Welcome everyone to the forty-sixth edition of Spandex and Suplexes: A Wrestling Review. I cover a week that saw the WWE SummerSlam and NXT TakeOver XXX PPVs, the continued build to AEW All Out, and multiple championships on the line. Let’s get started.
1. Breezango (Fandango and Tyler Breeze) defeated Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch and Legado del Fantasma (Joaquin Wilde and Raul Mendoza) in a Triple Threat Tag Team #1 Contenders match to earn a shot at the NXT Tag Team Championships
2. Finn Bálor defeated Timothy Thatcher
3. Damian Priest defeated Bronson Reed, Cameron Grimes, Johnny Gargano, and Velveteen Dream in a Fatal Five Way Ladder match to become the new NXT North American Champion
4. Adam Cole defeated Pat McAfee
5. Io Shirai (c) defeated Dakota Kai to retain the NXT Women’s Championship
6. Karrion Kross defeated Keith Lee (c) to become the new NXT Champion
Thoughts: Karrion Kross defeating Keith Lee to become the new NXT Champion was a very surprising result. While I understand they were trying to make Kross a dominating force and that Vince McMahon really wanted Lee on Raw (which was confirmed as happening the next night at SummerSlam), it really sucks that it came at the expense of making The Limitless One a transitional champion, especially after the amazing crowning moment he had at The Great American Bash by becoming a double champion.
Overall, this was a great show with the highlights being Bálor vs. Thatcher, the NXT North American Ladder match (which is My Match of the Week), Cole vs. McAfee, and Shirai vs. Kai.
1. Apollo Crews (c) defeated MVP to retain the WWE United States Championship
2. Bayley (c) defeated Asuka after interference by Sasha Banks to retain the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship
3. The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford) (c) defeated Andrade and Angel Garza to retain the WWE Raw Tag Team Championship
4. Mandy Rose defeated Sonya Deville in a No Disqualification Loser Leaves WWE match
5. Seth Rollins defeated Dominik Mysterio in a Street Fight
6. Asuka defeated Sasha Banks (c) by submission to become the new WWE Raw Women’s Champion
7. Drew McIntyre (c) defeated Randy Orton to retain the WWE Championship
8. “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt defeated Braun Strowman (c) in a Falls Count Anywhere match to become the new WWE Universal Champion
Thoughts: The biggest new of the night came in the aftermath of the main event match. After The Fiend defeated Braun Strowman in a hard-hitting battle to regain the WWE Universal Championship, both men would be jumped by the returning Roman Reigns. Reigns then destroyed both men with spears and chair shot while talking trash. Roman stood tall as the show went off the air.
I found there to be both positive and negative aspects to this segment. As for the positives, Reigns return was truly shocking and unexpected. He also looked great with a more aggressive attitude (almost heelish) and a dominating beat down of the two most dominate forces on SmackDown in Strowman and Wyatt. My one negative for this segment is that The Big Dog’s return had the come at the expense of Braun and Bray.
The Wyatt/Strowman rivalry has been an absolute highlight this year and we finally got the see the final showdown between The Monster Among Men and The Fiend with Wyatt coming out on top. What should have been an epic conclusion to this story was tainted, in my opinion, by Wyatt’s win not getting any room to breath before Roman came in and wrecked both men. My main hope is that this does not end with The Fiend immediately dropping the WWE Universal Championship to Reigns at WWE Payback as Wyatt deserves a reign longer than just one week.
Overall, this was a great PPV with the highlights being Rollins vs. Dominik, Asuka vs. Banks, McIntyre vs. Orton, The Fiend vs. Strowman, and Reigns’ surprise return.
1. Shayna Baszler defeated Bayley by DQ after interference by Nia Jax
2. Akira Tozawa defeated Shelton Benjamin (c), Cedric Alexander, and R-Truth in a Fatal 4-Way match to become the new WWE 24/7 Champion
3. Montez Ford defeated Angel Garza
4. Bianca Belair and The Riott Squad (Ruby Riott and Liv Morgan) defeated Zelina Vega and The IIconics (Billie Kay and Peyton Royce)
5. Randy Orton defeated Keith Lee by DQ after interference by Drew McIntyre
6. Asuka (c) defeated Sasha Banks in a Lumberjack match to retain the WWE Raw Women’s Championship
7. Rey Mysterio and Dominik Mysterio vs. Seth Rollins and Buddy Murphy went to a no contest after interference by Retribution
Thoughts: Keith Lee’s Raw debut was very well done. Having him confront a major star like Randy Orton and then be presented as Orton’s equal, both on the mic and in the ring, was an excellent way to show Raw views who do not watch NXT just how big of a deal Lee is. After punt kicking Drew McIntyre three times throughout the night, Keith Lee vowed revenge for his fallen friend. It was later announced that The Limitless One will go one on one with The Viper this Sunday at WWE Payback and I cannot wait to see this encounter.
