Monday, July 16, 2018

WWE Extreme Rules 2018

A wee bit late on this one - had a taxing shift at work, but better late than never and it was well-worth missing a PPV live in order to prove to myself that I can do whatever I set my mind to. Almas vs. Sin Cara on the damn pre-show features Almas taking a flip bump off the top to the apron, which is so stupid. Almas wins with a hammerlock DDT thanks to a Vega distraction - so he's just barely good enough to beat Sin Cara with cheating. Sanity beats New Day in a table match when EY elbows Kofi off the top to the floor.

Ronda and Travis Browne enter the building as fans. Deleter of Worlds face the B-Team, who get a huge pop. B-Team wins it after a mscue and Bo hits the draping neckbreaker on Matt - good for them, they're more over and it gives them some momentum. WWE actually comes off like they're rewarding a somewhat naturally-evolving act here. Kurt gives Brock an ultimatum to etiher show up on Raw to negotiate terms for his next defense or Brock will be stripped of the title. Balor comes out in new, awesome silver and black gear to face Constable Corbin. Balor wins off a cradle to avoid the End of Days.

We get a wacky WWE Superstar Memes video for Summerslam.  Kane is beaten up backstage by the Bludgeon Brothers with a door and Bryan is tossed into a sheet metal door. THE MALLET is used on a door on Kane's leg. NOT THE MALLET NO! Paige demands medical attention ASAP. Asuka vs. Carmella features an Edge-O-Matic to start and then Ellsworth drops a chain in the ring from the cage. Hip Attack misses by a mile. ASUKA LOCK IS ON, but Mella gets to the ropes and goes outside. Ellsworth is stuck upside down trying to get out of the cage. Asuka beats him up and jiggles nicely. Asuka beats up guys trying to put him back in the cage and kicks Ellsworth's ass - literally. Carmella tosses her head into the cage in front of the ref and was none of this crap a DQ?

Nakamura beats Jeff Hardy with a dick punch before the bell and an instant Kinshasa. Nakamura wore Hashimoto tribute pants tonight and they looked fantastic. Orton returns and kicks Jeff Hardy in the balls. So he and Nakamura can be the Nut Crackers now.

Braun and Owens have a pretty nothing cage match until the finish. Owens gets a stunner and a bit of heat with handcuffs, but gets chokeslammed off the top of the cage through an announce table in one of his craziest bumps ever. Somehow, a decade into the HD era and 20 years after Mick's bump, they almost completely miss the landing in real-time. Owens wins the match to an "OH. MY. GOD!" from Coach that sounds so fake. A "Get These Hands" chant breaks out and KO gets really nothing out of the win.

Bryan faces the Bludgeon Brothers 1 on 2. Bryan eats a ton of offense until Kane comes out with a walking boot and chokeslams the Bludgeons. He gets his knee kicked out and Bryan tags in for a missile dropkick and the yes kicks. Rowan hits the spin kick and a powerbomb/lariat combo ends it. The B-Team cheers on Roman and Roman is a dick to them. Lashley and Roman have a fun hard-hitting (bot not soft-spoken) match. Roman hits a superman punch, but eats a rebound spear and Lashley wins it.

Alexa vs. Nia features Nia tosses weapons around. Corey explains all the kendo sticks by saying they're here for ninjas. Alexa puts a chair in the corner and Nia of course misses and hits the chair. Ronda watches Nattie get beaten up and mean mugs until she jumps the rail to attack Mickie. Ronda hits the spinning Samoan drop and throws her into the German announce table and mean mugs Alexa from across the ring.

Ronda attacks her, but Mickie hits her with a kendo stick. A crossbody leads to a Samoan drop setup, but Mickie chairshots her! Alexa hits a chair to the gut of Nia, then to the back and DDTs her on the chair to win. Ronda runs in immediately - so that win itself sure helped no one. Rusev's intro is so important that he gets the Hulu plug intro. A fan with a Rusev Day shirt looks at his phone instead of Rusev.

AJ's reign is at 250 days - making him the longest-reigning WWE Champion in five years. It's an impressive stat and most importantly, began when it ended Jinder's reign! Rusev looks pretty good here, hitting the fallaway Samoan drop. Aiden pulls the pad off the top rope, but Rusev bonks it and eats a Phenomenal Forearm to end it! Seth vs. Dolph is up with Dolph in new, good-looking blue, white, and red tights.

