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Mitchell’s WWE Raw Results & Report! (1/9/23)

Bliss, you got some ‘splaining to do!

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Is Alexa truly as twisted as we think?

While it looked like the White Rabbit was why Alexa Bliss got disqualified in her Raw Women’s Championship match last week, she says otherwise! Who’re we to believe?

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Baron Corbin w/ JBL VS Kevin Owens; Kevin wins.
  • Bayley w/ Damage CTRL VS Mia Yim; Bayley wins.
  • Candice LeRae VS Rhea Ripley; Rhea wins.
  • Solo Sikoa VS Dolph Ziggler; Solo wins.
  • Tag Team Turmoil: The Good Brothers VS The Street Profits VS The Alpha Academy VS Finn Balor & Damian Priest VS Cedric Alexander & Shelton Benjamin; The Judgment Day wins and will challenge the Usos for the Raw Tag Team Championships.

PLAY BY PLAY

Kevin Owens is here!

Birmingham fires up for the Prizefighter as he heads to the ring, primed for an Undisputed WWE Universal Championship match at the Royal Rumble! Fans chant for “KO! KO!” as Kevin gets the mic. “Thank you. In just three weeks at the Royal Rumble, I’m gonna challenge Roman Reigns for the Undisputed-” Wait, JBL interrupts? What does John “Bradshaw” Layfield have to say? JBL tells Kevin that since he’s not from the South, he’ll explain that most of the people in Alabama are a generation away from walking on all fours. And while Alabama believes in UFOs, Big Foot and the Chupacabra, no one in “Redneckville” believes Kevin can beat Roman Reigns!

But… JBL will introduce us to the person who, in the last three years, has the only pinfall victory over the Tribal Chief, the Head of the Table! So, Alabama, get up on your chubby little hooves, put your woke hands together, and help JBL welcome the Modern Day Wrestling God, Baron! Corbin! Fans boo instead as Corbin makes his way out. “Kevin Owens, JBL already said it but let’s face the facts here. There is no chance you can beat Roman Reigns. And here, I’ll explain it in a way that all of you can understand it. Roman Reigns is Georgia, Kevin Owens is Alabama. He’s a LOSER!” Fans boo Corbin for insulting their college team.

JBL says Bear Bryant is spinning in his grave! Corbin says at the Rumble, Roman will destroy Kevin. And Corbin vows to win the Royal Rumble to then beat Roman Reigns again, and it will be in the main event of WrestleMania to become Undisputed WWE Universal Champion! Kevin buries his face in a corner buckle. JBL shouts at him. Is he in a food coma?! When the Wrestling God is talking, you show respect, “Ya goofy Canadian!” Corbin says if Kevin wants to take a nap, Corbin can put him to sleep right now. Kevin says that he was in a “JBL and Corbin have been talking for three minutes, and they said nothing of interest” coma, that’s what that was.

But Kevin will say that judging by the fans’ faces, nothing said was good. But Kevin has a good idea. He’s dressed for a fight cuz he thought The Bloodline would come for a fight. But these two blowhards will do just fine! Corbin said something about putting Kevin to sleep, that’s obviously a veiled threat, so how about this? They can do this one of two ways: Corbin gets in the ring and gets hit with a stunner; or they ring the bell, they have a match, and then Corbin gets a stunner! The choice is his! JBL is offended on behalf of Corbin, saying, “You wanna fight this fighting machine?” Kevin says yes, his way was very concise.

Kevin says he wants a match, here and now, in Birmingham! Then he’s got it! Corbin throws off the vest, a ref appears, and JBL starts barking from ringside!

Baron Corbin w/ JBL VS Kevin Owens!

The bell rings, Corbin blindsides Kevin! Corbin fires off haymakers, has Kevin in a corner, and the ref counts as Corbin stomps a mudhole in! Corbin digs his boot in, lets off at 4, then argues with the ref. Fans rally for Kevin and taunt “BUM ASS CORBIN!” but Corbin bumps Kevin off buckles. Corbin gets mad at the fans booing and taunting, and he runs in only to get buckles! Kevin fires off hands, whips corner to corner but Corbin reverses! Kevin hits buckles hard, and JBL laughs and applauds. Corbin fires body shots on Kevin, then hands. Corbin CLUBS Kevin to another corner, then throws more haymakers.

Fans taunt and boo Corbin more, but Corbin runs in. Kevin moves and Corbin POSTS himself! Kevin hits an atomic drop then a LARIAT! Kevin brings Corbin up, reels him in, short arm LARIAT! SENTON! Fans fire up for Kevin and he tells JBL to SUCK IT! But Corbin bails out before the cannonball! Fans boo but Kevin goes out to SMACK Corbin off the announce desk! Kevin then reels Corbin in, but Corbin fights free! Corbin choke grips for an APRON CHOKE SLAM! JBL applauds but Bama boos as Raw goes to break.

Raw returns and CANNONBALL! Kevin hits Corbin and fans fire up! Kevin goes to the corner, he climbs up top, but JBL shouts to Corbin. Corbin gets up to fire off hands on Kevin! Corbin climbs up after Kevin, but Kevin resists the superplex with body shots. Kevin HEADBUTTS Corbin back down! Fans fire up, Kevin adjusts, and SWANTON BOMBS! Cover, TWO! Corbin stays in this and JBL is relieved. Kevin scowls as Corbin crawls to ropes but the fans rally up. Kevin kicks but Corbin shoves him away. Corbin swings but Kevin dodges to SUPERKICK! Kevin whips, Corbin holds ropes, and then Corbin BOOTS back!

Corbin runs in, Kevin dodges but Corbin slides out! Corbin slides in, but Kevin gets around, only for Corbin to get Kevin with a DDT! Cover, TWO! Corbin grows frustrated but he drags Kevin up. Kevin ROCKS Corbin with forearm after forearm! Kevin runs, but into a DEEP SIX! Cover, TWO! Fans fire up but Corbin is furious! Corbin throws down fists on Kevin and he stomps away. Corbin drags Kevin up, fires off forearms, then he runs, to ROCK Kevin with a haymaker! Kevin drops to a knee and Corbin taunts the fans. Corbin runs again, but into a kick! STUNNER!! Cover, Kevin wins!

Winner: Kevin Owens, by pinfall

And it all worked out just as Kevin said! But speaking of that, The Bloodline is here! Kevin intercepts Jey Uso at the barriers but Jimmy comes in from the other side! Kevin fights Jimmy off, smacks him off the desk, then counter punches Jey! But Solo Sikoa appears to ROCK Kevin! The brothers mug Kevin 3v1! Fans boo but the Usos send Kevin into barriers! They hammer away, then Jimmy gets a chair! Jey tells Solo to mess Kevin up like they did Riddle! But then Kevin fights back again! He ROCKS Jimmy, ROCKS Jey, but Solo SUPERKICKS Kevin into the timekeeper’s area! And the Bloodline isn’t done, either! Jey drags Kevin up, only for Kevin to BOP Jey with a shoe!