I was glad to see Aleister Black turn heel after attacking Kevin Owens on The Kevin Owens Show segment. Since debuting on the main roster, Black has been missing the edge he had in NXT, so this change in character is a great way to freshen Aleister’s character and present him as the dangerous threat that he should have been this whole time.
Three other matches were announced for WWE Payback with “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt set to defend his WWE Universal Championship in a No Holds Barred Triple Threat match against Roman Reigns and Braun Strowman, Bayley and Sasha Banks set to defend their WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships against Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax, and Apollo Crews set to defend his WWE United States Championship against Bobby Lashley. I predict Baszler/Jax and Lashley will walk out the winners of their respective matches and I pray The Fiend retains, though I have a feeling Reigns is going to take it.
Overall, this was a great episode of Monday Night Raw with the highlights being the Randy Orton/Keith Lee/Drew McIntyre storyline, Asuka vs. Banks, and Retribution’s attack on the Mysterios.
1. Breezango (Fandango and Tyler Breeze) defeated Imperium (Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel) (c) to become the new NXT Tag Team Champions
2. Tommaso Ciampa defeated Jake Atlas
3. Shotzi Blackheart defeated Mia Yim
4. Santos Escobar (c) defeated Isiah “Swerve” Scott to retain the NXT Cruiserweight Championship
5. Kyle O’Reilly defeated Drake Maverick by submission
6. Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez defeated Rhea Ripley and Io Shirai after interference by Mercedes Martinez
Thoughts: It was announced shortly after NXT TakeOver XXX that Karrion Kross had suffered a separated shoulder during his match with Keith Lee. Due to this, Kross came out at the top of the show and relinquished his newly won NXT Championship. With the title now vacant, NXT GM William Regal announced that next week will see a Fatal Four Way Ironman match to determine the new NXT Champion. The competitors of the match were revealed to be Johnny Gargano, Tommaso Ciampa, Finn Bálor, and Adam Cole.
While it sucks for Kross to have to give up his championship after only holding it for four days, it has resulted in a massive main event for next week. Due to the massive talent and star power of all four men, the winner of next week’s main event is hard to predict as any one of them could win and walk out as a two-time NXT Champion. Even so, I am going to go with Ciampa to win as he was never defeated for the NXT Championship due to, like Kross, having to give up the title due to an injury.
Overall, this was a good episode of NXT with the highlights being the NXT Tag Team Championship match, Ciampa’s heel turn, and Escobar vs. Scott.
1. FTR (Cash Wheeler and Dax Harwood) defeated Private Party (Isiah Kassidy and Marq Quen)
2. Jurassic Express (Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus) and The Natural Nightmares (Dustin Rhodes and QT Marshall) defeated The Lucha Bros. (Pentagon Jr. and Rey Fenix), The Butcher, and The Blade
3. The Elite (Kenny Omega, Matt Jackson, and Nick Jackson) defeated The Dark Order (Alex Reynolds, John Silver, and Alan Angels)
4. Darby Allin defeated Will Hobbs
5. Diamante and Ivelisse defeated The Nightmare Sisters (Allie and Brandi Rhodes) in the Finals of the AEW Women’s Tag Team Cup Tournament
6. Brodie Lee defeated Cody Rhodes (c) to become the new AEW TNT Champion
Thoughts: During an in-ring interview with Orange Cassidy, Chris Jericho interrupted and challenged Cassidy to what Jericho called a “Mimosa Mayhem” match at AEW All Out. Le Champion then explained the rules of this match: The match can only be won by pinfall, submission, or throwing your opponent into a tank of mimosa at ringside. Orange then accepted the match. Afterwards, The Inner Circle jumped Cassidy and The Best Friends. While I am sure the in-ring action between The Demo God and Freshly Squeezed will be great, the addition of the tank adds an opportunity for one man to fully humiliate their opponent in defeat. I expect Cassidy to pick up the win.
