Mitchell’s WWE Raw Results & Report! (10/18/21)
One more stop before Crown Jewel!
This could be the wildEST Raw in a long time!
Bianca Belair goes after Charlotte Flair’s Raw Women’s Championship, RKBRO takes on The Street Profits, and two tournament semifinals, all on one night!
- King of the Ring Semifinals: Jinder Mahal w/ Veer & Shanky VS Xavier Woods w/ Kofi Kingston; Woods wins and advances to Crown Jewel.
- Austin Theory VS R-Truth; changed to…
- Austin Theory VS Jeff Hardy; Theory wins.
- Drew McIntyre & Big E VS The Dirty Dawgs; McIntyre & Big E win.
- Mansoor VS Cedric Alexander w/ Shelton Benjamin; Mansoor wins.
- RKBRO VS The Street Profits; RKBRO wins, by disqualification.
- Queen’s Crown Semifinals: Shayna Baszler VS “Doudrop” Piper Niven; Piper wins and advances to Crown Jewel.
- Finn Balor VS Mace; Balor wins.
- Raw Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair VS Bianca Belair; Bianca wins by disqualification, Charlotte retains the title.
PLAY BY PLAY
Charlotte Flair heads to the ring!
Before putting her title on the line, the Raw Women’s Champion opens the show for her last Raw before moving back to SmackDown! Sacramento is a bit torn about The Queen as she gets the mic. She asks where are the balloons and champagne, and why isn’t the roster out here for farewell hugs? Where are her “Thank You, Charlotte” chants? This is her last night on Raw before she is officially drafted to SmackDown, and she has to defend her title against Bianca Belair? A rookie? “Some flash in the pan?” No, seriously, this is crap! Charlotte really thinks there’s a conspiracy here. Number one, Bianca isn’t officially on Raw yet, and then she has another title opportunity at Crown Jewel! And people say Charlotte is entitled?
All Charlotte wants is a ceremony. She hears fans chanting, “You Suck!” and she tells them to sit down, hush and listen. Charlotte uses the “What?” on the fans, then says she just wanted a fitted farewell for the most decorated woman in sports entertainment history! She finds it convenient that Bianca gets this match just before the switch. Talk about favoritism! Bianca couldn’t win two weeks ago, she needs to get her ass to the back of the line! You can’t beat this opportunity! Not this time, not any time! And tonight, Bianca learns how far she still has to go. Bianca may have beaten Bayley and Sasha, but Charlotte is the mountain she can’t climb!
And save the EST stuff for someone who isn’t the GOAT! But speaking of Bianca, here she comes! Fans cheer for the EST as she tells Charlotte, “A conspiracy?” No, this isn’t that. This is just desserts. The way Bianca sees it, she’s done nothing but prove she belongs. She deserves this rematch! And Charlotte wants to bring up two weeks ago? Bianca had Charlotte beat until she got saved by Big Time Becks. But Bianca can’t even believe Charlotte talking like this! She’s throwing a tantrum all for defending her title and leaving Raw. “Baby, it’s okay.” Bianca says she is the EST, and no matter what brand she’s one, she knows she’s the one to watch because she always shines.
Lucky for Charlotte, after tonight, Bianca won’t be Charlotte’s probably because Charlotte no longer goes here. Charlotte’s literally begging for a farewell, so take your time to say good-bye to the title. Bianca has some advice: After Charlotte takes the L, she can dust herself off and hold her head up high. This life brings trials and tribulations, but Charlotte can use that to make her stronger, rougher, tougher and maybe even kinder. Try that one. Bianca’s gonna take the title to Crown Jewel and return to Raw with a belt on each arm! “Now how’s that for a rookie, Charlotte?” Charlotte sucker punches Bianca! The heels come off, but Bianca dodges the boot to torture rack!
Charlotte scrambles away and to the apron but Bianca handspring heel kicks her down! Charlotte is flustered and frustrated, is this just the beginning of a bad night good-bye?
Backstage interview with the New Day.
Kevin Patrick asks Woods about this big opportunity. This is of the utmost importance, Sir Kevin. Woods will be one step behind some of the greatest King of the Ring winners ever! From King Mable to King Ken Shamrock to King BOOKAH! When Woods wins, he’ll be one step closer to fulfilling his destiny. Kofi says we all know how important this is, so that’s why Kofi will watch his back. No repeats of last week where Veer & Shanky get in the way. Martin Luther King had a dream but Woods’ dream is to be a king! All about that crown~!
Woods makes a royal decree here in the “castle” of the Sacramento Kings! And that is that this Thursday, Woods will sit on the crown as King Xavier, first of his name. “HAIL! KING WOODS!” But will the Modern Day Maharaja leave Woods on the outside looking in? We find out, after the break!
King of the Ring Semifinals: Jinder Mahal w/ Veer & Shanky VS Xavier Woods w/ Kofi Kingston!
Raw returns and Jinder makes his entrance, with his minions by his side. The bell rings and Mahal circles with Woods. They tie up, Woods waistlocks but Mahal throws Woods off. Mahal gloats but Woods keeps cool as he circles with Mahal again. They tie up, Mahal powers Woods back but Woods turns things around to have Mahal in the corner. The two get scrappy and the ref has them back off. The two go again, Mahal kicks low and shoves Woods to ropes. Woods boots back, Mahal elbows but Woods drop toeholds Mahal onto ropes! Woods runs to dropkick Mahal in the back! Woods CHOPS and throws hands in the corner, then climbs up. Mahal slips out and gets away.
Woods pursues, throwing haymakers and CHOPS! Woods climbs up another corner now and rains down rights on Mahal. Mahal stops that at 4, runs and runs Woods over with a shoulder! Mahal hits a headlock takeover as his henchmen applaud. Woods endures, fights up, throws body shots and then forearms. Woods runs but Mahal reels him in. Woods breaks free to then ENZIGURI! Woods runs but Mahal scoops, Woods tilt-o-whirls out to a RUSSIAN LEG SWEEP! Fans fire up as Woods runs, slides and basement dropkicks! Cover, TWO! Woods keeps cool as he headlocks, but Mahal powers up to a BIG back suplex!
Mahal stomps Woods, drags him up and CLUBS him down. Mahal JAMS his knee into Woods’ back, then brings him up for a headlock. Woods throws body shots as fans rally but Mahal knees low. Mahal scoops, Woods slips off and rolls him up, TWO! Mahal kicks low again, whips Woods to a corner, but Woods goes up and over to sunset flip! TWO! Mahal runs in but is sent into buckles! Woods runs in but is TOSSED out, and he SMACKS off the steps! Shanky & Veer cheer while Mahal soaks up the heat, and Raw goes to break.
Raw returns again and Mahal clamps onto Woods’s arm, but Woods fights up to a JAWBREAKER! Woods goes to the apron, Mahal drags him up by his hair, and the ref reprimands. Mahal ROCKS Woods with a right, then another! Woods holds onto the rope and he hits back! Woods shoulders in, steps in, but Mahal fireman’s carries to a GUT BUSTER DROP! Cover, TWO! Woods is still in this and Kofi coaches him up. Mahal fires up as he watches Woods rise. Mahal wraps Woods up in the clutch but Woods resists the lift! Woods clubs the arm, throws hands on Mahal, but Mahal scoops for a SIDEWALK SLAM!
Mahal paces and soaks up the heat as he runs, but Woods avoids the knee drop! SUPERKICK! Woods WRECKS Shanky with a dropkick, then goes up the corner! Woods leaps, but into a KALLAS!! Deja vu from last week! Cover, ROPEBREAK!! Woods saves himself and Mahal is furious! Mahal drags Woods up, brings him up and puts him on the top rope. Mahal climbs up behind Woods, Woods fights with elbows and even headbutts! Mahal falls, Woods adjusts, tightrope walk and LIMIT BREAKER ELBOW!! Cover, Woods wins!!
Winner: Xavier Woods, by pinfall (advances to Crown Jewel)
Woods punches his ticket to the finals! He and Kofi go to the throne, and Kofi puts the cape on Woods. Kofi hands the scepter to Woods and Woods says these will be his! Woods holds the scepter to the sky, will Woods truly become King of the Ring when he’s facing The Prince?
Backstage interview with Austin Theory.
What did it mean to him to defeat a former WWE World Champion and one that he looked up to? Yes, he did look up to Jeff Hardy, but then he was looking down at him after he won. Wait, wait, the 24/7 Championship chase comes through! Theory has to duck as Reggie jumps off a road case! Is this serious? Drake Maverick and team go down a hall, but Reggie comes back around, only for R-Truth to get him! Truth outsmarted Reggie, but Theory breaks up his chance to pin the champ! Theory has had enough of this! “Do you know who I am?!” Truth has a theory that Theory is a theorisist. A what?
Truth wants Theory to hold on. This anger and frustration, he wants to take it out in the ring, huh? Oh yeah! In that case, Truth accepts the challenge. On one condition: Theory gets permission from mommy to stay up late! GOTTEE~! Well management made this match, and it’s happening next!
Austin Theory VS R-Truth!
Raw returns and Truth makes his entrance, but he wants the music to cut. “Hey, I made a mistake. That was on me, my bad. I didn’t accept your challenge for R-Truth. I accepted your challenge for R-Truth’s friend.” It’s Jeff Hardy! The Charismatic Enigma is getting a surprise rematch! Will this bait and switch throw Theory off completely? Or will Theory just go 2-0 against the future hall of famer?
Austin Theory VS Jeff Hardy!
The bell rings and the two tie up. Theory powers Hardy to a corner, lets off fast and mocks Hardy’s moves. The fans rally for Hardy as Theory headlocks, but Hardy powers out. Theory runs Hardy over and then mocks the moves again. But Hardy drags Theory into a cradle! TWO, and Theory blocks a kick! Hardy throws hands, Theory avoids the jawbreaker but Hardy rolls Theory up! TWO, and Theory says Hardy was pulling tights! Hardy apologizes, then dropkicks Theory out of the ring! Hardy is on the apron, but Theory blocks his kick to trip Hardy up! Hardy lands hard on the apron, but Theory then drags him out for a DRAPING NECKBREAKER! Hardy is down while Raw goes to break!
Raw returns and Hardy fights the chinlock, only for Theory to snapmare and stomp Hardy down! Theory talks trash to Hardy then jumps, but Hardy avoids the elbow drop! Hardy gets up, gives Theory an atomic drop, then trips him up for the leg splitting leg drop! Basement dropkick then a SPLASH! Cover, TWO! Hardy drags Theory up but Theory kicks back, whips, but Hardy reverses to send Theory out. Hardy builds speed to WRECK Theory with a dropkick! Hardy goes out, runs around the way and leaps off the steps, POETRY IN MOTION! Theory hits barriers and fans fire up with Hardy! The ring count is past 5 but Hardy puts Theory in.
Hardy HOTSHOTS Theory into a drop zone, and fans fire up as Hardy climbs! but Theory trips Hardy up by hitting the ropes! Theory fireman’s carries and spins, A T L! Cover, Theory wins!
Winner: Austin Theory, by pinfall
And that is two-and-oh! Theory even gets another victory selfie to add to his gallery! But Hardy gets up to give Theory a TWIST OF FATE! And he grabs the phone to take a payback selfie! Will Theory still take the momentum from the win and turn it into something big for the Fall?
Drew McIntyre talks with Big E at gorilla position.
About last week… The footage showed that nothing was intentional last week, but McIntyre saw red and of course dropped Big E with a Claymore. To be honest, Big E threw fuel on the fire by tagging in without permission. So maybe tonight they coexist. We know Thursday, they will do what they do. At Crown Jewel, may the best man win. Don’t worry, McIntyre will. But let Big E do what he does: AWWWWWW Sacramento~! Clap for your WWE World CHAMPIOOON~! And FEEL~ the POWER~! Big E heads out first, will he and McIntyre make it work in a rematch with “Big Bob” and DZ?