Kevin CHUCKS a chair at Jimmy! And then JAMS Solo with another! And SMACKS Solo on the back! And JAMS Jey, to SMACK him! And then he SMACKS Jimmy! Kevin chases Jimmy into the ring, then right out of the ring! Fans are thunderous as the Prizefighter stands tall! Solo wants more of Kevin but Adam Pearce, producers and the refs rush out! Pearce says “Well here we are again!” He won’t let The Bloodline do what they want, so he has them get to the back. Kevin is ready to #JustKeepFighting, but will he have to wait for Sami Zayn on this Friday Night SmackDown?

 

The Bloodline regroups backstage.

Jey vows that no matter what, they’re gonna get at Kevin. But then Pearce asks them where they’re going. They tell “AP” that they’re leaving, obviously. Message sent from the Tribal Chief. Right, right, but see, there is going to be a Tag Team Turmoil match tonight, and the winners are the very next team to get their hands on the Usos tonight for a RAW Tag Team Championship match! That’s right, the Raw Tag Division has been victimized by the Usos hence this match. But see you on SmackDown. As for Solo, you’re staying. Yeah, the Usos don’t get to be in Solo’s corner tonight as he takes on someone he personally attacked: Dolph Ziggler.

The Usos are of course upset! If Solo doesn’t go, they aren’t going! Kevin Owens is still running around! Pearce tells them not to worry about Kevin, Pearce took care of him already. And Kevin understands the ramifications if he sticks his nose in the match tonight. Now, security, escort the Usos to the exit. The Usos tell Solo he has this, but will the Samoan Enforcer be able to take down the Show-Off all on his own?

 

Raw has an update on Bianca Belair.

While Alexa Bliss’ attack on the EST was incredibly brutal, the worst Bianca comes away with is a few stitches. She will still be able to compete and is still Raw Women’s Champion, but here comes Alexa Bliss! She stands right on the announce desk to say, “Bianca Belair might be the Raw Women’s Champion, but I’m the only one here. Because when I busted her face a week ago, Bianca decided to run and hide. Smart on her end because she knows she doesn’t need to be afraid of Bray Wyatt or Uncle Howdy; she needs to be afraid of me.” Bliss then looks at Corey Graves to say SHE is the Face of Evil.

And Bliss doesn’t feel bad for what she did. She hasn’t felt this good in a really, really long time! She has finally taken control, and SHE is the one in charge. She has the whole world in her hands and she’s not afraid to use her hands to tear more scars into Bianca’s face to take the Raw Women’s title. But then wait, something takes over the video feed. Is that a playground…? And Uncle Howdy is laughing on screen! “Do you feel in charge? Do you feel like you’re in charge?” Alexa glares at the ramp as UNCLE HOWDY IS HERE!! He seems amused at Bliss thinking she’s the boss. Is he still the one pulling her strings?

 

Bayley w/ Damage CTRL VS Mia Yim!

The Role Model is feeling great after she helped screw over Mia Yim & Becky Lynch in their match against Dakota Kai & Iyo Sky, but now she must put her money where her mouth is! Will Michin get even with Bayley? Or will the Head Baddie In Charge not be able to fight the numbers game?

But before the match gets going, Bayley wants a mic. Bayley gets a mic, and she tells Mia to hold on. She wants to send a message to Becky because she must be watching given her weird obsession with DMG CTRL. But anyway, this is for Becky. Maybe Becky is jealous of the bond that DMG CTRL has since Becky has no friends at all, not even Mia. But Bayley wants Becky to know that she’s either here tonight because she can’t stand what DMG CTRL has, or Becky isn’t here because she can’t stand that she lost! But honestly, Bayley couldn’t care less what the excuse is, because tonight is about Kai & Sky!

Bayley says Kai & Sky have worked so hard, she is giving them the night off. Please, go relax in the back with the best seats in the house. But more importantly, Becky can watch what Bayley does to her “friend,” Michin. Kai & Sky make their way to the ramp and the bell rings, and Bayley fires off on Mia! Fans boo as Bayley rains down fists! Bayley lets off to soak up the heat and bring Mia up. Bayley whips Mia to the corner, Mia BOOTS her back! Mia then hits a RUNNING NECKBREAKER! Mia rains down fists on Bayley and fans fire up! Mia storms around, waits on Bayley, and Bayley staggers up into a DROPKICK!

Mia drags Bayley up, brings her around and whips, but Bayley reverses. Mia goes Spider-Woman in the ropes! Bayley runs in but is sent right out! Mia then builds speed to fake the dive as Bayley slides in. But then Bayley slides right back out, and Mia goes to the apron. Mia PENALTY KICKS Bayley down! Fans fire up and Mia says that kick was good as Raw goes to break.

Raw returns and Bayley grinds Mia down with a chinlock. Mia endures, Bayley insults the fans for rallying up behind her. Mia fights up, throws body shots, but Bayley whips her out to the apron. Bayley drags Mia up to HOTSHOT in the ropes! Mia flops down, Bayley mocks the fans clapping for Mia, and then Bayley runs to slide, and throw Mia onto the apron! Bayley suplexes Mia to the floor! Mia writhes and Bayley mocks the fans wanting Becky. “She’s not here!” Bayley puts Mia in, covers, TWO! Mia is hanging tough but Bayley drags her up. Mia throws body shots, then forearms! But Bayley pushes her to the corner!

Bayley runs in, but Mia puts her on the apron. Bayley shoulders in, drags Mia through ropes, and she goes for the hotshot but Mia shoves her down! Mia runs and DIVES! Direct hit at the ramp and fans fire up! Mia drags Bayley up and into the ring, then hurries to fire off slaps and kicks! SOBAT, PELE! Mia then reels Bayley in, GERMAN SUPLEX! Bayley goes to the apron, Mia drags her in but Bayley ROCKS her! But Mia hits the SPIKE-RANA! Cover, TWO! Bayley crawls to a corner but fans rally for Mia! Mia runs in but Bayley avoids the cannonball! Mia hits buckles, Bayley brings her up, but Mia slips free of the Bayley2Belly!

Mia rolls Bayley, Bayley rolls through and ducks aa buzzsaw! BIG back suplex, but Mia lands on her feet! HEEL KICK! Bayley flounders, Mia waistlocks but Bayley holds ropes! Bayley fights, slips under and pushes Mia into buckles! Bayley backslides, but with feet on the ropes!! BAYLEY WINS!

Winner: Bayley, by pinfall

The Role Model did it all on her own, but it still wasn’t fair ‘n’ square! If this is how Bayley beats the Head Baddie, what chance will she have against The Man?

