WHAT I 1/14/2018
Written by: Bob Colling
Wrestling Has A Tomorrow I
From: Providence, RI
The owner of XWA makes his way out to the ring for some reason after ring introductions for the first match were completed. He’s considering this a historic moment. It turns out he’s here to raise the stakes for the match. The winner of the match will get a XWA Fire Championship match. There’s more though as some music begins to play… Teddy Hart appears and the crowd lets out a gasp. Teddy reveals he’s in the match now, too.
Opening Contest: Little Guido vs. Kellan Thomas vs. Anthony Stone vs. Danny Miles vs. Bear Bronson vs. Teddy Hart: All six men are in the match to start. Hart starts off with a punch to Thomas and Hart gets dumped to the floor by everyone in the match. Guido gets an arm bar on Stone, but leads to controlling Stone on the mat until he’s beaten down, too. Bronson sends Guido to the floor. Miles shoves Thomas and Stone and he’s pissed about something. Miles gets punched by the other four guys before getting sent to the floor by Thomas. Thomas heel kicks Bronson and stops Stone with a backbreaker. Miles catches Thomas on a crossbody attempt to the floor. Stone takes them both out with a somersault dive off the apron. Bronson hits a suicide dive to take out Thomas, Stone and Miles. Hart takes everyone out with a moonsault off the top to the floor. Guido is the only person left in the ring and gets tripped by Miles. Miles misses a clothesline and Guido gets a two count with a crossbody. Hart with a moonsault and Stone frog splashes Miles. Hart plants Stone with a double knee backbreaker powerbomb. Bronson hammers away on Hart, but ends up getting beaten up by Hart and Guido with strikes.
Bronson fights them both off and Hart hits a Code Ted out of the corner on Bronson. Thomas tosses Hart with a suplex. Miles uppercuts Thomas to the mat. Miles crotches Stone on the top and puts Stone in the tree of woe followed by a cannonball splash. Miles shoves Bronson and is met with a chop, which was a little weak. They begin to trade chops in the middle of the ring. Miles beats on Bronson with several overhand strikes and Bronson wants more. Miles uppercuts Bronson and Bronson plants Miles with a slam followed by a senton splash. Guido kicks Bronson and knee lifts Bronson before hitting a middle rope leg drop. Stone nearly pins Hart with a sunset flip. Thomas superkicks Hart and Bronson nails Thomas with a clothesline and does the same to Guido and Hart. Thomas knee strikes Bronson and Stone delivers a top rope double knee strike. Thomas drops Stone gut first to the mat after spinning around for a two count. Thomas ducks a clothesline by Miles. Miles hits a gut buster on Thomas and Hart hits a Canadian Destroyer on Miles. Hart comes off the top to hit a Destroyer on Thomas followed by a springboard moonsault to win the match. (***. A fine six man match to start the match. They relied on a few big spots and the crowd didn’t seem to be all that entertained by what they were doing. Teddy’s surprise involvement made it obvious that he was going to prevail here.)
Backstage, Richard Holliday cuts a promo saying that it’s the debut show and he would have thought the company would invest in him. Kellan Thomas walks by and gets attacked by Holliday who proclaims he will not be disrespected.
Second Contest: Ethan Page vs. Simon Grimm: Early on, Grimm keeps arm control on Page. Grimm gets a sunset flip for a two count. Grimm with another rollup for a near fall. Page stops Grimm with a forearm but runs into a kick and knee strikes. Grimm continues with uppercuts and a gut wrench suplex. Page plants Grimm with a DDT after a throat thrust. Page forearms Grimm to the mat and Grimm crawls to the corner. Page shoulder rams Grimm in the corner followed by a right hand. Grimm fights back with a chop, but Page staggers Grimm with a strike. Page sends Grimm hard back first into the corner. Page elbow strikes Grimm followed by a right hand. Grimm headbutts Page in the midsection and they begin to trade strikes. Page forearms Grimm and is taken down to the mat. Grimm puts a cross arm bar on Page but is met with a knee strike to the face leading to a two count. Page controls Grimm with a sleeper on the mat. Grimm gets to his feet and uppercuts Page a few times. Grimm forearms Page and hits an overhead suplex for a two count. Page and Grimm trade strikes in the middle of the ring. Grimm forearms Page against the ropes. Page delivers an elbow strike and Grimm forearms Page. Grimm misses a strike and is kicked by Page on the apron. Page comes back into the ring and plants Grimm with a cutter for a two count.
