Thursday, August 31, 2006

ROH War of the Wire II

1) Jimmy Jacobs vs. Trik Davis – 4
2) Jerrelle Clark & Davey Richards vs. Jimmy Rave & Sal Rinauro – 4
3) Nigel McGuinness vs. Colt Cabana – 2
4) Christopher Daniels vs. Matt Sydal – 6
5) Irish Airborne vs. Alex Payne & Pelle Primeau – 3
6) Austin Aries vs. Bryan Danielson vs. Homicide vs. Delirious – 5
7) Jay & Mark Briscoe vs. Roderick Strong & Jack Evans – 7
8) Necro Butcher vs. B.J. Whitmer – Barbed Wire Match – 7

I think that Trik Davis ran out of tricks. He must have as he lost to Jacobs in a match that won’t even be on the DVD release. Richards really impressed me with his style of wrestling. It looked to me like he was mixing the British mat style with the Japanese strong style and throwing a little bit of Brock Lesnar on top of that. On the opposite side, the team of Rinauro and Rave looked like crap, even though they were working heel. McGuinness and Cabana would’ve been better if they wouldn’t have done the cheap finish. Nigel gauding Cabana outside the ring at a 15-count only to roll back in at 19, thus giving him a cheap count-out victory was the worst finish I may have ever seen. Daniels and Sydal had a nice match that excited the crowd and made them forget about the insanity of no air conditioning in mid-July. Sydal looked better than the last two times he’s appeared in Dayton, maybe his stint in Dragon’s Gate had something to do with it.

With the show being in Dayton and all, naturally they had to get the hometown boys of Irish Airborne on the show. They squashed the team of Payne and Primeau who will most certainly be working at a video store in order to earn extra cash come the holidays. The four way match left a lot to be desired. I could tell that they really weren’t into it, probably because of the aformentioned insanity. The Briscoes and Strong and Evans had a fantastic, hard-hitting tag team encounter which was quite possibly the best tag match I’ve seen in a long time. The main event featured barbed wire tables, thumbtacks, and ladders in what was perhaps the sickest match I’ve ever seen. Both men went through a barbed wire table, Necro had tacks stuck in the bottom of his feet, and Whitmer damn near killed himself in a spot where he splashed Necro off a ladder who had a barbed wire board laying on top of him. The night was capped off by a late-night breakfast at Denny’s and casual conversation over coffee with friends. Truly a great night of wrestling.

Ring of Honor Redemption

I was actually at this show, and I have to tell you that being at an ROH show and watching one are two different things. Being at one the fans are usually incensed and genuinely love the product. Watching them, I usually have to stare at it like one of paintings where things are hiding in the background because the damned arena is so dark. And I by god hate their announcers. Anyways, to the show!

1 Ace Steel v. Matt Stryker v. Delirious v. Sterling Keenan-2
I didn't even remember this match, but anywhoo, it basically sucked. There was little communication in this; it looked like playtime at preschool. Everyone was doing their own spots and guys were actually colliding with each other.

2 Spanky v. Colt Cabana-3 This is what they call a "comedy match" Yeah, if this is comedy, I'm going to tell them to stop watching Bob Saget Tapes. Bar the fact that no athleticism was displayed, this was no funnier than seeing a grown man lick a dead cow's udders. Oh, someone did that. And you see where his career is.

3 Nigel Mcginnis/ Chad Collyer v. BJ Whitmer/ Jimmy Jacobs-4 This had the makings of a decent tag bout, but if you could believe it Collyer looked really off in this match. BJ and Hussss! Were keeping pace pretty well, and Nigel was doing his usual Euro routine, but Collyer looked bad!

4 Jimmy Rave/ Abyss/ Alex Shelly v. Austin Aries/ Roderick Strong/ Matt Sydal-6 The best match of the night. The tag psychology wasn't really on point, but the action never stopped and their spots looked crisp. This would be a standout on TNA and a showstealer on a WWE PPV opener.

5 Low Ki v. Jay Lethal-5 Some strong kicks from Low(we're cool, so I can call him that) and some horrible diving headbutts from Lethal. That would make Candido hurl in his grave, and he made Benoit sick with his shoddy ass dives. There was a crowd brawl to end this one, and they weren't breaking new ground at that point anyways, so an average match.

6 Matt Hardy v. Homicide-5 I'm not a fan of Homicide, and he was led by the hand by Hardy in this match. A guy I knew said Hardy couldn't work the ROH style, well that's because he's a smart wrestler. I think it's stupid to show everything you can do in one match and then do it every week. You'll never be able to satiate the casual fan's appetite because they're always going to want more. So, kudos to Hardy(who has one of the best punches in wrestling) and get back in the gym to Homicide.

7 CM v. Samoa Joe v. Christopher Daniels v. James Gibson-6 This match was long; and that was it's weakness. Gibson went out early from an injury(I saw him drop a rubber earlier that night in the lobby; I don't know if that was a spot, or evidence Rob Feinstein told him to hold), but after that we saw the usual from the other three. Daniels sold well, and went out next. Then, Punk played his best heel role( which doesn't hold a candle to AA! Just wanted to give him props), then lost to the returning Gibson with a top rope powerbomb that was half ass swank.

TNA Against All Odds ‘06

1. A-1 vs. Ron “Truth” Killings – 1
2. Lance Hoyt, Shark Boy, and Cassidy Riley vs. Diamonds In the Rough and Shannon Moore – 2
3. Austin Aries and Roderick Strong vs. The Naturals – 6
4. Alex Shelley vs. Jay Lethal vs. Petey Williams vs. Matt Bentley – 5
5. LAX vs. James Gang – 3
6. Sonjay Dutt and Chris Sabin vs. AMW – 4
7. Rhino vs. Abyss – Falls Count Anywhere Match – 5
8. Samoa Joe vs. Christopher Daniels vs. AJ Styles – 7
9. Team 3-D vs. Team Canada – 4
10. Jeff Jarrett vs. Christian - 5

A-1 and Killings lasts, I’m guessing, 90 seconds or so total – rendering it a complete waste of nearly two minutes, in which you could be doing something more beneficial with said time, like microwaving a burrito or washing your hands. The pre-show six-man tag is a cluster of epic proportions, featuring brutally makeshift teams, competing in the definition of a throwaway match. The first match of the actual pay-per-view, featuring ROH mainstays Aries and Strong, was one of my favorite matches of the entire show. Minus Aries’ blatant homosexual tendencies, and the Naturals’ innate ability to showcase zero emotion, everything else was perfectly okay.

The four-way match was full of flash, but offered little in regards to genuine substance. Still, if you’re going to watch four guys run through choreographed sequences for 10 minutes, then these four are just as good as anybody else. James Gang did their same exact shtick, that hasn’t ever worked for me, in a routine tag match with hopelessly average LAX. AMW had a lackluster night, and Sabin’s ridiculous trunks depicting a yellow alien head with an “S” carved into its forehead were so heinous I nearly lost consciousness.

Rhino and Abyss was your typical TNA brawl, but still admittedly kind of fun in its own perverse way. Abyss’ finale bump, falling through four tables, was a great rewind moment. The Joe, Daniels, and Styles match was about as good as you’d expect from these guys. Mostly solid and well executed, this bout was the highlight of a generally first-rate show. Team 3-D and Team Canada both looked exceptionally mundane, delivering one of the more forgettable matches of the night. Lastly, in Christian’s big breakthrough moment, he scored a victory over Jarrett. The match itself wasn’t too bad, minus the unnecessary ref bumps and other nonsense, and featured some good back-and-forth stuff. Unfortunately, it was mostly down hill from here, as Christian’s good guy title run was one of the most unconvincing and more appalling in industry history.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

WCW Bash at the Beach 1998

1) Perry Saturn vs. Raven – No DQ Match – 6
2) Juventud Guerrera vs. Billy Kidman – 5
3) Chavo Guerrero Jr. vs. Stevie Ray – 0
4) Chavo Guerrero Jr. vs. Eddie Guerrero – Hair vs. Hair Match – 4
5) The Disco Inferno vs. Konnan – 2
6) The Giant vs. Kevin Greene – 3
7) Chris Jericho vs. Rey Mysterio Jr. – 5
8) Bret Hart vs. Booker T – 5
9) Curt Hennig vs. Goldberg – 3
10) Diamond Dallas Page & Karl Malone vs. Hollywood Hogan & Dennis Rodman – 2

Raven and Saturn a had fun match to watch even though there were quite a few … ummm, well … mishaps. Tony Schiavone calling a table a chair and Saturn diving through two tables that didn’t break when Raven was nowhere in sight made the match. It wasn’t anything special but you need to see it just for the mishaps. One of WCW’s calling cards was the cruiserweight division and Juvi’s match was no exception. It wasn’t much because it went less than ten minutes but it was notable because it was Kidman’s pay-per-view debut. Chavo and Stevie was just pointless because the whole match was Chavo shaking Stevie’s hand and then submitting. The match with Eddie was a little heavy on the story side with Eddie working as the cowardly heel the whole match. Eddie won with a quick roll-up and Chavo shaved his own head.

