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Mitchell’s NJPW WrestleKingdom 15 Results & Report! (1/5/21)

WrestleKingdom 15, Night 2!

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NJPW WrestleKingdom 15

NJPW’s massive new year event is wrapping up!

Night One was big but Night Two will be even bigger! Will Sanada settle things with Evil? Will Jay White once again be on top of NJPW?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • KOPW 2021 Fatal 4 Way: Toru Yano VS Bad Luck Fale VS Chase Owens VS BUSHI; Yano wins and is the provisional Mr. KOPW 2021.
  • IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championships: El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru VS Ryusuke Taguchi & Master Wato w/ Hiroyoshi Tenzan; Desperado & Kanemaru win and retain the titles.
  • NEVER Openweight Championship: Shingo Takagi VS Jeff Cobb; Takagi wins and retains the title.
  • SANADA VS EVIL; Sanada wins.
  • IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship: Taiji Ishimori VS Hiromu Takahashi; Hiromu wins and becomes the new IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion.
  • IWGP Heavyweight & Intercontinental Double Championship: Kota Ibushi VS Jay White w/ Gedo; Ibushi wins and retains the titles.

PLAY BY PLAY

KOPW 2021 Fatal 4 Way: Toru Yano VS Bad Luck Fale VS Chase Owens VS BUSHI!

Mr. KOPW 2020 is back in the hunt! But with two Bullet Club members in this match, are the odds against him? Or will the Producer find a way like he always has?

Yano is wary as Owens and Fale wait for him at the ropes. They hold the ropes open for him to enter but he wants them to back off. The ref tells Bullet Club to back away but they tell the ref to shut up. Bushi also stays out for the moment, much like he did during the New Japan Rambo. The bell rings so this match is starting as it is. Owens and Fale figure this is every man for himself, and they throw up the Too Sweet, but Fale makes it an eye poke! Cover, but Bushi and Yano both get in to break it! Not quite the finger poke of doom but it was close! Fale goes after Yano, Owens goes after Bushi! Fale throws Yano out then pursues while Owens keeps on Bushi.

Fale whips Yano hard into railing while Owens runs Bushi over. Bullet Club regroups and goes after Bushi in a corner. They double whip Bushi corner to corner, but Bushi boots Owens away, then boots Fale. Bushi hops up to leap and double missile dropkick! Owens falls, Fale staggers, Bushirooni, but Yano rolls Bushi up! TWO, and Bushi kicks to whip Yano. Yano reverses, to undo the buckle pad! Yano then dodges Bushi to send him into bare buckles! The ref reprimands but there’s no stopping Yano now! Except Owens grabs the pad and takes it away. Bushi kicks Yano low, whips him to Owens to SMACK! Home run for Owens!

Owens throws up the Too Sweet to say good job, but Bushi rakes his eyes! Bushi whips Owens, Owens reverses but Bushi huricanranas Owens out! Bushi runs but Fale trips him and drags him out hard! Owens clubs Yano, then puts him in and Fale is there. Yano is afraid and begs for mercy but Fale stomps him down! Owens and Fale split the wishbone on Yano! Who gets the wish? Fans rally up but Fale and Owens put Yano at the ropes for the “back massage,” aka standing on Yano with their combined weight! Fans still rally for Yano but Fale tells them to shut up. Fale and Owens mug Yano with kick after kick.

Fale covers but he holds the ropes. The ref won’t allow that, but Owens stands on Yano’s hand so he can’t reach. Fale and Owens double whip, body shot to knee lift to LARIAT! Owens covers, but Bushi breaks it! Fale stomps Bushi, then he and Owens drag Bushi up to whip corner to corner. Bushi hits bare buckles, but he dodges Owens to put him into those same buckles. Bushi boots Fale, then BULLDOG DROPKICK COMBOS! Fans fire up as Bushi baits Fale and dumps him out! Bushi builds speed but has to stop as Fale staggers. Bushi PLANCHAS instead! Direct hit, but then Bushi runs to DIVE onto Owens! Direct hit into railing!

Bushi fires up and puts Owens in and fans fire up with him! Bushi FISHERMAN SCREWS Owens, covers, but Yano breaks it! Yano drags Bushi up, and whips him into the bare buckles! But Fale runs Yano over! Fale whips Yano, Yano holds ropes then dodges Fale to SLAP him! Yano scoops but falls over with Fale’s weight! Cover, Bushi breaks it! Fale whips Bushi but Bushi dropkicks the leg out! Owens runs in but Bushi dodges and the BOOT hits Fale! Bushi runs but Owens spins him to a backslide. Bushi slips out, Owens tries to tuck him in but Bushi fights out. Owens ducks the enziguri but not the mule kick! BACKSTABBER! Bushi goes up and fans fire up, MX- BLOCKED!

Owens bell claps Bushi, reels him in and tucks the arms, but Bushi fights out to back drop! Owens sunsets but Bushi sits down, TWO! Bushi knees low, runs but into the JEWEL TRIGGER! Owens calls to Fale and they combine, GRENADE GERMAN! Bridging cover, but Fale sweeps Owens’ legs! Fale takes the cover, but Owens breaks it! Bullet Club is arguing over who gets to win! “I win, we win!” “No, you win, you win. If I win, we win!” The ref tries to get them to stop arguing, but they both go after him! Yano sneaks in to DOUBLE LOW BLOW Bullet Club! Then he covers Bushi! Yano wins!!

Winner: Toru Yano, by pinfall (provisional Mr. KOPW 2021)

See? Yano found a way to win! But he only had to be Mr. KOPW 2020 for a few months. Will Yano be able to hold onto this new trophy for an entire year?

 

IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championships: El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru VS Ryusuke Taguchi & Master Wato w/ Hiroyoshi Tenzan!

Suzuki-Gun’s Rogue Luchador was so close to being Best of the Super Juniors, but he and the Heel Master still have a prize to defend! Will they thwart the Funky Weapon and Way of the Grandmaster to open the new year?

The introductions are made, the belts are raised, and the teams sort out. Desperado starts against Wato, and Wato starts with a BIG shotgun dropkick! Desperado knocks into Kanemaru and then Wato stomps Desperado down! Wato throws forearms, knees, and more forearms! Desperado is on the ropes and he wants time, but Wato throws more forearms and stomps. Wato whips, Desperado reverses but Wato BOOTS Kanemaru! Wato dodges Desperado, but Desperado boots back! Desperado CHOPS, runs, but Wato puts him on the apron. Wato sweeps the legs, fans fire up with him as he builds speed, and Wato TORNILLOS! Direct hit and Desperado is sent into railing!

Fans fire up as Wato puts Desperado in the ring and stomps him down. Wato throws a big forearm and puts Desperado in the corner. Tag to Taguchi and Wato brings Desperado up. Taguchi is up top and he drops an ax handle on Desperado’s arm. Taguchi gives Desperado point blank hip attacks, then runs, but Desperado runs the other way. Taguchi runs, and dares Desperado to crisscross with him. Desperado just watches Taguchi go back and forth over and over, until Kanemaru trips Taguchi up! Desperado sucker punches Wato, Kanemaru whips Taguchi into railing! Kanemaru wraps Taguchi’s leg around railing and BOOTS it!

Desperado drags Wato up and whips him into Tenzan! Kanemaru clubs Taguchi down then stomps the leg. Kanemaru drags Taguchi up and puts him in, and Desperado goes after the leg with a knee drop! Tag to Kanemaru and Kanemaru stomps Taguchi’s leg. Kanemaru YANKS on the leg, then Desperado gets in with a chair! The ref tells Desperado to go to the corner but Desperado distracts the ref. Kanemaru drags Taguchi over to the chair to SMASH the knee down on it! Taguchi writhes and Desperado taunts Wato but the ref keeps Wato back. Kanemaru tags Desperado and Desperado covers, TWO!

Desperado stomps Taguchi’s leg, talks trash then drags him up, but Taguchi CHOPS back! And CHOPS again! And again! Desperado kicks the bad leg, then sucker punches Wato! Tag to Kanemaru and Kanemaru drags Taguchi up to whip to ropes, and dropkick the legs out! Cover, TWO! Taguchi rolls away but Kanemaru stomps his leg down. Kanemaru talks trash as he keeps stomping, then he runs, only for Taguchi to block the kick! Taguchi throws forearms but Kanemaru rakes eyes! Kanemaru whips, Taguchi reverses, but Kanemaru holds ropes to deny the hip attack! Fans rally as Kanemaru runs, Taguchi somersaults to HIP ATTACK! Hot tag to Wato!

Wato DECKS Kanemaru, DECKS Desperado, then gets around Kanemaru for a SLINGBLADE! Fans fire up as Wato goes to the apron. Wato springboards in, FLYING UPPERCUT! Cover, TWO! Wato keeps focus as he drags Kanemaru up. Wato wrenches, reels him in, but Kanemaru holds off the Mouse Trap! Wato knees low, runs, but the ref is used as a shield! Kanemaru BOOTS, whips and runs in at the corner, but Wato elbows him away. Wato runs, the ref is used as a shield again, and Kanemaru rakes eyes! Wato still back kicks, and he runs again, but again the ref is used as a shield!

Wato shoves the ref back at Kanemaru, Kanemaru shoves him away, and Kanemaru ducks the Dreamcast Kick! Kanemaru pushes the ref yet again, and he ENZIGURIS Wato down! Fans cheer that creative exchange and Kanemaru tags Desperado. Desperado talks trash as he stomps Wato, but Wato kicks! Desperado blocks it to elbow the leg, then he reels Wato in for a suplex. Wato slips out, spins Desperado and KICKS him down! Fans fire up as Wato goes to his corner, tag to Taguchi! Taguchi aims and runs, but into an atomic drop! Desperado pushes Taguchi to a corner but Taguchi goes up the corner and headscissors.

Desperado blocks the throw, so Taguchi reels him into the Funky Weapon! Taguchi rams Desperado into his own ass again and again and again! And again! Fans fire up and Taguchi runs, HIP ATTACK! Fans fire up even more and Taguchi drags Desperado back up. Taguchi suplexes, uno amigo! Dos amigos! THREE A- NO! Desperado blocks to suplex but Taguchi fights that off, THREE AMIGOS! Cover, TWO! Desperado survives but Taguchi keeps his cool. Taguchi drags Desperado back up, hooks the arms but Desperado fights out to Guitarra, but Taguchi slips out! Taguchi gets Desperado in the inverted Gory Especial, but Desperado fights out of the Vertebreaker to torture rack!

Taguchi fights that off, ducks the straight right, to INVERTED EXPLODER! And KIP UP! Fans fire up as Taguchi calls upon the powers of Strong Style! “ORAYO!” BUM- Kanemaru dropkicks the legs out! Wato is back but Kanemaru DECKS him! Desperado gives Taguchi a SHIN BREAKER, and Kanemaru dropkicks the leg! STRETCH MUFFLER! Kanemaru keeps Wato down with a headlock, but Taguchi moves around! Desperado gets NUMERO DOS! Fans rally, Taguchi rolls but Desperado holds on! Wato gets in to CLUB Desperado down! Taguchi is free but damage has been done. Kanemaru drags Wato out to ROCK with haymakers!

Desperado fires up, reels Taguchi in, but Taguchi fights off the lift! Desperado kicks the bad leg, tries again, but Taguchi trips him to OH MY GAH ANKLE! Desperado flails, reaches around, but Taguchi drags Desperado away. Wato is in, they put Desperado on ropes, Wato hits 619! Taguchi chicken wings Desperado, DODON BUSTER! Cover, but Kanemaru gets past Wato to break it! Wato throws Kanemaru out, then coaches Taguchi up. Taguchi drags Desperado up while Wato climbs but Kanemaru anchors Wato! Taguchi throws Desperado away to DECK Kanemaru! ENZIGURI for Desperado!

Taguchi drags Desperado back up, chicken wings again, DODON- VICTORY ROLL! TWO!! Wato was a split second behind breaking it, but he spins Desperado to the MOUSE TRAP DRIVER!! Then Taguchi hits BUMAYE!! Cover, TWO!?!? Kanemaru CLOBBERS Wato on the outside but Taguchi drags Desperado up. Desperado reaches for ropes, Kanemaru rushes in with his whiskey bottle, but Taguchi shoves Desperado into Kanemaru! Taguchi brings Desperado up but STRAIGHT RIGHT! PINCHE LOCO!! Cover, Suzuki-Gun wins!!

Winners: El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru, by pinfall (still IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions)

Taguchi was so close but still so far from having the tag titles! Will Desperado & Kanemaru hold onto these titles for a long, long time? But when Kanemaru goes to add insult to injury, Tenzan runs him and Desperado off! Will Kanemaru & Desperado have to be very careful who they bully?