Page looks for a piledriver, but Grimm holds on to block the move. Grimm backhands Page and delivers a boot to the face. Grimm nearly wins with a bridging German suplex. Grimm locks in an arm bar, but Page reaches the ropes to break the hold. Page drops Grimm with a running boot for a two count. Grimm throat thrusts Page and delivers a boot. Page plants Grimm with a slam to win the match. (**. They kept a decent pace as I was expecting more of a slow pace by Grimm, but was pleasantly surprised with the action. It was a mostly average match but it was competitive and a fine addition to the undercard.)
Backstage, Matt Tremont cuts a promo about WHAT being in Providence. Tremont is wrestling Dan Maff tonight. Tremont promises violence.
Backstage, Trigga Da OG cuts a promo saying we’ll see what he’s about in twenty seconds.
Third Contest: Trigga Da OG vs. Sully Banger: Banger hammers away on Trigga to start the match. Banger arm drags Trigga and a drop toe hold to maintain control of the match. Banger nearly wins with a rollup. Banger tries for a monkey flip, but Trigga delivers a strike on the middle rope. Banger fights back with a strike and a double axe handle. Banger is holding his right ankle and Trigga delivers a spinning heel kick to win the match. (NR. These two local guys didn’t get a lot of time at all. Trigga getting a cheap win seems to be a manner to get Trigga some heat as Banger came out to getting a decent reaction from the crowd.) After the match, Trigga says there’s no competition and gets scared shitless when Dan Maff comes out for his match.
Fourth Contest: Dan Maff vs. Matt Tremont: They lockup and let for a few times before trading arm control. Tremont gets tired of actual wrestling holds and they begin to trade right hands. Maff works over Tremont in the corner with a few chops. Maff splashes Tremont in the corner and struts. Tremont flips off Maff and delivers a clothesline for a two count. Tremont comes off the middle rope but is met with a boot to the face. Tremont sits down in the corner allowing Maff to hit a running cannonball splash. Tremont gets to his feet and throat thrusts Maff. Maff boots Tremont but is met with a splash in the corner. Tremont clotheslines Maff in the corner and Maff comes back with a spear in the corner. Maff hits another cannonball splash and a senton splash for a two count. Tremont slams Maff to the mat for a near fall. Tremont nearly wins following a splash off the top. Tremont delivers another slam for a two count. Tremont comes off the middle rope and is met with a cutter in midair. Maff drops Tremont with a clothesline and sits Tremont on the top rope. Maff hits the Burning Hammer after taking Tremont off the top rope to win the match. (**. The moves were a little repetitive, but Maff came across like a complete badass and the finish got a good pop from the crowd. I’m glad this didn’t overstay its welcome.) After the match, Maff puts over Tremont and the company.
Backstage, Ace Romero cut a promo saying that he wants AR Fox.
AR Fox cutting a promo from his gym is shown. Fox says that he’d wrestle Romero everyday of the week. Fox says that Romero won’t be so lucky to have a tomorrow.
Fifth Contest: Ace Romero vs. AR Fox: Romero slaps Fox to start the match followed by chops in the corner. Romero drives Fox into the corner shoulder first. Romero tosses Fox with an overhead belly to belly suplex. Fox arm drags Romero followed by a dropkick into the corner. Fox clotheslines Romero in the corner and delivers a dropkick after pulling himself up on the apron. Romero runs out of the corner to nail Fox with a uppercut. Fox takes Romero out with a suicide dive a couple of times. Fox kisses his wife to fake out a third dive. Fox stomps on Romero’s hand and delivers a quick cutter. Fox goes for the cover, but Romero kicks out. Fox pokes Romero in the eyes on a fake chop. Romero drives Fox down with a backbreaker to counter a cutter attempt. Fox’s wife gets on the apron to distract Romero allowing a kick by Fox. Romero elbows Fox and comes off the middle rope, but Fox hits a cutter in midair for a two count. Fox takes Romero out with a dive over the top to the floor. Fox DDTs Romero on the apron followed by a somersault dive off the top to the floor to take Romero out.
