This week in pro wrestling, TakeOver aftermath and the AEW cage match. What will be the fallout from one of the best TakeOver ever? Will Cody Rhodes win his latest stipulation for Revolution? Is this truly the end of Matt Hardy in the WWE?
President’s Day Produces Solid Raw go home show for Super Showdown
The Angel Of The Winds Arena in Everett, WA hosted the longest running weekly episodic show’s broadcast this week on 2/17/20.
The execution of Matt Hardy
As it relates to “freeing the delete”, I can think of no better title for the opening segment.
Randy Orton continues his reign of terror and as they look to fill the void before the imminent return of Edge, it’s Matt Hardy once again coming to the defense of a man he once wished death upon. Hardy’s neck is braced after Orton’s assault last week and Hardy cuts a fiery promo about those events to begin.
Orton eventually goes on the assault and he hits an RKO on Hardy as Hardy exclaims for Randy to “finish him”. Orton has a fleeting moment where he shows remorse, but he places Hardy’s neck on the ring steps, brandishing a steel chair. He whispers that “he’s sorry” and he hoists the chair high before delivering the kill-shot.
After a break, Hardy is taken out on a gurney, presumably for the final time before he appears in a rival promotion to aide a stable there. Randy Orton continues to sell tickets, even as his career is winding down. He has a gift and we saw that on display again tonight.
Aleister Black defeats Erick Rowan is our first in-ring match of the night. This one was solid, because there is always the chance that Black might taste defeat as he competes against other stars they are looking to push.
Such was not the case here and it was Rowan who tasted defeat after eating two Black Mass Kicks before eating the pin fall. Black will surely be featured in the next few months and he might be an early favorite to win the Money in The Bank match. We shall see.
The Queen Accepts the Challenge
Charlotte Flair has the gift of gab and she cuts a tremendous promo on Rhea Ripley, telling the NXT Women’s champion that she accepts her challenge for a title match at Wrestlemania.
Clips are shown of where Flair attacked Ripley after she bested the great young talent Bianca Belair and at Takeover she officially accepted the match. She continues in the ring tonight by saying Ripley sure has great audacity showing up on her show and laying out a challenge.
Flair says she set the table for what Ripley has at NXT now and then she tells her that pride comes before a fall and everyone is the next big thing, until they’re not. That line was fantastic. She plans to humble Ripley at ‘Mania. That match has the potential to steal the show.
Riddick Moss steals a victory over Mojo Rawley and R-Truth to retain the 24/7 title as he catches Rawley with a La Magistral Cradle after Truth was dumped from the ring after hitting a five knuckle shuffle on Rawley. This was filler and nothing more.
Drew McIntyre comes out and cuts another fantastic promo and he even makes fun of everyone pointing at the ‘Mania sign. He says Charlotte Flair did it, so he basically has the entire crowd do it with him. Excellent.
This brings out Paul Heyman who teases an appearance from Brock Lesnar, but we know better. McIntyre and Heyman have words and Drew states Paul can say Brock’s name over and over while they’re together, but after he kicks off Lesnar’s head at ‘Mania, they’ll be crying together.
This leads to Heyman introducing MVP, who speaks about being slighted by McIntyre last week after MVP offered to manage him.
A match follows and McIntyre makes short work of the veteran, catching him with a Future Shock DDT and then after the countdown, the Claymore Kick for the victory.
They recap the visual of Shayna Baszler making her Raw debut by biting Becky Lynch on the neck and tearing the flesh off.
“The Man” makes her appearance and Lynch runs down her recent accolades and she name drops Rousey, Asuka, Natalya, Charlotte, Banks, saying that she took them down because she had too but she’s coming after Shayna because she wants too.
Lynch spoke rather tough but then Baszler appeared on the video wall, calm and collected. She says the winner of the Elimination Chamber gets a title match and she plans on winning to get an opportunity against Lynch at ‘Mania.
She says that she did what she did last week after a spur of the moment decision and that was unplanned. Imagine when she does plan something for Becky and she states that she’s gonna tear the living you know what out of Becky and she says the word. Lynch is looking forward to it.
Tag Team Action
There’s a backstage segment that sets the table for a tag match that pits Rusev/Humberto Carrillo against Bobby Lashley/Angel Garza, We get a fun segment backstage with Garza and Vega talking to Lashley and Lana before the match.
