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Spandex and Suplexes: A Wrestling Review Issue #89

Welcome everyone to the 89th edition of Spandex and Suplexes: A Wrestling Review. I cover a week that saw the WWE Hell in a Cell PPV, the continued build to NXT The Great American Bash, and the AEW World Championship on the line. Let’s get started.

 

WWE Hell in a Cell:

My Match of the Week: Bobby Lashley vs. Drew McIntyre for the WWE Championship
Credit: WWE

Results:
1. Natalya defeated Mandy Rose by submission
2. Bianca Belair (c) defeated Bayley in a Hell in a Cell match to retain the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship
3. Seth Rollins defeated Cesaro
4. Alexa Bliss defeated Shayna Baszler
5. Sami Zayn defeated Kevin Owens
6. Charlotte Flair defeated Rhea Ripley (c) by DQ in a WWE Raw Women’s Championship match (Ripley retained the championship)
7. Bobby Lashley (c) defeated Drew McIntyre in a Hell in a Cell match after interference by MVP to retain the WWE Championship

Thoughts: I was not expecting Sami Zayn and Seth Rollins to pick up their respective wins. Zayn’s does make sense as it gives him much needed credibility in his feud with Kevin Owens and the new addition of “karma” to his conspiracy filled rants adds additional entertainment value to his character. It was announced on SmackDown later in the week that Owens and Zayn would face each other one more time in a Last Man Standing match to determine one of the spots in the upcoming Money in the Bank Ladder match. The big match stipulation should set the stage for one final clash in this latest feud between these two former best friends.

Rollins winning his match, however, gives me mixed feelings. While I get that they are trying to build Rollins back up to main event status, they could have done without it being at the expense of Cesaro. Cesaro was riding a wave of momentum after his massive win over Seth at WrestleMania, but after being decisively defeated by Roman Reigns at WWE WrestleMania Backlash and then losing to Seth Rollins in a clean manner this past Sunday, that wave has now been diminished significantly. While it is not too late to salvage The Swiss Superman’s current singles push, WWE needs to put the effort in maintaining his legitimacy as a top guy.

Overall, this was great PPV with the highlights being the two Hell in a Cell matches (with Lashley vs. McIntyre being My Match of the Week), Rollins vs. Cesaro, and Zayn vs. Owens.

 

WWE Raw:

Bobby Lashley brutalized Xavier Woods inside Hell in a Cell.
Credit: WWE

Results:
1. Ricochet defeated AJ Styles in a Money in the Bank Qualifying match after interference by The Viking Raiders (Erik and Ivar)
2. Asuka and Naomi defeated Eva Marie and Doudrop in a Money in the Bank Qualifying match
3. John Morrison defeated Randy Orton in a Money in the Bank Qualifying match after interference by The Miz
4. Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross defeated Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax in a Money in the Bank Qualifying match
5. Matt Riddle defeated Drew McIntyre in a Money in the Bank Qualifying match
6. Bobby Lashley defeated Xavier Woods in a Hell in a Cell match by submission

Thoughts: Xavier Woods had the biggest singles match of his career this past Monday as he faced Bobby Lashley inside Hell in a Cell. This started after The New Day interrupted Lashley’s celebration of his win at WWE Hell in a Cell the night before. Kofi Kingston made the point that he holds a victory over The All Mighty and thus should be the next challenger for Bobby’s WWE Championship. Lashley accepted Kingston’s challenge with the match to take place at the upcoming WWE Money in the Bank PPV.

Lashley then made an impromptu challenge to Kofi’s New Day partner, Woods, to face him in a match later in the night inside Hell in a Cell to which Xavier accepted. Woods would give everything he had against the WWE Champion, but would ultimately fall to the Hurt Lock. Lashley would then make things personal as he had MVP lock Kingston outside the cell as he tortured Woods with the Hurt Lock as Kofi was forced to watch on.
Kofi is a great next opponent for Lashley with Bobby’s brutal post-match attack on Xavier adding fuel to the fire as the feud is now about more than just Kingston wanting the WWE title, but also about getting revenge for his friend. Do I think Kingston has a shot at winning? No. However, it should still be a good match between two talented competitors.

Overall, this was a great episode of Monday Night Raw with the highlights being Ricochet vs. Styles, Orton vs. Morrison, Riddle vs. McIntyre, and Lashley vs. Woods.

 

WWE NXT:

Johnny Gargano challenged Karrion Kross for a NXT Championship match.
Credit: WWE

Results:
1. Adam Cole defeated Carmelo Hayes
2. Zoey Stark and Io Shirai defeated Aliyah and Jessi Kamea
3. The Way (Johnny Gargano and Austin Theory) defeated Pete Dunne and Oney Lorcan
4. Franky Monet defeated Elektra Lopez
5. Hit Row (Top Dolla and Ashante “Thee” Adonis) defeated Ever-Rise (Matt Martel and Chase Parker)
6. Kyle O’Reilly defeated Kushida

Thoughts: NXT seems to be setting up Johnny Gargano as the next challenger for Karrion Kross’ NXT Championship. After Gargano called out Kross to issue a championship challenge, he was interrupted by Pete Dunne who also made a claim for a title opportunity. This led to a tag team match that saw Gargano and Austin Theory defeat Dunne and Oney Lorcan. After the match Karrion would blindside Johnny with a running elbow.

Gargano vs. Kross would be an excellent championship match, with it presumably taking place at the upcoming NXT The Great American Bash special. While both men are heels, Gargano has shown that he is more than capable of shifting into Johnny Wrestling mode and getting the fans behind him at any given moment. I do not expect Gargano to be the one to end Kross’ reign, but it should be an entertaining encounter none the less.

Overall, this was great episode of NXT with the highlights being Cole vs. Hayes, The Way vs. Dunne/Lorcan, O’Reilly vs. Kushida, and the surprise debut of The Diamond Mine.

 

WWE SmackDown:

Edge is back!
Credit: WWE

Results:
1. Seth Rollins and Bayley defeated Cesaro and Bianca Belair
2. Big E defeated Apollo Crews in a Money in the Bank Qualifying match
3. Liv Morgan defeated Carmella
4. Jimmy Uso defeated Dolph Ziggler

Thoughts: The biggest news to come out of this past week’s SmackDown was the return of Edge, who made a surprise appearance at the end of the show where he attacked Roman Reigns and Jimmy Uso. It was then announced after the show that Reigns would defend his WWE Universal Championship against The Rated R Superstar at WWE Money in the Bank. While I expected Edge to eventually return to get his revenge against Roman, I figured it would be on a bigger stage like WWE SummerSlam rather than WWE Money in the Bank.

This makes me think two things: 1. WWE has something just as big if not bigger planned for The Tribal Chief at the Biggest Party of the Summer and 2. Since it will not be on a major stage, Edge will most likely not be winning. I expect that it will ultimately be Seth Rollins who cost Edge the match as Rollins had tried to make his case to Adam Pearce and Sonya Deville earlier in the night that he should be Reigns’ next opponent and will most likely not be pleased with Edge “cutting in line”.

Overall, this was a good episode of Friday Night SmackDown with the highlights being Big E vs. Crews and Edge’s return.

 

All Elite Wrestling:

Kenny Omega vs. Jungle Boy for the AEW World Championship
Credit: All Elite Wrestling

Results:
1. Hangman Page defeated Powerhouse Hobbs
2. Matt Sydal defeated Dante Martin
3. Ethan Page defeated Bear Bronson after interference by Scorpio Sky
4. Kris Statlander defeated The Bunny
5. Kenny Omega (c) defeated Jungle Boy to retain the AEW World Championship

Thoughts: After Kenny Omega successfully retained his AEW Championship over Jungle Boy in a great match, Christian Cage ran down to the ring to stop Omega from continuing his attack on Jungle Boy. Cage would then be jumped and beaten down by the Hardy Family Office and The Young Bucks to close the show.

Once again, the show ends with The Elite on top. While I get that you need to get heat on your heels by having them get one over on the good guys, when you do it every single week like AEW has been doing with The Elite, it is just going to start delivering diminishing returns as the audience is going to get sick of seeing the good guys never win. While it has not gotten as bad as it was with Triple H/Evolution in 2003 or Jeff Jarrett/Planet Jarrett in 2005, it could easily slide into that if AEW does not have the heroes get one over on the villains every so often to keep the viewers’ hopes up.

Overall, though, this was a good episode of Dynamite with the highlights being Page vs. Hobbs, the Blanchard/Konnan Face-To-Face, and the main event.

 

That’s it for this week’s Spandex and Suplexes. I am looking forward to Owens vs. Zayn on this Friday’s SmackDown. While you are here on Florida Geek Scene, be sure to check out the second episode of my spin off series, Spandex and Suplexes: The Interview Series, where I interviewed veteran pro wrestler, Randy Hogan. 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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