Ross Report - 3/23/20 Mar 23, 2020 23:23:09 GMT jared, Too Sweet Spartan (Vinny), and 2 more like this
Post by Ross Report on Mar 23, 2020 23:23:09 GMT
An "Insurgency" is usually a precursor to a full-blown revolution, and looking at last night's slobberknocker of a Pay-Per-View, you can see why that name was so apt! Let's break down all the action!
We kicked things off with tag team competition as "The Shining Colons" (or is that now "The Colon-Stars?") taking on the team of "Trent?" and Chuck Taylor, otherwise known as "Best Friends." Both of these duos were making their EWA debuts here, and both looking to establish themselves as potential future challengers for the Tag Team Championships! Of course, it's worth noting that both teams also made much-talked about appearances on "The Ellen Show" last week to hype this encounter as well, so one might wonder if there wasn't a part of them fighting for Ellen's approval too. Putting that speculation to one side for the time being, one thing we do know for sure is that both "Best Friends" and the Colon cousins bring plenty of tag team experience to the table, resulting in a fast-paced and action-packed contest between the two tandems! Under the watchful gaze of Orange Cassidy, who spent the entire match on the outside, it would ultimately be Primo and Epico who scored the decisive pinfall after a double team Backstabber on "Trent?" However, I wouldn't be surprised if this rivalry is only just getting started!
We knew Eric Young planned to call out the "MIA" Jack Gallagher at Insurgency, and "The World Maniac" did just that last night! Demanding that the reigning National Champion come out and face him like a man, Young was left disappointed when Gallagher instead appeared via the EWA-Tron! Indeed, "The Extraordinary Gentleman" has taken "extraordinary" precautions to quarantine himself, declaring that he didn't intend to return to the EWA and defend his title until it was safe to do so! It should probably go without saying that that wasn't the response Eric Young was looking for, leaving the veteran Canadian grappler understandably frustrated. Short of heading to Jack Gallagher's stately home with a Referee in tow and the express permission of EWA management, I don't foresee him getting his title match anytime soon!
In another double debut match, we had Sammy Guevara facing off with Tyler Breeze! These two young guns are about as talented as they come, possessing plenty of that elusive quality known as "potential." It's one thing having potential though and quite another turning it into sustained success, but from the evidence of this encounter, I'd wager that both Sammy and Tyler seem capable of going all the way in the EWA! While Orange Cassidy might not have played a huge role in the previous match, Mr. Anderson was highly active here, offering advice to "Prince Pretty" throughout and even taking a bullet for his protégé at one stage! It seemed to pay off for the most part too, with Breeze taking control of the contest and keeping Sammy Guevara on the backfoot the longer it progressed. Alas, "The Spanish God" proved himself to be a canny competitor in his own right, kicking Tyler's leg out from under him as he re-entered the ring before rolling his opponent up with a rope-assisted small package that secure the win! While you might say Guevara resorted to nefarious tactics to get the job done, this will no doubt be a lesson that Mr. Anderson makes sure Tyler Breeze learns from!
Bill Goldberg hasn't had the best of luck during previous stints with the EWA, but judging by the comments he made during an interview with Renee Young, it seems as if the former Atlanta Falcon has had enough of playing nice. In fact, it sounds like the only thing he cares about right now is making as much money as possible in however much of his career he has left, and who can blame him in these uncertain times? Well, someone who absolutely took umbrage to it was Tommaso Ciampa, who accused Goldberg of having always been about the money and never having any passion for the sport of pro wrestling, unlike "The Sicilian Psychopath!" Rather than spark a backstage brawl right then and there though, Goldberg declared that Ciampa was "next," seemingly signaling an impending encounter between the two of them! And I for one can't wait to see these two firecrackers go at it!
Elsewhere and Jacob Fatu last week laid down the challenge to anyone who wanted to face him for the Television Title live on Pay-Per-View. That said, I don't think anyone expected Bobby Salsa to be the man to answer that call, seemingly at the prompting of "The Samoan Werewolf" himself. Did Fatu set this up to give himself an easy night, much akin to what "The Honky Tonk Man" has spent the last several weeks doing? I wouldn't like to say with any certainty, but given Fatu's run of form since signing with the EWA, you would expect to see him testing his mettle against opposition that provided more of a challenge. Speaking of which, Fatu got a big surprise when he demanded a second opponent come out and face him, with "Rhino" making a shocking return to the EWA for the first time since "The House of H" disbanded back in 2018! That ignited a wild brawl between the two men which saw the Referee inadvertently knocked down before he could call for the bell and make it official, resulting in security having to pull the two bruisers apart! Still, it would seem "The Man-Beast" is on a collision course with Jacob Fatu one way or another, and I'd suggest it's only a matter of time before they clash over the coveted TV Championship!