Disco and Konnan was touted as a bonus match but failed to deliver and was quickly ruined with interference from Kevin Nash and Lex Luger. Giant and Greene was miserable to watch because Greene is not a wrestler, he’s a football player and Giant looked sloppy as hell. Jericho and Mysterio was a brief six-minute snippet of what they’re capable of. The highlight of this one was Mysterio giving Jericho a huracanrana off of a lifeguard stand that was sent up by the entrance. Hart and Booker should’ve gotten more time than what they were given. They seemed like they were starting to get comfortable working with each other until Hart decided to whack Booker with a chair. Goldberg squashed Hennig in what should’ve been another competitive match.

The main event was a disaster of epic porportions. Hogan worked a cowardly heel role the whole match and Rodman stumbled about and fell down while delivering even the simplest of maneuvers. On the flip side, Malone was passable for a person who was working his first and only pro wrestling match. Page had to work Hogan’s style which slowed the match down even more. The match itself ran about twenty-three minutes, which was about half of what Hogan had initally demanded for the match. Overall, this was a pay-per-view that had some potential but some of the matches, such as Jericho vs. Mysterio and Booker vs. Hart, could’ve and should’ve been a little longer and shouldn’t have been as rushed as they were.

WWE Summerslam 06: How would you book it?

The biggest party of the summer. That had to have been backstage where the new "divas" initiation was first finding Viscera's dick, and then sucking McMahons' while he laughed at last week's TNA PPV, which was playing in Hogan's dressing room, where he was booking himself to steal the title at the end of the show from Edge, who was beating Lita's titties off of a metal ladder in the utility room, where Eugene was crying himself to sleep on Sabu's new home, which RVD was smoking pot in, which HBK was chastising while looking at HHH's ass, as he was firing William Regal for punching him too hard, who was doing crack and heroin at the same time in two different orifices, and Finlay's leprecauhn laughed as he fucked the new diva's dirthole while eating nachos from Mae Young's cleavage. Now that's a party.

1 Chavo Guerrrero v. Rey Mysterio- 4
What Happened: A decent match featuring a sagging Vickie Guerrero. I hate this whole angle. These two can have great matches; they don't need this shit.
WWJD: They would've made up before the match, announced they were doing the match to honor Eddie and they were never going to mention him in storyline again. And then they would tell the script writers to suck their juevos.

2 Big Show v. Sabu-2
What Happened: Show retained in a match that resembled a drunken family picnic gone wrong. It was a table breaking display that featured a few stiff chair shots by Sabu
WWJD: Show goes over still, but less garbage. I would've kept it short and sweet, and hopefully stiff. Next time Sabu botches a spot during it and breaks character mid-spot, he has to join the McMahon kiss ass club with barb wire.

3 Randy Orton v. Hulk Hogan-2
What Happened: Hogan hobbled around the ring and performed the very minimum required of him. Orton hit one nice dropkick before Hogan went over.
WWJD: Crucified Hogan, just kidding, but Orton would've won, much to the dismay of the bi-partisan Hogan crowd. Hogan looked like he got an ass-cial on his head.

4 Ric Flair v. Mick Foley-7 What Happened: These guys had one more run at a big time marquee match. It was memorable and very violent. They both showed that it takes guts to get glory, and they are both more talented than half of the WWE roster.
WWJD: I thought a Foley win would be nice for him, although I couldn't see Flair giving up. I didn't like the way Foley did either, and would've liked to seen it given more time, but it takes it's place among brutal WWE encounters.

5 Booker T v. Batista-2
What Happened: Both men bumped awkwardly for each other, and Batista eats up precious TV time that could be given to any slutty, big breasted Diva that had about as much talent. And I bet she could execute a decent powerbomb.
WWJD: Booker defiinitley deserved to win, not a DQ finish. I used to be a fan of the character of Dave Batista, the nice guy who was strong and muscular, but he has no fan base left and let's face it, the guy couldn't wrestle his way out of a wet paper bag. And could somebody show him how to do a fucking powerbomb! Learn your god damned finish before you make it to PPV! Please

6 McMahons v. D-X-2
What Happened: A lot of interference, not as much blood, or weapons as I expected and a much lower grade than usual.
WWJD: DX, in concept is a great idea and was really cutting edge in it's day. I think it has a market to get over now as well, but there's nothing on RAW for either of them to do as a unit. The McMahon feud is running it's course, and frankly anything that puts the McMahon's on my TV, I'm going to hate it. So, yeah, I would have put DX over, but they need to find a new hobby, like not using up one-third of the segments on RAW

7 Edge v. John Cena-6
What Happened: You may be surprised by my grade, but they pulled off a really good match. This is the only match that went above my expectations. The finish was good and the heat for it was intense. Cena was being booed for the beginning of the match, but his fans picked up. WWJD: I would've had Cena winning, but after watching it, I actually think they did the right thing. Cena was not as over in his hometown as I would've thought, and Edge kept him inside his limits. I enjoyed the match as most of their other ones, but it wasn't exceptional and as far as the marquee PPV #2, could have delivered a lot more.

Feel free (if anyone is reading) to send your How would you Book it? To me, Brian, or Adam of any show that we review (I didn't really ask them if they would care, but I'm guessing they would find it interesting) and keep on fighting the good fight (or turning the channel when the Diva Search is on; it's all the same pot of chili)

WWE Summerslam '06

1. Rey Mysterio vs. Chavo Guerrero - 4
2. Sabu vs. Big Show - 2
3. Randy Orton vs. Hulk Hogan - 3
4. Ric Flair vs. Mick Foley - I Quit Match - 7
5. Booker T vs. Batista - 3
6. Degeneration X vs. Vince and Shane McMahon - 3
7. John Cena vs. Edge - 5

One of WWE’s biggest pay-per-views of the year didn’t live up to its spectacular hype. On paper, it showcased a lot of big matches; but in reality, with a less than enthusiastic audience and some sub par performances, it was largely a disappointment. Rey and Chavo wasn’t bad throughout most of its duration, with the exception being Chavo’s occasional nonexistent selling of Rey’s offense. It was marred by interference, which furthered a disgraceful storyline that’s profiting over a dead man’s legacy. Sabu and Big Show was so unbelievably sloppy and one of the biggest insults to hardcore wrestling I’ve yet to see with my own eyes. Sabu recklessly went from one botched spot to the next, not giving credibility to any of them. Their finish was ruined by poor execution, as Sabu clumsily ruined what could have been an interesting table spot, and was then subsequently slammed through a second table in lackadaisical fashion.

Hogan’s hobbled attempts at wrestling didn’t satisfy me. What little selling or psychology featured in this tiresome bout was too over-the-top to be even halfway plausible. Hogan was in no condition to work, and Orton’s certainly not yet talented enough to carry such a load on his young shoulders. Flair and Foley was barbaric, and while the action and pacing were void of logic and downright questionable at times, you still have to applaud both men for so savagely brutalizing each other for our entertainment. At this point in their respective careers, neither needs to subject themselves to such torture, but did so willingly in easily the most memorable match on the show. Flair looked more like a bulletin board than a human, after landing in thousands of thumbtacks; Foley also took his share of punishment, bleeding profusely from his head, chest, and arm.

