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Andrew’s Top Albums, TV Shows, Wrestlers and Matches of 2020

2020 needed to contain a plethora of entertainment options. When movie watching was a little weird, let’s see what TV, music and of course wrestling offered to make Andrew’s lists!



Last year I did one of these but it was driven off of a big movie year. This year, the movie going experience wasn’t really the same and that took a lot of the joy of going out to watch new releases for me. But luckily, I already had a contingency plan when I was forcing myself to a degree to find albums released in 2020 that I enjoy beyond what I’ve been listening to for decades.

So we changed out the movies for albums this year, and let’s be serious, all of these forms of entertainment helped us cope with the more sequestered normal of 2020. Now let’s get to the lists!

Top 10 Albums:

  1. Black Phantom: Zero Hour Is Now – Now I stumbled upon this early in the year when I decided I needed to stop living in my musical bubble claiming all new stuff is terrible. This doesn’t do a lot to refute that since the singer is an Italian Bruce Dickinson. It’s scary how much he sounds like Brave New World forward era Dickinson with occasional Helloween vibes thrown in. Even though this sounds like it belongs in the 80s, it still came out this year and is fantastic to listen to if you like galloping bass lines, Iron Maiden and just really solid song construction with powerful vocals. This album literally just left a grin on my face since it’s so damn good and was definitely a random find. Notable Songs: Schattenjager // Hordes of Destruction
  2. Mindless Sinner: Poltergeist – So this is in a similar vein to the number 1 album this year. Apparently this band has been around since 1981, but they took a few breaks and about four band name changes. So between Purple Haze, Genocide, Mindless and now Mindless Sinner, along with gaps from 1990-2001 and again in 2004-2014, this band has been a bit of an enigma. They’ve apparently changed their styles a few times, but this album is interesting. It’s an interesting combination of like Mercyful Fate/King Diamond at times, and classic heavy metal in a bit of a Helloween style, notably on Heavy Metal Mayhem. So I suppose for a band that is a bit of a chameleon within itself, the fact the album itself moves between styles, shouldn’t really be a surprise. Style shifting aside, the album never feels jarring, and is a solid old school adventure. Even when they shift sounds, they stay within a progressive wheelhouse to keep the songs sounding like they belong together and not just a weird mismosh of ideas. Notable Songs: Valkyrie // Hammer of Thor
  3. Jelly Roll: A Beautiful Disaster – The title of the album, almost perfectly describes the vibe of it. Jelly Roll has a wonderful mixture of soulful country singing, deep lyrics about drugs, depression and great imagery of fighting with demons in general. In a year like 2020, where everyone had new struggles, Jelly lends words to some big issues to help everyone get through things. Notable Songs: Bottle & Mary Jane // Creature
  4. Pink Cigs: Pink Cigs – Straight out of Sheffield, England, via the 1970s, these guys really bring that low key groove driven southern/stoner rock back to life while staying very true to the generation they grab inspiration from. If you’re fans of Thin Lizzy, Orange Goblin, Clutch and Black Water Rising, this is probably an album you’ll appreciate. Much of the album is guitar driven, but the drum is never lost, so much as they even backload a few of the more drum driven songs. It feels like it was taken straight from the time period they are paying homage to, and that’s always cool when a newer band can pull off retro and even dirty up the sound so it sounds like the era in more than just composition. Beautiful 70s groove rock album. Being that the band has only been around since 2016, we should expect more assuming they stay together, and one can only imagine with more time to blend together, the product can only get better. Notable Songs: Lazy Lover // Black Widow
  5. Yuri Gagarin: The Outskirts of Reality– Well now we have a unique addition to this list that isn’t my usual style, but it really caught me this year. The Outskirts of Reality is like a psychedelic space adventure within an album. Comprised of only 5 “songs” they are more just parts of the larger adventure of the creation. If you don’t mind being taken on an interesting interdimensional experimental stoner style adventure sonically, strap in and take this in. Since each song feeds into the larger story of the album, it’s a little hard to break down a “notable songs”, but since the album only clocks in at just shy of 45 minutes, it’s not exactly a large time sink to just give it a shot. Again, not my usual style, but it really grabbed me, hence why it made the Top 5.
  6. Testament: Titans of Creation – This isn’t Testament’s first strike, but damn is it still deadly. Saying the album is a typical Testament album, is selling it a little short. It’s consistent, it’s attacking, but they do add a few different heavy metal tempos and stylings to keep things flowing. Maybe nothing becomes a new favorite, but the entire album is enjoyable and you won’t be skipping any song. Notable Songs: Children of the Next Level // Dream Deceiver
  7. Sepultura: Quadra – A clever concept where the album was broken into 4 parts (hence Quadra), where it was a mixture of 4 different styles they’ve explored through their 35+ year career. Thrash, Groove, Progressive and melodic, we got a nice mixture for fans of any era of Sepultura. The mixture of styles may not resonate with fans that prefer a consistent sound, but I love the uniqueness of this album. Notable Songs: Isolation // Fear, Pain, Chaos, Suffering
  8. Sevendust: Blood & Stone – Sevendust is one of the most consistent bands out there, even if you consider some of their earlier albums more “NuMetal”, they still had similar enough vocal harmonies and song structure. This album, feels to be more in the vein of Seasons, where it’s dark and subdued in a lot of the topics and delivery, but it’s hauntingly driving and beautiful. This is one of those albums that almost feels like it encapsulates the year it came out, since there’s a bit of frustration, sadness, desperation and a few moments of hope, but the darker tone seems to hang. Plus their cover at the end of Soundgarden’s The Day I Tried To Live is very well done and a fitting way to honor a friend and the song itself. A fantastically solid foray for a band with over 20 years of experience, if anything drags it down a touch, it’s the fact the subdued tones don’t lend for anything to really stick out. Whereas it’s an easy listen, great craftsmanship, it also feels like one of the albums that won’t be placed in many constant rotations. Notable Songs: What You’ve Become // The Day I Tried To Live
  9. Body Count: Carnivore – Ice Tea’s interesting heavy metal band, that hasn’t always been received well. Personally, there weren’t many Body Count songs that I enjoyed or considered good, until I stumbled on to this album. Everything (except the Ace of Spades cover) is great sonically, lyrically and came down at a great point in time with much of what happened in 2020. This checked so many boxes, it was a gem of early 2020. Notable Songs: Bum-Rush // When I’m Gone
  10. Shadowkiller: Dark Awakening – As has been a large similarity in this list, anything derived from the NWOBHM style is going to ring pretty highly with me. The difference with this, as opposed to the top 2, is that this band lacks a little something. Now that’s not to take away from the fact it’s a solid album musically, it just really comes off more like W.A.S.P. or some of the less interesting eras of Iced Earth. Imagery is abound in this album, the lyrics depict some nice high fantasy, but the lead vocals do really leave something to be desired, so that’s my distinction on why there’s so much space between this and similar genre releases. Still a damn good album, especially for only being 8 songs, just when you don’t have the Michael Kiske/Bruce Dickinson/Geoff Tate/Tobias Sammet style of singer, it really loses a bit of the punch. Notable Songs: Jericho Hill // The Fires of Olympus


