Welcome back TJR readers! Did you spend all day Friday canceling your family reunion, and miss WWE Smackdown? Perhaps you spent all day Monday making sure none of your money was counterfeit and missed Raw.
Worry not for I have returned with another edition of the Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week.
10. Pretty Deadly Earn Tag Title Shot
It did not take Pretty Deadly long to make an impact on the main roster. This past Friday on Smackdown, a tag team gauntlet match took place to find the next challengers for the titles. The Street Profits, The O.C., The Brawling Brutes, The LWO, Pretty Deadly, and Hit Row were all involved In the match. The match saw The Brawling Brutes put on an amazing performance, but come up a little short when they were defeated in the end by Pretty Deadly. Pretty Deadly will now face WWE Undisputed Tag Team Champions Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn at the June 30th episode of Smackdown from London, England. Pretty Deadly are originally from Great Britain, giving them the home field advantage in the match. This is of course unless their team name reminds the British fans of what happened to their beloved queen. (TJRWrestling)
— WWE on FOX (@WWEonFOX) June 17, 2023
9. Gable Stevenson Appears on NXT
After almost two years, Gable Stevenson may finally be getting closer to actually competing in a WWE ring. This past Tuesday on NXT, Stevenson’s real-life brother Damon Kemp challenged Eddy Thorpe to a Raw Underground match. Later in the night, Stevenson came to see Thorpe in the locker room. The Olympic Gold Medalist Stevenson then offered to train Thorpe against his brother for the match, which is scheduled to take place on July 4th. For those that don’t remember, Raw Underground was the short-lived segment fronted by Shane McMahon that saw WWE stars take part in fight club-style matches away from the ring. McMahon is not expected to be a part of this match, likely as he knows there is no way he can top his WrestleMania 39 match. (TJRWrestling)
— WWE (@WWE) June 21, 2023
8. AEW Announces Men’s and Women’s Owen Hart Foundation Tournament Brackets
This past Wednesday on Dynamite, the brackets for the second annual Men’s and Women’s Owen Hart Foundation Tournaments were announced. The Women’s Tournament will start tonight and will see first-round matches of Anna Jay vs. Skye Blue, Nyla Rose vs. Willow Nightingale, Athena vs. Billie Starkz and Dr. Britt Baker vs. Ruby Soho. The Men’s Tournament will kick off this Sunday at Forbidden Door with the huge matchup of CM Punk facing Satoshi Kojima. The other first-round matchups will see Roderick Strong face Samoa Joe, Dustin Rhodes face Powerhouse Hobbs and Juice Robinson face Ricky Starks. All of the Elite thought about entering the tournament as well until they found out Punk was in it and decided to stay home instead. (TJRWrestling)
7. AEW Blind Eliminator Tag Team Tournament Announced
It was the week of tournament announcements for AEW this week. This past Wednesday on Dynamite, it was announced that a Blind Eliminator Tag Team Tournament will be held to determine the number one contenders for FTR’s AEW Tag Team Championships. The teams will be determined through a random draw, with it being announced this week that the first team in the tournament is MJF and Adam Cole. I think this is a brilliant idea by Tony Khan, as clearly, you cannot find a number one contender from the 18 actual tag teams you have under contract. (TJRWrestling)
6. Tommaso Ciampa Returns to Monday Night Raw
For the first time in almost a year, Tommaso Ciampa has returned to a WWE ring. This past Monday on Raw, The Miz appeared in the ring to give an open challenge. Ciampa then made his surprise return, confronting his former alley. Ciampa then punched The Miz, before beating him quickly in a match. Ciampa has not been seen since last August due to his hip surgery. Upon finally returning to Raw, Ciampa immediately asked who the creepy guy with a mustache at Gorilla Position was. (TJRWrestling)
— WWE (@WWE) June 22, 2023
5. Luchasaurus Captures the TNT Championship
The first match in the history of AEW Collision ended up being a memorable one. In the first match on the debut episode of the show, Luchasaurus defeated Wardlow to capture the TNT Championship. The finish of the match saw Christian interfere and hit Wardlow with a camera, allowing Luchasaurus to get the win. Incredibly, Luchasaurus is the fifth different wrestler to hold the TNT Championship this year, with it now being known as the Ric Flair’s spouse of title belts. (TJRWrestling)
4. Logan Paul Enters Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match
The Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match went from six competitors to seven really fast this week. This past Monday on Raw, Logan Paul made his return to the show, sitting on top of a ladder while giving a promo. Paul then announced that he was officially entering the Money in the Bank Ladder Match. Paul, unlike the other six men in the match, did not actually have to qualify for the match. This fact upset a number of wrestling fans, who felt like Paul does not deserve a spot in the match. Personally, I love that the WWE is handing out spots to people who got famous on the internet, as it means that Mandy Rose has a chance to enter the Women’s Money in the Bank. (TJRWrestling)
— Logan Paul (@LoganPaul) June 20, 2023
3. CM Punk Returns to AEW TV, Comments on The Elite
It was a very busy week for CM Punk. First this past Friday, an interview dropped from Punk on ESPN. The interview was actually a lot less controversial than expected, but make some negative statements about ‘Hangman’ Adam Page. During the interview, Punk claimed that Page intentionally hit him during a match, and was the cause of this whole situation. Punk continued the following day on the debut episode of AEW Collision, opening the show with an in-ring promo.
