The State Farm Arena was lit up in Greens and Reds as Christmas Trees adorned the stage and the tron lit up in a beautiful glow with the EBWF logo covered in snow.
Mauro Ranallo: Jingle those sleigh bells and pass the nog... it's time for Christmas Eve of Destruction.
Nigel McGuinness: Tonight EBWF's finest put their bodies on the line for glory, just one month away from Last Survivor.
Mauro Ranallo: And we're making history tonight as we feature the first Hanukkah Havoc match and for the first time in Christmas Eve of Destruction history, in our main event, the EBWF Women's Championship will be defended when Arisa Hoshiki takes on Tam Nakano in a No Holds Barred match!
The sound of the bomb dropping brought the fans to attention as The Dudleys came to the ring first. The crowd cheered for the Lucha Bros as they appeared and immediately went to get the Dudleys on the outside. D-Von landed a facebuster and a splash off the ring apron taking out both members of Lucha Bros!
Mauro Ranallo: Well, that's one way to get things started! The ring is absolutely littered with weapons for this TLC match.
Bubba Ray laid in right hands to Rey Fenix in the ring and the referee finally rang the bell. D-Von set a table setup up on the outside and the crowd immediately began chanting "We want tables!".
Nigel McGuinness: This crowd is certainly in the spirit!
Bubba held up Rey Fenix allowing D-Von to hit a kick to the gut and DDT combo. Bubba took a leap to the outside taking out Penta Oscuro! Bubba remained against the ropes after Rey Fenix took out D-Von and then hit Bubba with a big kick. Fenix slid a chair inside, but it backfired as D-Von threw Penta into it face first. D-Von grabbed the chair and set it up between the top and middle rope. D-Von grabbed another chair and launched it in the face of Penta and followed with a dropkick to the face. Bubba and D-Von grabbed a ladder and Lucha Bros executed a double baseball slide into both. Bubba landed a chair shot to Rey Fenix when he attempted a suicide dive. Bubba then hit Penta in the knees with the steel chair as well. Penta brought the ladder in and pushed D-Von into the corner with it. Bubba cut off Penta and powerbombed him into the ladder. D-Von then climbed up on the top turnbuckle and came down across Penta with the ladder. Bubba set up the ladder and D-Von climbed up. Bubba cut off Penta. D-Von got to the top, prepared to drop the leg on Pena, but Rey Fenix was back in to pull him down. Bubba floated over and Rey Fenix caught his legs. He started climbing up the ladder using, but D-Von breaks it up kicking Rey Fenix in the back.
Mauro Ranallo: These men are attempting to get some offense going from the ladder, but each is stopping the other at every turn!
The ladder fell over. Bubba set it up again and Penta pulled him down. Penta hit a dragon screw on Bubba in the ladder sending it tipping over. Bubba was sandwiched inside the ladder and Rey Fenix stomped on the latter to add maximum insult. Rey Fenix launched D-Von over the ladder with Bubba still inside.
Nigel McGuinness: The Dudley Boys are in agony!
Penta followed up with a bulldog on D-Von over the ladder as well. Rey Fenix set up the ladder and got tossed off. Bubba put Penta up on the top turnbuckle. Rey Fenix dropkicked D-Von into the corner near the ladder. Bubba was tied up in the tree of woe by Penta. Rey Fenix tossed a chair at Penta. Penta held it over the face of Bubba and Rey Fenix hit the dropkick. Rey Fenix dragged D-Von next to Bubba, put a ladder and chairs over them and Penta hit a double foot stomp off the top. Lucha Bros setup the ladder. Rey Fenix grabbed a second ladder. Then together they put two of the ladders on each end to hold up a middle ladder.
Nigel McGuinness: This could be trouble.
Rey Fenix took a big kick from D-Von. Rey Fenix then lifted up Bubba. Penta tossed a chair at him. Bubba caught it and Penta hit a kneebuster to the face right into the steel chair. Lucha Bros brought a table into the mix. They placed the table over the top of the three ladders. Rey Fenix landed a springboard crossbody over D-Von who was on the shoulders of Penta on the outside. The crowd was chanting "Holy Shit".
Nigel McGuinness: These men are absolutely broken at ringside!
The men struggled to their feet. Bubba put Rey Fenix over another table. Penta caught D-Von with a big superkick. Penta hit the bulldog off the ring apron on D-Von through a table on the outside. Bubba grabbed a chair, and Rey Fenix scrambled to get one of his own. Bubba began to retreat up the ladder.
Nigel McGuinness: That's a terrible idea! What are you doing?!
Fenix followed after until both men were at the top, on the table over the three ladders. They swung with their chairs, and both connected.
Mauro Ranallo: They're beating the hell out of each other!
Bubba got the chair knocked out of his hand. Rey Fenix kicked Bubba. He doubled over and Fenix cracked the chair over his back and Bubba fell back to the mat below crashing through the table, and landing on the ladder! The "Holy Shit" chants continued as Fenix scurried down and went for the cover.
Penta grabbed D-Von as he tried to climb back in the ring!
Mauro Ranallo: It's over! What a performance from these two teams.
Nigel McGuinness: These men and women are going to have a long night if this is what's in store! What a match.
The tron lit up as the scene moved backstage.
We are Live at Christmas Eve of Destruction from Atlanta, Georgia as we looked on from the parking garage where a black SUV had just arrived at the State Farm Arena. The back door swung wide open and out stepped... ROMAN REIGNS!
Mauro Ranallo: ROMAN REIGNS HAS ARRIVED!
Roman Reigns walked inside the State Farm Arena and quickly he was approached by Alex Marvez.
Alex Marvez: Roman, big match tonight. It's going to be Sadistic Madness here tonight at Christmas Eve of Destruction. And, there's a lot riding on this one as well. The winner tonight will enter the Last Survivor match at number 30!
Roman Reigns: Atlanta, Georgia... Christmas Eve of Destruction... Sadistic Madness! My kind of night Alex. It's these kind of nights where my star shines the brightest. I'm the greatest of all time! You really didn't think they were going to leave me out of this one, right?
Roman asked with a smile.
Roman Reigns: Just sit back and enjoy! Tonight, is the night Alex... MY REIGN OF TERROR BEGINS!
Alex Marvez: Before you go... did you happen to hear the comments from Xavier Woods last week?
Roman looked over to Alex with a sigh.
Roman Reigns: Xavier Woods...
Roman grabbed the cameraman placing his full attention on himself.
Roman Reigns: I'm proud of you. I'm proud of what you've accomplished. I'm proud of the fact that you actually grew a set of balls and responded to me.
Roman Reigns paused with an ill intent look in his eyes.
Roman Reigns: You claimed that my return smelled trouble, and you couldn't be more right Xavier... because you know deep down inside, I'm the BIGGEST THREAT to your EBWF World Title reign! You wanna talk a big game, let me ask you something? Where is Xavier Woods tonight Alex!?
Alex Marvez: He's actually not booked.
Roman Reigns: Not booked? The EBWF World Champion not booked!? You mean to tell me these people here tonight in Atlanta, don't even get to see the World Champion defending his title? But, this is the guy who claims to have worked so hard to get to the top! Yet, he's not going to be here in action tonight. I guess he got the special treatment for being a PAPER CHAMPION! See, that's why this company needs a CHANGE! That's why I'm back Alex, to give this company EXACTLY what it needs... CHANGE! Xavier Woods talked about being all for giving people title opportunities, but he doesn't even put his title on the line tonight during a pay per view event? That's the kind of Champion everybody wants around here!? Give me a break. Xavier Woods is still the Champion because I've allowed it. Xavier Woods is still the Champion because he's afraid to defend his title against me. I have to earn it? I have to go out and win the Last Survivor match!? When you're the greatest of all time Xavier, that's not a problem. I don't need to enter the Last Survivor match at number 30... as a matter of fact, I could enter that match at number 1 and still outlast 29 other men to win it... that's why they call me the Head of the Table!
Roman was all business tonight.
