Monday, March 30, 2015

REVIEW: CZW Deja Vu 2015 [3/14/15] (

The show opens with Ruckus and Robbie Mireno being inducted into the CZW Hall of Fame.  "BLK OUT" chants as the locker room surrounds the ring.    This could have come later on in the show to sort of calm down the crowd between main event matches, but I'm not booking this thing so why not open with the crowd seeing some familiar faces, right?

Match One: Alexander James (Champion) vs. Greg Excellent (w/ Chrissy Rivera) *CZW Junior Heavyweight Title Match* 

The name Greg Excellent sounds familiar, but I don't think I've ever seen him fight before.    Alexander James is the guy who came out at "To Live is To Die" to cut a promo and was subsequently beat down by Gulak.   He was absent from the last iPPV, so I'm not sure how we got from there to here and Greg Excellent gets a title shot and all that, but I'll just roll with the punches.    Excellent is a big guy but he can move.   He hits a cannonball in the corner ala Kevin Owens to start the match with the advantage.   Excellent tries for a suplex from the ring apron with James inside the ring but he can't get it so he ends up just slamming James into the ring.   James' security guys get involved, as he came out with two of them and they have names but they're kind of like his bodyguards or whatever.   I'm used to seeing the chickenshit heels have one bodyguard but two as sort of security is a nice touch.   And, no, it's not like how Seth Rollins has Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury.     When running down the names of those Alexander James has defeated one of the commentators says "Donovan Dijak... or whatever his name was" and I laughed louder than I probably should have.  Greg Excellent takes his singlet down during the match and is stripped down to only his boots, knee pads and Flash underpants.    I'm having flashbacks of Big Dick Johnson, who is a producer for Lucha Underground now.   James is not impressed with what seems like a comedy spot.   I mean, guys, Blue Meanie wears a shirt for a reason, right?   Remember when Blue Meanie got really ripped?  Or did I dream that?    Greg Excellent puts his singlet back on, thankfully, and ends up outside on the security guys.   Chrissy Rivera hits a nice tornado DDT on Alexander James.   She's a spitfire.     After a body press and near fall, Greg Excellent hits a tigerdriver for the pin and win.    So apparently Alexander James wasn't recognized as the champion before but now Greg Excellent will be?   Does that mean if James won he'd get his props?   And what of Gulak?  Should I just accept that he has moved onto bigger and better things?

Match Two: Conor Claxton vs. Lucky 13 *Conor Claxton's Death Match Trial Series Match*

This came about last month at the "Sixteen" show, but it is worth noting that even though this match was on a show on Pi Day, it was also the day after a Friday the 13th, so you have to enjoy that.    We went from Friday the 13th to Pi Day to the Ides of March to my sister's birthday to St. Patrick's Day.   Wow.  I'm just realizing that now.   That's a lot of days.    Lucky 13 has one long tights leg and one cut at the knee, yet he wears sneakers to make his in ring gear look like something between Zack Ryder (who has switched it up though) and Taka Michinoku.    Where is Danny Havoc?  Shouldn't he be out here watching this match he made?  Conor Claxton's nickname is "Wrench" and as such I shall call him that during the match.    On the outside, Lucky 13 throws Wrench into a chair set up in the corner of the guardrails and that was a pretty bad spot to take.    Lucky 13 sets up some chairs on the outside, which gives Wrench time to recover.    Wrench drops Lucky 13 spine first onto the ring apron.   They battle on the ring apron, above those chairs Lucky 13 set up, and Lucky 13 hits a top rope DDT that sends Wrench mostly to the floor, barely touching one of the chairs and Lucky 13 kind of takes an awkward seat on the other chair.   That was a Lucky 13 move but probably did more damage to him.   Wrench is bleeding and Lucky 13 gets a two count.    As I'm watching this match, I'm wondering whether or not the older CZW fans are mad at all that CZW isn't just seemingly all death matches, as I remember it once being.   Maybe I just watched the death matches though because I remember some sort of high flyers tournament too.   I feel like anything that CZW has done though to tone back the violence has been good because the old cliche is about less being more.    There is a spot where Lucky 13 tries to pick up Claxton's wrench but he can't because only Claxton can.    So we had a Flash reference in the first match and now Thor.   Lucky 13 sends Wrench face first into the pit of thumbtacks.    The commentators note that Wrench will have to go through three matches in total but only if he makes it through this one.   Lucky 13 curbstomps Wrench into those thumbtacks again and this kid might have been smarter to stay down for what turns out to only be a two count.    Wrench comes back and hits a tombstone onto a chair with thumbtacks on it for only a two count.   How that did not kill Lucky 13 I have no idea.   Wrench is rearranging things in the ring which means his next move will backfire.    Lucky 13 flips off the top rope in what the commentators call an Irish Car Bomb and Wrench gets somewhat into the thumbtacks as Lucky 13 ends up sitting in them.    Lucky 13 locks on a double leg submission hold of some kind- maybe a Texas Cloverleaf?- and as Wrench is stomach first in those thumbtacks he has no choice but to tap out.   Wow.    Post match, Danny Havoc does come out and says that he was impressed enough for Wrench to continue and at the next iPPV Wrench will be facing Devon Moore.    Looks like this will go to all three matches then, yeah?

The ring is cleaned up after that match while BLK Jeez is introduced.   BLK Jeez got a haircut.    Jeez says he's been accused of politicking the title and I'm not sure about that because it seems like he has his matches set up fairly.   Matt Tremont comes out and says he wants a shot at the CZW World Heavyweight Championship, which might be a bit premature given he hasn't had his match yet tonight.    Jezz says he can have his shot but he's going to "beat the fuck out of the Bulldozer".   Tremont says that the only person beating the fuck out of anyone is him beating the shit out of BLK Jeez, which Jeez says he likes the sound of and this whole thing just got confusing in a funny way.   Are they beating the fuck or shit out of each other??   Tremont says it's the Year of the Bulldozer and he's on fire (not literally) and when he wins tonight (spoilers!!) he's coming for that title.   So can we assume that if The Bulldozer loses tonight he won't get his title shot and this whole promo will be rendered moot?   If so, this might have been a poor booking decision because it puts it to the point where either a) They just gave away the result of their main event tonight or b) They no longer have a main event for next month after all of that.   Maybe if Tremont loses in the main event we can have a three way dance?

Match Three: Pepper Parks vs. Drew Gulak

Pepper Parks is flying solo and I remember this from the last show and didn't make mention of it, but Parks comes out to that "Radioactive" song by Imagine Dragons and it just bugs me because that was everywhere last year with tween movies and the like.   I want to see Pepper Parks beat up just because of his entrance music.    Gulak is fresh off his loss at EVOLVE 38 six days ago to Chris Hero.     Parks works Gulak over for the start of the match but after a sitdown powerbomb Gulak kicks out at one.    Gulak comes back and the two have some back and forth before Gulak applies a rear naked choke.   A "Go To Sleep" chant briefly.    After some more fighting, Gulak hits his finisher planting Parks on his neck in a bad way and that's good for the three count.  
[Editor's Note: Cage Match dot net has this mistakenly listed as a win for Pepper Parks.   Someone should fix that but I don't have the time to figure out how]

Match Four: Bill Carr vs. Buxx Belmar

Bill Carr comes out first to address where Dan Barry is.   He says he's taking some time off to get addicted to drugs and watch snuff films.    Carr says that CZW wants him to have a new partner and they picked Buxx Belmar.   Dick Justice is with Bill Carr, so why don't they just tag then?   I actually want to see Team Tremendous vs. Young Bucks when the Young Bucks return so I hope Dan Barry does come back for that.   Carr asks Belmar why he should be the new member of Team Tremendous and Buxx just burps into the mic.    Carr then asks him to do something to impress them.   Belmar spits into the air and catches some of it in his mouth.    There is a comedy spot with Buxx and Dick and then Carr says this must end in a wrestling match because apparently he doesn't want to be tag partners with Belmar.   Buxx puts his finger down the back of Carr's pants and then makes Carr smell his own fingers in quite possibly the grossest spot in all of professional wrestling ever.   Bill Carr hits a blackhole slam for a two count.    Belmar goes to the outside and has audience members spit in his hand, even though some do decline.   Belmar then proceeds to eat all that spit as Bill Carr throws up over the top rope and to the outside of the ring.    Belmar has a quick roll up for the pin and win.    CZW has their death matches and they've been known as ultraviolent but they need a new name for this.   Ultragross?   Bill Carr deserves better and he was at both EVOLVE 38 and HOH8 last weekend so I'm not sure what happened to Dan Barry but let's hope Team Tremendous can be reunited sooner than later.    Yuck.    Luckily I was not eating during that one.

Match Five: "Chainsaw" Joe Gacy (Champion) vs. John Silver (w/ Rex Lawless) *CZW Wired TV Title Match* 

As soon as I hear that Deftones song I'm psyched, but then I realize Joe Gacy is coming out and I get even more psyched because I know someone is about to get beat up.    So not only is Dan Barry absent tonight so is Alex Reynolds, the other Beaver Boy.    Gacy takes it to Silver and as Lawless tries to get involved by arguing with the ref he takes a dropkick from Gacy as well.    Outside the ring, Gacy gets chopped on the guardrail but then fires back with a huge kick and chops of his own.   As they get back into the ring, Silver takes control.    Snapmare and running dropkick by Silver as he asks the crowd if they saw that.   Gacy comes back but then is caught on the top rope by Silver.   Silver scores a near fall.    Gacy throws Silver into the first row, as Lawless tries to catch him but it doesn't seem to work.  Silver somehow can get back into the ring but it seems to be only to take more punishment from Gacy.   A springboard backhand stunner gets a two count for Gacy.   The commentators say Gacy is favored to win Best of the Best and he'd be my pick.   Silver somehow fights back and these two men are just leaving it in the ring tonight.    Silver seems like he could defeat Gacy, but the fact that he was in the front row not that long ago makes it seem less likely.   Gacy scores some near falls, as he seems to be struggling to put Silver away now.   Lawless hooks a leg of Gacy which allows Silver a roll up with the tights but it's still only two.   Gacy locks the Rings of Saturn on Silver and Rex Lawless gets on the apron causing Gacy to break the hold.    As Gacy confronts Lawless, Silver tries to hit Gacy from behind but Gacy moves and Silver hits Lawless.   Gacy locks the Rings of Saturn back on and Silver has no choice now but to nod his head "yes" and tap out.    Gacy in the Best of the Best Tournament is my favorite and I still want to see this guy fight Drew Gulak as well as maybe even BLK Jeez in a Champion vs. Champion type of deal because the CZW Wired Championship might be a secondary title in CZW but it might hold more stock right now than the big one.    How much do you love Joe Gacy after that match?   He is on track to becoming my Wrestler of the Year in 2015 without a doubt.   He's just everything you want in a wrestler.   He's Samoa Joe in his prime.    He's just the complete package and it's amazing.

