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The week in Pro Wrestling: Before and After Crown Jewel

This week in pro wrestling, a unique WWE week with shows falling before and after Crown Jewel. AEW crowns their first Tag Team Champions and starts doing some promos. NXT announces a big match and it will surely satisfy the crowd. NXT takes over Friday!


The Enterprise Center in St. Louis, Missouri housed this week’s Monday Night Raw on 10/28/19.

In Your Eyes

The final Raw preceding Crown Jewel began with “The Man” Becky Lynch submitting Kairi Sane, one half of the Women’s tag team champions, with the Disarmher in a quality opening bout.

The Kabuki Warriors literally “spit in the face” of their former manager, Paige, who arrived to great fanfare, before Asuka blinded her with the green mist. Paige was helped from the ring and Sane was then helped to a loss by Lynch after their bout.

Buddy Murphy defeated R-Truth in the second bout of the ring with a knee strike. Truth was distracted as the Singh Brothers were being chased for the 24/7 title and as Truth looked to regain the gold, taking his eyes off the prize in the ring led him to fall victim to Buddy Murphy’s knee strike. Murphy continues to amass wins on Raw, kudos to him.

Out Of Nowhere

Ricochet defeated Drew McIntyre via disqualification after another great bout. McIntyre was in charge for the majority of the match, but Ricochet mounted the comeback before “The Viper” Randy Orton struck with his patented RKO. Ric Flair celebrated with Orton and McIntyre before Crown jewel, despite the loss.

The Viking Raiders squashed two local talents in a non-title match with the Viking Experience. The raid continues.

New faces

Sin Cara appears to have a valet now and her name is Catalina. She is out to even the odds with the dubious Zelina Vega in the corner of Andrade. Catalina takes out Vega during their bout, but as the confusion ensues, Andrade scores a pin fall victory over Sin Cara yet again this week. It’s good to see Andrade winning and Sin Cara getting TV time and a story for sure.

In a match that was anything but “iconic”, The Iiconics take a quick loss to Natalya and Charlotte in a tag team bout. Charlotte removed Peyton Royce from the equation and Billie Kay tapped out to the Sharpshooter quick, fast and in a hurry.

Burn It Down

Seth Rollins defeated Erick Rowan in a Falls Count Anywhere match after the two beat the holy heck out of each other. Rollins has the Fiend at Crown Jewel this week and the end of this came when Rollins had somebody get into a forklift and trap Rowan beneath a series of pallets. He covered for the three count in this tuneup for his own Falls Count Anywhere match against Bray Wyatt this week.

The Only Club That Matters

Humberto Carillo gets a non-title opportunity against US Champion, AJ Styles, and a week after losing to Seth Rollins, Humberto tastes defeat again at the hands of the US Champ. He’s a very talented young man and has a tremendous offense, but it wasn’t enough to escape the Calf Crusher, which AJ applied to defeat him here. A post match beatdown ensued and The Street Profits hit the ring to aide Humberto.

Insult to Injury

Lana and Bobby Lashley stood tall to end the show on “The King’s Court” as their hi jinx ensued. Rusev eventually hit the ring after Lana aired their dirty laundry. Rusev removed his wedding band and the crowd went nuts, but then Lana attacked Rusev with a kendo stick. Lana had claimed that Rusev cheated on her earlier in the segment, which he vehemently denied and he eventually got the upper hand on Lashley, but after Lana’s distraction, Lashley laid him out with a well placed kick to the lower anatomy. This ended the show and Crown Jewel takes place early Friday.– Joel M

AEW Dyanamite:

This week in Dynamite, AEW started to some more promos during the show, for better or worse. A surprise return that may threaten Riho’s title reign. Legends arrive to present the Tag Team titles. Cross-over appeal from two matches. The inaugural AEW Tag Team Champions were crowned. This is Dynamite!

Hot start to the show. Surprise return. Weird promo and Legends arrive.

Adam Hangman Page vs Sammy Guevara. Page wins via Buckshot pin fall.

AEW continues their trend in starting off a show with great matches. With a sub story of “The Elite vs The Inner Circle” match. Page is showing why he is in top for and Sammy is a young star with nitroglycerin rockets on his back. These two worker absolutely crushed it for an opener. Page started get frustrated when he couldn’t put Sammy away, hearkening to his rough start in AEW. Guevara utilizing his speed and athletic ability to regain to match and fuel his ego, was all good stuff. Hangman finally got a win with flipping in the ring to hit a Buckshot.

These type of matches are going great for AEW, it has a long build to the overall story of The Elite vs The Inner Circle. Will these two have a proper feud? Maybe not, but it adds dynamics to the main feud story line.

Hikaru Shida vs Shanna. Shida wins via Running Knee Strike pin fall.

Hikaru makes her return tonight to face off little known Shanna. Shida was a butterfly’s eyelash in winning against AEW Women’s Champ Riho earlier this year. Now you may have been conditioned in thinking this will be a squash match. I am the same way, however AEW isn’t. Yes, Hikaru started off strong with numerous strikes, including a running knee off a steel chair. After a kick out, Shanna proves that she is no push over.

I had no clue who Shanna was before tonight, but I walked away a fan. The fight these ladies put on was a complete surprise. Great sells, close pin falls, and just great, crisp strikes were a theme in this match. I didn’t know that they were going at for ten minutes until it was announce! A couple of minutes after that, things went in to full gear. With another close pin fall on Shida, Hikaru lands a hard Running Knee to take out Shanna.

Title contention.

This win for Shida should place her in the top contender’s list for the Women’s title. With Shanna and Jamie Hayter entering the fold, AEW’s women’s division is looking really well rounded. Let’s hope they continue to add on.

Weird Brandi, just weird.

Brandi Rhodes has a promo were she is summoning something. It looks like Brandi is conjuring a female athlete to do her bidding. All these different eyes flash on the screen (I recognized Awesome Kong’s eye) and it ends. Again, weird. Why? Well I’m not opposed for Brandi having a separate character form husband Cody. However, this really didn’t feel like a natural progression. Now Brandi is a sorceress or whatever and has a conjuring hobby. Yeah, I thought this type of angle was left in Lucha Underground, and not in a sports oriented promotion.

Legends arrive and destroyed.

The legends known as Rock and Express made their way to show off the new shiny AEW Tag titles. Yet, Santana and Ortiz, now going as Proud and Powerful, destroyed the iconic duo. They even sent Ricky Morton THROUGH a part of a stage! Insane bumps for guys that are at age 63! This was well booked and the crowd finally turned on Santana and Ortiz. Proud and Powerful are now free to be heels, not the anti-hero heels, but full on dastardly heels.

Cross-over appeal matches. Cody and Jericho contract signing. Jon Moxley.. Promo God.

 Best Friends/Orange Cassidy vs John Silver/Alex Reynolds/QT Marshall. Best Friends wins via Strong Zero pin fall.

Ok, here is one of two matches that attempted cross over appeal. In this match it was Rick and Morty themed. Interlocking one the most beloved tv shows presently. Also, you should know that this was a comedy match with Best Friends dressed as Rick and Morty. Nothing too special here just trying to lure Rick and Morty fans into watching pro wrestling. The biggest pop was reserved for of course, Orange Cassidy. The laid back (almost comatose) fighter came in to hit his Slacker Kicks. Think of them as really slow and low Super Kicks, then a Dropkick.

Cassidy popped up with a no hand kip up, with the ref awkwardly placing Cassidy’s sunglasses back on him. Then a no hands Tope Suicida Dive. Best Friends hits the Strong Zero for the win. This match did what it had to do. It gave the crowd a break from the serious tone of the show and provided some fun.

Chris Jericho is a master of the mind games.

Before the contract signing, commentator Tony Schiavone shares a story with Cody in a limo about his late father Dustin. This just felt so organic, like an old family friend telling the son about his father’s advice. Afterwards the contract signing took place on top the ramp. They both sign and then Jericho fakes a table flip. The master reinventing then states that this match is too big for that. Too big for Power Bombs through a table (wink-wink WWE). Chris then states that this is Cody’s biggest match since he was never a World Champion (again wink-wink WWE).

The brawl.

What follows after Jericho’s triumphant heel promo was Sammy Guevara turning on a remote camera in the parking lot. Showing Jack Hager dismantling Cody’s brother Dustin. After a the beating, Hager slams Dustin’s arm in the limo’s door. MJF and Cody run in for the save but are too late. Jericho in his David S. Pumkin jacket, lights up a cigar, reminiscent of what old school heels used to do. Chris Jerich yells “Happy Halloween!”

