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Andrew’s IMPACT Results & Match Ratings: 1.26.2023

This episode is gonna be a real dice roll. A shaky card means that the segments really need to make up for the lack of engagement on paper. Does it get there?

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I have no real clue what to make of this episode. With a throw away X Division Championship match and most likely a Knockouts Tag to just perpetuate the Gisele is a shitty human concept, I don’t see a lot of hope for this episode outside of the main event.

Every now and then there’s a head scratching klunker from IMPACT because they get too wrapped up in their gimmicks and sometimes they all coalesce in the same episode. Hopefully we can salvage some entertainment in the first like 90 minutes as to not be struggle bussing to the final match.

At least the teaser for Gisele’s partner seems to have potential.

Ratings:

  • X Division Championship: Trey Miguel (c) vs Mike Jackson: Trey retains via Lightning Spiral – *
  • The Good Hands vs KUSHIDA & Kevin Knight: Kushida wins via Hoverboard Lock – **
  • Knockouts Tag Team Championship: Death Dollz (Taya Valkyrie & JesSICKa w/ Rosemary) (c) vs Gisele Shaw & Tara w/Jai Vidal: Death Dollz retain via Assisted Sickishi Driver – **
  • Major Players (Brian Myers & Matt Cardona) vs Bullet Club (Ace & Bey): Ace wins via Prawn Hold – ** 1/4
  • Jonathan Gresham vs Sheldon Jean: Gresham wins via Sliding D – *
  • Golden 6 Shooter Elimination: Rhino vs Moose vs Chris Sabin vs Callihan vs Rich Swann vs Eddie Edwards: Rich Swann wins via 450 Splash – *** 1/4

 

Results:

X Division Championship: Trey Miguel (c) vs Mike Jackson

Mike Jackson gets a few moments of Running Shoulder Tackles to knock down Trey since Trey is taking the challenge lightly. A near fall into some shoving and feigning an apology. Jackson is still a moron in his old age and takes the handshake bait to get snuck in the jaw.

Jackson does the straps down, back elbows, swinging Neckbreaker and then goes for some kind of punch combination and gets countered. Its very hard to care about this match since who’s really going to put a title on a 76 year old man. Mike Jackson does the Oldest School, Prayer Walk…whatever you want to call it – before Trey pulls him down and starts kicking him around. Jacky Bryant Kick, into Lightning Spiral…and who cares.

After the match Trey looks under the ring for his spray paint, finds Crazzy Steve already tagged up and taunting Trey. Black Taurus comes out when Trey tries to powder, and I guess Decay isn’t done with Trey yet. 

The Good Hands vs KUSHIDA & Kevin Knight

Skyler starts off for the Good Hands, Knight technically starts but very quick tags. Tandem Arm Wringers and strikes until Skyler manages to powder, get chased and find a way to tag out and start working over Kushida. Hotch pulls off a Chaos Theory German Suplex, so I’m a fan of him now…and they do the tandem cover as Skyler hits the Jacknife cover for 2.

Kushida manages to get some space, tag out and Knight comes in with a hot tag and starts flying around. Some quick work, Cartwheel Dropkick from Kushida. Electric Chair/Dropkick combo as Knight wipes out Hotch and Kushida sinks in the Hoverboard Lock on Skyler.

Knockouts Tag Team Championship: Death Dollz (Taya Valkyrie & JesSICKa w/ Rosemary) (c) vs Gisele Shaw & Tara w/Jai Vidal

Tara comes out and JesSICKa starts bowing, Tara is emotional, Taya looks a little awe struck and actually respectfully shakes hands. Death Dollz are playing the perfect babyface role early on.

It looks like Taya and Tara are going to start, but before they touch, Gisele tags her out like a good heel should. Taya and JesSICKa are both mad they don’t get to wrestle with Tara, so there moves have a little more oomph. Tara keeps holding her hand out for a tag but Gisele is ignoring her and actually says no when Tara tries to ask for the tag.

Tara is trying to be a good sport but Gisele’s ego has her refuse to tag in Tara multiple times. Gisele disrespects Tara by using her old taunt and hitting the Spider Web only for 2. She plays to the crowd asking if they want Tara and then disrespects Tara. Tara walks in to argue while the Death Dollz are…eating popcorn. This is wonderful. Gisele slaps Tara and tries to talk more shit, Tara snaps and Widow’s Peak…the Dollz throw their popcorn and look shocked. Assisted Sickishi Driver and the Dollz retain with an assist to a fed up Tara.

Major Players (Brian Myers & Matt Cardona) vs Bullet Club (Ace & Bey)

Bey gets the best of Cardona early, tags in Ace and we see some solid tandem work with sweeps, kicks, Double Sentons, a lot of fluid Junior style movement. The Majors manage to catch Ace watching both of them, Myers pulls him face first into a rope and then they start working over Ace.

Ace finally rocks Cardona after eating offense for a few minutes, Bey takes the hot tag, cleans house, does a little homage to Shinsuke Nakamura before hitting Cardona with a Jumping Uppercut in the corner. Bey is rolling until Myers scoops Ace off the apron; which distracts Bey, so Cardona catches him with a Lariat and shifts the momentum. Reboot into a Guillotine Leg Drop for 2. Bey manages to defend, Ace tags, hits a rolling Headscissors, they try to set up a 1-2-Sweet but Bey is rocked so he’s slow to the spot. Cardona blocks, a little back and forth before Ace rocks Cardona with a Triangle Kick. Bey turns it into a Victory Roll, but Bey isn’t legal, so Ace tries to pull things apart and quickly figure out a Prawn Hold of sorts to get a sloppy victory.