Roman Reigns: But since they booked me tonight in Sadistic Madness, I can't think of a better way to begin... MY REIGN OF TERROR! Adam Cole, Johnny Gargano and Matt Riddle... that's the best you had to offer me tonight? I mean, did I not just destroy the BRO himself two weeks ago? C'mon... y'all got to be kidding me right?
Alex Marvez: You sound very confident Roman, don't you think you're possibly overlooking your opponents?
Roman Reigns: Overlooking my opponents? Naw... I ain't going to count them out Alex, on any given Sunday anything is possible... at least, that's how I've always remembered it from my football days! Adam Cole, Johnny Gargano, Matt Riddle and Myself... it's going to come down to who ever wants it more Alex, and I can assure you standing right here tonight... NO ONE... wants this more than the Head of the Table! NO ONE... wants this more than the greatest of all time! See, regardless of how these three prepare for this match tonight, it's Sadistic Madness which means anything goes. There are NO RULES! There are NO DISQUALIFICATIONS! This match fits right into my gameplan, so after this is all over tonight Alex. Don't say I didn't warn you about what's to come, because after I win the Sadistic Madness match tonight. I am going to enter the Last Survivor match at number 30, and I am going to show the entire world that I am indeed... the FUTURE of this company, and when I finally get Xavier Woods back in that ring... I am going to show the entire world, the last two times he's beaten me was a FLUKE! It was basically just another match to me, it didn't mean anything to me. But when you put the EBWF World Heavyweight Championship on the line... THEN... it means something! THEN... MY REIGN OF TERROR WILL OFFICIALLY BEGIN!
Roman Reigns walked off headed towards the locker rooms as we cut back to Mauro Ranallo and Nigel McGuinness.
Mauro Ranallo: Next up we have the Monster’s Ball match. For those unfamiliar with the stipulation, both Kane and PCO were brought to the arena 24 hours ago, and were locked into separate rooms without any food, water or light.
Nigel McGuinness: That’s right Mauro, and I doubt they have a bathroom in there either.
Mauro Ranallo: I dread to think.
Nigel McGuinness: I’ve heard, and it’s only rumours, but I’ve heard that Eric Bischoff was the one who lobbied to have them placed in adjacent rooms, so that they could hear each other through the walls.
A referee was shown backstage alongside another official, unlocking the two rooms. As soon as the doors were opened, Kane and PCO charged into each other, with Kane forcing PCO into the concrete wall.
Mauro Ranallo: The two competitors are wasting no time here.
PCO picked up a roll of electrical cable and threw it into Kane’s face. Kane responded with a vicious uppercut to PCO’s throat, sending him reeling into a stack of flight cases. Kane picked up one of the boxes and slammed it down onto PCO. They continued to brawl through the backstage area.
Nigel McGuinness: This match can only be won by pinfall or submission in the ring, so these guys are going to need to get out here to end this thing.
Mauro Ranallo: I’m not sure either man is too focused on winning, they just want to destroy each other.
Kane grabbed PCO by his head and drove him face first into a steel shutter. He picked him back up from the floor and dragged him towards the entranceway. The two stepped through the curtain onto the stage. They exchanged blows, standing precariously close to the edge of the stage. Eric Bischoff was shown setting up a table under the stage as PCO set Kane up for a vertical suplex from the stage to the table, but Kane managed to reverse it, suplexing PCO onto the metal stage.
Mauro Ranallo: That must have hurt both of them!
Nigel McGuinness: No doubt it would have if either of them were a normal person.
The fighting spilled down the ramp to ringside, where PCO collected a trash can from under the apron. The metal crumpled over Kane’s head before PCO dropped it to the floor and DDT’d Kane onto it. PCO started searching under the ring again, retrieving several glass light tubes, which he slid into the ring, followed by two steel chairs that were unceremoniously thrown over the ropes into the ring.
Nigel McGuinness: This is not going to be one for the faint-hearted.
As Kane entered the ring, PCO smashed the light tubes across his back. PCO took a bag from Eric Bischoff, who had appeared at ringside.
Mauro Ranallo: In these types of matches, those bags usually mean…
PCO poured hundreds of thumb tacks over the broken light tubes, but unfortunately turned around at the perfect time for his throat to meet Kanes hand. Kane lifted him into the air and chokeslammed him down into the thumbtacks and glass shards.
Crowd: HOLY SHIT!
PCO laid motionless for a split second, before sitting up with his arms outstretched.
Crowd: HE’S NOT HUMAN!
Nigel McGuinness: After this match, I’m not sure either competitor is human.
PCO returned to his feet and charged into Kane, driving him into the turnbuckles. He signalled to Eric Bischoff to set up the chairs in the center of the ring as he lifted Kane onto the top rope.
Mauro Ranallo: What could they possibly be setting up here?
PCO climbed up onto the middle rope, before jumping up to catch Kane in a hurricanrana onto the chairs. He looked down Kane, then pointed up to the top rope, looking to the crowd for approval. He began ascending the ropes to deliver the PCOsault. He failed to notice Kane sit up and get back to his feet. As PCO reached the top rope, Kane began to raise his arms over his head.
Nigel McGuinness: Surely he wouldn’t...
Kane brought his arms down as his pyros erupted from each corner, including the corner PCO was standing on, engulfing the French-Canadian Frankenstein in flames. PCO dropped to the mat, his clothing still smouldering as ring attendants rushed towards him with fire extinguishers. Eric Bischoff rushed into the ring to check on PCO, but Kane picked him up and hit the tombstone piledriver. Kane pulled Eric’s prone body over PCO before pinning both men for the 1, 2, 3!
Xavier had another night off. It was great to be the king and EBWF Champion. He arrived at the arena because he still had something to say. It was going to be a quick easy night for him, but Xavier was an active champion and always wanted to appear. He made his way down to the ring as the crowd went crazy. He rolled into the ring asking for a mic. They gave him one and the champion began speaking, no celebrating this time.
Xavier Woods: Edge, I'm not sure what's worse, Roman Reigns or yourself. Both of you feel entitled. Experience beyond measure and a strong work ethic only to be outdone by someone you both consider not worthy of this world championship. It's not my fault Edge that you lost your cool and screwed yourself out of the title. Maybe you shouldn't go pissing off people and it wouldn't come back to hurt you.
Xavier Woods: However, unlike Roman I think you deserve some credit Edge. You put the work in. You refuse to retire at your age and know how to stay in the title picture. I'm not saying you should get one tonight or next week. However, I do want you to know that you're on my radar.
The crowd cheered and chanted “rematch!”.
Xavier Woods: Oh yeah? That sounds like a great idea for the staff to figure out guys. I'm not the boss lady so I can't do anything. I will say this though the next time I battle with you Edge I want no interference. No excuses. I'm thinking a steel cage barbed wire match. We are going to leave it all on the line. I'm willing to give you one more chance. There is a catch though. If you're willing to accept then just know if you lose then you're not eligible for another rematch with me while I'm champion.
He tossed the microphone and walked backstage holding the title high.
The crowd in State Farm Arena cheered loudly when "All The Things She Said" hit and the Harley Quinn of EBWF Liv Morgan made her way to the ring.
Christy Hemme: The following contest is a Falls Count Anywhere match. Introducing first, representing Liv N Bliss, from Elmwood Park, New Jersey... Liv Morgan!
Liv looked more serious than ever as she entered the ring.
Mauro Ranallo: We're used to seeing Liv Morgan in a bright cheerful mood but ever since Fanniversary she's been anything but that.
Nigel McGuinness: She's loyal to her friends and her best friend has endured a lot of pain at the hands of Utami Hayashishita and Queen’s Court to the point where she's currently on the shelf and tonight Liv is looking for revenge on behalf of Alexa Bliss.
Liv was pacing in the ring when "Riot of Flowers" hit and the cheers quickly turned to loud boos as Utami Hayashishita walked out.
Christy Hemme: And her opponent, representing Queen’s Court, from Amami, Kagoshima, Japan... The Crimson Queen, Utami Hayashishita.
Utami looked at the crowd in disgust before she started walking to the ring. Utami didn't get far however as Liv Morgan had left the ring and ran up to attack her with punches and forearm strikes as the referee called for the bell to start the match.
Mauro Ranallo: Liv didn't want to wait for Utami to get in the ring.
Liv hit a Suplex on the floor and followed up by grabbing Utami and whipping her into the steel steps. Utami crawled over to the barricade and tried to escape through the crowd but Liv followed her and continued the attack. Liv knocked Utami down onto the concrete stairs and spotted a fan that had a sign that read "Use my sign Liv" Liv took the sign and hit Utami in the head with it which made a loud thud noise, Liv took apart the sign to reveal a stop sign hidden underneath.
Nigel McGuinness: How the hell did that guy get a stop sign?
Mauro Ranallo: No idea Nigel but it's helped Liv Morgan deal some damage to The Crimson Queen.
Utami crawled up the stairs and Liv followed her up knowing she was in control. Utami reached the top of the stairs and as Liv was almost there Utami threw a trash can and hit her. Liv was dazed from that shot and Utami got to her feet and walked away,Liv recovered and walked to where Utami went but The Crimson Queen came from out of nowhere and knocked Liv down and was finally in control of the match. Utami grabbed a table and hit Liv across the back. Liv tried to get to her feet but Utami hit her with a running knee lift and went for the pin.
Utami picked Liv up and went to throw her into a nearby vending machine but Liv revered it and sent Utami into the machine. The impact caused a can of coke to fall out,Liv grabbed the coke and took a sip before she poured the rest of it on Utami. Liv taunted Utami but was suddenly attacked from behind by Himeka Arita and Arisa Hoshiki.
Mauro Ranallo: Oh come on.
Nigel McGuinness: You had to know that these two would get involved.
The two women unleashed a series of stomps as Utami got to her feet.
Utami Hayashishita: Take her outside.
Himeka and Arisa did what they were told and dragged Liv to outside the building, knocking the camera man down in the process. After a few moments we cut to another camera outside the building where Queen’s Court dragged Liv to a nearby ambulance.
Utami Hayashishita: See Liv this is what you're going to leave in.
Himeka pulled Liv to her feet and held her in place Arisa took a step back and went for a Pulsar Kick…but Liv ducked and Arisa struck Himeka. Arisa looked at the fallen Himeka in shock and Liv took advantage with a Dropkick. Liv turned around and looked eye to eye with Utami who was frustrated at how her plan was falling apart. Liv charged at Utami and hit her with a series of punches before she threw her into the ambulance and took a few steps back,Liv ran and went to hit Utami with ObLIVion but Utami moved out of the way and instead Liv hit Arisa with the move by using her feet to push off the ambulance.
Mauro Ranallo: Good God.
Nigel McGuinness: Both women hit the concrete hard.
Liv held her back in pain as she got to her feet and went after Utami who was climbing up the Ambulance.
Mauro Ranallo: Utami is trying to get away from Liv Morgan.
Both women were on top of the ambulance. Utami got on her knees and looked fearful.
Utami Hayashishita: Please Liv, I'm sorry.
Liv shook her head and went to grab Utami but got poked in the eye. As Liv was on her knees tending to her eye Utami took a few steps back before she ran and punted Liv in the ribs. Liv clutched her midsection as Utami got closer to her.
Utami Hayashishita: Oh isn't this a familiar sight, a blonde haired moron who thinks she can defeat me and finds out the hard way that she can't and suffers the consequences. Why is it familiar, oh yes it's because this is the same situation that your pathetic friend was in a couple of months ago. Well Liv it's time to learn the hard way.
Utami pulled Liv to her feet and went for the BT Bomb and successfully hit it, tossing Liv onto the hood before she made the cover.
Utami got off and celebrated her victory as Himeka walked up and unleashed a series of punches on Liv.
Mauro Ranallo: Oh come on, the match is over.
Himeka powerbombed Liv into the Ambulance.
Utami Hayashishita: Take her back to the arena.
Himeka put Liv on her shoulder and the two Queen’s Court members walked back to the arena. The camera cuts to another area outside as a car pulls up. The show cuts back to the arena where Utami and Himeka have Liv down in the ring. Himeka left the ring and looked underneath before pulling out a razor wire board.
Nigel McGuinness: Oh god no.
Mauro Ranallo: We've seen the damage that thing can do. Someone needs to stop this.
Himeka put the board in the ring before re-entering. Utami told Himeka to "Finish her off" and Himeka pulled Liv to her feet and set her up for a Powerbomb when "Papercut" by Linkin Park hit and the crowd cheered loudly.
Mauro Ranallo: What?
Utami and Himeka froze in shock as Alexa Bliss ran down to the ring and attacked both of them. Alexa hit Himeka with a Dropkick and sent her out of the ring. Utami tried a punch but Alexa ducked and kicked her in the gut before hitting a DDT.
Nigel McGuinness: Alexa Bliss is back.
Alexa kicked the board out of the ring before she turned and looked at Liv who was on the mat. Liv looked up and saw Alexa and looked shocked before she smiled and quickly got up to hug Alexa as the crowd cheered.
Mauro Ranallo: Well Nigel I think this might be a Merry Blissmas.
Nigel McGuinness: Indeed.
"Papercut" hit again and the two friends celebrated as a promo for Last Survivor played.
After a video package played that chronicled the story of Edge's disappearance at Fanniversary, the camera switched over to Nigel McGuiness and Mauro Ranallo at the announce table.
Mauro Ranallo: Well EBWF fans, we are supposed to be moving on to the next match which is billed as Rated RKO vs. Bray Wyatt and a partner of his choosing, but we're not entirely sure what to expect here. We have not seen or heard from Edge since Fanniversary, and we don't know if he has arrived to the arena. We know Randy is here, and we know Bray Wyatt is here.
Nigel McGuiness: We could see anything tonight!
The tron flickered and came back up on the backstage area, where Randy was making his way to his locker room when he was stopped by Renee Young.
Renee Young: Hi Randy, any news about the whereabouts of Edge, and if he will be able to participate in the flaming tables match?
Randy shook his head,
Randy Orton: I haven't heard anything. But I know for a fact that Bray Wyatt has. So, if I have to go down to that ring, beat his mystery partner down, and set him on fire until he tells me where Edge is, then I'll happily do that. Now, if you'll excuse me, I still have to--
Randy was opening the door to his locker room when he turned his head and noticed something that made him fall silent. He flexed his jaw as he pushed the door open further. The camera peered in, and in the center of the room, securely tied to a steel folding chair, was Edge. His feet and hands were bound in duct tape, and his face was covered in blood. Edge was clearly not conscious. Randy sprinted toward him and growled at Renee.
Randy Orton: Go get help!
Randy began the work of extricating Edge's hands from their duct tape binds as a member of the security staff rushed in and started working on the duct tape binding his feet together. More staff members poured in to help as trainers quicky rushed in to tend to Edge's wounds. Randy backed up from the scene as professionals had the situation covered. He looked at his hand which had Edge's blood on it, and he shook his head. He grabbed one of the technicians by the collar and pulled him towards him.
Randy Orton: Is Wyatt ringside yet?
Technician: No one has gone down to the ring yet!
He sighed and released the technician and turned towards the entranceway to see Paul Heyman, who had his hand covering his mouth as he looked on in shock. Randy's eyes narrowed and he walked aggressively towards the advocate. He leaned down close and spoke in a hiss.
Randy Orton: I'm going to find him, and I'm going to end him. And then you're next.
Randy brushed past Paul who continued to stare at Edge as medical professionals tended to him. The camera kicked back to the ringside area with Mauro and Nigel.
Mauro Ranallo: Obviously this is a developing situation and we're still trying to learn all of the facts. We will update the EBWF fans when we have more information to provide about Edge's condition. In the meantime, we're going to move on to the next match.
Mauro Ranallo: Still to come, we’ve got Hook teaming up with a mystery partner to take on MJF and Powerhouse Hobbs in the first ever Hanukkah Havoc match, and in our main event Tam Nakano defends the Women’s Championship against Arisa Hoshiki! Up next though, we’ve for a sadistic madness fatal four way match, and the winner will enter the men’s Last Survivor match next month at the coveted number 30 spot!