Buckle bomb into a cradle gets a fall for Seth 4 minutes in. STOMP gets another fall 8 minutes in. Drew attacks Seth for a DQ, so he's up 3-0. This costs him 1 fall, but Dolph gets 1 fall off of it right away and a superkick gets him a second - so the attack got him one more fall than it cost him. A post shot and a Zig Zag ties it at 3-3. A dive is met with a forearm and Dolph cradles him with the ropes to go up 4-3. Dolph gets 2 off an amateur cradle, but Seth pins him with a sunset flip after Dolph's head hits the post. Seth locks on a sharpshooter and then a crossface, but the time limit expires with a tie - and Dolph retains.
Kurt comes down and says it was an incredible match - but nothing was settled. Kurt makes it sudden death. Zig Zag off a Drew distraction gets the win. They were given the main event slot here and felt elevated by the match - which was the best overall one on the show. All three guys feel like top-level guys and the key is the follow-through. Dolph in particular feels like he has been completely resurrected, and that seemed impossible before as he was such a jobber and goofball before this Raw push.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

NJPW G1 Special in San Francisco 2018

Kenny's title win at Dominion is the pre-show - and seeing him cut a subtitled promo is great. Cody and the Bucks talk about things before the show with Cody saying that this isn't about the leadership - it's about him beating Kenny before and wanting this shot. Jim Ross talks about the history of the Cow Palace, and he says there are five titles on the line - and he's sure at least one will change hands.

YOSHI-HASHI, Gedo, Rocky, Sho, and Yo are out to face Haku, his sons, Takahashi, and Chase Owens. Haku is hugely over here and starts with Yoshi. Haku goes down off a dropkick, but hits a corner lariat. Haku and Loa and Tama headbutt Yoshi down. Loa eats a rana by Rocky. Haku piledrives Rocky for 2. Backstabber into a shotgun kick for R3K. HAKU GRAB'S GEDO'S BEARD and Tonga stuns him to win.

SUZUKI-GUN IS OUT! Suzuki and ZSJ are the British champs, and Suzuki's theme still gets a pop with it being revamped. Ishii and Yano are out - I predict doom for Yano. Tons of forearms between Suzuki and Ishii lead to ZSJ and Yano being wacky before MORE STIFF SHOTS BETWEEN SUZUKI AND ISHII! Minoru eats a Saito suplex off the go-behind sleeper attempt. ZSJ works Yano, who gets smacked with the buckle padding! Yano gets a cradle and wins! Suzuki wants to destroy people with chairs, but he's detained by people who then get destroyed.
Marty and Page are out to face Tana and Kushida. Tana works wonderfully with Marty. Page comes in and eats a double sledge from Kushida. TAGUCHI GETS BEATEN UP and misses a hip attack. DRAGON SCREWS FROM TANA! Tana narrowly avoids a crossface chickenwing from Marty. MARTY SUPERKICKS THE KNEE OF TANA AND STOMPS ON THE HAND OF KUSHIDA! Discus elbow from Kushida. Hoverboard lock to Marty and a cloverleaf to Page. Page hits his finish and pins Kushida! Page is quite good, but it doesn't always shine on TV.
Cobb is shown challenging Goto and Josh hypes Cobb up. It's indeed a match. Not really much to it. Goto elbows the head, but it gets blocked and Cobb nounts a comeback. Cobb hits a sidewinder suplex and a standing moonsault headbutt misses. Tour of the Islands is escaped into a sleeper and Ushi Gorosihi gets 2. and a GTR ends it.

EVIL and Sanada are out for the tag title rematch. PARADISE LOCK TO MATT! Nick is in and hits a double lariat. SWINGING SKULL END and a moonsault misses. TRIANGLE TORNADO DDT TO SANADA! 450 GETS 2! Sharpshooter and swanton! Sanada gets the ropes! More Bang meets knees and a moonsault miss. EVIL GERMAN to Nick! STO is blocked with a spinning back elbow. Magic Killer gets 2 thanks to a save. Accidental double superkick to the ref, DOUBLE SUPERKICK WITH THE CHAIR. TOMBSTONE COUNTER TO THE MELTZER DRIVER! Magic Killer hits again, but a kickout is done instead of the save. Double HBK/Shelton superkick to Sanada! MELTZER DRIVER ENDS IT!

Fighting Spirit Unleashed and Lion's Break are announced. We go to an intermission and get a rundown of Hiromu vs. Dragon Lee. Kenny vs. Cody is recapped, dating things back to AJ being taken out of the Bullet Club by him. Naito's theme is hugely over and I love Bushi's three wacky tongues. Ospreay and Okada are out. AND OKADA HAS BALLOONS! Naito and Okada are funny together, while Bushi is working nicely with Ospreay. CHERRIO misses and Naito clubs him. Okada flapjacks Bushi onto Naito. Bushi and Ospreay go at it and Will eats shotgun knees. Shoulder-mount Oscutter/Stormbreaker ends it.