 

NEVER Openweight Championship: Shingo Takagi VS Jeff Cobb!

The Last Dragon and the Hawaiian Hulk threw down in World Tag League 2020, and weren’t satisfied with how it all ended. Now they throw down on the biggest stage of NJPW’s calendar, who will be on top of NJPW’s most versatile division?

Fans cheer and rally as the two stare down from across the way. Takagi approaches, Cobb follows and they tie up. Cobb shoves Takagi away, they tie up again and Cobb shoves Takagi away again. They get forehead to forehead, shove back and forth, then the forearms fly! Fans fire up as they’re fast and furious already! Neither man is backing down but Takagi gets the edge. Takagi headlocks, Cobb powers out and the two collide. Neither falls so Takagi runs again. Takagi rams Cobb, Cobb rebounds but blocks the hip toss! Takagi keeps trying but Cobb throws a body shot. Cobb swings but Takagi ducks and they collide again.

Cobb rebounds, rams Takagi to a corner, but Takagi dodges as Cobb runs in. Takagi hits that hip toss! Fans fire up as Takagi keeps moving, and Takagi runs Cobb over! Cover, ONE!! And with power enough to send Takagi to ropes! Takagi is surprised but he keeps moving. Cobb drops, hurdles and dropkicks Takagi down! Fans cheer the insane athleticism from Cobb! Cobb whips Takagi out hard, and fans rally up as Cobb goes out after him. Cobb CLUBS Takagi hard in the back! And then headbutts him in the back, too! Cobb brings Takagi around, and whips him into railing! The ref wants this to return to the ring but Cobb CHOPS Takagi, then whips him again.

Takagi reverses but Cobb blocks to reverse again! Cobb sends Takagi into railings, but Takagi comes back, only to run into an OVERHEAD BELLY2BELLY! Fans cheer the superhuman strength! The ref checks on Takagi but he’s somehow okay to continue. Cobb goes to the ring as fans rally, “TA-KA-GI!” A ring count begins and climbs but Cobb goes out to fetch Takagi. Cobb puts Takagi in to win this properly and fans cheer. Cobb stomps Takagi, knees him against ropes, then CLUBS him on the back. Cobb whips Takagi to ropes then elbows him down hard! Cover, TWO! Another cover, TWO! Takagi refuses to stay down and Cobb grows frustrated.

Cobb drags Takagi up, wraps him in a bearhug, but Takagi endures. Takagi bell claps over and over until Cobb lets go. But Cobb still suplexes Takagi up and over! Cover, TWO! Cobb slaps Takagi around and eggs him on. Takagi gets up, wraps arms around Cobb, but Cobb elbows free. Cobb runs but into Takagi’s elbow! JAB! LARIAT- Cobb stays up!? Cobb shoves Takagi to elbow, JAB, and- No, Takagi catches the clothesline into a waistlock! Cobb resists the lift, they go to ropes, and Takagi uses the rebound for the SAIDO! Fans fire up while Cobb tumbles to the ropes. Fans rally behind Takagi as he goes over to Cobb on the apron.

Takagi drags Cobb up and fireman’s carries, but Cobb blocks! Cobb shoves Takagi away, Takagi elbows back but Cobb CLUBS him! Cobb reels Takagi back in, hoists him up top, then gets him for a crucifix! Takagi slips free, runs and BLASTS Cobb off the apron! Takagi keeps moving to FLY!! The somersault tope takes Cobb down at the ramp! Fans fire up again as Takagi gets to his feet first. The ring count starts, Takagi takes a moment but puts Cobb in at 8 of 20. Cobb gets up, Takagi runs in at the corner, corner clothesline to DDT! Takagi goes up top?! FALLING ELBOW! Cover, TWO! Takagi keeps focus as fans continue to rally up.

Cobb rises, Takagi brings him up, but Cobb resists the Gory Especial! Cobb swings Takagi to a corner, runs in but into boots! Takagi runs but into an ATHLETIC PLEX! Both men are down and fans fire up! Cobb and Takagi go to opposite corners, Cobb runs in and leaps for the big uppercut! Takagi wobbles into the gut wrench suplex! Cobb rolls through to keep the gut wrench and suplex again! Cobb isn’t done there, but Takagi holds off the third. Cobb shifts to a powerbomb but Takagi RANAS?! Cobb staggers into the Gory Especial! That’s a lot to lift, though! Cobb turns things around to get the crucifix! SIT-OUT RAZOR’S EDGE!! Cover, TWO!! Takagi survives and fans are thunderous!

Cobb gets up first and drags Takagi up to whip. Takagi holds ropes and then BOOTS Cobb! Takagi runs but Cobb LARIATS! But Takagi fireman’s carries to a DEATH VALLEY DRIVER! Fans fire up again as both men slowly rise. Cobb goes to a corner, Takagi fires up with “OI! OI! OI!” and fans clap along! Takagi runs in at the corner, BIG clothesline! Takagi hoists Cobb up top, climbs up to join him, and goes way up, for a SUPERPLEX! Fans are thunderous again as Takagi says that’s still not enough! Takagi drags Cobb back by his legs, wheelbarrow GERMAN! But again, Takagi knows that’s not enough to stop Cobb, so he brings Cobb back up.

Takagi runs, SLIDING- Cobb stops Takagi cold! And hits an EXPLODER! Takagi gets up, and he gives Cobb an EXPLODER! Cobb is dazed but sits up and Takagi shouts at him. The two titans head for each other, they give junkyard dog headbutts, then start giving SLAP after SLAP! And forearm after forearm! Cobb gets the edge, but Takagi gives it back from all sides! Takagi eggs Cobb on, Cobb ROCKS him! Cobb talks trash, Takagi JABS back! Cobb SUPERKICKS, Takagi LARIATS! Cobb stays up to DEAD LIFT GERMAN! But Takagi PUMPING BOMBERS! Takagi hits Cobb so hard, TAKAGI falls out of the ring! Fans rally up as both men are down and a ring count starts.

Takagi stirs, drags himself up at 8 of 20, but flops back down. Takagi gets back up at 12, staggers at 14, still flounders at 17, but jumps in at 19.9! Into a PILEDRIVER!! Cover, TWO!?!? Fans are thunderous again as Takagi survives! Cobb stalks Takagi to ropes, drags him up, whips him to ropes, but Takagi flops over! Cobb hauls Takagi back up, reels him in, but Takagi slips out to CHOP BLOCK the leg! Cobb hobbles, Takagi gets the leg, DRAGON SCREW! Takagi isn’t done there, he roars and pump handles Cobb, for MADE IN JAPAN!! Cover, TWO?!!? Cobb survives but Takagi is too sore to be frustrated. Fans rally back up, Takagi drags himself over to drag Cobb back up.

Takagi point-blank lariats, and again, but Cobb stays up. Takagi keeps trying, but Cobb headbutts! Cobb runs, Takagi clotheslines him at the ropes! Takagi runs, Cobb dodges, GERMAN! Cobb whips, scoops, TOUR OF THE ISLANDS! But Cobb can’t cover, his leg holds him back!! His leg couldn’t support the weight that long! Cover, ROPEBREAK! Cobb gets that leg for another cover, TWO!!! Takagi survives again and Cobb is shocked! Takagi sits up in a daze but Cobb hobbles over. Cobb brings Takagi to the corner, climbs up, and dead lifts! Takagi stops the superplex halfway but Cobb throws forearms and headbutts!

Takagi resists the scoop, headbutts back, then bumps Cobb off the buckles! Takagi goes around to bring Cobb off the corner for a POWERBOMB! Both men are down but the fans are still fired up! Takagi gets back to the corner and he shouts at Cobb. Cobb rises slowly as the fans rally up. Takagi powers up and runs, PUMPING- No, Cobb elbows, JABS and LARIATS! Whip and scoop, but Takagi pulls hair to resist the Tour! Cobb shoves Takagi and scoops him, for a FALL AWAY MOONSAULT?! Cobb drags Takagi up, whips again, PUMPING BOMBER! Cobb stays up and fans are thunderous, as Takagi runs in again! Double clotheslines collide, but neither falls!

Another collision, Takagi headbutts, JABS, then HEADBUTTS! Takagi has fans fire up as he scoops Cobb, to EXPLODER Cobb again! Fans clap with “OI! OI! OI!” for Takagi as he gets back up. Cobb flounders into PUMPING BOMBER!! But Takagi can’t cover, and Cobb is floundering around again! Takagi reels Cobb in, pump handle and rack, LAST OF THE DRAGONS!!! Cover, Takagi wins!!

Winner: Shingo Takagi, by pinfall (still NEVER Openweight Champion)

That was beyond superhuman from both men! But in the end, The Dragon slays the Hulk! But it seems Cobb did win Takagi’s respect. Is it only a matter of when, not if, we see these two battle for this title again?

 

SANADA VS EVIL w/ Dick Togo!

The Cold Skull and King of Darkness were an incredible tag team, having won back-to-back World Tag League tournaments, and winning the IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Championships multiple times. But it would seem individual ambition motivated Evil into turning his back on his friends. Will Sanada make Evil regret leaving everything behind?

The elaborate ring attire is put aside, Evil and Dick give a Low Sweet, and the bell rings. Sanada and Evil stare down as fans rally up already. Fans clap “SA-NA-DA!” as he and Evil slowly circle. They approach, feel out the grapple, and Evil kicks low to throw Sanada out. Sanada gets in right as Evil goes out, and fans cheer. Evil wants Sanada to stay back while he goes around the way, then Evil slides in. Sanada rushes in, Evil catches him but Sanada narrowly avoids the STO! Sanada dragon sleepers, Evil spins it around to a dragon sleeper of his own, but Sanada wants the STO! Evil gets away and fans cheer as these two show just how familiar they are with each other.

Fans rally as the two circle again, and they both kick! They both block and then argue who lets go first. They both put the other’s foot down, but Evil holds on! Evil gives the foot to the ref but Sanada has the ref let go. Sanada gets Evil’s foot, trips him up, and ties him up! Sanada puts Evil in Paradise! Fans cheer and Sanada encourages them to get louder. Fans do get louder, and Sanada is satisfied but Dick protests. Sanada runs and dropkicks Evil out of Paradise! Evil bails out, Sanada builds speed, but Evil ducks so Sanada tumbles. Sanada moonsaults, Evil dodges but Evil blocks the kick! Evil RAMS Sanada into railing and the timekeeper’s area! Abe-san suffers at Evil’s hands again!

Evil leaves the wreckage behind to go looking under the ring. Evil finds chairs and puts them down for a moment to go fetch Sanada. Evil grabs a chair, wraps it around Sanada’s head, then gets the other! HOME RUN!! Sanada clutches his neck but Evil goes around and tells the ref to shut up as he goes looking for more. Evil brings out a table! Evil and Dick set the table up, the ref sees that but Evil tells him to shut up already. Evil goes back to Sanada, drags him up and around, puts him in the ring, and has a cocky cover. TWO, and Evil is upset with the ref. Evil stands on Sanada’s head as fans rally up. Evil brings Sanada up but Sanada CHOPS back! And CHOPS again! And again!

Evil whips Sanada into bare buckles!? Dick must’ve undone the blue corner, as is the Bullet Club style! Evil drags Sanada up, throws him back out, and then RAMS him into the timekeeper’s area again! Can’t they just move the table to somewhere else?! Evil drags Sanada back up and in, but then Dick gets in and CHAIR SHOTS Sanada! No one saw that, but Evil wants the ref to count. Cover, TWO! Another cover, TWO! Another, TWO!! Evil is furious with the ref but the count is the count. Evil drags Sanada up, reels him in, fisherman but no buster as Sanada fights it off! Sanada resists the next attempt, and then he suplexes.

Evil fights that off, suplexes again but Sanada slips out to waistlock. Evil switches and shoves to then go the other way, but Sanada dropkicks the legs out! Again, they know each other so well! Fans rally up as Sanada goes after Evil. Dick distracts so Sanada DECKS him! Evil whips, Sanada reverses to hurdle, hurdle and dropkick! Then PLANCHA! Sanada goes back in and PLANCHAS Dick, too! Fans fire up and Sanada encourages them to get even louder. The fans get louder and louder until Sanada is satisfied, and he goes to fetch Evil. Sanada puts Evil in, covers, TWO! Sanada drags Evil up to fireman’s carry, but Evil rakes eyes to get free!

