Spandex and Suplexes: A Wrestling Review Issue #30

Welcome everyone to the thirtieth edition of Spandex and Suplexes: A Wrestling Review. I cover a week that saw the final build to WWE Money in the Bank, the continued build to AEW Double or Nothing, and two NXT Championships on the line. Let’s get started.


WWE Raw:

AJ Styles made his big return to win the Gauntlet match.
Credit: WWE

1. AJ Styles defeated Bobby Lashley, Titus O’Neil, Akira Tozawa, Shelton Benjamin, Humberto Carrillo, Angel Garza, and Austin Theory in a Last Chance Money in the Bank Qualifying Gauntlet match last eliminating Humberto Carrillo
2. Shane Thorne and Brendan Vink defeated Ricochet and Cedric Alexander
3. The Viking Raiders (Erik and Ivar) defeated The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford)
4. Charlotte Flair defeated Liv Morgan
5. Drew McIntyre defeated Buddy Murphy

Thoughts: This was an overall good episode of Monday Night Raw with the highlights being the Gauntlet match and The Viking Raiders vs. The Street Profits.

The biggest story of the night was the surprise return of AJ Styles as the last entrant in the Money in the Bank Qualifying Gauntlet match. After an exhausted Humberto Carrillo survived the onslaught of Bobby Lashley, Angel Garza, and Austin Theory, Styles took advantage of the weakened Carrillo to pick up the win. This earned AJ the final spot in the men’s Money in Bank Ladder match. Styles being added to the match adds a greater level of athleticism and star power to an already unique MitB match.

Speaking of the Money in the Bank Ladder matches, it was announced by WWE that for the first time ever, both the men’s and women’s MitB Ladder matches will occur simultaneously. All six men and six women will start at the ground floor of WWE Headquarters and fight their way to the roof to grab their respective gender’s MitB briefcase. This could make the match even more fun or it could make it a chaotic train wreck. Possibly both. I can’t wait for Sunday to see how WWE tries to pull this match off.

It was announced later in the week that both Edge and Randy Orton will be making their returns on next week’s Raw. Will their feud continue or will the two former friends end up going in different directions? We shall see.



NXT Championship match: Adam Cole vs. The Velveteen Dream
Credit: WWE

1. Johnny Gargano defeated Dominik Dijakovic after interference by Candice LeRae
2. Akira Tozawa defeated Jack Gallagher in a NXT Cruiserweight Championship Tournament match
3. Chelsea Green defeated Xia Li after interference by Aliyah
4. Karrion Kross defeated Leon Ruff by submission
5. Io Shirai defeated Charlotte Flair (c) in a NXT Women’s Championship match by DQ (Charlotte Flair retains the NXT Women’s Championship)
6. Kushida defeated Jake Atlas by submission in a NXT Cruiserweight Championship Tournament match
7. Cameron Grimes defeated Denzel Dejournette
8. Adam Cole (c) defeated The Velveteen Dream to retain the NXT Championship after interference by The Undisputed Era (Roderick Strong and Bobby Fish)

Thoughts: Shirai and Flair were having an excellent match until it was suddenly ended when Charlotte struck Io with a kendo stick. This caused The Queen to be disqualified. Charlotte continued the attack on Shirai. As she was going for a Figure-Eight around a steel post, Rhea Ripley made her return and chased off the NXT Women’s Champion. Shirai then yelled at Ripley for getting involved in her business. This led to a confrontation backstage that saw The Joshi Judas and The Nightmare brawl with each other until they were broken up by WWE officials.

The match itself was going well until the sudden finish. It is great to see Rhea back as she is one of the best superstars on the NXT roster. The fight backstage between Shirai and Ripley seems to indicate that this is going to lead to a three-way championship match between Io, Rhea, and Charlotte which should be an epic encounter.

It was announced on the show that next week, Imperium (Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel) will face Matt Riddle and Timothy Thatcher for the NXT Tag Team Championships. Also announced for next week’s show was Finn Bálor vs. Cameron Grimes after their confrontation earlier in the night.

This was an overall good episode of NXT with the highlights being Gargano vs. Dijakovic, Karrion Kross’ entrance, and the two championship matches.


