Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D and occasional guests write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Sunday, May 30, 2010

XCW-Midwest on Segunda Caida

XCW-Midwest is our favorite US promotion here on Segunda Caida, great old school southern wrestling with some of the best wrestlers in the world today. Here is a list of the shows we have reviewed which will be updated as more stuff gets written up.

2008

3/4

2009

2/3
3/3
3/4
5/5
6/9
8/4
10/17
11/21
12/12

2010

3/2

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Saturday, May 29, 2010

IWRG 11/5/09

Ruleta de la Muerte – Quarterfinals: Capitan Muerte & Miss Gaviota vs. Ultraman Jr. & Arlequin Negro

TKG: This a ruleta de muerte tag tourney where each tag team is made of one face teamed with one heel. The loosing team has to face each other in a singles match with the hair/mask on the line. This match was pretty long and not very good. It had a couple moments with Ultraman hitting a big tope, some stiff clotheslines, and Miss Gaviota reversing amateur riding sections with his eagerness to be rode.

PAS: The problem with these lucha tourneys normally is that all of the matches are too short, may not be an issue in IWRG as this actually goes way too long. Not as much cool Captain Muerte as one would hope.

Ruleta de la Muerte – Quarterfinals: Pendulo & Barba Roja vs. Chico Che & Gringo Loco

TKG: First quarterfinal was mostly worked with faces working faces and heels working heels. This one was done for he most part with the face on each team working the heel on the opposite team. This was all quick exchanges. Some really brief Che v Pendulo exchanges but everything else was face/heel and all four are guys who can do this stuff well.

PAS: Yeah this was pretty solid, Chico Che is worth watching even in short throw away matches like this. Barba Roja's finishing DDT was really nasty.

Ruleta de la Muerte – Quarterfinals: Eragon & Menfis vs. Cerebro Negro & Exodia

TKG: Never seen Menfis before but he really looks like a garbage wrestler with Slipknot mask, Pantera shirt and ill fitting baggy jeans. I kept on thinking he was going to step in his own hem. This was mostly a one man show with Cerebro Negro throwing out a huge tope on Menfis before match starts, teaching Exodia how to throw a chop, taking a giant posting, eating Eragon's too short tope,and going two on one against Eragon and Menfis (after his partner was eliminated) and only loosing in a really lucky BS fashion.

PAS: This was only about five minutes and everyone threw way too much stuff at the wall, there was four dives, crazy headrops way too much shit. You would think Menfis would be a slow starter who did some stalling and built to hot finish, but I guess not.

Ruleta de la Muerte – Semifinals: Ultraman Jr. & Arlequin Negro vs. AK-47 & Hijo del Pirata Morgan

TKG: We didn't get to see AK47 and Pirata's quarter final. They are the only team with two rudos (although feuding rudo factions) and weirdly they are the only team where you get the sense that partners don't get along, like they actively want to have a mask match against each other. Most of the match is Ultraman Jr and Arlequin Negro double teams and they team well. Arlequin Negro hits a huge tope. And there is an elaborate finish. Depending on where the ref was standing he could have DQd either team. The ref instead notices no chicanery and counts the pin straight. AK-47 and Pirata loose and unfortunately I don't think we ever get to see Arlequin Negro again. It is a shame as I enjoyed his work and imagine he would have allowed for long digressions into the relationship between Comedia Dell Arte and Minstrelsy.

PAS: In his brief appearances in this tourney Arlequin Negro looked like the best of the Arlequins, although he is pretty far down the list of lucha Negros. I really enjoyed the AK-47 and Pirata team as they were one of the few teams actually working the feuding partners gimmick. You knew they wouldn't end up in a mask match (having only one team put up their hair kind of telegraphs the booking), but you wanted to see it.

Ruleta de la Muerte – Semifinals: Cerebro Negro & Exodia vs. Chico Che & Gringo Loco

TKG: Chico Che comes into this match like he's Tenryu just absolutely beating the shit out of his opponents. Just hitting them crazy hard and tossing them recklessly. Even normal comedy stuff looked super violent. He does a bronco buster where it looks like he penetrated through the back of Cerebro Negro's skull. He hangs Exodia in a tree of woe and then he and Gringo spilt Cerebro Negro's leg around Exodia's face and the post which should be a "Ha Ha, we made you suck his dick" RnR Xpress v MX spot"s but instead is super violent. Post match Cerebro Negro slaps Exodia arond for stealing his pin, and Exodia stomps on Chico Che for no reason.

PAS: Exodia stomping on Chico Che was pretty weird considering they are both faces. It really felt like Exodia was legit pissed off at being chucked around. "Motherfucker you know I am fragile like a crystal vase, stop potatoing me." I cannot emphasize how awesome Chico Che was in this match, we already know what an awesome face brawler he is, great at bleeding, great at fiery comebacks, can go toe to toe with anyone. This match is the first time I have ever seen him brawl like a rudo and it was totally mind blowing. He is just vicious, running through both guys like a buzzsaw. This Chico Che Run in the end of 2009 was eye opening, he really looks like a top ten guy in the world.

Ruleta de la Muerte – Finals: AK-47 & Hijo del Pirata Morgan vs. Chico Che & Gringo Loco

TKG:This wasn't a ton. Ak-47 and Hijo del Pirata are still feuding but both willing to beat on Chico Che. Chico Che apparently decided to work each tourney match like a different fall. We've gotten to see his fast exchange fall and his stiff brawling fall. This was the sympathy selling into elaborate finish fall. And the elaborate finish is an awesome one. The heels move out of the way of a huge Chico Che in ring shoulder block tope where he accidentally topes his own partner. Chico Che then goes for the top rope to hit the big splash only to be hit by a AK-47 seated dropkick in a "HOLY SHIT!" finish.

PAS: Yeah the finish of this was really good, but the match was a little disappointing, they built the tourney really well, and made me desperately want to see this match, but the match itself was a little short, and didn't have the crazy brawl feeling I was hoping for.

Caballera contra Caballera: Gringo Loco vs. Chico Che

TKG: HOLY SHIT!! So this starts with Chico Che still selling the finish from last match and being unable to fight back against Gringo Loco. Loco busts him open on the metal container that holds the sodas in back of arena. When Chico Che regroups he again turns into Tenryu and just beats the absolute shit out of Gringo Loco. Busting him open, hitting him with stiff clotheslines, throwing Hotta style indifferent kicks, reckless slamming and kicking him on the ring ramp, and hitting the stiffest face wash I've ever seen. The two fight to apron where Che unsuccessfully tries to fight off a nasty powerbomb from the apron to the floor.

PAS: This was tremendous, both guys totally bring hell. This was violent in the way truly great violent lucha matches are, but it also had a really puro violence feel to it as well, with Chico Che facewashing and soccer kicking the living fuck out of a bloody Gringo Loco. Loco needed huge nasty offense to fire back from that, and he really did with a martinete and the apron powerbomb which Chico Che took like Foley. Loco was pretty great in this match, as this was his first really great performance of his IWRG run, but Chico Che motherfucker CHICO CHE!!

IWRG LIST

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Friday, May 28, 2010

IWRG 10/29/09

Pendulo/Mascara Magnifica v. Maldito Jr./Samot

TKG: This starts with some really fun Samot v Mascara Magnifica exchanges, some real pretty arm drags, then we get two on one beatings of Magnifica while keeping Pendulo out of the ring. Pendulo is fun as fired up babyface trying to get into ring, trying to attack against the odds, etc. But outside of the fire he doesn’t get to do much and looks off in a couple points.

PAS: I really like the Samot and Maldito Jr. team, they have really gotten good at the fat heel tag team. They remind me of a lucha Don Bass and Dirty Rhodes. They just kill the technicos in the first fall, chucking them around and hitting them with big throws and clotheslines. The second fall was like that too, although I liked how the technicos got their comeback with Magnifica hitting a really fast crazy dive, and Pendulo getting a trip and an armbar. Third fall was a little more back and forth which isn’t as good as when the heel dominated, but still fine. Solid stuff.

Avisman/Gringo Loco/El Hijo Del Diablo v. Bushi/Chico Che/Suicida

TKG: Not a ton happens in the first fall here. Avisman has some nice sections opposite Buschi and it’s kind of shitty that after all their work together All Japan hires some other luchador to work Buschi in Japan. Avisman could use a Japanese payday. Second fall Avisman looks to shoot headbutt Chico Che open and the match moves into a higher gear. Chico Che starts chasing Avisman to give him a receipt and then destroys Gringo Loco. Third fall has Chico Che doing some crazy Mascarita Sagrada level fast headscissors and exchanges with all the heels and we have crazy multiple dive trains from all your tecnicos.

PAS: Chico Che was an absolute superstar in this match, just a tremendous performance. I have talked a bunch before about how great he is selling as a bloodied babyface. Avisman is just vicious ripping him open and when Chico Che sees red he goes off. His opening exchanges in the third fall was some of the most spectacular, fast and beautiful lucha I can remember seeing and he does it all perfectly in the context of a bloody brawl. Che has had a great 2010 so far, and it looks like his 2009 might have been just as special

Dr. Cerebro/Cerebro Negro/Black Terry v. Trauma I/Trauma II/Ultraman Jr.

TKG: This starts with Dr Cerebro and Ultraman Jr doing technical exchanges built around trading nasty arm wringer variations. Then Black Terry matches up with Trauma I and Cerebro Negro matches up with Trauma II doing exchanges of submissions. Trauma puts on a submission that hurts the opponent can’t escape but won’t tap to, and then opponent slaps on submission that works the same body part. This whole thing is really made by both Terry and Cerebro Negro’s selling. Second fall is the fast exchange fall and these are superfast Gods Must Be Crazy stop motion animation fast exchanges. Black Terry and Ultraman Jr look to blow a bunch of things but they keep going and the awkwardness gives a real violent feel to the fast exchange section as they look to be forcing each other into stuff. That’s the sense you get throughout this fall as it’s super stiff and super fast. Things may be moving so fast that these guys can’t perform as smoothly as you normally see in most “quick exchange” caidas. Third fall also has some rough moments but these guys are professionals and know how to make that add to the feel of an actual fight. Like Tina Turner these guys can do nothing nice and easy, they’re all about the nice and rough.

PAS: Dinastia De La Muerte v. Terrible Cerebros was the feud of the year in IWRG in 2009, this was that match up with Ultraman Jr. replacing Negro Navarro. That is a huge step down it talent, as Ultraman Jr. is slightly above average and Navarro was the best wrestler in the world in 2009. It kind of works in this match though, as Navarro's absence forces the Traumas to step up huge and really become the focus of the match. The opening mat sections were long and awesome, that kind of machismo mat wrestling, where guys show their skill by tying up and then releasing their opponent can be overdone in IWRG, but it is really great here. Everyone sells pain and frustration tremendously, and you really buy this as a test of machismo, no one is going to tap and they are all desperate to prove the more skilled luchadore. Tom was right about the ragged awesomeness of the second and third falls, it gets faster and more violent and more reckless and it feels like it is going to spiral completely out of control. I have no problem with a low blow finish, but this felt like it should have built to a total explosion, and the finish deflated it a bit. Still a tremendous match, right up there with the best matches of 2009.

Pirata Morgan/Toxico/Hijo Del Pirata Morgan v. Brazo De Plata/911/Fiero


TKG: So it's Pirata Family and Toxico v Team Pig, which is an odd match up as you wouldn't expect Porky and the Oficiales to work as a team. But Porky and Pirata have issues and Oficiales having issues with Jr Piratas and somehow the whole dynamic of Super Porky as Commando Zero with Oficiales ends up working. Brazo again goes up for the big slam from Pirata and does a splash from apron to floor. Him and 911 do an amusing comedy spot built around them stopping the match to preplan how they will handle being irish whipped into each other (heels do same thing only to both go for leapfrogs and crash). Fierro is also really fun in this, fighting back from three on ones, doing an in ring baseball slide to avoid a clothesline, hitting a big tope, throwing some nasty clotheslines and covering for Toxico's more creative nonsense.

PAS: This was the least match on the show which is really no slur considering how great this show was. Toxico doesn't even come in with his spark shooting gimmick, so he serves zero purpose. Porky as the third Oficiale really is great, you get a sense you could stick Porky in a trios with any two good luchadores and he can tailor his shtick to make it work. Hijo Del Pirata looked better then usual too, as he executed all of the horseshit well and was cracking people with his superkick.

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Michael PS Hayes/Jimmy Garvin/BADSTREET~! vs. Tracey Smothers/Steve Armstrong/Dustin Rhodes 6/16/91

This was originally written back in 2004/05 as part of the Dustin of the Day project. Match will appear on Schneider comp 24

Ok, so I really dig this match. But when Phil asked me if I wanted to write something about it, I kind of begged off. I had already reviewed a Tracey Smothers match that was filled with stalling. And I already reviewed a match where I spent the focus of the review on talking about shtick and theatricality. I was unsure whether I could really get across the difference between the stylized theatricality in Dustin/Steamboat vs. Arn/Zbyzsco and the shtick in this match. In the tag match the shtick was all really incorporated into the match as storytelling device. In the Freebirds match the story is the shtick and the shtick is the story. I wasn’t sure if I could get that across and then it occurred to me….I’m going to write a two part review of Freebirds vs. Dustin/Young Pistols. A couple reasons to do this. One the narrative arch really separates nicely into two parts and splitting it into two allows you to see how each part builds as well as than making the links as to how the concluding part reflects the opening part. Two it helps to really capture the epic quality of this match. Three this match is built on stalling which is delay of gratification…thus me not giving the reader the whole thing at once kind of mirrors the match nicely. And four, the idea of writing this in two parts just amuses me to no end.

Tracey Smothers:

"That's called working. That's old school"“


This match is part of the endless series of Freebirds vs. Young Pistols matches from the early nineties. For a while it seems like every major show, every Clash, PPV has some sort of matchup between these two teams. A tag match, a six man, a match with Brad instead of Steve, a match with Bullet Bob, a match with Buddy Roberts…just endless series of matches and by and large those matches are really not good. You would think after the third mediocre match between two teams they’d pair them up with different people, but you’d be wrong. The Freebirds and Young Pistols with Dustin had a six-man match on a Clash that I’d recommend avoiding, as it’s not much. However, they deliver the one great match in the series on the Pro.

This takes place after the Ricky Morton turn. At the time of the turn, Ricky Morton, JYD, and Tommy Rich had the six man belts. Morton turns heel, will no longer tag with them, allowing the Freebirds to win the six- man title in a three on two. Thus, the Freebirds are double champions, with both the US Tag Title and the Six Man belts.

These are the Freebirds of the nineties.

These are not the Freebirds that people talk about as being HOF material. NO, no, no they are not.

This is Michael PS Hayes and Jimmy Garvin. Michael PS Hayes is a guy who came to the fore by being the guy who knew how to throw one good looking punch and knew lots of heat getting shtick to do on the floor while Buddy Roberts and Terry Gordy did the in ring work for the Freebirds. Jimmy Garvin is a guy who knew how to do a lot of heat gathering shtick and stalling to piss off Canadians while Ronnie Garvin did all the wrestling work for the Garvins’ team.

And then there’s Badstreet. And well Badstreet kind of rules. I’m watching all this WCW and been enjoying a lot of Brad Armstrong. During this period, Brad wrestles both as Brad and also as one ridiculous gimmick after another. The neat thing to watch is Brad really puts his all into each gimmick. WCW puts Tim Horner in a mask and he wrestles like Tim Horner with a mask on. They put Brad into a Spiderman mask and he wrestles like a face luchador with lots of in ring topes and a majistral type finisher. You tell him that he’s going to be Badstreet and he wrestles like a combo of Tony Arce and Andy Barrow, lots of rudo mannerisms and he slinks around like a combo of Jake the Snake and Snidely Whiplash.

So you’ve got two guys who specialize in heel stalling plus the worker of your team who also has excellent rudo mannerisms. Then you add to that the president of the Diamond Mine DDP, some arm candy, and another manager in Big Daddy Dink. So you have a total of five guys who are there to gather heel heat only one of who can actually do the wrestling. One of the problems with I think most of the Freebirds vs. Pistols matches is that they tried to ignore that dynamic and actually work a wrestling match. On the Pro, someone realized "What are the Freebirds doing wrestling? They should just be stalling."

And this may be one of the greatest stallfest matches you’ll ever see.

This isn’t one of those matches with stalling, where there is just a lot of stalling at the beginning. NO. They incorporate the stalling into every part of this match. One almost needs to develop a workrate system for stalling in this match as these guys don’t just lay in the stall, they work the stall, milk the stall…the number of stalls per minute is almost athletically impressive. Its not that they just go to ref to complain about a fast count, they do five minutes of stalling around complaining about a fast count. The stalls have psyche, build and emotionally satisfying finishes.

Michael PS Hayes and Dustin Rhodes start the match off with Michael PS Hayes doing an extended offended stall, “You want a piece of me? You think you can take me? “ which eventually elicits a “FREEBIRDS SUCK! FREEBIRD SUCK!” chant from the audience.

Both Tracey Smothers and Dustin are really good at working a crowd chant, pointing to the crowd stomping, establishing the chant rhythm…trying to get different sides of the arena to join in, etc.

Hayes is upset and he walks around circling with Dustin while Hayes looks at the audience dejected. He walks away from Dustin grabs the top rope in the heel corner does a Flash Dance-ish bend and bounce while holding top rope. Hayes finger swishes through his own hair while his hips perfectly mirror his finger swivel. Hayes then bodyglides forwards a couple steps and then moonwalks back. After that elaborate display he turns to audience for approval “How Bout that?”
Of course he is met by:

FREEBIRDS SUCK !!
FREEBIRDS SUCK !!