Evil whips Sanada but Sanada stops himself from hitting bare buckles. Sanada elbows Evil away, jumps up and over, ducks and dodges, but Evil distracts the ref as Dick trips Sanada up! Dick positions the table closer to the ring, Evil brings Sanada over, and the ref reprimands but Evil drags Sanada up. Fans rally up, Evil brings Sanada up, but Sanada fights off the urenage! Sanada fireman’s carries, Evil holds ropes and slips off! Evil swings but Sanada forearms! Sanada springboards but Evil dodges! The ref is used as a shield, Evil kicks low and uses the ref to prop Sanada up!

Sanada slips off to deny Magic Killer, and tries to suplex Evil to do the same, only for Evil to cradle counter! Sanada drags Evil back up, to hit MAGIC SCREW! Both men are down but fans fire up again! Sanada rises, drags Evil back up and chicken wings, TIGER SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO! Sanada gets Evil in the dragon sleeper but Evil fights back! Evil pulls on Sanada’s ear, but Sanada gives him a SKULL SWING! To SKULL- No, Evil rolls back and reels Sanada in, but Sanada slips out to another dragon sleeper! Evil spins around to RAM Sanada into the bare buckles! Both men are down again and fans rally back up. Evil drags himself over to ropes and then gets up.

Evil drags Sanada up and scoops him for a backbreaker! Sanada writhes and goes to ropes but Evil mocks the applause from fans. Evil drags Sanada up, hoists him to the top rope, then climbs up to join him. Evil brings Sanada up for the SUPERPLEX! Evil gets the legs, steps through, SHARPSHOOTER! Sanada endures as Evil sits deep, fans rally up, and Sanada powers up! Sanada crawls for ropes but Evil sits deeper! And Dick even pulls the ropes back to keep them from Sanada! Sanada still endures, powers up again, and gets the ropebreak! The ref counts, Evil lets go at 4! Evil is annoyed, but he mocks the fans clapping “SA-NA-DA!” before he drags Sanada up.

Evil fireman’s carries, for DARKNESS FALLS! Cover, TWO!?!? Sanada narrowly avoids losing and Evil is frustrated! Evil slashes the throat and drags Sanada back up. Evil spins Sanada around, but Sanada fights the STO off! Sanada staggers, but he baits Evil into the bare buckles! BIG BACK SUPLEX! Both men are down, fans fire up and Sanada rises first. Sanada drags Evil up to a fireman’s carry, TKO! Cover, TWO! Sanada brings Evil back up, scoops him for a backbreaker, then he goes to the top rope. MOONSAULT, but Sanada has to bail out as Evil moves! Sanada hobbles, Evil runs in but into a fireman’s carry! Sanada throws Evil into the dragon sleeper!

Evil spins out, blocks a kick and rakes eyes! Evil throws the foot into the ref! The ref goes down this time, and Dick gets in with a chair! Dick JAMS Sanada low, then rains down fists! Dick stomps Sanada, Evil gets up, and they double whip Sanada to the corner. Dick runs in to corner clothesline! Evil runs in to clothesline, then he and Dick hit MAGIC KILLER on Sanada! Evil drags Sanada over to the drop zone, Dick climbs up, but Sanada kicks Evil into the ropes! Dick lands on his namesake then falls out of the ring! The ref recovers while Evil shouts to Dick. Dick’s down and Sanada cradles Evil! TWO, and Evil runs into an elbow. Sanada Quebrada to the SKULL END!

Evil is caught, starts to fade, but he pulls at hair. Sanada squeezes tighter, Evil keeps going after hair and ears and whatever he can find, but Sanada isn’t letting go! Evil fades more, the ref checks on him, but Sanada lets go to put Evil in a drop zone. Sanada goes up, ROUNDING BODY PRESS! And then ANOTHER, onto KNEES!! Evil saves himself at the last second! Evil goes to a corner while Sanada writhes and clutches his legs. Sanada manages to stand, and he runs in at Evil, but into a boot! Sanada staggers, runs back in but into more boots. Evil runs in, Sanada spins him, SHIRANUI, to SKULL END! But Evil slips out, grabs the ref, and they all back up, and Dick uses the CHOKER!!

Evil keeps the ref from seeing, but Sanada powers out of the choker! Sanada dodges Evil, Evil stops from hitting Dick, but Sanada dropkicks Evil into Dick! Dick falls through the table!! Evil is in shock after what happened to Dick, and Sanada waistlocks to O’Conner Roll, BRIDGING! TWO!! Evil survives, Sanada swings but into a shove! Evil HALF ‘N’ HALF, then LARIATS! Cover, TWO!! Sanada survives and fans are thunderous again! Evil slashes the throat and drags Sanada up. Sanada again avoids the STO to dragon sleeper, but Evil brings the ref in! Sanada blocks the low blow, Evil rakes eyes, but Evil swings into EVERYTHING IS EVIL!!

Sanada steals Evil’s move but he isn’t done! Fans are fired up as Sanada whips Evil to pop him up for the TKO! Sanada goes to the corner, ROUNDING BODY PRESS!! Cover, Sanada wins!!

Winner: SANADA, by pinfall

The grudge match is over, and the Cold Skull stands tall! Will Sanada move on from his past to have a bright future?

 

IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship: Taiji Ishimori VS Hiromu Takahashi!

The Bone Soldier Reborn already lost to the Timebomb in Best of the Super Juniors 27, so he’ll do everything in his power to keep it from happening again. But Hiromu already beat El Phantasmo, will he sweep at WrestleKingdom to prove who is truly THE best Junior Heavyweight today?

The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and this rivalry continues with a new chapter!

The fans rally up as Ishimori and Hiromu slowly circle. They approach, tie up, and Ishimori puts Hiromu on the ropes. Red Shoes calls for the break, Ishimori fakes the chop to kick low. Ishimori whips, Hiromu reverses, Ishimori handsprings but Hiromu dodges. Ishimori dodges Hiromu’s swing and then holds ropes to bait Hiromu in and dump him out. Ishimori keeps moving, Hiromu gets back in and blows past, but Ishimori gets around to waistlock. Hiromu switches, Ishimori switches, repeat, but Ishimori wrenches the arm to throw Hiromu back out. Fans cheer as Ishimori goes to the corner and goes up, but Hiromu intercepts with a waistlock!

Ishimori fights him off but Hiromu SUPERKICKS back! Hiromu goes in, runs, and sunset flips! Ishimori holds on, back flips through, but runs into an APRON POWERBOMB! Hiromu already has ELP counter him yesterday, he wasn’t going to let it happen today! Fans cheer but Ishimori writhes and Hiromu takes his time stalking him to the ramp. Hiromu mocks Ishimori’s pain and asks if he’s okay. Hiromu drags Ishimori up and scoops him for a slam! Fans cheer as Hiromu goes up the ramp to get some space. Hiromu gets a LOT of space, and they clap along as he goes to the very top of the ramp. Hiromu builds speed all the way down, to JOHN WOO, INTO A SLAM!!

Ishimori was ready for Hiromu running down, perhaps Hiromu could’ve stopped a bit closer… Ishimori goes to the ring and unties the blue corner pad while the ring count climbs. Hiromu gets up and crawls at 13, makes it to the ring at 15, but Ishimori MOONSAULTS out onto him! Ishimori drags Hiromu up and puts him in. Ishimori looms over Hiromu, stomps him down, then drags him back up. Ishimori whips Hiromu into the bare corner! Red Shoes reprimands but the damage is done. Fans rally while Hiromu writhes but Ishimori drags him back up. Ishimori wrenches, hammerlocks, and RAMS Hiromu into the bar buckles! Hiromu falls over again and clutches the shoulder!

Ishimori grins as he hears the fans rallying again. Ishimori kicks at Hiromu, Hiromu gets up and CHOPS! But that was his bad arm! Ishimori goes after the fingers, Hiromu throws forearms! Ishimori elbows the bad arm, hammerlocks the good arm, then reaches across to YANK the bad arm! Hiromu writhes but Ishimori drags him up to gut wrench. Hiromu fights out and shoves Ishimori at the bare corner! Ishimori stops himself, elbows back and whips Hiromu away. Ishimori blocks boots, puts Hiromu in the ropes and enziguris! But Hiromu gets out of the ropes to intercept Ishimori with a RANA! Both men are down and fans fire up!

Hiromu gets up, still clutching the bad arm. Ishimori runs in, but into BOOTS! Hiromu hits a DRAPING HEADSCISSOR HOLD! Hiromu lets go at 4, drags Ishimori out in a wheelbarrow, for a FACEBUSTER to the floor! Hiromu grins as he goes to the apron and takes aim. Ishimori gets up, for Hiromu to SHOTGUN dropkick him into railing! Hiromu puts Ishimori in, drags him up and suplexes for the FALCON ARROW! Cover, TWO! Fans fire up while Hiromu catches his breath and gets the bad arm moving. Hiromu drags Ishimori up, fireman’s carries, but Ishimori slips out before the Death Valley.

Ishimori blocks boots, spins Hiromu and enziguris, to run and hit the SLIDING GERMAN! Ishimori gets to the corner, springboards up and 450’s THE ARM!! And then rolls Hiromu to the YES LOCK! Hiromu endures, fans fire up, but Ishimori cranks back on the crossface! Hiromu still reaches and gets a leg for the ropebreak! Ishimori lets go, but he drags Hiromu back up. Ishimori gut wrenches but Hiromu turns that around, only for Ishimori to turn it back. But Hiromu headscissors out and pops Ishimori up, only for Ishimori to RANA! Hiromu goes to a corner, Ishimori runs in, bu Hiromu throws him OVERHEAD into the buckles! Fans fire up as both men are down!

Hiromu rises, drags Ishimori up, but Ishimori blocks the fireman’s carry. Hiromu still gets him up, Ishimori fights out, ducks the strikes, but Hiromu wheelbarrows to the COMPLETE SHOT! Hiromu gets up, drags Ishimori up and fireman’s carries again, for a CORNER DEATH VALLEY! Hiromu keeps Ishimori in the fireman’s carry for the RUNNING DEATH VALLEY! Fans fire up with Hiromu as he drags Ishimori back up. Hiromu fireman’s carries again, spins, but Ishimori slips free! Ishimori blocks the kick, Hiromu blocks the knee, Hiromu SUPERKICKS! Hiromu runs into a BOOT! Ishimori whips but Hiromu reverses. Ishimori handsprings into a GERMAN!

Hiromu runs, but Ishimori dodges and runs to DESTROYER!! Hiromu sits up in a daze and slowly falls over! Fans are thunderous as both men are down again, but stirring. Ishimori crawls over to Hiromu and Hiromu crawls over to him. Ishimori sits Hiromu up to throw a forearm, but Hiromu forearms back. Ishimori forearms again, Hiromu laughs and he forearms Ishimori back. Ishimori grins, throws another forearm, and the two start to rise. Hiromu throws another forearm, Ishimori gives it back. Hiromu forearms, Ishimori forearms, repeat! Ishimori gets the edge, but Hiromu DECKS him with one!

Hiromu grins as he brings Ishimori back up. Ishimori fires off fast hands, ROCKS Hiromu, then ROCKS him again! And again! And again! Hiromu keeps trying but Ishimori keeps hitting! Hiromu wobbles into another forearm, and then another! Ishimori keeps hitting, and DECKS Hiromu! Hiromu still gets up!? Ishimori ROCKS him again and Hiromu leans against ropes! Fans rally for Hiromu and he pushes himself back up. Ishimori throws more forearms, but Hiromu isn’t backing down this time! Ishimori just keeps throwing forearms, Hiromu wobbles and sways and Ishimori DECKS him again! Hiromu springs up but Ishimori just keeps hitting him back down!

Ishimori brings Hiromu up so he can keep hitting him! Ishimori sits Hiromu up to DECK him! Fans continue to rally as Ishimori looks to a corner. Ishimori drags Hiromu up, and POSTS him! Ishimori drags Hiromu back, hammerlocks and scoops, for a SHOULDER BUSTER! Ishimori goes to the corner to watch Hiromu writhe and clutch his shoulder. Hiromu slowly gets back up, and Ishimori runs in, tilt-o-whirl takedown! YES LOCK!! Hiromu endures, crawls around, and fans rally up behind him! Hiromu reaches, Ishimori rolls him away, and has the Yes Lock back on! Ishimori cranks back on the hold, Hiromu moves around, and Hiromu reaches out!