Booker T and Batista was a downright awful match. Not even the experienced Booker could save this heaping pile of feces. Batista looked foolishly amateur here, especially when he nearly dropped Booker during a post-match powerbomb. The DX and McMahon angle-heavy bout featured nearly a dozen run-ins, which automatically leads me to suggest ignoring any urges of ever seeing it. Vince looked especially lethargic, even making a double-clothesline seem like too much work for him to handle. The main event wasn’t especially memorable, which is what hurt it most, being that it was a main event of a major show. It lacked the intensity and energy that could have catapulted it into the realm of worthwhile, but instead stayed muddled in mediocrity. The crowd finally came alive near the end – and the finish, seeing Cena carry both Edge and Lita on his shoulders, only to have Edge escape and cheat to secure a victory after a nasty shot to the back of Cena’s head while wearing brass knuckles, was admittedly kind of cool. This wasn’t bad, but I feel the two of them have a really solid twenty-minute match in them, we just haven’t seen it yet.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

WCW Bash at the Beach 1995

1) Sting vs. Meng – 6
2) Paul Orndorff vs. The Renegade – 3
3) Hacksaw Jim Duggan vs. Kamala – 2
4) Diamond Dallas Page vs. Dave Sullivan – 3
5) The Nasty Boys vs. Harlem Heat vs. The Blue Bloods – Triangle Match – 5
6) Ric Flair vs. Randy Savage – Lumberjack Match – 6
7) Hulk Hogan vs. Vader – Steel Cage Match – 5

Sting and Meng had a solid opener which featured Meng getting some good offense in. Suprisingly, the match went about 15 minutes when I figured that they would keep everything short and sweet being that they were outside on a beach. Yes, you read that right. This show was actually held on a beach in front of a few thousand people. Anyway, back to the matches. Renegade’s dropkicks looked like shit and Orndorff didn’t sell a damn thing. He did, however, take a crazy bump off the platform which the ring was on into some sand. My only question is why, in their infinite wisdom, did they put Renegade over Orndorff? Duggan looks the exact same now as he did ten years ago with the same gimmick he’s been doing for the last twenty. His match with Kamala was slow, sloppy, and prodding and was about what you would expect from them. DDP and Sullivan was just that bad and isn’t even worth writing about. Thus far, except for the opening bout, it looks like the WCW brass just closed their eyes and threw darts to choose the matches.

The triangle match was pretty cool and I believe that it was the first time that the concept was used in a tag team environment. There was a neat video before the match which featured the Blue Bloods touring Hollywood and Bobby Eaton finding a knife in the bushes at OJ’s house. The finish was interesting as well but got lost in the shuffle as it happened so fast you missed it. Flair and Savage tried to re-create their match from WrestleMania in 1992 but failed miserably. Flair took some pretty daring bumps such as a suplex to the outside and a backdrop over the top rope into Brian Knobbs. Those bumps alone are worth watching the match. Hogan and Vader had a basic cage match which featured Hogan putting on Vader’s headgear and headbutting him with it. After the match, Flair ran in and yelled at Vader. Vader chased him up the cage and Flair took the bump of the night when he jumped fell off the top of the cage. While the card itself wasn’t spectacular, the environment which made up the show and some of the crazy video packages make this worth searching out.

WWE Amargeddeon '03

"The end is here!" If they don't stop playing that (insert expletive; preferably the one starting with fuck and ending with -ing here) I'm going to take Stacy Kiebler and beg her to do a table dance for me and then get escorted from her hotel where I followed her back to after a show.

1 Booker T v. Mark Henry- 5- This was a good ass match, Suckaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! And Mark Henry was in it? Suckaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! God that is fun to say! No wonder he's so over! Booker T is one of the most under utilized guys in WWE. He could be a main eventer but they don't use him. This could have been Henry's finest performance. One thing I noticed is that he looked very comfortable in the ring and at lot of times, he doesn't. These guys have two different styles and you wouldn't think they would mesh well, but I didn't think Jello and cheese did either until I tried it, but well, it made me sick so bad example. But, the match worked.

2 Randy Orton v. Rob Van Dam- 7- Wow! RVD and Orton, another mis match, two conflicting styles, but they blended so well. If this match were food, I hope I would get some on my fingers, so I could lick it off. One little teeny complaint that didn't take away from the match, but also didn't add to it was Mick Foley as referee. I think Orton is phenomenal and of all the wrestlers that came out of OVW in the last few years, he has the most potential, as far as in-ring competitor and I think his old school style helped ground RVD.

3 Chris Jericho/ Christian v. Lita/ Trish Stratus- 3- Jericho looked like a mopey alley cat begging for some milk. I don't know if Trish was lactating or not, but if she was, she could feed Jericho's whole family. The girls pulled off some decent spots and the guys were selling big for them, but also returned the receipt. There were a few clotheslines that were fun to watch.

4 Shawn Michaels v. Batista-6- Michaels can work with big men like nobody's business. He made Dave look competent and that's saying a lot. He sold big for him and the finish was so hot, it made Halle Berry's topless scene in Swordfish look like a mackerel.

5 Maven v. Matt Hardy-0- a throw away to put over Batista. Although I liked the fire they had because they just started their match on the outside of the ring since Batista was holding the ring hostage, like the cast of the Sopranos wanting more money for the last season and now it wasn't the last season, but maybe this season is but they haven't really said, but anyways, I predict Tony gets whacked by one of his own guys in the last episode. Just putting it out there.

6 La Resistance v. Hurricane/ Rosey v. Cade/ Jindrak v. Val/ Storm v. Dudleys v. Steiner/ Test v. Flair/ Batista- 4- As a whole, this match was decent, but parts were pretty good and parts were pretty not so good. I enjoyed Val and Storm as a team and La Resistance looked pretty good too, but this was the Dudleys decline, you know when they just didn't care about how their matches looked. Yeah, it was like that.

7 Molly Holly v. Ivory- 1- I didn't know Ivory was still on the pay roll. How old is she anyways? She dresses like a skeeze, but she has the face of a grandmother. This match was slop.

8 Kane v. HHH v. Goldberg-3- The crowd declined in interest as the show went on, so there was no reaction in this one. This three guys don't look good together, nor alone for that matter, so why do it? It just seemed a vehicle to give HHH the belt back. I didn't like it.

WWE Armageddon ‘03

1. Booker T vs. Mark Henry – 6
2. Randy Orton vs. Rob Van Dam – 7
3. Christian and Chris Jericho vs. Trish Stratus and Lita – 3
4. Shawn Michaels vs. Batista – 5
5. Maven vs. Matt Hardy – 0
6. La Resistance vs. Hurricane and Rosey vs. Mark Jindrak and Lance Cade vs. Lance Storm and Val Venis vs. Dudley Boyz vs. Scott Steiner and Test vs. Ric Flair and Batista – Tag Team Turmoil – 4
7. Ivory vs. Molly Holly – 2
8. Kane vs. Goldberg vs. Triple H – 4
9. DVD Bonus: Jon Heidenreich vs. Rico – 1

Booker T and Mark Henry was so much better than it had any right being; I upped its score from the original mark I gave it, because how surprisingly satisfying it was. Following the opener, Orton and RVD performed near the top of their capabilities, having the undisputed match of the show. Things were off to a great start – would this trend continue?

The male versus female tag team bout wasn’t entirely bad, and about as good as could be expected. The women worked stiff, connecting with some decent shots; the worse thing about the match was Christian’s comical bumps, giving the match even less credibility. Shawn’s accustomed to working with larger guys, and is capable of carrying big stiffs to decent matches when he feels up to the challenge. He lead the green rookie through a match that showcased Batista’s limited strengths, in effect hiding his weaknesses, the biggest being that at this point he could barely wrestle his minuscule penis out of his trunks, let alone craft a believable wrestling match.

