Warfare went live from Lincoln, Nebraska as the crowd inside the Pinnacle Bank Arena went wild and pyro shot off all over the stage.
Mauro Ranallo: Get ready folks… it’s time for Warfare!
Nigel McGuinness: Tonight we determine who will go onto the finals of the Queen of the Ring Tournament and who will advance to the Semi Finals of the King of the Ring Tournament as we prepare for Total Supremacy later this week.
Mauro Ranallo: Now, the first of those matches… Christian Cage takes on Max Caster of The Acclaimed!
The Acclaimed’s music hit and the crowd was on their feet as Anthony Bowens and Max Caster came from behind the curtain. They were walking down the ramp, and Caster had a microphone in hand.
Max Caster: Yo… you… listen. Listen….
The crowd began to boo when suddenly Christian Cage came from behind the curtain and clubbed Caster in the back of the head. Bowens was incensed, but Christian grabbed Caster by the upper body and threw him into the ring. He rolled under the bottom rope and began to take the fight to Caster as the referee rang the bell.
Mauro Ranallo: This is absolutely despicable behavior from Christian Cage!
Nigel McGuinness: But it may just do the job!
Caster hit snake eyes, and then a snap DDT. The crowd was quickly behind him as he taunted Christian Cage relentlessly, trying to get under his skin. He unleashed a barrage of verbal jabs as he traded bunches with Cage.
Mauro Ranallo: This crowd wants a fight!
With the crowd cheering them on, Caster charged at Cage, aiming to overpower him with his strength and agility. Caster executed a series of high-flying moves and devastating strikes, displaying his athleticism and raw power. But Christian Cage, a ring veteran with years of experience, showcased his defensive prowess, expertly countering Caster's onslaught.
Nigel McGuinness: Christian showing some ring awareness that Max Caster could only hope to develop!
As the match progressed, Christian Cage began to seize control. He unleashed a flurry of punishing maneuvers, showcasing his technical finesse and relentless determination. Cage executed flawless suplexes, devastating powerbombs, and bone-crushing submissions, leaving Caster reeling.
Mauro Ranallo: Caster senses an opening!
But it wasn’t to be, as Christian countered.
Nigel McGuinness: Killswitch!
Christian went for the cover.
Mauro Ranallo: Could it be!
Nigel McGuinness: Christian Cage has done it! He is the first of four to advance here tonight.
Mauro Ranallo: We’ll find out if his opponent will be Trent or Hook as the King of the Ring tournament continues tonight!
Mauro Ranallo: Up next, we’ve got the first of our Queen of the Ring semi final matches as Jamie Hayter goes one on one with Arisa Hoshiki!
Jamie Hayter made her way to the ring first, followed by Arisa Hoshiki. When both women were in the ring, the referee called for the bell. Hayter immediately charged towards Hoshiki, taking her down with a shoulder tackle before stomping on her several times. Hayter pulled Hoshiki to her feet and threw her into the corner, where she hit her with a series of punches. Hayter then pulled Hoshiki out of the corner and hit a snapmare, and as Hoshiki sat up, Hayter hit her with hammer and anvil strikes.
Nigel McGuinness: An aggressive start by Southampton's finest export, Jamie Hayter!
Hayter tried to put Hoshiki in a dragon sleeper, but Hoshiki fought out of it before Hayter could lock it in, and as both women got to their feet, Hoshiki hit Hayter with an enzuigiri. Hoshiki then whipped Hayter into the corner, before charging towards her and hitting a double knee strike! As Hayter stumbled out of the corner, Hoshiki hit her with a suplex, then ran towards the ropes and hit a springboard double knee drop!
Mauro Ranallo: Incredible athleticism there by Arisa Hoshiki!
