to kiss this. Then Bianca leaps over Piper, spins her around and reels her in, but Piper blocks the suplex. Piper suplexes, Bianca slips out and then dodges in the corner! Piper hits buckles, Bianca ROCKS Piper with a forearm, then runs in to ram Piper. Piper rebounds to run Bianca over! Piper runs, Becky tags in! Piper is annoyed with Becky but Becky says she’s got this. They argue, Becky turns around into a dropkick! Bianca kips up, tags Liv, Liv dodges Becky to DECK Piper and SHOTGUN Becky!

Becky is in a corner, Liv back body blocks, then SHINING WIZARDS! Liv whips, Becky reverses but Liv stops to back elbow. Liv goes up to leap and missile dropkick Becky down! Liv then brings Becky around, springboard CODE BREAKER! Cover, Piper breaks it! Bianca gets in to ROCK Piper, but she can’t lift Piper for the torture rack. Piper shoves Bianca into a corner and SPLASHES! Piper runs at Liv but Liv sends her out! Becky rolls Liv up, has feet on the ropes, TWO! Liv kicks low, KICKS again, then runs in, but Becky dodges! Liv elbows Becky again, but runs into a MANHANDLE SLAM! Cover, Piper breaks it?! But that was her own teammate!

Piper drags Becky out of the way, wants to cover, but she’s not legal! So Piper hurries back to her corner, tags herself in, and then runs to SPLASH Liv! Cover, Piper and Becky win!

Winners: “Doudrop” Piper Niven & Becky Lynch, by pinfall

Then Piper celebrates by giving Becky a VADER SEATED SENTON! Piper laughs as she looms over Becky, but will she have the last laugh at the Rumble?

 

Reggie and Dana Brooke talk with someone.

Reggie knows they’ve faced giants in their career, so can they give Reggie any advice when facing Omos tonight? The person he’s talking to is Edge! Edge thinks, and he tells Reggie that he can do things Edge can’t even comprehend. So he has a chance? Hell no! Beth Phoenix scolds Edge with a smack, and Edge says he still wishes Reggie luck. And Beth talks with Dana real quick. She’s seen Dana bust her butt for years here, so it’s so great Dana has a title. Dana thanks Beth for that, and hurries away to keep up with Reggie. Edge and Beth then see Damian Priest. They shake hands and hug and Priest is happy to see the Grit Couple.

Edge says he likes what he sees with Priest’s other side. Yeah, Priest’s other side is a bit edgy, but being serious here, Priest wants some ideas on the Rumble match. Edge has experience, having won two, one of which he won from starting first. There’s no better man to ask for pointers than Edge. Well cardio is one thing, but the main thing is to keep doing you. Priest’s style is working. Someone brings over a note for Beth, and it’s from Maryse. She wants to meet Beth 1v1, woman to woman. Edge says that’s suspicious. Beth is of course going to go but Edge is going to go with her. Beth agrees, and Edge says he and Priest can talk more later. What will the It Couple have planned for the Grit Couple?

Kevin Owens then walks over to ask Priest something. Kevin is looking forward to their match tonight. Really? Yeah, no lie! He’s looking- Oh, right, because Kevin’s so honest. Yes, especially having a good, clean match. Good competition, show off some technical prowess. But also that side, that nutso, vicious side. That side shouldn’t come out. Kevin is just hoping for them having a good, clean match. Kevin also has an announcement to make, so see you then. Good talk. Kevin and his tie hurries off, but will Priest keep Damian from tearing into the Prizefighter?

Kevin heads to the ring!

The KO Show is back, and tonight’s guest is Seth Freakin’ Rollins! What will Kevin ask his new best buddy? We find out, after the break.

Raw returns and Kevin welcomes us to his show. He wishes he could say it’s good to be here in Tulsa, but that would be a vile lie because this place is brutal. Don’t get mad at him telling the truth! And another truth is that Kevin has a very special guest. He is a man Kevin is proud to call his best friend, and after this man beats Roman Reigns at the Royal Rumble like he has in a plethora of matches before, he will be called the Universal Champion. Please welcome Seth! FRRRRREAKIN’! ROLLINS~! Rollins makes his way out to the ring, fired up as always, but especially now after having evaded a Bloodline beatdown on SmackDown last Friday.

Rollins takes up a mic and Kevin lets Rollins decide if they sit or stand. Rollins wants to stand, so he and Kevin kick the chairs aside. Kevin thanks Rollins for accepting his invitation to be a guest. Kevin wants to tell Rollins that he admires Rollins so much. There is so much Kevin admires about Rollins. From the great suits, like this striped one. He looks like a million bucks! MAHVELOUS! And even more so, Kevin admires Rollins’ courage. Do people realize how much guts it took for Rollins to show up on SmackDown, into the lion’s den, get face to face with Roman, and berate him into realizing that “The Head of the Table” is only possible because Rollins set the table.

“Yes, yes, yes! Kev, you hit the nail on the head right there!” Friday got a little testy, but the truth is, Roman’s rattled. Roman’s nervous, and dare Rollins say, Roman is scared. He’s scared! You heard it here first! Roman took the low road taking shots at Rollins’ family, sending the Usos after him. But everyone saw that the Usos couldn’t get the job done. Rollins says Roman is playing checkers while Rollins is playing chess! If Roman keeps this up, winning at the Rumble will be like taking candy from a baby. A little baby Roman! And Rollins will turn the title from blue to red and bring the Universal Championship back to their show, Monday Night Raw!

