STRONG Champion adds ROH title.
A special Grand Slam edition of AEW Dynamite from New York’s famous Arthur Ashe Stadium on September 20 started in big form, as Eddie Kingston put the NJPW STRONG Openweight Championship on the line in a double title match with Ring of Honor World Champion Claudio Castagnoli.
The bout started with heavy shots before the bout quickly spilled to the floor. Castagnoli had the edge on the outside, but the STRONG Champion would find the knee of the ROH title holder, using a Dragon Screw on the way back into the ring and targeting the base. That offensive mindset would see Castagnoli try to outpower Kingston, but a German suplex would take the Swiss star by surprise, sending him to the apron. New Yorker Kingston would try and push the advantage, but a brutal suplex over the ropes would send Eddie hard onto the entrance ramp.
Now in control, the unforgiving Castagnoli decided to take away the striking power of Kingston, stomping on the right hand and left arm. A European uppercut scored two for the ROH Champ, who showed no mercy with right forearms to the back of Kingston’s head. Insult and injury would be doled in equal measure by Claudio, who showed the disrespect he had for his foe between each move. The STRONG Champion would eventually taste enough, and a combination of suplexes would see Kingston start to work his way back into the bout. Kobashi chops landed in the corner to little effect on Castagnoli, but a right fist dropped the ROH Champion; the match grew uglier when a fist flew right back.
As both men reset, the match continued as it began with strikes exchanged center ring, but a short arm lariat saw Castagnoli in the plus position. After 12-6 elbows, Castagnoli went for the Ricola Bomb, countered with a hurricanrana by Kingston; a second shot at the move saw Kingston kick out to the roar of the crowd in Queens.
Kingston uncorked a trio of backfists and a half Nelson suplex before the Northern Lights Bomb, but this couldn’t end the bout either. One more backfist and a full stack Kawada styled powerbomb brought Kingston the three count and double title glory to the delight of the New York faithful. A years overdue handshake ended the match and the biggest moment of Kingston’s career to date.