This leads to Hayes bailing out of the ring for a bit to further heat up the crowd and then eventually getting back in to lock up with Dustin. Dustin controls this section with Hayes trying to regain control of a rope running section by putting up his leg, Dustin catches the leg and turns it into an atomic drop (think the Nakamura shooty catch spot). Hayes is atomic dropped into face corner where all three faces get to wail on him before he runs to bail out by running to Jimmy Garvin on the apron and jumping into his protecting arms.

The crowd goes nuts. Dustin points and does the swishy hand sign. Garvin and Hayes both do a thou do protest too much “oh no yuck we’re not like that” mime. Tracey Smothers goes to crowd and rhythmically points and starts a “FAGGOTS! FAGGOTS!” chant. I so need to see THUGS vs. Gangstas handhelds now, just to see Smothers try to start SPEARCHUCKA chants.

They stall some more and milk the gay bashing heat as much as Hayes milked the original “Freebirds suck” heat. Jimmy Garvin yells at the crowd to “Shut UP!” and you can hear a tinge of sadness in his voice. Garvin goes to Big Daddy Dink to look for approval and says and I quote “It’s not what you think” to which Dink says “ENOUGH. ENOUGH.” He doesn’t want to hear about it. Dink’s tone is great as I imagine it is same tone Dick Cheney used when his daughter first introduced the family to Gretchen during break her freshman year.

Hayes, Garvin, Dink and Badstreet try to comfort each other about getting the faggot chant and well let's be honest those four guys huddled conferring is going to only make that chant louder. I mean anyone of those guys alone could elicit that response but all four in a huddle make Raven’s Flock look like a minor league Hockey team. Even Pena’s most demented wet dream inspired trios teams look straight next to the Dink, Garvin, Hayes, Badstreet foursome.

Then Hayes does his first stall involving Nick Patrick, as he goes for Nick Patrick for support against the crowd’s misunderstanding. Patrick sells discomfort at Hayes’ advances.

Again, I want to emphasize here how good of a ref Patrick is, as he really knows how to mime to get over his communication with both teams over to the audience.

This was the early nineties when WCW was using Bill Alfonso, because they needed someone on their crew who was able to translate for El Gigante…this never made any sense to me… I mean Phillip Sierra or Richard Santana would have made such great members of York Foundation as not only would they be turning on the working class values of people who go by their nicknames but they’d also be denying their culture…plus both had experience working Matt Borne… but instead WCW brought in Alfonso.

Anyway, I can’t see this match working half as well if it was reffed by either Bill Alfonso or Randy Anderson.

Hayes back in with Dustin, Dustin gets an armwringer and a high hiptoss on Hayes. Hayes runs to Patrick again with the “wait wait he pulled my tights” classic stall. Hayes does less with this stall then any of the other ones in this match. Hayes forces Patrick to ask the audience whether his tights were pulled and the crowd answers in the negative.

So, this stall continues three of the storylines that they lay out over the course of match:

(1)Freebirds trying to control the pace of the match by using the ref, much to the consternation of the faces. Hayes going to ref elicits this great “aw c’mon man? For real?” facial sell from Dustin.
(2)Michael PS Hayes’ disappointment with the crowd. There is a lot of jawing with the crowd in this match and instead of it being the wrestler telling the fans that “hey you in the front row, you’re fat” or mocking the local sports team, or just mocking the crowd heelishly…Hayes’ jawing and stalling comes out of disappointment. Hayes is so full of himself that he can’t understand how the crowd doesn’t worship him too.
(3) That the Freebirds in fact do suck. These are guys who need to slow it down…not after a suplex or even a bodyslam…but even a hiptoss is a dangerous throw and time to bail out.

It’s not as complex or as deep a stall as most of the other ones but I want to make clear that it doesn’t break from the psychology of the match.

Hayes goes for a couple strikes but Dustin catches him with another armwringer into an arm drag which he drops the leg on while simultaneously tagging Tracey. Dustin holds Hayes arm out for Tracy to hit with a diving top rope chop. Not the most impressive series of moves strung together. But its nine minutes into this match and the faces are able to string four moves together without the heels breaking up the momentum…the crowd pops like they hit an SSP.

Hayes escapes a wrist lock with a kick and manages to tag in Jimmy Garvin. Garvin is immediately caught in an armwringer into a standing arm bar. Garvin has no escape for a simple armbar. Overwhelmed by the arm bar he has no choice but to back Tracey into the corner, forcing the ref to come over and break the armbar.

YOU SUCK!!!
YOU SUCK!!!


Garvin now free of the armbar, Fargo Struts.

FREEBIRDS SUCK!
FREEBIRDS SUCK!

Dustin climbs the ropes to start a pro-face handclap.

Garvin gets a waistlock takedown on Smothers who easily escapes and takes Garvin down with a shouldertackle followed by a hiptoss. AW FUCK NOT A HIPTOSS.

Hayes runs in to stop Smothers from being able to follow up on the hiptoss. Hayes ends up eating a hiptoss and both Freebirds eat superkicks. Badstreet threatens getting in the ring but Tracey scares him off with karate poses.

The heels regroup on the ground
Dink “We’ve got to get them on the mat”
Hayes “We’re the champs. We’ve got to slow it down”
They all agree “We’ve got to slow it down”

Slow it down? The match is past the ten minute mark. The faces have only strung more than two moves together once. The only throws in this match have been one atomic drop and two hiptosses. They’re going to try to slow it down even more than that? And that really captures the dynamic of the match. The faces have won every single exchange in the match, but the heels are totally controlling the match.

Garvin is back in with Smothers. Garvin gets taken down and pinned for a two count. 1,2, kick out…
Hayes gets into ring to complain to Patrick “HEY HEY HEY!!! What was that?”
Garvin turns to Patrick to complain about the fast count too.
Garvin “That was 1..2.…It’s supposed to be one…………………..two………………three”
Patrick practices the tempo that Garvin proposes.

The long ellipses don’t really capture the tempo that the Freebirds try to set.
Hmmm. Sing Freak-a-leak to yourself. If Patrick were to use the tempo the Freebirds want, Petey Pablo could list off two and a half stripper names between each count on the mat.

[ Shameka. Keisha. Ta-]ONE!
[ Shonda, Sabrina, Chris-] TWO!
[Monique, Christina, Yo-] THREE!

Garvin and Hayes clap the rhythm to Patrick:

[Sabrina, Daronda, Sha-] ONE!
[Tenisha, Mocha, Kie-] TWO!
[Christina, Veronica, Sa] THREE!

Hayes counts it off to Big Daddy Dink.:

[Shameka. Keisha. Ta-]ONE !
[ Shonda, Sabrina, Chris-] TWO!
[Monique, Christina, Yo-]THREE

Dink counts it off with Patrick coming in at 2.

[Sabrina, Daronda, Sha-] ONE!
[Tenisha, Mocha, Kie-] TWO!
[Christina, Veronica, Sa] THREE!

All four Freebirds count it off with Patrick.

[Yolanda, Christina. Mel-] ONE!
[Precious, Aisha, Sha] TWO!
[Tiara, Shavonda, Cha]THREE!

Garvin rolls up Smothers. So of course Patrick ambles over

[Mya, Victoria, Ki-] …ONE!
[Chandra..] kick out
Crowd pops.

Freebirds are infuriated.

Hayes jumps back in the ring and Hayes and Garvin back Patrick up into the neutral corner.

“What was that?!!!!”

We repeat the same exact shtick but this time with the Freebirds wanting a quick 16th note count.

The great thing about a comedy spot like this is you know what’s going to happen next and you just get giddy with anticipation. Every time Big Daddy Dink demonstrates to Patrick he fast count he wants..you just get more giddy.

Smothers gets the sunset flip, quick count… Freebirds lose it and regroup on the floor. Great comedy spot with nice set up and delivery leaves the crowd with grins on their faces. For meaningless two-count section in middle of match, I don’t remember any Malenko/Guerrero roll up two-count exchange leaving me that satisfied.

Smothers starts another FREEBIRDS SUCK ! chant.
FREEBIRDS SUCK!
FREEBIRDS SUCK!

Jimmy Jam gets back in the ring and calls out Armstrong; “I want you Punk!” Steve hits a really pretty Taguchi style drop kick with a high angle and full extension and just a pretty pretty landing.

After eating the dropkick, Garvin goes to the floor. Dink massages his back.
“You’ve got to take your time, take your time.”
“Your alright, Your alright, got to slow it down”

Hayes tags himself back in and struts. He then does this elaborate hair flip where he bends at the waist to start the hair flip and then swivels his hips. The audience catcalls start. He does not understand why they cannot appreciate his hair and swivels. Hayes yells at the audience and he starts a faces fast clap and stomp for himself. No one in the crowd joins in and he does this hilariously sad defeated slowing clap down. He cannot understand why they won’t get behind him. And Hayes is left with nothing but his slow handclap for himself. It’s a hilariously pathetic spot.