David Starr comes out to tell us he quit CZW three months ago.   Did you know that David Starr is in a tag team with JT Dunn known as Juicy Product and the half of the Beaver Boys missing from the previous match Alex Reynolds, faced JT Dunn at House of Hardcore VIII?   Juicy Product also faced Anthony Nese & Jigsaw just three nights before this at an FWE iPPV.   Starr mentions Tim Donst and tries to put himself over at his expense.    Mike Bailey comes out and gives David Starr a pep talk, saying he just needs to be the best David Starr he can be.    This brings us right into the next match.

Match Six: David Starr vs. Mike Bailey

Bailey is also in the Best of the Best Tournament and the commentators say he is their pick to win, much like they did in the previous match with Joe Gacy.   Only one person can win it all, guys.    Baily hits a huge moonsault to the outside onto Starr.   The commentators then clarify that they might be changing their pick from Gacy to Bailey.   Well, one of them does, but they both talk about it.    Starr begins his comeback and then the two men trade blows.    David Starr works slow with rest holds, trying to keep Bailey grounded and not let him use his speed either,  A "Speedball" chant.   Bailey mounts a comeback but still can't seem to be able to put away Starr.    Bailey continues to come back with a flurry of kicks while Starr tries to fight it off.   Eventually, Bailey hits a twisty-turny knees off the top rope to the side of Starr and it's good enough for the pin and the win.    You know how commentators or people writing about matches must have felt the first time they saw Rey Mysterio in the United States?   That's how I feel watching Mike Bailey.   I can't call this.   He's just fast, high-flying and uses everything he can to his advantage to help him win a match.


Intermission wasn't too long.   I heard "Nobody's Real" by Powerman 5000 and had to go see what destruction one of my cat's was causing in my son's room.   We come right back with the next match and it's cold in this apartment.

Match Seven: Sozio vs. Eric Corvis

This is Sozio facing his former stablemates in The Front who just happened to cost him his spot in the Best of the Best Tournament at "Sixteen".   Sozio starts with a big dive to the outside.   Some back and forth in the ring and then Corvis sends Sozio to the outside to be beaten up by his friends.  (Corvis' friends / Sozio's former friends)  Corvis wrestles in all black and he looks like he got some sort of sale on Kevin Thorne's old ring gear.   Sozio bites the head of Corvis and comes back with a tornado suplex from the top rope to gain control.   This is quite a bit of back and forth.   Sozio flies off of the top rope and hits Corvis with his legs.   Wow.   If he got any higher on that he would have hit the ceiling.   Sozio seems to have the odds working against him, but he pulls a Joe Gacy from earlier in the night and side steps Corvis causing Corvis to hit his own friend.    Sozio and Corvis fight on the top rope again and Sozio is biting him once again as well.    Corvis has his head stomped into the ring and an attempted three count is broken up by someone on the outside pulling the leg of Sozio.    Corvis picks up Sozio onto his back, but Sozio locks on the Tazmission.    Corvis looks to be out but The Front gets up on the apron and distracts the ref.    With one member of The Front arguing with the ref, another comes in and takes out Sozio while putting the probably unconcious Corvis on him so the ref can count the three.    Post match, all four members of The Front beat down Sozio.   Yes, Corvis is back alive.   Two members of The Front hold Sozio while another watches and the fourth whacks him over the head with a chair.   The chair gets wrapped around the head of Sozio for all those worrying about concussions and the such, but that was just a harsh looking move right there.    I'm not sure if Sozio has any friends in CZW but he is definitely going to need some after that.

Match Eight: O!4K (Dave Crist / Jake Crist) (Champions) vs. The Nation of Intoxication (Danny Havoc / Devon Moore) *CZW Tag Team Title Match*

This answers my earlier question as to why Danny Havoc was not out during the earlier match, either watching or on commentary, because he was likely preparing for this.   This match starts right away and one of the commentators says it is tornado rules which means all four men can be in the ring at once.     Moore and Dave Crist trade blows and then Jake Crist pulls Moore outside of the ring.  Havoc and Jake are in the center of the ring.   They shake hands before trading elbows.    Does anyone else have a problem with the apron-like thing Danny Havoc wears?   Havoc sends Dave into the guard rail then hits an Asai Moonsault onto him as well.  Jake hits a DVD onto Havoc back inside the ring.   This is chaotic and all four men are in the ring now.   A double blockbuster takes out both Crist brothers but all four men take a bit to recover.    Havoc chops Dave then whips him into the corner.   Moore hits him in the corner followed by Havoc, so Dave rolls to the outside.   Jake then gets worked over by both members of the NoI.    The challengers seem to be doing a better job of double teaming here.    Jake comes back though and gets himself in the ring with Havoc alone.   Havoc hits a Russian leg sweep that sends Jake's head onto the bottom turnbuckle.   Ouch.   Jake lights Havoc up with kicks as Moore hits a shooting star press on Dave Crist.   Dave kicks out of the SSP pin attempt and in a somewhat odd manner, Jake hits a brainbuster out of nowhere onto Devon Moore for the pin and win.   Jake looks like he might be legitimately hurt here.    Post match, Havoc asks for a rematch and the crowd seems into it so it looks like it will happen one more time.   Danny Havoc is the CZW booker, right?

Match Nine: Matt Tremont vs. Stockade *No Ropes Barbed Wire Match*

Okay, I was wrong about the Hall of Fame part going on first and saying it instead should have been somewhere later in the show.  This card has flowed quite well without it being in between one of these final matches and I almost feel like it might have not been as good if it was saved for later on at some point.   So, yes, perfect placement by CZW and my initials thoughts are proven wrong by time.    The two men begin with a collar and elbow tie up and this one is going to be hard for either man to move the other into those barbed wire strands because each of them is just so big.   Stockade is the first to shake the ropes.   Tremont has to put his hand out to stop from going into them as well.    Stockade hits two dropkicks and each time Tremont teases falling backwards into the barbed wire but doesn't.    Tremont plays to the crowd, allowing Stockade to throw Tremont into the barbed wire ropes.   Stockade uses some of the barbed wire to carve into the head of Tremont.   Tremont is bleeding heavily.   Stockade has a barbed wire bat now and a strand of barbed wire had wrapped itself around the neck of Matt Tremont.    Tremont ends up being able to somehow fight back and he hits Stockade in the back with that barbed wire bat.    Tremont stands on the barbed wire bat on the back of Stockade after running it across the back, adding insult to injury.    Tremont rams the barbed wire bat into the head of Stockade and I'd say both of these men are equally beaten perhaps now.    As Stockade tries to leave the ring he gets stuck in the barbed wire and that might not have been his best choice.  Tremont cuts some of the barbed wire so he can get out, which makes you wonder why Stockade didn't just do that as well.   Must've been in too much of a hurry.   Tremont works Stockade over with a chair.    Someone in the crowd can be heard saying "Kill him, Matt.  Just do it".   These fans are blood-hungry.    Stockade is set up sitting in a chair and Tremont wraps him up in barbed wire.    There is a spool of barbed wire near the ring and Tremont grabs it and makes the CZW staff help him wrap himself up in the barbed wire.    Shades of Sabu.   Tremont flies out of the ring and Stockade gets up, resulting in Tremont eating that chair while wrapped in barbed wire and at a rather fast pace.   He took too much time, people.    Stockade hits a Cactus Jack elbow onto Tremont as both men are still wrapped in barbed wire but Stockade also wrapped up his elbow special for that.   Wow.   More shades of Sabu wrapping is own leg in barbed wire.    Stockade works over Tremont inside the ring, wasting a little time, and he can only get a two count on Tremont though.    Tremont hits a reversal and drops Stockade onto a barbed wire chair for a two count.   Both men seem so tired.     Tremont ends up getting that barbed wire board from outside the ring and he shoves it into the ring.    This might be the piece they need for the finish.    Tremont blasts Stockade in the head with a chair.    Tremont leaves the ring to get a ladder.    Let's hope this does not follow typical wrestling weapon patterns and backfire on Stockade.   The two men trade blows on their knees and Tremont seems to get the better of it as he sets up that ladder next to the barbed wire board in the corner.    Chair across the back of Stockade.    Tremont goes part of the way up the ladder and is then sent back down onto that barbed wire board.    Stockade only somehow gets a two count there.   Stockade blasts Tremont with chairs to the head and Tremont does not go down.   Stockade slams him down onto the chair and it looked like a Michinoku Driver somehow.    Still, Stockade can only get a two count.    Stockade is now setting cinder-blocks up in the middle of the ring and odds are that this will backfire on him.    Stockade goes for a powerbomb but is instead back body dropped by Tremont right onto those cinder-blocks.    Tremont is stuck in the barbed wire now and Stockade slams him onto those cinder-blocks in a spinebuster fashion but Tremont kicks out.    Finally, a DVD onto those cinder-blocks puts Stockade away and Matt Tremont gets the win.    Wow.  I was expecting that to end with the barbed wire board but that was just brutal.    These two men practically killed each other and for fans of the ultraviolent that is most likely going to be your favorite match of the year thus far.    Post match, the arena goes dark.    When the lights come back on, Tremont screams "Where you at?" while the crowd briefly chants "Nick Fucking Gage".   Unless they were chanting for Nick Cage, which would have been pretty awkward.    Tremont says he's waiting for Nicky but nothing seems to come of it... yet.

Overall, this was an interesting show that featured a lot of tag team wrestlers in singles bouts.   Joe Gacy once again proves to be a force to be taken seriously while Gulak does as well.    These are two of my favorites in CZW right now and that doesn't even account for O!4K.   I'd really like to see O!4K vs. reDRagon but realize independent politics might prevent it from happening.    Still, there is to be a whole lot of talent in the Best of the Best Tournament and three other huge matches already signed based on this show so it did a nice job of building up to that for sure.  I just don't feel like this was a filler iPPV either though, as some of these matches are must see (especially the main event, wow, just wow) and it does connect "Sixteen" with "Best of the Best" which is always important.    In that way it does seem more essential because as opposed to being filler or a throwaway iPPV it's closer to a bridge and how many PPVs can you really say that about these days?    A solid show all around that you knew (hoped) would be violent going into it but just delivered by taking violence to new levels.    I was rather surprised when I watched CZW "To Live is To Die" because I thought that maybe CZW had focused more on wrestling and less on the violence for various reason (They'd been doing violence for too long, the times they are a-changing, etc.) but this right here just proved that CZW still knows violence and can innovate like no one else in the year 2015.    The idea of not having these type of matches (which feels racist to say somehow) on every show does seem to make them feel special when they do occur and this was no exception.    You have to understand how much I love Joe Gacy and O!4K and some of these other matches on this show when I say that simply, "Deja Vu" is worth the asking price simply based on the main event.    That isn't to say that the main event is the only match worth watching because it was supported by a stellar undercard that you should be paying even more to see but are essentially getting for free.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

REVIEW: Dragon Gate Champion Gate In Osaka 2015 - Tag 2 [3/1/15]

The show opened with the usual in ring talking, which I can only relate to the card for the night being run down.    There is also an in ring segment with BxB Hulk and Uhaa Nation that appears to be some sort of contract signing for their Open The Dream Gate Title Match later on in the show.  (Well, really later on because it's the main event)

Match One: Dia.HEARTS (Big R Shimizu / Dragon Kid / Kzy / Masaaki Mochizuki) vs. Jimmyz (Genki Horiguchi HAGeeMee / Jimmy Kagetora / Jimmy Kanda / Mr. Kyu Kyu Naoki Tanizaki Toyonaka Dolphin) 

A big eight man tag to open the show would have had me worried at one point in time, but as I'm watching more of Dragon Gate I'm learning more of who each of these men are and as such I'm doing this pretty well now.    Though it is worth noting that I always think of the Dia.HEARTS side as follows: Big R = singlet, Dragon Kid = masked, Kzy = his hair, Mochizuki = by default.    So everyone kind of has their own thing that makes me say "That's him" when I see them coming out for the match... except for Masaaki Mochizuki.    He's just himself by default because he's the fourth (or sometimes third) member of the team and isn't one of the ones I already picked out by some sort of recognition.    Telling apart the Jimmyz is a whole other story.    This was chaotic as you might expect because it had eight men involved in it.    It was a good showcase though of talent in Dragon Gate while reassuring me that everyone in Dragon Gate is part of a faction.    The Jimmyz ended up with the win and oddly enough this was also the first appearance of Kzy since losing his title but it also happens to be the next night so that must be kind of weird, right?  "Hey, I realize you lost your title in a hard fought match last night but now tonight we need you to be part of this eight man tag".  

Match Two: Millenials (El Rindaman / Yosuke Santa Maria) vs. Monster Express (Akira Tozawa / Shingo Takagi)

So here we have a tag team match featuring two of the other factions in Dragon Gate, but still proving my faction theory.    I'm not sure why, but I'm unable to take Yosuke Santa Maria seriously in the ring so I feel badly for anyone partnered with him.   I've been a fan of Shingo since he came over to ROH for a bit and back in the original Dragon Gate watching days of mine (and even the DGUSA days) and in some ways I feel like he should be part of MAD BLANKEY, but none the less you have him teaming up with the guy who just became a champion the night before and you know there is no stopping Akira Tozawa and SHINGO here.    Good match, but really just felt more like a break/reward for Tozawa after his victory the night before.   Do I really think someone said whoever won the match before would be in this sort of only semi-serious tag match and the loser would be part of a much more serious eight man match?   Probably.

Match Three: Jimmyz (Jimmy Susumu / Jimmy Saito) vs. MAD BLANKEY (Mondai Ryu / Naruki Doi) 

Obviously I am a fan of MAD BLANKEY but they could not stop the Jimmyz here as the tension between the rest of the faction and Naruki Doi continues to come to a head.   I feel like MAD BLANKEY needs to just kick Naruki Doi out so they can stop losing, but if they did would Doi either a) be picked up by another faction or b) would he be the only person in Dragon Gate without a faction to call home?   It's worth looking into because I'm not sure whether there is an official Dragon Gate rule about having to be in a faction.

Match Four: MAD BLANKEY (CIMA / Don Fujii / Gamma / Punch Tominaga) vs. Millenials (Kotoka / T-Hawk / U-T / Flamita) 

It is worth noting, since I like to use Cage Match dot net for reference, that Cage Match and other websites have this listed as a six man tag and don't seem to recognize that Punch Tominaga and Flamita are in this match even though they so obviously are.    The opening match was an eight man tag between two of the other factions in Dragon Gate.   Everyone is in an eight man tag match except for Monster Express on this show.   Is this like their Survivor Series or something?   (Well, they're not being eliminated though...)   MAD BLANKEY does win this one in the showcase of all which is going on in Dragon Gate as we have that "everyone is on the card" feel that would be a good way to first be introduced to the promotion and its wrestlers.

Match Five: MAD BLANKEY (Cyber Kong / YAMATO) (Champions) vs. Monster Express (Masato Yoshino / Syachihoko BOY) *Open The Twin Gate Title Match*

This match was most upsetting to me because MAD BLANKEY lost and also lost their titles at the same time.    It furthered the drama between MAD BLANKEY and Naruki Doi for sure, but this match had a lot of behind the ref's back shenanigans.    At one point, with the ref's back turned of course, nearly every member of MAD BLANKEY slid a chair into the ring.   YAMATO set up the chairs for his own personal use but ended up taking the majority of the blow on them, in true weapon-using fashion in professional wrestling.      I'm not completely won over by this Monster Express tag team here, but they're slowly growing on me.   Maybe if they had won the titles by defeating a different team, but I don't know.     I feel like there are five factions in Dragon Gate and this is my ranking of them (based upon how much I like them, not how good or bad they are):

3) Monster Express
4) Jimmyz (if only for their theme song)
5) Millenials

Match Six: BxB Hulk (Champion) vs. Uhaa Nation *Open The Dream Gate Title Match*

The first thing that you probably should know about this match is that this is not for the same title that was defended the night before by Kzy and won by Akira Tozawa.   So you might be asking yourself, if both of these matches are treated as proper main events, which title is the bigger of the two?   The answer is: neither.  I like how they are treated seemingly as equals here and both get a night to headline.   Imagine if WWE had a pay-per-view one month where the WWE Champion was involved in a tag team match or something else and the Intercontinental Title was the main event of the show.   Just goes to show you how seriously they take these things in Dragon Gate.     This was by far the best match I have seen in Dragon Gate thus far and it had mixed emotions with me choosing who would win as I enjoy both men involved.   Now I knew that some time back somewhere it was reported that Uhaa Nation had signed with WWE and so I didn't know when that was happening but could see a scenario where he won the title here and then lost it before he left.   But then at the end of the match, Uhaa Nation gave a heartfelt speech and announced that this was his last Dragon Gate match so that theory was thrown out the window and BxB Hulk was right to retain.   Uhaa Nation has a spot where he does two consecutive standing moonsaults- one backwards facing and one forward facing and he actually missed the second one, which I feel if he hit it could have been the end of the match.    This has to be up there for match of the year candidates with anyone who watches professional wrestling and goes out of their way to see it.   The ring filled with the entire Dragon Gate roster, all filled with tearful goodbyes for Uhaa Nation, who is truly a unique talent I only wish the best for in WWE.

So I didn't know going into this that it would be Uhaa Nation's last Dragon Gate match but I feel like it might have felt sadder (and spoiled the match) had I known, so this is one time where the language barrier worked in my favor.    I could dedicate an entire column to why WWE should push Uhaa Nation to the moon and have their first ever African-American WWE Champion but it's probably a lot of what others have already said.   In a few years, if Finn Balor vs. Uhaa Nation is a main event of a Wrestlemania for the WWE Championship then WWE could really start bringing the best professional wrestling back to their company.   Imagine someone that WWE loves in terms of their look (size) like Batista or Sheamus or, yes, Titus O'Neil.   Now take that guy and give him the moveset of Matt Sydal or Rey Mysterio.   You would probably think that it'd be impossible to do outside of a video game.   But that is exactly what Uhaa Nation is.   He looks the part that WWE wants but boy-oh-boy can he also go in the ring.   With him as a future member of WWE then the future is once again most bright.

REVIEW: AAA Sin Limite - Toluca Febrero 2015 Lucha Libre USA

The show opened by showing the events of the last AAA event I watched/reviewed including that big melee at the end with Myzteziz and the reveal of Electroshock.   

Match One: Mamba / El Apache / Belial  vs. Gotita de Plata / Super Nova / Super Porky

This was what you would expect from the mini's and those who are just shorter.   Though Mamba is a woman so I'm not sure exactly how she got grouped into here instead of fighting with other women.    In the end, Super Porky used his size to his advantage (He might not have been the tallest in the match but he certainly was the widest) and picked up the victory for his team.

We are taken to what appears to be a press conference involving Fenix, Hijo del Fantasma and Angelico.  I thought they were in a match together but the next match would prove that to be false.   They recapped Triplemania XXII.   Fantasma says in plain English (as well as Spanish) "This is my time".   

Match Two: Hell Brothers (Averno / Chessman) vs. Angelico / Jack Evans

It is worth noting that Averno and Chessman had seperate entrances for whatever reason, yet Angelico and Evans came out together.   You'd think the Hell Brothers would be unified, and I do believe I've seen them come out together before so I'm not sure what that was about exactly.    I was also thinking during this match about how Jack Evans used to be in ROH, back in the day, and now they're celebrating thirteen years as a promotion.   Yet I feel like I see Jack Evans more now in AAA than I ever did in ROH.   I kind of wished Jack Evans came back for the 13th Anniversary but maybe they have to wait for a bigger one, like 20th, to bring back all the names from the past.   At one point, Angelico and Evans each had a member of the Hell Brothers down for a pin attempt but they both kicked out.   Has there ever been a time when that has worked for one man and not the other?  I am seriously curious about that.    With both Hell Brothers down in the corner via Angelico, Jack Evans hits a move from the top rope that I think was at least a 720 (but I wasn't counting) and they do the double pin for the win once again.    After the match, Cibernetico comes out and the Hell Brothers beat up Angelico and Evans.   Do they have a team name?  I'd like to use it if they do.    At one point they put them through a table, then as they were inside the broken table the Hell Brothers took turns hitting the table with chairs.   It might have been more of a protective spot but I'm sure the commentators sold it like they were killing Angelico and Evans.

Next up there was a promo for Rey dey Reyes and La Parka had a sword.

A segment is shown where Cibernetico appears to be talking to a shrink.   He recounts the time he formed Hell Brothers and Blue Demon Jr. paid the price for it.   

Match Three: El Mesias vs. La Parka vs. Parka Negra vs. Cibernetico

This match started off well enough, with some good back and forths and everyone taking turns flying to the outside.   But when it broke down, the Hell Brothers came out with Texano Jr., Perro and Taya to attack La Parka on the outside.   It was a six on one advantage for them and they even took off La Parka's boot and used it as a weapon against him.    Ultimately, they dragged La Parka up the ramp and took him away as El Mesias was left in the ring with Parka Negra.    So that basically took La Parka out of the match, sure, but Cibernetico also effectively took himself out of the match.   I read after watching it that the pair was counted out but still the fact remains that those five rudos could have easily taken out La Parka and left Cibernetico in the ring to potentially win the match.   I'm trying to see this as a situation where Cibernetico is willing to sacrifice whatever it takes to get what he wants or a "If I can't have it then you can't either" deal, but it just makes him look foolish when he has the numbers on his side and could have used them without having to sacrifice anything.     El Mesias eventually hit a big splash from the top rope onto Parka Negra for the win.    Parka Negra did have a cool spot in the match though where he came off the top rope and grabbed Mesias' head and rammed his knees into his face.   I'm surprised I haven't seen that done more seeing as how everyone is all about the knees these days.   

As I read about this match afterwards as well it was presented to me that El Mesias is now in the finals of the Rey de Reyes tournament with Aerostar, who won the match last time with all that insanity.   So this kind of makes Cibernetico look even crazier because he's not just giving up a match but perhaps something more.

The show closed with a promo from Brian Cage, who goes simply by Cage in Lucha Underground and has also appeared in PWG.   He spoke in English with Spanish subtitles.    He basically calls out Alberto El Patron, saying they were in developmental together and El Patron was stupid to slap an employee and he deserved to be fired.      Cage says he's coming for El Patron and I'm so excited I could... No, wait, I'm really not that excited.  

This is the end of Part 1 on YouTube.

Part 2 opened up with highlights and then Konnan and Cibernetico exchanged words in a locker room area.

Match Four: Mini Psycho Clown / Mini Charly Manson / Mini Abismo Negro vs. Mini Drago / Octagoncito / Mascarita Sagrada

I was not aware that there existed a Mini Drago but that is kind of cool.   I also found myself wondering during this match how the names were chosen in terms of him being "Octagoncito" instead of "Mini Octagon" or why not "Dragocito" instead of "Mini Drago".  Does that make sense?   Mascarita Sagrada took a huge dive off the top rope here but landed on his head/neck area roughly.   He was taken away by paramedics and so I assume if his injury wasn't legit this is the reason why he was written off of Lucha Underground for the time being via The Crew.   Otherwise, what you would expect from a six person mini's match.   Psycho Clown pins Mini Drago for the win and I can't help but wanting to see Psycho Clown vs. Drago now.

Match Five: Super Fly / Joe Lider / Taya vs. Bengala / Drago / Faby Apache

Speaking of Drago.   Another trios match here and this one has two men and one woman on each side.   I really don't mind having mixed tag matches or mixed trios matches it's just the man vs. woman thing they had going on in early Lucha Underground that bothered me.   Taya is the AAA version of a Woman's Champion and I really wish she was in Lucha Underground instead of Sexy Star.   Joe Lider has two title belts and he wears one of them around his waist backwards while he wrestles.    There were good triple teams by both sides and Taya hit a huge plancha to the outside at one point.   Super Fly pinned Faby Apache for the win and since it is his music we get to hear Marilyn Manson once more.

At this point in time, they replayed the four way match that saw El Mesias qualify for the Rey de Reyes finals.    I could understand if this was from a time longer ago but it was from the first part of this same show, which has simply been divided into two when posted on YouTube.   Imagine if WWE started showing a match from the beginning of the show again later on in the show in almost its entirety during their three hour long Raws.   Actually, I hope I'm not giving them ideas.

Match Six: Hijo del Fantasma / Hijo del Perro Aguayo / Pentagon Jr. vs. Myzteziz / Psycho Clown / Fenix

So aside from the replay of the El Mesias win there have been a total of three matches in Part 2 and they have all been trios matches.   Whatever.    This match was full of talent as it had six of the most talented luchadores in the entire world in it.   As one would expect this broke down into just an all out brawl.   Fantasma, Perro and Pentagon Jr. make for a great rudo team and all, but can it really get any better than Myzteziz, Psycho Clown and Fenix?   There are very few men I would want to represent AAA in some sort of universal trios tournament than those three.   (I *might* be willing to substitute Psycho Clown with Alberto El Patron and *maybe* Fenix with Drago but those are only if there are injuries or something, but yeah, these feel like the top three luchadores on the AAA roster for sure)    Naturally, the good guys win and the bad guys lose (as the newest Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theme song reminds us of) so a nice end to this portion of Lucha Libre AAA Sin Limite.  
A promo in English once again for Brian Cage, who will not be likely facing an injured Alberto El Patron tonight, and one last promo for Rey de Reyes as well.

REVIEW: World Wrestling Council WWC Puerto Rico TV 1/25/15

Special thanks to NAWR for helping me with the names and such as I don't understand Spanish.

We open with highlights of what's to come, that nice intro video and of course self-promotion before going into the first match.

Match One: Angel Fashion / David Montes vs. Angel Cotto / Rikochet

This match was seemingly joined in progress.   Rikochet is not the same as "Ricochet" who is now in Lucha Underground as Prince Puma, though he is masked.    Cotto has short hair with trunks on and he reminds me of when Billy Kidman cut his hair in his final WWE years.    I thought when this match first came on that the team of Fashion and Montes were Sons of Samoa because of their look but the commentators proved me wrong.    Angel Fashion pinned Angel Cotto for the win here with a plancha off of the top rope.   It wasn't a particularly bad or good match but I'm not really won over by any of these guys here either.   I think it mainly just served the purpose of showing me a Rikochet who I've never seen before.

After more self-promoting we go into a classic WWC match because apparently WWC doesn't have enough of their own current matches to show.   Of course I'm kidding, as WWC has a rich history and so seeing this match is a treat for the viewers.     The match appears to be in a baseball stadium and I just wish someone out there would take all of the old WWC footage with Abdullah the Butcher, Bruiser Brody, Carlos Colon and the like and put it out on DVD.    A year-by-year type of boxed set would be most excellent.  

More self-promotion for an event I'm not quite sure whether it happened or not yet.

Match Two: Carlito (Champion) vs. The Mighty Ursus *WWC Universal Championship Ring of Fire Match* 

The ring has little spots of fire all around it, on the ring apron and spots on the ropes are burning as well.    This is a lot cooler looking than anything I've ever seen done with fire before in matches and it seems like it'd be about as likely to touch the fire as it would be to touch barbed wire in a barbed wire rope match.    Though as I'm busy typing that, Ursus puts Carlito onto a spot on the ropes face first where there is no fire.    But I'm saying, you can't run the ropes in this match.     Carlito looks good here and it makes me sad for his House of Hardcore VIII match as clearly Carlito is ready to be the face of a wrestling promotion.   The fact that even TNA or ROH isn't using him says something, but it might be more that he just wants to stay in Puerto Rico and I can respect that.    I've always been a big fan of Carlito and so having him here in WWC makes WWC a promotion that is on my radar and not just for its rich history.     They cut to a promo from Superstar Ash about his upcoming match right in the middle of the match here.   Still better than any commercial break WWE has done.    There was also an odd commercial for a band that dresses up as costumed animals, like something you'd see out of Chuck E. Cheese.    The fire seems to be going out a lot as the match progresses and The Mighty Ursus is a big guy but Carlito manages to get the best of him for the pin and win.   If I was someone who didn't like Carlito (and I assume he is a technico in WWC) then I would most certainly want to see some of his hair burned off in that match.    The fact that the fire was there though seemed to be more of a way to keep outside interference from happening and less of "someone is going to get set on fire tonight!" factor.    It was a decent match but not the type of intensity and even time spent you might expect from it being for a championship and there being fire involved.  

Highlights of Ricardo Rodriguez's in ring career are shown and at times the outfit he wears makes him look like Super Crazy.     Ricardo Rodriguez also has a sit down promo with three ladies, a flag and apparently he is also the champion of something.  

