Week of 1/18/2016 - 1/24/2016 (Monday - Wednesday)
Iron Mike Sharpe has passed away at 64.
Monday Night Raw
Date: January 18, 2016
Location: Nationwide Arena, Columbus, Ohio
Commentators: Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield, Byron Saxton
It's the go home show for the Royal Rumble and that can make for a slower night of Raw. The big story from last week would seem to be Brock Lesnar being added to the Rumble to go after the WWE World Title. There's no word on where Reigns might be coming in, which opens up some options for Sunday. As for tonight, Brock is the guest on Chris Jericho's
Highlight Reel so let's get to it.
Martin Luther King video. I don't know why but they always do some kind of a tribute to this. It certainly deserves the attention but this seems like one of the most important days of the year to WWE.
Here's Roman Reigns with something to say. Reigns talks about this Sunday being the fight of his life but tonight he only cares about Brock Lesnar. Instead he gets Chris Jericho, who Reigns is glad to see even though Jericho isn't the man he wants right now. Lesnar will be on the Highlight Reel tonight though and Jericho wants Reigns to be there too. Reigns loves the idea but here's the League of Nations to interrupt.
Sheamus wants to know when this Rumble became Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns. I'm thinking that was last week chum. The League is involved as well and they intend to take back that WWE World Title. Sheamus insults Jericho's clothes so Chris gets in a weak insult about the mohawk. Del Rio brags about winning the Rumble a few years back but Jericho doesn't feel like having him on the Highlight Reel either.
Rusev talks about rumbling every single day in Bulgaria but Jericho can't understand him. Jericho asks Reigns who won the Rumble last year and who he eliminated to win. We get a comes up short joke from Jericho and a challenge is issued for right now. Apparently it's Rusev vs. Reigns with Jericho as guest referee for no real reason.
Roman Reigns vs. Rusev
Non-title. Reigns grabs a headlock to start before firing off right hands. The League offers a quick distraction though and Rusev gets in a cheap shot to take over. That means it's time for a chinlock though, followed by a nice spinwheel kick for two on the champ. Back from a break with Reigns trying a headbutt, only to get ground down with a headlock. JBL incorrectly says Rusev eliminated half a dozen people in his debut Rumble as I guess even he has tried to forget that worthless cameo in 2014.
Reigns fights back with the corner clotheslines, only to get kicked in the side of the head for a pretty slow two count. Rusev tries a super Samoan Drop but gets countered into a Batista Bomb for the same deliberate two. Del Rio offers a distraction so Sheamus can jump Roman from behind, but Jericho is actually smart and ejects Sheamus anyway. Barrett gets the same treatment and Jericho throws in a bonus cartwheel. In the melee, Reigns hits a quick Superman Punch and the spear for the pin at 13:55.
Post break, Stephanie yells at Jericho for not having the authority to make that match. Jericho goes into his standard string of Stephanie insults but she cuts him off to say he insulted her by making the bigger Highlight Reel. Apparently this means she has to negotiate with Paul Heyman and owes Brock more money now. As usual, Stephanie manages to take something interesting and turn it boring.
Brie Bella vs. Natalya
Natalya brings out Paige as this is the Total Divas preview match. Even Cole calls it such. After a clip from the show of drama due to Alicia Fox unfollowing Paige on social media (the highest insult), we're ready to go with Natalya hitting a quick basement dropkick. That earns her the BRIE MODE knee and a chinlock. Brie spends too long posing after the YES Kicks though and it's a Sharpshooter to give Natalya the win at 1:30.
Wyatt Family vs. Dudley Boyz/Ryback
Why is this still a thing??? There was a tables match on Thursday where the Dudleys won, only to be put through tables after. We take a break before the bell, meaning the only thing shown between breaks was the entrances. This is joined in progress with Bubba suplexing Harper and doing some Dusty Rhodes punches, only to get kicked in the face. It's off to Rowan vs. D-Von with the latter grabbing a neckbreaker.
That's it for D-Von's offense though as Rowan takes him into the corner so the Wyatts can take turns on him. Bubba starts playing cheerleader and it's back to Rowan for the double fist head vice. We hit the chinlock from Harper for a few seconds before D-Von collides with Bray. That means a hot tag to Ryback for some house cleaning and everything breaks down. Ryback heads outside to stare down Strowman but gets decked by Wyatt. Rowan breaks up a 3D to Harper, allowing Luke to hit the discus lariat for the pin on Bubba at 6:42.
Big Show vs. Heath Slater
Before the match, the Social Outcasts promise to win on Sunday, though Axel says he can't understand a word Rose says. Slater runs away from a big chop in the corner to start but is pulled back in by the hair. The KO Punch is good for the pin at 56 seconds.
