Sunday, August 21, 2022

Random Match Review: Kazusada Higuchi (c) vs. Tetsuya Endo - KO-D Openweight Title Match - DDT: Peter Pan (August 20th, 2022)

This year, subscribing to Wrestle Universe and having access to DDT, NOAH, and TJPW shows as they happen and after they happen has been one of my best investments. Long gone are the days of scrambling for daily motion and google drive links. 

With that in mind, I’ve been able to keep up with these promotions, particularly DDT, like never before. In the process of that, Kazusada Higuchi has become one of my favorite people to watch. 

I looked back through some of my match rating archive lists and found that I had watch stuff of his several years back and gave favorable ratings, but this year and being to view DDT and his work less sporadically turned me into a full fledged fan. It was perfect timing for that to happen as well, to be honest. 

The lead in to this match was both traumatic and triumphant. On one side, you have Higuchi. A guy who’s been waiting for that moment to step up and grab the proverbial brass ring, so to speak. He capitalized on Endo getting concussed by Katsuhiko Nakajima at Cyber Fight Festival and made his way to the finals of the King of DDT tournament in July. There, he defeated his now partner, Naomi Yoshimura, to become the new KO-D champion and achieve his ultimate destiny. 

Now, a few months have passed and Endo is cleared to compete so naturally he wants the title back that he had to vacate. The story truly wrote itself. It wasn’t quite so predictable, though. This match would determine if Higuchi was just a transitional champion or if they are really going to go with him. An emotional story on both sides of the ring with both men having a lot on the line. 

They exhibit this story well. Higuchi comes out and looks like an absolute beast of a champion. He carries the DDT flag to the ring and waves it around. This guy truly has stepped into this role with both feet and has not disappointed. 

As the match begins, it becomes clear that they are going to keep Higuchi strong as Endo struggles to even get the least bit of momentum. He does string together some nice pieces of offense that stun Higuchi, but that’s all they are. They stun him. They don’t shift the momentum or turn the tide. Whether it was the sasuke special or the multiple german suplex reversals. You get glimpses of hope, but largely, Higuchi has his number and delivers an epic performance. 

The finish to the match sees Endo laying on the mat and Higuchi challenge him to stand. He tells the ref to stop counting and tries to fire Endo up, but also murder him at the same time. Some of the stiffest lariats you’ll see all year come out of this exchange and we get one last fighting spirit fire up from Endo before the former champion is finally put down with the Brain Claw.

Higuchi retains after a fantastic match. But things aren’t over here. Higuchi is handed the championship by the living legend Kenta Kobashi and is asked who he wants to defend against on September 25th. The answer is simple… Konosuke Takeshita. 

This is Takeshita’s first event back since his US excursion and he slowly walks to the ring and comes face to face with Higuchi. Takeshita’s response to this challenge? Simple. “Let’s fight.” 

September 25th, it will happen. Higuchi and Takeshita are 1-1-1 against each other in the three matches they’ve had over the past few years, but the stakes have never been this high and I can’t wait. See y’all then. 

Match rating - ****

Sunday, August 14, 2022

WCW Monday Nitro Review - June 3rd, 1996

WCW Nitro 
June 3rd, 1996 
Asheville, North Carolina

WCW World Champion: The Giant (since 4/29/96)
WCW US Champion: Konnan (since 1/29/96)
WCW Tag Team Champions: Sting & Lex Luger (since 1/22/96)
WCW TV Champion: Lex Luger (since 3/6/96)
WCW Cruserweight Champion: Dean Malenko (since 5/18/96) 

Commentators - Tony Schiavone & Larry Zbyszko (Hour One) and Eric Bischoff & Bobby Heenan (Hour Two) (ugh)  

The Shark opens the show on the ramp to discuss the hair shaving he suffered last week at the hands of Big Bubba. Mean Gene Okerlund hosts the interview. Shark says he’s not a Shark.. he’s a man and his name is John Tenta and he’s gonna destroy Big Bubba and make him feel how he felt last week! AW HELL. Tenta charges the ring and we are underway. 

1) John Tenta vs. Big Bubba (w/ Jimmy Hart)

Tenta hits a body slam and some stuff starting off on fire. Bubba flees the ring when Tenta pulls out some scissors. This leads to a countout victory for Tenta. 

Awesome backstage interview segment between The Steiners and Sting/Luger, they clash tonight and I can't wait. 

2) High Voltage (Ruckus & Chaos) vs. Faces of Fear (The Barbarian & Meng)

This is the WCW debut for High Voltage. Faces of Fear fucking destroy them. Barbarian hits Ruckus with a belly to belly off the top turnbuckle and considering size of them both, it’s nuts. Mafia Kick from Meng gets them the win. 

Match rating - **

3) Craig Pittman (w/ Teddy Long) vs. Disco Inferno 

WCW Monday Nitro Review - May 27th, 1996

WCW Monday Nitro
May 27th, 1996
Macon, Georgia

WCW World Champion: The Giant (since 4/29/96)
WCW US Champion: Konnan (since 1/29/96)
WCW Tag Team Champions: Sting & Lex Luger (since 1/22/96)
WCW TV Champion: Lex Luger (since 3/6/96)
WCW Cruserweight Champion: Dean Malenko (since 5/18/96) 

Commentators - Tony Schiavone & Larry Zbyszko (Hour One) and Eric Bischoff & Bobby Heenan (Hour Two) (ugh)  

SO outside of a very few select matches (mostly cruserweight stuff), I haven't watched hardly any WCW. My dad was a WWF/Stone Cold head so as a kid, that's all that was on so I don't even have any childhood memories or knowledge of WCW. BUT with having so much time at home recently, I figured there would be no better time to start diving into the company and what better place to start than as the Monday Night Wars were picking up and as the NWO formation began to be teased?

This is the first broadcast of Nitro as a two hour program head to head with Raw's one hour program.

1) Ric Flair & Arn Anderson vs. The American Males 

God, Flair & Anderson are SO GOOD. They make this match somehow seem interesting and believable. They get the win after 11 minutes which you could argue they didn't need but they worked it perfectly and it flew by. 

Match rating - *** 

2) Steve Doll vs. Mike Enos

This gets interrupted and one of the most historic moments in WCW history takes place. SCOTT HALL walks through the crowd and cuts the well renowned promo - "You want a war? You've got one..." Crowd is awkwardly quiet in complete shock and awe. WHAT IS GOIN ON. Epic epic moment that is a huge hallmark in the history of the Monday Night Wars and pro wrestling as a whole. 

3) Craig Pittman vs. Diamond Dallas Page

TEDDY LONG is ringside with Pittman. Page gets the win in a glorified squash. D D P.

Bischoff welcomes us to hour two of Nitro. Man he realllllly is so openly trying to outdo WWE with these little things as Raw was only an hour long at the time and he made a huge deal out of Nitro being 2 hours and being in it's second hour as Raw is just starting for it's one hour program. 

