Date: September 5, 2018
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: Mauro Ranallo, Percy Watson, Nigel McGuinness
Every now and then you get a dream match, but this time we have a Dream match. The big main event this week is Velveteen Dream vs. Johnny Gargano after Dream interrupted Gargano’s promo/therapy session last week. Other than that we might be getting some more information about who attacked Aleister Black. Let’s get to it.
Kassius Ohno vs. Kona Reeves
They start rather slowly with Reeves shouting that he’s the finest. That earns him a right hand to the jaw but Reeves comes back with a top rope ax handle. The Hawaiian Drop doesn’t work so Ohno hits the rolling forearm for the pin at 1:46. Thank goodness they’re pulling the plug on Reeves because it just wasn’t working.
Post match Ohno says he’s here to be the best, but now he gets it: there’s always going to be someone fresh and new. Whoever the next guy with buzz is, Ohno is going to be right here to knock them to the back of the line. That’s a good place for him as Ohno isn’t likely to make the main roster with his gut so let him be the NXT gatekeeper.
Connor’s Cure video.
Forgotten Sons vs. Street Profits
The Sons are Wesley Blake/Steve Cutler in a former military gimmick with Jaxson Ryker (Gunner) in their corner. Everything breaks down early on with the Profits dropkicking them to the floor, followed by a big flip dive from Ford. Back in and Cutler gets his arm barred but a blind tag brings Blake back in for a heck of a clothesline. A springboard kneedrop gets two on Ford and the Sons start taking turns hammering him down.
Cutler cranks on a reverse chinlock but his neckbreaker is countered into a backslide for two. That’s enough for the hot tag off to Dawkins as everything breaks down. Cue a masked man to go after Ford but he quick unmasks him as Shane Thorn. Ryker clotheslines Ford, leaving Cutler and Blake to hit a reverse DDT/middle rope stomp for the pin on Dawkins at 6:34.
Rating: C. Well that was quite a bit for a debut match. I like the fact that the Sons beat a bigger named team but it took a lot to make it work. I could have gone without all the interference, but at least we got to the right ending. The Sons could be an interesting gimmick, though this wasn’t the best start.
Heavy Machinery is in William Regal’s office where Otis admits that he broke the toilet in the Performance Center. Something about bad stomach chemistry. They also saw Tommaso Ciampa in the bushes near where Black was attacked.
We look back at the end of last week’s tag match between the Undisputed Era and Pete Dunne/Ricochet.
Post match, Ricochet and Dunne argued about who was responsible for the loss. They want each other’s titles. In two weeks: title vs. title. Well that should be awesome.
Video on the War Raiders.
Kairi Sane vs. Trish Adora
Non-title but Sane has a treasure chest, complete with a bunch of coins. Adora has some size to her with a lot of muscle. Sane takes her down into a rollup before switching over to a Brock Lock. That means a quick rope grab, followed by a spinning backfist to drop Adora. The Insane Elbow finishes Adora at 2:25. Adora has a good look but she didn’t get to do much here, which is understandable.
Post match here’s Shayna Baszler to shove the treasure chest over. Reality is going to hit the pirate ship like a cannonball when she enacts her rematch clause. The fight is on with Sane out striking Baszler and spearing her to the floor. Baszler’s confidence is a great feature for her and it’s making her stuff stand out.
Tommaso Ciampa is in the back again and says the crowd hasn’t seen him since Takeover because he doesn’t have a #1 contender. With Gargano defeated and Black injured, he really is the last man standing. The champ leads wolves and he’s at the top of the food chain. Follow the lead of the NXT Champion. Ciampa is amazing and that’s on his worst days.
Lars Sullivan is in Regal’s office and says he should have told the boss that he was medically cleared earlier on. He was there on the night of the attack to find Black because he owed Black a visit. When he arrived though, Black was already laid out. Sullivan saw the Undisputed Era driving off and Regal arriving. That’s fine for Regal, but Sullivan gets Raul Mendoza next week.
Velveteen Dream vs. Johnny Gargano
Dream poses at him to start and they hit the mat for some grappling. Back up and Gargano is more aggressive than usual with a forearm to the jaw and some Steve Austin stomps in the corner. A trip to the floor goes nowhere so it’s Dream hammering away back inside to slow Gargano down. Dream whips him so hard into the corner that Gargano is flipped upside down, followed by a neckbreaker for two.
We hit the chinlock for a bit until Johnny fights up with the hard shots to the face. Gargano scores with the slingshot spear and Dream bails to the floor where the Cannonball (more like a Blockbuster) from the apron puts him down again. Back in and Johnny misses his rolling kick to the head, allowing Dream to nail a Fameasser. An exchange of kicks to the head is capped off by Gargano clotheslining the heck out of Dream for two and they’re both spent.
They head to the apron for the slugout and Dream tries the Death Valley Driver on the apron. That’s broken up as well but Johnny tweaks his knee. Dream sends it into the steps and hits his twisting DDT back inside for a very near fall. Gargano’s springboard is broken up with a superkick but Dream misses the Purple Rainmaker onto the apron. Johnny nails him with a suicide dive and puts on the Gargano Escape on the floor.
The threat of a countout brings him back to reality but Dream beats the count as well. Gargano loads up a hanging DDT off the apron but lets Dream go before going too far. A fan with a Johnny Wrestling sign gets Gargano’s attention and he heads back inside. Dream calls him Johnny Failure as Johnny lowers the kneepad and the distraction allows Dream to hit the Dream Valley Driver for the pin at 15:51.
Rating: B+. This took its time getting going but once they got started it was off to the races. The Gargano story is rather interesting and while you can see the likely ending, the road there is one of the most entertaining things that NXT does. Throw in the fact that NXT is willing to let Gargano lose the big match and the drama will be off the charts. It’s also a great sign to see Dream get a huge win like this, as he beat one of the top stars in the promotion clean. Great stuff all around.
We get a split JOHNNY FAILURE/JOHNNY WRESTLING chant as Gargano is even more distraught. He walks off through the crowd, which sings the Goodbye Song. There’s also a JOHNNY chant as he leaves through the curtains to end the show.
Overall Rating: A-. Sometimes I can’t wrap my head around how well run this place is. They cut their losses on a character, debuted a stable, set up a rematch for the Women’s Title and had a great main event, all while advancing the overarching Black story, all in about an hour. On the main roster, that’s four months worth of work if they’re putting in the effort. Another incredible show this week and I don’t know why that still surprises me.
Kassius Ohno b. Kona Reeves – Discus forearm
Forgotten Sons b. Street Profits – Reverse DDT/middle rope stomp to Dawkins
Kairi Sane b. Trish Adora – Insane Elbow
Velveteen Dream b. Johnny Gargano – Dream Valley Driver
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and pick up the paperback edition of KB’s Complete 2003 Monday Night Raw Reviews (also available as an e-book) from Amazon. Check out the information here:
And check out my Amazon author page with cheap wrestling books at: