Well last week we had my favorite episode of MLW Fusion recently. This one however, promises to pay off some storylines so we can mostly clean the slate going into Battle Riot.
Low Ki looks to get a championship and $60,000 dollars in this episode, which would also make Salina de la Renta happy. While the other story that comes to a head is Jimmy Havoc finally getting his hands on Tom Lawlor, and if Lawlor can maintain his number 1 status in the MLW Top 10.
Time to find out what happens.
Kiki Roberts vs Kahuna Khan
The “prospects” or jobbers square off and as soon as they shake hands, the lights go red and Su Yung’s music hits. Thank God, we get Zeda Zhang and Su Yung beating the hell out of this dumb looking jobbers.
Zeda and Su make another statement, and I really enjoy the fact that they attack men, and completely destroy them. Apparently going by Kodokushi Death Squad and I’m not even mad. Death by beautiful Asian women seems good to me.
Stud Stable seen in the back, Parrow and the Dirty Blondes try to intimidate Fred Yehi until Tom Lawlor and Simon Gotch show up. They hand Yehi a Team Filthy hoodie, the guys shake on it and Gotch asks for Yehi’s mask as trade. Seems like Yehi has joined the team.
Off the commercial they show Shane Strickland showing up to the building for his match with Low Ki.
Then we get a summary preview of the Jimmy Havoc/Tom Lawlor storyline
Grudge Fight: Tom Lawlor vs Jimmy Havoc
After a little banter, Havoc clocks Lawlor with a forearm that sends him to the outside, followed by a Suicide Dive. Havoc throws a few chairs in the ring and the two men trade strikes amongst the crowd.
Havoc grabs a piece of plywood, a few more weapons and even finds a cheese grater. Lawlor gets the better of the exchange, and takes the cheese grater to Havoc’s forehead. Lawlor puts Havoc’s arm through a chair and applies a Double Wristlock, which Jimmy only breaks by clawing at Lawlor’s eyes.
Jimmy then finds a stapler and tries to use it, but Filthy Tom reverses that too. The more Havoc tries to introduce different weapons, they more they get used against him as Lawlor staples a brochure to Havoc’s head. But as they move back into the ring, Lawlor catches the grater to the balls.
After piling up a few chairs, Jimmy tries the Acid Rainmaker, but misses and Lawlor counters with a German Suplex onto the previously mentioned chairs. Filthy leads the plywood in the corner and tries to put Havoc in a position. Jimmy fights it off, gets put in a Sleeper Hold, but manages to grab the paper from earlier and give Lawlor paper cuts to break the hold.
Now since he sufficiently sliced open Tom’s hands, he gets some lemons and squirts lemon juice into the cut. Next new toy is a pizza cutter that gets used against Havoc, but all in all this match is just a collection of spots with weapons and no real flow. Both men are cut open as Lawlor hits a sideslam onto chairs, but before he can finish things Havoc hits the Acid Rainmaker out of nowhere.
The match ends abruptly and could be due to Havoc seemingly getting cut bad. The plywood was never a factor and the match was generally just spots and spectacle.
Winner: Havoc via Acid Rainmaker
Rating: ** 1/4
Coming off the commercial, Sami Callihan reveals that he’s the one that attacked Shane Strickland. He’s sick of just making friends he wants to make money and doesn’t like what Shane has become.
Kotto Brazil, Barrington Hughes and Shane Strickland are caught back stage reacting to Callihan’s reveal. Shane has an idea, and they all walk off to discuss battle plans.
Low Ki seen warming up for his match, as Salina de la Renta approaches him to remind him about the 60,000 ways she has to insure Shane loses.
$60,000 Bounty MLW Heavyweight Championship Match: Low Ki vs Shane Strickland (c)
Low Ki mockingly starts a Swerve chant and smiles big at Strickland. After about a minute of smack talk and posturing, Low Ki slaps Swerve and Strickland returns a multitude of strikes.
Strickland catches a punch into an Arm Drag, transitioning into an Arm Breaker as he then pulls him by the suspenders and throws him in the corner. After a few more strikes from Strickland, Low Ki manages to get in a few strikes and begins working over Shane in the corner. A Scoop Slam and few strikes allow Low Ki to give a cocky cover, that only gets 1. But working over the champion with headbutts, kicks, chops and elbows continues. It’s been a solid 3 minutes of Low Ki lighting up Strickland like the dummy from 3 Ninjas.
— Major League Wrestling (@MLW) July 13, 2018
The referee applies the standing 10 count, and Swerve gets up by 6, but Low Ki keeps the hits coming. Swerve tries to get space by dropping Low Ki onto the apron, but Low Ki ties him up with a Dragon Sleeper through the ropes, followed by a Springboard kick. Ki drops his guard for a bit as the referee gives the standing 10 count again, so Shane pops up and starts landing a barrage of strikes.
Low Ki counters some of the momentum with the roll through Double Foot Stomp into a near fall. Continuing to get a little cocky Ki grabs Strickland through the ropes, but Strickland tosses him to the outside. Handstand Headscissors Takeover from the apron to the floor from Swerve, might finally give him the first real opportunity to put in offense.
Strickland tears Low Ki’s shirt, lays in some strikes and then moves to the corner to reign down punches. Strickland executes a very nice Half and Half Release Suplex for only 2. Shane catapults Low Ki into the corner, but Ki lands on the middle turnbuckle and jumps backwards to nail Strickland with a Double Stomp for a near fall.
Rolling Cutter attempt 1 gets countered, but a different angle Rolling Cutter gets Swerve a 2 count. Shane goes to the top, attempts Swerve Stomp but misses and continues to sell his right knee. Low Ki lands a shot to the back of Shane’s head, measures the champion and ends the match with the Switchblade kick.
New champion, and $60,000 richer, Low Ki.
Winner: Low Ki via Switchblade Kick
Rating: *** 3/4
Well this saw a fairly convincing end to both of the storylines that were leading into it. Havoc got his revenge on Lawlor and regardless of if I liked the match or not, there will be people that enjoyed the spectacle. As for Low Ki versus Shane, it was hurt a bit by the fact that crowd was generally silent. Schiavone and Boccini tried to say they were just tense because of the high stakes of the match. But making less noise than a Japanese crowd really doesn’t translate well on TV. But either way, still not a bad show, it just had a different feel than all the others.
Either way, we have a new champion, an immediate feud for the former champion to give him some space to breathe and Battle Riot to look forward to next week. I believe they said a 2 Hour Special, so that’s already a positive indication for MLW that BeinSports is giving them an extra hour only 3 months into the shows run.
Ring Warriors: Episode 3 Review
As I prepared for a drive to Guthrie, Oklahoma for a show I sit down for a cup of coffee and new episode of Ring Warriors. We open the show with a promotion of the Grand Championship tournament and get promised two quarterfinal matches in this hour. Our commentary team includes Austin Aries again this week. Ken Resnik finally gets introduced before he speaks with Dante Brown and Michael Tarver. Michael Tarver is still jacked to the gills and he can cut a promo. A cheesy promo, but a promo. Same goes for Wes Brisco but he doesn’t sound quite as confident.
Quarter Final Match: Michael Tarver w/Dante Brown vs Wes Brisco
Wes Brisco comes out like a white-hot babyface. I really hate that Wes wears his tights over his boots. Tarver wearing MMA gloves doesn’t make sense at all. If you’re legitimately trying to hurt someone like the character you play, why would you wear gloves the insulate your punches and stop landing a knuckle on a cheekbone or chin? I’m not sure how stiff Tarver really is but his kicks look brutal. They’ve been going back and forth all match. I don’t remember Tarver being this decent of a worker. I popped for Aries’s line about rather having Bronco Lubich as the referee. We go to a nice cinematic shot of the announce team as Wes Brisco wins by an Indian Death Lock he calls the Brisco Lock.
Winner: Wes Brisco
The Hotshots (Cassidy Riley & Chase Stevens) vs The Demi-God of Death and Dark Child
I will say The Hotshots have the build I like to see in wrestling, they don’t look like bodybuilders but they look powerful. Reverend Joseph Nelson apparently a southern preacher gimmicked manager sends Funnybone known now as The Demi-God of Death and Dark Child fka as Chance Prophet. Not much has changed with Dark Child’s looks since my first review of Ring Warriors. This match is an all-out brawl. Cassidy Riley sets up for a tag team move and Chase Stevens has to wait for Dark Child to get in position to pick his ankle which looked kind of clunky. They set up the move after the disqualification by Dark Child pushing the referee. Then Stevens misses the neckbreaker when they finally get to hit the move.
Winners: The Hotshots
We now get a pre-tape on the Slambino family. They come to apparently extort Joe’s New York Pizza in Las Vegas. The owner seemingly convinces them to make a pizza instead of taking the money from the register. One of the Slambino’s presumably the boss puts cheese on the pizza before the sauce causing the whole family to go off on him. They all leave and he leaves taking the uncooked pizza with him saying “I’ll cook it at home!” This whole scene took any honest heel heat a mob family gimmick could get out from under them.
Quarter Finals Match: Jeff Cobb vs Luke Hawx
We start off with an interview with Jeff Cobb. I popped when Jeff said that Luke Hawk “Ain’t no altar boy.” then how convenient as the interviewer mentions Luke being a big dude here comes Luke towering over Jeff Cobb. Just like that, it’s time for the main event. Classic Jeff Cobb once we go through a series of tie-ups he lands a wrestling takedown as you’d expect from a 2004 Olympic Wrestler from Guam. Luke Hawx got major air on the dropkick. Most dropkicks land somewhere near the chest, Luke has his feet on either side of Cobb’s head. Both men threw many variations of the suplex. Jeff Cobb shows his athleticism with a standing moonsault. Luke Hawx stands on the outside of the second rope then moonsaults into the ring onto Cobb in a anything you can do I can do better moment. Luke Hawx shows his ring generalship by grabbing the rope instead of kicking out this late in the match. Cobb hits a standing dropkick which hits Hawx in the chest while he’s sitting on the top rope. Another pop when Aries mentions giving Luke Hawx “Option C” to allow him to win the title. While on the outside Austin Aries starts distracting Luke Hawx allowing Jeff Cobb to slide in before the count out. This was hands down my favorite match so far in both episodes I have seen.
