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Mitchell’s WWE NXT Results & Report! (2/22/22)

A new challenger will be named!

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Who moves on to challenge Bron Breakker for the NXT Championship?

For the first time ever, Dolph Ziggler wrestles on NXT! But will he be #1 contender after facing the blackhearted Tommaso Ciampa?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • LA Knight VS Grayson Waller w/ Sanga; Waller wins.
  • 2022 Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Io Shirai & Kay Lee Ray VS Amari Miller & Lash Legend; Shirai & KLR win and advance.
  • Dante Chen VS Duke Hudson; Hudson wins.
  • Cameron Grimes VS Trick Williams w/ Carmelo Hayes; Grimes wins.
  • Nikkita Lyons VS Kayla Inlay; Lyons wins.
  • 2022 Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter VS Ivy Nile & Tatum Paxley; Kacy & Kayden win and advance.
  • NXT Championship #1 Contender’s Match: Tommaso Ciampa VS Dolph Ziggler; Ziggler wins and will challenge Bron Breakker for the title.

PLAY BY PLAY

Bron Breakker heads to the ring!

The Big Booty Nephew is still NXT Champion, even as Dolph Ziggler tried to help Santos Escobar last week in the main event of Vengeance Day. Bron gets a mic as fans bark, and he says, “Vengeance Day was a tough fight, and Santos Escobar is a tough opponent. But I proved to everybody that over my dead body will someone take this championship away from me!” And he can’t think of a better weekend than WrestleMania weekend. NXT goes on the road, Stand & Deliver will be in Dallas, Texas! Bron is giving everyone a heads up so that the fan scan be as loud there as they are here in Orlando!

Bron promises to walk into that weekend NXT Champion, and walk out still NXT Champion! As far as tonight’s main event goes- Well, here comes Ziggler! “Congrats, kid. Congratulations on your first NXT title defense. You never forget your first.” But here’s some advice. Ziggler knows he’s not champ yet, but Bron can’t be making promises you can’t keep. Stand & Deliver is a long way’s away. Bron is going to make it there, but will he make it as champ? Ziggler doesn’t think so. Laugh it up but Ziggler vows to stomp out the last few breaths inside Ciampa. Then maybe tonight, next week, or maybe Ziggler carries Bron’s ass to Stand & Deliver. He can, he does cardio.

But just know that when Ziggler decides that title will be his, that title will be his. Bron says he owes Ziggler a receipt for that kick last week. So bring your skinny ass to the ring! Oh right, that superkick was on the button, huh? But seven to ten business days, Bron gets the taste back in his mouth. That’ll be nice, right? Ziggler says Bron is a hot head, but he likes that. It isn’t Bron’s fault, it’s in his genes. Not just that Canadian tuxedo he’s wearing. Bron says he’s not paid to dress-up, he’s paid to kick ass! Ziggler knows Bron is the champ, Bron is the guy, in Orlando. But make no mistake, Ziggler showing up made him the biggest star in NXT.

So tonight, Bron gets the night off. Ziggler says Bron will sit in the back, no cheap shots, he’s barred from ringside in the main event! No monkey see, monkey do, no receipts. Bron sits on his as sand watches Ziggler do what he does better than anyone else in this business! But will the Show-Off see this show off as the new #1 contender? Or will the Psycho Killer be one step closer to getting Goldie back?

 

LA Knight VS Grayson Waller w/ Sanga!

Turns out the restraining order was a bust and now nothing is in the way of the Million Dollar Megastar getting at the 21st Century Success Story! That is, if Sanga the human insurance policy behaves in the corner. Will Knight show Waller what this is his game, yeah?!

The bell rings and Waller bails out! Fans boo but Knight stays in the ring as Waller swaggers right next to Sanga. The ring count climbs, Knight goes out after Waller but Waller gets back in. Knight goes around the way and gets back in ,but Waller gets back out. Knight pursues, they go back in the ring, and Knight dodges to CLOBBER Waller! Knight kicks Waller around, puts him on ropes, and then goes out to KNEE Waller back in! Slingshot SHOULDER TACKLE! Waller goes to a corner, Knight storms over but Waller YANKS him into buckles! Waller cravats Knight and KNEES him down! Waller then goes up the corner, but Knight gets under the jump!

Knight tosses Waller onto the top rope! Waller is stuck straddling, and Knight bounces the rope to add on! Knight then runs to BLAST Waller to the floor! Fans fire up with Knight as NXT goes picture in picture.

Sanga goes over to check on Waller as the ring count climbs. Waller sputters and crawls to the ring. Knight goes right out to ROCK Waller! Knight brings Waller around and bumps him off the apron, then follows him around the way. They end up by the ramp, Knight puts Waller in. Knight CLUBS Waller on the apron, Knight stalks behind him and reels him in for a short arm LARIAT! Cover, TWO! Knight throws hands on Waller as they go to the corner. Knight throws body shots, snapmares Waller and then drops a knee. Knight clamps on a chinlock and he squeezes tight. Waller endures but Knight leans his weight on the hold.

Waller fight sup, fights out and then DECKS Knight! Waller has Knight in a corner for forearms, then he whips Knight to ropes. Knight reveres but Waller sunset flips! Knight stays up to sit on the cover, TWO! Waller CLOBBERS Knight! Cover, TWO! Waller is annoyed but he JAMS his knee into Knight’s back. Waller then JAMS his elbow into Knight’s forehead, and then traps the arms as part of the neck wrench. Knight endures, fans rally up, but Waller pushes on the neck wrench even more. Knight starts to fight up but Waller throws him down! Waller keeps on the neck wrench but Knight fights up and throws body shots!

NXT is single picture as Knight scoops but Waller slips free. Knight arm-drags Waller out of the ring! Knight goes out, tells Sanga to stay back, but Waller RAMS Knight into steel steps! Knight clutches his shoulder but Waller rains down forearms on him! Waller soaks up the heat, puts Knight back in, and then covers. TWO, and fans chant, “You Still Suck!” at Waller. Waller CLUBS Knight, stomps away on him, then pushes him down. Waller jams elbows into the shoulders while fans tell him what they think of him. Waller snap suplexes Knight, then he goes up the corner. Waller walks on the rope, BALLER ELBOW DROP! Cover, TWO!

Fans rally for Knight but Waller stomps him down. Waller puts Knight on the ropes and chokes him! The ref counts, Waller lets off at 4 and Knight sputters. Waller CLUBS Knight, brings him up, then whips to CLOBBER Knight with an elbow! Cover, TWO! Waller keeps his cool as he puts Knight in a corner. Waller puts Knight’s head against buckles, then goes out to KICK the buckle! Knight gets jammed and Waller gets in. Waller brings Knight up but Knight throws body shots. Waller CLUBS Knight, then gets him up for a WIDOWMAKER! Cover, TWO! Knight is still in this and Waller gets frustrated.

Waller goes out, has Sanga give him some room, and Waller runs in to somersault and jump, into a BIG back suplex! Fans are fired up as Knight gets up and counter punches Waller! Knight fires off haymakers, whips, but Waller reverses, only for Knight to FLYING SHOULDER! Knight whips to BACK DROP Waller! Knight stomps a mudhole into Waller, “YEAH! YEAH! YEAH!” Knight lets off at 4 to whip Waller corner to corner, and then JUMPING NECKBREAKER! Fans fire up as Knight waits on Waller, but Sanga holds Waller’s arm! Waller slips out of the BFT! Cover, Waller has tights! Waller wins!!

Winner: Grayson Waller, by pinfall

But Knight goes after Waller! Sanga runs in but Knight sends him into the corner! Kick and B F T! Sanga is down, Waller panics. Waller swings but into a B F T! Knight may not have gotten the win, but he gets the last word! Will LA Knight make sure he’s the last man standing when this is all said and done?

 

Dakota Kai is searching around backstage.

And she finds Wendy Choo napping. Uh, they’re in the Women’s Dusty Cup! Why didn’t she tell her? Wendy says she can’t find anywhere good to sleep in this place. If she doesn’t get her midday beauty sleep, she doesn’t look this good. But yes, sorry she forgot to tell her. She told Dakota’s invisible friend. Who? What? Wendy, you’re a nice girl, but Dakota’s track record is not good. She tried it once, didn’t work out (Tegan Nox). Tried it again, didn’t work out (Raquel). Well she’s never had Wendy as a partner. So see ya! Dakota can’t believe Wendy chose Dakota. Maybe third time is the charm? Or maybe not. Only time will tell!

 

Raquel Gonzalez meets up with Cora Jade.

What’re they doing out here? For the past week, they’ve trained Raquel’s way. Yeah, how does Cora feel? Extremely SORE. But now, they’ll do things Cora’s way. That is why they’re at Tree Trek Adventure Park! They’ll work on being fearless risk takers! But heights…? Raquel can do heights, cuz she is the height. No, that’s different. She catches people from heights, she doesn’t fall from them. Well now she does. Remember: fearless. Cora helps Raquel make it over the log bridge, but that’s just part one. There are swings, blank walls, tunnels, and repelling. Raquel somehow makes it through those, but there’s one more thing: ZIPLINE!

Cora wants Raquel to trust her, and Raquel says she does trust Cora. Just not the zipline! Don’t worry! They’ll zip the lines, zip through the tournament and take those tag titles! Alright, let’s do this. And away they go! Raquel seems to actually like this one! What a rush! Not so bad, huh? Cora helped Raquel get over her fear, and now they’ll conquer the Dusty Cup.

 

Toxic Attraction are in their Toxic Lounge.

McKenzie Mitchell interviews them, and admits this is quite the set up. Jacy Jayne says, “Well, duh.” And they’ll be right here to watch the entire Dusty Cup tournament. But how cute were Cora and Raquel? Aww. Where are they gonna go next? A skate park? A motorcycle rally? But while those two are the favorites, Jacy feels those two are gonna come up short. McKenzie puts out the other favorite is the team of Io Shirai & Kay Lee Ray. Mandy Rose gives KLR and Io a lot of credit for realizing they’ll never be THE Women’s Champion with Mandy around.

“But if those two losers think they can win the entire tournament, and then beat Gigi & Jacy, aww…. They’re a lot dumber than they look.” Well, speak her name and she will appear! The Scary Queen of Scots heads out, because she and the Evil Genius are kicking things off! Will they make sure to shut up Mandy right here and now?

2022 Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Io Shirai & Kay Lee Ray VS Amari Miller & Lash Legend!

The teams sort out, Shirai starts against the hostess with the mostess, and they tie right up. Lash shakes her head, scoops, but Shirai slips out. Lash runs Shirai over, and then the trash talk starts. Shirai runs but Lash gets her hair! Lash reels Shirai in, back suplexes but Shirai slips out. Shirai tilt-o-whirls and headscissors Lash onto ropes, for a 619! Shirai then springboards but Lash catches her and throws forearms! Shirai kicks back, goes out and up the corner, to then missile dropkick Lash down! Shirai kips up, fans fire up and Lash backs up. Amari tags in, but Shirai goes Matrix! Amari sweeps the arms out, but misses the elbow drop!

Shirai FLAPJACKS Amari, then tags in KLR! Shirai snapmares Amari for KLR’s PENALTY KICK! Shirai adds a basement dropkick, KLR covers, TWO! KLR keeps on Amari with a wrench and CHOP! And another CHOP! And then another wrench for a suplex, but Amari counters with a cradle! TWO, HEEL KICK from Amari! Amari hurries, Lash tags back in. Fans rally for KLR but Lash BOOTS her down! Lash looms over KLR, drags her up, then reels her in, KLR ducks to SUPERKICK! KLR hooks Lash up, K L R BOMB! Tag to Shirai, KLR goes up to MOONSAULT! KLR DECKS Amari, Shirai is up top, OVER THE MOONSAULT! Cover, Shirai & KLR win!

Winners: Io Shirai & Kay Lee Ray, by pinfall (advance to the second round)

Toxic Attraction is not impressed, but the fan favorite is moving forward! Will Shirai & KLR make Toxic Attraction take them seriously when they win the whole thing?

 

Backstage interview with Dante Chen.

The Singaporean Warrior gets what he wants: a match with Duke Hudson. Duke thinks he’s a big shot, trying to end Chen’s career. That attack while he was being held by refs, then a lot of big talk while Chen was away. But Chen is back. Last week might’ve been Vengeance Day, but tonight, Chen will get his vengeance. It’ll be hard for Duke to sweep Persia off her feet when he doesn’t have a leg to stand on. Will the Singaporean Warrior make Duke regret dealing this hand?

 

Josh Briggs and Brooks Jensen talk backstage.

Well, Brooks is in “The Zone,” but they can get him back on the horse. And how do they do that? With a video for a dating app! Just trust Briggs, this will work. Just don’t say anything stupid. Rolling, be yourself! Brooks introduces himself as Briggs, which is, well, stupid. Brooks tries again, but with too much energy. They’re yelling at each other about yelling. Brooks tries again, and keeps it simple: “Hi, I’m Brooks Jensen,” and a big smile. Will that get him any swipes or matches or whatever?

 

Dante Chen VS Duke Hudson!

Chen attacks Duke on the ramp! He’s not waiting for his payback, but will he bust playing it this aggressively?

