Welcome back to another edition of my Wrestling Quickies as we have another stacked collection of matches for your reading pleasure.
The last one I did went over well with adding ROH into the mix with the Lethal and Ospreay match along with stuff from AAA and W-1. Now I got some nice surprises in this one lined up for you all and you’ll never know what’ll pop up in my quickies, so be sure to not miss them.
So let’s get started, shall we?
Tag Team Match
TAJIRI & Kagetsu vs. Minoru Tanaka & Konami
Review: Our first match for the evening is a show in Japan titled GPS Growth4, which is a Freelancing show that took place on September 26th and I decided to cover the main event of the show due to knowing the people participating in the match. We have TAJIRI (Yes, the one we all know and love) teaming up with our current World of Stardom Champion, Kagetsu as they take on Minoru Tanaka and Konami. Stardom was kind enough to upload this match on their website and how could I say no to watching and adding it on here? Which of these teams will win?
Konami and TAJIRI started it off and he would quickly tag in Kagetsu for the two women to really start it off as the to would have a kicking contest to see who would win and it was Konami who came out on top and the two would tag back in the men. When TAJIRI and Minoru came into the ring, they would have a slow paced match with just chain wrestling for most of it. Kagetsu would do her trademark spitting water into her opponent’s face and the referee, but she would also do it to Minoru right after and later on, Minoru got payback by doing it to Kagetsu.
I honestly thought the match had a couple of slip-ups like when Minoru got the hot tag and went for a Dropkick to Kagetsu, it looked like he missed and she told it anyway despite ducking it and despite stuff like that, it was still a lot of fun and focused more on Kagetsu and Konami since they deserve a chance to shine while the two vets worked with them a little to give them that little rub. TAJIRI and Konami are in the ring now as TAJIRI spits green mist into her eyes and hits his Buzzsaw Kick to knock her down and go for the cover, but he stops himself to tag in Kagetsu now who sprays blue mist into her eyes before hitting the Oedo Coaster as she gets the win for herself and TAJIRI.
Rating: Eric Bischoff and three quarters
Tag Team Match
CCK (Chris Brookes & Jonathan Gresham) vs Ringkampf (Timothy Thatcher & WALTER)
Review: We now travel to Germany for the next match which is another tag team match from wXw or Westside Extreme Wrestling and is probably one of my favorite promotions currently right now since they usually deliver with good quality shows and matches, plus it’s the home of two of my favorite wrestlers of 2018 and one of them is WALTER. This match was apart of their tag league tournament on the October 5th show as we got Ringkampf taking on CCK, Chris Brookes, and Jonathan Gresham. So which of these two teams would get points for the league?
One thing I can say about this match is that it is aggressive and I mean that in a good way with CCK and Ringkampf deliver a lot of powerful strikes to each other in this match and showing why they’re both considered one of the top teams in wrestling right now. Timothy is one of the best technical wrestlers right now and the knowledge and experience he has in the ring just shows that from how he was handling CCK while WALTER would just overpower the both of these men to make them a threat to this league. CCK also did well with how Gresham and Brookes work well together in the ring as a tag team with their exciting athletic ability while also knowing when to be technical with their opponent.
Still, it’s an entertaining match and a great way to start off their tag league. WALTER would manhandle Gresham and picks him up for a Powerbomb as Timothy hits a European Uppercut before Greshman landed on the mat and goes for the cover until Brookes broke the count. Gresham would get the crowd off their feet when he would catch WALTER for a German Suplex and even hits it to give them that little moment. Timothy is in the ring now as Gresham would apply the Octopus Stretch onto him and as WALTER tries to break it up, Brookes would catch him in the same hold between the ropes while Timothy keeps trying to fight out of it, but he couldn’t take it anymore as he tapped out!
Rating: Eric Bischoff and a half
Best Two out of Three Falls Match
Michael Elgin vs. Ultimo Guerrero
Review: Our next stop is in Mexico for the promotion CMLL for their October 12th show, Super Viernes with our usual Two out of Three Falls Match like how CMLL does it as our main event of that show is between Michael Elgin and Ultimo Guerrero. Does Elgin pick up the win or will Ultimo get it?
