Monday Monday Night Raw Date: January 23, 2017 Location: Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, Ohio Commentators: Michael Cole, Byron Saxton, Corey Graves It's the go home show for the Royal Rumble and that's the best thing that could happen right now. The build has taken quite a long time and it would be a good idea to get us done with the show so we can move on to the build towards Wrestlemania. It would also help to know what we can expect from the biggest show of the year. Let's get to it. We open with a recap of Roman Reigns losing the US Title two weeks back. Here's Reigns to open things up with the shark cage in the ring with him. Reigns says in six days, 40,000 people are going to pack the Alamo Dome when he wins the Universal Title. This brings out Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho with the former talking about all the people Reigns has powerbombed through the announcers' table. Owens is the only person to powerbomb him back and Jericho talks about being stuck in the cage like a sexy salami in a deli. This leads to Reigns wanting his rematch for the US Title tonight and Owens accepts on Jericho's behalf. Owens throws in a psychic prediction: tonight it's Reigns locked in that cage. Cesaro vs. Luke Gallows Join us as we continue the theory of let's have four guys fight over and over and over and then expect people to want to see the pay per view match. Cesaro throws him down and puts a forearm in the face for two but Gallows hits a running charge in the corner. We take a break and come back with Anderson having been ejected for interference and Cesaro muscling Gallows up for a suplex. The threat of the Swing sends Gallows to the ropes so Cesaro settles for the Sharpshooter. Cue Anderson to kick Sheamus in the head, which of course means the referee doesn't see Gallows tap (that finish is WAY overused), allowing Gallows to come back with a big boot. The flapjack gives Gallows the pin at 8:45. Mick Foley is on the phone with Stephanie McMahon when Sami Zayn comes in. Sami wants to enter the Royal Rumble but Stephanie says that's not how it works. Oh here we go. Sami has to beat Seth Rollins to get in. This has been your weekly reminder that Stephanie is the real power in WWE. Stephanie also has something in mind for Rollins. Earlier today, Bayley sat down to talk about Sunday's match with Charlotte. She doesn't understand why Charlotte is so down on her being a lifelong wrestling fan but Bayley is bringing the Bayley Buddies and all of her fans to San Antonio to take the title. Mick comes in to see Rollins and tells him about the match with Sami. However, if Rollins loses, Sami gets Seth's spot. This has been your weekly reminder that Stephanie is the puppet master and gets to smile and laugh while we just get to watch. Sami Zayn vs. Seth Rollins Only the winner goes to the Rumble. It's a feeling out process to start as the announcers talk about how these two used to be friends and even roomates. Neither can get anywhere in the first few minutes so Seth turns it into a fist fight and scores with a suicide dive as we take a break. Back with Seth missing the springboard knee and getting caught in the Blue Thunder Bomb so CUE THE CROWD REACTION SHOTS!!! A Michinoku Driver gets two more on Seth but Rollins runs the corner and throws Sami down for the Blockbuster. Seth grabs the Falcon's Arrow for two more and a jumping knee to the face just sounds painful. There's the Sling Blade but Sami reverses the Pedigree into a tornado DDT. The Helluva Kick misses but Sami backdrops him to the floor for a big crash. Back in and a sunset powerbomb gets two more on Seth, followed by the exploder into the corner. Rollins bails to the apron and manages a Pedigree to knock Sami cold.....and here's HHH. Or at least his music hits, allowing Sami to small package Rollins at 15:57. Video on Shawn Michaels winning the 1995 Royal Rumble. Rollins is livid and demands that Foley figure out what's going on. Foley says it wasn't him but Rollins is going to find out. TJ Perkins/Jack Gallagher/Mustafa Ali vs. Tony Nese/Drew Gulak/Ariya Daivari We get a quick video on Ali before the match. Perkins and Gulak get things going and we start in a hurry with TJ flipping around, only to get kicked in the ribs in the corner. Nese misses a moonsault though and it's off to Ali for a rolling neckbreaker. Everything breaks down and Ali's inverted 