The rest of the Outlaws are wiped out post match.
Stephanie gives the League of Nations a pep talk for the Royal Rumble.
Here are Vince and Stephanie to draw out the #1 entrant for the Royal Rumble. Vince brings up winning the 1999 Royal Rumble and Stephanie praises him for a bit. After a quick spin, Vince pulls out a ball and the #1 entrant is........of course it's Roman Reigns. Vince thinks that's quite the coincidence so they pull another name and it's.......Roman Reigns. They even draw it a third time and leaves Reigns' name out, only to draw Reigns a third straight time. You had to know this was coming and it's probably the right call.
Becky Lynch vs. Tamina
Charlotte and Ric are at ringside. Becky starts in with the strikes but charges into a superkick. We hit the early chinlock for a bit before a slam gets two on Becky. Lynch fights back with her usual strikes in the corner, followed by the running legdrops for two. The Disarm-Her makes Tamina tap at 4:04.
Post match Becky asks for a Divas Title shot on Sunday but Charlotte says no. Becky gets smart by insulting Ric and saying Charlotte just isn't like her dad. That's enough for Flair, who accepts the challenge on his daughter's behalf. Charlotte really doesn't seem cool with that.
Kalisto/Dean Ambrose vs. Alberto Del Rio/Sheamus
Here's your fifteen minute match designed to do nothing more than to kill fifteen minutes. Kevin Owens is on commentary to make this more entertaining. Ambrose pounds on Sheamus to start and it's quickly off to Kalisto, who is slammed down onto Sheamus for two. Del Rio is sent to the floor and we take a break.
Back with Sheamus hammering on Kalisto in the corner until the masked man jawbreaks his way out of a chinlock. The hot tag brings in Ambrose to start speeding things up, including a suicide dive to take out Del Rio. Dean gets in trouble again though as Sheamus gets two off an Irish Curse.
Del Rio gets the same off a kick to the head and it's time for some choking on the ropes. A Backstabber stops Dean's latest comeback but the top rope double stomp is broken up by something like an armdrag. Owens hopes Ambrose hurt himself but Dean is fine enough for a big clothesline to Sheamus and a hot tag to Kalisto.
A headscissors and the rolling kick to the head have Sheamus in trouble and Kalisto stumbles into a tornado DDT. The Salida Del Sol gets two with Del Rio making the save. Dean takes him to the floor and gets kicked in the face, leaving Sheamus to Brogue Kick Kalisto for the pin at 13:20.
We recap the opening segment.
Clips of the India tour.
We look at Jericho breaking Xavier Woods' trombone last week.
Earlier today, there was a funeral for Francesa the Trombone. Big E. starts quoting Jay Z. and Woods loses it. Kofi offers to get a new trombone but that's too much so soon. Francesca lives forever in Xavier's heart and she would want Big E. to beat Jey Uso.
Here's the annual All About The Numbers video.
28 Royal Rumble
811 people eliminations
42 eliminations by Kane, the most of all time
46 WWE Hall of Famers who have entered
8 Hall of Famers who have won
3 wins by Steve Austin
62:12 that Rey Mysterio lasted
1 second that Santino Marella lasted
2 straight wins Roman needs to retain
18 years since that happened
15 former World Champions on the roster
6 former Royal Rumble winners
1, as in the number that Reigns will enter the Rumble
Big E. vs. Jey Uso
Kofi and Xavier are in suits from the funeral. Big E. takes him down to start until Jey jumps over in the corner and starts dancing. A quick cross body gets two for Jey and they head outside, only to have Jey get backdropped on the floor as we take a break. Back with Jey in the abdominal stretch before he avoids the apron splash to send E. outside again.
The running Umaga Attack misses in the corner but Jey settles for a kick to the face for two instead. E. misses another charge and falls to the floor so Jey can nail a nice plancha. Back in and Woods offers a distraction to break up the Superfly Splash, allowing the Big Ending to give E. the win at 9:34.
Mark Henry, Titus O'Neil and R-Truth are in the back talking about the dream. Neville comes in and it's a bit awkward.
The League is talking about something.
Mark Henry/Titus O'Neil/R-Truth vs. Stardust/Ascension/Tyler Breeze
All eight of these guys will be in the Royal Rumble. Titus throws Viktor around to start and it's quickly off to Neville vs. Stardust with the latter dancing for some reason. Mark comes in and runs Stardust over before Truth comes in to work on a hammerlock. There's a hiptoss to Stardust but Breeze kicks Truth off the apron to take over.