Johnny Gargano made his way to the ring first, followed by Matt Riddle, Adam Cole and finally Roman Reigns. Once all four men were in the ring, the referee called for the bell. Reigns charged towards Riddle and began pummeling him with a series of punches, while on the other side of the ring, Cole and Gargano locked up. As Reigns threw Riddle out of the ring, Gargano lifted Cole up for a suplex… but Cole landed on his feet behind Gargano, then hit him with a Backstabber! As Cole got to his feet, he locked eyes with Roman Reigns, who was staring him down. Cole told Roman to bring it, and the Tribal Chief ran at Adam Cole, going for a clothesline… but Cole ducked out of the way, then hit Reigns with a superkick!
Nigel McGuinness: Adam Cole is the only man standing right now, but before he can pin or submit any of his opponents, he has to make them bleed!
Cole posed for the crowd, yelling “Adam Cole bay-bay!” then exited the ring and grabbed a steel chair. As Cole tried to return to the ring with the chair, however, Riddle attacked him and hit a DDT onto the chair! Riddle then picked up the chair and entered the ring, where he hit Johnny Gargano with the chair. Riddle then went to hit Reigns with the chair, but Reigns blocked it and snatched the chair off Riddle! Reigns threw the chair away, then grabbed Riddle and lifted him over his shoulders, hitting a Samoan drop. Reigns then went to the corner, where he began removing the top turnbuckle pad!
Mauro Ranallo: That’s one way to bust someone open… an exposed turnbuckle!
After removing the turnbuckle pad, Reigns turned around… but Johnny Gargano was back on his feet and he ran at Reigns, hitting him with a dropkick! Reigns fell backwards into the corner, and he cried out in pain as his back hit the exposed turnbuckle. As Reigns staggered out of the corner, Gargano dragged him down to the mat, putting him in the Garga-No-Escape!
Mauro Ranallo: Gargano has that submission locked in, but even if Reigns taps out, he won’t be able to win just yet… Reigns isn’t bleeding!
Nigel McGuinness: That may be the case, Mauro, but if he can hurt Reigns enough to incapacitate him, that means he can focus on Riddle and Adam Cole!
The camera cut to Adam Cole at ringside, who had just pulled a box out from underneath the ring. Cole smiled as he opened up the box.
Mauro Ranallo: What’s in the box? What’s in the box?
Cole pulled a boot out of the box, but this wasn’t just any regular wrestling boot… the base of the boot was covered in thumb tacks! Cole then removed his right boot, put on the thumb tack boot and slid into the ring. Matt Riddle was back on his feet, and Cole immediately hit him with a superkick!
Nigel McGuinness: Riddle just took a face full of thumb tacks! We have first blood, Mauro!
As Riddle fell to the mat, the camera zoomed in on him. Sure enough, blood was trickling down his face. Cole covered him and the referee counted - 1… 2… Johnny Gargano interrupted the count! He pulled Cole to his feet and went to whip him against the ropes, but Cole reversed it, sending Gargano against the ropes… before superkicking Gargano with the thumb tack boot! Gargano was busted open too, and Cole hooked the leg. The referee counted - 1… 2… Gargano kicked out! As Cole got to his feet, “Judas” by Fozzy hit, and the crowd cheered as Chris Jericho made his way to the ring.
Mauro Ranallo: Adam Cole warned Chris Jericho to stay away from this match, but I guess Jericho either didn’t hear the warning or he just doesn’t care!
Nigel McGuinness: Knowing Jericho, Mauro, he’s probably out here because Cole told him to stay away… he’s making it clear that Adam Cole can’t tell him what to do!
Cole glared at Jericho, and clenched his fists, readying himself for a fight, but Jericho simply stood on the ramp, watching. At this point, Roman Reigns got to his feet, and Cole quickly turned his attention to the Tribal Chief. Cole went to his Reigns with another superkick… but Reigns blocked it, then lifted Cole up and hit him with a powerslam. As he stood over Cole, Reigns grabbed his leg and removed the thumb tack boot from Cole’s right foot, which he then threw out of the ring. Reigns then stomped on Cole’s foot!
Mauro Ranallo: Ouch! If Cole doesn’t have any broken toes, he’s sure to at least have a few bruises!
Reigns pulled Cole to his feet and dragged him towards the corner, then slammed his head against the exposed turnbuckle! Reigns repeated this several more times, before throwing him out of the ring. Reigns then turned his attention to Matt Riddle, who was on his feet. Reigns charged towards Riddle and hit him with a Spear! He hooked both legs and the referee counted - 1… 2… Gargano interrupted the count! Gargano hit Reigns with a series of punches, before hitting a DDT. Gargano then exited the ring and lifted up the ring apron, looking for a weapon. While Gargano was looking for a weapon, the camera cut to Adam Cole on the other side of the ring. There was a light trickle of blood coming down from Cole’s forehead where it had connected with the exposed turnbuckle. As Cole got to his feet, he went to grab the thumb tack boot Reigns had tossed aside… but Chris Jericho got to it first! Jericho picked it up, placed it over his right hand, and clobbered Cole in the face with it!
Nigel McGuinness: I can’t believe Jericho did that!
Mauro Ranallo: He’s giving Adam Cole a taste of his own medicine, Nigel!
Nigel McGuinness: That would be fine if Chris Jericho was a competitor in this match, Mauro, but he’s not. He has no business getting involved!
The camera zoomed in on Cole’s face, which was now covered in blood. Jericho leaned over him, yelled “Merry Christmas bitch!” then headed to the back, taking the thumb tack boot with him. The camera then cut back to Johnny Gargano, who had wrapped a chain around his fist. As Gargano re-entered the ring, Riddle went to hit him with a running knee, but Gargano side-stepped it, then spun around and hit Riddle in the back of the head with the chain! Riddle fell to the mat, and Gargano switched his attention to Roman Reigns. Gargano ran at Reigns and went to hit him with the chain, but Reigns blocked it, then hit Gargano with an uppercut! Gargano was momentarily dazed, and Reigns took the chain off him, then wrapped the chain around Gargano’s neck, choking him!
Mauro Ranallo: Mamma Mia! Is Reigns going to try and choke Gargano out here?
As Gargano started to fade, Reigns removed the chain from around his neck and covered him for the pin. The referee counted - 1… 2… Riddle broke up the count! Riddle then set Reigns up for a gutwrench suplex… but Reigns blocked it, then hit Riddle with a sitout powerbomb! Reigns hooked both legs and the referee counted - 1… 2… Riddle kicked out! As both men got to their feet, Reigns grabbed the chain Gargano had brought into the ring and wrapped it around his fist, before leaping into the air and hitting Riddle with the Superman Punch!
Nigel McGuinness: Superman Punch with the chain! That might have knocked Riddle out cold!
As Riddle lay motionless on the mat, Reigns covered him and yelled at the referee to make the count. The referee counted - 1… 2… 3!
Mauro Ranallo: Roman Reigns gets the victory, and will now enter the Last Survivor match at number 30. That could be a game-changing advantage!
After the match, the camera cut to the backstage area as Alexa Bliss and Liv Morgan were walking down the hall.
Liv Morgan: Well that was a wonderful surprise.
Alexa Bliss: Merry Blissmas.
The two laughed but stopped when a figure stopped right next to them. It was the EBWF Women's Champion Tam Nakano who was dressed in her ring gear and had the title over her shoulder. Alexa and Tam looked at each other as the crowd in the arena cheered. Alexa's eyes soon moved to the championship on Tam's shoulder for a brief moment before she looked back at Tam who smirked. Tam walked away leaving Liv N Bliss alone.
After a video package recapping the feud between Hook and MJF, the camera cut to the ringside area, which had been set up for the Hanukkah Havoc match. A variety of Hanukkah themed items were around the ring, including the menorah (complete with candles and a glass menorah box), a basket full of dreidels, and a table with an array of Hanukkah food (including latkes, sufganiyot donuts and chocolate gelt coins). “Better Than You” hit and the crowd booed as MJF and Powerhouse Hobbs made their way to the ring. MJF was wearing a blue Hanukkah themed jacket, which he removed upon entering the ring. When MJF and Hobbs were in the ring, “The Chairman’s Intent” by Action Bronson hit and the crowd cheered as Hook walked out onto the stage, accompanied by his father Taz. Hook stood at the top of the ramp, and the camera cut to MJF, who was laughing at him. MJF had a microphone, and once Hook’s music was cut, MJF began to speak.