If HBK were smart at all he could work a spot like this beautifully in Canada, instead he just claps and stomps in a vacuum as though the crowd isn’t there.

The Pistols and Rhodes start pointing to crowd and get the face handclap, which only makes Hayes face look sadder. Dejected, Hayes headlocks Armstrong and goes for a sunset flip attempt. Armstrong is able to just lean down and pound on Hayes to block the flip. Hayes bails from the punching and ends up backing himself up into the wrong corner where he again is met with the bionic elbow which turns him around right into a Armstrong dropkick. This time Armstrong's kick is much more compact like a cannon ball.

Hayes calls for time out. Patrick won’t give him the T. Garvin demands that Hayes get a T. Still Patrick won’t go for it.

Badstreet wants in. Hayes turns to the gimp and tells him in a tone one might use with your submissive “No, Badstreet not yet”. Badstreet looks across ring taunting the faces, points at them “you and you and you” and then makes the neck slash. He then points to the crowd and tells them to SHUT UP. Badstreets interaction with the crowd and the Pistols/Dustin team is completely different than that of the rest of the Freebirds. Badstreet is a classic rudo and just BAD; he’s not looking for anyone’s approval.

And really, this is the end of the first chapter of this match. The chapter ended much the same way it began with Hayes bailing after accidentally ending up in the face corner and getting hit by Dustin.

The story thus far is that Hayes and Garvin want social approval while Badstreet just wants to do damage. Hayes controls Badstreet. It is pretty clear the gimp will only be released once the faces are tied to the chair. Faces have controlled all the wrestling exchanges but the heels have controlled the match. Heels haven’t won a single exchange yet. But through stalling and taking advantage of the ref the heels almost never let the faces get more than one mid range move off in a row. The faces want to quicken the tempo of the match but have been blocked each time they try something. We’re at the fifteen minute point and the crowd has been kept from getting what they want. And they’re going to be rabid to get it.

Tracey Smothers:

“That’s called working. That’s old school


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Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Summer of Segunda Caida

Expect big things from the blog this summer.

-Daily updates: Expect something new from SC every day, new IWRG reviews, Complete and Accurate lists, XCW-Midwest, JAPW, classic stuff

-New Schneider Comp dropping Monday, listen to the podcast Will and I did talking up the matches. We should be posting reviews of some of Schneider comp selections over the next couple of days

-Weekly radio shows, we have been on an erratic schedule, but expect Segunda Caida radio every week

-New projects, we have some ideas in the hopper and should be posting new stuff soon.

-Possible end of summer mystery project. What is it? Who knows?


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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

IWRG 2/4/10

Brazo Metalico Jr/Platino v. Commando Negro/Keshin Black

PAS: Another solid undercard tag match, the kind of match where no one particularly stood out good or bad. Brazo Metalico Jr. hit all of his highflying stuff well, he is pretty similar to Imperial, although taller, and it will be interesting to watch their simultaneous development. Platino looked pretty good too, solid on the mat and on his feet.

TKG: Who the fuck is Platino? Cubsfan has this match listed as being Brazo de Platino and Brazo Metalico, but that guy isn’t wearing a Brazos mask. He’s wearing a Metalicos mask. No way is he original Platino but he is a guy who looked like he had been wrestling at minimum five years longer than Commando Negro. Like a contemporary of of Commando Gama or Macho II. I would kind of like to see Platino v Macho II exchanges. It kind of threw off the normal rookie undercard rudos control rookie undercard faces formula.

Torneo Cibernetico: Avisman/Black Terry/Bombero Infernal/Dr. Cerebro/Gringo Loco/Hijo del Pantera/Las Traumas I y II v. Alan Extreme/Dinamic Black/Eros/Guizmo/Hijo del Signo/Imperial/Maldito Jr./Samoth

PAS: This was young guns v. IWRG regulars and was a bunch of fun. Had surprisingly few botched spots for a match with so many green guys in it. Black Terry starts it out with Hijo Del Signo and they rip it up on the mat. Terry was so great in both his mat and later brawling sections, he had so much fire and energy. Bombero Infernal was back with a vengeance here, he had this real reckless energy about him, he seemed totally out of control on all of his bumps, almost felt Jerry Estradaish, he started the dive train with an insane looking tope where he almost went vertical. Imperial and Dinamic Black were the stand outs on the youngsters team, both guys flipped and spun around, and broke out big time dives too. I am starting to really dig all of Dinamic Blacks crazy springboards, he really has tremendous balance, and if he can smooth out the other parts of his game, he could really be special. Gringo Loco looked off here, he may still be suffering from KOing himself on Sunday. They had some dissension between him and Black Terry and I hope his head is right for their cage hair match.

TKG: This was a blast. I want to 100% back Phil on Bombero Infernal. This is a match filled with nutty rookie highflyers bumping around trying to get noticed. Still the nuttiest highflyer may have been Bombero Infernal. There was no sense of batting order. Truama I didn’t come into the match till long after other guys on his team had been in 2/3 times. When Trauma I did come in he was super impressive, eliminating Imperial, Maldito Jr and Dinamic Black (with an Argentine Backbreaker into over the knee backbreaker that every indy “powerhouse” wrestler should steal), and also had a fun section with Hijo Del Signo. Signo is working as a “Nueva Estrella” so maybe he should be considered in out monthly NKOTB votes, and he really impressed. He was booked really strong, getting two pins and being the last guy in for his team. The advantage of being booked strong is that you look strong. Disadvantage is that type of booking can really expose a rookie. Signo didn’t look exposed. He had multiple fun sections with Terry, Trauma I, Bombero Infernal, and Dr Cerebro. Signo just comes off really comfortable in the ring and eats brawling stuff really well. Every time he matches up with someone they will knock him for a loop and he is a guy who has multiple ways of splaying himself while resisting getting knocked for a loop.

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

XCW Midwest Payback Time 10/17/09

Todd Morton v. The Real Deal Derrick Neal

TKG: It’s Todd Morton working a pretty straight opener . No heat garnering horseshit. I assume Derrick Neal is a trainee or something as this was laid out really well but Neal’s execution felt really rookie level.

PAS: Todd Morton is a tremendous wrestler, but we only got to see flashes of this here. I loved the spot where he backed Neal into the corner and mule kicked him low, and the payback spot out of the knuckle lock and bridge was cool too. Still Neal didn’t contribute much and we only got a page or two of the Morton playbook

New Age Assassin v. Platinum Chris Phoenix

PAS: Platinum Chris Phoenix (which is a god awful name) is a really thick guy who kind of looks and wrestles like an indy Brock Lesner. Assassin does a nice job bumping around for all of Phoenixes shoulder blocks and bodyslams, and sneaks in shots here and there. Phoenix was clearly pretty early in his training, but he hit a nasty finishing supelex and was an impressive specimen for indy wrestling. I think he would be pretty good as a Mitch Ryder tag partner to work the apron and come into hit big spots on the heels.

TKG: Yeah I dug this. New Age Assassin flies around for Chris Phoenix and then does the SNME face chases heel around ring till face is ambushed coming into ring. I really dug all of New Age Assassin’s cheap shot into offense moves as he never did anything that was unbelievable given the size difference, but when he was in control you totally bought him in control

Simon Sezz v. Jason Bradley

TKG: Last two matches had kind of bulky oiled up babyfaces. This one had Simon Sezz. And we are in workrate T-shirted indy wrestling territory here.I’ve really been digging Simon Sezz of late as he is a guy who works real 2002 Alex Shelley offense but works it into this really old school face/heel context without it coming off as either masturbatory moves or ironic winking. I’ve never seen Jason Bradley but he was fun as heavyset T-shirted heel vs skinny T shirted face, doing amusing stooge bumps and cutting Sezz off with big throws.

PAS: I am not sure whether Simon Sezz would stand out in Evolve, but having one guy do Evolvish offense in a fed like this kind of works. He really knows how to put 2000 ends offense in context. His fancy shit looks less Chris Sabin and more Skip Young.

Bull Pain v. Flash Flanagan

TKG: So I’ve really been enjoying title match Flash Flannigan as a guy who always has neat finishes done well. Here unfortunately the finish felt abrupt and semi blown. Everything up to the finish was amazing. Bull Pain is just a wrecking machine, and Flash is a guy who comes off tough for taking Pain’s stuff and waiting for his spots to crotch Pain against the ring post. I’ve seen lots of distract a ref spots and there is just something natural about Flash’s distract a ref spots where it feels less formula and more like the way you actually distract a cashier in a store before robbing them.

