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The 7 - Guest Columns - IWA MS - 01/15/05 - Highland, IN Register and log in to post!
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#1 Posted on 16.1.05 0329.44
Reposted on: 16.1.12 0331.29
IWA Mid-South's first show of 2005 in Highland and of course I'll go. Not a big card tonight, none of the big-name indy fly-ins or anything, and the "draw" was New Jack. The rest of the show is just set up with solid matches. On the way in we stopped in Sawyer at a truckstop to gas up and get some food, and I bought an $8 road atlas because...I like road atlases. Atlasii? I dunno.

Got there and bought a ROH hoodie for $15 and put it on because it is ASS COLD here right now. Just miserably cold. I was actually surprised that the attendance tonight was so good (about 225 or so?) because it is seriously wicked cold out the last few days. I also ended up buying a Chris Hero shirt, a tape of the IWA MS/NWA No Limits show from last weekend, Phenomenal Invasion from last September and Rumble in Rensselaer from 12/18. So overall I sunk about $85 into IWA tonight. We took bleacher seats and once we got used to being so far away from the ring it was actually pretty nice as you could see shit instead of looking around a big head.

ERIC PRIEST & SILAS YOUNG v. THE IRON SAINTS (VITO & SAL THOMASELLI)

Better than the usual Highland opener and this is what I think they could start doing more of with opening matches. Generally the opener on the Highland shows (and most shows) is some worthless piddly little turd of a match with non-regulars or one low card regular going over a non-regular in four minutes, but this was like an actual match that just happened to go first. Priest is a lot of fun as a doofy heel but I can't ever see taking him seriously in IWA with the Underwear Model gimmick. Silas Young is physically like a combination of BJ Whitmer, Chris Sabin and Jerry Lynn, even down to the pants he wears. Young is OK that I remember but Priest is carrying his team here. The Iron Saints aren't terribly impressive or anything. The match is kind of screwy in terms of flow but easy to watch, especially with Priest falling on his head trying for a springboard moonsault or whatever he was going for (on purpose) and then trying a 619 later in which he completely flies out of the ring, which is really hilarious. Finish is the Thomasellis doing a double team flying curbstomp on Young, which is a pretty cool move and looks devastating and what have you. Decent match and a nice opener.

Dave Prazak talks about Mercedes Martinez being unable to make this show and how she's defending the IWA MS/NWA Midwest women's title in Framingham, MA, against Ariel and Hailey Skye (or something like that), and Ian Rotten isn't there tonight because he's in California in a hardcore tournament and he's already defeated Angel the Hardcore Homosexual. Eddie Kingston comes to the ring and announces that Jack Marciano is out with a knee injury and will be out for a while, and requests that he get to choose a new partner tonight against Boz & Bradley in the cage. Dave says no? Which makes no sense, really? Then he says if Kingston gets to choose a new partner, Boz and Bradley get to have a third partner... or something. And his other choices are a handicap match or being stripped. None of this makes sense taken at face value but at this point I just roll with some of the angles here as a lot of them don't really make sense, I find. Anyway Kingston ends up with Steve Stone as his partner and he's also the newest member of the Fannin Family.

BRAD FREAKIN' MARTIN v. DYSFUNCTION v. CHANDLER MCCLURE (with Jim Fannin)

McClure is still in a tryout period to join the Fannin Family. Brad Freakin' Martin comes out, pumps his fist, and gets literally no reaction from ANYONE. It was hilarious and sad. Dysfunction comes out and he's wearing a t-shirt that he doesn't take off and apparently he has two fans. Usually this is that opener where a regular (McClure) beats a non-regular (or two) in about four minutes. That's what he does here, he pins Dysfunction in about four minutes and the match wasn't any good.

PETEY WILLIAMS v. CHAD COLLYER

Petey is out first, stops, goes back, comes back out, gets the pop he wants, and heads to the ring. Why the fuck should people be cheering him? Isn't he a heel now? I mean come on, dude. Good thing I think Petey Williams sucks or I would've just started thinking he sucks because of that. Collyer is now using "Bodies" by Drowning Pool which is the least appropritate ring music possible. I really liked when he was using "Hair of the Dog", it fit. This match was a lot of Collyer's solid work bringing Petey's shittiness down to earth. The thing I don't like about Petey Williams isn't that he's BAD, but that he's not at all good. You know what I'm saying? Anyway with a guy like Collyer, Petey's overness and big impressive flipping piledriver can work in the favor of both, and Collyer's total professionalism as a wrestler does the same, making for a crowd being into a Chad Collyer match (rare) and making for a Petey Williams match that makes any sense (also rare). Really good match, I thought, best Petey match I've seen live and one of the better Collyer matches. Lots of leg work as this was billed as sharpshooter v. Texas cloverleaf. Petey takes Collyer's knee out but Chaddo gets the cloverleaf on anyway. Collyer counters the Canadian Destroyer like three times, which I was happy with. Williams ends up winning with the sharpshooter. Good match.