Dragon Lee vs. Hiromu Takahashi is up, and it's going to be insane and is. Giant dive by Lee to the floor before Hiromu hits the crazy flying standing senton thing to the floor off the top. "HE STAKES HIM LIKE A GODDAMN VAMPIRE!" as Josh says when Dragon Lee hits a double stomp off the top to the apron to the floor on Hiromu. SUNSET BOMB TO THE FLOOR FOR HIROMU! SNAP GERMANS FOR EVERYONE BACK AND FORTH! SUPLEX PREFECTURE! German into a superkick into another Gmerna into a reverse rana!

OVERHAND CHOPS APLENTY! Belly to belly into the buckle by Hiromu! Hiromu superkick is met with a DL C4. Lee's suplex powerbomb is met with a triangle choke, who Rampage bombs him, but Hiromu keeps it on. DRAGON DRIVER SUPLEX! JESUS! Suplex powerbomb hits for 2.9. Destroyer-ish thing gets 2.9 TIME BOMB HITS TO END IT! Goddamn this was an insane video game match.

I'm getting hyped up for CJ Parker vs. Jay White - amazing video package. It's the FLAM-BU-YANT Juice Robinson! The mainly red with black markup gear works so much better for Switchblade. A cute blonde is shown with piercings and JR gets upset briefly. A quick tackle and punches alongside a crossbody to the floor start things off. They're managing to keep the crowd hot despite pure insanity in the last match - so this is miracle in and of itself. Juice tosses him through the barricade, and thankfully, it just goes into the timekeeper's area.

Punches and chops lead to a suplex to the floor by White. White tosses him through another barricade. JR buries the lack of a count and the usage of the barricade. Half hatch into the corner for 2. Jay flips the fans off and stomps on the broken hand. A giant " FUCK YOU, SWITCHBLADE" chant tbreaks out.

MUTA LOCK BY WHITE! Jay White is turning the corner in real-time in this match - it's great to see. ROPE-TRAPPING CHOPS BY JAY! Juice tells him to eat shit, so Jay chops him more. Juice punches, but eats an arm wringer. Juice spinebusts him. Jay hits a flatliner and a German for 2. Fujiwara armbar with a hand attack. Jay tosses Juice into the announcers, and Josh says he's fucked up now and rushes the ring. Josh calls him a motherfucker and Jay attacks the shoulder. JR says the officials need to get their shit together. FLATLINER ON THE APRON TO JUICE! RUSSIAN LEGSWEEP TO THE FLOOR! SUPERPLEX OFF THE TOP GETS 2.9!

Inverted crucifix elbows by White. Jay avoids a punch thanks to the cast and low blows him. JUICE PUNCHES HIM WITH THE CAST WITH THE REF DISTRACTED! PULP FRICTION HITS! 2.99999! Pulp Friction leads to a hand punch and a HALF NELSON SUPLEX ON THE HEAD! BLADE RUNNER LEADS TO A SCHOOLBOY AND A TITLE WIN FOR JUICE!

The Omega-Cody hype video talks about his rise to greatness. Cody is out with black hair again and purple and gold gear. He gets his own throne and caravan intro too. Cody with this getup feels like he's cosplaying as a pro wrestler instead of being a pro wrestler. Cody and Kenny start off with basic hiplocks, but meaingful things with Cody playing the monster role of sorts. Uppercut and powerslam get 2. Cody uses Brandi as a shield during the rise of the Terminator dive, but Cody eats a baseball slide and then Kenny misses a plancha. Cody eats a double stomp off the barricade through a table!

Omega hits a rana. RISE OF THE TERMINATOR DIVE HITS! V TRIGGER TO THE NECK, TO THE FACE! Back and forth forearms, with JR and Josh talking about how Cody and Dusty each had impressive athletic credentials. Cody brings a ladder in and slams Kenny onto it! GORDBUSTER ON THE LADDER! A guardrail hits a guy in the knee, which is just terrible. Cody climbs a giant-ass ladder and Cody shoves Matt. Kenny and Cody fight on top of the ladder and Kenny teases a superplex off the ladder to the floor through the table, but CODY SUPERPLEXES HIM INTO THE RING OFF IT! HOLY SHIT!

