Notes on Sheamus/Gunther from Smackdown

Oct 8, 2022 - by Staff

Friday’s WWE SmackDown on FOX season premiere was headlined by WWE Intercontinental Champion GUNTHER retaining over Sheamus in the rematch from Clash at The Castle.

The finish to the match was surrounded in controversy with WWE saying the leader of Imperium “stole a controversial victory” against the leader of The Brawling Brutes.

The controversy has to do with whether or not GUNTHER tapped out to Sheamus’ Cloverleaf submission, which may have been done to setup Sheamus vs. GUNTHER III for the title.

Towards the end of the match, Sheamus applied the Cloverleaf and while it appeared GUNTHER tapped out at one point, he then reached for the bottom rope and the hold was broken. Sheamus argued with the referee over whether or not GUNTHER tapped. The match continued and GUNTHER ended up retaining.

One narrative going around social media is that Gunther used the “Brazilian Tap,” which is described as, “a light tapping motion that one athlete uses when caught in a submission that’s intended to signal to their opponent that they’ve submitted while also being out of sight of the referee. The goal is to trick the opponent into releasing a submission that otherwise might have actually ended the fight, and immediately continue from there.”

WWE posted a clip of the moment in question, seen below, and asked fans, “Did @Gunther_AUT tap out during tonight’s #ICTitle match? [thinking emoji] You be the judge. #SmackDown.”

GUNTHER replied to the post and wrote, “Obviously, no!”

Sheamus took to Twitter after the match and taunted GUNTHER, and alleged that he himself was the victim of The Worcester Screwjob.

“Guntapper. [clapping hands emoji x 3] #screwjob,” Sheamus wrote.

WWE has not indicated whether or not there will be a third bout between the two heavyweights, but it appears they are keeping the issue alive ahead of tonight’s Old Fashioned Donnybrook Six-Man Match between Imperium and The Brawling Brutes at WWE Extreme Rules.

One Response

  1. Ryan says:

    Stupid observation here, but Sheamus didn’t release the hold before Gunther made it to the ropes, so this entire thing doesn’t even make sense.

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