Jonathan Gresham vs Sheldon Jean

Still surprised Gresham lost to Eddie, but I guess more enhancement matches are how to get right.

As much as Hannifan is trying to go over Sheldon’s resume, no one is buying it. He’s enhancement talent who’s acting cocky but getting relatively worked over. Gresham shows Sheldon what a chainsaw does to a tree, hyperextends his tree, Sliding D to the back of the head…Gresham wins.

Golden 6 Shooter Elimination: Rhino vs Moose vs Chris Sabin vs Callihan vs Rich Swann vs Eddie Edwards

Early tie ups, turn into Moose and Rhino standing off, then Sabin and Rhino…and we just get a little bit of revolving door of square offs. Definitely a little silly to try and go through the play by play here since it’s just different pair offs and a handful of high spots. Callihan gets set up for a Gore but Moose takes the shot to hit Rhino with Lights Out before the Gore. Callihan wipes out Moose and pins Rhino, to eliminate him first.

Moose stacks Swann and Sabin on the top corner, Okada Dropkick hits both, Eddie attacks Moose, Sabin takes advantage of the distraction for a Tornado DDT, but only 2. Sabin keeps the momentum against Eddie and Callihan before we get more interesting spots from everyone taking out 2 people. Swann looks to take out Callihan but Eddie crotches Swann, Gamengiri, Backpack…nope, Swann slips it, face kick, Sabin tries something but Eddie with the Inside Out Side Slam, Powerbombs Swann into Sabin for 2. Eddie looks to Tiger Driver Sabin but no, counter backslide, rope run, Pop Up Flapjack, Tiger Driver finally hits…but only 2. Eddie lines up Boston Knee Party but PCO’s music hits and PCO is pointing at Eddie through the sea of security. Distract Eddie eats a Yakuza Kick from Sabin, Head and Arm Cradle to eliminate Eddie Edwards.

Moose clocks Sabin, a few big strikes and an Uranage for 2. Moose is trying to put Sabin away quickly. Corner charge, Sabin moves, Flying Enzuigiri, Tornado…nope…Lights Out, Chris Sabin is eliminated. Callihan, Swann and Moose are now all in and just trading strikes and headbutts. Back and forth, Callihan throws Swann into the ropes, Lethal Injection…but Callihan powders. Moose kicks out Swann’s leg and starts trying to work over the leg. Great limb work…damn Moose even breaks out a Dragon Screw and then starts just punching the right knee relentlessly. Moose locks in some Stump Puller variation to continue the torture. Moose gets a little cocky, keeps trying to lift on the leg but Swann tucks, rolls and hits the Victory Roll to eliminate Moose.

The Design walks out to tell Callihan to take out Swann as the last step. Callihan goes for a Stretch Muffler on the good leg, Rich counters with a Cradle variation for 2. Swann then starts rocking Callihan with Vader Hammers, Swann tries to fire, kick to the gut, Powerbomb into an Ankle Lock on the back leg. Thumbs Up, Thumbs…kicked in the face. Rich keeps throwing kicks, finally drops Callihan, 450 Splash to eliminate Callihan.

 

Overall Score: 6/10

Only one decent wrestling match, but a few high points through the show. Death Dollz eating popcorn as Tara snaps to the disrespect, Tasha and Savannah finally breaking up, Maclin with a solid point in his promo and of course Hendry’s new song. Major Players will always be Edge’s Bitches to me as well Joe.

Aside from that, the show was a little slow and with predictable matches, the little moments had to really hit to keep some of the entertainment investment. Mike Jackson may be an amusing story, but it was totally worthless. Zero suspension of disbelief.

Not a terrible episode, but not a super strong one either. If you’ve been following IMPACT for a while, the show was better than a purely uninitiated perspective.


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AEW Coverage

Mitchell’s AEW Dynamite Results & Report! (5/22/24)

Roll the dice!

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It’s a risky gamble before Double or Nothing!

Double or Nothing is on Sunday, so Dynamite sets the table! Will AEW World Champion Swerve Strickland use Nick Wayne to send a message to Christian Cage?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Bryan Danielson VS Satnam Singh w/ Sonjay Dutt; wins.
  • FTW Championship #1 Contender’s Triple Threat: Hook VS Katsuyori Shibata VS Bryan Keith; wins and will challenge Chris Jericho for the title at Double or Nothing.
  • Konosuke Takeshita VS Matt Sydal; wins.
  • Will Ospreay & Orange Cassidy VS Trent Beretta & Roderick Strong w/ The Undisputed Kingdom; win.
  • Malakai Black VS Kyle O’Reilly; wins.
  • Toin Storm & Mariah May w/ Luther VS The Outcasts; win.
  • Swerve Strickland VS Nick Wayne; wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

[Due to scheduling conflicts, coverage will be on delay]


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Mitchell’s NJPW Best of the Super Juniors Results & Report! (5/21/24)

A Block, Round 6!

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Former friends turned bitter enemies meet once again.