450 puts Gulak away at 3:51. Here's New Day for a chat. They want to become Universal Champion at Wrestlemania but cue Enzo and Big Cass to cut them off. Cass is going to be in the Royal Rumble as well, which seems to greatly please the fans. Rusev, Jinder Mahal and Lana (who has hacked off a lot of her hair) interrupt with Rusev wondering why Big E. and Big Cass have to add Big to their names. You don't hear Rusev call himself handsome do you? Titus O'Neil cuts them off and New Day's annoyed reactions are hilarious. Woods offers to meet Titus outside in a reference I don't quite get. Anyway there's an eight man tag...but there are only seven men in the ring. Woods points out that the fourth option is Lana (BIG pop for that suggestion) but he wants to know who the real fourth partner is. New Day/Enzo Amore/Big Cass vs. Jinder Mahal/Rusev/Titus O'Neil/Braun Strowman Joined in progress with Kofi in trouble until a jawbreaker frees him up. It's not enough to get past Titus though who hits a sloppy Dominator. Mahal gives up the hot tag though and it's off to Cass. The Bada Boom Shaka Lacka is broken up and everything breaks down with Big E.'s spear through the ropes being blocked. Kofi hits a big dive onto a pile of people on the floor....but it leaves Braun to face Enzo. Amore actually gets out of the powerslam but his middle rope DDT is countered into said powerslam for the pin at 4:35 shown. Post match here's Big Show for the showdown with Strowman. We recap the opening sequence. US Title: Roman Reigns vs. Chris Jericho Jericho is defending but Reigns starts fast and knocks him to the floor for a running dropkick. Back from an early break with Owens on commentary and telling Byron to shut up. Naturally we LOOK AT THE ANNOUNCERS' TABLE TO SEE PEOPLE TALKING while the match is going on. Jericho grabs a chinlock as the announcers pepper Owens about his upcoming title defense. Ever the arrogant heel, Jericho slaps Reigns in the face a few times so Roman uppercuts him out of the air. The Samoan drop into a rollup is botched so Jericho hammers away, only to have the drop hit a few seconds later. The Superman Punch is countered with a dropkick but the Codebreaker is easily powered away. Now the Superman Punch connects but Owens comes in for the DQ at 9:45. Post match Reigns is beaten down but manages to lock Owens in the cage and spear Jericho. Coolish moment I guess, though wouldn't it make more sense to have Jericho locked in the cage and beat Owens down as a preview for Sunday? Back from a break with Jericho letting Owens out of the cage. As a bonus, Sunday's match will now be No DQ. Kevin is furious. In another sitdown interview, Charlotte talks about being backstage for major shows while Bayley was watching on the couch. Charlotte had an amazing athletic background and yeah, she and Bayley used to be friends. Bayley was the heart and soul of NXT but now she has the audacity to think she's on Charlotte's level. Then Bayley is going to lose and will remember that she's just a fan. Nia Jax vs. Ray Lyn Nia runs her over in the corner and hits something like a Banzai Drop for the pin at 28 seconds. Post match Nia dedicates her win to Sasha Banks' recently deceased career. Now that Nia has broken the Boss....and never mind because here's Banks on a crutch. Sasha hits her in the ankle with the crutch and actually gets in a double knee shot to drop the monster. We look at Rollins losing his Rumble spot again. Emmalina video. Rich Swann vs. Noam Dar Non-title and Alicia Fox is with Dar. Swann flips over him to start and sends Dar outside, only to have Noam hide behind Fox. We come back from a break with Swann fighting out of a chinlock and ankle scissoring him off the top. The spinning kick to the head ends Dar at 5:54. Not enough shown to rate but this was just a workout for Swann. Swann wants Neville out here and we get Neville all the way to the apron, only to have Rich dive through the ropes to start the fight. Referees break it up but this was a really well done segment and actually made me want to see the match. Well done. Cedric Alexander vs. Neville is announced for 205 Live. Alexander is ready to talk about his match when Fox and Dar come in. Alicia knows Cedric is jealous of Dar, who will always be a winner as long as he has her in his corner. A lot of screeching ensues so Cedric walks away. Here's Goldberg for the closing segment. The chants