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Spandex and Suplexes: A Wrestling Review Issue #37

Welcome everyone to the thirty-seventh edition of Spandex and Suplexes: A Wrestling Review. I cover a week that saw the continued build to WWE Extreme Rules, the final build to AEW Fyter Fest, the NXT North American Championship on the line, and a tribute to the legendary career of The Undertaker.

 

WWE Raw:

Drew McIntyre answers Dolph Ziggler’s challenge for his WWE Championship
Credit: WWE

Results:
1. The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford) (c) defeated The Viking Raiders (Erik and Ivar) to retain the WWE Raw Tag Team Championships
2. Asuka (c) defeated Charlotte Flair by submission to retain the WWE Raw Women’s Championship
3. Akira Tozawa defeated R-Truth (c) to become the new WWE 24/7 Champion after interference by Bobby Lashley and MVP
4. Natalya defeated Liv Morgan by submission
5. Bayley and Sasha Banks (c) defeated The IIconics (Peyton Royce and Billie Kay) by submission to retain the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships
6. Apollo Crews defeated Shelton Benjamin

Thoughts: In the opening segment, WWE Champion Drew McIntyre was interrupted by Dolph Ziggler who revealed that in exchange for SmackDown gaining AJ Styles, Raw got Ziggler and his tag team partner, Robert Roode. Dolph then brought up his shared history with Drew and took credit for the Scotsman’s success since his return to WWE. Due to this, Ziggler claimed that McIntyre owed him a match for the WWE Championship. Drew the claimed that Dolph was simply entitled, but agreed to have the title match as he is a fighting champion. The match was later made official for WWE Extreme Rules on July 19th. While no one truly believes that it will be The Show Off who ends The Scottish Psychopath’s championship run, it should still be an excellent match between two men with a lot of history to build a great feud around.

After Bayley and Sasha Banks’ victory over The IIconics, Banks admitted that she was jealous of Bayley having two titles and that she wanted to be a double champion as well. After teasing that she was going to challenge Bayley for her WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship, Sasha instead challenged Asuka to a match at Extreme Rules for the WWE Raw Women’s Championship. Asuka then came out and accepted before she was double teamed and laid out by the WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions. Asuka vs. Banks should be a great match with the outcome serving as a good means to continue the slow build to the breakup of Bayley and Banks’ partnership.

Overall, this was a great episode of Monday Night Raw with the highlights being the opening McIntyre/Ziggler segment, the WWE Raw Tag Team Championship match, Asuka vs. Flair, Edge and Randy Orton’s backstage promos, Sasha Banks challenging Asuka, Big Show confronting Orton and Ric Flair on behalf of Edge and Christian, and Rey Mysterio and friends getting the upper hand on Seth Rollins and his disciples.

 

WWE NXT:

My Match of the Week: Keith Lee vs. Finn Bálor vs. Johnny Gargano for the NXT North American Championship
Credit: WWE

Results:
1. Cameron Grimes defeated Damian Priest
2. Santos Escobar defeated Jake Atlas
3. Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez defeated Kayden Carter and Kacy Catanzaro by submission
4. Karrion Kross defeated Bronson Reed by submission
5. Rhea Ripley defeated Aliyah
6. Dexter Lumis defeated Roderick Strong by countout
7. Keith Lee (c) defeated Finn Bálor and Johnny Gargano in a Triple Threat match to retain the NXT North American Championship

Thoughts: As a result of Keith Lee successfully defending his NXT North American Championship against Finn Bálor and Johnny Gargano in what is my Match of the Week, Lee will now face NXT Champion Adam Cole in two weeks in a Champion vs. Champion Winner Take All match for both titles. I predict that it will be The Limitless One who will finally end the record breaking reign of the leader of The Undisputed Era as there is no other faces for Cole to conquer. Lee is a massive star and would be the perfect choice to become the first man to hold both the NXT and North American Championships simultaneously as well as the next face of the yellow brand.

Overall this was a good episode of NXT with the highlights being Dexter Lumis’ continued mind games against the Undisputed Era and the main event.

 

All Elite Wrestling:

Chris Jericho and Orange Cassidy face off
Credit: AEW

Results:
1. Wardlow defeated Luchasaurus in a Lumberjack match
2. Hikaru Shida defeated Red Velvet
3. Brodie Lee and Colt Cabana defeated Joey Janela and Sonny Kiss after interference by The Dark Order (John Silver and Alex Reynolds)
4. FTR (Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler) defeated SCU (Christopher Daniels and Frankie Kazarian)
5. Brian Cage defeated Jon Cruz
6. Matt Hardy defeated Santana

Thoughts: Six matches were set up and announced for both night of AEW Fyter Fest with night one set for next week. First, after Wardlow stole the win from Luchasaurus with a well-timed low blow, it was announced that Jurassic Express (Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus) will take on MJF and Wardlow on night one. Second, after Lance Archer brutally beat down Joey Janela and Sonny Kiss after their match, it was announced that Archer will take on Janela on night two. Thirdly, Brodie Lee challenged SCU to a six-man tag team match that will see Lee, Colt Cabana, and Stu Grayson take on all three members of SCU. This was later made official for night two.

Fourthly, after FTR’s victory over SCU, The Butcher and The Blade challenged FTR to an eight-man tag team match on night two with Butcher, Blade, and The Lucha Bros. taking on FTR and The Young Bunks which was accepted. Fifthly, after saving Matt Hardy from a two-on-one beatdown from Santana and Ortiz, it was later announced that Private Party will take on Santana and Ortiz on night one. Lastly, it was announced that Nyla Rose will be in action on night two. With all this added to the previously announced matches, the two night supercard was set.

Overall, this was a good episode of Dynamite with the highlights being the Lumberjack match, FTR vs. SCU, and the show ending brawl between Chris Jericho and Orange Cassidy. Jericho vs. Cassidy on night two is the match I am looking forward to the most of any match on either night as both men have done an excellent job at building anticipation for their upcoming clash.

Between NXT and AEW this week, I am going to have to give the win to AEW. While NXT had the best match this week between the two shows with the NXT North American Championship match, when comparing both show overall, AEW won based on the overall match quality plus the great main event brawl between Jericho and Cassidy. This brings my personal 2020 WNW rankings to: NXT – 10 and AEW – 15.

 

WWE SmackDown:

SmackDown Superstars pay tribute to The Undertaker
Credit: WWE

Results:
1. Nikki Cross defeated Alexa Bliss, Dana Brooke, and Lacey Evans in a #1 Contender Fatal Four Way match to earn a shot at the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship at WWE Extreme Rules
2. The New Day (Kofi Kingston and Big E) and Lucha House Party (Lince Dorado and Gran Metalik) defeated Cesaro, Shinsuke Nakamura, The Miz, and John Morrison
3. Jeff Hardy defeated Baron Corbin

Thoughts: The opening of SmackDown was dedicated the career of The Undertaker, who WWE confirmed has officially retired after over three decades in the business. The Undertaker is my favorite wrestler of all time. While I knew this day was coming sooner rather than later, it is still sad to say goodbye to a character that I have watched for literally my entire life. I hope he enjoys his well-deserved retirement and I expect him to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in the near future. Thank you, Undertaker, for all the memories, the amazing moments, and for all the times you put your body on the line to entertain us fans. To me, you will always be the greatest of all time.

Overall, this was a good episode of Friday Night SmackDown with the highlights being the tributes to The Undertaker, Braun Strowman’s promo on Bray Wyatt, and the post main event match beatdown of Baron Corbin by Jeff Hardy, Big E, Braun Strowman, and Matt Riddle for Corbin’s disrespect for The Undertaker.

 

That’s it for this week’s Spandex and Suplexes. I am looking forward to night one of AEW Fyter Fest this Wednesday. Until next time, I’ll see you at ringside!

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Nicholas grew up reading J.R.R. Tolkien's books, watching Disney and Studio Ghibli films, and reading Marvel comics and Japanese manga. The superb storylines and characters ignited his passion for writing. He graduated from Full Sail University in 2015 with a BFA in Creative Writing for Entertainment. During his writing career thus far, Nicholas has had numerous short stories and articles published in an array of literary magazines and websites.

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