Best of the Super Juniors continues into Round 6, and A Block has a grudge match on its hands as El Desperado and Yoshinobu Kanemaru face off! Will the Rogue Luchador humble the Heel Master?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Hiromu Takahashi & Yota Tsuji VS Shoma Kato & Katsuya Murashima; Hiromu & Yota win.
  • DOUKI & Taka Michinoku VS SHO & Yujiro Takahashi; Sho & Yujiro win.
  • Six Man Tag: KUSHIDA, Ninja Mack & Dragon Dia VS Drilla Moloney, Taiji Ishimori & Gedo; Kushida, Mack & Dia win.
  • Best of the Super Juniors A Block: TJP VS Kosei Fujita; TJP wins.
  • Best of the Super Juniors A Block: BUSHI VS Clark Connors; Connors wins.
  • Best of the Super Juniors A Block: Blake Christian VS HAYATA; Hayata wins.
  • Best of the Super Juniors A Block: Kevin Knight VS Titan; Titan wins.
  • Best of the Super Juniors A Block: El Desperado VS Yoshinobu Kanemaru; Desperado wins.

PLAY BY PLAY

Here are the current A Block standings!

Blake Christian: 4-1, 8 points
El Desperado: 3-2, 6 points
Clark Connors: 3-2, 6 points
Titan: 3-2, 6 points
Kevin Knight: 3-2, 6 points
HAYATA: 2-3, 4 points
Yoshinobu Kanemaru: 2-3, 4 points
BUSHI: 2-3, 4 points
Kosei Fujita: 2-3, 4 points
TJP: 1-4, 2 points

 

Best of the Super Juniors A Block: TJP VS Kosei Fujita w/ Robbie Eagles!

It’s make or break for the Public Enemy! He must win to stay alive in the block, but he’s up against an equally determined Young Punk! Will TJP cling to hope in the tournament? Or will Fujita kick him out of the hot seat and out of the running?

The bell rings and the fans rally up. TJP and Fujita circle, tie up, and TJP waistlocks. TJP brings Fujita down and facelocks but Fujita slips out to facelock TJP. TJP trips Fujita to cover, ONE! TJP facelocks again, Fujita puts him on ropes, and the ref calls for the break. Fujita lets off with a hard pat on the shoulder. TJP gets in Fujita’s face, but the two reset and circle again. They tie up, Fujita headlocks and hits the takeover. TJP powers up to bridge, and he spins Fujita for a headlock and takeover. Fujita headscissors but TJP headstands. The fans cheer, TJP pops free, and he pats Fujita on the knee. The fans applaud as the two reset.

Fujita and TJP circle, tie up, and TJP wrenches to hammerlock. Fujita reaches back and jumps to flying mare free! Fujita bumps TJP, runs, but TJP drops and handsprings. TJP sets up but Fujita hurdles then shoves TJP to ropes. TJP stops himself to wrench and hammerlock Fujita, then spins and trips Fujita for a toehold. Fujita turns over, reels TJP in but TJP uses that to get the BOW ‘N’ ARROW! Fujita pops free to a cover, ONE! TJP sweeps to a cover, ONE! Fujita headscissors to get the ARMBAR! TJP fights up, works to stack Fujita, and then he gets the leg for a FIGURE FOUR CRAB! Not quite Sharpshooter or Cloverleaf but Fujita suffers all the same!

The fans rally and Fujita fights his way over. Fujita reaches out to the ROPEBREAK! TJP lets go and the fans applaud. TJP drags Fujita up, UPPERCUTS him against ropes, then whips. Fujita reverses but TJP anticipates the drop down to trap the one arm and get the other, DARK SACRIFICE! Fujita writhes, TJP drags him up to hammerlock the bad arm. TJP RAMS Fujita into the corner, sits him down, and he scrubs Fujita’s face! The fans rally up, TJP runs side to side, BOOT WASH! The fans cheer and TJP covers, TWO! Fujita is still in this but TJP drags him from the corner. TJP ties the legs up again, but now it’s a figure four and butterfly stretch combo!

Fujita endures while his head and legs are trapped, but then TJP shifts to twist an arm! Fujita endures, TJP knuckle locks for a cover, TWO! TJP pushes the arms back down, cover, TWO as Fujita bridges! TJP hops on but Fujita uses that to MONKEY FLIP! Fujita rolls back but TJP MONKEY FLIPS in return! TJP rolls back, but into body scissors and a KIMURA! TJP powers his way forward through the leg guard, to get a BOSTON CRAB! Then TJP reaches back to get Fujita’s arms! REVERSE MEXICAN SURFBOARD! Then TJP drops into the toehold, but Fujita scrambles to the ROPEBREAK! TJP lets go and the fans applaud.

TJP stalks Fujita, drags him up, but Fujita fires a forearm. There’s not much to it and TJP pie faces Fujita. Fujita fires another forearm, so TJP UPPERCUTS! TJP whips, Fujita reverses and GAMANGIRIS! Both men are down and the fans fire up! The fans rally and Fujita fires up. Fujita storms up on TJP, but TJP blocks the whip! Fujita still tries, TJP still blocks, so Fujita CHOPS! Fujita whips corner to corner, runs in, but TJP puts him on the apron. TJP swings, Fujita counter punches! Fujita springboards to MISSILE DROPKICK! Cover, TWO! But Fujita sits TJP up and runs to PENALTY KICK! Cover, TWO!