cut him off and Goldberg seems to forget his lines a few times. He finally gets them right by talking about facing twenty nine other men in the Royal Rumble for the right to face Owens or Reigns. Cue Paul Heyman to talk about who Goldberg might be facing on Sunday. It could be Randy Orton, Braun Strowman or even this man: Brock Lesnar. Brock comes out while Heyman keeps talking but Goldberg says get in here. The fight is almost on when the gong strikes. Undertaker shows up and we get the big three way staredown to end the show. Results Luke Gallows b. Cesaro Flapjack Sami Zayn b. Seth Rollins Small package Mustafa Ali/Jack Gallagher/TJ Perkins b. Ariya Daivari/Tony Nese/Drew Gulak Inverted 450 to Gulak Jinder Mahal/Rusev/Titus O'Neil/Braun Strowman b. New Day/Enzo Amore/Big Cass Powerslam to Amore Roman Reigns b. Chris Jericho via DQ when Kevin Owens interfered Nia Jax b. Ray Lyn Banzai Drop Rich Swann b. Noam Dar Spinning kick to the head Tuesday Nothing. Smackdown Date: January 24, 2017 Location: Huntington Center, Toledo, Ohio Commentators: Mauro Ranallo, John Bradshaw Layfield, Tom Phillips, David Otunga It's the final show before the Royal Rumble and that means we might be in for a few more announcements for the big battle royal. At the moment, twenty one names have been announced and most of them are from Monday Night Raw. A few more Smackdown names wouldn't hurt anything and could be on the way tonight. Let's get to it. We open with Miz complaining to Daniel Bryan that he and Maryse don't have their own private dressing room. Miz wants to know what will be done for someone with his star power so Bryan offers to curtain off a stall in the men's room. Bryan gives him a better offer: a rematch for the Intercontinental Title against Dean Ambrose. Miz suggests a No DQ match but Bryan thinks a lumberjack match would be better. We get a long recap on Randy Orton joining the Wyatt Family and the team's issues since. Randy Orton vs. Luke Harper Bray is sitting in his rocking chair and stoically looking ahead. Orton elbows Harper in the jaw to start and they head outside for nothing in particular. Back in and Orton kicks him in the face to set up the elevated DDT. Harper's neck seems to be a bit banged up as they head outside again with Luke kicking Orton in the face. Bray throws both of them back inside and it's off to a break. Back with Orton fighting out of a chinlock and scoring with a superplex. Harper grabs his Michinoku Driver and kicks Orton in the face for two, drawing a smile from Bray. Orton gets two off a rollup so Harper tries the discus lariat, only to get caught in the RKO for the pin at 9:50. Post match Wyatt gives Harper Sister Abigail. The announcers aren't sure if Harper is out of the Family or if it was just tough love. Recap of last week's cage match and Mickie James being revealed as La Luchadora. Renee Young brings out Mickie James to explain her actions from last week. She reads off her resume but Renee says that isn't enough. Mickie doesn't like having to explain herself because this Divas Revolution is nonsense. The only person that sees things the right way is Alexa Bliss, who has been fighting against the Revolution since it started. Becky Lynch is nothing special and Mickie would love to fight her anytime. Cue Becky to chase Mickie into the crowd but Alexa jumps her to start the double beatdown. Last week, Carmella took James Ellsworth on a shopping spree. James wasn't sure about the prices but Carmella insists. First up: pants. Ellsworth starts with jeans but Carmella isn't happy. Various other goofy outfits ensue so Carmella finally takes over with the help of Dante the fashion guy. Eventually it's decided to make him into someone who belongs on Jersey Shore and that's it. Battle Royal Heath Slater, Rhyno, Tyler Breeze, Fandango, Simon Gotch, Aiden English, Konnor, Viktor, Mojo Rawley, Curt Hawkins The winner is in the Rumble and Baron Corbin is on commentary. English and Gotch are out in the first five seconds and Mojo punches Hawkins out next. Slater and Viktor get rid of each other, followed by Mojo helping to get rid of Rhyno and Konnor. Mojo superkicks Fandango out and backdrops Breeze to the floor for the win at 3:15. Nikki Bella was walking into the arena earlier when she explained that she and John Cena just happened to be next to her on the side of the production truck. Natalya comes up and lays Nikki out. Here's