4) The Giant (w/ Jimmy Hart) vs. The Shark - WCW World Heavyweight Title Match 

Sunday, August 7, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Smackdown Review - August 21st, 2003

WWE Smackdown 
August 21st, 2003
Detroit, Michigan 

WWE Champion: Kurt Angle (since 7/27/03)
WWE United States Champion: Eddie Guerrero (since 7/27/03)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas (since 7/3/03)
WWE Cruserweight Champion: Rey Mysterio (since 6/5/03)

Commentators - Michael Cole & Tazz

The WWE Champion Kurt Angle opens the show. It’s his first appearance since two weeks ago where Brock Lesnar assaulted him in the steel cage and aligned with Mr. McMahon. Angle wants Brock Lesnar in the ring right now. Instead, he gets Mr. McMahon who says what we all could’ve guessed—- he’s not getting Brock or even Vince tonight. Vince says he does have a little warm up match for him, though… The Big Show. Angle says that’s fine, but he doesn’t want a match.. he wants a FIGHT. Angle and Show lock horns and brawl in the entrance way and referees have to pull Kurt away. 

Back from commercial, The Big Show is flipping shit.. literally and figuratively. It’s pretty fucking hilarious because Vince is yelling for him to calm down and then makes the match with Angle later a Falls Count Anywhere Street Fight SINCE YOU BOTH WAMT A FIGHT GOD DAMMIT!!!~~ 

1) Rey Mysterio (w/ Billy Kidman) vs. Matt Hardy (w/ Shannon Moore)

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Monday Night Raw Review - August 18th, 2003

WWE Monday Night Raw 
August 18th, 2003
Grand Rapids, Michigan 

World Heavyweight Champion: Triple H (since 12/15/02)
Intercontinental Champion: Christian (since 8/10/03)
World Tag Team Champions: La Resistance (since 6/15/03)
WWE Women's Champion: Molly Holly (since 7/28/03)

Commentators - Jim Ross & Jerry "The King" Lawler

Chris Jericho opens the show with The Highlight Reel. He talks about how he’s gonna shave Kevin Nash bald tonight then go on to win the Elimination Chamber match at SummerSlam. His guest tonight is Shawn Michaels. Once Michaels comes out, Jericho passes off hosting duties to.. Evolution. After some talking, this turns into a 3 on 1 assault on HBK by H, Flair & Orton. Kevin Nash comes out for the save and he’s followed by Goldberg who cleans house on everyone. 

Backstage, Stacy is getting ready. Test walks up and this saga IS STILL GOING ON. Test says when he wins the match tonight, he will treat Stacy “like the little slut that she is.” 

1) Molly Holly (c) vs. Trish Stratus - Women’s Championship Match

Sunday, July 31, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Smackdown Review - August 14th, 2003

WWE Smackdown
August 14th, 2003
St Louis, Missouri 

WWE Champion: Kurt Angle (since 7/27/03)
WWE United States Champion: Eddie Guerrero (since 7/27/03)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas (since 7/3/03)
WWE Cruserweight Champion: Rey Mysterio (since 6/5/03)

Commentators - Michael Cole & Tazz

The Undertaker vs. The Big Show

Mr. McMahon opens the show. He says he is here to introduce everyone to someone that they thought they knew.. Brock Lesnar. Vince then replays what happened last week with he & Brock swerving Angle and destroying him in the cage. Vince play by play narrates the entire thing over the mic and it is HILARIOUS LMAO. “LOOK AT THAT!” Vince brings Brock out and they have a love fest. STEPHANIE MCMAHON MAKES HER RETURN to interrupt. Steph says she learned a lot at Vengeance.. she learned that her dad would hire A-Train to physically assault his own daughter just so “his slut” (Sable) could win a match. Dear fucking lord. Considering everything happening right now in real life in 2022, this segment is nuts to look back on. Steph talking about being in a position of power and her dad being a piece of shit. Vince makes a lot of derogatory comments toward women. He says the worst day in his life was when he married her mother and Steph tries to slap him. Brock grabs her arm and she screams. Vince says he can handle it, though, and since Steph wants to accuse him of physical abuse, he’ll show her physical abuse when she faces THE 350
POUND A TRAIN TONIHJT! “And that’s physical abuse…” this is fucked. 

1) Worlds Greatest Tag Team (c) vs. Rey Mysterio & Billy Kidman - WWE Tag Team Title Match

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Monday Night Raw Review - August 11th, 2003

WWE Monday Night Raw 
August 11th, 2003 
Quad Cities

World Heavyweight Champion: Triple H (since 12/15/02)
Intercontinental Champion: Christian (since 8/10/03)
World Tag Team Champions: La Resistance (since 6/15/03)
WWE Women's Champion: Molly Holly (since 7/28/03)

Commentators - Jerry Lawler & Jonathan Coachman

Goldberg vs. Ric Flair… again. But this time it’s No DQ. OH YAY. 

This is the first episode of Raw on SPIKE TV. 

Eric Bischoff opens the show and he replays everything that went down last week. As he’s bragging about beating Shane, JIM ROSS RETURNS. JR comes to the ring and says he’s pressing charges on Bischoff for what happened to him during the Kane interview. Stone Cold comes out and says the only way JR won’t sue Bischoff is if he signs a contract for a match tonight. Eric agrees to avoid the lawsuit, but he didn’t read the fine print.. tonight, Bischoff is contracted to face Kane!

1) Scott Steiner & Stacy Keibler vs. Rico & Jackie

This is fine while it lasts which isn’t long. Test runs through the crowd and Steiner follows him into the crowd for a brawl. This distraction allows Rico & Jackie to pick up the win. 

Match rating - *1/4

After the match, Steiner says THIS IS BULLSHIT. He is tired of Test following him around and wants him one on one right now. Test is down, but not right now.. next week and with one stipulation - winner gets Stacy Keibler. Jesus Christ. Stacy says they’re in and Steiner says Test’s ass is his next week. 

Backstage, Ric Flair and Randy Orton are talking. Triple H walks up and says now more than ever they need to stick together. H complains about the Elimination Chamber Match and Orton says Hunter isn’t alone in the match because he’s fighting to defend his title as well. H says now they need to turn their attention to tonight when Ric faces Goldberg. H says everyone’s been screwing them, now it’s time for them to screw with everyone else. 

Back from commercial, Kane arrives in his van again LOL. This shit is getting kinda humorous more than scary or ominous. 

2) The Dudley Boyz vs. La Resistance 

Saturday, July 30, 2022

NJPW: Music City Mayhem Review - July 30th, 2022

NJPW Music City Mayhem 
July 30th, 2022
Nashville, Tennessee 

Commentators -
Ian Riccaboni, Matt Rehwoldt, & Tanga Loa

1) The DKC, Kevin Knight, & Ren Narita vs. Shota Umino, Yuya Uemura, & Fred Yehi 

Uemura gets isolated by Knight, DKC, & Narita. Apparently those guys team a bit on Strong and it definitely shows. Kevin Knight surprised me here with an awesome flurry off a hot tag where he knocks Yehi & Umino off the apron and nails Uemura with a deep bodyslam. Yehi gets the hot tag when Uemura finally gets out of his predicament and it rules. Things break down here with various face offs. Most notably Umino and Narita squaring off. This was fun and almost everyone shined, but as a whole it probably could’ve benefitted from being a little shorter. Shota gets the win for his team with the Death Rider DDT in 13:12.