Sonya Deville talks with Adam Pearce backstage.
They are in agreement that things have to be bigger and better than ever, but then Charlotte Flair walks in. Are they talking about a way to screw her over? No, they were talking about the Raw season premiere next week, not that it is any of her business. And what is she talking about? Well Charlotte wasn’t asked but told to defend her title. And then they let Bianca walk out and disrespect her during her farewell speech! Plus, no champagne, balloons or hugs! She has to defend the title she made relevant! She smells conspiracy! Sonya has Charlotte relax, because this is just all logical sense to have that main event.
Charlotte won’t be replaced by Bianca because she will still be Raw Women’s Champion AND the new face of SmackDown! Forget SmackDown, is Charlotte one moment away from a meltdown?
Drew McIntyre & Big E VS The Dirty Dawgs!
Raw returns as McIntyre makes his entrance, Angela the sword in hand. Then Robert Roode & Dolph Ziggler make theirs. The teams sort out and the world champion starts against The Show-Off. They tie up, go around, and Big E SLAMS Ziggler down. Big E swivels them hips but Ziggler gets up. Ziggler throws hands, swivels his hips, but runs into Big E’s shoulder! Cover, TWO! Big E tags in McIntyre, they mug Ziggler, and then McIntyre TOSSES Ziggler to a corner. McIntyre CHOPS Ziggler and he falls down! McIntyre drags Ziggler up to CHOP him again, dedicating that one to “Big Bob.” Ziggler kicks McIntyre in the leg, rakes his eye, then tags in Roode.
The Dawgs mug McIntyre, Roode bumps him off buckles, then climbs up to rain down fists. Roode shouts, “I’m BIG BOB!” then he hops down to CHOP! Roode whips corner to corner but McIntyre comes back to run him over! “I’m BIG D!” McIntyre dead lifts Roode to a suplex! Cover, TWO! McIntyre wrenches Roode’s arm, tags Big E in, and they mug Roode. Roode kicks back, rakes Big E’s eyes, then headlocks. Big E powers up and out, things speed up, Big E hurdles and CLOBBERS Roode! Big E BLASTS Ziggler off the apron, then drags Roode over to the apron to CLUB away on his chest! Fans fire up as Big E gets back up, for the APRON SPLASH only for Ziggler to save Roode!
Ziggler then aims and runs at Big E, but Big E turns Famouser into a TOSS into the timekeeper’s area! But Roode whips Big E into the steel steps! Fans boo and McIntyre coaches Big E up as Raw goes to break.
Raw returns again and Roode bumps Big E off buckles. Tag to Ziggler and he stomps a mudhole in. The ref counts, Ziggler lets off to argue with him, and Roode chokes Big E! McIntyre protests but Ziggler dropkicks Big E down! Cover, TWO! Ziggler grows annoyed but he taunts Big E then wraps on a chinlock. Ziggler leans on the hold but Big E endures. Ziggler claws at Big E’s eyes, but Big E fights up to his feet! Big E reaches, walks towards his corner, but Ziggler rakes eyes again! Roode distracts the ref from seeing that, Ziggler hits a NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Ziggler scrapes Big E’s face off ropes! The ref counts, Ziggler lets off and tags in Roode.
Roode whips Ziggler in for a SPLASH! Then Ziggler feeds Big E to Roode’s kick and NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Roode does push-up just to show off, then he drags Big E up to tag Ziggler. The Dawgs mug Big E, Ziggler rakes Big E’s eyes again, then climbs up in a corner. Ziggler rains down fists, stops at 7 because he says what happens here, and then he runs corner to corner, to SPLASH! Ziggler waits for Big E to stagger forward, but Big E TOSSES the satellite DDT away! Fans fire up as both men are down, hot tags to Roode and McIntyre! The Scottish Warrior rallies, whips and OVERHEAD Belly2Belly suplexes! Then he clinches Roode for another OVERHEAD Belly2Belly!
Ziggler runs in but he gets an OVERHEAD Belly2Belly! McIntyre dodges Roode to hit a NECKBREAKER! McIntyre kips up, fans fire up, and he corner clotheslines Ziggler for the INVERTED ALABAMA SLAM onto Roode! Fans fire up with McIntyre as he fireman’s carries Roode. Roode scrambles, fights free, and Ziggler goes after Big E! McIntyre and Big E avoid a collision but Ziggler trips Big E and Roode hits a SPINEBUSTER! Cover, TWO! Ziggler tags in, GLORIOUS FAMOUSER!! Cover, TWO!! McIntyre survives but Ziggler coordinates with Roode. Tag to Roode, Ziggler whips Roode and Roode whips Ziggler, but McIntyre dodges the splash! GLASGOW KISS FOR ROODE!
Big E is back on the apron, McIntyre gives him the tag! Big E scoops Roode, for the BIG ENDING! Cover, Big E and McIntyre win!
Winners: Big E & Drew McIntyre, by pinfall
The WWE World Champion has belt and hand raised, but then McIntyre turns him around. The two stare down, but McIntyre offers a handshake. Big E takes it, and both men are fired up for Crown Jewel. But then Big E doesn’t let McIntyre leave first. They get even more fired up! McIntyre says Big E will never be him, but Big E says he doesn’t want to be. We will see who is the better man at Crown Jewel!
The Street Profits are fired up backstage.
Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins are back on Raw, and they’re gonna take it by storm again! It’s like deja vu, because they’re gonna put the division on notice! Ford is excited for Crown Jewel. Are you ready~, ready~, ready~? Live on the WWE Network and Peacock this Thursday. But the biggest match they’re watching is the Raw Tag Team Championships, the fan favorite odd couple, RKBRO VS the Phenomenal AJ Styles & the one who actually puts in the work, Omos! Yeah, Styles is like that kid in the group project who doesn’t do anything but still gets the A. Wait, Ford and Dawkins were “that guy.”
But they aren’t just asking, they’re demanding for the smoke! Wait, it is smoky in here. Styles and Omos walk in and Styles says they were bringing dignity back to the Raw Tag Division, then these two dorks had to show up. Omos says Raw is HIS house. Uh, their house. Styles’ name is there, too. But you’re looking at the next Raw Tag Team Champions. They’ll beat RKBRO at Crown Jewel, making those two a fleeting memory. They gone…! But hey, if the Profits aren’t too beat up from the Street Fight on SmackDown, not that anyone cares about SmackDown here on Monday Night Raw, and maybe if they put a hurting on RKBRO, they can be at the top of the list when facing the new champions, aka Omos & Styles.
Wow, top of the list? HAHAHAHAHAHA! No. They’ll be back to put the entire roster on notice. Because the Profits are up, and #WEWANTTHESMOKE! Bye. Styles points out how it’s weird that they are the Profits, not Prophets. Well, they have no idea what’s coming anyway.
Mansoor VS Cedric Alexander w/ Shelton Benjamin!
Before going 1v1 with The Beacon at Crown Jewel to settle things from last week, the Star of Saudi Arabia shines on his own! Can he overcome PRIMED Alexander to be ready for Mustafa Ali?
Raw returns and The Hurt Business make their entrance. The bell rings, Mansoor and Alexander circle, and Alexander kicks low. Alexander headlocks, Mansoor tries to power out but Alexander holds tight. Mansoor rolls Alexander away, gets around to waistlock but Alexander bucks the O’Conner Roll. Mansoor wheelbarrows and victory rolls to a STANDING MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO! Mansoor CLUBS Alexander, wrenches and whips but Alexander holds ropes. Mansoor CHOPS, whips, but Alexander slides under to pump handle and EXPLODER! Alexander then gets Mansoor up, whips and scoops for a BACKBREAKER!
Mansoor crawls to a corner, Alexander storms over and climbs up to bark in Mansoor’s face while grinding forearms in. Alexander throws body shots, CLUBS Mansoor down, but Mansoor hits back. Alexander DECKS Mansoor and then rains down fists! Cover, TWO! Alexander stays on Mansoor with a rear bearhug and he leans his weight on Mansoor. Alexander drives in elbows, talks some trash, pulls hair and then has a chinlock to stretch Mansoor back. Mansoor endures, fights up as fans rally, and he pries the hold apart, only for Alexander to knee him in the back! Alexander throws body shots but Mansoor throws back elbows.
Alexander reels Mansoor in but Mansoor lands out of the back suplex to boot and ENZIGURI! Mansoor gets up, Alexander throws heavy body shots. Alexander whips, scoops but Mansoor tilt-o-whirls through for a REVERSE DDT! Mansoor fires up, Alexander gets to ropes and Mansoor runs, but Alexander puts him on the apron. Mansoor slingshots in for the NECKBREAKER! Cover, Mansoor wins!
Winner: Mansoor, by pinfall
But here comes Mustafa Ali! “You’ve got to be kidding me. After everything I’ve done to you, you are still coming out here and smiling like some damn fanboy! Honestly, it’s pathetic.” But in Mansoor’s hometown, Ali will finally wipe that stupid smile off Mansoor’s face. And not just Mansoor! No, Ali will wipe the smile off everyone’s face that supports Mansoor. Mansoor tells Ali, “For once in your life, shut the hell up!” Mansoor wants Ali to listen to him now! “I said look at me, you piece of trash!” Mansoor doesn’t have a smile on his face right now. But at Crown Jewel, Mansoor will be grinning ear to ear when he beats Ali senseless!
This Thursday, Mansoor proves to the world that Ali is nothing more than just a pathetic, cowardly excuse for a man! Mansoor then makes it even more clear in Arabic! Ali is stunned to see this fire in Mansoor! Will the Beacon burn in the light of the Star of Saudi Arabia?
Raw holds a dual interview via video with Goldberg and Bobby Lashley.
Separated for obvious reasons, Corey Graves thanks both men for being here tonight. Starting with Goldberg, we heard Lashley’s response to Goldberg’s threats. Goldberg says those weren’t threats. Threats are what someone might do. Goldberg will do what he said he’d do: beat Lashley within an inch of his life, then finish the job. Lashley hops Goldberg realizes that not only is what he saying nonsense, but criminal. Threatening the life of a man on live TV? Lashley could call the authorities and have Goldberg arrested. But that is not how Lashley does business. Goldberg can run his mouth because nothing he says will become reality. Lashley is untouchable!
Lashley promises Crown Jewel goes the same was as SummerSlam, but Goldberg won’t have any family members to fight for him. And speaking of family, how does Goldberg’s son feel about the example his father is setting? Goldberg wants Lashley to choose his words wisely. The more Lashley talks about Goldberg’s family, the more Goldberg will make Lashley suffer. In 72 hours, Lashley’s ass is Goldberg’s, and there’s not a damn thing he can do about it. Well Goldberg must not have been watching last week. You can’t kill the All Mighty! You can only hope to survive!
Lashley wants Goldberg to remember how he dropped to his knees, thanking the heavens for this match. Remember that Thursday when he’ll be begging for forgiveness. Is Lashley finished? And Lashley doesn’t believe his own crap, does he? Lashley says he’ll finish with this: before, Goldberg faced Lashley with restrictions; but No Holds Barred means there’s nothing to stop Lashley from ending Goldberg’s career! Lashley is done here. Goldberg corrects Lashley, and says they’ll be done at Crown Jewel. “Safe travels. Kill ya Thursday, Bobby!” Will either man survive when they can do just about anything to each other?
RKBRO talks backstage.
Matt Riddle is anticipating another great plan this week. He still can’t get over how Randy Orton suckered Omos & Styles during that match last week. Orton could win an Oscar, or even a Kids Choice Award! That was wild because Riddle wasn’t sure if Orton was coming out, but he knew deep down that Orton had a plan all along. For the love of God, Riddle, there was never a plan! Wow, totally believable, and totally Randy. Riddle says at Crown Jewel, they can table top Omos! Always works, dude. And what about The Profits? They say they want the smoke, so Riddle got a ton of ideas.
