NYWC ran its first Thursday night show of the summer, Trust No One, and it was a damn good one. A big crowd lined up before the show, and everyone stayed pretty loud all night. It made for a fun night, and really helped make this a hot show. That, and the fact that it was hot as hell in the Sportatorium.
Hot or not, I really liked this show. I also brought my friend Christin along for her first (of many, it seems) independent wrestling show. Unless she’s a great actress, she had a blast, too. It was a lot of fun seeing what she reacted to, even though she didn’t know any of the players involved, the stories, etc.
Before we get to the action, I wanted to follow up on something from last month. I complained about the ringside cameramen fighting to get the exact same shots, making one redundant. After speaking to some of the powers-that-be at NYWC, well, it turns out there’s a god reason for it. The hard cam and one ringside cam are recording for NYWC (details on that at a later date). The other ringside camera is recording for RF Video. Two separate entities, two separate projects, to reasons to need the shot. FAR more reasonable than I thought, which made this FAR less annoying this time around.
Athletic Inc. d Grim Reefer & Latin Dragon
This match was a pretty good opener. Jesse Vane and Matthew Justice, better known as Athletic Inc, are a great team. I love watching them work together. I LOVE Reefer’s work. Interesting to see him back to his better known gimmick, after a name-change last month. I’ve only see Dragon wrestle once (last month), and don’t know too much about him. This was a good way to showcase him, and introduce him to the NYWC crowd.
What worked: The action here was really good, and the established team won over two guys who have never (to my knowledge) teamed before.
What made me angry: It didn’t make me angry, per se, but there wasn’t any reason for Reefer and Dragon to team up. As a one-off, it worked.
The Great & Powerful O d Earl Cooter
You know the Big O. He still needs some work in the ring, but he’s a lot of fun to watch. He’s a physical beast, and he knows it. Cooter made his NYWC debut in this match. He runs local indy group FTW, which is the training school for Dragon Gate USA/Evolve/FTP. Having met him on a couple occasions, and trading the occasional Facebook message, I can also say the Southern Stud is also a pretty cool dude, so I was happy to see him on this show.
What worked: I keep expecting Big O matches to be total squashes, based entirely on his look and intensity. This wasn’t a squash by any means. I liked that it was booked more to be more competitive, because it means Cooter can be useful down the road. Killing him would mean he’s one and done, and that doesn’t really help anyone, especially considering how over O is anyway. Also, the crowd REALLY helped this match, a lot.
What made me angry: I get the impression that this match was thrown together late, because it was kind of sloppy. Not bad, but sloppy. I think if these guys had time to work out something better together, they could do a lot better… but based on what happened in the main event, I doubt we’ll be seeing these two together anytime soon. I’m totally okay with what happens later, by the way. Here’s hoping for more Cooter in the future.
“Chainsaw” Joe Gacy & Drew Gulak d Anthony Nese & Papadon
This is a rematch from last month’s show, and I was really excited when I realized these four guys were paired up again. They’re just great. I figured these guys would build on last month’s match and try to top it, and I was definitely right.
What worked: The action was solid throughout. Nese had a fantastic hot tag. Nese and Papadon had a great false finish with a shining wizard, followed by a 450 – only to be broken up by Drew Gulak. I loved this, because it built so logically and so well on the last one. Gacy eventually pins Nese with a great big splash off the top. The scary part? I think these guys probably held back, based on their spot on the card. I’d love to see them work this match as a main event.
What made me angry: My only real gripe with this match was the amount of illegal man pin attempts. After a certain point in the match, all four men just started killing each other, with everyone pinning everyone. Also, I’d dare say the NYWC crowd has gotten spoiled with some of its top talents, Nese and Papadon included. These guys put out great matches, with great psychology and amazing work… but the crowd doesn’t always seem to appreciate it. MAKE SOME NOISE. These guys more than earn it.
Francis Kipland Stevens came out to the ring to call out Vitko, who to this point, had been making life miserable for security. He was alone tonight, but continuing his anti-NYWC crusade/invasion. Kip made some shoot comments about one of the missing team members, Casanova Valentine, who is out after being stabbed in the face. Kip then asked where Jamie Van Leamer and the crooked ref from last month were, since he saw their cars outside. Out comes Mega, who has both Van Leamur and the crooked ref bound, with their mouths covered in tape. The beating that followed was tremendous.
I liked this segment a lot because, for the first time in this feud, it gave Kip the upper hand. It let the crowd get behind him, and established him as a real threat to Vitko and his group. This was good.
“Flawless” Blake Morris & DJ Hyde d. Bill Carr & Dan Barry
I like Morris and Hyde together. They’ve definitely grown on me as a team here in NYWC. This match was a big change for Carr, and a nice return for Barry. They’re doing a pretty funny good cop/bad cop routine (with the outfits and mustache to match), which has apparently gotten pretty popular elsewhere. I’m excited to watch it develop.
What worked: Fun match. Love the gimmick. Loved DJ disrespecting Carr, and daring him to hit him like a man. Love Morris in general. These guys seemed to have fun together. Also, Barry catching himself calling Morris an asshole, and reacting like he forgot he’s not supposed to curse, was really funny.
