Ring of Honor
The show opened with a slobber knocker of a match between Shane Taylor and Jeff Cobb. Cobb has run clean through his competition as of late, and that includes Punishment Martinez (We know why that happened.) It came 20a huge surprise that these two men would be booked together. At one point in the match, the two big men executed a super-sized Canadian Destroyer. Shane was meant to give the new champ the challenge he needed before bigger and better things. Taylor put Cobb over by the end to set up another potential rivalry.
The team of Cheeseburger and Eli Isom finally got a chance to take the ring together. Isom, running high on his recent string of success, came ready to take out the Bouncers, while the Bruiser was less than impressed with the match of the night. Cheese wasn’t much help, but he brought what he had. Isom continues to rise with another show of strength and endurance. He was the victim of an XXL frog splash from the Bruiser that ended with the anticipated three-count.
The return of Dalton Castle was made possible through an alliance with Jay Lethal and Jonathan Gresham. Lethal and Gresham, who have put on a few noteworthy performances lately, obviously would choose the Peacock as their unknown partner to take on the uncrowned champ, Matt Taven, and the Kingdom. Gresham’s ring work was a lot more lighthearted than normal; he set the table for the antics that would follow when Castle hit the ring. With Taven claiming to be the uncrowned ROH champ, it is a natural conflict between him and Jay Lethal. He now has Kenny King in the rearview and can focus on working through this series against Taven.
The week following the teaming of Tamina and Nia Jax means it’s time to get some answers. There would be none of that, though, but we would see Ember Moon challenge Tamina. The women didn’t mince words; Ember went right to the attack as she has with Jax time and time again. Moon just did not have enough flower power to take down the dominant Tamina nor Jax, for that matter. Nia put the emphasize on the dissolution of the friendship between her and Ember with a mean boot to the chest.
I’m still riding high on Bobby Lashley this week. He led Lio Rush down to troll the KC crowd as the big man hit his Mr. Olympia poses. Lio embodied the troll status to the fullest with his chuckles as Bobby hit his favorite poses. For a change, it was Elias doing the interrupting of a segment. The Drifter feigned a call to child services to report the Lio Rush as a child in danger. Lashley took the mic and dared the master of music to get in the ring and back up his talk. Their match served as a qualifier for the final Raw Survivor team spot. Lio came back into play when he caused Elias to miss the 10-count, but he stuck around too long and ended up helping Elias get his payback on both of them before the win could set in.
The Evil Queen, Alexa Bliss, set out to pit friends against one another to determine the last member of the Raw women’s team. She chose the tandem of Sasha Banks and Bayley to test their loyalty to one another, because why not? There were no sketchy actions taken by either woman during the match. That’s great, too; we’ve been there before. Since neither would turn on the other, Tamina, Nia, and Mickie would decide the match for them. Sasha and Bayley were then ushered from the ring to make way for the actual new member Ruby Riott. I don’t know where Sasha was during the SmackDown invasion, but good for her.
For some reason, the feud between the New Day and the Bar was extended for another week. It’s true that the addition of the Big Show makes ideal to book six-man tag matches, but let’s commence to beating this horse. The New Day is on their way to the Survivor Series elimination match after this. You’ve seen this matchup many times, and the biggest difference, Big Show, brought impact with his infamous knockout punch. Kofi Kingston caught the punch for his midflight movie.
Mixed Match Challenge
The mystique of Lashley’s domination was protected when he faced Braun Strowman to a near stalemate. Lio Rush played his part in providing a distraction, but it was Ember Moon who tried to level the outside interference again. She was intercepted by Mickie James in a wicked fashion, yet it was not enough to keep Moon from dropping a monster Eclipse for the win that continues their streak.
The main event was an absolute treat from Lio Rush and Cedric Alexander. Rush previously claimed that Cedric was a man without confidence. Apparently, he also thought he was a man without speed and agility, but he was wrong about that. Alexander countered that speed with power, too. Rush sold each one as if he was rocked to the tips of his toes. I’m not sure if their first Spanish Fly was botched or not, but Rush crawled right out of it into the next spot. That second Spanish Fly was on point, now. Rush popped up off the Lumbar Check like one of those kids on an air mattress for his first loss in his cruiserweight run.
The un-de-feat-ed streak was on the line for Bianca Belair, and Mia Yim brought the pain. The EST gave us a show of resilience through the constant barrage of attacks and counters from Yim. The power of Belair out-willed her penchant for showboating to the point that she eventually forched Yim onto her shoulders for an undefeated driver and win.
No longer the member of a trio, The Mack stepped up to Mil Muertes a few months back to show the Man of a Thousand Deaths that he was never scared. Ultimo Lucha served as the culmination of their confrontation, and Mil came with caskets in tow. The thing didn’t get murky until Mil pulled an ice pick out of the assortment of weapons and busted The Mack open. Both men would spill blood because The Mack split a portion of Mil’s mask before blasting him with a cane. The blatant disrespect from The Mack won out with the help of three stunners, two middle fingers, and a brick. Shout out to the Mack for co-opting the Steve Austin gimmick with actual Budwiesers, but can we not get a black man’s drink? Henn dog? Mad Dog?
Kiera Hogan attempted to intervene following Su Yung’s match only to find out what’s really been up with Allie. Her old friend seems to have come down with a case of that undead, and while Hogan was trying to figure out what happened, Yung rolled back in and flattened the Girl on Fire.