This was entertaining and we did have the opportunity to see the young stars in action. Angel Garza has all the potential to be a huge star and Carrillo is very entertaining in the ring, but he’s very vanilla and he hasn’t any personality. If he doesn’t develop a character, he’s going to end up like other athletic talents without any development.
Rusev made the hot tag and was a house of fire, but it was Garza who trapped him in a roll-up to secure the three count for the heels. Garza is celebrating, but Rusev attacks him frantically, taking a measure of revenge. Lashley and Lana watch gleefully from atop the ramp as we head to a break.
Kairi Sane defeats Natalya via count out as the Kabuki warriors build momentum back on their side after Asuka’s recent losses to Becky Lynch. Natalya is dumped from the ring and it allowed Asuka an opportunity to sneak attack while Sane had the ref distracted.
Nattie can’t beat the ten count and that’s all she wrote.
“The Monday Night Messiah” Seth Rollins takes us to church in the ring as he presents the gospel according to him while he’s flanked by the AoP and his tag team partner, Murphy.
Rollins is getting unmercifully booed and this character gets better and better each week. This eventually leads to Kevin Owens and the Viking Raiders coming out and once again interrupting the segment. A frustrated Rollins backstage sets the main event up as it’ll be Murphy and the AoP against the faces.
We have the pleasure of bearing witness to the return of AJ Styles after his injury at the Royal Rumble.
AJ says he might be the greatest star in any era and he runs down a litany of talent from years past, including a dig at Sting’s soul patch.
Styles says that he’s glad to be back and after he declares his dominance at Super Showdown, but before he can finish, Ricochet comes out to interrupt. Ricochet says he’s glad that AJ is back because he wants to challenge him here tonight. The OC laugh when Ricochet says that he will beat Brock Lesnar for the title at Super Showdown.
Karl Anderson steps up in Style’s place and we have a match.
Karl Anderson gives a good account of himself and he had an opportunity after he escapes from a 630 splash attempt. Ricochet recovers however and he hits a superkick followed by the Recoil for the victory and he heads towards a title match against Brock Lesnar in a few days.
The main event goes off without a hitch and as expected, we get a great match once again to close the show out during the Heyman era.
Kevin Owens is about to secure the victory for his team following a Stunner, but Seth Rollins breaks up the pin fall and the faces come away with a DQ victory. The numbers game is too strong as the heels work over the faces until the broadcast ends with surprising aide from the Street Profits!
Rollins throws a temper tantrum atop the ramp as the Profits receive a chorus of cheers from the crowd and we end the broadcast on that note.
This week on Dynamite, Cody will have to win on his next stipulation from MJF. Who will win the right to challenge Kenny Omega and Hangman Page for the tag team titles? Does new AEW women’s champion, Nyla Rose have a contender? How will a one-eyed Jon Moxley fair against a monster and Chris Jericho mercenary, Jeff Cobb? Let’s dive in because, this is Dynamite!
Tag team Battle Royal. Great promo from Rose. Moxley fights a monster.
Young Bucks vs Santana/Ortiz vs Jurassic Express vs The Butcher/Blade vs Best Friends vs Hybrid2 vs SCU vs Dark Order vs Private Party vs The Stronghearts. Matt Jackson wins via clothesline to Santana over the ropes for the win.
What a way to start out tonight’s show! In this match, both members of a tag team must be tossed over the top rope to be eliminated. The rules made for a fun yet predictable match. Who else should face off the current tag team title holders of Omega/Page? Well, fellow Elite members The Young Bucks, of course! However, the match did give spotlights to teams that didn’t get a spotlight. Stronghearts, Hybrid2, Butcher/Blade all had a time to do their thing.
However, this all a path for Elite members Young Bucks vs Kenny Omega and former Elite member Hangman to collide at Revolution. This may be the breaking point for Adam Hangman Page to fully turn heel. That being said.. take my money please!!
Shanna vs Kris Statlander. Statlander wins via Big Bang Theory pin fall.
This match only served one purpose, to remind the crowd about Kris Statlander and continue Britt Baker’s heel run. This time Baker was commentary, in which she did very well. The crowd was super hype from the last match and it showed for this one. Statlander is very over in AEW and the crowd, yet both ladies put on a good match. There was no clear runaway during the match, but everyone knew that AEW’s favorite alien had to win. Kris Statlander just did that and hit the Big Bang Theory for the win.
Afterwards, AEW aired a video package of Nyla Rose winning the AEW Women’s Championship. The entire set up felt like an answer to those that opposed Rose winning the title, like ex WWE star, Val Venis. It was a well out together package, displaying the roads and her power that led her to winning the title.
Rose then cut a fantastic promo as a heel, stating that she will be a “one-time champion”. As nobody will take the title off of her. Kris Statlander and Big Swole walk out to confront the statement and Rose walks to the back. I can not stress how great this promo was. It is something that was lacking for the AEW women’s division from the start.
Jon Moxley vs Jeff Cobb. Moxley wins via Inside Cradle pin fall.
Great match! This was pretty much a display on what Jeff Cobb can do. Yes, I am a fan of Jeff Cobb from the Lucha Underground days, but missed his Ring of Honor run. Whatever the case, Cobb is a beast.. an athletic beast. Some may say that this should have been a double disqualification or have Jeff win, but I disagree. Cobb made his intentions for wrestling for NJPW and to have Moxley lose clean or not win against Jeff may hurt Jon’s stock. If Cobb signed with AEW, we have might have seen Jeff get a win or a double disqualification.. but that is just my opinion.
After the sneaky pin by Moxley, The Inner Circle quickly attack Jon. Dustin Rhodes come out for the save, but is quickly out manned. Then the lights cut out.. and Darby Allin returns! Allin rolls down the ramp on his skateboard and proceeds to even out the fight. Darby returns the favor to the Inner Circle, using his skateboard as a weapon and a shield, good stuff. Aside from keeping Moxley strong and showcasing Jeff Cobb to the AEW crowd, this served little purpose to further the Moxley vs Jericho story-line.
Champions vs brothers. The last stipulation for Cody.
Kenny Omega/Adam Hangman Page vs The Lucha Bros for the AEW Tag Team title. Omega/Page retain via Buckshot Lariat/V-Trigger pin fall.
When I saw this matched booked, I went to grab the popcorn. It’s always a great match when these four guys meet up. The action was fast as you would expect. What you may not expect was that even though we all knew the winner of the match, the four men made for almost forget the planned outcome. Even when thongs where “settling down”, the action seemed to pick up faster than before. Fenix again shines with his in ring abilities and his brother Pentagon displays his charisma.
In the closing seconds, Page blind tags in Omega who knee was worked over by the Bros, and the champs hit a Buckshot Lariat/V-Trigger combo for the win. Shortly after the win The Young Bucks come out to help up Omega to his feet and celebrate. Adam again feels awkward celebrating with future opponents, even if they are/were friends. So Hangman does what Hangman does, goes into the crowd to drink beers with them. Did I tell you that I can’t wait for these four guys to go at?
Cody vs Warlow in a Steel Cage, the last stipulation from MJF. Cody wins via Moonsault fro the top of the cage pin fall.
Um, yeah.. I wrote that correctly. Cody Moonsaulted from atop of the cage. This something I was not totally prepared for, as Cody is a very technical mat wrestler and not a high flyer. Wardlow has his first match in AEW, after spending months of buildup as MJF’s enforcer. The big man did not disappoint. What also did not disappoint was Cody entering the arena. The American Nightmare was accompanied by the family coach Arn Anderson and his wife Brandi. Furthering the point that Brandi is done with The Nightmare Collective.
Quickly in the match Wardlow just simply beats down Cody like a rag doll. Which is really impressive, since Cody is not a small guy by any means. Cody is busted open fairly early in the match, donning the crimson mask did not slow The American Nightmare at all. One the heroes of the match was Four Horseman member, Arn Anderson.
Twice MJF attempted heelish tactics and was sent off by Arn. The first time was that MJF tried to tap into the rivalry between Cody’s father Dusty and Arn. Anderson then slams the cage door into MJF’s skull. The second time was when MJF was going to punch Brandi in the face! Hey, we didn’t like The Nightmare Collective angle, but we love Brandi.. Arn tosses MJF over the railing saving her.
Back in the ring things heated up as Cody thwarted the use of MJF’s ring and later on hits a Cross Rhodes. Alas, that could only hold down Wardlow for two. Now seemingly throwing caution to the wind, Cody scales the cage. According the the commentators, the cage is 26 feet tall. Taller then WWE’s Hell In A Cell cage, which stands at 2o feet. The American Nightmare soars through the air with a Moonsault and for the win.
