Date: September 20, 2023
Location: Arthur Ashe Stadium, New York City, New York
Commentators: Excalibur, Tony Schiavone, Taz, Ian Riccaboni
It’s time for a(nother) big show with Grand Slam from a big old tennis stadium in New York. This time around we have a major main event as well, with MJF defending the World Title against Samoa Joe. That should make for a heck of a match, with some more title matches sprinkled throughout. Let’s get to it.
Ring Of Honor World Title/New Japan Strong Openweight Title: Claudio Castagnoli vs. Eddie Kingston
Title for title and Wheeler Yuta is here with Castagnoli. They waste no time in exchanging the forearms and going to the floor. Kingston chops away against the barricade before going after the knee back inside. Castagnoli is fine enough to gutwrench him into a powerbomb but the Neutralizer is blocked. Kingston knocks him to the ramp (because there’s a ramp) but gets suplexed hard onto said ramp. Back in and Castagnoli goes up for a middle rope double stomp but a Swan Dive misses.
We take a break and come back with Kingston Hulking Up and getting two off a backslide. An enziguri sets up a t-bone suplex and a Saito suplex gets two. The rapid fire chops in the corner wake Castagnoli up but a right hand puts him down. They do the big slow motion chop off until Castagnoli hits a clothesline for two.
A Riccola Bomb is countered into a sunset flip for two but Castagnoli uppercuts the heck out of him for two. The Riccola Bomb connects for two more and the New York fans are VERY pleased. Back up and Kingston hits some spinning backfists into the half and half suplex into the third backfist into the northern lights bomb for a very near fall. Another backfist into a powerbomb gives Kingston the pin and the title at 15:16.
Result: Eddie Kingston b. Claudio Castagnoli – Powerbomb (15:16)
Post match Castagnoli begrudgingly shows respect and hands over the title before leaving. Kingston gets the big moment and the fans seem rather pleased.
Earlier this week, the Kingdom was by Roderick Strong’s bedside in the hospital, where he has received a card from Olga thanking him for promoting Neck Health Awareness Month. Strong calls out for Adam Cole, who shows up immediately. Cole trades some barbs with the Kingdom before the two of them leave. Cole has to go as well because of MJF’s title match at Grand Slam, so Roderick tells him to just freaking go.
Christian Cage is ready to take out Sting and Darby Allin, but he’s also ready for Luchasaurus to get a TNT Title shot on Collision, but Sting is barred from ringside. New York baseball jokes are included.
Chris Jericho vs. Sammy Guevara
Guevara has a Jericho style light up vest and gets rapped to the ring by Monteasy. They try the wrestling to start before switching to chopping away. Guevara hits a dropkick but Jericho isn’t happy with him trying the Sex Gods pose. Jericho hits a backbreaker to send him outside but misses the triangle dropkick. Guevara’s dive is broken up and they both crash out to the floor as we take a break.
Back with Jericho hitting a heck of a clothesline for two but Guevara grabs a Codebreaker. Jericho bails to the floor and gets taken out with a moonsault, only to dropkick Guevara out of the air back inside. Another triangle dropkick doesn’t work as Sammy kicks…the air in the general vicinity of Jericho’s head.
A top rope cutter connects but the GTH is countered into the Walls. Guevara breaks that up as well and they both go up top, where Guevara grabs a twisting cutter for two more. Jericho hits the bulldog but comes back with a knee to the face. The GTH connects this time and Guevara goes up, only to shooting star into the Codebreaker for the pin at 15:09.
Result: Chris Jericho b. Sammy Guevara – Codebreaker (15:09)
Post match they hug until Guevara kicks him low. Cue Don Callis, who has a new member of the family.
MJF has been mad at Samoa Joe for eight years and promises to choke him out. Adam Cole is there for the fist bump but answers a call from Roderick Strong instead. Cole goes off to assure Strong that he isn’t going to die, leaving MJF to promise victory over Joe.
Don Callis promises answers on Rampage. Daniel Garcia comes in and almost gets in an argument with Sammy Guevara but Callis gets Guevara out of there.
International Title: Rey Fenix vs. Jon Moxley
Fenix, with Alex Abrahantes, is challenging. They fight on the ramp before the bell, with Fenix getting the better of things and sending him inside to officially start. Moxley stomps him down and they’re already back on the floor, with Moxley knocking him over the barricade. Fenix tries a barricade walk but gets pulled into a double arm DDT on the floor instead.
Back in and Fenix hits a rolling cutter into a frog splash for two. Fenix knocks him to the floor and drapes him over the apron for a top rope…I think knee? Either way it sends us to a break and we come back with Moxley sending him to the ramp for the stomp. Back in and Moxley hits a piledriver for two. Fenix comes back with a hard shot and the Black Fire Driver for…..two, despite Moxley absolutely not moving. Fenix picks him up and hits another for the pin and the title at 11:34.
Result: Rey Fenix b. Jon Moxley – Black Fire Driver (11:34)
Samoa Joe is ready to end MJF.
Post break we’re told that Jon Moxley left the ring under his own power. That’s great to hear.
There’s a big multi-team match on Rampage for a Ring Of Honor Tag Team Title shot.
Women’s Title: Saraya vs. Toni Storm
Saraya, with Ruby Soho, is defending and slaps away to start. Storm smiles at her (Saraya: “WHY ARE YOU SMILING?”) and the brawl is on with Storm taking over. Storm crawls under the ring and comes up with some shoes to beat up Soho. Another shoe to the face gives Storm two on Saraya and we take a break.
Back with Saraya in trouble but Soho steals the spray paint from Storm. Said paint is slipped to Saraya, who blasts Storm in the face and hits the Nightcap for two. Back up and Storm kisses Saraya, setting up Storm Zero for two. The hup attack in the corner misses Saraya (by a lot) but hits exposed buckle. The Nightcap retains the title at 8:49.
Result: Saraya b. Toni Storm – Nightcap (8:49)
Here’s what’s coming on various shows.
Video on Samoa Joe vs. MJF.
AEW World Title: Samoa Joe vs. Maxwell Jacob Friedman
Only MJF’s AEW World Title is on the line. MJF gets a Bret Hart tribute entrance, with a fan catching MJF in the hallway and saying “go get em champ.” MJF gives him his scarf….and tells him he’s adopted. MJF’s jacket and gear is rather New York sports themed and Joe takes over fast to start. A running big boot into the backsplash gets two and we take a break with MJF in trouble.
Back with MJF scoring with a kick to the chest and some clotheslines but Joe won’t go down. Instead Joe drops him again and rips off his Mets inspired jersey. That’s enough to fire MJF up and he hammers away in the corner, setting up a Hulk Hogan impression and the Kangaroo Kick to send Joe outside. Joe is right back up with a Death Valley Driver on the apron and Joe laughs like a villain. Joe release Rock Bottoms him through a table at ringside for two back inside.
They head outside again with Joe peeling back the floor mat for a piledriver and here are the trainers to check on MJF. Joe beats up said trainers and gets two back inside. MJF spits in his face and grabs a sitout powerbomb before throwing on a sleeper. That’s countered into the Koquina Clutch in all of a second but MJF kicks him low for the escape.
The diamond ring is loaded up but the referee takes it away, allowing Joe to hit his own low blow. The Muscle Buster gets two so Joe grabs a sleeper. Cue Adam Cole to cheer MJF on and the third arm drop doesn’t go through. MJF gets his own sleeper but the referee gets bumped. Joe slips out and goes after Cole so MJF unravels some tape to choke Joe out and retain at 18:30.
Result: Maxwell Jacob Friedman b. Samoa Joe – Rear naked choke (18:30)
Post match Cole hides the tape and Joe shakes MJF’s hand to end the show (with Cole limping, apparently having hurt his ankle running in).
Eddie Kingston b. Claudio Castagnoli – Powerbomb
Chris Jericho b. Sammy Guevara – Codebreaker
Rey Fenix b. Jon Moxley – Black Fire Driver
Saraya b. Toni Storm – Nightcap
Maxwell Jacob Friedman b. Samoa Joe – Rear naked choke
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