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By Mike Johnsonl on 2022-03-05 23:00:00

We are live at WWE's return to Madison Square Garden in NYC as part of their Road to Wrestlemania tour!

Pre-Show Notes:

*Sarah Schrieber is here working as the official host and ring announcer.

*There is a lighting rig above the ring.  There was one cameraman at ringside filming entrances.

*They are selling special NYC-themed Brock Lesnar and Steve Austin t-shirts.

*They are also selling signed photos of Riddle, Finn Balor and several other talents.

*Charlotte Flair took part in photo sessions for VIP Ticketholders.

WWE Raw Tag Team Champions Alpha Academy vs.  RK-Bro. 

Riddle was worked over for a long time before making the hot tag to Randy Orton.  Otis came back to pin Riddle with a Vader Bomb off the ropes after Riddle missed a moonsault.  Solid match with the crowd solidly behind the challengers.v Orton and Riddle dished out RKOs after the match to pop the crowd.

WWE United States Champion Finn Balor vs. Damian Priest in Balor's first title defense

Priest got a monster pop despite the turn because he's a hometown boy in NYC.  Lots of good back and forth wrestling here.  Priest worked over Balor and scored several near falls.  Priest peppered him with kicks to the legs and back.  Balor fought back and nailed a Pele Kick.  They were both almost counted out by the ref but made it to their feet.  Balor escaped Priest's powerbomb and nailed a Slingblade for a two count.  Priest nailed a big chokeslam but Balor kicked out at the last second.   He went for The Reckoning but Balor escaped, nailed a Slingblade and went to the top.  Priest escaped a Coup de Grace and nailed Balor low.  Priest was DQ'd.  He worked over Balor on the mat and nailed a Razor's Edge before several officials hit the ring.  Real good until the finish and then it was more of an angle.

WWE Smackdown Tag Team Champions The Usos vs. Big E & Kofi Kingston. 

The Garden ERUPTED for New Day.  Big reaction for Usos as they played to the crowd.  Usual great back and forth work here early with the crowd getting behind Kofi mocking the Usos.  Jey nailed Kofi from the outside while Jimmy distracted the referee.  Kofi was worked over for a long time.  He finally stunned Jey with a double stomp to the chest and BIg E tagged in.  He cleaned house and nailed a big splash.    The Usos double superkicked E for a two count.  They set up for a double Superfly splash but Kofi knocked one Uso off the ropes.  They nailed the Midnight Hour and almost scored the pin but it was broken up at the last second.  MSG lost it for this near fall it was so perfect.  They all brawled.  The Usos hit 3D on Kofi for the pin.  This was awesome.    Just a tremendous bell to bell tag team bout.

WWE Raw Women's Champion Becky Lynch vs. Bianca Belair vs. Rhea Ripley. 

The challengers worked over Lynch early, teaming up.  Becky took Bianca out and knocked her to the floor.  She and Rhea battled until Becky was pulled out by Bianca and slammed into the apron.  She and Rhea had some nice back and forth exchanges.  Becky returned but was nailed with a series of suplexes for a two count.  Rhea returned and worked over Bianca.  She went for a running boot but Becky interfered.  Rhea kicked her to the floor, smashed Bianca with the kick and drilled Becky with a kick on the floor.  She tossed Becky back in but Bianca tried to pick the bones, covering the champ.  Rhea broke it up and brawled with Belair. 

Belair worked over Rhea with punches in the corner.  She saw Becky coming and moved with Lynch crashing into Rhea.  She worked them both over with punches at the same time and hit a handspring into a backflip, covering them at the same time for a two count.    Becky snatched Bianca in the Disarmher.  Bianca fought her way to her feet and went for the KOD.  Lynch grabbed the ropes to escape.  Bianca lifted her for a slam but Rhea nailed a missile dropkick.  Rhea dumped Becky out and placed Bianca on the top rope, smashing her with forearms.

Rhea went for a superplex (fighting off Becky on the apron outside as Lynch tried to interfere) but Bianca turned it into a sunset flip powerbomb.  She nailed the KOD but Becly blasted her out of the ring and covered Rhea for a three count.  Really damn good.  Nice ovation for Bianca after.

WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns with Paul Heyman and The Usos vs. Seth Rollins.  

Long entrance from Roman.  HUGE reaction for him.  Reigns took the mic and demanded MSG acknowledge him.   Roman attacked Seth during ring introductions and beat him down on the floor.  He tossed Seth back in and they rang the bell.  Rolling fought back from underneath.  Roman went for a spear but was hooked in a Pedigree for a near fall.  Rollins set up for the stomp but was nailed and speared.  He locked Seth in the guillotine choke and choked him out.  Five minutes or so, total.  After Roman left, the fans sang Seth's music to hit as he recovered.