Maven and Hardy was a match signed earlier that night, and one I was interested in seeing come to fruition. Instead, it lasted all of a few seconds, before Batista, who was lurking at ringside, destroyed both competitors. The massive tag team fiasco worked on some levels, even if it was sloppy and unorganized. I could have also done without seeing Batista involved in a third match, but the writers had different plans, putting the titles on Batista and Flair in a reign that amounted to absolutely nothing.

Ivory and Molly was the most forgettable match of the show, a quick throwaway bout that nobody remembers. At this point, I’d rather watch Ivory sweep a Long John Silver’s restaurant with her tongue than attempt holding onto a wrestling career. I was curious and eager to see the main event, just because it had so many combustible elements in it. Yes, it was a train wreck of a match, but still entertaining in its own right. They totally botched the way they utilized Goldberg in WWE, and it’s interesting to watch the matches from his short stint there in retrospect. The DVD bonus match is a complete squash, that doesn’t even last two minutes. Ultimately, this show was better than I’d anticipated, as even some of the poorer matches were still entertaining. I don’t think that your collection will be hurting without it, but overall, we had a lot of fun watching this DVD and you’d likely do the same.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

TNA Hard Justice ‘06

1. Ron "Truth" Killings vs. A-1– 1
2. Sonjay Dutt and Cassidy Riley vs. Jimmy Jacobs and El Diablo – 1
3. Eric Young vs. Johnny Devine – 3
4. Chris Sabin vs. Alex Shelley – 4
5. Brother Runt vs. Abyss – 5
6. Samoa Joe vs. Monty Brown vs. Rhino – Falls Count Anywhere Match – 7
7. Gail Kim vs. Sirelda – 2
8. Petey Williams vs. Jay Lethal vs. Senshi – 6
9. AJ Styles and Christopher Daniels vs. L.A.X. – 5
10. Jeff Jarrett vs. Sting – 2

Killings and A-1 was short and abysmally bad. A-1 looked like he should have stretched before the match; his movements were stiffer than Vince McMahon’s cock after Stephanie sucks it. He bumps so awkwardly that he’s destined the have a career plagued with injuries – although I don’t see him wrestling for far too much longer. The tag team match was everything I don’t like about wrestling; it was flashy without substance, it was an athletic event void of any effort, and a story sans believability. Jacobs’ debut for TNA was about as unmemorable as his first foray into the receiving end of anal sex, which by the way, came at the bequest of former ROH owner Rob Feinstein to help secure Jimmy a job. I recently met Jacobs at a show and politely asked him to share his thoughts on getting his skull crushed by an Eddy Guerrero brainbuster; his curt response was insulting and I hope he suffers a career-ending injury very soon.

Young and Devine was alright until a fire occurred in the rafters of the building, followed by the entire arena being filled with the contents of a multitude of fire extinguishers. Devine busted out a couple nifty spots, but the match will only likely be recalled due to the heinous act of negligence by the TNA crew. Subsequently, local firemen evacuated the building, and for forty-five minutes pay-per-view viewers like yours truly, were forced to watch a truly terrible Sting video segment again and again. The show continued eventually, with Sabin and Shelley. These two gifted workers had a match below their standard work, although you can’t totally blame them, as due to the blazing inferno fiasco, the crowd was absolutely did for this.

Runt and Abyss actually had a pretty good hardcore bout, given the size difference and the silent crowd obstacle, and I was pleased. Runt took some especially nasty bumps; including having his forehead stomped into a huge pile of thumbtacks. I also enjoyed the three-way match, which was a wild brawl and a lot of fun to behold. I don’t particularly fancy Rhyno’s work, and Joe was intense as always, but the wild card was Monty Brown whom delivered his share of the awesomeness. See, Brown is usually squashing enhancement talent, but for the first time, here he’s in there with two big boys who will gladly oblige smashing his face. I think it brings the best out of the naturally competitive Brown, as went toe-to-toe with two of TNA’s toughest.

For some perverse reason, I was looking forward to the women’s match. Unfortunately, it sucked dong. I don’t know how they could have possibly had a match worse than the usual WWE women’s fare, but they found a way. The second three-way was the best-wrestled bout of the evening; the only thing it suffered from was lack of emotion. I dig Senshi and his intensity, and tend to find Petey pretty grand, as well. They did some neat stuff, but it didn’t generate a lot of feel feeling or interest. The tag team match was a bit of the opposite, getting the crowd riled up a bit, but the proficiency of the wrestling was largely mediocre. The usually solid Daniels seemed a tad off, and Styles wasn’t as phenomenal as he touts himself to be. Hernandez, whom I haven’t seen much of, looked pretty fired up and impressive. He mixes strength and agility well, much akin to Ahmed Johnson and Brock Lesnar before him.

Jeff Jarrett and Sting was a major disappointment. As I stated to my friends while watching this, it’s obvious that the backstage hierarchy didn’t have much faith in these two putting on a good match; that’s evidenced by them turning it into largely a tame crowd brawl, void of the excitement and energy a main event should produce. By the end, we saw Christian get heavily involved, and turn heel in one of the most obvious swerves in recent memory. It’s like the writers rolled their twelve-sided dice and landed on “How To Ruin A Major Show”, sat puzzled briefly, and then developed this insipid mess.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

TNA Hard Justice 2006

The roof … the roof … the roof is on fire!!!

1) Eric Young vs. Johnny Devine – 3
2) Chris Sabin vs. Alex Shelley – 4
3) Brother Runt vs. Abyss – 4
4) Samoa Joe vs. Monty Brown vs. Rhino – Falls Count Anywhere Match – 7
5) Gail Kim vs. Sirelda – 3
6) Petey Williams vs. Jay Lethal vs. Senshi – 5
7) A.J. Styles & Christopher Daniels vs. LAX (Homicide & Hernandez) – 6
8) Jeff Jarrett vs. Sting – 1

Ok, so maybe that tag line wasn’t orignal, but it was pretty much handed to me so I had to use it. Anyway, Young and Devine had a pretty decent match but the smoke from the fire extinguishers really ruined any chance it had of getting a high score. I’m sure they’ll act like the match never happened and totally redo it on Impact. After a near 45-minute delay, the show resumed with Sabin and Shelley having a decent but forgettable match. The problem wasn’t the in-ring action, it was that the crowd was so totally dead after the delay, they never really got excited until the falls count anywhere match. Runt got destroyed, as was expected, in a pretty standard match that featured him going forehead first into a pile of tacks. The three-way match with Joe was fun to watch, albeit sloppy at parts. Rhino attempted a gore on the stage but Brown sidestepped him and he flew off and through two tables in a crazy spot. Joe topped it though when he STO’ed Brown through a table from the stage. This was a really fun match to watch. Gail and Sirelda should’ve been cut instead of the four corners tag as I probably couldn’t tell you a thing that happened during it. The best way to describe it would be … oh, what’s that word … ah yes … filler!

The second three way dance of the evening wasn’t as good as it could’ve been. I don’t know if it was because they were mailing it in because of the earlier mishap or what but nothing really seemed to click. Granted, there were some cool spots and Petey worked a new submission I’d never seen before. It worked and post-match saw the start of a possible program between Petey and Lethal. The best way to describe the tag title match would be to compare it to a bowl of soup. The bowl of soup itself is just fine, but once you add crackers and stir it up, it turns into a big ol’ bowl of mush and loses its flavor. Analogies aside, A.J. and Daniels looked to me to have been a little bit sloppy while LAX looked good. Hernandez, who goes about 6’2” and 275, did a sick plancha over the top rope in the highlight of the match.