PAS: Bull Pain is one of the more believably violent guys in all of wrestling. I have seen a lot of great looking headbutts in my day, but Pain aims his forehead right at Flash’s temple and just looks debilitating. Flash fires back just as rough, and he is truly one of the best wrestlers I have ever seen at timing his comebacks, there is an awesome moment where he catches Pain with a DDT right as he is entering the ring and it is just perfectly done. It is too bad the finish was so awkward, because this was pretty close to a tremendous match

Mitch Ryder v. Chris Michaels

PAS: This was that tremendous match though. This was a feud ending falls count anywhere match, and was one of the times where XCW-Midwest reached the big time Memphis main event heights that they aim for. They start with a pretty great arena tour with both guys exchanging big shots and they climb up and down the bleachers. This is a fed full of guys with great looking right hands, but Michaels was winning the contests with some corkers. It slows down some in the middle with both guys bleeding and selling fatigue, and then they build again to a big time finish run with a bunch of spots around a steel chair. They weren’t using the chair innovatively, it was just an exclamation point to all of their shots. XCW is a fed with some questionable finishes to big matches, this finish felt like the ending of both a match and a feud. Great shit, and exactly why I watch this fed.

TKG: Yeah this was the match. This was a pretty fun card top to bottom. And this match on the top is not just the reason why you watch this fed, but pretty much the reason why you watch wrestling. They just go at it all over the arena with Ryder attacking Chris to start and then the bleacher tour with constant teases of big falls. The look on Ryder’s face when he realizes he has drawn first blood, looking at the blood on his hands and realizing where it came from, is great. The crowd is totally behind Ryder and you feel yourself chanting “Go Mitch go” too. All of the nearfalls are really dramatic, with nothing feeling thrown away.

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IWRG 10/22/09

La Rata v. Exodia

TKG: I don’t think I’ve seen La Rata in over a decade. Was he always this bad? I think one of the problems with the DVD revolution is that everything looks so clean. La Rata with live rats on his head on a third generation dubbed videotape off Mexican TV really looked scummy. On a DVD on an HD flatscreen, the rats just look clean and well cared for. I’ve also seen Crispin Glover sing Ben, and it takes more than one rat in someone’s hair to make me go “ick”.

PAS: This maybe one of the only Exodia matches I have ever seen where he didn’t seriously injure himself. Considering how awkward and sloppy La Rata looked you wouldn’t think this would be the match he would break his streak.

El Hijo del Diablo & Gringo Loco vs. Pendulo & Star Boy

PAS: I wasn’t expecting this to be much, as Gringo Loco didn’t seem to catch fire in his 2009 stuff, but this was surprisingly great. Star Boy is both the ugliest and talented of the guys working stripper gimmicks in the indies and he looked totally awesome, working some very fast exchanges with both rudos. Pendulo had some cool roll ups. Diablo is tremendous and this was his debut in the Gringo gimmick, his stuff lands with a nice thud and he really is really expressive in everything he does.

TKG: I thought Pendulo was more hit and miss than usual but Star Boy was hitting everything on all cylinders. His opening mat exchanges with Diablo were really cool, as were his last fall opening quick exchanges with Gringo Loco (they do an awesome sweep the leg spot), all his highflying was really violent looking and he gets huge height for a guy who looks like he’d have trouble getting off a barstool. Both the technicos and the rudos try to counter getting thrown into their own partners through a whole series of “grab your partner doesy doe spins” only for the tecnicos to catch the rudos in a star. This match put a big smile on my face.

Black Terry, Pirata Morgan, Tóxico vs. Brazo de Plata, Chico Che, Suicida

TKG: Man! Man, this was the good stuff! So I was kind of expecting this to be guys doing a match of nothing but comedy spots and charisma but not expecting anything near this good. We saw Brazo de Plata live around the same time and he was enormous, I didn’t expect him to be able to leave his feet let alone do the flying take down of two heels spot or eating a ridiculous slam from Pirata (where Porky looks to go up rotate so he looks like he is falling head first and then follow through to land on back). Plata is a guy who knows how to work comedy but also knows how to work in and out of that comedy. Chico Che hurt himself in the ropes on a dive in the first fall, which leads to Black Terry spending the second fall blading him and working him over on the floor. Third fall is built around Chico Che bleeding like a stuck pig and fighting three on ones trying to get the tag. Lots of near tag spots with the refs missing the tag and lots of heels cutting off ring till Chico Che can get off his in ring shoulder tackle tope and every one goes at it. Really elaborate finish that makes you want to see a revancha.

PAS: Yeah this was a totally great match. Chico Che has a huge shit eating grin during the opening Porky dance, you can tell this is a dream come true for him. We start with some really slick Black Terry v. Suicida matwork. They are a pair of guys who have worked against each other for years, and they clearly have their stuff down pat. This is by far the best Toxico has ever looked, he is a guy who clearly spent a ton on his gear, but nothing on his training, but he looks perfectly mediocre brawling, and beat Suicida with a sick looking lifted flatliner. Third fall is truly awesome as Porky and Pirata start brawling, and Chico Che continues to be one of the best sympathy sellers in the world.


Flor Metalica vs. Atsuko Emoto

TKG: This is a show that didn’t look like much on paper but outside of the opener has delivered the goods. This isn’t a particularly good match but it is a really fun spectacle. This is worked very much joshi style where the whole match is built around seconds interference. In lucha you expect the ref to throw out the seconds or the commissioner to throw out the ref or something. In joshi the face’s seconds would constantly run in and interfere on the heels’s seconds interference. But this is lucha where the ref had to pretend not to see stuff, and Metalica’s second had to play Robert Gibson role of guy distracting the ref with complaints. I don’t know how much johsi or RnR Express Bushi has seen but he didn’t add much. Still Flor Metalica took a beating (Emoto would braid her hair into a pony tail before hair mareing her around ring) , bled a bunch and would comeback with nasty crowbar offense and a spectacularly stiff silla dive.

PAS: This was tremendously entertaining stuff although I am not sure how good it was. Flor Metlaica gets triple teamed choked and bloodied with chain, and she fires back with some absolutely teeth loosening shots. Emoto apparently fights MMA and I don’t know if anyone in Smackgirl hit her harder then she got hit with that corner clothesline. Tom was really accurate about the style clash, Emoto isn’t particularly good at LCO joshi shtick, but even that shtick done well wouldn’t really fit in lucha libre.

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Saturday, May 22, 2010

IWRG January Awards

Wrestler of the Month:

PAS: Negro Navarro: Man what a great month Navarro had, we get to see three different iterations of Navarro v. Solar, including a true master class on the 28th. Add that to a pair of textbook carry jobs of Angelico and finish it off with a great battle against the Piratas, he really did it all. The 2009 wrestler of the year is hitting 2010 running. If we keep getting footage he could win walking away.

TKG: Dr Cerebro. This was a real hard one as it came down to Cerebro and Terry. Both guys were in the best trios match of the month (Navarro, Terry, Cerebro v Solar, Segura, Zatura) and the best tag brawl (Terry, Cerebro v Gringo Loco, Hijo Del Diablo) and consistently good. Terry was the more impressive guy in both the tag and trio but Dr Cerebro had two big singles matches (the good but disappointing Bushi match and the really great singles match with Hijo Del Diablo) and so I’m giving it to Cerebro for the month. I should say that it’s a real shame that we don’t get to see Solar in non-Navarro matches. There are clips of Solar, Segura, Zatura v Maldito, Samor, Bombero Infernal (from same show as the Navarro v Angelico match) on youtube. I imagine if we got to see more Solar, he would have been a candidate as well.

Match of the Month:

PAS: Traumas v. Suicida/Zatura: There were lots of great matches in the month of January, and on a different day I could see myself picking a different match. Pretty much my two favorite things in wrestling are cool intricate mat wrestling and violent stiff brawling, and this had the Traumas rip it up on the mat and then lay in a super vicious beating. Short second and third falls which is a problem in other IWRG matches this month, but what we saw was completely awesome

TKG: Black Terry/Dr Cerebro/Negro Navarro v Zatura/Suicida/Solar. This was six guys hitting on all cylinders pushing a trios match to where you expecting hair and mask challenges from everyone at the end. Often times in trios matches with Solar on one side and Navarro on the other, everyone else falls into the background. This was one of the best Solar v Navarro match ups I’ve seen. And instead of becoming mere backdrop the other four participants just pushed themselves to keep up with that level.

New Kid on the Block:

PAS: Dinamic Black: This new group of rookies are really similar, they have varying levels of promise, with varying levels of polish. Dinamic Black has some warts, but his crazy springboards set him apart. Really crazy balance and flips, his signature dive is nuts, and he stands out in a way some of other guys don't.

TKG: Not sure when we define “New Kid”. Hijo Del Signo and Eragon I guess first started showing in 09, although so did Guizmo. But of the 16 other rookies I’m going to go with Imperial. Instead of having everyone pair off in the fist fall of a match, the new IWRG match formula is one face and one heel pair off and then it breaks down into rudo triple teaming faces. It’s a format that needs guys who can work expressive sympathy baby face. I think Imperial is the guy with the flashy dives and who does the expressive sympathy face stuff the best.