 

BREAKING NEWS on Johnny Gargano.

Johnny Wrestling hasn’t been wrestling lately, and won’t be for some time as he has a grade 2 AC sprain. We all wish him a speedy recovery so that we can see Johnny wrestling again.

Backstage interview with Candice LeRae.

Cathy Kelley asks for an injury update on Candice’s husband, Johnny Gargano. Candice knows Johnny Wrestling is bummed that he can’t join Tag Team Turmoil. But the doctors advised him to rest and recovery to 100%, so that’s the goal. And Candice herself recently battled back from injury, so what’s next for her? Well the Royal Rumble’s coming, and who doesn’t dream of punching their ticket to WrestleMania by winning the Rumble? But then Rhea Ripley walks in to say, “Whoa, whoa, Candice. I’m going to go check on my Latino Heat before his exclusive MizTV interview, and I could hear your excitement from over there, and it’s infuriating.”

Candice is excited to go to the Royal Rumble because she thinks she has a chance of winning? That’s delusional! Candice says she has just a good of a chance as Rhea. Rhea says the only chance Candice has is having her “stupid little pixie wings plucked and absolutely ripped apart.” Then why wait? Candice wants to do this tonight! Rhea laughs, and says it’ll be a great homecoming for Dominik when Mami squashes Candice like a bug. See you in the ring! Will the Eradicator make tonight a nightmare for Candice?

 

Austin Theory is here!

The Now of the WWE is still the United States Champion, and fans boo as he heads to the ring. Theory gets the mic to say, “The champ! Is! HEEERE!” Fans boo, Theory is no Cena. But Theory grins as he continues, “And all of you now have to accept the truth. And the truth is that The Now is forever!” Fans boo more and Theory pretends to be confused. Where’s the Visionary? Where’s Seth Freakin’ Rollins? He thought Rollins was gonna outshine Theory, outclass him, and beat him! And shut up with the “What!” But fans now chant, “We Want Rollins!” Well too bad! Because Seth Rollins limped away from the ring because his old knee couldn’t hold up against Theory!

“So what happened? Don’t you boo me, you know what happened last week. Seth Freakin’ Rollins was outclassed. Seth Freakin’ Rollins was outshined. And Seth Freakin’ Rollins was taken to school by the United States Champion, Austin FREAKIN’ Theory!” But then ROLLINS IS HERE?! Fans fire up for him, but Rollins is on crutches. Fans still sing “OH~ OHH~ OHHH~!” and then Rollins is walking just fine! Rollins tricks Theory there and the fans love it! Rollins plays the crutch like a guitar as he swaggers to the ring, and then Rollins gets in the ring with Theory. Theory fumes as Rollins gets his own mic to respond.

But Theory says that while the fans are singing that “stupid song,” and that might be real, what isn’t real is Seth acting like his knee hurts. Theory tells Rollins that Rollins acts like he’s 100% but he’s not. As much as fans wanna sing the song, they all know Theory beat Rollins last week. Rollins doesn’t like hearing that, huh? But Rollins was the one who said he is the mountaintop. Then that must make Theory the pinnacle of this entire industry! Fans boo but Rollins just leans on the crutch. Theory says, “But you know what? You are one of the best. You are. You truly are. But me? I’ve surpassed your ass. And I’m on to bigger and better things.

“Like, when I go on and win the 2023 Royal Rumble!” Fans boo but Theory says, “Wait! There’s more! After I win the Royal Rumble, I, me, Austin Theory, is gonna go on to headline WrestleMania. And I am not only gonna walk out the United States Champion, but I’m gonna walk out the NEW Undisputed WWE Universal Champion.” Fans boo more but Rollins finally speaks. “Are you done?” Rollins takes off his sunglasses and fans sing his song more. Rollins appreciates that, but he has to give us all an update on his knee. Rollins says the truth is, his knee is not 100%. But his knee will be 100% just in time for Rollins to win the Royal Rumble match!

Fans cheer and Rollins says he will be 100% in plenty of time for Seth Freakin’ Rollins to main event WrestleMania! “And truth be told, I just came out here so I could hear you fine folks of Birmingham sing my song.” “OH~ OHH~ OHHH~!” Rollins tells Theory, “I’ll see you at the Rumble… kid!” Rollins leaves Theory with the crutch, but then BOBBY LASHLEY is here?! Theory and Rollins are shocked while Birmingham is fired up for the All Mighty! Lashley and Rollins cross paths at the ramp, but Lashley lets Rollins go by. Theory warns Lashley to NOT come into the ring! Lashley is the PAST, this is THEORY’S RING!

But Lashley gets in, Theory swings the crutch, but misses! Lashley SPEARS Theory down! Fans fire up and Lashley is feeling it! Fans chant for “BOBBY! BOBBY!” and he drags Theory up, to TOSS him right out! Theory flounders while Lashley grabs a mic. “Look, it doesn’t matter who’s in the Royal Rumble, because I’m back! My suspension’s over and I can’t wait to manhandle every superstar in the Rumble.” Mic drop and the message has been sent! Will the Rocky Mountain Machine mangle everyone in his way of returning to WrestleMania?

 

Candice LeRae VS Rhea Ripley!

While Mr. Wrestling is recovering, Mrs. Wrestling is holding down the fort! But will she be able to derail Rhea ahead of the Royal Rumble? Or will Candice be reminded of Rhea’s brutality?

The bell rings and the fans rally as the two approach. Rhea talks trash, pie faces Candice, but Candice ROCKS and CHOPS and repeat! Fans fire up as Candice fires off on Rhea! Rhea shoves Candice away, runs in but Candice avoids the boot! Roll up, TWO! Candice goes to a corner, Rhea runs in but into a BOOT! Rhea runs in, Candice sends her into buckles! Candice goes up, leaps, but Rhea blocks the tornado DDT to TOSS Candice! Candice sits up in a daze, Rhea pushes her to a cover, TWO! Rhea argues the count but the ref defends it was fair. Rhea sits Candice up to KICK her in the back! Then she bumps Candice off buckles.

Rhea soaks up the cheers and jeers, then whips Candice corner to corner hard! Candice falls but Rhea hip drops her down. Rhea drags Candice up, bumps her off buckles, and then RAMS into her! And again! And again! The ref counts, Rhea lest off at 4, and then Rhea taunts Candice. Candice SLAPS Rhea, so Rhea CLUBS Candice! Rhea drags Candice up to TOSS her across the way! “That’s why I’m the best!” Rhea drags Candice up again, TOSSES her again, and then watches Candice flounder to the corner. Rhea RAMS in again, and again, and again! The ref counts, and Rhea lets off at 4. Rhea hoists Candice up top, then ROCKS her!