The fans fire up and Fujita shakes out the bad arm. Fujita waistlocks TJP and deadlifts, but TJP fights the rest! TJP pries the hold open but Fujita kicks the clothesline! TJP still catches Fujita to a FINAL CUT! TJP hurries up top now and MAMBA SPLASH! Cover, TWO!! Fujita survives and the fans fire up! TJP catches his breath, drags Fujita up, reels him in, for the HALF HATCH! One Kaibigan! TJP drags Fujita up again, Duwa Kaibigan! TJP drags Fujita up again, but Fujita blocks the third! TJP KNEES Fujita for it, CLUBS him for it, then brings him up again, but Fujita gets around to GERMAN SUPLEX!

Fujita holds on as he brings TJP up, another GERMAN SUPLEX! The fans rally as Fujita GERMAN- NO, TJP fights that with elbows! No hattrick for either man, and TJP runs, but into a waistlock! TJP headlocks free, then gets around to IRON OCTOPUS! Fujita endures, stomps his way forward, and he has the ROPEBREAK! TJP lets go in frustration, and he brings Fujita back around. The fans rally as TJP wrenches, to an ELBOW BREAKER! TJP wrenches again, but Fujita clamps on a SLEEPER! TJP reaches out, slips around, and powers out of the hold, to then SUPERKICK! Fujita staggers but he SUPERKICKS back!

Fujita kicks, but TJP blocks and slips around, LEG CAPTURE SUPLEX! The fans fire up and clap along as TJP pounds the mat. “T! J P! T! J P!” aims from the corner, throws up the crowns, and runs, into a pop-up waistlock! HIGH ANGLE GERMAN! Bridging cover, TWO!! Fujita roars and the fans are thunderous! Fujita storms around, drags TJP up and brings him in, but TJP knees free of the suplex! Inside cradle, TWO! Fujita runs up, trips TJP, rolls and hooks the legs! TJP fights off the Cross Stretch as Fujita wants arms. TJP fights up, arm-drags free, but Fujita drags him into a somersault clutch! TWO, and TJP steps over, PINOY STRETCH!!

The fans fire up as Fujita endures, but TJP thrashes him around! Fujita taps, TJP wins!

Winner: TJP, by submission (gains 2 points; Fujita earns 0)

The Public Enemy stays alive another round! And now with this win, he’s dragged Fujita into the hot seat! The Mighty Don’t Kneel, but will they still miss out on the semifinals? Will TJP make for the biggest comeback story in BOSJ history?

 

Best of the Super Juniors A Block: BUSHI VS Clark Connors!

Black Mask is dangling on the edge while 100 Proof is gearing up for a run at the top! Can Bushi drag Connors down with him? Or will defeat be a hard pill to swallow with No Chaser?

The bell rings and the two rush in! Bushi fires off forearms then runs, but Connors knees low! Connors barks, runs, but Bushi dumps him out! Bushi builds speed, Connors returns, but Bushi fakes out the powerslam! Bushi kicks, whips but Connors reverses, to JEEP FLIPPER! The fans fire up and Connors stalks Bushi to a corner. Connors RIPS Bushi’s shirt away, then CHOKES him with what’s left! The ref counts, Connors lets off, and Connors stands Bushi up to THROW him out. Connors storms out after Bushi, stomps him, then drags him up. Connors brings Bushi around to GRIND his face on the railing!

Connors offers the torn shirt to fans, but then throws it down the ramp! Connors drags Bushi back up, UPPERCUTS him, then brings him around to POST! Bushi falls, the fans rally, but Connors talks trash. Connors goes to the back of the crowd to snatch a fan’s LIJ baseball cap and put it on. Connors wants the ring count, then sits Bushi up to go after the mask! The fans boo but the count is still going! Connors is doing what he did to Titan! Connors stomps Bushi, attacks a Young Lion, then SLAMS the Young Lion onto Bushi! The count is 15 as Connors leaves Bushi behind! Bushi flounders, rises up, and slides in at 19!

The fans cheer as Bushi is safe, but Connors paces. Connors struts up to JUMP ELBOW DROP! Cover, TWO! The fans applaud while Connors gets annoyed. Connors tells fans to shut up, but that only makes them rally harder. Bushi stands to chop, but he can’t put much behind it. Connors throws Bushi down by the mask! Connors clamps on with a chinlock and he grinds Bushi down. Bushi endures, fights around, reaches out, ROPEBREAK! The ref counts, Connors lets off and fans applaud. Connors drags Bushi up, whips him to a corner, then he mocks the fans cheering on Bushi. Connors says they shouldn’t even laugh at him.

Connors runs up but Bushi BOOTS him! Bushi RANAS Connors out of the ring! The fans fire up while Connors flounders back to the apron. Bushi runs up to BLAST Connors, then Bushi builds speed to DIVE! Direct hit and down goes Connors! The fans fire up again while both men stir. Bushi fires up, puts Connors in, then runs in to ELBOW Connors! Bushi puts the bad leg in ropes to DROPKICK it! Then he DRAPING BACKSTABBERS! Bushi stands Connors up, blocks his haymaker, and spins him around. But Connors fights the DDT! Connors wrenches out, Bushi dodges and dropkicks Connors’ leg!