This was an art class of how to promo. The call backs Jericho instilled for his promo, the organic feeling Cody had with Schiavone beforehand, the classic yet brutally looking beat down. This promo had all the check boxes checked off.

The Elite vs Kip Sabian/The Hybrid 2. Kenny Omega wins via One-Winged Angel pin fall.

The second match of the night with cross-over appeal, was for more of a niche crowd. With Rick and Morty having a bigger presence in the present day. Kenny Omega opted to pull out his gamer card and his entrance had a Undertale theme. For those who do not know about Undertale, it’s video game with a very devoted cult following. After it was said and done, Omega came out dressed as the puzzle loving and very popular Sans. The Young Bucks came out as Ken and Ryu from Street Fighter. Told ya, very niche.

The action in the ring was expected from the Elite. However, The Hybrid 2 team of Angelico and Jack Evans finally got to shine and did Kip. Funny, how when you’re in a match with The Elite, you tend to be given time to shine. After a very entertaining match Omega hits the V-Trigger and then the One Wing Angel on Jack Evans for the win.

More building up for a feud.

Afterwards, Proud And Powerful attack the Young Bucks from the crowd. Kenny Omega rushes to their aid and helped stop the beating. Remember the slow over all feud between The Elite and The Inner Circle? Well there is another small dose of it.

Moxley. Jon Moxley, promo god.

The Librarian Peter Avalon came out for a promo, only to thanked by Moxley’s Paradigm Shift. Then the unstable one went a promo that lit up the crowd. Earlier on, Tony Kahn asks to see Jon in his office. Kahn informs that the Omega vs Moxley match will be unsanctioned. No rules, no disqualifications, weapons are fair game. However, the match will not count towards the win/loss record. This infuriated Jon and confused Tony, as Kahn thought this is what he wanted. Kahn was wrong.

Back in the ring, Jon proclaims that AEW are trying to make him a freak show, someone who is incapable of having a sanctioned match. Moxley then states that he is “The baddest son of a bitch in this caage and there isn’t a person in the back that is going to prove me wrong”. Moxely also added that the unsanctioned match was made to protect Omega’s win/loss record and AEW can take that record and shove it.. you know where.

Moxley’s message.

Jon the ends it with that AEW “better be careful what you wish for”.. “because Omega’s blood in going to be on your hands”. This is exactly what Jon Moxely/Dean Ambrose was not allow to do. Come off the cuffs and cut a promo where no one was safe. Every week, Jon proves that his best work is not constricted to what is thought to be wanted. Moxley just gives us what he wants to give and love every second of it.

Inaugural AEW Tag Team Champion.

SCU vs Lucha Bros. Scorpio Sky wins via roll up pin fall.

In what was to be the pinnacle of the Tag Team Tournament, ended with a whimper. Don’t get me wrong, this was a very entertaining match full of Lucha Bros spots and SCU defying death. It was that ending. Justin Roberts opens the match like a ring announcing genius. I chuckled when Justin said “THIS.. IS.. YOUR MAIN EVENT!”, not happy with the crowd response, Roberts  stated it again to get the crowd reaction he wanted. Well played sir.

The match is underway, with Frankie Kazarian fueled with anger towards Pentagon Jr’s attack on Christopher Daniels week ago. The Lucha Bros regain with Fenix running the top rope punt. This the type of match we are going get. Action packed, don’t mind the non tags, just enjoy it. Frankie took a nasty bump, as he went for a top rope Hurricanrana from the inside to outside on Fenix. Kazarian’s neck and back of his head took a nasty smack on the ground. The type that ends careers, thankfully Frankie seemed fine and continued on.

The ending was quick flashes of rapid action. Scorpio Sky is Super Kicked, Body Splashed, then put in a Spiked Package Power Bomb. However, Frankie comes in for a distraction and Scorpio rolls up Fenix for the title.


Umm, yeah. This prestige tournament ended in a no flare roll up. For all the building of the tournament like Private Party upsetting Young Bucks, SCU losing a member and shoe but still wins. To the beating Jungle Boy and Marko Stunt took but never gave up, all of it was great stuff. To end it with a sloppy roll up just makes the whole thing an after thought.

Final thoughts.