AJ Styles to call out John Cena. Before he gets there though, he has an issue with the Royal Rumble poster. Cena is up near the front and Styles is almost in the back of a big group shot. Now it's Cena, who looks to have some new gear. Earlier this week, Styles turned on the Today Show and saw Cena as guest host. Cena talked about facing some guy from Atlanta and the incredibly marky host is confident Cena will win. AJ doesn't like being referred to as just some guy and says no one has missed Cena. John is a sorry excuse for a wrestler so Cena finally goes on a rant about how he's been around for ten years while AJ has only been hot for six months. AJ might have been great on the indies but Cena was built for WWE and gets more done in one day than AJ does in a year. If Styles is so mad about the poster, learn how to Photoshop. AJ is just like everyone else: wanting to be Cena when he just can't do it. Kalisto vs. Dolph Ziggler The superkick ends Kalisto in 48 seconds. Post match Ziggler grabs a chair but JBL stands up, allowing Apollo Crews to really chase Ziggler off. Naomi vs. Natalya No match as Nikki attacks Natalya in the back. Naomi says she wants to fight someone so here's Alexa....to says he won't do it either. Dean Ambrose says there aren't enough lumberjacks in the world to stop him from beating Miz tonight. Intercontinental Title: Miz vs. Dean Ambrose Ambrose is defending in the Rumble. Dean threatens Dirty Deeds to send Miz outside and the lumberjacks pummel him. That's only good for two though and we take an early break. Back with Miz sending Dean to the floor a few times, followed by the YES Kicks. Dean comes back with the top rope elbow for two and it's time for the lumberjacks to beat on Miz even more. Back in and Maryse grabs Dean's leg, setting up a running knee ala Daniel Bryan (JBL says that's how Bryan won the title at Wrestlemania because JBL isn't as smart as he thinks) for two more. Miz is sent to the floor again and Dean dives on the big pile. The fans think this is awesome as Dean hits the rebound lariat for two, only to have everyone come in for.....absolutely nothing because ten guys coming in and attacking both wrestlers isn't a DQ. Dirty Deeds ends Miz at 12:15. Ambrose poses to end the show. Results Randy Orton b. Luke Harper RKO Mojo Rawley won a battle royal last eliminating Tyler Breeze Dolph Ziggler b. Kalisto Superkick Dean Ambrose b. Miz Dirty Deeds Wednesday NXT Date: January 25, 2017 Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida Commentators: Percy Watson, Corey Graves, Tom Phillips It's the go home show for Takeover: San Antonio and that means we're in for the final push towards a card that isn't the strongest in the world. However, that seems to be where NXT shines. They just know how to turn something that might not look the best into something that's a lot of fun. Tonight's focus seems to be on the Women's Title match so let's get to it. Ember Moon vs. Liv Morgan They start faster than expected with some small packages getting two each. Morgan misses a charge into the corner though and Moon blasts her in the face with a jumping knee. It's off to a Crossface until Morgan fights up and gets a bulldog. A guillotine choke has Moon in more trouble than she's ever been in....so she throws Morgan over the top for a big crash. The Eclipse is good for the pin at 4:00. Andrade Cien Almas is in the back when Roderick Strong says he's ready to go right now. Almas beats him down without much effort. Long video on DIY vs. Authors of Pain. No Way Jose vs. Kona Reeves Jose dances out of a waistlock to start and the threat of a right hand sends Reeves into the corner. Reeves suckers him in with the offer of a dance and hammers away, setting up a Samoan drop for two. Some surfing on Jose's back doesn't really do much, allowing him to come back with a series of right hands. A pop up right hand finishes Reeves at 4:04. Post match Elias Samson comes out with a song but Jose suggests something else and sings YOUR SONG SUCKS to the beat of his theme song. Samson gets punched in the face. Chris Atkins vs. Eric Young I've heard Atkins' music (something about putting your hands up if you're scared to fly) somewhere before but I can't place it. A Sanity distraction lets Young jump him from behind and the beating is on in a hurry. Young chokes in the corner and drops a middle rope elbow to the back. The wheelbarrow