Duke kicks Chen away, Chen gets back in and the bell rings! Chen runs in to SPLASH, and then fires off hands! Duke throws Chen out but Chen drags him out to the apron! Chen has a leg and he SMASHES it on the apron! Duke scrambles but Chen brings him over to SLAM the leg into a post! Fans fire up for Chen as he goes for the leg again. Duke YANKS Chen into the post in return! Fans boo, Duke drags Chen through the ropes but Chen throws body shots. Chen throws haymakers, then boots Duke’s punch to BOOT Duke! Chen ducks and dodges to FLYING FOREARM! Chen hits a NECKBREAKER and Duke flounders.

Chen SPLASHES in the corner, reels Duke in, DDT! Cover, TWO! Chen hurries to get Duke back up, puts him in a corner, and he climbs up. Chen rains down fists, but Duke slips out to trip Chen up! Fans boo but Duke runs in and BOOTS Chen right down! Chen sputters, Duke drags Chen back up and reels him in. Crucifix for THE RIVER! High stack cover, Duke wins!

Winner: Duke Hudson, by pinfall

The Singaporean Warrior had a lot of fire, but Duke managed to put that fire out. Is Duke going to dominate all the way to a title opportunity?

 

Carmelo Hayes & Trick Williams walk around backstage.

The North American Champion and his sidekick are ready to “give the people what they want.” What will NXT’s “A Champion” have to say? We’ll find out, after the break.

 

Carmelo Hayes & Trick Williams head to the ring!

Cameron Grimes did what he could, but he could not dethrone the Breakout Star of NXT as Unified North American (and Cruiserweight) Champion. Melo says that before they get started, he just wants to say one thing. When he shoots, he don’t freakin’ miss! It’s crazy, yo! But hey, Trick, you know what they’re here to do. What are they here to do? Tonight is a Melo-bration! Before getting to that, time to talk some talk. “Last week, I said I was gonna have match of the night.” “You did that.” “I said I was gonna beat Cameron Grimes.” “You still champion.” “And I said I was gonna steal the show.” “Oooo~! Call the cops! … My bad, brother.”

But not only does Melo not miss, he put on a performance of a lifetime! Wasn’t nobody talking about Bron Breakker, Pete Dunne, the Creeds or any of that. They were talking ’bout THE A CHAMPION! And the A stands for “Absolute best! Ain’t nobody touchin’ me. Anyone can get in the ring or on the mic or on the bird app, it don’t matter!” Trick thought of something. Come April, they’ll be in Dallas. That means America’s Team and America’s Champion are in the same place at the same time. But to be real- Here comes the Bruiserweight! Pete Dunne asks what they’re on about. They say Melo beat everyone, but he hasn’t beat Dunne.

To be fair, Melo is the A Champion. And Dunne doesn’t think the absolute best should just sit on the sidelines during WrestleMania weekend. Melo knows what Dunne is up to. But Melo can’t make everyone famous. Well what is it Melo says? When he shoots, he doesn’t miss? So prove it! Next week, A Champion VS Baddest Man in NXT, the Bruiserweight! Dunne dares him! Trick says for Petey to wait. Does he not hear that good? Is he still woozy from the cage match? No means no, brother! But Melo says he’ll tell “Skeet Dunne” it’s like this. If Dunne wants to smoke with Melo, he’s got a leaf and a light.

Because the A Champ ain’t never backed down from a fight! That’s all it is, that’s all it gone be. Melo will beat Dunne like he did Grimes! That means both of them can take their asses- Grimes attacks from behind! He throws Melo out then clotheslines Trick out! Fans fire up for Grimes as he throws off his vest! What’s Melo & Trick gonna do about it? We find out, after the break!

 

Cameron Grimes VS Trick Williams w/ Carmelo Hayes!

Well obviously this is how it had to go. The match is already underway as NXT returns, and Grimes grinds Trick in a headlock. Trick powers out, Grimes runs him over! Fans chant, “Whoop that Trick!” as things speed up. Trick hurdles but Grimes stops himself. Trick runs in but is sent out! Melo has Trick calm down, but Grimes tells Trick to #KissMahGrits! Trick runs in, into a ROUNDHOUSE! Grimes bumps Trick off buckles, KICKS him, then KICKS a leg. Trick hobbles, Grimes bumps him off buckles, then CHOPS him against ropes! Grimes whips Trick, and CHOPS him down!

Fans fire up, Grimes brings Trick up to KICK him down! Cover, TWO! Grimes keeps cool as fans rally and duel. Grimes bumps Trick off buckles, then watches him stagger and flop. Grimes taunts Williams, brings him up, but Trick is in the ropes. The ref counts, Trick throws a cheap elbow! Trick whips, Grimes reverses but Trick kicks and straight punches to an uppercut! Trick runs for a LEAPING LARIAT! Trick stomps away on Grimes, then whips him into a corner for a clothesline! Trick elbows Grimes then brings him out to scoop and SLAM! Trick says, “That’s what happens.” Melo applauds but fans are torn as Trick dropkicks Grimes! Cover, TWO!

Trick keeps on Grimes with a top wristlock. Grimes endures, fans rally up, and Grimes fights up. Trick RAMS Grimes into buckles! Trick brings Grimes up to whip to ropes and LEG LARIATS Grimes down! Cover, TWO!! Grimes survives but Trick rains down fists! Trick drags Grimes up to wrap the cobra clutch on. Fans rally for Grimes as he endures, and he fights up, only for Trick to throw him down! Trick clamps the cobra clutch on again, and he drags Grimes up. Grimes snapmares Trick away then dodges to rally with forearms! Grimes runs corner to corner and BOOTS Trick down!

Fans fire up as Grimes goes up! Trick avoids the double stomp to come back with a BOOT! Grimes SUPER FOREARMS back! Trick kicks but Grimes ducks and ducks, BODY BLOW! Trick uppercuts, runs, but into a scoop and SWINGING SLAM! Cover, TWO! Trick survives and Melo is relieved. Grimes refocuses and goes to the corner. Grimes aims at Trick, “TO~ THE~ MOON!” But Trick bails out! So Grimes goes to the apron, ready to repeat last week! But Trick avoids the flying stomps, and Melo has him rush in, into a SUPERKICK! Grimes puts Trick in, goes up the corner, but Melo warns Trick. No good, CROSSBODY!

Fans fire up with Grimes as he goes back to the corner. Trick flounders and Melo snarls, but here comes the CAVE-IN! Cover, Grimes wins!

Winner: Cameron Grimes, by pinfall

Grimes stares Melo down as he’s completely sidetracked the Melo-bration! Will the A Champion still have to worry about Grimes on the other side of his fight with the Bruiserweight?

 

Brooks Jensen tries some pick-up lines.

“Hi, do you live in a corn field? Because I’m stalking you. If you were a Transformer, you’d be Optimus Fine.” What’s a Transformer? Brooks moves on from those and says he likes girls. He likes guys, too, but not like that. Brooks panics, trying to defend that he just likes girls is all. Like this one girl, Kayden. Brooks gets all motormouth talking about Kayden and tells Briggs to stop. Yeah, got it. Will Brooks ever get it right?

 

Bron Breakker checks in with Tommaso Ciampa.

Ciampa’s getting in some last pumps and Bron thanks him for getting rid of Ziggler last week. Bron knows he isn’t allowed ringside, but he’ll be watching the match. … Okay, obviously Ciampa’s in the zone, Bron will leave him to it. But then Ciampa says, “Listen, man. The way I see it, it’s Ciampa 1, Breakker 1. But I need to know who the better man is.” They both look at the title belt. Bron’s looking forward to the rubber match. Will Ciampa earn his way to that match in tonight’s main event?

 

Andre Chase has a recruitment video.

“Welcome to Andre Chase University, a place of higher learning.” He’s Professor Andre Chase, and today’s lesson is about a phrase coined back in 1913, one that is instrumental in Chase’s success. “Intestinal Fortitude.” What does that mean? “It means having balls, Michael, you dumbass!” That brings Chase to Von Wagner. Wagner’s lost his balls. Chase called him out, he hasn’t responded. Robert Stone says they’re doing things on his time, but that just means that man has no intestinal fortitude. But then what is Chase going to do once he gets in the ring with Von Wagner? He’s a pretty big dude.

Well Michael’s a pretty big jackass! What do you think he’s gonna do?! He’s gonna give that big SOB an Andre Chase University sized ass whooping! “Yeah, Mr. Chase! You tell ’em!” “Thank you, Bodhi.” Now Michael, pick up your crap and get outta his classroom! Now that was a teachable moment.

 

Nikkita Lyons VS Kayla Inlay!

The daughter of a rockstar and a beautiful groupie, the newest star in NXT has come to do more than roar. Will she make herself the queen of the jungle from day one? Or will Kayla keep Nikkita from taking her place as the top of the food chain?

The bell rings and Lyons circles with Inlay. They tie up, Inlay wrenches to a wristlock but Lyons wrenches back. Inlay pulls hair but Lyons gets a hammerlock. Fans rally, Lyons headlocks, then she throws Inlay! Fans rally up for “Nikkita! Nikkita!” as she and Inlay circle. They tie up, Lyons gets the arm again, but Inlay ROCKS her with a right. Inlay wrenches, Lyons KICKS Inlay away. Lyons promises to kick Inlay’s ass. Inlay says bring it! They tie up, Lyons puts Inlay on ropes but Inlay gets around. She won’t let anyone make a name off of her! But Lyons HEEL KICKS her back! Lyons has the arm and grinds the shoulder.

Inlay endures, Lyons cranks the arm, but Inlay whips her away. Lyons runs Inlay over! Things speed up, Inlay hurdles but Lyons rolls to hip toss! Lyons runs in to FLYING FOREARM! Inlay holds ropes to deny the suplex, and then she chokes Lyons on the ropes! The ref reprimands, Inlay YANKS the rope to jam Lyons. Inlay then throws knee after knee, and Lyons sputters to the corner. Inlay RAMS into Lyons at the corner, and again! The ref counts, Inlay lets off at 4, but Lyons sunset flips! TWO, and Inlay staggers into forearms from Lyons! Lyons snarls, brings Inlay up and throws knees of her own.

Inlay blocks but Lyons counter punches! Inlay drops and Lyons roars! Lyons circles her prey, KICKS a leg, then KICKS the other leg! ROUNDHOUSE! Inlay flounders up, Lyons runs in to forearm again! And then a HEEL KICK! Inlay denies the suplex and stomps a foot to get the standing switch. Lyons smirks as Inlay can’t lift her, but Inlay CLUBS her on the back. But then Lyons switches back, GERMAN SUPLEX! And a kip up! Lyons and the fans fire up, and Lyons SPINNING ROUNDHOUSES Inlay down! And then a SPLIT LEG DROP! Cover, Lyons wins!

Winner: Nikkita Lyons, by pinfall

That probably could’ve been a win by knockout, too! Will Nikkita be hunting the NXT Women’s Championship soon enough?

 

Persia Pirotta finds Duke Hudson backstage.

She tells him Duke did so well tonight. He is so good out there. Before she can say more, Duke pulls her in for a big lip lock! Indi walks in and says that’s so gross! Persia feels awkward and says she’s gonna go. Duke says Indi used to enjoy their kisses. That was a long time ago, Duke. Doesn’t have to be. But then Indi looks over and sees Dexter Lumis. Lumis hangs his head and sulks off. Indi says it’s not what he thinks! Indi tells Duke she loathes him, but has Duke single-handedly destroyed two of Indi’s relationships with one kiss?

 

Robert Stone & Von Wagner speak.

They heard what Andre Chase said. As book smart as Chase is, he’d get an F in street smarts. How dumb is he? How stupid is he to challenge Wagner? Stone tried giving him an out, but he won’t be so lucky next week. Chase will get in the ring with Von, and then leave filing for disability. This is Von Wagner’s world, you’re just living in it.

 

The Creed Brothers head to the ring!

The 2022 Dusty Cup winners, Julius & Brutus, with Malcolm Bivens, head out and admire the trophy. Bivens gets the mic to say, “Tonight, lets’ have a conversation about perception versus reality. Imperium would love for everyone to believe that they are these world class athletes. But last time I checked, Fabian & Marcel haven’t done NCAA tournaments. They haven’t done Olympic tryouts. But you know who has? Julius & Brutus Creed. Imperium would love for you to believe that they are the best tag team in NXT today. But last time I checked, Fabian & Marcel haven’t won a Dusty Classic.

“Imperium would love for you to believe that they are fighting champions. But they haven’t defended those championships in weeks. So ‘Gunna,’ is it oochiwally? Or is it one mic? Are you real or are you fake?” Because Diamond Mine is the real deal! And Imperium are just coleslaw and wiener schnitzel eatin’ little- But here comes Imperium! Gunther tells Bivens he will not speak about Imperium in this manner. They will learn to respect him! Sorry, Gunna. No, it’s GUNTA! Fabian Aichner says Diamond Mine will give Gunther the respect he deserves! But fans are still chanting “WAL~TER! WAL~TER!”

Marcel Barthel says the Creed Brothers may have won the Dusty Cup, they will never EVER take these tag titles from Imperium. Gunther says Bivens can talk as much as he wants for the boys, but the NXT Tag Team Championships will remain with Fabian & Marcel. Imperium steps into the ring, and the Creeds go after the champs! But that leaves Bivens alone with Gunther… Gunther gets Bivens by his collar, but Solo Sikoa gets in! And he SUPERKICKS Gunther down! The Street Champion of the Island stands over the Ring General and Bivens gives him a thumbs up. Will Sikoa look to solo Gunther when the time comes?