That’s huge! When Rollins wins, he’s staying on Raw with Kevin! Yes, 100%! Incredible! Then that means Raw has the best champion! Raw wouldn’t need Lesnar or Lashley, they’d have Rollins! Kevin again hits the nail on the head. Get rid of Lesnar. Rollins has a match with Lashley tonight, they can get rid of Lashley tonight! Who knows? Kevin likes the sound of that. But he has something of his own to announce and it is “earth shattering.” It will change the face of the industry! Right here and now, Kevin is officially declaring for the Royal Rumble! Rollins says that IS earth shattering!

Kevin will win the Rumble, Rollins will beat Roman, and the WWE Universe will get the match they… well, not deserve. But they’ll get the biggest Mania main-event ever! SETH FREAKIN’ ROLLINS VS KEVIN FREAKIN’ OWENS! Rollins likes where Kevin’s head is at. But here comes Damian Priest! Rollins says this is his time and Kevin’s show! If Priest steps any closer, Kevin will kick his ass! Kevin wants Rollins to stop but Priest tells Rollins to shut up! They’re both delusional idiots! There is not one person on this planet that believes Rollins will win at the Rumble. And Kevin is just a liar, so he isn’t winning, either.

And if Kevin doesn’t want to see Damian, then don’t wake him up. Oh and by the way, Priest talked with Pearce and Sonya. Their match tonight? That starts NOW! Kevin is freaking out, but Rollins tries to encourage him. Will it not matter when the Archer of Infamy takes aim?

 

Veer Mahaan.

In the animal kingdom, the lion bides its time as it hunts its prey. Step by step, until it finally strikes, leaving only scraps for the hyenas. When will the Million Dollar Arm finally strike?

 

Damian Priest VS Kevin Owens!

Raw returns and the bell rings. They tie up, Kevin waistlocks, but Priest pries free to wrench to a wristlock. Kevin rolls, headlocks, but Priest uses a chinbar to push Kevin back and power out. Kevin rams Priest, but then Kevin apologizes, Things speed up, Priest runs Kevin over with a shoulder! Priest runs in at the corner, but Kevin puts him on the apron! Kevin elbows Priest away, but Priest ROUNDHOUSES back! Priest steps in but into a SHOTGUN! Kevin stomps Priest at the ropes, lets off as the ref counts, then drags Priest to center for a SENTON! Kevin wraps on a chinlock and leans on Priest but fans rally up.

Priest fights up, priest the hold open but Kevin CLUBS him on the back. Kevin CHOPS, whips, but Priest reverses. Kevin KCISK back, CHOPS again, and CHOPS! Priest snarls, but Kevin apologizes again. This is just good, clean wrestling! Priest cools off, but then he fires off fast hands! WHEEL KICK! Kevin goes to a corner, Priest runs in but Kevin bails out. Fans boo, Priest keeps cool, but then Priest goes out the side. Priest runs in around the way, leaps off the steps, into a SUPERKICK! Kevin gets back in the ring to refresh the count, then FROG SPLASHES off the apron! Kevin roars while Priest sputters! Kevin drags Priest up and in as Raw goes to break.

Raw returns again and Priest CLOBBERS Kevin! Fans fire up as Priest aims from a corner, and Priest throws haymakers! Priest fires off KICK after KICK, then a ROLLING ELBOW! Kevin rebounds, into a FLAPJACK! Priest runs at Kevin in the corner, for a big back elbow! Priest reels Kevin in, but Kevin wrenches out to ROCK Priest! Kevin whips, Priest rebounds to LARIAT! Priest gets Kevin up for the BROKEN ARROW! Cover, TWO! Priest is annoyed but he drags Kevin up. Priest ROCKS Kevin with a right, hoists him up top in the corner and ROCKS him again! Priest climbs up, but Kevin hits back!

Priest and Kevin brawl, Priest gets the edge. Priest brings Kevin up, but Kevin blocks the superplex! Kevin throws body shots, and even a headbutt! Kevin headbutts again, Priest falls down! Kevin adjusts, SWANTON BOMB! Cover, TWO!! Priest survives and Kevin thinks of what he has to do now. Kevin aims, kicks but no stunner! Kevin ducks the heel kick, tries gain, but Priest dragon sleepers! But Kevin slips free to pop Priest up, SIT-OUT POWERBOMB! Cover, TWO!! Priest survives again and Kevin is shocked! Fans rally up, Kevin aims, kicks, but Priest blocks to spin and ROUNDHOUSE! Kevin wobbles into a choke grip, SOUTH OF HEAVEN CHOKE SLAM! Cover, TWO!!

Priest is shocked that Kevin survives! Kevin rolls away to a corner but Priest follows. Priest throws hands, whips Kevin corner to corner, but Kevin falls, clutching his leg. The ref checks on Kevin, Kevin flounders up saying it’s cramping up. The ref wants a medic to check this, fans boo but Priest isn’t sure what to make of this. But then Kevin suckers him in for a STUNNER!! Cover, Kevin wins!