Rhea climbs up, smirks, and she brings Candice up. Candice fights the superplex to slip under! And she avoids punches! Candice then SUPER GERMAN SUPLEXES Rhea down!! Fans fire up as Rhea flounders to ropes! Candice drags herself up, Rhea runs in, but Candice dumps her out! That’d be an elimination in the Rumble! Candice WRECKS Rhea with a dropkick, then climbs up top! Candice CROSSBODIES, but into Rhea’s arms! Rhea SLAMS Candice into barriers! And then Rhea ties up the legs, PRISM TRAP! Candice can only endure on the outside, and Rhea SWINGS Candice into more barriers!

Rhea puts Candice in the ring while fans boo. Rhea drags Candice up, pump handles, RIPTIDE!! Cover, Rhea wins!

Winner: Rhea Ripley, by pinfall

The Eradicator crushes Candice, proving she’s the one to watch. Will Ripley rename it the Rhea Rumble?

 

Backstage interview with Bobby Lashley.

Byron Saxton asks Lashley that the suspension has been lifted and that Lashley is entering the Rumble. MVP walks in and wants Byron to excuse himself so he can discuss “business” with Lashley. MVP offers a handshake but Lashley leaves it hanging. Okay, understandable that tensions are still high. But maybe Lashley has something to say to MVP. Like, “Thank you, MVP, for getting me reinstated on Monday Night Raw.” Okay, P, Lashley does appreciate you. So they’re good? Lashley hasn’t punched MVP out, has he? Well, that is a start. But MVP wants Lashley to understand he’s mending fences. Mistakes were made.

But Lashley also knows how well this works when they’re on the same page. He wants to get them back to what they do best. And Lashley’s mistake wasn’t so easy to smooth over, either. But MVP got Pearce to realize Mondays need Lashley. Hell, MVP got Shelton & Cedric to realize their mistakes, and now they’re in the Tag Team Turmoil to win that chance to put some hurt on the Usos. Lashley is not going to forget what went down between them. Lashley says they’re good, but not that good. MVP respects that. Lashley can handle his business as he sees fit. But if he wishes to “expand” that business, MVP’s number is still the same. Is MVP hoping for the second coming of the Hurt Business?

 

Money in the Bank is heading to the UK!

The O2 Arena will host this high stakes event on Saturday, July 1st! Clash of the Castle was big, just wait for this one to raise the ante!

 

Cody Rhodes’ comeback story continues.

He vowed to do it for himself, for the fans, and for his father, Dusty Rhodes. But June 5, 2022, Hell in a Cell, even with a torn pectoral muscle, Cody refused to rob the fans of his match with Seth Rollins. “It was like oxygen, I needed to be in the ring that night.” And it is a moment that won’t soon be forgotten. Cody knows the questions were if it was safe. He admits he was so nauseous with pain that he almost vomited after hitting his Cody Cutter. And he admits, he was the car wreck you can’t look away from. In the end, Cody won that match, but he has not watched it back. He is proud of that moment, but he can’t watch it back because of how scary it really is.

The reception backstage was somber, because everyone knew he needed surgery. And four days later, here in Birmingham, Cody was worked on by Doctor Jeffrey Dugas. Cody’s wife, Brandi, knows there were nerves. Cody’s never had a major surgery like this, but Dr. Dugas found it was better than expected. They thought it was a muscular injury and not a tendon injury, and that’s better. The main thing is, it has to heal. He explained as much to Cody, and Cody says the questions started creeping in. How long until he could return? Would he return as good as he was? Is he willing to go down the road in front of him to get back to that level? The work begins now.

 

Backstage interview with Dolph Ziggler.

Cathy says it has been a couple of chaotic weeks for him, but where is his head at going into the match with Solo Sikoa? Ziggler says his head is where it always is: focused on being the best. A few weeks ago, The Bloodline kicked down the door, busted into Raw, and did what they do. But they went too far. That is why Ziggler is here tonight. Ziggler wants revenge, but then Mustafa Ali rushes over! He just came from Adam Pearce’s office, learned that Ali and Ziggler had a chance in Tag Team Turmoil! But then Ziggler DECLINED it just to get Solo 1v1?! Ziggler says that was not personal against Ali.

But Ali says Ziggler owes him! Last month, Ziggler cost Ali the US title. Now tonight, Ziggler just cost Ali a shot at tag titles! What is Ziggler’s problem? Ziggler admits to messing up the US title, he owned up to it, and yeah, Ali & Ziggler could probably do really good as a team. But tonight isn’t about teams, it isn’t about titles, and it’s not about Ali. Ziggler hopes Ali can understand that. Ziggler heads out and Ali frowns, but will The Beacon respect the Show-Off’s choice to settle scores?

 

Backstage interview with Bronson Reed.

Byron notes this returning superstar “made a big splash” during the Miz VS Lumis ladder match. What can Bronson tell us about his choice to back-up The Miz? But then Miz walks over to say that he’ll take this. “We have each other’s backs.” Bronson saw Miz was outnumbered, and he isn’t just a bruiser, he’s “a highly ethical man.” But he doesn’t like Miz touching his shoulder. Miz lets off and wants everyone to know that when you mess with him, you mess with them. Also, Miz invites Bronson to MizTV tonight, with a seat in the VIP section. Y’know, as a friend. Friend? Bronson tells Miz that there is no “them.” If Miz wants something, he has to PAY Bronson.

The Top Dog heads out, and Miz tries to laugh that off. This is part of their rapport. It’s French. Sh-shut up, Byron! Miz storms off, but is Miz just digging himself into a colossal financial hole?

 

Solo Sikoa VS Dolph Ziggler!

The Bloodline has been doing what they want, when they want and to who they want, but finally those targets are fighting back! Will the Enforcer of the Island realize it’s easier when he has his brothers by his side? Or can he prove he can actually win when he’s solo?

The bell rings and Ziggler fires off fists! He has Solo in a corner, but Solo shoves him away. Ziggler comes back to SPLASH, and then he fires off more fists! Solo shoves Ziggler away again, then CLOBBERS him! Solo stares at his heavily taped thumb, and he stalks Ziggler to a corner. Solo drags Ziggler up on the apron but Ziggler shoulders into him! Ziggler HOTSHOTS Solo, runs in and jumps on for a SLEEPER! Solo stays up, RAMS Ziggler into buckles, but Ziggler holds on! Solo RAMS Ziggler into buckles again, then TOSSES Ziggler off him! Solo runs in, to UPPERCUT Ziggler down! Fans rally while Solo snarls.

Solo stomps Ziggler at the ropes, but lets off as the ref reprimands. Solo CLUBS Ziggler, rains down fists, then drags him from ropes. Solo stomps Ziggler in the stomach! Ziggler writhes, Solo takes aim from a corner, and he runs in to FALLING HEADBUTT! Cover, TWO! Solo snarls and he drags Ziggler up by his hair. The ref reprimands but Solo shifts to claws in the shoulders! Ziggler endures, fans rally up, and Ziggler fights up. Ziggler stomps Solo’s foot, throws elbows, then a JAWBREAKER! Solos taggers, Ziggler runs in and SPLASHES! Ziggler rains down fists again, then turns Solo, only for Solo to power out!