As for the main event, it was quite possibly the single worst title match I think I’ve ever seen. There were about three stories going on during the match itself and constant blatant interference didn’t help any. The lame brawling in the crowd also said that TNA didn’t have faith enough in their two biggest stars to put on a decent title match. The inevitable Christian heel turn was so obvious that Stevie Wonder could’ve seen it. The pay-per-view as a whole will forever be remembered for the fire and nothing else. Overall, this was a much better effort than what TNA has been putting out lately, now let’s hope that they can actually have a pay-per-view with no mishaps.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

ROH Weekend of Thunder: Night 1

1) Ace Steel vs. Jimmy Rave – 4
2) Angeldust vs. Homicide vs. Fast Eddie vs. Dunn – Four Way Scramble Match – 4
3) Dan Maff & B.J. Whitmer vs. The Carnage Crew – Boston Street Fight – 3
4) Chad Collyer vs. Low Ki – 4
5) Nigel McGuinness & John Walters vs. Samoa Joe & Jay Lethal – 5
6) Shane Hagadorn & Davey Andrews vs. The Outcast Killaz – 1
7) Austin Aries vs. C.M. Punk – 5
8) Ricky Reyes & Rocky Romero vs. Roderick Strong & Jack Evans – 5
9) Bryan Danielson vs. Jushin Liger – 6

Rave has been opening ROH shows for the last two years and he’s stolen just about every move you can think of. His match here was marred by about 15 minutes of totally incessant mic work by Prince Nana before the match even started. The four way match was pretty cool. At least they were trying some spots. Fast Eddie had a deck of cards on his trunks and I had flashbacks to The Gambler on mid-90s episodes of WCW Saturday Night. A fan jumped the rail after the match and got the ever-loving shit beat out of him. The street fight was convoluted at best with the highlight being Allison Danger’s failure to throw a garbage can over the top rope. I was expecting a classic between Collyer and Low Ki and to say that I was disappointed would be putting it midly at best. Their styles seemed to clash a lot during the match. Collyer likes to work a slow, mat based style, while Low Ki continually works at a break-neck pace. In between conversations about Batman, Superman, and The Real Ghostbusters, the tag match with Samoa Joe looked pretty good. For a much as I like Nigel, Joe is the first person I’ve ever seen to put the boots to Nigel when he does that handstand on the top turnbuckle. The following tag match with the Outcast Killaz was nothing but trash as they dominated the two rookies from the ROH wrestling school.

Aries and Punk had an acceptable match. While it probably would’ve scored higher if I had been there live instead of trying to fight sleep while watching it at 2:30 in the morning, it was a good match nonetheless. Aries worked Punk’s knee for most of the second half of the match and hit some cool moves as well. The ring lights went out about halfway through the match and everyone pretty much agreed that ROH was behind on the electric bill again. Reyes and Romero had a nifty little tag match with Evans and Strong but it wasn’t really much to remember. While watching the match, we once again agreed that Jack Evans is one of the worst spot monkeys we’ve ever seen. I mean, even his kicks are spotty … and you know this, man! God help me if Jack Evans ever does a promo again. Liger and Danielson had a decent match that would’ve scored higher had the damn announcer stopper with his continuous overselling. He totally ruined what could’ve been a classic match had he not been yelling out the moves at the top of his lungs the whole match. It was a bland capper to a forgettable ROH show.

ROH: Weekend of Thunder: Night 1- 11/05/04

1 Jimmy Rave v. Ace Steel- 3
2 Fast Eddie v. Angel Dust v. Dunn v. Homicide- 4
3 Carnage Crew v. Dan Maff/ BJ Whitmer( Chicago Street Fight)- 1
4 Chad Collyer v. Low KI- 3
5 John Walters/ Nigel McGinnis v. Samoa Joe/ Jay Lethal- 5
6 Davey Andrews/ Shane Hagadorn v. Outcast Killaz- 2
7 Austin Aries v. CM Punk- 6
8 The Rottweilers v. Roderick Strong/ Jack Evans- 6
9 Jushin Liger v. Bryan Danielson- 6

1 There was a look of bewilderment on the face of Steel in this match, which doesn't help fans connect with what you are doing, but he did have some neat submissions.

2 This four way was fast paced and with flaws. They tried some cool stuff, top rope reversals and such, but needed a leader in the ring and Homicide was not it.

3 The street fight featured more of the garbage that Carnage Crew is known for and less of what Whitmer and Maff are good at: hard hitting In-ring action. Let me stress "In-ring". Maff was pinned with two garbage cans hitting him, which the announcer referred to as a "Con-Can-to" or some other Dr. Suess bullshit word. Their announcers are the worst.

4 This I was looking forward to, but Collyer wasn't on at all, and Ki kept playing Larry Zybyzsko chicken shit stalling. Near the end, there was some cool reversals. I'd like to see a rematch.

5 Walters and Joe looked good together, and even Lethal and Nigel stepped it up in a well worked tag encounter.

6 This was a blow out, like a low treaded tire on a highway. I guess since their Outcasts, that's their motivation to be Killaz. Yeah, that must be it.

7 This match, I dozed in and out of, but I saw some good stuff and some really slow stuff. Too long for my taste for what they brought to it.

8 This match I enjoyed, for one I really do like tag wrestling the more I get to see of it. I feel depraved after watching WWE for years and not seeing anything decent. Evans, I felt really stepped up, which he has needed to do for a while even if all his stuff didn't work.

9 The dream match that ROH had been boasting. They worked an appropriate pace and hit all their signature moves including an awesome top rope brainbuster from the top to finish. Liger looked like he still had a love for the sport, which is more than I can say for his TNA outings.

Unscarred - The Life of "Sick" Nick Mondo

I remember seeing Mondo work a few years back and thinking, in this trashy world of hardcore wrestling, this guy's not so bad. After watching this documentary, I don't feel too different about him, but my opinion of hardcore wrestling has definitely been altered for the worse.

The DVD starts off with some background on Mondo, showing him as a teenager, filming pranks with his buddies like Jackass. We learn of his love of ECW, and desire to train and become a wrestler -- it's all downhill from there.

There are highlights of a multitude of barbaric and bloody matches. See, I don't mind violence in wrestling, but it’s become painfully apparent to me that what's most important to me in wrestling, that being psychology, is nonexistent in his bloodbaths. Gary Michael Cappetta said it best in his novel Bodyslams!, "Rolling around in barbed wire or broken glass reeks of desperation."

Example: The biggest instance of this happens when Zandig gives Mondo a death valley driver off of a fucking building! They land on a macabre construction of tables and hundreds of fluorescent light bulb tubes, even though they mostly land directly on the concrete. Now, here's the problem... that's not the finish of the match! After about 10 minutes of withering in sorrow and pain, they get up and get in the ring, and start running the ropes and working sequences like it was a regular match! Are you kidding me? That's insulting!

Mondo wizened up, and quit the business -- good for him. The other major bump that will make most wince is when Mondo, in his final match, takes a weed whacker shot to his stomach that rips the flesh right off of him. I don't see why he didn't just stop destroying his body, and start doing actual wrestling, as he obviously had some talent, but that's his decision to retire.

I can only recommend this DVD to bloodthirsty fans, but ultimately, not to wrestling fans. Another thing that bothered me were the bonus features, including an exploitive collection of trailers to insulting and scandalous titles featuring naive drunken girls, disenfranchised youth, gullible bums, attention starved teens, etc. XEG who produces all of this garbage, I never hand over and this message is for you -- fuck you assholes, making money off of other's stupidity and misfortune, you should be ashamed of yourselves.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Performer Analysis: Chris Candido

Chris "No Gimmicks Needed" Candido died due to a blood clot in his leg after surgery to repair from an injury that happened live on a TNA PPV on April 28, 2005. He was only thirty-four years old and had been a pro for nineteen years. He had wrestled in every major company in the US, including WWF, WCW, ECW, and NWA-TNA. He was trained by Larry Sharpe in 1985 and was long time engaged to Tammy Sytch, who also doubled as his manager in most promotions. This is his analysis.

1) Innovation-4- Chris Candido was never going to be a main eventer, but he seemed to try and bring the fans entertainment regardless. He was small by wrestling standards, at 5' 8, and 225 lbs., but he was determined to attempt to have great matches. There were flashes of brilliance from him, in places where no one was doing anything to stand out, like in the dying days of WCW, but after getting over in ECW, I don't think he was as experimental as before.