Winner: Kevin Owens, by pinfall

Priest was right about Kevin being a liar! But now, Kevin could also be a contender! Will Kevin add the US Championship to his Road to WrestleMania?

 

Backstage interview with Nikki A.S.H.

What is her plan heading into tonight’s match with former tag partner, Rhea Ripley? Nikki tells Sarah that this is no different than any other match. It is clear to Nikki now that she stands on her own, and she couldn’t feel any better. Rhea should be down and out, completely mortified after being proven the friend Nikki didn’t think she was. But Nikki, you were the one who attacked Rhea- Sarah, you need to get your facts straight! Rhea is the one who broke up the team. Rhea is the one who decided to take their friendship and flush it! She is the villain, not Nikki! And Nikki is the closest thing that the people of Tulsa will ever have to a real hero. She will be the People’s Hero.

And sometimes, heroes have to do things that regular people don’t understand. After tonight, Rhea will realize that she needs a superhero, whether she likes it or not. Nikki strikes her superhero pose and walks away, but will Rhea’s brutality smack some sense into her?

 

The Alpha Academy heads to the ring.

Pomp & Circumstance plays because today is Otis’ graduation! Will the NEW Raw Tag Team Champions be celebrating on top of their big title victory from last week?

Raw returns and Gable is at the podium. “Greetings and salutations my fellow colleagues and… Oh who am I kidding? I don’t have any colleagues here, considering I’m an Olympian with a Master’s Degree that did it with an immaculate 4.0 GPA! Thank you! Don’t do that. Don’t boo education. That’s gross, everybody.” But it makes sense, since the odds of anyone in Oklahoma having a Master’s, let alone graduating high school, are slim to none! Now shoosh! Tonight is about celebrating. Not just an institution but an individual. Gable could go on and on about himself, because his list is long.

But tonight is about a man who overcame the odds. An absolute tree trunk in the ring and a great student in the classroom. Gable’s prized pupil, his protégé, his number one guy, OTIS! Gable’s so proud. Last week, Otis applied the lessons and passed his final exam by decimating the moronic RKBRO and claimed the Academy’s rightful spot as tag team champions! So tonight, it is Gable’s honor and pleasure- Fans chant with “RKBRO! RKBRO!” They’re trying to have a ceremony for Otis! Gable presents to Otis, who has no last name anymore, the highest graduating honors from the Alpha Academy! The music plays again as they hug it out.

Gable says Otis has the floor. Look at that face! Otis thanks Chad, and says Gable has helped him reach his full potential. But now he has a warning: expect pure carnage for anyone who messes with the titles! They ain’t stopping, and they ain’t ever gonna stop! But here comes Matt Riddle! The Bro is in his own graduation gown, but it has mismatched sleeves… Riddle asks, “What’s up, bros? Big O, you’re looking pretty, pretty tight. And you guys don’t even wanna know what I had to get this graduation gown on time.” But when he got invited to this ceremony, he knew he had to make a very special speech.

Riddle brings out his speech, written on a napkin from this morning’s breakfast buffet. “Fellow graduates and Tulsinians. IT felt like just last week, Randy and I were the WWE Raw Tag Team Champions. We were livin’ on the edge, drivin’ with the top down, lettin’ the wind blow through our hair. We were just a couple o’ young, wild stallions runnin’ free. But today is graduation day. And our lives will change forever. Randy would always say, ‘Life comes at ya pretty fast.'” Gable stops him there, he has no idea what he’s going on about. Riddle was NOT invited to this. And Oklahoma can’t afford to lose another braincell, so just be on your way.

Riddle has “Gablestiltskin” take it easy. Riddle wants to say how proud he is of them. Them and their astronomical necks. See? He can use big words, too, Chad! Gable says Riddle is an idiot. He already ruined Otis’ night, so get to the point. RKBRO wants a rematch? Problem is, Riddle probably can’t even define the word rematch. Riddle so can! A rematch is… uh… when you have to light something up twice! Like a candle! But hey, a rematch sounds like a pretty sick idea. Fans wanna see it! Gable knew it. No wonder Orton left Riddle high and dry. Where even is he? Riddle unzips his gown to show off his “Hey Raaaandy” shirt.

Gable and Otis will give them a rematch, under one condition: they have to prove their mental aptitude in an Alpha Academy Academic Challenge! Otis suddenly looks worried. TO spell it out, it’s Riddle & Randy VS the Academy to prove the smarter team! Because we already saw who the physically dominant team is! Whoa, an academic challenge? Like Billy Madison? Or more like Wheel of Fortune? Riddle loves spinning that wheel, and maybe he and Otis could run in a giant hamster wheel. Gable kinda looks like a jacked hamster, but with three times the brains. Otis is furious and throws off his gown! Riddle wants Otis to back it up and cool off.

Otis storms up the ramp, barking about this being his night! But Orton gets in the ring to RKO Gable!! And then Riddle trips up Otis on the apron! RKBRO got one over on the Academy, and now Orton wears one of the red graduation gowns! Orton gets the mic to then tell the Academy, “We accept!” Will Riddle & Orton get PhDs in kicking the Academy’s asses?

 

Austin Theory visits Vince McMahon.

Theory thanks Vince for the rematch with Finn Balor. But uh, what’s Vince watching on his TV? It was the previous match, where Finn won. Oh… Theory knows he lost, but then he beat the hell outta Finn and nearly ended his career. In fact, it was like a half victory. No such thing. So tonight, Theory needs to beat Finn and beat him up. If Theory doesn’t, Vince will get someone to drag Theory to this office and Vince will beat Theory up! Smash him all over, and by the time he’s finished, it’ll just be blood, snot and broken teeth. Then Vince will take a selfie with that. And send it to Mama Theory! Oh… Theory has been warned, will he make good on this rematch?

 

WWE honors Martin Luther King Jr.

“Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. That all men would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” That dream of MLK’s, where we judge not by the color of skin but by character, is still alive. We will all reach the Promised Land together.

 

Finn Balor VS Austin Theory!

Raw returns and Theory makes his entrance. The Prince is back after being out a month, will he make Theory pay for every minute he’s missed? The bell rings, they circle and tie up, and Theory puts Finn on ropes. The ref counts, Theory lets off but Finn blocks the cheap shot to kick and headlock! Finn thrashes to grind Theory down, Theory powers out but Finn ducks and dodges, only for Theory to CLOBBER him with an elbow! Theory drags Finn out of the ring to smack off the apron! And then whip him into barriers! Theory goes into the ring and the ring count climbs. Finn stands but Theory goes out after him.

Theory whips, Finn reverses, and Theory hits barriers! Finn then hits a SLINGBLADE! Theory writhes, the count is rising, and Raw goes to break.

Raw returns and Finn rallies, trips and DOUBLE STOMPS Theory down! Theory goes to a corner, Finn runs in and CHOPS! Finn whips Theory corner to corner, Theory reverse but Finn reverses back, ELBOW DROP DDT! Cover, TWO! Finn snarls, Theory crawl to ropes and Finn KICKS him out of the ring! Finn drags Theory up but Theory HOTSHOTS! Theory somersaults in, but into a SLINGBLADE! Finn then runs, into a LARIAT from Theory! Theory hauls Finn up to FLAPJACK HOTSHOT! Fireman’s carry, A T- NO! Finn makes it a roll up, TWO! Theory and Finn get up, and Finn goes to the apron. Finn shoulders into Theory, GAMANGIRIS, then climbs up!

But Theory avoids the Coup De Grace to somersault SHOTGUN! Fireman’s carry, A T L!! Cover, Theory wins!

Winner: Austin Theory, by pinfall

Theory saves himself from Vince’s wrath, and he gets his victory selfie. But to make good on what Vince told him, Theory fires off fists! Theory then drags Finn up, fireman’s carries again, for another A T L! Theory tells Finn to expect the unexpected. But will Finn find a way to teach Theory and Mr. McMahon respect for The Prince?

 

Nikki A.S.H. VS Rhea Ripley!

Before the match, Rhea is interviewed backstage. How does she respond to Nikki saying it was Rhea who ruined the relationship? Rhea says she never intended for this to hurt their friendship. But Nikki made up her mind. Rhea isn’t one to forgive very easily, so what kind of hero attacks a friend? If Rhea’s the villain here, than Nikki’s more delirious than Rhea thought. It’s time to remind everyone who Rhea Ripley is. Is Nikki in for a Nightmare tonight?

Raw returns and Nikki makes her entrance, but then so do Queen Zelina Vega and Carmella. Mella says, “Hear ye, hear ye, Tulsa. The Most Beautiful Woman in All of WWE and Your Queen have arrived to tell everyone in this dusty arena that everything we predicted about Nikki A.S.H. has come true.” Zelina’s word is absolute, and therefore she is correct by default. Not only is she a beloved queen, but also a fairy godmother. Rhea would never have been rid of Nikki without their little push. Rhea should be thanking them! Because they’ve been telling Rhea for weeks that if she stuck with an Almost Superhero, she’d never be nothing more than an almost threat.

But seems things are too late. Rhea doesn’t look like anything more than a low class loser. Without Nikki as her security blanket, does Rhea have what it takes? As Zelina’s said, you’re either the most powerful women in the room, or you’re nothing. Zelina is queen, but Rhea will be standing there, covered in trash, looking for someone to leech off of. Rhea doesn’t have the guts to be champion all on her own. Rhea tells them to bring it, then, but Nikki goes after Rhea! The ref wants Nikki to let off, but Nikki keeps hammering Rhea down! Rhea hits back but Nikki throws Rhea down! Nikki is seething, and then she drags Rhea up. Rhea kicks Nikki away but Nikki throws her out!

Nikki WRECKS Rhea with a dropkick, then goes out to RAM her into steel steps! The Almost Superhero leaves Rhea down, but the match is called off. Will Rhea get right? Or will she get revenge?

 

Dana Brooke and Reggie regroup backstage.

What did they talk about? Staying low and staying mobile. That’s right! Reggie is faster, stronger and amazing! Use Omos’ size against him, tire him out, and go for the legs. Meanwhile, R-Truth, Akira Tozawa, Tamina, and a referee are watching while eating popcorn. Dana says Reggie can be vicious and ruthless while also super athletic. Reggie says, “Who am I kidding?” He ran into Omos full speed and bounced off him! Dana says Reggie is the most capable man she knows. Just stay away from him. But even Dana looks worried. Truth says Dana must really hate Reggie. She just told him to get got! Will Reggie even survive his run-in with Omos?