During the promo, Punk claimed that the CEO of Warners Bros Discovery called him “One Bill Phil,” because “he was the one, true, genuine article in a business of counterfeit Bucks.” Punk then addressed the people who believed that Punk should apologize for what happened after AEW All Out, stating that he “is sorry that the only thing softer than you are the wrestlers you like.” Punk would then make his in-ring return later in the night, teaming with FTR to defeat Juice Robinson, Jay White and Samoa Joe. Punk then appeared on Dynamite as well, setting up another six-man tag team match for tomorrow on AEW Collision. Punk’s comments, of course, upset a lot of wrestling fans, who immediately posted a very stern and angry Tweet to show that they are not soft. (TJRWrestling)
oh man i can't believe cm punk said all that pic.twitter.com/7zLezKVVB1
— forever botchamania (@Maffewgregg) June 19, 2023
2. AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door to Take Place This Sunday
AEW X NJPW Forbidden Door is set to take place this Sunday night at 8 PM ET from Toronto, Canada. So far 11 matches have been announced, including Athena facing Billie Starkz in the first round of the Women’s Owen Hart Cup Tournament. Adam Cole will face Tom Lawlor. Toni Storm will defend the AEW Women’s Championship against Willow Nightingale. Orange Cassidy will defend the AEW International Championship in a Four-Way Match against Daniel Garcia, Zack Sabre Jr. and Katsuyori Shibata. CM Punk and Satoshi Kojima will face off in the first round of the Men’s Owen Hart Cup Tournament. Jon Moxley, Wheeler Yuta, Claudio Castagnoli, Konosuki Takeshita and Shota Umino will face ‘Hangman’ Adam Page, The Young Bucks, Eddie Kingston and Tomohiro Ishi in a ten-man tag team match. Chris Jericho, Sammy Guevara and Minoru Suzuki will face Sting, Darby Allin and a mystery opponent in a six-man tag match. MJF will defend the AEW World Championship against Hiroshi Tanahashi. Sanada will defend the IWGP World Title against “Jungle Boy” Jack Perry. Bryan Danielson will face Kazuchika Okada. Kenny Omega will defend the IWGP United States Championship against Will Osprey. Finally, The Elite will be competing in an untelevised game of hide-and-go-seek against CM Punk. (TJRWrestling)
1. The Usos to Face Roman Reigns and Solo Sikoa at Money in the Bank
One of the most dominant factions in the history of professional wrestling is officially no more. This past Friday on Smackdown, Jey Uso had to decide between siding with his brother Jimmy or his other brother Solo Sikoa and cousin Roman Reigns. At first, it looked like Jey was going to side with Sikoa and Reigns, as he told Jimmy he was out of the Bloodline. Jimmy then shockingly said, “and I am, too,” however, and super kicked Reigns. Jimmy then super-kicked Sikoa, before both Jimmy and Jey super kicked Reigns again. It was announced later on social media that Reigns and Sikoa would now be facing their former Bloodline teammates The Usos in a tag team match at Money in the Bank. This is a shocking end to The Bloodline, as usually families wait to the holidays to have these kind of blowups. (TJRWrestling)
— The Usos (@WWEUsos) June 17, 2023
That concludes another edition of The Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week. Although I often joke, I have recently started refereeing with GroundZero and training at the Institute of Professional Wrestling, and now respect more than ever what wrestlers do every week. If you like what I do, despite my jokes being almost as bad as avoiding your co-workers at all cost. Then follow me on Twitter @Fowlerwrestlin1 and listen to my Podcast The Smark and the Noob. Thank you to all of those who read this every week.