It's quickly back to Konnor for an elbow drop but Truth grabs a DDT to absolutely no reaction. Neville and Breeze come in to speed things up with Neville throwing him down and getting two off the standing shooting star. Everything breaks down and the World's Strongest Slam to Breeze sets up the Red Arrow for the pin at 6:11.
It's time for the Highlight Reel with Jericho introducing his guests but being cut off by Heyman. Jericho cuts off Heyman's signature lines and asks where Lesnar is. Brock will indeed be here tonight but Heyman would rather talk about what happened the last time Jericho and Lesnar were in the same ring together.
Jericho gets back to the Rumble though and asks why Heyman tried to get Lesnar straight to the main event of Wrestlemania. Could it be that Brock has developed so many enemies that Heyman doesn't think he's a lock to win again? Heyman laughs it off and plugs the Network by saying people subscribe to see Brock fight any one man so why wouldn't you subscribe to see him fight everyone at once. Jericho suggests that he'll throw Brock out and here's Lesnar for a rebuttal.
Before anything can be said or done though, here's Roman just like he promised. We get the big showdown as Jericho steps to the side and Reigns spears the heck out of Lesnar. Before anything else can happen though, Lesnar has to deal with the League of Nations, allowing Roman to spear Lesnar down again. Cue the Wyatts and the numbers get the better of Reigns but Brock sends the Family after Lesnar. They circle Brock and get in a shot apiece with Sister Abigail's Kiss leaving Brock laying to end the show.
Roman Reigns b. Rusev Spear
Natalya b. Brie Bella Sharpshooter
Big Show b. Heath Slater KO Punch
Becky Lynch b. Tamina Disarm-Her
Sheamus/Alberto Del Rio b. Kalisto/Dean Ambrose Brogue Kick to Kalisto
Big E. b. Jey Uso Big Ending
Neville/Titus O'Neil/R-Truth/Mark Henry b. Stardust/Tyler Breeze/Ascension Red Arrow to Breeze
Date: January 19, 2016
Location: Sands Bethlehem Events Center, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
Commentators: Josh Matthews, D'Angelo Dinero
It's another big night as we have the final showdown between Ethan Carter III and Matt Hardy for the TNA World Title. This time it's a last man standing match with Carter defending his title and Hardy putting his TNA career on the line. Other than that we might find out the latest name on Kurt Angle's farewell tour as he approaches his final match at the end of the month. Let's get to it.
We open with a recap of Matt Hardy's rise through the World Title Series, only to slip up in the finals against Carter. This set up their latest match for the title with Hardy offering to put his career on the line.
Here's Jeff Hardy (of course) to call out his brother (of course) for a chat. Jeff talks about how they became famous by being risk takers and diving off ladders. He may be the artist in the family but he would never be where he was without Matt. Tonight feels off though and Matt thinks it's because his career is on the line. Matt talks about how he's let everyone down but tonight is the night to gamble. Wrestling is like a game of chess and tonight Matt knows he can checkmate Carter.
Tonight the dream comes true but here's Tyrus to interrupt. A dream can turn into a nightmare with a single change. Matt will be taken out by Carter tonight but no one has dealt with Jeff yet. Tyrus has done everything in this company for business, but tonight he wants to settle a personal issue with Jeff. Let's do it right now.
Jeff Hardy vs. Tyrus
Tyrus throws him into the corner to start but Jeff botches something off the top, sending him down and tweaking his knee. The big guy slowly starts working on the knee by wrapping it around the ropes and post. The referee tries to make the save but gets shoved down to DQ Tyrus at 2:58.
Jeff gives Tyrus a Twisting Stunner post match.
Feast or Fired video as this year's edition is next week. This year the X-Division Title seems to have been replaced by the King of the Mountain Title.
The Wolves have beaten everyone but now they want Beer Money. Crazzy Steve comes in and grabs Davey's belt but Abyss jumps the Wolves from behind. So now it's Steve/Abyss as a team? Uh, sure why not.
Knockouts Title: Awesome Kong vs. Gail Kim
Kim is defending as we're flashing back to Bound For Glory. Oh wait it's ok because Kong has backup now. Kong runs her over to start and grabs a sleeper for a spinning throw. That's a new one. We hit the neck crank (that's not a new one) for a bit before Kong headbutts her into the corner. A running splash misses though and Kim puts on something like a Black Widow on the mat, followed by a rollup for two.
Kim drops the giant with a tornado DDT but Jade pulls her out to the floor. Gail gets back in but dives onto the Dollhouse instead of going after Kong but a neckbreaker gets two. Jade breaks it up with a distraction though, which draws out the Beautiful People to go after the Dollhouse. Kong almost hits Jade by mistake and it's Eat Defeat, followed by launching Jade onto Kong, to retain Gail's title at 5:45.