Match rating - **1/2

2) Davey Richards (c) vs. Rocky Romero - MLW National Openweight Title Match 

Friday, July 29, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Smackdown Review - August 7th, 2003

WWE Smackdown 
August 7th, 2003
Kelowna, British Columbia 

WWE Champion: Kurt Angle (since 7/27/03)
WWE United States Champion: Eddie Guerrero (since 7/27/03)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas (since 7/3/03)
WWE Cruserweight Champion: Rey Mysterio (since 6/5/03)

Commentators - Michael Cole & Tazz

1) Eddie Guerrero vs. Chris Benoit

Ok, so obviously this fucking rules. Obviously a lot shorter than the awesome Vengeance match, but everything is snug and great. Benoit goes for the flying headbutt and Rhyno runs down & knocks him off. Benoit is pissed and dives onto Rhyno. Tajiri runs in and goes after Eddie and the ref calls for the bell. 

Match rating - ***

A huge brawl breaks out after the match. Officials come out to break it up and Sgt Slaughter gets on the mic. He says to ring the bell and WE’VE GOT A TAG TEAM MATCH PLAYA. 

2) Eddie Guerrero & Rhyno vs. Chris Benoit & Tajiri 

Another great time here. It goes a little over five minutes and goes by so quickly. Tajiri mists Rhyno and Benoit german suplexes the hell out of him. This leads us to the finish with Benoit forcing Eddie to tap to the cross face. 

Match rating - ***

Backstage, Kurt Angle tells Josh Matthews he’s gonna sit down with Brock Lesnar one on one tonight to get their issues settled. 

3) Zach Gowen vs. Nunzio (w/ Chuck Palumbo & Johnny Stamboli) 

Thursday, July 28, 2022

AEW: Dynamite - Fight For the Fallen Review - July 27th, 2022

AEW Dynamite 
Fight for the Fallen 2022
July 27th, 2022
Worcester, MA

AEW World Champion: CM Punk (since 5/29/22)
AEW Interim World Champion: Jon Moxley (since 6/26/22)
AEW World Tag Team Champions: Swerve Strickland & Keith Lee (since 7/13/22)
AEW Women’s World Champion: Thunder Rosa (since 3/16/22)
AEW TBS Champion: Jade Cargill (since 1/5/22)
AEW TNT Champion: Wardlow (since 7/6/22)

1) Jon Moxley (c) vs. RUSH - AEW World Championship Match 

Listen, firstly, I’m not calling Mox the interim World champ because that’s just short selling this run he’s having. Rush had an insane match with Dragon Lee this past weekend and that was enough to get me hyped for this considering how killer Mox is right now. We get the best Mox entrance in recent memory as he comes out super fired up and throwing bottles in the crowd. This match couldn’t have happened at a more perfect moment in time. Rush gets the jump on Moxley early and we see blood from the forehead of the champion just minutes into this. This was a great brawl that fell into the vein of Moxley’s style of match while also leaning into Rush’s brawling side which truthfully isn’t very far off from Moxley’s in a way if you look at some Rush’s past grudge matches and such. This just rocked. Stiff strikes, suplexes, nearfalls and some blood. Everything you expect from 2022 Mox and nothing less. Everything you’d want from Rush after his barnburner with his brother last weekend. Andrade tried to run down to interfere, but the Lucha Bros made the save and ran them off which added some drama to the final stretch. Mox retains off of a paradigm shift. 

Match rating - ***3/4

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Random Match Review: FTR (c) vs. The Briscoes - ROH World Tag Team Title Match - ROH: Death Before Dishonor - July 23rd, 2022

FTR (Cash Wheeler & Dax Harwood) (c) vs. The Briscoes (Jay & Mark Briscoe) - 2/3 Falls Match for the ROH World Championship 

This is my Match of the Year so far. Plain and simple. 

I didn’t think anything would surpass Hanger/Bryan from January, but I should’ve never doubted these two teams. Not to spoil my rating before getting to the end of this article, but this is my third five star match of 2022. The first being the obvious Hanger/Danielson title match and the second came at Double or Nothing with the chaotic Anarchy in the Arena. This match surpasses them both, though, if we are comparing. To my taste, atleast. 

This felt like the type of match that made me fall in love with Ring of Honor’s mid 2000’s shows. It went around 45 minutes, but felt like 25. I was glued to the screen from bell to bell and this truly felt like a fucking rollercoaster ride. 

I went ****3/4 on their first match. Not that it was necessarily missing something, but I felt like there was a more perfect epic still stowed away that the two teams could deliver. I’m glad my thinking was right for once because that’s what we got here. 

Everything in this match was laid in. Even the smallest things. Every single strike looked like it hurt. Dax bled from the chest from chops, the teams traded headbutts and closed fists. This felt like an actual war. Their first match was an awesome back & forth spectacle, this felt like war. Competition between two teams who love tag team wrestling with everything in them. 

One team who is the most underrated of the last 20 years in some circles in the Briscoes. Then a team who is dead set on making a career worthy of placing them in the Top 2-3 best teams of all time discussion. The emotion both duos fought with is what pushed it beyond just a slugfest for a title.

The Briscoes have held the guard down for Ring of Honor through thick and thin for 20 years. When everyone else left, they stayed. They fought. They stood their ground and with pride. They’ve beaten everyone, they’ve held the titles 10+ times. Jay is a former world champion. They’ve done it all, but they’ve never beaten FTR. FTR.. a team who captured gold at the top of the ladder in WWE and has arguably taken the opposite career path that the Briscoes have taken. They’re a perfect clash for one another and you feel it with every strike and splash of sweat that flies to the mat. 

This match left nothing else to be desired. Dax Harwood, Cash Wheeler, Jay Briscoe & Mark Briscoe gave everything last night and delivered the best match I’ve seen this year. An epic. A classic. Thank you, guys. This was amazing. Nothing else needs to be said. 

Match rating - *****

Friday, July 22, 2022

Random Match Review: Jon Moxley & Wheeler Yuta vs. Best Friends (Chuck Taylor & Trent Beretta) - AEW: Dynamite - July 20th, 2022

Jon Moxley & Wheeler Yuta vs. Best Friends (Chuck Taylor & Trent Beretta) - AEW Dynamite - July 20th, 2022

This probably comes as no surprise to anyone who knows me, but I loved this match. I don’t think I loved it solely because of bias, though. I think I tend to be pretty fair in my analysis of most things and when I am being biased, I can call myself out for it and own it. 

Sure, I love Chuck Taylor more than most. Yes, Jon Moxley is my undoubted Wrestler of the Year so far and has me glued to the screen any time he’s on. And yes, Wheeler Yuta has been a consistent favorite of mine this year as well. 