Solo scoops, Ziggler slips out, and Ziggler fires off haymakers and a DROPKCIK! And then the SATELLITE- NO! Solo holds that off to TOSS Ziggler out of the ring!! Fans boo and Solo snarls more as Raw goes to break.

Raw returns and Ziggler is in the corner. Solo runs in to HIP ATTACK! Ziggler flops over while fans boo. Solo still scowls as he covers, TWO! Ziggler survives but Solo HEADBUTTS him down! And again! And again! Solo drags Ziggler into the chinlock and he grinds Ziggler down. Fans rally and Ziggler fights back up, to throw elbows and body shots! Solo shoves Ziggler away to then SAMOAN DROP! Ziggler crawls to ropes while Solo aims from the corner. Solo runs in again, but Ziggler ELBOWS him away! Solo staggers, into a haymaker! Solo runs in but into a BOOT! Ziggler goes to another corner, Solo runs in, but Ziggler dodges! Solo gets only buckles!

SATELLITE DDT! Cover, TWO!! Solo survives but he’s dazed after that one! Ziggler slaps himself to fire back up! Ziggler CLUBS away on Solo, then brings Solo up again. Solo powers out to HEADBUTT! Ziggler staggers, into the fireman’s carry. But Solo takes too long taunting, Ziggler slips off to ZIGZAG! Cover, TWO!! Solo survives Ziggler’s best shot and Ziggler is beside himself! Both men are down but fans rally back up. Ziggler drags Solo up, throws body shot after body shot, then HEADBUTTS! Ziggler aims, SUPER- NO, Solo blocks the kick and shoves Ziggler down! Solo runs in, only gets buckles, Ziggler kicks legs out!

Ziggler runs, but Solo catches Famouser into a POP-UP SAMOAN SPIKE!!! Cover, Solo wins!

Winner: Solo Sikoa, by pinfall

Solo defeats a Grand Slam Champion in Ziggler, that’s perhaps the biggest win yet! And the Usos return! Jimmy & Jey didn’t obey orders, they’re here to celebrate with their brother. Will the Bloodline continue to dominate all of the WWE?

 

Backstage interview with DMG CTRL.

Cathy was wondering if Bayley’s statement win was a message sent to Becky Lynch. Bayley says the statement was when Bayley beat Becky, just like how she just beat Mia Yim. Just like DMG CTRL has sent a message to the entire locker room by proving they’re a force to be reckoned with. But Mia walks over to say, “All you’ve proven is that you’re nothing but a fraud and a cheat.” Bayley tells Mia that no one likes a sore loser. But as the Role Model, she is all about bringing her fellow superstars up. So she’s proud of Mia stepping up to Bayley in Becky’s place, but the difference between them is that Bayley isn’t afraid to accept help.

Just like Bayley isn’t afraid to accept help in kicking Mia’s ass! DMG CTRL attacks 3v1! They beat Mia down, then drag her up so Bayley can give Mia some advice. “Don’t step up for someone who won’t be here for you.” Becky is an idiot, and so is Mia! Sky then BOOTS Mia down! DMG CTRL laughs and leaves, but will Michin find help in getting revenge?

 

The Miz heads to the ring!

The Hollywood A-Lister is ready for his exclusive tell-all edition of MizTV! He welcomes us to the Most Must-See WWE Talk Show, and tonight, he outdid himself! Tonight, he realized that he has had a lot of notable guests on this show. Like John Cena, like Roman Reigns, but tonight on the first MizTV of 2023, Miz will give us an exclusive look into the American justice system! Give it up for the Judgment Day’s very own bad boy, Dominik Mysterio! The Judgment Day accompanies their “hardened criminal” out, and Dom does the thug life squat. They enter the ring, Dom and Rhea take a seat with Finn and Priest behind them.

The Miz thanks them for being here, and apologizes that there aren’t more chairs. He was only expecting Dominik and “Mommy.” But more the merrier. Dom tells Miz, “The one thing I learned in prison is you always roll with your crew.” Miz says speaking of, he must ask. What’s it like on the inside? “Snitches get stitches.” Rhea says it’s ok, Mami’s here. Finn says Dom is safe, he’s a free man, he can share the experience. Miz is sure he speaks for everyone in the arena that we all want to know what happened. Fans sound a bit torn, actually.

Dom says, “You wanna know? Imagine being locked up with the world’s most dangerous people. And not knowing when your next meal was gonna be, and it’s either push or be pushed.” So what did Dom choose? Dom did a lot of thinking, and he thought, “If I am ever gonna see Mami on the other side again, I have to do what I have to do.” And Rhea confirms that Dom did. Dom says “When life comes at you with crazy changes, you just gotta grab it by the balls. Kind alike what Maryse does to you.” Miz lets that one slide, and says this isn’t about him. Priest says that’s right, this isn’t about Miz. Priest wants Dom to share that story about he scared that guy straight.

Dom says that is a good story. Dom was in his cell with his cellmate, and he was in the top bunk, asleep. Dom overheard his cellmate saying he wanted to punch a hole in Dom’s face. So what did Dom do? Finn asks, “What’d you do, Dom?” Dom hopped down, slapped him awake, and asked him, “We got a problem here?” And that was that. Yes, a traumatic experience. Miz says the fans need to applaud Dom for sharing the perseverance of the human spirit! Fans boo instead. Dom says he now truly understands how Martha Stewart feels. Miz is sure he does. But we’ve been talking about prison, and Miz’s sources told him that Dom was only held in county jail, for a few hours.

Priest steps up, “What’d you say?!” Miz wants everyone to calm down. But Dom is wearing a $500 off-white flannel! But Miz was just asking questions. What’s Dom gonna say next, though? That he was eating gruel omelets in the clink and being chased by Dementors? Priest dares Miz to say that again. Miz says maybe he was misinformed. That’s more like it. Now Dom will be here to witness Priest & Finn win Tag Team Turmoil tonight! And the Usos better know, Judgment Day is coming for the tag titles. As for The Miz… Wait! Here come the Good Brothers! Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson are ready, will they be the ones earning that Raw Tag title opportunity?

Tag Team Turmoil!

Finn Balor & Damian Priest w/ Judgment Day VS The Good Brothers!