We started up an IWRG fan board so go join and discuss the best wrestling in the world

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IWRG 1/31/10

First two matches are on Cubsfans Dailmotion page

Second two matches are on Black Terry Jr.'s Youtube

Eragon/Heros v. El Hijo Del Signo/Heavy Boy

PAS: You have to love IWRG, as they go ahead and put a 25 minute tag match between rookies on TV. The first fall was really good, with a long exchange between Heros and Signo being the highlight. Heros has really cool ankle pick takedowns, and these two guys work really well with each other. Eragon was stuck mostly matched up against Heavy Boy which can be rough. Middle of the match dragged a bit, but they picked up for a nice exciting ending with a really good looking double tope by the technicos. Very good stuff, and the 2010 undercard tends to be better then similarly placed matches in 2009.

TKG: There really is no explanation for airing these matches and not the two mains. Teleformula had been moving in an all stips/big match direction and happy to see them get in touch with the bizzaro spirit that makes IWRG Tv such a pleasure. I am not anywhere near as sold on the Heros/Signo section and thought the first fall was pretty disappointing. Heros/Eros and Signo had some interesting ideas (I especially dug Heros/Eros knucklelock flip thing and Signo’s rolling half nelson) but there was a real herky jerky pacing to it as I didn’t think they knew how to sell those ideas to make them meaningful or what to do between neat ideas. Where Heros really impressed was in his lucha face in peril stuff, as he sells and crumples and falls and fights to his feet in ways that really made the heel double teams work. Really disappointing Eragon outing as this may be the worst primera caida I’ve seen him in. He did a face wins every exchange section, which might work with a rudo like Commando Negro who knows how to work heel who begs off and looses but Heavy Boy can’t do much. The Eragon German was pretty nice looking and he should really use that as a finisher more often.

Angelico/Hijo Del Pantera/La Pantera v. Veneno/Trauma II/Gringo Loco

PAS: Bad match with a couple of nice moments. There is two minutes of nifty Pantera v. Trauma II matwork at the start of the match, Veneno has a couple of nice DDT's and I really liked Angelico's miming of a low blow bullshit finish. Everything else in this sucked though. Gringo Loco KO's himself on a 450 splash, so the second two falls are 3 technicos vs. 2 rudos which is pretty difficult to work sensibly. Plus this had tons of awful looking Angelico garbage.

TKG:There really wasn’t much to that Pantera v Trauma II matwork. Just veteran domination till everyone starts throwing fists. They then go into long three on one heels beat up a face while keeping the other two faces out of the ring. Unfortunately, none of the faces can do Heros/Eros level face in peril selling ( well Pantera probably could but he was working “Walking Tall” face) . The heels beating on faces two on three section wasn't much better. It should also be said that you are a shitty face team when you're comeback three on two offense doesn't look believable. It's a power play and I don't buy the Pantera's and Angelico as guys who can take advantage of the handicap matchup. Angelico’s fake foul may be the best thing I’ve ever seen Angelico do. Angelico always does really bullshit looking “wrestling is fake” selling. Everything about him feels "fake". Him as douchebag who points to his head self satisfied while faking a foul really played to his strengths.

El Hijo Del Diablo v. Dr. Cerebro

PAS: Great match, the best singles match of the month and the best Cerebro singles since his Santo series. Did a very cool job combining a traditional lucha title match with a chapter of a bloody feud. Despite the bad blood, both guys started working the mat, that is how you wrestle a title match and the rudos are going to try to prove their technique. Diablo isn't a maestro, but he did a good job using his bulk to hold down Cerebro. I also really liked the finish of the first fall, Cerebro gets conked on the head going for a dive and is stunned and submitted. All hell breaks loose in the second fall with Gringo Loco popping Cerebro and busting his head open, but Cerebro fires back. The third fall was awesome, crazy dives, great looking brawling and Terry cheap shotting Diablo every chance he gets. Then you get a totally awesome Dusty finish with Loco cracking Cerebro with a chain allowing Diablo to get the pin. Then Terry grabs Loco, digs super deep into his trunks and pulls out the chain to show the ref. I really wish we had a copy of the first tag match, because every other match in this feud has been total money.

TKG: This was awesome. This wasn’t IWRG doing a great IWRG straight up traditional title match, this was IWRG doing a great AAA style title match. And doing it amazingly well. The match is shaped by idea that Hijo del Diablo is the bigger and stronger of the two. That whole story is made by Dr Cerebro spectacular selling. First fall Hijo Del Diablo’s slowed with age mat work felt really deliberate and forceful which helped get the story across. Cerebro really sells that he has to struggle against Hijo Del Diablo’s size. Second fall was all about Diablo’s power bombs and Cerebro just made these look amazingly devastating. Third fall was reminder of what an awesome highflyer Diablo once was and just is out of control crazyness, with lots of second/ commissioner horseshit. Often times second commissioner horseshit will slow everything down, set off the pace, interfere with the flow and just kill a match…but here it totally played into and added to the drama.

Dinastia Navarro v. Dinastia Morgan

PAS: Another really great match, a tremendous end to a tremendous month. This is set up mostly father v. son, and we only get moments of the two veterans. Both opening mat sections were really good, Pirata is a big dude and he does matwork like a heavyweight MMA wrestler. Navarro is Navarro, really doing a nice job dancing around Hijo Del Pirata, at one point he breaks a submission by twisting a finger like Steven Segal or something. I loved the first fall submission he put on too, it looked like he said "fuck it, I always wanted to try this." Second and third falls were more brawling, and all four guys are great brawlers. Trauma I has become such a beast, he just lays into Pirata with headbutts, there is also a great moment where, Navarro just runs across the ring and drops a thudding body shot. Finish was really cool with Pirata and Navarro locked into a figure four, both sons dive onto the other fathers and eliminate them, then we get a really well done Trauma I v. El Hijo Del Pirata one on one battle.

TKG: All three falls here had spectacular finishes but a lot of this match just felt messy. I really liked the opening section between Trauma I and Pirata Morgan. It had a real “battle of the bulls” feel to it as two heavyweights just slamming into each other and looking completely worn down by the end. Navarro is a guy who can work brawling tank but I think he made the decision to allow his son to play heavyweight tank tag partner and reduced himself into role of technical tag partner. I thought the Hijo del Pirata v Navarro primera caida had some problems. Navarro’s released-submissions felt far more heelish than they usually do. Pirata would put Navarro into submission, Navarro would reverse/escape it then slap on his own submission and then dismissively let it go. This was a heel v heel match with Navarros essentially being the faces. I’ve seen Navarro as face v heel, seen him as heel v heel, seen as heel v face. I’ve seen Navarro dismissively manhandle folks before, but this really felt like the way he does it opposite someone who he’s trying to get over as a face. It should be also said that Hijo’s comeback to earn Navarro’s respect wasn’t a move that forced Navarro to ropes or anything like that, instead it was Hijo being able to roll out of a hold on own without Navarro releasing it early. Navarro “Oh you can roll out, I respect you. Here’s my hand”…is odd. It all came off as a neat idea that didn't really work. Hijo del Pirata’s stuff often looked off. But I came away from this wanting to see a Trauma I v Pirata Morgan match, which is a weird thing to want.

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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

IWRG on Segunda Caida

We have reviewed a ton of IWRG shows on this blog, it is one of our favorites and eventually we will be reviewing it all. There is a Segunda Caida affiliated IWRG message board which everyone should join and check out. Here are links to all the shows we have reviewed, and this will be updated as more gets done.

2004

9/2

2009

3/19
3/26
4/2
4/16
4/23
5/14
5/21
5/28
6/4
6/18
7/9
7/16
7/23
7/30
8/6
8/13
8/20
8/27
9/3
9/10
9/24
10/18
10/22
10/29
11/1
11/5
11/8
11/15
11/19
11/26
11/29
12/3
12/6
12/20
12/25
12/27
2009 Errata Matches
2009 Awards



2010

1/1
1/3
1/7
1/10
1/14
1/21
1/24
1/28
1/31
January Awards
2/4
2/7
2/11
2/14
2/18
2/21
2/25
2/28
February Awards
3/4
3/7
3/11

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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

And I Don't Want to Know if Cassandro's Lonely/Don't Want to Know if He is Less Than Lonely

~Nygma/Polvo de Estrellas/Yuriko vs. Cassandro/Pasion Cristal/Pimpinela Escarlata (AAA, 4/10/08) - VERY GOOD

Boy the Night Queens are just the largest grab bag in all of exotico-based lucha libre. They range from being extremely fun to being the worst wrestlers you have ever seen. And they were completely not horrible at all in this match. Polvo looked really good here and really set up spots nicely, getting into good position. The other at least can eat a rana and do some cool garbage spots.

Cassandro completely owned this one, just running around like mad and hitting all kinds of awesome spots. His springboard huracanrana is a really a thing of beauty, and he had a great somersault tope (along with his always nutso ringpost bump). Pimpi had some great stuff here including an awesome bombs away butt drop off the top, and Pasion Cristal ranged from looking really crummy to really taking some nasty garbage spots. The Night Queens putting his head in a trash can, then missile drop kicking it was pretty great.