AEW finally gave some promos to much of the pleasure of people who like them. Some were straight fire like Moxley and Jericho. Others were duds, like Brandi Rhodes. Whether we need 30 mins of promos explaining an angle or a gimmick is up for debate. However, it seems AEW is somewhat listening and is providing some, even experimenting on some. This is probably the most above average show. – David G


After weeks of slowly intermingling feuds, all of the pieces really began coming together this week for TakeOver Wargames on November 23. General manager William Regal officially announced the 1st ever Women’s Wargames match, and the closing moments of the show seemingly set the stage for the Men’s match.

Women go to War

This week’s show kicked off with a performance by someone named Poppy. After doing one song just for fun she used her second song to play Io Shirai to the ring for her match against rival Candice leRae. One of the interesting anomalies within the Full Sail Arena is that regardless of face/heel alignment, the regular crowd respects talent. That results in situations like this match where they were split and evenly cheering both women. In most cases, this would be seen as a bad thing, but for whatever reason it just works here.

LeRae suffered a bloody nose within the first third of the match, but fought on valiantly to the end. That end came about thanks to a chair Shirai introduced to the ring. The ref stopped her from actually using it but it remained in the ring. When LeRae went for a moonsault, Shirai rolled out of the way causing her foe to land upon the chair. This was enough for Io to grab a quick pin for the victory. When she tried to follow up with a post match beating Rhea Ripley made the save.

Tegan Nox and Dakota Kai go to war.

Later in the night one of the week’s featured matches saw best friends Tegan Nox and Dakota Kai teaming up for a shot at the Women’s Tag Titles currently held by the Kabuki Warriors. As much as I enjoy the new attitude from the champs, I wish that, like Io Shirai, they had adopted new music with their heel turn. At the very least, they should use only Asuka’s music. It has an intensity that works for a heel or a face while Sane’s music just feels too “good.” Not to mention the mix of the two has never really felt all that cohesive.

This was a solid match between a quartet of talented international stars. Nox, who is still clearly being built up as something special, tried for one of her signature Shining Wizards at one point, but Asuka countered it into a knee bar. The finish saw Kai taking green mist to the face followed by an Insane Elbow for the pin.

NXT melee.

Post match Shayna was out with her Horsewomen to rub the loss in the challengers’ faces, but an angry Nox went on the attack first. The 3 on one odds quickly overcame the rising star and she was being set up to have her arm broken when Rhea Ripley once again showed up. This time, however, she was attacked from behind by Shirai who in turn was attacked by LeRae and also Belair. Soon the melee involved most of the NXT Women’s locker room.

Regal broke up the chaos by announcing the Wargames match, and we were told later in the show that Ripley and Baszler would serve as the captains of their respective teams. Based on who was on which sides at the end of the brawl it seems likely Baszler will be joined by Shafir, Duke, Shirai, and Belair. Ripley’s team looks likely to be Nox, Kai, and LeRae with one more spot to be filled. My guess is that either Mia Yim gets that spot or Ripley calls in someone she respects from UK such as Toni Storm (who hasn’t been seen anywhere since dropping the UK title to Kay Lee Ray back in Cardiff).

New Fire.

Finn Balor gave a short but excellent promo following up on his attack of Johnny Gargano last week. As a long time fan of Balor I was excited to see how fired up and engaged he was in this new attitude. It’s clear that things had grown stale and uninspiring for him towards the end of his Smackdown run and that his recent time off genuinely helped. He called out Gargano, and with so much of Takeover going to TWO Wargames matches this pair will likely provide the standout singles match of the show.

Shane Thorne and Bronson Reed met again, and I’m not sure what they’re doing with these two. Thorne won their 1st match while he was on a bit of a streak against a series of relatively new NXT talents. Meanwhile Reed has, somewhat surprisingly, been on more of a losing streak since his elimination from the Breakout Tournament. In all honesty, neither of these men could really afford a loss right now and should probably not have been facing one another this week. However, it was Reed who got the win, and Thorne’s promising run has seemingly been buried for good at this point.

Ongoing feud.

Tyler Bate and Cameron Grimes met in the ring to follow up on their encounter from last week. These two young stars had amazing chemistry and I would love to see a full series of matches between them. The blend of styles was a lot of fun and both came out looking great. Grimes eventually picked up the victory thanks to distraction from Killian Dain who also attacked Bate after the match to send a message to his friend Pete Dunne. Dain vs Dunne could also be a solid addition to the Takeover card, but I have a feeling Damian Priest might also be added to that mix when he and Dunne fight next week.

