KASSIUS OHNO VS. KONA REEVES
Kona Reeves doesn’t connect with me one bit. I don’t know if Ohno is becoming a heel or a more aggressive face. My money is on a full heel turn. Reeves seems like a good dude and I want almost everyone to succeed, but this gimmick doesn’t seem to be working at all. Ohno makes quick work of Reeves with a rolling elbow and you can see the change in his disposition. More about the psychology here than the wrestling. He cuts an almost-heel promo that gets a cheer from the crowd, saying that he was the new guy and got a lot of buzz, but there’s always someone new, and he’ll be there to knock out that next new guy.
Match Rating: Three Gold Medals
Promo Rating: Five Stone Colds
THE FORGOTTEN SONS VS. STREET PROFITS
I was wondering who these guys were in Regal’s office last week, and now I know it’s The Forgotten Sons. An obvious Sons of Anarchy reference, they have a great look and a bad attitude at first glance. My first thought when they made their entrance was “future champs.” That’s a good thing for them. I expect them to get a heel win over Street Profits here. So this is what happened to Wesley Blake.
Street Profits are so much fun, and I love Montez Ford just because he married Bianca Belair. As for The Forgotten Sons, Wesley Blake had been an NXT Tag Team Champion with Buddy Murphy, now of 205 Live, managed by Alexa Bliss. I think I remember Steve Cutler wrestling as an enhancement talent against featured performers, but I don’t know Jaxson Ryker at all. Mauro mentions that he’s the new guy.
There was some good action early in this match but that graduates to mostly rest holds by both teams, until Angelo Dawkins gets the hot tag for Street Profits. Dawkins ends up launched into the ring steps, then Ford gets distracted the The Mighty in ski masks and by Ryker on the outside. A knee drop/inverted DDT finisher by the Sons get them a TV debut win as Cutler oozes blood from his nose.
Match Rating: Six Gold Medals
Regal is questioning Heavy Machinery. Dozovic is hilarious as he talks about breaking the toilet after shitting out his morning coffee.
Ricochet and Pete Dunne want each other’s titles. In two weeks we get champion vs. champion. That’s AWESOME.
KAIRI SANE VS. TRISH ADORA
Kairi Sane is adorable, and I love that she keeps her championship in a treasure chest with pirate booty. Adora looks bad ass. I’d like to see her get at least a little big of offense in here instead of this being a total squash. She doesn’t get much in at all, but she at least seems to be pretty good at selling. I guess it makes sense to have the champion completely dominate a newcomer in her first match, but I’d like to see what she can do. I’m sure this won’t be the last we see of her.
Shayna Baszler comes out and knocks over Sane’s treasure chest. She clotheslines the hell out of Sane and is wearing a sleeveless Bad Religion shirt, which, needless to say, is fucking awesome. Sane fights back and takes her out with an Interceptor spear.
Match Rating: Five Gold Medals
BACKSTAGE PROMO: TOMMASO CIAMPA
Such a terrific promo, especially when he gives his reasons for doing the promos and his time instead of going out and listening to the crowd.
Promo Rating: Eight Jake Roberts
Lars Sullivan is cleared, and gets Raul Mendoza again. WTF did Mendoza do to deserve that?
VELVETEEN DREAM VS. JOHNNY GARGANO
These guys are both terrific workers and we get a great back-and-forth match. Gargano hits a great slingshot spear through the middle rope, a superkick on the apron, and an amazing jumping neckbreaker from the apron to the floor that saw him miss landing on the corner of the steel steps by probably mere inches. I held my breath as he landed. Dream recovers with a Fame-Ass-er for a two count. They follow it up with an excellent sequence, rolling through each other’s moves and pins ending with Johnny hitting a discus clothesline for a two count.
After exchanging punches and kicks on the apron, Dream throws Gargano at the steps and Johnny smacks his injured knee on the steel. Dream hits his spinning DDT for a two count before going to work on destroying Johnny’s knee. He goes for the same elbow drop on the apron that got him the win in Brooklyn, but Johnny moves and Dream smacks his elbow. Johnny hits a suicide dive and locks in the Gargano Escape on the outside before realizing he was about to get counted out.
Johnny starts to go a little nuts and is about to hit a DDT from the apron to the floor before he snaps back to it and rolls into the ring. Dream calls him Johnny Failure and he goes for the running knee strike, but Dream catches him with the rolling driver for the win. Wow, the storyline of what’s going on inside Johnny’s head is great. It cost him this match and got Dream the biggest win of his career. Half of the crowd chants “Johnny Wrestling” while the other half chants “Johnny Failure.” That really sucks but I think that they will play into those crowd chants to make the storyline even better.
Match Rating: Seven Gold Medals
Overall Show Rating: Six Gold Medals