Written by: Jim
All Star Weekend 2 – Night One
November 18, 2005
The New SBS vs TJ Perkins and Rocky Romero
The SBS is represented by the standard tag team of Excalibur and Disco Machine. It’s a good thing that they’re no longer perceived as a super serious team that is going to fuck people up because Excalibur starting the match by jokingly ribbing Romero before screaming in pain with kicks would ruin their perception. The early comedy is a lot of fun though. Some of the highlights include Disco Machine’s neck being draped on the bottom rope with Excalibur chasing Perkins around the ring. Of course, they keep having to step on Disco. It’s once the SBS changes their attitude to play up a serious match, things go down hill. The only positive moment is late in the match when Perkins has Excalibur trapped in the Figure Four Deathlock and Excalibur is screaming his lungs out. The finish comes when Perkins heads up to the top rope for a move, but the referee counts to ten. Yes…someone ACTUALLY got counted out for being on the top rope too long. What a stupid way to give the New SBS a much needed win. 1 1/4 Stars.
Petey Williams vs Chris Sabin
After being a team since their debut in PWG, Petey turned on Sabin at the last show (Straight to DVD). This is Sabin’s first chance at revenge. Before the match, Petey does his best to ensure that he gets booed. To accomplish that goal, he turns his back on Canada and vows to not use his Canadian moves again. Those moves include the Oh Canada! low blow, Sharpshooter and the Canadian Destroyer. It’s the last move that gets the boos. The match doesn’t have the intensity that you’d want to see in a former partners match, but they manage to have a fun match that keeps the fans interest. Sabin plays to the crowd by allowing kids to chop Petey whereas Petey tries to keep the heat by teasing moves, only to hit other ones. By the end, he’s ready to hit his new finisher, the swinging neckbreaker, but Sabin easily kicks out. Petey attempts to win with his feet on the ropes, but that also fails. A little story of “Can Petey win without his Canadian moves?” is created before Williams finally wins with his feet on the ropes for a second time. Petey really did a great job at creating a fun match, but one that kept his word in refusing to give the fans what they wanted. Thanks to their chemistry, this wasn’t too bad. 3 Stars.
Christopher Daniels vs Frankie Kazarian
Kazarian is still a good nine or so months away from returning to TNA, but this still feels like a TNA vs TNA match. Similarly to the previous two matches, there’s a lot of comedy. It’s a few minutes before the action even begins due to both men posing for the camera. Even though it’s not the match I was expecting, they produce a quality comedy match mixed with some solid wrestling. The best moment came on the outside as Daniels ducks a charge from Kazarian. While Daniels back is turned, Kazarian hits the ring post with his hands and falls down. Once Daniels turns around, he believes Kazarian is knocked out. Being unable to pick up the “Unconscious” Kazarian, Daniels rolls back in the ring to allow Rick Knox to count Kazarian out. Kazarian waits until Daniels has his back turned and sneaks back in to get a two count with a roll up. Based on the fact that Eddie Guerrero had just died earlier that week, I imagine it was a little tribute to him. Kazarian gets the win when he rolls through a flying cross body to get three count. 3 1/4 Stars.
Excalibur comes out to inform Super Dragon, Davey Richards and the fans that Gunning for Hookers are suspended for All Star Weekend 2 due to failed drug tests. As a result, they will no longer be receiving a tag title shot. Since Dino Winwood is busy preparing for his match later tonight, Excalibur took it upon himself to announce SDDR’s opponents for their now non-title match. Logically, he picks buddy Ronin and Super Dragon’s part time partner, B-Boy. With the New SBS getting a tag shot on night 2, Excalibur wants Ronin and B-Boy to soften the champs up.
Super Dragon and Davey Richards vs Ronin and B-Boy
The start of this match is just beyond epic. Due to Ronin’s association with the New SBS, Dragon and Davey instantly goes after him with Dragon killing Ronin with a forearm. Davey and Dragon takes their turn beating on Ronin on the outside. The one chance Ronin gets to chop Dragon, Dragon throws a chair at his face. Click here to enlarge Early on, B-Boy didn’t have a lot of reason to hate Dragon, but once Dragon begins taunting him with the middle finger, B-Boy’s ready to turn the intensity up to another level. Richards and B-Boy has an exciting sequence where they find out who’s the real man by taking stiff kicks to their back and forcing themselves to just endure it. This was legitimately shaping up to be a MOTYC. After, after the fifteen minute mark, the four no longer bothers to tag in and things just go down hill. They all seemed to be exhausted and only running on fumes. Still, they somehow made Ronin and B-Boy look like they could defeat the tag champions. If you hate Ronin, this match is perfect. You’re able to see Ronin getting his ass kicked, but somehow pulls off his best performance I’ve seen out of him. Major kudos to Ronin for all of the effort. SDDR gets the win after Dragon hits the Psycho Driver on B-Boy (On Ronin) and Davey hits the Shooting Star Press on Ronin. Cut seven to ten minutes out and Ronin would have a legitimate PWG MOTYC. 3 3/4 Stars.
