When AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura was initially booked for WrestleMania, the indie wrestling community rejoiced at the thought of two of the best technical wrestlers in the world stealing the show on the ‘Grandest Stage’. Sadly, that didn’t happen and it hasn’t happened the three times they’ve squared off since with each match failing to reach the desired heights the two reached in NJPW.
Last night’s Smackdown Live gave us the fourth encounter between the two in just over a month, with the winner having the opportunity to choose the stipulation for their fifth match inside a WWE ring at Money in the Bank.
— WWE (@WWE) May 14, 2018
Shinsuke Nakamura picked up the win after pretending to be low-blowed and then hitting the distracted Styles with a reverse exploder followed by a match-ending Kinshasa. This match was a big improvement on recent entries with a hard-hitting and relentless style that was certainly lacking at WrestleMania.
Nakamura’s win now means himself and Styles share a win each with the matches at the Greatest Royal Rumble and at Backlash ending in a double count out and no contest respectively. Hopefully, this means the upcoming match at Money in the Bank will decide a definitive winner of this feud, once and for all… hopefully.
With the matches slowly but surely improving it’ll be interesting to see if AJ vs. Nakamura V will live up to its name and finally deliver a five-star worthy match. Nakamura now has the power to choose the stipulation and with it taking place at a pay-per-view synonymous with ladder matches, having the winner retrieve the belt from above the ring would be a fitting option.