What made me angry: Crusher Doogan and Aria Cadenza caused the distraction, allowing Apollyon to attack Bill Carr, handing Morris and Hyde the in. Not sure if this was Hyde and Morris joining up with Doogan, or the start of a feud between Carr and Apollyon, but the ending felt flat.
Stockade d J-Ro
This was a last man standing match, and it was awesome. Highlights included a Cactus Jack elbow drop by Stockade, an incredible climb-and-dive by J-Ro you’d need to see to understand, a broken table, thumbtacks, and a brutal piledriver on the exposed ring boards. If this show comes out on DVD, you should pick it up. You’ll get your money’s worth in this match, and there’s still five more matches to go.
What worked: This was a good hardcore match, but it was also much more than that. This match (and feud) with Stockade went a long way in making J-Ro a true NYWC superstar. When this started, he was a guy the crowd didn’t really know or care about, having matches to have matches. Now, he’s shown that he’s legit, and that he belongs in the mix with some of NYWC’s best and biggest stars. Good work by all involved.
Marti Belle & Ricky Cataldo d Chrissy Rivera
This was more of an angle than a match. Marti cut a pre-match promo, saying Chrissy didn’t respect the Starlet title the way she and Cataldo do. She convinced Cataldo to team up, and they just KILLED Rivera, then double-pinned her, to become co-champions. After the match, the beatdown continued. Sammie Pickles ran out with a chair to make the save…but quickly got taken out. Rivera then got destroyed with the chair, until J-Ro came out to save his real-life significant other.
What worked: This was really good. It was short and sweet. Everything looked like it connected. The character work was good. A huge improvement over last month.
What made me angry: I’m not a huge fan of the co-champion gimmick, but I’ll wait to see where this goes before I judge it.
Reckless & Wasted, Jabali Jr. & Anthony LaCerra d The A-Listers (Alvin Alvarez, J-Redd, Justin Toxic & Ultimo Maya)
This was a lot of fun. It started by addressing a complaint from last month, with the two lucha characters doing some pretty good lucha spots. This match also featured some “drunken lucha” by my boy JT Kasin, which was a lot of fun. There was a great series of dives, too. The crowd was hot for the whole thing, thanks to strong work, and the very strong gimmicks involved. This was a great use of all 8 guys involved. No complaints here.
Rex Lawless d Robbie E
This was a Fusion title match. Before Robbie E was a TNA star, Rob Eckos was a regular in NYWC, and lots of other northeast indies. He never gets a fair shake from “big league” fans, because of the Jersey Shore gimmick. Anyway, he cut a good promo here, and had a pretty decent match with Rex.
What worked: Robbie is lots of fun. Good on the stick, good in the ring. He handled the crowd’s heckling beautifully. Rex still looks like a monster. I’m convinced he’s on his way to a contract somewhere. His chokebomb finisher looked DEADLY, and got a pop out of both Christin and me.
What made me angry: There was an awkward spot or two in this one, but it happens. Rex also came to the ring head-banging to some crazy metal song. I love metal. I head-bang. I usually follow it with Excedrin, because I’m the oldest 27-year-old alive. That’s not the point. What is the point is that I dig the style, but I’m not sure if crazy screaming-shredding metal and head-banging is as “big league” as Rex is going to be.
DJ Hyde came back out after this match, but wearing his other hat, as owner of Combat Zone Wrestling. He announced that CZW was making its Long Island debut on Saturday, November 1, complete with an Ultraviolent Death Match. Death match wrestling isn’t my favorite, but it has its place in wrestling. NYWC fans will get to see a different style of wrestling, and new wrestlers. CZW fans will see the NYWC Sportatorium, and probably some NYWC stars. Everyone wins. If I didn’t know any better, I’d guess that I’ll PROBABLY end up reviewing this show, for you.
The Juicy Product d Milk Chocolate
This was a tag team title match. It was great. Both of these teams are super talented, and super over. Anyone who has ANYTHING negative to say about pro wrestling, or tag team wrestling, should watch this match.
What worked: This match was great. Hard-hitting, with lots of very creative spots, a strong hot tag, and great hope spots for Milk Chocolate. Juicy Product had a GREAT counter for MC’s powerbomb/backstabber finish. Remember when I told you to buy the show on DVD? If the Stockade/J-Ro match didn’t give you your money’s worth, this one will more than make up for it.
What made me angry: This wasn’t the main event. It should have been.
Mikey Whipwreck d Mike Mondo
This was a rematch for the NYWC championship, which Whipwreck won last month. Big O was the special referee, which would be a factor from start to finish.
What worked: Creative uses of Big O, right up to the finish. They seem to be building toward a three-way for the title. Sometimes, obvious is a good thing – especially when it makes a lot of sense. In this case, it makes a lot of sense.
What made me angry: This was the main event. Not that they didn’t deserve it—these guys are (rightfully) at the top of the card, and fighting for the biggest title in the company. But as hard as they worked, and as good a story as they told… the crowd peaked with the tag title match.
Overall, this was a great show. I’m already excited to see next month’s show, and so is Christin. I’m not sure I’ll be allowed to go to shows without her.
NYWC continues to hit homeruns with several ongoing storylines, and started a few new ones. Keep an eye on RFVideo.com to pick up the show on DVD. I’ll update the post if I see some matches pop up on YouTube.