MJF: Awww, what’s the matter Tyler? Could you not find a partner because everybody hates you? Did you have to beg daddy to team up with you? I’m happy to beat up the old man, just as long as you both promise not to sue me when I cause life changing, permanent damage!
The camera cut back to Hook and Taz, who were both laughing. Taz had a microphone, which he brought up to his mouth as he responded to MJF.
Taz: You just don’t listen, do you Max? We’ve been dropping hints for weeks, but you’re so wrapped up in your own hype, you haven’t noticed. I’m not Hook’s partner - I’m happily retired, even though I could still kick your ass. But no, Hook’s partner is someone you know very well… and like we told you before, this is WAR!
The tron cut to footage of the backstage area, where a camera was waiting outside Hook’s locker room. The locker room door opened, and out stepped…
Mauro Ranallo: I don’t believe it, Nigel! It’s WARDLOW!
“Symphony of War” hit, and the crowd began chanting Wardlow’s name as he walked through the backstage area towards the ring. The camera cut back to MJF in the ring, who was wide-eyed with fear. As Wardlow joined Hook at the top of the ramp, MJF cowered behind Hobbs, then yelled at Hobbs to “take care of Wardlow”. Hobbs exited the ring and walked up the ramp, then began exchanging punches with Wardlow! As the two big men battled on the ramp, MJF tried to escape through the crowd, but Hook chased after him and caught him as he climbed over the ringside barrier! Hook slammed MJF’s head off the top of the barrier, then lifted him back over the barrier and hit him with a series of punches and kicks at ringside. The referee called for the bell, starting the match.
Nigel McGuinness: This match is officially underway, and it’s already carnage! For the benefit of our viewers at home, please be advised that this match is being fought under street fight rules, so while anything goes, in order to win this match, you have to get your opponent in the ring and pin or submit them.
Back on the ramp, Wardlow overpowered Hobbs and set him up for a powerbomb… but Hobbs countered with a back body drop! As Wardlow sat up, Hobbs kicked him in the face, and Wardlow’s head snapped back, making a loud thud as it hit the steel ramp. The camera cut back to MJF and Hook, and after hitting Hook with a knee to the midsection, MJF went to slam Hook’s head against the ring post… but Hook blocked it and caught MJF with an elbow smash. MJF staggered backwards, and Hook grabbed him, suplexing MJF through the table of Hanukkah food!
Mauro Ranallo: MJF is getting a literal taste of what it means to be in the first ever Hanukkah Havoc match!
Nigel McGuinness: How long have you been waiting to use that line, Mauro?
Mauro Ranallo: Since I saw them setting up the table of food…
Hook threw MJF into the ring, then went to put him in Redrum… but before he could lock it in, he was attacked by Powerhouse Hobbs! Hobbs pummeled Hook with a series of punches, then threw him into the corner before hitting a corner clothesline. As Hook stumbled out of the corner, Hobbs lifted him up over his shoulder and hit a running powerslam! He hooked the leg and the referee counted - 1… 2… Hook kicked out! Hobbs got to his feet and stomped on Hook several times, keeping him grounded while MJF exited the ring, grabbing the basket of dreidels. He brought the basket into the ring, then poured the dreidels onto the mat and yelled at Hobbs to hit Hook with a spinebuster! Hobbs lifted Hook up, and hit a spinebuster onto the dreidels!
Nigel McGuinness: Oh my god! That must have stung!
Mauro Ranallo: I’m not sure a move like that is in the spirit of Hanukkah, Nigel… but at least the dreidels aren’t made of clay!
Hobbs stepped back, allowing MJF to pin Hook. MJF hooked the leg and the referee counted - 1… 2… Wardlow broke up the count! Wardlow tried to set MJF up for a powerbomb, before Hobbs intervened, hitting Wardlow with a clothesline. MJF quickly rolled out of the ring and yelled at Hobbs, telling him to “take care” of Wardlow. Hobbs hit Wardlow with a series of punches, and went to whip him against the ropes… but Wardlow reversed the Irish whip, sending Hobbs against the ropes before hitting him with a big boot. As Hobbs got back to his feet, Wardlow hit him with a headbutt, then lifted him up, hitting a powerbomb! The crowd cheered and began chanting “one more time!”
Mauro Ranallo: I think it’s time for a Powerbomb Symphony, Nigel!
Wardlow grabbed Hobbs and set him up for a second powerbomb, but before he could hit it, MJF grabbed the menorah and climbed into the ring, hitting Wardlow in the back of the head with it! Wardlow looked dazed, and he released Hobbs, then stumbled around the ring. As Wardlow turned to face MJF, MJF went to hit him a second time with the menorah… but this time Wardlow blocked it and slapped the menorah away! MJF suddenly looked fearful, and he quickly exited the ring before retreating up the ramp. Wardlow followed MJF out of the ring, and chased MJF up the ramp!
Nigel McGuinness: Well I sure as hell wouldn’t want to be MJF if Wardlow catches up to him… but this match is still ongoing, so right now our focus is on Hook and Hobbs!
Hook and Hobbs both got to their feet, and as they did so they locked eyes with one another. Hobbs snarled at Hook, then charged towards him and went for a clothesline… but Hook ducked out of the way, then grabbed Hobbs from behind, putting him in Redrum!
Mauro Ranallo: Redrum locked in, and don’t forget there are no rope breaks in this match… so Hobbs has to either fight out of it, tap out, or risk being choked out!
Hobbs tried to fight out of it, but he was unable to do so and he passed out! The referee called for the bell, then raised Hook’s arm in victory.
Nigel McGuinness: It’s over! A huge victory for Hook and Wardlow!
Mauro Ranallo: I think they might have just ruined MJF’s Hanukkah!
Hook celebrated, then made his way to the back as a video package for the main event began to play.
There was an electric buzz in the air as Christy Hemme stepped into the ring with mic in hand. After a night full of mayhem and destruction, they were ready for the main event. With this being the only title on the line, the anticipation was at a fever pitch.
Christy Hemme: Ladies and gentlemen, the following contest is your main event of the evening.
The crowd roared in approval.
Christy Hemme: It is a No Holds Barred match scheduled for one fall-
The fans shouted “ONE FALL!”
Christy Hemme: And it is for the EBWF Women's Championship!
Another huge pop erupted from the State Farm Arena crowd who were anxious to see the match unfold. When the opening guitar strains of “Shadowmaker” by LoveBites hit, the cheers turned to boos. Gold tinted clips of Arisa hitting big moves on opponents and glaring into the camera played on the tron as the song continued to play. Mid-way through the opening verse, Arisa Hoshiki strode through the curtain onto the entrance stage. Clad in her black entrance coat with gold and silver trim, Arisa glared down at the ring as of the champion were already there.
As she purposefully made her way down the ramp, Arisa could be seen holding the back of her head. If the apparent pain hindered her determination to win the championship, it didn't show on her face. As she reached the bottom of the ramp, she lowered her hand and bowed her head while collecting her thoughts.
Christy Hemme: Introducing first, the challenger, representing Queen's Court. From Chiba, Japan, she is the Dark Star… Arisa Hoshiki!
Nigel McGuiness: This main event might very well be the most intense of the night. Arisa Hoshiki emerged from retirement in October and has made waves ever since. There have been lingering doubts about her ring rust and physical condition each time she's been in action. She's answered those doubts with statement wins over Aalyah Gutierrez and Britt Baker. Tonight, just two months after her in-ring return she has a chance to make the ultimate statement by becoming EBWF Women's Champion.
Mauro Ranallo: She'll have to overcome the woman who knows her better than anyone on EBWF to do it too. We know that doesn't give her pause at all, as she is a fighter first and foremost. Arisa Hoshiki has been very good at not just picking fights, but winning them. We're about to find out if she can make good on her promise to end the Twilight Dream of Tam Nakano.
