Written by: Bob Colling
IWA-MS presents A Shot Of Southern Comfort
From: Highland, IN
Opening Contest: Eddie Edwards vs. Danny Daniels: Early on, Daniels works over Edwards with chops, but Edwards takes Daniels down with an arm drag a few times. Edwards hits a spinning heel kick for a two count. Daniels counters a hurricanrana attempt with a powerbomb. Daniels forearms Edwards followed by a dropkick to send Edwards into the corner. Daniels takes Edwards over with a straight jacket German suplex for a two count. Edwards takes Daniels off the middle rope with a sunset flip powerbomb. They trade a few forearms shots in the middle of the ring. Edwards backdrops and dropkicks Daniels followed by a tornado DDT for a two count. Edwards goes to the top rope trying for a moonsault, but lands on his feet. Daniels delivers a modified neckbreaker and finishes Edwards off with a piledriver. (**1/2. So, Edwards isn’t very well known as this point and it was likely just an extended showcase for Daniels. However, Edwards came across rather well and showed he has loads of potential.)
Second Contest: Rain vs. Sumie Sakai: Sakai gets a two count with a rollup, but gets decked by Rain from behind. Sakai drop toe holds Rain and locks in a camel clutch, but is unable to get a submission. Sakai is pulling Rain’s hair and switches each hand at the count of four. Sakai head scissors Rain. Rain gains control with a Boston Crab, but doesn’t get a submission. Lacey chokes Sakai from the floor while the referee was distracted. Rain gets a two count with a backbreaker. Sakai almost wins with a rollup and is met with a clothesline. They go to the floor where Rain tells the fans to move and she tosses Sakai into several chairs. Rain tries for a cover, but Sakai kicks out at two. Rain hits a fisherman buster for a two count, though Sakai really didn’t look like she kicked out at all to me. Sakai ducks a wild strike with an inside cradle for a two count. Sakai takes Rain over with a suplex. Sakai drops Rain over the middle rope before hitting a 619 and hits a missile dropkick off the top. Sakai goes to the top again and hits another missile dropkick. Sakai hits a top rope moonsault for the win. After the match, Lacey attacks Sakai for a few moments before Rain gets up and delivers a few shots. Daizee Haze and Mickie Knuckles run out to make the save. (***. I enjoyed this quite a bit actually. Sumie Sakai is really entertaining and fun to watch. Rain did a fine job, as well.)
Third Contest: Blackjack Marciano & Eddie Kingston vs. Chris Hamrick & Tracy Smothers in a tag title tournament match: Kingston and Blackjack attack before the bell sending Smothers to the floor. Hamrick arm drags both men before Smothers returns and jabs them. Hamrick comes off the top to hit a missile dropkick. Hamrick ties them up putting a dragon sleeper on Blackhack while Smothers had a camel clutch on Kingston,. Kingston shoulder blocks Smothers after returning to the ring. Hamrick superkicks Kingston, which got a loud pop. Hamrick gets dropped over the top rope and met with a kick by Kingston. Kingston keeps control on Hamrick with strikes on the mat. Hamrick fights off and comes off the ropes to dropkick both men. Smothers slingshots into the ring to dropkick Kingston and cleans house with strikes. Smothers delivers jumping kicks and a spear to both men nearly pinning Kingston. Hamrick is sent to the floor by Blackjack. Blackjack hits a DDT on Smothers for a two count. Kingston is on the middle rope but Blackjack gets sent into him. Hamrick leaps off of Kingston’s shoulders on the middle rope and leg drops Blackjack for the win. (**. That was a good finish and a decent overall match. Smothers and Hamrick are a ton of fun to watch. It’s impressive considering their age that they can keep going at such a high level.)
Fourth Contest: CM Punk & Colt Cabana vs. Chad Collyer & Nigel McGuiness in a tag title tournament match: Collyer and Punk start the match with both men trading arm control. Collyer arm drags Punk a few times and drop toe holds Punk to the mat. Punk nearly pins Collyer with a rollup. Cabana and McGuiness enter the ring to try their luck. They trade a few arm holds and it leads to them doing some comedy with middle fingers and whatnot. Cabana low blows McGuiness with the back of his hand for a two count. Punk enters the match and Nigel keeps control with a side headlock until Collyer enters to elbow Punk for a two count. Punk drives Nigel into the corner and Cabana enters to strike McGuiness several times. Cabana sends Nigel into the corner leading to a near fall. Punk works over McGuiness with strikes to the back followed by a backbreaker for a two count. Punk hits a slingshot senton from the apron. Cabana knee lifts McGuiness and keeps control preventing Nigel from tagging out.
Cabana locks in the Billy Goats Curse with Punk putting a camel clutch on until Collyer enters the ring. Punk drives McGuiness down with a back suplex. Nigel tries for a leapfrog but Punk collides with Nigel’s groin and they are both down. Collyer heel kicks Cabana for a two count. Collyer nearly pins Cabana with a somersault splash. Nigel forearms Punk sending him through the ropes to the floor. Cabana tries for a butterfly suplex, but Collyer breaks free with dragon screw leg whips Cabana. Punk hits a shining wizard on Collyer, as Collyer had the Texas Cloverleaf on Cabana. That allows Cabana to pin Collyer. (*1/2. The comedy aspect early on didn’t connect with me and the overall action was kind of lackluster for me, too. The last couple of minutes were solid as Collyer worked pretty well and seems to have won over the IWA-MS crowd.)
Fifth Contest: Puma & Ricky Reyes vs. Brad Bradley & Ryan Boz in a tag title tournament match: Puma and Bradley start the match with Puma delivering a few kicks in the corner followed by right hands. Bradley shoves Puma away a few times. Puma dropkicks Bradley on the knee and continues with a dragon screw leg whip. Boz enters the match to try his luck against Reyes. Reyes kicks Boz several times to get control of the match. Reyes dropkicks Boz and continues with a quick arm drag. Reyes nails Boz with a spinning heel kick. Puma enters the match and works over Boz with strikes. Puma controls Boz with a chin lock followed by an uppercut and a standing spin kick. Boz drives Puma back first into the corner and along with Bradley deliver several running boots to keep Puma on the mat. Bradley dragon screw leg whips Puma and stomps on the left knee a few times. Boz knocks Reyes off the apron to continue working over Puma in the ring for a few moments.
Bradley drives Puma down with a knee breaker and a dragon screw leg whip. Puma hits a springboard crossbody and tags in Reyes. Reyes hits a spinning heel kick on Bradley and an overhead suplex on Boz. Reyes plants Bradley with a DDT and Puma comes off the top to hit a splash, but Boz breaks up the cover. Boz plants Puma with a Rikishi Driver and Bradley clotheslines Reyes. Reyes saves his partner from a double team move and rolls Bradley up with a handful of tights for the upset win. Puma dove to the floor to take out Boz. (**. That has to be considered an upset in the tournament. They did a decent job holding my interest. They didn’t mention anything about Boz/Bradley splitting up, which seemed to be the angle at the last show.)
Sixth Contest: B-Boy & Homicide vs. Josh Prohibition & M-Dogg 20 in a tag title tournament match: All four men start brawling before the bell with Dogg dropkicking Boy once some order takes place. Dogg hits a standing moonsault and a back suplex on Boy. Prohibition drives Boy down with a vertical suplex for a two count. Prohibition tosses Homicide with an overhead belly to belly suplex and Dogg hits a somersault splash followed by a springboard twisting leg drop. Dogg works over Homicide with several strikes in the corner but Homicide gets an STF locked in moments later. Boy powerbombs Dogg over Homicide’s knee to keep control of the match. Dogg gets met with several running forearms and a running boot by Homicide. Boy delivers his trademark dropkick in the corner, too. Homicide gets a two count on Dogg following a suplex. Dogg takes a double stomp from the top and Homicide locks in a submission looking for a submission. Dogg gets ran over by both opponents and can’t tag in his partner.
Dogg gets worked over by Homicide in the corner with several chops. Homicide gets shoved off the middle rope and Dogg nearly wins with a crossbody. Dogg drops Homicide over his knee and tags in Prohibition. Prohibition cleans house with strikes. Prohibition heel kicks Homicide and all four men are in the ring brawling. Dogg takes Homicide out with a springboard moonsault on the floor. Prohibition and Boy trade forearms. Prohibition tosses Boy with an overhead suplex after a dropkick from Dogg. Boy kicks Prohibition and Homicide hits a cutter off th emiddle rope. Boy nails Prohibition with a shining wizard for a two count as Dogg broke up the cover. Dogg gets dropped over the top rope and Homicide has Dogg on his shoulders. Boy leaps off the top to hit a bulldog but Prohibition breaks up the cover. Prohibition takes Homicide down with a suplex. Dogg tries for a shooting star, but Boy hit a cutter in midair. Homicide plants Prohibition with the Cop Killa for the win. (***1/4. I was really entertained by this match and the finish was done really well and finished at the right time to get the full crowd reaction. I didn’t expect this to be all that great and it surprised me. These guys were probably underrated during this era.)
Seventh Contest: Austin Aries vs. Delirious vs. Jimmy Jacobs vs. Alex Shelley vs. Petey Williams vs. Nate Webb vs. Roderick Strong in an elimination match: Delirious and Jacobs start the match as they focus on some basic arm work at the beginning. They do some comedy with huzzing and yelling at each other. Delirious counters a head scissors attempt but Jacobs gets a camel clutch locked in. Delirious covers up on the mat and Jacobs is confused. Webb tags in and scares Delirious causing Strong to tag in. Strong forearms Webb several times but Webb comes back with a dropkick. Webb hits a springboard head scissors to take Strong down to the mat. Shelley tags into the match and Aries is tagged in, too. They lockup and remain on the mat for a moment before having a standoff. Neither man gets a clear advantage and they have another standoff leading to a handshake. Aries decks Williams on the apron and Shelley delivers a shot. Williams gets worked over by Aries and Shelley in the corner for a moment. Williams takes Aries down with a neckbreaker and clotheslines Shelley followed by a dropkick to Aries.
Aries trips Williams while on the floor and Williams decks Aries off the apron. Shelley counters a head scissors, but Williams takes Aries out on the floor. Delirious takes Shelley, Aries and Williams out with a suicide dive. Strong press slams Jacobs onto everyone outside the ring. Webb gets flipped over the top by Strong to again take everyone out. Delirious head scissors Strong and Shelley gets dropkicked in midair. Shelley superkicks Delirious before hitting Shell Shock to eliminate Delirious.
Shelley strikes Shelley before hitting a clothesline for a two count. Jacobs hits a Pedigree/UnPrettier combo on Aries and Shelley for a two count. Jacobs chops Strong a few times before going to the top rope. Jacobs slips off the top rope but still strikes Strong with an overhand strike. Jacobs tries for a Slice Bread on Strong, but Strong counters with a backbreaker to eliminate Jacobs.
Williams enters and is met with a few backbreakers by Strong before being tossed into the corner back first. Aries dropkicks Williams in the corner and everyone splashes Williams in the corner. Williams is lifted into the air and driven down by Generation Next, essentially at this point. Strong knocks Webb off the apron and Williams continues to get triple teamed. Shelley hits a double stomp and a dropkick to Williams for a near fall. Williams takes Strong down with a side Russian leg sweep. Webb nails Strong with a kick and a spinning Flatliner to eliminate Strong.
Aries nearly pins Webb after a brainbuster. Aries comes off the ropes to deliver a fist drop for a near fall. Shelley continues to work over Webb with a dropkick to his back for a near fall. Shelley plants Webb with a reverse DDT for a near fall. Aries hits a slingshot senton from the apron and Shelley hits a slingshot leg drop leading to a near fall on Webb. Aries plants Webb with a neckbreaker for another near fall. Webb hits a DDT/stunner combo on Aries and Shelley. Williams gets the tag and Petey cleans house. Williams clotheslines Aries from behind and signals for the Canadian Destroyer, but Shelley makes the save hitting an elevated Shell Shock. Webb avoids Shell Shock and hits Silent Creek to eliminate Shelley.
Webb decks Aries off the apron but is nearly pinned by Williams with a rollup. Webb almost wins with a rollup on Williams. Petey counters Silent Creek and crotches Aries on the top rope. Williams spikes Webb with the Canadian Destroyer to eliminate Webb. Aries misses a 450 splash and Williams pins Aries with a rollup. (***1/4. A fine multi-man match and the quick eliminations were welcomed. I really didn’t want this to go incredibly long and it felt like it went a suitable length of time. It was clear that Delirious should not have been eliminated first, though. Williams winning must have been an upset.)
Eighth Contest: IWA-MS Heavyweight Champion BJ Whitmer vs. Petey Williams: Whitmer storms the ring and decks Williams with a clothesline for an early two count. Whitmer tries for a few quick covers, but Williams pops up at two. Whitmer takes Williams over with an exploder suplex sending Williams to the floor. Whitmer works over Williams with a forearm and tosses Williams in several chairs in the crowd. Williams kicks out after bringing brought back to the ring. Williams plants Whitmer with a Canadian Destroyer to win the match and the title. (*. It’s not really a match nor was it designed to be a great match. Williams gets a shock win after a lengthy match and the fans popped well for it. Williams as champion should lead to some interesting and entertaining matchups moving forward.) After the match, Whitmer is pissed and attacks Williams hitting a powerbomb.
Ninth Contest: CM Punk & Colt Cabana vs. Puma & Ricky Reyes in a tag title tournament match: They all shake hands to show respect for each other before Cabana and Puma start the match. Cabana shoulder blocks Puma and Punk taunts him from the apron. Puma avoids an arm drag for a rollup. Cabana controls Puma on the mat working over the left arm. Puma counters with a somersault senton. Punk tags in and is arm dragged by Puma. Puma spin kicks Cabana and head scissors Punk to the floor. Reyes baseball slides Puma onto Punk outside the ring after Punk caught Puma on a slingshot attempt. Cabana takes everyone out with a springboard moonsault. Punk works over Reyes hitting a backbreaker. Reyes gets worked over in the corner by Cabana and Punk. Reyes fights back on Cabana with several kicks. Cabana stops Reyes with a side Russian leg sweep. Punk plants Reyes with a vertical suplex and taunts Puma again. Reyes continues to be worked over. Cabana locks in the Billy Goats Curse and Punk tags in to put a camel clutch on Reyes until Puma enters. Punk and Cabana tie their opponents together and put Indian death locks on them. Punk drops Reyes over his knee with a double under hook backbreaker for a near fall.
Reyes almost pins Punk with an inside cradle. Puma takes Cabana out with a springboard crossbody and a spinning heel kick on Punk. Reyes takes Punk over with a snap suplex. Puma dropkicks Punk while seated and tags in Reyes. Reyes hits a snap suplex before Puma enters to get a near fall. Puma plants Punk with a back suplex for a two count. Reyes continues to work over Punk with several kicks in the corner. Punk is taken over with a double snap suplex for a near fall. Punk gets tangled up in the ropes by Reyes and is dropkicked to the floor. Punk continues to be worked over in the corner by Reyes and Puma. Punk takes Reyes down with a suplex. Cabana gets tagged in and cleans house with strikes. Cabana scoop slams Puma and Reyes. Cabana knee strikes both men in the corner. Cabana holds Puma over his knee to allow Punk to hit a slingshot leg drop, but Reyes breaks up the cover and trades strikes with Punk. Reyes takes Punk over with a series of German suplexs for a two count. Cabana gets worked over by Puma and Reyes. Cabana sends them into each other and holds Puma to allow Punk to hit a shining wizard. Cabana hits a fisherman suplex for the win. (**1/2. A decent match that saw all four men work pretty well together. I’m not sure if Reyes and Puma came across as real threats to winning the match, which hurt the match. They did some good double team moves throughout too.)
Tenth Contest: B-Boy & Homicide vs. Tracy Smothers & Chris Hamrick in a tag title tournament match: Hamrick and Homicide start the match trading several chops. They both go down following a double clothesline. Homicide wants Smothers in the ring. Smothers takes Homicide down to the mat but that leads to a standoff. Boy enters the match and gets taken down to the mat by Smothers before another standoff. Homicide returns to the contest to try his luck with Smothers. Smothers arm drags Homicide a few times and plays to the crowd. Homicide and Boy takes Smothers over with a vertical suplex. Homicide misses a diving headbutt and Smothers nearly wins the match with a rollup. Smothers nearly pins Homicide with a Flatliner. Homicide is taken down with a double side Russian leg sweep and Hamrick nearly wins the match. Homicide locks in an STF but Hamrick reaches the ropes quickly. Homicide and Hamrick trade rollups until Hamrick gets control on the mat with arm control. Boy enters to deck Hamrick from behind. Hamrick scoop slams Boy and goes to the top, but is crotched by Homicide. Homicide takes Hamrick off the top with a hurricanrana. Boy hits a leg drop off the top on Hamrick for another two count.
Boy hits a neckbreaker on Hamrick out of a hip toss setup. Homicide keeps Hamrick on the mat with a head scissors. Hamrick stops Boy with a running boot and both men are down. Hamrick goes to the wrong corner and is decked by Homicide. Boy plants Hamrick with a DDT. Homicide nearly wins with a bridging suplex on Hamrick. Hamrick hits a reverse DDT/neckbreaker on Boy and Homicide. Smothers gets the hot tag and cleans house with strikes and dropkicks. Boy nails Smothers with a shining wizard and a slingshot crossbody to the floor. Hamrick hits a suicide dive to the floor. Homicide takes everyone out with a somersault suicide dive. Homicide tries for a cutter, but Hamrick hit a suplex turned into a stunner. Smothers heel kicks Homicide for a two count. Homicide tosses Hamrick with an overhead belly to belly suplex. Smothers shoves Homicide out of the corner to hit a spear for a two count. Hamrick nails Boy with a step up kick. Homicide hooks Hamrick for a Cop Killa, but Hamrick counters with a sit down tombstone piledriver! Smothers stops Boy in the corner and has him on his shoulders to allow Hamrick to hit a top rope blockbuster for the win! (***1/4. That was a lot of fun and way better than I would have ever expected it to be. Hamrick did some crazy spots for his age and these four delivered a fun match. I can’t put over Hamrick and Smothers enough during this era on the independents.)
Eleventh Contest: Chris Hero vs. Samoa Joe: They go with a slow start with neither man getting a clear advantage. Joe keeps Hero on the mat for a moment leading to a standoff. They trade chops with the crowd doing dueling chants. Hero knocks Joe off his feet and gets a front face lock on Joe. Joe counters and gets control of Hero on the mart for a few moments. Hero counters with a head scissors on the mat leading to them having another standoff. The crowd has literally been doing a dueling chants the entire time. Joe and Hero trade strikes and the crowd is eating this up. Hero forearms Joe in the corner followed by a few more blows. Joe fights back with chops and a flurry of strikes. Hero takes Joe down with several strikes and backs off staring at Joe. Joe forearms Hero several times to gain control in the corner. Hero nails Joe with an elbow strike. Joe fights back with a few kicks and strikes. Joe tries for an STO, but Hero rolls through and dropkicks Joe into the corner. Joe plants Hero with an STO. Joe comes off the ropes to deliver a knee drop.
Hero fights back but gets tripped by Joe. Joe knee strikes Hero, but Hero nails Joe with a kick to the head. Hero comes off the ropes to hit a swinging neckbreaker and a senton splash. Hero gets a two count following a clothesline. Joe hits a snap powerslam for a near fall and locks in a cross arm bar until Hero reaches the ropes. Hero forearms Joe after a boot strike. Joe spikes Hero with a Death Valley Driver for a near fall. Joe tries for a full nelson, but Hero hits a neck vice suplex and a double stomp. Hero locks in the Hangman’s Clutch. Joe is able to reach the bottom rope to break the hold. Hero tries for Hero’s Welcome, but Joe gets a sleeper on for a moment. Hero plants Joe with the Hero’s Welcome! Joe counters a second attempt with a back suplex. Joe locks in a choke and Hero passes out. (***1/2. Okay, that was by far one of the best Hero matches I’ve seen in IWA-MS. They worked a style very well and the crowd atmosphere added to this match a great deal. This had a big match feel and it delivered big time.)
Chris Hero cuts a promo saying that he doesn’t want people to cheer for him. Hero says that wrestling is his life and it makes him want to cry. Hero promises that if he doesn’t make Samoa Joe submit tomorrow night then he’s done for good in IWA-MS. Hero is confident that he will not lose tomorrow night. Hero is tired of fans cheering for him.
Twelfth Contest: Jerry Lynn vs. Sabu in a no disqualification match: Early on, they have a standoff after countering each other on the mat a few times. They actually do a standoff twice. Sabu hits a middle rope heel kick for a two count. Lynn plants Sabu with a reverse DDT for a near fall. Lynn trips Sabu from the floor and hits a leg drop over the middle rope causing both men to crash to the floor. Sabu smashes Lynn with a chair shot to the face. Sabu goes to the ring and takes Lynn out with a triple jump dive to the outside. They trade strikes in the crowd with Lynn knocking Sabu off the bleachers to hit a crossbody. Sabu splashes Lynn in the corner after leaping off of a chair. Lynn kicks a chair into Sabu as he ran towards the corner. Lynn puts a half Boston Crab on Sabu trying for a submission. Lynn kicks Sabu in the corner and tries for a tornado DDT, but Sabu counters with a suplex for a near fall. Lynn trips Sabu to send him face first onto a chair for a near fall. Sabu clotheslines Lynn after Jerry leaps off a chair.
Sabu delivers a chair assisted leg drop for a two count. Sabu locks in a camel clutch but Lynn reaches the ropes quickly. Lynn plants Sabu with a DDT onto the chair. Lynn backdrops Sabu onto a chair. Lynn drives Sabu down back first onto a chair. Sabu comes off the ropes to bulldog Lynn and moonsaults a chair onto Lynn’s back. Sabu locks in a camel clutch and Lynn submits. (**1/4. To me this felt like it didn’t get past the first gear. Considering the previous match, there was no way they were going to reach that same level of excitement. It was a fine match if the whole point was to just showcase Sabu.)
Main Event: CM Punk & Colt Cabana vs. Chris Hamrick & Tracy Smothers for the vacant IWA-MS Tag Team Championships: Hamrick and Punk start the match with both men hitting arm drags. Hamrick kicks Punk to avoid a leg sweep and nearly wins with a rollup after avoiding an arm drag. Smothers gets tagged in and the fans get behind him. Punk kicks Smothers sway after a takedown and they have a standoff. Punk fakes a test of strength and causes Smothers to dance a little. Neither man goes down on shoulder block attempts. Smothers takes Punk down with a crossbody for a two count. Smothers forearms Punk for a two count. Cabana enters and Smothers takes him down with a fireman’s carry. Cabana palm strikes Smothers several times but an eye rake stops him. Smothers chops Cabana several times in the corner. Smothers heel kicks Cabana and does the same to Punk before clotheslining both men to the floor. Smothers fakes a dive but kicks both Punk and Cabana to the floor. Punk delivers a swinging neckbreaker to Smothers over the middle rope. Cabana sends Smothers into the ring post and tosses Smothers into a few chairs.
Punk taunts Smothers in the ring before delivering stomps. Smothers is double teamed in the corner with several strikes and fights back on Cabana. Punk scoop slams Smothers followed by a knee drop. Smothers is sent face first into the middle turnbuckle by Cabana. Cabana takes Smothers down with a side Russian leg sweep. Punk comes off the apron to deliver a senton splash for a two count. Smothers fights out of the corner with right hands. Punk keeps a sleeper on Smothers while using the ropes for leverage. Smothers fights back with strikes on Punk. Punk mule kicks Smothers followed by another kick for a two count. Punk goes to the top rope but Smothers tosses him off and crotches Punk over the top rope. Hamrick gets the hot tag and Hamrick cleans house. Hamrick hits a stunner on Punk out of a suplex. Cabana drops Hamrick over his knee for a two count. Smothers side slams Cabana for a two count. Punk nails Smothers with a shining wizard for a two count. Hamrick gets worked over in the corner. Punk knee lifts Smothers as does Cabana. Hamrick superkicks Punk and Smothers pins Cabana with a rollup for the win. (**. Compared to the other matches in the tournament, this was a disappointing match. I’d have to think that part of that has to do with the fact they wrestled several matches previously. Smothers and Hamrick winning the titles is the right choice.) After the match, Punk and Cabana decide against shaking hands and attack the new tag champions.
IWA-MS A Shot Of Southern Comfort gets an easy recommendation from me. A lot of quality action and the crowd was responsive and enhanced the viewing experience. Check this show out.
Thanks for reading.
31-year old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Longtime fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Vikings. Avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on the old school wrestling.