2) Conditioning- 6- Candido in ECW was in phenomenal shape. He had a great physique and could carry his size well, and work long matches with a variety of opponents. In WCW, he gained weight and in TNA, but he was always in great wrestling shape. Candido was known as a pain killer abuser in his later ECW run, which majorly effected his career. In 2004, he suffered a heart attack, which led to him trying to go clean from drugs.

3) Ring Skill- 6- I wouldn't say Candido was a show stealer, or a main event type caliber performer, but he could hold his own. I saw in his later days that he took control and lead matches, as opposed to in WWF and ECW, where I think he could slip easily into letting someone else lead the match. Plus, he was a great bumper.

4) Character/ Psychology- 7- Candido had a lot of charisma and claimed not to need a gimmick to get over. His gift was his comedic presence, and over the type behavior. As a bad ass, I didn't buy him, like they tried to market him in ECW. Candido had great facials and knew that he didn't have to go out and get put through six tables in a match to get over, even with the jaded ECW crowds. Sometimes more is less and one look can say more in a match than 2 high spots.

5) Interviews- 6- Candido was also a pretty good interview. He was rarely nervous on the mic, but my only criticism is that he didn't always have something to say and the people weren't 100 percent into his interviews. As someone who was never a big fan, I found myself appreciating what he had to offer as someone who had been in the sport for so long in his short lived TNA run.

6) Face/ Heel- 5- This category is always half and half. I give Candido a five because he was an exceptional heel, and not a very good face, although he didn't play one often, if ever. He was more like the scared heel and would play up to that role when necessary, something a lot of guys in this very macho business would rather not subject them selves to. It worked well in almost every company he's ever been in, but like I said, he has no face time and gets no points for it.

7) Basics- 4- Four seems low, but Candido was not the most technically sound wrestler around. Sure, he knew how to put on a headlock or do an armdrag sequence, but they weren't foremost in his repertoire. His punches and kicks also weren't that solid, but he could put together some sequences fairly well.

8) Fan Reaction- 5- Candido was one of those heels that got easy heat from the crowd, but I think a small portion of people always liked him. He got a little of that face heat that some heels get that always leads to an eventual face turn. So, he wasn't invisible to the fans, and I think he did a good job in playing to the crowd and making them feel they were involved.

9) Match/ Opponent Diversity- 2- Candido has had a storied career and has seen the highs and lows of this business, but let's quickly look at his career in terms of big programs. There's been none. He was mostly a tag wrestler his whole career. His biggest feud in the WWF was with Barry Horowitz. What does that tell you? In ECW, he and Lance Storm had some good tag matches, and a good feud to follow, maybe the best of his career. In WCW, he feuded with The Artist, but that was never followed through on. And in TNA, he was mostly in a managerial role. So, I feel that my score is justified.

10) Gutcheck- 8- Candido had many hurdles to overcome in wrestling. First and foremost, he didn't have the build to be a wrestler. But, he worked out and put on some muscle and size. Second, he had a girlfriend who was in the business and on the road with him. I don't need to tell you how difficult that could be. And third, he dealt with the same problems that a lot of other athletes deal with and that is substance abuse, but his family should be proud to say that he died clean and sober and over came all those obstacles to be remembered by the wrestling world as a great person and a great wrestler.
The PO: Thumbs Middle
Final Score: 52

WCW Bash at the Beach ‘95

1. Meng vs. Sting – 6
2. Paul Orndorff vs. Renegade – 3
3. Kamala vs. “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan – 2
4. Dave Sullivan vs. Diamond Dallas Page – 2
5. Harlem Heat vs. Bluebloods vs. Nasty Boys – Triangle Match – 4
6. Randy Savage vs. Ric Flair – Lumberjack Match – 6
7. Hulk Hogan vs. Vader – Steel Cage Match – 5

This event took place on an actual beach and is a great reminder of how ludicrous WCW as in ’95. Sting and Meng have the most quasi-legit match of the show; it was given decent time, plus, I fell out when Sting tried to splash Meng in the corner, and Meng stuck his leg up at the last second and mashed Sting’s face with his boot. Orndorff and Renegade was a pile of shit; no surprises there, but that doesn’t lessen the impact of witnessing a former superstar tarnish his reputation by selling poorly delivered power moves by a muscle head with self-esteem issues. The only memorable moment came when Orndorff oversold his ass off, bumping out of the ring, off the elevated platform, and onto his head in the sand. I’d rather watch Kamala and Duggan have a chicken wings eating contest than wrestle, but no dice, as they make us suffer through an uneventful filler bout. Dave Sullivan and DDP sucked fierce, but the video package that aired before the match was priceless, showing how DDP duped Dave into eating his own pet rabbit in a stew… genius, I say!

In what was billed the first triangle match in company history, three diverse teams failed to impress, in what was about as lackluster as getting Missy Hyatt stoned and nailing her. Savage and Flair have a lumberjack match, but since we’re on the beach, the rowdy group of men ringside aren’t adorned in the typical flannel attire, but instead opt for tie-dye shirts, looking like complete fucking idiots. Hogan and Vader went at it in the cage, which should have meant something, but unfortunately it was about as memorable as your first monthly rent bill. Vader was pretty stiff, but Hogan’s lackadaisical performance left me unsatisfied. After the match, Flair runs down and gets inside the cage to verbally attack Vader; once he pisses him off, he decides to leave and does so in the most surprising fashion… climbing to the top of the cage and falling off, nearly breaking his hip in the most unintentionally hilarious moment since Piper brained Snuka with a coconut.

Sunday, August 6, 2006

WWE Armageddon 2004

1) Rob Van Dam & Rey Mysterio vs. Kenzo Suzuki & Rene Dupree – 6
2) Kurt Angle vs. Santa Claus – 0
3) Daniel Puder vs. Mike Mizanin – Dixie Dog Fight Boxing Match – 0
4) Hardcore Holly & Charlie Haas vs. The Basham Brothers – 3
5) John Cena vs. Jesus – Street Fight – 4
6) Dawn Marie vs. Miss Jackie – 0
7) Kurt Angle, Mark Jindrak, & Luther Reigns vs. The Big Show – Handicap Match – 3
8) Spike Dudley vs. Funaki – 4
9) John Bradshaw Layfield vs. The Undertaker vs. Eddie Guerrero vs. Booker T – Fatal Four Way Match – 4

Ummm … yeah. Aside from the opening tag match that went almost twenty minutes, and was one of the best tag matches in recent memory, there was absolutely nothing to like on this show. Angle beating Santa Claus and a worked boxing match between two people who I could give less than a shit about? Honestly, who thought that was a good idea? If Puder could’ve cashed the checks that his mouth wrote he’d still be in WWE, and not dangling his dick in front of a prostitute on a street corner in Philly. Holly and Hass make for an unusual pairing if nothing else, but couldn’t handle the Bashams in a terrible undercard tag match. If Cena could show the intensity he showed in his match with Jesus (pronounced hey-zeus), I might actually care about what he does in the ring. Cena rocked Jesus with some certifiable stiff punches and some evil kendo stick shots. Alas, it wasn’t enough to save his sorry ass from another low rating. Dawn Marie and Miss Jackie had a miserable match with Charlie Haas as the referee for some stupid reason. The handicap match was an utter disgrace to all wrestling fans worldwide. By now, the crowd was totally dead and the only noise they made was a low hum. Spike and Funaki had promise but that was quickly ruined like most everything else that had been presented. Funaki took a couple of cool bumps and the crowd popped briefly for the title change and that was about it. The main event was a total clusterfuck of a match. Everyone seemed lost and didn’t know what to do. JBL botched powerbombing Booker through a table and was forced to do it with a lame elbow drop. Heidenreich interfered to keep ‘Taker from winning and JBL retained with a shitty clothesline. It’s a good thing I got this from the library because If I’d bought it, I would’ve smashed the disc with a very large hammer and great number of times. This show must be avoided at all costs!!!!

Bonus Match:
Paul London & Chavo Guerrero vs. Billy Kidman & Akio – 4 – This really had some promise as all four guys are incredible workers. However, just like normal, their talents are squandered on a five-minute encounter that didn’t do much to even excite the crowd.