Arisa made her way up the ring steps and climbed the turnbuckles to stare out at the crowd. As if on command the camera switched to a panorama shot of the fans. We could see that while Tam had a great deal of support, there were some Dark Star t-shirts in the crowd as well. Our shot returned to Arisa as she climbed down into the ring. While she removed her coat, “Twilight Dream” by Tam Nakano herself began playing to a huge ovation.
White smoke filled the stage while the cosmically themed purple video played on the tron. The shot craned up to show a six pointed star drawn out with glowing purple light. Through the smoke stepped the champion, decked in her ethereal white robes. She stood at the center of the star with her eyes cast to the floor for a long few moments. When she finally looked up Tam's face lit up the arena with an infectiously bright smile. She threw her arms out to either side as she sauntered to the ring. Just barely visible under her robe, the EBWF Women's Championship she'd fought so hard to reclaim glistened in the pulsing white and purple ramp lights.
Christy Hemme: And her opponent, from Tokyo, Japan: she is the EBWF Women's Champion! “Twilight Dream” Tam Nakano!
Another ovation roared through the arena as Tam arrived at ringside.
Mauro Ranallo: Tam Nakano enters this match riding a tidal wave of momentum. She's gone undefeated since her return to EBWF in July, and now enters Christmas Eve of Destruction as a two time EBWF Women's Champion. No one would debate that the champion has improved herself in every facet - she proved herself by ending the reign of Dr. Britt Baker, DMD one month ago.
Nigel McGuiness: She's certainly gone from strength to strength in her EBWF return, but tonight is an unprecedented challenge for Tam Nakano. Her opponent has looked very good and very determined to claim the EBWF Women's Championship for herself. We've seen in the past weeks how torn Tam is about this defense. After all the work she put in to reclaim the title, she's going to fight like hell to keep it. I'm sure she remembers that in her first reign, she wasn't able to do so and lost it in her first defense. Meanwhile she still considers Arisa Hoshiki her best friend, and you have to wonder if she'll be able to keep her personal feelings in check tonight. If she doesn't, we may be about to see the dawning of the Dark Star champion.
Tam by this point had also ascended to the top turnbuckle. She completed her pre match ritual, waving across the horizon and tracing out a star before hopping down into the ring. Once there she gingerly removed her entrance robe, revealing the championship around her waist. This she removed only slowly, taking a moment to hold it up and gather her thoughts. She leaned forward and kissed the center plate, then handed the belt to the ref. The ref showed the belt to Arisa, who nodded gravely and then glared daggers over at Tam. Tam smiled confidently as the ref showed her the belt, ready to start the fight in earnest. The ref then held the EBWF Women's Championship aloft and the match was underway.
The two combatants locked eyes with each other from across the ring. There was an intensity to their respective stares which added to the frenetic atmosphere which had built up in the arena. Chants of “Let’s Go Tam!” rang out loudly as the bell rang and the main event was officially underway! Neither woman budged from her corner for the first few moments. When the camera zoomed in on the challenger, Arisa was in a fighting stance with muscles tensed as she sized up the EBWF Women’s Champion. Then the shot switched to Tam, face as full of emotion as Arisa’s was focused. It was clear that Tam was simultaneously concerned and determined as she watched her former best friend. Finally Tam walked out to the center of the ring and extended her arm, offering a handshake. This was enough to draw out the Dark Star, whose eyes never wavered from an unflinching glare toward the champion. When she arrived Tam nodded to her proffered hand, which Arisa finally noticed.
When Tam nodded toward it again, Arisa swung her hand to slap Tam - but Tam grabbed her hand out of the air! They froze for a moment and Tam smiled playfully at Arisa. This was repaid quickly as Arisa pulled Tam in and slammed a forearm to her face! Tam stood her ground as Arisa hit her with another forearm, then another, before shoving Arisa back with a shout! As Arisa tried to close the distance, Tam landed a stiff kick to Arisa’s right leg! Caught off guard, Arisa stumbled and received another kick to the same spot. Tam was quickly getting fired up and landed a combo of kicks to Arisa’s legs and chest that staggered the Dark Star further. But as Tam tried to run the ropes, Arisa seized Tam’s wrist and pulled her back in for a sudden knee to the face! The champion fell to one knee and it was Arisa’s turn to pepper Tam with a vicious combo of kicks. Just as Tam started to get herself up off the mat Arisa ran to the ropes, leapt onto them and spun around to nail Tam with a springboard knee to the face! Tam fell to the mat and Arisa glared down at her as if to ask if that was all Tam had.
She then grabbed Tam by the hair, pulled her up off the mat and hammered away with more forearms to the chest. With Tam wobbly on her feet, Arisa hooked her arm and hit her with a brainbuster! Tam bounced up off the mat into a sitting position only to be hit by a penalty kick by Arisa! More chants of LET’S GO TAM! rang out and Arisa took a moment to taunt the fans, motioning to the prone champion. Seeing Tam struggle back to her feet, Arisa ran the ropes and flew at Tam with a bicycle knee - no one home as Tam bridged underneath it. In the split second that Arisa took to regain her footing, Tam ran to the opposite ropes and then hit a bicycle knee of her own on the rebound! She went for the cover.
Arisa kicked out!
Mauro Ranallo: A frantic start to our main event here! Tam is returning fire with the same aggression Arisa unloaded on her.
Nigel McGuiness: Both of these women are incredible strikers too. The question is who will slip up first, and if their opponent can make them pay.
As Arisa kicked out, Tam grabbed her right foot and cinched in a leg lock! Arisa frantically hit Tam with kicks from her free leg, only for Tam to grab it too as she tried to transition into an Indian death lock! In further desperation Arisa dug her elbows into the mat and clawed her way to the bottom rope. Tam let go of the hold and lay in wait as Arisa climbed the ropes to her feet. As soon as Arisa was up Tam kicked her in the gut and tried for a cutter! Arisa shoved her out of position, then hit a vicious swinging neckbreaker in return! She covered Tam for the pin.
Tam bridged out of the pin!
The fans’ cheers turned to horrified sounds as Arisa countered the bridge into an Anaconda Vice! As Tam screamed in pain Arisa wrenched the hold in, a sadistic expression on her face. While the ref fell to all fours to check on Tam, the champion clenched her free hand into a fist and shook her head repeatedly. Arisa responded by wrenching it in more and shouting at Tam in Japanese. Tam’s legs tensed, toes digging into the mat as she tried to gain some purchase in the hold. Finally in an explosion of energy she bridged up - only for Arisa to use her weight to push Tam back to the mat. Those “LET’S GO TAM!” chants got louder and louder as Arisa’s face contorted into further frustration. She leaned into the hold a little, only for Tam to roll her over into a pin.
Arisa kicked out and released the hold!
The Dark Star slapped the mat in frustration, shouting in her native language. Tam rolled to the ropes and pulled herself up on them while Arisa went on the attack, nailing her with kicks to the legs and torso. With Tam back on her feet Arisa roared and scooped Tam up for a Diamond Buster. Tam slipped out of Arisa’s grasp and landed behind her, and Arisa’s leg arced through the air with a sudden Pulsar Kick! Tam bridged under the kick by mere centimeters and ended up behind Arisa. Taking advantage of this she wrapped her arms around Arisa’s waist and slammed Arisa overhead with a Tenku Otoshi! Arisa hit the mat hard and rolled out of the ring to get some space as Tam hopped to her feet with an emphatic roar.
As the shot switched to ringside, we saw Arisa holding the back of her neck as she struggled to regain her wits. She shook her head as if to clear the cobwebs, then pulled herself up on the ringside barrier. This exact moment was accompanied by a massive pop as Tam flew from the top rope and leveled Arisa with a diving crossbody to the outside! Both women violently crashed to the floor, Arisa definitely the worse for wear as she remained on her back while holding her head. Meanwhile Tam was also on her back, shocked from the impact of her own dramatic move. Chants of “HOLY SH*T!” rang out while the two women tried to recover.