Orton says if Riddle wants to know the plan, with all his heart, then the plan is to go out and win! then at Crown Jewel, they will go to the ring and what? W-Win? YES. Now one question: Does Riddle want the smoke? Yeah! Then let’s go get it. Nice! The tag champions head out, but will they fire up on the way to Crown Jewel?
RKBRO VS The Street Profits!
Raw returns and the Profits make their entrance. The teams sort out and Riddle starts with Ford. Riddle says he wants the smoke, then he ties up with Ford. Riddle waistlocks, SLAMS Ford, and Ford calls to Dawkins! Riddle gets the ARMBAR, but Ford makes it a cover, TWO! Ford scrambles to ropes and Riddle resets. Fans chant for “R K BRO! R K BRO!” as Riddle and Ford circle. They tie up, Ford waistlocks to a headlock, and he grinds Riddle down. Riddle fights up, but Ford holds tight to the headlock. Riddle powers out, Ford goes up and over and handsprings to show off the agility. Ford mocks the Orton pose, then things speed up as Ford hurdles, hurdles and dropkicks!
Fans fire up as Ford brings Riddle over and tags Dawkins in. The Profits whip then dropkick Riddle down! Then the back suplex SPLASH! Cover, TWO! Dawkins swipes at Orton but he gets away. Tag to Ford, the Profits double suplex but Riddle slips out! Riddle dodges Dawkins, Orton trips Dawkins up and bumps him off the apron! Riddle dumps Ford out, then Riddle goes up and to the apron, PENALTY KICK for Dawkins! SPRINGBOARD FLOATING BRO takes Dawkins down! Ford FLIES in outta nowhere to take out RKBRO! Fans are fired up as all four men are down and Raw goes to break!
Raw returns again and Orton has Ford with a chinlock. Dawkins coaches Ford and he fights up, throws elbows, but Orton knees low. Orton whips Ford to ropes but Ford jumps over for the sunset flip! TWO, and Orton CLOBBERS Ford with a clothesline! Orton tags Riddle in, Riddle gut wrenches Ford and spins around and around and around! Riddle stops at about a dozen rotations then suplexes Ford away! Ford sits up and tries to not see double, but Riddle covers, TWO! Riddle drags Ford up into a chinlock and grinds him down. Ford endures, fights up and throws elbows and body shots. Riddle ROCKS Ford with a forearm, reels him in, and gets him up, but Ford slips out to ENZIGURI!
Both men are down, fans fire up as they crawl, Riddle anchors Ford’s foot, but Ford still fights up to hot tag Dawkins! Dawkins rallies on RKBRO, whips but Riddle reverses, only for Dawkins to hurdle and flying back elbow! Dawkins runs at Riddle to CYCLONE SPLASH! Then he scoops, but Riddle fights the exploder off! Riddle kicks, into a T-BONE BELLY2BELLY! Dawkins gets Riddle up, THE SILENCER! Cover, TWO!! Riddle survives the twisting butterfly but Dawkins drags him back up. Scoop, but Riddle slips out to ripcord FINAL FLASH! Dawkins staggers, Ford tags in. Hot tag to Orton, and The Viper rallies on Ford! Orton dodges Ford to POWERSLAM!
Ford flounders and writhes to the apron but Orton has him through ropes! Orton blows a big kiss to the fans before the DRAPING DDT! Fans fire up with Orton as he hears voices in his head! Ford slowly rises, but Styles & Omos make their entrance. Wait, just Omos? Styles sets up, springboard for the PHENOMENAL FOREARM!
Winners: RKBRO, by disqualification
Omos CLOBBERS Dawkins, then choke grips Riddle for an APRON CHOKE SLAM! Styles has Omos get in the ring with him, and Styles feeds Ford to Omos’ fireman’s carry! Gorilla press for a MOUNTAIN TOP DROP! Styles talks trash right to Orton’s face, “Did you see it coming?!” Omos then waits for Orton to stand back up, and he gives him a COLOSSAL ROUNDHOUSE! The Phenomenal One and the Mountain of a Man are standing tall, but will they be win big at Crown Jewel?
Queen’s Crown Semifinals: Shayna Baszler VS “Doudrop” Piper Niven!
The Queen of Spades got to bully Naomi on SmackDown, now she looks to make someone else #TapNapOrSnap. But will she get #DouDROPPED this close to the throne?
Raw returns and Piper makes her entrance. The bell rings and wait, here comes Zelina Vega! La Muneca is here in person to see who meets her in the finals. She even puts the crown on as if it’s hers! Shayna and Piper focus on each other as they circle and tie up. They’re in a deadlock but then Piper powers Shayna to a corner! Piper lets off and Shayna comes back. Shayna gets around, KICKS a leg, but Piper stays up. Shayna KICKS the leg more, then keeps away from Piper’s grip. They tie up, Piper TOSSES Shayna, and then storms up to her to grapple again. Shayna KICKS away on the leg and she has Piper down! Vega pretends to be concerned as Shayna runs, but into a SAIDO!
Piper hobbles up, Shayna is in a corner, and Piper runs corner to corner to CANNONBALL! Piper snarls, drags Shayna up and reels her in, to scoop and- NO! Shayna slips out to a KIRAFUDA KLUTCH! Piper endures, Shayna squeezes tight, but Piper RAMS Shayna into buckles! Shayna holds on but Piper throws her down! Piper runs and BASEMENT FLOPS! KIRAFUDA KLUTCH! Piper is caught, she’s fading, tries to fight up, but Shayna just holds on tighter! Piper gets up again, pries at the legs and makes this a cover! PIPER WINS!
Winner: Piper Niven, by pinfall (advances to Crown Jewel)
Piper snatches victory from the jaws of defeat! Vega is pleased, mostly because she doesn’t have to worry about the dangerous Baszler. She and Piper stare down on stage, but who will be the one returning to the US with the crown and cape?
Rhea Ripley & Nikki A.S.H. talk with Bianca Belair backstage.
The WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions want to wish the EST good luck against Charlotte Flair, and they officially welcome her to Raw with a baseball cap. Let them know if she needs any BOOM, ZAP and KAPOW! Rhea says that’s Nikki way of saying, “Welcome to Raw.” Bianca says there is nothing or no one that will get in her way of giving Charlotte a proper farewell. They like the sound of that. Bianca says she’s got this, though the hat and the ponytail don’t really work together. But will Bianca be wearing the Raw belt soon enough?
Finn Balor VS Mace!
The Prince is here to show Raw what’s in store! Will he use the menacing Mace as a tune-up for Woods and the King of the Ring finals?
Raw returns and Woods has returned to sit on the throne and show Balor what’s coming. Mace makes his entrance and the bell rings. They tie up, Balor wrenches but Mace shoves him away to knee hard and low! Mace runs, slides and comes back to CLOBBER Balor with an elbow! Cover, TWO! Mace clamps on with a neck wrench and he grinds Balor down. Balor fights up but Mace knees low! Mace puts Balor into a corner, Balor BOOTS him back! Balor throws forearms, goes for legs but Mace CLUBS him down! Mace drags Balor up to throw hands in the corner! Mace then runs, slides and comes back to back elbow hard!
Mace brings Balor up, whips him corner to corner and runs in, but Balor dodges and runs, only to run into a SCRAPBUSTER! Cover, TWO! Mace snarls but he drags Balor up and clamps on a claw into the shoulder. Fans rally up for Balor as he fights up and KICKS a leg. Balor tries for a takedown but Mace gut wrenches him up. Balor slips out, trips Mace up and DOUBLE STOMPS him down! Mace gets up and fireman’s carries but Balor slips out to an ELBOW DROP DDT! Fans fire up as Balor aims and runs, SLINGBLADE! Balor aims again, SHOTGUN DROPKICK! Mace hits buckles, flops into the drop zone and Balor goes up top! COUP DE GRACE! Cover, Balor wins!
Winner: Finn Balor, by pinfall
Woods cheers Balor, and Balor stares him down as he walks up the ramp. Woods says that crown is his, then points the scepter at Balor. Balor grabs it to yank Woods off the throne! Kofi comes out to back Woods up and keep the peace. Will the Prince become a king? Or will even Finn have to say, “All Hail King Woods?”
John Morrison is meditating again.
The Viking Raiders ask him, “In the name of Ragnar,” what he’s doing? Morrison says he is on a spiritual journey to find his chi, the mystical force at the center of all life. He is so close! What happens after that? If he captures this chi, will it help him to raid? Maybe. But the ultimate purpose of his journey is to share his inner most thoughts with the universe. What good is it if it’s not to raid? Erik & Ivar leave so Morrison can go back to meditating.
Raw Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair VS Bianca Belair!
The Queen claims conspiracy and bias, but The EST says this is just what they both deserve. Will Bianca be going into Crown Jewel on the precipice of becoming a double champion? Or will Charlotte complicate the title scene by keeping this title as she goes to SmackDown?
Raw returns and Charlotte makes her entrance. The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and the landscape of the WWE Women’s Division will be shaped right here and now!
Bianca dares Charlotte to bring it and fans rally up. Bianca and Charlotte slowly approach, tie up, and Bianca powers Charlotte back. Charlotte gets around to a waistlock and SLAM, but Bianca gets up to switch and SLAM Charlotte! Charlotte stands, elbows out, then runs, but Bianca runs and dropkicks cancel out! They both kip up and fans fire up! Charlotte oddly offers a handshake, but Bianca doesn’t trust it. Charlotte kicks low and whips Bianca to a corner, but Bianca goes up and over and handsprings to the other corner. Bianca says kiss this, then she jumps over Charlotte to RAM her in the corner! Bianca digs her shoulder in, backs off, but Charlotte knees her away!
Charlotte storms up, puts Bianca in a corner and stomps a mudhole into her! The ref counts, Charlotte lets off to whip corner to corner but Bianca reverses. Charlotte goes up and out but Bianca dropkicks her down! Bianca wants Charlotte to get back in, then she handsprings at her. But Charlotte trips Bianca up, drags her out and TOSSES her over the announce desk! Charlotte soaks up the cheers and jeers from Sacramento as Raw goes to break.
Raw returns again and Charlotte goes to bump Bianca off buckles, but she blocks to bump Charlotte instead! Bianca scoops and SLAMS, then runs to handspring, only for Charlotte to sweep the arms! Charlotte CHOPS Bianca, then CHOPS her again! Charlotte brings Bianca around to back suplex! And kip up! Fans duel between “WOO and “E S T!” as Charlotte handsprings! But Bianca gets her knees up! Charlotte pays for trying to copy Bianca, and Bianca fires up to dropkick Charlotte down! Bianca handsprings to MOONSAULT! Bianca stomps and kicks Charlotte around, then spins Charlotte for a stalling suplex! Bianca holds Charlotte up for 10 before she drops her down! Cover, TWO!
Bianca keeps her cool as she stomps Charlotte. Bianca runs to SPLASH onto knees! Charlotte rolls Bianca up, TWO and Charlotte shows her own power as she deadlifts to a POWERBOMB! Cover, TWO! Charlotte grows frustrated as Bianca survives, and she drags Bianca to a drop zone. Charlotte steps on Bianca as she goes to the corner and climbs up. MOONSAULT! Bianca moves, but Charlotte STANDING MOONSAULTS! Cover, TWO!! Charlotte is beside herself as Bianca survives that double take, but fans know “This is Awesome!” Charlotte, grabs at Bianca but Bianca drags her to a ghost pin, TWO! Bianca gets around, scoops but Charlotte slips out to shove!
Bianca dodges to SPINEBUSTER! Charlotte scrambles to get out before the cover! Charlotte is frustrated but Bianca fetches her and bumps her off the apron. Bianca puts Charlotte in the ring but Charlotte slips out the side. Bianca watches as Charlotte paces around the way. Bianca goes out after her again and kicks ow. They scrap right by the barriers and the announce desk! Bianca TOSSES Charlotte over the desk in return for earlier! Bianca refreshes the count and tells Charlotte to kiss this again as Raw goes to break.
Raw returns once again as Charlotte whips and CHOPS Bianca off her feet! Bianca gets up with a scowl on her face and throws hands but Charlotte clubs and hammers away on her! Charlotte lets off, whips but Bianca holds ropes to kick back. Bianca then chicken wings the arms and gets Charlotte up, but Charlotte victory rolls! Bianca sits on it, TWO! Bianca dodges the boot once but the BOOT comes back! Cover, TWO! Charlotte is a little frustrated, but she sees Bianca on the apron. Charlotte drags Bianca up, Bianca fights the suplex nd tries to suplex back. Charlotte fights that, stomps Bianca’s feet and wrenches, but Bianca ROCKS her with a forearm!
Bianca climbs up the corner, Charlotte DECKS her to the floor! Charlotte goes to the apron, climbs the corner herself, and fans fire up as she SUPER MOONSAULTS! Direct hit at the ramp and Charlotte fires up! Fans fire up, too, and she puts Bianca into the ring. Charlotte stalks Bianca, runs in and NATURAL- NO! Bianca slips out to backslide! TWO!! Bianca dodges again, and swings her hair! Charlotte dodges that but Bianca dodges the boot, to chicken wing and GlamEST Slam! Cover, TWO!! Charlotte survives and Bianca is beside herself! Charlotte goes to a corner, Bianca is after her and torture racks! But Charlotte holds the ropes for dear life!
Bianca puts Charlotte on the apron but Charlotte HOTSHOTS back! Slingshot and roll up but Bianca slips through! Bianca scoops, Charlotte sips off, Bianca bucks the O’Conner Roll! They both run, Charlotte SPEARS!! Cover, TWO!!! Bianca survives and no one can believe it! Charlotte scowls and drags Bianca around by her ponytail! The ref reprimands, Charlotte stops but she has Bianca in a drop zone. Charlotte goes back up the corner, saying she is the champion! She reaches the top, to MOONSAULT! Bianca dodges again and waistlocks to GERMAN SUPLEX! Cover, TWO!! Charlotte survives and Bianca is shocked all over again! And Charlotte is laughing!
Bianca gets up, drags Charlotte over to a drop zone and stomps her. Bianca climbs now, but Charlotte trips her up! Charlotte climbs up but Bianca fights back! They struggle up top as Charlotte wants a superplex, but Bianca fires off! Charlotte drops down, comes back and climbs up, but Bianca catches her for a SUNSET FLIP POWERBOMB!! High stack, TWO!?! Charlotte survives again and Sacramento is thunderous! Bianca sees Charlotte bail out of the ring, and she hurries to get her! Charlotte JAMS Bianca with a chair!!
Winner: Bianca Belair, by disqualification (Charlotte Flair retains the title)
But Bianca DROPKICKS Charlotte, then SMACKS her with the chair in return! The EST stands tall but she doesn’t get the gold! Will she be able to make up for that at Crown Jewel?
What a mishmash of a go-home. As we just saw to end it, we got an awesome match with a BS ending. That felt more like they realized they were running low on time and just had to wrap things up rather than the actual plan. And sadly, this probably means that we’re getting champions simply trading belts like they had New Day and the Street Profits do last year. And in that scenario, I feel like that means Becky Lynch retains so that she can be champion from her first day back on Raw. But even with the dirty ass-pull finish, this match was great stuff and I wish they had let the Queen’s Crown matches have even half the quality.
Piper VS Shayna deserved to be more than two paragraphs long! Balor VS Mace didn’t need to happen if all it was going to be was a vehicle for Balor to confront Woods on the stage. Take Balor’s two paragraphs of match, give it to Piper VS Shayna, and finally the WWE would give us a great Queen’s Crown match. Piper winning was a great surprise, but it would’ve been a much more definitive end to her short feud with Shayna if it was more than just her turning the submission into a pin. Piper VS Vega will be good, I’m sure, and will easily be the best match of the tournament, but it will not redeem the crap Vince shoveled out for this historic first time.
As I said, Balor could’ve easily just shown up after Woods VS Mahal, which was still a great match in itself. Balor VS Woods could go either way, honestly, and both results could be big for whichever show has the King of the Ring. The stuff with Theory, Truth and Hardy was alright, but I just wish there was continuity where Theory calls Candice LeRae to get permission per Truth’s joke. This is fine as Hardy’s good-bye to Raw as he will go to SmackDown through the Draft, and maybe Theory moves on to some other long standing names. The US Championship is pretty open, too, so can guys like Theory and Keith Lee get in on the hunt?
Mansoor VS Alexander was a good match, of course Mansoor wins, but he had a great promo on Ali! Mansoor is pretty much given to win at Crown Jewel because that’s the number one tradition of these shows, but he and Ali could have a really strong match to establish both of them in the singles division and maybe even in the US Championship scene. We got really good stuff out of McIntyre, Big E and The Dirty Dawgs, but it was a bit redundant after seeing this match-up before. McIntyre had a good sense of humor about it on social media, though, joking that he loves “first-time matches.” Big E VS McIntyre is going to be great but of course Big E wins to keep the world title on Raw.
Goldberg and Lashley had… Well they had a double interview promo but none of it was that different from their other promos. I barely care about this match, it should be the opener to get it out of the way. I also don’t understand this change from Johnny Drip Drip to Johnny Meditation. Is this all they have for him now since he can’t feud with Miz? He’s going to SmackDown, he could be getting in on the Intercontinental Championship scene, or even foolishly call out Roman Reigns for a short but entertaining feud. We got a really good match out of RKBRO and the Profits but of course Omos & Styles “ruin” it. The math needs to say RKBRO is winning at Crown Jewel, and that means Omos & Styles stand tall here.
My Score: 8.2/10
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Andrew’s IMPACT Sacrifice Results & Match Ratings: 3.24.2023
Well damn, 24 hours changes everything! Josh is injured and has to vacate the World title! Mickie is also injured but she’s making her announcement during the show. How does IMPACT salvage their two main title pictures at Sacrifice?
Well hot damn, a lot of news popped up in less than 24 hours. So Josh Alexander tore his triceps; so he has to vacate the World Title and he’s being replaced by Steve Maclin in the 6 man match. Mickie James apparently also has an injury, but they are going to turn it into a segment on the show instead of a straight up vacating.
Now from a story perspective this sucks since I loved the Maclin/Alexander segment last night. That’s just me being selfish since I wanted to see that build and Maclin get the big win he deserves. Now he’ll be facing Kushida for the vacated title at Rebellion, and even if Maclin wins it will feel a little flat. Here’s to hoping that when Josh returns from injury they can find a way to bridge the time lost and keep the story going eventually.
.@MeanGiaMiller caught up with @FrankieKazarian and #RichSwann to talk about @Walking_Weapon's unfortunate injury and @SteveMaclin replacing him as their partner TONIGHT at #Sacrifice! #CountdownToSacrifice pic.twitter.com/jdnqk6BLN9
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) March 24, 2023
- Speedball Mike Bailey vs Jonathan Gresham: Bailey wins via Reverse Figure Four – *** 3/4
- Digital Media Championship: Joe Hendry (c) vs Brian Myers: Hendry retains via Standing Ovation – ***
- Gisele Shaw w/Jai Vidal & Savannah Evans vs Deonna Purrazzo: Deonna wins via Venus de Milo – *** 1/4
- Kenny King w/Eddie Edwards vs PCO: PCO wins via Straight Right Chair Punch – *** 1/4
- X Division Championship: Lince Dorado vs Trey Miguel (c): Trey retains via Cradle – *
- IMPACT Tag Team Titles: TMDK (Shane Haste & Bad Dude Tito) vs Bullet Club (Ace Austin & Chris Bey) (c): Bullet Club retains via ABC 1-2-Sweet – ****
- Busted Open Match: Bully Ray vs Tommy Dreamer: Bully wins – ** 1/2
- Time Machine (Kushida, Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley) vs Rich Swann, Frankie Kazarian & Steve Maclin: Kushida wins via Hoverboard Lock – ****
Speedball Mike Bailey vs Jonathan Gresham
With the injuries in the main event, I could definitely see one, or both of these guys; fast tracked into the title scene after Rebellion. And I don’t think anyone would really be mad at that.
A quick tit for tat start, no one really gets any advantage. Just a few quick counters and takeover attempts. They both pause to take in chants from the crowd and then lock up again. Collar and Elbow tie up, they don’t release and both roll one another under the rope and out of the ring. There is an early moment where while he’s against the ropes he pokes Speedball in the eye and then apologizes. So things go back to a technical face vs face, but it could be a precursor.
Technical catch wrestling continues. Wrestling one another down, trying to get positions for small submission picks or limb attacks, but nothing is sticking yet. Gresham does manage to an Indian Deathlock, and then a Reverse Figure Four that Gresham conveniently can’t untangle so the referee has to do it and Bailey is pissed. Gresham tries to explain it, but Bailey lights him up, Gresham falls out of the ring, Golden Triangle Moonsault and now the aggression is starting to pick up. Hamstring Kicks and Chops from Bailey, but Gresham baits the attack and trips up Bailey before attacking the left knee with a grin on his face. Bailey is grounded for a while and Gresham keeps trying to twist off his leg. Eventually some Up Kicks break the submission attempt but Gresham wrestles him down again into a Bow and Arrow Trailer Hitch kind of move. Since Bailey has Tanahashi next week, Gresham must be trying to make Bailey’s knees equal. Good Guy Gresham.
Bailey starts stringing some offense together, but a few Low Dropkicks ruins Bailey’s base and causes him to face plant and the offense is going nowhere. Gresham even goes for the pinfall by trying to hyper extend the leg he’s been working on. Strikes continue to trade, Gresham tries to shoot the half but Bailey kicks off, Hamstring Kick again, Gresham Kips Up but clutches the leg a little, a chance for Speedball but Gresham cradles him to the ground and locks in a Figure Four. Speedball eventually rolls to the apron, Gresham tries to continue the stretching but Bailey kicks him into the post, sweeps the leg and Moonsault Double Knees right on Gresham’s head; Bailey went full Billy Kidman with his offense.
Bailey and Gresham continue to jockey for position on the outside, it looks like it might be a double count out. Gresham gets in at 9, Bailey gets in right at the 10 and the referee allows the match to continue. Some quick offense, Tornado Kicks to the corner, Ultima Weapon misses, Gresham goes for the Figure Four again but Speedball reverses it and Gresham taps pretty quick.
Backstage segment with Brian Myers, Moose joins and says he’ll help him beat Hendry – but then Santino shows up! He tells Moose he’s dumb and just stooged himself out, so he’s banning him from ringside. Who would’ve thunk it, the comedy character brings the logic.
Digital Media Championship: Joe Hendry (c) vs Brian Myers
Myers powders after a few early bumps and then Hendry follows him. Hendry is definitely not fighting with “champion’s advantage”, as is the way for babyfaces. Myers tries to fight back on the floor but a Scoop Slam leaves Myers on the receiving end. Hendry has to roll in to reset the 10 count and Myers catches him.
A few quick attacks, Roster Cut attempt but Hendry gets the goozle on. Standing Ovation attempt but Myers slips it, Chop Block, and continues to hammer down on Hendry. Myers with a Falcon Arrow and a bunch of slightly arrogant offense until he goes for the Crossbody, gets caught again, Sack of Shit, and Hendry is back on the offensive. Pop Up Power – no, slips and a Running Spear from Myers for a 2 count. Myers hits the top rope but Hendry cuts him off, Myers pushes him off, launches and Hendry hits the RKO mid move! Throws Myers into the ropes, Standing Ovation, and Hendry retains!
So Mickie addresses her injury, it seems she broke a rib during the tag match. They are allowing Mickie to hold on to the title until Rebellion. Either she defends it in a 3 way versus Jordynne and the winner of the 4 Way at the Multiverse United show or Jordynne will face the winner of the 4 Way for the vacated title.
Gisele Shaw w/Jai Vidal & Savannah Evans vs Deonna Purrazzo
Deonna starts off angry, Gisele is getting rocked early, they go through a few rope running counter cradles and slides but its just early counter wrestling. Gisele manages to surprise Deonna going for an Armbar, but Deonna counters it, tries the Venus de Milo but Shaw powders. Deonna hits the Baseball Slide, starts beating on Gisele but she slides back in to distract the referee while Savannah clocks Deonna.
Triplicate European Uppercuts from Gisele keep her very comfortably in control. Another distraction to the ref and Savannah swings and connects with Deonna again. Deonna tries to fight from the corner, Gisele grabs Deonna’s feet drapes her across the ropes and drops both knees on Deonna. Gisele drives her knee into Deonna’s shoulder blades and goes for the Chin Lock. Deonna tries to power out, Gisele stifles it a little, but Deonna catches her with a Twisting Neckbreaker. Slow start to the strike exchange but it slowly picks up, Deonna with a beautiful spot of a no look Back Kick right to Gisele’s stomach, Running Knee Lift into the Russian Leg Sweep for 2. Deonna Pump Kick, Gisele Superkick, Deonna bounces off the ropes, Flatliner into Koji Clutch, but Gisele slides back a little to turn it into a pinfall to break the submission.
Both women have wrist control and just swing at each other. Deonna gets the best, one big swing but Gisele ducks it, catches Deonna in Shock and Awe (Backbreaker into Flatliner). Denouement attempt, Deonna grabs at the arm for the Fujiwara attempt but Gisele fights it off. Venus de Milo gets locked in and Deonna holds it a little longer to make a point.
Savannah attacks Deonna afterwards, but Tasha Steelz music hits. Tasha tries to play nice like she’s here to help Savannah, then cheap shots her, fights off Jai with a Tornado DDT kicking off of Savannah. Okurr on Jai and Tasha cleans house and babyfaces herself.
Kenny King w/Eddie Edwards vs PCO
Kenny comes out in an Honor No More shirt, which is a nice way to play into the story.
Eddie tries to get PCO’s attention and then Kenny attacks him right as the bell rings. PCO turns things around shortly, Eddie keeps trying to find angles to give Kenny ambush spots but PCO keeps fighting back. PCO stalks Eddie on the outside and Kenny hits a beautiful Tornillo, then a Scoop Slam as he mocks the whole Frankenstein gimmick. PCO rolls in and Kenny John Woo’s him into the corner and starts Bootwashing his face to talk smack. PCO fires, goozle and just throws Kenny out of the ring.
PCO kicks Kenny from getting back in the ring, looks to do his Senton but “short circuits”. So PCO does a Senton to the wrong side of the ring, crashing but popping right back up, and it apparently helped correct the issue. So Senton onto Kenny, throws him back in, Kenny tries the Eddy Gordo kick but PCO just barrels over him. PCO drapes Kenny in the corner, Codebreaker, into the back of the head Guillotine Leg Drop and now PCO pulls him to the apron.
Here we go, Deanimator attempt – but Eddie cuts him off, PCO kicks him back into the cameras, Kenny gets up and an Iconoclasm bouncing off the apron of the ring! Kenny throws him into the steps, rolls in, things he’s all but won…yet PCO beats the 10 count. “He’s Not Human” chant starts, Frog Splash from Kenny and PCO kicks out and fires at 2. Eddie throws a Kendo stick in the ring to distract the referee from Kenny using a chair. Kenny hits PCO once, PCO shakes it off and has a gameplan. So he actually helps keep the referee distracted to bait in Kenny for another chairshot attempt, but PCO just punches through the chair and knocks out Kenny.
Maclin, Kaz and Rich have a backstage segment. It perfectly shows the story beats of Maclin being annoyed that he put in all this prep and recon on Josh just for the opponent to be flipped. Typical tumultuous team members vibe, but Maclin gets his story beats across beautifully.
Can #RichSwann and @FrankieKazarian trust @SteveMaclin? #Sacrifice pic.twitter.com/TcEZ79IWkC
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) March 25, 2023
X Division Championship: Lince Dorado vs Trey Miguel (c)
Okay Lince comes out in a bathrobe with some cringe ass “Lucha Lit” gimmick. I…hate it. This is probably the first time ever that I want Trey to win. Cause Dorado is cringe as hell. In a game of them both sucking, I’ll pick the style of trash that I can tolerate more…which is Trey.
Lucha counter wrestling with flips over trips and that stupid ass Mirrored Dropkick Spot. I also don’t love the Lince doing the cat mannerisms, but Puma King and a few others have done that…so I guess its more tolerated in Lucha. This whole match has been a little paint by numbers boring Lucha where the moves are done just to pop the crowd but not to actually accomplish anything.
Diving whatever moves they accomplish nothing. Its really hard for me to care about flippy trash matches. Lince hits 2 of the 3 step Moonsaults, but Trey of course no sells and dodges the third, Tiger Wall Kick, but Trey stumbles a little for the Enzuigiri, Trey also hits a sloppy Outside In Tiger Feint…its just sloppy spots for spots sake. I would probably be more entertained if I had Runescape fired up on a different tab. This is just a waste of space, much like both “wrestlers”.
Lince hits a Avalanche Frankensteiner, into a Shooting Star Press but Trey powders. Lince tries that bounce off the corner with his legs spot, but its sloppy. Another sloppy Tiger Feint from Trey, Slingshot Sunset Bomb for 2. These are just stupid moves for stupid sake. Lince tries to cut off Trey from a rope run with a Big Boot but mostly misses, makes the whole cut off exchange look stupid. Trey with a flash cradle during the cut offs for pinfall. Eww…this was garbage.
IMPACT Tag Team Titles: TMDK (Shane Haste & Bad Dude Tito) vs Bullet Club (Ace Austin & Chris Bey) (c)
It is nice to see a variation of TMDK back together. I also enjoyed Tito called Ace and Bey the “Mini Bullet Club” since they’re the juniors heavyweights.
Tito and Bey start off, Bey is trying to show off his speed, Tito gets across the power though. Tito kinda looks like a young Scott Steiner, and he literally tosses Bey back into his corner. Ace tags in, tries to do something but Tito is just too strong. Haste gets tagged in for some flashy yet effective offense. Ace finds something with the Triangle Victory Roll, Bey blind tag, cheap shot on Tito, Russian Leg Sweep + Low Sweep combination into some Click Click Boom. So Bullet Club is showing very nice Junior style synergy. Haste is very loud and animated, so he’s a great one to have eating the offense. Especially when they do their Back Rake goof spot.
Haste finally maneuvers things to tag Tito in, and Haste hands off Ace to Tito and Tito hits a Standing Blue Thunder Bomb. Tree of Woe, Bey tries to come in to break up the spot but the referee is distract, Tito steps up and stands on the groin, nice homage to Petey Williams. We are in Canada. Announce team almost sets up too much meme fodder, and then Rehwoldt steers into it. Rehwoldt said Bey was trying to rush into to get Tito off…paused for a second, which you know Hannifan gave him a look. So then they just pivot to everyone in TMDK being like Australian Sex Pistols. Very clever misdirection.
The match is fun, Bey gets the hot tag, clocks everyone, Haste tries a Lariat, Bey ducks that, flies onto Tito on the outside, comes back in, Tornado Fameasser for 2. Bullet Club goes for a Torture Rack/Triangle Kick combo, but Haste gets out of it. Tito gets tagged in and he start to look like Steve Williams with the Doctor Bomb for 2. Tito hits a big battering ram Dive on Bey to clear him out. Haste Falcon Arrow, Tito Froggy Splash, but Bey breaks it up.
Tito starts getting ping ponged between the two Juniors, Torture Rack/Triangle Kick combination, for 1-2-3? – no Haste comes in the referee says it was in time to stop the 3 count. Tito charges and a beautifully times Superkick + Spinning Back Heel Kick on Tito. He’s dazed, ABC 1-2-Sweet! Bullet Club retain!
Busted Open Match: Bully Ray vs Tommy Dreamer
This is a First Blood Match for anyone who doesn’t know, and Dreamer comes out with an ECW Championship Belt.
Chair duel to start things, ECW replica belt to the face of Bully Ray. Dreamer grabs a soda from a fan, Muta mist on Bully, tries to shove the can into his skull for early blood but no. Bully crotches Dreamer on the guardrail and then picks a fight with Darren McCarty who’s in the crowd. Darren McCarty was the enforcer for the Detroit Red Wings, so its very old school letting the ex sports guy play. Bully also has a great spot where he pulls out a step ladder, then asks the referee to hold it, does the Jimmy Snuka pose and goes for a Splash and misses. Bully gets to rile up AEW and WWF fans all in one spot. Good old school heat. Corny, but good.
Dreamer gets a bag of tacks, Bully fights off the Piledriver, gets the cheese grater but Dreamer hits the Bionic Elbow as a counter. Cheese grater with Dreamer, Dreamer charges, Bully pulls the referee in the corner, so ref bump. Dreamer eventually makes contact with the cheese grater, but there’s no referee and Bully has his back to the camera, so it slow rolls the result nicely. Good Hands hit the ring, on with a towel to see if he can blot the bleeding before the ref comes to.
Bully hits Tommy with pocket tacks instead of pocket sand. Tries to drive Dreamer’s face into the tacks and then Elbow it further down but Dreamer moves. Dreamer grabs the grater again, Bully tries to beg off, screams he’s sorry and now tries to guilt Tommy with his family is going to see this. Dreamer actually stops and then Bully hits him in the balls. Bully busts open Tommy with the tacks, the Good Hands slide in Tommy as the referee comes to, so the referee only sees Dreamer bleeding. Its a solid old school Hardcore match but it was definitely a little too plodding and corny.
Yuya Uemura tries to make the save, then Darren McCarty jumps the railing. This really has turned into ECW, Bully gets a mic, asks him if he really wants to fight and tells security to let him go. LOL – a literal Hockey Fight. McCarty gets the best of things, Good Hands mug him from behind. Triple Powerbomb McCarty through the table.
Scott D’Amore’s music hits! Scott starts stripping like he’s Ric Flair. Bully calls down Scott, but Scott has backup. He calls Rino, Heath, Gresham, Baily and Joe Hendry. Good Hands try to attack Scott…Scott stops him…and HITS A CANADIAN DESTROYER! Can this lead to a Lethal Lockdown match? Team D’Amore versus Team Bully? Give me that…give me some Lethal Lockdown now!
Time Machine (Kushida, Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley) vs Rich Swann, Frankie Kazarian & Steve Maclin
Shelley and Swann start off, and its just a bit of chain wrestling. They both have Hammerlocks, Headlocks, and just twist around to try and find an angle. Shelley speeds things up a little, Shoulder Tackle, rope run, Swann goes down and Shelley puts on the brakes to sink in a quick STF but Rich grabs the rope. Kaz and Sabin tag in and we get some Battle of the Futures nostalgia.
Back and forth, Up and Over, Sabin with the Arm Drag into the Top Wristlock. Kaz fights through, a little more quick counters and fun stalemate spots as they are all having fun with each other. Kushida tags in and points to Maclin. Kaz slaps Maclin’s chest and we all know Maclin isn’t a fun loving babyface like Kaz and Swann, so the tone should start to change. Kushida starts by starting Grounded ala Inoki vs Ali, then manages to trip up Maclin and keep the mat wrestling going, but Maclin finally gets back to hit feet and can finally use his size and power to his advantage. Shelley blind tag, Time Splitters PK to the Arm combo.
Shelley keeps on the arm that got kicks with the Arm Wringer and then a few quick shots to the damaged arm. Kaz makes the blind tag after Maclin uses the middle rope into Shelley’s throat. Kaz and Rich with a little Hip Toss tandem stuff for a near fall on Shelley. But the tone of Rich and Kaz is definitely much different. Shelley fights his way out of the enemy corner, Time Machine triple team, Single Leg Crab, Camel Clutch, Sliding Dropkick from Sabin onto Rich. Kaz is trying to police too much of Maclin’s motion, typical team that doesn’t get along stuff. Rich driven into Kaz in the corner, triple Dropkicks from all of Time Machine.