Big props to both men. One for Cody going out of usual comfort zone and the other for Wardlow perfectly catching Rhodes. Any slight hiccups by Wardlow and Cody could’ve been seriously injured. That shows big trust from Cody for choosing Wardlow for the spot. The entire feud between MJF and Cody has been booked fantastically. Now with all the stipulation met by Cody. The fans, especially myself, are clamoring on what Cody is going to get to do to MJF at Revolution. Did I mention take my money AEW, yet?-David G.
Takeover: Portland left us with one question – Why, Johnny, Why? Tonight on NXT, we look for answers! Plus, we have an NXT Cruiserweight Championship match, and the Dream/Strong rivalry continues to heat up!
Shock The System
After a video package highlighting Takeover: Portland plays, NXT Champion Adam Cole hits the ring with the rest of the Undisputed Era to remind us that the prophecy is still alive. Cole tells everyone he told us that “obsession will never beat destiny”.
Velveteen Dream’s likeness appears on the screen, with Dream talking about his match with Roderick Strong tonight. Dream dares Strong to leave the boys behind and fight him one on one, and to “be the man Marina always wanted him to be”. This rivalry comes to a head in our main even tonight!
NXT Cruiserweight Champion Jordan Devlin takes on #1 Contender Lio Rush in our opening bout. This match has a very old-school, late 90’s WCW feel, reminiscent of Dean Malenko vs. Rey Mysterio, with the difference in styles between Devlin and Rush.
Frenetic pacing to start the match, with Rush showcasing his speed advantage. Devlin’s strength takes over midway through, allowing him to take control. Great back and forth action from two of the best cruiserweights in the division!
The conclusion of the match comes when Rush goes up top to attempt the Final Hour, but the pool is empty. Devlin nails a wicked headbutt on Rush, then drops Rush with the Devlin Side suplex to retain the title!
Winner and Still NXT Cruiserweight Champion – Jordan Devlin
Amazing opener for NXT this week! Jordan Devlin continues to solidify himself in the division, and Lio Rush’s evolution is great. Rush was right when he said he isn’t the same guy we were used to seeing, and it showed in his match tonight. As I mentioned earlier, this definitely has the feel of the late 90’s WCW Cruiserweight Division, with varying styles of wrestlers who put on show-stealing performances.
The Rivalry Continues
Backstage, Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez are interviewed, talking about their relationship. Gonzalez talks about being looked over at the WWE PC, and how Tegan Nox couldn’t stand up for her friend Dakota. General Manager William Regal approaches, and tells Dakota that this rivalry isn’t over, and will continue in two weeks…inside a steel cage!
Very plain, very scripted promo from Gonzalez. She is obviously still very green, and not very adapt to cutting a good promo. However, I do like the idea of keeping the rivalry going, and inside a steel cage no less. Nox and Kai had a barnburner at Takeover, and have another chance to showcase their hatred for each other in two weeks!
Daddy’s Home… And He’s Not Happy
Austin Theory makes his way to the ring, but instead of his opponent coming out, we get Tommaso Ciampa. Clearly Ciampa is not happy about what happened at Takeover, and is here to address the actions of Johnny Gargano. Theory approaches Ciampa, “Not tonight, man. Not tonight”, states Ciampa. Theory backs away slowly.
Ciampa talks about how he should have seen this coming, but that he stopped listening to the instinctual voice in his head. All of the signs were there: the odd timing of a tag team reunion, Johnny having his back on his journey, and so on. Ciampa declares that there’s been one constant that goes hand in hand with himself and the NXT Championship, and that’s Johnny Gargano. “I’m not asking why. I know why. And Johnny knows why. If I want to get my life back, there can be no Johnny Gargano in NXT.”
Theory tries to interrupt Ciampa again, but Tommaso has had enough, and proceeds to beat the ever-living hell out of Austin. Ciampa punts Theory in the head, sending him outside, allowing Ciampa to toss Theory into the barricade NINE TIMES! Fantastic stuff as usual from the Sicilian Psychopath.
World’s Number One?
Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde team up to take on the Grizzled Young Veterans. I’ll keep this one brief because there isn’t much of a story to tell here. Zack Gibson and James Drake are back in NXT to show the world that they are the number one tag team. Even though they put up a decent fight, Mendoza and Wilde are no match for the GRRRRRRRRIZZLED Young Veterans.