Top 5 TV Shows:

  1. Queen’s Gambit (Netflix) – Who would’ve figured a coming of age story set around orphans, chess and the 1960s, would’ve been so captivating? Anya Taylor-Joy was a great main character, she was captivating be it because of her aesthetics or just the way everything she did felt very realistic. From struggles with drugs and liquor, coming to terms with what life threw her and occasional hurdles that she showed moments of weakness and not wanting to rise to the level necessary; it all just makes her very relatable and charming, even when she’s objectively being an ass. It also portrays chess as a device for the larger topics at hand during the time period. Beth Harmon’s story depicts a trailblazer for women’s equality in the 50s/60s and there are still relevant notes it hits even in 2020, without feeling heavy handed and just being written intelligently and a consistent tempo of entertainment.
  2. The Boys Season 2 (Prime) – A tonal departure from the first show on my list, this is a fantastic subversion of the Superhero genre. Season 2 started off a little slow since the series had to set the stage for getting everyone back together, but damn was it great after the Spice Girls got back together. You get more depth on what makes the characters tick, a terrible supe that actually is the most logical and sensible before learning why they come off like that, and meeting the past head on to move into new territory helps to define this season. Fans of the first season, shouldn’t have any complaints about this season beyond the slower start. Great stuff, with a lot of question marks for Season 3.
  3. Cobra Kai Season 2 (Netflix) – Season 2 and Season 1 did a wonderful job at basically inverting the first and third Karate Kid movies for fans of the 80s classics (yes calling Karate Kid 3 a classic is really just a classification because of affiliation, trust me, I know it ain’t great). Running with the Barney Stinson logic of Johnny Lawrence being the true Karate Kid, it’s pretty interesting to watch his growth. His rivalry with Danny, the fact he still has this weird hope/father figure impression for Kreese, his reunion with the old Cobra Kai gang and dealing with human issues. This is just relatable on the level of watching people try to better themselves, but the past, or something gets in the way of truly being able to get over the hump. Season 3 starts January 1st, so I really appreciate the quick turn around on moving things forward.
  4. The Mandalorian Season 2 (Disney+) – With the only clunker of an episode (to me) being episode 2, the season did roll along fairly strongly. Deepening the relationship between Grogu and Din, showing the risks he’s willing to take and lengths he’s willing to go to, was fantastic growth. With the addition of extended universe or animated universe characters and story arcs, it really played to die hard Star Wars fans and seemed to resonate well in the community because it acknowledged so many different aspects of the fandom. Personally, I don’t enjoy the inclusion of Luke Skywalker at the end, because it shrinks the feeling of the universe again (a common complaint about the new trilogy) and I would’ve appreciated the TV universe to keep more distance between the cinematic universe. I do understand the magnitude of how well it was done, and how it hit certain fans, and of course the exchange at the end with Din and Grogu hit people deeply. It was all well done, and a majorly enjoyable season, personal nitpicks aside, none of my gripes are enough to really drop my enjoyment of what went on.
  5. Tacoma FD (TruTV) – The Broken Lizard (Super Troopers, Beerfest, etc…) squad decides to take their stab at episodic television. This time, they’re fire fighters, and not highway patrol! Now part of the beauty beyond the Broken Lizard style of humor, is the fact that only Kevin Heffernan and Steve Lemme are part of the main cast. So that means the rest of the cast is relatively unknown talent, that adds the same level of irreverence and offbeat comedy that we’ve grown to love. Also with the addition of Hassie Harrison, the writing gets slightly more progressive than what people would expect from the sophomoric stylings. Playing Heffernan’s daughter, she has to quickly get the group comfortable with having a woman involved, and then her desire to be treated as equal helps us see her slowly acclimate and her father slowly stop protecting her and accepting her as one of the gang. So there’s growth underneath the dick jokes (hmm, I guess that’s a dick joke in a way too). Either way, it’s funny if you like the style, and adds a few more layers to the character development than people might expect from Broken Lizard.


