Post by Ross Report on May 12, 2020 23:09:07 GMT
Is it just me or does SLAM! seem to get bigger and better each and every passing week?
Before we get to this week's show though, it would be remiss of me not to mention Friday Night Fury, which saw Kelly Klein continue to build a ton of momentum, Asuka prove how deadly a competitor she is, and "Rhino" make impressively short work of "Killer Kross" in a hard-hitting Television Championship match! "The Man Beast" is on an absolute tear right now, and it'll be interesting to see who steps up to challenge him for the gold next!
Getting back to SLAM! though, this week's show kicked off with Jamie Noble still contemplating "MJF's" offer of £100,000 in exchange for the Civil War contract guaranteeing him a World Championship at any time or place of his choosing. It's really not hard to understand why the offer is so tempting as well! After all, while the shot at Friedman might be guaranteed, him walking away with the biggest prize in the game isn't quite as sure a bet! Certainly not when compared to one hundred thousand big ones being deposited in his bank account, that's for sure! It has to be said though that Nidia doesn't seem particularly happy with her man giving "MJF's" proposal so much consideration, storming out on "The Redneck Messiah" early in the night, while the World Champion himself would pay a visit to the 2020 Civil War winner a little later on, putting a one week time limit on his offer. No doubt that weighed heavily on Noble's mind heading into our mega main event, which we'll talk about properly in a bit.
Elsewhere and things continue to be extremely strained between Santino Marella and "The Honky Tonk Man." Last week's SLAM! saw "Honky" refusing to tag his so-called partner into the match against "Best Friends," leading to the duo somehow walking out with the titles by the skin of their teeth! Things only got more tense when "Tokyo Vice" showed up afterwards, at which point Santino was abandoned by his partner to take a hell of a beating at their hands! Needless to say then, "The Italian Stallion" had a bone to pick with "Honky," only to have "Mr. Shake, Rattle And Roll" turn things around by claiming he tried warning Santino to run away with him, only Marella must not have heard it. While I've not gone back and watched the tape to verify, I certainly can't say I remember hearing anything of the sort either! Still, "Tokyo Vice" would cement their championship intentions later in the broadcast when they laid claim to the next shot at the champions, a match one has to believe will happen a lot sooner rather than later! And like I said last week, with all the problems between Santino Marella and "The Honky Tonk Man" right now, Katsuyori Shibata and "El Desperado" couldn't have picked a better time to get in the championship hunt!
Who would have thought in the year 2020 we'd be seeing a barnburner of a match between Will Ospreay and "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan? Not this old Okey, that's for damn sure! And yet, that's exactly what we got last night as "The Aerial Assassin" made his debut against the grizzled veteran from Glens Falls! While Ospreay utilized his high-flying skills to great effect, Duggan looked to ground-and-pound his younger opponent down to size, with that contrast of styles making for a thrilling encounter! In the end though, the former member of the British Armed Forces was able to hang Duggan out to dry, allowing him to connect with an improvised Os Cutter to pick up the impressive win! And no doubt there's plenty more to come from both these superstars in the coming weeks and months!
On Friday's Fury, "Mustache Mountain" sent out an open invite to their former "British Strong Style" partner Pete Dunne to meet them in the middle of the ring on SLAM! Well, "The Bruiserweight" did just that, as Trent Seven tried to make Dunne see reason after his recent violent actions directed towards Samoa Joe. No doubt "The Don" was just as concerned as the rest of us about the path Dunne was choosing to walk, offering to reunite "BSS" so they might help each other be better. For a fleeting moment, it looked as if Seven's efforts might have worked too...only for the former World Champion to take out Tyler Bate with a low blow before using that damn sledgehammer to sickening effect once again, this time to break Trent Seven's hand! It's one thing seeing Pete Dunne try and permanently take out his worst nemesis, but to see him do the same to his former best friends? I never thought I'd see the day! And yet here we are, with Trent Seven looking at a long spell on the shelf, while a justifiably angry Tyler Bate has demanded a match with Dunne next week, looking for retribution for his tag team partner! This whole sordid situation is so sad to see for a number of reasons, and I just hope that things don't get even more out of hand before it's all settled.
