Segunda Caida

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

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Matches from Effy's Big Gay Brunch 10/10/20

Manders/Matthew Justice/Mance Warner/Levi Everett vs. O'Shay Edwards/MV Young/Billy Dixon/Joshua Wavra

ER: 8 man tags are a great formula, nearly impossible to mess up. It's a match structure that really only needs a couple of good wrestlers to work, and the rest can just be guys with 1-2 nice spots. The higher the % of good wrestlers, the better the formula works. There are roughly several hundred incredibly fun 15 minute NOAH 6 man and 8 man tags, maybe the peak of the non-lucha multiman style, but it's a match should always work. This one is on the low end, but it's a high floor match type. It had a disappointingly low amount of Manders and O'Shay (with them working a somewhat out of place moment where big Billy Dixon inadvertently knocks O'Shay off the apron and it leads to a minor argument) and Manders just being by far the least featured guy on his team. Seeing the brilliance Manders has produced with Big Twan  Tucker, Manders vs. O'Shay was the showdown I most wanted, and I don't think it happened at all. Outside of O'Shay I was unfamiliar with our babyface team. This match felt oddly built as a MV Young showcase, which is fine, he had some nice kicks, but was also the most "kickpad pro" which isn't something I wanted out of this. Dixon has a nice round shape and hit a cool Thesz press off the top for a good nearfall, and Wavra was someone who had no problem leaning into and getting bent painfully by a Mancer lariat. Justice and Mancer have the kind of charisma you want in a match like this, and Justice especially has that beefy Snake Pliskin thing that just connects. He takes a disgusting vertical suplex over the back of an open folding chair, hits a big man splash to pin Dixon, is part of a big dive train (that also includes a nice fast Levi Everett tope and Wavra tope con hilo), and knows how to fill downtime with brawling. Mancer hits his fakeout tope into several eye pokes, Everett hits a diving headbutt far across the ring, and they kept a strong pace going through 15+ minutes. Pace is maybe the most important part of a match like this, as there should never be downtime in a match with this many people. So while not everything worked and there was some messiness and poor balance of who got the most ring time, the pace meant that this always kept at least a certain level of enjoyability. 

Cassandro vs. Sonny Kiss

PAS:  So awesome to see Cassandro get a showcase match in the US like this. He is really a guy that should have been used by indy promotions for years, but I can only remember this and a IWA-MS Ted Petty spot. Kiss is a guy with impressive individual spots, but a lack of connective tissue, and Cassandro can provide that. Cassandro is 50 now, and you can tell all of the hard falls over the years have taken a bit off his fastball, but he still goes damn hard in this match, doing an awesome flip tope, taking some bumps on the concrete and even winning with a top rope victory roll. Kiss is clearly thrilled to be working a legend and also tries really hard. For a second this felt like this would turn into a nasty brawl, which would have brought it to the next level, but it was a good showcase match for a guy truly deserving of a showcase.

ER: It really is nuts that American indy Cassandro wasn't more of a thing, and I consider myself lucky that he was the top Lucha Va Voom guy (meaning I got to see him work CA a few times). But even old man Cassandro feels like someone who should be getting spots on indy shows (and would be an actual draw to those shows). I like Sonny Kiss but he's a guy who fits great into a trios, less so into a singles. That said, this felt like the most natural pairing on the card. I could have seen him against Still Life, Allie Kat, or Effy, but the most famous exotico of the past 20 years vs. the current most broadly seen exotico felt like something you couldn't pass up running. There were a couple odd moments, like Cassandro hitting a heavy crossbody but then staying down to sell for so long that Kiss just pinned him, but there was a ton to love here. Both are good at taking the others' offense, like Kiss snapping over for Cassandro's still quick armdrags, or the expert way both caught each others' dives. The two dives we got were great, with Cassandro's excellent flip tope sending them into folding chairs my favorite move of the show. But Kiss hits a nice tope that Cassandro totally absorbs, sending them both spilling back toward the entrance. I, too, got excited once they started brawling on the floor, and as Kiss comes after Cassandro on the floor Cassandro just ole's Kiss face first into a chair! I didn't see it coming and it looked like the kind of trick Cassandro could use to send a mugger into the side of a building. We don't get the violent crowd brawl that they hinted at, but the stuff in ring was fun. I loved Cassandro's pageant rope walk armdrag, and Kiss hits this awesome handspring axe kick while Cassandro is laid out over the turnbuckles, just a heel coming down hard right in the breastbone. Cassandro's victory rolls (the normal and avalanche version to finish) looked great, Kiss had this cool splits landing into a sweeping kick (basically all the splits landings Kiss does amaze me every time), and I'm so happy we got this. It was a lot of fun, and it's a match that's been long overdue. 


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