Fox goes to the top hitting a swanton bomb 3/4 across the ring, but lands on Romero’s knees. Romero forearms Fox and they begin to trade strikes. Romero big boots Fox, but Fox returns a kick. Fox ducks a clothesline and nails Romero with a jump kick. Romero hits a suplex turned into a sit down powerbomb for a near fall. Fox crawls to the floor to regroup. Romero catches Fox on a suicide dive with a swinging side slam! Romero tosses Fox with a German suplex and a discus clothesline for a two count. Romero goes to the apron to kick Fox. They trade strikes on the apron with Fox delivering a kick. Fox lands into ring and superkicks Romero. Fox hits the diamond dust! Fox goes to the top hitting the 450 splash, but Romero kicks out at two! Romero plants Fox with a Canadian Destroyer for a two count. AR’s wife gets in the ring while the referee is distracted and low blows Romero. Fox simply covers Romero and wins the match. (***1/2. It would appear that Fox seriously messed up his right shoulder and that led to a flat finish between these two. I can’t bash the finish due to the injury. The action was really good and this was by far the best match on the show to this point. Romero impressed me a great deal here as he pulled off some fantastic moves considering his size.)
Backstage, JT Dunn is interviewed regarding his match with Tommy Dreamer. Dunn thinks that Dreamer can’t touch him and he’s going to end hardcore wrestling. He’s going to end HOH and end Tommy Dreamer.
A video of JT Dunn talking about how much he loves New England and wanting the area to be the destination for independent wrestling. Dunn is determined to destroy Dreamer by his elbow.
Sixth Contest: WWA4 Internet Champion David Ali vs. Bobby Flaco vs. Leon Ruff vs. Tommy Maserati: Ruff dropkicks Ali into the corner as all four men quickly go at it. Maserati with a dive to the floor onto Ruff. Flaco hits a springboard crossbody onto Ali and dives over the top to the floor to take out Ruff and Maserati. Ali goes to the top and takes everyone out with a dive. Ruff arm drags both Flaco and Ali followed by clotheslines to Ali in the corner. Ruff splashes on Ali in the corner. Maserati kicks Ruff a few times and kicks Ruff. Maserati head scissors Ali across the ring followed by a running knee. Flaco kicks Maserati but runs into a boot by Tommy. Flaco with a heel kick to drop Maserati. Flaco forearms Maserati in the corner and Flaco hits a springboard facebuster. Flaco nails Ali with a big boot. Flaco is uppercutted by Ali on the middle rope. Ali hooks Flaco with a release underhook suplex. Maserati kicks Ali and is met with a few strikes. Maserati gets nailed by a strike and bails to the floor. Ali clotheslines Maserati into the corner and they both go over the top to the floor. Ruff takes everyone out with a somersault dive to the floor.
Ruff rolls Ali into the ring and delivers several forearm strikes. Ruff plants Ali face first to the canvas. Ruff hits a German suplex for a two count on Ali. Maserati drops Ali with a suplex. Maserati delivers several strikes to Ali and Flaco. Ali spears Flaco after a head scissors by Maserati. Maserati kicks Ali on the apron. Maserati kicks Ruff from the apron and hits a slingshot DDT onto Ali for a near fall. Maserati blocks a Destroyer by Flaco on the apron. Flaco drops Maserati face first onto the apron. Flaco goes to the top rope and is crotched by Ruff. Ruff hooks Flaco for a brainbuster, but Maserati stops that. Ruff has Maserati on his shoulders and Flaco runs over Maserati’s body to double stomp Ali, but Ruff then tosses Maserati onto Flaco to break the cover. Ali beats on Ruff and Flaco with strikes. Ali uppercuts Flaco in the corner. Ali plants Flaco with a modified Samoan Drop. Ali uppercuts Ruff to counter a slam attempt for a near fall. Ruff tosses Flaco with a German suplex. Ruff with a slam to Maserati and Flaco double stomps Maserati. Flaco takes Ali down to the mat and locks in a surfboard. Ali has nowhere to go and Flaco wins the title! (***1/2. As expected, these guys just tossed everything they had out there and provided some great entertainment. I thought this was going to be between Ali or Ruff as they seem to be the most polished of the group. All four guys were trained by AR Fox and they are all full of great potential.)
Backstage, Christian Casanova is interviewed saying that he’s looking forward to beating up Private Party and going to the strip club. Ken Broadway says they are going to make bank and go back to the city to make more money.