"The Flying Fatus" announced themselves in a big way during their in-ring debut on Fury a couple of weeks ago, but they faced a really tough task against "The Lucavi" duo of Shannon Moore and Chuck Palumbo this past week. That combo has thus far proven to be incredibly effective in tag team competition, with wins over "Pretty Deadly" and "Tokyo Vice" to back up their credentials. Still, Jimmy and Jey were more than up to the task, despite finding themselves on the backfoot during the opening minutes of this one. It's to the Fatu twins' credit that they fought their way back into the contest, resulting in some edge-of-the-seat action as both teams looked for that all-important victory! Unfortunately for "The Lucavi" though, while they seemed to be more on the same page than they were in their last outing, I did get a sense that there was still some semblance of tension between them. And while that might not have played directly into the finish, it did provide "The Flying Fatus" the opening they needed to pick up the duke, as the Anoa'i Family continue to have a great year in the EWA! However, Jey Fatu would later find himself in another tense confrontation backstage with "The Dogs of War," after these two teams shared heated words the previous week as well. On this occasion though, things quickly got physical when James Storm and Jax Dane took offense to Jey insulting them! As such, Dane beat him down until his partner finally pulled him away, trying to stop things from escalating any further. Alas, another comment from Jey soon changed "The Cowboy's" mind, taking him down with the Last Call and then stepping back to allow Jax to deliver his version of the Dominator right onto a crate! Seems to me that rather than settle any issues between these two teams, the actions of "The Dogs of War" might have instead added more gas to the fire, as Jey and his brother Jimmy will no doubt be on the hunt for revenge!
Our brand new Women's Champion came down to ringside for another chance to gloat about all of her success and how much better she is than everyone else, as she looked to announce another "worthy" opponent to wrestle. Just like last week, this involved picking an independent wrestler rather a contracted EWA talent, in this instance a young lady by the name of Alexia Nicole...only to find this challenger had been trapped inside her locker room, with the culprit responsible quickly revealing herself as none other than Toni Storm! That's right, the Gold Coast native who put her job on the line at Civil War was back, and she quickly took the fight to Aliyah, causing "The Boujee Bratz" to hightail it out of there! Does this mean Storm is back on the roster? I wish I had an inside scoop to offer, but I'm just as in the dark as everyone else! One thing I can say with utmost certainty though is that Toni Storm clearly has unfinished business with Aliyah, whether the Women's Champion likes it or not!
As they discussed Rhea Ripley's potential return to the women's division, Tom Lawlor and "The Full Metal Maniac" found themselves interrupted by "Ryback," who wanted to talk strategy ahead of his and Lawlor's tag match with Goldberg and "UltraMantis Black" later in the broadcast. This would obviously be the first time these two had teamed together, and it made a nice change of pace to see they seemed to be on the same page heading into the contest. Much more so than their opponents, that's for sure, with Goldberg having little time for the "eccentricities" of his makeshift tag team partner! The match got off to a spirited start as Lawlor and Black showed off their skills, before "Ryback" received the tag and started utilizing his brute strength to keep "The Devious One" on the ropes. Like Scott Stanford, I thought business might be about to pick-up when "UMB" finally managed to tag out to Goldberg, yet "Da Man" refused to give the EWA Universe the clash they wanted to see, avoiding "Ryback's" every effort to fight before tagging his reluctant partner back in! Yet that in itself turned out to be a ruse, as Goldberg would finally get involved by attacking "The Big Guy" while he was focused on "Black!" That changed the entire complexion of this one, albeit temporarily, until "Ryback" finally managed to tag back to Lawlor! The MMA veteran came in like a house on fire, dishing out a beating to "UltraMantis"...yet at the same time, Jeremy Wyatt had come sauntering down to ringside, where he decided to trip Lawlor as he tried hitting the ropes, obviously still having a bone to pick with him after their match last week! Putting that distraction to good use, "Black" finally tagged Goldberg back in, who NAILED Lawlor with a huge Spear to score the win, while "UltraMantis" stopped "Ryback" from breaking the count! That's another big win for Goldberg, and perhaps more importantly, another big reason for why Tom Lawlor will no doubt be wanting a rematch against Wyatt somewhere down the line!
Bo Dallas made it clear that he's on the search for a "BOdyguard" to ensure someone's around to watch his back at all times, and it seems as if "The Inspirational One" has settled on some candidates! He's whittled it down to Brodus Clay, Titus O'Neil, "Big E" Langston, Baron Corbin, Mojo Rawley, Mark Henry, Sawyer Fulton, Brian Cage, Hernandez, Monty Brown, Mason Ryan, Vladimir Kozlov, Eli Cottonwood and a "TBA" 14th contestant, while a panel of Dallas himself, Kylie Rae and a third judge to be announced next week will start putting them through their paces next week! Who will he choose? Find out on EWA's Next Top BOdyguard next Sunday!
It was great to hear from Carmella this week, as the former Women's Champion took time out from a no doubt busy Mother's Day to call into the show via satellite and give an update on her status after that surprise return at Civil War! "The Princess of Staten Island" talked up what an honor it was to share the ring with our incredible current women's division, while also stressing that her appearance was only ever meant as a one-off, seemingly dashing any hopes of a full-time return. Hearing that certainly didn't seem to please Asuka, with "The Empress of Tomorrow" still furious over Carmella eliminating her at Civil War and refusing to take "no" for an answer as she seeks a match with the second generation superstar! Alas, with Carmella happily hanging up her boots, it looks very much as if Asuka is just setting herself up for disappointment by continuing to push this issue.