Top 5 Wrestlers:

  1. Go Shiozaki – If anyone read my articles, or the Top Matches, then we should all know NOAH has been a complete godsend this year, much in thanks to this man. Shiozaki has been compelling, and it’s hilarious to think that the awful year probably saved Shiozaki’s career. Go has been considered a Fallen Ace, since be it GHC or Triple Crown, none of his title runs have resulted in much momentum, hype or perceived success. It was usually during a weird point in time, so this almost felt like more of the snake bitten same, but Shiozaki pulled every rabbit out of his hat this year. Increasing quality of matches, different styles of matches to appeal to many fans, great struggles, great stories, all while maintaining himself and his humble giggling personality. Acknowledged by Tokyo Sports, Meltzer, random IWC members and even Abema (Japanese TV website), this has been his year beyond the shadow of a doubt.
  2. Drew McIntyre – The former Chosen One, left and came back, to the applause and hype of many fans. It took him a while to find his moment, but as soon as we saw his interactions with Brock Lesnar, we knew it was bound to happen. McIntyre had great physical altercations, verbal back and forths coupled with solid matches while being thankful to the crowd at home. People clamored for McIntyre to be champion when he came back up from NXT, and everyone was given that gift two times. Having the champion versus champion match with Roman at Survivor Series was a nice foreshadowing for what WWE could be for the next few years. It passes the eye test, the matches are good, the promos are fairly entertaining, Drew just proves to himself and everyone that the Chosen One moniker was deserved, if not maybe a little premature.
  3. Randy Orton – Many have heralded 2020 as Randy Orton’s best work of his career. Being integral in Edge’s return, helping to really solidify Drew McIntyre as a legitimate champion, and tying older story arcs together with great promos with the likes of Ric Flair or just moments in matches. Also he’s stepped up the Twitter game a bit to be a highlight aspects of himself that still fall well into the Randy Orton motif. Open bashing (which is just veiled support) of Talk-N-Shop A Mania, wholesome if not a little stiff moments with the family, and running down certain talent all in line with his character and probably real life views. Short 14th title reign or not, this wasn’t about the titles Orton put together, it was about the mark he left on the 2020 wrestling world.
  4. Tetsuya Naito – Much like 2020 itself, this was a weird year, so it was perfect that it was mostly Naito’s year in New Japan. Fulfilling his childhood dream of winning the belt in the Tokyo Dome and then winning it back at Jingu Baseball Stadium, where we went to watch the last New Japan show (1999) and of course Baseball, since he’s a big fan of the sport. Soured a bit with the 4 months off and the whole EVIL situation, but it’s hard to downplay the overall year he’s had win/loss wise and kayfabe.
  5. Kenny Omega – Even if I’m not a fan of AEW’s product, at the moment it’s impossible to ignore what Kenny Omega did, most notably towards the end of the year. Staying toward the top of AEW before the big angle when he won the belt, bringing more attention to Impact since the Broken Universe, adding attention to TripleMania and trying to help a child cope with a lot of things going on in their life. I don’t need to like it, or him, to acknowledge he’s been an impact player. Omega might be able to dovetail this momentum in 2021, so it could be great moments and proving his fans are willing to consume his product wherever he may roam.

Here we go! The arbitrary “Top X” list of writers with opinions! Like last year, I’m gonna do the Top 30, so here we go!

Top 30 Matches:

  1. Go Shiozaki vs Takashi Sugiura: NOAH Final Chronicle 2020
  2. Go Shiozaki vs Katsuhiko Nakajima: NOAH the Chronicle vol 4
  3. Go Shiozaki vs Kenoh: NOAH the Chronicle Vol 3
  4. Go Shiozaki vs Kaito Kiyomiya: NOAH New Sunrise
  5. SHO vs Shingo Takagi: NJPW Dominion
  6. Zeus vs Kento Miyahara: Champion Carnival Finals
  7. Walter vs Ilja Dragunov: NXT UK 10/29
  8. Tetsuya Naito vs Kazuchika Okada: WK 14
  9. Dick Togo vs Daisuke Harada: NOAH Global Junior League Finals
  10. Susumu Yokosuka vs Hikaru Sato: AJPW Broadcast #3
  11. Randy Orton vs Edge: Backlash 2020
  12. Go Shiozaki vs Naomichi Marufuji: NOAH Departure
  13. Takashi Suigiura vs Naomichi Marufuji: N-1 Victory Day 3
  14. Hiromu Takahashi vs Ryu Lee: NJPW New Beginning Osaka
  15. Tomohiro Ishii vs Shingo Takagi: New Japan Road
  16. Will Ospreay vs Zack Sabre Jr: NJPW New Beginning 2.2
  17. Tyler Bate vs Jordan Devlin: NXT UK Blackpool II
  18. Io Shirai vs Charlotte Flair vs Rhea Ripley: NXT In Your House
  19. Eddie Edwards vs Eric Young: Victory Road
  20. ASUKA vs Arisa Nakajima: Deliver to You 6.14.20
  21. Young Bucks vs Hangman Page & Kenny Omega: AEW Revolution
  22. Katsuhiko Nakajima vs Shotaro Ashino: Wrestle-1 2/12/20
  23. Masato Tanaka vs Tetsuya Endo: DDT Peter Pan Day 2
  24. Shotaro Ashino vs Suwama: AJPW Broadcast # 6
  25. AJ Styles vs Daniel Bryan: SmackDown 6.12.20
  26. Sasha Banks vs Bayley: Hell in a Cell
  27. Cody Rhodes vs Darby Allin: AEW Full Gear
  28. Tessa Blanchard vs Sami Callihan: Impact Hard to Kill
  29. Takumi Iroha vs Mayu Iwatani: Stardom Way to Major League 2020
  30. BJW Crisis Survivor Vol. 2: 567 Fluorescent Light Tubes Death Match: Abdullah Kobayashi vs Yuki Ishikawa vs Toshiyuki Sakuda