Nigel McGuinness: Tam Nakano taking flight in this supremely emotionally charged contest. You can tell how badly she wants to win this match.
Mauro Ranallo: The Twilight Dream has taken out all the stops in her quest to overcome her best friend’s challenge tonight. Will she be able to keep this pace going, though? Can she take advantage of this momentum and put away the Dark Star?
Tam was first to her feet, using the ringside barrier much as Arisa had moments before. She held her arm out as if sizing up her opponent, shouting at Arisa to get up. Arisa pulled herself to her feet just barely in time to eat a roundhouse from Tam. The impact staggered Arisa, but she suddenly screamed and super kicked Tam in the face. Tam screamed back and hit another roundhouse that pushed Arisa back toward the ring steps. As Arisa recovered from the blow, Tam took a few steps back and charged Arisa to go for a dropkick into the barrier. But Arisa suddenly realized where she was and kicked the top half of the ring steps into the incoming Tam’s path. The champion slammed into the steps with a sickening thud as the crowd groaned in sympathy. This gave Arisa the space she needed to gather herself as she sized up her opponent. Tam groggily pulled herself up with the steps just as Arisa raced in and leaped over them to slam her knee into Tam’s face! As Tam collapsed onto the floor, Arisa released a deep primal shout.
She grabbed two handfuls of Tam’s gear and rolled her into the ring, eyes full of the fire of battle. Arisa held onto Tam as she re-entered the ring and kept glaring right in Tam’s eyes the whole time. She was more determined than ever to claim the prize which Tam had only just reclaimed! The Dark Star pulled Tam to her knees and slammed a series of knees into her face, then slammed Tam into the mat hard. Yet Tam forced herself back up into a sitting position - Arisa nailed her with a dropkick. With Tam down, Arisa went for the cover.
Tam kicked out!
Arisa smirked at this and hopped to her feet, stalking Tam as the champion struggled to the corner. The chants of “LET’S GO TAM!” grew louder again as she climbed up the turnbuckles to her feet. She locked eyes with Arisa and staggered toward the center of the ring to engage the challenger once again. Arisa obliged Tam by unleashing a flurry of kicks that staggered Tam but didn’t take her down. Face betraying her growing frustration, Arisa stepped back and nailed Tam with a stiff Brazilian Kick! Tam’s head hung down but she still wouldn’t fall! Suddenly Arisa spun around and went for a Pulsar Kick - no! Tam suddenly found the presence of mind to lash out with a high kick right to Arisa’s incoming leg! Arisa spun around and looked as if she might fall to the mat herself. To the shock of the fans she used the momentum to pitch forward to the ropes, which she then sprung up and propelled herself from to hit a 1399! After she connected, both women crashed to the mat; Tam was unmoving and looked like she’d had the lights turned out while Arisa clutched her right leg. Chants of “LET’S GO TAM!” were still there but now chants of “THIS IS AWESOME!” mingled in with them.
Mauro Ranallo: Mamma Mia, what a contest this is! Both of these fantastic athletes are running on instinct in pursuit of the greatest prize in professional wrestling!
Nigel McGuinness: Every time Arisa has gone for that match ending Pulsar Kick, Tam’s been able to counter it. But the more damage the champion takes and the longer this match goes, her ability to keep avoiding it must surely be diminishing. No one has ever kicked out of the Pulsar Kick, and if she can hit it, we’re going to have a new champion.
While still clutching her leg, Arisa crawled over toward the motionless Tam inch by inch. When she got there, Arisa covered the champion.
Tam’s arm shot up from the mat to a thunderous pop!
Arisa shook her head in disbelief, then immediately held the back of it in pain. The damage she’d taken over the course of the night was taking a toll on her. Still, she got to her feet and started to measure Tam again. Tam somehow found the strength to get back up and she motioned for Arisa to come at her again! Arisa shouted angrily and slammed her forearm into Tam’s chest. Tam stumbled but responded with her own. The two quickly began exchanging increasingly rapid forearm shots as the crowd loudly showed their appreciation for the fighting spirit on display. Slowly Arisa’s blows grew fewer and Tam’s overwhelmed her to the delight of the fans. Arisa staggered back toward the ropes, her right leg causing her to nearly trip over herself. Seeing an opening Tam ran the ropes and went into a handstand to set up a handspring elbow. A thunderingly shocked pop erupted as Arisa cut Tam out of mid air with a Brazilian Kick! She went for the cover!
Tam got her shoulder up!
Arisa’s disbelief at Tam’s continued resilience was clear on her face. She grabbed at Tam to try and lock in the anaconda vice again, but Tam slammed an elbow right into her face to break the hold. Both women were on their knees and exchanged punches as all of their emotions bubbled to the surface. Arisa got to her feet first, pulling Tam up with her as she hammered away at the champion with more punches. She tried to shove Tam back to create the space for a Pulsar Kick but Tam slipped behind Arisa for the Twilight Dream! Tam managed to get one of Arisa’s wrists but couldn’t seize the other as Arisa kicked her in the knee with her right leg! Tam released the hold and Arisa spun around her to suddenly lock in the Black Hold!
Maruo Ranallo: This is the move Arisa tried to cinch in against Alyssa Gutierrez in her Warfare debut! Is Tam Nakano about to tap to the move Arisa has dedicated to the Crimson Queen?!
Nigel McGuiness: Arisa Hoshiki has been firmly in control of this match for a while, but can she lock in this hold to finish off the champion?
Arisa’s arm muscles tensed as she pulled Tam close and worked the hold with all her might. Tam put her own strength to use and dug her feet into the mat to avoid being pulled to the center of the room and certain doom. Again Arisa tugged on the hold to make it tighter, and Tam’s outstretched arm started to go a bit limp. Just before the referee was about to check on her, Tam suddenly found enough life to elbow Arisa in the right leg. The challenger’s grip weakened as her solid base was chipped away by another elbow, then another! To the delight of the fans Tam broke out and landed a nasty super kick to Arisa’s right knee that forced the Dark Star to one knee. With a shout of ‘Let’s go!’ Tam ran the ropes and connected with a Violet Shoot! She hooked Arisa’s leg for the pin.
Arisa got her shoulder up!
Tam held her head in disbelief as Arisa managed to escape and the fans went crazy. Both women’s resilience was drawing the appreciation of the crowd now. Tam slowly started smiling and watched eagerly as Arisa fought to her knees through gritted teeth. She got to her feet and leveled Arisa with a buzzsaw kick! With Arisa prone, Tam went to the top corner and slapped the top turnbuckle emphatically. Tam ascended to the top rope, looked over her shoulder back at Arisa and then flew through the air for a moonsault! After full impact, she again hooked Arisa’s leg for a pin.
Arisa kicked out!
Tam sensed the end might be near and so got to her somewhat unsteady feet while motioning for Arisa to get up. Arisa rolled over off her back and grabbed Tam’s foot. Using the champion’s leg for purchase, Arisa climbed back to her feet and defiantly glared into Tam’s eyes. Tam kneed her in the face, spinning Arisa around into position for the Twilight Dream! She lifted Arisa off the mat - no! Arisa escaped Tam’s grip, slipped behind her and hit a high angle German suplex! She tried to bridge for the pin but her leg gave out on her. Both of them lay there on the mat, trying to clear out the mental fog while another chant was heard: “FIGHT FOREVER!”
Mauro Ranallo: Both women are exhausting everything in their arsenal to get the victory tonight to no avail. Tam Nakano is showing why she’s the champion with her resilience tonight, but Arisa Hoshiki is pushing Tam to her limits in this explosive main event.
Nigel McGuinness: This may well come down to who can hit their finishing move first. Don’t forget that no one has kicked out of the Twilight Dream in EBWF either. One Twilight Dream or one Pulsar Kick may be all it takes at this stage in the contest.