Arisa hooked the leg and the referee counted - 1… 2… Hayter kicked out! Hoshiki pulled Hayter to her feet and hit her with a series of punches, but Hayter fought back with some right hands of her own, then whipped Hoshiki against the ropes. As Hoshiki ran back towards her, Hayter hit a big boot, then grabbed Hoshiki by the leg and put her in a single leg Boston crab! Hoshiki cried out in pain, but she was able to get to the ropes and the referee ordered Hayter to break the hold. Hayter did so, but as Arisa Hoshiki got to her feet, Hayter trapped her against the ropes and hit her with a series of forearm strikes in quick succession. Hayter then dragged Hoshiki towards the center of the ring and ran against the ropes, going for Hayterade… but at the same time she went to hit it, Arisa caught her with a knee strike! Both women fell to the mat, and were down for several seconds before slowly getting back to their feet. Once they were on their feet, Hayter and Hoshiki began hitting one another with chops, and after gaining the upper hand, Hoshiki went to whip Hayter into the corner… but Hayter reversed the Irish whip, sending Hoshiki into the corner, then sat Hoshiki on the top rope. Hayter hit Hoshiki with a superplex, which she immediately transitioned into the Ushigoroshi! Hayter hooked the leg and the referee counted - 1… 2… Arisa kicked out just before the 3!
Nigel McGuinness: That was incredible from Jamie Hayter, Mauro! I can’t believe Arisa Hoshiki was able to kick out!
Hayter looked stunned at only getting a two count, and began pounding the mat in frustration. As both women got to their feet, Arisa backed into the corner, but as Jamie Hayter ran towards her, Arisa hit a springboard roundhouse kick, knocking Hayter back. Hoshiki then climbed to the top rope and hit a diving knee strike, taking Hayter down! She hooked the leg and the referee counted - 1… 2… Hayter kicked out! As Hayter got to her feet, Hoshiki hit a springboard cutter, then hooked the leg once more. The referee counted - 1… 2… again Hayter kicked out! Hoshiki let out a cry, then dragged Hayter to her feet, this time hitting the Pulsar Kick! She hooked the leg a third time, and the referee counted - 1… 2… 3!
Mauro Ranallo: It’s over! A hard fought victory, but Arisa Hoshiki advances to the Queen of the Ring final!
As “Star Ship” played through the PA system, Jamie Hayter and Arisa Hoshiki stared across the ring in a somewhat grudging respect after their hard-hitting match. Then suddenly the music distorted and turned to static. Both women looked as confused as the crowd at the unexpected sound, which continued for a few beats. When the static faded, it was replaced by the sound of a woman singing an unfamiliar tune accompanied by a shamisen. We briefly saw Jamie react with a sign of recognition in her expression before the shot switched to the entrance ramp.
There we saw a mysterious figure step out; their identity was concealed by a black hoodie with a purple circle spray painted on the front, the hood pulled over their head. As the camera zoomed in, we saw them wearing a black mask with metallic purple and silver trim forming a demon's face. They walked purposefully down to the ring, a duffel bag swinging from their shoulder.
Mauro Ranallo: Mamma Mia, that's the same person we've seen meeting with Jamie Hayter throughout the Queen of the Ring tournament! She's finally emerging from the shadows, and with a mysterious bag no less.
Nigel McGuiness: I have a feeling I know what's going on, Mauro. That music is well known in the promotion Arisa Hoshiki and Jamie Hayter first clashed in. But it couldn't be! That unit has no presence in EBWF.
The camera followed the unknown woman as she climbed up the ring steps. As she stepped through the ropes we saw she wore black and red kick pads with kanji down the front in one side. Arisa immediately squared up despite her exhaustion, expecting a fight. Jamie meanwhile stared at the woman expectantly, working a kink out of her neck. At first the woman turned to face Arisa and made a hand gesture roughly approximating the letters 'O-T'. Arisa gazed down at the kanji on the woman's kick pads, then back up at her and shook her head. Still the woman extended a hand to the Shining Star.
Nigel McGuiness: That hand gesture, that mask, it has to be! Has Oedo Tai arrived in EBWF?
Mauro Ranallo: Arisa Hoshiki looks sickened by this offer, whatever it is!