Take all of that away, though, and I think you still have one of the best TV matches of the year. In all honesty, I think it may go down as one of the most underrated ones considering some of the takes I’ve seen on it. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Monday Night Raw Review - August 4th, 2003

WWE Monday Night Raw 
August 4th, 2003
Vancouver, British Columbia 

World Heavyweight Champion: Triple H (since 12/15/02)
Intercontinental Champion: Booker T (since 7/7/03)
World Tag Team Champions: La Resistance (since 6/15/03)
WWE Women's Champion: Molly Holly (since 7/28/03)

Commentators - Jerry Lawler & Jonathan Coachman 

TONIGHT: Goldberg vs. Ric Flair 

Eric Bischoff kicks off the show. Shane McMahon almost immediately interrupts him. Shane returned last week and got physical with Kane for attacking his mother. Shane and Eric get into it. Eric tells Shane to leave and Shane refuses. They go nose to nose and Eric tells Shane he better leave because he’s a black belt and will kick his ass. Stone Cold comes out. Austin basically antagonizes both of them. Austin suggests a No Holds Barred Match between them for later. Eric reminds Austin of Linda’s rules about his decision making. Austin finds his way around them and asks Shane how he feels about it and Shane says “… ring the bell.” Bischoff starts screaming and shit then calms down like he came to a realization and says “.. you know what? You’re on.” The match is official and ITS BECAUSE STONE COLD SAID SO. 

1) Bubba Ray Dudley (w/ D-Von Dudley) vs. Renee Dupree (w/ Sylvan Grenier) 

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Smackdown Review - July 31st, 2003

WWE Smackdown 
July 31st, 2003
Colorado Springs, Colorado 

WWE Champion: Kurt Angle (since 7/27/03)
WWE United States Champion: Eddie Guerrero (since 7/27/03)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas (since 7/7/03)
WWE Cruserweight Champion: Rey Mysterio (since 6/5/03)

Replays of Kurt Angle winning the WWE Title at Vengeance air before the opening video package. 

TONIGHT: Eddie Guerrero defends the US Title against Tajiri and Torrie Wilson & Jamie Noble have a “sleep over”

The new WWE Champion’s music hits to start the show. Angle comes to the ring and gets a mic. He’s grateful to be here and be able to say that he’s champion again after his injury that made him think he may never get to do that. Brock Lesnar interrupts and challenges Kurt to a rematch. Kurt accepts, but Vince McMahon comes out to ruin the party. He tries to stir the pot and say that Kurt came to him earlier and told him not to book a rematch between them. Kurt denies it, but Vince still says no to Brock’s rematch request and instead makes a tag match for tonight to test their friendship. Brock & Angle versus two opponents of Vince’s choosing. 

Amazing SummerSlam commercial airs of Brock being a lifeguard and F5’ing a shark. Wow. 

1) Rey Mysterio (w/ Billy Kidman) vs. Shelton Benjamin (w/ Charlie Haas) 

VIDEO: NJPW G1 Climax 32 Night One & Two Review + Night Three-Five Predictions


Sunday, July 17, 2022

Random Match Review: Jon Moxley vs. Konsosuke Takeshita - AEW: Dynamite - July 13th, 2022

I don't do these often. That's mainly probably because I'm super OCD about reviewing shows in full. Lately, however, I just have not had the time or motivation to fully sit down and analyze all the shows I've been watching. That leads us here.

This week on Dynamite, we got possibly the best in-ring action overall of any week in recent memory. So much so that I woke up the next morning and couldn't stop thinking about two matches in particular with this being one of them.

When this was announced, everyone was ecstatic including myself. DDT’s ace Takeshita is in the midst of his US excursion where he’s had bangers against everyone he’s faced inside and outside of AEW from Hangman Page to Mike Bailey. Then, you have Jon Moxley. The undoubted wrestler of the year so far and not to jinx it or spoil my year end awards, but I don’t see ANYONE knocking him from that spot. This match and the circumstances around it are good reason as to why, too. 

The last calendar month of Mox boast a great, gritty GCW Title defense against Tony Deppen on 6/17, a bloody battle with Tanahashi to win the AEW Title on 6/26, the crazy ass Blood & Guts match on 6/29, a slugfest with Brody King on 7/6 and after ALL OF THAT, Mox sees Takeshita having a killer match with Eddie Kingston on Rampage and says YO LET ME FIGHT HIM NEXT WEEK. A maniac. A pro wrestler’s pro wrestler. A fighter. 

This turns out to be everything expected of it and more. Some could say Mox matches in 2022 are very similar.. or at-least have similar traits. Blood, suplexes, head drops, stiff strikes and chops. You wouldn’t be wrong, but they don’t come off as a routine to me, they come off as a fight. Mox wants to wrestle and he goes into these matches completely unhinged with this match being no different. 

This is snug and focused from Mox and truthfully we see more fire from Takeshita than we have yet in AEW. I would’ve liked to seen more fire, but that’s a minor note. Takeshita gets color during the commercial break and as someone who has watched a lot of Takeshita’s stuff back in Japan, I can never recall him bleeding so although I could he wrong, this is definitely a rare occurrence and something I did not anticipate here. It definitely added some urgency to things and some additional sympathy that Takeshita’s matches with Hanger and King didn’t have. 

This was definitely a Jon Moxley match, but he let Takeshita go the fuck off and counter a ton of his stuff which gave us some awesome nearfalls. These two really just threw fucking bombs and I’d love another match between the two or a match between Takeshita and Claudio because this definitely pushed Takeshita a level further in the eyes of the AEW fan base. Just fantastic, pro wrestling and another notch on the belt of both these guys’ monumental years. I could see this being an amazing AEW Title match 3-4 years in the future with the roles being reversed if AEW wants to take it there. Takeshita has IT and they need to do whatever they can to keep him coming back regularly and use him accordingly. 

Match rating - ****1/4

Fortune Dream 7 Review - June 15th, 2022

Fortune Dream 7 
June 15th, 2022
Tokyo, Japan 

1) Takao Omori vs. Issei Onitsuka 

Good squash opener here. Omori largely dominates and I think calling it a squash is pretty accurate. It did go 8 minutes though and we got to see Onitsuka fire up a couple of times which rocked for the young GLEAT lad. Omori wins a little banger. 

Match rating - **3/4

2) Lady C vs. Himeka

Sunday, July 3, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Monday Night Raw Review - July 28th, 2003

July 28th, 2003
Colorado Springs, Colorado

World Heavyweight Champion: Triple H (since 12/15/02)
Intercontinental Champion: Booker T (since 7/7/03)
World Tag Team Champions: La Resistance (since 6/15/03)
WWE Women's Champion: Gail Kim (since 6/30/03)

Commentators - Jerry "The King" Lawler & Jonathan Coachman

Replays of Kane giving Linda McMahon the tombstone from last week air. Jesus. What a wild ass angle that was. 

NO CHANCE. Vince McMahon is here. He says he’s here to confront Kane for what he did to his wife.. not because he’s a good husband, but because he’s a man and Kane is not. Vince says he doesn’t know what’s going to happen when he has officials bring Kane to that ring tonight, but he can guarantee one thing. By the end of the night..


1) Booker T & Scott Steiner (w/ Stacy Keibler) vs. Christian & Test 

IMPACT: Against All Odds 2022 Review - July 1st, 2022

IMPACT Wrestling
Against All Odds 
July 1st, 2022
Center Stage - Atlanta, Georgia 


1) Black Taurus vs. Laredo Kid 

This was a blast and the perfect length. It only goes seven minutes so no room for filler or excess. Just these two running a great sprint with a ton of awesome spots. The crowd was hot for both guys which added to it as well. Taurus gets the win. 