The first fall was mostly technical with how they were in the ring together until they were both in the outside where Elgin slammed the guardrail onto him and oversold it despite it not fully hitting him. This one would last about seven minutes as Ultimo would get the first fall by making Elgin tap out to the Pulpo Guerrero. The second fall doesn’t last as long since it was mostly the two beating each other down until Ultimo threw Elgin over the barricade and would try to dive over but got caught by Elgin and threw him over to make him crash down onto the floor. Elgin would stand on the barricade to hit a Senton onto him and then threw him back into the ring so he could hit the Elgin Bomb and gets the second fall as we’re now tied up.
Elgin started to dominate the beginning of the third fall and even hits his Powerbomb onto the entrance ramp while taunting the crowd after to get the fans fully behind Ultimo. Elgin would hit another Elgin Bomb into the ring and Ultimo would surprisingly kick out of it. Elgin and Ultimo really do have good chemistry in the ring together and Elgin really does transition well to the Mexican style of wrestling since he’s no stranger to it due to being in AAA for a bit also, but I really enjoyed their work here in the ring. Elgin would have Ultimo on the turnbuckle to go for a Hurricanrana but Ultimo would catch his hands to hit a Powerbomb but Elgin kicked out of it. Elgin went to the top rope but Ultimo quickly follows behind him to hit an Inverted Suplex off the top rope and he goes for the pin as Ultimo wins the match!
Rating: Bruce Prichard
International Ribbon Tag Team Title Match
Hamuko Hoshi & Mochi Miyagi (c) vs. Hiragi Kurumi & Tsukushi
Review: It’s been a while since I’ve had Ice Ribbon talked about from my stuff and was kinda hard to drop them after one show and it wasn’t bad or anything, just had other promotions lined up and it was getting too much without a balance. But now I get to talk about them in this set of quickies and it’ll most likely be where you’ll see them pop up from time to time unless there’s a rave about one of their big shows. So, we will be talking about the Ice Ribbon show from October 8th which was called Oktober Ice Ribbon Fest 2018 and the main event was the Lovely Butchers defending the International Ribbon Tag Team Championships against Hiragi Kurumi and Tsukushi. Will we have new champs or will they retain?
What’s this, no corner screen with the female commentators and using actual commentators for this match? This is a sudden surprise for me since that was one of my big problems with Ice Ribbon with that little corner screen being covered to watch them do commentary when it’s unnecessary to see and loses focus of the match. I thought the Lovely Butchers did a fine job showing why they’re the champions while Tsukushi and Hiragi seemed like they work just as fine as well. The match itself wasn’t great, but I thought it was still a solid bout with nice tag team wrestling involved along with some good chemistry, but still felt like they could’ve done more if they were given a little bit of extra time instead of about eleven minutes for their main event. Mochi would have Hiragi up on the turnbuckle as she hits the Styles Clash off the ropes to make it connect and the Lovely Butchers retain the titles.
Rating: Eric Bischoff
Pete Dunne vs. Ilja Dragunov
Review: We’re now in England as we talk about one of the biggest shows for PROGRESS which was Chapter 76: Hello Wembley. The show was stacked from top to bottom with great matches and moments but we’re only going to be covering one of the matches and the match I’m covering is the one I was more excited for which is WWE United Kingdom Champion, Pete Dunne taking on wXw’s Ilja Dragunov. A lot of you people already know Pete Dunne by now, but not many of you know Ilja Dragunov and he’s the other favorite I was talking about at the previous match involving wXw and this guy just has the look of a star, has charisma, and can work a great match while being a good talker. When this match got announced, I was super excited to see it unfold finally and now that moment has come. Who wins in this special dream match?
This match was more of a battle for supremacy as both of these men were considered some of the best in Europe right now and seeing these two battle it out in that fashion is what made it exciting from bell to bell. Even just seeing them exploding with energy soon as the bell rang with them punching each other right away with Ilja getting the upper hand with it and dove to the outside later on. The match, while had great wrestling, involved also treated it like a fight with the strikes both of them would do to each other and trying to push their limits on one another. Ilja made his PROGRESS debut in this match and he would fit in right away playing the heel in the match to get the crowd to hate him while showing the fans how good he really is in the ring while Dunne is just being Dunne proving why he’s UK’s best wrestler at this point in time in this match.