 

Brooks Jensen is still at it.

“My cousin did say I make the best moon-” Wait, is this really going to work? Briggs says to think of all the women. Keep on keeping on. Fallon Henley walks in and asks what they’re doing. They explain about the dating app plan, and the video they have to make. Fallon says you can just use a picture instead. Smile. There, that’s good. Fallon can help set up the profile. Alright, thanks. Wait, Briggs, what the hell? What was this video about? Briggs admits, Brooks’ disastrous love life is Briggs’ favorite form of entertainment. This was all for laughs. Really? That’s what a friend does? Brooks feels foolish, but will Fallon save him from loneliness?

 

Backstage interview with Joe Gacy & Harland.

McKenzie asks them about security footage of them confronting Draco Anthony in the Performance Center at about 2:40 AM. Gacy says they were simply talking to “Mr. Draco” in an environment he was comfortable with, and they know he works out very late at night, all alone. They had a “difference of opinion,” which apparently made Draco shove Gacy, and then Gacy had to make Harland stand down. Gacy says it is all okay. Draco is an athletic piece of clay that can be molded by the right person.

As you can also see, Draco and Harland were on opposite sides of the conversation. They will resolve this in the ring, and after the match, Draco will know it is better to be surrounded by friends than to be alone. Gacy thanks us all for our time, and leaves with Harland. Will they be able to “convince” Draco to see things their way?

 

2022 Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter VS Ivy Nile & Tatum Paxley!

KC Squared is ready to bring the party to this tournament, but it seems Diamond Mine has a new recruit. Will Ivy & Tatum crush Kacy & Kayden and kill the mood? Or will KC Squared finally equal tag title contenders?

The teams sort out, Tatum and Kayden tie up. Tatum shows her power as she shoves Kayden down, but Kayden comes back. Kayden waistlocks, trips, and flips but then fakes Tatum out to wiggle wiggle at her. Kayden points to the WrestleMania sign, dodges Tatum and waistlocks to O’Conner Roll. ONE, but Kayden comes back with a basement dropkick! Kacy tags, and SPINNING SPLASHES! Cover, ONE! Kacy keeps on Tatum but Tatum fireman’s carries! Tatum swings but Kacy arm-drags! Tatum blocks the rana, but Kacy pops around. Ivy tags in, she runs up and Tatum tosses Kacy to a HAYMAKER!

Ivy drags Kacy up, whips her to the corner, then runs in to DROPKICK Kacy down! Tag to Tatum, she stalks Kacy and has her backwards against ropes! The ref counts, Tatum lets off and Kacy flops down. Tatum drags her back, tags in Ivy, and Tatum snapmares Kacy for Ivy’s elbow drop! Cover, ONE! Ivy drags Kacy from her corner, reels her in for a scoop, but Kacy slips out to slide under. Ivy still gets the leg! Kacy kicks Ivy away, hot tag to Kayden! Kayden rallies on Diamond Mine, booty bumps Tatum then wheelbarrows and SUPERKICKS Ivy! Cover, TWO! Toxic Attraction is mildly impressed as Kayden fireman’s carries.

Ivy slips off, shoves, Kayden ducks one kick but not the ENZIGURI! Tag to Tatum, Diamond Mine gets Kayden up and DOUBLE SLAMS her! Tatum MARIPOSAS! Cover, Kacy breaks it! Ivy rushes in but is sent back out! Kacy WRECKS Ivy, dodges Tatum, and Kayden SUPERKICKS! Tag to Kacy, Kayden gets Tatum up! HIGHLIGHT REEL! Cover, KC Squared wins!

Winners: Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter, by pinfall (advance to the second round)

Toxic Attraction isn’t sure about the moves or the music, but Kacy & Kayden are riding high. Will they bring those vibes all the way to the finals?

Whoa! Diamond Mine doesn’t tolerate failure, it seems, as Ivy puts Tatum in the DIAMOND DRAGON SLEEPER! Tatum is fading out, Roderick Strong says that’s good enough. Ivy drops Tatum, then drags her out of the ring. Strong pats Ivy on the shoulder, Ivy leaves Tatum behind. Will Ivy focus on her own success in the singles division?

 

Backstage interview with Solo Sikoa.

Next week, it is happening. Sikoa VS Gunther. After everything here tonight, how is Sikoa responding to this news? He already said he was going to go after the biggest and baddest dude, and tonight, he dropped that guy on his ass. Next week, Gunther learns what Sikoa is all about. Bivens walks in and says he appreciates what Solo did. He had Gunther right where he wanted him, but he does appreciate the help. Sikoa’s gonna take Gunther out, he’s got the juice now, Uce! Bivens wants a high-five, but Sikoa says he didn’t do that for anyone but himself. Sikoa leaves, Bivens is left hanging. Will Sikoa be able to handle the Ring General just fine all on his own?

 

LA Knight speaks.

“Just when I think I had it finished. Just when I think I had that last little piece of ya, Grayson Waller. By hook or by crook, I gotta give you credit.” Waller pulled it off, but anyone with two eyes can see how. So what happens? Sanga, down he goes! Waller, down he goes! One man was left standing, and we all know who it was! L A Knight, YEAH! Is Knight going to hunt down Waller until there’s no excuses?

 

NXT Championship #1 Contender’s Match: Tommaso Ciampa VS Dolph Ziggler!

For the first time ever, these two are 1v1 and it’s on NXT! But will Daddy Ciampa defend his home and head back for Goldie? Or will the Show-Off steal the show and have that golden ticket in his back pocket?

NXT returns as Ciampa makes his entrance. The bell rings and fans are fired up for Ciampa as he stares down with Ziggler. They circle, tie up, and go around. Ciampa waistlocks, Ziggler squats to get the switch, but Ciampa powers through to get an arm. Fans rally as Ciampa has the top wristlock and shifts through to get a facelock then pushes Ziggler to the mat. Ciampa digs his knee into Ziggler’s head then SLAPS him on the back. Ziggler gets away and Ciampa waits on him to come back. They circle, tie up, and Ziggler shoots in to get the waistlock, then the facelock. Ziggler rolls it to a cover, ONE!

Ziggler keeps the facelock but Ciampa gets to the ropes. The ref counts, Ciampa and Ziggler let off, but then they start shoving. Ciampa avoids a kick, Ziggler avoids a chop, but Ciampa underhooks! Ziggler gets free but he avoids the knee! Fans say, “This is Awesome!” already, and Ciampa stares down with Ziggler. Ciampa says it was that close, but Ziggler HEADBUTTS him! Then rolls him up, TWO! Ziggler hammers away with rights, then cravats and turns Ciampa for a NECKBREAKER! Cover, ONE! Ziggler clamps right back on with a chinlock. Ziggler grinds Ciampa down, moves around, and rakes the eyes!

The ref reprimands and fans boo but Ziggler just soaks it up. Ziggler scrapes laces on Ciampa’s face then stalks him to a corner. Ziggler throws a heavy body shot, then scrapes Ciampa’s face off the ropes. The ref reprimands, the fans rally up, but Ziggler looms over Ciampa. Ziggler clamps on with a chinlock and has an arm, it’s almost a crossface! Ciampa fights it, even as Ziggler pulls back on the hold. Ciampa is up, he throws elbows and body shots, and he is free to CHOP Ziggler! Ziggler kicks a leg, ducks  a haymaker, but swings into a waistlcok and CHOP! Ciampa fires off, whips, but Ziggler reverses.

Ciampa comes back to LARIAT! And again! Fans fire up as Ciampa builds speed and CLOBBERS Ziggler! Ziggler flounders, fans fire up and Ciampa runs in to CHOP again! Borrowing a move from Finn Balor, perhaps? Ciampa hits a ROLLING ELBOW, then brings down his kneepad. Ciampa runs in, but Ziggler avoids the knee! But Ciampa denies the ZigZag by holding ropes! Ziggler runs back in but is sent right out! Ciampa KNEES Ziggler off the apron! Fans fire up and Ciampa pats himself on the back as NXT goes picture in picture.

Ciampa grins while Ziggler flounders on the floor. Ciampa goes to fetch Ziggler, and CLUBS him down. The ring count climbs, Ciampa puts Ziggler in at 7 of 10. Ciampa scrapes his sole on Ziggler’s face then stomps him down. Ciampa rains down fists, Ziggler flounders away, but Ciampa just walks over to the corner. Ciampa stands Ziggler up, climbs up, and he rains down fists! Fans are surely counting, but Ziggler stops Ciampa at 5 to trip him up! Ciampa is stuck in ropes, Ziggler gets him for a DRAPING NECKBREAKER! Both men are down but stirring. Ziggler drags himself up, he goes after Ciampa, and whips him corner to corner hard!

Ciampa slumps down in the corner and Ziggler brings him back up. Ziggler snapmares Ciampa for a BIG elbow drop! Cover, TWO! Ziggler keeps on Ciampa with a SLEEPER! NXT returns to single picture as fans rally up and Ciampa endures. Ciampa is turning reddish purple already as Ziggler pushes back. Ciampa gets up, throws body shots, and gets free! Ziggler punches Ciampa back, but Ciampa punches him. Ziggler kicks the leg, Ciampa CHOPS again! Ziggler swings, Ciampa dodges, and he catches Ziggler for a CATAPULT! Ziggler hits buckles and flounders out, into a LARIAT from Ciampa! Cover, TWO!

Fans rally as both men are down again. Both men slowly sit up and Ciampa throws a haymaker. Ziggler throws a body shot, so Ciampa gives another haymaker. Ziggler haymakers, Ciampa haymakers. Ziggler kicks, Ciampa CHOPS, then fires off fast hands! Ciampa isn’t letting up and he gets Ziggler in a corner! Ciampa starts stomping away, but the ref counts! Ciampa lets off at 4, and fans are thunderous for the Psycho Killer! Ciampa runs, into a DROPKICK! But he stays up to ripcord and ROCK Ziggler with a right! But Ziggler comes back to FAMOUSER! Cover, TWO!! Ciampa survives, reminding us why he was NXT Champion!

Fans rally for “NXT! NXT!” as both men stir. Ciampa and Ziggler go to opposite corners. Ziggler tunes up the band, runs in, but into a BOOT! Ciampa reels Ziggler in, gets him up, PROJECT CIAMPA! Cover, TWO!! Ziggler survives but Ciampa just brings the kneepads down! Ziggler gets up, Ciampa runs in, PSYCHO KNEE! Cover, ROPEBREAK!! Ziggler saves himself by a literal foot! Fans hope they “Fight Forever!” but this has to end somehow! Ciampa drops a knee on Ziggler’s knee! Ziggler flops out of the ring, clutches the leg, and Ciampa goes out after him. Ciampa drags Ziggler up, reels him in, but Ziggler POSTS Ciampa, ZIGZAG to the floor!!

Fans lose their minds while the ring count climbs! Ziggler drags himself over to Ciampa, drags Ciampa up at 6 of 10, and into the ring at 8. Ziggler is in at 9 and fans are fired up again. Ciampa wobbles, Ziggler runs in, but the superkick misses! Ciampa kicks, reels Ziggler in, but the bad arm won’t let him underhook! Ziggler rolls Ciampa up, TWO!! Ziggler hurries to get the SLEEPER!! Ciampa flails with one good arm but Ziggler has the body scissors! Ciampa endures, fans rally up, and Ciampa manages to move around. Ciampa gets to his feet, and BACKPACK SENTONS! Cover, TWO!!!

Fans can’t believe it but Ziggler survived! Both men are down again and Ciampa goes to a corner. Ziggler goes to the ropes, but Ciampa goes out to the apron to intercept him. Ciampa CHOPS Ziggler again, but Ziggler ROCKS Ciampa with a haymaker. Ciampa CHOPS, Ziggler body shots! Ciampa CHOPS again, and again, and again! Then BOOTS! Ziggler flounders, Ciampa roars! Ciampa manages to fireman’s carry Ziggler, tucks him in, APRON AIR RAID CRASH!! Both men fall to the floor and fans lose their minds again! Ciampa manages to get Ziggler up and in while fans chant for “NXT!”

But wait, a cameraman attacks Ciampa?! The ref missed that because he was checking Ziggler! SUPERKICK!! Cover, Ziggler wins!!

Winner: Dolph Ziggler, by pinfall (NEW #1 Contender to the NXT Championship)

That’s not a real cameraman at all! That’s ROBERT ROODE! The GLORIOUS tag partner of Dolph Ziggler helped him get this win! The Dirty Dawgs soak up all the heat as they celebrate, but they’re not done! They stomp away on Ciampa, but here comes BRON! Bron DECKS Ziggler, DECKS Roode, and the Dawgs run off! Bron says if they wanna do 2v1, then how about 2v2? Bron & Ciampa VS Ziggler & Roode! And how about this? The Dirty Dawgs can find their balls and Bron will fight them right now! Ziggler & Roode look to be leaving, but they come back! And it’s a brawl! Ciampa has Roode, Bron has Ziggler!

Security and referees rush out but they can’t stop this from spilling out of the ring and all around ringside! Fans are loving this and want to “Let Them Fight!” but NXT is going off the air! Will things only heat up even more when Ciampa and the champ get their tag match with the Dirty Dawgs?