Kushida tags in, stares down Maclin and then Maclin picks up and throws Rich to Time Machine because you can tell he’s frustrated getting policed with all of his moves. MCMG hold Rich, Kushida hits the Baseball Slide on the restrained wrestler and Kushida does the little Liger spin around pose/taunt and stares down Maclin. Shelley starts with the joint manipulation, and Swann is just getting torn apart. Swann in the Tree of Woe, Sliding Dropkick to Swann’s face, and then the Triple Baseball Slide. Sabin tags in with the Octopus Hold on Rich which he rolls into a pinfall, but Rich kicks out. You hear Maclin say “All you have to do is tag me bitch” – which proves that Maclin is trying to be a team player in his own way.
Rich fights out of the triple team, and chooses to tag in Kaz. Kaz hot tag, exchanges with Sabin which turns into the Guillotine Leg Drop through the ropes, Kaz is taking out everyone right now. Two Springboard Leg Drops…and now a third as all of the Time Machine offense is stopped. Sabin blind tag though gives Time Machine some momentum. Rich tries to come in, gets rocked, Maclin charges, Sabin grabs him and Tornado DDT sends Maclin to powder. Missile Dropkick/Flatliner on Kaz for 2.
Cradle Shock counter, rolling tag to Rich. Avalanche Headscissors, Rich goes to the top rope, Maclin tags himself in, but Time Machine gets rolling. Dragon Screw from Kushida with the Mutoh pose afterwards. Maclin and Shelley are legal, and going back and forth. Double Arm Breaker from Shelley after Kaz tries to get involved. Maclin gets some offense back in, Caught in the Crosshairs form Maclin, Maclin tags in Kaz, Kaz tags Rich, tandem attacks, Cutter form Rich into a 450…1-2-Kushida Kicks out! Swann goes for Phoenix Splash but misses. Flying Armbar from Kushida, triple Submission spot, but Maclin gets out of his and breaks Kushida’s submission. Maclin stares down Time Machine, hits the ropes and gets eaten alive by tandem attacks.
Time Machine goes for a Double Shiranui Tower, but it gets broken up. Outatime lands on Kaz. Sliced Bread lands on Swann. Tanaka Punch blocked, Maclin eats Shell Shock, Sabin gives Kushida a rolling start to throw him onto Maclin like a Spider Monkey and sink in the Hoverboard Lock. Maclin taps relatively quick, which is strategic to not risk injury.
Overall Score: 7/10
Talk about a show that no one knew what the hell to expect! Josh vacating the belt means that things had to change with fairly short notice. Mickie’s implications of either a Triple threat or she’ll hand over the belt to the winner if she’s not cleared is something you don’t see too often. But when it comes down to the card, the show was relatively good. Trey & Lince was hot garbage, and Busted Open was what we all kind of expected. Was it a bit more entertaining with some of the ECW nods? Sure. But it was just a spectacle and honestly Scott D’Amore hitting the Canadian Destroyer made that all worth it.
OH CANADA! @ScottDAmore CANADIAN DESTROYERS @TheJasonHotch and Windsor EXPLODES! #Sacrifice pic.twitter.com/iqqpiH0tMZ
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) March 25, 2023
The tag and six man matches were the best stuff on the card, and sets the stage decently well for storylines into Rebellion. I’m not joking though, if we don’t get Team D’Amore vs Team Bully in a Lethal Lockdown…the salt will pour. Don’t let the Canadian Destroyer spot be for naught! Oh – and put the damn belt on Maclin!
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Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Results & Report! (3/24/23)
It’s a family feud!
Wrestling really does have more than one royal family.
While Cody Rhodes is back on SmackDown to take on Ludwig Kaiser, Dominik Mysterio plans on confronting in his entire family in Las Vegas! Will Rey finally snap on his son?
- Cody Rhodes VS Ludwig Kaiser w/ Giovanni Vinci; Cody wins.
- Rey Mysterio VS LA Knight; Knight wins.
- WrestleMania Women’s Tag Team Showcase Qualifier: Lacey Evans & Xia Li VS Shotzi Blackheart & Natalya; Shotzi & Natalya win and advance to WrestleMania.
- “Butch” Pete Dunne w/ The Brawling Brutes VS GUNTER; Gunther wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Cody Rhodes VS Ludwig Kaiser w/ Giovanni Vinci!
The American Nightmare is back on SmackDown, looking to stay razor sharp for his match with the Tribal Chief. But will he get more than just a tune-up from the Impeccable German? Or will Kaiser keep the mat sacred?
The bell rings and the two circle. Fans rally up for “CODY! CODY!” Ludwig eggs Cody on, they tie up, and they’re in a deadlock. Cody powers Ludwig to a corner but Ludwig turns it around. Ludwig lets off, but throws a body shot! Ludwig whips, Cody reverses and reels Ludwig in to suplex! Fans fire up as Cody keeps Ludwig in the air, before the GOURD BUSTER! But wait, here comes Paul Heyman. Cody is distracted by the Wise Man, Ludwig waistlocks, but Cody trips Ludwig to then SHINING WIZARD! Ludwig bails out while Cody glances back at Heyman. Fans continue to rally for Cody while SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns and Cody staggers over to Ludwig. Ludwig UPPERCUTS then COMPLETE SHOTS! Cover, TWO! Ludwig scowls, and he rains down fists in a headlock! Fans boo but Ludwig lets off. Ludwig clamps onto Cody with a chinlock, then CLUBS him down. Fans boo as Ludwig goes outside to drag Cody to the corner, but Cody YANKS Ludwig into the post! Cody goes out to CHOP Ludwig, ROCKS him, and then CHOPS him against the announce desk! Cody rains down fists and fans fire up! Cody puts Ludwig back in the ring, runs and springboards, but Ludwig trips him up and YANKS him down!
Heyman is stoic as Ludwig sits Cody up to PENALTY KICK! Cover, TWO! Cody scowls but Ludwig looms over him. Ludwig pie faces Cody, drags him up but Cody ROCKS Ludwig and JABS and throws a body shot. Ludwig throat chops in return! Ludwig CHOKES Cody on the ropes, the ref counts and Ludwig lets off. Fans boo, but Vinci gets a cheap shot! Cover, TWO! Ludwig clamps back on with a chinlock. Cody endures, fans rally up, and Cody fights up to his feet. Ludwig throws Cody down by his hair! Fans boo more as Ludwig paces around and taunts Cody. Ludwig rains down more fists, then scrapes Cody’s face!
Ludwig runs to BASEMENT UPPERCUT! Cover, TWO! Heyman is still stoic as Cody drags himself to ropes. Ludwig kicks the ropes to jam Cody’s arm! Ludwig drags Cody up to UPPERCUT! Cody ROCKS Ludwig with forearm after forearm! Ludwig JAWBREAKERS! Ludwig throws body shots and stomps in the corner, whips corner to corner, then runs in, but Cody puts him on the apron! Cody ROCKS Ludwig, and BEAUTIFUL DISASTER KICKS Ludwig down! Fans fire up and Heyman is upset now. Ludwig staggers up into a kick, and Cody reels Ludwig in! Cody hooks the arms, but now SOLO SIKOA appears!
Fans boo as the Bloodline approaches, but Ludwig CHOP BLOCKS Cody’s leg! Solo and Heyman stay at the ramp as Ludwig goes out. Cody throws hands, whips, but Ludwig reverses and sends Cody crashing into steel steps! Fans boo but Cody drags himself up, and SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns again and Cody throws hands on Ludwig. Ludwig headlocks, Cody powers out and things speed up, but DOUBLE LARIATS take both men down! Solo & Heyman are now ringside as fans rally up. Vinci coaches Ludwig but Cody sits up first. They stand, Cody throws a body shot but Ludwig throws a haymaker. Cody throws a forearm, Ludwig gives it back, they go shot for shot, back and forth, faster and faster, and fans fire up! Ludwig kicks low, whips, but Cody reverses to then follow and CLOBBER Ludwig! Cody kicks, RHODES UPPERCUT! Cody then baits Ludwig, goes up and over in a corner, and POWERSLAMS! Cover, TWO!
Solo is stoic, Heyman smiles, but then Vinci throws in his track jacket. The ref gets that out of the way, but misses the HIGH LOW COMBO from Imperium! Cover, TWO!! Cody survives and Ludwig is surprised. Ludwig shouts “NEIN!” and runs in to UPPERCUT, GAMANGIRI and HALF HATCH SUPLEX! Ludwig goes up top, leaps, but into a dragon sleeper! But Ludwig drops to victory roll! TWO, and Cody dodges Ludwig to springboard, CODY CUTTER! Fans fire up as Cody stares down Heyman & Solo! Cody waits on Ludwig, reels him back in, CROSS RHODES!! Cover, Cody wins!
Winner: Cody Rhodes, by pinfall
The Impeccable German was less than perfect, and he loses to the American Nightmare! But Cody watches Solo get up on the apron and Heyman has the mic. Heyman has Solo stand down, and then tells Cody, “You’re owed an apology. And since I’m the Wise Man of the Bloodline, may I? I am going to be the one to deliver that apology to you.” The ring announcer did a lousy job. She must be from Vegas. Fans boo and Heyman acts surprised. But Heyman will do the honors. “Ladies and gentlemen! Your winner… and still challenger for the reigning! Defending! Undisputed! WWE Universal Heavyweight Champion, Roman Reigns… Cody! RRRRHODES!”
Fans are torn but Heyman says this is the very same Cody Rhodes that sees his Road to WrestleMania with a giant pothole in front of him that happens this Monday Night Raw, when Cody goes one versus one against… SOLO! And if, and isn’t that a big “if,” IF Cody survives Solo, then it’s not the Road to WrestleMania. All roads lead to Roman Reigns, who will be here live on SmackDown next Friday to see Cody one final time face to face. Heyman tosses the mic to Cody and he catches it. “Is that what we’re doing, Mr. Heyman? Are you moving the goal posts for me? Another thing you did, you interrupted them while they were singing the song.
“And now, you wanna move the goal posts and move ’em right here, huh? Am I expected to say ‘No?’ Oh, it’s six days out from the biggest match in the history of my family, I should probably say no, right? WELL, I probably shouldn’t have wrestled with half my body hanging off, and I still beat Seth Rollins! So when it comes to you,” he says as he points at Solo, “undefeated and as good as you are, like I said last week. You’re. Not. Ready!” Fans chant that, then Cody continues.
“And as for the champion, Roman Reigns. After Solo finds out that he’s not ready, at WrestleMania on April 2nd, your boy, Roman Reigns, the Undisputed WWE Universal Champion, will find out the same thing. He is not ready, either!” Cody throws the mic back and Heyman misses it! Will everything about this homestretch to Hollywood be a nightmare for The Bloodline?
BREAKING NEWS for WrestleMania!
The very first match of night one on Saturday, April 1st will be… AUSTIN THEORY VS JOHN CENA! The United States Championship will set the pace for the weekend, will The Now find that he’s not ready, either?
Charlotte Flair is here!
Vegas fires up as The Queen heads to the ring. The SmackDown Women’s Champion has her pyro then gets the mic to tell Las Vegas, “We are just eight days away from WrestleMania! Fourteen times. Fourteen time world champion. And I can tell you, that was not built on fear, insecurities or nepotism. The same three things have been used against me by everyone, and I mean everyone, since I started in this business.
“Fear. What is fear? Fear is a lack of understanding. It’s ignorance. This business wasn’t built on fear. This business was built on respect! Rhea Ripley, I don’t fear you. I respect you! The only thing that I fear is my own potential. I respected Nikki and Brie. I respect Sasha, Bayley, Becky, Trish, Ronda, Asuka, Natty! I respected all of them! Insecurities. Damn right I have insecurities! Are you really ‘whatting’ me? This is important to me so listen. Insecurities, damn right I have them. And I have built this house on every brick that all of you have thrown at me! For the last seven YEARS! Lastly, nepotism.” Fans “WOO~!”