Around the middle of the match, Dunne would even get some heat into the match when he grabbed Ilja’s arms so he could stomp his face down on the mat to make him feel defenseless and the fans seem to have disliked that type of thing for this match. Ilja’s manager would hit Dunne with the WWE United Kingdom Championship when the referee wasn’t looking and Ilja would capitalize on that but Dunne kicked out. The manager would start yelling at Dunne until he grabbed his hand to snap his fingers and would hit Ilja with a Bitter End but turned it into a Tombstone when he had him mid-air, but Ilja still kicked out of it. Ilja would hit the Burning Hammer and Sickle for a two count as he ran towards him for Dunne to catch him into a Triangle Choke which Ilja escaped out of. Ilja would later onrush towards him again for Dunne to catch him once again for the Triangle Choke but he shifted his body around so he was sitting on top of him to grab his fingers to snap them over and over again until Ilja couldn’t take it anymore and tapped out!
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a half
Impact World Title Match
Austin Aries (c) vs. Johnny Impact
Review: You heard it right, I will be talking about Impact Wrestling in this set of quickies like I did with ROH at the previous one. The show took place at Bound for Glory as Austin Aries is set to defend his Impact World Championship against Johnny Impact in the main event of this big PPV. I don’t follow Impact as much as I would like but from what I’ve seen with their recent work, it looks like they’ve been slowly getting better and I’m glad that’s been the case lately. This rivalry though has sparked some personal stuff between the two to get the crowd into the match more and now it’s time to see how it unfolds. Will Aries retain again or will we finally have a new champion?
I don’t get a chance to watch a lot of Johnny these days but from I’ve seen with him lately, it’s good to see he’s still in excellent shape and still doing the stuff I normally see him do while still finding ways to be creative, like how he stepped between the ring apron and guardrail to hit a Moonsault right onto Aries and it looked like a kick but still great with the impact. Aries really hasn’t changed a whole lot except for slowly upping his heel game in the match and knowing how to draw heat from the crowd.
I don’t watch too much Impact these days as I said previously due to not always being home and focused on writing other coverages, but I do watch clips and keep up to date with them when I can and this match was great and I do hope they find success with this new reboot they’ve been having this year and have been doing much better than ROH. Aries would hit the 450 Splash for Johnny to kick out of it at two and he would eventually hit his Starship Pain and it looked like he had it, but Aries grabbed the rope before the referee could count to three. The match is getting down to the wire now with close calls as Aries now hits his Brainbuster for Johnny to have his foot on the rope before the three-count also. Aries would then apply the Last Chancery for Johnny to break the hold again and Aries would hit a Suicide Dive onto Johnny’s wife, Taya Valkyrie which gets Johnny pissed and attacked him on the outside before taking him in to hit a Brainbuster and hits one more Starship Pain for the pin, and we have a new champion!
Once the bell rang, Aries would no sell the move and flip off Don Callis before walking out of the ring. Some people are saying it’s a work while others are claiming it to be a shoot since Aries’ contract would expire after the event and hasn’t shown up at the tapings. However, another source has claimed that Aries is doing a loose cannon type of gimmick where he would do this stuff on purpose and then wrestle for other promotions to keep the gimmick intact and not sure if I’ll fully buy it but we’ll see what happens, but also wouldn’t be surprised if it was, in fact, a shoot and not as bad as Low Ki. Congrats to Johnny Impact, hope you have a good reign.
Rating: Bruce Prichard and a half
GHC Heavyweight Title Match
Takashi Sugiura (c) vs. Katsuhiko Nakajima
Review: We return to Japan as we talk about another Japanese promotion, NOAH. If you have seen Hi5ame’s articles popping up on the website about NOAH, you’ll know what it’s all about and if you haven’t read them, then you’re missing out and you should check out her work since it’s great stuff and some of the best I’ve read whenever she has something posted. Anyway, we’ll be talking about the GHC Heavyweight Championship match that took place on the October 4th show which also had their Global Junior League finals taking place as Takashi Sugiura is set to defend the title against Katsuhiko Nakajima. Takashi is honestly my favorite champion in all of 2018 with how impressive he has been with his title matches since each match told a different story in the ring and each defense is just a work of art, he’s even a better champion than Kenny Omega and not many people will watch NOAH or his title reign and they’re missing out on that which is a shame. NOAH really needs a streaming service next. So will Takashi deliver us another classic while retaining at the same time or will we have a new champion?