neckbreaker ends Atkins at 1:54. Young shouts about choices and Damo crushes Atkins again. We look at the Revival destroying Shane Thorn's knee. Thorn had surgery earlier this week and will be out seven to nine months. I love that WWE seems to be bringing back the idea of crediting someone with injuring wrestlers. Thorn was going to be out no matter what so let Revival get some heat on it instead of just letting Thorn go on the shelf and be forgotten. Video on Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Bobby Roode. William Regal is here to keep an eye on the four way interview to hype up the Women's Title match. Billie Kay and Peyton Royce come out first and say you know what the two of them can do. Asuka has already taken a beating and Nikki is just crazy so there's no way both of them are losing. Nikki doesn't say anything and it's Asuka coming out for the big showdown with Cross. The Aussies jump them from behind and that goes as well as you would expect. Security is easily dispatched and Asuka kicks Nikki in the head. Security pulls Asuka to the floor and Cross dives on the pile. Billie and Peyton look terrified to end the show. Results Ember Moon b. Liv Morgan Ecclipse No Way Jose b. Kona Reeves Pop Up Right Hand Eric Young b. Chris Atkins Wheelbarrow neckbreaker Thursday Impact Wrestling Date: January 26, 2017 Location: Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida Commentators: D'Angelo Dinero, Josh Matthews Tonight is billed as Genesis, which is likely to be another show that doesn't really add anything special but will be treated like something interesting while still being a normal show. We'll throw in two title matches with Lashley vs. Eddie Edwards in an Iron Man match and Rosemary vs. Jade in a Monster's Ball match. Let's get to it. Here are the Hardys with something to say. Matt, who sounds like he has a very sore throat, talks about Brother Nero (There was a video on YouTube where Matt freed Jeff from being Brother Nero. Are we not even following TNA's own continuity here?) winning the #1 case last week. Jeff thinks he might win the World Title again but Matt has a big idea: going around the world and winning all the Tag Team Titles they can (as revealed to him in a pre-mo-nition as he and his family ate Senor Benjamin's green beans by the Lake of Reincarnation). Cue the DCC to imply they'll be cashing in their Race for the Case match against the Hardys next week. Before any violence can take place, here's Decay. Crazzy Steve suggests a triple threat for tonight and the DCC immediately agrees. Matt says that even though these are some rude blokes, the match is on. Tag Team Titles: Hardys vs. DCC vs. Decay The Hardys are defending. Joined in progress with the DCC working over Steve as the announcers talk about Don West's insane deals. The hot tag brings in Abyss and LET'S PLUG SCHITT'S CREEK! Jeff comes back in and drops Abyss but the DCC takes over on him in the corner. That means James Storm can distract Matt so a non-tag can take place. Everything breaks down and Kingston gives Matt an STO for two. Steve mists Kingston and it's a Twist of Fate to retain the titles at 7:00. Laurel Van Ness makes Braxton Sutter take her to dinner. Apparently they're at a restaurant, which looks so fake that I didn't realize that's where they were supposed to be until Laurel ordered a glass of wine. Here's Drew Galloway to talk about how much he wants the Grand Championship to be the top title around here. That means an open challenge. Grand Championship: Drew Galloway vs. Moose Drew is defending and Josh asks how ironic this is. Uh, a guy who got screwed out of a title last week answering an open challenge isn't ironic you stupid man. Moose goes right at him to start and hits something like a powerbomb. A moonsault almost completely misses but is still good for two. Moose sends him outside and the fight is on with Moose easily getting the better of it. Galloway gets dropped on the barricade and Moose wins round one. That's enough to send the champ walking up the ramp but he comes back in to start round two. The middle rope chokebomb and the Game Changer get two each but Drew kicks him low again, meaning Galloway loses a point. The Claymore connects for two so Drew shoves the referee down and kicks Moose low again, setting up the Futureshock to retain at 6:46. Laurel continues to be a blithering idiot and Sutter drinks a lot