“That’s right, Vegas. I love my dad. And I will never apologize for continuing the greatest legacy in sports entertainment! And whether you like it or don’t like it, you better learn to love it, because diamonds are forever, and so is Charlotte Flair. WOO~!” The Queen is fired up, but will she be able to hold her throne at WrestleMania?
Rey Mysterio VS LA Knight!
The King of Lucha Libre, the headliner of this year’s WWE Hall of Fame class, has been pushed and pushed and pushed by his punk of a son, and the Mega Star was one big mouth too far! Will Rey be able to shut up the obnoxious jerk that isn’t Dominik? Or will things only get worse for Rey on the Road to WrestleMania Weekend?
SmackDown returns and Knight makes his entrance. The bell rings and the two circle. Knight chases Rey but Rey dodges and fires off hands! Knight shoves Rey away, but Rey slides under and dropkicks Knight to a corner. Rey runs in but Knight fights off the monkey flip. But Rey avoids the elbow drop! Rey runs in, and now he MONKEY FLIPS! Knight staggers up,. Rey KICKS Knight to a corner, and then rains down fists! Fans count all the way to TEN, then Rey gives us some Latino Heat. Rey runs, but Knight FLAPJACKS him down! Knight stomps Rey, stomps him to ropes, but the ref counts.
Knight lets off, “YEAH!” Then he bumps Rey off a buckle. Knight throws hands, JABS Rey, then digs his boots in. The ref counts, Knight lets off at 4, and Knight brings Rey up. Knight shoves Rey into the corner, Rey bounces off buckles, and into the NECKBREAKER! Knight spells it out, “L! A! KNIGHT! YEAH!” Cover, ONE!! Knight is annoyed and he throws fists down. Knight keeps on Rey, throws hands, then he bumps Rey off buckles. Fans rally and duel, but Knight whips Rey to ropes. Rey ducks ‘n’ dodges then tilt-o-whirls to RANA! Knight flounders out of the ring and fans fire up!
Rey runs, WRECKS Knight with a dropkick, then he builds speed. Rey SLIDES to SPLASH! Fans fire up for that one, and Rey stalks Knight to CLUB him! Rey puts Knight in the ring, climbs up and shoulders in! Then he GAMANGIRIS Knight away, climbs the corner, but here comes Dom! Dom said he’d ruin the fun, and Knight trips Rey up! Rey tumbles to the mat, but Dom doesn’t care. Fans boo as Dom walks down the ramp while SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns again and Knight stomps away on Rey again. Knight drags Rey up but Rey throws hands! Rey fires off but Knight knees low! Knight scoops, Rey slips off and rolls Knight up, to then dropkick! Fans fire up while Knight scrambles around. Knight goes after Rey, Rey slips under and runs, but into a BOOT! Cover, TWO! Dom paces at ringside, and Knight sits Rey up to KNEE him in the back! Knight drags Rey up, back suplexes high and hard, then dusts off his hands. “YEAH!” Knight grins as he stands over Rey, then he pulls on the mask. The ref reprimands, Knight whips Rey to ropes, but Rey ducks ‘n’ dodges!
Rey CROSSBODIES, but Knight catches him for a POWERSLAM! Dom smirks while Knight spells it out again. “L! A! KNIGHT! YEAH!” But Rey avoids the elbow drop! Rey and Knight slowly stand up, Rey goes to ropes and Knight storms over, but into an elbow! Rey springboards, wheelbarrows and BULLDOGS! Dom is annoyed but Rey goes to the apron. Rey climbs up, SEATED SENTONS! And Rey keeps moving, SPRINGBOARD CROSSBODY! Cover, TWO! Knight is still in this but Rey brings him up to whip him to ropes. Knight reverses, kicks low and back suplexes, but Rey lands on his feet! Tilt-o-whirl, but Knight blocks to a BACKPACK SLAM! Cover, TWO!
Knight grows frustrated but he drags Rey back up. Fans rally for “619! 619!” as Knight scoops, but Rey turns slam into DDT! Rey then dropkicks Knight onto the ropes! Fans fire up, Rey dials it up, 619 BLOCKED by Knight! Knight grins, lifts Rey up, but Rey RANAS free! Rey redials, but Dom trips him up!! Fans boo and Rey is furious! He can’t believe Dom is doing this now, but Knight rolls Rey up! KNIGHT WINS!!
Winner: LA Knight, by pinfall
Dom smiles because he just screwed his dad over. Dom gets the mic and tells, “Jefe… You gonna give me what I want? Huh? C’mon. C’mon Or are you gonna run away? Or are you gonna finally be a man and face me at WrestleMania?” Dom pushes Rey, and Rey brings down the straps. To wag his finger, “No.” Dom says, “That’s right. Walk away like you always do. Hey, mom. How does it feel to be married to such a pathetic loser? A coward who can’t even stand up to his own son?” Fans boo but then Dom points out the rest of the family. He asks if mom knew she married a deadbeat.
She did, because here’s why. She sat there every night while Rey abandoned Dom, sot hat makes her no better! His sister steps up now, and Dom asks Aalyah what she’s gonna do about it. She’s too stupid to understand this. Mom Angie snatches the mic from Dom but Dom snatches it back to tell her to shut up! Rey storms back over and fans fire up! Dom dares Rey to do something, and Rey DECKS Dom!! Dom is shocked but Vegas is thunderous! Rey tells Dom that Dom pushed him to do this. Rey doesn’t wanna do this but Dom gave him no choice! You do not disrespect your mother like that! That is Rey’s wife!
Dom wanted a fight at Mania? Then he’s on!! Fans are thunderous again as Rey says, “I’ll see you at WrestleMania, son.” Dom scurries away, having gotten what he wanted like the brat he is. But will Dom come to regret everything he’s done these past few months?
WrestleMania Women’s Tag Team Showcase Qualifier: Lacey Evans & Xia Li VS Shotzi Blackheart & Natalya!
The Model Soldier teams with The Predator to take on the Wild Child and the Queen of Harts! Liv Morgan & Raquel Rodriguez are watching ringside, who will they see join them in this Fatal 4 Way tag team showcase?
The teams sort out, Shotzi and Lacey start. Fans rally as Shotzi and Lacey circle, then Shotzi gets around to a waistlock. Shotzi ripcords, wrenches and wristlocks but Lacey throws Shotzi by her hair! Cover, TWO! Lacey drags Shotzi up and fans rally as Lacey whips her to the corner. Lacey RAMS into Shotzi, tags Xia, and then mocks the fans. Xia stomps Shotzi, brings her up to CHOP, then taunts Natty. Xia runs in to KNEE and ELBOW Shotzi, then reels her in for an EXPLODER! Cover, TWO! Natty rallies the fans behind Shotzi but Lacey tells them to shut up. Xia bumps Shotzi off buckles and tags in Lacey.
Lacey mocks the fans, then runs to headstand and BRONCO BUSTER! Lacey drags Shotzi up, snapmares and then dribbles Shotzi’s face off the mat! Cover, TWO! Fans rally but Lacey drags Shotzi up. Shotzi throws hands, kicks but Lacey blocks to trip her up! Lacey then sucker punches Natty! Fans boo but Shotzi rolls Lacey up! TWO and Shotzi ENZIGURIS Lacey down! But Natty is still off the corner so Shotzi has to BOOT Lacey away! Shotzi runs but Lacey CLOBBERS her! Cover, TWO! Fans rally up but Lacey tags Xia. Lacey & Xia drag Shotzi up, double whip but Shotzi KICKS Xia and JAWBREAKERS Lacey!
Xia waistlocks Shotzi, Lacey storms up, but Shotzi slips free and the WOMAN’S RIGHT takes out Xia!! Lacey is furious, but Shotzi whips her out of the ring! Shotzi swings on Lacey, Lacey counter punches, but Natty is back! Natty BOOTS Lacey, then Shotzi DIVES to take Lacey down! Fans fire up as Shotzi hurries back in and tags Natty! HART ATTACK! And then the SHARPSHOOTER! Xia taps, Natty & Shotzi win!
Winners: Shotzi Blackheart & Natalya, by pinfall (advance to WrestleMania)
Two hearts and a lot of fire, these two make it through! But wait, here come Ronda & Shayna! Shayna says, “Look at all the history in the ring right now! I mean, each single one of those women has a reason to want to get revenge on us, right? Let’s look. Broken hand, broken nose, broken arm, broken spirit. What do you say we uh… Give them the opportunity tonight?” Fans fire up as the Baddest Women on the Planet step up, but then Ronda says, “Wait, Shay-Bayz. I’ve got a question for you. How many times have we sold out this exact arena?” A couple times. And what about this entire town? A couple more times.
And how much did they appreciate it? ZERO TIMES! These two have given Vegas more than it deserves, so never again! And certainly not tonight. Shayna agrees with that. But lucky for the others, or maybe unlucky, these two are here to let them know, they’re in the tag team showcase! WrestleMania may be taking place in Hollywood, but the stakes just got raised like here in Vegas! Who wins when the odds are not in their favor?
Drew McIntyre heads to the ring.
Vegas fires up as the Scottish Warrior, Celtic Warrior and Der Ring General are about to converge for a contract signing! The Triple Threat for the Intercontinental Championship isn’t until WrestleMania, but will things break down on SmackDown?
SmackDown returns and Adam Pearce is in the ring to welcome us to this contract signing. But before he can introduce McIntyre, Sheamus and the Brawling Brutes make their way out! “Las Vegas, what’s the crack?” Sheamus says everyone’s been asking why he’s so mad at McIntyre. Imagine this: imagine working 15 YEARS of your life to achieve a particular goal; now imagine telling your best friend about that goal, only for him to go behind your back to try and steal it away from you. Imagine that friend being someone you let sleep and live on your couch, that you brought to his first training session in this business!
McIntyre rolls his eyes as Sheamus has said a lot of this before. Sheamus says, “Now imagine getting the opportunity to smash that person’s face in on the Grandest Stage of Them All, because they’re nothing but a backstabbing-” McIntyre says, “Imagine shutting up for a second. Every week, you run your mouth, you try to give me this guilt trip, trying to make me feel bad. And if it’s not on SmackDown, it’s on social medial with your little gifs and memes you create, blow up my Twitter like a teenage girl. It’s embarrassing, mate!”
McIntyre says last week, they were in this ring, proving why they are the most physical superstars in the WWE! They beat the hell out of each other! And afterwards, they should’ve been in the bar, laughing about it. That’s what they did in the old times. But now, Sheamus is so sensitive, he has this temper, that Sheamus can’t separate personal and business. Sheamus says McIntyre made this personal! McIntyre has a lot he’d love to say but he’ll stick to facts. And the facts are: McIntyre has beaten Sheamus, and he KNOWS he can beat Gunther. And history has shown that Sheamus can’t. Fans fire up as the two stare down.
Pearce has both men stand down because in order to get to WrestleMania, he needs three signatures on the contract. So how about we get the first two taken care of now? McIntyre takes the pen, signs his part, and then hands things over to Sheamus. Sheamus takes another pen, he signs his part, and then McIntyre throws his pen to the crowd as a free souvenir. And here comes GUNTHER! Gunther storms right into the ring, he gets right in Pearce’s face, and he tells Pearce to justify this decision. Justify why Gunther is in a match where the other two can pin or submit the other and Gunther still loses his title. Justify it! JUSTIFY IT!!
Pearce has Gunther calm down now, and Gunther signs his part. Is Pearce happy now? Whatever he has to do to defend HIS title at WrestleMania will be justified. Gunther will beat McIntyre. He will beat Sheamus. And if he has to, he’ll beat up Ridge and- What is Dunne looking at him like that for? DUNNE JUMPS THE TABLE TO GET AT GUNTHER!! Fans go wild as Butch goes wild! Ridge drags Dunne away, Gunther TOSSES the table! Gunther gets in Pearce’s face and Gunther wants a match! Pearce says okay, just calm down! Is Der Ring General about to break the Bruiserweight?