Men go to War

The main event saw Keith Lee enlisting his friend Matt Riddle for a non-title match against the current NXT Tag Team Champions Bobby Fish & Kyle O’Reilly. This may seem like hyperbole, but none of these men seem capable of having a bad match, and this one delivered as much as it could have given the fact that it mostly existed for the post match moment.

After Undisputed Era picked up the victory with help from Cole and Strong on the outside, Lee and Riddle were joined in the ring by Ciampa. He spoke again to his beloved NXT title belt  saying, “Goldie, you’ll have to wait, because Daddy’s going to war.” Although not yet officially announced, this choice of words seemingly sets up the Men’s Wargames match. 1st thought is that will be Undisputed Era taking on the team of Ciampa, Riddle, Lee, and either Dijakovic or Velveteen Dream (depending on his health status). ~Jason M.


Having seemingly been running in place for a few weeks the UK black and gold are finally moving forward with some new stories and new rivalries. First up we check in on the women’s division.

New Friends, New Foes

Following up on a recent backstage scene which saw Piper Niven enlisting the aid of her former rival Rhea Ripley in taking down the thorn in both of their sides that is Jinny and her enforcer Jazzy gabert, those 4 women met in a solid tag match to kick off the show. It was a competitive match, and Niven and Ripley worked surprisingly well as a tandem. In fact, they worked so well that I wouldn’t mind revisiting this pairing down the road in a chase for the Women’s Tag Titles. Ripley and Niven were victorious and exchanged respect after the match. Might Piper be someone Rhea could call on for Wargames?

Later in the show Killer Kelly returned after 4 months of injury and followed Isla Dawn into a locker room to “pick a fight.” We didn’t get a follow up on that situation before the close of the show, but we did get an in ring promo from UK Women’s Champion Kay Lee Ray. After running down former champ Toni Storm who has pretty much disappeared since dropping the title, KLR moved on to Xia Brookside. A program between the champ and the people’s favorite underdog seems to be the next title feud.

A Tale of Two Debuts

This show has a history of giving unreasonably strong introductions to new talent who are then booked primarily in an enhancement role, so it’s often difficult to tell the difference between new stars and new jobbers. This episode MAY have given us one of each.

First up was Spanish wrestler A-Kid, a man Tyler Bate name dropped during a recent interview. He was going up against NXT’s favorite welcome wagon Kassius Ohno. A-Kid gave a pretty good showing in his first match and even picked up a surprise win via count out. This did not sit well with Ohno of course and the Kid found himself locked in an Ohno Clutch. Tyler Bate made the save, and it’s unclear if this set up a new star in A-Kid or merely kicked off a rivalry between Ohno and Bate.

Later on “Big Wavy” Roy Johnson took on Joseph Conners in a prime example of overly hyped enhancement. The announcers talked about how Johnson had been in the 1st UK tournament 3 years ago, but he clearly didn’t make a huge impression as I don’t even remember the man. His role here was to continue Conners’ streak of momentum building victories. They’ve yet to give us a hint of what Conners is being built for, but he’s on a decent roll at the moment.

Whose Kingdom is it?

Gallus cut a promo outside continuing to taunt Imperium. Joe Coffey returns to action next week, and has his sights set on more gold for “his kingdom.” Also next week the inaugural UK Tag Champions Grizzled Young Veterans will be in action against the team who took those titles from them South Wales Subculture.

That brings us to the main event which saw an interesting clash of styles between Bomber Dave Mastiff and the Irish Ace Jordan Devlin. Bomber clearly had the size and strength advantage, but Devlin used his wits and creativity to neutralize those differences. Ultimately it was the Ace who got the win and looked quite strong. I have to wonder why so many heels are being built so strongly right now when the championship is also held by a heel, but somehow they make it work most of the time.

Make a decision

Last but certainly not least we were shown a scene of Alexander Wolfe and Ilja Dragunov trading tense words backstage. Wolfe ended the conversation saying that Ilja needs to “make a decision.” It seems clear from the context that the young Russian has been offered a position within Imperium, but if he’s not with them then they’ll definitely be against him. ~Jason M.

Friday Night SmackDown:

In a peculiar position, WWE had to scramble to fill two hours of live television. Why? Because most of talent that worked the Crown Jewel PPV was left stranded there and was unable to make to the show. What did WWE have up their sleeve? An all out NXT invasion, that’s what. Let’s cut to the chase and find out how it all went down!