Kenny hits a rewind rana, but Cody sends Kenny down and threatens a belt shot. CROSS RHODES! 2.9! V TRIGGERS! Vertebreaker is avoided and Kenny lands a spinkick to the neck. TONS OF V-TRIGGERS FOR 2. CODY EATS A POWERBOMB OVER THE TOP ROPE AND INTO, BUT NOT THROUGH THE TABLE!
 V trigger is set up again, but Cody lands a lariat! Omega hits a piledriver for 2. ONE WINGED ANGEL ENDS IT! Kenny talks about how everyone needs to stand behind good people and give one another the best life possible. Just as he gives the best matches to the fans with the roster. GOODBYE AND GOODNIGHT, BANG! Bullet Club too sweets one another - so the Bullet Club appears to be fully reformed to some degree.

OR NOT. TAMA TONGA JUMPS OMEGA! Haku, Loa, and Tonga attack him! Page comes in to save! Gunstun to Marty! Cody comes down and makes a brief save for Kenny, but eats a Gunstun when he uses the chair on them. HAKU PILEDRIVES KENNY ON THE CHAIR! Okay, it's 2018 and Haku is destroying the IWGP Champion. The new-age BC is reuinited by common rivals and the Firing Squad is anti-bullshit.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

WWE Money in the Bank 2018

A billion year long video on MITB airs to start the show. Bryan is out to open the show against Cass - well, if you're not in the main event, open the show. Cass comes out to no reaction to his bland theme. Cass avoids a heel hook and elbows the back. Cass works a long bearhug. Bryan works the knee over for a while and hits the corner dropkicks. Bryan gets the yes lock and Cass accidentally taps but waves it off. Bryan hits the crossbody off the top to the floor. Cass hits a fallaway slam off the second rope. Bryan clips the knee and then kicks away at it before a buzzsaw kick. Cass boots him for a 2.9. Bryan gets the kneebar and the tap.

New Day is backstage chatting about their MITB plans. KO is called a fool and brings a trash bag full of pancakes. No word on if he's here to see Honk if You're Horny in peace. KO says he's not a pancake guy, or a breakfast guy - he didn't like Booty Os either. Sami's out to face Lashley. Sami jumps him early and gets an edge with some punches and crossfaces. Lashley gets the delayed vertical, a Canadian backbreaker into sorta-a-dominator, and then hits another suplex. He does this over and over and wins. Riveting.
Ronda shadowboxes backstage with Nattie. Elias sings before his match with Seth. Seth's mouth gets busted up and he hits the kneeling superkick for 2. Elias hits the big flying elbow for 2. Seth gets a cradle and wins by cheating with the slacks. Women's MITB is up. Ember misses a flip dive that Becky sells. Sasha eats a blind diving crossbody from Ember onto a ladder. Nattie hits the run-up dorpkick on the ladder. Naomi does some stuff with a ladder mid-ring and blockbusters Sasha off the apron. Sasha and Charlotte bonk each other off the ladder. Sasha hits the shotgun knees off the ladder to Charlotte and Nattie.  Bexploder kinda on a corner ladder. Alexa grabs the case.
Kurt and Paige chat about brand supremacy. Baron tells Kurt to bring both MITB cases to Raw. Paige asks him "what's with the tude, dude!". Sunil comes out in a wheelchair and a sling and neckbrace. I like them being a pro wrestling game in at least some ways still. Roman misses the drive by and we get a LONG CHINLOCK. CM Punk chants break out. Sunil attacks Roman and gets his ass kicked. Big Dog beats Jinder. Riveting. The Special Olympian in the Big Show ad gets her own entrance on the show - well that's sweet. Pre-show match is recapped along with the rest of the show to this point.

Carmella vs. Asuka is hyped up, which is good since I completely forgot about that match. Carmella avoids Asuka by kicking away on the ropes. Asuka hits a sliding knee on the apron. Carmella low-bridges her off a hip attack on the ropes. Asuka gets 2 off a cradle and hits a sliding knee. An Asuka lookalike jumps on the apron and gets a CM Punk chant. Asuka hits a pop-up kick, but Ellsworth is revealed as the imposter and Carmella pins her with a superkick!
AJ vs. Nakamura is up, with AJ eating a slew of knee strikes. They brawl in the crowd for a bit. A WHOOP WHOOP chant breaks out. AJ avoids a ballshot, which completely shocks Nakamura. Nakamura taps to the calf crusher, but it doesn't matter. AJ chairshots the back, shoulders, and legs. Nakamura lures him into a LOW BLOW! AJ gets up and eats a Kinshasa, but the knee is hurt - so it doesn't get all the usual damage. AJ uses the table to get up at 9. STYLES CLASH OFF THE STEPS! Nakamura uses the table for a 9.9 count! Phenomenal forearm from the ring through the announce table! That does it!
The Hardys doc is plugged and Cole gets in a "from Woken to BROKEN - the table is destroyed!". Tale of the Tape is done for Jax vs. Ronda. Nia comes down first and Ronda is hugely over. Nia tosses her around and avalanches her in the corner. Ronda avoids another one and gets corner shots. Trinalge armbar leads to a Rampage powerbomb. GIANT SWING INTO THE BARRICADE to Rousey! Gorilla press drop hits for Nia and gets 2. AS SHE'S IN A BEARHUG, Coach says this is a chance for Ronda to rest. Ronda hits a crossbody off the top for 2! JUDO THROW TO NIA GETS 2.5! RONDA GETS THE ARMBAR, but Nia cradles her for 2. URANAGE BY RONDA! ALEXA HITS RONDA WITH THE CASE! She teases a cash-in, but beats up Ronda more and Nia with the case.
Case shots, arm work, the DDT and the Twisted Bliss end it - Alexa wins the title!