Bushi goes for the legs, but Connors SLAPS him first! Bushi staggers, comes back, but into the SNAP POWERSLAM! The fans fire up while both men are down again. Connors aims from a corner, barks and runs in, but Bushi dropkicks the legs out! Bushi turns Connors over to SMASH the knee! Then the FABLE! Connors endures the leglock but Bushi pulls on the knee! Connors grits his teeth, crawls over, reaches out, but Bushi pulls on the knee more! The fans rally, Connors fights his way over, ROPEBREAK! Bushi lets go in frustration while the fans applaud. Bushi gets Connors up but Connors fights the lift with elbows!

Bushi runs up but Connors ELBOWS him again. Connors snarls, runs, but Bushi DROPKICKS! Connors staggers around while Bushi goes to a corner. Bushi runs up, but into a SPEAR!! Cover, TWO!! Bushi survives and the fans fire up again! Connors snarls, he stalks Bushi and drags him up. Connors serves it up, but Bushi fights No Chaser! Bushi wrenches to backslide, but Connors rolls through to JUNKYARD DOG HEADBUTT! Connors then drags Bushi up and in, for NO CHASER!! Cover, Connors wins!

Winner: Clark Connors, by pinfall (gains 2 points; Bushi earns 0)

100 Proof sweeps LIJ in his block, but then he wants after the mask again! The Young Lions rush in and stop him, so Connors backs off. Connors then takes a fan’s Bushi mask to show it off like a trophy. But will Connors take THE trophy and be the Best of the Super Juniors?

 

Best of the Super Juniors A Block: Blake Christian VS HAYATA!

All Heat finally hit a speedbump in this tournament with last round’s loss while the Silence of Darkness let TJP slip past him. Will the GCW Champion or GHC National Champion establish brand superiority on the way to the top of NJPW?

The bell rings, the two circle and the fans rally. They feel things out, tie up, and Hayata wrenches to a wristlock. Blake rolls, cartwheels, slips through and wrenches to a wristlock. Blake bends Hayata’s fingers to make him flip everyone off. The ref reprimands, Blake sticks to the wristlock, but Hayata rolls and trips him. Hayata drops an elbow on the knee, then pulls on the toehold. Blake pulls on Hayata’s hair but the ref reprimands. Blake uses his legs to turn Hayata to a cover, TWO! The two stand off the fans applaud. Blake and Hayata circle, feel things out, and knuckle lock. Blake rolls, wrangles Hayata but Hayata headscissors!

Blake moves around, pops free, and floats onto a headlock. Hayata powers up and pries free to top wristlock. Blake bridges, kips up, and he wrangles Hayata. Hayata headscissors again but Blake has the ROPEBREAK! The fans cheer and Hayata lets off. The two reset again, knuckle lock, then Hayata trips Blak. Things speed up, Hayata handsprings then sidesteps to atomic drop. Hayata runs to SHOTGUN BOOT! Hayata kips up, the fans cheer, and Hayata runs in at the corner. Hayata blocks Blake’s boot, but Blake pokes him in the eye! Blake then somersaults to PELE the bad arm! Blake reels Hayata in for a BACKBREAKER!

Hayata bails out, fans rally up, and Blake builds speed to FOSBURY FLOP! Direct hit and the fans fire up! Blake walks it off and then mocks their applause. Blake flips everyone off, then goes back to Hayata. Blake drags Hayata around to then stand on the arm, and he drops a knee on it! Blake then stands Hayata up against a post, to slide in and pull him back against it! The ref counts, Blake lets go, and he brings Hayata onto the apron. Blake stands Hayata up but Hayata CLAWS Blake’s eyes! Hayata reels Blake in but Blake fights the facelock to WRING the arm into the apron! Hayata writhes and Blake pushes him into the ring.

Blake stands on Hayata’s hair while pulling the arms! The ref reprimands, but Blake drops a knee on the bad elbow! Hayata sits up, Blake clamps onto him with a keylock! Blake then falls back to JAM up the arm! Hayata clutches the elbow but Blake brings him up. Blake wrenches and UPPERCUTS the bad arm, then hits an ELBOW BREAKER! And then an ARMBAR DDT! Blake mocks the applause, flips the fans off, then covers, TWO! Blake is annoyed but he drags Hayata up to suplex. Hayata slips free and DROPKICKS Blake to ropes! The fans fire up, Hayata runs in, but Blake dumps him out! Blake then somersaults to triangle jump DROPKICK!

Hayata falls to the floor, Blake aims and PLANCHAS, but Hayata moves! Blake lands on his feet but that jams up his knee! Hayata puts Blake in, reels him in to lift, for a SITOUT KNEE BUSTER!! Blake writhes, Hayata ties up the legs and has a Deathlock! Blake endures, reaches out, and backstrokes to the ROPEBREAK! The fans cheer, Hayata lets go, and Blake crawls to the near side. Hayata whips but Blake holds ropes to stop that! Blake ROUNDHOUSES, then BOOTS! Then somersaults, to ARMBAR DDT! And then wrench to DOUBLE KNEE DROP the arm! BASEMENT ENZIGIRI! Cover, TWO! Hayata is still in this and the fans rally.