Winners – Grizzled Young Veterans (Zack Gibson and James Drake)
As I said last week, it appears that we’ll be getting much more of GYV in NXT in the future, as they are here to establish themselves as the World’s Number One Tag Team. A fight with the Broserweights seems all but certain.
Pete Dunne and Matt Riddle are out to address the NXT Universe for the first time as NXT Tag Team Champions. Sounds like they partied a little too hard in Portland, as Riddle asks where the golf cart is, only for Dunne to let him know that it was impounded. But no one partied harder than “Cup”, the Dusty Classic trophy, who, according to Riddle, failed the WWE Wellness Exam and has been suspended for 30 days. Great stuff once again from the BROserweights.
Danny Burch and Oney Lorcan make their way to the ring to take on Dunne and Riddle in a non-title match, and boy is this a fun one. Normally, I would tell you to keep an eye out for Riddle getting the hot tag, but in this case, Pete Dunne is the one with the fiery offense out of the tag. Lots of back and forth action between both teams, with everyone having an opportunity to showcase their strengths. Whether that’s Dunne with his joint manipulation, Riddle with his explosive power, or Burch and Lorcan with their smash-mouth offense.
The chemistry between Dunne and Riddle is off the charts lately, as their transitional tags and tandem offense is comparable to a team that has been together for years. They work so well off of each other. Lorcan and Burch are always a fun team to watch, even though they’ve fallen down the ladder in recent months. Still, great showing from the Brit-Am Brawlers in a losing effort against the champs.
Winners – The BROserweights (Pete Dunne & Matt Riddle)
Dunne and Riddle celebrate amongst the NXT Universe after the match. Dunne looks ready to party!
Bask In His Glory
NXT North American Champion Keith Lee is out to talk about what’s next, but is quickly interrupted by NXT’s Finest, Kona Reeves. Lee looks nonplussed, and as Reeves goes to grab a microphone, Lee runs over him with a pounce, and tells the ref, “You can go ahead and ring the bell.” Bell rings, Big Bang Catastrophe from Lee, and the champ scores the pin.
Winner – Keith Lee
Lee stands triumphant in the ring, but is quickly cut off by Dominik Dijakovic, who comes out to say that he can’t move on from Lee. Dijakovic says that at Takeover, his back was too sore to hoist Lee up. But IF he had been able to pick up Lee, and IF he had been able to hit the Feast Your Eyes…
“If, if, if…” Lee interjects. “You can say ‘If’ all you want, but that doesn’t change the fact that I beat you. Every time we step into the ring together, the fans always chant the same thing…” Right on cue, the “FIGHT FOREVER” chants thunder through the Full Sail Arena. Lee tells Dijakovic that IF he can convince Regal to do it, they can do it again.
I feel like this only has one logical outcome: an Iron Man Match at Takeover: Tampa. These two heavyweights have been so evenly matched over the past year, with Lee having the slight edge with a 2-1-2 singles record against Dijakovic. The only way to wrap this rivalry up, and to find out who the ultimate winner is, is to let these two amazing athletes have 30 minutes to determine who’s best. I salivate at the idea.
The E-S-T Is Out For Payback
Kayden Carter and Chelsea Green are out for another showdown, but to be honest, this match doesn’t even matter. The pacing of the match was bad, the chemistry wasn’t there, and it was a slop fest. The big story of this match is the sudden appearance of Bianca Belair, who is out to address Charlotte Flair.
Belair does her best Kanye West, hitting the ring in the middle of the match, and telling Green and Carter, “Imma let you finish…” As Green looks on confused, Belair turns to the camera to call out Charlotte. “Now girl, I done told you you don’t come here! Now you put your hands on me, I want you here! It don’t matter if it’s here or there…. Charlotte Flair, I’m gonna’ whoop that ass!”
You know it’s bad when the best part of your match is a promo cut by someone who isn’t even involved in the match. Thankfully, the match ends shortly afterwards, with Chelesa Green dropping Kayden Carter with an inverted Unprettier.
Winner – Chelsea Green
Honestly, I had hoped to see Kayden pick up another sneaky victory over Chelsea. I keep wishing for “Crazy Chelsea” to show her face in NXT, but it looks like that idea may be on hold for now, as the Robert Stone Brand gets their first victory.
Dream On…Dream Over?