Arisa slapped the hand away and then climbed out of the ring to create distance between them. The mystery woman shrugged, then turned to face Jamie. She made the same gesture to the Lord and Savior, who grinned. When a hand was offered, Jamie didn't hesitate to shake it! To gasps from the crowd, the masked woman reached into her bag and pulled out a black shirt. She handed it to Jamie, who pulled it on over her ring gear. We quickly saw a logo bearing the words 'OEDO TAI' - the villainous unit Jamie had joined while in Japan! The mystery woman unzipped her hoodie to reveal she was wearing the same shirt! She and Jamie high fived as Arisa shook her head and rushed to the back.
Nigel McGuiness: It's official, one of the oldest and most legendary units in women's wrestling has arrived in EBWF! Jamie Hayter was a member in Japan, and now she's a founding member of their first unit outside of that country!
Mauro Ranallo: And what's more ominous is that they appear to be recruiting! Arisa Hoshiki turned them down, but there may be others like Jamie who will listen to the offer.
"Oedo Ranbu" hit again and the first two members of the new unit exited the ring to a shocked reaction from the crowd. At the top of the ramp, they made the unit gesture and headed to the back. A beat later the shot faded into a graphic for the next match.
“RPG Vice” hit and the crowd cheered as Trent made his way to the ring, accompanied by Rocky Romero.
Mauro Ranallo: And here comes Trent… can he defeat Hook to advance to the semi finals of the King of the Ring tournament?
When Trent was in the ring, “The Chairman’s Intent” by Action Bronson hit and Hook headed down the ramp. Upon entering the ring, Hook walked to the corner, keeping his back turned to Trent until the bell rang. Once the bell rang, Hook turned around and locked up with Trent. Hook set Trent up for a headlock takedown, but Trent blocked it, then hit Hook with a back drop!
Nigel McGuinness: Great counter there by Trent! Hook looks a little surprised…
Both men got to their feet and Trent hit Hook with a series of punches, then whipped him into the corner. Trent ran at Hook, going for a flying back elbow smash… but Hook moved out of the way at the last second! Hook then grabbed Trent from behind, hitting a German suplex! Both of Trent’s shoulders were down, and the referee counted - 1… 2… Trent kicked out! After Trent got his shoulder up, Hook got to his feet and grabbed Trent by the leg, putting him in a kneebar! Trent was able to get to the ropes, and the referee ordered Hook to break the hold. Hook did so, then took a step back, allowing Trent time to get to his feet. Trent used the ropes to pull himself up, and when he was back on his feet, Hook went to hit him with a clothesline… but Trent ducked out of the way and pulled down on the ropes, sending Hook to the outside. As Hook landed on the outside, the crowd started to boo, and the camera cut to the ramp, revealing that Christian Cage was on his way to the ring!
Mauro Ranallo: Oh my, Nigel. I think Christian Cage is going to try and get involved here…
At Christian reached the bottom of the ramp, Hook got to his feet. He locked eyes with Christian and clenched his fists, readying himself for a fight. Christian smirked, then slid into the ring and hit Trent with a clothesline right in front of the referee!
Nigel McGuinness: Well that was unexpected!
The referee called the bell, then spoke to Christy Hemme, who announced the outcome of the match to the crowd.
Christy Hemme: As a result of outside interference, Hook has been disqualified. Therefore, the winner of this match is Trent!
Mauro Ranallo: Well now it makes more sense, Nigel! Christian knew exactly what he was doing… he attacked Trent to get Hook disqualified, and cost him the match!
Hook pleaded with the referee to reverse the decision, but the referee shook his head, making it clear his decision was final. As Hook argued with the referee, Christian attacked him, hitting Hook with a series of punches. Hook fought back with some punches of his own, then hit Christian with an exploder suplex! As Christian got to his feet, Trent grabbed him, hitting a DDT! As Christian rolled out of the ring and retreated up the ramp, Trent and Hook began arguing. The referee tried to separate them as Warfare went to a commercial break.
When Warfare returned from the commercial break, the camera cut to Mauro Ranallo and Nigel McGuinness at ringside.
Mauro Ranallo: Welcome back! Before the break, we saw Trent advance to the semi finals of the King of the Ring tournament in rather controversial circumstances!
A replay was shown of Christian Cage attacking Trent, thereby giving Trent a victory over Hook by disqualification.
Nigel McGuinness: During the break, we’ve had it confirmed that the referee’s decision is final, and therefore Trent will face the winner of this next match in the King of the Ring semi finals on Sunday. Will it be the Breakout Champion, Brock Anderson? Or will it be someone Trent has a lot of history with… the 12-time EBWF World Champion, Chris Jericho?
Brock Anderson made his way to the ring first, with the fans inside the arena booing him loudly as he walked down the ramp. When Anderson was in the ring, “Judas” by Fozzy hit, and the crowd cheered and sang along as Chris Jericho headed to the ring. As Jericho entered the ring, Brock Anderson tried to shake his hand. Jericho shook his head and slapped Anderson’s hand away, then hit him with a series of punches as the referee called for the bell.
Nigel McGuinness: Before this match, Jericho talked about teaching Brock Anderson some respect… but Anderson tried to be respectful there, and Jericho took a cheap shot!
Mauro Ranallo: Oh come on, Nigel… you and I both know that Brock Anderson only wanted to shake Jericho’s hand so he could get a cheap shot in. Jericho outsmarted him though!
Jericho whipped Anderson against the ropes and took him down with a shoulder tackle, then as Anderson got to his feet, Jericho hit him with a back drop. As Anderson got back up, Jericho chopped him, but Anderson retaliated with a chop of his own! The two men began exchanging chops to the chest, and after gaining the upper hand, Jericho went to whip Anderson into the corner… but Anderson blocked the Irish whip, instead pulling Jericho towards him and taking Jericho down with a clothesline! As Jericho sat up, Anderson put him in a chinlock, but Jericho fought out of it and got back to his feet. The two men exchanged right hands back and forth, and this time Brock Anderson was able to gain the upper hand. He whipped Jericho against the ropes, but as Jericho hit the ropes he held onto the top rope, stopping himself. Anderson reacted quickly, hitting Jericho with a big boot and sending him to the outside!
Nigel McGuinness: Quick reflexes there by Brock Anderson, who is holding his own against Chris Jericho here!
As Jericho got to his feet on the outside, Anderson went to hit him with a baseball slide, but Jericho moved out of the way, then pulled Anderson out of the ring. Jericho slammed Anderson’s head against the edge of the ring, then threw Anderson into the ringside barrier! Anderson stumbled to his feet looking dazed, and Jericho lifted him up, body slamming the Breakout Champion onto the floor! Jericho then rolled back into the ring, telling the referee to continue with the count.
Mauro Ranallo: I’m surprised Jericho is trying to go for the count out victory here… I thought for sure he’d want to try and pin Brock Anderson, or make him submit!
Nigel McGuinness: I don’t think Jericho cares how he wins, Mauro… he just wants to win.
As the referee reached the count of 7, Anderson got to his feet and rolled back into the ring. Jericho went for the Judas Effect, but Anderson ducked underneath it, then grabbed Jericho and threw him shoulder first into the ring post! Jericho fell to the mat, clutching his shoulder, and Anderson pulled him away from the corner, then put him in a Fujiwara armbar! Jericho was able to get his foot on the bottom rope, and the referee ordered Anderson to break the hold, but Anderson refused! The referee threatened to disqualify Anderson, and began counting - 1… 2… 3… 4… Anderson broke the hold just before the count of 5. Anderson then stomped on Jericho several times, before pulling him up and hitting a DDT. He hooked the leg and the referee counted - 1… 2… Jericho kicked out! Anderson pulled Jericho to his feet once again and whipped him into the corner, before hitting him with a series of punches. Jericho fought back with some right hands of his own, then as Anderson stumbled backwards, Jericho climbed to the top rope and hit a diving double axe handle! Anderson fell to the mat, and Jericho hooked the leg. The referee counted - 1… 2… Anderson kicked out!
Mauro Ranallo: A great move there by Jericho, but not enough to get the 3 count!
As Jericho got to his feet, he grabbed Anderson by the legs, going for the Walls of Jericho, but Anderson kicked Jericho away and got to his feet, then the two men exchanged right hands back and forth. After gaining the upper hand, Jericho hit Anderson with a double underhook powerbomb, then went for the Walls of Jericho once again… and this time, he was able to lock it in!
Nigel McGuinness: Brock Anderson is in trouble now! Is he going to tap?
Jericho yelled at the referee to “ask him”, but Anderson shook his head and crawled towards the ropes, grabbing onto the bottom rope. The referee ordered Jericho to break the hold, and Jericho did so, then started stomping on Anderson. Jericho dragged Anderson back towards the center of the ring, and went to put him back in the Walls of Jericho… but Anderson rolled Jericho up into a small package! The referee counted - 1… 2… Jericho kicked out! As both men got to their feet, Jericho went for the Judas Effect, but Anderson dodged it and rolled Jericho up, this time grabbing the tights! The referee didn’t see it and made the count - 1… 2… 3!
Nigel McGuinness: What an upset! Brock Anderson has beaten Chris Jericho!
Mauro Ranallo: He cheated, Nigel!
Nigel McGuinness: Like we said before, Mauro… the referee’s decision is final!
Anderson rolled out of the ring and celebrated on the ramp as Jericho argued with the referee, telling him that Anderson had cheated. As Anderson headed to the back, a promotional video for Total Supremacy began to play.
Mauro Ranallo: Still to come, we’ve got Damian Priest versus Edge in our main event. But first, we’ll find out who will face Arisa Hoshiki in the Queen of the Ring final this Sunday at Total Supremacy, as Maika takes on Sakisama in our second semi final match!
Sakisama made her way to the ring first, followed by Maika. As the bell rang, Sakisama hit Maika with a series of kicks, taking her down to the mat, where she stomped on Maika several times. As Maika got to her feet, Sakisama put her in a headlock, but Maika was able to counter it into a hammerlock, then she put Sakisama in a headlock of her own. Sakisama was able to fight out of it, and after whipping Maika against the ropes, she went for a big boot… but Maika sidestepped it, then hit Sakisama with a stiff punch to the midsection!
Nigel McGuinness: Smart move there by Maika… she might have just knocked the wind out of Sakisama!
Maika followed up with a DDT, then hooked the leg. The referee counted - 1… 2… Sakisama kicked out! Maika pulled Sakisama to her feet and went to whip her into the corner, but Sakisama reversed the Irish whip, sending Maika into the corner before hitting her with a corner big boot. Maika fell into a corner position, and Sakisama hit her with several kicks before applying a foot choke! The referee threatened to disqualify Sakisama and began counting - 1… 2… 3… 4… Sakisama removed her foot just before the count of 5. She pulled Maika to her feet and hit a snapmare, then as Maika sat up, Sakisama hit her with a kick to the back! Maika cried out in pain, and Sakisama taunted her before hitting her with a boot to the face and hooking the leg. The referee counted - 1… 2… Maika kicked out! Sakisama got to her feet and stomped on Maika several times, then pulled her to her feet and ran against the ropes. Sakisama went for the Academy Award Kick… but Maika ducked underneath it, then grabbed Sakisama and hit a powerslam! Maika followed up with the Maika Cutter, then hooked the leg. The referee counted - 1… 2… Sakisama kicked out!
Mauro Ranallo: Another near fall! This match has been full of back and forth action, Nigel… I think it’s going to take something special to end it.
Maika pulled Sakisama to her feet and set her up for a powerbomb, but Sakisama countered with a back body drop, then as Maika got back to her feet, Sakisama hit her with a series of punches. Maika fought back with some punches of her own, then dragged Sakisama down to the mat and put her in the cross armbreaker!
Nigel McGuinness: Is Maika going to submit Sakisama here?!
Sakisama was able to get her foot on the bottom rope, and the referee ordered Maika to break the hold. Maika did so, then as both women got to their feet, they exchanged right hands back and forth once more. This time, Sakisama was able to gain the upper hand, and she whipped Maika against the ropes before hitting a leg lariat. As both women got to their feet, Sakisama hit a reverse STO, then locked Maika in the Versailles Choke!
Mauro Ranallo: Maika is in real trouble now… if she doesn’t tap out, she might get choked out!
The referee asked Maika if she wanted to tap, but she refused, then tried to get to the ropes. Just when it looked like Maika was going to pass out, she managed to wrap her right index finger around the bottom rope, and the referee ordered Sakisama to do so. Sakisama looked frustrated, but not wanting to get DQed, she quickly broke the hold. As Sakisama got to her feet, she looked down at Maika, who still seemed to be feeling the effects of the Versailles Choke. Sakisama pulled Maika to her feet, and as Maika stood dazed, Sakisama ran against the ropes and hit the Academy Award Kick! After making sure Maika was nowhere near the ropes, Sakisama hooked the leg and the referee counted - 1… 2… 3!
Nigel McGuinness: It’s over! It will be Arisa Hoshiki versus Sakisama in the Queen of the Ring final! What an interesting contest that will be…
Sakisama celebrated as Warfare went to a commercial break.
When Warfare returned from commercial the camera panned around the crowd quickly, so that they could capture everyone's reaction when familiar words hit the PA System.
I CAME TO PLAY!
"I Came To Play" by Downstait rocked over the PA system and the crowd quickly became unglued with excitement. Riddle was out through the curtain first on his scooter with his hat on backwards and a matching "Bro Awesome" t-shirt. He had a huge smile on his face as he scooted around the top of the ramp. A couple of beats later Michael Cole emerged with his hat on sideways and chewing a big wad of gum. After a couple of more beats, Riddle and Cole both cocked their heads towards the curtain, and the pop amplified when The 7 time and current EBWF World Champion The Miz came out with his arm around his wife Mickie James-Mizanin. Miz wore the same Bro Awesome Shirt that the other two men were donning, and Mickie wore a blue sundress. Miz had the EBWF World Championship over his right shoulder and a confident look on his face. The faction made its way down the ramp with Riddle and Cole high fiving fans who had seats right on the entrance way. The two men got in the ring first and held the ropes open for Miz and his bride to enter. Miz, Riddle, and Cole were all granted microphones by the time keeper. The crowd started a deafening BRO… AWESOME… BROOO… AWESOME... BRO… AWESOME… chant for several beats until it finally died down long enough for The Miz to start speaking.
The Miz: Miss us?
Huge pop from the capacity crowd.
The Miz: You see obviously over the past couple of weeks we've been in the King and Queen of the ring tournaments. Which is cute - because it's so painstakingly obvious that there already is a King and Queen of the ring - and you're looking at us. Then of course we have the two princes of the ring in Cole and Riddle.
Riddle: We're your kids bro…
Michael Cole: Age be damned bro.
The Miz smiled.
The Miz: Ok well maybe we don't need to be so literal, the point is, we are the closest thing that this company has to royalty. When I think of royalty I think of people that are in control. I think of people that really run things, and in the history of this company - nobody has dominated, nobody has run the show quite like BRO AWESOME!
The crowd popped again.
Riddle: We run this town bro.
Michael Cole: Jay-Z and Rihanna bro.
The Miz: So we've sat back as these tournaments have started and we've just watched. Honestly, I don't really care who comes out on top, because they're really just going to be on top of a mountain whose peak is still far below the one that our group sits upon. We're at a level that nobody can reach, and that's not going to change anytime soon.
Riddle: Different level bro.
Michael Cole: Even with cheat codes bro.
The Miz: Now a few weeks ago, it seemed as though we were on a crash course for a rematch between myself and Roman Reigns. The only problem with that is…
The Miz looked to his left and to his right. Then up, then down.
The Miz: I don't see Roman Reigns... and the reason I don't see Roman Reigns is because.. well… he hasn't been here...
Riddle: He's ghost bro.
Michael Cole: Patrick Swayze bro.
The Miz: Who knows where he is? Maybe he's at home hiding in shame... maybe he just got in his car or truck and just hit the open road… driving until he got himself a life… or a clue. Maybe he actually did get a clue and realized that no matter how many times he rolled out the same empty threats and the same empty promises, that he was never going to be good enough to dethrone me as the EBWF World Champion. Maybe that clue led to him just deciding it wasn't even worth being here. I don't know… the point is though... it doesn't look like he's showing back up anytime soon. We can add him to the list of people I humiliated into straight up leaving the company.
