Super Show-Down is airing live on the WWE Network from the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) in Melbourne, Australia. Oddly, Super Show-Down featured the majority of the WWE championship matches in the first half of the event. The WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship contest kicked off Super Show-Down, and The New Day was victorious. As the Inquisitr reported, Becky Lynch retained the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship because of a disqualification, leaving many MCG fans disappointed that the match didn’t end with a clean finish. However, they were not disappointed with the ending of the WWE Championship match.
For the third time in a row at a WWE pay-per-view or special event, AJ Styles defended the title against Samoa Joe, and this time it was a no-disqualification match. If there was anything to complain about in this contest, it’s that some fans feel the WWE lessens the meaning of the main title by having it featured so early on the card. Match placement aside, per their usual, this pair of athletes put on another impressive showing. It may have not been their best match, but they told a classic in-ring story.
The WWE website describes the recent history between Samoa Joe and AJ Styles.
“Neither Superstar has cooled down their verbal and physical onslaughts since their raucous contest at SummerSlam that ultimately resolved nothing between the two rivals…Following a controversial ending to their WWE Championship Match at WWE Hell in a Cell, SmackDown General Manager Paige ruled that the next match between the two bitter enemies would be decisive. Although she deemed the referee’s decision final after a heated post-match confrontation with Samoa Joe in the backstage area, Paige decided that their next contest at WWE Super Show-Down would be ‘No Disqualification, no count-out, no excuses.’ Though Paige didn’t explicitly sanction those terms, she agreed with Joe on one thing: There had to be a winner.”
“The Phenomenal One” and Samoa Joe told an in-ring story that felt more like a classic WWE matchup from years ago, rather than the often-high-spot, rushed matches we see today. The first half of the contest featured the two superstars going at it clean, with neither superstar taking advantage of the no-disqualification stipulation. This was classic wrestling storytelling,so that when the weapons did finally come into play during the climax, it felt like a bigger deal.
Minus some rest spots in the beginning of the match, both wrestlers gave each other stiff blows from bell to bell. Somewhere along the way, Styles’ lip was busted open. Luckily, it didn’t appear to be that serious of an injury, and the sight of blood certainly brought realism to this feud. By the second half of the contest, both competitors took advantage of some steel chairs and a table. Though the WWE has banned steel chair shots to the head because of their concussion protocol, Styles kicked a chair square in the center of Joe’s forehead.
Samoa Joe was eventually put through a table in the center of the ring, and he immediately started selling his knee. This foreshadowed Styles’ Calf Crusher, which would take place about 10 minutes after the table spot. After numerous near falls and some impressive reversals, “The Phenomenal One” locked in his patented submission hold. In what came as a surprise to some fans, Samoa Joe tapped out to AJ Styles’ Calf Crusher.
While these two superstars may face each other down the road, for now, it appears their feud has concluded. AJ Styles has retained the WWE Championship in three matches against Samoa Joe, concluding with the challenger tapping out. It’s likely that the winner of The Miz and Daniel Bryan match that will take place later in Super Show-Down—a contest that guarantees the winner a title shot—will be next on the list to challenge AJ Styles, and many WWE insiders feel that The Miz will be the one to challenge “The Phenomenal” one in the near future.