Originally published at WWE Crown Jewel: Brock Lesnar vs. Cain Velasquez
A reminder that Wai Ting and I will be doing a live show tonight at 11 pm eastern for all members of the POST Wrestling Café. We will be doing a quick review of the WWE Crown Jewel event and then opening the phone lines for the entire duration of the show.
The show had a brief in-studio portion from Stamford, Connecticut with Charly Caruso, Booker T., Scott Stanford, and David Otunga on the panel before throwing over to the kickoff in Riyadh.
Michael Cole and Corey Graves are calling the show
20-MAN BATTLE ROYAL
The winner will face AJ Styles later in the show for the United States title.
Andrade, Erick Rowan, R-Truth, Buddy Murphy, Titus O’Neil, Cedric Alexander, Drake Maverick, Shelton Benjamin, Eric Young, Mojo Rawley, Sunil Singh, Heath Slater, Brian Kendrick, Sin Cara, No Way Jose, Apollo Crews, Akira Tozawa, Luke Harper, Tony Nese, and Humberto Carrillo are the participants.
The first four listed received entrances, Andrade came out by himself. Samir Singh was in his brother’s corner.
Maverick was the first elimination as Rowan military pressed him to the floor and then he tossed Slater and Nese out.
Harper sent out Kendrick and Young. O’Neil eliminated Rawley with a clothesline, Andrade dumped Sin Cara to the floor, and Crews eliminated O’Neil.
Harper and Rowan had a face-off, but No Way Jose wanted them to dance. He was attacked and eliminated. They did the same deal with Tozawa and he was thrown out.
Murphy climbed the turnbuckle and was shoved off by Rowan followed by eliminations to R-Truth and Andrade. Alexander eliminated Sunil Singh and it was down to Rowan, Harper, Carrillo, and Alexander. The audience began chanting for Harper.
Alexander was tossed out.
The Singhs left with the 24/7 title and R-Truth was still on the floor, so he attacked Samir and rolled up Sunil to win the title back. The eliminated participants chased after Truth around the ring and backstage.
Harper went to throw Carrillo out, he slid underneath and Rowan knocked Harper out of the ring. Carrillo surprised Rowan from behind and eliminated him to win.
WINNER: Humberto Carrillo in 12:27
The audience did react well at various points of the battle royal. The match didn’t drag even if it was a typical battle royal and wasn’t anything special. It was set up around Rowan and Harper as the monsters and the underdog victory for Carrillo.
The main show began with elaborate fireworks and pyro display that nearly required George Barrios to revise their fourth-quarter projections.
BROCK LESNAR VS CAIN VELASQUEZ FOR THE WWE TITLE
Rey Mysterio came out followed by Cain Velasquez in MMA trunks and gloves with the colors of the Mexican flag.
Graves said Lesnar doesn’t react well to being hit in the face citing their fight in 2010.
It starts as a striking match and a totally different style than a WWE audience is used to. Velasquez dropped him with a head kick and then dove on top and was caught with a kimura and submitted.
WINNER: Brock Lesnar in 2:05 to retain the Universal title
Lesnar attacked Velasquez and Mysterio after the match. He attacked Velasquez with chair shots and hit an F-5 on top of the chair. Mysterio returned and blasted Lesnar with repeated chair shots and sent him to the floor as Paul Heyman held him back.
Michael Cole brought up the bad knee Velasquez entered the match with and Lesnar targeting it.
Cole promoted Riyadh Season.
TAG TEAM TURMOIL MATCH
Robert Roode & Dolph Ziggler vs. Gran Metalik & Lince Dorado
Kalisto was in Lucha House Party’s corner.
Dorado hit a handspring cutter on Roode followed by Metalik with a splash off his shoulders.
Ziggler took over after hitting a famouser on Dorado until Metalik received the tag. Dorado was shoved off the top into a superkick on the floor from Ziggler.
Metalik went for a handspring even though no one was standing in his way. He was hit with a superkick from Ziggler while upside down and a Glorious DDT to lose the match in 5:47.
Robert Roode & Dolph Ziggler vs. Curt Hawkins & Zack Ryder
Ryder missed a blockbuster off the turnbuckle as Hawkins held Roode on his shoulders.
Roode came back and lifted Ryder up into a Zig Zag and they won quickly in 0:47.
Robert Roode & Dolph Ziggler vs. Heavy Machinery
They had the advantage of Tucker that set up a hot tag to Otis, who the crowd reacted well to. Otis took off his shirt with Graves unsure if that’s legal in this country.
They hit the Compactor on Roode for the win in 5:56.
Heavy Machinery vs. Kofi Kingston & Big E.
New Day came out with a fireworks display.
Big E. and Tucker took turns posing and dancing. Otis was in and hit the caterpillar on Kingston for a two-count. Kingston hit a DDT and the Trouble in Paradise before tagging in Big E.