LARRY SWEENEY OPEN CHALLENGE

That's right, Sweet n' Sour Larry Sweeney has an open challenge. By god he was undefeated in Highland in 2004. In singles matches. (He didn't have any.)

LARRY SWEENEY v. GOLDEN VAMPIRE XIII

I'm noticing something familiar about this newest of the famous Romanian Golden Vampires, then it gets pointed out to me and it all makes beautiful, excellent sense. The match is absolutely horrendous but funny for the first however long, lots of Sweeney bitching and stalling and Golden Vampire XIII being robotic. There's one tremendous part of the match where Sweeney has GVXIII in a chinlock and Bryce Remsburg checks the arm, which doesn't drop but instead robotically moves toward the mat a tick at a time. Sweeney finally unmasks him, and GVXIII covers his head. Sweeney turns his back to gloat with the mask and by God if it ain't Tracy Smothers, and the world is suddenly brilliant. Smothers breaks out his backwoods ninja shit and fun is had by all. Smothers ends up winning, don't remember on what. Tracy says he'll be back. I approve. Fun if not really any good. I can trade off for one or the other most of the time, and this was a prime example. After Tracy's promo Candido runs into the ring to hug him for no reason other than he wants to.

TRIK DAVIS v. CHRIS HERO

Last month for the 12/12 road report I wrote this:

I was also thinking a neat next step might be to book Hero low on the card against someone like Priest, McClure or Trik Davis, and have him kind of complain about his placement (not in a shooty sense, just in that he feels he deserves more recognizable opposition), and the explanation to him is that he's not getting the job done, which is true, and he's had to be lowered because no one's paying to see him anymore. Just schtinking. He could lose that match, maybe to Davis who's familiar and a babyface, and both of them could be shocked by it, and then you have Hero just assault Davis and go heel, resenting Ian Rotten for losing faith in him and maybe even joining up with Fannin's crew.

Since Ian wasn't there the one thing didn't happen, and the Hero heel turn didn't quite go down YET, AGAIN, YET, but I'm quite surprised that the Hero/Trik thing ended up kind of happening. The match was pretty solid as Trik Davis is Mikey Whipwreck and after some chain stuff to start, Trik goes for a flash pin which infuriates Hero to the point where he's no selling punches and forearms and just walloping the shit out of Trik and repeatedly trying to put him away, continually failing and growing more and more frustrated. Trik is still rough around the edges, there's lots of work to be done there, but this must've been a real highlight for him as he ends up pinning Hero with a cradle. Hero is shocked and appalled, Davis is surprised and just stumbles out of the ring, hugging Bryce and being in disbelief. Hero ends up leaving through the front door, but later he comes back to do commentary which kind of ruins it. It sounds like I'm bitching about this show, I think, but up to this point I'm having a damn good time and we're just at the first intermission.

Toward the very end of the intermission as the cage is done being set up and all, New Jack stumbles to the ring. New Jack is drunk. D R U N K drunk. Just plastered. He rambles on and on and charges three people $10 for photos that this weird camera operator of his will take. Jim Fannin is freaking out right in front of us telling them to cut his mic because they don't have time for this shit. He tries to cut it himself but fails. This is just kind of a weird few minutes as Jack is just going on and on about nothing and saying he'll take pictures with people later for $5 because he just signed with WWE for a lot of money. At some point he decides to find the black people in the audience, of which there are two. A young man of mixed race stands up and asks to be counted, so New Jack tells him he doesn't count and goes on to son him. Just fucking weird. After he leaves the cage, New Jack hugs a white baby and says Ian's wife Patti is his baby mama. I'm not making any of this up. It was pretty surreal and borderline uncomfortable but in reality New Jack was just pissing around and having a good time and being a really nice guy.