Elias Samson and Matt Riddle were scheduled to have a singles match, something I was very much looking forward to see, but things got off to a rocky start when "The Drifter" seemed more interested in trying to sing to the EWA Universe instead, something even Riddle himself was keen to hear. After Elias couldn't get his guitar in tune though, he tried taking a wild swing at his opponent, who avoided the blow and caused Samson to inadvertently bounce the guitar off the top rope and hit himself in the face! While Riddle was offered the chance to make the cover by the official however, he instead picked up the shattered guitar and started playing it, causing the Referee to just call off the match altogether, making this a night to forget for both competitors.
At some point over the last seven days, Mandy Rose apparently got wind of the fact that Judy Bagwell shamelessly flirted with "MJF" on last week's show, causing "The Golden Goddess" to seek out Buff Daddy's Momma on the latest SLAM! Shockingly though, "Rude Jude" wasn't backing down, even threatening to take Mandy to the proverbial woodshed just like she did at Civil War, causing a flustered Rose to storm off in anger! I can't quite believe I'm saying this, but keep your eyes peeled on this situation, folks...something tells me it's far from over!
In the meantime, Leva Bates followed up on her "coming out party" seven days prior by being interviewed by Renee Young! The former Women's Champion made it clear she doesn't want to be referred to by the name "Blue Pants/Pantaloons" anymore, but I think the biggest takeaway from this interview might be that it seems as if she's suffered some kind of mental break. Which is not something I say with any judgment, obviously, but between the desperate desire to please her daddy and the way she was looking at Kylie Rae in the distance like a lion hunting its prey, something has evidently snapped inside her head. I just hope that Leva gets the help she needs before it causes her do anything she might later regret.
Main event time, and with Jamie Noble having a lot weighing on his mind coming into this one, that made for quite the interesting dynamic! Not to mention the fact that you had the World and National Champions on one side of the ring and their de facto number one contenders on the other! We'd already seen two great tag team matches earlier in the show, but it's fair to say this one may have been the best of the bunch! But then, how could expect anything less than a slobberknocker with this kind of talent involved? "MJF" and Sammy Guevara's clash of egos certainly didn't help the champions much in the early goings, allowing Hawkins and Noble to quickly stamp their authority! However, neither Friedman and Guevara are afraid to bend the rules when necessary, giving them an opening back into the contest as they proceeded to isolate Curt Hawkins for a long stretch, who once again showed his guts and determination in the face of those who don't think he belongs, just like we saw at Civil War! Eventually, Hawkins would find a way to tag in "The Redneck Messiah," turning this match on its head...at least until "iRoyalty" decided to make their way down to ringside, having been responsible for a sickening attack on Curt Hawkins last week! I don't know what Saint Synclair and Jamie Senegal have against "The Ultimate Underdog," but when they tried to interfere, Hawkins took the fight to them instead, wiping the duo out with an Asai moonsault! That left Jamie Noble in a precarious situation though as "MJF" and Guevara worked him over, only for the 2020 Civil War winner to send "The Salt of the Earth" tumbling out of the ring while "The Spanish God" was heading to the top rope, allowing Noble to race up after Sammy before delivering a huge Super Tiger Driver to put him down for the count! Alas, Jamie wouldn't get much of a chance to enjoy the victory though as "MJF" immediately struck him with the World Championship almost as soon as the bell rang, something that is no doubt going to give Noble plenty to think about heading into next week's big decision! On the one hand, he was obviously victorious here tonight, proving it can be done...but on the other, he didn't pin "MJF" and was instead left laying by "The Top 1%er!" Is that worth risking a shot at the biggest prize in the game? Or should Noble play it safe and accept the offer of $100,000 for his "Anytime, Anyplace" contract? Only time will tell!
With all that done and dusted then, here's my top
1. Curt Hawkins/Jamie Noble
2. "The Flying Fatus"
3. Goldberg/"UltraMantis Black"
It was undoubtedly a strong week for tag teams, even those thrown together by a random twist of fate! I've given Hawkins and Noble top spot after securing a huge win over the World and National Champions, and that despite the attempted interference of "iRoyalty" as well! In second place, "The Flying Fatus" ended the undefeated run of Chuck Palumbo and Shannon Moore while also making it two wins out of two for themselves! And last but by no means least, Goldberg and "UltraMantis Black" also picked up a big victory by putting down two massively talented opponents in Tom Lawlor and "Ryback." That not only meant that "The Devious One" has won his first match, but also that Goldberg is still yet to be pinned or submitted since returning to the company!
All in all then, another eventful show from top to bottom! And with matches like Maven versus Will Ospreay, Io Shirai versus La Hiedra, Jeremy Wyatt versus "Ryback," and Jimmy Fatu versus James Storm, next week's show is already shaping up to be another can't miss episode of EWA television! Make sure you tune in next Sunday and don't miss out on any of the action as we head to Des Moines! Until then,