They set up for the Midnight Hour and hit on Tucker for the win in 3:23.
New Day vs. The B Team
Kingston hit Dallas with a trust fall on the floor as Big E. pinned Axel after the Big Ending in 1:29.
The Revival vs. New Day
Wilder caught Kingston with a slam off a leapfrog attempt. Kingston fought out of their corner and landed the S.O.S. but Dawson entered and stopped the tag.
They continued to double team Kingston until Big E. sent Wilder to the floor and Kingston stopped a vertical suplex with an inside cradle at 4:46.
At least this result made sense with New Day facing The Revival for the tag titles on Friday night. The hit Kingston with the Shatter Machine after the match.
New Day vs. Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows
They immediately went for the Magic Killer and Kingston stopped it. Big E. was pulled off the apron to prevent the tag.
The running boot of doom was hit by Anderson and the Magic Killer to win in 1:01.
Viking Raiders vs. Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows
Erik was dropkicked off the apron to the floor by Gallows.
Erik was sent into the post with his shoulder, they went for the Magic Killer and Ivar interfered. He was stopped and they clipped Erik’s knee, hit the Magic Killer and pinned Erik in 3:50.
WINNERS: Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows
No pairing had any length of time to resemble anything great so these were a cluster of short television matches back-to-back.
The surprise was the outcome with the heels pinning the undefeated Viking Raiders, which is fine to set up a title program but it appeared they had been paired with The Street Profits, who were not in the match.
CESARO VS MANSOOR
Mansoor came out to a big reaction and announced from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Cole said he has had a “whirlwind year” that has consisted of two televised matches. They aired highlights of the 51-man battle royal he won back in June.
Mansoor did a roll through into a standing moonsault and then dropkicked Cesaro to the floor. A suicide dive by Mansoor was met with an uppercut from the floor. Mansoor reversed a sleeper with a big reaction to it.
Cesaro was sent to the floor with a tilt-a-whirl head scissors and hit with a tope con giro. He hit a tornado DDT inside the ring for a two-count and you could see the audience was going to go crazy if he won. Mansoor hit a slingshot reverse neck breaker as Cesaro got his foot on the rope.
Cesaro hit a deadlift gut wrench, a pop-up uppercut and then into a crossface. Mansoor escaped and countered a gut wrench off the turnbuckle into a sunset bomb.
Mansoor landed a moonsault from the top and pinned Cesaro.
WINNER: Mansoor in 12:41
This was a great match and the atmosphere helped make it that much better as they went wild for everything Mansoor did and it was a superstar reaction when he won.
Greg Hamilton interviewed Mansoor in the ring, who said this was the most important match of his life. He said anything is possible and then spoke in Arabic.
Byron Saxton interviewed Seth Rollins and said that the rivalry with The Fiend ends tonight and he brings out the worst in him but also a part of him likes it.
BRAUN STROWMAN VS TYSON FURY
Fury entered to a huge production while wearing the traditional Saudi Arabian thobe.
Fury did an awkward roll into a kip-up before Strowman dropped him with a boot. Strowman missed, ran shoulder first into the post and landed on the floor.
Strowman circled the ring and was hit by Fury’s version of the Drive-By. Fury avoided the powerslam in the ring, hit a big boot and was clumsy hooking the leg.
Fury did the sit up spot as the match was really starting to drag by the six-minute mark. Strowman circled the ring with the shoulder blocks sending Fury down.
Strowman climbed on the apron and was knocked out with a right hand sending him to the floor. Strowman stumbled to his feet and couldn’t beat the count.
WINNER: Tyson Fury by countout in 8:01
Strowman came back and gave him a powerslam after the match.
Fury showed an aptitude and clearly enjoyed the process of doing this but it felt like an athlete having his first match, which is what it was.
It went longer than it needed and wasn’t that great, but they left the door open for Fury to do another match.
Backstage, the geeks were searching for R-Truth, who was hidden in a room. He was confronted by The Singhs, he ran into the closed door and was pinned by Samir Singh.
AJ STYLES VS HUMBERTO CARRILLO FOR THE UNITED STATES TITLE
Carrillo was hit with the Ushigoroshi and Styles dominating from the beginning. Carrillo eventually hit a handspring back elbow.
The crowd was barely reacting.
Carrillo kicked out from a brainbuster and then landed a rolling arm drag while bouncing off the ropes.
Carrillo landed an enzuigiri and Styles responded with the Pele kick. A portion of the crowd chanted “this is awesome” but it wasn’t loud.
Carrillo landed a twisting dive to the floor and landed on his feet.
Carrillo tweaked his knee when he landed allowing Styles to roll into the calf crusher, but he reached the rope. Carrillo hit another enzuigiri and went for the Aztec Press, landing on his feet and further injuring the knee.