Jack Evans vs El Generico
As expected, a dance off starts the match. Generico busts out the Worm to earn my vote. Also expected, there’s a lot of spots…like seriously, a TON of spots. The crowd (Minus one guy who attempts to start a “You’re both morons” chant early on) eats everything up though. However, due to having such crazy spots, they don’t always come off looking too pretty. Whether it’s awkward pauses or slight botches, you can find a lot of them in this. A basic problem I have with spotfests is that you’re bound to reach a point where pinfalls no longer matter. We’ve already seen so many crazy spots that could have ended the match, so the actual final spot won’t have the proper reaction. Sadly, they have the perfect spot with Evans hitting a beautiful top rope moonsault into a DDT that literally caused my jaw to drop. Instead of having that be the finish, Generico kicks out and Evans is forced to use his 630 splash to pick up the win. Probably the best thing you can do in such a spotfest is to keep it short. The shorter it is, the less time the viewer will have to grow tired of seeing spot after spot. At 18 minutes, this match is a little too long. Still, it’s non-stop action with a lively crowd. 3 Stars.
Bryan Danielson vs Jimmy Yang
This would be Yang’s PWG debut. He had only debuted in ROH the previous month and currently held the amazing record of 0-3. For the first time in PWG, Bryan Danielson really behaves like a heel. I suppose he sort of did against Chris Hero at Card Subject to Change, but it was played up all for comedy. Besides working on Yang’s shoulder, Danielson creates a story out of the “I have til five!” shtick. Every time Danielson would use the five count, the referee could get more and more frustrated. It even got to the point where the referee claimed that he would DQ Danielson if he did it again. Yang plays the role of the plucky underdog who’s nearly able to surprise Danielson with a loss due to all of Danielson’s talks with the referee. Danielson makes the critical mistake of going for his airplane spin (I counted 30 revolutions), which only causes him to get more dizzy than Yang. Yang nearly gets the win by countering Danielson’s superplex with a crossbody, but Danielson rolls through and holds Yang’s shoulders down for a three. The referee claims Yang got his shoulder up, but it’s apparent that Yang fucked up. Yang quickly pins Danielson following Yang Time. The fuck up at the end caused Yang’s big win to be a rather lackluster emotional moment. I did get a chuckle at the irony of Jimmy Yang being winless in ROH, yet he just defeated ROH’s World Champion. Danielson’s nearly incapable of putting on a bad match and this no exception. That being said, it’s a noticeable step below Danielson’s ROH Title defenses. 3 1/2 Stars.
Aerial Xpress and Dino Winwood vs Arrogance and Joey Ryan
Give it up to PWG, this has been a match they’ve been building this up for months. Thanks to Scott Lost and Scorpio Sky now being in a singles feud, this means a little bit more. Most of the match just features Quicksilver facing off against the heels since they were saving Dino Winwood for the end and Scorpio Sky and Scott Lost couldn’t mix it up much since they have a match on night 2. The real quality begins once Dino is tagged in after AXP are exhausted and selling. Dino goes through a Goldberg-like tear through Joey and Arrogance. Such highlights include Dino doing Trish Stratus’ Matrix-like duck and then killing Joey with a spear. The match also serves the purpose as the “End of the reign of terror” by Joey and Arrogance. Rick Knox allows Scorpio Sky to use a chair, but pulls it out of Joey’s hands to pay Arrogance and Joey back for all of the cheating. Dino gets the big win on Joey following the Mustache Ride. Everything is made to seem as if the good guys have won. Ironically, the real reign of terror has yet to star. As far as AXP/Arrogance battles, it’s their weakest match, but I had a huge smile on my face for all of Dino’s moves. The workrate may have not been high, but it was a ton of fun. 3 Stars.
After the match, Scorpio Sky uses the steel chair on Lost. He does it so many times to a defenseless Lost that you begin to feel bad for Lost. This may be a weird comparison, but Scorpio is similar to Anakin Skywalker in Episode 3. Dino and Quicksilver are losing their buddy to the dark side. Great job by Quicksilver and Dino during this beat down. They’re not high five-ing or celebrating. They’re looking on in shock, not sure how they should respond.
Kevin Steen (c) vs Samoa Joe – PWG World Title
This is all yet attempt by Steen to prove that he’s better than Super Dragon. Back in August, Steen pinned Quicksilver several minutes sooner than Super Dragon did on the previous show. Now Steen is facing Dragon’s toughest opponent to date, a man that he could never pin. Early on, Steen finds out the hard way why you don’t slap Joe. Joe murders Steen for the next few minutes. Steen next finds out why you don’t try to headbutt Joe. Joe’s head is far harder than yours. Steen finally finds a strategy that works by working over Joe’s right knee. Such a simple plan dramatically helps Steen stay in control for most of the remaining match. Joe has a few bursts from time to time, but Steen endures it. Finally Steen gets the surprise pin after countering a DVD into a crucifix pin. It may have taken Steen five minutes longer to beat Joe, but he actually pinned Joe. Unlike a lot of the other matches on this show, it didn’t feel as if this was given too much time. Steen was great in his game plan and all of his antics and Joe brought the pain. Easily Steen’s best match since winning the PWG title. 3 1/2 Stars.
For one reason or another, ASW 2 tends to receive a lot of hate. Sure, it may not have that MOTYC or those great matches that you’d expect from one of the biggest shows of the year, but night 1 managed to be a consistently good show. With the exception of the opening match, every match was at least good. You saw Ronin’s best match (Ever?) in a bout that blew all of my expectations away, another chapter in the AXP/Arrogance singles feuds and Steen one upping Super Dragon. Like I said above, most of the matches could have benefited from being a little shorter. Unlike at After School Special, having longer matches didn’t kill the show for me.
Worth Checking Out
Davey Richards and Super Dragon vs Ronin and B-Boy
AXP and Dino Winwood vs Arrogance and Joey Ryan (For Dino Winwood)
Kevin Steen vs Samoa Joe
TJ Perkins and Rocky Romero vs Excalibur and Disco Machine