Blake grabs Hayata’s bad arm, drags him up to UPPERCUT the arm, then he grinds the shoulder. Hayata pulls hair, throws forearms, but Blake knees low. Blake hobbles, but he still whips. Hayata reverses to ENZIGIRI Blake down! The fans rally up while both men go to corners. Hayata runs in to DROPKICK Blake down! The fans fire up again as Hayata climbs. SECOND ROPE SAULT! Cover, TWO! Blake is still in this but Hayata keeps cool. The fans rally, Hayata runs in, but Blake dodges. Blake comes back to BOOT! Blake goes out and springboards, to DOUBLE STOMP the bad arm! Blake hurries to ripcord and SPANISH FLY! Cover, TWO!!

The fans fire up as Hayata hangs in there and Blake grows frustrated! Blake goes to the apron, the fans rally up, and Blake slashes his throat. 450 SPLASH but Hayata moves! Blake lands out but that jams his leg! CRADLE, TWO!! Hayata and Blake stand, Blake gets around to sunset flip, then Oklahoma Roll! TWO, ghost pin! HAYATA WINS!!

Winner: Hayata, by pinfall (gains 2 points; Blake earns 0)

The GHC National Champion inches out the GCW Champion in quite the thriller! However, Blake is still leading this block, will he heat things back up soon enough? Will Hayata be able to make a run at the top here in the latter half?

 

Best of the Super Juniors A Block: Kevin Knight VS Titan!

The Jet was grounded by the Heel Master while El Inmortal was mocked by 100 Proof. Both men are just on the outside of those top spots, will Knight take flight again? Or will Titan keep his semifinal hopes alive?

The bell rings and the fans rally up. The two approach, circle, then tie up. They break, tie up again, then break. Titan trips Knight, things speed up, and Titan cartwheels. Knight hurdles, Titan leaps, and then Knight sidesteps. Titan avoids the dropkick but Knight lands on his feet! Knight runs up, Titan puts him on the apron, but Knight ducks the lariat to throw Titan down! Titan kips up to PELE! The fans fire up as Knight staggers back and Titan builds speed. But Knight gets up to springboard and FLYING LARIAT! Now Titan bails out and Knight builds speed, only for Titan to get away. Knight slides out then goes up the corner to PLANCHA! Direct hit!

The fans fire up and Knight flexes! Knight high-fives Abe-san, then he drags Titan up and into the ring. The fans rally, Knight storms up on Titan and brings him around. Knight scoops to SLAM Titan to a drop zone, then he JET SPLASHES! Cover, TWO! Knight checks the count, it was fair, so he lets it slide. Knight wrenches, whips, and catches Titan to a COBRA TWIST! Knight says he’s very, very, very strong! The fans cheer but Titan fights the hold. Titan hip tosses, Knight flips through! Titan dodges Knight to SUPERKICK! Knight SUPERKICKS back! Knight runs, but Titan goes Matrix to dodge, and then CALF KICK!

Titan whips, Knight reverses and DROPKICKS! The fans fire up while both men are down! Titan flops out of the ring, Knight aims and PLANCHAS, but lands out as Titan moves! Titan builds speed and DIVES! Direct hit and the fans fire up with both men down at their feet! Titan rises, he brings Knight up and in, and then goes to a corner. The fans rally as Titan climbs. Knight gets under the leap, Titan comes back, into a SKY 2 HIGH! Both men are down again and the fans rally up. Titan and Knight rise, and Knight eggs Titan on. Titan sits up, Knight fires a forearm! Titan grits his teeth and forearms back!

Knight CHPOS and the fans cheer! Titan CHPOS and the fans cheer! Knight CHOPS, Titan CHOPS, they stand and throw forearms and CHOPS on repeat! The fans fire up as they pick up speed! Knight ROCKS Titan, but Titan SOBATS! Titan powers up and runs, but Knight LARIATS at the ropes! Knight fires up, whips, but Titan reverses to TORNADO- NO! Knight stops the DDT and suplexes, but Titan rolls it around! Titan suplexes, Knight slips free to waistlock. Titan switches, shoves, runs up and TORNADO- NO! Knight blocks again, and now he carries Titan to pop him up and HEAVY RAIN! Cover, TWO!!

The fans fire up as Titan survives and we only now hit five minutes! Knight waits on Titan as he takes aim. Titan rises as the fans rally, and Knight runs up! SATELLITE- NO, Titan back drops Knight away! The fans rally again as both men go to corners. Knight runs bac up but into a BOOT! SOBAT! KICK! PALM STRIKES! WHEEL KICK! Now Titan wants Knight to rise! The fans rally as Titan throws off the armband and goes corner to corner! But Knight leaps over! And then PELES back! Knight roars, the fans fire up again, and Knight gets Titan up! Knight puts Titan up top, for the UPPER ROOM! Cover, TWO! Titan is still in this and the fans fire up!

Knight storms up on Titan, roars again, and hauls Titan up. Knight fireman’s carries, but Titan fights free! Titan shoves, follows, TORNADO DDT! Titan holds on and brings Knight up, for a GOURD BUSTER! Then SUPERKICK! Knight flops over and Titan goes to the corner. Titan skins the cat to the top, then DIVING DOUBLE STOMPS!! Cover, TWO!! Knight survives, but Titan has the legs! Titan turns Knight over in the deathlock, then JAVE INMORTAL!! Straitjacket on top for good measure! Knight is caught, he QUITS! Titan wins!!

Winner: Titan, by submission (gains 2 points; Knight earns 0)

El Inmortal’s hopes of being a semifinalist still live as he grounds The Jet’s flight! Will Titan reach the same heights as he did last year? Can Knight still course correct with just three rounds left?