Seventh Contest: The Private Party (Isaiah Kassidy & Marq Quen) vs. Christian Casanova & Ken Broadway: Casanova and Quen start off the match. Casanova knee lifts Quen a few times before keeping a headlock on. Quen head scissors Casanova followed by a dropkick. Broadway tags in and boots Quen. Kassidy tags in and arm drags Broadway followed by a hurricanrana. Casanova gets sent into the corner and is met with a kick by Kassidy from the apron. Broadway is stopped by Party and is taken down with a hurricanrana. Quen takes Casanova and Broadway out with a twisting dive to the floor. Broadway sends Kassidy into the ring post shoulder first. Casanova nails Quen with a chain and nearly wins with a Falcon Arrow. Broadway drives Quen down with a spinning backbreaker. Casanova returns to the match and continues to beat on Quen. Casanova dropkicks Quen to maintain control of the contest. Quen is driven down with a double vertical suplex. Broadway and Quen trade forearm strikes in the middle of the ring. Broadway plants Quen with a backbreaker. Casanova hits a dropkick as Broadway delivers a side Russian leg sweep for a two count on Quen.
Quen lands on his feet to counter a back suplex and Kassidy gets the hot tag to clean house. Kassidy kicks Casanova and sends Broadway into Casanova to spear his own partner. Kassidy head scissors Broadway to the floor. Kassidy hits a somersault dive to the floror. Kassidy kicks Casanova from the apron and hits a middle rope facebuster for a two count. Kassidy spin kicks Broadway and Quen enters the match. Broadway sends Kassidy to the floor. Casanova hits a head scissors on Quen and Broadway nails Quen with a running knee for a two count. Kassidy fights off both men. Broadway forearms Kassidy. Broadway boots Kassidy in the corner, but Quen takes Broadway off the middle rope with a hurricanrana and Kassidy hit a cutter. Kassidy hits the Un-Prettier on Casanova as Quen hit a 450 splash off the top onto Casanova’s back. That’s good enough for the three count. (***1/4. Well, there’s no doubt that Private Party and Casanova were the standouts here and performed really well. The repetitive moves throughout the show kind of hurts the entertainment value. I’m mostly referencing the constant middle rope cutters. This was a quality tag match regardless of that.)
Backstage, Private Party celebrate their win and they will take on any challenges.
Backstage, Sonya Strong cuts a promo about her debut for the company against Sumie Sakai. Strong is going to show why she’s here and that she is wrestling’s tomorrow.
Eighth Contest: Sumie Sakai vs. Sonya Strong: Sakai attacks Strong from behind and hits a bulldog. Sakai clotheslines Strong in the corner. Strong kicks Sakai a few times. Strong head scissors Sakai face first into the corner. Strong clotheslines Sakai in the corner and delivers a spin kick sending Sakai to the floor. Sakai hides behind fans to prevent a dive from Strong. Sakai trips Strong and traps Strong in the apron to bite Strong’s butt. Sakai chokes Strong over the top rope. Sakai hits a missile dropkick off the top rope for a two count. Sakai puts a Boston Crab on Strong and traps her left arm. Sakai is biting Strong’s hand. Strong crawls to the ropes and manages to break the hold. Sakai stomps on Strong’s back and plays to the crowd. Strong gets a rollup on Sakai for a two count. Strong forearms Sakai a few times, but gets yanked down to the mat by Sakai. Strong elbows Sakai in the corner followed by a kick and a clothesline. Strong drops Sakai with a few clotheslines. Strong delivers a Pele kick and goes to the top rope managing to hit a crossbody for a near fall.
Sakai grabs the referee and nearly sends Strong into the referee. Sakai nearly wins with a rollup after Strong almost collided with the referee. Sakai plants Strong with a fisherman buster for a near fall. Sakai kicks Strong’s leg, but Strong is able to hit an elevated package DDT for the surprise win! (**1/4. Well, I was not expecting that. Strong impressed me and that finishing move is excellent.) After the match, Sakai takes Strong down and kisses her to show respect.
Outside, Tommy Dreamer says he likes JT Dunn and has always liked Dunn for opening about being sober. Dreamer credits Dunn for coming back from rehab. Dreamer recalls booking Dunn for HOH and Dunn not showing up. Dreamer tells Dunn to not ever disrespect him again and Dunn will know what he’s about.