Reggie w/ Dana Brooke VS Omos!

Raw returns and Reggie makes his entrance. Dana is cheering him on, but she still looks very worried. Omos points out the clear height difference, and then he roars! Even that scares Reggie! But then here come the 24/7 Championship hunters! Dana runs into the ring, scoots under Omos and out the other side. Omos catches Tozawa, TOSSES him out, then CLOBBERS Truth! Tamina stares Omos down and Reggie climbs the corner. Tamina goes around Omos, the bell rings, and Reggie leaps! Into Omos’ arms! Omos uses both hands for the MOUNTAIN TOSS! Omos says it’s that easy. Cover, Omos wins.

Winner: Omos, by pinfall

Omos didn’t break a sweat with that one! Will the colossus of Raw continue to dominate until he’s on top of the world?

 

Maryse heads to the ring!

As her note said, she is here to talk with Beth face-to-face. But will that all this be? Or do Miz & Mrs. have a plan for the Glamazon? We find out, after the break.

Raw returns and Maryse has a mic to say, “Bonsoir (good evening), Tulsa.” She assures us The Miz couldn’t make it. He has a very big mouth and likes to agree to things without asking her first, so tonight, she is cleaning up his mess. She then asks Beth to come out alone so they can do this right. Woman to woman, wife to wife and mother to mother, Maryse wants to talk. Beth makes her entrance, but Edge still follows her out. Maryse wants Edge to wait on the ramp until they’ve had this conversation. There aren’t many ways to put this, but the match at the Rumble, it has to be canceled. Uh, okay. This oughta be good, so Beth is all ears.

Maryse says she doesn’t want it, surely Beth doesn’t want it, and the fans don’t want it! Fans boo, they DO want it. Maryse is trying to have a heartfelt moment, guys. Really? Really? Really? Maryse is sure sounding like Miz here… Maryse says she has the mic, so she can be louder than everyone here. It doesn’t matter what you think! Now she’s The Rock? But anyway, Maryse wants Beth to listen. They’re from the same generation in WWE. They fought together. Remember those two minute matches? Fans chant, “You Suck!” but Maryse asks if they’re done.

But Beth, c’mon. They fought together and made the Women’s Division what it is today! They’re great at what they do! Just look at them! Women nowadays main event WrestleMania thanks to these two! So if anything, Maryse thinks that they should be on the same team. They should be a unit! Friends! Even their daughters can be friends! They can have play dates, dinners, or even just a coffee. Beth wants Maryse to know that she speaks for everyone here when she says, “Just shut up!” Seriously? BFF’s? Playdates? Is anyone buying this? NOPE! So that means Maryse takes acting lessons from The Miz.

Beth boils it down to a simple answer: the match is NOT off. Beth is NOT missing the chance to tag team with her husband for the first time ever. And she is NOT missing the chance to Glam Slam Maryse’s ass through the canvas! In fact, why not give the fans a preview? Beth storms up to the ring but Maryse stays put. Wait, Miz attacks Edge at the ramp! But Edge DECKS Miz! Maryse really was lying about Miz being at home! But then Maryse CLOBBERS Beth with her purse! What’s in that bag?! Maryse and Miz decide to show us: it was a BRICK! A literal BRICK! Maryse tosses her hair back and celebrates with The Miz. But will Edge and Beth only look to break The It Couple for that one?

 

The Street Profits are fired up backstage!

Angelo Dawkins & Montez Ford have a dream! The dream is that they have a plan and will execute it and win! The best part is, they do it in Tulsa, Oklahoma~! YESSIR! All the bodies in the ring, it’ll be like a mini Rumble. Which is great cuz the Profits were the first to declare for this year’s Rumble! Their first one, tossin’ bodies! But will Ford throw Dawkins? Rey Mysterio & Dom walk over to say not to worry. They’re a team tonight, and they’ll also be in the Rumble. Rey has to get this off his chest: Los Mysterios will outlast 28 other men in the Rumble. And then, not only will they throw those guys out, they’ll take the Mysterio name back to the Mania main event!

Okay, all due respect, that’s only if the Profits don’t make it there first. Because the Profits are up! And WE WANT THE SMOKE! Will these four burn it down to then light it up on the Road to WrestleMania?

8 Man Tag: The Street Profits & The Mysterios VS Apollo Crews, Commander Azeez & The Dirty Dawgs!

Raw returns and the Dawgs make their entrance. Then the Pride of Nigeria and his right hand man make their entrance. Teams sort out, Dolph Ziggler starts against Dom. They tie up, Dom waistlocks but Ziggler elbows free. Ziggler talks trash, runs, but Dom follows to RANA! Dom runs at Ziggler in the corner but Ziggler CLOBBERS Dom! Tag to Robert Roode and he stomps Dom. Roode drags Dom up, suplexes, but Dom knees free! Dom kicks low, tags Rey, and Rey gets a boost to RANA! Rey whips, Roode reverses but Rey dodges and tilt-o-whirl headscissors! Rey runs in but Roode puts him on the apron. Rey DECKS Roode, climbs, and leaps, but the rana is blocked

Roode brings Rey up, but Rey RANAS Roode out of the ring! Ziggler and Dom get in, Dom whips but Ziggler throws Dom up and out! Ford and Dawkins DROPKCIK Ziggler out! All eight men are on the outside now and shouting, but the ref keeps the peace while Raw goes to break!