Saturday, June 16, 2018

NXT Takeover Chicago 2018

A rundown of the last few months of TV airs. It has been some TV. Over one year ago at last year's Chicago show, Johnny was destroyed by Ciampa. Burch and Lorcan get a Takeover payday - good for them. Kyle is sent outside early, but he recovers and knees Burch in the corner. Lorcan tags in to run wild and lands a double running blockbuster. Doomsday European uppercut hits! Strong and Lorcan have a stiff knee and uppercut exchange before a hocket fight breaks out between the teams. High/low sweep ends it - good, but not amazing.

Hogan getup on Dream!? Well, that's...interesting...Dream overpowers him and poses! INDIE STANDOFF! Dream hits a run-up somersault senton! Ricochet hits a tope, then a fosbury flop! DREAM HITS A SUPER DEATH VALLEY DRIVER! This insanity only gets 2.9! Dream suplexes him off the apron to get a near double countout. Dream hits a rolling DVD for 2.9! Running suplex from Ricochet leads to a superkick from Dream. Dream talks shit and eats a DVD of his own! Purple Rainmaker on Dream gets 2.9! Ricochet wants the 630, but Dream moves - so he does an SSP and eats knees for 2.9! A COAST TO COAST PURPLE RAINAMKER MISSES! 630 to the back ends it!
Shayna vs. Nikki is hyped up with the word "championship" said about 900 times. Nikki wants to be taken down and is, and does wacky things. Cross gets a sleepr and then Shayna does, but Nikki avoids it. Nikki goes for a sleeper on the floor, but gets Vader dropped into the ramp! Nikki hits a draping fisherwoman's suplex for 2.9 when Shayna puts her foot on the rope. Shayna gets the sleeper and chokes her out while Nikki has a look of bliss on her face. EC3 is in the crowd alongside KEITH LEE!
Black vs. Lars begins with clubbering! Lars avalanches him in the corner. Lars world's strongest slams him for 2. Lars goes for an inside-out chokeslam, but he eats a spinning back elbow. APRON POWERSLAM BY LARS! Okay, Braun needs that ASAP. Diving headbutts hits for 2.5. Black Mass hits sorta! He gets a "you fucked up" chant and eats a lariat. Jumping knee and a second Black Mass hits! Third one knocks him out to win it!
Candice gives Johnny a half-crutch and tells him to kick Ciampa's ass. Johnny sends him out with a lariat over the top. They fight in the crowd and Johnny does Dreamer's 20+ year old bit of taking a stop sign out of a fan sign. Johnny hits a big dive. Ciampa takes him to suplex city. Johnny topes him and Ciampa tosses a trash can at his head on the steps, as ya do. Air Raid Siren on the steps gets 2.9! Ciampa gets bolt clippers and cuts the apron away. WWE saw Bully destroy the ring on the TNA show they put clips of on the Prichard show and thought "hey, let's do that!" Super celtic cross is countered into a sunset bomb that is countered, but leads to a buckle superkick. Johnny's pescado is met with a crutch. Johnny chairshots the bad knee to death! Ciampa kicks him into a corner can and locks on the Gargano escape!
Ciampa slugs the neck and works on his brace. Crutch to the neck gets 2.9! Ciampa picks him up and walks alongside him and tosses him into the LED board. They go to the crowd and climb onto a wacky area. Ciampa takes off Johnny's wedding ring, spits on it, and throwd it in the crowd. This fires up Johnny to send him through the table with a celtic cross!
They tease taking Ciampa out, but Johnny takes him back to the bsuted up ring and beats him up on the stretcher. Gargano Escape gets the tap, but there's no ref for it and he beats up goons. He handcuffs him for a superkick party! GARGANO ESCAPE! More goons come down and Ciampa hits the DDT on the exposed wood to end it!