On paper, this match had the makings of a fantastic main event. Unfortunately, it failed miserably to live up to expectations. There were several spots during the match where spots were either missed or muffed badly. It’s hard to say whether it was made to look that way to show how personal and physical this rivalry is, or if it shows that Velveteen Dream is still rusty after being on the shelf for a few months.
There were some bright spots, however, as Dream got to work his mind games during the opening moments, and Roderick Strong showed us why he’s known as the “Messiah of the Backbreaker”. Once the momentum gets going, it turns out to be an OK match, with lots of back and forth action.
Velveteen Dream gets another personal shot at Roddy towards the end of the match, as Dream rips off his tearaway pants to show Marina Shafir’s likeness airbrushed on his wrestling tights. After Dream drops Strong with the Dream Valley Driver, he goes to the top to attempt the Purple Rainmaker, but the rest of Undisputed Era make their way out. Dream drops them with a flying splash to the outside, then gets back in the ring for another DVD to put Strong down and take the win.
Winner – Velveteen Dream
Undisputed Era jumps Dream immediately after the pinfall and leave him laying in the ring as the cameras fade to black to end the show. Obviously this isn’t the end of Dream vs. Strong. – Josh L.
Joe Coffey insists that payment is due, Joseph Connors wants to show that he is worth, and more on NXT UK!
Video package for Joe Coffey vs. Ilja Dragunov is shown at the start, with highlights from their story leading up to tonight.
Big Strong Boy
Tyler Bate and Joseph Connors collide in the opener, and what a match they had! Connors, an NXT UK OG, is out to show that he’s on the same level as the inaugural NXT UK Champion. Great back and forth action, with Bate showing his strength and agility, and Connors his determination and resolve.
After a drop toe hold on Bate, causing Tyler to fall face first into a steel chair, Connors rolls Bate back into the ring to go for the Don’t Look Down finish. Bate counters, hits the rebound clothesline, followed by Tyler Driver ’97 for the victory.
Winner – Tyler Bate
The more I watch Tyler Bate compete, the more I start to feel like he may be the most well-rounded wrestler under the entire WWE umbrella. He’s got it all: strength, agility, charisma, stamina, and resilience.
Title Match Set
Short backstage segment with NXT UK GM Johnny Saint and Sid Scala informing Walter and Dave Mastiff that they will face off for the NXT UK Championship in two weeks. Walter tells Mastiff that he’s the greatest heavyweight in Europe. No comments from Mastiff. This match will be a brawl.
Supernova Goes Pop
Noam Dar is out to take on Josh Morrell, a relative newcomer to NXT UK. Dar, being overly confident, underestimates the abilities of Morrell, who gets some decent offense in before Dar hits the Rock ‘N’ Rolla Enzuigiri for the win.
Winner – Noam Dar
Promising look for Morrell, who can be regarded as a potential breakout star in 2020.
What. A. Match! Ilja Dragunov and Joe Coffey put on a clinic in tonight’s main event! Both men got to show off their strength, with the story being that Coffey wants payback after Dragunov cost him the title at Blackpool, and Dragunov maintaining his Unbesiegbar (invincible) mentality.
The story in the ring was a thing of beauty, with Coffey working the right leg of Dragunov, and Ilja pushing through the pain, going as far as to hit a Coast To Coast dropkick on Coffey! After dodging All’s Better For The Bells, Dragunov lands the Moscow Torpedo to pick up the hard-fought victory.
Winner: Ilja Dragunov
The Gallus Boys hit the ring to go after Dragunov, who is standing his ground. Joe Coffey approaches Ilja, nodding his head and telling him that he won this one, and that they’re even now. Great show of respect from Coffey, even in defeat. – Josh L.
An Icon meets an Unsettling Force days before they do battle on Pay Per View.
The Gila River arena in Glendale, AZ played host to this week’s edition of Friday Night Smackdown on 2/21/20.
Eight Man Action
Jimmy and Jey Uso open the show talking about the team of John Morrison and The Miz running them down in the ring and on social media while they weren’t present last week.
They are hosting a superkick party and everyone is invited! This continues for a time and it eventually sets up an eight man tag match where the Usos and The New Day took on the team of John Morrison and The Miz and Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler.
After a pretty solid opener, the superkick party does in fact shut the joint down as Robert Roode eats two for his troubles, and a three count follows. This was fine and a good way to open the broadcast. Both shows tag team divisions need to be featured heavily and I’m a fan of in-ring action to begin a broadcast as it were.
