Written by: Jim
Smells Like Steen Spirit
August 19, 2005
Dino Winwood opens the show talking about the first ever Battle of Los Angeles. All of the first round matches are booked except for one. Before Winwood can announce Chris Sabin’s opponent, Frankie Kazarian makes his return to PWG. Thanks to the entrances being cut, it’s difficult to understand 100%, but I imagine Kazarian’s return means that he’s Sabin’s opponent next month. That or he’s taking Sabin’s place since Sabin wouldn’t be involved in the actual tournament. Kazarian trashes the WWE and it’s writers, but only comes off looking like a fool since he’s the one who asked for his release. When you’ve barely even been in the WWE (Although undefeated on Velocity) you don’t really have room to bitch. The entire segment is confusing and doesn’t really accomplish anything.
Gunning for Hookers w/Ed Powers vs Ronin and Disco Machine
I finally get my wish of Top Gun Talwar and Hook Bomberry having a tag name. Powers is the mastermind of a porn company. I believe this is his first and only time in PWG. What’s with Gunning for Hookers having one-time managers? Honestly, who wants to see a match where the best technical wrestler is Top Gun Talwar? It’s sloppy at times and goes on for far too long. These four should not even have ten minutes, let alone the fifteen they were given. The worst part is it makes the New SBS feel like the old SBS of being stuck in the opening match with the comedy guys. To continue the booking snafu, Bomberry forces Ronin to tap out for the win. Meh. 1 3/4 Stars.
Scott Lost vs Charles Mercury
THE CHUCK! I feel all warm and fuzzy inside whenever Mercury has a random match in PWG. Mercury has a gigantic goatee here tonight. Back and forth match with both men looking really good. There’s one spot when Lost goes for his trademark closeline, but either Mercury blocks it in an incredible manner or botches it. Either way, it looked really cool. While in a body scissors, Mercury pulls back into a creative variation of the Boston Crab. Just after the ten minute mark, Lost locks in a Sharpshooter and forces Mercury to tap out. The match loses points for not having the Superman Spear nor Mercury’s wickedly cool knee drop, but it was a solid effort for both men. Mercury looked like a mild star while Lost was able to win a hard fought match cleanly. 3 Stars.
Joey Ryan vs Rocky Romero
This match was made by Ryan’s request. Since he’s working the Technical Wizard gimmick, he’s trying to prove it against the best technical wrestlers in PWG. Since Romero’s last match was won by choking out Davey Richards, Ryan wants to prove his dominance over Romero. The crowd in this is GREAT. I can’t even hear Joey’s pre-match promo because they’re booing him so loudly. The crowd is never quiet, always cheering for Rocky and jeering for Ryan. Favorite crowd reaction would be when Romero is setting Joey up for the Lady in the Lake. The crowd chants “Grab his hand”, but when Joey does and ends up in a submission hold, the crowd fires back “You Dumb Fuck!” Joey once again cheats to gain the advantage by shoving Romero shoulder first into the ring post. While the ref is down, he shoves a chair between the middle and top rope. This plays into the end when Ryan predictably throws Romero shoulder first into that and rolls Romero up. Who said predictably is a bad thing? This ended up being exactly what it was supposed to be with Ryan’s Technical Wizard gimmick continuing to be a fraud title. 3 1/4 Stars.
Davey Richards and Hardkore Kidd w/El Jefe vs TJ Perkins and Alex Shelley
Richards and Kidd are teaming since neither likes Perkins. This begs the question of why Romero isn’t teaming with Perkins instead of Shelley? Even though it was a long twenty minutes, it feels like twice as long. That’s not so much of a bad thing though. There’s a definite “This is a tag classic” aura of the showdown. Granted, with the talent involved, there wasn’t any was it was going to be a classic. Still, I love seeing plenty of mat work in tag matches. The weak link in the match is Kidd though. Kidd may not be Big Show size, but he’s still a fairly large dude, especially in the indy’s. Yet, it’s as if he doesn’t realize how large he is. Kidd wrestles as if he’s the size of the puny Perkins. Mike Awesome may have flown around as if he was a junior heavyweight, but the guy also used his huge size to over power everyone. Kidd fails to wrestle how he should. It’s no wonder he didn’t last long in the WWE. For Davey, he looks really good in a tag team. Maybe PWG should *Ahem* put him in a tag team in the future. Davey picks up the win by nailing the DR Driver on Perkins to finally get a win over Perkins and company. With that, Davey’s first program is officially over. 3 Stars.
Random DVD note. For some reason, the DVD skips back to the beginning of the tag team match instead of going to the next match. I have to manually skip the chapter.