Ishimori gets the other arm and pulls back, but Hiromu uses his foot for the ropebreak! Ishimori lets go in frustration but fans rally up for Hiromu. Ishimori drags Hiromu back up, gut wrenches, but Hiromu fights out. Ishimori throws elbows, slides back and pump handles Hiromu to the gut wrench! CIPHER UTAKI! Cover, TWO!! Hiromu survives and Ishimori is furious! Ishimori goes to ropes, aims and says BANG, before he brings Hiromu up. Hiromu arm-drags out of the half hatch but Ishimori JUMPING KNEES! Ishimori runs in, tilt-o-whirls, but Hiromu blocks! Hiromu suplexes for VICTORIA! Cover, TWO!! Ishimori survives but Hiromu is too tired to be upset.

Hiromu gets up and fans rally behind him as he shouts at Ishimori. Hiromu drags Ishimori up, runs, and LARIATS! Then a fireman’s carry, to CORNER DEATH VALLEY! Into the bare buckles!! Hiromu fires up more and he drags Ishimori up to a fireman’s carry, TIMEBOMB!! Cover, TWO!?! Ishimori survives but Hiromu won’t stop there! Hiromu drags Ishimori up, dragon sleepers and suplexes, then tucks him in, but Ishimori fights out to snapmare Hiromu into his own dragon sleeper! Ishimori lifts, Hiromu arm-drags free and then rolls to get the fireman’s carry back! Hiromu throws Ishimori into the dragon sleeper but Ishimori fights off the lift!

Hiromu still tries but Ishimori wrenches in mid-air, to the BONE LOCK!!! Hiromu endures as Ishimori cranks on the hold, and fans fire up as Hiromu moves around. Hiromu reaches but Ishimori drags him away again! Ishimori brings Hiromu, BLOODY- NO! Hiromu slips out, suplexes, VICTORIA!! Ishimori flounders around, Hiromu fires himself up again, and fans fire up with him! Hiromu drags Ishimori up into the dragon sleeper, then the suplex, TIMEBOMB MK. II!! Cover, HIROMU WINS!!

Winner: Hiromu Takahashi, by pinfall (NEW IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion)

The Best of the Super Juniors winner, who beat the Super J-Cup winner, has now beaten the Junior Heavyweight Champion! He stands up, belt on his shoulder and trophy in hand! Is Hiromu truly the best Junior Heavyweight in the world?!

 

IWGP Heavyweight & Intercontinental Double Championship: Kota Ibushi VS Jay White w/ Gedo!

The Golden Star has finally reached the top of the mountain! But the Switchblade promises to be there to knock him back down every single time. White already stole the G1 Climax’s Right to Challenge Contract, will he still Ibushi’s claim to being the wrestling god of NJPW? Or is destiny, true destiny, undeniable?

The introductions are made, Gedo hands Red Shoes the Right to Challenge contract on behalf of White, and Ibushi gives over both belts. All three are presented together, and this historic main event begins!

White and Gedo Low Sweet, fans rally up, and the bell rings. White and Ibushi stare down as the rallying continues, but then White bails out. White mocks the clapping but then goes back to the ring, only to slip right back out. Gedo applauds but Ibushi gets impatient. White has Ibushi stay back as he has the fans clap again. White slips in, approaches Ibushi and gets face to face with him. White says this happens on his schedule, and the two circle. But Gedo gets on the apron, only for White to tell him to stay down. Gedo backs away, White and Ibushi tie up, and are in a deadlock. Ibushi powers White back, White turns things around to put Ibushi on the ropes.

Red Shoes calls for the break, White backs off but Gedo grabs at Ibushi’s feet! White CLUBS Ibushi from behind! White stomps Ibushi down while defending Gedo’s innocence. White brings Ibushi up, headlocks and hits the takeover, but Ibushi keeps his shoulders up. White traps an arm, Ibushi hits White with his free arm, but White shifts position. They get up, White hits another takeover, and he grinds Ibushi down again. White again traps an arm, but Ibushi uses his legs to move around. They get up again, Ibushi tries to power out but White pulls on Ibushi’s ears! White reels Ibushi back into the headlock takeover!

White grinds Ibushi down, but Ibushi fights his way up again. Ibushi powers out of the headlock this time but White runs him over, only for Ibushi to kip up! White ducks the roundhouse and scrambles out of the ring! Ibushi pursues, Gedo keeps his distance, but White slips back into the ring. Ibushi keeps his cool, goes in but White stomps him down! White clubs, whips but Ibushi FLYING KICKS! Fans fire up with Ibushi as White bails out. Ibushi pursues but Gedo goes after him! Ibushi elbows Gedo away, ROCKS and CLUBS White and Red Shoes reprimands Gedo. Ibushi puts White in, White rolls all the way to the other side and bails out again.

Ibushi follows, brings White up and puts him back in. White gets Ibushi in the ropes with a DRAPING DDT! White drags Ibushi up and throws him back out, then goes out after him. White brings Ibushi up for a BIG APRON BACK SUPLEX! Ibushi is all folded up as he flops over! White double guns then goes back into the ring while Red Shoes checks on Ibushi. Ibushi is okay to continue, White goes back out after him, and White RAMS Ibushi into the apron! Then again! And again! White shows no mercy as he RAMS Ibushi a fourth time! White leaves Ibushi behind and lets the ring count start. Ibushi stirs at 3, gets up at 7, and in at 10 of 20.

White stomps Ibushi at the ropes, digs his boots into Ibushi’s neck, then lets off at Red Shoes’ count. Ibushi hits back but it’s not enough, and White rakes Ibushi’s eyes! White drags Ibushi up, puts him in a corner and rams his shoulder in! And again! And again! And again! White then gives Ibushi a GUT BUSTER! Cover, TWO! Ibushi also grabs the ropes for good measure, but White dags him away. White wraps Ibushi up in a rear bearhug, then he drives knees into Ibushi’s back. White wraps on the bearhug again but fans rally. Ibushi fights up but White spins him for a facelock! Ibushi throws body shots but White CLUBS him, then runs, and fakes out the dropkick!

White gets the legs and STOMPS Ibushi in the stomach! White mocks the applauds then gives stomps to Ibushi over and over at the ropes. White gets the legs and ROPE GUILLOTINES Ibushi! White mocks the Tranquilo since Naito isn’t here, and he covers. Red Shoes refuses because of the circumstances so White goes back to the bearhug. Gedo shouts at Ibushi to give up but Ibushi growls back at Gedo. Ibushi grits his teeth, fights up but White CLUBS him! White suplexes but Ibushi blocks! So White DDT’s instead! White mockingly cheers the fans on to clap for Ibushi. White slaps Ibushi around, drops knees, but Ibushi glares up at White.

White rakes Ibushi’s eyes and puts him in the corner! Red Shoes reprimands and counts, White lets off but he RAMS his shoulder in. Red Shoes reprimands more, White drags Ibushi up, and White RAMS in again! White digs his shoulder in, Red Shoes pulls White back and they argue about who touches who. White storms off, into Ibushi’s ROUNDHOUSE! Fans cheer as Ibushi turns things around, but White is up first. White brings Ibushi up, knees low but Ibushi sobats! Ibushi fires himself up and White staggers over into another ROUNDHOUSE! STANDING MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO! Ibushi keeps focus as fans rally up.

Ibushi drags White, waistlocks, but White resists the lift, White trips Ibushi, Ibushi kicks White away and White ends up outside the ring! Ibushi hurries out and throws hands but White RAMS him into the apron again! And into the railing! Commentary braces themselves as White brings Ibushi up again. White puts Ibushi in the ring, and sees him go to a corner. White runs in corner to corner but Ibushi goes up and over and then hits the SPINNING POWERSLAM! Ibushi somersaults to a corner but White trips him up! Ibushi is stuck in the ropes as White CLUBS away on his back! Red Shoes counts, White lets off to go outside. White has a leg, for a DRAPING DRAGON SCREW!

Ibushi flops down, White gets in, and White goes to the opposite corner. Ibushi drags himself up, White runs in to UPPERCUT! Then BLADE BUSTER! Cover, TWO! White is annoyed, he drags Ibushi around and stomps the leg. White throws forearms but Ibushi sits up to egg White on. White ROCKS Ibushi, brings him up, but Ibushi powers out of the urenage to back White into buckles! Ibushi throws elbows, White kicks the legs, but White runs into the RANA! White flops out of the ring and fans rally up behind Ibushi. Ibushi runs to the corner, goes up, but White gets in the ring. Ibushi adjusts but White trips him up! Ibushi crashes down to the floor and Gedo cheers.

White catches his breath and rests while Red Shoes checks on Ibushi. Ibushi is okay so the ring count starts. Ibushi sits up at 3, drags himself over at 7, but White has Ibushi as he gets in. White suplexes Ibushi to hang him out to dry, and Ibushi flops down and hits the mat. White drags Ibushi back up, and Half Hatch suplexes Ibushi into buckles! Cover, TWO! Gedo protests the count but Red Shoes says he was being fair. White drags Ibushi up, reels him in, but Ibushi again fights off the urenage. White throws knees low, and Gedo says White needs to end Ibushi! White wants the Kiwi but Ibushi fights out with body shots! Ibushi gut wrenches but White resists!

Ibushi tries to fight through but White throws more body shots to then scoop. But Ibushi slips out, SNAP HALF ‘N’ HALF! Fans fire up while both men are down! Ibushi feeds off the energy and gets up first. White follows in a daze, and Ibushi ROCKS him with a forearm! White wobbles, Gedo shouts for him to get up, and White forearms back! Ibushi ROCKS White, but White forearms again! Fans rally up as the two pick up speed, but White knees low. Ibushi swings into White’s strike fest, only to give a strike fest! White doubles over from the sobat, but he ducks the Penalty Kick! Ibushi blocks the roll up to sit down! TWO, White gets the cover, TWO!

Ibushi has White for the BASTARD DRIVER!! But Ibushi can’t hold the cover! Fans are still thunderous as both men are down again. Ibushi and White stir but Ibushi is up first. White rolls slowly to the corner, but Ibushi calls upon the powers of Strong Style! White dodges Bomaye! Ibushi fights off the waistlock but White gets a SNAP SAIDO! White crawls over, drags Ibushi back up, reels him in, URENAGE! Cover, TWO! Ibushi survives but Gedo shouts for White to keep going. White wants the Kiwi again, fisherman, KIWI KRUSHER! Cover, TWO!! White grows annoyed but he slashes the throat and drags Ibushi up! Ibushi rolls through the Bladerunner to dead lift BACK SUPLEX!

Fans fire up, Ibushi powers up, BOMAYE!! Cover, TWO!?! White survives and Ibushi can’t believe it! Fans rally up as Ibushi drags White back up. Ibushi reels White in, lifts, but White fights out and knees low. White goes to ropes, gets Ibushi to a backslide, but he uses the TOP rope for leverage! Red Shoes sees that and stops counting! Gedo and White are pissed but that’s what they get for cheating! Ibushi glares at White and BUZZSAWS! Ibushi drags White up and Gedo panics! Ibushi has the wrists but White covers his head to avoid the knee. Ibushi lets go, White looks up, BUZZSAW AGAIN!

Fans fire up as Ibushi goes to the corner, goes up top, but Gedo gets on the apron! Red Shoes reprimands, Ibushi glares at Gedo, but White gets a leg! White clubs Ibushi down, climbs up behind him and goes to bump Ibushi off the post. Ibushi blocks but White clubs away! White climbs up more, sleeper holds, and Gedo is fired up for this! Ibushi still resists, White still pulls back, but Ibushi elbows until White lets go! White stumbles down, but Gedo anchors Ibushi’s foot! Ibushi kicks Gedo away but White CLUBS Ibushi again! White drags Ibushi off the top, but Ibushi elbows out! White CHOP BLOCKS the leg! And GROUND DRAGON SCREWS! And again!

White steps through, for the TTO!! Or will it be ITO for Ibushi Taps Out? Ibushi endures, drags himself and White towards ropes, and he gets the ropebreak! White holds on until Red Shoes counts 4. Ibushi clutches his leg, but Gedo goes looking under the ring for things. White drags Ibushi up and brings him around to give toying kicks. Ibushi just stares at White. White keeps kicking but Ibushi gets up with that ice cold stare. White throws a forearm but Ibushi doesn’t budge. White keeps throwing forearms but Ibushi just stares. Ibushi STRAIGHT SHOTS! Then KICKS! And CLUBS! This is Killer Ibushi now! Gedo panics as Ibushi goes after White with kicks and stomps in the corner!

Ibushi lets off and dares White to do something! White gets up, and Ibushi dares him to man up! White walks over to throw a forearm but Ibushi immediately DECKS him! Ibushi again eggs White on, and White comes back with another forearm. Ibushi DECKS White again! White flounders, comes back, throws another forearm, but Ibushi DECKS White again! White flops out of the ring, sputters, and Ibushi dares White to get back in. Fans rally behind Ibushi, Gedo helps White stand, and White drags himself into the ring. Ibushi demands White bring the fight, and White returns, but he flops back down.

White dares Ibushi to cover him already but Ibushi isn’t falling for any of these tricks. Ibushi stands over White, and SLAPS away on him! White shields himself but Ibushi just rains down furious fists! Red Shoes goes to pull Ibushi away but Ibushi shoves him! White LOW BLOWS Ibushi!! Ibushi fell for a trick after all! White makes sure he still has his teeth, then he pushes Ibushi out of the ring. White drags Ibushi up, and RAMS him into railing! And then the apron! And back to railing! And the apron! Railing! Apron! Repeat! White drags Ibushi up and POSTS him! White drags Ibushi to the ramp and throws forearms on him!

Red Shoes tells White to get this in the ring but White rains down forearm after forearm on Ibushi! White goes back to the ring and Red Shoes checks on Ibushi. Ibushi is okay so fans rally up. White doesn’t want Red Shoes to count yet and now White dares Ibushi to bring the fight. Ibushi gets up, hobbles his way back to the ring, and gets inside. White dares Ibushi to hit him, but then gets Ibushi in a COMPLETE SHOT! And a DEAD LIFT GERMAN! And another DEAD LIFT GERMAN! White pushes Ibushi to the apron, then drags Ibushi up. Ibushi holds ropes but White still dead lifts him! Ibushi elbows free, then fireman’s carries, but White fights to get back in the ring.

Ibushi ROUNDHOUSES White down! Fans fire up as both men are down again! Ibushi fires himself up as he rises, and he goes after White again. White hurries to get back to the apron, so Ibushi drags White up at the ropes! Ibushi waistlocks and dead lifts now, but White fights, only to get the SUPER GERMAN SUPLEX! Ibushi grins and brings White up as fans are thunderous! Ibushi has White for the LAST RIDE!! Cover, TWO!!! White barely survives and Gedo is relieved. Fans continue to rally up as Ibushi gets the wrists. Gedo freaks out again but White avoids Kami-Goye to SNAP SLEEPER SUPLEX! Both men are down again but fans rally back up.

White drags himself over to Ibushi and he drags Ibushi back into the sleeper. Ibushi resists but White knees him over and over to hit another SNAP SLEEPER SUPLEX! Gedo is fired up as White brings Ibushi up, for a FISHERMAN BACK SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!!! Ibushi survives but White drags him around! BLADE- NO! Ibushi backslides, White rolls through, KAMI-GOYE!! Cover, TWO!?!? White survives but Ibushi just fires up! Fans are thunderous again as Ibushi goes to the corner. Ibushi climbs up, PHOENIX SPLASH!! Cover, but Gedo drags Red Shoes out!! Red Shoes crashes hard and Ibushi realizes what happened.

Gedo slides in, Ibushi blocks his attack and wrenches his arm! Ibushi gives Gedo KAMI-GOYE!! Gedo is OUT COLD! Ibushi goes to Red Shoes and helps him into the ring. Ibushi goes back to White but White hits BLADERUNNER!!! Cover, TWO?!?!?! Ibushi barely survives now and White is in shock! Fans are electric but White drags Ibushi up. White has the wrists now, but Ibushi pushes him away. White drags Ibushi up but Ibushi fights out of the sleeper. Ibushi drags White back up in a waistlock, but White rolls to get the legs, ITO!! Ibushi endures, shouts, drags himself to ropes, White begs he tap as he puts more pressure on, but Ibushi keeps reaching!

White drags Ibushi away, Ibushi is fading, but the fans rally hard as ever! Ibushi gets a second wind, fights his way over, and gets the ROPEBREAK! White holds on until the count of 4, and Ibushi clutches his knee. White drags Ibushi back up, reels him back in, cross-arm but Ibushi fights back! Ibushi throws body shots, shoves White away, V-TRIG- NO! White blocks and fisherman BACK SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!?!? White keeps on Ibushi, cross-arm suplex, BLOODY SUNDAY!! White drags Ibushi back up, BLADERUN- NO! V-TRIGGER!! KENNYYY~!! Both men are down, fans are thunderous all over again, and Ibushi roars as he gets back up!

Ibushi brings White up by his wrists, White resists and kicks at Ibushi’s legs, but Ibushi keeps trying. White throws boot after boot but Ibushi eggs himon. Then Ibushi BOOTS, V-TRIGGERS, and looms over White. Ibushi says he’ll end it, and he gets White’s wrists again. KAMI- BLADE- NO! LARIAT!! Ibushi has White down again, brings him back up but from behind?! BLINDSIDE KAMI-GOYE!!! Knee pad down, BRUTAL KAMI-GOYE!!!! Cover, Ibushi wins!!!

Winner: Kota Ibushi, by pinfall (still IWGP Heavyweight & Intercontinental Champion)

The Golden Star’s ascension to divinity continues! Or is he already NJPW’s god of wrestling?! White desperately grabs at the title belts, but they’re not his to have. Red Shoes takes them from him and brings them to the true champion. White goes after Ibushi now but Ibushi dares him to try. Red Shoes has Young Lions bring White away, and then Red Shoes raises Ibushi’s hand in victory. Ibushi takes a moment to rest before he takes the Heavyweight and Intercontinental Championship belts back. Red Shoes even helps Ibushi put them on one at a time. But wait, Sanada is here! Sanada is in his nice suit, having had his rest after his match.

Sanada has the mic to say, “Champion, as the great hope of pro-wrestling, Sanada, will you accept the gift of my challenging you, Kota Ibushi?” Fans cheer that and Ibushi nods. They shake hands, and then Ibushi says, “I still remember that G1 match very well. I’ll admit, I barely pulled out that win. However, what I’m holding right now, the IWGP Intercontinental and IWGP Heavyweight titles, the greatest belt and the strongest belt, I’m holding them both!” Ibushi is up for fighting Sanada again and again, so he gladly accepts. They shake hands again, and fans cheer the acceptance of this “gift.” Ibushi isn’t sure when or where, but he’s up for it anytime!

And Ibushi ends by saying what he’s been saying: He won’t run away, lose, quit or betray the fans. And he has now become, A WRESTLING GOD!! When and where will see the epic rematch of the G1 Climax 30 Finals!?


My Thoughts:

What a great second night and finale to WrestleKingdom! Yano being the first Mr. KOPW 2021 is a natural move, he is highly entertaining and will make every defense of the trophy hilarious. The Junior Tag title match was great, but it definitely felt like Taguchi was taking it upon himself to get the win at the end there, which backfired as Kanemaru and Desperado are a more united and experienced duo. I can’t be sure who challenges for those titles next, but there are still a few possibilities with ELP back in Japan. Takagi VS Cobb was incredible, definitely WK worthy, and for just a second I thought Cobb was going to win to bring a title to The Empire. But Takagi wins and as I was saying during Summer Struggle, Takagi is finally getting to make his reign feel strong, as it should have in 2020 if not for COVID.

Hiromu had an incredible match with Ishimori, too, and naturally Hiromu wins. Hiromu sweeps the weekend, quite truly proving he’s the best Junior Heavyweight in NJPW, and is adding to his personal legacy within NJPW. There’s any number of contenders for Hiromu, and I think it’d be epic if he and Desperado had another program where it comes down to who can have both belts. Bushi needs something to do so he can join Hiromu in a new pursuit of the tag titles. Sanada VS Evil was a great grudge match, Dick had a hilarious oversell of being knocked down into the table, and of course Sanada wins because Evil needed to face comeuppance at some point.

Ibushi VS White was an EPIC, and that was a great way to give White his own comeuppance. There was a lot of great stuff, such as Killer Ibushi returning to just brutalize White. Ibushi winning is the right move, as I was saying just yesterday, and then what a great move to have Sanada come out and bridge things from this ending to another great title match. I was hoping for a G1 Climax 30 finals rematch for WrestleKingdom, but now we’ll get it for whatever next event is coming (New Beginning? The new Castle Attack?) That is going to be an epic, as well, and that could go either way as I see it. Though, Ibushi will likely win because his reign has only just begun.

As for White, backstage interview clips say he’s considering quitting, but that is probably just story. I need to see White VS Evil in a Bullet Club Civil War first, which itself can be a great story and match.

My Score: 9.6/10


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Coverage

Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Results & Report! (4/19/24)

Prepare for Backlash!

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Did you know that challenger in French is still “challenger?”

In a WrestleMania rematch, AJ Styles takes on LA Knight in a #1 contender’s match, to challenge WWE Champion Cody Rhodes at Backlash in France!

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Undisputed WWE Championship #1 Contender’s match: AJ Styles VS LA Knight; Styles wins and will challenge Cody Rhodes for the title at Backlash.
  • SmackDown/WWE Tag Team Championships #1 Contenders Fatal 4 Way: The Street Profits VS New Catch Republic VS The Authors of Pain VS Legado Del Fantasma; The Profits win and will challenge A-Town Down Under for the titles.
  • Carlito w/ Zelina Vega VS Santos Escobar w/ Elektra Lopez; Santos wins.
  • WWE Women’s Championship: Bayley VS Naomi; Bayley wins, by disqualification, and retains the title.

PLAY BY PLAY

Undisputed WWE Championship #1 Contender’s match: AJ Styles VS LA Knight!

After fighting their way through Triple Threats, the Phenomenal One and the Mega Star meet again, YEAH! It’s a WrestleMania Rematch, the winner moving on to Backlash, YEAH! Will AJ Styles avenge his loss at the biggest WrestleMania ever? Or will everyone from here to France know whose game it is?

The bell rings and the two step to each other. The fans in Pittsburgh “YEAH! YEAH! YEAH!” and Knight lets Styles know it. Styles snarls, they tie up, and they go around. Knight puts Styles in a corner, the ref counts, but Knight lets off slowly. Styles kicks low! The fans boo but Styles headlocks. Knight pulls hair, throws body shots, then headlocks in return. Styles pushes Knight to ropes, powers up and out, then hurdles, drops and DROP- NO, Knight avoids the dropkick to BOOT, and LARIAT! Knight then TOSSES Styles out of the ring, storms out after him, and brings him to commentary. Knight SMACKS Styles off the desk! And again! And again!

The fans chant “YEAH! YEAH! YEAH!” with every SMACK, then Knight tops it off with one last SMACK! Knight drags Styles up and into the ring, storms in, but Styles KICKS Knight in the ropes! Styles reels Knight in, but Knight back drops Styles up and out! Styles flounders on the floor, Knight runs to WRECK him with a dropkick! Styles hits desk again and Steel City is loving “L! A! KNIGHT, YEAH!” as SmackDown goes to break.

SmackDown returns and Styles soaks up the heat as he taunts Knight. Styles brings Knight up, but Knight fires haymakers! “YEAH! YEAH! YEAH!” Knight backs Styles down, whips, but Styles ducks ‘n dodges! Knight ducks ‘n’ dodges, then DOUBLE CROSSBODIES collide! Both men are down and the fans fire up. Both men slowly sit up, crawl around, and then stand. Styles fires a shot, but Knight gives it back! The haymakers go back and forth, “YEAH! BOO! YEAH!” Styles staggers but he still ROCKS Knight! Knight ROCKS Styles again and again, but Styles throat chops! Styles fires off the Phenomenal Blitz, but Knight ducks the lariat!

Knight JABS, JABS, JABS, and DECKS Styles! Knight stomps a mudhole in at the corner, “YEAH!” Knight then runs corner to corner to KNEE Styles down! The fans fire up, Knight puts Styles up, and Knight ROCKS Styles. Knight climbs, but Styles ROCKS him back! Knight staggers away, but returns to spring right up! SUPER DUPER PLEX! Cover, TWO!! Styles survives that crash but both men are down again. The fans rally as Knight rises, and he brings Styles around. Knight reels Styles in, suplexes, but Styles slips free! Styles goes to a corner, ELBOWS Knight away, then goes up to QUEBRADA DDT! Cover, TWO!

The fans fire up as Knight stays in this and Styles starts losing his cool. The fans rally for Knight but Styles looms over him. Styles brings Knight up and in, but Knight RAMS him into a corner! Knight then scoops Styles, but Styles slips free to roll up, TWO!! Knight escapes, swings, but Styles dodges to PELE! Knight ends up in a corner, Styles runs in, but Knight puts Styles on the apron! Styles ROCKS Knight, springboards, but Knight gets under! Styles comes back, into a scoop and POWERSLAM! Then JUMP ELBOW DROP! The fans fire up with with Knight as he storms around. Styles rises, Knight winds up, B F- NO, Styles bails out!