WWE Royal Rumble 2006

A classic event featuring one of the most unique matches in the history of wrestling. Usually a scant undercard, so let's see how this one stacked up.

1 Finlay v. Brian Kendrick- 1- a brutal beating, a mugging, a quick, jaunty escapade of violent interaction. Kendrick sold decently

2 Cruiserweight Scramble Match- 5- a match that featured a willing and excited jamie knoble, a bland, alcholic binge Kid Kash, an eccentric Paul London, a hair thinning Scotty 2 Hotty, a pre-pubescent Sex and the City fanclub member Gregory Helms, and a Funaki. It was given a little time, and they did what they could with it, with a dull finish, but they had some good high spots.

3 Ashley v. Mickie James-0- Ugh!(to quote Charlie Brown) This was wretched! It fell apart before it ever began. Trish was the ref who looked like a zebra prostitute and added nothing to this match. Mickie wasn't trying to hold Ashley in place and she was allowed to botch almost everything she tried. I would usually never give a match a zero if it went a little bit and the athletes tried a few things, but this match went nearly eight minutes and it was scarier than hearing Star Jones wanted to do a nude scene.

4 JBL v. Boogeyman- 0- JBL was plowed through like a porn star in this match. Both mens punches were lack luster and it ended very quickly. I'm glad he's a jobber, of course, now he's an annoucner. I just wish he'd leave my TV.

5 Royal Rumble Match- 5- This was one of the more disappointing ones in a long time. Rey jr. was the winner and lasted through the whole thing, but he didn't do a damn thing the whole time. He laid in corners getting beat on, then getting up for elimination or high spots, like a damned stunt double. HHH also lasted through the whole rumble and he was just as unmemorable. Also, at least three or four people came in and were thrown right out, and we're not talking about the Bushwhackers; I'm talking about Ric Flair, Booker T, and Shawn Micheals. Some of the MVP's of the Rumble were Chris Benoit and Joey Mercury. They both lasted a while, and didn't slop around in a corner or lay on their ass, there were slugging people in the face the whole time. A huge disappointment. I would've have rather gotten an ass-cial.

6 Edge v. John Cena- 5- Cena looked like he just arrived at the Tom and Katie wedding in what Joey Styles quoted as saying "some kind of spaceship." I think he arrived from the planet Midcard. Anyways, no matter what I say about Cena, he gets heat. I'm talking Rottweitler in heat. The crowd was pretty buzzed for the match, but it was kept very basic, with no big risks. That was the negative side about it. I mean, Cena vs. HHH in the main event at Wrestlemania where the crowd was absolutely out of their minds crazy about the match works when the action in the ring isn't exactly "innovative." But, Royal Rumble crowd where the show has been pretty un-freaking-spectacular, i would think the intensity would be turned up a level. and Lita looked like a whore. so she looked like Lita.

7 Kurt Angle v. Mark Henry-4- Angle's worst PPV match. It was like all the spots from a twenty minute classic squeezed into a seven minute match with no heat and bad false finishes. Henry was just happy to have his tights on, and not in a seedy motel room with a plate of Chinese and surfing a self-masturbation chat room onthe Web. Then, there's the whole silly Undertaker entrance at the end. Ed Wood would've winced at the production values. Then, he would've put on a dress.

WWE No Mercy ‘04

1. DVD Bonus: Scotty 2 Hotty vs. Mark Jindrak – 4
2. Luther Reigns vs. Eddie Guerrero – 4
3. Spike Dudley vs. Nunzio – 5
4. Paul London vs. Billy Kidman – 6
5. Rob Van Dam and Rey Mysterio vs. Kenzo Suzaki and Rene Dupree – 5
6. Big Show vs. Kurt Angle – 3
7. John Cena vs. Booker T – 4
8. Rico, Charlie Haas, and Miss Jackie vs. Dudle Boyz and Dawn Marie – 3
9. JBL vs. Undertaker – Last Ride Match – 6

Jindrak and Hotty were relegated to Heat status, but still brought the professional wrestling, in a generally decently executed bout. Reigns and Eddie opened up the actual show, and although I take nothing away from Guerrero’s many accomplishments (championships, awards, cocaine snorting contests) I was disappointed even he couldn’t carry Luther to a halfway good match. Nunzio and Spike had a nifty little match, void of anything really memorable, but acceptable for what it was. London and Kidman stole the show, having an excellent match, with some ballsy bumps and exciting sequences.

RVD and Mysterio worked splendidly as a tag team, and put forth an earnest effort here, in a decidedly average match against Suzaki and Dupree, who’d rather be eating General Tso’s chicken and watching General Juggs’ Ass-Fuck-A-Thon #21 in their dressing room. As good as Angle is, his matches with Big Show generally bite – this was certainly no exception. Cena and Booker could have been a lot of fun… it wasn’t. The six-person inter-gender match would have only been watchable had the participants been naked, intoxicated, and roughhousing in a Tijuana alleyway. I guess I’d be down for watching Dawn and Jackie have a cum spitting competition, too; but, I digress. The main event I awarded decent points to, although, I’m not entirely sure why; outside of it having a big match feel, it wasn’t that good, and the ending, featuring Heidenreich kidnapping Undertaker was as atrocious as a Lawler nude self-portrait.

Thursday, August 3, 2006

WWE Judgment Day 2006

1) Paul London & Brian Kendrick vs. MNM - 5
2) Chris Benoit vs. Fit Finlay - 7
3) Jillian Hall vs. Melina - 4
4) Super Crazy vs. Gregory Helms - 5
5) Kurt Angle vs. Mark Henry - 4
6) Bobby Lashley vs. Booker T - 5
7) The Undertaker vs. The Great Khali - 2
8) John Bradshaw Layfield vs. Rey Mysterio – 5

The opening bout was a superb tag match, one of which you don’t really see the likes of anymore. There were a few high spots but for the most part the action was kept in the ring. After their loss, MNM split and started fighting each other. I don’t understand the logic in breaking up the best tag team in WWE today but, I’m not going to complain, London and Kendrick deserve the titles and I’m sure they’ll have a nice run with them. Benoit and Finlay just beat the ever-loving crap out of each other. It was a brilliant old-school style match that went a good twenty minutes. Just an awesome match with Benoit throwing Germans on the floor, Finlay hitting Benoit with stiff knees, and just good, all-around … gasp! … wrestling! I dare TNA to put on a match like this any day. The women’s match was about what you would expect from them. Helms and Crazy had a decent cruiserweight match but the division is going nowhere with Helms as a champion. Kurt Angle tried … he really, really tried to get a decent match from Mark Henry but, alas, to no avail. The action was nothing great but it should be noted that it ended in a count out. A count out, I say!!!! I haven’t seen a count out finish on a pay-per-view since the days of WCW! As if the match wasn’t bad enough, the finish alone killed it. Lashley could be a serious contender to any major singles title in WWE right now and is pretty much a cross between Monty Brown and Brock Lesnar. Booker has probably one more good run left before it’s time for him to call it a career. The match itself wasn’t the greatest and was pretty much what you would expect. The brightest spot was afterward when Lashley speared Booker through the throne that was setup near the entrance and Booker sold it like he had just been hit with a car. Hmm, what can I say about the “not-so” Great Khali that hasn’t already been said. He talks like Andre the Giant and wrestles like Giant Gonzalez (or El Gigante, for you WCW magnates out there). The really hard thing to swallow is that he beat Undertaker with a chop to the neck. Yes, you just read that, Khali beat Undertaker in a match so abysmal that hasn’t been seen since the likes of … well, the Undertaker/Giant Gonzalez feud in 1993. The main event was yet another match that had potential. JBL played the arrogant, ugly American heel the same way he did during his battles with Eddie Guerrero. I don’t buy Rey Mysterio as a World Champion because he’s only as good as the people he defends the belt against and defending against people like JBL, along with winning the title in a very brief triple threat match at WrestleMania, doesn’t help his cause one bit.

