The 2019 King of the Ring tournament officially began this week on Monday Night Raw with a pair of opening-round matches — Cesaro vs. Samoa Joe and Cedric Alexander vs. Sami Zayn.
The first match started out fast when Cesaro nailed Joe with a running European Uppercut, but wound up losing when Joe locked in the Coquina Clutch.
Later in the night Alexander made quick work of Zayn, hitting him with a Lombar Check to score a pin.
With the wins, Joe will face the winner of Ricochet vs. Drew McIntyre and Alexander will take on either The Miz or Baron Corbin in the quarterfinals.
Over on the SmackDown side of the bracket, Kevin Owens vs. Elias and Apollo Crews vs. Andrade will take place on SmackDown Live on Tuesday night. Chad Gable, Buddy Murphy, Shelton Benjamin and Ali are also involved in this year's bracket.0comments
The tournament will continue on WWE television throughout the next several weeks, with the winner being crowned at Clash of Champions on Sept. 15. This year marks the first time since 2015 that WWE has held the historic tournament and the fifth time since the King of the Ring pay-per-view was pulled from WWE's annual schedule after 2002.
Previous winners of the tournament include Harley Race, Randy Savage, Ted DiBiase, Bret Hart (twice), Owen Hart, "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, Triple H, Kurt Angle, Edge, Brock Lesnar Booker T, William Regal, Sheamus and Bad New Barrett.