Flip Gordan vs. Silas Young in an "I Quit" Match Ended in a No Contest
Gordan will be taking on Bully Ray in an "I Quit" match at Final Battle this Friday, so this served as a warm-up of sorts for Gordan, who was already supposed to face Young on this show but wanted it to be contested under "I Quit" rules given their bad blood over the past few months. I appreciated that they didn't rely heavily on the stipulation while also making the most of the lack of disqualifications by battering each other with weapons and going to the extreme. In addition to Gordan's aggressive side being established, his feud with Bully was furthered effectively when Bully came down to the ring to help Young lay out Gordan. Unless I missed something, though, this matchup never had an actual finish.
ROH World Tag Team Champions SoCal Uncensored, The Briscoes, and The Young Bucks Brawled
It's cool that there has been so much build for the upcoming Ladder War at Final Battle in recent weeks. As stoked as I am for Jay Lethal vs. Cody for the ROH World Championship, Ladder War deserves to close out the show. At any rate, this was a simple yet solid segment with the three teams attacking each other and SCU standing tall on the ladders with their titles in tow. Look for that bout to be an instant classic, similar to the last Ladder War installment from two years ago (which I was also in attendance for).
WWE Champion Daniel Bryan def. Mustafa Ali (Non-title)
Ali was the last person I expected to interrupt Bryan, but it was a pleasant surprise. I have no clue whether this was a one-off or an official call-up for him (similar to how Drake Maverick, Lio Rush and The Lucha Dragons continue to appear on 205 Live despite being regulars on Raw), but I really hope it's the latter. They had a great exchange on the microphone and the subsequent match was equally entertaining. It wasn't the blow-away bout it had the potential to be, mind you, but Ali scored a decent amount of offense in defeat and had an impressive outing, so I can't complain.
The New Day Hosted a Rap Battle Between SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Bar and The Usos
I got my hopes up for this segment following the success of the first rap battle hosted on SmackDown Live from one year ago between New Day and The Usos, but this was still enjoyable. The material wasn't nearly as funny or as edgy this time around, but at least the effort was there. Most importantly, the segment served its purpose in hyping up the SmackDown Tag Team Championship Triple Threat for TLC.
Acting Raw General Manager Baron Corbin Interrupted Intercontinental Champion Seth Rollins
In addition to addressing his recent rivalry with Dean Ambrose and their match coming up at TLC on Sunday, Rollins went off on the current state of Raw. He was basically the voice of the people by bringing up every criticism fans have had of the product lately, but what's awful about that is how that means the company is well aware of the problems with Raw at the moment and how they aren't doing anything to solve them. If nothing else, the announcement of Rollins vs. Corbin in a TLC matchup for the Intercontinental Championship in the main event during this segment was a nice hook for the night.
Bobby Roode and Chad Gable def. AOP and Drake Maverick in a 3-on-2 Handicap Match to Win the Raw Tag Team Championship
If Roode and Gable won their Handicap match against AOP and Maverick last week, they would have earned another shot at the Raw Tag Team Championship (after squandering their last opportunity a few weeks ago), but they didn't. Thus, it made zero sense for a championship clash to be booked anyway, but at least this was the most bearable thing we've seen from these two teams yet. You had to know that Roode and Gable were winning as soon as Maverick tagged in. It's a fine little reboot for the division, but seeing is believing as far as whether WWE will treat Roode and Gable like true competitors and not as a joke. As for AOP, they're pretty much dead in the water at this point.
The Mack def. Jake Crist to Qualify for the Impact X-Division Championship Ultimate X Match at Homecoming
I haven't seen too much of the Crist brothers in action to get a great feel for how they are in singles competition, but this was a fun little match while it lasted. It would have benefited from the oVe interference being to kept to a minimum, but it an enjoyable opener, nonetheless. I was actually surprised Crist qualified over Mack, if only because I believe Mack would be a better addition to that bout and I highly doubt Crist is winning the title.
Allie def. Heather Monroe
Apparently the story with Allie is that as a result of traveling to the "undead realm" a few months ago, she lost her soul and has since become a minion of Su Yung's. Her gradual descent into the darkness has been well done in recent weeks and I love the modifications she's made to her appearance and in-ring work to signify her change in character. This was an extended squash to give her a decisive victory. Afterward, Allie finally turned on Kiera Hogan, and I assume this will lead to Rosemary returning and siding with Hogan against Allie and Yung.
Matt Riddle def. Punishment Martinez
Martinez's NXT signing wasn't confirmed all too long ago, and already he's debuting on NXT TV. That's an encouraging sign for his future, and I honestly have faith that they'll utilize him correctly on the brand (if only for his size). Sure, he lost in his debut match, but so did Kyle O'Reilly, Bobby Fish and many others. The important thing is that he had a strong showing and impressed the audience with his skill set. Afterward, Riddle was ambushed by Kassius Ohno, so a rematch between them is inevitable.
Forgotten Sons def. Raul Mendoza and Humberto Carrillo
Forgotten Sons haven't done a ton for me in the past, but this just might have been their best outing yet. Granted, Mendoza and Carrillo had a ton to do with that because they're a terrific tandem and are a blast to watch in the ring, but Forgotten Sons more than held their own and showed that they are worth the investment. NXT has a very well-rounded tag team division at the moment and it's cool to see all of them getting an equal amount of attention.
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