The fans boo but Knight storms over. Knight drags Styles up but Styles HOTSHOTS him! And pokes him in the eyes! Then ROCKS him! And springboards, to PHENOMENAL FOREARM!! Cover, Styles wins!

Winner: AJ Styles, by pinfall (NEW #1 Contender to the Undisputed WWE Championship)

Styles bent the rules, but a win is a win! He will get his shot at the American Nightmare in Lyon, France, will this year’s Backlash be phenomenal?

 

The Bloodline arrives backstage.

The car pulls up, Solo Sikoa steps out in a suit, and Paul Heyman is there to greet him. Nice threads, Solo. Tama Tonga walks over and Solo says meet the newest member of The Bloodline, Solo’s MFT. The Wise Man is stunned. But Solo cuts him off to ask if Kevin Owens is here. Heyman hesitates and Solo asks again, is Kevin here? If he is, he’s probably already in the locker room. Then take them to him. Heyman obeys and leads on. There have already been changes to the chain of command, is there about to be a change to the landscape of SmackDown, too?

 

Nick Aldis is in the ring.

In a familiar scene to Monday Night Raw, there is a podium with something under a satin sheet. The SmackDown General Manager welcomes to Pittsburgh the Chief Content Officer, Paul “Triple H” Levesque! The fans fire up as The Game makes his way to the ring! HHH joins Aldis in the ring, gets a mic, looks around at the crowd as he revels in the cheers, then says, “On the heels of the biggest, most epic, history making, record breaking, epic, unbelievable WrestleMania of all time, we are here tonight, sold out, 15 thousand strong, Pittsburgh, PA! So let me say, welcome to SmackDown!” The fans cheer that!

HHH wants to take a moment to say that he thinks Adam Pearce and Nick Aldis are both doing great jobs at leading their respective brands into the future. Thank you to both of them. And when we talk about the future, we have to talk about the history made coming into the future. So when history is made, HHH wants it to be represented here befitting of those that make it. So Aldis, if we could, let us bring the… champions out here. Aldis says without further ado, the NEW SmackDown Tag Team Champions, Austin Theory & Grayson Waller. The fans boo as A-Town Down Under make their way, blue belts in hand.

Theory & Waller join Aldis and HHH in the ring, mics already in hand, and they soak up the heat from Steel City. Waller says this is huge. Monday, we saw the second place champions get new belts. And now A-Town Down Under will be presented new titles! Theory says speaking of truth, didn’t Truth think HHH was a magician? Well, who knows what magic trick HHH has to make these guys look better than they already do, but hey, give it a try. HHH says congratulations on becoming tag team champions, so he will show them what they will wear going forward. From now on, they will be the WWE Tag Team Champions.

Reveal! In the style of the Attitude Era and Ruthless Aggression Era belts, the solid gold shines. HHH offers a handshake, but Waller leaves him hanging to shake Theory’s hand! Aldis makes it clear to them. They ever pop off and disrespect HHH like that, here’s a real magic trick: A-Clown Down Under will disappear, permanently! The fans like the sound of that! Aldis snatches the blue belts away since they won’t need them, and speaking of disappearing, there’s a chance one of the following four teams will make their title reign disappear. That #1 contenders match starts right now! The fans fire up, but which team defies the odds to get some golden tickets to France?

 

Backstage interview with Naomi.

Kayla Braxton is with The Glow and says last week, she beat Tiffany Stratton to get this title opportunity tonight. Will the friendship with Bayley get in the way of this match? Naomi says no, of course not. Bayley’s her sister, and she needed help against Damage CTRL, so Naomi was more than happy to help. But in no way will friendship get in the way of this opportunity. It has been over two YEARS since Naomi’s last WWE singles championship match, and there is nothing that will get in the way of making the most of this moment. Now last week, Tiffy Time felt the glow, so that same energy keeps going tonight.

Naomi is also looking forward to next week’s WWE Draft, where she will walk in the NEW WWE Women’s Champion. Naomi is ready, but will she be able to best Bayley in Bayley’s first title defense?

 

WWE Tag Team Championships #1 Contenders Fatal 4 Way: The Street Profits VS New Catch Republic VS The Authors of Pain VS Legado Del Fantasma!

SmackDown returns as Legado makes their entrance, followed by Akam & Rezar with the Final Testament. Waller & Theory are on commentary, Waller admitting he wants any team but AOP, and Theory saying these teams are fortunate to have real superstars leading their division. In this form of Fatal 4 Way, only two teams are active, so the Big Strong Boi, Tyler Bate, starts against Montez Ford. They circle, tie up, and Ford headlocks. Bate powers up to pry at the hold but Ford clamps on tighter. Bate powers up and out, drops, but Ford leaps over! The fans cheer, things keep moving, Bate feints high to drop low!

Bate shows knuckle lock, Ford obliges, but Bate wrenches, baits and double pump handles to FLIP Ford! Cover, TWO! Ford gets up to sweep and cover, TWO! Bate steps over, La Magistrol, TWO! Ford gets up, dropkicks cancel out, and both men kip up! The fans fire up and the two reset. But then Humberto Carrillo sneaks a tag, before he DECKS Bate with a sucker punch! Ford dodges Humberto but Angel Garza holds the ropes open! Ford tumbles out,  Garza tags in, and Humberto sits Ford up. Garza runs in to KNEE Ford down! The fans boo, Garza drags Ford to a cover, TWO! Garza back suplexes, Ford lands out!

Ford tags Dawkins and he dodges Garza to FLYING ELBOW! Garza tags out to Akam, but then the Bruiserweight, Pete Dunne, tags in off Dawkins! Rezar tags, Dunne runs up but Akam LARIATS him down! Rezar DECKS Dawkins, then the AOP start clearing the corners! But Ford goes up to leap, but into an URENAGE! The fans boo but the AOP roar and soak up the heat. Waller’s worst case scenario might end up reality, but SmackDown goes to break.

SmackDown returns and the fans rally as Ford endures a facelock. Ford fights up, pries at the hold, but Rezar shoves him to ELBOW him down! Rezar talks trash, Waller taunts the Steelers players sitting in the front row that they don’t really know what championships are, and then Rezar sucker punches Dawkins down! Rezar stands Ford up, Canadian Racks and bends him! Ford endures, the fans rally, but Rezar thrashes Ford around! Ford kicks and flails, he gets free, hot tag to Dunne! Bate sneaks a tag, Dunne GAMANGIRIS Akam and then NCR fire off on Rezar! The fans fire up, Humberto runs in, but Dunne dodges to SNAP GERMAN!

Bate & Dunne STOMP Humberto’s hands! Then BASEMENT DROPKICK! Garza runs up, but into the REBOUNDER GERMAN COMBO!! The fans fire up with NCR, but Rezar runs up! He grabs Dunne, but Bate says Bop up, BANG! Bate fireman’s carries Rezar?! But Rezar ELBOWS right free! Dunne GAMANGIRIS, Ford SUPERKICKS, and Dawkins ENZIGIRIS! Rezar wobbles, and everyone helps Bate gets Rezar up! BIG STRONG AIRPLANE SPINE! But then Legado CLOBBER Bate and Rezar! They BOOT Dunne, whip the Profits but the Profits reverse to TOSS Legado out! Ellering coaches Rezar while the Profits regroup.

Bate gets up, Dawkins ROCKS him! Dawkins brings Bate to the very top, but Dunne CLUBS Dawkins! NCR mug Dawkins but Ford joins in! They brawl, but AOP add on! Humberto finds Rezar to tag in, before the DOUBLE TOWER OF DOOM!! Bate’s the only one left up top, so Legado mug him! They double trophy lift Bate, to DOUBLE ROCKET LAUNCH him onto everyone!! Humberto then finds Bate, sunset flips and rewinds, Garza jumps, MISSILE DROPKICK DOOMSDAY! Cover, DUNNE BREAKS IT! “This is Awesome!” as all eight men are down around ringside, and Waller says this is gonna be easy pickings for A-Town Down Under now.

Dunne grabs Garza, Bate has Humberto, STEREO ANKLE LOCKS!! Grapevine for Garza! But Humberto BOOTS Bate onto Dunne! Legado is free, Ellering has AOP regroup, and SmackDown goes to break.

SmackDown returns again and Rezar CLUBS Dawkins down. Rezar soaks up heat, taunts the other teams, then CLUBS Dawkins again. Rezar brings Dawkins up again, but Dawkins fires off body shots! Rezar KNEES low, reels Dawkins in, talks more trash, and lifts Dawkins up, to POWERBOMB! But then Dunne runs up to ROCK Rezar! Akam gets in to scoop Dunne and SLAM him on Dawkins! Cover, TWO! Rezar looks to Ellering and he coaches AOP. Rezar HAMMERS Dawkins, Akam tags, and AOP get NCR up! The fans boo but NCR RANA free to send AOP into each other! Ford jumps in, as does Garza.

All the teams realize, they gotta do something about AOP. So they all mug AOP! The fans fire up as AOP tumble out, but now who strikes first? Dunne runs up but Garza SUPERKICKS him first! Bate waistlocks Garza and Ford winds up, but Garza ducks so the BACKHAND hits Bate! Garza SUPERKICKS Ford, but Dawkins DECKS Garza! Humberto springboards to FLYING CHUCK! Cover, TWO!! Theory says if A-Town Down Under were in this match, he’d knock everyone out and Waller could just sneak in to cover. Humberto and Dawkins rise and go to corners. Humberto runs up, but Dawkins POUNCES him away!

Dawkins gets Humberto up, Ford returns and tags in! Dawkins Electric Chair Lifts Humberto and Ford climbs! The stars are out for the BLOCKBUSTER DOOMSDAY! Cover, DUNNE BREAKS IT! Another save from the Bruiserweight and Ford is frustrated. Dunne drags Dawkins up to CHOP, but Dawkins ROCKS him! Dawkins whips Dunne out of the ring, but Dunne grabs the arm! And he pulls off the glove so he can SNAP fingers! The fans fire up, but Ford ENZIGIRIS Dunne down! Ford brings Humberto up, Humberto JAWBREAKERS! Bate tags in off Ford, BOOTS Garza, then runs up, but into a POP-UP! But Bate RANAS Humberto!!

Bate then DUMPS Garza out, goes to the apron, and Dunne lines up targets. Bate and Dunne climb, Ford runs in, NCR DOUBLE ARIHARA MOONSAULT while Ford FLIES over the corner post!! Down goes Legado and AOP!! The fans are losing their minds as Bate hurries to get Humberto up. Bate puts Humberto in, reels him in, underhooks, but Humberto fights it! Humberto back drops but Bate lands on his feet! Humberto cradles, TWO! Humberto LARIATS Bate, tag to Garza! Legado gets Bate up, feed to the POP-UP KICK!! #FTY! Humberto then DIVES to take out Dunne! Garza goes up the ropes to LIONSAULT!!

But Ford flies in FROM THE HEAVENS!! The fans are thunderous as everyone is down again! Bate flounders, Dawkins tags in! Dawkins whips Legado, Ford joins in, THE REVELATION!! Cover, PROFITS WIN!

Winners: The Street Profits, by pinfall (NEW #1 Contenders to the WWE Tag Team Championships)

Waller & Theory are relieved it isn’t AOP, but they still look a bit annoyed that it is Ford & Dawkins. The Profits are Triple Crown Tag Team Champions from Raw to SmackDown to NXT, but will they soon add the WWE Tag Team Championships to make it a grand slam?

 

Backstage interview with Bayley.

Byron Saxton is with The Role Model, and brings up the emotional moment from Monday Night Raw where Rhea Ripley had to relinquish her title. But let us focus on Bayley’s title, as she defends it for the first time against Naomi. Where is her head at ahead of the main event? Bayley says after seeing Rhea vacate the Women’s World Championship on Raw, Bayley appreciates her reign more. She is focused, and she has realized she’s THE Women’s Champion in WWE right now, something she does not take for granted. Because we all know that with the WWE Draft, things are bound to change.

And as excited as Bayley is to face her friend, Naomi, one thing that won’t change is her as THE WWE Women’s Champion. Bayley is just as confident at Naomi, so something’s gotta give! Will The Role Model #FeelTheGlow? Or will she still be shining with gold after tonight?

 

Paul Heyman talks with Solo Sikoa.

The Wise Man apologizes that they haven’t found Kevin Owens, but he has to be here somewhere. Just look at the time. They will find him, somewhere. Solo stops listening and heads to gorilla. Heyman follows after, but Solo gives him a look. Heyman says he isn’t trying to upset Solo. Please believe him. The last person on this planet Heyman wants to piss off is Solo. But respectfully, Solo is making decisions that are not his to make, yet. One day, these will all be Solo’s decisions. But not now, not here! These are decisions that can only be made by one man. Solo asks Heyman if he’s done talking. Heyman asks if MFT is coming with Solo.