Styles hit the Phenomenal Forearm and won.
WINNER: AJ Styles at 12:35 to retain the United States title
It was technical sound, but the audience did not care about this match and it felt dead for the time it lasted. They only reacted loudly to the ending. The flat atmosphere made it hard to get into.
Saxton interviewed Hulk Hogan and dubbed him “Beautiful Byron”. He is finally going to shut up Ric Flair and continued the fictional history that Flair has never beaten him. He has been training his team in the desert and when they are thirsty, he gives them a glass of sand. That’s not great for your hydration levels.
NATALYA VS LACEY EVANS
The two performed in full-body suits with t-shirts over them. Both received loud reactions and shook hands when the bell rang.
Evans kicked Natalya away when she went for the sharpshooter. Evans attacked her knee.
There was a chant of “this is awesome” as Natalya made her comeback, ran across Evans’ back and the sharpshooter was stopped again.
Evans landed the twisting moonsault from the top and Natalya kicked out. Natalya yanked her off the turnbuckle, hit a discus clothesline and applied the sharpshooter to submit Evans in the middle.
WINNER: Natalya in 7:21
The women received a strong reaction.
The two hugged in the middle after the match and were cheered by the crowd.
TEAM HOGAN (Roman Reigns, Shorty G, Ali, Rusev & Ricochet) VS TEAM FLAIR (Randy Orton, Drew McIntyre, Bobby Lashley, Shinsuke Nakamura & King Corbin)
Ric Flair and Hulk Hogan were out in the corners with Jimmy Hart accompanying Hogan.
Lana accompanied Bobby Lashley to the ring and not wearing her traditional attire.
Ricochet had a bodysuit to resemble a superhero.
Rusev was tagged in with Lashley, the referee separated them and Lashley tagged out.
Ali was shoved off the turnbuckle by Corbin and crashed into the barricade. They got the heat on Ali back inside.
Ricochet was tagged in, nailed by Corbin from the floor and hit with McIntyre’s inverted Alabama slam.
Next, Team Flair got the advantage of Ricochet and it was a long portion of the match. Ricochet made a hot tag to Reigns and they went crazy for him.
Reigns hit a Drive-By to Orton sending him into the post and another one to Lashley.
Reigns blocked an RKO attempt, hit the Superman Punch and the cover was broken up. Gable applied an ankle lock to Corbin and was broken by a Kinshasa. McIntyre laid out Ricochet with the Claymore.
Rusev came in and fought them off until he was left with Lashley and they went at it. They were both sent to the floor and Reigns landed a dive onto everyone. Cole added “there’s a reason Reigns was chosen as the captain”, yeah Seth Rollins was put into another match.
Reigns was in the ring with Orton and ran into an RKO for a big near fall. Orton set up for the punt that he can’t use and was stopped by Gable from the floor.
Ali entered and did the handstand to block the RKO. Ali, Ricochet, and Gable dove to the floor while Reigns hit the spear on Orton for the win.
WINNERS: Team Hogan in 19:51
The match picked up once Reigns entered the match and everything revolved around him, which worked. The final five minutes were very good and became a fun ten-man tag.
SETH ROLLINS VS THE FIEND BRAY WYATT IN A FALLS COUNT ANYWHERE MATCH FOR THE UNIVERSAL TITLE
The match featured the same red lighting they used at Hell in a Cell.
They fought on the floor and Rollins hit the stomp, which Wyatt stood up immediately from. Rollins was dropped onto the edge of the apron. Rollins moved out of the way and Wyatt ran through the barricade.
Rollins used the panel on the announcer’s desk to attack Wyatt.
Rollins brought out the sledgehammer and placed Wyatt’s head on a chair. Wyatt stopped him with the mandible claw, but Rollins attacked with the sledgehammer. I guess this was a less dangerous version of the weapon than Hell in a Cell.
Wyatt snapped Rollins’ neck and was cheered. Rollins came back with chair shots on the floor. Rollins climbed to the top and was shoved off and went through two tables stacked on top of each other.
Wyatt removed the padding on the floor and Rollins countered Sister Abigail. Rollins used the steps and then hit the stomp onto the exposed floor, but Wyatt kicked out.
They went into the crowd and Rollins took Sister Abigail on top of a staging area. Wyatt brought him to the stage at the entrance and Rollins hit the third stomp of the match, which Wyatt popped up from again.
Rollins hit superkicks and proceeded with five more stomps and then superkicked him off the stage as explosions went off. They used fire extinguishers, but more explosions went off and blinded Rollins as he was too close.
Wyatt emerged from behind the boxes and applied the mandible claw into Sister Abigail and won the match.
WINNER: The Fiend Bray Wyatt in 21:24 to win the Universal title