Raw returns, Roode tags Ziggler and the Dawgs double whip Rey to double elbow him down. Then the Dawgs hit Rey’s corner to knock everyone down! Fans boo but Ziggler drags Rey over to tag Apollo. Apollo hits a STANDING MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO! Ziggler is upset on Apollo’s behalf, but Apollo decides he’ll finish it now. Apollo gets Rey up, trophy lifts, but Rey fights free to a DDT! Both men are down and fans fire up! Rey crawls, Dawks is back! Hot tag to the Curse of Greatness! And he rallies on everyone! He hurdles Apollo to hit a FLYING BACK ELBOW! Roode runs into an EXPLODER! Ziggler runs into an EXPLODER!

Dawkins gives Apollo a CYCLONE SPLASH, then the SILENCER! But Azeez gets in to break the cover! Ford returns to ENZIGURI Azeez out! The Dawgs TOSS Ford out! But the Mysterios dropkick the Dawgs onto the ropes! STEREO 619’s! Dom goes up and out to LEAP at Azeez! But Azeez catches him! Rey jumps to add on, the Mysterios take out Azeez! But Apollo rolls Dawkins up! TWO, and pop-up for SKY HIGH! Tag to Ford, he’s up top! FROM THE HEAVENS!! Cover, the Profits & Mysterios win!

Winners: The Street Profits & The Mysterios, by pinfall

Ford was five-star again with that splash, but then the Mysterios decide to dump the Profits out! Rey says that’s nothing personal, just a sample of the Rumble. And then he dumps Dom out! The son’s got a lot to learn still. But will Dom & Rey look to be in that final handful at the Rumble to put their name back on the WrestleMania marquee?

 

WWE looks at the parallels of Lashley and Lesnar.

“Forge: to form by heating and hammering; to beat into shape.” Great warriors are born at the forge, shaped by the heat of the fire and tried in the brutality of combat. This is the beginning of two such warriors. “The great plains often invoke idyllic dreams of an unending cascades of crops and green pastures. But in winter, these dreams are overtaken by the harsh reality of desolation and decay. It is here that the heart of a Beast was forged, and a Conqueror was born.” Brock Lesnar is a two-time NCAA All American with over 100 victories, and the NCAA Division I Heavyweight Champion. And just five months after his WWE debut, The Next Big Thing was WWE Champion.

After ravaging every challenger in the WWE, the Beast would go to the UFC, and in just three fights, he’d reign supreme as the UFC Heavyweight Champion. Then upon returning to the WWE, Lesnar’s path of devastation continued. He took 16-time WWE Champion John Cena to Suplex City, ended The Undertaker’s WrestleMania undefeated streak, and cemented his dominance as a three-time Universal and six-time World Champion. He is a Beast without limits, without remorse, and without fear.

“Discipline. Restraint. Control. It is from these fires that the All Mighty was forged. Son of a US Army drill sergeant, Bobby Lashley learned at an early age that only by rigorously harnessing his natural ability that he would the greatness that he sought.” A three-time NAIA wrestling champion, Lashley would follow his father’s footsteps into the Army, and he honed his craft onto his way to winning gold in the Armed Forces Championship. Lashley would emerge in WWE as a peak physical specimen, unleashing a torrent of physical power and ferocity. But while he won gold, Lashley couldn’t quite find that next level.

A sojourn into MMA ignited the fires and Lashley had a 15-2 record. Then he’d return to the WWE and he would unleash havoc on opponent after opponent with his arsenal of high impact moves, headlined by the Hurt Lock full nelson. He would become United States Champion, Intercontinental Champion, and ultimately, WWE World Champion. Now, Lashley is ready for the one challenge that eluded him. For 20 years, Lashley believes Lesnar was ducking him. But Lesnar is confident that if they’d met before, Lesnar would’ve already beaten him. But the Royal Rumble will see the champion Beast collide with an All Mighty challenger.

These paths have finally crossed. Two warriors, forged in flame, battle and gold, fight for the ultimate prize. Only one emerges THE WWE World Champion. Will the ring even stay standing as these wage war?

 

The Miz & Maryse are heading out.

Kevin Patrick stops them to ask about that vicious attack. Miz says it took ONE SHOT to take down the Glamazon! Now Beth needs medical attention! Now the Grit Couple is the SH- Maryse stops Miz there. The girls are watching at home. Oh, right. Daddy loves ya, girls! And Miz loves Mommy. He is the best husband ever, because he remembered that Maryse’s birthday is next week! So before saying bonny nut- No, no, it’s bonne nuit. The T is silent. Right, bonne nuit to the Grit Couple, Miz is going to throw the most expensive, extravagant and amazing birthday party that anyone has ever seen, because Miz loves Maryse.