Solo just gives a thumbs up, with that taped thumb. The music hits and Solo makes his entrance, Heyman still following all the way into the ring. What does the Enforcer have planned? We’ll find out, after the break.

SmackDown returns and Heyman has the mic to give his usual introduction. And he doesn’t know if there is a list of the most brilliant backstage maneuvering politicians int he history of the WWE, but if there were, Heyman would have to think that he personally is in the top… Well, permit Heyman, with Solo’s permission, to explain what’s going on right now within The Bloodline, “the premier act in the history of WWE.” The fans chant, “We Want Roman!” but Solo shrugs that off. Heyman assures us that as The Wise Man for… Heyman gets emotional, so Solo just snatches the mic! The fans boo but Solo paces.

Solo tries to talk but the fans boo. Solo says last week, he had to lose a brother! He had to! It was in order for him to find a new one! His MFT, Tama Tonga! And with that, a bloodied Kevin Owens is tossed out, by the Good Bad Guy! Tama shoves Kevin down the ramp, stalks behind him, and referees rush out to stop him from doing anything further! Kevin can’t even sit up, but Tama steps over him to go to the ring. The fans boo as Tama joins Solo in the ring while the refs help Kevin to his feet and to the back. Tama raises his finger to the sky, because he acknowledges Solo! Heyman has no choice but to go along, but wait! Kevin is heading back down the ramp!?

The fans fire up as Kevin shows his grit and defiance! He drags Tama out to fire off hands!! The fans cheer but then Solo whips Kevin into steel steps! Solo drags Kevin back up, puts him in the ring, but now security rushes in! Tama storms in after Kevin but Kevin TACKLES Tama! The security gets Kevin away from Tama, but Solo SAMOAN SPIKES Kevin down!! The fans boo but then Tama SPLASHES Kevin! Tama rains down fists on that bloody wound, then he DECKS guard after guard! Producers try but Tama is a madman! Tama shoves everyone away so he can slip out of the ring, to grab a chair!!

The fans boo as Tama storms back in, but now Aldis steps up! Aldis warns The Bloodline here, and Solo has Tama stand down. Solo takes the chair from Tama to show they’re done here. The fans chant “YOU SUCK! YOU SUCK!” but the damage is done. Solo & Tama are a dangerous duo, will nothing and no one stop them from taking over SmackDown?

 

Heyman goes to the parking lot.

He’s in shock, but Aldis finds him and pulls him along. Was Heyman aware of this? Aldis shows Heyman the aftermath of one car T-boning another! And in case Heyman can’t guess, the struck car was Kevin’s. The attacking car was Tama’s! Heyman says this wasn’t authorized! No, Heyman, Aldis is speaking now. He gets this is a conflict within The Bloodline, but on his show, things are settle din the ring. Next week is the Draft, a lot of eyeballs on it, and a lot top brass are gonna be here. So Aldis will not tolerate this behavior. So make sure The Bloodline understands. Because, Heyman, if you don’t, the repercussions will be equally savage.

Aldis brings Heyman in close to tell him losing isn’t the only thing that has consequences. Will the Wise Man be able to rein in such an unruly force as Solo and Tama?

 

Carlito w/ Zelina Vega VS Santos Escobar w/ Elektra Lopez!

The LWO still doesn’t believe Legado’s claims that they had nothing to do with Dragon Lee going down before WrestleMania, so they’re going to get to the bottom of this one themselves! Will Caribbean Cool make the Emperor of Lucha confess his crimes? Or will Santos prove he was right all along?

The bell rings and the two talk trash. Then they start throwing hands! Carlito backs Santos down but Santos gets around to whisper something in Carlito’s ear. Carlito ELBOWS Santos away, runs up and hits a THESZ PRESS! Carlito then bumps Santos off buckles, fires hands, then has him in another corner. Carlito whips corner to corner, runs up, but Santos BOOTS him! Santos runs up, but into a SPINEBUSTER! Cover, TWO! Vega coaches Carlito to stay on Santos and he brings Santos up. Carlito ROCKS Santos, whips, but Santos KICKS him! Santos runs, but into a DROPKICK! Carlito kips up and the fans fire up!

Santos is on the outside, the ref won’t let Carlito go after him, but then Carlito WRECKS Santos with a dropkick! Carlito loads up to PLANCHA! Direct hit on Santos and Carlito hoists Vega up to celebrate! The fans cheer the LWO on as SmackDown goes to break.

SmackDown returns and Santos whips Carlito hard into buckles. Carlito falls over, Santos soaks up the heat, then Santos HEADBUTTS Carlito to a corner. Santos then CHOPS, gets space and runs in, to DOUBLE KNEE! Carlito slumps in the corner but Santos puts him up top! Santos GAMANGIRIS then climbs up! SUPER STEINER! Carlito flounders, Santos pushes him to a cover, TWO! Vega is relieved but Santos huffs and puffs. Santos rains down fists on Carlito, then clamps on a top wristlock. Carlito endures and Vega coaches him while the fans rally. Carlito rises, throws body shots, then LARIATS!

The fans rally as Carlito starts to rally with more clotheslines, and an ELBOW! Carlito kicks, runs, and KNEE LIFTS! Santos wobbles, Carlito LARIATS again! Cover, TWO! Santos is tougher than that but Carlito says he’s going up! Carlito climbs, but then Lopez gets on the apron! Vega storms right over to YANK her down! The fans fire up as Vega goes up, and RANAS, only for Lopez to block! Lopez SWINGS Vega into barriers! Carlito ROCKS Santos, steps in, but the ref is reprimanding Lopez so he misses Santos KICK ropes to jam Carlito low! Santos reels Carlito in to POST him, then brings him back for the fireman’s carry! PHANTOM DRIVER!! Cover, Santos wins!

Winner: Santos Escobar, by pinfall

La Madrina helps The Emperor steal this victory, them taking down the Caribbean Cool and La Muneca! Whether or not Legado beat down Dragon Lee, will nothing stop them from conquering SmackDown?

 

VIP Skybox interview with Damage CTRL!

Kayla is with Iyo Sky, Dakota Kai, Kairi Sane & Asuka as they sit way up in the back. What made the former WWE Women’s Champion and crew want a special view of this main event? Dakota takes offense for Iyo with the use of “former” there. Is Kayla trying to disrespect them? Iyo will take that title back when they’re good and ready. But for now, they’re here to watch two people they can’t stand tear each other apart! Does Dakota need to remind everyone here that DMG CTRL is still the most dominant force in the WWE!? The fans boo but Dakota says the Kabuki Warriors are STILL the WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions, and that will not change-

WAID! Jade Cargill is here! She makes her entrance from the other skybox, with Bianca Belair alongside her! The strongEST duo argues with DMG CTRL, their own title intentions clear. But for now, it’s time for the main event! Who shines with gold here in the Steel City? We find out, after the break!

 

Cody Rhodes speaks.

The American Nightmare is in the UK as part of Raw’s tour, but he still took time to say, “What is the task? Run up the score, leave no doubt, right? Formerly, the task was ‘win the big belt, in the big place.’ We’ve done that. Now, it’s a whole new frontier for us, undiscovered country.” There’s an old expression: the title can make the man, or the man makes the title. Which will it be for Cody? He’s in London tonight, the O2, 16 THOUSAND, then it’s on to Belfast, Ireland. Cody is keeping his promise to bring this title all around the world. Back home, AJ Styles has emerged the #1 contender to this championship.

So then, it will be two Georgia boys duking it out in Lyon, France. The first time ever, at that. Styles has an unprecedented reputation in pro-wrestling. The modern day Excellence of Execution, if you will. Styles rarely misses. But the same goes for Cody. So Backlash in France, Cody looks forward to it. The contract signing is next week, even as the WWE Draft is going on! Will things be explosive when American Nightmare and Phenomenal One meet face to face?

 

WWE Women’s Championship: Bayley VS Naomi!

SmackDown returns and Bayley makes her entrance. The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and either we shine or we glow!

The bell rings, the fans rally, and the two circle. The two tie up, go around, and Bayley headlocks. Naomi powers up but Bayley wrenches to wristlock. Naomi slips through, rolls Bayley up, ONE!! The fans rally as the two go again. Naomi waistlocks, Bayley headlocks to hit a takeover, and she makes it a cover, TWO! Naomi fights up to her feet, powers up but Bayley wrenches gain. Naomi waistlocks, O’Conner Rolls, ONE! Both women get up, Naomi ducks the boot but Bayley arm-drags her around! Bayley has the cording hold, the fans rally up, and Naomi fights to her feet. Naomi whips Bayley away, but Bayley runs her over!

The fans cheer and Bayley tells DMG CTRL she’s watching them, too. Things speed up, Naomi does the splits to duck under, then she comes back to kick from below! She drags Bayley into a cradle, ONE!! Bayley hurries to step over, LA MAGISTROL! ONE!! Naomi and Bayley get up, Naomi trips Bayley to jackknife, ONE!! Ghost pin, TWO! Both women hurry up, DOUBLE CROSSBODIES collide! The fans rally while both women are down, evenly matched in this chess game so far. Both women rise, and Naomi SHOTGUNS first! Then she runs up, uses the ropes to slingshot and BULLDOG! Cover, TWO! Naomi is frustrated but keeps her focus.

Naomi drags Bayley up, Bayley shoves her away. Naomi dodges the lariat to hit REAR VIEW! Cover, TWO!! Bayley survives but Naomi lets her know it was that close, and SmackDown goes to break.

SmackDown returns again and Bayley whips Naomi to a corner, runs in, but into a BOOT! Bayley gets up, Naomi runs up, JAWBREAKER! Bayley ends up in a corner now, Naomi runs in, and she forearm SMASHES! Naomi then runs Bayley corner to corner for a BUCKLE BULLDOG! Naomi slips out to the apron while Bayley flounders, and Naomi climbs. The fans duel as Naomi CROSSBODIES! Cover, TWO! Bayley is tougher than that but Naomi knows that. Naomi keeps her focus while DMG CTRL, Bianca & Jade all focus on them. Naomi ROCKS Bayley, tries the ropes again, but Bayley stops the bulldog to SMACK Naomi off buckles!

Bayley then reels Naomi in, SAIDO! High stack, TWO! Naomi is still in this and Bayley remembers Naomi’s tougher than that, too. Bayley drags Naomi into a drop zone, then goes up the corner! Bayley aims, to MACHO ELBOW onto knees! Bayley writhes, Naomi goes to the apron. Bayley stands, runs up, but into a ROUNDHOUSE! Naomi slingshots, for a FACEBUSTER! Cover, TWO! Bayley survives and Naomi is stunned! Naomi refocuses, goes to the corner, and goes up to SPLIT LEG MOONSAULT onto knees! Bayley returns the favor and both women are down. Bayley shakes out the leg, stands and runs, to KNEE Naomi down!

Bayley hurries to put Naomi back in a drop zone, and then hobbles her way to a corner. Bayley climbs, to MACHO ELBOW!! Direct hit this time and Bayley covers, TWO!! Naomi survives and Bayley is frustrated. Bayley hobbles on the bad leg, leans on ropes while she catches her breath, and the fans duel even more. Bayley stalks Naomi, hooks her up, but Naomi PELES free! Naomi hurries to a corner, Bayley runs up, but Naomi goes up to sunset flip! TWO!! But into the BUTTERFLY LOCK!! Bayley endures, reaches out with her legs, but then she tucks to a cover, TWO!! Naomi gets up, both women throw forearms!

They both wobble, storm up, and Bayley eggs Naomi on. Naomi wants this, right? So hit her! Naomi fires a forearm, Bayley hits back! Naomi winds up to forearm, Bayley comes back with another! The fans fire up as the forearms go harder and faster! Bayley gets the edge, but Naomi SWATS one, to SCORPION KICK, and then JUMP KNEE! Bayley tumbles out of the ring, Naomi PLANCHAS! Direct hit and a hard one, both women are down on the floor! The ring count starts, Naomi stirs at 3 of 10. Naomi brings Bayley up, but BAYLEY2BELLY onto the desk!! The count is 7! Naomi flounders on the desk, but then TIFFANY ATTACKS BAYLEY!!!