Match rating - ***

2) Brian Myers (c) vs. Rich Swann - Digital Media Championship Match 

This was fun. I don’t really care about either guy, but you can’t deny how easy of a watch this was. I hate that Swann has so many shit allegations in his past because he really is such a fun act for Impact to have on their roster and I feel like all his shittiness has overshadowed any positive credit to his name. Which, I mean.. rightfully so. Anyway. 

Match rating - **3/4


1) Motor City Machine Guns (Alex Shelley & Chris Sabin) vs. BULLET CLUB (Chris Bey & Ace Austin) 

You know this rocked. Shelley is so consistent this year as always. Sabin is also a super solid hand.. as always. Then you’ve got the new young guns of the BC, Chris Bey & Ace Austin. I’m not big on either guy and I think BC is bloated as fuck, but Bey has delivered for me lately and Ace Austin’s story in the BOSJ and joining BC has been pretty cool. So, yeah, this was good. It’s the first ever time for Bey & Ace tagging and I’d totally be down for more. MCMG made them look great, even in defeat. 

Match rating - ***1/2

Backstage, Karl Anderson gets his team hyped up to face Honor No More later. Gallows, Heath, and Storm all get chances to talk. 

2) Mickie James & Mia Yim vs. Deonna Purazzo & Chelsea Green 

Saturday, July 2, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Vengeance 2003 Review - July 27th, 2003

WWE Vengeance 2003
July 27th, 2003
Denver, Colorado 

WWE Champion: Brock Lesnar (since 3/30/03)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas (since 7/7/03)
WWE Cruserweight Champion: Rey Mysterio (since 6/5/03)

Commentators - Michael Cole & Tazz

This is the first Smackdown solo PPV of the brand split era. 

1) Chris Benoit vs. Eddie Guerrero - United States Tournament Finals 

My god. This was fucking great. They really let these two go out here and work an almost 20 minute barnburner to kick this show off. People talk about all time great openers and I’ve never heard this one brought up, but I’d say it should be in the conversation. The only flaw this has may just be personal preference, but in the final few minutes, things seemed to lose focus and shift toward a ton of false finishes and nearfalls and even some interference as Rhyno runs down. He seems to be trying to help Benoit as Eddie tries to cheat, but instead TURNS AND SPEARS BENOIT. And as a result, Eddie steals the win. I did not expect that. But yeah, this was fantastic, check it out if you haven’t seen it. One of the best WWE matches of the year. 

Match rating - ****1/4

Backstage, Vince has some flowers and pretends they’re for Steph, but they’re actually for Sable. 

2) Jamie Noble vs. Billy Gunn (w/ Torrie Wilson) 

Friday, July 1, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Smackdown Review - July 24th, 2003

WWE Smackdown 
July 24th, 2003
Fresno, California 

WWE Champion: Brock Lesnar (since 3/30/03)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas (since 7/7/03)
WWE Cruserweight Champion: Rey Mysterio (since 6/5/03)

Commentators - Michael Cole & Tazz


Replays air of the great handicap match from last week and the miracle work by Kurt Angle with help from Zach Gowen. 

The Smackdown General Manager Stephanie McMahon makes her way to the ring to start the show. Steph says since Vince is out taking care of her mother Linda after she was piledriven by Kane on Raw.. SHES GONNA TAKE BACK SMACKDOWN. Steph then turns her attention to Sable and says she’s gonna TREAT HER LIKE THE B*TCH SHE IS at Vengeance. John Cena interrupts. Cena apologizes, but says he had a dream about her last night and goes into a bunch of different sexual innuendos while rapping about her & Sable. This is the infamous segment where Cena smacks Stephanie’s ass (RESPECTFULLY WITH PERMISSION) and this brings OUT DA HELLCAT SABLE. Well.. she’s on the screen actually. Sable replays last week’s incident with all the moments where Steph had the upper hand conveniently edited out. She makes fun of Linda being piledriven by Kane and dares Steph to not wait until Vengeance. Steph storms toward the back as we head to commercial.

Back from commercial, Steph is stomping around backstage looking for Sable. She thinks she’s found her, but it’s Torrie. Steph continues the hunt. 

1) Rey Mysterio & Billy Kidman vs. Matt Hardy & Shannon Moore

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Monday Night Raw Review - July 21st, 2003

WWE Raw 
July 21st, 2003
Los Angeles, California 

World Heavyweight Champion: Triple H (since 12/15/02)
Intercontinental Champion: Booker T (since 7/7/03)
World Tag Team Champions: La Resistance (since 6/15/03)
WWE Women's Champion: Gail Kim (since 6/30/03)

Commentators Jerry “The King” Lawler & Jonathan Coachman

TONIGHT: Kane vs. Rob Van Dam and Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho 

In the ring, Eric Bischoff is here. He says Austin’s run is about to come to an end. He welcomes Linda McMahon to the ring. Linda wants to address Kane. She says he’s been put on house arrest and under serious psychological evaluation BUT that won’t prevent him from coming to work and competing against Rob Van Dam later. Bischoff isn’t too happy with that portion, so he turns his attention to Steve Austin. Before he can start throwing him under the bus completely, Austin comes out to a huge ovation. Austin says he stands by all his decisions because they were what he thought would be best at that given time. Linda says he’s done a good job, but the biggest issue is that he can’t go around assaulting the other superstars as a co-general manager. Bischoff loves when the attention is turned to Austin. Linda says basically that if he can’t follow the rules, he has to step down and he can’t get physical with anyone unless provoked. Austin says it sounds like he has a lot of thinking to do. Linda reminds him that if he steps down, full power goes back to Bischoff then says it may be best if he takes the rest of the night off. Bischoff mocks Austin for this and then Linda says Bischoff should take the night off as well. Bischoff gets ran off from the ring by Austin and Austin shares a beer with Linda McMahon to close the segment. Austin has until next week to decide what he’s gonna do. 

1) Gail Kim & Trish Stratus vs. Victoria & Molly Holly (w/ Steven Richards)

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Velocity Review - July 19th, 2003

WWE Velocity 
July 19th, 2003
Columbus, Ohio

WWE Champion: Brock Lesnar (since 3/30/03)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas (since 7/7/03)
WWE Cruserweight Champion: Rey Mysterio (since 6/5/03)

Commentators - Josh Matthews & Ernest “The Cat” Miller

1) Brian “Spanky” Kendrick & Funaki vs. Chuck Palumbo & Johnny Stamboli (w/ Nunzio) 

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Smackdown Review - July 17th, 2003

WWE Smackdown 
July 17th, 2003 
Columbus, Ohio 

WWE Champion: Brock Lesnar (since 3/30/03)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas (since 7/7/03)
WWE Cruserweight Champion: Rey Mysterio (since 6/5/03)

Commentators: Michael Cole & Tazz

Replays of Brock Lesnar in the 3 on 1 Handicap Match from last week. 

TONIGHT: …another Handicap Match.. Kurt Angle against The Big Show, Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas

Mr. McMahon hits the ring to start the show. He says last week, Brock Lesnar was taught a lesson and this week, Kurt Angle will be taught one. Before Vince can get too far, Brock comes out to confront him. Vince immediately tells Brock not to cross the boss.. Brock says he doesn’t want to cross the boss, he wants to beat the boss. Brock challenges Vince to a match tonight. Vince accepts BUT NOT TONIGHT. He also tells Brock to leave the arena because if he interferes in Kurt’s match tonight, he will be stripped of the title and fired. Brock says he understands and he also understands can’t F5 him tonight, but he can say one thing “FU.” 