 

Best of the Super Juniors A Block: El Desperado VS Yoshinobu Kanemaru!

While The Rogue Luchador vowed to finally win the big one just the other night, this one is personal! Desperado knows all The Heel Master’s tricks, but will that help him here in the sixth? Or will the House of Torture’s stacked deck be too much even for the Best of the Super Juniors?

The bell rings and the fans rally as the two circle. They tie up, Despe powers Kanemaru back, and Red Shoes counts. Despe lets off cleanly and the fans applaud. Kanemaru and Despe reset, tie up, and now Kanemaru puts Despe on ropes. But then Kanemaru kicks the leg! Kanemaru whips, but Despe jumps over the low dropkick! Despe kicks and whips, Kanemaru reverses, but again Despe jumps the low dropkick! The fans cheer as the two stand off and reset. They tie up, Despe blocks the kick! Despe rolls Kanemaru, but then DDTS a leg! The fans cheer, Despe grabs that leg and drops an elbow on the knee.

Despe has the leg in a toehold, Kanemaru pulls at the mask but Despe pulls on the leg! Kanemaru endures as Despe keeps the leg trapped, then Despe lets go to SPLASH the leg! Cover, ONE! The fans cheer and Kanemaru clutches the knee. Despe shakes out his arms and goes back for Kanemaru. Despe drags Kanemaru up but Kanemaru throws body shots. Despe kicks and whips but Kanemaru reveres to hammerlock and scoop SLAM! Despe clutches his elbow but Kanemaru drags him up. Kanemaru wrenches and YANKS the arm, hammerlocks it and scoop SLAMS again! Despe writhes and bails out. Red Shoes checks on Despe, allowing Kanemaru to untie the buckle pad!

The Bullet Club Special is in play and Kanemaru storms out after Despe. Kanemaru drags Despe up, wrenches, and then hammerlocks the arm to POST it! Despe falls and crawls away but Kanemaru catches up to him. Kanemaru SLAMS the bad arm on the floor, then SLAMS it again! Despe writhes, the ring count starts, and Kanemaru leaves Despe behind. The count reaches 8 of 20, Despe stands at 11. Despe leans on the corner, slides in at 15, but Kanemaru stomps him down! Kanemaru YANKS on the arm again and again, then snapmares Despe so he can WRING the arm! Despe writhes but the fans rally up.

Kanemaru grabs the bad arm and he pulls off Despe’s elbow pad! Kanemaru stomps the bad arm, digs his heel into it, then clamps on for a top wristlock. Despe endures, the fans rally, and Despe throws punches into Kanemaru’s back. Kanemaru sits up to put on the pressure, but Despe throws body shots. Kanemaru knees low, whips, then hip tosses! Kanemaru drops a leg on the arm, then clamps on a scissor! Kanemaru pushes up to put on the pressure! Despe kicks and flails while he endures, and the fans rally. Despe fights his way over to the ROPEBREAK! Kanemaru lets go slowly, and kneels on the arm!

Kanemaru plays dumb but Red Shoes points out what he’s doing. Despe throws more body shots until Kanemaru finally steps away. Kanemaru then brings Despe up, hooks the arm, but Despe fights the hip toss. Kanemaru throws a body shot, then hip tosses, into a short arm scissors! Despe endures, reaches out, and the fans rally. Despe clubs at Kanemaru’s leg but Kanemaru pulls on the hold! Despe still fights around, reaches out, and finds the ROPEBREAK! Kanemaru lets go in frustration and Despe scrambles away. Kanemaru stalks Despe, stomps him, then drops a knee on the elbow! Despe writhes but Kanemaru drops another knee, and another knee, and another knee!

Kanemaru pulls on the arm, CLAWS at Despe’s eyes, then brings Despe around to hammerlock the arm. Kanemaru RAMS Despe into the bare buckles! Red Shoes reprimands then checks on Despe. Kanemaru paces but Despe goes to the apron. Kanemaru stands on Despe’s bad arm but Red Shoes counts. Kanemaru stomps Despe as he lets off, and fans still rally. Kanemaru drags Despe up to YANK the bad arm! And YANK it again! Kanemaru whips but Despe fights the hip toss again. Kanemaru CLAWS the eyes and then kicks low. Kanemaru runs, but Despe dropkicks Kanemaru’s legs out! Now things are even as the fans fire up!

The fans rally as Despe and Kanemaru go to corners. Despe stands, shakes out the bad arm, then runs corner to corner. He blocks a boot to dropkick the bad leg! Then Despe grabs the bad leg to DRAGON SCREW! Kanemaru falls over and the fans rally up again. Despe drags Kanemaru by a leg, then drops a leg on the knee! Despe ties Kanemaru’s legs up in the INDIAN DEATHLOCK! Kanemaru CLUBS at Despe’s arm but Despe eggs him on! Kanemaru throws more and more heavy hands and Despe “falls” to put pressure on the leglock! Kanemaru shouts in pain, reaches out, crawls, but Despe shifts to make it a CALF KILLER!