Riddle: Hit the road Jack... bro.
Cole popped a bubble and smiled.
The Miz: Which leads me to my next point - and that's the EBWF World Championship. If Roman has indeed left - I'm going to need someone to defend this against. The reason why I came out tonight is to express my genuine sentiment that I simply do NOT care who I'm put up against. I don't care who I have to face. I'm a 7 time EBWF World Champion, I'm a future FIRST BALLOT EBWF Hall of Famer. I'm the greatest of the great, cream of the crop, your favorite wrestler's...
Crowd: FAVORITE WRESTLER!
Riddle and Cole smiled as did Mickie.
The Miz: So my next opponent for this is simply irrelevant, because SPOILER ALERT… I'm winning… and then the next opponent… I'm WINNING AGAIN. So Roman… if you're at some broken down truck stop listening to this on your "road trip" if you have the guts to come back and face me… I'll be waiting. If not... bon voyage... godspeed... safe travels... and if anyone else wants to try and step up and make a name for themselves... be my guest..
Michael Cole: Mrs Potts and Chip bro.
The Miz: I'll be waiting - and I'll take on anybody that wants me to make them a little more relevant than they are right now. Don't take our absence these past couple of weeks as weakness. We are still very much here… we're still very much in control… and we still are very much the ROYALTY OF THIS COMPANY… the CLASS of this COMPANY… the PINNACLE of this company… because I'm The Miz...
Riddle: I'm Riddle…
Michael Cole: I'm Cole bro…
Mickie James-Mizanin: I'm Mickie!
The Miz: AND WE AREEEE
The Miz: AWEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSOMMMMMMMMEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!
The Miz flipped the microphone to the ground in unison with Cole and Riddle. Bro Awesome exited the ring to deafening cheers from the capacity crowd as Warfare went to commercial.
Mauro Ranallo: Ladies and gentlemen, our main event is just about to get underway!
"Bow" by Zeal and Ardor played as Damian Priest slowly walked down the entranceway to a mixed reaction from fans. He was flanked by Paul Heyman who followed him with a confident smirk on his face.
Mauro Ranallo: Certainly fans have yet to make up their mind on how they feel about newcomer Damian Priest, Nigel.
Nigel McGuiness: I'll tell you what isn't a mystery - his results. The man just joined EBWF, got himself in the King of the Ring tournament, and is now in the quarterfinals. What a debut!
The crowd erupted as "Metalingus" by Alter Bridge hit the speakers and the Rated R Superstar walked out to the ramp, amping up the crowd as smoke and pyrotechnics went off behind him.
Mauro Ranallo: Now here's a guy that knows all about the King of the Ring, Nigel!
Nigel McGuiness: Constantly in the final four, this man knows how to win. But can he do it again tonight?!
The referee signaled for the bell, and the two opponents shared a fist bump in the center of the ring before locking up. Both men jockeyed for position, neither willing to give an inch. Ultimately, it's Damian Priest who gained the advantage, using his power to push Edge into the ropes. Priest whipped Edge across the ring and charged after him.
Edge's back hit the turnbuckle and Priest charged forward, but Edge kicked both his legs out and connected with Priest, sending him down to the mat. Edge picked him up and put him in a headlock, hitting a takeover and trying for a pin, which got a 1-count.
As the match progressed, Edge, with his wealth of experience, targeted Priest's leg, attempting to weaken his opponent's foundation. He executed a dragonscrew, sending Damian Priest down to the mat, clutching his knee.
Mauro Ranallo: The Ultimate Opportunist shows his ring intelligence yet again, as Damian's leg looks to be damaged here!
Edge picked up Damian's leg and locked him into a leg bar, causing Priest to scream in pain, wildly swinging at Edge and trying to get him to break the hold.
Nigel McGuiness: We could see a tap out submission here!
Paul Heyman was screaming at Priest to get to the ropes as Priest struggled wildly to reach for the ropes. Priest summoned his immense strength and grabbed the bottom rope, forcing the break. Edge stood up and dragged Damian towards the center of the ring and tried to lock him back down in the leg bar when Priest connected with a bicycle kick to Edge's jaw, sending him stumbling backwards.