Raw returns and the teams sort out to start this tag team gauntlet. The Prince starts against the Machine Gun, the bell rings and the two feel things out. Finn kicks low, throws haymakers, then whips Karl to ropes. Karl reverses to CLOBBER Finn! Karl bumps Finn off buckles, fires off hands and CHOPS, but Finn turns things around to CHOP back! Finn RAMS into Karl again and again, then lets off at the ref’s count. Finn whips corner to corner, runs in and CHOPS, then he brings Karl out to wrench an arm. Karl knees low, whips Finn to a corner, and Finn BOOTS back! Things speed up but Karl DROPKICKS Finn! Cover, TWO!

Karl clamps onto Finn, bumps him off buckles, then tags in Gallows. The Good Brothers double whip, run Finn over, and then Gallows rains down elbows into Finn’s shoulder! Gallows drags Finn up, ROCKS him with a right, and then tags Karl back in. The Good Brothers mug Finn while Rhea protests. Karl CHOPS Finn, bumps him off buckles, and tags Gallows back in. The Good Brothers mug Finn, then Gallows bumps Finn off buckles. Gallows fires off heavy hands, but lets off as the ref counts. Gallows scoops but Finn slips off and KICKS Gallows in the leg! Gallows just snarls as he storms up on Finn.

Finn tags Priest and now the big men circle. They tie up, Gallows kicks low and whips Priest to a corner. Gallows runs in to SPLASH! Fans rally, Gallows reels Priest in but Priest wrenches out to ROCK Gallows, then fire off kicks! Priest runs, but Gallows ROUNDHOUSES him! Priest goes to a corner, Gallows is on him and whips him to ropes. Priest ducks the boot to come back and kick a leg out! Priest stomps away, drags Gallows over and he tags in Finn. The Judgment Day mugs Gallows, focusing on the legs. Finn wraps Gallows’ leg around ropes to pull on it! The ref reprimands, Finn lets off and Finn kicks the leg!

Finn soaks up the heat, then he pulls on the legs! The ref counts, Finn lets off, but Gallows CLUBS Finn down! Priest tags in, he stomps and kicks away on the bad leg! The ref counts, Priest lets off, and then he drags Gallows up. Priest whips corner to corner, runs in, and he back elbows! Priest brings Gallows out to suplex, but Gallows fights it! Priest tries again, but Gallows suplexes Priest instead! Hot tag to Karl! Fans fire up as the Machine Gun CHOPS and UPPERCUTS on Priest, then BLASTS Finn! Priest TOSSES Karl to a corner but Karl dodges to CHOP and UPPERCUT again! Karl whips corner to corner, but Priest reverses

Priest runs in but Karl dodges! ROCKET KICK! Finn runs in but Karl blocks the kick and gives it to the ref! The ref reprimands, but Karl DECKS Finn! Finn flounders up and distracts the ref, allowing Priest to drag Karl out and RAM him into steel steps! Gallows is furious and fans boo but the Judgment Day is in control as Raw goes to break.

Raw returns again and Finn whips Karl away from Gallows, only for Karl to BLAST Priest! Karl then avoids Finn and hits a NECKBREAKER! Both men are down and fans rally up! Karl crawls, hot tag to Gallows! Big LG rallies on Finn with big clotheslines and an UPPERCUT! Finn goes to a corner, Gallows runs in to back elbow! Gallows keeps moving, FLYING SHOULDER! Priest runs in but Gallows CLUBS his clothesline, YAKUZA KICKS him down, and then goes back to Finn. Gallows pump handles and scoops for the CLIFFHANGER! Cover, TWO!! Finn survives but Karl tags in. Gallows fireman’s carries, Karl runs, but Priest distracts so Dom can trip up Karl!

Gallows CLOBBERS Priest out of the ring! But Finn rolls up Karl, and the Judgment Day ELIMINATES the Good Brothers!! But there’s no rest for the wicked, here come The Gold Standard & PRIMED Alexander!

Finn Balor & Damian Priest w/ Judgment Day VS Shelton Benjamin & Cedric Alexander!

The former Hurt Business hits the ring, Shelton goes out after Priest while Cedric DIVES onto Finn! Direct hit and Finn hits the desk! Cedric puts Finn in, then GAMANGIRIS, before he fires up and runs into the corner, forearm smash! Cedric whips corner to corner, runs in but Finn dodges! Roll up, TWO!! Finn runs, into a scoop and MICHINOKU DRIVER! Cover, TWO!! Dom & Rhea are worried but Cedric drags Finn over to tag Shelton. They mug Finn, and Shelton snap suplexes Finn! Cover, TWO! Shelton looms over Finn, drags him up and puts him in a corner. Finn fires hands back, throws body shots, then whips.

Shelton reverses to CLOBBER Finn! Rhea hears Kevin Patrick poking holes in Dom’s story, just like Miz, and she tells him to shut up. Dom says he did his time! Shelton tags Cedric, they mug Finn, and Cedric ROCKS Finn! Cover, TWO! Cedric clamps onto a chinlock and he grinds Finn down. Cedric lets off to PENALTY KICK! Cedric clamps the chinlock back on and he taunts, “Hi, Mami!” Rhea replies, “Hi, dick head!” Finn pulls Cedric’s hair but the ref counts. Cedric lets go, but he BLINDSIDE LARIATS Finn! Cedric dares “big boy” Priest to do something, and then he brings Finn over. Tag to Shelton and they mug Finn more.

Shelton brings Finn around, reels him in and brings him up, but Finn slips out of the bomb! Finn blocks the kick but not the DRAGON WHIP! Priest tags in, runs in, but into a GERMAN SUPLEX! Finn runs in, into a GERMAN SUPLEX! And then Priest stands up, into a GERMAN SUPLEX! Suplex Shelton fires up, runs in and KNEES Priest in the face! Tag to Cedric, he and Shelton set up, ATOMIC KNEE!! Cover, Finn breaks it! Shelton drags Finn up, throws him back out, and then he hurries back to his corner. Cedric CLOBBERS Priest, rains down elbows into Priest’s back, and then wraps on a bearhug.

Priest endures, Rhea coaches him, but she also warns Cedric. Fans rally, Priest fights up and throws elbows but Cedric ROCKS Priest! Priest knees low, whips , but Cedric handsprings! NEURALIZER! Cover, TWO!! Priest survives but Cedric keeps cool. Cedric drags Priest up but Priest ROCKS him! Cedric DROPKICKS Priest back! Cedric runs in but Priest choke grips! Finn sneaks the tag before the SOUTH OF HEAVEN CHOKE SLAM! Finn goes up, Priest CLOBBERS Shelton! COUP DE GRACE!! Cover, Judgment Day ELIMINATES Shelton & Cedric! But it’s time to “SHOOOOSH~! Shoosh, please!”

Finn Balor & Damian Priest w/ Judgment Day VS The Alpha Academy!

Chad Gable & his number one guy, Otis, head to the ring. Priest & Finn do their best to regroup and recover, but how will they fare? We’ll see, after the break!

