Written by: Bob Colling
IWA-MS presents Something To Prove
From: Philadelphia, PA
Opening Contest: IWA-MS Light Heavyweight Champion Delirious vs. Josh Abercrombie: Delirious loses his mind on the floor after the bell sounds. Delirious complains of a mask pull despite having not actually locked up. Delirious continues to complain of cheating that hasn’t happened as Abercrombie had arm control. Delirious keeps Abercrombie on the mat with a full nelson but that doesn’t last overly long. Abercrombie takes Delirious down to the mat and can’t keep Delirious down on the mat long enough. Delirious shoulder blocks Abercrombie into the ropes and taunts the challenger. Delirious kicks Abercrombie in the midsection and taunts him. Abercrombie nearly wins with a rollup and Delirious almost wins with a rollup of his own. Abercrombie clotheslines the champ followed by a dropkick. Delirious goes under the ring to avoid a moonsault attempt. Delirious takes Abercrombie out with a somersault dive to the floor. Delirious takes Abercrombie down with a back suplex for a near fall. Delirious continues to work over Abercrombie with headbutts and knee lifts. Abercrombie drops Delirious face first into the middle rope. Abercrombie has a rollup, but Delirious kicks out and Abercrombie hits a middle rope moonsault for a two count. Delirious catches Abercrombie in the corner with a spinebuster and locks in a modified STF.
Delirious licks his hand to rub his spit in the challengers face. Delirious goes for the Styles Clash, but Abercrombie counters. Delirious tries for the move again, actually three times. Abercrombie avoids it with a springboard kick. Delirious and Abercrombie trade forearm strikes. Abercrombie nearly wins with a standing hurricanrana followed by a swinging neckbreaker for a near fall. Abercrombie kicks Delirious in the corner, but is met with an elbow strike. Abercrombie avoids Delirious in the corner. Abercrombie blocks a suplex on the apron and they both end up on the apron. Abercrombie kicks Delirious and hits a backstabber on the apron from the middle rope! They are both laid out on the floor as the referee begins to count them out. Delirious kicks Abercrombie and sends Josh into the corner. Delirious hits a leaping clothesline followed by a cobra clutch backbreaker. Delirious goes to the top rope and lands over Abercrombie’s knee. Abercrombie drops Delirious with a forearm strike and hits the Phoenix Splash to win the match and title! (***. An enjoyable opener to their first show in a new market. I’m very happy to see they went with a clean finish and there wasn’t any BS attached to it. I’ve been digging Abercrombie the more I see of him so having him as the champion seems to be a good direction to go in.)
Second Contest: CM Punk vs. Homicide: Homicide takes Punk down to the mat, but doesn’t get any momentum leading to a standoff. Punk comes off the ropes with a shoulder block leading to another standoff. Homicide shoulder blocks Punk to the floor leading to Punk stalling outside the ring. Punk works over Homicide with strikes in the corner after returning to the ring. Homicide backdrops Punk coming out of the corner. Punk nails Homicide with a leaping forearm strike in the corner. Homicide takes Punk down to the mat and tries for an STF, but Punk manages to avoid it. Punk sends Homicide into the turnbuckle face first. Punk knee drops Homicide and puts a nerve hold on in the middle of the ring. Punk tosses Homicide with an overhead belly to belly suplex. Homicide drives Punk down with a neckbreaker. Homicide misses a top rope diving headbutt. Homicide eye rakes Punk after trading chops for a moment. Homicide forearm strikes Punk in the corner followed by a running boot for a two count. Homicide hits an exploder suplex. Punk avoids a tornado DDT in the corner by tossing Homicide. Punk nails Homicide with a shining wizard for a two count. Homicide stops Punk with a bridging suplex for a near fall. Homicide plants Punk with a quick DDT. They trade inside cradles with neither man getting a three count. Homicide gets a backslide for a two count. Punk gets a two count with a rollup. Homicide plants Punk with an ace cutter. Homicide hits a piledriver, but Punk reaches the ropes to break the pin. Punk hits a double under hook backbreaker for a near fall. Punk puts Homicide on the top turnbuckle, but Homicide holds on and bites Punk’s forehead. Punk falls to the mat and Homicide hits the diving headbutt for a two count. Homicide misses a lariat and Punk nearly wins with an inside cradle. Homicide rolls over on the cradle and manages to pin Punk. (*1/2. I don’t think these guys meshed very well. The action wasn’t very entertaining and they didn’t do much of anything of excitement. It felt really standard and almost something you’d see on a WWE live event. So, in that regard, it’s good to Punk already have that style perfected.)
Third Contest: IWA MS Women’s Champion MsChif vs. Mickie Knuckles vs. Allison Danger in an elimination match: They start off kind of awkwardly delivering strikes to each other. Each women attempts to get control of the match but they are stopped by one of their opponents. MsChif missed a slap to Knuckles and has to do it again. Danger gets slapped by both women after taunting both of them. Danger gets tossed with an exploder suplex. Knuckles side slams Danger as MsChif hit a bulldog and the referee doesn’t count their pin attempt for some reason. MsChif is limping and appears to have hurt her left knee, which does have a brace. Knuckles knee lifts MsChif after Danger gets knocked off the apron. Knuckles kicks MsChif several times and Danger gets knocked off the apron again. MsChif clotheslines Danger for a two count. Knuckles splashes Danger on the corner and MsChif nearly pins Knuckles with a rollup. Danger connects with a running knee strike to stop MsChif. Danger double stomps Knuckles on the mat. Danger pulls Knuckles hair on the mat. MsChif elbows Danger in the corner to avoid an elbow strike. MsChif head scissors Knuckles but Danger gets a clothesline on MsChif. Danger controls MsChif on the mat with a surfboard.
Danger hits a side Russian leg sweep and controls MsChif on the mat with a modified abdominal stretch. MsChif drops Danger over the middle rope and continues with forearm strikes on the floor. Knuckles takes both women out with a suicide dive and seemingly hits her face on the floor. The fans were shocked by that one. Knuckles and Danger trade strikes on the floor until MsChif dives off the top to hit a crossbody. Danger drives MsChif down with a neckbreaker on the floor. Danger chokes MsChif on the railing and delivers a running kick. Knuckles forearms Danger and dropkicks Danger against the railing. Knuckles rolls MsChif into the ring and delivers a few more strikes. Knuckles headbutts MsChif followed by a snap suplex. Knuckles nearly pins MsChif with a bridging German suplex. Danger plants Knuckles with a DDT for a two count. Danger plants MsChif with an STO for a near fall. Knuckles nearly pins Danger with an inside cradle. Danger gets mist in her eyes from MsChif. MsChif hits a body scissors hurricanrana and locks in a bridging neck vice. Knuckles reaches the ropes. Danger is being carried to the backstage area and will not continue in the match. MsChif goes for another mist, but hits the referee and drop toe holds Knuckles into the ropes. MsChif double stomps Knuckles in the corner a few times. MsChif puts her spiked dress on Knuckles face and hits a running knee strike. Knuckles has been busted wide open. A new referee comes out and Knuckles kicks out at two. Knuckles gets a second wind and nails MsChif with a shining kick to win the match and title. After the match, the locker room empties to celebrate with Knuckles. (**. The start was a little clunky and awkward, but once they got past the triple threat counters and other nonsense, it became a decent brawl between the three women. I’m thinking we’ll see a Knuckles/Danger match at some point considering Danger wasn’t actually eliminated.)
Fourth Contest: Tracy Smothers vs. Claudio Castagnoli: Smothers takes Castagnoli down to the mat for the early advantage, but that doesn’t last long. They counter each other on wrist locks. Castagnoli arm drags Smothers and taunts Tracy by strutting. Smothers arm drags Castagnoli to send Claudio bailing to the floor and he complains a bit. Smothers comes off the ropes with a crossbody for a two count followed by a dropkick. Smothers clotheslines Castagnoli to the floor and fakes a dive. Smothers baseball slides Castagnoli into the guard railing and drives Castagnoli back first into the apron. Smothers rams Castagnoli into the ring steps and back first into the railing. Jade Chung pulls down the ropes and Smothers crashes to the floor. Castagnoli sends Smothers into the ring post shoulder first. Castagnoli sends Smothers into the railing back first to keep the advantage. Smothers gets a backslide, but the referee is distracted by Chung and doesn’t count the cover. Castagnoli clotheslines Smothers. Castagnoli locks in an abdominal stretch and uses the ropes for leverage. Smothers gets an inside cradle for a two count. Castagnoli decks Smothers with an uppercut and an elbow drop.
Castagnoli continues to cheat by using the ropes in a sleeper hold. The referee finally sees Castagnoli cheating and Smothers gets a rollup, but the referee is again distracted. Smothers is dropped throat first over the middle rope. Castagnoli keeps Smothers on the mat with a sleeper hold. Castagnoli delivers a few uppercuts in the corner. Smothers eye rakes Castagnoli and delivers several strikes of his own in the corner. Smothers hits a leaping forearm smash and a DDT for a two count. Castagnoli comes off the ropes to deliver a leaping uppercut. Castagnoli leaps off the top to deliver another uppercut for a two count. Smothers decks Castagnoli with two clotheslines and a Flatliner for a two count. Castagnoli drops Smothers with a neckbreaker. Castagnoli leaps off the top but misses an elbow drop and Smothers nearly wins with a rollup. Jade Chung distracts Smothers again and Castagnoli decks Smothers with a chain to win the match. (*1/2. I was kind of disappointed with what they went with here. It was very slow for the most part and the action wasn’t really holding my attention. There were a few sprints of decent action as Claudio looked good and Smothers took a few good bumps. However, this was a match that didn’t need to go 18-minutes and would have been better suited going half that amount time.)
Fifth Contest: Six-Way Elimination Tables Match
IWA-MS Tag Team Champions Ryan Boz & Trik Davis vs. Sal & Vito Thomaselli vs. B-Boy & Brandon Thomaselli vs. Davey Andrews & Shane Hagadorn vs. Chad Austin & Eric Priest vs. BJ Whitmer & Eddie Kingston
Andrews and Hagadorn are a surprise sixth team as it was supposed to be only five. Hagadorn and Andrews get the early advantage working on Priest after Austin was sent to the floor. Andrews hits a middle rope knee strike on Priest. Austin returns and beats on both men, but Andrews cuts Austin off with strikes. Priest clubs Andrews and Austin hits a snap suplex. Hagadorn grabs a table from under the ring. Priest tries for a split legged moonsault and proceeds to land on his head, which is part of his gimmick. Every two minutes a new team comes out…
BJ Whitmer and Eddie Kingston make their way out. They are in no rush to enter the ring. They go after Austin and Priest. Whitmer sends Priest over the top to the floor. Kingston nails Hagadorn with a yakuza kick. Priest spears Whitmer followed by right hands. Kingston is sent into the railing. Hagadorn sets a table up in the ring. Austin is placed on the table, but Kingston powerbombs Hagadorn through the table onto Austin. Both tag teams have been eliminated. Whitmer and Kingston are the only team left in the match so Jim Fannin cuts a promo.
Trik Davis and Ryan Boz finally come out and Whitmer goes after Davis while Boz beats on Kingston. Davis head scissors Whitmer while Boz sends Kingston into the post. Davis boots Whitmer in the corner and hits a head scissors. Davis avoids Whitmer in the corner and comes off the top to hit a crossbody, but Whitmer rolls through to hit a brainbuster. Boz continues to beat on Kingston on the floor. Boz boots Whitmer followed by a back suplex.
Sal and Vito Thomaselli make their way out to join the match. Vito sends Davis into the railing. Vito plants Travis with a brainbuster. Vito drives Davis down onto Sal’s knee. Vito knee strikes Davis to the mat. Vito hits a middle rope leg drop on Davis as Sal hit a side slam.
B-Boy and Brandon Thomaselli are the final team to come out and they go after Sal and Vito with right hands. Boy delivers several chops and focuses his attack on Whitmer in the corner. Vito sends Kingston to the floor and hits a crossbody. Whitmer decks Sal with a clothesline and Boy dropkicks Whitmer. Boy hits a reverse DDT on Sal onto the apron. Whitmer hits a suicide dive to the floor. Brandon hits a springboard moonsault to the floor. Boz powerbombs Davis over the top onto everyone. Vito works over Brandon with strikes as everyone continues to brawl. Davis head scissors Kingston off the apron to the floor. Whitmer tries to suplex Boz through a table. Boz plants Whitmer with a sit down piledriver. Boz and Davis try to hit a double team move, but Fannin gets involved and is tossed into the ring. Boz tries to pickup Fannin, but they are attacked by Whitmer and Kingston. Whitmer puts Boz through a table in the corner with an exploder suplex. That means we will have new tag team champions.
Boy works over Whitmer and Kingston with running face lifts in the corner. Brandon goes to the top, but Chung grabs his foot. Boy grabs Chung and gives Brandon Chung. Brandon powerbombs Chung onto Whitmer through the table to eliminate Whitmer and Kingston.
Sal and Vito go right after Brandon and Boy in the corner. Vito works over Brandon in the corner, but Boy and Brandon fight back with strikes. Boy superkicks Sal and Vito dropkicsk Boy. Brandon nails Sal with a shooting star press kick. Sal gets a chokehold on Boy in the middle of the ring. Boy counters with a brainbuster. Vito plants Boy with a piledriver. Brandon hits the Air Raid Crash on Vito. Sal slams Brandon down to the mat and is the only man standing. Sal goes under the ring to grab a table. Sal and Vito set a table on the floor. Brandon blocks a suplex to the floor and Boy helps out. Stereo suplexs into the ring from the apron. Boy hits a double suplex to gain control of the match. Boy and Brandon hit a powerbomb/neckbreaker combo. Vito is sat on the top turnbuckle but Sal makes the save for his brother. Vito clotheslines Boy over the top to the floor. Vito leaps off the top to double stomp Brandon through a table on the floor and they win the tag team titles. (**1/2. Did this really need to go nearly 30-minutes? Kingston took a nice bump off the apron on the head scissors, but this was mostly just basic brawling to fill time. The final elimination was something I wasn’t expecting. Sal and Vito winning is probably the right decision, and they did so in a clean manner, well, for a tables match, at least.)
Sixth Contest: Axl Rotten, Ian Rotten & Nate Webb vs. JC Bailey, Mad Man Pondo & Toby Klein in a Philadelphia street fight: All six men start brawling as soon as the bell sounds. Webb misses a somersault splash in the corner and Pondo delivers a chair shot. Axl whacks Bailey over the head with a chair and does the same to Klein. Ian staples some money to Bailey’s face. Pondo dropkicks a chair into Webb. Klein is busted wide open already. Bailey staples money to Ian’s face. Klein has blood all over his chest from his forehead. Bailey staples Webb’s hand. Klein works over Ian with overhand strike in the corner. Klein digs scissors into Axl’s forehead. Webb nails Bailey with a chair shot. Pondo hits Ian with a hammer in the corner. Ian spikes Pondo with a DDT. Webb DDT’s Bailey off the middle rope onto chair. Ian digs the scissors into Klein’s forehead. Pondo is busted open as Axl sent him into the crowd. Axl gets sent into the post face first. Ian powerbombs Bailey onto two chairs on the floor. Pondo whacks Webb with a stop sign while Ian smashes Bailey with a chair shot. Webb refuses to stay down in the ring. Webb DDTs Klein onto a chair while Axl sends Bailey into the guard railing. Webb hits a chair assisted moonsault onto Pondo and Klein for a two count. Pondo gets killed with stereo chair shots and Axl pins Pondo to win the match. (NR. I mean, this was just gross. Klein was bleeding bucket within a minute and it was just six guys destroying each other in a manner that was not appealing and it was truly disgusting.) After the match, Pondo is pouring blood out of his head and they naturally zoom in on that.
Seventh Contest: IWA-MS Heavyweight Champion Jimmy Jacobs vs. Arik Cannon vs. Chris Hero vs. Danny Daniels in a gauntlet match: Cannon and Daniels start the gauntlet match. Daniels shoulder blocks Cannon, but Cannon gets control with a headlock. Daniels slaps Cannon a few times but misses a big boot. Cannon keeps Daniels on the mat with a headlock. Daniels staggers Cannon with a few knee strikes. Cannon arm drags Daniels and delivers an elbow strike. Daniels gets stopped on the middle rope and Cannon headbutts Daniels. Daniels delivers a middle rope atomic drop and Cannon bails to the floor. Cannon and Daniels exchange strikes on the floor. Daniels leaps off the top to connect with a knee strike for a two count. Daniels connects with a backpack stunner for a two count. Cannon tosses Daniels into the corner with an overhead suplex. Daniels hits a jawbreaker but Cannon comes back with a dropkick. Cannon forearms Daniels and hits a brainbuster for a two count. Daniels stops Cannon with a backbreaker. Cannon forearms Daniels followed by a few strikes. Cannon drops Daniels with a leaping kick to the head. Daniels clubs Cannon with a clothesline for a near fall. Cannon drives Daniels down with an elevated neckbreaker for a two count. Cannon slaps the mat to get the crowd behind him.
Cannon misses a shining wizard and Daniels nearly hit a piledriver. Cannon avoids the move and hits the shining wizard for a two count. Daniels tries to suplex Cannon to the floor, but Cannon avoids it. Daniels stops Cannon with a neckbreaker over the top rope followed by a top rope double stomp. Daniels spikes Cannon with a tombstone piledriver to eliminate Cannon.
Chris Hero is next to come out for the gauntlet match. Daniels decks Hero with a clothesline and right hands in the corner. Hero forearms Daniels to the floor. Hero fakes a dive to the floor and rams Daniels face first onto the apron. Daniels misses a chop and hits the ring post. Hero rams Daniels chest first into the guard railing. Hero chops Daniels against the railing. Hero comes off the top but misses a missile dropkick. Daniels hits a double stomp/senton combo. Daniels forearms Hero off the apron. Daniels takes Hero out with a somersault dive to the floor. Daniels keeps Hero on the mat but doesn’t get a submission. Hero rolls out and nearly wins with a rollup. Daniels forearms Hero in the corner and dropkicks Hero into the corner for a two count. Hero staggers Daniels with a forearm strike. Daniels eye rakes Hero but runs into a big boot. Hero fights back with chops and a backdrop. Hero dropkicks Daniels and is fired up. Hero tosses Daniels with a suplex, but Daniels grabs the ropes to break the count. Daniels headbutts Hero on the top turnbuckle and manages to hit a butterfly suplex for a near fall. Daniels takes Hero over with a German suplex for a near fall. Daniels goes for a piledriver, but Hero counters with a double leg slam. Hero locks in the Hangman’s Clutch. Daniels is in the middle of the ring. Daniels manages to reach the ropes to break the hold. Hero chops Daniels in the corner and sits Daniels on the top turnbuckle. Daniels boots a charging Hero and manages to counter a double leg slam with a piledriver for a two count. Daniels works over Hero with strikes in the corner. Hero boots a charging Daniels. Hero plants Daniels with the Hero’s Welcome and locks in the Hangman’s Clutch. Daniels is forced to submit and is eliminated.
Jimmy Jacobs runs down into the ring and goes right after Hero with stomps and strikes. Jacobs chokes Hero in the corner. Jacobs beats on Hero with right hands and taunts the crowd. Jacobs delivers a few double stomps in the corner and plays to the crowd. Jacobs fist drops Hero and continues to keep the match at a slower pace. Jacobs forearms Hero into the ropes but runs into a snap powerslam. Hero beats on Jacobs with chops in the corner. Jacobs backdrops Hero over the top to the floor. Jacobs takes Hero out with a suicide dive. Jacobs double stomps Hero several times on the outside. Jacobs sends Hero shoulder first into the ring post. Jacobs chokes Hero on the floor and taunts the referee. Jacobs keeps Hero on the mat with a few knee drops. Jacobs delivers a jawbreaker and a dropkick to a kneeling Hero. Jacobs nails Hero with a running boot strike on the apron. Jacobs stops Hero on the apron with a few strikes and drops Hero over the top rope. Hero tosses Jacobs away but remains on the apron. Hero misses a clothesline and Jacobs hits a neckbreaker for a two count. Jacobs tries for a modified pedigree, but Hero counters with a facebuster. Hero fires back with a few chops and backdrops Jacobs.
Hero decks Jacobs with a clothesline and a slap to the face. Hero splashes Jacobs and hits a release suplex followed by a back senton for a two count. Jacobs is bleeding as Hero continues to beat on Jacobs. Jacobs comes out of the corner with a spear to nearly pin Hero. Jacobs plants Hero with a modified pedigree for a near fall. Jacobs heads to the top and hits a back senton, but Hero kicks out at one! Jacobs jabs Hero a few times, but Hero isn’t hurt by them. Hero puts Jacobs on the turnbuckle and hits a slam for a near fall. Hero slams Jacobs to the mat before going to the top rope. Hero connects with a double stomp for a near fall. Arik Cannon has returned to ringside and plants Hero with a side suplex as the referee was out of position. Jacobs climbs to the top and hits another senton splash for only a two count. Jacobs tries for the Contra Code, but Hero counters with the Hero’s Welcome, but Cannon pulls the referee out at two. Jacobs gets powder while Hero is distracted and throws powder into Hero’s face. Jacobs hits the Contra Code to win the match. (**. I was just waiting for the kind of finish to protect Hero from taking a clean loss and yet again we get one. It felt like they didn’t get the crowd invested into the action and it was a disappointing segment. The final match of the gauntlet was the best, but it couldn’t save the segment from being mostly average and too long.)
Main Event: Samoa Joe vs. Necro Butcher: Joe shoves the referee to the floor and trades stiff shots with Butcher in the middle of the ring. Joe nails Butcher with a kick to the head and Butcher bails to the floor. Joe takes Butcher out with a suicide dive! Joe kicks Butcher as Necro was sitting down. Butcher comes back with a few strikes and Joe delivers a few headbutts. Butcher is busted wide open and whacks Joe with a chair shot. Butcher backdrops Joe on the floor and sends Joe chest first into the railing. Joe slams Butcher on the floor and Butcher landed right on his forehead. Joe smashes Butcher with a chair. Joe nails Butcher with a running boot against the railing. Joe continues to beat on Butcher with strikes a knee strike in the crowd. Joe tosses Butcher back at ringside. Joe gets a two count upon returning to the ring. Joe delivers several kicks to Butcher’s head. Butcher comes off the ropes to big boot Joe to the floor. Butcher sends Joe into the guard railing. Butcher grabs a guard railing and hits Joe in the ring with it. Butcher senton splashes Joe on the mat with the railing over his body. Butcher punches Joe on the apron, but Joe grabs Butcher to hit a Flatline off the apron to the floor. Butcher landed right on his forehead again. Butcher is dripping blood from his head. Joe whacks Butcher over the head with a chair. Joe lays the railing over the middle rope. Joe powerbombs Butcher onto the railing, but it was really just Butcher’s neck hitting the railing and gets a two count. Butcher blocks a German suplex, but Joe hits a second attempt to have Butcher land on the chair for a two count. Joe continues to work over Butcher with chops, but Butcher fights back with strikes. Joe slaps the crap out of Butcher followed by knee strikes. Butcher gets a kick to the head because Joe doesn’t care. Butcher struggles and can’t get to his feet and thus loses by knockout. After the match, Butcher gets to his feet and decks Joe with a few strikes. Joe heads backstage to avoid anything more with Butcher. Ian Rotten, yet again, comes out to cut a promo and steal the heat. It’s beyond comical at this point. (****. In no way was this a wrestling match. It came across like a complete fight and the crowd atmosphere was terrific here. This has a big match feel and it delivered. Butcher bleeding buckets added to the match and the story of Butcher actually being the underdog was presented well. If you enjoy hard hitting and borderline cringe worthy action, you’d really enjoy this one.)
The opening match was solid and the main event delivered a great hard hitting match. Everything in the middle of that was average at best or quite disappointing. Realistically, this show is a one match card as you probably should see Joe/Butcher at least once in your life. However, as a complete show, it’s not something I can recommend.
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.