NOAH: Departure PPV July 10,2004

Tokyo, Japan Tokyo Dome Attendance: near 50,000

1 Haruka Eigen v. Mitsuo Momota- 2- The seniors tour kicked off this huge extravaganza for NOAH, which has slowly over the years become one of my favorite promotions. The high spots in this match consisted over which geezer could make the other geezer spit the farthest into the crowd with a chop. Yeah. And the fans bring umbrellas. Now, that's crowd participation.

2 Tamon Honda/ Jun Izumida/ Tsuyoshi Kikuchi v. Masao Inoue/ Kishin Kawabata/ Masaji Aoyagi- 4- This match was a slow paced one that never really got started before it ended. There were some nice submissions and a few double teams attempted, but other than that it was kind of a dud. The crowd seemed like they were patiently waiting for the rest of the show.

3 Michael Modest/ Donovan Morgan v. Kotaro Suzuki/ Ricky Marvin- 5- This match could've been a show stealer except for the complete confusion during the last five or six minutes. Modest and Morgan were doing some really innovative moves and getting stiff, and Marvin, who's a sensational high flyer, was also showing his rough side, but the match fell apart. It looked like really bad regional indy shit and it was almost painful to watch. Modest and Morgan went over and hightailed it out immediately to try and outrun the stink.

4 2 Cold Scorpio/ Richard Slinger v. Akitoshi Saito/ Makoto Hashi- 5- Another really hard fought tag match. All four guys were punching, and kicking like they were trapped inside an Octagon. Scorpio was the vet here and did a good job leading these guys to a very exciting encounter. 2 Cold was also looking real funky with some awesome top rope splashes.

5 Akira Taue/ Naoki Sano v. Daisuke Ikeda/ Mohammed Yone- 4- I guess the seniors get another round. I wondered if Arnold Palmer was in attendance, but actually it was Harley Race. He wears a sport coat like nobody's business. I know Taue is a legend, and I do like his work, but he just hasn't been at par with some of the others in the Japanese scene. Maybe that's why he's trapped in the undercard.

6 Naomichi Marufuji/ KENTA v. Kendo Kashin/ Takashi Saguira- 8- Unbelievable! This was a great tag match. The first few minutes they were all testing the waters and seeing what each other had, but they soon went all out. Kashin and Saguira were doing the "we don't like each other, but we could win gold" gimmick and did it extremely well. Marufuji and KENTA are going to be huge stars in NOAH if they groom them for it. They could main event with the big boys if given the chance. This match had depth and more near falls than Courtney Love with death.

7 Jushin Liger v. Yoshinobu Kanemaru- 7- Another awesome encounter. Kanemaru doesn't look like a wrestler, he looks like a pizza delivery guy, but he can swing. Liger was throwing palm heels like Randy Johnson throws a fastball. There was some great stuff from the top rope and the finish worked wonders. Kanemaru upsets Liger and takes back NOAH's junior title from the outsider

8 Yoshihiro Takayama/ Minoru Suzuki v. Takesihi Rikio/ Takeshi Morishima- 5- These big boys did not look ready to throw down. Not one of them was in really good shape. But, they were on a prime spot on the card and had to perform. So, what did they do? The only thing they could do and that was get stiff with each other. So many pins were broken in this match with brutal kicks and errant slaps. If these guys didn't like each other, it showed. And if they did, I wouldn't want to be their enemies. The finish came off well, too.

9 Taiyo Kea/ Keiji Muto v. Mitsuharu Misawa/ Yoshinari Ogawa- 9- The first meeting ever between arguably the two biggest stars from their former rival promotions, Muto of New Japan and Misawa of All Japan. The crowd was buzzing like a fucking colony of bees amassed inside the Empire State Building. They tagged in against each other pretty quickly and both traded their signature moves right off and then tagged out again. Great psych! God, they should be professors. Muto and Kea were great heels and pretty much dominated Ogawa, but when he finally made the hot tag, Misawa came in on fire and just beat their faces in. The match ended after all four men were just knocking each other out of the ring and traded finishing moves. A legendary match for not just Japanese fans, but all Wrestling appreciators.

10 Kenta Kobashi v. Jun Akiyama- 10- Here, it is. A 10. The first 10 in Never Hand Over history. The Holy Grail of scores. Why should this match of all matches watched and reviewed by not only me, but two other wrestling saavy enthusiasts receive this epic grade? Why should this match of all matches garner the otherwise thought of as unattainable score of 10 when so many before them have tried and failed? The answer is simple and yet it is not. First and foremost, I believe it important to put my stamp on these scores and show my range. I have given many ones and even more zeros, but now I've given a 10 and this match is my golden god.
The history of this match was epic in it's own right and had a great video package to go along with it. This would only be their third encounter, with both men winning one match apiece. Add to the fact that they were a super power tag team in All Japan for many years called Burning and they had the lethal combination of maybe the two most dangerous finishers in all of wrestling: the Exploder and the Orange Crush( which Kobashi no longer uses) Then, add the fact that NOAH's version of the World Title was on the line and it couldn't get any bigger than that. Now, the match itself. I want to go on record and say that this was probably the most physical match I have ever seen and I have seen a lot! Every chop, every forearm, every freakin' shoulderblock for that matter was given with 100% stiffness and it showed. These guys were sweating after only five minutes and then went another thirty onto that. Both men took a earth shattering, bone crunching, heart pounding, ground shaking superplex from the top corner buckle to the outside cement floor. I think there have been plane crashes with nicer landings. Then, towards the end of the match, both men trade finishers and get right back up and give another one. Both of their chests were beaten raw and I didn't even know how either could stand up. Kobashi,the Iron Man, in the end got the duke and I applauded. I was in my room at 3:30 in the morning but I applauded and thanked God and Highspots for providing this wonderful cassette to me. So, there you have it. I have reached for that silver lining in the sky, and it brings me the utmost pleasure to have given the first 10 for the site and the utmost pleasure to have seen that match. It makes me proud to be a wrestling fan. So, everyone out there, do yourself a favor and seek this show out at any cost.

(Editor's Note: This is Jessie's 50th wrestling review and I wanted to take a second to thank him for his contributions to my website. Jessie, you and I have been watching wrestling together since we were kids. We were such fans, we'd stay up all night creating games and recording audio shows about it. One way to look at it is that wrestling helped bring us together... and for that I am forever grateful. I look forward to watching many more bad Austin brawls with you in the future.)

WWE Judgment Day '06

1. Paul London and Brian Kendrick vs. MNM - 5
2. Fit Finlay vs. Chris Benoit - 6
3. Melina vs. Jillian Hall - 3
4. Super Crazy vs. Gregory Helms - 4
5. Mark Henry vs. Kurt Angle - 4
6. Booker T vs. Lashley - 4
7. Great Khali vs. Undertaker - 2
8. Rey Mysterio vs. JBL - 5

This pay-per-view was totally fine -- the wrestling was mostly competent, but, I didn't feel anything. Nothing was really compelling, or captivating in a way that'd make any of it memorable over a length of time.

The tag team match was good; both young teams have good chemistry and loads of potential. Finlay and Benoit could string together a solid match in their sleep, and didn't disappoint. Both matches were given at least 20 minutes, too; which was a pleasant surprise.

The women's match was a throwaway bout. Crazy and Helms had a decent match, but never picked up the pace nor busted out any of their best stuff. I was a bit disappointed in that regard.

Henry and Angle was better than their headlining match at Royal Rumble '06, but still not worth seeing. Angle lost by countout (lame!) and gave Henry an Angle Slam on a table that didn't break. Booker and Lashley was good, but being the finals of the returning King of the Ring, a little underwhelming. Lashley is still a little rough around the edges, but I still think they should have given this one some more time.

Khali didn't take one bump in the worst Undertaker match I've seen in a very long time. Khali sucks so much cock I’m surprised his voice doesn’t sound like Macy Gray’s. The main event occasionally felt like an important match, but it's difficult watching these two guys work together as their styles mix like preachers and strip clubs. Rey's title run was unfortunately not a success, which is a true shame. They should have booked him entirely differently; instead he was given the belt as a sympathy gesture due to Eddy Guerrero's death and then lost on several consecutive TV appearances.