Pierre Carl Ouellet won the IWS title Saturday night during Praise the Violence, overcoming adversity, superior numbers and a vicious premeditated attempt to cripple his left knee. The Arsenal, in a crazed defence of his belt, used chairs, tables and his own body to attack PCO's knee with almost surgical precision. When violence failed, the Arsenal tried larceny, but PCO survived both to become IWS champion.
It was a night of firsts: the first IWS show of 2004; the first IWS show at Unison. It was a night which saw the IWS broom boys set up the usual number of chairs for an IWS crowd... and then set up another hundred chairs for the larger crowd... and then finally run out of chairs. It was a night which saw two Montreal policemen walking the beat wander into the Unison to see why the parking lot was so full, and which saw them leave an hour later, voices shot from screaming for their new IWS favourites. It was a night when men who could barely walk wrestled as though possessed by Lou Thesz. In short, it was a magical night that some are already calling the greatest IWS show ever.
The wrestling began with a showdown of two of the best bumpers in all of Canada: the human rubber ball, Sexxxy Eddy and the head of le Syndicat de Lutte Internet, Fred le Merveille. Eddy had his valet D-Vyn in his corner, while Fred had both Elsa Bangz and Marc le Grizzly backing him up. It didn't take long for the outside participants to get involved inside the ring with D-Vyn getting the better of Fred, as Sexxxy Eddy was trying to put the moves on Elsa. In the end, Eddy's refusal to take Elsa seriously cost him, when Marc le Grizzly caught Eddy from behind, setting him up for Fred le Merveille's "101" pedigree variant which gave Fred the victory at 8:25.
The Flying Hurricanes and the Hardcore Ninjaz have been butting heads for months. At Praise the Violence, the two teams finally got a chance to settle their differences in a straight up tag match. With the Arsenal in the Ninjaz' corner, the Flying Hurricanes enlisted the help of the Motivator of Madness, who returned to the IWS exactly one year after being fired by the Arsenal.
Allergic to a fair fight, the Hardcore Ninjaz got back their edge by handcuffing Takao to the ring post and isolating Kenny the Bastard for a three on one beat down. Eventually, the Motivator of Madness was able to get Takao¹s handcuffs off to even the odds, but when Takao and Kenny turned their back on the Motivator of Madness, he stunned them both with simultaneous low blows. The beating that followed was complete and devastating, with the Ninjaz burying the Flying Hurricanes under chairs and then leaping from the top rope for their patented Pearl Harbour chair assisted leg drop for the pin at 8:24. After the match was over, the punishment continued, culminating in Kenny being used as a missile to drive Takao through a table. After the Fan Favourites exited in triumph, Kenny and Takao were carried to the back.
The Green Phantom came to Praise the Violence looking for Dru Onyx and revenge after the Bajan Bomber engineered Tank's ambush during Season's Beatings. But with Onyx out of town, the Green Phantom had to settle for Onyx' cousin Giovanni declaring, "If I can't spill your blood Onyx, then I will spill the blood of your flesh and blood!" Giovanni describes himself as Onyx' younger, better looking and more athletic cousin, and he gave a good account of himself, but after two Phantom Menace cradle drivers and a Phantasm, the Green Phantom stood poised for victory. At the very last second, a rushing Tank interrupted the count. After rocking the Green Phantom with two Tiger Shell Drivers, Tank rolled Giovanni on top of Phantom and then ordered the referee to count while he stood with one foot on Giovanni's back keeping the Phantom's shoulders down for the pin at 9:17. To add insult to injury, Tank mocked the Phantom by imitating his most familiar poses and mannerisms.
Before Extreme Revolution's scheduled tag team title defence, Fred le Merveille came back out, with the entire Syndicat de Lutte Internet, to decree that now that the IWS was in Saint-Laurent, it was legally required to have a French tag team compete for the tag belt. Since neither the champions, Crazy Crusher and Nightmare Manson, nor the challengers, Kid Kamikaze and Kurt Lauderdale, were French according to Fred, he announced that it was now a three way elimination match with Damian Dumont and Viking Vimont as the third team.
Crazy Crusher quickly built on his reputation as the cruiser who hits like a heavyweight, at one point nonchalantly lifting the monstrous Kurt Lauderdale for a Death Valley Driver. Nonetheless, it seemed like Kurt Lauderdale's size and strength gave his team a definite advantage, until Kevin Steen intervened. Seeking revenge for Kurt's ambush during Season's Beatings, Steen attacked and stunned the big man, giving Steen enough time to flatten Kid Kamikaze with a package pile driver and roll a dazed Nightmare Manson on top of the Westmount Playboy for the pin after 13:02.