IWA MID-SOUTH TAG TEAM TITLE CAGE MATCH
BRAD BRADLEY & RYAN BOZ v. EDDIE KINGSTON & STEVE STONE (champions, with Jim Fannin)


Pretty dull match, Kingston blades early and ends up being the only guy to bleed in the match. Just lots of brawling and fighting and nothing really going on. I was looking forward to this match but with Stone replacing Marciano it just wasn't the same as the Wildcards have that tag team chemistry and that was missing. Fannin slams the door on Bradley's arm and Bradley ends up having to be taken out, leaving Boz to fight Kingston and Stone 1-on-2 and everyone awaits the third member of their team to get in there. After a few minutes of Boz getting his ass kicked, a completely awesome and random moment happens when Trik Davis leaves the commentary table, takes off his shirt, scales the cage and dives onto Kingston and Stone. Davis and Boz end up dominating the rest of the match and winning the tag title. Trik Davis is having the finest night of his career, he's WAY over, and he's so so so so Mikey Whipwreck right now that it's unbelievable, right down to the part of Mikey Whipwreck where everyone is cheering for him. Bradley hits the ring right after the three count with his arm in a sling, wielding a chair, and sees what's happened. Bradley and Boz welcome him into the fold, Bradley shoves Trik and says he always wanted a little brother to beat up, and it's a really nice moment as these big monsters gone nice carry little Trik Davis on their shoulders. Not much as a match but as far as a cool moment and satisfying-ish ending goes, this really succeeded.

There's another intermisson so they can take the cage down. I come back in and buy some tapes while the nice girl that works the gimmick table is on the phone saying, "I would not let my kid in the ring with New Jack, I'm fuckin' serious." I don't think Jack got many photos.

SUBMISSION MATCH
MSCHIF v. MICKIE KNUCKLES


Better than their awful December match but not by much. Mickie hurts her knee or quad or something at one point and screams in pain, then MsChif puts her in a wacky submission for the win. Somewhere during the show Prazak announces that Ariel has won the women's title in Massachusetts by pinning the other broad that isn't Mercedes Martinez.

JOSH ABERCROMBIE v. BRANDON THOMASELLI

Thomaselli is just incredibly gifted. The amount of natural talent he has is scary. I read somewhere that he was a really good high school wrestler and if that's true it does show in his mat segments because he's really good. He's also a very smooth flyer and wrestles with great fluidity. The first portion of this match is an extended Thomaselli squash as Abercrombie is clearly outclassed. I haven't found anything to really get excited about with Abercrombie yet and this match didn't help me think he's better than OKish. Abercrombie takes control of the offense and it's pretty sloppy. Just a world of difference between these two guys. Abercrombie blows the same finish he blew last month, so he should probably just stop it with that. I hear it's a badass move but I don't even know what the fuck it is because he never hits it. The finish ends up being a momentarily frightening top-rope Air Raid Crash by Thomaselli. Fine match and Thomaselli is really going to be a star quickly. After the match, Vito and Sal come out to celebrate with Brandon, which is a big DUH moment of a turn since they're Wildside and Brandon has turned down invitations to join the Wildside faction. They end up doing the flying curbstomp thing to him, and Sal challenges him for December. When the audience objects, he clears up that he meant February. Good job, dude.

CLAUDIO CASTAGNOLI v. JIMMY JACOBS

Two of my favorite guys although I have yet to see Castagnoli in a good match since he came back to the States, the best of which was probably his TPI match with Nigel which wasn't remarkable or anything. This is the best Claudio match I've seen and Jacobs is so underrated as a worker right now because he's having damn good matches left and right with all kinds of opponents. Castagnoli flies with the grace of an eagle, we discovered. Huge height difference here. Good match and Jacobs wins with the Contra Code. I don't remember a lot of the match really but I remember liking it.

Afterward there's this weird thing across the building with Jacobs and a fan. Everyone close to it is saying it was a work, which I'll definitely believe because it just seemed so out of nowhere and stupid, and the guy looked like...well, I dunno, like someone Jimmy Jacobs would know in real life. I guess the thing had something to do with Jimmy and Becky Bayless and ended up with Jimmy shoving the guy in the face after Hero and Smothers had gone over to pull him off. Apparently if you could see and hear what was going on it was really stupid, but from across the room it just seemed weird. So I guess that's something, huh? Worked shoots and planted fans are lame. But I did like the match so I'll just ignore that this happened.