Winner: Jeff Cobb
This felt very much like an old-school Southern wrestling show. Wes Brisco, The Hotshots, and Luke Hawx are definitely Southern style workers and the people they worked with worked with that very well. Again the cinematic views before and after each break, whether they were shot from drone or helicopter, are stunning. Ring Warriors is quickly becoming one of my favorite wrestling promotions on TV today.
- Wrestling with the Revolution from the desk of James Southard
Sonoran Championship Wrestling BATTLE|LINES Results (9/21/18)
SCW (Sonoran Championship Wrestling) returned to The World Famous Nile Theater on Friday night, September 21, for BATTLE|LINES! Tensions were high all night, and the rowdy crowd in attendance were treated so some amazing action.
By the end of the night we had a new (but reluctant) tag team, fans begging for more EJ-Calder, one pissed off challenger, and the revelation of perhaps the strongest force ever to hit SCW…
Navajo Warrior pinned Alex Salyers
Salyers reminded everyone of the reasons he asked for “the biggest, baddest, and most respected man in Arizona,” and then promptly punched him in the face. The legendary competitor proved too much in the end.
SBR & Cole Wright (with Travis Lee) beat Awesome Andy & Aguila
Two brand new teams in SCW brought the action early and never stopped, bringing the fans to their feet on multiple occasions. In the end, Travis sprayed Andy with Body Spray, leading his team to victory. After the match it was obvious that SBR & Cole had no clue what Travis was up to.
The Heat Seat with Pete The Heat and special guest Sergio Vega
Pete The Heat welcomed Sergio Vega, who explained that he was attacked at the border on his way to August’s Big Trouble In Little Mesa. He didn’t see the attacker, but did notice that Jay Garland was wearing a Sergio Vega shirt when he left the building with Thugnificent that night. The Hawaiian Lion entered the ring to remind Sergio to focus on their match later in the evening, and that the Arizona legend fully intended on ending the year-plus reign of the champion.
SOS (with June Jackson) pinned Morgan (with Adrenalyn) in a No Disqualification Match
June Jackson announced that she would not be participating in the match, but “supervising” as her best friend, SOS, battled Morgan instead. Morgan didn’t come alone, bringing back-up on the form of Adrenalyn! All four women battled throughout The Nile, but in the end a (legal) chairshot from SOS allowed her to score the pin after June blasted Adrenalyn with a tire iron.
EJ Sparks and Calder McColl battled to a time limit draw
In another first time ever encounter, EJ and Calder brought the fight in a big way, neither letting up for the duration of the match. Calder connected with an Air Raid Crash, but EJ kicked out of the pinfall attempt right before time expired. Calder was frustrated, but the two men embraced to end a match that fans are already asking to see again.
Toom E Guci addressed the crowd
SCW co-owner and general manager Toom E Guci announced that on October 19, we will celebrate two years of Sonoran Championship Wrestling at Run The Gauntlet. Competitors will compete in the biggest Gauntlet ever, spanning the entire evening, and the winner will have the ability to make any match they choose. Toom revealed that the first match of Run The Gauntlet.
SCW Tag Team Champions Jay Garland & The MITH and Impulse Champion Thugnificent fought The Brothers Of Wrestling (Evan Daniels & R-Three) and LJ Ramos to a no-contest
Toom E Guci got the answers he was seeking when these six men jumped into action. LJ Ramos was (seemingly) injured during the match, and was rendered unable to continue and helped to the back. The 3-on-2 advantage proved to be too much for the BOW, and when all hope was lost LJ returned to the ring! Once LJ was tagged in, he stood face-to-face with The Man In The Hood, but turned around and attacked Evan Daniels! Garland, Thugnificent, MITH, and Ramos maintained a 4-on-2 advantage until EJ Sparks ran to confront the four men. Before EJ could do anything, June Jackson snuck in and hit EJ with a low blow, leading to a 5-on-1 attack on the fan favorite. Jay Garland took the mic and revealed that Genesys was reformed, much to the dismay of Toom E Guci.
SCW Heavyweight Champion Sergio Vega pinned The Hawaiian Lion to retain his championship
After defeating Ricky Mandel to earn this championship opportunity, The Hawaiian Lion took the fight to the champion, but there was no backing down for Sergio Vega. Lion connected with an Axe Bomber late in the match, but was slow to cover. Sergio kicked out, but Lion immediately latched onto a Coquina Clutch. Sergio got to the ropes multiple times, and referee Scott Johnson had to pull Lion off of Sergio. Lion protested, but that gave Sergio the opening he needed to score the victor. Lion snapped after the match, taking out his frustrations on the champion and refusing to release the Clutch. The Navajo Warrior hit the ring to finally break Lion from the hold, restraining him before he could do more damage to the champion, the official, and potentially his own career.
Sonoran Championship Wrestling returns to The Nile Theater on Friday, October 19, 2018 for Run The Gauntlet! Don’t miss this night of non-stop action as the SCW roster attempts to Run The Gauntlet from start to finish.