My Thoughts:

A very good NXT to start us on the Road to WrestleMania, and Stand & Deliver 2022. The only disappointing surprise about that event coming back is that it’ll be on Saturday, April 2nd, the same night as night one of WrestleMania 38! How the hell does that work? Is it going to be reduced to just two hours and act as a kickoff to night one? I don’t like that. Why not just make it a themed event NXT holds on Tuesday? Or even on Thursday. But it looks like it’ll have a pretty good card, as I’m thinking that’s where we’ll get both tag title matches. Diamond Mine and Imperium had a good promo segment, and what a great surprise save from Solo Sikoa.

Imperium VS Creed Brothers is going to be a very good match, and with the way NXT has been pushing the Creeds, I wouldn’t be surprised if they win. The Women’s Dusty Cup got started tonight, with two matches and two promo segments. Dakota’s weird, spazzy character is still a weird choice but she’s delivering it well, and she and Wendy might end up an odd couple fan favorite through their interactions. And I like that Cora turned the tables on Raquel and showed her she can fly high. I wonder if that means Cora is going to try power moves and Raquel is going to try springboard moves in their first match together…

Toxic Attraction hanging out “all night” in their “lounge” was an interesting detail for the show. KLR & Shirai of course won but it was a pretty fun match to open the tournament with. And then KC Squared gets a good win over Ivy & Tatum. Ivy & Tatum sure didn’t last long as a team, though. Fans still really like Ivy, so maybe she can go after Mandy Rose soon. As for Indi & Persia, I sensed things were going to fall apart, and things really took a step towards that with Duke just planting one on Persia and then still flirting with Indi. Sad Dexter Lumis was an oddly funny little moment, and I’m thinking we’ll get Dexter VS Duke, since Duke squashed Chen.

Andre Chase continues to be hilarious in his Chase U promos. Meanwhile, Von continues to be bland in his, so thankfully he does have Robert Stone. I would think Von crushes Chase, and he might even brutalize Bodhi. The story of Gacy, Harland and Draco takes another step, but I guess Draco’s first win can come off Harland. Nikkita Lyons has a good debut, with Kayla Inlay looking good, too. As I said, I sensed the potential Lyons had as Faith the Lioness in Women of Wrestling, so I think she’ll definitely find her way to taking on the NXT Women’s Champion in the days after WrestleMania season.

This story of Brooks Jensen’s love life continues to turn things around, his multiple awkward dating app video takes were really clever stuff. And Fallon Henley continues to hang around him and Briggs, so as I said last time, this has to turn around to where Fallon is the love interest somehow. We got a good promo out of Melo & Trick with Dunne, and then a really good match of Grimes VS Trick. Grimes wins and he is very much still in the running for the North American Championship while others are still building up. Melo VS Dunne for the title next week is also going to be great stuff, but again I feel like it’s to put Melo over and build his star power.

Waller VS Knight went about as expected with Sanga playing a role in the finish. Waller wins but Knight stands tall, and between what Knight said after the match and in his backstage promo, Last Man Standing match as their blow-off? Then we got some good promos out of Bron, Ziggler and Ciampa on the way to tonight’s main event, and the main event was awesome. Ciampa VS Ziggler was bordering on PPV/TakeOver level, and of course Ziggler cheats to win. Roode makes his return to NXT, helps Ziggler, and we’re of course getting Bron VS Ziggler. And then getting Dirty Dawgs on NXT, that’s going to be some fun stuff. Roode might take the loss here so Bron will have momentum but Ziggler won’t be hurt.

My Score: 8.7/10


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AEW Coverage

Mitchell’s AEW Rampage Results & Report! (2/3/23)

The Elite are on a Rampage!

Published

on

Is The Elite in for a tune-up or trap game tonight?

Though they plan to defend the AEW World Trios titles on Dynamite, Kenny Omega & the Young Bucks defend the titles against The Firm here on Rampage! Will they overlook Ethan Page, Matt Hardy & Isiah Kassidy and get caught?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • AEW World Trios Championships: The Elite VS Ethan Page, Matt Hardy & Isiah Kassidy; The Elite win and retain the titles.
  • Swerve Strickland w/ Mogul Affiliates VS Brian Pillman Jr; Swerve wins.
  • Saraya & Toni Storm VS The Renegade Sisters; Saraya & Storm win.
  • Rush w/ La Faccion Ingobernable VS Christopher Daniels; Rush wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

AEW World Trios Championships: The Elite VS Ethan Page, Matt Hardy & Isiah Kassidy!

Kenny Omega and the Young Bucks accepted the challenge of the upstart Top Flight & AR Fox, but then they also accepted the challenge of The Firm’s All Ego! Will The Elite’s ego cost them in their very first defense? Or will they still keep their date with Fox, Dante & Darius for Dynamite?

The bell rings and the trios sort out. Dayton chants, “THE! ELITE! THE THE ELITE!” Nick Jackson starts against Isiah Kassidy, they circle, and they tie up. Nick wrenches to a wristlock, Kassidy rolls and handsprings to wrench and wristlock back. Nick uses ropes to flip through and wrench back to hit a headlock takeover. Kassidy headscissors, Nick kips free, but Kassidy hits a headlock takeover. Nick headscissors, Kassidy kips free, things speed up and Kassidy wheelbarrows to arm-drag! Kassidy kips up, but Nick blocks the chop to knuckle lock. Nick CHOPS, goes up and up, “LUCHA LIBRE~!” and arm-drags!

Kassidy staggers up into another arm-drag, and Nick has the armlock! Fans cheer but Ethan is furious. Nick wrenches Kassidy, tags Matt, and the Bucks double whip to bait Kassidy into a GUTBUSTER, to the NECKBREAKER BACKBREAKER COMBO! Fans fire up with the Bucks, and Matt points to Kenny. Fans fire up, and Matt tags in Omega! Hardy tags in and he circles with Omega. They tie up, break, and then go again. They break, go again, then Hardy headlocks. Omega powers out but Hardy runs him over. Things speed up but Hardy fakes out the hurdle! Hardy kicks low, reels Omega in, TWIST- NO, Omega powers out!

Omega runs in at the corner but Hardy dodges, and the V-Trigger hits buckles! Hardy reels Omega in, but Omega fights the Side Effect! Hardy staggers, Omega runs in but Hardy sends him out! Omega hurries back up but Hardy BLASTS him off the apron! Omega hits railing, Stokely laughs at him, and then Hardy goes up the corner! Omega stands up, but Ethan leaps to CLOBBER Omega! Ethan gives Hardy a thumbs up, he did that so Hardy wouldn’t have to risk himself. Ethan puts Omega in the ring, Ethan apparently snuck a tag that not even Hardy noticed. Ethan drags Omega up to scoop and SLAM him!

Fans boo but Ethan tells the Bucks to kiss this. Ethan drags Omega up, throws haymakers, and then has Omega in the corner. Ethan has Hardy and Kassidy hold Omega in place, then Ethan runs to BLAST the Bucks off the apron! Fans boo more but Ethan runs in, into Omega’s BOOT! Omega is free, he goes up and over Ethan to hot tag Nick! Ethan runs in, Omega dodges and the Bucks DOUBLE GAMANGIRI Ethan back! Nick then tags Matt while Omega RANAS Ethan! The Bucks double kick, Nick runs and Matt gives him the boost to RANA Ethan! Ethan hurries to tag Hardy, he runs in but into DOUBLE DROPKICKS!

Ethan shouts for Kassidy to do something, so Kassidy springboards, but the Bucks get clear to double elbow! They wheelbarrow and lift Kassidy, Omega runs in, WHEELBARROW KOTARO KRUSHER! Kassidy flounders out of the ring while the fans fire up with the Elite. Hardy returns but Omega sets up Ethan and Kassidy. Matt runs in to WRECK Ethan and Kassidy with a dropkick! Matt then holds the ropes for Nick to FLY and take them out! But Matt Hardy kicks Matt Jackson low and reels him in! TWIST- NO, NORTHERN LIGHTS! Matt Jackson starts up the Polar Express, but Ethan saves Hardy!

Ethan swings, but into a NORTHERN LIGHTS! Fans fire up with Jackson as he has Hardy for haymakers! And stomps! Jackson runs, Ethan trips him up but Jackson BOOTS Ethan! Hardy catches Jackson for a SIDE EFFECT! Cover, TWO! Hardy drags Jackson over and tags in Ethan. Ethan stomps Matt Jackson, going after the legs. Ethan talks trash on Dayton then brings Matt around for a BACKBREAKER! Fans boo but Ethan soaks up the heat as Rampage goes picture in picture.

Ethan drags Matt up, bumps him off Kassidy’s boot, then tags Kassidy in. Ethan and Kassidy mug Matt, Kassidy stomps away, then lets off as the ref counts. Kassidy drags Matt back up, tags Hardy, and they mug Matt Jackson now. Hardy brings Jackson around to fire forearms and elbows! Then Hardy has Jackson under the bottom rope, for a ROPE GUILLOTINE! Kassidy gives thumbs up as Hardy covers, TWO! Hardy drags Jackson up, bumps him off Ethan’s boot, and then tags Ethan in. Ethan and Hardy mug Jackson, abut Jackson fights back with haymakers! Rampage returns to single picture as Jackson backs Ethan down!

Matt Jackson runs but into a BOOT! Ethan BLASTS Omega and taunts Nick. Fans boo but Ethan drags Matt Jackson over to tag Hardy back in. Hardy drags Jackson up, bumps him off buckles and shouts “DELETE! DELETE!” Fans chant along, and Hardy goes through all three levels! Hardy grabs Jackson’s legs, and YANKS him into a POWERBOMB! Cover, but Nick breaks it! The ref reprimands but Nick backs off. Hardy drags Matt Jackson to the drop zone, goes up the corner, but then Ethan tags in! Fans boo as Ethan ruins Hardy’s good time. Ethan then copies Hardy’s stuff, but leaps into a SUPERKICK!

Fans rally as Ethan and Matt are down! Hot tag to Omega! Fans fire up as Omega goes up top to CROSSBODY Ethan! Kassidy runs in, to get a POLISH HAMMER! POLISH HAMMER for Ethan! Omega spins but Ethan dodges to kick low! Ethan whips, Omega reverses and fireman’s carries! “YOU! CAN’T! ESCAPE!” ROLLING SENTON, and the MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO! Fans fire up as Omega drags Ethan up into a half nelson. Ethan fights the full nelson, RAMS Omega into the corner, and Kassidy tags in. Kassidy and Hardy run to BLAST the Bucks while Ethan fires off back elbows on Omega!

Ethan whips Omega corner to corner, runs in and clotheslines! Kassidy adds a SPLASH, Hardy adds a clothesline! Hardy sets up, Ethan whips Kassidy, FIRM IN MOTION INTO DOUBLE SUPERKICKS!! Ethan is shocked to see what happened, but he runs into a SNAP DRAGON! Hardy runs in, kicks low, but Omega turns Twist into full nelson! Hardy elbows free, runs, and DOUBLE LARIATS take both men down! Nick goes up, but so does Kassidy! STEREO SWANTON BOMBS!! Nick takes out Hardy while Kassidy takes out Omega! Then Kassidy runs in, dodges Nick and goes up to FLYING COMPLETE SHOT!

Matt Jackson shouts “YOU’RE DEAD!” and he SUPERKICKS Kassidy! Ethan runs in, blocks a kick and spins Jackson to ROUNDHOUSE! and then deadlift POWERSLAM! But V-TRIGGER outta nowhere!! All six men are down and the fans are thunderous! A standing count begins, “This is Awesome!” and Omega crawls to hot tag Nick! Nick storms in to CLUB Kassidy. Kassidy throws a forearm, but Nick hits back! They go back and forth with heavy shots, but Kassidy gets the edge! Nick staggers, but he ROUNDHOUSES back! Nick whips, Kassidy reverses and SPIN KICKS! Nick goes to a corner, Kassidy runs in, but Nick dodges!

SHINING WIZARD! GAMANGIRI! FOREARM! BULLDOG! The Elite regroup and they aim at Kassidy, only for Hardy and Ethan to drag Omega and Matt Jackson out! They’re sent into railing hard, and Kassidy runs to hit a DESTROYER!! Nick flounders to a corner, Hardy sets up again! PARTY IN MOTION! Ethan & Kassidy put Nick up top, DOUBLE ICONOCLASM! And then a feed to the TWIST OF FATE!! Kassidy covers, Matt Jackson breaks it!! Ethan storms in, he gets Matt Jackson up, but he slips off the Ego’s Edge and Omega V-TRIGGERS Ethan down! Hardy throws Omega out!

Hardy runs in, Jackson moves, Hardy BLASTS Ethan! Hardy is shocked and he hurries to check on Ethan. Kassidy TOSSES Matt Jackson out, but Nick springboards in! CUTTER?!? Kassidy covers, TWO!!! Kassidy almost wins this on his own because Hardy and Ethan distracted with Ethan’s jaw. Nick tags Omega while Kassidy calls to his team. Hardy hurries over but Omega V-TRIGGERS Kassidy down!! Omega drags Kassidy away, tags Matt in and then Matt tags Nick. Jackson BLASTS Hardy, Omega Electric Chair Lifts Kassidy! ONE WINGED ANGEL!! Into B T E TRIGGER!!! Cover, The Elite wins!