of wine to cope. Knockouts Title: Rosemary vs. Jade Rosemary is defending but Jade dives at her to take over. Some kendo stick shots to the back have Jade in trouble but she blocks a suplex onto the thumbtacks. Instead, Jade whips her in the back with a belt before the German suplex puts Rosemary into the tacks. Jade gets smart by blocking the mist with a trashcan lid, which she kicks into the champ's face for two. It's time for the barbed wire board and a release STO makes Rosemary scream again. That means it's time for a regular table but Jade takes too much time going up top, setting up a superplex to drive Jade through for the pin at 9:25. Gail Kim comes out to check on Jade and Rosemary mists her. Laurel offers some post dinner shenanigans to Braxton but he goes to find the check. With Braxton gone, Laurel calls Maria to tell her it's going great. Caleb Konley is making his debut and got his start watching wrestling his entire life. X-Division Title: DJZ vs. Trevor Lee vs. Andrew Everett vs. Marshe Rockett vs. Caleb Konley DJZ is defending and it's one fall to a finish. Josh's brilliant insight: DJZ would love to successfully defend his X-Division Championship. Everyone brawls with everyone to start and then, in what might be the dumbest, most contrived spot I've ever see, we get a Human Centipede style elevated DDT with three people grabbing someone's head back to back until DJZ grabs a running neckbreaker to drive everyone down. That's the kind of ridiculous stuff that makes it so clear that everyone is working together because there is NO WAY that could work otherwise. Everyone hits a bunch of dives and the Helms Dynasty starts working together, only to get in a fight over who gets to cover. The ZDT to Everett retains DJZ's title at 4:21. The Helms Dynasty Pillmanizes DJZ's leg. Edwards asks Davey Richards to let him defend the title on his own. Davey agrees but doesn't look happy. Open Fight Night video. The Hardys go over some possible matches for Jeff's Race for the Chase match. He doesn't care for the idea of winning the X-Division Title because it would only feed his addiction so DELETE. Rosemary and Ricky Morton are deleted as well but Matt has a pre-mo-nition showing him who Jeff will pick. TNA World Title: Eddie Edwards vs. Lashley Lashley is challenging in a thirty minute Iron Man match. Lashley starts fast with a delayed vertical suplex but Eddie avoids the spear and kicks him out to the floor. Back in and Lashley gets two off a slam and we take a break. Lashley is still in control when we come back and the spear gives him the first fall at 8:40. The slow pace continues as Lashley hammers away, only to get caught in a Blue Thunder Bomb. A half crab doesn't do much damage to Lashley so he throws Eddie over the top with a release belly to belly suplex. Lashley powerbombs him on the ramp for a countout at 14:25 to make it 2-0. With the referee checking on Eddie, Lashley takes off a turnbuckle pad. For no apparent reason, Lashley keeps going to the ropes and knocking Eddie off the apron as this just keeps going. Back from a second break with Lashley missing a spear and going into the exposed buckle, allowing Eddie to grab a rollup for a fall at 22:20. They head to the ramp again with Lashley loading up a release German suplex, only to have Edwards flip out onto his feet. There's the Boston Knee Party but Eddie has to very slowly crawl back to the ring. Lashley dives in at nine to beat the count but it's another Boston Knee Party to tie things up at 24:03. A few seconds later JB says we have five minutes left as they're actually closer than I was expecting. Lashley gets two off another spear, which of course is followed by a third Boston Knee Party for two more. Eddie's middle rope hurricanrana is countered into a powerbomb and Lashley grabs a side choke to make Eddie tap at 26:40 to go up 3-2 with just over three minutes to go. Lashley goes outside to yell at Pope and says he's already won. That means another suicide dive to take Lashley out and Eddie grabs a guillotine with 51 seconds left. Of course time runs out (at 29:33) to give Lashley the title back. Results Hardys b. DCC and Decay Twist of Fate to Kingston Drew Galloway b. Moose Futureshock Rosemary b. Jade Superplex through a table DJZ b. Trevor Lee, Andrew Everett, Marshe Rockett and Caleb Konley ZDT to Everett Lashley b. Eddie Edwards three falls to two Friday Nothing.