The Beast quits. SmackDown’s Women’s title match. Poor Sami Zayn.

Yeah, yeah The Beast is quitting.

One the few that made it back from Saudi Arabia (he probably has his own plane), BRROOCCKK LESSNARR opens the show. As I watched Paul Heyman do his thing, I noticed that Brock’s title is a replica with no side plates. Guess the title didn’t get to fly on Brock’s plane. Anyways, Heyman tells the crowd that Brock is embarrassed, not by Cain Velasquez. Lesnar is embarrassed by Rey Mysterio attacking him after the match.

So the only way to fix this is to have Brock destroy Rey. Not so simple, Paul states that Vince said Rey is an exclusive RAW talent and can not show up on SmackDown. Ok, let’s forget the time Rey did. So Heyman tells the crowd Brock quits and will hunt Rey down on RAW. What a cop out.. this felt like a rushed answer to not having the big titles on FSD. WWE, you can do better. By the way, HHH and Shawn Michaels were shown backstage as Brock and Heyman walked out. I wonder where this is going to lead to?

Bayley vs Nikki Cross for the SamckDown Women’s title. Bayley wins via Bayley to Belly pin fall. Oh, there’s more!

Let’s start off by quickly running through the match, because the aftermath is better. Nikki Croos was in complete control of the match. When Cross was about to hit The Purge, Sasha Banks distracted and Bayley hits the Bayley to Belly Suplex for the win. Good match, the two put on an entertaining bout. Here is were everyone lost their collective minds.

NXT Women’s champion Shana Baszler runs in and LAYS WASTE to all three women. That’s right, Sasha Banks? Poof, gone. Nikki Cross? Thanks for coming, gone. SmackDown Women’s champ Bayley, cute belt… Shana doesn’s care, buh-bye. Baszler became the ultimate wrecking machine and the crowd gobbled it up like a turkey getting fatten up for Thanksgiving.

Sami should really stop talking.

Sami Zayn runs his mouth about NXT should be careful on were they stick their noses at. Shortly he is confronted by the Keith Lee and Matt Riddle. The high flyer who shouldn’t be able to fly and The King of Bros. The duo simply does what WWE likes to do to Sami, bury him. Zayn gets hit with the Final Flash, Bro-demic, and Lee’s Doomsault. I get it, put eyes on these two awesome talents. However, can Sami get a break? This guy is too talented to be a main show jobber.

Miz TV and special guest. Daniel Bryan asks for a fight. Fire and Desire gets snuffed.

Miz TV new special guest. Tommaso Ciampa vs Miz. Tommaso wins via Fairy Tale Ending pin fall.

The Miz goes on about Bray Wyatt’s Universal Championship win at Crown Jewel. However, since the champ is still stranded in Saudi Arabia, Miz talks up NXT presence on the show. Enter Tommy Entertainer. A quick verbal exchange leads to a fight.

This fight was great, Tommaso quickly gaining control of the bout. Yet The A-Lister will not go down fighting, targeting Ciampa’s reconstructed knee. Alas, it was not enough. Ciampa hits the Fairy Tale Ending for the pin fall. Umm, hey… NXT IS TAKING OVER SMACKDOWN!! What is going on?!

Daniel Bryan gets his fight.

The Planet’s Champion runs into HHH and Shawn Michaels backstage and is looking for a fight. After teasing a fight with HHH and Shawn. We get our answer, ADAM COLE BAY BAY! I mean, can I fly out there right now to see this live?!?! Seriously, two of the best wrestlers are going to go at it for the first time and for the NXT title? I’m popping my popcorn right now.

Rhea Ripley/Tegan Nox vs Fire and Desire. Rhea wins via Inverted Cloverleaf submission.

Wait, this was supposed to be Fire and Desire vs Carmella/Dana Brooke, what happened? The E-S-T, Bianca Bellair happened. Bianca took out both Brooke and Carmella backstage. Military Pressing Carmella and dusting off her hands in the process. Leading to Rhea and Tegan to announce that they are taking their places. The match was short and sweet, in NXT’s favor. After Nox hits the Shiniest Wizard, the towering Ripley locks in an Inverted Cloverleaf on Mandy Rosse. Suspending Rose in the air while she tapped out. NXT IS TAKING OVER!!

ADAM COLE VS DANIEL BRYAN!!!!!!!! Kinda of a big deal. HHH fires the first volley.