We look back at Jeff getting injured earlier in case you have a really short attention span.
Here's Beer Money to call out Bram/Eric Young for a fight. Instead they get Eli Drake/Jesse Godderz who say it's not 2006 and Beer Money's time is done. Storm semi-quotes Roddy Piper (I'm all out of beer.) and the brawl is on.
Beer Money vs. Eli Drake/Jesse Godderz
They slug it out on the floor to start until it's Drake beating on James in the ring. That goes nowhere as the hot tag brings in Roode to clean house, including a Hart Attack on Drake and a catapult into a DDT on Godderz. The double suplex on Drake sets up the name shouting, followed by DWI to put Godderz away at 4:00.
We look at Jeff injuring his knee for the third time in forty minutes.
Matt tells Jeff to go to the hospital so the knee doesn't get hurt even worse.
Here's Kurt Angle to address his farewell tour. Last week he had a five star match with Drew Galloway (not really but it was good). Now he's not sure who to face next because there's a lot of great talent in the back. This brings out Lashley, who talks about Kurt getting him into professional wrestling because he saw something special in Lashley.
They finally had their big showdown last year and it was a great match. It was the best of times and it was the worst of times for Lashley because he was in the ring with Kurt Angle but he lost. Now Lashley needs one more match to get this out of his system. That's fine with Angle, who says it's going to be real. This was fine.
Post break a woman comes up to Lashley and whispers that his pain is her pleasure.
Mike Bennett vs. Pepper Parks
This is Bennett's debut on Impact and Parks gets a jobber entrance. They slowly walk around a bit until Parks shoves him into the corner. Bennett superkicks him down and hammers away as Maria seems to approve. A pair of suplexes puts Parks down again and Divine Intervention (Samoan Driver) gives Mike the pin at 2:59.
Post match Bennett talks about building a kingdom of miracles where everyone says yes we do.
Ethan says this ends tonight. Matt has his wife and son but Ethan has his family in Tyrus. This week, Matt Hardy goes home in this, and the camera zooms out to show that they're sitting in an ambulance.
TNA World Title: Matt Hardy vs. Ethan Carter III
Carter is defending and this is last man standing. Matt jumps him during the big match intros but Carter spears him right back and hammers away. Hardy is quickly on the floor (some hero) and Ethan drives him into various objects for an early four. A suplex onto the ramp allows Ethan to set up a pair of tables. Matt puts Ethan on both of them but gets caught on the top with a right hand. Instead Matt suplexes him back inside and we take a break.
Back with a ladder in the ring and Matt scoring with the Side Effect. Matt gets another table but takes way too long setting up the ladder, allowing Carter to grab a Russian legsweep. The fans are split on who to cheer for her as Ethan goes up and splashes Matt through the table. Matt gets up and hits a quick Twist of Fate for about seven, followed by a low blow. Now the fans are booing Hardy and Matt isn't pleased.
Ethan is up at seven so Matt gives him another Twist of Fate through one of the tables at ringside. That's only good for a nine though so Matt puts a chair around Ethan's neck for another Twist of Fate. Carter is bleeding from the mouth but gets up at nine again, ony to fall at ten.
With nothing else working, Matt goes to his wife and gets a hammer out of her bag. Ethan ducks the death shot and hits Matt low, setting up a 1%er. Cue Tyrus to turn on Carter with a Big Ending, which gives Matt another nine count. Ok you've done the big heel spot and you did the turn. Just change the stupid title already. Ethan goes after Tyrus but Matt blasts him with the belt, finally giving him the win at 19:45.
Post break, Matt says he beat the unbeatable for himself. He came back here to help but he's done listening to all these people because none of them matter. All that matters is the title and his wife because this is the era of Big Money Matt. With Carter still down (that was one heck of a belt shot), Matt gives him a Conchairto to close the show.
Jeff Hardy b. Tyrus via DQ when Tyrus shoved the referee
Gail Kim b. Awesome Pin after throwing Jade onto Kongo
Beer Money b. Eli Drake/Jesse Godderz DWI to Godderz
Mike Bennett b. Pepper Parks Divine Intervention
Matt Hardy b. Ethan Carter III Carter couldn't answer the ten count
Date: January 20, 2016
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: Tom Phillips, Corey Graves
We're in a bit of a weird point in NXT as it's still a few months before the next announced Takeover and we're just starting to set up the big feuds before we get to the really big feuds. Next week it's Baron Corbin vs. Samoa Joe vs. Sami Zayn for the #1 contendership so odds are they'll get some focus tonight. Let's get to it.