“Butch” Pete Dunne w/ The Brawling Brutes VS GUNTER!
SmackDown returns, and Gunther has Dunne on the ropes. Dunne pulls on Gunther’s ears! Then CHOPS and CHOPS and CHOPS! Dunne runs, but into a BOOT! Gunther drags Dunne up, scoops and SLAMS him, then sits him up to PENALTY KICK! Dunne kicks back from below! Dunne forearms, CHOPS, SLAPS and then jumps on for a a DOUBLE WRISTLOCK! Gunther throws body shots and then shifts Dunne around into a BUTTERFLY SUPLEX! Fans fire up while Gunther paces around Dunne. Gunther kicks Dunne in the side, he taunts Sheamus, then he stomps Dunne down.
Gunther brings Dunne up but Dunne throws body shots! Dunne forearms, but Gunther CHOPS Dunne off his feet! Even McIntyre is feeling that one. Gunther drags Dunne up, and CHOPS him right back down! But Gunther holds onto the wrist and he brings Dunne up again. Gunther CHOPS Dunne inside-out! Gunther still holds the wrist and he gives toying kicks to Dunne while taunting Sheamus. Gunther ripcords, but Dunne uses that for a TRIANGLE HOLD! Gunther CHOPS Dunne down, into a BOSTON CRAB! Dunne endures, Sheamus and Ridge coach Dunne, and Dunne fights, only for Gunther to shift to an STF!
Dunne still endures, even as Gunther bends him back. Dunne pries free, wrenches the arm and bends the fingers! Gunther pulls hair, then CHOPS Dunne down! Gunther drags Dunne back up but Dunne ENZIGURIS! And ENZIGURIS again! Gunther wobbles, blocks the third enziguri and deadlift GERMAN SUPLEXES! Dunne goes to a corner, Gunther hauls him up onto the top rope to CHOP! Gunther climbs up and he STANDS on Dunne! Dunne endures and the ref counts, Gunther lets off and Dunne tumbles to the floor! Sheamus checks on Dunne, Gunther stands tall, and SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns again and Gunther has Dunne on the ropes. Gunther taunts Sheamus, but Dunne catches his Beats of the Bodhrain! Fans fire up as Dunne bends the fingers, and SNAPS them!! Gunther staggers away, Dunne runs in to fire forearms! GAMANGIRI! Gunther staggers, Dunne goes up and fans chant for the “BRUISERWEIGHT! BRUISERWEIGHT!” as Dunne DOUBLE STOMPS the arm! Dunne waistlocks, but Gunther switches and puts on a SLEEPER! Dunne drops down, but powers up and he pries at the hold! Gunther holds on tight, Dunne reaches for ropes, and fans rally up, ROPEBREAK!
Gunther SLAPS the arms down, GERMAN SUPLEXEs, but Dunne lands on his feet! BUZZSAW! Gunther bails out and McIntyre smirks. Dunne goes to the apron but Gunther avoids the moonsault! Gunther CHOPS Dunne, and Dunne tumbles onto the desk! Gunther turns around to see Sheamus and McIntyre, but Dunne runs in! Gunther sends him into McIntyre! Gunther BOOTS Dunne into the ring! But Dunne STOMPS the hands and BUZZSAWS Gunther! Fans fire up, but McIntyre is on the apron! Sheamus drags McIntyre down! GLASGOW KISS from McIntyre! Ridge goes after McIntyre but McIntyre POSTS him!
Sheamus KNEES McIntyre down! Dunne runs in at Gunther, into a LARIAT!! Gunther drags Dunne up, scoops for the LAST SYMPHONY!! Cover, Gunther wins!!
Winner: Gunther, by pinfall
Der Ring General used his enemies against each other, but The Fella stands back up. They both look at the WrestleMania sign, but Sheamus gets out of the way! CLAYMORE hits Gunther!! Fans fire up as Sheamus and McIntyre stare down now, will either of these men come away the NEW Intercontinental Champion in Hollywood? Or will Gunther use them against each other then like he did tonight?
The Street Profits are fired up backstage.
Montez Ford says that Intercontinental Championship Triple Threat is bound to be a banger. But he says there’s one thing bigger than that. Angelo Dawkins asks what, and Ford says THEIR tag team showcase. Alpha Academy, Viking Raiders, Braun Strowman & Ricochet, but wait. What do they have in common? Ford motions to the top of the head. Oh, right. They’re “smooth operators~.” But then Braun & Ricochet walk in. Real funny, guys. Y’all got jokes, huh? They got a problem with bald men? They don’t have a lot of room to talk, Dawkins is thinning up top. Whoa, fam, c’mon. Just jokes! Just playing. Well no one’s laughing.
Dawkins is just saying, Braun & Ricochet aren’t much of a tag team. Oh, well, we’ll see who’s playing when Ricochet & Braun show up and the other three teams fool around and find out. They want ALL that smoke. Well, okay, okay. Everyone is fired up for WrestleMania, but who wins the tag team showcase at the Showcase of the Immortals?
It’s the SmackDown return of the Kevin Owens Show!
And as such, Kevin Owens himself is headed to the ring. His guest will be Sami Zayn, but what will the Prizefighter and Great Liberator have to say about their coming Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championship match? We’ll see, after the break.
SmackDown returns one more time and Kevin has his set and his mic. He thanks the ring announcer for the introduction, and then welcomes us back to the KO Show. Now please welcome his guest, tag team partner, friend and brother, the one and only Sami Zayn! Sami makes his entrance and the fans fire up again. Sami gets a mic and Kevin says, “Yeah, so I did it right? The way you wanted. It worked out?” Sami asks what Kevin means. Well, he brought Sami out with the big introduction like he wanted. It was good, right? Sami says he didn’t want a big introduction, this is Kevin’s show, and Sami’s the guest.
Yeah, but earlier, Kevin suggested they come out as co-hosts but Sami said they should make separate entrances so the fans can hear both of their songs and cheer for both of them. Which really means Sami wanted his own pop. Sami says he did not, but Kevin says it’s fine, the fans love him! Kevin gets it. Fans do cheer for “SAMI! SAMI!” Kevin sits, Sami asks if they need to spill more backstage secrets, or can they just get to business? Yeah, of course. Sami says more than anyone, he’s been going non-stop about taking down Roman, the Usos, the Bloodline. And even Sami has lost sight of the fact that, does Kevin realize what they’re on the verge of doing?
“After all these years, from where we started, from nothing, staring together in Montreal all those years ago, we are on the verge of winning the WWE Undisputed Tag Team Championships! We are on the verge of doing that together, at WrestleMania! And not just any WrestleMania. This year, I don’t know what it is, but WrestleMania feels different this year.” Kevin says that’s right. And it isn’t lost on him. He knows what they can accomplish. But Sami is right, WrestleMania does feel different this year. Which is why Kevin brought Sami out here. Kevin has something for Sami.
Now, remember a few months ago, after Roman gave Sami that Honorary Uce shirt, that Kevin said Sami needed a new one. Kevin has one, it’s a KO-Mania Goes Hollywood shirt. That’s great! Well yes, but this is the back of it. Kevin does KO-Mania every year. But this year is different. This year isn’t about KO-Mania. “This year, there is only one person who took WWE by storm, who caught fire like no one else. There’s only one person that people can look at and say, ‘That guy has been the MVP of the WWE for the last 12 months,’ and that person is you,” Sami. Fans chant “MVP! MVP!” and Sami is rather touched.
Kevin says this year, it isn’t KO-Mania. It’s about the other side of the shirt. Kevin hands it over, Sami turns it around, and he sees… WrestleZAYNIA!! Sami’s all fired up now! Kevin shows that he’s been wearing one the whole time! Sami loves it! He throws off his shirt to put on the new shirt! Sami wants a hug but Kevin says no, one hug a year. Aw what the heck? THEY HUG! But then THE USOS attack!! They blindside KO & Sami from the crowd side, and then Jimmy rains down fists on Kevin while Jey rains down fists on Sami! Fans boo while the Usos clear the ring of the chairs. DOUBLE SUPERKICKS for Kevin!
Jey drags Sami up, whips him to ropes, and the Usos hit ONE AND DONE!! The fans boo more but Kevin gets up with a steel chair! The Usos run for it, telling KO & Sami that they’re going down! Kevin beats an armchair with the steel chair, but Sami tells the Usos that they’re not getting away with this one. Will Jimmy & Jey ruin the first ever WrestleZaynia? Or will KO & Sami be the ones to finally stop the ones?
A great episode for SmackDown here, especially with the story developments. For one, great closing moment we just saw with a great KO Show. I love that we got a positive swerve where Kevin gave Sami a shirt that had a WrestleZaynia logo on it. But I should’ve figured the Bloodline would do something, and the Usos technically stand tall here. That math would suggest the Usos are losing at WrestleMania, and we finally get so much in that moment, from vindication for Sami to the WWE Grand Slam for Kevin. We also got a really good match out of Cody VS Ludwig that Cody of course wins, and a really good promo segment right after for Cody and Heyman. The Bloodline is definitely desperate to hold onto everything, but that could be what brings them down.
Fairly big news with Theory VS Cena opening WrestleMania Night One. I’ve said before that it just feels like Theory is gonna win, since Cena doesn’t need the US title, and isn’t gonna be sticking around long enough to do anything with the US title. So if Theory wins the first match of the weekend, I could see him boasting, bragging and partying the entire weekend until he is just insufferable and annoys someone into challenging him for that title on the Raw After Mania. And then a pretty good promo from Charlotte, and I did like her calling out the “WHAT” chants here. Stone Cold Steve Austin is timeless, but lemming fans throwing out “WHAT” just to throw out ‘WHAT” are what? Stupid, that’s what. A) Show respect and pay attention. B) Come up with something of your own.
Really good match from Rey VS Knight, but of course Dom distracts to cost Rey. But biggest of all from that segment, the moment fans have wanted for the last few weeks now: REY DECKS DOM! And now we’ll get Rey VS Dom, and Dom sold all the emotion after that perfectly. He was upset, but there was also the fear and realization that comes with seeing something he thought would never happen actually happening. His dad is gonna whoop him, because Dom will only have Priest by his side while Finn prepares for Edge and Rhea prepares for Charlotte. And Legado can make a heroic move by countering Priest so that Rey VS Dom has a fair finish.
Good promo from Profits, Braun & Ricochet to put some tension between those teams going into the men’s Fatal 4. Good tag match qualifier for the women’s Fatal 4, and it was good weaving of stories that Shotzi & Natty win. Shayna & Ronda get that “first round bye” right into the match, but it does work because all four Faces want payback on them. It might not even matter who the fourth team is (though I’m sure it’ll be a team from Raw), Ronda & Shayna are probably gonna tear into them all to win and essentially be #1 contenders to the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships.
And there was just so much great stuff in the Intercontinental Championship contract signing. Sheamus brought back the same stuff he said when he and McIntyre had their 1v1 feud last year but that makes sense, it is how people can be when they argue with friends and family. I feel like McIntyre was tempted to Steiner Math because this is a Triple Threat, and he knows he can beat Sheamus. Gunther was also great, and I love that “Butch” Dunne went right after Gunther over their NXT UK past. Gunther VS Dunne was great stuff to have just for the hell of it, but of course there was the usual misunderstanding shenanigans that helped Gunther win.
If Gunther somehow retains at Mania, can we have HHH get Trent Seven back in WWE so we can have British Strong Style VS Imperium for the Summer? There were fans in Vegas who remembered Dunne for being Dunne and not for being a sidekick, and all fans deserve to see that Dunne alongside Tyler Bate and Trent Seven.
My Score: 8.8/10
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