Daniel Bryan is backstage and Drew Gulak offers up his assistance to the former world’s champion. Gulak states that he has studied the “Fiend” and Heath Slater? Okay. Slater hears his name and tells Bryan that he made his kids cry a few weeks back and this leads to a match schedule for later.
The Mandy Rose and Otis story-line continues this week as Mandy and Tucker have a back and forth over Otis running late and she states that she didn’t get a text from Otis.
Sonya Deville stumbles in and asks Mandy about having dinner with Dolph Ziggler and Mandy says it was fine, but she wanted to see where it went with Otis. This is obviously setting up a split between Mandy and Sonya and a match between Otis and Ziggler from the looks of things. We’ll find out sooner, rather than later.
Lacey Evans sits down with Renee Young and speaks at length about her history as a marine and the use of the term “nasty”. Evans states that it’s even a term of endearment. She states that she’ll win at the elimination chamber and she’ll head to ‘Mania and a title match. This was brutal to be honest. I’ll all for pushing new stars and Evans has potential, but “nasty” as a term of endearment? Come on writing team, you’re better than this.
Symphony Of Destruction
Elias and Braun Strowman defeat Shinsuke Nakamura and Cesaro in a “Symphony Of Destruction” match.
No, Dave Mustaine was not present for this one and apparently, strategic booking wasn’t either. I understand them wanting to blow off the feud between Strowman and Nakamura if they are moving in another direction, but what’s next?
Strowman won this by putting Nakamura through a piano with a powerslam and Elias put Cesaro through a table with an elbow. The crowd had fun with the match and seemed to enjoy it for what it is. They paid their hard earned money for the show and they seemed entertained here.
“King” Corbin cuts a promo backstage about being tired of seeing Roman Reigns on all the posters, signs and billboards and the what have you. At Super Showdown, he’s going to rake his face across the grating steel of the cage ad after he succeeds, he’ll be on all the advertisements.
You Can Look, But You Can’t Touch
Alexa Bliss hosts “A Moment Of Bliss” and she recaps Batista and the New World Order being inducted into the Hall of Fame. She then introduces the Bella Twins as the latest inductees.
They play to the crowd and talk about being pregnant a week apart, but then they talk about breaking down barriers in the ring. Daniel Bryan brings he and Brie’s daughter out and they both seemed genuinely happy to b apart of the hall of fame. A “Yes” chant ends the segment and the Bellas say they better see all the fans at ‘Mania in Tampa.
This will be a polarizing pick for many, but I’m happy for both ladies. After having to endure countless backstage segments during the horrid guest of the week crap, they really did their best to excel in the ring and to tell stories.
Daniel Bryan defeats Heath Slater with a Buisaku Knee Kick. Drew Gulak actually tries to coach Slater, who doesn’t listen and this was a rather quick victory for Bryan who makes short work of Slater with the running knee for the victory.
Mandy Rose is met backstage at the arena entrance by Dolph Ziggler who asks what she’s doing. Rose is waiting for her ride. Dolph agrees to give her a ride and she agrees. Otis has been watching this whole segment behind a bin and he is disheveled with matted hair. He is going into creeper mode apparently.
Sheamus cuts a promo talking about being done with Shorty G and how he’s ready to eliminate bigger prey and he’ll do so in the elimination chamber.
Naomi bests Carmella is a match to determine the number one contender for Bayley’s Women’s title at Super Showdown. The two women have a solid back and forth outing and after a split-legged moonsault, it’s Naomi who secures the three count and the opportunity to head to the PPV to take on Bayley. There doesn’t seem to be much direction for the Smackdown Women’s title at the moment for ‘Mania.
Eyes In The Back Of His Head
Goldberg ends the show by spearing “The Fiend” before their title match at Super Showdown. Bill got a tremendous reaction and Bray Wyatt appeared on the video wall with an episode of Firefly Fun House, telling Goldberg someone was there to meet him.
Goldberg, as if he had eyes in the back of his head, knew that and he speared “The Fiend” out of his boots. “The Fiend” makes his exit as Goldberg climbs up on the top turnbuckle in celebration to end the night. Everyone fully expects Wyatt to retain, but this was fun and the crowd enjoyed seeing Goldberg. That was it for the show this week and the march towards the Elimination Chamber begins next week.
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