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Bandwagon Nerds

Bandwagon Nerds #202: Bridger Over Troubled Water

Grand Admiral Thrawn and Ezra Bridger finally made their live-action debuts and BWN breaks it all down for you.



Bandwagon Nerds Mario
Bandwagon Nerds #202: Bridger Over Troubled Water

The Nerds return to break down one of the biggest events in recent Star Wars history. Ahsoka, Episode 6, featured the long-awaited live action debuts of Grand Admiral Thrawn and Ezra Bridger. The emergence of these two iconic characters represents a seismic shift in the Star Wars Universe and sets the stage for a massive final 2 Episodes of Ahsoka…as well as for what is coming down the pike. A visit to the Trailer Park looks at the latest from A24, plus new trailers for Hunger Games, Percy Jackson, and BWN’s favorite band of misfits as we got our first look at the final episodes of Doom Patrol. All that plus the unexpected end of the Writer’s Strike? For the first time in months, there is reason to be optimistic and we have all the details for you here on Bandwagon Nerds.

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Join Patrick O’Dowd, David Ungar, PC Tunney and Rey Cash as they keep everyone up on all things nerd, and maybe add some new nerds along the way. It’s the Bandwagon Nerds Podcast!

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Launched in 2017, the Chairshot Radio Network presents you with the best in sports, entertainment, and sports entertainment. Wrestling and wrestling crossover podcasts + the most interesting content + the most engaging hosts = the most entertaining podcasts you’ll find!

Featuring shows such as POD is WAR (sports, entertainment & sports entertainment) Bandwagon Nerds (entertainment & popular culture), The DWI Podcast (Drunk Wrestling Intellect), The Greg DeMarco Show (wrestling), The #Miranda Show (wrestling and entertainment), Hockey Talk (sports), Patrick O’Dowd’s 5×5 (pop culture), The Outsider’s Edge (wrestling), Down The Wire (Sports), Talk The Keki (Anime), The Mindless Wrestling Podcast, Attitude Of Aggression/The Big Four (wrestling), and more!

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Mitchell’s Hyrule Puro-Resu Results & Report! (9/23/23)

Race towards fate!



The Legend of Zelda: The Ring of Destiny, Chapter 47

To guarantee spots in the Hyrule Warriors match at Clash of Fates, eight up and coming names make their HPW debuts! Who will be this year’s Dark Horses?


  • Blaino VS The Grim Creeper; Creeper wins and advances to the Hyrule Warriors match.
  • Avalaunch VS Thunderbird; Thunderbird wins and advances to the Hyrule Warriors match.
  • Freezlord VS CRAGMA; Freezlord wins and advances to the Hyrule Warriors match.
  • Yunobo VS Dinalfos; Double Count Out Draw, both advance to the Hyrule Warriors match.


HPW and HXS TV set the scene!

As the year continues into the Fall, new stars shall rise! Eight Dark Horses run the race, but only four are going to advance to Clash of Fates. Place your bets and hope you’re right! Who will be celebrating victories tonight? HPW Dark Horse Stampede on Irch Plain starts now!


Blaino VS The Grim Creeper!

Float like a butterfly, sing like a bee, this boxer looks to get a 1-2-3. But instead of three cheers, will there be a funeral march?

The bell rings and Blaino puts up his dukes. Blaino and Creeper circle, Blaino throws some testing jabs, but Creeper keeps his distance. They continue to circle, fans rally up, and Blaino fires off a flurry! Creeper guards and backs up to a corner, and the ref has Blaino back off. Blaino eggs Creeper on, Creeper gets out of the corner, and the two reset. Fans rally again as they circle. Blaino throws more hands but Creeper stays back. Creeper ends up on the ropes, but he ducks a haymaker to get a leg! Roll-up, TWO! Creeper stays low, goes for another leg, but Blaino throws down some punches! Creeper trips Blaino and has a toehold!

Blaino endures, throws down some hammering hands, but Creeper pulls on the foot. Blaino scrambles and gets the ROPEBREAK. The ref counts, Creeper lets off at 4 and Blaino gets to his feet in a huff. Fans rally as the two reset again, and Creeper is staying low. Creeper wants after the leg again but Blaino is wary. Creeper shoots in again, Blaino throws some quick hands and he ROCKS Creeper! Blaino fires off fast hands and he has Creeper stumbling to ropes! The ref has Blaino back off and Creeper bails out of the ring. Blaino waits while the ref starts the ring count. Creeper steadies himself and takes his time returning.

