|Hey, look, it's Veronica Ticklefeather and some chucklehead|
Photo Credit: Lee Spriggs
- In the opening contest, the Briscoes defeated Jimmy Jacobs and Steve Corino by nailing Jacobs with the Doomsday Device.
- Saturyne defeated Juan Francisco de Coronado with a sunset flip counter out of the fireman's carry.
- In an unannounced match under the House of Hardcore banner, Tommy Dreamer and Hale Collins defeated Vic Delicious and Ben Ortiz with a Collins flying elbow.
- Josh Alexander defeated Ethan Page with a tombstone piledriver.
- In the match of the day, Chiva Kid landed a double rotation moonsault on Rick Converse to give him and Arik Royal the win.
- In a match that also featured Rory Mondo, Matt Tremont pinned Latin Dragon with a power bomb.
- In a technical, almost World of Sport-style match, Colt Cabana reversed a Mike Quackenbush hold into a pin combination to win. Afterwards, Bill Apter presented Cabana with the "2013 Wrestling Ambassador" Award.
- The #KOA of Sugar Dunkerton and Aaron Epic defeated Eric Corvis and Chris Dickinson, laying out Dickinson with a lariat-assisted leg-trap Olympic Slam.
- 2 Cold Scorpio outlasted Shane Hollister, Jojo Bravo, and Oliver Grimsley in the first Rey de Voladores semifinal match, pinning Grimsley with the 450.
- In the Kaiju Big Battel match, Dr. Cube's minions defeated American Beetle and Neo Teppen with all his grotesque and grand creations on the outside of the ring.
- Drew Gulak defeated Francis O'Rourke via tapout on the Dragon sleeper with legscissors.
- ACH won the second Rey de Voladores semifinal over Lukas Sharp, Bolt Brady, and Surfer Mitch with the frogsplash on Mitch.
- The opening match of the evening card saw Reed Bentley and Tripp Cassidy defeating Heidi Lovelace and
Mat RussoDevin Bliss via Bentley's pop-up elbow on Lovelace.
- The SAT defeated Angel Ortiz and Mike Draztik via the double Spanish Fly on Ortiz.
- Christina von Eerie replaced Marti Belle in the Women's Superstars Uncensored match, but she couldn't defeat Ezavel Suena, who won with the sunset flip. Afterwards, von Eerie choked out Suena with her punk rock belt.
- Robert Anthony (partner, Thunderkitty) pinned Jay Bradley (partner, Darcy Dixon) in the mixed tag match from Misogyny Pro.
- In the Chikara atomicos match, 3.0 and the Colony defeated FIST and Los Ice Creams, as 3.0 hit the Sweet Taste of Professionalism on Icarus.
- Tony Nese and Apollyon defeated John Silver and Alex Reynolds. Apollyon caused a magnitude 3.0 earthquake in hitting Reynolds with the Superfly Splash to finish the match.
- AR Fox finished off Shane Strickland with the Lo Mein Pain.
- The Estonian Thunder Frog and Latvian Proud Oak came the closest anyone did since the Tag Gauntlet of defeating the Devastation Corporation, but the Oak fell victim to their Death Blow powerbomb/body splash combo.
- John McChesney successfully defended his International Wrestling Cartel Championship against Logan Shulo using a belt shot.
- Shane Helms and Matty DeNero (power glove and all) defeated Kobold and Ophidian with dueling chokeslams.
- 2 Cold Scorpio defeated ACH in the Rey de Voladores final with an inverted 450 splash.
- $10 to park? Getthefuckouttahere. (Although I found out later all the talent had to pay to park too. Boo, National Guard Armory. Boo.)
- The above picture satisfies one-third of my "Pretty Ladies of Chikara" mark photo quotient. Just Saturyne and Sara del Rey remain (that final one might prove problematic though...)
- The Briscoes and SCUM opened the show? It was confusing at the time, but then I heard that Ring of Honor was doing television tapings on Baltimore, so it made sense. Circumstances were unfortunate given that they got less time than other matches that didn't need it, but it was still really fun.
- Mark Briscoe! REDNECK KUNG FU! Be still my beating heart.
- Saturyne totally had a height advantage over Juan Francisco de Coronado, which was probably the first time that ever happened in her career.
- Coronado got Saturyne in a headlock, strongmanned her, and yelled "HAPPY NATIONAL PRO WRESTLING DAY!" I like my bad guys to have panache.
- Things I wondered aloud: "If it's a disqualification for Coronado to remove Saturyne's mask, would it be the same if she took off his bowtie?"
- Coronado proclaimed he was thirsty, at which his manservant (let's ruminate and admire the fact that he has a manservant... A MANSERVANT!) tossed him a pony bottle of water.
- Hey, an unexpected match appears! And it's got Tommy Dreamer in it! Apparently, it was Ben Ortiz's first match, and Dreamer tried to get the crowd riled up by saying he was a MMA/judo fighter. Okay.
- There are heel gimmicks that make me want to boo, and there are shitty gimmicks that don't belong in a fun pro wrestling ring. Ethan Page's borderline abusive treatment of Seleyzia Sparx is the latter.
- I thought the match itself though was okay, if it was just a bunch of moves (cool moves, though) strung together.
- The CWF match felt sleepy until Chiva Kid came in to land a standing shooting star press to go with Arik Royal's leg drop combo.
- Trevor Lee was professional at stirring the shit on the apron. He did what he had to do to get himself and his company known to that crowd.
- Of course, Chiva did it up himself really well, moonsault-planchaing Converse on one side then doing the same to Lee on the other.
- DOUBLE ROTATION MOONSAULT!
- Rory Mondo tried ranaing Matt Tremont to the floor from the top, but he slipped, causing the crowd to roar into a "YOU FUCKED UP!" chant. Time to renew my objection to the chant altogether and emphatically state that I don't wanna be associated with people in a crowd who like to look for botches and happily celebrate them amongst themselves. Don't be that guy. Don't ever be that guy.
- Of course, when Mondo made up for it by suplexing Tremont to the floor, the same "YOU FUCKED UP" crowd went into a raucous "CZW! CZW!" chant. Wrestling fans have worse short term memory than goldfish sometimes.
- I will say though, that powerbomb to finish Latin Dragon by Tremont? WHOA.
- At this point, I think I should point out that Oleg the Usurper was at one of the tables near the entry way eating a whole chicken, sausage, and a COCONUT with his bare hands.
- I was very surprised to see Mike Quackenbush/Colt Cabana going on 7th out of 12 on the opening card. I thought for sure that'd be the main event.
- Quack and Cabana wrestled a whimsical yet technically fluid match, most exemplified with an exchange where they rolled around the campus trading pins. It devolved from a tight rolling exchange into lazy one counts, to which referee Bryce Remsburg exclaimed "YOU'RE NOT EVEN TRYING!"
- The Beyond Wrestling match featured all the wrestlers surrounding the ring as was their tradition. I caught Ophidian among the coterie around the ring, which took me aback since I never really associated him with that group.
- Really dug the #KOA's teamwork during this match too. This was the best I've seen Aaron Epic.
- Oliver Grimsley came out with balloons that he gave to kids in the crowd. One of the people in our group of fans (forget who) said he was a "hipster clown."
- Jojo Bravo shook referee Jon Barber's hand before the match, and Barber sold it like he just stuck his hand in a vise. Then the other competitors had "trouble" lifting Bravo. Later on in the match, 2 Cold Scorpio turned the trope on its head by sandbagging Bravo when he tried to slam him.
- Grimsley tried to float over a charging Shane Hollister the corner, but Hollister caught him and straight up murdered him with a quick superkick. That was such a bang-bang spot, and it looked clean too.
- Okay, the Page/Alexander match had violence against Sparx teased and enacted, which was a bit deflating, but it was warranted. Sparx interfered in the match. Both Scorpio and Grimsley teased attacking Scarlett (who was seconding Shane Hollister). Scarlett didn't really do anything to warrant it though. Kind of a disturbing trend forming here...
- Kaiju Big Battel... okay, I really didn't process what I saw, but it was an absurd spectacle.
- I will say though, if I had to be mentally scarred by the toucan-yeti thing, so do you.
- Drew Gulak and Francis O'Rourke had a really stiff but technically beautiful contest, something that has become Gulak's calling card.
- FULL ZIGGLER ALERT: O'Rourke had Gulak on the top and nailed him with a top rope half-nelson suplex. The fucked up thing though? Gulak went right to the attack after they both spent a bit on the canvas recovering instead of the other way around. The really fucked up thing? His mode of attack was the headbutt.
- The really, really, REALLY fucked up thing though? I'd find out later through superfan and cool dude Lee Spriggs, who went over to talk to Gulak, that he basically landed on his face on that bump and that all his bottom teeth were loose.
- Lukas Sharp, the long lost member of Icy Hot Stuntaz, at least showed some wrestling acumen, turning Surfer Mitch inside out with a lariat early on in the second Rey de Voladores semifinal.
- ACH looked like he got his bell rung pretty good on a flapjack attempt. Not to be outdone, Surfer Mitch, upon eliminating Bolt Brady, busted out a 630 senton that looked like it almost broke his neck. He went to the top again to do the move to ACH, and everyone in the crowd yelled at him to get down (even the ones not rooting for ACH).
- Intermission time! Mark Angelosetti challenged people to arm-wrestling, while Jervis Cottonbelly appeared to spread the word about Gentleman-ia. I stepped out with some folks for pizza, so apparently, I missed all of it. But the pizza was good.
- First match back for the evening card was the School of Roc graduates, and it included perhaps the most brutal-looking face-in-peril sequence ever where Heidi Lovelace got straight-up murdered for like five minutes. It got borderline uncomfortable at points.
- To her credit, she did give back when she could, including a nice step-up short rana.
- Of course, the match ended up with Lovelace eating a pop-up elbow that I'm not sure was all that worked. Afterwards, she rose to her feet to the goddamn loudest ovation of the night, while her partner,
Mat RussoDevin Bliss, got a "You were worthless!" chant. A deserved chant, by the by.
- I really wasn't too much into the Fighting Spirit tag match, which was a shame, because they did try their hardest. That being said, Angel Ortiz and Mike Draztik kinda looked like LMFAO a bit.
- That being said, the match went about five minutes too long.
- Marti Belle did not make it to the show (as I found out later due to transportation issues), so her replacement was Christina von Eerie. In all, it was a trade-up.
- I'll say this about Ezavel Suena. She tried hard, she really did. I thought she was even okay at the very least. However, and I hate to harp on stuff like image, but it's hard to take her seriously when she looks like she's about to go from the wrestling ring onto a porno set.
- Then again, if Suena wasn't as gussied up the way she was, I'm not sure von Eerie spitting at her feet and then in her face would've worked as well as it did, so there was that.
- I really don't wanna write a lot of words right now about the Resistance Pro match. I really don't, because there's a time and a place to get my thoughts on the matter in a cogent way without coming off reactionary or even worse, as damaging to the cause. That being said, if you were one of the people who was chanting for Jay Bradley to give Darcy Dixon a clothesline after the match was over, then you're bad and you should feel bad.
- Chikara atomico to cleanse the palate after that shit? YES!
- Icarus rocked a faux-hawk last night. It's like every time I see him at a new event, he has something else about himself that is loathsome and despicable, and I think I love him for it.
- Scott Parker grabbed one of the Colony's capes and wrapped it around Hijo del Ice Cream's head. Hijo not being able to move around the ring made sense. Jagged missing badly short on a cross body didn't until I realized it was probably one of those really insider "wink wink nudge nudge" references that they did for themselves.
- Shane Matthews working over Icarus' back. "THAT IS SO UGLY!"
- Ice Cream Jr. wrenched in a chinlock on Parker, and with every tightening of the hold, shouted "ME GUSTA RANDY ORTON!" I'm pretty certain that's the moment pro wrestling peaked and now we're in the falling action.
- Tony Nese totally looked like King Leonidas from the movie 300.
- Okay, so Apollyon was this big dude, like 350 pounds at least, and the first move he busted out was a flipping single leg dropkick. He also busted out a plancha (A PLANCHA) and finished the match with a goddamn Superfly Splash. Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Hosstober.
- And of course, Nese saw all that and busted out a modified Backlund short arm deadlift bomb, dropping Alex Reynolds in the corner like it wasn't no thang.
- AR Fox had Shane Strickland sitting in the corner and went into his normal sliding clothesline into a skin the cat dropkick. He then followed it up with a shooting star CAAAAAAANNONBALLLLLLLLL. That dude impresses me every time out.
- Really slick counter exchange on the outside. Fox was on the outside after Strickland headscissored him out of the ring. Strickland went for the plancha, but Fox slid back into the ring last minute. Fox went for his own, but Strickland greeted him with a gamengiri. I really dig exchanges like that. I am predictable.
- Your periodic notice that the Lo Mein Pain is probably the most badass finisher out there.
- According to Sidney Bakabella, Fritz von Erich has purchased the Wrestling Is Awesome territory. He's been dead for 15 years now, so RUN THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE IS HAPPENING AND THEY'RE ALL RICH! RICH I TELLS YA!
- The best thing I can say about the Latvian Proud Oak is that he wrestles like he is living tree. That's not a bad thing.
- Estonian Thunder Frog leaped from the top rope with his hammer and struck the canvas, knocking everyone, ESPECIALLY the ref, down onto the canvas. Can I just say I love these guys?
- Max Smashmaster tried picking up the Estonian Thunder Frog's hammer. He couldn't. Blaster McMassive tried to help him, and they still couldn't pick it up. They had to drag over the Frog to pick it up so they could make him smash the Oak with it, and even then, it failed. All the dorks around us chanting boring at the proceedings? They missed a shitload of storytelling and great psychology, so they can lick my balls the next time any of them talk about how wrestling they may have liked having "good psychology."
- The John McChesney/Logan Shulo match would've been better served to have happened earlier in the day, or on a two-day card instead of a doubleheader. I think here is where the fatigue of being in a show for that long set in. It was a perfectly decent match (again though, dampened by the idiots chanting for Shulo as "JEEESUS! JEEESUS!" because he had a beard and long hair and by them throwing homophobic comments at referee Derek Sabato), but it wasn't transcendent.
- That being said, Shulo chopping the ringpost? Man, the ricochet I heard on that wasn't natural, but it sounded brutal.
- Hurricane Helms came to the ring with two title belts, one of which was just a belt with his name on it. I laughed, because that's such a pro wrestling thing to do.
- Matty DeNero actually wore a NES Power Glove to the ring. I guess that was a good way to wake up a tired wrestling show.
- Ophidian started dancing, and Helms looked at him, turned to the crowd and yelled "I was in 3 Count!" Okay Hurricane, all is forgiven.
- Ophidian got Helms hypnotized, but before he could do anything about it, Amasis appeared in the entryway to distract him. I heard he's been back wrestling for other promotions. The wonders of modern medicine!
- Scorpio may have been funky, but ACH proclaimed that he was groovy. They proved this by dance-fighting to start the Rey de Voladores final.
- ACH's theme during the match was him trying to best the "old man" Scorpio, which set the table for impressive stuff like Scorpio's MASSIVELY explosive roundhouse kick.
- ACH put Scorpio in the Tree of Woe and then proceeded to a headstand on the top turnbuckle before flying in with a swinging dropkick. Dude always impresses, but you knew that.
- I was a bit befuddled by the finish, but I kinda saw it coming, given that they were playing up Scorpio as more of an underdog success story rather than an old warrior like Waltman was in 2011. ACH went a lot more rudo than I'm used to him being. He's a lot better as a hero, but he was deceptively good playing the black hat.
Match of the Night: Chiva Kid and Arik Royal vs. Rick Converse and Trevor Lee - You don't know how psyched I was to see that a match from a company and wrestlers I wasn't already familiar with stole the show. I was hoping to come out of the show remembering new faces for tearing the house down, and well, the quartet from CWF Mid-Atlantic gave me just that, especially Chiva Kid. The goat-masked competitor basically put on something of a virtuoso performance, bumping around the ring like a pinball, flying on his own volition, throwing kicks, and pulling off one of the sweetest double rotation moonsaults I've ever seen in my life. But even though Chiva was the breakout star of the entire day, he had a very good supporting cast to make this match the best of a day where at least three or four other matches could've taken that mantel.
The match started off a bit slowly with the rudos trying to feel out Royal. There were a few missteps, but they were easily forgivable. When Chiva got into the match, things started picking up. I felt like he got everyone going, especially Converse, who went into hoss mode. After Royal tagged back in, he looked a lot more comfortable as well. Lee may have been the under the radar star here, with his antics, trash talking, and crowd play.
After the show was over though, Bryce Remsburg said that Chiva was "made" after this match. Given that he won over fans like me and the trolls alike, I would be inclined to agree. That might be the case if he had just hit double moonsault, but he was excellent during the whole match. CWF Mid-Atlantic sent the right four wrestlers.
Overall Thoughts: The first National Pro Wrestling Day event was ambitious from start. Twenty-seven promotions putting on 23 matches over nearly 12 hours of wrestling and exposition was going to be daunting from the start. Some of the preliminary stuff signaled problems. The change in venue was troublesome enough (although there were some positive developments that came from it), and the fact that there was an unannounced parking charge made things even more annoying. There was also the drain factor. I, as a fan, felt mentally exhausted after the event, which meant that the organizers, wrestlers, and peripheral players had to have felt at least 10 times more so. Perhaps scaling back next year's foray (if there is even a foray next year) might be a better idea.
However, there are always going to be kinks with an idea as ambitious as this in the first run of play. For as many things that could have gone wrong, the event went off relatively smoothly. At least 22 of the matches were at least decent, and several of them were actually really good. One of the knocks I read going into the event was that it was a "bunch of midcarders," and while that was inaccurate in name, it proved to be a net positive. The unknown and lower-on-the-totem pole guys proved to be hungry and determined to win the crowd over in the name of wrestling.
The first and foremost goal of the event should have been to celebrate wrestling, this form of entertainment that we all love and enjoy. Whether it was through the matches or through the wrestlers milling about, hawking wares or otherwise, I think they did a very good job of that. I hope this comes back next year, because with some streamlining, National Pro Wrestling Day could be something special for years to come.