Another match was announced for AEW All Out after NWA World Women’s Champion Thunder Rosa challenged Hikaru Shida to a match at AEW All Out for Shida’s AEW Women’s World Championship. It was surprising to see the NWA World Women’s Champion on AEW television with her title as it indicated a working relationship between AEW and the National Wrestling Alliance. With the NWA being forced to go on hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, they have been unable to tape more episodes of NWA Power or their PPVs and have also lost talent like Ricky Starks and Eddie Kingston to AEW and Wade Barrett to WWE. Due to all this, it makes all the sense in the world for the NWA to wants to team up with an organization like AEW. What does this mean for the NWA’s already existing relationship with Ring of Honor? We will have to see.
Overall, this was a good episode of Dynamite with the highlights being FTR vs. Private Party, the continued slow build to Kenny Omega’s heel turn, and the surprisingly dominant victory by Brodie Lee over Cody Rhodes to become the new AEW TNT Champion.
Between this episode of AEW and the previous Wednesday’s NXT, I am going to have to give the win to AEW due to the overall match quality and storyline advancement. This brings my personal 2020 WNW rankings to: NXT – 12 and AEW – 21.
1. FTR (Cash Wheeler and Dax Harwood) defeated Best Friends (Trent Beretta and Chuck Taylor), The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson), and The Natural Nightmares (Dustin Rhodes and QT Marshall) in a Tag Team Gauntlet #1 Contender match last eliminating Best Friends by submission to earn a shot at the AEW World Tag Team Championships at AEW All Out
2. Lance Archer defeated Sean Maluta
3. Lucha Bros. (Pentagon Jr. and Rey Fenix), The Butcher, and The Blade defeated Joey Janela, Sonny Kiss, Brian Pillman Jr., and Griff Garrison
4. Big Swole defeated Britt Baker, Penelope Ford, and Rebel in a 3-on-1 Handicap match to earn a match with Britt Baker
5. Sammy Guevara defeated Matt Hardy in a Tables match
Thoughts: The biggest development from this week’s episode came from The Young Bucks and “Hangman” Adam Page. After costing The Young Bucks the gauntlet match earlier in the night, Matt and Nick Jackson confronted Page backstage at his bar. After berating Hangman and calling him a drunk, The Bucks told Page that he was out of The Elite. This entire situation brings up two very interesting questions: 1. Why did Hangman cost The Young Bucks their match? and 2. How does Page being ejected from The Elite affect his relationship with his AEW World Tag Team Championship partner and Elite member, Kenny Omega? We will have to see.
Overall, this was a good episode of Dynamite with the highlights being the Gauntlet match, the Jon Moxley/MJF contract signing, and Brodie Lee’s championship victory celebration.
Between NXT and AEW this week, I am going to have to give the close win to AEW based on the overall storyline advancement with the match quality being equal between both shows. This brings my personal 2020 WNW rankings to: NXT – 12 and AEW – 22.
1. Jeff Hardy (c) defeated Shinsuke Nakamura to retain the WWE Intercontinental Championship
2. Matt Riddle defeated Chad Gable
3. Braun Strowman defeated Drew Gulak
4. Cesaro defeated Kalisto after interference by Shinsuke Nakamura
5. Big E and Heavy Machinery (Otis and Tucker) defeated The Miz, John Morrison, and Sheamus
Thoughts: It was good to see Sami Zayn make his return after being gone for four months, complete with the WWE Intercontinental Championship belt he refused to return after being stripped of the title due to choosing not to compete during the Covid-19 pandemic. With his attack on the current WWE Intercontinental Champion, Jeff Hardy, it looks like we are heading for a “title for title” match to determine who the “true” WWE Intercontinental Champion is.
The shocking twist at the end of SmackDown revealed that Roman Reigns is now working with Paul Heyman. This is a pairing that could work very well as Heyman has shown throughout his career that he is one of the greatest managers of all time. It was also great character work as it showed that Roman wants the WWE Universal Championship back so bad that he is willing to form this unholy alliance with his former enemy.
Overall, this was a great episode of Friday Night SmackDown with the highlights being Hardy vs. Nakamura, the return of Sami Zayn, Bayley and Sasha Banks’ promo, Cesaro vs. Kalisto, the main event, and the reveal of Heyman as Reigns’ new manager.
That’s it for this week’s Spandex and Suplexes. I am looking forward to WWE Payback this Sunday and the epic Fatal Four Way Ironman match on the special “Super Tuesday” edition of NXT. While you are here on Florida Geek Scene, be sure to check out the first episode of my new spin off series, Spandex and Suplexes: The Interview Series, where I interviewed 17-year veteran pro wrestler, Alex Chamberlain. Until next time, I’ll see you at ringside!