1) Chris Benoit vs. Matt Hardy - United States Title Tournament Match 

Monday, June 20, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Monday Night Raw Review - July 14th, 2003

July 14th, 2003
Indianapolis, Indiana

World Heavyweight Champion: Triple H (since 12/15/02)
Intercontinental Champion: Booker T (since 7/7/03)
World Tag Team Champions: La Resistance (since 6/15/03)
WWE Women's Champion: Gail Kim (since 6/30/03)

Commentators - Jerry “The King” Lawler & Jonathan Coachman

The show begins with Chris Jericho’s Highlight Reel. Jericho says he was terrified to come here tonight because of how terrible of a workplace it has been since Kane has been wreaking havoc. Jericho says his guest tonight calmed his nerves because he’s the one man who can get things in order. The returning co general manager.. Eric Bischoff. Bischoff’s goofy ass comes down to the ring in a neck brace. Bischoff says Kane is banned from entering the arena tonight, but we will get to the bottom of this as he’s sent JR to do a one on one sit down interview with Kane in Hartford, CT at WWE Headquarters. Bischoff then shows exclusive footage ON THE JERITRON 5000 of Kane throwing RVD through a wall last week before coming to the ring. 

“I was gonna whip a man’s ass…” -Stone Cold 

Jericho continues kissing Bischoff’s aaa and OUT COMES STINE COLD STONE COLD STINE COLD. BY FUCKIN GOD. Austin asks Bischoff why he’s sending Kane to Connecticut because he was gonna call him out face to face and whoop his ass. Bischoff asks what that would do besides make Kane hurt more people. Bischoff says this entire thing is Austin’s fault for provoking Kane into being a monster again. Austin goes off on Bischoff, making fun of his neck brace then goes to leave. Jericho taunts him and gets a stunner for his troubles to close the segment. 

TONIGHT: Evolution vs. The Dudleys in an Elimination Match, Book/Christian IC Title rematch, & Gail Kim defends the Women’s Title against Molly Holly 

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Smackdown Review - July 10th, 2003

WWE Smackdown 
July 10th, 2003
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

WWE Champion: Brock Lesnar (since 3/30/03)
WWE Tag Team Champions: Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas (since 7/3/03)
WWE Cruserweight Champion: Rey Mysterio (since 6/5/03)

Commentators - Michael Cole & Tazz


Replays of Gowen’s triumphant victory last week air to open the show.

Kurt Angle hits the ring to start the night off and talk about the triple threat WWE Title match at Vengeance that Mr. McMahon made last week. Angle tells Brock & Show to BRING IT ON. JOHN CENA interrupts Kurt and in the most puny voice ever Michael Cole says 


God, that was hilarious. Cena has on a Wake Forest jersey. He raps on Kurt and says the arena will be empty when they finish the match at Vengeance. The main event should be Taker vs. Cena. Kurt’s  face while Cena raps is fucking hilarious. Angle says he thinks he’s finally found someone in the company who is whiter than he is LMAOOOO. This turns into the infamous KURT ANGLE RAP SEGMENT OH MY FUCKING GODODNDBSJEJEEJJ. 

“Hey, Ref, you do that beat box thing right? Come give me a funky beat.” -Kurt Angle 

As always, Kurt calls Brian Hebner to drop the beat for him. This segment is a clsssic and you’ve probably already seen it so I’m not gonna recap it, just go watch it. Cena and Angle end up going face to face and it rules. Big Show comes out and chokeslams Kurt after Cena hit an FU on him.

1) Rey Mysterio & Billy Kidman vs. The Basham Brothers vs. APA (Bradshaw & Ron Simmons) vs. Chuck Palumbo & Johnny Stamboli - #1 Contender’s Match for the Tag Team Titles

Yo!! This is cool! The winner of this gets a tag title shot at Vengenace. Bradshaw & Danny Basham lock it up early and Bradshaw destroys him. FORESHADOWING TO THE JBL CABINET IN ~2005 LETS GO. This is Billy Kidman’s return match which is sick. They do an awesome spot of chaos to send us to break with The FBI and APA fighting to the back while Mysterio & Kidman do dives to the floor to take out the Bashams. Back from commercial, APA & FBI fought through the locker room area so it’s apparently down to Mysterio & Kidman and the Bashams in the ring for the #1 contendership. This closing stretch rules. Mysterio & Kidman haven’t lost a step since teaming together in WCW and the Bashams are decent enough to be a good base for them to do their stuff. Mysterio & Kidman win a blast of a match.

Match rating - ***

Backstage, Kurt is being iced up after the chokeslam and FU from earlier. Brock Lesnar comes in to check on him and tries to joke with him. Angle doesn’t think it’s funny and Lesnar says to calm down because “we’re gonna beat that big boy” at Vengeance. Angle says “we?” It’s every man for himself at the PPV!!

Zach Gowen’s contract signing is next. Stephanie McMahon comes out to introduce him. Zach is so happy and confident after realizing his dream and honestly.. it makes me so excited for what I know is coming, Mr. McMahon showing up to ruin his life all over again and sure enough, as soon as Zach signs the contract, Vince & Sable come out. Vince says he’s happy for both Zach & Steph. He announces Brock Lesnar’s punishment for helping Zach last week is a 3 on 1 handicap match later and that Zach’s punishment is facing him one on one at Vengeance. “You might have beat cancer, but you won’t be me.” FUCK. Sable hits Steph with an object and Vince & Sable leave. 

Backstage after the commercial, Sable and Vince look to finally be about to get it on AND STEPH RUNS IN AND SPEARS SABLE OVER THE COUCH. HOLY HELL. Officials separate them and VINCE STARTS SCREAMINF. One of my favorite freak outs of his, honestly. He says if Steph wants to fight, she can fight Sable at Vengeance. Oh man.. 

2) Chris Benoit & Rhyno vs. Shannon Moore & Matt Hardy 

God I wish this got more time than it did. It still is awesome while it lasts. Rhyno gets worked over for a Benoit hot tag. Things break down and it rules. Benoit taps out Shannon for the win. 

Match rating - **1/2

Backstage, Brock is getting ready for his handicap match. Kurt says he musta really pissed someone off. Brock jokingly asks where Kurt will be during his match tonight but he’s confident in himself because he’s the champion and this is what he does.

3) Eddie Guerrero vs. Ultimo Dragon - United States Championship Title Tournament

Eddie comes out before the match and sarcastically says he sends his well wishes to Tajiri.  The crowd is still cheering him even though he clearly turned heel last week. Eddie says he’s focusing on himself now and entering the US Title tournament. This is a fun match with Dragon although it doesn’t go more than 2 or 3 minutes. Eddie steals the win using the tights.

Match rating - **

Cameras catch Billy Gunn & Torrie Wilson kissing backstage. Earl Hebner walks by right after. They’re in mixed tag action next. 

Next week: Eddie vs. Billy + Benoit vs. Hardy in the semi-finals of the US Title tournament 

4) Billy Gunn & Torrie Wilson vs. Jamie Noble & Nidia 

This was a waste. Noble & Nidia wear some of the new clothes they got with the money they inherited and Gunn & Torrie do the ass routine. The faces win.