The count reaches 5 of 10 while Creeper paces. Blaino eggs Creeper on, Creeper goes around the corner, and then slides in at 7. Blaino storms up but Creeper slips right back out! Creeper then trips Blaino and drags him out of the ring! Creeper shoves Blaino into the railing, then knees him low! The ref reprimands but fans fire up as Creeper brings Blaino around and throws him into more railing! The ref starts another ring count as Creeper stomps Blaino against the railing. Creeper leaves Blaino behind at 4 of 10 and slides into the ring. Creeper soaks up the cheers and jeers while Blaino drags himself up with the railing.

Blaino staggers over at 6 of 10, leans against the apron, and rolls in at 8. Creeper is right on him with stomps! The ref counts, Creeper drags Blaino up and whips him to ropes. Creeper then scoops Blaino, but Blaino slips free to ROCK him with another right! Fans fire up while both men stagger. Blaino storms up but Creeper THROAT CHOPS! Fans boo while Blaino sputters, and Creeper rolls him up again! TWO, and Blaino flounders to a corner. Creeper storms up to stomp a mudhole into him. The ref counts, Creeper lets off, but then he basement dropkicks Blaino in the corner! Creeper drags Blaino out to a cover, TWO!

Fans rally up, “Let’s Go, Blaino!” as he crawls. Creeper drags Blaino up, CLUBS him to ropes, then ROCKS him with a right of his own. Creeper whips Blaino, only to reel him into a COBRA TWIST! Fans rally as Blaino endures! Creeper tells the ref to ask Blaino if he quits, the ref does ask and Blaino shakes his head. Creeper reaches out to hold ropes for more leverage! Fans boo, but Creeper lets go before the ref sees. Creeper digs his elbow into Blaino’s ribs, the ref asks Blaino again but again Blaino shakes his head. Creeper reaches out again, for more leverage with the ropes! The fans boo, and the ref almost catches Creeper!

The ref suspects something and talks with Creeper. Creeper defends his innocence, but then Blaino powers up to hip toss free! Fans fire up while Blaino staggers back. Creeper gets to his feet, Blaino JABS! And JABS! A one-two, then another one two! Blaino fires off body shots and fans fire up as he backs Creeper down! Blaino fires up and reels back, but Creeper STOMPS Blaino’s foot! Blaino clutches that leg and Creeper shoots around to waistlock, for a DANGEROUS SAIDO! Creeper stalks Blaino while fans are torn. Blaino staggers up, into a REAR NAKED CHOKE! Creeper drops back to have body scissors! Blaino fails, but he’s caught! Blaino taps, Creeper wins!

Winner: The Grim Creeper, by submission (advances to Clash of Fates)

The #CreeperSleeper puts away the punchy Blaino, but he isn’t letting go! The ref tells him to let off, Creeper lets off about five seconds after that. Fans boo as Creeper heads up the ramp, soaking it all in as he goes. Wait, who’s that on stage now? Ted Beedle Ossi? What’s he doing here? Creeper wonders, too, and then Beedle holds out an UnderWorld Order shirt! Fans are torn again, and Creeper accepts! Creeper is now UWO! Beedle raises Creeper’s hand in victory, and the two head out. Will the UWO take over HPW through the Clash of Fates?


Avalaunch VS Thunderbird!

Big, blocky and bulky, #Dekudon promised to “crush, smash, mash, bash and otherwise break whoever” he is up against! Will he start doing just that here tonight? Or will El Pájaro Enmascarado, The Masked Bird, fly high overhead?

The bell rings and the two circle. They tie up, Thunderbird waistlocks but Avalaunch wrenches to an ELBOW BREAKER. Thunderbird rolls and gets away and fans rally up. The two tie up again, Avalaunch wrenches the arm but Thunderbird headlocks to a takeover. Avalaunch headscissors but Thunderbird kips free and the two stand off. Fans rally as the two circle again. They feel things out, tie up, and Avalaunch is after the arm again. Avalaunch wrenches to clamp onto the shoulder, steps over, and hooks Thunderbird down with a leg. Thunderburd endures, fights around, kips up, but Avalunch wrangles Thunderbird down.

Thunderbird rolls, bridges, breaks free but Avalunch deflects the dropkick! Avalaunch headlocks, Thunderbird powers up but can’t power out as Avalaunch holds tight. Thunderbird powers up again, cartwheels free, and has a cravat! Avalaunch powers up but now he can’t power out as Thunderbird holds tight. Thunderbird grind Avalaunch down but Avalaunch fights up, pulls Thunderbird’s beak, then scoops to SLAM him! Cover, TWO! Thunderbird bridges to snapmare to a cover, TWO! Thunderbird keeps the cravat, Avalaunch powers up but Thunderbird flying mares! Cover, TWO! Avalaunch digs his knee brace into Thunderbird’s face!

The ref reprimands but Avalaunch gets up to whips and CLOBBER Thunderbird! Cover, TWO! Avalaunch pushes Thunderbird down to another cover, TWO! Avalaunch stomps Thunderbird in the corner and digs his boot in. The ref counts, Avalaunch lets off and soaks up the heat from fans. Avalaunch stands Thunderbird up to smother him with forearms. The ref reprimands, the fans boo, but Avalaunch lets off with a BIG back elbow! Avalaunch pushes Thunderbird down and clamps his hands on Thunderbird’s head for a neck wrench! Avalaunch pulls on the mask for more leverage but the ref reprimands.

Avalaunch pushes Thunderbird down and jumps to drop a BIG elbow! Cover, TWO! Avalaunch is annoyed, and he drags Thunderbird up to whip him to a corner. Thunderbird goes up and up and FLYING ARM-DRAGS! Then he DROPKICKS Avalaunch! Avalaunch staggers up, Thunderbird runs up but Avalaunch throws Thunderbird up and over the ropes! Thunderbird lands on the apron, springboards back in, but Avalaunch catches him! Avalaunch carries Thunderbird around, before a FALL AWAY SLAM! Putting the launch in his name right there! Thunderbird tumbles to ropes and Avalaunch storms over to him.

Avalaunch stands on Thunderbird’s face at the ropes and fans boo. The ref reprimands and counts, but then Thunderbird twists Avalaunch’s foot! Avalaunch hobbles and falls back as Thunderbird stands up! Thunderbird twists the toehold but Avalaunch boots him away with his free leg! Thunderbird rebounds but into a kitchen sink knee! Avalaunch brings Thunderbird around with double underhooks, and BUTTERFLY SUPLEXES! Cover, TWO! Thunderbird hangs in there but Avalaunch clamps on with a chinlock. Avalaunch grinds Thunderbird down but fans rally up. Thunderbird fights up, but Avalaunch drags him back down!

Thunderbird endures, kicks around, and even slaps at Avalaunch. Avalaunch lets off the hold to SLAP Thunderbird! Avalaunch gets the legs, and he turns Thunderbird over for a SAND CRAB! Thunderbird endures, fans rally up, and Thunderbird powers up to roll through! Thunderbird sits up to get up and over and sunset flip! TWO, Thunderbird goes for legs but Avalaunch TOSSES him aside! Thunderbird lands on his feet, cartwheels past a boot, and he ENZIGURIS back! Avalaunch staggers up, into a FLYING KICK! Avalaunch tumbles out of the ring, and something seems familiar about that kick.

Thunderbird sees Avalaunch stagger up at the ramp, and he builds speed to DIVE! Direct hit and fans fire up again! Thunderbird hurries to put Avalaunch in the ring, and he climbs up the corner! SUPREME FLOW! Cover, TWO!! Avalaunch survives but Thunderbird takes aim. Thunderbird runs in, but Avalaunch gets around him! GERMAN SUPLEX! But Thunderbird lands on his feet! FLYING KICK!! Cover, Thunderbird wins!

Winner: Thunderbird, by pinfall (advances to Clash of Fates)

So much for crushing, smashing and bashing! Thunderbird strikes Avalaunch down, will he be able to do the same to 32 others in the Hyrule Warriors match?


Freezlord VS CRAGMA!

Hot and cold, fire and ice, it is a battle as old as time, and now it happens here in the ring! Will the cold-blooded Freezlord bring an early Winter? Or will the Lava Lord start a second Summer sizzle?

The bell rings and fans rally up as the two stare down. They snarl, and Cragma storms up to take a big swing! Freezlord blocks, body shots, but Cragma ducks the heel kick and jumps the leg sweep! They stand off, Cragma SPITS at Freezlord! Freezlord avoids the hot saliva and then SOBATS Cragma low! Fans rally up as Freezlord BOOTS then arm-drags Cragma! Cragma staggers up into a THRUST KICK! Freezlord whips Cragma to then back drop him away! Fans fire up with Freezlord as he drags Cragma up, but Cragma ROCKS Freezlord! Cragma stalks Freezlord to ropes and ROCKS him with a haymaker!

Cragma kicks Freezlord down, eggs him on, and then lines up a shot to ROCK him with another haymaker! Freezlord staggers but Cragma DECKS him with another right! Cragma soaks up the heat from the fans, and then he takes aim again. Cragma runs up but Freezlord sweeps the legs! Fans rally as Freezlord then HEEL KICKS Cragma down! Cover, TWO! Freezlord whips, Cragma ducks and slides out of the ring to soak up more heat. But Freezlord triangle jump DROPKICKS Cragma down! Fans cheer and Cragma staggers back up, into a PLANCHA! Freezlord drags Cragma up, calls his shot, and he suplexes Cragma high and hard to the floor!

Freezlord hurries to put Cragma in the ring, then he covers, TWO! Freezlord is frustrated but goes to the apron. Freezlord springboards, but Cragma gets under! Cragma rebounds to POUNCE Freezlord out of the ring! Fans rally up for Freezlord while he goes to railings and drags himself up. Cragma storms out after Freezlord, eggs him on, and then SMACKS him off the railing! Freezlord slumps over and Cragma refreshes the ring count. Cragma drags Freezlord up, fireman’s carries, and he goes up the steel steps, so SNAKE EYES Freezlord off the apron! Cragma then goes up the corner, just to soak up more heat.