The progression for Nakajima since he lost the title over a year ago has been an amazing experience seeing him turning from this vanilla like babyface to this heel with a new attitude to raise his confidence and made himself grow more as a character and a wrestler. These two would just beat the crap out of each other mostly with stiff kicks all around by both of these men, slaps, elbows, you name it and they did it in the match to give it that fighting type of feel while telling a great story in the ring. Takashi would once again give us a unique title defense to make all of his title matches have a different feel with completely different stories to tell you how great his reign as GHC Heavyweight Champion has been so far.
Nakajima would wrestle this match rather fairly until near the end of the match as he would use a weapon on Takashi to hit him with it over and over again to eventually choke him with it until the referee would finally turn around to see what he was doing as Nakajima threw the weapon out of the ring to go back to beating down the champion. Nakajima would deliver slaps to his face to get him down on his knees from the beating has was given would even get on top of him to keep delivering punches onto him. Nakajima would then have Takashi get up so he could kick him, but Takashi collapsed on the floor ducking the kick before it would connect and it looks like he’s out of it. Eventually, Takashi would get back up for Nakajima go for another kick but Takashi would catch his foot and would apply the Ankle Lock on him as he holds onto it tightly. It looked like Nakajima was going to break out of it but Takashi would land on the mat to hold him in place, still holding onto the submission with Nakajima being unable to move, he held on for as long as he could and had no choice but to tap out and Takashi retains once again. Beautiful match and probably his best title defense for this run. I hope to see a rematch if Nakajima wins the Global League.
Rating: Jim Cornette
BxB Hulk vs. Shingo Takagi
Review: Mat, don’t you already cover Dragon Gate? Why is this on here? Good question and I actually have the answer for you which is, I had a bit of a busy week last week and the Dragon Gate network takes their live shows off after a week and brings them back a month later, which means I was unfortunately unable to get to it in time. So instead of waiting a month for it to come back to the service, I’m just gonna move forward and only talk about the match that was important on the show, Shingo’s final Dragon Gate match. Before Shingo Takagi made the jump to New Japan Pro Wrestling, he would have his last match with the company he’s been known for as he fights on the October 7th show against his former rival, BxB Hulk. Will Shingo win his final match or does Hulk take it?
I gotta be honest here, it felt a little bit underwhelming and yeah the match was good, but I felt like the atmosphere of it wasn’t as impactful or nothing fully stood out and didn’t really have a bigger feel for a final match of his and it hurt it a little bit for me. Anyway, it was still solid enough to get over despite it being just a regular match with nothing special in it in-ring wise until the end, but it was mostly the story that helped carry it due to their history together in the ring. Around the last five minutes of the match or so was when it would start picking up to get better with Shingo hitting Hulk with everything in his arsenal, he would even hit two MADE IN JAPAN’s in a row to try and put him away but Hulk would kick out of it at two, even kicked out of the Pumping Bomber as well. Hulk would start getting in some offense now with his series of kicks all onto his head and would hit his First Flash which Shingo would kick out of right away before the referee could even get to one. Shingo would start yelling at Hulk which leads to Hulk kicking him more and hits one more First Flash to pin Shingo and end his Dragon Gate career.
Shingo Takagi was in Dragon Gate since 2004 when he made his wrestling debut and has been with the company ever since while doing a little bit of freelance work here and there. He’s been with the company for fourteen years and he’s done everything he could at Dragon Gate, which now means that it’s time for him to move on and do more with his career to show the world more of who he is. He made his return to NJPW on October 8th as he joined Tetsuya Naito in Los Ingobernables de Japon where he would now be considered a Junior Heavyweight and is now teaming up with BUSHI for their Jr Tag League. I’m kinda iffy about him being stuck in the junior division, but I’m sure it’s only a short-term thing since the heavyweight scene is stacked right now and I still wish him luck. Thank you, Shingo Takagi, for your contributions to Dragon Gate and still hope for more success in your career.
Rating: Eric Bischoff and a quarter
Overall: Despite some of the matches being underwhelming, the majority of the matches I’ve watched have been either enjoyable or great matches to give me plenty of excitement for this version of the quickies and could be a while for me to top it or have it this stacked, but you’ll never know what to expect.
Favorite Match: Takashi Sugiura vs. Katsuhiko Nakajima
Least Favorite Match: Hamuko Hoshi & Mochi Miyagi vs. Hiragi Kurumi & Tsukushi