JT Dunn cuts a promo acknowledging saying that he did no show HOH shows that he accepted. Dunn texted Dreamer saying that he wasn’t going to show up to HOH because he hates ECW and that’s what HOH is. Dunn says that Dreamer has blacklisted him as a result and says that do not shake hands in the locker room. Dunn wonders if Dreamer is going to kill the town. Dunn thinks that Dreamer is upset that he killed ECW two times. Dunn promises to knock Dreamer out with one elbow. Dunn doesn’t care about any of the ECW icons. He’s listing a lot of ECW names and just dropping the F-word each time.
JT Dunn makes his entrance to Enter Sandman to trick the fans into thinking that The Sandman was going to be showing up. Dunn also has a kendo stick.
Main Event: XWA Heavyweight Champion JT Dunn vs. Tommy Dreamer: Dunn tosses Dreamer to the mat and goes to the corner to get away from Dreamer. Dunn elbows Dreamer in the corner. Dunn bails to the floor to avoid a big boot. Dreamer gets a microphone and tells the referee to stop counting. Dreamer notes that Dunn has broken rules and says that being in a bar brings back memories of ECW. Dreamer calls Dunn a midget and ECW gave those people a chance in this business. Dreamer suggests they go old school and wants to go hardcore, but Dunn is not liking this. Dreamer wants to do a falls count anywhere match. So, now the match is a hardcore match. Dreamer jabs Dunn several times followed by an elbow strike knocking Dunn to the floor. Dreamer spits a water into Dunn’s face. Dreamer allows a kid in the crowd to chop Dunn and he does so rather well. Dreamer misses a chop and hits a post holding the building up. Dunn stomps on Dreamer’s hand in the ring to keep control of the contest. Dunn continues to stomp on Dreamer in the corner.
Dreamer fights back with chops and misses a spear in the corner hitting the ring post shoulder first. Dunn wraps Dreamer’s arm around the ring post. Dreamer clotheslines Dunn and continues to beat on Dunn with right hands. Dunn elbows Dreamer, but Dreamer plants Dunn with a cutter for a two count. Dreamer goes to the floor and goes up the steps to go backstage to get something. Dreamer returns with a chain and a chair. Dreamer jabs Dunn in the midsection and lays a chair over Dunn’s body to whip the chair with the chain. Dunn blocks being sent into the chair and drop toe holds Dreamer face first into the chair for a near fall. Dunn has a kendo stick and whacks Dreamer on the leg. Dunn misses a shot and Dreamer hits a side Russian leg sweep. Dreamer nails Dunn in the midsection and over the back with the stick. Dunn plants Dreamer with a cutter of his own and the referee gets knocked down by an elbow from Dunn.
Dunn taunts Dreamer and is met with a low blow. Dreamer plants Dunn with a DDT onto the steel chair. A second referee comes out but Dunn kicks out at two. Dreamer brings in a plastic table. Ethan Page comes in and low blows Dreamer to help Dunn. Dunn decks Dreamer with an elbow strike and wins the match. After the match, Dunn and Page stomp on Dreamer. Matt Tremont enters the ring and makes the save for Dreamer. (*1/4. I’m relieved that Dunn went over, but he needed help to do so. The action wasn’t very good and the hardcore nature wasn’t really executed very well. Dunn is a really good heel and I can see him thriving in this company.)
Tommy Dreamer gets a microphone and says that he doesn’t want to have his music played because he lost. Dreamer says that JT Dunn has him a little bit mad. Dreamer notes he’s already wrestled nine days in January and he’s not booked on the date of WHAT next show. Dreamer suggests that JT Dunn find a partner and he’ll find a partner. Dreamer tells the fans to go to the website and he’ll make that person his partner. Dreamer tells a fan that his mother was double teamed by Balls Mahoney and Sandman. Dreamer will be back next month for WHAT.
Backstage, JT Dunn is with Ethan Page and they are walking. Page says that Dunn is a savior and that wrestling has a tomorrow because of people like them and not Dreamer.
For a debut show, I felt this was a good start with several solid matches. The matches felt a little similar with a lot of the same spots taking place often times in back to back matches. However, that’s an easy fix by producing the matches a little more tightly. WHAT has some good talent to work with and I’m excited to see how show number two plays out.
Thanks for reading.