Kevin Steen (c) vs Quicksilver – PWG World Title
God bless PWG and their random backstories on their website. So, Christopher Daniels was originally scheduled to challenge for the title. That is until Steen’s hotshot lawyer made the case that Steen can’t defend the belt against new challengers (That PWG picked out) until AJ Styles gets his rematch. Since Styles wasn’t booked on the show, Steen had a choice of what he wanted to due. Steen choose to defend the title against Quicksilver, confident that he can beat him in less time and easier than Super Dragon did at the last show. And really, that’s exactly what happened in this match. Steen gets the win in roughly six or seven minutes less time than Super Dragon. Even better, Steen didn’t look as if he won by sheer luck. There were times in which Quicksilver looked good, but Steen was clearly the better men during the entire bout. Steen winning with the Steenalizer in the corner was one hell of a way to end the match. This is exactly what Steen needed to get his title reign off to a good start. You have Steen going over cleanly, it plays into the Steen/Dragon feud and the match was good. This is easily the best start to any PWG title reign since the second year began at The Secret of the Ooze. 3 1/4 Stars.
Christopher Daniels vs Chris Bosh
For the pre-match promo, Daniels brings up the fact that Scott Lost petitioned for this match so that Bosh can weaken Daniels before Lost’s match against Daniels at BOLA. Despite still being a heel, Bosh is so incredibly over. He blows away the Fallen Angel in his typical Bosh-ness style. Due to their heel tendencies, they both agree to have a respectable grappling contest. This takes up the first half of the match with the comedic spots of Bosh nearly cheating a few times. However, while suckering Daniels in with his trance, Bosh cheats first by gauging the eyes. Daniels fires back with the same heel tactic. Both guys end up working over the back of the opponent. At the end of the match, Bosh is finally able to his his ball shot, but as he rolls up Daniels, Daniels reverses it and wins with a handful of tights. I enjoyed the comedy, but with the match broken down into two smaller matches (One comedic and the other serious), neither felt truly complete. It’s still highly enjoyable though. 3 Stars.
After the match, Chris Bosh vows to win BOLA and to take the PWG Title from Kevin Steen.
Dino Winwood comes out with the PWG tag titles to present them to the new champions. Before he can, Joey Ryan runs out to attempt to attack Winwood. Dino channels his inner fat boy Goldberg and spears Joey. Chubby Jackhammer follows and Dino once again gets the better of The Technical Wizard.
2 Skinny Black Guys (c) vs Frankie Kazarian and Petey Williams – PWG Tag Team Titles
This was supposed to be Petey and Chris Sabin, but Sabin was injured at the last TNA tapings. Since it’s Petey’s birthday, he gets to pick Kazarian as Sabin’s replacement. Early on, it’s all comedy. However, unlike with the previous match, it’s not all that funny. It mostly centers around Kazarian’s dislike of Human Tornado’s hair. All of the comedy just stretches the match out too long. By time the serious action begins (Which is good), I’m already waiting for the match to end. Still, Tornado and Generico has some great natural chemistry so it’s easy to get behind them. However, this wasn’t the best way to start their title reign. When you compare this to Arrogance’s first title defense against Super Dragon and B-Boy, it’s not even in Arrogance’s league. Everyone gets in their spots before Petey Williams falls to the DND after hitting the Canadian Destroyer on Generico. 2 1/2 Stars.
Super Dragon vs Samoa Joe
Here we go, match three of their PWG trilogy. Both men hold a victory over the other, but both were by count-out. I don’t know whether this was done on purpose or not, but this show was held just days after the one year anniversary of the first Dragon/Joe match back at Secret of the Ooze. Kind of a cool little piece of trivia. Dragon makes the mistake early on of slapping Joe. Joe beats the holy shit out of Dragon, worse than when Dragon beat down Quicksilver after doing the same thing. Dragon manages to avoid being counted out a couple of times which plays off their previous matches nicely. Even though Dragon comes back, he’s never able to truly inflict much damage to Joe. His attempts of hitting a Psycho Driver is thwarted by his inability of picking Joe up. Instead, Dragon is forced to hit moves from the top rope, including a butterfly suplex, but none of those moves keeps Joe down. To add insult to injury, Joe changes up his power bomb into a STF combo by switching out the STF for Dragon’s own Curb Stomp. Joe puts Dragon away with a Muscle Buster to finally end their series with a true winner. It wasn’t bad or anything, but I’d consider it the worst match of their trilogy. Despite being prone to having too long of matches, Dragon ends this feud with a match too short. On the plus side, I did enjoy this more than I did originally. 3 Stars.
Smells Like Steen Spirit is sort of a bizarre show. On one hand, it’s mostly just a throwaway show to preview BOLA. On the other hand, it features the third and final match of Dragon/Joe. As far as matches go, that has to be the second most anticipated match of the year, behind the finale of Dragon/Steen. Most of the matches are good though, despite the two disappointments of the final two matches. Steen’s first title defense is a huge success while 2SBG could have been a lot better. It’s not a must see show, but it’s worth the 5 dollars that Highspots charges for it anytime it’s on sale.
Worth Checking Out
N/A (Everyone who has a good match has had better ones around this time period)
Gunning for Hookers vs Ronin and Disco Machine