I'm getting a bit more used to WWC on their second episode than I was on their first but it's just because I'm used to the flow on the show now and also I recognize Carlito from his WWE days and as such this seemed like a much more familiar show to me than the first episode I reviewed.    Still, two matches per show isn't that bad but the time they give them could be longer.    If they left that classic match off of this show, for example, then they could have given that title/ring of fire match a bit longer to go and that could have told a much better story.   But I do believe WWC still runs big shows and this might have just not been one of the big ones (Where the matches were taped from, that is to say) and as such I might have to watch something closer to a PPV to see longer matches, which is fine.

I also plan on not covering as much of the self promotion in the upcoming reviews as it seems somewhat silly to simply type the same things over and over again as they promote upcoming matches.    I'm reviewing these after they happen not as they air live and if you're not in Puerto Rico it also seems somewhat moot so I'll leave that out next time as well and just stick with the action that will most likely be limited to two matches.

Friday, March 13, 2015

REVIEW: FWE XIX: Hennigan vs. Styles [3/11/15] [ iPPV]

This was my first time watching anything related to FWE but when I read about an AJ Styles vs. John Hennigan two out of three falls main event I could not resist.

We open with some guy in the ring introducing one of the commentators who apparently used to be an in ring performer but had to retire.   Yeah, I can already tell you I'm not going to care about these commentators.   There is a basketball hoop behind the guy in the ring though and I find that to be interesting.    Not the biggest venue, but it has more rows than that Union Get the Glory tournament.  

Match One: Johnny Gargano vs. Bandido Jr.

Gargano gets a "Johnny Wrestling" chant.   As much as I've heard about Johnny Gargano I have never actually seen him wrestle as part of a full show, but rather just pulled matches and match highlights here and there for him.    There is a wrestling promotion that books shows in Connecticut and they have Bandido Jr. on their cards usually, so that's as much as I know about him.   Bandido Jr. says "Eddie Wrestling" and he might have been introduced here as "Eddie Bandido Jr." for all I know.   The crowd starts a "Fuck 'em up, Johnny, fuck 'em up" chant and I guess the "F" in FWE does not stand for family.   Bandido Jr. hit a huge outside dive and as his luchadore name suggests he is a high flyer.    Gargano pulls Bandido Jr. out of the corner for a backcracker and this is the ring technician versus the high flyer, the proverbial Taz vs. Sabu match up if you will.   Gargano stretches Bandido Jr. with an armbar that also has his legs wrapped around his body, torquing that neck.   Bandido Jr. manages to get the leg off the back of his head and fight out of the armbar to break the hold.   That was something I've never seen before and I did think it was the end, as I didn't know how he'd get out of it.    Gargano looks like he's going for a big move and ends up simply applying a chinlock for a "That Was Awesome" chant.    That allows both wrestlers the time to rest.   Bandido comes back with some clotheslines and then a dropkick from the top.    Gargano has some moves reversed and then so does Bandido Jr. but neither man can put the other away.    The two begin trading blows, which leads to superkicks.    Gargano dumps Bandido Jr. outside and hits a suicide dive on him.   The commentator says something about this being a good start to the action on a Wednesday night, and yes, it is odd this is on a Wednesday.    You know what night of the week never has any wrestling on?  Tuesday.    Gargano hits a running long dart right into the second rope.   Gargano then has Bandido Jr. up in an electric chair, then twists him over and plants him face first on the mat for a three count.   That was a nice move I've never seen before and I'm excited for Gargano vs. Galloway.     Bandido Jr. also looked good here.    The commentators said that could have been the main event and I have to agree.   That was a most excellent match.  

Match Two: Wes Draven / Mike Law / Jorge Santi vs. Ben Ortiz / Kai Katana / Van Shields

Ben Ortiz is dressed like Bam Bam Bigelow and is billed as "The Beast".   All six of these men are different and so it will be interesting to see them fight.   Kai Katana is doing the Great Kabuki thing that makes every Japanese wrestler blush.   Katana has half of his face painted while Wes Draven has half of his face painted as well.   Santi, the biggest man on his team, starts things off with Shields who is of decent size but has just a generic indy wrestler look to him.   Mike Law is tagged in and this guy is built like Harvey Whippleman.    Draven comes in and so does Katana.    It's a battle of the painted faces.    So Wes Draven wrestles in Hayabusa/Sabu pants and he also has this vest type shirt I thought was ring gear but he's wearing that still.   My advice to Wes Draven: Wearing more clothes when you wrestle doesn't make you look bigger.   Standing next to Mike Law makes you look big!   Ortiz is in against Mike Law and it doesn't even begin to feel like when Bam Bam Bigelow threw Little Spike Dudley into the crowd at ECW.    The commentator who isn't a former wrestler says Ben Ortiz is from House of Hardcore and is a student of Tommy Dreamer so he might have been on that iPPV I'm trying to block out of my mind.   I'm not going back to check it though.    There is a lot of action in this match and high flying moves by Draven and Santi onto everyone on the outside.    The non-wrestler commentator says they all have the Bandido syndrome because they're not afraid to kill themselves... Mike Awesome is sad by this.    Oh, the commentator just says he does commentary for HoH too.   Try and live down that last show then, son!!    Back in the ring, the three faces (I guess?) work over Mike Law in their corner.    By the way, AJ Styles came out for guest commentary but his mic is set at a much lower level than the other two and I can barely hear a word he's saying.   It's like the other two are set to ten and AJ Styles' mic is down at three.   Sometimes, when the commentator says "Van Shields" it sounds like he's saying "Sam Shields", but I'm going with what Cage Match dot net tells me for the official names and all that.    Ben Ortiz hits a double powerbomb which is part of a superplex and the commentators blow out their mics screaming after that one.   Following a frogsplash by Katana onto Mike Law this match is over via pinfall.   It was chaotic but still somewhat fun.   I was trying to find out via the FWE official website if it was "Sam" or "Van" Shields but all I found out was that the commentator who used to be a wrestler is named EJ Risk and he used to be in a tag team with VSK.   Mike Law was also beat down after the match... by who, I am not sure.

Match Three: Orange Cassidy vs. VSK

Orange Cassidy also fights in that CT based promotion, which is called Northeast Wrestling, that Bandido Jr. does.    EJ Risk gets up at the commentary booth and says he made VSK to his face.    Cassidy has ripped jeans on and apparently that is how he wrestles.    There is a "Tropicana" chant directed at Orange Cassidy and I thought they were saying "Colt Cabana".    A lot of the match was just chants about VSK's hair and things based on oranges for Cassidy.    This match is slow and boring, but I'm using the time to find out who attacked Mike Law after that last match.    Well, nothing is helping me to figure it out so if I can't find out by the end of this show (as if to say he doesn't appear later on in the card) then I will just leave it as a mystery.     This match came to an end when EJ Risk, who is supposed to be a commentator and retired from the ring, got up on the apron to argue with his former tag team partner VSK.   The distraction allowed Cassidy to spit orange juice in the face of VSK and pin him with a roll up.   A cheap victory in an otherwise lousy match which seemed to be a way to further a feud between former tag team partners.   I'm beginning to feel like the retirement of EJ Risk is a work.    I'm also beginning to feel like the name EJ Risk is stupid.

Match Four: Robbie E vs. Chuck Taylor

Robbie E is out first and I remember seeing him in his early days with Matt Striker.   Whatever happened to Matt Stryker??   I think Robbie E can go in the ring I just don't like his gimmick in TNA.    Chuck Taylor is everywhere so far this year, is he not?  I think out of all of the wrestling shows I've watched in 2015 the only one who might have been in as many different promotions as Chuck Taylor is the Young Bucks.    Robbie E starts screaming like a girl.   Come on, Robbie, you're better than that.   Taylor misses a cross body as he came up short and it didn't look like he was ever going to hit it.    Robbie E gets on the mic and asks if this is supposed to be a joke, bro.    Robbie E says something about this not being elementary school and he gets chants of "Boring" and "Shut the Fuck Up".     How is this supposed to be good?   We have two talented wrestlers in the ring and instead of letting them go, they're going to be involved in... a foot race?    Robbie E runs around the gym while Chuck Taylor just hides at ring side and jumps into the ring right before Robbie can.     That was a complete and utter waste of time.    Why are we paying money to watch this, FWE?   Taylor deserves better and we know Taylor is capable of so much more, so what exactly is going on here?   Chuck Taylor gets the eventual win and the commentators act surprised.   Have they ever seen Chuck Taylor before?   The guy is good, this promotion is beginning to look like the joke.  

Match Five:  The Juicy Product (David Starr / JT Dunn) vs. Anthony Nese / Jigsaw

For whatever reason, JT Dunn was at HOH8 without David Starr.   Juicy Product has been in CZW, Full Impact Pro and other promotions previously though.    I do remember Jigsaw from when I used to be a fan back in the day, back when I was more heavily involved in professional wrestling than I am now, and of course Anthony Nese was on HOH8 as well as having an amazing match with Davey Richards at EVOLVE 38.    The guy who attacked Mike Law before looked like JT Dunn only he had a bigger beard and red in the back of his hair.    I'll have to go back and check the audio better.   (Most of the audio in the beginning of this show wasn't too good)    Some chants for Juicy Product.    At one point, Jigsaw hits an over the top rope double foot stomp onto Starr followed by a springboard moonsault by Nese.   It was a nice tag team combination in a match that has been hard hitting and full of action.   To perhaps show my age and when I was into wrestling the most before, I'm used to Jigsaw being in pants and here he is wrestling in trunks.    Starr was worked over for a while, but Juicy Product eventually got control back and worked over Nese.    The fact that Anthony Nese was at HOH8 on Saturday, EVOLVE 38 on Sunday and is now here on Wednesday just goes to show you what a professional he is because that match on Sunday should have given him at least a week off not just a couple of nights.    Jigsaw comes in hot with elbows and chops, then hits a brainbuster on Starr.   Only a two count as Dunn makes the save.    Starr pulls Jigsaw to the outside and JT Dunn pulls off a high risk move to the outside that might have taken him out of the match.    Double team move by Jigsaw and Nese but it's not good for three.   The commentators both point out how amazing this show has been thus far and let me just say that if you have to point it out like that I have to question who it is that you're trying to convince.   With Jigsaw on the guard rail outside, JT Dunn hits a double stomp on him from inside the ring.    That was crazy.     Nese hits a double stomp on Starr, a tornado DDT on Dunn and Jigsaw gets another double stomp for a near fall.   The crowd chants "This is Wrestling" because, you know, you might have thought you were at the ballet.    JT Dunn is finally able to get the three on Nese before Jigsaw can make the save.    That was a really solid tag team match and the commentators keep talking about it being Wednesday but NXT and Lucha Underground are both on Wednesdays already.   Why not go to Tuesday?   Nothing is on Tuesday.

Vincent Theurer.

Match Six: Deonna Purrazzo(w/ DG Haven) vs. Shelly Martinez

Before the match, Robbie E is announced as joining the commentary table and I shall now watch the rest of this show on mute.   No, I'm not kidding.    Martinez has her face painted and is dressed in next to nothing.    She, of course, was a vampire in WWE and part of LAX in TNA.   Hard to tell if she looks good or not under all that makeup.    Martinez poses and there is little wrestling going on so far.     It is noted by the commentators that Deonna has been in TNA as well as a Rosebud in WWE.   Really, who hasn't been a Rosebud though?   Deonna gets in control at one point and just begins hitting Martinez hard.     Martinez fights back and hits a cross body for a two count.    Following a leg sweep into choke slam type of combination, Shelly Martinez gets the pin and win.   She can wrestle, no doubt, and Deonna had a pretty decent showing herself as she had some hard hits in there.   As Deonna is leaving with DG Haven, Martinez spits on them from inside the ring and I'm having Montreal Screwjob flashbacks.    Despite what the commentators were hoping for, there were no nipples slipped here tonight.

An announcement is made of someone who is getting their car towed.    The crowd does not care and neither do I.  

Match Seven: Chris Hero vs. Tommy Dreamer

Chris Hero comes out to his own theme and he just competed against Drew Gulak, of course, a few short nights ago so it is strange to see him back already.   I've been a Tommy Dreamer fan for a long time, something like twenty years, but after watching House of Hardcore VIII (or perhaps suffering through it is more accurate) I want to see Tommy Dreamer get KTFO by Chris Hero here.    This is Chris Hero's debut in FWE and I always wonder whether or not Hero would be welcome back in WWE one day or perhaps more importantly if he'd be open to going back.    After the ref does a kip up, the crowd chants "one more time" and Dreamer does a kip up with the help of the ref and Hero.    That was a bit we could have done without.   Dueling chants for Hero and Dreamer.   This match is starting slowly, but it is methodical in that sense and that comedy spot took them out of it so it wasn't needed but they're getting back into it now.   Rolling senton by Hero for a one count.    On a side note: I found out who attacked Mike Law (finally) and will post about it at the end of the show with a link of how I found out.    Chris Hero takes a break to tie his boot.   This has nowhere near the same intensity as Hero-Gulak.  Someone threw some trash in the ring and it appeared as if Dreamer verbally scolded them.    Maybe they also just thought HOH8 was garbage?   Hero was messing with his boot, the lace was untied and maybe he was faking an injury, but this just lead to him planting his other boot into the face of Dreamer as Tommy came to check on him.   Hero begins taking it to Dreamer and with every blow Dreamer takes I think about every mistake HOH8 made and how it is worth it.    They trade blows on the outside.   Hero rolls back in to avoid the count out and Dreamer could be knocked out.     Dreamer finally sits up and starts yelling at Hero in that "Is that all you've got?" way.    Chris Hero was not a part of HOH8 on Saturday night so I'm sure he's glad he wasn't, but if he did watch it then I'm sure he's beating up Tommy Dreamer for all of the rest of us who also did.    Chris Hero misses a top rope moonsault and the match is seemingly reset here as the ref begins his ten count.   Back on their feet, the two men begin trading blows.    Following a clothesline, Dreamer seems to have gained some control.    As he winds up for a big move though, Hero hits him.   Good back and forth now between these two men.    Dreamer hits a clothesline but Hero is up first and then hits a roaring elbow for a two count.    It is noted by the commentators that Chris Hero has taken the chair of Noelle Foley now and she is the daughter of Mick Foley but also- I believe- training to be a wrestler.   She also does videos for Ringside Collectibles if you want to go to and see them for yourself.    Hero hits a rolling senton onto chairs which were on top of Dreamer but it's only good for two.    Apparently there are no disqualifications here.     Hero sets up some chairs in the corner and of course that leads to the reversal because whoever spends all the time setting them up usually ends up getting put through them.    Dreamer still only gets a count of two.    Backslide by Dreamer for another two.    Dreamer rams Hero head first into the corner where a chair is set up and then hits him with a piledriver for the pin and the win.    This could have been a better match somehow but it was all right for what it was.   It had that early 2000's WWE feel to it though because it was a lot of Tommy Dreamer getting beat up for the majority of it only to come back with a few quick moves for the win.   I felt it was evenly matched at one point, but Hero did a lot more damage and Dreamer came back with seemingly minimal effort to win it.   Dreamer shakes the hand of Hero after the match and I must urge Chris Hero to not go work for HoH.    Post match, Dreamer gets on the mic and puts over Chris Hero.  Oh, sure, but he couldn't put him over with the pin after being beaten down so badly, huh?   Dreamer says HoH, PWG and FWE.   Apparently PWG also has shows here.    Chris Hero gets on the mic and drops an f-bomb.   He says they love pro wrestling and so do I.   Tommy Dreamer says he loves Daniel Bryan but he wants them to change the "Yes!" chant to include an f-bomb in it.   If this was 1999 this might have worked.   Dreamer says to say that during Raw on Monday night whenever you don't like what's happening.   What has Dreamer started??   Okay, maybe nothing, but still... the thought of it is amusing.

Match Eight: The Young Bucks (Champions) vs. The Colony (Fire Ant / Silver Ant) *FWE Tag Team Title Match*

Always fun to see The Colony, but there are a lot of Young Bucks chants right away.   I'm hoping maybe they can do something to impress me against The Colony that I haven't seen them do before.    Still, The Colony is a better choice for them to face than a makeshift tag team, which of course takes us back to HOH8 but I'll get past that for now.    This should be good if only for The Colony.    A "Bullet Club" chant and once again I believe people just like the Young Bucks because they are in that particular faction which has gotten over like the nWo version of Japan.    There is a "Fuck the Trademarks" chant, as WWE has recently filed trademark for the "Too Sweet" deal from the nWo days which the Young Bucks do, so there's that.    Young Bucks say they are not going to stop doing the "Too Sweet" thing because they're stuck in the 1990's so we'll see how that plays out for them legally.   I wish the commentators would stop saying Wednesday but I never watch anything in real time anyway so whatevs.   The Colony hit a double suicide dive, shove the Young Bucks back into the ring and then the Bucks hit their own pair of suicide dives.   If someone shows this footage to Vince McMahon I don't know whether or not he'd sue but he will definitely have a good cry I'd imagine.   Young Bucks do a lot of clowning, gyrating in the middle of the ring while saying "suck it" and that allows The Colony to take control.     After some superkicks and moves the commentators note could be from video games, the Young Bucks are back in control.    Does it bother anyone else that the Young Bucks have to hit a thousand superkicks within one match?   Does anyone else remember when one perfectly executed superkick could win a match?   Shawn Michaels remembers.    Fire Ant dumps Matt Jackson to the outside and I only know he's Matt per the commentators.   Silver Ant comes into the match with a missile dropkick.   All tag team matches involving the Young Bucks should just be tornado tag team rules because it's just too much action to try and keep track of (and yes, that was kind of a compliment to the Young Bucks)   Fire Ant hits a huge move to the outside onto both of his opponents.   Matt Jackson appeared to be going to the top rope to hit Fire Ant inside the ring but instead hit a moonsault outside of the ring onto Silver Ant.   One Young Buck powerbombs Silver Ant into the corner as the other YB superkicks him in the back of the head.  Ouch.   Then The Colony come back with double team moves of their own.   Silver Ant puts one of the YB in a Texas cloverleaf.   The other YB comes in to break it up but Silver Ant doesn't care.   Silver Ant rolls him over into an ankle lock and Fire Ant puts the other YB in an ankle lock as well.   Both YB roll through and superkick The Colony to the outside.     With Silver Ant back in the ring, the YB hit their finisher called the Melterdriver (is that right?) that I think I've seen before but it's basically a spike piledriver as one Jackson comes flying over the rope and flips into the spike (so the YB flips, not the guy taking the move) and that's the end of the match.     Post match, the Young Bucks get on the mic.   Nick Jackson says, "WWE, sue this, brothers!!" and then Matt backs it up by saying they'll have to cut their hands off.   Challenge accepted!    A good match between these two.    Better than their match against reDRagon at the ROH 13th Anniversary show, yet still not quite as good as their match against O!4K at CZW 16.

Match Nine: Joey Ryan / Candice LeRae vs. Paul London / Veda Scott *FWE Tri-Borough Title / FWE Women's Title Tag Team Match*

So both titles are on the line here and Candice LeRae is the Women's Champion while Paul London holds the Tri-Borough Title.    I like to think of the Tri-Borough Title as being like the WWE IC Title and I'll even call it the TB Title.   I've never seen Veda Scott fight, only as an annoying mouth piece for Moose in ROH, but Paul London is one of my all-time favorites.   London wears a red jumpsuit ala Duke "The Dumpster" Drose and he makes his way to the ring through the crowd which seems to take A LOT of time.    Ryan and LeRae (aka "The World's Cutest Tag Team") are napping in the ring.   Funny.  I need to watch some of their matches in PWG now.    Joey Ryan of course part of TNA for a short feud with Al Snow for no real reason and Paul London was in WWE as a former tag team champion.    Well, now that they're finally in the ring Paul London is taking off his jumpsuit not ala Duke Drose.   London is wearing blue and red trunks as he did in his early ROH days and yet he has sneakers on instead of boots.   Interesting.    As they explain the title situation, they're basically saying that if Veda Scott gets pinned Paul London could lose his TB Title.   Seems like Joey Ryan has more to gain in this match than Paul London, no?    Joey Ryan gives his lollipop to some girl in the crowd as they chant "You've got herpes!".    He couldn't have done that during Paul London's long ass entrance?   We finally start with Joey Ryan and Veda Scott proving Paul London does not have to be pinned to lose his tuberculosis title.   Veda fakes a suicide dive onto Joey Ryan but then hits him with a baseball slide dropkick.   Veda uses the guardrail to do the Undertaker-walking-the-top-rope spot on Ryan.   Robbie E wonders why Veda Scott wears a skit over her trunks and I wonder why Robbie E has a selfie stick and horrible gimmick in TNA.    London and Candice are in the ring now.    I'll call the women by their first names because it's easier.   London hits an atomic drop on Candice.   She fights back with some forearm chops, no stranger to competing against men in the ring.   Now it's finally Joey Ryan and Paul London in the ring together.     I just checked the PWG website and their newest DVD which is up for pre-order does not have The World's Cutest Tag Team on the card.   Bummer.   Still looks like a good card and as their first DVD of 2015 I might need to check that one out.    Ryan puts Candice up in a fireman's carry and uses her feet to knock down Veda.   Candice hits a suicide dive to the outside on London while Ryan gets a two count on Veda.    London hits a double stomp from the top rope onto the back of Joey Ryan and then Candice hits the ballsplex on London.    There is a "Cutest Tag Team" chant.    Another series of moves and Ryan still can't pin Veda Scott.    Ryan has Candice up again in the fireman's carry but London hits him with a dropkick, taking Candice out with a Samoan drop by her own partner.   Veda hits a backslide on Candice for the pin and the win.   Wow.   Veda Scott did next to nothing in this match and yet she wins a title.    At least Paul London didn't lose his title by Joey Ryan pinning Veda Scott.    This match still left something to be desired.    If you do matches out of five stars this is an easy two at best.    With the main event match next though this makes sense as a sort of breather between that tag team title match and then the potentially biggest match on the show.     I forgot that this could have just been filler as I was used to the EVOLVE way of doing things (Each match better than the last) but there is no way that was better than the previous match.

Match Ten: John Hennigan (Champion) vs. AJ Styles *FWE Heavyweight Title Best Two Out of Three Falls Match*

AJ Styles is out first and while it is noted on commentary that he is the current IWGP Champion (still) he does not have the belt with him.   I was wondering if he still had the title but assumed he did.   I do think it is odd he's not wearing it, but are the Young Bucks still IWGP Tag Team Champions?   They didn't have those belts with them either, so who knows.   Dueling chants of "AJ Styles" and "Bullet Club" but I know why AJ Styles is a star even without the Bullet Club.     As John Hennigan makes his way to the ring, the commentator says this could be a Wrestlemania main event.   Based on this year's Wrestlemania card/build, Gargano-Bandido would have been a better main event.   But I get where he's going with this being a battle between two of the best stars from TNA and WWE respectively and yet they both are tearing it up still, AJ Styles in New Japan and ROH as well as John Hennigan in Lucha Underground.    A "Fuck TNA" chant and, yes, Robbie E is still on commentary.   Can we discuss why Robbie E is still employed by TNA and AJ Styles isn't??  Dueling chants for "AJ Styles" and "Johnny Mundo".   Robbie E asks who Johnny Mundo is.   Maybe if Robbie E watched Lucha Underground he'd want to go there and leave TNA.   Come on, your buddy Striker is there.   The FWE commentator wonders what John thinks of the name "Johnny Mundo" but I can tell you it is nowhere near as bad as EJ Risk.     He then calls this a dream match and I am inclined to agree.   It's like Japan vs. Mexico in some weird way even though neither of these guys is Japanese nor Mexican.    Hennigan works Styles over at the commentary table at one point and I was waiting for Styles to confront Robbie E but it is for a later time I suppose.    It is also pointed out that this is the first time these two men have met and that's kind of odd but cool.   Hennigan tries to work the faster paced, high flying style match and AJ Styles is trying to slow it down with the Japanese strong style.    Hennigan hits Starship Pain and scores a three count for the first fall.    Hennigan leads 1-0.    AJ Styles rolls to the outside for a breather so the ref has begun counting him out.    Hennigan gets caught in the leg and sells an injury as Styles locks on a submission hold.   Hennigan has no choice but to tap and this is now tied at 1-1.   That was a quick comeback for AJ Styles, but Hennigan had to tap there or risk further injury since this match is two out of three.    Hennigan knew that wasn't going to lose him the title so that was a smart move to save further damage.   Hennigan takes a breather but then comes back into the ring.   Styles works over the leg of Hennigan again but Hennigan applies a headlock as well.    Hennigan hits a nice neckbreaker for barely a one count.    Hennigan hits Styles with some stiff shots but cannot get past that one count.   The FWE commentator says if you take away Styles' ability to fly you take away half his offense and I think he needs to watch some NJPW.   Styles works back with an elbow drop onto a fallen Hennigan.   Styles is bleeding from the nose.    Styles suplexes Hennigan into the turnbuckles for a two count.   With Styles on the apron and Hennigan inside the ring, Styles went for a springboard something but while he was on the top rope Hennigan knocked him to the outside.   That looked like it really hurt.   Hennigan barely has the strength to pull himself over the top rope with a running start and land on Styles outside.    The two trade clotheslines and both men seem exhausted.    Suplex attempts by Hennigan are blocked and Styles hits a neckbreaker.   Styles looks to be going for a Styles Clash but Hennigan hits the back body drop to stop it.   A running knee by Hennigan is good for only two.   Hennigan comes into the ring over the top rope and Styles catches him and gives him a backbreaker over his knee.  Ouch.    Springboard flying elbow by Styles into a torture rack and then powerbomb by Styles.    Hennigan might be done, but the count is only two.   Both men are being counted down now.  The crowd is chanting "Break His Neck" as AJ Styles is looking for a Styles Clash and that's not even funny.    Styles has a submission attempt again but it doesn't stick.   The two are trading blows and I'm distracted by someone showing up outside in a red car.   A couple more moves, Styles Clash and AJ Styles is the new FWE Heavyweight Champion winning the match 2-1.   The Young Bucks come out and celebrate with AJ Styles.   The FWE commentator says that the Bullet Club has all of the gold in FWE.    Take that, Paul London and Veda Scott!    Hennigan does the "Too Sweet" with the Young Bucks, which is funny because there was a rumor going around not that long ago the Young Bucks declined an offer to appear in Lucha Underground because they felt they weren't offered enough money, though I wasn't really a fan of them before that nonsense.     The commentators sign off and the show is over.

I was actually trying to find out more about Shelly Martinez's opponent and none of the "major" wrestling websites like PW Ponderings, PW Torch and even Cage Match dot net even had that match listed in their results.   I did find this video on here which helped me to realize that the guy who attacked Mike Law earlier on in the night was indeed Kevin Tibbs.     Also, the commentator I never referred to by name throughout this show was Jordan Schneider and thanks to the official FWE website for helping me figure that one out.   Overall this wasn't a bad show but it wasn't the best show of the year or anything either.    One thing I need to point out is that Jordan Schneider kept making numerous references to the fact of how good this show was, how good the matches were and at the end of it he even said that from the top to bottom this might be the best card FWE has ever run (Which might be true because this is their first show that I've seen, but not every match on here was five stars and I feel like that was what he was implying)   Here is my free tip for Mr. Schneider in the regard of him trying to constantly put this over as the best match/show ever.    There exists a phone company whom I won't name by name and they have commercials on Hulu+ all the time about how they have the most coverage in the United States for the least amount of money.    One night, when we saw the commercial for the hundredth time my wife says to me that someone she works with has them as their provider and they never have any service, lots of dropped calls, etc.    It makes sense though.   If you're putting out a good service at an affordable price then you're not going to pay for commercials to brag about it because a) you have customers and b) it's a waste of money.   This particular wireless provider is feeding you this propaganda via commercial because they want to get you into a contract before you realize how awful their service is and what's more so is that their prices can't be that great if they're using money to advertise instead of make their service better or just simply pass the savings on to you.   What I'm trying to say is that anyone who is the best doesn't walk around saying "I'm the best! I'm the best!" because they know they're the best and so does everyone else.   A little less of the patting yourselves on the back (or none at all) could go a very long way for FWE.   Let the fans decide what they thought of the match rather than cramming your opinions down their throat like a late night television salesman.   Again, just my thought.   EVOLVE 38 had one of the best match for match cards of 2015 if not of all-time on Sunday night and do you know how many times that was stressed by the commentators?   I believe the number is zero.   They let the wrestling speak for itself and FWE should learn from that and let their matches speak for themselves rather than operating under the belief that if you say something three times someone is more likely to remember it and thus they might think it to be true if it is a matter of opinion.

The show opened hot with Gargano-Bandido Jr. but it took a turn from there to the not so good.   The six man tag was all right for what it was but Cassidy-VSK should have never been on the iPPV while the Taylor-E match made me mad because I know these two could go and do so much more if they just cut the comedy out.    Juicy Product-Nese/Jigsaw was a decent enough tag team match for its place on the card and all but Dreamer-Hero could have been so much better in so many ways.    If you see Tommy Dreamer vs. Chris Hero on paper (or computer screen) you have certain expectations.   This match didn't exceed these expectations because it didn't even live up to them.   If Dreamer was going to win with the piledriver, why not a DDT for Hero to kick out of?   How about any sort of offense for Tommy Dreamer to make him seem like he should have won that match convincingly, huh?    The last three matches played roles well, with the tag team title match perhaps stealing the show, the mixed tag team match more or less being filler and the main event being okay but nowhere near as good as I expected it could be either.    Where were the high flying moves?   John Hennigan has had much better matches with Prince Puma in much less time in Lucha Underground and I'm even inclined to say that his match airing that very same night against King Cuerno inside a steel cage wasn't that much worse than this one.   AJ Styles had a better match at the ROH 13th Anniversary show against ACH and anything Styles has done in Japan was better than this.    So how did this just feel like it was going to be so big and so special but somehow end up just crashing and burning?  