Winner: Bayley, by disqualification (still WWE Women’s Champion)

Tiffany makes herself the center of attention as always as she ruins this main event! She dribbles Naomi off the desk, then RAMS Bayley into steel steps! Then she drags Naomi off the desk to POST her! Tiff storms back over to Bayley, puts her in the ring, then adds Naomi in, too. Tiff says sorry not sorry, but it’s Tiffy Time! Tiffy goes to the corner, for the PRETTIEST MOONSAULT EVER! Tiff flexes over both champion and challenger, having upset Bianca & Jade but having entertained DMG CTRL. But will Wrestling Barbie pay for pissing off the Role Model?


My Thoughts:

A great SmackDown that also acted as a WWE Draft go-home. Great match from Styles and Knight to open the night but also follow-up their WrestleMania match. Naturally, Styles wins because then he and Knight are 1-1 in 1v1 matches, and also natural Face VS Heel right there. Good promo from Cody Rhodes, that title match is going to be awesome. Awesome new looks for the WWE Tag Team Championships, though maybe too much gold. Nothing really pops when it’s all the same color, so they should’ve had silver on the WWE logo and the words, “Tag Team Champions,” but it’s still a great redesign.

We also got an awesome Fatal 4 Way tag match, with Theory & Waller decent on commentary. And pieces are falling into place for what I was thinking: Profits win the right to face Theory & Waller, we’ll surely get Lashley wanting the US Championship, we’ll get a good faction feud there as we approach those title matches. Also good continuation of the LWO VS Legado feud with Carlito VS Santos, and distractions of course helped Santos win. There’s gotta come a point where Carlito reveals it was him, Dragon Lee, it was him all along! Now, that would make like the third turn since the start of this rivalry (Santos to Heel, Andrade to Face and Carlito to Heel) but hey, the drama is heightened each time, and maybe Dragon Lee will actually get a win in this feud.

Great stuff in Bayley VS Naomi, as well as all the promos. DMG CTRL watching from the skybox, same as Bianca & Jade, was good stuff. The tag title match is definitely coming for Backlash, that will be great stuff. But I should’ve figured Tiffany would “ruin” the main event so that there won’t really be a choice between Bayley and Naomi. The Draft is coming, hopefully they think to keep all three on the same brand, and probably here on SmackDown, so that those three can have it out. I don’t know the chances of a Triple Threat for Backlash but it still feels possible. Though  at the same time, I don’t think they’d take the title off Bayley after only a month, so she’d probably use Tiffany against Naomi to retain.

And what wild stuff with this new, more vicious Bloodline. Solo is in a suit because he certainly thinks he is Tribal Chief already, given Roman Reigns did give him the nod as “Tribal Heir” a few months ago. And while Tama is the MFT, which everyone is already wondering what that even means, it’s clear he’s also the right hand man and a loose cannon at that. Without the Draft, it’d be pretty wild for Jimmy to come back and help Kevin against this new Bloodline. With the Draft, we could get Jey back on the same brand as his family and then he and Jimmy stand against Solo and Tama. But either way, it’ll be a wild ride in this new chapter and I’m all for it.

My Score: 8.9/10


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Andrew’s TNA iMPACT! Results & Match Ratings: 4.18.2024

Motor City Machine Guns either go out on their backs, or head to Rebellion as champs! Lets see how they finish their current run in TNA!

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No burying the lead here! The Main Event is The System versus Motor City Machine Guns, and it’s the Go Home episode before Rebellion! So we’re guaranteed a damn good tag match, and we should get either new wrinkles, or ways to keep the storylines cooking going into the Pay-per-View.

With all the rumors and innuendo about the Guns being on their way out, I think we all assume that MCMG is losing, but my inner fanboy is still excited.

Ratings:

  • Little Guido w/New FBI vs Hammerstone: Hammerstone wins via Torture Rack – SQUASH
  • LSG vs Joe Hendry: Hendry wins via Standing Ovation – SQUASH
  • Mustafa Ali & GYV vs Cody Deaner, Jake Something & Rhyno: Ali wins via 450 Splash – ** 3/4
  • Rosemary w/Havok vs Jody Threat w/Dani Luna: Rosemary wins via Spear – ***
  • Motor City Machine Guns (Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley) vs The System (Eddie Edwards & Brian Myers) w/Alisha Edwards: System wins via Roster Cut + Knee Party – *** 1/4

 

Results:

So we kick off the match with Josh coming out to commentary again to watch Hammerstone’s match. They really need a new way to try and keep heat without reusing the same tired gimmick of “ring side seat” to a Squash match.

Little Guido w/New FBI vs Hammerstone

Guido tries to shoot the half, but Hammerstone shrugs him off, lifts him like a child and runs him into a corner, few short shots and then just tosses him across the ring. Hammer gets a little distracted talking smack to Josh and eats a foot, but then tosses Guido with the ole Sack of Shit move and keeps working over Guido.

Hammer shoves Clayton, and provokes him to push him back right in front of the referee. She ejects them, Guido tries to take advantage but when he goes for the pinfall Hammer kicks out immediately and presses Guido out of thing through the ropes. Continues to dog walk Guido, puts the head gear on the ECW Original and then Torture Racks him while staring directly at Josh, and of course picks up the submission victory.

LSG vs Joe Hendry

Hendry cuts a little promo, mentioning the Fat Uncle Phil joke…something about shopping at the TOP Dollar Store. Solid mic work.

LSG is a damn good local talent, he’s been seen in ROH and AEW in the past (perhaps others, but that’s what comes to mind immediately for me), but we all know this is an enhancement match. A few nice chain wrestling spots early, but Hendry uses his power to stop the smaller wrestler, Sack of Shit into Standing Ovation and the match is over quickly.

Mustafa Ali & GYV vs Cody Deaner, Jake Something & Rhyno

Well okay, having Deaner ask the crowd if they wanted a 3v2 or their third member…RHYNO…is pretty much a no brainer in Philly. But at least the gimmick isn’t quite as cringe as I expected.

Jake starts with Zack Gibson and throws him around. Jake goes for the tag and Deaner asks the crowd who Jake should tag, and the crowd picks Rhyno. Rhyno Whips Gibson into a corner, Drake actually softens the impact, allowing Gibson to fire back, tag out, but Rhyno levels both GYV members and then even knocks Ali off the apron. Rhyno tries to call to the crowd to tag in Deaner and that goes over like a fart in church. He tags him in anyway, and the crowd is kinda dead and doing whatever it wants after the obvious ECW chants when Rhyno tagged in.

GYV take a couple lumps but they of course start to work over Deaner and capture some momentum. Solid tandem work from GYV, they cut off Deaner from making a tag and goad Jake a little to cause the ref to block off the babyfaces so the heels can take a few shortcuts. Cody eventually makes the tag to Rhyno, hot tag, he tries to set up the Gore but the GYV manage to stop him in his tracks and hit an Enzuigiri to daze the Man Beast, he falls to his corner and Jake tags himself in. Jake literally runs them all over, tags in Cody and Launches him from the Top Rope into Zack Gibson. Ali makes the save and Jake tries to get his hands on Ali, but the GYV keep throwing themselves at him, literally. The triple team finally gets the best of Jake, they hit 3 Dives and then post Jake, so they gather around Cody like hyenas.

They forgot about Rhyno, he’s set up for a Gore, he Gores Drake, Gibson and Ali take out Rhyno, but then Cody starts to fight back. Ali stops Deaner’s offense with an Avalanche Sunset Bomb, then hits his 450 Splash. Jake barely misses being able to break up the pin.

Rosemary w/Havok vs Jody Threat w/Dani Luna

Jody tries to start quickly with Shoulder Tackles, Lariats and Scoop Slams, and it does seem somewhat effective. Rosemary is having trouble finding offense against the intensity, but she keeps kicking out. Shotgun Dropkick finally gives Rosemary an opening, she goes into full mount and rains down strikes. Rosemary shoves Jody into a corner and Bites her in the corner. Jody tries to fight out, they go across and Rosemary catches her with the legs and puts her in the Upside Down. Splash in the corner from Rosemary, Exploder Suplex and Jody is eating a lot of offense.

Rosemary looks like she’s caught after she gets tripped up into the ropes and Jody goes for her Rope Knee into the German, but Rosemary dodges. Rosemary hits her own suplex and pulls out a beautiful Last Chancery! I haven’t seen her do that in a long time. Jody manages to fight to the ropes, Rosemary is a little slow to capitalize and eats a Pump Kick. Rosemary goes flying into the ropes, Jody hits the Double Knees into the German this time for 2, and they trade a few haymakers after that. Jody folds Rosemary with a low Lariat, Zombie rise spot a few times, Jody goes for a pinfall and Rosemary kicks out.

Havok jumps up on the apron, Dani meets her and they decide to step down, but the distraction was enough. Jody turns around and eats a Spear. Rosemary wins!

Motor City Machine Guns (Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley) vs The System (Eddie Edwards & Brian Myers) w/Alisha Edwards

Eddie and Shelley start off, and its a very simple slow start. Mostly an early stalemate, the typical Japanese style the TNA seem to love to employ. Starters tag out, but then Shelley with the blind tag, Sabin Baseball Slides out, picks Eddie’s ankle and sends his face bouncing off the apron, while Shelley sneaks up being Myers and they hit a tandem move before we cut to commercial. Off of the commercial it looks like Eddie and Myers regained control. But a nice Jawbreaker from Shelley sends Eddie falling back into the MCMG corner. Dragon Screws to both legs from Sabin and Shelley, and we get the Dragon Screw dissection spot for the Guns.

Myers gets sick of things, tries to get involved, but Simultaneous Figure Fours from the MCMG makes The System look silly. Alisha does the classic “push the rope forward” gimmick to assist Eddie in breaking the hold. She keeps chirping at Shelley until she finally grabs his foot. Shelley doesn’t take kindly, tries to grab her by the hair but she gets away, Shelley eats a strike and falls back to the ropes so Lish can just throttle him with the rope, Sabin walks over and acts like he’s going to PK her and the look of disgust on her face is hilarious, like “how dare he threaten to kick her”. Would I be mad is Masha decides to team with Lish and they win the Knockouts Tag titles? No, because the Knockouts Tags are trash. But I still prefer Lish as valet/manager.

Shelley starts fighting back after another commercial break, Eddie tries to cut him off, but Sabin clocks Eddie and Shelley manages to make the tag and Sabin comes in. Lights up both System members, Kick off Tornado DDT, into a Running Gamengiri. Eddie tries to counter but Shelley assists, tandem strikes, Double Baseball Slide into the classic MCMG spot 5 Hole Dive! Keeping up with the classics Shelley stacks the System members on each other and hit the Missile Dropkick/Flatliner spot. As the Guns are rolling, Sabin accidentally catches Sabin with his foot and The System take control! They hit their pieces of the System Overload spot, but Sabin kicks out. Roster Cut attempt from Myers, but Shelley is back. High Speed Dirt, Machine Gun Sandwich, but Lish grabs Shelley’s foot when they’re setting up Skull and Bones. Shelley gets dropped on the turnbuckle and thrown out, Sabin eats the Roster Cut followed up with Boston Knee Party and System retains!

Its a little weird to have had the two commercial cuts and the fact there’s still Nic Nemeth to follow. So it feels a little flat, I hope this wasn’t their swan song match, because it was nice to see some classic spots, but it was entirely too abbreviated. 

Nemeth comes out, goes into the crowd and finds a kid with a kendo stick and borrows a beer from someone, so he does a bit of a Sandman tribute. Moose cuts off his promo basically immediately. He throws out the “can’t beat the system” line again, and Nic rolls with the punches well. Moose uses a few cute analogies about Nic having a failure laden past, but Nemeth bites back and its really damn good. He says he can see it in Moose’s eyes that he thinks he’s getting in the ring with Dolph Ziggler, but no, there is no more old Dolph Ziggler, just the new Nic Nemeth. And Moose’s cool seems to be slightly shaken after those words. Good promo.

Overall Score: 6.5/10

So this was okay, if it didn’t end as strongly as it did, I would’ve rated this much lower. Two squash matches in the beginning, reusing the Josh comes out to the announce table to watch trope is boring, hell even Clayton’s shove to Hammerstone was super lame looking. The Deaner match was luke warm at best, but things picked up around the Rosemary match.

Lets also not overlook the segments with ASH & Xia, Jonathan Gresham’s whole deal and EY having to return to the violence/sickness/world class maniac, whatever you want to call it, were all great building blocks. This definitely wasn’t what I would call a strong Go Home, but it didn’t hurt things for Rebellion. The whole injury of Cardona was addressed, which honestly sounded weird since Jordynne basically said she was expecting them to have a backup plan so she has a backup plan. I don’t really like how that video package came across.

But who knows, all I know is, this wasn’t an awful episode, it just wasn’t really strong either.  Here’s to hoping Rebellion Saturday is still strong.


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