Recap from TJ Hawke:
This is a MASK vs. MASK match. Thus, this match is a HUGE deal.
Akuma got control after a bit. He started to rip off the mask, but I think he was just trolling him. Akuma went for a coast-to-coast dropkick, but he came up a few inches short. I cackled, because I am an awful human being. Storm came back out of nowhere with a middle rope implant DDT. Akuma came back with a crucifix driver for a nearfall. Storm ate some kicks, but caught one of them and hit an Air Raid Crash. Storm then hit a tope con hello. Back in the ring, Storm hit a Jackhammer for a nearfall. Akuma came back with a springboard swinging DDT. Akuma SWEPT the leg, and Storm fell on his shoulder. Sweeney earlier speculated on commentary that Storm had injured the shoulder. Akuma got a nearfall with a Shining Wizard. Storm got a nearfall with a Falcon Arrow: 1…2…NO! BUT NO ONE KICKS OUT OF THE FALCON ARROW!!?!? Storm reversed a super Yoshi Tonic into a diving Air Raid Crash. Storm had him pinned, but Akuma managed to grab a rope. Bryce had counted to three, and in the confusion, Icarus hit Storm in the balls. The match re-started. Icarus took out Mister ZERO. Akuma hit three consecutive frog splashes: 1…2…NO! Storm came back with a saito suplex. Storm then dropped him on his head with another suplex, but Akuma no-sold it. Akuma drove Storm’s knees into the turnbuck;e and then dropped him on his knees. Storm came right back with a seated dropkick and two straight THAT JAPANESE MOVES: 1…2…3!
Gran Akuma took off his mask after the match. He looked a lot like Gran Akuma.
This match felt like a big deal, and luckily, that helped to carry the match. However, the match had a lot of awkward spots and clunky moments that brought the match down for me. While I have not really seen any Akuma singles matches from this time, I’m inclined to say that Storm is to blame for this match not doing a ton for me. He just does not interest me in the ring at all based on the half dozen matches of his that I’ve seen.
Match Rating: ***