Winners: The Elite, by pinfall (still AEW World Trios Champions)

This was no trap game, but this was far more than a tune-up! The Elite are red hot now, will they melt the Coldest Tag Team in the Game this Wednesday?

 

Backstage interview with Ricky Starks.

Lexi Nair is with The Absolute, and she brings up the Jericho Appreciation Society throw down the Garcia-Guevara Gauntlet challenge. Starks sorta got what he asked for, so what’s the plan? Starks says, “I can tell you it wasn’t a plan for us to match here,” in reference to his shirt and her whole ensemble both being a light khaki. But Starks admits he puts his foot in his mouth, something he’s known to do around here. But that’s okay, because if that is how Starks gets at Chris Jericho, then that is what he’s going to do. If that is the way to beat Jericho, to get out of the “Web of Jericho” that he has entangled himself in, that is what Starks will do.

“I am no stranger to having the deck stacked against me, because I always find a way. Parker, Daddy Magic, Sammy, Danny, it doesn’t matter. Because in El Paso, Texas, I am gonna to prove exactly why I am Absolute. And when I do get my way, Chris, I am going to embarrass you. And I am going to beat you, again.” Starks is ready for everything the JAS is going to throw at him, but will that still get him the win?

 

Team Triple J speaks.

Jay Lethal tells the others, “Right now, we are riding high. But the Screen Actors Guild and AEW, they’re trying to rain on our parade by distorting on the camera Sonjay’s Golden Globe. I tell you what, just like last week, when we embarrassed the Best Friends and Danhausen, we proved that in the ring, we can’t be matched! And I bet right now, Paul Walter Hauser is sitting at home without a Golden Globe, wishing that he had better friends.” Jeff Jarrett says, “I bet Mr. Walter Hauser wishes he never ever stepped foot in the Kia Forum! Because what happened the last time? I bet he’s wishing he never went on The Late Late Show with James Corden!”

But Best Friends respond!

Danhausen is upset that he got smashed in the head with a Grammy! No, it was a Golden Globe. But keep going, this is good energy. Yes! Danhausen was “decimating” their giant, Satnam Singh, and then he was caught off guard by a GOLDEN GLOBE! That was bad. So YOU will be cursed if it happens again! It shouldn’t happen again, right? It shouldn’t. Danhausen says it WON’T happen again! But when and where will we see the sequel to this showdown of friends and enemies?

 

Swerve Strickland w/ Mogul Affiliates VS Brian Pillman Jr!

For whatever reason, second generation wrestlers get on Swerve’s nerves. He can’t get after The Natural just yet, but he’s settling for #FlyinBrian41 here tonight! Will BPJ use his homefield advantage to stop the Mogul? Or will Dayton be “Whose House?” “SWERVE’S HOUSE!”

The bell rings and Swerve circles with BPJ. They tie up, go around, and BPJ powers Swerve to a corner. Swerve pushes back and wrenches to a wristlock. BPJ rolls, cartwheels, handsprings and headstands, but Swerve pushes him down to turn BPJ over to a ghost pin! TWO, BPJ gets up but Swerve is after him. BPJ whips Swerve to a corner, Swerve goes up and over and O’Conner Rolls, then Eddy Gordo RANAS, but BPJ rolls through to stand back up. Fans cheer the technical exchange. BPJ and Swerve tie up again, Swerve pulls BPJ’s hair and puts him in the corner. BPJ turns things around, and he swings, only for Swerve to duck.

Swerve whips BPJ but BPJ rolls, handsprings and kangaroo kicks! Swerve checks his nose while fans rally up. Swerve runs in, BPJ dodges, things speed up and BPJ hurdles to drop. Swerve handsprings over, things keep moving, but BPJ steps on Swerve! Fans fire up as BPJ asks, “Whose House?” “BRIAN’S HOUSE!” But Swerve takes off his necklace to wrap around his fist as he ROCKS BPJ with a sucker punch! Fans boo, Swerve whips, but BPJ reverses and DROPKICKS! Swerve bails out, BPJ builds speed, and fans fire up as BPJ WRECKS Swerve with a dropkick! BPJ hurries away from Trench & Boudreaux while Rampage goes picture in picture.

BPJ grins while Swerve is furious. Boudreaux & Trench help Swerve stand up. BPJ talks some smack but Swerve has his guys stand down. Swerve goes up the steps and into the ring, and he ties up with BPJ. Swerve kicks BPJ, ROCKS him with a right, then swings, but misses in the corner! BPJ CHOPS, ROCKS, and wrenches before he whips corner to corner. BPJ runs in to clothesline, CHOP, and NORTHERN LIGHTS! Bridging cover, TWO! BPJ rallies the fans while Swerve grits his teeth. BPJ storms up but Swerve gets around to JAM the leg! BPJ falls over and clutches the knee while Swerve taunts Dayton.

Swerve stands on BPJ’s leg, throws down fists, then kicks him around. Swerve stands BPJ up, BPJ throws hands, but Swerve KICKS the leg out! Swerve goes to the corner, goes up, and he taunts the fans before the FALLING UPPERCUT! Swerve swaggers and smirks at all the fans before he goes back to BPJ. Swerve kicks the leg, grinds an arm, and Rampage goes to break.

Rampage returns as BJP and Swerve fire forearm after forearm at each other! BPJ CHOPS, CHOPS, then SLAPS! Swerve staggers, BPJ grabs at him, but Swerve brushes that away to ROCK BPJ with a haymaker! BPJ staggers to a corner, Swerve storms over, but he blocks a boot! Swerve brings BPJ out, slips around that leg and hits a BACKBREAKER! BPJ staggers, Swerve SLAPS him, but BPJ SUPERKICKS! And LARIATS! Cover, TWO! Swerve survives but BPJ fires up! Fans rally as BPJ fireman’s carries. Swerve fights free, and he SLAPS away on BPJ’s back. BPJ snapmares, Swerve blocks the superkick and he mule kicks the bad leg!

Swerve aims from the corner as BPJ clutches his knee. BPJ stands but the bad leg gives out! And then the HOUSE CALL!! Cover, TWO!?! BPJ survives and Swerve is fuming! Dayton fires up but Swerve drags BPJ up. Swerve bumps BPJ off buckles, hoists him up top, then climbs up after him. BPJ throws body shots in return, then climbs up to HOTSHOT Swerve away! Trench distracts BPJ, BPJ runs him off, and the ref is busy with Trench, allowing Boudreaux to trip BPJ up! Fans boo, but Swerve hurries to go out after BPJ and drag him up! Fireman’s carry, APRON DEATH VALLEY DRIVER!!

Swerve hurries up a corner and BPJ sits up, for the KILL STOMPS!! Cover, Swerve wins!

Winner: Swerve Strickland, by pinfall

Mogul Affiliates comes through for their leader, Swerve takes out a second generation star! #HoodiesUp, and the big men stand Swerve up. Trench feeds BPJ to Boudreaux’s LARIAT! Then Swerve brings out the necklace, but here comes DUSTIN RHODES! The Natural has a TURNBUCKLE CROSSBAR! Dustin uses that to run off Mogul Affiliates, but this war has only just begun. Will Dustin prove to Swerve that being second generation doesn’t make him better, but that being better makes him better?

 

The House of Black speaks.

Malakai says, “There was a saying that reads, ‘Assumptions are a poison that create unrealistic expectations.’ And what is the poison that you people created? The assumption that Eddie Kingston was going to join the House. No, the House does not want Eddie, and Eddie does not want The House. The House did what it always does, and what its mission has been since the beginning: prove that every human being on this planet, no matter how true of heart, is corruptible. And it takes the smallest push into the right direction to peel off the layers of virtue and let that venom of hate grow.

“There is no forgiveness for people like you and me, Eddie. And like Cain did to Abel, you do what you can’t help but do, because it is your nature. It is the balance of who you are in this world. Because no man is ever truly…” The Mad King has begun his descent, will there be no going back now that he has begun to #FadeToBlack?

 

Saraya & Toni Storm VS The Renegade Sisters!

Speaking of a descent, the Revolution and the Lightning have stooped to shocking lows as of late, all in the name of showing the AEW homegrown talent that they, the outsiders, know what is best for business. But will they continue to do whatever they want to the AEW Women’s Division? Or will Charlette & Robyn be just the renegades to fight The Revolution?

The teams sort out and after a rock-paper-scissors game that goes nowhere, Robyn steps up to Storm. Storm doesn’t seem to take Robyn seriously but Robyn eggs her on. Robyn and Storm tie up, go around, and end up against ropes, in a corner, and then to more ropes. Storm lets off to pie face Robyn. Robyn ROCKS Storm! And again, and again, and then she CHOPS! Robyn whips, Storm reverses but Robyn ducks, only to run into Storm’s THESZ PRESS! Storm rains down fists, then she drags Robyn up. Storm puts Robyn in the ropes, CHOKES Robyn, then argues with the ref so Saraya can CHOKE Robyn, too!

The fans boo as Saraya fires off knees on Robyn! Storm sucker punches Charlette! Storm runs to HIP ATTACK Robyn off the apron! Fans are torn while Robyn lands on the floor. Storm and Saraya bring Robyn up to RAM her into steel steps! And then into the railing! The ref has to keep Charlette back, and Saraya says Charlette is crazy! Storm drags Robyn up and puts her in the ring to then drag her over. Tag to Saraya, they mug Robyn, and Saraya short arm LARIATS! And again! And again! Fans boo but Saraya smiles and soaks it all up. Saraya drags Robyn up, tells fans to shut up, but Robyn waistlocks.

Saraya elbows free, whips Robyn to a corner, SHINING WIZARD! Fans boo but Saraya just revels in it. Saraya snapmares and SHINING WIZARDS again! Cover, TWO!! Robyn survives but Saraya drags Robyn up. Robyn RAMS Saraya into a corner, but it’s the enemy corner! Storm tags in, she and Saraya mug Robyn, and then Storm snap suplexes Robyn down! Cover, TWO! Robyn is hanging tough but Storm clamps on a full nelson. Fans rally as Robyn endures and fights up. Storm thrashes Robyn around, but Robyn fights up and breaks the nelson! Only for Storm to throw her down by her hair! Fans boo and the ref reprimands, but Storm just scowls.

Storm kicks Robyn around, toying with her, but Robyn gets mad. Robyn ROCKS Storm! Robyn eggs Storm on so Storm hits back! Robyn ROCKS, CHOPS and repeat! Storm swing, Robyn dodges and ENZIGURIS! Fans fire up as both women are down! Storm a nd Robyn crawl, hot tag to Charlette! Charlette rallies on Storm and Saraya! SPLASH in the corner! Charlette rallies the fans with “GET! YOU! SOME!” Charlette runs in, but Storm SHOTGUNS her down! Charlette flounders to a corner, Storm runs in, SWEET HIP MUSIC! Storm brings Charlette up for Saraya to YAKUZA KICK! STORM ZERO!! Cover, Storm & Saraya win!

Winners: Saraya & Toni Storm, by pinfall

The outsiders win, but they’re not done! Saraya brings out cans of spray paint! Toni CLOBBERS Robyn, Saraya chases the ref out of the ring, and they start spraying the Renegades! They put big green L’s on the Renegades, will they continue to hand out those L’s to the AEW Women’s Division?

 

Adam Cole speaks.

“There is nothing that I love more than professional wrestling. And I have worked harder every single day than I ever have in my entire life. Because for me, I thought my dream was dead. And when your dreams die, your hope dies. I never, ever lost hope, because I refused to let anybody or anything stand in my way of getting back inside that squared circle. And I have no idea who my first opponent will be when I return, but I can promise you this: You are going to get the best damn pro-wrestler on the planet. And his name…” ADAM COLE, BAYBAY! AEW Revolution is the target, will Adam Cole make it all about the boom?

 

Mark Henry welcomes us back to Rampage.

The World’s Strongest Man says, “Before former ROH Champion, Rush, faces Bryan Danielson this Wednesday, he will face former ROH Champion, Christopher Daniels tonight on Rampage.” The Fallen Angel tells El Toro Blanco, “Your reputation precedes you, but I am not intimidated by reputation. And I’m not a stepping stone for anyone, Rush.” But Rush tells Daniels, “You have never faced anybody like Rush.” Rush continues on in Spanish, then says in English, “Just remember: if you mess with the bull, you get the horns.” Mark Henry then says, “It’s TIME! For the main event!” Will Rush be rolling into El Paso and his battle with the American Dragon? Or will this be the rise of the Fallen Angel?

Rush w/ La Faccion Ingobernable VS Christopher Daniels!

The bell rings and fans rally for the Fallen Angel. Daniels and Rush circle, tie up, and Daniels waistlocks. Rush switches, Daniels switches back but Rush sits. Daniels holds on for a moment but Rush switches back. They stand, Daniels shifts to hit a headlock takeover. Rush headscissors, Daniels pries free to trip Rush to a cover, ONE! The two stand off and fans cheer. Rush and Daniels reset to circle again. They tie up, Rush wrenches and YANKS the arm, then wrenches to CLUB the arm. Rush YANKS the arm but Daniels uses ropes to flip through and arm-drag Rush away! Rush stands up, sidesteps, but Daniels blocks the hip toss!

Daniels tries but now Rush blocks the hip toss. Rush swings but Daniels blocks the haymaker to hit a NECKBREAKER! Daniels then CLOBBERS Rush! Cover, TWO! Fans rally, Daniels drags Rush up and CLUBS him. Daniels whips Rush to ropes to calf kick him out! Daniels then builds speed and DIVES! Direct hit at the ramp and fans fire up as Rampage goes picture in picture.