This match was really fun, but rather short. That might've been for the best, as too much stuff was going well all at once, we might've been pushing our luck to ask for more.

~Incognito/Mascara Ano Dos Mil Jr. vs. Cassandro/Hijo del Cien Caras (Promociones Wagner, 8/2/08) - SKIPPABLE

This match wasn't really all that bad, it was just filled with more hermanos antics (and not fun rudo antics, more lame finger poke of doom antics). Initially I was super disappointed, as the matchlist I had did not mention that these were the Dinamitas SONS. So I was salivating over the potential for Cien Caras beating down the Juarez Mystico, or Mascara Ano Dos Mil's undoubtedly AWESOME facials when Cassandro tried to kiss him, OR even the brothers going against EACH OTHER!! All sounded like incredible options.

But then the sons came out instead. I don't know if they're the real sons, but I'm assuming they're not. I mean, I hope they're not as they both appear to be in their mid 30s and don't have an ounce of their supposed fathers' talent.

So Cassandro and Incognito match up really nicely and Cassandro was able to work a bunch of cool spots and roll ups with him. It's not even so much that the jr. Dynamite Bros are bad...they're just really uninteresting. They let Cassandro and Incognito hit their spots, then one would just let the other pin him (they're on opposite teams! It's wacky!). Crowd seemed to genuinely want them to fight each other, but they wouldn't. By the 3rd caida they just started working as a team and the match ended when Cassandro and Incognito each got the pin on seemingly their own respective teammates. I really had no complaints about who was the legal man at that point, but was just hoping for a little more creatively. Maybe the brothers could've done some subtle dissension, like when Billy Zabka's teammate Bobby is told to do an illegal move to take Daniel out of the Karate Kid tournament, and he does it but is instantly remorseful. Bobby never understood why they were beating up Daniel so much. It wasn't HIS ex-girlfriend that had the hots for Daniel, it was Johnny's! So they're fucking dressed up like skeletons and beating the shit out of Daniel and Bobby's like "He's had enough Johnny" and fuck man, he probably didn't even WANT to do karate but maybe his parents got a divorce and he was a latchkey kid or something and he just wanted something to do in the afternoons to take his fucking mind off all the serious shit in his life, but then all that serious shit starts becoming JUST AS SERIOUS and he has to forfeit his own fucking place in the tourney all because Billy Zabka wants to square off in the finals against Daniel, at ANY cost. Ralph Macchio was 23 in that movie, by the way. What the fuck, right?

Cassandro looked really good here, but it just wasn't meant to be.

~Cassandro vs. Chuck Taylor (IWA-MS, 9/26/08) - FUN

I think this match is unfairly maligned by the internet fans of Cassandro. Cards on the table, Chuck Taylor is pretty bad most of the time. Sometimes he doesn't look as bad, namely when he's teaming up with the far worse dudes that make up Team F.I.S.T. He's not good, but he ain't anywhere near as bad as Icarus. Yeah, his brand of "wink into the camera" comedy that makes him the Ryan Reynolds of wrestling can get a little old a little fast, but I thought it worked quite nicely against Cassandro, a man who knows how to integrate comedy into and around his awesome wrestling.

Tracey Smothers was on commentary here which is entertaining beyond belief. Some of his asides were just awesome: "He's exotic and everything he is, but uh, he knows his stuff" or "I'm familiar with his stuff, but I've never seen him live". Cassandro IS exotic and everything he is! And the idea of Smothers being familiar with Cassandro's work before this tournament is just fucking rad. Smothers just sitting around watching random AAA dvds and saying, "Man this fucker is exotic and everything". It's a visual I want to have.

The match itself it really awesome when Taylor doesn't wrestle. Every time he tries to do something like a clubbing forearm it's just as ugly as ugly gets. But his comedy works really well here. Cassandro naturally wants his goods, and Taylor is great trying to avoid a mid-match makeout session. Hiding behind the ref, getting through the ropes, it's all fun but you know that kiss is inevitable. His post-kiss sell is really great, as while Cassandro has him in a leg lock he's alternating selling his leg with trying to wipe another man's saliva off his mouth. He also takes the "run face first into Cassandro's ass" corner spot really great. I praise Fit Finlay for always leaning right into punches, forearms, and kicks, and making them look way better than they should at times......so it seems odd to praise Chuck Taylor for leaning into somebody's ass....but damn if Taylor didn't lean right the hell into Cassandro's ass to completely put over that awesome spot.

Cassandro has some troubles with the ultra loose ropes but totally makes up for it by hitting an absolutely insane somersault tope that crashes right through Taylor (nice catch, doofus) and lands him through about 8 chairs. Totally crazy. So yeah, this match had a lot going for it and was totally fun, more than made up for Taylor's usual lousiness and the weird ending.

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Sunday, May 09, 2010

IWRG 10/18/09

Epidemia/Heavy Boy v. Miss Gaviota/Jack

TKG: Epidemia/Heavy Boy have a reputation for filling a match with lots and lots of “innovative” offense. Here they came across kind of subdued. Although their non-“innovative” filler isn’t particularly interesting either. Heavy Boy does an absolutely devastating Senton on Miss Gaviota to end one fall. And they do a nasty backbreaker into leg drop on Miss Gaviota in another. Their finishers on Jack were nowhere near as nasty.

PAS: This wasn’t very good, outside of the two nasty finishes there wasn’t a single redeeming thing about the match. Miss Gaviota usually has a bunch of decent exotico comedy spots, but for some reason Jack worked a bunch of moves based around sticking his dick in the rudos faces. That really should have pissed Gaviota off, if you are teaming with Rufus R. Jones you don’t do the cabbage patch.

El Hijo Del Signo v. Eragon

TKG: So apparently these guys are feuding and in a singles match on the undercard. Both Eragon and El Hijo Del Signo are young undercard guys who I like but not guys who I think of as having three strong falls in them, let alone three falls in a singles match. Here they had one good opening mat fall with some awkward arm drags, a directionless meandering second fall with a really cool finish run, and a listless third fall (they may have been selling fatigue) leading to a neat finish. Eragon’s wheelbarrow into front cracker is a spot he should use regularly as Eragon is a guy who has cool first fall finishes but his second and third fall finishes normally look weaker. Here he had cool finishes in second and third fall…he needs to figure out what to do in body before the finish.

PAS: I really liked the first fall matwork, most IWRG young guys are Navarro and Terry trained so most of them can do some nifty mat things, still they usually are much weaker on transitions between the cool things. In this mat section I thought they did a nice job in the in between. There was enough cool things in the second two falls that it could have been pretty good, unfortunately there was enough bad shit to keep it from being good.

Gringo Loco/Arliquin Amarillo/Arliquin Rojo v. Bushi/Exodia/Hombre Bala Jr.

PAS: You know you are in the deep brush when Arliquin Amarillo is the work star of the match. He took a couple of nice bumps and did a really cool spot where he blocked a dive with a right hand. Everything else was a godawful trainwreck. Hombre Bala Jr. has good genes, but this looked like his first match, as he blew 2/3rds of the things he tried.

TKG: Arlequin Amarilo starts the first fall working over Exodia’s leg and does the spot where rudo bites the tecnicos foot. I’ve never really understood why anyone would bite someone else’s boot. That’s nasty. Still, Arlequin does something I’ve never seen before. He actually bites a chunk of the sole clear off and spits it out. Then he continues to work on the sole. I’m not sure if having one ripped sole will affect balance but it both felt like a neat way to work the leg and also legit asshole move. Exodia isn’t getting paid much if anything. Boots are expensive. It’s going to be a couple years before Exodia can trick a US indy promoter into buying his boots, and several ring jackets. First fall felt like a touch better than what I was expecting with Arlequins/Gringo Loco v Bushi/Exodia/and Hombre Bala Jr. That is not much praise but still. After that the next two falls made me feel sorry for the Arlequins. They deserved better.

Los Officiales v. Los Piratas

PAS: We needed this match to save the show, and it really did. This may have been the best Jr. Piratas performances I can remember. They are limited guys, good bumpers with nasty triple teams, but they don’t always hit their stuff cleanly and can get lost. Outside of an awkward moment or two everything was hit well and the pacing of match was pretty cool. Piratas get bumped around and dominated in the first fall, but come back with a vengeance. They just trash the Oficiales in the second and third fall, eliminating AK-47 in the second fall with a crazy silla in the crowd. They then brutalize the other two Officales, smacking them with topes, busting them open with pencil shots, and finally killing 911 with a insane spiked double DDT. I really came out of this wanting to see if the Oficiales could get revenge, and sort of in awe of what wrecking machines the Piratas were.

TKG: Yeah this is the match you wanted to see out of these two teams. Just lots of triple teams, lots of Ofiiales eating dives, ad lots of brawling through crowd. Real sense of reckless violence from both teams. I liked the breaking of the pencil in the open cut. This sets up a title match. I’m not sure if the Piratas have a title match in them but there was something to the out of control brawl that made me hope.