Sami Zayn vs. Adam Rose
Sami works on a wristlock to start and spins around into an armbar. We're already well into the OLE chants but Rose cuts them off with a kick to the head. Some elbow drops set up a chinlock on Sami but he's quickly on his feet. Rose chops him right back down though and drops a top rope headbutt for two before choking on the ropes. Sami shrugs those off as well though and grabs a Koji Clutch out of nowhere for the submission at 5:27.
Johnny Gargano says he isn't intimidated by a bully like Samoa Joe. His solution: punch Joe in the mouth. As long as his heart is beating, Johnny Wrestling will not back down.
Chad Gable and Jason Jordan talk about not being nominated for Tag Team of the Year while Blake and Murphy were on the list. They know they're getting better and they're going to the top. Another word for top is alpha and they're both Americans, so they might as well be called American Alpha.
Tye Dillinger vs. Apollo Crews
Dillinger's entrance is even more energetic than usual here. They circle each other a bit to start until Dillinger takes him down with a wristlock. A headlock puts Crews on the mat and it's time for a quick victory lap with Tye giving himself a ten. That earns him a delayed vertical suplex with Crews only slipping a bit as Dillinger knees him in the head. It's a bit more impressive than when Lashley does it. Dillinger rolls outside but slide back in to hit a dive on Crews. Something like a Codebreaker gets two on Apollo but he pops back up and hits his lifting sitout powerbomb for the pin at 4:35.
Post match Crews says he's had something on his mind for a few weeks now. He isn't one to have a match end in a disqualification. Now he knows he hasn't earned a title shot, but he'd love to face Finn Balor one more time, even in a non-title match.
Alexa Bliss isn't happy with Blake and Murphy losing in London but she's going to lead by example tonight when she teams with Emma and beats up Bayley and Carmella.
We get a Vaudevillains vignette with the two of them looking very angry.
Stills of Kevin Owens appearing at the NXT Milwaukee house show.
Baron Corbin vs. Rich Swann
Swann is a longtime indy talent who recently signed with NXT. Corbin throws him into the corner to start and backdrops him into a 450. Off to something like a Tazmission from Corbin before Rich starts using some speed to avoids a few charges. A spinning kick to the face gets two on Corbin but Rich misses something off the top and charges into a big swinging Rock Bottom (called Deep Six) for the pin at 3:14.
Bayley and Carmella are ready for their tag match tonight when Dawson and Wilder come in to say Carmella is a loser just like Enzo and Cass. Carmella is so upset that she's being driven bananas (her words) but Bayley says save it for the match.
Carmella/Bayley vs. Emma/Alexa Bliss
Dana is here with Emma/Bliss. Emma gets in a cheap shot on Bayley and the champ's ribs are damaged before the opening bell. Bayley starts anyway but is quickly dragged into the corner and stomped in the corner with the villains staying on the bad ribs. We take an early break and come back with Bliss holding Bayley in an armbar. Bayley gets up and hits a quick middle rope dropkick which only hurts her ribs even more. Emma breaks up the hot tag attempt and gets suplexed as a result, only to have Dana offer a distraction to prevent another tag attempt.
The Emma Sandwich (called a cross body in the corner) stays on the ribs and it's back to Bliss for another armbar, even though Bayley's hand is grabbing the ropes. Bliss drags her away and that's good enough for the referee for some reason. Bayley fights out of the corner though and tags in Carmella to take over on Bliss as things speed up. Carmella's little dance sets up a Bronco Buster and the leg crossface makes Bliss tap at 9:26.
Balor agrees to give Crews a non-title match.
Johnny Gargano vs. Samoa Joe
The fans start a JOHNNY WRESTLING chant which is such an awesome name. Joe drives him into the corner to start and grinds his forearm over Johnny's face before elbowing him in the jaw. Gargano snaps off a quick enziguri to put Joe on the floor, only to have him kick Johnny's leg out to take over again. The snap jabs have Gargano in trouble again and Joe kicks the leg out one more time, sending Gargano into a near 360.
Another kick puts Gargano on the floor but he dives in at nine with Graves ripping on him for going back to the beating. Back in and a quick enziguri and DDT stagger Joe but he kicks Gargano out of the air on a slingshot attempt. Gargano is already knocked silly so the Koquina Clutch puts him out of his misery at 4:30.
Sami Zayn b. Adam Rose Koji Clutch
Apollo Crews b. Tye Dillinger Lifting sitout powerbomb
Baron Corbin b. Rich Swann Deep Six
Carmella/Bayley b. Emma/Alexa Bliss Leg crossface to Bliss
Samoa Joe b. Johnny Gargano Koquina Clutch
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