Daniels drags Rush up and into the ring, hurries up the corner, but Jose distracts! Daniels AX HANDLES Jose down! But Rush DECKS Daniels with a sucker punch! Daniels flops out of the ring and Rush distracts the ref so “Perro Peligroso” can attack! Preston Vance holds up the Ingobernables fist, then he POSTS Daniels! Vance even CHOKES Daniels with the stolen masks of luchadors Vance has beaten outside of AEW! Vance gets away with all this as Rush goes out after Daniels. But then Vance distracts the ref so that Rush can beat down Daniels! Rush drags Daniels around the way to throw him into railing!

Rush throws knee after knee into Daniels against the railing while Jose hurries to get the bright green cable! Rush throws down fists, Jose throws the cable over, and Rush holds it up. Rush then gathers some slack, to LASH Daniels! And then CHOKE him with it! Daniels can only cough and sputter because Vance is still in the ref’s face! Rush lets Daniels go, then drags him up to put him in the ring. Jose gives Rush some water to refresh himself, then Jose shows off just one of the many fat stacks MJF gave LFI on Dynamite. Rush uses the fat stack to fan himself off, then gives it to Vance. Rush then gets in the ring to CHOP Daniels!

Rush whips Daniels corner to corner, runs in and clotheslines! Then he sits Daniels down to rain down forearms! The ref reprimands and counts, Rush lets off at 4. Jose beats the apron like a drum and Rush runs corner to corner, to fake Daniels out on the Bull’s Horns! Daniels lets his guard down, and Rush KICKS him in the face! Daniels clutches his jaw while Rush rolls back to tranquilo. Rush then drags Daniels up to throw him out, and of course Vance is right on Daniels! Vance CHOPS Daniels while Rush distracts the ref. Vance puts Daniels back in, Rush stands on Daniels with a cocky cover, ONE!

Rush is annoyed but he stomps away on Daniels. Rampage returns to single picture as Rush pretends to take Daniels’ head and kicks it into the crowd. But then he KICKS Daniels in the side! Daniels goes to the apron, fans boo, but Rush kicks him to the floor. Rush again distracts the ref, and Vance uses the fat stack of cash to SLAP Daniels! Vance then makes it rain on Daniels, and stands him up to CHOP him down! Fans boo as Jose also makes it rain on Daniels. Vance puts Daniels in the ring, Rush drags Daniels up and throws body shots. Rush tosses Daniels back out, and then “apologizes” to the ref as a way to distract him!

Jose and Vance stand Daniels up, Jose chicken wings Daniels’ arms, and Vance runs in. Daniels moves, the BOOT takes out Jose! Fans fire up, Vance is shocked, and Daniels POSTS Vance! Daniels throws Jose into the ring then goes around the way. Rush is distracted by his assistant being where he shouldn’t be, and Daniels slips in to roll Rush up! TWO!! Rush escapes, but Daniels baits him into the corner. Daniels dodges, ENZIGURIS, and fans fire up! Rush staggers, Daniels runs in and LARIATS Rush! And CHOPS! And wrenches to a BLUE THUNDER BOMB! Cover, TWO!! Rush survives but Daniels fires back up!

Daniels drags Rush up, CLUBS him again and again, then runs, but Rush follows! CHOP! CHOP! But Daniels swings! Rush dodge to SUPERKICK! Rush roars, swings, but into a fireman’s carry! DEATH VALLEY DRIVER! Cover, TWO!! But into a KOJI KLUTCH!! Rush endures, Vance drags Rush’s leg to the ROPEBREAK! Fans boo but Daniels lets Rush go all the same. Daniels knows it was that damn dog, but Rush rolls Daniels up! WITH TIGHTS! TWO, and Rush swings again, but into the URENAGE! Daniels points to the corner and fans fire up! Daniels goes up, for the BEST MOONSAULT EVER onto knees!!

Rush OVERHEAD Belly2Belly suplexes Daniels into the corner! Rush makes sure Daniels sits up, and then he stomps away with both feet! Fans boo, Rush stomps around then runs corner to corner, BULL’S HORNS!! Cover, Rush wins!

Winner: Rush, by pinfall

Though it was a valiant effort, Christopher Daniels fought a 3v1 the entire time, he had no chance of winning out. Will Bryan Danielson also have no chance against those odds? Or will the American Dragon find a way to slay El Toro Blanco?


My Thoughts:

A really good Rampage here. The trios titles opening was quite the surprise, but it was a great match. The Firm looked good, but of course they also had the story of Ethan stealing the spotlight from his own teammates every chance he could. As such, The Elite win, and now we’re going to get a stacked episode of Dynamite. The trios titles, the tag titles, and eliminator matches for the women’s world title and men’s world title. Of those, I’m fairly confident The Elite retain their titles, that would only be their second defense and they have got to be heading to AEW Revolution with these belts. No idea who they’d face then, though.

Plenty of good promos again. Starks responding to the JAS gauntlet didn’t necessarily add anything, he’s of course going to find his way through. Malakai’s promo was equally good but it effectively established what’s going on with the story of House of Black and Eddie Kingston. Triple J and Best Friends are definitely going to have another match, and as I said before, I hope Paul Walter Hauser gets involved to avenge Triple J stealing his Golden Globe. And great new promo from Cole, though it doesn’t necessarily add anything more. Cole is surely going to be part of the Revolution card, and whoever he faces is going to put Cole over but in a very good match.

Really good match out of Swerve VS BPJ, but of course that as a Heel leading a faction, Swerve wins because his guys help out. But it also made sense for Dustin to show up and run the Mogul Affiliates off. As I sensed on Dynamite, Dustin is surely going to team up with BPJ and Brock Anderson against Mogul Affiliates in a Six Man Tag. And as AEW seems to struggle establishing new team names, I’m assuming Brian Pillman Jr. and Brock Anderson are gonna be “Lineage” (stylized LineAGE) as a sort of AEW version of Legacy. I say that cuz LineAGE was on BPJ’s tights. Dustin can also join LineAGE if he wants, and maybe LineAGE can get going in the Trios Division.

The Renegade Sisters got a good showing against Storm & Saraya, but of course they also lost to Storm & Saraya. And I suddenly had inspiration seeing Saraya & Storm spray paint big green L’s on the Renegades. Will Saraya & Storm be like The Outsiders, Nash & Hall, and they get an NWO moment at Revolution? The “third woman” will be someone who is currently Face and seems like they’re on AEW’s side. It probably won’t be Shida, she doesn’t seem to like how Saraya & Storm are going. But with Saraya & Storm wearing green and using green paint, and Ruby Soho having green hair, I wonder if Ruby is pushed to the point where she ends up seeing things Saraya’s way.

Still disappointing that Mark Henry’s segment is being trimmed down more and more, but I’m thinking it’s to give more time to the main event match. But this main event was a great main event, even though I just knew Daniels would lose. Rush VS Bryan will be great stuff, and I am sure Bryan will look close to losing because of Jose and Vance getting involved, but surely Bryan will find a way to win.

My Score: 8.6/10


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Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Results & Report! (2/3/23)

What is the State of the Bloodline?

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Roman Reigns responds to what happened at the Royal Rumble.

Though he is still Undisputed WWE Universal Champion, the Tribal Chief is without Jey Uso and without the Honorary Uce. What will Roman Reigns do about the Bloodline’s situation?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • SmackDown Tag Team Championships #1 Contenders Tournament Finals: Braun Strowman & Ricochet VS Imperium; Braun & Ricochet win and will challenge The Usos for the titles next week.
  • SmackDown Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair VS Sonya Deville; Charlotte wins and retains the title.
  • The Brawling Brutes VS The Viking Raiders w/ Valhalla; The Viking Raiders win.
  • Women’s Elimination Chamber Qualifier Fatal 4 Way: Shotzi Blackheart VS Shayna Baszler VS Zelina Vega VS Natalya; Natty wins and advances to the Raw Women’s Championship Elimination Chamber match.

PLAY BY PLAY

The Bloodline arrives.

Kayla Braxton is already on the scene as Jimmy Usos, Solo Sikoa, Paul Heyman and the Tribal Chief, Roman Reigns, exit the vehicle. Kayla wants a word on Jey Usos’ status after what we saw on Saturday, but Roman doesn’t give an answer. Heyman, however, says, “What a cold-blooded question from such a warm-hearted lady.” But at this time, the Bloodline will neither confirm nor deny Jey’s status within the group. But thanks for wearing black and red for them. The Wise Man heads out with the Head of the Table, what will Roman himself have to say later on tonight?

 

SmackDown Tag Team Championships #1 Contenders Tournament Finals: Braun Strowman & Ricochet VS Imperium w/ GUNTHER!

The Monster of All Monsters and the King of Flight were last minute substitutes, but they made the most of their opportunity! Will they take over that SmackDown Tag Division right as the Usos’ partnership is in question? Or will it be Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Vinci secure victory and make Der Ring General proud?

The teams sort out and Braun starts against the Pride of Italy. They circle, tie up, and Braun shoves Vinci away! Braun flexes and roars but Vinci talks strategy with Ludwig. They tag, Ludwig talks some trash but Vinci rushes in! Braun stays up from the chop block, he shoves Ludwig away, kicks Vinci out of the ring, and then DECKS Ludwig on the return! Imperium regroups outside and Braun dares them to bring it. Gunther talks strategy with his soldiers, a ring count starts, and fans rally up for Braun. Braun tags to Ricochet as Ludwig gets back in and they circle. They tie up, Ricochet waistlocks and headlocks.

Ludwig powers up and out, but Ricochet rolls off his back to dropkick him down! Ricochet throws forearms but Ludwig DECKS Ricochet! Ludwig drags Ricochet back up but Ricochet hits a JAWBREAKER! Ricochet brings Ludwig up but Vinci takes a swipe! Ricochet gets distracted and Ludwig CLOBBERS him with a EuroUpper! Braun is upset, he runs in around the way to CLOBBER Vinci! Braun stares Gunther down and Gunther backs away. Braun dares Gunther to try something now, but Ludwig DIVES! Only for Braun to catch him! Ludwig tries to fight free, but Vinci goes up and up and CROSSBODIES to wipe Braun out!

Fans rally for Braun while Gunther has Imperium regroup. The Monster and the high-flyer are in trouble as SmackDown goes to break.

SmackDown returns and Braun CLUBS Vinci. Braun scoops Vinci, Vinci slips free and POSTS Braun! Ludwig tags in, they have Braun stuck in the corner, and they DOUBLE DROPKICK! They push Braun in to cover, TWO! Gunther is frustrated but Ludwig rains down fists. Tag to Vinci, Imperium mugs Braun, and Vinci CLUBS away on Braun’s back. Vinci facelocks and grinds the hold but Braun fights up! Fans rally as Braun powers his way over a step at a time, and he TOSSES Vinci away! Hot tag to Ricochet, he springboards to CROSSBODY Ludwig! Ricochet runs to RANA Vinci, then he runs to RAM him in the corner!

Ricochet bumps Vinci off buckles, kicks him away, and springboards for a FLYING LARIAT! Ricochet keeps moving, STANDING SHOOTING STAR! Cover, TWO! Gunther is still worried as Ricochet has the fans rallying behind him. Ricochet brings Vinci up, fireman’s carries, but Vinci slips off to CLUB Ricochet and POST him! Ludwig tags in, they set Ricochet up like Braun, but Ricochet dodges! The dropkicks take Vinci out! Ludwig rushes in, Ricochet dodges to handspring and back elbow! Ludwig flounders to the corner, Braun runs in to BLAST Vinci away! Braun has Ricochet build speed, and gives him a boost to FLY! Direct hit and down goes Imperium!

Fans are thunderous, Ricochet is roaring, and Gunther is furious! Ricochet tells Gunther to back off, this is Imperium’s fight. Gunther shoves Ricochet, and the ref saw it! The ref EJECTS Gunther! Fans love it as now this is a fair fight! Gunther is fuming but Braun dares him to try something more. Ricochet gets in the ring but Vinci grabs at him! Ricochet kicks Vinci away but Ludwig is after him in the ropes! Ricochet shoves Ludwig away, but Ludwig and Vinci HIGH-LOW on the rebound! Cover, TWO!! Ricochet survives and Braun is shocked, too, as SmackDown goes to break!

SmackDown returns again and Ludwig brawls with Ricochet! Ricochet gets the edge, runs, but Ludwig UPPERCUTS! Ludwig whips, Ricochet reverses to V-TRIGGER! Ludwig wobbles, Ricochet fires off fists, and the ref counts. Ricochet roars as he lets off at 4, but Ludwig turns things around! Vinci tags in and springboards to CROSSBODY! PENALTY KICK from Ludwig! DOUBLE DROPKICKS to Braun! Vinci covers Ricochet, TWO! Ricochet is hanging tough and Imperium grows frustrated. Vinci drags Ricochet up, Ludwig tags in then climbs the corner, but Ricochet back drops Vinci! Ricochet drags Ludwig down to GAMANGIRI!