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Wednesday, May 05, 2010

BattlArts 9/6/09

This is the finals of the B1 tourney which was kind of mixed bag overall

Yuki Ishikawa v. Keita Yano

PAS: Match had it's moments of the sublime and the ridiculous. Ishikawa is pretty great as we know, and he lays in the punches and does some really nasty stretching of Yano. Yano does some cool stuff here, I liked his neck crank where he links his hands behind his back, and he hit some nice knees, but fuck when he is bad he is bad. At one point he does a horrible looking Bryan Danielson MMA elbows tribute and follows it with a double springboard Chris Sabin thigh slap dropkick. Ishikawa should ban US Indy torrents from the BattlArts dojo ASAP.

TKG: This was a fine match despite Yano's stuff. Normally when you have a good mach with Yano, it is about opponent keeping Yano's stuff to minimum. Here Yano just gets to do one egregiously bad looking thing after another. Yet Ishikawa has enough stuff to fill a match around it that you leave satisfied. On some level I guess I don't mind a match with a lot of stupid bad looking shit when the story is "here is a guy beating someone who does a lot of stupid bad looking shit".

Bison TAGAI v Muenenori Sawa

TKG: I actively enjoyed the body of this as they do a nice job of working a "guy with speed vs. guy with bulk" story despite Sawa not being a guy who I think of as being particularly quick and TAGAI's not a guy I think of as being particularly bulky, And then it falls apart in the last two minutes of the thirteen minute match. The whole end run is built around Sawa's more goofy stuff, none of which are executed well here. I do mind it when the stupid bad looking stuff wins the match.

PAS: Sawa is a guy who's basic stuff looks pretty good, and he can be carried to a very good match if you keep his poor instincts in check. TAGAI is a guy who can't do anything complicated, but is perfectly fine doing basic stuff. When this was basic it was pretty good, but Sawa needed to get his stuff in, and his stuff kind of sucks.

Yuta Yoshikawa v. Ryuji WALTERS

TKG: This was pretty fun. WALTERS is a guy who actually is bulky and early on WALTERS just stampedes Yoshikawa out of the ring. Both do some fine mat work with long side headlockish control stuff. They move into an almost "your turn my turn" run that is saved by how much I actively enjoyed the reversals and it ends with just a spectacular step over toe hold. Yoshikawa is a guy who I think of as hit and miss and WALTERS is a guy who is always fun as a crowbar but not completely sold on him, and the two have the best wrestling match on the show thus far.

PAS: This was really good stuff. I think WALTERS has really become a solid all around wrestler. He wasn't just potatoing Yoshikawa he also sold really well and worked the mat solidly. WALTERS final run of offense was really brutal, Pain Game into a released vertical suplex and the cranking and pulling on the step over toe hold was great.

There was a worked San Sho match which lasted about two minutes. The winner gives a long speech after, and I am without context

Katsumi Usuda/Kysouke Sasaki v. Satoshi Kajiwara/Yujiro Yamamoto

TKG: I've liked the Usuda/Sasaki team before. Sasaki can be kind of dickish with a couple amusing bucking moves and it compliments Usuda well. Sasaki is an ex U-Style guy, and Kajiwara is a Toyumon guy and the two match up weirdly well with a bunch of neat exchanges including a nasty high knee catch of spear. Sasaki and Yammamoto also have pretty good mat exchanges although there are moments where Sasaki looks a step off. This never hit high end Battlarts tag territory but everyone matched up well and these are teams I would like to see more of.

PAS: This was pretty solid stuff, Yammamoto is by far the best of the young guys and has really good chemistry with Usuda. I also though Kajiwara fit in really well with everyone, the finish run with Usuda was great as Kajiwara busts out all of his offense with a ton of intensity only to see Usuda counter a kneebar with a nasty looking crotch stretch for the submission. It really felt Fujiwaraish how he came out of nowhere to steal the win.

Yuki Ishikawa v. Super Tiger II

TKG: Super Tiger appears to bust Ishikawa's eye in about the first 45 seconds of this. They work some cool mat stuff, I especially liked the Ishikawa chops to SuperTiger's kidneys to escape a hold. This had a real Fujiwara feel to it for long chunks as Ishikawa is blind guy absorbing punishment hoping for an opening to exploit. But he becomes blind 45 seconds in, so it never really felt like their was a build to Fujiwara end run it was just that end run as 7 minute match.

PAS: I thought this was a couple of pretty good performances which didn't add up to great match. Tiger was really vicious laying into Ishikawa with Ishikawa being really defensive and back peddling. Ishikawa is so great as gutsy guy who is willing to die on his sword, and Tiger throws some nasty kicks. Still he is definitely hampered by the orbital bone break. If Tiger broke his face 8 minutes in, instead of 90 seconds in this might have been a MOTYC.

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IWRG 9/24/09

Imperio Azteca/ Miss Gaviota v Hijo Del Signo/Black Thunder:

TKG: This is early Hijo Del Signo and he kind of works like a basic NJ type rookie. Can competently work through some basic mat work, has some nice looking clotheslines and one cool flying spot (the kind of ridiculous second rope superflysplash). I don’t know if I’ve ever seen Imperio Azteca before but he has this weird body like a 50 year old Dj Qualls, and he has the feel of guy who has probably been working for 38 years but isn’t particularly good. He is really entertaining at going from ring to floor. He has a couple neat ways of bumping out of the ring and has a really great looking tope.

PAS: The tope in this match was completely unexpected, it was just going along at a normal IWRG undercard pace, and all of a sudden the pocky guy just wrecks Signo with a 1996 Shocker level tope into the third row. Gaviota has really developed some amusing exotico spots, I loved him setting up the Undertaker rope walk with two chops and two cock fondles. Black Thunder looked awful here, if Skyde’s trainee legacy is this dude, CIMA and the Colony that is a weak fucking legacy.

Jack/Eragon v Xibalva/Carta Brava Jr

TKG: Yikes. Xibalva v Jack was exactly as uninspired as you would expet from uninspired Xibabla v uninspired Jack. Carta Brava Jr v Eragon as actively disappointing and there is no reason to watch this match.

PAS: Inspired pedal to the metal Jack is decent. Don’t give a fuck Jack is brutal to watch

Exodia/Freelance/Bushi v. Gringo Loco/Toxico/Avisman

PAS: Pretty disappointing, Freelance is amazing and he ran through a bunch of his signature stuff. Still watching Freelance in a match like this is like watching Santo stuck in a crappy trios with Blue Demon Jr. and mailing it in Perro Jr.. Toxico is one of the more useless guys in lucha libre, but I thought Exodia may have stunk as bad here. There were moments that he looked down right Chikaraish in his tentative rope running and student lucha libre.

TKG: Exodia is still a green rookie. He normally has two nice dives and can't put anything else together. Here I kind of liked the way he ate a couple of things, took a nice posting and got thrown out of ring in a couple cool ways. His in ring dive and most of his in ring stuff looked bad, but at least he had those bumps.Toxico through out some stuff so convoluted it would make Nova laugh.

Rigo/Chico Che v Arlequin Amarilo/Arlequin Rojo (Caballera v Caballera)

TKG: This show has been disappointing thus far but this more then delivered. Arlequin Rojo lost his mask to Rigo last week and I'm sad that we don't have that. Arlequin Rojo may be actively good, as most of his stuff landed nice and he has a nice dive. Arlequin Amarillo appears to be working really hard in this stip match. I have seen Arlequin in other stip matches and in big matches before but never remember him working this hard. Rigo and Chico Che of course are awesome. Rigo takes crazy bumps. I think I’ve complimented somebody for their out of ring bumps in every match on this show and maybe Rigo is now involved in training because he is the king of the awesomely awkward bumping. First fall and big chunks of the second are built around Arlequin’s beating the faces. They d a spot where Arlequin Amarillo teases a martinete, the ref gets involved and Arlequin switches it to a shoulderbreaker. Fuck does Rigo take that shoulderbreaker well. He makes it look like he lands all awkwardly on the knee then flies off crooked and lands again shoulder first like a dart into the mat. Both Chico Che and Rigo are really good at selling oxygen/blood loss. We have joked before about Rigo looking like 2010 Ozzy, but fuck he sells near death comeback like 2010 Brett Michaels. Rigo is elimnated with an acidental miscommunication foul from Chico Che which denies us the big Rigo dive. But still this was a blast.

PAS: Yeah this was really good stuff, I thought the ending was a bit off which kept it from being a complete classic. Both Chico Che and Arlequin Amarilo deliver Wrestling Gold centerfold level blade jobs. All the bleeding is proceeded by the removal of the turnbuckle and the slamming of heads into the bolt. It is the nastiest I have seen that spot look, as the bolt looks filthy and rusty. That might have been really great fatigue selling by Rigo and Chico Che or it might have been the beginnings of lockjaw. Man it is too bad Rigo disappeared because he was completely awesome.

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