I'm not one to give shows ratings in terms of being out of five stars or on a letter grade like we're in school but this definitely felt like a C+ show simply because some of the lowest points that would have made this an F could only bring the final grade up to a C because of the few good points it had.    The card should have been shuffled around a bit, unless they're not going for that every match is better than the next feel and that's okay because WWE and TNA have never followed that strategy either.     The majority of the problem here was not living up to expectations and I think that on paper this looked like an A+ card but it just fell short of that by the way it was presented and some of these matches played out.    The price tag isn't that bad though, as you're not paying even $24.99 or more to watch this, but if you're really a huge fan of these wrestlers or only want to see the two or three matches that made the show then go for it.     By far not the worst wrestling show I've watched this year (House of Hardcore VIII undoubtedly takes that honor) but it's closer to the bottom than the top for sure.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

The Wednesday Night War: NXT vs. Lucha Underground Week 4 [3/11/15]

I decided to mix it up this week and begin with Lucha Underground.

In the opening match Pentagon Jr. defeated Argenis.  Argenis put up a good fight and it was a fun match to watch for sure but this just had me because of the violence.    You know how we see a lot of people powerbomb their opponent into the turnbuckles?   Well, Pentagon Jr. had Argenis over his head in a press and then slammed him down into the corner where he was feet over head.   It looked painful.    Matt Striker made mention of AC Green being in the crowd but when they put the camera on someone who looked like Jack Osbourne no one said anything.   It did take a few times to show Josh Barnett before Striker pointed him out.    Oh, and also, Matt Striker said that all the guys Pentagon Jr. has beaten have gone to the hospital and he names off Famous B and Ricky Mandel, who interestingly enough Dario Cueto wanted Alberto El Patron to face last week instead of Texano Jr.    Pentagon Jr. hit that cradle piledriver into an arm bar for the win and we might not see Argenis for a while.     I'm still interested in who Pentagon's master is.   Dario Cueto?  Someone from AAA?   That guy in the cage we saw that no one is talking about anymore??   I am intrigued.  

Points Awarded: 4

Catrina told Fenix in a locker room segment that Mil Muertes won't stop until he has taken all of Fenix's lives and Fenix is a man of a million lives.    She basically says he won't stop until she buries him, which could be hints of either a casket or buried alive type of match and I am intrigued.    With that, Lucha Underground has furthered an angle in thirty seconds a thousand times better than WWE does some of theirs in weeks.   (Catrina did reveal in a later segment with Mil Muertes that there would be a casket match next week.   I'm psyched)  

Points Awarded: 2

As Ivelisse prepared to face Angelico in a match booked last week, both Matt Striker and Vampiro acted as if they didn't know who the special guest referee was going to be.   When Dario Cueto said it in the office segment last week.   And it was written in my review.  I have to deduct points for that.

Points Awarded: -5

The match between Ivelisse and Angelico itself was all right, but I would have much rather seen Ivelisse get the win (even if by cheating) and then having her pushed towards the title picture because why not?   She's one of the best workers in all of Lucha Underground and arguably the most talented female wrestler alive so Ivelisse vs. Prince Puma could be money.    Instead, Angelico went to superkick Son of Havoc and instead knocked out Ivelisse.   At times, Angelico looked like he felt badly about what he was doing but then he also only had his finisher prevented by Son of Havoc pulling Ivelisse off of his back.     How is Angelico not the rudo in this match with Ivelisse being the sympathetic one?  I don't know.   But a win here for Angelico, in this fashion, doesn't do much for him but it does play into the drama in this triangle a bit so I like that.   Not as many points as I'd like to have given but I'll give it some.

Points Awarded: 4

It is worth noting that Matt Striker pointed out that the main event is the first ever cage match in Lucha Underground and EVOLVE had their first ever cage match just three nights ago at EVOLVE 38.   I liked this match and I know that Lucha Underground tapes a number of episodes at a time so this might not have been taken into consideration at the time, but this was constantly being compared to the Drew Galloway-Roderick Strong cage match in my mind as they were both within the same week.   For one thing, the feud between King Cuerno and Johnny Mundo doesn't seem anywhere nearly as serious as what you think of Galloway and Strong having gone through to end up inside a cage to finally settle the score.    Is it odd though that the best matches in Lucha Underground so far have involved Johnny Mundo?   (The other being his ladder match with Prince Puma)   Shouldn't there be more, I don't know, luchadores in the best matches from Lucha Underground?   Prince Puma vs. Fenix was solid enough but we need some good mask on mask action in Lucha Underground.     Johnny Mundo did end up winning this match because instead of leaving the cage he hit Starship Pain off of the top of it onto King Cuerno.     That was really impressive and Vampiro saying "holy shit is right" unedited, this match sent me home happy on an otherwise lackluster show.    Maybe I've started holding Lucha Underground in too high of a regard but I just didn't feel like this overall show was as good as some of their previous ones and that mystery ref deal with Striker and Vamp is going to hurt them most.   Still, this was a solid match I'm willing to give them ten points for pulling it off so excellently.

Points Awarded: 10

Total Points for Lucha Underground This Week: 15

The first match on NXT saw Enzo Amore and Big Cass defeat the Lucha Dragons.    This was a good way to start the show hot and I enjoy both teams but wanted Enzo & Cass to win, which they did, simply because it helps them work closer to the tag team titles and it just sets the Lucha Dragons closer to being on the main WWE roster full time and out of NXT since they're appearing on Main Event anyway.     Carmella wasn't at ringside because she was preparing for her own match so I'm going to assume something between her, Blake and Murphy will happen later in the show.

Points Awarded: 4

Before our second match, which was the Carmella match, it was announced via WWE commercial that next week NXT would feature Alexa Bliss vs. Sasha Banks and Alex Riley vs. Kevin Owens.   Was that a slap to the face of the WWE Universe for watching NXT?  Was that someone's way of saying that the rest of this show doesn't matter and I should just turn it off now?   Either way, I'm taking away points for what I would consider to be WWE making their own spoiler even if it was just piss poor timing.

Points Awarded: -2

Alexa Bliss won her match against Carmella, which makes sense since she's facing the NXT Women's Champion next week.   I'm still not impressed by Alexa Bliss as she can just so easily fade into the background with other divas.    I'm having enough trouble keeping track of Emma and Summer Rae, why would WWE throw another blonde at me?    Carmella deserves better than being fodder for returning women.     Bring back Blue Pants and make with the serious feud already.

Points Awarded: 2

Alex Riley defeated CJ Parker in the third match of the night and you had to assume it was coming because a) CJ Parker is the resident jobber in NXT and b) WWE told us that Alex Riley would be getting his match next week against Kevin Owens already.     Now, I watched NXT after Lucha Underground this week and I have to tell you that I know this is my fourth week in The Wednesday Night War and I know that NXT has yet to win a week.   I've already written and added up the points for Lucha Underground for the week and I thought this might be the week that NXT actually wins one but how can I give them points here and sleep at night?   Not only did WWE basically say this match was pointless before it even aired, they actually had Rich whoever put over the importance of Alex Riley winning if he wants to get his hands on Kevin Owens.     What?    The whole Lucha Underground/special guest referee deal was one thing.    But this just took stupid to an entirely new level.    And Alex Riley still just reminds me too much of a bland jobber, sort of like The Miz, who WWE often struggles to find anything to do with on the main roster.    Riley should have either stayed on commentary or been fired.     I wanted to give this total lack of logic minus a million points but a) Alex Riley will hopefully lose to Kevin Owens next week and go away (so it wrapping up quickly is at least good) and b) Kevin Owens wins line of the year by telling Alex Riley he's obviously stupid because of that awful tattoo on his back.   Yes, Kevin Owens just helped NXT fall down a hole they'd probably never be able to get back out from.  

Points Awarded: -25

Hideo Itami and Tyler Breeze were in the main event together because, you know, wrestling, but this show has been such shit between the first match and now that it doesn't even matter, does it?   I know the live crowd can't see the promos that WWE so foolishly chose to air at the worst possible time but if my couch was a seat I paid for I would have left the arena after the first match.    That is to say, after the first match and then the WWE self-commercial that aired the wind had been taken out of my sails and I had mentally checked out of this match.    That is until Tyler Breeze won... Clean... Over Hideo Itami.    In what universe does it make sense for Hideo Itami to lose clean right now when there isn't something on the line such as a title or title shot?   I'm a fan of Breeze though so I'll let this slide and go into the "Arnold Classic" next week knowing that it can't possibly be worse than this.   At least, I really hope it can't.   I haven't seen booking this awful since TNA last year and that's really saying a lot.

Points Awarded: 5

Total Points for NXT This Week: -16

So there you have it.   In a week where I didn't think that Lucha Underground was likely to beat NXT, I actually watched NXT and was proven to be rather wrong.     I watch NXT on Hulu+ so I'm not sure if that ad aired during the Network showing of NXT but does it even matter at this point?  I'm watching it less than 24 hours later, and I avoided spoilers as I usually do, so it's not my fault.    When Kevin Owens fought Sami Zayn for the NXT Title I avoided spoilers the next day before I watched the match and as such WWE didn't decide to air ads during the middle of the Hulu+ replay and spoil it for me by saying "Next week new NXT Champion Kevin Owens does some stuff in the ring when he talks..." or anything like that, so this just seemed like a huge mistake on the part of WWE that really soured my experience on this show.     Hopefully next week The Wednesday Night War doesn't involve these two companies trying to decide who can pull off the bigger faux pas.  

***Lucha Underground Wins Week 4 15-(-16)***
(Lucha Underground Leads 101-44 Overall)