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If Drew Gulak believed a pinfall victory to be the “easy way out” in his last battle with Kushida, then being forced into submission this week had to have been the toughest.

In a clash of venerable mat technicians that could only be won by one Superstar making the other tap out, The Philadelphia Stretcher found himself thwarting the Japanese Sensation’s exhaustive cache of submission holds early. But after evading a cross arm breaker, Gulak went on an innovative offense jaunt. After launching his opponent to the canvas with back-to-back reverse body slams, the Houdini of submission holds stretched out Kushida’s body like elastic with a deltoid-punishing Gory Special.

When a few roundhouse kicks allowed him to break free from the 205 Live staple’s side wristlock, Kushida rocketed around the ring with a flurry of lightning-quick offense. Putting his aerial agility on full display, the former Japanese champion layered Gulak with a step-up enziguri before dropping him with a tornado DDT. From there, the taxing battle turned into a game of one-upmanship as both Superstars traded limb-twisting holds like a hockey puck, including back-to-back ankle lock exchanges.

With a combination of desperation and calculation, Kushida eventually found his opening and seized the moment of opportunity by taking down a battle-weary Gulak and latching onto his left arm with the Hoverboard Lock to score the tap-out victory. Afterward, with no bitterness present, both Superstars extended their hands in a sign of respect, underscoring the valiant effort they put forth in this gridlock throwdown.
Article source: WWE.com

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