Arisa and Tam each rolled to the ropes at about the same time as the chant went on. Tam’s expression was full of exhausted determination as she climbed up to her feet. Meanwhile when the camera zoomed in on Arisa’s face, we saw a mix of extreme frustration and burning passion in her expression. Both women slowly began to circle the ring, Arisa doing so with a noticeable limp. Finally the two locked eyes again and moved toward each other to attack once again. Tam was first to land a blow, a spinning roundhouse to the ribs! Arisa staggered back on her injured leg and then came roaring back in with a savate kick to Tam’s chest! Tam staggered back, then surged forward to nail a middle kick to Arisa! Arisa responded by holding her ground and kicking Tam in the thigh! As the two exchanged kicks, dueling chants were briefly heard: “TAM NA-KA-NO!” followed by “A-RI-SA!” Both women threw their full strength into the kicks and neither got an opening until Arisa changed it up and hit a step up knee strike using Tam’s leg as a launching pad! With the champion thus staggered, Arisa stepped back and nailed Tam with a Brazilian Kick that had Tam dead on her feet. A fierce smile crossed Arisa’s lips as she ran to the ropes and launched herself from the middle rope for a springboard star cutter! Just as she was about to make contact Tam screamed and caught Arisa out of mid air! She kneed Arisa in the back, then spun her around and lifted her up into the suplex position. To a big pop she hit the Violet Screwdriver right onto Arisa’s shoulders and neck! Tam went for the cover.
Th-NO! Arisa kicked out so emphatically that she propelled herself out from under the stunned champion. The semi-split crowd popped for the kick out and the battle continued.
Mauro Ranallo: No! What is it going to take for one of these valiant competitors to score the victory?!
Nigel McGuinness: Tam just landed that move right to Arisa’s upper back and more importantly her neck. With her history of injuries to the neck and head, you have to wonder if it was a bad idea for her to kick out of the Violet Screwdriver. Her desire to take the EBWF Women’s Championship tonight is putting her career at risk.
Mauro Ranallo: And don’t forget that Arisa Hoshiki already fought in support of Utami Hayashishita against Liv Morgan earlier tonight. The guts she’s showing here in this contest are unmatched, but what does she have left?
Tam sat back in disbelief as Arisa clutched the back of her neck in pain. There was anguish on Tam’s face as she watched Arisa fight her way back to her knees. Tam got back to her feet and gazed down at the challenger, eyes begging her to stay down. Arisa responded by gritting her teeth, climbing to unsteady feet and slapping Tam in the face! Tam held her cheek in stunned silence for a long moment before slapping Arisa right back! Arisa super kicked Tam so hard that she stumbled back to the ropes, but Tam rebounded and suddenly went for the Andromeda! Before she could flip Arisa into the pinning position, the Dark Star countered and lifted Tam onto her shoulder for the Diamond Buster! Before she could hit that Arisa’s right leg wavered, giving Tam the opening to slip out the back. WIthout missing a beat Tam ran the ropes again and then leaped into the air for a leaping knee strike! Arisa side stepped it, but Tam got behind her to try one more time for the Twilight Dream. This time Arisa spun out of it and caught Tam square in the head with the Pulsar Kick to a huge shocked reaction from the crowd. The momentum of the kick sent Arisa crashing to her knees and Tam through the middle rope and out onto the arena floor. There the camera lingered on the motionless form of Tam Nakano, who’d gotten all of Arisa’s most devastating move.
Mauro Ranallo: Pulsar Kick! Pulsar Kick! Good god, what impact! Tam Nakano is out!
Nigel McGuinness: But falls can only be counted in the ring, and that Pulsar Kick evicted the champion from the ring. It’s now a question of if Arisa Hoshiki, weakened leg and all, can get Tam back into the ring to pin her. If she can, we’ve got a new champion to close out 2023.
While the dueling chants for each woman intermixed with “THIS IS AWESOME!” ones, Arisa rolled out of the ring and stared down at Tam. She realized she had to get the champion into the ring to secure her victory, but at this point Tam was dead weight! Still Arisa bent over and hooked her arms under Tam’s to pull her off the floor. She got her part way and then her leg gave away and she fell to the floor. Pain filled her face as she slammed a fist onto the ring apron - she was so close! Arisa got up onto her left knee, then worked at getting Tam back up into the ring. Suddenly there was a cascade of boos and Arisa’s expression turned incredulous. When the camera swung around to the entrance ramp, it caught Utami Hayashishita and Himeka standing atop the stage!
Mauro Ranallo: Oh come on! Queen’s Court has no place in this match, even if it is no holds barred.
Nigel McGuinness: Utami Hayashishita looks determined to ensure that Queen’s Court leaves with the gold tonight.
Just as Queen’s Court arrived Arisa stared right at Utami. The camera caught her calling up to her queen.
Arisa: Utami, trust me! I can do this!
Utami still made a move to head down the ramp just as a flood of security personnel rushed the stage to prevent her from doing so. While this happened the camera swung back around to show Arisa put all her strength behind her strained efforts to lift Tam into the ring. After stumbling once more, she managed to roll the champion into the ring at last. Arisa scrambled into the ring and went for the cover.
1.. The crowd went silent in anticipation of an upset.
2.. it got so quiet you could hear a pin drop.
Th-NO! Tam’s arm shot up at 2.9!!
Arisa sat there holding her head in disbelief that even with a delayed pin her kick hadn’t ended the champion’s reign. Immediately afterward Tam’s arms wrapped around Arisa’s waist and grabbed the challenger’s wrists. As Arisa screamed in surprise and the crowd roared in disbelief, Tam got to one foot, then both feet while holding the Dark Star in place. She screamed “OWARI!!!” and threw Arisa backwards, finally connecting with the Twilight Dream! Tam bridged and the ref counted the pin.
To one of the loudest pops heard in a very long time, the bell rang and Tam collapsed to the mat in exhaustion next to Arisa.
Christy Hemme: Here is your winner, and STILL EBWF Women’s Champion: Taaaaaam Nakaaaaanoooo!
While “Twilight Dream” played over the PA system, Tam breathed heavily from the exertion of the war she’d just fought. In a few moments she sat up, drenched in sweat and finally realizing what she’d accomplished. With a reluctant smile she stood up and accepted the EBWF Women’s Championship from the ref. After slinging it over her shoulder, Tam’s arm was raised in victory. Yet her eyes were firmly on Arisa Hoshiki, her former best friend. Arisa lay on the mat, clutching her head in both hands as her failure sunk in.
Rather than celebrating Tam just watched as Arisa crawled to the ropes and pulled herself into a sitting position. As the camera zoomed in on her, tears could be seen rolling down Arisa’s cheeks. The end of the match had released her pent up emotions, and she looked devastated. Tam took a step toward Arisa, and as if motivated by this Arisa clutched her right leg and got to her feet. Despite her best effort to look defiant, Arisa was a wreck as she locked eyes with Tam. She shook her head, waved off Tam and tried to exit the ring. Before she could, Tam grabbed her wrist firmly. Arisa turned around slowly to face the champion and was shocked when Tam threw her arms around the Dark Star. She pulled Arisa into a tight hug, which she held for a long while. While the tears kept rolling down her cheeks, Arisa didn’t resist or return the hug. Instead she just stood there, being hugged by her former rival turned best friend turned rival again.
Once Tam released the hug, Arisa exchanged a gaze with the champion and then shook her head. Despite Tam’s invitation to stay in the ring, Arisa stepped through the ropes and hopped down to the floor. She limped toward the back as the camera focused back on Tam Nakano. The champion climbed the nearby turnbuckles and held her title aloft as her music played on.
Nigel McGuinness: What a tremendous match we just witnessed tonight! Arisa Hoshiki gave this everything she had, and she’s got nothing to be ashamed of. She nearly won the championship tonight, and she’s proven herself a force to be reckoned with in EBWF.
Mauro Ranallo: But tonight Tam Nakano has done what she never could before. The last time she held the EBWF Women’s Championship she lost it in her first defense. Tonight she’s retained it in an emotionally charged war against Arisa Hoshiki. Who knows where her Twilight Dream will take her next? Or where the Dark Star goes from here, for that matter. But for now we’ll leave you with your EBWF Women’s Champion, Tam Nakano! Good night all! Happy Holidays, and see you on Warfare in 2023!
The show ended on a shot of Tam heading up the entrance ramp, EBWF Women’s Championship held aloft as she smiled triumphantly.