Nothing, especially not Edge & Beth, is stronger than their love. These two make-out right in front of us… But will announcing the birthday party here come back to bite the It Couple?

 

Alexa Bliss has another therapy session.

She and her therapist sit quietly a moment before he welcomes her back. He’s happy to say that there are less breakable things here in the office. She isn’t sure about that. But these sessions will continue. He will not tolerate a repeat of last week, though. He does apologize for showing her such a sensitive subject, but he had to know where she stood psychological. He promises her that she will be on the road to recovery. Neat. Now, let’s do word association. Okay, sure. How does she feel about the word, “Trust.” “Lily.” Friend? Lily. Home? Lily. Doll… Lily. Imaginary. Alexa gets up out of her seat and glares at him. Okay, time’s up.

The doc bolts but Alexa cools off. She sits back down, looks around the room, but stays quiet. Will Alexa ever get over her twistedly tragic past?

 

Bobby Lashley w/ MVP VS Seth Rollins!

The Rocky Mountain Machine is ready to wreck everything, including Brock Lesnar. Meanwhile, The Visionary is preparing to repeat history and defeat Roman Reigns once again. But who will have some major momentum on their side going towards those titanic title matches? The main event of top championship challengers begins after the break!

Raw returns and Rollins makes his entrance. The bell rings and Lashley glares while Rollins smirks. The two circle, fans rally up, and the two tie up. Rollins headlocks, Lashley powers up to power out, but Rollins duck sand dodges. Lashley hurdles then runs Rollins over! Fans cheer as Lashley mocks Rollins’ pose. The two reset, circle and tie up again. Rollins waistlocks, Lashley uses ropes to buck Rollins away, but Rollins hurdles and drops to then go perpendicular, SLINGBLADE! Rollins kicks, reels Lashley in, but Lashley back drops free! Lashley stalks Rollins, but Rollins fights the full nelson! Rollins drops to KICK Lashley, then he dumps Lashley out!

Rollins builds speed to DIVE! Direct hit but Lashley stays up! Rollins goes back in, builds speed again, DIVES, but into a clinch! OVERHEAD Belly2Belly! Lashley roars and Rollins flounders while Raw goes to break.

Raw returns again and Rollins has Lashley down now! Rollins drags Lashley to a corner to SLAM a leg against the post! Rollins SLAMS the leg again, talks trash to MVP, then gets in as the ring count reaches 5 of 10. Rollins drags Lashley up, puts the bad leg in the ropes, pulls until the ref counts, then dropkicks the leg! Lashley falls, Rollins drags him to center and steps through to drop a leg on the knee! Lashley snarls and fans rally up. MVP coaches Lashley, but Rollins drops another leg on the bad knee! And then another! Rollins has the toehold, ties up the legs, but Lashley fights, only for Rollins to still get the Indian Deathlock!

Rollins keeps Lashley’s hands away while Lashley endures the hold. Rollins SLAPS Lashley in the side, but Lashley pulls hair! The ref reprimands, Lashley lets go but he punches Rollins! Rollins lets the legs free, but then he gets the bad one for a DRAGON SCREW! And into a HALF CRAB! Lashley endures, even as Rollins sits deep! Lashley powers up, fans rally up, and Lashley turns, only for Rollins to stomp the leg! Rollins has the Half Crab again! MVP coaches Lashley more but Rollins talks trash on “Bob.” Lashley fights up, turns things over, and he boots Rollins away! Rollins falls out of the ring but he’s right back in! Lashley avoids the stomp for a COMPLETE SHOT!

MVP says that’s the All Mighty Lashley he knows! Lashley grits his teeth and pushes up, just as Rollins also sits up. Rollins turns around into an OVERHEAD Belly2Belly! And then another! Lashley runs in at the corner, to RAM into Rollins! Lashley turns Rollins around, NECKBREAKER! Lashley fires up and Tulsa fires up with him! Lashley gets Rollins up, suplexes, but Rollins fights free! Lashley kicks low to gut wrench, DOMINATOR! Cover, TWO!! Rollins survives but MVP coaches Lashley to keep going. Lashley aims from a corner, Rollins rises, Lashley runs in, into a KNEE! Rollins hits a ROLLING ELBOW! Then runs, but into a scoop!

Rollins slips out, shoves Lashley into buckles, then kicks low! Rollins underhooks the arms, PEDIGREE!! Cover, TWO!?! Lashley survives but Rollins is too tired to be shocked! Fans rally behind Lashley but Rollins stands. Rollins goes to a corner, climbs up top, but Lashley gets him with a choke grip! Lashley climbs up, but Rollins fights with elbows! But Lashley clinches, for a SUPER BELLY2BELLY!! Rollins goes flying to the other side of the ring! Lashley gets back to a corner but the Hurt Business go after him!!

Winner: Bobby Lashley, by disqualification

Cedric Alexander & Shelton Benjamin mug Lashley but Lashley fights back! That’s still 2v1, and they POST him! Alexander & Benjamin shout that he’s brought this upon himself, and then the POST Lashley again! They glare at MVP but then drag Lashley back up. But Lashley DOUBLE SUPLEXES them instead! COMPLETE SHOT for Benjamin! Fireman’s carry and the POST for Alexander! Lashley SPEARS Benjamin through barriers! Rollins is shocked at seeing the carnage, but the USOS run out from the crowd! Rollins turns around, into DOUBLE SUPERKICKS! Jimmy & Jey make up for missing the target on SmackDown!