After Kid Kamikaze and Kurt Lauderdale¹s elimination, Extreme Revolution fell victim to a classic SLI referee diversion. Fred snuck into the ring to hit Nightmare Manson with his "101" pedigree, allowing Viking and Damian to cover for the win at 14:32. Afterwards, le Syndicat de Lutte Internet celebrated their victory in the ring with Pepsis to the cheers of their French fans and the jeers of everyone else.
After the tag title match, IWS co-owner PCP Crazy F'N Manny came to the ring to salute Crazy Crusher. Manny told the shocked crowd that Crusher had wrestled with a broken ankle, postponing surgery to appear at Praise the Violence. Crazy Crusher was well-liked before Praise the Violence, but after his gutsy performance Saturday night, he is truly an IWS hardcore soldier.
A backstage fight between Kevin Steen and Dan Paysan led to their match at Praise the Violence. Oddly, they were fighting over which of them hated Kurt Lauderdale the most. The two men agreed to decide in the ring who would get to face Kurt Lauderdale during Violent Valentines. At first, it appeared that Dan Paysan was destined to win as Steen was mugged by Kurt Lauderdale and Kid Kamikaze before the match even started. Kevin Steen survived Dan Paysan's initial onslaught and Tomassino's interference to make it a competitive match. Dan Paysan had his chances to win, but the flawless technique of the IWS' Mr. Wrestling proved too much for the high flying Good Fella. Steen finished off Dan Paysan with his trademark Package Pile-Driver after 10:20.
Before the three-way dance pitting reluctant roommates El Generico and Beef Wellington against IWS Commissioners Joseph FitzMorris' contract super-star, EXcesS69, the crowd was treated to one of the IWS famed comedy skits. In a pre-taped segment, Beef Wellington tried to teach El Generico how to pick up women only for EXcesS69 to out-Casanova both men.
The ensuing match was a showcase for brilliant technical wrestling, death-defying high-flying and innovative comedy. The performance by all three men was especially impressive since Beef Wellington was nursing an eye infection, EXcesS69 was limping from a leg injury and as Beef put it, "El Generico hasn't been right since he got dropped on the head last month." Mind you, El Generico always gets dropped on his head. In fact at Praise the Violence, it was Beef himself who dropped El Generico on his head, putting his roommate through a ringside table with an E. Coli Driver from the apron. Sadly for Beef, EXcesS69 took advantage to pull a flash cover on Beef Wellington. Beef got his shoulder up at two, but EXcesS69 used that momentum to roll Beef into his First Impression submission hold. Trapped in the middle of the ring, with his back twisted like a Mobius strip and with El Generico unconscious on the outside, Beef had no choice but to tap at 13:00.
To help ensure fairness, President Seska ejected the Hardcore Ninjaz from the building prior to the main event. Stripped of his goons, the Arsenal was in trouble early in the match, until the Motivator of Madness made his presence felt, pulling down the ropes and spilling PCO to the outside. Like a shark scenting blood, the Arsenal zeroed in on PCO's injury attempting to hyper-extend his left knee. This led to a vicious moment where the Arsenal dove off the top turn buckle driving PCO's knee through the Time Keeper¹s table.
Dragging a limping PCO back to the ring, the Arsenal used a chair to bend PCO's knee in a torturous half Boston Crab. With PCO screaming in agony, it seemed like the Arsenal was within reach of victory. It was at this moment, eighteen minutes into the match, that the ring bell sounded and the Arsenal grabbed his belt in triumph. But PCO never tapped. The cunning Motivator of Madness had stolen the ring bell from the wreckage of the Time Keeper's table.
IWS President Seska ordered the Arsenal back to the ring and declared that the match must continue. Furious, PCO hit the Arsenal with a devastating power bomb and finished off the One Man War with a top rope cannonball for the win at 19:49. After PCO's victory, the IWS locker room emptied out to congratulate him on his victory and an emotional PCO thanked the fans, declaring that the spirit of the IWS and of the IWS fans was unlike that of any fed in the world.
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Welcome, everyone, to the latest edition of Inside The Ropes. I'm Canadian Bulldog, known to many as the toughest S.O.B. in the IWC (Prove me wrong, Ryder!). We have a ton to get to this week, but first, a quick poll: