Written by: Bob Colling
United Wrestling Federation presents Rock N’ Roll Express Tag Team Tournament Night One
From: Charleston, SC
This is an outdoor event and is the first night of a three night tag team tournament. As you can see, the tournament is dedicated to the Rock N’ Roll Express, though Ricky Morton wouldn’t be on the show while Robert Gibson is.
Opening Contest: Steve Corino & CW Anderson vs. Damien Wayne & Mike Booth: Corino and Booth started the match with both men giving clean breaks in the corner. Booth controls the arm of Corino to start the action, keeping a basic approach with his offense. Corino wants Wayne to enter the ring and gets his wish. Anderson enters the ring and chops Wayne but Wayne comes back with several strikes of his own. Anderson shoulder blocks Wayne and gets a two count. Anderson sends Wayne into Corino, knocking Corino off the apron and kicks the back of Wayne. Corino comes back into the ring and controls Wayne with strikes and eye rakes. Corino and Anderson deliver two running kicks in the corner to keep Wayne down in the corner. Corino and Anderson have a double submission on Wayne but aren’t able to keep the hold on legally.
Corino and Anderson try to prevent a sunset flip from Wayne on Corino but the referee kicks their hands and Wayne gets a two count but Corino regains control with a kick. Anderson is tagged in but is met with a dropkick soon from Wayne. Booth enters the match and hits CW with a forearm smash. Anderson decks Booth with a left hand. Corino nails Booth with a high knee lift. Booth runs into a big boot and Corino hits an STO for a two count. Booth battles back with a side Russian leg sweep but only gets a near fall. Wayne enters the match and drops Corino with a right hand and scoop slam for a two count. Wayne heads to the top rope and hits a top rope first drop for a two count. Anderson decks Wayne with a clothesline and a super kick but Wayne kicks out at two. Wayne and Booth hit a STO/dropkick combo on Anderson for a near fall.
All four men are battling in the ring at this point with Anderson and Corino being sent into each other. Wayne and Booth hit a neck breaker/elbow combo on Anderson but Corino makes the save. Booth is sent over the top to the floor. Anderson plants Wayne with the spine buster and that’s good enough for the win. (**1/2. They got plenty of time and I thought they worked an enjoyable match. Anderson and Corino did a great job in making the local guys appear as threats which made for a better viewing experience, as well.)
Second Contest: Christian York & Joey Matthews vs. The Naturals: Matthews and Stevens kick off the match with Matthews taunting the fans after shoulder blocking Stevens. Matthews hip tosses Stevens and poses for the crowd as York pretends to be taking pictures of Matthews. Stevens shoulder blocks Matthews and hip tosses Joey and a charging York. Joey and Christian recover on the outside while the fans heckle them. Naturals double team Matthews hitting a bulldog across the knee and Douglas gets a near fall. Douglas hits a clothesline on both York and Matthews before hammering away on York. York is driven down with a double clothesline and the Naturals keep control of York. Matthews stops Douglas by dropping him over the top rope and York pummels Douglas with stomps. Matthews enters the match and works the midsection of Douglas before tagging in York.
York hits a cannonball splash in the corner to damage Douglas and hits a sit out front suplex for a two count. York knee lifts Douglas and gets a two count. Matthews comes back in and works over Douglas with York. Matthews splashes Douglas and York hits a senton splash off the middle rope for a two count. Douglas barely hits a high knee on Matthews and Stevens gets the tag to hammer away on Joey and York. Stevens hits a leaping forearm smash on Matthews and a flipping neck breaker on York for a two count. Douglas hits a top rope cross body on the opponents. Matthews forearms Stevens and has him on his shoulders. Amy Dumas comes out and screws over Matthews to allow a rollup on York and the Naturals win the match. (*1/2. I was rather disappointed by this match. Had we gotten Matthews and York from seven years earlier, I’m sure it would have been great, but they relied on a screwy finish and too much of a basic approach to be entertaining.)
Third Contest: Latin American Exchange vs. The Diamonds In The Rough: Homicide and Skipper start the match with Skipper taking Homicide down but isn’t able to deliver a kick as Homicide rolls to the floor. Skipper takes Homicide over with an overhead suplex but Homicide comes back with a scoop slam. Skipper avoids an elbow drop and arm drags Homicide a few times followed by a standing spin kick. Hernandez tries his luck but is kicked by Skipper and David Young enters to hit a leaping neck breaker for a two count. Young attempts a few shoulder blocks but staggers Hernandez with dropkicks and they both go over the top to the floor with a clothesline. Young hip tosses Homicide and Skipper hits a double under hook suplex for a two count. Skipper maintains control with forearm strikes on Homicide until Hernandez delivers a cheap shot from the apron and Homicide clotheslines Skipper.
Hernandez splashes Skipper in the corner and gets a two count. Hernandez uses the Mexican flag to toss Skipper across the ring. Homicide hits a middle rope elbow drop but Skipper kicks out at two. Hernandez hits a slingshot shoulder block from the apron to knock Skipper down. Hernandez has Skipper over his shoulder for a back breaker submission but lets go. Homicide enters and kicks Skipper in the midsection and controls Skipper with a chin lock. Homicide drops Skipper with a forearm shot. Hernandez misses a splash in the corner and Skipper kicks Hernandez on the top rope. Hernandez shoves Skipper off the middle rope but misses a splash. Young and Homicide enter the match trading strikes and the DITR clean house on LAX. Young is left alone in the ring as Hernandez has Young on his shoulders to allow Homicide to leap off the top to hit an ace crusher for the win. (**. A decent match between these two teams, though it never came across that Young and Skipper ever had a chance. The finisher was good, too.)
Fourth Contest: Petey Williams vs. AJ Styles: Williams takes Styles down to the canvas with a hammerlock, but that offense doesn’t last long. Petey dropkicks Styles to the floor and plays to the crowd. Williams and Styles work over each others arms until Williams hits a back breaker and nearly wins with a rollup. AJ bails to the floor and complains of a hair pull. Petey chases Styles around ringside and Styles gets control in the ring with a few stomps. Petey hip tosses Styles over the top to the floor and Williams hits a slingshot hurricanrana on the floor! Williams gets a two count following a snap suplex. Williams dropkicks the back of Styles and Styles wants a timeout. Styles takes advantage and hammers away on Williams sending Petey to the floor. AJ goes to tease a dive to the floor but fakes out the crowd. Styles hooks Williams and hits a vertical suplex for a two count. Styles complains about the count made by the referee.
Styles hits a nice dropkick to keep control of the bout. Williams comes back with a swinging neck breaker to get some momentum but they are both on the canvas. Williams clotheslines and hits a spinning heel kick on Styles. Petey hits a slingshot Codebreaker for a near fall. Petey hits a side Russian leg sweep and plays to the crowd. Williams attempts the Canadian Destroyer but Styles counters. AJ avoids the Sharpshooter and plants Williams with a vertical suplex turned into a neck breaker for a two count. Styles goes for the Styles Clash but Williams drops down to his knees and plants Styles with a DDT for a near fall. Styles hits a springboard reverse DDT but Williams kicks out at two. Petey misses a sunset flip from the middle rope and Styles hits the Styles Clash for the win. (***. It felt like a quick match, but it was a still a fun watch as these two normally work very well together. The outcome was never a doubt considering Styles is a main event guy for TNA and Williams is just in the X-Division.) After the match, Styles attempts another Styles Clash but Williams counters to hit the Canadian Destroyer to make the fans happy.
Fifth Contest: Kirby Mack & TJ Mack vs. The Naturals: Stevens and Douglas work over the Mack’s before the bell sounds to get the early advantage. Stevens nails Kirby with a clothesline and goes to the floor to shove Daffney on the floor. Kirby and TJ take the Naturals out with somersault dives over the top onto the floor. Daffney leaps off the back of Douglas to take Stevens out with a dive on the floor. Kirby tosses Stevens back into the ring and the match is under control now. Kirby hits a leaping clothesline on Stevens in the corner for a two count. TJ tags into the bout and hammers away on Stevens. Mack’s hit a suplex and double elbow drop on Stevens for a two count. TJ clotheslines Stevens and tags in Kirby to try his luck and keep control over Stevens with strikes. Kirby delivers several kicks to Stevens and taunts Douglas.
Stevens low blows Kirby while the referee was distracted by Douglas. Stevens gets the cheap advantage and tosses Kirby to the floor. Douglas slams Kirby face first onto the ring steps and tosses him back in the ring where Stevens gets a two count. Stevens tags in Douglas and they double team Kirby in the corner with stomps. Douglas drops Kirby with a high knee lift. TJ is distracting the referee while Kirby is double teamed by the Naturals. Stevens continues to hammer away on Kirby. Stevens hits a snap suplex but only gets a two count on Kirby. Stevens knocks TJ down on the apron and the Naturals go back to double teaming Kirby while the referee is distracted. Douglas catapults Kirby throat first across the bottom rope and Stevens hits a snap suplex on the outside to hurt Kirby some more.