Match rating - *

After the match, Noble offers Torrie $10,000 to sleep with him. Billy Gunn attacks him for his troubles. Nidia looks on. 

5) The Big Show, Shelton Benjamin, & Charlie Haas vs. Brock Lesnar - Handicap Falls Count Anywhere Match 

Brock fighting from underneath and then exploding and destroying everyone is awesome. They go to the floor and Brock tries to F5 Benjamin off some steps through the announce table, but Show breaks it up. Show hits a HUGE chokeslam off the aforementioned steps for the pinfall. Awesome spot. 

Match rating - **3/4

The Big Show stands tall to close the show. 

GCW: Tournament Of Survival 7 Review - June 4th, 2022

GCW Tournament of Survival 7
June 4th, 2022
Atlantic City, New Jersey 

I was live in attendance for this. 

1) Hoodfoot vs. Rina Yamashita - First Round Match 

Perfect way to kick off the weekend. It’s my first time seeing Yamashita and she exceeded expectations. Hoodfoot has become a favorite of mine this year and he looked awesome here. He & Yamashita started at 100 and never hit the brakes. Just a great deathmatch that never slowed down, but was competent enough to make sense and not feel like a clusterfuck. Hoodfoot is good at that and clearly I’ve been sleeping on Yamashita because got damn. This ruled. Yamashita wins to advance. 

Match rating - ***3/4 

2) SLADE vs. Matt Tremont - First Round Match 

Monday, May 30, 2022

GCW: Maniac Review - May 21st, 2022

GCW Maniac
May 21st, 2022
Los Angeles, CA - Ukranian Cultural Center

GCW World Champion: Jon Moxley (since 9/4/21)
GCW World Tag Team Champions: BUSSY (Allie Katch & Effy) (since 4/9/22)
GCW Extreme Champion: AJ Gray (since 1/15/22)
GCW Ultraviolent Champion: John Wayne Murdoch (since 3/31/22)

Commentators - Kevin Gill & Veda Scott

1) Blake Christian vs. Kevin Blackwood 

Blake comes to the ring with a “Chelsea Green loves Blake Christian” sign. Kevin Blackwood pays tribute to the victims of the Buffalo, NY incident last week. Bell rings and we are under way. The feed cuts out for the first 6-8 minutes of this. It cuts back in and we get a pretty awesome final 7-8 minute stretch. Some great exchanges and nearfalls. Blake Christian wins with a curb stomp. Considering the feed went out, take my rating with a grain of salt. 

Match rating - **3/4 

2) Titus Alexander vs. Tony Deppen 

This is a nice surprise. I had no idea this was on the card, but I love both these guys right now so LETS GO. Tony Deppen pokes Alexander in the eyes to begin. Weird to see Alexander not being the heel considering he’s very much the villain in his home promotion West Coast Pro from the little I’ve seen. Alexander follows it up with a trio of insane dives to really get the energy going for this one. This was really such a blast. Deppen really rocks and Alexander was awesome with the explosive babyface fire. Titus definitely made the most of this opportunity and the crowd was behind him the whole way. 

Match rating - ***1/2 

3) “Speedball” Mike Bailey vs. Masha Slamovich 

Wow. I anticipated this to be good, but I didn’t anticipate it to be quite possibly the best match either of these two has had all year. That’s exactly what it was, though. Beyond the stuff you’d expect like awesome strike exchanges, suplexes and spots. The laser focus of Speedball on the arm/shoulder of Masha and the selling that followed was just phenomenal. This was one of the best GCW matches of the year and well worth going out of your way to see. Just fantastic professional wrestling. Speedball wins with the flamingo driver. Amazing. 

Match rating - ****1/2

4) AJ Gray (c) vs. Jack Cartwheel vs. Ninja Mack vs. Cole Radrick vs. Starboy Charlie vs. Jimmy Lloyd - Scramble Match for the GCW Extreme Championship 

AEW: Rampage Review - May 20th, 2022

AEW Rampage
May 20th, 2022
Houston, Texas

AEW World Champion: Hangman Adam Page (since 11/13/21)
AEW World Tag Team Champions: Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus (since 1/5/22)
AEW Women’s World Champion: Thunder Rosa (since 3/16/22)
AEW TBS Champion: Jade Cargill (since 1/5/22)
AEW TNT Champion: Scorpio Sky (since 4/27/22)

Commentators - Excalibur, Taz, Ricky Starks, Chris Jericho, & Ruby Soho

1) Malakai Black, Brody King, & Buddy Matthews vs. Evil Uno, 10, & Fuego Del Sol

This was a great opener. It's setting in that Stu Grayson really is gone from AEW as we see Uno teaming with 10 & Fuego here. RIP :((( BUT YEAH. HOB kills these trios matches and this was no exception. Just a blast of a way to kick this show off. HOB obviously wins, but that doesn't take away from how fun this was along the way. 

Match rating - ***

NJPW: Best of the Super Juniors 29 Night Four Review - May 19th, 2022

NJPW Best of the Super Juniors 29
Night Four 
May 19th, 2022
Hachinohe, Aomori, Japan

1) Taka Michinoku & Yoshinobu Kanemaru vs. YOH & Hiroyoshi Tenzan 

Kevin Kelly says YOH has the best poker face in wrestling. That’s fair. YOH is 1-1 in the tournament, rebounding the night before this with a victory. The Suzuki-gun boys charge YOH & Tenzan at the bell. This is all about previewing YOH/Kanemaru which happens in a few days. This is pretty lifeless, though. Like there’s nothing WRONG with it but yeah. YOH wins with the direct driver. 

Match rating - *1/2 

2) Alex Zayne, Clark Connors, Jado, & Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Dick Togo, SHO, Gedo, & Taiji Ishimori 

This surprised me. There was actually some fire behind some of this. Since I’m behind, I’ve heard that Zayne & Ishimori have a really good match coming up and based off their interactions here, I can definitely see the chemistry. Even Clark Connors looked good here off a tag cleaning the apron of his opponents. Togo & Taguchi had some fun exchanges as well. Just a good time here. The faces win, but Ishimori attacks Zayne after the bell to further that story. 

Match rating - **1/2

3) Shingo Takagi & Hiromu Takahashi vs. Ace Austin & Tiger Mask 

Saturday, May 28, 2022

GLEAT: Ver. 25 Review - May 18th, 2022

GLEAT Ver. 25
May 18th, 2022
Tokyo, Japan

Sorry this took so long to get done, guys. I got super behind on a lot of shit here in the last two weeks, but also.. this show got pulled from GLEAT’s YouTube which totally threw off my reviewing schedule and plans. Thankfully it’s been re-uploaded and I can now properly dive in to this huge event. 

It’s CIMA’s 25th Anniversary show. I’ve loved CIMA for nearly a decade now so this is required viewing to me, PLUS GLEAT is on fire right now so it’s pretty much a can’t miss event regardless especially with a loaded card like this. 