Raw returns again and Finn BOOTS Gable from a corner! Finn runs to SLINGBLADE Gable down! Tag to Priest and he storms up on Gable to suplex, BROKEN ARROW! Cover, TWO! Priest clamps on a chinlock and he grinds Gable down. Fans rally, chant “We Want Otis!” and Gable fights up. Gable fights against Priest but he whips Gable away to the Judgment Day corner. Priest taunts Otis, then runs in to back elbow! Tag to Finn, snapmare to slingshot STOMP! Tag back to Priest, and Finn scoops Gable, BACKBREAKER LEG DROP! Cover, TWO! Dom is annoyed but Rhea is smirking as Priest drags Gable back up.

Priest mockingly holds out Gable’s hand to Otis, only to throw Gable out hard. Tag to Finn and he drags Gable up. Finn CHOPS Gable, the ref has to keep Otis back. Finn RAMS Gable into the apron! And then Finn puts Gable in, drops an elbow, and then digs his heel in while he flexes. Dom and Rhea cheer Finn on and Finn clamps onto a chinlock. Gable endures but fans rally up. Gable fights up, but Finn knees low! Finn mocks Otis but Gable hits a BIG back suplex! Fans rally up, both men crawl, hot tags to Otis and Priest! Fans fire up as the tree trunk rallies on Priest! WRECKER ELBOW! Otis then hauls Priest up to whip and HEADBUTT!

Finn runs in, but into a scoop and SLAM! Otis runs in at Priest to clothesline! Otis whips Priest into Finn, then runs in to SPLASH them both! Finn flops out while Priest staggers and flops! Fans fire up and Gable shouts to Otis that it’s time! Otis unleashes the CATERPILLAR ELBOW! Fans are thunderous but Finn is up top! Finn leaps, but into a WORLD’S STRONGEST SLAM! Otis goes up, but Finn drags Gable down! Otis VADER BOMBS them both!! Otis realizes the mistake, but Priest SUPERKICKS, and DISCUS LARIATS Otis!! Cover, the Judgment Day ELIMINATES the Alpha Academy! But now medics check Finn!

Pearce is also ringside, and the medics don’t think Finn can continue. Finn refuses to be taken out of the match like this, but he can’t even stand! Rhea, Dom & Priest try to keep Finn in this but Pearce says if it’s the ribs, then Finn can’t fight. Priest says it’s no big deal but Finn still can’t stand! This will end up a forfeit but Priest wants to go solo! Well, it’s either a forfeit or a substitution. Dominik is here, dressed to compete, so that’s the only way they continue. Priest still insists Finn can go but Pearce says their only option is Dom. Priest concedes, and he tells Dom to not be soft. So then, Priest and Dom are taking on the STREET PROFITS!

Dominik Mysterio & Damian Priest w/ Judgment Day VS The Street Profits!

Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins are ready to finish Comeback, Season 2! One way or another, there will be #1 contenders to the Usos, so will it really be a sequel of the classics we saw from Profits VS Usos? Or is this the moment Dominik shows us just how “prison” changed him?

Raw returns once again and Dawkins is stomping Dom out! Dawkins yanks Dom’s flannel right off and throws it away! Tag to Ford, and the Profits whip to dropkick Dom down! Dom flounders to a corner and Ford storms up on him. Dom wants them to take it easy, but Ford says the “Jailbird” can take it. Ford stomps away on Dom! Rhea protests but Ford drags Dom up. Fans chant “You Deserve It!” as Ford CHOPS Dom! Tag to Dawkins, he CHOPS Dom! Dawkins brings Dom around, tags Ford, and the Profits fire off CHOP after CHOP and then stomp away! Rhea is furious but Ford drags Dom up.

Ford CLUBS Dom, drags him back up, and then he tags Dawkins. The Profits mug Dom with that big haymaker! Ford mocks Dom’s pain, Dawkins CLUBS Dom, and then Dawkins brings Dom out. Dom kicks and ROCKS and stomps Dawkins in return! Dom hammers away on Dawkins, then he whips corner to corner. Dawkins reverses, runs in and hits the CYCLONE SPLASH! Tag to Ford, the Profits mug Dom more, and Ford mocks Mami. Ford KICKS Dom in the side, then stomps away on Dom at the ropes! Cover, TWO!

Ford drags Dom up, wrenches his arm, and wrenches again. Tag to Dawkins, he ROCKS Dom then puts him in the corner. Dawkins TOSSES Dom corner to corner! Priest tags in, Ford wants in. Dawkins tags Ford and fans rally as Ford slingshots in. Ford does some rope-a-dope, but Priest knees low! Priest bumps Ford off buckles, ROCKS him with rights and body shots! Priest stomps a mudhole into Ford, lets off as the ref counts, and Priest shoves Dawkins! Dawkins gest up but the ref keeps him back, allowing Priest to CHOKE Ford! Rhea mocks Ford now, and Priest says it’s not so funny now. Priest ROCKS Ford, whips him corner to corner hard, and Ford bounces off buckles!

Priest taunts Ford, kicks him around, then whips him hard into another corner. Priest drags Ford up, ROCKS him with a forearm, and Ford drops to a knee! Priest whips Ford corner to corner but Ford reverses to ROCK Priest! Ford blocks a shot to ELBOW, and CHOP! Ford whips, Priest reverses but Ford leaps up and over! Ford rope-a-dopes, bobs ‘n’ weaves as Priest throws hands, then kicks! Priest blocks, but Ford avoids the shot to BACKHAND! Priest is furious as he tastes blood in his mouth! Ford smirks, he baits Priest in and dumps him out of the ring! Fans fire up but Dom sneaks in. Ford sees Dom and Dom gets scared!

Ford chases Dom out, they cat ‘n’ mouse in front of the announce desk, only for Priest to POUNCE Ford onto the desk! But Dawkins FLIES! Direct hit, and then Dawkins lands on his feet! Even Finn is shocked! Rhea is furious but the Profits are up as Raw goes to break.

Raw returns once more, and Priest ROCKS Dawkins! And ROCKS him again! Dawkins is on wobbly legs but Priest DECKS him! Cover, TWO!! Dawkins is still in this and Finn does his best to coach his team while holding ice to his ribs. Dom tags in, they mug Dawkins, and Dom drags Dawkins into a chinlock. Rhea smiles as she “gushes” on the apron over Dom grinding Dawkins down. Fans rally up and Dawkins fights back up, only for Dom to wrangle him back down! Dom grinds Dawkins but fans boo. Rhea is enjoying this but Dawkins fights up. Fans rally, Dawkins arm-drags free and he ROCKS Dom with big forearms!