All Elite Wrestling:

My Match of the Week: Chris Jericho and Sammy Guevara vs. Matt Hardy and Kenny Omega
Credit: AEW

1. Cody Rhodes defeated Joey Janela
2. Nyla Rose defeated Kenzie Paige
3. Jon Moxley defeated Frankie Kazarian
4. Lance Archer defeated QT Marshall
5. Le Sex Gods (Chris Jericho and Sammy Guevara) defeated Matt Hardy and Kenny Omega in a Street Fight after interference by The Inner Circle (Jake Hager, Santana, and Ortiz)

Thoughts: After Moxley’s hard fought victory over Kazarian, the AEW World Champion was jumped by multiple minions of The Dark Order. SCU (Christopher Daniels and Scorpio Sky) tried to run down to make the save, but the numbers disadvantage overwhelmed them as well. “The Exalted One” of The Dark Order, Brodie Lee, then appeared and dropped Moxley. Lee then challenged Jon Moxley to a match for the AEW World Championship. A beat down Moxley, still able to smile, responded to Lee that “all you had to do was ask”. The Champion was then beaten down by Brodie and The Dark Order again for his trouble. Lee then walked off with Moxley’s championship belt. The match was then made official for AEW Double or Nothing.

While Jon Moxley vs. Brodie Lee should be a great match, I feel that it is a little too soon for Lee to be receiving a World Championship match. This is due to the fact that his win-loss record, which is supposed to be very important in AEW, does not warrant The Exalted One receiving a title match. Also, assuming Brodie will go on to lose to Moxley, a major loss this soon could potentially halt Lee’s momentum. However, I can understand why AEW went in this direction as Brodie Lee is the only top heel available to face Jon Moxley at the upcoming PPV.

The main event Street Fight between Kenny Omega/Matt Hardy and Le Sex Gods was absolutely fantastic. The match was entertaining, creative, and fun from start to finish with the four men fighting all over the arena and backstage area. Two of the most creative and hilarious spots in the match saw Matt Hardy running down both Guevara and Jericho with a golf cart. If you have not seen the match yet, I highly recommend going back and watching it. It is because of all of this that this match is my clear Match of the Week.

Also announced on the show were two more matches for AEW Double or Nothing. The first announced match was MJF vs. Jungle Boy. Second was the Casino Ladder match where the winner will receive a future AEW World Championship match.

Overall, this was a great episode of Dynamite with the highlights being Cody vs. Janela, Moxley vs. Kazarian, Lee and The Dark Order’s attack on Moxley, and the spectacular main event street fight.

Between NXT and AEW this week, I am going to have to give the win to AEW. The two shows were close in regards to their in ring quality, but AEW’s main event blew everything away. This brings my personal 2020 WNW rankings to: NXT – 8 and AEW – 10.


WWE SmackDown:

Bray Wyatt tries to lure Braun Strowman back to the dark side.
Credit: WWE

1. Sonya Deville defeated Mandy Rose
2. The Miz, John Morrison, and The Forgotten Sons (Wesley Blake and Steve Cutler) defeated The New Day (Kofi Kingston and Big E) and Lucha House Party (Gran Metalik and Lince Dorado)
3. Tamina and Lacey Evans defeated Bailey and Sasha Banks
4. Baron Corbin, Shinsuke Nakamura, and Cesaro defeated Daniel Bryan, Drew Gulak, and Otis

Thoughts: This was a good episode of SmackDown with the highlights being the eight-man tag team match and the Bray Wyatt/Braun Strowman confrontation.

The eight-man tag team match was chaotic and fun and was a great preview of the fatal four way WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship match at WWE Money in the Bank tomorrow night. All of the build to this match seems to indicate that The Forgotten Sons could end up being the team to walk out of Sunday with the championships. The inclusion of The Forgotten Sons and Lucha House Party has brought a breath of fresh air to the SmackDown tag team division.

I am really looking forward to watching WWE Money in the Bank this Sunday, especially the double Money in Bank Ladder match. For the women’s side of the match, my prediction is that Shayna Baszler will end up taking the case, though my personal preference would be for Asuka to win. As for the men’s side, I am going with Aleister Black to take the MitB briefcase. AJ Styles could also walk away with the win, but that depends on how last minute the plan to add him to the match was.


That’s it for this week’s Spandex and Suplexes. Once again, I am looking forward to WWE Money in the Bank tomorrow night as well as Edge and Randy Orton’s return this Monday on Raw. On one final note, I am personally very happy that we have made it to thirty issues and that you, the readers, still come back week after week to read what this ol’ smart mark has to say. I want to thank all of you for your continued support. Until next time, I’ll see you at ringside!


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.