Cragma then hops down to get Freezlord into the ring, and he slingshots in to LARIAT! Cover, TWO! Cragma argues the count with the ref but the ref defends it was fair. Cragma goes to ropes, and he SPRINGBOARD LEG DROPS but FLOPS as Freezlord moves! Cragma clutches his tailbone as he staggers up. Freezlord PALM STRIKES! And again! Freezlord whips, but Cragma steps over the back drop for a FAMOUSER! Cover, TWO! Freezlord is still in this and Cragma grows frustrated. Cragma eggs Freezlord on, kicks him around, and then drags him up. Freezlord UPPERCUTS! And BACKHANDS! But Cragma BOOTS him down!

Cragma whips, Freezlord reverses, but Cragma just steps over again! FAMOUS- NO, Freezlord powers out to a POWERBOMB! Fans fire up while both men are down! A standing count starts, both elementals stir, and they both stand at 5 of 10! LEG SWEEP from Freezlord! Freezlord then drags Cragma up to whip, follow, and SOMERSAULT UPPERCUT! Fans rally as Freezlord whips Cragma, scoops him and tilt-o-whirl SLAMS him! Fans fire up as Freezlord runs in, leap frogs, and CALF KICKS! Cover, TWO! Freezlord whips again and follows, but Cragma stops himself to ROUNDHOUSE Freezlord down!

Fans fire up again as both men are on the mat! A standing count starts again, Cragma crawls over to cover, TWO!! Freezlord almost didn’t kick out of that, but Cragma is roaring! Cragma goes up the corner, fans are torn as he stands, but Freezlord hits the ropes to trip him up! Cragma lands on his volcano! Freezlord hurries after Cragma, ELBOWS him, then climbs up to bring him up. SUPERPLEX! Cover, TWO! Cragma is still in this but Freezlord hurries up top! Cragma stands, Freezlord FLYING- NO, NORTHERN LIGHTS COUNTER! Bridging cover, TWO!! Cragma is beside himself, but he hurries to get Freezlord up. JAWBREAKER from Freezlord!

Freezlord hurries up top again, he wants to hit the mark! But Cragma dodges the flying lariat again! But Freezlord rolls through, goes up the other corner, to CROSSBODY! Cover, TWO! Cragma gets out of that one but Freezlord takes aim! But Cragma uses the ref as a shield! Fans boo as Freezlord is cooled off there. Freezlord moves the ref aside, and Cragma mule kicks to then SUPERKICK! Cover, TWO!! Freezlord survives again and fans rally up again! Cragma drags Freezlord up, whips him hard into a corner, and then takes aim. Cragma runs in, but Freezlord dodges and the boot gets caught up in the ropes!

Cragma hobbles out of the corner, into a BACKFLIP KICK!! Cover, Freezlord wins!

Winner: Freezlord, by pinfall (advances to Clash of Fates)

The ice in his veins did not melt, and now Freezlord is headed to Clash of Fates! Winter is coming, will 32 other Hyrule Warriors end up out in the cold?


Yunobo VS Dinalfos!

A third generation Goron wrestler takes on a physical specimen who set a new standard at the Training Center. This is truly a big way to end the Stampede, who will be the final Dark Horse heading to the Coliseum?

Yunobo is a bit shy as he makes his entrance, and also slow rolls into the ring. Dinalfos gets in Yunobo’s face, and Yunobo gulps before putting on a tough face. The ref has them back off, the bell rings, and fans rally up as Yunobo and Dinalfos approach again. Dinalfos UPPERCUTS Yunobo right down! Fans rally for Yunobo but Dinalfos drags him up to put into a corner. Dinalfos CLUBS Yunobo again and again and again, then fires off forearms and body shots and fast hands! The ref counts, Dinalfos lets off and brings Yunobo out to short arm LARIAT! Fans boo Dinalfos as he looms over Yunobo.

Dinalfos sits Yunobo up and wraps him up in a seated abdominal stretch! Yunobo endures, fights as the fans rally, and Yunobo throws body shots in return! Yunobo is free, he runs, and rolls Dinalfos up, TWO! Dinalfos CLOBBERS Yunobo! Dinalfos roars and soaks up the heat before he drags Yunobo up, whips him to a corner, and then SPLASHES! Yunobo falls over and Dinalfos soaks up more heat. Dinalfos drags Yunobo up to whip to ropes, but Yunobo manages a sunset flip! But Dinalfos stands up, breaks free, and hits a LEG DROP! Cover, TWO! Dinalfos snarls and CHOKES Yunobo!

The ref reprimands and counts, Dinalfos lets off, then covers again, TWO! Dinalfos tries another cover, TWO! Dinalfos snarls again as he brings Yunobo up. Dinalfos suplexes, but Yunobo fights it with flailing kicks! Dinalfos tries again, but again Yunobo fights it. Yunobo then suplexes Dinalfos up and over! Cover, TWO! Fans rally as Yunobo runs, to LARIAT! Yunobo starts rallying with big clotheslines! Yunobo is starting to fire up, and he fires haymakers on Dinalfos! Dinalfos knees low! Dinalfos runs, but Yunobo ducks the clothesline to hit a BIG back suplex! Cover, TWO! Fans rally while Dinalfos goes to a corner.