Ricochet brings Ludwig back up and reels him in to suplex but Ludwig slips out. Ludwig whips Ricochet to the corner, runs in, but blocks the kick! Tag to Vinci but Ricochet elbows Vinci away! Ricochet ROCKS Ludwig, ENZIGURIS, and goes up! But Ludwig GAMANGIRIS! ROCKET LAUNCH into the BRAINBUSTER!! Cover, Braun YANKS Vinci outta the ring! Fans are thunderous and Braun fires up! Ricochet stirs as the fans rally up and Braun reaches out. Vinci crawls in, both men go for their corners, hot tags to Ludwig and Ricochet! Braun rallies on Ludwig with big shoulder tackles! And a TOSS across the way!

Vinci runs in, springboards, but bounces off Braun’s body! Braun rips off his shirt but Ludwig UPPERCUTS! Braun LARIATS on return! “THAT’S IT!” Braun drags Ludwig up, reels him in, and fans fire up for the MONSTER BOMB!! Tag to Ricochet and he goes up onto Braun’s shoulders! MONSTROUS SWANTON!! Cover, Braun & Ricochet win!

Winners: Braun Strowman & Ricochet, by pinfall (NEW #1 contenders to the SmackDown Tag Team Championships)

Imperium belittled them as “sideshow circus freaks,” but these freaks are going to challenge the Usos next week! Will this be the perfect time to strike down the historic reign of Jimmy & Jey?

 

Backstage interview with Charlotte Flair.

Kayla is with The Queen, saying the world is buzzing with the Women’s Royal Rumble match winner, Rhea Ripley, choosing her as her WrestleMania opponent. But how does Charlotte feel? Charlotte says Mania will be epic. But tonight, she’s focused on Sonya Deville. “You cannot overlook someone who is as persistent as Sonya.” Sure, she complained to get here, but we’re in Carolina! And- Oh, here comes Sonya now. Sonya says Charlotte must mean they’re in Flair Country! “WOO~!” Yeah? Or more like, Hicksville, No Man’s Land, the middle of nowhere where no one wants to be, including Sonya herself.

But Sonya won’t let that stop her. She’s here for one reason and one reason only: The SmackDown Women’s Championship. And then it’ll be Sonya VS Rhea at Mania. Because Hollywood needs a star, and Sonya is a star! Charlotte chuckles and Sonya asks what’s so funny. Charlotte won’t be laughing when Sonya beats her in the ring. Charlotte says to leave this trash talk for the ring. Sonya says fine, she’ll see her in the ring. Will the Queen still have her crown after taking on the Jersey Deville?

 

SmackDown shares footage of WWE superstars at the LA Coliseum.

Just last night, in partnership with Fox Sports and NASCAR, The New Day and Rey Mysterio were with Michael Waltrip, Clint Bowyer and the official Clash at the Coliseum branded stock cars. However, The Judgment Day’s Dominik Mysterio, Finn Balor & Damian Priest had to crash the fun. Dom says this isn’t about celebrating Rey again, “hanging out with this old guy in pajamas.” Waltrip got upset but the New Day stepped in. Show some respect to the two-time Daytona winner. Finn says that’s the past! They’re with Ross Chastain, the current NASCAR champion! Waltrip tells Dom to be more respectful, but Dom knows what this is about.

Dom says Rey must want to race like they did back in the day when Dom was beating Rey at go-carts! Rey says if Dom wants to get spanked like when he was a kid, sure! Clint said they had two cars right here, so why not race for real? Get on the track and settle this! Everybody got real hyped for that, so Rey and Dom suited up. Waltrip hyped Rey up, and Chastain hyped Dom up. Rey and Dom got in the driver’s seats, put on the steering wheels and helmets, and Waltrip said, “Gentlemen! And the Judgment Day, I guess. Start! Your! Engines!” BOOGITY BOOGITY BOOGITY, and they’re off! Dom took an early lead but Rey was hot on his tail!

Dom was even talking trash, asking if anyone had a booster seat for Rey! And where’s the NOS? But Rey says Dom’s driving is as fake as his teardrop tattoo! Dom still had the lead, and said he learned this from his cellmate who was a getaway driver. Rey said the only “getaway driving” Dom’s ever done is in video games! Lap after lap, Dom holds onto the lead, until Rey makes a move! “If you ain’t first, you’re last!” They’re neck and neck, but Rey takes it at the checkered flag! And in the end, that’s what matters! The New Day celebrated with Rey, but Dom says Rey had to have cheated! Things got tense, the pit crews had to break this up! Will nothing but a fight settle this family dysfunction?

 

SmackDown Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair VS Sonya Deville!

The Queen reigns again, but the Pride Fighter says that’s an injustice. Will Sonya bring about her own form of justice and equality to SmackDown? Or will this home game in Flair Country be a big win on the Road to WrestleMania for Charlotte?

SmackDown returns and Charlotte makes her entrance. The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and we see who Rhea faces in Hollywood!

The bell rings and fans rally behind Charlotte already with “WOO~!” after “WOO~!” Sonya and Charlotte circle, feel things out, then tie up. Charlotte arm-drags Sonya, runs her over, then stands over her. Charlotte eggs Sonya on, “Where’s the trash talking now?” Sonya stands up, she and Charlotte tie up, and Charlotte waistlocks to SLAM Sonya down. Charlotte pushes Sonya to a press, ONE! Sonya stands but Charlotte wrenches an arm. Sonya pulls hair but the ref reprimands. Sonya wrenches, wristlocks, but Charlotte cartwheels to wrench back. Charlotte whips, Sonya reverses, but Charlotte goes up and out!

Charlotte BOOTS Sonya from the ropes, goes up top, and fans fire up as Charlotte leaps! CROSSBODY! Cover, ONE!! Sonya is out but Charlotte says that was still close. Charlotte runs in but only gets buckles! Sonya runs in but is put on the apron. Charlotte ROCKS Sonya, stands her up, and wrenches, but Sonya throws Charlotte by her hair! Sonya mocks the “WOO~!” but fans boo, and SmackDown goes to break.

SmackDown returns as Charlotte sits up, into a KICK from Sonya! And another! Sonya mocks the “WOO~” again, fans boo some more, but Sonya runs in, only for Charlotte to roll her up! TWO, and Sonya ROUNDHOUSES Charlotte back down! Cover, TWO! Charlotte survives but Sonya clamps on a chinlock. Sonya thrashes Charlotte around, says she can do this all day, but fans rally as Charlotte endures. Charlotte fights up, snapmares free, and then blocks forearms to give forearms! Sonya ROCKS Charlotte, but Charlotte blocks buckle bump to give buckle bump! Sonya staggers away, Charlotte stomps up, but Sonya kicks out a leg!

Sonya runs, Charlotte ducks the lariat and CLOBBERS Sonya! And again! Charlotte CHOPS and CHOPS and CHPOS! Fans “WOO~!” but Sonya swings, into a back suplex! Charlotte kips up and fans fire up! Charlotte runs in at the corner, but blocks boots! Charlotte ROCKS Sonya, climbs up and drops a knee on the knee! Sonya flounders, Charlotte runs to BOOT her down! Cover, TWO!! Sonya survives but Charlotte is actually amused. Sonya goes to ropes, Charlotte storms up and reels her in. Sonya holds ropes, elbows free, then whips, but Charlotte reverses! Sonya tumbles out to the apron, avoids the boot and HOTSHOTS the leg!

Sonya slides in, runs in and BOOTS Charlotte down! Cover, TWO!! Sonya can’t believe it! Sonya fumes while Charlotte crawls to a corner. Charlotte drags herself up, Sonya run sin but into a BACKBREAKER! But Sonya avoids the boot! Sonya KCIKS Charlotte, goes up the corner, and FLYING KNEES Charlotte down! Cover, TWO!!! Sonya is furious, but she drags Charlotte to center. Sonya stomps the leg, grins, and goes ‘WOO~!” Sonya steps through, Charlotte turns figure four into cradle! TWO!?!? Sonya escapes by nanoseconds! Fans boo but Charlotte storms up, only for Sonya to send her into buckles!

Sonya runs, into a LARIAT! Cover, TWO!! Charlotte drags Sonya to a drop zone, goes up top, and fans fire up for the MOONSAULT! Sonya BOOTS her back! And rolls her up! FEET ON THE ROPES! TWO!!! The ref reprimands but Charlotte still escapes! Sonya steps through, Charlotte kicks free of the figure four! Sonya comes back, sunset flips, but charlotte rolls through! Charlotte has the legs, “WOO~!” Figure Four, to FIGURE EIGHT!! Sonya taps, Charlotte wins!!

Winner: Charlotte Flair, by submission (still SmackDown Women’s Champion)

Sonya was so close and yet so far! But that is how good Charlotte Flair is now that she’s back on top! What will it take for even The Eradicator to take this title off Charlotte at WrestleMania?

 

The Bloodline sits in their private room.

Roman asks Jimmy, “Where’s your brother?” Jimmy doesn’t know. Jimmy didn’t talk to Jey? Haven’t heard from him. Roman isn’t sure if it’s just him, but don’t you find that disrespectful? Jey not only walks out, but he doesn’t care enough to communicate. It’s one thing to walk away, but to not hear from him for a whole week… Plus, don’t the Usos have a title match next week? “We don’t walk out on our obligations.” Roman can’t understand this. So he asks again: Has Jimmy talked to Jey? And Jimmy will say it again, he hasn’t heard from Jey. But Jey will be there, Jimmy has faith in him. But they all know Jey. He just needs time to cool off.

Roman repeats, “He’ll be there. he’ll be there for you. What about all of us? He gonna be there for the entire Bloodline? Huh? Solo, have you talked to your brother?” Jimmy says if he hasn’t heard from Jey, Jey isn’t talking to nobody, Uce. Nobody has heard from Jey. Roman says they don’t understand the urgency that is needed right now. Roman calls upon the Wise Man. “Yes, My Tribal Chief.” “Is it not WrestleMania season?” “It is WrestleMania Season, My Tribal Chief.” Then you ain’t gonna find Jey on the couch. Go find him now! Jimmy and Solo get up and head out. Will Main Event Jey be found at all tonight?

 

The Brawling Brutes VS The Viking Raiders w/ Valhalla!

“Butch” and Ridge the Fridge are going to avenge Sheamus against Erik & Ivar! Will the Bruiserweight and Yorkshire Grit be the ones to bring Ragnarök to the Vikings? Or will they end up just like the Celtic Connection?

SmackDown returns and the Vikings make their entrance. The teams sort out and Dunne starts with Ivar. They tie up, Ivar puts Dunne in a corner, but he lets off quickly. Dunne fires forearms but Ivar throws body shots and fast hands! The ref counts, Ivar lets off again, but then Ivar whips Dunne out to send him back into the corner hard! Dunne falls, Ivar drags him to the corner and tags in Erik. Erik whips Dunne into the corner, runs in, but into boots! Dunne brings Erik around, ties him up, and has an abdominal stretch, but he bends the fingers! Dunne powers Erik to the corner, fires forearms, and tags in Ridge.

Ridge runs side to side to forearm smash! Ridge keeps going, and he runs Erik over with a shoulder! Ridge drags Erik up but Erik wrenches out to ROCK him with a forearm! Erik suplexes but Ridge is too big for that! Ridge suplexes Erik up and over! Tag to Dunne, then Ridge clobbers Erik! Dunne BOOTS Ivar, and then the Brutes have Erik for DOUBLE BEATS OF THE BODHRAIN! They go to 7 before Dunne just fires off furiously! Erik flops down, Dunne stomps him off the apron, then he PLANCHAS! Erik gets clear, but Dunne stares “Valhalla” Sarah Logan down. Erik RAMS Dunne into barriers, then CLOBBERS him! Fans boo but SmackDown goes to break.

SmackDown returns again and Dunne pries his way out of a sleeper at the ropes! He SNAPS Erik’s fingers! Valhalla is shocked, Erik runs in, but Dunne goes up and over! Tag to Ridge, and he EXPLODERS Erik! Erik is back up, but he swings into another EXPLODER! Ridge blocks haymakers to throw HEADBUTTS, and then an OVERHEAD Belly2Belly! Ridge roars, “FIGHT NIGHT!” but runs into a KNEE! Tag to Ivar, Ridge CLOBBERS Erik but Ivar kicks low! Ivar reels Ridge in, lifts him up, but Ridge powers up and Alabama Lifts Ivar! ALABAMA SLAM!! Cover, TWO!! Valhalla is relieved as the War Beard survives!

Ridge snarls, he waistlocks Ivar but Ivar backs him into a corner. Ivar fires elbow after elbow, but Dunne tags in to ENZIGURI! Dunne runs in to BOOT Ivar! Erik tags in, he runs but into an ENZIGURI! Dunne runs, but into a LARIAT! ACE TEN MAO! Cover, ONE?!?! Tag to Ivar, and Ivar climbs. Erik hands Dunne off to Ivar, but Ridge drags Erik out! Erik RAMS Ridge into barriers! Dunne fights the slam, rains down elbows, and then SUPER STEINERS Ivar away! Cover, TWO!! Ivar survives and Valhalla breathes easy again. Dunne goes up top to MOONSAULT! But Ivar catches Dunne!! Ivar deadlifts Dunne, but Dunne slips into a SLEEPER!

Ivar RAMS Dunne into buckles, Erik tags in and Erik CLOBBERS Dunne! Ivar goes out, Ridge runs in, but into a HEEL KICK! Ivar tags back in, the Vikings have Dunne, and Valhalla nods. RAGNARÖK!! Cover, the Vikings win!