Dawkins whips, Dom reverses but Dawkins sunset flips! TWO! Dom escapes, kicks low, and he CLUBS Dawkins down! Tag to Priest, Rhea cheers on “Dom-Dom,” and they mug Dawkins. Priest scoops Dawkins to SLAM, and Priest roars. Fans boo, Priest covers, TWO! Ford mocks Rhea with barking, but Priest tags Dom back in. They mug Dawkins as Finn says, “Do it for Judgment Day!” Dawkins fires body shots but Dom drop toeholds Dawkins onto ropes! Fans boo as Dom dials it up, but Dawkins CLOBBERS him!! Fans are thunderous as Dawkins and Dom both crawl for their corners. Fans chant “We Want the Smoke!” Hot tag to Ford!

Ford ROCKS Dom, GAMANGIRIS Priest, then goes up to CROSSBODY them both! Ford fires up and the fans are with him as he dropkicks Priest outta the ring! Ford clotheslines Dom, runs, then dodges to mule kick! Front kick! ENZIGURI! Ford hits a BIG back suplex! Ford kips up, fans fire up, Ford STANDING MOONSAULTS! Cover, TWO! Ford is annoyed as Dom hangs in there for his team. Rhea is worried, though, as she coaches Dom up. Ford tags Dawkins, they POUNCE GERMAN Dom!! Cover, TWO!! Dom survives and Rhea almost can’t breathe! Dawkins keeps his focus and he hobbles his way to Dom.

Dawkins drags Dom up and fireman’s carries, but Dom slips off! Tag to Priest, and he ROUNDHOUSES Dawkins! Ford runs in but Priest gets him for a COMPLETE SHOT! Dawkins runs in, Priest BOOTS then SUPERKICKS then DISCUS LARIATS!! Cover, TWO!! Dawkins is still in this and Rhea shouts about the count! Priest drags Dawkins up, fans rally for the Profits, and Priest springboards, into Dawkin’s HAYMAKER! Tag to Ford and he runs in to go up! PRiest choke grips, Dom tags in! SOUTH OF- RANA into an ENZIGURI! Dom is up top but Ford trips him up! Dawkins goes out and around to get Priest, but Priest TOSSES Dawkins!

Ford FLIES over the corner to take out Priest!!! Fans are thunderous as Ford shoves Dom down! And he comes in, FROM THE HEAVEN 450!! Cover, Priest drags Ford out!! Fans boo and Ford is furious! Priest rushes in, but Ford leaps to the apron! Priest hits steel steps!! Dom rolls Ford, feet on the ropes and Mami helping!! JUDGMENT DAY WINS!!

Winners: The Judgment Day, by pinfall (NEW #1 contenders to the Raw Tag Team Championships)

Dom’s questionable rap sheet or not, The Profits just got robbed! Dom was a last minute sub, but he was able to lie, cheat and steal this one for the team! But the USOS return! Jimmy & Jey hold up the red belts and ask who wants it! Will the Bloodline be able to survive facing their Judgment Day?


My Thoughts:

A really good Raw here, though something about each and every promo felt a little odd. I think it was just delivery, maybe there were some last minute changes. The Raw preview was pretty bare this morning, after all. I think Gargano’s injury coming up on top of losing AJ Styles to his ankle injury, as well as Rollins’ apparently knee injury, they just couldn’t get everything they wanted out of things. But I will say, a Tag Team Turmoil was a great way to adjust. That was an awesome main event with a lot of great overlap in the stories. We also got a good MizTV segment. I knew the twist was gonna be Dom didn’t actually serve anything resembling hard time, so I like that Miz got to be the one to break that news.

As such, I will say it was also clever to have Finn go down with bad ribs so that Dom would have to step up. And rather surprisingly, the Judgment Day wins. I expected the Profits winning, but then that would give us a repeat performance of Profits VS Usos and HHH has been good about freshening things up. It is a great move to give us Usos VS Judgment Day, which is Heel VS Heel on the surface, but fans will definitely get behind the Usos in that. Of course, Usos & Solo being here to go after Kevin was good stuff. Sami Zayn not being here is a smart move, because it means he’s staying safe for his match with Kevin on SmackDown.

I also like that they added another layer to Bloodline showing up by having Mustafa confront Ziggler on pulling out of Tag Team Turmoil. Ziggler obviously wanted to settle things with Solo, and it was good that Ali didn’t get involved. Solo wins clean in a great match, Solo really should be poised for a midcard title the closer we get to WrestleMania. Depending on what the plans are for those belts, I wouldn’t mind seeing Solo be a contender to the Intercontinental Championship. And given the detail that the tag title match is for only the Raw tag titles, maybe the Bloodline will become exclusively SmackDown superstars after April.

Kevin Owens also had a great promo with JBL & Corbin, but JBL is still leaning too hard into that “judgmental old man hating on the younger generation” stuff. Doing the traditional Heel stuff of mocking the local fans is fine, but it’s too Dan Lambert in AEW to call the current gen all “woke snowflakes” and what not. Kevin beating Corbin was great, though, I was just waiting for the Modern Day Wrestling God to finally lose and bring into question JBL’s assessment of Corbin. I feel like JBL should give Corbin a pep talk about how even he, the previous Wrestling God, lost from time to time. And then Corbin can step in it by saying JBL lost a lot, and that adds some tension to the relationship.

Theory had a very good promo with Seth Rollins and Bobby Lashley, especially with both of those guys being surprises here. They all want in on the Rumble but I would think we see a combination of those three fighting for the US title on the way to WrestleMania. Cody could still go for the US title, too, but obviously the story is he wants to be world champion. The video for him was good stuff, too, and we’ll definitely get a few more of these. Maybe Cody becomes a surprise entry in the Rumble, like for number 30 so that he has the least time in the match, and potentially the least people to deal with.

I also like the promo from MVP and Lashley. MVP doesn’t seem to have Omos at all right now in the HHH Era, and even if he still does, it’s a good move that MVP wants to reunite the Hurt Business. Lashley also rightfully isn’t for that at this moment, but that’s because they’re letting the US title story figure itself out. Good promo from Candice and Rhea to set up their match, very good match from them, and it makes sense Rhea wins. Rhea is going to have a strong showing in the Women’s Rumble, and it would totally work if she won. Rhea’s been doing great stuff even before Judgment Day, she really should be heading for the Raw Women’s title.

And speaking of, Bliss had a great promo that barged in on the Bianca Belair update. I knew from last week’s promo that while she claimed to be in charge, it was going to be exposed that that isn’t the case. Uncle Howdy makes his Raw debut, proving that his reach isn’t limited by the brand split, and this could really add a dimension to Alexa’s rematch with Bianca. Though I feel like that unfortunately makes Bianca a third wheel. Alexa’s struggle is going to be against Uncle Howdy’s influence, and she might even end up facing a form of herself since Howdy gave us a look at a playground. It’ll still be a great story overall, but it means Bianca “survives” this title feud rather than wins out.

My Score: 8.5/10


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Coverage

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

Prepare for Backlash!

Published

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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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