By Jason Powell, Prowrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WWE Mixed Match Challenge
Aired on Facebook Watch
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at PPG Paints Arena
The show was hosted by Michael Cole, Beth Phoenix, and Corey Graves… Becky Lynch was introduced as the winner of the fan vote to replace Charlotte in this match. Bobby Roode made his entrance and he and Lynch did the Glorious pose together in the ring. Sasha Banks and then Finn Balor made their entrances…
1. Bobby Roode and Becky Lynch vs. Finn Balor and Sasha Banks in a semifinal match. Cole noted that Kurt Angle was backstage chatting with fans in the comments section. Roode and Balor started the match. The women checked in a couple of minutes in. Lynch performed a couple of armdrags. Banks teased a punch, but she stopped short.
Banks offered a handshake. Lynch held up four fingers and spoke about the Four Horsewomen. Banks questioned it and asked if she saw what she did to Bayley on Raw. Lynch said she saw what Bayley did to her. Banks threw punches at Lynch and the women tagged out again moments later.
The women checked in again a short time later. Lynch hit an exploder suplex and a missile dropkick for a two count. Cole noted that Lynch was a temporary replacement for Charlotte, thus Charlotte was presumably return for the finals if her team wins. Banks came back and went up top, but Lynch caught her and superplexed her. Cole noted that Charlotte tweeted that she would definitely return if her team made it to the finals.
The men tagged in at 8:35. Balor was the aggressor and knocked Roode off the ropes with a kick and got a near fall. Roode came back with a near fall of his own. Balor caught Roode with a dropkick. Balor looked like he was thinking about going for his finisher, but Banks wanted a tag and got one. Banks went up top and then Lynch ran over and took the double knee press. Banks dumped Roode to ringside and performed a suicide dive on him. Banks returned to the ring and Lynch caught her in an inside cradle and pinned her. Graves blamed the loss on Banks being a glory hound…
Bobby Roode and Becky Lynch defeated Finn Balor and Sasha Banks in 11:35.
The broadcast team spoke about Roode and Charlotte facing The Miz and Asuka in the finals. Cole stressed that Charlotte and Asuka will be in the same ring together five days before their match at WrestleMania.
Kurt Angle’s music played and he walked onto the stage while Roode and Lynch were celebrating their win. Angle spoke about how the MMC finals feature Raw and Smackdown teams. He said the real winners are the charities, as the winning team’s charity gets $100,000. Cole hyped the finals while Roode and Lynch celebrated in the ring to close the show….
Powell’s POV: The show peaked with roughly 63,700 live viewers. Well, so much for the theory that WWE held out Charlotte because they wanted to avoid having her and Asuka on opposite teams so close to WrestleMania. In truth, Charlotte reportedly had a dental issue that sidelined her for tonight, but won’t keep her out of WrestleMania. I suppose they could come up with an excuse to keep her out of the finals, but my guess is that they want as many views as possible for the MMC finals and giving fans a previews of Asuka vs. Charlotte will help even if I’d rather see them kept apart until WrestleMania. Speaking of previews, here’s hoping that what we saw with Lynch and Banks was a preview to the two of them ending up on the same brand following the next shakeup.
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The Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell features Brian Fritz of Sporting News and Between The Ropes discussing WrestleMania 36, WWE television from the empty WWE Performance Center, his own travel woes, NFL free agency, and more...