The tide of the match shifted when Damian Priest unleashed a furious comeback. Channeling his fighting spirit, he fired back with a barrage of strikes, utilizing his signature kicks and punches to gain momentum. Edge stumbled back towards the ropes and Damian whipped him across. He went for a clothesline on Edge's return, but Edge ducked underneath it and bounced off the opposite side. Edge went for a spear, but Damian reversed it into a spike DDT, planting Edge's head on the mat.
Mauro Ranallo: What a counter by Priest! That's gotta be it!
Priest covered Edge and got a long 2-count before Edge's shoulder came up. Priest looked gobsmacked as he slowly got up and dragged Edge to his feet. Before Damian could react, Edge hit an Edgecution, a lifting DDT which caused Damian's crumple face first on the mat. Edge slowly rolled Damian Priest to try and pin him when the lights went out in the arena.
Mauro Ranallo: What the--
The crowd reacted loudly as the sound of unhinged laughter rang out from the speakers in the arena. Suddenly the lights came back on and the referee was on his back, struggling wildly.
Mauro Ranallo: It's...it's The Fiend! And he's got the mandible claw on the referee!
Nigel McGuiness: Is this Paul Heyman's doing?!
Heyman looked on from ringside, a surprised look on his face, but one that curled into a sinister smirk. The Fiend turned and faced Edge, pointing at him and tilting his head unnervingly. Damian Priest was still out as Edge realized what was happening. Edge saw red and lunged at the Fiend, and the two exchanged blows back and forth as the crowd cheered Edge on.
Mauro Ranallo: Edge looks like he's seeing a ghost and he's fighting for his life here!
Edge and The Fiend battered each other with punches before Edge ran out of steam and stumbled backward into the ropes. He bounced off and The Fiend caught him, landing a perfect Sister Abigail. The crowd booed as The Fiend stood over the motionless Edge. Suddenly the lights went out again in the arena. The maniacal laughter returned briefly before the lights came back on, revealing that The Fiend was gone. Damian Priest began to stir, crawling towards the fallen Edge as Edge remained utterly unmoving.
Mauro Ranallo: Come on, not like this!
The referee was coming to just as Priest rolled Edge over onto his back and hooked his leg.
Mauro Ranallo: EDGE KICKED OUT!
The audible gasp from the crowd was loud as Edge got his shoulder up at a 2.95-count. The audience began to become unglued as Damian slowly tried to bring Edge back up to a vertical base. The two exchanged hard rights with dueling cheers and boos. Edge got the upper hand, punching Priest non-stop until Priest stumbled back into the turnbuckle. Edge, energized by the crowd, lifted Priest up into a seated position on the top turnbuckle and then climbed up to stand above him.
Nigel McGuiness: Is Edge going for... a hurricanrana?!
Edge, almost without hesitation, jumped up but Priest caught him, grabbing him by the arms and muscling him up into a crucifix position on the top rope.
Mauro Ranallo: No...
Priest leapt off the top rope, delivering a top-rope Razor's Edge to the Rated R Superstar!
Mauro Ranallo: MAMA MIA! I can't believe I am seeing this!
Edge crumbled to the mat on the spectacular move, and Priest, with barely anything left, draped himself across Edge's body for the ref to count.
The bell rang as Priest rolled away, lying on his back as his music began to play.
Mauro Ranallo: I am utterly shocked, Nigel! Damian Priest is going to the King of the Ring semi-finals!
Nigel McGuiness! His star keeps rising here in the EBWF! Can anyone slow his momentum?!
Mauro Ranallo: Chalk up the assist to Paul Heyman's other client, The Fiend though!
Nigel McGuiness: That's just it, Mauro. I don't think Priest knows what happened!
The referee helped him up and raised his arm in victory, but Priest was exhausted. He stepped out of the ring slowly, his eyes on Edge as Edge was still motionless in the center of the ring. The camera focused on Priest's exhausted expression as Warfare went off the air.