Yunobo gets up and he looks around, wondering what to do. He signals with his hands for some rolling and fans fire up! Yunobo runs in, CANNONBALL but Dinalfos moves! Yunobo only hits buckles, and Rusl jokes that the ring might’ve shifted towards that direction. Dinalfos drags Yunobo out of the ring, and RAMS him into railing! Those also shift from the impact! Dinalfos CLUBS away on Yunobo’s back while the ref starts the ring count. Dinalfos brings Yunobo back up and whips him hard into more railing! Those railings definitely move, and Dinalfos leaves Yunobo behind for the count to take care of!

Fans rally for Yunobo as the count climbs to 5 of 10! Yunobo drags himself up with the railing to stand at 7, hobbles over at 8, and he rolls in at 9! Only for Dinalfos to stomp him right at the ropes! Fans boo as Dinalfos CHOKES Yunobo on the ropes, but he lets off as the ref counts. Dinalfos mocks Yunobo, “All that size and you can’t do anything with it! Hope your family isn’t watching!” Fans boo and Dinalfos runs to SPLASH! Cover, TWO!! Yunobo survives, and he looks upset! Fans rally for Yunobo but Dinalfos stomps Yunobo. Dinalfos drags Yunobo to a corner, goes up, and FALLING SPLASHES! Cover, ONE!?!

Fans are going nuts and Dinalfos is shocked! Dinalfos CLUBS Yunobo, grabs a leg, and SMASHES the knee! Dinalfos puts on a HALF CRAB! Yunobo endures, fans rally as he crawls and reaches out, ROPEBREAK! Dinalfos holds until the ref counts 4, then he drags Yunobo up. Dinalfos scoops Yunobo! That’s his combine record setting strength! But Yunobo slips free and he scoops Dinalfos back! Yunobo SLAMS Dinalfos! Fans fire up and Yunobo is feeling it now! Yunobo stalks Dinalfos to a corner, but Dinalfos throws haymakers! Dinalfos backs Yunobo down, whips, but Yunobo reverses, only for Dinalfos to KNEE SMASH! And then he CLOBBERS Yunobo!

Fans boo as Dinalfos talks a bunch of trash on Yunobo’s family! Dinalfos then eggs Yunobo on, dares him to stand, and Yunobo does. Dinalfos kicks low, and he manages to suplex Yunobo up and over! Dinalfos roars, runs, and drops a JUMPING ELBOW! Cover, TWO! Yunobo is still in this, but Dinalfos is furious! Dinalfos stands Yunobo up, ROCKS him to a corner, then stomps a mudhole in! The ref counts, Dinalfos lets off, only to run in and stomp Yunobo more! Dinalfos storms around, fans are booing as hard as they can, but Dinalfos runs and RAMS into Yunobo! Dinalfos stands Yunobo up, RAMS into him again, and repeat!

The ref counts again, Dinalfos stops at 4, and he whips Yunobo corner to corner! But Yunobo bounces off buckles to NECKBREAKER DROP! Yunobo crawls to a cover, TWO! Both men rise up, and they start throwing hands! Fans rally behind Yunobo, he whips, but Dinalfos whips to kick low! Dinalfos underhooks, but Yunobo back drops him up and out of the ring! Fans fire up as Yunobo goes out to stomp on Dinalfos! Yunobo’s rage is boiling and fans are loving it! Yunobo goes back for Dinalfos, but Dinalfos YANKS him into steel steps! Fans fire up but the ring count is climbing as Dinalfos drags Yunobo back up.

Dinalfos whips Yunobo, but Yunobo reverses! Dinalfos goes crashing into railing! That definitely moved things around! Fans are loving this as Yunobo storms up, but we’re past 5 of 10! Yunobo’s rage is getting the better of him as he drags Dinalfos up. Yunobo whips but Dinalfos reverses, and Yunobo goes crashing into steel steps! The steps go tumbling away! Fans rally up as hard they can and Yunobo staggers up to his feet. And then Dinalfos SPEARS him through railing!! Fans lose their minds and even commentary is completely stunned by it! But the ring count is still climbing! The ref hits TEN, it’s a DOUBLE COUNT OUT!!

Double Count Out Draw

Fans are going nuts again, and some are upset! What does a draw mean for the Dark Horse Stampede? Speaking of upset, Dinalfos and Yunobo get up and keep throwing hands! Did they not hear the bell? They go around commentary and Dinalfos RAMS Yunobo into the apron! Yunobo CLUBS and hammers Dinalfos, security rushes out to stop this! Wait, here comes HPW COO, Humpback Hook Halibut! Hook’s very involved in the HPW Training Center which many of these Dark Horses pass through. Hook talks with the ref and the ring announcer. And as the announcer tells us, Hook has decided this draw means BOTH men advance to Clash of Fates!!

Fans cheer again and this news helps calm Dinalfos and Yunobo down. So now we have five Dark Horses entering the Hyrule Warriors match despite the field only being eight. Then will Dinalfos and Yunobo be able to settle this fight within the massive battle royal? Will any of the Dark Horses make it to the end?

My Thoughts:

I did my best to get this done a bit quickly, in anticipation of Clash of Fates being a bigger endeavor because of the Hyrule Warriors match, but also because my schedule’s rather busy and I wanted to make sure I didn’t wait until the last minute. It was a bit trickier to really give these matches what felt good to me, but at the same time, these “Dark Horses” are supposed to be newer/younger wrestlers, they aren’t at the top of the card, so none of these matches should be matching championship caliber stuff. Also full disclosure, I changed up my choice on the final match as I was putting it together because I felt it’d be a shame for one of them to lose.

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