1) Minoru Tanaka, MUSASHI, & Soma Watanabe vs. Quiet Storm, Check Shimatani, & Masato Kamino 

This was a great little opener. MUSASHI & Kamino really laid into each other early. Things broke down and the finishing stretch was awesome. Lots of flash pin attempts and roll ups to throw in some added drama. The BULK Orchestra led trio of Storm, Shimatani, & Kamino secure the victory when all is said and done. 

Match rating - **3/4 

2) Yu Iizuka vs. Takanori Ito 

Sunday, May 22, 2022

AEW: Dynamite Review - May 18th, 2022

May 18th, 2022
Houston, Texas 

AEW World Champion: Hangman Adam Page (since 11/13/21)
AEW World Tag Team Champions: Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus (since 1/5/22)
AEW Women’s World Champion: Thunder Rosa (since 3/16/22)
AEW TBS Champion: Jade Cargill (since 1/5/22)
AEW TNT Champion: Scorpio Sky (since 4/27/22)

Commentators -
Excalibur, Jim Ross, & Tony Schiavone 

1) Samoa Joe vs. Johnny Elite - Owen Hart Foundation Tournament Match 

The show opens with Samoa Joe against a mystery joker opponent. The ROH TV Champ enters with his title and awaits the rival of the joker which turns out to be the former John Morrison/Johnny Nitro/Johnny Mundo. This was a letdown for some. I admittedly wanted Claudio Castagnoli, but I will accept this rather than it being someone like Johnny Gargano. There’s been enough bland NXT people joining the team.. so a one off from Morrison? I’m fine with that. The match is fun as well. So no complaints from me. Is it great? Nah! But is it good? Yes. It felt like a match from 2014-2015 Raw that would be getting rave reviews under that platform. But here in AEW, the bar is so high. I’m just glad it wasn’t a melodramatic NXT/Adam Cole style match. It had close falls and big spots, but they didn’t go anywhere near overboard and as a result, I enjoyed the hell out of it. A Joe prolonged squash would’ve also satisfied me just as much, but it won’t complain at all about whag we got because it could’ve been MUCH worse and I enjoyed this more than a lot of recent matches that have made Dynamite. It’s not FTR/Bucks obviously and it’s nowhere near Punk/Dustin even.. but it beats a lot of other stuff. Joe wins to advance to the semi finals. 

Match rating - ***1/4

After the match, Joe is immediately jumped by Jay Lethal and Sonjay Dutt. Satnam Singh begins walking down the ramp as well. Thankfully THE BOYS are in the building. Chuck Taylor, Trent Beretta, & Rocky Romero hit the ring with chairs to run off the bastards.

Saturday, May 21, 2022

NJPW: Best of the Super Juniors 29 Night Three Review - May 18th, 2022

NJPW Best of the Super Juniors 29 
Night Three
May 18th, 2022
Sendai, Miyagi, Japan


1) Tiger Mask & Yuto Nakashima vs. Kosei Fujita & Ryohei Oiwa

Enjoyed the heck out of this little thing. Just simple wrestling with the young lions & Tiger Mask. Much better than the stupid House of Torture openers from the last two nights. Tiger Mask hits the Tiger Driver for the win a few minutes after he’s in and the young lions had done their thing for a few. 

Match rating - **1/2

2) El Phantasmo, Dick Togo, & Gedo vs. Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Master Wato, & Jado

Friday, May 20, 2022

NJPW: Best of the Super Juniors 29 Night Two Review - May 17th, 2022

NJPW Best of the Super Juniors 29
Night Two 
May 17th, 2022
Sakata, Yamagata, Japan

At the Sakata City Gymnasium for the first night of B Block action. This is a little nostalgic cause it instantly reminds me of 2018-19 when I watched the BOSJ shows as they happened. 

1) Hiroyoshi Tenzan, YOH, & Yuto Nakashima vs. Clark Connors, Kosei Fujita, & Ryohei Oiwa 

YOH and Connors begin. They face on night three so it’s an understandable way to start this off by teasing that match. They’re the real focus and story of this similar to how Yuta/Eagles was last night in the opening eight man except it’s not nearly as good. Sorta lifeless. Connors gets the pin in 10 minutes or so. 

Match rating - **

2) Ace Austin & Tiger Mask vs. Taka Michinoku & Yoshinobu Kanemaru (Suzuki-gun) 

Kanemaru charges Austin at the bell. They face off in singles tomorrow so naturally that’s the whole reason this is happening. This was just like the opener.. fine, but just a house show effort for six minutes. Austin gets the pin on Taka for the victory for he & Tiger Mask.

Match rating - *3/4

3) Dick Togo, SHO, & Taiji Ishimori (BULLET CLUB) vs. Alex Zayne, Ryusuke Taguchi, & Jado 

It sucks that everything House of Torture almost has a **1/4 ceiling because of the incessant foul play. This had some good action in its short time with Alex Zayne hitting his first exciting move of the tournament. But they still had to go the weapons route for SHO to tap out Jado. Sigh. Fun while it lasted before that, atleast. 

Match rating - **

4) DOUKI (Suzuki-gun) vs. El Lindaman (STRONGHEARTS) - Block B Tournament Match 

Sunday, May 15, 2022

NJPW: Best of the Super Juniors 29: Night One Review - May 15th, 2022

New Japan Pro Wrestling
Best of the Super Juniors 29
Night One - Block A
May 15th, 2022
Nagoya, Aichi, Japan

Commentators - Kevin Kelley & Chris Charlton
Japanese Commentators - Milano Collection AT & Toru Yano 

1) Wheeler Yuta, Kosei Fujita, Ryohei Oiwa & Yuto Nakashima vs. Robbie Eagles, Tiger Mask, Master Wato, & Hiroyoshi Tenzan

I unexpectedly am hyped about this opener before it even begins. Yuta teaming with the young lions and looking like a star leader as he backs them out to the apron, volunteering to start first was so cool. Plus hearing commentary talk about Yuta’s mentor being Regal and his history was nice. Okay and yeah, the match RULES. Yuta begins with Eagles and that’s the thread that comes back into play throughout the match. They end up linking back up a number of times during this and it’s definitely the highlight. All of the lions get time to shine and particularly are able to beat up on Master Wato a good bit by isolating him. Fujita in particular stood out with a set of AWESOME dropkicks. Like.. damn. Wato ends up recovering and getting the win for his team after about 10 minutes. This was great and a blast. 

Match rating - ***1/4 

After the match, Wheeler Yuta & Robbie Eagles come face to face again outside. Eagles grabs a commentary headset and says 

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Ruthless Aggression Era Project: WWE Monday Night Raw Review - July 7th, 2003

July 7th, 2003
Montreal, Quebec, Canada 

World Heavyweight Champion: Triple H (since 12/15/02)
Intercontinental Champion: Christian (since 5/18/03)
World Tag Team Champions: La Resistance (since 6/15/03)
WWE Women's Champion: Gail Kim (since 6/30/03)

Commentators - Jerry "The King" Lawler & Jim Ross


Stone Cold is here to kick the show off after missing last week and his co general manager.. having a time. Austin says he had food poisoning last week and was stuck at home drinking beer and eating Mexican TV dinners. Austin says Bischoff is stove up from the chokeslam he took from Kane last week, so he’s running the show tonight and we’re kicking it off with a title match. 

1) Christian (c) vs. Booker T - Intercontinental Championship Match