Rollins lost the match and then got got! Will he stand a chance of dethroning the Head of the Table if the Usos can get him on his show? As for Lashley, will he be able to go for the gold if he has his former henchmen coming after him?


My Thoughts:

This was a decent episode, but with really glaring low points. Does Vince just hate Women’s Wrestling again? Why is it that the matches tonight were basically filler to move the story along? Nikki VS Rhea being No Contest was whatever since it at least went with story. But that opening tag match had Becky, Piper, Bianca and Liv, all of which are basically the stars of the Raw Women’s Division. Yet Vince couldn’t be bothered to give that match more than a bathroom break amount of time! I suppose because it was Piper ending it all very quickly, we’re supposed to think Piper is that great, but honestly it just hurt all four women. If Bianca was taken out by just a corner splash, how is she to win the Rumble?

Finn VS Theory 2 was also way too short. I get there was a commercial break in the middle but that just makes it worse. Theory winning was clean also a shame, and not because of Vince’s weird threat to him. I get that Theory needed to win to make a feud out of this, but why not dirty it up a little? When is Finn going to get a chance to comment on how Theory is Vince’s pet project and all that? This whole thing is just hurting my brain. And only a little less than the Veer Mahaan videos coming back. He better show up in the Rumble. And this week’s Alexa therapy session was filler. It was just her associating everything with Lily but not even in a more compelling way than last week’s “triggered Alexa” vignette.

We got a good 8 Man Tag but it was also on the short side. It was pretty standard Rumble season stuff for Rey & Dom to dump the Profits out, but Rey dumping Dom was a bit of a surprise. Maybe Dom will do the same during the Rumble on Rey? I did appreciate them weaving three backstage segments into one, going from Reggie wanting advice from Edge but basically striking out, and then Edge talking with Priest and then Priest talking with Kevin. If Dana still has the 24/7 title come the Women’s Rumble, can that title end up hot potato’d around to end up on someone from SmackDown? Or does Fox just hate that title?

Omos of course destroyed Reggie, but I almost thought he was going to somehow end up 24/7 champion. That’d probably put the end to the title, though, because who would even try to take it from him? Kevin had a very good match with Priest, and his win definitely puts him in line for the US Championship, but who knows if Kevin will even go for it with him so closely connected to Rollins in their stories. And we got a good promo segment out of Maryse and Beth. But Maryse bringing up the Diva Era short matches and yet we got a short women’s match here, the irony clearly goes over Vince’s thick head. That brick in the purse, though. And telegraphing the birthday stuff for next week, Maryse’s cake is definitely going into someone’s face.

The Alpha Academy graduation was a pretty good segment. I am sure Riddle was referencing something but I can’t place it. I can’t believe they’re kayfabing that Otis never had the last name “Dozovic.” That’s taking Vince’s love of editing names to a new, dumber level. But I loved the face Otis made when Gable said they were going to have a tag team academic challenge. He’s going to end up the weak link for his team since this graduation was based on his in-ring skills. The Lesnar Lashley vignette was well made, but a rather melodramatic theme in the narration. After the string of short matches, it just felt like WWE trying too hard to be cinematic and not enough about action.

Lashley VS Rollins was great stuff, until the Hurt Business “ruined” things. It just keeps reminding us of how flippant they’ve been with that faction’s story. They work together against Goldberg but then not together against Lesnar, and now the Hurt Business is just being thrown at Lashley in an attempt to build Lashley as brutal and dominant without it being in the matches. The Usos getting the drop on Rollins was pretty good, though, since that carries over from SmackDown. If they’d let it just be the Usos trying to mess with Rollins, I think things would’ve felt a bit better.

My Score: 8/10


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AEW Coverage

Mitchell’s AEW Dark: Elevation Results & Report! (1/17/22)

Raleigh gets Elevated!

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AEW Elevation Coverage

A lucky seven for Elevation!

AEW continues in Raleigh and has a strong seven for Elevation! Jay Lethal is keeping himself sharp for what could be an FTW Championship showdown!

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Matt Sydal & Lee Moriarty VS JR Miller & Marcus Kross; Sydal & Moriarty wins.
  • Tay Conti VS Ameera; Conti wins.
  • Gunn Club VS JB Cole & T.I.M; Gunn Club wins.
  • Frankie Kazarian VS Labron Kozone; Kaz wins.
  • Ruby Soho VS Kenzie Page; Soho wins.
  • Private Party VS Chase Emory & Patrick Scott; Private Party wins.
  • Jay Lethal VS Alexander Moss; Lethal wins.

QUICK NOTES

Pretty clear cut stuff here, but I like that we’re seeing Sydal & Moriarty in tag action again. Kenzie Page is back in AEW and she’ll give Ruby Soho a good match. Good to see Kaz back in action, they kinda let the ball drop on his Elite Hunter story but maybe he can build himself up towards the TNT Championship. And I have a feeling in Gunn Club’s match, fans will troll Austin & Colten as “Ass Boys” again and that could come close to costing them.


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