This was somewhat odd as Seth was advertised as challenger then they stopped advertising the match and then did it anyway.

We are now at intermission!

The Miz came out to do a live version of MizTV.   

Miz said his career started in New York with The Real World and he began knocking New Yorkers and the sports teams here.   He said New York thinks they are so tough buy he's the toughest person in the arena.    He deserves respect.    He brings out Kevin Owens as his guest.  Miz asked the crowd why they jeered him and cheered Owens.   Miz asked Owens about talking trash on Texas.  Owens said Miz was talking trash about NYC but he lives in Hollywood and said Hollywood sucks.   Miz says he's from Hollywood and so is his partner Logan Paul.  Owens said that so many people don't have a match at Wrestlemania including himself but Miz picked Paul for a partner.  Miz defended Paul and Owens buried him.  Owens said Logan Paul isn't even debuting at Wrestlemania and was a Mania last year.  He asked Miz if he remembered what happened.  Miz didn't know.  Owens said he would remind him and hit Miz with a stunner.    The crowd loved that.

Sami Zayn came out as Owens was exiting.  Owens gave him a hug in the aisle.  Zayn was reluctant about that.   He came to the ring and took the mic.   He should have arrived tonight as the Intercontinental Champion but he's not because of Johnny Knoxville and the fans because they allowed the conspiracy against him.  He challenged anyone in the back.  

Sami Zayn Open Challenge

Out came Drew McIntyre.  Nice pop for him.  Zayn said he didn't know Drew was here when he made the challenge but wasn't afraid of him.  He demanded the bell ring then went to the floor.   The fans mocked Zayn chanting, "Johnny Knoxville" at him.   Zayn antagonize a fan at ringside on the mic and threatened to punch him but Drew slid out behind him and nailed Sami.  Drew tossed him in, hit a lariat and a Claymore Kick.  Pinfall. 

Ronda Rousey and Naomi vs. WWE Smackdown Women's Champion Charlotte and Sonya Deville. 

Naomi and Sonya started.  Big reactions for all the entrances.    Flair tagged in and drilled Naomi with a big boot to knock her to the floor after Deville distracted her.  Naomi was worked over on the floor.    Naomi played babyface in peril as they kept preventing from making the tag.  She finally nailed a Disaster Kick off the ropes on Flair and made the tag.  Ronda threw around Deville and nailed a knee to the head.  Flair charged and hit a big boot on Rousey but was locked in an anklelock.  Naomi took out Deville with the Rear Window.  Flair fought her way out but was quickly taken down in an armbar and tapped.  Solid for the most part.  Naomi is SUPER on her game these days.  

Main event time. 

WWE Champion Brock Lesnar vs. Austin Theory. 

Yep, Theory headlines MSG.

Before the unveiling of Theory, Paul Heyman came out and said that this wasn't the house that Vince McMahon Sr or Bruno or Backlund or Hogan or The Rock or Vincent Kennedy McMahon built....but the house Roman built. 

 Austin Theory came out and said he was here for Brock for what he did at Elimination Chamber to Theory.  He took Brock's best shot and is still standing and is going to take Brock's WWE title.

Brock took the mic and introduced himself, saying he will take Austin Theory to Suplex City.  The crowd loved speaking along with Brock as he did his own version of the old Paul Heyman Brock introduction.  

The crowd chanted Suplex City.    Brock easily controlled Austin early.   Lots of suplexes.  F5.  The end.

Roman Reigns charged down and nailed Brock with a Superman Punch.  He went for another but was snatched and hit with a series of German suplexes.  The Usos hit the ring but was nailed with clotheslines and thrown around with suplexes.  He dispatched them and stalked Roman but Heyman went to hit him with a chair.  Brock caught him.  Heyman cowered in the corner, distracting Brock enough for Roman to lay him out with a chair to the back.  Roman worked him over with the chair.   Brock was bleeding.  The Usos brought the steel steps into the ring.  Roman slammed him on the stairs with a Rock Bottom.  The Bloodline closed the show celebrating over Brock's unconscious body.  Roman demanded Brock acknowledge him.

Notes: They had multiple cameras filming the main event segment....Michael Hayes, Shane Helms and Pat Buck produced the event....The crowd looked to be in the 8,000-9,000 range but was not sold out...No return date announced for Madison Square Garden and no plug for the forthcoming Smackdown taping in Brooklyn....There were LOTS of families with little kids at the show....AJ Styles and Sasha Banks were advertised but did not appear....the legendary MSG digital sign, which was removed as part of the outside renovations of the building, was relocated to a new position above the construction, so it has returned to 7th Avenue in NYC.


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