Adam Cole vs Daniel Bryan for the NXT Championship. Cole retains via Panama Sunrise to Last Shot pin fall.

HHH and Shawn Michaels make their way to ringside to see this match up close. Stephanie McMahon and HHH’s wife recaps the historic, yet flawed first ever women’s match in Saudi Arabia.

Soon afterwards, we just get pro wrestling nirvana. A gift from Daniel Bryan and Adam Cole. I really can’t go into words about this match, because it will not do it justice. I implore you to find it on the vast information highway we call the internet to see it. You are welcome. The entire mixture of Cole and Bryan crafting a story in the ring, while HHH and Shawn look on was amazing.

Quick history.

Quick backround, Michaels trained Daniel Bryan. Daniel Bryan became the poster boy for fighting against a HHH like regime and won. Now, after retiring and coming back, Bryan has to face off against Cole. Adam is HHH/Michaels newest chosen one. The action was superb, the near falls grasp at your breath, and the finish was surprising. Cole won clean, no interference, no gimmicks, none of that. Just a clean Panama Sunrise o Last Shot pin fall for the NXT Championship.

HHH shoots first.

After the win by Cole, HHH gathers his NXT roster in ring. HHH states that RAW and SmackDown have pick a fight and he built an army. An army of blood and family for a fight. This is HHH’s fight, this is HHH’s ring, HHH fired the first shot, and they are N….X…..T!!!


I am still in awe what I saw! This is probably the BEST SmackDown I have seen in YEARS!! I mean close to a decade! The whole Saudi Arabia debacle forced WWE to play hand that they may have never done. Guess what, it was golden. I really hope WWE sees the reaction from their fans and keep the future shows this loose on scripting. WWE proves that they can be their best, when their backs are against the wall. BEST SMACKDOWN in a LONG time!-David G

205 Live:

I’ve been saying that 205 Live has been on “Death’s door” for a few weeks now. However, after NXT’s invasion of SmackDown and now tonight’s 205 Live show. I do not know what to think. An action packed hour filled with three great matches. Let’s dive in right now!

Isaiah Swerve Scott vs Ariya Daivari. Swerve wins via Killshot (My coined name) for the pin fall.

The feud between these two continues and we should be happy it does. Two great talents putting on a great match. Swerve aka Shane Strickland aka KillShot from Lucha Underground is making a name for himself on 205 Live. Daivari isn’t doing too bad himself. The duo has great chemistry, and seems like a WWE like launching pad match for Swerve. Isaiah Scott valiant fights off Ariya and hits The Killshot (again, my own name for it, since it hasn’t been named yet)for the pin fall.

Gentleman Jack Gallagher vs Ray Jazikoff. Gallagher wins via Corner Dropkick pin fall.

One my personal favorites on 205 Live, Jack “I’m Mary Poppins Y’all” Gallagher takes on a relitive unknown. In which seemed like a building up match for Gallagher, since he has been wasted on the program. Jack hits a hard head butt to the gut of Jazikoff, before ending it with a a Running Corner Dropkick for the pin fall. Again, I do stress that Jack deserves better for his talent. Hopefully he can find a spot on NXT to shine.

Lio Rush vs Raul Mendoza. Lio Rush wins via Final Hour Splash for pin fall.

The re-energized and Cruiserweight Champion, Lio Rush took on up-comer Raul. Mendoza took it to Tony Neese last week and earned this non title match. All to see if Raul has what it takes to take on the champ. Boy does he ever has what it takes! The match was a spectacle of underdog vs underdog. I know, kind of confusing.

However both men seemed to be underdogs. Lio winning the title out of nowhere and Raul being an unknown but in a match with the champion. The duo displayed a great match with both looking great. This maybe Mendoza’s breakout match and Lio solidifying his title presence. After Lio hits a Springboard Stunner, Rush lands his Final Hour Splash for the win. Rush may have retain the title, but both men won.-David G


  • It was revealed in ads during the Crown Jewel broadcast that NXT will be included in Survivor Series this year. Details are unknown at this point, but the usual brand vs brand nature of the show would seemingly indicate triple threat matches that feature Raw vs Smackdown vs NXT.
  • Reported was that most of the performers that worked the Crown Jewel PPV, were left stranded in Saudi Arabia . Leaving WWE to patch work a live Friday Night SmackDown show… and yes it did work.


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