Kirby nearly pins Douglas with a rollup but Douglas stops Kirby with a clothesline. Stevens plants Kirby with a DDT but can’t get a three count on the cover attempt. Stevens drives Kirby down with a back breaker and heads to the top rope but misses a moonsault. Douglas and TJ get the tags with TJ hammering away on the Naturals to clean the ring. TJ hits a running big boot on Stevens for a two count. Kirby heads to the top rope but gets crotched by Douglas. They do a Tower of Doom spot in the corner. Stevens covers Kirby but can’t get a three count. Kirby sends Stevens to the floor and the Mack’s hit Death From Above! TJ covers Douglas and gets the victory. (***. The Naturals did an excellent job in their heel roles, I’d say. The action was pretty good and again they were given plenty of times to get as much in as they could.)
Sixth Contest: Steve Corino & CW Anderson vs. Too Cool: Corino and Sexay start the match. Sexay grabs a thong that Corino is wearing and gives him a wedgie causing Corino to bail to the floor. Corino gets on the apron and wants Anderson to take his thong off, but Anderson isn’t feeling that. Corino accidentally decks Anderson on the apron and Sexay taunts Corino. Corino avoids a right hand in the corner but Sexay still decks him moments later. Corino gets a few punches in on Sexay in the corner and chokes Sexay. Sexay comes off the middle rope to hit a dropkick. Hotty gets tagged in and they whip Corino to the canvas before hitting a double elbow drop. CW hammers away on Hotty but Scotty fights back with strikes and tags in Sexay. Sexay clotheslines Anderson over the top to the floor and does some dances causing his pants to fall down. Hotty is laughing at Sexay saying he is small. The fans don’t care about this comedy.
Anderson decks Sexay with a left hand and delivers several strikes. Corino comes back into the ring and uses a chain on Sexay while the referee was distracted. Corino chokes Sexay with the chain while the referee is unaware of the illegal tactic. Sexay tries to battle back with right hands and staggers Anderson but is dropped by a right hand. Corino and Anderson hit a double shoulder block and get a two count on Sexay. Sexay hits a double clothesline to knock Anderson and Corino down. Sexay makes the tag to Hotty who enters and cleans house with right hands. Corino and Anderson are rammed into each other. Too Cool hammer away on their opponents but Sexay is met with a low blow. Anderson accidentally super kicks Corino. Hotty hits the bulldog on Anderson and goes for the Worm and hits it. Sexay comes off the top and hits the leg drop for the win. (*1/4. The comedy stuff didn’t connect with the fans who didn’t care for it at all. Corino and Anderson are the better team and probably should have gone over here. The action was lackluster and rather uninspiring.)
Main Event: Jay Lethal & Robert Gibson vs. Steiner Brothers: Scott Steiner and Jay Lethal start the main event. Scott knocks Lethal off his feet with a couple of chops and a hip toss out of the corner. Lethal jabs Scott several times and drops Scott across the top rope. Lethal heads to the top rope and hits a double axe handle to knock Scott down to his knees. Lethal attempts another one but Scott hits an overhead belly to belly suplex. Rick Steiner and Robert Gibson tag into the match to try their luck. Gibson decks Rick with a right hand in the corner but Rick gets Gibson to be backed off in the corner. Lethal tags in and works over Rick with Gibson hitting double back elbows for a two count on Rick. Scott works over Lethal in the corner delivering chops and a belly to belly suplex for a two count. Rick comes back in and decks Lethal with a right hand.
Scott sends Lethal chest first into the guard railing on the floor and ring post. Scott grabs a steel chair and nails Lethal several times with it. Rick gets a two count on Lethal following a clothesline. Rick has his feet on the ropes while having a sleeper hold on Lethal. Scott tags in to keep control over Lethal with basic strikes. Jay avoids Rick in the corner to hit a missile dropkick! Gibson gets the hot tag and hammers away on Rick. Gibson dropkicks Rick and sends Scott down with a kick to the head. Lethal hits a slingshot cross body to take Scott out on the floor. Gibson works over Rick with knee drops. All four men are in the ring brawling. Lethal and Gibson are sent into each other and Gibson rolls to the floor. Scott has Lethal on his shoulders as Rick hits a top rope bulldog for the win. (*. That was just a bad match and came across more like a squash match, which is weird since the tournament is named after tag team that a member was competing in the match.)
A couple of entertaining matches, but for the most part it wasn’t anything spectacular. UWF has some good local talents, most notable TJ and Kirby Mack. Should be interesting to see how they fare continuing on in the tournament.
Thanks for reading.