NWA MIDWEST TITLE MATCH
DANNY DANIELS v. CHRIS CANDIDO (champion, with Jim Fannin)


If you don't like Candido you won't like this. If you don't like silliness you won't like this. Candido seems to know he's not the physical equal of his younger days and has reverted to full-on comedy wrestler. I dig it, I can see why some people don't. But Candido's a hell of a lot of fun and as I said before, I can trade "good" for "fun" as long as everything else isn't stupid. Candido wrestles about 70% of this match with his ass hanging out and about 68% of it with a towel also hanging from his ass. I don't remember any of the wrestling besides a part early in the match where Candido bitches to the referee about Danny Daniels putting him in four headlocks and saying the state of Indiana has a five headlock rule. Fannin plays his part by demanding a DQ on the sixth headlock. "Pull your pants up" is the loudest chant I've heard since the Hero/Joe match. Candido instead completely ignores that his ass is hanging out. Steve Stone ends up interfering but failing to help Candido win. Fannin tries to piledrive Daniels and fails. Daniels knocks out the ref with a chain, then knocks out Candido with it. Bryce Remsburg runs in for the three count, but we get the Dusty finish when Thompson reverses. Really fun but I hate Dusty finishes.

It's supposed to be New Jack v. Corporal Robinson here, but instead 2 Tuff Tony and JC Bailey run in to attack Robinson before New Jack comes out, and instead we get a tornado tag no rules match.

2 TUFF TONY & JC BAILEY v. CORPORAL ROBINSON & NEW JACK

This match was total dogshit but it was fun to be there for a "Natural Born Killas" experience just one time. It was really awesome momentarily but once the match was going and the song stopped and they couldn't get it cued back up (though we were deked out that Daizee Haze might join the fight and obliterate everyone) it was painfully bad. Not even "typical New Jack" because he's just not in the shape he used to be in and he's beat to hell by now. Tony and Bailey do what they can and actually Corporal Robinson looks great here with his usual tremendous punches and some crisp offense (two boot camps to Bailey and a really nice brainbuster too). Robinson pins Tony after New Jack jumps off the top rope to chair Tony.

The show was not great or anything, and I don't know how it would come off on tape, but as a live show I really did have a good time tonight and what more can you ask? There was no match that I was like, "Yeah that was great." It was just a fun show. I will be back next weekend with either a live report from the IWA show in Valparaiso or a lucha show in Chicago, I don't know which yet.
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#2 Posted on 16.1.05 1909.50
Reposted on: 16.1.12 1911.19
MOTHERFUCK! I missed Tracy Smothers! Haaaaate. Show looks fun. I don't really know why Kingston would be added to the Fannin Family since he's already a heat magnet by himself, so he doesn't really need Fannin. And I really have no idea what the hell they're doing with the women's title. Is Mercedes Martinez really THAT expensive? I know she's not really going to put asses in the seats or sell that many tapes, but jeez just strip her of the belt if it's that big of a problem. I don't really see how putting the belt on another east coast wrestler is gonna solve the problem either, but oh well.


    I will be back next weekend with either a live report from the IWA show in Valparaiso or a lucha show in Chicago, I don't know which yet.


Yeah, I'm definitely thinking about going to the lucha show, but Valpo is waaaay closer so I'm probably going to that unless the card looks absolutely stinky.
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#3 Posted on 17.1.05 0421.11
Reposted on: 17.1.12 0421.25
I also forgot that there was this amazing spot in the Jacobs/Castagnoli match where Castagnoli tossed him up and European uppercutted him on the way down and it was as good as you can imagine that ending up. Claudio even seeemd surprised with how well it worked. It was really great.

Ariel was supposed to be in the women's tourney last May but ended up pulling out, I don't remember why. They're bringing in Melissa Anderson (Cheerleader Melissa) and Sara Del Ray next month, both based out of CA I think, so I don't know that cost is really the deal. I don't really get the title change in MA either but whatever.

This show was actually the best time I've had at a Highland show since TPI.
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#4 Posted on 17.1.05 1026.40
Reposted on: 17.1.12 1026.47
Sweeney - GVXIII
AWESOME AWESOME AWESOME.


Why must you taunt me with your unfulfilled promises of Wrestling Gold reviews? :)
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