Winners: The Viking Raiders, by pinfall

The Brutes could not stop the brutality of Erik & Ivar, the raid continues on! Will the Viking Raiders be waiting on the other side of next week’s tag title showdown?

WAIT! Here comes Drew McIntyre and Sheamus! The Celtic Connection are back on their feet, and they brawl with the Vikings on the stage! Sheamus tackles Erik, McIntyre throws Ivar into railing! The forearms fly, and Sheamus RAMS Erik into a girder! McIntyre runs and RAMS Ivar into the LED screen! Ivar staggers, McIntyre BOOTS him down! Fans fire up as Sheamus & McIntyre stand tall! Will they turn the tides in this battle on the Road to WrestleMania?

 

Bray Wyatt sits in his rocking chair.

Like us, he was surely watching back the highlights of the Pitch Black Match from the Royal Rumble. But then Uncle Howdy walks over! He and Bray look at the camera together, does this mean they’re on the same side after all?

 

Women’s Elimination Chamber Qualifier Fatal 4 Way: Shotzi Blackheart VS Shayna Baszler VS Zelina Vega VS Natalya!

As we learned on Raw, there will be a Women’s Elimination Chamber to name Bianca Belair’s WrestleMania opponent! Raquel Rodriguez, Liv Morgan, Nikki Cross and Asuka are automatically in given their performance in the Women’s Rumble match. Raw will hold its own Fatal 4 on Monday, but who qualifies for the fifth spot here on Friday Night SmackDown?

SmackDown returns and the Queen of Harts makes her entrance, with the Wild Child, Queen of Spades and La Muneca already waiting. The bell rings and Natty rushes Shayna. Natty dodges Shayna’s haymaker, Shotzi ROCKS Shayna with a right, and then Natty fires off on Shayna. Vega rushes Shotzi but gets a kick. Natty bumps Shayna off buckles and stomps a mudhole! Shotzi throws Vega out, then goes after Shayna, even pushing Natty outta the way! Shotzi has her own bone to pick with Shayna, but then Natty throws Shotzi away. Natty stomps Shayna out of the ring, Shotzi rolls Natty up! TWO, Shotzi headlocks but Natty powers out.

Shotzi runs Natty over, fans fire up and Shotzi runs, but Vega trips her up! Vega drags Shotzi out, THROWS her to the barriers, then laughs as she goes into the ring. Vega and Natty tie up, Vega gets around to roll Natty up, TWO! Vega KICKS from below, covers, TWO! We see Liv and Raquel are here watching backstage, already representing SmackDown in the Elimination Chamber. Vega drags Natty up but Natty ROCKS Vega! Natty scoops Vega but Vega slips off and pushes her away. Vega then tilt-o-whirls, and hits a CODE RED! Cover, Shayna kicks it apart! Shayna gut wrenches Vega to a SLAM!

Shotzi returns, Shayna gets around and hooks Shotzi up, BACKBREAKER! Shayna grabs Shotzi’s arm and stands on her head. Shotzi flails, fans boo, but Natty CLUBS Shayna down! Natty drags Shayna up, throws her to the apron, and runs in. Shayna avoids the shoulder to KICK Natty! Vega trips Shayna but Shayna CLOBBERS her for it! Shayna gets back in, and KNEES Natty down! Shayna grins as she covers, TWO!! Natty survives that nasty knee that once broke her nose, and Shayna soaks up the heat from the fans while SmackDown goes to break.

SmackDown returns again and Shayna pulls on Shotzi’s arm in a top wristlock. Shotzi fights up and fires body shots but Shayna DECKS her! Shayna stands on Shotzi’s arm, but she avoids the stomp! Roll up, ONE, but Shotzi BOOTS, KNEES and ROLLING ELBOWS Shayna, to then QUESTION MARK KICK! Shayna ends up on ropes, Shotzi runs to SENTON! Shayna bails out, Shotzi DIVES to take her out at the ramp! Fans fire up but Vega goes up top! Vega SUPER MOONSAULTS onto Shotzi and Shayna! All three are down, Natty hurries out to DECK Vega! Natty puts Shotzi in, runs and trips Shotzi, to the SHARPSHOOTER!

Fans fire up as Shotzi endures, but Vega hits a BULLDOG on Natty! Shotzi chicken wings Vega to TIGER SUPLEX! But Shayna reels Shotzi in for a GERMAN SUPLEX! Shayna then drags Vega up into the KIRAFUDA KLUTCH!! Vega flails, but she’s fading! Natty runs in, Shayna drops Vega to duck the discus! KIRAFUDA for Natty!! But Natty throws Shayna out of the ring! Natty hurries to get Vega for the SHARPSHOOTER!! Vega taps, Natty wins!!

Winner: Natalya, by submission (advances to Elimination Chamber)

The Queen of Harts is going to be the hometown hero in Montreal! But will that help her take the golden ticket to Hollywood?

 

Roman Reigns still waits in his private room.

Heyman apologizes to the Tribal Chief. Jey’s phone goes straight to voicemail. Heyman wants to say more, but he holds his tongue. Jimmy and Solo return, and they also say they got nothing. A big fat zero. Roman sighs. “I just don’t understand. Of all the times of year for this to happen. We were doing so good. No problems, no hiccups.” Roman says they know how much he has on his plate. That they understand “the stress and the burden of this position.” He feels like he’s being pulled in two different directions, and spread too thin. He loves them, and is sorry for speaking tot hem the way he did.

Jimmy says not to worry about it. Roman says he needs them. He needs them to be as strong as they ever were. Because if they’re not, there is no more #WeTheOnes. Wise Man had catering sent to the bus, it’s a whole bunch of sushi, steaks, etc. It’s good stuff. They can go to the bus and eat up while Roman goes to the ring to handle business. He needs them with him. They understand? Yeet. Then enjoy. He’ll catch up with them later. Jimmy says okay, and has Solo tag along. What will Roman say about Sami, Jey and the Bloodline as a whole? We find out, after the break.

 

BREAKING NEWS for next week!

On top of the SmackDown Tag Team Championships, we will see a Fatal 4 Way match to name a #1 contender to the Intercontinental Championship! Rey Mysterio VS Madcap Moss VS Karrion Kross VS Santos Escobar! Who will win to go after Der Ring General?

 

Roman Reigns heads to the ring.

Paul Heyman is the only one to accompany the Undisputed WWE Universal Champion as his reign now reaches 887 DAYS! Roman lifts the belts for the pyro, then continues to the ring. As it stands, Roman Reigns will headline WrestleMania against the American Nightmare, the Men’s Rumble Winner, Cody Rhodes, but even that seems to be secondary to what is going on within The Bloodline. Roman and Heyman stand in the ring, and Roman lifts the belts again for the second round of pyro. Heyman then hands Roman a mic while fans chant, “SAMI! SAMI!” Roman lets that settle down before he says, “Greenville, South Carolina… ACKNOWLEDGE ME!”

Fans are still rather torn between cheers, jeers, and the chant of “SAMI! SAMI!” Roman was going to ask them who they want him to talk about, but it’s obvious. Roman says he’d rather sit here and talk about Cody Rhodes. “Y’know, the guy that won the Royal Rumble, the #1 contender. Someone who actually deserves my attention. But you simple folks have reduced me to talking about the past.” Fans boo, then start up the “SAMI! SAMI!” again. Roman says fine, if they want to hear about Sami, he’ll talk about Sami. “But remember, there’s two sides to every story, so you’re gonna hear mine.” Fans boo, they already don’t like that.

Roman says that in order to hear his side of the story, “we’ve gotta go all the way back to WarGames.” Heyman remembers when Roman looked Sami in his eyes that Roman saw everything he needed to see. “Would you like to know what I saw that night? I saw greed. I saw the same thing that I see in everybody that I ever interact with in my life nowadays. If a restaurant was lucky enough to have me, when I walk in, the hostess, the people in the kitchen, the waitress, the waiter, they all say the same thing. ‘I want this.’ It’s not, ‘Tribal Chief, it’s great to see you.’ No, it’s ‘What can I do for you, like I haven’t already done enough?'”

So Roman does the same thing for Sami, he gives Sami the opportunity of a lifetime, and Sami just uses him, the Bloodline and the Island of Relevancy! “No different than each and every one of you, because you all want, want, want. You can never give back, huh?” BUT THEN SAMI ATTACKS!! Sami came outta the crowd in a hoodie but it’s clear as day that’s him! Sami rains down furious fists and fans are loving it! Sami tears off the hoodie to reveal his new Sami Zayn shirt! Roman staggers up, Sami fires off, but Roman throws knees in return! Roman stomps Sami down, fans boo, but Roman shakes out the stars.

Roman tells Heyman to get a chair, so Heyman gets a chair. Heyman hands the chair to Roman, but Sami is back up! Sami SPEARS Roman?!?! Fans are thunderous as Sami hits Roman with his own move! And then Sami looks down at the chair. Fans are chanting for “SAMI! SAMI!” and Sami swings! Roman avoids the chair shot and retreats up the ramp! Sami shouts in the mic, “ROMAAAN!! You’re wrong about me. I never wanted anything from you. I never wanted anything from you!! Until now. I want something from you now, and I’m gonna take it. Because I am coming after you and the WWE UNDISPUTED UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP!!”

Fans are going nuts, and Roman is flabbergasted! But then Jimmy SUPERKICKS Sami down! Solo and Jimmy mug Sami! Fans boo but Roman grins as Solo rains down HEADBUTTS! Solo stands Sami up, SAMOAN SPIKE!! Sami sputters but the Bloodline isn’t done with him! They sit Sami in the corner, rain down fists, and then they put the chair around Sami’s head! They’re gonna Riddle him! Solo runs in, but Roman stops him!? Roman looks down on Sami and says, “You want something, huh? You want something from me?” Roman takes the chair away, and fans are chanting “WE WANT JEY! WE WANT JEY!”

Roman tells Sami to listen to that. The fans want Jey, but Roman doesn’t have Jey because Sami broke up the Bloodline. The Right Hand Man isn’t here because of Sami! Sami was given the keys to the kingdom, the invitation to the Promised Land, and Sami repays them by breaking up the family! Sami will get what he wants, but Roman will get what he wants. Sami and Roman will be in Montreal at the Elimination Chamber! Sami broke up Roman’s family, so Roman will break Sami in front of his family! Sami’s parents, wife, kids, friends, relatives, everyone he’s connected to! They will see what happens when you mess with Roman’s family! “I’ll see you soon!”

Sami is still down, fans still chant for him, but then they boo as Roman takes the belts back. If this is what Sami wants, then this is simple to Roman! This isn’t a dream, this is reality! Sami should’ve just stayed in the Bloodline. Roman lifts the titles over Sami, will this be what we see in Montreal in just two weeks?


My Thoughts:

This was a great SmackDown to follow the Royal Rumble! For one, it flew by, though that could be because of the recap packages and only the four matches. I did like the bit we got out of Bray and Uncle Howdy, though it was rather short. The NASCAR racing segment was cheesy like a lot of pro-wrestling corporate synergy stuff is, but it continues to further the plot point that Dom will just get in Rey’s face anywhere and everywhere. With Rhea wanting after Charlotte, it is obvious that the rest of Judgment Day will move over to SmackDown with her, they will have a new feud with Rey, and New Day might even back Rey up for some really good Six Man Tags.

Speaking of Charlotte, she and Sonya had a decent promo before their match, which logically wasn’t the main event because it was a given Charlotte would win. Even so, Sonya looked strong in that match, just not strong enough. And great move having the Women’s Fatal 4 be the “main event” as far as matches. Shotzi, Shayna, Vega and Natty are all great talents, and it makes sense to give Montreal their hometown hero of Natty in the Women’s Elimination Chamber match. Personally, I would’ve given the nod to Shayna, she would be just as good in the match, and if she were to move over to Raw, she could still have great matches against Bianca Belair and others past Mania.

The Brutes VS Viking Raiders was a really good tag match, but of course the Vikings were gonna win that. And given that, of course Drew & Sheamus were gonna get after them. I don’t know if it’s gonna be in a Donnybrook or a Viking Rules match, but we need one of those at Elimination Chamber for the blow-off of McIntyre & Sheamus VS Erik & Ivar. They need to go wild and just beat each other down. I also like the news of the Intercontinental Championship #1 Contender’s Fatal 4. Rey, Moss, Kross and Escobar is a great field, but I can’t be sure who faces Gunther. Well, outside of Moss. I don’t see him pulling out a win there, but at the same time, Rey and Kross might cancel out. Escobar VS Gunther so that we could get Legado Del Fantasma VS Imperium would be really cool.

Speaking of Imperium, great opening tag to finish the SmackDown Tag Title tournament. Braun and Ricochet getting after Gunther to get him ejected was good stuff, and of course Braun & Ricochet as the Faces win. Their story ties into the Bloodline dysfunction, and the promos from The Bloodline was good stuff. Jey is MIA and radio silent, which is still a big part of things. Roman again had to walk back his anger in order to keep Solo and Jimmy on his side, and then Roman had a great promo to close the night, along with Sami’s blindside attack. Sami wanting the titles is a natural move, but I have a feeling Sami loses in Montreal to really put heat on Roman. As much as we all love Sami, as great as Sami truly is, Roman VS Cody got a really good Mania Hollywood graphic, WWE’s not changing that.

My Score: 8.8/10


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