Kanemaru still endures, still fights forward, and still gets the ROPEBREAK! The fans applaud, Red Shoes calls the break and Despe lets go. “Oops!” and he drops knees on the knee. The fans rally up while Kanemaru writhes. Despe drags Kanemaru around, stomps the bad leg, but Kanemaru avoids the elbow drop! Despe shakes out the arms, Kanemaru goes to a corner. Despe runs up, but into a BOOT! Kanemaru runs up, tilt-o-whirls, but Despe fights the DDT! So Kanemaru makes it a KIMURA! Kanemaru drags Despe down and cranks the bad arm! Despe fights his way over, ROPEBREAK! Kanemaru holds until Red Shoes counts!

Kanemaru drags Despe by his bad arm, then reels him in to scoop and BRITISH- NO, Despe slips around to RUSSIAN LEG SWEEP! Both men are down and the fans fire up again! Despe rolls away to ropes, Kanemaru rolls to pursue. The fans rally, Despe rolls back to center to get away from Kanemaru. Despe stands, fires himself up, and then runs in at Kanemaru. But Kanemaru dodges! Despe stops from hitting buckles, but Kanemaru RAMS him into them! And then whips him back into them! Despe falls, Kanemaru runs up and kitchen sink knees! Kanemaru drags Despe up, whips, and kitchen sink knees again!

Kanemaru goes up a corner and MOONSAULTS! Cover, TWO! But then the KIMURA returns!! Despe endures and the fans rally up! Kanemaru cranks on the double wristlock but Despe still fights around! Despe stands, but Kanemaru drags him back down! KIMURA!! Despe endures, kicks and flails, reaches and finds the ROPEBREAK! Kanemaru lets go in frustration but he then goes up a corner. Despe rises, turns around, into DEEP IMPACT!! Cover, TWO!! Despe survives and the fans fire up again! Kanemaru drags Despe up, but Despe fights the suplex! Despe throws body shots, but Kanemaru still tries! Despe turns that around to suplex Kanemaru!

The fans fire up again while both men are down at the 15 minute mark. The fans rally, Despe huffs and puffs and storms over to Kanemaru. Despe drags Kanemaru up, reels him in, but Kanemaru grabs Red Shoes! Despe BOOTS Kanemaru’s arm! Then Despe reels Kanemaru in, but Kanemaru SHOVES Despe into Red Shoes! The fans boo but Kanemaru whips Despe into the bare buckles! Despe writhes, Red Shoes is also down, and Kanemaru of course grabs his bottle of whiskey. Kanemaru takes a swig, goes back for Despe, but Despe smothers him! Kanemaru pushes Despe back, but Despe ROCKS him and sends the whiskey mist flying!

Despe drags Kanemaru up, reels him in, PINCHE- NO, Kanemaru fights that, and jackknife bridges! TWO!!! The fans fire up, Kanemaru BOOTS, then he ducks to BOOT again! And again! And- SPINEBUSTER! Despe flips Kanemaru up to PINCHE LOCO!! Cover, Despe wins!

Winner: El Desperado, by pinfall (gains 2 points; Kanemaru earns 0)

Another main event and another big win for The Rogue Luchador! The Heel Master almost did this clean and almost won because of it, will he realize where he’s going wrong?

As for Desperado, he gets an icepack and a mic to say, “I knew it! As tough as ever! Damn. I’m glad I won.” The fans cheer that. Despe continues by saying, “For each outing, more is needed. Every time I face him, I level up. This was a league match, but that was the level of a final. I’ll keep going, and I promise to make you guys glad you bought a ticket.” The fans also cheer that. Despe says that this is the Osaka-Jo Hall main event we’re talking about! He keeps saying he doesn’t care, but now it’s right in front of him! It’d be a big disappointment if he doesn’t make it, right? There’ll be a lot of guys in both blocks “gutted” they won’t make it. “But for me, I’ll be taking it.”

The fans cheer as The Rogue Luchador is ready to be the Best of the Super Juniors! Just three more rounds to go, will he make it?

 

Here are the NEW A Block standings!

El Desperado: 4-2, 8 points
Blake Christian: 4-2, 8 points
Clark Connors: 4-2, 8 points
Titan: 4-2, 8 points
Kevin Knight: 3-3, 6 points
HAYATA: 3-3, 6 points
Yoshinobu Kanemaru: 2-4, 4 points
BUSHI: 2-4, 4 points
TJP: 2-4, 4 points
Kosei Fujita: 2-4, 4 points


My Thoughts:

A great round for A Block here, and they played up the drama right away with TJP getting that win over Fujita. I can’t really say TJP makes that big comeback to get a spot in the semifinals, because as soon as someone who already beat him gets 5+ wins, they cross him off mathematically. I really like that we’ve got four 4-2 records, those guys are all going strong. Connors has that win over Titan, though, so Titan only gets ahead if Connors falls off in the final three rounds. Blake meanwhile is starting to cool off, and with his loss to Desperado, Blake will need Connors to take Desperado out tomorrow to help him get back up.

And word came in from NJPW today that sadly, Francesco Akira’s knee injury will NOT be okay in time for the next round, or for any of the rounds so he must now forfeit points. As I pointed out last time, the ones who benefit are Hiromu, Douki, Eagles & Sho. Sho gets to six points, the others are at 8 with Kushida, essentially getting B Block to the same situation as A Block. Kushida already beat Hiromu and Sho, so he’d have to fall off pretty bad for either of them to get his spot in the semifinals. Douki is going to face Sho tomorrow, and is still to face Kushida, so Douki could take that spot for himself while taking out Hiromu in the process.

My Score: 9/10


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