It looked as if "The Honky Tonk Man's" chickens were about to come home to roost as he and Santino prepared to defend the Tag Team Titles against "Demolition" last night. Alas, "Honky" seemingly had one more trick up his sleeve as the Mulkey brothers tried to jump "Ax" and "Smash" during their entrance, providing a distraction which allowed my old pal Jerry "The King" Lawler to bash in "Ax's" knee with his royal scepter! That meant "Ax" was stretchered out of the arena as the match looked unlikely to go ahead, only for "Smash" to face the champions in what effectively became a two-on-one handicap match! And even with those odds against him, take your hat off to "Smash" because he still brought the fight right to "Honky" and Santino! In the end though, the challenge proved too much to handle for one man, with Santino putting his opponent down with a deadly Cobra Strike, only to get coerced into tagging out to "Mr. Shake, Rattle And Roll" so he could claim the victory for himself! I don't know why I'm so surprised to see such antics from "The Honky Tonk Man" after all these years, yet there you go. Still, the champions continue to make the titles their own, but with the two of them still not singing from the same hymn sheet, who knows how much longer that will continue? Especially with all the teams who are eagerly waiting in the wings for an opportunity, such as "Tokyo Vice," "The Butcher" and "The Blade," "Best Friends," and "The Shining Colons" to name but a few!
Someone else who's eager to make the most of any opportunity that comes his way is "Killer Kross!" Indeed, "The Devil of Sin City" refuses to rest until he's recognized as the absolute best to lace a pair of boots! Talk about an ambitious goal, but then, given Kross' mix of grim determination and total lack of mercy, there's every chance he can achieve it! Watch this space!
I've been saying it all month long, but the EWA women's division feels more alive in recent weeks than it has done in months thanks to the influx of new faces! And never was that more obvious than during last night's breathtaking Six Pack Challenge which pitted a half-dozen of the best women's wrestlers on the planet against one another in a high-stakes match with big time Civil War implications! While the winner would secure the coveted final entry slot at the second ever Women's Civil War Match, the superstar who was pinned or submitted would find themselves confined to the number one spot, making it all the more difficult to go the distance and walk out with the Women's Championship recently vacated by Sasha Banks! Needless to say then, this match was vitally important for all six competitors, perhaps none moreso than "The Boss'" potential apprentice, "La Hiedra," as she comes to the end of her two-week trial! It's fair to say they've had a few personality clashes since Sasha took the luchadora under her wing, yet "Hiedra" is all too aware that having Banks behind her could be her ticket to superstardom...that is, if she can pass her quote/unquote audition! At the same time though, Momo Watanabe and Kelly Klein have struck up a friendship recently that saw the two of them working together (and looking out for one another) throughout much of this match, making them a formidable pairing! As for Becky Lynch, she came into the Six Pack Challenge believing herself the rightful candidate to replace Sasha as champion following their previous battles, but "The Queen Slayer" might have allowed her confidence to underestimate her fellow competitors. Especially when you've got an opponent like the newly reinvigorated Emma to contend with, who seems to have found the spark that was missing from her career thanks to the guidance of "The Zodiac!" And then you have the "X-Factor" in Daizee Haze, the only superstar in the match yet to compete in the EWA, meaning she packed one hell of a surprise for her opponents! Indeed, after a chaotic battle lasting 30 minutes, Kelly Klein thought she had Daizee beat, only for Momo to break up her friend's pin attempt! Their relationship seemed to explode right before our eyes as Klein took Watanabe out with the K-Power, only to get launched out of the ring seconds later as Daizee Haze swooped in and capitalized for the three count! I think it's pretty obvious that the ladies stole the show last night in a major way, with Haze instantly making a name for herself in the process! Yet can she go all the way and capture the vacant title next month? Or will one of her opponents here gain a measure of revenge for this loss? Or could some unknown superstar perhaps come out of the woodwork to add their name in the history books right next to Awesome Kong and walk out with the gold? I guess we'll find out at Civil War, but I'd bet my best BBQ sauce that there's still plenty of twists and turns to come between now and then!
One brand new superstar who has her eyes set on the Women's Civil War Match is Kylie Rae, who found herself backstage at the West Virginia University Coliseum and somewhat unsure of the catering etiquette. Believe me, she's not the first person to feel that way! Thankfully though she had Bo Dallas to offer a helping hand, with "The Inspirational One" seemingly showing some interest in Kaylie's career prospects. And let's not forget, Dallas is still waiting to find out just who will answer his open challenge made for this week's SLAM! as he looks to have his first EWA match in years!
Like Scott Stanford said, our main event had a real "big fight feel" about it as Harper looked to defend the World Heavyweight Championship against a man I had an enlightening sit-down interview with last week, "MJF!" It didn't take too long to see exactly what the challenger's game plan was either, quickly cinching in the Friedman Armbar Special during the opening exchanges! Harper has a history of arm problems dating all the way back to his rivalry with Tommaso Ciampa last year, and it's no surprise that "MJF" looked to target as much of his offensive attacks on that limb! However, "The Goatsman" is not the kind of opponent you should take lightly. I've seen some critics accuse him of being "simple," but the truth is, Harper has a ton of instinctual natural ability that most of his peers would kill for. Between that and his scary size and strength, you better believe he can turn a match on its head in an instant! And when you factor in all the frustration courtesy of the countless taunts and jibes that "The Salt of The Earth" has thrown in his direction, Harper looked about as motivated as we've ever seen him last night! Not even "MJF's" attempts at stalling and slowing the pace were enough to stop Harper from getting his hands on his opponent, with the action spilling into the crowd itself at one point! Of course, you had to know that "The Dynasty" would get involved at some point, and lo and behold, that's exactly what happened! To my mind, there's no way Alexander Hammerstone or Richard Holliday should have been allowed anywhere near ringside in the first place, which is why it was a relief to see the official finally sent them both to the back to even the odds! Without his back-up to get involved, "MJF" soon found himself being tossed around like a ragdoll! However, when Harper's attempts at a superplex were countered, the World Champion suffered a bad landing which brought his arm issues back to the surface, setting up for another Friedman Armbar Special! Harper just about made it to the ropes thanks to his long, rangy build, yet "The Top 1%er" was like a shark that smelled blood in the water, continuing to inflict further damage! Those efforts almost backfired though when Harper suddenly took "MJF" down with a Truckstop Lariat, only for the injury to delay the pinfall and give Maxwell enough time to kick out right into another armbar! Any normal man would have tapped at that point, but not Harper. No, "The Goatsman" proved his resilience as he made it to the ropes and then avoided a swanton! The fight crashed back into ringside, where Harper's exuberance may have cost him, with "MJF" avoiding a charge to ensure his opponent struck the steel ring stairs shoulder-first! With the damage done, he was able to get Harper back in the ring and apply his trademark hold one more time...and on this occasion, it finally became too much, leaving Harper with no choice but to give up! That means we've got ourselves a NEW World Heavyweight Champion in the shape of Maxwell Jacob Friedman, someone who has been tipped for greatness from the moment he arrived in the EWA! Well, he's finally ascended to the top of the proverbial mountain now, and one has to believe that it's going to be tough to knock him from that perch! Like him or loathe him, there's no changing the fact that "MJF" is the top dog in professional wrestling right now!
Well, I guess that just leaves us with the business of my choices for this week's top three movers and shakers, right?
2. Daizee Haze
3. Sammy Guevara
If you're gonna be cocky, you damn sure better be able to back it up. And as much as I've had to criticize Maxwell Jacob Friedman over the last year, there's no doubt he's backed it up when it matters the most, culminating in this incredible World Title victory! Coming in at number two, Daizee Haze rose to the occasion in her EWA debut against five other supremely talented women, and in turn increasing her chances of walking out of Civil War with the Women's Championship! And last but by no means least, the match between Sammy Guevara and Tyler Breeze felt like a glimpse at the EWA's future, with two young, hungry talents putting it all on the line! With "The Spanish God's" victory, tainted as it may have been, that puts him in pole position as one to watch for the rest of the year!
What a show Insurgency was, and what a stage it provided for so many new talents to make a name for themselves! But if you think this was a "one and done," think again! We're now entering one of my favorite periods in the EWA calendar as the countdown to this year's Civil War officially begins! And with TWO Civil War Matches on the card, it seems like there's going to be plenty of opportunities for superstars to grab the proverbial brass ring and make it their own over the coming weeks! Don't believe me? Then check out this Sunday's SLAM!, live from Kansas City, Missouri, and see for yourself! Until next time,